I thought I would leave my tagline as my intro today.
Life has been a whirlwind, and for oh, so many reasons.
Let's see, there are ten kids and two adults, four dogs, eleven horses, uncounted cats, twelve rabbits, sixteen ducks and uncounted chickens in our household. Okay, so really, the horses, most cats, rabbits (except one), ducks and chickens all live outside. But still.
Oh, yeah, and now, as of today, eight of our ten kids are teenagers, and the other two are toddlers! Sometimes way too similar to imagine. A toddler tantrum can look very much like a teen tantrum (though in all honesty and to my kids' credit, we have very few teen tantrums. Now, toddler tantrums on the other hand....). And our teens are transitioning all over the place. At the moment, as of this second, three have paying jobs, one just literally, literally moved home from an internship (this mama heart is dancing for joy by the way!), and the four thirteen year olds - yes, I did say FOUR thirteen year olds - are keeping busy with basketball, Latin, babysitting, church plays, choir and whatever else comes up. Yep, eight teenagers all at once. Some days, the hormones and drama just rage.
I am getting good practice at letting the steam roll off of them and them calming down and realizing that the world will honestly not end because "so and so" is "mad" at you this second. Because most of the drama blows over within the hour, though some can last longer.
And the toddlers are settling in quite well as typical toddlers, who are currently stretching our brain cells by repeating EVERYTHING we all say! In fact, the story one of the bigger kids confessed to, was an accidental swearing (somewhat justified given what had happened that second), which was promptly imitated by a two year old, of course at the top of her lungs, at which point the elder realized their mistake and desperately tried to undo it - of course before Mom happened to hear her littlest one chanting a four letter word in glee! Have to admit, the story literally had me rolling!
Ah, yes, and teens come up with the most interesting things - the toddlers were chasing several teens around the other night, pretending to be "zombies" - not quite what I had planned for this age. On the other hand, to hear all the siblings laughing and squealing in glee and fun made it hard to be perturbed about. There are some things you just have to let go of, I guess. I think I see where all the changes come from - with your first, you are so protective, maybe too protective, and by the time you have several more, you realize that most of what you feared won't actually hurt them anyway, and isn't scarring anyway. Some kids pretend to be bears, my littles pretend to be zombies. Not that they know what zombies are. Oh, except a thirteen year old (who shall remain nameless) did tell them they were supposed to pretend to eat people. Yeah, that wasn't planned on either. I guess bears/zombies all eat people, right? LOL!
Food Network 16-In. Electric Skillet (Google Affiliate Ad)
We have also decided that cooking in bulk and assembly line works quite well. And teenagers are quite often quite willing to jump in and help if there is food involved. Lately my kiddos have been cooking just about as much as I have, if not more. Some days chasing the toddlers is more something that I have to do, and the big kids jump right in - for which I am very grateful - and they are very good! (My poor husband had to put up with all my learning to cook when we first married. He lost 20 pounds in the first six months.) We have discovered that a large skilled works great for pancakes, french toast, injera, grilled cheese and on and on. It has become a staple at our house!
The other day three of the kids got a hankering for tortillas. However, Mom was not headed to the store, and the cost is just too much anyway (a package disappears in the blink of an eye). So, they looked up and found a recipe they liked and went to town. I have to totally admit with pride that the tortillas were FABULOUS!!!!!
Jpc Equestrian Himalayan Horse Rock Salt Lick 2.2 Pound - 3304 (Google Affiliate Ad)
AND, to announce, my horsie kiddo moved home on Saturday! We are still letting the dust settle somewhat, but it is so good to have her home! She grew a lot, learned an immeasurable amount, and came back a much more mature young lady. I am so glad to have her home. It was quite the experience, but being away, and not being able to be home for visits was just too much for someone so young. I am so proud of her for sticking it out for three months, and really making sure that this was what she wanted. I cannot even begin to tell you all that she learned, but it is so nice to have her knowledge as we build our place here. I missed my girl! We are redesigning our nutritional program for our horses, and getting quite hands on with all of them. I cannot tell you what her experience level is now! Who would have thought anyone could learn so much in three months? But, our family is all now under one roof again, and I am happy. Plus, we found so many opportunities for her here in our area, so who knows where life will take her!
Well, I got my quiet moments to finally write - toddlers are now asleep. I sit on the floor in their room while they fall asleep, and my laptop is my dearest friend then. They love that I am present and with them, and I try to catch up on things! I love to hear their gentle breathing, and yes, I can tell when they are finally really asleep, just by their breathing! They are energy in motion in general and it is just phenomenal to see their personalities develop and see all their growth! I am so blessed and I know it. Maybe not in ways the world sees as blessings, but by what really counts.
Have a lovely Thanksgiving, I hope you enjoy the blessings of family and friends, or simple comforts as we reflect on what is truly important. Love to you all!