Well last week was a WHIRLWIND (isn’t that how I start out every week lol?).
Ryan traveled the beginning of the week so I was holding down the fort solo. I remember when the kids were younger how God awful it was when he was gone. I was hanging on by a thread at the end of every single day counting down the hours until he returned. When you are in the fog of it, it seems as though it will never get better.
But I promise it does. Now when he travels we do just fine. We miss him and things run MUCH smoother with him around. I have learned that a little frozen pizza never hurt anyone, nor did a little extra TV time. Technology has made it possible to chat over computer in a way that makes it seem like Daddy is still across the kitchen table. And my parents are right down the street to help when I am losing my mind. We got this and thankfully he doesn’t travel often.
Last week was also the last week of school. Silas has been finished for a few weeks but the girls had 2 1/2 days to finish up. God only knows how they filled those two days. I heard lots about desk cleaning and field trips and fun games outside for extra recesses and ice cream parties. We all just kind of limp to the finish after Memorial Day.
The highlight of the end of school was a doozy. We live in an area with one of the most concentrated Dutch populations outside of The Netherlands. There is a cheeky saying around these parts that “if you ain’t Dutch, you ain’t much”. We ain’t Dutch, and think we are pretty awesome. In a town where the Vander (fill in the blanks) section of the phone book is the thickest part, you can imagine the excitement when the King and Queen head to Grand Rapids after a state dinner with the president.
Because one of Lily’s classmates has close ties with the King and Queen (who knew??), her class was chosen to greet them at the airport with a song sung entirely in Dutch. They had worked on it for months and months and it was actually quite impressive. I must admit I probably wasn’t as excited as I should have been since we have not a drop of Dutch blood, but it isn’t often you get to sing for royalty (I sung with Barry Manilow which is close to the same). She was so tickled and even requested to shave her legs for the first time for her performance. Apparently hairless legs are essential when you sing for the King and Queen.
If I may digress for a moment: If I could have a time machine I would go back in time and find the woman who first decided she should shave (actually it was probably some man). Lily asked me why woman shave their legs and not their arms and I had zero good reasons. It is all arbitrary and has no real purpose which makes it even more annoying. But she is now welcomed into the club and the excitement is still high about it all. She has years to begrudge it so I’ll let her be ecstatic for now. In the meantime I just figure out ways to wear maxis every day so I can avoid it.
Wednesday was finally the last day of school. It was a half day that started with the all school chapel. I cry every single stinking year because I love our school so much and I can’t believe another school year has gone by. Now I will have a 7th grader, 4th grader and Kindergartener. I could crawl into the fetal position if I think about it too much. In fact I might pause for some chocolate…… (someone got two giant Toblerone bars for her birthday)
We picked the kids up from school with packed suitcases and surprised them with a trip to Cedar Point. More on that tomorrow (as it was a blog sponsored trip) but needless to say it was an awesome surprise and we are still talking about our adventures.
We came home for the most important day of the week. The one in which I celebrated turning 40. I actually don’t turn 40 until this week (more on that coming as well), but Ryan planned a small gathering of dear friends and it was so wonderful to look around the room and see all the people I love in one place.
I was happily upstaged at my own party by another birthday girl. Our foster baby’s parents, who have become lovely friends, brought her by to say hi. She turned 3 on Friday and it was amazing to see her thriving. While our immediate family has spent time with her, Ryan and my extended family has not seen her in over a year since she left our home. What a blessing it was for them and all our friends who spent so much time praying for her. The highlight of the night by far. God is so very very good.
I spent most of today reflecting and basking in the glow of last week. This week offers a small reprieve until we are off and running again on our next adventure. We will throw in a few more birthday celebrations this week because I like to milk my birthdays for all they are worth. You only turn 40 once so I think it is more than called for. Don’t you?