Sunday, March 28

Catching up

Gosh, it's been a long time since I sat down at this computer and typed. Life is busy, and it moves fast. Sometimes faster than I feel comfortable with. The past few months have brought a new insight to my life, and maybe slowing down is the answer. We've made a lot of changes. Mostly good ones, some we'd rather just forget. But all the same, we trudge forward at a steady pace, and hope for a better tomorrow.

This past weekend I spent with Matt at the Annual Homeschool Conference in Peoria. All in all, it was a good conference. Matt learned quite a lot about applying for college, scholarships (availability, and when to start the process of applying), and the whole interviewing process, the right college for you, and so forth. He's only a sophomore, and I thought we were right on schedule with everything, but apparently we are a bit behind in the game. They are now advising that as a freshman, you should start to begin researching.

Matt and I stayed at the Staybridge Suites that is located right across from the Civic Center, where the conference was located. Friday night, I let Matt choose where he wanted to eat dinner, and he (being as daring as I am to try new foods) began looking for a fun and interesting place to eat. Well, he found it. Nestled among many little shops in a strip mall, was a fun little Sushi Bar, that we just had to check out. Very art deco inside, with a very modern feel to it. Sculptural paintings in bright colors decorated the walls, in a very refined and sophisticated way. Each sushi roll was served in a decorative style, and cut into 6-8 slices. Matt and I decided that we both wanted to try each others for variety, so we each ordered a roll, and a soda to drink. Matt ordered the Crispy Dog, and I ordered The Volcano. I believe we also ordered The Ninja. They first brought us each out a bowl of seaweed soup (yum!) and then our platter of rolls came out one at a time. All were simply divine, but our favorite was definitely The Volcano. Each roll was sliced and arranged on the plate in a very artsy fashion, with wasabi and other various sauces drizzled in a decorative style about the plate. Matt took photos with his phone. We ate, and laughed, and talked about how grandma and mom, would love this place, and how his dad would not. I realized for the first time, that my son had somehow become a man before my eyes. He was no longer the child that I had to raise, or instruct. But a companion, and a friend.

I remember when I was 17. My mom and I had been at odds for a few years, and we had somehow drifted apart. Mainly what I am seeing now with Matt at times. Perfectly normal teenage stuff. Although my situation was somewhat different because mom and dad had foster kids too, so my life (and not only my life, but my siblings as well) was somewhat harder at times because we had to share our parents with others, and sometimes it felt as if we weren't as important to them, and that we were always fighting for their attention. We all sort of went off in our separate ways, and did our best to fill in the gaps where we felt void. Well, when I was 17, mom invited me to go to a homemaker's convention, just me and her. We talked, and went out to dinner, and at first it felt awkward, but as the weekend wore on, it became nice, and pleasant, and I still hold that memory dear to me now, as an adult. I see that this past weekend with Matt, was much the same. We learned from each other, and really communicated. We watched a comedian Friday night, and we both laughed ourselves silly. It's definitely a memory that I will hold for the rest of my life, and assume that Matt will too. I'm glad we had the chance to spend some time together alone. The importance of alone time with each other is so vital to feeling accepted within the realms of a family. Whether it's husband/wife time, father/son time, or mother/son time. The time to say: "How's it goin? How's it really goin?" And then waiting for the answer. (I got that from the conference, this past weekend) for any of you who are reading this and attended too. Wise words (or questions) that I never really thought of asking before. Really listening to what the other person has to say. Maybe I will go into more detail, on what that particular session was about, at a later time. I'd like to go through all the sessions with you, just in case you are interested. I find a lot of good information on other people's blogs about homeschooling, saving money, eating healthy, etc... I guess it's my turn to share.

Some other changes: We are dogless (petless). We just haven't had enough time to spend with the dogs, and they were causing me stress by all the messes they were making and so forth, so Scott took them up to Carlock, to an animal shelter up there called CISAR.
They post photos of the animals and find good homes for them.
It's really been a blessing in disguise for us, because we knew we didn't want them to be killed if someone didn't adopt them right away. CISAR is a "no kill" shelter.

My home daycare has slowed down some to the point that I only have 4 kids that I watch, besides my own, instead of 9 that I was taking care of in Jan/Feb. It was really too much, and I just couldn't handle the stress of it all. 4 is pretty comfortable.

I have been using my tailoring skills lately, altering an Easter dress for a lady at church. So I am actually using my college skills, that I worked so hard to pay for.

We are getting ready to start Spring Break, Apr. 4-9. We'll be heading up to Chicago Schaumberg area for Ethan's birthday on the 8th. We plan to visit some museums, and have lunch at the Rainforest Cafe'. They have a very cool volcano birthday cake, that would make any little boy get all excited about. Then of course there's Legoland to consider, and IKEA for me, and of course a HUGE Cabella's store for Scott, and the boys. It will surely be a fun short vacation.

Looking forward to cleaning the family room a bit more today, and maybe getting the kid's to clean their rooms. Happy Sunday!