BIG dreams were what I had for this week of no kids.
You may ask how did a mom with 7 kids, have a week free of any kids for one whole week... well let me clarify that. It was not a whole week... technically it was 96 hours not 168 hours and I saw them every morning at 7 for med distribution, and Tuesday night one slept at home because of injury...
Here is my formula for how I scored a large chunk of my week to myself. First, you leave one behind in your home state and travel to a new state 1100 miles away. Secondly, you send another child to sleep away camp for 8 consecutive weeks to serve the Lord in upstate New York. (her choice not mine). Thirdly, you praise the Lord for a new church home, that has an opportunity for your kids to serve the Lord in a mission minded week long camp, and begin making new relationships, in a safe environment,with plenty of supervision, and three meals a day! Score!
Back to the opening statement of this post, I had BIG dreams for this week of no kids. I envisioned sitting alone by the pool, (because I have one of those now) reading, working on my tan, cat napping, shopping (so I could get the lay of the land here of course) and maybe treating myself to a manicure or pedicure, or both.
But the reality is that I did none of those things. I did however work on making our new house a home for our children that were away for the week.
I spent two days touching up paint in their rooms, hanging their photos and artwork and making sure that their rooms were organized the way that they had been in PA. I took great pains to reorganize their dressers and leave notes for them about where things are currently if I moved them. (The notes were really for me because when they come asking at noon today, I will not be able to remember where I shifted things. ) I left them "love notes" on their pillows of their newly changed and re-made beds expressing how proud I was of each of them to stepping out of their comfort zone this week and working for the Lord and about how excited the Prince and I are to hear about all the activities from the week.
I organized and cleaned their bathroom. Which included more painting touch up. ( I have to say Dopey made it easy, his painting skills are improving!) I spent a great chunk of time in the "media" room or kids den on their floor as well, securing the space as the coolest in the house. A room just for them to relax, watch movies, play video games, play a board game, do a puzzle. Hung more artwork, and black out curtains (can't have glare on that big television, #teenageproblems)The house had been empty for a year and when Bryan moved in his focus was demolition, not cleaning so for Bashful, I cleaned away all remnants of bugs, cobwebs, and the like, that tends to send his freak meter off.
As I moved through the house, I constantly kept that washer and dryer spinning, as well as worked on the other areas of the house. I painted the entrance way of the house, and because I had a lot of bleed through under the tape for some reason, I repainted the white areas as well ... painting always makes me want to curse. I continued to remove cobwebs and bugs, kept up with the dog hair and the dishes, stuff that all of you moms out there do! (Dad's too). I continued to organize and reorganize our new spaces, trying to find the best home for our treasures.
In the midst of all this busy work, I prayed. I prayed for friends that lost a loved one recently, I prayed for my kids and their struggles and their adjustment to camp and making new friends, I prayed for a friend that is struggling with health concerns, for another that is struggling with kid issues, I prayed for my family that I miss, and that they would all be so busy at home that they would not be missing me as much as I was missing them, I prayed over the rooms of this house, that they would become rooms of a home, filled with love and life, and that even here in Florida, it would be a resting stop for the weary, a filling station for the hungry, and a haven to those that need peace.
My alone time is coming to an end. As I look back over the week, it is hard to believe that there are still rooms that are in chaos, or at least mild distress. That I did not get to the salon to have my nails done, I did not read that great book, or work on my tan. I am a bit sad that I did not get a nap or 4 in, and that my to do list is some how longer than when the week started. What I am excited about however, is that our house, is more of a home than 96 hours ago. The pieces are all fitting, the spaces are all filling, and the only thing missing is the noise and the chaos of my kids, while we are not 100% there yet... we are in the home stretch, we have turned a corner towards putting down roots, towards securing our position and relationships in this area, and to calling 6114 Cypress Circle our home!
You really can't make this stuff up.