29 May 2008

Thursday Thirteen - 13 blessings

I am extremely on edge right now. We are very close to moving into our new home and things seem to have stalled. I can hardly contain my frustration. I just feel like I am at the end of my rope! So I wanted to focus today on several positive things (aside from the obvoious) that have helped us deal with the stress of selling and building a new home (which, with 4 kids has been quite the feat).

1) Parent Connection, which is positively #1 on my list. We are very lucky to have this program in our school district. It's the only one of its kind. It allows parents as well as parents-to-be to meet each month with a parent educator, who teaches them about the development of their child/unborn child in utero. There is discussion about what milestones to look for - social, intellectual and physcial. There are activites for toddlers and preschool age chidlren to do while the parent and parent educator discuss any concerns about the child's development. In addition, every week there are playgroups. A classroom full of dvelopmental toys, divided by age group and ability. There are parent workshops... you drop off your kid in the playroom and then you might go learn about what color your children/your personalities are. Or whether or not they have sensory needs. Or all about Love and Logic. Since we moved in to this apartment I have been allowed to bring my children whenever I want to this playroom (which is a Lakeshore mecca). This has been such a blessing. We haven't made it to many of the organized playgroups since moving... the times have not been convenient due to proximity. Being able to drop in whenever I get a chance and let my children burn off some energy before returning to this cave has helped so much!

2)Family, who checks on us often and send small, simple goodies to the children. Checking the mail and answering machine has never been so fun!

3) Fabulous babysitters. I am so, so lucky. I have 2 really responsible babysitters who interact well with my children, and even clean up (including dishes). They are also young (13) which means I have a couple years before they are off the market (at which point I'll be able to take advantage of my oldest).

4) Weekends. My husband has taken me out every weekend, sometimes even twice per weekend, since we moved into the apartment. He can clearly see my need to escape and has allowed me to pick the restaurant or movie just about every time. It really "hits the spot" to get away by ourselves. We have also been more vigilant about spending time together as a family in the weekends, going swimming or out for a drive... it's nice to get out of the apartment but the side benefit is that we are leaning on each other and creating stronger bonds.

5) Parks. Every day after school the kids and I go to a park to run off some energy. We have been to every park within a 10 mile radius, I tell you! At first I kind of dreaded it, but knew it would be necessary to keep the kids' energy levels in check. Now I look forward to trying out a new spot every time, even though we are having temps near 100 some afternoons!

6) Nice beds. We are in corporate apartment, which is fully furnished. The beds here are nothing short of luxurious. Each one has a pillow-top mattress, duvet and comforter, and very crisp white sheets. And although it has taken me a while to get used to (always been a firm mattress girl) I enjoy the feeling of sleeping on a cloud. I also want to make the beds every morning just so I can turn them down (in all their fluffiness) every night.

7) Good neighbors... who despite my worst fears have not complained one bit about my loud, boisterous children. Who regularly jump off the furniture. And cry a lot.

8) Great scenery. I have the best views while I am running. It really is gorgeous here (very close to hill country). If I am lucky enough to get in a run right after the rain, the temperature is even enjoyable!

9) Few commitments. Life is pretty simple right now. Few people know where I am. Lol! Since we are between residencies, I've just taken a break from everything for a couple months. And it's been nice!

10) The excitement of anticipation (second only to anxiety ;), which can be fun. Picking out paint, new rugs, mentally figuring out the placement of our furniture in each room - I really enjoy that.

11) I've mentioned how easy it is to keep a small apartment clean. I'm talking clean in 3 hours, though. Bathrooms and kitchen and vacuuming... all in a few hours! It is bliss! I better gear up for what is to come in an almost 3,000 sq. ft. house! Ack!

12) Stairs. My heart thanks you. :)

(I'm really pushing it, lol)

13) Oh, I cannot forget our new to-be-neighbors! They have seen us come by the house at least once a day for the last 4 months. They always stop and talk to us. We do not even live there yet and feel like we are getting to know them! One even gave me the number of the company he used to install plantation shutters.

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Sheila said...

Great job focusing on the blessings when your feeling overwhelmed!

Nice to meet you. Pretty blog!

I just blogged my first TT post today.

I'm at www.awifeofvalor.blogspot.com

Have a blessed weekend!

Sarah said...

Way to be positive...your new place looks so good...I would be really excited too. You should take pictures of the apartment if you have time. I love you- Sarah

Amber said...

Sweetie, I'd say that is a pretty darn good list to combat the frustrations. Not much longer now!

Yvonne said...

It is so great to focus on the positive.

Isn't it wonderful to know that soon you will be in your beautiful new home. Looking forward to seeing all the pictures.

tjhirst said...

Hang in there. I went through a similar scene three years ago with some nightmare delays (six months longer than expected) and recovery eventually came with a lot of lessons. Great way to make Thursday thirteen in depth. Might have to borrow your idea.

An Ordinary Mom said...

I, too, feel like I am at the end of my rope lately ... at the end of a very frayed and barely tied together rope. And just like you I, too, have been trying to count my blessings. It definitely helps.

Great babysitters who are 13?!? I need me some of those!

Theresa said...

Hi, love your blog, the look is so clean and organized.

I just celebrated my one year anniversary of moving to a new state. It was one of the most difficult things I've ever done.

Now I'm in the midst of planning my wedding. There's always reasons to be blessed.

Chel said...

I loved this! I'm excited to see your new house! Post pictures soon!

Shellie said...

That parent connection sounds so very ,very cool!!! Sounds like some great things to sweeten the frustrating wait.

perilloparodies said...

counting your blessings allows gratefulness to grow in our hearts. here is something someone else reminded me of that helps me through some of the hard times... there is a verse that says that "the Lord inhabits the praise of his people." fill your home with praise and allow him to help you to change the atmosphere of your home, your family, and your heart. trust and surrender is not easy, but so important... and that is from one who is on the frontlines of learning about it. and... congratulations on your new home.