1. Ah, Friday again. Today I am especially excited because hubby will have a 3 day weekend due to President's Day on Monday!! Hooray! I so look forward to these. There's just something about the extra day with daddy that livens up our house. We don't have much planned right now, besides a Marriage Course to speak at on Sunday morning, so we'll see what we end up accomplishing around here. One thing fairly high on the To-Do List is finishing our taxes. We started them last weekend, so hopefully we can put the final touches on them and call it good. I know Reed would like to get back to working in the basement again. He's been slowly working on hanging sheet rock and other things down there, not so much to completely finish the basement, but just get it to the point where it's a bit cleaner/somewhat finished. It was probably late fall since he was last able to have any amount of time to putter down there. He's deserved the break though, especially after all the work he put into finishing a room down there to make our school room!
2. Lily has been invited to her first birthday party on Saturday. It's just a few hours and it's only with the birthday girl and two other girls their age and it's at the home of a family we know from church. Not a big deal, I know. But for this mommy, it's been tough. Earlier this week I was having such anxiety over the whole thing. I realized that the anxiety was stemming from my own fears and insecurities. I know that Lily will be fine and will have a lot of fun. That wasn't really the issue (ok, it was a little bit). Part of my concern was coming from the thought of my 'baby' being away from me for a few hours WITHOUT ME. You see, she has only ever been with relatives when Reed or I couldn't be with her and when she's been together with friends, it's always been when I've been with her and us mommy's have been in the next room chatting. I was also concerned that she'd feel like an 'outsider' since she's homeschooled and the other girls are not or that she'd miss me/need me and I wouldn't be there. But I've realized that I have to let her go because it's best for her. If she needs me, I will only be 15 mins. away and will gladly go get her. It's part of learning and growing up and I have to let her do it, no matter how tough it may be on me. I can't keep her from things she'd truly enjoy due to my own fears and anxieties. Rest assured, tomorrow I will be eagerly counting down the hours until I can go and pick her up and see that everything turned out just fine and she had fun, without me.
3. We are scheduled to speak at another Marriage Course on Sunday. We managed to commit ourselves to several courses in the next few months, but then we should be done for awhile. We began our speaking a couple years ago and only did our own personal witness to NFP in our marriage, which is only 15 mins. at most. Last fall we began the sexuality talk, which is 1 1/2 hours long. Definitely a difference! As I have been brushing up on our witness for this weekend, I've noticed that my couple of note cards for this are nothing compared to the pages required for our other talk. We've enjoyed this ministry and helping out as we are able. I also realize that there may come a day when our home is filled with more children and helping out may be cut to a minimum. I think that we'll also have to do some more praying on the matter, but after our next few commitments to the NFP witness we may have to step down. At least for a little while. Not because we don't like to do it, but because of our own struggles with infertility. It has been 2 1/2 years of trying. As time goes on, it may be difficult for the engaged couples to whom we speak to identify with us as a couple practicing NFP and yet who are deemed infertile. We openly share this now with the groups that we present to and we do honestly share with them how long we've been trying to conceive this time. For us, we know the benefit and blessing of NFP, but I fear that to those hardened hearts who are less willing to hear the truth, they may see the 'benefits' of us being infertile and not 'really' having to follow the rules of NFP. Again, we still need to pray a bit more and hopefully things will turn around in the meantime. Unfortunately though, if they don't, my heart will break again as I have to give up something else because of our infertility diagnosis. But for now, we'll press on and pray for open hearts on Sunday morning.
4. On Tuesday of this week, the kids and I were able to get together with homeschooling friends in the morning to enjoy indoor playtime at a local gymnasium. It was equipped with lots of balls and things to play on/with, so the kids enjoyed it. It has been a long winter here and the weather has been warmer, but nasty with ice/freezing drizzle, etc. in the last week. We needed to get out and the kids needed to see their friends. And mommy needed to see her friend too! After the gym time was over, we went to Pizza Hut and our oldest girls (both in Kindergarten) used their Book It certificates for pizza. It was a short adventure, but I was so grateful for the conversation and the good time. Once again, a reminder how we all need it and I need to schedule more of these and get some Mommy's Day Out planned with a friend or two. It was also a simple reminder again why I love homeschooling and the ability to be out during the day and yet still be with my kids. I was sure to remind Lily too what a privilege this was for us and it was only possible because we homeschool. I also pointed out how all the other kids who were in school in a building had only been sitting at their desks the whole while we were out and playing and having fun. Ok, so I laid it on a little thick...but still, my point was received.
5. Today is the 8th anniversary of Reed and my engagement. We always try to acknowledge it in some way along with Valentine's Day. I mentioned last week how I was really struggling coming up with gift ideas for hubby and for plans. Thankfully, Reed came up with a plan and arranged for his parents to take the kids tonight. So, we'll be seeing a movie and going out for dinner. Something we rarely do together. Trust me, we both are so looking forward to it!! In honor of our engagement, I'm finishing today's Quick Takes with photos.
This one was taken on the evening we were engaged:
6. Our Engagement Ceremony:
7. The summer before our wedding, building our house:
The day before our wedding (needless to say, our house wasn't ready for 6 more months before we could move in!):
Visit Jennifer for more Quick Takes!