Friday, November 21, 2014

He's Done. He's 18.

People are always telling parents how big their kids are getting and reminding them of how few years they have with them, etc.  I think the intention is to make them appreciate the little time they have and just how quickly kids grow up. 

It's true, the time goes by fast- it seems like just yesterday that we brought Harrison home from the hospital.  We thought for sure someone would notice we had no idea what to do with him.  Then soon enough he was riding a tricycle, and later wore a wet suit everyday just because it was awesome. Before we knew it he turned 10, and a couple years later picked out his own cloths at Old Navy- dark jeans, an argyle sweater and a tie. 

But other events seem like a hundred years ago- like when he refused to eat anything that wasn't white unless it was a hot dog, or when he pooped in his underpants for six months after potty training. 

Fortunately he now eats anything- even beans and ketchup if he must, and is fully potty trained. He can even do all the things that I stressed out about, like read and write.  He has other skills that just happened along the way. He can make a sandwich, dress himself, do laundry, drive a car, and make friends! He's fully cooked, my job is done. 

Happy 18th Birthday Harrison Tennessee Stanley!

I'm pretty excited about this new phase of life.  He's still in high school so I can't drop all the rules right away, but it's fun to not have to "make him obey" my every command.  He knows what we want for him and from him.  He knows what we think and believe.  I love to hear about his ups and downs and cheer him on.  He is his own person, and I really like him.

The new question we get is, "What is Harrison doing next year?"  What you really mean is, where is he going to college?  My answer to you is,  we don't really care.  I know this sounds a bit lackadaisical but we believe the next few years will be about learning to work and pay bills, manage his own life, build friendships, and work on his comedy routine. 

And, ya, he's going to college.  He'll be living at home with us for at least another year though because he likes us and doesn't want to start life with a bunch of debt. 

I'm happy with his choice.  Keep making good choices Harry.

Monday, November 10, 2014


I read this blog post last week and I can't stop thinking about it (thank you Tisha for putting it on FB. Mom, read it).  It got to the core of one of the things I've been wrestling with and that is, the idea that God shows favor to one person but not another and if we can accept that everything good comes from God and that He is in control of everything, don't we also have to accept that He's in control of all the bad stuff too (and why doesn't He do anything about it)?

I've been guilty of misusing the word Blessed as in, "Thank you for all the blessing you give us." This is a part of my prayer that I say before meals and at bed time.  While I am very thankful for all that we have- our house, our stuff, our car, our money- I can't believe I have these things because I've been "good" therefore God loves me more than he loves a single mom who's had an abortion, is sleeping with her boyfriend, is on welfare, and has a crack addiction.  While it's true that we are blessed, it isn't with stuff. We are all worthy of God's love and blessing.  All of us.  ALL of us. (Read the beatitudes.)


I've begun to see myself as Pre and Post-Royal.  He and his sister (but mostly he) rocked my world to the point of shifting my world view.  I've said this before but, the Pre-Royal me was a homeschool mom, a "good" wife, had a clean house, had all the answers, loved Jesus with joy and thanksgiving. That was my identify. I felt safe, in control, yet (I'm not sure I recognized this) fearful.  I feared what the world may do to my kids.  I feared that they would turn away from God if I let them go.  I feared Truth would crumble if I didn't hold on tight.

I feel like gagging just thinking about it, and kind of embarrassed sharing this.

The Post-Royal me sends her kid to public school (public was once considered evil- I cringe),  has her high schoolers ride the city bus with prostitutes,  listens to the hip-hop station with them, swears in front of them, and argues with her husband (okay, so this one isn't new).  During the last three years I lost my self created identity.  All the things that made me me went away and left me scrambling (and saying, "What the F*ck!" in my head quite often).

The good thing about letting go of that other me is that I feel light and true, as in not false, not fake, not controlling, not contrived.  I don't have the strength to control all things and hold it all together anymore.  "It" is heavy.  "It" is suffocating.  Writing that reminded me that Jesus himself said, "My yoke is easy, my burden is light." (Mathew 11:30).  I choose His burden. I choose freedom. 

I've told this analogy to a couple people already, but I'll share it again here because it's spot on. You know King Theoden in Lord of the Rings? He was the one who turned gray and scaly because Wormtongue was whispering lies in his ear.  As soon as he was free of Wormtongue he became young again and could think again.  That's how I feel these days.

#broken #idonothavetheanswer #strugglingasanadoptivemom #mytoiletshavepinksliminthem #wedontdofamilydevotions #idontcare #blessed

Sunday, October 26, 2014

In My House You Will Find...

In my house you will find
(At least) one dirty sock in each room
A bin of 20ish single clean socks in the basement waiting for a partner to show up
A chewed piece of gum stuck to something
An empty beer bottle in a bathroom trash can
(At least) 30 books that have only been half read
A Tupperware in the fridge with something we ate over a week ago (and will never be eaten)
Large amounts of clean and dirty laundry, rarely in its proper place
A person teasing, a person crying, a person denying
Sometimes this is all the same person
4-9 varieties of cheese
1-8 pounds of butter
A panicked woman when the butter supply goes bellow 1 lb.
Pee on the bathroom floor
Recycling, yard waste, and garbage that needs taking out
A person on an electrical game device
Another person petitioning to use an electrical game device
10 or more pairs of shoes by the front door
Less than half of the shoes are on the provided shoe rack
A dinning room that looks like a school room
A guest room that looks like a TV room
7ish bags of chips on top of the refrigerator
4 bags are open
2 are the same kind but someone wanted new before finishing old
A mother who is irritated by the lack of eating old before starting new
A cut out of Nicholas Cage's face
A bed with two weeks worth of dirty laundry shoved between the mattress and the wall
Several food wrappers hidden under couches and beds
A mismatch variety of Tupperware despite ones effort to store lids and bottoms together
A dog who refuses to eat his dinner unless he's starving, being hand fed, or eating human food
A family who accommodates the picky dog because he's so dang cute
A mud path to the trampoline despite ones best efforts to plant grass three times a year
A sock or two stuck in the mud of the path
A healthy population of fruit flies by the yard waste container
One rock painted like a cat, another painted like a lady bug
Music playing in the kitchen 80% of the time
A pair of Cars sunglasses, three hot wheel cars, a princess wand and a crown that never seem to get put away
4 decks of cards in the kitchen and 2 in the dining room, all missing one card
A glass of ice water melting on the counter
A ripstick, a princess bike, a balance bike and several helmets on the front porch
A boy playing the piano - the same three songs over and over again
A pencil on each table
Somebody wanting a snack
Somebody needing a ride
Somebody wanting to talk
Somebody needing their space
And not usually, but at this moment, dirty socks on the counter.

An unusually clean school/dinning room
Lamest game device ever- keeps Hermon entertained in his bed each morning and night
My attempt to make sense of life- and a few page turners (please send me some page turner titles! No self help books please)
Queenie McBear making Little House salt pork and gravy
My hippie driver. He can't cut his hair until the play is over mid-December...

My Precious
This made me laugh so hard...

A little side story about the picture above.  Hiyab was given those gorgeous princess shoes by her friend.  She refused to wear anything else for days.  As you can see, they have very stiff soles and are on the wrong feet.  As she carried her plate to the sink she wobbled on her shoes and fell.  The plate- the last remaining one from our William Sanoma set that my grandmother gave us as a wedding gift 20 years ago, broke to pieces.  It felt like the end of an era to loose that plate, but how could I get upset?  Those shoes! OMG, they crack me up.