I’m not sure whether this week was harder or easier than the last. I can say that this week I was diligent about my news intake, and I highly recommend that to anyone who is feeling anxiety around the pandemic. It’s absolutely crucial to stay informed, but there’s a point when too much is too much.
Speaking of too much, I think we can all agree that 20 seconds is an obscenely long amount of time for anyone to be expected to wash their hands. If this entire thing teaches us anything, it’s that we haven’t been washing our hands NEARLY long enough.
This Sunday our pastor recommended using the 20-second hand washing time to pray or recite a verse. I really loved that, and it’s an immediate change I made to my daily rituals — wash, cook, wash, serve, wash, clean, wash, play, wash, and so on…
Speaking of church, Mary motivated the girls to put on dresses for virtual church (the boys did not participate). As silly as it seemed, I think there’s some benefit, too. This is still church, and if our clothes help us sit up and pay attention, then let’s dress for the occasion.
Our swing set is by far the hardest worker. I’ve noticed that I don’t mind the constant fights about swings if I’m inside listening to a podcast. (Can you see Mary behind the bushes? She’s sitting in a chair reading a book, waiting her turn.)
I don’t think I’ve ever said this before on the blog, but I absolutely LOATHE bouncy balls. I don’t mind slime, play-doh, kinetic sand, but I cannot even with bouncy balls. They’re basically throat plugs and I don’t know why such an obvious choking hazard is in every single treat bag that has ever been distributed to my kids.
Equal and opposite to my despise, my children LOVE bouncy balls. So what I do is confiscate them, then take them on a “bouncy ball walk” through the neighborhood. They bounce the balls, chase them, race them, run around, and by the end of it everyone is tired and crying BUT! All of the bouncy balls are lost forever. We love it.
On one of the colder days this week — reading in a messy house with a side of laundry.
The azaleas are blooming. Spring is coming, renewal is happening. Just like God promised.
Thomas was pretending to be trapped under a boulder. Anna was pretending to be Thomas.
Speaking of pretending to be Thomas…
The kids call this “sun gazing.” I call it, “when they want to take a break from fighting over three swings and instead fight over two chairs.”
Oh look! It’s Mommy! And Mommy is smile/grimacing because she has strep! AGAIN! WHILE IN QUARANTINE!! The doctor thinks I got it from myself — that it was perhaps resistant to the first antibiotic so it came back. That might also explain why I was so sick for so long the first time.
One afternoon I took a blanket and pads of paper outside and let the kids draw while they listened to an audiobook. When Thomas got bored, he just wandered away. (The swings were empty!) The big kids listened for two hours while I weeded a nearby flower bed. A huge win. Maybe it won’t ever happen again, but I’m thankful it happened this time.
Slowly, I hope that my family will chisel out good routines. We’re all taking time to figure out our stride. What works? What doesn’t? What are our values? What needs to be accomplished?
We’ll figure it out. It will take more than two weeks.