Friday, March 2, 2012

Setting The Tone

Yesterday I had a few friends over to celebrate Dr. Seuss day a tad early. Though my husband had been gone for 2 days, I managed to have the house all clean, my lessons all prepared, and I was ready to host a fun day of learning! You're waiting for the "but," aren't you? Actually, it all went down as planned. It was homeschooling at its finest!

Both friends have kids 4 and under, so they haven't decided whether or not homeschooling is the road for them yet. I was happy to encourage and give advice. They asked things like how I managed with the 2 little ones. "We just go with the flow," I said with a smile. And, it's true. I answered many more questions and we had a great time, and then said goodbye. I was feeling great. I had even convinced myself that homeschooling was the best! And, that is how I've been feeling, lately! And, here comes the "but..."

Then, last night hit! My oldest lost her 10th tooth! Tenth, and she's only 6! That meant I would have to remember to stay up to play tooth fairy, and I was already quite tired. It also meant I had to help Allison get to sleep because she was too excited. Once I finally made it to bed, the little man had some trouble sleeping due to his second cold. Sniff, snort, snuff, cry -- poor little guy! Then came Natalie; a bad dream brought her to us insisting she sleep in our room. We got a sleeping bag and a box of kleenex and I was hoping to hit dreamland again. That was not to be -- our crazy dog began barking, as he heard the wind coming. He is so crazy; must bark every time the Santa Ana winds hit! Last, but not least, the bloody murder screaming of our dear Sierra. All I know is that she is way overly tired, which makes her sleep worse -- makes sense, right?

All that to say, today started off way too early, (5:30am), and on little sleep. The fun began right away when I decided to take a shower and Sierra decided she would feed the fish. Here's the picture:

Next, as I was cleaning the fish, Sierra was upstairs with her sister and I found this:

You're not suppose to smile when you're naughty, stinker!

Oh, this is just a glimpse. There was lotion all over. And, it happened 2 more times today... TWO more times, despite a spanking and a very aware little girl apologizing. Hmmm... we also had markers all over, floss pulled out, chapstick all over the face, and... yes, it was one of those days!

School still happened. I'm not sure how, but it did. We didn't get to read, but we made it through everything else. Was I patient? Not really. Did I laugh about how crazy it was? I tried, but I couldn't. What happened to "Go with the flow?" What happened to my clean house?

There was fighting and arguing today. There was mess-making and crying. It was a tough day for me. I felt like I couldn't give the love that everyone needed. It was ugly, and not the perfectly planned day I like.

I put the kids to bed by 6:45pm, then came downstairs to process. Oh, the joy of a quiet house! Thinking back over the day, I can see a few things that make me smile. When we first got up and I was in bed surrounded by all 4 kiddos, Allison pulled out my "Jesus Calling" devotional, asked the date, and began to read. Thank you, my sweet child! God knew I needed to start the day with those words! After lunch, when I was about to pull my hair out, I decided to turn on worship music to clean to. Oh, how worshipping our Savior can refresh a frustrated heart!

I was listening to a broadcast from "Focus on the Family" a few weeks ago, and it was a mom talking about raising kids. One thing she said that really struck a chord with me was that WE, as mothers, are the ones responsible for setting the tone for our family. I
love these people:

But, they are not the ones to set the tone for our day. It is up to me, when they have the grumps, to turn on that worship music. Lately, Allison makes a funny face at me when she's mad where she puckers up her lips. I smile and ask if she wants a kiss? It often makes her laugh and changes the mood in an instant.

Part of today I was successful at this. Part of today, I failed miserably and let them dictate the tone. I am learning. I know this will not be my last tough day. More are to come. Yet, even as I write and look at these sweet faces, I am reminded that there is humor in all this. I will look back one day and laugh as I tell Sierra what a stinker she could be. And, I will continue to be humbled and brought to my knees, asking God to please help me set the right tone!

I'm off to bed now -- so tired, I hope I'm even making sense! Pictures of our fun Dr. Seuss day to come!


Darcy said...

oh. my. dear. Those days! What a great reminder about setting the tone. That is so very true! Hope you have lots of sleep and a very relaxing mess free weekend!!

mel said...

Thanks for the reminder that even in the midst of life's messes and hectic schedule to find the grace/strength that we need from God to have the right attitude in everything...because the kids are watching and learning from us even when we don't realize it...

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