Friday, September 07, 2018

Bad choice Friday

This "tiny human" has been making a series of (almost non-stop) bad choices from the start to the finish of this very long day. To say I'm weary is putting it sensitively. :-) I keep telling myself it's most likely because Papa Bear has been gone for the week, but that is realistically a contributing factor only. Sometimes, we just have a lot built up in ourselves (from stress, chaos, changes, worries, growing pains, etc.) and we just make bad choices. This guy has an impressive record from just the past 12 hours! Drum roll, please... 
  • Poured his tea on the plants because it was "too hot and the plants like hot tea"
  • Peed in a kitchen bowl (outside on the porch) and left it full of pee next to the sink because "it would be easier to clean"
  • Poured his kefir onto the countertop and massaged his hands through it until it was thoroughly spread about because "it feels very nice and I like the smell"
  • Put his banana peel(s - there were 2) and a half eaten banana behind the couch because "it is so far to the trashcan and I wanted to the house to smell good"
  • Took all the pellets out of the pellet stove and put them on the floor because "they need to be cleaned"
  • Dipped his toothbrush in the dog water and then brushed his teeth because "I don't want to waste water" (I suggested the toilet water as an alternative solution)
  • Put my sunglasses on Aberdeen (who promptly ate them) because "the sun is too bright for her eyes"
  • Poured his cup of milk on the plants because "plants like milk"
  • Pulled all the school books out of the bookshelf (a. lot. of. books.) because he was "looking for a pen"
  • Took all the sewing pins out of the my sewing bag because "I needed them". I'm sure we'll find them all again. In the bottoms of our feet. 
  • Took off Aberdeen's collar, twice, because "she's too hot and wants to be naked"
  • Put Lochlan's clothes in the tub with Lochlan while he was bathing because "Lochlan wants cleaner clothes"
  • Sprayed sunscreen all over the inside of my truck (All. Over.) because "it's really really hot outside"
  • Ate a bowl full of ketchup because "it's much better without the hamburgers" 
  • Put Vitamin C powder in the bathwater because "it will be much healthier and make us all feel so much better" 
  • Cut the very nice legs off of his very nice pants because "they wanted to be shorts"
  • Cleaned his bed frame. With his toothbrush. Because "it needed to be cleaned so much better and better"
  • Started a dirt (flinging) fight with Paugie - twice - because he "needed to show Paugie how to fight like a man" 

Ketlon, it has been a bumpy Friday in the decision department for my Mini Mac, but your spark is still bright. And, in spite of a few discouraging outbursts from Mama and whole handful of reminders, you are still full of joy and a bunch of determination. You told me tonight, "Mama, I want to do what is right... sometimes, I just don't know how." Bitty boy, I so completely get it. You want to do what is right and that puts you so far ahead in this game we call life.  

Life is full(er) and we are so much richer because you're in it. I wouldn't trade one day of your bad choices for a day not filled with you. You are unbelievably determined and persuasive and you have reminded us each day of your life that size (or age) does not matter when it comes to how valid your perspective is. 

You love with your whole heart and when you get up in the morning you are ready to embrace everything you can and must. When you got your new shoes yesterday, you took off at a full gallop around the house to show us that they not only worked for you, but that they could outperform any expectations we might have previously had. 

You are strong, bold, and incredibly courageous. You are, also, still a tender, wee boy, with a sensitive heart and when you hurt everything inside of me cries. 

You bring endless laughter to all of us, and everyone who meets you. Your brothers are laughing at your antics if they are not helping you pick up the latest mess from your most recent questionable decision. 

When you met a dog and his master in the woods, the dog was a bit shy and unsure of you (and all your confidence). You knelt down and reassured the pup: "don't worry. We are not bank robbers." The dog must have been so relieved! He quickly warmed up to you and his master was chuckling, as well. :-) 

When we met a small (harmless) snake on the road while riding, you were fascinated! Upon our return home, you told your brothers (who hadn't accompanied us on this ride), "We saw a King Cobra! We are heroes!" They were duly impressed, of course. 

While galavanting about the Peaks, we heard a chainsaw in the distance. I jokingly told you it was a wild chainsaw and you, your brothers and cousins played "Beware the Wild Chain Saws" for another hour or so. Then, as we were getting ready to eat lunch, you looked worried and said, "we should eat lunch somewhere safe, or the wild chain saws will get us." It was only then that I realized you had taken the whole business quite literally. How terrified you must have been! Sweetest boy. In case you read this when you are a fully grown man, wild chainsaws do not actually exist. 

When we were riding in the woods a couple days ago, you heard a cow in the distance and informed me (with some emphasis): "Wild hogs Mama! They are calling to each other to say that we are here and that they don't want to be dinner." So close to being right on, little buddy. 

You are the sugar and spice to my pie. 

You are the butter to my popcorn. 

You are the rainbow to a rainy day. 

Wednesday, September 05, 2018


Sometimes, we seem to live our lives more like shadows. Reflections of what we could be, of what we ought to be. We have the ability to live with clarity in our form and function, in our purpose and value, and with the clear distinction (in our own minds) of what makes us unique and gives us value. We seem, all too often, content to live as the shadows of who we really are meant to be. Maybe we are unsure of our potential, scarred by our past wounds, defeated in our former efforts to live in the brightness of the sunlight; or perhaps we are simply content in existence alone without the risk (and pain - very likely, so much pain) that comes with life lived in determination, hope, (dare I say it?) obedience to what we know to be true, perseverance, abundance, trust, and love.

As my confidence (most probably in the wrong things) has been shaken over the past several weeks, I have realized how comfortable I can be in the shadows. I will not live in the shadows, however, in spite of myself and the epic weaknesses/frailty I now know all too confidently. I know, in my head, whom my strength comes from, and that Truth is (finally) seeping into my heart in a very real way and I find as I stand before the shadow that is myself, I am excited about the clarity of what/whom I (and ultimately we all) should be (in His strength, by His design, and with Divine hope).

These people I call mine know how this is done. They live each day to it's most extreme potential and they inspire others to greatness. I see, through them, the beauty of life lived without fear, doubt, deferred hope, uncertainty (for they are always certain of what they believe to be true :-) and in front of the shadows.

The shadows of the creation (and it's creatures) around us complement, give perspective, give the color it's boldness (by contrast), and remind us that light is potent. 

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

it hurts at every turn. YET!

It's all good. Who are we kidding? It's not all good, by a long shot. Life is hard. It hurts at almost every turn. 

Every day (for weeks), I begin writing again, to share the every day happenings of this magical life, to archive the details that are so important in making us who we are (and are becoming) but are so easily forgotten. And each night, as darkness descends and the stars arise, not a word has been written and the energy inside me is utterly tapped. We have faced a fairly unrelenting onslaught of challenges, and it feels like there has been no short effort to derail us (as individuals and as a family) from doing what we are supposed to do (in life, daily endeavors). Severe head injury, crushed fingers, interrogations from DCS on our parenting of a child with ASD, deaths of animals, nightly panic attacks (Kris), near tragedies... 

YET! We are surrounded by endless beauty and He is restoring our souls, each day. I see kindness and love flourishing in the hearts of my boys, health coursing through their bodies/minds/hearts, raw joy that can not be bottled. I feel hope and I see hope in their eyes each morning when they awaken to discover what this - a new - day holds for them. I see Lochlan slowly, but most definitely finding a little bit more of himself each day. I hold my breath and wait for the butterfly that is cocooned inside his beautiful self to emerge and I wonder what colors he will show the world. I see Kelton pushing against every perceived or imagined constraint (guideline) to understand who he is and how he fits into his world, reaching ever forward to BE and to BE KNOWN. I see Paugie seeking knowledge with a deep hunger, loving others with every fiber of himself so effortlessly, so completely unaware of how he fills the empty cups of the broken hearted/lonely, and how he inspires us all to be kinder and more genuinely selfless. I see Madigan leading so much more by example than by force (finally :-), inspiring his brothers to much greater things than they might consider on their own, and challenging his parents to be better humans in our actions and our words.  

Our almost daily rides together have been a great source of delight for each of us. Lochlan rides Devany and is completely thrilled when he sees Kelton riding Fancy (with Madigan leading). Lochlan feels a particular kinship to Kelton, and I think he feels that this is something they are sharing in together... he looks back at Kelton, particularly when we're trotting down the trails, laughs out loud and it is clear that there is no where else he would rather be. 

Aberdeen, my treasured canine companion, is faithful and devoted and even takes time to smell the flowers! She is truly the dog of a lifetime. I pinch myself. :-) 

And Fancy and Devany... we are rich (and I am most definitely not referring to monetary wealth :-). 

Man and his dog. 

Brothers who ride together stay together. :-) 

Bobbi Devs. Special in every way.

Deedo Dog (Aberdeen :-)

Big brother coaching littlest brother. Melt. Me.

Lochlan checkin' back on Kelton. 

Just a girl with a flower in her hair.

THE Mama H.

Not posed at all. :-) She's just that beautiful.

The hills are alive with flowers.