I recently hit my ten year blogging milestone here at This Ain’t the Lyceum. I toyed with the idea of a special post but I’ve done enough reflecting on the past in previous years, so instead, I will summarize February – the month that started with a big, empty calendar and quickly descended into chaos. (For the record, I started this post in February. It just took longer than expected to finish it up.)
To everyone who keeps asking, Teddy is doing much better (and yes even now in March people are still asking- sorry for the delay in updating y’all!!) We were in the hospital for less than 36 hours which may be an overnight emergency admissions record. We’ve learned that Teddy just can’t ride out a stomach bug at home once its been 48 hours of throwing up. He also doesn’t respond to anti-nausea meds (orally or via IV) so he needs the IV fluids until he stops throwing up. We were admitted on a Thursday, home on a Friday night and I still manged to grocery shop Saturday, food prep, and host a small Superbowl party on Sunday.
Monday we drove to Upstate New York for a family funeral. Tony’s aunt died after a long and courageous battle against pancreatic cancer. Despite being diagnosed at stage 4, she fought for almost five years before passing away. Although we had not seen her, or that side of the family for many years, we really wanted to be there. Tony and I lived in Syracuse after our college graduation until right after Byron was born, and we visited the Upstate region at least yearly until about 2009, with our last visit in 2011 for Tony’s grandmother’s funeral. So even though none of the kids really remembered anyone, it was nice to see that side of the family again despite the somber circumstances. We even made a side trip to an art museum in the time between family events. Leave it to homeschoolers to find any reason to make a trip educational. But really, it was either that or sit in the hotel and listen to the kids get really caught up in the Olympics (i.e. lots of yelling about athletes they’ve cared about for all of two minutes.)
Coming home after almost two weeks of sudden upheaval was….mildly stressful. I spent the rest of the week and weekend trying to play catch up. I told myself that the last full week of February would be fine and we’d do all the school work we hadn’t completed over the last multipledaysallmuddledtogether. Even with a couple dentist appointments thrown in there.
But only until Friday, because I’d planned, rescheduled and then tried to regain my enthusiasm for another field trip. This time in my hometown of Lancaster, PA. We were going to have lunch with my parents and grandmother, visit the Lancaster History museum, tour President James Buchanan’s house, and then have dinner with my parents before driving home. It would just be me and the younger three.
The museum was smaller than expected, and we were all dismayed to see more parking by the front door given to “low emissions vehicles” than handicap spaces, but we enjoyed the exhibit about Lancaster through the 60’s (1660-1960), perusing the gift shop (museum gift shops are a weakness of mine- it’s all educational right?!?), and watching the introductory video on James Buchanan, whose sexuality they address right out of the starting gate. Fulton was like, “How many times are they going to talk about this??” two minutes into the film.
But thankfully, the film quickly pivoted to how lousy of a president he was. I mean, you can’t place the full blame of the Civil War on his shoulders but, his inaction and proslavery views certainly didn’t help keep the country together. I hadn’t been to his home, called Wheatland, since elementary school. (It’s a rite of passage for anyone who grows up in the area.) The first floor was wheelchair accessible, and when Edie and my mom went with our costumed guide to the second floor, a separate guide came inside and explained the upstairs layout with pictures to Fulton, Teddy, and I, and answered all our questions. It was really neat.
The next day Tony and I went to a small wedding at church. It was a beautiful Mass and a fun reception. There was a photo booth, so there might be evidence of middle aged craziness….maybe.
Throughout the month we dealt with nursing shortages. Two long time nurses left at the beginning of the month, and no sooner did a few of those days get picked up, then another nurse left. It’s been hard at times, but not impossible. I feel SO GRATEFUL we got the ceiling lift when we did, and that Tony works from home. I know there’s nursing shortages across the board and it’s easier for our family than for others so I’m trying to take it in stride and be grateful for the help we do have.
I still managed to get a lot of work down for my ministry Accepting the Gift (part of which was finally hiring a graphic designer). Check out the new Shop to see some of the new resources and curriculum we’ve got listed.
As I wiped clean my giant calendar and filled in squares for March, all I could wonder was how quickly the empty blocks would fill up. Now to take a breath and get to work on a belated Lent post!!
Kelly, I don’t even know you in real life, and I’m not such a frequent commenter on your ‘blog that I’d say we necessarily know each other. But I just want to tell you again that I, a middle-aged single gal, see in the way you live a life you probably didn’t expect 20 or 30 years ago, a witness of embracing God’s permissive will and continuing to find His grace as you walk through a life you might not have expected. You continue to walk forward, it seems, and I’m blessed to see a witness of perseverance. I appreciate your ‘blog. Thanks!
And may we “merrily meet in heaven” one day ??.
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