It is time for the annual A Week in My Life hosted by the lovely Kathryn at Team Whitaker.org. In the morning I’ll post highlights of the day before. Since I realized the link-up was this week a day late, today’s post will cover two days – a peek at Monday and Tuesday. (Frankly, both days were pretty much interchangeable since I have similar routines.) 😉
My daily recaps are here:
I am in a new season of life now. It is one that is giving me a breather from the days when I was surrounded by babies, toddlers and diapers. We said goodbye to diapers over a year ago (Alleluia!) since my youngest is now four.
Matthew, John-Paul, Andrew & Bella
It is the first (and only) year that we will have all four kids at the same school, which means I now have the mornings to myself and it is a wondrous thing! My schedule is still often packed, I do a lot of driving around to pick up and drop off and I miss not going to the market with a costumed super hero by my side but alone time also has its advantages.
My mornings are one of the trickiest parts of the day since I am not a morning person and I have to get up, showered, make breakfast, get the kids up, morning prayers said, kids fed, dressed and out the door by 7:40 AM. Despite my perpetual habit of being tardy, I have managed to get them to school on time every day. Okay, not as early as the days when dad takes them but on time none the less, darn it! (A friend at school asked me how I manage to get everything done in the morning and I am writing a post now with tips on getting out the door on time, which is sort of ironic since it is like me writing a book on how to say no to a slice of chocolate cake.) 😉
Once we are out the door, we head over to school. During the first car ride of the day we say our driving prayer – An Our Father and the Litany of the Rol Family. It goes like this.
- Our Father, who art in heaven…
- Our Lady of the Highways, Pray for us.
- St. Anne, pray for us. (My patron.)
- St. Isabella, pray for us.
- St. Joseph, pray for us. (Brian’s patron.)
- St. Andrew, pray for us.
- St. John-Paul, pray for us.
- St. Matthew, pray for us.
- Baby saints Victor and Joseph, pray for us. (Our two miscarried babies.)
- For all the pregnant moms, especially Elena (my sister) and Amanda (my sister-in-law), St. Gerard, pray for us.
- For all those fighting cancer, especially daddy, pray for us.
- For all our military, especially Uncle Mick and those we adopted, St. Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
- For (insert special intentions), St. Junipero Serra, pray for us. Amen.
After kissing the kids goodbye, I walk over to the nearby chapel to sped a little time in prayer. Since I get my morning devotions through Blessed Is She, my prayer is waiting for me in my inbox. (Although I always feel a little weird… as if the grannies in the chapel will think I’m sending texts and not reading Scripture.)
Normally I’d go take a walk at the beach but the mornings have been super cold. Well, super California cold. Anything below 60 is freezing. Below 55 is a snow day for us. 39 degrees?? Well, that’s just insanity. I have a mound of computer and paperwork to get done so I decide to go back home and save walking for the afternoon when it warms up. I work on some writing assignments and complete some work for my in-laws, in-between washing loads and loads and loads of the laundry.
Around 11:30 AM I need to wrap up my morning work and prep for the afternoon rush. I pick up Matthew at 12:00 PM. We go back home and I make his lunch while he decides which costume he will wear that day. (This guy has more wardrobe changes than a Broadway star.)
Today it’s Spiderman. Spidey and I ate lunch then I threw a few chicken breasts and a bottle on BBQ sauce into the crock pot for dinner. We went back to school to pick up John-Paul at 2:00. From there we headed over to the nursing home where Opa is recovering from his stroke. He lit up when he saw us and chatted about his day while we ate snacks and watched Thomas the Train with him.
Afterwards we said our goodbyes and headed back to school to pick up Andrew at 3:00. Normally, we would pick up Bella with Andrew but she had practice for an upcoming play so I would be back to school at 6:00 PM to get her. Yes, life as a Taxi Mom.
On Mondays we are able to go back home but on Tuesdays we have speech therapy for Andrew so it’s off to the therapist. I wait in the car with the boys. It was cold and gloomy outside and it felt winterish so we listened to Christmas carols and took selfies. 😉
We finally got home a little after 4:00 and the house smelled delicious as the BBQ chicken simmered. The boys did their afternoon chores and had half an hour to unwind and play before we started homework. In the meantime, I tried to get another load of laundry done (I swear, how much dirty clothes can one family make?!) and cleaned up the breakfast and lunch dishes piled in the sink.
Afterwards, I went into the family room to tell the boys it was time for homework and it looked like a tornado had destroyed the place . I
yelled at the boys calmly told the boys they were supposed to play with one toy at a time and not dump out everything at once. My organized boy helped clean immediately, my drama boy did his usual “foot-stomp-that’s-not-fair-dance” and my playful boy pretended he couldn’t hear me.
Eventually, they got everything cleaned up and drama boy calmed down when I told him that I loved the epic battle gear he made for his Angry Birds. He hugged me and said he was sorry for losing his temper. (This boy is so much like me, it’s scary.)
By 6:15 PM, Bella was home (Thankfully, Brian said he’d pick her up after work!), dinner was on the table and homework was (almost) complete. We said grace and enjoyed BBQ sandwiches and salad while each person told us one thing that happened during the day. There were lots of giggles and at least one instance of someone saying “poop” and a sibling yelling, “Mom, he said, poop!” and me wondering when boys get over the fascination of bathroom talk and bodily functions. Eventually the kids were excused and Brian and I have a few moments to ourselves before we start the bedtime routine.
I washed the dishes, Brian read with Andrew, Bella helped the youngest ones brush their teeth and get ready for bed. At 7:30 PM we met back in the family room’s sacred space for night prayer and a decade of the rosary. Some days it is really sweet and it touches my heart to hear their little voices offer up prayers to God. And some days I spend the whole time telling the boys to stop swinging their rosaries or poking their brother with the crucifix. Regardless, deep down I know it is making a difference in our family. The boys are getting a better understanding of God and how He is supposed to be the center of our lives. They are learning to look beyond themselves and pray and care for the needs of others. The older ones are learning to make better choices than the world expects and they are asking deeper questions about their faith and how it pertains to them. We are closer as a family and we are learning to love each other deeper.
There is still the normal chaos and craziness that family life brings but there is an undercurrent of laughter and love for each other and a desire to please God and share his love with others. At the end of the day, that is what really matters most. So tonight I go to bed thankful for what I have, apologetic for the moments where I failed, and hopeful for the new start that begins in the morning.
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