Sunday, August 5, 2012

And the Summer Flies!

It's August!  How swiftly the summer is passing!

Taken in Springfield, MO in early July -- all 6 children.
I'd like to post more about our summer, but for now here is a summary of our activities so far, and a bit of our future plans.

After the children had mostly recovered from whooping cough (which took us into the summer some and was a very trying time), both John and I were feeling overwhelmed with how much there was to do this summer and how little time there was for it.  We wanted to put our house on the market with a realtor and hopefully finally get moved in May or June.  You may recall that we'd put it on the FSBO market over a year ago.  We hadn't had any significant bites on it except people wanting to rent.  We hadn't really gone to much effort to market it since we had various other concerns, so in a way we weren't really ready to move -- although I assure you I am ready to leave this house behind once we finally get there, whenever that may be.  (It's just not a great fit for our family, now that I've given birth to three more children here especially.  Yes, here -- they were born at home, on purpose.  I love it that way!)  Meantime, I will have an opportunity to continue to develop patience and practice thankfulness for my many blessings and contentment in my circumstances, because the whooping cough completely messed with our plans.  We looked at options and did make some significant progress in June toward at least figuring out our needs for a future move, but had to put things on hold once again for the long haul of the summer while John's studies and classes required more than the typical amount of focus.

John taught at a campout in southeast Missouri for a week.  Four out of five days he was on to teach classes for a couple of hours, and the other day to give an invitation, plus on the Sunday before he was scheduled to speak at a nearby congregation.  Not long after that, he took part in a day-long meeting about the family, teaching various subjects related to that.  And these past couple weeks he's been involved in a special annual two-week meeting held this year in Nixa, MO (audio files at the link), giving a sermon about the family and the church (there seems to be a trend toward topics like this lately -- he doesn't always speak about the family, ha) and teaching a class on the book of Daniel for the whole two weeks.  Daniel is a very challenging book to teach because it contains a lot of prophecy, so preparation was quite demanding. In the first part of August there's also a meeting scheduled in Colorado at the group he has oversight of, so he'll be helping out with that.  Add to these things the "on call" nature of his work (which often presents some significant additional work, and certainly did this time), other outstanding obligations, plus the demands of rearing six children, and you have a very busy man and family.  July and the first part of August have been/will be the most intense.  After that, things slow down some before his typical fall work kicks in, which is not usually quite so challenging.

Understand that I'm not complaining.  Not that I never have or never may yet in my worse moments -- it wouldn't be honest to say that.  But that's my humanity in weak moments and has never been my will or my true heart, and I support my husband and his work.  I've supported him in doing it for most of our marriage, in preparing and planning for it before that, and I've also supported him when he chose to do other work instead for a little while.  I believe that a wife should be supportive of her husband's work however she can -- it's part of being a helper.  Busy summers are often part of the work of an evangelist, and that's what my husband does.  There are pros and cons to it, just like any work, but overall I find being an evangelist's wife to be rewarding.  I know that the job is important.  Meaningful things are being accomplished, even if we don't always see them, and even if it's a job like no other and has its own unique challenges.  In this way, it has a lot of similarities to being a homemaker/stay-at-home mom, or a homeschool teacher.   You look to long-term rewards more often than in many professions.  Anyway, that's not the point of this post, so I'm beginning to feel I'm rambling (don't tell me I've been at it a while, ha!), but I just wanted to mention that. 

Anyway, we were able to accompany John to the campout and to part of the first week of the two-week meeting.  I'm glad we were able to go.  The older children have especially enjoyed these times, and overall I think it's been good for them.  We may try to go to Colorado too.

Abraham has been rather demanding most of the summer, I think due mostly to getting used to being so close to me/needy during the whooping cough, plus teething on top of it (he has six teeth currently).  Everything together has earned him the nickname "Two-Foot Tyrant."  He's been a complication in accomplishing things, but he's worth it. :)  
A face we've seen a lot.  Poor little guy.
Between going and coming and preparations for these things, I've been trying to wrestle other important things.  The whooping cough pretty much put us in survival mode for a while (it felt kind of like having a newborn baby all over again, as far as the physical demands, but it was scary on top of it, which is quite draining in itself -- I wonder if it's like it would be having a newborn with special needs involving breathing problems would be), but once we were finally getting more sleep at night, I developed a summer schedule and (eventually -- it takes me a while to get these plans together) an 8-week plan for the key school goals I wanted the older ones to accomplish in what remained of the summer (8 weeks not counting some of the other things we were involved in requiring time off).  This plan runs through the last week of August, and by the start of September I plan to have their goals for the rest of the year laid out (or as far as I can reasonably foresee, depending on the subject).  It's going okay.  It helps all of us to have clear goals outlined in whatever subjects we can, but we do have to remain flexible as well.  Our biggest areas where there are clear goals for the summer are math and grammar.  I left it pretty basic since we have so much else going on right now.  In addition to that, I've been trying to get things better organized around here.  I'd like to post more about that later.  We'll see.


  1. I think I enjoy rambling posts! :) So a different house is postponed for now, I take it? It's no fun to be looking, at least in my opinion. I am decidedly grateful to have been blessed with this house relatively quickly.

    And I understand what you're saying about summer being busy and flying by. As much as I'm ready to be moved and settled, it's a little disconcerting to consider the timing will fall at. . .well, the end of summer and thus beginning of fall and with it all-out school! Yikes!

    About that organization post. . . :)

    1. I enjoyed your update. It's not the kind of update that is glamorous, but it's real and familiar! An evangelist is certainly a job with long-term goals in mind, too. I hope God grants your prayers for an easier housing situation soon. The exhausting actions of moving and selling a house keep me very content with the house I have now. If I had more kids, the obstacle of packing boxes and the business side of moving might not seem as intimidating--as you said, looking toward the long-term rewards. Hang in there!