Sunday, July 17, 2011

Tomorrow is the day...

Tomorrow is the day.....the day we've been denying, dreading, crying about, and talking about since February 25th. To fully understand the gravity of what tomorrow means for our family I have to go back 3 1/2 years...

On a cold Thursday night in January of 2008 our front door opened and in walked a family who would change our lives. I will never forget it. We were fast friends...all of us! Their 3 girls were about the same age as Nathan, Emma, and Evelyn and they all loved each other pretty much immediately. We have so much in common - we homeschool our children, have a passion for living our lives in such a way that draws others to Christ, have very similar views on parenting, enjoy many of the same activities, and really enjoy spending time together. Since that night we've spent nearly every Thursday night together at Life Group, most Tuesdays during the school year (at co-op), and many more playdates, dinners, and game nights. They are a huge part of our lives. We've laughed together (and at each other:), cried together, prayed together, hugged, loved, and encouraged. It's been wonderful. In one sentence: We have shared life.

We've known from the beginning that they would most likely have to move away (for at least a year) due to school/job. But we just tried not to think about it. It came too quickly. In February (the 25th to be exact) was when they found out the exact location they were headed - Chicago. We spent the weekend together somewhat in shock...still having fun, but sad on the inside. Since then we have talked about it, cried, and prayed that at the end of the year they could come back here. And now it's here. Moving day is tomorrow. We spent this evening together - having fun and trying not to think of it as 'last' (it won't be - can't be). And not wanting the evening to end, but end it did (although at least it ended on a victorious note with the girls winning Pictionary:).

In the morning we will head over to their house to see them off. I can't imagine the sadness and tears as that moving van drives away, but we wouldn't miss one more chance to give a hug and say "See ya later" (I don't think I we'll say good-bye). I debated over it for a while...I thought it might be easier to stay home...less emotional for all of us...but I think I knew I couldn't really stay home. We are planning to visit them in the fall and they are planning to come back here for a visit or two as well. And summer we will be able to have a huge WELCOME HOME party for them. But if that's not God's will then we will know that He knows what is best and we will trust Him (but please God let it be your will for them to come back!).

My heart aches and my eyes are so full of tears that I can hardly see to type. The last couple of days I have had a fairly constant flow of tears. Tomorrow will be very hard. Life Group will feel not-quite-right. Co-op will be kinda sad. But boy is Chicago about to be blessed!

I'm not sure if my sentences make sense (technically if they don't make complete sense then they can't be considered a sentence according to Shurley Grammar). They probably don't make sense cause they are all a jumbled mess in my heart right now. But I had to share. God created us to live life TOGETHER and that is what we have done with the James family. Sometimes (usually is probably a better word) opening your heart up and letting others in can be painful, but it is so worth it. I wouldn't trade one minute of our time together (well...maybe a minute when the guys beat us at a game or were gloating over a win:) to escape the pain of tomorrow. Because hurting lots means we have loved and been loved lots. And THAT is the 'Spice of Life'.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

It's that Time...

Tomorrow is the 1st day of our new school year. I'm excited, nervous, and full of anticipation of all that's to come. We are starting school early again this year because we'll need to take time off mid-school-year for the arrival of the new baby (same reason as last year:) in January! Nathan and Evelyn are excited to get started! Nate says he is excited to be a 4th grader, is planning to work hard to get good grades, and enjoys school except for math. Evelyn (1st grade) is just giddy about the whole idea of cute! Emma (2nd grade), on the other hand, is not. She really wishes we could wait to start, but I know that when January comes and we get to take a good long break she will no longer be wishing we had waited. :) Molly doesn't know if she's excited or not (it depends on the feelings of whoever she happens to be sitting by at the time) , but life will change for her some too. No more playing all over the house - she'll be contained to the school/family room with the rest of us (at least for the most part...I might allow some unsupervised play in her room for short periods). Maggie's life won't change a whole lot. Naptime will be more consistent now, but she'll still be with me most of the time so I think she'll be pretty content with our school schedule. :)  So tomorrow it's back to early & crazy more lazy mornings and leisurely breakfasts (if you can consider eating cereal a leisurely activity:). I don't feel mentally prepared for this challenge, but God doesn't always equip us before the journey - sometimes He equips us during the journey. So I guess I'll just say "BRING IT"! But don't let the kids hear that...they might think I need an extra challenge or as Brett might say "a character-building experience". :)

Ok, so that is what is going on in the Curry house. is what is on my heart....   I am sick to death of screens (I type this as I stare at my computer...uh....screen). All sorts of screens - tv screens, computer screens, projector screens, smart phone screens, movie screens.We are being bombarded with technology. It's everywhere! Everywhere you look there is a screen. At the grocery store, in the restaurant, at the mall, apparently at gas pumps on the west coast, in almost every room in our house. They are used in pretty much every type of classroom & for every age. I'm not against technology. I don't plan to move to Amish country (although simplicity is very appealing to me). I am not throwing out our tv or computer. I'm not getting rid of my smart phone. But there must be a better balance. We limit the use of the tv/video games/computer games in our home to only a little bit of time each week, but I feel like we need to do more. This topic has been on my heart for a while, but this morning I read an article called "Modern Stress, Technology, and Parenting". It was very interesting. It talked about the effect that technology is having on our children's (and our) brains. The constant use of technology is removing our ability to contemplate and meditate therefore taking away our ability to truly worship. How scary is that?!?! It went much more in-depth, but technology has taken away my ability to remember anything (or maybe that's my children) so I can't remember much else...just a sense of alarm. Then on the way to church this morning I heard a radio interview discussing the benefits (to ourselves, our community, & our family) of not being 'plugged-in' all the time. Last night Brett & I were having a discussion about children & entertainment. I know that children remember things best when they learn it in a fun way. But where do you draw the line? I'm concerned that they/we are being so 'trained' to be entertained that when the teaching method is no longer super entertaining then we lose So we are talking about ways to change that in our home. Not sure how to do that...  Maybe for starters I should get off the computer. :)

Anyway, I need to go to bed. I have to get up early tomorrow. Pray for us if you think about it...  :)