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Stumbling in – with a Smile and a half decent glass of Champagne

1 Jan

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That’s it!
We’re in!!
2014….

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For better, for worse, there’s nothing we can do about it… let’s stumble into it together, hand in hand and holding tight to the Saviour and Lover and Creator of each one of us.
After all he is the beginning and the end, and everything in between.
He knows all that we don’t yet know.
The good, the bad, the ugly; the triumphs and the sorrows.
So let’s stumble in, trusting that He has enough grace for us to face everything He has planned for us…and to be victorious in it all.
I, for one, am excited…
First stop: Australia, for two weeks holiday in the sun with one of my all-time besties…. Can it get any better!!?!

We think, quite possibly, not.

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A Sunny, Outdoor Kind of Week End

17 Feb

The sandpit got its first “outing” of the season! They spent hours in there, digging trenches and pouring water into them and building mounds for Lego forts and cars. The stuff boyhood is made of. 20130217-201236.jpg
Thomas climbed into the bottom part of an ancient cider press using the dog’s lead as a climbing rope…
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…then decided it was all too much hard work…
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A more (and rarer) civilised moment for Tom
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Sam, on an outing to Looe in Cornwall with grandparents, also felt like a little impromptu lie-down. Runs in the family.
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Brothers, contemplating the deeper things of life. Like chips and Lego and Top Gear.
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Scooters and shorts – MUST be summer…!
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That boy is too much of a thrill seeker for my liking
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A little private whisper between daddy and the Middle One. Wonder what he was saying??
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And the last one…not so sunny:
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…those 4 boys sure do make me happy…

Protected: On Dissatisfied Butterflies And Keeping Busy

23 Dec

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Lip Service Nativity

9 Dec

>

ADVANCED WARNING: I think I’ve turned into the Grinch! Again.

(I know, this happens E.V.E.R.Y C.H.R.I.S.T.M.A.S…)

I’m sorry. Nativity plays are cute and that, but they are soooo tedious. So dull…

…Or is that just me…??

Having just come out of Ben’s second Nativity play of his entire life, I am fuming. Seething. Frustrated.

What a farce! What a shame

It wouldn’t have been be so bad if I could’ve seen Ben and he was actually doing something!

Instead I will just remember this year’s play as the one where my son didn’t do anything except sit on the floor in his PJs , with a tea towel round his head, among another 130 kids, being the ‘singing crowd’. He and many of his classmates found it pretty boring as it seemed there were only about 6 children there with main (read: i.n.t.e.r.e.s.t.i.n.g – or FUN) parts.

The “singing crowd” weren’t even prompted to STAND to sing their songs for crying out loud!!

How unfair. How frankly stupid

The little glimpses I managed to catch of Ben, from my cramped, tiny, child-sized seat 4 rows from the back, only served to reinforce the feelings I already had as I had walked into the school hall earlier… His little face was almost exactly what you would draw as a typical caricature of a tired, bored, SAD face. His eyes, each time they caught mine, were pleading with me to take him home.

I would really want to be able to look back one day and think of my children’s school Nativity plays as LOVELY and MEANINGFUL but I don’t think that’s about to happen. To me they’re just paying lip service to an event so amazing you can hardly put into words –  they just make me angry. And Incredibly Frustrated. (Did I say I was frustrated!?)

Every so often I come across a deeply meaningful nativity play, like the one Ben was involved in last year in Reception… Or the ones my Thomas takes part in every year, at his “special school“… Or the ones produced by Out of the Ark, who are a Christian-based primary-school-production company. If done well and your kids are properly involved, then sure they can be great.

But mostly, the experience I have had of them over the past 10 years have brought out irritation and cynicism in me and made my skin crawl.
And yes, for certain things I am a self-confessed, unapologetic Grinch.

Just sayin’…

because I’m worth it…

9 Aug

>We are sending our eldest son Samuel to a Scripture Union holiday this summer for the first time. In fact – he should be there by now; Mr Wibbs was dropping him off as I think I would’ve found it a little traumatic, to say the least…

The way this opportunity became available has God’s fingerprints all over it.

At the beginning of the summer holidays, or rather two days into them, I was already crying out for a break from Sam. He was going round in circles, constantly bored and at a loose end; and driving me and his little brothers nuts in the process.

One evening I went for a walk alone, as is my wont, and I cried out to God. I then sent a few texts round asking for prayers. Mum soon phoned me in response (both our sets of parents are such a godly, wise support for us…even though we are sometimes not so gracious in receiving their advice and counsel…); as we chatted it became clear that I was going to have to think of a way to send Sam away in the summer holidays, at least some of the time, ie a week or so, so that he could be with kids his own age, experience something different to home/school life … and also so that I wouldn’t go completely insane trying to keep him occupied for six whole weeks.

(and yes, that sentence was too long.)

Dad immediately started looking online for SU holidays, just to see what was ‘out there’. Just out of interest. Just in case maybe, just maybe, there might to be something Sam might be able to go to THIS SUMMER… A link to this holiday arrived in my inbox less than 15 minutes after I’d finished talking to Mum on the phone, and less than 24 hours later, the booking forms were in the post with a cheque…!! The holiday seemed a perfect fit for Sam: a week-long adventure bible ‘camp’ for 8-11 year olds, AWAY from home, a really decent price (£158 all-inclusive) and only about 45 minutes drive from where we live! And the best thing about it?? …there was ONE SPACE LEFT FOR A 8/9 YEAR-OLD BOY.

Perfect!!!
Too perfect to be a coincidence, really.
Which is how I know it was God-ordained; He planned it all.

Because Sam needs this, and it is going to benefit him in every conceivable way, and especially in his walk with the Lord.
I know he will be in good hands and looked after by people who will love him, accept him, and pray for him.

So I can relax and have some ‘respite’ from this challenging little boy of mine, safe in the knowledge that he will be FINE.
Because I need and deserve a break.
Because I’m worth it.

A successful bonding trip

4 Aug

>While i’ve been busy scouring the Internet-based plethora of property-finding search-engines for the last two days, Sam (8 & 3 quarters)……and his Daddy (a ‘tad’ older)……took a ferry across to the Isle of Wight……with bikes and rain coats…as well as swimming gear…!(I know I already posted this one yesterday – but I like it. Ok?)…for a special, well planned out (- by Sam; I mean what do you expect from a child with ASD?!!), father-son trip.

By all accounts they had a super, if exhausting time. I will no doubt hear all about it all later in glorious technicolour from my chatterbox of a son, who will be eager to give me a detailed account of the ice-skating, the visit to the circus, the theme-park, a night at a bed-and-breakfast, gallons of coke and other forms of junk ‘food’; tales of swimming in the sea, of riding bikes around parts of this incredulously beautiful island, and of visiting old haunts…

Me? I was at the other end of the phone, missing them but delighted all the same by this serendipitous bonding adventure.

Aren’t Daddies just GREAT?!!!!

A Good Day

28 Jul

This morning I made cards during a rare two1/2-hour window of blissful solitude…

I know, I probably shoulda been reading the Bible and praying, but my hands needed to create. And so did my brain!! And I feel so blessed, rested and fulfilled from that…
Ah. God knows me well. And He is so patient, graciously waiting His ‘turn’ when I should be putting Him first.

Somehow, making cards recharges my batteries.
…somebody please explain this to me??

Anyway. With Ben at nursery for the day, and my two eldest at Bible Club for the morning, I chose not to rush around and clean or do my grocery shopping, or cook; I also decided not to sleep; unusual for me…

And I think I made the right choice: somehow, I sense God’s approval.

So it’s been a Good Day.
Following my ‘me-time’, I picked Sam and Tom up from HBC, we went to McDonalds, and then we bought shoes ready for the new school term.
Then Sam had an hour of trampolining which afforded me some precious one-to-one with Tom.We picked Ben up, I cooked meatballs and then we all had baths; and I disappeared off to my pilates class while the babysitter put my boys to bed.

Yes. It was a Good Day

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