Okay - van update first. We got it back yesterday, and it runs quite nicely now! God really has worked out all of the details. We were able to get no-interest credit with the dealership that allowed us to pay for the van without waiting for the money to come in. But, we do know where the money is coming from. Doug has a 401K with UPS that doesn't have enough money in it to remain active. So, he has to cash it out. It was originally going to have to cover other things, but God has covered those things in other ways, so we can use it to take care of the van repairs! I was struggling for a while with the idea that I wanted God to do something huge and mighty to show His hand in all of this, but He's reminding me that more often than not He works through the simple and everyday things. That's why we miss Him so many times. He's reminded me that my job is not to say, "See what incredible things God does." Instead my job is to help people see how He works all around us constantly, helping them to recognize His hand more clearly is our everyday life. I love the way He so sweetly and gently steers us to open our minds when we have our tightly kept preconceived notions about how He's going to work!
Despite the stress of the van, this has been a good week for us. I sat down on Monday and created our daily schedule. Some of you will laugh at me, others will reiterate the idea that you think I'm so organized, and others of you will say, "But of course you did! Isn't that what everyone does?" :-) I think it's the only way I can actually stay caught up with life without being bogged down by it. The big picture overwhelms me - housekeeping is an impossible task; looking at a pile of books not specifically included in a step-by-step curriculum (or looking at a stack of KG books that I have no curriculum for!) makes me feel so inadequate as a teacher; looking at the number of things that still need to be done as we continue setting up the house makes my head spin. I have to break it down, to see it one step at a time. I can't look at the elephant, take a bite, and be encouraged that I'm going to be able to consume it all. I have to cut the elephant into manageable segments and focus on one segment at a time until I look up and realize the whole thing is gone!
So, that's what I did on Monday. I made a daily schedule and also made a to-do list of those extra things that don't fit on the daily schedule - finishing school planning for the year, hanging curtains, organizing my sewing area, making a giant stuffed Larry the Cucumber for Steven's upcoming birthday, etc. We started school and the extra list on Monday and then began sticking to the daily schedule on Tuesday. It's made a difference! As you can tell, I haven't done a whole log of detailed blogging this week because I've been trying to cram as much school year prep and Larry sewing into free spots as possible (gotta get those done - birthday party is Saturday and the planning has to be ready to put into action on Monday!). But, once I get those highly time-critical activities done, blogging will have a time slot again!
Okay, so maybe those are more my thoughts than details about the family, but they really are relevant. The kids have been so much happier this week! Steven's had his ups and downs while he's chewed on his fingers to work on that last tooth. But, overall it's been much more peaceful around her. School has been good this week. Angie finally decided she was willing to sing the silly song I made up, and with the help of that song she got the short "e" sound figured out! God has granted me wisdom to help make addition and subtraction problems less of a torture for Olivia (she's good at them, but they bore her so she doesn't focus on them!). I've been able to create a music and art appreciation program for the year based on two books we have, so I can use that until I can find sources for borrowing (or funding for buying) books from the incredible list my friend Joanna created for me. Steven is learning the short vowel sounds right along with Angela, and he showed this week that he can definitely count to ten! All in all, a good week.
Now I must get back to the day - laundry awaits!