Thursday, May 19, 2016

Alarm Clocks and Summer Jobs

What does the fourth part of the day mean when it is almost the end of the school year? When there are only nine more alarm clocks sounding in the morn raising my family to get lunches finished, breakfast set out and coaxing little ones to get dressed?

It means there are still nine days left of school so baths are kinda still needed (even after an evening swim -- which in the summer counts as a bath). It means bedtime should be based on the clock not the sun setting (yeah, trying to get the girls inside at 7:30 p.m. -ish when the sun is out is no fun. By the way, it is 7:40 p.m. right now and the girls are just getting started outside with their dad who just got home from spring ball and running errands. We are not headed to bed anytime soon).

And, that alarm clock comes early on school mornings. I get up first because well, I'm the mom. A martyr-like statement, I know, but, it is the reality of the Adams house. I get breakfast ready, add refrigerated items (cheese sticks) to the lunch (G makes the sandwiches), open shades and blinds, do a pick up of things around the house, then head to the girls' room for the initial wake up call. I put the clothes they picked out the previous evening on their beds. I describe what they have -- typically, 'leggings, skirt, shirt, socks' -- as they are now getting dressed on their own in the mornings. 

I walk out to get my workout clothes on and then, a second wake up call.

Once dressed, hair is finished, shoes put on, breakfast eaten, devotion done ... And they are out the door. And, then, I work out. Then, I ready for the day. 

It all starts with that alarm clock that as the school year has gone on is ringing a few minutes later than those first few days. It goes off at 6:20 a.m. now. The self-dressing helps. The, we don't have to leave for school as early because there aren't too many goings on at G Adams school these days.

Remember, nine more days. Nine more alarms.

Detail. When, I leave for my day, I typically stick my head in my sleeping college-aged son's room (who is home for the summer) to say my good byes. 

But wait, he has a job for the summer. Pause. Praise Jesus. I mean, all of you, pause, get on your knees, raise your hands and praise our Lord and Savior! 

And, that summer job is at a golf course and what time do golf courses open for business? EARLY!!

He has to be there most days by 6 a.m. Yeah, 6 a.m. Before my alarm goes off. Before my last sweet dream of the night has ended. 

The first morning he had that early call time, I got up to make his breakfast. Note, the alarm clock was set for 5:20 a.m. that day. That hour was like a dog hour (or people hour to a dog) .... whatever, it aged me by about 10 years. 

He didn't eat the breakfast. 

Guess what's not happening tomorrow morning. I'm not setting that alarm clock early for sure.

One less thing to do tonight to ready for my fourth part.

Which, I don't have that fourth part yet because I've got twin seven-year-olds playing soccer outside -- sweating buckets in this humidity and they aren't getting baths because it is 7:53 p.m. But, really, shouldn't I bathe them? Or do I do a wipe down.

The fourth part is so close to being a reality tonight. Is there really school tomorrow? Is there a bedtime? Are the clothes for tomorrow already picked? Are the lunch boxes packed? 

 Nine more days. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

BBQ and Back Roads

I left my house house this morning around 8:30 a.m. I needed to get on the road to help my son pack up and move home for the summer after his first-year at college.

I didn't need to meet him until noon, but I knew I wanted to take the long way, the scenic way, the back roads way. I wanted to process this moment. To write that the first year flew by is trite. To write that there were many lessons learned, many firsts would be kind of a 'duh.' To write that I have missed him and cried at night and hurt to hear his voice is my story.

This journey started out as what seemed like a great fit. A small Baptist campus in the middle of Central Texas where I could get to him in about three hours if need be, was an answer to prayers. A place he could play football and a place he could adjust to college was wrapped up at this school.

And, yet, it wasn't a match. He played a lot of downs, caught a few passes and scored a touchdown. He figured out how to switch roommates, grocery shop and go to the doctor by himself. But, it didn't click. We knew it almost right from the start, but we encouraged perseverance. We encouraged the 'college try.' We cheered, we listened, we talked. We texted and Facetimed.

He went two semesters. He made the decision to quit the team early in the spring semester. He figured out how to get to Austin for the weekend. He adjusted to college life. This college just wasn't it for him.

So while I eat BBQ at a local, well-known spot, waiting for him to wrap up his last final of the semester, of the year, of his career at this school, I wonder what's next. My devotions of late have been all about trusting God today and experiencing his filling of me daily. The devotions have been about letting go and really allowing God to fill me with his peace.

Eating this pulled pork sandwich (scooping it out from the bun) and getting the call that he is selling back his last book ..... Those are the immediate next activities. Then, it is driving to his dorm one last time, loading up his car and my truck to drive home and probably paying for a tank of gas for him.

It's taking the quicker, highway route home to a favorite meal and getting some big hugs from his sisters.

Those are today's activities. Tomorrow? This summer? Next fall? No answers because God knows we aren't there yet.

I need to finish this sandwich.

I need to go give him a hug.

I need to tell him how proud I am of him .... he stuck with a situation he didn't really like, but did make the best of it (I mean, Austin on the weekends -- I did that throughout my sophomore, junior and senior years at Baylor).

And, I need to tell him Italian sausage and peppers is waiting for him at home, along with his sisters and dad who are ready to see him.


Monday, May 2, 2016

Spring Ball and Community Swimming Pools

Clockwork. That describes the schedule of a high school football coach. It's not just practice wand film and games in the fall. It's strength and conditioning camp in the summer and two-a-days in August. And, it's spring ball in May. Ahhh, springtime joy. Flowers in bloom, rain showers, white pants and football. Goes together like peanut butter and jelly, right?

Yeah, spring ball started today just like it always does ... in the spring. In May. Yet, I am caught by surprise. So much so, that I had to really think why my husband didn't offer to go to tumbling class tonight so I could come home after work and make dinner. Oh, that's right, it's May, it's spring, it's spring ball.

All my fourth part planning for the rest of this month -- out the window. Remember, the schedule is the same every year, yet every year, I kind of forget. It may have to do with the fact my son doesn't play high school football anymore so I really don't need to know the schedule. I mean my husband doesn't really know my work schedule and what I do all day in meetings and calls.

Thankfully, there is only one soccer practice left and a handful of tap classes. I don't have to figure out those schedules. Easy enough for me to get to ... I do it during the fall and the winter and early spring. But, it's spring ball.

Maybe, because the school year is winding down, I think there shouldn't be any new activities. Nothing should be added to the schedule that doesn't require sunscreen, a beach towel and a bathing suit. That's where the neighborhood swimming pool comes in. Yes, we can go in the evenings and the weekends. It's warm enough with a bit of sunshine for me to get a base tan. It's cool enough that we can walk to the pool and back home. It's spring.

Spring ball is only four weeks and it is capped off by the spring game. Then, school is really almost done and summer is really almost here.

Swimming can happen every day with just a sprinkling of strength and conditioning camp. (I think he told me he only has to work one day of camp this summer.) (That's a schedule changer.) (Lots of fourth part opportunity.)