Thursday, October 29, 2009

a little death

That's my picture of the day from the 22nd.

I'm still taking pictures.

But I'm having a hard time being grateful. I try, and I could write a cute little something every day, like the sunsets, the piano, the drawers that have nothing in them in the kitchen. But I don't feel like forcing the smile anymore. I recognize the spoiled-brattiness of it all, but somehow that doesn't make it any easier to find the joy.

Here's what I know.

We were supposed to move to this house. It was designed in the heavens. Why? I don't know. I sincerely, truly, honestly don't know.

But I know God is a loving Father. I know this. I have experienced washes of this love, time after time after time. I absolutely trust Him.

Except when I don't.

Everything still feels broken. Leaving my perfect piece of paradise shattered me more than I knew it would. And I knew it would. I knew there would be a mourning process, that losing everything so beloved and familiar would be like a little death. And yet somehow I thought I'd be strong through it all, that I'd be very very sad, but that I'd be strong.

Instead I am petty. I am angry. I am lost. I am worried. I am tired. I am so very very bone tired.

I thought I knew about endurance. I thought I knew about hanging on to the end. This is much harder. Now I know one of the reasons I was inspired to run that race was to understand that some things are hard for a long long long time. Sometimes the end is way farther away than you want it to be, than you need it to be. And somehow, somewhere the strength comes and you make it just that next step. Just that next block. Just that next mile.

The hard thing is that I see no finish line here. There's only the hope that taking on each hour will bring me closer to whatever joy there will be. And the hope that whatever strength I have is enough. I don't think it's enough. Not right now, anyway.

I keep running (when I can actually get out of bed) to the Shoreline Trail. When I'm on the trail, I feel the hand of God. I remember His work in my life.

And on the Trail, I can believe there will be joy again.

I think I believe it.

I'll work on believing it.

But forgive me if it takes a while to write my gratitude posts. They make me want to puke right now.

If you say it's always darkest before the dawn, I'll smack you.) (Or make you read more of my whining.) (And don't worry. I know it really IS darkest before the dawn.) (And I have already taken responsibility for being a brat, so you don't need to point that out, either. I have been very blessed, and I will be sure to be grateful for all of these blessings at the appropriate time.) (And you could say that moving to a new house doesn't really qualify as a real trial. I will agree with you, and point out that I DO know what real trials are like. This doesn't make me feel better, however.)

I am likely to regret posting this in the morning, as I do most things I do after 1:00 am.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Day 11

Monday, Oct. 19
Kate was still home sick. She found an old lettering book from my scrapbooking days and decided to surprise me with a (belated) birthday card.
"Happy Birthday
It has famliy in it so wach for famliy."
"Happy Birthday
You are tuneing 28. I love you. You are the Best mom ever. I Love your food And Dresrtes. Their very good. I now how to right all are famliy's name's. here it go's David Kerri Josh Sophia Kathryn Ben. I Love my Famliy. And I'm sorry thet I Did not eat that much at Brekcfist.
I (heart) my Famliy

I mean, honestly. How can you not love a girl like that? And also, how can I not love that I'm "tuneing 28"?

Wednesday, Oct. 21
More sickness. Really. Ben got sick late Monday night, so yesterday Kate and Ben were sick (although Kate was acting much better. I mainly kept her home because I really think she may have had a flu of a porcine nature, and I thought the school would appreciate her being home until all symptoms were gone.) Today Kate was better, but Ben's worse. And Josh came home feeling yucky and now has the fever to go along with the yuckiness. Poor guy. (Poor me.) (No, I really mean poor guy. I'm doing OK.)

So today I'm grateful for medicine. My picture of the day just captures a few of the over-the-counter remedies that are getting us through the swine flu (or other virus of like nature.)

Also, I was gifted some of the most amazing cookies today (thanks, Bishop Anderson!) for my birthday. Oh man. I didn't know about Cutler's Cookies. And now I might wish I still didn't know about Cutler's Cookies, because my lack of much running means I'm getting flabbier than I would like. But the chocolate marshmallow and the chocolate mint cookies? They might be worth getting flabby for. Or not. I can't decide.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Just Wondering

Do the rest of you feel your brain turning slowly slowly slowly excruciatingly painfully uncontrollably to mush by 3:00 pm?

Or is that just me?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Day 10

Saturday, Oct. 18
Josh has been playing soccer in Bountiful since May. We thought it would help make the transition to Davis County a little easier for him in case the move happened. Saturday was the last game of the fall season, which will be a relief in some ways, but sad in others. Four days of soccer a week is a bit much, especially when some weeks included two games in North Ogden, about 55 minutes away, but Josh is always happy to play soccer, and he'll miss it until indoor begins in February. We haven't all made it to all of Josh's games, but Saturday we all went, and brought Will, Abby, and Ezra with us. They stayed with us Friday and most of Saturday while Eric and Christina (and Evy!) were in Seattle. I liked this picture of David and Ben and the way it captures their sweet relationship.

Sunday, Oct. 19
My parents came back to town, just for one night. After church today, I begged everyone to go back to the Bonneville Shoreline Trail for a walk. I ran there yesterday, so that makes three days in a row for me. I think it's my new happy place, and I have needed one desperately. Gorgeous, peaceful, wonderful. We were the only ones on the trail except for a little snake.

Also, I bought a piano on Saturday. (YES!!!! It's very exciting!!!! Details later...)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Day 9

Friday, Oct. 16

It's been an embarrassment of riches on the family side of life in the last week. We've had so much time with so many people we love in the Youngberg family with the Utah Youngbergs and visits from Mom and Dad, Steven, and now Chad. Chad decided to come up to Utah to meet baby Holden for the first time and to check out our new house. Chad is very loved at the GreenHouse, thanks to his patience, his willingness to play game after game after game with a six-year-old, and his good humor, among so many other fantastic qualities.

After a fun time throwing paper airplanes down to the basement and off of the deck, we decided to take a walk on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. I'll post about that later, but it was ridiculously beautiful.

So today I'm grateful for my brother Chad and the happiness he brings into the lives of all of us.

Also, I made some fantastic brownies.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Day 8

Wednesday, Oct. 14
We got booed, but in a much grander fashion than we have ever been booed before. This Halloween cone-of-delights is cool way beyond the photocopied picture we used to use back on Grandview. Sorry Grandview peeps. I didn't know that my white copy paper was so lacking until now.
(Don't know about boo-ing? Just a fun neighborhood tradition around Halloween where you get treats, a poem, and a ghost of some sort dropped off at your door in classic ding-dong-ditch style. Once you get booed, you have to stick the appropriate ghost picture on your front window to alert the neighborhood that you are popular, and then you choose a couple of neighbors to boo, thus ensuring that every neighbor gets a chance.)

Thursday, Oct. 15
It's my birthday. I'm 38. Yes, I am, and there's nothing I can do about it.
Yesterday I picked up David for more hours of piano shopping fun. He got in the car, looked at me funny, (I thought he was going to say how cute I was. I honestly did.) and said, "I've never seen that wrinkle there!" Nice.
Piano shopping on my birthday was the best part of the day. Also, Krisa brought me balloons. I loved Krisa's balloons, her visit, and her earlier phone therapy session. Friends are amazing. So I think that I'll give thanks for my friends today. This picture is of me opening my presents (my real present is a piano, but David did get me a sweatshirt and some treats. I was not expecting anything. Ben did not want to take a picture.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 7, and the First Pictures of the Day

Today I'm grateful that Christina has started me on my picture of the day extravaganza. I've loved her project. She has a simple photo album with sleeves for pictures and for journaling, and takes a picture of whatever she feels like each day. It's so fun to glance through her album and see life in all its variety. She gave me such a thoughtful birthday/moving gift last week to help me on the way to make my own. And perfect timing, too, since I've been wallowing in the negative. It's been good to have a companion to my giving thanks series. This is life, too, in all its messiness, and I've been needing to find things to celebrate. Or commemorate, anyway.

Here are the first pictures of the day, starting with last Monday. I missed a few days. Too bad, so sad.

Monday, Oct. 5
First day at the new schools. Perfect looks on both of my sweet girls' faces.

Thurs, Oct. 8
I got bangs. And I look old. The bangs I like. The looking old I don't.

Friday, Oct. 9
The beginning of putting together IKEA furniture. Ben loved helping David. LOVED helping. I'm not so sure it was really helping, but he sure had a blast.

Saturday, Oct. 10
Ummm...Yeah. That's all I have to say. Oh, except that moving is really hard. And really messy. For a really long time.

Sunday, Oct. 11
My brother Steven came to visit on his way home from his spring and summer dog mushing in Alaska. Steven is hysterical. I love his wolf/dreamcatcher sweater. It was a gift from a dog-loving tourist.

Monday, Oct. 12
Mom and Dad came overnight before a trip and we had our first family party in the new house. We all ended up in the kitchen. And we all fit! Amazing.

Tuesday, Oct. 13
The view from the balcony at night.

It's so good that I have these little distractions. Otherwise, this post would have been about my run this morning (passed 3 people walking their dogs and a couple running. No one said hi back to me. BUT, the dawn was gorgeous over the fall colored mountains), the way I backed into the garage door while I was rushing out to take late Sophie to school (I wish I could blame the slow garage door, rather than my obvious oblivion), how I got to pay $62.10 to have someone fix said garage door, how I wasn't able to accomplish much of anything around the house despite valiant efforts (my valiant efforts seem to be fruitless), and how Kate threw up all over the car, garage floor, hall, and bathroom after dinner. It's been a fun day.

Also, I have really nice parents.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 6

I am grateful for my large, loud Youngberg family. I love laughing with them. They are funny and such good company.

We got together tonight to celebrate my birthday because Mom and Dad are in town. It was amazing to see everyone gathered in my kitchen and realize that this is what we wanted to have in our home...a gathering place. It's still far far far from being finished, but we had so much fun tonight.

And I still love Steven's stories about sneaking out of the house dressed as a ninja, stalking the wilds of Yorba Linda. Steven is awesome.

Also, I'm starting a picture of the day project, thanks to Christina. I'll be trying to post these as well as keeping them in an album.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 5

Today I am grateful for the gift of the Sabbath.

Yeah, growing up, Sundays were boring. More rules, less things that we could do, three hours of church... Every kids' dream, right?

But now, I am truly truly thankful to have a day of rest. Sundays didn't feel so restful when I was in the Primary, granted. Meetings don't add to the restfulness of a day. But after a month of non-stop long, hard physical work, I am relieved when Saturday night comes and I know the next day will be about my relationship with God, my family, my church congregation. Honestly, I have rarely been this tired for this many weeks in a row, and Sundays really allow me to have a little time to recuperate before the next six days come to trash me.

Today we had my brother Steven over to hear about his latest summer in Alaska as a dog musher. He stopped in Utah on his way from Alaska to So Cal. The kids did hours of art projects, I made cinnamon rolls. We laughed, we stepped over boxes (AARGH! The boxes!!!), and we enjoyed our time together.

Tomorrow it all begins again. School. Practicing. Lessons. Unpacking. Cleaning. Organizing. Sigh. I wish it were Sunday all over again.

Also, I MUST RUN!!!!! If I'm going to meet that crazy 1000 mile goal, I've got to get out of bed and run.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 4

I am grateful for the knowledge that one day I will not have boxes all over my house.

One day.

Maybe not one day soon, but one day...

Also, I ate Cocoa Pebbles and strawberries tonight.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 3

Today I'm grateful that I get to shop for a new piano. Seriously. It's really cool. And it's all thanks to David and his decision that 18 years has been long enough to wait for a grand. Sweet sweet David. (So I'm really grateful for David.)

But there are a lot of pianos out there...

It's taking more time than I thought it would. I really hope I find one that I fall in love with. It would be fun to be infatuated again.

Also, 3 trips to IKEA in 2 days is a lot.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Giving Thanks, Day 2

Today I'm grateful that tomorrow is another day.

Also, I got bangs.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Giving Thanks, Early Version

I've been a big fat whiner for too long. I had my knock-upside-the-head on the phone with my mom and sister yesterday. I had been complaining about everything to them on Monday, including the sighting of a deer in our backyard. They were laughing at me because instead of saying how cool it was that there was actually a DEER in my BACKYARD, I was saying, "So now I have to worry about deer eating my garden."

So now I'm worried about possible deer eating a possible garden some time in my future? I think this is ironic, since I've only had one successful garden in my fourteen years of home ownership. Who's to say that I'd actually pull off a garden next year anyway? Complaining about possible problems in my future is NOT where I want my mind to be.

On my run today (I HATE RUNNING HERE. There. I said it. I HATE RUNNING HERE. I have to run ONE MILE STRAIGHT UPHILL before I get to a better path, and even that road is hilly) I saw two deer munching on some homeowner's flowerbeds (SEE? The deer are going to eat my garden!) and stopped. We stared each other down as I moved past them, and I thought, "Oh my heavens, I get to see deer on my morning runs! This is cool." And I realized that my trademark optimism needs some help, because that was just about the first time I was really excited about my neighborhood, and that I've been miring down in some deep gloom.

Yes, November is a month away, but I'm bringing back my giving thanks series. It's not as bad as Christmas carols in September. Giving thanks is never really out of style, right?

Today I'm grateful that my mom and Bri could laugh at me and let me see my whining through their eyes. It wasn't a pretty picture, but it was worth seeing.

Optimistic Kerri may return. We'll see. But I'm still mad at that future deer eating my future green beans.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The SECOND First Day of School

We had a second first day of school yesterday. I let the kids have last week off since it was UEA and there was no school Thursday and Friday anyway. This was a good decision, as on Monday of last week, I couldn't find my own head, let alone clothes, backpacks, shoes, and lunchboxes.

So sending my children to new schools...not my favorite. This was the first day of school with the most anxiety I have ever experienced, except when I myself started junior high. I made myself gulp back the tears after I left Josh at the front desk of the junior high after we registered him, looking brave but a little daunted. I've been trying not to let myself get emotional right now. There's just too much to be emotional about. So after I dropped off the girls for their first morning (LATE. LATE!!!! The junior high registration took TOO MUCH TIME and so they were LATE!!!! Those poor girls), I shoved the emotions down further and tried to power through the day.

This didn't work so well. 4:00 found me in my closet (Yes! My new closet has enough room to be a good hiding place! Exciting!) sobbing on the phone to David after the kids came home stressed and frustrated.

I guess it's better to deal with the emotions in the moment.


The orchestra program in the junior high is amazing. Josh is in the advanced orchestra and he said there were hundreds of kids. That may be a (slight) exaggeration, but still! Considering the devastation that was the music program at his last junior high, this is great news.

Kate's teacher was darling and one of the girls she has met on the street is in her class. Blessing. Kate was very very nervous, so this helped enormously. She also made a new friend, and her teacher is great at communicating with me.

Sophie met two girls that she liked pretty well and she saw the boys across the street who have been so friendly to us.

So hooray. I think I'll stick with the positives for today. I could throw out some negatives, but as you know, I'm enjoying bottling up my emotions to deal with later.

In the closet.

About 4:00.

Friday, October 2, 2009

It's Official. I'm a Davis County Girl.

I can't believe I just typed that. It's freaking me out.

(And yes, I know that at 37, I don't really fit into the "girl" category.)

We moved last Friday. I don't recommend moving a family of six less than a week after running a marathon. I do, however, recommend having friends and family like mine, because MAN, they have been REMARKABLE. I have dozens of thank you notes to write. Those of you who deserve one? Let me just remind you that while I'm full of good intentions, it takes me a really long time to act on them, so plan to see one in the next month or so. (Or it could mean you'll get one next year, or it could even mean that I'll find the heartfelt thank-you note I wrote you complete with stamp UNMAILED in another year after that. Yes. It's happened often.)

My friends painted my house, packed my junk, brought me dinners, watched my kids, listened to me cry, told me I could do it, packed up their cars with my stuff, cleaned my house, and loved me even as I prepared to leave them and our little corner of paradise. If I ever find friends half as wonderful in this neighborhood I'll count myself lucky. I wish I could write enough to do their acts justice. I can't. I can only say thank you. You are dear and kind and good.

I like the house. This is good news. I miss my old neighborhood. This is to be expected. I'm trying hard to reserve judgment on my NEW neighborhood until much more time has passed, because of course right now nothing will match up with what I've left.

There are many children on the street, and they've welcomed my kids with open arms. I had five neighborhood kids in the basement and backyard this afternoon. That's good. There will be more good, I'm sure. I'll wait to see what it is.

So anyway, I'm back-ish. And now, for more boxes. And laundry. And organizing.