Monthly Archives: January 2013

When Mom Calls In Sick…


When I peeled myself out of bed yesterday morning, I discovered I had gained a headache, a sore throat, and an earache through the night. No matter. I had four kids waiting for me to be mom, so we moved on with the day.

I taught school lessons, made meals, cleaned messes, and started laundry. But it all took so long as I dragged slowly on through the pain. I have given birth four times, with almost no pain meds. I can handle anything, right?

Or so I thought. As the day went on, and aches and chills crept through my body, I realized I was going to need more than willpower to survive. I was going to need prayer and some ibuprofen.

I thought I might be better after a good night’s rest. But alas, today I woke up to an exaggerated version of my previous day’s “gifts,” and I realized I was going to need to get to the doctor. This is one of the rare moments I deem absolutely necessary to call in for back-up.

But “Back-Up” had jury duty.

And not only did my dear hubby have jury duty, he was hand-selected to be a juror. I had advised him to wear a shirt with a don’t-pick-me-slogan, like “Guilty Until Proven Innocent.” I would have gladly stitched up such a shirt for him last night. Hindsight is 20-20.

And so, as my dear husband is text-checking on us, I am sitting in an urgent care facility waiting with my 20 kids. (Okay, I only have four kids, but a two-hour wait with four kids and crawling germs everywhere feels like 20 kids!) Actually, they were well-behaved. (Lots of prayer went into that!)

When we were finally admitted to the exam room, and they had asked the typical hundred questions, we waited yet again. As my toddler walked about the room investigating which buttons she would push to entertain herself, I did the unthinkable. That thing you always wanted to do but never had the guts. Yes, I inflated an exam glove, much to the delight of my toddler.

When we had exhausted the fun of the “balloon,” the doctor was finally in. I didn’t have strep, and I didn’t have the flu. She took one look at my throat and my ears and said I had a severe sinus infection with “bulging ear drums” in both ears. And then she said the word I had waited all morning to hear…


Please, get them in me, make them work fast, and restore me to full-on mommyhood.

Well, as it turned out, it took a little while for the meds to make a difference. But tonight, as I started to feel better, it was as if a veil was removed from my eyes.

I surveyed the damage. It was something akin to a tornado that swept through the house. Grocery ads torn and scattered, matchbox cars littered the floor. Socks were strewn about, blankets thrown to and fro, shoes separated from their matches, books piled high, crumbs dotting the counters. I couldn’t believe it.

It’s funny. Sometimes I wonder what I do all day that keeps me running through this house like a “chicken with my head cut off.” Now I know — I’m a grocery-ad-protector matchbox-car-picker-upper sock-hamper-putter-inner blanket-folder shoe-matcher book-shevler crumb-sweeper. That is what I do.

And now I have sufficient drugs with which to do it.


13 in 2013: A Book Challenge


I am not a big fan of New Year’s resolutions. I don’t think I have ever even made one. But January is a fresh time for new resolves and goals. Something about it lends to renewed starts and refocus.

So this year I have made a non-resolution to attempt to completely (key word here) read 13 books this year. I love to read but, since having kids, have failed to make completing books a priority. I don’t know if I have undiagnosed ADD or what, but I read a book until it bores me (or another book promises to be more exciting) and then add it to my large pile of books in process. I have a baby or two and then realize I have “been reading” some of the books for years!

And so I give you the books I want to read each month for 2013. I hope this can be an encouragement for some of you to make lists of your own. After all, in the words of Douglas Wilson in his book I partially read, Wordsmithy, you should “read until your brain creaks.” I love that thought.

Educating the Wholehearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson

Good and Angry: Exchanging Frustration for Character in You and Your Kids by Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller

Wordsmithy: Hot Tips for the Writing Life by Douglas Wilson

For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School by Susan S. MacAulay

The Four Loves by C. S. Lewis

Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard

What Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings — and Life (ebook) by Laura Vandekam

The Discipline Book: How to Have a Better-Behaved Child from Birth to Age Ten by Martha and William Sears

Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

When the Game Is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box by John Ortberg

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin

Charlotte Mason’s Original Homeschooling Series: Volume 1 by Charlotte Mason

Bonus Book (I downloaded this on Kindle to read when I steal a quick minute or two!)
Hints on Child-Training by H Clay Trumbull

If you take up this challenge, I would love to know what books you’re reading!
Happy Reading!