Friday, August 15, 2014

kindergarten.


we've just finished our first week of kindergarten! i say we, because it's clearer than ever, this is a team event. we're all in, and we're in it to win it.
a few thoughts from week one:
elijah did wonderfully his first day, considering all the overwhelming changes he faced. the rest of this week has been ok. the thing is. kindergarten is hard. being away from home all day, unfamiliar routines, new faces, smells and sights. i wish i knew how to fully meet every single one of elijah's needs. how to perfectly inspire, calm and comfort him as he tackles this new season of life. i just don't have all the answers for him, or myself. 
i wish elijah could answer the questions i ask when i pick him up from school. i battle anger and fear, at my not being in control and not really knowing all the details of his day away from home. are people patient with him? kind to him? is he happy, fearful, tired? this week i've struggled with anxiety and felt a bit alone. processing all this new. and really feeling overwhelmed along with elijah.
but the lord is with us! he's hemmed us in and covered us with his peace. we'll keep praying when we're tempted to worry. keep encouraging and celebrating elijah and praying for his teachers. we'll keep thanking jesus for each day, and trusting him to make them good. 
i'm excited to see elijah grow with each new week at his awesome new school. hopeful for little friendships to form and skills to be discovered and sharpened! i'm so proud of our brave boy. he continues to teach me so much.

Friday, August 08, 2014

back to school SALE at wifeysinger.etsy.com!



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we're a few short days away from kindergarten here, and so excited about this new adventure! we're celebrating the beginning of school instead of weeping too much over the end of summer. you can celebrate, too! for you:

25% OFF everything in the shop including sale items!
plus ONE DOLLAR domestic shipping
enjoy this crazy deal with promo code SCHOOL 
now through august 10

many items are few of a kind, so be sure to pick up your favorites now!
happy weekend!

Monday, August 04, 2014

new week news


monday.
the day after the day of rest. why am i always so exhausted on mondays? elijah's been shouting for food since he hopped out of bed this morning, and complaining about anything i offer him. clearly not as hungry as he's claiming. bless him. we're sleepy, a little lazy and a lot happy. it's a great day!
today:
we painted a little, elijah loves painting. mostly he loves swirling his brushes in the water cup. i love watching him choose colors. "now how about this one!" "ok, now this one!" "hmmm what's next? I KNOW! blue!"
we exercised a little, which is as chaotic and dizzy-ing as you may imagine. elijah does everything with extreme fervor and it's a bit contagious. i mean, you better keep up or you're getting hurt. he's very enthusiastic and cheers us on, i love it.
i worked a little in my shop. which means our dining table is covered in beads and brass.
i listened to this sermon.
kept my glass full. i'm addicted, don't try to help me.
browsed this pinterest board for something new.

tonight, i'm going to a prayer time with ladies from my new sunday school class. i wish i could explain how happy this makes me, and how good god is.
tomorrow patrick is off from work. we have an appointment to take elijah to his new school to take a little private tour. next we'll swim and maybe visit the zoo.
tomorrow night, i have another prayer time/dinner. i'm bringing a salad, i think, hence the pinterest search today. this get together is for the moms of special needs kids at church. to pray together for our kiddos as they get ready for school. again, i can't grasp the goodness of god in this flood of encouragement through our new church family. hallelujah!

how was your monday?
i hope your week started well, if it feels like it didn't, that's ok. tomorrow is a brand new day and the lord is there ahead of us, with a mercy well that never runs dry.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

some heart behind our cookies


we baked yesterday. elijah asked to make cookies and i said yes, even though it was 94 degrees outside. we turned our oven to 350 and whipped up a quick batch of sweets. 1 cup peanut butter, 1 cup sugar, 1 egg. roll in cinnamon sugar, criss-cross, bake 10 minutes and enjoy. i shared this photo on instagram yesterday and i wanted to say more about my saying yes.

i've read many inspiring articles and blog posts about motherhood, and written a few thoughts myself. about the importance of being present, listening intently, focusing on our families, taking care of ourselves so we can be our best for our kids, embracing the chaos and choosing to say yes, especially when it's inconvenient...i love all that. i agree with all that.

it's been a little different for me. my original idea of motherhood is a faded memory now. i was prepared to be that focused, listening, fun mom. i wasn't prepared for my son being non-verbal, offering nothing much for me to listen to.  i wasn't prepared for working so hard to have my son be interested in me. at first, i was frustrated and discouraged. it felt like, "hey! i was ready to be an awesome mom, and you don't even care!" i felt helpless, because it turned out, i didn't really know that much. and i wasn't awesome.

god reminded me that he himself is the awesome one. the best listener. the best source of wisdom and love. i asked him to help me. to show me how to be the best mom for elijah. and i'm still asking him.
i'm learning to listen to my son, whether he's speaking or not. because communication isn't limited to speech. learning that he does care, about everything, even when i can't understand his way yet. i'm learning what makes my son tick, what excites him, and no matter how quirky, i enjoy encouraging his interests.
elijah is now becoming more verbal, blasting us with new sentences every week! it's been a joy to see him express himself with words. i'm still not accustomed to him asking for things, it's like a surprise every time. when he speaks, i want him to have my attention. he's desiring to communicate with language and i want to encourage him. by responding well. so if he asks me to play/make/do something, and it's safe and available, i try to agree. 

"make cookies, mama?"
"cracka egg, elijah do it?"
"good job, mama!"

i say yes because i want him to keep asking me. i want to delight in him, and i want him to see my joy. to connect with him. i want him to know that he's important exactly as he is. language or not, eye contact or not, i want to be with him. i want to know him. i want to learn his language.
my expectations have changed, my view of myself and my son has changed. i have different plans and new hope. i still get frustrated and we've a long way to go. but we're together on the same path now, and i'm loving learning with elijah. i mean, who doesn't love a way paved with cookies?

Monday, July 28, 2014

two weeks until kindergarten



i've lost count of the days, but this boy has been sweet company every bit of summer so far. i don't want these days together to end! he starts school very soon, which is awesome. i'm trying to view it as more time to rest and get things done, instead of time apart from elijah. because truly, nothing is getting done and i get no rest right now :) but i do love it.

i'm going school supply shopping tonight, that really makes things feel real. and expensive. ha!
the kindergarten transition is difficult for every family, add autism into that sea of emotion and it feels like i'm drowning. plus we're in a totally new school system! we did a lot of research before we moved. we chose an apartment just a short drive from the school we wanted for elijah. it seemed like everyone was directing us to this school, assuring us it would be a wonderful fit for elijah. we prayed and prayed, and the lord gave peace. days after arriving in our new city, we registered elijah for kindergarten! it was great to see the school and meet a few faces, and it felt really right there. but. i've been struggling with anxiety over this whole thing.

nobody knows elijah here. will staff really be able to give him what he needs? will he be encouraged in his abilities? will he be overlooked? will he have friends? unending questions really. and sadly i don't always pray about them first, i just fuss and fuss over them and get myself all worked up. ridiculous! you know what? god is so kind. in my weakness, he showed up with more peace and encouragement. 
we attended a dinner at the pastor's home of the church we've been visiting. it was such a good time, meeting people and getting to know the pastor and his wife. i was chatting with the pastor, he asked about elijah and we started talking a bit about autism. a lady nearby overheard us, and when i turned around to refill my coffee cup, she introduced herself. she said something like, "you were talking about your son? about autism? how old is he?" i shared that he was entering kindergarten and told her which school. then she told me she works at his school. she's a speech teacher for the preschool. she then told me about the teachers there, about how many are believers and do bible study together. praying for the school. she told me how they really love the students are are super good about assessing needs and meeting them. it was so good to hear this from someone who works for the school. my eyes were welling with tears, and i worked hard not to start a messy weep fest of relief. i tried to keep cool and just tell her how awesome it was to hear this about elijah's new school! i told her how anxious i was and she kept encouraging me about everything.
these small little bits of conversation were a giant wave of comfort to me. it was like god telling me to just. chill. out. he's in control. he knows more about what elijah needs than anyone else, including me, and he'll see to it that those needs are met. always.

first thing tomorrow morning i have a meeting with the special education director and other staff. i'm excited to connect and discuss this new adventure elijah will begin soon! if you think of us, please pray for wisdom and clear understanding as we make plans for elijah. 

two weeks until kindergarten!