"The thistle is a prickly flower, aye, but how it is sweetly worn."

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Back Porch Weekend

I sort of started this weekend early on Thursday afternoon.  I used my 1:00 release pass to come hang out with Jude, and while I did work on Friday, it felt like it started Thursday.  I picked Jude up from school, which was a first for me.  We randomly decided to go to the library.  He picked out a pirate book and 2 Christmas books, which was fitting since our HIGH was 45* that day.  In May.  In Texas.  Needless to say, we came home and snuggled the rest of the afternoon.  Jude even fell asleep on me as pictures above.  Such a precious, precious moment.  I always worry about the day where Jude no longer feels like a baby to me.  Very thankful that day hasn't come just yet.


 This weekend Jimmy's parents and nephew were in town while his father spoke at a couple churches around here.  To say that Jude loved Elijah would be a gross understatement.  He thinks Elijah hung the moon and is possibly the coolest person alive.  Elijah is one of the most tender, patient 9 year olds I've met.  It was the sweetest thing to see them together.  Jude kept asking Elijah to hold his hand :)  We spent Saturday afternoon exploring 'Mars rocks' and the lake near my house.  It was still kind of cold, but super sunny and gorgeous.  The perfect day to just sit outside.  Plus, there is something about walks along the prairie grasses as they rustle in the wind that soothes my soul  in such a deep way.

We also took the boys down to the playground where they enjoyed swinging.  Jimmy ever the amazingly tender and patient man that he is pushed Jude most of the time and took his picture for me.  I wish there were words to describe the ways I love his heart, but there just aren't.  All I know is I wish I could be half the person he is.  

And this shot- oh my.  The sunlight on those golden locks.  I don't know how he is mine sometimes.


I got in a bit of reading this weekend.  While at the library, I checked out a collection of Robert Frost poems.  Don't you just love that book?  I am seriously considering not turning it in so I can keep it.  Half my house has teal.  And I love vintage books more than almost anything decor wise.  And Robert Frost makes my heart swoon.  

**Side comment- I have been reading my kids a poem a day from a 'poet of the week'.  We started with Robert Frost and have since also read WB Yeats, Emily Dickinson, Robert Browning, and Rudyard Kipling.  However, it's been amazing.  Remember I teach 2nd grade and 'low income'.  My kids have made amazing poem to poem connections and poem to life connections.  And we are reading Classics! I mean I never would have given kids so young the credit to be able to do this, but they are doing it amazingly.  When my kids and I were on a field trip a couple weeks ago, we went on a path in the woods which divided 2 ways.  My kids were soooo excited because it was like the road not taken.  It's been a huge lesson for me.  Never underestimate what kids can do if you expose them and believe they can understand.  Beautiful!**

I also finished the top book Friday night.  It's written by a lady who struggled with depression.  I struggle more with the anxiety piece, but they somewhat go together.  It's pretty good if you struggle with those things.  The thing I think that helped me the most was remembering to think on what is true and real.  I am so guilty of overanalyzing things until they are completely contorted from reality.  This is a good challenge for me.  Especially, as the book points out, when it comes to people's actions.  It encourages you to take people at more of a face value instead of trying to figure out what they really mean.  This will be a big lesson for me, but the way the book explained it was powerful for me.  It's not an amazing read, but if you struggle with those issues, it has some good pointers.  

I started Jane Eyre tonight (Sunday).  I am 3 chapters in and hooked.  I never was required to read that one in any of my classes.  I can already tell you I missed out!

I have been working on sprucing up my back porch as you can see below.  Today was sunny and in the 60s and you better believe I spent 75% of my day out there.  Just sitting mainly.  Hanging with Wild Jude Pie.  He actually has been super energetic this weekend.  It's one of the more stressed parts of our relationship.  I am a true introvert.  I love quiet and alone time.  Jude is a true extrovert.  He loves people and talking and loud.  I sometimes feel like I'm going to go insane if I don't have a moment's peace.  He probably gets his feelings hurt because I am not as excited about talking as he is.  God always seems to put the people in your life who will cause you to grow the most.  As much as I adore my child, it's a stretch for me to serve him sometimes.  But if he were like me, it wouldn't be much of a selfless act.  Him being so different really causes me to lean on God's strength to parent.  I have no doubt of my being ill equipped to parent him.  Today I started struggling with the constant activity.  But keep reading, because God was faithful to redeem!

Due to my need for quiet, I put Jude to bed about 30 minutes earlier.  It was just getting too hard for me to be patient, so I avoided a problem by creating some space.  I got him in bed and I took myself to the quietest, most peaceful place I have right now- my porch.  I had been on the porch all afternoon, but with Jude, it was constant car ramming, dumpster trucks slamming down the slide, don't climb that, don't scream at the top of your lungs kind of afternoon.  But this time, I had an introvert's dream.  I laid down upon my loveseat, wrapped a blanket around me, faced the rose bushes which are about to bloom like crazy, and read Jane Eyre.  The air was cool and breezy.  The sun was setting to my right.  The only sounds were cars going down the Farm Road near my house and birds chirping their evening songs.  These are the moments that feed me.  I need these times of quiet to rejuvenate.  I can't give to Jude and all my little kiddos without these moments of serenity.  And oh how perfect this moment was. Complete 1000 gifts....

After 3 glorious chapters, I heard Jude crying inside.  Probably because he got up and realized I wasn't inside.  But after that peaceful time, I had the ability to love and serve him with every ounce of me.  I was able to fully hug him and be present for him.  He came outside with me and we laid under the blanket together for the last remaining 45 minutes of twilight.  We saw the first stars rising, airplanes flying.  He told me all about the bible story he learned at church today.  I was able to give him the extroverted people and conversation he needed to be filled because I had had my time alone.  It was a beautiful thing.  And I love how instead of ending the night feeling frustrated at myself because I couldn't give him what he needed, God redeemed the time so that it came full circle, and I was filled just enough to serve so completely.  This weekend was one of the most simple I've had in a long time, but also one of the most fulfilling.  And what a great reminder that God is with us teaching and guiding in the most simple.


katebradley said...

Yay! What a sweet post. I love that Jude still feels even a little bit like a baby to you. I need to pick up some good grown up reading at the library (something that doesn't involve shapes, colors, animals, or learning about the potty) so that I can spend some time reading and relaxing!

ThistleAshD said...

It is encouraging to know they feel like babies for long time :) And definitely pick up grown up reading! If I can find time for it, you can. It's good for the soul!

westbrooks said...

I love the way you put that about serving him and fulfilling his needs...it reminded me of the 5 love languages I haven't read the kid version yet but I know Colby's is time spent playing with him/one on one time. When he starts acting out like crazy I often sit down and think ok when was the last time I really played with him or took time out for just him with no distractions! I just love the way you put that into words it captured what I think all mom's go through!

Lauren said...

That sunglasses pic....so cute!! ;) Looks like a great weekend!


Shannon @Imperfectly Perfect Grace said...

Ohh that Jude, you can tell he's got so much inside of him..like wise beyond his years :) You and I sound very much alike as do Jude and my son Jay.

Jen B said...

Your evening on your porch sounds amazing!! Love those pillows too! God is trying to teach me patience right now as we deal with major melt downs and temper tantrums. Ugh, why is being a parent so hard sometimes?!

ThistleAshD said...

It was definitely amazing. I keep thinking back on that evening the past few days. I think it will be one of those simple memories that sticks with me. And I have no idea why being a parent is so hard, but trust me you aren't alone with being tested! Parenting is definitely hard!

Elizabeth Mayberry said...

love the sunglasses!