Life has been a little C-R-A-Z-Y for me lately. I’m slowly trying to get my feet back underneath me after being a little here, there, and everywhere. Let me tell you; I am struggling just a bit in that arena. And when I say, “I am struggling just a bit,” what I really mean is that I am a hot mess.
My house is a disaster, with unfinished projects and chores everywhere I look. My focus is muddled, causing me to question whether or not I am making any progress on my yearly goal. Uncertainty about the future and the new chapter of life that looms overhead as we approach high school graduation constantly weighs on my mind. I am neglecting important things because I get distracted by every wind that blows my way (Squirrel!), not to mention my overflowing schedule in this exceptionally busy season of the year (and life).
Three teenagers, one soon-to-be 12-year-old, and one eight-year-old have a way of making life feel more hectic than it has been in years past, and I have less and less control over our collective busyness. In looking at the calendar last night, we determined that June 23rd is our next free weekend, which is also my 40th birthday. That thought makes my head spin just a little.
All of these things have compounded in my mind, causing my stress level to be higher than normal, and it shows in my behavior. Trust me; that is not a pretty thing.
Can you relate?
I don’t know that I have any profound insight to share with you today because I’m feeling a little scatterbrained and overwhelmed. So I thought I would take a minute to share some pictures from my iPhone to let you know what I have been up to in the past month, aside from being a hot mess, that is. I hope you enjoy them.
At the end of February, Greg and I took Andrew to New York City in celebration of his 16th birthday, which was last June. We are a little behind schedule, but our kids get a trip when they turn 16 to anywhere in the continental US. Andrew wanted to see a show on Broadway and explore the Big Apple, so we packed up and headed to Manhattan. Here is our trip in a nutshell:
The New York Philharmonic was incredible, especially for our violin and french horn playing son.
The World Trade Center Memorial, Museum, and Freedom Tower stirred my memory and my patriotic spirit.
Liberty Island could never disappoint.
Love this energetic and silly boy of mine!
Watching the sunset from atop The Empire State Building was beautiful (and cold).
I have seen Phantom of the Opera several times, but watching it on Broadway was like nothing I had ever experienced. We LOVE theater, musicals, and all things that rely on a stage.
Andrew fell in love with Times Square, with all of its sights and sounds.
I hyperventilated a little when they spent over $40 on two and a half pounds of M&M’s from the M&M’s store.
The Brooklyn Bridge made me think of Newsies. (My favorite show of all times.)
I think I would have to live in Central Park if I lived in New York! It is the only place that I felt like I could breathe.
And the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine was breathtaking.
After spending a few days there, Andrew was convinced that living in New York would be a good idea. I think I will stick to the suburbs where I can see the unobstructed sky.
When we came back from NYC, Kate competed in the Regional Odyssey of the Mind competition, which is all about creative thinking and problem-solving. Her team won first place and will be competing at State soon. She makes a pretty cute Dr. Watson, doesn’t she?
We finally finished our backyard remodel with the crowning touch, a wood-fired pizza oven. It is a fun new toy that makes the most delicious pizza ever. We are already enjoying pizza parties on a regular basis and look forward to many more.
I hiked the iconic Camelback Mountain that I had never before hiked, even though I have lived in the Phoenix area for most of my life. It was steep and rugged and more than a little scary in parts, but I made it, thanks to my trusty hiking buddy. I’m glad that he likes hiking even more than I do (which is a lot). Plus, I may never get rid of the sweet farmer’s tan from that day. Try not to be jealous.
And, finally, we just returned from a Spring Break trip to California. My kids go to three different schools in two school districts, and this was the first time in the past several years that they have all had the same Spring Break. We had to do something, and roller-coasters were calling us. Well, they were not calling me because I could live without them, but I have an entire family full of thrill seekers, so I go in the name of family fun, and cheer from the sidelines on any ride that has huge drops. I do not like that stomach in your throat feeling, but put me on loops, twists, and corkscrews, and I will love it.
I especially enjoyed riding the carousel with Kate at the end of our day at Magic Mountain. While she is on the cusp of teenagerhood, I will savor these days of carousels and stuffed animals.
My favorite activity of the week was hanging out at the beach. I could lie with my toes in the sand for a lifetime and never get tired of it.
I saw this sign at the restaurant we ate at while in our sandy beach clothes, and I want one for my house. Do you think I could reasonably get rid of Wi-Fi?
That, my friends, is my month in a nutshell. It has been a whirlwind, and we are just getting started. I have a feeling the next three months will be equally crazy, but I am going to try to take in as much as I can. Because life, with all of its craziness, has a way of slipping through my fingers.
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