This weekend was: upsetting, exciting, disappointing, productive, and unifying. Could it have been better? For sure - but, actually in regards to anything we had control over, it was wonderful.
I'm going to just put this out there and try to stick to facts as much as possible. There's always that fear that anytime you speak of something on a blog, someone is going to find out, and you will get "caught". My rule (after often writing and then deleting), is "when in doubt, leave it out", but I wouldn't mind a little advice on this issue and by sticking to facts and my feelings, if it does ever get read, I think I could have peace about it.
We have brand new neighbors next door. They are WONDERFUL. The husband wants to update the house and send all of our home values up as a result (that house screams a need for curb appeal). They are kind and respectful and have, what appears to be, strong family values. They have two daughters, one that is Mikayla's age, and one who is a 6th grader - both very sweet. The younger daughter was attending the other big school that would eventually feed into our joint high school, but because of meeting Mikayla and desiring a "neighborhood feel", the mom transferred her daughter over to Gilham last week. What ended up was that the daughter felt very out of place, "the new girl", and they ended up at our doorstep after school with what appeared to be tears in both of their eyes (mom and daughter). Oh boy, can I relate to the pain a mom feels when her daughter is unhappy. We hung out for over an hour after that and what came out of it was a definite "statement" that it was my daughter's responsibility to achieve happiness on behalf of her daughter at Gilham.
As you might imagine, this did not sit well for me or Mikayla. When we parted ways, I was very upset and felt like my daughter was being manipulated. The girls are in different classes so Mikayla includes her at recess and lunch, but ultimately, what the mom is doing is forcing my daughter's hand - and creating a lot of resentment in the process. Mikayla and I are VERY similar in how we crave our "private time" at home to re-group and restore our energy/semi-tendency-towards-being-introverted. So, when someone is at the door wanting our attention at any hour of the afternoon/evening - it scares us both. We also both crumble in a relationship when expectations are set higher than we are comfortable fulfilling.
So, we'll see. I find myself wondering what motivated the mom to pull her daughter from a school environment she thrived in and had plenty of friends to this school. Since I believe my daughter is that reason (what a lot of pressure - and no, we didn't necessarily recommend it as 4th grade at Gilham is a MESS right now) - I believe the mom is displacing her guilt/second-guessing to Mikayla - and hoping she can be the one to make everything right. I get that. But, that doesn't mean it's okay. I'm hoping for some space this week to see how everything pans out, but if we do cross paths again, I will stand my ground. I recognize she was in "Mama Bear" mode Friday afternoon, but I've turned into "Mama Bear" all weekend processing all of this. If necessary, I'll make our feelings clear in the best "this is how we 'feel"" way I know how.
Through some much-needed prayer, I was able to let Friday afternoon's issue settle. (Not easy...it really bothered me). Mikayla's volleyball team played in the early afternoon and wow...did they deliver. We are setting up incentives for them to make "3 contacts" before sending it over the net. The goal was to get to "10" after the second game of the day. By the end of the first game, they were already at "21"! Woo hoo! To see their pride and improvement, and team play - was so gratifying.
The Duck game......Oh, HEARTBREAKING!!!!! "Our Kenjon" had an exceptional game and we were so proud of him for being an integral part of the 4th quarter comeback. But, we fell just short of the win. It was hard for all of the fans, but for John and I, watching someone we've grown to care about so much walking around the field, physically demonstrating his anguish after losing, was crushing. =( However, if we can take care of business against Oregon State next weekend, we have a good chance for the Rose Bowl. How crazy is it that we've gotten to the point where "The Rose Bowl" is the "disappointing" bowl opportunity!
Family mission: productivity! John and Brayden took care of the outdoor lights in record time. Mikayla cleaned inside and organized some much-needed areas. I tackled some pre-Thanksgiving projects and the garage.
Kaela also dropped by, and (I'm not sure what she was thinking) stepped in to volunteer to clean the garage with me. Maybe she felt guilty because I gave her some supplies to duplicate the place card project (Pinterest inspired) I put together while she was here:
But, God bless her for being here to hang out with and help in the garage. We'd let loads of stuff pile up and had to toss, organize, and clean to prepare for Christmas. Because she was around, it turned a nasty chore into a good time - Thanks Kaela!
From there, we went to Brayden's "End-of-Season-Pop-Warner-Football-Party" at Papa's. It was such an outstanding season that I found myself looking forward to hearing all of the "props and atta-boys" from the coaches to each other, all of the volunteers, and of course, the kids. Brayden was described as "having a heart bigger than this whole place" - which means the world to us as parents. What a team, what a season (10-0!)....so glad we have one more 8th grade year with this same coach and team. =)
Finally, CCF. We didn't stay long, but the kids were in great moods during worship, hanging on both of us and giving John and I this joy of being a close family unit. Through all of the ups and downs and "attacks on the homefront", it always comes back to that - and for that, I'm incredibly thankful!