quick 5

Happy Friday, everyone.

1. I been meaning to tell you about an awesome organization called Kiva. Kiva is a microlending organization that allows you to give a loan to a small business owner anywhere in the world. For Drew's birthday, he got a Kiva gift card which enabled him to go online and pick someone to loan the money to. You can search by region of the world (continents or specific countries), types of loans (housing, medical, etc.) or by the ones that are almost totally funded. Once the loan is repaid (and the repayment rate is OVER 98%!!!!) the money is returned to your account and you get to loan it to someone else. What a great way to teach money principles, show compassion, talk about the needs of other people, and do something about the economic state of other countries. So for birthdays, Mother's Day, Christmas- what do you give the person who has everything? Give them a chance to give to someone who is truly in need! I highly recommend it.

2. I stumbled on a new blog (because I am low on things to read online and definitely need more ways to waste time) that I really enjoy. In particular, I really liked the post, It's All McDonald's. Amen.

3. This week Garrett was out-of-town-but-in-town for three days as he filled in at one of the residential homes he oversees. He decided to take each of the older kids with him for one day. The day without Ella was a wash because I had some crazy sinus/allergy headache that made me a little crazy. The day without Isaac was just a little flat, like the spark around here was missing. Isaac sings at meals and does impressions and throws fiery temper tantrums about napping- just kind of keeps things light. And Drew was left to play with Ella. Alone. This doesn't really work out so well because Ella can really push his buttons, and she does. So it's a lot of mediating when they are forced to play together. Not bad for them, just a lot of work for all of us. When Drew was gone, Isaac was resigned to his fate of playing with Ella and fussed a lot less. He also doesn't take her bossiness so personally (he kind of just kicks her when she oversteps her place- different issues than his older brother who gets extremely offended) I'll be glad to have balance restored tomorrow when we are all home.

It was interesting how being one kid down felt so different. Like I was always looking at an empty car seat or doing a head count in the store and coming up short. It made me think about how hard it would be to lose a child  (not lose one as in they wander off- that isn't hard at all. Lose as in if one of them died). Every time you look in your rear view mirror, every night at breakfast, morning when brushing teeth, putting on shoes to leave- you would notice that loss every single time. I just can't imagine....it was a really sobering thought.

On a more positive note, it was sweet that when Isaac and Drew were reunited after almost two days apart, they called each other's names and ran to hug. So sweet. 

4. I've never really believed in love at first sight.That is, until Tuesday night. I was watching TV and saw a commercial for the Dyson Digital Slim

It's a cordless vacuum. It does all the crazy things that Dysons do. But it has no cord. Are you getting this? It's so magical, I'm pretty sure it will make whatever room you hang it in look this clean. I was so affected by the beauty of this product, I wasn't sure whether to say "You complete me" or "You had me at hello."   Or maybe, "Life with you would really suck...in a good way." Yeah- that's a keeper.

5. Our boys started  tae kwon do a few weeks back. The teacher does a great job teaching them to listen to instructions, not interrupt, and to all around self control. My favorite part (besides the self-control) is that Isaac refers to the instructor as Monster Hall instead of Master Hall. 

The boys- and our cute neighbor who came along one week. 

On the way home from class last week, Isaac asked, "If he's teaching us to punch,
 why won't he let us punch anybody?"

6. A bonus one- just cause! Last weekend with the storm we spent the afternoon over at the neighbor's house due to expected tornado warning (their basement wins over ours. And who doesn't want to spend the afternoon with your awesome neighbors, especially when the calendar originally said "CLEAN OUT GARAGE" on that day?) 

As we were rushing to get over there after lunch, I packed Tessa's stuff up so she could nap and got things together. Suddenly I felt the need to bring something. I mean, we could be there all day and we aren't going to contribute anything? Three minutes later, there was a pan of Honey-Bunches-of-Oats bars (substitute H-B-O for rice crispies- so much better, and besides- I prefer my servings of whole grain covered in marshmallow, thank you very much.)

At some point in the process, I'm like, "Becky- what is wrong with you? This is a storm warning not a dinner party!"  Then I recalled that my Enneagram type is called The Hostess. So it's all legit, folks. I'm just wired that way. 

Ella enjoyed an afternoon of girl toys and little ladies to play with. Do you see Fia in the background? That's the neighbors newest addition. We have officially forgiven them for violating the "NO DOG" pact.

Tessa gave a concert at some point. That's me in the background in my Mr. Rogers sweater. Remind me to tell you about that some time. 
OK- that's all for now. Have a great weekend. As my high school drama teacher used to stay, "Stay safe. Make wise choices. I want to see you all back here on Monday."

Not bad advice. 


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