It is HOT here in Florida! It was days like today that made such an impression on me when we arrived here to visit the family about 13 years ago. We were fresh from a wintry South Africa and the heat and humidity that assailed us when we disembarked at Orlando was like a slap in the face. The weather was actually one of the biggest objections I had about moving to Florida. Give me the temperate outdoorsy climate of (my part of) South Africa anytime. Pet peeve: why do the kids have their longest break from school when it is so insufferably hot to be outside? I wish school could be out over the spring months!
Some of our church friends are going camping at the end of the month, and we have decided to tag along. Instead of spending money to acquire camping equipment that we do not have, we have decided to try and rent a camper-trailer (with airconditioning, yeah!) so that we can ‘camp’ in comfort. Hubby doesn’t do heat. I can tolerate it if I must. Our pastor’s wife was really tempted to follow our example but her kids wanted to experience ‘the real thing.’ Heeheehee. We all think that her kids will end up with mine in the trailer after the first night! 🙂
I am out of the funk that I was in over the last few weeks. I have stopped moping around and wasting time and since the weekend I have cleaned out several closets, and decluttered quite a bit. I went through the pile of Jenna’s books that took up 3 shelves and whittled it down to one shelf, keeping only her most favorite books plus the ones that I would like to use if I should return to teaching again in the future.
Jenna was such a little book worm! The shelves were in her brothers’ room and sometimes if they went to bed before Jenna did (she was a night owl) we would sneak into the room with a flashlight to select books to read for bedtime. Jenna loved tip-toeing and whispering quietly so the ‘brudders’ wouldn’t wake up! She always wanted to take a huge bunch, but I would talk her down to two, or at most three. She knew many of those books by heart, and we had little rituals in reading them and certain comments that were not in the script but were essential to the stories as far as Jenna was concerned.
You know how it is…you read a favorite book and add a little comment about the picture. Next time you read it, your little one expects to hear the comment again, and each time you embelish on the story it becomes part of the book. Eventually a book that took perhaps took five minutes to read at first, takes 20 minutes! As I write this, I remember that way back then I was actually going to blog about Jenna and her love for books and how her books kept on getting longer and longer. I actually thought about complaining a bit about it then, since I was so tired at the end of the day and Jenna could have carried on reading forever, but now I would do anything to ‘have’ to read her a book again!
I have found many more Jenna items while cleaning the house. The walk-in closet downstairs contained many receipts from when Jenna was with us. They were little reminders of what we bought when, I could read them and take a little trip down memory lane. It was hard to toss them out. I didn’t kiss them though! 🙂 I have kept one – dated on my birthday in November last year. The receipt was from a jiffy store, and details 4 packs of chips. The Funyuns were Jenna’s. Nowadays my receipts at the jiffy stores only show 3 packs of chips, and often no Funyuns.
One of the greatest blessings this week was to find a painted hand print of Jenna’s on a plastic jar that I had used to keep math manipulatives in. She made some handprints on paper that day but quickly painted over them so I didn’t have a definitive hand print in the end. But one of them was preserved, praise Jesus! (He knows I wanted a hand print so badly!)
Jenna used to paint like this sometimes, by the way, and have a bath directly afterwards:
Since she used my unwashable craft paints often, it made sense to keep her clothes as far away from the paint as possible. 🙂
I wanted to thank all of you who responded to my last post and asked me for my address. I was sooooo blessed by you all! It amazes and humbles me that you would take the time to do this for me and my little girl. I am still up in the air about what I really want to do on the day, but I know this: I want it to be BIG. I want to have a real celebration, and I want as many people as possible to share it with us. My friend Sarah thinks we should actually ask my brother in law if we could use one of his water trucks, park it at the cemetery and have a slip-n-slide party! I just don’t know if I have the chutzpah. hehehe
Ok…this post is long enough. My oldest has been waiting to use the computer and came to check up on me. When he saw the length of this post he whistled in awe. “Wow, mom”, he said. “You really like writing, don’t you. You are really very strange. You can write my report for school. ”
( OK…someone mentioned the possibility of the picture being downloaded by strangers for dubious use. I decided to post the cropped version, though the original is sooooo much cuter! )