Tag Archives: motherhood

Poetics and Motherhood

For me, being a mother makes me a better poet – and being a poet makes me a better mother. I am fortunate to be writing with the support of my husband, but were I to be a single mother I think the effect would be the same. Motherhood greatly enriches my life and adds depth to it. Anytime you’re deep in your soul it will show up in your writing.

Writing fashions me into a better mother because I notice things. I stay in touch with the shifting loveliness of the world, and try to keep my daughter attuned to it also.

The creative outlet I get through writing poetry keeps me focused on Angelica when I am with her. I am refreshed from my time creating, and when Angelica and I play or do lessons I can really throw myself into it. I am not drawing from a dry well.

Life Giving Home

This inspiring book by Sally Clarkson renewed the vigor with which I manage my home. I will never be a fantastic housekeeper, but I will try.

Growing up I read that the mother is the thermostat of the home. Her mood and attitude sets the tone for the rest of the household. This book more or less drives that point home. The best thing I can do as a homemaker is be gentle with the people in my home, and try to be cheery. Good homemaking is not just about having floors that are clean enough to eat off (although that’s a good thing to have), but rather it is about creating an environment that people want to dwell in.

This book also gave me a few random ideas for creating a unique, memorable environment for my family. Play music throughout the day. I asked Craig to buy me a speaker for downstairs. He got me a cool little one that changes colors. He also got me an mp3 player and sd card to go with the speaker so I could connect music.

I tried to choose a soundtrack that I thought was interesting and set a tone. I have Gregorian chants, nun choirs, and other Christian music. I also have some favorite instrumental film scores, including some dark ones. I want a house of thinking. of memory, of the surreal. I have a little Evanescence and some Apocalyptica. They make orchestral versions of rock songs.  I have some of the Lord of the Rings soundtrack on there, some a capella, and Adrian von Ziegler.

Maybe that is a little odd, but I think it sets a memorable tone for the house. 

Hitting a Wall and Getting Help

We plugged away at BJU Press for as long as we could, but we just hit a wall. It’s actually a very good video curriculum taught by experienced teachers, and with accompanying review material. The problems we ran into were numerous. Angelica did not grasp phonics at all. They were teaching how to sound out basic words like sin and tin. Nothing worked. Phonics cards didn’t work. The teacher’s lessons didn’t work. Our explanations didn’t work. She wasn’t catching on and would cry with frustration.

Then there was the issue with math. She did finally count to ten by using this curriculum, which was great. But Angelica didn’t always connect numbers to actual objects, and getting higher than ten just wasn’t happening. Lesser and greater were difficult for her. And comparing ordinal and cardinal numbers, forget it. Tallying did not go well either.

We took her to a developmental pediatrician twice and what she determined is that Angelica probably has dyslexia and dyscalculia. She doesn’t handle those disorders though, so we have scheduled a full evaluation and diagnostic session at a literacy center in Denver. They were booked out until January. The Colorado Springs location, where we live, was booked out until April. The center will test for dyscalculia, dyslexia, and pretty much every other learning and developmental disorder. It’s expensive, but we need to do it. Something is clearly wrong, and we can’t seem to overcome it. We need to find out what Angelica has so we can learn how to teach her in a way she will understand. Hopefully we can also find a tutor with experience in whatever disorders she has who can come and do math and language arts lessons with her each week.

Tired, Productive

I barely got any sleep last night, so getting up this morning was a struggle. Luckily I did get up on time to get Angelica to Vacation Bible School. She enjoyed it and at the end of the day I picked her up and watch the little closing ceremony. She refused to take part though and decided to sit with me instead, so there wasn’t much for me to see. She did show up on the slideshow once, but it was a picture of her back.

While Angelica spent the morning at Vacation Bible School, I did actually get stuff done. I won’t say it was a hugely productive day but I did some cleaning and some laundry. And as tired as I felt I am pretty proud of that. I also did some reading. And when I picked Angelica up we did homeschooling together. Despite a low mood I managed to clean, do laundry, get Angelica to and from vacation bible school and sit through the closing ceremony, and homeschool. Then we took her to the speech therapist, but that is the subject of another post. So all in all I would say it was a successful day. I will be able to cross out most of the tasks in my productivity Journal. I was too tired to write and every time I attempted painting my mind would just blank out. So I wasn’t able to do very much of the creative stuff. But I covered the essential daily tasks.

Christian Bookstore, Diet, Domain Name

Angelica has been going to Vacation Bible School this week. She seems to be having fun and they do nice activities. Today she got a little picture frame to take home with Legos around the border. So far though when we talked to her it doesn’t seem like she’s actually learned anything. Maybe the messages will sink in later. But we ask her what she learned about God and she’ll say well we played. Then we’ll say, what did you learn about Jesus? And she’ll say we danced.

Craig has been home for the past few days because it is the time in his rotation where he gets a few days off. So we have been spending the mornings together running errands or just enjoying some quality time before we pick up Angelica. We love the Christian bookstore we went to. So many good books! And there are a lot of homeschool supplies too.

My diet is going well, knock on wood. I think I need to cut back a little more but I am still losing weight. I am so grateful for that.

I’m trying to pick a domain name for this site. I have done a little bit of remodeling on the page, and I would like to go ahead and buy a domain and make everything complete. Plus, if I buy hosting I get more memory. And I’m running low on memory. I’m considering several options for names, but I’m open to suggestions.

I am probably overthinking it, but this is my special little space on the web and I want it to have a good name. I’m torn between something functional, like the Veiled Housewife, and something creative/poetic like October Glow. More people will find the first one, and as I write about head covering and submission sometimes it might make sense. Plus, I like reading blogs by other stay at home women, so it might be nice to be listed as one. At the same time I really like the idea of something super creative and poetic, even if it will never show up in a search engine and some people might not understand why it has the name it has.

Some ideas:

Filigree Moon

November Snow

Sapphire Sea

Pelerine Journal

Red Telephone

Glitter Ghost

 

Baby Violet, Mountain, Family

A few days ago Angelica dressed her baby, Violet, up in one of the dresses she wore as a baby. She had a blast. She really loves that baby doll. I got Violet for Angelica on her third birthday. I also got her a bassinet, a bottle of juice and a bottle of milk, a baby bathtub, and some blankets and accessories to go with Violet. My hope is that she will pass Violet onto her children as I have passed my Holly and my Buffy to her. I hope to keep Violet in the family for years to come, as I do Holly and Buffy. I hope she doesn’t just have boys….

Right now Angelica is playing with Grace, our babysitter. I have been reading and writing, and I ran out for awhile. First I picked up a few new towels at Bed Bath and Beyond.  Then I drove up Cheyenne Mountain. The view from there is beautiful. You can see the entire town and across the prairie for miles.

My Uncle Jerry is coming Tuesday. I am looking forward to that. He has never met Angelica before. Uncle Jerry was a great uncle to me. I am looking forward to him meeting, and getting involved with, my daughter. I am excited to see him! I haven’t seen him in five years.

We got our plane tickets to fly out and see my parents at the end of June through early July. I have only been away from home for a few months, but it feels much longer than that. I am looking forward to going to the beach with my mom and to the movies with my dad. At some point while we are there I hope to see my sister. And I know Angelica would love to hang out with Aunt Bridget.

When She Becomes a Mother…

Someday, I hope my daughter will be a mother. This is a picture of her at church on Mother’s Day holding the carnation I was given. She really wanted to hold the flower!

Seeing my baby with babies of her own will undoubtedly be bittersweet, but I do want to see that. I hope Angelica loves being a mother. That is the important thing. Women that love being mothers do a better job with their children than women who don’t. The experience of motherhood is so wonderful and refreshing, and I hope that she can really embrace that joy.

I hope she doesn’t sweat the stupid stuff. There is so much conflicting parenting advice out there. Really though, you don’t need advice at all. Use common sense and figure out what works for you and your kid. I want her to know that she doesn’t answer to anyone but God for her parenting, not even me. There is no perfect guidebook. Parenting books are interesting to read, and if you find something in one that is of interest then by all means use it. But it is not necessary. She will know how to raise her child without being told.

I hope that she comes to me when she needs a break. She should have a babysitter too, especially if she doesn’t live near me. There is nothing wrong with having a babysitter and getting time to yourself. But Angelica should know that if she needs a break I’ll walk up the street (or fly across the country) to come and take care of my grandchildren while she and her husband get some much needed time of refreshment and relaxation. Having time to yourself makes you a happier person and a better parent, and I hope that comes across to her as she grows up and sees how I do things. Don’t be a martyr. If you truly don’t want the time off that is one thing, but if you do you should take it.

She should document as much as she can. I sometimes drive my daughter and my husband nuts with all the pictures I take. But at the end of the day I have all these memories and scrapbooks preserved. I do not have the best memory anymore. Photographs will help me relive the best years of my life when I am old, and will give me a legacy to pass down to Angelica so that she can view her own childhood and have that to keep. Sometimes it is good to stay in the moment and just enjoy it, but overall it is better to have a camera or phone. You’ll never get that moment back, so preserve it.

I hope that Angelica has the opportunity to be a mother, and I will help her in any way I can if she does. If she does become a mother, I just really pray that she loves it and that she makes the most of her memory making years, and that she is confident in her decisions and maintains her identity.

Housewife

Grateful skirts swirl in a breeze maybe meant for them.

Design is Holy,

is enamored of its Designer,

is a crossroads of means and ends.

A housewife manufactures sunshine in her laboratory,

the beakers from the store always having a sale,

her thesis supervised by green,

and critiqued by her children.

After 20 years who will know whether the

skirts were mended or replaced?

Just that they were infused with laughter

and smelled like mother in the living room

living with her eyes full.

 

Translated into Afrikaans and Xhosa, then back:

 

Skirts twirl in the grateful air
they were meant for.

Design and the Holy Spirit,

are enamored

of each other.

Is the intersection of the cross where it all begins?

The woman who produced the sun in her lab,

is studying all the ways you make happiness from the mundane.

Her thesis is green from watching her children.

After 20 years will you know that

the aprons can be repaired or replaced?

You will appreciate the humor.

She won’t.

 

 

skirts and gratitude for the atmosphere,

either of them.

Design and Holy Spirit,

make enamored designs,

are the ends on the cross.

The woman who makes the sun in her lab,

Her laboratory in Delaware furnished by a company

in Hong Kong.

Her thesis supervision is green.

So is the clock looking at her children’s energy,

their youth,

her youth.

After 20 years you will know that

the skirts can be repaired or replaced.

As you appreciate the humor in it,

and sort mothers by whether they baked cookies or used the microwave.

In her eyes you live fully,

live fully alone.