This is the first week I have had an empty nest…..all four children spread to the four corners of the world. It is the strangest feeling to have your little birds all grown up and flying with their wings strong and confident. For this mother, it is a time of trying to find a new normal. It is a bit like trying to live with your right arm cut off….I am managing but it is strange and difficult.
Where are the kids? Amanda is in Southern California volunteering on a building project. This is Mr. D’s last week at his current job and he starts his new challenge at Blast in a week or so…he lives on his own about an hour from here. Mr. A is living in New York and having a great experience. Mr. B is traveling in Nicaragua…more on that next week.
Oh, I have plenty to do and I have kept very busy. I realize now how many chores my children help with when they are home like washing the car and helping with the day to day cleaning of the kitchen and bathrooms. I am finding that I spend more time in the mundane tasks but still trying to find joy in the doing of them. Bonus? The house stays cleaner longer with no one to leave little messes. The food is lasing longer in the refrigerator too. That reminds me of another change…cooking for two is just plain weird. It is hard to break my old habits and sometimes we end up with lots of leftovers.
So what am I doing?
I am still working on clearing out clutter and giving lots of things away to other families. I had a homeschooling friend come over and she loaded up many of my science resources and books for her son. There is joy in passing things along and sharing homeschooling knowledge with newbies.
I am using my new sewing machine to create a few little projects. This week I am sewing a few things as a house-warming gift for my niece who just bought her first home. It was fun to pick out the fabric and then spend some time quietly sewing.
Writing every day in some fashion-started regularly keeping a journal that has become an all-in-one sort of journal. A daily reflection, a gratitude journal, a scripture reflection, and catch-all for all my thoughts. It helps.
I have been spending time hiking and gardening in the perfect fall weather. The Kona dog has been to the river more lately and she loves it! We are fixing up a few spaces in the house including my laundry area and plans for the bathroom remodel.
My days are different and quiet but there is still much to be thankful for. My children are all living their lives to the full and helping others find peace in the Good News, each in their own way.
So, if you are in the middle of the crazy homeschool life that never seems to stop, think of me and my empty nest. Your nest will be quiet some day too. Be present for the memories and capture some for your future. Keep a journal, make a scrapbook, frame some images. They are treasures for another time when you will be wanting to remember all the little things that have made your life so sweet.