Enough Already!

I’m done. Had it. Over it. Want off the ride. You name it, I’m there. Let me catch you up…

Some of you may remember, last August, when we moved into our lovely home, we found a few brown recluses. I say a few, because I think we had 4 or 5 in that first week… I was NOT happy about it… I’ve lived in the Nashville area 17 years, and never actually seen any outside of the zoo. I called the people who are supposed to be good at killing things like that and was told we didn’t have a problem… ummm really? There are bugs in my house who can do DAMAGE to my kids and I don’t have a problem???

I was told that with 5 kids said bugs would not want to be around, and within six months they would move out because there’s too much noise… there’s a reason they are called RECLUSE…

Well, after that first week, we didn’t see any for a while… then my boys would find one or two in their room, or we found on in the baby’s room… I honestly don’t remember them all…

Then there was a weekend I don’t think I’ll ever forget… about two weeks ago… I sent my boys up to bring down their dirty clothes, and they came down telling me they found another spider. They trapped it so Daddy, who was not home right then, could see it. He came home, look at it, then rid our house of the vermin, and we all jumped into the van and drove a good 20 minute drive, ate lunch and were sitting around a couple of tables, kids playing, laughter, and chatter. I don’t even remember what we were talking about. What I remember was feeling like there was a hair… shall we say, in my shirt? I, rather nonchalantly, reached from the top of my shirt down to grab said hair, and pulled out… A SPIDER!!! I, with baby in one hand and spider in the other, jumped up, and threw the offender down. Yes, I had a brown recluse in my BRA!!! My husband came over and rescued me by killing it. Something was said about him being jealous of the spider’s view… MEN!!!

The next day boys found another one in their room. This one was dead. And then I went to change the BABY’S sheets… and yes, as I lifted the mattress to put the sheet on, found yet another UNDER THE BABY’S mattress… UGH.

Tonight the boys found yet another in their room. It is only by God’s grace we have not had anyone bitten. There are spider traps all over this house… and they have picked up a couple. For those counting, we’ve now been the in the house for 10 months… and still they are here…

I’m so ready for them to be gone. And yes, I still feel like I have something crawling on me… so if you see me put my hand in my shirt… please forgive me for being rude, but I’m checking for spiders!

Where are you sleeping?

Sigh… sigh… sigh…  Sometimes I wonder if I am cut out to be a mother… I know, it’s a little late… Sometimes my kids bring me to a place where I think I am not able to handle the title of Mom. The other night, T had a dinner meeting, and I was on my own for about 4 hours with 5 kids. I dealt with fights, a hungry, screaming baby, toilet cleaner in the bath water. Sometimes, in the middle of such chaos, I forget just how blessed we are. Then I read things like this:

My sober friend

Oh, wretched person that I am. How can I even think about complaining? Seriously… My life is beyond blessed. I have five unbelievably wonderful kids. We have a big house that keeps the wind/rain/snow/sun off of them when they want to be still/dry/warm/cool. They each have their own bed (though the boys and older girls do share a room, they sleep in their own beds). They have a big back yard to run and climb and swing in. They do not have to sell themselves for their next meal. They do not beg for money. They do not sleep in a dump.

This is where I realize mothering is not just birthing children and keeping them from killing each other. Mothering is about teaching your children to be grateful for all God has given you, while having compassion on those who are in need. Mothering is about helping your kids understand just because it has been given to you does not mean it was for you. Mothering is about helping your kids see a need and meet it, to not walk away and just feel sorry. Mothering is teaching your kids to feel the pain of others without becoming jaded and hard. Sometimes when you are a mother it’s tough to see past the dirty diapers you are swimming in, and find the real lessons in life.

Mothering is about teaching your kids to trust Jesus to meet their needs and to bless Him by being the hands of Jesus to meet someone else’s needs. This is the circle of life we should be working towards. And this will be our goal, until every child sleeps in their own bed.

What were they thinking?

I’m mad. I’m frustrated. I’m sad. But mostly I’m mad.

I wonder, when the rest of the world see’s a headline like this

Saudi Girl, 12, Wins Divorce From 80-Year-Old Husband

what goes through their minds? Maybe they are happy she’s been freed? Maybe they wonder how that happens in the first place? Maybe they wonder why a 12 year old, who should be playing out back with friends, finds herself married? I wonder those too. I also wonder, where does a 12 year old go to live when she divorces her 80 year old husband? Back to the parents who gave sold her into a marriage she didn’t want? I hope not! To live on her own? Again, I hope not! To live with extended family…

Then I read on and I get to this gem of an item: She was married against her wishes to her father’s elderly cousin last year. SERIOUSLY??? Not only is the man old enough to be her GRANDFATHER, he was actually her Dad’s cousin… as in related to her!!!! What is wrong with these people???? (You know, that’s probably as self answering question…)

As far as the being sold into this “marriage” … yes, she was sold into the marriage… The story says: A dowry of 85,000 riyals (about $23,000) was paid and the marriage consummated. OH, I am all kinds of mad! She was sold to her 2nd cousin for sex at 11 years old. This baby girl has been wronged on so many levels. Her family was supposed to protect her, not abandon her. Her family was supposed to love her, not abuse her. Her family was supposed to cheer her on and tell her she could be and do anything her heart dreamed of, not strap her down in utter sexual slavery. (REALLY, what else would an 80 year old man do with an 11/12 year old little girl? It sure wouldn’t be about the conversations they had, and probably not about how well she cooked, or cleaned the house.)

So now the world is cheering that this will probably change the law and set the minimum age for marriage at 16. I don’t know that that’s much better. I just can’t cheer for that. As a matter of fact, I’m having a hard time just getting past this little girl, and where’s she’s going to sleep tonight.

Makes me that much more grateful to God that we live in the United States, and I know my sweet children are going to sleep in their own beds tonight. And it breaks my heart for the other children of the world. Can we just have one big sleep-over at my house?

Mommy Moments

Yep… had one of those today… Oh, it was fun for a bit. Baby A took an early (and LONG – yay!) nap. I was apparently in need of a make-over… Or so 5 year old S thought… and 2 year old K was quick to join in.

This means, they were using kleenex wraps on my feet, plastic lipstick on my lips, a dirty sock to put blush on my cheeks and forehead… They then moved to using a plastic brush and tweezers in my hair (and in the hands of the two year old none the less!), and then…

I’m not really sure how they were discovered, but S and K found my make-up brushes. This, of course, lead to the discovery of my make-up. I, however, had it under control, and told K that was not to be used. I even told S to put the lipstick back where she found it… AND THEN…

Then the phone rang. And I got just a little distracted… This is what I found when I got off the phone:

For the record, she’s crying because she DOESN’T want her picture taken… go figure!

New Hope for Haiti

New Hope Academy (our kids’ school) was asked to sing in a song that will benefit Haiti. That means 200 students were bused to a local recording studio where they spent 2 hours singing the same lines over and over… along with a few minor word changes here and there.

I understand the song will be available on iTunes. I’ll let you know more as I do. I am so proud our kids have been able to take part in this act of giving from Music City, USA to the people of Haiti.

Here’s one of the pictures J’s teacher sent… plus some video that ran on our news today:

WKRN’s video

WSMV’s news story

Here’s WSMV’s video, and you can see S a couple of times… well, her ear in a close up of a boy, and on the front row… you can also see her in the picture below.

The Words a Momma Doesn’t Want to Hear

This week has been a bit rough for our family… mostly with illness, but there have been other added “surprises” too. One of the things T LOVES about our new house is his “man-cave.” That’s the area just behind the garage (if you pull into the garage, there are stairs up to the house, as the garage is under the master bedroom. Behind the stairs is a big area… he’s got a newly acquired set of woodworking tools on one side of the room, and area to set up 5 PS2s, three home theater seats, a projector for movies and the biggest gaming screen possible. It’s guy’s night heaven.

After last Friday’s big gaming night, T’s been sick and at home all week. Well, on and off all week… he has tried a couple of times to go into the office… and those days have kicked his tail each time. He finally went to the dr. yesterday because he could feel the junk settling in his lungs… yes, secondary infection from flu… the dr. said this is what kills people when they get the flu… oh, joy. Not that he was close, just not something you want to mess around with.

J has been having some stomach/head issues… mostly just pain, no actual signs… hopefully he’ll avoid anything stronger. However, we did keep him home from school. G seems fine… hope he stays that way!

Both girls seem to have some diarrhea… K had some this morning and S waited until she got home from school… I guess it was a HUGE mess upstairs as she tried to make it to the toilet but could not… T had the joy of being there and he cleaned it up… I worked with the laundry to be able to clean the clothes (she had her panties off trying to get there, so it was all over everything else) and he just threw her shoes out. K has not been sleeping that well… I don’t know how many more of these sleeping 2-3 hours and then up for the next two hour nights I can take…

Now, my head hurts… my lungs feel heavy… I really don’t want to get sick… sigh… T slept all morning, and then got up at 11 and I slept from 11:30 to 2:15…

So to top it all off tonight, the boys were ALONE in the man-cave playing games, while T was putting the girls to bed, and letting me rest. He was rocking K, who was finally settling down, when J yells from the man-cave the words I don’t ever want to hear again… “DADDY… A SNAKE!” Oh, yes there was… a baby King Snake had found it’s way into the garage. I later learned (when the boys were all upstairs and trying to find pictures on the internet) that J almost stepped on it… UGH!

They trapped it, identified it, asked to keep it, and turned it loose in the woods behind our house. And now they are all three back to playing games. As for me and the girls… it will be a while before we have a girls night in the man-cave…

kingsnake The one the boys found was not this big… it was maybe 10 inches long, but they didn’t take any pictures.


It’s been over a month since my last post… wow!  I knew it had been a while, but I really had no idea. I think I’ve been a bit distracted by this whole move. Now things are starting to slow down and be more “normal” – whatever that is! I’m hoping in a couple more weeks we’ll actually have the build-ins in the closets done, and kids clothes out of boxes!

Honestly, there’s so much that’s been done and said, I can remember very little of it… I call it pregnancy brain… Did you know that pregnancy kills brain cells? I’m a firm believer, and I’ve been pregnant 10 times now… I have very few left!!!

So, that being said, here is the one thing that really stands out to me this week: S was in her pre-k class… she’s been having some issues with NOT following directions from her teacher. She’s so very independent… I have to keep telling myself this IS a good thing. Case in point: while the class was all busy drawing pictures of their houses. S got up, and headed toward the door. Mrs. D asked her where she was going. “I’ll be right back, I’ve just got to run into Franklin for a bit.” Mrs. D told her she needed to sit down. “I said I’ll be right back, I promise. I’ve just got to go look at my house for a minute.” She’s four, how do you argue with that?

S eating frosting while decorating a cake.
S eating frosting while decorating a cake.

Newest Addition

So… it’s been a while since I’ve posted much of anything… or really, since I’ve posted anything. Guess it’s time to come clean…

Part of the reason I haven’t posted has been the fact that I am always… ALWAYS tired these days. And I’ve been nauseous… very nauseous… Which is not easy to deal with when you have four under 10… Yes, I am pregnant. The only time I was really nauseous was with my first… and a little with my second… read with both of my boys. The girls were much easier on me. Does this mean another Bradshaw boy???? We’ll know in August.

There ya have it… The newest Bradshaw will be here on November 30… yes, I know what day… we have scheduled c-sections. As I get more energy, I hope to get back to posting more often.