All the creatures were stirring (except for the mouse)
The bags were all packed and the lunches were made
but everyone was feeling crazy because...
Forget it. I'm no good at poetry.
So, it's 5:30 on Tuesday night and I'm getting the kids into the car to head out real quickly when I realize that I have no idea where my keys are. The thing was, I remembered having them in my hands and then...not in my hands.
I searched the entire car. I searched the garage: under the car, under the tractor, in between and under the myriad of bikes and scooters and toys (good grief, do we really need all this stuff??). I searched the bathroom. The kitchen. The living room. I had the kids help. All to no avail. No keys to be found. Anywhere.
It's getting later, and Matthew, who knows we needed those keys to be able to go grocery shopping tomorrow, begins to panic and cry, "We're never going to be able to get food! We're going to starve!!!"
If I hadn't been so bothered and panicky myself about the fact that I can't find the keys that I need to take the kids to their first day of Wednesday school early the next morning, I would have found his statement to be a bit more humorous.
You may be thinking, just use your husband's keys or car. But, alas, I couldn't. He had just left that afternoon to go on a work trip. A work trip that I was planning on meeting him at the following day, after picking the kids up from school, with the car and the keys...that were still missing. He had the only other set of keys for both cars.
It also happened to be the case that both sets of our parents were out of town. And by out of town (because they both happen to not live in our town anyway), I mean Alaska and Out West. Who told them they could go on vacation?
I know of no one who lives fairly close to me who works or takes their kids to school near where I needed to be going at 7:50 the next morning.
I messaged some friends who homeschool and who also have older kids that could possibly watch the younger ones while their moms dug me out of this mess, but that didn't seem to be working out so well.
Then, headache growing as the time is ticking away, around 9pm I called my new neighbor to ask if I could borrow her van. I told her to think about it and let me know. She didn't even hesitate. "Come on over and pick it up right now."
All those pent up thoughts of, Holy cow! I can't believe I'm going to miss the kids first day of school and miss going on vacation with my husband all because I can't remember where I put my stupid keys!!, came rushing out and I cried right there on the phone with a lady I barely know.
She hugged me tight when I came over and again let me know that I can ask her for anything. "Don't worry about it, honey. You use my van as much as you need."
She is a blessing from the Lord.
When I got back home, feeling so worn out and tired, but so relieved, I put all the exhausted children to bed, and then I heard,
"MOM! Come quick!!!" With how the evening was going, I was sure something bad must have happened. I ran into the boys' room and there was Jonny sitting on his bed pointing to the lost, now found (almost 4 hours later) keys.
I sat on his bed and we all laughed the laughter that comes when you feel relieved and puzzled and so happy all at the same time.
I kissed and hugged my "Finder Boy" (an affectionate term for Jonny who, seriously, finds everything that is missing whether you knew it was missing or not) and then returned the van to a chuckling neighbor.
The next day, I used my own vehicle (thank you LORD!) to drop my oldest two off at their first day of Wednesday school.
Jonny clung to me and cried. I finally had to pull him off and tell his teacher to take him. I spent all day praying for him to have a fun day. I was curious when I went to pick him up what the verdict would be. He was all smiles, and his teacher said he was sad for about two minutes before he perked up and had a great day. YAY!
He answered confidently, but sweetly. "Nope. I didn't need one because I didn't miss you. Actually, I didn't even think about you all day. I don't know why..."
Laughing, I told him, "I know why! I prayed for you!"
I'm so glad his day went well. I wanted him to have fun without feeling sad and missing me.
When I went to drop off Emilia, most of the kids in her class were already at their seats, so she went right in and hung her stuff on a hook. I had to get her to pose for a quick picture, and then she was off. She even forgot a hug, which was (mostly) fine with me after being mauled in Jonny's class. ;)
She also had a terrific day.
They were full of stories and new facts and information when they came home. They had fun, learned new things, met new people. They seemed a little taller maybe...a little older...a little more secure.
Right after I picked them up, we headed up north to meet Nate at the hotel where his conference was held and had a really fun mini vacation that included a spontaneous overnight stay at Great Wolf Lodge. The kids were thrilled (okay, I was too - those water slides were fun!).
It was a fun way to welcome in our new school year!