We headed for Karri's house Friday after yet another continental breakfast. (I kept hoping for eggs and bacon at one of those breakfasts but the hottest we got was a waffle.) We got there just a little while before lunch. Her home is beautiful as is the property they are on. The kids had a great time playing with scooters, go-kart,& four-wheeler. Mostly though, I think they all enjoyed having someone to play with that was not a sibling. We also got to visit with a fellow KY girl, Rebekah, who was visiting with the oldest daughter. The two of them were so good at keeping the peace among the girls that we hardly ever had a fuss. When you are talking about 7 girls ranging from 2-13 that is impressive! Bentleigh and Rebekah are both such fine young ladies-I hope my daughters picked up on some of their behaviors!
Since we were there on the weekend, we offered to help them do some of the yardwork they had already planned. We had been eating and lazing for so many days, we were eager to do something. So we helped enough to catch a little sun and actually burn some calories. That night we may or may not have had blue margaritas and a hot tub soak. I shall never tell, you can just wonder.
Karri's friendship has been such a blessing to me. She has taught me so much about homeschool and how you have to use the flexibility to your advantage. I started out very rigid and regimented but as I learned to relax and enjoy the journey, it has become more of a blessing. It is so easy to burn out when you are too structured, but lack of structure will do you in as well. I guess that is why the co-op works for me right now. I got a little too relaxed. In all things there must be balance, but there also must be joy. Joy is a precarious thing when you are together with your children all the time. Karri is one of those people that make life look so simple and easy. You would never guess that she has five children because she isn't stressed out all the time. I am at least slightly stressed most of the time.
The next day we went to church with them and it was a very stretching experience. I enjoyed it alot. It has gotten me in the word checking on how I feel about some of the issues. That is always a big plus. I am a pretty liberal thinkier when it comes to church denominations. I believe very few of the issues that divide us are heaven or hell. I also trust a sovereign God who will work it all out to HIS glory if we always make sure we are deepening the relationship with Him. The relationship is what is key, not the sign on the building. We left after the potluck and went back to get everything packed up and loaded up to head to Beaumont(actually China, TX)last stop on the TEXAS TORNADO tour.
We arrived at Erik's uncle's house just in time for supper. It was delicious-I don't think we had a bad meal or a small meal when we were gone. Erik's Uncle Roy and Aunt Connie were so happy we came to visit! We visited a bit before bedtime-we were all exhausted! Uncle Roy works very part time as a butcher and he had to get up very early the next day. Aunt Connie also had to work early and we were just pooped from staying up too late the night before. The next morning, Uncle Roy was home by the time we got up(8 ish!) and he made us some wonderful breakfast. Then we drove down to see the lake where he fishes and the property he hunts on, but it was too muddy to go very far back. Later, we ventured into Beaumont to see the sights, which for us was mostly a couple of very large ships that were docked in the Harbor of Beaumont. I have never seen such a large ship in my life. I can't even imagine working on one of those! We tried to see a museum but it was still repairing from the hurricane. It was very troubling to see that there were still so many repairs not made since the hurricane. I can't even imagine what some of the Alabama and Mississippi towns that were so devastated must look like. Of course, all you really hear about is New Orleans and they received so much less damage and so much more money. The sqeakiest wheel.
We left on Monday around 3Pm and headed toward Texarkana. We were again hoping to make it to Little Rock but this time we settled for Hope, AK-home of Bill Clinton. The next morning at breakfast, the hostess kept going on and on about him to fellow travelers. She was talking about how nice he was and how smart Hillary was. I threw up a little. I managed to avoid making eye contact with her because I knew I would be unable to contain myself if she actually spoke those words to me. A quick thank you and we were off to load up and head for KY.
It was so good to get home. We had so much fun and Erik really enjoyed getting to know each of the families we visited better. Texas is awesome.