Monday, July 29

When you lose your temper and God redeems

Right now, my head is pounding, like I almost can't see straight and if the ibuprofen doesn't kick in soon this blog post might not happen. But the feelings are fresh and there is grace in the writing, so I write. And I find the gifts in the writing, so many gifts, today.


It started this morning before 8am... BEFORE 8AM!!!!  I was on a roll, cleaning out the fridge, making myself a quick breakfast (ya know, put on your own oxygen mask before you help those around you kind of thing) and all of a sudden, four kids who had been happily playing and reading without me all rushed me at once. One is starving, one needs help, one just needs mommy, one is looking for her lost tattoos... and I kinda lost it.

Especially when the one with the lost tattoos was told... "They must have gotten thrown out and No, you aren't digging in the trash after them, I just cleaned out the fridge...." She's my give-100%-in-everything kind of girl--even minor tragedy.  Can I ask how long is healthy for a child to cry, weep, mourn over temporary tattoos?  Because I had no sympathy, and the more she cried the more frustrated I got. It wasn't pretty!

After a couple of false starts, I was fed, they were fed, they got dressed, and I prepared for an errand day--not what I wanted to do with 4 kids, but desperately needed... Aldi, Target, Wegmans, the library...  Word to the wise--if you are planning a day like this, be ready to leave before 9 AM, don't wait until it's past 10:30 to finally get loaded into the van. (not that I speak from experience or anything).

I breathed deeply, I prayed hard, even if it was one of those "worry prayers" Ann Voskamp talked about. I knew this had to be done, I knew it wasn't going to be easy. I wasn't praying for perfect kids, I was praying for a right response from their very imperfect mother. I was armed with a reminder to be gentle from Holley Gerth and these verses in John 20:30-31 ... I could truly live LIFE through Jesus Name.

And we were off after a quick phone call with a friend who we were trying to connect with at the library... may the stars align just perfect for timing, please?

Now, I love Aldi-- in and out, few choices to make, only a handful of rows to walk through... BUT they recently renovated and rearranged my Aldi, making it difficult to find a few things. AND they have been out of their Fit and Active Granola the last 2 times I've been in there... gonna get desperate soon!  But we made it without major incident!

Then on to Target, where I purchased at least 3 items that upon returning home, I found in my pantry shelves... horrible planning on my part, but I'm stocked now, right!  The hardest part of this trip was the dreaded shopping-for-a-birthday-party-present-for-a-friend moment with the child who LOVES to give... and for which money is no concept... WHat? I have a budget? I can only spend HOW MUCH? what does that mean? Does that mean I can't get this collection of Disney princesses for $80??!?!  Oh, but I breathed deeply and gave her a time limit... and kept the clock ticking and gave a final --- "choose between these two items, please" and we were on our way.

Getting hungry by now, but horribly tired of fast food after the crazy summer we have had, I decided lunchables from Wegmans would be the way to go for the kids, while I would order a quick sub from the Market Cafe. Piece of cake... blessed all the way around, even though my head started spinning as I helped assemble mini pizzas and tiny chicken tacos! I was going down... Wkids to the rescue!! Did you know that Wegmans has this AWESOME childcare option for potty trained kids 3-8! Drop your kid off in the little play area and they color, play with blocks, watch movies and have fun while MOM shops in quiet!! Ahhh, delightful!! 

and would you believe, that they got tattoos at the Wkids... the exact one that she lost this morning! (#1000gifts) ... and then another one at the library reading program! Yes, God cares for little girls, even when it's a tattoo!!

I met up with said library friend at Wegmans, she had shopping, too! My son is too old for the Wkids, so her boy and my boy got to shop with us, they entertained each other while we chatted and shopped! More delight!  Then I bought a bag of ice for the coolers I remembered to throw in my trunk. We packed our groceries, chilled them and headed to the library.

This post is getting as long as my day was. We survived the library, also with minimal freakouts, but my head was starting to pound. It had been a full day of sensory overload for me... and was now nearing 5:00! WOW, what a day.

Home to unload groceries and make dinner... I did a copout and made Macaroni and Cheese... from a box... Wegmans brand! And everyone was happy and the kids watched a movie and I cleaned up the kitchen and cleaned up clutter in my bedroom, and cleaned up piles and piles of books that were collecting but not being read (really, I just moved all the piles to the basement so they couldn't be seen...) and my bedroom looks so much more peaceful!

And said movie was taking longer than I thought it should, and I was ready for the kids to be in BED! Dear Husband had left (before 8AM) for work and had a meeting after work and we hadn't seen him all day... and I hadn't received the "on my way home" text, yet. I had had a long day and it was time to punch out (why is it that moms don't get a time card?? Oh yeah, because we are heros, champions... real!) and some how even though I asked a million times for the books to be picked up and shoes to be put away and potty runs to be taken, when it was time for bed, those things still weren't done... And I lost it... and there was yelling... and then deep breaths and another walk through what needed to be done and a final, GET IN YOUR BED!

Then I calmly got up, gave good night kisses, spent a moment with each kid talking about their favorite things of the day and tucking them in, turning out the lights and closing the doors and coming out to write and count the gifts... and I've only had 3 interruptions while writing said post... all handled in a calm, cool, collected fashion.

And so on Monday night before I crawl into bed, I count the gifts.

~food to eat
~coffee every morning
~spending time in God's Word
~LIFE in Jesus
~Christian radio stations
~a van for running errands
~coolers for groceries
~said groceries
~the $1 section at Target
~allergy medicine
~lunchables at Wegmans
~childcare while shopping
~fresh fruits and veggies
~a bag of ice for $1.89
~library books
~free movies from the library
~mac and cheese from a box
~temporary tattoos
~iced coffee
~medicine for headaches
~blogposts that encourage
~hubby returning home safe

If you are still with me after that extremely long journal entry...

Community Conversation: What's the most kids you have ever taken grocery shopping? How many stores did you stop at? How has God redeemed one of your bad days?


  1. ((hugs)) Julie! I'm hearing you on the late starts out and the many errands. It's nothing we do too often. Yet, it seems that when the day is okay, the end--which they're trying to drag out and seemingly torture me--never comes fast enough. But the blessings and the grateful moments are too numerous to count!

    Looking forward to hearing about the next outing.

  2. Hi Julie,

    Nice to meet you. I'm hopping over from Ann's link up. Fun to peek into your day, and oh I can relate to mom meltdowns. Aren't you thankful for our God's tender patience? :)

    Have a great week. Thankful for coffee in the mornings too, :)

    Jennifer Dougan

  3. Oh, wow! Just reading this post wore me out!!! I only had one child, a son.(I think I know why, now!) Even in the midst of a crazy day, you found so much to give thanks for!! Praise God!!!
    Blessings to you! Ann @ Christ in the Clouds (


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