Living the Constitution and Singing the Blues

This weekend promises to be refreshing after a so-so week.   I spent the morning over one of my favorite breakfasts, a quiet home, and time to think and write—introvert heaven.   Today, I have no real agenda other than to spend some time with my college students, interacting online and grading papers.   I also need to take the oldest to purchase a swimsuit (Tracy at sahmto4ormore turned me on to Target as a possible source).   The first one we purchased redefined a size small as too much of her teenage body popped out of the top and bottom.   If all the data suggests that Americans are getting larger and larger, why do the swimsuits keep getting smaller and smaller?   At any rate, the exchange is now taking forever and a day, and with another beach trip next week (this time to South Padre Island) and we need a back-up plan.


We were studying this week about John Adams as the 2nd American president and his signing of the Alien and Sedition Acts.   These acts were in direct contradiction to the 1st Amendment to the Constitution, and a lesson in the sometimes harsh realities of living by your own words.   We’ve also had some real-life opportunities to apply this lesson as the kids struggle to operate under the very constitution that they created (see here).   Here were some of our realities:


  • Cleaning the car before hopping out is easier said than done when it’s almost 100 degrees outside.
  • ‘Annoying’ can be defined in any number of ways by any number of different people.
  • Loving someone according to 1 Corinthians 13 is downright hard to do all the time (the ‘keeping no record of wrongs’, and ‘not being rude or boastful’ parts are murder).


I haven’t felt so lovable, either, lately.   This summer probably looks more like year-round school than previous ones have.   In addition to our normal “summer maintenance schedule” (math and reading), I wanted to continue history because we fell far behind after not completing our world history studies until this past October (four months into the ’07-’08 school year).    Likewise, I had planned to play catch-up, in a sense, with the youngest after missing a number of days dependent upon what diversions came our way during this past school year.    The kids have felt me breathing down their necks any time I thought the TV was on for too long, and I’m sure they’re having nightmares about the words, “What is your plan for today?”   So, on any given day, our alleged summer break looks a lot like a regular school day.   Throw in the fact that our son is still dancing almost every week until the National Competition late this month, and I’ve yet to truly settle into summer (although the beach was, at least temporarily, very relaxing).


I think what really has me in a funk today is yet another depressing reality.   I wonder if my husband and I are the only ones who find ourselves having to spend money almost as soon as an extra penny comes in.    This month has promised to be a ‘time of rain’ for us, so to speak, and we’ve been so excited about being able to get ahead, to put aside, and to tear up at least 1 of our final 2 debts.   Then, in a matter of weeks, our transmission needed replacement.   That sucked up George Bush’s incentive money plus another $1000.   Funny thing, we were in that category of people who said that we’d save and invest the money, and we wound up spending it anyway.   Then, my husband’s bonus, long awaited, has finally arrived.  Last week at the beach, the oldest bent down over the bay to help her sister wash her hands.   Her eyeglasses left with the tide.   There went $285 on the exam and new glasses, this time including a back-up pair.    During our travels to and from the recital site, I’d noticed that the car (the same one with the shiny new transmission) wasn’t riding the same.   At first I thought that the transmission might be malfunctioning once again, and I was grateful for the warranty on it.   Well, today we found out it wasn’t the transmission.   The back end needed new shocks.   Another $260.   As if all of that weren’t enough, the pity party was in full gear when I couldn’t find my brand new birthday camera anywhere, complete with non-downloaded beach pics.   I’m usually the one to encourage myself and my husband with the Word, but today, I just felt like kicking the proverbial dog.   Fortunately for him, we keep him in the backyard, so I kicked myself instead, at least psychologically.   I’m adding this all up in my head and getting more and more frustrated with life.   I searched the house and cars for hours, to no avail.    Finally, my favorite superhero, or my husband as he’s known more commonly around here, left the house with his handy-dandy flashlight, and within 30 minutes came back in, cape flying, big smile, and my camera.  It had fallen into some cranny in his car where hands don’t fit and eyes don’t normally go.   What do you know?   There is a happy ending after all.

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5 thoughts on “Living the Constitution and Singing the Blues

  1. I know I just commented yesterday but, gosh, this is our experience exactly! Seems the space between what we plan for our money and what we do with it is the biggest hole in the world. Every time I look at our gross income vs. our bills I have to wonder whether we should have just stayed in our apartment and made the kids sleep on the porch.

    Got a lot of questions for you concerning homeschoolers in Texas, send your e-mail 'cause the last one I used didn't work… God Bless!

  2. …I know what you mean about one step forward, one step back with the finances. I once looked at it that way, until I realized it was actually a blessing. The money was there just in time for the car trouble, the broken glasses, the busted water heater, etc. It was God providing ahead of time. When I stopped and looked at it that way, I imagined how stressful life would have been if those events happened when we DIDN'T have a rebate check or a bonus!!! He was gracious enough to prepare us first. 🙂 I hope this will encourage you when it seems like you can't get ahead. We can trust Him for our DAILY bread, and He will provide… every time.

    I hope you're having a better week this week. God bless…


  3. How wonderful that your superhero hubby found the camera. 🙂

    Although I get really discouraged about those kinds of things as well, Karen is right. We were so tickled about that stimulus check, and planned to save it… until our renter lost his job and couldn't pay the rent. So I'm trying to look at things like that as God's perfect timing. Often easier said than done, though.

  4. History or no history, it sounds like you could all use a break~~especially Mom. Can you really be "behind" studying history? Learn what you can learn, and leave how much you cover in God's hands. You have to listen to your body and spirit to tell you when you need a break. I hope you will take some time to rest your mind. Maybe you could do the history 2 or 3 days a week. Or, take a couple of weeks off, then crank back up on it. We usually do a little work through the summer, too, but I've had to let go of those expectations for a while. From the looks of things, it will be mid July before we can do much. I'm going to be okay with that, though, and personally, I am thoroughly enjoying a little guilt-free time off! : )
    I agree with Karen on the way we look at the "extra" money. Being thankful you had it is a concious decision that isn't always easy to make, though. Also, the other thing that I kept thinking was for you to begin praying that God would protect your money and protect things from needing repairs~name specifics. I did this today, in fact.
    I hope your heart is encouraged this week, and the Lord blesses your spirit, your home, and your finances.

I'd love to hear your two cents!!