Monday, June 16, 2008

VBS, Viruses, and Vigorous Cleaning

Whew! What a busy weekend!

It all started on Friday morning. (But I couldn't come up with a "V" word for tooth extraction...) I chauffeured my sweet, 20 yo, football playing nephew to the oral surgeon for removal of his wisdom teeth. Isn't he cute? =====>

His mother lives in S. Florida. She was frantic because her baby boy was having this procedure done without her here to oversee the process and recovery. She asked me to be the "mom" figure in her stead. Although he had a morning appointment, it stretched out until after 2 pm before we were headed back to the 'man cave.'

After a very frustrating, unsuccessful trip to CVS (don't get me started!) to have his 3 prescriptions filled, we ended up at a very quiet and pleasant Publix Pharmacy on Ocala Road. At Publix, we were able to fill all 3 prescriptions and one (the antibiotic) was free!

So, by 3:30 pm, he was finally ready to take his medication and head to LaLa Land. As requested, I did the "mom" thing and made him write down instructions, times of meds, and what his diet would consist of for the next three days.

He was very proud that he had cleaned his bedroom the day before, so I dutifully inspected the clean and orderly space. I didn't mention that it was too bad he didn't wipe the coffee table, the counters or the growing on the couch in the shared area of the apartment. (He says his roommate is a slob and he refuses to clean up after him any more.) As a result, I didn't feel guilty in the least as I put my feet up on the coffee table. I didn't DARE take my shoes off!!!! Maybe he neglected that part so I would feel at home?

As he closed his eyes to relax and nap...his cell phone kept ringing with well-wishers. So, I did the "mom" thing again and took the phone away and turned the ringer off. (Okay, he was fast asleep when I took it...but I would have wrestled it out of his hand if I had to!) As I sat on the questionably safe couch in his very 'male' apartment, I reflected on how fast that young man has grown up and what a good catch he will be for some lucky girl!

After about 2 hours of supervising my nephew's snores, my sweet dd called; letting me know she was almost in town. This meant I had to leave the pretend "mom" thing and go do the REAL "mom" thing. Nobody had to call me twice! I was absolutely ready to squeeze my girl.

Her ride from camp arrived at our rendezvous point at nearly the same time as I. Please excuse my nimiety, but you cannot imagine the sweet sensation of wrapping my arms around that girl! She looked so tanned and happy; had she really grown a foot taller in only one week?

We had a wonderful ride home; she nearly talked my ear off about the fun she had at camp. It amazed me that I didn't have to prod with leading questions. LOL! I think it helped that "their weren't any troublemakers" this year (specifically, our foster-dd!). It seems that Mr. Craig had scheduled the youngest teens for an earlier training time; thus allowing the smaller group of older teens to get to know each other better than in previous years. Camp Charis rocks!!! (Her words.)

After a 'Welcome Home' dinner on Friday night; I laid out our weekend schedule. First, the bad news. On Saturday morning, we were committed to going to Papa and Granny's house (the one vacated after 45+ years) to help my SIL clean prior to them moving back in. (LONG STORY!!) Then, on Sunday, we would be celebrating Father's Day AND decorating our room for Vacation Bible School (VBS!). Not much time for riding her horses, but I assured her she would live through a few more days of deprivation.

Saturday morning. Here is where the VIGOROUS CLEANING comes in. Ugh! My SIL, her dd, my dd and me spent the day pretending to be Super-cleaners. After 6 hours of hard labor (by hard labor, I mean scrub to the bone, arms falling off, hard labor!), we got exactly 2 bathrooms, 1 master bedroom, 1 hall and a few windows DEEP cleaned. We scrubbed walls, windows, floors, baseboards, ceiling fans, and cleaned out closets and bathroom cabinets; trying to eliminate years and years of nicotine from the walls and dog hair from the floors. Just by myself, I probably went through 1/2 a box of latex gloves. It was not a pretty job! ~By 4pm, every muscle and bone in my body cried out for relief! I was actually thankful to have VBS ahead of me in the coming week. (I'm just a lazy bum!)

I just don't know how my SIL does it. She is like an energizer bunny cleaning machine! She has already spent many days trying to get 45+ years of living cleaned up into something habitable again. Pray for her. She still has the kitchen ahead of her. Her SIL hasn't been much help in this endeavor. (I'm just a lazy bum!)

So, Sunday arrives. As I levered my etiolated body out of the bed, I quickly decided that Father's Day would not start with a delicious hot breakfast. It took great depths of sheer willpower just to drag my aching body to the shower. Cook breakfast? Are you crazy? Since I knew we would be feasting in our friend's home for lunch after church, I didn't feel too much guilt. (This reasoning would come back to haunt me later; my friend called as we left for church to cancel our lunch date, since she wasn't feeling well.)

We went to Plan B for lunch. Thankfully, I had had the foresight to move a bag of steaks from the freezer to the fridge on Saturday in order to thaw them for a Sunday or Monday night dinner. So, to honor Mr. Fix-It as World's Best Dad, our yummy lunch consisted of steak on the grill, mashed potatoes (or smashed taters, as I like to call them!), corn-on-the-cob and fresh, home-made Egg Bread. Not bad for Plan B, huh!

Later, after an extremely abbreviated Sunday nap, dd and I headed for town to decorate our teaching space for VBS. Our theme this year is Outrigger Island; a Hawaiian theme. Now folks, I would be happy to teach VBS for 3 weeks rather than have to decorate a room! There isn't a creative bone in my body as far as I know. I can copy things...but don't ask me to come up with an original idea! So after spending nearly FIVE hours turning our little space into a Tiki Hut on the beach--complete with palm trees--we were finally ready to head home; with only another two hours or so, of VBS preparation ahead of us!

This is where the VIRUS comes in! As I wearily fixed myself a sandwich, I hear this exclamation coming from the living room: "What is WRONG?? This thing is going crazy!!! MOM!!!!" This did not sound promising since I knew dd was checking her e-mail and My-Space on the computer. I drug my tired body (with the even more tired mind) into the room to see what the commotion was about. Sure enough, the computer screen was having convulsions. My first thought--correctly-- was VIRUS!!! So I spent the next two hours trying to outsmart this crazy computer that I know hardly anything about! (Still don't know if that pesky virus code is gone or just hiding and ready to jump out at any moment!) Why do people think creating and sending viruses is a fun thing to do? What kind of person finds pleasure in this? One day, I would like to meet one of these folks so I can ask before I shoot them! (JK!)

Oh, well. Monday morning came quickly; and with it our first day of VBS. We're teaching 3rd graders. Most of them are really sweet and easily entertained. Hopefully, they will learn something about Jesus before this week is over. Our theme for today is "God is real!" Oh, my dear children...HE REALLY IS! If they only learn this one thing, it will all be worth every moment.

Stay tuned!

4 Click here to Comment!:

mamajil said...


WoW you did have a packed weekend!!

I would love to see pics of your vbs decorations....I am one of those odd ducks that loves vbs!! Ours starts on this coming Sun.

So has your DD found some time to go riding?? :)

Mama Weso said...

Great post. Thoroughly enjoyed it except for trying to remember the 2 new words you used that I don't know but I can't remember them to look them up because you used TWO and I an only copy and paste ONE at a time. Very naughty of you. Enjoy VBS!

Kelley said...

1. Adorable nephew (I'm assuming he won't wait 20 or so years for my little girl to grow up?)

2. Great plan B!

3. I feel your pain (I'm sore just from packing up a few boxes).

4. Happy vbs-ing!

Debbie said...

We have SO much in common now, Mary.
Our blogs, our use of big words (you have obviously found my secret source at!), our children home from The Best Week Ever at Camp Charis, and now....a virus. Because while I've been catching up on your blog - I've had at least 50 (absolutely not exaggeration!!!) ads pop up for antispy software to buy. I keep clicking on NO THANKS, then a little box pops up that says, "Continue Unprotected?" - but the obviously sense some doubt in my clicking since they keep asking me the same durn question over and over and over.

Off to fume (and clean house...I'm inspired from reading about your sil.)