Reprieve (n): . an interruption in the intensity or amount of something

It's's been raining. Today was the last day of school. The introduction to summer vacation, but the weather warranted tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwhiches followed by a family movie curled up under blankets to stay warm. Baseball was cancelled last night...actually, it's been raining so much that we now have six games to make up and we're only a week into the season!

The last several weeks have been full speed ahead. Not like that is anything out of the ordinary, but May has the tendency to be a month absolutely loaded to the brim of the calendar. Baseball, graduations, weddings, finals, end-of-the-school-year projects and celebrations, concerts and recitals, baseball, tea parties, gardens and yard work, preparation for vacation travel, etc, etc, etc. The days are longer, bedtime is harder, little brains (and big ones too) have checked out in anticipation of summer.

In a nutshell, Sunday through Saturday has been busy from sun up until sun-down. There has been something to go to, get to, be at, prepare for, send something to, plan, or organize. When it gets like this, we don't sit down together very much. We are all separately together somehow...Tim has three going in one direction and I have four heading another. We've not yet reached a point of sending them out the door without one of us. I know it will come. It's not necessarily a different experience than before, just different dynamics.

We've been busy before, now we're just busier, or busy-different. We're growing into the next phase. People often offer that it doesn't get better...I don't think it's bad, it's just that when it gets like this, it's a good place to learn how to rebalance things a bit.
I'm a planner...I used to be organized too, which was a good combination. Now, I'm just a scheduler and I try to schedule survival in too. :) My physical calendar is inked up to at least show me which direction I'm headed, or who to direct where. All is good when the schedule goes as scheduled. I'm also a procrastinator. I do my best work at the last minute. It's not a feature I'm eager to pass along to my children. There is a fair amount of stress and sleep loss that goes with this one. I'm learning to just let some things go too.   We've packed a lot of PB&J lately!

The reprieve assisted my procrastination, as I finally sat down and got all the end-of-the-year teacher gifts done.  If I could gift each one of them lavish and luxourious things, I certainly would...these amazing individuals do such a great job of teaching and caring for and molding and loving our kids.  I can't begin to show my gratitude in the way that I'd like...but I know they enjoy the bags!  :)

I haven't taken the time to dedicate a post to the Little Flowers tea and badge ceremony that was held the first part of the month, so I'll include pictures here since it was another part of our busy month.

 Each of the girls was presented with a rose to match the color of their group...Mathilda is part of the white rose group...and their sashes donned by Monsignor, followed by a tea party that was perfect for each of these beautiful little girls...and their moms too!  Tea parties should definitely happen more often!

Last day of school...the kids and their teachers:

She's a mighty special one who touched Joshua's heart in a big way.

...and I think it takes a special one to put up with this joker too!  :)
Mathilda and her buddy from 5th grade.

Very excited 5th...err...6th graders!

The rain on Tuesday brought a bit of reprieve...cancelled ball games, no where to be.  It gave me a chance to catch up during normal hours on things that were going to have to wait until wee hours.  The reprieve was welcome even though it was unplanned, but with it comes the reschedule...which gets a little tricky and may cause some calendar days to seem upside down.  Tonight's schedule was also thrown off by more rain...a good time to unwind from the events of the prior few weeks.  There is nothing quite like vegging on the couch when the sky is gray and the windows are wet. 

Tomorrow we begin a new phase...summer vacation.  We're always modifying routines, structure or lack there of, and responsibilities.  Stay tuned...I'm sure we'll have some crazy ideas and hopefully a few winners that provide some calm, some fun, some discipline, some growth, some learning and some good ole fashioned hard work in there somewhere too. 

Happy beginning of summer!