Friday, September 26, 2008

And Baby Makes Nine!

OK, time for introductions! Courtney is my oldest. She changed my name to "Mom" 16 years ago. What a delight to have her as a daughter! She's beautiful, a great student, and a wonderful volleyball player. She plays this year for Providence Schools, a private school, but they accept home school students into their athletic programs, since they're with the FHSAA (Florida High School Athletic Association) but that is another blog post altogether. If you're wondering how home schooled students can participate in public and high school activities here in Florida, Google the Craig Dickinson Act. (think, Tim Tebow, Heisman trophy winner and currently sophomore at the University of Florida. He was home schooled!) So, we're ready for Courtney's volleyball to get noticed, so we'll have an idea of the direction she'll take for college. I would rather have her play here in town, and go to a local college. I'm not ready for my baby to be grown up and gone yet. One of my 5 best reasons for living, she's my heart! She's twice the young lady I was at her age!

This is Matthew, my oldest son. He's an aspiring actor. At 12 1/2, he plays that guitar whenever he isn't eating or sleeping, taking a short break and playing the computer, or when he is trying to escape his schoolwork. He's really getting very good! One of my 5 best reasons for living, he's my heart! I didn't have brothers growing up. I have one sister, whom I'd consider a best friend (not then, but now, by the Grace of God). So Matthew broke me into the world of little boys quite roughly, without any warnings or preparation. I had no idea what to expect, and though it was love at first sight, It's been a wild ride! He's such a good kid. Witty, brilliant, reserved, contemplative. He's always the one you see in the background of our scrapbook pictures, watching everything. That was true until he discovered acting! Since he began his training with John Robert Powers, he's really come out of himself. My son, who would rather take an "F" than memorize anything, can now memorize and deliver a monologue that will double you over it's so funny. He's put on a sparkle and an intensity that I suspected was there, but he kept hidden. What a wonderful transformation.

He has an agent who said that he would represent him in LA. We're excited about that. I'm not sure what it entails, and I'm not going to be that crazy mom that pushes her son into everything. I'd rather he just do some commercials, maybe a few TV shows, etc. But we're behind him all the way.
This little lady is Rebekah. Goodness GRACIOUS she's growing fast. She's learning how to cook, and is very capable doing anything I ask her to do. She's highly enthusiastic and energetic when it comes to getting things done (and getting her way) and she could easily run our entire house of it were her job. Yay for type-A!! I know she'll do anything she sets her mind to do. She's also a volleyball prodigy. After 6 years of gymnastics, she leaped into volleyball, with her sister's coaching, and is really turning heads on the court. We're hoping for scholarships. That would be really great!!

Rebekah also likes to make jewelry. You'll find some of her creations on my Etsy site at http://laurastaley.etsy.com/. We get to sit together and make stuff, and it's fun to relate that way. She also likes to paint pottery, and do glass etching. I suspect she'll be able to do every craft she sets her hands to, because she does pretty well for a 10 year old already. She has the same restless, itchy, crafty hands that I have. She's another one of my 5 best reasons for living. She's my heart!

And here's my little man. When I was remarried in 2004, I dreamed of having another baby, but it was more wistful imagination than anything. I had the baby bug bad, but was busy working in sign sales, hauling kids All over Florida for sports (we were on two competitive gymnastics teams, and my oldest was playing middle school ball, too. Well, let's just say he was the best souvenir from our first anniversary trip. He's as cute as a Cupie doll, isn't he?

Jimmy seems to think it's his job to crack us up all day. He's a love sponge, and likes to spend time snuggling, playing with his trains, his trucks, and on the computer. Yep, he's a techno junkie. At 2 1/2, he can use the mouse, and navigate around his computer games. Popular titles at the moment are Bob the Builder, Thomas the Tank Engine, and the Tonka Construction series. Since we home school, we have 5 computers, and thank to Broadband and a wireless router we can all use them at once. He also likes to watch classic Disney clips on You Tube. Donald Duck seems to be his favorite. He's developing an interest in space, so look out Buzz Lightyear, here he comes!

This gorgeous hunk of a man is Donald, my husband and best friend. After my divorce, when I was really wanting to feel normal again. You know, go out and have lunch, be normal, have normal friendships, feel attractive, all of that stuff. I put up a profile on Match.com, and this interesting guy emailed me. The part that caught my eye was that he was a believer, and attended church regularly. Wow. A man that seeks and understands accountability! A rare find! That was just the beginning. We were married that next April, on his birthday. He's the most patient man I've ever met. We've had such a great time being married. Here's a picture of us taken in 2004...

Donald came as a package deal, and so did I. We both had 3 previous kids from our previous marriage. When I met his kids, I fell in love with them immediately. It hasn't been the easiest thing to blend two families together, deal with ex's and their issues, and try to maintain respectful relationships between all of the people in our kids' lives, but we've muddled through it. We've made quite a few mistakes, but we've also done some things right. By God's Grace, we will not only get through it but our children will rise above it and beat society's current odds on divorce. Hopefully we'll pass on to them what we've learned.

1 comment:

2 If By Sea said...

Looks like you have a great family, Laura!