We had a family day today.....
We got up at 7:30 for a 9am church service at Christ Community Church. This is not our usual church--but we had soccer games, starting at noon today, and Fox Valley Bible Church (our church for the last 16 years) only has one service now, which doesn't let out until noon. So, rather than miss church again, we decided to go to another church this morning. We told the kids this church would be a bit different.....it is a Mega Church, it is HUGE. Ben was not keen about going somewhere else....but we told him to think of it as an "experience". It was. Two large screens flanked the stage, advanced media and lights accompanied every song, scripture reading, and announcement. Nathan announced mid-service that he wanted to switch churches, this one was "awesome".......Jake was fascinated by the colored dancing lights and big production of everything, and announced in the car coming home that even though he saw his school principal there, he'd like to go this church from now on, too. I enjoyed the worship time, believe it or not, even though generally I am much more conservative now than when I was younger. Matt mentioned that he really appreciated the sermon, (as did I), and in true dad form, noticed the efficiency of the people guiding traffic in the parking lot. Ben, who I was convinced would have loved the music, and would declare the guitar solos "amazing".....said simply "I didn't like it". Maybe it all was a bit too much. Of course, Ben was not happy most of the day--we were terribly unfair to him apparently, saying that today would be a "family day" and we would be spending the whole day together as a family. Which of course, for a teenager is complete and utter torture.
After briefly coming home and changing clothes, and me preparing sandwiches, veggies, chips, and drinks to bring in the cooler for a picnic lunch, we were off to the soccer games.
Without boring you with too many details....Nathan won his game, 4-2. Jacob lost his game (and undefeated streak) in Penalty Kicks. Matt uncharacteristically almost got himself in trouble with the ref for yelling about an unfair call (usually he is much more quiet than this). The boys occupied themselves with kicking the ball around between games, and joking around with eachother a bit (when Ben wasn't making a point of telling us how UNFAIR it was to make him come to the games today.)
By the time we made it back home, it was 5:30pm. We were all a bit tired, sunkissed and wind "damaged"....and by that I mean, chapped lips, dry mouthed, and hair completely windblown (me, anyway!) Ben tried to go off with a friend immediately....again very obviously "ticked" when we told him NO. We were going to go out to eat together, too, for dinner.
How cruel can parents be??? We had dinner at Baker's Square, and while Ben started off the meal with a very grouchy demeanor, I daresay he cracked a smile or two by the end of his French Dip.
When we got home, all pooped and full.....we decided to watch "Chuck" a new show that both Ben and Matt had seen before, but wanted to see again. (We TiVo-ed it, I guess.) I decided that I actually liked this show, even though I prejudged it as being one I would dislike strongly.
All in all.....it was a nice day, even though the number of disagreements among kids and parental units was more than my liking.....(mostly just with the determined teenager trying to beg for friend time).
I suppose, so you don't think we are ogres, I should mention that Ben did get to spend Friday night at the High School Homecoming game, and then Saturday evening at a friend's house for three hours. We really were NOT trying to just take away the fun of being a teen. :0) I just wish spending time with us was one of his "Top Ten Things to Do" on a weekend! :0) But, as I have been told--this would be going against the inate characteristics of the teen species.
And to think, this is just the first time we are going through this!! Two more "I think the world should revolve around me", hormone driven, cranky-pants, coming up before we know it. God prepare my heart......and give me the patience and energy necessary to survive!