Monday, January 25, 2010

Teen Report

Writing about B19's birthday made me realize how long it's been since I've updated on the teens in our home!

With his graduation from high school looming, there is so much to be done. The first thing, we hope, is getting his driver's license. He's been putting in the hours and probably has logged enough, but passing his driving test may be a bigger hurdle than we thought, as he is just not very comfortable behind the wheel and may have trouble processing the instructor's auditory instructions, especially in a stressful situation like a test. But he really needs to be able to get himself to work and classes, so we are praying and trying to give him lots of opportunities behind the wheel.

The next domino will be getting a job, so he can help pay for car insurance, gas and the computer classes he'd like to take beginning next fall. We need to investigate his local options: there is UW-Parkside, which has both 2- and 4-year degrees, College of Lake County (IL), a community college, and Gateway Tech, which offers various certifications and degrees. He's planning to live at home while working and taking classes, and we'll appreciate his continued help with chores, babysitting and errands, once he gets his license. Lots of transitions ahead for him and us--prayer appreciated!

Now, Blondechick17. You may recall that she half-reluctantly agreed to transfer to a Christian school this year, as a junior. Well, she ended up being SO grateful and SO thankful that we urged her to switch! She's made many new friends. She likes her teachers. She especially enjoys being in concert choir, but her favorite thing about her new school is CHAPEL. "Why is it only once a week?" she complains every Thursday, after telling me about the amazing speaker or the awesome worship or whatever it was that God used to speak to her during that time. Her faith is growing stronger and more solid every week, and we feel so grateful to God for the way He is answering our anxious prayers of over a year ago. Those concerns couldn't be aired on this blog, of course, but they were very real, and she is as grateful as we are for how God has turned her life toward a better path. But it was she who submitted to Him and to us, and we are so encouraged and proud of her!

She is keeping busy with homework--LOTS of it--more like what we'd expect of a college prep course of study, and then some! Outside of school hours, last fall she rehearsed every weekend for her part as the Sour Kangaroo in Seussical, and also helped out as an aide in the Beginning Musical Theater class. She choreographed both numbers that the class performed in their final Showcase, which was a new and great experience for her. She's aiding again this winter session in the same class but opted not to audition for Mulan, so she could join Show Choir and Student Government at her school. She's been taking guitar lessons too, all year, and she just finished Driver's Ed classes, although she's had her permit since November. She should be getting her license in April--look out!

Bantam14, you remember, pushed us to let him go full-time, not just part-time, in the 8th grade at the same Christian school as Blondechick. Our biggest concern was the adjustment to the homework load, and sure enough, that has been a struggle for one who isn't the fastest at handwriting or keyboarding or skimming textbooks or catching on to math concepts. But we have seen such perseverance and diligence in this young man! Even when he is feeling overwhelmed, he plugs doggedly away.

He's doing very well in his classes, considering, and he really likes the school--the kids, the teachers, chapel, and especially gym. They've been playing one team sport after another, and his height and maturity, age-wise, have given him an enjoyable advantage. He's also taking choir, at our urging and with the strong encouragement of his older sister, and at the Fall Concert, he looked so handsome in his white shirt, black vest and black bow tie. He sounded good too!

He's also attending theater classes and rehearsals, taking guitar lessons with Blondechick, and in his spare time, he likes to listen to music and trade albums and band recommendations with friends--mostly Christian bands, but other worthwhile ones too. At least, the ones he shares with us are worthwhile, and we have to try to stay on top of the rest.

Ah, the joys of having teenagers! They are a daily challenge (nightly too--as when they ask you to help them study for a test at 11 p.m. on Sunday night), but it is rewarding and exciting to see them progressing spiritually, academically, and relationally, becoming their own persons more and more every day. I thank God for them and pray for the wisdom and the patience I need to get through each day with them. And I praise God for how He is able to fill in for my lacks!


Linds said...

They are grwoing so fast, Jeanne - and you must be so proud of them all! Raising interesting and interested kids is a real challenge, and you are doing brilliantly!

MomCO3 said...

Wow! Thanks for the update.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful update! We pray for you always and for them...Love, Pianomum