|Charlie enjoying the different sound when he plugs his ears.|
For the last two weeks of October one of the seven of us had the stomach flu. I was about to walk in the church building for workout group in the morning when Leia threw up all over the sidewalk. A couple days later she was well, but someone else had it. And so it went, doing enough damage to make me have to rent a carpet cleaner. When the last two kids got it I spent ALL DAY Wednesday and Thursday trying to make sure no one else got it. I cleaned carpets and washed EVERY blanket and piece of clothing, washed all my dishes with bleach, and washed every surface, chairs, couches, walls, light switches, toilets, showers, sinks, etc., and my car! Then I sprayed everything to death with Lysol.
|Dallas is always growing something in our house. These are big anasazi beans.|
Friday morning, on Halloween, Pat and I both woke up sick. It was too late to cancel our parent teacher conferences at 8:30am, so we went to those and then came home and laid on the floor in the living room next to the fire the whole day. I had to laugh at Pat since he got the flu shot again this year. Then at 5:30pm, we mustered up all that was in us and got the kids dressed for Halloween, and went to the trunk or treat. I was doing better than Pat. He looked like death warmed over, but if I had to go, he had to too. We figured at least he looked appropriate for the holiday.
|A pirate at our trunk or treat.|
So he sat in the front of the car, playing with Charles, while I sat in the trunk passing out candy. Yes, I know we shouldn't have done that, but how can you cancel Halloween with four kids who have been getting ready for it?
|Charles-no costume, Leia-princess, Dal-surgeon, Sam-mad scientist, Evan-skeleton.|
As soon as our candy was gone, we got out of there, and went home to die some more. Now the dilemma. Pat was supposed to have 7 scouts and 2 leaders over the next day, all day, to make dinner for their families since they have been practicing their cooking skills weekly for some time. This was the culmination, and we couldn't reschedule- the calendar is so full. So we went to bed deciding that if we still felt awful in the morning, we'd cancel completely. Pat slept fine, I didn't, but we both woke up feeling well, so the party was not cancelled. We spent all morning cleaning the house, AGAIN, Lysoling everything AGAIN, until it was pristine. If felt like someone else's home.
|Enjoying hot chocolate on the church steps.|
Then at 10am Pat went to the church for a baptism and to gather the boys, took the boys shopping, and came back here. Then all day long they proceeded to make a delicious meal (enchiladas, rice, french bread, churros and homemade ice-cream), and served it to their families. Our new neighbors actually offered to have the dinner at their house, so we carried the food over, and it all went great.
Then I turned to the homework I had due for the rest of Saturday night. After doing too much Saturday, I was totally sick again and had to miss church. So Pat took the kids while Charles and I stayed home and napped. I think I lost 5lbs.
|Our chickens started laying eggs! They're so tiny right now and one chicken lays green eggs. Cute!|
By Sunday afternoon, I felt pretty fine, so we had some good family time. We played Apples to Apples which Leia always wins even though she doesn't understand anything. When it's her turn to pick, we all choose cards that say things like, Long Hair, Princess, Fairies, Glitter, or Unicorns, because we know she'll always pick a card like that whether or not it's the correct definition. It's so funny. We laugh so hard!
Then Pat helped Sam make up the homework he missed from missing two days of school. FOR THE LAST 5 HOURS! Note to my mother: Sam cries and is super dramatic and throws his pencil, etc. It's just like when me and you used to do math! So thanks for all those nights you stayed up until the morning trying to help me understand a subject we both dislike. That was 6th grade, and Sam is 5th, but doing 6th grade math, so it's all coming back to me. *smile*
|Leia's school project. Evak looks cold.|
Recently I went to chaperone a youth dance and drove a young man home who needed a ride. Suddenly, also appropriate for the holiday, I felt something crawling on my arm. I calmly picked it up and threw it down, and knew I had just held a large spider. I completely freaked out. I pulled over on the side of the freeway immediately and jumped out of the car getting way too close to passing semi's. I pleaded with the young man to please find the spider and kill it. He was slow and probably didn't understand the life or death situation we were in. Of course we couldn't find it, so with some final jumps, twists, and slaps all over my body, I got in the death trap and began to drive. Then right away I spotted it. Pulled over again. Instructed the young man to get it out of the car. He was too slow again. He lost it. We drove on. I spotted it again. Yelled step on it! Finally my hero killed the spider and I drove the rest of the way slapping myself all over for good measure. Every hair on my body was standing up and I was trying to swallow my beating heart back down into my chest. If I didn't have a responsibility to get that young man home, I would have called Pat from the side of the freeway to come and pick me up and never gotten back in my car at all.
|Evan and Charlie's snowman.|
On to better news, our most excellent principal at my kids charter school is retiring. They pulled him out of retirement to help start up the school and now he's gone. They had a farewell dance for him. Sam's class did the COOLEST presentation ever. They knighted him. It was a Renaissance dance after all! They crowned his wife, and knighted him and then Sam bowed low, head down, with his arms extended holding out a sword across his arms for Dr. Miller. All the kids in Sam's class had a small part, but Sam's part was perfect for him since they play like that at home all the time. His teacher said they came up with it all on their own. Yep. I believe it. Then we had a great school dance and though I did not dance my brains out, I got my dance on considerably. I love the school dances. I always have to leave early because of our young ones. All the boys danced a lot too, and Sam was positively amazing!
I always pick the kids up after school in my carpool arrangement, and one day I got there about 20 minutes early so I turned off the car in the pick-up line and got Charles out of his seat to play, and rolled down all the windows. The sun was shining, the sky so blue, with a slight breeze so I laid across the two front seats feeling like I was on a remote beach somewhere. It was so peaceful, like a mini vacation. Until a voice said, "Wake up!", and I realized I had fallen asleep and the pick-up line was six cars ahead and everyone behind me was all annoyed at me for not moving up. It was one of the crossing guards who had woken me and I was so startled I screamed! Pat has had a ton of work lately and is doing close to 60 hour weeks. He goes in some mornings at 3:30am, so he can still try to come home no later than 6pm. Blah. I have been doing a lot of things he normally does to not overwork him, but with my homework keeping me up each night, it's no wonder I'm tired!
I got a great guest DJ for the New Years dance coming up. I wish my sister could come dance with me. Although I just tried dancing in my own house holding Charles and fell backward over something and landed hard on the floor. Maybe I shouldn't dance! I cried but we were okay. Sam came and laid his head on me and stroked my hair while I cried. I guess I was just glad we were okay.
Another great year of soccer ended, and really it was such a great year! We loved both our coaches and our boys all improved and had so much fun! We weren't sure how it'd be having Dallas and Sam on the same team, because Sam was right in the middle and could have equally gone down and been on Evan's team, which we thought might be good for him to be the oldest instead of the youngest. But his level of play rose to the occasion and their team dominated. They were undefeated and had a blast. The only thing slightly unsettling was that since it was co-ed, there were one or two girls who came scantily clad to each practice and were flirting hard. They were good players, but I wasn't ready for that.
Evan is a great defender and even scored some goals! The first goal he scored for the year, his coach, who loves Evan, was ecstatic! But I was cleaning red ants off of Charles who had gotten into an ant hill and missed the whole thing. I cheered like I had seen it though, and said to the parents, I guess I'll have to watch the replay.
Leia has been just as cute as ever lately. She has all these cute sayings, "Oopsie Spaghetti-O", instead of Uh-oh spaghetti-o. "Mom, do I look perfect in my pajamas?", "Sweet Fish", for Swedish Fish, "I love you and like you!", instead of just I love you. Last night she said, "Mom, you are the best mom I ever saw!" She loves doing school with me and Evan and she is always excited and happy. She laughs her way through everything. When she messes up, she proclaims cheerily, "That's okay!". She loves her primary class and going to primary. We just had our primary program and it was her first and Dallas's last. She has won the title of loudest singer, holding notes in a loud shout long past when everyone else has moved on.
|Friends and good ol' bean dip.|
The kids all did great in the primary program, but the best part that made me die laughing inside was Dallas and his friend Larry. During a slow song they synchronized a swaying motion in a circle as they sang. I may have been the only one who noticed, but I asked them later if they planned it and they had. Dallas said, it's just a song that makes me feel like I'm floating or going to sleep. So they floated in perfect unison. The best primary programs make me laugh like that. Between that and Leia, it was hilarious. Sam said his part forcefully, like he dared anyone to challenge him otherwise, and Evan was all sweetness and goodness. It's really too bad you couldn't hear Leia's "Follow the Prophet!" shout. So cute.
Evan just asked Leia if she wanted to marry Charlie. Leia said yes. Evan said, "But you shouldn't! Then your baby will have a leg coming out of it's head!" He set her up just so he could say that :)