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Sunday, April 12, 2009

I am in mourning

Dear Friends and Family,

This week started off with a whimper. Me sitting in bed hearing Robyn get out of bed yet again. I realized that what was bringing me so low was realizing what I was loosing - "me" time. With her new bed Robyn decided she no longer needed to sleep and didn't think she should waste any valuable playing time by staying in bed either. And with the lack of sleep came the general crankiness, tantrums and constantly in your face talking or whining that drives a strong woman to some serious chocolate binging with "mom, mom, what are you eating, mom can I have some, can I, can I, can I". Even my exercise time became one of exasperation. No longer was she content to sit in the next room for her special cartoon time. She needed to be swinging on the treadmill or jumping on my stomach while I did sit-ups.

Tuesday night I gave myself a little slap up on the side of the head to stop mourning the easiness of yesterday and work on today. So Wednesday I ran laps around the gymnastics building during her class to get the endorphins flowing and spent nap time sitting guard on her door and putting her back into bed constantly till after 2 hours I quit. Wednesday night was a repeat of the same till she fell asleep shortly before I crashed. I started reviewing my tough moma mantras. My mom used to be called the "tough grandma" by my kids (said in a very loving, respectful way of course :) ) but there would have been no sneaking out of bed with her on board!

Thursday night Jeremy was home while I was running some secretive Easter errands. After a major tantrum he put Robyn to bed and said with the force and conviction that I obviously lacked that she better go to sleep and stay in bed! And she did. Friday, life was calm and relatively screaming/tantrum free again. She even took a nap for me! Life was so good. Our house was clean, I was able to run on the treadmill. I am sure this marks the end of happy nappy time every afternoon but I will continue to clean to the hope of happy nappy time and early bedtimes for as long as I can.

This week was full of the odds and end trivial activities that keep our lives busy. Monday I abandoned my massive piles of laundry and quickly worked through our grocery list (it had reached emergency status as I was informed by everyone in our family that a stick of butter was no substitute for a tub. Toast is just not the same unless you can spread it.) Then we enjoyed the glimpse of the sun and worked outside. We cleaned out the playhouse and got it all set up for the summer. Only Peter probably appreciates the effort of that sentence as he saw the effects of having a flock of birds and a bag of sunflower seed spend Christmas day in there. Then we shoveled copious amounts of dog poop so we could mow for the first time of the year. That only uncovered more copious amounts of dog poop that had been hidden in the jungle of our yard. Spencer was slacking this winter on the scoop patrol! Went out whenever the rain stopped this week to pull weeds but you really can't tell the difference yet. It hit me Sunday night as Robyn and I did a walk surveying the yard what work I needed to tackle. This time of the year it is always exciting to get outside but the task always seems a little overwhelming. Oh well, maybe I will revert to my mom's more "natural" gardening look. It always seems to look beautiful for her!

On a funny note with the poop patrol. Saturday I came home to find Jeremy vacuuming the whole house and kids diligently cleaning away. So nice! (Best part is that they were doing all that while I was using a christmas gift certificate for a massage!) But Spencer had done his jobs so he could play. Jeremy asked if he was sure he had scooped all the poop as he was going to check. Spencer quite arrogantly said he was sure. So Jeremy headed out with a shovel and his eagle eye with the agreement that Spencer would be doing 10 push-ups for every pile he found. First pile or two Spencer just shrugged and said "whatever, I can do 10, 20, 30 etc pushups" By pile 30!! Spencer was just almost crying that he would die trying to do that much. So Jeremy said he could do them over a week long period. So Spencer is cranking sets out morning and night and has promised to never miss a pile again.

Wednesday the kids all had early dentist appointments. The benefit of having older sibilings is that Robyn knows the drill and hops right up for x-rays and to have her teeth cleaned. The pink sparkley sunglasses that she gets to wear helps a lot too. Spencer had his retainer glues back in AGAIN. (I really wonder with him if the straight teeth is worth it. He seems to break his retainer every few weeks through diligent efforts on his part I am sure. He says he must do it in his sleep but...I caught him 'scratching' his retainer with a butter knife yesterday because he said it itched. Wonder how his retainer breaks?) Kids were all thrilled that they didn't have any cavities till we got to Allison. One of her teeth had come in without enamel on one spot. It had chipped off and a cavitity started that spread to part of the adjoining tooth. She is extremely nervous about getting those fixed in two weeks. They also discussed how before any more adult teeth try to come in she is going to have to have some baby teeth and adult teeth pulled. I just feel bad that so much of my defective genetic genes have been passed onto her! Glasses and now teeth! She is very freaked out about the idea of pulling teeth but we told her its a year away so worry about it then. Taylor is going to go in on the 30th to be put under with a general and have the rest of his baby teeth pulled and have his teeth really cleaned up, gums cut away etc. Sounds very painful but I am excited at the idea that history might repeat itself with the general anesthia as last time he went under he was seizure free for 6 months.

Friday night was movie night. Allison went with a friend and her mom to see Hannah Montana. Kids got paid this week and money was burning a hole in their pocket. I spent Wednesday evening driving Spencer around so he could buy a new game for his game boy. He found a used game store, that I am sure we will visit again with the next paycheck. So Spencer invited a friend to go to a movie and informed me he would need a driver! So after some talking about kids abusing me I got to go with Spencer and his friend to see Monsters vs Aliens feeling very cool in my 3-d glasses. Robyn in tears at her abandonment soon was all smiles with a kiddie cartoon, Jeremy and a plate of nachos. So all had their special time! Taylor was happy to have peace and quiet and a warm couch to lay on. The week of tantrums and constant noise was getting to him I think!

Saturday was a cleaning day. We cleaned the church at 8 am (that doesn't sound early till you have to get up for it!). Then took a candy break at the city easter egg hunt (rain, cold, hundreds of kids, thousands of eggs, 30 minutes wait and 3 minutes of locusts swarming the fields to pick up the eggs in a wild run across the field). Then with sugar high, smiling kids we cleaned the office. No matter where their life takes them, they can always fall back on their janitorial skills for a job!

Middle of this week we got hit with two big items of financial news for us. First we found out that we had WAY underpaid our pre-payment of taxes because we had put so much into our house that was non-business related. So stress and sadness about that. Then we found out that Jeremy needs to buy his truck this week but we also need to pick our van by this week. We hadn't really been thinking or looking at vans yet. So Thursday we spent the afternoon van shopping and looking online at options. Then Saturday for our date we did a repeat of the same. Narrowed it down to the Dodge Caravan or the Honda Odyssey. Personally I prefer the Odyssey but I am more into comfort than driving ability so we will see what we get. To make up for the car overload Saturday night we used our gift certificate to get fat and happy at the cheesecake factory. I have a new all time favorite there - Chris's crazy chocolate cake - brownie, cheesecake, cake, ganache, fudge, coconut frosting - all the good stuff. I have been nibbling on leftovers all day hiding my head behind the fridge door. Kids I am sure have been amazed at my good mood all day - the power of a good chocolate fix. While we were busy getting mega-calories our kids were too. Brave Meredith volunatarily (that crazy woman) took all of them to a wedding reception. Multiple slices of wedding cake later they came home to ask where's dessert?

Easter has been good. We re-learned that trying to take pictures of kids not in the mood REALLY doesn't work. But Jeremy got some very cute one after church when they were in the mood. I will have him post them. Kids all got new balls that they have been busy bouncing around, flip-flops and swimsuit paraphenalia. Robyn of course has been wearing her swimsuit most of the day. We dyed Easter eggs Friday afternoon and ate half of them already with our egg salad sandwiches for brunch. The one time of year we make those. Jason and family and Lauri came over for dinner and a big easter egg hunt afterwards. They color code the eggs for each kids so Spencer's eggs are always harder to find etc. We all had a great time. Lauri seems good although really tired and a little spacey. Not sure if meds are off or what but we will look into it.

On the personal front I have been mostly listening to an incessent Robyn this week. I did get my hair cut and the girls did as well. Allison and I have bobs to our shoulders. Robyn they turned into a pixie cut which when she lets me put some gel on the ends and flip it out looks really cute. I asked the hair stylist to see if she could make it look like her hair was done on purpose instead of a home hack job. Spencer is trying for the skater look again and doesn't believe us that wings for sideburns does not look cool when your hair is that thick.

I have been reading Wicked so I could understand the plot of the play. The book reminds me of a college english assigned reading and really is adult themed. Not sure if I would reccomend it. I am sure I missed half of the political satire if not more. They must have really rewritten the story to do the play. Will have to see it sometime.

This week is spring break so I am looking forward to lazy mornings with kids. Kids are planning play dates galore and lots of junk food and hanging out. We bought an air popcorn popper this week and have been rediscovering how good real popcorn is. Kids love to devour a bowl of it.

Love to you all, Heather