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Sunday, October 25, 2015

October - what happened?

I realized that my free time lately has been spent snoozing and I haven't updated the blog for almost the whole month!  Sleep is a high priority in our household.

October has been filled with the business of school and work.  Allison got to do a day of service at her school making mosaic tile decorations and our family got to do a ward day of service pulling out bushes and gardens.  Spencer thought it was awesome to use a truck to yank a tough bush out of the ground.  We made our annual Halloween cookies, gave some out and gobbled up the rest.

Jeremy got a new phone to replace his very, very old one and has been enjoying trying out all the new video and photo capabilities.  Good thing he has some willing subjects around.

Then we had fall break.  Jeremy stayed behind to work as he and Spencer had a man trip planned the following weekend.  I checked kids out of school early and we headed off to Denver to play with cousins.  Taylor stayed behind in respite for the long weekend.  He seems to prefer hanging out with a beanbag and cuddling rather than driving and playing. 

We had a wonderful time playing with cousins and visiting with Daniel and Mimi.  I wish we could have stayed there longer and no one was eager to come home Monday. 

We played bowling and pool:

We went to a park and saw a great production of Charlotte's Web and then went swimming:

We got to cheer at Sammy's soccer game:

And went to a pumpkin festival where the hits were milking a cow and a 3-legged race:

We even had a cousin spa that Claire set up for everyone:

It was wonderful to visit, play and catch up.  And photo evidence to the contrary, Spencer was there and had a great time...with a few teenage moment thrown in there.  One night Daniel took Spencer, Allison and me to a haunted house.  The kids thought it was awesome and were waiting to see how I would sprint away from the chainsaw guys.  I did not sprint but I did walk very fast!  The things we do for our kids!

While we were gone Jeremy worked, did a bunch of photo work and enjoyed an empty house for a few days.  We got back late Monday.  I made the kids hit the grocery store on the way home which was probably a little over the top.  And we dived back into school and work.  Spencer had a quick turn around as he left Thursday after school for his man trip with Jeremy and the guys in my family in Truckee.  They had a great time and I am sure have photos to share next week.  With them gone I was excited to have some down time to work on errands, homework, garden and house stuff.  We did manage to go up to the zoo Saturday morning for their boo at the zoo which was very fun.

Both girls had birthday parties this weekend and Allison had a babysitting job, Robyn a primary program rehearsal and Allison went to her first dance.  With them so busy I got lots of my to do list done which is always nice.  Who knew I would get so excited to have the opportunity to mow the lawn and clean bathrooms!

Monday Allison turned 14.  She chose to have chunky monkey pancakes in bed and have two friends come over after school to watch a movie and have caramel popcorn and then have lasagna with our family.  Around here we are all about the food!  Hard to believe she is that old.  I will take all the snarky 14ish traits if I can get all her awesome 14 year oldness is return.

For her birthday we gave her tickets to go see Idina Menzel in concert on Thursday night.  Jeremy was working that night.  So I ran home after an exam, fed kids, dropped Taylor off at special needs mutual and we drove to to UVU.  I have learned my lesson accompanied by many long suffering sighs as although we arrived at UVU at 7:20 for a 7:30 concert, parking and standing in the will call line took us until 8!  Luckily we just missed the warm up acts and had a fun time together after.  I need to teach Allison to live it up more as she started getting concerned at 9 how much longer the concert would go as she had school the next day.  We heard some amazing music and got some new favorite Broadway songs.

With General Conference weekend the girls and I planned a girls night out for Saturday while the boys did Priesthood session.  We went to see West Side Story as Allison needed to attend a play this semester for drama class.  Robyn was quite aghast that people died in the play, "This breaks every rule about Happily Ever After!".

The rest of the weekend was spent enjoying listening to conference talks, eating yummy food and visiting with Jason and Kelly and their kids Sunday afternoon.  And of course the requisite Sunday in between session walk to stretch our legs:

On Saturday Spencer had to work 10-4, I had to fit in grocery shopping and mowing the lawn, Jeremy had work and took Allison for her promised birthday lunch to Chinese Gourmet and we all needed to clean the office.  The day seemed to fly by!  Spencer drove in at 4:10 and met us in the garage to go clean the office just astounded that he wasn't done working yet!  Jeremy told him, welcome to reality.
Allison learned she does not like mussels:

Spencer had a tough start to the week.  He was very nervous and stressed about trying out for club volleyball.  He had Jeremy drive with him there and Spencer parked onto the curb and ripped the bumper off the convertible.  It ended up being a fairly easy and inexpensive repair but he got to enjoy duct taping it up to make it home.  And then at club volleyball he was hitting nothing but net and got cut.  He was just heartbroken and down in the dumps for a day or two.  It reminded me that Spencer handles stress if his life is ordered and he knows what is coming.  Unexpected deviations to his plan just throws him off.  He does so well most days that I almost forget that he is bi-polar.

You fit in work, school and kid stuff and the week is done.  Take what comes and love it as President Wirthlin said.  Robyn really enjoys her turn at cleaning the bathroom: