Around Here Thirty Seven & Eight: 09/09-09/22

Sunday, September 24, 2017

A glimpse into what it is like to live in our home just this minute.

Intentional Outdoor Hours: 466+ hours (of 1000)
Only up 16 hours in two weeks which isn't anything to write home about, bummer. The weather has been beautiful though and we've snagged some outdoor hours at football practice and games. I got in a walk or two with the pups and we had a family outside work day when we prepped the landscaping for the fall.  We bought new beautiful mums for the season and got our bushes all trimmed up for the last time this year. The leaves are starting to change too and the view atop our mountain is breathtaking.

Reading The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (again) to get a quick reminder for my local book club. I'm still struggling with managing all my normal stuff with our new schedule so it's not been great on the reading for fun category. We had our monthly Books & Brews book club meeting at Press Bistro and it was such a little slice of Heaven on a Monday night.  Great food, great chatting, giggling, and a real moment of soul recharging (xxox!) We picked our next months book The Tenth of December by George Saunders and while I wait for it to arrive, I happily dipped back into Anne Lamot's Bird by Bird.

Footballin' as the season is in full swing. Grey had his first two games already and played with his short cast and all. I warned him that if it even looked like he was being too rough with his arm, his momma was going to come out on the field and drag him off! hhhahha. He did great though and QB'ed short cast and all. They've won both ! The two practices a week are the perfect addition to keep Grey focused on trying his best in school (if he's not doing well in school - no football) and to get his energy out too. The girls love going to practice too as they get to play with all their friends who are football player siblings too!

Thanking first responders to honor 9/11.  My students and I created cards in class to give to our school's resource officer (and retired state policeman) and then later that evening, we all went over to deliver cookies and a thank you card to our favorite first responder and neighbor Mike who is a retired state policeman and our kids' resource officer at their school.  Mike was actually a first responder to the Flight 93 crash and we got to hear a little bit about his experience and see photos from his time helping out there.

Discovering Rusty has another double ear infection with almost no signs; he is a tough little man! He had some teeth coming in and was cranky because of that, but since he didn't show any signs last time, I took him as a just-in-case to the Peds and yep, double ear infection. He was smiling and being flirty the whole time with the RN and she said, "geez, this little guy has got a high pain tolerance!" He got three new teeth this week though and now on his antibiotic, he's feeling much better. Still crazy (changing his diaper is like trying to wrestle an actual crocodile).

Taking our spin on the ole sinus infection wheel of fun. We all had stuffy heads and noses which is such a bummer but also a standard back-to-school routine, so whatevs.

Opening an etsy shop for Greyson as he's still in fly-tying mode. He was so excited to put some of his flies together and gave them all names and collection names. It was a lot of fun to see him so excited about something that didn't involve tackling, jumping, or throwing a ball for a few minutes. Bless the sweetest #huntingdad we know Wade James (of Adliv Collective) who went and sold Grey's shop out within minutes.  I told Grey he had a notification in the store that he sold his flies and he fake-passed out on the couch with the hugest smile on his face.  He got them all packaged and was so proud to mail them out - only to be even more proud when Wade posted a video of him fishing with the flies and saying the fish were hitting them hard and they were a great product (seriously, Wade, you are so kind and fueled our boy's passion!) Booboo has been busy trying to restock his shop (and making lots of flies for free to hand out to his family and friends - hahha, worst salesman, just like his momma).

Working with Gemmi Ro with her letters and sounds.  She is still well behind her classmates as I expected would happen because she struggles with recalling names in general.  We are so very grateful for her teacher, Mrs. Roman (hi!) as she has so much patience and encouragement for our girl despite her struggles. I've been reading up on Dyslexia a little bit and pieces of it really sound like Gem (seeing the whole, big picture but not the individual parts; difficulty rhyming, difficulty recalling names/words, being more 'right-brained').  I know some of my readers have some personal experience with this and this is me reaching out on any thoughts/insight.  I'd love for this to be the thing and then we can start working towards a path to coping with it - is there an official screening? am I just reaching here and being over label-y? I know we are both frustrated though, she looked up at me during rhyming homework words the other day and half whimpered, "momma, this is just so hard for me" and I gave her a hug and said that I could see that but I was so proud of how hard she tries.  ugh, raising babies is so tough on the heart.

Watching Jurassic World on repeat. Our fam is obsessed with dinosaurs eating people. LOL. We like dinosaurs in the general sense but we love the Jurassic park movies and our children got their grubby little hands on the remote the past few days and have been renting it straight from directTV at $5+ a pop every few days when the rental wears out.  Finally the old people in the house (B and I) figured out they were renting it every time and had to put a stop to it (Luckily for us - SpikeTV is running a huge Jurassic Park marathon this weekend and we just DVRed the first three movies.  Grey has been drawing dinosaurs and Violet thinks any weird noise at night is probably 'a vawsaraptor'

Planning (super last minute) for our Vially three year old biggie girl's birthday party! I looked at the calendar this week and my mouth dropped to the floor when I realized I had less than a week until our girl was going to be three! I texted out an invite (even forgot to send it to some VIP guests! ahem, Gigi, sorry I love you, haha) and was so overwhelmed with love as the generous floodgates opened and many texted back with offers to bring something to the party. #ihavethebestpeople We feel like it's sort of weird that Vially is going to be three (because wait, isn't she like four with that huge vocabulary and incredible genius girl brain?) but also so so grateful and happy to celebrate her. She is such a gift to our family and so often the most easy going and pleasant person in this house.  And her little voice, I die every time I hear her.  Nearly everyone who meets our kids say "aww they are all so cute, but that Violet!" or also "I might try to steal that Violet!" She is our beautiful, hilarious, sweet, kind, wise, squishy, lovable ball of joy. Oh Vially, we could eat you up like a little meatball baby, we love you so.

Surviving.  It's been a doozy of two weeks and we held on to the handles while this tilt-a-whirl life spun on the speed cycle. I was able to throw loads of laundry between the washer and dryer luckily all week, but they sat in the hampers clean until finally Friday night. I went through the house; folded all the clothes, emptied all the backpacks, cleaned the bathrooms and ran the sweeper. Paying bills, grading papers, and finishing next week lesson plans all still on the docket. I opened my planner to have my speeding ticket from last week, unpaid, fall out and I was had quite a startle to realize another few days and I would have had a warrant out for my arrest simply because I've been #momingtoohard to pay the bills.  sheesh.  Get it together, WOMAN! Family and friends - thank you so much for your patience, and support through this temporary lapse of sanity (LOL) - my standard 24 hour text response time has been bumped up to about minimum 72 hour response time (if any response at all, #ihatemetoo). I'm too lucky to have you as loved ones - i know this.

Starting to thrive though. By the end of these past two weeks, I just decided that I was going to do right by our kiddos first and then by B and then by everything else.  chores be darned, I took a more relaxed tone in the lesson planning (still serious learning, but with brake-pump on the urgency) and everything started to feel better.  The benefit of everyone in school or daycare during the days has been that the house isn't getting completely wrecked every day of the week, laundry piles up and meals are a little more thrown together - but our weekends have been tag-teaming the bigger chores (changing sheets, vacuuming, massive folding and putting away clothes) and it's been manageable. It feels like (as always in life) if I can just release my death grip on control a teeny bit, everything is easier and more joyful.  When will I learn!?

Making spaghetti, hawaiian meatballs, Italian chicken in the crockpot, frozen pizzas, and dinners supplied by each set of grandparents (thank you!)  I whipped up a batch of (boxed) blueberry muffins for breakfast and Gem was so happy to deliver some to our awesome bus driver Rob that morning.


  1. Vially's eyes in that picture! She's so dang precious!

    Bird by Bird is so good. Every page has such insight!

    Cracking up about your croc wresting with little R. :) Hahaha!

    Your priorities seem spot on (first kids, then B, then everyone else! I love this!) and I am hoping for you that things continue to iron themselves out as you all adjust and that then you can feel like life is a little more manageable. I can sure relate to feeling like every plate is in the air and I'm kinda just hanging out, waiting to see which one falls to the ground! #lifewithfourkids

    That said, the one thing that has worked for us this last year is having house cleaning day on Sunday when everyone is home to pitch in. It's such a good feeling to work together and have the house clean at the start of the week. (My kids may disagree about cleaning house on the weekend feeling good. Hah!)

    Sending you so much love (and awe!) as you navigate working. You're AMAZING!