Monday, February 29, 2016

slow news is good news

a slow but good news week. 

i had a parent teacher conference with scarlett's teacher. it went so great. scarlett's adhd is always with her but her genuine intelligence is definitely coming to the forefront. there are still many struggles, like organization and handwriting, but she has a perfect science score, is an excellent storytelling skills, and an always improving math score. plus, i've never seen a child get so excited about an engineering class. it's so nice to have improvement. 

hersch likes pizza. what normal person doesn't? i'm back in the pizza making saddle again after a generous friend GAVE me her practically brand new one to replace my recently deceased machine. 

i didn't shower from thursday to saturday because of busyness. drama class, friday fun, exercising, cleaning, volleyball. not exactly news, but i really looked forward to putting an outfit together on sunday as a result. voila!  thrifted, gifted and clearance, all high quality. queen of frugal rides again. genuine levi jacket thrifted, silk liz claiborne dress thrifted, gifted from thomas anthropologie scarf, thrifted turquoise necklace, clearance HOLOGRAPHIC loafers. we should all own holographic shoes. if i HAVE to wear flats because of my continuing hip and back pain, they will not look sensible or practical!

have you ever been in church and you're minding your own business, wrestling your children, and you are called to bear your testimony? well, check that off the list for me. i think i passed. it must have been the holographic shoes.

thomas worked from home on monday which means he got nothing done, but he did have a chance to play with the kids. 

athena blythe was working it. she's too smart for her own good. we watched ET for friday fun and she was asking some pretty in depth alien questions for a three year old. but, she's too determined to do what she wants to heed any warning or potential reprimand. it's an ongoing issue. how do you help a child learn discipline without breaking their spirit? the world may never know. i certainly don't know. plus, i'm always laughing at her antics, so that certainly doesn't help. 

lawyers always bring the party to the outdoor party.

Monday, February 22, 2016

love in the time of viral infections

a two week recap

scarlett was first in the viral infection death spiral. it started as soon as we got home from knoxville and lasted a week! she went to school on wednesday after missing monday and tuesday and then woke up the next morning on thursday with a rash covering her whole body.

 glamour shots rash, look closely:
i took her to the doctor and he said it was a highly contagious viral infection that she just had to ride out. hurray. herschel also had his 1 year appointment that day and he is a whopping 18.5 lbs and in the 3% on weight, 5% for length and 48% for head circumference. still a little guy.

on the single day that scarlett felt well enough, we made valentine's for all three kid's classes. it was forced homemadeness because everyone wanted specific ones that i could not deliver on because i waited until the week of to purchase. i'm trying to walk that fine line of accommodating wants and not sending my kids to school with valentines that embarrass them. unfortunately, the finished product of the homemade valentines was a little embarrassing. cutting a straight line with scissors is hard for me. 
henry ford is a genius and everyone seemed to enjoy the assembly line process. 

reagan made himself this valentine from me because he really wanted the bag of m&ms stapled to the back. reagan insisted that we staple candy to the back. i recall that being the really cool thing to do so i complied. plus, i think regular size m&ms are alright, but those mini m&ms really hit the spot!
unfortunately, scarlett was still sick on friday and had to miss her valentine party at school. unfortunately for me, i'm still room rep for her class and hardly any parents signed up on my classroom genius signup, in which i gave ample warning and instruction and donation options, so am reconfirming my stance that i am NEVER going to be a room rep again. i'll help, i won't orchestrate. i scrambled to pull together the remaining valentine party needs myself. go me. (please, no comments on what i should REALLY try to do to encourage parent participation, because i really don't want to hear it. i'm done.)

i had some big plans for our valentines as a family, but with a sick kid, it came down to a candy bouquet and pink waffles. thomas got everyone valentine cards. 

thomas and i did go out together on saturday night to celebrate our burning love for each other. we went to the gym(i rocked my sprints and deadlifts) and then we went out to dinner. we had previously discussed possibly showering at the gym and going to eat very casually in clean workout wear in consideration of time constraints because my massive mane takes forever to dry and style. we never confirmed our plans because we are busy people dealing with many interruptions. as we're packing our gym bags, i ask, "are you wearing sweats?" to which thomas replied, "yes". because that's what people wear to the gym. it wasn't until we were walking into the gym and thomas was carrying a man date outfit on a hanger that i realized that he and i had planned outfits for very different dates. i'm so embarrassed. he looked wonderful and i was wearing my favorite alabama sweatpants and an old sweatshirt. i did bring makeup but my hair broke the gym's blowdryer(not a first) and i had pretty wet hair, but good makeup because i've been practicing. i felt infinitely bad and people probably figured that thomas was taking some poor schmoe on a pity date. the pizza was good, the alfredo was not, and the rugby on the tv at the place we were eating was interesting. 

the next week started out uneventfully, we even had a break in all the cold weather and rain and i said, "darn the homework, trampoline full speed ahead!"

our tramp is well loved and in need of a new heavy duty safety net.

unfortunately, we were still incubating illness and the next day  athena blythe came down with the viral infection.

 and then hersch got wind of it!

so sick that she mostly just held this brownie.

 and by friday, reagan had gotten it too! 

saturday, we found an dauntless babysitter who braved our children for a few hours while thomas and i continued the house search. some good ones. some terrible ones. possibly the one or two, but still a bit of time to look and evaluate. 

this one was listed as "pristine condition".  if they meant, "like a museum documenting 80s houses" then, yes. 

scarlett and thomas went to the daddy daughter dance at her elementary school. 
 they ate dinner with some friends from church, then danced a bit, brought refills of medication for the sick kids to me, and then went to the dollar theater to see star wars: the force awakens. again. needless to say, scarlett had me do "rey" hair for church on sunday to mimic her cinematic idol's hairstyle.

 by sunday, everyone was still down and thomas and i traded off church attendance.  i went to sacrament meeting with scarlett and it was the best meeting i have been to since the last time the bulk of my children missed church! the topic was conversion and one of the speakers quoted a talk elder holland gave in 2001. it's pertaining to missionary work, but i was really struck by how it's about everything. everything is hard but the Savior has experienced it all and we often have to have our own taste of Gethsemane to measure our conversion. 

"i want some pistol light!"
the end

Friday, February 12, 2016

hersch's first revolution around the sun

it's not only hard to fathom that herschel has been with us for 1 year, it's hard to fathom that he's with us at all. his unexpectedness is still surprising to me. i find myself pausing and saying, "i have four children!", like it's a new revelation. it blows my mind. or i look around the car and count four heads and i think, "i guess that's right! 4 kids!" other times it's like he's always been with us. when athena blythe was a tiny baby, i was over the moon in love with her. i had bonded with her quickly and i had repeated feelings of wanting another baby. but that's crazy talk! i had a baby right in front of me! but the feelings persisted. i recall several times while i was running early on saturday mornings with no one else is the world awake, that i was not alone. that someone was running with me, but not in the creepy, scary way. sometimes i would have conversations in my head with this person. after a while, life got busier and things with thomas's job got more and more unexpected and i stopped having those feelings. plus, i was ridiculously busy with three kids! of course i wasn't pining for one. then we decided to move to atlanta to pursue more stable prospects and i discovered that i was great with child. the timing was terrible. i never thought about having more children at that point. it was nearly devastating news to me. i felt reluctant and unhinged. how could i move my children, reestablish myself in a new area with a special needs child, deal with thomas being out of town almost constantly and be pregnant! i've not had a more trying time in my life. yuck! no thanks!  when will my trial be great wealth? but everything worked. i was sick almost constantly. the kids had no after school activities because i simply couldn't handle it and when i finally thought i was coming out of my fog, i got extra sick and herschel was born. it was worth it. i feel lucky enough to have experienced it. blessings abounded while i was pregnant, blessings abounded after hersch was born. i still haven't been to hawaii but i have seen the Spirit of the Lord completely entrenched in my life so i guess that's a pretty good trade off. hersch is a dream. a surprise that i guess i knew about all along. i feel like hersch was with me on all those early morning runs, waiting for me to slow down and be ready for him. 

hersch's new carseat that athena blythe had to break in. 

and the inevitable box adoration.

boogers and wrinkles at the park.

i was getting tired of taking pictures but herschel was insisting!

the kid fits right in around here.

for hersch's birthday i made this dump truck cake and we watched ghostbusters. because i can't handle any more animated talking animals. 

i was hoping for a more fudgy frosting but my proportions were off and so it was more powdered sugary and frothy than i like. 

no one can resist dancing to the ghostbusters theme song. try it. you can't. you're singing it now! dena dena dena de nanana.
we almost delved into a birds and the bees type conversation when scarlett and reagan were questioning why louis tully was the keymaster and dana barrett was the gatekeeper. i think i'll keep this movie on hand when we delve deeper into the logistics  and anatomical parts of the coming of age family conversations. 

poor 4th child had to deal with christmas wrapping paper. 

i think hersch was also hoping for better fudgy frosting because he just wasn't that interested in this sugary mess.

in other news, scarlett and athena blythe have darling coordinated, matchy but not matchy, bedspreads for their shared room. they are both in plastic bags in the linen closets because they both prefer other blankets. scarlett likes a flannel byu blanket and athena blythe likes an oooold bedspread that i used in college. athena blythe also prefers to sleep on the floor like a dog. i often say, "goodnight, puppy." and scratch her head goodnight. i'm raising a couple of bohemian hippies. 

we also took a less than 24 hours trip to knoxville, tennessee on sunday night to see our cousin, caroline, get baptized. the hotel was as fun as you can imagine with these three dum dums in a bed. i finally had to pull athena blythe into bed with thomas and me because she was being so ridiculously obnoxious (imagine that). 

caroline was baptized in a contemporary baptist church. it was a great learning experience because i have so few sabbath day experiences with other churches. lots of similarities. biggest similarity was athena blythe's fantastic behavior. at one point i was carrying her down the hall on my shoulders. good times.

the best friends. where you find one, you can find the other. like when athena blythe was letting herschel out the front door with such a glow of satisfaction on her face when it was "snowing" and only 25 degrees. 
the end. we love herschel. God is right. we usually are not. but He keeps giving us more chances.