Daily Life

Summer “Camp” and County Fairs

This summer has been busy. And weird. I don’t need to explain that part. Everyone’s summer is weird this year.

On Sunday I took my kids to my parents’ house. It is kind of an annual tradition that they spend a week there every summer. I am sure it wears my parents out but they get to know their grandchildren better. We only live a couple hours away but we only see eachother a couple times a year. It would be nice to live closer but it is what it is. Maybe we’ll move someday.

While the kids have been having summer camp at the grandparents- swimming, doing crafts and playing with cousins- Evangeline (who is too young to go away for that long) and I have been keeping busy. The morning after the kids had gone I looked at the house and saw what a disaster it was. Such a big disaster. I’ve been chipping away at the mess for hours each day and I am almost done with the laundry. Hahaha. But the silver lining is that the vacuum lines stayed on the carpet for a couple days. That has never happened.

The day before I dropped the kids off we all gathered our projects and took them to the county fair. As I mentioned before, the house was a disaster and Gideon couldn’t find his painting. He grabbed a piece of paper and on the way drew a picture and we turned that in. It was pretty good. Alex and I have spent the last three nights going over to the fair and checking out all the entries. It is a small county fair and everyone gets a ribbon. It is so fun to see all the projects and art. This year was the second time that I had entered anything in and it was a good year. But what Alex and I are pretty proud of is our cabbages.

This year we planted a lot of cabbages. Two rows because we eat a lot of cabbage. It is so good! This year a few of our cabbages took off. They were giant. (We think the chicken poop fertilizer did the trick.) I measured the vegetables and we had three that were 28 inches around. We needed to turn in two

The ones on the right are your regular size cabbage. Good stuff. I just thought I’d show the comparison. A big one feeds my family for two or three meals.

I am just a bit excited because we won the grand prize!

I was really excited for the kids, too. They all won ribbons and Michael placed second in his category and Lauren got first in hers.

It has been a fun experience and I think the kids will probably put more effort and time into more projects this coming year for the next fair since there are no limits to how many entries one can do.

This morning before wrote this I realize that school is on the horizon and I am not ready! All my Arizona friends started this week online and it made me realize I need to get with it.

But I’ll leave that for another day. It is still summer here and I want to enjoy it.

Daily Life, Remodel

Things are Starting

The last few days I got serious about the house project. All the papers were done and appraisal was good and done so there is only waiting for the bank’s process to get finished.

Since it was inevitable I got a move on and started taking stuff from the upstairs kitchen to the basement kitchenette. Let me tell you, it won’t all fit. When cooking is a big part of my job (as a parent) and baking is a hobby I tend to collect a lot of tools.

Yesterday Alex moved the basement oven up to the garage and the upstairs oven to the basement. The oven we took to the garage was a “vintage” oven from the 70’s. The oven stopped working and finding parts for it is detective work I don’t think is worth it to me. I’ll sell it to someone who wouldn’t mind the work.

When I went to plug the oven in to make rice krispie treats the kids have been begging for I realized that the oven plug didn’t match the outlet. Great. First thing this morning I got the tools out and looked up how to switch the plugs on YouTube. I got it figured out and did it! The stove works!

I also weeded the front flower garden. I needed to fertilize it and I wasn’t about to fertilize the weeds. That is the last thing I need is more weeds. This spring when my tulips came up they were pretty but I didn’t like how they were planted so I dug all the bulbs up this morning so I can replant them this fall in a different arrangement.

Then it was back to the house project. I think moving would be less work. I made lots of trips up and down the stairs and had to find a new home for all the stuff. Alex came home and he was so good and got right to work pulling the cabinets off the upstairs kitchen wall and putting them in the basement kitchen. I was wondering where I was going to put all the stuff because there weren’t any upper cabinets in the basement. Alex saved the day and we reused the old stuff.

I did take a break in the middle of the day. Gideon and Sam had coupons for free sundaes from McDonald’s and we finally went and used them. I needed a few things for the “new” kitchen anyways so we made a quick trip for ice cream cones. It was a fun time with the kids. On the way home Michael and Benjamin spent the entire ride home trying to figure out the chemical sign meant that was on the outside of Walmart. It made me laugh how much they wanted to know and how they went about searching for it on the phone.

I need to finish the kitchen and fridge tomorrow and hopefully move on to the laundry room and bathroom. And I need to see about getting a permit. That is an ordeal I will write about tomorrow. For now I am exhausted and need to get to sleep.

Daily Life

I’m Still Here

So I’ve been MIA for a while. My fun holiday weekend wasn’t all that fun. The appraisers called and where I figured I’d have another week to accomplish my tasks I had the weekend. It was good that it was a long one so Alex and I could both work on the projects and cleaning but that means we didn’t get to have fun. We did finish all the projects on our list though, so yay for that. But that is what procrastination gets you- not enough time to do what you should have done earlier.

The kids were helpful here and there. My 11 year old daughter wanted to help with projects so much. I gave in and let her help me mud and texture a ceiling and she was better at it that my son who was helping. I let her paint some of it too. They all helped clean up the house and yard, as they should and the appraisal hopefully went well.

We did do some fun stuff over the weekend. We had a cookout and ate in the backyard. The kids went swimming even though the water was cold due to the cool week we had last week. I did not participate. I don’t do cold.

Benjamin had shown signs of growing up; he helped around the house without being told. I love when it finally clicks for them. Alex decided to reward him so we took him out to eat and had the chance to talk to him.

Then we went to the local firework stand and spent way too much for what we got. The fireworks were a disappointment. Big time. Evangeline wasn’t scared of them and clapped at every one. We didn’t go see any fireworks show but a lot of the people around town had bought some big ones and we went to the high school football field and watched them go off all over town. It was fun and the kids declared it was the best day ever. I’m glad we’ve set the bar so low. The moon was really full and big and bright which did add to the beauty of the night. The dog hated them all and hid under a bed.

On Sunday we got up early and went to my parents house. My whole family was there and it was so much fun. I wish it wasn’t a five hour drive round trip but it is what it is. We visited and the kids played with their cousins. We are making plans for the kids to stay for a week (or a few days) at Gramma and Grampa’s house. It will be a fun break for all of us. Well, maybe. It will wear out my parents. I’d keep the baby with me though.

Monday morning I got up and had to finish cleaning for the appraisal. I was up at 5:30 because it started at 9:00. Dishes, sweeping, vacuuming, decluttering, etc. I went to the basement when there was fifteen minutes left only to find the two teenagers asleep in their dirty smelly room. I had had the kids sleep outside in the tent so I could make their beds and nor have them in the way but the big boys dis what they want. Fine. I told them to jump up and help me. I went around shoving things. Pile of wet clothes in a couple rooms? Thrown into the washer. Pile of mattress pads and sheets? Thrown in the dryer to jus TV get it out of the way. Then as I was sweeping the basement floor there was a knock on the door. I threw the broom at the boys and told them to finish.

I think it went okay. I got a cleaner house out of the deal and a bunch of needed projects done. Now I can start tearing it all apart. Sheesh. I think I am going to recruit my son’s friends for demo. I figure it could be fun for them and I’ll give them a pizza party at the end. It is a proven fact that teenagers do almost anything for food.

I spent a good chunk of Tuesday researching contractors and subcontractors. I think I’ve decided that I am going to be the general contractor for this and I’ll hire and schedule the subs. It could save me money but could be a pain. I’ll find out. I need to call the window guy and see when those are going to be installed.

Two of Alex’s sisters are here for a couple days so that should be fun for the kids. Elizabeth was so excited because she gets to have her nails painted by her aunt. Fun stuff for a five year old.

It should be another busy day. I’ll get to it and let you do the same.

Daily Life

Plans on Hold

Yesterday morning I was prepping to go camping for the weekend. Yesterday afternoon I got a call that the house appraiser was coming Monday morning.

Plot twist.

Okay, it was all good. Just a slight panic because I was excited to just get away from everything and have fun with my kids. I thought we’d have another week at least to prepare for the appraisal. Nope. Just a long weekend. I changed gears and got to work. I cleaned the boys bathroom (it was so gross and I don’t know why they think it is acceptable) and then I cleaned the little boys bedroom. I moved furniture around because that’s what I do.

The big boys said they cleaned their room. They clearly don’t know the meaning of the word clean. I took everything out of their closet. Random piles of paper and art supplies and just stuff. I took some of it and told them to put away the rest. What do you bet they just shoved it back into the closet willy-nilly?

I moved tables and wardrobes and exercise equipment, beds and piles and piles of laundry. Actually I made the piles and had everyone help. I vacuumed and vacuumed and dusted and then I was pooped. Only to have to get up and start in again.

I planned on painting the stairs this morning but instead I am writing. I don’t want to paint them. They need it but I just would rather fix them right but don’t have the time or materials for it yet.

And the camping trip? We are still having it. In the backyard. Because why not.

Quick funny story. Last night I was tucking the little boys in. They are in the basement and out of the corner of my eye I saw a shadow move in the window. I calmed myself thinking it was just our cat, but realized it was huge! A ginormous black head was in the window looking at me. My neighbor’s great dane had gotten out and was looking at me. I was startled but figured out what was going on. I went to put her back in her yard because I knew the neighbors had gone camping. I don’t know how she got out. The fence gates were all zip tied and blocked. It is a mystery. But having a huge black animal blend into the night staring at you through the window is a little disconcerting.

Okay, fine, I’ll get to work. It is going to be a very long day.

Daily Life, Sunday

Start the Week

Sunday was a good day. Very slow. Rainy.

For the kids singing time at our home church I asked them each what song they would like to sing. Noah said the sun song. I don’t know what that is so he picked another one. Elizabeth said she wanted the raspberry song. Again, I don’t know what that is. Turns out they were going by what they thought the picture was on the songbook page. No raspberries. I told her to go through the book and find it. She came across a page with palm leaves on it. I told her the song was called Hosana. Oh, she said then proceeded to sing, “Hosana ooh na-na.” Um no. That is not how the song in the book goes. I got a chortle out of that and corrected her. The other song says Havana, not Hosana. Hopefully we cleared that up.

Around dinner time I didn’t want to cook. The kids said they wanted donuts. I said if they made them then they could have donuts for dinner. Everyone ran upstairs as fast as they could. I believe they all helped Alex and only one bowl was broken. I found remnants when I cleaned on Monday.

Benjamin wanted to make the frosting/ glaze for the donuts. I told him butter and sugar milk and vanilla. I didn’t specify powdered sugar because I thought it was obvious. It wasn’t to him and the regular sugar didn’t work. After the failed batch he asked what kind of sugar to use. The second batch was good. Alex said he saw him using the wrong sugar but figured it was an easy lesson for Benjamin. Benjamin asked why Alex didn’t stop him. I asked if he would make that mistake again. He said no. Okay, lesson learned. And the donuts were good.

Monday wore me out. With the appraisal looming over my head I need the whole house decluttered and cleaned. I cleaned the whole day. Bedrooms dusted, vacuumed. Bathrooms cleaned. Laundry room cleaned. Laundry washed and put away. Front room cleaned. All the upstairs vacuumed and mopped. The basement cleaned. All the dishes found scattered throughout the house washed. All that’s left is the kids bedrooms and the garage. And the basement bathroom. I don’t want to do that one, it is gross – five boys use it. But I’ll do it anyways. If I could I would ban my kids from the house. I’d set a tent up in the backyard and have them camp out there for an extended period of time to save the house. I won’t but it is a nice thought.

Once the cleaning is “done” (is it ever done?) I need to mud and texture the girls’ bedroom ceiling then paint it and the walls. I haven’t moved the little girls into the room yet because I want to get that done first so I am not dodging furniture when I mud. It is just easier that way.

Last night Alex should have been mudding the drywall on the new closet he build but he spent hours finalizing drafting of the renovation plans. He loves drafting. We made sure the measurements were correct and moved a couple things that we’d wanted to change, added a few more lights, etc. The good thing about being able to redo a house is that we’ve lived here for eight years and know how we’d make the space work better. A good thing about taking our time is we’ve been able to think and rethink what we thought we wanted and try and improve it. Things that have bugged us we can change. Things that we have always wanted we can add. I am looking forward to ripping the whole thing out but not necessarily putting it back together. It will be worth it. I hope.

Alex did stop working on it long enough to join us for scriptures and prayer. It was fun because the story we were on is an exciting one and Michael was practically on the edge of his seat. He loved it and said, “Ammon is awesome!” I have to agree.

Well, I need to start the day. It is the last day of June. I’ve got lots to do including fortifying myself for July because if it follows the first half of the year we need all the help we can get. Can we just pretend that 2020 is over? Just me?

Daily Life

Finally Feels Like Summer

I got a lot done today. A lot of cleaning and laundry and decluttering. Granted a lot of the clutter left the house only to make it to the garage. I’ll get to it eventually. I always do. I got the lawn watered and the last of the flowers planted.

I did not want to exercise this morning. I’d slept in -not on purpose- and felt like I would not get the day accomplished if I took time out to exercise.

Excuses.

I exercised anyways.

And I got so much done. I’m glad I didn’t give in to the excuses.

In working so hard all day by the time four o’clock came around I decided to take a timeout. I sat and watched Noah ride his bike everywhere. Then I decided to join him. I grabbed my scooter and Noah and I rode around the block. Skylar came with us which was a good thing because she needed a run. I enjoyed the time with Noah. He’s a tough kid. He crashed his bike twice, got up, dusted himself off and got back on his bike and kept riding. He did stop once to see if his knee was bleeding. It wasn’t.

Later, after dinner, Alex suggested we go play basketball. I ran with the idea and calmed all the kids and we went to the park. We jumped rope, played on the playground set and played basketball. Evangeline had never seen such a thing. She was running all over with a big smile on her face giggling and clapping the whole time. She loved it. Lauren was shy at first and said she didn’t know how to play. I told her to just get in there and she managed to make a basket on her first try.

Afterwards we were all hot and sweating. The kids all ran home to get into the pool to cool off. I’l never understand why they all have to shout and scream when they are all literally the feet from each other.

It was a good day. It finally feels like summer. We (I) got a lot done and I got to play with my kids. At the end of the day Alex found me sitting in a chair by the raspberry bushes. I was watching all the honey bees busily flying from flower to flower in the setting sun. It might seem a little bit of a crazy thing to do but after a long and full day it was nice to just sit and mindlessly watch the bees.

I’ll leave you tonight with a picture of Luna. She was sleeping so funny that I had to take a picture.

Daily Life

Lightning Storms on Warm Summer Days

You know summer is here when there are pop-up thunderstorms seemingly every afternoon. Today was one such day. It was nice and sunny and warm then bam! A big long thunderstorm. I loved it. I spent the whole of it listening to the rain, wind, and thunder while I read a new book I bought with some Amazon credits I had- Moonlight and Mistletoe. It was a fairly quick read and I loved it. Perfect conditions.

I did actually get stuff done and the kids actually did, too. I have their chores set up and they have to do them before they can play. And I have to enforce it usually but they all just up and did it. The little ones even weeded their garden row! I was shocked. It was good though because I had time to tackle the other jobs I needed to get done. I mopped the living room, entry, dining room and kitchen. Three times. It needed it. Can’t clean with dirty water. There has been a lot of dust lately with the road work in front of my house. I also got the laundry room tackled. Well, most of it. I still have a long ways to go. It has been a dumping ground and holding area for stuff I don’t know what to do with. I am so excited to rearrange it and make it more efficient. The layout right now is not conducive to enormous amounts of laundry. Alex said I should just start tearing the stuff out in preparation. Um, no. If we have to have an appraiser come then the house torn up will not bode well for the worth of the house. So, I will just bide my time.

I spent a fair bit of time with Noah. Mostly trying to distract him. He clearly needs lots of outdoor time and running around. He was pestering me during the rainstorm. I played with him and Evangeline for a bit. Just being silly. They are pretty funny kids. Eventually I hit on an idea of something they could go do and Evangeline, who is just a tiny little 18 month old, grabbed her big brother’s hand and pulled him towards the basement. It was so cute! Later that night she played hide and seek with Alex and I when she was supposed to be going to bed. She would hide in the closet and peek her head out and give us the biggest smile while she was laughing.  The other day at the store Alex was holding her and tickled her belly and she was shrieking/laughing. It was funny but it was so loud! I am sure everyone all the way on the other side of the store could hear her. She normally isn’t a loud girl but tickling proves that her lungs work just fine.

That was about it for the day. A good chill summer day. I did write a list of things that we want to do as a family this summer. In a couple weeks we get to go up to my brother-in-law’s family’s ranch and go swimming, canoeing, ranger riding, etc. We’ll probably stop at the ice cream shop on the way home because we can’t just drive past and not get ice cream. The rest of the things we’ll do are local. I am tempted to buy a couple bicycles for Alex and I so we can go on family bike rides. I haven’t been on a bike in years and years. I used to ride everyday- nothing real far, just little rides around town. A few other things we have planned is playing down at the river, fishing, camping, swimming in the backyard (if we ever get the pool up, June is notoriously cold and rainy here), go to the drive-in movies, and soccer. And of course fixing the house.

After the storm we went out to the garden and Alex transplanted a lot of the cabbage. He’d planted some of them too close. He moved them all around so they have room to grow. We have more radishes than we can eat and they grew really big before we could get to them so we gave them to the chickens. Good that they didn’t go to waste. We get them back in eggs. I was out of eggs in the house for my breakfast and so I went out to the coop and there were five eggs waiting for me. Fresh as you can get eggs for breakfast. It really is a nice and fun little thing to have. I am glad that we can have chickens in our neighborhood.

I was a little antsy before we were all going to go to bed and so I put the leash on Skylar and took a quick 1/2 mile walk. All the neighbors were out, it was such a nice night. Perfect temperature and the mosquitoes weren’t out in full force yet. It is nice to be able to get out and see people socializing again. It is funny because you rarely see anyone in winter, it warms up and everyone is outside to escape being cooped up. It made me feel a little desperate knowing that winter would come again and keep me inside because of the cold. But I will enjoy the season I am in as much as I can and worry about winter when it gets here.

Maybe I should move somewhere warmer? We won’t open that can of worms right now.

Daily Life

Friday was Better than Thursday

Friday morning I got an early start. Evangeline woke me up at 4:30 and I couldn’t get back to sleep. It’s fine. I got up and got going shortly after and made breakfast for Alex and I and as soon as I sat down to eat Evangeline woke up again. An hour later I managed to eat a cold breakfast alone because Alex had gone to work and everyone else was asleep.

Most of the morning was spent holding little kids. After I got in from my walk Noah wanted to sit on my lap and then he promptly fell asleep. I just held him for awhile. They grow up so fast so I hold them when I get a chance.

I got a bit of stuff done. I decluttered an area of the kitchen and the entry closet shelf where everything seems to collect. I put everything where it was supposed to go and threw a few things away. I will say that it was wonderful that the awkwardness of the day before was gone. I didn’t drop anything all day and it felt like a normal day. It seems to work better that way.

When Alex got home we decided to go on a date. Lunch dates seem to work the best. And my favorite restaurant had opened the dining room this week. Yay! The only difference was that there was no bucket of peanuts on the table to eat and no condiments on the table. Alright, not a big deal. I am sure they would have brought some had I asked. But the food was good and it was good to go out and sit down to eat somewhere that wasn’t the car.

In light of the fact that we are going to be redoing the whole kitchen very soon (just waiting on the bank to slowly process everything) I asked  if Alex wanted to go look at furniture, appliances mainly. I have been looking online for what I might want, features, sizes, etc. It was good to go out and see them in the store to get a better idea of how it would work. We also sat on like a bunch of couches. We would love to get new couches, ours are over 13 and 20 years old but with kids and how good they mind and wash their hands and feet I think we’ll stick with what we have until they grow up a little bit more. Not to mention the dog. Though, there is a couch at IKEA that the cover comes off so I could wash it when I want. Hmmm. Either way, I would have to save up for it.

After the furniture store we went grocery shopping. I have been working on my family’s finances this week. I have been studying a program, Budget Boot Camp, (free for the month of May) and I have been putting some of the principles into practice. So when we were planning our weekly menu I had the budget in mind. Guess what? I stuck to the budget! I really need to because getting to the end of the money before the end of the month is no fun. Plus, my goal is to pay off all the student loans and the house in less than 10 years and that isn’t possible without a plan. So wish us luck.

When we got home we made pizza for dinner- the usual Friday night fare. I had leftover taco meat from the taco salad we’d had earlier in the week and thought I would try and make a taco pizza. It was so good! I will definitely be making it again. Elizabeth saw me spreading beans on the dough and thought I had lost my mind. We had a little fun with that. Afterwards we watched a movie we had rented, Dr. Doolittle, the new one, and I was so tired I fell asleep in the middle of it. Evangeline had fallen asleep in my arms so I took her upstairs and we went to bed and let everyone else finish that movie and then the other movie, Sonic, that we’d rented. Sam had gotten a free rental from school so we used that and he was excited to be able to contribute.

This morning, Saturday, I was up early, 6:30 and I looked outside. Snow on the ground and it was still snowing! Great start to the holiday weekend. But it could be worse. My neighbor and her family have an annual camping trip/family reunion that has been going on for like 100 years. They get to camp in the cold, rain and snow this weekend. Glad it isn’t me. I just hope my garden and apple trees survive the snow. We’ll see in a bit.

Daily Life, Dating My Sweetheart

Tuesday

Tuesday was a good day. Monday had been a struggle in the fact that the house was a disaster. I told myself I would keep this blog real and this is real. I had been meaning to get the kitchen/ dining room portion of the basement cleaned for days. We’d cleaned the carpeted/living area daily but beyond the couch the kids didn’t recognize as being part of the basement. They didn’t consider their rooms to be part of it, truth be known. It had gotten bad and one reason or another it had slipped off the to do list. Out of sight out of mind. I’d walk by and say that I’d get to it in a minute and then get distracted by something. My ADD (I swear I have it) would pull me in a million different directions but not to that one thing. Moldy bowls of food were hiding out of sight, sticky spills on the floor and table, pudding splattered on the counters, garbage that didn’t make it to the can. It was looking like a mild case of hoarders. I hadn’t gone into that room, just walked by on my way to do other stuff. I knew I needed to get to it.

I got up and went for a walk. I took the time to pray and I asked for help because I needed help focusing. Sometimes I can focus with laser ability but most of the time I’m like a pinball bouncing around without any clue which direction I’m going to go next. I prayed to be able to find solutions and for help to get done what I needed to get done. As I was praying, I could see in my mind’s eye exactly what needed to be done and in what order and even how to do it. Little miracles. I got everything done that I was needing to do. The kids helped and the mess was cleaned really fast. They even cleaned their rooms quickly. I was shocked because we’d been nagging them for weeks to clean their rooms all the way.

One of the things that I saw to do was a school schedule and a chore chart. I have a couple charts of things the kids need to do and they are fairly good at getting them done but they needed a little more direction. I’ll implement it today and see if I can get the ball rolling.

(It’s true.)

I’ll tell you about another miracle. This is a big one and it is not mine. My sister-in-law moved to be closer to her work this past week. She moved into a rental and cleaned out her house to rent or sell. It is a large townhouse, newer, and thus it isn’t cheap. The economy going down wasn’t going to help matters. She asked for her family to pray that it would sell because she needed it sold this week. We all prayed and y’all, it sold. In less than a week. She signed the papers tonight. An investor happened to be in town today looking for property and bought it right there and then for asking price! God answers some prayers really fast!

Alex and I went on a date tonight. We needed an outing. I told him I wanted a date that didn’t include Walmart. We went and got Taco Time and the guy taking our order didn’t hear half our order. Oh well, we didn’t need it anyways. We drove to a local park and the place was packed! It is a college town and it was all room mates and newlyweds all over. The whole town looks like nothing has changed except you have to do take-out for everything. Social distancing at its finest. Not.

We sat and people watched while we ate in our car. One guy had a gun in the back of his pants. We thought it was a bit odd. Did he really need protection while playing lacrosse with his girlfriend?

The date idea Alex came up with was to find properties for sale that had at least an acre of land and go see them. There were quite a few but only one I would have bought because the view is what I’ve been wanting since I moved here. A view of the Teton mountains. Look it up and tell me you wouldn’t want that outside your window. It was a fun date. We talked and dreamed and didn’t go grocery shopping. And dinner was only $15. Not bad. It is so nice having kids who are old enough to babysit so we can go on a date whenever we need to.

That was pretty much it. Bring on the next day.

Daily Life

Weekend Recap

I almost forgot to write. I was trying to get the kids to cooperate and just go to bed already. The time change doesn’t help anything. Ever.

So this weekend was really busy. Friday was the usual cleaning and since I had spent time looking for stuff and cleaning out closets/rooms, I had stuff that needed to be taken out to the car, stuff that needed sorting and then put away. When the kids came home I had them help me. Alex had to put his tools away. It was a lot of stuff.

We had my sister-in-law’s 20th birthday party to go to. (I even brought a box of stuff that had been left at my house to be sorted through by the relatives.) My sisters have been making balloon garlands for parties lately and I thought it would be a fun decoration so I tried my hand at it. I liked how it turned out but I would do it a little bit different next time. Next time is in about 3 weeks for one of my daughter’s birthday.

The party was chaotic. It is what you can expect when you get 20 kids and 7 adults into one house. The cousins had fun playing, the teenagers were bored and the loudness kind of settled down when a movie, Lady and the Tramp 2, was put on. Alex and my oldest boys and 2 of Alex’s sisters left the party early to go play soccer. They didn’t all end up playing but they left. That is all that matters.

That night I tried again to get the baby to sleep without eating all night. It was another night of her crying. She is stubborn. I was losing sleep. She was losing sleep. I was getting cranky. Really cranky. I am not a yeller. At all. Ask anyone. I don’t yell. This weekend I got loud and short tempered. I am usually quiet and laid back. But I tried again.

Saturday was the day the little boys were looking forward to. I had taken the girls to the movie last week so this was their turn. They had to clean the house first, everyone did. And they did. We cleaned it from top to bottom. Can you tell the next day? Meh. But I enjoyed it for the few minutes it was cleaned. But Alex did do a good deed. The kids had messed up one of the couches. The fabric had split and if you sat in the middle you could/would sink between the springs. Not the safest. So he got a rope, tied up the springs and sewed the fabric back up. He did a fairly good job. It looks better and is safe now.

The little boys and I took off after that. We went to see Spies in Disguise. I wasn’t a fan. There where a few parts that I thought were clever and funny and the premise of the movie was good but I won’t see it again or buy it for the fact that they put some inappropriate content in there that just didn’t need to be added. But the boys had fun. They refilled the popcorn bucket twice and the soda twice. You do the math. Three boys, three containers of popcorn and soda. How many bathroom trips did we have to make before we got home? Too many.

Since I wanted to do something else with the boys I took them to the car wash. We had driven Alex’s car because we could and it was dirty. Inside and out. I thought it would be a fun little service project for the boys and me. I took a video of Noah during the whole car wash. He was very unsure about the whole thing and his reaction was so cute. He’d giggle and then look panicked and repeat the cycle. Afterwards we took full advantage of the free vacuums (that you actually pay for, who do they think they are kidding?) and we cleaned the whole inside. He is in his car for 1.5 hours a day. It was a mess. But not anymore! The boys were helpful, too. And we had to stop mid-vacuum for a bathroom break, ten minutes after the last one.

By the time we got home, made and ate dinner, I was so tired. I had been running since the sun came up and I was done in. Since I had been getting ornerier and ornerier I decided that I give up and just fed the baby on demand last night. I needed my sleep so bad. I probably undid any progress I had made (did I even make any progress?) and I didn’t care. I got sleep. And with the time change, I needed all the help I could get. I can’t promise that I won’t take a nap tomorrow because chances are pretty good that I will.

Sunday was kind of a lazy day. I cleaned the kitchen, I had to, but again, you can’t tell. I made cinnamon rolls- again and made more messes. This time I took some to a friend when I returned her pot she’d let me borrow when I took some leftovers home a couple weeks ago. I hadn’t talked to her in a while and I really don’t want that many leftover cinnamon rolls. They were my downfall last week and really pulled me off the wagon, health and eating wise. I need to get a less delicious hobby.

Yeah, eating has been awful this week. I’m back at it again tomorrow. Wish me luck.

For now though, I am going to bed. I am tired and no matter how much I don’t want to, I still have to get up in the morning.