Monday, January 25, 2016

Rest assured, I still blog

*Flips through journal and planner and looks back at the last blog post* Great! I'm actually not quite as behind as I thought. Only 2 and a half weeks... *Ducks head* But think about it, I have been blogging consistently since last May and this is the first time I have fallen "majorly behind" since I began. It was bound to happen sometime... However, I'd rather not repeat the experience...

Okay, we did not have a sudden stomach bug relapse and all die because of it. Obviously. Let your mind now be at ease and sit back to enjoy hearing what in the world has been going on with us the past almost three weeks. Sorry it's been so long...

Days in the Life... 

Monday morning, long long ago, I left the house early to go have coffee at Starbucks with a friend. Before she arrived I had my Bible time. Then the dreaded text came through, Chloe and Dad had now caught the stomach bug. The quarantine was going to have to go back into effect. (It had just ended on Sunday.)

So I contacted the mothers of all the children I was scheduled to nanny that week and let them know that I was not sick, but almost my entire family had been or was. Most decided they would rather I not keep their kids that week. (Completely understandable.) So within a few minutes my jammed week emptied out. (At least the first half of it anyways...)

I still got to visit with and encourage my friend before going home around noon.

As far as I can remember Dad cancelled his meetings for the day, but still pushed through with design work. The littles played together, Christian worked on school, and Chloe stayed in her room completely miserable. She had the worst case of any of us.

Dad actually felt much better by that evening.

Tuesday Kate did not come and I almost cried. (I'm pretty sure Gabe did.)

We, those of us who felt up to it, did the third Cize workout for the first time. I think it was easier than the second, but they both make the first one seem like marching in place.

In the afternoon I took Ava and Mia to our tiny town library (it was a loose quarantine...) and then dropped them off at home so that I could go meet a friend at Walmart. I wanted help getting pictures printed sometime and she offered that up as on option, spur of the moment, right after lunch, so I made it work. It helped me stop missing Kate so much.

That adventure took me much longer than I had anticipated, but it ended up being a good thing I'd gone.

Ava was making muffins by herself when I got home! She is becoming very self-sufficient in the kitchen, it's really fun to watch.

Wednesday, since I never got the stomach bug and the others were better, I was able to start another nanny job. The family whose two and three year old I cared for all last summer also have an almost one year old baby boy, Calvin. I will be watching him most Wednesdays!

That job began at their house at 8:30 so I was up and out of the house early.

On the way I needed to stop for gas. It's a good thing I planned an extra 15 minutes something I pretty much never think to do. In case you weren't aware, hitting the wrong gas grade button does not work very well. At all. I did realize my mistake before I started actually pumping diesel into my car, but when I cancelled the transaction it messed up my debit card. I ended up going inside to pay with cash and made it to work just barely on time. We aren't going to go back and count how many times I've had "fun" adventures while trying to get gas. We just aren't. And I still haven't figured out the clicker thing that supposedly holds the handle down for you while you pump. I just haven't.

Calvin is like Kate in that he wants to be held all the time. But he is a boy, so that means he does not stay still. He prefers active snuggling, so it's a little harder to get things done while holding him. Plus he is just a lot heavier than Kate.

Teething is always fun (and what I really mean is it's not), but it meant that he was happy to let me feed him and then hold him until he fell asleep. Melt my heart.

I got home before 3:00 and we all did Cize together. Chloe, the last one to get sick, was finally better!

Thursday morning we all decided our third time to do a new Cize routine is our favorite, by then we are feeling much more like we are dancing and much less like we would rather be "hiding in our basement because we look so uncoordinated."

I needed to shower and get packed to be gone for the weekend when we finished. Aunt Lauren had been asked to speak at a ladies retreat and invited me to go with her.

Before I left around 2:00 in the afternoon, the littles wanted me to dance the Virginia Reel with them. They love that dance so much! (We need to teach them a new one...)

Even though it was raining, I drove myself to Dallas for the first time, almost no problem! There was a split second where I almost got hit by an 18-wheeler who was not paying attention, but he saw me before I got run off the road. I guess I should probably learn how to use my horn...

Aunt Lauren and I made hot chocolate and spent a couple of hours catching up until Uncle Phil got home. Then I visited with him and watched while he made dinner.

We watched "A Walk to Remember" and I cried. It was a really sweet story.

Friday Aunt Lauren and I drove to the lake house where the retreat was to take place. The drive lasted about 4 hours, but we stopped in Waco to go to the new store "Magnolia" and eat lunch at Jason's Deli. Uncle Phil had snuck chocolate peppermint cookies into the car for us. We were so excited when we found them!

We arrived mid afternoon and were shown to our rooms and got to meet the ladies and younger teen girls who were already present.

The lake house was gorgeous! I could not get over the view.

The rest of the ladies arrived before dinner and the evening was spent getting to know everyone in addition to a time of worship. 

The report from home was that "Babe's is still good." I guess they finally used that gift card and went to dinner. 

Saturday morning I woke up having gotten plenty of sleep. 

Aunt Lauren began speaking at 9:00 after some singing. Following each session there was time for reflection. 

After lunch I took a walk down to the lake with some of the others. It was windy but not unpleasant. 

This is a disc golf goal(?). 
It has something to do with disc golf. 

After the last session in the afternoon I went outside for my reflection time. I love being outside. I didn't used to. I think the more I learn about God, though, the more I enjoy being in His creation and enjoying the beauty He placed here for us to see and praise Him for. This is only earth. What will Heaven be like? 

That evening after dinner we had a spa night with foot soaks and massages and facials. It was beautiful to serve each other in that way. 

The first night we went to bed at 11:00, the second night we stayed up a little longer... But both times everyone got plenty of sleep, though. 

Sunday morning we sang and shared things that had been special to us about the weekend, what we'd learned about prayer (that was the topic), and how we'd seen God working. 

Aunt Lauren and I left about noon and got lunch on the road. It was special to get to review the weekend together and have more time to share. My prayer going into the weekend was that I would be blessed, but also be a blessing. God was so faithful to answer those prayers in such beautiful ways, ways that I would have never, ever expected.  

We got back to their apartment close to 4:00 and then I drove home. 

The others had had a very laid back weekend and were as excited to have me back as I was to be back. (That equals a lot.) 

I was able to unpack and catch up with everyone as well as on things that'd I'd gotten behind on, like emails and texts for example. I realized when I arrived at the lake house that the wifi and cell reception was really bad, so I just turned my phone off. It was one of the best things I could have done, I think, to allow myself to fully engage with the people there, even though I'd never met them before, and really pour into the conversations and relationships. 

Grandfather and a friend of his joined us for dinner that night. 

That Moment When...

Another older gentleman tells you you have pretty hair. In Walmart.

The tv turns on randomly by itself.

Mom buys 60 avocados.

The Herd: Quoted 

"Now, if you want you can take these dishes over to the sink and have fun with the bubbles while you wash them! Sound fun?" -Ava
"Nice try, Ava, nice try." -Me  
"Nope, not doing it." -Gabe

"Great, I split my pants." -Christian 

"I had it for a whole split second!" -Christian 

"If you want longer hair, Gabe, eat more carrots!" -Mia 
"Or you can just put carrot in your hair like I did just now." -Me  
"Why did you do that?" -Gabe (probably, I actually don't remember exactly who said that...)  
"It was an accident and I already had chocolate in it from earlier!" -Me

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