Saturday, September 10, 2016
Grab a seat, it's going to be a long one . . .
Now an update (grab a seat!):
Ben - Well of course it's always stressful being a bishop. But these past few weeks has been a bit more so as he has been working on his Ward Conference talk. He has spent hours and hours writing it, and then more hours scratching out what he had and starting over. :) But Ward Conference is coming up this Sunday, so ready or not . . . He'll be ready and it will be great. As always. Work is going well for him - he gets a few chances each week to first-assist and that is his favorite. He works some Mondays at the hospital solely as a first-assist and that has been pretty good as well. He went sailing three times this summer (four if you count his ALL-day lesson in Annapolis!) - which might not seem like a lot, but it's like three more times than he went last year. :) I went once with him - which, of course, is one more time than last year. Go me. He has a beard and I think it will be a life-long thing with him? We'll see. He's been swimming laps at the pool twice a week, but more on that later.
Me - I started my orientation the first full week of school and it was a little crazy. Thank goodness Jim and Diana (Ben's parents) came for that first week! I worked about 40 hours and it was stressful. I missed just being home and sending my kids off and picking them up each day. And, of course, it was just stressful starting a new job. I haven't done nursing in 7 years and so I felt like a newbie all over. No fun. The second week was slightly better and slightly worse (I had to take my own patients - boohoo, but a necessary!) I ended up having to call in and cancel for Thursday as Lucy was heaving that day. :( But I managed to survive those first weeks of full-time day orientation. This week the floor was closed and then I'll start next week with 2 nights of orientation. Then I'll work the next week - out of orientation, so as a real nurse with her own patients. Sigh. I think this will work out, but I do wonder why I didn't take a year off before getting a job. Oh well. What's done is done.
So I hadn't really gotten much of "alone days" these first few weeks of school. I did have a Friday that first week and it was pretty much spent by running, and then running around getting some final things in order for Emmy's birthday. The next week I had to stay home on Thursday with Lucy. Then the kids were out of school Friday. So nothing that week! I'm not complaining, it was just kind of funny, I guess. This week I've had 4 days without the kids and I feel like I haven't gotten much accomplished! I did a hike (small one), attended a PAC meeting, ran a PAC meeting, went VTing, went mountain biking with Brigham, did a 10-mile run, got dinner for the missionaries ready, took our older-friend to the library and set her up with an email account, etc. So I've done a lot, but not things like clean the house. Or mow the lawn like I said I would. Whoops.
Miles - he is doing well, I think. I can get online and check every day to see where he is at at school, what assignments are due, etc. Instead, I just ask him/tell him each day: "Do your homework." "Are you keeping up with all your classwork?" I guess we'll see if that works when grades come out. :) I don't want to micro-manage him by getting online and looking at everything - that's his job as a student. Right? I feel a little "wrong" as I know many other parents who use that. Maybe someday I will, who knows. Anyways, back to Miles. We got a phone call from his life skills teacher (life skills = home ec.) and she just adores him. Miles has really gotten in to sewing at home (sock creatures mainly) and she was delighted with that. Miles has already finished his project for class and so she is looking to find him something "more challenging." Ha, my little sewer. The kid has matured. Sometimes it's hard to see, but it's happened and is happening. He's a good kid and is actually a great example to his younger siblings - in most areas, not all. He's not a good example on how to not make loud noises all the time at home. He's a neat kid and we're proud of him and his "growing up."
Jonas - I have heard from Jonas' teacher a few times. Unfortunately it wasn't along the same lines as Miles' teacher. Fortunately, it's nothing "serious." :) Just, ya know, Jonas crawling under tables in the classroom - stuff like that. (It was "free-time" as Jonas stated for his defense!) He's a good kid, but not a sit-in-your-seat perfect type of student kid. He's doing well in school and seems to catch on quickly with his math. I've actually been impressed with what he is already doing in 5th grade - and the fact that he gets it (for the most part; I did have to help him fix a couple wrong answers yesterday . . .). Some big news: Jonas made the swim team! I think anyone who could sort-of swim made the team, but still! He even made the second-level team and so we are excited for him. It's a long story, but I was able to convince Ben to take Jonas on the 2nd night of try-outs and Ben came back saying Jonas did great and everyone was happy. :) We've heard really good things about the swim team here and so were are excited and just hope this can be Jonas' "thing." He really needs a "thing" where he can do well and feel good about himself! Cross your fingers, everyone! He'll begin practice next week. Go Jonas.
Emmy - She is enjoying school and her teachers. The 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade kids go to all the teachers in their grade for the core subjects of reading, writing, and math (one teacher teaches one of the core subjects to every classroom - does that make sense?!). She's happy with school and always finds friends. I think it's so interesting how her friends change with classroom assignments. Her best friends have always been in her classroom. Like last year it was Analicia. But she's in another class this year and so Emmy's best-friends this year, so far, are Jordan and Rosa. Both in her class. I should get a picture of the trio - it would be awesome and colorful as one is Caucasian , one is Hispanic, and one is African-American. :) She continues to love gymnastics, but is sad every time I pick her up because she can't do her back-handsprings anymore (every since we took time off to go back east). She'll get them and she has gotten some other skills, so she'll be okay. But it is frustrating to her. Practice makes perfect, right?!
Lucy - She is doing great in school, as far as I know! She's happy going and she's happy when I pick her up. So those are good signs. I will start volunteering in the classrooms - all of them (well, not Miles, I guess!) - next week and so that will be fun to see the kids in their classrooms, especially Lucy as I have never seen her in school before! She continues to play with her 2 neighborhood friends, Dory and Genevieve, at lunchtime and recess. But she talks about a lot of other kids and says they are nice (except the one that supposedly pushed her down a slide . . .). She loves art and PE - of course. She enjoys having hot-lunch once a week. :) She has started her 2nd year of music class and just loves it. This year is keyboard and so it's pretty exciting. She does get tired by the end of the day still, but still is doing great overall. She's thoughtful and amazing. I miss her, but love that she is finally in school, too!
The dogs are well. Wilson's appetite always seems to wax and wane - currently it has "waxed." He can't wait for someone to pour his breakfast! He is pretty deaf. Brigham had a good week of hiking with me, running while I biked, going on a long run, etc. He's great.
Family - So we are training for a mini-triathlon. Yes, we were inspired by the Olympics! We woke up one Saturday and watched the women's triathlon and it was awesome. I have known about a local triathlon that happens right here in town and so I thought maybe the three oldest kids could do it (I've known that kids can enter as a team and each do one event.). Anyways, I got online and saw that families could enter in teams of 3 - perfect, we've got 2 teams then! Ben and the little girls and me and the boys. You swim/bike/run according to your age. So for Ben's team, Ben is the swimmer and will swim 10 laps; Lucy is the biker and will bike a 5K (with Ben riding alongside her . . .); Emmy is the runner and will run a 2K. For my team, Jonas will start us off by swimming 2 laps; Miles will bike a 10K, and I will run a 5K. Fun, huh?! I'm super excited about it and so are the kids. We've all been doing some "triathlon training" - about twice a week. Ben and Jonas go swimming and both are increasing their endurance. Yay. I take the other kids out for some running and biking training a couple of times a week.. This week, I've taken the kids to Miles' school's track and have run with Emmy (6 laps) and then run with Lucy as she finishes up her 10 laps of biking. Brigham came, too, and had fun running around. Miles had fun on my road-bike - it's fast on a track. Jonas took a few turns on my road-bike, too. They love how fast it can go. :) Guess what Jonas wants for his birthday?! Yep, a road-bike. :
Anyways, that's enough. Life is crazy. Life is good.