Friday, August 3, 2012

Mi Vida . . .

Life lately -
Thanks to Melissa (m-i-l), who is an employee of Marquette General, we went to a fun MGH picnic with the kids.  I think the pony rides were the favorite. . . or maybe it was the chocolate fountain . . . or the bounce houses . . . or maybe it was the fishy crafts?   The kids loved it.  Thank you for a fun afternoon, GramMelissa!

 We said good-bye to Auntie KC who headed off to Utah last week.  Benjamin got his special bowling date in before she left, and it made his day.  We had a pizza party at Chuck and Melissa's right before she left to wish her luck one last time.  And there were only a few tears from Anna.  :)  We'll all miss her, but we're so excited for her new adventure!

I ended up having to stay home from the Jones Reunion in Indiana with a sicky Caleb.  It was a hard decision to come to, but one that I ultimately knew was the right choice.  The photo above is Anna and Benjamin ready to GO.  (My parents offered to take them along . . . which was so sweet because they had a blast and were able to bond with lots of Jones family and represent us.)  So many fun pictures, but all on my dad's camera, so I may post some later - camping, swimming, family, Indiana Beach (amusement park), hotel stay, games with cousins, Logansport & Rochester (it's been forever!), remembering Pappy George, etc. 

My parents and I took the kids out to visit my grandparents LaJoice recenly.  It was a beautiful morning, and all the kids had fun with the sprinkler, wagon rides, and bubbles.  And all the grown-ups were completely entertained watching them. 

Above - fun find at the dollar store.  The kids have had SO much fun with these alligator hats.  Alligator games and plays and chasing galore, and it's only been a couple days.  Not something I went to Dollar Tree looking for, but happy to have grabbed them.  hehe.

A couple pictures of my baby, Cabers.  He really, REALLY enjoyed being the center of attention while Anna and Benjamin were gone.  He was happier (despite being sick), and more talkative and interactive.  Caleb J. was not really excited to see his siblings when they got back.  It was almost like he thought being an only child was the new set up, and he was a little disappointed to discover that wasn't the case.  Ha!  (And the smile above cracks me up.  Caleb has the most adorable smile and laugh, big cheeks and dimples, when it's genuine.  But when you ask him to smile, it looks like something above . . . or weirder.  hehe.) 

So, lately I've been slapping up a few pictures of our activities, and then writing an unrelated gratitude entry or some other topic following the pics.  I think I'll continue with this trend for now.  Here is the topic for today, hehe: 

Things I Learned About Sending My Kids Away On A Trip -
  • This was the longest I've spent apart from any of my kids - 4 nights 5 days.  It was a little too long . . . mostly for me.  (Although it was good to hear my parents say Anna Banana and Ben-Ben were really well behaved on the trip and had such a fun filled time.)  Maybe if it was Ethan and I to go away for that amount of time, it'd be easier.  But sending them out into the world for that long - it was hard for me!  But we all survived!  
  • I used an over-the-counter sleep aide for the first time while they were gone.  Being apart from them - when they were the ones to be gone as opposed to me going away for a trip - gave me some anxiety.  Especially at night.  I'm glad Ethan recommended it, because I don't think I would have slept well the whole time without it.
  • No one hydrates Anna like her parents.  Before they left, I emphasized to everyone who would listen (including Anna) how important it is for her to drink lots of water and liquids.  Especially since Indiana is having especially HOT weather this summer, and most of the planned activities were outside.  Multiple times on their trip I reminded everyone how important this was, as we discovered last summer that Anna is easily susceptible to kidney infections.  So.  Anna is currently taking antibiotics for a kidney infection.  Enough said.  :)
  • While Caleb is still young, and pretty complicated when he gets sick, I should never commit to anything.  Including mentally committing to something myself.  I should have more of an attitude like this: "We'd love to make it, and we'll clear our schedules.  And as long as everyone is healthy (mostly Caleb), we'll be there."  I was so sad to miss the reunion and plans with a long time friend; there were tears involved.  I think it was partly so dissapointing because Caleb (and everyone) has been so healthy lately, and it's summertime, so I just didn't expect that to be a factor.  But, once I made the decision, and realized it was for the best, I moved on.  Next time!
  • Caleb really enjoyed being the only child for five days.  And I got to remember what it was like to have only one little one (easy!).  The house was so quiet and tidy while the older two were gone.  Turns out that two extra kids produce a lot of extra noise and mess (not just toys - bathroom, mealtime, laundry, craft projects, etc).  Who would have thought?  Ethan and I completely enjoyed lavishing all of our attention on Caleb.  And he mostly responded with cuteness and sweetness. 
  • Final thing I learned - Hmm, probably that I prefer all of my babies under my roof, "protected" in our little nest.  Even though I completely enjoyed the alone time with Caleb, and more time and conversation with Ethan while they were gone, I was so happy to have them home.  SO happy!  I missed them.  It was only five days, but I was so anxious to have them back, and our family complete once again.   And although this sounds contradictory, I learned that it's good for all of us to have time apart once in awhile (I just wish it wasn't for a family reunion).  I am so glad Anna and Ben-Ben were able to have this fun experience and some time away from us with others they love (and so thankful to my parents for making that possible).   And I was so glad I was able to use that time to recharge a bit, and also realize that I miss them like crazy when they're gone . . . even if they drive me crazy when they're here.  hehe.  Love them!
Well, I think it's time to wrap this baby up.  Oh!  Speaking of wrapping - I need to wrap Anna's birthday present.  Yes.  My baby girl is turning 7 - SEVEN - tomorrow.  Time flies.  I can still so clearly think back to her birth day, and becoming a mother for the first time, like it was yesterday.  We have lots of fun things planned, and I'm sure I'll write about it all.  Oh, and I also want to write her birth story on here too - since I wasn't blogging when I had her.  So you can all look forward to that.  hehe.  Happy August!    


mjoray said...

I always tell people now, we will come if no one is sick. I think my parents think it is really strange but it seems like 1/4 of the time someone gets sick, and we can't go. Sorry you missed out on the fun of seeing family :(

Anna said...

Missed you tons! It was fun to see Anna and Ben, though. She would always say to me, "Hi, ANNA!" To which I would reply, "Hi, ANNA!" and good night and good morning and any other reason we could find to do it. Too cute! Seth and Ben had some rough moments...Seth is really the baby of this group and a little used to getting what he wants. But at other times, they got along really well. Come visit sometime! I still have your zoo tickets:)