Finding calm in the chaos

Finding calm in the chaos

Friday, July 19, 2013

David and Goliath

 
Life has been crazy lately. Joe and Steve--now Farmer Joe and Farmer Steve--have been tending to their corn like a baby, moving sprinklers every 4-8 hours. Joe's been moving the last sprinkler at 9p and getting up at 4am to move the water again the next day.
 
We are a tired little family.
 
But, good husband that he is, he made time to come home from mowing corn so I could go on my Saturday run (well, now it's a walk) with my running buddies. And I came home to a clean house, an emptied dishwasher and this:
 
A puppet show!
Sam colored the scenery. ND did a little unauthorized coloring on it of her own, which stirred up a little conflict.

From left to right: Sam as "Dave", Joe as "Goliath", and ND--well, we're not really sure. Her puppet had a tissue paper train....she may have been a bride.

Joe read the story and helped Sam with his lines. I loved it.

Monday, July 15, 2013

farm-wifery: corn photos

 
Henry's been sleeping a little bit better since he finished his amoxicillin and can, you know, breathe and stuff. But, he's a hungry fellow and usually nurses a couple of times a night. I soldier on through the night, getting up to nurse him in his room rather than taking him to bed, but for some reason, I just cannot drag my body out of bed for that 4:30am feeding. I just cannot.
 
I used to feel bad about poking Joe and mumbling, "Bring me your baby" so I could get a little extra sleep. But, these days, Joe's usually up.
 
 
Tending this baby.
This ever-thirsty corn.



 He and Steve move those sprinklers every 4 to 8 hours. It's crazy.

Can't we just put in an underground sprinkler system next year?

Sunday, July 14, 2013

pool party

 
Did I mention one of Team Eddy's graduation presents to themselves was a new house? No more living in their 900 square foot house with 6 people...they bought themselves a grown-up house.
 
With a pool.
 
And a hot tub.
 
We're calling dibs on the guest room right now.
 
The day after Amy's graduation, they hadn't actually moved into the house yet, but it was officially theirs, so they invited us over for a quick swim before we headed home to Lewiston.
We had breakfast at the motel, packed up and got in our suits.

Holy Choly was there to hold Henry (who had a cold) while the rest of us played in the pool.

Sam and ND did fairly well for just starting swimming lessons. Well, Sam did well. ND didn't want to actually get wet but wanted to swim. It was a dilemma.

Karen and Glory

Team Eddy

Noah, warming up on the deck

Kate, also warming up. It was only in the 70s outside and the pool wasn't much warmer. Little bodies get cold so fast, but they wanted to swim so badly.

Joe is always a little on edge when our kids are in the water.

My brief foray into the COLD water.

Henry with his daddy

Glory at the end of the day

We had so much fun that we spontaneously decided to have a sleepover at the new house. Amy ran back to their house and grabbed some linens and an air mattress so we could all stay.

Friday, July 12, 2013

amy's graduation

We, as usual, were the largest group of people there.
I think one of the ploys of medical students and residents to pay off their student loans is to hold graduations frequently--almost annually, in fact. Nonetheless, this was Amy's graduation from her residency and she promised us it would be the last time we'd have to get to attend one of these shindigs, so we loaded up the crew and drove to Spokane. (Our crew also included Super Sitter Mary Kate to watch Sam and ND swim at our hotel while we went to the fancy-schmancy dinner with Henry. Nursing infants--they get to go anywhere and everywhere).

Amy didn't really know what to do without any children around. Her hands just kept fidgeting around until she grabbed my baby. Then she seemed to settle down.

Amy graduating...again. Dr Benson had some nice things to say about her being super organized, compassionate, and yada-yada. Her co-residents gave me the real scoop: she's sassy and bossy. But, I already knew that.

The whole fam-damily: (L-R) U Mark, Marilyn and Dan Kuhlman, Dan Johnson, Mom, Kevin, Amy, Karen, Aunt Becs, Loren, Joe, Jen, Henry, Aunt Ris

The Kuhlmans adopted Amy and Kevin when the twins were born. We wish they'd adopt us, too. They are amazing!

First date night out since Henry was born.

Like father, like son.

Amy, Lala (holding Henry) and Jen. Almost ZERO of her co-residents and faculty realized she was a twin, which led to a lot of confusion.
"When did you cut your hair?"
 "You changed your dress? Again?"
"What's going on????"

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Henry's 4 month bear pictures





 
Henry is now 4 (and a half) months old.
  • He's a whopping 19lbs and is taking a bottle at daycare a bit better.
  • We started sleep training, which is always hard on both mama and baby, but he's been sleeping for a 4 hour chunk at night and I feel like a new woman.
  • He continues to be a happy, easy going baby...as long as you keep him fed and don't put him in his carseat.
  • He rolls over, giggles, coos, babbles and is working on sitting up. The milestones are flying by. Henry, slow down...you're just a baby.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

the worst summer vacation (part two)

Night comes late and morning comes early when you are in a cabin of windows without curtains. Henry and Natalie both did not sleep and Natalie was up with the sun (literally, like at 4:30a). Her tired mama tried to make the best of it and we snuggled on the couch and tried to be quiet so everyone else could sleep. We all had a leisurely morning, drinking coffee and watching the kids play together until it was time to get ready for the wedding.
 
As we took our seats for the wedding, it was quickly apparent that our children (ND in particular) were overtired. All 3 Kaufman kids wanted me to hold them and when ND realized that was impossible, she threw a huge tantrum right as the wedding was started. No amount of coaxing, cajoling or threatening would quiet her, so I dragged her off to the minivan for a time-out.
I was so frustrated. After all we'd been through, I didn't even get to see the wedding! I took a time-out myself, chanting (as I often do with my strong-willed daughter) "God has a special plan for you. He made you stubborn for a reason. God has a special plan for you." When we'd both calmed down and made up, we headed back across the lawn just in time to see the newly married couple march down the aisle to the receiving line.

Things got a little better. I managed to visit with a few relatives, eat some delicious fish tacos and about one hundred homemade buttercream mints. Most people were more than willing to hold my fat baby, so my arms got a rest and I watched our kids play. The fun eventually caught up with Sam and I knew it was time for us to make a graceful exit when he threw himself on the grass crying after a disagreement with Noah. The Eddy kids, however, just kept on going with boundless energy, so Team Eddy stayed to party it up.

That evening at the cabin was my favorite part of the weekend. The big kids and I skipped some rocks and played outside while Joe rocked Henry inside. Eventually, Henry woke up and Joe came outside to start a campfire so we could roast marshmallows. The Eddys saw our smoke signals across the lake and came home to join the fun.

Joe and I got our kids to bed fairly early and I headed to bed myself. In the middle of the night, I woke up to Joe, moaning in bed beside me.

Joe: Ugh. How are you feeling?
Me: (thinking about while I nurse Henry). Actually...not very good. I need to throw up.

At that moment, we both dashed to the bathroom and took turns throwing up the rest of the night. In the morning, Amy & Kevin packed us up while Mom and Dan watched kids. Then, Team Eddy wrestled our bodies into our respective vans and we began the long trek back home. Kevin had to stop for Joe to throw up in the ditch and Joe said he just wished Kevin would have left him there, in the warm sunshine and driven off without him.

Driving in a car when you have food poisoning is notsomuch fun.

I didn't have to throw up until a deer stepped into the road and Amy swerved maniacally to avoid hitting it.

Again, driving in a car when you have food poisoning is notsomuch fun.

We managed to get our crew back to Lewiston and into bed and make it to work the next day. But, I cancelled our trip to Seattle at the end of July. We're not going anywhere ever again.

Ever.

Saturday, July 06, 2013

the worst summer vacation ever (part one)

My cousin Jake and his fiancée Heather were finally getting married and I was not going to miss it. We made plans well in advance to road trip over to Montana with Team Eddy and, as the date approached, booked a cabin on the same lake where the wedding was to take place. We scheduled our vacation time, I meticulously planned our menu with kid-friendly, healthy food, and made packing list after packing list to ensure the trip would go as smooth as possible with 7 kids 7 and under.
Of course, I knew that no vacation would be complete without a few hitches. Henry hates his carseat and cries at ear-shattering decibels whenever he's required to ride for more than 15 minutes. It's enough to make you want to perforate your own ear drums. We were all dreading the 4 1/2 hour drive with the screaming baby, but you gotta do what you gotta do.
 
Amazingly, we left Lewiston only an hour behind schedule and all 3 of our kids settled peacefully in for the 2 hour drive to Spokane. Henry sucked happily on his fingers and nodded off to sleep about halfway there. Maybe this vacation would be easier than I'd thought...
 
We lunched at Team Eddy's new house and swam before setting off on the 2nd leg of our journey. Amy & I took the younger 3 in their minivan while Joe and Kevin took the older 4 in our minivan with the better DVD player. All was well until two minutes onto the freeway when Amy starts freaking out.
 
Amy: Uh-oh. Uh-oh.
Me: What?
Amy: Uh...I think I'm out of gas. I have to get over now. No, wait, I can't get over! I'm losing speed! Wave those people by! Call Kevin and have him bring us gas!
 
We ended up pulling over in the left shoulder of I-90 just beyond a blind curve. Cars and truck sped by and shook our van every few seconds; some honked irately...as if that was helpful in any way. Just in case this ever happens to you, you should know the appropriate action is to just go ahead and call 911. (My sister--smart enough to graduate from medical school, not smart enough to fill a gas tank--redeemed herself by making that call). A huge WSDOT pickup came up within a few minutes and literally pushed our van across three lanes of traffic to the right shoulder, gave us a few glugs of gas and then we were off. A bit shaken, but finally on our way.
 
Henry cried the whole way to Sandpoint and at Sandpoint, Ellie joined in on the wailing. I climbed in the back to try to calm everyone down. Unfortunately, Sandpoint was a critical juncture of our trip and since I, the navigator, was now in the back, we ended up getting lost. Kevin and Joe had lost the directions I'd printed for them long ago, so Joe took it upon himself to google the directions. This would have been fine...IF he'd known our actual destination. Instead, he vaguely remembered we were heading somewhere close to Troy, MT and took us north...
 
...adding another 2 hours to our trip.
 
Henry was NOT happy about this new development.
 
Nonetheless, we were thankful to finally reach our cabin that evening. Tempers were running a little high until we actually got inside and the kids ran around to explore. We roasted hot dogs for dinner and settled in for a good weekend ahead.
 
(To be continued...)

Making dinner at the cabin

A stray deer in the neighborhood

Learning to skip rocks on the lake

The cabin

Ellie LOVED the cabin.

Play-doh in the morning