Everett found himself a job for a couple days! He let Amelia share the responsibility of caring for Gambit, our neighbor's dog while they went on vacation. The kids enjoyed going over several times each day to play with, feed, water, and settle the dog down. In the end the kids each earned $15 for working several days. We also had a chance to swim in their pool on Wednesday, it was a scorcher!
We started out the week with doctor visits for Phillip and Evelyn's well-child check ups. Those two really grew the past year. Phillip was a huge helper with Gabi, he held her most of time! Josie made us all laugh, she climbed the little stairs up to the examining table, and started to sing, "Let it go! Don't Care!" Guess she felt like Elsa, Queen of the world, on those stairs. Evelyn hid under my chair until it was her turn to get examined. She was quite aware of the necessary kindergarten shots. Once the shots came she did beautifully! Did not complain about her arms hurting at all. Phillip got one flu shot and complained for 3 days about his painful arm. The appointment took much longer than it should have. The kids missed school lunch so we splurged with McD and the play place for lunch.
Pack meeting this month was quite memorable with Brother Payne teaching us about Police work. He showed the kids some of his gear, we got to chat with his radio dispatcher, and listen to some stories. After awards and donuts we had a moment to explore his police vehicle! The spinning lights actually made me nauseous, I was not expecting that at all. Next day Amelia had stake Activity Days. She got to make buttermilk pancakes and syrup as part of a two hour faux sleepover. Sounds like she had quite a fun time.
Wednesday was a blessedly cool and rainy day. We soaked up the rain for a few hours in the afternoon. Gabi loved the overcast and rain, slept like a champ for the first time in 7 days. I met the kids at the bus stop with my rainbow umbrella. We stomp in all the puddles on our way home. The kids immediately changed into rain clothes and unloaded bikes, scooters, and crutches (why?) to play outside in the rain. Mia and I left for piano so the boys and Evelyn decided to stay home. In the 40 minutes I was gone Phillip set up an elaborate picnic snack on the kitchen floor, hot chocolate included. He responsibly made sure reading time was completed before we returned home! Once I was back home the kids all raced outside to enjoy the rain. Rain is a holiday.
Josie noticed the new pumpkin displays are out. Each time we pass one she crones lovingly at the tiny baby pumpkins. I got her a cute baby pumpkin to take care of! She enjoyed painting her pumpkin with some kid paints. Her vocal description as she changed paint colors and described what she was doing had me giggling. Evelyn came home and washed off all the paint, stinker! I cared more than Josie did. On Friday I took Josie to "Giggles" and indoor toddler play ground. Josie walked in and did not stop exploring for a good two hours. Her eyes were huge as she surveyed the place, deciding what to do first was a struggle. Her favorite activities were: riding the roller coaster Thomas Train, the wooden play structure, the play house, and the shopping carts. Two other gals from my ward were also there so we had a nice time to talk. I took some cute photos of Gabi, who just turned 2 months old and little Liberty again. Sister Payne found some of her mother's baby clothes, bonnets, shoes, jewelry, etc she wanted to put Liberty in. Totally up my alley! Gotta love that vintage vibe. Josie found a green stamper during the session. She marked up herself when I was not paying attention. Ha ha ha. We also watched Leo a couple times this week, along with Gabi we were loaded up full with little kiddos.
I spent 21 hours kid and family free at our yearly RS retreat in Strawberry, AZ. The Wolford's invited us all back again this year! Their cabin is quite lovely and cozy. Cari Sue drove her car with me, Corynn Payne, and Kathy Muro along for the ride. We stopped for dinner at Jimmy John's then hauled off for the high country. I managed to have the worst migraine this month right before the retreat started. By the time we arrived I was nauseous and seeing stars. Held myself together and still enjoyed the fun. Next morning I managed to sleep in a bit trying to kick my headache, it worked a bit lessening it's hold to a headache. After a delicious breakfast we gathered for a devotional. I was asked to give a 15 minute thought on "our hearts knit together" and how that relates to Ministering. While writing down my thoughts Wednesday and Thursday the words and references came quickly. The Lord had something to say, it was said! We stayed to help clean up and play in the game room until most other folks left. I loved the glimpse of fall crispness in the air. Coming home was pretty awesome too! The sweet hugs and greetings were most appreciated. Justin did a fine job, even managing to clean up the house a bit. He's trying to show me up! Just teasing.
Sunday was a shade of crazy at church. We are practicing for the Primary program this coming Sunday so combined Junior and Senior for two hours. I barely sat down for two seconds! I used a magical microwave and cookie ingredients to help the kids sing through all the songs multiple times. Thankfully the microwave did it's magic and delivered 6 dozen freshly baked cookies! I earned my Sunday nap. I got a cute new dress in the mail. Yay! I love the color, one of my best colors to wear. I feel frustrated most of the time because I am not losing anymore weight. I still feel exhausted and worn out. I ordered a year subscription to work out at home through Beachbody but have I done a single workout yet? Nope. Now with Gabi here in the mornings things are crazy again. Getting myself out of bed before 6:45 seems impossible. I wake up tired and go to be exhausted. My mom suggested I do a sleep study! Maybe I snore like a bear or have sleep apnea. I guess it's one more box I can check off. It's been 7 months since I started with Envoque seeking some answers. I am on like 10 supplements, naturethroid, methlycobalamine shots, and occasional vitamin drips. Nothing. Still feel like crap. So frustrating.
Amelia read My Side of the Mountain and Where the Red Fern Grows this past week. Makes my nerd heart so happy to see her reading those beloved classics. This week I read the boys the Boxcar Children before bed. We all had tears in our eyes towards the end of the book. Everett sure enjoyed the story and wants to read it again. I'm now reading the Five Little Peppers. Phillip loves the older English slang from a much earlier century.