19 May 2019

End of School Looms Large

I left a Utah spring for Arizona summer! Actually, in all honesty it was quite balmy in Arizona when I arrived home. The next day however...those mild temps blasted up to 100. The kids are swimming most days after school since there is no more homework. 

Monday I spent the entire day cleaning my little heart out. Well, with the exception for the trip to Walmart for ice cream and toppings. Justin and the kids tried to clean but mostly managed damage control. I busted out the dusters, broom, mop, vacuum, and cleaning sprays. Bam! I accomplished lots before the kids came home. They arrived home to threats on their lives if they so much as breathed in the clean house. The reason? It was piano recital day! Hooray! We had lots of folks over to watch their cute little ones perform memorized piano masterpieces. Amelia typed out a handout for me. This time each child played 2 songs each. Amelia and I kicked it off with a rendition of Music Box from Rigoletto. Everett smashed his performance of Lemonade Stand and Supercalifragili-sticexpialidocious. Phillip played wonderfully Donkeys Love Carrots and Star Wars Main Theme. I love how their personalities shine through the music chosen. After the recital the kids pounded ice cream topped with loads of sugar. One parent gave me the stink eye for serving sugar after 6 pm. I wonder if she knows about the candy her daughter earns each week? I'm happy that's over until Christmas time. 

Tuesday the house was back to it's cluttered glory. I'd be an angry mom all the time if I wanted to keep the house perfectly clean. I'd probably get rid of the kids and Justin to do it....good thing my standards are relaxed. I got to photograph a sweet little baby girl, born after three big brothers the youngest of whom is now in 9th grade. I bet she is spoiled with lots of love. After the session I finally cleaned the garage mess by putting away my studio stuff to make room for the van. It's too hot for parking outside in the sun all day. Josie played with dress ups while I worked. I loved the warrior pig with a sword ensemble she put together. 

Everett is one step closer to getting baptized! He had his Bishop's interview with Justin and I in attendance Tuesday evening. He tried so hard to look dapper, that rumpled collar just added to his charm. I quite enjoyed witnessing his interview as Bishop ascertained Everett's worthiness and intent. Everett is the best, such a sweet kid, wanting to try his hardest. We are so proud of Everett's progress the past few months as he's prepared himself. He's nearly halfway through the Book of Mormon. 

After his interview I picked up Isla and Brooklyn so we could support a school fundraiser at 212 Ice Cream studio. Somehow I managed to drop my phone between the ordering counter and the ice cream freezer. Josie was small enough to crawl behind and retrieve it once the freezer was pulled out a bit. Ordering for 8 people is stressful. I managed to make only 2 mistakes, ate one of them. Ha ha. I was not impressed with the ice cream, regular stuff you can get at Walmart. The kids loved using plastic shovels to eat their treat with. 

Wednesday morning Josie had her final ballet/tap class then a short recital. She was NOT happy I made her stay, cried for quite a bit. She managed to pull out her smile for the recital bit. Ballet recitals at that age are like herding cats. Hilarious and darling. She earned her sticker chart and a chocolate cookie for her efforts. Mia competed in a district math competition! Seemed like she enjoyed herself. 

Everett is selling oil pastel art drawings for $3 per sheet. He worked hard one afternoon and whipped out 4 drawings to sell for profit. He has a bright future as an artist. Let me know if you are interested.

Amelia and Chloe plus friends performed in the last strings recital in elementary school on Thursday. We had quite the fun time before the recital choosing outfits and fixing hair. I really need to brush up on my dutch braid skills. Sounds idyllic, in reality we were rushed since I had piano students coming and going. Everett came down with strep so he was down for the count with a high fever and aches. We made it to the recital with time to spare, only for me to realize I forgot a memory card...back home in a rush to get one. Everett was still on the couch with pink cheeks. Back to the recital. Listened to screeching instruments warbling their way through sheets of music. The looks on the kid's faces was priceless! So proud of my girl(s). Justin made it a few minutes before the music started. Ronald and Phillip made green finger spikes using recital program papers. I made them sit near the doors so their paper rustling would not disturb the performers. After the recital I rushed off to take Everett to the pediatrician, confirmed strep, got antibiotics.

Got my food shopping done with Everett's help this week. He navigated the list for me, actually cutting the time in half. Good job buddy! Justin and I enjoyed a much needed date. We dined on Sushi for dinner. I'm in love with sushi with thin slices of lemon on top. Swoon. We finally got to watch Avengers End Game. I wished it inspired me more, mostly it felt slow. BUT...I did feel quite relieved to have the story tied up with a bow in the end.

Saturday we worked for a bit to clean up clutter. Amelia was extra cranky after babysitting until 11 pm. She moaned and was sassy to her siblings. I picked up that great big girl and rocked her like a baby for 5 minutes. She somehow turned into a normal kid after a big hug. All it takes is LOVE. Justin worked whack-a-mole with the sprinkler system. The girls went out to enjoy pedicures at the salon Chloe's dad works at. Josie smeared my polish not 5 minutes after leaving the salon, she stepped on my toes. Boo hoo. I went back later to get the polish fixed. It smeared again even when I was super careful, must've chosen an old bottle of polish. Justin took the boys to Walmart so Everett could look around for birthday present wishes. Our fun Roman Catholic neighbors are moving. They gave us their garage fridge! YAYAYAYAYAY. We are loving the bits of extra room, our fridge is always jammed packed with milk and eggs taking up lots of space. Free-o-hundred baby.

I'm falling apart. Literally. My heart is giving my grief. It skips a beat at least once every 5 minutes. Regular beats...then giant thud to catch up the missed beat. I've had an arrhythmia for many, many years. It's getting worse and more noticeable. I had a 30 second scan, my heart skipped twice. Could be nothing, just making sure. My forearm is killing me. I have absolutely no strength in my right arm now. That same arm was acting up when Amelia was born (it seized up terribly), when I was pregnant with Everett (lost use of that arm for months and months), and recently. The doctor administered a steroid shot to that tendon, hoping it will calm down. It is feeling much less irritated after 3 days. Just as a parting thought I asked the Dr if she could take over the medications I get from Envoque. She said absolutely! I asked about switching me to armor thyroid, she perked up and wrote out a request. Hot dang! I've tried to get armor thyroid for years now! Probably I just need to lose weight and all my health problems will go away. On to adventures wearing a heart monitor. Let's see what this week brings. I hate to complain, I don't want to end up a sour old hag complaining about bad health. Let's get this fixed stat.

We had a nice Come Follow Me lesson this evening on Zaccheaus in the Sycamore tree and learned about the hypocrisy parables. We've renamed our kitchen table to the "Temple Table" when we are doing our lessons.

**Everett can even turn his pants pockets into weapons. He's fancy. 

Grandma Baerwaldt's Funeral

I stewed for a good couple days after learning about Grandma's passing...trying to decide the best way to celebrate her life. If we took all the kids and drove we'd have to squeeze the drive in over the weekend (yikes), just fly Justin and I, just fly me, or not attend at all. I determined I'd kick myself if I didn't go, so kick that option out. We ended up opting for sending just me with Justin at home to man the helm. It was a tough decision. We are grateful the kids and I got to give Grandma last hugs and kisses and tell her how much we love her. I hope that memory lasts.

Monday-Wednesday we had Gabi here all day since Jason was out of town for training. The kids quite enjoyed playing with her before and after school. She is crawling all over the place and getting into everything. She was pleased to learn how to crawl up the stairs, not so pleased when she tumbled down them. Of course that first day Josie came down with the barfs, I thought maybe it was food poisoning since my tummy was also feeling strange. Josie barfed and barfed and barfed. She always missed the bowl and aimed for the clean carpet. I left out the spot carpet cleaning machine for 3 days as I tried to manage the mess. The kids felt sorry for her and kept giving her apple sauce or pink milk, which only made her barf. She did not get better until Friday morning. Early Friday morning (like 2 am) she crawled into my bed....covered with barf. I left Justin to manage four loads of bedding and messed up clothes from her little episode. I hear poor Gabi also caught our stomach bug, we did not have much of a choice since Jason was gone and Amanda had to work. Yuck

I quite enjoyed shopping for some new clothes. My closet was in dire need of some new threads. My mom style was taking over and leaving me with stained and ratty clothes to wear. I scored several shirts, shorts, and sandals. The best part was shopping alone! Justin was glad I came home. Ha ha.

Justin was quite happy I was home before the kids left for school. That hour before school is madness. He and Josie dropped me off for another Allegiant flight, the cheapest by half the money. Phillip had me tote along Belt a stuffed animal to help document my trip. The airport was nearly deserted in the security area. I love not waiting. I hear Josie was convinced I was staying up in the clouds. Justin managed the food shopping with only a couple hitches. Thank goodness for my new shopping and cooking system, complete with lists. Miekka picked me up in Provo just a couple hours later. We enjoyed delicious food at Bam-Bam's BBQ. Then we went for some more shopping. I still needed a new stretchy pencil skirt since the one I love at home has a broken zipper. I found two (one at a deep discount) at Nordstrom Rack. I've never been to that store before, was quite pleased with my skirts and new sandals. We headed to Ross next then DI in Provo. I enjoyed the quiet, enjoyed time alone with Miekka. The great Lance pizza production was in full gear when we got to the Eagle's nest. Each Friday the James Lance kitchen turns into a pizzeria. Seth, Jacob, and Lia were all involved to make their favorite dinner. It's like a delicious dance. We headed up to Taylorsville for Grandma's viewing. I am so, so grateful I could go. The best part of funerals is seeing all the family you never get to see. I was pleased to see Darrel Jr, who flew in from Japan for the funeral! He won the travel distance award. Mom used Grandma's floral arrangements in her apartment for her casket decor and wreath. We headed back after visiting for an hour.

We left early the next morning for Wellsville, UT. Mom organized a nice luncheon picnic at the tabernacle park starting at 11 am. After lunch a graveside service was held to honor Grandma. It was quite a sight to see all the Baerwaldts gathered together. Darrel presided over the service. Mom gave a lovely talk about what Grandma wanted her grandkids to know, that she loved the savior and served him. She relayed Grandma's beliefs on the plan of salvation. We all had to laugh over singing all the verses of the songs, we mumbled through the unknown verses as best we could. There was a mud puddle next to the casket, it was a continual draw for all the little kids. More than one mom or dad snatched a kid away before the inevitable. We gathered back at the park for birthday cake to celebrate Darrel Sr and Yulia's birthdays. I caught a ride back with Jared. He really, really wanted me to see Alita, Battle Angel. He saw a movie I suggested so it was only fair. I had to laugh (inside) when he started preaching about the merits of home school and the evil school system. I'd love to homeschool but circumstances (my health) are delaying that want. Opinions are easy to have and deliver...the reality is harder than an opinion. I quite enjoyed the drive down. We had a couple hours to burn so we stopped at a couple plant nurseries to find Mom a Mother's day gift. I found a lovely wisteria vine and Ben Franklin peonies for her! The movie was hilarious. I laughed at all the wrong spots and made Jared stare at me in confusion. My sense of humor is much changed now that we have our own 12 year old. When one of the main characters died after losing his arms and legs, I started throwing out torso jokes. What do you call a man with no arms and no legs floating in a pool? Bob....ha ha ha.

By this time I had a deluge of hilarious texts from Justin. "Josie won't eat anything but yogurt. Amelia is pissy. Evelyn is a buttchunk, Phillip can't focus. Everett is good but severely outnumbered" "I can't figure out why you put up with this!" "Today I googled, 'why is my 12 year old a bitch? turns out it's hormones and her brain rewiring'" The kids were constantly fighting! Fighting over corn dogs and microwaves, elbowing in the van, Evelyn so angry she dumped out the DVD case contents, Amelia trying to parent...I about died when Justin texted..."I think it's time to consider permanent birth control, I can't handle any more." Poor guy! Happy Mother's Day!

James whipped up sushi for lunch. Lia was his sous chef, her task to apply the ingredients and roll up the sushi. Delicious! Yum! I went home with a happy belly. I was quite surprised to walk out of the restricted area to find all the family waiting! Got a huge bear hug from everyone at once. Josie beat the crowd. I was expected a curbside pick up. Somehow the parking token fell out of Justin's pocket so he had to pay for an entire day of parking, $45 verses $2. I found the token a couple days later under the front seat. I loved all the cute Mother's day gifts, cards, book marks, hugs, and flowers. Justin grilled up steak for dinner with shrimp cocktail and salad.