Sunday, October 2, 2016

Volume XII, issue vi, June 2016

Father, Where Art Thou

On Father's Day this year, as the kids were scarfing down the chocolate chip cookies that Eric had requested for his big day, Peter offered Eric a homemade gift. It consisted of carefully folded paper, decorative string, and precisely placed paper clips.

Peter grinned as Eric looked at it quizzically and explained, "It's art!"

See Better, Chuck

Unbeknownst to Eric and me, while we were lumbering along in our massive Suburban, Charlie chunked a large piece of Rice Krispie Treat on the floor in the back of the car.

As witness to his crime, Ethan told him, "Charlie, that was a bad choice."

Charlie looked completely nonplussed and shrugged, "No it wasn't. Mom didn't see it. Dad didn't see it. So it wasn't bad."

Ethan retorted, "Well. . . I saw it and I'm going to tell Mom and Dad."

Charlie was so shocked that he had no response.

The Tip of the Rexburg

Because of our heavy vacation plans in July, we signed the kids up for swimming lessons in June this year. Unfortunately for all of us (the swimming teacher included), we only have an outdoor pool for lessons and poor little Rexburg doesn't realize it's summer until mid-July. Our poor kids shivered their way through a series of freezing cold lessons with smiles on their blue lips. We were quite relieved when I didn't have to layer them in swimming suits, towels, jackets, and a good pep talk just so they could survive being cute little ice cubes every morning.

Just for Kicks

Eve, Peter, and Marie also got to play soccer on some chilled and soggy fields this month. Because Peter and Marie are close in age, I snuck them onto the same team so that we'd only have a measly 4 games to attend each week.
 When I signed Eve up for soccer this year, I assumed that there would be an even number of girls and boys on her team. When we arrived at her first practice, however, she was the only female in attendance.

My normally feisty daughter surprised me when she looked at me with wide eyes and whispered, "Please don't make me do this."

 I gently nudged her onto the practice field and whispered back, "You'll be glad you did this. Trust me."

By her first game, I proudly watched as my girl tromped down the field with her typical Eve-like confidence and kept up with every single boy on her team. She didn't seem the least bit intimidated by any of them. That's my girl! By her second game, we discovered that there was another girl on her team that happens to be one of Eve's friends, but by then Eve didn't mind too much.

May the Force Be Matthew

It was our nephew, Matthew's birthday this month, and we always try and make him an extra special gift to celebrate. His newly discovered love for all things Star Wars combined with the fact that he's old enough to start building blanket forts gave us the idea to combine these two things that we adore. Once I got started on the personalized glittering sheets and started sewing the bag to hold his supplies, I couldn't stop myself from making some matching PJ's. (When you've got the crafty force with you, it's really hard to control sometimes.)
As proud as I obviously am of my contributions to the birthday boy, I'm even more elated about the cards our kids drew for their little padawan cousin. (For example, coming up with the phrase, "Happy SITH Birthday" for a cousin turning 6. How could I not do a Chewbacca roar of pride?)

Before assembling the items for Matthew's fort kit, our panel of seven very serious product testers helped me make sure that we had included all of the hooks and strings and blankets Matthew would need to build the perfect fort by creating their own ginormous fort. With Caleb at the helm, the kids constructed and reconstructed their blanket fort until it was sturdy enough to satisfy them.
They made it look so fun, that one by one all of us crept inside it and giggled and told stories. When Eric got home, he found the rest of us crammed lovingly inside the fort and he said, "Hey! I want to come inside too!" The kids really wanted all of us to sleep together in the fort, but we told them someone had to protect all of our valuables upstairs.
Our time in the fort really got us into the camping spirit, so despite the wind and threatening rain, we roasted hot dogs and did what we always refer to as "d'Evegnée camping." We could feel intermittent raindrops as we were eating, so we gobbled up the last of our smores right before we had to take cover inside.

One Crazy Summer

Holden caught the travel bug this month and spent three weeks in three different states. He went from an Orchestra competition at Disneyland to Boys' State in Boise to the National Debate Tournament in Salt Lake City. He'd come home late at night at the end of each week just in time to wave both hello and goodbye before washing his clothes so he could repack them and move onto the next big event.

At the National Debate Tournament, he was able to go further than any other Madison High Schooler has before in Lincoln Douglas, and he made it to the top 50 in the country. Needless to say, we got to tell him how proud we were of him in July when he finally woke up after catching up on all of his lost sleep.

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