August 3, 2016

How is it to raise 5 kids, you ask?

We're living with my in laws while the majority of our things are boxed up waiting to be moved into a storage unit as we build a new house!  It's like a dream come true, though a hard one, because we love the people we're surrounded by here.  Before I go too far, here's the funniest thing that happened today:

I surprised Budge and Limmer when I found them sneakily peeing on the back window of Dan's truck.  I yelled their names and they whipped around so scared that they could barely get their trousers up in time and as he turned, Lim shot Budge in the back of the head. They were so mad.  And embarrassed.  Budge went into total denial mode, and Lim was so embarrassed he wouldn't come in the house for a good while. He may also have been afraid of getting in trouble.  I couldn't stop laughing for way too long.

H has been so good lately too, but with this tinge of stubbornness in her that refuses to retreat when she thinks she's being blamed (for anything) or in trouble.  From knocking the baby down (sweet James) to hitting her brother on the back right in front of me, it's not her fault.  On the other hand, she's declared me her best friend and we've been jumping on the trampoline together, doing nails and (always) practicing makeup.

She's so incredibly sweet, and also gets her heart broken easily, for example when she goes to a friend's house to find out her friend is really hosting a party for another group of girls and she's told "sorry, there's no way you can help with this party".  Left out and feeling rejected for 2 hours, she still wants to play with that same little girl the next day.

Budge is as smart as a whip and loves making new connections.  He's also really competitive, and loves anything gaming.  He will do just about anything to earn time on Minecraft, or grandma's wii.  I think Dan is pretty determined to not have our boys experience gaming on our console, because he grew up without gaming, and later became wrapped up in it.  Never such that he couldn't stop, but he sees a pitfall there and wants to keep our boys out of it.  I agree, but also think of it as inevitable that they will become gamers to a degree.  And I don't want them being left out and unable to relate to their friends.

Limmer feels the same way.  He's so in love with gaming, and will do whatever to earn it.  The difference being, he'll do whatever to earn all sorts of rewards.  Money, candy, gum, the ability to choose the flavor of ice cream for the family.  He's really great that way, and works surprisingly hard.  The boy probably is my best helper right now, and doesn't try to run away at the first mention of chores.  He's doing well in school and also is super smart.  He reads really well, and is gentle and sometimes withdrawn.  I worry sometimes that he's too sullen, but he also has such strong bouts of pure joy (like when James learns to whip his head from side to side telling us no to his veggies) that I think he's going to be just fine.

O is a picaro if there ever was one. The boy screams at the top of his lungs in a piercing pitch just because he can.  I think, though, that we've tamed the firey tongue he gets whenever he's upset.  'stupid, shut up, I hate you" have all been washed out of his mouth so many times now.  He's finally getting the hang of it, though, and when he's really steamed up mad, he'll say "meanie Head" which is totally ok with me.  He is super snuggly and every night wants to sleep in our bed for the warmth of snuggling mom and Dad.  He's darling that way, and comes up with the funniest things to say.  His little mind is always cranking away and sometimes he comes up for air just long enough to ask quesitons like: "Mom, a whale's teeth don't want to bite us, right?"  So cute, and so easily impressed upon.  He is our joy and some days our curse.

Speaking of joy, James is pure sweetness.  That's the nickname I chose for him, despite its feminine associations, because the babe is just pure sweetness.  He fills me up and gives all of us huge doses of happiness and satisfaction at having him in our family.  The kids all want turns holding him, often.  Their joy from him and their satisfaction at teaching him something new is super easy to see, and they try to ge good to him.  He's walking along couches at 8 months and is trying to speak different words.  He says dada but that's about it.  His babble ususally includes a sth, and mamama too.  Sweet observant boy.

I suppose this is it: family ups and downs at its finest.  I never dreamed our family would become my every worry, every grin and every happiness.  I'm so thankful for them and for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that teaches me how to do all this.  And our good parents as well.

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