Saturday, July 19, 2014

4th of July weekend!

July! This was the first year that I felt Caleb understood what 4th of July is. It isn't a deep understanding, but we're working on understanding what "America" is.

Before we could celebrate we had a bit of a scare. Caleb had a bad cough. This paired with Mollie and William getting over colds, and Josh having a tickle in his throat and myself having a headache, we thought it best to get Caleb in to see the doctor. We also called a mold specialist to check our basement and hired a company to clean our furnace and fumigate and clean our vents. We got a dry filter in the furnace as soon as we could after the flooding but we were nervous that something could be in the air. July 2 we took Caleb to the doctor and they believe it is viral, and it would be a bit early to tell if it is mold related. They gave us some medicine to help open his airways so he didn't have to work so hard to breath. Caleb was so great at the doctor. He was ready to open his mouth, asked to have them check his blood pressure and look in his ears. He liked all the things they did at his 3 year check up, he was ready for it again! haha!

Well we decided that to be safe, I packed up the kids and stayed at my parents Wednesday night and Thursday night. Packing them up, unloading, and taking care of my kids in not my home was a bit stressful. Despite being at my parents, they weren't really there. My stepdad is an interim pastor in Walnut Grove and my mom camped in their trailer this week with him. While I stayed at my parents, Josh worked hard at tearing out the final paneling, which behind he did find some trapped moisture. He sprayed down and cleaned the walls too. Thank goodness I have a wonderful and handy husband! He's such a hard worker. I wish he wasn't worked so hard though.

We came home the morning of July 4th though because we had a tradition to partake in. Our neighborhood in west Mankato has an annual neighborhood parade. It starts at Dotson Park and makes a small loop. There is a police car, color guard, and fire truck that lead the parade. Families, dogs, kids, etc then follow with decorated wagons, bikes, strollers, and pets. People on the side who watch throw candy in to the street for the kids to pick up as they walk the route. It's super cute. It's been going on well over 40 years, and started with just a couple of families almost 60 years ago!

On the way there, Caleb was interviewed for the radio. You can find his adorable interview here: So cute!

We came home and enjoyed some time in our home together again.

Then we went back and had supper at Oma & Grandpa Alms' house with Oma & Grandpa, Uroma & Great Grandpa Harjes, great Grandpa Alms, Lauren, Krista, Garrett & Kayla, and our 5.

After supper Caleb played frisbee golf and other games outside. As it got darker Caleb held his first sparkler! Prior to this he had been a bit scared. Then he caught lightning bugs. He was very excited and he called Papa to tell him and ran to Grandpa to show him!

Grandpa Gene loves fireworks and this year he gave us a great show. Despite the sprinkling rain, we enjoyed some beautiful flashes of flight. Mollie and William were even outside for part of them. Caleb loved them!

June is busy!

June has really been busy!

We traveled to Willmar for our niece, Sami's, graduation party. This was her first time meeting the babies. I didn't really hold Mollie and Will for the next 3 hours. They were being adored by others:) Caleb instead wanted to be snuggled by me and I was happy to give him some undivided attention. 

The family had a good trip there but again on the way home we had some fussing. It wasn't nearly as bad as last long ride, but I can tell babies have a threshold for a car ride. We'll work through it! We'll have to since we drive to Ohio this Thanksgiving.

I took Caleb to Sprouts, a preschool gardening class on June 11. It took place in the community garden. He got to plant some seeds, water plants, and bring a sunflower plant and a picked daisy home. He gave it to Nana when we got home. 

For Father's Day we took Papa and Nana out for lunch at Olive Garden. We have determined that in order to have a successful, worthwhile time at a restaurant we will need to have two other adults with us until the foreseeable future. Ha! Between feeding babies bottles and taking Caleb to the bathroom, we were busy and trying to eat our food when it was hot. Everyone was good, it's just a lot to do.

We came home for a nap and some down time, and then we headed out to Oma and Grandpa's house for supper. My aunt and her family (The Knowles) were there from Ohio. It was great for them to meet Mollie and Will. I wish they lived closer. But luckily we usually get to see them when we go to Ohio for Josh's family visits too. Caleb played the corn hole game and had a blast. Again my main job was babies, but luckily there were plenty of people that wanted to hold and snuggle babies between feedings.

June 16 & 17 I had a reading training so Caleb went to daycare and Nana watched Mollie and Will at our house. The training went well but I have a lot to figure out yet before I teach it in the fall. Pumping during short breaks and lunches was a bit stressful. I hated missing some of the training but there wasn't enough time to pump in our breaks alone. It's difficult to be a working mom!

I got a mom haircut though. I chopped 7 inches off! Feels so good...I love it!

June 18 during a 5am feeding I told Josh he may want to check the basement. It had been raining all night. He came back up and said, "I wasn't expecting that when I went downstairs." Turns out my intuition was correct...10" of water! Josh started a pump but we could hardly keep up with it, let alone get ahead. Things were floating and others had gotten buoyant and then spilled. So frustrating! Water continued to come up our floor drain through Thursday morning. Josh called the city and they pumped our storm sewer. I guess there was a clog. Family came and helped pull things out of the basement. We had a dumpster dropped off and started to fill it. I only cried when drying out papers and picture of my dad. Our dining room became littered with papers I rotated through to dry.

June 19: Josie's prayer meeting.  Josie is leaving for a 6 week mission trip tomorrow. We are so excited for our niece. Her faith and servant heart has led her to a mission trip in Costa Rica. She doesn't speak Spanish or play soccer, but she will embody Jesus and they will see His light through her. We had a prayer meeting tonight with her to send her off.

Friday, the 20th = 4 months old!

This afternoon we drove to Green Isle to meet my cousin and her husband at my grandparents. It was wonderful to see Cheryl and Jack, and have them meet the babies. 

Afterwards was Robby Bakken's, my cousin's son, graduation party. This was the first time Great Aunt Joanne and Great Uncle Wally Bakken met Mollie and William. So glad they got to meet them and share some snuggles and love. It was a beautiful evening. I went myself with all three kids and let's just say...Thank goodness family was there to help. Uncle Garrett and Aunt Kayla were great playmates for Caleb while I fed the babies. When we all got in the car to drive home I was exhausted!

Saturday the 21st was Swedefest at Bernadotte. I decided not to take all three kids somewhere again for a little bit so Caleb got babysat at the Bruns (a family friend) home. Caleb swam three times in their small pool. He had a blast. Meanwhile, my sister Krista and I went to Swedefest with Mollie and William. I wanted to introduce the babies to my mom's friends and my late grandmother's friends. I got a lot of shocked faces from my grandmother's friends when they found out I had twins:) My mom's friends have seen most of the pictures and updates on Facebook, so they were just happy to hold the babies in person.

Sunday Great Uncle Tom and Great Aunt Cheryl came to help with some of the flood clean up. So grateful! I was able to organize some things while Cheryl watched babies and played with Caleb. She went by Cher-Bear and played Monsters with Caleb. He had a ball! Tom wiped down tools so they wouldn't rust. Tedious work, and grateful someone could help out with the work to be done.

The rest of June got us in to a rhythm and we enjoyed some "leisure" days. Nothing all that leisure about three young children, but we were going out and about. Aunt Lauren came the last Saturday of the month to gift 12 hours of help. It was my birthday gift. She was so generous to give that time. We used it too. I had a google doc that was a little daunting but we slayed it! It felt good to get some projects done that had been hanging over my head! Especially with the flood clean up and bedroom changes!

Phew,...goodbye June! Here's to a better July!