My Grandpa King is my last living grandparent. He turned 90 in July and I'm really thankful I got to be at our family reunion to see him and celebrate his 90th birthday!
He is a tough old man and a great example of hard work. He had one of his legs amputated a few years ago so while we were camping his four wheeler served as his legs. All the little great grandkids got to have a ride with him.
There were a few times during the reunion when Grandpa commented on how blessed he was and how he couldn't believe that everyone at the reunion was there because of him. It was the first reunion without my grandma, but I think even though Grandpa was missing her a lot, he was happy to be there surrounded by all his family. It was pretty touching and a great reminder to me about what this life is all about.
I grew up with three brothers and I never remember it being as loud and crazy with them as it is with my two boys.
The only time it is quiet at our house is when the boys are sleeping and perhaps the first ten minutes into a TV show. After the first ten minutes they lose interest and start bugging each other and the screaming and wrestling begins again.
In fact right now Cameron is crying/screaming in the living room and Jace is yelling, "JUST GO DOWN THE SLIDE! DO IT!" I don't know what the "slide" is. I'm afraid to look.
Over the past few months since I've had not as much energy or patience or I've been sick I've been really picking and choosing what things I care about. Here are the things I don't care about:
Messes. The house is constantly a mess. Toys, books, Legos, crumbs, shoes, and baskets full of clean laundry that will usually never find a drawer before it's used again are everywhere.
Screaming. The boys are always screaming and yelling and crying. Sometimes at each other, sometimes at their toys, and sometimes at me. Sometimes they're happy, sometimes they're mad, and most of the time they're just being obnoxious. I'm pretty impressed with my new found skill of deciphering the actual cries for help from the random-for-no-reason-screaming. We often have hard days on the weekends when Daddy is home all day. He's not as tolerant with the noise as I am. I try to cut him some slack, because before I gave up on having a relatively quiet home I was a little more uptight about it as well. It especially annoys him when instead of making the boys stop yelling I just turn the radio up louder.
Food in the living room. Lots of crumbs and spilled juice means nothing to me when it also means I'll have thirty minutes of peace while they watch Word World while stuffing their faces full of food. On really bad days I think I give them food and snacks all day long in exchange for them being zombies in front of the TV. That's good parenting, right?
But I'm not completely lazy and lame. I do care about some things. Like:
Dirty dishes. Especially because I can smell anything and everything and it's magnified. If the dishes are left in the sink for too long, then when I walk by the sink I gag and almost puke. So I have to do the dishes a lot. Same with the trash. It gets emptied a lot.
Bedtime. But this has always been precious to me. I don't mess around about bedtime. I start counting down after lunch.
And I thinks that's pretty much it. I hope I can start being a better mom again after I'm done being pregnant. And in my defense and maybe to make me feel better, I think the boys are enjoying this new style of parenting a little. They definitely have been using a lot more imaginative play because instead of being annoyed about the mess I encourage them to do whatever they want as long as they're being nice to each other and not whining to me. . . I think there are five or six different forts built daily throughout our house. Sometimes you can't walk through the living room but that's cool, right?
This year at the King reunion in Idaho both the boys were at a great age for Cherry Creek camping. And although I was a little queasy and easily drained, I suprised myself by having a great time as well.
Cherry Creek is a dreamland for little boys. It has everything you could possibly think of for camping fun.
Lots of rocks for throwing into the creek.
A bridge for endless hours of crossing entertainment.
Mountains to climb.
And the creek is perfect for wading and splashing in. Although it is freezing. I remember when I was little thinking that the creek was always super deep and rushed crazy fast, but really not so much. It was perfect for the boys to play in.
Camers is a barefoot boy. He always preferred to have his shoes off.
These buckets provided lots of entertainment too. And also lots of messes.
This is actually a "clean" picture of Jace. For most of the three days of camping he was covered in dirt from head to toe.
Because he made things like "soup"
And then would dump it out right onto his legs. Nice.
There is also nothing quite like Cherry Creek dirt. It's perfect for dumping into your brother's hair.
And for pouring all over yourself.
Here Jace is with a shovel full of dirt and my cousin's cute little girl, Kelsey. How badly do you think Jace wanted to dump that in her hair?
He stood eyeing her for about three minutes with me sending him my most dangerous looks. Finally I couldn't stand the tension and took his shovel away.
Here is Camers with his "flirty shy" smile.
And flirty side way glances at the pretty girls who tried to get him to smile at them.
Some of that is dirt and some of that is cake. Who knows which is which. Jace certainly didn't care.
Cam was not a big fan of the sticky marshmallow on him.
Also on our trip he decided to enter a huge fit throwing phase. He would fling himself to the ground and writhe around like a worm, screaming. Even in the rocks and dirt.
Here I set him off because I wouldn't let him climb up with the hill with Jace and Uncle Randall.
I have no picture for this, but today I took the boys to the pediatrician for both of their well visits. Jace had to get 4 shots. I felt very sorry for the nurse and also any one waiting with their kids in the waiting room.
Jace started screaming like he was being tortured as soon as the nurse walked in and he realized what was about to happen.
I had to hold down with my legs and arms and then he started screaming, "PLEASE, NO! HELP! PLEASE NO! PLEASE HELP HELP HELP HELP! PLEASE STOP!"
With each shot he squealed in pain, each time louder than the last.
When it was over and I let him go and told him they were done, he instantly dried up and said, "Now I can get a sticker. That was just a little bad."