Munchkin Weekend

It was a very busy weekend at the Nichols household. Atchy, I think it was a very busy week- not helped by the fact that i got pretty sick Tues night and stayed in bed all day Weds with a fever. Thurs I was well enough to be back at work, although not operating at 100% of my usual capacity (whatever that is). Thurs night was a blast- girls night out with Anne, Alexis, and Cora to see the movie Bella, which I really enjoyed. The company and actually going out with my girlfriends was the best part, of course.

Friday was another busy day at work and then the costume party at the Veens. It was quite a crowd and a good time was had by all. I was Larry the Cucumber, but had some issues with my costume- and then took it off because i was way too hot and was trying to feed a toddler. Hard to exactly describe the party- there were lots of munchkins running around in very cute costumes, pizza dinner, me holding a toddler who was a bit overwhelmed at all of it and just wanted to eat all night, and lots of visiting. Great fun. Its amazing what a happens with a few friends in a couple short years.

After the party, I loaded the Veen’s van full of toddlers and bags and we headed for home. Ben and Ellie were coming for the weekend so their parents could go on retreat, and Sarah’s parents had left for CA that morning so she’d spent the day at the Veens and was coming home with me. Anyway, it was late and I knew a meltdown was pending, so we sang songs as we drove home and I prayed for a smooth bedtime. Naturally, once we arrived, they were all kind of excited to be there, check out the dogs, the toys, the kids books, etc. So we read some stories and settled down again before attempting bed. Sarah went down great in Kara’s room, a few minutes of crying and she was out. Ben was sleeping in my bed and Ellie in the pack and play in my room. They both went down without too much fuss too, and its a good thing since it was 10.00 by the time we said prayers and got in bed. I wasn’t far behind them, although i spent a few minutes kid-proofing and straightening up the house before collapsing on the couch.

Saturday began much too early with the BOC barking like crazy before 7 am. I stumbled to the front door to find Fiona there, just as my dad broke in through the garage. yeah, newsflash, you can’t sneak into a house with two large dogs, even if i wasn’t sleeping on the couch. Fiona and I dozed on the couches again until Ben came down the stairs around 7.30. He and Ellie were up and ready for the day. So we read books, got breakfast, and began the day. Sarah joined us around 9.30 and had her breakfast. Then we put the kiddos, sandwiches, sippy cups, my wagon, etc into the van and headed for the petting farm.

It was a beautiful fall day with the sun shining, a great day for the farm. The kids were thrilled (and a bit terrified at times) by all the animals. My favorites were the tiny calves in the barn, probably stand about 2.5 feet tall, absolutely beautiful little creatures, who like to lick with their scratchy tongues. and this one little baby pigmy goat that kept jumping out of the pen and running around the barn… seriously cute little thing. Ben got to hold it and was thrilled. the girls liked to pet it. At one point the cows in the barn were mooing and the goats all bleating to be fed, Sarah thought that was great- she started mooing right along with them, grinning from ear to ear, and squealing with delight. We wandered all over the farm, enjoying all the animals, and the gorgeous day. After a nice hayride, we had our picnic lunch, wandered a bit more, and then started loading tired kids back into the van. Note: Someday i’m going to have my own farm.

Naps are great. Ben needed some encouragement, so i laid in bed with him for a few minutes- he just wanted to chat. I told him we could make brownies when we got up from nap, so we should really get some sleep. He whispered, “Okay Aunt Reenie, you can dream about tigers.” I whispered back, “thanks Ben, you can dream about brownies.” Ben: “And Lions too.” Okay, sleep now, please? I wanted a nap so badly, but decided to scoop and mow the yard while i had the chance, especially since it had been a couple weeks and looked like a jungle. Naturally I got done with that and got to flop on the couch for half an hour before they started waking up. Its wierd coming off being sick- i feel sort of debilitated and like i just don’t have the energy to get everything I want to done… sigh…

We had homemade mac and cheese for dinner. Ben at 7 platefulls, i think someone is growing. Sarah wasn’t far behind with 3 big servings. Fiona went out to see Kara’s play, so it was just me and the munchkins. More playing before bed, part of a Veggie Tales, and then everyone to bed. Then i folded laundry and watched a movie. An hour later, after all had been quiet upstairs, Ben shows up all smiles. “Hi Aunt Reenie” He cuddles up next to me on the couch for the movie. I looked at him, “Um, why are you down here?” All smiles again, “Cuz I’m awake and happy!!” So stinking cute, but i wasn’t born yesterday, I know this tactic. I turned off the tv, hugged him, and insisted we go potty and head back upstairs, just as happy as we’d come and impressed upon him that he was to keep his head on the pillow and go to sleep.

Sunday morning was similar to Saturday, even with the time change. Ben and Ellie were up at 7 and Sarah slept until 9.30. Waffles for breakfast, play time, lots of diapers, and getting everyone ready for Mass. 11.15 Mass went very well considering- we only had one emergency exit and that was for Ben to poop and not because someone was screaming. Back home again had lunch, kids took naps, Reenie went to Kara’s play while Fiona and Uncle D held down the fort at home. Got home in enough time to grab dinner and Sarah and run out to LT. (The Veens had come to get their kids while I was gone.) Sarah helped me sacristan for Mass, and then we cleaned up the church together before going home. Note to self: cleaning up the church with a toddler on hip isn’t a fast process, particularly carrying those big candlesticks. By the time we got home, she was exhausted and ready for bed (although very chipper) and so was I. Sarah went home early Monday morning, and Reenie went back to normal life at the office.

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