Monday, March 30

No Black Eyes!

I went into Brooklyn's bedroom with great trepidation this morning, but by early morning light, the discoloration below her eyes is so minimal it's barely noticeable. Her nose is only a little red, and barely swollen. I am so glad!

My first day of spring quarter is today. I'm taking 14 credit hours, and the classes consist of Anatomy and Physiology lecture and lab, Chemistry lecture and lab, Psychology II, and American History. I'm extremely apprehensive about the workload, both for me and for the kids. I'm going to be spending a huge amount of time on campus and away from home, regularly leaving the children in the care of others. I trust implicitly the people I'm leaving them with, but I know it's still a huge burden. I carry a large load of 'mommy guilt', so I'm hoping the kids are well behaved and that the next 10 weeks fly by. I attended the temple on Friday and received a priesthood blessing yesterday in an effort to fill my spiritual tank, but any prayers and positive thoughts you guys could send my way would be greatly appreciated!

Sunday, March 29

Metal Chairs

Brooklyn has had a rough day. We got up this morning and went to church as usual, but just as the first set of meetings was ending and we were getting ready to change rooms and divide into groups, Brooklyn fell. She was perched on a large metal folding chair, and as she reached out for me, she slipped off the front of the chair shew as sitting on, and landed nose-first on the base of the chair in front of her. Her nose immediately started swelling and turning red, and though the blood was minimal, the nurse who attends our church was insistent I get her into the urgent care clinic to check for broken bones. I rapidly made arrangements for my boys to go home with somebody else when the meetings ended, handed my car keys to my good friend Joanna, and we jumped into the car. After a very short wait, we were assured by the doctor on duty that at Brooklyn's age, there is very little bone inside her nose. The cartilage is flexible, and the biggest worry that we have is that she may have deviated her septum, a problem that I will need to watch out for and seek further attention for later. She screamed and screamed when she fell and part of the way to the hospital, and then spent some time silently curled up in my lap, but by the time the doctor came into our room she was happily wandering around the exam room and playing with the table. After a dose of Tylenol and some basic instructions, we were even able to make it back to church in time for the last 20 minutes of the adult lesson.
I am so grateful that she's okay! I'm grateful that in my time of need, my wonderful church group once again surrounded me and offered assistance above and beyond what was needed. I had my choice of people to accompany me, and every faith that wherever my children ended up after the meetings, they would be well taken care of and happy when I returned. Somebody quickly found me some ice, somebody else gave me a hug and spoke reassuringly. This, my friends, is what comes of a mutual faith and devotion to God. I truly, truly believe that there is no greater resource for any sort of help than within the walls and among the people of my church. I love them, so much.
The doctor at the urgent care clinic warned me that Brooklyn will likely be sporting two very lovely black eyes by tomorrow morning. If that is the case, I will get out my camera again and take more pictures to document.

Wednesday, March 25

Erin's Visit

My sister Erin and her daughter Alanna visited this weekend, and we had a fabulous time traipsing around town. I apologize once again for all the photos that will destroy the hard drives of my dial-up friends, but there were too many cute ones not to share.

Kadon, Alanna, Jeremy at the Cincinnati Zoo.

In the aviary.

Erin and Alanna checking out the birds.

Such a bright pink bird!

Kadon and Mommy
My favorite color--immortalized on a beautiful bird!

Fruit Bats

Erin and the kids made a commemorative penny from one of those machines at the zoo.

and spicy!

This polar bear walked up and down, up and down this little ledge the entire time we watched it.
Next door, a different polar bear was swimming in the water. He swam the length of the pool, then did a back flip and swam backward to the other end. At the other end, he flipped forward again, and swam forward facing the the opposite end. He did it over and over again.
Brooklyn, just like the last time Erin was here for the funeral, took to her immediately. I think that Erin is just enough like me to make Brooklyn really comfortable. She certainly sounds like me!

Riding the train at the zoo. I tried to get Brooklyn to sit in my lap for safety reasons, but she refused. I settled for keeping one hand tightly clasped to her clothing the entire time. She had a great time.

I love this face!
This was a baby seal, playing in the water. It's parent was lounging on an island in the middle of the pool. It reminded me very much of my life some days. 'You guys play by yourselves, and I'm just gonna lay here....'
Carousel at the zoo

While Erin was here, it was also Kadon's fourth (sob!) birthday. I gave him the outfit he is wearing first thing in the morning so he could wear it to church, and then let him have this Hot Wheels toy after lunch so he could spend the day playing with it.
My ploy actually backfired, as he then spent the rest of the day begging for his other two gifts.
Because it was such a beautiful day, we broke all the usual Sunday rules. We took the kids to the park, but it was extremely crowded. While there, my sister asked about the go-carting place we had passed on the highway the day before. I hedged for a moment, and then decided that Sunday or no, I wanted to take the kids go-carting.
We had such a fabulous time!
I passed Alanna every time, she wasn't very happy with me!
After go-carting, we went inside and played arcade games for a while. Erin and I discovered that we're both abysmal at air hockey.
We rushed home in time to make dinner, and then only had a few minutes for the rest of Kadon's presents and cupcakes before bed. He picked out chocolate with chocolate chips (my addition) and chocolate frosting. He called them 'double-double, chocolate-chocolate'.
It took him a couple tries, but he got all four candles blown out.
And then was finally able to open his last present.
On Monday afternoon, Erin and Alanna's last day here, we went bowling.
I love Kadon's face in this picture. He was so excited to be able to throw the ball down the lane and hit the pins!
Victory dance!

Brooklyn spent the outing wandering around. Once she escaped my notice, and walked halfway down the bowling lane before I could jump in the gutter and run down there to rescue her.

Granny-bowl style!

The bowling alley was completely empty, so as the time wore on we got sillier and sillier. Here, Kadon and Erin are blowing the bowling ball down the lane, and Jeremy is using the 'force' to knock over pins.

Even Brooklyn got in on the action!