March 17, 2019

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  • Last night Robby asked me if I had set my alarm. Indeed I had and not too surprisingly, at some point in the morning I had even turned off my alarm. I woke right up when I finally did wake up. I am not sure what woke me up, but it is a good thing that I did wake up when I did! 
  • We still had plenty of time to get ourselves ready and make it to church on time. Campbell and Keaton had already laid out their clothes for today to make sure that they remembered their green for St. Patrick's Day.
  • We saw all of the grands before big church. On the way to church this morning, Whitman was complaining and Robby told the boy that he was going to sign him up for "Big Church Summer Camp." 
  • We had lunch at Grannymom's house. After we ate, the kids enjoyed the nice weather outside and played until we left. We took Cash with us and stopped at Third Realm on the way home. The kids acted like they were pretty tired today-maybe since they haven't been to Third Realm lately, they are out of shape.
  • After jumping, we all came home. Robby and I went to work on the laundry while the kids played some more. I think that they played a bit outside before coming in. Cash was with us so they all enjoyed playing with him.
  • The laundry took Robby and I a good little bit. It was at least 3 days worth of laundry to fold. I often see people on the computer posting about their mounds of laundry when they have one or two kids. I would like to smack those people over the head. But that wouldn't be nice! 
  • Once we finished the laundry, we did work on our grocery list for a bit. We then took Cashy home to his house. Afterwards, we ate at Popeyes for our supper. We did leave Reagan and Graham at home, so we brought them supper to eat at home. 
  • We also ran to the grocery store for a little bit. Of course a little bit often turns into a buggy full. Campbell and Anderson enjoyed ringing up all of my groceries for me. Once we made it home, everyone had their showers while Reagan and Graham ate. Then it was time for bed for the crew-I am sure that everyone will sleep in for the start of their spring break tomorrow. (Not really!)

March 16, 2019-Branson Trip 1

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I do believe that hotel sleeping is the best sleeping. Now Anderson told us last night that he didn't like hotel beds. I thought that Robby was going to throw him out of the room. Seriously though, we were both in disbelief at how our child could not like hotel beds-even motel beds.

I guess that just means that the kids' beds are much better than ours. Maybe we love hotel sleeping so much because our bed is pretty sad. If you do remember, the salesperson who sold us our mattress said that it was a good choice for a kid's bed. She quickly changed her story when we told her our budget, and then she highly suggested the kid's bed mattress for us!

I got a bit of track, didn't I? Back to this morning, we slept in a little bit. Then we rushed around to get to breakfast before it closed. We all went together and then ran back to our room to load up and leave. The kids tickle me when we check out of a hotel-it seems that everyone helps check to make sure that we don't leave anything. 

Everyone did help us load up the van, but since we were in a motel there was lots of excitement about pitching our bags from the second floor down to the van below. I am not so sure why this excited the kids so. Robby eventually put a stop to it when he saw his computer backpack hanging over the edge!

From the hotel, we headed on to our final stop in Branson-The Coleman Store. We are pretty consistent at that store. We walk around-touching everything. The kids get in tents, lay on cots and sit in chairs. Then we also almost always buy an ice chest and today was not different. Today's ice chest was bought to store water bottles on a trip. 

Then we headed on towards home. We stopped at our normal rest stop that we always do. It was after the curves so Keaton's tummy was giving her problems. While everyone else ran to go to the bathroom, Keaton and I walked around outside. There was a river behind the gas station so we looked at it for a bit. As soon as she is distracted, she usually perks right up and did today. We then met up with the others in the bathroom to meet up with some folks from home heading to Branson.

We made it to Greenbrier before eating. We stopped at Steak n Shake for our late lunch. The meals were pretty inexpensive so we even had shakes for dessert. They were pretty good-I try to avoid shakes but still had my share as we passed the 3 around taking one bite at a time.

From there, it didn't take too long at all until we were home. Everyone helped unload the car and put away all of our stuff. The neighbors were out so the kids headed out to play and for the most part, they stayed out until Robby called them home for supper.

We heated up all of our leftovers around 7, and then picked up the Wilsons to try out Hurts. Unfortunately, by the time that we finally made it all the way across town, we decided that the line might just be too long to wait. Since there is really no other dessert place around, we ended up at Krispy Kreme. 

We brought our donuts back to eat and it didn't take long for us to demolish 2 dozen donuts. The kids then had some extra energy and ended up back outside playing with the neighbors who were surprisingly still out. 

Once the Wilsons headed home, it was shower time and bedtime for the crew. It was well after 10 before everyone finally laid down here. I think that my crew was pretty tired-or at least I am!

March 15, 2019-Branson Trip 1

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Aw, hotel sleeping is pretty good. Though Robby couldn't get to sleep last night and a few times during the evening, I was hot or I was cold. So I would have to kick the covers off or move closer to Robby, but when we started to stir at 7, we were all super rested.

The boys in the room with us were the first to stir. When they saw that it was 7, they went to get their ipads and then sat with their heads under the cover and played until more people were awake. Whitman woke up and climbed in the bed between Robby and me. I think that he still thought that it was night time because it was so dark outside still.

Soon everyone was dressed and headed out to go and get breakfast. Well, everyone but Reagan, Whitman and I. Reagan and I were still getting ready and Whitman didn't care. Anderson and Graham brought Whitman back breakfast, and then Reagan and I went to grab something to eat. They didn't have a large selection but it was plenty because Keaton had her toast, Robby had his gravy and I had my bagel.

The sun was blaring into our room every time that we opened the door this morning. We assumed that was a sign that it would be warm even though we knew that it was about 10 degrees cooler today. There was still some wind so most of the day was spent with our hats and gloves on. In the afternoon, it did warm up but by the time we left again, we were again getting chilly. Overall, the weather could have been much cooler so they day was actually pretty pleasant. We are pretty sunburned and windburned tonight!

The park opened at 9:30 and we were there before. Many of the rides can't open until it is a certain degrees so the first few hours of our park time was spent walking from here to there looking for a ride. We were able to do Fire in the Hole and the Flooded Mine.

By lunch time more rides started opening. It was crowded but not too bad. Keaton and Campbell are such daredevils. Keaton can ride a few of the big roller coasters-well, she snuck by on them. She is probably an inch to short but with her hat and hair in a bun she passed. She loved every single ride that she went on. And Campbell could keep riding and riding without every stopping.

We were with the Heltz all of the day long. They had come down with just Alyssa to celebrate her 13th birthday. As they were buying their food, Robby did buy us fries to supplement our lunch. Along with our fries we had cracker packages, granola bars and Robby had cut up some sausage that we ate along with some crackers. 

I guess that Whitman's breakfast had been light because he ate a package of crackers, at least 4 slices of Robby's sausage with crackers, a bag of gummies and a a muffin that we had thrown in Robby's bag that he didn't eat at breakfast. He was about to dig into a package of cookies, but it was time to start walking. We did let him have his cookies the next time that we stopped to wait on the big kids to ride a ride. 

We covered the park about a zillion times to day. My watch says that I walked 19 thousand steps today and I am sure that it was at least that. We didn't think that we woulds stay at the park all day long, but since we were in no hurry the day was pleasant.

Some of the kids would have been content coming back to the hotel to eat some more bbq, but instead we opted to try a new restaurant. We picked Falls Creek-Robby had seen that they had catfish and that sounded good to him. Robby and I usually split a meal but the largest catfish plate they had was 2 fillets.

He thought that we should order our own, so we each were brought a plate with a baked potato, another side and 2 catfish fillets. However, the fillets were the size of my computer keyboard. Seriously, they were as long as my head. I couldn't eat all of one. It was laughable at how large they were. And really none of us needed anything to else after the rolls.

We had seen that the sign said that they had throwed rolls. The kids loved the rolls at Lamberts-even more than the rolls, they loved catching the rolls. When I went in to find out the wait, they were even throwing rolls in the entry way. I was eating a roll as I went out to tell Robby and the kids that there wasn't a wait. The place was actually huge, so there was no need to worry about a wait at all.

By the time we had our food, we were all working on our third roll. I did let the kids get one more while we were eating, just so we could put it in our take home box. Yes, I know. I have become my momma. But seriously, we had 2 and a half catfish fillets to take home. They alone nearly filled up my box. If I had a ruler, I would take a picture of them so you could see and really believe me about how big they were.

After eating, we headed back to the hotel. Only probably about having a big family in a hotel room is the lack of bathrooms. Both boys needed to use the restroom so that slowed us down on our showering. We did catch up though and soon most everyone was showered. 

Once most folks had their showers, Robby pulled out his hair trimmers. Anderson had his hair cut first, followed by Whitman and then Robby. Whitman was not too sure about getting his hair cut. He told Robby, "Seriously? We are in a hotel." He continued to tell Robby that we were messing up a hotel. Robby assured him that he would clean it all up. 

After hair was cut and showers were finished, we tired to finish off our ice cream. We still have quite a bit left but I don't think that we can get it home. We will probably pass out ice cream sandwiches at some point during the morning!

March 14, 2019-Branson Trip 1

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While I was hitting snooze on my alarm this morning, Graham came in to our room. I guess he didn't know what kind of sound it was. Then he asked me if I was going to get up. I politely reminded him that of course I was going to get up, but I always hit snooze for 45 minutes! Well, almost! When I did wake up though, Graham had already done his school work and placed it in the floor right in front of our door.

I made a few trips around waking people up, telling people to start their school work, checking things, reminding people to brush their teeth and put away their laundry. Probably by the time that we left the house, I had nearly 5 thousand steps just walking around the house. I did have time to take my shower and fold the last little bit of the laundry. 

By the time that we left this morning, I had given Keaton her medicine and put three different creams on her little arms. They are looking a bit better, and I think that they will even improve more as the antibiotic starts working. We even lotioned up again while we were on the road. I plan on getting those arms better!

We had talked about leaving around 10, but never really rushed. So it was about 10:15 when we finally pulled out of the driveway. We started our trek to Branson. We stopped once for the potty and once for lunch at Arbys. For some reason, the drive up seemed a little bit long to Robby. He did have to battle quite a few construction barrels along with some crazy wind. 

We weren't too sure if we were going to go to Silver Dollar City today or not, but decided that we might as well. We knew the park closed at 6 tonight, but since we arrived around 2:30, we had plenty of time to play. We were pretty surprised at the full parking lot though.

Our first stop in the park was the bathroom, as it usually is. After the drive and the walk up to the park, I was the one that needed to stop in the bathroom. Then we headed on towards Fire in the Hole. A few of the big roller coasters had long waits but the kids did go on Wild Fire. Everyone rode Thunderation twice. This ride is Whitman's favorite.

We stopped for a bit to eat a snack and then as soon as we left our snack spot, Robby handed Reagan money to go and buy a funnel cake. Even Graham said, "did we just have a snack?" We still all devoured that funnel cake though like we hadn't eaten in a few days. It was pretty perfect. Now Anderson wants me to try to figure out how to make funnel cakes at home. Wonder if the instant pot can do that?

We rode the gun ride and walked down the one of the kiddie areas. Campbell, Keaton and Whitman rode on the little roller coaster. It was the longest wait that we had, and it was also the coldest that we were waiting on that ride. Today was 10 degrees warmer than it should be tomorrow, but today the wind was blowing like crazy. We all had on hat and gloves today, and tomorrow hopefully everyone has packed a bit warmer clothes. I will have a whole other layer to wear tomorrow. We did enough today though that if we leave early tomorrow, we will have seen and done it all.

Once we left the park, we drove right to our motel. We have stayed here before but it has been a very long time. We have one room that is larger than a regular motel room, plus there is a kitchen and a whole other bedroom. It is a huge place which fits us perfectly. There is a bed for everyone so I can see us staying here a few more times in the future. 

We all found a few spots on the beds and vegged out for a little bit while Robby did some work. Then we worked on our supper. We had brought bbq, chips and corn. It didn't take long for us to heat everything up. I think that everyone was pretty hungry since we ate a bit over a pound of meat, all the corn and a bag of chips. 

After everything was cleaned up, we then headed to go and find some dessert somewhere in Branson. We headed towards Hurts Donuts but decided that we might just should save Hurts for the new one at home. So we ended up at Walmart in the ice cream section. We bought a few treats along with an atlas. We just need to start keeping one in the car because Robby and I really like to plan our next trip or two or three while we are in the car. We can do it all on the phones but it is just a bit easier to be able to see things on the map.

There was pretty much no one on the strip tonight so it didn't take us long to get back to the hotel at all. We then pulled out the bowls and scooped up the ice cream for everyone. I think that everyone enjoyed the treat-Keaton was really the only one that wanted Hurts so she did get to pick her favorite kind of ice cream-mint.

We watched some tv and played on all of our devices until it was finally time for everyone to head to bed. It was a pretty great day.

March 13, 2019

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  • Another rainy morning and another day that only my big boys were awake at 8. I made the loop waking everyone-it took me a few loops around to finally get the girls stirring. When we had about 5 minutes until it was time that we left, I again made my loop downstairs telling people to put their dishes up, brush their teeth and get what they needed. I was pretty shocked to see that Anderson was still in his pjs! He said, "you never told me to put on my clothes." Gracious me!
  • We finished our book on tape this morning, and then headed into Bible study. Robby again picked up Keaton for her dermatology appointment. At some point, her eczema has turned into something else-possibly this was the cause for it to become so bad and for it to start spreading down her arms and now on her tummy.
  • That does mean that she will have to stop using the new testing drug which is fine with us. Her arms had really taken a turn for the worse the last few days and were driving her crazy itching. The doctor called her in a prescription so she is having to drink some medicine each day for the next 10 days. 
  • We immediately started putting lotions, creams and potions on her arms. They won't get truly better until the medicine takes effect, but hopefully once that happens we can kick her eczema goodbye too. Even after one dose of antibiotics and one good rub down with cream, they were already starting to look better. They are still really, really red though but hopefully not as itchy. 
  • She still has to go back to the study one more time so they can make sure that her little arms are indeed getting better. More than likely she will not get compensated for the whole study, but she will still get quite a bit of money-enough to buy what she wants to buy.
  • After her appointment, Keaton met us at Third Realm. This is our 23rd time to visit, and that place was packed with homeschoolers. Not really packed, but usually when we come during the day our group is the only ones. There were even some Amish kids there today!
  • When we had finished jumping, we ran to pick up Keaton's medicine and then came home to start dosing her up. Kennedy came home with us so we didn't really see much of Reagan and her until supper time. 
  • I did read to Whitman and had everyone do some more packing. You would laugh if you saw all of the stuff that we have to take on a trip. It really doesn't matter if we are gone for 30 days or 3 days-there is still so much stuff of pack. 
  • For supper, we had baked potatoes, biscuits and hamburgers (Robby picked up our Dairy Queen burgers today-the kids don't like the Dairy Queen buns so we buy the double hamburgers, bring them home and when we do eat them, we now have 6 burgers instead of 3! This thrills my soul and probably mortifies the kids. When they are old, they will tell their children about how cheap their parents were.)
  • On our way out of the door, Anderson decided that he didn't feel good. He said that his stomach hurt, and he did inhale his food at supper. We weren't too sure what was going on, so we did let him stay home. Robby did tell him that he couldn't do electronics though so he did nap, read and even played some. I am not too sure if he was really sick or if he just didn't want to go. He is a pretty tenderhearted kid so I do worry about him. 
  • By the time that rest of us made it back home-my shoes were still wet from our trip to the library before church. Whitman was acting crazy in the car so I made him come in with me. However I was not thinking about the crazy rain that was happening at the time so we were both pretty soaked by the time we made it back to the car. 
  • Also by the time we made it home, Anderson seemed to be in good spirits. He had a snack with the rest of us but did later say he still felt tired. Possibly time change has gotten to him. I think it has gotten to me too!
  • After our snack, the kids had a few minutes to just play on their devices before it was time for bed. Wednesdays are a pretty long day!

March 12, 2019

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  • Campbell and Graham were both awake this morning. Campbell was already working on her school work as my alarm was ringing. I then made sure that everyone was awake, and we moved to my bedroom to do our morning reading.
  • After we read, everyone had one school thing to do. I guess Anderson and Graham were not expecting for me to pick the hardest school thing, but of course I did. They both had writing and both were overwhelmed. I tried to stay calm, but Graham seemed like he didn't want to do any work and Anderson decided he didn't understand and would barely try. I helped both of them and they did finally finish in time to work on their chores.
  • Meanwhile, Campbell was being a sweet sister and was helping make the boys beds while they were still finishing their school work. Everyone was finished, and the house was straight when our homeschool buddies started arriving.
  • I was a bit bummed this morning when I saw that it was still raining. I really wanted for the kids to be able to play outside much of the day. It did however stop so they were able to play out which made things nice. When Whitman was playing out, he found himself some mud puddles to jump in and was wet and muddy when he came back inside. I actually just carried him to the shower!
  • I had so much fun at our homeschool day today. Nitzia did it all-maybe that is why I enjoyed it so much! First, we sat everyone down and she talked all about the history of the pinata. Then she showed everyone how to make one. The kids divided themselves up and soon got to work. 
  • Don't be surprised, but Reagan did little on the making of her pinata. She would have died if she would have had to stick her hand in the glue like everyone else. She made sure that she helped with the newspaper instead of the glue. 
  • Anderson was just like Reagan and did not touch his pinata much at all. Whitman was so excited to be Graham's partner. After he heard that the glue would get on your clothes, he was quick to stand up and start backing out of the kitchen. While I was helping the others, he did play with the balloons in the living room. When I did clean my hands, I was able to get him to at least tear some newspapers.
  • I am thankful that Campbell and Keaton went right to work on their pinatas. It was no small task and they did really well. Once the pinatas were done, I hung them in my attic to dry. Hopefully, they will dry well. While I was hanging pinatas, the moms wrapped up the table cloths covering the floor and started to prepare for the tortilla making.
  • Nitza told everyone about corn tortillas and how to make them. Then she had dough and tortilla presses for the kids to make their own. Since there were lots and lots of hands, we made a batch to eat and let the kids just practice making theirs. 
  • Then we had our lunch-homemade corn tortillas, guacamole, salsa, pineapple, salsa, black beans, beef, chicken, sour cream, limes, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, another type of cheese, and even cheese dip. The moms had brought all of the food and it was simply delicious. Maybe I was just hungry! But the kids did keep coming back for more food. 
  • I did make all of my kids except for Keaton try to corn tortillas. I do think that they mostly liked them. Obviously, they are not as good as a flour tortillas but when we smeared enough butter on them, everyone liked them.
  • Everyone stayed until about 2. It didn't take too long for us to clean up the house. So by 2:45ish, I was sitting on the couch. Whitman came to ask me to spell something on his ipad, and soon I was sound asleep cuddled up to him. He wasn't asleep but was sure a perfect pillow for me. 
  • I only stirred when my alarm went off reminding me to put the potatoes in the oven for our baked potatoes tonight. I got up and did that but soon ended back on the couch. I eventually did some packing as well as reading to Whitman. 
  • The kids are all in awe of the new tvs. Not really new tvs but satellites. I believe that we had most of the same channels before but it is like they have just discovered them. They are watching all of the same shows that we watch whenever we are at a hotel. Now, on a sad note-my Hallmark Movies and Mysteries channel isn't in our package. I had planned to get back on the treadmill and watch some of these movies but now I am just destined to get chubby!
  • The neighbors that are never out were out this evening. I had supper ready about an hour and a half before the kids finally came in. We ate and then everyone worked on an evening list that I had made out for them. 
  • They had to shower, do some packing and prepare their lunch for tomorrow. It was a pretty busy evening. The kids weren't so busy that they forgot to ask for a snack though. I am not sure why they would need a snack right after eating supper, but we still passed one out though!

March 11, 2019

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  • I think that Time Change might have hit me harder than the kids. It sure didn't bother Graham at all because he was up and playing his ipad before anyone else in this house had even stepped out of the bed!
  • I woke everyone else up and by some miracle, we all had our breakfasts and were in my bedroom, reading all before 8:15. We read a few books and even finished a few. After a run to the library this afternoon, we only have 81 books checked out. I am working on getting that number down a little bit.
  • The kid started on their school around 9. Keaton is so close to finishing her spelling, and that will make me happy, happy. Now if I could just get my Whitman to finish his spelling. The boy can sure read, but he can't spell at all. We have been working hard, but his attention span and my patience only lasts for about 5-7 words a day.
  • Anderson worked and finished his school work before lunch time. We ate our lunch and then did a few chores. Tomorrow is homeschool day here with all of our buddies so we had to do a little bit of extra cleaning. 
  • Once we finished all of that, we worked on our afternoon reading and also finished another Jr. Ranger book. We are approaching 50 Jr. Ranger badges! Afterwards, we had a bit of free time before meeting all of our buddies at Third Realm. Yep, it was our 8th day in a row. Just FYI, I do not plan on going there tomorrow.
  • After we made it home, I worked on pulling out Whitman's school for after Spring break. Then Robby and I started on supper. We made fajitas for everyone and used queso fresco on our tortillas. I think that it was a hit because there was no chicken to save.
  • The evening eventually ended with some ice cream for the kids while we watched a few tv shows. Whitman was busy drawing cards and pictures. I promise you that he went through 15 pieces of paper tonight!

March 10, 2019

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  • Despite time change, everyone woke up fairly well this morning. Robby was actually up and dressed before I rolled out of bed. My first stops were waking up the boys and then the girls since none of them were awake. 
  • When I went in the boys room, I saw Graham and Whitman sound asleep right by each other in the middle of the floor. They were the cutest things ever. I thought about going downstairs to grab my camera, but that was all the way down the stairs so I didn't do that, I just went ahead and put toothpaste on all of the toothbrushes.
  • Right before we left for church, Keaton told me that her stomach hurt. By the time we were in the car, she was crying saying that her stomach still hurt. I even thought she looked a bit pale to me. She even went to sleep on the way to church. She does have such a tender tummy, but we would have to assume that she was somehow worried about singing in church. 
  • I told her that I would go upstairs with her and she didn't have to sing if she didn't want to but we needed to go and watch Campbell. I was pretty sure she would get better since she usually perks up quickly after her tummy does hurt. Now, I was also prepared and had a walmart bag read to go for her in my bag. 
  • After a bit of sitting with a bunch of girls, Keaton was soon fine. When the choir leader asked everyone to sit on their benches, she told me she was fine and left with her buddies. I walked over with the choir kiddos and watched Campbell and Keaton sing. They did great-well, I am sure that Campbell really did great, but I was too busy watching Keaton for any signs that she was about to hurl!
  • Once the girls finished singing, we headed back downstairs to our service. Then we had Sunday school before heading to Nonna and Pops' house for lunch. Instead of lunch though we had breakfast. Nonna and Pops had made a huge breakfast spread. There was tons of different options and everyone left full.
  • Once we left their house, we came home for just a little bit. I did have about a 15 minute nap before leaving to meet Robby. He had left a few minutes earlier to take Cash's trailer back, pick Cash up and meet me at Third Realm. 
  • You would think that my crew would balk at going there 7 days in a row, however they didn't complain at all. It did help that Cash was going with them today. Anderson and Whitman have been playing Minecraft lately so they have become pretty good buds. When they were leaving, Whitman said that he was going to ask Anderson if he could stay with him the whole time.
  • I had to go back to church for a meeting while Robby finished up the jumping. Reagan's life group was cancelled since quite a few kiddos couldn't come. By the time that I made it home, Robby and Reagan were making cookie dough for a snack and everyone had already taken their showers.
  • We eventually had supper and then topped our supper off with lots of cookie dough. We are still getting used to our new tv system so it took a bit to find a few shows to watch but we were able to watch a few different shows so that was a plus. I don't think that the kids were too tired at bedtime tonight since time change, but that didn't matter to me!

March 9, 2019

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  • It was after 8 when I woke up today. That was when Whitman burst into our room, climbed between us and told us that he had a "scary nightmare." I think that since it was so dark outside, he thought that he wasn't yet supposed to be up. He then stayed in our bed for quite a while until he heard Anderson milling around downstairs.
  • The weather continued to get darker so I sure was not getting out of bed. Keaton then joined us and stayed with us through the storm. There was a point that that the rain was so hard that we could not see the trees outside. Something hit the window, a stick or something, and Robby just jumped. We are always expected to lose a tree whenever there is a storm. 
  • We did finally get up to head to Third Realm. While we were getting everyone ready, the sirens were going off for another area in the county. Of course, I did ask Anderson and Reagan if they did hear the sirens or if they thought that they might should be concerned. I guess they trust that we will tell them if there is something wrong because they were oblivious.
  • I ran to pick up Graham while everyone one else piled in Robby's car to go and pick up Campbell. The kids do like Robby's car better. Someone always gets to sit up front so they all like that and I do believe that I have a few folks that are a wee bit embarrassed of my car.
  • We met up at Third Realm and yes, I have been there 6 times this week. I am actually thinking of getting a part time job there. Seriously, I have been there more this week than I have been at church-well, probably not, but almost. The kids still enjoy it-today they were playing dodge ball and had a worker refereeing it so the boys loved that.
  • On the way home, we picked up some chicken wings at Sonic. There was a sale today and surprisingly most everyone loved them. Keaton and Whitman were not fans, but our non meat eater, Anderson, asked to finish them off for supper.
  • Our afternoon was spent watching the worker man put the dish on the house (back, thankfully) and fix all of the tvs. Things seem to be working well and everything is working right this second. 
  • We had leftovers and hot dogs for supper tonight. Everyone had their showers and then Robby and I started working on moving our massive tv unit into the exact right spot. Things do look better in our room now since the couch doesn't just looked shoved up against the wall. It took us all evening long because he had to redo all of the cords. (Now he still has to redo all of the cords in the bonus room, but that is a project for another day.)
  • For some reason the kids, especially Keaton, were wound up tonight. That didn't make all of our reorganizing very easy, but we did survive...and so did the kids. We finished after putting everyone in bed-unfortunately, we didn't get anyone in bed earlier than usual tonight so there will be lots of tired kiddos on the Dennie pew during time change Sunday.

March 8, 2019

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  • School went as expected this morning. Since we had already finished our spelling yesterday, my work was a lot lighter today. Campbell and Anderson both did have writing assignments that required a bit of extra work from me. I was however to pull out most everyone's school for next week before we did eat our lunch.
  • Campbell left first this morning to got Grannymom and Grandpa's house for the evening. She did most of her school work last night so she would be able to finish early today. After she did finish her work, she went right to work on packing her bags. I am not too sure on how long she plans on staying, but she could probably stay a week or two with everything that she brought.
  • Graham left next with Nonna and Pops. He also had a bag full. Most of his extra stuff was for basketball-shorts and shoes. He was pretty excited about going to their house and even ate at his favorite restaurant, Chick Fil A.
  • Around one, I finally called everyone down for lunch. I let them make their own and then eat where ever they would like. I think that they enjoyed a break from having to listen to me read as they ate.
  • Soon it was time to meet the buddies at Third Realm. We have been there 5 days this week. I even did some work on my chart today so I could better keep up with our jumping visits better. Everyone was pretty sweaty after we came in from jumping. 
  • We hadn't been home for long when the neighbor came out wanting to play so Keaton and Whitman headed out with him. When they came back in, they were soaking wet. I am not sure what they did outside, but it still must be incredibly wet.
  • They had showers as Robby and I were preparing to take Anderson to basketball. As soon as we were about to leave, we received at text saying that basketball was cancelled. So Robby and I still left to go out and eat by ourselves. On our way home, we stopped to buy everyone supper-2 requested Arbys (Keaton and Anderson), 1 had Tropical Smoothie (Reagan) and one child just asked for a grilled cheese (Whitman).
  • As they ate, I worked on baking the cookies that Keaton had made earlier in the week. Unfortunately, when you leave cookie dough in the fridge, it just disappears. I can say that I have not been the one eating it this week. I usually do, but I have a stash of mint m&ms that I am working on right now.
  • We ate our cookies as we watched some of the Hogs baseball game with Shannon. She came over for a bit while her crew was out and about tonight. Once she left, we watched some basketball before calling it a night and sending the people to bed!

March 7, 2019

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  • I have always loved Thursdays and today was a no different. It was even raining to make our morning a bit more pleasant-I think the kids are always calmer during the rain. Robby said that it looked like a buffet when he walked through my bedroom on his way to work. 
  • The kids ate as we read. Then they started on their school for the day. The day seemed to go fairly fast. At one point, Campbell even commented that I was finishing quickly today. I did finish cleaning up my piles and area before lunch.
  • I did print out the kids school for next week today. It does seem that we are only going to get one day of school in and just a little bit on two other days. I will say that I get a bit excited each time I look at their school right now, because every single week someone has finished something. Don't get me wrong, my big 3 will be working on their writing until the end of May but things are getting easier for them (and me) each week.
  • Everyone ate their lunch and then started on chores. We did some more reading before it was time to load up to head to PE. All of our buddies were there too and most of the kiddos said that Third Realm today was the best part of their day. 
  • Once we made it home, we had a bit of time before Robby came home and we started on our supper. Robby made biscuits and gravy. I had taco soup. Some folks had chicken nuggets. Some had ham and cheese croissant and even one had a hamburger. If you hadn't guessed already, it was clean out the fridge night. 
  • For dessert, we again had leftovers-sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, brownies and banana bread that I had made this afternoon for Graham. As we waited for bedtime, we watched a few game shows until it was time to for bed for this crew.

March 6, 2019

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  • Wednesday morning here and everyone was asleep except the two big boys. I woke up the rest of the gang and started trying to get them moving. I did haul Whitman down the stairs which caused me to have to sit down on the side of the bed and catch my breath! 
  • As I helped Whitman get his breakfast, I made him empty the silverware from the dishwasher. When it was almost time to leave, I heated up my Wednesday bagel. Today I had new strawberry cream cheese which made my Wednesday start off super well. My friend tried to convince me today, that if my Wednesday bagels make me so happy, then I should eat them every day of the week. I told her that they wouldn't be as special anymore so that wouldn't make me as happy.
  • Robby came to pick up Keaton from Bible study because she had her eczema appointment. They said to increase the dose of her medicine so we definitely do that. Her arms aren't much better at all (different but still worse) but there is some change in her arms so hopefully a larger dose of medicine will help. 
  • We met our buddies at Third Realm after Bible study. Robby dropped Keaton off with me so she was able to jump as well. When it was time to leave, Sara took my little 2 and I had my boys, Reagan, Alyssa, Kennedy and Noah. So it was all big kids at my house and Whitman. 
  • I read to Whitman this afternoon for a little bit. The big kids had some popcorn, watched some tv and played spoons for a little bit. 
  • All too soon, well actually after my 8 minute nap, it was time to load up to head back to church. We ate at church tonight-I brought home a whole container of ham and cheese croissants that my people didn't finish.
  • My game time went by pretty quickly tonight. But when the evening was over, I was tired and I made sure that everyone headed home! Robby had brownies ready for us so we had a snack once we came in. Then we had a bit of downtime before bed. Tomorrow it is back to school for the crew after our mid week break.

March 5, 2019

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  • We started our morning with breakfast in my room while I was reading to everyone. I am not sure how everyone manages to get something different in the mornings but they did this morning. I didn't give them very long to grab their breakfasts so getting such a variety was quite an accomplishment.
  • After our reading, everyone started on their work. For some reason, I was pretty busy this morning and didn't even get my laundry put up until noon.
  • Whitman and Keaton enjoyed listening to a book on tape after their school work was finished. Keaton flies through her work, so I try to give her something extra to do to keep her busy while she waits for lunch.
  • We then ate our lunch quickly and then started reading again. I had a hair appointment this afternoon so I had to hurry out the door to get there in time. While we were working together this afternoon, we did work on a Jr. Ranger book from our last trip. Since we aren't doing the book at the visitor's center, it makes a little bit more difficult to get the right answers. So as I ran out the door, instructing the big 3 to take a page and find the info on the internet while I was gone. 
  • When I came home, Reagan looked at me and said, "you got your hair cut." I reminded her that I had been gone to get my hair cut, but she seemed fuzzy on remembering that I had even left the house. Sometimes I worry about my kids!
  • When Robby came home this evening, we offered to take the kids to Third Realm. Only the little 3 wanted to come with us. Campbell and Keaton had been outside waiting on the neighbors to come out yet they were still working on their school work at 5. 
  • On the way home, we did have to run by the Wilson's house. Whitman had left his shoes there the other night. He had actually left 2 right shoes at their house leaving him only with 2 left shoes here. I figured that we needed to fix this before I let him to go Bible study tomorrow.
  • Once we made it home, the kids started on their showers while Robby and I made supper-waffles, strawberries and sausage. I do think that it was a hit but I still have my pot of taco soup in the fridge. Robby is trying to save Anderson from having to eat it another night. 
  • We watched a few game shows before it was finally time to send the kiddos to bed for the evening. 

March 4, 2019

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  • Graham still said that he was chilly last night even with the heater going in his room. I highly doubt that since Graham has at least 5 blankets in his bed at all times. I think that they were pretty warm and cozy in that room last night.
  • The entire house has been pretty warm today-except when you stand in front of the dishwasher. You can feel the cold air blowing into the house. We survived though and began our school work with most folks eating the pumpkin muffins we made yesterday.
  • School was fairly uneventful. Reagan did have quite a bit of work today plus she had to leave early for her orthodontist appointment. She had a decent appointment-they said only two more visits and then she can get her braces off. 
  • When she came home, we all loaded up to meet our buddies for our PE time at Third Realm. The kids all enjoyed playing today and even though it was cold, some of my people were just wearing shorts and tshirts. 
  • We came home for a few minutes and then loaded back up for soccer try outs. Thankfully, the try outs were in the church house and not at freezing cold Raymar. The lines were long but it didn't take too long. Robby helped with try outs so after we had finished, the kids had some time to run around for a bit.
  • Afterwards, we ran to Dairy Queen and Freddies for our suppers. When we met up again, we all headed home and cuddled together in the living room watching game shows before bedtime. 

March 3, 2019

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  • For some reason there are always a few Dennie kids who have not brushed their teeth when it is time to go load up the car to head to the church house. I guess I should at least be pleased that everyone was dressed in appropriate clothes and had their hair combed.
  • We made it to church in plenty of time to see the grandparents. While the kids started to see my folks, I ran upstairs. My friend from Conway was at church on Saturday. She wrote to our group asking for someone to go and check a class room because she had left her coffee mug in the room. After I wrote her during church saying that I couldn't find it, she wrote back saying that she had just discovered it-in her purse! Ha!
  • After church, the children's had an event. We started with pizza and then each grade went to different stations. Anderson and Graham helped in the sports station. Reagan helped in the painting. Robby and I took our third graders around to the different stations so Campbell was with us. Now, since we also had Whitman with us, he went with Keaton with the first graders. Not only was there sports and art, we also went to science and cooking (pancake making.)
  • It was 3:30 or after when we finally made it home. Now, we did stop for Sonic drinks on the way home-everyone was rewarded for helping (big 3) and doing the right thing (little man being able to hang with the big kids.)
  • Robby and I did take our afternoon nap even though we didn't have much time for one. Now, the girls and Whitman were working hard making perler bead minecraft things to put on Whitman's birthday cake next month. I am not sure why those perler beads only come out on Sunday afternoons when I am trying to take my nap.
  • I had taco soup in the crock pot for supper. I was pleased with my meal though Anderson was not. The recipe called for a can of soup. I thought that I had one but only had cream style corn so I used one ear of corn in the entire pot of soup. Anderson is not a fan of corn, so he ate little soup if any at all. 
  • I then started making pumpkin chocolate chip muffins with Campbell's help. As soon as those were out of the mixer, Keaton started making chocolate chip cookies for our snack. At some point, the Wilsons wrote for us to come over for some ice cream.
  • So we made a few of Keaton's cookies and everyone had one as we walked out the door. We put the rest of the cookie dough in the fridge for tomorrow night or another day. We had some cake and ice cream over there and caught up on our visiting while the kids played.
  • It was bedtime when we came home. Robby is trying out a heater in the boys' room tonight since it has been a bit chilly in their the past few days. Anderson even slept with a blanket in front of his window last night so he could stay a bit warmer. I am sure that they will be warm and cozy tonight though.

March 2, 2019

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  • The kids were kind this morning and slept in a little bit. I heard Campbell helping Whitman get his breakfast. They were fairly noisy, but at least he didn't eat 4 or 5 servings of cereal. Robby and I stayed in the bed for as long as we could. 
  • Then we scurried around marking things off of my list. Robby reminded me that if we woke up a little bit earlier, then we wouldn't have to rush around. I reminded him that if we finished our list early in the morning then what would we do all day long.
  • Our first stop this morning was at Third Realm. We did leave Reagan at home because she was still sound asleep when Robby went to ask her if she wanted to go with us. The kids jumped and jumped. Graham is always the sweatiest Dennie when we leave every single time.
  • We then ran to one restaurant for Robby to do a mystery shop while I took some of the other kids to Subway to pick out their lunch. Then we picked up Robby and ran back to the grocery store. Yep, we like to go on Friday and Saturday each week. I don't know what our problem is-well, I do know what our problem is, we can't pass up a bargain.
  • Back at home, we unloaded our groceries. Then the kids found the neighbors outside. They played for most of the afternoon only coming in to wake me up from my nap and ask me multiple questions! I was able to have a pretty good nap this afternoon and read a good bit of my book.
  • Robby pulled out all of the leftovers from the fridge. Everyone found something that they wanted for supper, but unfortunately we still put lots of leftovers back in the fridge.
  • The kids then started on their Saturday showers. Afterwards, we watched some tv while eating some ice cream. The kids had theirs tonight while I plan on eating my ice cream tonight while I am not answering any questions.

March 1, 2019

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  • I woke up in the middle of the night (not really, but 5:30 is the middle of the night for me) and thought that I heard someone knocking. I guess I didn't because they didn't knock again. I am pretty sure that I just woke up because I had to go the bathroom and heard the ice maker dropping it's ice. It did unnerve me for a good little bit though. 
  • I have been having crazy dreams lately so that probably also added to my knocking dream. A few days ago I dreamed that I was running late to take the ACT, couldn't find the class room in the rain and had Whitman with me. Now why in the world would I be taking the ACT with Whitman. 
  • I was still in bed this morning when Graham came in our room. He dropped a pile of papers and told me that he was already done with school. Now when you skip your word problems in math, don't do your math on the computer and just barely finish your writing assignment then yep, you can finish your school quickly.
  • I woke up everyone else, except for Whitman. Whitman had already decided that he was hungry and got himself a mound of Lucky Charms on a plate. I swear by the time that I saw it, it was at least 2 bowls full and he had already eaten all of the marshmallows.
  • I read while everyone had their breakfasts and then they all started on their school work. Anderson once again saved all of his difficult items to Friday. This makes me crazy, but not nearly as crazy as Keaton coming in and showing that Graham and Reagan had not done their computer math. (We had already fixed his real math and writing.) 
  • Then I started looking and found that Reagan has only done her computer math about 3 times in the month of February. It was a good thing that I saw all of this about the time that Robby and I were getting ready to go to lunch with the Wilsons. Don't worry though, I have given Reagan plenty of extra work next week to make up for all of those days that she missed! Urgh!
  • We went to the White Pig Inn in NLR for lunch. They are 99 years old, closing next Friday and were just became a member of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame. We aren't really sure what it is normally like, but when we tried to order today, the lady cut us off and said we only have pork sandwiches and fries. So that is what we had.
  • Now, by the time that we left, some people were getting bowls of something-possibly beans. We had asked about fried pies but I don't think that lady wanted us to have them so we didn't get any. That was fine though because on the way out of the hood, we stopped at Wink's. Robby and I split a peanut butter shake and some peanut brittle. The peanut brittle was wonderful, and the ice cream still did a number on my stomach.
  • Anyway, once we came home, it was time for me to turn around and take Reagan, Anderson and Graham to East and to drop Campbell and Keaton off with Sara to play with her girls for a bit. The kids seemed to enjoy East. I sat near the door so I was able to hear most of their class. And the girls had fun playing at Sara's house.
  • Afterwards, we dropped the boys off at basketball. Then I ran into the grocery store with Keaton and Campbell. I wasn't planning on buying a lot but we ended up with a completely full buggy-I was even carrying things by the time we made it to the cashier.
  • At home, we headed up supper. Robby ate really quickly and then headed off to pick up the boys. They were ready to go tonight and came home hungry. By the time I could finish working on next week's school work, they had already eaten and showered. 

February 28, 2019

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  • I think that Thursdays are one of my very favorite days o the week. There is nothing really different about Thursdays than any other day of the week. However, it is almost Friday which is almost the weekend which really makes me happy. 
  • I had to wake up all of the girls and Anderson this morning. I think that he is turning into a teenage boy because he has been sleeping more and harder to wake up each morning. This place will sure change around here when Graham starts sleeping more!
  • We did our school work this morning. Whitman was one of the last ones finished this morning. He didn't seem to care and spent at least 45 minutes this morning wrapped up in a blanket laying in the floor. This, of course, caused me to ask him if his tummy hurt and to check his forehead each time I walked by. He was just "taking a break."
  • It was still 12:45 when we ate our lunch. I intend to eat around 12:15. That would ideally give me to time to finish up school at 12, and then have a few minutes to regroup. However, that rarely happens. I will admit that I was fairly distracted a bit this morning with a few text strings blowing up my phone. 
  • We ate our lunch, and as I cleaned the kitchen, Campbell worked on cooking our meat for tonight's quesadillas. Then we started on our afternoon reading. It sometimes seems like a bit much but we are nearing the end of our science book and only have about 100 more pages of our history book to read. (In case you are wondering, that leaves me about 4 pages to read a day which is still a lot.)
  • One of the text strings this morning was about an impromptu meeting at Third Realm. Yep, we have been there 4 times this week. Keaton did wear out this afternoon, and Graham's ankle was giving him problems. However, they all still were jumping as hard as they could at the end of the hour. In 15 days, we have been to jump 13 times. That isn't too bad.
  • On the way there and back we listened to our book. We are listening to Wonder, and it is so very good. I love listening to books in the car because everyone is so quiet on the entire ride. Once at home, we had a few minutes before Robby and I started on supper.
  • Supper was a hit tonight-quesadillas without refried beans. Robby and I like refried beans in our quesadillas, but the kids do not. We don't really care, but unfortunately, tonight we were out of beans so they were pleased! Afterwards, it was time for showers and a little bit of tv watching this evening.

February 27, 2019

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  • My boys were all up this morning, but I had to wake up the girls. They were sound asleep in their cozy little room. It didn't take too long before everyone was ready, and we started work on emptying our trash cans and folding the laundry. Of course we had to get that laundry folded because we needed to find those silly Third Realm socks.
  • During the middle of CBS, Robby came to pick up Keaton. She had a doctor's appointment for her excema study. They gave her new medicine today so hopefully it will do a wonderful job on her little arms. They are looking pretty rough right now-not their worst but pretty bad.
  • After her appointment, he brought her to meet the rest of us at Third Realm. All of the buddies were there today so the kids had a good time. Gracious they jump the entire time. By the time that we left, Graham was so incredibly sweaty!
  • The Heltz came home with us for a little bit. The kids started playing outside but soon all ended up inside. Whitman could have cared less about playing with his friend that was here today. I think that we will need to work with him a bit on being more social. They did read a few books with me.
  • Once they left, the kids spotted the neighbors outside so they all went out. Of course we never ever see our neighbors except for times when we are about to leave. The kids had about 30 minutes outside before it was time for me to call them in to eat our supper.
  • We stopped by the library on the way to church. I still love my Wednesday bagels and my Wednesday library stops. Then we fought the traffic and headed on to church. The evening went by fairly quickly and soon I was gathering the kids from the playground.
  • Once we made it home, Robby had popcorn for the kids. They ate and then we watched a bit of Family Feud before bedtime.

February 26, 2019

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  • Tuesday mornings do go much more smoothly than Monday mornings usually, and today was no different than usual. As you read last night, I did have Anderson start on his real work first thing this morning. However, he ended up in the living room where Reagan and Graham do their work. So today at 10:30, he still hadn't really finished anything of any merit plus hadn't finished any of his "fun" things. 
  • Graham was in a foul mood also. Mainly because he was doing something wrong, and I corrected him. I know, can you imagine that I am so horrible? Things just went from bad to worse when it came time to work on his math and correct it...just like we do each day. 
  • Things did calm down a bit before lunch. I read while everyone ate their lunches today. Today's menu was a bit less complicated-half of the folks had grilled cheese and the other half had egg in the hole. Now please don't think that I made any of this. I did flip a few sandwiches and flip a few eggs for some, but mostly I don't do a thing to make lunches. I do make sure that Whitman does have a lunch, but usually his sisters fight each other to make his lunch.
  • After lunch, we worked on chores for a little bit while Anderson worked on his school work. We did our afternoon reading. Today we were reading about George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. So while I was reading about it, in the background I had google playing it. I am not a big google user, but things like that are pretty cool.
  • We again met some of our friends at Third Realm today. I know it seems crazy to go so much, but it at least gets my people off of their devices for an hour and a half each afternoon. The neighbor isn't home yet when we leave, and the other neighbors are never outside anymore so the kids aren't missing anything here at home. 
  • Before we did leave today, we did cut the La Ropa out front. I had the kids help me which made it go so quickly. Of course the girls were fussing over who could do the last plant. I wouldn't have done any if I would have known that they enjoyed doing it so much. I hope that I am not too late on trimming those plants back. I haven't killed them yet so they must be pretty hardy.
  • Once we made it back home this evening, Robby was soon home. We heated up some potatoes and topped them with our leftover bbq. Well, most of the kids didn't use any bbq in their potatoes. I did decide that if they would let me fix their potatoes they would enjoy them a whole lot more. Seriously, my potato topped with salsa, bbq meat, bbq sauce, sour cream, and black beans was sure a lot more yummy than theirs with just some cheese on top.
  • The excitement tonight was packing lunches for tomorrow. Seriously, I am not sure what Campbell and Keaton did in the kitchen for so long, but they took forever to make their lunch. I am very intrigued to see what all they stuck in their lunches. 
  • We watched a few shows and even finished the evening watching a bit of the Hogs play. Then it was bedtime for the crew-tomorrow will be a full day of church, jumping, and then church again.

February 25, 2019

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  • Monday morning school days can be a bit depressing, but everyone was excited to sit down on the couch that is now in the bedroom. I guess if I were to put a new piece of furniture in the bedroom every week, school, or at least the start of school. would be a bit more exciting.
  • Two people started our morning reading time off on the couch and two started off in my bed. I usually don't let people on my bed in the mornings because I know what will (and did) happen. After so much, I could take no more so the folks on the bed were kicked onto the floor. Seconds afterwards, the two on the couch also had to move to the floor. 
  • School went fairly well. Anderson usually takes the longest time to get his work done. He starts with all of his "fun" things and leaves the harder stuff to the last. This makes me crazy and tomorrow it has been strongly suggested to him that he start on the hard stuff first.
  • Surprisingly, everyone did finish a few minutes before noon. That gave me a few minutes to catch my breath before we started on our lunches. For lunch, folks had eggs (made on the skillet and in the microwave), quesadillas, paninis and there was even one snacky lunch made. By the time that lunch is over, the kitchen is trashed, and I usually have a longer grocery list than when we started.
  • After lunch, we worked on our chores followed by some afternoon reading. I had a few minutes to clean the potties. I usually let the kids clean them, but I thought that maybe they should get a little better cleaning this week. 
  • Then it was time to load up and head to PE (Third Realm). All of our buddies were there today so everyone had lots of fun. Whitman delighted in making a tower with the foam blocks this afternoon. They all had lots of fun and were pretty sweaty when we left.
  • Once we made it home, I ran with Robby to pick up supper for everyone. We brought home BBQ from a new place. It was okay, but not wonderful. The sauce was super spicy. I was even able to use my Valentine's Tums!
  • This evening everyone had showers. Then we all huddled in the living room to watch a few tv shows before bedtime. It was a pretty long evening-long enough that no one even mentioned going to bed a few minutes earlier than usual.

February 24, 2019

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  • Since Anderson had a good bit of fever yesterday, Robby took him to Grannymom's house this morning while the rest of us headed to church. He spent a quiet morning over there until everyone was finished with church. 
  • He is actually feeling a good bit better today. I have not taken his temperature but every time that I touch him, he doesn't feel feverish. Keaton did tell me this morning that her throat hurt, but she hasn't acted like it has at all today. Robby is slowly getting back to normal but he is definitely not there yet. I don't believe that I have heard Reagan cough today, but Campbell and Whitman are still coughing a bit.
  • Today during Sunday school, we didn't have to teach, but instead had lots of pastries and a brief meeting. It was nice to have a little bit of a break from teaching. I know that we have only been teaching for a year now, but I am really wavering if I am going to teach next year.
  • After church, we hustled to Dana's house to celebrate Grannymom's 75th birthday. Dana had made chili which was delicious. Then we all sang to Grannymom before cutting the cake. The kids enjoyed playing outside, and this was one of the first few days in a long time that they were able to do that. 
  • Once it was time to leave, we took home the cake but we also took home Dana's couch. She is buying a new one and gave her old one to us. Robby put it on the trailer to get home and had no problem at all. 
  • Of course we had to get it in the house which wasn't a problem. We quickly switched out couches in the living room. Our couch in the living room is comfy and well worn, and Dana's looks brand new. Robby did say that hers probably won't stay pretty very long. I will have to really monitor the kids until everyone has learned not to touch the couch!
  • The most difficult part was moving our old couch into our bedroom. We first had to move the piano out of the way so we could get the couch into the kitchen. Then it wasn't too difficult. Of course, after the couch was in the bedroom, Robby then had to move the tv cabinet over. 
  • The tv cabinet in our bedroom is massive which is a good thing (it holds lots of stuff) but it is also a bad thing (it takes up a lot of room). We will have to figure out exactly where everything will now go in our bedroom after adding the couch. Most of the things that I will have to move are my piles of school stuff that we work through every morning. 
  • We still had time for our Sunday afternoon nap. I did have to get up to take Reagan to her life group. I do think that she enjoys going to her life group even though there are mostly high schoolers there. As we drove up, there were quite a few high school boys walking in, and I did make sure to remind Alyssa and Reagan to stay away from those boys.
  • While she was gone, I helped the others find their supper. There was also time to play two rounds of Uno with the girls and Whitman. He actually only lasted for one round-he did win the first one and was quick to head out.
  • I baked cookies for a snack tonight. They were from the freezer so I didn't work too hard which was a good thing. Reagan didn't eat them because they were peanut butter. Anderson didn't eat them because they were too gooey. Whitman didn't eat them because he didn't want to leave his ipad. Keaton and Graham only ate one cookie so basically I wasted my time! 
  • I did have everyone go upstairs early tonight so they could work on their bedrooms. They had gotten a bit trashed this weekend. They did go to bed with a decently straight bedroom, too bad I can't say that about the rest of the house!

February 23, 2019

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  • It was a rainy Saturday morning which we took full advantage of. The girls helped me in the kitchen some. Campbell was planning on making some fudge. It didn't take too long for her to realize that we didn't have all of the ingredients. She became pretty sour at this even though we were still baking and even had a trip planned back to the grocery store later today.
  • Yes, it had been at least a full week since we had been to the grocery store so we felt like we should go today to make up for missing so many grocery shopping opportunities. Actually, we needed cheese, more butter, Campbell's chocolate chips and of course we couldn't resist the Valentine's day candy that was on sale.
  • Before we did head to the grocery store, Jason and Pops brought Anderson home. He had lots of fun at Pops' house even though I don't think that he felt that great. Tonight he actually had a pretty good fever. He doesn't have any thing else wrong other than his lingering cough. Hopefully, after a good dose of medicine he can sleep well tonight and feel better tomorrow.
  • Around 1, Graham, Robby and I loaded up to run to Dairy Queen for our weekly burgers. That is when we also stopped into the store. Graham was ready to get back to the house and wasn't a willing grocery shopping participant. He was pleased with himself when I let him throw two boxes of Jello in the cart.
  • I finally finished up my baking this afternoon in time to sit down for a few minutes. Then we loaded up with my jumpers-Whitman, Keaton, Campbell and Graham. Saturday night's are probably not the time to go Third Realm because the crowd is pretty rough. There was a even a little kid fist fight! 
  • Once at home, everyone had their showers while Robby made supper. Graham had requested bow tie pasta while we were at the store so that is what we had. After supper, the kids put away their laundry before settling in to play on their ipads for a little bit. It was a pretty quiet evening.
  • Before bed we did enjoy watching Whitman play PacMan on the tv. I am not sure if he knows how to turn so he just goes in a straight line the entire time with Robby and I yelling "turn! turn!" at him. It was pretty entertaining-I am not sure why I kept watching because it never took too long before he was eaten by one of those little ghosts since he continually went in a straight line.

February 22, 2019

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  • I was sleeping so well this morning when my alarm clock went off. I did hit snooze for a bit too long. Soon we were all in my bedroom with everyone eating their breakfast. Just a few folks chose cinnamon rolls so that was good for me because there might just be leftovers for me to have tonight.
  • By 11:30 this morning, everyone but Anderson were finished with their school, and he was finishing up. We ate our lunch and were soon headed to Third Realm. It was time for PE. Ha! Actually, it was socialization time since all of our friends were there.
  • The kids enjoyed jumping this afternoon. Now, everyone is not up to par just yet. So they would often take a few breaks while jumping. 
  • Since I mentioned it, here is the Dennie family sickness rundown for the day. And yes, unfortunately, I think that some of my folks aren't feeling as well as they were the other day.
    • Robby-good but still coughing
    • Tara-good
    • Reagan-good but some coughing
    • Anderson-coughing, headache, possibly some fever today 
    • Graham-stomach ache but good
    • Campbell-coughing like she smokes a few packs a day
    • Keaton-good
    • Whitman-runny nose, congestion but no fever. I have even taken his temp a few times today thinking that he did have fever.
  • When we left the jumpy place, we dropped Anderson off at Nonna and Pops' house. He was spending the night over there. He went to basketball tonight. Afterwards, they went to eat at Corkys. Once they came back home, Anderson and Jason went to town working on a Lego project.
  • During the afternoon here, I pulled out school for next week. It seems like I do that pretty often-every Friday. Then we loaded up to take Graham to basketball. Campbell and Keaton went with us while Reagan and Whitman stayed at home. 
  • While the boys were at basketball, we spend the entire time shopping. We bought so much that we filled 2 buggies after they had bagged our groceries. The girls enjoyed helping us shop because they enjoyed filling the buggy with what they wanted. Afterwards we ran by Subway for supper to take home and then picked up Graham. 
  • Once we came home, everyone helped unload the car, then we ate our supper. We watched a few shows tonight and while we did that Campbell worked on one of her Legos from Christmas. Anderson was also at Nonna's house working on a Lego set. We let everyone stay up late tonight so we were able to watch quite a few shows.

February 21, 2019

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  • It would have been a perfect day to sleep in due to the weather, and I do believe that is what all of the kids except Graham and Whitman were planning on doing this morning. I had to wake everyone else up. When it is dark and dreary outside, the girls' bedroom is so cozy and dark that they never want to get up. It took quite a bit of me calling upstairs to finally get them to come down the stairs.
  • During the kids' breakfasts we did our morning reading. Then everyone started on their individual work. 
  • Now, there was a bit of drama. Campbell decided that she didn't have time to work with me this morning when I asked her. She actually told me no and started having herself a fit when I said that we were going to work together right then. She cried saying that she would never finish her school if she worked with me then. (Interesting because to finish her school she would have to work with me at some point.) So I just sent her on to her room for 20 minutes to lay in her bed. I figured that if racing through her school work was that important for her, then she needed to slow down some.
  • She did come back down a much happier child which made me a much happier mother. Other than that school went pretty well. Now, Whitman did have his write to 100 page again in math. I think that tomorrow is the last day of that. Oh, and Whitman always has 2 phonics pages but somehow one of them, which was in my room with his other papers, disappeared. I have no idea where it went. I don't think that he hid it somewhere (Graham used to do that-I would find papers everywhere!), but I know that it will eventually turn up plus I now know that I might need to watch him a bit more closely!
  • We had our lunch, followed by chores and then some more reading. After we read, there was just a little bit of time before we loaded up to go to Third Realm. It was kind of weird today because we were the only people in the place for the first 30 minutes. When we walked in, Keaton even asked if the place was open. 
  • When there aren't too many folks there, the kids want me to watch and push and judge which is fine. That does make the time go by really quickly and before I knew it, we were loading up to head to Nonna and Pops' house.
  • Robby had bought me a cinnamon roll class at Pulaski Tech for my birthday. It was so much fun. The instructor made the cinnamon rolls as we watched, and then we went to our stations and made them ourselves. Eeek! 
  • The first part was easy but I was a bit nervous when it came time to roll out my dough. Usually, rolling out dough is Robby's job at the house. The nice lady watched and helped me! Then we rolled up our dough and cut those cinnamon rolls. 
  • There was a lot of waiting around in the class while the dough rose two different times and while the rolls baked. That was fine though because the instructor talked some, and we enjoyed listening to the other people as well. While we waited, we also ate some sticky buns that she had made during class. They were indeed delicious-like I could have eaten more or smuggled the extra pan out in my pants!
  • When the class was over, we each left with a dozen cinnamon rolls plus the recipe to make more. Now, we had been making Pioneer Woman's cinnamon rolls which have been very good, but I do believe that these are going to be even better and even easier. 
  • We headed back to Nonna's house after boxing up the cinnamon rolls. Of course we had to sample one or two or a dozen with Nonna, Pops, Jason and the kids. I do believe that everyone gave them two thumbs up. Now, Robby did admit that the cream cheese icing is probably not his absolute favorite so we will have to make some with regular icing the next batch. 
  • Once at home, the kids had their showers and then it was time for bed. It was a super perfect day and everyone continues to improve. I do think that none of my sick kiddos are 100 percent yet and Graham has even been having some stomach issues so gracious me. I am going to go and get some more vitamin C before bed!

February 20, 2019

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  • Dennie family sickness update: I think that most everyone is on the mend. Robby, Reagan, Anderson, Campbell and Whitman are all coughing. We did keep Whitman home all day today, but we don't think that he had fever today.
  • Everyone but Whitman and Reagan went to Bible study this morning. Reagan's teachers were pretty worried about her and so were Whitman's teachers. Reagan was sure that she would get a note in the mail from her teachers. I know that I have said it before, but these Bible study ladies love my kids. 
  • After Bible study, we had planned on coming home but others were going to Third Realm so we ended up grabbing a pizza before jumping for an hour. The place was empty this morning so everyone really enjoyed it. The boys are so sweaty when we leave there every single time.
  • When we made it home, everyone helped unload the car, fold the laundry and empty the trash cans. I then read a few books to Whitman to offset the multitude of ipad time that he has been racking up the last few days. He so loves books which is probably why he is already reading so well.
  • The afternoon went by really quickly because soon we were heading to church. I had wanted to leave before 5 but it ended up that we left right at 5. That meant that by the time I made it through the baked potato bar at church, there were no more sour cream or bacon bits. I didn't want any bacon bits but I did go and ask for some sour cream. I did get my sour cream and enjoyed my potato very much.
  • After church, the kids always want for me to talk so they have plenty of time to play on the playground. I did chat tonight long enough that Graham came in to find me, and Anderson asked not to stay as long next Wednesday night. 
  • Once we made it home, everyone had their showers and snacks, then it was bedtime for everyone. Tomorrow is a school day so hopefully their coughing doesn't keep any of them awake tonight.

February 19, 2019

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  • We will again begin with the Dennie family sickness update:
    • Robby-not 100% but improving
    • Tara-still a sore throat but feel fine
    • Reagan-moving a bit slowly but no fever (or at least that is what she says)
    • Anderson-more coughing today than yesterdday
    • Graham-healthy
    • Campbell-moving a bit slowly but no fever
    • Keaton-healthy
    • Whitman-fever and has asked to take 3 showers today (I have let him-shhh, don't tell our water bill.)
  • I was moving a bit slower than the kids this morning I think. I so debated just passing on school today, but I was a big girl and by 8:15 we did our reading. I read a bit less since my throat is pretty sore (no, I haven't gargled with salt water yet, but will tonight.)
  • I had decided that if anyone acted too pitiful then I wouldn't make them do everything. Campbell did lay on the floor for a good while, but didn't have any problem finishing her work. I was a bit worried about Reagan, but she was soon texting me asking to work together. She only wants to work with me when she is finished with all of her work. 
  • I did let Whitman slide on a bit of his work. This math lesson is where he has to write to one hundred every single day. I usually give the kids two math sheets, but this would take him a year so he has just been having to do one during this lesson. To make things easier, I even let Keaton write the numbers for him when he said them. 
  • It was nearly one when we did finally eat out lunch. We did do chores while I made some mac and cheese as part of our lunch. It was nice to have chores done once we did finish our lunch, though since have the crew is a bit under the weather, there were really few chores happening today.
  • Everyone but Reagan did play a nerf gun war for a little bit this afternoon. That went as well as you can imagine that it did. There were tears and name calling and that was just all by me! Kidding! There were tears and name calling, but not by me! It did prove to me that we possibly need to play a few more games around here so some people can learn to be good losers. 
  • We then read some more this afternoon. After that, I took myself a nap. I sure don't want to get sick so I am making sure that I take my vitamin C, drink lots of water and get plenty of rest. On Thursday, Robby and I have our cinnamon roll class so I am crossing my fingers that I am still healthy then. My nap was lovely with it raining and even thundering a little bit. Wonderful nap time weather. Hopefully it will still be raining tonight as we go to bed.
  • Once Robby came home, he asked the kids if they wanted go to third realm. Keaton, Campbell and Graham did. Anderson did not and Reagan also declined. Robby asked Whitman who said that maybe he wanted to go another day. Of course this caused Robby to touch Whitman and indeed he had fever. 
  • When the others left, I took Whitman's fever and it was 102. Eeek, I promptly game him medicine! We then read a few books and before too long he had perked up again. The others soon returned as I was getting supper out of the oven.
  • We had chicken and biscuits for supper. It was delicious or so I thought. I think that everyone loved it as well. After supper, it was shower time for the kids while Robby and I made some rice krispie treats for tonight's snack.
  • The girls and I watched a tv show before it was finally bedtime. Possibly tomorrow, I can say that most of my folks are on the mend! 

February 18, 2019

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  • We will begin with the Dennie family sickness update: 
    • Robby: feeling much better. He even left the house twice today and feels much better than yesterday.
    • Tara: still have drainage and a sore throat but feels fine
    • Reagan: Of the 14 girls that stayed in the house she was at this weekend, there is one flu diagnosis and 5 others who are sickly. Reagan included with fever, sore throat and coughing. She even took medicine tonight without a fight.
    • Anderson: Coughing still but feels fine.
    • Graham: Healthy and trying to avoid all other family members.
    • Campbell: Coughing and low grade fever. She threw up a bit before I made it home tonight hopefully due to medicine on her empty tummy.
    • Keaton: Healthy
    • Whitman: When he has fever he is pitiful, but when he doesn't he just has a slight cough.
  • The night was long last night. Robby started off in our bed but soon left when Whitman crawled in our bed. Not only did Whitman crawl in my bed, but he brought his water bottle and huge Spiderman pillow. 
  • Whitman must sleep with his water bottle in his hand. Every time he rolled over, he would swing that water bottle. In the beginning of the night, it was still cold so I knew there was still time to sleep. Eventually that water bottle warmed up and I knew that morning was coming. 
  • I did wake right up at 6 with Campbell standing beside me. She asked to take a shower to which I certainly agreed. If you are sick enough to take a shower at 6 in the morning, then you are sick. Her shower was quick and soon we were all back asleep until 9.
  • We didn't see Reagan for most of the day today. When she did come down, we could tell that she didn't feel all that great. She was pitiful enough that Robby volunteered to go and get her a smoothie. He also picked up everyone else a lunch at ChickFilA. 
  • This afternoon Robby took everyone but Whitman and Reagan to Third Realm. Poor Whitman didn't even seem to care that everyone else was leaving. When I told him that we were going to take a nap, he also gladly came to the couch with me. After an hour though, he woke right up and went back to his ipad. 
  • The others came home and had all had a great time. Graham said that it is his goal to dunk by the end of our Third Realm visits. Hopefully, he can do that. I soon headed out to Bunko with the girls.
  • Robby had everyone shower and fixed supper for the crew. He also handed out medicine for everyone before putting everyone in bed. Hopefully everyone will sleep tonight and feel much better in the morning.

February 17, 2019

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  • Robby was still under the weather this morning. Well, he has been sickly since late Friday evening. He did get up briefly this evening but soon hibernated on the couch in the bonus room. That is actually where I think that he is going to stay for the night too since Campbell and Whitman will be in the floor of our room.
  • During church, Grannymom did notice that Whitman was a little more still than usual. On the way to Sunday School he coughed pretty good, and I even felt his forehead. He felt fine so I sent him on to class.
  • By the time that we had collected everyone after church, Whitman was fading fast. He basically just sat in the chair during lunch at Grannymom's house. 
  • Anderson and Reagan had a great time at their Big Chill weekend. Of course staying up late comes with a middle school retreat. (Unfortunately, grouchiness also comes with a a middle school retreat and we are having a lot of it around here today.) Anderson said that he slept a total of 6 hours-I know that wasn't good for his cold. He is hoarse now plus I don't think that he is any better.
  • On the way home from Grannymom's house, I ran to Kroger to pick up some medicine for Whitman. I wasn't sure what we had. I had looked for some preventative for the rest of us but couldn't find any so I bought a big thing of vitamin C. No one else would drink it, but I am guzzling it.
  • By the time my nap and Whitman's nap (you know he is sick when he sleeps) was over, Campbell was laying on the couch. I don't think that she has fever but she doesn't act like she feels well. She has even had two showers this evening. 
  • Keaton and I ran to Dairy Queen to pick up our 3 burgers for the week. I am so glad that only 3 of the kids like the burgers because it makes things much easier. Campbell and Whitman only wanted cheese and crackers, as did Robby. Keaton ate some black beans but didn't think that mine were up to Nonna's so she didn't finish them. 
  • I did tell everyone that they had to go to bed at 9 tonight. I didn't get too much push back-I think that everyone is tired. So here is the run down on the sicklies:
    • Robby-probably not fever and possibly on the mend
    • Tara-sore throat but feels fine (yep, hopefully that vitamin C will help!)
    • Reagan-healthy
    • Anderson-congested, coughing and still using the breather regularly
    • Graham-healthy
    • Campbell-coughing and feels bad
    • Keaton-sore throat but feels fine
    • Whitman-coughing and feels bad but no fever right now
  • Overall, I guess that it could be a lot worse: it could be the stomach bug! I hope that a good night's rest will help everyone around here.