Thursday, February 24

Doctors and Scoutnig and Rain, Oh My!

Zorak had his surgery Friday. It went well. The man has the constitution of a Southwestern Homesteader, that's for sure. The broken bone needed no work, as it was already mending quite nicely. Doc dealt with the torn bits and sent him on his way. I am so glad (and *thankful*) that he's not been a pain in the butt kind of recoverer. This is one of those injuries that requires cooperation and focus, or it could be ugly. Zorak's been fantastic. If he keeps this up, he'll be back out there in just a few months, working in the garden and helping the boys with projects as if nothing ever happened.

The Blue & Gold was nice. Really nice. The boys said they had a blast. Parents have said they enjoyed it. We were in and out in an hour and fifteen minutes. There was time for skits and fun stuff, awards, announcements, special recognitions. The Friends of Scouting rep gave an awesome talk, and I hope we gave well. The best part, for me, was when the people who helped me wade through the waters to make the event happen laughed and said, "We should do this again, next year." Truly. I've worked in volunteer organizations before and I've never heard someone say they *wanted* to take on a job or position again. That made my heart smile, on many levels.

We're now facing all of the projects we had lined up for March. Most of them, we'll need to modify and/or push back. Some, we simply can't. They're springtime projects - pruning the big old fruit trees, putting in the garden (I might sell the stove so I can buy a tiller, because I don't have it in me to turn that thing over by hand again!) I told the boys Zorak's been promoted to Supervisor for the Springtime, so he'll be lining us up and we'll need to do the work. I'm not sure they believed me. (He's never been not-doing-work on projects.) But we'll get it done, and it will be good. Anybody have a cherry picker we could rent for the pruning?

Kiss those babies!

Wednesday, February 16


Yes, I'm posting between breaths, lately. Right now I have a freshly cleaned and turned mattress with clean sheets awaiting me (compliments of the one who fell asleep and peed on the other sheets... *aherm*) and I can barely keep my eyes open.

First thing: Our Pastor's wife is a saint. I know, that sounds cliche, doesn't it? But no, she really truly is amazing. Any woman who doesn't even *blink* before offering to triple the number of children in her home all day long when you need emergency child care? Made of some fantastic combination of angel dust and titanium.

Second thing: *argh* Zorak's final, official, really-real diagnosis is a torn ligament in the rotator cuff *and* a broken bone. He's more than a little freaked out by the sheer math involved in the odds. (I'm still weirded out that he was wielding a chain saw just this past weekend...) End result? Surgery, and a minimum 3 months of physical therapy. End goal? 100% recovery. Could be worse. Could be much worse. We'll have our minds wrapped around it shortly. I hope.

Third... oh, lunch at Logan's Roadhouse. I cannot believe we've lived here nearly six years and hadn't eaten there, yet. Oh, but we will go back. Yes, we will. We might even take the children. AND they have a gluten-free menu, too, which I thought was pretty awesome business sense.

And now, good night!

Kiss those babies!

Tuesday, February 15

I have ten minutes

I've got ten minutes while the Creamy Citrus Ginger dressing mellows, then I'll have to go round up the children and turn a hose on 'em so they can eat. Ah, it's gorgeous out. AND, I have a child who asks to mix up something called Creamy Citrus Ginger Dressing. Seriously? When I was 12, I failed a Home Ec assignment because my lab partner and I were convinced that if we doubled the brown sugar and the chocolate chips, we'd create the BEST COOKIE BARS EVAH. For obvious reasons, Mrs. Baker (kid you not, real name) disagreed. We could not choke down the cookie bars to save our grades. But here, I have been blessed with a child who makes this, and not even for a grade! Ah. Sometimes, when life is not fair, it's totally not fair in-a-good-way. Mrs. Baker would be proud. Or shocked. But I'm going with proud.

Zorak, turns out, broke. his. arm. on our ski trip. Yeah, I know. I have no clue what can be done a month later, but he goes in tomorrow to see a specialist about how to deal with it. He asked me last night to go with, so I've spent the morning leaving messages with everyone I know who either lives between us and the doctor, or isn't afraid to watch five kids at a Chick-Fil-A playground for an hour. On a day's notice. Wee! (You can imagine how terrifyingly short that list is. *sigh*) I very briefly considered giving Jase a heavy dose of Nyquil and just taking them all with us, but that was only for fun. Nobody really does that. Anymore. Ah, yes. So, I'm hoping somebody will call me back and say, "Sure! I love those fries!"

We spent the weekend thinking about getting some work done on the land. Got the driveway graded, so that was huge. Plus, we got to visit with friends when that was done, so that was cool. You can't hear the Volvo cry out in pain when Zorak leaves each morning, now. It's very comforting. Now, to get gravel on it before it rains. That will be the challenge.

And, I do believe that was ten minutes! Time for lunch! Yum!

Kiss those babies!

Friday, February 11

On Not Resting

Wow, Monday came in with a *bang* and then *fwoosh* the whole week flew by, and now *pow* it's Friday! Dang. Good stuff, but still. The calendar pen is near to bursting into flames.

Monday we had Scouts. I had to go wrangle some of the Boy Scouts to come set up and take down for Blue & Gold. My official pitch was that their reward would be service hours and all the homemade desserts they could stand. But we have a phenomenal bunch of boys, and they'd have agreed to come, even without the food. I think. Food is a pretty decent motivator for kids, though. We also got a team to volunteer to teach the Webelos how to do a color guard. Yay!

Tuesday was Scouts for the little guys. I had to give a quick presentation to them on the plan for the Blue & Gold, then go over the plan with the other Den leaders. We also kinda-sorta went through the supply closet. It's in a basement, and it's an old building. It was gross, really. However, thanks to the joy of plastics, most of the stuff is salvageable and/or sealed and totally still good. Score!

Wednesday we had the 6-month mass invasion of the kids' dentist office. They're so good to us, and the kids did fine. I forgot, again, to bring food (it takes a long time to get through five kids), and was on the verge of eating a hygienist by the time we left. We met Zorak for lunch at a buffet, thus saving hygienists across the Valley a gruesome fate. The rest of the day was taken up with music lessons and groceries and all the other normal niceties that Wednesdays bring.

Thursday, we got another 2" of snow! Zorak went in to have his arm looked at. He'd injured it when we went skiing, but... well, anyway, he went in. The doc suspects he damaged his rotator cuff and sent him for an MRI today. We'll know sometime next week if we're looking at surgery. We're really pulling for a big fat, "Hey, you just pulled it!" Meanwhile, the Wolf Den was snowed out of the outdoor flag ceremony for the morning, so we did what you do when you get snow in the South - we went out and played in it before it melted away.

And today... we got caught up on all the things we weren't doing the rest of the week. We had our postponed Den meeting, did ALL the schoolwork, tidied the house and prepared for the weekend, then collapsed for a movie night and shuffled everyone off to bed at a decent hour.

I honestly have no idea what we have going on this weekend. Zorak just told me we're getting the driveway graded tomorrow, and considering how badly it needs it, that's right up there with getting a dozen roses, so I'm pretty stoked about the potential for a great weekend! Maybe I'll return the favor by doing something equally romantic, like pruning the fruit trees. ;-)

Kiss those babies!

Sunday, February 6

On Resting

I'm resting well. Healing well. Feeling very close to 100%-ish. The kids and Zorak are picking up ALL the slack, and honestly, they're rocking it, big time. I just slipped out to see what smelled so good, and Zorak said, "We've actually kept this general area fairly clean the last couple days. Honest." (Truth be told, it looks fine - better than I thought it would. AND, they have soup simmering. Scotch Broth recipe from an old cookbook, made with venison in lieu of beef. Soaked barley and lentils. Smells heavenly! They better save me some. Total win category, on all fronts.)

Meanwhile, aside from enjoying the "special rocks" the little ones bring me throughout the day (yesterday, they came bearing large chunks of concrete - friends joked that the house may be missing foundation pieces - until I can verify, though, I'm just going to say they're washed out bits of the driveway. Please be the driveway...), and soaking up the ongoing bomber snuggles Jase provides (he knows he's going to get caught by *someone*, so he goes very very quickly) -- well, I've been reading. And watching.

Lawrence of Arabia (Alistair MacLean)
Sisters Grimm, Book 1 (Michael Buckley)
The Imaginary Invalid (Moliere - a quarter of the way through, and I can't remember how to do accents properly in this editor, sorry)
The Crimes of England (GK Chesterton)
The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)

(Yep, somebody downloaded the Kindle for PC app onto the netbook. I'll probably run out of memory if I'm not careful, but that's a quick and pleasant way to blow an afternoon! It is also amazing how much reading you can get done when you're not doing anything else. AND, I'm officially putting the kids on alert that Mommy Wants a Kindle for Her Birthday.)

Psych (Season 4 - Netflix)
Eureka (Season 1 - Hulu)
The Bounty (with a very-young-if-you-count-on-a-curve Anthony Hopkins)
Jodhaa Akbar (Netflix)

But I miss the kids and our regular routines. They've been getting ready for bed early enough that I can slip out and read to them. I appreciate that - that time is as much for myself as it is for them. (We're reading 100 Cupboards right now. That's been a fun ride, so far.)

Today was the first nice day we've had in a week, and after they finished their chores and had breakfast, they were out all day - running, climbing, splashing, playing, chasing, swinging. Zorak said at one point he thought about putting them to work picking up the recycling area, but he looked out at them all, running through the meadows together, taking turns on the swing, laughing, playing, and he just turned around and went back to his own projects. Just one of the many reasons I love that man - he gets it. They're learning how to work hard and play hard. That's an awesome combination.

And now, I'm going to go see if that soup is ready!

Kiss those babies!

Saturday, February 5

Winter wonderland!

We keep getting snow! And rain! It's beautiful and wonderful. We need another few loads of gravel and some concrete, though. The driveway looks as though the house has been abandoned longer than we've actually lived here. The Volvo lodges pretty legitimate complaints every time Zorak tries to leave. Hopefully, we'll be able to get the drive graded and lay down some rock in the next week or so, seeing as Zorak kind of has to go to work on a regular basis. I'm sure the UPS guy would appreciate it, as well.

In the meantime, I've had the next round of surgeries on my jaw this week. Today was a recovery day. I am thankful to have an astoundingly talented periodontist who I trust with my life. I am also thankful, 24 hours later, for the technology that is modern pharmaceuticals. Truly. Beyond words. God bless the inventors of Percocet and Zofran, and those who make the generics available now. *\o/*

It's funny, though how often I wish for some quiet time, yet by about ten this morning, I found myself just listening to the kids down the hall, and it was impossible not to scoop Jase up in a big old snuggle every time he made a break for it and came rambling down the hall to me (which was about every 30 minutes or so). It made my jaw ache a bit, but I couldn't resist reading with the boys at bedtime. That really was the highlight of the day.

They're enjoying the long weekend, and getting ready for the Pinewood Derby. I think today they set up the track in the basement and rigged the lever so Jase can operate it. He had a blast, but from what the boys said, he forgets to clear the track. I think they're being gracious. I doubt he's forgetting anything - he's more likely aiming more for a Pinewood Demolition Derby. Regardless, he's stoked and the basement is Speed Shop Ready! Let 'em roll!

Kiss those babies!