Thursday, December 14, 2017

November 2017 In Our Home

  It's now the middle of December and I'm just now writing the "November In Our Home" post. Oh well. At least I'm still getting it done!

We've got remedies for sinus issues,
stomach issues, fever issues,
and tissues. Phew, it was a time!
    November began much like October had been with lots of sickness still. I believe we ended up with about six weeks of the norovirus (stomach bug) followed by colds. We just couldn't seem to get rid of the viruses! Having all little ones whose mouths and hands go everywhere is what made it so challenging, despite my best efforts to clean everything. By the end I felt I was on my way to losing my mind, and desperate for everything to be absolutely sterile to get to the end of the viruses. I cleaned plastic toys in the washing machine with bleach. Wood toys were wiped with Chlorox wipes. Bedding changed, and then changed again. Floors scrubbed. We even shampooed the couch and dining chairs. If it could be cleaned I attempted to clean it. We, of course, stayed home for much of that time. Phew, I really hope to not experience all of us sick for so long for a long, long time! 

     Eventually the sicknesses did pass, and just in time too because David's parents made their annual pre-Thanksgiving visit. (They come the weekend before Thanksgiving each year). This was actually our best visit with them yet! For the first time, the children have become familiar enough with them to now feel comfortable around them. It was probably the first time that I relaxed a bit more as well. I'm typically super high-strung and feel like I still need to aim to impress. This time, around, I just had to acknowledge to myself that with three little ones now that I can't be a perfect homemaker, host, etc. The house was just going to have to be "lived in" while there were here because that's reality. To my surprise, his Mama blessed my socks off while they were here and did all the dishes for me after every meal. It was so nice. haha. While they were here they brought Christmas gifts for the children. I've joked that they got themselves put on Santa's Naughty List for Annelise's gift- a doll that cries incessantly. haha (Yeah, those batteries got removed pretty fast!).

    One matter of preparation for their visit that I did do was assemble the last two dining chair and recover all the seats. This was a project I started back at the beginning of the year. However, now was the time to get it done as we didn't have enough chairs for our family plus visitors. (We've had the chairs, but they've been in boxes in the garage all this time). The seats of the chairs are originally cloth, which hasn't worked well for our family of young children. I wanted something I could simply wipe clean, so I purchased some black vinyl. I ran into a snag in simply stapling the material onto the chairs as the wood was very hard and just bent the staples. So I resorted to attaching the material with teeny tiny nails. It took me about an hour to do each chair. After over a week of daily work, I finally finished recovering all eight chairs! (The last four evidence my improvement in attaching the material smoothly. haha). I actually really like the look, and even think they look better than the brown material that was on them before! I'm so glad to have that project finished. I can now check that item off my dining room decor list as well.        

First Thanksgiving!

Then, there was Thanksgiving. Last year I was on top of everything. I had a plan for what would be made when and even had some things like the pie made in advance. This year... not so much. I just couldn't seem to get my head wrap around everything that was going on at the time. It all worked out well, and we enjoyed a delicious Thanksgiving meals as a family. I had hoped we might be able to one day use the fact that we don't have extended family on Thanksgiving as an opportunity to reach out to others who may be in a similar position. However, we struggled with actually knowing who that might be. Plugging in and/or connecting here as been really tough. Even if it didn't happen this year, it can still be my prayer for next year!

     On a similar note, I had anticipated us celebrating the season of thankfulness. However, those activities never came to fruition. I want myself and my children to grasp the meaningfulness of the Thanskgiving season, but perhaps we simply need to wait until a later time. I know many people are able to incorporate such traditions, but for me this year it quickly became overwhelming. Sometimes (uh hem..many times) trying to add something extra or orchestrate an activity with three children three years old and under can become so stressful. Honestly, I do pretty good to keep up with everyone's needs in a day and keep the house relatively tidy. So, thanksgiving activities didn't happen this year. But, that's okay. We can try again next year. 

    My personal interests like reading and Bible study were rather lacking this past month. I really miss these! Psalm 42:1 says, "As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God." That's precisely the sentiment of my heart presently. Prayerfully, I'll find opportunities to read and study again soon. 

       As hectic or straining as November was, December is looking like it will be even more so. Buckle up, a wild ride awaits.

In the meantime, a few fun photos of the children. These were taken earlier in the month. We attempted one final corn crop, but it didn't get far. So, we allowed the children to play in the "jungles" and then enjoy finally getting to pull the plants up! 
3 years old

2 years old

9 months old!

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