There is nothing normal about these awkward, frantic-frenzy filled days Team Es is living out, but instead we are attempting to rely on whatever rhythms have established themselves as the backbone normal of the past.
That means getting up, getting kids up, feeding and lunch prep, off to school, play with my own babies and babysitting kids while doing laundry, cleaning kitchen and meal prep, Momo goes off to school, Isaac and babysitted kid take a nap while I pray, clean up more, plan rest of day, try to get workout in, get Momo from school, feed her, and big kids while they come home from school one by one, say goodbye to babysitted kid(s), start dinner, take miscellaneous kids to miscellaneous practices, finish dinner, pick up kids, eat, clean up dinner, help with homework, finish laundry, bathe little ones, brush, floss, jammie them, pray together, read and sing to little ones in bed, yell at big kids to get off whatever electronic device and get into bed, wander aimlessly from room to room picking up socks, math assignments, ping pong balls and my car keys (why my car keys!!!) and interiorly scourge myself for not getting a run in before I collapse into my comforter induced coma.
So that is the backbone I am working from, but These Days have the added bonus categories of
"End of Year Projects!"
"Spending Every Weekend Hauling Six Kids and a Truckload to The New House Four Hours Away!"
"Training an Adult Dog That the Bathroom is Just for Human Pee!"
"Training a Toddler That Five Pound Doggies Don't Like to Give Piggyback Rides!"
Did I mention "No Dad!"
So it's basically non-stop fun. I have had the absolute pleasure of removing the category: "Show Your House Like a Model Home in Order to Sell It," because the second family that toured the place gave us an offer, we accepted, and it is now under contract. So Hoo to the Ray to that, and a shout out to our man, St. Joseph, without whose prayers we would have long ago settled for lodging at Hope Rescue Mission in South Bend. Which is actually a nice place, so thanks for nothing, St. Joe.
Here are some shots of our present normal, Rebekah Es commentary to the minimum:
Momo in just about the only place we can keep her contained in her much deserved time-outs. She has recently insisted on being called "Naomi" wherever that came from. Not now, Momo, not just now.
Finally learned to put himself for a nap. Necessity is the Mother of Discipline.
Our pretty? faces. Sunglasses to ward off the incessant headaches, unbrushed hair (all) (wish it was because of the Excuses) Melasma mustache, no time for the thrice daily regime that keeps it at bay of exfoliate, acid treat, apply SPF 400.
Obi wanted to make a billboard titled "Child Size" for this one. In defense of my mothering, this was a lemonade grossly shared amongst our whole family. It wasn't a liter of Mountain Dew Extreme for Isaac to call his very own.
What we have to look forward to, from the top: view out the front windows of the new house, banyan trees out back, a too young coconut from the trees in the yard, the milk was delicious but the flesh wasn't quite ripe.
So, twelve days of school left, a whole lot of work before us, so much to look forward to. We'll make it. But most days, it doesn't feel like it.