We got home late Monday night. Blaine had Tuesday off, but I had to jump right back in – the girls had a back-to-co-op get together, and perishable groceries were scarce around here. Throw in physicals for a few kids Wednesday and finishing up at another grocery store, and that left me with trying to get caught up on the lawn today. The grass was a good foot tall. Oh. My. Word. Mowing it didn’t really make walking through it better.
Of course, Eden mopped the kitchen for my while I mowed. How does that always happen? Clean floor? Guaranteed, I’ll mow and make rice for supper to properly soil the formerly clean floor. I skipped the rice today… because the thought crossed my mind and I amended supper plans. It’s craziness. I did get the lawn finished and three flower beds weeded. Or, rather, mostly just dirt beds. The flowers didn’t fare so well while we were away. Liberty kept the laundry moving through today and the house is starting to shape back up. I thought, at least. Apparently no female child has ventured to unpack yet. Fun times. I may not be so caught up on laundry as I thought.
Yesterday at the doctor’s office, Ruby was disgruntled with Eden. “You’re taking up almost the whole chair!!!” Big family problems… a whole chair to yourself? Why, that’s just selfish!
I was afraid Stellan had ruined whatever good sleep habits he had when we went to South Dakota. He thought in bed with me was really the only decent place to sleep and cried if I even considered handing him to anyone else or putting him down – even my kids or Blaine holding him made Stellan mad. We got home and he fell back into old routines, sleeping in his own bed and happily hanging out with sibling for a bit. He even started napping in his bed! That’s a new one. He’s the mini dictator around here, making life miserable if he’s not getting what he wants. A good nap and a break now and then was much needed. I’m exhausted.
I took the kids the Bass Pro on Wednesday. I realized as we walked in that 6/8 of them were in matching gray Bass Pro t-shirts. You know, the ones that they wear every single time they are clean. I think they find great pleasure in watching me squirm at the sight of a lineup of matching shirts. If I didn’t look like a daycare before… I do then.
We were headed into Aldi Wednesday for groceries when a lady gave me her cart and said to keep the quarter, because I clearly need it more than she does. She counted my kids and told me how beautiful she found them to be, then said if she had money she’d give me grocery money. Um… awkward?! I laughed and thanked her for her kind remarks, got inside, and a few minutes later a lady gave me her grocery coupon $5/off $30. I don’t even know. Just… thanks. Because I don’t know what else to say. I make a pretty strong effort to go anywhere and everywhere with clean, decently dressed, hair-done children, because we get enough looks without letting them look like ragamuffins. I apparently failed in spite of my attempts that day. Maybe it was the lineup of gray t-shirts that clearly get washed every other day and are starting to fade. I don’t even know.
The kids started recalling times that something like that happened. We’ve had meals paid for at restaurants, a $100 bill handed to me once, a $10 bill another time, a $5 bill another time. We have had a gift card handed to us to buy most ice cream recently. In all the remembering, it’s reminded me that while we get a lot of looks, a lot of rude, sometimes downright crude and disgusting comments, that there’s still a whole list of people my kids can recall that have complimented our family in a very kind way.
Or they just thought I needed all the help I can get. Because sometimes, that’s true. Next time they all get matching t-shirts, I’m thinking bright orange. At least if they have to all match I can pick them out of a crowd and count them better that way.
Then we really will look like a daycare.