Four Year Time Warp

Wow. Has it really been that long?

I have been skimming over my old posts and realize- I miss writing. I think I’ll take a few minutes and catch you up on some of the changes while you were in suspended animation (‘Cause that is what Covid did to us).

Benjamin is now 4 1/2 years old. He is still my runt, but so cute and squeaky. His love is wild animals (and dinosaurs, but because there is no actual Jurassic Park, he likes animals more). From a tiny tyke he has mimicked their sounds and gaits. He wants to kill and eat them all. Yes. With no hunters in this household, he was born one. The only way to get him to eat some dinners is to tell him it is bear meat (pot roast) or deer meat (teriyaki flank steak). He takes advantage of my mommy heart as my last baby. I give in way too easy (and with him so little, it is easy). I may grow to regret that.

Israel just turned 6. Two years ago he walked up to me with his beautiful long blonde locks (to his waist) and said, “Mom- I want to look like a boy, not a girl. Can we cut my hair?” Well, seeing that he just spoke the most well formed sentence of his young life, we cut his hair. Still so handsome, but he looked like a different kid. He is a sweet, sensitive, deep thinker. Not long ago he asked me how he can be sure we go to heaven. I told him the Bible says “If you believe in your heart that Jesus died for your sins and rose again, and tell it with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, you will be saved.” He replied softly, “I do believe that.” Then, with great urgency, he looked me in the eyes and yelled “Jesus is Lord!” Need I say more?

Eva is now 8 1/2. The lone girl with two boys on either side of her. She is high energy, athletic, smart, and funny. She already helps changing Madeline, as well as feeding her, etc…. She loves to sing- loudly. We are trying to convince her that her voice sounds better when she doesn’t strain it by being so… enthusiastic. The other kids stared me down when I bought her a microphone for her birthday last year. We sing duets and can empty a room in no time.

Cory is almost 11 now. He is smart, funny and quick. Quick witted that is. Quick to work- not so much. He has a natural way of delegating while he ends up just standing around watching. That may help him some day, but as I tell all my kids, “None of you are Einsteins. You need to learn how to be hard workers.” He loves playing with the little boys, studying prophecy and Genesis 6/Daniel 2:43 related things.

J’onn is 13 now. That means there are again 3 teenagers in my home. He loves reading and is a hard worker. He has a habit of continually rubbing his hands together (think mad scientist) and walking in circles- literally making me motion sick. He does not have to change Madeline, but he can suction and feed her, give her meds, and care for her. Although he does gag when he has to suction her, it is quite funny.

Presley is 15 and finished with Driver’s Ed. She has passed her tests and is counting the days util September when she can drive without me. Actually, so am I. Her 15 year old cousin, Erin, is with us about half the time, so she buddies around with her a lot. She house-sits, dog-sits, baby-sits, Madeline-sits and is an all around hard worker. She is very thoughtful and is growing up too quickly for me.

Clara… oh, sorry, Clarabella, is 19 this week. She has flown to sunny California for her cousin’s bridal shower and will have her birthday down there. She worked at Chick-Fil-A for eight months, but quit because they were starting a vaccine mandate. But that fizzled so after a 4 month hiatus, she is starting work there again when she returns from Cali. She also wants to start college. “What for,” you ask? Funeral Sciences. She wants to embalm, cremate, reconstruct for viewings- all the stuff you and I would never do. Actually, her dad’s cousin and her husband own a funeral home, so she traveled to get some first hand experience and liked what she saw. This just adds to the list of things we just have to shake our heads at when it comes to Clara(bella).

Madeline is now 21, but I am her legal guardian. She is pretty much the same. Maybe a few more issues to tackle. But she still loves movies and her Kindle and the tetherball hanging from the ceiling. She goes to church and reaches out and grabs people’s hands and says “Hello”- but like Scooby Doo says Hello except replace the Rs with Ws. So basically she made herself a greeter. One that catches people by surprise. It is half fun to see their expressions, and half embarrassing as I often have to apologize and tell her to “let go of the nice lady’s hand.”

Tristan would be 23 now. He’s been gone 13 1/2 years. I appreciate Madeline’s former nurses that never forget to text me that they are remembering him on his birthday. Amber, Colette and Rainey – Thank you.

Adrian III is 25. He and Hannah just had their 1 year wedding anniversary a week ago, and they gave us Mackenzie 6 weeks ago. Our first granddaughter. She is an angel. Adrian is still in the Costco Tires Center, and a volunteer firefighter. Hannah is ending her career at Target with maternity leave and will be here two days a week (with Kenzie!) caring for Madeline starting in 6 weeks or so. They live about 30 minutes north of us and still go to the same church. I love Sundays. After teaching the 3-4 year olds at the 9 am service, I get to sit in the 11 am service and hold Kenzie. I will admit, it is difficult to pay attention at times when I have this sweet baby in my arms.

Hailey is almost 27. She and Mike have THREE BOYS!!! Asher (3), Elias (2), and Rowen ( 9 mo.). They are here playing with gramma, grandpa, their uncles and aunts four days a week while Hailey cares for Madeline. As I consider this, part of why I have not written is because I am loving being a busy Gramma. It is so sweet to have them stair-step with their uncles. In July, it will be Israel-6, Ben-5, Asher-4, Elias-3, Rowen-1, (and Kenzie- 6 mo). They live about 20 minutes from us, go to church with us, and I rarely go a day without talking to Hailey. I am so blessed to have my adult daughter as one of my closest friends.

Well, two years ago, we moved. We were in our tiny home for 19 years, then one day the Lord set up some circumstances (as we were not looking to move) and- BAM! I saw my dream house in person and bought it within 10 hours. We were blessed to get to know the owner and actually bought many of his household items and furniture, as he wanted to drive away in a van with at trailer and his three dogs from this 6500 square foot home. So now we are on 5 acres in Chattaroy, about 25 minutes north of our old house. The kids can play outside without worry of speeding cars or weirdos. However, we have had moose, bobcat, cougar, and even a wolf, so there are other things to be aware of.

Our neighborhood has (mostly) welcomed us with open arms. Of the 9 houses on our dead-end dirt road, 6 of them walk EVERY MORNING. Six am rain or shine, warm or freezing, soft light or stars like midnight. Oh, and their dogs outnumber us humans. (No, I don’t take ours, this is my morning escape!) But I so love my neighbors and look forward to every walk with them. So much so that twice a week I take two walks just so I can see everyone, since there are a few sane people who wait until 7:30 to hit the road.

Adrian still works nights for the Spokane Police Department and loves it. Of course, he works nights as it is more action-packed. I thought I would love sleeping by myself alone in a king sized bed while he was away at night. Maybe I would, but I rarely have the bed to myself as he tells Israel and Benjamin that they need to sleep in mom’s room and take care of me. I have a hard time saying no to that anyway. It’s not so bad. I might get two nights a month to myself. The other nights it is like a pig pile, and I am the unfortunate one on the bottom of the pile.

As for me… I am older, heavier, and hopefully wiser. The Lord is so good and as soon as I stopped having babies, my kids gave me grand babies. I am hoping to marry Clara off soon and keep that party rolling. In fact, I may be selling raffle tickets for that prize.

The world is nearing its judgment, so things are increasingly black and white for those with discernment. The spiritual battle is intensifying, and the effects of it in the physical realm are manifesting. I know Christ will come for his bride before the 70th week of Daniel, but we may see much of the set up to Ezekiel 38 and the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. Which means things will grow increasingly difficult. Of course they will- how else could it be?

I hope to catch up more often. I wish blessings on all 13 of you who will receive this post.

Fruit Socks

So we, along with millions of other Americans, finally got it. “It” creates a lot of quality mom and child time- although that time has to often be shared because there is an abundance of “it” in our home. It has given us days free from any other plans where we can just relax at home. We have even had 7 nights of campouts! Soooo fun!!!

What is “it,” you ask? Well, that would be the flu. At first I thought it was a bad cold, but with the fevers and some kids puking… definitely the flu.

This started around January 25th when little Benjamin became sick with a “cold.” That grew progressively worse. Then, at 2 am on January 31st, 8 hours before we had to leave to watch my husband’s swearing in as a Spokane Police Officer, he was so sick that I was trying to decide if I could get to the ER to have him 1) treated and sent home in time to go to Adrian’s event, or 2) get him admitted and call a friend to sit with him while I went to Adrian’s event. Because he fell back asleep, I ironed everyone’s clothes and got ready for the day. By 3 am I had everything packed up. I went to the pantry to get a granola bar and could hear Israel SCREAMING for me from downstairs. I quietly waited to see if his sister would be able to calm him down. I breathed a sigh of relief as he quieted, only to groan- he quieted down because Presley was bringing him to see Mommy. I got him set up on the sofa with Clara and loaded up the car. When I came back, he was screaming again. I had to quiet him down quickly as Adrian’s first day of work started in a few hours and I didn’t want to wake him. So I decided to wait it out, knowing that I couldn’t get to the Doctor for 10 hours once making that decision.

(That was night 1 on the sofa. Last night was night 7 with no end in sight. *SIGH*)

After the swearing in (which was great- SO proud of Adrian, and so thankful the Lord moved mountains to bring us here), I took Benjamin to the doctor who diagnosed him with RSV. Because he was dehydrated and puking tons every time I tried to give him medicine for his fever and ear infections, we decided on 2 antibiotic shots that day and acetaminophen¬†suppositories. (Which, by the way, sound great because they can’t puke it up… but it doesn’t mean they can’t shoot it out at you- with diarrhea- with amazing force!) She wanted to see him the following morning- and if he was any worse she may admit him.

Well, he wasn’t better, but he wasn’t worse. Thankfully, she gave him another 2 antibiotic shots and we went home. By the time we got there, other kids were getting sick. And it has basically been spiraling downward- no- swirling around the bowl- since then. Oh yes- quality mom and child time. Cancelling of all plans. Campouts on the sofa (with up to 5 kids) so dad can sleep and be able to go to work, and mom can give meds, monitor fevers, give nebulizer treatments, change diarrhea diapers, give fluids, and sleep. Oh no, wait, not that last one. What was I thinking, I must be tired.

My kitchen table looks like a pharmacy- loaded with OTC and prescription drugs and vitamins. Last night I had to go to Walmart at 3 am for more medicine and popsicles. Eva and Israel were getting no other fluids but popsicles. Israel is now on antibiotics for an ear infection, and so the Table Pharmacy keeps growing. I even had a friend bring me some more Albuterol for our nebulizer- I wasn’t expecting Cory and Eva to need it- and I was down to rationing it out!

So that is the background for the conversation Becca heard today.

Presley and J’onn were sitting at the table, and J’onn was about to take some medicine and vitamins. She told him to “take the orange pill, I love it, it’s yummy!” (A Vitamin C chewable.) Eva, barely coherent on the sofa, chimed in with a completely monotone voice, “No it isn’t – it’s disgusting.” Presley again, “It’s good, it tastes like fruit!” Monotone Eva, “No it doesn’t, it tastes like fruit socks.”

So chew up those fruit socks, J’onny. Stop puking when I give you Elderberry juice, Cory. Stop fighting me on EVERY SINGLE PILL OR LIQUID I come at you with, Eva. Stop pushing those suppositories out like a bullet, Benjamin.

I know the Lord will see us through this. And I need to feign competence here, as I don’t want my husband to think his wife can’t handle this now that he has a job he has to be there for at scheduled times! (It’s been years!) I’m just thankful my flu has been minimal, so I have just enough energy left to clean the kitchen chairs Cory just puked all over. Every single leg, really?


On a more positive note, Benjamin took his first crawls yesterday, and today has been crawling all over. Just one more thing to keep an eye on….