The nice part about everyone being up early is that we ate breakfast a little after 7:00 and the 4 older kids got to go on a bike ride and walk the dog before it got too hot. Of course, "too hot" is a relative term, considering today was only going to be 90 degrees. This is a lot better than than 100+ degree weather we've been having lately!
I am also learning again the principle of DELEGATION. With 8 kids around, I don't have time to do everything myself, even if I wanted to. And although I think I'm pretty good about assigning my kids chores, I am realizing that there is so much more that they could be doing. Washing dishes, for example. We're mostly hand-washing dishes between meals since there are so many of us, and Nan and Olivia did a great job on the breakfast dishes today! I might have to do more of this. Also, everyone is taking care of their own laundry and doing whatever else I am asking them to do. What a great group of kids - my own included!
After some outdoor time this morning and playing for a little while, the kids started working on their journals. Since this is such a special couple of weeks, I'm having the older 4 kids and Mallie make a journal for the time they are here. Notice their cups of blue gel beads on the table with them? Those are the ones they grew last night.
Can you see Connor in the back right corner trying to take off his diaper? No, he's not dressed. Sue me.
Once journal time was over, there was no avoiding it - time to go swimming again. I swear these kids are part fish. They would spend hours in the pool playing if I let them! Unfortunately, Niel's kids are all so fair-skinned I'd probably be sending them home with skin cancer if I did. However, they do already have some pale tan lines, despite the SPF 50 sunscreen they wear.
Ain't it cool in the pool?
Mallie is quite the poser any time there's a camera around!
Connor isn't quite tall enough yet, so he has to wear the life jacket.
Peace out, Wesley!
Nan was too busy adjusting her goggles to pose for the camera.
Nan & Olivia styling in their swim goggles...(I can't stand to wear the things, personally.)
Also, while I was taking pictures of the kids in the pool, Mallie wanted to send a message to her Mommy. Isn't she just the most adorable girl ever??
While the kids were playing this morning, Simon went down for a four hour nap. Yup. You read it right. I guess that boy really needed to catch up on his sleep! Especially since he got up so early... When he got up he actually ate lunch. This is a big deal because he hasn't been feeling good all weekend and hasn't had much of an appetite. Once he started eating, I had to take a picture:
Proof that Simon eats
The rest of our day went by pretty uneventfully. The kids watched their afternoon movie (it's becoming a tradition) and otherwise just played happily.
Olivia and Nan spent most of the afternoon drawing pictures.
Generally the kids played really well together. The biggest fights happen between Simon and Maddox, though. Generally Maddox just grabs whatever Simon is playing with and Simon screams. Poor guys. They're both "the baby".
And once again, our poser Mallie saw I had the camera out and asked for her picture to be taken with her baby doll. We have got to get this thing some clothes - it's wrapped up in a scarf for a dress!
I thought the bedtimes tonight would be a piece of cake again. Ben took the older kids to the library for the "Children Read to Dogs" night, and I had the younger kids here. Simon went down at 7:00 or so, I read I story to Mallie (and Wesley and Connor) at 7:30 and put her down. By 8:15 Simon was awake, so we got the other kids into bed and I took him with me for a quick run to Walmart. Well, relatively quick.
It's now 10:30, I've finally finished this blog post, and Simon has been asleep about 30 minutes. Here's to hoping I get a good night's sleep!