What a difference a year makes seems so cliche` but oh my hell the difference from last year to this year has been amazing.
I took all 5 of my kids to the pool Sunday and didn't get in the pool once. now before you get all judgy on me. They could lay down and walk on their hands with their heads out of the water in the kiddie area and the big kids are good swimmers and could touch everywhere they went. PLUS. There were only 12 kids in the pool tops (love Sundays in Utah) and 2 lifeguards watching and whistling at them every couple of minutes. :) I sat with a friend in awe of the entire experience. How and when did we get to this point ?
Like eating dinner in a restaurant. I compare it to leaving the house to run a quick and easy errand with toddlers and babies in tow. It was this major freaking to do. Packing and the crying and nobody listening and trying to get 2 in the car while at least one other child was getting undressed or had taken his shoes off in the house, which room was always a mystery. And then while finding and redressing said child at least 1 if not 2 would escape. Herding cats. That's what it was like. Eating out was always like this too. It was something that always seemed doable and then once done we would reflect on it in horror and promise to NEVER EAT OUT FOR AT LEAST 5 YEARS ! Little did I know we only needed 1 year.
Now I'm not saying that it's perfect. We still have to remind them to "use your inside voices" and you'll occasionally hear us remind them to "get off of the floor and sit in your seats." We will warn them that we will have to separate them or someone might have to go sit in the car. but you know what. nobody has ever had to go sit in the car. We leave and we've all eaten....and I'm not talking x30 fast forward speed either. I don't wish that I had partaken in several adult beverages before leaving. and whether we will go out and eat again isn't even on our minds because it doesn't matter. We are managing. Things are manageable.
Things change like, the writings on the wall. literally. With my first offender I remember asking her, Syd...why did you write on the walls ? What went through your head that made you think that was a good idea ? Don't write on the walls anymore. repeat. repeat repeat.
When the big boys came around it was, Guys.....don't write on the walls. Can't we keep ANYthing nice. repeat repeat repeat.
The other day,
Spencer : Mom, Nathan wrote on the walls. (we always know who the offender is because for some screwed up reason, they always sign their names to their art projects :)
Me : Will you please hand him the Mr. Clean Eraser.
Live and learn. Shit happens.
Look what we can do.
Monday night game night at our house has mostly consisted of physical games like monkey in the middle, colored eggs and hide and seek in the dark (my kids FAVORITE. the seeker gets a flashlight, hiders get 20 seconds to hide anywhere in the upstairs)
We however have finally reached an almost perfect age to play and enjoy board games. Games will say that they are for ages 3 and up....but with the focus capacity and age appropriate frustrations it's just been too hard with 5 kids. Now, still with a little help from a mom(s) game night has been elevated to a whole new level.
I have tried really hard to absorb and appreciate these little people for the last 9 years. Soak up and enjoy each experience. I don't ever want to forget and I will always treasure the time we've had. but I gotta tell you.....this is nice....and I can't imagine how great it's going to be in 1 year. or even 2. Once again. I still hear, "mom, Ryan just peed outside" and "mom Nathan is trying to get Lily to lick his butt" more than I'd like. Things are still hard, I still get frustrated and want to ring 1 if not 5 of their necks but it's better. and I don't feel guilty or bad for looking forward to the future instead of living in the here and now. which I do. because HELLO-O. it's here and it's now. and speaking of now. I've gotta go watch Despicable Me 2 with my brood because we moved movie night friday night to tuesday night because it's thanksgiving week and the kids don't have school tomorrow.
So. I guess why I blogged was to say. It gets better. and I like it. and I'm thankful. (deep happy sigh)