Meet The Nat Pack!

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The Nat Pack: The super fashionable, super mod, super hip family consisting of Nat, Pete, Jakob, Brock, Troy, and Ivy. Like The Rat Pack, only younger, cuter, and not as rich or famous.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

More Sickies

My turn last night. Ugh.
And here I was, thinking that I had escaped unscathed. Not so, my friends. (Good thing I did all that laundry yesterday, though.)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Norm

I ran my washer and dryer nonstop from 9:30 p.m. Sunday night until 3 a.m. Monday morning.
Then I had it going nonstop from 9:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. yesterday.
This morning, I still had two loads to run.
(I really, really wish I was exaggerating about the sheer amount of fabric running through my machines. I should have counted the loads, but that would have been depressing.)

And now, I only have 5 or 6 loads waiting for me to fold. Which is actually how much laundry I end up having when we aren't sick.

Yep. That looks about right.

Monday, September 28, 2009

1, 2, 3

1, 2, 3 kids down with the flu last night.

1, 2, 3 kids and a mom asleep on 1, 2 couches.

At 1, 2, 3 o'clock in the morning, finally.

After 1, 2, 300 barfing moments.

1 bathroom completely cleaned after getting throw-up all over it. It stayed clean for about 12 hours, until this morning.

1, 2 kids I attempted to move back to their beds at 1, 2 in the morning. Kids 1 and 2 both threw up again.

1, 2 schools being missed today.

1, 2, 3 kids, hopefully feeling better.

1 kid that missed the whole thing (but either had it last week when he threw up 1, 2 times at 1 in the morning, or his turn is next).

1, 2, 3 sets of sheets and bedding and clothing (and then some) to be cleaned. Still working on that one.

1 tired mom.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Reasons to Dance

-Brock went to the dentist for the first time. He screamed. A lot. It was kind of like when he rode the dragon ride at the fair. (Nooooo! I, don't, WAAAAAANNNNNT TOOOOO!) But then we convinced him to sit in the chair and go up and down. Then I counted his teeth for him. Then the dental hygienist started with her mirror and pick, and all of a sudden: "That feels good." He ended up doing everything but the X-rays.

-I signed Jakob up for a hip-hop class. We were originally going to have him take karate, but we're thinking the dancing thing is more down his alley right now. His first class was on Monday, and he loved it.

-We refinanced our house. It went a little like this: "Hey. How about we knock 11 years off your mortgage? Oh, and we'll also take 1.5% off the interest rate for you, too. Is that okay? And we're thinking we'll give you some cash back, which you'll use to pay off another debt you have. Also, it's only about $300 more a month, is that too much? And doing this will cut out October's house payment for you. How does that all sound?" Um, yeah. They really had to twist our arms to get us to sign the papers.

-I've found some awesome sites lately. Check 'em out: Item Not As Described, People Of Walmart (thanks, Marci!), Emails From Crazy People (mind the f-bombs), Lovely Listings, Passive-Aggressive Notes, Probably Bad News, and Awkward Family Photos. Hilarity ensues.

And here are our little dance machines getting all crazy. (Some of the sweetest moves are between 1 and 2 minutes. I wish I knew how to edit down videos.)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

O'Doyle Rules!

I'm starting to think that the "dear old golden rule days" are not going to be so "dear". This week we were driving to the dentist, and Jakob started telling me about a kid in his class. We'll call him McMeany.

First, I need to tell you about a kid that was in my grade in elementary school growing up. I was one of the really good kids. I was also very runty. There was this huge kid with red hair, and he was kind of mean and kind of bad. I always got put in a seating chart next to him, maybe to keep him in check or whatever. He reminded me of those kids in the Billy Madison movie-the really big red-headed kids that are mean just to be mean, and they're way bigger than the other kids, whose last name was O'Doyle. But you know? I was so scared of him. He could have eaten me for breakfast, and still would have been hungry. The point: I know what it's like to be the little kid in class, sitting next to the big kid in class. Which brings us back to McMeany.

This is not our first encounter with McMeany. When Jakob and he were in nursery together, McMeany would go out of his way to push Jake, or hit him, or whatever else. I seriously had to be Jakob's nursery bodyguard. I would tell McMeany to keep his hands to himself. And really, I just wanted to do a little "laying on of hands", if you know what I mean.

One would hope that by first grade, the urge to hit for hitting's sake would have grown out of children. Not so, my friends. After the first week of school, the seating chart got changed, so that McMeany was sitting next to Jakob. He started coming home, telling me about how McMeany would hit him, and take his crayons and markers, and draw on him. I asked him if he had ever told his teacher about it, and he said that every time he would raise his hand to tell her, McMeany would stop. Of course.

The final straw was on Tuesday, where Jakob was telling me about how at lunchtime McMeany asked him to share his lunch with him. "McMeany would take a bite, and then me, and then McMeany." I asked if McMeany shared his lunch with Jakob. Nope. And the mother bear alarm went off.

What I wanted to do was go to his house, and kick him in the shin. (Kind of like Brett does at the end of the video below.) What I actually ended up doing was writing an email to Jakob's teacher, telling her the situation, and basically asking if she could move him away from McMeany. She wrote back first thing the next day, telling me that she would move him (whew); then she also told the lunch ladies and music and PE teachers to keep McMeany away from Jake (whew).

That morning, Jakob had been pulling the "I don't feel good, I'd better stay home from school" thing. That afternoon, he was bouncing off the walls, and told me how he told Ila and Katie (our neighbors) about his "really great day".

But. He's still having some meltdowns at school, though, which is super awesome. I guess he had a big old fit on Friday. I asked him about it, and he said he hadn't finished his worksheet before it was time for lunch. CLEARLY a thing to over-react about. So today I made him write an apology to his teacher, saying he'll try to control his actions when he's angry or upset. Like instead of crying and freaking out, that he can just keep his anger inside. Or maybe pout and get emo about it, because he's really good at that. I'm not really sure why he's having meltdowns at school; he'll do that every once in a while at home, but it's only when he's really tired. So maybe he's just really tired at school, even though he's getting a ton of sleep? Hmmm.

It just makes me wonder: is it easier to have the kid that can't cope and gets picked on, or the kid that's the O'Doyle? And, I'm going to go with... neither.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Wow, I've been away for a while. busy. There's so much to tell, and so little time, which is mostly why I've been gone for a while. So, I'll start with...

Pete: He's starting to study for the CIH exam again. Lucky sucker! (Sorry, you get the short end of the reporting stick on Pete. But he has his own blog, so if ever he decides to update it, you'd get a fuller picture of his life.)

Jakob: When Jakob got home from school one day, Pete asked what his favorite part was, and of course he replied "recess". Pete then asked what he did at recess; Jakob's response: "The girls chased me." He got a little shy grin on his face. Then, he put his hands behind his head, elbows sticking out, and said, "And it...was...AWESOME!" His teacher called and said he was a terrific reader, but that he was crying a lot at school. Good times with that. And really he just gets that way when he's tired, so we decided to move him to his own room, so that he can have quiet. (Brock sits and plays with toys in his bed at night, and so while he's not talking to Jakob, he's keeping Jake awake while he makes his toys act things out.) So, I hope that helps him out a bit at school. He also lost tooth #5, so now he looks like a Jack-O-Lantern because one of his humongous top permanent teeth is in the middle of two gaps.

Brock: We went to the fair with my parents. Poor little Brock was SO scared on a dragon ride. Every time he passed the ride attendant he would yell, "Please stop! Please help me! HELLLLP MEEEE!" It was SO cute, and it shouldn't have been, but we laughed and laughed, poor kid. Brock started preschool. I'm thinking he's going to love it. A new Brockism: Brock will ask a question (Mom, is that a blue shirt you're wearing?), I'll answer (Yes, it is.), and then he'll say "Ooooh!" But he says it "Ew" instead of "oh". It's really cute.

Troy: Troy also started preschool. He's loving that a whole lot. I think he's the only one in his class that's not potty trained. The other day I heard him teaching his toy cat (which is really a bear, but it kind of looks like a cat, so whatever) how to pee and poop in the toilet. I'm like, uh, so when are YOU going to do that? He knows what to do, and brings me his diaper after pooping, but just doesn't want to be bothered with it, I guess. Plus, I have no idea when in the world I would find the time to potty train (more on that in a minute). He got moved down to share a room with Brock, and I think he really likes it, and makes him feel like a big boy. He needs all the help feeling like a big boy after our day at the fair; he's all of 36", which means he couldn't ride a bunch of the rides the older boys were going on. He would just cry and cry. Poor Stumpy.

Ivy: I keep wondering where my Baby Ivy has gone, because all of a sudden, I have Little Girl Ivy. She just is so big and important, as opposed to how she used to be little and important. Oh, and she's starting to get into stuff and make messes. Ah, the joys. One of her favorite things to do now is to have Pete chase her around. She runs away, laughing a little growling laugh, like "look how clever I am!" She's full of sass: her first word was "no".

Nat: And then there's me. I should for real write just a post about my craziness, but I'm afraid if I don't do it now I'll never get the chance! Originally I was going to get up at 7:00 this school year, but that quickly turned into 6:00. Uh, 6 a.m. Yep. (And Pete mocks my pain, because he has to be up at 5 a.m.) Sometimes I make it out of bed, and sometimes I snooze it a little, but for the most part I'm up and at 'em. Which is why I start nodding off at 10 p.m. And the night owl in me is ashamed.

I started teaching piano lessons last week, and I had forgotten how much I loved it (I taught in high school). I have 11 students-well, 12 now: Jakob, after last Friday's students, asked if he could take piano as well. So we got him some books, and we've sat down a little bit. My students are amazing-I'm blown away by how much they pick up and how wonderful they are. So fun.

I went to hydrofit with Arin at the Aquatic Center. Hydrofit is kind of like deep water aerobics, with little foot floaties/weights and barbell thingys. And hoo, boy! I was sore while in the pool, but not so much the day after. So I know I got a work out, but it didn't have the lasting percussions, which makes me wonder if it's because it's a no impact workout. (Um, I haven't been back since, but that should change on Monday. Right, Arin?)

I also got up last Saturday, before going to the fair with my cute fam, and went to the temple. I saw one of my old seminary teachers there, which was so fun! I got to say hi to him in the celestial room. Oh, and did I mention it was the 6:00 a.m. session??? Which means I was up at 5:00. Go me! (By the way, getting up early has never, ever, ever been my strong suit. Staying up late? No prob, Bob. But early? Man, it's like I'm a different person these days.) It rocked, because a) it's the temple, and b) I haven't been in who knows how long.

I've mentioned the fair a couple of times. It was way fun, and started off nice and cool, but got hot and muggy and more crowded as the day went on. My mom entered a cross stitch that I had done for her. No prize, but prize schmize. YAY for my cross stitching skillz! We had fun eating the carnie food, and taking the kids on rides, and checking out the animals (Jakob was obsessed with all the animals' poop), and watching random people. (Pete and I saw a pretty sweet mullet, where the guy had curled the front part back and it was super hairsprayed in place; it reminded me of the late 80s/early 90s bangs that girls would do, where they would spray them straight up and curl back just the very top part.)

I finished reading the Sherlock Holmes stories, the ones that are 20-ish pages long. I LOVED them. I've also been trying to pretty up my yard, we're refinancing our house, we paid off a debt, and I've been working on Personal Progress (leaders can get their medallions; who knew?). And I taught Troy's preschool on Tuesday, and 7 cute energetic 3-year-olds is a LOT to handle. Well, for me, anyway. (Truth be told, I'm really glad my next turn isn't for another 7 weeks!)

So...yeah. I think that's about it.