Sunday, September 25, 2011

Earwigs and Junk

Remember the rafts Jason and the kids made last week? Ethan wanted to take them in the bath with him on Monday. He had a blast playing and trying to float his toy animals on them...until 2 earwigs came out from the sticks! He was horrified and screaming (and can you blame him?) until I came to the rescue. The rafts have been downgraded to outside-only playthings.

Our next door neighbors, the Garcias, have become good friends over the past few weeks. We enjoyed some long playdates with them this week. One at our favorite park (Merlin Olsen Park) and one at the Willow Park Zoo. Their family moved this weekend. We're sad to see them go, but very grateful for new friends. They really helped make the kids' transition from our West Jordan neighborhood a much happier one. Ethan and Ellie adore them; Ethan calls them the "Lots of Friends" or "Lots of Kids".

We went on a nature adventure around the boardwalk at Second Dam on Friday. The leaves are starting to change up the canyon and the air was chilly when we first arrived. The kids had a blast finding bugs and looking for fish. We've been here a couple of times before, but always on crowded weekends. It was really nice to enjoy the area without a million people around. Fall is my favorite time of year and we have had gorgeous weather lately!

Here is some good news: we have renters for our West Jordan home! The bad news is that everything fell into place late Friday afternoon and they wanted to move in on Saturday. I have spent a lot of time purging closets and packing over the past few months so we thought we were very ready to throw a few things into boxes and quickly clean the house to have it ready for the renters. We even made plans to meet cousins at the park at 1:00. Yeah, that is NOT how things went.

Our amazing parents and brothers came to help (thank you, thank you!) and a dear neighbor stopped by to check in on us and ended up helping out for several hours. We realized after a couple of hours that we no longer had kids running through the house and when we went to find them they were playing at another fantastic neighbor's house. We are so blessed with incredible family and friends!

We had to move everything into the garage until we close on our house in Logan (this week!) and we literally filled the garage. It looks like an episode of Hoarders in there! I could not believe how much stuff we have. I am feeling overwhelmed and a little disgusted with the excess. I kept thinking about the Little House on the Prairie books and how quickly and simply they were able to pack up their house each time they moved. None of this hours and hours of toil and labor for a dozen people. Pa took apart the stove and put the bedding in the wagon, Ma carefully wrapped the dishes and her China Shepherdess. They all loaded into the wagon and off they went. As for us, we were finally on the road around 5:30 last night. Yuck.

I'm sure it won't be as bad once we're settled into a home (it seriously didn't look like that much stuff when it was in our house!) but I definitely feel the need to simplify even more than we already have. I had a picture here of how our garage looks, but it's too embarrassing to show. Plus I didn't want anyone to think we're advertising for a yard sale.

Ellie requested a trip to Bear Lake before it gets too cold, so we went for an excursion there this afternoon. After much frustration trying to find a place to play (we didn't bring any money and all of the beaches were fee areas) we finally pulled off at the side of the road in an area without No Trespassing signs. Tempers were high and the car was full of grumpy people. It's amazing what a little fresh air and rock-throwing can do! Many, many rocks were tossed and skipped. Jason invented a new game (try to throw a rock and hit it with a second rock before it lands in the water...easier said than done). The kids and I drew in our nature journals and Jason scoured the beach for treasures. He found an old rusty engine, a part from a power pole, and a keychain.
We left the beach a much happier group. We did discover that Ethan gets car sick, however.
Not fun.

In short, I am feeling grateful for so many answered prayers. This has been one of the most stressful times in our lives and I am relieved and humbled to see everything falling in to place.

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