Phew. It has been quite the busy week. I feel like I have barely stopped to take a breath in days. And while it has been a good one, I must admit that I am rather disgruntled that it has put me behind on my goal of daily blogging, which even birthing a baby did not do. Here are a few of the things that have been keeping the MeyPfan family busy:
* VBX. As I mentioned earlier, our church does what I referred to as an "uber-VBS." By that I mean that we had roughly 700 children attend this week. Couple that with the roughly 300 volunteers, and attendance hovered just under 1000 each day, except Tuesday, when we cleared 1000 (no idea why that happened just on Tuesday). Chasing 4-year-old boys around all week proved to be quite exhausting. My little princess Bryn was not a big fan of being the only girl in her class, and Shay was distraught at being in the 2-year-old class because she knew that Bryn was in Mommy's class. The solution? Shay moved to the 4-year-old class halfway through the day on Tuesday. She was an absolute champ for the rest of the week, keeping up with the big kids in every way and even developing quite the crush on one of the 4-year-old boys. We kept busy all week long with tons of crafts, games, a bounce-house, the playground (including a water day), storytime, skits, songs, snacks, and silliness. All the nursery workers totally fell in love with Liam, who was such a good boy all week. He probably held up the best of all of us, as the girls and I continued to get more and more tired each day. One other funny side note is that after we all wore our matching VBX shirts on the first day, the girls then insisted on dressing like me every day for the rest of the week (which they have never done before), so I had two little clones in my class all week.
* Catching up with an old friend. Way back when I was a college student working summers as a camp counselor, I met a 13-year-old girl named Anne. We kept in touch over the years and always had so much fun together over the summers at camp. I saw her again every summer until she was 16, when I told her that I had been hired at her school (Zionsville HS) as an English teacher for that fall. At ZCHS, we stayed close, and she was my student aide during her junior and senior years. She came to my wedding. We kept in touch sporadically over her college years, but my departure from ZCHS and early years with kids were quite the distraction for me, as was college for her. But she got married about a year ago and is now back in Indy, and she and her husband are now expecting their first child. Through the wonders of Facebook :), we have reconnected. She and I had lunch together a few weeks back and had such a great time that we decided we needed to get our husbands together as well. She had known Ben pretty well during the camp and ZCHS days and was excited to see him again, and I was excited to get to meet her Clint. So they came over for dinner on Wednesday, and we had such a great time getting caught up, introducing them to our kids, and talking about their impending arrival. Their baby is due in a little over a month. so it will be very close in age to Liam. They have decided not to find out the gender, but we're now hoping that it will be a boy so he and Liam can be BFF. :)
* Water park fun. Our church rented out a local water park on Friday night for all the VBX volunteers and their families. Of course, we were all wiped by Friday, so all the adults looked a little glassy-eyed, but the kids seemed to have energy to spare! :) It rained in the afternoon and was chilly and overcast while we were there, but again, this didn't seem to slow the kids down at all. Ben was out of town (more on that in a second), so I was faced with the challenge of how to wrangle three small children at a water park where they must all be within arm's reach at all times. The solution involved the aide of several dear friends. I dropped Liam off with our friends Jason and Sarah, and he "played" with their little boy Kingston for the evening. Then my friend (and former student) Angie (who is now all grown up and looking for a teaching job of her own) came with me and the girls to the water park. Bryn loved this arrangement, as she thinks that Angie is about the coolest person who ever lived, so much so that she insisted on waiting at the front door for roughly a half an hour before Angie arrived. We had a great time swimming with the girls and only got out when their teeth were chattering so badly that they could no longer protest that they were "f-f-f-fine." The event ran from 7:00 to 9:00, and then we had a half hour drive home, and then we had to get Liam, and then get the girls ready for bed.... and all told, it was at least 10:30 by the time the girls got in bed after our very, very busy week, so everyone was definitely ready for a night of good sleep.
* Concert in Chicago. My wanna-be-hippie husband took a half-day at his job in corporate America on Friday to drive up to Chicago to attend the opening night of Phish's most recent concert tour. He went with yet another of my former students (seems to have been a big week for that), who has been a good friend of his ever since we lived down the street from each other in Zville. With the birth of Liam and Ben's adjustment to his new position at work, it had been a while since Ben and Tyler had been able to hang out, and I think they enjoyed the car ride to and from Chicago almost as much as they enjoyed the concert itself. It sounds like they had a really great time getting caught up. Plus they fit in a round of disc golf in Lafayette on the way there, and Ben has been raving about how great the set list at the concert was. Of course, Ben also had to take Advil as soon as he woke up this morning for all of his aches and pains and commented that he *might* be getting too old for the whole concert thing. But he and Tyler are looking forward to attending two more Phish shows locally in August.
* Swim lessons. Bryn started them this morning. She has done the parent/child classes before, but this summer, she's taking the ones where she's in the water with a teacher for the first time. Some of our friends did them through Indy Parks last summer and suggested that we sign up with them this summer, so we decided to go for it. A bonus was that the same location offers parent/child classes for younger kids at the same time, so we can take the whole family and Ben and I can alternate weeks with one of us watching Bryn in the water and Liam by the side while the other gets in the water with Shay. Shay's class doesn't start until next week, so I stayed home this morning to allow her to sleep in while Ben took Bryn for a little daddy/daughter QT. She had a great time, aside from when she "dipped" in the water (meaning accidentally went under.)
* A quick visit. Both of my parents have asked me recently if we might be visiting Peoria this summer. I initially said yes, as we have not been to visit any family at all since Liam's birth but would like to get him to see both sides of the family at some point this summer. But then I looked at our calendar and realized that while we had signed up for swim lessons under the premise that they "only last for six weeks," that does actually encompass most of the summer. So I suggested that they might want to look at dates to come here instead, and when my dad did so, he realized that he is actually booked most weekends as well. On about Thursday of this week, he realized that that if we wanted to see each other before August, it would actually have to be this weekend. So he and my stepmom Diane drove over for the day today. It was a quick visit, just a few hours of grandparents play time with the kids and then out to dinner with my sister, but really great to see them nonetheless.
* Dogsitting. Our friends Cathy and Eric have been off on a fun-filled vacation for the last week, so their dog Fina has been staying with us. She gets along well with Dagny and Tela, so there aren't any issues there. The only problem we've had is that she's on a bit of a different potty schedule than our dogs, so there have been some pooping incidents, but she's a very sweet and loving dog. I don't think we're really up for being a three-dog house full-time, but then, most days I'm not convinced that we're up for being a two-dog house (or even a one-dog house), so that's probably the least notable thing that's happened this week. :)
* Phone replacement. As I mentioned in a previous post, my phone bit the dust last week. It wsa pretty much a week-long battle to get a new one and get it working. It took four separate trips to two different Verizon stores, as well as reading my less-than-helpful User's Manual and spending hours searching for help on their website. Through all of that, the best tech support that I got actually came from my own wonderful husband. I also had to wait for five days for FedEx to deliver a new phone (because apparently, I can purchase a new phone when I walk in to any Verizon location, but they can't replace my broken phone with one of the ones they have on hand). These four trips to Verizon involved one instance of Ben watching them at home while I went to the store, one instance of Ben keeping them placated with a movie in the car while I went to the store, one instance of Ben watching them in the car while I talked the guys at the counter, and one instance of me attempting to control them in the store while talking to the guys at the counter (which was by far the worst). In its death, my phone also fried two phone batteries. The transition involved plugging three separate Blackberries into various chargers, outlets, and computers with tons of different cords, yet still resulted in the loss of umpteen contact numbers, as well as photos and music files. In the end, though, I now have a phone that works, and I am incredibly thrilled to again be "on the grid."
* Catching up. It's not just the blog that has been neglected in the past few days of busyness. I put away six loads of laundry before Dad and Diane arrived this morning, and there are two more in the washer and dryer right now. Not to mention the many stacks of stuff that I put away in an effort to tidy before their arrival and the dozens more that are still waiting for me. I've already told Ben that pretty much all I want out of tomorrow is to sit on my butt on the couch with the computer to attempt to make a dent in the massive amount of emails, photo uploading, budget updating, and other random tasks that I have been neglecting. If you haven't gotten a comment from me on your blog for a while, that's probably because I haven't been reading it.... it has been several weeks, if not a a full month, since I have found the time to read many of my friends' blogs, and I'm really hoping to remedy this soon.
With all of that, I've been feeling rather sleep deprived this week, so I am now off to remedy that....