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  • Elijah Ricks

Beating the Heat

Kira finally had enough on Monday, so she took off for Hawaii. (Sort of) Just kidding: She had been planning on this trip to visit her older sister down there for some time. I drove her to the train station on Monday morning and then came back to manage the kiddos. She first flew to Colorado to meet up with her mom, and then they flew to San Francisco before going to Hawaii. It sounds like she’s having a pretty good time so far, and we look forward to her return later this week. 

We’ve been doing a lot of hanging out here at home:


Ha ha. Things have been busy and hectic, as one might imagine. Whereas Avey has basically mastered the bike (she’s just getting familiar with working the gears now), Carver and Hakan are now trying to catch up. Carver is generally risk-averse, so he’s been a little slower to stretch his boundaries, but made some great progress each day. He finally seemed to figure out balance:


…and then he worked on getting himself going:


 Now his task is to figure out how to stop more gracefully. He seems to just sort of fall over when he wants to stop, so we’re now working on gently squeezing the brakes and then catching himself on one side. In any case, he’s come much further than I expected in a shorter time, so I’m thrilled. Avey is anxious to have him master the bike so that she can have a real riding buddy. She’ll go out for a leisurely ride about 3 times a day on her own.


Hakan is progressing even more slowly. He is more willing to practice, but then he wants to stop after just a few minutes. He’s working on balance right now, but getting better with each time, so he’ll get there.

In our efforts to keep entertained, we’ve played video games, and made trips to stores and parks. Unfortunately, it finally got hot this week, with temperatures getting into the high 80s and humidity through the roof, so that we can hardly breathe outside. That’s pushed us to be a little more innovative. Hannah took the older two to a library event on Tuesday afternoon, and then she took Avey to the library on Wednesday night for a Stranger Things party in preparation for the release of season 3 this week. They dressed in 80s style, and had a pretty good time.


The heat has really complicated things as the kids are hesitant to play outside, at least for very long, and I’m just not up for keeping track of them all at the beach without Kira. The kids finally talked me into trying a water slide in the backyard one afternoon, and that quickly expanded into filling the kiddie pool, and then I remembered I had some painting tarps that would get slippery pretty easily, so we turned the backyard into a mini waterpark.


They did it again the next day, after all that fun.


I’ve been doing mostly fine, although it’s been rough at times as I have work things piling up, but not much time or energy to get to them. On top of that, Hannah and the kids helped me on Tuesday to start staining our fence. I bought the stain a while ago, but then there was rain pretty much every day. Finally seeing my window of opportunity, I talked the boys into helping with the task. Anyway, we got about halfway (the sides facing the street) before running out of stain, and I think I did some serious damage to my shoulder. You may recall that I’d been doing physical therapy for about 6 weeks to see if it would help with some periodic numbness to my forearm and shoulder joint pain. It seemed to help some, but to make a long story short, because the symptoms are persisting, I am scheduled to get an MRI this week to see if we can figure out what’s up. While doing the staining on the fence, my hand went fully numb a couple of times, and my shoulder has been much more painful since then, so I’ve been having a hard time managing that.

I’ve also been staying up too late with the girls, watching movies and such, only to have the boys wake me up for minor issues much too early. My energy was really low for a couple of days, but I did the responsible thing and went to bed early last night. I feel much better today, so I’ll try to keep doing that.


Naturally, Hannah’s been a huge help, and Avey is doing awesome. She saw how badly I was doing one of the days and offered to feed the kids lunch while I napped. She also fed the kids breakfast yesterday so that I could rest a little longer, which really helped. I’m so lucky to have such a great kid!

This next week is probably going to be a lot of the same until Kira gets back, and then she’ll whip us all into shape. I’m sure she’ll need some recovery time, though, as she readjusts to our time zone and tries to recover some energy she’s no doubt exerting paying attention to all of her nieces and nephews. Her birthday is next week, so we’ll make sure to give her a solid welcome home!

#Happenings

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