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  • Elijah Ricks

The Old Man and the C

We made this week as hectic as possible with lots of doctor stuff, preparation for our trip out West, and the passing of a friend.


Kira took over our room on Saturday afternoon to work on organizing the boys' clothes that were either too small, out-of-season, or superfluous. We had totes full of clothes that we inherited, but they were just stacked in a corner waiting for someone to go through and see what could be used and what should be given away.

She got it done over the next few days, and so it's nice to have out of the way.


Avey and Jesse had a good time working on some clay art projects together. They made some rings, and even made one for Merritt (who got it stuck on his middle finger immediately).


I took the kids to the library, and then we made a quick stop by the vet's to pick up a pill for Apollo (routine), before going back downtown for a candy store Avey really likes. It was a standard evening of dinner and bedtime routine. Jesse and Merritt were really good buddies, even choosing to shower together, and Jesse helped Merritt keep track of what parts still needed cleaning and which ones he'd already done. Merritt is slowly getting more independent in things like that, but I'd like to continue nudging him along.


Jesse's knee is getting much better - he can now use a normal bandage to cover up the wound.


We had a thunderstorm that night that woke Merritt, but the storm passed fairly quickly, so we were all able to get back to bed.


On Sunday, I got the kids ready for church and then baked cookies and made lunch. In the afternoon, Hannah, the younger two boys, Apollo, and I went to the dog park while the weather was pleasant. Kira kept working on the clothes project, and Avey cleaned out the rat cage - it needs to be cleaned out about every other day so that their smell is not overwhelming.


Hannah went home after the park and the rest of us had dinner and family night. In the evening, Jesse and Merritt wanted to rearrange their room to push their beds next to each other. They seem to think it would be like a sleepover party or something. I didn't want to rearrange the entire room just to have them not sleep for the next several days, so Kira and they agreed to just put their mattresses next to each other on the floor. Naturally, they had trouble falling asleep that night. Jesse wanted things back to normal by Tuesday.


Monday, Kira took Avey to school and then went to work. I cut the grass, line trimmed, and trimmed the hedges before picking up Avey. Merritt desperately wanted to go to a park, but nobody else did, and so he agreed to play in the kid pool in the backyard, even though it was only in the 70s. The older boys rode their bikes together, and Avey holed up in her room. Hannah and Avey and I watched a scary movie while Kira stayed at work late.


Kira woke up early and couldn't sleep, and so she took Avey to school even though it was my turn. I got up to help with breakfast, and then picked up Avey to give her a ride to the park to which the class walked for their daily activities. I had a doctor checkup right after that, and went in fasting so that I could get the blood draw done. I then came home for a late breakfast while Kira took the boys to their last swimming lesson of the summer. I took Apollo to the park to walk around while we waited for Avey to be done with her activities, and then we went home.


I worked and tried to keep Merritt entertained. Kira was busy trying to figure out a complicated issue with work, but she got it done. I took Avey, Jesse, Merritt, and Apollo to the park. Hannah met us there. Jesse rode his bike around and Merritt tried the scooter. We parted ways with Hannah and then got ice cream on the way home.


Kira had an evening meeting, so she did what she could to get the boys ready for bed and then joined the meeting over the computer. I spent most of that time trying to keep them from finding her. Each one of the boys asked me where she was, and I reminded them to leave her alone during her meeting. Luckily, she was done in time to tell them goodnight.


I had a dissertation meeting to join on Wednesday morning, and Avey had opted to miss the first two classes for the day, so my alarm woke me up later, but still it felt too early. I felt barely coherent during the meeting, and then took Avey in late. I helped with breakfast, and Kira spent most of her morning on the phone trying to put out fires from her calling. The bedridden sister in the branch has been especially ill, and there was suspicion that she might not last the night, and so as Relief Society President, she had a lot of work to do.


I got a call that the doctor wanted to talk more about my blood test results. I knew that was bad news. In brief, I need to be on medicine now for my cholesterol. I was in a rough mood the rest of the day with the combination of too little sleep and the doctor's news.


Carver was invited for a sleepover that night, and so Kira took all three boys to hang out at the house. They live right on the beach, and so the kids had a great time.

I tried to nap before doing some work. When Kira brought the two younger boys home, we fed them and got them ready for bed. Jesse was very jealous that Carver got to go on a sleepover, and so he really wanted to stay up later with us older kids that night. I told him that we were going to watch Hamlet, and he wanted to try it out with us. He pretended to get it, and I gave him some rough translations of what the characters were saying. He lasted through the whole thing before going to bed. The next morning, he wanted to watch it again, probably enjoying feeling like he was grown up. He made it about halfway before giving up.


Thursday felt like a real chaotic mess, as we were feeling the need to get everything ready for our trip out West. I got up to take Avey to school, but she was still asleep, so we went late. Hannah and I planned to play racquetball that morning at the YMCA, but she didn't sleep well, so she canceled. I though I would go anyway and just do the treadmill, but I realized that I had left my phone at home, and the only way I can justify using the treadmill is if I can watch shows while I do it, so I decided to just call it a loss. I went home and fed boys before working and then starting on the packing and trip prep.


It was Avey's last day of summer school, and so they were planning on walking to a Dairy Queen, but because of Avey's toe, we didn't want to make her hobble along for 30 minutes. I picked her up and dropped her off at the restaurant, and then went back home to keep working. We had expected Carver to come home from the sleepover in the late morning, but they were having such a good time that he stayed until the late afternoon. I picked up Avey from the restaurant after everyone else had left, and then Kira took her to an appointment in the afternoon. I worked on packing and keeping the younger boys busy. Jesse did most of his packing, and I worked on laundry. Avey took Jesse and Apollo on a walk before bed.


The boys woke us up Friday morning because Apollo had tossed his cookies on our recliner. That wasn't fun, but it cleaned up pretty easily. Kira had actually just gotten up before that. She'd been thinking about the bedridden sister, and then she got the message on her phone that she had passed away at some point during the night. She's been working on offering support while also trying to get us ready for the road tomorrow.


The rest of today is going to be last preparation for our trip - I need to cut the grass again, and we need to get all of our crap compiled. I also have another dissertation meeting to do this afternoon, which is perfect timing (#sarcasm). We're glad that Hannah will be here to keep Apollo from eating the rats, and saving us some stress about taking care of the plants and whatnot while we're gone.


I'll try to make a post next weekend, but our schedule will be even less predictable than usual, so we'll see... In the meantime, let's hope that these gas prices don't bankrupt us for this trip!

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