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  • Writer's pictureElijah Ricks


We made a lot of fun changes and upgrades this week. It started on Monday when our Chromecast came in the mail. It's a device that plugs into the television and lets us use our phones to "cast" video directly to it. I bought it because after we got Disney+, we needed to plug in a laptop to the t.v. every time we wanted to watch something from it. Also, Hannah has Hulu, but we had to plug her laptop in every time we wanted to watch, so this way, we can just use our phones like we live in the 21st Century. It's been so convenient, I don't know why we didn't do this months ago.

Kira had 3 clients on Monday night, including a new one (which takes longer to meet with the first time), so she was gone for most of the afternoon and evening. The building where her new office is has now been bought, but the buyer is a good friend in her branch, and it's also Hannah's boss. He's moving his business in, but he's assured Kira that she can stay, too. She'll be moving to the ground floor, though, and he's going to paint it. It should be a nice arrangement.

It's seemed like Hakan was a stranger this week, because he spent basically all of Monday and Tuesday playing with the new neighbor girl who is his age. It turns out that she has a step-sister who is their same age also, so when she came over for a few days, he got double the female attention. The poor guy has seemed a little bored now that both girls are gone for a few more days, spending time with their other parents.

Tuesday was forecast to be very warm, and so we discussed the possibility of going to the beach. It was not a great time for it, because I am feeling pretty behind in my Roosevelt work, and dealing with the mess is never fun. Also, I had scheduled Apollo for a veterinarian appointment at 4 that day, so we needed to be home in enough time to be clean and ready for that. Fortunately for our schedule, our neighbor who has a pool offered for us to use it that day while she was gone. The kids were very excited, and quickly threw on their swim stuff to head over. It was fun, but the water had not yet warmed up with the air, so that it was very cold.

The funny thing was that after we all got out of the pool and dried off, some of the kids thought we were still going to the beach that day. We heard from our other neighbors who made a beach attempt that there was a 2-hour wait to get on the beach. Apparently everybody in the area heard the weather forecast and had the same idea.

Apollo's appointment at the vet was ok. He was very nervous there, but the vet said he looks very healthy otherwise, so he took some blood and gave him an antibiotic to deal with anything he may have caught. He started acting more normal that night, beginning to eat his dry food again, and he had a little more energy. When we got his blood work back, we found that there was really nothing going on. His liver readings were a little unusual, but not enough to worry, so we're still not sure what has been up. He is eating better, and his energy is getting back to normal, too, so we think he'll be okay. It's just weird not knowing what it was or what we could change.

On Wednesday, Avey and I took the afternoon to go to a city about 20 minutes away and get her sized for a guitar. She's been thinking of trying it out for a while, and I thought I would hop on that while the interest was there and we had a little money. The store was very helpful in talking us through some options, but of course they had only one left-handed acoustic, so she and I got her a chord book for lefties and got me a reference sheet for my playing. We ran some other errands while in town, and then went home and bought her a guitar online that night. It arrived yesterday, and looks great. It's an electric-acoustic, thin body (which felt a little better for her, and tends to be easier for women to reach around, given their, uh...anatomy). She's working on learning chords and learning some other basics so far.

Kira took the boys out for an adventure one afternoon and had a grand time, finding some old houses, and enjoying the beautiful trail.

Avey's had a fun little hobby since Hakan's birthday. She gave him her huge teddy bear that he's coveted, and so now every day she puts him in some new pose for him to find. Sometimes he'll be in Merritt's chair, watching a show. Others, he's having a chat with a friend on the phone:

As far as projects for the week, I didn't really get to do much until the weekend. Friday was packed with stupid phone calls again and Roosevelt work, but I got a pretty good amount done. Saturday was a nice day, so I spent the morning trying to break up a lot of the old shed materials so that the trash would take them. The younger boys came to help, so that was fun.

We got a good chunk done, but it's going to take a while to get through it all.

I built a socket organizer this week and painted (with Avey's help) and labeled it one evening while watching television with the girls. I then organized a cabinet in the garage for the rest of my tools, which has been nice.

In the afternoon on Saturday, I finally got to build some more shelves in the garage (using a lot more old-shed material), so that we finally have the space for all of the crap that is out there. Now I just need to make some repairs to the walls and get them ready to paint (I hate the beige color).

While I was doing that, Kira took the kids to ride their bikes in a huge parking lot. Carver even agreed to ride his bike, and did awesome! I wonder if he's just nervous that our street is not as level as he would like, so that he can lose control of his speed. Anyway, we are gearing up to go again today, but of course I found that I have a flat tire...

Carver took on a yard project for me this week, moving all of the unused bricks we have behind the shed and carefully stacking them. That was a big project for the little guy, but he did it and got paid for his trouble.

I also finally got around to caulking all of the seams on my new shed to keep out moisture and any smaller bugs. That's nice to have done, but now I need to touch up all of the paint where I did it...

I got word from the university that they are planning on opening campus for the fall semester, with a few adjustments in place. I'm not sure how I'm going to teach a lecture with a mask over my face, but we'll see what happens.

We expect this next week to be a lot more of the same, though we keep finding surprises all of the time.

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