16 January 2011

Hola, como estas?

Last night around 11pm Eli started crying. Steph went to check on him and brought him down a few minutes later. His cheeks were rosy and he was complaining of his stomach and head hurting. His temperature was 102 underarm. We gave him some ibuprofen and then got him back to bed. He was able to sleep the rest of the night, but he had another fever this morning. I ended up staying home from church with him today while Steph went with the rest. This seems a common theme once the winter weather hits. With 5 little boys, it seems almost inevitable that one will be sick come the weekend.

Steph and I were scheduled for interviews with our ecclesiastical leaders today after church in order to renew our temple recommend (a piece of paper that allows continued access to our temples, the closest being in Palmyra), a process that takes place only once every 2 years. This is a neat experience, as it is a time to reflect on what I believe, how I am doing with the promises I have made to myself and God, and what I can do to improve. I drove Eli over to the church and then helped to shuffle the rest of the kids into the van while Steph had her interview. I plugged my keys in to get the van warmed up. Then it was my turn. Afterwards, I said goodbye to Steph and the boys and headed back to my car. It was then that I realized my keys were still in the ignition driving the van home (and Steph’s were in her purse, which was also in the van). Steph was already on her way home. I was stuck. I said a little prayer and found Brother Steffen in the parking lot. He was jumping his wife’s van and said I should check inside. I found Brother Vaisey inside, who asked if I needed help. I told him what was going on and, without hesitation, he offered to drive me home to get the keys and then back to the church to get my car. I was amazed at his generosity. It would have been such a hassle for Steph to get all the kids back in the van to drive me back to the church for the car. I’m grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who puts people around us to help answer our prayers.

Steph’s birthday was last Monday. She already wrote about the morning. We finished celebrations when I got home from work. I had made her a cake the day before, so I hurry and finished decorating and then we sang to her. Steph always asks the boys what theme they want for their birthday cake and then decorates it accordingly. So somewhat jokingly, for her birthday, she said she wanted “Swiss Family Robinson.” I am not the most creative type, so I got some of the boys blocks and “built” a block house in the middle of the Bundt cake. I thought it was cute. The boys helped me on Sunday to make her some birthday cards. One was a set of coupons for things like 5 kisses or 7 hugs or helping to take out the trash or unload the dishwasher. She can ask the boys for help and then punch out the used parts of the coupons. The boys came up with the things they wanted to do and helped write them on the paper. Steph also requested Bruce R. McKonkie’s “Doctrinal New Testament Commentary,” which is a 3 volume set of the New Testament scriptures followed by commentary, all together in 1 place. She has really enjoyed reading it so far.

After we got the kids down for bed, we decided to sign up for a free 1 month trial of Netflix. We have really enjoyed watching movies that are streamed instantly through our Wii. Steph and I both really enjoy movies based on true events and so watched one about some African American boys that were accused of raping a white girl in the south in the 1930s and another about an African American mom in south Texas around 2000 that is accused of selling drugs at a school and sentenced to prison, but is ultimately acquitted. It is so sad that people experience these things. I watch them and think how lucky I am to have all the blessings I have in my life.

This week there has also been a lot of snowfall. One day it snowed about 8 inches, and then the rest of the week it is an inch here and 3 inches there. There is probably 1 to 1.5 feet outside right now. It has also been quite cold out – another good reason to stay in and enjoy a nice movie together.

I have been reading the biography of the prophet of our church, Thomas S. Monson, entitled, “To the Rescue.” It is so neat to learn about his life and to see what things he did that brought him to where he is today.

Kolby ended up missing the bus one of the days earlier this week. Steph is supposed to take him out 5 minutes early and has been doing this. The other day the bus was really early, and by the time he got out there, it was already taking off. Steph wasn’t too happy because now she had to get all the boys ready so she could drive Kolby over to the school. She called and spoke with the bus company. They apologized and will try to work with the driver so that doesn’t happen anymore.

The boys go to a reading time at the library each week. While there, they are able to get new books each week. Steph and I have decided to have me again try to speak mostly to the boys in Spanish. It has been fun to do that this week. To help with that, she also got lots of Spanish books from the library. It has been fun reading those with the boys this week.

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