13 February 2011

Our Week

Well, we’ve had quite the week. Michael got home from his conference late Monday night, and I was relieved to have him back, but then Tuesday he was at work late trying to catch up on everything after being gone and didn’t get home until about 8:30 that night (I was supposed to work at the family history center that night, but someone else ended up covering for me). So, this week has been a little long with Michael playing catch-up at work – I think we needed a vacation to recover from his conference.    :)

I got the invitations sent out for Courtland’s birthday party – he turned two while Michael was out of town, so we’re going to have his party this week. And Kolby and Lijah have been busy getting their valentines ready for school. Plus it seems we’ve spent a lot of time at stores this week – besides the normal grocery shopping, we had to return to Wal Mart down in Victor to pick up Courtland’s snow boot that he had lost when we were there over the previous weekend, and I’ve been shopping around all week for a new coat for Kolby – the zipper broke on his, and although it’s not really the right season to be buying a coat (I went to 7 stores before finding one that would fit him), the winter here doesn’t seem to be letting up anytime soon so he needs something warm. We ended up finding a nice one on a good sale at Kohls that is a little big for him now, so it should last at least through the end of next winter too.

It’s also been a week of appointment for us. On Wednesday morning Lijah had his 6-year-old checkup at the pediatrician’s, and Courtland had his 2-year checkup. Both boys are healthy, and Lijah is indeed colorblind (which we already knew). The doctor said he is red-green colorblind, which is the most common type. Courtland was very brave when he had to have his foot pricked for a lead test and they couldn’t get enough blood – they pricked his toe three times and finally got it on the fourth try on his finger – and he never even flinched the whole time. Then that night we did volleyball for the activity days girls, which I had fun with.

Then on Thursday morning Kolby and Eli had their regular dentist appointments. The appointment was an hour before we usually go to story time at the library, so I knew that probably wouldn’t give us enough time to get done at the dentist’s office, drop Kolby off at school, and make it to the library in time. I decided that we’d go quite early to the dentist to see if they happened to be able to get us in early and we might be able to go to the library still. So, about 45 minutes before the appointment we were all ready to go and I started to back out of the garage and accidentally backed out at a slight angle, which was enough to catch one of the back tires in the piled up snow at the side of the driveway. That turned out to be a big mistake. I couldn’t pull the minivan forward at all (because we can’t drive up our driveway without getting a running start – I usually do this by backing up the driveway of the neighbor across the street and hitting the gas to get going fast enough to make it up), so we were stuck. I got the shovel and started digging enough of the snow out enough to back up the car and get it straightened out, but when I tried backing up it didn’t do any good. So I tried going forward again, and finally got the car to turn all the way around: I turned the wheels in the correct direction, and the van slid on the ice until it was almost facing straight down to the bottom of the driveway. But it wasn’t able to turn quite tight enough to make it past the large pile of snow at the bottom corner of the driveway that has piled up from the snowplows that pass our house. I drove straight into that pile of snow, and got stuck again. I shoveled out again, two more times, before I was able to make it the last couple of feet to the end of the driveway. Yes, it took me 45 minutes to get out of our driveway, and we were late to the dentist appointment. Luckily they still got the boys in, and their teeth look great, as always. And the boys enjoyed getting their prizes afterwards like they always do. So, that was a fun start to the day. Then the boys had their piano lessons that afternoon, which went well. Eli is now starting to play some of the songs that Kolby was playing when we first moved here, so that’s pretty fun.

By that night I was glad that I didn’t have anywhere to go as soon as Michael walked in the door, and we were able to enjoy our family night that we’d rescheduled because Michael had been out of town on Monday night. We built a fire in the fireplace (our second time this year), enjoyed hot chocolate, and took turns choosing songs to sing together – I think that’s one of our new favorite activities: nice and relaxing.

On Friday my computer had issues. A fake antivirus program took over and starting sending me all sorts of pop-ups and messages saying that my computer was infected and I needed to purchase their software to fix it. I knew it wasn’t a real virus, but it was annoying, especially since it wouldn’t allow me to even use the internet browser because it claimed that the website I was trying to open (Google) was infected. So I ran some anti-malware software that I happened to have on the computer already, and it ran a scan for hours before it finished and said that it had found one malware program. I selected it and told it to delete it, and it said it needed to restart the computer to finish the process, but when I shut down the computer it wouldn’t turn on again. I then used Michael’s laptop to post my problem on a forum online, and someone suggested that I try opening it in safe mode, but I wasn’t able to do that either. I wasn’t really panicking, though, since I’d been pretty good about backing up my computer files pretty regularly (the last full backup was within the last month or two), so I knew that even if the computer did completely crash, I would only lose the things from the last little while, plus I had posted the most important photos to our blog so at least those photos of the boys wouldn’t be lost. Although I’d hate to lose any pictures of the boys, I was thinking it could be a lot worse. So, this morning I took my external hard drive that I back up the computer to and tried to open it on the laptop, but was not having success at all – I don’t know if it’s a compatibility issue because my computer has XP and Michael’s has Vista, or what, but the idea of my backup possibly failing and me loosing all the genealogy, family photos and ancestor photos, videos, etc. did start me into a bit of a panic. Luckily, today at church someone offered to help – he said he’s dealt with this kind of problem before and almost every time he is able to resolve it without loosing anything by removing the computer’s hard drive, installing it in another computer, and cleaning it up before putting it back. He sounded pretty confident, and I guess it turns out he has a computer business, so I’m hopeful it will work out.

So, Friday night at 5:30 Michael called to say he was getting done with work, and I told him that after the boys and I had spent hours that afternoon thoroughly cleaning and re-organizing the study where they keep their books, games, legos, puzzles, crayons, etc. (it looks really good now, and I took all the games that they don’t use as much and put them in a different closet downstairs, so now there’s a lot less potential for big messes if a toddler happens to feel like emptying the game shelves in the study closet in the future). But after cleaning all afternoon and finally putting the little boys down for a very late nap (not until the older boys were getting home after school), when Michael called I was sitting on the couch, not having eaten lunch yet or even changed out of my pajamas, and using the laptop to search for solutions on how to get the computer up and running again, and I realized that my plan for dinner that night wasn’t going to work out since we had less of the leftovers from the other night than I had thought. I jokingly asked Michael if he wanted to go on a date, and he laughed at the thought of being able to find a babysitter at that late time. So, he was very surprised when he got home half an hour later to find that I’d found a babysitter (we sure are lucky to have a couple babysitters that seem to often be available when we call), showered, gotten dressed, and was getting my hair done. We really needed a date night – it feels like it’s been forever. So, we had a lot of fun. We went to dinner at Chipotle, then went to a clothing store where I was going to use the money I got from Christmas for some new clothes, but the store was closed, so we went to another store where Michael used a gift card from Christmas to get three new shirts that look very nice on him. Then we went to a discount movie theater and saw the Narnia movie that came out a while ago. It was fun (although it was probably our least favorite of the series so far, only because they changed the plot around so much from the book), but it was a fun movie. And it was just really nice to get out, and to do something spontaneous like that. It seems that spontaneity can be rather difficult when babysitters are necessary. So that was a good break.

Saturday morning Michael had a training meeting at the church which he said was very good. One thing they suggested was using the church handbook not only for church callings, but also using it for the family, so we ended up reading the first few chapters of that together last night – Michael read that while I sewed some laundry bags that had ripped. We also spent a while shoveling the driveway yesterday – the boys and dog had fun playing in the snow in the front yard while we shoveled, and several of the boys were good helpers with some of the shoveling. It took a while, but we got it done. And not long after we finished it snowed and covered the driveway in a few more inches, of course. Michael finished working on his presentation that he is giving tomorrow, and Kolby and I went out and finally found his coat yesterday too. And last night Michael and I read over the notes he took at some of his classes at the conference about finding jobs and starting up a practice or joining a practice. There’s still a lot we need to figure out, but Michael had been preparing his resume to send out and see if anyone’s thinking of hiring next year, so we can start to make some connections and hopefully something will come of that. We’ve heard of some people who start the job hunt now, and have something set up in advance, which would be really nice so we’ll see how that goes. But yesterday was a pretty good day, we seemed to get a lot done.

Then today the boys did pretty well at church. We didn’t even have to take anyone out in the hallway during the first hour before the children’s classes start, so that’s a pretty big accomplishment. Then I taught another genealogy class. I was asked to teach about census records, and I’m really glad that after I prepared my lesson the other day I printed out all my handouts right away, because that’s on the home computer that will not turn on. But, the lesson went well. I felt like I was able to answer the questions that people asked, and in the next class I’m going to let them try to find an ancestor on a census record and be there to help if needed, so hopefully everyone will be successful with that goal.

So, all is well at our house. Hopefully the computer issues will be resolved sometime this week – keep your fingers crossed for me – and nothing important will be lost. But things are pretty calm around here, at least at the moment. The three youngest boys are all napping upstairs, Michael fell asleep while reading on the couch next to me, Brax is laying at my feet, and Kolby and Eli are happy playing in the basement playroom. That’s one nice thing about having church at 9am now – even though it can sometimes be hard to get up at 6:30 in the morning to get everyone ready to go, it is nice to have a relaxing afternoon free when we come home from church.

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