Aug 4, 2009

Fellowshippin' in Atlanta

As I mentioned, we spent last weekend in Marietta visiting friends. Leslie and I have been friends since 1981 ... we met in third grade and went through Brownies together, attended the same church, spent every Spring Break together, were in each other's weddings. It's one of those friendships that's a true treasure and continues to stand the test of time.

We planned this trip to coincide with our dear mutual friend Monica's visit home from Italy with her son, Scott. They moved to Italy several months ago for an extended stay when her husband accepted a fellowship there. Monica and I met in 1987 (how is it POSSIBLE that that was 22 years ago?) and endured high school together.

Mon is one of those people who ALWAYS has a smile on her face, sees the best in every situation, and is a light in the world. Even all these years later, she remains the most positive person I've ever known ... and her baby Scott is the focus of a lot of that happiness.

As a gift to the kids, Monica brought this neat sprinkler ball, and the kids absolutely couldn't WAIT to open it and hook it up. Then it was merely a question of who got to hold it and spray streams of water directly into the other kids' eyes on purpose. Here, Nick and Isaac are battling for the honor.

Nick won that round. And in the background you can see an increasingly familiar sight ... Nathaniel toting Jake around like he's an overgrown Cabbage Patch Kid. I'm not sure why Jake has his legs pulled up at a 90-degree angle, but when you carry him under his arms like that, his legs lever up to that position as if they're suspended by strings.

The kids played with the sprinkler ball for a long time, not caring how muddy the yard got or how much grass got stuck to their faces.

When they tired of the sprinkler ball, we whipped out the baby pool -- mostly for the younger kids, who didn't see much action with the sprinkler ball. And it started out with the babies.

But soon, very soon, ALL of the kids wanted to run and jump in the baby pool. (That's Nathaniel in the rear, with skin seven shades darker than everyone else.)

"I'm losing my patience. This is supposed to be THE BABY POOL, PEOPLE."

Inevitably, when you have a water hose and seven kids under 7 running around a yard, you're going to have some missteps.

Jake face-planted within five minutes.


"I look like someone ... but I can't put my finger on it. OH YEAH. Holy Two-Face, Batman!"

"I can't decide whether to laugh or cry. Why is everyone laughing at me? This is embarrassing."

"I'm just gonna suck it up and be a big man about it. Hose me down, Mommy."

And three seconds later, after no meltdown, he was stained orange but headed right back into the melee.

"Gimme five, guys!"

Approximately .4 seconds later, Eliza Claire found the mud.

And why we would expect any less than THIS outcome, I don't know. Oh, the pride in a job well done. We can all identify.

At some point the littler kids tired of the water games and took a break to emulate 80-year-old men.

"Clete, them kids sure are makin' a mess of that there yard."

"Yeah, sure are, Bub. Kids'll be kids, alright."

"Naw, I mean they are REALLY makin' a mess now."

"I know it. But I'm feelin' a nap comin' on, so I don't have time to worry 'bout it."

"Hey, Bub. Take a look at this ... I'm gonna have to go git this spot on ma face seen about at the doctor's soon."

Old men, I tell you.

At some point while the kids were actually CLEAN, Jakey showed off his new walking skills for everyone.

"I'm comin' for you, Mommy."

"Straight for you."

"I'm gonna make it look a little like the Macarena while I do it. A little shimmy here, a little wiggle there."

So proud that he can move under his own steam, that one. Just a joy to be around.

And of course I couldn't let the weekend pass without a little torture for all of us. Since I didn't manage to take pictures of our kids while we were at the beach, I wanted to try to get some of them here.

It started out innocently enough.

Me: "OK, guys, sit there and try to show me your dimples. Nick, that's not your dimples. That's like a weird 'I smell poop' face."

Nick: "I AM smiling. I am saying CHEESE."

Me: "Aw, Jakey. Don't fuss, buddy. Smile for the pictures."

Nathaniel: "I'll help, Mommy."

Me: "No, buddy. Don't 'help.' He'll be OK. Don't touch him."


Me: "Arrrggh."

And then there was a total meltdown and Jake exited the set. Diva.


Sarah T. said...

They are way adorable.

Anonymous said...

LOVE IT!!! The mud, the "old men dialogue," the Macarena are just too funny!

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