It’s been awhile! We’ve been busy here with my parents coming to visit us for the last two weeks. They just left yesterday morning and we’re still grieving over here. I went outside today with the kids and remembered my dad walking in the driveway with Moriah, holding her hand while she walked on the ledge, or stopping her from riding her bike into the street. When I hung out the laundry in the backyard, I saw my mom doing that same thing a few days ago while the kids played in the water table nearby. Our lawn is freshly mowed because my dad went out during one of the few sunny days this past week and mowed it, Josiah at his side near the end to help.
We’re sad that they’re gone, and the kids are sad that their playmates aren’t here anymore. Even though my mom and dad aren’t spring chickens anymore, they still seem young and are constantly working around the house or playing with the kids. That’s not to say we didn’t wear them out though! When you’re sitting in a comfortable rocking chair with a sleeping baby, how can you NOT fall asleep!
It rained for much of their time here which hindered our plans to see some things, but it allowed for a bunch of playtime at home.
Dad and John put up insulation in our garage and caulked around the windows to help keep our house a little bit cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Dad found other odd jobs around our place to spruce it up, while Mom constantly did our dishes, laundry, and kept the place tidy. She did some crafts with the kids and both she and Dad would read and read and read to Mo. We even have a new dining room table and chairs because Mom felt sorry for us after using our old set. M and I had various doctor appointments (she turned 6 weeks last week so we had all those appointments to go to) and we had built-in babysitters.
We took the kids to an indoor play place one morning while M and I went to the chiro nearby.
We all went to the children’s museum in town and the kids had a BLAST for hours! Plus, we had 4 adults covering 4 kids–it was so great!
The first Sunday they were here, John preached and M was baptized. It was so special having Mom and Dad here for the baptism. They were going to come out for Mo’s in 2015 but Dad got sick on the way so they didn’t make it. This time, however, they traveled half way around the world and watched Mom’s namesake be baptized. It was a special day. Although M cried through much of the ceremony (and before and after), the older two kids did fantastic, and we wrangled Mo enough to get her to stay in our arms for the baptism. M was wearing my baptism gown that Mom had preserved all these years, which made it all the more special. Someone at church took pictures of the event, but we don’t have those yet. We do, however, have individual pictures we took of the kids before church–they turned out well!
We also took some family shots and got some cute candid ones too.
John, E, M, and I all went up to Sydney the first Monday Mom and Dad were here to get some American paperwork completed. E needed a new passport (kids passports need to be renewed every 5 years, and hers is expiring this year) and M needed U.S. citizen birth abroad, Social Security, and passport paperwork completed. We spent basically all day up there from the train ride up and back and the 2 hour appointment/lunch while Mom and Dad watched J and Mo here at home.
We went up the escarpment (the ridge nearby our town) and visited Bowral, a small tourist town. On the way back we gave Mom and Dad an authentic meat pie experience when we stopped at Robertson’s Pie Shop. We brought them to Symbio so they could see koalas, kangaroos, and other Australian animals up close. On the way down we drove along the coast so they could see the Wollongong area in all its beauty. It was a clear, sun-filled day–perfect for a drive along the coast!
The last Tuesday they were here, John and I (and M because she refuses to take a bottle) brought Mom and Dad up to Sydney, the only time they got to see the iconic city. We were sad we didn’t go up there once more but we were able to drive over the Harbour Bridge (Dad requested it and we weren’t going to do it, but we got lost and ended up driving over it during rush hour) and see the Opera House in daylight. We took a water taxi over to Carmen, which took place in the Botanic Gardens nearby. It was a GORGEOUS night for it and you could see the Opera House and Harbour Bridge behind the opera. They even had fireworks go off during the performance. Although we ended up getting home past midnight, it was worth it! If we had our choice, we would have spent more time in Sydney showing them a few more sights, but with the weather being what it was, we just didn’t have the chance.
Wednesday was their last day here so Mom and I went out for coffee and lunch at a local coffee house while the men watched the 4 kids. Dad got a chance to read more books and Mom got a chance to hold M a lot, as I wanted to give her as many opportunities to hold her as possible (and I had to take advantage of the extra set of hands).
M is a pretty fussy baby. I’m finding out more and more foods I can’t have, and if I’m strict on my diet, she does well. However, there are still many moments when she just has to cry because I don’t have enough hands to hold her and get stuff done. With Mom and Dad here, however, she never had to cry without being held. Don’t get me wrong–she cried! A lot. But she didn’t cry on her own–she always had someone comforting her.
So, that’s where we’re at. It was a hard day yesterday and today but we’re trying to get back into a routine again. Thankfully the weather has been great yesterday, today, and tomorrow, so it’s making the transition easier because they can go outside and ride bikes, etc. The rain starts up again on Sunday, so we will once again be homebound.
We love houseguests and if anyone wants to visit us, we have a whole room for you to stay in and very eager children to entertain you, as well as a minivan with extra seats to drive you around in. 🙂