This past week has been full. The older kids have been filming their movie almost every day. The younger kids are spending a lot of the day outside. Sean has had football camp, except that on the last day he got some stomach bug and stayed home. Kevin bought a soft-sided pool when he went to town to get Sean’s cleats. He planned to set it up on the deck but underestimated its size; when he got it home he found that its capacity was 1800 gallons and its diameter is 12 feet. Physically it would fit on the deck but as far as weight-bearing goes, it’s too much of a risk. So he and the boys have been levelling out some ground behind our house.
I have been organizing books. Right now the house is completely trashed. I’m moving one of the bookshelves upstairs from the downstairs hall.
I have a system now where the little kids watch a video or play a video game while I take a nap every afternoon. That gives them their electronic time but not in excess. Under these conditions, the exhaustion is manageable and I can actually do things the rest of the day. Also, limiting simple carbs is helping a bit.
Clare is at mass down in the foothills singing in the choir. It’s supposed to be 110 degrees down there today and in the near future. It’s actually up to 90 here which is rare.
We had to take the cat to the vet this Wednesday. When we came back from the trip Brendan told us that a small raw patch on its ear had grown and extended to its neck. When the vet saw it, she said, “Wow, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that.” Oops, not a good sound! The whole-scale treatment with biopsy under anesthesia would be about 600 dollars; but the minimal treatment was a bit over 100$, still way more than we’d like to spend. The vet is speculating that it’s some kind of auto-immune disease. GREAT. The cat has been a trooper, as cats go, about twice a day betadine scrubs, 3 daily doses of oral medicine, and application of triple-screen cream. I have to alternate kids to help me by holding the animal so I can concentrate on getting the medicine into the mouth. If you do it wrong, a cat will foam, which is startling. It happened at the vet’s which was good, otherwise I would have panicked when it happened here once.
Aidan takes quite an interest. At the vet’s office he couldn’t stop laughing. I think it was because it was such a relief and novelty seeing a cat get doctored rather than himself. At home he consoles the cat cheerfully, “There, you’re done! that wasn’t so bad. Good job!” kind of thing.
Liam took a walk with Aidan so I could work on my story. So I did. Oh and also, Kieron (age 10) has started a new story and worked till midnight on it yesterday. He kept coming into the closet where I was sorting books to tell me plot points or ask for advice. He is so thrilled about it. His writing has definitely improved and he is really thinking like a writer –making decisions about the pacing, about how to vary the emotional tone, things like that. It is neat to hear him talk about these things. He is more transparent and judicial than the other kids were at that age. They kept their writing decisions private, as did I when I was young. He has an interesting mind — he can stand back from its workings. I think that’s probably why he always had such an easy time with the more formal academics. He naturally thinks in different layers of abstraction. Hard to describe.
Clare got some swing videos from the library.
Having books all over the furniture has led naturally to some pick-up reading. Paddy and Aidan and Kieron, especially. So that’s good.
I just read Surviving the Applewhites.
I am starting to plan for next year. I’d like to have some loose goals and a few strategies in place.
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