All of Us

All of Us

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I'm Baaaack!

Not that I went anywhere, technically, unless going insane counts!

To recap and summarize some of the events that have left me too busy to blog:

*Driving kids to swim team and back each morning.

*Driving D. to basketball camp and back each afternoon for a week.

*Driving L. to soccer camp and back each day for a week.

*Driving I. to gymnastics and back once a week.

*Driving J. and L. to various 4-H events and back.

*Weekend long annual family reunion of D's extended family, held at his brother's house. Great fun, but exhausting.

*D's niece visits for 3 days after family reunion.

*Extremely HOT weather. D. wants to know how I survived in Arizona if the heat bothers me so much. I pointed out to him that I had AIR CONDITIONING--really GOOD a/c, in fact. We had a/c installed earlier this month.

*Daughter J. has been experiencing insomnia, difficulty breathing and chest pain. This results in numerous visits to doctors and specialists, who conclude that she is absolutely fine. This is a fairly common behavior/complaint in prepubescent girls. The pain may be real, but has no physical cause that they can determine. She is very dramatic and has kept us up late nightly, waking us to tell us that she cannot sleep.

*Good friend visits over 4th of July weekend. Loads of fun, but again, tiring.

*Baby that still wakes 2-4 times per night to nurse, occasionally won't go back to sleep for an hour or so.

*D. was out of town about 50% of June.

*Laptop died (making it harder to blog since I'm chained to the desk).

*BATS, BATS, and more BATS
In the past month, we have had 1 in the house, 1 in the basement, 1 baby drowned in our pool, another baby on the pool deck, and 1 sandwiched between the circuit board and the metal housing of our NEW a/c fan motor. The first 2 were just irritating, chasing them around at night. The drowned one was no problem.

The one on the pool deck, however, was touched by a visiting child who didn't see it (it was on the black handle of a toy) and it bit her. Bit is actually an overstatement--it didn't break the skin and left a mark only visible if you really looked hard for it. I thought nothing of it, told her not to touch it again. When she told her mother about the incident later, her mother, who incidentally is a friend of mine, and has had some experience with this, called the doctor. He insisted that she bring the child in immediately to begin rabies shots and have the bat tested if possible. Thankfully, the bat, which was too young to fly, was still on the pool deck. It tested negative so poor K. only had to have one shot. It turns out that rabies is transmittable from ANY contact with a bat, and the protocol for giving shots varies by county in the state of Michigan. Stringent recommendations which seem like overkill, like the ones in my county, are due to a high prevalence of rabies in the bat population. My friend was actually told by hospital personnel that if you wake up and a bat has been flying around in your house (happens monthly at my house) everyone in the house should begin the shots while you have the bat tested, if you can catch it. Sounded strange to me, since these aren't vampire bats, but rather insect eating bats that wouldn't be interested in biting or bothering humans, but apparently rabid bats can act strangely and rabies is absolutely fatal without treatment within a certain amount of time.

The last bat cost us hundreds of dollars in air conditioning repairs.

We then spent more money hiring a pest control expert to come out, determine where the bats are entering our house and seal it up, leaving one exit that is set up as a one way door so they can't re-enter. Also known as the world's most expensive caulk job.

*RETREAT!! A work retreat for D. that families are invited to attend, at a beautiful resort in northern Michigan. Meals are provided, so it meant no planning, shopping for, cooking or cleaning up after meals for me! Also no housework, since maids clean the rooms. It included a small "water park" consisting of a beautiful pool with a zero depth entry, slides and fountains and basketball hoops; a 32 foot climbing wall; very nice golf course; lovely landscaping everywhere. We got "wowed" many times by D's colleagues from around the country for the size of our family, but in general people were very nice. We also received many compliments on our kids, who really behaved absolutely perfectly all of the many times they were out in public during the 4 days we spent there (we went a day early). After we checked out on Saturday, we went to a Lake Michigan beach and spent the day, driving home very late. It was a much needed renewal for me. I had become very frazzled. Although the summer is theoretically less busy for me, it sure didn't feel that way. I got way behind on things that needed attention, like cleaning the fridge and paying the bills, yet still had no time for myself and spent very little quality time with my kids doing things like reading books and playing games. It was taking all my effort just to tread water--no forward progress. Hopefully things will be better the rest of the summer.

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SE Michigan, United States
Mother to 10 fabulous kids, ages 4 to 21 years! Married for 26 years to my best friend.


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