Snow! Hallelujah! The Winter That Almost Wasn't has finally redeemed itself. The past 5 days have been a veritable orgy of snowboots, skipants, sledding, and hot cocoa. And Theo managed to make a cool 100 dollars (no pun intended) by digging desperate neighbors' cars out of solid ice. Even grown-up Anna deigned to sled with us for a bit - nothing like a sheet of ice to make those cheap plastic sleds fly through the air like magic carpets. Not realizing quite how slick it was at first, I let Rachel go down our sledding hill solo. She veered drastically off course and disappeared over the bank of a (thankfully) shallow creek as we all gawked in horror from the top of the hill. When we finally got to her, she was sitting on the bottom, furious at the traitorous sled and at the huge rocks which she had apparently bounced off of (headfirst) as she landed. And, yes, of course she wanted to go again. That's one tough little chick, you know. If the same thing had happened to me, I would have needed an ambulance.
Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Matt came to visit this weekend. We coaxed Uncle Matt onto a sled, and he almost got the hang of it after several runs down the slope. Grandpa decided his weekend wasn't interesting enough, so he chose to check out the local hospital facilities. Important health tip - don't set out on a car trip while experiencing pain in the kidney area. Kidney stones don't make for a pleasant weekend with the grandkids. On the other hand, I had a great excuse to desert Larry and the kiddies for most of Sunday and get a lot of knitting done - someone had to sit with Grandpa in the hospital while the doctors decided what to do with him.
Once again I am the meanest mommy in the world. I told Anna that she had to practice her flute 20 minutes each day in order to make it worth our while to continue to shell out the big bucks for private lessons. She haughtily told me that I did not understand music at all. Be that as it may, I do understand money, unlike a certain 13-year-old that I know. This disagreement has not improved our relationship, of course. Anna keeps informing me that she hates me. She forgot to ask if I care.
Susie doesn't hate me. In fact, she loves me so much she wakes up several times a night just to make sure I'm there. And Rachel keeps saying, "I love you, Mommy"; but that just makes me nervous. She always used to say that after committing a particularly nasty prank. David definitely loves me; I shared my Valentine's candy with him. I should give some to Brian also. I'm just trying to make sure that some of these kids stay on my side.
No toilet stories, folks - sorry (not)! We hardly dare believe that Rachel has put her, um, prankster stage behind her; but miracles do happen. All I can say is, her reformation has had absolutely nothing to do with us. We meted out any and all punishment we could think of (that was legal), and it never had one bit of a corrective effect on our demon child's behavior. I don't know when we'll ever trust her again. And she does keep talking about driving. It makes us a tad nervous, you know?
David is assiduously training Brian in all the household chores. Apparently, he doesn't want to be stuck with extra work when Theo flies the coop for the summer. Brian, for reasons unknown to me, actually cooperates with the instruction. David will probably start teaching Rachel next, which might actually be a good way to channel her extra energy and, um, creativity.
Preschool is going well, but this Tuesday is "Family Day." It seems that either Larry or I are expected to go with Rachel that day in order to enjoy the preschool experience with her. The people in charge don't seem to understand that I am already thoroughly enjoying the preschool experience - the only reason we are paying them over 200 dollars a month is so that we can get a much-needed break from this kid for 9 hours a week.
I don't think I'll tell them that, though. The teachers already look at me funny when I frisk Rachel for hidden scissors at the end of the school day.
It's getting too cold in the house to sit up any longer. I've figured out that we may be finished paying for college by my 65th birthday, at which point Larry might just buy me real windows - you know, ones that you can stand next to without a coat on and that don't try to guillotine your wrists as you mess with the storms and the screens. Definitely something to look forward to....