The original plan was to send just the boys to PA for a week since Julia had already had her Grandy Camp experience. But Marmie called a few days before and suggested they just take all three. After thinking long and hard, Jon and I decided we could spare our 2 year old for a few more days this summer ... ha, just kidding. We immediately said yes, please and then got right to scheming all we'd do during our week of "just one kid."
First things first, Mama needed a sugar detox. I was going to wait until after the kids left, since I've heard the first few days are really miserable, but I didn't want the 10 day limit to run into our upcoming trip to PA and Knoebels (an incredibly detox unfriendly location). So I started earlier, suffered through days one through three, and then felt great by the time we waved goodbye to the kids.
|The morning of Grandy Camp, they certainly did their part to make say goodbye a bit easier!|
|She is totally enjoying the one-on-one time!|
|She's super-thrilled to finally visit Uncle Jared and Aunt Kylee's tiny-awesome city flat!|
|Pardon the lack of (quality) pictures. Just imagine streets of brick row houses with stone carvings and beautiful, flowering window boxes.|
|We happened to be where the happy couple got engaged last year, so of course a re-enaction was necessary!|
|I can eat, hold a feverish baby, and snap pictures over my shoulder all at the same time!|
Joci seemed better the next day so we went ahead with yet another favorite kid-less (or one-kid) activity--IKEA! We actually did have a purpose in going here, although simply not having kids along is reason enough to enjoy a long, leisurely stroll through Swedish decor-land. After a few bad nights in a row of trying to put three kids to sleep in one room, we decided it was time for a change. We had planned to have Joci and Julia sharing a room long before now, but Little Miss Up-At-Night has put a wrinkle in our plans. I'm starting to think that Joci will be going to Kindergarten before she starts sleeping through the night for good, so we decided to move ahead with Operation Girl Merge.
|Sorta-after, there's still some work to be done!|
The boys hadn't even packed their Grandy Camp bags before Jon had the guest room vacuumed, rearranged, and the Legos all boxed up. Of course, it couldn't be for good. We just love Legos too much in this house, and I certainly prefer my oldest to spend hours building and inventing than in front of the TV. So we decided to turn Julia's old corner into a Lego storage and building area. Nothing fancy, but it gets the job done.
|She loves to mix up all the Legos!|
In other, less exciting, ventures in parenting only one child, Joci had the pleasure of both her mom and dad attending her one year check-up. That's when the doctor noticed her red throat and slight fever. And although her weight is satisfactory, it's not great. I've never seen a baby dislike eating as much as this girl. So in addition to her heart, we're also praying for Joci's palate. I'm happy to nurse her for a while longer, but I'd prefer to no longer be her sole sustenance.
|She loved this smoothie! ... and by "love" I mean she took about 3 sips of it.|
And we ate spicy food, like this Pineapple Braised Pork Loin, which then became Moroccan Cauliflower "Rice" the second night since we actually had leftovers for once!
Don't be fooled though, we also enjoyed eating out a lot more since it was basically just the two of us.
And while I didn't get to start making a quilt this past week, like I had hoped, I did manage to sort through the kids fall clothes for consignment and their massive collection of toys. It was so nice to be able to throw things away without someone pulling it out of the trash a few minutes later. I also reorganized the book shelf and donated a pile of books and my kids are none the wiser. And so far, no one has mentioned the missing toys.
|This is my view every day, especially around 4:00 or when I'm trying to make dinner.|
And as a thank you for allowing me this one small luxury, I decided to frame a few pictures of our gal ... and her older siblings. I haven't done a very good job of updating our photo frames since I had my second kid, you know how those things go! So although all my office frames are still of a newborn Jack, at least the girls now have pictures of themselves in their room and Jude's face is in half the pictures in the boys' room. I would say I'm all caught up on photo stuff for a while but the sad truth is I still have yet to make myself a wedding album. Maybe we can save that for next Grandy Camp?
Speaking of next Grandy Camp, what are the chances I can have this girl potty-trained by the time she's 2? I won't have another baby to take care of, so I think the future looks promising. I mean, how amazing would it be to not have ANY kids for a few days next summer?? Then again, perhaps I'm assuming too much of Marmie and Poppa. They did a fantastic job keeping our offspring busy (more on their activities in the next post), and I know firsthand how much work four kids can be!
But for now, we're all back together again. We didn't get home until after midnight last night, so thankfully the kids all slept in this morning. But within minutes of rising, the boys were asking me approximately 307 questions an hour. The house is right back to being an absolute mess and I'm already tired of asking these kids to keep the noise down. But I wouldn't have it any other way. It was a nice break only have one kid last week, but I'm happy to have my little family whole again!