Where to Begin? Part 2

Today I realized that, not only was there a large gap in my blogging, there was a gap in my picture uploading on Flickr. I filled in the gap with the missing pictures, which included most of my last post – B’s third birthday. Part of the reason for this is that we had a sad event happen the following day. Shuttle, our orange kitty, Tiger Stripes offspring, was killed. He rode away in Paisley’s engine the evening of Ben’s birthday. That is what I suspected and it was confirmed the following morning when we went for a walk looking for him. Of course, we hoped to find him lost or, perhaps, with a minor injury. For some reason it didn’t occur to me that we would find him dead. In my mind I imagined either not finding him at all or else finding him alive and happily returning him home. Well, we found him in the middle of the road. By all appearances he was uninjured, but obviously died where he landed. It was awful. The mournful wailing of my kids (especially Zach) was nigh unbearable. “Shuuuuuttlllllllleeeeee. NOOOOOOoooooooo. Oooooohhhhhhh…. kitty.” Our neighbor M came by at that time and, thankfully, took the body away for us. I was quite emotional over it for a couple of days. As you may know, I’m not a cat lover, but this particular cat had found a special fondness in my heart. Just a couple of days earlier I was saying to the boys that I can’t believe how much I like that cat. I don’t know if it was the loss of the cat itself – I suspect that more-so it was the pitiful wailing of my children and the pain they felt – but for the first time in my adult life I shed tears over a cat.

Next up, G arrived safely home within hours of us having found Shuttle. He entered the house of mourning. Uncle A arrived late that night. We all headed to G’s parents’ the next day. I didn’t take many photos there. Next was an overnight stay to see my folks. I previously posted pics from there of the cousins. We had another nice surprise there when we got to see our good friends from Moose Point! Once home we spent one evening with just us. G’s family arrived the next day. When the last of that crew left on the 1st I got an email from a friend from the ‘peg saying that they were coming into town. They visited and her two boys ended up spending the night.

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At last, I had a day to run errands in the city. It’s something I’d rather have not “wasted” a day on, but needed to be done. The most exciting result of that is I finally purchased the ski conversion kit for our double Chariot. With groceries still sitting in the van we all decided to go for a ski and try it out. Z and G wanted to go a lot farther than we expected. We got back to the house at dark to make a late supper.

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Two sleeping boys inside.

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The rosy-cheeked crew.

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Enjoying his beets.

That brings us to yesterday and meeting up with friends at the park for some sledding. I was pumped to get on my skis again, so I did a lot of skiing with the Chariot in tow, and keeping Noah content. I feel all of my muscles today! It’s great.

Oh, I have to relate one more story from yesterday. Before going sliding I had to put a new motor on the furnace to control the air flap. I asked Gabe to come out with me. He helped by passing me tools, making sure the dog didn’t steal anything when I was in the garage, crimping the wires, etc. When we turned on the switch and the flap opened he beamed, “Wow, this is amazing! It’s the first time I’ve helped you fix a furnace!” When we got in the house he proudly announced to Daddy that he had helped fix the furnace. Hours later, nearing the end of our day on the hill, Gabe passed Merrie and asked, “Do you know why I’m so happy today? Because I helped Mommy fix the furnace.” I wasn’t there at the time, but Merrie later relayed the story to me. I am so happy to have found his niche – helping Mommy fix things. Next up – a dripping faucet. He is also asking me daily to teach him to sew. If I can only clear enough space to set up the sewing machine we’ll get started on that!

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Check out more sliding pictures on Flickr.

Well, that brings us to today and the end of G’s holidays and the goodbye and getting back into some sort of routine, though nothing about my life seems all that routine. I guess the one thing that is routine is chaos. And happy, smiling, curious faces that are ever eager to learn something new, to find a new adventure, to read a book, to laugh at a new (or old, well-worn) joke, and to cuddle a mother who wouldn’t trade it for anything.


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