I made a deal with my sister-in-law that by the next time we talked on the phone I would have sent an email to a few friends asking for help. She had a great plan, round up three or four friends and ask if they would be willing to help us one night per month. Line a family up for once a week, have them bring their kids to play with the boys, order pizza, supply drinks, set up computers and get this inventorying done already.
I got off the phone with her and I was pumped, this would be the answer. If we could devote one night per week to this maybe we'd finally make our way through this mess!
I haven't talked to Cas since.
Mostly because we've been so busy, but I'm also scared to call her. I'm in tears just writing about this, but here's the thing...I don't know how to ask for help. What if they tell me no? I'll feel horrible asking. What if they tell me yes, but they don't really want to? I'll feel horrible asking.
But while I haven't gotten the balls to actually ask for help, I have been learning to accept it. Before I went back to work my friend, Alyssa, came up for an afternoon to watch the boys. She took them downstairs to play and on a walk and it gave me time to clean up the kitchen, prepare my work area, and return a few phone calls. And this past Wednesday evening some other friends, Kevin and Kelsi, stopped by and did the same, allowing us to run over to the stone place to pick out our counter top. This was the last major decision we needed to make for the house and it had been delayed because we just couldn't find the time to get over there sans children.
And the whole reason I'm telling you all of this is because this past weekend our friends, Jill and Andy, loaded their car and their three kids (ages 5, 3 and 11 mo. - and I'm telling you this because OMG they had 6 kids 5 and under!!!) and drove five hours north to watch the boys for us for the weekend so we could work. And now I'm in tears again because as easy as it is to be negative about this whole year and the turmoil in our lives right now, we are reminded over and over again how wonderful our friends and family truly are.
Jill and Andy came bearing an arsenal of activities and food and I could quickly see that the boys would be just fine without us for the day.
Saturday morning and afternoon they had a teddy bear theme planned. There were teddy bear car races:
Teddy bear coloring:
Teddy bear bowling:
And teddy bear mask-making, among other things:
I spent the morning in the spare bedroom sorting and organizing. Around noon I came upstairs and found the kids huddled around this on the kitchen table.
A teddy bear sandwich!!! Look at his limbs, those are little turkey sandwiches. Is that not the cutest??
For dessert they had mud and worms:
Around nap time I took a quick shower and headed out to Kohls, WalMart, and Younkers to do a little shopping. I got almost all of the things needed for the boys' bathroom at the house - shower curtain, rug, towels, toothbrush & soap holders, a garbage can, etc. I picked up seven more totes - we now have one for each room and they are all labeled and packed with items we have so far, ready to be (hopefully easily) moved.
I got home in time for dinner, a camp out theme, with included hot dogs and pasta salad. After dinner they set up the tent in the living room for the kids to watch a Mickey's Camping Adventure movie. Each of the kids equipped with popcorn and their very own flashlight.
Of course, no camp out is complete without s'mores. I may have come up periodically throughout the evening to munch on a little of this. Okay. A lot of this.
On Sunday morning the work resumed, Collin out at the house finishing up the tiling in the bathroom and me back down to the bedroom. Meanwhile the kids had fun with play doh:
Made fruit loop necklaces:
Oh, and let's not forget about this guy. Too young to participate maybe, but here and active just the same.
Jill and Andy, I can not tell you how much we appreciate your help. This past weekend was exactly what we needed to get our feet back under us. To feel like we are moving forward instead of constantly stuck in a pile of quicksand, struggling, struggling, struggling, trying to get ahead. And a perfect reminder that life, even during our struggles, is good.