This past week has been... well... lets just say writers couldn't have written this stuff. As I think about it all conglomerated, it becomes almost comical to think about life in the Brewer household this week...
Monday started out with a barrage of warnings from the radio that this would be a week for the record book as far as weather was concerned. For Minnesota, that's saying a LOT.
Unfortunately, they were right.
It started snowing while I was at the gym for the 9:15 class, and only got thicker as the day wore on. All afternoon events got cancelled. I shoveled 3 times, only to have it be completely snowy again within 20 minutes.
The good thing that happened that day was, we finally got a new (for us) dishwasher installed!!! We have been going on 10 months of no dishwasher, which my friends when you add 6 people x 3 meals x snacks x a very messy toddler = a LOT of dishwashing!! I found a dishwasher on freecycle about 3 months ago, that sat in our kitchen until a dear friend had pity on us and wrangled her husband into coming over to install it (Thank you so much Patty!!). On the grand moment of installation, however, we discovered that the dishwasher did not work.
After dinner, I fiddled around with it, and low and behold, the Heavens took pity on us and it started working!! There was never a sweeter sound that night, then hearing the dishwasher going while I could finally sit in with the family for story-book time.
So that's a good thing, right??...
Well, fast forward a few days, and I am slowly realizing that the water is not draining in each load, which means the dishes are getting washed with the same mucky, germy, dirty water each cycle. I have sadly learned that sometimes there is a reason why people give their things away on 'freecycle'...
Enough with the dishwasher...
Tuesday Jerry got stuck late at the hospital... which means I was late for YW... which wouldn't have been a bad thing... had I not been in charge of teaching the activity... (thanks, Marissa for taking up the supplies!!)... and got there to realize that another ward had commandeered the kitchen area (have you ever tried teaching cake decorating in a room with no water source to wipe up the sticky, greasy mess that is abundant in frosting?!). Trying to 'creatively' clean up cake decorating from a different room made me late getting home... which made Jerry late for a presidency meeting he had...
Thursday is when the Events truly became unfortunate, however.
We woke up to 'record' freezing temperatures (can you say - 21 WITHOUT wind chill??!). Jerry's car happened to be parked behind the van... neither one of which were in the garage (can you see where this is going?) His car didn't start, so he came in to have us give him a ride... only to find that that van wouldn't start (and tripped the alarm every time we tried -- yep our neighbors loved that one!). He had to get to work, so he set off to get the bus, and I stayed home to try to figure out the cars.
I would have been happy as a clam to hunker down at home and weather the weather... had it not been for 2 classes I was slated to teach at the Y (which didn't get cancelled - yes, people really did show up in this weather to exercise!! Minnesotans are crazy people!), and a meeting (that I had been working for over 2 weeks to arrange with the president of a bank and the head of the sba committee in town to figure out how to get a loan for our invention) in the afternoon.
Looking back, I really should have videod my efforts to get a working car. Picture: my trying to start the van (and tripping the alarm). Getting out, trying to push is into the garage so it can warm up enough to start - didn't budge an inch. Trying to Push Jerry's car out of the driveway (so that if I did get the van to start, I could actually go somewhere) - moved 1 inch, but no more. Getting back into the van and repeating the whole cycle about 4 times. Nothing.
Marissa again comes to the rescue with her minivan (7 kids in one minivan - just shy of being legal...) to get to the gym, and then to get a 'super-turbo-self-charger' for the van on the way home... which upon reading the instructions, I learned that it has to charge for 20 hours before it will do any good.
Great. Loan meeting is now in 2 hours.
I tried anyway - no go. Another sweet angel friend (yes, Kathleen, that's you) innocently calls to set up a playdate with the kids, only to be barraged by my sob story and generously offers to have the kids go there to play, and have me take her car (you truly are an angel!!).
Friday morning temperatures were even LOWER (-23 - can you say nostril-stick-together-lungs-burn when breathing attempts made??!) Jerry's car, still nothing. Van... nothing... hook up the super-turbo-charger... and finally - the sweet sound of a roaring engine (hey, there has to be at least ONE good thing that happens in the middle of all of this muck, right??!)
(... of course, this is the day that I DON'T have anything scheduled, and could have just hunkered down in the house!!)
Fast forward to last night (we really are on the homestretch of this insane blog, I promise!!). Right after dinner, I knew there was a problem. Something in my stomach was not agreeing with something in my body. I put the kids down (but not before Joshy had a poopy diaper, that got 'helped off' by the hands of an unnamed older brother, and climbed up onto the couch...) and tried to go to bed and sleep it off, only to start a barrage of bathroom trips as my body tried to expel the evil that I had ingested.
On one such trip, I was met with Seth, also doing the same thing (but who didn't quite make it to the bathroom and had a bed covered in... well... use your imagination...), and with Ben who was just standing in the hallway, doing the best impression of a seal I have ever heard, and not able to catch his breath to even cry - all he could do was stare at me with the huge horror stricken eyes. As I was sitting in the bathroom, (not able to move at the moment... sorry for TMI...), I tried to get him to come to me, but he just stood there frozen, and I knew that at any minute he would fall over unconscious.
I get Jerry up, who takes Ben outside to try to clear his lungs a little (did I mention that we are still in the middle of ARCTIC temperatures??!), get bowls for Seth and me, and we perform some sort of circus act, alternating leaning over the bowls or running to the bathroom, while Jerry holds Ben in a chair for the rest of the night so he can monitor his breathing.
Have we finally made it to Saturday??! Wahoo! The day Jerry doesn't have to rush off to work... except that he is moonlighting... so he has to leave even EARLIER than usual... and will be gone the great majority of the day... which leaves 4 very cabin-fevered children in a house with a doubled over sick mother... who is in charge of dj-ing a stake dance tonight and has to teach line dances to the youth of said stake...
I send all of the kiddos downstairs to do... well... pretty much whatever can keep them occupied, and try to curl up onto a ball and get just a little cat nap... until I am awakened by a 'sloshy sound' and race to the bathroom... to find Joshy in all of his devilish glory... happily schlopping about... in the toilet... that had recently received all of the beforementioned bodily fluids...
... anyone out there have a spare bottle of calgon?? Anyone?? Anyone....??