Leaving Chennai, part 3 – Final Roundup

Today is our last day in Chennai, which means this is my last blog post from here. The packing is pretty much finished, there is mess all over the house, and all the furniture is getting picked up at varying times throughout the day by 4 different people. Pretty much all of it sold, except for the old water filter and microwave, though we may be able to get the scrap dealer, who has taken a number of our things, to buy them.

Sidney the cat is noticing the changes around here. She was outside on the balcony early and saw that I had the light on, so she cried her most pitiful cry. Then seeing as I wasn’t opening the door, she jumped to the window where I couldn’t ignore her. Now she is roaming the house meowing, looking for everyone else who is still asleep (it’s not quite 7 a.m.). I think she will miss us as much as we will miss her.

Now for some “I remembers”:

Samsung

I remember the day Logan got his first crib. It meant a more comfortable night sleep for me. (14 months old)

Samsung

I remember the shock of finding this rocking horse in a parcel shortly after praying to get one for Logan. (19 months old)

Samsung

I remember how sweet Logan was with Lila, and how much he wanted to hold and play with her. (Logan 20 months, Lila 3 months)

Samsung

I remember I was lying down and Lila was nursing, while Logan was making his puzzle next to me. He put the knob of each piece in his mouth and then stuck it in the puzzle.

Samsung

I remember seeing Lila in this rare thumb-sucking moment, and thinking how cute she looked. It’s one of my most favorite pictures of her. (3 months old)

Samsung

I remember how excited he was to get to pet this baby goat. He had been chasing the goats and they were all running from him. Then this man stopped and picked one up for him. (2 yrs. 3 mo.)

Nov 78

I remember this moment of bonding between Lila (19 months) and Scarlett (10 days).

March 127

I remember that Scarlett really loved our homemade popsicles. (16 months)

Apr 044

I remember how excited they were when I told them they could play tea party on the balcony. They brought everything out. (Lila, 3 yrs., Scarlett, 17 mo.)

Photo-0229

I remember this day when daddy and Logan reversed rolls and had lots of fun on the roof.

Sept 015

I remember how much work it was to get those not-quite-perfect lines in Lila’s hair.

SAMSUNG

I remember they were so excited that it was Christmas Day and they could have chocolate and cookies for breakfast. (Lila, 3 1/2; Logan, 5 yrs.)

There are so many more special memories but I’m going to have to stop here. Tomorrow morning early we will be driving off towards Bangalore, where we will spend the night and head out the next day for Mangalore.

And now I’d better get going as I have a 9:30 dental appointment.

Leaving Chennai, part 2 – Special Events

If you missed the first part, you can read it here.

 

There have been many special days and events that have happened in the past 5 years since we moved here, but I’d have to say that the biggest and best of the special events were that Lila and Scarlett were both born here, in the same hospital, delivered by the same doctor.

Samsung

Newborn Lila.

Samsung

With daddy.

Nov 43

Newborn Scarlett

Nana Mable visited several times.

Nov 36

With newborn Scarlett. November 2010

Nov 61

Her birthday. That is Lila she is holding. November 2010

June 038

At the zoo. June 2012

Nov 088

At the beach. Lila was miserable and hated it. November 2012

 

Logan and Lila started school.

June 31

Logan on his first day of preschool. June 2011

June 056

Lila on her first day of preschool. June 2012

Photo-0090

Logan’s first day of kindergarten. July 2012

 

We had some family vacations.

Mahabalipuram, just outside Chennai, February 2010.

Samsung

Dinner at a sidewalk restaurant.

Samsung

Going down to the beach.

Samsung

Swimming in the pool.

Samsung

Relaxing.

 

Mango Hill resort and a visit to the Crocodile Bank Reserve park. July 2013

556749_163278770529557_1659262804_n

Checking out the crocodiles.

1016396_163278833862884_294039729_n

1003161_157561837767917_1733408519_n

Learning to swim.

1185732_10200271264659102_947802850_n

Such a water baby.

1000947_10200271282459547_387102254_n

Fun times.

969930_157564894434278_1850349639_n

My handsome men.

1170649_10200271420222991_1559382821_n

At dinner.

 

So many memories, so little time to go over them all. I’m going to do one more post in this series, but right now I need to go get myself and the kids dressed for a little goodbye party that is happening at Glad’s office.

Packing

Packing – there is so much to do and so little time to do it in. I’ve got just one week to go through everything that we own and cut it down to the bare minimum of what we will need while in Mangalore. But I’m excited! We’ve been waiting for this time to come for over a year now, and it’s finally here!

Yesterday I pulled out all of our suitcases and bags. I found the padlock for our back door that went missing about 2 years ago, conveniently hanging from the zipper of Glad’s small suitcase that hadn’t been used in forever. The suitcase was sitting inside a larger one that was stored under my bed, and of course, I never went into it because there was no need. I wonder what I’ll find today?

Last week I was getting rid of junk, throwing stuff out or giving it away. This week, I’ve got to look at every item still in the house and decide whether it will go in the bags we are taking or the ones we are giving away. Honestly, all we are keeping are clothes (about half of what we all own), a few toys and books, some personal items, and a few decorative things for Canada, plus a few things from the kitchen that my MIL wants or that I want to keep using while at her house, like my favorite glass baking pan.

Of course this will be reduced even more once we fly to Canada, but for now, if it fits in the car it can come.

Which brings me to the upcoming drive.

Remember last December when we drove to Mangalore? The trip that took two days? Yep, we are doing it again. Thankfully this time it is only one way. Two days in a car with kids is enough to drive anyone mad. My kids can’t do a whole lot in the car since two of them get carsick easily. Last time Logan asked literally every 5 minutes if we were there yet, and “but we’re supposed to be there already” is all I heard all day, unless he was napping.

So if you don’t hear too much from me this week or the next, you know what I’ll be doing.

Leaving Chennai, part 1 – Parks

At the end of this week, we leave Chennai for Mangalore. We are leaving more than just a city – it’s been our home for the past 5 1/2 years. When you leave a place where you have been for so long, memories abound. Like I did for the house we are leaving, I’m going to do some photo posts of places we have visited and things we have done that will forever be embedded in our hearts.

Parks is the topic for this first post. I’ve got thousands of photos of park outings, but I’m choosing the best ones to show you. These are from about 6 different parks that we have gone to regularly over the last 5 years.

Samsung

Logan at 19 months.

Samsung

2 years old.

Samsung

So handsome.

Samsung

Lila at 11 months old. She had just started walking and loved the park.

July 14

This was to become our favorite park, being only a 5 minute drive away. Because of that huge tower, it is aptly known as “Tower Park”.
Logan, 2 1/2, Lila 15 months. You can almost see Scarlett popping out of my tummy.

Aug 07

Learning to slide on her own.

Jan 32

This is one of my favorites. Lila, 21 months; Logan, 3 years.

Mar 19

I recall that this day was sweltering.

Apr 71

One of their favorite things to climb – the snail. Lila, 2 years.

May 24

The main fountain at Tower Park.

May 26

Scarlett, 6 months old.

June 25

A good view of the tower. It has a ramp to walk up that circles the tower all the way to the top. but it has been closed to the public for years. I’ve always wanted to see the view from up there.

Jan 099

It’s a rare occasion when daddy can join us. Scarlett was 14 months old.

Jan 102

Who knows what lands this snail has taken them too?

Feb 073

Valentine’s Day, 2011.

Feb 116

First time alone on the swing. 15 months old.

Feb 134

Such fun, carefree times.

March 209

The day Logan graduated from preschool. Lila, almost 3; Scarlett, 16 months; Logan, 4 1/2 years.

May 001

Trying out the skates she got for her third birthday.

May 013

Fun times with daddy.

May 095

Sweet.

May 117

My climber. Nothing can ever stop her from reaching the top.

July 016

First time up in a tree.

Photo-0058

Scarlett, 1 1/2.

Sept 047

These next few photos were taken at the beautiful botanical gardens.

Sept 056

Sept 086

535032_4523732426211_1528899043_n

Time for some tricks. Lila, 4 years; Logan, 5 1/2 years.

1380805_10200539393322151_608918228_n

Spiral slides are such fun.

1941413_10201294039467833_1845659179_o

Their favorite way to use the snail now. Logan and Scarlett are sitting on the antennae.

And that brings me to the end of the park photo collection. We will have one last goodbye trip before leaving. Of all the parks in the city, we have used this one the most, and I shall miss it.

Memories From This House

In only a few short weeks, we will be leaving this house that holds so many memories. I thought it might be fun to do a photo post and take a stroll down memory lane.

We have been in this house 3 years and 8 months (as of the end of March 2014). There are so many special things to remember that it is hard to limit this post to the truly memorable ones from each year but I’ll try. To keep this as short as possible, I’ve not included Christmases or any special holidays, though those do hold some special memories for us.

Warning – lots of photos ahead. I’ve given links to some old posts but you don’t have to read them unless you really want to.

2010

We found this house in June 2010 after a month of intense searching. We had seen many other places, including one just down the street from this one that we almost took, but this house was the one. The photo below was taken just before going to see it for the first time.

Samsung

Logan, 2 yrs. 7 mos.; Lila 14 months.

We moved into the house in July. This is what the balcony looked like before we put the wire mesh up for the kids’ safety.

Samsung

I took photos of the house when we first moved in, but the flash had died on my camera so they came out dark. If you want to see them, click here.

Shortly after that we bought a new camera, so the rest of the pics from that time are clear. The balcony became a favored play area, enabling Logan and Lila to be outside without having to leave the house. I was pregnant with Scarlett at the time, and did not always have the energy to take them to the park. This balcony is the main reason we took this house.

Aug 55

Sept 12

Sept 64

Logan celebrated his third birthday.

Nov 26

The big event of 2010 was, of course, Scarlett’s birth. You can read the story here and here.

Nov 53

5 days old.

2011

Lila celebrated her second birthday.

Apr 91

And she caused me a great deal of stress. Read this story to see how she terrified me when she was only 2 yrs, 1 mo. old, and this one about all the trouble she caused as a toddler.

Logan began preschool.

Sept 27

He also had his first stage performance during his school’s annual day. Daddy had to stand with him to keep him in place.

Logan's Annual day pics

Logan is furthest right in the back.

Logan celebrated his fourth birthday and Scarlett her first.

Nov 30

Nov 62

2012

Lila and Scarlett kept each other company when Logan was at school.

Feb 024

Logan had his first sports day at school. Click here to read the funny story of how he did.

Feb 084

We started making our own popsicles regularly.

March 042

March 041

And we got a new pool for the summer (and the rest of the year).

March 089

Aww…

Logan graduated from preschool.

March 200

Logan and Lila went for their first summer day camp. And you won’t want to miss the story of the longest power cut we had in this house, that happened on this day.

Logan 4 1/2; Lila 2 weeks shy of her third birthday.

Logan 4 1/2; Lila 2 weeks shy of her third birthday.

Lila celebrated her third birthday.

Apr 103

Lila began preschool and Logan move up to kindergarten.

June 055

 

July 037

Lila had her first annual day performance. This was also her first public performance.

Lila is furthest left.

Lila is furthest left.

During an all-night power cut, I almost burned the house down.

Logan celebrated his fifth birthday and Scarlett her second.

SAMSUNG

SAMSUNG

We took the train to Mangalore to visit Nana Mable.

SAMSUNG

2013

This year we sent in our applications for Glad’s and the kids’ visas, and began the long wait for them to be processed.

Logan and Lila took skating lessons for a few months. You can read about it here.

45688_4326366892196_868652310_n

Lila had her first sports day.

66605_4315323256112_816602759_n

Lila graduated from preschool and Logan from kindergarten.

DSC_0064

 

P1080186

 

Lila celebrated her fourth birthday.

947209_4649925020947_1724792020_n

Logan and Lila had a home school year, since we had no idea how long the visa processing would take. I’ve not covered grades so much as focus areas for both of them. Logan has focused on writing skills and printing neatly. Lila focused on learning to read and write. Both have made so much progress and have learned a lot this year.

Scarlett had her first major accident that scared me.

Lila and Scarlett both had their first beauty shop hair cuts.

1379416_10200535792272127_540894313_n

1390487_10200535774791690_1425180407_n

Logan celebrated his sixth birthday and Scarlett her third.

SAMSUNG

SAMSUNG

And we ended the year by driving to Mangalore to spend Christmas and New Year’s with Glad’s mom, his sister and her family.

This house has brought us many adventures. I just spent I don’t know how long going over old posts, looking for things that have happened here that would make interesting reading. It’s good I’ve kept all these records, because my brain just can’t hold so many memories.

If you are really curious, and you have a crazy amount of time on your hands, you can read everything I’ve posted from the time we first moved in to this house. Just go up there where it says “Previous Writings” and select June 2010 as your starting point. Everything after that, up ’till now, happened in this house. Well, except for any travels, of course.

The Little Joys of Summer

Summer is arriving to India once more. We didn’t think we’d be here for another summer but here we are all the same.¬†Despite the heat and daily temperatures of 30 – 32C, it isn’t technically summer yet. It’s not even technically hot yet, seeing as in a month, temperatures will reach highs of over 40C.

Since we are leaving at the end of the month, lots of prep is going on. We promised the person who bought the dining set that we’d have it varnished for them, so today the person who is working on it took all the chairs, meaning there was nowhere to sit for school time.

So I gave the kids the day off from school, and this is what they did this morning.

1939422_10201398949970530_957101557_o

1800053_10201398949930529_1023443585_o

I can’t think of a greater summer joy than sitting in the warm sun, wet from water play, eating a large bowl of ice-cold watermelon.

Let the Countdown Begin

Things are getting exciting around here. We recently heard that the visa status has changed from “application received” to “processing”. From this point it will be 4 weeks minimum before we get the visas. Once we have them in hand, we will be able to book plane tickets!!

Right now the plan is to spend some time at Glad’s mom’s house before we leave, so sometime in the first week of April, we will be driving there again. Thankfully it will only be going and not coming.

We have already sold what we can of our furniture, though it won’t be delivered until just before we leave. It was easier than we expected. We just put photos and the asking price on two local used items websites, and for about 48 hours Glad’s phone didn’t stop ringing. One person bought his scooter. Someone else bought 4 items at one go. Even items we thought we couldn’t sell, such as our very old A/C’s, fridge, t.v., and some pressboard stuff will bring a good amount from a scrap dealer. This extra cash is going to make the trip to Mangalore and living during our time there easier, since Glad is quitting his job once we leave.

I’ve begun going through all the stuff we own, sorting what to keep, what will go to Mangalore but stay there, and what to get rid of, which is by far the largest group. Cutting down is never easy, but it feels good. There is some stuff I’ve wanted to get rid of for a long time, but since I knew we were leaving, I didn’t feel it would be right to replace those things only to have to get rid of them again.

All the household items – furniture, appliances, kitchen supplies, bedding, etc. – are either being sold or given away, so really all that’s left to decide on are toys, books, and clothes. The kids have picked out the cuddle toys they want to keep, plus a few items to take to Mangalore that will be left behind when we go. They need stuff to do while there so we have to carry some things. Books are limited to the ones that aren’t ripped, or that I’d like to read one last time.

Clothes are a biggie. Not that we have loads of clothes, but cutting down means leaving not just the stained or worn out stuff, but some nicer stuff too. Yesterday I had the girls pick out two party dresses to keep and I packed up the rest. They love their fancy dresses, even though they don’t get to wear them often, but we can’t travel with a bunch of dresses that aren’t going to get used any time soon.

So in just a few weeks, we will be leaving this house that has been our home for nearly 4 years. A lot has happened in this house – Scarlett was born here, lots of birthdays, first days of school, holidays – in short, memories. But I’m not sad. We’ve had this move planned for so long, and have been waiting for it to happen for so long, that the excitement is growing, and all of us are eagerly looking forward to finally being in Canada.

Canada, are you ready for us?

Our Mangalore Trip 2013

It’s been nearly a year and a half since we made our big announcement about moving to Canada, and all you’ve heard since is that we’re going but nothing concrete about when. Well, it’s been a long, drawn-out affair. You can read these links if you want to catch up on the details.

Our Move – Progress Update

Our Move – Progress Update 2

Why Our Move is Still Pending

The Canadian embassy strike last year really slowed things down for us. The processing time for visas has gone up to 12 months, meaning we have to wait until the end of March before we can start questioning more delays. We are confident that the visas will come – they have no reason to deny them – it is just a question of when they will come.

We spent Christmas and New Year’s in Mangalore this year. We figured it would be a good idea to spend as much time as we can with Glad’s mom before we leave, since we don’t know when we will see her again. One of Glad’s sisters and her family were also there at the time, so our kids got to spend some quality time with a few cousins.

Ready for a long drive.

Ready for a long drive.

We drove from Chennai to Mangalore, dividing the trip over two days with a stopover in Bangalore. This was our first long drive with the kids. Along the way there were good roads, bad roads, large highways, tiny back roads, and one long drive over a hilly area with what looked like the worst road in the history of roads. This particular road is windy, and to make matters worse, it was so broken up in most parts that we had to go super slow. Parts would be level and then drop into deep ditches, the road would narrow and widen often. It looked like it was full of craters, or that an earthquake had hit. In reality it probably hadn’t been repaved since it was first made. There was roadwork happening but that just slowed us down all the more.

We saw things like a huge truck have a tire blowout, another truck with an elephant in the back, lots of monkeys on the side of the road, and lots of bad driving. And this was the national highway! On our way home we took the state highway which wound through more hills but was nicely paved and had the most gorgeous views.

SAMSUNG

SAMSUNG

There were also lots of trucks overloaded with hay, which made them look like moving haystacks. We took to calling them “one-wheeled haystacks”, from the scene in the movie “The Aristocats” where the butler is being chased by some dogs and his motorbike with a sidecar goes through a haystack and the sidecar gets separated and is driving on its own with the haystack on top.

They looked something like this.

They looked something like this.
Source

During our time in Mangalore, we visited the beach, parks and malls. One thing about Mangalore, it is small and everything is so close. Just down the street from the house there is a natural ice cream parlor, and we became regulars there, all 11 of us. ūüôā We also braved what must have been the world’s smallest photo studio and got family photos taken.

DSC_1937       1

Including 4 days of driving, we were gone for 2 weeks, the longest trip we’ve ever taken with the kids.

Mall outing on Christmas Eve.

Mall outing on Christmas Eve.

When we got home, I spent a few days just cleaning, since dust was thick on everything. Then we got back into our ¬†school routine, interspersed by sickness. Things almost feel normal around here…just hoping the visas will show up soon.

The Little Boy and the Fire Truck

There is a small park near our house where the children go to play on most days. They get to meet and play with children from the neighborhood, and have made a few friends there.

Set up right on the sidewalk next to the park is an ironing cart that looks something like this one.

IMG_5985.1

source

That is what Tamil writing looks like, Tamil being the local language here in Tamil Nadu.

These carts are very common here. Almost every street has one. While we have an iron at home, Glad will often take his work shirts to a cart like this and have them iron a stack for the week, to save him time in the morning.

They use these types of coal irons.

For a lot of poor families, the ironing cart is their livelihood. In order to make enough money to eat that day and buy the coal, they work all day. Many have their small children running around on the sidewalk and street while they work because there is no where else for the children to go.

The family who work the cart next to our park is like that. They have two small children who I’m guessing are under 3 years old. The mother often sends them inside the park to play, which is definitely safer than having them play on the street, but of course they have no oversight.

About 2 weeks ago, the kids and I were at the park and the little boy was there. Everything was going great until he discovered a small plastic animal Logan had brought along but had left on the ground. I let him play with it, but when Logan and Lila found out that he had it, they wanted it back and he wouldn’t give it up. He raced to the low side wall where his mother was working on the other side, and cried as she forced him to give the toy back to Lila, who was standing there trying to explain.

Had Logan been in a different frame of mind, I would have suggested that he let the boy keep it since he has so many at home. But Logan was very upset. These animals are his favorites and he can’t even stand his sisters taking them unless he is in a sharing mood.

As we walked home, Logan kept talking about how naughty the boy was, how he shouldn’t take other peoples toys, etc. I explained to him that the boy wasn’t naughty, but was more likely bored. I told Logan that his family is poor and can’t afford toys (I’ve never seen the children with any) and his parents have to work very hard just so they can eat. I then suggested that perhaps the kids could share some of the toys they never use with this boy and his sister. ¬†Logan freaked out at the idea so I dropped it.

Two days later we were headed to the park again. I reminded my kids about the idea of giving theses kids some toys, and I assured Logan he would not have to give up his favorites. Lila was excited to give them something so together she and I found two toys that never got any use – a sturdy fire truck and a squeaky baby doll.

As soon as we got to the park, Lila wanted to give them the toys so I let her run over to the wall to pass on the toys. The mother was very grateful for the toys and gave the truck to her son right away. Within minutes he was over at the playground, racing the truck over ever surface that he could. He piled rocks and sand for it, and Lila and Scarlett joined him.

I had never see this boy smile before, but that day he had a huge smile. He looked as if he would burst from the excitement of having a toy of his own, which I’m sure he never had before.

There are many poor people here in India, way too many for even the most generous person to help. I rarely give money to those begging, simply because once you do it, they want it every time you pass, and also it is hard to know who is for real and who isn’t. (There are many who aren’t.)

But this situation was different. This is a family who works hard to make ends meet, but can only afford the most basic necessities. The children wear clothes that look like they’ve come from a trash pile, so toys wouldn’t even be on the list of important things for them.¬†Lila sure felt the joy of giving that day. She was so happy to give the toys and see how happy they made this family.

As for me, it reminded me of how good it feels to give help when it is truly needed. It also helped me see that I need to talk about these things with my kids. They have grown up here. They see poor people all the time. They also know that they have pretty much anything they want, and it is hard for them to understand that not everyone can buy whatever they want at any time. This has led to more discussion on the topic of how not everyone is born into an equal station in life.

Their main question is, “Why not?” They don’t see rich or poor. They just see people. It can be hard to explain why some are poor and some are not, without getting into topics they are not ready for. For now, I will teach them to help whoever they can, whenever they can.

 

How do you go about teaching your children to help others?

Why I Hate Power Cuts

One of the things you have to get used to living in India is the power¬†cuts. Power cuts are as common as autos, dhal and dosas – just another part of life here. Chennai, where we live, is having power problems right now, and the entire city has mandated 2 hour power cuts daily. Due to some glitch in the system, our power goes off at the set time but then comes right back on. But I’m thankful for that as summer is here and the temperatures are 35C and climbing, and May will be hotter, over 40C daily.

Why do they cut the power every day? It is called load shedding. The demand for power is higher than what they can produce, so during the hottest time of the year, when an air conditioner becomes a need, everyone has to endure power cuts. Some people have generators and inverters so they can at least run fans at that time. Not us. So on with my story.

It begins last Sunday evening at 10:45 p.m. Logan and Lila had just gone to bed and were still awake; Scarlett was already asleep.¬†I was getting ready to do the dishes when the power goes off everywhere. I took my phone into the kids’ bedroom and used it for light, thinking it would be back in a few minutes. After about 10 minutes, I figured candles would be a better option for light, plus the room was already warming up without the fan and AC on.

11:00 With a candle outside the door for the kids to have light, I leave them to take a shower.

11:10 Finish shower. Come out to find Glad and kids on the balcony. It’s much cooler out there. Kids play and we wait expectantly for the power to come back.

11:30 Scarlett wakes up ’cause she is too hot. Bring her outside, and Glad suggests we put a mattresses outside. Kids lie down and count stars with daddy, then sing “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”.

12:00 Neighbors’ power is back, ours is flickering. There is more singing and star counting.

12:30 We are still awake. My attempts to get Scarlett to sleep again have been unsuccessful. Kids have no desire to sleep. Glad calls electric company numerous times to find out why our house has no power yet. No help from them. He and kids are now passing the time by burning all the leaves that are on the balcony, one at a time, with the candles.  I am so tired but there is no hope of sleeping. While it is cooler outside, it is still hot and there are mosquitoes.

12:45 I get a snack for everyone since dinner was a long way back. Kids and I pig out while daddy keeps calling electric company. I realize that this is a blogable experience so I get my phone and begin taking notes. (That is why all the times are here. I wouldn’t have remembered it otherwise.)

1:10 Tiredness is taking over, replacing the earlier excitement of being up late and playing outside way after bedtime. Kids are lying down on purpose. I still can’t sleep.

1:15 Resign ourselves to a long, hot night outside, while listening to the hum of the neighbors’ AC’s. Glad decides to walk down to the local power station’ which is literally down the street from us, to see if they can help.

1:25 Lila asleep; Logan fussing; Scarlett restless.

1:40 Scarlett still fussing every time someone touches her. Logan asleep. I’m so tired but Scarlett wakes me every time I doze.

1:50 Glad gets back. He found out a cable for our house is damaged and will take a day to repair. Of course work will only begin in the morning. We decide to pack up the kids and a mattress and go sleep at the school Glad works at. (It is a cute house converted into a preschool.) Call a taxi. I pack up sheets and blankets.

2:15 Taxi arrives. I move kids to couch and put their shoes on. Lila wakes up. Glad puts mattress and bag of stuff in taxi, then we take the kids down. Logan and Scarlett are now awake. With Glad leading the way on his scooter, we head off. The ride is a literal 5 minutes as the roads are deserted.

2:20 Arrive at the school. Set up mattress in one classroom. Convince the kids they have to go back to sleep and that they can play there tomorrow (summer camps were starting).

2:30 All in bed. 3 kids and I squish on single mattress. Glad sleeps on quilt on floor.

3:00 Kids finally asleep again. I wake through the night as I am not comfortable.

7:00 Glad wakes me as we have to leave before the staff show up. Drag myself up, try to look presentable.

7:15 Go with girls and mattress and bag in auto. Glad and Logan go on the scooter.

7:20 Scarlett fell asleep again during the ride home. I put her on the mattress that is still on the balcony. Lila lays on couch and refuses to come outside. I make Logan lie down with me and doze while he stays awake. Lila finally joins daddy in the bedroom and sleeps again.

8:15 Glad comes to balcony. Realize I won’t get any more sleep so I make us coffee and give Logan some granola.

8:30 Scarlett wakes up and shares Logan’s granola until I get her some. They sit on the balcony to eat it. Until repairs are done, we have no power so I want the kids to go for their summer camp activities even if they are a little tired. At least they will be cool in the air conditioned classrooms.

8:45 Wake Lila, feed her, dress kids, pack their backpacks with snacks, water and other needs for morning out. Glad heads out and says he’ll be back soon.

9:15 Kids are ready to go, but daddy is still out. He went to get his clothes ironed and I wonder what is taking so long.

9:45 Glad calls to tell me he is getting a hair cut and will be another 10 minutes. Kids are already 15 minutes late. I get Scarlett dressed and shower and dress myself.

10:15 Glad still not back, so I decide to take kids myself, since I also plan to stay out. Glad shows up just as we are out the door. Wants kids to wait while he showers but I said nothing doing and we left. (Activities had started at 9:30).

10:25 Arrive at school and drop kids. This is Lila’s first time being with a group of kids for activities and being away from me in a school-type setting. I hope she will be okay.

10:30 Scarlett and I head to the park next to the school for a few minutes but it is already so hot outside that I take her instead into the large gift shop next to it. We spend the next hour there browsing, getting¬†gift ideas for Lila’s birthday.

11:30 Glad calls to tell me that Lila has had enough, and can I come get her? We walk back.

11:40 Get Lila. She decides she now wants the snack she hadn’t eaten earlier and she and Scarlett share it.

12:00 Head home. Find same auto we went in in the morning (pure chance). Scarlett falls asleep on the way.

12:10 Home. Power still off. Men are digging out front of the house. Looks like a big job. Put Scarlett in bed and make lunch as best I can.

12:35 Glad and Logan come home. Logan said he did a planting activity and he used “dirt, mud, and soil” to plant the seeds. Ha. So cute. We eat, then I convince kids to nap on balcony.

1:00 Logan asleep. Lila still perky since she slept longer in morning. I try to sleep but Lila keeps me awake.

1:30 Scarlett wakes up, nurses, but doesn’t go back to sleep as usual. I give her a snack to try and buy some sleep time.

1:45 Lila asleep. I slept for maybe 10 minutes. I’m so tired but no chance of sleep. Get coffee, sit outside with Scarlett and do puzzles in newspaper.

2:45 Glad calls from work to ask if power is back. Not yet.

3:00 Glad comes home because he is tired. Tries to nap on balcony as I wake kids and prepare to take them to the mall. My head is beginning to hurt from being too hot and tired. Pop a pain killer and get ready to go. Shower again. Glad can’t sleep and heads to the gym instead.

4:00 Leave for mall with kids.

4:15 Arrive and spend the next 2 1/2 hours looking around, eating ice cream, checking out toys and books and taking our time while we cool down. I find some Golden Books for the kids and a book for myself. Go on lots of escalators. (Kids call them excavators. Ha.)

6:00 Decide to go down from 3rd floor by elevator and Logan freaks out like I have never seen. He was screaming, trying to run and bite me all at the same time. Took a good 10 minutes to calm him down and he finally tells me he is scared of the elevator and won’t go on it. Amazingly, Lila was able to hold Scarlett’s hand the whole time and keep her from running off. Finally take the stairs all the way down.

6:30 Leave after picking up a snack and buying a few groceries.

6:45 Home, power is on. Yes! Scarlett falls asleep again.

7:15 Make a quick dinner of egg-in-a-hole while kids watch a video. Scarlett wakes up.

8:15 Showers, get ready for bed, read new books.

9:00 Kids in bed, sleep quickly. Scarlett stays up because of her earlier nap.

10:00 Glad home; Scarlett shares his dinner and some snacks.

11:30 Scarlett finally asleep. I shower for the third time and crash into bed. I sleep so soundly that when I wake in the morning and find Scarlett next to me, I can’t recall taking her out of her crib or nursing her, though I know I did both.

I hope this doesn’t repeat any time soon!!

Linking up today for Confessions from an Impulsive Addict‘s meme Talk To Us Tuesday.

%d bloggers like this: