Find Joy. Seek Truth. Be Kind.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


We're having a busy summer here. I'm behind in posting my books I know, I've read more than are currently listed, but not much more! :-)

I have my nephews with me for three weeks this summer. My brother is serving his second tour in Iraq right now, and my sister-in-law is working on her M.Ed., trying to finish up, since he is expected back this fall. She needed some to put in some extra work this summer, and also wanted her kids to have a chance to get to know their Colorado relatives, so all of us in CO are taking turns having them with us. My goodness are they a handful!

I have three boys of my own, ages 10, 7, & 3. My nephews are 10 & 8. That means I have 5 (!) boys with me 10 and under. I'm 5 feet tall, (when I'm not quite telling the truth ;-) ), so picture me surrounded by a pack of boys, 3 of them nearly as big as me. Boy, you should see the way folks cringe when we troop into a store! We get lots of attention. "Are they all yours?" :-D This one cracks me up, since the two nephews call me "Aunty April" pretty often, and VERY loudly. Also, their mom is black, so they look noticeably different than my kids. To be fair, we could be a blended or adoptive family. Still, what am I supposed to answer? It could be a personal question. Maybe I was free and loose with my affections! We've had some fun with it. My husband told someone "We've got a couple of rentals". I like to say "They're mine today." But sometimes I want to say "Why? Want to make me an offer?" "I'll take $5 for the noisy one."

We just got back from taking them all camping up at Glendo. We brought our kayaks and sailing dingy too. It was very brave of all of us to do this. My nephews had never been camping. They came with their own gameboys and gamecube. They told me that they don't like to go outside. So our life style of hiking, camping, boating, etc,. is a bit ...ahem... new to them. We have never had 5 boys in our care, so that's pretty new to us. My oldest didn't help, what with talk of mountain lions and bears and rattle snakes. I could have strangled him when my nephews nervously broached the subject with me one bedtime and I realized the source of their mis-information. I was worried - you know how fast a camping trip can go downhill, even with experienced campers. Luckily we had no major mishaps, good weather, and lots of s'mores. The children all had a great time. I did too, something I'm trying to remember as I wade through the piles of smoky smelling laundry.

Well, ok, there was one mishap. But it didn't involve the kids. My husband took our sailing dingy out in a stiff breeze and tried a new maneuver on it. One can presume, since he came to shore on a power boat w/ the dingy in tow, that it could have gone better. Still, since there were no children with him at the time, he was wearing his PFD, and the power boaters didn't claim salvage rights, all was well in the end.

It's interesting how 5 nice boys which ,when taken individually, are each great kids, become a pack of misbehaving miscreants when spending any time at all together. I can't believe I had to explain why chanting "Bacon! Bacon!" loudly at a restaurant isn't ok, even if it is just a fast food place. Then there's the difference in socialization. My youngest has taken to copying his cousins' speech. "Ya, Riiiight" he says sarcastically. Aghhh!! I don't need that from a 3 year old.

But it does go the other way too. Being UU's my kids have a concern for the environment and took to picking up every bit of garbage they found at the park. It didn't take long before the cousins were helping and being taught which was recyclable and which wasn't. Unfortunately there was a lot of it, the 4th of July weekend having just passed. "Mama, lots of people must like this kind of soda" said my 7 yo holding up another empty Bud Light can. LOL!

Life with 5 boys is busy, noisy, exhausting, and, yes, fun. But I'm not sure I'll be doing it again any time soon!

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