That sounds like the title of a fashion spread doesn't it? One featuring bright, whimsical dresses. I'm picturing something yellow with large white polka dots, fitted at the waste, full, knee-length skirt.
This post has nothing to do with that.
Think flare as in, bursting into an intense flame, to intensify suddenly.
June... sweet happy June. Yes, Kaden had a camp the very first week and Toby had swim lessons the very next... but we were home and we were doing things at and near home. Those were simpler times. Our biggest dilemma was deciding which local beach to go to or what day should we try the new, local water park...
Then, on July 4th we left for our first road trip. Our Lousiana, Texas, Alabama roadtrip. After this road trip we got to leave Kaden and Blue in Tampa for Camp Gran and Papa, so you'd think with only one kid we'd have a chance to recover, but no. That week, all week, Toby decided to sleep poorly and have diarrhea and overall, it didn't end up being a relaxing week.
By, July 25th, when the International Fragile X Conference rolled around we were SO READY just to leave and be in a hotel without kids. Ready enough that, although we attended the mixer the first night, we went straight to bed as soon as it was over. I think that was at 9:00pm.
And the conference. I'm still hoping to sit down and go over my notes and get on-line to print up graphics and handouts from the workshops I liked best. And process. And digest. And blog. And employ the visual strategies I learned about that I'm convinced will make our lives easier.
Sigh. One of these days.
After the conference we were home for all of ONE DAY before heading off on our SECOND TWO WEEK ROAD TRIP of the summer.
Yup, we're crazy.
We spent four days at a lake house getting in two hikes and waterfall swims. It was the only true vacation part of our summer and was kinda sorta relaxing. If only the boys hadn't insisted on starting every day at 6am.
Immediately following the reception we took off for Wilmington, NC.
We rolled in around 2:30am.
The drive was fine. The kids all crashed around 10pm and stayed alseep. Until we arrived. And then Kaden and Blue went back to sleep, but Toby, not so much.
Toby proceeded to scream and rage and pull my hair and scratch me on and off until almost 6am.
It's one thing to go a night without sleep. It's another to spend that night with a raging toddler.
Thank goodness our hosts live in a large house and claim not to have heard him. (Or else they were just very gracious which is possible too.)
I was spent.
We were in Wilmington for part of Kevin's deputation and he was speaking in church on Sunday (Needless to say, after the night I'd had, he went alone.) and again to a group on Monday evening. Sunday Toby woke up essentially as pissed as he was before going to sleep, so I told Kevin that there was a good chance we were going home Tuesday morning and all his other appointments would be cancelled. He could drive up to his South Carolina speaking engagement the following Sunday without us. And because I was saying this while sobbing, with scratches on my arms, he knew to agree and agree quickly.
And Monday afternoon I got to chill at my Wilmington BFF's house and even though this was a new house, around a new person (he'd been before but at 2 months and 11 months, so nothing he'd remember) Toby was happy and played and followed instructions and I thought who is this child?
So we stayed.
And I got to go to my favorite beach at a time when three dolphins were gracious enough to splash by. And I got to be downtown and walk around when Jennifer Aniston was gracious enought to be shooting a scene for We're the Millers so me and my gal friends hung around for about an hour and watched the filming.
Toby had some more rough nights and I have a nice scratch next to my right eye thanks to one of them, but overall it was a great week in one of my favoritest places to be, where some of my favoritest people in the world live.
So glad we could stay.
Saturday we packed up yet again, this time for South Carolina. Our friend, Ryan, is now senior pastor of his church, so Kevin was able to speak in their services Sunday morning. We like Ryan and his wife, Courtney enough that, that's who spent our Montana/10th Anniversary trip with last summer. And the boys love their daughter.
And head home, we finally, finally did on Monday, August 13th - exactly one week before the boys start school.
Whew. Last week of summer.
Have we lounged and relaxed and had pajama wearing, movie watching days during this last week?
Summer flare, people. Not summer wind-down. Not summer wrap-up. FLARE.
We get in Monday, dinner time, before bed on Monday I'd been to the grocery store and done two loads of laundry.
Tuesday morning we brought Kaden to baseball camp.
Yup, another camp. Three days with our local minor league baseball team. They get to play games on their field and be announced by the real announcer. It's way cool.
Kaden was recognized one of the days for being the best pitcher. Uh huh.
This week we also... Hit up My Gym. Hit up a splash pad. Kevin flew Wednesday and Thursday. We had a meeting at church one night. I had a book group. Plus the usual cooking, cleaning, kiddo entertaining.
And then came Friday.
This has been a long day.
We were out the door by 8:30 so we could spend our morning at the beach.
It was perfect. Flat water. No stinging anything. Toby kept taking my hand and pulling me into the water saying, "Swim, swim," because he liked it when I'd use the boogie board to kick us out way, far into the water.
We could have stayed all day.
Except we couldn't.
We were limited to about 2 1/2 hours.
Today was open house day at the schools. And I have three boys attending three different schools all holding their open house/meet the teacher events at the same times. Woo-hoo.
Luckily I'd roped my mom into helping me make that work, so she stayed with Toby while Blue, Kaden and I went out, first visiting Blue's school and kindergarten class and then going over to Kaden's school and third grade room. After that, I switched with my mom and took Toby by himself. By that time we were past the window of open house, but the speech therapist had told me she'd be there 45 minutes longer and I liked the idea of showing up after the crowds had dissipated. Yes, going AFTER the allotted time is definitely the way to go.
Wait, Toby? School? What? Isn't he just three?
Yes, but his speech and OT services are now through the school and this was my chance to introduce him to his room and meet his new speech therapist and pin down his schedule. Amazingly, all this was accomplished.
While I was running around, Kevin planned a movie night with another family, so I got home from the last open house and immediately started cleaning and dessert making. (Dinner was just pizza.)
Fun, social dinner time followed by kiddos and Kevin watching a movie, the other parents sneaking off to be kiddo free, and me holing up in our office.
One more weekend and then school will be in session and normal life resumes.
This weekend is my mom's birthday and our anniversary. Next weekend is a VBS event at church where I'm leading music and Kevin is leading the bible story segment. Weekend after that... Labor Day and guess what? We have plans.
This is a long lasting flare.
This may be the longest summer of my life.
Just gotta make it through Labor Day.... Just gotta make it through Labor Day... Just gotta...