I apologize to all you November birthdays out there, but for my life, right now, November is the worst month of the year. (Darn you, time change! Darn you!!)

It doesn't help that we always have vehicle registration in November, which in a very pleasant surprise (miracle???), we passed on the first try. You wouldn't believe the sense of euphoria we felt when that happened. It felt like we had finally gotten a well-deserved break.

Anyways, let's just say it's been a long two weeks of whining, yelling, wrestling, arguing, and not being able to get the kids in bed fast enough. But why focus on that? Here are some good things--

Turns out fears of Ruby being bullied were overblown. She's not dealing with anything above and beyond what any normal kid does. That was also a great relief. Sorry for the false alarm :)

Every day her class walks or runs 1 mile. This week she was very excited to tell us that some kid in her class (we'll call him Dexter) was going to pay the winner of the mile $20. And then just before she left for the bus, she accidentally let slip out that Dexter would give $20 to the winner, but you had to give Dexter $1. I immediately confiscated the dollar that she did indeed have in her pocket.
Woo: So Dexter's getting into race promotion or gambling?
I was thinking more like fraud.

(She did win the mile, and no one got $20, in case you were wondering.)

Here are some things Herbie is proud of and is excited to share with me: when he anonymously shovels the neighbor's walk, invites a friend to church, passes off his multiplication tables, is "top dog" in his class, or when he cleans his room or makes his bed really well. He'll also come home excited about any successes the autistic boy in his class has made that day.
Ruby: Did you know Justin Bieber taught himself the guitar?  
Herbie: Kinda like I'm teaching myself the guitar? 
We don't own a guitar. At least I don't think we do.

Linus got his leg casted this week, and he was able to walk on it right away. Partially because we again requested one cast for the full duration instead of a new one every couple of weeks, and they casted his leg at an angle comfortable for walking right away. He's even able to go play out in the snow. He just wears my snow boot over his casted foot. Linus has done an incredible amount of whining this week, but did make Herbie's bed for him one day, and was very proud.

Moses' attitude change about always trying his best seems to have spilled over into school too. He's now bringing home spelling tests with sentences that are absolutely perfect and written in very neat handwriting. He also keeps bringing home "pink slips," which sound bad, but are actually compliments from reading aids.

Penelope still really believes that she's a mom, and is offended if anyone suggests otherwise. She napped a few times this week, but not enough. It's always amazing to me how little kids, who're low on sleep, are somehow unable to relax and get the sleep they need for a maddening amount of time. Hopefully, this week's the week.

Archie was very excited to see the snow. The other kids thought it was so funny when he walked right up and stuck his bare hand right in the first chance he got, not realizing they'd all done the same thing as babies. He's spent some quality time trying to get boots on his feet, gloves on his hands and hats on his head.

Woo drove down to town with a neighbor on Tuesday to unload some junk at the dump. He took Linus, Penelope and Archie along for the ride. Nobody realized that it was a holiday and the dump would be closed, which it was. The saving grace was the free krispy kreme donut they got at the gas station. Woo decided against sharing with the kids because of the mess they'd make in the back of the neighbor's car, so instead stuffed the whole thing in his face and climbed in.
Linus: It smells like donuts in here!
Well, that's about it. Hope you all had a great week!