Summer, Kinda

The three oldest kids are out of school now. After one day of no school it was clear that Herbie needed more work. It’s times like these I wish we had 50 acres for Herbie to build a fence around or something. I think he would really enjoy that kind of thing. 

But we don’t have 50 acres. We don’t even have a yard. Instead, Herbie swept out the entire garage (of the apartment building), cleaned fingerprints off the wall all the way up and down the stairwell (he disliked this job), swept our two terraces, deep cleaned and organized our front entry, patched and sanded dings in walls, vacuumed out the van and 3 closets (and pretty much the rest of the apartment), made a pound cake and left a plate with a slice for each sibling where they would find it when they came home, watered our vegetable plants (only the peas are thriving), pumped up all the flat soccer and basketballs, cut Moses’ hair, and so on…

The three younger kids still have school for two more weeks. (And I’ve heard that the plan is to start school two weeks earlier in the fall.) After a rough morning I emailed the younger three’s teachers to find out if they would fail if we pulled them out of school a week early.

It was only a question, but it was not the teacher’s favorite email :), and one teacher never answered…

Anyway, Linus has missed one day of school a week for about a month, with various types of feeling unwell. It was clear we were not just pretending when the school called us Tuesday morning to pick Linus up after his first class. He couldn’t stop shaking and he felt like he was going to faint or throw up.

Linus came home and laid in bed for about an hour, and then he picked up his crochet book and taught himself how to crochet a granny square.

He did about four that afternoon and made plans for a blanket for him and for Herbie and a scripture case…

When I went up to check on kids before going to bed, Linus was still awake.

“I’m too excited about crocheting!”

When I laughed he said, “I really am!”

Anyway, it didn’t help his health, I’m sure. But he does have something to look forward to.

He has prayed to get out of school early all week, and always prayed that that day will be the last day, but he finished out the week.



Moses has been enjoying his first half week of summer break, playing basketball or soccer in the park a couple times a day with his siblings and burning through the Three Investigators. He’s reading about three a day.

I was somewhat sad as a mom to find that the Three Investigators were out of print, and I couldn’t share them with my kids. I had read every one that the library had as a kid, and I could never read Hardy boys or Nancy Drew because I felt they were inferior.

But now I can print them! After they’d read a couple, I asked Ruby, Herbie, Moses and Linus their opinion, and they each, separately, had the same opinion I’d had.

Moses had class as usual up until the last day, but all his teachers let them out a few minutes early so they could play soccer during breaks. Soccer was outlawed all year until this last week, so it was as good as a party for Moses.

Penelope had never read the first Anne of Green Gables. She devoured it during all her free time, and when she was done brought me the book with a funny look on her face.

Me: Are you okay, Penelope?

She frowned and smiled, laughed and groaned.

“I didn’t want it to end!!!”

We were surprised this week with a package containing a scripture case for Archie that we had ordered back in January and thought had been cancelled because it was out of stock.

Herbie (who has always had a soft spot in his heart for scripture cases, especially red ones) was home when it came, and he filled it all up with Archie’s scriptures, hymn book, notebook and a couple of pencils. Then he put it in Archie’s cubby and requested we say nothing to Archie so he’d be surprised at scripture time.

We didn’t say anything, but Archie found it beforehand with a squeal of delight. He inspected all the pockets and their contents, hugged his scripture case, carried it with him everywhere and told me how much he loved them and the red color.

We use all that stuff when we read scriptures as a family, and to be honest, collecting it all each evening has been beyond Archie, most days. But now it is all nicely put together, and he’s succeeded in bringing it and cleaning it up most nights since then. Friday night he was too tired to do much of anything.

Penelope also recently purchased a clipboard for herself, which she has loved, and everyday she writes lines and lines of repentance lists, gratitude lists and scriptures answers to family questions and her own personal questions.

Woo got his first shot this week. He did research into which vaccination he’d prefer, and in the end there wasn’t a choice. He got the Pfizer and will be back in four weeks.

He recommended that I bring some water with me when I get mine because he had a few minutes of sweating and really needing a drink after the shot, but there was none to be had. He said a few prayers, and it passed.

He came home feeling a little bit celebratory, so he ate a McKennedy peanut butter cup.

Last Saturday, I printed out a couple of great drawing books, and all the kids were enthralled for hours. Even kids who don’t normally like to draw.

I’ve been working on getting an article and picture of the new branch presidency in the local news.

No masks is friendlier, but masks are in keeping with the law.

And that’s our week!