Not that I am complaining - we are that much closer to Spring! We have settled nicely into our new/old routine with Nate leaving every Monday morning and getting home every Thursday night. We LOVE this schedule, and he is working on a project he loves with a great client. So, things are good.
The end of January was a blur with getting ready for the Trek kickoff fireside (which went really well) and then general business last week. We had a great weekend. Having Nate home on Friday was wonderful - I teach a class on Friday afternoons and it was so nice to have him here to manage the kiddos (and he even baked cookies during class so that we ended with a nice warm snack. Mmmm.) Then we enjoyed a great family movie night on Friday night. We watched "The Music Man" - which I hadn't seen for at least 10 years. The kids loved it and were all marching around with the band by the end.
Saturday we got up early for Nate's church basketball game, then went shopping together for new boots for Sam (he lost one in a snowdrift and after much searching we have accepted the fact that we will not see it until Spring!) and for groceries. I'm always amazed how much more expensive a trip to the store is if I take Nate! The kids are pretty good about accepting it when I say "We don't need that this week" but it is harder to say that to the man who is making the money!
I stayed home with the little ones while Nate took Sam to basketball - his game was right at naptime this week so we thought it would be best not to take everyone. While they were gone a friend of ours called to say that they had a pair of tickets to the Boston Symphony that night that they couldn't use and would we like them. Of course I said yes! and quickly found a babysitter! So, Saturday night was our first visit to Boston's Symphony Hall. We had a wonderful evening together and I really enjoyed the performance - honestly, even more than I expected. They were performing a Verdi Opera - "Simone Boccanegra" and were joined by a number of excellent singers and a full choir. It was really neat. I was worried about understanding exactly what was going on (only having read a brief synopsis of the story), but fortunately they had English "supertitles" - projected on a little black screen above the stage (is that normal for operas? if so, I will be much more likely to go).
Sunday was a wonderful Fast Sunday - and the first time this year that I was able to attend all 3 meetings in my own ward, which was lovely! We enjoyed "the big game" on Sunday afternoon - which at our house was a rousing Connect Four tournament (yes there were brackets and playoffs). Samuel was victorious! We did make a football cake for dessert - we had seen one at the bakery at the grocery store the day before and decided that we could recreate it at home. It was really fun to bake with the kids and not be worried about how it turned out because it was just for us! (Although, it turned out really cute so it would have been fine for company too! I should have taken pictures!)
We had a great Family Night (now that Nate is traveling again we do that on Sunday evenings), and a relaxing evening cleaning up together and reading after the kiddos were asleep. Nate's phone alarm didn't go off for some reason on Monday morning, but he was able to catch a flight an hour later so it was fine.
I had a good day yesterday - with a good, deep conversation with a dear friend that now has me examining much of what I am doing with my life (particularly in relation to my mothering and my calling). Nothing major, but I think that it is good to continually examine our lives and where we can improve.
In other news ...
Isaac is really enjoying preschool at the Parker's house. His handwriting is improving immensely.
Grace has become so independent. She is very helpful and sweet. I think that the terrible-twos are over! (She turns three on the 18th!) A good illustration - I often tease the children when they say "I'm thirsty" (or hungry, or tired, or whatever) by saying "Hi Thirsty! I'm Mom!" (or Hi Hungry, or Tired, or Whatever). Sam just rolls his eyes, but Isaac gets mad and stomps his foot and says "Moooooom!" So, I did it to Grace on Saturday as we were getting out of the car and she replied very calmly "Mom, my NAME is not thirsty. My name is Grace. Grace is thirsty." It was so cute and matter-of-fact. She was so filled with patience for this silly Mom who clearly just doesn't get it!
Jonas has more officially become "Jack" at our house. He shows a preference for the name and responds much faster when we call him that. Nate has called him Jack his whole life, but it took me longer to come around (I love both names). The last few days the kids will correct me if I call him Jonas instead of Jack, it is cute. Isaac calls him "Jack, Jack attack!"
Nate brought a big box of toys down from the attic for us to sort through this week - and it has been like Christmas at our house. They have "rediscovered" some old things that they are loving (and I am loving the big basement playroom so that I don't have to see the mess!).