Man. It’s been toooooo long! Don’t worry. I’m okay. Everything’s okay. Life has just been in fast forward and I’m losing my mind a little bit but also sort already at that point that maybe I’ve just gone crazy because everything’s pretty good today.

Let’s see. Where to begin….

I got to spend the weekend before last in my favorite city with 99% of my favorite people and it was heavenly. As always, it was too short but holy cow does a weekend reminiscing and catching up and drinking and laughing and hugging do the body good. It was Seth’s second time meeting some of my fav college girlfriends (first time was the wedd’n) which I know seems sort of weird but they live hours and hours away – mostly in the windy city – and everyone is grown up and career’d up and a lot are married and some have babies and you know how that goes -> like a blink of an eye. Amen, sister. Anyway, it was a special thing for me to get share them with Seth and Seth with them – it always feels good when the “family” grows. It’s a special kind of heartwarming, you know?

After that, we road tripped back to Omaha last Sunday with a hefty hangover and a full heart. After swapping kids and coolers and tables and misc items with with my parents at our half way point, there was a fair share of flies in the car. I was too hung over to realize it when we left but this would mean I’d spend the second half (my half to nap) of our drive repeatedly getting woken up by screams of terror, flailing arms and legs, giant tears and eyes filled with fear because a fly landed on Matty. For those of you who are unaware, kids are funny and so are the things they are afraid of. Matheson, for example, is terrified of flies – and I’m not using the term “terrified” lightly. My heart actually ached for him because you could just see the fear in his eyes, not to mention hear it in his blood-curdling screams. All I could imagine was being strapped into a seat and confined to a small box while bats flew around my head. Which ironically was a lot like my Halloween Saturday evening – karma is a bitch.

Anyway, we survived and made it back home to realize everyone was plagued with an illness. Kids – the gift that just keep giving. I spent the rest of the week hoping I didn’t have some adult case of lingering mono and going to bed at 7:30. Seth, after losing his grandma early in the week, earned the award for dad of the year for picking up my slack and handling life’s curve balls like a pro. And between the two boys, it’s official, everything in our home is covered in snot. Come on, over! I’ll show you the best invention ever made – the NoseFrida!

And of course Friday was the boys’ school’s Halloween party day. Matty, obsessed with birthday parties, adorably kept referring to it as his birthday party. He actually thinks any party is his birthday party so I think we’re probably in for a long holiday season. Of course I forgot his costume when I dropped him off at school, so I dropped off a pair of red boxer briefs and a life-sized stuffed snake over lunch. I procrastinate. Thank God for the Jungle Book. But just as I was leaving for the party, I got a call from the director of the center and poor Matty had woken up from his nap with a 104.5 temp that had dropped to 102.5. Protocol for those types of fevers is to send the kids home but, bless her heart, she said if he was up for it, he should at least stay for the beginning of the party. When Seth and I arrived we were told he refused to take his shirt off, so instead of Mowgli he looked like a tiny wrestler battling an allergy attack. Needless to say, he wasn’t interested in staying which was so sad (I think I probably get more excited for these things than he does) because this is the second holiday party Matty has missed due to random illness This first was his Valentine’s day party when he got sent home for a mysterious rash which would later be diagnosed as – SURPRISE! – strep. Ugh.

Luckily, over the course of the evening and Saturday morning, everyone seemed to get the rest and family time they needed so we were able to resume our Saturday evening Halloween plans at the zoo as scheduled. If our family as a foursome had a second home, it’d probably be the Henry Doorly Zoo. Attending their holiday events is always a good compromise because Seth and I enjoy them just as much as the kids…well, maybe not quite as much but almost. But with that said, their Halloween spectacular was amazing. I got attacked by bats which I think was hilarious for everyone else but me (aka Matty’s life while we were driving home – see above). Matty had the time of his life in a kid-crazy foam pit. Abbott danced like the happy baby he is. And we all took too many pictures in those ridiculous-but-awesome wooden photo props where you put your face in the hole. It was a great chance for the four of us to enjoy each other and regroup as a family, which is just what the doctor prescribed.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve really spent a lot of time thinking about how quickly the boys have grown up and how quickly it’s all bound to go. Our life lesson this month seems to be anchored in learning to enjoy every little bit while we have it – because it’s not guaranteed. As a best friend of mine who lost her dad way too early and is much wiser than her years is always telling me (and would tell you, too) – don’t sweat the small stuff, enjoy it. And so this Halloween, as I sent my kids to school in no costume and have made no plans for trick-or-treating I’m going to gladly chalk it up to “maybe next year” and simply enjoy the fact that we have tonight to carve pumpkins together and that we have each other to do nothing with otherwise.

Tomorrow, the countdown to Thanksgiving begins and maybe some of those “things I’m thankful for” posts and articles will pop-up soon after that, but I’m going to start mine today. There are a lot of things I’m grateful for but…today, I’m the most thankful for today.

Happy Halloween!
Here’s to hoping for many more survived bat “attacks”, cars full of flies and Halloweens together.

 

“Marty’s Halloween party where he was supposed to be Mowgli but refused to take his shirt off and had a 102 fever so he looked more like a little wrestler trying to feed a stuffed snake cupcakes while having an allergy attack. It’s cool.”

“Free flying bats” – AKA BATS EVERYWHERE – DARTING AT YOUR HEAD, ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK