My parents arrived in town on Friday afternoon. While my dad had met the babies already, my mom saw them for the first time. The reason she delayed so much was that this is the week where I have no big helpers. J. and B. left before the crack of dawn on Saturday morning to go canoeing in the Boundary Waters with the Boy Scouts. M. left at a more reasonable time on Saturday morning to go with our church's youth group for a mission trip to Birmingham, Alabama. Which was leaving me with 7 children, 11 and under. It wasn't the 5 older ones I was worried about, but mainly the two babies. So my parents to the rescue! I'm not sure I would survive this week without them. They have been great at helping to hold babies, especially at night when they both feel the need to nurse. All the time. And when they're not nursing, they are crying. All the time. The hours of 8pm to midnight are not my favorite ones these days. But to make up for it, they have started to smile!
The bigger kids have really loved having Grammy and Grandpa here. Grammy has been giving A., P., and D. intensive piano lessons. (TM opted out.) I had been working with A. and P., but then when the pregnancy was so hard, it was one of the things that went out the window. They are thrilled to be making progress again. D. is also excited to start and has been fairly compulsive about it. I have actually had to tell him to stop practicing the piano.
My parents have also been treating us to some of our favorite restaurant take-out foods, which is a treat since we go out so infrequently. And then there's a movie in the future to look forward to. It's like a mini-vacation.
K. has taken quite a shine to 'ampa, and is constantly crawling on him and showing him things. While this may sound cute, it is a test of the recipient's patience. It involves K. saying(shouting?) 'truck' or 'car' and showing you his latest duplo masterpiece which may or may not look like the vehicle in question. This often is accompanied by him poking your arm at the same time. Just smiling and nodding doesn't cut it for K., he will continue to shout and show you the object until you actually talk to him about it. When you do so, K. happily goes to work to build another 'vehicle' to show you five minutes later. I'm so thrilled that K. has found a new audience and that I get a break.
Just so my mom doesn't feel left out, TM and D. have taken to following her around and subjecting her to constant questioning about any and all subjects (TM) and climbing in her lap or hanging on her arm (D). Maybe after a day of this, holding a crying baby at night doesn't seem so bad. At least they can't ask questions.