Thursday, August 30, 2007

What a Great Family!

Diane and her family came down from Oklahoma to spend a day at Six Flags Over Texas and another day at Hurricane Harbor. We'd previously agreed that I'd feed them Sunday night (after their five hour drive down) and Monday night (after their day at Six Flags). They wanted to hit the road after Hurricane Harbor, so I never even got to ask, "Was it fun?" It hadn't occurred to me that the kids might not really like what I cooked for dinner (Husband's Delight casserole and cheddar beddar stew casserole with a peppery salad), but it didn't bother me, either. Em and I ate the leftovers for 3 days and I didn't have to cook! Chicken tacos with corn on the cob seemed to go over real well with the kids on day two, so keep that in mind when y'all think about cooking dinner for children.

Sunday evening, No. 1 was available, ate dinner with and accompanied us to the local park so the kids could run off their "road aches". We left Steve home with Em to watch sports on TV and just chill for a while while we did the park. Diane seemed a bit surprised to see Nellie hold No. 1's hand to cross the one street separating us from the park, as she's going through that "stranger anxiety" phase. Those two seemed to have a good time, to me, though:

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Diane and I didn't get any "get to know each other IRL" time on Sunday, and everyone was pretty tired from a full day at Six Flags, so after dinner on Monday I laid pillows and comforters around the living room, turned on "Nemo" (in your honor, No. 2!) for the kids to watch and sat at the kitchen table with Diane. Em busied himself cleaning up after dinner while Steve watched Nemo and the kids in the living room. Nellie, of course, gravitated towards mom:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket I didn't even clean before they came because I thought, "Who would clean BEFORE 5 kids come in the house? Clean AFTER 5 kids come in the house!" But, I could have/should have cleaned, because these kids didn't moan, didn't whine, didn't mess, just behaved like every parent's dream of how their kids behave in someone else's house. WHAT A GREAT FAMILY!

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Part of the reason why I offered to feed these people on their stay down here was to pay back Diane for her generosity in sending me (a total stranger) plants and seeds to get a garden started last year. She didn't begrudge me the payback, but brought supplies to make both No. 1 and me custom-made hula hoops, so now I owe her AGAIN! Damn that woman!

Here's the stuff she brought before she made them for us. That darlin' in the front is Charlie. She has 4 boys and 1 girl, but Charlie is the TOKEN BOY being pictured alone on this blog. Just goes to show: We're all about girls around here. (j/k) I spent a good hour talking to Cody, though, and he's quite the nice young man, as is Isaac.

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Never got a chance to get to know Duke, and every single picture I took of him was blurred. Sorry, son! Next time.

On that hula-hooping, check it out:

Skirt-hooping is pretty awesome, too:

That wasn't skirt-hooping. Damnit! Maybe one of these is of skirt-hooping, because I thought that was pretty cool, too. [Think of the exercise possibilities, No. 2!] You really need to join us in hooping!

Diane's talkin' about makin' the trip down a more frequent event, so it's conceivable that I have more chances to bungle things. Bring it on, Diane!


No. 2 said...

I think there's room for hula hooping in our apartment. Jen would probably love that!

Oldnovice said...

The music from that first video tends to get stuck in your head (Well, it got stuck in MY head), so some days I can't think of anything BUT hula hooping. See what I mean? "Damn that Diane!" (chuckles off into the sunset)...

Oh...about that other matter you were having difficulties with, I've solicited the advice of those with experience, encouraging them to contact you directly.

Diane said...

Ew. I remember now why I hate photos of myself. And Steve looks stoned. Oh, yeah, what a great family. LOL

We had so much fun! You were a GREAT hostess and I want the recipe to that pot pie goop dish you made! (I already know the how-to on the husband's delight and the Mexican.)

Yes, Nellie's definitely in the midst of not just stranger anxiety but anyone-but-Mom anxiety it seems to me. Yet, she ran off happily with No. 1. Just wow. No. 1 has the magic touch -- and one of those really good hearts that little ones just know they can trust. A good thing to have.

I *think* I'll finally have time to put up my trip pics today, as well as a mini-trip we took yesterday and whatever else I've missed since then.

Oldnovice said...

You look great, Diane, and you know it. PFFT!

The goop was a variation of Cheddar Beddar Stew. I pretty much throw in whatever veggies I like and Em & No. 1 love it every time.

I'd figured that kids might not enjoy my cooking as much as Em and No. 1, so I made the two dishes that were totally different on night 1 so we wouldn't be stuck with leftovers of the same thing like we were the week before when I brought two casseroles to a peace meeting. Why would you ask for the recipe of something your kids didn't particularly like? Cooking for adults in the near future? Oh, yeah... the Arkansas event is forthcoming.

The good thing about having a daughter who is good with kids is that she's ALSO a daughter who's good with old people (because the older we get, the more we behave like little children). She was terrific with Lucky, too, and she'll make a great social worker if she can get through these last few years of school. She'll never be rich in that field of work, but (hopefully) she'll come home at night realizing that she done good.

I'll give your blog a look-see.

Oldnovice said...

More pics can be seen of Diane's visit here.

Diane said...

Why would you ask for the recipe of something your kids didn't particularly like?

Because they WOULD like it if they were hungry. They're never much hungry after being strapped in the van for an hours-long trip. Not burning off energy and all of that. Usually, their "I don't like it" means, in reality, "I'm not really hungry right now". So, just because they turn up their noses at something doesn't mean that they won't like it when they're hungry. Besides, both Steve and I loved it. The kids can always have water and bread crumbs.