Welcome to today’s hell.

A gift to Katie from a well-meaning aunt. While Katie does love puzzles, of course she doesn’t have the attention span for this (hell, I barely do) but she really wants to color it. If it was up to me I’d just throw it in the trash (well I’m not an idiot, I’d give it away). But guess who will end up doing it all?? Her face just about sums it up for me too. 😂

#whowantstohelp
#idonthavetimeforthis
#puzzleparty
#ihavewineandmargaritas
#whendotheygobacktoschool
#thisauntisonmyshitlist

A friend is going to come help Friday.

Len Summer Christmas 2017

Nick and Gracie making Christmas M&Ms (the rest went into Lisa’s monster cookies).

Just a few brats to cook…

All the kids like to fish but they say Aubrey is the one who loves it the most and is the best at it. She apparently gives lessons to other kids at their house!

Katie caught a fish!

Someone took an unplanned jump into the river (learning you can’t walk on lily pads):

Drying off…

I think this picture is a tradition.

And the mandatory annual family Christmas photo! Every year they give us grief about taking it… And this year with the craziness of the move I didn’t post it immediately and they were all asking about it!! So there. :p

And the annual kid comparison—Katie is getting closer to Aubrey but Aubrey is still ahead (which should be the case, as she’s almost 9). And as usual, Owen is definitely taller than Gracie…

But I think he beats Nick this year!!


Last year:

More fishing!

After a campfire and s’mores it was time for bed. The kids decided to all sleep in the living room… Poor Timmy. :)

 

Owen’s first big league baseball game!!

Lisa and Lori are huge baseball fans and Tom has wanted to take Owen to a professional baseball game since we’ve been here, so it seemed fitting that they all go together while Katie and I stayed home. I wouldn’t have minded going, but I know Katie would have gotten bored (she’s used to being able to run around and play with her friends during Owen’s SHORT games, so I couldn’t imagine her sitting for a three-hour game) so I kept her home and took her to the Friday Night Swim instead.

Owen even had the right cap to wear as one of his previous baseball teams was the Nationals! (He thought her had a shirt, too, except we determined that was the season they only got plain red shirts with logo caps.)

They got home about 11:30 (there was an hour metro ride home after the game) and Owen was STILL excited when he walked in the door. I’m so glad they got to go and he got to see everything!

It’s official: we’re headed to Chicago!

Well, what can I say about the military other than you just never know what’s going to happen…?!

For the past few months we’ve been thinking we’ll be headed to California. Tom’s top two job choices were there and we haven’t been on that coast yet, so we thought it was all set. It was a catch-22 for me—I know I would love the weather but it was SOOO far from family. It’s hella expensive there…but when else are we going to get the chance to test living there for three years? But I had honestly just started to wrap my head around it and get kind of excited about it…when Tom got an URGENT email from the monitor with text that included “Ignore this message at your own peril.” Yeah, that’s never good.

Turns out they need recruiters AGAIN. And he fits the four-point requirements perfectly (correct rank, summer mover, previous excellent record in recruiting, etc.). And the positions are in the Chicago area, Pennsylvania, San Diego, and Parris Island, South Carolina.

Crap.

So long story short…after calling and talking to the monitor, they had eight people and six positions to fill. Which wasn’t quite the odds we were hoping for. But good news, Tom was the first to respond so he’d likely get his top choice (and at the very least, he wouldn’t get the place he did NOT want). So…our top choice was Chicago (to be closer to family), followed by Pennsylvania and California.

Of course, it wasn’t an immediate done deal. They had to check some other things and yada yada yada they told us we would know by the end of January if he would be doing recruiting or if we’d be back to waiting to hear on our previous California options. Then I think it was only like four days until they said he was officially tapped for the recruiting in Chicago (well, technically Great Lakes Naval Station).

And they already have his web orders completed so this is serious.

So, yuck for weather…but yay for being 7 hours from Papa and Grannie and 6 hours from Gramma Jean and Grandpa David.