I hate this time of year. It's no secret that I'm not a fan of living in Las Vegas and temperatures of 110+ are a part of that reason. Humans should not be capable of surviving in such heat. It's like baking in an oven. But I hate this time of year for another reason. It creeps up every year and as much as I prepare myself I still hate it. Jim normally travels for his job. But this time of year, it goes from "so are you going anywhere this week?" to "oh, it's Monday? See you Friday." It sucks.
I started this blog to keep track of our lives and Jim is such a huge part of our lives. Obviously - because none of the kids would be here without him - ahem. When I started this blog I wasn't sure how he would feel about it. I wondered if he would think that I was sharing too much personal information with the world. But he loves it and that makes me really happy. Jim is a fantastic dad and husband. All of us girls are so in love with him. I tend to write mostly about my day to day interactions, but I want them to remember all the things they do with Jim as well. So here are a few...
1. Jim takes one or both older girls with him on almost every errand he runs. And he runs lots of errands. Including doing 90% of the grocery shopping. This is because I absolutely suck a grocery shopping. I can go to the store and spend an hour and half and come home with nothing of use. He can go to the store and spend less than an hour and have meals with multiple components for the week, plus stuff to freeze for later. So anyway, he always takes the older girls. Sometimes he'll ask just one of them to go, but the other one ultimately always wants to go too and he just can't say no. Which also gives me a nice little break. And even when he has a ton of work to do before he leaves, he goes to the store for me so that I'm set up for the week.
2. He's fun. He takes them swimming. He lets them watch movies. He makes them fun snacks. He lets them stay up late. He gets us out of the house to go and do things. If it were up to me we might never leave the house. To get everyone ready and get everything ready to go is a pain. Plus someone might be near nap time or something. But his famous saying is, "Relax!" Which can be infuriating at times, but he helps us get ready and after we're out I'm always glad he encouraged it. We wouldn't go out much if it was just me and the girls wouldn't have nearly as much fun.
3. He has such a great relationship with the girls. He's a very grounding presence. I worry too much and try and control everything (I'll admit it). He's more of a go with the flow kind of guy. And thank God for that because these girls would already be in therapy if they didn't have him around to basically keep me in check and lighten up life for them. I'm amazed at how easily he can turn a tense situation with Olivia into giggles. But he has that ability. It's one of the reasons I fell in love with him. He can make us laugh. He also has a very sweet, loving side. He's always there for the girls with a hug or a kiss if they get hurt. He always has encouraging words for them. He encourages their imagination. He listens to them - really listens to what they have to say. And even when he gets mad and yells, he always apologizes for yelling and has a conversation with them about what happened.
4. He makes us dinner (actually most meals) when he's home. This isn't just about cooking (which is fantastic), but more about the time he can spend with us. He is gone a lot. And when he's gone its 24 hours out of that day. But when he's here - even if he's working in town - he's home in the late afternoon or he's working from home. Which means we get to sit down together and have breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Which sounds like our lives revolve around food (um, well, mine does sometimes) - but really it's just time. Time that he's around and we're talking and hanging out as a family.
I knew Jim would be a great dad. But I didn't know that he would help me be a better mom. I thought I'd be stellar all on my own, but he helps me everyday to see how incredibly awesome this family is and to enjoy every minute. He doesn't let me beat myself up when I think I've "messed up" somehow. He helps me focus on the positive. We miss him desperately when he's gone. Every time the air conditioner kicks on Emily thinks its the garage door opening and her eyes light up and she looks at me and yells, "Daddy?!" There is a definite emptiness in this house. But we'll get through it and it just makes us enjoy the weekends that much more.
Olivia started swim lessons this week. She's doing great and loves it. At the end of class the teacher throws some weights into the little shallow end of the pool and the kids have to go and find them. I guess the teacher tells them to keep their eyes closed while she's "hiding" the weights in the pool. When they turn around they are supposed to open their eyes to find the weights. So Olivia - my sweet, little, literal - Olivia. She was crawling around, with her eyes closed, feeling for the weights. It broke my heart and made me laugh at the same time. She seemed a little annoyed when I told her she was supposed to find the weights with her eyes open. "But why?" she said. Maybe she thought it was too easy that way.
Abby rolled over from front to back yesterday. Which is great, because she was getting stuck on her stomach and I'd have to roll her over all the time. She's also starting to wiggle and try and launch herself when she's on the floor. This is terrifying - she's just that much closer to crawling!