Not that anyone really cares, but sorry for the very late post. I'm still struggling with a bit of post-holiday hangover. I've decided that I don't care for Independence Day falling on a Sunday because it creates a three-day celebration instead of just one. Please don't think me unpatriotic. I'm not. I'm just the mother of small children. And the kids made it abundantly clear that three days is too many. Can you say, "meltdown?" We really did have a fun weekend - Romney family get-together on Saturday plus fireworks for Troy and Stomper that night with friends at Sugarhouse park. More friends for dinner on Sunday - nothing big, but we couldn't let the actual 4th of July pass without doing something, right? Then Monday was the annual burger-fest and early evening fireworks at The Becky's. Plus, both Adam's and Peter's families have been in town and we've had lots and lots of good cousin time. Zoo, sleepover, hanging out, cousins beating the crap out of each other... more on that in a moment... Basically I can't believe it's Friday already and I have accomplished almost nothing but feel fulfilled with lots of time with beloved friends and family.
Back to the beating the crap out of each other. So. Stomper has but one male cousin on the Romney side, and thankfully they were born within a year of each other. They're lucky to have each other because they are completely surrounded and submerged by (count 'em) NINE female cousins. (I know, I've mentioned it a few times before, but I can't help it. That's a lot of girls!) I think it was Tuesday that we had a day-long cousin-fest beginning at the zoo and spending the 2nd half of the day at my house. We had just received a hand-me-down back yard play set from a friend that morning and the kids were so excited they climbed all over it instantly, producing another memorable photo op:
Despite the happy tableau presented here, the day was actually a pretty wild one. There was some sort of nervous, crazy energy floating around my house that day. Pretty much every kid had their moment of totally freaking out. Some kids freaked out all afternoon. The highlight...well, let's call it the lowlight, was an incident involving the two boys, the lack of a shirt, and a three-foot-long rubber snake. 1) Smith wasn't wearing a shirt. 2) Stomper had the snake. 3) Stomper got ticked. 4) The entire family heard a whip crack equaled only by Indiana Jones himself followed by unholy screaming. 5) Smith may or may not have a permanent red mark on his chest, reaching from one shoulder to the other. The welt that instantly appeared on his chest after Stomper expertly snapped him with the snake was really rather alarming, especially to Stomper, who got so upset that he expressed much self-loathing. He tried to tie himself to the tree with the snake, he ran to his room and de-sheeted his bed declaring that he only deserved to sleep on a bare mattress, and as I passed out ice cream cones to ease everyone's tender feelings (and chests) Stomper let me know that he wouldn't allow himself any ice cream. Only broccoli. And potatoes. With butter, he ended up adding.
I was a little afraid that they would never speak again, thus disrupting the next night's sleepover plans. Luckily Smith shook it off and Stomper bucked up. The boys have been having one sleep over per visit for a while now, and we decided that it was our turn to host. We've never had a sleepover here, but it turned out great. One really important thing to remember in hosting sleepovers is to totally exhaust the participants and keep them up way past bed time. That way, when you take them out to the tent in the back yard and read them a story, they roll over and instantly pass out instead of giggling for hours. It's an effective technique and I highly recommend it. It makes me very excited for when Smith's younger sister Laine and Peter's daughter Siena are old enough to join in the fun.