Apparently people ask my mother on a daily basis "How's it going with the kids?" because she makes sure to mention that she tells people everyday that things are going "fine" ... which is mom-speak for the house is still standing and noone has died yet.
She is right though, things are going fine. I approached this situation with trepidation, of course, but so far things have been just fine.
Despite the fact that in the first three days Benny broke a plate, Dylan broke a lamp and I broke a glass, things have been fine. Thank goodness noone has broken a mirror yet. Knock wood.
Mom is exceedingly happy to have been able to give up her terrible Cup-O-Soup dinner habit. I am very happy to cook every night and have someone ELSE wash the dishes. Fantastic!
The kids really love venturing out into the backyard pretty much whenever they feel the need. The yard is fully fenced and gated and totally secure unlike at the Arizona house where the yard was completely open, exceedingly large and totally open to strangers, bears, turkeys, deer, etc.
Elizabeth also just adores her new school. All the kids are super friendly, she's constantly greeting kids on the way into school and waving goodbye to new friends on the way out. It's very sweet. Her school is much closer to home now, we can walk there if we are so inclined and we have been a few times. She's also getting almost twice as many classroom hours here than she was back in Arizona, and she loves that too. Crazy kid. Loves learning. I'm truly blessed.
I am loving the shopping variety. I can actually check all the grocery mailers and find the best deals and save a ton of money on food that way, instead of getting packaged stuff at Walmart and fresh stuff at Safeway, end of story. Yes, I realize that my joy at a wider selection of grocery stores makes me A) old and B) lame and C) busted.
I'm fine with that. I get to shop at Trader Joe's, so it's all good.
We are hopeful that Bob will be able to get a job soon. There are a few opportunities we know about and he's applied for a few things and gotten in touch with the local union so...you know, we're staying positive.
All in all the arrangement is working out pretty well for us. The boys have their own room, which Benny sleeps in all night and Dylan really tries to sleep in all night. Elizabeth bunks with my mom and Bob and I have our own room. Downstairs the kids have a playroom with their own TV (for the horrible cartoons) and computers for their PBS Kids and Nick Jr. games. So they're totally happy.
I think the family member with the most joy in his heart is Sonny. He gets to lay outside in the sunshine all day, run around and play with the kids in the yard and not have to be on the tie-out at ALL anymore. He is in dog heaven.
Thanksgiving is coming up and I'm so happy that we'll all be together here. It will be different for me, I'm used to running the party back home, but I'm sure I'll get to do a lot of the cooking and frankly I use all my mom's recipes anyway so it will go over just fine.
I'm sure I just jinxed our harmony with this positive and upbeat post, but hey, I know you all wanted to know if we had killed each other yet...truth is, we haven't even come close.
And that's a good thing.