|This picture of Lewis and his corn on the cob technique is kind of too awesome|
not to share - despite it's super poor quality.
Sam has had a rough school year so far. He's excelling socially, and finds it a revelation. The other day he said to me, "I always knew I liked people a lot, but now I know people like me a lot, too!" Oh, sweet boy. He works really hard to do his best academically, and has a rough teacher. We're working on switching him out of that classroom (hopefully tomorrow). He's playing soccer (and I'm his coach!!) and has really taken off in his abilities and confidence on the field. I can't tell you how much I love raising these athletically awesome kids! He has 2 close friends, S. and N., and the three of them spend all their spare time together, and are loving their growing freedoms. I hope they get to be friends for life. They are a great, solid trio.
Ben is doing well. He adores his teacher (as do I) and is taking off in his abilities. He's struggled in some ways academically, but everything seems to suddenly be gelling. I love watching that happen! More importantly, he's lit up about it all. He loves reading, he loves writing, he loves math, he loves that he gets to go be a Kindergarten helper for a short time every day. His imagination still reigns supreme. It has no bounds. He is just pure delight, and I wish every parent had a Ben. He's also an occasional handful, you no doubt know. He's been feeling small recently, and is going through a bit of a fragile phase. He doesn't have friends at school right now, which is very strange for him, since he is usually confident and gregarious. I know he'll work through it, but it's hard to see him feel lonely. He's playing soccer, too, and is loving it. He has the most fun coach, a local teen who just adores these kids.
James is super, but I'm sure you know that. He is smart and good and responsible and has just enough rebelliousness and all to keep us on our toes. He's still an extreme night owl, and has a really hard time winding down every night despite our early start in the AM. Like I always say, he's the most responsible Richins in our home, and that's only a slight exaggeration. Every day he packs his backpack for school, plants himself at the table, and reminds me he needs to homeschool. We just do a few fun things, and he loves it. He brings that same backpack to church so he can be a missionary. It's hilarious. He has a fan club of older girls and women who swoon when he walks by and giggle at every adorable thing he says. He kind of eats it up.
Lewis. Oh, Lewis. Right now he's sitting on the table throwing cups off of it. So, I said, "Heeey." He looked over at me, covered his face, and started fake crying. It's so pathetic. What a character! And sometimes, what a grump! And everything he does, silly or sweet or funny, is so cooed over and awed at. Poor little baby. He's starting to talk more. He says, "I waaaan it!" more than anything. Also, MaMa, DaDa, waah (with a W at his lips)for water, Nana for banana, Uh-uh for no, and Uh-huh! for yes, and more. He often talks in a loud lion growl, and makes lots of funny noises. Also, he's a shy guy! He doesn't like people he doesn't know looking at him first. But, if he sees them first, and they are far enough away, he'll wave and yell 'Hewo!" I'm pleased to say he loves his fuzzy blanket and Mama cuddles (and nurses) more than anything. He's also more of a daddy's boy than any of our kids. He loves high fives, and knuckles, too.
Me? I'm crazy busy, and for someone who loves a quiet and slow life, it's kind of a big change. I'm hoping things will slow down here in the next month, but who am I kidding? That probably won't really happen for another 2 decades! Oh well! Life is hard. I'm not going to lie. But I really wouldn't have it any other way. I am a better person for sharing my life, the highs and the lows, so completely and unreservedly, day in and day out, with my wonderful family.
I love it, pure and simple.