Friday, July 29, 2016

7 Quick Takes about Antique Selfies, How to Impress People at a Barbecue, and A Few Serious Thoughts for a Change

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


A 19th-century living history museum near us was having a promotional free day this week, and of course I jumped all over that since normally it's $100 to bring my whole family to anything with a whiff of culture to it.

The museum was great, and they had special booths set up for the promo including the "Historic Selfie Station" which I thoroughly got a kick out of.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
With her nose stuck in a book. As usual.

So did my kids.


As I herded all of my children plus some of my friends' children down the stairs at the museum, a man gaped after us and asked, "Are they all yours?"

"No, just six of them," I said, not realizing until after I walked away that he probably thought I was joking.

A few days later at the pool, I had another similar moment. I was holding the baby and watching my toddler and preschooler splashing around in the shallow end when a lady approached me and said, "I'm trying to convince my husband about a third baby. I said, 'See? Three kids can work out just fine!'"

I laughed and said, "Well, we actually have 6. The older three are taking swimming lessons on the other side of the pool."

Judging by the look on her face as she backed away slowly, I'm guessing I didn't help her make the case to her husband that people with more than two children aren't completely insane.

Sorry, lady. It is what it is.


We got invited to a BBQ at Phillip's new boss's house, and since he's only had this job for a month we really wanted to make a good impression.

And an impression, we did make.

It all started to go south when the kids got their food and the preschooler spilled her drink. I jumped up to help her and while I was mopping up juice with paper towels, I realized that my lap was wet. Wet in the shape of a tiny butt.

Yes, the 2-year-old's diaper had leaked on me as he was sitting in my lap eating his food, which meant that I was totally killing this making a good impression thing. I mean, who can forget the lady who spends the entire night chatting up a room full of professionals with PEE ON HER PANTS?

But it gets better. We didn't have an extra set of clothes for the 2-year-old, so Phillip's boss's wife went upstairs rooting around for something he could wear. Since they only have two daughters ages 9 and 13, he ended up in a yellow and pink Winnie the Pooh T-shirt that fit him like a dress.

Not more than a few minutes later, he pooped in the very last diaper he had. Hoping against hope that maybe there was a random spare diaper in the car that I'd forgotten about, I sent Phillip out to check (my exact words were "Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope.")

I was almost sure we were going to have to give up and go home right then and there, but I guess the moral of this story is never to clean your car too regularly, because there was one stray size 4 diaper in there and the day was saved.

After that, we actually had a nice rest of our evening. And we definitely made an impression.


The toddler had a busy week in addition to the BBQ, if you also factor in his Sunday morning visit to the emergency room. After I'd told him and his sister three times to stop jumping on the couch, he bounced off into the coffee table and cut his head.

Told. You. So.

It wasn't terrible as far as head wounds go, but it looked bad enough that I took him to the E.R. to see if he needed stitches.

Before leaving, Phillip tied a gauze pad to his head with a tea towel, and with the long ends of the towel hanging down I got multiple comments from the E.R. staff about how he looked like Rambo.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

They ended up gluing the wound shut, which was way less traumatic for him than stitches with a needle. Of course now there's a bloody gluey mess in his hair that won't come out for a week or so, but that's what we call a conversation piece, right?


Unfortunately this was a sweltering week and we couldn't go to the beach, (doctor's orders after the head wound incident) so we had to invent our own boring fun at home.

If you were here, you could have:

Played in a giant box!

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
Thanks, for a fun afternoon and a few inexpensive cases of diapers.

Taken turns poking holes in a Kleenex with pencils!

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
Used in a game, sort of a DIY Don't Break the Ice.

Pretended to enjoy forced crafting time with your mother!

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
Inspired by my friend Stella who blogs at Purfylle, I declared Thursday "UFO Day." UFO stands for 'Unfinished Object.' We are none of us crafters and we all hated every minute of it.

You could have also faced your mortality along with me when we were cleaning pennies with vinegar and I couldn't read the year on one, leading to a child-led discussion about how I'm practically blind and deaf with one foot in the grave already.


Usually we plan a fake educational trip around the world during the summer and everything else fits in around that, but for the first time in 5 years we're taking a break.

I just didn't think I had it in me to add one more thing this summer, and we felt like we needed to concentrate on the basics instead: nightly family scriptures and prayer, weekly Family Home Evening (like a Monday night devotional,) and setting aside 15 minutes every morning for everyone to have personal scripture reading and prayer.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
I have this hanging above my kitchen sink.

We're also teaching life skills. The older kids are all learning to type by doing a lesson a day on It's ridiculous how they've all gotten into writing stories on Google Drive but since they're hunting and pecking with one finger they'll be on there for an hour and have three sentences finished by the end.

You bet they complain about it, but they'll thank me. One day.


On a more serious note, I was published this week at the Huffington Post. Take a minute to click over and read Joining the Miscarriage Club.

If you know someone who recently lost a pregnancy, please share this and let her know she's not alone. It would mean a lot to me!

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Unremarkable Files


Alicia @ Sweeping Up Joy said...

So much life in these quick takes! I don't think I ever really lived until I was in a public restroom drying little kid undies under the hand dryer. We can find solidarity in the humility. :)

I popped over and read your post on miscarriage as well. So much truth. Thank you for sharing.

Rosie said...

A woman at the pool was amazed that I'm pregnant with my 6th - she said I must have A LOT of patience! I told her I probably used to have more... I don't think that was the right response :P But most of the "WOW THAT'S A LOT OF KIDS" comments are impossible to respond to in any meaningful way, especially since I was working on getting 3yo twins to use the toilet without dropping their swimsuit bottoms on the floor...

Jenny said...

That feeling when you find the spare diaper in the car!!! Also the feeling when you don't, much worse.

I found a cool educational subscription box that teaches about the world called little passports. Every time I pull it out I think of you and your blog and how I feel like I'm being a great mom. But now the whole scripture study and life skills thing sounds even better.

AnneMarie said...

Congrats on being published on Huff Post. That is a beautiful article, and I'm sure it will touch a lot of people.

I love living history museums! What a blessing that they had a free day-I love how anytime attractions have "free days," I always see ALL the huge families show up. It's awesome :) Haha! Oh my, I'm sure y'all made a great, lasting impression at that BBQ. I'm sure you made them extra-grateful that their kids are older and far beyond the toddler years :P

Christine said...

No surprise that you were featured of're so awesome!

Unknown said...

lol! That's too funny, the wet butt mark. Also, we've glued a lot of wounds too. It's so much less traumatic than holding them down for stiches.

Michelle said...

Your article was beautiful. I'm so sorry for your losses.

Unknown said...

But did you get your stepping stores done? Congrats on Huff post. That was a good expression that many will relate to.

Queen Mom Jen said...

Congrats on the Huffington Post! You guys are fun. I think we missed an afternoon fun session by not utilizing a Kleenex and a pencil that way.

AiringMyLaundry said...

Congrats on the article on Huff Post! I had a miscarriage a few years back.

That museum sounds awesome. I love history.

PurpleSlob said...

You're the best mom ever!! I wish MY mom had forced me to do crafts!! ;)
Your life is definitely an adventure!
I agree with your sink sign. Scriptures, prayer and family are the most important!!
And yes, they will thank u later for the typing!!
Going over to Huff now. Congrats on being published!

Jenny Evans said...

It's hard to form a halfway-intelligent response when they catch you off guard, like trying to keep your kids from touching/licking everything in the produce aisle. Your mind is a little occupied at the moment. But that's probably how I'd respond, too.

Jenny Evans said...

I've read your blog and you ARE a great mom! In an ideal world I'd be able to do both, but I decided to admit to myself that I can't do both this summer. (That hardly ever happens, I am very proud of myself for not trying and driving myself crazy!)

Jenny Evans said...

I've done it at home to myself before and it didn't even leave a scar, but I thought I should leave my children to a trained professional! I can't imagine how he would've freaked out if they'd done stitches.

Jenny Evans said...

Thanks. Writing it was really helpful for me personally in processing it, so hopefully it's helpful to someone else who reads it.

Jenny Evans said...

I hate those stepping stones and never want to see them again. I'm still not finished, but close. They're probably not going to last one season before the tiles start falling off, which is going to make me want to scream.

Jenny Evans said...

That's right, you're back in school now! Oh well, I guess there's always spring break...

Jenny Evans said...

Sorry to hear about your miscarriage.

Marina @ Parental Journey said...

Selfies at the museum are to die for :)) Sounds like so much fun!

Katy said...

And we definitely made an impression - ha ha! I'm glad you had that extra size 4 in your minivan to save the day. :)

Congrats on Huff Po, although the topic doesn't sound like I should be congratulating you so I'll awkwardly sign off now.

The Lady Okie said...

Heading over to read your post now. Not a great topic, but congrats on getting published. That is funny what you said to the guy about "only 6 are mine." I'm sure he did think you were joking!

Jenny Evans said...

It was a little small, but it worked better than his baby brother's size ones and they were our only other option!