I woke up at the crack of dawn. Nina had slept great but I had slept restlessly. I couldn't get rid of the loom. It was everywhere!
I went for a long, rigorous run. Exercise always seems to relieve my stress.
After breakfast, I took the boys to the Natural History Museum. The only thing Silas had requested to do on this trip was go back to the Natural History Museum. Nina was extremely fatigued! She asked to stay home and play Wii with Dada. Her ataxia was getting worse and so was the drooling. While she played Mario Kart to her heart's delight, the boys and I explored the wonders that make up our earth.
Teddy and Silas both love science. It fits who they are. They are both such observant and interactive kids with their environments. The evidence is on their clothing...constantly covered in grass stains and mud :) I jest but I wouldn't have it any other way. Teddy may be 8, but I still have to empty out the pockets on his clothing before putting it the washer. I find just as many pebbles, insects, sticks, and leaves in his pockets at age 8 as I did when he was age 4 :) I just hope that they allow their love for science to inspire them to greatness in adulthood! God has given these kids talents and I am determined to help them use them.
The tour of the Natural History Museum was a huge hit! The boys especially loved the exhibit on crystals and ended up each picking out a small crystal to purchase in the gift shop. After the museum tour, we returned to the Pier so that the the boys could purchase a few treats with their allowance money. I love watching Teddy and Silas. It is the same type of relationship that Adelae and Nina have; one of true and sincere admiration on Teddy's part and one of genuine love and mentorship from Silas' side. Silas is a big lug of a kid but he has a heart of gold and he has always taken Teddy under his wing, nurturing and challenging Teddy to become a better (not as quick to freak!) kid. Teddy needs these kinds of peers in his life!
By the time we returned home, there were only a couple of hours left before the Becchios and Ed Gover would arrive for our New Years Bash. For the last number of years this has been our tradition. The Becchios and Ed come over, we cook a smorgie of food, nibble all night long, the kids play, and we top it all off with making smores over the fire pit.
Before long, everyone arrived. Todd had made killer hot wings and a 7-layer dip so we all dug in. The kids hunkered down in Teddy's dorm to play XBox. The ribs were on the BBQ, carefully being babysat by John. About an hour into the festivities, Nina reminded us that we need to build the fire for the smores. Consequently, she and John began to strategically pile small pieces of wood into the fire pit, aiming for the best possible setting to build a fire. Then....John lit the fire. Well...at least he tired to do so! Each match he used would light a tiny fire that would dissipate within seconds. Nina just sat sweetly, encouraging him like a tiny cheerleader "It's gonna work now." Within 10 minutes John and practically blown through all of our matches.
Since I had no confidence in John's ability to build the fire (and we were out of matches!) I told him I was going to CVS to buy matches and a duraflame log. As I climbed into the car, John bellowed "I've got it!" Stubborn man!
Unfortunately CVS was out of matches but they did have an automatic lighter and a case of duraflame logs. I got in line; the place was crowded. When it was my turn to pay, the chubby, balding cashier asked to see my I.D. I looked at him blankly and asked what in the world for and he picked up the lighter, stating that they were now required to ID anyone who looked near 18 buying an automatic lighter. I literally cackled! It was such a loud cackle that it echoed throughout the entire store. I looked at him facetiously and said, "Do you honestly think I look like I could be any where near 18?" He shrugged his shoulders and said that he thought so! HA!!! I quipped that he only wanted to see how old I really was and he slightly blushed! I gave him my damn driver's license. He starred at it and then said, "Wow...you look really good!" I kid you you not! The ding dong actually said that! I cackled again and said, "Wow... you look really good for being so old? Gee thanks!" The poor guy totally got flustered and the gaggle of college boys behind me buying booze laughed at my harassing the dumb cashier! He deserved it!
When I returned home, to my dismay, I found the fire going....relatively going that is! John was beaming, like a little boy who had proved mommy wrong! John is just as competitive as I am so I'm sure while I was gone he frenetically worked on building that fire! Aghhh!!! I went inside and told everyone my CVS story and sent out texts to friends and family! I knew my latest ridiculous nonsense would bring some fun New Year's Eve cheer to all I loved so dearly! Per usual...I got a barrage of outlandish comments...my favorite being my brother stating that It's the Goth hair! What a punk!!
As I predicted, John totally rubbed it in that he and Nina had gotten the fire going. AghhhMuahhaha!!! As John went inside, I casually dumped the remainder of my peppermint mocha onto the fire....Pufff...the fire was practically gone!!! A few minutes later, I saw Todd secretly summon John and whisper something into his ear. John raced to the fire pit and let out a loud, "Oh man!! I thought I had it going! How is this possible. Damn it!" Ha ha ha!! I won!!!
John laughed and complained for a few more seconds before coming to me and asking for the duraflame log. He looked like a little puppy, defeated, with his tail between his legs! I tried not to laugh but it was too hard!!! I laughed and laughed and laughed! John thought I was laughing at his plight and laughed along with me! He just couldn't believe that it had blown out! He carried on and on about how carefully he had monitored the fire's progress and had been sure it was a done deal! His constant lamentation made me laugh so hard that within minutes I was crying from laughter! That's when he figured it out! He turned to me and asked if I had done something, "Did you put my fire out?". I didn't need to confess...he knew! Instantly he started laughed hysterically. Todd, Susan and Ed inquired about the lunacy outdoors and John told them about my evil behavior. Susan was very proud of me!! John just stood in the middle of the kitchen, shaking his head in total disbelief! I gave him a hug and a duraflame log!
After my cruel practical joke, the remainder of the evening was mild. We ate. The kids watched a movie (Aliens in the Attic....one of our favorites!) and played games. Nina gave David and Braden their pillow pets and they were delighted. After dinner, Nina eventually fell asleep for about an hour and a half. I love watching her sleep. She is just the sweetest thing!