It’s been a weird month. Merry Christmas!!

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Well, we survived Christmas. Quite well actually. The holidays are a time of great anticipation and having birthday’s just before and just after make this an extra ‘fun’ time of year. That’s right. One more event to go before we’re able to recover the finances and move on with our lives.

It’s been a weird few months that all started with Jonah’s blackbelt test. Mid November we all prepared to celebrate his accomplishment. My mom flew down, I made a cake, people were coming over for the after party. And then the unthinkable happened. He started throwing up the night before his test. Poor kid. Poor Roland. I’m not sure who was more devastated. The kid tried to test. He got up at 5:30 and drug himself to the park, but when he started running laps he nearly passed out. It only took a day of rest and he was back to normal. It was just terrible timing. We were able to set a new time for him to test, but it was a couple of weeks later.

In the mean time we took our annual trip up to my mom’s for Thanksgiving just under a week of her being at our house. The trip was fairly smooth except that I locked the keys in the van and that cost us $175 and 3 hours of waiting for 5 seconds of work. You gotta love the city right? Then I started feeling a sore throat and by the time we got to my mom’s house it had morphed into full blown flu like symptoms that kept me on the couch for 3 days. Thanksgiving was great! Thanksgiving night was not. My poor mom contracted the stomach flu and she was out for the rest of our vacation. Boo!

We did manage to all make it to The Great Wolf Lodge that weekend to celebrate my sister’s 40th birthday, but the ropes course was closed (so sad) and that night Mickey started vomiting. The next morning it was my turn. We told the cleaning crew to exercise extreme caution when cleaning that room after our departure. It was miserable and we drove home with my trash can in my lap and stopping at every rest stop from Centralia to Central Point. I do not recommend that to anyone. It was misery. We made a 7 hour trip last 13 hours. Better late than never I guess.

When we got home I realized that I hadn’t made additional preparations to have the cat boxes cleaned while we were gone. 8 days, 5 cats, 2 boxes. The math doesn’t add up and if you’re a cat you deal with things in a cat like way. There’s nothing like cleaning out over over over filled cat boxes when you’re already not feeling well. But it had to be done and it was horrendous. I have been finding evidence of angry cats doing angry cat things while we were away for weeks after. Some still hold grudges and are making us pay for our mistakes to this day.

Roland was paranoid of getting sick, but we were pretty sure that since Jonah had already had the stomach flu he’d be fine. Nope. He got whatever we had brought home and only 2 days to his test! He missed a lot of practice, but did manage to recover and tested and it was quite amazing to see all that he has learned. He broke boards, demonstrated self defense, showed off his weapons and forms. I cannot believe how far he’s come and how he can use his body to do such amazing things!

Mickey’s birthday party was the following weekend. A surprise horse back riding adventure! And yes, she managed to pick up a nasty little cold. The illnesses can stop now. Any time!! It wasn’t just us that got sick either. When we got home I discovered Big Tasty (our big white hen) had a bumblefoot infection in both feet! Holy hell what’s going on with our family! And yes, I did take the chicken to the vet. A chicken. To the vet. And after almost a month long course of antibiotics she seems to be doing well.

I’ve learned a few things from these adventures. Don’t lock your keys in the van in Portland. It’s not fun and is really expensive. Don’t go to any stores 3 days before any major holiday or major event such as a blackbelt test. Someone will get the stomach flu. Even if you don’t touch anything the stomach flu virus will jump off of any surface straight into your body and you will get sick. This is a known fact that doctors won’t tell you about because it’s a controversial subject. Just avoid all stores. You can live without whatever thingie ma bob, but you can’t get that holiday time back. Make arrangements for cat box cleaning when away. If not, the results are far from comical. Giving a chicken a pill is really easy and fun too! It’s just a beak and an endless gullet that sucks up food. Kids scream and punch you, cat’s lacerate your jugular, but chickens have no defense to their beak being propped open and having a pill dropped in. They even thank you afterward because they think you gave them a treat. If it went down the hatch it was a delightful treat right? Thank you for your thoughtfulness.

So now here we are the day after Christmas having a quiet healthy day. The meltdowns were minimal and I made candy because I felt the need to make something that wasn’t cake for once. My kid has a temper so I’ve been putting together his new Legos. It’s quite a nice change of pace compared to running around doing errands and preparing for a holiday. New Year’s should be fun. It’s usually a bit on the dreary day for me, but we have plans! Parents with plans. Because we’re cool like that.


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