Thursday, 11 April 2013

Newsie News

I know, I know, I haven't posted in FOREVER.  But I've been busy.  And life is crazy.  We had a round of a stomach bug go through the kids for a week.  Luckily, Leo and I didn't catch it.  Then this past weekend, Nicolas was running a high fever for two days.  Then Isabel and I both had a fever for a day.  I made a couple of birth announcements for my sisters, and I made my first quilt block machine appliqué  I also cut out 392 diamond quilt blocks. And Leo went to New Mexico for work for a couple of days. And I've been raking leaves and acorns like crazy.  Whoever thought it was a good idea to plant 5 oak trees in our yard should be shot.  (Well, that might be a bit harsh, but barely.)  Here, oak trees are never bare, they just shed leaves perpetually from September to May.  And the amount of acorns I've raked up is insane.  I would have a year's worth of food storage.  Not only that, but acorns once sprouted, are hard to pull up, and our flower beds are sprouting 50 or more oak trees every week.  

 Oh, and I canned 16 or so quarts of applesauce.  See my awesome assembly line?  My neighbor and her son thought the food strainer (which I borrowed) was so fascinating that they pressed out a whole batch of apples for me.
It's very good though.

Nicolas is adorable.  Isabel calls him Lando.  Not really from any of us telling her to either.  She decided that we needed a boy named Jack, and it took her a little bit of convincing that we already had a boy named Jack (Sebastian Jack).  So now she calls Sebastian--Jack, and at playgroup today she even had other kids calling him Jack.  And from there, she decided to call Nicolas--Lando.  Crazy girl.  
Nicolas has become extremely clingy since he had that fever.  Not my favorite baby stage.

 He has also learned to crawl, army-style, as you can see by the fact that I couldn't get his picture.  Well, maybe you would have seen that better had you seen all of the 10 other pictures with him blurry from crawling towards me as fast as he could.
 My friend invited us (me and the kids not in school) to go to the zoo with her, so we did.  And then we ate at Ikea afterwards because it was Tuesday and kids eat free.  :)
 The Houston Zoo is really nice.  Nicer than the San Antonio one, I have to say.
 This was taken right before a little boy told Isabel that she's not allowed to climb in the tree.  Sure enough, I missed the big sign at the bottom saying that.  Oops.
My friend Brittney and her son Reed.

And last but certainly not least, in fact, it's probably the most, as in the most frustrating, unsettling part of the last few weeks--was an incident that happened on April 1st.  Not a good April Fool's joke.

So anyone remember this:
And best of all, yesterday, Isabel asked to go get the mail, so I let her, and then she came back in, and I started looking through it. Meanwhile, Isabel and Sebastian wanted to go out and play in the rain puddles, so I told them to put on their rain boots. They did and went out into the front yard. I was almost done looking through the mail and was gathering it up to put some in the trash, when ding-dong. Guess who was at my door? In the five minutes since the kids had put on their on their boots, there was three, yes, THREE police cars parked outside. And I was royally chewed out for not properly supervising my children. According to them, they were both all the way down the street and Sebastian was IN the street. Terrible mother that I am, I was just disgusted at the over reaction. Isabel was NEXT DOOR, getting the neighbor's mail to take to her. She had done that the day before and the neighbor's response was, "Oh, she's just so sweet!" I think she was used to running to the Taylor's mailbox with Josh. Anyway, that's expressly forbidden now. And Sebastian was playing in the puddles in the gutter. He rarely if ever goes out into the street. And I doubted the police officer entirely about him being in the street until I remembered about the water in the gutters. And he was in front of our driveway, or so Isabel told me. Umm, yeah, so the police officer said the kids weren't allowed to come out even onto the front porch without a parent with them. So I want to know, is that a law or something??? What age exactly can they play out front without parents? 5, 8 or is it 16? Just wondering, so I don't get in trouble again. I so, so, so miss Provo. And yeah, I don't let those two play outside in the front without supervision, and I was heading that way, but it literally was five minutes. I'm sure I have a lovely CPS file on me now. Ruff. Leo thinks a neighbor called, because he doesn't think 3 police cars would have arrived that fast otherwise. Joy.

Fast forward to a week ago Monday, I had just come home with Elena from school, and while I went in the back door, she went to get the mail.  I left the door open for her and Sebastian went out on his little bike to go with her.  She came in and I was helping her with her backpack and when Sebastian didn't immediately follow, I went to the back door to call him in.  Literally, about a minute had passed from when Elena came in.  Since he wasn't towards the garage on the driveway, I then went to the front door to tell him to come in. He was on our sidewalk directly in front of our house. In that time, a cop car stopped in the middle of the road and the police officer started yelling at me.  She hadn't even had time to pull over and get out.  It was one of the same cops from last year.  Then she wrote me up again and told me that next time CPS would take my kids away.  Seriously!??!?!?  There's over 5,000 homeless kids in Houston, and they're concerned with my son riding his bike in our yard for a few seconds unsupervised, while I was on my way to go get him?  

Anyway, I was fairly upset by it, mostly by the thought of CPS taking my kids away, because frankly, with toddlers, you can't guarantee that they won't somehow escape the house while I'm in the shower or changing another kid's diaper and be out in the front yard again when a cop happens to drive by.  I mean, I've been careful since the first incident not to let my kids out in the front without me or Leo or Ana or the older neighbor kids, but there's plenty of preschoolers I've known who are escape artists and will just take off.  I cried for three hours that night, and told Leo we were moving immediately, and the next day I was literally so upset that I didn't even get up till past noon, I just felt miserable. 

Then I started looking for houses outside of Houston with a bit of land (so my kids can get bit by rattlesnakes, copperheads, water moccasins, and alligators but avoid unwanted neighbors and cops and CPS) but around here there's bunches of million dollar mansions with land and double wide trailers with land.  I can't afford the one, and I'm not interested in the other.  So then we were seriously looking at this house (still in a subdivision but with a massive yard) which if it weren't for the hour and a half commute, I probably would have convinced Leo to buy by now.  And now, a week and a half later I'm wondering if I'm just overreacting.  But we're totally muddled on where we want to buy a house now.  I think I'm going to go talk to a lawyer and find out really if the cop could take the kids away next time and if there's a way to get those warnings dropped from my record, etc. before we make any decisions on whether to move out to the nearby swampland/coastal prairies or stay where we are, which was our plan before this happened.  

Sorry, for the long rambling, but as this is typically my only journal of sorts, I wanted to write it down.

Goodnight, it's late, and I need sleep.  First though, on a brighter note, the dress I'm sewing for Ana is coming along beautifully. 


Anonymous said...

Kami sue...I miss Provo for a lot of reasons as well. I guess if we move to the swamplands I will have to buy the Crocodile Dundee training video I saw on ebay. That should get me started on basic survival skills in the swamplands. I love you. I am sure soon we will receive answers, guidance, inspiration or something that will help us make a decisions.

Lynn said...

Oh my gosh!!!!

Your neighbors --- seriously -- someone needs to get a life!!!

I am SO sorry. I can't even imagine the stress. I can't even imagine not liking someone's children to go as far as they have. Whoever "they" are. It must be stressful on your kids not be able to run and play freely.

I truly hope that you are able to talk to a lawyer. I seriously can't believe that you don't have some recourse here. I will be praying.

jt said...

You have been sooooo busy and productive! Wow. Good work. Thanks for calling the other day!

Kayli said...

I love that first picture of Nicolas. Adorable!