Saturday, July 4, 2009

God Bless America

Here it is, 11:39 PM and my kids just got to bed...does that tell you how our 4th of July went?

Let us begin at 6:00 AM when it all started. The girls woke up as usual, ready to roll full-force. We had a slow morning with no plans to do anything....avoid the crowds and stay out of traffic, that was the only game plan. Then the phone rang....

A friend of the family called to invite us all over for a BBQ in the evening and since we had no other plans, we agreed. So the rush began, now I had to think about food, when to cook since we had swim lessons at noon and how to work in a nap for Belle and the babe, just in case we decided to stay for the fireworks (this was a very slim chance). My dear, sweet mother-in-law offered to go to the grocery for me since she was headed there anyway. So I prepped some food and then got everyone fed and ready for swim lessons.

Final swim lessons for the summer complete, the girls and I stick around the pool for an extra 45 minutes while Al and Connor take in a movie (Night at the Museum I am so jealous) and then home to prepare and cut fruit for my fruit salad. Rush to get it all done and out of the door on time. We made it :)

At the BBQ, Belle got whacked on the cheek with a wooden support from a hammock, instant bruise. Lillee was run over by a scooter which resulted in road rash on her cheek, upper lip and nose. Everyone survived without much complaint. So we decided to try taking in the fireworks.

We arrived at a nice spot, set up the chairs and our kids found some other kids to play with. A large group of really nice kids with those glow-in-the-dark necklace/bracelet things. Before I knew it, all my kids had been given a bracelet to play with. I thought that was super nice, considering my kids had never met any of these other kids and were a few years younger. All the kids were using nice manners, playing gentle...just a really good situation and everyone seemed to be having fun.

The warning firework went off! We gathered our kids to the blanket and as Connor was coming over he started screaming....REALLY screaming, he was in tremendous pain and couldn't talk to us. Fortunately, a girl he was playing with came to tell us that the glowing stuff in the necklace can come out and it can hurt when it does....yup, Connor broke into his necklace and it squirted right into his eye.

There I am, sitting peacefully nursing the baby in public when I realize what has happened. I immediately put the baby down on a chair, latch up my nursing bra as discretely as possible, not really caring because my other child is in trouble. I ask for a bottle of water to flush his eye with and begin pushing him to the ground trying to restrain him so we can flush his eye. My husband restrains his lower half while I restrain and arm and begin to pour the water....Connor is SCREAMING! I mean, really SCREAMING. I'm instructing my husband to check on the baby I left in a chair...yes, a moblie and active baby. Not a smart move on my part but I guess, given the circumstances, my brain was not processing quick enough to figure out it was a bad idea.

We were very fortunate to have two friends with us that happen to be Drs. How often does that happen in an emergency? So Dr. John was helping to hold Connor's eye open while I poured and Al restrained. No good...he kept screaming. Meanwhile I hear people saying, "Should we find a Dr somewhere?" Others were really getting concerned because the screams were so loud and piercing and continuous.
I looked up to do my normal scan....Where are my kids? There's 1.....2....someone grabbed the baby....where is Lillee??? Oh boy, while attending to one child another one decided to wander off and no one saw where she went. My social butterfly had found the parents of the group she was playing with and decided to settle in their compound rather than ours. Fortunately, she came back without complaint....which is shocking for Lillee, she can argue with a wall.

For the next 10 minutes or so we listened to Connor screaming and rubbing his eye and screaming more. Al finally explained to him that we needed to get water into his eye to flush it out and he would have to open his eye while we poured water into it. Connor actually understood this. He was on the ground, on his back and held the lower lid down while Al lifted the upper lid and flushed with water. Viola!!! It worked, crying instantly resolved, Connor could open his eye and people stopped staring at us. He was such a big boy and even in extreme pain was able to step up and realize what role he needed to take in order to fix the problem....that's good stuff!

So we survived, again...WOOOHOOOO

We made it back to our car without incident and then got stuck in took us an hour to get home from a place that would normally take about 7 minutes. Al was in a bad mood from the traffic which put me in a bad mood and Chase was pretty cranky because he just wanted to sleep.

When I got home...I was out of diapers for the baby so at 11:00PM instead of crawling into bed and going to bed after such a long day, I had to take the baby to the store to get diapers. When I got back home at 11:20PM the girls were in bed, playing with glowing necklaces and arguing with one another. And here it is 12:15AM and I'm still awake, writing, hoping to get over my frustration and listening to at least one girl still playing with her necklace and now is complaining that daddy forgot to bring her something to drink over an hour ago!!! Come on, go to sleep already.

And tomorrow is Sunday, which means between 8:00AM and 9:30AM there are 8 people who will want to take baths and showers to get ready for church. And guaranteed, Al will decide in the morning that he needs to cut his hair and shave which makes the bathroom inaccessible to anyone for about an hour.
As much fun as we had, I now wonder how we strayed from the single plan of avoiding crowds and traffic. LOL
Happy 4th of July, I hope you enjoyed the celebrations and remember the reason this day is set aside as a holiday. Thank you Thomas Jefferson for the beautifully written Declaration of Independence, our first step of freedom. And to all the service men and women who continue to take steps daily for our freedom. God has truly blessed America and thank goodness he has blessed my family, too.


Lisa said...

Amanda -

You did a great job last night (even through all the stress)! I hope you were able to have some fun and enjoy a little bit of the fireworks anyway! I'm glad Conner is feeling better. It was fun to see you!

Stephanie Saunders said...

Wow. That's a day. As fun as these holidays are, it makes you glad there aren't more.

Parental Unit said...

I can guarantee you will be telling this story for years to come. Just like when one of my kids stepped in a hornet's nest while running around at Harper's Ferry (while we were trying to have FUN) and the kid chasing her got stung about fifty times by mad hornets. Hopefully some of the other events of the night were somewhat enjoyable! I was very impressed by everyone's cool headedness--especially you and Al.