Going Purple!

 Our Little Pink Girl has decided to make some changes! She got to pick something new out that came in this week. Can you guess what it is??

Oh that’s right! Miss E is stylin’ with some amazing new PURPLE glasses! Her prescription changed slightly and her bifocal needed to be raised up quite a bit, as it was rather useless in her last pair. We had to go to a bigger size so she would have room to see, as well as use her bifocal so she has room to grow:) She loves her new glasses!! She has insisted on wearing purple pretty much every day since so she can coordinate:)

This morning Eliana marched into her Sunday school class and started informing all her teachers that she got some new purple glasses! We thought it might be hard to adjust to seeing her in a new color but it is a soft purple and it brightens up her face. It’s very pretty but the main thing is, she’s happy and she can SEE!

We did not check our forecast this morning before we headed out to church so the terrible storm that passed through totally caught us by surprise! It was a warm 62 degrees and wet outside but by the time we came out of church, it was really dark in the building. My first clue that it was more than raining outside was when I looked towards the front doors, only to see a big group of people stumble backwards with hair flying every which way!

It seriously looked like their was a hurricane outside. It was crazy! There was an indoor church picnic for families that we were going to but unfortunately, we left our lunch in the car! Ben had to brave the torrential rains and even hail to bring our van closer and our lunch in. He was soaked when he finally made it back inside~poor guy!

We really enjoyed the picnic, all safe and warm inside the church. Each family brought a blanket, a picnic lunch for themselves and a dessert to share with everyone. After everyone ate, we all gathered in a big circle and said a prayer, with anyone who wanted saying outloud what they were thankful for and we sang “Give Thanks.” A fun way to end the weekend!

On the way home we spotted a ton of branches littering the roads and yards and some really bad flooding on some streets. We were a little nervous about what we would find in our basement but thankfully, it wasn’t too bad. We threw down several towels and mopped it up and had the boys do a quick clean up while we were at it. They make a huge mess with all of their “projects” and crafts they work on downstairs. There were a ton of sopping wet papers all over the floor!

This week I will have a fun new Christmas toy to share that hopefully will improve my blog! Can you guess what it is??

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Last Full Day!

 Every Wednesday this entire year (sick days, not withstanding) I have been super busy. As in, zero time downtime period. Between MOPS or bible study (opposite weeks) in the mornings and volunteering at Z’s school in the afternoons plus early release day, it’s been crazy!

Until today. Last week, I did my last day of volunteering in the library and the teacher was so sweet and surprised me with a gift card for a foot massage! This week? E and I did absolutely nothing, except Skype with my sis and niece.

I felt really lazy. I was lazy. And only slightly ashamed:) I figured I maybe possibly could okay one completely lazy day before school gets out and I’m back to full-time duties, right?

This was Eliana’s look for the morning. She loves to dress herself, sometimes multiple times a day! She was really into wearing the boys’ things today like this ensemble and their baseball hats, too. (which she tried to claim as “hers” when they got home. Yeah, that flew with them!

Last full day of Kindergarten! Zakkai got an award for being a good role model this year! Isn’t he getting so big?? I will have to do some Zakkai journal quoting here soon. He brought home some good ones today:)

Last full day of second grade! He is planning on referring to himself as a third grader as of 9:20 tomorrow morning when school gets out. Ah! Not ready for that. I will continue to think of him as a second grader until the day before school starts. What a handsome kid! His book bag weighed about 15 pounds this afternoon, filled with leftover school supplies. No one has been allowed to peek inside it yet…

Missy Moo wanted to jump in on the picture taking with Baby Anna! I caught her in mid-giggle:) Such a happy girl!

A couple weeks ago, Zakkai and a neighbor friend decided it would be a great idea to decorate the front of the house with chalk. And so, today was installment #2 of “clean off the bricks!” Punishment fits the crime, I would say! He won’t be coloring on bricks anytime soon, I guarantee!!

Ben started his part-time job yesterday so the kiddos haven’t seen him in 2 days! The week was off because of Memorial day so he had to work two 11-12 hour days in a row but normally, hopefully, he won’t be working two in a row because no one gets to see him! He leaves by 6:30 and doesn’t get home til after 8:30pm.

Eliana hasn’t seen him since Monday and cried a lot for him yesterday. “I want to see my dada!!” Very sad:( We are very thankful for this work though and are praying for something else to come our way.

There was a terrible thunderstorm last night and Ben had to run through it from the train station home last night. He was absolutely dripping wet. His clothes still haven’t fully dried yet! The lightening and thunder scared Eliana and she kept crying for me and saying, “Mama, the lightening is in my woom! (room)” She talked about it a lot today and was very thankful that it was all gone!

And we had to clean up yet more water in the basement. Thankfully, not completely filled like the craziness last month but the usual water seepage that comes after a heavy rain. It is pretty annoying! A few days ago, someone left on the outside water spigot that is just outside our home, overnight and we woke up to half the basement covered in water. Ugh! So this is twice in 5 days that I’ve had to dirty several towels and sop up nasty brown dirt water.

I’m beginning to think I’d like to have a house without a basement someday! Actually, I think I’d just be happy to have a home of my own, basement or no basement. Maybe someday.

Zakkai might have something fun to show you tomorrow!!

Flood in Chitown!

 We have had SO much rain here lately! It usually starts to rain either when I’m dropping the boys off at school or right at 3pm when I’m picking them up. And 9/10 times I forget the umbrella. sigh.

Yesterday, there was a horrible hail storm in the morning. As in, the ground was completely covered in hail in about a minute and it was loud and crazy! Then it rain off and on alllll day, which escalated into a downpour by bedtime.

And it didn’t stop for almost 13 hours!! And I mean downpour. For 13 hours straight. We were woken up at 4am by a flood alert on our phones (anyone else get the new amber/weather alerts on their cells now?). We decided to go down and check our basement because we’ve had a tiny bit of flooding a couple times before. We came down armed with a stack of towels only to find it perfectly dry! We left the towels on the stairs just in case. You could hear the sump pump working hard all night long.

When we woke up and started getting everyone ready for school, we found that our backyard was a lake! There was SO much water and it was still pouring rain! Ben went down to check the basement and found that the usual water had come in through the front basement wall and was making it’s way towards the stairs. We threw down towels all over and tried to soak up the mess. We peeked out into the common basement area (a long hallway that runs the length of all 4 townhouses and where our storage closets and laundry area is.) to see if anything was wet and found the ceiling outside our basement dripping and a little water running along the walls and into the drains. We called the landlords to give them a heads up and then went on feeding everyone.

Then Ben went to take the boys to school (a lot of schools were closed but not ours!) and this is what our street looked like! As my sister and a friend said, “What street?!” Ben was gone a lot longer than usual and when he came back he said that several side streets around the school were blocked off due to flooding and it had taken so long to get to school. Crazy!

I was skyping with my Sis in the mid-morning when Ben suddenly came up and told me he needed my help with the water. I came down to find that a gush of water had come into our basement under the basement door (that leads to the common basement area) and when I opened the door, not only did water come pouring in but I found one of our landlords sloshing through several inches of water. It was an absolute mess!!

I snapped a quick picture but it was still gushing in and rose a lot higher before it was all over. We grabbed every towel possible in the house and tried blocking up the door (it has a big gap underneath it) and the walls where it was coming in.

It was completely unstoppable. We spent so long wringing out towels in a bucket and dumping buckets of water out but it was seriously like bashing your head against the wall for the fun of it. Totally worthless!

The water continued to creep farther and farther into the basement until finally it covered every inch of it.

We stacked anything on the ground that was destroyable on the stairs.

The water was so gross and brown! Thankfully, it wasn’t sewer water, just ground water but still! Gross.

It was between 2-3 inches deep, especially in the middle.

We had a huge stack of towels stuffed under the door but the water just came through the walls and there was nothing we could do. When we removed the towels so B could get out to see if anything was draining in the outer basement, water came pouring into our basement. We were a little overwhelmed because our landlords didn’t do anything for a long time! They had turned off the sump pump because it couldn’t keep up with the amount of water. We had no idea how we were going to clean this up!

Thankfully, not too much was destroyed. Some really minor stuff. The worst was a big library book of Ben’s from school that will cost at least $100 to replace. We’re a little sick about that but it could’ve been SO much worse…like the people whose cars fell in the sinkhole in SE Chicago! We feel so bad for the people who lost so much today and face a far, far bigger clean-up than we do.

In the mid-afternoon, the landlord’s son came over and started pumping everything out into the parking lot. He assured us that it would come out of our basement, too and they would help get it cleaned up.

It took a LONG time to pump it all out. Ben pushed a lot of the water out as it pump out with a big brush (squidjee?) and the landlords handed out huge fans and de-humidifiers.

They only just left a bit ago after working for 5-6 hours! All the boxes in our storage closet were destroyed but I haven’t the heart or energy to really investigate that closer. Maybe tomorrow…..

The storage doors are all propped open, our furnace has been relit and hopefully will keep working, the humidifier is going strong and we are left with the large task of mopping, cleaning and spraying down everything. Who knows what was in that water!!! They will be coming back to access the damage to the ceiling, woodwork and stairs carpeting.

Ours was the only one of all 3 of the buildings (one in front and one in back of us) to get completely flooded. Our neighbor on the very end was not called and warned about the flooding and came to our door at 5:30pm in tears because she had come home to find her basement filled, her piles of laundry completely soaked and some kitchen appliance she had stored, ruined. We felt so bad for her!

In a very baby way, it made me think of people who go through real actual floods and how that must feel. I can’t even imagine! We are so thankful it wasn’t worse, that we really have nothing to complain about like the people whose houses and cars are half under water. We got around 7 inches of rain in less than a day!!

Now, I’d better get a good night’s sleep so I can have the energy to do some serious cleaning tomorrow!