kitted-up Madsen, cold weather, lice redux, sibling balance

It is quite cold for the west coast, literally freezing this morning. Yesterday was only brisk, however, and I went to pick up our cargo bike from the shop where it’s been being upgraded, and I rode it home. The verdict is that while the e-assist certainly assists, and makes it possible for me to get up hills, it’s not the breeze that the bike we borrowed this summer was. I have to work, sometimes quite hard, to get the bike moving and keep it that way. That is good, in that I’ll be getting some awesome exercise as I cart my kids around, but it does feel somewhat intimidating, too. I think that means we’ll start small. I am not sure I’m going to ride Hazel over to her piano lesson next week, for example, because there’s a huge hill between us and her teacher’s place. I will probably start with trips to the grocery store, around the neighborhood, maybe to the zoo. We’ll see.

When I got the bike home, both Emily and Hazel wanted to get in the bucket and go for a ride, but Joanna just kept saying, “No, no, no!” So I took the other two for a spin around the neighborhood, and by the time we got back Joanna had changed her mind. So Ted put on his helmet, and we put Joanna in next to Emily, and they took off. When they got back, none of the kids wanted to get out of the bucket. It was cozy and warm under the blankets. We swapped riders again and went off to get hotdogs for dinner. The kids were thrilled. We will have to work on how to keep them warm while out and about; their little hands and feet got quite cold, despite being under blankets. There’s quite a breeze, and they’re not moving to keep warm. But I’m sure we’ll figure it out.

Getting the bike followed on staying up practicing until 11:30 the night before; getting up at 6:30 am yesterday morning to practice some more; and then a two-hour morning rehearsal at 9 am. I’m feeling the effects of all this work. I practiced for a couple of hours today, and really should do more, but I’m beat.

Tomorrow we have to go for another lice check. A babysitter who started recently discovered that she had them. We should have brought her into the salon when we first discovered them, but we didn’t think she’d been around the kids enough time for it to happen. Wrong decision. So now we all need to go get rechecked.

Other than that fun adventure I’ll be practicing, practicing some more, teaching, and practicing some more. Whee!

Tonight when I went up to participate in bedtime, Hazel got upset when I settled the twins into my lap. “I never get to sit in your lap,” she cried. And she’s right. So I managed an appropriate Positive Discipline response: I told her I could tell she was sad, and I could understand why. I told her that tomorrow we’d talk about bedtime and come up with another way of doing it so that she could get what she needed too. The current way is based on her sisters’ nursing (which they did tonight, funnily enough), but that activity is definitely winding down. And it used to be really imperative that they not get disturbed while nursing, but now it really doesn’t matter, because if they decide they’re done I’ll be ok with it. We’ve made it over 2.25 years, and I’m glad of that.

Hazel responded well to what I said, and I look forward to problem-solving with her and Ted to figure out a routine that works for all of us.

And now, even though the house has warmed up (our furnace was out last night and this morning), I am still feeling cold. I am a weather wuss now, living on the west coast. So I am going to go take a shower to get warm, and burrow under the covers and feel grateful that it’s not usually this cold. And tomorrow I’ll practice all the fast runs again. And the quarter tones. And the funky rhythms. And the Bach bow strokes. And everything else.

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