weekly 'what's up.'

This week has been a busy one.  It has been full of really great stuff, but man, am I glad it's Friday.  I am just such a hermit - I get super drained by trips out of the house, and we've had a lot of activities this week.  That being said, they've all been tons of fun, so I can't really complain!

Last Friday, I took the kids grocery shopping.  In recent years, I have gone by myself or with one kid at a time on mornings that Todd was home to watch the other kids.  But we haven't gotten into a routine like that here yet, so I've braved Aldi by myself with the kids a couple of times now.  And you know what?  It is actually getting easier.  I have found that it works best to wear Rocco in the Ergo, put Finneas and Laurelai in the front of the cart (Lord love you, Aldi, for getting two-seater carts!), and let Atticus and Penelope walk.  We have made it in and out of the store in under an hour, had enough space in our cart for kids AND food, and had no meltdowns.  I don't want to jinx anything, but it hasn't been the worst thing in the whole world.

This lady helped me unload all the groceries once we got home!

Last Saturday, we met some friends at The Big Tree.  As you can probably gather from the title, it's a big tree close to town - the biggest tree in Missouri, and the largest Burr Oak in the entire country, to be exact.  They estimate it is around 350 years old.  This thing isn't messing around.  I wasn't really sure what we'd do once we got there, but the kids played in its shade for over an hour.

After that, we headed to a nearby spot where we could get to the bank of the Missouri River.  We had to climb down a hill to get to the rocky shore, and between my bad, bad, terrible ankle and the fact that I was wearing Rocco in the Ergo, I was pretty useless.  Todd helped me down the hill, and then I just kind of camped out on a rock while I trusted the other adults in the group to keep my kids from drowning.  But everyone was fine and had a great time!  Stuff like this makes me really kind of love it here.  I'm genuinely falling in love with central Missouri.  I mean, look at where we are.

I'll post more about that day next week.

On Sunday, we had our first members' class at Anthem.  Stuff is getting real, people.

And as for this week, well...: the mornings have been full-up with swimming lessons.  I also met a new mom-friend at lessons, so I've been spending a lot of time with her after lessons are over.  We also launched connection groups this week, so we're back into the swing of that now (which I love and am so glad to have back in our life!).  We went to the library book sale on Wednesday, which was uber disappointing, but I still mined out a few good finds.  I've spent much of the week in a desperate scramble to prepare myself to start homeschool next week.  And it's been outrageously hot (the heat index was pushing 110 yesterday), so we're all totally and completely strung out from all the activity, social engagements, and draining weather.  But we've survived and lived to tell the tale!

Lastly, I'll leave you with photos of these beautiful girls.  How big are they getting?!?!

All this humidity has turned her hair into a dream.

Please be praying for our start to next week.  We're needing to jump back into school, but Lord A'mighty, it's probably going to be a rough transition.

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