A few weeks ago my sister in law mentioned going to a wine festival together. And I was like Uh, YES. Wine festival? Taste all the wines? Where do I sign up?! So I asked Adam to take the weekend off so he could watch the kids. And then I got thinking… in the 7 years we have had kids, we have not once had a weekend getaway. We have had family vacations, trips to the zoo, and many, many adventures, but never just him and I, alone. I sighed and thought, some day. But I’ve been doing all this soul searching and trying to reach out and ask for help when I need it, which I truly, rarely do, so I thought I’d get brave and ask my sister. A long shot, I know. She has two babies, I mean BABIES, who are 1 year apart. Imagine the drop of my jaw when not only she said yes, but her amazing husband said yes, too. She was all like it’s just one night, what could go wrong? And I was all like, uh, would you like me to write a list? And then a few days later she was all, well why not just meet me halfway on Friday so you guys can get to it on Saturday. And that was a mega jaw drop. Two days, no kids? Is this real life? Also, I wanted to know what medicines Sam was taking. Because, really, I’d like whatever she’s on. I was nervous about booking a hotel. Four kids, someone is bound to get sick, or injured, or something! But we booked it anyway. And anxiously awaited the moment we could pass off the kids and take a giant breather. Recharge.
So, introducing my beautiful sister, Samantha, as a guest blogger. Here is her take on the big weekend. I only cried like three times reading it. No big deal.
When my sister told me she was searching for an overnight babysitter, I didn’t hesitate to volunteer. I mean why not, right? It’s only 1 night, and when does she ever have this opportunity? I’m not sure she’s had a night without any children in 7 and a half years! Not to mention, her children used to be my life. Before I moved, I visited them all the time. They came to my house and spent the night frequently. I saw them sometimes more than what they wanted I’m sure. I moved before Charlotte and Anisten were born, and therefore I haven’t had the opportunity to bond with them as closely as I had with Aidan and Elsie.
I thought for sure my husband would say “hell no” anyway, so I told her I’d ask him. To my surprise, Jared agreed and said he was up for the challenge. Really, Jared? 6 kids. Just us. A 7 year old, 4 year old, 2 year old, 2 one year olds, and a newborn. Fuck it. Let’s do it. I called my sister and said mark us down for the night… hell, mark us down for 2 nights. Let’s keep the kids the whole weekend… because well, why the hell not?!
Friday night didn’t start off as well as we anticipated. Due to poor planning, I picked up the kids in Bucyrus (halfway) in the MIDDLE of dinner time. Aidan had literally gotten off his school bus and hopped straight into his mom’s car… not to mention during his field trip he fell and jammed his wrist. The entire 30 minute car ride, I listened to Aidan crying and screaming that his wrist hurt, and that he missed his mom. His crying led to Eloise melting down. Poor Eloise didn’t know what the hell was going on. And then there’s Gracie. Oh, Gracie. The girl that can never stop talking. But I couldn’t hear a damn word she was saying. All I could hear was the sound of wind, and a crying boy with a painful wrist. Ani was staring into outer space, and poor sweet Alaina was sleeping. Get. Me. Out. Of. This. Damn. Car.
Finally, we’re home. And Jared has pizza ready. Let’s eat. Let’s eat and get these kids settled and to bed. Fast forward an hour or two… Charlie is playing so sweetly in the corner with a dollhouse. But what’s that behind Charlie? Wait, what’s that on Charlie’s back? No. You have got to be shitting me. Literally. Low and behold, Chuck shit. Chuck shit up her back, out of her diaper onto the floor, on the curtain, EVERYWHERE. Is this night over yet? Did I mention I’m not drinking due to nursing my youngest? Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.
As my husband and I finally crawl into bed, Jared leans over to me and says, “We’re in over our heads. We need to call in reinforcements.” What a wimp. Buck up, buttercup. We got this.
I wish I could say that I have more crazy stories for you. I wish I could say that I had meltdown after meltdown. That I fought with my husband. That I absolutely lost my shit. That we called in reinforcements…. But I can’t… all I can say is my heart is so full, and I am so thankful to have the most amazing children in my life… and one of the greatest experiences.
Saturday morning started off with smiles and little giggles. I sat on the couch and watched my children interact with their cousins. I watched the infamous “mean Chuck” turn into the most kind Charlotte. I listened to Aidan tell me about Minecraft and Herobrine. I watched Elsie make Alaina giggle. I watched Charlie break up an argument between Anisten and Eloise. I just watched… and watched… and everything I saw made my heart explode.
Sunday was just as amazing as Saturday… for the adults. Poor Eloise became sick of sharing. She was sick of sharing her toys, but most of all she was sick of sharing her Mommy and Daddy. But not those Snyder babies. They love to share. They love to love. And they are so kind. After a discussion, they all gave Eloise her space. They let her calm down and come to terms with the fact that her space had been invaded. With a little bit of time, she came around. And the watching continued….
At one point, I promised the older kids an ice cream cone. Of course in true Mimi style I couldn’t just hand it to them. Bubba and Mimi had to play a little prank. What’s that kids? Oh, we ate all of the cones. Every last one of them. “Go get more,” says Chuck as she mean mugs us and points to the door. Insert room full of laughter here. Just one of the many moments of laughter we experienced.
Aidan, Elsie, Charlotte, and Anisten love their mother. They absolutely adore her presence, and if any of you see their interactions with their mom, it’s so obvious. I thought for sure one of them would have a meltdown and say how much they wanted to go home with Mommy. Especially Anisten. Anisten and I have always had a love-hate relationship, and I thought for sure she’d hate me and meltdown. But no one did. No one asked to go home. No one asked for their mom. No one. I think they needed me just as much as I needed them. And let me tell you, I really REALLY needed them.
As I watched their car drive away, my heart sank. There aren’t many moments like the many we had this weekend. They live so far away. It’s not like I can just pop in and say hello. It’s not every day that I get those warm hugs and hear those sweet voices saying, “I love you, Mimi.” Because after all, those 4 kids made me a Mimi. They made me the best Mimi anyone could ask for. I give them all of the credit. I cherish all of the time I have with them. Every. Precious. Moment. Because those moments are few and far between. And without those moments, I would not have the full happy heart that I do.
Until next time Snyder babies….