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Monday, July 11, 2016

Cassie's Journal - July 11, 2016

I know that weather forecasters generally try their best, and that I have some advantages for predicting the weather should I want to bother using my Sight to do that; but it’s a bit tough to plan summertime fun when it seems that they sometimes simply call up the forecaster a town or three up-wind from them to tell them what it’s like outside – and then use that feedback for their forecasts.

The good news for us is that the weather held nice for us all day; and the bad is that we couldn’t have a camping adventure again tonight because by the time we wanted to set up for that; the forecast had been changed from just a very small chance of a shower or two to a near-certain chance of thunderstorms and quite a bit of rain.  At the risk of harping on this, can we even still call it forecasting when those forecast changes come just hours ahead of the incoming weather?  Most farmers around here can tell what the weather will be like that far out – and they don’t need fancy weather satellites and high-powered computers to do that!

Okay, that’s enough ranting for one update.  Let’s get to the news of the day.

Tai Chi by the river was great; breakfast in the sunroom was fun; and we decided on our canoe to the whirlpool adventure then – after checking the forecast to make sure that we could do that.  I guess I don’t get to stop talking about forecasts quite yet, since I’ll also mention that we picked to go canoeing again today already because the forecast wasn’t looking as good for two or three out of four of the remaining four days of the work week.  That’s changed now too, but who knows what it’ll be by morning; so I’ll just wait and see what happens.  Picking the canoe trip meant getting busy after we finished the breakfast clean-up.

Michael had breakfast with us, but he went home to do some chores while the rest of us either went to work or got busy getting everything ready for a canoe ride to the whirlpool – including packing a picnic; getting the canoes, lifejackets, and paddles to the river; and rounding up the kids, teens, and gear we were taking with us for the day.  We did not take most of the youngest kids because of the obvious issues with that, but we did bring Brianna because she already has us wrapped around her little finger – and because she can travel with her diapers.  Ethan, Ehlana, Jayden, Aiden, and Naomi were the next-youngest; and then we had the rest of the cousins with us too.  Rowen was able to juggle her work schedule to come along, but Tim couldn’t; and missed out on the whirlpool adventure this time while he was needed to help his father and uncle.

It took until nearly ten o’clock before we were ready to start paddling upriver; but then we were off and had a blast as we spent a couple of hours getting to the whirlpool.  We played for an hour once we were there; had our picnic after that; and then played in the whirlpool for another hour before paddling home again.  While everything we did was fun; the highlights of the playtime at the whirlpool for me all revolved around playing with Brianna.  She’d been a lot of fun on the trip to the whirlpool too; and a great little cuddle buddy for most of the way back while she snuggled against my legs on a blanket and had a couple of naps along the way.

The morning plan was to set up our camp after getting home, but Mom broke the bad news to us when she welcomed us home; and we had to come up with a new plan for the night.  While camping was out, the barbeque dinner that Mom and Dad were booked to host was still a go; and we decided to take the chance that we could go ahead with a campfire too.  That left making new plans for sleepovers; and we ended up having the cousins split up for the night instead of all together – and we only ended up with Ethan, Jayden, and Aiden at our house for the night while Dawn and Jillian took their turn for a night with my grandparents; and Naomi took Ehlana home with her while the other girls were either with Aunt Leanne, Aunt Grace, or Aunt Deborah.

That’s going to work out rather well for me, since I’m seriously thinking about keeping Michael here with me for a sofa sleepover with just Violet and Dillon up here with us on the third floor; but we haven’t actually decided that as I’m writing this while he’s getting the three younger boys into bed and having some guy talk time with them before coming up here when he’s done with that.  I do want to get this done now in case that happens, though; so you can probably guess that there’s a very good chance that Michael will still be here in the morning when we wake up – assuming I let him get some sleep at all! ;^)

Where was I?  For some reason, I’m suddenly distracted and not very interested in typing on my computer!

We took care of the post-canoeing work; Rowen and I joined the dinner work crew while Michael, Dawn, and Jillian took the lead on kid control; and we all had more help for the work and entertainment as the rest of the adults and other guests arrived.  Dinner wasn’t anything fancy – just your standard barbeque fare; but getting everyone fed took a while, and by the time the younger kids were finished eating ice cream; dunking them in the river was the best solution for getting them clean again.  The swim time helped to get cooled off again too; and then we had a trip to the park meant to help tire out all of the younger kids before coming home again for the campfire.  We had a blast with that too, and Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I took a group of the older kids and younger teens for a bike ride on the trails while the parents and grandparents helped out with the younger kids.  After that, we went for a swim back at home again; and Dad had the fire going by the time we were finished with the last round of water play time.

It was tough to tell at first whether the play time actually worked to tire out the kids – even though it definitely did that for the parents and grandparents; but the campfire music and appropriately-rated scary stories did soon have the youngest kids ready to cuddle in laps and drift off to sleep.  Since Michael and I were the primary music providers, I didn’t help out with carrying toddlers to bed at other houses; but we did help out with cleaning up from the campfire when it was decided to put it out at eleven o’clock so that the working parents could take their kids home and maybe eventually get some sleep – assuming the aunts don’t end up staying awake and talking to the girls staying with them for half the night!

That reminds me that I haven’t mentioned Eddie very often.  He feels a bit left out because he’s seven and a half; and a bit old for Ethan and Jayden, but doesn’t have any guy cousins closer to his age the other way either.  Uncle Adam and Uncle Nick are helping to make his holiday here fun anyway, though; and he really likes both of them a lot.  I’m sure that the age difference to Ethan and Jayden won’t be as big of a deal in another couple of years – and then be an issue for a while when Eddie crosses over ahead of them, but as long as he’s having fun here; I’m sure he’ll keep coming back for more.

I seem to be taking a few too many side-trips; but we are almost to the end of this report.  After getting the back yard cleaned up and the fire put out, we said goodbye to the few remaining campfire guests – including Michael’s parents, Jake, and Stephanie; and then we came inside for the night.  Dad had a bit of work to do in the office, so Mom went with him to do some work too; I’ve already mentioned that Michael’s taking care of the younger boys; and Violet and Dillon just came up to bed while I came up to my room to get cleaned up, changed, and deal with the must-do work and computing that couldn’t be left for tomorrow.  That turned out to be just one family business job; there wasn’t anything pressing in my email inbox; and once I’m done with this update; I’m good to go for some quality cuddle time with Michael.

Yes, I cheated to get the work done, and Michael is supposed to have a time limit for that cuddle time with me before he’s to be home for the night; but Miranda won’t be surprised at all if I do keep him.

Oh, alright – I’m going to keep Michael here for my cuddle buddy all night!  If I wasn’t; this update wouldn’t be happening until after he went home; and we all know that!

I feel so much better now!  That’s also all I have for tonight, and Michael should be up here soon; so, until next time...

...May the Magi Force be with you!