This week my brother Jacob came home from his mission. 2 years and I am sure that my mom felt like it was 20. Jacob had been serving in the Massachusetts Boston Mission. I think he was very happy to have gotten home before all the cold weather hit. I do not know about you, Jacob, but I despise snow. I got to talk with him on Friday and catch up a little with him. He is excited to start school and spend time alone. Jacob, I would like to point out that having a companion post mission is much better than on the mission. You get to pick one you like and you can go for a run without dragging anybody else along with you. Scratch that I like to go running with Devin better than I like running alone. Well, Jacob, welcome home and we are glad to have you back.
Devin had a very full week. It was filled with fun and excitement. Tuesday was the funnest Tuesday of the month, Pack Meeting. Devin did all types of fun stuff with the boys. This month's theme was heroes so the boys got to do lots of stuff to warm up for Pack Meeting. Devin set up some cones and the boys had to weave through the cones with a soccer ball. At another location Devin had the boys do an army crawl through a maze of tables. They also did pushups, a run and jump rope. Devin collected all the times and the kids got a little reward for having the best score. There was a 4 year old boy there who could almost stand under the tables and he just sprinted through the course and won that one. He was so proud to have beat the older kids. The boys also had to do heroic things during the pack meeting like stop a train from running off the tracks, or save a baby from getting run over. Devin really had a good time with all the boys when they came up and talked about their heroes. The boys seem to like the cheers. I decided to change up the cheers a little this month and the boys got cheers based on their hero. A 6 year old little boy could not sit in his chair any more and had to tell us about his hero, Super Man. Everyone stood on one leg laid their body out flat and flew for his cheer. I think this was one of the funnest Pack Meetings in a long time and Devin made it much funner. I am a little sad because I am not going to get to be Cub Master any more. Our Cub Master is finishing up his training and will be back for the next pack meeting. Maybe Devin will help me stage a coup and dethrone the Cub Master.
Saturday was fun. I started the day out by reading for many hours before I had to do anything else. This was relaxation at its best. Soon after that Grandma and Granddad who had come the night before got up and we had a good time talking and eating breakfast. Eggs and toast is my favorite breakfast on Saturday. Then the fireworks hit and Nate and Autumn, my brother-in-law and his wife, came over with their kids, Ben and Emily. They had some stuff to discuss with Grandma and Granddad. I took the opportunity to play with the niece and nephew. They where noisy so we went upstairs to have our fun. We started the games off with a few rounds of hide and go seek. This game ends up being very lame because of Devin. She keeps the house in such good order and uncluttered that it is difficult to find a good hiding place other than the closets. We soon went to a game of chess. That lasted about 3 minutes and we went to fort building. The bunk beds made a good fort we jumped off the beds threw the kids around and really just got some energy out. Their favorite game was jumping on my back and then telling me things to do. I would follow their instructions exactly but I would do it in ways they could not see in advance. The would tell me to walk into walls so I would do it backwards mushing them first. I was happy to have distracted them while Grandma and Granddad got the news. A position in an assisted living facility had opened up. They are going to be moving in this coming weekend. Granddad and Grandma have been traveling to much over the past few months and where looking for a more permanent solution. Devin and I are excited to have them close by so they can drop in for Sunday dinner. Playing with the Ben and Emily was just a warm up for what happened latter that night.
Our bishop has been out of town for most of the last three weeks. His wife has started to show some of the stress of not having your companion around so we volunteered to watch their kids. Saturday night all five kids got dropped off at our house and we had a blast. When the parents left they asked what time they should show up and pick up the kids. I responded, “Late!”. Jason and Michelle were at our house as well so the fun was more than doubled. I thought the kids would like to help put pizza together for dinner but they did not want anything to do with that. Jason is much to exciting. The kids played tag in the front room. The love seat and the couch where the bases and the game is played much like a normal Payne game with lots and lots of taunting. The only major change to the rules was that once you tagged someone they had to act like an animal of your choice while they were it. We had chickens, walrus, snakes; the list could go for a very long time but you get the idea of all the sounds that would have emanated through the house. My favorite was 2 year old Cambree. She had a green shirt on and acted like a cute little frog. After dinner I tried to calm things down by putting a movie on. The kids could not agree on one so we put on a second movie upstairs. As soon as the movie ended it was time to play again. We went upstairs and started to play in the bunk bed fort. You will notice from the attached pictures that this was a massive fort. There were passages from one compartment to another. It filled the room and fell down many times. Lucky for us it was easy to put up. Everyone went wild with all that was going on. Devin would pin me down and the kids would tickle me. Jason and the kids kept throwing balls at each other. We were a little disappointed when the parents showed up at 9:00. Only 4 hours later to pick up the kids. I guess that when you get older 9:00 is late. We were happy to have had them over. Earlier that day I got a warm up for having everyone over. If you need your kids watched or entertained please call us. We know how to up the stakes on fun at our house. We hope in the coming week your homes are filled with as much fun and laughter as ours is.