I posted a picture last week of our crazy family.
We intentionally took it just as we are.
Dirty. Off-center. Naked littles. Greasy hair. Fussy babies. Etc.
That is what our lives are like most days. You often write and say how you envy our lives, but I think if you look closely, you’ll see that our days is almost exactly like yours, only in Africa. So here….look closely:
On an average day
5:30-8:00am – we wake up with the first crying baby, usually Baby Girl or E2, and start making breakfast. Lately our breakfast of choice has been crepes with peanut butter, Nutella, and bananas.
9:00am – breakfast is close to finished and we leave the mess behind in the kitchen to sit on the couch and listen to a sermon from Tim Keller. A 30 minute sermon usually takes us over an hour because we pause to change diapers, answer the phone and the door, make bottles, and bring in drying laundry from the rain.
10:30-12:00 – if we’re lucky…all 4 littlest littles take naps and Christina home schools Mikisa and Lily. Rachel and I take turns dealing with whichever littles are still awake, tackling the breakfast mess, making lunch, and trying to answer emails and write blog posts so our moms know we’re still alive.
12:30-1:30 – lunch. mess. peanut butter in hair. massive diarrhea blow-outs. need to drink Coke NOW. Did Lily get her vitamins? stop eating compost, twins! there’s a stranger at the gate who wants to move into our back yard. no thank you. Mikisa just poured her water on Ellie. someone wipe that runny nose.
The afternoons vary around here depending on who decides to nap and how tired the mamas are. We have come up with a make-shift schedule that we tend to stick to, but that can be deviated from on a moments notice due to “Africa time” or “mamas changed their minds”.
Monday: Pool Day – there is a great hotel pool about 2 minutes from our house where there is a baby pool for the kids. We go as often as possible because it guarantees long afternoon naps, but Mondays are a must.
Tuesday: Help our friend down the street in her community outreach
Wednesday: Ekisa Day – Christina and Mikisa go to Ekisa, a home for children with special needs, so that Christina can work with some of the kids there one-on-one. Rachel and I hold down the fort here at home.
Thursday: Cook for a friend Day – On Thursdays, we cook dinner for our neighbor, her many children, and 10+ house guests…in exchange she lets us make brownies in her oven and wash our clothes in her machine. After dinner we sit and talk while the kids clean up. A pretty sweet deal if you ask me.
Friday: Picnic Day! – we pick a location anywhere near Jinja and take our lunch outside. We’ve only done this once so far, but we loved it!
Evenings find us back at home, surviving dinner and pre-bed meltdowns. We turn the music up loud and try to have a dance party while we dish up rolex (that we buy down the road) and mango juice. After dinner, we have our “lala” time. This is what Mikisa calls it and it stuck. Christina and I pull out the violin and guitar and have a little jam session and then we sing with all the kids. Eli and Ellie clap, Eden and Ali Rose just listen, and Mikisa and Lily sing their hearts out. After “lala” time, the littles go to bed and I get some sweet one-on-one time with Lily to talk over the day, read Boxcar Children, and pray. The mamas sometimes crash early, but more often then not you’ll find us sitting around in the living room drinking Coke and catching up with the other side of the world on Facebook or Skype. Sometimes, when it has been a really bad day, we watch a movie. We only watch funny movies.
We’re getting the hang of this crazy life and I think this picture we took today proves it. We successfully got all 6 kids bathed, fed, napped, dressed, CUTE, and noses wiped by 11am AND managed to get this picture on only the 3rd try. I’m beginning to think that six kids and three mamas makes for a pretty beautiful mess that I’m grateful to be a part of right now.
On a TOTALLY unrelated note…please, how cute are our kids???