Happy Easter, everybody! I feel like the fact that it was so late this year had kind of a weird reverse effect that made it sneak up on everybody, which may be why nobody thought to ask anybody about hey, maybe we should do a ward choir number. Nobody except for the choir director (Athena), who was too busy to act on it. It's a shame, too, because we wanted to have a special musical number instead of just a congregational hymn (although usually I'd much rather have a congregational hymn, because then I'm more likely to be involved; I prefer making music to listening to it), so I ended up pinch hitting by doing a piano solo, which is actually my least favorite kind of special musical number, because if I'm playing accompaniment I'm fine, but when it's just me, I get stage fright. My hands were shaking uncontrollably.
But the point is, when I was trying to figure out what I had time to practice to the point where it would invite the Spirit instead of being an earsore to everyone, I found a choir book with a really pretty song called "He Is Not Here," and it would have been nice to have a choir sing that. (It would not have been nice to do it as a piano solo, because it was very much not written to be that. I ended up playing a medley of Primary songs, including "He Sent His Son," "I Think When I Read That Sweet Story," "He Died That We Might Live Again," and "I Wonder When He Comes Again.")
It's kind of an odd thing, though, because technically by partaking of the sacrament, we celebrate Easter every Sunday. But anyway, I'm glad we have a day to make sure that we focus on Jesus's sacrifice for us, and I'm grateful for what He has done for me.
Anyway, I suppose this isn't entirely unrelated to the story I was going to tell about bedtime with our nephews and niece this past Wednesday...
So going back to our story about family visits, when I left off yesterday, it was time for the kids to go to bed. They were on vacation and it was fun and exciting, so because they asked and it seemed like a good idea to help them settle down at the time, Sarah said they could watch an episode of TV before they had to go to sleep. Of course the boys wanted to watch something that the girl was not even remotely interested in, but that was okay, because Hermy got to borrow Mommy's smartphone.
What the boys wanted to watch (searching through the hotel's free On Demand TV shows) was a show from the History Channel we'd never seen before, but which the boys knew and liked, Forged in Fire. It's a reality show where blacksmiths compete to make superior blades, and it's pretty fascinating. Unfortunately, the On Demand wasn't really working very well, so the shows kept getting canceled before they were done. We tried two episodes, even though technically they were only supposed to get one.
But it didn't matter, because these kids were not settling down in the least. Hermy was the worst offender. First she had to get water, then she had to wash her hands, then she had to play with the buttons on the safe, then she had to get water, etc. etc. Sarah was sure she was going to end up wetting the bed. Meanwhile, Grawp and Hagger were sharing the other bed, and Grawp was Not happy about it. At one point during the show, Grawp complained, "Hagger's leg keeps touching me!" to which Hagger corrected, "I'm kicking
you!" Because that makes it better.
For whatever reason, these kids would just not settle down. To make matters worse, Grawp realized that he didn't have the plushie he'd gotten in a Happy Meal earlier that day, and he absolutely Could Not sleep without it. I don't remember how all the dynamics worked, but at this point Grawp had the one bed all to himself (Hagger and Hermy are still young enough that they're usually sleeping in Mom's bed anyway), which was a development that Grawp was very much in favor of. Nevertheless, he could not sleep without Pocket the Penguin, because he would feel so alone. (I'm not sure if it's fair of me to post about this, as it makes Grawp look pretty bad. At least I gave him a code name? But he's a kid, and it's a pretty normal kid thing to do, and it's also kind of cute, maybe? Anyway, if his mom asks me to take it down, I will.)
And part of the reason I wanted to bring it up is that we just watched So Dear to My Heart again, and as if the kid in that didn't remind me of Grawp enough, there's a part in the movie where Jeremiah is all angry and sulky, and I was like, "Wow, that kid is just like Grawp."
Oh! For those who were wondering why we didn't just supply the penguin--it had been left in Grandma & Grandpa's car, which they had taken to that dinner they went to. We tried asking Grawp what we should do to solve the problem (Sarah even got Hermy to let him borrow her
plushie, but no dice), his only solution was to get Grandpa to bring it back, and that wasn't really a viable option. So Grawp protested by insisting he was going to sleep on the floor in the corner. (If you ask me, it looked like a pretty sweet nook to sleep in, except that I'm much older and would probably be super stiff if I didn't have proper padding.) Then Hermy decided she wanted to sleep on the floor, too, and she took her pillow and put it in the nook under the nightstand, so now she had this bedstead that was just her size and it was adorable. But none of that worked out either.
Eventually the whole matter was resolved when Athena bought a new iBook and started reading The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe aloud to all the children. (That's how this whole thing relates to Easter.) At first listen, it almost seemed like maybe the language was just a little too old for them to follow along. Athena felt like she was talking to herself, so she stopped, but then Hagger asked her to go on. It wasn't long after that that all the children were happily listening to the story, and even Grawp put his frustration aside enough to make sure he had a good view (from alone on his bed) when he could tell there was a picture being shown. (And we solved the lonely sleeping problem by letting him hold my hand while he went to sleep.) I think it was by the end of chapter four that they were all fast asleep.
A few minutes later, the fireworks started going, and we were all extremely grateful that the children fell asleep before the explosions began, and that they're all very heavy sleepers.
We went home and finished up some work before going to bed and taking advantage of our banishment to sleep in. When we woke up late, we discovered an email from one of our publishers about a new simulpub that they wanted the first chapter of that very day. So we had been planning to take the whole day off despite our banishment, but this simulpub was very desirable, so we changed our plans. And instead of trying to kill time before going to meet our ticket into the parks (I will explain that), we translated a new manga! Tadah!
Despite spring break being a season instead of a week now, there is still one week that is designated as the official spring break, and that was the week Sarah and her children went to California Adventure. It's also the week our passes were blocked out. Fortunately, one of our fellow Primary people works at Disneyland and had already offered more than once to help us get into the park. She had a dentist appointment for that day and so couldn't let us in first thing, but that was okay, because we were banished. In fact, it was perfect, because it gave Kimee that much more time to spend with the whippersnappers before we came and eclipsed her with our awesomeness. (I'm sorry. I can't resist.)
Unfortunately, our Primary friend's bus ride from the dentist turned out to be more adventurous than she'd planned (no accidents or anything, just missed buses and the like), so we didn't actually get into the park until about three. And then our (California) adventure began...
But that will have to wait until tomorrow, because we need to stop staying up so darn late.
Today I'm thankful for Jesus Christ and His Atonement; sacrament meeting going well; Primary going pretty well too; having a neat illustrated copy of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; and getting to see some more really great stories on Story Trek.