whatever works

Almost every night, same thing. After bedtime, various ailments suddenly appear: one is called I Have a Fuzzle in my Eye, another is My Throat is Sore Even Though I’ve Been Playing Happily All Day. Often, it’s I Lost my Best Stuffed Animal and I Think He’s in the Car and Can I Please Go Get Him? or I Left my Water Bottle Down Here and I’m ReallyReallyReallyReally Thirsty.


Last night Afton had the one called I Have a Tummy Ache. I offered apple cider vinegar diluted with water (which really is a good remedy for tummyache) and he hesitantly agreed, but asked me to add honey to it.

“Nope, no honey after bedtime.” I looked over at Andrey, who was watching the scenario carefully and I could tell he was seriously considering whether or not he wanted a tummyache. “Still want some, with no honey?”

Afton puts on his best, most decrepit voice and weakly whimpers okay. A few minutes later, I’m back upstairs with a tiny cup of what I hope will fix I Have a Tummyache for at least a few weeks.

I hand it to him. I sneak a look at Andrey across the room. He is sneaking a look at Afton and holding his tummy, letting out the faintest moan.

(It should be noted that these children were healthy all day,
had no signs of a fever, illness, or any other ailment than not wanting to submit to bedtime)



Afton takes the cup, and Andrey experiments with a louder whimper and looks at me. “Watch Afton,” I tell him, totally grinning. This is so exciting!

Afton takes a drink. He swallows and makes a face that reminds me of something I’ve seen in a Calvin and Hobbes strip. He shudders and hands the cup back, and…it’s a miracle!

Andrey is watching, and suddenly he is healed, too!

As I mentioned, apple cider vinegar (also known as ACV) is incredibly effective for tummyaches. It’s so amazing that they don’t even have to be the one drinking it to be cured.

Every week is full, and every day is full, and I usually can’t even tell you what happened on a particular day. I saw a dear friend this afternoon and she asked how long we’ve been home. I counted the months off: “August, September, January…three months.” Really. Yes, it’s that bad sometimes.

The littlest Lullabies and I took a walk to the mailbox this week to drop off some orders, and it was so good to breathe fresh air. I am a homebody and sometimes spend days inside before I realize I haven’t ventured beyond the porch to check on the kids while they’re playing.

Two by two by two, trooping down the road to the mailbox. Trooping back home to play.

Trooping inside for soup.



This is ham, two kinds of leftover sausage, celery, onion, garlic, lima beans, and kale. We make soup at least once a week, and I always think of my grandma, who also loves soup. She taught me to make it this way: “Whatever falls out of the freezer goes in.”

“E’cept for ice cream?” I’d ask, and she would reassure me that ice cream does not go into soup. I learned why as a college student…when I discovered that ice cream makes an excellent breakfast.

Sometimes we troop to the timeout corner, and sometimes a baby goes in timeout too, because misery loves company.

Can you guess what happened here? You might have seen something similar in this post a month or so ago. This time we got to clean out underneath a different bookshelf. We are still scrubbing, and He is still scrubbing us.

Other issues have come up, too. Vin has fixed our washer three times for three separate issues, and though it washes and spins and rinses now, it rattles the house. No problem. I figured out that the noise is diminished when you put at least one kid on top of it.


Chamberlain is a huge help with the laundry.


So, it’s bedtime again. Cups of tea steaming, books on the couch, kids in bed.Afton comes downstairs, scratches his tummy, and says it itches. I offer two choices of Solution for an Itchy Tummy that he can retrieve from my bathroom (coconut oil or lavender lotion), and he says, “But I’m supposed to not get out of my bed.”

“Then what are you doing down here?”

No comment. About face, back to bed.

Before he has gone up three steps, baby sister appears, pointing to her chin:

“I ‘pilled my wadder boddle an’ I hab a wet ‘pot on me wight here…and…and…it’s…wet.”


P.S. Yes, I do realize it’s November. It’s been a long three months. I will call it January if I want to. I’m totally ready for Christmas dinner this week.


P.P.S.  Just kidding.


whatever works — 4 Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing your family’s story with the world.

    I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas, and that 2013 brings you peace and joy.

  2. Cynthia read this post to me while we were sitting on her couch watching her day old beautiful-gift-from-God-bundle-of-joy. I paused and thanked the Lord for you two amazing Mama’s and your families. Praying that you will be super blessed – no matter what month it “really” is!