Sunday, October 08, 2006

If I had seven kids...

If I had seven kids, I'd be crazy. I'd be locked up in a lunatic asylum.

Tonight, these were my children:

Clockwise from top left: Eddie, Gabi, Mikey, Zach, Andrew, Luke and Megan

Pam and Phil went out on a date night, to celebrate their anniversary, so we took their kids. We decided it would be cool to cook some hot dogs on the fire-pit. Since Mikey and Megan were already here, Becky and I ended up hosting seven kids for dinner.

I like to do things like these to remind myself why I'm so glad that I only have two. (And will only ever have two!) Rule #1 is never have seven children. But if you find yourself unavoidably with this many children, Rule #2 is never let seven children into your home. I don't know what large Catholic or Mormon families do in the winter, but if I had seven children, they'd never set foot in my home, even in February.

"Outside!" I'd shout. "I want you all outside!"

They obey pretty well, as long as my voice is loud enough. The children swirled all over the yard, each of them like little four foot tall tornados, except much noisier. Then, when it was time for hot dogs, Andrew (aka, Mr. Streptococus Supergerm) felt queasy. This boy collects strept like some kids collect stamps.

So Becky took Andrew in the house to lie down, while I kept the other six kids from burning themselves in the fire. Andrew recovered of course, at least enough to come out and finish his hot dog and annoy his sister during story-time in front of the fire.

We told lots of stories by the fire: Gabi told the story about Adam and Eve (fresh from today's readings, almost word for word), and then followed it up with the story of Noah. I told a made-up story about Hamish McTool, the son of a Scottish miller, who had to battle a troll to cross a bridge with his father's new millstone. (There were three challenges that had to be won: spitting for distance, in which Trolls are very talented, tossing the caber for accuracy, in which the Scots have the advantage, and the arm wrestle. It was only by using his cunning intellect that Hamish was able to win that battle!) Then I followed up with the story of Samson and Delilah, as best as I could remember it, since the kids seemed interested in that. Luke and Andrew gave their rendition of "Yoda's Been Working on the Railroad," and it was as tuneful as you might expect.

All in all, it wasn't exactly a peaceful dinner, but I think the kids enjoyed the campfire experience.

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