Baseball, birthdays, & battling sickness

The 3 Amigos wrapped up baseball last Saturday. It was such an exciting season, and the boys have come such an incredibly long way with their skills. Just amazing progress! Catching is really the only thing that really needs to be tackled hard.

Zeke merrily getting to first base. Hey, as long as he’s fast & running *through* the base, it’s cool by us.

Interestingly, the Y coach disappeared about half way through the season. The dudes told me he had gone to the beach and surmised that he had probably gotten eaten by a shark. Hmmm, not sure about that, but his status is still unknown.

Thankfully, the dads happily filled in for the no-show coaching. And the Braves, who played the role of Bad News Bears during most games, ended the season on an upswing.

On 10/16, our double trouble turned 7! To celebrate the big occasion, Daddy took off work, and we went to the Durham Museum of Life & Science with Bret and Granny.

Here’s Houston stopping a grounder & getting it where it needs to be. Good defense, dude!

We got in for half price to this expensive museum as part of a homeschool group, and thoroughly enjoyed seeing all the cool displays and doing the hands-on exhibits. It was a great day of loving and learning, and a wonderful way to ring in the twins’ 7th year of life.

Daddy even treated us to some seriously authentic Mexican cuisine at a taqueria. With the combo of homemade corn tortillas, expertly cooked meat, and a delicious salsa-and-topping bar, we might just have to drive to Durham again just to eat there!

Gabriel makes his way to home plate. “Don’t look at the ball” was alway our mantra after a hit.

That evening, we had a campfire and cake with neighbors, including some longtime neighbors we’re finally getting to know (like Nick’s dad and Gavin’s parents), and our new next door neighbors. Then we had Bret and Matthew to the casa for a sleepover.

It was a wonderful time, except for when Matthew stepped in the hot ash the following morning and had to go to the hospital. Poor, fella.

It was a good lesson for all the kids, though: Listen to the adults when they say “don’t step in the ash ’cause it’s still hot” … and also for Matthew alone: When mama says to grab your bag and come home, don’t hang out for another hour, eat a sandwich, and get yourself burned.

The 3 Amigos & Bret get ready to take the Durham Life & Science Museum by storm. Bull City will never be the same!

Seriously, we’re so relieved that Matthew is okay and so grateful that his mama was understanding about the sitch. Thank God for protecting that sweet boy!

The other big event in October was Stephen’s and my 15th anniversary on 10/14. We didn’t do anything special, since our trip to the Dominican Republic was really an early celebration of the notable occasion. Thanks for putting up with me all these years, baby!

Interestingly, we’ve made the most of these memorable moments with full gusto, despite the fact that the whole fam has been battling sickness for the last month or so. It’s just finally tapered off recently due to heavy doses of over-the-counter meds for me and a trip to the pediatrician for the boys.

The dudes fully embrace the “Into the Mist” exhibit. What a neat landscape to while away a Friday, while most other kids are stuck in a desk @ school.

Turns out that Zeke and Houston have a nasty mixture of ear infections and seasonal allergies, so we had to finally resort to antibiotics to kick their illness. But it was that blend of ailments that made all of our symptoms so hard to treat. Moreover, no one suffered a fever (except me only one night), and no one lost their appetite in the slightest.

Currently, Gabriel’s doing fine, as are the other two kids on their fancy meds. But Stephen and I are still battling a croupy cough, although the lethargy and major congestion have started to subside. We’ll survive, but man, has it been a pain and a major wet-blanket to fully enjoying my beloved autumn!

Durham is called Bull City due to an ambitious marketing campaign by Bull Durham Tobacco Company to try meet the demands of American smokers post-Civil War. How interesting is that?!

We haven’t let some hacking and snotty noses stop us from taking part in everything, though. For example, Gabriel and Zeke went to Gramsey and Papa’s sans Houston for two nights in mid-September. They were treated like kings, of course, but did, however, do some work in Lisa and Albert’s garden. Child labor, baby!

The twins attended their first piano party at Miss Julie’s on 9/24. They were thrilled to finally go to the event where we’ve been dropping Houston off solo lo these many years. I stayed for this one, but I think that Gabe and Zeke are seeking greater independence. So, I shall be dropping off the 3 Amigos at tomorrow’s party. Good luck, fellas!

At CC on Tuesday, Zeke dissects owl pellets w/ Julia & Gabriel w/ Allie. Isn’t learning fun?!

On 9/30, we had Houston’s pal, Isaiah, to the house for a sleepover. We’ve known him since our first year at CC, and his mom, Celeste, is one of my fave ladies there, but the kids had kind of lost touch since they weren’t in the same class last year.

Well, this year’s a different story, and Houston wants to rekindle the friendship. Having been treated to the best pizza in town at Mario’s, fun at Awana, video games, and playing in the rain, I think Isaiah feels the same about Houston and los gemelos (how you say “the twins” in Spanish).

The boys attended a party at Chuck E. Cheese in early October. It was thrown by a nice gal named Carrie, who I first met at Christie’s house last year. She also knows Tricia and Jeremy, too, since they attend the same church as Carrie (and as did the J-Crew).

Houston & his all-boy CC class conquer the tin whistle. Aren’t they just so cute?! (And yes, I know Houston needs a haircut.)

This is another friendship I’d like to foster. Not only does she have a whopping four boys, but she’s a stay-at-homer, who also homeschools. We are everywhere! Now, if we could just see Tricia and Jeremy for something other than a kid swap, that’d just be dandy!

The whole family attended a party at Mr. Dan’s that night. (Remember him from our crazy Hanging Rock camping trip?) I called it an “international” gathering, since Dan is South African, another couple there were Romanian, and there was a smart-ass Canadian present for good measure. The Triad’s melting pot is definitely alive and well!