I don't have pictures, but want to record a few memories from the past two weeks:
1. Leo had his tonsils "shaved," his adenoids removed, and tubs put in his ears this week. How grateful I am for modern medicine. How the Ellis-male gene pool made it through evolution is a little unclear to me: we are all born with gian tonsils, huge adenoids, and ears that don't drain fluids. I've very happy for Leo that will hopefully be able to hear better, sleep better, and get sick less often as a result of these procedures. Already he's talking more and more clearly. It's pretty remarkable. (It reminds me of when Max had his tonsils out and what a difference it made for his life also.) We're very blessed.
2. I worked from home yesterday to be close to Leo and to help Kristin a little while she prepared for her first quasi-catering gig. It was excellent to be at home so much and see the kids when (a) they're not waking up and getting ready for school (their 2nd-least favorite time of day) or (b) getting in pijamas and getting ready for bed (their least favorite time of day). They were -- not surprisingly -- so much happier and better-natured during the day. They made jokes, smiled easily, were helpful around the house, and pleasures to be around. It made me grateful for the home environment Kristin has created where our kids are happy and well-adjusted.
3. Max in particular has been a huge help around the house. He's been cleaning more, offering to help Kristin take things up or downstairs, and he's just been wonderful. It reminds me that little acts of kindness make the hugest of differences in people's lives.
4. Max spent the night at Aunt Shauri and Uncle James' house the other night, and our home felt just a little bit empty (and a LOT quieter). When Aviva woke up the next day she came to our room and said, "I miss Max." We all did.
5. I recently went in to the kids room to kiss them good night and Aivva was already asleep. I asked Max why he was still awake and he said, "I was just thinking about space and how it never ends. I don't get it. How can something never end. It's keeping me awake trying to figure it out." I remember being his age and thinking the same thing. I told him so. I told him I've been trying to figure it out for 30 years and so far no luck. I told him instead I think about something else before bed, something I like. We decided he might fall asleep better and more quickly if he thought about pokemon or Jack and Annie books instead of space.
6. When Max was gone, Aviva really talked a lot. She really relished the opportunity to talk without interruption, and loved the attention. It was fun to hear more from her.