So we've got a beautiful big fresh-cut Christmas tree standing in our house. It'll take a few days to get it decorated since the lights alone are quite a production on a 12 foot tree. But it's here. And after all we went through on Saturday to get the thing, we're happy with even a naked tree right now.
It's always an adventure treking up to the mountains to cut our tree but this year turned out to be the longest, most complicated and grossest tree expedition yet!
Stop here if you're quite squeamish about throwing up...
Now, you have to know that we've had the stomach flu going on around here this week. Last Wednesday night, Jared and I woke up to Eliza crying over a barf-filled bowl. We were proud of her for using a bowl but a bit confused why she had a bowl downstairs. Oh well. After getting her cleaned up and tucked back in, just as we were getting back to sleep, we heard more strange sounds and thought it was Eliza again. Nope. It was Oliver throwing up all over his bed. Nice. Jared and had a hard time holding it down ourselves as we cleaned up that one. We got him showered up and got his bed all fresh and clean, put a bowl by his bed, explained the finer points of what to do when you get that bad feeling in your tummy (use the BOWL, not the BED) and went back to bed again, wondering who'd be next. But nothing else happened. Everyone woke up feeling fine. We did find out the mystery of the bowl Eliza used being downstairs. Isaac had thrown up earlier in the night (in the toilet, thankfully) and had brought that bowl down there to keep by his bed. He'd used it a couple more times and then left in the bathroom for Eliza to find and use. Yuck. We hadn't heard a thing from Isaac who felt he was man enough to handle his own sickness in the middle of the night. Poor guy.
So I kept Isaac, Liza, Oliver and Silas (he hadn't been sick at all but probably had some germs going on) home for the day. They all seemed perfectly well but we didn't want to spread any germs. We were grateful the sickness had passed in just a few hours for each kid. We played games and read Christmas stories and it was a very nice day. Ashton felt totally great so he went to school.
I got a mild version of this stomach bug and felt a little queasy all day Friday (so we had a nice movie afternoon since that was all I was up for) but it was over quickly. Then when he came upstairs Saturday morning, Ashton informed me he'd been up in the night throwing up. Darn. Oh well, he'll be fine in a couple hours if he's like everyone else, I thought. I had him lay down for a while. Then when Jared got back from the scout food drive, we sorted through all the snow clothes for our mountain tree trek, did a little Saturday cleaning and loaded everyone in the car (along with tons of canned food from the drive) and delivered the food to the food bank.
Then we realized we should really take the other car to the mountains even though the roads were clear. So we went back home and got Jared's car and moved all the snow clothes into that car and reloaded everyone and headed out again.
As we were headed out of town, Ashton frantically announced he was going to throw up. Jared quickly pulled over, but since Ashton had seemed totally fine when we loaded the car and since we were in a hurry, we hadn't really thought to put Ashton in a place in the car where throwing up would be convenient. Ashton was in between Silas and Liza in the back seat and as soon as we pulled over, he reached over Silas to get the door open and hop out. Well, Jared's good old car has one door that won't open from the inside and you guessed it, Ashton needed to get out that very door very quickly. While Ashton frantically tried to get the door open and I frantically tried to get my seatbelt off to get out and open the door from the outside, things just didn't work out. Silas and the window and door by Silas ended up covered in throw up before I could wrench that door open and let Ashton out. Oh yuck. Ashton got out and emptied the rest of his stomach and we mopped up Silas the best we could with random snow clothes while Silas wailed - poor guy. No wet wipes - those were in the other car. No extra clothes - we always keep extra clothes in the van. We rolled down the windows and headed back home - for the second time.
I'll spare you the details of clean up when we got home. Ashton and Silas took showers and lots of clothes went into the washing machine and everyone was grateful Ashton hadn't eaten anything that day so there were no chunks involved. Jared's car is now cleaner than it has been in a long, long time.
A while later, we set out to get our Christmas tree for the third time (this time without Ashton who said he felt great but needed a nap). Are we crazy or what? But when else were we going to get this tree? We couldn't go on a week day because of work and school and the need for daylight for this project. The kids were dying that we didn't have a tree yet and the thought of waiting until next Saturday was just too sad. We thought about a tree lot tree and I even considered the beautiful ease of a fake tree for a minute or two - but the expense of either of those options is prohibitive (especially since we already paid for a tree cutting permit) and once you've cut yourself a beautiful tree in the beautiful snowy mountains, it's hard to do anything else... So we headed to the mountains. And it was beautiful up there. And Ashton was fine. The kids loved the snow for a bit and then cried that their toes and fingers were cold since we're all such wimps living in St George. But we found a beautiful tree and it's in our living room and I guess all's well that ends well.
But Jared was sick all day yesterday - that tummy bug finally got him and it got him longer and worse than anyone else. Thankfully, he's fine today and he's on his way to SLC for meetings up there. Silas seems to be the only one who's escaped this sickness. I keep asking him if he feels OK and watching his eating but he really seems fine. Random - but nice that someone made it through!