Meltdowns, love machines, and things to look forward to

Last week, I had the mother of all meltdowns. I was overwhelmed by all that I had to get done, and was finding myself choked with panic at the lack of time to do it all in. I was exhausted and beat up. I found myself in tears on the phone with the Husband, and later that day with his mother. I had reached my breaking point and knew something had to give.

So, what did I do to deal with the crises?

I threw my hands into the air and took the week off.

I know. How very adult of me.

But I have no regrets, you see, for I played with my babies in the sunshine, soaking up the last few hot days of summer. I laid on the couch and held my (big and jointy) little girl in my arms. I watched movies. I finished a book that was started far too long ago (and LOVED it so much that I am planning to re-read it). I actually cooked dinner a few times, and did not have laundry blocking the mudroom walkway every night.

And, I won't lie to you, it felt damn good.

But I would be remiss if I didn't share with you a couple snapshots from the previous week when we got some time with these delicious people:

Sam, the undeniable Love Machine

Luke, the self-proclaimed Hurt Machine

Emme, the long-lost sister Hannah's been waiting her whole life for

Jake, the Nerf-wielding, wrestling, boxing, sword fighting pal that fit right in around here

We felt so lucky to get a few days with our cousins from the east. The girls took to each other like long-lost sisters and we only saw them emerge occasionally from Hannah's bedroom to grab snacks before they were off to swap clothes and write plays together.

The big boys bonded instantly over our vast arsenal of Nerf guns, prompting Gabi's oldest to immediately rush to Target and spend his savings on a whale-sized Nerf gun of his own. Chase and Jake spent their waking hours traipsing through the woods hunting squirrels and jumping endlessly on the trampoline. It amazed me that they never seemed to get tired.

The little twinks, well, they had each other and big cousin McKay for entertainment. I will forever think of them as the Love & Hurt Machines, and will always regret not snapping that photo of Sam and his hilarious naked typing. (there's one for the wacky google searches, eh?)

But most memorable for me were the poolside chats with Gabi and late night pontificating about all things related to life. She is one of the wisest women I've ever met and I will forever value her thoughtfully rendered opinions. She makes me laugh like nobody else I know, and she has a knack for making you feel beautiful, smart, and put together.

Which my meltdown last week clearly proved otherwise.

But it truly was a magical few days, and we were definitely wishing for more when they pulled out of the driveway to head for home. Luckily, we've conned them into Thanksgiving at Amish Country again.

(Any bets how many times the Husband pleads to go off the grid before we even get there?)

Stay tuned for a busy upcoming week: I've got photoshoots galore to show you. The new business seems to be off and running with a bang, which makes my heart so very happy. Plus, school starts on Tuesday for my babies. (As does my new career as a lady who lunches and sees a lot of movies.)

I am sad, yet I am also secretly excited.