Sunday, September 4, 2016

Living in London

Life right now is a bit odd.  It is fun and adventure sprinkled with boredom, and the monotonous normal stuff.  Most days we go to bed totally exhausted, in awe of this adventure and occasionally with feeling of "when am I going to get the laundry done" or iron the shirts, and "what about groceries?"

Most days we are up by 6:30 to get ready for our day.  Hyrum heads off to work and the kids and I eat breakfast, clean it up and then off we go on our adventure of the day.  Some days we take off together and Hyrum hangs out with us in the morning and gets home late after meetings with people in California.We tend to use the tube because it's fast and a bit more reliable than the buses.  I make 8-9 peanut butter and jam sandwiches, cut apples, and fill water bottles.  This all goes in the backpack with a few other snacks.  The pack weighs between 25-30 lbs after it's packed.  I lug that around London all day while one of the kids usually wears a pack with our rain jackets and umbrella.

Laundry is exciting.  We have a tiny washer/dryer unit so I do at least one load of laundry every day.  Usually I throw some laundry in when I get up in the morning and hope I can get it through the dry cycle before we have to leave.  When we get home in the evening I throw in another load.  The laundry comes out damp and steamy but quickly dries out as it cools.  It's slightly inconvenient but after trying to air dry a few loads, the machine is the way to go.

Kitchen space.  We are lucky to have a fridge and freezer though the freezer is pretty full with the landlords stuff.

Cooking is a bit tricky.  We have one large saucepan, a wok, a small stockpot, and one 15x10 roasting pan.  The oven is only big enough for the roasting pan.  I go grocery shopping about twice a week.  The kids are eating a lot of bread; we go through about 2 loaves a day between breakfast and lunch.  When I go shopping, I take my backpack with several other bags inside.  I always hope I don't buy too much for me to carry!  It's been interesting not having Sam's club and grocery shopping for one meal at a time.  There aren't large quantities of anything except chicken that I've found so far.  Their family size is for about 4 people, not 7.  There aren't a huge variety of brands and ethnic foods include far more Indian and Asian flavors than they do Mexican.  I've learned how to make bread without measuring or having a mixer.  I've made rolls and pizza dough so far with decent results.  Thankfully, Hyrum brought back measuring cups and spoons when he went to California so I can measure things out again.  Thursday night we had a pizza party and movie night and I bought a variety of British candy for the kids.  It was fun.

Girl's room

We have two bedrooms so the girl share one room, with Hyrum and I in the other.  The boys sleep in the living room.  With Spencer on a futon, Ben on a floor mattress, and Jonathan on the couch.  The kids usually head to be between 7:30 and 8:30.  Ben doesn't usually settle down until dark so one of us sits up with him until he finally gives in to sleep.  Hyrum and I then spend our evening writing, me on this blog and he, his journal.  This goes on often far later into the evening than we ought.

Our room and staging area.

We continue plugging away at school.  It's been bit hard to fit in on a daily basis but we try.  We head to Ireland in a few days and there, life will be much slower.  We'll be able to work a bit more on school stuff.  School has been challenging.  It's hard to help everyone on different things and they all seem to want me at the same time.  All of us deal with pride and stubbornness in different ways which doesn't help the situation.  There is a lack of consequences if they choose not to do their homework so we're trying to work through that.  I'm proud of the kids though because they are getting things done and improving.  I feel like we'll be pros by the time we leave Ireland, at least that's what I keep telling myself.

Living room, dining room, boys bedroom, wrestling room . . .whatever you need room.

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