would be the time between when my kids are dismissed from their groups at church and when they are all safely buckled in their car seats. Getting them together, ready, and to the van is what might be called an adventure, if your idea of thrills involves simultaneously:
1. hollering at a four year old to, "please come back here, wait for mommy, please wait", while he runs blithely down the sidewalk, now and then stopping and turning around so he can flash you a huge isn't-this-a-great-game grin
2. (and) being hollered at, by a different four year old, "mommy please don't leave meeeeeeee," because she is falling behind as you attempt to catch up with the child from item #1
3. (while) carrying a very squirmy two year old who wants to get down desperately, so he can walk all by his big-boy self...usually right into the street
4. (and) trying desperately to keep the six year old from A) egging on child #1 by chasing him, B) distressing child #2 further by taunting her, or C) jerking child #3 around by the hood of his jacket when you put him down, or toppling him over in the same manner.
Personally, it isn't my idea of adventure at all. I like roller coasters and hiking. Road trips. I don't enjoy herding four wound-up kids down a sidewalk an hour before their bedtime, with a 35-minute drive to look forward to (you all have no idea how long and how loud Eva can scream). But it's worth it, more than worth it, because I am immeasurably blessed to be part of the Porch. They- you- are a second (far more supportive) family. So thank you.
And this week, I discovered that for the price of one cookie from Caribou ($1.50), I can actually get them to all head in the general direction of the car, at approximately the same speed. Bribery, yes, but entirely justified, I think. It's like buying sanity.