Today was a long and weird day. I woke up this morning after a good night's rest (rarely happens these days ... and even more rare that my wife slept well, too!) and then got a relatively slow start to the morning. The boys and I basically spent some time watching the Olympic opening ceremony from last night while my wife and daughter went out to go garage saling. My wife found a wonderful table to use as a desk here in the home for my oldest son, who is home schooling as of this next week. She paid a whopping $12 for the table and a chair. Good find!
When she got home, I spent about an hour in the garage with the kids coming in and out while I attached a hitch and bicycle rack to the bottom of our mini-van. My wife had purchased it a few weeks back as an early Valentine's Day gift. It's something we've wanted for a long time so that we could attach a bicycle rack when we go camping. Previously we had been cramming all the bikes on another rack that could be strapped to the back door of the van, but with the kids' bikes getting bigger, doing it that way was becoming impractical.
(Many thanks go out to my neighbor, friend, and ward member from up the street who lent me his torque wrench and an awesome, heavy-duty jack to lift the van. When I was attaching the hitch, it was suggested by the manufacturers that I should release the mount holding up the exhaust pipe so that it would be easier to slip it in there. Well, the kind of bracket my van has on the pipe is a one-time-use mount. With my friend's jack, I was able to lift the van high enough that I could pivot the brace into place above the exhaust pipe.)
After I got the hitch on, I attached the new bicycle rack, then headed inside for lunch and some time on the couch watching more of the Olympics opening ceremony. A few hours later, I finally piled the bikes on the new rack, and the wife and kids in the van and we headed to the park.
A few weeks back, I took my youngest son to the park to teach him how to ride a bike, which he mostly did. He still needs to learn how to brake a little more gracefully and how to start on his own, but he can mostly keep on the bike. He is very good at the fall, and doesn't really hurt himself when he goes down -- that's a skill which importance shouldn't be under-estimated. Today, my wife wanted to see him ride, as she wasn't there a few weeks back, and he did a fine job. He's getting it, and it will be a wonderful day when we can all go together as a family on a long bicycling excursion.
After about an hour at the park, we all departed hungry and happy and came home to eat a wonderful meal that my wife prepared. She made chicken dijon, cous cous, and Brussels sprouts. The kids wouldn't touch it, but I thought everything was divine.
Afterwards, my wife made sugar cookies for Valentine's day and decorated them with the kids.
And I just finished watching Apolo Anton Ohno kick some butt in a qualifying round. He was sitting back in 5th place, then with three laps to go he completely buried the others while skating on the outside of the track. Totally amazing.
It's been a good day.