100 of things of summer is almost over.

The whiskey is almost gone. 

Noel and Lindsay made a trip south to IKEA because that's what you do at the end of the summer when you have four kids.  You find reasons to go to a store that specializes in dorm furniture so that you can spend three hours in a minivan without kids and experience the peace of God which transcends understanding.  

Trevor is doing something important for an important job in an important city.  I'm not sure where.  All i know is that my assignment today was to keep all eight kids alive.  To make the challenge more interesting i was given instructions not to let them have too much time on screens.  That's like telling Mike Jordan to play left handed.  He can do it.  He did it, but it's more challenging.  

To make matters more exciting today was Pork's birthday.  She wanted a hamster, so now we have a hamster named "Hammy."  Tiny is still recovering from the death of his previous mouse Clarewin, but was inspired by Pork's birthday choice and so he is now the proud owner of "Diana" a grey mouse. 

Still the question remains.  What do you with eight kids when you live in Death Valley and don't have a vehicle that can transport everyone? 

One additional note seems important.  Today marked the beginning of the Olympic Games.  So ...

We began with a flag drawing ceremony.  

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We then turned our attention to opening ceremonies.  We looked suspiciously like the third reich, but it was festive nonetheless.  

Participants competed in five main events: tower building, ball tossing, memory, trivia and the one leg stand.  Wookie put on a clinic snagging three gold medals, followed up by Bubba Chuck and Wids who each took home a gold as well. 

Tower building was the first event.  Participants were required to stack all ten blocks on top of each other, show the tower hands free for one full second and then deconstruct their project returning the blocks to their original position.  The winning time was 31.3 seconds, just 4 tenths of a second off a WR.  

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Next we did the ball toss.  The Carlsons ran away with this one finishing first, second, third (and fourth).  To make matters more interesting for the Carney kids, Lloyd finished fifth.  

Because our olympic committee appreciates the whole athlete, we decided to move beyond physical advantages and reward those with epistemic ability.  The memory event included 8 pairs of cards that were laid facedown.  Participants were given a time limit based on their age.  Should a participant match all eight pairs within their time limit, they also had their time recorded.  The best time and most matches won.  

You might find it curious that the three events took us nearly two hours.  So Lloyd peaced out with a nap and the rest of us rewarded ourselves with a bucket of popcorn and a movie rental (The Mighty Ducks (Minnesota Movie (nothing like 1992))).  But the extravaganza resumed at 5:18 PM CST with a trivia round.  To everyone's amazement gold hopeful Wookie was the first one to get out failing to answer the question "this marine mammal consistently looks like it's smiling at humans."  Even more puzzling is that fact that Bubba Chuck won.  He cruised the animal section and then crushed the food and Harry Potter categories as well.  

We concluded the olympics with a challenge of both mind and body.  An act of perseverance.  The one leg stand.  It was a dramatic event.  Participants dwindled from 6 to 4 to 3 until the final 2, Tiny and Wookie, pushed themselves nearly 25 minutes in an epic battle of the oldest children.    Wookie's experience proved to be too much in the end.  But Tiny had plenty to be proud of with a few trips to the medal stand including this silver.