Thursday, May 21, 2009

Catch Up!

This has been a crazy few weeks! There's a lot I've meant to post, so indulge me as I play a little catch up!


Monday was Ella Grace's last day of preschool! It's so hard to believe that one of my girls will head off to kindergarten in the fall!

Mrs. Hamilton, thanks for a great year! Ella Grace learned so much and loved being in your class. On her way in to school on Monday, she got out of the car and said, "I'm not going to be sad that this is my last day!" and then burst into tears. Her love of learning is due in large part to you and Mrs. Bagley--thanks for giving her a great start to her formal education!! We love you!


Ella Grace also finished up gymnastics this week! She loved being involved and has come a really long way since February! She and the rest of the girls in her class received a medal (which she is VERY proud of). She's looking forward to trying something new in the Fall (soccer is her latest request--we'll see)!


Annabelle's birthday (May 18th) also marked the one year anniversary of my blog! Whoo-hoo! I've surprised myself by keeping up with it for an entire year! In honor of one year, I've decided to add a new feature--more to come!


Speaking of Annabelle's birthday, did you notice the bandage over her eye in her pictures? If not, here you go...

If you ask her, she'll proudly tell you the story of how she fell while jumping on a trampoline "yesterday" (it's yesterday every time she tells the story!) and hit her head on the "metal part." She was a tough one--wanted to get back on the trampoline later (we said no)! We opted out of the drama of a stitch or two!

What's she eating for her birthday breakfast?? One of our faves and her request--French Toast Bake! Will post a recipe someday!


Katie insists on walking these days. She rarely crawls anymore; if she falls, she gets right back up. Fall she did a few weeks ago--right onto our stone hearth! She cut the inside of her mouth pretty badly, but it could have been much, much worse! Needless to say, there is foam around the hearth now!


It has been one month today since Little Man joined our crew! It's been a wild ride so far! Much to be thankful for, much we've learned, many tears we've shed! We're all still adjusting, but I'm thinking through a post on what we've learned so far in this journey God's put us on!


We are spending the weekend with house guests! Our dear friends, the Thomas' are in town and we're planning a fun visit! Hope your Memorial Day is...well...memorable!

Thanks for hanging with me this long!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Annabelle!

May 18, 2006

May 18, 2007

May 18, 2008

May 18, 2009

Happy 3rd Birthday, Our Annabelle Kay!!

You rock our world!!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Modified Boy Toys

Strawberry Shortcake cruisin' in the police car!

Note the firetruck in the girls' dollhouse.

"BeeBop" takes a spin on the motorcycle.

Thanks to all of you who have donated boy toys to our house! It's been like Christmas around here! As you can see, the girls have enjoyed them as much as Little Man has!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

On Having Home

Previously I posted about being out in public with 4 kids. Perhaps you're curious as to what it's like at home with 4 kids?

Again, for the past 4 days, I've been going it alone while my sweet husband and their adoring daddy is away. That may taint this post a bit.

In some ways, it's no big deal. When I was pregnant with Katie several people promised, "Oh, it's just one more kid. There's no big change from two to three." That was an evil lie! We had a big adjustment going from two to three. Three to four, on the other hand, I can see the "just one more kid" logic.

There are logistical changes. Bathtime has changed. Laundry has changed (we had a lot before, we have a lot now; maybe, on second thought, laundry hasn't changed that much--Eric and I have laundry day down to a science...ha!). The noise level in our house has changed. The noise level in our van has changed. The condition of our house has changed. The amount of milk/juice we go through has changed. All those changes are fairly easy to deal with.

In other ways, it's a big deal. We have a bathroom in the hallway off of our kitchen. It frequently is used for potty breaks and trips to wash hands throughout the day. The number of times I say, "Go turn the light off in the bathroom and close the door," is nothing short of unbelievable! I've been tempted this week to unscrew the light bulbs and take the door of the hinges. Seriously!

Discipline, as always, is a challenge. Our little man has reached the comfort level of pushing limits to see what he can get away with. Lots and lots of time outs! For our little ladies too, I should add. It's as if they think, "Something's different...wonder if Mom will react the same way she always has?" She does, in case you were wondering! We've had our post-time out conversation so many times in the past few days that they answer my questions before I even finish them:

Me: Why are you in time...
Them: Because I chose to disobey.
Me: What does the Bible...
Them: ChildrenobeyyourparentsintheLordforthisisright.
Me: So you chose...
Them: Wrong, not right.
Me: And when you disobey me...
Them: I also disobey God.
Me: So you need to tell me...
Them: Sorry for disobeying.
Me: And you...
Them: Yep, need to do a little talking to God.

Beginning to wonder if I'm being effective at this point. Praying that the words they're hearing, memorizing, and reciting are somehow reaching their hearts. You all know that multiple time outs a day from one child is challenging mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually, etc. Multiply by that by three.

There are also a lot more things to multiply by three and four...kisses, hugs, I love you's, giggles, blown kisses, smiles, belly laughs, snuggles,, messes, accidents, juice cups, arguements, snacks...winks, I love you's in sign language, tickles, sibling hugs and kisses, pictures colored, love given...bowls of cereal, hot dogs to cut, chocolate milks to mix, socks to pick up, shoes to put away, fingerprints to clean off, booties to wipe...I could go on like this for a while...

Monday, May 4, 2009

Spring Program 2009

Ella Grace's K4 class participated with the rest of her preschool in the 2009 Spring Program. They sang "Every Move I Make", "Jesus Loves Me", and, I have to say, I was moved to tears by their version of "God Bless America."

Sorry for the poor picture quality!! She's the one with the pink dress and bow!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

On Having Public

I took 4 kids to the mall tonight alone. Hopefully it's obvious that I wasn't expecting to shop. Eric is out of town for the weekend, so we've been mostly "in" since he left. We were all a little stir crazy, so the mall seemed a logical destination. Our mall has a play area, a Chick-fil-A, and a Children's Place where everyone was promised a new pair of sunglasses. Those were our three stops, strategically ordered as to have appropriate bribes, er, rewards and consequences for good and bad behavior.

Here's the thing: I'm used to being gawked at as we walk through a public place. That happened when it was just the girls and I. Since adding a fourth to the mix, we've reached a new level of gawking. People no longer just stare. Now they look, look again, nudge the person next to them, both look, look at each other in disbelief, and dramatically comment: "Oh my [insert your own inapproprate word here]!" Most (thankfully) don't speak to me. When it was just the girls and I, they did, as a general rule. They'd mostly say, "Wow! You have your hands full!" In an "I feel really sorry for you" kind of tone. My answer was usually, "Yes, we're blessed!" In an cheerful kind of tone. That usually stopped the conversation...I think people would rather listen to complaints.

Is it easy keeping 4 kids happy, fed, diapered, pottied, moving in the same direction, paying attention, etc., etc., and yet one more etc. in a public place?

Nope! I'm not going to pretend that it is.

But, we've never been ones to let life stop because another joined our family. Our view when the girls were born was: "Welcome to the family. You joined us; here's how we work." Not, "Welcome to the family. Our world now revolves around you, so whatever you think is good..." The same goes in the situation we currently find ourselves in.

Overall our kids are well behaved in restaurants, the mall, and other places we may find ourselves in. We feel comfortable placing them and ourselves in these real life kind of situations! Stop gawking, people. Yes, we have four kids! Yes, they are ages 1, 2, 3, and 4--soon to be 1, 3, 3, and 5!! Yes, they are all ours! Yes, they are all super cuties! and Yes, we are blessed, blessed beyond belief!