Friday, February 27, 2009

On The Road To Skinny, I Took The Train.

It is a very sad realization that I am not in my twenties anymore. After Emma was born, I was back in my pre-pregnancy pants after six weeks, and lost all the weight plus ten pounds by six months. After the twins, I was back in my pre-pregnancy pants after six days. SIX DAYS! I am not saying this to brag, but to enlighten you all to the fact that you burn 1,000 calories a day nursing twins. Seriously.

Here I am, seven weeks after having Drew, and I am no where close to my pre-pregnancy pants. I put them on while back, and after stretching them out for about two hours, I was finally able to button them. Excited over the fact that they actually buttoned, but knowing they did not look good, I decided to show Marty anyway. "Look, honey, I got them to button! Isn't that cool!" My husband, who I love for his honesty, replied, "Wow, honey. Hey, I'm suddenly craving... muffins!"

Gotta love honesty.

Weight has never been a struggle for me, but it is starting to be a little bit harder to lose as I age. Of course, the four-kids-in-four-years thing probably doesn't help, but I am really wanting to get in shape to keep my heart healthy so I can live forever and torment my children. I mean, so I can live to see my great-grandchildren grow. Yeah, that's it!

This morning I saw that OnDemand had workouts from Jillian Michaels, the trainer from The Biggest Loser TV show. While laying in bed, snuggling my kids all warm and cozy under the covers, we watched part of a workout. But I didn't feel any skinnier. Strange.

Man, I would love to look like that. Anywhoo, the workout seemed pretty good and as I went about my morning, I could imagine Jillian yelling at me, "You think you can just watch a workout? I get people to lose hundreds of pounds and you are not even willing to get off your tail and try it?!? MOVE, MOVE, MOVE!" I gotta say, just having Jillian yell at me in my imagination was pretty good motivation.

After breakfast I decide to give it a try, if for no other reason but to get Imaginary Jillian to stop yelling at me. The boys and I cleaned up the toys that were strewn about the living room and we tried the workout. The twins thought it was great, they were right along side me marching in place and trying lunges and jumping jacks. It was really cute, but not the greatest as I kept tripping over them and knocking them to the ground. Drew just watched from his bouncy seat, and fell asleep.

We got through the warm up and about two minutes of the actual workout. Holy Canolies, Batman! I decided not to push it and render myself useless for the next couple of days, so I fast forwarded it to the cool dawn and stretching part, where I heard Jillian say, "This was not an easy workout, but you stuck to it and made it this far. Good for you, you should be really proud of yourself." Why yes, Jillian, I decided to work the muscle group in my finger fast-forwarding about twenty five minutes of the workout. I am very proud.
But I did the cool down, and let me tell you, I am feeling the burn. I think this might be the road to fitness for me, since I don't have to go to the gym or walk around the block (which is actually about five miles, since we live in the sticks.)

I am refusing to feel guilty about fast forwarding the workout, since I am only seven weeks post partum and I did it, after all. I want to be able to do the whole workout by the end of March. We will have to see if I can stick to it! Anyone want to join me?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Thurdays with Tiffani

I am not a naturally creative person. Oh, I can scrapbook, I can make cards and other creative type things, but usually I am copying someone else and making their idea more geared towards me. Basically, I have no original ideas of my own. This is another example of that. Tiffiny over at The Story Of Our Life has this great idea called Thursdays with Tiffiny, and I am going to plagiarize it. Cuz that's how I roll. Besides, it already has a great title, don't you think? I will have to swap a few letters around, but If I am going to rip off someone else's idea, it might as well be someone who shares my name! Show her some love and go visit her blog!

Alright, here's the All New Thursdays with Tiffani:

I am Thankful for...New batteries that make the bouncy seat and swing work again. It's no fun when they both die at the same time. For that matter, I am thankful for cool thingies like swings and bouncy seats that allow me to neglect- I mean, keep Drew happy while I do other things.

I'm listening to...The kids chasing each other around. Being enetrtained without adult involvement, and giggling and being each other's best friends. I wish I could bottle up the sound. I would get out the video camera, but I know it would spoil the magic. It is the greatest sound ever.

What I'm looking forward to...Bedtime. And being able to paint the living room.

What's for Dinner Tonight...This is where writing my post the night before to post in the morning really gets to me. I have no idea what is for dinner on Thursday since it is now just an hour after dinner on Wednesday. But we had a shepherd's pie with beef I cooked in the crockpot for ten hours yesterday with carrots and mashed potatoes with cheesy goodness melted all over it.

Missing....A nursing bra that has been missing for almost two months. Seriously. How do I lose a bra? I think I will find it in the secret stash that is Ben's, that probably also holds a sippy cup and about two pounds of cereal.

This was fun! Be sure to check out Tiffiny's blog and see the original Thursdays with Tiffiny!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Father Of The Year

I am going to brag on my husband for a little bit. He is a wonderful man and an excellent father. He gets home from work after a long day (and his days are very long lately,) and plays with the kids to give me a break. He likes to spend one on one time with all the kids, and takes them on walks, on outings, and plays games with them constantly.

He is also a wonderful husband. He brings me flowers for no reason, and he tells me that he thinks I am beautiful constantly, even when I am unshowered, frumpy, and covered in spit up. I love him dearly and I am so lucky he married me.

Why am I telling all of you this? Because I am about to throw him under the bus. That's why.

Tonight we tag-teamed bath time. I put the older kids in the bath, and Marty played with them and washed their hair and bodies while I bathed and dressed Drew. Marty headed out with him while I rinsed off the other kids. I got the shower going, and started to spray them down a little. Almost immediately, all three were screaming hysterically in obvious pain and rubbing their eyes. I quickly started trying to rinse their eyes of whatever was causing them pain, but spraying them in the face while they are already traumatized is a horrible thing to do. All three are screaming and needing help, and yelling "No, Mommy!" through their tears, but I knew I had to rinse out whatever was in their eyes. Marty came running in, trying to figure out what in the world was happening. As I was working, I asked him, "What shampoo did you use?" He replied, "I don't know, the one with the ducks on it."

I am sorry, but the words "Bubble Bath" are almost as big as the ducks themselves. How on earth do you miss that?!? I finished rinsing Grant, and Marty took him and I started trying to get Emma's eyes clean. Marty started telling me all about how HE did not cause their pain.

Me: I'm sorry, but how is this not your fault?
Marty: Oh, it is, but Grant doesn't know that. I left and they were happy. You show up and start rinsing, and they are suddenly in pain. Then Daddy shows up again and saves them. See? I'm the good parent. And you are, well...
Me: Never going to help you at bath time again?
Marty: No, remember, this was my fault. So to be responsible, I just won't bathe them again. It's all on you now.
Me: I don't think so.
Marty: What, you don't care about our children's well-being? You are mean!

My husband, everyone.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Goin' On An Adventure

Adventurous exploration. Sounds so cool if you are four and two, right? Experiencing new things, poking things with sticks, and eating dirt. Perfect.

I decided to take the kids on an adventure yesterday. Yup, we walked to the mailbox. That's pretty much it. But it took almost an hour to get everyone ready, and the trek itself was a half-hour journey. Our driveway is pretty long, and our road has a speed limit of 50mph that no one obeys, so I was a little concerned about the kids being loose down at the end. I put the twins in their backpack harnesses with leashes and off we went.

Now I know that not everyone agrees with putting children on leashes like dogs. Frankly, I was never a fan either, but with two year old twins, safety comes first and I want the security to know that they will not dart after a squirrel and get hit by a car. You know, like a dog. I am not comparing my kids to dogs, but I am comparing their behavior at times to something similar to the behavior exhibited by members of the canine family. Chasing things, peeing on the floor, chewing books, they really are not that different if you think about it.

Anywhoo, we got bundled up and ready, Drew was in the front pack and the twins were wandering around, Emma was picking up rocks and we were having a blast. However, two little curious boys on leashes tend to get tangled a little when they are exploring. Kind of like, well, dogs. Maybe I should teach them to heel? We made it down to the mailbox, Emma put our letters in and put up the flag, and we headed home.

When we were far enough form the road, I unhooked the boys and let them run. We played red-light green-light and checked out the anthill in the neighbor's yard. We wandered to our pond, where the kids just stood looking for a good five minutes. I never thought my kids could be that still for that long. Impressive. We played in the yard until I was too hungry, and then we came in to have lunch and take a nap.

Today's adventure may or may not involve Costco, I haven't decided yet. Oh, and I realized that I completely forgot Not Me! Monday! yesterday, I'll have to make up for it next week. I gotta go put my roast in the crock-pot (thanks, Holly!)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Self-Confidence, Meet Cliff. Now Jump.

I am now seven weeks post-partum. This is the time that I am usually starting to feel better about myself, my waist has returned a little and well, nursing does good things to me. I feel like the little pooch of belly that is left is dwarfed by my massive buxoms, so it's all good. Yup, feeling pretty good about myself. Not into pre-pregnancy pants yet, but not stressing it.

Until yesterday. Yesterday was one of those deflating days where I no longer feel like I am doing well weight wise, but I am doing barely OK for someone who has four kids. There's always that catch, the 'for someone with four kids' justification that does not make me feel skinny at all.

But I digress.

Yesterday I was eating lunch with the kids, and Emma started laughing.

"Mommy, you have a big crumb on your chin."
I wiped with my napkin.
"Nope, Mommy, it's still there."
Wipe again.
"Mommy! It's still there, and it is big! You're messy."
Suddenly, it dawns on me. "Emma, that is not a crumb, that is a zit."
"Oh. Well, it's big."
Thanks a lot, kid.

(Ego deflates a little.)

Last night we went over to Holly's house for dinner. I am serving myself up when Lily, my five year old niece walks up to me.

"Auntie Tiff, do you have another baby in your belly?"
"No, Lily, I do not have a baby in my belly. But thank you for asking."
Lily rubs my belly a little. "I feel it, Auntie Tiff! I feel the baby."
Seriously?!? "No, Lily, there is no baby. That's just my belly."
"But I feel the baby in your belly." Clearly not believing me, Lily wanders off.

A little later, Lily walks up to me again. "Auntie Tiff? Is the new baby a boy or a girl?"

I gotta go do some sit-ups...

Saturday, February 21, 2009


I am such a dork. I have wanted to paint my living room since we moved in almost two years ago, and finally set aside Christmas money this year to do it. I have had a plan in mind for the longest time, have bought some of the paint, and have been informed of volunteer painters so we can have a painting party (thanks, Elizabeth!) I wanted my kitchen red, my living room navy blue, ant the dining room a nice tan. I have had the paint chips taped to the walls to show anyone who entered, cuz I'm a dork like that.

Last night Marty and I were watching the New Adventures of Old Christine, and I was looking at the paint in Christine's house. She has a pretty greenish turquoise with a nice almost peachy cream, and I started to change my mind. Cuz I'm a dork like that.

Now, I am back to square one on the painting thing. I have not bought the red or blue paint yet, thankfully, but I am going to make sure I am settled before I do. Could I be a bigger dork?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

One Little, Two Little, Three Little Relatives

This morning brought a stark realization. The extra gallon of milk that I really thought was in the back of the fridge was not there, so I have to go to the grocery store. With all the kids. By myself. OK, I thought I would be by myself for about ten minutes, but then Holly called and she will be at Safeway the same time I will, so she could help me. Then Marty called saying he was meeting a customer for coffee next door right before I was going, so he could help instead. It's a family reunion at Safeway today, hooray! I love small town life.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


After Drew was born, we had a lot of people come through our house. I found this lovely scarf in my bathroom a while back, but I had not been in that bathroom for a while, so I had no idea when it showed up or whose it was. I held onto it for a while since I thought I knew who it's owner was, but I was wrong. I am hoping the owner of this scarf reads my blog and will claim it. However, there is a catch. I am holding it hostage and there will be ransom. The owner must come to get it, bring dinner and stay for a visit. It seems strange to be so demanding when I do not know who I am demanding this of, but it's my blog and I get to abuse my bloggy power however I want.

Isn't it pretty? Part of me is hoping the owner of the scarf does not read my blog and then I get to keep it, but the thought of a free dinner that I don't have to cook myself and adult interaction with someone (anyone) is a teensy bit better right now.

In other news, I started to teach the boys how to drink milk form cups yesterday. Teaching Emma was easy, we put her in the clean bathtub with a cup and she practiced by drinking bathtub water. Kinda gross, maybe, but it was no cleanup and really, what kid has not drank bathtub water? I attempted that theory with the twins, but they took the cups of water and dumped them over each other's heads.

I gave them cups at the table last night and put about a half inch of milk in each. I showed them how to drink it, and they had a few spills and shocked faces (if you tip the cup up too fast, the milk will go up your nose. Every time.) But then they seemed to get it. I gave them each a hand towel and they wiped themselves up as they went. By the end, Ben was almost a pro, using one hand and actually getting some milk in his mouth. Grant liked putting the cup to his chin instead of his lip and tipping it back, soaking the front of himself repeatedly until he discovered the great fun of tipping the cup upside down and watching milk run across the table.

Note to self- do not attempt things like this while Marty is working. You have no one to help clean up or hold Drew while you bathe the sticky, milk-covered children. And if you hold Drew while the kids are in the tub, the floor will get soaked while the kids are playing war with the squirty bathtub toys and you won't notice, since you are on the other side of the bathroom playing "this little piggy" with the baby. Not a good plan.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Finding Miracles

Marty left work early yesterday (and by early, I mean it was President's day and he was not supposed to be working at all, but he put in 7 hours anyway since he is a wee bit of an over-achiever.) I loved it since Mondays are usually Marty's longest days, he leaves before seven, gets home to eat a quick dinner and leaves again till after nine. Having him here before four for the rest of the day was pure heaven. We got the kids bundled up and worked in the yard for a while. I love getting up in the morning to see clean flower beds and not the nasty, dead-leaf covered things that I have been viewing. I did my final pruning just after Thanksgiving, and my dahlias were still blooming at the time, so I never dug them up for winter. I sure hope they come back anyway, but we will see.

The kids had a great time playing outside. Emma is finally big enough to get into the vine maple herself, making tree-climbing sooo much easier. The best surprise of all was a few little green things gingerly poking their little green heads up out of the dirt. Ah, I love spring. Some of what was coming up was weeds, but a few tulips are starting to emerge and I can see buds on my clematis and the iris in the yard. Not a lot of green yet, but enough to give you hope that soon, the green will overtake the drab browns and greys of winter and spring will come.

Every year, I am amazed at the miracle of new life. The wide assortment of flowers and plants, the beauty that surrounds us on a daily basis reminds me of God's love for us and the miracles he works every day. Sometimes, miracles are hard to see, since you have to look in the unexpected places for them, but they are there.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Not Me! Monday!

Hello loyal readers! Here is the second edition of Not Me! Monday!

1. I was NOT feeling so crummy last week with mastitis that I let my kids eat cereal for dinner. And I certainly did NOT tell my four year old that as a reward for listening, she would get to fix dinner herself, then let her have free reign in the kitchen so I could stay on the couch, feeling like I was hit by a truck.

2. I also did NOT let my kids watch TV all day long without stop, in an attempt to keep them distracted so I did not have to entertain them. Nope, I am a much better parent than that, even when I am sick.

3. While fixing lunch today, I made soup and toasted bagels for the kids. I put the bagels under the broiler, thinking, "I cannot forget these and have them burn. Must remember the bagels!" I did NOT forget them to the extent that I smelled something burning, and instead of thinking, "the bagels!" I assumed there must have been some spilled food on the burner of the stove and stood there, staring at the stove and oven until smoke became visible. No way am I that sleep deprived and/or crazy.

4. I did NOT forget to change my clothes and paint the twins' bedroom while wearing my favorite shirt and one of the only two pairs of jeans that fit right now. (But while not doing this, I did keep my clothes clean!)

5. Instead of buying cards for each other this Valentines day, we did NOT just go pick out the card we wanted to get the other and take a picture of the message with our camera-phones and put it back to save the $12 it costs now a days for two cards. That would be horribly pathetic and bordering on copyright fraud, or something like that.

6. While at Target yesterday, I did NOT feel the need to sneak up on Marty and bump him in the rear with the cart. I did NOT accidentally hit his heel instead, causing him to say that his rear must be getting smaller, since I missed the intended target. Emma did NOT look right at him and say "No it's not, Daddy," effectively deflating his ego and causing me to laugh so hard that people stopped and stared. And most importantly, I did NOT just blog about the incident, even though Marty followed me through Target, saying, "You're not going to blog about that one, right? Honey?"
Don't forget to check out MckMama's blog for more Not Me! Monday! fun!

Love Is In The Air! And Other Stuff.

Happy week after Valentines Day! I have been working on this post since Saturday. Don't get your hopes up, it's not because it is going to be super-cool, just because I was busy and never finished it. I had a great Valentine's day, though. Saturday my wonderful husband gave me the best gift ever, the chance to sleep in! Well, I think the best gift ever might be a winning lotto ticket, but sleeping in is definitely in the top five. We went cheap for gifts this year, since we are broke. We never do much, Marty always gives me chocolate and flowers, and we do cards. This year I decided I would rather have a pretty potted flower that I can keep in the windowsill of my kitchen and will last a while. I don't know what kind it is, but it had cute little orange flowers and I love it!

Mom and Wayne offered to come watch the kiddos so we could get out for a bit between Drew's feedings. We went just down the road to Bob's Burger and Brew ( I know, romantic right?) since it was close and we figured it would not be a huge wait. The food was good, and it was nice to be out alone. We decided that Marty could not talk about work or fantasy sports, and I could not talk about the kids. So we sat in silence for a while and decided we needed to spend more time together, since there was nothing else to talk about. Pretty pathetic, huh?

Yesterday we went to church for the first time since Drew was born. I was so excited! We go to a huge church with 4,000 people in weekly attendance. The whole family goes there so we all sit together. Yesterday everyone in the family, for one reason or another was not there. Marty was ushering, so Drew and I sat by ourselves. When we were greeting each other, a nice lady saw Drew and said, "What a cute baby. How old is he?" "Six weeks tomorrow!" "Oh, good for you for making it here!" I stopped myself from saying, "lady, you have no idea!" and I just smiled at her instead.

After church we went to Target, then home. That's it, church, Target, home. And we took kids in and out of car seats 24 times. That puts a whole new spin on running a couple of quick errands! Anywhoo, after we got home we put the boys down for a nap in our room and I finished painting the twins' bedroom! Yee-ha! I still have a little finishing work to do on it, but for the most part it is done. And-I think I have picked out the paint I want for the kitchen and living room, too. I had decided to spend my Christmas money on paint this year, since I look at these walls all day every day and white is depressing. I need pretty colors! I have no idea when I will be able to paint though, since spare time is not something I have in excess.

Well, my children are fighting, so I'd better sign off. Look for Not Me! Monday! coming later today!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Who Needs Sleep?!?

Yesterday I was starting to feel better. My fever had broken, and although I was a little loopy (don't believe me? Read my last post. Holy cow, it's a little odd.) I was feeling good. I found the original version of Annie on OnDemand and put it on for the kids. I thought Emma would love it, and she did. She sat on the couch and did not move for the entire movie. This is very unusual for any of my kids to sit still for more than a few minutes, so after and hour I went over to check on her and she was burning up. Oh yeah, 102.8*. Wowsers.

I let her stay on the couch all day, she watched Annie three times. I must say, I was shocked at some of the language there. Miss Hannigan, who is played by Carol Burnett, is a little tramp and says some really suggestive things. I do not remember this as a kid, of course, since it is all over a child's head, but I could not believe what I was hearing. It's amazing what they got away with in the era of supposed innocence.

Drew has been fussy, and the combo of my antibiotics and his thrush medication is making him cranky and wanting to eat to calm him. Unfortunately, the combo of my cold and the mastitis has drained me so that I am not making as much milk. The combo of a baby who wants more and a mommy who has less is not going well.

I am doing what I can to increase my milk supply. I am going to drink a gallon of water today, and try to eat as much good food as possible. I know I need rest as well, so I made the attempt to go to bed at 10:30 last night. Mr. Drew continued to fuss off and on pretty late. No sleep for me, but at least I had the chance to finish the book I was reading, so I didn't mind. Luckily, I was still awake at 1:15 to hear the first, quiet "Mommy, Daddy!" coming from Emma's room, which meant I was able to get there in time to catch most of her throw up before she covered all her bedding. She as sleeping in a tent on her floor, so I was grateful for the lack of throw upon the tent itself. We got her cleaned up, properly consoled and moved into her bed. I fed Drew again and at 1:52 tried to sleep. It was not the sleep that brings about rest, however, because in my slumber I dreamed of Emma continuing to throw up and me continuing to clean her up and move her into clean sleeping areas.

I felt a tickle on my arm. In my semi-asleep state, still thinking I was cleaning up Emma, I brushed it off, and felt that horrid feeling that jolts you awake faster than almost anything else. The feeling of something there, something squishing between your hand and your arm. I managed to turn the light on to find a half squished earwig. I personally think earwigs are the creepiest of all the house-dwelling insects, and to have one crawling up my arm in my own bed, making it's way toward my face and my EAR freaked me out. I still shudder thinking of it. It was 2:08 am, so I had slept for 16 minutes thus far. I used hand sanitizer on my hand and the arm on which he had travelled and lay there wondering, do earwigs travel in packs? Was he the lead earwig, exploring the unfamiliar terrain, while his little pack of follower earwigs were hanging out by my toes waiting for the go-ahead from their devoted leader, who, unbeknownst to them, had not survived the journey? Would there be an earwig retaliation in the night, where the earwigs attack me and crawl up my nose and in my ears?

Fine. I checked all the bedding to make sure he was alone. And from what I could tell in my attempt to calm my nerves while not waking my husband or my son who had FINALLY drifted off to a peaceful sleep, he was a lonely earwig. I lay in bed, trying to sleep, and scratching every imagined tickle I felt for quite a while.

The last time I saw the clock, it was 3:14. Finally, sleep, glorious sleep. Drew awoke to eat, and I brought him into bed with me without waking up, it seems. Then I heard a noise that I did not know what it was, but once again, it freaked me out. It was coming from the floor on my side of the bed, and it was a little scritch, scratch, thump like a small animal on the carpet. We have had mice in our house before, (go HERE to read that story) so I was promptly alert. I looked at the clock. 6:18. However, I did not want to look over the edge of the bed, I think denial can sometimes be better. The scritching and scratching did not stop, and I started to imagine an army of mice attempting to climb my bed skirt to make me realize that earwigs are not the worst thing to crawl on you in the night. I finally looked. Our stupid cat was trying to kill a poor, defenseless q-tip. Throwing it around, batting at it with his claws on our berber carpet, you know, all the things people like to have a cat do, especially at six in the morning.

Since I was feeding Drew, I had to wake Marty up to put the cat out. We had left our door open to hear Emma if she needed us, and had forgotten to shut our bathroom door to keep the cat out of the garbage. He likes to steal q-tips and eat the cotton off the tops. What can I say, our cat is just as crazy as the rest of us.

I did not get back to sleep after that but Marty, wonderful man that he is, has offered to let me sleep in till noon tomorrow of I need to. I am adding this here to put it in writing, so that he cannot back out of his offer, even if his offer was made in the wee hours this morning while he was delirious from sleep deprivation.

Well, it took me three hours to type this post. I'm going to go drink some water and attempt a nap. Watch for next week's Not Me! Monday! I'm sure it's going to be a good one!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I May Regret This One...

I would never have survived living 150 years ago. First of all, without birth control I would have 27 kids by now, and when I got mastitis each time, there would be no lovely drugs to make it all go away. I love drugs. Wait, maybe I shouldn't say that, or someday Marty will run for President and the opposing campaign will quote me out of context. "Potential First Lady admits to loving drugs as a mother of young children! Jerry Springer has the story." Well, if Marty runs for president, I think that would be the least of the country's concerns. His plan to solve the war on terror is to just bomb the entire country of Iraq (he would warn them first, so the civilians could get out) and pave the whole thing and put a Wal-Mart right in the middle, with a sign that says "Brought to you by the U. S. of A.!" Yeah, I know, that is not a good plan. I would not vote for him for president. Love you, honey!

Anywhoo, I am feeling much better today. Not 100%, but definitely well enough to beat my children if necessary. I probably should not admit that one, either. Oh, well.

This morning, I gave the kids cereal and got ready. I was doing my best to get in the shower when I heard screaming. I came out into my room to find Grant had spilled his cereal, and instead of cleaning it up, he was hysterical that Ben was picking up the cereal and putting it in his own cup. Grant is sobbing, "Momma! Cereal! Bubba!" and pointing at Ben, who was working happily away. I simply said, "Grant, pick up your own cereal faster and you won't have to worry about it." I walked away. Someday these boys will need to learn to solve their own problems, right?

Well, Grant solved it. I heard more screaming, and found Ben crying as Grant had stolen his cereal cup, dumped the entire contents into his own, and given Ben back the empty cup. I have to admit, I was a little proud of Grant for his problem-solving skills, but I did give Ben back his half of the cereal and inform Grant that we do not take anyone else's food. I keep reminding myself that these are skills they are learning that will serve them well later in life, and are not purely designed by the devil himself to drive me to the nut house. And not the local, yummy Nut House, where you get to eat food and throw peanut shells on the floor, but the real nut house with the men in white coats that sing, "They're coming to take me away, haha!" I should really quit blogging now, I am not making any sense.

**Disclaimer- This post was written under the influence of drugs. I mean, prescription drugs. You know, the kind that were prescribed to me, not bought off the street. Anyway, I am not responsible for the contents of this post, and do not necessarily agree with the opinions expressed here today. I will completely deny this entire post if ever I or my family become famous and Jerry tries to use this against me. Thank you.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Potato, Potahto

My happy baby Drew is still happy. He is doing well on the thrush medication, and does not seem to have any ill effects because of it. However, I am not doing as well. I have mastitis. If you don't know what mastitis is, good for you, you probably don't want to know. But let me tell you, it's miserable. I have a fever, so I am alternating between being drenched in sweat, and having chills. And I feel like I have been hit by a truck.

This morning, I had the kids in my room with me and I was just laying down and resting. Drew was still asleep in his swing, and the older kids were snuggled up with me, watching a show. Emma was being a little wild, tackling her brothers out of the blue. I explained to her that mommy was sick, and I needed her to calm down and not get the boys riled up. She wanted to play a game. "Mommy, can we play tag you're it in here?" "No, sweetie, that is not a calm game. I need you to either find something calm, or just watch the show, or go into your room or the living room." "Can we play hide and seek in here?" "No, sweetie, that would wake up Drew. Why don't you play with toys?" "OK, Mommy, I will find something to do." A few minutes later, Emma is under the bed saying, "Boys, you can't find me!" Really? This was her find-something-other-than-playing-hide-and-seek? "Emma, what are you doing?" "We are playing Find Emma!" I gave her the Look. "I asked you not to play hide and seek." "Mommy, this is not hide and seek, this is Find Emma. It's a different game."

So it's going to be that kind of day...

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Add A Little More Crazy...

Last night was wonderful. Well, after cleaning up the milk on the sofa and on Ben, and getting the kids off to bed. After that, it was pure bliss. Why, you ask? Because for the first time in who knows how long, Drew did not cry and fuss from 10pm to midnight. Holly was teasing me a little that I am so excited that my child had an infection, but I really am thrilled that we discovered it, and are on our way to fixing it which will make a huge difference in our lives. And- are you ready for this one? I had a huge glass of milk last night. That's right, I had dairy and he still had a great night!I am so thrilled by this, every time I have nursed before I have had to eliminate dairy for at leas the first seven months. No butter on your toast, no ranch salad dressing or creamy veggie dip, no butter, sour cream, or cheese in your mashed potatoes, nothing.

I seems almost like God has been saying, "I'm going to give you a surprise. But don't worry, he will be perfect. Compared to what you are used to, you won't even notice he is there." OK, that last part might be a little exaggeration, but I think God has a sense of humor, so He is giggling a little at the joke. The bad part is, it is making me think it would be no problem to have another baby. That lasts for about seven seconds, and then I smack myself for the thought, and remember that 1. my husband has no sperm, and 2. we would most definitely have twins or triplets if we tempted God. Oh, and 3. we would be so incredibly outnumbered it would not be funny. And we would need something bigger than a minivan. And I would need more than one washer and dryer. And we would need more than three bedrooms. And I would need padded walls and one of those cool jackets where I could hug myself all the time. And I might start drinking.

I am off to try and accomplish things today. Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Not Me Monday!

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

This is something I have been reading a lot around the blogosphere. It gives us the opportunity to share our lows, while pretending it was not us that were less than perfect. Cuz, you know, I aim for perfection around here. Anyway, I have been thinking about starting, but now I am swayed by the fact that there are now prizes for giving it a go. Here's the first installment of Still Seeking Sanity's Not Me! Monday!

In an attempt to get out the door today and finding I had no black socks, I did NOT just steal a pair from my hubby's drawer instead of trying to find a matching pair of my own out of the sock bin. Lazy? Maybe. Resourceful? Oh, yeah!

I have NOT fed my kids some cheese every day for lunch since I gave up dairy, just to watch the lovely cheese fall in nice even slices as I cut it, and certainly NOT so I can just smell it. Just a little.

The boys are NOT currently just in a shirt and diaper, since they spilled dinner on their pants and in an attempt to keep laundry from completely overtaking the house, we did NOT decide to let them go until bedtime with no pants.

Grant did NOT just walk up to me, his diaper in hand, while I am blogging and nursing Drew. I did, however, one-handedly put the diaper back on. Grant does NOT have a diaper wedgie cause I cannot get it straight with one hand. And I did NOT just pray, "Dear God, please do not let him poop in the next ten minutes. Please! Amen."

Grant must have immediately gotten his diaper re-attached and made a beeline or the kitchen table, where he got ahold of Emma's milk from dinner and for fun, threw it at Ben's face. Ben was standing in front of the couch, so the couch was just covered in milk. I detached Drew from his dinner, and put him down while I got a hold of the cup and cleaned up the mess. While I was scrubbing milk out of our white couch, Emma (who was told to put her milk out of reach of the boys in the first place but did not do it,) came up to me and said, "Mom, you promised wen you were done feeding Drew you would read to me! And YOU'RE NOT READING!" I did NOT then give my four year old the evil eye and yell at her. Nope, not me.

Alright, I have to quit blogging or Grant just might burn the house down. Hope you enjoyed this installment of Not Me! Monday, and I will try to do it again, you know, if I ever can keep the days of the week straight.

It's a Great Day!

I love the sun. I love springtime. I love anything that promises that nicer weather is coming, and that the flowers and trees will be blooming soon. I woke up today in a great mood. I got a decent amount of sleep last night, my head feels much better, and I can breathe out of both sides of my nose without feeling like I am breathing in little icicles that are tearing up my sinus passages.

I love waking up and opening the blinds to see sunshine. There is something about it, it puts me in a good mood. Yesterday, my wonderful mother-in-law came over to hold the baby and entertain the kids so I could get some stuff done. I was able to sweep and mop the kitchen and dining room, clean the dining table, including taking a toothpick to all the nasties that have accumulated in the ridges around the edge, and clean the base of the table, too. I vacuumed, dusted, and cleaned all the fingerprints off the TV. I went into the twins' room and re-organized, clearing out clothes that were too small and moving everything into another dresser so it is better organized. I was able to get a bookcase out of their room and make more space, and I moved the shelf into the living room, which created more organization there. Waking up this morning to see sun and a sunny reflection on the kitchen floor, cleanliness, and order made me smile. It's going to be a great day.

I decided to try a shower before naptime, so I could get more done at naptime. The boys were happy, I took Drew into the bathroom and left the others in my room with cereal. thoroughly enjoyed the hot water, nothing could spoil my mood now! I was showering, the house was clean, and the kids were behaving. Life is great. Just as I was shampooing my hair, Emma came into the bathroom. "Mom, Grant is choking Ben, and he stole his cereal and spilled it and won't pick it up." OK, spilled cereal is no biggie. "Emma, is Grant still choking him?" "Yeah, and he won't let go." I suddenly had a mental image of Grant, laughing holding a knitting needle and with glee, bursting my happy bubble with one joyous movement. "OK, Emma, separate them please. Do whatever you have to, OK?" I quickly got the shampoo out of the area of my eyes and went out to check, still soapy and dripping. Ben was crying, but was no longer being manhandled by his brother. There was cereal everywhere, being ground into the carpet, and Ben's front was covered in cereal crumbs, a testament to his abuse. I separated the boys, threatened them properly, consoled Ben, and went to finish my shower. This great day has been downgraded to good, but it can be brought back up again.

I discovered last night that Drew has thrush. This is very common among babies, and it is a yeast infection in the mouth. Get this, it can cause fussiness while eating. So he may not be sensitive to dairy after all! Whoopie! I called the doctor this morning, thinking we were going to have to bring him in, but there are benefits to having four kids. I talked to the nurse for a while and she decided to just call in the prescription for me, and I would not have to go in. Hooray for that! Bringing four kids to the doctor's office did not sound like a whole lot of fun. At least bringing all the kids to Safeway to pick up the prescription involves big carts with the car in the front that have enough seat belts to strap everyone in. And, I found the ad from last week that had the Safeway coupon for a $30 gift certificate with a new prescription! Great day redeemed!

I'm not sure if anything can spoil my mood now. I am headed off to get ready and take the kids to Safeway. I will be the one with four kids and a big 'ole grin!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Attack of the Green-Nosed Monster

We are sick. I hate being sick.

I do not get sick very often, but when I do, I am miserable. I have sinus-nastiness - yes, that is the medical term - and Friday I felt like the pressure from my sinuses might get so great that it would push my teeth and they would shoot out of my mouth like shiny little projectiles. I am starting to feel a little better, now I can breathe out of my nose again (sometimes) and my head is no longer on danger of exploding. I usually get sick when I am pregnant or nursing, which means I can't take any lovely medicine that would make it all go away (or at least make me so loopy that I no longer care.) I would give almost anything right now for a shot of Ny-Quil and a nap.

Grant seems to have joined me in my misery, he is stuffy and whining a lot more than usual. He also wants to cuddle all the time, which would be nice if I were healthy, but I just want to curl up in a ball by myself for a while. Emma seems to avoid most illnesses that pass through our family, and is her normal loud talkative self. Drew is a little stuffy, but does not seem any different otherwise. Ben is the interesting one. Grant is an emotional child, and how he feels affects his behavior greatly. Ben is just happy-go-lucky all the time. I thought he had avoided everything until this morning, while he was happily playing he walked up to me and wanted my attention. (Poppa-skip this part!) He had green snot completely covering his upper lip and smeared across his cheek halfway to his ear. It was nasty. I cleaned him up and he went about his day. He seems completely fine, except for needing a nose wiping every so often. What a trooper!

I am hoping we are on the mend, and I am kicking myself for our trip to the mall last weekend. Since I was the first to get sick, I know I was the first to get it, and the only place I have been lately is the mall. I will have to be more careful to keep us contained and healthy for a little while longer. Drat, I wanted outta here!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Heroes Among Us

Last night we went to an even honoring Marty's next-door-neighbor when he was growing up. It is amazing how people can live among us, and we never really know their story. Joe Moser was an Air Force fighter pilot, and he was a prisoner of war during World War II and was held at Hitler's Buchenwald Concentration Camp.

Last week Joe was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, 60-some years after the mission for which he was honored. He wrote a book about his experiences, and last night was the book signing. We had Kelina come oer to watch the older kids, and Marty and I took Drew to the event. I told Emma we were going to see a real-life super-hero, and I would tell her all about it when we got home. I never want to sugar coat our nation's history for our kids, I think that does us a great disjustice. I do want to be careful about what we do reveal and at what age, so when we returned I showed her the book and we looked at some of the photographs inside. There is a map of where Joe's plane went down in France, and where he was sent in Germany. I told Emma about the pictures, about how his plane crashed, and he was captured by the enemy. I showed her the picture of Buchenwald and told her he was kept there for a long time. I showed her the pictures of the prisoners, emaciated and crammed in like sardines and told her Joe was not treated well and was not given enough to eat and almost died. I showed her the pictures of the crematoriums and told her that many, many men died there. And I showed her the pictures of Joe today, in his eighties and retired. I told her that he fought and almost died so that we could be free, and that many other men and women have fought and died for us, and still do today.

Emma was absolutely enthralled. I don't know if she really gets it that this is real and not just another story in a book, but she is mesmerized. First thing she said when she woke up this morning- "Mommy, will you show me the book and tell me the story of the plane crash and where the man got skinny?" So we went over it again. I have not yet read the book, but a bit of Joe's story is HERE in an article by CNN.

It is amazing that I have known of this man just as Joe Moser, Marty's childhood neighbor, but have never known what his life was like. I have been interested in the Holocaust since we learned about it in school, it is so hard to imagine what it must have been like in that time. Who else walks among us with stories to tell? I guess we all have stories to tell, but we never know what those stories are and where people come from. What wisdom lies in your next-door neighbor? Or the checker at the grocery store, your plumber or your furnace guy? Do we take the time to get to know these people who have so much wisdom, or are we so busy with our own lives that we don't bother?

I want to raise my kids to be interested in other people's lives, not just when it is convenient or easy. I truly believe we can learn so much from previous generations, their experiences are far different from our own. I am amazed at the heroism of Joe Moser and the many other super-heroes that make our country what it is today. It may sound silly and trite, but it is true, I am so incredibly proud to be an American. Thank you, Joe, for your amazing service. You are a hero!

Cheese, Glorious Cheese, How I Will Miss Thee

I am one of those mother that refuse to cook two meals at dinner. I have much better things to do with my time than try to arrange a meal that the kid will like and a meal that the adults will appreciate, and have them done at the same time to please everyone. This has worked well for us, our kids like Thai food and steak, and a lot of other things that kids usually turn their noses up at. They will try almost anything, which I love. This weekend Emma wanted to try the green leafy top of the pineapple. So I let her. I think she can sense when I think she will not like something, and she feels she has to prove me wrong. Her response to the pineapple leaf? "I like it mom! It's very tasty. I think I will save the rest for later though." And she threw it in the garbage. This is the girl who wants to eat a shark and a lobster, and at eighteen months liked dipping lemon slices in ranch dressing and applesauce and eating them.

Unfortunately, my desire to cook one meal for all of us is about to change. Drew is showing signs similar to Emma and Grant did as babies that tell me that me eating dairy is upsetting his tummy. While I was nursing Emma, I could not eat dairy or citrus. Grant could not handle dairy or garlic, and Ben could not handle citrus or onions. I am not sure what is upsetting Drew, but I am going to cut it all out for the next couple of weeks and slowly try things to see what he reacts to. I started Monday, since I wanted to gorge myself over Superbowl and have one last food hurrah before severely limiting my tasty options. I am having a hard time remembering, though, what did I eat while limited to no dairy, citrus (or acidic things like tomatoes,) garlic or onion? Tuesday I made a huge batch of Pad Thai, and had the leftovers yesterday. Last night I made nachos for the rest of the family, and ate plain chips with salsa and refried beans. Boring! Later I ate more Pad Thai, just to get some protein. I eat a lot of fruit, and do enjoy a good stir-fry (but without garlic and onions, it's kind of bland) but I am running out of ideas. I love dairy, and I tend to add it to everything. I am also getting into the whole remembering everything that has dairy in it, and trying to remember what else caused the kids to react. Coconut milk didn't sit well with one of the kids, but was it like dairy? Or did what we ate with the coconut milk have lime juice in it, and was that it? Can I make a rue with oil and have it taste similar to butter? And how did I get calcium during this whole thing?

I think this should be easier by now. I had to do this for six months each time prior, so I have been on this diet for a year. Was it so bad that I just blocked it out completely? Or did I actually eat only meat, potatoes and rice? Anyone have any recipies to share?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Making Lemons Into Lemonade

Melissa over at Full Circle decided to grace my blog with another award. I just love Melissa, first of all, because her blog is fabulous, and also because she keeps giving me these great awards! I can feel like a real award winning blogger and not have to tell everyone that all the awards are coming from the same person. Oops, I think I just blew that one. Oh, well, if you have not checked out Melissa's blog yet, go there. It is about her journey going from being an adopted child down the path to adopt a child (or two!) of her own.

Here are the rules for receiving the Lemonade Award:
1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 10 blogs which show great Attitude and/or Gratitude!
3. Link to your nominees within your post.
4. Let them know that they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
5. Share the love and link to this post to the person from whom you received your award.

I now nominate:
1. Angie at Bring The Rain. This is my newest blog obsession, one of the most raw examples of praising God through the hard times that I have ever read. I will post more about her story later, but if you have not read this blog yet, grab a tissue and head on over.
2. Aimee and Adam at Kayleigh's Story. I just love them!
3. Holly at SnowMommy
4. Amanda at Vintage Dutch Girl
5. Amy at Scheib Happenings
6. Tracie at Little Bearfoot Farm
7. Erin at Live, Laugh, Love
8. Amy at Love My Babes (wow, there are a lot of Amy's and Aimee's on this list today!)
9. Brenda at The Campbell Family
10. Tricia at Pure Chaos

Congratulations, ladies (and gentleman!)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Things I Have Learned Today:

1. Somewhere around here, Ben has found a magical place where he can secretly stash food and we will not know about it till he decides to bring it out again. Blueberries do not do well in a secret stash, and when Ben tries to bring them out, he does not like the feeling of rotten, smashed blueberry on his hands and he must show me, with big eyes and a surprised face, like "Mom! I cannot believe that my secret stash of food that you do not approve of does not stay good after who knows how long! Fix it!"

2. Furnaces have filters. When you neglect those filters your furnace does not work well at all. And you have a couple of rooms that are freezing, and a power bill that is over $300 for a month. If you clean those filters, they work a lot better, and you can actually heat your whole house.

3. The boys are getting old enough that when they are missing and quiet, it is not necessarily because they are getting in trouble. They might just be playing nicely in their room.

4. I know I will regret that last lesson.

5. Ben is now tall enough to reach the DVD player and VCR. He also thinks he can start his own movie by taking the DVD out of the case, shoving the DVD into the VCR, and trying to put the case in the DVD player by force.

6. There is a library owned movie behind the entertainment center. I have no idea how long it has been back there, and I cannot reach it. I am hoping that the money saved by cleaning the furnace will offset the library fine.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Excuses, Excuses

When we first looked at the house we live in now, we were impressed with the massive amount of storage on the property. For some reason, we thought that it would make up for the lack of storage in the house. Let me tell you, this house is LACKING storage space. Marty and I have a nice sized closet in our room (Not a walk in, but decent sized) and Emma has a basic closet in her room. There is a linen closet at the end of the hall. That is it. And I am not exaggerating, that is all there is. The boys' room was an office for the last occupants, so the closet was removed. We could re-do it, but honestly we need the wall space. (Right now Ben's crib is in the space that the closet would be.) There is no coat closet, no place to put a broom or vacuum, nothing. Being that we have crazy, destructive um, I mean, curious children, we cannot use things like bookshelves, as everything that would be within reach would be removed and scattered throughout the house.

As we do have a lot of outside storage, we don't have to worry about anything that needs long term storage. However, as we are too cheap, um frugal to heat our shop, we are careful about what we put out there because of moisture. And there is all the stuff that we need on a regular basis that needs to be inside and not potentially smelling musty and storage-ey. Add to that that nothing can be within toddler reach lest it be lost or flushed down the toilet, and the house tends to get cluttered very quickly.

The tops of things have been driving me nuts lately. It has been so busy around here that rather than finding homes for things, they have just been quickly put up out of reach. The tops of the entertainment center, the desk, the china hutch, the kitchen counters and cabinets have accumulated a lot of random things in the last couple of months, and once the surfaces are cluttered, it is hard to keep clutter from overtaking the rest of the house. Clutter breeds worse than dust bunnies, and our house has became a puppy mill of clutter.

Why am I telling you all this? There are a couple of reasons.

1. I have no shame. I could care less if there is someone out there who is reading this and thinking, "Oh my goodness, she had four kids in four years and she cannot keep her house clean? What a horrible mother! Tsk, tsk!" The reason I do not care is because anyone who is thinking that does not have four kids, and does not know what it is like. If they did have four kids, they would not have time to read this and then form a coherent thought afterwards, before being interrupted by screaming children who are fighting over who stole whose toy and then beat who over the head with it. The late great Dr. Seuss once said, "Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter, don't mind."

2. This is my lame-brain attempt to try and give a lame excuse why I did not blog all weekend. I did try, several times, but got distracted by screaming children who were fighting over who stole whose toy and then beat who over the head with it. I honestly think I started four posts, but did not get further than one sentence before having to get up and solve crisises. (Crisises? Crisies? Is is like mouse/mice, or octopus/octopi?)

Anywhoo, I spent the weekend painting and hanging shelves and cleaning the tops of things. Add to that yesterday's gorging of thousands of empty calories while watching the commercials, wait, I mean the Superbowl, and I had a good weekend. Oh, and I almost forgot, I got to go to the mall on Saturday, and I bought some new shoes! My first new pair in over two years, I am so excited. I love getting cash for Christmas.

So I had the most exciting weekend I have had in a long time. New shoes, new shelves, cleaning the house, and good food. Ah, this is the life! I feel so good, almost like I am floating on a raft in a pool in a tropical resort, with a cute waiter bringing me a fruity drink with an umbrella in it. Oh, wait, the kids are fighting again. Never mind!