January 31, 2010

Sunday, a day of rest....HA!

Every Sunday, I think it will be different.

Every Sunday, I think, they know the drill. Today they'll be so good.

Every Sunday, I'm wrong.

Sure some Sundays are better than others.  But lately, eh, not so much.

Joseph has a VERY hard time with transition. So the transition from his nursery class to his primary class has been, well, less than ideal.

It never ceases to amaze me just how long a screaming child can hold out! I find crying to be exhausting. How do they manage to survive the day after a temper tantrum that rivals a hurricane?

Well, needless to say his screaming was very distracting. I took him out of class, down the hall, and to the breezeway between the outer and inner church doors. And I let him scream it out. For a very. long. time.

During that time a number of elderly men and women passed through those doors. Not a single one passed without smiling or chuckling and commenting on their days of been there's and done that's. Some told stories, some offered advise.

One lady offered the following story:

When one of my girls was about 2 years old, she would NOT stay in her bed. She would just keep coming out all night long. Finally, one night, I grabbed her but the front neck of her sleeper and hauled her off her feet. Somehow, her head managed to collide with my nose. I broke my own nose.

Okay... never grab a child by their pajamas and bring them up to my face. Check.

I felt grateful that none of them looked at me like I was an evil parent, or a bad mother. They all seemed to understand.

Finally, Joseph calmed down. We gave each other hugs and exchanged I love you's. I took him back to class where I sat with his for a while. He was perfectly calm but he snuggled up to me. After a few minitues, he seemed to be okay so I left.

I watched him though the little window on the door for another minute. He face was expressionless, his cheeks we bright red.

And. I. Felt. Like. Crap.  (pardon my language)

I love that kid but man alive, he can sure be stubborn!

After church wasn't another better. The boys were at it all day. The girls weren't much better.


I've decided to blame it on the snow.

Being a parent is one of the most rewarding and the most doggone stinking hard thing I've ever done.

So tonight, I'm going to chant to myself as I fall asleep, "I'm not a bad mom, I'm not a bad mom." So tomorrow I'll believe it and start over.


                                                  

January 29, 2010

Picture of the Day Challenge

In any given day, I come across a million and one things that scream, "I'm a mother of 4 little kids!" Too often, I get frustrated and upset. Or I just miss the fun of it altogether.

Lately I've been trying to take a moment to stop and enjoy, smile, or laugh at those million and one things. Its funny how suddenly I notice and enjoy things more.

Today, this is my picture of the day. It just made me smile. I had seen Jacob playing in here earlier but didn't think much of it until later when I opened it up to get out a pan. 

It might not mean much to you, but to me, well, this is who I am. This is my life. And I love it.


So I'm trying an experiment. Or a challenge really.

Look around you, find something that speaks who you are. It doesn't have to be a big deal, I mean, look at my picture for heaven sake! I try not to choose pictures of people, that's too easy. Rather, pictures that represent my life, in some small way.

Post it on your blog with a little blurb about why you chose your picture then come back and add your link below. I am truly curious as to what pictures people will choose! I can't wait to see! I hope you all do it!

I've set up a McLinky so all you have to do is add the link to the blog post with your picture. If you don't have a blog, just leave a comment and tell me about something you saw that made you stop and smile.

I'm so excited! But I have to say, if no one links, I think I just might potentially feel stupid.

It's open for the week! Ready, set, go!
                                                


When there's destruction... I mean, love at home.

We drove the hours down to Primary Children's and waited our turn to see the surgeon for Alayna's post op check-up.


He sat down, ran his hand around her head, asked two questions and announced, "She looks great! See you in September!" He also said that he'd like to see her about every 2 years until she turns five. I got all concerned and asked, why? Was there a chance something could go wrong in that time? His reply, "No, I just like to see their heads grow."

Oh. Umm... okay. Can't I just send photos? Its kind of a long drive. Oh well, at least she looks awesome. Nothing is wrong.

Feeling thankful.

We left the hospital and started to make our was to BYU campus so Luke could talk engineering (zzzzzzz..... snort, huh?) and take care of thesis stuff.

But not long after we headed out, Alayna suddenly looked really... tired. Almost sad. I was starting to get worried. I recognized that face... but from where? I just couldn't quite put my finger on it.


Without further warning, the geyser exploded and out came her 6oz bottle of milk, and her yogurt, and her cheese. Nothing like half digested dairy to make the car smell just peachy.

Now I know why that face looked familiar. All of our kids seem to be prone to car sickness. Stink, literally.

So Luke's on the phone with his professor learning that the engineering building on campus had an accident and it is closed for the weekend and all the professors and staff went home, (Some guy hit a transformer, started a fire and a gas leak. At least now I know where Optimus Prime sleeps.) I'm turned around in my seat, bum pointed at the front window trying to contain the fountain of foul, (poor oncoming traffic drivers, probably wondering what that big blob in the front window was) yelling at Luke to pull over, while we're driving through the middle of Salt Lake. After cutting off a driver and jumping a curb, we stopped, pulled out Alayna, which was not an easy feat since we had to wipe up all the goop so we could find the buckles, and we did our best to clean up the mess.


At least I had brought a spare outfit. But it didn't change the fact we all stunk.

We made it to Provo without further incident. In the end, Luke didn't get a chance to take care of anything and we drove home.

Alayna was so good and patient on the long drive. She is just too sweet. 

 On that note, I would just like to say that after Savannah spent hours and hours building this little "house", all of her loving, thoughtful siblings in a combined effort destroyed it in less than minute.

And she desolved into a puddle of hysterical tears.

"Love at home."  That's our motto. We aim to please.
                                                

January 28, 2010

Serious questions at hand!

We are off to the adventurous land of Utah, to the frightening realm of Salt Lake for Alayna's 6 month post surgery check-up. After that, we venture forth to penetrate Utah's most prized bubble, Provo. Luke gets to talk engineering (zzzzzzzzzz.... snort, huh?) while I romp around BYU campus and try to scare some freshman. And maybe meet up with some old buddies too.

In the meantime, I have a VERY important question for you. Or two.




Do you like black olives?

If so, how do you like to eat them?

I like them on my pinky finger, unless etiquette dictates otherwise.

Jacob, he likes them off Alayna's finger.

Gross.
                                                 

January 27, 2010

Fridge-mater

Me: Jacob, can you please untie the refrigerator?

Jacob: No mommy, I dan't undie the fwidge-mater.

Me: Yes you can!

No I dan't!

Yes you can!

No I dan't!

Jacob, please untie the doors! You are ruining my measuring tape!

No I dan't you silly mommy I said! The fwidge-mater is stuck!

(grunt, grunt, silence......)

Wook mommy! The fwidge-mater wripped your measure tape!

Uh huh, sure.



Excuse the hand and finger prints. 'Tis the life of a stainless steel fridge in a house with three toddlers and a baby.

So I won't apologize for them.
    
                                                      Love,
                                                 

January 26, 2010

Sleep, why hast thou abandoned me?

I am cruelly yanked from my slumber by the sound of croup cough right in my face.

"Mom! Mom, I need to go potty!"

Groaning I look over at the clock. Had it really only been a hour since I had gone to bed? Darn those "24" episodes and curse Jack Bower.

I roll out of bed and stagger to the bathroom, managing to whack my head only a couple times against the wall along the way.

Upon seeing Joseph back to bed, I slowly make my way though the dark with outstretched hands to avoid any more confrontation with the walls and back to bed.

A couple hours later, a wake to the rustle of a pull-up as Joseph saunters back into the room. Taking pity on him since he is sick, I say nothing as he climbs into bed next to Luke. At least he knows better than to risk his life by climbing in next to me.

After a while, I groggily recall Luke shifting and soon Joseph is in the middle between us.

The next few hours were pure torture. After getting kicked repeatedly in all areas between my neck and my belly button, feeling the boy roll back and forth between Luke and myself, having him cough in my face and ear, and waking to find a pull-up covered bum inches from my nose, I could feel myself transforming into a troll.

I think Luke had about had it too. I finally sat up and declared that Joseph needed to go to him own bed.

"But mom, I need to go potty!"


No wonder he had been jumping up and down for the last hour. Fine. Potty, bed, sleep.

Soon Alayna was wailing for a bottle. Fine. Lights, bottle, sleep.

About an hour later the alarm starts blaring. I feel pretty sure I was either going to have to throw it out the window or my head was going to explode. But I needed to get Savannah ready for school and had no time to do either.

And now, here I sit at my computer wondering how I can feel like I was just trampled by Ben Hur's chariot while Joseph looks like this.



I know life's not fair but I find this just downright cruel.

And let's just keep Jack out of this, okay.

Do you think its against fire code for a mom to fall asleep during the day?

Probably. Darn it. And I don't even have any chocolate. Double darn it.


                                   

January 25, 2010

Alayna's One Year Old Interview

Hi! I'm Alayna. But you can call me Layna for short.

Yesterday was my birthday and so Channel4Monkeys begged for an interview. I wasn't really in the mood. I was tired. I wanted my bottle. My cheek hurt from a recent fall I had during my battle with two left feet.

Still, I decided to be kind and give the interview. But I didn't humor them. They could take my picture all they wanted but I was in no mood to give them my world famous smile.

They could just deal with it.



Okay, here we go. I was probably one of the cutest babies ever born. I was so cute in fact, that I made my mom completely baby hungry for more cute babies just like me! Still do in fact.

I was my moms only natural birth, which she swears she will never do again! She describes it in great detail here and here. (read at your own risk!)

I am also famously known for having the only brown eyes out of the 21 grandkids on my dad's side. Pretty cool huh!



When I was 6 months old I was told I had Sagittal Craniosynostosis, which in a nut shell means that the top plates in my head had prematurely fused together. So, at 7 months old I had major surgery.

(I know, I sound so grown up and knowledgeable about all these things! I'm a very alert baby.)

But being as great and cute as I am, I handled things so very well and recovered quickly. This was back in September.



And so here I sit, glaring down my adoring fans as they try to snap a few shots of me.



This is my birthday cake. Try not to think less of my mom. She means well but she generally has no idea what she's doing. But I THINK it's suppose to be a butterfly.




My cooky Uncle Abe came down just to see me and eat some of my cake. He even dragged a buddy along, poor kid. But Abe's running the camera here so sorry if you get a little motion sickness.

(sigh) And my mom is using her high, squeeky, 'I'm talking to little kids' voice again. She sounds so weird.

Can you believe they ACTUALLY thought I would blow out my candle? How old do they think I am anyway?

video



I'm super smart. I know how to tear things apart but I also like to put things back and will concentrate very hard to do so. I fold my arms for prayer and tackle other babies twice my size. I'm learning to dislike vegetables but I really like to suck on shoes.   
                                   
And there you have it. Story of my life in a nut shell. Now excuse me while I finish my cake.

Yours ever,
Princess Alayna

P.S. For an autographed photo, or to make a donation of intrinsic or cocoa value, please contact Channel4Monkeys.



January 23, 2010

Picture of the Day



 I walked into my bedroom and something on the bed caught my eye.

Jacob had been in here.

I could tell.

Luke's shoes aren't considered special though.

I found a couple toys in my boot too.

My toe is still reminding me.

                                                     

Just barely overheard

Luke: Joseph, what are you wiping all over the carpet?

Joseph: Boogers.

Luke in a now horrified voice: What!?

Joseph: Boogers!

Luke: You better NOT be!

Joseph: Haha, but I am!

Luke: Disgusting.

Boys are just so much fun sometimes, aren't they?

                       

January 22, 2010

Yup, things change THAT fast

If I have to wash Jacob's sheets ONE MORE time this week, I'm going to start buying that boy Depends to sleep in!! There is just something wrong in having to wash a kid's sheets every single day!

I know, I know. Yesterday was such a cute post. Well, Wednesday WAS cute! Yesterday, not so much.

Savannah sounds like she has croup, Jacob and Alayna both have very raw bums, Alayna too has a cough and a never ending runny nose, while Joseph, my natural antagonist, is totally fine and just goes around picking on all of them.

Ya, yesterday was not the best day. You know what kids do when they are feeling well, right? They are sad, cranky, whiny, and just want to be held ALL day. I think my eye was twitching when Luke came home LATE from work last night.

Okay, okay, enough of that. I actually DO have something funny to write about today.

Please take a moment to admire the following picture.



This was Savannah on Wednesday as she was getting home from school. Tasting the snowflakes, so cute. Well, you see that plastic sack in her hand? Um, that is what this story is about.

If you need to catch up on Savannah's "love" life, click here and read the last story.

So on the way to the bus stop that morning, Savannah suddenly gasps and looks very sad as she exclaimed, "Oh no! I forgot Seth's phone number!"

I was shocked enough to think my 5-year old daughter was trying to get phone numbers! So I asked her why she wanted Seth's phone number. She replied, "So I know where he lives!"

Somewhat relieved that she wasn't going to be asking for a cell phone anytime soon, I explained that phone numbers are for calling people, which she doesn't need to be worrying about doing right now, and someone's address tells you where they live.

"Oh".

And now, the story of the plastic sack.

I happened to have my camera in hand as I was watching Savannah get off the bus and was able to snap that picture of her tasting snowflakes. Then she walks into the house and somewhat dreamily says holding up the sack, "Seth didn't want this."

The handles were tied together in a knot and the sack had obviously been ripped open. So I asked her why she had it.

Again she said, "Seth didn't want it. So he gave it to me." She seemed quite happy about it.

I've never met the kid but if she comes home with any more of his garbage....

I was never interested in boys at that age. Please tell me its just a phase and she won't be interested in boys until she's 18! Especially not ones that give her their garbage! PLEASE!
  
                                          

January 21, 2010

You can call me crazy if you want,

but on snowy days like yesterday,



it's nice to have a few extra sweets in the pantry.



And cheese. Lots of it.



And when playing indoor sports,



you had better hope the cheerleaders are rooting for you.



So call me crazy if you want (and I have been, several times),



but just think how boring a snowy day would be,



without all these around to make my day



just a little bit warmer.

                                                    

January 20, 2010

Keeping it Real

Generally speaking, when I do laundry I like to fold it right out of the dryer. I mean like, as soon as its done I open the dryer door and stand right there and fold everything into little piles on the washer to be put straight away. It also gets me out of a whole lot of ironing.

Except whites. I loathe folding whites.

Sometimes however, whether I just don't feel like it, or I'm in a hurry, or something else requires my immediate attention, I confess, I will just throw everything into a pile in the hallway so I can switch the clothes over from the washer.

And sometimes its sits there for a while.

Yesterday... well, yesterday I had a lot of laundry to do. Folding just wasn't in my agenda so after about five or six full loads, my hallway didn't look much like a hallway.



You will be relieved to know that I did indeed fold all this last night before bed. Well... almost all of it. The whites are in a basket sitting on my bed, impatiently waiting to be folded.

I'm secretly hoping that a hundred people say that they too have done something like this so that my humiliation isn't in vain. But I'd settle for just one.

Of course, I would never admit that out loud let alone in writing!

I am, however, feeling deeply grateful for my washer and dryer.  There was many a day when I had to use up six washers at the laundry mat back when we were in a two bedroom apartment at college with three kids.

I would load up the wagon and the stroller. Sometimes my dirty laundry would topple over on the way down, sometimes my clean laundry would topple over on the way back up, and sometimes (though rare) a fellow apartment dweller would take extreme pity on me and would help me balance my many baskets and garbage bags down the hill.

Those people have a place prepared for them in heaven.

                                                        

January 19, 2010

You can call me Superfastcatlikereflexwoman

Or just Superwoman for short.

See, there are a few things I am slowing learning as a mother. For instance, feeding your kids taco soup for dinner has morning mayhem aftermath.

I'll just let you use your imagination for that.

So, thanks to taco soup, Alayna needed a bath when she woke up. Fine, done. Savannah's off to school. Things are good.

Then the boys wake up.

Jacob too had the consequences from eating taco soup and he too needed a bath.

It's amazing how the sound of running water seems to have a magical effect on my kids. They all come running, eager to get in. Alayna too.

Joseph leaped into the bathtub first. Alayna toddles in and starts reaching for the water toys. I have Jacob laying on the rug, cleaning him up before he too jumps into the water, taco soup and all.

As I was wiping his bum, my super-mega-mommy vision caught sight of Alayna's little feet lift up off the ground as she tried to reach deep into the tub in an effort to retrieve a toy.

In a flash, my cat-like relexes kicked in as I reached out and grabbed her by the shirt and heaved her back to solid ground. But not before she managed to get a feel of the water.

  



It didn't even phase her. In a matter of seconds she was back at it.



And I stood ready with my Superfast-catlike-reflexes just in case she decided to take up diving again.

That's one Superwoman point for me today!

And I didn't even have to wear red tights to do it. But I'm thinking a cape would be pretty cool next time, don't you?

                                                            

January 18, 2010

And the WINNER is....

Okay, before I tell you who won, I just want to apologize for the delay in posting this. Would you believe my internet went down just after noon and has just barely come back up!

Its true!!

But I had a blast doing this! I hope more people ask me to give away their stuff! I wish, wish, wish I had more stuff to giveaway so there would be more winners! (because I NEVER win)

ANYWAY, using random.org to generate a random number for me, the winner is comment #43!

The Tanners said...

Oh serene! i love reading about your life! um, probably the blocks. Since we have a one year old he would most like those... though i secretly want the fondue thing.


So just send me an email at serenebooks@gmail.com with your name, mailing address and specifying again exactly which item you want!

Thanks so much for participating everyone!!!

                                                         

January 17, 2010

Feeling Thankful: NOT what you think

I'm just going to say that whatever you THINK this post is going to be about, well it's simply, not.

Setting the Scene:

Today for church, I wore a stretchy black, just longer than knee length skirt, a shirt and open toe heels. No buttons, zippers, or ties, just an easy to slip on black stretchy skirt.

The Story:

Alayna needed a diaper change so I took her to the mother's lounge where upon entering, I find two friends, one is feeding her baby, and the other is using the changing table.

As I stood there waiting my turn for the changing table, I set Alayna down. She is after all getting fairly heavy. Of course, she is now walking, but still quite unsteady.

Suddenly, as Alayna started to wobble, she grabbed hold of the bottom of the skirt in an attempt to steady herself but instead, she proceeded to topple to the floor, taking my skirt down with her.

I suppose I would have been okay as one girl was checking on her nursing baby and the other was occupied with her own diaper changing duties. Unfortunately, the sheer shock of suddenly bearing all allowed for a cry of dismay to escape my lips as I dove down to retrieve my coverings. This cry naturally turned the heads of the other two ladies in the small room.

Ah hem, awkward.

So today, I am feeling thankful:

-that this didn't happen in a room with men
-that for no reason, I happen to shave my legs with a little more care than usual
-that there was only minimal collateral damage and only two people will suffer from the everlasting side effects of seeing something terribly frightening

On that note, I hope you having a fabulous Sunday!

Me? I'm going to go think of a way to change my identity and alter my appearance.
                                                   

January 15, 2010

Picture of the Day

This is a diaper.



Why is the picture important to me?

1. My hubby ALWAYS, ALWAYS gives me a hard time for leaving wet diapers laying around.
(and I do admit it's a little embarrassing when people come over unannounced and I have to quickly push aside a couple diapers that are just laying around on the floor. But when two kids are jumping on me while I'm changing one and they're demanding things, I confess that sometimes I forget to throw the diaper in the trash. Unless its stinky. Then its hard to forget.)

2. This is Alayna's diaper.

3. I know I didn't put it there.

4. I did not NOT change Alayna this morning, Luke did.

Conclusion: Luke left it there.

That's why this picture is important to me.

And it made me laugh.

I mean, who leaves a diaper on a bed post? Haha, awesome.

                                                      
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