Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat!!

I know that Cubby of course has a flair for dramatic arts, and lets face it, he has loved dress up from the very beginning(Two christmases ago he asked for fairy wings). So it comes as no surprise that Halloween ranks pretty highly in his book but, when I heard a little "Trick or Treat" at 4:30 this morning, I thought I would never make it through the day. Hearing him discover his Halloween costume and becoming enamored with it was more than a delight to my heart. Isn't that funny how even though you do something for all of your kids, in your heart you know the act speaks more to one of them than another. Cubby was delighted with his costume, and his excitement spread right over into everyone, especially Little Daddy. And I have to say, that his delight made the stress of handmaking three costumes worth it, and when the Halloween party kicked off, the buzz between the Oompa Loompa's was electric! (If you haven't seen the movie Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Johnny Depp, I'm telling you these costumes are spot on)

So, I can't speak for everyone, but the Halloween Bash in my opinion was a super blast!! Umm, bouncy house, jungle gym, gigi ball, story time and pinata plus 30 kids makes for a whole lot of fun, but mix in a table covered with sugary treats a driveway filled with bikes to ride on and a day of perfect fall weaher, and you have by far the best Halloween I've ever had. (Even if I did have to sing in front of all those adults!!)

Here is a little slide show of all the fun (little is not exactly accurate, it's pretty long), and some highlights for me personally.
Click to play Halloween 2008
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1. Watching Mr. encourage Little Daddy to color carefully in the "crafts" area.
2. Meeting all Cubby and Miss H's super cool school friends, and their moms.
3. A guest appearance by Miss Robyn and Miss Amanda
4. Handmade treats by the famous Traci which were Little Frankenstein Rice Krispy treats.
5. Having 16 count them SIXTEEN leftover Costco cupcakes to devour!
6. A graveyard Dirtcake that all the moms agreed tasted best on pretzels (and I was going to put out pita chips and hummus!!)
7. Being able to spot the Oompa Loompa's from space (thank you red vinyl pleather)
8. Knowing we have enough friends to fill up your backyard mid-morning on a Friday!!

So we rounded out the afternoon with a visit to Mr. Richard and Mrs. Pazel, because they are the closest thing to family we have in town. So I snapped a few pictures of these great friends.

Finally Mr. Headed off to "work" and there was a blissful hour and half of silence in the house, as all the children slept. Of course this time was punctuated by political messages via the phone approximately every thirty minutes.

Then the fun began again, as we redressed, and loaded up our crew for trick-or-treating. A fellow mom of twins arrived with her twin boys (age 3) and 6 week old son and the 10 of us headed out into the night. There were lots of treats, a few tantrums and a very funny turn of events when Mr. decided to take Cubby and Miss H into a neighborhood haunted house (they didn't like it). Little daddy had had enough about 30 minutes in, and at that point was content to stay in the stroller lounging. Not even the lure of more candy could budge him. He also expressed great displeasure at a "Big Bad Wolf" that came a little too close. To his credit he put his hand up and said "No!" emphatically and repeatedly, instead of crying.

So I loved this Halloween, don't get me wrong, we are exhausted, and I may be a little sore from pushing that stroller so far with Sleeping Beauty strapped to me, but it was a pleasure to share our house, and backyard with so many friends, and bump into so many not as often seen friends in the moonlit magic of Halloween. How delighted I am to have so many great families around us that are creative and positive, what a blessing to have such great influences around us and our children. On the way back from trick or treating as I schlepped Cubby and Little Daddy in the Joovy Caboose, With Sleeping Beauty snuggled up in the Bjorn, Cubby called out into the night, "This is the best day ever, I got to go trick or treating in my costume." Talk about melting a mother's heart. I am always surprised at how much love your mother's heart can contain, and how much bubbles over. How thankful I am to just share this day with them, and a what a special sort of blessing to have a child express in earshot his thankfulness. Of course we all know, "This is the day that the Lord has made," but I made the costume myself!!

After a single piece of candy, several Oompa Loompa songs (more video to be posted soon) and a little talk about what next year's costumes would be, the kids are safely tucked into bed, and we, I have to say, are not far behind.

Happy Halloween!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Special Shout Out

So, this is a special post for Gigi, Rosie, and Papa Mike. We made this little video, because we are starting to think it will be ages before we get to see you guys, and I want you to be able to appreciate each adorable moment!! We love and miss you!

Feels Like I’m Falling for Fall..

So there is nothing as fun, in my opinion as the start of a new season. Both Miss H and Cubby have been in LOVE with Fall this year. In general their interest in nature has peaked this season. Cubby calls out periodically, “Mom, it’s fall!!” as if he can’t believe his good fortune. The kind of wonder and gratitude for this “luckiest day” is inspiring to me, and as much as I can be dazed by this whirlwind we inhabit, I am delighted and sometimes reaffirmed by his knowledge that God has made each day just for him.

To jump into fall, we visited a pumpkin patch, and of course began decorating our pumpkins. You will notice that we have painted them (except for Cubby of course, who turned his into a pirate.) Also there are decidedly less pictures of Sleeping Beauty than the other children, because well, she doesn’t do much!! We were also lucky enough to see a real fire truck, complete with Firefighters! (October is fire safety month, which we seem to be doing a bang up job on.)

When all the pumpkins are finished, I'll line em up for a photo shoot, try to contain yourselves until them.

Sleeping Beauty Awakes..

So as I try to figure out all the technology that goes with blogging, I will try today to upload a few little movies. Here you should see little daddy, in his new PJ's giving Sleeping Beauty a sweet kiss. Honestly, this is his favorite activity with his baby sister. He also has the sweetest "Hi" and a wave each time he sees her eyes What a little charmer!!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Bathing Beauty

So we had a lively week, Conference meet, fire drill (see previous post) Soccer game, check-up at the doctor and finally a bath, and then of course a photo shoot. ENjoy!!

Click to play Bathing Beauty
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Somewhere to run to...

So on Thursday Sleeping Beauty was of course sleeping in her bed upstairs, and I was in the basement with Cubby, Little Daddy, Miss H and PJ. Of course it being Thursday, our "day off" the kids were all jamma-ed and barefoot. (Except PJ who of course arrives dressed). We were doing what we all do best, lounging and playing. Cubby was very excited to show me the "new drill" he had invented, which involved placing a nail over the drill bit of his home depot work bench (Sorry Lowes you know you are really my favorite). "Look Mommy, I can make smoke."

"What?" I said absent-mindedly as I thought about if a second cup of coffee would negatively affect Sleeping Beauty's beauty sleep. But then I looked, and I did see smoke, alot of smoke. As a matter of fact, the basement was filling with smoke.
Well, I calmly investigated, (this may not be exactly true). It was smoke, and it appeared to be coming out of the wall. I lined the children up at the door, and instructed the children to run to Mr. Richard's backdoor. "I have to get the baby." I said in my teacher voice. "Take your brother and PJ and go to Mr. Richard's house."
"Mom," Cubby said wide-eyed "Is our house on fire?" I don't know, (the honest truth, but I was thinking yes). The big ones grabbed the little ones (the big ones being of course barely four) ran to Mr. Richard's door, and were there before I emerged with Sleeping Beauty. The upstairs, by the way was filled with smoke. Why weren't those detectors going off!!
So we arrived, hearts apounding at my 87 year old neighbors house, and Mr. Richard greeted me warmly, with Mrs. Pazel right behind him. The house is filled with smoke I said, mid-panic. "Summer, didn't you get the notice." For a split second I honestly tried to remember anyone telling me my house would be burning down... "They're testing the sewer system." "What?" I thought, as he pointed to the harmless smoke billowing out of the manhole cover I had run by when fleeing my "burning house". "Did you think the house was on fire?" Umm yes, I said sheepishly.

So as Mr. Richard explained about how the smoke test worked and Mrs. Pazel secured a copy of the flourescent orange note the city had left on her door, my blood pressure and pulse returned to normal, and my heart was warmed.

Of course we passed a lovely morning, with Mrs. Pazel and I both remarking about how thankful we were for the smoke while Mr. Richard rocked Sleeping Beauty. What a gracious gift this unexpected visit was. Mrs. Pazel spoiled the children with sweets while the smoke cleared. I thought about how much I love my neighbors, and how grateful I am that they are older and wiser and welcome the circus that is my life into their backdoor. I also made a mental note that perhaps the next time we have a fire drill I will have the kids properly dressed.

All in all, an event to remember, and an interesting point to ponder. Cubby and Miss H who I have to remind to pick their toys up did safely evacuate themselves, their younger brother and PJ to the neighbors house. These children that ask a million questions and have a million excuses listened and obeyed when it mattered, how thankful I am to have these kids, and how blessed are we to have someone to run to, that welcomes us with open arms (and candy dishes).

Friday, October 10, 2008

Saturday's Child

Monday's child is fair of face,
Tuesday's child is full of grace,
Wednesday's child is full of woe,
Thursday's child has far to go.
Friday's child is loving and giving,
Saturday's child works hard for a living,
But the child born on the Sabbath Day,
Is fair and wise and good and gay.

OR So They SAY..

Thus far I have to say Sleeping Beauty does not seem to be working too hard, unless of course being adorable and completely adored is hard work, (She certainly makes it look effortless.) So as you may have guessed, she did finally make her way into the world, although not without a little coaxing on our part, and the delightful induction that was a miracle of modern medicine. After what can only be described as a Spa Day (with what the Mr. will tell you was the worst 25 minutes of my life as an intermission) the little miss arrived sporting the craziest 'do you ever saw!! This moment followed of course the Delivering doctor exclaiming, "It's a boy!" as a joke. I'm telling you the atmosphere in that delivery room was more like a ladies lunch than anything else (of course after the epidural was established.)

So after much reflection and prayers of thanks for yet another fantastic blessing heaped upon us by our Father in Heaven, we have it seems discovered what Sleeping Beauty was trying to teach us. Aside from a lesson in patience, (Which while probably needed was not very well received, see Mimi and Papa for more details, also see, Mr. also see Delivery Doctor, also see anyone who was within 25 feet of me the last month of pregnancy) we seem to have stumbled upon a little lesson in savoring.

I will be the first to say I may have over-scheduled us, signed us up for a few too many resposibilities and pretty much pushed our family at a breakneck pace... but Sleeping Beauty (and the sciactic relapse that followed her delivery) have caused us to slow down a little, and to try at least to focus on this special time. This is afterall the last one. I was thinking today as she nestled into me after a marathon nurse and let out a huge burp (seriously we don't get "delicate" around here in the ladies). This is the last time, to snuggle a sugar lump of our own, the last time to watch our older children grow in love and fondness for their new sibling, Saturday's Child it seems has her work cut out for her slowing down this family, but already she seems quite good at it, and I thought she was just lazy!!

Find out what day you were born on by clicking here!

I am a Tuesday if you can believe it, Miss H and Cubby Sunday, Little Daddy Monday and The Mr. a Wednesday.. my apologies in advance to all the Thursday's....

Thursday, October 2, 2008

And Now.. More Waiting

So I was not cleaning the house today, (thank you Mimi!) and was instead making headbands and hairclips for some neighborhood friends (there was also a picnic we went to). I had a little bit of time to think about the time preceding each addition to our family. Cubby and Miss H came on a Sunday, (bonny and blithe and good and gay according to the nursery rhyme) after four weeks of "bedrest". I had spent weeks watching every moment of Olympic coverage in the cool of our basement. I would sew (and smock) and watch TV and lounge all day. Saturday before they were born we put the car seats in the car, purchased a digital camera and rubbed my belly. Mike leaned in close and said, "Kids, daddy has made sub-plans and has lunch duty this week. This is a great time to come, we are ready for you." At 3am that night my water broke,
We called Mimi, Papa, Josh and Abby who were at the beach to say we were headed to the hospital, thinking it couldn't take that long to have a couple of babies.. (WRONG!!) But then they were here.

And obviously they were adorable. I felt like we had prepared, and invited them and they had listened. Clearly, an indication that we were going to be excellent parents, with obedient children who would never give us cause for concern. (Ahh.. new parents, so full of bravado!!)

With Little Daddy, I begged and pleaded him to come early, just a few days before your due date I would whisper, have Christmas with all of us together, with twin two year-olds, I really didn't want to be rushing off to the hospital on Christmas Day. I also loathed the idea of having to spend Christmas in the hospital (not to mention imposing on one of my friends on Christmas to watch our kids). The time leading up to his debut was busy, we were coaching indoor track and we had Miss H and Cubby to distract us (not to mention the preschool I was teaching). Sure enough Christmas morning the contractions that had started and stopped so many times in the days prior didn't stop, and there we were relying on wonderful friends who would welcome our twins into their home on Christmas morning. The weeks were so busy, before he arrived, I can't remember being so pregnant (or have I blocked out that waddle?) I remember the excitement and the anticipation, but not the discomfort.

And so now we await baby Rachel (whose blogger name I can't even fathom because I don't know her yet) and my impatience to hold her and know her (along with the kink she has put in my spine) makes me grouchy and a little "unhappy" (read slightly short-tempered and loud). What is she waiting for I keep wondering, what have I left undone? She's not waiting for her "outfit" I finished it when she didn't come on Tuesday. What is it that she is trying to teach us I keep asking myself? Each arrival has taught us something different. Cubby and Miss H gave us the confidence to be parents, the illustration of a divine call to parenthood. Little Daddy gave us the gift of understanding the meaning of friendship based on Godly principles. It is not every friend you can call Christmas morning to take your two two year olds!! What gift will this new baby bring? What blessing have we left unnoticed that she will call attention to? Is she really waiting for me to finish writing the pole-vault pit grants?

She is now officially "overdue". (You should have seen the looks I got walking around the cross country course yesterday with my stopwatch!) Will I be waiting on this girl forever? (I'm told she'll come out eventually) but what I'm anxious about is, Is this a portent of things to come, is this one who will try our resolve, and have her own plan always? Is this the one that will truly stretch me into "Motherhood".

I know my Gramma will say, "She's waiting for my birthday" Oct 7th. and while the idea is fantastic, umm isn't the 3rd close enough?

Happy Birthday Gramma, here's hoping your present comes early!!