Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye 2007!

I would like to be able to tell you that in the past year I...

*Fit in size 10 jeans
*Got in shape
*Wore my cool boots
*Cleaned my garage
*Painted my guest room
*Traveled to an exotic island
*Grew more knowledgeable about worldly events

Instead, I have to tell you that in the past year I...

*Am far from size 10
*Have begun watching what I eat and working out, but not as diligently as I should
*Tried my cool boots on a few days ago and decided I am not cool enough to wear them anymore
*My garage is messier than ever
*My guest room is still unpainted
*Traveled to California
*Grew more knowledgeable about the Food Network

However, in the past year I also...

*Have lost 40 lbs
*Became closer to many friends and family members through this blog
*Learned how to scrapbook digitally
*Grew more tolerable and patient with immature behavior
*Have discovered just how wonderful my family and friends are and have seen how much better my own life has become because of them
*Have rediscovered what a fantastic man I have married
*Have thought about how blessed I am to have these four guys in my life

In the next year, I am hoping to...

*Become a more patient mother
*Make room in my life to become more helpful to others
*Potty train the boys
*Lose a lot more weight
*Clean my garage
*Get my house in (long term) order
*Be a better wife/mother/daughter/sister/friend to those I love

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas 2007

What a wonderful couple days it has been! My parents had a party on Christmas Eve with old friends and family. The boys were pretty well behaved, playing mostly with Mallory and they had even gotten to open a few gifts. It was really a great night, it is always so nice to catch up with people we don't get to see as often as we'd like.

This morning we met Jessica, Brent and Reagan for breakfast at a nearby buffet. Since none of the kids really get Christmas this year, they had no idea about the rush to open the gifts and we had a nice and leisurely breakfast. After that, we took the boys to my parents' house to open gifts over there with Leigha.

All three of the boys really enjoyed opening their gifts. They played with each gift as it was unwrapped and then we would gently nudge them towards other packages that were waiting to be opened. They got cool little remote control cars, lots of great books and all sorts of boy things (tractors, balls, CAT trucks). After opening most of the gifts and eating lunch, it was nap time and time to go home.

While the boys peacefully slept, Don and I started making our ham and yams. Both recipes we got from the food network and were delicious! There was tons of food left over, I am sure it will last us at least until the week's end. After dinner the boys opened a couple gifts they had left unopened at my mom's house and played with them for a bit. Eventually the day caught up with them and they started getting tired and a bit cranky. We drove home the long way, passing by a few beautifully decorated houses all lit up with Christmas lights.

Ironically, we still have the boys unopened gifts under our tree downstairs. The boys think nothing of them, and haven't even reached over to open any of them yet. Jaxon loves the Muppet version of the 12 Days of Christmas, and I hope I never forget to way he laughs at it all or tries to imitate the little "me, meme, meme" on the ninth day. Or the way Wyatt would thoroughly take every piece of paper off the presents before he would enjoy what was inside. Or Lucas hoarding the gifts of his choice, while handing his brothers the things he didn't love as much.

It was just as great as I hoped it would be and it was truly the Christmas I dreamed of all those years we were wishing for a family of our own. A Very Merry Christmas, indeed.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

My 3 Wise Men

We ready for Christmas! Gifts are wrapped and packages have been sent out, cards are long gone and it is nice and crisp out side. Since their birthdays were over 6 months ago, the boys have no recollection of things being inside of the wrapped presents. Nothing has been opened or disturbed, yet. They still love when we drive around and look at Christmas lights.

We are still thinking about potty training. Luke and Jax sometimes tell us when they need to go, but we are not really making an effort yet. Lucas and Jaxon have even pooped on the potty, but Wyatt has no luck even peeing there. It is not for lack of trying. The kid will sit on the pot for 10 minutes reading his little Archie books, with no results. No rush or pressure though. We feel like we are on the right track, just slowly.

Wyatt fell down the stairs at my mom's the other day. Luckily he wasn't hurt at all. No bumps or bruises. I think he was just the right size where he just rolled like a little hot dog instead of going the more painful route of tumbling head over heels. Don and I were more bothered by it than him, which is a good thing in my book. Wyatt loves being my little helper, whether helping me unload the dishwasher or handing me the clothes that are in the dryer. He tells me which colors the clothes are and who they belong to.

Jaxon is crazy. This kid laughs like a little maniac at nothing in particular. Something as simple as saying "h-h" has him cackling in the backseat. He is my little lovey lately, his arms spread open wide and asking for a "hug". Jaxon loves to give kisses and he will actually grunt with the effort of giving us a big hug. He is a wonderful little person with such a big heart.

Lucas is a busy boy. He has started growing very fond of his "Pops" (my dad) and loves to show off for him. Lucas seems to be the man with a plan -always on the go, knowing what he wants and where to get it. "Come on" has been his phrase of choice. He uses it when a slow car is in front of us, "Come on, car", or when he is trying to get his brothers to come down the stairs with him "come on, Gee-ax". When we get their clothes out for the day, we have realized it is wise to ask Lucas first. He definitely has an opinion about what color he wants to wear.

They all love to play Ring around the Rosie. All of them sing Jingle Bells and freeze if they even think they hear a jingle jangling. Their little minds are working so fast and they are using many different phrases. If we ask them a question, they are still answering it by repeating the question, instead of an answer. They all do it at the same time, so we get a triplicate echo of ourselves.

I can't wait to see their excitement once they realize there are things inside the wrapping under the tree!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Eating Out

Since the boys have been little, we have tried to get out of the house on weekends. This running around and being out of the house ends up with us eating at a restaurant a couple times a week. Usually we would pick a place with a patio or back room for seating. We had three babies and didn't want to disturb people eating -or worse yet, have them disturb us while we were trying to take care of the boys. Slowly but surely, the boys have shed their bibs and chairs at the restaurants and have become well mannered little people.

Last night we took the boys to Kings Fish house for dinner. It is the first time we have taken the boys there, Don and I have been there on "date nights" though. The last time we were there, the pile of highchairs made us think to bring the boys. They have fantastic child menus. Pages of coloring, tattoos, 5 crayons each -not to mention the cups they serve the kids meals in. Good sippy cups with tops that snap on and bendy straws that change color when the cold drink goes up. All little things, I know. They added up to a dinner where the kids were absolutely the best they have ever been.

The boys love when Don and I share our salads with them. Usually we just take turns giving forkfuls to everyone, but yesterday I just placed the salad on their plates and they ate it with their little red plastic fish fork. Jaxon (loudly) thanked the server anytime she was at the table, and they all loved the popcorn shrimp. All three ask for and use their napkins -and if they spill any water, they will grab their napkins to clean it up.

We were really proud of them and are very impressed with how well they eat when we are out. However, Don did tell me that the other night while I was at my MOM meeting, Wyatt was trying to put his macaroni and cheese noodles up his nose. Thankfully he was laughing so hard, he wasn't successful. I guess it is a work in progress.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Gift of Lights

I forgot to note that Wednesday night Nana treated us to the Gift of Lights. It is where you stay in your car and drive by/through hundreds of light displays. The boys absolutely loved it and I don't remember hearing anything but delighted gasps and hushed wows the whole way through.
Even though it was about 15 minutes long, the boys were still asking for more when we drove out, only to be pacified by hearing we would see lights and Baby Jesus at home.

Tonight, Leigha and her boyfriend TJ took us to The Magical Forest. The night air was cold, but it barely seemed to bother the boys. They love any excuse to wear their little gloves. We walked all the way through the enchanted forest of what seemed like hundreds of decorated trees and little buildings where elves, bears and snowmen were busy inside.

After all that walking (and maze running!) the boys gobbled down on the three funnel cakes we bought. They watched the train go around the track a few more times and played in the police car by the exit before we packed in for the night. The ride home was loud with all three trying to top each other as Wyatt sang the ABC's, Jaxon counted and Lucas was singing "we will rock you". Finally we got home, let them run off the sugar high, and put them to bed. Expecting them to be giggling for quite a while, we were surprised not to hear a single peep out of them once their door was closed.

They must have had visions of funnel cakes dancing in their heads :)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

So much to do

The past few days I have been out of commission with a bit of vertigo. Luckily I had some meds left over from last time (Feb of 2006) and although they are expired, the pharmacist said they would still work, but just be less effective. But she understood my plight of being at home with three two year olds and gave me her blessing to take my left overs. Everything seems much better now, although it is definitely not gone. YUCK.

Last night we went out to run some errands. Necessities like milk, eggs, diapers and wipes were getting low. Since it was almost dinner time, we stopped at Macaroni Grill to eat. The boys did awesome! People kept coming by to tell us how well behaved they were. One even confessed that her son (who looked to be about 13) said they would have to hurry and eat to get out of there when he saw them setting up a table with three high chairs right across from their booth. But the boys impressed them and they were pleased. I remember those days of wanting to sit in the "quiet" sections of restaurants, so the whole thing cracked me up a bit.

A few random things...
There was a woman dressed in a scantily clad Santa outfit singing Christmas carols in an opera like voice. When she walked by Jaxon said "ho, ho!" (how he says Santa).

As I mentioned last week, we have a nativity scene in front of our house, complete with Baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Last night at the restaurant a baby started crying. One of the boys gasp, "baby. Bee-bee Jee-bee" (Baby Jesus)

Luke loves to tell people to "come on." "Come-on, Je-ax", "come-on truck", "come-on Dad-doo". His words are coming out pretty clear and concise. We don't usually have to try to figure out what he is saying.

When they had ice cream last night, they all did a fantastic job of being fairly neat. All three barely needed any help from Don and I with their gigantic spoons and very big helping of ice cream.

After dinner, we went over to Costco to get the things we needed. We let all three walk with the shopping cart and they did a pretty good job. They want to touch everything and open every door in the freezer aisle (x three!), so it really slows us down. We are trying to put a stop to that by putting them back in the cart when they stray too far. Lately their time outs have been until they count to ten, so their counting has improved immensely.

Hopefully my balance will get back to normal soon. I keep saying I will go to the Dr to get the vertigo checked out but using precious nap time for anything other than resting of some sort does not appeal to me. Maybe I can even get our Christmas cards done today!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Congratulations Annie

Today is the very last day of school for my cousin Annie who has worked so hard to get her masters degree.

Good job Annie, we are SO proud of you!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Can't catch me

The ginger bread house box has been taunting the children since they first laid eyes on it. All that pretty candy just waiting for their little fingers. I have kept it on the stairs so it would be out of their reach, until tonight.

Don and I decided this would be the night our ginger bread house would be built. The boys' eyes got so big as we emptied to contents out on the table. They loved "helping" Don knead the icing so we could glue the walls together. All their help nearly drove us insane and we were thankful for the fifteen minute break required to let the walls set into place.

After much wrestling (which began with Lucas trying to pull Jaxon down by hugging him) the timer went off. Don and I tried to sneak into the kitchen and get as much done as we could before the boys noticed - but they found us. All attempts to keep their hands from grabbing at the candy were futile, so we caved in and let them put the candy on the roof. And in their mouth.

Eventually the house was finished and the gingerbread men were either fully eaten or laying on the table decapitated. After a little bit more time letting the house settle (aka getting ticked off the kids just wouldn't let Don and I make a pretty house so we called it quits) we bribed the boys (with the forbidden candy) to sit nicely for a picture with the ginger bread house.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Big Boy Closet

Since the boys have come home from the hospital, we have had our downstairs coat closet made into their clothes closet. It made more sense to keep their clothes on the same floor as the washing machine as well as just easier to dress them all when we were downstairs.

Since we unpacked our winter clothes ( a couple weeks ago), the combined clutter of thicker clothing and bigger sizes made me realize they needed their real closet. Yesterday Don took the boys out to Walmart while I switched the closets out.

All their "to grow into" clothes that were taking up much needed space in their closet and dresser, were moved to a plastic storage container (except for a few warmer weather items). Then the now empty drawers were used for day to day clothes. Pj's are kept in a container on top of the dresser since the sets of three take up so much room. Don grabbed a sweater organizer at Walmart for their sweaters. Everything has a place and almost everything is in it's place.

This is all progress -and progress is good, I know. But the new organized closet makes the whole room feel different now, like a big boy room. It makes me a little nostalgic to know this -better organization and getting dressed in their rooms for now on -is another part of their baby routine that's gone for good.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Quick update

Luke is feeling much better now. The last couple weeks he has been waking his brothers up with his coughing - I mean waking himself up with his coughing and then waking up his brothers. "Hey G-ax! Wy Wy!" The past few days he has been sleeping better, much better. On Thursday morning they slept until 8:30ish (usually they get up at a quarter to 8), Friday morning I woke them at 9:20. Today they had an all time high when Don woke them up at 9:45! Maybe the cold air helps them sleep better.

I have been tooting along on my December album. Some days there is nothing to scrap (which makes for a nice break), but I am enjoying myself and seem to work better with the pressure of having to finish it the same day it is started.

Aunt Leigha surprised us this past week at totnastics. The boys (and us) loved having her be a part of it and now they think they see her everywhere.

Today we met Cathy at Sam's club and we decided to let the boys walk (run) the whole time. There were instances where we would have to put one or more back into the cart for a few minutes, but for the most part they behaved pretty well. They are such good boys, if only they would keep their shoes and socks on in the car -we would be set.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Photo Frenzy

I brought Luke to the Dr's to get him checked out. The last straw was at dinner Monday night when the poor little guy coughed so hard his eyes got puffy and swollen. We decided enough was enough -he wasn't getting any better on his own- so I brought him to the Dr on Tuesday morning. The Dr checked his pulse/ox, listened to his chest and then she diagnosed him with bronchiolitis. He is on a pill steroid for the rest of this week and being nebulized 3 times a day. His cough has certainly lessened, but his little nose keeps bleeding. I think his body is having a hard time adjusting to the dry cold outside and the dry warm in the house. Luke is a trooper though, and if you didn't already know he was sick -you would never guess.

The other night we went to my parents to take pictures for our Christmas cards. This has got to be the most behind I have ever been on cards. Usually I have envelopes written out in November at the latest. But the kids are slowing me down and I am just getting started on pictures, with Christmas cards not even on my horizon yet.

Our attempt at the Christmas photo was pretty stressful. Being I used to work in the photography business and take thousands of family Christmas pictures, I have an idea in my head what look we are trying to achieve. hahahahah This year we didn't even come close. Don and I only freaked out about 10 total. Yes, I will shamefully admit we were those parents who won't grasp that your children won't smile at you if you are hissing through your teeth at them about how they need to "look at the camera NOW". Even with that fun atmosphere, we managed to get a few pictures where everyone's eyes are in the same direction, so at least we don't have to try it a second time. Hopefully the boys aren't as traumatized as the parents were.

I have finished my December third page. You can check it out here.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Santa Baby

Yesterday we took the boys to go visit Santa again. We just wanted to go visit the big man. Our thought process was that maybe it would be possible to get them used to seeing Santa, so maybe we could get a half decent picture of them with Santa. Low and behold, yesterday was the day they warmed up to Santa Claus!

First we took them to the adjoined play area to run off their energy. Then we headed over to wait in line where Santa was scheduled to show up any minute. After waiting outside his little cabin for about 20 minutes, it was finally our turn to go inside and say hello. The boys were a bit hesitant at first, but I sat next to Santa Claus on the seat and just talked with him. Then Don sat on the other side of Santa, we quickly gathered up the boys and told them to look at the nice camera lady. Voila! We got ourselves a picture!

As you can tell from my post the other day, Don and I have begun putting our Christmas decorations up. We built a manger for our huge nativity scene. A few years ago, it worried us that some sort of vandalism would happen to our expensive set up. Now we have to worry about our boys happening to it. The manger is built and waiting for hay, but should be completed fairly soon.

Luke's cough is still lingering. It seems to be more so when he is in bed than any other time, and it has not been slowed by any medicine yet. We just thought to put up the cool mist humidifier a couple days ago and the nurse at my pediatrician office gave me the go ahead for some Chloraseptic. Hopefully this will be the key for him. If not, off to the Dr we go!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Back in the Groove

It has been about a month since I have scrapped anything worthy of finishing. I just lost my mojo and had ideas, but no pull through. Luckily, some inspiration was found on a blog I frequent. She had an idea of a December album to document getting ready for the Christmas festivities and it sounds like a good start to me. This way days can be quickly scrapped without having time to obsess and decide not to finish. Although today is the 2nd, I have just finished my December first page.

Journaling reads:
While the boys were napping, Don gathered some discarded wood pieces and a pallet from a nearby field.
By the time the boys woke up, we had built a manger for our Nativity scene.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Chit chat patty whack

The boys have been talking for a while now. Mostly words like truck, diesel, bus. Boy words. Colors, numbers, letters. The other day Wyatt said "gold fish" (he was talking about a sticker) and it hit me that they are really talking on their own now!

They still repeat what we say and if we ask them a question, chances are they will repeat the last word or two of our question instead of answering it; but they now know how to verbalize their own thoughts and wants.

Here are things Jaxon says:
"I do, I do"
"Hey, Da" "Hey, Nan!" "hey, hey"
"Yes Mam"
"Awww, man!"
"L is for Dee-dee!" (how he pronounces Lukey)

Things Luke says:
"Gon-na do?" He says this when Don is rough housing with him
"More whee" (when he wants to go down hills in the car)
And today, I was saddened to realize Luke now says "1-2-3" instead of "1-2-6"
He also says the alphabet in any order. Pick a letter here, and a letter there, put them together and there you go, it is Luke's alphabet. He does it so quickly and with such a definite voice, like he knows exactly what he is talking about.

Wyatt doesn't say many words. usually he is yelling at someone for touching his cars, or he'll point out letters he sees. He'll sing the alphabet with us. Or say what letters are for what word, (M- momma, D-dadda, p-pops, b-belle, L- dee-dee! etc). He is also big on the "I do, I DO!". Wyatt will also tell us when he wants more of something "more water, more fries, more apple" etc, but he doesn't use many repeated phrases like his brothers.

Up and down are confused all the time, as are ins and outs. Today it is raining out and the boys kept asking to put their window "up please, up, up". When they really wanted it down. They all took their shoes off in the car, and I made them walk out in the rain barefooted while carrying their shoes up to the house. This is generally their consequence for taking their shoes off in the car, but we never had to have them do it while it was raining. All three of them said "ccccold", but I doubt it was lesson enough to stop them from taking off their shoes next time.

The boys are also following directions a bit better. I have a basket for their shoes inside the door. They now know to take off their shoes and put them in the basket when we come inside (or days like today, they know to drop their shoes in the basket when they walk in the door). Today they wore jackets, and they unzipped their jackets and took them off themselves. These are little things, I know -but little by little they are growing up and learning to do the big boy stuff.

Today is my birthday and we have a big night planned. Don is taking me to see the Penn and Teller show and dinner at The Melting Pot. Mmmmm, the Melting Pot. I have been working out like crazy and watching what I eat for weeks now, hoping to earn my decedent evening out. All that melted cheese and chocolate will take a week to work off again, lol.

Thank goodness the kids finally enjoy going to the gym :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Randomness and totnastics

The boys have been a bit under the weather since we have been working out at the gym again. It is probably unavoidable that they pick up all the winter germs, but sometimes their little coughs are pitiful and I feel so bad for them. We are a bit hesitant to bring them back to the gym daycare -since we don't want to expose all the other kids to it, but our pediatrician said it was okay as long as the boys don't have fevers. Thank goodness, otherwise we would have to be locked down until winter!

We are having boundary issues here at the house. It is almost impossible for me to keep the kids hands off our counters. It used to be the safe zone for anything we didn't want little hands to touch, but not so much anymore. This gem of a picture was taken after Wyatt had reached up on the counter and took both the apple and the knife off the cutting board. We have since had to move all the knives (only knives) up, up, and away since Wyatt (like his mother) has a knife obsession.

Jaxon is finally back to himself. He was a bit off for a couple weeks, seeming unsettled and just unsure. It is so nice to have him back to his happy, confident self. His new thing is telling us he wants "hugs" while he squeezes us tightly. He is a very loving little guy.

Reagan is getting bigger and more beautiful by the day. The boys still completely dote on her and suffocate her with hugs and kisses. Today Luke had to go into time out because he tried to ride her like a horse. She hadn't even cried, but it was still enough to quickly make me freak out.

Totnastics is going well again. It was a bit shaky for the first two weeks of evening classes. I think having the classes later makes it a bit harder for the boys to stay focused, being they have had the whole day ahead of them and dinner is right around the corner. Thankfully last night they behaved really well and went where they should be 99% of the time. For the first time ever they actually did the floor exercises! Usually they huddle around Don and I, but they sat around us and stretched out like they should! They love doing the table and bear positions.

Jaxon seems to be a natural on most of the equipment, hanging from the bars and bringing his feet up to his head all by himself and also getting into a handstand position against a wall by himself! He really seems to respond well to challenges and trying new things. It is amazing how much muscle this guy has in his stomach!

Wyatt loves jumping on the trampoline. He will go on it over and over again, usually making us threaten him to get down so the next kid in line can have a turn. Last night we didn't have to chase him at all, he did what he should and would get back in line. We misplaced his Singular for the past few days and we could definitely tell his breathing was labored and slowing him down. Luckily, we found the container of medication last night, so he should be back to his normal wild self today.

Lucas is king of the balance beam. He just flies right across the beam and he loves to walk sideways on it. The instructor puts little beanie babies on the beam for the kids to walk over, and if he knocks one off, he has to put it back right away.

I can tell they are learning about following directions, waiting their turns and over all structure -just from the six or seven classes they have been to, only 45 mins a class. It is amazing what I would never think to teach them, they are leaning and doing really well at. Thank you Michele, for encouraging me to sign up and do it. The boys have learned so much socially and are having so much fun at it!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Christmas Spirit

This weekend Don and I have been exposing the boys to a bit of the Christmas spirit that is in the air. On Friday we made a trip to a restaurant in the mall and then walked around for a bit afterwards. The boys got to see all of the Christmas decorations- including the talking bear in the entrance, the caroling bears and they even got a chance to be introduced to Santa Claus! They were a bit hesitant about it, but luckily there wasn't a line so they were able to take their time to get comfortable around him. As far as sitting on his lap, I am not sure if they will decide they like him that much anytime soon. But, I am happy that they were at least accepting of him and not screaming while running away.

Saturday we went out to the District to see the big Christmas tree and hear the Christmas Carolers sing. The whole street was lined up with lighted trees and ornaments decorating the bushes. It looked really festive and the air was nice and crispy, probably the coldest the boys ever remember it being (mid 50's). I think the cold air filled them with a bit of spunk because as the night went on, they got a bit naughtier and naughtier until we decided it would be a good idea to take them home. Don was a fantastic hubby and brought them home and put them to bed himself while my Mom and I had a bit of one on one time, shopping for her New Year's outfit.

Last weekend we put up our Christmas tree while the boys were napping. It is new and we were impatient to see what it would look like in the foyer. We haven't got around to the ornaments yet, but the tree came with the lights already attached. Ever since the tree has been up, we have been talking about getting out the rest of the decorations. Today we spent all day cleaning out the garage to get to the Christmas decorations. It took 5-6 hours of pulling everything out of the garage and making piles of donating or selling and garbage piles. The boys loved running up and down the driveway with all their little treasures that we kept pulling out of the garage. Finally we finished up and cannot wait to get the lights hung up later this week.

Christmas is definitely in the air!