Friday, May 14, 2010

So Fresh and So Clean

Let me be very honest - We HATE bath nights. If there is one thing that Jason and I both agree on, it is that baths are horrible.

They are such a hassle - there is nothing relaxing about it. We can't fit all four kids in at the same time so it is a rotate in/rotate out system. Those who are in the tub try to climb over each other, and inevitably someone is pushed into the water. It isn't convenient to put their diapers/pajamas on in the bathroom, so we have to carry each wet and flailing baby several rooms away. And worst of all... all four kids HATE to have their hair washed. Lots of kicking and screaming and thrashing and gasping and... it just isn't pretty!

The funny thing is, you would think they love baths based on the following pictures! Actually, they do pretty well in the water until it is splashed directly in one of their faces (Easton is the worse!).

I like this picture because you can can get an idea of how tall Ellery is compared to Easton. I think it is at least an inch difference. Gianna is somewhere in the middle.
We are hoping to spend time in our little pool this summer. Maybe this will help with the fear of water in their face - ugh! I can always wish, right?!?!?!

Our Little Monkey (& Update)

This shirt describes Easton to a T - although he has three sisters and is smaller than all three, he is definitely a boy! He climbed into this on his own. (Can you tell he is teething - such a drool monster too!)
One of the things that Easton mastered much faster than the girls is climbing! There is no stopping him. He has abs of steal - he can pull himself on to anything. He is also pretty clever - he has figured out how to push toys over so that he can climb on them. He has also figured out how to push toys up to the couch, to use as a step, so he can climb on to the cushions - such a stinker!!!
We live in an old house, with very steep steps. He was the first to climb them. Thank goodness for gates! He climbs them fast and quiet - not a good combination. (The girls were both very jealous of this accomplishment and quickly figured out how to climb up right after him.)
We have a craft type of table in our front room. This was Easton's first item that he climbed, and still his favorite - ugh! He loves to climb on the table and stand in our front window. The look on peoples face's as they walk by is priceless :) Don't worry - we don't encourage it (Jason was standing just out of the camera's view).
I love the look on Gianna's face - 'Get off! I want to play with it - Mom!'. The girls have about had it with him climbing on all of their shared toys ;) We spend quite a bit of our playtime getting him down/off of things!
Easton Updates:

While we are on the topic of Easton...
A few weeks ago I took him back for his year check-up appointment with the pediatric cardiologist. The EKG results looked fabulous, so he was cleared from their schedule - yay! One doctor off of our list. They said that his heart is functioning perfectly, and they couldn't hear his murmur (which may come and go, and that is okay).

After finding out that his dermoid cyst was mostly fatty tissue and of no threat, we waited on his surgery until mid-June so that I could be home. We go for Easton's pre-op appointment next week. They will then give us more details about what to expect. We will fill everyone in as the surgery nears!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

What a wonderful way to spend my day - with my kids!
We were lucky enough to celebrate Mother's Day brunch with my amazing mother, and my sister who is also amazing (and of course my dad, brother, brother in law, and Baby Lincoln were there too). My mom pushed me out of my comfort zone and suggested that we go out for brunch - to an actual restaurant - yikes! It was so nice not to have to clean my house and wonder what food to make. We had our very own room, so we didn't have to worry about the babes bothering those around us, if the high chairs were in the servers way, or trying to keep Quin in her chair... The atmosphere was fun, the food was fantastic, and the company was the best!
Quin and my sister Abbey (who is also Quin's Godmother)
What great fun to see Gianna, Ellery and Easton in restaurant high chairs - all in a row :)
I think we actually captured a half way decent picture of the triplets with Linc (or Baby Lincoln as Quin affectionately calls him). The pictures taken after this second were also quite amusing - Gianna turned into the corner, Linc started crying, Ellery tried diving off the couch head first and Easton laughing out loud at everyone. Good times are just beginning with these four.
I hope all of you had a wonderful Mother's Day. Nothing more could have changed my life in such a wonderful way than becoming a mother. God has definitely blessed me. I am so in love with my four amazing kiddos! Life couldn't get better!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Food vs. Tulips???

Last weekend we headed down for our fill of Tulip Time food! I look forward to this week simply for the food. It probably takes a couple of years off my life. There are many great events/attractions, but the food... MMmmm.
We still haven't been able to convince Quin of the yummy-ness. Last year she wouldn't touch a single piece of food that even looked like it had been dipped in grease. She did attempt this year. After one bite, she tore off the breading from her corn dog and ate the hot dog. Good thing I brought extra food.
Leave it up to Quin to make her corn/hot dog into a microphone!
I love this picture of G! I think she is trying to tell Quin that she would love to switch her food for the corn dog :)
I found these adorable tulip sunglasses and couldn't pass them up - I envisioned Quin wearing them while sitting in the tulip fields. Yeah, not so much.
After our fill of junk food, we walked over to Kinderplaats (sp???). It is an area dedicated to kids! There were games, petting zoo areas, and many, many blow up/bouncer areas. While Quin was still not so hot on the bouncers (she did give it a go again, but was outta there in 5 seconds flat), she did LOVE the blow up slide. She loves slides at the park, so we weren't surprised that this was her favorite.
A trip to Tulip Time isn't complete without a picture in front of the tulips... Well, at least all four of them are in the same picture, with tulips behind them. Yes, this is the best one :(
Quin came close to 'loving' a few of the tulips a little too much. I thought for sure the tulip police may be after us, but none were squished too badly ;)
My favorite quotes of the day came from Quin. On our way out we told her that we were going to get an elephant ear to eat on the way home. She yelled to Jason as he was walking away, "No Daddy, just get me a rabbit ear". Trying not to laugh too hard, I explained to her why it was called an elephant ear and thought we were squared away. I was handing her a piece in the car, after a long pause, she asked "Mommy, where the elephant's face". Ha!
We had a wonderful time - I am loving our family time while we are out and about. We have a system for unloading the van when we get home. Ellery happened to be the last one out this time, and I couldn't help but fall in love all over again when I saw this smiling face - love, love, love her!

Big Girl Bed

Eeek! I am very far behind in posts - I hope to catch up soon.

Over spring break we converted Quin's crib into a 'big girl' bed. Yes, she recently turned 3 and she was still in her crib. We should have made a bigger effort to convert her bed earlier. I was afraid that she would start wandering at night and wake up the babies, and let's be honest - less sleep is NOT what I need :)

I still wasn't sure how she would do with her new found nighttime freedom, but we had come to the conclusion that it was time. She has done very well. She is very proud!

There was a lot of testing the first few days, but our handy dandy video monitor sure helped us. She couldn't figure out how in the world we knew she was out of her bed - hmmm.... Who knows how long we will use this monitor :)
For the time being (it has been a few weeks), she doesn't get out of bed until we tell her it is okay. When she wakes up, she sits on the edge of her bed and yells 'Mommy. Daddy. Wayuhr you'. I would love to say this will continue... but who knows! I will take it for now.

A Day in the Life of...

…our fabulous four!
I have been trying to carve out time for over two months to write this post, but my time fills so fast that this post has been pushed down on my to-do list. I need to get it down in print now, because it has changed over the past few weeks.

People often ask me ‘what is your morning like?’ or ‘how do your evenings go?’ or ‘are your kids all on the same schedule’… I love to answer everyone’s question. I also like to look back at old posts and process how far we have come. So, this post is to kill two birds with one stone. As most of you know, this blog is my baby book(s) and helps serve as my memory. I have a HORRIBLE memory. So… This will be a long one. Sorry to those of you who just don’t care :)

No matter who is home (Jason, myself or our nanny), our fab four are pretty set on their schedule – same routine, just a different day. We try very hard to keep their daily ins and outs the same, which is key for us in having each day run smoothly.

7:00am – Gianna, our ‘who needs sleep’-er, is usually starting to stir. Jason and I change the triplets and bring them down for breakfast. We try to feed them breakfast before Quin wakes up – doesn’t always happen that way. During the week, Jason and I both leave the house around 8:00.
9:00 – Morning naps. Gianna needs the least amount of sleep, so she usually only takes a half hour nap. Easton and Ellery both take hour naps. Over the next month or two, I hope to decrease this so that we can spend more time outside when the weather warms up.
11:30 – Lunch/bottles for the triplets. Quin usually eats lunch around noon.
12:30 – Afternoon naps. The triplets take a nice afternoon nap – usually at least an hour and a half (depends on their morning). Quin has just recently moved on to a ‘big girl’ bed, so her naps are less frequent. We try very hard to have her ‘rest’ at least a half hour. When she does nap, we limit it to a half hour so that she isn’t up all night.
3:30 – The triplets have another bottle. My hope in the next month or so is to stretch this towards dinner.
5:00 – We have dinner as a family. We try very hard to make our nights together a ‘Focus On Our Four’ time. When the weather is nice, we love to get outside. We do bath every other night.
7:00pm – We give the triplets their last bottles. Quin usually has a small snack while she watches one of her shows. We then head upstairs for stories, singing, prayers and bedtime.
8:15 – All four kids are usually asleep. When we are lucky, they sleep through the night, until 7:00 the next morning. Gianna has had horrible nights for about a month and a half – her molars took FOREVER to come in. It was painful for all of us – it took her quite a bit of coaxing to fall asleep, and then she would wake up at least once in the middle of the night. I am hoping that we are passed that now (fingers crossed!).

After everyone is asleep, Jason and I do the dishes and any other tidying up that needs to be done. I then usually spend at least an hour doing school work. I try to go to bed around 10:30.
I try to wake up every morning around 5:30. This gives me enough time to get myself ready and do anything else that needs to be done (laundry, unload dishwasher, get breakfast around…). No – I don’t have a whole lot of extra time. So, what gives you might wonder? My ‘me-time’… which for the most part is okay. I have a huge pile of magazines and a loaded DVR just waiting for me. I only have 19 more teaching days – so it won’t be long until I can get to them (or so I am hoping).

I know I say it often, but I wouldn’t change a thing! We are very busy, but I love it!!! We do have rough days, days I wonder ‘what in the world did we get ourselves into’! But for the most part, things run pretty smoothly. The only reason why our family life works so well is because Jason and I are a team, and we have a wonderful nanny! A big thank you to both of them!