Monday, April 25, 2011

March of Dimes

This coming Saturday we will be walking in the March of Dimes, March for Babies.

{I can't believe how lucky we are! Look at those teeny little features - and this picture was taken when they were around 4 weeks old! We owe their health to the wonderful, and educated, nurses/doctors at the DeVos}

Jason wrote this to his co-workers today, and I couldn't say it any better!
Now that the kids are older, healthier, and much more mobile…..we feel it is our time to give back. We would not be where we are today without the support that March of Dimes provides. We feel we have a powerful story to tell about GOD's work and how he reaches his hands down to so many people to help. We knew that March of Dimes would be a great place to start giving back. If you are not familiar with March of Dimes, and specifically the March for Babies initiative…please check on out their webpage.

The link below will take you to the site.

We will be taking OurSizemoreFour to a March of Dimes, March for Babies walk on Saturday. If you are able to donate to our cause, please do.

The donation process is simple….just click on the link below or copy it to your browser. Our team name is Sizemore 6.

Thank you! Jason and Joelee

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Girls Day Out

So maybe it wasn't an actual day, more like a few hours, but... it was 'girls only' and we were definitely 'out'! Quin, Gianna, Ellery and I met up with my fab friend Meagon and her equally fab daughter, Ainsley. The six of us went to see the performance of 'The Aquatic Adventures of Johnny Starfish and the Mermaids', put on by the Grand Rapids Ballet. The performance was perfect - short and sweet, with great costumes and music. Very entertaining - all three of my girls loved it. That is saying a lot! Quin and Ainsley hanging out before it began: Gianna playing with Meagon (also her God Mommy!)
So, seriously... not a good picture. All three girls were done sitting and wanted nothing to do with pictures.
Before the performance, they had activities for the kids to enjoy. Quin made a fish out of a paper plate, but wouldn't try any of the outfits/hats on (she said that there were too many people watching - Lord help me at her dance recital next month when she has to stand up in front of people and dance!). Anywho... they still had all of the costumes in the lobby after the show and she was more than eager to try them on then (the crowds cleared quickly when the show was over). She loved the pink frilly ballet costumes.
Gianna wouldn't try anything on, but she loved touching the hats.

I was surprised, but Ellery was happy to try the hats on. Way to go Elle!
A big thank you to Meagon for suggesting that we go! And, a big thank you to Ainsley who puts up with my kids :) We love you both!!!

Spring Break Art Projects

We had some extra time over spring break to do some crafting! I would have loved to have gotten these adorable lambs up at the beginning of March - and added lions, but... there was no time :( The lambs alone are perfect decorations for Easter. Quin couldn't stand the idea of them not having something to stand on, so she added the green hill by using her decorative scissors. Not intentional, but I like how my flash looks like a sun. Hee, hee :)
We also made flowers out of their hands and footprints.

We put them in our front window (instead of our door) and I just could not get a good picture. You can see them well from the road though, and I love how they look from the inside also. Our white paper is so thin, and the paint dries pretty thick, so the flowers shine through to the inside also.
Quin and I usually test out my ideas before I let the babies dive in. I tried a couple of different flowers, one being this tulip. I did not like it when we did it on the paper. Just for fun, I cut it out later and decided it was pretty cute. If you live in Holland, it would be fun to make rows of these during Tulip Time!
These, obviously, are not related to handprints or footprints, but we worked on them at the same time. I first saw them here, and thought they were clever (and cheap!). As I painted their hands with different colors, I painted the inside and outside of toilet paper tubes. I just used regular Crayola washable paint. After they dried I just eyeballed them as I cut them into small circles, and then hotglued them together.

It was hard to get a true picture of them against the lighted windows, but I really like how they turned out!

I also had to add the cutest leprechaun's ever! I hope to make these with my own kiddos next year, but the following two are from my first graders. We made the handprints first and then my students used paper from our scrapbox to make the whole body/head. ALL of them were simply adorable - they added so many details!
I love this one! He decided that his leprechaun had a small beard, and spiky hair - I just love the way first graders think!!!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

We Made a Break For It!

Once I realized that my kids could do this: and this:
with their cereal, I knew we could venture out for an overnight adventure! Woo Hoo! This is the family fun I have been waiting for ;)

We took advantage of my spring break, and took our awesome foursome to Double JJ Ranch. We went for two nights, which was perfect for a first time away as a family of six. We went the first night on our own - and had a ton of fun navigating our way around the place and spending time in the waterpark! Our suite was sweet! (sorry, couldn't resist) It had a full kitchen which was perfect - we made breakfast and lunch right there, and didn't have to worry how the kids would act/what they would eat.
It also had a large living room (we quickly had to do some kid proofing).
There were also two large bedrooms and two bathrooms. All four kids slept in one room. Each of the triplets had their own pack and play (they couldn't climb out of them - thank goodness!). And Quin slept on a futon. It was perfect - one big sleepover :)

{Sidenote: My only complaint (for anyone who is considering staying there) was that the doors to the hall and decks didn't have tall deadbolts or chain locks. The dead bolts were built into the door handle, so our kids couldn't easily get out whenever they wanted - kinda scary!}
The master bedroom has a jacuzzi tub within feet of the bed - Quin thought that was hillarious! All four kids loved to take their baths in there. Quin would beg for us to turn on the 'rockets' (jets).
The second day, my parents (GiGi and Popa) joined us for the day. My sister Abbey, her husband Kirk and their little guy Lincoln also joined us for the second day and night. It was nice to have extra hands at the waterpark, and extra playmates.

I couldn't resist adding this picture of Gianna sitting on GiGi's lap. She is soo happy!
Easton HATED the water - no way around it. We went to the waterpark three seperate times. It took him at least 45 minutes each time to warm up. And even then, all he wanted to do was go down the little slides and splash water at others.

He loved being out of the water though!
All that stress really tired him out!
Quin had a blast!
The next two pictures aren't great, but I was afraid of dropping my camera in the water (I totally wouldn't put it past me!). Both Gianna and Ellery loved the water. Both girls liked floating on their bellies and 'walking' around on their hands in the shallow end.

Another horrible picture, but one I had to add. I just need to document how long and lanky Ellery is! There were some major recessive genes working together the day God made her! It cracks me up. I wouldn't be surprised if she is the tallest one in our family some day.
We went out to dinner with everyone - and Lincoln kept us all entertained! I just love this face!!! After checking out of the hotel, we mosied on over to the 'Back Forty' where there was a petting farm, horse riding, and other activities. All of the kiddos loved the animals.

Easton may not like the water, but he does LOVE animals. No matter where we go, he is always drawn to animals (and they seem to love him right back!).
We had lunch with Abbey, Kirk and Lincoln before we left. We ate at a little bar, with fighting 'cowboys' and everything. I was so happy that the three of them could join us on our get away. I am hoping that this is only the beginning of our 'family' trips together!

Ellery and Lincoln did some high fiving while we waited for our food.

We had a great time away! I love seeing my four grow up, and become such good friends. There was a lot of hand holding as we made our way through crowds (Quin is really good at looking out for the babes!). My favorite is when they hold hands when they don't need to (this was in an open pasture).

I can't wait for many more getaways with my awesome foursome (and Jason too!).

Our Bed Time Saga

I have always felt good about our sleep training tactics. Jason and I have worked very hard to give all four of our kids the skills to be good sleepers - they have only slept in their cribs, know how to soothe themselves back to sleep and nap really well! Quin transitioned beautifully out of her crib into a toddler bed. Somehow I had lulled myself into thinking that it would be that easy with the triplets. Not so much!

About two weeks ago the triplets decided that they didn't want to stay in their cribs anymore :( They have been able to climb out of their cribs for months, but with their sleep bags on it hasn't been worth their effort, until now... The three of them are in cahoots together! If left to their own device, they will stay up for at least an hour and a half after bedtime. And, if I don't watch the monitor close enough, this is a taste to what I will walk into: (They were all sleeping, so I went to brush my teeth. It was a matter of 5 minutes, max!)
They love to pull every last piece of clothing out of their drawers. I had to laugh this time because Ellery's sleep sack got stuck under the drawer and she couldn't get out. Easton did try to help her, but Gianna just acted as if there wasn't anything wrong with this situation. UGH!

At first I was curious to watch what they would do without anyone 'watching'. The one and only time that we did not interupt their shenanigans they played tag, hid in their closet, opened their shutters, climbed into each other's crib... They also had a great deal of fun rocking together in their chair - they would rock altogether and then the girls would push Easton out and laugh and laugh. I was able to catch some of their actions on video, from the monitor. Gianna tired out the fastest, but wouldn't climb back into bed (who knows why!). Easton and Ellery rubbed her back and gave her kisses as she screamed for me - really, very sweet indeed!!!

The 'fun' of this tired quickly for Jason and I! So, we have worked hard the past few days to get Easton's room ready enough to move him out of their shared space. He has slept in his (very stripped down) room for three nights now, alone. Although the three babes are falling asleep better, Jason still needs to stand in the hall and police their crib hopping for at least a half an hour. We are hoping that the fun of this wears off and we can return back to normal. We do not have the toddler railings for their cribs yet, and I would like to keep them in their cribs as long as possible.
To be continued...