Friday, January 24, 2014

Super Drew and his Little Buddy, Baby Jesus

We put Judah's old Superman outfit on Drew's Baby Jesus and now they are buddies.  Drew is talking so much better.  We have nearly eliminated using "me" in the subject.  Now I am working on "him/her do it."   One of these days this guy will speak proper English.

It snowed around 6-7 inches here.  Brian has been off two days and it is too cold to go out, in the single digits.  Instead we swapped our living rooms and tried to catch up on school work.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Bright Side of a Long Car Drive

Judah's Drummer Boy stocking

I finished Judah's stocking while riding in the passenger seat since my husband never wants me to drive.  I ended up opting to put "Judah" on the stocking and make a "Ben" patch in case he wants to go by Ben when he is older.  I figured since I am putting in the effort sewing it, I should get to pick the name that's goes on it.  :)


 On Saturday, we drove out to see Grandma Bess.  She looked beautiful and so put together like she always does.  She seemed to be doing very well.   The retirement place that she lives in set up a room for us to have lunch in which was so lovely.  Brian's Aunt Carolyn and Uncle Bruce were there too.  We got our Italian Beef sandwiches that we get when we go there.  The kids were well behaved and Drew didn't break anything so that was a plus.  Luckily he's got quite the personality, so people seem to forgive him easily for having endless energy and being such a boy.  The hair dresser from down the hall made the kids balloon animals like she did last time.  Last time we visited her was 2 years ago when Drewy was about Judah's age.  Time flies, doesn't it?

The boys!  We thought it was funny that Carter picked out his t.u. sweatshirt while we were visiting, so I dug out Isaac's Aggie sweatshirt.


Great Grandma Bess and 5 of her 26 (I think!) great grandchildren

Brian and I got in the picture.

Great Grandma Bess tried to hold Judah, but he's a mover and a shaker.  We kept sitting him up and he kept straightening those legs like he always does.

She is laughing at how strong and wiggly he is.

Judah with (Great) Aunt Carolyn and Uncle Bruce

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Last Minute Trip

We took a last minute trip to Indiana because Brian's grandma has been in and out of the hospital a lot in the last month.  She is 100 years old and Brian really felt like we should go visit her again.  It was a 9.5 hour drive there that ended up being at least an hour longer due to snow and old country roads.  With stops it took nearly 12 hours.  The kids did great and Drew didn't even get carsick which is amazing!  Judah screamed only once for about 45 minutes.  It made Isaac start crying though towards the end of it.  He was the designated baby helper on the way to Indiana.  Brian plotted a Sonic on the way there so we made it to Sonic once both ways.  I got my new favorite drink, a mango-peach slush and a chili cheese dog.  (Yes, my diet started again today!)

We stayed at Brian's sister's house.  They live on a little farm with chickens and goats.  The kids were in heaven especially Genna who is the biggest animal lover.  Isaac was thrilled to have a boy his age to play with.  Carter is just a couple of months younger than him.

Isaac's holding a chicken.

Doesn't Drew look like the little boy on A Christmas Story.  When I sent him out, I told the kids to pick up back up if he fell over.  :)  It was in the teens!  Brrrr!

Genna is praying that they approve the law soon to allow us to raise chickens in the city limits at our house.  It was Brian's idea that I wasn't super thrilled with until I saw how sweet these chickens were.   I'm a big animal lover at heart, just one without any extra time to take care of them.  Brian swears that the kids and him will be in charge of them.

Cousin Lauren holding the baby Pygmy Goat, Lucy.  Lucy sounded just like Judah when she cried.

The kids found a spot in the front that had frozen ice over a low spot in the yard.  They were shoveling the snow to uncover their little ice rink.

That is ice there, but they hadn't uncovered it all yet.

Sledding on the ice

This was another of Genna's favorite things.  She wanted to know if we could make one of these in our yard when it snowed.
 They also had two four-wheelers and tied sleds to the back of them.  The kids all loved it!  Brian even talked me into riding on the four-wheeler with him.  I have never done that and am just not an adventurous girl when it comes to speed or heights.  He promised he'd go slow.  I wouldn't call what he did slow, but he insisted it was.  It was fun, I guess, but not really my thing.  :)

Isaac being pulled on a sled behind the four-wheeler.

Hannah's on the sled here.
Here's a video of Hannah behind the four-wheeler while her Auntie Kris drove.  This was much slower than when he took me, by the way.

I'll get pictures and stuff about our visit with Grandma Bess up in a day or so.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

There's a new chef in town

Brian has been wanting a deep fryer for a while and I had been putting it off for obvious waistline reasons.  However, I thought to myself, "My husband is wanting to cook, so why am I stopping him?"  Then I got him one for Christmas.

Brian's first fry, scotch eggs
He's fried meatballs, eggplant, and these scotch eggs so far.  He's not a big cook.  This is the same guy that served me crunchy Ramen noodles when I was sick years ago and WAY overly salted eggs not too long ago.  Grilling and frying though are right up his alley.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Drew and the Big Two

Year two has been good to Drew so far.  His vocabulary has really improved a lot, he potty trained himself way earlier than expected, and he hits and bites a lot less often.  Unlike his baby brother he is a big time daddy's boy!

Brian had just come home from work and was putting his stuff down and looking at the mail.  Drew thoroughly enjoyed the ride.

Drew keeps us laughing.  On New Year's Eve, we were saying our goodbyes to our neighbors, when I told him to say goodbye to Mr. Steve.  He goes over to Steve's sister and gives her a big hug saying, "Dood bye, Midder Deve."  She tickled him or something he didn't like and he came over to tattle on her and called her "Midder Deve" again. It just cracked us all up that he thought she was Mr. Steve when he's known him his whole life.

Drew keeps us on our toes.  Another time when we were at the same neighbor's house, I heard the front door and turned to see Drew coming back into the room.  I, just realizing that I had lost track of him, said, "What did you do?  Where were you?  And why didn't I know you were missing?"  My neighbor who has just two kids thought this was endlessly hilarious.

Drew is learning more about God.  Although, the older three could say all the important prayers well before this age, he just can finish the last word or two of each line.  I am pretty sure he just doesn't have the attention span for a whole prayer yet.  However, he did surprise me the other day and tell me, "Jesus die for me, Mom."  He thinks practically every picture of a baby is baby Jesus now too.

I am glad he is getting easier to handle, but I wish he would let his siblings help him with things more.  Since Judah was born, he only wants me to do everything for him it seems.  So that is why you'll find me sitting in the bathroom, nursing Judah while simultaneously wiping Drew's behind.  Oh yes, I just left you with a great mental picture of what my life is like.  :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Back to Work

 We are back to work in full swing now.  These pictures give a false sense of order since usually the floor is littered with baby toys or superheroes.  The three workers are rarely all focused at the same time.  I caught them at a good moment, but I still had to tell Isaac to stop playing with his pencil and do his work.

Drew is engrossed in his book.  He had an excellent first week back at school.  He happily did his 1 hour room time in exchange for a half hour educational DVD.  That scored us 1.5 hours of quiet school time.  Judah doesn't distract us yet since he is immobile and not talking yet.  He is much quieter than Drew with his squeals and grunts.  Drew was so loud I could barely talk over him.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

He finally had his 4 month well check!

Isaac spends the most time with Judah.  Judah laughs and smiles at him all the time and it puts the biggest smile on Isaac's face.  Maybe he got the brother he always wanted this time.  He and Drew just really don't have a smooth relationship.  And Drew has probably let Isaac cuddle him like this maybe twice in his whole life, including infanthood.

Dimples!   Five children it took for me to get those dimples!
 Judah finally had his 4 month well check.  It was cancelled twice.  I ended up seeing a different doctor since I was tired of the rescheduling.  He is the lightest of all three boys at this age, but about the same length.  He weighed 17.8 lbs and was 25 inches long.  He had no problems, and was deemed healthy as a horse.  He cried for a very brief time over the shots.  The best part was that he slept 7.5 hours that night which is the longest ever.

The baby makes some sweet sweet sounds, beautiful gurgles and coos.
 He is now blowing raspberries, holding and picking up toys within reach, and sleeping an average of 6 hours at night.  I have been holding out to let him cry at night again to get him to that 7 hour mark because he is almost there.  I keep hoping that he'll just start sleeping that extra hour himself without me having to force the issue.  Also, his diaper has suddenly started being dirty again in the night.  He was an every other day pooper for a good while, but now he is pooping all the time again.  I am sure within the next month I'll start just changing his diaper and putting him back down, but for now I am nursing him at 4:30 or 5am.  If he makes it til 6am, I start the day then, otherwise, I put him back down and wake him at 7am.

Like a cherub!

Judah rubbed a good bald spot on the back of his head again, so I gave him another good shave. 

Judah has definitely entered the fuss for attention phase.  I can't walk by him while he is playing happily or he immediately starts crying.  Also, sometimes even just hearing my voice sets him off.  He is very clingy to me and cries with his daddy a lot like Genna used to do as an infant.  I bought a new baby wrap and have been trying to get him used to it, but he really doesn't seem that happy in it when he is already fussy. If he was just wanting to be held, it does seem to work.  I'll get a picture of that soon.

I love this one!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

A woman's work is never done.

 Boy, is that especially true for a mother!  I have spent all of my time off since getting back from our Christmas trip gutting this house and reorganizing it.  I have thrown away 3 full black trash bags filled to the brim just from going through the kids' bedrooms and the finished part of the basement.  I over-filled three big boxes of toys and other things to give away.  The result is a much cleaner feel to the house, but I still feel like I can't find a good place for everything and certainly can't keep everything in it's place even if there is a place for it.  Drew is like a little tornado that follows me around, undoing all my hard work.

I cleared out corners and made room for their new doll bunk beds.

I moved the square shelves with canvas boxes over here.
The girls were a big help, Hannah being an exceptional and willing helper.  I moved most of the "rowdy" toys to the basement so that when friends come over they can play loudly and not wake the baby or the two year old napping.  We kept running into the issue of the little boys napping while we had kids wanting to play with all the toys that are in those rooms.  A month and a half ago, I moved the kids' desks up to the kitchen, and I took the little table (we outgrew) to the basement for a game table.  This has been working pretty well.  I still have the major stuff for school in the basement closet, but things we use everyday are on the top of the computer desk and under the kids' desks.  Now I feel like kids can play down in the basement without worrying about the school stuff getting messed up.  

The boys room has books, and one shelf of toys for Drew's room time play.  I put the trains away and am hoping that they will want to play with them again one day OR, even better, that Judah will be a train guy.  Thomas trains are expensive!  I just can't get rid of those yet.

This bookshelf won't last long organized like this, but I had to go through the books to remove the books that had migrated from the other rooms.  I considered color coding the spines with pieces of colored duct tape, but decided it just wasn't worth it.

Our neighbor gave us this Ikea organizer and I just bought the inserts for it from Ikea.  So far it keeps the living room much cleaner.

I even went through the pantries and every cabinet and drawer in the kitchen.  I still have some labeling and final details to take care of and the monster of the unfinished part of the basement to tackle, but I almost got it all done in time to start back at school  this week.  Like I said, my work is never done.  If it was, I might actually get to sit back and relax or something.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Technically it's still Christmas

Despite the fact that the world stops celebrating on December 26th, the Christmas season is just getting started then and lasts until Epiphany, January 6th.  (That's today!)  We still have our decorations up and I realized I didn't put pictures of most of them up this year yet.  Plus, I found this picture that I hadn't scanned and posted yet.  This Santa pic was taken at our church's Christmas bazaar before Advent even began.

Judah was apparently bored of the whole thing.

Judah's stocking isn't quite finished yet, but it will be soon.  In case you are wondering, I plan to make two name "plates" with Velcro so that we can change it out until we know what he ends up being called by everyone.  Then I can sew the fabric with the right name on it.

I have Christmas cards hanging on either side of the entry to the living room from "Hope" and "Joy" tags and twine.

Clothespins hold up the cards.

Then I have more on the cabinets with thick Christmas ribbon tied around the cabinet doors.  

I decorated my tea cabinet (inside and on top) since I can almost guarantee little fingers leaving them alone.

The tree sits in front of our front window.  Our outside lights didn't happen this year since we had an electrical problem with the outside outlets, so at least our blue lit tree was seen from the street.

Our nativity took over our altar.
I didn't take a picture of our Advent wreath this year.  I planned ahead last year and bought several sets of them so it didn't sneak up on me again.

We ended the Christmas season by doing our Epiphany traditional prayers and song and Brian wrote above our door.  This is not the exact prayers and such that we use, but you get the gist if you look here.