Sunday, May 29, 2011

Happy 3rd Birthday Party!!

Thursday, I drove the boys up to New Jersey. John hasn't been able to be around for any of Eli's birthday parties so we celebrated a bit early this weekend since he'll be missing the third birthday in a row for his little man. 

We just had a small family party in Grandma's back yard. Eli was over the moon that this entire party was for him! He loved every second: including the 9:15 bed time! 
I can't believe he's almost THREE!! 

My baby boy's pink toes: such a contradiction to his personality.  

He even sang happy birthday to himself! 

The requested dump truck cake, full of "dirt." 

He was a fan! 

A worm was trying to escape. 

A Daddy with his favorite boys. 

Deacon graced us with his sweet presence later in the party. 

The favorite toy from us! It's a Bruder crane truck and it's fantastic! 

Try to be patient while opening a gift of clothing. 

I think he thought it was odd to just have picture taken with us (and no brothers). 

The biggest brother was so patient while Eli was opening gifts!

He couldn't lift the container of dirt in to his dump truck...

Deacon had his first taste of ice cream. 

Turner always enjoys running after the ice cream truck!

While we were cleaning up, I told the boys to just dig in to the rest of the cake. They
obliged by the shovel full.
Eli thought the "dirt" was awesome. 

"Mommy, if I have to do 'three' one more time..." 

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Yesterday we went to the beach with some fantastic friends. Luckily, Teresa is so at ease with my circus we were able to manage not only the beach but an impromptu stop at Five Guys! 

Jack, making sand angels.

Deacon really enjoyed playing in the sand! He only tried to
put in his mouth once, but went to town just running his hands through it.

I had to ask for a second opinion, but I think it's true: Deacon's first "real"
word is CHEESE! I had the camera out and he kept saying "teeze."

Eli didn't bother much with the ocean, he just enjoyed digging.

I have more pictures and a video of Deacon crawling (finally!) but my Mac won't let me move the video from iPhotos. 

The boys still fought like crazy all day and were so tired from playing in the ocean and sand that they were slurring their speech on the way home! Again, I got zero sleep but I think I've FINALLY figured out two things going on:

1.) LOW milk supply! Apparently, it's common during your period. I never had one until 
either got pregnant and/or Eli self weaned so I had NO clue why Deacon wasn't feeling full. 
So, I made an emergent call to an IBCLC to get some Mother Love "More Milk Plus" 
since she's the only person around that sells it! I've been drinking tea and downing 
herbs like a nut. 


2.) I think this is the time in the year where the older boys are closest in age and their 
emotional and social needs are almost the same. So, they're driving each other (and me) bonkers! 
We spent today talking about using kind words and gentle touches but they even got in a fight at church. Of all places. Sheesh...

Despite the incredibly tiring week, we lived. We learned a few things, too. I think. I can't remember...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tiring Season of Life

I remember being tired in college from working insane hours, going to school, partying, and driving 4 hours to see John on the weekends. Just starting it all over again the next week. I remember thinking: when will it end?!?

Fast forward a few years and, unfortunately, I think the same thing some days. When will this season of life end? I HATE thinking that way because I'm trying so hard to absorb every single second of the boys' lives. It's hard to do some times. 

I try to go to bed by 10 pm because I have no idea when the baby will wake up. He could be up once, or he could be up every 40 minutes -all night long. 

For the last four days I've tried SO hard to be up before the kids. I started by getting up at 6am, but Turner was coming in at 5:58, telling me he needed to potty. 

Reluctantly, I set my alarm for 5:15 so I can get some "me" time and maybe get a handle on the day. (If Eli is in the school room with nothing to do (even coloring), Turner and I can't get any work done.) Well, the baby was up at 5:22. 

Last night, I slept so hard I didn't hear Deacon and finally snapped to at 3 something in the morning. He was inconsolable because I didn't pick him up quick enough and stayed up for over 3 hours. He just tossed and cried and nursed. I tried to get him to sleep by letting him sleep on me, rocking him and putting him in his bed. He finally fell asleep on me at some point, around 6am. 

Eli came in at 6:15. 

I can't catch a break here. 

I can't nap because I'm trying to keep up with the day to day house work. Nothing special, just trying to stay sanitary here. Deacon eats anything in sight and the kids drop everything they touch so vacuuming daily is a must. I'm now organizing and packing for the solo journey to New Jersey all the while entertaining the kids. 

I never want to wish time away, but I just want to see the day where I might sleep for just 6 hours a night. Just SIX. 

I'm off to suck down coffee like it's water and wash this sour attitude off. Oh, and unload the dishwasher, sweep up lunch, finish up some stuff for school, retrieve a smelly diaper from somewhere in the house, and think of something to feed the kids for dinner. 

Joy. I hear someone up early from a nap. 


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Takes a Lickin' but Keeps on Tickin'

Lately, these punks of mine have been runnin' me ragged! 
Two new teeth for Deacon have been giving him trouble for about four nights. Last night he woke up every 40 minutes or less until 4:30. At which point I looked at my clock and had to decided to sleep or wake up. I've been Inspired to Action so I'm rollin' out early to work out or get ready for the day. I went back to sleep to wake up at 6:00...but Turner came in at 5:58. 

He finally pulled up on something in the living room (he can do this in his crib). 

The boys having been missing their Daddy and have been fighting like brothers. It takes every fiber of my being to calm down, but I've managed not to make a fool of myself by yelling once this week. It's exhausting trying to stay patient! 

Getting ready to paint piggy banks.
 Part of running mommy ragged is...mommy. I run these buggers around so they're niiiice and sleepy at bed time. Today it was a mile and a half bike ride (with a few stops at the lake in our neighborhood). Parks, painting, and projects! Oy!

Red and sweaty from playing in the bouncy house! 

Check out the huge mosquito bite on this guy's head! 

To stop the fighting for 10 minutes, I made bath paint (clear dish soap + a drop of food coloring).
They fought, at first...but then scrubbed the entire tub! 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Training Wheels

We were at the park today and my kids were shoeless, playing in dirt. They were filthy, but being curious and enjoying play. 
Throwing leaves in to a storm drain.
Some mom friends were "oohing and ahing" that I  could just let my kids play in the dirt. 

And that I let the baby play in the grass. 

And "OH MY! HOMESCHOOLING? Don't you need a break from them? How do you clean the house? When do you sleep?" 

The mom friends each only had one child, but were both pregnant with their second. They were "amazed" at how I could wrangle three boys. They kept asking "how I do it all." We are all Navy wives, so I was telling them that if they've done it (TV time, kids sleeping with me [with toes stuck in my face], the extra treats, etc) while the husband is away, chances are I have too! I don't know if they believed me...

Which got me thinking: am I actually doing that good of a job? Am I actually "doing it" with three kids?


It wasn't long ago I found out I was pregnant with Deacon and PANICING. Literally, heaving/sobbing so hard John thought I was a crazy woman. 

I used to BADGER a friend with questions: "How do you...? When do you...? Who do you feed first? What happens when they all cry? What do you do when your husband leaves you alone [for weeks and weeks and weeks]?" 

Now people are asking ME questions? 

The training wheels are off? What?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Just Another Day Around Here

When asked how she's doing, John's grandmother will reply "Oh, you hits, no runs, no errors." 
Today was one of those days where we broke even. Did a little school work, a little house work, a little fun work and it was a pretty easy day. 

Turner loves to practice his photography skills! 

Our park gear takes up more room than Deacon!

A boy and a sand pit. Heaven on Earth.

Dunks had a few snacks while I dug around with Eli. 

Love those little feet. 

Sweet as pie, but this child has found his yelling voice and thinks it's hilarious!

He asked me to take his Army picture. He is set on joining the Army and driving a
"shooter truck" (tank). Thanks to Uncle Chad for the inspiration...

Playing at the park. We stayed for almost two hours and those little dudes were beat!
I thought I was all cute in a flowy peach top with some new shorts, until I looked down and realized I left the house in my "yard shoes." Better than my slippers, which I've been known to wear out accidentally.


To end the night: Deacon in real pajamas for the first time. The big brothers loved the guitars! 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Being a Mom

I don't recall ever playing house and wanting to be the mom. I always wanted to be one of the sons or the dad and used to fight with my male cousins over who got to be the "head" of the house. I was a major tomboy and am not sorry for that. 

When John and I got married, we knew we wanted kids but I had ZERO preconception of what Motherhood would hold for me. I thought, if I was allowed to do it, how hard could it be? 

The wild things that made me a mom.'s not all that easy. But, it's not all that hard, either. 

Early morning Mother's Day visitors.
A little bit of love, and a little bit of guidance unearths a whole lotta hugs and kisses. 

I've grown so much not only as a mother but as a  person in the last 4 1/2 years that I hardly recognize my old self.  I never could have imagined in my wildest dreams that I could become better by having children. They have shaped me. 

The chocolate waffle/pancake with raspberry sauce tradition.
While I still struggle to be better, the days are irreplaceable. Each night when they go to bed, I try to remember that they'll never be that exact age again: I resolve to be that much better the next day. 
Deacon's gift...
We fight, we love, we kiss we hug. 

Livin' in the 'hood is the coolest thing I've ever done.