Monday, December 28, 2009

We were out of town skiing this weekend...(more on that later) we were on our way home with Jentzen, Ava and Keira. Quaid got to ride home with grandma and grandpa.

We had just eaten at Hardees...oh yummm. There's one in Hinkley which just happens to be half way to Giants Ridge. Lucky Me!! We stopped there on the way and on the way home....Hot Ham and Cheese and Curly Fries!!! (sigh) Until next year my fastfood love!

We had just finished lunch and gotten the kids packed back in the car...Ava and Jentzen started to squabble about something....

Big Tough Daddy (in his stern angry dad tone): "We just had lunch, you're full...I don't want to hear any fighting! If you do I will pull this car over and throw you in the snow!"

Jentzen: "OOOOHHHH Daddy!! That sounds like fun!!!!"

Foiled again!!

Monday, December 21, 2009 quite special. He's got the cutest smile and his laugh is absolutely delightful! I can't get enough of it. It's the cutest little giggle. I am always picking hip up, throwing him around, tickling him like crazy...just so I can hear it. In mid laughter, he always squeaks out, "Please stop it mama!" And I always do, I'm really working on him to ask properly for things and saying words instead of letting out a shout or grunt, or whine in I want show him that it acutally works. And the he just sits there waiting for me to attack him again...and I always do.

He is very expressive with is words. If he likes something, he likes it...his entire face lights up and his he opens his mouth as wide as it can go with every word...and each word he says as if it's going to change the world. It's quite cute as well, to match his giggle. And if he doesn't like something that same passion goes into his arguement as well! His face, volume, and tone say it all! When the boy is angry, you know it! He huffs and puffs like a train and you can hear it all over the house.

So he was having a little incident when he was well, let's just say "frustrated" with something. So Nathan told him to go to his room and come back down when he had a better attitude. We don't allow that attitude in our house. So we hear him walking up the stairs and then Ava shouted, "Jentzen, come and play....."

So down he comes the stairs...

N: "Jentzen, you're supposed to be going upstairs."

J: (in the chipperest of happy voices) "I finished my attitude!!"

N: "Jentzen....."

J: "But I finished my attitude!!!"

How can you say no to that!?!?!

Friday, December 11, 2009

I've made a goal to take the kids out somewhere once a week. Sometimes I forget that when I'm at work, the kids stay home. Not going anywhere the other days of the week mean my kids stay home all of the days. And especially now that it's too cold to get outside...they really are stuck in a lot.

So yesterday was the day. It also happened to be the coldest day of the winter yet. It was single digits. Yuck. I really just wanted to wrap up with a blanket and lay on the couch all day and watch movies. Yeah, that wasn't happening!

I told the kids early in the morning that we would go somewhere after lunch so I would have to go. I'm an adult and I still have to trick myself into it!

Quaid asked where we were going. I replied with Costco. You could imagine his response. Since when is grocery shopping considered somewhere fun for kids? He was not happy. I did add "then somewhere fun after" and he was okay with that.

Not only was it cold but there was also fresh snow on the ground. We arrived at Costco and all jumped out of the car. I parked next to a curb. Jentzen hopped out of the car and immediately right into the ankle deep snow that was previously untouched. The sort that just says, "Come on...Jump in me!"

I was a smidge irritated because it was cold and I was holding Keira and trying to make sure that Quaid and Ava weren't playing in the traffic and trying to get Jentzen out of the snow. So he came running down the curb coming to grab my hand....

And well we all know that curbs eventually end and we all know that there's about a 6 inch drop off. Turns out Jentzen wasn't aware of that. And it also turns out that the snowplow didn't get very close to the curb because the snow was at the same height at the curb for a few feet longer...You can see it already, can't you? He comes running up and hits that drop off and goes sprawling out into the 6 inch snow. He is covered from head to toe with snow. Luckily for me...he even had his coat unzipped! So he's standing there crying, trying to shake the snow off and because of his coat being unzipped, it was shaking his whole coat off. I could see that him pulling it together enough to walk himself into the store was not going to happen. So I grab him up and carry him screaming with his coat off in one arm, and Keira in the other arm. And that leaves me no arms to hang onto Quaid and Ava.

Normally this would be a worry for Ava. She has a tendency to start looking around, not pay attention to where she is going. I was just waiting for her to be taking a look at the birds and walking herself right into a parked car and then she would be laying in the snow crying and I would be out of arms. Thankfully Quaid and Ava were great and followed right along. I think if that had happened I would have gone straight back to the car and drove straight home as quick as possible.

Judging from that start I had no idea what would be waiting for me as I stroll through the isles of Costco with their oversized cart and 4 kids. Amazingly enough it went extermely smooth. And just when I thought I was a bit nuts...I checked out next to a lady that had 5 kids about the same ages of she was nuts!!

So now to the fun part...the Eden Prairie Mall has a play area that's for kids 48" and under and while Quaid is still short enough, I make the most possible use of it I can. The kids were excited about it and I managed to make it all the way through Kohl's without Jentzen's radar arm knocking anything off the shelves....which is a good thing because I really wasn't in the mood to buy any ugly broken Christmas ornament.

All was well playing. Keira just walked and walked. She's really getting good...even in her shoes.

Up comes Jentzen, "Mom my pants are falling down." A common problem with my no-bummed children.

I reach around to pull them up from the back and stick my thumbs in the waistband so I could roll them over. Baby soft cheeks is all I feel. Really?

Me: "Jentzen you have no undies on!" (quietly enough so no other mother will hear me ask my child why he isn't wearing any underwear)

J: "I know that." (thankfully he took note of my quiet tone and answered in the same tone)

Me: "Why not?"

J: "You told me to change."

Me: "Your pants, not to take your undies off."

J: "I dripped in them a little bit."

Me: "And you didn't go get a new pair."

J: "Nope!!"

And that was he ran.

And in case you were wondering, we made it out of Kohl's and home with no incident as well. Ava only walked into a center isle display once with no casualties :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Is it ok.... feed one of your children M&Ms for breakfast?

...then proceed to let the other two lick my batter bowl and fudge pan for their breakfast?

...all this while making the other one eat a banana and cheerios? wildly cheer after beating a 4 year old in a card game?

...hear a cry, pause for a moment to hear if it's a "I'm hurt cry" or just an "I'm irritated" cry...figuring out it's an "I'm irritated" cry, and then ask another child to help her because I'm not done vacuuming yet? vacuum up your kids broken crayons because I don't want to bend over to pick them up? spell "vaccuumm" like that and then spell check it? feed my kids sandwiches, peas, and carrots while I get the leftover pizza? be irritated with the fact that I have to explain why the word dumped really sounds like dumpt but the word hugged really sounds like hugged.

And it's only noon...

Saturday, December 5, 2009

It is 7:37am, I just watched the bus go by our driveway. Quaid could be on it...instead he's still sleeping :)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


This happened awhile back and I just found the pictures. Jentzen was getting dressed for the day. Came running in..."Mom there's something silly with my shirt!!

Yeah, that's Keira's onesie. And like any good mom would do....
I buttoned it up to get the full effect...Jentzen was not impressed!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Jentzen: "Look Mom...there's Daddy's work!"

Me: (with the knowledge that Nathan has never worked in this area, and he's currently a student) "What place?"

Jentzen: "Right there!"

Me: "That blue building with the yellow sign?"

Jentzen: "Yeah, Daddy works there!"

Best Buy...Jentzen thinks Nathan works at Best Buy. No other comment necessary.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Little sad faces are the cutest aren't they? She was a little upset over the malfunction of her shirt...see the button.....

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My baby girl turned 1 yesterday! It is quite shocking to me that one year has gone by and I still feel like she was just born. I have no words for it. Watching her grow has been the best, but at the same time I would go back to the beginning. Even the middle of the night feedings...I would do it all again in a heartbeat, knowing I would get to have a newborn again. Keira is the sweetest thing...I can't wait to see her personality come out in the next year...Take a trip down memory road with might need a tissue (well at least I do!!)

Sleeping great from one, and she has ever since...she was my earliest sleep through the nighter at 8 weeks.All the kids were enamored with her...they would always make sure they knew where she was and what she was doing.
And then when she actually started responding...they really had fun.
The older 3 would constantly compete on how many times they could make her smile.

I love the faces they pull when they don't know they're doing it!
Obviously she played her first card game of her life in the first year!
Sitting tall, chicken legs and all :)

Almost a crawl but not quite yet.
And then she was off...and has been cruising ever since. She is a quick one. She tucks her head down and goes as fast as she can every where she goes. The head down thing has gotten her a few bumps on the head!And again what would 1 year of life be without a little cleaning?

And the famous Oatmeal Fudge Bar was a must have!
She, as well as the other 3 have found a new favorite activity. Keira jumps in and the kids zoom her around the house in her little wagaon. Keira is now fully walking, still crawling if she's really in a hurry. I have a new little neice, Kate, who was born a few weeks ago. It's wild to look at her and then Keira and think that all that happens in one year. What will the next year bring? Who knows, but I can't wait to find out!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Minnesota Fun

We wouldn't truly be Minnesotan until we have been to the park when winter coats and hats are needed. When little fingers get so cold that monkey bars are not possible. No matter how cold it is outside, they still want to go to the park. And if I really let them have a say in it...they would be out there in their swimsuits running through the sprinkler at 40F. I wish I was adventurous as they are...we lose some of that in our old age. My trick is to tell them we are going early enough in the day when I'm not tired and before I have looked to really see how cold it is. Then they hold me to it. I told them, I don't have a choice.

So here we are, hats and all!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

The kids LOVE to make their own sandwiches. So they all (minus Quaid...he doesn't like to get his fingers messy) went at it one day. See the difference in quality? I found it somewhat interesting. Granted Ava is a year older, but still, it isn't easy to spread peanut butter on soft bread. So the above is Ava...below is Jentzen...

I think it's because Ava is a girl! Her lucky husband is going to have perfect PB&Js!!
And poor Quaid in the background...he was a little upset because he was making a turkey and cheese sandwich and he ripped his bread a little bit and it wasn't "perfect" so he didn't want to eat it.

So I guess I see my misson...lots of time with Jentzen in the kitchen...I want my boys to be able cook!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Who's Who?

Lately everyone has been saying how much Keira looks like Ava. At the start I didn't think she looked anything like Ava. I guess I have been noticing it a bit lately. So I thought I would pull out some pictures and see.

Pictures way back from Ava when she was 1 is much easier to find now that I have gone through and organized all my pics. They are now divided into pics of each kid and then further by each year. I decided that I don't scrapbook, never print any pictures off, and don't add many of them to my blog, I wanted something for the kids to have. So Shutterfly saved my day. I am printing off photobooks of every year for each kid. So I have done 2008 so far and am going to move back. So now each kid will have a whole series of for each year. And for those crazy scrapbookers out there....WAY CHEAPER and WAY LESS TIME!!

So what do you think? Are they sisters or what?

Ava is about 3 weeks older. Keira better get hooked up with some Rogaine and soon!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

This weekend my friends Jess and Michelle came for their tri-annual visit. Jess lives in SD and Michelle lives in Wisconsin so lucky me lives in the middle and doesn't have to drive. We started making our visits "crafting" weekends. We all pick something we want to make and well...we just sit and craft, after a few hours of shopping and eating of course.

This time, we decided to go to Hobby Lobby in Mankato. I've never been there before and was super excited to go. It was all I dreamed it to be. I could have spent hours there! Until I was a little disturbed by their inventory. All I really NEEDED was some paint for my canvas craft I had planned...but then I found something like these:

HOW PERFECT!! I could hang one with each of my kids letters in our entry for their coats. Yep, I NEEDED them!! So I looked, Yep, there's and A, and a J, and a K, and a.....and a....P....then an R...WAIT!! There was no Q. NO Q!! yes i know it's not the most popular letter, but really.

So I found my friends and were waiting in the checkout line and I explained my problem. They thought there would for sure be a Q...because after all, Who would ever need a Q? It wasn't that there just wasn't a Q in the Q bin, there wasn't a Q bin at all! It went from P and right next to that was R. So I looked at a different style. Same thing. And yet another style. SAME THING!! They had 4 different sets of alphabet wall hooks...not one of them with a Q bin!!


The ones in the picture above are weathered with a rusty beach look...not really what I wanted.

So now I was on a mission...I wanted those. I figured there must be skads and skads of people who sell them I went to browsing around for them. Nope, not as many as I thought. There are tons of letters to hang on the wall, but not so many that are coat hooks...I did find these which I loved:

But they only come in red...and guess what letter is not on their letter list....Q!!

Searching JC Penny brought up the lingerie section...I guess the word "hook" was most closely related with a bra hook??

And then I found these on someone's blog....PERFECT...I LOVED THEM! So I opened the link to their website:

KAPSTOCK means coat rack in whatever language they speak in the Netherlands. Dutch I think? Yeah so I was rummaging through the site to find something in English. I did somewhat find how to custom make your own lettering but this is what it said:

Generate your Letter Coat Hooks Price
Your Finished Letter Coat Hooks
Characters chosen: Q A J K
Price: £345.52 (exc VAT)

I honestly don't know what money they use there but pretty sure that's a lot of money for some coat hooks....and shipping...yeah that would probably be a lot!

So I continue on...if anyone can find what I'm looking for...I would be eternally grateful! And poor Quaid...I have a feeling he's going to be dealing with the "missing Q" situation all his life...and Jentzen...we'll he's going to love that special little Z in his name too :) Ava and Keira...count yourselves lucky!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I heard a quote once and I LOVE it!!

"If you don't like the painting, don't blame the canvas."

Isn't that great? Have I mentioned that before...if so sorry...

I think of that all the time when my kids are doing something that's not really my favorite quality of them. Is there some example I'm giving? Is there something in me that they're seeing, copying, following after? We had this little event happen the other day that leaves me remembering...I'm not the only influence in my house...

N: "Jentzen?"

J: "What!!"

N: "You say "Yes Daddy."

J: "Yes Daddy?"

N: (went on telling Jentzen something....)

K: (quick thinking) "Hey Honey?"

N: (in the same loud rude voice as jentzen) "What??"

And he stopped...he knew...We both laughed...

So if you see my kids doing something a little's totally Nathan!!

I love lists. I love making them, I love being organized, and even more so...I LOVE crossing things off the list.

And if you're wondering, yes I am one of those who will put things on the list that I've already done, just so I can cross them off. Dorky I know...but I know I am not the only one out there that does that.

But recently as mom of 4, I've learned that I have to be as productive with my time as I can and the time it takes to acutally sit down and write out a list is somewhat wasteful. So I've taken to the talent of mind-listing.

Yep, that's right...mind-listing. In the morning I mentally make a list of all things that have to be done that day, approximately what time I will do them that day, and remember them so I can mentally check them off my list, so even though it's not physical pen and paper...I have still checked them off in some form. I know, talented isn't it?

During the morning hours before the kids get up, I carefully tiptoe all around the house straightening up the leftover out of place things from the day before...all this while mind-listing for the day. So by the time the kids get up (which happens to be really early these days thanks to Day Light Savings...they still haven't figured out that they need to stay in bed for another hour) I am all ready with my plan of action.

So the other day it was about 3:30 in the afternoon. I was frantically scanning my mind-list. There must be a mistake. Did I lose my list? Did it get deleted? My list was empty!! I walked around the house, just walking around scanning everything I saw to see if it would reboot my mind-list operating software. It was 3:30...I still had 3 1/2 business hours left for the day until closing time...and yet there was nothing to do??

Laundry was done, kitchen was clean, dishes were done, kids were schooled, dinner ready to go in the oven. Sure there were a few things around the house that needed to be done...but I knew they were already scheduled on a future mind-list, so they could wait.

I must have looked silly, just wandering around my house...That NEVER happens...I'm always cramming about this time of day to get everything checked off that list by closing time. A mind-list left unfinished is just something that should never be done!!

And then I look and see my precious Ava honing up her mouse skills on the computer. And then it hit time with Ava (she needs it every day...sometimes twice). So I am really excited about this next part.

She is always begging me to play games with her...all day long every day. Which is fine by me...I love to play games too. But there are other things that need to be done. So we set times of the day that we are going to sit down and play games. We had already done that for the day but I thought...a mother with nothing to do...PLAY GAMES!

Me: "Hey Ava!"

A: "Yeah?" (while keeping one eye on the computer screen)

Me: (super excited) "Do you want to play cards with me?!?"

A: "Well I kind of want to finish this."

Me: (drop jawed) "What??? You always want to play games with me!!"

A: "Yeah, but I want to do this more."

I was feeling a bit rejected! Really? Trumped by some computer game!!

(Don't worry, I found something to do...I started a puzzle :)

Fast forward to 5:30. I'm in the kitchen getting dinner from the oven, plates out, forks out, dinner dished up so it could cool, Keira's dinner ready....busy busy busy.

My sweet Ava comes up to me in the midst of this....

"Mom, can you play a game with me now?"

"Ava, not now...I'm getting dinner ready, it's dinner time."

"Yeah but now I want to play!"

Friday, October 30, 2009

Well it's been a long time...too long. Every day I think, "I should blog that." or "I wonder where those pictures are?"

I know this guy, He's about 6 feet tall, brown hair, eyes that strangely look just like Ava's, he talks a little funny, drives a loud car that's brown...I mean white, and thinks I'm the coolest person ever. I think if that guy were to download all my pics, resize them all and put them in a neat little folder on my desktop titled "For Karen to Blog"...I would get things done a lot quicker :)

Until that happens just one little story...

Praise the Lord my kids have been super healthy lately. I can barely even remember that last time we've even had a bit of a sniffle! So yesterday morning Jentzen woke up with a cough. "Oh NO! We're not getting sick in this house!" I thought. I suggested that we all pray for Jentzen. Quaid hops right up, "Yeah come on, let's lay our hands on him!" And continued on with the most beautiful prayer for Jentzen. I was nearly in tears.

I often pray for my kids, for our home, for me (to make it through the day:) But I don't usually include them in this...reminded me that just because they are little doesn't mean that God can't use them!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

We went to the como zoo today with the kids. Since Nathan's mom was in the front seat...I was in the way back between Ava and Quaid. Riding along...chit playing...and then......

Q: "Do you smell that mom?"

Me: "Oh Quaid, that's disgusting!"

Q: (while taking a deep breath through his nose) "AAAAHHHHHH.....fresh toot!"

Me: (while trying not to breathe) "That is terrible!"

Q: "I just love fresh toot!"

And I was quite happy to know that daddy was not did make it all the way up to the front seat :)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Ava, like I've mentioned before, is always up first. She has always been my one who needs the least amount of sleep. So the first moments of my child filled day are spent with Ava...and usually Keira. Ava is always kind enough to turn the light on...all the way...when she wakes up.

We did get those dimmers installed for just a moment as that...when one kid is sleeping but you still need to do something in the room. Ava obviously doesn't see the need. If she's up, then for sure Keira should be too!

So I go on....I was feeding Keira and the whole house was still and quiet except for my sweet Ava. She sat down right next to me....

A: "Mom, guess what?"

Me: "What honey?"

A: "Grandma said that God put man here to take care of woman...yeah she said Quaid is supposed to be taking care of me. And yesterday he was NOT taking care of me. He hauled off and kicked me right in the back. And he left something there, grandma said there was something left there from him kicking me. He was NOT taking care of me and God said he should be taking care of me!"

Me: "Well that's too bad."

I love how Ava has learned that phrase..."hauled off and (insert some form of physical meanness) me. She didn't hear it from who knows where that came from!

Yep that was my only response.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I had my first heartbreaking moment with Quaid last night. Well not the first moment per say but the first of this type of hurt.

Quaid goes to Awana at a local church in our town. He absolutely loves it! He really likes going anywhere, any day at any time. I myself am a bit of a hermit so when the kids get to go out, it's a pretty big deal.

When he got dropped off, one of the leaders told me that he had a bit of trouble with the games. The group he's in is ages K-2nd grade. Quaid is 5 1/2 and a second grader is probably 8. That is a big age difference pertaining to physical abilities.

When I was putting Quaid to bed I asked him what the trouble was. His little head hung down, and with his little sad voice, he said the he was the last one in line every time and the first one that got out. He look so disappointed and defeated.

I'm not one that feels bad every time my kids are sad. It is a part of life the must be learned. Things are not always about them, things are not going to always be how they want them to be. I don't feel bad when they are sad that they only got 1 cookie instead of 3. I don't feel bad when they are sad because they were disciplined for something they did wrong. I don't feel bad when they are upset that they have to clean up their toys...but this was so different. He had done nothing was the left out kind of sadness. I tried to explain that they were just bigger than him, that he did his best and that's all that he had to do. He would be the "big kid" some day. That he was already the bigger kid compared to Jentzen. No matter my words, It was still the sad little hanging head with a small voice..."Okay mom," was all he could muster up.

As I think about it today...really it was a pretty trivial little thing. It was a first of many disappoinments he would face in the future. There was sure to be times in the future when he's not he winner, when he's picked on by someone else, when he's left out. It's my job to show him how to handle it and to encourage him...I know he will learn to deal with it and so will I. But yesterday was a first for us both. And I bet he's already handling it better than me! I'm still sad for him and I'm sure he's had a great day and has forgotten about it already.

And it's confirmed...their pain is much more tough on me than my own!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Ode to Deb #3

This was a super great idea!! Deb cooked some noodles in water with some green food coloring to make the seaweed. Good ole' hotdogs with one end cut in 4 to make the octopus legs. Also getting the short hot dogs would work a little better because they're not so top heavy...our poor squids were a little sleepy as you can see :)

Now the real talent was trying to make a ketchup face on the hot dogs. One should have figured out that putting ketchup on a wet hot dog might just slide right off, yeah well...we partially managed to get fairly decent eyes and smiles on them.

The kids LOVED them and thought it was the best lunch ever!

Monday, September 28, 2009

The kids saw grandpa down in the pumpkin patch one afternoon...(imagine that? where else would he be??)

The kids wanted to go see him so off they went on their bikes...Ava came running the house, I was on the phone. She was asking me if she could go with grandpa's squash or something like that. I said "fine" but not really knowing what I was saying fine to because I was talking to her, and talking on the phone at the same she went.

I try and keep an eye on them when they're down there to make sure they don't wander too far. Looking, kids....Well they'll turn up when they're hungry I guess...:)

Quaid came running in the house...

Q: "I'm just getting a drink mom, then I'm going to go down the road with Grandpa to deliver squash."

OOOHHHH Now I get it! I would not have told Ava she could go...who knows how far grandpa was going to go...and Ava's little legs wouldn't last that long!

Me: "No Quaid, you're not going to do that...where's Ava?"

Q: "She's down the road with Grandpa."

Me: "Where's Jentzen?"

Q: "Ummmm I don't know."

Me: " stay here Quaid don't go anywhere."

Looking, Jentzen....I didn't want to send Quaid off looking...then I would have three kids lost!

Then the phone mom....

Mom: "Did you know that Jentzen is over here?"

Me: "No, not exactly...I knew he was somewhere outside."

Mom: "Well he's over here looking for Quaid and Ava."

Me: "Great...send him home!"

Here comes Jentzen trotting through the field...Okay now I've got two more to go!

I figured Ava knew the way home, I'd just wait...and wait....and wait...and wait....

Okay it's been awhile now...I should probably go look for her. In the car we went and down the road...I found her and my dad about 1/2 mile down the road...Ava on her bike and grandpa pulling his wagon full of squash.

Ava looked quite relieved to see me.

A: "Mom! I told grandpa that we should go back home but he said no! He said we had to keep going! He had too much squash!"

Me: "That's okay. I thought you might be getting tired. I'll bring you home."

A: "I told him mom...I told him you would be "respecting" home. I told him you would be "respecting" me!!"

Me: "You mean expecting?"

A: "Yeah, expecting me home."

So there you have it...all three kids! What am I going to do when little Keira is out there running around with them?

Leashes....really long leashes!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I had an Uppercase Living party at my house on Tuesday night...SO FUN! And such fun stuff!!

Ava was able to join the party...because it was just for girls. It was getting near time and she came running to me....

A: "Mom, can I put one of my beautiful dresses on?"

Me: "Why do you need to change?"

A: She grabs a hold of her dress at the tummy area, pulls it out, and looks at me speechless with the look that says, "Duh Mom, as if I could be seen in this!?!?"

Me: "Fine go change your dress."

Part two of the party...

The boys were up with daddy in the bedroom supposedly watching a movie quietly...when I hear laughing, banging, jumping, more giggling, more jumping, more screaming...

I went up to give Nathan a bottle for Keira...I see Nathan hanging off the end of the bed, Quaid mid flight off the end of the bed, Jentzen running around to get back on the bed, and pillows all around the room. The noise all made sense now!

Part three of the party...

I finally hop into bed for the night..

Me: "What did you do?

Nath: "What do you mean?"

Me: "There are crumbs everywhere in the bed!"

Nath: "Yeah I brought up some treats and the boys picked cookies to eat."

Me: "Yes, I can see that...all over MY side of the bed!"

Nath: (with a huge smirk) "Yep."

Two nights later...I am still brushing crumbs from my sheets!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sneaky Snack

I just got done shaking up my Parmesan cheese jar, you know, to break up the chunks.....with the top OPEN! (Use your imagination) Yeah so I thought I should take a break from the kitchen for awhile and share a little story from today...

Ava: "Mom!!! (while running in from outside)

Me: "What happened?"

Ava: "Quaid told me that birds ate my snack! But I know that they didn' was Quaid!!"

Me: "Birds ate your snack?"

Ava: "No! Quaid just told me that...I know it was him who sneaked all my snack!! It was not the birds!!"

Sneaky little Quaid....your sister is getting too wise for you!!

Monday, September 21, 2009


As a mom I wish I could remember everything...every little funny thing they've done or said. But it's just not possible. When conversations come up about my child hood...I always question my mom..."How can you NOT remember that??"

Yeah well, I'm there. I think back to my kids as babies...which was just a few years ago and I can't remember...I really can't! I remember some things, specific moments, things they did...but not everything and it's frustrating.

And if you ask my husband...he'll say it's a bit more than things about the kids that I forget. I used to blame it on just being pregnant.....or I just had a baby....or I have a lot going on any particular week....but now I've given in to the fact that it's just all the time...and doesn't seem to be getting any better. I've always been one to be on top of everything. Not so much anymore.

An email from Nathan while I was working..."So how did your van drive to work this morning?"

I'm thinking, "Great..Wow! How considerate of him, checking on my safety( we've been having some problems with the van lately...what a blessing to have a mechanic for a husband) making sure everything on the van was sounding better etc."

Then I read the next line..."Now how am I supposed to go anywhere with the kids? You took the wrong car! Remember we just talked about it last night!?!"

Oh yeah...that's right...we did just talk about that before I went to bed...slipped my mind :)

Lucky for dear Nathan has learned to laugh it off...most of the time though....

Quaid on the other hand has been my little helper lately.

Q: "Mom can I have (insert anything that a child normally asks for)?"

Me: "Yep sure." (busy around the kitchen doing something else and then coming to sit down at the table.)

Q: "Mom...Are you forgetting something?"

Yep sure enough....I had forgotten. I have to laugh at his creative questioning. The kids are constantly told to not ask more than once for something. He gets around that quite nicely.

It used to bother me...but I thought one day....

These are the things I NEVER forget:

to kiss my kids
to hug my kids
to tell them I love them
to read to them
to make sure they are fed
to make sure they have clean clothes to wear
to make sure they are warm
to make sure they get to play and have fun
to make sure they learn
to pray with them

So I've learn to let go...I may lose it on some day to day things...and I may not remember every little cute thing my kids have done...but the important things...I will know that I didn't forget :)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Way back when...on August 20th...Jentzen turned 3...I almost forgot. No not really but we're just not that into birthdays. They come and go with not much fuss at the Walkingtons. But I feel I must post something to save myself from an argument from a 15 year old Jentzen thinking he went from 2 and skipped right to 4!

For awhile it seems like every week is someones birthday. May, June, July, August, October, and November all have 1 birthday each in our's almost every week!?!?

Did you catch which month is missing...Yep September...September is the month that brought about no more birthdays for us :) Nathan holds this month very near and dear to his heart I suppose...he will always remember the beautiful month of September.

Back to Jentzen...Grandma of course could never let this happen. How could we deprive our kids of it?!?! So thanks to Grandma, Jentzen got some cake and presents. It was the weekend we were at the cabin with our we got down to the cabin about 9pm...quick shoved some cake in their yappers, tore open some presents, and went to bed :)

Happy Birthday Jentzen :)

Friday, September 4, 2009

When I'm gone, it's good to know that there's another little mother hen taking my place.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


I am sitting here, reading other people's blogs while listening to Quaid, sitting on the white throne, doing his business...while screaming like a girl at the top of his lungs to Keira, only to have her scream as high and loud as she can right back at him...It's like a game to them....and now I'm hearing Quaid, "Gross, No Keira!" HHMMMM one should think I should go check out what's happening huh!!

I go clothes shopping for the kids once a year. Sunday was Ava's day :) She loves to shop so she was pretty excited about it too. We go to my staple store...Once Upon a Child. I love it there because I can obey my clothes rule. $5 max price for anything....well except for jeans....hard to find them for $5 or less. So I raise the price on those to $7.50.

There have been a few times I have broken my rule for a "To Die For" shirt for Ava. Sorry boys but there's nothing that interesting made for boys that warrants a rule breaker.

But I was surfing ebay looking for some shoes for Ava...I want an Ugg like pair of boots for her...and look what I found......

I LOVE LOVE LOVE them!!! I watched a pair on ended up selling for $57. Really?? $57...there are people out there who would spend $57 on a pair of shoes for a 4 year old!??!?!? That blows my mind! I grumble on having to spend $18 on shoes for her!

Now me on the other hand (they make them in my size too :) I would spend that much on an adult pair of shoes....but right now with one student/unemployed bread-maker of the house...not a wise decision. Bummer...maybe next season!!

Although maybe they are $57 for a 4 year old...yep you're right...that's makes them $120 for a 28 year old! Really...those Aussies are just darn greedy aren't they?!?! All they are is some skin off a sheep's bum and some stiching and slice of old tire on the bottom right? And I have the same rule for myself for clothes shopping....I just don't do it...and when I have to, I usually just find whatever I can for $5 or less at the end of the season sell out and that will have to do....I don't buy "trendy" clothes...I stick with the classics that I can wear year after year. As long as it serves it's purpose and is clean...who cares. Besides that...I have way more fun shopping for my kids than I do myself!

I took one of our 17 year old youth group girls jean shopping with me. She had no idea what she was getting into. 4 stores and 24 paris of jeans later...I finally found one that I love. The last pair I bought was 3 years ago...and it will be at least another 3 years before my next pair...and take a guess where I found them....the first place I should have gone....Starts with "B" and ends with "uckle" Jealous Mel???

If anyone is selling a pair of those gorgeous boots from those money hungry Aussies out there...I'd give ya $20...going once....going twice...any takers??

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Why is it that telling one child not to do something is a license for the next child to do that exact same thing within the next 30 seconds??

It's as if my saying, "Please don't do that" to one child says, "Great idea why don't you try it too" to the next!!

Monday, August 31, 2009

I was getting ready to head out of the house for an afternoon away with my best shopping partner...Ava. She loves going with me in fact the day before I was going south of Mankato to go pick up my 1/4 of a cow. So that means a little over an hour in the car...out for 10 minutes, and back in the car for over an hour...BORING! So we had the following conversation...

A: "Where are you going mom?"

Me: "To get some meat."

A: "I want to come."

Me: "No Ava, not this time."

A: "Please I really want to come." (We are also working on only asking 1 time and not arguing when she gets an answer...REALLY REALLY hard on this one."

Me: "No, Ava, I already told you's going to be a big long car ride anyway and that's it, no fun at all."

A: "I like car rides."

Me: "Ava, no, it's going to be boring."

A: "But mom, I LOVE BORING!!!"

So Anyways, back to the main point of the story...I was giving Nathan the instructions for the kids...yes after 4 of them, he still needs to ask...I love you honey :)

He was as always, mixing up his coffee....

I saw him digging around in his sugar, milk mixture that was awating the hot water to top off the coffee...and came out with a little something special..

N: "Oh look! A fly!"

(Our house, as mentioned infested with flies...because the kids NEVER shut the door...despite my constant nagging...there are 3 of them in a row...a little bit of a pain even in my opinion)

K: "That is disgusting!"

N: (pouring his water, finishing off the coffee making process)

K: "Oh GROSS!! You're going to still drink that?!?!"

N: "Yeah so?"

K: "It had a fly in it?"

N: "As opposed to all the fly guts that are all over everything else from you swatting them everywhere?"

K: "Well at least they were alive and not dead and rotting!"

N: "This one was alive too!"

K: "That is disgusting...and I'm blogging that!!" (While watching him drink down a big gulp)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

It's been another long while since I've posted. It's till that darn picture thing...I feel like posting without a picture is kind of a "cheater post."

We had a GREAT weekend at the cabin with my college buddies. It was the first time we've invited our kids and husbands along. It's usually girl only....with the exception of me. It's always at my house and I can't kick my kids out for the I am still "mom" but as minimally as possible. We girls had a good time...the kids pretty much. Ava made a new best friend with Michelle's daughter Elayna who is 3. They had their own babies on their hips the whole weekend...very cute.

The husbands...well we haven't gotten the full report back from them yet :) We tend to resort back to college life when we're together and try to escape the mature responsible role when we are together!

We did manage to keep all the kids safe and sound and injury free for the whole we must have been somewhat responsible...although Keira did have one little somewhat life threatening incident....well to be honest it was pretty dangerous and did make my well as everyone else's heart skip a beat or two. I'm not going to go into it...well because my mom reads this and I'm trying to avoid the "mom" speech!!

Other than that...not much has been happening here the past few weeks. A couple of trips to the park and beach....ahh the beach. By that I mean the stinky, green, weedy, "lake" I could almost spit across with dirty sand that really shouldn't even be sat on. I can't help it every time I sit on a "beach" (it really shouldn't even be called's a disgrace to the word) imagine the Australian beaches that I've been spoiled with. Maybe a bit silly, but I sit, close my eyes for a second and pretend.....and then I open them. Disappointed. There is no comparison to the ocean beaches...I love them...I could sit for hours and just watch and listen. Someday we will be back there...semi-permanently I hope. I would love to spend a few years there after my kids are older...maybe out of the house. But I would have to come could never be totally permanent. One could only live so long without such things as velveeta chip dip, fruit pizza, and Chipotle...and yes even winter....or at least fall. I do love the smell of winter air and the pink sky after a snowfall.

Kids and school are still going pretty good. I love love love to see them's the coolest things to see them figure things out, to see your efforts pay off, to see them's the best. I am still keeping up with my night time reading routine. I actually look forward to it myself.

I used the Sonlight Readers list for books. The first few were pretty good...then I came across this one titled "The Family Under the Bridge." I think the book is just fine if you're 10...but it was on my Kindergarten reading list. The book is set in Paris...there's the first problem...who can pronounce a French word?? NOT ME!! It was about a kids don't even know what that is....and if I told them, the concept of being homeless to them is a little bit of a reach for them. Something about some gypsies...more French words...some kids...more French words...and finding jobs. Yes I know it's probably good to read a bit above their level but really?!?!

But nonetheless, I did understand the book and I just had to finish it to see what actually happened. So I read as fast as I could, totally slaughtering all the French words, just to finish so I could see what happened. Guaranteed the kids have no idea of anything that happened in the book...but I am just that much more enlightened!!

Let's hope that the next book on the reading list is a bit better than that!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Remember how I said Garden Partner would write a great blog about our carrots...Well she came through...and as a bonus has started up a little contest....with a GREAT PRIZE!!!

So hop on over via the link below...and enter the contest. All you Aussies, just because you're across the globe doesn't mean you're out of can enter too! The prize is good worldwide!!

Lazy Lazy

yeah I's been a long long time. I've got some things...but again. The picture thing. I think about it and then I say, maybe tomorrow I'll do that!

I have been a little occupied with some other things....

*Harvesting, Washing, cutting, peeling, chopping, cooking, packaging our ?? (she's having a contest about the number so head over there) lbs of carrots!!! (More on that later...I'm sure my garden buddy will write a fabulous blog on that!!!)

*Washing, shredding, packaging 50 cups of shredded zucchini....thanks dad!

*Ordering some new Uppercase Living stuff...LOVE IT...I will for sure not be too lazy to put up those pics...I'm sooooo excited!!!

*Rescuing Keira from the stairs when she sneaks up them, from Ava when she things she can carry her around, from the chunks of carrots left over on the floor....

*Now cleaning and packing, getting ready for the weekend away with my two college friends Jess and Michelle...SUPER EXCITED!!! We get together twice a year for a girls weekend but this time we've decided to head to the cabin with all our families too! We'll still have to find some time away for our bi-annual girl talk!

Next week I'll do better!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

So after my great original garden update post Deb gave me another idea....

"You might as well just copy the other one is about your kids."

A GREAT IDEA!!! Another post with minimal work...I love it!!

Friday, August 7, 2009

So I've been meaning to give an update on the garden for quite some time now but I just haven't gotten around to it...and this is why...I'm just going to say "sorry" and "thanks" to Deb before I even get started!

I don't mind blogging at least the writing the picture part is always the hinderance. When I think of getting out the camera, snapping a few shots, then downloading the pictures, resizing them all so they don't take an hour to load, then attaching them to the blog, and then trying to get them all in the right spots...well that just sounds like way too much work for me.

Just writing about the garden wasn't good enough. I could tell you what it looks like but really you need to see it!

So I knew at some point Deb would do it, so why waste all the time doing it myself when she would do it, and do a much better job than I would...and look it happened!! So here it is...OUR update on the garden!!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

So I always thought that I would be ready to be done having kids. The baby stage has never been my favorite and I knew I wanted lots of babies but was excited to have them not be babies anymore. I was so looking forwards to the big kids stuff...playing ball, riding bikes, playing games etc...

But I find myself getting a bit clucky again. A few weeks ago my co-worker had a beautiful baby girl and I just happened to be working so of course I went up to hold the little one who was just 1 day old. Oh boy, that was a mistake. The truth is I LOVED having a baby again with Keira...and I thought maybe we should give it a go once the next day I sent my hubby a little message...

"Oh honey, don't you think we should have another?"

N: "We already HAVE a baby."

Me: "No we don't....we have a big baby...I want a little baby."

N: "Well sure you can...I hope he's a real nice guy!"

Me: "....." (with mouth wide open...nothing coming out)

That was the end of the conversation...Nathan is always quite quick quick it's irritating!!

So the next day I thought maybe one more nudge....

Me: "So...really we should have another little baby...they're so cute...and look how easy Keira was!!"

N: "Alright fine...I'll make you a deal....."

Oh this was going to be good, I could just tell!!

N: "If I can get a dirt bike for me and one for the can have another baby."

Me: "....." (with mouth wide open...nothing coming out..AGAIN!!)

Oh that's just great...can you just see the conversation years down the road....

Baby #5: "Mom, how come you had 5 kids?"

Me: "Because I love having kids!!"

N: "No really #5...I made your mom a deal....go on tell 'em."

Me: "Yeah that's right...I paid $5000 for you! Daddy got some dirt bikes and I got you!"

I have a feeling that wouldn't go over that we'll be sticking with four for now.....although I do have until Sept 1st to do some mind changing...guess what happens on that day!?!?!?!

Thursday, July 30, 2009


So not much has been happening that is really worthy of writing that will be really exiting, funny or here goes some random tidbits...

Keira is now in full sprint on all 4's. She has even made it up the toy room stairs by herself, all 3 of them. Now I don't have to deal with the following:

"Mom, Mom, can Keira please come in and play with us? We want to play with her."

"Sure, she can, she would like that." (while carrying her in and sitting her next to them)

A flat 30 seconds later the kids go running through the kitchen and up the stairs.

"Hey I thought you were going to play with Keira?"

"We did, now we're done. We want to play upstairs now."

"WWWWAAAAAAAAA!!" (coming from little miss Keira crying at the bottom of the stairs because she got left all alone.

Jentzen has been expanding his vocabulary by telling me the food I cook is "too nasty" and that I'm a "naughty mommy" when I tell him no.

Ava has learned to ride her 2 wheeler and now instructs Jentzen how he should ride his bike with training wheels on it because "he's a little boy" and she is "a big kid" now.

Quaid spends a lot of time every day drawing pictures. He came in one day to show me a picture of him and daddy...

"Quaid, that's a great picture! Daddy will love it!"

"Yeah, I know!"

(while examining the picture...I saw...well...something)

"What is that?"

"Those are my legs."

"And what is that line in the middle?"

(with a cheeky grin) "That's my winky!"

With that final comment, I am speechless.

Monday, July 27, 2009

This was another project day. This was especially a great one becuase it was totally non-messy. It was foam boards and little foam letters. All they had to do was pull the little papers off the back and stick them on.

When I think of project, I think of messy. Whether it be glue, sparkles, paint, cutting, they all say "huge mess" to me. I struggle with not doing things with the kids because of what it might cost me. Even meal times once in a while I ponder what would be the cleanest thing I could give them because I don't really feel like cleaning up after them...even if that means sacrificing a bit of nutrition once in a while. Bad hey!! Oh the truths of motherhood!!

They had a great time with these and had them hung on their doors for weeks.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I've been noticing that most my stories involve Quaid and Ava. They do talk more. Jentzen does seem to just kind of do his own thing. Our interaction involves more actions than words....spinning him around in circles, tickling him till he can't breath, and carrying him around upside down is the way we spend most of our bonding moments. But he did give me a chuckle the other day.

All the kids were having their snack. Pretzels...YUM...Jentzen's favorite!! Ava got down to go do something. I saw out of the corner of my eye, Jentzen's little hand sneak over and steal Ava's snack. I decided to ignore it at that moment. Sometimes as a mom, we do that, don't we??

So Ava came back up to the counter....

A: (giving Jentzen the look) "Hey Jentzen! You took my snack!"

Me: (thinking to myself) "Dang it she I have to do something!!"

Me: "Jentzen you can't take Ava's snack. You don't take things that aren't yours."

J: "But she didn't see me!"

Even though he may not carry on the conversations like the others do...he is just as wise!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A: "How old are you mom?"

Me: "I'm twenty eight!!"

A: "Wow Mom you are going to get dead!!"

J: "What are you after twenty eight?"

Me: "After twenty eight comes twenty ....." (while looking at Quaid...every moment is a teaching moment)

Q: "Nine!!"

J: Whoa Mom!!! You're really going to be dead!!!"

Monday, July 20, 2009

On Friday evening, we were all sitting around the table eating dinner...and here the conversation goes...

Q: "Mom, is it Monday tomorrow?

Me: "No it's Saturday, then there's Sunday, and then comes Monday."

Q: "Oh cause on Monday we're going to grandmas."

Me: "Yes you are because I have to go to work."

Q: "Yeah and we're going to mmm.........." (stopped dead in his speech)

A: (super excitedly) "Yeah we're going to...."

Q: "Ava!!! No, it's a surprise!!"

A: (whispering to Quaid as if she didn't realize I could still hear her) "Oh yeah, grandma said we couldn't tell mom, didn't she!"

Q: (looking at me curiously to see if I was catching on) "No we can't, it's a surprise."

A: "Can you guess, Mom?"

Q: "Ava, you can't guess's a surprise!"

A: "Oh yeah." (whispering in my ear) "Can you think of something that has sprinkles on it?"

Me: " I don't know? I'll have to wait and see."

Q: (overhearing Ava) "You can't guess mom, but it does have sprinkles!"

A: "Come on mom, can you guess? It starts with birth."

Me: "I'll just wait and see until Monday."

Q: "Ava it does not, it starts with cup."

A: (Leaning over as close to my ear as she could get, whispering as quiet as she could) "It's a birthday cake!"

The poor girl just couldn't resist!

Q: "Ava!!!! It's a cupcake and now you ruined the surprise!!!!"

What Ava knows....we all know...take note!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

T Ball Fun

Finally pics of Quaid and Tball. He played in June for 6 nights in the park. He had a great time.
Sorry, I am no the family photographer. This is Nathan's job but he wasn't here so you all will just have to settle for my sub-par effort. Just to go a bit off topic.....Sub-par...I got to thinking about this. Now in golf sub-par is good really the expressions should be over-par. It doesn't make sense...and it's kind of bothering I think you have all just witnessed me making a life changing decision...I will no longer use the term sub-par. It really doesn't make sense and shouldn't be ANYONE, anyone intelligent at least:) Since I have a feeling that making that my life's mission might be a little bit of a poor use of time and in the end a little disappointing. I'll just stick with myself! Ok so back to Quaid after that little vent...

This girl gives quite the look....she wasn't that impressed with me wanting to take pics of her...but then
What a poser...check out those pipes!!
I'm not sure whether Quaid liked the T ball or the playing in the park after better!!

The little thing is trying to escape already!!! Guess she tired out mid route!

So since I have spent so much time ignoring my blog because of said, "Cabin Trips" Just thought I'd post a few of my favorite photos. We spend a lot of time just sitting on the boat in the lake. So peaceful...I love it!!
Ava dancing away while her brother "feeds the fish." (No not really but looks like it, doesn't it??)
Nathan practicing to be a boat model. Any scouts out there? You don't want to miss this one!!!
Keira has been awesome on all of our weekends. Getting occasional naps in the boat, being woke up at any hour for another trip on the boat. Keeping her up till 10pm so we can have a night time cruise...she's the best!!!
This was a happy pose...Ava's a little behind...still back on the "Silly Face" pose.
The kids favorite place to be...hanging with dad!
In the evening, it gets a little buggy...Quaid took it on himself to kill them all with his "sand toy" aka: the kitchen spoon. He was quite happy with all his kills in full view on the back of the spoon. All of you coming to the cabin in the future...might want to stick with finger food:)
Ava, enjoying a little snack after all her kills.....
And where was Jentzen this whole time? Of course in his usual spot, taking a nap. He laid face down and slept on the boat for 1.5 hours every day. And was usually in this spot when he wasn't sleeping! Silly Boy!
I'm not really a water person. Going in knee deep is plenty to me. But Ava wanted to go tubing...what a sacrifice I made huh!A perfect way to end the weekend!

Quaid amazes me every day with his maturity. Yes he is only 5, but when my past 5 years has been filled with lots of little ones needing me for every single thing they do each and every day...every little bit that Quaid can do on his own is a huge help. I have always tried to make use of every ability of the kids as soon as they're able. We all pitch in to get things done. Being needed, important, and involved are a few things that make a family strong. They have a sense that they belong and the family couldn't operate without them. Cleaning, dishes, laundry, helping with Keira are all things we do as a family....don't worry we're not always working. There are lots of times of book reading, game playing, ball playing, gardening, swinging, bike riding which they all do together.

Quaid has stepped up huge in our family. He's such a help. 4 year olds seem to help with joy. They are excited that they can do such "big person" things. But now that he is seems more a of a drag than a joy. I now get a little attiude when asked to help. In my opinion doing a good thing with the wrong attitude or motive is not a good thing at all. I think it's better to do nothing than do it without the proper heart behind it.

I don't read many parenting books...I think 85% of them are so obvious or absolute junk. I have however read a few, and in one book I learned something profound to me. Maybe considered obvious by some but to me it changed how I think about parenting. Our job is to parent character not behavior. It's so easy as parents to simply correct things they are doing...lately for me it's been not jumping on the furniture (that behavior has come up again in full swing), and closing the door when they go outside (we currently have residence with approximately 500 flies...YUCK!!). We can get so caught up in saying, "No don't do that." I learned that childish behaviors they will outgrow...yes they should be corrected but not always will jumping on the couch bring them such excitement. But character will be with them for a lifetime and affect every decision they make.

So when I tell them to not jump on the furniture, sure maybe they get right down but with what attitude. It is with a "Oh fine mom" with a big eyeroll. Is just the fact that they have listened good enough? Not in my house. And that is where the challenege begins, shaping their character of how they treat adults, respect for others, compassion, understanding, patience. I admit that sometimes at some moments just getting obedience is enough. It shouldn't be, but sometimes that's all I can do just then!

But then I see pictures like this, my little man helping daddy do very important work in the garage. Precious isn't it...I just love the image.

He just wants to learn, to be a big strong man like daddy. He could learn all the life skills, knowlege of how to do anything, have every title behind his name and without character to guide it, what's the point of all these little teaching moments? Even as I sit writing this, a ton of "character things" are running through my mind. All the things I desire of my be honest, caring, compassionate, giving, respectful, joyful, and the list could go on. It's a little I have decided each week (or maybe longer if needed:) to pick a fruit of the Spirit (I figured that was a good place to start) and really teach them what it means and how they can display that every day. Just like daddy has these teaching times, and I am teaching them their ABC's and 123's...I need to always remember what life lessons go hand in hand with just head knowledge. It's in writing, now I have committed myself. I'll hopefully be back with some results next week!!