Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Quaid: "Mom, can I go outside to play."

Me: "Let's check the weather." (as I hop on the Internet to see how warm it is outside...sad that I save myself from getting up and actually opening the door.)

Quaid: (still not technologically savvy) "Okay, I'll check the weather" (opening up the front door)

Quaid: (shutting the door) "Yep, smells like cow poop mom."

It seems we have only two different kinds of weather here in the sticks...Smelling like manure or not smelling like manure!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Bedtime Secrets

Once again, bedtime came one evening last week. I was walking upstairs with Keira and Ava to put them both to bed. As we were walking up...

Ava: "Mom you don't have to pray for us tonight."

Me: "Really, how come?"

Ava: "Because I don't want you to, and you can tell dad he doesn't have to pray for us either."

Me: "Are you sure? Okay"

An odd comment coming from my girl who ALWAYS wants just one more kiss, or one more cuddle or one more book read...but hey, maybe she had a bit of the "big girl fever"...not needing mom anymore...I just continued on with getting Keira ready while the other kids hopped into bed.

Then mid-diaper change Quaid comes in...

Quaid: "Mom, you don't have to come in and kiss me goodnight."

Me: "Why?"

Quaid: "I'm really tired mom, I'm going right to sleep."

Me: "Really?"

Quaid, "Yeah and you can tell dad he doesn't have to come in either....I'm really tired"

hhhhmmmmmm...both kids have told me not to come into the room. Do you think just maybe there might be a reason why they don't want us to come in??

Me: "Is there a reason you don't want us to come in Quaid?"

No answer to that...he had shimmied his little self right out of the room before I could finish....

I then go walking into their bedroom (obviously they are up to something) and find Ava's pillow and blankets, Quaid's pillow and blankets under the bed....and what else was under there??

Quaid and Ava!!!

Even though they were being sneaky little things...at least I know that they haven't grown out of their bedtime kisses!!

So, I've been slack. I know it...no excuses so here goes after a long blogcation....

I was cleaning the bathroom this past Tuesday as I always do. I clean one thing per day...makes it so much easier...so Tuesday is bathroom day :)

The kids bathroom was all clean, I even emptied the garbage...it was full of toys. Why toys you ask??? Well for all you moms to be out there who intend to bathe your children....this is for you :

Bath toys....such a crock...don't be misinformed! First of all, who ever created the squeezy squirty toys obviously did not have that long of a testing trial with the items in question. Sure it all seems great for a one use sort of a thing. Yep they work, suck the water in and squirt the water out. Kids are in the tub, already wet..what a great idea!!!

But.....Not all the water gets squirted out each time...so after prolonged use you can guess what happens...yeah moldy slime builds up because the opening isn't big enough to dry all the water out quick enough so it just sits and turns to mold! Mind you, the opening is however big enough to squirt out this black slimy yuck into the bathwater which then floats around probably getting swallowed by my kids who use bath time to take their entire weekly need for hydration.

Soooo.....all our slimy bath toys went in the garbage.

Back to the main point of the story. The garbage can WAS clean until......

I went up there a few days later...happened to catch a glance in the can...Can you guess what I saw???

Oh Gross!!! Jentzen decided that he had full control of his little "hose" And decided that the garbage can was a great place to let it all out!!!

I called Jentzen into the bathroom...and he knew exactly what the issue was. Man that kid can give the cutest little guilty face!!!

And his answer to the question, "Jentzen why did you pee in the garbage can?"

Well duh mom, isn't it obvious???

"I don't know."

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

So Ava and I were counting...I was saying the number and she was repeating me. So on I go...

Me: "......Thirteen"

Ava: "Thirteen"

Me: "Fourteen"

Ava: "Fourteen"

Me: "Fiveteen"

Ava: "Fiveteen"

Me: "Sixteen"

Ava: "Sixteen"

Did you catch that??

Wait a second...Fiveteen?? Fiveteen?? I can't believe I just said that!! And it took me all the way past sixteen to even notice that it was wrong??

I can understand Ava saying that maybe, but me?!?!

Oh the horror....and yet again...I plan to homeschool my children????

Sunday, March 22, 2009

What is it with kids and mud? There is something about it that screams, "Jump in me, sit in me, run through me, soak your clothes in me."

I remember my sister who has spent many years living in Ecuador. She told me how even though the cultures are very very different, kids are still the same. They make up the same games....you know the one we have all played....Putting pillows all over the floor and then jumping across them, not touching the floor because if we did, we would be "out", eaten by a crocodile, or burnt by the fire underneath? This is a game that is not taught but just created...and how interesting...kids no matter where you are in the world, kids are the same, they like to ride bikes, make up games, and of course...play in the mud!!! So I rest easy...my kids are normal.

Although my kids seem to find that playing with mud right on our front step is the very best place...a bit annoying, but I have let it go. They are having fun, being creative and really...a good hose down when it gets a little bit warmer will take care of it all!

But then there was another day around our house....another muddy day......and oh no...it wasn't my kids this time....Seriously....what is this?????
Yes it is Nathan's car. And Yes....it's supposed to be white!! And no Nathan was not doing this alone. There was actually 2 others that joined Nathan this day. So there were three boys...I mean "men"....that were spinning around through the field trying to get their cars as dirty as possible.

And yet there was even a sadder part of the story. Of course as sensible wife...I ask why?

"We're doing a photoshoot for a car contest on the Subaru forum." (A very logical reason in his head I'm sure)

uummmm suuure....a "photoshoot" for a "car contest" yeah honey, I get it a "reason" to go hotdoggin' through the mud with your friends.

I guess the "kids" never grow up!!!

PS...Nathan spent at least 3 hours outside trying to hose his car off and still didn't get it all out...hhhhmmmm was it really worth it????

Saturday, March 21, 2009

So Quaid comes into my office...

Q: "Mom, can I have a piece of tape? I need to hang this on my door."

Me: "What is it?"

Q: "It's a sign that says no girls allowed."

It's started already!

There is a moose (??not sure about that one) and daddy on the bottom and on the top are all the people who can't come in his room!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

People often ask me if I ever want to live in Australia...or why did we choose to live here in Minnesota....so here is my photo story as to why we chose to live in good ole' Jordan Minnesota.

First of all...who would want to wake up, head out to the balcony, and be forced to look at this every morning....

When I could wake up to this.....

Who would want to spend their time playing like this all day...

When we could be doing this...

And we all know about the fierce animals they have Down Under.....do you see??? Nathan's about to lose an eye!!!

And of course there's more.....wouldn't want to get tangled up with these creatures!!!

I'm pretty sure I would get really sick of doing this every day....

And on the one day a year that it's not sunny and warm....there's no way I could get the kids to come here again!!!

No thanks...I'll stick to looking like this...

And this...

looks much safer than this...don't you think?

And I think this...
looks like much better exercise and way more fun than this....does anyone even play badminton anymore???

So there you have it.....You'll never see me doing this again....

I'll stick to this...

Funny Times

On Monday we were on our way home from dinner out. Nathan had Quaid in his car and I had the other 3. When I got home, Nathan told me of his conversations with Quaid....I'll try to get it close...I'm sure will let me know if I don't :)

Quaid: "Hey dad, wanna hear a joke?"

(I didn't even know Quaid knew what a joke was!)

N: "Sure."

Q: "Why did the elephant fall out of the tree?"

N: "I don't know, why?"

Q: (giggling) "Because he was dead!!"

(Quaid is learning the concept of "dead" and therefore everything with the word dead is high on his radar)

Q: "Wanna hear another one?"

N: "Sure, Quaid."

Q: "Why did the bee get married?"

N: "Why?"

Q: "Because he found a honey!!!"

I know, maybe they're not that high on the "funniest joke list" but we were totally cracking up. He just came up with that out of the blue, and did a great job telling us. He was sure to tell me also when we got home. It truly is the little things that bring joy to a parent!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

To set the scene... Keira's in the tub, I grabbed the camera, made one of those huge cheesy smiles and mumbled some high toned "Mom" sounding baby talk to get her to smile...which leads me to a thought...

Why is it that everyone acts like babies can only hear the highest pitch silly voice we have and since they don't understand words, it's necessary to babble on and on incoherently.

Anyways, I took a shot. What a classic look....so now it's your turn...let's hear your best caption.

Monday, March 16, 2009

We have two sets of friends that have a girl Ava's age and a boy Jentzen's age...so guess who's left out. Yep poor Quaid. The first time this patricular family came over, I won't name names. The kids were all playing...so I thought and then Quaid came slowing tredging over like he had bricks in his shoes, his head hung low, half slumped over with the saddest look on his face.

Me: "What's wrong? Aren't you having fun playing?"

Q: "No one is playing with me."

He crawled up on daddy's lap and sat there for the rest of the night :( The girls were playing girly and the little boys were far too immature for my Quaid.

A while later our other friends came over with their kids...the same age as Ava and Jentzen. So this time Quaid was a little bit older and little bit wiser. If he couldn't play with them he was going to be sure that he was included in their play.

The girls came running......screaming.....

A: "Quaid is being a tiger and we don't like it!!"

Other girl: "yeah, he's chasing us!"

A: "He's taking our dolls!"

Yes, it was true...my boy was the one picking on the girls!!

He was spoken to many many times that night about not picking on the girls. I know he was just trying to be included but really....

So bring on another night with the first couple when Quaid was feeling a bit left out. We forewarned him that picking on the girls was not going to be allowed. He had been running and running around the house he came in huffing and puffing for the conversation.

Daddy: "Son, there will be no picking on the girls tonight."

Q: "Dad, I'm too sweaty to pick on anyone! I won't!"

So I thought that was the end of that.

It all started up again.

A: "Mom, Quaid is trying to fight our babies and we don't like it!! And Jentzen is being a dragon and getting us!!"

Yes, that's right. He was all dressed up in his Incredible Hulk costume with a mask on, yeliding his sword chasing them through the kitchen. And now he has joined with his little brother into terrorizing his sister and her friend.

Me: "Quaid, what did I say about picking on the girls?"

Q: "Not to."

Me: "Yes Quaid. You are the big brother, you're supposed to be protecting your sisters."

Q: "from the dragons?"

I could see it then...the little mind ticking away. I could imagine what thoughts were emerging...."hhhmmmm, mom said protect Ava...from the dragons....Jentzen is a dragon....I have a sword........that means mom said I can whack Jentzen with the sword!!!"

Me: "Yes Quaid take care of Ava and her babies."

Q: "Okay!!!"

Jentzen only came running once because Quaid hit him....and I never heard another thing from Quaid or the girls. I guess you give the man a little power and everything is okay!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Last week as you've noticed, I didn't get to my blog much...pretty disappointed in myself...but it was a crazy week. It started on Sunday and didn't end till Saturday afternoon. Nathan is a bit slow at work so we sort of switched roles for the week. I worked a lot and he stayed home with the kids. Staying at home also entails helping out with the housework. I don't think I did the dishes once all last week!! How awesome is that!!!

Laundry is another daily chore that needs to be done...a few days left undone and it piles up. I'm not sure how we get so many dirty clothes, but it just happens. So one day Nathan did the laundry. It had piled up over the weekend...so with blankets, towels, clothes...there was almost 6 loads that needed to be done. So Nathan was busy at it all day.

A little precursor conversation that happened shortly after we moved in...

Me: "Honey, they installed the washer and dryer backwards...the doors open into each other so every time I take something out I will have to go around the doors."

N: "So?"

Me: "Well it's kind of a pain....do you think you can switch them around when you have time?"

N: "Well I'll see if I can change the swing on the doors."

So he changed the swing on one of them so I didn't have to go around both doors, but still quite a pain to go around one door.

N: "Well I got one door, the other one won't change so you'll just have to work with it."

Me: "Really? You can't just swap them around."

N: (getting a little impatient with me) "No all the ducting, and gas lines are all run...it can't be done."

Fast forward to the day a few days ago when Nathan was doing all the laundry. I came home from work to see him finishing up the last load for the day.

N: "I think this spring I'll see if I can switch these around so the door isn't in the middle."

Me: (smirking in my mind) "Oh really? Kind of a pain isn't it?"

N: "Yeah, I'll pull them out and see what I can do."

Me: "I thought you couldn't move the ducting and gas line?"

N: "Well I should be able to figure something out."

So interesting when I was doing laundry it wasn't that big of a deal...but when Nathan had to deal with it himself...all of a sudden it became something that needed to be fixed!!!

I was a bit bummed about working full time last week...but if that's what needed to be done to get my laundry room sorted out...then bring it on!!!! :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

"Quality Time"

When is it convenient time to go to Urgent Care? Well with 4 kids...NEVER!!! Ava decided to sprout up a case of pink eye yesterday. I was working all day, I had card club last night and today I am watching my nieces...so that left me with last night after card club. I got home at 9pm, pulled Ava out of bed in her footy PJs and out the door we went. I was very tired from the weekend, I had a crazy Sunday and the time change and then up early to work Monday again. It's the last thing I wanted to do...but it had to be done.

I also work at the hospital and I remember checking in patients thinking, "What parent would drag their kids out at 10pm??" Yeah, well ME!!!!

Ava was very very cooperative, she rather likes the doctors. She doesn't remember getting shots, so that's probably why! She did everything the nurse said, and even got a popsicle. As we were walking out...

A: "Mom, we should do this again sometime!"

Me: "Really? Did you have fun?"

A: "Yeah mom, I did! I want to do it again!"

If I can help it....we will NOT be doing this again. Ava was in the best of moods. Chatting to me all the way home about the stop lights, the trucks next to us...etc at 10PM! I always thought she was a morning person as she's always the first one up...but I guess she's both!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

When ever my kids were acting up or did something that was less than desirable behavior and I would get frustrated with them, my mom always says..."Be thankful that they can do that. It's a blessing that your kids are healthy and behaving normally." What a wise statement.

I haven't posted in awhile. I have had a total blank mind. No stories, no funny comments, nothing too exciting.

In all of this nothingness, I realized...what a blessing.

We are having no crisis, no problems, no huge struggles, our kids are healthy, behaving normally, no tragic things happening to our closest friends and family, really nothing to tell.

What a blessing to have nothing to say!!

I have heard of two stories of families I don't know that have gone through terrible loss and tragedy, nearly bringing me to tears even though I don't know them. I'm sure if you ask them, they will say that the Lord is good and are still feeling blessed even in their pain and sadness. Even loss and pain can bring glory to the Lord as many of us know. There's always a lesson to learn, a quality that develops more strongly in us, an event that allows us to help and comfort someone else in the future. No matter what happens to me, if I let Him, the Lord will bring me through the other side, even better than when I started.

I am working on truly believing myself when I say, "Whatever you need to do Lord to get me deeper with you, do it, no matter what it is." Naturally none of us welcome pain and tragedy in our lives but sometimes it is necessary because we get in the way of ourselves.

So for today I am thanking the Lord for the blessing of nothing especially concerning my kids!

If there was something to say, the following may have not happened:

Q: "Mom! Come and see what Jentzen did!!" (this in NEVER a good statement)

A: "Yeah, he did something really really bad!!"

Me: "I don't want to come see, I want you to tell me first."

Q: "He spilled soap all over the floor!!"

Me: "Oh great!"

I ran upstairs to find three neat piles of pumped out liquid soap on his bedroom carpet. I spooned it up, got most of it and decided to let the rest dry and work itself out. Thank goodness it wasn't colored and made a stain, but even if it did....

Thank you Lord that I have a perfectly healthy child that is able to run and play...(and dump soap on the floor:)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Yesterday was work day for me which usually means I am up and gone before the kids even wake up and Nathan gets them all off to grandma's in the morning. I usually do not see what goes on in the process. Yesterday was quite different...not a usual morning at all.

I was downstairs, well into my working morning routine when I heard a half crying, "DDAAAADDDYY!" It was Jentzen. That boy is in a daddy stage through and through right now. When he's home, I can hardly look at him without him getting cranky at me...how dare I look at him when daddy is home!! Daddy should be looking at him, not me!!

How dare I...forgive me while I jet off in a different direction just for a moment, I have a thought, I'll get back to my story...

We were on our way to our friend's house to check out their new baby. We were driving through their neighborhood. As we passed by some people walking in the street.

A: "Mom! Those people shouldn't be walking in the street, should they!"

Me: "No Ava, we stay on the very side don't we."

A: "Yeah they could get hurt."

J: (in his most adult (2 year old) forceful tone) "HOW DARE THEY!!!!"

So funny to me how they pick up such adult sayings...and usually use them in the right context!!

Anyway, back to my morning...So I hear Jentzen crying for daddy upstairs...it was only about 6:15am and I know that Nathan probably wouldn't want him up yet. I ran up there quickly and told him to go back to sleep and daddy will come and wake him up when it's time to get up.

He was fine for awhile, but after I was back downstairs I heard his little pitter pattering feet upstairs....And then I see Ava on the stairs. She never wants to miss anything so when she hears anything she is up and adam to see what she's missing...

Then I heard Quaid upstairs...and then shortly after Keira starts up.....here we go!!

I was running around trying to get ready for work trying to help as much as I could with the kids...by the time I left. Keira was crying in her swing, wanting to be fed, the water was running full force on hot trying to unthaw her milk from the freezer...Jentzen was crying because he couldn't get his shirt on, Ava was saying she wanted to eat...Ava's normal tone and volume is closer to a shout, and Quaid was running down the stairs shouting to make sure he was heard over everyone else "Bye...I love you mom!!!" Nathan was downstairs boiling his water for his coffee...which is really loud and has annoying high pitched squeaking sounds. It was not the normal scene when I leave in the morning.

I was getting a bit tense as I looked around the room seeing all that was happening and all that had to be done. This is totally normal for the day time...but I am used to nice quiet mornings...this was not! I really had to go so I wouldn't be late but I wanted to help.

I went near Nathan to try to find Keira's plug and help out with maybe one more thing before I ran out of the house and he just leaned down to kiss me goodbye and said "she's ok"....I stopped quickly to look back...he totally had it all under control. He had the water going on Keira's milk, she would indeed be just fine crying for a minute or two. He was grabbing the bottle on his way back to the sink getting Ava some cereal, threw Jentzen's shirt on him and up he went on the stool to eat as well. He was just calm and calm could be. What an awesome dad. It made me feel quite good to know that while I was at work...Nathan was at home doing a great job with the kids. Maybe this might be the normal scene in the morning before Nathan goes to work. If so...kudos to him!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I was at a store with Quaid and Ava doing some price comparison shopping. So really, I wasn't shopping at all, I was just looking. So Quaid and Ava would ask every now and then if we were going to buy something...and I said no, we're just looking today.

Quaid spotted a big play gym set up conveniently way high so you could see it from pretty much anywhere in the store.

Q: "Hey, can we go see that big slide??"

Me: "Sure." (struggling to get my big cart through the isle...it's Sunday and the store was packed reasurring my goal to never shop on the weekends)

Q: "Can we buy that?"

Me: "No, we're just looking today."

Q: "Do you have any money mom?"

Me: "No, not today."

Q: "I have money at home mom." (grandma cleaned out her change cup and passed it along to the kids)

Me: "Yep, that's why we save our money right? To get something really special."

Q: "Yeah mom! I'm saving my money for a slide!"

Me: "That's a good idea Quaid, save up for something big you really really want." (I'm trying to start teaching the kids about good money management and spending habits...never too early to start!)

Skip ahead to bedtime....Quaid was in his bed all ready and I hear the jingling of change.

Me: "What are you doing Quaid?

Q: "After grandmas do you think we could go back to that store where the slide is? I have my money all ready." (thumbing through his pennies and nickels)

Me: "Quaid we have to wait until the snow goes away and it gets warm out to get a slide to play outside."

Q: "Okay, I'll keep my money right here for when it gets warm. I'm going to save it all up mom."

So precious isn't it...the mind of a child. He's got no concept of the value of things and life just seems so easy. He's got some spare change, why not buy a slide...he has no idea that the coins in his hand don't even come close to the $1300 price tag on that piece of equipment. Oh to go back to the age where life has no worries at all and things seem so easy. Yet another job that is mine as a parent...to prepare him for the reality of life...the reality that things of this world will decay and he will grow past them. To teach him that instead of focusing on saving up his pennies, to focus on saving up his time and energy for things of the Lord...for only then will he be truly satisfied with his investment.