Tuesday, December 28

Better get in our monthly post

I wanted to wait until either he was six months old or sitting up on his own, but Zach's worried his son is a lightweight and the pediatrician gave the green light, so Kael got something new for Christmas dinner.

He's actually loving it now, and Zach gets a kick out of helping to feed the baby finally.
We bought some of those new gingerbread graham crackers. They taste... like gingerbread graham crackers. Don't try and make s'mores with them, that's all I've got to say.

Mia wrote her name on hers with icing squeezed from a corner-cut Ziploc. I was pretty impressed.

We finally made use of our snow clothes last week, and went sledding with our friends.

We really need to get a sled.

Or not...

Monday, November 15


Well, that's almost what it felt like.

Remember the Build-A-Bear birthday party? Well, we got $40 worth of gift certificates because of the points we got on our Stuff4Stuff card. Then we got e-mailed two coupons for $10 off when you spend $30, because both Zach and I have given them our e-mail addresses. There's also a promotion right now, if you spend $30 you get a free Christmas stocking.

We told the girls to each choose their favorite B.a B. animal and headed out to the store, which was empty, since it's Monday. (Zach has a day off school!!) The first thing they did was fix our ripped Mr. Monkey, and put tags on our animals so they would know they were already paid for.

After choosing what they wanted, we added up the total: $60 even. Anya chose an angel outfit, Bree chose a sparkly pink dress with sunglasses, (Mr. Monkey is now Mrs. Monkey,) and Mia got a new panda bear in a fabulous dress with some matching hairbows. And we each got a free stocking- which was handy, cause Kael needed one. Zach bought half and used his $10 off coupon and $20 worth of gift certificates, I bought the other half and used the same coupons of mine.

The old lady who rang Zach up was already shocked out of her mind just ringing up half of it, and asked if we had a birthday party there as she begrudgingly took the coupons from him. When I asked if we could choose two different colors of stockings, she tried to tell my cashier that Zach had already gotten one, so that was it. She didn't realize I was doing the same thing!

No Christmas experience is complete without Scrooge. It was a glorious day. :)

Monday, November 1


Wow. I can't believe how freaking hard it is to post anymore. Okay- it's easy to post, but hard for me to put it high enough on my list of priorities to ever get to it. If this was something I could do with one hand, I'd probably have a post every day. But the only time I'm at the computer now is to nurse(which I can't do hands-free yet for some reason)or do school with the girls. So here's all of October in a nutshell full of pictures.

We went to the Creepside festival super early and were the second to get our free picture taken at Studio K. Bree is a cat in a dress, Mia is a witch, Anya is a crazy princess, and Kael is a jack-o-lantern. It is so nice to have another photographer around. I wish I could find another me in this town- someone who doesn't charge an arm and a leg, does a decent job, and lets you have your files. If you hear of anyone...

We went to DeMonye's greenhouse a couple of times again. It was just as fun as last year!

Grandma Cork sent some awesome crafts- we have enough to do more next year!

Grandma Gale sent everything we needed to make these owls. We gave them out to our neighbors with some cards Mia made (which I forgot to shoot- drrt.)
We delivered this one to our single neighbor, Dave. I tried to sneak out with just the one on the right, but Mia noticed that we "almost forgot!" hers and so I made sure she pointed out to him which one she helped with. He was so cute and complimented her on how nice a job she'd done with barely a chuckle... We were just looking at this post together, and I said "Look- Mia, there's your owl!" She just giggled and shook her head and said, "You didn't put a mouth on yours. Mine has a mouth."

Mia was the only one interested in helping with jack-o-lanterns this year, so we ended up with a Jasmine one.

And here's the center of attention every waking moment. None of us can get enough of this kid. I keep waiting for the girls to get sick of him, but they love to hold him and get him to laugh all day every day. Zach says he feels guilty he didn't enjoy any of the girls this much as infants. Mia threw us newbies for a loop, and the twins threw us for a loop-de-loop. We wonder if he smiles more than they did because he gets smiled at more than they did....

Friday, September 24


Our five-year-old (FIVE!) celebrated her birthday at Build-A-Bear this year. I couldn't fathom trying to get together a party at home with Zach's crazy schedule, family in town, homeschooling, and living in three hour increments divided by a baby stuck to my chest. (I wish I could hand over a few feedings to the bottle, but I'm almost positive my body will take that as a signal to quit producing altogether, and don't want to mess with the first success I've ever had at breastfeeding.)

So I figured we'd suck it up and pay for another professional party. We were all set to schedule with the equestrian center we went to over the summer, when Mia decided she wanted to go to Build-A-Bear for her party. I didn't know if that was even possible, but after a quick look on their website, I was convinced it would be a great (less expensive) idea. Basically, the party is free, and all you pay for is the bears, which are discounted!

I thought at first that we'd be coralled into a corner to quietly play some party games, and then overtake the line to stuff everyone's bears, which would have to be the $10 cheap-o ones with limited shirt options.

When we arrived, we were told we could choose any animal up to $18, and any shirt in the entire place. We had a fun party host who encouraged the kids to yell, hop, run through the store, make silly faces, sing a boisterous Cha cha Happy Birthday song, and ring a loud bell! And we had one of the stuffing machines to ourselves. It was so much fun- Mia beamed the entire time.

Mia woke up the next day and asked her sisters "Guess how old I am!" When they found out she was a number higher they figured they must be four now. Anya keeps asking me every day how old she is.

Since the party, we've spent the last couple of weeks doing school at home. It has been surprisingly fun! Mia's favorite subject is Language Arts because she gets to act out the stories with her sisters. Anya and Bree were doing her Math courses for the first few weeks, while I had Mia do the workbook we'd been working on before school started. Her teacher finally did some one-on-one time with her and gave us some more appropriate curriculum for Language Arts and Math, so we're excitedly waiting for the materials to arrive FedEx today. Meanwhile we've been doing our own thing in those subjects. I've been surprised at what passes as acceptable supplemented curriculum. They say if she watches a science program, that can count as science! There is a limit to how many supplemental hours we can do per week, but we've never come close to the minimum, the curriculum they provide is so great.

Thank goodness for this K12 program- I know I couldn't have started homeschooling from scratch our first year, especially with the baby here and Zach always gone. It's the best of both worlds- because it is considered public education, it is entirely free. We have a teacher to work with, a new up-to-date computer, tons of awesome award-winning books, art supplies, science supplies... yet Mia gets to choose what she wants to learn that day, and it is perfectly tailored to her abilities. I've been relieved at how socializing isn't as big an issue as I thought it would be. Since we started school, we've had time to go out and meet half a classroom's worth of friends in just a few weeks. She still has her best friends to play with when it isn't school time. Between the park, dance, and tumbling classes, meet-ups with our homeschooling group, and playing with her sisters at home, she's getting plenty of interaction with people other than her mom. The biggest drawback is that housework has taken the backseat, and it's a really crowded car. We just do as much as we can on the weekend. I guess that will get better the older the kids get, though. Which is happening at an astonishing rate, by the way. Two months and BAM! this kid isn't a newborn anymore.

So, anyway. There we are. :)

Wednesday, September 15

Whatever you say

"Dat one is milk, and dat one is juice!" Bree pointing to Kael's breastfeeding options.

I told the girls they needed to be quiet for a minute or Kael couldn't fall asleep. "Because he's a really good listener," Mia explained.

"He bless you'ed!" Bree exclaimed after Kael sneezed.

"What do snails eat?" Bree asked Zach while watching them scoot around our fish tank. Zach and Mia answered at the same time: "Algae" "Allergies!"

"Anya's bum bum coughed!" -Bree

I suctioned some googers out of baby's nose. Mia told him as he flinched, "Sorry, but we have to. It's like going to the nose dentist!"

Bree failed to get my attention while I was making dinner, so tried a new approach, "Honey!?" When I turned to look at her she asked "is your name Honey?" I asked her what she thought my name was. "Honey?" "And what's Daddy's name?" "Daddy!!!" I shook my head and smiled. She thought harder. "Honey?"

Monday, September 6

A lot.

It has been a very eventful couple of weeks.

This kid started Kindergarten.


And, as you can see, is about to start dance classes.

Thanks for the hand-me-down leotards and shoes, Kiley!

We'll call these the "before shots."

All the kids (with teeth) went to the dentist for the first time.

They were all very brave.

And this kid

got his first blessing.

And refused to grin his huge baby grin for the camera all weekend long.
This was as close as I could get.


Thanks for the blessing outfit Grandma! She made it out of the leftover material from one of the twins dresses!

My sister and her family of yayhoos were here from Pittsburgh for the blessing, and my mom flew in again. I was surprised how much it meant to me to walk into the sacrament meeting room and realize that a whole row full of my family was there to see our boy get blessed. We were in Utah for the girls' blessings, and took for granted how wonderful it was to have so many loved ones around to witness those sweet occasions.

I'm really glad they could come. Even if they are a bunch of yayhoos.

And last but not least- today Zach and I turned eight.

To celebrate, we went to Wicked. I loved it! The music wasn't my favorite, but I loved the story and how wonderfully G-rated it was. Awesome! We've unconsciously made it a tradition to go to musicals on our anniversary. Which I think is appropriate, considering how we met:)

Happy Anniversary, bun.

Friday, August 20

Welcome home, Daddy!

The last three days, when Zach got home and picked up the baby, he was rewarded with a huge gummy grin. When it happened the second time, we were pretty sure it wasn't a coincidence, so I had the camera ready when he came home last night. Sure enough- it took a minute of cooing to coax it out of him, but Kael is definitely smiling for real now. I love how his little tongue curls up when he smiles (or when he wails, come to think of it.) I just got another one out of him- ha! So fun. I wish I could take a picture of every one. :)

Sunday, August 15

This time around

Addicting little buggers.

And not just because they're full of sugar. There is something about the unpredictability- once you bite down, you never know what's going to happen next. Unfortunately, if you are nursing a baby, they make diaper changes just as unpredictable. Once the diaper is off, you never know...

Don't worry, I didn't take a picture of that.

Instead, I will grace you with another fun image:

Our little jaundiced kid soakin' up some rays. Yay for big sisters with style.

He's a month old today. When the twins hit this milestone, they were just reaching full gestation age, Mia wasn't two yet, and I was getting my gallbladder out. I can't believe how different everything is this time around. Even with Zach working 80-90 hours a week, this is hands down 10 times better. I have three little "helpers," one of which can actually help. I don't have to fight with this kid to keep him awake during feedings. My body is in tact. I'm not moving out of state any time soon. I've just got to remember all of this when the girls wake up at the butt-crack of dawn, and I've just finished a feeding that started at 4 and ended with an unpredictable S'more diaper explosion.

And just in case you forgot...

Mia didn't want to finish hers.

She actually wanted S'mLESS.

Whose child is this?

Thursday, August 12

First Family Picture

While we were at the hoedown activity for the twin group, a photographer was taking pictures, and we got the first shot of all of us with the new kid. :)

Wednesday, August 11


Last week was Kael's first trip to the zoo. I had to wait for the rest of the family to go on the boat ride. A great remedy for baby blues- get him out in public where everyone wants to see him and ask about him and coo at him. 2-week-olds rival the greatest attraction at any zoo. ;)
First train ride!

Also that weekend was our first outing with the Columbus Mothers of Twins group. They had a cute hoedown at Friendship Park. I didn't look closely at my calendar and mixed this activity up with another party hosted by Mia's homeschooling group, so we dressed her up in the cowboy costume, and didn't bother trying to find anything for the twins. When we got there, I started up a conversation with the gal sitting at our table. "We have twins, too!" She looked at me funny and asked me if I came to many of these activities. I told her Mia was just starting Kindergarten, so we hadn't been to anything yet. Then I looked around and realized there were a bunch of twins all over. Drrt! Not just a coincidence...

Our friends who just had twin boys in May were there- Mia loves their daughters to peices!

And we love the hand-me-downs they gave us!

He's getting bigger! This morning he slept from 4:20 to 9:10- his first 5 hour stretch! Mine, too... bliss. He does really well at night- just eats and goes right back to sleep. We've asked the girls to go downstairs in the mornings without waking up Mom. Most mornings it works: we set out cereal bowls and put some milk in a little pouring cup that Mia can handle. They just watch some Mickey Mouse and wait for me to come down. Usually we're up and about by 7:30- but I got to sleep in this morning!