Tuesday, April 29, 2014

If these walls could talk...

...here are some of the funny and cute (and not-so-cute) things you would hear...

Isaiah: Whats in the box?
Me: Toys.
Isaiah: (looking around the playroom) Really? It doesn't look like any are missing. Are you sure?
Me: Yep. Pretty sure. I just packed them all.
Isaiah: Oh. Well it really doesn't look like we are missing any toys. Maybe the play kitchen toys...
Me: Clearly we have too many toys!
Isaiah: No! I can tell there are toys missing. Really. Like....like....like.... Mom are you sure it's full of toys?

Charlotte: Sometimes I wish I didn't have a big brodder.
Me: Why?
Charlotte: Well sometimes when we are all playing in Isaiah's room he doesn't want Hannah there so he puts her out of his room. And I like playing with Hannah. And if I didn't have a big brodder then I could play with her too.
Me: I see.
Charlotte: I think it would be better if I had a two year old brodder.
Me: Makes sense. But you have a big brother. Sorry.
Joe: Hannah are you done (eating)?
Hannah: More daddy.
Okay that one isn't really cute or funny. BUT its her second TWO WORD sentence ever so its worthy of documenting in my humble opinion.

And lastly, this morning as we were walking into the restroom at Target to change Hannah's slept-in-all-night-and-poopy diaper (with a diaper two sizes too small and the remaining one and a half wipes I scrounged from my van floor):

Charlotte: Mommy it stinks in here!
Me: Well yes it's a bathroom sometimes they stink. Please hold my wallet while I change Hannah. 
Charlotte: Mommy it really STINKS!
Me: Mmhhmm. 
Charlotte: (looking around and noticing one occupied stall) Oh there is someone in here! I bet it stinks because of that person. 
Me: .... (Red faced and head hung low focusing really hard on the dirty diaper at hand while said occupant emerges from her stall. Meanwhile Charlotte oblivious to her mother's discomfort in the situation begins drilling me on the workings of and content of the feminine hygiene product dispenser.)...not now Charlotte! 

*Updated (to include a few more funnies):

Tonight at dinner I served the kids and then noticed I had tomato sauce on my white sweatshirt so I went to the bathroom to wash it out.  And this is the conversation I overheard from a distance...

Isaiah: Knock knock. 
Charlotte: Who's there?
Isaiah: Daddy. 
Charlotte: Daddy who?
Isaiah: Daddy is coming home. 
Me: (in my head) Ha! That's actually a funny joke. 

And then I hear Joe walk in! Joke was on me. Next I hear Joe riffling through the mail (mostly bills)...

Joe: Who are these people that always want all my money?
Hannah: Mama! 

Saturday, April 26, 2014


I finally, finally survived a ladies night out WITHOUT getting sick! No headache. No puking. No yuckiness at all. Granted this evening was much calmer than the previous two but still it's a HUGE victory for me! (The previous experiences can be found HERE and HERE.)

We took the train into the city, grabbed some dinner (my first time eating Thai food - yum!) and then we saw SELAH in concert. 

Friday, April 25, 2014

thoughts on nights

Just to be clear these are my thoughts on night shifts as the person not actually doing the night shifts. They are not especially cohesive and certainly not all encompassing. Just random thoughts I jotted down this past week as we were trudging through a week of (very long) nights. 

Nobody sleeps! Joe is up all night catching babies and writing H&Ps (and studying). And I am in bed tossing and turning and acutely aware of every little noise in and around the house certain someone is trying to break in. And the kids (who normally are fabulous sleep through the night sleepers) are up multiple times during the night. Just showing their solidarity for their non-sleeping parents I guess?!? And most nights at least one child joins me in my bed, if not all of them.


Each morning my first thought is "We survived. We all survived the night!" Followed quickly by the realization that "CRAP we have to do it all over again tonight."  It's all very reminiscent of my newborn nights (and days) with my babies. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

put me in the zoo, zoo, zoo

Since Grandpa was going to the zoo with Isaiah (and his class) on Monday, we decided to go too!

And I am so glad we did because it was such a FUN day. I almost didn't write about it because everything went perfectly. There really isn't much to share besides pictures (and I have tons of those!). Seriously everything went as planned or better. We got there EARLY, found free street parking easily, met Isaiah's class at the designated time and place (to drop off Grandpa) and then the girls, my mom, and I meandered around the zoo happily for a few hours.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

the most beautiful holiday

The other day while I was trimming Isaiah's hair he was making faces at himself in the mirror. At one point he showed me his bunny face. Immediately I said, "Like the Easter Bunny!" To which Isaiah responded "Who?! The Easter who?" I started to explain and then I stopped myself because I am okay with my kids not knowing who the Easter Bunny is. I like that they know that Easter is about Jesus dying on the cross for their sins. And THAT is why we celebrate. Because our Savior loves us and took our punishment for us on the cross. He shed his blood and gave his life for us.

And then we brought Charlotte to dance class on Saturday morning...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

story of my life

30 minutes before we need to pick up Isaiah from school....


 She finally fell asleep - tucked away in her princess tent - in her undies:)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Uh Oh

Hannah is 20 months old and acting every bit her age. She thinks she is a big kid and therefore wants to do everything by herself. And she is very opinionated these days. And stubborn. Its quite the combo. Unfortunately most of the time she is unable to do what she wants independently and/or unable to communicate her opinions/needs effectively.

Like the whole potty thing. I am in no way, shape or form ready to potty train her. In fact I am determined to keep her in diapers for as long as possible (because cloth diapers rock and they are cheap...once you own them of course). She on the other hand wants to use the toilet. In fact she strips herself down and gets on the toilet daily (with some assistance from big sister)! And much to my chagrin she is successful when she tries. Darn stubborn and determined child. 

Her opinions are vast and unwavering. 

She likes to wear her polka dot shoes. 
Or her rain boots. And she must put them on herself!
And her brown jacket. Again put on by her. 
And her monkey pajamas. 
She wants her 'Number' book read to her multiple times per day but she only likes the ball and cat pages. 
She needs a napkin with every meal. 
She wants to go on multiple walks each day. 
And she wants to choose her mode of transportation - tricycle or stroller - for each walk. 
Pretty much she wants to do everything for herself.
All this to say, as of recently her screaming has made an unwelcome reappearance as her favored form of communication. To assert herself. Two steps forward. One step back. Or is it one step forward and two steps back?!? 

To quote her speech therapist, "she's smart and could talk if she wanted to but she's just too stubborn to try". That's my girl. Just like her mother. 

It seems crazy. But we are actually trying really hard to teach her the words NO. ME. And MINE. She needs these words. So far no luck. Instead she has added the words HOT. FLOWER. and DONE to her limited vocabulary. Not quite as useful. But words are words. We'll take what we can get. 

Speaking of speech. As she sloooowly becomes more verbal, she tends to overgeneralize her new words. For example when she started using the word "bye" she used it to mean goodbye, done, and finished. She said bye at the end of every page as we read stories. And she said bye to her empty plate when she finished her meal. She is constantly pointing out "balls" everywhere. Stoplights and rocks and polka dots are all balls in Hannah's world. So the other day as we were walking out to the van in the morning and Hannah was trailing behind saying "uh oh" over and over again, I didn't give it much thought. In fact I didn't look back until I was done loading the other kids in the van.  When I finally looked at her I found her trying to toddle to the van with her skirt around her ankles! Uh oh indeed. 

Sometimes her speech is completely appropriate. It's her mother that is the problem!

Sorry. I don't have a picture of the skirt incident. Instead I will end with the pictures I took this morning. This fine SPRING morning in Illinois.
Isaiah kept exclaiming excitedly "I have never seen snow on April 15th before!!!"

But looking on the bright side because when don't I? ((Ha. Don't answer that question!)) The sun is shining and the snow is already melting. A high of 36 is expected today! PLUS thanks to Charlotte's potty accident right in front of our toilet (shortly after these pictures were taken) our bathroom floors are shiny and clean. AND more importantly I discovered a dried booger on the side of our toilet bowl and cleaned it off.  Good thing too because if not for being on my hands and knees scrubbing the floor who knows how long that would have gone undiscovered!?!  Days? Weeks? Months? And due to a last minute change of plans the kids and I are NOT going out of town for Easter. My parents are coming here instead. And that booger situation could have been terribly embarrassing if it hadn't been taken care of! Now if only I could get the booger picker to stop leaving them in random locations. Now that would be a good day. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

weekend recap

Friday night we went to our church's family fusion event. This event was 'The Colors of Easter'. The kids and I met Joe there. But the only color I was seeing when I drove up to church was RED. Fiery hot ANGRY (and frustrated) red! It started earlier in the afternoon at the library when I told the kids it was time to go. The girls were (mostly) cooperative with our departure. Isaiah on the other hand responded with a whiney "No. No. No. No. No. No. No." And tried to refuse to leave until he had finished coloring two more sections of his umbrella. I was going to let him finish one section...until he threw a fit. Out the door we went, unfinished art work in hand. On the walk home a very sulky Isaiah declared life unfair because Charlotte found the perfect stick and he did not. The injustice! Once home he broke Charlotte's stick. And with the snap of that twig I lost it! My patience was instantly non-existent and I had NO desire to fuse with certain small members of my family. After (harshly) expressing my disappointment in him we loaded up and drove to church. To have fun. And learn about Jesus! And enjoy our family!! Oh the irony. Honestly I was this close to dropping the kids off (with Joe) and leaving. But I didn't. I stayed.

Of course in the end I am glad I went (and stayed). It was a great evening of remembering the true meaning of Easter through the use of colors. 

Red...the blood of Jesus
White...He made us clean
Green...growth and living with God 
Gold...the promise of heaven

Hannah was there too...not fusing with her family. She hung with the babies in the nursery. 

Grandma Cyndy flew in late Friday night to spend the weekend with us. Mostly to help me with the kids (and their assorted activities) while Joe gallivanted around the city...

...errr...I mean attend an all day conference on his day off. That's fun too. If you are into that kind of thing. Clearly he is/was. 

My Saturday morning started with forcing Isaiah into jeans and a polo. As in I physically had to wrestle him into the clothes. He acted as though I was asking him to wear barbed wire woven with poison ivy. The reason for the "dressy" outfit? He had his first ALL DAY chess tournament. I didn't know if there was a dress code or not for such an event but I certainly didn't want him under dressed. Dress for success and all that...

Turns out sweat pants and a t-shirt would have been completely acceptable as that is what the majority of the kids were wearing. There was one other child in a polo....paired with sweatpants. Oops. I may have won that battle but I am not sure it was worth it and certainly not necessary. 

After dropping Grandma & Isaiah off at chess, the girls and I headed to Charlotte's dance class. It was a very exciting week...Miss Kim handed out their recital costumes AND allowed the parents in the studio to video them performing their recital piece. Big stuff. 

Speaking of big stuff, Hannah thinks she is a big girl and insists on using the potty like a big girl. Occasionally she is successful. This time she was only successful in touching every surface in the public restroom which is always fun as a parent. 

Once dance was done the girls and I made a pit stop at home to make lunch for our little chess master and chess watcher. We had a fast and furious hail storm come through during lunch prep. The girls were fascinated. Charlotte was especially excited because she has "hail green eyes"! 
She insisted on eating her cheese with the wrapper ON.
After lunch Grandma and I swapped roles. She became the little girl wrangler (at home) and I took over as the chess cheerleader. It's kind of embarrassing to admit but I was really nervous for Isaiah. He really wanted to win a trophy in his division - as in he spent most of his time in between matches oogling the trophies. Unfortunately despite his strong start he quickly fell from 3rd place to 7th place. The top 6 places received trophies. So close yet not quite.
He took the loss better than I expected. I was sad and proud of him all at once. He left determined to perform better at the year-end tournament in a few weeks.

The rest of Saturday was spent at the playground and eating dinner and more playing and bathing the children. Just regular life stuff. But better because Grandma was here! And the 70 degree weather helped too:)

[Joe watched the dance video and immediately declared the $5/recital ticket a waste of money. And while I agree with him that there is a 90% chance of Charlotte doing absolutely nothing during the recital besides standing on stage smiling. I disagree on the waste of money. Because man she is going to look cute in her costume...on stage!]
On Sunday the kids participated in the Palm Sunday service. They wore their new Easter outfits that Grandma Cyndy brought for them (in her backpack...along with all her belongings for the weekend!). Just call her Mary. Mary Poppins that is.


We foolishly attempted a family picture after church...

Because dangnabut I had showered and put on a dress and looked decent! Too bad my children did not get the memo that this was supposed to be a nice family photo...

This next one was as good as it got. Which I would rate as decent. Nothing extraordinary. None of our children look particularly happy to be in the picture. Good enough. Lucky for them there will not be a Easter family picture session since we are ditching daddy and heading out of town (again). But they will be forced to take sibling pictures. Win some. Lose some.

And this is where my camera battery died... so I will call it quits with the recap. Because oh my goodness this is getting loooong (and let's be honest) a little boring. 

That's a wrap folks. One of the busiest weekends we have had in awhile. And overall a pretty good one too.



Thursday, April 10, 2014

9 weeks.

In nine short weeks the kids and I pack up and leave*. It seems so soon - especially because I am not ready! Lots of sorting, purging and packing left to do to start doing. Two and half years ago when we moved into this rental home it felt as if this day would never come...and now it is nearly here! Seriously where does the time go?!

But before we leave I want to document this house. Our {rental} home. It is nothing grand. And it certainly isn't very beautiful. In fact it's quite small and ordinary and dated. But it has been our home. And that is worth recording in my opinion. 

It was the home in which we went from a family of four to a family of five. It is where my little boy became a big kid. An elementary student. It's where my toddler became a big sister and a ballerina. It's where I re-learned how to be a full time stay at home mom. It's where my husband studied and learned how to be a doctor. It's where my baby first rolled over, crawled and took her first steps. 

These four walls have contained so much life in them. Our life as a young family. We have stretched and grown in ways I never thought possible when we first moved in. So many memories. The house I will forever associate with medical school and Hannah's infancy. Some of the best times of my life. And some of the hardest. All wrapped up in one small 1960s ranch-style home. 

[Just a warning. This is our real house. In its mostly natural state. I did not stage anything. I may have tidied a thing or two up. But mostly I left it "as is".  Be prepared to be underwhelmed!]

*Entryway/Living Room*
[view of living room from the entryway]
[view of entryway from the living room]

*Dining Room*

[I included this picture because I liked the message on the etch-a-sketch]


*Isaiah's Bedroom*



*Master Bedroom*
*Charlotte & Hannah's Room* 
Not pictured is the basement, which includes our guest "room", my sewing/crafting corner, more toys, laundry room/Joe's "office" and a storage room. Oh and I am missing a picture of the actual house...from the outside! I completely forgot to take that picture. Oops. One of these days I will add it.
*The kids and I will be leaving two weeks earlier than Joe in order to give him quality, uninterrupted, non-distracted study time before his second boards exam! Besides we have fun things in Minnesota to do in June. Can't wait around for boring old tests to be taken:)
This is my last post about moving (until the actual move).  I promise. I will be back to my regular scheduled rambling shortly:) Thanks for tolerating all my complaining and sentimental thoughts this week. I appreciate it.