Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Chocolate Donut attack!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Excited for School

"I'm SO excited! I can't wait for school to start on Monday! I hope the weekend goes by really fast!"
I had to document this quote from Princess after Open House this afternoon. She's thrilled for a bunch of reasons. Her BFF is in her class. So is her other BFF, and her other one, and her other one. You get the point. Apparently in third grade you get to have lots of best friends. I'm so happy for her! I never had a lot of friends when I was in elementary school. I love that Princess has lots of friends, and that (so far) they haven't hit that age where girls are mean. It was really cute to see all of them hugging each other and talking about how much they missed one another, because, you know, 10 weeks of summer is a long time! She is also excited because her teacher is new to the school and "young and pretty", according to Princess.

Pirate had Kindergarten Orientation last night. His favorite part was the bus ride the kids went on while the parents sat in a meeting. By the time Superchunk goes to elementary school, I will be able to run orientation as well as all back to school nights! Pirate seems excited too. He appeared a little overwhelmed today going back into the school. I think he'll be fine. I'm happy his big sister will be there to help him to his classroom.

So, we're happy and excited for school Monday. I hope this enthusiasm lasts!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Family Trip to the Park

When I got this job, I knew I'd be working evenings and weekends. I had to work Monday and Tuesday, but was off last night and tonight. Tonight is Pirate's kindergarten orientation, so last night was kind of the last family night we'd have before school starts. I wanted to do something with the kids since we haven't gotten out to do much this summer. We planned to take the kids to the big playground at the park. The kids were were really excited. So, we loaded everyone up and headed to the park after dinner.

Getting everyone ready to leave the house, although easier than it once was, is still kind of a circus. While I cleaned up from dinner, Buster fed Superchunk his dinner. Then I changed Superchunk's diaper and put him in the carrier. He's the easiest to get ready to go. Next we send the kids (one at a time or they'll take forever) to go to the bathroom, wash their hands, and get socks out of their drawers. They've been living in flip flops and Crocs all summer, but tennis shoes are better for the playground. It never fails, someone seems to get lost upstairs or distracted with toys and this turns into a fifteen minute process. Once the socks are on, the fun process of getting shoes on begins. Buster started loading the kids in the van while I threw a few diapers and bottles of water in the diaper bag. The plan was to go play at the playground then get ice cream or milkshakes at McDonald's afterward since we had a gift card.

We drive to the park, and the kids are super excited. As soon as we get around the corner to see the playground, I know we aren't going to last long. It is packed. Apparently we aren't the only family trying to get the kids out to play. So, we unload everyone and I get Superchunk's carrier attached in the stroller. Buster gets Curly out of his car seat and immediately realizes Curly pooped. Somehow we forgot about changing his diaper before we left the house. We then got to enjoy the fun that is changing a squirming toddler in the back of the van with wipes that have been in the diaper bag way too long and are almost dry, while also trying to restrain three kids who just want to run across the street to the playground, while the baby in the stroller is crying because he just wants to fall asleep. Again, we were a circus. We overcome this and move onto the next obstacle, the fact that there is no ramp from the street to the playground on the side where we parked. We could either a) walk around the entire park with the 5 kids to get to the handicap ramp, b) leave (which Buster and I both wanted to do!), or c) ghetto-style carry the stroller down the steps. We went with option C. You'd think we would have caused a  spectacle with all the kids we have and the fact that we're carrying a stroller down the steps, but then again, we were at the Westminster City Park. If you've ever been, you know what kind of characters are there. No one even noticed us.

In my mind before we went, I'd push the stroller and follow Curly around the toddler area while Buster would watch the three bigger kids on the bigger playground. WRONG! Crowded doesn't even describe how many people were there. Before we separated, I made sure said out loud what color shirt each of the kids was wearing to keep track of them. I went into the toddler area with the little guys and Buster went the the bigger playground next to it with the other kids. Immediately I realized how wrong I was in my plan. Curly can't climb the steps and go down the slide on his own. I would need to go up with him. And I can't leave the stroller with the crying baby. So I carry Curly around. We try the swings. He freaks out and screams. We try the see-saw. He freaks out and screams. Thankfully Superchunk just gave up and fell asleep, so I only had one crying baby with me. We headed across the playground to where Buster and the kids were, and the look on his face said his experience wasn't going much better. Trouble wants to be big enough to do everything on his own, but he's still only three and needs help. It was so crowded it really was hard to keep track of everyone. We moved over to a less crowded part of the playground and the kids played some more. Finally, we decided it was time to go. I honestly have no clue how long we lasted. I know for sure it felt like 3 hours. I think it was more like a half hour though. Then we headed over to McDonald's and got some drive-thru dessert for everyone. By the time we got home and unloaded everyone, it was kind of melted, but no one minded. At least we had one last night out as a family before the end of summer!

Yes, I have enough kids to fill this weird see-saw thing!

This was a different night at a different playground, but kind of cute with all the kids in it. Apparently that's Pirate's favorite shirt.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Joys of Boys

When I was younger and thought about having kids, I always pictured myself with girls. I have two sisters and no brothers. I guess I just assumed I'd end up with the same as what I had growing up. Actually, I never really thought about the number of kids I would have, just that I'd have a couple of girls. I never imagined having four boys. I was delighted when I found out our first child was a girl. Picking out the patterns for her nursery, choosing cute little outfits and sandals, filling the closet with dresses in a sea of pink and purple... it was so much fun! At my baby shower, I got the cutest little gifts with "Princess" embroidered on them that we sat around her pink room. As  Princess grew, it was always so much fun to buy her new clothes. Anyone who's been to any store knows that the Girls' Department is five times bigger than the Boys'. Girls' clothes can be any color and have any picture or design. Boys' clothes are always the same colors and typically have a dinosaur or some type of automobile on them.

When I found out I was having a boy during my second pregnancy, I was ecstatic! Having a girl first made the second time exciting either way. I'd have a set of daughters, or I'd have one of each, a boy and a girl. I also received the cutest baby boy clothes and toys at my baby shower. Instead of accessories embroidered with "Princess", I got things that said "Little Dude" or "Little Man". Thankfully nothing said "Prince". I couldn't bring myself to decorate a room using the word "Prince". There weren't as many choices when picking out a theme for Pirate's nursery. Everything boyish seemed to be sports themed or animal themed. We went with a combination, teddy bears holding basketballs, baseballs, and soccer balls. His room was painted blue, and turned out very cute. As he grew, buying new clothes was easier because there was less of a selection.

Fast forward five years, and the cute little boy nursery is now home to two cribs, torn teddy bear border, and a few "Little Dude" picture frames that are still empty. All four of my boys have used this room when they were babies, and the two little guys are still in there. By the time you have a second boy, then a third and fourth (within the same year), you don't really care if the nursery is cute. It just has to be safe. The clothes that were cute the first time around are now faded and stained. They outgrow the stuff so fast it's not really worth buying a whole new baby wardrobe. As they grow, we still buy them new clothes. Where Pirate might have had a red shirt with a tractor on it, Trouble's might be blue with an airplane, Curly's is orange with a dinosaur, and Superchunk's is green with a car. Not a lot of selection, but they don't care, and neither do I.

The picture I had of having girls has morphed into life with one girl and four boys. Where I thought I'd have a house full of baby dolls and Barbies, there are Legos everywhere and superheroes galore. The kids all seem to get along pretty well. Boys and girls are just different from each other. Boys do grosser things than girls. Not that Princess doesn't have her share of bad habits, but the boys are worse. Lately I've noticed that Trouble and Pirate play together better than they used to. They are also teaching each other bad habits. For example, the other day Trouble came running in saying, "Pirate just burped right in my face!". Pirate followed saying, "Because he farted on my leg!". I also caught them peeing in toilet at the same time, standing across from each other. I find boogers in random places around the house, and they always blame each other. Someone always has a finger in their nose, digging for gold. Rarely do they actually pick up a tissue to get rid of the booger.  They still call me to wipe their butts when they poop, and while I'm wiping them, they find it necessary to describe the size, shape, and color of their poop. They try to get away with not washing their hands after going to the bathroom because they are too busy making a mess playing with their toys. Trust me, I'm constantly reminding them that they can't do any of the above when they are in school. I see a lot of phone calls from school in my future!

These are just some of the joys of having lots of boys that I have experienced so far. I'm sure I will have plenty more to write about as the babies get bigger. However, all four of them are Mama's Boys, and I wouldn't trade that for anything, even less boogers around the house!

My boys ready for a preseason Ravens game

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Catching up

It's been a while since I have blogged. This is because I never get on the real computer. Sadly, I've become addicted to the iPad. I tried blogging from it, but the pictures get uploaded weird and turn out too big on the blog. So, I'm going to play catch up for a few minutes now. 

My last post prior to the one about Superchunk hitting six months today, was at the end of July. August is almost over, and this summer has flown by! August first I started my job search. Blah! We knew I was going to have to go back to work at the end of the summer. A family of seven can't live off of one income. My husband worked a part time job last school year. Now that I'm finally not pregnant and able to work, it's my turn. I debated going back to work full time, but my entire salary and then some would go toward child care. Totally not worth it. So, I started applying for part time jobs. It was easy to talk about going back to work. It was easy to plan schedules around a potential job. Getting a job and actually working it and working those schedules is another story entirely. My first interview was entirely nerve-wracking. I hadn't worked since June 12, 2009. I hadn't interviewed anywhere since August of 2006. I was sweaty-palms nervous about this interview. For a part time job. But hey, an interview is an interview, right? It went really well. And I wanted to work the morning shift at this job. I'm talking 5am to 9am. E.A.R.L.Y. But I was willing to do it to be home for the kids the rest of the day and evening. The interview was on a Thursday and I was supposed to get a call that weekend about a second interview. In the meantime, I had another interview at a department store, and I was hired on the spot. It was so strange, I was nervous for the interview, and the next thing I knew, I was filling out new hire paperwork. I was happy to have a job, but not so happy about the pay. But, a job is a job and I should be happy to have one. After my next interview at the first place, they said they'd call in a week or so about new hires. We're still in that time frame, so I'm not sure what's going to happen there. I had to start the other job last night. I was actually ok with it. I definitely teared up leaving the house after I said goodbye to the kids. I was sad because I was going to miss Pirate's first soccer practice. I missed dinner and bedtime too. But my husband is an amazing person, and has no problem taking care of everything himself. The night went well at work because it was just training, sitting in a conference room watching videos and reading a handbook. I did enjoy it though. I hope to continue the enthusiasm once I start really working. I'm giving up weekends and evenings at home to work, but I need to remind myself to be thankful that I'm still home with the kids during the day. In two years, the plan is for me to get a full time day job. The three oldest kids will all be in elementary school, and the little two will be able to go to preschool all day. We'll tackle that when it's time!

Other than that, August has been more of the same. Summer started to get that "dragging on" feeling. We've slacked on going to the pool. Weekends have been busy with back to school shopping and family birthday celebrations. We were totally into the Olympics for the first week, then got bored with them. The kids have had a few day trips with family members. They are lucky other people take them places because I still don't tackle a lot of outings with all five kids in tow! School starts Monday, and it will be nice to get into a routine with the kids. This week is Pirate's kindergarten orientation. They both have Open House Friday where we can meet the teachers and tour the school. Then Monday I will put them both on the bus together. I am thankful Pirate has his big sister to help him. I worry about my little guy going into that big school all alone!

So, I am here, although I appeared to be MIA for a while. Just a case of not wanting to fight the kids for the computer in this crazy age of electronics! I love the iPad, but it and it's crazy apps suck me in and don't want to let me go! 

6 months old!

Superchunk is six months old today! I'm amazed that it's been half a year since he was born. When I think back on the complete anxiety I was feeling in the weeks leading up to his birth, I laugh at myself. The anxiety was for nothing. I had an easy labor and delivery. And life hasn't been as hard as I thought it would adding another person to the family.

 I'll be totally honest. When I found out I was pregnant last summer, June 25 to be exact, I was freaking out. I mean, absolutely freaking out. I cried hysterically when the pregnancy test was positive. To be fair, I had a three month old baby on top of a two, three, and seven year old. I was just starting to feel like me again. We were getting into a routine. The baby was sleeping at night. It was summer time, and we had joined the pool for the first time. We had a vacation planned. Life was feeling normal. Then this total shock came to us and I didn't think I could handle it. I don't love being pregnant. So, I wasn't exactly happy to have a positive pregnancy test. It took me some time to get used to the news. We waited a while to tell anyone. We knew the response we'd get. "What? Are you kidding?" "Don't you know what birth control is?". Yes, we got all of those responses.  I even got a "Congratulations?" emailed to me, like it was a question.We also got a lot of positive responses, like how blessed we were to have a big family, how we were already great parents, and we'd be great parents to a fifth child. My husband always tells me that everything will be alright, and that everything happens for a reason. It took me a while to get used to the idea, but after a little while, I embraced pregnancy for the final time.

Back to my little Superchunk. He is such a joy to have in our family. I can't believe how I was so upset last year. I could never imagine life without him. Yes, life with five kids can be hectic at times. But it is very rewarding. Superchunk is very laid back. He doesn't cry much. He's starting to develop a personality, and it's so cute. He laughs at his brothers and sister. Just recently, he started to get upset when we walk out of the room. He loves attention and to be around people. We've been so lucky that Superchunk has slept through the night since he was six weeks old. He's the book definition of a good baby!

Landon still definitely deserves the name Superchunk. He weighs almost 21 pounds, as much as his big sister weighed when it was her first birthday. He's moving into 18 month size clothes. If he doesn't slow down, he'll be sharing a wardrobe with Curly! He loves his oatmeal for breakfast and just started trying baby veggies. He's only had peas so far, and he's a little unsure of the taste. He's rolling over both ways, and pushing himself up on his arms. On his tummy, he reaches for toys and tries to push himself toward them. I'm in no rush for him to start crawling though, as that means he'll be on the move. I know all too well that once they start, they never stop! He also babbles all the time. My personal favorite is when he says, "mamamamama" over and over. I know it's babbling, but I still like the sound of it!

Our family is complete, and I am totally in love with this family. We were meant to have five children. I can't picture life any other way!

8/21/12 - 6 months old!
peas are yummy??