Nov 20, 2017

stripe gang

As I'm going through these old photos from our home in Texas, I grow nostalgic for our time there. These were from the summer and all that I remember is that this little activity occupied these boys for a solid hour. This may not seem long, but for little kids to be sitting in chairs focusing on stacking beads on toothpicks... that's a long time. Keeping this in my back pocket for another day when these boys start driving me crazy, Oh wait, that's everyday. Just kidding. Love these boys in stripes. 

Jun 10, 2017

when family pictures don't include the whole family

I knew it was going to be stressful, but I didn't realize I would have a son REFUSE to get dressed the morning of family pictures. I promise I hardly bribe my kids... but in this case, on the morning of family pictures, I would give him anything he wanted just to have him cooperate. But I could tell that things weren't going to go smoothly (do family photos ever?).
We were running late so we just stuck him in the car, with only his underwear on, and prayed he would be willing to get dressed when we got there. But we arrived and realized this wasn't a battle we could win, nor try to win.

I'm not sure (although I would have like to have tried), but I think yelling "GET YOUR CLOTHES ON RIGHT NOW AND SMILE SWEETLY AND ACT LIKE YOU LOVE YOUR PARENTS! RIGHT NOW! DO IT!... pretty please?!?!" I'll buy you a donut afterwards!" would set a negative tone for family pictures. You would see the tension behind the forced smiles and the boys holding back tears.
There's several challenges to having three kids within 4 years--- family photos is one of them. But there's one thing that I forcefully have had to learn, and that is to roll with the punches. As we pulled into the parking lot to meet our sweet, patient, and luckily, very understanding friend, I explained a last minute change of plans to our family photos. We decided (okay, I decided) to boot the two older kids out of the family photos and just do pictures with Greyson. Our adorable, sweet, innocent, loving, cuddly baby boy who will wear clothes I put on him and doesn't throw tantrums or talk back to us... yet. :)
We literally left the boys in the car so Ryan, Greyson, and I could have our own little photoshoot. Just the three of us. Don't worry, we made sure to stay in eyesight of the car. We wanted to make sure the boys could see us swooning on Greyson...and for safety purposes too, I guess. We even cracked the windows for them (parenting win, am I right?).

Anyway, as frustrating as that morning was, we got some beautiful pictures of Greyson and a story  to tell the boys when they're older about why they aren't in these "family" pictures. And instead of donuts, we stopped and got breakfast tacos for Ryan and I and went home and fed oatmeal to the boys. :) I promise we are loving parents who love ALL of their children.

Jun 7, 2017

When a small house is best... and when it's not. And Grey's 6 month pictures.

The fact that Greyson woke up this morning way too early because of Ryan getting ready for work inspired me to write this down. I felt like this was something I want to look back and remember. And this is it: Greyson sleeps in our closet.

Simon did too, until he turned 1. Then he graduated from our closet and was moved into the spare room. Is that weird? It never struck me that this might be unusual until after Simon was born and I told Ryan I was going to stick him in there. Ryan seemed confused. We had a spare bedroom, why aren't we putting him in there? Well, that spare room is on the other side of the house and that's too far for me to walk in the middle of the night. Did I mention our house is only 1350 sq ft? And walking from one side of the house to the other probably takes 15 seconds but still, that seemed too far.

I'm not one to co-sleep or even have baby's bassinet next to our bed. I hear them breathing, and cooing, and farting, and grunting, and every little noise keeps me awake. I'm no longer a deep sleeper like I used to be... Man, those were the days. I literally have a box fan next to my bed that I use as a white noise machine. HA.
Anyway, the closet seemed the most fitting for someone who is too lazy to walk across the house and too selfish to share her bedside with anyone besides the hubby. I feel like I need to preface this by saying the master closet is on the larger side. He's not in some tiny dark dungeon... although it is kinda dark in there. We did give him a night light so he should be fine, right? Plus there's a window so he's got some natural light in there, too. Okay...I'm actually starting to feel slightly guilty typing this like I'm trying to convince myself he's not in some dark hole.

We laugh that two of our babies have slept in our closet. Seriously though, all they do is sleep in there. They don't need a huge room to themselves. Plus, we get to add a milestone to our baby's life with their "coming-out-of-the-closet" party. Joke. Just don't except to ever see beautiful nursery room pictures on this blog.

Let's move on to Grey's 6 months and not his current sleeping conditions, shall we? 6 months has been a huge month for us. He's still sleeping through the night, thankfully. There were maybe two days he was up because of teething, but I would quickly feed him and he would be good the rest of the night. Even with teething, he is still the happiest baby. We finally started him on some solid and now he's down to two big naps with a small third nap he'll be dropping soon. He is staying awake longer which has given us a little freedom to get out of the house for a quick adventure to the park or library (you know you're a mom when library trips are considered adventures. ha!)

When it's getting close to his wake-up time, I'll get the older boys loaded in the car. We'll turn on the music and sit in the car having a dance party while I check the video monitor on my phone to see when Grey wakes. The moment he wakes, I'll hurry and snatch him up and put him in the car and we're burning rubber pulling out of the garage to take advantage of that time. HA! Those two hours he's awake is precious time for us.

So yes, Grey is on solids now, but the more exciting news is that he's crawling! And he's so eager to get around. He sees an object, locks his vision on it, and hones down on it till he can get to it. There's no stopping him now. He can sit on his own, although it's still a little wobbly. When the older boys come over and talk with him and pull funny faces, Greyson is quick to smile. I'm savoring this baby stage immensely. I'm understanding why the baby in the family is usually the spoiled one. ;) But look at him! He's so stinking perfect!! gahhhh. Happy Half Year, Grey. We LOVE YOU!

Oh and as far as when a small house is best--- I can literally plug in the vacuum into one of the sockets in the kitchen and vacuum my entire house without having to unplug it. I don't know why this makes me so happy, but it does. Pretty much the main perk for a small house is less space to clean and it can be cleaned much quicker. Priorities people. I'm all about less cleaning.


I'm so late on posting these pictures from Easter, but here are a few after our little Easter egg hunt. One thing worth noting that I will remember about this Easter, considering it was Simon's first time finding eggs, is that we forgot to explain to Simon the concept of finding the hidden eggs in the yard. We were so excited for him, but just assumed he knew what to do so as the boys darted out the back door with their baskets, Simon just stood there dumbfounded while Lincoln was running around yelling "Found one! Found one! Found another one!...... Got another one!" And Simon stood on the patio just watching as we tried coaxing him into the yard. Finally, it dawned on us that this was his first year and he has NO IDEA what we're doing. Oops. We told Lincoln to stop finding them so that Simon could get some. Simon still made out like a bandit after he realized candy was hidden in the eggs. Lincoln was generous, although somewhat forced, to help Simon find some. Next year will be interesting now that Simon knows what's up. It will be an even battle ground between the two of them to fill their basket. :)

On the spiritual side of Easter, after church Lincoln came home with his picture they made in class and he was able to tell us the whole story of Christ's resurrection. Hearing a 4 year old retell the account was sweeter than all their Easter candy combined.

May 7, 2017

Grey 4 &5

You are getting to big, much to quickly. Why must every child grow up at a much more quickly than the previous ones? you'll be half-a-year next month which means you're practically almost a year and that just can't be!!! ;)

You're 4 month appointment revealed how much of a giant you are. 17lb and 11oz. I can't remember height but you're ABOVE 99% and will probably be the biggest boy out of all three. You just got your two bottom teeth in and your teething was rather easy. We had our hiccups with naps, but you've still been cheerful and sleeping through the night.

You're so close to crawling. You'll get yourself up on your knees and try so hard to bring them forward. SO CLOSE, bud. I love watching you hit these milestones, but at the same time I'm realizing it will becoming more chaotic with another kid on the loose in this house. ahhhh!!

One of my favorite things right now is watching your brothers interact with you. No joke, this just happened yesterday at lunch: your brothers would take turns taking a bite of their lunch and then running over to you as you were laying on the rug. They would run over and get down by your face and say something weird and random (mostly "pooooop") and then run back to the table to take a bite with the other ran over to say something to you. LITERALLY, this probably went on for 10 minutes, which may not seem that long, but to have two boys running back and forth, back and forth... well, they didn't show any signs of slowing down so I told them to just sit and finish. But you would lock eyes on them and they would try so hard to get you to laugh and smile. It really doesn't take much though, you're so quick to smile when your brothers come interact and play with you. I tell ya, I really lucked out in this family. You three boys are pretty stinking awesome.

Apr 19, 2017

greyson 2 & 3 month pictures

This BOY!!! I love him so much, and maybe a little more now that he's sleeping through the night.The night before he turned 3 months. You never forget your first night because you wake upfeeling like a million bucks and that you can take on the world!!! or at least until the other kidswake up and then you realize, will I ever NOT be tired? Yeah, maybe when they're all finally out of the house.

Anyway, he's such a good baby. Although, since he's been sleeping through the night, he started taking only 45 minute naps all day. This initially drove me crazy. But I don't even mind anymore because 1. He's sleeping through the night and 2. He's so happy!! He goes down for naps like a breeze and wakes up happy. I can't complain. He's starting to stay awake for longer stretches so his naps are finally starting to stretch out, as well.

He's wearing size 4 diapers, which is totally ridiculous, right? I mean, his 2 year old brother is wearing size 4 ---he shouldn't be in the same size as his older brother!! But what's throwing me off even more so are his looks. He has a reddish-tinge to his hair and he has BLUE eyes!!!!! We laugh at how dark Lincoln is, and Simon is white, but still has dark eyes, and then BAM! There's pasty-white Greyson with blue eyes and reddish hair.

simon turns 2

My dear Simon,
You have grown so much this past year. These past few months you have really started talking more, mostly becoming a parrot and repeating everything your brother and I say. Whenever I correct you or Lincoln on a behavior, I have you both repeat back to me, "Yes, mam." Although you've confused mam for man and your strong personality has turned the phrase to "No, man!" instead. It can be quite frustrating, but also ridiculously funny at the same time.

You are still as curious as ever. Your first birthday party theme of Curious George is still rather fitting to this day. Your daddy and I are convinced we never had this many issues with Lincoln and as a result we have been gravely ill-prepared to toddler-proofing the house. Bowls and flour containers from the cupboards, all the forks and spoons from the silverware drawer, food from the fridge, makeup from the bathroom, garbage cans--- pretty much anything that can be opened and rummaged through, you have done it. You would think we would have learned our lesson by now, especially when it comes to my lipstick. I should know that it needs to be kept in the highest place possible, otherwise it's broken and smeared all over your face.

And is it possible to be fiercely independent but adamantly clingy at the same time? Yes, it is. Sadly, you refuse to let me help you at the playground when you're climbing up or coming down, and you want to be the one to fill your own cup up and open up your own cheese stick, but when it comes to walking, you depend solely on the arms of your daddy and I. I have you to thank for keeping my arms toned, even when everything else is weak. Ha!

You love to color and you love to read. And your most FAVORITE thing involves anything with water. Bubble baths, turning on and off the hose in the backyard, taking 20 minutes to wash your hands in the bathroom sink, or filling your cup up with water from the fridge only to dump it in the sink and do it again at least 15 more times. And your latest obsession, which is slightly weird and will bring a good laugh for many years to come, is with the local grocery store H-E-B. Whenever we mention that we are going, you clasp your little hands together and excitedly yell, "H-E-B!!!!" We've even written an H-E-B lullaby to sing you at night.

You love your oatmeal every morning and although you don't eat a TON of food, the food you do it is not typical for two-year olds. You'll eat asparagus and sautéed green beans, you've eaten plain spinach out of a salad and devour anything dipped in ketchup. But oddly enough, I can't seem to get you to eat a quesadilla or eggs.

You are still incredibly sweet and give kisses so freely when someone gets hurt. You're our cuddle bug and I'll always remember you at this age as being glued in our arms and laps. I love you, Simon.