Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Yes, you read that right. The WBH handled bedtime duty and I escaped for a couple hours. I did a little shopping (and not even grocery shopping!) and ran to Target.
It was a nice break. And you never would have known I don't get out by myself much if you didn't see me open the back door of the car to get a child out of the car seat not once, but twice.
I'm not sure if that makes me attentive or absent-minded.
Let's just go with attentive, shall we?
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
So here's my recipe for white chicken chili, adapted from a recipe by Sandra Lee. It's perfect for busy moms, dads, anyone, because you can throw everything in the crockpot. That leaves you free to chase kids, change diapers, work, do laundry, and tackle everything else that needs to be done.
Wine is usually my beverage of choice, but this is great with a beer.
White Chicken Chili (for the crockpot)
2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces (I like a mix of white and dark meat)
2 cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 can creamed corn
1 can corn
2 cans diced mild green chile peppers (1 if you want less heat)
1 C. chopped onion
2 tsp. garlic
2 tsp. ground chipotle
1 C. chicken broth
2 packets McCormick's white chicken chili seasoning mix
Throw all the ingredients in your crockpot and stir. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high 2-3 until chicken is cooked through.
Monday, September 28, 2009
I didn't get any takers. Perhaps because I was too honest?
I had to rescind my offer though. Because laughter like this not only offsets the screaming fit at naptime, it is absolutely priceless!
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Isaac, Alex and Sam
We had a blast. We milked a fake cow, petted a real calf, pretended to churn butter, played in the old-fashioned kitchen, had a little tea, recited our ABCs for the teacher in a one-room school house, learned how to spin wool into yarn, and shoveled and ground sand to make clay.
It was a busy day, and boy am I ever grateful that I don't have to haul water and firewood, throw my own pots, spin my own wool and take care of the cows and chickens, too. I'm quite busy enough as it is, thank you.
Amelia and I had a lot of fun visiting the past, but we decided that we didn't want to live there. No disposable diapers was my biggest reason, but Amelia had a different take on it.
When we were playing in the old-time kitchen she noticed that there was no refrigerator. She asked me where they kept their milk and eggs. I tried to explain that in the old days they could only keep things cool in the cellar or maybe in a cold spring. Ultimately we came around to the fact that they couldn't keep things really cold, which meant no ice cream.
"WHAT?" said Amelia. "No ice cream? I'm not living there."
Me either, Amelia. I don't have time to make my own wine.
Friday, September 25, 2009
My mom nested on my behalf, since I couldn't do much. So she painted and sewed, and in an trip to Home Depot that had us both shaking our heads, pushed me (at 33 weeks pregnant) around on a rolling chair to pick out a washer and dryer after the electric cart died.
Grandma Alice holds all the triplets for the first time ~ Sam, Alex and Isaac ~ 10/10/08
I don't know if my mom would say that this year's birthday was better than last year's, but it certainly had to be more restful!
Grandma Alice & triplets in the baptismal gowns she made ~ Sam, Isaac and Alex ~ 01/16/09
Happy birthday, Mom. Thanks for always being there.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
This beach ball sprinkler has been a huge hit with the boys. And Jeff and I like it because it's easier to manage than the baby pool. Seemed like it really took two of us to make sure everyone was safe when we used the pool.
The sandbox has also become a lot of fun -- once the boys learned not to try to eat the sand. Yuck! They only tried a couple of times each before they decided sand was not for putting in their mouths. Clearly, the sandbox won't be big enough to hold us all next summer.
The lesson that wet diapers (from the sprinkler) and the sandbox don't mix. I'm pretty sure each boy dragged in at least two pounds of sand, even after we removed the diapers!
And since I don't have much time to clean the floors we thought we'd just put up a couple of fake palm trees and pretend we're getting ready for a luau. Bring your flip flops!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I was 34 weeks pregnant, with no complications and headed for the max of 37 weeks my doctor would allow me to carry. I had been off work for just two weeks, but was not on bed rest.
I was nearing my max of 48 1/2 inches around, and I was slow as an elephant on Ambien, but still moving!
Here's the glamour shot:
Sept. 21, 2008 ~ 34 weeks pregnant with the triplets.
Our 34-week ultrasound showed the babies weighing in at a combined 15 lbs., 13 oz. of babies.
Baby A (Sam) - 5 lb. 4 oz.
Baby B (Isaac) - 5 lb. 3 oz.
Baby C (Alex) - 5 lb. 6 oz.
When we delivered 16 lbs., 8 oz. of baby boys two weeks later because the ultrasound showed Baby A (Sam) had quit growing, their weights were:
Baby A (Sam) - 5 lb. 4 oz.
Baby B (Isaac) - 5 lb. 3 oz.
Baby C (Alex) - 6 lb. 1 oz.
True to form, Alex sure ate his fill those last two weeks! He's still our champion eater.
And if the photos make me shake my head in disbelief, this video of the babies moving and grooving at 34 weeks really amazes me. I can't believe my body ever contained these three active babies, and for so long!
Monday, September 21, 2009
The day started out wonderfully, with all three boys sleeping in until 7 a.m. Of course, their timing was terrible, as late wakeup meant late nap and I needed to keep things moving. But church directory be darned, I was NOT waking them up. I've had enough of 5:30 a.m. wakeup calls to last me a lifetime.
In order to make our 12:10 appointment on time, we had to start lunch at 10:30. So I'm waking babies up and strapping them in their high chairs half asleep so they can eat before we go. And Amelia's still in her pjs so we don't have to worry about her spilling lunch on her photo clothes.
So there we all are at 10:30 a.m.: Three semi-awake boys who are being force fed, a three-year-old who just finished breakfast and is now lunching in her pjs, and two adults who suddenly realized they are at T-90 minutes and counting and are running around like crazy people.
We're throwing things in the car, packing the diaper bag, loading the stroller, making bottles for later, and I grab the clean shirt I'm planning to wear. It came straight out of the laundry basket, and it was still dirty.
Seriously? Could I get a break over here?
I spot the stain, chuck the shirt in the washer with the ever-present load of clothes, and rush back upstairs to continue the force feeding. About halfway through the meal, the boys wake up and decide they are HUNGRY. They eat and eat and eat, and I begin to realize I'm going to have to cut them off if we are going to make it to the church on time.
(Cue music here. "Get me to the church on time...")
By now it's 11:30 and we have 15 minutes to load everyone up to make our 12:10 time slot. And by God, I am NOT rescheduling and going through this again!
So with 15 minutes until wheels up, we've got three boys covered in lunch, a child still in her pjs, my shirt has just been transferred to the dryer, and Jeff still has to get dressed, too.
Am I the queen of good planning or what?
I start diapering at lightning speed and tossing clothes on the boys, then handing them off to Jeff to strap in the car without even fastening the bottoms of their shorts outfits.
Sam has smeared food in his hair and my attempts to get his hair clean leave him looking like a koala bear -- flat on top with curls springing out on both sides over his ears.
Oh, what the heck. He'll probably never see this photo anyway. And he looks better than Isaac, whose cowlicks completely defy description.
We're almost ready to roll when I turn around and realize Amelia is till in her jammies. I hastily shove her into her clothes and run her out to the van sans shoes, then sprint to the dryer to retrieve my shirt. It's still damp.
Necessity trumping reason, I put it on anyway, even though the color clearly shows that it's partly wet. It will dry by the time we get there, surely.
We screech out of the driveway a couple minutes late and head for the church. Park, load the boys in the stroller, and try not to look too harried as we run into the parish hall.
That's little tough to pull off when your children are half dressed and you're wearing a damp shirt. But I mentally adjusted my tiara and went with the illusion.
Our time slot was only 15 minutes long. Sam was pulling hair. Alex was trying to crawl away. Isaac kept standing up. Amelia was crying. Jeff and I were smiling through gritted teeth. And the photographer kept saying, "Great!" "Perfect!"
Bartender, I'll have what he's having.
The guy enthusiastically took 11 pictures. And reviewed the digital images. He was thrilled with his results. So you'd think we'd have choices.
You'd be wrong.
The sales guy goes slowly through each photo as if it's hard to choose. Hmmm, that photo has three screaming kids in it and I look like my head's about to start spinning ala The Exorcist. Really. You can move on without giving us five minutes to ponder.
Photo 10 out of 11 turns out to be our only hope. No one is screaming. The tears on Amelia's face are not apparent. Jeff and I don't look like we want to abandon the children then and there. Someone might even have been smiling.
We make the choice and prepare to run off even as the sales guy is trying to show us the last photo with a different background in case we want to buy extras. Jeff's eyes are partially closed, making him look drunk (which would be perfectly understandable) and I'm clearly hissing at the kids, none of whom are looking at the camera or smiling.
I'm sure it's only a matter of time before that treasure finds its way to http://www.awkwardfamilyphotos.com/.
Ah well, at least our photo shouldn't scare our fellow parishioners away. It may even garner us some sympathy and an extra prayer or two. And we'll take all the help we can get.
Friday, September 18, 2009
It's written right there on my calendar, but I completely forgot about it. Of course, I had to schedule it nearly three months ago, so it's no surprise that I forgot.
I instantly panicked about what the kids are going to wear and wondered why I thought 12:10 p.m. was a good time when we are usually just cleaning up from lunch then.
And then I realized that it won't matter what they are wearing or that the boys had lunch at 10:30 a.m., when they are usually just getting up from their nap. The photo sessions are scheduled in 15-minute increments, and there's NO WAY they will be able to get a decent picture of all of us in that amount of time.
Maybe we'll snap a real winner that we can submit here: http://awkwardfamilyphotos.com/
I foresee us mulling over which shot makes our children and us look less demonic. The one where half of the children are screaming their heads off? Or the one where the parents look like they would gladly abandon the children on the rectory doorstep at any second?
I suspect no one will notice what we're wearing.
Instead they'll be studying the picture so they can make sure they never end up sitting next to us in church.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
It's time we talk about one of the less desirable aspects of parenthood: Diapers. And in our case, diapers times three.
Hoo, boy do we have diapers around here! Fewer than in the early days when we often topped out at 36 diapers a day, but we still average 21-24 a day. More depending on the reaction to new foods.
If you're keeping score at home, that means we go through a Costco-sized box of 200 size 3s in less than 10 days. That's a $40 box of diapers if you really want to do some math that will make your head hurt. And your wallet.
Of course there was that one bout of gastrointestinal distress that led us to go through an entire package of 96 diapers in 12 hours. And then there was the time that I had one constipated baby so I fed all three prunes. POOPAPALOOZA!
But diaper cost and contents aside, my real problem with diapers these days is the actual changing of them.
Back in May I wrote about Isaac's skill at flipping over on the changing table. Turns out he was just warming up, and he's been sharing notes with his brothers.
I'm quite certain it would be easier to milk a wild cow than to change this trio of bucking broncos, especially now that they've had months of practice.
Talk to them to keep their attention? They were over that months ago.
Distract them with a toy? HA!
Tell them "No," firmly, but lovingly? I hate to admit this, but that only makes them grin and laugh. (I know, I know. I'm in trouble.)
Hog tie them? Ah, then we might be getting somewhere.
Since they employ a number of world-class wrestling moves, I've decided to employ a few of my own.
Now if I only had an extra hand to actually change the diaper with once I've succeeded in wrestling the little buggers into submission.
Oh well, I'm sure I burn a couple hundred calories at every diaper changing session. So bring on the ice cream!
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
While he was the second to walk, Sam waited almost two weeks to get up and moving again after taking his first steps. But as you can see, he's getting around pretty well now!
I know many of you are anxiously awaiting cake pics from the boys' early first birthday bash. Hang in there. I've got photo editing and compiling times three you know!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Now, if you know Amelia, you know that food is not her thing. She'll even take a bite or two of a treat and walk away without finishing it.
But this, this was a big hit.
Cereal. With chocolate.
Courtesy of Aunt Susie, Amelia fell for Special K's Chocolatey Delight.
Left to her own devices, Amelia would have eaten only the chocolate chunks (of course), but with some persuasion, she ate the flakes, too, and found she liked them.
Up until this point we've avoided chocolatey cereals in our house, but I may have to give in on this one once in a while.
At least it isn't Cocoa Puffs.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Amelia with Grandma Alice and Grandpa Ernie. Sept. 2009.
But she looked at all of us and said, "Don't be silly! She's not mom. She's grandma!"
We tried to explain that I used to be a little girl and that her Grandma Alice was my mom, but Amelia was having none of it.
Still, something soaked in.
Today when Grandma Alice and Grandpa Ernie were pulling out of the driveway, Amelia asked if my mommy and daddy were leaving. I said yes, they were.
Then she asked why I don't live with my mommy and daddy anymore.
So, I explained that I used to live with them when I was little like her and her brothers, but I got all grown up and married her daddy. Now we live together with our own family instead of with our mommies and daddies.
Amelia pondered that for a minute then said, "I don't want to be all growed up. I want to live here with you and Daddy."
I told her that she wouldn't be "all growed up" anytime soon, and she'd live with Mommy and Daddy for a long time still.
She responded with a dramatic, "Phew! That's a relief!" and made me laugh out loud.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Isaac, Alex and Sam ~ 3 days old, October 10, 2008
Isaac, Alex and Sam enjoy story time with Amelia. September, 2009
The year has flown by, and I know it's only just the beginning. Already I have to admit that I have toddlers, not babies. And while it is a lot of fun, it's a little sad, too.
Don't grow up too fast, Sam, Isaac and Alex. Mama would like to keep you little for a short while, OK?
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
The noise was "rahring," according to Amelia.
Turns out they were feeding the lions, and they were all roaring for their food. Amazingly, Amelia was thrilled by this instead of terrified.
She rushed through what she wanted to say to me so she could get back to having fun. Clearly, she's having a great time!
Tomorrow Amelia and Daddy are coming home. I can't wait to see them and hear all about the trip and share pictures with all of you.
Monday, September 7, 2009
I started out with the idea that I could use clear packing tape to tape the lamp cord to the table leg and the floor so it wouldn't scream "BABIES IN THE HOUSE!" from across the room. Not that the crib in my family room doesn't already take care of sending that message.
So subtle, don't you think?The "experts" actually tell you to do this. HA! It was just sport for the triplets to pick the tape off the floor and try to chew on the cord.
So, out went the table and the lamp.
Next came the team effort to crawl behind the crib onto the fireplace hearth.
Sam, Isaac and Alex could all get up pretty efficiently, but down was a problem. And I got tired of rescuing one stuck child after another from behind the crib.
But the crib had to stay, so some creative stacking of stuff to block the entrance ensued. Now, they are crawling UNDER the crib to get to the hearth, but haven't figured out how to wiggle up there yet.
All of this brings me back to my original point: duct tape. It's cheap, easy to use, and a great supplement to my current cabinet door locks.
See, before I had these three boys, I had Amelia. And she did not prepare me at all for what her brothers would get into.
When we left the cabinet door locks undone, it bothered Amelia so much she would make us fasten them. Never once did she yank on the locked doors with all her might to pop the locks open. Probably never even considered it. BECAUSE SHE'S A GIRL!
These beautiful boys on the other hand...*sigh*
I'm afraid that this is a war I can't actually win. I'm just hoping to stay half a step ahead so the injuries are minor.
Or, I could follow a fellow triplet mom's advice, "For this stage of triplethood you might need to go with the industrial/insane asylum style of decorating -- just take everything out of the room."
What the heck, we're already well on our way. Here's hoping the boys don't rip the drywall off the walls.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Amelia is ready to go!
So far, she's been very excited about it, and couldn't get out of here fast enough after she woke up from her nap. I hope that excitement doesn't turn into a major freak out.
I armed Jeff with a bag full of treats and some new toys for the trip, along with a million pieces of advice that he didn't need.
"Be sure she uses the potty before you get on the plane."
"Don't let her touch anything in the airplane bathroom."
"Gum makes a good bribe. Or calling Aunt Susie to tell her you are getting on the plane. Or taking a picture to show Mom when she gets home."
"Make sure she still has rules. She needs to try all the foods on her plate and eat all her vegetables."
"There's sunscreen and hand sanitizer in your backpack."
"Take lots of pictures."
I know, I know. Give it a rest! It's not like he's new at this dad gig or didn't handle the whole crew by himself when I went to my brother's wedding in California when the boys were just 7 months old.
Fortunately, Jeff handled my rapid-fire "help" with his usual grace and good humor. It's just one of the things that has earned him the title of WBH (World's Best Husband).
Amelia offered me her trademark advice, "Bye, Mom. Don't bite the brothers."
So now they are off and the boys and I will be hanging out together for the next five days. Since I only have to feed myself, I am planning to cook some things for the freezer and see if I can get Amelia's closet turned over from summer to fall. (That will certainly guarantee the summer weather will last an extra couple weeks.)
And maybe, just maybe, I will be able to achieve the state of Laundry Nirvana while they are gone.
I know, you're on the edge of your seat over that one. Stay tuned.
Friday, September 4, 2009
Alex: One fry in the mouth and one in each fist.
Isaac gives his fry a good chew.
Sam: Caught in the act.
They love having these in their mouths so much that if we offer them a fry they will often just open their mouths instead of taking it with their hands.
McDonald's, any chance you're looking for some cute spokesbabies? I've got the perfect Fry Guys for you.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
(My apologies to those of you who will now be singing that to yourselves for the next two days.)
Amelia was singing the song the other night at supper, and that led me to ask: If you could have any super hero power, what would it be?
Amelia said she'd like the power to turn into a princess and live in a castle. Jeff informed her that she already is a princess and she does live in a castle.
Jeff said he'd like the power to sleep. Perhaps he means to sleep through the night despite crying children? (I hope not! That would leave me on the hook!) Or, perhaps he means the power to sleep because everyone was sleeping? That I could get behind.
I said I'd like the power to be in more than one place at once. That could also take care of the sleep problem, come to think about it. It would let me take the triplets to the park and turn them loose. And I know it would come in handy down the road when we have too many after school events or parent-teacher conferences happening in different places at the same time.
Some other great super powers for moms:
* X-ray vision - to see who really pushed whom through the walls.
* Lightning speed - because, seriously, who can keep up otherwise?
* Rubber arms - to grab kids from across the room, yard or block.
* Ability to freeze motion - think of all the accidents you could prevent!
On the other hand, there are some bad super powers if you're a mom:
* Super-sonic hearing - c'mon, regular hearing is bad enough.
* Super smell - Huggies. Enough said.
* Ability to blow things up - unless it also came with enormous self control!
So how about you? If you could have any super hero power, what would it be?
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Well, we turned the boys loose on the driveway tonight with their walk-behind toys, and it looked a lot like the Shriners gone wild.
Check it out for yourself!
Just wait until next summer. Nothing will stop us then! (Help.)