Sunday, August 30, 2009

Introducing: Pingy and Amy

The sisters each have lovies that they can't live without. Ella has Pingy, the penguin, and has actually had him for a while now. Little Kate has Amy, the...I forget what kind of animal Amy is, I'll have to ask Caleb. In any case, these girlies love their stuffed friends and their blankies. Take a look:

The last picture drives me crazy. To soothe herself, sucks her fingers and twirls her hair. Cute huh? NO! She will twirl her hair until it's in a rat's nest and is so matted I have to cut some of it out. UGH, it drives me crazy!

But, mercy, are they delicious or what?!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Happy Birthday Luke!


Oh my, boy you turned 5 today and I can’t even believe it! You have been so excited about this birthday and counting down the days for the past month. And it’s finally here!

I love being your mommy Luke. You are funny, smart, athletic, easy going, and you make a best friend every where we go. You are great at making friends, remembering names and making people feel included. I love that about you!

Luke, you have this ability to make me furious and then in the next moment you will say or do something that has me laughing and wanting to kiss you to death! Sometimes I just look at your cute little face and I want to squeeze you! You are my child that thanks me for all the little things I do for you. You can play for hours by yourself, but if I ask to play with you, you get so excited. But then you get frustrated with me because I don’t know a lot (like what happens in each Star Wars movie), so you tell me I can go. But if I make a sad face, you will give me an appeasing kiss.

I have started calling you, Gooey, because you always have something sticky on your hands or face. No matter how many times I wipe you down, you always seem to get gooey!

Right now, Luke, you are into Lego’s, Star Wars & Transformers. And boy are you into them. You also love to ride your scooter and love to ‘race’. If I turn anything into a race, that gets you going! You will beg me to drop you off at the end of the street and ‘race’to the house. You run as fast as your cute little legs will take you and I go as fast as I can in the van – and you always beat me!

Luke, when I dropped you off for your first day of Preschool, you were so excited and walked right into that class. I knew you would and I also knew that when I went to blow you kisses goodbye, you would pretend that you didn’t see me. You really dislike Public Display of Affection from Mommy. And that drives me crazy!! You’re still my baby and I love you!!

Luke, you are my little light. Your enthusiasm for life is contagious and people are drawn to you. I pray that as you grow up, little Lovey, you grow up to be a man who loves Jesus and is bold in your faith. As you grow up always seek Godly wisdom and truth. I pray that as you grow up and your faith sways, you always remember that the foundation on which it is built will never be shaken. You are an oak of righteousness and I pray that your baby roots grow stronger, as you grow taller and bring God glory. Always remember Lovey that that is your purpose – to bring glory to God!

I love you, Goo!


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Terrible Two's times Two

Don't let these sweet faces fool you! These little girls are T-R-O-U-B-L-E! They are naughty, sassy, adorable, dramatic, sweet, funny, irritating, demanding, loving, cute and they get away with murder!! They have all of us wrapped around their fingers. It's bad. Really, really bad.
Mr. Tough Guy Daddy tried to get after Ella the other day and she put him in his place. And instead of putting the smack down on her, he laughed. Mr. Tough Guy turns into Mr. Pushover with it comes to the Twinkies.
We are going to pay for this when they are teenagers. Oh, Lord, help us!

Ella - this girl is addicted to her mama. She loves me! I have never had a child as attached to me as Ella. That girl hugs me, snuggles me, kisses me, follows me, always wants to hold my hand and is just madly in love with me. AND I LOVE IT!!!! Ella is the younger of the two and I somehow think she knows it... She definitely has the baby-of-the-family personality.

Lily Kate is the one that has her brothers spellbound. That girl demands and they jump. It's pretty funny. Lily is bossy, she loves to clean and take care of everyone and definitely is my little 'helper'. We call her the 'little mama' because she seems to think that is what she is...

Looking for trouble together.

Words cannot express how I love these little sisters!!


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

More pictures than is necessary of my childrens first day of school

Well, we survived the first day of school. Barely, but I made it. I held it together while at school, but as we drove off I sobbed. Yep, it was pathetic.

Thankfully, Love was there to help me pull it together. Oh, are you curious what that looks like? Umm, like this: I sob something like, "my-babies-are-growing-up-and-are-leaving-me-and-are-going-to-get-married-and-have-babies-of-their-own-and-move-away-and-I'll-get-old-and-no-one-will-come-visit-me-in-my-nursing-home-and-my-life-feels-like-it's-ending."

And while I sob, Love holds my hand and mutters something like: "I'm sorry. Your babies are fine. I know this is hard for you."

All the while I know what he is really thinking: "Woman, get a grip. They are just going to school, not another planet and it's only for 4 hours, not 4 years. This is the natural progression in life, millions of children do it and with much less drama than this. Pull it together and lets move on with the day."

But after 8 years, he knows which response will move my drama on faster and which one will spur on World War 3.

He chose to try to move this drama on man.

So, I cried the whole way to the gym, did some crazy cardio and then went to yoga where I found my smile when Love came to class with me. This is the man that will never come when I ask him because he swears they used yoga as a form of torture in Vietnames POW camps. So you can imagine how happy I was when he came with me. And then watching him do the yoga moves really brought a smile to my face. Actually, it brought sheer laughter.

I don't think he's planning on coming back.

Anyway, here are some pictures of our big day:

I made lists for the kids and they have been wonderful in helping our mornings go smoothly. These are similar to the list I made for Caleb last year. I love that I will get to do some quiet time and pray with both boys, seperately, every morning before school.

Me and Luke.
I love this boy! He chose to wear all camo. So cute!
My first grader!!
Brothers and best friends!

Luke wanted me to get a picture of him standing to the side on one foot... Then with one foot in the air! He's a nut!!

Doesn't he look so grown up?!

And they are home where they belong!!


Monday, August 24, 2009

Letters from your crazy mom on your first day of school!

Caleb ,

You start first grade today! Wow, I can't believe it. Weren't you just learning how to write your name yesterday? And this year you will be learning cursive! You were so excited when we met your teacher the other day and she told you that you will start learning cursive on the first day of school. You, my boy, still have this unquenchable thirst for learning! You are also excited that your best friend AJ will be in your class this year. I worked to make that happen, little Lovey, so make me proud.

Caleb, I am so excited for you! I'm glad that you are so happy to go back to the school that you love your school. And I'm thankful that at your school they profess to have 3 priorities to teach you - 1. that God loves you 2. that you are created in God's image and 3. that God has a plan for your life! How exciting that you are exposed to those truths everyday, while you are away from mama. I'm thrilled that your teacher loves God and wasn't ashamed to stand in front of a room full of strangers and tell them that. You are most certainly blessed!

I pray that you have a wonderful school year and that your teacher continues to feed your hunger for learning. I pray that you make good choices with friends and that you remember that good leaders lead by example. I pray that you look for those that are lonely and you befriend them. Lovey, you are an Oak of Righteousness - Shine bright for Jesus and stand tall for truth.


If there was ever a child who runs to a new adventure, it is you my boy! I have no doubt that when I walk you to your new school and classroom, you will run right in and not look back. I will try not to be sad when you do that and am sure that Daddy will remind me that when you do that it means you are 'well adjusted and happy'! I know one thing you are super happy about and that is going to Caleb's school and getting to ride the school bus home with him! I'm confident that he will show you the ropes on the bus and teach you the rules. That big brother loves rules. A little more than you, right Love?!

We went to meet the teacher the other day and in the 10 minutes that we were there, you made a new friend. I'm sure that by the end of the day you will have 20 new friends, know all their names and know something special about each of them. You're gifted that way little buddy. People are drawn to that light inside of you, so shine super bright for Jesus!

I will miss you Lukie, but I know that this is what you want to do and I will work hard to be happy for you. I pray that you have a wonderful year, enjoy your friends and teacher, and that you learn a lot about Jesus! He loves you Luke and I pray that he protects you while you are away from mama. Remember Luke, you are an Oak of Righteousness - you were planted to show others God's glory! Shine bright and point the way!!


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Life is really bittersweet

Apparently today isn't the day to make big decisions about the 'ole blog. I have been feeling super nostalgic/guilty/sad/overwhelmed/melancholy...and all these other feelings that aren't typically part of my personality, a lot over the past week. And I know what the culprit is - back to school time.

I can't believe that Caleb will be in first grade and that Luke will be in full time Pre-K. The thought of only having the little twins home all day brings me to tears.

Life is flying right by me and I'm so not ready. I'm not ready for summer to be over, I'm not ready for Caleb to be in first grade, I'm not ready for Luke to be in school all day, I'm not ready for the twins to grow up, I'm not ready for homework or potty training and I'm not ready for my kids to grow up.

I want to hold on tightly to them for as long as I can and never let go.

But that's not what a great mama does. A great mama opens her hand slowly to expose her children to life around them. She uses each day of their childhood to prepare them to be the Godly men and women that God has created. As they grow up, she helps them learn the purpose and plan that God has for them. She doesn't shelter them and hold too tightly to them. She remembers that they aren't hers - that they are being entrusted to her for a short season. She knows that at the end of that season, they will fly away and she prays that they will always know she loves them and will always be there for them.

Oh, Holy God, please help me to be a great mama. My heart is so heavy and my eyes so full of tears. I love these little people that you have given me and am so thankful that you chose me to be their mama. Help me to find joy and laughter tomorrow. You see how excited my babies are to go to school, help me to be happy for them and excited with them. Help me to appreciate the time that I have with the Sisters. And most of all help me to remember that these babies aren't mine. They are yours. I love you Jesus and am so thankful for these little blessings. Gosh, I don't deserve them and that makes them even that much more special.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Just another day around the Mad House

My boy is home safe and sound from his first sleep over and he had a blast. That boys is growing up!! He's already asking when he can have his friends over to spend the night. It's hard to believe that we are already at this place in life... Luke had a hard time without his big brother around, especially when it was time to go to sleep last night. It took him a while to fall asleep and he informed me (several times) that he doesn't like to sleep in the dark - well, son you've been doing it for almost 5 years and haven't had a problem. Lucky for Luke, Daddy wasn't home and that I am a sucker and let him sleep with his fish tank light on. Fish probably got no sleep, but I did.

Which is a good thing because I have 50 people coming over for a playdate tomorrow, the house is a mess and Love is out of town. Okay, so perhaps 50 is an exaggeration. The exact number is 49. 49 people coming over in the morning. One of the ladies that RSVP'ed called me "brave". Hmmm, that is definitely NOT the word I would use. Crazy and insane come to mind. It will definitely be a 'manic Monday' - full of blog fodder, I'm sure.

Speaking of tomorrow, a week from tomorrow is the first day of school. I can't believe that summer is almost already over!!! UGH...that was way too fast for me. Seriously. It has been fun (most of the time) having all my babies with me all day. I love watching them interact with one another (most of the time) and we have had a great routine (once again, most of the time). It's crazy - I will have 2 kids in school full time this year and I can't even imagine what it will be like. Just me and the sisters. Me vs. 2 kids! Cake right?? Well, maybe not. They are two year olds. I'm excited and nervous and sad, all at the same time. That first day is going to be so hard for me...

So, let's not think about things that make me sad, let's think about things that bring me great joy - school supplies!! I love shopping for school supplies, wandering up and down the aisles, the smell of paper and folders and crayons, new lunch boxes and backpacks...

Except when I take all 4 kids! Oh, mercy, it was bad. I spent $60 dollars, didn't even get half of the supplies I needed or a backpack or lunchboxes, but did end up with a cart full of ripped crayon boxes and folders thanks to the sisters. They were terrible. Just awful. Then I got yelled at by some man because Luke was blocking the aisle and wouldn't move. He was so rude and muttered something about 'moms needing to get control of their children'. Unfortunately we ran into him again after the sisters threw their cheetos (that I got to keep them busy!) on the ground so we were blocking the aisle with 2 bags of cheetos dumped on the floor. He was so disgusted he rolled his eyes at me, grunted and stomped off. I had visions of knocking him down to the floor and letting the kids throw cheetos at him, but perhaps we shouldn't talk about my visions...

On our way out of the store Caleb very matter-of-factly says to me, "Well, that wasn't too bad. The twins didn't rip apart the whole store. Next time we run errands, I really think you should get a babysitter for the sisters."

Yep, that boy is growing up.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My boy is growing up!

Caleb is at his first slumber party and I am d-y-i-n-g to know how it is going. So much so that I think I'm going to call. Be right back...
Alright-y, apparently he's doing great and I'm the one crying. Seriously, I almost started crying while on the phone with his friends mom. I held off until I got off the phone. I really need to pull it together. The last thing we need is for people to think I'm nuts...
Caleb was so excited about his sleepover. Initially he wasn't and I knew the reason why. Pups and blankie. His two best friends that he has slept with every night for the past 6 years. I think he is getting at the age where he knows he's too old to still 'need' them, but can't imagine going without them. So when I told him he could bring pups and blankie he was excited to go. And then when I told him we could go and get a new sleeping bag for this big occasion, he was over the moon with excitement.
Here's my boy with his camo sleeping bag:
I love that kid. He is the best. And I'm thrilled that he is having such a good time.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Oh great, a new obsession

I love my new camera! Love it!!! Here are some shots I have taken in the past couple of days with it:

Ella - mercy, I love that little face. Shisher's hard at play!
And...I have no idea who this is! I think Ella, but it could possibly be Lily Kate....maybe? Love is voting this is Lily. No, I think it's Ella. Yeah, I'm sure. I think. And no, this does not prove that they are identical. It proves that they are sisters and have similarities (I hear you snickering, all the way from Korea, Kellie!) The one thing I do know is that who ever it is has a dirty face. These girlies definitely eat like their Papa!

I plan on taking more pictures and spending more time with PSE. As soon as I find some more time...


Sunday, August 09, 2009

My Life - the cliff notes version

I'm tired, but I want to blog.

But I'm really tired and should go to bed.

But I want to blog.

And there, friends, is my daily dilemma.

That and when I go long-er periods without blogging I have so much to blog about and no way to make it sound coherent.

Then I remember that this is my blog and I want it to be true to life. And in real life I am hardly coherent.
  • I got a new computer and LOVE it! I had no idea how slow my old computer was until I got this one. And thankfully, ignorance really is bliss. My new computer is fast, has a huge hard drive, is cute and is (best part!) ALL MINE! I love that I can organize it in a way that makes sense (my man would laugh at that one) and that there is no medical mumbo jumbo on my computer. Oh, yes, mama is happy!
  • So if figuring out my new computer wasn't enough to keep my busy, then my new DSLR most certainly is! Oh, heard right! I have a new camera and I love it. I seriously could play with it for hours and still find something new. Last night Lovey found me locked in my room with my camera. Hiding from him and his children. Obsessed? For Sure!
  • I gave Caleb my old, old digital camera. It was a great little point and shoot that I had a couple of years ago and it's been in a drawer collecting dust. Since Caleb has been desperate for a camera and since I am sick of hearing him beg I gave him that one and to say that boy loves it is an understatement. We got him new batteries last night before he went to bed and by this morning the batteries were dead and he wanted new ones. He had taken a bazillion pictures of the floor, ceiling, Pups and blankie, his toys and Luke. Most of the pictures of Luke are of him sleeping...
  • Last Friday we took all 4 kids to the doctor for their annual check-ups. I don't know if this is good or bad, but we don't really ever take our kids to the doctor. None of the kids had been to the doc since their last yearly check-up, last summer. I know, even our doctor seemed surprised. As we walked to our car, after being at the doctor's office for 3 hours, I remembered why we don't go very often. Love and I were both worn out! Whew, if we didn't have anything going into the hospital, I wouldn't be shocked if we do now. Caleb touched everything in sight, Luke all but licks the floors and the, yeah they are two little walking petri dishes! I wanted to bathe in antibacterial. But instead we went to the hospital cafeteria where we all ate lunch for 6 dollars!!!! 6 dollars. And we all got real food (I guess that's relative?) and soda. I told Lovey, that that is where we are taking the kids to eat from now! After we buy some sort of anti-germ space suits....
  • Caleb and Luke have been sleeping in a tent for the past couple of nights. In their room. And they love it! My man and I have loved it because we have been putting them to bed (in their tent) at 6 pm and they happily go! I didn't say they go to sleep, I said they go in their tent and play (pseudo) quietly for a couple of hours. And we have dinner dates in the living room. Joseph and I, with yummy food and - Jack...
  • Which brings me to my next point - Last summer was the summer of Lost. Remember? We got totally hooked on Lost, watched the whole series in like 8 weeks and were so obsessed that I dreamt about it and wanted desperately to find a way on the island so that I could be amidst the drama. Um, yeah, that was the summer of Lost. Well this summer we are hooked on 24. Once again proving that I have no self control or life.
  • I've been busy redecorating the house. Remember at Christmas when we repainted the playroom? Well, I figured it was time to do something else with it. I'm not yet ready to do a reveal, but soon... I also gave the kitchen a mini face lift. Now I'm obsessing over dining chairs. It's always something with me...

Alrighty, I realize that may not seem like the cliff notes version, but trust me it is. There is so much more happening around here. Life is full and exciting. And I'm really blessed.


Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Caleb's Blog

Caleb updated his blog. It's a glimpse of the craziness I deal with on a daily basis. Head over there and leave him some bloggy love. (Especially you Ms Kellie, since he has been driving me crazy, sure that you are checking his blog hourly and disappointed that there hasn't been anything new.)


Monday, August 03, 2009

Making sweet memories!

We are having a fabulous time with the grandparents. An absolute blast! I've said it before and I'm saying it again, as a military family we are so blessed to live this close to family. The kids see (at least) 1 of their grandparents, (at least) once a month. Blessing!!

Mama's house is the best place to stay because we each have our own rooms, our own bathroom, the boys have a play area full of their toys (that stay here at Nana's) and the girls have one with their toys (that stay here too! - I love not having to bring a thing from home. They have closets full of toys here!) For a family our size, this is awesome! There's lots to do in the area and a pool 4 houses down. And since the boys have been taking swim lessons this summer, the swimming pool has been a huge hit. Every afternoon, the boys go down to the pool with their grandpa and spend hours there playing with him. He's convinced that he will wear them out one day and I say, "Good luck!" and "Not likely!" They are way more likely to wear him out! And they have.

It really is amazing how far the boys have come this summer with their swimming. While at the pool yesterday, Luke was running in, doing cannon balls and yelling, "Fire in the hole!" Last summer he wouldn't even get in the big pool and at the beginning of this summer he wouldn't put his head in the water. Yep, we've come a long way!

Here are some pictures of the kids with my parents at the pool:

Nana and Geepa with the sisters.
Sisters hugging in the baby pool. These moments are why I need a DSLR! Those girlies move too fast for my camera.
Little Kate
1 picture, that's all I'm asking for. Can you please cooperate and look at mommy? puhleeze?
Ella. Gosh this girl is so cute, but dangerous in the water! She is sure that she knows how to swim and is always trying to wiggle out of my arms to swim on her own. No fear. She's crazy!
Nana and Ella
Geepa and his girls.

This summer, while here at Mama's, we found the pool to beat all pools! It is about a mile from my parents house and we can use it because it is one of the 15 pools in their association. It is simply amazing. The kids and I were there for 2 hours this morning and then went back this afternoon for another 2 hours! The kids were tired and hungry, but having so much fun they didn't want to go.

I didn't get any pictures today because I was too busy making sure the Shishers didn't drown playing with the Darlings, but here are some from the other day when Daddy came with us:
A picture of the cute little pool, complete with life guards! The deepest section is over by the slide and it is 2 feet, so the girls could still stand and the water was at their armpits. The most shallow section was 8 inches.
Lily Kate on the slide. She was very apprehensive at first, which is so true to her personality. I had to push her the first few times to at least make her try it. I know, so mean. I knew, though, that if she at least tried it she would love it. And I was right. By the 5th time she was laughing hysterically!
Ella. Once again, NO FEAR! She went down the first time with no hesitation. By the end of today she was going down on her stomach. The other moms were looking at me like I was nuts (for many reasons, the 4 kids being the first! i really should be used to the look by now...) and commenting on how fearless Ella is. That child loves the water.
We would catch them at the bottom of the slide, plop them on the edge of the pool and they were off to the stairs to do it all over again. The LOVED it!!
Crazy Ella...
The brothers had a blast too! They really liked holding hands on their way down. They are so blessed to have one another!!

We'll leave in a couple of days, but are already trying to figure out how to get over here at least one more time before school starts. Oh, I'm SO NOT ready for school to start...