Friday, November 28, 2008

Please Say Thank You

I found this today and I think it is not only a wonderful thing, no matter how you feel about the war, but something that everyone should take a few seconds to do. Those men and women are risking their lives to fight for our country. Thank you cards are the least we should be doing for them. Please take a few seconds to participate.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Today was one of those days. You know, one that made me want to scream and pull my hair out. A day full of tantrums, kids that didn't want to listen or do what they're supposed to, kids that woke up way too early, kids that are sick and or teething, kids that don't want to eat what they're given. Yes it was one of those days for all three kids.

The good thing is that today is over. The kids are in bed and asleep. I hope they sleep until around 7 which is their normal wake up time, instead of 5:45. I hope they wake up healthy and happy.

Tomorrow is a new day. A fresh start. Hopefully it will be a better day after all it is Thanksgiving. It should be a much better day. We'll be out of the house and around lots of family and lots of food. (Distractions and changes of scenery can be a wonderful thing for toddlers.) Tomorrow is a day to think of all of the things that we have to be thankful for. Some things at the top of my list are my wonderful husband and my 3 incredible children (who even after a rough day, I wouldn't trade a second of it for the world because I got to spend it with them), my parents who do so so much for everyone, my family that always has fun together, my friends, and the ability to stay at home with my kids.

I hope that everyone has a day full of family, friends, good food, and things that make wonderful memories. Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Quiet Lately

I've been pretty quiet on here lately. Not much on my mind I guess. Just battling sick kids. Sugar did finally get better, but woke with a fever yesterday, fever's gone today. Sweet has a cough and runny nose today. Bam has a bit of a runny nose. It amazes me that three kids who eat well, get lots of physical activity, get lots of sleep, and aren't in day care or school get sick this much. Who knows. I just want healthy kids for Thanksgiving. I don't know that we'll get to partake in the festivities if the kids are sick. I would hate to get our grandparents or anyone else sick for that matter.

I did get a letter back yesterday in regards to my info requests for Sweet and Sugar. I was pleasantly surprised to get a response that quickly. I was not happy when it said that it could take 120 days to get the info. Seriously? I know of people recently getting it in about four weeks so I'll keep my fingers crossed.

My arthritis (yes I'm in my 20s and have arthritis, apparently due to pregnancy, they never mention that do they?) has been doing better lately. I'm not sure if it's due to me being off of work; not using my hands like I did at work/less stress, or if it's the stuff I've been taking. I stopped taking the rx awhile ago. (I'm NOT recommending that anyone just stop their meds!) The idea of starting daily meds in my 20s doesn't sound like a good idea to me, regardless of how safe the Dr said it was even though he wanted to monitor my blood work to make sure. So instead I'm taking the over the counter Osteo Bi Flex and eating turmeric every day. Turmeric is aweful. I mix a little (and I do mean a little) in with my oatmeal in the morning. I hate the smell and the taste of it, but maybe it's helping.

I've even been able to start doing some of my old work outs. I've been able to start lifting a couple of times a week and I'm using my treadmill again. The arthritis is in my hands and my feet, which made those things difficult. I'm definately happy to be working out again. I feel so much better when I am.

Sweet and Sugar's new favorite thing is to argue. They will sit in their high chairs or be in the play room together and just start yelling NO! at each other for no apparent reason. It's highly annoying. I really hope that this faze doesn't last too long.

Here's some cuteness to put a smile on your face.

Sweet in my robe from when I was little.

Sugar screeching in delight at his brother after their naps.

Bam post nap. Looks fine from the front, but the hair is pretty rough in the back. Pictures just don't do it justice.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

National Adoption Month

This month is national adoption month. I think that it's fitting that it's November, the month of Thanksgiving. Everyday I am thankful for all of my children. I couldn't imagine life without them. All three of them are so incredibly different, yet all are amazing in their own ways. Each of them has their own unique personality. It's funny to see three children within a year of each other in age, raised by the same people,yet they are so different. I love to look back and see how they've grown, changed, and learned. They truly are amazing little people.

Recently I brought out Sweet and Sugar's life books to show them. They were enthralled with their pictures. Looking at the books brings back a lot of memories for me. I wonder what they remember about their foster moms, if anything. I hope that they'll treasure those pictures and the information that we have about their life before they came home. I'm trying to collect as much information as possible for them. Recently I sent away for some of the information that we had to give to customs. I also learned this week that there is another form that I can fill out to collect the rest of the information the government may have on the kids. I plan on making that request also.

I know that being a blended (or whatever to want to call it) family won't always be easy, but I hope that they always know that they were always wanted and loved. I hope that we can instill the knowledge that adoption is a choice of love on all sides.

People still ask how the three get along or what it's like to have all three. As you can see from the pictures they are all just normal brothers and their sister. They have their fights, but they love each other. They kiss each other before bed, they give hugs, they hold hands in the car, they're concerned when another is upset, they don't know life without each other. I hope that close bond that they currently share will always be there. For now, they are best friends. Even though they're getting bigger every day, they'll always be my babies.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

1-2-3-4-5 Sick

Sugar started us off with a cold over the weekend. It has officially spread through the house. Poor Emerson got it the worst and seems to be having a hard time kicking it. Finally today we did see some improvement. Hopefully his attitude will improve with his illness.
Thankfully Chuck did clean and bring in the rest of the outdoor toys that I wanted in the basement for the winter. Wow did they have fun with them the first night. We've spent most of our time between dinner and bedtime in the basement playing since. I need to move a few more toys down from upstairs. It's going to be very nice to have two play rooms this year. A change of scenery can make a world of difference in the attitudes of three toddlers.

Enjoying the playset in the basement.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Quality non kid time is a hard thing to come by sometimes after you have those precious bundles of joy at home. With Chuck working night and needing to sleep during the day or evenings, it becomes a challenge to see each other let alone have quality time together. It is an effort to keep our relationship up. Relationships aren't easy, they do require maintenance to run smoothly. The relationship that you had with your spouse before the kids came along is the reason that you and your spouse decided to have children in the first place. Make sure to put the needed effort into your relationship. Make time together even if it is just staying up to watch a movie or talk (we watched Strangers last week, very creepy).
Don't forget that your friendships also need maintenance. Once kids come along friendships can change. Friends that aren't married or don't have kids may drift away. Maybe they or you think that there's nothing in common to talk about or maybe they don't know when a good time to call is (sometimes there isn't a good time, but you need to make time). Don't forget to put effort into your friendships. Everyone needs a few really good friends to connect with.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What 3 Toddlers Can Do

This is what three toddlers can do for or rather to a house, more specifically my toddlers in my house.

These are just two of the rooms that had toys scattered through them the other day, after a fun day of playing. What you need to remember is that toddlers can also help undo this. My children know that picking up their toys is something that needs to be done, not something that magically happens or is mom or dad's job. They help pick up their toys before nap time and bed time. (Yes there were this many toys brought out between nap time and bedtime.) The lesson is that even young children can help. It's much easier to start with good habits than to try and correct bad habits, not that my children don't have any of those (my sons are napping on the couches at the moment instead of in their beds). Even my 1 year old is catching on. Some days he helps without prompting, other days I may hand him a magnet or two and ask him to please put them on the frig. The point is that he's already learning that it's his responsibility along with all of the rest of us.

A Shot at PT

Well I decided to give potty training a shot earlier this week. We've had the potties and undies for months for months and let me tell you that it's not easy to find undies for a kid as small as Sugar. I only found one brand that's small enough for him. They occasionally sit on the potties and have seen the undies, but not worn them yet. Once in awhile they will ask to sit on the potty and actually produce (TMI I know). Most mornings I ask them if they want to wear big kid undies today. The usual reply is no, but this week they said yes. So we put the potties in a central location for the day and got out the undies and had the discussion that we need to pee and poo in the potty if we're going to wear the undies. I set a timer for 20 minutes and every 20 minutes we sat on the potties. Sounds good right? Not so much.

Sweet doesn't like wet panties. She knows that you're not supposed to pee in your panties, but she hasn't gotten to the point where she knows when she's going to pee. Instead, she would wet herself and then say sorry to let me know that she needed new panties. Five wet panties later, we were back in a diaper for lunch.
Sugar doesn't care if he's wet or not. I was hopeful since he wasn't going through the undies like his sister, but that's just because he didn't pee as often. He didn't even acknowledge that he had gone. So he also was back in a diaper for lunch.

A little disappointing? Yes. But they are young. They will eventually get it. And yes, I do realize that there will be many many many a pair of wet undies to come. After all accidents do happen.
Potty training is really no fun at all. It definitely makes a parent feel totally and completely incompetent. So we'll give it a rest. We'll only sit on the potties when they ask to (Sweet did get up from her nap asking to sit on the potty but to no avail). Hopefully they'll be ready to try again in a few more weeks. In the mean time, they do love their potty book have you seen my potty.

I'd add a few cute pics, but my photo software seems to be on the fritz which equals one unhappy momma.
I finally got it working so here we go. Pictures of my little ones eating some freshly baked cookies the other night as a rare treat. Did they ever so enjoy them.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Prize Giveaway I Would Love To Win

blissfully domestic is giving away an Epson Artisan 800.
I would love to win this! Wouldn't it be great not to have to drag three small children to Staples when I need to make copies, speaking of I still need to make copies for the G-884. I could actually print some of my photos at home instead of hauling three small children to whatever store I end up sending my pics to. Maybe if I had one of these beautiful machines I would have the motivation to finish Sweet and Sugar's life books and maybe start Bam' baby book. Hmm what a novel idea. For now I'll just dream of winning and keep my fingers crossed.

Cutting Back

Now that I'm a SAHM we've had to find ways to save money/cut expenses. Here's a few things that we've done. We've managed to cut over $800 from our monthly budget. Every little penny helps right now, especially when staying at home. I'd love more ideas. Feel free to leave ideas as comments.

  1. We had an extra vehicle for Chuck to pick up the kids in (my mom provided most of the childcare while I was a work. I love my family!) This was because his car is not big enough for three car seats. We bought an old used van to do the trick. It wansn't great on gas but it worked. With me at home we don't need it. We put it out at the road for sale and had two people interested. It sold within a week for what we paid for it. Yeah!
  2. One less car = cheaper car insurance.
  3. Me not driving 20+ miles(one way) to work six days a week saves a lot of gas money and allows my car to be listed as for pleasure on our car insurance, which lowers it again.
  4. This may be old fashioned and more work, but I've gone to hanging our laundry to dry. We have a nice basement that allows me to do this.
  5. Unplugging appliances and miscelaneous items that you don't use on a regular basis, like our TV and stereo in the basement. Unplug your cell phone charger when not using it too!
  6. Our light bulbs are energy saving bulbs. Most of ours were already. If they burn out let the manufacturer know and they will replace them. Note, our generic bulbs were much easier to get replaced than our name brand ones.
  7. Shop for sales. If something is on sale for a really good price and is either non perishable or can be frozen, buy up! We got canned veggies for 25 cents a can. That's a good price around here. We bought enough to last a few months since the store didn't have a limit.
  8. Shop at the cheapest store. I used to shop at a local grocery store that I grew up shopping at. Lately the produce is getting worse and the prices are getting higher. Now I do most of my shopping at Super Walmart (one stop for everything is much easier when you have three kids). I do go to other stores for items that are on really good sales.
  9. Turn off what you're not using. Lights and TVs don't need to be on in empty rooms. Remember to turn off your computer, printer, and monitor when not in use.
  10. Open the blinds and let some natural light in!
  11. Eat at home. It really is cheaper and healthier. Plus cooking usually yields left overs.
  12. Get creative with what you can make at home. Like this recipe.
  13. Consider transfering loans to credit unions if possible. They usually have cheaper rates and typically do not charge early termination fees.
  14. Review your cell phone policy. We've gone to one now that I'm at home since Chuck needs it at night and I need it during the day.
  15. Programable thermostat. Keep it cooler at night (you sleep better when it's cooler) and when you're not at home.
  16. Turn down your thermostat. A couple of degrees can make a big difference. Plus why do you need it to be almost 70 when you're wearing winter clothes?
  17. Make a grocery list and stick to it as much as possible and don't shop when you're hungry.
  18. Buy generic when possible. Try generic. It doesn't hurt to try it once. Not all generic items are as good, you have to try them to find out.
  19. Use coupons when buying name brand items. There are a lot of coupon sites out there. Some people love them, but I'm not a huge fan. Plus not all stores accept them (check ahead of time). We get most of our coupons from the Sunday paper, which we don't subscribe to. We get them from relatives or Chuck's work since no one else uses them.
  20. Watch for free after rebate or bogo items. Even if you don't need it right now, wouldn't it be nice not to have to run out and buy a tube of toothpaste next time you run out or some cold medicine next time you need it? Coupons are also great for bogo items. Rite Aid tends to do a lot of free after rebate and bogo items.
  21. Grow your own veggies and fruit if possible. We haven't had much of a garden in two years, but plan on giving it another try next year. I hope to grow some fresh veggies and enough tomatoes that I can freeze most of what we'll need for the year. I would love to have some more fruit trees. We have two apple trees, one is sadly dying, and the other isn't big enough to produce yet. My mother has some pear trees and gave us some pears, pearsauce, and pear jelly this year.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Off My Horse

I will say one more thing before I dismount. I definitely recommend reading the left behind series.

Back to normal stuff. Today was a pretty good day. Chuck was able to accomplish a few things off of his to do list. Plus he actually wrote out a list of things he wants to get done, so maybe I can help with a few things when kids are sleeping. One of the things he did today was turn Bam's car seat around to forward facing, which makes the fact that I no longer have babies, only toddlers final. Bam definitely enjoyed the new view on the way to and from the Dr office tonight. He actually stayed awake, which has never happened. He normally is asleep within about 2 minutes of leaving the driveway. If only I could have afforded to pay someone to drive him around all night when he was a baby, maybe he would have slept through a night before 5 months. But that's another story.

We also got to take the kids to the park today. I wanted to take them for a walk through the woods before the weather got cold and wet again. It was definitely fun. We walked a couple miles though the woods and around the park and then they got to play on the play ground for awhile. Sweet and Bam were pretty pooped by that time so they didn't play that long and definitely not long enough for Sugar's liking and yes, he let us and everyone else within a 20 mile radius know what his opinion was.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

It's Done

Well the future of our country has been decided. Now that Democrats are in control of the White House and Congress, lets see if they can actually fix everything that they claim they can. I hope that the transition goes as smoothly as possible and that this doesn't turn out to be a big mistake. I'm afraid of Obama's lack of experience. I'm afraid of other countries taking advantage of that, or how they may challenge him. I'm afraid that we may have another attack here on our own soil. I'm afraid that his health care plan will get implemented and drive this country that much farther into debt (Hawaii tried a similar one and had to shut it down after a few months because it was way too costly). I'm afraid of his take to the rich to give to the poor (robin hood want to be) ideas that make me think of socialism. Last I knew America was a great nation because it was a democracy and people could have hopes and dreams of achieving great things, and getting to hold on to what they earned. I hope that my fears are not realized. Just my opinion, please don't send hate mail.

On a lighter note. We got out and went shopping today, just to get out. The thought of having another day like yesterday was too much. We went to the outlet malls to walk around and so we could ride the train (they are Sugar's favorite thing in the world right now). The train was down for maintance, which was a huge bummer, but Sugar took it really well. I think he was just happy to be somewhere different.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day

Hopefully after today all of the hype and constant talk about the election will be over. I'm tired of all of the commercials and bickering. I'm tired of media who tells what they want to tell. I would love to hear an honest newscast that doesn't contain anyone's opinion, just the truth. Too bad I don't think that will ever happen.

No pictures today. Today is one of those days that makes me want to pull my hair out. I have 3 very ornery kids today. Lots of fits, getting into things that they're not supposed to touch, yelling, taking, etc. I think these days are just to remind me of how good they normally are.

We're still trying to adjust to the time change here. My kids are very schedule oriented. With 3 this close in age you kind of have to have a set schedule to help control the chaos. The time change always messes with their schedule. I think the boys are starting to adjust, I hope. Sweet is still struggling bad. She's waking before 6, wanting to sleep during lunch, and asking for jamies and night night during dinner. Hopefully she'll figure it out soon.

I did cart wheels in front of the kids the other day. Or at least my lame attempt at them. Watching the 3 of them try to figure it out was hilarious. Sugar gives up after a minute and just starts rolling around. Sweet will try and try and try. Bam is even trying to figure it out. Too funny. Today I stood on one leg. It's amazing to see how much or rather how little balance a two year old has. I was jumping on one leg too. That totally stumped them.

Hopefully tomorrow will be better. I normally look forward to Wednesday and Thursday because Chuck has them off, but he has to go to Columbus for a test tomorrow, which means no daddy to help out and I'm taking the kids for flu shots on Thursday. That doesn't sound like fun either.

Monday, November 3, 2008

More Beautiful Weather!

It is gorgeous here today! I took the kids out to play this morning, which made them and myself very happy. I miss being able to take them out whenever they need to blow off some steam. They say that it's supposed to be nice all week. I hope that they are right. Hopefully we'll all have some fun in the snow this year once it shows up. Last year we didn't get to enjoy it too much.She decided to pick every dandelion that she could find. She was running around the yard squealing trying to find more.

I'm not sure what this tree did to deserve kisses, but it got quite a few this morning. Silly girl.

My little athlete.

The swing always seems to make this little guy extra sleepy.

It's really amazing to see how much the kids have changed since last year. At this time last year, no one was walking let alone talking much. Now all three are running, climbing, jumping, etc. Sweet and Sugar can say their ABCs and count to 10. They learn so much so fast. Last year I taught Sweet and Sugar some sign language and it really helped before they could talk. Now they love signing and will sign while they talk or they'll sign to us or each other for fun. I'm starting to try to get Bam to sign, but he's defiantely not as interested in it as they were. He's not nearly as interested in book either. Sometimes I'm glad that I only have two gabber gaws talking and other times I think it would be so much easier if Bam could communticate a little better.

Well, the yogurt turned out ok. It's definately yobaby consistancy, which is a little runny. After you add fruit it's really runny, but the kids like it. I think I'll add some gellitin the next time I make it though.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

2 Days Until It's All Over

I'm so tired of all of the election garbage. I don't care who you're voting for, I think that we can all agree that we're tired of the name calling, commercials (tv and radio), junk mail, and phone calls. The today show had something on this morning talking about election withdrawal. Are you kidding? At this point I'm not thrilled with either candidate, I'm going to vote for who I think is the lesser of two evils.

This is a good website to find information on the issues on your ballot.

On another note. We went out to dinner last night with my parents, grandparents, and one of my aunts. We tried somewhere different with the kids. Sugar was a little ornery in the beginning, which is very unusual for my kids to be ornery in public (thank God). But all in the the food was good, prices were good, and I think everyone had a good time. We haven't gone out to eat much since the kids came along, so it's always nice when things go well at a different restaurant.

Today I'm trying something new. I use the crock pot a lot. It was the easiest way to make sure that there would be something good for the kids and Chuck to eat when I was working. Now I'm not using it as much, but still like it because it's easy and I have a lot of recipes for it. I've tried some of the recipes from this site, but haven't been a huge fan of most of them. A lot of them call for special ingredients, which honestly just isn't in the budget right now. But I saw one yesterday that I decided to try. I'm making the kids yogurt today. Kids yogurt is so expensive, and this seems cheap and easy so I hope it turns out well.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


The fever broke and we got to go to the party and trick or treating. Yeah! I think they had fun. I'm not sure they understood at first, but after they got candy, it was all good. They didn't make it very long before calling it quits and heading back to the party. Sugar enjoyed handing out candy to the other trick or treaters once we got back. Bam was still grumpy and it continued all night. Sweet was definitely stuck to mommy last night. All in all it was a pretty good night and the weather was beautiful. Here's a few pics.

Halloween has definitely made me think more about Bam and his nut allergy. I really hope that he's one of the lucky few that out grow it. Not only does he not get to have the easy go to lunch of PB&J, but NUTS ARE IN EVERYTHING! Just look at some candy wrappers, most say processed in a facility or on equipment that processes nuts, or may contain nuts. Even stuff that you would never guess to have nuts. We're going to have to buy some nut free candy when he's older to trade him for what he gets trick or treating or have him trade with Sweet and Sugar. If he doesn't outgrow it Halloween definitely isn't going to be as fun. We'll always have to inspect for safety and read labels.

Grandma A got the kids new shirts for Halloween. They are wearing them today and look too cute in them.
Can you tell that she didn't want her picture taken? She has fallen in love with everything pink and Elmo. So a pink Elmo shirt could not be any more perfect.

My little monkey. Too cute. And yes his pants are rolled at the top. I haven't taken in this years pants yet. The poor kid is too skinny to hold them up. Even the adjustable waist pants fall down and I can't find a belt small enough to fit him. Plus we're going to try potty training soon and a belt won't make that any easier. At least he smiled for me. He loves to have his picture taken. Every time the camera comes out he starts saying CHEESE.

My little Charlie Brown. I guess we should have named him after his father. Too funny. Definitely a perfect shirt for him.