31 January 2009

Day Full O' Fun

What a crazy, insane, fun day! We started the day by taking a trip out to our friends house to go sledding. The "hill" of choice was more of a 90* drop than a slope. The kids didn't seem to mind, though, and the dads loved it! I sat inside with Bella and the other kids trickled in as they got cold and tired. So we cozied up by the fire reading stories and warming little hands and toes.

After everyone was too cold to stay out any longer, they all came in for hot cocoa and snacks. Snacks turned into ordering pizza for lunch and we all lazed the day away chatting and laughing together. It was great for the kids to play and the grown ups to relax. The boys even went out for a second round of sledding! Christopher loves going out side with his friend Will, sans grown-ups, because it makes him feel so independent! Their property is covered in woods and creeks that are perfect for curious and adventurous little boys.

We finally headed home late in the afternoon. Which meant that Andrew and I had to hurry up in order to get ready for our big event that evening! We got all gussied up, put Isabella in a sparkly dress and headed out for the night. I never dress my girls in sparkles; I much prefer smocking and puffed sleeves, but for this evening, sparkles were perfect! She was adorable! The event was nice and Bella was pretty well behaved. Her teeth are coming in and really bothering her, so she was a little grumpy, but nothing a little carrot cake and a nursing wouldn't fix! And of course, all of the people there thought she was wonderful! She was the only baby there (I guess most people don't take their kids to fancy dinner-dances?!!? =), and she was pretty popular!

30 January 2009

Quick Catch Up

Wow. . . I sure didn't mean to go another week without updating. Oops! For the sake of easy recap, I'll do another "Seven Quick Takes" and then it's back to our regularly scheduled blogging . . . I hope!


We are finally well! Last Saturday, I thought we were all over our lingering illness, so we went to a friends house for a game night. It was great fun, until Grace threw up all over me!! Ahh. Poor baby. But now, I think we are finally in the clear and I don't think any of our friends got sick!

Yesterday was our first homeschool coop. The kids really enjoyed it, even though it was really long. They are taking an art class, a virtue class, and spanish. It is the polar opposite of the unschooling philosophy we live by here at home, but it is nice for them to have a learning environment with their friends and that is different than home. We'll see how it goes through the rest of the year. It only meets twice a month, which is really nice. What I don't understand is that these other moms are so determined to homeschool, but then want co-op and other group activities to mirror a school environment so completely. Am I missing something??

Isabella had her "real" food the other day ("real" as in, we purposely gave it to her -- she didn't forage it for herself from below PeterXavier's chair). We gave her carrots; she didn't like them much.
Grace and I went out last night on a "Girly Date." It was great fun! First off, we both got a much needed hair cut. Gracie looks so grown up!! It is really cute and her curls bounce up a lot more now than they did before. We also bought her a couple new tops. She loved having a say in her new clothes! Then we split a Cinnabon, because isn't the consumption of insane numbers of ooey gooey calories a requisite part of a girly date?
Isabella finally got a couple of teeth. The two on the bottom are popping through. They are making her incredibly cranky and she nurses constantly!! She is nusing right now.
We have a big weekend coming up. Fun times tomorrow morning sledding with out friends. They have a big hilly, wooded piece of property South of town and the kids are really excited to go flying down the very steep hills. I am not so excited to see them flying, but I trust that their daddy will keep them safe. (Because I will be inside. Where it is warm. Sipping coffee and watching out the ginormous windows).
Also this weekend, Andrew and I are going on a hot date to the Ebony and Ivory Ball at Purdue. Hilarious. I guess it is super fancy -- it's mostly black tie, but Andrew is wearing a suit. I might borrow a dress from Stephanie, except that she is like three feet taller than I am. I think I am going to be a total nerd and take a couple dresses to her house tomorrow and have her help me choose. In the warmth. While the kids are playing. And the daddys are sledding.
Belle is still nursing and the others are getting into mischief. I am off to do my duties. I'll try to post weekend adventure pictures as they come!

23 January 2009

Seven Sick Takes

I mean quick takes. Sorry. These days, we are a bit more sick than quick, though!

Just when you think life is running smoothly, stop thinking. Put on the auto-pilot and hold on to you seats; things are about to get rocky.
I am eternally grateful for all of the many blankets, towels, washclothes, and sheets that I have. I never knew I would need all of them at once. Now to tackle that laundry . . .
If you have a child with even the remotest possibility of vomiting do not, under any circumstances, put him in the top bunk to sleep. Just trust me on this one. Unless, of course, you enjoy changing two sets of sheet, two comforters, two pillowcases, and that trusty guard rail. If you like that sort of thing, then have at it. But don't say I didn't warn you.
When your husband comes home after the long (sick) day, bearing pizza and a free pass to the nearest shower -- run. Because they might see you. And the pizza. And you just might now be able to handle that.
Sick babies are amazingly sweet to snuggle. Even four of them at once. And even if they do occasionally vomit on you.
The upside to everyone being ill, is that they take random and spontaneous naps. In this child declared "No Nap Zone", that is a welcomed treat!
There is always hope. Maybe tonight, everyone will sleep soundly and peacefully. And even if they don't, at least it's Saturday and Andrew will be here to share in the suffering (I mean fun!)
To be honest, it was harder to come up with seven that I was expecting! Hop on over to Jen at Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes!

20 January 2009

Last night, I went to bed early, thinking how lucky we have been that no one has gotten sick this winter. Last winter was pretty rough, with kids getting sick repeatedly. At about 12:10, Belle woke up to eat and I thought how nice it is when you go to sleep early and get woken up only to see that you have tons of time left to sleep.

And then at 12:15, Christopher woke up and vomited all over everything. And in the process of cleaning up and resettling, everyone else woke up as well. Eventually, everyone got back to sleep, but it was clear that Isabella wasn't feeling well. Today, we are living on a healthy diet of movies, naps, and water.

That's the last time I revel in my own awesomeness and jinx myself!

19 January 2009

Fun with Math

We were driving in the car today and I was trying -- and failing -- to explain to Christopher what "division" means. Math is not my strong suit. So Andrew, resident Math Man, took over. He briefly explained (well) and then gave the kids a few problems to figure out.

First he says to Grace "If I have three cars and need to give one to each of you: Christopher, Grace, and PeterXavier, how man would each of you get?"

Grace: Easy! One -- I would get a pink bug car, Christopher would get a Porche and PeterXavier would get a baby car!

And then for Christopher, he says: "If I have nine M&M's and want to give each of you an even amount, how many would you wach get?"

"Oh! Grace and PeterXavier would each get two, and I would get five!"

15 January 2009

We Could Use a Little . . .

Global Warming.


I'm freezing here in this NEGATIVE NINE DEGREE weather.

But, I must say, this is awesome. When I am boiling water for my third cup of French Press coffee, I may have to make a bit extra to turn into a cloud. If you are also afraid of losing your toes to frost bite (inside the house), you may want to have a look.

ETA: This is utterly amazing. If you're getting cabin fever and have a bit of ingenuity, give it a try!

14 January 2009

Snowy Day

It's been a beautiful, snowy day here. I hear it's slippery and slidey our there, but I opted not to find out myself and declared us "snowed in". Technically, I could have gotten the car out, but no one else around here needs to know that! So we skipped our gym time and got some old fashioned fresh air and exercise. I spent 30 minutes tracking down snow gear and bundling them up so they could spend ten minutes outside before pronouncing it too cold.
One of my favorite things is when all of the kids play together for longer that 0.3 seconds without fighting. Here everying is playing happily together in our little nook. This cheery little picture actually lasted a good portion of the day.

Since is was a cozy snow day, I baked a batch cookie bars. Mmm, warm and cozy.! Nothing like the chococherry lava yumminess that Annie made the other day. They were so yummy that my non-dessert eating husband barely even shared one bite with me! He probably won't even eat my cookie bars!

12 January 2009

These pictures are small because I hijacked them from Stephanie's facebook. I forgot both my camera AND my video camera last night. Luckily Stephanie got a bunch of great pictures, including a smashing one of my husbands rear end. You can view it on FB, if you care to (sorry, Joannie. Just one more reason to join the crowds, I guess!).

Anyway, last night we had our reschedules Epiphany Party with a bunch of our good friends. There was a yummy "king cake" and PeterXavier won the prize. The prize went to the person who found the very large Brazil nut in his piece of cake. PeterXavier didn't really "get" it and promptly ate the very large nut in one very large bite. Luckily, he was still awarded his prize -- a big bag of chocolates for his mama to eat.

The children all (kind of) acted out the Nativity Story, from the Annunciation to the Birth of Our Lord. It was totally adorable, despite the fact that we had three angels, two shepherds and only one wise man. And a dad who stood in for Joseph, because all of the boys wanted to be shepherds. It was a bit chaotic, but absolutely charming! And the kids had a blast and that is what really matters.

09 January 2009

What is WITH the Blood today???

Oh my. What a day. As far as I know, everyone is still breathing. But that is saying something. It's been an amazingly bloody day today. First, Isabella cut her finger. Mysteriously. I looked down and the floor was covered in blood. After I figured out it was coming from a minuscule cut on her finger, I calmed down a bit. But then it took at least half an hour to stop bleeding! Luckily, I could recall Mr. Studebaker's "Freak Week" in high school biology (how PC!) to know that girls can't be hemophiliacs, other wise I would have been wondering!

And then, PeterXavier's nose erupted like Mt. Vesuvius all. over. creation. His face, his pajamas (yes, he was still wearing them at 2 in the afternoon. shoot me), my craft room, my kitchen, me. In all his bloody glory, I was certain he had stuck something up there. Surely this would merit my days trip to the ER. But, no, it stopped as abruptly as it began.

So far, we've gone 47 minutes without blood or tears. It's a record!

Nine months in, Nine months out

Isabella "turned" nine months old yesterday. I snapped a few pictures of her -- digital cameras, blogs, and computerized "scrapbooks" make this documentation SO MUCH easier. I have more pictures of Belle than of any of the other kids!
Clearly, we haven't had any "adjustment issues." Unless you count trying to smother her with love!
In other news, it's been a wonderfully slow week here in our house. We've been trying out a new bedtime routine and it is working beautifully. The kids have fully recovered from Christmas craziness and have been enjoying playing together and getting back into a normal type of day!

07 January 2009

A Christmas' End

I emailed a friend on Monday lamenting the fact that, after a glorious nine day vacation from work, Andrew was gone and here I was alone in a house with four kids. She informed me that, husband or no, it's still Christmas and we must still party. In fact, she claimed, Jesus demands it -- it's His party, and it ain't over. So, party we did. But now, it is over. Yesterday was Epiphany, and the Christmas Season has ended. Although, our Epiphany Party, due to illness has been postponed until Sunday. Does this mean I can still party? I say, why not!

In that spirit, we celebrated the Three Wise Men last night with a "King Cake" just like we did when we were young. It was fun to see the kids find the "prize" (a quarter). PeterXavier couldn't believe it! Money! In my cake! Two year old joy is so great!

I thouroughly enjoy the Catholic tradition of spreading Christmas over 12 days. Christ deserves a long and drawn out celebration, most certainly. But my more boring self is glad to see the slower pace of life return. Although nothing is truly slow around here!

01 January 2009

Happy New Year!

We rang in the New Year Gatsy style. Good food, good friends, and plenty of good drink! We went to a friends "Great Gatsby" party where everyone dressed up twenties style and all of the kids ran around like crazy and most of them made it to Midnight!

Andrew is purposly not smiling in this picture to make it more "accurate." And I think Christopher is following suit.

This ukelele has become a permanent fixture with PeterXavier the last few days. He even took it to Mass and then tried to serenade Fr. Tim at the party.