Monday, March 29, 2010


This is a Monday I can live with. My 24 hour bug is gone, I have two fewer extra kids to look after than I thought, and it's amazing to see the way the kids play when I'm not always on conflict resolution mode.

Puzzles, books, block towers, and snack time. I was even able to sort and put away most of the weekend's laundry that was sitting in our room. You should see the linen closet too. Hubby and I went through it and we now have a garbage bag or two for the Sally Ann, and this morning (with the ever present help from the Boys) I even organized what we have left.

Boy 2 went down easily for his nap, but not the Boy, but that's alright... I enlisted his help to clean up the puzzle and book mess in the living room (Boy 2 pulled every single book off the middle shelf and tried to put them in a basket. The baskwas too small, but that didn't deterr him.)

It's definitely fun to watch the differences that esch child brings into the home. The Boy is actually fairly quiet, enjoys looking at books by himself, and has become quite the talker. This morning he ran into his room and closed the door tight. I can't even remember the reason he was upset. After a few minutes I asked him if he was going to come out. The response? "Never, never, never!" Where did he pick that up? Asked if he would come out for lunch. Response? "It's not lunch time yet!" Fairly astute, but he doesn't tell time yet. He's only three and a half!

Boy 2 does everything in his own way and in his own time. Not a hug or kiss will you get from him unless he wants to. When an idea pops into his head (like "we need to go downstairs now") He will drag you to where he wants you and when you dare to utter the "N" word, his entire universe collapses in front of your eyes. It may mean that I'm callous and hard, but more often than not when he reaches that point I find it very difficult not to laugh. Then, when he's playing when it's just him and his brother, the Boy will be reading and Boy 2 will be being an airplane or a helicopter. Being an airplane means, going "bbbbbbbbbbbbbb" with arms outstretched and runing around, and around, and around. Helicopters spin, so, arms open wide, spinning in little circles like a top until he topples over dizzy.

The absolute best thing about watching them play, though, is when the extras all go home, Daddy is here, and we've either just finished eating supper, or we're waiting for it to be ready. Daddy will take off, with Boys in hot persuit, and they'll all run around and around and around. Then Daddy will stop, let the Boys catch him, and the Boy will take off "Catch me. catch me!" Or it'll be the Boy urging Boy 2 " let's get him, let's get him." They make me tired just watching them. Then, post bath and pre bed, the stories are magical.

I LOVE being a part of this home. I feel incredibly blessed to watch these kids grow and develop in front of my eyes. And it isn't just the physical or cognitive growth that amazes me. It's the Boy running up to me and asking for us to say prayers for Daddy so he comes home safe, it's reading the children's bible and asking questions that they know the answers to, it's being able to say the Lord's prayer every night and having (at least the Boy) be able to recite some of it along with us. I am really, truly blessed.

Friday, March 26, 2010

What a week!

What a way to end not only a long day, but a long week too! I take in childcare to help supplement income, since I really didn't want Hubby to work these last two semesters. It's all been quite casual since the middle of November, but this week was a glance back to what I did full time in my home from the middle of August until November, and outside of the home before I had the Boy three and a half years ago. All week I've had three full time children in my home (girls aged 5, almost 2, and almost 18 months) plus another almost three year old the last two mornings.

Since sleep is an evil word in this house, my own boys get up anywhere between five and six in the morning. Sleeping in is seven. It usually starts with Boy2 trundling wandering from one side of our bed to the other, waiting for one of us to reach out and bring him onto the bed (we have a step stool at the foot of the bed so he can do it himself, but do you think he'd use it at four in the morning?). Then, after being smacked and kicked for an hour or so, the Boy (who is by this point in the night sleeping on a little mat at the foot of the bed instead of his own perfectly fine bed) sits up and says " Mum! I need go pee! (or poop, depending on how urgently he wants to get up)". So the day starts. With the Boy sitting on the toilet (ususally doing nothing) he says that he slept "lots and lots" and was it time to get up now, and "I need Juice."

This week, the extra kids came at about twenty mintues to seven, and the chaos is immediate. The boys arehappy to see the girls, and vice versa. The honeymoon lasts two minutes (if I'm lucky) and the next hours are full of tears, screams, hitting, laughing, giggling, hugging, and "piggy rides" (this costitutes the 5 year old holding the arms of the younger ones over her shoulders and leading them around and around). The only time there is relative silence is when food is involved or it's nap time. Really, what else can you expect from four girls and two boys aged five and younger. By week's end everyone is more than ready to go home for a few days.

But today, between overtired and overstimulated children and an overtired and pregnant me, we were stretched. Did some crafts (thanks to the good friend who got the boys a subscription to Chirp), ate pancakes for luch (a HUGE hit), enforced nap/quiet time for everyone to recharge, and ending the day with painting (the paint with water books are FANTASTIC!) while good old Nat King Cole was playing (my way of dealing with stress). Plus, Hubby brought home supper for he and I. The Boy has been asking of macaroni and cheese all week. I think we went through nearly a whole case, just this week. Plus tonight he had three helpings. Hubby knew I was having A DAY, and brought home a couple of sourdough loaves and some dip. Tzatziki for him and asiago and artichoke for me (yum, yum, yum, yum, yum!).

It'll be bedtime shortly. It won't take long since neither one really slept as much as they should have. Then Hubby and I will have a bit of down time before bed. Tomorrow will be grocery shopping ( we really need more mac 'n cheese), reading, naps, maybe a walk, and plenty of relaxing. It's funny how the definintion of relaxing changes once you have kids.

Plus side on all of this: I've started feeling baby 3's movements more steadily this week ( I can't believe I'm 16 weeks already), I'm thinking pancakes and bacon for breafast in the morning, and my boys are actually wanting a bath tonight. Life is really good right now!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Easter Baking!

It's always exciting for me, leading up to Easter. I realize we are still in Lent and shouldn't even be contemplating the Alleluia of Easter morning, but I can't help it. Palm/Passion Sunday this week, and I have had music from Jesus Christ Superstar stuck in my head for almost two weeks already. I really should just go downstairs and watch it, if only to get it out of my head.

Going hand in hand with Jesus Christ Superstar (a big thanks to my mother in law and Hubby for introducing it to me seven years ago) comes the baking. I come from Latvian stock, and a holiday treat that we always did, first Grandma (Dad's mom) and then my own mother, is perogs (pee-rogs). For as tasty as they are, I realize that most people have never had them, so I will tell you about them. They are a bread, sweetbread, in a crescent shape stuffed with fried bacon and onion. Now you have to get the slab bacon, not the pre-sliced stuff. You cut the bacon into little squares (or if you're like Hubby and myself into fair-sized chunks) and fry it up with the onion. Drain it off and let it cool while you prepare the dough. My parents always do the bacon the night/day before and then start the rest first thing in the morning.

When the sweetbread dough is risen, you take a little handful, flatten it like a disc, put a teaspoon (or heaping teaspoon, if you want) and then close it over, sealing it and shaping it into a crescent. Fill the cookie sheet with them, let the rise until doubled and cover with an egg wash before baking to a golden brown. They really do taste the best right out of the oven, still warm. To give you an idea of how much Hubby and I like these, I went and made a batch at Christmas and then had to make more the following week. But we reserve this treat for Christmas and Easter alone. They really are alot of work, especially when you get lots of people together, because you want everyone to have some, both to eat and to take home. There usually isn't any other cooking done that day since everyone is snacking on perogs.

The boys aren't as fond of them yet, Boy 2 LOVED them last Easter, but not as much last Christmas, so we will see as time passes how much that changes. All I know is that slab bacon is on the grocery list for Saturday so sometime in the next week we'll be making a batch or two shortly. If anyone living in the city wants to try some, give us a call, and we'll either take some to you or come on over. I love having excuses to bake!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

starting thoughts

It is way too late in the day to be doing this... but the kids are asleep and it's not quite bedtime. I am going to try this blogging thing for a couple of reasons. 1) I've tried to journal off and on throughout my life. In recent years (ie. the last decade or so) it's been more off than on. 2) I am horrible at remembering things unless they are written down. I'm hoping I'll be able to look back on postings and remember where the kids were at different parts of the journey. 3) I just like getting thoughts done and seeing what people think of them. Plus I'm horrible at keeping in touch and I think this will be a connector.

Today I discovered a couple of things: I discovered that goldfish crackers and cheese bread enjoy going swimming in a sea of peppermint tea sweetened with honey (I don't know if the honey had anything to do with it...).

I discovered that a nerf football is nothing when it comes in contact with a little girl intent on eating it.

I discovered that my eldest little boy (hereafter named the Boy for privacy purposes who is currently three and a half) really can eat macaroni and cheese for both lunch and supper for three days in a row without getting sick.

I discovered that I can look at a recipe, find I don't have all of the ingredients, and adjust it and still have it taste, not only edible, but pretty dang good.

I discovered that my current youngest child (hereafter named Boy2 who is just recently turned two) would rather sleep with socks on than his soother.

I think that's enough for starters. Have a great night, bloggerworld!