Friday, March 27, 2009

Spring Break Fun

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

The boys' spring break was off to a pretty slow start this week. Sure, we went to the mall and played in the play area. We went to the bookstore and the boys were able to spend their birthday gift cards. And yes, we even got to play outside a bit. But by midweek, Todd and I wanted to step things up a bit for the boys.

We decided to head out of town for an overnight stay at a nearby hotel and waterpark. It would be the boys first time staying overnight in a hotel, and we knew that would be excitement enough. Add an indoor waterpark to the mix, and that is the recipe for fun my friends!

The minute we arrived the boys were awed by the huge windows looking out on the waterpark and all the massive dead animals.
Of course they were over the moon with the awesome bunk beds.

Even eating snacks on the table in the hotel room was exciting!

But the boys were most anxious to get to that waterpark. "Can we go now? Can we go now? Can we go NOW???"
Benny was a bit overwhelmed to start off with. But soon he was jumping, splashing, and sliding down the slides just like his big brothers.

The boys played until way past dinner time. They ravenously ate their dinner and dutifully posed for a family photo on the way out of the restaurant.

We wondered how Ben would sleep in his pack 'n play next to our bed, but he was too exhausted to fight sleep. They all slept like champions.

And the next day it was time to hit the video arcade.

After that we checked out of the hotel and headed over the the Packers Hall of Fame to give the boys a little history lesson. We started with a movie.
They were mildly entertained, but they had the most fun in the kiddie play area. What do ya think? Do we have some future Packer players, or what?

Seeing how cute those boys looked in green and gold reminded us to stop at the Packer ProShop on the way out and stock up on our Packer gear. Everyone got a new packer shirt or sweatshirt of choice. Even the little lady.

It was the perfect minibreak. We played, we laughed, and we ran them until they were so exhausted they could barely hold their heads up.
And now that we are back home... I need a nap.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Belly Shot- 5 Months

There it is! It is starting to poke out. Though mostly, I just look thick. I think I may be switching to maternity jeans soon so I don't break the button on these. Might be wise.

And can I get an "AMEN!" to the return of the K-Lo bootie? I mean, sheesh! I think that thing is bigger than the belly. See what happens when I stop running?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

WW- His Lovin' Arms

No one wants to be left out and daddy is happy to oblige.
Think he'll be able to fit another one in there somewhere? Balanced on top of his head, maybe?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

How Is This For TMI?

I've had an upset stomach for the past two days. I haven't been able to eat all that much and after I do I don't feel so well. I assumed it was just a little stomach bug going around.

Yesterday, I started having some really bad gas pains on top of the already upset stomach. Well, I thought they were gas pains. Turns out, not so much.

I think I may need a pair of these:

Oh yes I did! Twice.

Just thought you'd want to know.

And... your welcome.

I tell you, I have no shame. Just thought you might want a post about something other than my pregnancy or my handsome boys. But you might think twice about what you wish for from now on.

Monday, March 23, 2009

In Just Four Years...

You've completely captured my heart.
Your sweet and affectionate smile,
Your snuggles and your laugh.
The way you light up the room,
And what a tender heart you have.
I am smitten with you, Tommy.
And I'm so proud of my 4 year old.
Happy Birthday, Goldenbear!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Making It Real

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

When my mom stopped over with bakery on Tuesday morning she asked me if it had sunk in yet. Was I finally starting to believe that I was going to have a little girl? Of course, I said "no". I still felt funny referring to the baby as "she" and I hadn't even thought of picking out a cute little pink outfit yet.
I guess my mom thought she would help make it more real for me, because as I arrived home later that morning with my minivan full of groceries I saw a precious little pink outfit hanging on my door. A big smile spread across my face, and I knew right away who the gift was from.
It was the perfect little outfit. Nothing too frilly and fancy. Nothing with scratchy lace, or frilly, uncomfortable, froo-froo ruffles. Nothing too pink, or too loud. Just a simple little cream colored shirt in soft cotton, tastefully decorated with a few flowers, and matching pink shorts. Just looking at it made my stomach do flip flops.
I hung it on the inside of our front door for everyone in the house to see, and even the boys oohed and aahed over the sweet outfit. Joey kept saying, "Isn't this just the cutest thing ever? Mama, isn't our baby gonna look just SO, SO CUTE?" And Tommy added over and over, "This is for our little baby GIRL. She is gonna look so pretty! Our little GIRL!" Even Ben had to point and say, "Baby!" every time he walked by.
And I don't know if the outfit has worked it's magic or not. I don't know if it is sinking in yet. It may just take me a while. But it sure is nice to have a little bit of pink in this house.
We all think so.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

It Was A Lucky Day

We had the luck of the Irish on our side on St. Patrick's Day even though I am only slightly Irish. It was definitely not like the St. Patrick's Days of the past, drinking green beer with friends at a local Irish bar, but it was definitely one of the nicest St. Patty's Days I can remember.

The morning started out perfectly with my mom bringing over bakery (yeah, baby!) and spending some time with Ben and I while Joey and Tommy were in school. When she left Ben and I hustled to start the laundry and get to the store before picking up Tommy from school. As I went to drop off the groceries at home I pulled up to the house and noticed a little pink outfit hanging on my door. Our first little lady outfit had arrived by a mysterious donor. I drooled over it for only a few minutes and then rushed out the door to get Joey from school.

We had record breaking weather with temperatures close to 70. The boys and I spent every single moment we could outside, playing on the playground at school for an hour, zooming truck on the grass, swinging sticks in the puddles, and running around like lunatics. We quickly ate lunch and the boys took short little naps and were back outside in no time. I sat on the porch with my lemonade and my camera while the boys played in little boy heaven. It was perfect.

(Though Ben managed to get yet another owwie in the exact spot the last owwie just healed, it did not slow him down at all. Still, now we will have to wait another couple weeks to take his two year pictures.)

And. AND! When the hubby came home he told me how he had settled a massive case at work that he had been working on for the past three years. Oh happy day!

We finished up the day with peanuts and fruit snacks on the floor, barbecue for dinner, and snuggling on the couch afterwards.
(Yes, my shirt says "Green Beer Taste Tester" but I promise I didn't test any this year.) ;)
Yes. It was a lucky day.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Drum Roll, Please...

So, I know you've all been waiting patiently (some more patiently than others-hehe) to find out our big news. I won't drag it out any longer than I already have (phone calls had to be made before I could blab it all over the internet).

Our little baby is a...

wait for it...

it's coming...


Can you freaking believe it? I can't. I'm still in shock. When referring to the baby I still trip over saying "she". I don't know if I think she is going to spontaneously sprout a penis in the next few months but I keep thinking, "what if baby really is a boy and then he'll feel bad that I kept calling him a girl". I know. I'm lame. I'm just so used to boys. This is going to be like being a first time mom all over again.

The ultrasound went swimmingly. The ultrasound tech was the best we've ever had. I told her how I'm usually nervous, thinking of all the things that could be wrong, so she explained every step of what she was doing. It was so fun. She was very enthusiastic and told us over and over again that baby looks perfect. She was so patient trying to get every perfect shot she could while baby moved and flipped and bounced all over. She couldn't believe the positions this baby contorted herself into. Baby was hiding behind my placenta, and upside down, and then would flip in a second. It was crazy. The tech was also very patient with me when I made her confirm, confirm, confirm, confirm, confirm, and confirm again that baby is a girl. Anytime she would get anywhere near the baby's bottom she'd say, "See? Still no penis." And then at one point the umbilical cord was in between baby's legs and she said, "Nope. That's the umbilical cord." before I could even ask. It was very funny. She was fabulous. And she didn't even get huffy when the doc came in and I asked him to confirm as well.

Doc took one look and said, "That's a vagina! Trust me, I see them all day long. I don't know much, but this I know..." I was laughing so hard I was afraid I would pee my pants.

Still, it hasn't really sunk in.

I am just so relieved baby is doing so well. Doc said that everything is looking fabulous. Baby is right on schedule. The only thing he mentioned is that my placenta is attached a little low, but not too close to my cervix, so it won't be a problem. However, he said I will feel tons of movement because of where the placenta is and how baby is situated. That explains why I felt the kicking so early.

Our families are all very excited for us. We are so very excited. And the boys are excited to have a little sister to love on. I'm sure as it all sinks in my excitement will just grow more and more.

So, for your viewing pleasure, here is our little lady.
(profile view- see her little hand by her face?)

(This is one of my favorite shots because it looks like she is doing the plow pose in yoga. Her head is on the bottom, her torso is on the right hand side, and her legs are going straight across her face. HAHA! Silly little girl.)
As it turns out approximately 78% of you guessed correctly. That is craziness! Great job! Thank you for taking such interest and making this even more fun for me.

Monday, March 16, 2009

In A Little While

In a little while I will see you for the very first time.
I'll see you kick and move,
Roll and bounce.
I'll see how straight your spine is,
How strong your heart beats.
I'll see your ten fingers
and your ten toes.
And though I am already incredibly bonded to you
seeing you will make that bond so much stronger.

Your mama is a worrier.
I worry about you, my baby.
I pray that you are strong and healthy,
happy, safe, and cozy.
And I pray that God makes me
the perfect mama for you.
To be strong, capable, and accepting
No matter who you are
Or what your strengths and weaknesses are.
I already love you with all my heart.

And I can't wait to see you,
In a little while.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Wrapped In Love

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

When I was pregnant with Joey my mother-in-law gave me a precious gift. It was a beautiful, blue baby blanket that she had knit for Todd when he was a baby. It was the only thing she had ever knit which made it all the more special to me. She was hoping that my son, her grandson, could be swaddled in that same blanket and brought home from the hospital in it just as his daddy had been. I was moved to tears.

Of course, I did use that blanket to wrap Joey in and bring him home from the hospital. I loved the idea of him coming home in his daddy's baby blanket. There is something so romantic about it. And there is something so loving about a mother taking the time to make her baby a blanket that I was inspired to try it myself.

I enrolled in the first class I could find. A crocheting class. I learned how to crochet in a few weeks and set out making Joey his own baby blanket. I found the softest, fluffiest yarn of the purest sky blue. And though I did not attempt any fancy patterns, I was pleased with the outcome of his blanket.

When Tommy and Ben came along, they too were wrapped in their daddy's blanket and brought home from the hospital in it. And waiting for them at home were their own blankets that I had made. Each made with the same soft, fluffy yarn of slightly varying shades of blue.

The boys love their blankets. Occasionally, they'll snuggle up on the couch with their respective blankets. Sometimes they lie in the sunny spots in the sunroom with them.
And sometimes they just like to be goofy with them.
But most of the time the blankets stay draped over their beds ready for use when the mood strikes.

Now I have another little one on the way. Soon I will start yet another blanket. But no matter which craft store I have searched I have only seen three shades of blue in my favorite soft, fluffy yarn. If this baby is a boy I will be searching high and low for one more shade of blue so that he too can have his own baby blanket made my his mum.

Or maybe. Maybe I won't be reaching for blue yarn at all. I really don't know. I guess I just can't imagine that scenario. We'll find out soon enough. And whether baby is a boy or girl, he/she will be wrapped in daddy's blanket on the way home from the hospital. And waiting at home will be the softest, fluffiest baby blanket.


The ultrasound is Monday. Don't forget to place your bets on the sidebar! What do you think? Blue or pink yarn?

Thursday, March 12, 2009


I've been traumatized by many a scary movie in my day. It comes from watching far too many nasty movies at far too young an age. My mother admits today that she doesn't know what on earth she could have been thinking to allow her young (I'm talking 6 or 7) year old daughter watch Children of the Corn. I vividly remember being so scared watching it alone on the couch when my mother went to answer the phone in the kitchen that I couldn't move. By the time she got back to me I was covered in sweat. And so was the couch. Or, maybe it was pee. No. Probably sweat.

You'd think that would have stopped me from watching the freaking movies, but it didn't. Of course I went on to watch the crazy Nightmare on Elm Street and Friday the 13th movies with my girlfriends at sleepovers. Loving and hating them at the same time. And I watched all the classics like The Shining, Mommy Dearest (okay- that's not a horror movie. but it always scared me), The Exorcist (I still can't watch that movie in one sitting), Psycho, and The Omen with my mom. Every once in a while (especially when I'm alone at night) a scene from one of these horror movies will pop into my head out of nowhere and really freak me out.

But I've found that there is one movie in particular that is haunting me lately, as it has with every pregnancy.

Rosemary's Baby.

The movie itself doesn't really scare me, but there is one scene that seems to have traumatized me. The scene where Rosemary is preparing dinner in the kitchen and cutting up raw meat. Without thinking she takes the raw meat and begins devouring it. She is enjoying it. Loving it. And then she catches a glimpse of herself in a mirror (or maybe it is a toaster...hmm) and she is horrified. She immediately throws up in the sink.

For some reason, every time I am making dinner and handling raw meat (only during pregnancy) that scene pops in my head and I'm paranoid that I might just start ramming raw meat down my throat. I can't get the thought out of my head and so the whole time I'm preparing the meat I'm gagging. It is disgusting.

Now why would that even pop in my head? I mean, it is not like I think I am pregnant with satan's child or anything. Sure, I've called Todd a devil before, but REALLY. I was only kidding.

Whatever the reason I wish it would stop, because I can barely handle the raw meat without gagging now the way it is. I don't need this nasty image in my head.

So tell me. Am I crazy? Shall I seek professional help? Or are you haunted by a particular horror scene too?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

WW- Smooshed

Rub-a-dub dub,
There's no room in this tub!
But with only one,
It's just not as much fun.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

This Is Not What I Want To See In March

Though this weekend was completely wretched because of the sickies floating around our family, I took solace in watching the last of the snow melt off of our lawn on Saturday.

And then when I woke up on Sunday morning at the butt crack of dawn to take care of a crying Ben, and to water down the flames in my throat, I looked out the kitchen window and saw this:
Another few inches of fresh snow dumped into our backyard. Nice. Talk about adding insult to injury.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Round Two

This past weekend has been a rough one. Every single member of our family is sick. It started with Joey's runny nose, and horrible deep cough on Tuesday. On Wednesday I had to take him to the doctor for an ear infection. By Friday Tommy and Ben were coughing and achy. On Saturday my throat felt like it was on fire, and Todd was an achy mess. Sunday we were all down for the count. I honestly can't remember the last time I had a cold like this. It feels like there are a thousand barbs sticking in my throat and I can't swallow. I can't get a deep breath because my lungs seem to be filled with phlemy goo that makes me cough every time I try. When I do cough I fully expect to see blood coming up. It makes my ears ring.

I guess I shouldn't have even thought it. I didn't say it, but I guess thinking it was bad enough. When January rolled around and none of us had so much of a sniffle I smugly thought we might even make it through the rest of winter healthy and intact. Then February hit us with each of the boys getting colds and subsequent ear infections. And now this.

Last night before bed Tommy was really complaining that his ear hurt. Ben was up four times in the night though he could not tell me until this morning that his ear hurt too. I guess this means we are going back to the doctor AGAIN, and now Todd is vowing to move our family to Hawaii. At this point it doesn't sound like a bad idea.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Boy or Girl?

Soon we will find out
Is baby a boy or girl?
Care to make a guess?

Our ultrasound is now a little over a week away. Of course, I've already mentioned that we will be attempting to find out the gender of our little munchkin, and I thought I'd give you all the option to make a guess on what you think baby is.

Before you go ahead and cast your vote in the poll on my sidebar you should read through this whole post so that you can make an "informed" decision.

Here is what I know:

- I've been told that I have approximately a 17% chance of having a girl. I don't know where that number came from, but it sounds about right.

- My grandma had five boys and Todd's grandma had four boys.

- I ALREADY have 3 boys, in case you forgot.

- This pregnancy has been different from my other pregnancies in that I have been much more nauseous. Super nauseous, actually. But I have also noticed that my pregnancies have gotten a bit rougher with each one.

- Baby's heartbeat at the last two appointments was 157 and 151.

- All my boys' heartbeats were in the 140 and 150 range.

- My sister is psychic and is right 99% of the time when guessing people's baby's gender (she was an OB nurse in the navy and was always right with her patients too). When I was pregnant with Joey she told me right away that he was a boy and that she saw me having 3 boys. She SWEARS this baby is a girl.

- Todd has a $100 bet going with her that she is wrong.

- Joey has been praying for a baby sister for the past year and he told me that God told him "yes".

- My biggest craving right now is fruit. Strawberries in particular.

- The Chinese Gender Predictor says that baby is a girl.

- Said predictor was right for Joey and Tommy but was wrong with Ben.

- I am carrying and showing the same way I did with all the boys.

- I have zero maternal instincts when it comes to predicting my baby's gender. Zero. I think I've thought each of my boys were going to be girls, so definitely don't ask me. I have no clue.

- I felt baby moving super early. Probably around 11 or 12 weeks. With my boys it was always around 19 or 20 weeks.

- When I did the wedding ring on a string held over my belly it didn't move at all. It was still. Same thing with the pencil over the arm. I think those tests are a load of crap. If your hand is really still the ring and pencil won't move at all. So there!

- I've much more irritable this pregnancy and my skin and hair don't look as nice either.

Okay. I think that covers it. If I missed anything ask me in the comments and I'll answer it right away. Now scoot on over and place your bets!

** Joey's teacher always tells her students, "You get what you get and you don't mind a bit" (but she says "git" so it rhymes with "bit") when she is handing out snacks and drinks. It has become a popular phrase around here, as it miraculously seems to curtail some whining.
On a recent trip to the doctor Joey was telling me that he changed his mind and wants the baby to be a boy instead of a girl now. I told him that decision is all up to God. Joey immediately said to me, "Well, I guess you get what you get and you don't mind a bit!" Haha!
Exactly, Joe!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

What Is It About Three?

This morning I had to take Ben to the doctor for his two year checkup. I had purposefully scheduled the appointment when both Joey and Tommy would be in school so that I could devote my full attention to Ben and the doctor. Of course, you know what they say about the best laid plans? Yeah, they fell. Joey has been sick the last few days and yesterday we found out he has another ear infection. And last night Tommy got sick too. So, today both boys were staying home from school, and all three of my boys were dragged to the doctor's office with me. Such is life with three kids. Expect the unexpected.

I'm sure you've all heard it before. I hear it all the time. I don't know why people think it is true, but it seems to be the general consensus. --If you can handle three children, you can handle any amount.

Recently I was talking with my mom and that statement came up again. I wondered out loud why so many people say that. My mom (who has six children) seemed to think that the first three children are the hardest and then after that you just learn to loosen up a bit. I don't know. To me, it just makes sense that four children would be more difficult than three.

I do understand that three children is a magically difficult number of children. It has definitely been the biggest adjustment for the hubby and I. Going from a married couple to a married couple with a child was really not a difficult adjustment for us. I know that this might make some of you want to punch me in the head, but it actually seemed like a piece of cake. I remember commenting to my mom a number of times that I didn't understand why people thought that having a baby was so difficult. Of course, I should mention that I had the easiest baby on earth, and that everything always fell into place with Joey. He was a pleasant, happy baby. He slept through the night by 10 weeks. Nursed like a champ and then weaned himself at 12 months. Moved to a big boy bed and potty trained with no problems. And even though he had that weird fussy time from 7-10 o'clock every night until he was 3 months old, everything still managed to go smoothly.

I've also heard that going from 1 child to 2 children is incredibly difficult. I found that to be relatively easy as well, even though Tommy was not an easy baby. For the first 8-9 month of his life he NEVER slept. I mean, up every hour at night, would not nap during the day, kind of no sleeping. And because of that he cried a lot. But even so, Joey and Tommy immediately took to each other and life seemed to go along without much trouble. Other than the sleep deprivation, of course.

Now adding the third baby? Well. That's a different story. And while talking with my mom I think I figured out why. It isn't because the hubby and I are suddenly outnumbered. That never really seemed to be a problem. It isn't because Ben is the type of child that is always into something. That doesn't help, but it isn't the problem either. The problem is that it is always something.

With three kids, there is ALWAYS something going on, and it is difficult to keep up. You think you are constantly busy with one or two kids, and you really are, but add the third in there and it seems to blow up. Someone is always mad, sad, grouchy. Someone always needs to go to the bathroom. Someone is always hungry. Someone is always sick or tired. Someone always wants your undivided attention. Someone is always waking up in the middle of the night. Someone always has something to complain about. Someone always needs you to get a toy that is out of reach. Someone is always talking, yelling, screaming, crying, fighting, shouting, making firetruck noises. Someone is always falling down, breaking something, getting an ouchie, stealing a toy, throwing up. IT. IS. ALWAYS. SOMETHING.

So I guess that is why I am confused with the notion that four kids won't be any more difficult than three. More kids. More difficult. Right? Or is it that after the first three you just kind of throw your hands up in the air and say, "It is what it is"? Do you finally give up trying to control everything? Do you just let them be a little bit more? Do you give in to the noise, the chaos, the craziness? Do you really learn to let go?

I just don't know. But I'm looking forward to finding out. And when I do, I'll let you know. ;)

* For those of you that are soon adding a third child (I know there are a bunch of you out there recently), I hope I didn't scare you. I obviously LOVE having three so much that I want even more. It is craziness, but the good FAR outweighs the madness. :)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

From 0-Bitch in 2.0

I am a bad mama.

It's one thing to hide chocolate and snacks on your kids and then nosh on it the minute they are asleep. We've all done it. No big deal, right? After all, it is junk food and it isn't good for them anyway. Plus, you don't want them to constantly ask you for junk food. But, it is another thing entirely to hide healthy, lovely, fruit on your children, and then lie when they come across it in the back of the fridge. "Oh, you don't want those strawberries honey, they are all mushy." What kind of mother does that?

Apparently, I do.

I have had one major craving the last few weeks. Strawberries. I'm becoming obsessed. I want strawberries all the time. Unfortunately, my boys love fruit more than most junk food and if they know it is in the house they ask for it nonstop. Normally, I think that is a great thing. Until their desire is for my one craving.

Last night Todd found the strawberries (which is weird because he usually doesn't move ANYTHING around in the fridge-did you catch the bitchy tone?) and ate a few in front of the boys. Naturally, the boys saw and wanted some too. I tried to persuade them to have a lovely banana, or a juicy, sweet apple instead, but they were adamant. And I was pissed. I felt like I was being personally attacked. Everyone was eating MY strawberries. The strawberries they all knew I CRAVED! I swear I almost cried.

When I finally handed the strawberries over I pouted like a toddler and said, "This family is conspiring against me!" And when Todd rolled his eyes I nearly punched him in the face.

I'm a pregnant woman on the edge, people! Don't push me! It doesn't take much to set me off these days, so if you are wise you will back away from my strawberries.

Just thought I should warn you.

Words To Live By

Be grateful for each new day.
A new day that you have never lived before.
Twenty-four new, fresh, unexplored hours to use usefully and profitably.
We can squander, neglect, or use them.
Life will be richer or poorer by the way we use today.
Finish every day and be done with it.
You have done what you could;
some blunders and absurdities crept in;
forget them as soon as you can.
Tomorrow is a new day.
You shall begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be
encumbered with your old nonsense.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson