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Monday, December 22, 2008

santa claus is coming to town

we're home just in time to get ready for christmas! emma had her christmas program at school the night before we went to the hospital. while she was up on stage singing, madeline was clapping and cheering, "wooo hooo, yeah em!". the girls are so excited for chrismas. emma has a list a mile long and madeline wants a sippy cup and fruit snacks...typical!

claire bear

We're home!! What a scary couple of days that was. As we were leaving the doctor's office on Friday to head to the ER, our pediatrican told us that if Claire didn't have RSV (she had already tested negative twice that morning) than there really was nothing else that it could be other than meningitis because her softspot was bulging and there was a lot of pressure on her brain. Praise God that after a lot of prayer, all of her testing came back negative. It turns out that the pressure was a result of an upper respiratory infection and not a viral infection in her brain. Since it was just pressure and not an infection her brain will not be damaged in any way. We had a long few days in the hospital....they are really backed up right now and we spent the first night in a holding area with 5 other beds and the second night in a treatment room that they converted into a "room" for us. No TV and no bathroom!!! Thank you, Norma for bringing me a DVD player to keep me occupied. On Friday, Claire was really zoned out and not acting herself at all. That night I didn't sleep at all because she was really struggling to breathe and I was terrified to take my eyes off of her. By the next morning, we had our happy little girl back and she was playful and smiley in her crib all day. The nurses all wanted to eat her up! We had to stay in the hospital for the full 48 hours to completely rule out meningitis, but as soon as that timeframe was up, we were able to leave. We got home last night and she's doing great. She threw up last night, but the nurse said that that's to be expected for the next few days. I am so thankful for everyone's prayers and that my baby is home and healthy in time for Christmas.

Friday, December 19, 2008

As I write this, Claire is in the ER waiting to be admitted into the hospital. The doctor is pretty sure that she has meningitis and possibly pneumonia. All beds are full, so we are waiting it out in the ER until a bed opens up for her. She needs several tests, including a spinal tap and then we are looking at least the next 48 hours in the hospital depending on how it all goes. At one point today, the doctor said to me, "They don't all survive this". Those have been the hardest words for me to hear and they keep repeating in my head. I am so thankful that I have a God who is in control of all circumstances and who is bigger than all of my needs. I don't know when I'll be back at the computer, but I'll keep you all posted.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

crayola factory

Just a random pic of the girls at the Crayola Factory in PA. They had so much fun!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

i'm old

Well, I'm oficially old. When did this happen?! I had a great birthday...Ryan knows what a big deal my birthday is to me and he always goes out of his way to spoil me. The day started with me sleeping in...Ry got up with the girls at the crack of dawn (maybe the best part of my day!) and then he made me breakfast in bed. There was so much food, I couldn't even come close to finishing it. When I finally got out of bed, I opened my presents from Ryan and the girls and then we went to church. Afterwards, we went to brunch with Ryan's parents and then had an entire day of shopping. We went EVERYWHERE. It was a nonstop shopping trip from Fort Myers to Naples hitting all of my favorite stores...I loved every second of it. We took the girls to the Naples mall to see Santa and they actually wanted to sit on his lap!! This was our third attempt to see him this year and so far they have been too scared, so I was thrilled that they finally went through with it. Madeline kept saying that all she was gonna ask Santa to bring her is candy and fruit snacks. There's a surprise...she eats more than anyone I've ever met!! All in all, it was a great day spent with my family...I wouldn't want it any other way :) Someone asked me today how old I was and it felt so wierd to say that I am 30. When did I grow up? Was it almost 10 years ago when I got married or when I had 3 kids or Sunday when I left my twenties behind?! I can honestly say that I am blessed beyond measure and that my life is everything that I would've hoped it would be at this point in my life. I have a husband that I couldn't imagine living without and three precious little girls that I am fortunate enough to be able to stay home with everyday (somedays I need to remind myself that this is a blessing!). Most importantly, I've got a God that loves me in spite of myself. If you had asked me when I was 15 where I would've seen myself at 30, this would be it...though I might've been driving a Range Rover and not a mini van :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

so excited!!!!

we are heading up to nj on wednesday the 3rd. sara, jill and beth (i would love to see your mom at some point too), let me know what day is good for you all to get together. i can't tell you how much i am looking forward to seeing you all and meeting your babies!!! jen, i wish that you were around a i could meet precious little lila. hopefully next time. i hope that everyone has a GREAT thanksgiving. i'm planning on pigging out and i can't wait :) let me know when and where we should all meet!!!

because our lives aren't crazy enough.....

we decided to add a puppy to the mix. i told you i can't be trusted to leave the house. a trip to the grocery store for some antibiotics for emma turned into a puppy purchasing fiasco. did i mention that we are heading out of town tomorrow for pretty much the next two weeks?! traveling with a new puppy, an infant, a toddler and a preschooler...priceless. ryan and emma both fell in love with the little guy and there was no way out of this after that. he's a tiny little chiahuaha (sp?) and shi tzu mix and is the perfect size for emma to dress up and play with :) she's said several times that this is the happiest day of her life. i think this one goes down in history as one of mommies most stressful ones. so far he remains nameless. any suggestions?

Monday, November 24, 2008

longest post ever, but worth the read

I am officially the world's worst mother. Last night, I had one of my worst fears come true....it's so humiliating, but so unreal that I just have to share:) The last few nights I have been going out alone after the kids go to bed to run errands, do some christmas shopping, etc.. Ryan has been great about putting the kids to bed and giving me some time to get these things accomplished. It's amazing how much more I can get done when I am out without the kids. (This is me laying the groundwork to defend the stupidity that is to come.) So, yesterday we had a new sofa delivered. We have been in the process of redecorating our living room and finally broke down and bought a new sofa. The new sofa arrives, Ryan leaves to go watch the Eagles game, and I sit for three hours staring at the new sofa, feeling like I am gonna throw up because I am in shock and I hate it. (My mom had a good point that I have cried after every haircut my entire life and I live in a constant state of buyer's remorse and that the sofa will grow on me. Ryan has even commented in the past that he's surprised that I haven't traded him in for a newer model...I am known for second guessing all of my decisions, this new couch being the latest, I guess.) That aside, Ryan finally gets home and I tell him that I can't stand the new couch and we need to immediately go to Homegoods and World Market to buy some throw pillows and blankets to try to make it look better. His reply is that rather than the entire family going, why doesn't he stay home with the kids and I just go. I think to myself, that's perfect. I will just leave Claire in her crib sleeping and get home in time to feed her after her nap. Then, at the last minute I decide to take Claire with me because I'm afraid I will get sidetracked while I'm shopping and it will be easier to have her with me than to worry about rushing home to feed her. So, we head off to World Market and the whole way there I am still thinking about the new sofa and still wanting to barf. I get to the store and go inside and examine every pillow and blanket they have in the store trying to decide what my new color theme is gonna be and how I am ever going to like my living room again. After about 2o minutes (maybe longer?!), Ryan calls to check in and I start to ask him if Claire has woken up yet when it hits me that SHE ISN'T IN HER CRIB SLEEPING, SHE'S OUT IN THE CAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You should have seen me throw everything to the ground and sprint to the parking lot like a mad woman. Ryan was on the phone the whole time and could not believe what was happening. Thankfully, Claire was sitting in her carseat as happy as can be and the police where not there to arrest me. (I'm joking, but I'm serious at the same time.) Ever since I have had kids, the thought of this exact thing happening has always freaked me out...I can't believe that it actually did. I wanted to die. I thank God for protecting her and for the fact that I realized it when I did and that this happened on a cool fall day and not in the middle of the summer. Worst mother in the world. Oh my gosh, I will never let myself live this one down.......

But wait, it continues. I went to Target this morning to get some groceries and had a few extra minutes before I needed to be at Pilates, so I thought I would run into Homegoods. I did a quick five minute run through the store and found nothing to make my couch look less hideous in my house, so I proceeded to leave. Claire was in her carseat in the front of the cart and Madeline was hanging out in the back of the cart. Well, the cart proceeded to get stuck on the metal threshhold of the doorway and FLIP OVER with my children inside. No joke. They both came crashing to the ground before I could steady it. Madeline was ok, but very scared. Claire, on the otherhand, has her first black eye. That's right. My five month old baby has a black eye. You could see her eye start to swell right away, but her face was so red from her crying so much that it was hard at first to evaluate if anything else was hurt. I was terrified. I had three employees and two random men helping me and Ryan came right away (I got a hold of him just before my cell phone died). I think I shook for an hour. To see this all happen right before my eyes was the scariest thing. The girls could have gotten seriously hurt...the black eye is nothing compared to how bad it could have been. Ugh.

I'm not leaving my house the rest of the week.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

They are actually in their room PLAYING with their toys...what a rare moment!

Claire chillin at the park...I can't believe she's 5 months old already :(

marathons and ice cream?

What does it say about me that while on a seven mile run, the ONLY thing I can think about is what flavor ice cream I want from Coldstone? Either I am the world's unhealthiest health nut or I have a major work out addiction in order to make up for my major food addiction....hmmm.

who's er daddy?

Tuesday night we had an awesome family night out with the Henley's!! We took the girls to dinner and then to the movies to see Madagascar 2 (otherwise known as "MOVE IT" in our house). The eight of us were the only ones in the theater until a group of octogenarians decided they felt like watching an animated movie for the evening (which we all thought was kind of random). All was fine until Madeline, who has no concept of an "inside voice" kept yelling "Who's er daddy?" about every character that came on the screen. The 80 year olds were getting so mad at her, one of them actually yelled "shut up" at one point...no joke. After the movie, one of them turned and gave us a 10 second stare down before she left the theater. Needless to say, we were totally amused:) Other than the bitter impatience of the old folks, we had such a fun night. I'm so glad that Norma, Jeremy and Layla decided to join us. It's such a blessing to have friends that feel like family :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

beautiful day

The weather here was so beautiful today. I packed a picnic lunch and picked Emma up from school then we met some friends at the park for the afternoon. I love days like today :)

Thought I'd share a few of my favorite funny quotes of the day:

After chasing the train at Lakes Park on foot as far as they could, Emma comes running back, completely out of breath and says, "Wow, I just did bootcamp!" Like mother, like daughter :)

Madeline's prayer at bedtime tonight: "Dear God, thank you for help us, for playground for swing" (repeated four times) Amen.

Emma was praying for our new "adopted" Brazilian sister, Brenda. During her prayer she kept stuttering and getting stuck on the word "sister". Emma's like, I pray for our "sis, sis, sis" from the top bunk and Madeline was on the bottom bunk yelling "ter, ter, ter" trying to help Emma along. It's bad when your 2 year old sister is trying to finish your thoughts for you. I guess we can't delay the speech therapy much longer :)

No quotes from Claire today..just a bunch of smiles and some goos and gaas. She loved lying on her blanket in the park all day and rolling around in the grass. The attention from all of Emma's friends wasn't bad, either!

halloween pics

Just a few Halloween pics. Emma was Little Red Riding Hood (her costume was two sizes too small, but she insisted on it anyway), Madeline was a "wobspur" aka lobster, and Claire was unofficially a butterfly. The night was so hectic, we never even put her costume on her. Poor third child. Next year I'll make it up to her with an amazing costume!! This year was the first time we didn't stay home for Halloween. We went to Tracey and Jason's house to trick or treat and then had dinner there afterwards. Lots of Halloween fun!

Wow, I can't believe that it's been almost a month since my last post...I'm such a slacker. Life has been very busy here. The weekend before last we had a family reunion in Jupiter. Ryan was in Palm Springs on a business trip, so my mom came to help with the kids for a few days and then we headed across the state to the big reunion. We had a blast!! It was so much fun to see cousins that I haven't seen in years and the kids had fun meeting so many new family members. It was hectic for Kristin and I, cause we are pretty much the only ones with little kids and babies right now, so our style was kinda cramped for the weekend :) We managed to have a great time even though our hands were FULL! And next year at this time when my sister and I get together, we'll have 6 girls between us. We are quite a spectacle whenever we go out with the whole crew.

Right after I got home from that trip, Ryan surprised me with a last minute trip to Medford for a few days. It was so great to be back. Whenever we are up there I instantly feel like I am home again. I had a great couple of days soaking in the cold weather and the peace and quiet (the big girls stayed home). I spent one whole morning lying on the couch in my bathrobe drinking cofee and reading a book...it was heaven!! It was great to spend time with Becky. I love how we can not see each other for a year and then instantly start where we left off. We got some great shopping in. I think we spent hours in Francesca's...my new favorite store :) I never realized how much better the food is up North...no wonder I was so fat when I lived there, I couldn't stop eating the whole time!!! It was dangerous. I think by the time I left, my clothes barely fit on me. We can't wait to take the girls up for a visit in December...two days just wasn't enough. I'm so thankful that Ryan's parents have a place up there now and hope that means we can get back there more often. Once a year just isn't enough.

Now we're home again and it's taken me two full days of laundry and housework to get this place in some kind of order. The last few weeks have been such a whirlwind of going from one suitcase to the next and I am looking forward to a normal, quiet week at home. Going to the grocery store, making dinner and cleaning actually are sounding good to me right now. I guess with three little kids around, stability is what keeps me sane.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

fire safety day

best friends

the schoolgirls

me and my trouble maker :)

Yesterday was fire safety day at Emma's school, so I decided to take all of the girls and make a morning out of it. Madeline was so excited that she got to go to school for the day...she started talking about it and trying to get herself dressed at 6:30 am. She wants to be like her big sister so much:) The girls had lots of fun watching a puppet show and presentation and getting a tour of the big fire truck! Madeline got to sit with the class and shared Emma's mat with her on the floor. Emma was so excited to have her little sister there and she held her arm around Madeline protectively the whole time..it was so sweet. I am so thankful that I am able to stay home with my kids and not miss out on the little things like this. Madeline was much easier to deal with yesterday, by the way. Only a few minor tantrums that were not long lasting. From there, we spent the afternoon at Chick Fil A with some of the girl's friends and we stayed until we wore out our welcome. When the lady starts cleaning your table while your still sitting at it, you know it's time to get out of there. We have a busy weekend coming up with lots of Halloween activities....I can't wait to get the girls dressed up in their costumes!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

survival mode

Lately, I have been so busy that I feel like my head is spinning. When I sat down to think about what is taking up all of my time, it came to me.........dealing with Madeline and her fifty thousand temper tantrums a day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The past few weeks with her have been pretty rough. She hasn't been feeling well which has no doubt made it worse, but she is just so high maintenance right now. Can anyone say terrible two's?! Everything is a battle. Foods she's always loved she now hates. She walks around the house all day crying that she is hungry and EVERYTHING you try to give her to eat she refuses to touch (or depending on her mood, throws across the room). Bedtime and naptime are and endless battle of her asking for a drink and then refusing it, followed by her asking for her blanky and then refusing it and then crying two minutes later because she doesn't have a drink or a blanky. Do you see where this is going? Everything is pretty much like this all day long. Today at the gym, she begged me to take her potty. So, we go to the bathroom and she wants to do everything but sit on the potty....play with the lockers, look in the showers, wash her hands, etc. So, I take her back to the playroom and the first thing she does is start screaming that she needs to go potty. Hello? I just had you in the bathroom and you refused to go near the toilet. So rather than give in to her, I tell her no and explain that we just tried that and the result is her on the floor kicking and screaming for the next ten minutes. Every now and then we see a little glimpse of her fun, silly personality but there is a lot of a battle of the wills going on in between. Ryan was home with her for a few hours on Sunday and was so burnt out by the time I got home. At least I have him to feel my pain :) I know that I have to stay consistent with her and that this phase will pass, but in the meantime it is so draining. I remember when Emma was two and she would sit in the car and chant "I hate you, I hate you" over and over again in this really mean little voice...thank you God that she outgrew that one!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

jammies, fruit snacks and pumpkins oh my!

I'm back! Our internet was down all last week and we've been so busy lately, so I've been a major blog slacker. Today I was able to catch up on reading everyone's blogs...I've missed hearing about what's going on in everyone's lives!! The girls are growing up fast and changing so much...here's what's new with them:

Claire will be four months old on Thursday. She really is the sweetest baby that I've ever seen. She's all smiles and giggles and loves her big sisters so much. She tries "talking" to us all of the time and Emma loves to try and decipher what she thinks Claire is saying. Last week, she started sucking her thumb which is way too cute. She's rolling over a little bit from her back to her belly. She LOVES to be on her tummy...I let her sleep on it at night because she's so cozy like that (and she sleeps for 12 hours, so I'm afraid to rock the boat!).

Madeline is in full swing of her terrible two's. As sweet and easy going as she is, she's learning to have an opinion about things and knows when she wants her way. Lately, she wants to eat fruit snacks for every meal and she only wants to wear "jammies". She throws a fit whenever I try to dress her, screaming "I wear jammiessssssssss!". So much for the loads of money I have spent at baby Gap over the years :) She wants to be just like Emma and imitates everything she does. She LOVES going to dance class...her favorite part is when they do the "pokey pokey"! I think she knows every kid's song ever created and sings constantly all day long. She is doing a good job going on the potty, but mostly only when she remembers that it will get her an M&M.

Emma, like her mommy is obsessed with holidays!! For a month now, she has been decorating our house and obsessing over Halloween. Every day she arranges the Halloween decorations in new and different ways and begs to go to the store to buy more. She's even started watching a few Martha Stewart episodes on pumpkin carving...no lie! She still can't settle on a Halloween costume..some days she wants to be Little Red Riding Hood with Daddy as the Big Bad Wolf and other days she only wants to be anything that involves the color pink. I think that she's hitting a growth spurt, because after a lifelong battle of trying to shove food down her throat she now eats 2 or 3 peanut butter sandwiches for lunch!! She's really getting a lot more grown up every day and I can tell a big difference in her emotional needs...it's like right now she's trying to figure out the world around her and she really needs to know that she is safe and secure. It's crazy to watch a person go from a little baby to a little girl and I know it's only going to get harder and harder the older she gets. When I look at her and think about the responsibility of raising her I feel the weight of the world on my shoulders. I'm going to need a lot of grace to raise three girls...especially when they are all teenagers :)

5k fever!

For years, I have been wanting to start running competitvely again and this weekend I finally did it!!! On Saturday, a few of us from the gym ran in a 5k at Lakes Park to support breast cancer. It was awesome!!! For my first time out I did pretty well, coming in first place in our group and 19th overall. It was a perfect morning, the weather was beautiful and it was fun to run with so many friends. The best part of the race was when I got near the finish line and Ryan and the girls were in the crowd cheering me on :) Emma keeps saying that when she gets big enough, she wants to start running too. I can't wait for that day!! Hopefully this is just the start of many more races to come...my goal is to make it to the Naples half marathon in January. Afterwards, Ryan and Emma stayed at the park for a while to do some fishing. They didn't catch anything, but they had fun trying!

Monday, September 29, 2008

busy weekend

We have been so busy lately, I am ready for life to slow down a little bit. For the sixth weekend in a row, we went on yet another road trip. Ryan and Jason went to the Bucs game yesterday, so we left early in the morning to head to Tampa for the day. As usual, Kristin and I had to entertain all five kids while the husbands were off having a good time. Where is the fairness in this?! Oneday soon we will get our payback :) It was an overcast day, so we mostly hung out in the hotel room except for a little visit to The Cheesecake Factory for some dessert..yum! The girls were both a wreck when it was time to leave...Emma didn't want to leave the hotel and Madeline didn't want to leave her cousins :(

Saturday, September 27, 2008

back to reality

We're home! We started off our trip last Saturday by going to the east coast for Jane's birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. The girls had so much fun with their cousins! Emma won enough tickets playing games to get a gumball machine, so that totally made her night! From there, Ryan, Claire and I headed to Fort Lauderdale to stay by the airport and the girls headed up to Orlando with my parents.

Atlantis was awesome! The hotel was amazing..it was the perfect trip. It was great to get away with Ryan without the kids, we definatley needed the break! It was hard, though, to see so many things that we knew they would love...we'll just have to go back with them one day! Claire could not have been any better for us. She literally spent the entire week in her stroller...she was such a trooper. She even went to bed every night before dinner and she would just sleep in her stroller and d awe enjoyed our meals with no distractions. The only hitch is that she was totally off of her schedule all week. She went from sleeping 12 hours a night to waking up every few hours. It took a few days when we got home to readjust, but thankfully she is finally back to her normal routine :)

The girls had a great time with Grammy and Pop Pop! It was good to know that they were in good hands while we were gone and that they were having a little vacation of their own. The highlight of their week was going to Sea World and Downtown Disney. When we picked them up and they were telling us about everything they did while we were gone and showing us everything they made, I was exhausted just hearing about it. It's funny how after just a few days away I forgot how tiring parenting is! My mom helped Emma make a photo album to remember their visit and it was so special....definatley something that we'll have forever. I'm sure my mom was wiped out by the end of the week, but part of her was sad to see the kids leave. I think the house seemed pretty empty the next day :(

Once I get some pictures downloaded, I'll post a few!

Friday, September 19, 2008

girl's night!

Last night Emma and I went on a date to get our nails done. While I got my pedicure, Emma got a manicure (gold sparkle polish with pink flowers!). She had SO MUCH fun and it was special to do a "big girl" date with just her. I have a feeling that she's gonna want to make a habit of this :)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

counting down

The girls went out last night with Grandma and Grandpa..they had a blast! Ryan's parents have been out of town and the girls hadn't seen them in two months, so it was a special treat to spend the night with them. Emma and Madeline had so much fun going to their house and playing and doing art projects, then they went out to dinner where I'm sure Grandpa filled them up on plenty of chocolate :)

Claire is getting so big. She's sleeping through the night which is amazing! She goes to bed when her sisters go to bed and wakes up when they wake up...I couldn't ask for an easier baby :) She loves nothing more than to smile at everyone around her. She can't keep her pacifier in her mouth because she's always smiling and usually while I am feeding her she stops eating every few seconds to smile up at me. She is such a sweetheart!

We go to Atlantis in three days! I cannot wait. The next couple of days are going to be busy with birthday parties, running errands, boot camp, doctor's appointments, etc. and then we head over to West Palm Beach on Saturday to unload the kids on my parents for a week :) Hopefully they'll all make it to the end of the week in one piece (my parents included!).

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

my ballerina

Madeline now wakes up every morning telling me she wants to go to dance class. She can't grasp the concept that we only go once a week :)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


We have been so busy lately...it seems like I have not had a second to sit down and blog. On Labor Day weekend, we took the kids on a spur of the moment trip to Disney. We had the best time!! It was Madeline's first time to the Magic Kingdom and her reaction was so worth the trip! We got up there Saturday afternoon and stayed at the park until it closed at 11:00...the kids did great despite the late night. Madeline's face when she saw Mickey and Minnie for the first time was priceless. Her jaw dropped to the ground. She loved seeing them from a distance, but whenever we asked if she wanted to take a picture with one of the characters, she would say "I too scary". The highlight of the trip for Emma was definatley the fireworks. She stared at the sky with huge eyes and twirled around with her arms out singing about how amazing it was. We didn't get to our hotel until 1am and the kids STILL woke up at 6:45, so needless to say the were wiped out the next day. We spent Sunday with my parents and Aunt Laura in Celebration (my favorite place ever) and it was great to see them. The girls were devestated when we had to come home :(

This past weekend I took the girls to West Palm Beach to visit my sister and the guys had a golf weekend at our house. We had so much fun...it's always so much work when we are together with all five (almost six!) kids, but it is so worth it. Gina had us over to her AMAZING house on Sunday for lunch..I always love spending time with her...she's the best! Afterwards, we went to Caitlyn's birthday party at Super Star Kids. It was a hollywood theme and the girls had fun dressing up, getting their hair done, walking the red carpet and having a dance party. Emma was a little reluctant to dance, but Madeline was rocking out with all of the big kids...go figure!

Today my dad had surgery to remove cancer from his colon. We just found out about the cancer yesterday and the doctors seem hopeful that they were able to remove all of it. Praise God! I was so worried about him being in surgery today, but he did great and he is recovering. It seems like cancer is running rampant in my family..I absolutely hate it. Hopefully we are all in the clear for a LONG time.

Madeline started dance classes last week. It is the cutest thing ever. She goes on Tuesday mornings from 9-12 for a Mom's morning out program. She has the best time dancing, making a craft, playing dress up and reading stories and I get an entire morning to myself with only Claire at home. I got more housework done around the house today in those three hours than in the last three months combined!! I need to take some pics of Maddy in her tutu to post..she is too cute. Her favorite part of dance is when they do the "pokey pokey" :)

I started a new round of bootcamp last night. I became too addicted to live without it. We had one week off and my workouts seemed so boring without the whole crew. I think that is Ed's whole plan....to get us addicted to his work outs so he can keep getting our money!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

ghetto superstar

Since I am Claire's milk supply, she is coming with us on our trip to the Bahamas, making her the littlest person ever to need a passport. We've have been spending WAY too much time lately in the downtown Fort Myers ghetto trying to get this accomplished. Today was our third try and once again we struck out. First I need to get a copy of her birth certificate so that I can get her passport. Sounds easy enough, right? We went today and spent two hours in the waiting room at the vital statistics office trying to get a copy. I left the house at the crack of dawn so that I could get there early and avoid the wait. We got right in and filled out the forms, paid and were all ready to go until.........the printer brokedown!!! We waited for two hours with all of the riff raff (my favorite was the three year old girl wearing NOTHING but a diaper and drinking coke out of a bottle accompanied by her hair net wearing father and playboy bunny diaper bag carrying mother) that frequent government offices until I finally decided to try again tomorrow, which will be our fourth attempt at getting this done. Luckily, Emma was in school and Madeline is the comedian in the family who kept everyone in the waiting room entertained. She was actually disappointed when it was time to leave. She could've sat there all day putting on a show for her admirers. I, on the other hand, thought "I could sit here for another hour and MAYBE they'll get the printer fixed or I could go to Old Navy for an hour before Emma gets out of school." You guessed it....Old Navy won!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

simple pleasures

Ryan got home a little early from work today. I LOVE when that happens! He was home in time to catch the tail end of naptime, so we got to float together in the pool in peace and quiet for a little while!!! When the girls woke up we went on a family walk to get ice cream at 7-11. Emma rode her bike and Ry and I took turns pulling the two little ones in the wagon. We always laugh when Emma is on her bike, because she looks so nerdy with her enormous Strawberry Shortcake helmet on and her skinny legs wobbling around as she pedals. It's so fun to watch her ride because she takes on this whole "adventerous/the world is mine to explore" attitude when she is on her bike. She rides around and comments on the world around her like she is taking it all in. At one point a lady drove by us and Emma looks at her with her nose turned up and says to us, "Hmmm that lady looks kinda like interesting". Or, "See that bird? It is so still on the water and it looks like a statue, but it's actually a real bird." She also loves to search out anything pink that she can find out in the big world. Today we saw a few pink lounge chairs out by somebody's pool. Too cool. Doing these simple things with my whole family are what I love the most :)

the new and improved me

Lately I have been in a very contemplative state of mind. I think that it has a lot to do with the fact that I will be turning 30 in a few months and I don't really know how that happened! Whatever the reason, I am all in favor of embracing the new, older me and being intentional about my life rather than feeling like life is passing me by. Some of my goals are silly things, like to be in the best shape of my life, to give up my lifelong love of fast food and actually care about what foods I put into my body, to get good at yoga, to get pedicures more often so that I don't gross people out by my nasty feet :) But then there are the things that matter. For example, I have been horrible at friendships all of my life (as most of you reading this probably know). I don't know what it is...I don't know if I was always so close with my mom and my sister that I didn't "need" my friends, or if I am just too selfish or too lazy or too intimidated or what. But one thing is for sure that I always fail at sticking it out for the long run. I want to really start being intentional in my friendships so that they don't fizzle out over time. I am so thankful for all of the old friends that I have been in touch with recently and how great it is that sometimes you can pick up where you left off. I desperately want to raise my daughters to be passionate about their walk with God and I want that for myself as well. I want to study the Bible and apply it to my life. I want my husband to be glad everyday that he chose me to spend his life with and I want to make him proud that I am his wife. I want to show my parents that I am thankful for the way they raised me and the childhood that I was given. I want my in-laws to know how much I love being a part of their family. The list could go on for days...these are just a few things that are on my heart right now as I slowly realize that I am approaching a new decade in my life and before I know it I will be middle aged and I don't want to look back on this time of my life with any regrets. Is that possible?


Madeline now goes by "Boots" in our house. Can you guess why?!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

the park!

After school today, we met Dana and Madeline at Chick-Fil-A for lunch and then I took the girls to the park. It was way too hot and buggy out, so we only stayed for about 10 minutes. They had fun while it lasted. Notice Mad's new boots that she wears EVERYWHERE these days!

first day of school

Her backpack is bigger than she is!

Hip Hop Harry

Playing at Emma's school

Yesterday was Emma's first day of school. I can't believe that she is going to school FIVE days a week now and that next year at this time she will be in Kindergarten. My baby is growing up so fast. I have been so emotional this week just thinking about how big she is getting. It doesn't seem like that long ago that it was just me and my baby spending the day with Vicky and Ellie, going shopping and swimming and hanging out at Starbucks. Now I have two other kids at home, and that "baby" goes off to school without me everyday. When did that happen?! When did my carefree life of being a new mom with my little baby turn into me being the mother of three whose life revolves around a school year calendar? I know it is such a cliche, but time really does go by way too quickly. I feel like I am going to wake up one day and my kids are going to be all grown up.

To top it all off, Emma also started Hip Hop classes yesterday. Goodbye tutus and leotards, hello cami's, leggings and booty shaking. She came home from class yesterday singing High School Musical songs with HUGE attitude....really?

Madeline is happy and content to be home with Claire and I while Emma is at school, but at the same time she walks around talking about wanting to go to school but being too little. On Friday night we went to an open house at Emma's school and while Emma just sat shyly at the table, Madeline was the life of the party running all around and playing with everything in sight. Then yesterday when we took Emma to dance, Madeline wore a pair of dance shoes and stood outside the door saying,"I dance. I hip hop." She can't wait to be able to do all of the things that her big sister does!

Claire is feeling much better this week. We were at the doctor again last week with a double ear infection, but the meds seem to be working well because she is all smiles as usual.

There are only four days of bootcamp left and I am gonna be devastated when it's over. I love working out in general, but the crazy workouts this month have topped them all. Last night we were running through sand with weighted bars over our heads, jumping hurdles over bushes, jumping over walls at construction sights...crazy stuff. Did I mention that it was 93 degrees outside with about 110% humidity? I love it!! I finally am able to wear all of my clothes again...now I'm working on being happy with the way they fit ;)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


How do I get my pictures to appear at the end of my post and not the beginning? I can't figure it out!

rain rain go away

Emma's Masterpiece

Maddy's masterpiece ;)

They took it upon themselves to go to the bathroom to clean up

Today was a long day! We were housebound all day thanks to the tropical storm. School was cancelled and the daycare at the gym was closed along with pretty much every other place in town. So...what do you do all day at home with a preschooler, a toddler and a baby? You paint! One of the girls favorite things to do is paint....Emma loves to be creative and Madeline loves to make a mess. I let them loose with some paints for a while and they had so much fun. I think it took me longer to clean it up than they actually spent making the mess :)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

two months

Today was Claire's two month check up at the doctor. All in all, it was a good visit. She is in the 90th percentile for both height and weight...no big surprise, all of our girls were big babies. She had to get three shots and she only screamed for a minute, but then she fell fast asleep and had a pretty lazy day. She did have a fever tonight...hopefully it will be gone tomorrow. I can't believe she's two months old already :(

Madeline was hilarious in the doctor's office. She made up songs the whole time about everything she saw, all to the tune of "twinkle twinkle". The doctor and I were cracking up at her. She's quite the songwriter :)

emma's first sleepover

...sort of. Emma and her best friend Madeline have been contemplating the idea of a sleepover for a while and they decided to give it a try tonight. They had tons of fun playing with sidewalk chalk, playing games on the computer and swimming in the dark. All was great until bedtime (10:00...super late for 4 year olds ;) ) when Emma got a little freaked out and suddendly had a stomach ache/itchy skin/madeline wasn't being quiet enought/etc. and called me to come pick her up. Luckily I was right down the road at Target so I went right away to pick her up and by the time I had gotten there, she was already asleep. I took her home anyway.....I didn't want to risk a 2am wake-up call! I had a feeling that they weren't quite ready for a sleepover, but they were so sold on the idea that we thought we'd give it a try...I think we'll have to wait a little while longer. I have to admit, I'm glad to have her home in her own bed tonight. As I was driving her home I was remembering sleepovers at Sara's house when we were in middle school, playing light as a feather and crank calling the toll free operators. I can't believe that now we all have daughter of our own who will one day be doing those things themselves. Crazy.

Monday, August 11, 2008

juggling act

Let me start off by saying that Madeline takes a three hour nap every day. That said, since she is sick today, I expect her to sleep AT LEAST that long, if not longer considering her fever, the lack of sleep last night and the fact that she is taking Benadryl today. WRONG! An hour into their naptime, Madeline woke up screaming out for me. I, who was feeding Claire at the time, quickly put her down and ran in to quiet down Madeline so that she wouldn't wake up Emma who was asleep on the top bunk above her. Claire, not happy that I put her down, starts screaming which wakes Madeline up again which then wakes Emma up. Just as Madeline is starting to settle down, Emma comes back into the bedroom to start playing with toys?! So needless to say, we are all now awake hours before we should be and everyone's cranky. Did I mention that at the start of all this, Claire pooped all over my leg so throughout this whole ordeal I have been wearing poop smeared jeans? Oh, the joys of motherhood. Only two hours left until Ryan comes home to relieve me and I head off to bootcamp.....

just another manic monday

can you tell who's sick and who's not?

loving the dragon playground

posing with the mannequins

sleepy baby

So today it's Madeline's turn to be sick. She was up last night with a terrible cough and a fever and she is prone to having respiratory issues, so I knew that a trip to the doctor was inevitable. Once again, the whole gang spent the morning sitting in the doctor's office. Madeline was coughing so hard that she threw up all over me and all over herself in the carseat on the way home. The doc loaded us up with meds though, so hopefully she'll be back to normal in no time.

Emma was devastated on the way home from the doctor that we weren't gonna have enough fun today. She was heartbroken driving past the library, Barnes & Noble and Chick Fil A knowing that we couldn't go anywhere but home to let Maddy get some rest. So far we're having a lazy day at home watching movies in our jammies and eating popcorn. I have to admit, sometimes I love a good sick day when you have an excuse to just be lazy :)

We had a pretty low key weekend. Ryan and I both had the shopping bug on Sunday, so we took the girls to Coconut Point. They had fun playing at the "dragon playground", going to the Disney store and of course going to Starbucks. Claire slept the entire time...she took a six hour nap! And best of all, Ryan and I actually got to do some shopping for ourselves :) Emma was a ham all day, wanting to pose for pictures. Here are a few...

Friday, August 8, 2008

my baby's sick :(

Claire had her first "sick" visit at the doctor today:( She has been up the past two nights doing this scary coughing/ gagging/ choking/puking thing so I took her in this morning to get checked out. It turns out that she has an ear infection and the drainage is causing the coughing which then causes the gagging and choking,etc. My poor baby. She also has thrush in her mouth, so she will be on several medications for the next week. The nurse said that her cough will get worse before it gets better, so it looks like we have a few restless nights ahead of us...fun. It breaks my heart to see her not feeling well...she's way too little to be sick :( She's a trooper, though. Other than her struggle with the coughing fits, she isn't cranky at all. She loves to smile at us and is starting to make those cute little cooing sounds. My favorite part of the day with her is when I am nursing her and she stares up at me the whole time. Every now and then she'll take a break to smile and coo at me and then she'll start eating again. She's so precious!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

you know it's time to potty train when....

*"yucky mommy, i pooped" is part of her daily vocabulary
*she sees a diaper and screams "ew, gross!"
*she takes her diaper off every chance she gets...even if she has to pull down her pants to do it
*she tries to change her own dirty diaper and comes running to you with a wipe full of poop

Sounds great in theory, but then you put her on the potty and she yells, "No like the potty, mommy. No like it!".

AAAHHH! If she wasn't so cute, she might be driving me crazy right now.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


Or should I say pirates?! Emma and Madeline are so close..I love it. My sister and I have always had a really close relationship and I love that my daughters will get to experience that for themselves. The girls have bunkbeds in their room, and when we put them to bed at night we can always hear them giggling and talking with each other. Tonight they were acting like pirates and Madeline would yell "heave" and then Emma would yell "ho" and they just kept repeating it over and over and over again until one of them finally fell asleep :)

white trash

I am oficially white trash. So, tonight was Ryan's last night out of town and my friend Dana's husband Matt is also away. That said, Dana told us about a new restaurant that just opened and was having a grand opening party tonight with free food and wanted to know if I wanted to meet them there for dinner. She said the pizza is great, her daughter loved it, etc. Sounds great, right? Free dinner, hanging out with friends, pizza is pretty kid friendly. So we show up right from bootcamp and I am DRIPPING in sweat...(I would be mortified to go into McDonald's looking like I did) and it turns out that this "pizza" place is in reality this really trendy new bar/restaurant that is having a red carpet grand opening party with these beautiful seven feet tall women in their slinky black dresses working the door. Everyone inside is there all dressed up, sipping their wine, enjoying a night out and here we are, the sweaty crew in gym clothes with FOUR kids (needless to say, the ONLY kids in the place). As I lugged around my baby in her carseat while chasing my two other kids around I couldn't even make eye contact with a single person there because I was so embarrassed by my white trashness. Serves me right for going out in public like a scrub. Never again!

Monday, August 4, 2008


This is an old pic that I just found of Emma's first day of school last year. Was it really less than a year ago that Madeline was bald and couldn't walk and Claire wasn't even in the picture yet? I never realized how quickly time flies until I had kids. Before I know it they will be all grown up. Slow down!

home again...just in time for torture

We're back! We had a great last day in Orlando today. The girls started off the morning by making pancakes with Grammy (loaded with chocolate chips and sprinkles, of course!), playing Pop Pop's drums and playing "freeze dance" (Emma's idea...since when does she know what freeze dance is?!). After all of that excitement, we went to visit Pop Pop at work to say goodbye. My mom and I spent the morning shopping and then after lunch we hit the road. All three girls slept almost the ENTIRE way home, which made a great trip for me! I had a good three hours of peace and quiet to drink my starbucks, listen to music and do a few crunches. Yes, it is possible to do crunches while you drive...leave it to me to figure out how! I know I am a loser, but if you went from a size 1 to a size I dont even know what in 9 short months, you would also do anything it takes to make the weight go away!!! Which leads me to boot camp. Our first night was tonight...it was so hard, I loved every second of it. The meal plan Ed put us on is insane...I can pretty much eat NOTHING for the month of August. I don't care, though....our trip to Atlantis is in 8 weeks and I am determined to be back to normal by then! I have lost about 54 of my 70 pounds so far and I am hoping that this torture will be enough to take the rest off. Yes, I said 70. Yes, I am the fattest pregnant person that ever existed. Yes, that is why I am never having another child.

Daddy comes home in two more days! We all miss him so much and are sad without him here. I am glad that we went away for a few days to make the time pass faster, but now that we are home I am ready for Ryan to be home too. It was great to spend the past few days with my parents. We all had a great time and I know that it meant a lot to them to have us there. It was good to see them in such good spirits :)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

so much fun..so little time

We have had a busy weekend while Ryan's been away! On Saturday, the girls and I drove up to Orlando to see my parents. The girls were great in the car...it was a huge blessing. I couldn't have asked for a better trip with them. We spent Saturday afternoon with my mom at Downtown Disney. The girls had a blast! Emma decided to dress up like Belle for the day, and I want everyone to give me props for allowing it!! She left the house that morning in a cute little Crewcuts outfit, and ended up walking around in public in a bright yellow tulle dress that was about two sizes too small and plastic high heels that were five sizes too big. Mommy's ego took a big hit, but Emma loved every second of it. She even walked around singing songs about what a beautiful princess she was. Madeline was so excited to be there that I think she stopped breathing a few times....she would scream and then hold her breath and shake with excitement. She kept yelling, "Disney, Mommy, Disney"! And this was just Downtown Disney, I can't imagine her excitement when we take her to the Magic Kingdom.

Today we went to Sea World with Grammy and Pop Pop. We only planned on staying for a few hours, but we were having so much fun that we decided to stay all day. My dad was even wanting to stay longer, and that's saying a lot! Madeline loved Shamu and Emma loved to watch the animals do tricks at the Pet's Ahoy show. Claire made it easy on us and slept the entire time we were there. The girls took a long nap in the stroller while we were there, but by the time we left they were still ready for bed. I bet they'll sleep good tonight!
Emma and Madeline both loved spending these past few days with Grammy and Pop Pop and will be sad to go home tomorrow. We have a busy couple of days ahead...my month long Boot Camp starts tomorrow and Emma has school on Tuesday and dance camp on Wednesday, so we need to head home:( Maybe we'll have to come back again with Daddy in a few weeks for another visit.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

daddy's little girls

We took the girls to play mini golf last night. Ryan is leaving today for a business trip in Chicago and he wanted to do something special with the girls for his last night home. The three of them played and Claire and I tagged along to watch. Emma (who's goal in life this past month has been to learn how to play golf like daddy) had a blast playing with a pink ball and Madeline had no concept of what she was doing...she ended up throwing her ball at every hole rather than hitting it with the club. They loved every minute of it! I always love to watch Ryan with the girls. He is so great with them and it is so special to know that they are growing up with a daddy that is so invested in their lives. As for me, I have no idea how I will survive the next 5 days without his help. That said, we are heading up to Orlando to visit my parents for a few days. We haven't been up there in a few months and I know we'll have lots of fun and the girls will love it. It's driving four hours with three kids that's the hard part!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

fun in the sun

We had a fun weekend in the sun! Saturday we went up to the big pool with Dana and Madeline while the daddy's played golf and today we were there again for Jaycee's birthday party. The girls had a great time swimming and playing with their friends. The cookie cake wasn't too bad, either :) Hopefully they'll actually sleep in tomorrow after their busy weekend...I'm crossing my fingers.

Friday, July 25, 2008

what i'm loving right now

I thought I'd write about some things I am loving right now....it will be fun for me to look back on this later and remember what was going on in my world this summer. Here I go, in no particular order:

1. Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood. I admit it, I am addicted! Who ever knew that I would willingly watch a show starring Tori Spelling. Whenever I watch it, I find myself cracking up at how crazy and quirky she is. Sometimes she reminds me a lot of myself.

2. Floating in the pool and reading a book during naptime. I dread the day that Emma gives up her nap for good. Having three girls sleeping at the same time is a huge blessing!

3. My Hooter Hider, Co-Sleeper and Peg Perego Centro Stroller...three things I didn't have the last two times around that are making my life much easier with this one. How did I live without them?!

4. Having rational conversations with Emma...it amazes me everyday how grown up she has become.

5. Listening to Madeline talk in her adorable baby voice and being amazed at all of the new things she is saying.

6. The way Claire looks like a caterpillar when she is swaddled at bedtime...and looking at her big blue eyes when she is actually awake.

7. Boot camp classes that kick my butt and leave me sore for days...and Yoga/Pilates classes to help ease the pain afterwards.

8. All things vegetarian...I am slowly phasing meat out of my diet and I am wanting to eat veggies like crazy.

9. Home shopping parties (Pampered Chef, Jewelry, etc.) that really never offer anything that I want to buy, but are a great excuse to have a night out with the girls to eat, drink and socialize.

10. Quiet summer nights at home with Ryan, enjoying each other's company after the girls have gone to bed. If only the hot tub wasn't broken :( It's about time we called the pool guy to fix it.

11. Getting back in touch with long lost friends through Blogger and MySpace. It's funny how something as huge as the internet can sometimes make the world seem like a much smaller place.

dress like a cow!

Oh, the levels we stoop to! As a mother of preschoolers, Chick-Fil-A has become my hangout. The other day they had a "Dress like a cow, Eat free chicken" day, so Maria and I took the kids for lunch. The kids dressed up, we all ate for free and Maria and I got in a few good hours of girltalk while the kids played and chased a giant cow around the restaurant all day! Nothing like sitting with girlfriends in the AC while the kids can run around unattended and play!