Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year's Eve... apparently

True Story- Last night (as in MONDAY), mere moments after saying to a snarky teenager,
"it's Sunday, why would dad be at the office on Sunday night? Of course he's at the firehouse!" 
a good friend asked me what we had planned for tonight. The question would have sounded more normal had it been a Friday or Saturday, but a Monday? I replied, 
"tomorrow night? Um...nothing? Should we be doing something?" She answers back, 
"well, it is New Year's Eve silly!" 
Nope, had no idea. I had lost track of the days, and apparently the entire year. 
And, the best part about all of this? As I sat down to write this, even after I made sure the trash got out this morning, and even after my momentary humiliation of being super cool parent who didn't even know the day last night.... I STILL had to check my phone to make sure that it was in fact Tuesday. 
I have loved the kids being out of school and having the break from homework, lunces, and schedules. But clearly my kids school schedules are my only ties me to reality! 

p.s.

things heard by me while writing this- 
"Eew, who didn't flush the toilet?!", 
"baby broke this thing."
"Claire called me a bad word!",
 "but MOM he won't let me help him find his underwears!", 
"my brothers and sisters were the worst idea ever!",
 "I can't do this all by myself, it'll take forever, my feet are hurting!",
"baby got the wipes again!",
"someone put dirty underwear in the cup in the bathroom!",
"I wanna watch Big Big Friend!",
 "GROSS! He put a booger on my shirt!",
 "I want more opimeal!",
 "um, the baby is on the table!"

I think my minds escape from reality is clearly justifiable. 






Friday, December 20, 2013

Naughtiness

Kate has yet to master the skill of self control and has been a wee bit too friendly with the Christmas tree. 
I catch her ripping ornaments off of the poor unsuspecting tree daily, sometimes nicely, sometimes not so nicely. 
This encounter was one of her more violent ones. 
Another gingerbread man down, torn from his cozy spot on our sparkly tree. A casualty of a curious baby at Christmastime. 

Danny is outraged- and since Danny has got to be in Santa's top ten on the naughty list himself, for him to be upset, it must really be bad. 
Measures must be taken to ensure the safety of the last few remaining gingerbread men. 

She may be guilty of assaulting the Christmas tree at least a dozen times a day- BUT- she is the only one of my children who will accept a time out with with maturity and dignity. 
Looks like there's hope for her yet!



Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Being a Parent at Christmas

One of my favorite things about this time of the year is all the cuteness the kids bring home from school. 
They are so proud to show you what they've created. And it's amazing how happy you can make someone by just taping a snowman to the cabinet for display.


Claire- 4yrs.
preschool 

Sean- 5yrs.
kindergarten


Nate- 6yrs. 
1st grade
(there was some slight structural damage but nothing a little string couldn't handle!



Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Why we buy furniture from craigslist




I think Santa needs to leave baby Kate some dental floss in her stocking. 



Monday, December 16, 2013

Why french fries make me mad

While at preschool, my kids were all taught how to order from McDonald's.
Now, Sean's kindergarten class is using fast food to teach the alphabet. Is it cute? Yes, but also sort of sad. 
I can think of a million other words that start with the letter "F" that would work just as well. This is just another way to enhance the unfortunate presence of this yucky way of eating that most of us are guilty of. 
I cook most of the kids meals. I am not some food nazi, but I do try and keep things as homemade as I have time for. From time to time they do have nuggets or pizza, but those things are not a regularity in our menu. Schools preach to the heavens about healthy eating and exercise, but when they limit recess and use fast food as a teaching tool I feel they undermine their own efforts. 
Of course they're not telling the kids that they need to go home and demand fast food for dinner. This could absolutely just be a project to teach the "F" sound. But, it is also just another way that our unhealthy lifestyle is taught to our children as the normal way of living. We use things that are known and familiar to teach them. French fries are normal to most kids, but that's a fact that's unfortunate given our nations obesity and overall health situation, and not something I feel should be utilized in schools as a learning tool. 
Some other "F" words that might have worked well...
Friends
Family
Flag
Flower
Foot
Fork
Face
Finger
Five


Sunday, December 15, 2013

Mom, can we go outside? Can we, can we, can we???

If you live in a place that gets any sort of snow, you know exactly what I mean. 
Waking up in the morning to the fresh, sparkly snow that has been peacefully falling all night long. 
The kids come down, peer out the windows with that magical look on their faces... and then...
BAM!!!!!!
The begging begins (at around 7:30am) to go outside and play in the snow. I want to scream at the top of my lungs "Yes!!! Yes you can go outside to yell and run and jump and yes I am happy about it because you won't be doing it inside the house!"
But, playing outside in the snow also means mom and dad (or in this case, just mom since it's a firehouse day) gets to round up 4 kids worth of gear. Then mom gets to stuff 4 kids into said gear after pleading with 4 kids who "don't have to go!" to pleeeease use the potty because coming back in to use the potty after gear stuffing is super duper off limits!!!!! 
(deep breath)
So, round up the gear I did. 
I got not 4 pairs of gloves, but 8 instead, because the gloves that keep hands dry don't make good snowballs and we certainly can't have that. Also, side note, there was most definitely evidence that a mouse has been roosting in Dannys boot again. I shudder. 
35 minutes from beginning to end to get the kids ready, and all while a smelly baby who needed a diaper change waddled around excitedly thinking she was breaking out too. 
They went charging outside with perfect kid-in-winter joy. 
We took our annual picture. The first time this photo was taken Nate was barely taller than the counter. Time is flying. 

Then they each went down the slide because snow pants make you shoot down at warp speed. 

Swinging in the snow was a huge hit...I knew there was a reason we forgot to take those down once winter arrived. 


Once I was spotted with my camera they figured out how fun it was to make faces at me through the door. 













Baby Kate was not happy to be left behind. But her brothers and sister all took turns throwing snowballs at her through the door and she was content just to laugh at them. 

All in all, the fun lasted a mere 20 minutes. Nate was the first to come back in because his good boots were forgotten in school and his feet hurt in the old ones. Followed by Sean who can't breath without his brother by his side. Danny and Claire were next because their hands were too cold to make snowballs and they had boogie noses. 

Getting them all ready to go outside in the snow is a TON of work, and creates a huge mess when they come in...and all for a measly 20 minutes!
But, those smiles tell me that it's all worth it. And that the work it makes for me is the most meaningful work I'll do all day if it makes them happy. 








Wednesday, December 11, 2013

This is what our Christmas looks like

I love when it snows around 5 as it's getting dark and everything looks almost blue outside. 
Our semi decorated tree (bottom 1/4 is of course almost bare since a certain someone can't be trusted just yet.) 



 Our friend "Grady" who came to visit from the North Pole. Grady is supposed to be providing incentive for better behavior amongst the troops here but if you ask me, he could be putting forth a touch more effort. 
I just love sparkle... 

And would slather my whole house in glitter paint if it was socially acceptable. 






Taking down all the white twinkle lights is the saddest thing for me once the holidays are over. 



These last 2 have nothing to do with Christmas at all but I just love them. The weather was nasty outside and dinner was cooking away all warm and steamy. 
Hot food on a freezing day is just so cozy...

Especially when there's a sneaking baby to share it with. 


I just love Christmastime! 

More pretties here.



Conversations with Sean and Nate

Sean- "Hey mom, what's the perfect day to go to the beach?"
Me- "I don't know Sean"
Sean- "it's SUNDAY!!! I am so joking with you mom!"

Nate- "Can you change from one list to the other?"
Me- "What list Nate?"
Nate- "Like, once you're on the naughty list, can you go to the nice list?"
Me- "I'm not sure. That's up to Santa buddy."
Nate- "Yeah, I'm pretty sure I'm on the naughty list. But, like, sometimes I'm nice and like I'm really gonna need some presents on Christmas so I think I might try being nice a few more times. I think I saw that elf move his eyes. I'm starting now mom." 



Monday, December 2, 2013

A New Team For The Boys

The boys start wrestling practice tomorrow and Sean is a little excited. 

"I've been waiting my whole life for this mom. I am gonna pound on Danny when I get home!"
(as he does big muscle arms and growls)
"Um, not you're not Sean. Danny's little and wrestling does not mean you get to pound on anyone."
Yikes. 
Nate is a little more unsure about it than Sean. 
"So, are we allowed to wrestle other people there or is it just for brothers?"
"Nope, you'll wrestle all kinds of people there."
"Will they teach us how to punch harder?"
"Nate, there is no punching in wrestling. Dad told you that already."
"But, then why would you do it?"
Double yikes. 
When they boys played soccer for the first time a few years ago, Sean had some difficulty making the (very) important distinction between football and soccer. Within mere minutes he had plowed through every member of his team. I sort of looked around to see if parents were aware of the fact that he was indeed mine, then closed my eyes as he went for the back of the coaches knees, taking her down as well. 
Wish us luck with this new end-ever, or rather, wish others luck. 
Positive side, their father has to take them as I will be at Irish dancing with the girls, something that thankfully is much less contact oriented! 




Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

What we're thankful for-

1. Nathan- "Family, our home, food, toys, friends?"
(with a look that meant "was that the right answer mom?")

2. Sean- "Um, family....uh....food. You're the best cooker mom. And, ummm.... my toys! "

3. Claire- "Fairies!"
(agreed)

4. Daniel- "Me wanna go outside. Let me!"

5. Kathleen- "ahlaaaaaa"







Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Daily Life



This little girl makes some pretty serious messes when she's eating. 


 But recently she's taken an interest in cleaning them up, which isn't so bad. 

I'm thinking she's trying to free up some of my time so I can play more afternoon peek-a-boo. 

Cute 1st grade handwriting. 

Someone thinking a smile will get her off the hook after being caught gnawing on the woodwork. 

And Sean, after cleaning the house for me because "I just want you to sit and have a rest for being the best mom!"