Monday, June 29, 2009

Growing Up

I love this photo. Mr. P was showing me his ribbon from t-ball. What a change this last year has been for my little boy. He has grown up so much and changed so much. The shy boy is disappearing before my eyes. He is chatting it up with everyone now. At the grocery store one day he starts chatting with a woman beside us in the aisle. He announces to her that "we have 5 kids in our family". LOL...what a hoot. He then proceeded to tell her all the names and ages of his siblings....and the cat too.

My boy is ready for kindergarten...and excited about it too. He is learning by leaps and bounds. It's amazing how fast his brain is clicking along...learning to read and doing math computations. His memory too...WOW!

For his birthday he is getting a new big kid training wheels. I'll post pics of that later. I can't believe he is ready for a bigger bike. It seems like yesterday we bought him his first bike. Really, it's been two years ago. This was back in the days of him yelling "Mama Do It!" and refusing to learn how to do something himself. I bribed him...I told him if he learned to wipe his hiney (I know...TMI...and he's going to someday kill me for telling the world) that I'd buy him a bike. I gave him instructions...the "how-to", a bag of wipes and told him "keep going until it's clean!". It worked like a dream....and he got a new bike:)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mr. P's Party

Mr. P is turning 6! Wow! Where has the time gone?

Today he had his kiddy party and invited the boys from his pre-school class. That was a GREAT idea since there were only 4 boys in his class:) They had a wonderful time.

The boys played with guns and ran all around the yard.

Then Grandma Sue came by and made paper gliders for each kids. Wow, did they think that was fun.

There were paper gliders flying all around...doing loop-de-loops.

Then it was present time...we did eat pizza too but don't have any photos of that. We made little mini pizzas on english muffins with pepperoni and cheese.
Next was cupcake decorating time. They each got a cupcake, cone and assortment of candy to make a clown face. Turned out super cute!

Of course then they ate them...yum.

Here's the Darth Vader pinata...stuffed with candy.

I covered the eye holes in the Darth mask for the kids to wear...and they whacked it with a light saber.

Picking up the candy.

Ending the day eating the treats. I've never fed kids soooo much sugar! Yummy...and what a fun day. Happy Birthday to my big 6 year old. I love you!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Exciting News

Last month was my month to host book club and I chose There Is No Me Without You by Melissa Fay Greene. I was thrilled that everyone loved it and was as moved by it as I was. The best thing of all is that one of the gals is now adopting a sibling group of 3 kids from Ethiopia. All because she and her husband read this wonderful book! Amazing:) I'll keep you posted on her adoption progress.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Food on the Brain

Here's part of the dilemma...I really don't want my kids to eat this kind of thing...too often...but I also don't want them to be denied ALL sugar and junk either. I try to find a good balance. I just make sure it's a treat and the normal meals are healthy. They were thrilled that I finally bought them a treat at the park. They always ask...and finally they got was a Spider Man ice-cream. Rivers of blue and red were running down their hands...blech! At least I wasn't tempted to eat some myself:)

Food...that's what I've been thinking about today....well, most days...but especially today. I'm wrestling with many issues concerning feeding my family.

I want the food to be healthy...I try to buy as much organic as I can.... but it's expensive. I want to fix my family low-fat, whole grain, vitamin rich foods.

I want the food to be yummy...who doesn't...but I'm a self admitted food snob:)

I want the food to be cheap! Ha-Ha...I know...I'm dreaming but we do have to watch what we spend on groceries. As it is we spend A TON! I'm trying to widdle it on down.

And...most recently I want things that are easy to prepare...that everyone loves and that serves the brood of us.

Tonight I made Dirty Potatoes. YUM. I got the recipe from Erin's blog. She's got a big beautiful family...and knows how to feed them! Everyone loved it. And...we have leftovers for tomorrow too. We had green salad with it.

I'm looking for more recipes or dinner me your top favorites in the comments section. Also, we eat vegan 2 nights a week so vegan recipes are great too:)

I can't wait to move...grow a garden and have chickens and maybe a cow...some of my problems will be solved...yet more work too:)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A Year

One year ago Cam was getting ready to leave for Ethiopia to bring home our sweet baby girl.

One year ago I was just days away from giving birth to Baby George.
One amazing crazy busy unforgettable year.

It's been challenging and tiring and busy and hard work. I worry that everyone isn't getting what they need from me...that I'm stretched too thin. I worry that I won't remember all the special things. I worry.'s been amazing...and exhilarating...and fun...and life altering. It's been a very special year. I take lots of photos...even if I don't have the time to put them all into the albums right now...I will have the memories to look back on.

These sweet babes pucker up and smooch each other...usually this is right after Sis has whacked Baby George or taken his toy;) At least she is learning the art of apology! There are moments of jealousy...usually when I'm holding one and the other baby wants up. That has been the hardest thing for me...well, and when they both cry at the same time...or shall I say scream! My hope and my prayer is that they continue to grow into the best of friends. Sis likes to feed her baby brother. She holds food up to his lips and says, "bite, bite". They are precious.
These two babies came to us the same week from opposite ends of the earth. That is an amazing thing. We are truly blessed by God's love and His plan for our family. I can't imagine my life without them.

Well, now I'm all teared up thinking about my babes and how fast this year has gone.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Sleep...Sweet Sleep

I thought this would be an appropriate photo to announce that.....drum roll please....bumdedumdedummmmmm.....I slept 7 CONSECUTIVE hours last night....AND the night before! I haven't had more than 4 hours of sleep at a shot in well over a year. BG usually gets up anwhere from 2-5 times a night! This is a huge improvement...he's perfect!!!
Baby George has slept through the night twice now. It's amazing! Of course I woke up and freaked that he had slept so long. Against Cam's warnings I tiptoed into he and Lydia's room to check on him. He was sound asleep and breathing just fine;) Then after going back to bed I couldn't sleep. It was either that I was truly rested...or it was the fact that BG hadn't nursed all night long and I was in PAIN! I laid there waiting to hear him so I could run in snatch him up and feed him.
It's so great. Now, should I go with past experience and know that he might not do this every night...or as one of his siblings...NEVER again. Or, should I just have faith and a little denial and believe that he now sleeps through the night?

Friday, June 19, 2009


From left: 1979 My sister Chelsea, cousins Staci, Kari, Ashley (sisters), myself, and our friend Gina. We are sitting on our grandparents back patio celebrating Ashley's birthday.

My Dad had his BRCA2 genetic test (the breast cancer gene) and he is NOT a carrier of the gene! This is great news! This means my sisters and I could not inherit the gene and do not need to be tested.

A few weeks ago I wrote about my cousins and their breast cancer. My cousin Staci is doing well with her chemo and has such a great outlook. Both Staci and Kari have inherited the gene. Kari had breast cancer two years ago and Staci has it now. Ashley just had her BRCA2 test and will soon get the results. They also all have daughters who will be getting tested in the future. Keep these girls in your prayers.

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Grandma Barb got a new baby...a baby chihuahua named Zoe. She was orphaned when her mommy was killed by a coyote. Sad! She is super tiny and is being bottle fed. The kids were over the moon to meet her and play with her...well hold her anyway. She is a bit smaller than a beanie baby. I want her!!! As soon as the kids get a bit older...and we move we are getting a dog...or two dogs. One big dog to play outside and one little dog to play inside:)

Zoe yawning while having her bottle.

Busy Guy loved feeding her.

Sis loved her! She held her under her arm just like she does with her teddy bear. She wanted to sit and hold her and kiss her all day. She kept laying lip locks on Zoe's nose. She even licked her a bit too...that's Sis doing the licking!

Tuba loved kissing Zoe too...actually we all did...well, except Cam. I think he wouldn't hold her and kiss her because he'd want to take her home;)
Check out the gorgeous view from my Dad and Barb's deck! We had a nice visit and enjoyed the warm weather.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Baby George

Baby George is learning to drive! He had so much fun standing in the front of our van and pulling up to stand....and driving. Beep Beep!
Next month BG is turning the BIG ONE!!!! I can't believe time flies....and we are having fun. BG is giving kisses to everyone. Nice big slobbery ones...we don't mind...we love it. He is such a happy guy. His smile lights up the room...and his Mama's heart. He waves to the kids and scoots on his tushy to chase after them. He is crawling in the traditional way too...a bit more each day. I better get that scoot on video before it disappears. He is pulling up and starting to try and stand up on his own in the middle of the floor...tri-pod style:)
He is HUGE...a big Viking. He outweighs Sis, he's a solid...but gentle giant. He loves all food!!!! He screams, screeches, hollers and convulses if he sees you have food. No joke! Just ask the Grandparents...they've all seen AND heard's a hoot. We were at the boys' pre-school festival and BG started screeching and hollering. We couldn't figure out what was wrong...and then we realized he had spotted the Hot Dog Vendor! LOL! Lucky for him Sis loves to feed him. She holds out her hand with food and barks, "bite, bite" to him. He is obedient and eats it.
He is the baby and we all love and adore him.

Friday, June 12, 2009


Okay...back to the blog...and getting the 7 updates done. It's busy around we went out of town to visit Grandma and Grandpa.

Sis is getting big...and! She runs full speed from sun up to sun down. She falls and gets up and keeps on going. A friend who teaches gymnastics commented that she is very sure footed. She climbs to the top of our play structure. She goes up the slide an then stands at the top yelling to the boys in the yard. She swings in the big kid swing never lets go and LOVES to go high and fast. She also climbs up onto the barstools and gets up on the counter...dumping drinks and wrecking things...well, her nickname is Godzilla!

Sis's language is really taking off. Most of her sentences have to do with food..."I want that, I want a bite, I want some". She said, "Hi Mom" when I went to get her out of her crib. She says all the kid's names and is adding about 5 words a day and putting them into sentences. She is super bright!

She is very attached to her Mama. She loves Papa too but wants me all the time. She wraps her little arms around my neck and hangs on for dear life. She gets jealous when I'm holding baby brother but has no problem climbing up and making room for herself too. She calls her bottle the "Mama Baba". We have debated taking her off the bottle but she is NOT ready for such a drastic move. She loves it and gets such great comfort from it. It's also about the only time you can get her to slow down, sit on your lap and snuggle. She puckers up her little lips to kiss everyone...including the cat multiple times a day;)
She is such a fun, busy, loving little girl. I couldn't imagine our life without her!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Busy Guy

Busy still Busy! He loves pre-school (goes one day a week) and each day asks if it's his day. He's looking forward to next year when he gets to go two days a week.

Busy Guy is interested in all things mechanical, loves tools and LOVES his big brother Mr. P. They spend the day playing together...superheroes!

Each morning he greets his baby brother and sister with "Good Morning Sunshine". So sweet and happy! He is a good helper and often gets one of the babies a toy when they are fussing. He also wants to help me cook. His favorite is to mix up pancakes or cookies.

Busy Guy has been doing a good job of staying in his bed all night....once he's asleep. This kid required less sleep than the others. He's the last to fall asleep and the first one up each day. I have to limit his nap or bedtime is a big problem....but no nap isn't so good either. He gets a sticker in the morning if he stayed in bed....he loves it.

Busy Guy is dying to play team sports. He does get to start swim lessons this month and he's really excited about it. It's so fun to have a kid that is such a "go-getter". He is NOT shy and loves to try new things. I think he's going to be a natural athlete.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Mr. P

Mr. P is turning 6 at the end of the month. Each morning he lets me know how many more days until it's the BIG day. He want a BOY only party this year. Sis and I don't count...whew!

We have been seeing HUGE changes in our little boy. For the first time in his life I heard him say, "I want to do it myself". No joke...this is the boy who famously shouted, "NO, Mama do it" any time Cam tried to help him or heaven forbid...we told him to do it himself. I told him that when you turn 6 then you: dish up your own food, pour your own cereal, put your dishes in the dishwasher, etc. It started with one thing but worked so well I just keep going;)

Mr. P is loved by all the little girls at school. He blushes when his teacher tells me this. Apparently all the girls chase him around and fawn over him. LOL! One sweet girl gave him a present for his birthday. I'll be posting a pic of it....precious!

Mr. P just finished up his t-ball season. He LOVED it!!!! Each game he was thrilled to go, thrilled to play, couldn't wait for the next game to come. He wants baseball stuff for his birthday and loves playing catch with Cam after dinner each night. They both gave me the squinty eye when I suggested Cam throw the ball underhand to Mr. P! was making me nervous how hard Cam was throwing the ball....I know, MOMS!

Most of all he is such a great helper for his brothers and sister. He loves to play with them and always hollers to alert me when Tuba is having a seizure or when Sis is into something. We were riding in the car and it was all quiet when I heard Mr. P say to his brother, "I love you". Melted my heart!

Sunday, June 7, 2009


It's Tuba's update day. Here he is in our little kiddie pool. He LOVES it! It has a tiny slide for toddlers (which he is a toddler in his brain) and there is this huge 88 lb. 4' 10" kid going down the slide. He also likes to stand on it and then jump into the pool. Most of the water is gone by the time he is done playing:)

Seizures: Horrible, terrible! Still no relief. We've been down to the hospital many times and are going again this week. Still trying to determine WHY the VNS isn't working. And...because his Depakote has been raised he now has TERRIBLE eczema all over his body!!! Another thing to talk to the Dr. about. If the Depakote isn't stopping the seizures...then lets stop increasing it! He has just started another (that makes 3) seizure med's not working either.

Tuba is doing well at school and is actually saying lots of new words all the time. One of his new words is "booby". Yes...isn't that a great word. Well, around here with a baby nursing all the time and little boys running around topless (they call it being in their boobies) it's just a word that gets used A LOT. I was at an appointment with Tuba in a very crowded waiting area when Baby George started to fuss. Tuba YELLED "Booby" and lifted up his shirt to show his...well...booby! Lovely! Funny but embarrassing at the time.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Cam's Day

Here's the latest on Cam-a-ram-a-lam-a-ding-dong.
Well, you already know what he's doing on Monday! Other than that he has been working away at Grad school...3 out of 8 quarters done! Woot! He is working 2 days a week...12 hour shifts. And...he's been training for some triathlons this summer. The crazy man loves exercise! I know it...wacko;) He got a new bike and is in LOVE with it. He also took some swim lessons to fine tune his swimming.
He's also been working on our "to-do list" of items around the house. We want to have it in tip top shape when we sell next Spring.
That all...except he's an awesome daddy and huge help to me around the house!

Friday, June 5, 2009

So much to catch up on...

I have so much to say...and so little time to blog! I thought since there is 7 of us and 7 days in the week that I'd try to do an update on each of us in the next week. I may fall off a few days but here goes my best try;)

I'll start with me...since it is me writing.

It's been crazy busy with the kids. I think these past couple months have been busier and much harder than the first few months when the babies came home! At the end of the day I have enough energy to wash my face, brush my teeth and pull the covers up. The weather has been really nice...which does give me tons of energy! I love playing outside with the kids...or at least watching them play while I cook or clean in the kitchen.

I have A LOT on my mind. A couple of things are weighing big on me.

1. Tuba's seizures are still terrible! More on that later when it's Tuba's day for an update.

2. I have two cousins (my Dad's brother's daughters) who at the age of 40 (I'm 38) were diagnosed with breast cancer. One of them was two years ago the other was just last month. These girls have done EVERYTHING right...never smoked, don't drink, have never been overweight, never taken the pill, between them they have 10 kids and breastfed them all...etc. They both just had the BRCA2 test and yes, they both have the gene. Now, my Dad is going in to have the test and IF he is a carrier (50% chance he inherited it) then I and my two sisters will have the test. We also will have a 50% chance of inheriting the gene if our Dad is a carrier. If you are a carrier then as a woman you have an 85% increased chance of getting breast cancer...pretty much means you WILL get it! Scary! Keep my cousins and our family in your prayers and I'll let you know how the testing goes.

3. Cam is having a vasectomy on Monday! Humph! I have many mixed feelings about this. It's just so final. How can we (he) be sure we are done? It's closing a chapter on our lives that I've really enjoyed. What does God want us to do? Those are the things on the con list. In case you're wondering...Cam doesn't have anything on the con list! He's sure...he's done!

I do have things on the pro list too. I'm almost 40. I was too sick the last pregnancy. The gestational diabetes could be worse the next time. I don't think I would have the energy/strength to care for the 5 at home while pregnant with a new one. We want to adopt again in a year or so. My husband really wants this and would be stress free in the birth control deptartment.

My feelings flip flop. Humph! least with all this on my mind...I did get to the salon this week. New hair cut AND a pedicure! Fabulous!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Dog Days of Summer

The benefit of being the older brother...choosing which towel you want to wear...and convincing the little brother that he wants the "other" one.


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