Three Kids and a Dog

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The Things Hailey has Learned from A,P & Addie

 1. How to throw a ball up against the wall if there is no one to play catch with her (even if she technically can't catch yet). Austen

2. How to let out an ear piercing scream when someone is doing something she doesn't like that has the whole store, stands or people at another public venue looking at us. Peyton

3. How to never be idle for one minute without a ball in your hand or at your foot. Austen

4. How to share not one toy with another child but her food with a seemingly starving dog who has gained 5 pounds in 3 months. Adler

5. How to climb up into her brother's bunk bed by herself unassisted. This kid is a climber! Austen and Peyton

Sunday, May 17, 2015

My Littlest Gymnast

As soon as Hailey turned 18 months old, I could enroll her in a parent/tot gymnastics class. This was a day I had been waiting for as Peyton loves to go to gymnastics and as Hailey got older, she didn't want to just sit there and watch Peyton in her class, she wanted to be doing her own class. So for the past month, Peyton attends her class in the gym at the same time as I am doing the parent/tot class with Hailey.

She is definitely one of the younger ones in the class and I wasn't sure how she would do. Surprisingly she understood a lot of the directions and was able to sit nicely in class as well. She isn't a fan of other kids (not used to that one since my other two didn't have that problem since they were in "school" all day) but she is getting better at sharing, taking turns and dealing with them being in her personal space.
But she is a fan of doing somersaults, jumping in a big pit filled with styrofoam, climbing the obstacle course, swinging on the rings and hanging from the bars. She definitely can hang on her own for at least 10-15 seconds. She's amazingly strong...and brave!

I think she may be my dare devil AND my most athletic one yet - watch out Austen! She probably will give you a run for your money in mini golf too!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mudder's Day

Happy Mudder's Day, says Peyton. I kind of like the way she says it as she still hasn't perfected that "th" sound. But, someday soon she will and I am sure I will miss how she was at this very moment, this very Mother's Day. There won't be another one when she's 5 years old.

So this Mother's Day, I wanted to write down the things that I love about being a mother at this very moment when my kids are ages 10 (Adler), 8 (Austen), 5 (Peyton), and 19 months (Hailey).

  • I love at the end of the day when all of the human kids are in bed and I can turn my full attention to Adler. I sit next to her as I stroke her fur and she rests her head in my lap and I just know she feels content and well loved.
  • I love watching Austen play soccer, baseball, basketball, football, etc. even when it's on Mother's Day and it's cold, raining or snowing. There's no other place that I would rather be than cheering on my children and watching them do what they love.
  • I love watching Peyton create. My budding artist produces artwork that I often ask if she really drew all by herself. Wide eyed she tells me that she definitely drew that chick or that dog. Often times when the library has projects to create and I am busy picking out books with Hailey, Peyton takes it upon herself to figure it out and comes back to find me with a fully produced masterpiece.  
  • I love watching how fast Hailey catches on to things like simple words - she has an extensive vocabulary for a 19 month old; can throw and kick a ball like she is a two year old; can almost do a somersault and just understands and follows directions surprisingly well at this age. She surprises me every day with what she can do and what she comprehends.
  • I love seeing Austen being a big brother. I always wanted a boy first who would protect his siblings and he definitely watches out for them and takes care of them and helps his parents with them too. 
  • I love that Peyton has a wicked sense of humor and makes her brother erupt into a fit of giggles...usually at bedtime. 
  • I love that Hailey is my little daredevil. She likes to go down slides, swing high, be thrown up in the air and jump into the pool, off my step, etc. 
  • I love when Adler is running and playing in the yard and I can swear that dogs smile because I can see a huge smile on her face as she runs and plays. 

  • And, I love seeing them all together, every single one of them, and I want to just freeze that moment in time...before someone shouts, gets irritated or needs something from me.
This moment is how I will remember them on Mudder's Day 2015.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

First Communion, Family Heritage, Soccer and Baseball

My first of three First Communions happened this past weekend. I couldn't get over how much the girls' dresses looked like little wedding dresses. I have three and seven more years, respectively, to prepare myself for shopping for two of those! But, this weekend, it was just a suit, shirt, tie and shoes that were needed for the boys. That outfit presented it's own challenges with trying to actually tie a tie on someone else. Tom grew frustrated and Austen didn't want to try anything on (yes, we did a trial run and good thing!). However, the end result was my handsome 8 year old.

As for receiving his First Communion - he was nervous that he was going to mess up the order - prayer hands, bow, Amen, Sign of the cross, prayer hands. He had it down pat til he actually went up there but practice (and lots of church) makes perfect, and the Priests were so nice to the kids helping them all along. Not like in the olden days where they had to swallow the hosts whole before leaving the altar, says Papa. 

It was a gorgeous day and we enjoyed celebrating Austen's third sacrament with our families. 

We also enjoyed Austen's second grade school presentation of exploring their family heritage, which they worked on all year and finally presented to their parents and grandparents on Friday. Papa asked Austen if he thought he'd give up sports to sing and act. He said, no. 

 Check out Austen singing, mouth wide, in the front row, orange plaid shirt.

A portrait of our family by Austen. Love that he put me in a bikini.

Austen's family tree. Can you find Adler?!

After Family Heritage on Friday and First Communion on Saturday morning it was off to a soccer game on Saturday night where they lost 5-4 but Austen scored an awesome goal and had a beautiful assist. Sunday came and it was mass time to receive his Second Holy Communion (still working on the prayer hands, bow, Amen, Sign of the Cross and prayer hands) and then off to baseball for only two innings before leaving for soccer (he still managed to tag a guy out at third and hit a double). At his second soccer game of the weekend, he once again had a goal and another assist from a beautiful corner kick to help his team defeat their opponents.

It was a memorable weekend and the weather certainly helped too! Thanks God!

Sunday, April 26, 2015


Since moving into a newly built house, we've had our share of spiders. That's what happens when your house is open for so long, says my husband. Still I don't like them. Yes, I know they eat flies and are supposedly good little creatures but keep them far away from me. Luckily, now that we are in year two, the spiders have died down a bit in my house (literally). That doesn't mean there isn't an occasional one dropping in!

So, a few weeks ago, Tom was downstairs tending to Hailey while Austen and Peyton were upstairs playing. All of a sudden the kids started screaming "Fire! Fire!"  Alarmed, Tom went to the bottom of the stairs to check out what was going on. Austen and Peyton were hysterical screaming "Fire!" at the top so Tom ran upstairs not to find a fire...but a spider! Ha! He said it sounded just like they were screaming "fire!"

Fast forward to last Friday. Peyton has her annual physical at the doctor and it's the big one - kindergarten. I think Austen got six shots for his kindergarten physical. So I was preparing Peyton. My bravest child when it comes to getting shots, she said she was okay with getting two shots and she would tell the nurse that. All week, I tried to get her to up that number to three or four knowing how many Austen got and thinking we'd be closer to that number. Finally, on the way to the doctor she relented and said 3. Phew.

The nurse comes in. I cross my fingers as I am hoping we are 3 or less shots. She says 1. Peyton says, "This is the best day ever!" One shot. I promised her a toy and a Happy Meal for one shot?!! Oh well. She tells us she is ready to be brave for her shot. The nurse prepares. Peyton freaks out like I have never seen her freak out before during any shot. She's my one who doesn't even cry when she gets them. I hold both her arms and think quickly. "Look spider! There on the wall," I shout as the nurse quickly jabs her in the arm with a needle. "Where?" says Peyton, completely unaware that the nurse had actually just given her a shot while she was distracted looking for the spider. "All done," says the nurse. "What? You're all done?" says Peyton. "I didn't even feel it." And she didn't.

Thank God for spiders.

Monday, April 20, 2015

This is What Happens When...

you leave your door open, your scissors out and a special project you were working on all on the floor of your room.  Your baby sister, who likes to explore the house including your room when you are away at school, will find these things and give your mom a heart attack when she follows her into your room a few minutes later to discover this happening!

When showing the above photos to said 8 year old brother, all he had to say was "Oops. Is my project okay?"

"No," I said. "Your project isn't okay. It's in the garbage now along with your scissors."

Okay, I didn't say that but who could blame me for wanting to do that?! Instead I gathered up the stuff he didn't clean up and put it on his dresser - out of reach from his baby sister.

Disaster averted - for now.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Break!

I don't think I have said those words since I was in college! And, I don't think I've gone on a true spring break since then either. But now with Austen in public school, we have to take vacations around his school schedule. We were lucky before, we could go places in May and have great weather and more options and great prices with less crowds. In March, there are few places you can go that are warm within three hours or less by air. Florida was pretty much it so we tried out Anna Maria Island and we weren't disappointed. 

The sand was as white as seashells and as fine as flour. Austen loved using it for sandcastles but Hailey didn't enjoy walking on it that much. And, Peyton spent more time in the ocean than on the beach.

The kids loved our backyard pool. Peyton grew braver jumping in on her own and Austen got to showcase his fine swimming strokes that he has perfected during his past six months of lessons. Amazing progress by both of them. Hailey loved to splash in the pool and did her own jumping in (with assistance of course!).

Exploring the island - trying out a bike and some ice cream while posing for funny pictures.  

What is vacation without a little mini golf? Austen made us play. Of course he golfs just three over par beating both Tom and me. And after, we got to feed the Gators:)

Great vacation with our kids summed up by a great quote --
"Take Vacations. Go as many places as you can. You can always make money. You can't always make more memories."