Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Extra! Extra!


I have a new trick that is really helping in my Operation Feel Awesome.  Do you want to hear it?


Doing something besides the feeding of the children, the wiping of the children, the cleaning of the children’s feeding messes.

Doing something that I can actually tell myself- look self!  Look what you did today, you sassy minx! 

Instead of looking around at the continual messy chaos and having the siiiinking feeling that my house would look the same if I had stayed on the couch all day.



Yesterday, I made homemade butterscotch pudding.  And, people!! I strutted around that afternoon feeling like a million bucks.  PUDDING! HOMEMADE PUDDING!  I’m sure Brian is sick of hearing about it, which is why I’m so glad I can share it with you!(pudding!!!)


ALSO, I got entirely caught up on laundry.  Which, can sometimes be a tricky one, because the constancy of laundry can actually be depressing and make you feel LESS awesome. 

BUT, if I focus on the fact that I did all of the back laundry that has been looming in my subconscious, the kids didn’t need to ask me to find clean underwear, and I ended the day with a giant pile of clean fluffy towels? WIN!


Today’s extra was making this stew.  I had hot stew waiting for my family at lunch time!  I have it all together!  Now I don’t have to feel too guilty about my kids eating you-know-whats for dinner tonight! (you-know-whats = corn dogs.  Or chicken nuggets.  Or…shhh!…both!)



(this picture is from the other day when Brian surprised the boys with a bag of donut holes, and when we turned around Samuel had stolen the bag and shoved all of them in his mouth.  ALL of them!  I was so proud.)



The last example I will give you is Valentine decorations.  It turns out if I actually take the time to make/hang up the decorations, then I will spend a million more hours admiring how cheerful my house looks.

Tada!  Valentines Day mobile!!


Now, when I walk into the house and step over the shoes and accidentally kick the remote control motorcycle in the middle of the floor and go around the (clean) laundry basket- my eyes are cheerfully focused ahead of me at this pretty thang above my table!


I would like to note that the metallic paper was VERY hard to cut shapes out of, so Brian had to help me and…is watching your spouse cut out metallic hearts for you a love language??  Because it turns out its MY love language! Raaaawr!! 


The End



Friday, January 9, 2015

He keeps me humble


For your reading pleasure I give you:

Things this week that have humbled me as a parent:


1)  Cleaning out our under-the-stairs cupboard for the one millionth time (the kids spill puzzles and games and GAAAH! Someone save me!) and this time I was forcing the main culprit Isaac to help me.  After several minutes of me grumping, and us not finding missing pieces, etc, he looked at me, sighed, and said, “I’m going to need some alcohol!”

(I. have. no. idea.)


2)  At at the toy store yesterday Isaac grabbed a voice-changing-megaphone and was running around yelling…YELLING!…”Shut up!” and “I’m going to poop on your face!” through it while I chased him grabbing at it and hissing “GIVE THAT TO ME! WE DON’T SAY THAT WORD!” etc.


3)  When I went to pick up Isaac from Sunday school and upon seeing me he yelled, “NO! DIE!!!!” and hid.  At least he…likes it there?…


4)  Two time outs at my mom’s house today for my middle child.  The offense?  Hissing at me when I tell him to do something.  HISSING.


What, are you noticing a theme?  That all of these are about Isaac?  Hmmm… strange.


Please feel free to make me feel better by telling me about how your children pee openly in Target parking lots (Isaac), or in your neighbors yard (Isaac), or “moon” their friends (Isaac), or constantly hide to eat forbidden treats, even if they belong to other people (guess who)


Now who wants to come for a playdate with my angels?  Your kids will learn all sorts of new things…

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Just please, please knock.




I don’t actually know how to start this completely random post, so I’m just going to go on and say it:



For those of you without kids (or with good sleepers…you lucky jerks…) who may not know what a “please knock” sign is, let me quickly define it:

The “please knock” sign hangs over your doorbell and is a VITAL part of a successful naptime for your clingy toddler/baby.  Without a “please knock” sign, what otherwise might be a delightful part of your day (“oh!  My amazon package arrived!  Huzzah!”)  becomes your DOOOOOM when the ding-dong wakes up afore mentioned toddler and the afternoon of crying commences.


Anyway, the first time the sign was missing (ding-dong!) I thought it must have fallen off!  The second and third and fourth and fifth time (ding-dong! ding-dong! ding-dong! ding-dong!)  I thought it STILL must have fallen off!

And then I thought waaaaaaaaait a minute.  Like, why am I not seeing these signs somewhere on my porch or yard if it just falls off??

So THAT time I taped that sucker on there with packing tape on all four sides.  And guess what?  That’s right.  IT’S GONE!  AND 10 TIMES SINCE THEN!

Now I have a suspicion about who it is, and it happens to be one of my least favorite of the neighborhood kids (coincidence!), but how do I prove it?

Do I wait by my front door (in my robe, naturally) until I hear something?  And then what?  Do I open the door and shout “Whatareyoudoing??” all scary and surprising?  Or maybe (and this is my favorite option) do I chase them and yell “Come back here nap-ruiner!!!  Naptime is NOT A JOKE!!”?  Wait, am I becoming the crazy lady in the neighborhood?

Sorry to burden you all with this.  It’s not like YOU know who is doing this (Do you? DO YOU???), but sheesh!  It’s all I can think about!

Bye now, I’m off to peep out of my blinds and mutter to myself.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Christmas 2014




Today was back-to-school in our neck of the woods, and it really and truly feels like Christmas is over. 

Hey- maybe I’ll finish taking down all of our Christmas stuff today?  Or maybe just keep blogging and surfing the web and eating cheerios?  Yes, that one.

But anywhoo, I thought that today would be a good time for the ole’ Christmas post!


Joseph woke up at 5 am on Christmas morning, and came into our room 1 trillion bazillion times asking when he could get up (6am) and when he could wake up Isaac (6am) and when it was going to be 6 am.  At 5:45 he asked if he could climb into bed with me to watch my phone…and he stared at my phone for the next 15 minutes solid until yelling out “SIX!!!”

I went downstairs to turn on Christmas lights and start the coffee, and when I came back up he asked me “Coal??  Is it COAL?”  Which is slightly ironic because I intentionally never threatened them with coal this year!  And I could have…ooooooh I could have!

Anyhow, at this point he woke up Isaac, and Brian went downstairs to get ready to take a video of them coming out to see the goods.  I told Joseph to wait just one more minute while I checked to see if Daddy was ready and he said, “I can’t.  I just can’t wait.” with a frantic look in his eyes and just kept walking!

Good news, Brian captured the big moment, and I will post the video soon.


DSC_0077(setting up the Wii- you take a picture of yourself, and it matches you with your closest-match avatar.  I just love this picture of Isaac!)



Samuel woke up a little later and saw his kitchen from Santa (I have eaten more plastic food in the past few weeks than in the past 30 years combined)





The rest of the day looked like this





until about 3 when we finally opened presents.


(a much-desired Lego Junior set from his big brother)





(his first Harry Potter book for me to read to him)



(yes that is Top Ramen noodles.  Its their favorite!)



(from Isaac)



(in this next one I can hear Isaac’s voice saying “Look what you got baby!”)



Then it looked like this again


oooh, it makes me cringe a little!  But here you go!


After a busy past few days we opted to stay home Christmas evening, and I made meatloaf, au grautin potatoes (as per Brian’s request) and sparkling cider.


Then we ALL played wii until bedtime.

Also, after tucking in the children, I sat on the stairs and cried a teensy bit that it was all over.  Happy-sad, just like everything in motherhood it seems.

The End.


Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year!!


Hello world!  How was your New Years?  How was your Christmas for that matter?


I’m a little sad that it is all wrapping up, and a little bit happy to be taking down the clutter, and a little bit excited to start putting up valentines.  (too soon?)

Our little fam partied on New Years with some “china food” ( Isaac’s words), cake on my new cake stand, root beer, family wii time, and a family dance party to the Netflix King Julien’s New Years Countdown!


(right after this we told the boys they had to start dancing or else go to bed)


My resolution this year?

Operation Feel Fabulous!!! Or Operation Feel Awesome!!  I can’t decide! (another resolution: work on decisiveness)

Wanna hear about it?

Well, there’s this blog that I have recently started following, and she always talks about making yourself feel awesome and I thought….waaaaait a minute.  When was the last time I felt awesome??  I feel good.  I feel bad.  I feel tired.  I feel happy.  But Awesomeness seems to have left me behind.


So here’s how it works:

I’m dedicating 2015 to feel more awesome/fabulous, so that it will trickle down to my family and voila!  Happy wife (mom) happy life!

Will taking vitamins daily (esp. vitamin D for we vampires in the pacific northwest) make me feel fabulous?  You betcha!  Down the hatch!

Will eating healthier make me feel healthier and more energetic so therefore more awesome?  Sadly, yes.  Bring on the veggies!

Yummy smelling lotion?  Check!

Lots of candles to combat the darkness? Double check

A clean house?  Probably.

A messy house because I was having fun that day doing something I’d rather do?  Yeppers!

A yummy dessert with my sisters?  Ooooooh yeah!

You see how flexible this is? Do you see how this is a resolution that I will actually want to keep?


And I can’t forget how great I feel when my marriage is running smoothly…..date nights on the calendar monthly!

Also my spiritual health….bible studies and reading plans!

Mental health?….time away from children, and time during the day to blog, read or use my brain!


You guys, I am so excited about this idea.

I’m so excited to start feeling awesome/fabulous (awesomely fabulous?) again.

Shall we check in with this resolution in a few months? Now, Christmas updates will have to wait for another day, I’m off to browse etsy.com because I’m preeeeety sure that 150 small gold heart decals will make me feel awesome.



Friday, December 19, 2014

I’m in my 20s



You guys!

My birthday is on Sunday!

And I’m going to be……THIRTY!!!!  Thirty freaking years old??? (“freaking” is a bad word in our house.  I get a little thrill out of using it)

I’m unsure how this has happened.  And what worries me the MOST is that, before I know it, I will be unsure how 40 happened.  Then 50…you get the idea.

So, quick…ask me how old I am!  Who me?  Oh I’m in my 20s.  NBD.

And, while the countdown continues in my (grey hair free) (for now) head, here are 30 facts you probably didn’t know about me.

Ha!  Just kidding- NO ONE wants to hear 30 facts about me (except Brian of course)  So here are actually 10 facts instead.



1) I came home from the hospital on Christmas Eve in a stocking.  Something that always sounded so adorable and magical, until I became a mother and realized how much freaking stuff (thrill!) you have to get done on Christmas Eve and how having 3 other children and recovering from a very hard birth must have been so exhausting for my poor Mama.  You rock Mama!



2)  I thought that a chimney was called a “chimley” for an inappropriately long period of time.  I still secretly call it a chimley in my head.


3)  Being the youngest of 4, it was sometimes hard for me to accept the signs that I was growing up. (Obviously since I am sitting here sobbing about turning 30)  (not really sobbing, people, it’s a creative embellishment) 

I remember watching a movie…gaaah!  What was it called??!!…Suzy, you will know, because we watched it ALL THE TIME in my pre-teen years.  But anyway, there was this girl who didn’t like the fact that she was getting breasts and so she taped them down!  Haha, silly young girl, but no!  I decided that was genius!  And I would try it!

Sadly, I  taped them UNDER my training bra, meaning that I had to rip off the packing tape from my bare skin.  Without an epidural.

I don’t think I ever told anyone that one.  See! I’m still full of surprises, even in my 20s!


4)  Growing up I had a doll named Isaac Gregry.  Just like my own little Isaac Gregry!  Except the doll was much less naughty.  But my real Isaac is actually cuter, so maybe it evens out?


5)  I sometimes listen to country music, but only in the summer.  I don’t know why.  It just seems summery.


6)  I had terrible acne in high school, and if/when I do get a zit now, it is still a “forbidden topic” for Brian.  No jokes, no mentioning, lets just move past it.  Oh the teenager anguish!  It still stings a little even in my 20s!  Acne, braces, glasses, half-a-head-of-bangs, AND taped boobs?  I was a fox people.  A. Fox.


7)  I am totally that mom.  That mini van mom.  Who has a disgustingly dirty mini van.  Okay, this is not a secret for anyone who has seen my car, but you guys?  I just can’t.  I clean the house, I clean the children, I clean myself, so the car?  It’s out. 

Also, if you ever want to vacuum out my car for me, (cough! MARK! cough!) I will not be offended in the least.  It bugs me as much as it bugs you, folks, so have at it!  Please!


8)  I don’t like the taste of chocolate with mint.  Except for like 1 York peppermint patty per year.  Or some crushed up candy canes on top of my fudge.  Or chocolate mint mochas once or twice a year.  Or mint chocolate chip ice cream which is one of my favorites….waaaaait a minute!!! I am realizing as I type this that the above fact is untrue.  I DO like chocolate with mint apparently!  Eureka!  I just don’t like Andes mints.  Or too much mint.  Or those mint hershey kisses.  

Okay, really, let me try just a small bite of your chocolate mint offering first, please, thank you and no offense.


9)  I’m in my robe by 3:30 in the winter.  This is also not really a secret to anyone who has come over after 3:30.  I think the neighbors must think that I have a chronic illness or something.  So hear this:  I’m not sick, I’m not fresh out of bed (I wish!), I have my clothes on under my robe, I’m just chilly.  And my robe has awesome pockets.


10)  I wear a mouthgard at night.  See? I’m still actually a giant fox!  Poor Brian, I try to wait until he’s sleeping, but the thing is that his children make me so stressed out that I clench my jaw at night.  So this could all be construed as his fault. 

During the day it soaks in a bowl.  Filled with denture cleaner.

What?  Its recommended by the manufacturer!

60 really is just around the corner for me.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Reminders to Myself (and maybe you too)


(unrelated pictures from my solo mama cookie-baking-craziness last weekend.  It was really fun, but thank goodness for Dora.  Oops, I mean BOOKS.)



I dumped out baskets upon baskets of laundry on the floor, making a mountain of things to be folded and put away.  Again.  Again, again again.

I rested my head on that warm mountain for a moment and I thought, “Its okay Caitlin, love.  It won’t be this hard forever.  I promise.”

I whimpered a little, and then got back to work.



“The days are long but the years are short”

“This too shall pass”

“It goes by too fast.”

All of these things point me to the truth that this season, though it feels oh so very very permanent, IS NOT FOREVER.  I guess.  I guess?



Some day I won’t remember that I was sick the whole 2 weeks leading up to Christmas Break 2014. 


Or how every night I would tell my big boys  that they were NOT going to get to watch movies before school…only to change my mind the next morning for 20 more minutes of sleep for sick Caitlin while Joseph asked, “Why do you keep changing your mind?!?”


I won’t remember the broken ornament stash that Isaac revealed to me under the couch.


Or the plate of sugar cookies that he had hidden in the upstairs closet. 


And maybe not even how Samuel wants back into my uterus immediately and heaven forbid that I might want to do anything without him attached to me.



I won’t remember how tired I used to be.  I will say that I was tired, but I won’t remember how it FELT. 

Or how I felt like I did the same 5 things over and over and over day in and day out  (wipe, sweep, feed, wash, discipline.  In case you are wondering.)



I will only remember the joy of this Christmas season- my favorite season!- with three enthusiastic, starry-eyed little boys!DSC_0074

Thank goodness.