Monday, January 30, 2012

extremely loud and incredibly close.

The kids attempted a friday night sleepover. Which started with, "I love Evie. I wish he could be my husband someday." And ended with, "Mom, Evie just licked me."


Here's hoping that your weekend involved minimal licking.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

how to win friends & influence (little) people.

We eat a lot of eggs around here. Like four mornings per weekday we eat eggs: scrambled, fried, casserole-d, you get the idea. So, one day per week I try and do something fun for breakfast. A couple of ideas:
Coconut-banana fudgsicles*:
They thought I was the greatest mom on earth this particular morning. You're welcome, turkeys.
Blend together & then freeze overnight in popsicle molds:
2 T cocoa powder
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
2 small, very-ripe bananas
scant 1/16 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
A little raw honey

We made these with coconut oil and chocolate chips. Even my Clairegirl declared them awesome! High praise indeed.

*Found on pinterest, but unable to locate the original source.

Monday, January 23, 2012

traditions: the friday night sleepover.

A wise friend suggested friday night sleepovers for the big kids and they have been a hit. They love to sleep in each other's rooms. They look forward to it all week. It's adorable to see them become friends and to watch Mister become a big brother. Recently, I asked if he liked being a big brother and he said, "Ingrid is special to me, Mom."
Unrelated: do you know how hard it is to get a decent photo with all 3 kids in it? Nearly impossible. Someone is always crying, someone is making a pooping face and someone is intentionally hiding behind his baby sister. Back when I had one baby, I took great pictures. Just saying.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

a text while the rain comes tumbling down.

Me: Why do we live here?

Him: Here as in our house or Oregon?

Me: Oregon.

Him: Because I had to find you. We can go now.

Friday, January 20, 2012

friday flaxjacks.


Maybe you eat all manner of fluffy baked goods. Or maybe you're gluten free. Maybe a year ago, your husband decided to eliminate starches. Because I love him, I've developed some new cooking habits. (Example: I used to make him banana bread for a treat, now I make him these). In our house, these pancakes are a friday treat that everyone loves.

Combine:
2 c flaxmeal (found in the refrigerated section)
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t salt

Add:
1 T melted coconut oil
5 eggs, beaten
1/2 c half & half or coconut milk

Flaxjacks cook lower and slower than traditional pancakes, so we usually do two pans at a time and put lids over each 'cake.

Yum.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

he.


Loves helping with dishes. Loves salad. Loves to "shake the dressing." Loves listening to the song "Pumped up Kicks" way too much. Loves snuggies.

He sat quietly in the library today with hands folded and listened to all of the stories. A year ago, I would leave the library near tears, near cursing as he would sprint out of the children's room, unlocking the safety gate. I would waddle after him, unable to catch up or lift him. My life felt hard and small.

He still lets me rock him. This is not a small thing. During those months that I couldn't hold him I felt like I was missing it. Like he wouldn't be a baby by the time life felt normal again. But at 3, he is a treasure. And I feel like those months destroyed by locusts and uncomfortable pregnancy have been given back to me.

Monday, January 16, 2012

a birthday adventure.

This was not the year for travel without kids. Saturday I turned 35 and Nate and I took the kids north. Originally we had planned a weekend away. But as we planned we realized that we couldn't see these particular people without taking our family. I'm so glad we did.
We saw old friends.And new ones.

There was snow and there were snowmen and we got stuck and unstuck in our minivan. There was coffee and dads taking kids for playdates and best of all- my dear friend and "birthday advocate" who made sure that I was celebrated sufficiently.

We love you all.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

you can lead a horse to water but you can't make her dance.

Yesterday I thought I'd go rogue and abandon rest time and keep an extra little boy. Ingrid had napped late in the morning and we had ballet at 3, so the playdate seemed reasonable. As we loaded up to take the friend home, I realized that not only was my extra carseat not installed, but we had taken the actual seat out as well. So, first I installed my 5 year old, my friend's 3 year old and my cranky baby into the van. Then I lugged the seat and carseat to the driveway and attempted to install both, while Mister ran wild (no idea why I chose to leave HIM unstrapped). The backseat buddies made various helpful suggestions. You should put the carseat in, Mom. I smacked myself in the face with the seat. I refrained from swearing. I called Nate and he talked me through seat installation. Done. We were on the road.

We drove the friend home and then headed to ballet. This was a new class for the girlie and kind of a big deal. It is smack in the middle of naptime, but she has a friend in the class and she really really wanted to try it out. So we went. Her very tired brother was a champ, watching patiently from the hall. Ingrid charmed the other parents as we waited. As we're heading home, I asked Claire what she thought of the class. Her response: I think I want to go back to doing nothing.

Looks like next week we'll skip ballet and go back to doing nothing.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Gratitude E. Book

How was I to know that this was the last picture I'd take of her before her front tooth fell out (into a muffin)???

I know it looks like it says, "Gratitud ebook," but Claire is 5, let's all give her a little slack. In the spirit of 1000 gifts, I'm getting them writing. We spent the afternoon decorating Gratitude Books, to be filled a bit at a time. I love to hear their lists...

...stickers
...it's not raining
...riding my bike at the park

And the boy:
...forklifts
...buses
...the shop

And this weary mama:

....drops of rain on the window like lace
...when he dresses himself (completely backward)*
...really seeing the person you've married

And now it's your turn. Maybe a friend gave you a journal last fall and it's piled under books and papers and magazines. Pull it out and fill it up. Maybe you don't have a blank journal. Head to the dollar store and pick up your own Gratitud E Book and see what writing these little gifts of grace might do in your own weary heart. Let's do this thing. 3 gifts a day up to a 1000.

Edited to add: The HE who dresses himself completely backward is the 3 year old in our house, not Nate. In case you were confused.

Friday, January 06, 2012

a new year. a new day.

I mentioned that I'm not a huge resolution person, but I did make a few goals. One of them (hilariously) was to try and be in bed by 9:30. My kids go to bed at 7 so in theory that should give me a couple of hours each night to do whatever adult-like thing I need to do. Life is better around here if I get enough sleep. So, working with that goal in mind seemed simple enough. I even reasoned that once my "sleep tank" was filled up, I could add another goal in a month or so.

AND THEN... My very easy baby who has slept 12-13 hours a night since she was weeks old, developed a fever and decided night nursing was her THING. We have had a week where she wants nothing but to be glued to my chest. And my goal of going to bed at 9:30 hasn't felt practical when my baby is screaming in the next room.
I took this photo of her in the mirror and am struck that not that long ago, I was taking pictures of my big pregnant self in that same mirror. It makes a week of interrupted sleep feel more like an inconvenience instead of a crisis.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

diy paint-booth.

I'm not a big resolution person, but after spending some time thinking about what I'd like to accomplish this year, I realized that the hours between the end of rest time and dinner have gotten brutal. I'm committing to planning simple things to do with my kids during those hours so that we can ween ourselves from our Cat in the Hat addiction and maybe have some fun. I'll share some of our afternoons here.

Yesterday, we used little cars as paintbrushes. I like this kind of craft because we have all of the supplies on hand (we used Matchbox cars as potty training treats for a certain little boy who took MUCH longer than 3 days to train). This girl would rather finger paint than almost any other activity, so this was a win. Success. What do you do during the afternoon slump? We're looking at another five months of soggy weather and I'm not that excited about daily puddle jumping (as much as the kids would love it).