Addie {inquisitively}: Mom, can we go to the North Pole to give Santa his cookies?

Me {tenderly, but matter-of-factly}: Addie, the North Pole is really, really, really far away.

Addie {brilliantly}: Well, we can watch a movie...


Baby #4 Update

I went in last week to have another ultrasound. This one was to take more pictures of the heart since they didn't get a very good look last time.

Her heart looks just great. Four pretty chambers and a strong beat.

She's grown a lot in the last month. Up from 12 oz. to 1 lb. 15 oz. She's also measuring (length and width wise) almost 2 weeks ahead of my calendar due date. None of this is surprising; all of our kids have been on the big side at birth.

Here's the latest pictures of what's going on in there:
Anything that shows up as white is bone. So, her hand is laying by her upper thigh and her legs are curled up toward her head. She's also laying transverse still. So her head is on the left side of my tummy and her feet on the right - straight across my middle.


I Need a Wife

You know, someone who will:

  • wash the dishes so when I reach for one they are magically available for my convenience
  • cook my food so when I walk in the door hot and delicious food is ready for me
  • do my laundry so when I get dressed all of my clothes are miraculously available to me without even having to think about it
  • clean my house so that I can enjoy being home without the worry of actually maintaining the place
  • make my appointments so that I don't have to waste my valuable brain space keeping track of myself
  • wake up in the night with the kids so that my sleep isn't interrupted because I have real things to do in the morning and need a full night's rest to be at my best
  • take my kids to their various appointments so I can spend my time doing things of real consequence
  • always be available to babysit the kids so I can do the things of import in life without worrying about the kids and their needs
  • arrange for date nights so I can enjoy a break from the mundane life I lead without having to waste my time calling the sitter, hatching the plan, and preparing the home and kids so we can leave and have a good time
  • maintain my family relationships so I can see and enjoy my family without the bother of actually calling them or writing them to set up such events
  • plan all family events so I can have fun with my kids and family without the mess of finding a venue, creating a budget, gathering the necessary supplies, contacting the family, making reservations, packing the goods, predicting every possible problem and providing every possible solution, or cleaning up the whole mess
  • shop for the household so that when I need soap or food or a light bulb it's always available, and I never have to go without, but don't have to worry about any of it so I can spend my time doing things that really matter
  • worry about my comfort and happiness so that I am well taken care of without having to actually take care of myself
  • remember where every barrette, shoe, sock, book, tape measure, or miscellaneous item was last deposited so that I won't have to waste my time putting things in their rightful place but will always have what I need at hand
  • cancel her own plans to take care of the needs of everyone in the household so that I don't have to be inconvenienced or miss out on something that is important in my life
  • ponder the kids every need and what is best for them and where they need extra attention or if they are thriving so that I can just enjoy the fun part of parenting
  • completely set aside her own needs so that my needs are always met because life is just really that stressful, and I can't possibly be bothered to worry about such things


The Happiest Place on Earth

That's right. We went to Disneyland. We brought all three kids and Grandpa Bob came, too. All in all the trip was a great success.

But don't be fooled: Disneyland is the happiest place on Earth where people cry all day long. With toddlers and young kids in tow, it's to be expected.

We did have lots of fun and the kids are still talking about the characters so it was well worth the effort.

On Paradise Pier at Ariel's Grotto. We chose to start our visit at the princess breakfast. We've done character breakfast's twice and both times it's been the highlight of our trip.
With Ariel. She's their favorite.
While we were eating, the princesses came out to much fanfare and excitement. Of course, we took a picture with each one. The fairest of them all, Snow White.
And Cinderella.
Sleeping Beauty.

Then, we moved on to the Ariel's Underwater Adventure ride. It's somewhat new and we'd never been on it before. Super cute. One of our favorites.

We stayed at California Adventure for a bit

and then head over to Disneyland.

Goofy's house in toon town.
Inside Minnie's house.
Waiting to see Minnie. Addie simply adores her and hasn't stopped raving about Minnie since we got home.
The famed mouse herself.
We saw lots of characters in Toon Town. Daisy Duck was out for a bit so we grabbed a picture with her. 
 The park wasn't too busy so we didn't have to stand in too many lines. We rode all the must-do's like Pirates (which broke down for 20 minutes or so. The kids now refer to it as "the dark ride where there was fire and we sat for a long time"), Peter Pan, the Tea Cups, Toy Story Buzz shooter things, the rockets, Dumbo and Autopia.

Jungle cruise.
In Tarzan's tree.
 The new Cars Land was a zoo with a wait no less than 65 minutes so Grandpa Bob and Lexi took off to brave the line and had a ton of fun. We stayed for the parade our last night. What a way to wrap it all up! (I had to hold Emmy so I didn't get even a single picture, but if you go, it's a must see!)

Addie's Preschool Party

Addie's preschool had a Halloween party. She was so excited to wear her costume and show her favorite teacher - Miss Marsha - her outfit.
Ready and excited!
Emily was in rare form. 
Addie sat next to Mark. Here she is singing along with her class. Mark's not so sure about the whole deal. 

Comparing armor.

Emily yelling at me for trying to take a picture.
Addie had a great day. She just loves preschool, and all that comes with being a preschooler!




Carving our home grown pumpkin.
A first for Lexi; she was willing to put her hand inside the pumpkin and touch the nasty stuff!
Poor unsuspecting Emmy. She had no idea what lay in wait for her.
So not happy.
Our creations!
And, to go with? Pumpkin Pie, of course.
Wouldn't be Halloween without some caramel apples, too.
The big party to start off the whole she-bang. Firefighter, dog, and spider girl. 


5 months, 3 weeks

So the picture is at 5 months, 3 weeks, but I'm writing this at 6 months, 1 week (or something like that).

This pregnancy has been a lot like my others. The only bummer is that with each one, I stay sick longer. This time was 18 weeks. It's livable, like most miserable experiences, but it does suck. I've felt some waves of emotions that aren't typical for me. I'm usually very un-needy, not weepy, independent and capable. Not that my life has changed, I still function the same, but occasionally, I get this strong wave of feeling sad, or needy, or vulnerable. Definitely off-putting for me; I don't like it one bit.

I've gained 5 pounds so far. At times, I wanted to eat nothing but junk to try and make the sick go away, but in reality, nothing makes it better so feeding the beast doesn't do anything but add unnecessary pounds.

The baby is very active. We get to have another ultrasound in a few days to check out her heart and make sure all is well. I like the chance to see in there so I'm excited. We are also going to do a 3D ultrasound in a month or so; we've never done that before so it should be a cool experience.

My memory is all but gone. If I've lost something, I don't even try to recall where it might be. You know, when you're not possessed by another being (i.e. pregnant), you can think about something, and feel that it's within your mind's grasp. There's hope you'll suddenly recall what it is you're trying to find or where you left something or what you're supposed to be doing. Pregnancy all but kills that part of my brain.

They call this the "wonder phase". It's that happy time where there's a baby bump instead of just looking fat, but your body is still working pretty right. You're not in pain yet. Sleep is still possible. Tying your shoes is still possible. Your face and feet aren't bloated beyond recognition yet.

But, the sad truth is that once you've been pregnant, your body conveniently remembers the experience and goes from normal to trashed almost immediately. My hips hurt. My feet have started swelling. My hands get really stiff, and won't work by the end of the day. It's really all par for the course. I do have sciatica this time around. I've never had that before. I really hope that after I have the baby, it goes away. It's not debilitating, but it's pretty uncomfortable. I don't dwell on the physical irritations, though, because I've still got almost 1/2 a pregnancy to survive and if I admit to misery now, I'll be wishing for death in a few short weeks. It's really all part of the process, and complaining won't help or change it anyways.

The girls are excited to have another sister. They talk about what life will be like when the baby comes. They have all offered to babysit. The little ones are especially aware of babies when we are out on the town and always point them out to me.

I feel strong, overall. I'm still completely engaged as mom during the day (like there's any other choice for a mom, though, right?). We still go and do, just like I'm not growing another person in there. I just finished coaching soccer and I'm still giving riding lessons. At night, I'm a useless blob, but I try to do all of my "chores" before I hit my wall, and don't bother with feeling guilty. If something doesn't get done, it'll be there tomorrow. Allen tries to do a little more since I'm a fixture on the couch after 8 p.m., and that's been a relief to me. But, all in all, I feel pretty good.

You'll have to excuse the toilet in the background. The jerk photo bombed my picture.


With the upcoming election, Alexis has been learning about the voting process in school. In fact, she got to cast her very own vote today.

Her paper had two choices: the elephant or the donkey. As you can see from the instructions, you cut out your choice, and then each student pastes his or her choice on the board so the class can see who won the "election". When you cast your vote, you even get a little sticker that says, "I voted".

Allen was checking Lexi's homework and asked her about her choice.

Allen {inquisitive}: Lexi, why'd you choose the donkey?

Lexi {rationally}: Because Jesus rode a donkey, and I want him to be happy with my choice.

If only it were so simple, right?

About Me

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What started as a way to communicate with far away friends and family has become a place for this horse trainer/HR manager turned stay at home mom of 3 girls to hold on to a bit of her own identity. It's my take on the ins and outs, the ups and downs, the thoughts and feelings, the mistakes and triumphs of this family as we bumble our way to eternity.