Winter Desert

The sunshine glaring through the windows creates a mosaic pattern on my hardwood floors,

light, dark, medium, tan,

 bronze, beige, and brown woodgrain,

play in patterns on my dining room floor.

The icicles drip like leaky faucets from the awnings until they completely disappear. The crispy ice that is frosting the trees crackles and crumbles onto frozen sidewalks.

I look out my dining room window where last years garden looks like a dusty desert with crispy left over plants from last season. It is a brown oasis in the middle of a snow bank. I never got to pull it out last year because I was in the hospital (which I will write about at a later date).

Looking at it makes me sad. Sad that I missed the last harvest. You can see an over-ripened tomato frozen and opaque, sagging from the brittle vine. A bright red jalapeno clings to a brittle branch.

I’m missing the days that Bradley and I would walk around barefoot picking peppers and watering the garden. I would also send him through a jungle of tomatoes, holding up a couple of branches, “Get the RED ones.” I was too pregnant to squeeze in there anyway.

I’m ready for spring. I’m ready for green grass between my toes and hot cement burning my bare feet. I’m ready for sun burns and fireflies. Mosquito bites and birds chirping. Lemonade and iced tea. Air conditioning and water slides. Flower gardens and steaks on the grill. Ok…forget spring. I’m ready for summer.

I was really debating on whether or not I was going to plant a garden this year, considering I am so busy with all these children. But I have talked myself into it. I managed to do it last year when  I was big and pregnant, so I can do it this year with babies in tow. 

I am ready to dig in the dirt, pull weeds, and eat veggies. I think the kids would also miss running through it to get the baseball and hearing me yell, “Get out of the garden unless you’re going to pull weeds!”

C’mon snow! MELT!!!

A Snippet of Listening and Watching

Today was such a busy day. I am tired and ready for bed, so tonight will be a super short post.

I can’t remember the last time that I got 6 hours of sleep in a row. I usually do during the weekend because Brad is home, but not for the last couple of weekends because we have had so many plans. So I am ready to hold my breath and tip toe these babies to bed. Hope they stay asleep because I am soooo ready for bed!

I am sitting here listening. Listening to the thunder. Listening to the weather on the nine o’clock news. Listening to Bradley whine because he needs to go to bed. Listening to Brad grumble and tell Bradley to knock it off. Listening to my fingers click, click, clicking away as I type. Listening to Collin breath as he sleeps and Bradley yawns. There is more thunder.

I am watching the boys all snuggled and piled into the recliner watching tv. I am watching Elsie sleep in her swing and Mallie is to the right of me swaddled in a Care Bears blanket. I am watching Murphy sleep in the kid’s chair, I hear him sigh. I am watching Bradley give his dad a good night kiss. Here he comes…I get my hug and steal my kiss.

I hear more thunder and see raindrops or sleet, can’t tell which, sprinkling the window. The lightning strikes the winter sky in a blinding white that is just brilliant against the dark snow- covered fir trees (or pine trees, not sure). My hot Chai is sitting on the window ledge next to me. I am ready to guzzle the rest down and snuggle in bed with my Kindle and read until I fall asleep.

Good night.


“Pick That Up, Please.”

As I reached the top of the steps John Cena the action figure bit my big toe. Buzz Light Year grabbed my ankle and refused to let go. I told him I was going nowhere near Infinity or Beyond and to leave me alone. Hotwheels lined up and revved their painted threats and little army men stood their ground in a plastic mess. I threatened to melt them all or pull out their stuffing…they didn’t listen. So I yelled at the boys, “Pick up this mess!”

Only Collin came running to attempt this request. Bradley used to be so well trained, I don’t know what happened…probably being 5. Bradley can be a challenge and you have to get creative to get him going, or just threaten to take away his video games and that usually gets him motivated. But Collin, oh sweet little Collin, he is another story…

Collin doing dishes.

With Collin I always have an extra shadow following me. A little blonde hair, blue-eyed angel who is Mommy’s extra couple of hands. He is always there, no matter what I’m doing; it could be dishes, folding laundry, feeding babies, you name it and he is there. If I suddenly stop, he is running into the back of me. I often wonder why we even bought him Christmas presents because he never plays with them. He rather be in the cupboards stacking Tupperware or banging pots and pans.

When I do the dishes I bring in the step stool so he can help. Tonight he climbs up and is supposed to be rinsing. I look over and he is wearing the colander as a hat. I chuckle to myself. This is why doing dishes isn’t so bad, even if I do have to re-wash half of them. And every time I put something into the sink he says, “Tank too” (thank you).

He even helps unload and load the dishwasher. He puts away the silverware, but never in the right spot. Oh well, it keeps him busy and temporarily out of the way so I can unload the rest of the dishes. And most of the time clean  Tupperware lids get washed in the dishwasher. It’s all good. OR…my favorite from this evening – I hear this weird scraping sound and turn around…Collin has a Tupperware bowl on each foot and his walking/sliding across the kitchen floor. I decided to call it “Tupperware Skating” or “Leftover Skiing.”

Mommy and Baby Collin, 2009

So this kid is always up to something and I can’t turn my back for a minute. And he is extremely fast! So I also have him pick things up for me all the time and he loves it. It is also something I LOVE about this age. It is extremely helpful when I have one of the babies in the Sleepywrap, which usually happens when I’m doing the dishes. I will drop something, “Hey Collin, pick this up for Mommy, please,” and he tells ME “thank you” when he’s done. lol

So of course I am constantly dropping things, over and over and over again. It makes him happy and all I want is for my children to be happy. “Pick that up, please.”

***Note***  I LOVE LOVE LOVE my Sleepywrap and have used it with the last three of my babies. It has came in handy at the park, mall, work, home, and a million other places. It should probably be a whole other post in itself. I highly recommend it.

Friday Favorites: May 2008

So every Friday I am going to post some of my favorite old pics. It’s my way of reminising…and catching up on my scrapbooking. It’s amazing how things can change so fast…and how my babies are growing so quickly. It really makes me realize to enjoy every minute with my kids because pretty soon they will be grown up and independent. And I’m not getting any younger and not having any more babies. These will keep me plenty busy for years. It just all goes by so fast!

Life before Collin and the twins.

I love getting all dressed up and taking pics. This doesn’t happen very often. This was taken at Brad’s mom’s wedding. Look how little Bradley was there. awwww… and that is when we called him Baby Bradley. He’s kinda grown out of it now, even though he will always be my baby.

It just seems like yesterday we took these pictures, but it was 3 years ago! and 3 babies ago! (yea, we have had 4 babies in 5 years- lol)

Mommy and Bradley


Back then I would have never thought that I would be where I am now, with four kids. It’s kinda strange to think that we doubled the kids in one pregnancy. (plus there are Brad’s two older boys, Taigyn and Cedrik. So actually that makes 6 kids)
But I’m happy where I am at now. It feels like I was always meant to be here, with all these beautiful babies. You never know where life will take you.

There are Brain Eating Ghosts in my Basement

I wasn’t able to get any laundry done today because there are  brain eating ghosts in my basement. For real.

It all started when I was doing laundry…

which is a chore I do not particularly like, but has to be done. I get in a mode of sorting and tossing, make a pile here, kick some stuff over there, glance into the other room and check on the boys. I peel off the soft pink lint from the dryer screen and smoosh it in my hand as I finish throwing in the next load of blankets, add a dryer sheet, and am ready to get outta there. “C’mon, kids! Lets go back upstairs.”

Bradley rolls up to me, “Hey, mom. Pretend I’m a ghost and you can’t see me,” he says, jumping off his scooter. (yea, we ride scooters in the basement, we have cabin fever.)

“Collin, did you hear something?” I say, playing right along and walking past Bradley.

Bradley outstretches his arms in zombie fashion and starts moaning like a ghost, “I’m going to eat your brains.”

“I can’t see anything, but I sure did hear something,” I say to Collin, running and picking him up, “C’mon, baby! We gottta get out of here!” I swoosh down and scoop Collin up, “There are ghosts down here,” and up the stairs I sprint.

At the top of the steps I glance back and see Bradley’s smile over my shoulder. I shut the door in his face. Ha ha. I love pretend.

“Ma-OOOOO-om! I was right behind you.”

“I think that ghost is upstairs now,” I say as I look over him and walk right past him. His eyes light up again and he starts chasing me, “Brains taste soooo good. MMMMmmmm…CHOMP. Chomp.”

Bradley came home from preschool with his crown. He so reminded me of Max from, "Where the Wild Things Are." Especially with all the pretending we have been doing.

I want to stop and tell him that “in real life” zombies eat brains and walk with their arms out, and ghosts float around moaning…but who says in Bradley’s world of pretend? So I play along. BUT…you have to remember who makes the rules in pretend- the five-year old, of course!

And these are my days…

Changing three sets of dirty diapers  throughout the day, waking up and feeding TWO babies at 3 am, working on a volcano sized pile of laundry before it erupts and engulfs us all with dirty clothes, scrubbing the bathroom floor on my hands and knees (and realizing these boys need to aim better), scraping toothpaste off the bathroom sink, and cooking dinner is hard work. And that is just a few of the things I do around here. We wont talk about the dust bunnies under the couch mocking me or the cobwebs in a couple of the corners cursing at me. Ok. ok. I’m getting carried away and exaggerating…only on the last part though.

I also get to…

Dance in my pajamas, build boats out of play-doh, graph with Skittles and eat the results, play with friendly monsters that live under the bed, count on my fingers and toes, build forts, eat cheese pizza under the dining room table, play with army guys, and run from brain eating ghosts…these are company perks.


No Need For An Alarm Clock, I Have Kids

Morning Girls: Elsie (in back) and Mallie (up front)

I don’t need an alarm clock anymore. Not because I don’t work or have kids I have to get off to school. I don’t need an alarm clock because I have four children, three of them under the age of two. So there is no chance that I will ever get to sleep past 7am, at least probably not for the next year or two. (The picture to the left is one half of my alarm clock.)

 I would like to say that I am used to waking up at all hours of the night and early in the morning, but I’m not. Well, it is getting easier waking up for the 3am feedings, and shhhh… I am starting to enjoy this secret pocket of silence, it is the waking up 3 hours later that is hard. I am no super mom, and it is ok, I can face reality. I need sleep.

 Most of the time when I hear the babies (I have 3 month old twin girls) stirring early in the morning, I bury my head deeper under the covers and close my eyes even tighter and repeat silently to myself…”please go back to sleep.please go back to sleep.please go back to sleep,” as if I could will them back to sleep with my thoughts. This never happens. I end up stumbling out from under the warm covers, pop a pacifier in one of their mouths, hoping it will keep them quiet for 20 minutes, like a snooze button, so I can literally dive back into bed headfirst. Usually this will work one time, until my diva baby starts screaming. She doesn’t fuss, she screams at the highest pitch possible, forcing me to jump out of bed. I give up the pacifier snooze button, never works for her, and just grab her and put her in bed with me. This might allow me an extra thirty minutes to sleep, depending on the morning.

The sun is sneaking through the cracks of the shades and assaulting my eyes. Ughhh… how can it be morning already?

I squeeze my eyes shut tight and wish I could roll over, but I’m holding a baby, so I stay stiff as a zombie. I contemplate if it is worth it to go back to sleep because most of the time the momentary silence is just a trick. But I am so tired I start to slowly drift away back  into dreamland. 

I don’t even get to put a dent in my pillow when I hear one of the boys. Really?! It’s only been ten minutes. I reach over and grab my phone to confirm this…6:45am. I try to just pretend I don’t hear Bradley and Collin in the next room, even though it is next to impossible. “Collin, quit touching the tv. I’m trying to find fishing.” Bradley has been into watching fishing on tv. He seen it over the weekend and is now bummed he can’t find it during the week. He thinks he just didn’t wake up in time. I told him it was only on on Sundays. He just wont believe me. He was into cartoons, guess that wont do now.

So this is how my morning goes. Eventually the boys will start arguing too much, or Collin starts yelling, “momma…maaaaammmmmma…” or the girls keep waking back up and I can’t trick them with a pacifier anymore, they are demanding their bottles. Ughh…I am not a morning person but I drag my butt out of bed to get the day started. Diapers, bottles, breakfast. Throw in a cup of hot tea for me. It is rushed and frantic as I scramble around getting all this done with 2 screaming babies. I tell Bradley to let out the dog and I throw Collin in his highchair. I manage a couple of yawns in between and  finally I get everybody settled, turn on the TODAY Show, and sit with my tea. *sigh*  

The boys are content crunching on their cereal and I am finishing up feeding the girls. They usually hang out next to me on the couch (see picture above) as I check my e-mail and start my blog post for the day.

 By the end of breakfast my caffeine has kicked in and I am ready for the day. Sometimes I find my cape and feel like super mom getting tons of things done and doing all kinds of fun activities with the kids. And other days I can’t find my cape and don’t get a darn thing done. I guess there is tomorrow for that shower. Oh well, I just look at the cute little boys running around or the two precious babies sitting next to me and I know I am a lucky mommy.


One Foot, Two Foot, Three Feet, Big Feet: A Dr. Suess Inspired Post




Mallie and Elsie's preemie feet

Teeny, tiny, precious feet,


Collin likes to kiss feet and eat feet…

The twins like to kick feet.

Bare feet, stocking feet, foot foot foot…

Jumping feet, walking feet,  running feet,

Foot, Foot, Feet,

Jammie feet, funny foot…

EWWWwwwwww…stinky feet!


Purple Monkeys, Bouncing Babies, and One Tired Momma

The Quad Cities Mother of Twins Club had a fundraiser tonight at Monkey Joes, one of those bouncy jungle gym places. So the twins stayed home with their dad (they are too little to go anyway) and I took the boys on a little mommy/son date. We had a great time and I realized it has been FOREVER since I have taken both my boys out without babies. We had a great time. We had Kids’s Meals at Burger King and a bouncing good time at Monkey Joe’s. That is why this post is going to be super short, super simple, and not very creative. I am one tired mommy.

They ran, they jumped, they played. They bounced, they skipped, they slid.

Thirsty boys taking a break.

I ran, I chased, I cheered, I watched. I climbed, I slid, and now I am one tired momma


good night


Parent Teacher Conferences and Chicken Butts

Daddy:  Guess What?

Bradley:  What?

Daddy:  Chicken Butt

HaHaHaHahahahhahahaha!!!!!!!!!  At least to a 5-year-old it is hilarious. We thought it was pretty darn cute too, until we went to Bradley’s preschool parent teacher conference. Okay, I confess, it still is kinda funny.

Last Thursday we walked down the hallway filled with crayon drawings, stick figures, and torn up magazine collages with clumps of glue hanging onto string and googly eyes, to see Bradley’s teacher for our parent teacher conference.

I love seeing all the drawings, labeled on the bottom with thick black marker in the teacher’s plain print so you know what the subject is. Many kids drew pictures of their moms, friends, or Valentine’s cupcakes. Not my son, he drew a carpet. A carpet? Really? All these cute drawings, and that is what he does. At least I can say it was the most original piece of art.  Who knows what he was thinking.  Which got me to thinking…I wonder what she will have to tell us. Last time we got a pretty good report, so I was assuming it would be about the same because I haven’t gotten any phone calls from the school, thank goodness.

I sat flipping through laminated construction paper books looking at the cute pictures of field trips and their simple sentences. I found Bradley in a couple of the books. I just can’t believe how much he has grown up. He’s turning into a little boy. AND…he has a little boys sense of humor. The teacher told us he was a joy to have in class, except that he sometimes uses “inappropriate language” (just to note, she was looking at Brad when she said  this, ha). She said that there were some words that he shouldn’t be saying at all, but mostly he has gotten into trouble for saying “chicken butt.”

She explained not that it is a bad word, but it is when he uses it, like in the middle of story time. And he has said it SO much, all he has to say now is “chicken” and he gets the whole class going. The teacher says, “I know he has older brothers, and a Dad. I figure he has picked it up there.” I was just trying not to bust up laughing as Brad explains with rosy cheeks that that one is his fault, it is their little joke. Along with Bradley saying “jackwagon” all the time from the Geico commercial. So now I just picture him saying, “chicken…chicken. CHICKEN,” and getting all the laughs and attention.


We talk to him about it and tell him not to do it anymore. We try to tell him with a straight face.

And tonight…Bradley is playing with his learning laptop that will say the letters as you push them. Guess what his Dad taught him tonight. “Bradley, type these letters. I.C.U.P.” and they laughed and laughed and laughed. Bradley did that one at least 50 times, cracking up laughing each time. “I see you pee. I see you pee.” hahahaha. Now I’m just waiting to hear about that one from the teacher. Boys! 😉

What are some of the crazy things your kids have said at inappropriate times? I love to hear these stories. Just leave a comment to share 🙂

Papa Bear

First, meet Papa Bear, the other half to the puzzle, and my partner in crime.
Brad can be a teddy bear…sometimes… all soft and cuddly and sweet. He can also be like a grouchy ol’ bear that you woke up from hibernation 2 months too early.

All joking aside, he is my hard-working man and we have all kinds of fun in raising our sweet and crazy family.

I realized I had all kinds of pictures of me and the kids posted already,  but none of Brad. And he is a pretty important piece to this puzzle…so I figured I better represent. And there will be more to come, he is just not crazy about the camera.

Brad and the Boys

This is an older picture of Brad and the boys, but one of my favorites.

See…he can be soooo sweet and cuddly.

Collin and Daddy

He is also one of the biggest and rowdiest kids of them all.

It's all in good fun and wears them out. Poor Taigyn...but Cedrik is doing well in this pic 🙂

Collin is not to sure about this football thing.

And yes, that is football, keep away, and wrestling all in the kitchen. Can’t wait for summer.

(and thank goodness I got some girls.)


p.s. And I am always the party pooper, “You guys better calm down! You are going to break something,” or “Someone is going to get hurt.”

This time it was poor Bradley.  (photo courtesy of Taigyn, only a big brother will say, “stop, let me get your pic,” at a time like this).

Poor Baby!