Mommy’s Lil’ Helper

Oh, Collin. My dear sweet Collin. Who is standing on the arm of the couch right now and jumping into me…. and driving me crazy. I have told him the stories of the little monkeys falling off the bed…he doesn’t listen very well, like most two-year olds.

There are some days I feel like I am in one of David Shannon’s “No, David!” books, seriously. I know I have said it before, but it is like a rerun I live every day.

“No, Collin! You can not sit on your sisters!”

“No, Collin! You can not touch people’s eyeballs!”

“No, Collin! You can not drink out of puddles!”

And the list goes on and on… I try to be a “yes” mom, a positive reinforcement mom, a mom who lets her kid experience things…I try to give alternatives…

But sometimes you just have to say, “NO!”  And quite honestly, I don’t feel bad about it. I believe in teaching in many ways, and one of them is “No” and “Stop.”

I don’t freak out…wait, slash that…I try not to freak out about the little things. Sure, take out all the clothes out of your dresser drawers (which keeps him busy for hours). You can help me fold them back up and put them away (which he loves). You dumped out the whole tote of crayons AGAIN? Really?!  Oh, well…

He is my lil’ man and my shadow.  If I stop too quick, he runs into the back of me. But unlike shadows, I often trip over him.

But seriously, who can refuse help like this. Sweet blue eyes and a cute little smile with his little fang teeth coming in, those are sharp! I know, lil’ stinker. But that’s another story.

He loves to be held and will try to scoot any other baby off of mommy’s lap. He is also really into mocking my “mommy look” that I give him…which I do my best not to crack up laughing. It usually looks like his eyes are going to roll back into his head. He giggles and runs when he gets into trouble, which he is usually looking for. He also has a very helpful 5-year-old brother who helps him out by whispering in his ear. He can also be such a little stinker, stealing the babies’ pacifiers and running as fast as he can outta there, sisters screaming and immobile behind him. Just wait until they start moving…Oh, my!

BUT…when he is sweet…he is very sweet. Check out my super helper in the video below. So precious.

***Note: this does not happen all of the time. Most of the time he is rolling on them or squeezing their poor little toes. Good thing I got it on video.***

There are times when I can’t see straight or complete a sentence because I am constantly redirecting him while balancing one baby on my hip and entertaining the other with my foot. But it’s okay, because I know that way too soon, he will be “a big boy” and wanting to do everything himself. So I get as many kisses as I can and cuddle my sweet little baby, who barely had any time to just be a baby himself  (poor baby brother of twins, even though I’m sure they will have their own lil’ gang soon enough).

Oh, all the things he does…like in the example below.I turned around for a second, and this is what I found. lol.

Collin & Mallie

You just never know.


p.s. I put Collin to bed about a half hour ago. He usually just goes to sleep, except for tonight for some reason. I went up to the bathroom and he was just sitting on the steps, staring at me like some child from a scary movie who should be walking out of a cornfield or something. Scared the crap out of me.

You just never know. haha

Sunday at the Farm

Packing up to go anywhere can be difficult. I feel like I am packing for a week’s vacation just to go out for the day; diapers for both babies and Collin (can’t wait till he’s potty trained), wipes, formula, bottles, extra clothes just in case, burp rags, blankets, bibs, etc…and then I do a head count to make sure I have everyone. Then one last head count before I back out of the driveway…and I run the list through my head…hmmmm….what am I forgetting? “Bradley, did we let the dog inside?”  But once we are on the way I am not turning around, unless it’s for the dog.

We had a great time Sunday at the farm and all of the packing was well worth it. Spending time with Grandma Chris and Grandpa John, goat, horse, chickens, four wheeling, catching tadpoles and frogs, and the list goes on.

I will let the pictures and videos tell the story.

Twisted Sister (chicken) & Jasper (pony)


Collin needs no toys…he can entertain himself with just a cup. lol

And last….all the frogs the kids caught.

Thanks for reading and watching. I will be posting more of the pics on facebook soon.


Raising Tadpoles

The dishes are done, the laundry is clean, and all the sweet babies are in bed. It’s been a long day and the bottoms of my feet just ache. But FINALLY…I get to sit down and relax (hope I didn’t just jinx myself). I’m lounging on the couch on the front porch, enjoying the cool breeze.

There is a large plastic container sitting on my counter (the one where we end up collecting all the junk; purse, bills, etc. It would make a great kitchen bar if we could just knock out part of the wall). The braided pretzel label on the container has been wet and is wrinkly and trying to peel itself off. This is our makeshift tadpole home. It is equipped with a nice large rock, courtesy of the Mississippi River, and 4 tiny tadpoles, courtesy of my mom’s co-worker. Bright green pond scum floats lazily in the murky water and clings to the edges of the rock. Tadpoles dart around the edges, as if they are racing. You can see their tiny little frog legs right by their tiny tadpole tails. 

Directions for taking care of these babies are handwritten on a scrap of paper and scotch taped to the sides, along with the lid.

Keep in shade. Needs a rock to get out of water (check). Do not feed. They eat their tails. Rain/distilled water. Keep water clean (need to do that).

Now we will just keep our fingers crossed they live and we get to see them turn into frogs or toads.

I will keep it updated.


Below are a few misc. pics of the day and a video. The boys had a blast cleaning the rocks, but of course! It deals with water. 🙂

Happenings in the Backyard…

A lot has been happening in our backyard lately. Besides the baby bunnies, which you can read about in the previous post, we have 3 bird’s nests. One I’m pretty sure is empty, the second I can’t see because it is in a ledge, but I see the momma sparrow coming and going and I can hear the little chirps, and the third is actually in a light fixture on the side of my neighbor’s house. Every time I do the dishes or sit on the back porch I can see the momma robin feed her babies. It is so cute to see the little beaks stretched out and open, waiting for their momma to feed the four babies. That is kinda how I feel sometimes, three little babies lined up with mouths open waiting to be fed. And I go down the line, spooning food into each little mouth. (One is actually Collin, he thinks he needs to be fed along with the babies.)

I have been watching this bird’s nest for the last couple weeks now. It is amazing how fast they are growing.

The babies are out of the nest now. This morning I was sitting on my porch and I watched the momma Robin pecking for worms with one of her baby’s by her side.  When she flew off he wasn’t able to make it over the fence. I got a cute pic.

Amazing how much you can see and learn just in the backyard!

We also had a baby sparrow in the yard. I made the kids come in from playing ball until he figured out how to fly away, which seemed to be all afternoon.

I tried to peek at the bunny nest yesterday, but it is covered with fur and I couldn’t see anything. Maybe soon there will be floppy ears peeking out from their little nest.

It’s a jungle out there!


Our Day Without Electricity and Babies in the Backyard

I vaguely remember Brad waking me up around 5 something this morning. “The electricity is out,” he said. I mumbled something, heard the wind whipping the windows, and then closed my eyes against the bright lightning flashes and tried to go back to sleep. Notice I said tried, because it wasn’t but ten minutes later I felt someone grab my foot. Collin. This kid keeps waking up earlier and earlier every morning. I just want to sleep until 6 am…not happening anytime soon. Oh well.

So today we had to entertain ourselves. The house is so eery and quiet without background noise, fridge running (which you never notice until it is gone) and the usual household noises, tv in the background, etc. The kids and I made plenty of noise to fill up the empty space. We cleaned out the toy boxes upstairs and downstairs. This took a good portion of the morning, considering I had to keep reminding Bradley, “You never play with this. If you get rid of some toys then it makes room for new ones.” He kept picking Collin’s toys to get rid of. lol. We did manage to get rid of three good size boxes.

We played board games, read books, listened to “Coraline” on my Kindle, played with toys and messed up the toy room again, splashed in the puddles on the sidewalk. We also played Cash Cab on Taigyn’s iPod (we suck, by the way). My mom brought over McDonald’s for lunch. Thanks again, MOm!

It was a strange day, but lots of fun. We did not have contact with the outside world hardly at all. No Internet and my cell phone went dead, and we had to use Taigyn’s cell sparingly because his was just about dead too. It was a blast. Plenty of good quality family time. And I even won at Sorry.

By the afternoon, around 2 or so, this no electricity thing was starting to get old. And then I started worrying if it would come on today, because I really didn’t feel like sitting in the dark. I was also wondering what food in the fridge and freezer would still be good (it’s not that full, so if we did loose stuff, it wouldn’t be much). Luckily, Brad ordered us a pizza to be delivered, so I didn’t have to worry about dinner. Thanks again, hunny!

Kinda nice to play all day, and have lunch AND dinner delivered. We may not have had the basics, like electricity and the Internet :), but we were spoiled.

The power finally came on a little after 4.


It has been an interesting evening, too. I was sitting on the back porch and about jumped out of my skin. A rabbit appeared out of nowhere and sat right in front of me for several minutes, not moving, just staring up at me with those black marble eyes. I kept thinking, what the heck is wrong with the rabbit, he didn’t run, he looked kinda  mangled, and it had a goatee. I kept wondering if it was going to attack me or maybe it had rabies. I yelled for someone to get my camera, then it finally took off. Phew, didn’t get attacked by the goatee bunny. I did manage to get a few pics. It didn’t run far.

Goatee bunny

Poor mangled bunny. It looked like it didn’t make it through the storm to well.

It was strange after dinner. The air was cool and the air seemed to have an  other-worldly feel to it. And there were at least five or more rabbits grazing in the backyard. I kept expecting Bambi to join them. Below is another pic of one of our other bunny visitors.

The goatee bunny was still hanging out in what used to be the garden, but now is a mess of weeds, creeping charlie, and marigolds that came up on their own. All the other bunnies high tail it through little holes in the fence. But not the goatee bunny. I went to reach for a ball that was in the weeds and found her nest! I almost stepped on it. It’s kinda graphic, considering there is a dead bunny that was brutally pulled from the nest and somehow killed. So I guess the goatee bunny is a mommy bunny…I wonder if that fur hanging below her mouth is from eating something? Ewwww…  I guess that is nature.

So I was really tempted to move the poor thing out of the nest and my yard. But I decided against it because I don’t want a bunch of dead baby bunnies. So then I started feeling bad for the momma bunny. Here we are, following her around in the yard, taking pictures. So I have left it alone and will make sure the dog doesn’t discover the nest. I will take a peek in a couple days though.

It has been an interesting and fun day. Below is a video of Collin looking at the bunny. He keeps trying to say “bunny” but it just come out “bu” or “bir.”

And yes, I do dress my kids. But Collin loves loves loves to run around in his diaper. And he always always always takes off his shoes, no matter where we are at. At least he puts them away neatly, even under the dentist office chair. lol.

Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to enjoy nature, even if it is only in your backyard. 🙂