11 Things That Happen Every Day at Our House

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  1. Winston will have to poop as soon as he hears someone else say they have to go. Guaranteed.
  2. Ian will change clothes multiple times. It was really bad a couple of years ago; He and Lewis would put on a costume and within 3 minutes decide to be a different character.
  3. Winston waits for me to go upstairs and raids my purse for gum. The best part is when he hears me coming back downstairs, he meets me at the den door waving and saying, “Hey Mommy!”
  4. Miles will fight his afternoon nap with everything he has. He will hold out as long as he can, sleep 20 minutes, and be almost unbearable for the rest of the day. I will NOT miss this part of the baby stage.
  5. Lewis asks for an oatmeal pie. I am addicted as well.
  6. Every night I think about how I can be a better Mom.
  7. I will pick up toys and clothes off the floor 50 times a day. My OCD takes over.
  8. Ian eats a ham and cheese sandwich. He would probably eat it for breakfast if I offered to make one.
  9. We eat dinner at the table together. We talk about our day. If you watch Seinfeld, you should be laughing.
  10. Jarred acts as a human gymnasium. They jump, hang, and climb all over him. He’s awesome.
  11. I make sure I tell the boys they should never be afraid to tell me anything or ask me anything. It’s working so far, hopefully it’ll stick with them. 

 

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Ashley

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Good Start

Some people might have thought I was crying from the insanely boring music blasting at Mapco, but I wasn’t. I was thinking about Lewis, Ian, and Winston being in school. That’s right, 3 of my children are now in school.

Ian started Pre-K and Winston started Pre-School. Ian has a rough time trying new things and being around new people. He’s become very anxious over the last few years. We decided to let him stay home with me last year instead of going to Pre-School, because I needed some help with Winston and Miles. Even though he had an AMAZING teacher, Ian had a little bit of a rough year when he was in the 3-year-old class, so it was an easy decision to let him stay home the following year. He was such a big helper! Those first 6 months with Miles were difficult. I wouldn’t have made it without his help.

He was so excited about going to school this morning. He started counting down a couple of months ago. He gets excited about a lot of things, but usually shells up when it’s time to do them. We signed him up for swim lessons over the summer, got there and he was hysterical.  He wasn’t afraid of the water; he was afraid because he didn’t know anyone. The child was pitiful! He freaked out so bad the last time we went to the dentist for a cleaning, they had to put him in the smaller room so he wouldn’t scare the other kids. He’s never had a cavity, so it’s always easy breezy when we go. The same hygienist has cleaned his teeth since he started going 3 years ago. I was a nervous wreck. For some reason I get really anxious when my kids start crying when we are out in public, especially if it’s the baby. I hate that about myself. I act as though no one has ever heard a baby cry. Don’t get it wrong, there’s a difference in a baby crying and a 5-year-old crying and kicking in the floor at Target because they can’t have a toy.  I have no tolerance for that. But I digress…

Ian went into his classroom this morning, picked out a place to sit and started coloring. Those pretty blue eyes looked up and he said, “Bye Mommy and Daddy.” I wanted to cry not only because I would miss him, but I was so proud of him! I was expecting the worst and that makes me feel bad. I knew he could do it, but I worried it’d be like all the other times and he would let his anxiety take over. He was doing it! He was proud of himself and I could see it in his eyes.

Sometimes I get offended when I hear Moms brag about homeschooling their children. I won’t go into all the comments I’ve heard, but I am sure you’ve heard them also. I like to hear my children talk about school. They love meeting new friends, playing with friends at recess, and I love hearing about their day. I have time to get a few things done and they get time to learn they can have fun and do things without me being there with them. They learn to be self-confident. They learn to trust other people.

Today I had some sweet one-on-one time with Miles and that’s always fun. It’s rare. I found myself wondering if Winston was crying and hoping Ian was okay. Winston’s teacher sent me a picture of him and his classmates eating snacks and he looked like such a big boy. I walked into his classroom and he ran up to me with his arms up in the air. We walked around and went into Ian’s classroom and he did the same. They were happy to see me and Miles and we were surely happy to see them!

I have a sweet friend that brought Lewis home from school last year after Miles was born. I am very thankful for her, but I missed picking Lewis up and hearing about his day as soon as he got in the car. I missed watching him stand with the teacher and smile as I pulled up to get him. I started picking him up again yesterday and I loved it. It made me feel good.

I can’t slow down time, but I need to learn how to slow down and appreciate these precious moments.

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Ashley

My Last Teething Baby

Miles is teething. That three-word sentence is enough for moms to know what I am going through. If you have an older child, you understand my pain. If you have a baby that hasn’t started teething yet, shit is about to get real.

We had just started to enjoy Winston sleeping through the night when we found out I was pregnant with Miles. One of my first thoughts after hearing the surprising news of being pregnant for the fourth time, teeettthhhinng!!

Last night we put Miles down for bed at 6:45pm. Thirty minutes later, he was fussing. Jarred rocked him back to sleep. We have a look that we give each other after we come downstairs from rocking Miles. It’s a “we might be okay” face, or “we’re screwed” face.  I got the “we’re screwed” face.

At 9:00pm, he woke up crying. I nursed him back to sleep. 9:45pm, he woke up crying again. As if we needed anyone else to join in, I started crying. He finally slept until 1:00am. He woke again at 3:30am, and around 6:00am. Jarred was up for work already, so thankfully he took over and let me sleep for a few extra minutes.

I am in desperate need of a night where he wakes up for his normal 10:00pm and 3:00am feedings, and I can nurse him back to sleep by humming and cuddling him.

I can’t wait until I can come back downstairs and give Jarred the “we might be okay” face.

Maybe it will happen tonight? If not, I’ll be chanting my mantra.

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Ashley

 

The Background Story

My Boys

Lewis is 6. Almost 7, his birthday is next month and he reminds us every chance he gets. He is smart, compassionate, inquisitive, and lives as a Star Wars character or Super Hero every minute he is not in school. He even goes to the grocery store in full character. I’ve learned to choose my battles and what he wears in public is not one of them.

Ian is 5. He has a smile that will melt your heart. Seriously, it is amazing. He is a tender-hearted, shy, sweet, and sensitive boy that rarely sleeps past 5:30am and he hates naps. He is obsessed with Thomas the Train. Unfortunate for him sometimes, he is the second child. This means he goes along with whatever Lewis decides to do. We’re working on his leadership skills.

Winston, oh my energetic Winston is 2. He wakes up ready to play. He is bubbly, funny, and ALL boy. My fearless toddler will try to do anything that he sees his big brothers do. He calls them Fugi and E. He loves motorcycles and mint Oreos. He is a Daddy’s boy and his Daddy is quite okay with that. Winston is starting Pre-School this year, which will be interesting for me and his teachers. I will miss seeing that sweet little face while he is at school.

Miles is 8 months old. He is such a happy baby. It could be my blurred memory from birthing 4 children, but I don’t remember any of my others boys being so happy, so content. Miles will smile at anyone or anything. He is a tough boy; both he and Lewis were born with bilateral clubfeet. He went through serial castings for a few months and followed up with the heel-lengthening surgery. Now he wears his bar-and-shoes to maintain alignment. The shoes haven’t slowed him down. He gets around quick!

Every day I think to myself, I can’t believe we have 4 boys! It has been awesome. Difficult at times, but awesome! I’m 30 years old. I’ve had random strands of gray hair for a few years. It takes me a minute to stand up straight after sitting on the floor. I have to write everything down or I will forget within minutes. There are some days when I am counting down to bedtime. On the other hand, there are days that I wish wouldn’t end because everyone is in such a good mood and I want it to last as long as it can. There are days that everyone is so sweet and patient with each other. Those are my favorite. They let me know we are doing something right.

Thankfully, today was a good day.

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 Ashley