Monday, March 30, 2009

Dear Jesus.....Amen, and Chocolate

Owen is our quiet one in the bunch. (By quiet I don't mean he doesn't make noise!) Though he can say some words, he generally chooses to communicate by pointing and grunting, and sometimes squealing. He is what you would call a man of few words. I often wonder if this is due to the fact that with his brothers, he has neither need nor space to talk. The other day he saw me pull some chocolate pudding out of the pantry to give to his brother. His face lit up, and he said, "Chocolate". Owen has a real sweet tooth (because he is a really sweet boy), and nothing makes his face light up with smiles like chocolate does. We think he is a "choc"aholic.
This weekend we noticed that he was trying to pray along with his brothers at the table. He started with his precious pronunciation of "Dear Jesus", followed by some mumblings. This morning, he did the same, and he finished off his brother's prayer with a sweet "Amen".
There's nothing sweeter than the sound of your child's voice...nothing more precious than hearing your child talk to Jesus....and few things more pride enducing than chocolate being one of your child's first words. It is a 3 syllable word after all!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Interview with the Kids

Interview with the kids

I saw this on Facebook and thought it was really cute. I did it with the boys, and got a good chuckle. I thought I'd post it on my blog for those family members and friends that aren't on Facebook.

Evan - 5
Carter - 2 1/2 (lost interest after the 14th question)
(Derek wasn't interested in the interrogation)

1. What is something mom always says to you?
E - You're a little peanut.
C- I love you.

2. What makes mom happy?
E - getting flowers from me and the kids (love how he exempted himself from the kids)
C - obey

3. What makes mom sad?
E - when no one hugs her
C - that I don't get to wear glasses (think he's confused about the question...he's sad he doesn't get to wear glasses)

4. How does your mom make you laugh?
E - tickling
C- because you tickle me

5. What was your mom like as a child?
E - a girl
C - umm a boy

6. How old is your mom?
E - well, I don't know....hmm...maybe 100!
C - huh...4?

7. How tall is your mom?
E - 22 feet
C - big

8. What is her favorite thing to do?
E - help all of her kids
C- work (boy is he wrong on that one!)

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?
E - take care of my brothers
C - don't pick up (really?)

10.If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
E - taking care of us
C - be handsome

11. What is your mom really good at?
E - doing the computer and driving (I always wondered what my talents were, now I know I don't have any!)
C- chasing me

12. What is your mom not good at?
E - baseball
C - I not know

13.what does your mom do for a job?
E - plant vegetables and work at Old Navy (we planted vegetables once, and I work a few evenings at ON....wonder what he thinks I do the rest of the time?)
C - play

14.What is your mom's favorite food?
E - maybe chicken?
C - supper

15.What makes you proud of your mom?
E - when she does stuff for me and when she makes supper

16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would she be?
E - Lightning McQueen, because I like Lightning McQueen

17. What do you and your mom do together?
E - work as a team with planting vegetables

18. How are you and your mom the same?
E - we get hands the same (we both get really dry cracking skin on our hands in the winter)

19. How are you and your mom different?
E - we have different color eyes

20. How do you know your mom loves you?
E - because she's the best mommy ever and because she helps me get toys off of the shelf

21. What does your mom like most about your dad?
E - his beautiful brown eyes

22. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?
E - is it....Target?

Friday, March 20, 2009

Recipe for Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

Okay, well, I've had a few requests for this recipe after I shared the photos of it the other day. So here it is, and enjoy!

Warning: This is not fat free, calorie free, or guilt free. But it sure is good!

2 16oz. containers of fresh strawberries

3 T. sugar

2 8oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened

1 1/2 c. cold milk

1 pkg. vanilla instant pudding

1 8oz. container whipped topping

1 frozen pound cake, cut into 1 in cubes

1 container of Bakers melting chocolate for dipping

Slice up enough strawberries to measure 3 cups. Set remaining berries aside. Combine sliced berries and sugar. Refrigerate until ready to use. Beat the cream cheese with mixer until creamy. Gradually beat in milk.

Add pudding mix; mix well.

Blend in 1 1/2 c whipped topping. Spoon half into trifle bowl.

Top with 2 c. of cake cubes, the sliced berries, and the remaining cream cheese mixture. Refrigerate.

Melt chocolate according to instructions on container; drizzle some over dessert. Top with remaining whipped topping.

Dip remaining whole strawberries in chocolate, place on wax paper and refrigerate. Cover top of trifle with chocolate covered strawberries.


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

God Is So Good To Me

Tonight as I was tucking Evan into bed, I skipped over the story he wanted and told him I would sing him just one song; it was late and past his bedtime after all. I sang "God is So Good". Of course, after I finished he complained that the song was too short. So, I sang another verse. Then we talked about how God had been good to us today...what good things He had given us to enjoy...

We mentioned the everyday goodness He gives us...3 full meals, our family, playtime, etc. We then listed the special blessings of today.
It was a beautiful sunshiney day here today....
we got to see our neighbor and her little boys...
Evan and his brothers got to go on a walk with Daddy while I went to an appointment...
the boys got to play outside in the melting snow and the mud...
I rented "Horton Hears a Who" (Love those Red Box movie rentals....economical and convenient!) and we watched it together as a family....
we had a yummy supper of Chicken Enchiladas (Evan had 3 helpings. I don't know how he keeps his stick figure!)...
we tried a new dessert that everyone loved......

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle. Chocolate AND strawberries.....quite possibly Evan's 2 favorite things in the whole world! It also contains cheesecake and pudding....they come quite high on his list, too.

While Evan was eating his dessert this is what I heard: "Mom, you make the best suppers AND the best desserts"..."This is delicious"...."This is so delicious"... "Yuuuummmmm".

We both agreed it had been a very good day. So, instead of filling his head with a story, I told him to close his eyes and dream of all the good things that could happen tomorrow. Tomorrow hasn't started yet, and it is full of possibility. He thought that was a good idea. Then he said that being really kind to his brothers would be a good thing in the morning. I agreed.
And then as I tucked the blankets back in close and leaned over to kiss him, I said, "And you know how I know God is so good?" As I placed a kiss on his soft cheek, I whispered, "He gave you to me."
Evan smiled and the look in his eyes told me, that is what he most wanted to hear. Today has been a very good day. And God is SO good to me.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Signs of Spring

I attempted to help my boys make a snowman today. I realized as I looked out at our dwindling piles of snow, that we hadn't yet made one this season. What a terrible mother I must be, I thought. So I bundled the boys up and out we went all excited. Then, we discovered that we don't have snow...we have tiny little chunks of ice. There was no way we could build a real snowman. Evan and I worked at it, and came up with a pile of the "snow" and figured that it could at least be his head. I looked at this sad excuse for a snowman, who looks like he's melting into the ground, and realized this is an excellent sign of coming spring. Soon this snow will all be gone and we'll be welcoming green grass, flowers, and blossoming trees. I love spring. I've been looking forward to it all winter. Evan on the other hand was nearly in tears....he wanted to make a "snow-moose".

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Life From a Different View

Today, Evan got his new glasses. It was upsetting for me to hear the news that something was wrong with my sweet boys eyes. These beautiful brown eyes (they look like sliced black olives!) and the gorgeous long eyelashes. I've loved looking at these precious eyes for the last 5 years, watching them light up with the simple joys of everyday, the little things I would overlook, but that were highlights and joys to him. I watched as these eyes turned from a beautiful deep blue to a brown. I cried when he fell at 15 months and cut his eyebrow open and had stitches (he's got a cool scar now). I've always thought he could see just fine.... he seems to be able to see a Dunkin Donuts or McDonalds a mile away. One of his eyes is 20/20, and so he was seeing just fine with them both, but we discovered that his left eye is not doing it's job. As a mom, you want your kid to be perfect in health. You hope they will have as few challenges in life as possible. The funny thing is that while I was sad to hear the doctor say my boy needed glasses, I looked over and saw those same beautiful eyes light up with a smile. He's not upset, he's not feeling bad about himself. He's thrilled. He thinks he looks cute....and he sure is. He is seeing life from a different view than I he's seeing it with a clearer view. I hope I can see life the way he does. Finding the joy in the things I would normally consider negative. Children have a way of finding the positive in things, the silver lining, as they say. I'm not going to reflect my sadness or fears onto him. I'm just going to enjoy the new view.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ever Have One of These Days?

Have you ever had one of these underwear on your head kind of day? I'm having one of those days, today (not literally!)... just feeling generally icky and tired and wanting to just curl up and sleep, and with it a bad hair day.

This picture of "O-man" was taken last week, but couldn't help but share it. For some reason, he has an infatuation with underwear, and when I am folding laundry, he finds them in the pile and sticks them on his head. Strange habit....but an adorable boy!

Enjoy your day, even if it is one of these days! At least maybe this precious face will make you smile. It always has that effect on me.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Kindness of a Stranger

Today was...well, one of those days. Our schedules demanded that today I go grocery shopping with all the boys by myself. While we regulary run errands together, I generally try to avoid this when grocery shopping and go at night while the boys hang out at home with Daddy. Needless to say trying to shop at 3 different stores while pushing a double stroller or cart, and pulling another cart, keeping a 5 year old in tow and 3 toddlers happy while confined, and making potty breaks and changing diapers....all while trying to shop, find the best bargains, follow a list, and match up coupons.....well, it's just not as easy as it sounds. :-) At our last stop, an older lady stopped me in an aisle and was asking questions about the boys. This is also one of the reasons shopping takes so long. It seems everyone needs to stop and tell me that I have my hands full (a pet peeve of mine, actually, but I digress), or to ask me if I have twins or triplets, and to tell me stories about someone they know who has twins, or to tell me about their grandchild, etc. While I love talking about my kids, it can get a little distracting and frustrating. I'd love to go in a store just once with the boys, and not feel like everyone was noticing our "circus train." This lady was very nice though, and after talking to the boys and commenting on their adorableness, we went our separate ways in the store. While we were cashing out, she came over to me from the next register and handed me a bunch of daffodils she had just had her cashier ring up. Naturally, I was taken back. This lady who didn't know me, but who remembered what it is like to be a busy and some times stressed mom, wanted to give me a little something to brighten my day. It worked. I brought them home and put them in a vase on my kitchen window sill. I'm thankful for the kindness of a stranger today.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Our newest family member, Nemo. He is a promised gift to Evan when he finished potty training. (We are quite late in delivering on our promise.) Evan loves his new friend. He thoughtfully said to me, "Mom, having a fish is a big responsibility." He watches his every move and gets all excited...."Mom, he's swimming....Mom, he's eating....Mom, he's sitting on the rocks." Boy, we have an exciting house. Here's to Nemo, the life of the party.

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Hard to believe our oldest child can possibly be 5 years old already. It sounds like a cliche when your baby is tiny, and you are nursing and changing diapers all day, when people tell you that it all goes by too fast. And then you take your little guy to get his portrait taken, and you look at his picture, and suddenly realize your looking at a big boy, not a baby. I miss those days when Evan was a snuggling baby in my arms, but I am so proud of the big boy he has become. He has a tender heart, a sweet spirit, and loves to love people. I am privileged to be his mommy, and I am looking forward to seeing the man he will become......but let's not rush that!

Our Family Christmas Portrait 2008

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As you can see, getting 4 little boys to look at the camera and smile is nearly impossible! But they are awfully cute, aren't they?