Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Highlights

We are smack in the middle of moving this week so I don't have much time on my hands. Right now we are working on getting things ready to go in the old house while the kids are sleeping. We are moving next week! I wanted to post some pictures of this past week. We had a blast with all our family and really enjoyed the visit from Santa. Hope everyone had a great Christmas!

We took our first ride in a golf cart ...

We ditched the baby doll and decided to give Luke a test drive in the doll stroller instead.

We celebrated the triplets' real birthday.

We met Mickey and Minnie Mouse!

Luke started crawling, army style.

We put the windows down and let the wind run through our hair ...

... and had some fun at the riverfront park.

We worked on sharing ...

... and tried to sit still for a Christmas Eve picture.

We got a visit from Santa!

And we had a Merry Christmas!

We hope everyone had as much fun this Christmas as we did! Next time we check in, it will be from our new home in Winston Salem, NC!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Happy!

I just wanted to take a minute to wish a Happy Birthday to my triplets, Peyton, Sam, and Adah! They are 2 years old today! Someone asked me if those 2 years seemed long or short. Honestly, it just depends on the day. I can still vividly remember that week in the hospital though and I cannot believe that those tiny 3 pound babies are now running around and talking up a storm. We are so thankful to have each of them in our lives. I'm sure they will be 18 before we know it, so we're enjoying it now, tantrums and all. Bring on those Terrible Two's!

You Know You Live in the Ghetto

As many of you know, we live on a college campus as part of my husband's job. All of this is about to change in a couple of weeks once we move to North Carolina, so I've been feeling a little nostalgic lately. Not only do we live on a college campus, but that campus just happens to be right in the middle of a not-so-nice part of town. Actually, I'll just skip the euphemisms and say it ... we live in the ghetto. Free housing definitely comes with strings attached. Therefore, in the spirit of Jeff Foxworthy's "You know you're a redneck when ..." series, here are my ways for you to know if you live in the ghetto.

You know you live in the ghetto when ...

The builing down the street from your house that just recently served as an animal hospital and then a funeral home is now a no-fault insurance business.

You frequently see helicopters circling your residence at night with their search lights on.

The way the seafood shop down the street advertises the size of their jumbo shrimp is by having an employee stand on the side of the road holding up an actual shrimp as people drive by. I don't know about you, but it's a little hard for me to gauge the size of a shrimp as I'm driving past it at 40 mph.

Your 2 year olds can recognize and instantly discriminate the difference between a police car, ambulance, and fire truck siren.

The local park is located right next door to the ABC liquor store. We have taken to affectionately calling it Liquor Park.

You are surrounded by a plethora of daycare centers, all of which are unable to spell words correctly. For example:
Kidzworld Academy
Kid Konnections
Aaa Academy of Excellence (ok, these people just wanted to be the first listing in the phone book)
Doe Little Dears (I get it, but it's just a little cheesy for me)
Kids Korner

I could go on, but I can hear my peeps giving me a shout out to get off the computer. Hope everyone is having a great holiday season so far. I can't believe Christmas is around the corner!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hairy Goldfish

This is what happens when you leave your sweet, innocent 7 month old alone on the floor and turn your back for a second to atend to your other children ...

Notice the smile on his face. I apparently underestimated his reach and bag opening abilities at this young age. At least he was caught before trying to eat any of the triplets' snack. Sam tried to help out when he saw the mess ...

But he pretty much succeeded in just spreading the goldfish around and crushing a couple of them as well. Once he was finished I had a half-filled bag of goldfish and dog hair, yummy. Needless to say, we had some yogurt for snack today instead.

We finished off the day with Luke's first taste of chicken.

Poor guy, he just had a rough food day in all respects. Don't worry, he finished off the meal with some pears and was a happy camper when he got in the tub (which, as you can tell by the pictures, happened immediately after his dinner). I hope everyone else had a better dining experience than we did today.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

So Much To Do, So Little Time

What's a family of six to do on a weekend when they are less than three weeks from moving to a new state? Pack? Organize? Rest? All rational answers to this question, but our family seems to find a way of making simple things difficult. No, we defied logic and instead of being sensible we decided to celebrate a graduation, birthday, and baptism all in one weekend. This seemed trivial when it was planned a few months ago, but that was when we were unaware we would be moving during this month as well. But, as they say, the show must go on.

We started the weekend off with Matt's graduation from his doctoral program! It was great to have our families there to celebrate all his hard work and commitment to his degree over the last four and a half years. We all managed to get to the ceremony on time to find seats, and I was especially excited because we seemed to have picked a good location for photos. I was planning on getting some good shots of the whole ceremony. Little did I know that this guy would show up ...

This, my friends, was the one-man picture police sent to wreak havoc upon all those adoring families of the graduates. He spent the better part of the afternoon patrolling up and down the aisles making sure no one was able to get a good picture of their graduate. This man must have walked at least 4 miles over the course of the afternoon by pacing up and down to lecture the rules violators who would (gasp!) try and get down closer to take a picture of their student. I don't know what type of vendetta he had against photography, but he seriously dampened the mood of the flashbulb happy crowd.

Being that the picture police limited my picture taking during the ceremony, I had to settle for most pictures being taken afterward. Here we are after the ceremony.

In case you were wondering, the triplets did not come to the ceremony. We were going to try and bring them, but when we realized that the ceremony was occurring during their naptime after a busy day at preschool, our sensible parenting minds took over and they stayed home. Once we saw the set-up and the length of the ceremony, it turned out to be a wise choice. They all celebrated with Daddy when he got home by taking turns wearing his doctoral tam.

Saturday was Birthday! The triplets don't turn 2 until a little later this month, but we decided to celebrate a little early since so many family members were in town. Nonni and Grandad hosted and it was so much fun. It was pouring, but luckily the bouncy house we had fit on the porch. The kids had a blast jumping and playing with balloons.

As always, the highlight of the day was the presents! Thanks to everyone for all the great gifts. However, as is always the case, everyone gravitated towards one favorite gift. Sam was in love with his "pire truck."

Adah, our reader, couldn't read through all the new book fast enough.

Peyton was in love with her "coloring." In actuality, it was a mangna doodle.

Luke and Daddy had fun at the party too. Luke entertained everyone with his dance moves and rocking skills. He is going to be crawling sooner than I would like.

The cake was also a huge success. Although the kids didn't get to dive into the cake head first like last year, they still found a way to make a mess. Sam and Adah pulled the figurines off of the cake and gave themselves a lovely makeover of blue lipstick.

Apparently I need to work some more with Adah on her make-up application skills.

We had such a wonderful time at the party and thanks again to everyone for the gifts. Afterward, we hung out at our house. Aunt Meghann and Uncle John got some good cuddle time with the triplets. I think John only had to read "Where Is Baby's Belly Button?" about 56 times this weekend.

Sunday was the finale, Luke's baptism. This was bittersweet because it was one of the last times we would be attending our church before we move. We LOVE our church and have made so many great friends there. They have been praying for us through both pregnancies and I cannot articulate how important all the people there have been to us. For this reason, we really wanted to have Luke baptized here before we moved. Everything went well and Luke really seemed to enjoy his water bath.

Everyone had to drive home after the ceremony and we spent the better part of the afternoon trying to recuperate. The house is still a mess and I have still not packed a box, but it was worth it. I know I'll be paying for it in the upcoming weeks, but a fun weekend with family was a good trade-off. The kids had a great time too. They can't wait to see everyone again. Here's a cute picture I took of the kids recently that sums up my feelings about the weekend.

I know I'm partial, but this is one of the sweetest things I have even seen. These are the times I am glad I keep my camera close by. I'm now off to make endless lists of all the things I need to do in the upcoming weeks. If anyone has advice on how to fit moving into the holiday season, I will gladly welcome any tips!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Back Home

Well, we all arrived back in one piece after this past weekend. We were at a family wedding and had our first experience staying at a hotel with the triplets. We all ended up sleeping together in the same room, which was an adventure. Actually, I don't think the crew ever caught on to the fact that we were there in the same room with them. Good thing we only stayed a couple of days or they may have started to figure it out! We had a great time hanging out with family and we're looking forward to seeing everyone again soon.

The kids loved the balcony. I think they spent a majority of their time out there. Peyton loved looking at the pool.

We headed down to the beach to explore. Adah turned a beach chair into her own personal trampoline.

Sam checked out the waves.

The girls loved looking through the shells we collected on the beach.

And Bogey taught them a great new game ...

 We had a great time!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Mr. Minivan

I'm going to be brutally honest here. When we went to our first ultrasound and the doctor said, "triplets," I had a distinct image pop into my mind. No, it wasn't visions of three bouncing babies crawling around the room, the sleepless nights of feedings or changing all those diapers. No my friends, sadly, this is the very first thing that entered my thoughts ...

The dreaded minivan. This is the last thing any girl in her twenties wants to call her own. Your car is symbolic of your personlity, and there are so many different makes and models out there that you can always find something to fit the image you want to portray. Want to be seen as sporadic and sassy? Drive a Mustang. Want to highlight your quirks and individuality? Drive a MINI Cooper or a Volkswagen Beetle. Concerned others don't see you as practical? Switch to any of the sedans on the market. And then there's the minivan. That poor, poor minivan. It screams, "Please take me out of my 'uncool' misery!" or "How many kids can you cram in me today?" I tried ... Lord knows I tried ... to think of any other suitable car options for someone with triplets. But despite my valiant efforts, the practicality of the minivan won out and one day I found myself driving one off of the car lot and waving goodbye to my youth for good.

I moped around for a few months and made faces of disgust at Mr. Minivan whenever I caught a glimpse of him out my front window. He would just sit there and wink back with his power sliding doors that promised oh-so-much convenience to a triplet mom. I shunned his advances (even though the power doors WERE very helpful) and played hard to get, as most girls do. No way was this minivan going to win me over with some fancy electronics and multitudes of cup holders. No sir, I wasn't going to budge until he showed me something that I couldn't get anywhere else.

And then the magic happened. It wasn't just one thing, it was a combination that hit me cold and hard in the face one day as I was driving. We were taking a longer trip and I had just switched on the Elmo DVD to keep the kids entertained. As I looked in my rear view mirror and saw them all snacking happily in their car seats, drinks placed neatly in their perfectly placed individual cup holders while I turned up the DVD with the volume controls located on the steering wheel, I had a moment of revelation. So Mr. Minivan wasn't cool to look at and didn't scream, "look at me, I've still got it!" I couldn't put his top down and let the sun shine on my shoulders while I drove around listening to the latest top 40 hits. But he did offer me leather seats, a 6 CD disc changer, a DVD player, climate control and cup holders as far as the eye could see. And you know what? That's all this girl really needed to be happy. So I proceeded to roll down the windows and the kids and I sang "Rubber Ducky" at the top of our lungs with the wind blowing through our hair as we drove down the highway. From that day on Mr. Minivan and I have had an inseparable partnership that no one will ever be able to understand or duplicate. Sure, I still look at all those fancy, cool cars, but, in the end, Mr. Minivan and I know where my heart truly lies.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Sing Along

Can you tell I just unloaded our video camera? Here are a couple highlights from Peyton, our singer. The first one is for Uncle John and all you Gator fans out there.

The next one is for anyone who loves their ABCs or "twinkle stars", as Peyton says. Note her holding out that last note on "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" ... I knew those voice lessons were paying off.

Road Trip

We're heading to a family wedding this weekend and I must admit that I am a little scared. We have never stayed in a hotel with the kids, so it could be interesting. I'm wondering if we can request to be on an empty floor so we won't bother anyone. Our kids have an affinity for waking each other up with high-pitched squeals in the morning. They think it's hilarious, but I don't think a floor full of hotel guests would agree.

Finding a place to actually accommodate all of us for this wedding was a bit of a challenge. We couldn't fit all 5 of us (Luke is staying home with Nonni ... smart man) into one room, especially since everyone is still in a crib. So we had to be sure to find a hotel with a suite-style set-up. I also felt bad asking for 3 hotel cribs in the room because I thought we would be hogging their entire supply. So we will be hauling 3 pack and plays down to the wedding for the triplets to sleep in. This is why we don't go to restaurants that much either. It's hard enough to find 3 open high chairs at a restaurant and then if you do, you have to endure all the glares from other parents as you greedily scoot 3 of those precious chairs up to your table. In actuality, we can only go to restaurants that have many available high chairs AND round tables. The round table is necessary because it is the only table you can fit 3 high chairs, a baby seat, and 2 adults around comfortably. So that pretty much narrows our restaurant choices down to three. So much for variety.

We'll give you the update on how everything goes once we return, hopefully in one piece. I will consider it a success if no one gets injured and we get at least 6 hours of sleep each night. Am I being too optimistic? Here's what Luke had to say when we asked him that same question.

Like I said, he's a smart man.