Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tattle Tale.....

The other day as I was washing dishes, Nevin came running up the hallway with a very concerned/mad look on his face. Then he told me in his best 2 year-old "I'm telling on you" voice..... "Mo-om, Taelyn did dit. No-nan piddy!". He was down-right disgusted!

I turned around just in time to see Nolan walking up the hallway in Taelyn's light blue sweater, blue flowery skirt and Hannah Montana flip flops. It was clear, Nolan thought he looked G.O.O.D.!!!

Shame on Taelyn, she DID do it. She made Nolan "piddy" aka "pretty".

Friday, January 23, 2009

Happy 36th Birthday Dave!

36 Random Things that I Love About My Husband

He watches our kids without complaining. He lets me go out with my girls and shop or just have alone time. He watches them and usually has a good time...including ice cream for breakfast or 11 p.m. bedtimes. He's a softie and the kids know it. ;)

He has really nice legs. I'm not usually a "leg" gal, but I've thought that since the first day I met him!

He puts me and the kids first! He has had his English degree from the U of I at Springfield for the last 10 years. Until last year, he has always worked a warehouse job. He is a very talented writer and enjoys it so much, but he wanted to do what was best at the time for his family. The job was very stressful. We thank God all the time for being so gracious to give him a job writing for the newspaper. It has really changed his life and he enjoys his work now.

He makes me feel beautiful. Always. I can be cleaning and sweatin' and he will tell me how pretty I am. He convinces me that he thinks I am the most gorgeous woman on the face of this earth! He was like that when we met and he is still this way....11 years and 6 children later!

He is such a great listener. He lets me ramble about my whole day! He genuinely listens and gives great advice. If I am frustrated about something, he usually makes me feel so much better!

He supports me 100% in whatever I do. Whether it's scrap booking, dieting, or even new ideas for raising our children. He never questions me and always offers to help in anyway that he can!

He loves his family. Not talking about me and the kids this time, but his parents and his sisters. He genuinely loves them and wants to take care of them, even if it would mean putting himself last.

Dave and his mama (May 2008)

He is a "glass half-full" type of guy. Never negative.

He has a good head. Literally. When he decided to shave his head, we both worried about it being "lumpy"! NOPE! Nice and round.

He is willing to grow as a Christian. I feel like we are in the same boat on this one. We are both a "work in progress" and love to talk with each other about things that encourage us in our walk with Christ.

He is nurturing. One example....He goes around to the kids' rooms and covers them up every night before we go to bed. If they look uncomfortable he moves them around. He always makes a point to do this.

He's a very gentle person. He hugs and kisses on me all the time. Every night when we lay down to go to sleep, he will lightly rub my back or arm until I fall asleep. He loves to cuddle the kids and love on them. He especially likes to snuggle up with them and fall asleep.

He has "Kacy songs"...aka songs that he hears that make him think of me...usually sweet songs about being in love. He will say..."Oh, I love this song....it's a 'Kacy song'!".

He is social! My friends and family all love him and get along with him. I love that he can meet someone and strike up a conversation and have a good time instantly.

He likes my cooking! He is always up for trying new recipes and he is always grateful for our meals. He will always remind the kids that "mommy is a great cook". How sweet!

He is 110% dedicated to this marriage and family! It's his life. Period.

He doesn't have a mean bone in his body. He is so "not judging" of other people. Unless they have really done him wrong, he will have NOTHING bad to say about anyone. He can't hold a grudge at all either!

He does the dishes. NOT ONLY does he do the dishes, he changes poopy diapers, cleans, makes lunch, feeds babies.....he is never one to shy away from the "dirty work". He is TOTALLY involved and splits the work with me. He has never been the type to come home from work and lay around on the couch all evening.

He's putting some meat on his bones. Not much, but a little. There's a little bit more to hug now. Going from a highly physical job to a desk job will do that. We are thankful for this job change!

He PLAYS with the kids. And I mean "down on the floor, getting into it", playing....GI Joes, doll house, coloring, video games, beauty parlor. Seriously...he has had some good make-overs! Ha!

Dave playing with the kiddos on the trampoline (August 2008)

He has a perfect goatee. It is one of my favorite physical features about him. I just think he is so handsome. He knows I LOVE the goatee, so it doesn't get shaved off. =)

He has to be the one to lock the house up when we go to bed or leave. Not me. He will go in and DOUBLE check to make sure it is locked. It shows that he is protective and feels responsible for making sure we are safe. It's cute...sometimes frustrating, but most of the time, cute!

He is a true gentlemen. He opens doors for me and others. He always goes around my side of the van when we are on a date and lets me in first. When we go out to eat or to the store, he always offers to drop me off at the door. He's always polite.

For the last ten years, he kisses me every time he leaves and every night when we go to bed. He never misses. Never.

He loves it when I am pregnant. (good thing, huh?) He always "eww's and aww's" over how I am so beautiful when I am pregnant. If we are out, and we see a pregnant woman and I am NOT currently pregnant, he'll say things like "I can't wait to give you "over the belly" kisses again!" or "I love when you are pregnant and I can fall asleep feeling the baby kick!"

He is self-less. More so than any person I have ever met. He doesn't hardly spend a dime on himself. Occasionally when he does, it's something he REALLY wants, which is usually a CD or GI Joe figure or something. I usually have to talk him into NOT feeling guilty for doing it!

He has a soft spot for babies. If we are at a restaurant and he walks to the bathroom, sometimes he will come back and say "OK....walk to the bathroom, and the second table to the left, there is the cutest little baby. She's got little chubby cheeks and she's all cozy in her car seat. Go look at her." I think it is so cute. This isn't even including how crazy awesome he is with our own kids!

He loves to make me happy. He lets me have my way....MOST of the time. If I want Olive Garden when we go to Champaign, I usually can talk him into it. If I want to paint the living room purple....I could probably have him painting it by noon. But watch out if something that he actually feels strongly about comes up. What he says...GOES. I like that....that he stands up for what he feels is important. Usually it will have something to do with the kids or me. For instance, it I wanted to drive to Champaign by myself at night, he wouldn't be having it! Otherwise, he doesn't sweat the small stuff.

He is not afraid to admit his shortcomings. He is the most open person I have ever known! He is not afraid to admit what he feels he "can't" do or is "not" good at. It's a good thing he's so dang close to perfect!

He is so gentle. Every night for the last ten years, when we lay down to go to sleep, he gently rubs my arm or my side or my back. I LOVE when he does this!

He is NOT a fighter. I am not a fighter either so this works well for us. (I am way more stubborn than I wish I was, but that's another post.) He hates drama. I can honestly count our "arguments" since we have been married on one hand. I know....sounds impossible. Believe it!

He laughs at me. He gets me. I can be a complete dork, and he is always entertained by me! He is so laid back compared to me and we definitely have our differences, but we have almost the same exact sense of humor. We can always make each other laugh. The kids appreciate this about him too. They are totally crazy about their daddy!

He is organized. I love the little things he does...from alphabetizing his Cd's to setting up his "toys" just the right way. And it has to be PERFECT. (He collects G.I. Joes, Star Wars, etc...)

He always lets the kids help. He is the type of Dad that will be trying to work on things for the house and will have a few extra sets of hands right there with him. He doesn't mind that it slows him down. He doesn't mind that he's not using time 100% efficiently. He doesn't mind that he will probably have to "do over" some things. He puts our kids first and lets them learn and have fun.

Nolan and Nevin helping Daddy set up

the Christmas tree (December 2008)

He has got mad musical talent. He can play those drums like nobody's business. He has got an AMAZING voice that I could never hear too often! His mom even had no idea he could sing! It is something that he is in the process of pursuing.

He soaks up information like a SPONGE! I wish I was that way. I will admit that many people would probably say that some of it was "useless information"....but you can have a conversation with him about ANYTHING.

He is dedicated. Not just to me and his family, but to whatever he sets his mind to. He wanted to learn to play guitar last year and started taking lessons. I talked him into teaching me what he would learn each lesson and then I could learn to play guitar as well! Good idea Kacy! That lasted 2 lessons. It was SOOOOO hard. He has stuck with it and has even taught himself SO much!

Thank you Dave for making me that happiest girl on the face of the earth! I appreciate you and everything you do for our big family!

Happy Birthday Daddy-O! You Rock!!!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Before and After Kitchen Pics Part 1

We have come so far since August! We have put blood, sweat, and tears (literally all 3 of those things) into this house and we are so happy with where we are! The kitchen is our main priority and it is coming along quickly! Everything has ran very smoothly so far! We are at the point now where we are having the electricity installed and then we can see some drywall!!! Yay! I wanted to give you an update at the halfway-ish point.

Here's what we started out with.....

Remember this tiny, gross bathroom in the corner of the kitchen....

After some of this.....

And this...

And this.....

(chiseling the wall till our fingers were numb...dern tile!)

And a whole lotta this.....

We are finally getting somewhere!!!

We, of course, hired a professional to put it back together! We do great at the demolition, but we want things to be done just right. Thanks to Devin for loaning out her husband to us! He has done a wonderful job so far and we are completely thrilled with the work that he has done! If you have a need for a skilled carpenter...give me a shout and I'll give you his number! =)

We switched the back door and the window. This window used to be in that nasty bathroom. Now we switched it around so that I could have more freedom with my cabinets! One of the BEST decisions that we could have ever made!

The window on the right is where the back door used to be.

This is the window that goes over the kitchen sink. Basement door is to the left.

This is my FAVORITE thing that we have done so far!

This is the skinny doorway that lead from the kitchen to the dining room....

Now it looks like this! It gives the whole kitchen a very open feel!
I think it turned out awesome!

Same doorway, just from the dining room looking into the kitchen...
(Isn't Dave so cute? He doesn't usually work in church clothes
and a leather jacket. We just happened to stop by after church and
he couldn't resist doing a little shop vac-ing!)

Well, that's where we are at so far! We are expecting a lot of changes over the next few weeks. I will keep updating as we go! By the way....10 more days til moving day! My poor parents aren't going to know what hit 'em when they get this major lifestyle change....going from 2 in the house to 10 in the house! Ready or not Grandma and Grandpa....here we come.....

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Yay Me!

Ok...so for many reasons I have been wanting to lose weight. In no specific order they are.....

#1. To be healthier. My father died at age 37 because of heart disease. My maternal Grandfather has had a heart attack as well. Not something to mess around with. I want to be here as long as possible for my kids!

#2. I look terrible. Yeah... my husband will be so mad that I actually typed that out, but it's how I feel. You know how us women are... don't try to convince us otherwise!

#3. I am ready for another baby/babies! Actually, I have been ready for about 2 years, but it's finally feeling like it's almost the "right" time. Don't get me wrong, we need to get a few things in order first...mainly our house remodel! But I don't want to get pregnant while I am this overweight. I have been blessed with 4 awesome pregnancies and I want to be in better shape so that hopefully this can be a 5th awesome pregnancy. Especially considering that this could very well NOT be a single pregnancy. I need to be feelin' good so that I can keep up with my other rugrats!

So I started in on "dieting" about 2 weeks ago. I have already lost about 12 lbs! Whoop! Whoop! Mostly for my record, here is what has worked for me:
  • Writing down exactly what I eat...ON THE FRIDGE. I have wrote down in a notebook before, but this seems to work better. It's right in front of my face when I walk in the kitchen. I write down EVERYTHING. Even if it's one twizzler.
  • Eating breakfast. This is hard for me. I am soooo NOT a breakfast eater. Now I usually eat oatmeal and a banana or apple. Sometimes I just eat a granola bar.
  • NOT eating anything at all after dinner. Once I am up from the dinner table, I don't eat another bite. Dave eats all the time. All day long, all night long. He stays skinny though....so that's ok for HIM! A lot of times we would sit down and munch on stuff and watch our shows after the kids go to bed. Shame Shame on me. Now, I brush my teeth as soon as I get the kids in bed. That way I am not tempted so much.
  • Cutting back on my baking. Just for now. Once I lose the weight and feel like I have more self-control, I will go back to baking the goodies. I do miss it.
  • Eating just one helping at dinner time. It is pretty easy to eat light all day. At dinner, there is no way I can always cook low-fat or light for the whole family. I just make sure I do good all day and then at dinner, I eat only one helping of everything....including veggies that I am not wild about.
  • Snacking on fruit only. I do not buy any "light" snack cakes or "low-fat" diet snacks.
  • Allowing myself to cheat. I DO keep some twizzlers and laffy taffy around. Somedays I eat 2 or 3. Somedays I eat none. The most I have eaten is 6. I write it down though. That keeps me from downing half the bag like I used to! I am a CANDY lover!!! Also, if we eat out as a family, which we have done twice since I have started, then I order what I want. I just don't usually eat as much because my stomach has shrunk since I have started dieting.

I do want to start drinking water better. I go through phases with that.

I'm definitely not saying it is the perfect diet plan for everyone. It has just been working for me so far! I would like to lose about 15 to 20 more pounds! I just hope and pray I can keep it up! I am feeling good about it and think I can!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Close Call...

Bryson, my 4 year old, was laying on the floor in the living room watching cartoons in the morning. Nevin walked up and kinda laid/threw himself onto Bryson. Bryson laughed and then got really serious. He looked right into Nevin's eyes and said:

"Nevin! When you walked up, I saw your shadow and I thought you were the Kung Fu Panda! And if you weren't the Kung Fu Panda, then I definitely thought you were a Storm Trooper!"

The kid cracks me up!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Happy 8th Birthday Taelyn and Mariya!

Simply Amazing! That's all I can say to describe my girls! That's all I can say to describe what the last 8 years of our life has been! That's all I can say when I think about how God has been so gracious to give us these beautiful children, including my only 2 girls!

I remember when you two were just toddlers. I would look at you and try to figure out what you would look like when you got older. I could NOT wrap my mind around the thought of my baby girls actually growing up. It seemed like you would just always be my spunky little redheaded babies! So you two turning eight this past weekend just totally blows me away!

Here are the things I want to remember about you now:

You are my big helper. You are all about business when it comes to managing the household.

You are giving. You almost ALWAYS share your toys.

You like to sleep on the top bunk.

You almost always get up about 3 times every night after lights out. Once to tell me your head/stomach hurts. Once to tell me you can't sleep. Once to go potty.

You don't mind your hair in your face.

You like to go out to run errands with me.

You can put away the food like a grown man! You are usually willing to try new and unusual things.

You love to go down and bang around on Daddy's drums.

Your favorite foods are fruits and vegetables.

You sleep with a big entourage of stuffed animals.

You are shy around strangers.

You are a little thicker around the waist than Mariya and wear 1/2 size bigger shoe than Riya.


You are an awesome big sister and you love to make your little guys happy.

You almost always help without complaining.

You love to sleep in whenever you can.

You love to make conversation.

You are very sensative.

You enjoy messing around on your guitar and occassionally Daddy's guitar.

You don't sleep with any stuffed animals.

You have a loud and contagious laugh!

You HAVE to sit with Taelyn at the dinner table. Every night you make sure of that!

You are an awesome eater. You eat just about anything. Sometimes you can be a little picky when it comes to vegetables.

You like a little less drama than Taelyn.

You like to make goofy faces to make people laugh!

Both of You:

Don't mind being called the wrong name. You are VERY used to it. Sometimes you correct people and sometimes you don't.

Love to play with each other. At school, you are not together all the time. At home, you are together 99.9% of the time.

Love music. You like Taylor Swift, Hannah Montana, and just about anything mommy or daddy listens to.

Love to play with your toys! Barbies, Polly Pockets, Dollhouse, GI Joes, Star Wars....

Love to eat salad. At dinner, it's common for you both to eat at least 2 or 3 bowls of salad. Lettuce, cheese, and ranch. Sometimes egg or green pepper.

Are social butterflies. You get along with just about anyone. You make friends lightening fast!

HATE cleaning your room. You girls dread me telling you to clean your room. It usually takes you about 5 times longer than it should because you are playing around.

Like holding hands when we are out and about. Most of the time with each other. You never mind holding Mommy or Daddy's hand either.

Like putting on make-up and dressing up. You have loved doing this your whole life...and still do!

Like to take baths.

Are so rough with each other! You love to wrestle around.

Have so much patience with your little brothers. You play with them and teach them all kinds of things.

Have no idea how lucky you are to have the special bond that you share. To you girls, being twins is "no big deal" and you don't realize how unique it is. I am so glad that you love each other the way you do.

You have brought so much happiness to this family. You are free spirits and very fun-loving little girls. I thank God every day for giving me such little beauties!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

8 years ago today... The birth of my baby girls Taelyn and Mariya.

Ashton was almost 18 months when we decided it was time for another baby. We got pregnant the first month. We were totally shocked! We had planned on it taking a while. I immediately knew that we were having a boy. I knew it. We went in for our routine ultrasound when I was 6 weeks pregnant, and I was just praying that everything was ok. I wanted to see that heart beat. I was ready to see that little "peanut" on the screen and know that everything was ok. When the sonogram tech brought up the screen she sat and stared at it for a minute. She didn't say anything and it made us a little nervous.
Me: (pointing) "Is that the little beating heart?"
Her: (pointing) "Ok, see this?"
Me: "Yeah."
Her: "That's a little beating heart."
(I felt a huge relief come over my tense body! Thank you God!)
Her: "Ok, see this?"
Me: "Yes." (I'm thinking it's a kidney, liver, lung, femur, something like that...)
Her: "That is another beating heart."
Me: "What? What does that mean?" Surely not?
Dave and I sat there totally stunned. The thought never even occured to us. It took a second and finally dawned on us at the same time. We both started laughing. I mean laughing hysterically. I have no idea why. I, personally, could not stop for the rest of the sonogram. Tears of joy and SHOCK rolled down my face. Our due date was January 24th.
On a side note - I have dreamed of having children my whole life. I can remember my high school English teacher asking me what I wanted to be when I "grew up" and I said a Mom. That's all I cared about. I was going to have 4 boys and 1 girl and live in a house out in the country with my sweet and adoring husband. (Well, needless to say... I DID get the sweet and adoring husband part right, but that was about it!) NEVER in all of those years did I EVER picture myself with twins. And I did A LOT of pondering on this subject. Hmmm... kinda funny.
Anyways, we left the doctor's office that day just bursting with joy! It was so fun to go and tell everyone!
Since it was two babies, I really had this maternal feeling that is was twin boys. I just knew it! So at 16 weeks, I was shocked again.... to find out that we were having twin girls! God really liked keeping us on our toes that year! He was reminding us that he was in control... not us!
My pregnancy was 100% healthy. Our doctor was amazing. He was so much fun and he always told me that I was his favorite patient! He had a great sense of humor and always made us feel so comfortable with his wealth of knowledge! With numerous appointments, we quickly gained a close and personal relationship with our doctor!
My stomach got HUGE very quickly to say the least. I enjoyed every single second of it! What an amazing feeling to feel all those arms and legs moving around all at once. Many times they would get the hiccups at the same exact time and both sides of my stomach would be boppin' up and down. Ashton loved to kiss my growing belly! We felt so blessed already and we had not even got to meet our new little girls yet!
I went in to my doctor's office towards the end of December. I was measuring very large! The doctor said he thought it would be "safe" for me to have the babies anytime. He was thrilled that I had made it that far! We set up a date to be induced on January 10th because he was going to Africa and we did NOT want anyone else delivering.
January 10th came and I felt wonderful still. In fact, just the day before I had been out playing in the snow with Ashton. (He had just turned 2 years old) We were so anxious to meet these girls.
We sat around in the labor room discussing and taking votes on what we thought the girls would look like. We were told the entire pregnancy that they were fraternal, so I pictured one with strawberry blonde hair and one with brown hair. We wrote down what everyone thought and had a great time visiting with my Mom and Dad, my Grandma and Grandpa, and my Aunt and Uncle. Ashton was with Dave's parents until later that day.
The doctor induced me at 8:00 a.m. They upped my pitocin every 15 to 30 minutes. Nothing was happening. It was 10:30 and I finally asked a nurse if the doctor could come and break my water. He showed up around 11:oo and broke my water. Contractions started almost immediately. (I had already warned the nurse that with my son, I did not have to push. He was nearly born in the hallway on the way to the delivery room!) So around 12:10 when I told her that I felt like the babies were coming, she did not even check me. She walked out the door and immediately returned with 2 other nurses that wheeled me to the delivery room. She had already buzzed for the doctor.

They set me up in the delivery room very quickly. Now with twins, you have 2 of everyone in the delivery room. Looking around, there were at least 15 people standing around me. It was cold. They have all kinds of equipment just in case there are problems. Dave was right there rubbing my head and pushing my hair back. He was SO nervous. My mom was there with me as well. She was about to BURST with excitement. I felt the urge to push! It felt like trying to stop a freight train! I kept asking "Where is Dr. Shepherd?". They kept telling me that he was on his way! I am set up...stirrups and all. There is a total silence of everyone waiting for him to bust through those double doors. Finally he walks in and looks in my direction only to see a baby crowning! "Wait! Don't have these babies with out me!" he says. He then looks down at his beeper, laughs and reads it outloud, "Ha! 911! 911! 911! 911!". He thought that was so funny!
He walked over said "Oh my, we have some red hair on this baby! And she has got a perfect little grapefruit head!" Within a few minutes, he was holding our baby girl up so that we could see her! She was screaming her head off! We were trying to eww and aww over her, but they swept her away. The nurse was using the sonogram machine to make sure that the 2nd baby was still head down. What a relief to know that she was! Dr. Shepherd broke her bag of water and said "Here comes our second redhead!". She came out very quickly. Too quickly! She didn't cry. She just wimpered and the next thing we knew they had tubes shoved down her nose and throat and machines were beeping like crazy! I was panicked. Dave was worried, but was "trying" not to look worried. I kept asking Dave what was wrong. Was she ok? I could see several people standing around her and neither Dave or Mom could see what was going on. Amazingly enough, Dr. Shepherd was so calm and caring and reassured us that everything was ok. For some reason, that was enough for me. Within 5 to 10 minutes, they told us that Mariya would be just fine and she was doing better. I held Taelyn and was absolutely amazed at how perfect she was. I will never forget how she stopped crying immediately when they handed her to me. She stared directly into my eyes and did not look away for what seemed like hours. I was wheeled out of the delivery room with only Taelyn. Even though I knew Mariya was ok, it was a feeling that made my stomach churn.
Mariya had taken in amniotic fluid because she came out so quickly. They kept her for awhile and I finally got to hold her almost 4 hours later. She was completely 100% healthy after a little rough start. Her two minute APGAR was only 2! I am so glad we did not know at the time.
Taelyn was born at 1:28 p.m. weighing 5 lbs. 9 ozs.
Mariya was born at 1:31 p.m. weighing 5 lbs. 14 ozs.
Ashton came in and met Taelyn first. A few minutes later, he met Mariya. He really could care less. He was just a little guy and he wanted his mommy!!!! We laid in the bed for a little while and watched cartoons and I hugged on his sweet little toddler self! He all of a sudden seemed HUGE! Wow....we were just calling him a "baby" yesterday! =)

When they brought Mariya in and handed her to me, I immediately wanted to hold Taelyn as well. Laying them together on my chest for the first time was something that I will never be able to explain. Saying that it was "simply amazing" is a major understatement. I realized then how much they looked alike! A nervous feeling came over me. Oh my gosh, how will I remember who ate? Who I changed? What if I forget who is who and I forever mix up their names? Thank the Lord for those hospital bracelets! The doctor came in and mentioned that he thought they looked an awful lot alike. He told us that he was going to send the placenta away for testing. (It eventually came back that they were in fact identical twins.)
The hospital stay was so great. I was up walking around and feeling almost completely normal 3 hours after they were born. Our babies were angels!

The girls were born and within 24 hours there were 2 other sets of twins and a set of triplets born in the same hospital. They were dubbed "The Magnificent Nine". We were put up on the 8th floor with the other families because there was so much media hype and they wanted to "up our security". The next morning we were being photographed with the other parents and babies. Our photo with "The Magnificent Nine" appeared in 72 newspapers nationwide and their photograph appeared on CNN News Channel and Regis and Kelly! Nothing like making your world-wide debut the morning after you've birthed twins!!! We were all treated like celebrities and we enjoyed visiting and getting to know each other.

We had family members visiting around the clock. We loved it! We had Ashton up there at the hospital quite a bit too. We were so used to being with him 24/7! We missed him so much when he wasn't with us! Ashton immediately took to the babies. He would come in the room and love on them in his little boyish, clumsy ways! He was already such an awesome big brother. We thought there would be some jealousy and there was NONE...from day one!
Two days later, we returned home as a family of 5. Just days before we were a family of 3! God blessed us in every way possible. What an amazing journey God had in store for us!
These pics are not the best quality and did not scan up well. It was before our digital camera days! =)
This is the only preggo pic I can find that's not packed away. It's got the crease through it which stinks. This was 4 days before I delivered the girls.

"The Magnificent Nine"

All 5 of us...ready to go home from the hospital!

Home from the hospital all snuggled in their cradle.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Tote Obsession...

I have a tote obsession. I know this. I do NOT try to hide it. Dave loves to make fun of me for this! He calls me the "Tote Queen". I love to go down the tote isle. I love the smell of the tote isle. I make trips through there regularly. I come up with many excuses to buy totes. I love to group things and organize them, it's fun. Apparently my kids have taken over my tote-loving traits! ALL of the kids have loved totes, laundry baskets, anything small and confining! But they love them for other reasons....

I had to pull a couple of pics out of the archives. Most of the pics are of Nolan and Nevin and their tote/basket/box loving days!

I lOVE this one of Nolan in the laundry basket.

11 months old

Here's Nevin just a couple weeks later in the same laundry basket.

11 months old

It's usually this way...both in the same one. Most of the time shouting..."ALL ABOARD!"

19 months old

These are the "tote races" that take place in our house periodically. They are getting too big for the little totes, but they still love to get in there and have the big kids push/pull them around!

21 months old (with Ashton and Taelyn)

This is the "please pull us around" face. It works.

21 months old

Nolan was having a blast getting in this tote one night. The big kids called him "Nolan In Carbonite"....we are Star Wars Fans around this house!

(don't freak out, we never actually put the lid on all the way)

Almost 26 months old

The boys will play and laugh when they get in this one. They like to be all crammed in together. It must remind them of their "womb days"!
26 months old

Christmas morning. Why play with new toys when we have a BOX???? Nolan KNOWS he's cute!
26 months old

I am being so serious when I tell you that they sat in this BIG tote and watched Christmas cartoons for an hour! Poor little Mariya was sick, so she missed out on the sibbling closeness that night! Good thing...I am not sure where she would've squeezed in!

So in review...

I love totes.

My kids are incredibly cute.

I am not sure why we NEEDED to get a bigger house.
(maybe just so we can buy more totes?)

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Uncle Travis!

Today my oldest brother would have turned 35 years old! He was just 10 years old when he wrecked his 4-wheeler and went to be with his Heavenly Father. I was only 5 years old when he passed away, but I can remember his sweet, laid-back, honest disposition. He was creative and smart, and had no enemies. Although he died at such a young age, we know that this was God's Will. Jeremiah 29:11..."For I know the plans I have for you..."

We are anxious to be with him in heaven again someday! My life is different because of him. My life is better because of him. I live my life to the fullest every day. I do NOT take for granted that I will always be on this earth. I do NOT take for granted that my kids or my family will always be on this earth. I love and appreciate my husband and kids in a way that I may have never known had this tragedy never happened. I can't wait for my kids to meet their Uncle Travis in heaven and see what an amazing person he is!

In Loving Memory...

Travis Keith Potter
January 1, 1974 - May 4, 1984

(Left to right) My brother Brody, Travis, and me