5 Dollars

My life as an at-home momma of 3 amazing kids...it's kind of like shoveling snow in a blizzard.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The Great Switcheroo - Part II

I've been working hard this afternoon to get things ready for Matt to move all the furniture around this weekend. I've made some big progress with clearing off dresser tops, cleaning up the window seat, emptying the medicine cabinet and moving Kaylee's clothes.

I still need to figure out how Matt and I are going to store our out of season clothes. He needs to sort through his stuff and see what he'd like to donate too. I already have a couple of boxes of my clothes to go to the next pickup from DAV or AMVETS. I hope to have one more before this whole switcheroo is complete.

Kaylee keeps asking, "is this the night we get to sleep in our new room yet?" I wish I could wave a magic wand and make it happen for her. This is a HUGE job! There is still a mountain of work left to do, but I feel like I've done a lot to help make things easier for Matt this weekend. I still don't know if the kids and I are staying here or going out of town. I guess I need to talk to the Grandparents and see if one of them is up for a weekend visit.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Parents Behaving Badly

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The Great Switcheroo - Part I

I've started moving things back and forth between our room and the kid's rooms. I've moved most of my clothes into Keithen's closet and all their hanging clothes into our closet. Matt's shirts will stay on the top row of their closet, I think. They love the walk in closet! It's a bit tight in the closet area right now. I think we will probably end up having to get storage bags/totes for Matt and I to store our out of season clothes instead of having all our clothes out at once.

I want to get the window seat emptied out and make sure all the laundry is caught up before the big switcheroo this weekend. I also need to find a couple of boxes so I can empty the stuff off the top of our dressers so they'll be ready for the guys to move them on the weekend.

I need to buy Keithen new bedsheets since he is switching from a full mattress to a twin. I don't think he'd appreciate sleeping on Kaylee's twin-sized Dora sheets, LOL! And I'll buy the girls one set of "special" sheets for the full bed and they'll have to use the more neutral of Keithen's as their other sheets.

We have to decide what color our new room will be painted. The kids won't need their room painted, but Matt will be wallpapering one wall in there for them. (Clouds and airplanes along the wall the bed is going on.) We'll need some kind of shelf up high for Keithen beside the bunk bed. I also want hooks along the back wall of their closet for their coats.

I promise to post pictures when we are done moving everything around. Right now it just looks like a disaster with boxes of stuff all over the place as we prepare to shift everything around.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Creepy crawlies!

Kaylee and Ruby have been just as fascinated by the caterpiller they found creeping along in the driveway as they are by the fighter jets zipping by overhead. I haven't been fast enough to get a shot of the Blue Angels yet, but here they are with their much slower friend!


They flyovers have started! This time of year is always fun at our house. We live close to the location of the Indy Air Show http://www.indyairshow.com/ and the jets always buzz right over our backyard. The girls and I keep running outside to see the fighter jets zooming past our house. Last year one was so low I waved at the pilot!

Google Earth

I must stop playing with Google Earth - http://earth.google.com/ - and go do some laundry! Be warned - if you download this you'll get addicted to it! It is so neat to zoom all over the world checking out places. We've looked all around Indiana and zoomed as far away as Ground Zero in NYC, San Francisco, King's Cross Station in England, Iraq, Saint Peter's Square, Red Square and Paris.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

A little whine of my own.

What's wrong with me today? Has it really been that bad of a day? Have the kids really been that hard to deal with? Or have they just been normal kids? Why do I feel like such a crappy mom tonight and like I really dislike my kids right now? God that is so hard to write.

Keithen is on one of his marathon homework avoidance sessions tonight. This stuff would take me 15 minutes per night if he'd just DO IT. His copywork last night looked so great. Daddy read Harry Potter to him while he worked and somehow that helped. Well, Mommy just doesn't have the time or energy for that most of the time. Maybe I should try it, but you know what, I want him to just focus on it and DO IT. Why is it that hard? Why does it take so much work on everyone else's part to get him to work?

Kaylee and Ruby have been whiney and fussy and needy today and I really just needed some time to myself. I even told Ruby "no" today once when she asked to nurse. :( It broke her heart. :( And that broke mine. :( Since she's my last nursling, setting limits with her is just too hard. I want her to nurse forever and ever...but today I just needed a break. Maybe I'm just hormonal today...I noticed I was starting to break out a bit yesterday.

I have to make an effort to take the time to enjoy my kids more often. I get too caught up in life I guess...laundry, appointments, the huge mess they make that *I* have to clean up, all that stuff. But then again, I am also SICK of not being listened too. Sick of having to say things ten times. Sick of having to count 1-2-3 to see someone move when I ask them to do something. Sick of Kaylee being sneaky and lying to me. Sick of 6.5 years of not being able to go to bed and stay in bed with just my husband and no one else who wants to maul my face, kick me in the back or nurse for hours on end coming to climb in bed with me.

I need to take time tonight to remember why I love my kids. Why it's all worth it. Why I wouldn't trade them for anything in the world. Why I'd die for them and kill anyone who ever tried to hurt them. Why I need to be a better mother to them.

I so envy the women I know who come by gentle discipline naturally. I hate the struggle that I go through in order to know how to parent my children...how to discipline them...how to talk to them. Sometimes things come out of my mouth and I think, "Did I really just say that to my child!?" Something that makes so much sense shouldn't be such a struggle. I'm sure my inconsistencies and temper have screwed them up on so many levels already. I've yelled at all of them in such a way today that makes me want to just go curl up in a corner and sob. When they made mistakes today, why couldn't I show them the respect they deserve?

I've got so much on my mind tonight. I'm worrying about the new moms I've helped with their nurslings lately. I'm worrying about the thyroid tests that I'm having done in the morning and how I'm going to handle two very energetic young ladies first thing in the morning all by myself while I'm in the process of getting an ultrasound done. I'm worrying about money and how long it will be before we are out of this crackerbox of a house. Most of all, I'm feeling very much imperfect and undeserving of the three amazing blessings that have been placed in my keeping. I must do better by them.

Want some cheese with that whine?

The girls are driving me crazy today. They are so whiney and needy for some reason and *I* feel like I need space today. Not a good combination! Kaylee is also in one of those moods where she goes "from Zero to 60" at the drop of a hat as far as her frustration level goes. I think I'm going to have to find something for us to do this afternoon to change the energy around here somehow. Maybe we'll bake a cake later and they can decorate it.

Keithen had a thermal scan at Dr. Mike's yesterday and his body has been adapting very well! He had all white, green and blue lines on the scan, which is great. His changes were so huge that Mike put him on every other week visits now! Yeah! (And from a financial standpoint it's great because that means he is paid for about 8 months in advance!)

Keithen did his math homework yesterday at Dr. Mike's and then his spelling homework last night with Daddy while I was at LLL. He did a GREAT job writing his words. His handwriting as improved so much already this school year. I'm glad to see the improvement because I think that was the thing he needed to work on the most. They have a lot of writing homework to do this week as it's a spelling review week. Hopefully he'll be as cooperative about completing it this week as he was last night.

Monday, August 22, 2005

The beginning of progress.....

I've almost caught up on Matt's laundry. (Of course by the time I do, the kids will most likely each have worn at least 3 outfits in a one day due to various spills, accidents, etc.)

I've started sorting out stuff for the big fall community sale that we put stuff in. It's a great sale - kid's stuff only - clothes, toys, whatever, plus maternity stuff. One entire gymnasium is full of toys and furniture and the other one is full of clothes from baby sizes on up and sorted by sex and size. We've made a little money off of it the two times we've put stuff in. Very nice. And once I was able to go and shop and bought Keithen some clothes as well as winter coats for Keithen and Kaylee for very good prices.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Confession time!

I have an adversion to housework. I admit it. It's like shoveling snow in a blizzard anyway with three kids underfoot. Sometimes I feel like, "why bother!" As soon as I pick up one room and move to the next, the first one is trashed again. Now that Keithen is back to school, it's my goal to try to develop some kind of a routine and get the kids to help me more with the housework.

Keithen and Ruby have been doing a great job of putting their own laundry away lately. (Ruby actually did it without being told the other night!) Keithen isn't even complaining when I ask him to take care of his clothes now. I think labeling his drawers helped a lot.

Kaylee and Ruby seem to like to help clean the kitchen floor. The both also like to help cook when they can.

Big changes ahead.....

Matt and I are both sick of it looking like Toys R Us exploded in our living room. (The whole house, actually!) We're talking about doing some major rearranging around here in order to keep the majority of the toys OUT of our living room. (Our house is TINY. We have 2 small bedrooms and one master bedroom with an attached bathroom. I often say we're like too many mice that have been put in a cage and then they start turning on each other.) Another issue is that Ruby will soon outgrow the crib that is being used as a sidecar to Kaylee's twin bed so she really needs somewhere else to sleep.

Here's the plan right now.....

We're going to move all three kids into the master bedroom that is currently our room. Keithen will finally get to move to his top bunk and the girls will sleep together on the futon that is under it. We'll store Kaylee's headboard and footboard and probably sell the crib. We're going to turn our waterbed pedestal drawers into a dresser for the girls by stacking them and then putting a cabinet top over them.. Keithen's dresser will also move into our room as well as his desk. His dresser will help to "section off" a little space for him where his desk will be. We'll probably put a desk or table for the girls along the back of his dresser. The room will probably be painted blue and have the old cloud and airplane wallpaper that we have put up in it.

We're going to get rid of the waterbed and get ourselves a Queen-sized mattress (hopefully with a memory foam topper). We might end up on the sofa bed for a bit before we can afford to buy the mattress, we'll see. We'll be moving into Keithen's old room though. New paint and wallpaper will be in order as we don't want teddy bears on our walls! LOL! It may be a bit crowded in there, but I think it will be OK.

We'll then turn the girls' old room into a playroom, keeping the same paint and wallpaper. Ruby's dresser will stay in there and will probably eventually hold a TV with built in DVD player on top of it. (IF THEY EARN IT by helping keep their toys contained to the toy room where they will now belong.) I may even consider moving some of the dress up clothes into that dresser instead of the box they now live in. We'll have to add a bunch of shelves into that closet for games and stuff. The child-sized table and chairs may end up in there. I will be DELIGHTED to get the play kitchen out of my kitchen and into the new playroom!

We figure this arrangement will only need to be for 2-4 years before we are finally OUT of this house and can move into/build one that will better suit our family size and will be closer to Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Eric.

There is SO much work to do to prepare to move all this stuff. And then all the actual rearranging and redecorating! The kids and I will probably leave for three days and let Matt and whatever helpers he can find tackle the job. It sounds too difficult/dangerous to do with all of them here underfoot.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Artists at work!

Kaylee and Ruby are artists at work today! Crayons, markers, scissors, construction paper, glue, tape, stickers, old boxes and pieces of cardboard have been the favored playthings of the day. Actually, the girls love creating whenever they get the chance.

A couple of weeks ago we created cut paper collages inspired by Ed Emberley's book The Wing on a Flea and talked about shapes and colors.

Last week they did a lot of watercolors.....and some of the paint even got on the paper! LOL!

Earlier this week it was coloring Dora and Max & Ruby coloring pages printed from Nick Jr. and making "star pockets" to catch stars in like Dora the Explorer.

Yesterday it was chalk drawings on the sidewalk which evolved into pictures drawn on black construction paper with lots of colors of chalk.

Today Kaylee and Ruby have put together a cardboard house for Kaylee's constant companion, Magic Bunny. (With a little help here and there from Mommy, who made construction paper carrots to plant in the garden and cut out the holes in the box.) It's been colored and decorated with stickers and furnished all from Kaylee's imagination.

Kaylee certainly has quite an amazing imagination that seems to work non-stop. She can see in her mind how she wants her end product to look and works with purpose to create it. (And if she asks for your help and you can't understand her vision, well, good luck! LOL!) I can't wait to see how her art changes as she grows older. We're hoping to get her into a preschool art class at the Art Center sometime soon.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

It's the Simple things......

It's the simple things that make our days bright.

For Kaylee, it's twirly pink dresses that make her laugh and smile.

For Ruby, it's when she says, "nee-nee tickle me!" (Look at those eyes!)

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

A better day

The girls and I went to the library this morning. We left with a HUGE stack of books. Our library basket is overflowing tonight. I am so glad that they all have such a great love of reading!

Keithen's homework went better tonight. BUT he didn't have much writing to do - mostly circling spelling words. I think the writing is really where our struggle lies. He HATES to write. The funny thing about that is, the boy wants to be an author when he grows up! Guess he plans to do all his work at the computer! LOL!

Monday, August 15, 2005


Keithen has been back to school for a month already. He goes to a great year-round school and so far I really like his first grade teacher. Unfortunately, homework is a HUGE battle for us so far this year.

In Kindergarten they brought home about 4-5 pages of homework on Monday night and had to turn it in on Friday. He was in 1/2 day KG so he had a lot of time to do homework. Every week he turned in all his work completed on time.

This year, they bring home two pages of homework a night (one on Thursday night if they pass the weekly spelling test that day) and the work is due the next morning.

We've been fighting a very frustrating battle to get him to do his homework over the past few weeks. He actually went to school once without finishing it and had to miss recess as a consequence. The pitiful part is that the work is SO easy for him. He could do it in 15 minutes if he'd just focus and work on it. I'm at a loss for what to do to help him understand how important it is to do this and to begin to develop good homework habits before the work gets harder as the year progresses.

Welcome to my blog!

I kept a blog for a very short time when I was pregnant with Ruby. I decided that I'll give it a try again now. I think it might be helpful to have some time to myself to sit down and hash out my thoughts each day. It'll also be nice to share pictures of the kiddos and what's going on with our family with those who don't see us very often.