Thursday, February 23, 2012


Oscar's reading has really taken off in the last few weeks and last night he read us an entire book about sharks.

His learning process is really quite fascinating to watch and I felt so excited for him as he moved through the pages navigating the sounds. He was so proud of himself!

Of course it helps that the book was about sharks, an interesting topic that naturally sparked his curiosity and motivated him to keep reading each page, but this morning he was trying to sound out some of the trickier words on the cereal box so......

I think we may have another reader on our hands.

And can I just say that Brendan is an amazing teacher.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Bento Love

The new thing around here is Bento. Yep, we've caught the Bento bug and he looks like a panda bear.....

I bought this container on Amazon and Nuala is in love. She insisted on taking him to school for snack time but I told her she had to learn how to put him together by herself first. Sealing him shut with the little black elaastic strap isn't as easy as it seems, but she was determined and spent the greater portion of an entire morning practicing and practicing until she had mastered the process.

Initially I thought that the panda was sort of small for an entire meal, but you could easily fit a sandwich in the bottom portion and if you pack it just right (really cram the food in tightly) there is more than enough room for lunch. I already ordered another one for next year when she'll be taking cold lunch to school on a regular basis. This same company also makes these containers in frog and pig shapes, so if you don't like pandas (although who doesn't?) there are other options available.

Up until now we've been using our old Tupperware 3 sectioned containers for snacks, and they work just great, but are an odd size to try and keep flat in a lunch box. Since they don't use lunch boxes this year it hasn't been an issue, and the lids are easy for them to manipulate (meaning Oscar isn't quite ready to devote an entire morning to panda practice).

I've also been playing around with little cookie cutters and cute shapes. I know it seems silly, but we're all enjoying it and sometimes the little stuff really is what you wind up remembering at the end of the day.

Ever since I found out I'm pregnant I've been very food oriented (oh who I am kidding, it's always been that way!) which was fine in those first few weeks when the food looked something like this.....

Unfortunately I seem to have strayed from the cutting board lately, trading in squash for peanut butter cups and bowls of hearty stew for bowls of Captain Crunch. So my challenge this week will be to get back to a healthy lifestyle, one with more whole foods and less high fructose corn syrup. Wish me luck, this isn't going to be easy after all the recent bonding with the Captain.

Friday, February 17, 2012

All of Us

And just when you thought you had it all figured out, you are reminded that life is full of surprises. Like for instance 10 little toes that will need cute little booties to keep them warm.

We told the kids on Valentine's Day when Cupid left an extra gift bag at our table.

Was I nervous at first? Absolutely.
Do I have the most amazing family and support system a girl could ever want? You bet.
And I have no doubt that this little one will be welcomed into our lives with open arms.

I sound pretty calm don't I?

If we're going to be honest, I may as well admit that it took me a few moments (days) to reach a place of peace because initially I was sort of in a panic. A panic that sounded like this:

"Shit. Are you kidding me? Wait, what? No. I mean. Oh crap. How will I tell my husband? Or what about the older kids? They are going to kill me, yep I said the K word, kill. But we gave all our baby stuff away. ALL of it. How far along am I anyways? What if it's twins again? TWINS AGAIN?!? We'd have to give one of them up for adoption. How old will the twins be when this baby starts school? Will they even be in high school together? Where are we going to sleep? Oh, I really like sleeping. We need a new car seat. Wait, we need a new car. No, no, make that a new house and 2 new cars. Crap, I really need a new camera so that I can take a billion pictures of my family's new stuff. How will I have enough time? Will I still be able to keep up with my teenagers? They are entering such a vulnerable and important time in life. Will they still know I love them more than anything? Will they confide in me? Maija and Sidhe will be starting college when this one is starting kindergarten. This baby could be an auntie before she starts middle school. Oh no, I'm going to be a GRANDMA. Can I still go to yoga? Wait, I was going to actually run a marathon this summer, like for real this time. Good thing I gave away all my maternity clothes AND fat pants. I'm not going to get fat this time. I'm not. I'm not. I totally am. I can still run right? I feel sick. How will the twins react to having another baby, they were so young when Saoirse was born they probably don't even remember it, heck I barely remember it. Do I deserve this? Do I deserve to be happy about this? Will this just be a reminder of the past? Is it a boy? He'll be so lonely. Is it a girl? She'll be lonely too. Everyone is so much older than this baby. It'll sort of be like having an only child. That's weird. I feel sick. Wait, where are we going to fit all these kids?! What if it's triplets? Or fraternal twins and then one twin split off into identical twins? Is that still triplets? This would be a great learning opportunity for the older kids, we could talk yet again about safe sex and birth control, oh they are going to cry. I'm going to be so old when this baby graduates from high school. If it's a girl she totally won't want to borrow my clothes. Wait, I drank a bottle of wine last weekend, oh no I had x-rays taken! I feel sick. Maybe we don't even have to tell the older kids, it could be like those shows you see on TLC about women who didn't even know they were pregnant until they delivered. I'm sure the older kids wouldn't even notice. I wonder if I should break up with my OB and pick a midwife? Or better yet a home birth? I always wanted to have an underwater delivery. They won't let you do that in the hospital. They won't let you do that with twins. WHAT IF IT'S TWINS? I feel sick......."

I'm relieved to report that there is only one little bean this time and she or he will be joining us in September. Sure there are tons of challenges to having a large family, but there are also plenty of joys and we're strong enough to figure it all out. Will this baby be taken care of? Certainly. Will this baby be loved? Unconditionally. More than you can imagine. Even during those first few days (weeks) of all my uncertainty and fear I still found myself waking up in the middle of the night with a smile on my face and I knew we were going to be just fine because we do deserve to be happy; all of us.

Although Saoirse might need a little extra persuading once the baby arrives.