Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Quints

Can you imagine having 5 babies? The Wilkinson family here in Austin recently brought their quintuplets, Ryder, Kindall, Kassidy, Kaydence, and Rustin, home from Phoenix, where they were born. They are members of our church and, as you can imagine, need all the help they can get for a few months. I had an opportunity to go over last week for three hours one night with my friend, Danielle, to help out. It was quite the adventure!

They just moved into a new house and have converted the study and dining room into a cute nursery. We walked in the door and saw 4 little babies in bouncy chairs and one being held getting ready for a bottle. Everything was so organized - each baby has a color, which helps a lot. There is a log book to write down when each one eats, spits up, gets a diaper change, etc. I was pretty intimidated at first, but jumped right in. Rachelle, the mom, went out for a bit so we mostly hung out with the Jayson after he got the two older kids put to bed.

It was fine for the most part. There was about 45 minutes where everyone was hungry and crying at the same time. Jayson had two babies and Danielle and I would go between the other three picking them up, putting them down, changing dirty clothes, feeding, etc. Eventually all five babies fell asleep for a while... they were so sweet. I can't imagine having 5 babies all the time, but if there is a family that can do it, I think this is the one.

FYI, their other two kids are 5 and 7. That makes 7 kids total with an average age of 1.8 years old. Whew!

You can check out the Wilkinson's website here and there are links to their blogs on that site.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Learning to Walk

Lucas is improving his walking skills every day. He's so cute as he teeters around the room.
Here's a little video.

Friday, September 14, 2007

First Swing

Today I took Lucas to the park with my friend, Brenna, and her kids. There's not too much for a little kid to do at the park, but Lucas did swing for a few minutes. I managed to get this funny picture of him on his first ride in the swing. He really liked if for a few minutes, but then changed his mind and wanted out.
Lucas also had fun climbing up the slide, trying to eat leaves and rocks, and crawling towards big group of moms with babies and stealing their water bottles.
Before we left, Brenna let Jackson go down the slide a couple more times, so I let Lucas crawl up a couple more times. I got sidetracked feeling sorry for myself because I was sweaty and sticky, and Lucas fell off the bottom of the slide onto his noggin. Yes, I feel bad. Now he's fast asleep having nap time. He's such a good boy.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Boys I Live With...

Last night I had a meeting so Ben and Lucas got to spend the evening together. I realized when I got home that I didn't leave any pajamas out for Lucas. (I kind of have them scattered in bizarre places upstairs - Ben complains that I hide things from him). So when I got home I asked Ben if he found something and he said "yes". I asked if it was the two piece pj's or the one piece and he said two pieces. I figured he found the ones I had sitting on the ledge.

Well, when Lucas woke up this morning I cracked up because he was in a cute onesie and his blue pants that he wore last year. They are size 0-3 months! I had them sitting on the clock in Lucas' room to block the glowing numbers so they wouldn't bother Lucas while he was sleeping. Ben thought I had them out for Lucas to wear.

Here's a pic of Lucas in his 2006 attire:

You'll notice Lucas is playing with some books. He LOVES books now. He will sit for so long and just look at different books. It's kind of nice. Sometimes he just likes to go to his room and "read" his books. He also thinks its fun to get into the drawers and empty everything out of them. That's not so nice. Here he is reading after emptying the blanket drawer.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Mafia Girls

When my mom, sister, and niece were in town we all four wore black shirts to church. The three of them had the same shirt on (except Maddie's wasn't shiny) and mine had long sleeves. After church our friend Adam asked if we were in the mafia. Ben tried to convince Adam that we really were like the mafia. Poor Ben. He had been the only boy for too long, besides Lucas.

I just wanted to share these cute pics real quick. These are our, "Oh no, we didn't take any pictures yet" pictures. They usually happen right before the trip to the airport.

Lucas is holding his little plastic "grenade toy" and wearing his little sailor outfit that my sister, Lisa, gave him. I think it's really cute, as do most other girls. Ben thinks Lucas looks like a weird Dutch boy when I put him in this. Too bad - I'm the fashionator in this household.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Do I look fat with this hair?

Well, folks, my long hair is gone. Today I went with my friend, Jamie, to get our hair cut. I sat in the chair and told Lisa (the hair girl) to take about four inches off, do the same layering business, bang business, etc. She was all done and said, "You know, this would look a lot better if you would just cut your hair to here," pointing to my shoulders. She went on to explain the movement of the hair, the layering, the tapering, yada yada. So, I decided I would think about it while Jamie got her hair cut. After a few encouraging words from Jamie and Jeana (via cellular telephone technology) I decided to whack my hair. I had been thinking about it anyways, but my long hair is just so convenient - I can always put it in a bun, braid, pony. I guess that could really be a problem. I've asked my friends to not let me turn into one of those Amish looking ladies that has really long hair and just always has it in a bun, a braid, or a braided bun... I'm afraid that is what I was becoming. Only with a better fashion sense and better makeup.

Anyhow, what started off as a trim, ended up as a serious haircut. I bet total I got about 9 inches cut off. Ben hasn't seen yet... nor does he know about the 2nd trip to the seat. We'll see what his reaction is tonight. I'm betting he will notice.

I don't know what to do with these bangs. I think I will forgo the bangs next time. I just don't know if I like how the lady cuts them. We'll see....

Oh yeah, and back to my butt. I thought my butt looked bigger after my hair cut. Then I realized it was probably my butt making me look fat and not my hair. :)

And I would like to apologize to JennV for cutting my hair. She's always supported and been a big fan of my long hair. Especially because I could wear it to a luau if I needed to, and that's just fun. I guess now I'll have to purchase a couple coconuts.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

It Ain't Easy Being 1

Lucas has been 1 for only six days now, and already life is getting harder for him.
As we get older the opportunity for more bonks and booms comes into play. My mom and Ben got Lucas to take a few steps the night of his birthday, and he's been working hard ever since. So, he has fallen several times, too. But, he has a nice padded diaper, so it's not that big of a deal.

Yesterday was Lucas' first real pool party. Unfortunately I stink and putting sunscreen on evenly, so the little guy got a little fried on half of his face. This wouldn't have been a problem if he would wear his hat, but like everything else Lucas touches, the hat went overboard.

After the pool party we went home for our afternoon naps. When Lucas woke up he was very sad. I figured he needed to go back to bed, but that just made him more angry. Eventually he was screaming his brains out and shaking... like he did when he was teething. Earlier that day Jamie thought Lucas' gums looked swollen, and she was right. Lucas is getting both bottom molars. Poor baby. After lots of crying, two doses of Tylenol, and some Orajel, Lucas finally settled down and became Lucas again.

We had decided to go to Chili's with our friends for dinner, so I thought I would give Lucas a shower before dinner instead of a late bath. After our shower, Lucas was crawling in and out of the shower (this is considered fun - the shower was dry & clean BTW) when suddenly I heard a little shriek. I looked in the shower and saw blood. Poor little Lucas had cut his finger on the drain.

Ben and I worked hard to bandage him up and eventually got his finger all taken care of... as well as two fingers on the other hand to distract him from the actual hurt finger. Somehow, the distraction band aids always come off first.

Eventually we were all organized and we went to Chili's to meet our friends for dinner. We had a lovely time, but then in the parking lot we had a bloody mess again. After several attempts to put new bandages on, I finally applied pressure with a diaper and elevated his finger while we drove to Wendy and Blair's house. There we got out the first aid kit and fixed him up properly with lots of tape, as well as two more distraction fingers. We also ate ice cream.

Anyhow, here's a video of Lucas with his hurt finger. He's just "walking" around the kitchen.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Happy Birthday Lucas!

I've been delaying this entry long enough! Lucas finally turned 1...o-n-e. He is officially not a teeny tiny baby anymore. I guess we'll have to have another right away - not.

I didn't want to have a huge bash for Lucas. As a matter of fact, I have been known to make fun of people who have extravagant parties for babies turning 1. I just wanted a simple get together with friends for cake... just a plain old cake, which Lucas would have one slice of and we'd call it a day.

Well... then my imagination started cranking. I got excited by the idea of actually making a cool cake. And the infatuation began. A little over a month ago I started my daily internet search of how to make fondant icing. I decided I would have to buy the Wilton's fondant from a craft store, but then read that it tasted nasty, so then I read about buttercream fondant and marshmallow fondant. Mmmm. The marshmallow fondant won whole heartedly because it was easy and not full of butter. A week later I made my first batch of fondant, which was successful. The next week I made another and sealed it tightly in the fridge with the first batch. THEN it was time to start the cake baking. I decided to make the recipe for the most delicious coconut cupcakes ever, sans the coconut. Each recipe makes three 9 inch layers, so I took two days and made the recipe twice, resulting in four 9 inch layers and four 6 inch layers. The next week, I made the buttercream frosting (the glue for the fondant). Before I knew it, Tuesday had arrived and it was time to build the cake.

For the bottom tier, I used apricot jam and toasted almonds for the filling. For the top tier I used raspberry jam for the filling.

The hardest part of the cake-building process was rolling out the fondant and putting it on the cake. I did the small tier first and was successful; although, I did end up with ripples on the side of the cake. For the big tier I calculated that I would need to roll out a circle with a diameter of about 22 inches. This proved to be tricky. During my first try, when I tried to pick up the fondant, it was stuck to the counter because I didn't use enough corn starch. The second try worked out perfectly. I still had the ripples, and a little rip on top, but it looked ok once I doctored it up.

Then I had to knead colors into the fondant and cut out the circles for the decorations. It was all downhill from here. I just focused on covering up the problems I had in the fondant and ended up with a pretty cute cake! Ben said it looked like a Dr. Seuss cake. These are the names he came up with: Kirkle Sake, Layer-Ma-Loo, Boo-Jelly Wahoo, Bort-A-Snort Torte, All-Mundy B'Gundy, and Pizzle Pie.

By Tuesday night I felt good that the whole cake was taken care of. I just had to stick dowels in the bottom layer and stack the cakes right before the party. What I had not taken care of was cleaning the house for my company.

The great thing about having a sister with flight benefits is that your mom can call you on Saturday and say, "Did I tell you we're thinking about coming to Austin?" Me, "No. For Thanksgiving?" Mom, "No, on Tuesday for Lucas' birthday."

Sweet! But, I did have to do a quick house cleaning Tuesday night after Lucas went to bed. It worked out just fine. Mom and Dad got in at 10:45 and we got home went to bed by midnight or 1:00.

Anyhow... this is about Lucas, right? Wednesday morning I took Ben to work and my parents, Lucas, and I had a lovely breakfast with an eggs, bacon and toast. Then we rested and lounged around the house. It was just great. In the afternoon we were taking naps and at 2:37 I did happen to wake up and say to myself, "Happy Birthday Lucas."

We went to get Ben at about 5:30 and left my dad in charge of putting the pizza in the oven. we ate our quick dinner and then our friends came over at 7:00 for cake. Of course Lucas didn't think anything too special was going on. He probably wondered why we were all gathered around singing to him... and why there was a fire on top of a cake, but other than that it was normal. UNTIL he got a huge cake placed on his tray. This was a first for him. He kind of ignored it at first until I gave him a taste of the frosting. Then he ate some cake, threw some on the floor, and used the rest as a drum.

He was very greasy after the cake so my mom and I gave him a quick bath and then he got to "open" presents. He mostly liked the ribbons and the paper. Lucas got a cool Nerf baseball bat, a couple trucks, bubbles, clothes, books, and a tent/tunnel system. I thought he would like to hide in it... like the fireplace.

It was a good night. Lucas was very cute, the cake was yummy, and it was wonderful to have family and friends here.

The celebration didn't stop there. Sadly, my dad had to leave early Thursday morning, but my sister, Carrie, and her daughter, Madison, flew in Friday night. We spent Saturday running around like crazy, but had a good time. Everyone left Sunday afternoon, so it was back to just the three of us.

I still can't believe it's been a year. I keep remembering back to last year and thinking of how I never thought I would survive. I was so nervous, I didn't have an appetite. I was exhausted, but still couldn't sleep. And I didn't think I could be home alone with the baby. Those were a tough couple of weeks! I think you have to have one kid to understand that you won't be up every three hours for the rest of your life, that eventually the kid will sleep through the night, eventually you will be able to leave the house, and eventually, maybe some day you will want to do it to yourself all over again. Crazy stuff, those kids...