Thursday, January 31, 2008

Princess Madelyn Update

Madelyn had another well visit today and is now caught up with all shots until she's four. Our pediatrician is referring us to an ENT for possible tubes and adenoids removed. She hasn't had any ear infections but keeps fluid in her ears and the runny nose will not clear up with any allergy meds or change of diet so we're hoping an ENT can shed some light for us so we can possibly get rid of this snot we deal with every day and have bee for the past 11 months. Also, the pediatrician wants the ENT to examine her mouth b/c of her tongue problems. After we see the ENT and do what he recommend then we need to take her to a pediatric dentist. They may also be able to help us with her tongue problem and the ped wants a consult on her jaw structure. Her mouth may not be big enough and may need spacers for her teeth (this is how I understood it but sounds weird to me). She had four shots today, TB test, and had blood drawn. Poor baby cried and poured the tears when she saw the nurse walk in the room with the needles and had not cried a tear before that. Then we went to the lab for the blood draw and she started crying before they laid her down on the bed. It was pitiful but she laid so still and was so good taking all those needles.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Three's a Crowd

You've heard this phrase before but I'm living proof. Why is it when one of the three tots is not around, the other two are so good? It doesn't matter which two either.

This afternoon Madelyn slept later b/c she decided to play for over an hour in her crib before napping. The boys were angels when they got up. No screaming, just quiet and playful. Last week when Nate went to the doctor with Tony and I was left at home with Madelyn and Andrew, watching those two were a breeze. Same happens if Nate and Madelyn are together and Andrew is off in another room. There's something about the third party coming in that creates extreme chaos.

Today has just been another one of those days that I wish I had a full time job outside of home. No one can understand how tough it is to be so homebound with three one-year olds unless they've experienced it. On days I vent about being coped up inside I get advice "well, just put them in a stroller and go outside." DO YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS? It's not just a matter of open the door and throw them in a stroller and start walking. It's get 6 socks on 6 feet, 6 shoes on 6 feet, and three jackets. By the time I have one with socks and shoes on, another has taken off with a shoe and now it's lost and when I find it the first has taken off her shoes. If I managed to get them all together and dressed, someone is going to poop. So I change the poop, find a sippy has been opened and spilled everywhere, noses need to be cleaned, and darn if another shoe isn't lost again. ARGH!

Yesterday I tried to take them all to the bus stop to get Logan off the bus. We got there before the bus so I had to entertain them. Andrew took off up a bank towards the school and Nate followed. Madelyn fell down so I'm back down the hill picking her up while Andrew is across the field. Then I catch Andrew and Nate takes off b/c he thinks it's funny to be chased. Thankfully Logan got off the bus and ran to rescue me and I had him hold Madelyn so I could chase the other two. It never ends.

And when is the screaming going to end? Talk to me kids. Use words, sign language, I don't care but don't scream. Last night I couldn't cook for them swinging from the gate of the kitchen pulling brackets off the walls b/c they want to eat right then NOW and no waiting. I should just throw away every toy in the house, all the cartoons and kids movies, anything fun to play with b/c they don't care about that and it only takes one to start something and they all get involved.

I need a break. I have already sent out my begging email to a dear friend and she's going to give me and Tony a night without kids soon, all-nighter. I'm not coming home either b/c I'll just clean or do other things in the house and I need to get away from it. I see enough of our house 24 hours a day every day. K, I owe you one!!!

Monday, January 28, 2008

"What is Madelyn's birthdate?"

I got asked this as I entered the YMCA today after scanning my card to let me in. We rejoined this month but both Tony and I have been several times without anyone stopping me. We have a family membership so our kids show up when we scan our cards.

I answered with "4/23/06" so she looked back at her screen and said "okay" as if "yep, this is right" but came back with "so, when are Nathaniel and Andrew's birthday?"

I said "3/3/06" and of course got the HUH look and completely confused. So, what comes out of my mouth?

"Madelyn's adopted. She's 7 weeks younger."

Ouch, I just labeled my daughter again. I don't want to always say this when explaining why we have three kids the same age. I shouldn't have to say this. How is Madelyn going to handle that later on in life? Will she be proud to be adopted into our family? Will she get upset everytime the word "adoption" is mentioned? I should be able to say "this is my daughter" with no questions asked but society doesn't understand not all families are created by the man and woman of the household but are created by other birth parents as well being raised by their parents that adopted them. We have so many challenges ahead of us and I can only hope and pray we are ready for these.

Here's where we stand....

Just a little update on what's going on in our lives right now...

No offers on our current house. We've only have four families to look at it in almost two months - NOT GOOD. Two cancellations - Definitely not good (don't these people know how hard it is to keep up with four kids, three in diapers and a clean house plus get them out of here to show the house?)

We have a house in mind we want to make an offer on, but we need to sell first. It's in a good school district and very close to a family we adore. It's four bedroom, with bonus and office, huge back deck and a full basement that can be finished later on for a few more rooms plus plumbed for a bath. It's also convenient to grocery stores and other shopping centers. Unfortunately we need to sell first in a market that is very slow and nothing is selling around us.

We had our last home visit with the social worker yesterday and should have the post-placement report in a few weeks to finalize everything with Madelyn's adoption. After that, I can mail it to our adoption agency and also make a trip to clerk of courts for Readoption in NC (after more paper work to be filed out and finding all the documents needed for this). Madelyn has a physical this week too. If we can't get a referral or something done for her sinus problems, we're going to take her to another pediatrician. Eleven months (at least) of snot is NOT fun at all. Other families have mentioned seeing an ENT so I may mention this to the pediatrician this week and see what she says about that. She's still having spells of blow-outs. Last night was one where it happened in the booster seat at the table so bad she went straight to the bathroom, placed on a towel for cleanup and straight to the tub and the chair went outside to the backyard and was hosed off. This morning it happened again but not as bad and it stayed contained in her pj's.

Nate and Andrew are true boys...fighting, swiping toys, etc. Madelyn gets in there too with all that. This morning they were all three sweet when it came to getting their breakfast. I told them "you can eat when I get a kiss" and they all lined up with their kissy lips and gave me a kiss. Nate refused at first but he came around when the other two did it. Nate is recovering from right ear infection and tonsilitis. He's much better than he was last week.

Logan got all smiley's at school last week. I think that's the first week with all smiley's. Lucky for him it was only a three day week but he still got an extra reward for being good all week at school.

Nothing exciting about my life really but I did get our taxes done before the 31st of January. I haven't filed them but I was excited to get it done. We really should get more credit when it comes to having kids. They are more expensive than the government gives us credit for. We were also able to file for the adoption credit for the first time. We don't get it all back in the first year but it's nice to get some of what the government credits us for this year.

We're getting an outing with just Logan this upcoming weekend. Logan gets overlooked a lot with three babies in the house so Tony and I are taking him on a baby-free outing to the Circus. I'm excited. I haven't been to a Circus since I was probably in Elementary School.

So, pretty boring life here I'd say. Not dull, just boring. We need more excitement than diaper blow-outs, vomit, ear infections, selling a house, buying a new one, preparing to move, and Kindergarten homework.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Another Family Adventure

So I volunteered to be a mystery shopper....

One of Madelyn's therapist's sent an email to me about a mystery shop and it was for a free admission to Charlotte at Play, a children's museum at the other end of Charlotte from where we are. At what is normally $6 a head to walk in the door, I took the chance for a free child-friendly adventure. Our drive down wasn't so bad but when we got maybe 2/10 of a mile away, Andrew vomited in the backseat in his carseat AGAIN. We pulled over at a grocery store, pulled him out in the parking lot, stripped him down and changed him and cleaned up as best as we could. My vehicle stinks so bad right now. He isn't sick, he just does this all the time. (Remind you, he was a reflux baby and still is a reflux baby but the amount is 10 times worse.) The visit wasn't so bad. It's a small museum and open so easy to see around all exhibits if a child runs off. It also wasn't crowded which made it much easier for two adults taking on three one-year olds. The kids had a great time and it was nice to be out of the house during the day for me.
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One little funny thing that did happen, Tony said while he and Madelyn were in the dress-up area, a little boy came over and pulled Madelyn's snot from her nose and put it in his mouth. The mom was disgusted but her son had a runny nose too. GROSS! Glad I didn't see it.

Our Little Drummer

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

A Smucker's Smile for Me

This is what I saw when I opened up my Smucker's sugar free strawberry preserves...too cute.
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Sunday, January 20, 2008

There aren't many supermoms tougher than Melissa...

But I believe that this one might just have even Melissa beat.

Alone in her one-room cabin high in the mountains of southern Mexico, Ines Ramirez Perez felt the pounding pains of a child insistent on entering the world.

Three years earlier, she had given birth to a dead baby girl. As her labour intensified, so did her concern for this unborn child.

The sun had set hours ago. The nearest clinic was 80km away over rough roads, and her husband, her only assistant during a half-dozen previous births, was drinking at a cantina. She had no phone and neither did the cantina.

So at midnight, after 12 hours of constant pain, the petite, 40-year-old mother of six sat down on a low wooden bench. She took several gulps from a bottle of rubbing alcohol, grabbed a 15-cm knife and began to cut.

By the light of a single dim bulb, Ramirez sawed through skin, fat and muscle before reaching inside her uterus and pulling out her baby boy. She says she cut his umbilical cord with a pair of scissors, then passed out.

That was March 5, 2000. Today the baby she delivered, Orlando Ruiz Ramirez, is a rambunctious 4-year-old. And Ines Ramirez is recognised internationally as a modern miracle: She is believed to be the only woman known to have performed a successful Caesarean-section on herself.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

What little snow we got...

It's not even worth bundling up all these kids to go out in. Plus it's raining so I'm not wasting my time getting on thick layers of clothes to go out in these few flakes that we have.

I think Logan has only seen one good snow his entire life and he was a baby then. Thankfully I have pictures to show him how I put him in a laundry basket and tied a rope to it and pulled him around in the snow. We bought a sled after that so the neighbors wouldn't call us, well, you know some names that might come up. That sled has done nothing but collect dust since then.
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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

After bath fun in diapers

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Why we don't co-sleep....

Our daughter is becoming a stripper

Well, most of my readers know our last name so I guess that fits. When I go into her room in the mornings now she is stripped down to her diaper in her crib. I don't know if she's doing this before she goes to sleep or when she wakes up. We don't dare go into her room when she is sleeping b/c she is a light sleeper and easily wakes up just walking by her room.

Also, Madelyn is waking up to blood spots on her sheets. No scratches, no bloody nose or ears, no blood in diaper, no where on her body. All I can think of is she is biting her tongue in her sleep. She bites it frequently b/c she hangs it out all the time. I've been told speech therapists can help out but CDSA says she can't get speech therapy until she's two years old. I'm emailing them today to see if we can speed this up.

She's also hit a growth spurt I do believe b/c her clothes are not fitting anymore. She probably could use a 2T in dresses and shirts now. Some 18 month pants are too tight in the waist and butt but she has short legs so I'm going up to 24 months in pants. She has a very long torso. Her next physical is the 31st and I'm curious what the growth charts will show of her increase since last time.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Crazy ideas I come up with...

So, our house was being shown again today during scheduled lunch time for the three tots so I came up with the bright idea, "Let's go to Chuck E Cheese." Logan has been asking me a lot lately to go back. Fortunately he's at the age we can trust him to let him go play, he checks in on us and gets more tokans and he's back off again playing. We haven't endured this agony with the trio yet. It was bad but it could have been worse. Andrew vomited on himself and Tony while Tony was changing Andrew's stinky in the bathroom. Andrew came out shirtless. I didn't bring in a diaper bag, just a few diapers, but fortunately we had a spring outfit in the car. We were able to contain them in the toddler area and we stood at the entrance to keep them from running out. It definitely takes two adults to take on this crowd to go to public places like this. It's probably going to be a long time before we ever go back. While there we had a call that someone else wanted to see our house right after the one that was currently going on. We knew we couldn't stay at CEC longer so we wasted some gas and drove around the county exploring while the babies watched the Wiggles on the DVD player in the car. Next time we have showings on weekends, I think we'll just bundle them up warm and go to the local park that is fenced in the toddler gas, save money, and save our sanity.
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Go Deacs!!!

You have to agree....Isn't this the prettiest WFU cheerleader you've ever seen?

I got this for Madelyn for Christmas and it's a size 3, not sure what that really means but I was thinking bigger than 24 months so she could wear it for a while, maybe a little big at first. Nope, I barely got the shirt over her head. It's not going to last if she keeps growing like a weed. Of course her daddy's were "well, we'll just have to get another." His little princess will always be a Wake Forest fan.
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Friday, January 11, 2008

I can do anything...

I'm reminded of the song that goes "I can do anything, anything better. I can do anything better than you." I just got back from taking the three tots to the Elementary School to eat lunch with Logan. People that don't know us probably wouldn't realize how big of an ordeal it is to plan on going out with three one-year olds until they meet me or experience it.

Logan was crying this morning wanting me to eat lunch with him. So, I thought about it all morning and thought and I re-thought and decided I'd go ahead as long as it wasn't raining (got caught in the rain with these three yesterday walking back from the school). I decided there was no way I could go through the lunch line with them so best bet was to hit a fast food restaurant and take something b/c I didn't want to cook something up and then put it all into containers to carry to the school. School's here have new rules that you can't take in wrappers from fast food restaurants b/c they want to promote healthy eating so I took two generic Tupperware (not sure the correct brand it is but that's our term for it) and got all of them in my Expedition. We headed to McD's to get a 10 piece nugget meal for the babies to split (cheaper than three Happy Meals) and then I hit Taco Bell for Logan (I try to get him to eat something other than nuggets once in a while). I empty these into my containers when I get to the school.

I took the double umbrella stroller and fastened in Nate and Andrew. Madelyn was left to walk. She can't run. Most of the time she can't even walk straight so I knew she wouldn't run off. My triple doesn't turn curves that well and especially wasn't going through the crowded cafeteria. We got there a little early and the boys did not like waiting. Madelyn smiled and so many people were saying "aw, how cute" when I'm thinking "she's just showing off." She can be just as mean and irritable as the boys but out in public she hams it up.

Madelyn did fine sitting at the table until she pooped. Nate got irritable too in the stroller while eating and I later discovered he had pooped to. Andrew probably behaved better than I ever would have thought. We did end a little early and I sent Logan back to his table with his class. I think Logan was happy especially with Madelyn coming. He seemed to want to show her off to his friends and he got lots of attention from his classmates.

It took us a while to get loaded back up and back home but I survived. I can't believe I attempted that. I guess a pitiful, five-year old's tears will make you do anything.

Oooops, forgot to add, I also did all this past nap time. Not a good thing to skip nap time. It was delayed about 1 1/2 hours.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

They never stop

Have I mentioned before my kids are driving me nuts?

Today the three little terds got into my purse while I was on the phone. I heard laughing and some screaming and then, rip and more ripping so I run to find them with my purse up-side-down, everything out and they are ripping up paper that was inside it. Not only that they got into the maxi-pads in there and ripped them open and Andrew had one smacked across his face, not sure why unless it was to hopefully mute his laughing.

They love to get on top of our table and stand up and swing the light fixture above their heads. All three today snuck up there and I could hear Madelyn saying "Weeeeeeeeeeee".

Andrew has claimed the play fork and spoons from the new kitchen as his and only his. Madelyn yanks them from his hands and Andrew throws himself backwards and you'd think he was in horrible pain. Yesterday the two were fighting over these so much there were injuries. Andrew ended up with scrapes beside his eye, down his cheek and near his mouth.

Nate has claimed the puzzles as his. He gets ticked off when Andrew and Madelyn can't put the puzzle pieces in the right spots or one of them takes off with the wooden board the pieces goes in. He chases them down on his hands and knees screaming and wraps his arms around them to tackle them until he gets what he wants.

Eating is always a competition here. I can split up snacks into three bowls and they steal out of their siblings bowl if they finish first or they think the other has something they want. When I put it all in one bowl to share, both hands of each are in it digging and shoving food in their mouths as fast as they can. Today I tried to share a bowl of popcorn with them. I'm pretty sure they ate more than I did individually. Makes me wonder if they are always going to compete with each other.

On the bright side, we've found one form of discipline that works with Madelyn. I started picking her up and putting her in a corner somewhere in the house when she would go into her crying spells or get into trouble and make her stay until she was done crying or I said "Are you okay now?" and she would look at me and knod. Now we can ask her when she starts up "Do you need to go to the corner?" and she knods and walks herself over and sits down until she is done with her crying fit. Love it! Wish this worked with the boys.

As for us, we finally have another showing on our house tonight. I'm working on cleaning but after I saw some homes this past weekend, I realized people don't go to the extreme like I was trying to with my house. One house had dirty dishes in the kitchen, most were not vacuumed, and several had lots of clutter. It's so true also about what the shows on TV that talk about selling homes like "Sell This House" say about neutralizing, one home I saw had wallpaper in every room. It was awful. Nice house but I can't imagine going in ripping down every wall, patching it and painting. Agh! I really hope soon someone offers to buy our home b/c I want to settle back in, not care if the kids make disasters every day, and I know Tony wants to sleep later than 5am every morning. Back to cleaning....

Friday, January 04, 2008

So sad for this family

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Wiggle Time

All three love the Wiggles. The boys have their eyes glued to the TV and Madelyn is waving her arms around in the air dancing while the Wiggles sing and dance on TV. She's definitely taking dance classes when she's old enough to enroll.
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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Referral to Now

Big difference!
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More Stupid People

I walked to my mailbox and outside was a lady, husband (Caucasion) and two girls that were of Asian decent, not sure if they were Chinese or not that said "Hello" to me while I was out there. They introduced themselves and said they had just moved in down the road and the two girls were their granddaughters. She asked me how many kids I have and I said four. I don't remember all she was saying but I was just thinking that I'm cold and want to go back inside. Somehow it came up about my kids again and I said three were one-years old. She said "I thought someone had triplets around here" assuming she had seen us in the stroller. I told her that we had twin sons and a daughter from China wondering if that would make her mention if her granddaughters were Chinese or not. She never did say but then she said to me "Oh, and I thought you had triplets" as if, and I'm translating the way it came out "oh, it's not as hard as I thought it was." I proceded to tell her our daughter was only 7 weeks younger and she said "well, at least it's not triplets."

I'm sorry but what the heck is the difference in raising triplets vs "virtual" triplets? No, I didn't have one of these kids for most of the first year of her life but for the past year come end of February we have had three the same age. They are in every aspect just like having biological triplets. Her comment really ticked me off.

Let's see how I compare to having triplets. (I'm pretty sure triplet parents have these things.)
1. 3 cribs
2. 2 Triple Strollers, a few doubles, few singles
3. Two vehicles full of carseats but they are rarely used b/c we can't go anywere with this many babies.
4. Three booster seats at the table
5. A box of diapers from BJ's of the same size only last about 1 to 1 1/2 weeks
6. 6 feet to keep socks and shoes on when trying to walk out the door
7. 3 baby swings
8. Doctor bills galore for well visits, not counting sick visits
9. Three sippy's filled everytime I pour milk
10. A shopping cart at the big Warehouse stores aren't big enough to carry my crew
11. Mom has a bad back (okay, had to throw this one in but it's true. Who wouldn't from picking up three tots all the time?)

I could keep going. Need I say more?

Last Year

Last year at this time we were a bit spastic to say the least. I was going to copy over last year's blog post but there were many. We knew our referral was on the way. We had been missed by one day in December so we were next in line. Tomorrow marks one year anniversary since we saw Madelyn's referral photo. Hard to believe it's been a year already, however; it feels like she's been here forever.

Not sure how we'll celebrate the day. Tony will have to work and Logan will go off to school and I'll be home with the three tots, normal day, but I'd like to find a way to make it special.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A little late sharing....

I put this together for grandparents this year for Christmas.

Where our kids don't make messes at when eating...


Of all places, that would be a place where kids would be expected to throw food on the floor, wall or other places. But tonight, our kids ate with manners, except for when Madelyn reached over and stole fries from Nate, and there were only four french fries on the floor and we're not even certain if those were from our kids or someone elses. There was even ketchup involved and it managed to stay on the napkin in front of them except for a little smear on the face and one tiny spot on Madelyn's sleeve.

Not only was it not messy, they were quiet. Tony and I felt like we were eating in silence even though other kids around us were loud. It was a peaceful meal.

Then after eating they played. No screaming, no stealing toys from their sibling, just pure laughter and fun.

We're going back to McDonald's more often with this crowd.