Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Dance Dance Dance

Yesterday we registered Claire and Carly in an ongoing ballet class. They are so EXCITED to get back to dancing. We found a great studio that Erin from Kidswap told us about. I have also registered myself for a once a week beginners hip hop class at the same place. I have ALWAYS wanted to try hip hop. And hopefully it will get me back into shape (along with my running!)

Cameron didn't want to take dance, so we are enrolling him in a beginners golf program. He is excited to try it out!

last night

I had such a hard time going to bed last night. I kept doing the "what ifs" in my brain. I couldn't shut it down. And so this morning I am totally drained. And it is only 7:56 in the morning. I look at Caroline and think you look so healthy, you are happy you are thriving. You feed well, you have diapers that are filled up to the max with pee and poop. How could you have something like a "duplex kidney?" How does that happen? I know in my heart that she will be fine. I just want it all to be over. It will be hard to wait for the whole month. Especially because this VCUG will be a hard test to watch as a parent. But, thankfully we can be there during the test. I want to be able to take her pain away as soon as possible.

It was also hard to be in the hospital, as there were MANY visibly sick kids there. Cliff said he saw a young family crying their eyes out. Cliff said it looked like they lost a child or a baby. The whole family outside crying. That story breaks my heart. We saw little ones walking around with IV poles and bags attached to the little babies and kids. That makes my heart break. I am so glad that I started my website to help donate to the BC Children's Hospital. What a wonderful hospital. Knowing that I am helping! That makes my heart happy! There are things I can do to help and that is powerful and makes me feel happy!

If you have any kids clothing you were going to donate and it is in good shape. Think of my cause first! Thanks! Help my clothes-O-meter to grow!


Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Duplex Kidney

We are back from Caroline's ultrasound and her follow up with the specialist. With different news than we had expected. Caroline does not not have MCDK as originally diagnosed back during my pregnancy/and after her last ultrasound done at our local hospital. Everything changed again during this ultrasound. During the scan today we found out that Caroline has something called Duplex Kidney. She has an extra ureter on her left kidney. So, mostly everybody has two, Caroline has three. She also has a cyst in or on her bladder called a uretercele.

The specialist told us that she will now need to go for a Voiding Cystourethogram or VCUG for short. It is an x ray study of the bladder as it fills up and empties. This test will let the doc know if the urine is backing up into the ureters. This condition is called "reflux." This will let him know if there are any problems with the urethra.

Caroline have a catheter put thru her urethra into her bladder. Urine is emptied and then filled up with Iodine. Then her bladder will empty onto a towel. During this process (3-4 mins but painful) x rays will be taken.

So, back to Children's we go on Monday, October 2nd for this test. Then, we will go back to the specialist and he will let us know what will happen next. Either nothing (ereters are working) no surgery. Or there is reflux and she might need antibiotics to keep away infections in her bladder or surgery on her kidney. Worst case is surgery on both her kidney and her bladder.

So, not at all what we were expecting. Now, we wait again. It sure was a long day. Thank you Mom and Dad for caring for the others while we were with Caroline. We are grateful for the support.

Monday, August 28, 2006

see Cliff in bush

those summer nights

These photos were from tonight in the backyard...where is Caroline? Sleeping in her crib soundly. We had fun tonight.

Cameron in the Canyon

Cameron at Lynn Canyon

There is my big boy, walking over the big suspension bridge in North Van. He went on Saturday with Nonna and Grandpa and the Italians who are visiting for 1 month. He had so much fun.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Date Night

Saturdayt evening as we were driving into Coquitlam IKEA on the Number 1. We saw a young couple in their maybe late teens/at oldest early 20's. It was an Acura Integra all souped up. Noisy spoiler, clean. They were having fun, she was putting on her make up. They were probably heading downtown Vancouver to cruise Robson Street and/or go for dinner and maybe to a club. They were all dolled up.

Now, here are Cliff and I, in our visibly dirty 8 seater mini van. 4 girls in the back. Our date night consisted of sending one child off to Lynn Canyon with Nonna and Grandpa for the day. In the vehicle in the car, instead of putting on mascara, I was throwing back fruit roll ups in hopes of keeping the noise level down ie. crying and fighting lol.

Instead of cranking up good tunes, we were listening to VBS cd's the whole way (and don't forget about all of the errands we ran during the day- all VBS tune)

We get to IKEA. We still have 4 girls with us. Cliff puts Caroline in the Baby Bjorn, I take Catie in the big wobbly buggy. Cliff takes Claire and Carly up the escalator (Caroline still strapped on his chest!) I manage to get Catie and I into the elevator. We meet at the Smaland and we sign Claire and Carly they go for 1 hour in the play place. That now leaves us with 2 kids. Except we cannot hold hands, I push the wobbly cart and Cliff continues on with Caroline. We actually felt like we had it pretty easy at this point. We were able to really have a fun look around this time! It was fun.

Buzzer goes off. Our hour of Date Night is over. Off to get Claire and Carly. They had a blast, they shared what they did in there!

I wish I could have gone in there. I remember back to when my parents would take us to the ballroom in Richmond IKEA. We loved that. I sure hope that this is how my girls felt tonight. We purchased our goods with all 4 girls.

You know how you freshen up your make up on a date in the washroom, well on my date I had Claire and Carly join me. They both went to the bathroom. I didn't put on lipstick. I just looked in the mirror and saw an older me looking back in the mirror. Used my wet hands to smooth my hair a bit! It was kind of crazy on my date night. I totally looked like "a Mom" lol. Out the door we went. Met back with Cliff, Caroline and Catie.

We loaded into the car, and headed back home. Instead of chatting with each other like on a date, we chatted with the girls to keep them awake. We managed to keep 2/4 awake. lol. Home we got. No good night kiss from my date. I got kisses from the girls lol. And kisses from Cameron when we finally got home late that night.

I am sure the couple that we saw in the Integra had a good night. I remember doing things like that with Cliff 10 years ago, and it was FUN...but you know what last night was fun too.

But, a ride in a hot car is sometimes fun too! Cliff and I talked about one day buying a hot sports car for our "second ride." Mini van for the family, and a sports car for us when the kids grow up and leave the nest.

When they are all out on date nights!

Can you imagine the fun they will have!

Can you imagine all of the wrinkles and grey hairs we will have!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

And I thought Thursday was busy?! Who was I kidding?

Today I must say was one of the most busy days in a long time! (Well since Thursday lol) I was up with all of the kids at 6:30. I gave Cliff the treat of sleeping in til almost 9 am. I got everybody ready.

I took Claire and Carly for their back to school haircuts. They look so cute.

Cameron went to the Capilano Suspension Bridge with his grandparents for the day.

I came home, fed Caroline and we went to the bank to deposit some cheques, then we went to the Tim Horton's drive thru for treats.

Then, we went into Cloverdale to go to Turkey's Party makers to go get stuff for the "triple b" aka as BBB. Big Birthday Bash on the long weekend coming up. Cliff stayed in the car with all 4 of the girls, and I got in there and worked my shopping magic. We are having "It's a Monkey's Birthday" for Cameron who is now 7, Carly who is now 4 and Catie who will be 2 very soon. I got brown plates, yellow napkins, a large 7, 4, and 2 plastic numbers. 3 yellow banana's 5 brown balloons and 5 yellow balloons. Cynthia is making an awesome cake for me, and some cupcakes. And, I rented a large 15-15-15 bouncy house for all of the kids who will be attending. After all, don't all monkeys jump on their beds? Ours do! lol. So, after some searching for the perfect monkey pinyata...I was out of there. Almost 12 noon.

Caroline started to fuss, so we headed back home to feed, make some sandwiches on the run. Headed back out. This time we headed for Payless shoes for the BOGO sale. For Claire and Carly. Spent 92 dollars on 2 pairs of cute boots and runners.

We also went to Canadian Tire. That was really fun actually. Wanted to see what was a vailable. We had Catie and Caroline in the big cart, and then Claire and Carly each had little was a fun little wagon train throughout the store! They had fun, and they listened. We Finally bought paint for the c a r o l i n e letters for the wall that I made. I promise I will show the process that I went through to make them! They are going to be great. We also bought a Canvas White paint for out bathroom, and many other things. Yippee! Cannot wait to have that painted. It will freshen up the joint! I sure needs it.

Then, we went I forget where...oh yes. To this awesome consignment store called Little Critter Outfitters in Clova. I got 9 pieces of brandname clothing there for Claire, and a couple of pieces for Carly for school. I used my stamp card with $45 free, and they had a great sale on and spent $36 dollars! 9 pieces of Old Navy, Gymboree etc. It was awesome. That felt good.

We then came home. Ate a bit, and then we headed out to IKEA. There we got bedding for us, some new shoe racks and a shower curtain, a roll of paper for the kids to draw on, plastic cutlery...I think that is it. We got back into the car at 8 pm.

Got home, unloaded the van. Catie was sleeping, Claire and Carly were very sleepy but awake. And got them all into bed. Cameron was downstairs sleeping at Nonna and Grandpa's. He had a lovely day and really liked the suspension bridge.

Then, we left Caroline home with the in-laws, and headed out to Wal*Mart. Our final destination. We got party stuff...awesome stuff. More stuff and I picked up a 300 count set of white sheets! We have not had new sheets since we got married back in '98. We had boring beige. They were wearing out. So now we have nice crisp white soft sheets. Diapers x 2, wipes, products, more products. More stuff. Cards, gifts etc. $300 dollars later...packed up the vehicle and headed home. We walked back through the door at 10:35 pm. No joke. I fed Caroline who had cried when we were away. She is now settling in for the night with Cliff.

Well not really, she is crying now. This is where I finish up my day. On the couch feeding her. It is 11:18...I guess the bathroom will not be painted tonight like we had planned lol.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

busy busy

It has been awhile, I have been having a very busy week. I am back to running again. I am going back to Jazzercise again. I have lots on the go. Thank goodness for the In-Laws and parental units help on the days we need the extra set of hands. It is nice to have family around.

Yesterday, we went running. I had fed Caroline up until 6 pm. We got home around 8. Caroline was sleeping. Into the crib she went, and guess what. She stayed asleep until I awoke her this morning just before 6 am. I was engorged and needed to feed her. What a great little sleeper we have.

We have had cousin Nicole over for a couple of nights too. She has a little dog Bruno (a pug) and they are FACINATED by him. Poor Bruno, he is not used to all of that attention.

I have a million and one things to do in the house, and for the kids to get them ready for back to school. Thankfully my Mom sewed up a great little school bag (drawstring) for Claire. She loves it. Thank you Nannie.

Well, the laundry folding is calling me.

Monday, August 21, 2006



Welcome to Bloggerland Amber! I look forward to catching up to you this way! Yipee!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Italian BBQ today

Here is one photo of me with a few of the kids...Cameron, Claire and Carly. Caroline was being passed around the party. Catie didn't want to sit on my lap. She said NO! lol.

My MIL's cousin's and spouse are in from Italy for about 4 weeks. We had a nice time with the family.

Carly's birthday cake

Here is Carly and her birthday bling ring, and her marshmallow and chocolate cake made for her by Nonna. *that was by Carly's request. It was very yummy. As you can tell from her photo she was very pleased. Tomorrow she is off to spend the day with my Mom and Dad for some 1 on 1. I know she cannot wait.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Happy 4th Birthday Carly

Carly is 4 today!

We love you Carly.

Mommy and Daddy REALLY enjoyed spending the morning with you. Breakfast together at de Dutch for chocolate sprinkle pancakes, and then shopping in the Fort together. We think you spent your birthday money from Oma and Opa really wisely. You picked a glass butterfly teaseat, an Emerald bling ring and your little lady bug lip gloss is so cute. You also picked out some wonderful books at Wendels. I know you really enjoyed having that banana gelato too. Happy birthday to a wonderful daughter with the beautiful brown eyes, huge smile and huge hugs.

Hard to believe that 4 years ago today, you were small like Caroline and we hoped and wished for a wonderful little daughter, and you have turned out even better than we could have imagined.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Happy Friday

Wow, it has been a busy week. Hardly any time to update on our life. The In-Laws are back from Vegas. They had a great holiday with the Italian cousins. They are all coming over for a big bbq on Sunday. I am looking forward to that. I am even going to have a glass of wine for the first time in way over a year. Yummy.

This week, well it went very fast. Caroline is starting to laugh when I laugh. Cameron lost his big front tooth (left) it fell out when he was eating his lunch today. Tooth fairy has to come for a visit tonight.

My Carly turns 4 tomorrow. Cliff and I will take her out for breakfast, and then shopping. Spend some time just with her. We are looking forward to that. This is her last sleep as a sweet little 3 year old.

Cliff and I got back to running tonight. We both signed up for the 5K clinic at the Running Room. And, it felt GREAT to get back. Wow. I forgot how much I needed and loved running. The last run I did was almost 1 year ago in September of 2005. When I found out I was preggers with Caroline.

Tonight I also went over to my cousin Andrea's house for tea and yummy banana bread. It was delicious, and she sent a loaf home with me. Thank you for that. Thank you for the lovely night.

Well, I am beat. It is late. Good night.


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Merriman's

The Merriman's

Yay! The Merriman's have a "Grown Up"site. Have a look! Bookmark this site because Ben is so ADORABLE. Well, actually the whole family is! Congrats.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

A Day in my Life: Tuesday

The alarm goes off every weekday morning around 4:45 am, that is for Cliff. He kissed me goodbye this morning around 5:30 a.m. I went back to sleep.

Today I got up around 7:15 am which is a sleep in these days. Usually on school days (not summer vacation) we are all up around 6/6:30 a.m.
Cameron was up first at 7:30, then Catie and then Claire. They all played lego whilst I got ready. By getting ready I first make our bed. Then I grab towel and hit the showers. A quick fast shower every morning. I find when I shower and dress and put on a bit of make up I feel better.
Carly is up. 7:35 or so.

I walk into the living room to open up the blinds and Catie is in the exersaucer. I yank her out. Oh goody. I have many more episodes of this today. Reminds me of all of the kids before who would try out the exersaucer again! It think that is cool that my 5, and I lent the saucer out at one time and it was given to me in '99 from another Mom friend of my Mom's. In total we have had 7 kids use it, and no doubt there is still good life left in it!

7:45 a.m. Check emails etc.

Cameron already fought with Claire over her using his "wheels" from the Lego. They were fighting. I broke up the fight.

I ask Claire and Carly to go get dressed, put away pj's and make beds.

8:00 a.m.Collect laundry, take it downstairs. Catie slides downstairs and helps me there. Sort laundry from yesterday. Pull out and wash Darks. Catie helps me load some.

Back upstairs, girls are dressed. Go check their beds. Not made. I make them. Catie comes in. I change her diaper and get her dressed. Send her into the playroom to get her shirt to put on. She took it out and brought it to me earlier. I also found clothing that needs washing so I bring to our room to the laundry basket. Too bad I missed getting these items in the wash.

8:11 a.m. Caroline still sleeping. Good, time to throw on the pork loin for dinner into the crock. Claire handed out the vitamins for the kids.

Get waffles onto the table. Get kids to clean up table as best as they can.

I make juice, and all 4 big kids stir the juice with wisk. One after another. (Juice as stirred on first stir but that is OK they had fun doing it!)

Unloaded dishwasher whilst kids were eating. Loaded breakfast stuff in. Had a glass of water and my vitamin.

Go onto Kidswap and answer a few posts. I need to eat. Caroline is still sleeping.

Send Carly to the washroom, as I see she needs to go. Pour a cup of milk for Catie.

8:50 a.m. Catie and I switch over the wash to the dryer. I start a baby load of laundry. Carry Catie up the stairs, but I stop at the mirror and make faces with her in the mirror.

Carly comes out of the washroom. I make sure she wiped, flushed and wiped and washed hands. Give her Barbie purse back lol.

I eat a banana. Sort of, Catie eats a chunk of it. Off to sweep the kitchen.

9:00 Caroline is awake. Got her out of her crib, and Catie off of her crib rails. Took her to our bedroom to change her diaper. Carry Caroline in my right arm, and take Catie off the bed with my left arm. Walk to playroom.

9:15 am. Feed Caroline, burp. Carly requests to hold Caroline. I oblige. We watch the Magic School bus. Still listening for my laundry to stop.

Caroline into the exersaucer, and then Claire spun her around, so into a time out she went. She apologized and she went back to the playroom. Go to internet for a few minutes.

10:00 a.m. Snack time for the kids. They all went and washed hands, I prepared and then gave them vanilla yogurt with a sprinkle of cranberry granola. I had a bowl too when Caroline was happy in the exersaucer. Ran downstairs to the laundry. Pulled out one load with Claire's help. Claire helped me load up the dryer with the baby load. She started the dryer for me. Came upstairs. Searched for Catie's missing sippy cup. I spied it, Cameron found it and put it back in the fridge. Catie done, wiped her down, let her loose lol. Washed snack dishes. I smell dinner in the crock. Smells yummy already. Caroline is crying now. Tend to her now. Kids outside to play in the yard. Nice day out there. 10:20 am.

Changed Caroline's poopy diaper, had Catie help me lol. Sat down on the couch to feed her. Watched some of the Mom Show on Life Network. Just finished now. 11:25 am. She is in her crib. Checked on the kids in the yard. Everything is good. Two kids have come and gone to the washroom in this time.

Thinking about lunch, and I am going to go fold my dark load of laundry. I will also check on the other load in the dryer. Just got back. Caroline started crying. Changed her diaper and changed her outfit as there was a bit of poop on it. Ran up and down the stairs to get the laundry upstairs, then downstairs as I needed to bring more dirty clothes downstairs. Caroline still crying. Will need to feed her once more. Checked on the kids they are digging up the space under the swings. Catie also had a poopie diaper. Changed that and then washed my hands. I asked the kids to then put the dirt back. They listened. Washed Catie's hands. Folded the dark laundry which is sitting on my bed ready to put away. Also need to fold the baby laundry now! On my bed also.

It is now 12:01 and no lunch. Stuff happens. I am going to try asap. Fed Caroline a little, Carly held Caroline while I made lunch. Managed to get lunch on the table and finished by 12:30. They had organic tortilla chips, pineapple (canned) fresh straberries. Some had wiener, some had cheese some had left over salad. I had tomato/red pepper/feta in balsamic/EVOO salad and a few crackers to dip into dressing. Caroline sat on my lap whilst we ate. Put her in the saucer whilst I got to the clean up of first Catie, and then the table. I took Catie to her crib for a nice long nap (I hope lol) and then I put away the dry dishes from morning snack and then washed and put away lunch dishes. The three older kids went back to play. Pulled frozen tortilla rounds out of the freezer for dinner and found taco shells in pantry for dinner. Crock pot smells awesome. I miss Cliff and wonder what time he will be home tonight.

Carly just came in the house with no shirt. Apparently the "Guys" meaning Cameron and Claire got dirt on her shirt. I asked her to go get it and I would clean it off. I did, I banged it on the porch rails and asked the kids not to put dirt on her shirt, and asked them to put the dirt pots on the grass and not on the deck.

12:47 going to sweep the floor from lunch and then hopefully feed and settle Caroline so she will go down for a nap too. It is nice with both youngers nap at the same time. Caroline is now in bed, awake. I hope she naps.

It is 1:15. I now have Carly watching Carebears on TV. The two olders playing outside. The house is quiet. Going to go get the bucket and wash down the tables/chairs and any yucky walls or doors/knobs/switch plates that need washing up. Shouldn't take too long.

I chatted with my Mom for a few minutes. I also chatted with Cliff for a few minutes. He called to say hi. That was nice.

Went downstairs to get the bucket, and Caroline was crying again. So, I fed her again and finally she is SLEEPING in her crib.

It is 2:09. Checked on the kids and they are making dirt birthday cake and having a birthday party. I have my bucket and now I am going to do my wipe downs. I am sure Catie will be up shortly! Then it will be snack time! Yikes. Where has the day gone?

2:30 Tidy up the playroom. Clean up is done of surfaces/knobs/doors/switched and some door trim with obvious dirty spots!...always dirty on the lower 1/3 rd of the doors...why might that be. Cleaned up. All 4 older kids are in the house. They are done making dirt cakes. They have all washed their hands. Going to put a movie on for them. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I will make them popcorn for a snack/treat. Folded the baby laundry. Not put away yet. Caroline is in the room. Do not want to disturb her.

In the last hour I brought the bucket back downstairs, looked at more laundry to wash for tomorrow. Got some cheese out for tonight from the downstairs fridge. Washed the popcorn dishes, picked the newspaper off the front stoop. Checked on the kids as Cameron and Claire went outside and Catie and Carly are back watching Charlie and the CC. Caroline is still sleeping. She is having a nice relaxing nap. I went to my favourite site Kidswap again. I ate a handful of popcorn and some nuts and dried fruits. Answered some emails and now here. It is now almost 4 pm. Wow, this day is going fast.

Caroline woke up at 4:30. Straight to the exersaucer as I was just was about to cut the tomatoes for the tacos. She needs a diaper change.

4:44 pm. I just finished opening up the taco shell box, cut open the soft shell package. Layed out shells for the oven. I will heat up the oven when Cliff walks through the door. He is expected to be in a few minutes late tonight. Hopefully within the next half hour. I read the local paper. I precut the tomatoes and grated the cheese for the pork tacos tonight. I also cut up some raw brocolli to snack on. They are all thirsty so a cup or two for the water colour. I also gave the kids a mini cheese to tide them over. They have all come into the house now. Now the crazy day begins. It always begins right before Cliff comes home. I also made some of that Nestea Iced tea in a glad premixed for Cliff and I, so when he walks through the door he has something to drink if he wants. If he doesn't we will have it with dinner. That is my thank you for his hard work during the day.

I am going to go change Caroline's diaper, and check Catie's diaper and make sure all of the kids wash their hands for dinner time. Caroline is now crying and the exersaucer is getting banged around. Time to get busy again. Oh, only 3 and a bit more hours until bedtime of 8 pm. It is a long day today lol. So far, 9 almost 10 hours with the kids by myself.

All kids accounted for and all staying out of trouble which is marvelous. I think they are tired out from making so many mudcakes etc. So much fun to be a kid. Remember when summer lasted forever!

I brushed my teeth. Went to the bathroom to freshen up. Made sure again that all of the "cake makers" hands were washed and ready for dinner. Check, they are.

Cameron, Claire (holding Caroline) and Catie are watching cyberchase in TV. Carly is in her bedroom playing dollies quietly. She needs time away from the others as she gets tired of being around everybody and wants quiet.

I am going to go relieve Claire of holding Caroline and feed her, so that I can eat when dinnertime rolls around. I sure hope Cliff gets home soon so we can eat before 6 pm.

Cliff got home at 5:25 pm. I was sitting on the couch with all 5 kids. I was feeding Caroline. Oven is warming up for the shells. Looks like we are on plan. Cliff is washing up as I type this. Kids are all hungry and all of their finger nails will need clipping before bed as they are very dirty from cake making lol.

We didn't eat dinner as a family tonight. That bugs me. Usually we do. Tonight Caroline wanted dinner first. She ate first. The kids ate 2 taco's each. Catie had one. Cliff ate with the kids. I ate alone, but Cliff kept me company. Caroline stayed in Cliff's arm. Nothing has been cleaned up. It is 6:44 pm. Claire and Carly are in the tub. Two down, two to go. I am going to go clean the dinner mess now, and pack some up for Cliff's lunch tomorrow.

7:12 - Cliff bathed all of the kids (minus Caroline) and then we treated the kids to a cookie on the deck. Cameron keeps showing me his very loose front tooth. He should just yank it out but he won't. I did the cleaning whilst he did the bathing. Dishes into the dishwasher, hand washed the pans. I started the dishwasher as it was full to the gills with dishes. I also changed the water in my vase from the flowers Cliff brought me home on Saturday! They still look beautiful. It was nice to get flowers. That is rare, but I know he loves me whether he buys me flowers or not!

Carly helped herself to water, and spilled, and then cleaned it up with the proper cloth. Cliff is working on something from work with Caroline in his arms, and Claire asking many questions. Cameron is in his room. Catie helped Carly clean up the water. Next is tooth brushing, and then bedtime for the kids.

Caroline is squacking, and the kids need to brush and then settle in for quiet time before bedtime. Hopefully before 8 pm tonight.

Carly painted toothpaste on her eyelids like eyeshadow lol. I just sprayed down the main bathroom again. It always amazes me how far the spritz from a toothbrush can travel. Times that by 4 kids! Wowweee!

7:37 time to kiss the kids goodnight. Start dishwasher again because Catie turned it off.

On the way back to the kitchen I picked up a couple of straggly toys in the hallway. Put then back in the playroom, and cleaned up what didn't get put away this evening.

Catie is protesting as per usual. I know they are all tired. I hope they sleep soon. 7:44 pm.

Caroline needs a feed. I will take my position on the couch for the next few hours I would say. I am hearing monkeys in the girls bedroom. I hope they are not jumping!

It took a few visits to the girls room to settle them. They finally did. They fell asleep around 8:15 or so.

I have had Caroline feeding and playing about since 8 until now. I also talked on the phone with my friend Lisa.

Had some cookies and milk as a treat tonight. Caroline is still awake and it is 9:37 pm. Hopefully she will go down for the night. All on her schedule.

Well, Caroline stopped feeding and settled in Cliff's arms. It is 10:45 pm. All 5 kids down to bed. Dishwasher is unloaded (thanks Cliff) and now I am going to get ready for bed. I was having the nods on the couch.

Good night. Tomorrow comes quickly.

Shoot, I just remembered about the dirty fingernails that need trimming. I will put that on my list for tomorrow when get to kiss them all good morning and start all over again. Ah, the life of a stay at home mom to 5 fabulous kids.

10:48 pm.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Monday Madness

Today was a really busy day for me. We had one kid up at 4:30 crying (Carly) and Catie woke up one hour later crying (Catie) Carly settled back in, Catie would not, so she ended up in bed with me. We all got up around 7:30 a.m. which was nice. Waffles for breakfast. Then play. We all went about our day. At 11:01 am. The doorbell rings. It rings twice. No, it wasn't the postman for your information lol. It was a roofer. Yes an unsolicited roofer. He was going to offer his roofing services (yes this house lost a lot of shingles in the winter winds) and when he was backing up to park in our driveway. He rolled into my FIL's car. Side-swiped it. Took the hubcap off, a big long scrape/dents on the drivers side. Nice. Well. Atleast he came to tell us. He said, is that your car? I said no. That is my FIL's car. He said is he home. I said nope. They are in Vegas until Thursday. So, he apologized and was really embarrased. And told me he was embarrassed. I was just glad that nobody got hurt. I hope my In-Laws win the slots/jackpot. They won't be too pleased.

So, that was my morning. Sort of. As you all know I am trying a new cleaning system. I have modified my own system and it works awesome. My house is always clean, and I never have to clean on the weekends. I do this so that my dear hardworking husband catches a break. He works too hard. I feel bad for him.

Monday's clean up schedule:

Get up, strip beds take bedding and laundry to washing machine. Start my loads.
Clean toilets, counters and sinks til sparkly.
Clean stove top rings and pans and replace foil liners.
Dust whole house in 10 mins.
Vac whole house in 10 mins.
Wash all of the hard floors (mopping)
Make all beds and cribs with clean linens fresh from the laundry.
Clean out recycling bin and sort and put back
Bring up toilet paper from the garage and replace stocks in bathrooms

That is about it. Throw in many diaper changes, activities, lunch snacks. Feeds for Caroline. And get salad ready for the bbq. It made for a very busy day.

Cliff also pulled out the exersaucer and washed it down for Caroline.

I also wrote a thank you card or two, and walked to the mailbox to mail them out on time. Talked to Cynthia, and to my Mom briefly. Tried to call my cousin Andrea, but her line was busy this evening. I am looking forward to watching the end of Hell's Kitchen tonight. The finale. It should be awesome. Thank you Cynthia for your phonecall reminder. I actually wrote it down on the calendar!!

Time to feed Caroline.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

From an email I received today

Hi Cathy! You knew many things would change once you became a mother, but did you expect your vocabulary would be one of them? Here are some common words that may have taken (or will take) on new meaning thanks to Caroline:

Amnesia: The condition that enables a woman who has gone through labor to make love again.

Feedback: The inevitable result when your baby doesn't appreciate the pureed carrots.Full name: What you call your child when you're really mad at him.

Grandparents: The people who think your children are wonderful even though they're sure you're not raising them right.

Hearsay: What toddlers do when anyone mutters a dirty word.

Impregnable: A woman whose memory of labor is still vivid.

Independent: How we want our children to be as long as they do everything we say.

Ow: The first word spoken by children with older siblings.

Puddle: A small body of water that draws other small bodies wearing dry shoes and socks into it.

Show off: A child who is more talented than yours.

Two minute warning: When your baby's face turns red and she begins to make those familiar grunting noises.

Monopoly to Property

Cool Cats are Copy Cats!

I have starting my own trading adventure just like Kyle MacDonald did. He traded up to a house. Check out my site here for more information!

I am trading one box of Monopoly. Wish me luck!
Be sure to bookmark my site and check back often!


Friday, August 11, 2006

ballerina's (and one boy)

Yesterday we had my little sis Amy over with her boyfriend Tyler and his daughter Kayla over for dinner. It was really fun. We had homemade Mac and Cheese, sausages, Chilliwack corn and beans. For Dessert I made Jello Jigglers for the kids, and Amy and Tyler brought awesome stuff from Fratelli's Bakery on Commercial Drive. There were delicious Cannolli's and two other kinds. They brought bday presents for Cameron and for Carly. (and un-birthday gifts for the other kids not celebrating this month. Anyways. Kayla (who is going into grade 1) So she is right in between Cameron and Claire brought her ballet stuff over, and our girls put on their outfits. My Mom aka Murrayville's Mom aka Nannie sewed up the tu-tu's for all of the girls in the family. They sure had fun. They were all dancing to the Nutcracker Suite last night. Just thought I would add Cameron was very happy to pose with all of the girls! Nice to have you 3 over.

Daddy's Little Girl

Here are Daddy and Caroline having a sleep on the couch just a few minutes ago. Can you see her smiling here!? Goodness how I love them both.

Caroline's Ear Print

OK, I FINALLY have documented "nursing ear." I have had this cute little ear print with each of our five kids, but finally I took one of Caroline's little wee ear.

Isn't that adorable~

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Mrs. Cool?

I have realized this year, that this will be the first year that I actually will be able to go out and buy some clothes for me! I am done with my family. 5 kids is where we stop.

But then...FEAR.

Can I ever be cool again? Can I suit the trends? What would I look good in? I need help from What Not to Wear on TLC. Are these clothes kid friendly? I don't want to have to rely on drycleaning! I need wash and wear! I have 5 kids. Remember! lol.

And, with that thought I am like what do I buy? What is cool Mom style? I have no idea? What is cool for a Mom of 5? I remember when I was in my 20's. I would know how to dress, the right accessories, hair and make up. Now suddenly, I feel dowdy and so uncool. How does that happen? Am I uncool because I am a Mom? or uncool because I just don't have time to keep up with the "trends" and would the trends be even suitable for me because I am turning 35 in October? Can I stay tidy and kept?

I do know that I have not owned a nice pair of shoes for about 7 years. I wear flip flops through all the seasons. (No time to lace or zip up shoes/boots) I do wear my runners when I run however.

Clothing: I wear hand me downs (but they are usually really nice ones from my sisters!) Or, from Reitmans or Old Navy. But most of the time I try to wear a skirt etc. I try not to wear sweats. To me when I wear sweats I feel like a big frumpy mess. So, I try to look nice for when my hubby gets home. But, in the postpartum period. I have hardly anything that fits still. I have very little to choose from. And for outer wear, such as coats etc. I have been telling Cliff I am going to get a coat for years and years. And, I still haven't.

Undergarments: Oh, undergarments aka lingerie I think it is called?! I remember that sexy stuff! I remember back in my teens and 20's I had matching undergarments that were cute and pretty and sexy. I had a set for a day! Now it is ugly nursing bras that are old (some as old as 7 years - yik!) and yucky maternity gonch (I have thongs at least - how very racy of me, especially with my cottage cheese but lol) I have since burned my granny pants from the after birth! I will NEVER need those again! * Insert Hallelujah chorus here

I have some nice clothes waiting for me in the closet, but I need to lose the balance of my pregnancy weight still, and I don't want to go and buy stuff because I don't want to wear this size for much longer. But seriously it could be months before I see more changes in my body. And it will never be the same as BK *Before Kids. What to do?

I wear make up from Wal*Mart and not from MAC anymore. I
I try to get my hair done every 8-10 weeks, and in the past bk (before kids) I would freak at the sight of the "slightest roots." Now, I am like OK, the roots are not that bad. I can live with that. That is why there are hair clips so I can pull the hair back lol. Thank goodness for hair bands too! And I used to buy salon quality products until the first and second times that my kids would "use" my products and I have nothing left. I learned my lessons!So, drugstore brands for me from now on.

Shaving? Well I get my regular waxings, I shave every day. But not a complete job like I used to. I noticed hairs where I have never seen hairs before. Thankfully my Aunty is an Electrologist! Yay Aunty Madeleine! I am going for my first zappings on Saturday!

Accesories? What are those? I don't even wear my rings from my wedding. They still don't fit. And goodness they are "gold" and not platinum or white gold that is in right now.

Now that I will not be having any more kids, will I become cool again? Do I dare go back that way? Will I look silly?

So, if you know of a stylist/tv show or somebody that could help me, please pass my name on...I have lots of bad "before photos" and I am hoping to see an "after photo" that I just love. I need a Mommy Make Over.

I need help! Anybody?!

Mrs. Uncool

I want to be the Cool Cat I once was?! Is that even possible?

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Body Language

Hmmm. I wonder what she is saying without saying it at all. Can you read Catie's body language?


(this is now Catie's favourite word!)

Miss Mae and Dolly Baby

Here is Caroline and Carly's Dolly together this afternoon.
Look how big she is getting!

Before Bed

This photo was taken by Cliff tonight before bedtime! Happy Summer.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Happy BC Day today!

Today, I tried out a new cleaning regime. Last week I tried a new way of cleaning, and this week it was and so far I quite like it. Especially the email reminders. Today I blessed my house in less than an hour, and now it looks amazing. I have to say I also love my Vileda twist mop! That thing rocks.

After my hour of cleaning, I got ready to go out with Caroline to go visit with Cynthia. We had a nice visit, and got to chat for quite awhile. I even had lunch made by her awesome husband Mike. He made us awesome grilled cheese in the "snack master." And, I got to love up Ben...he is so adorable. Kisses to Ben.

I got home, fed Caroline. We had BBQ burgers and an awesome salad with mixed greens, nuts, goats cheese, strawberries and strawberry vinagrette. Yummy.

Cameron went to Nonna B's house, and helped clean up there. And, the three middle gals went out for a walk with Cliff to go get an ice cream at the local coffee shop. They had fun, and boy were they tuckered right out.

Last night Claire had a nightmare. She wouldn't settle, so Claire slept in our bed. She was so adorable. She was so comfy. I told her that I had the same thing happen to me, and in the same bed even. She thought that was interesting that Mommy had the same problem. She was scared somebody was under her bed. I told her that I would try to call out to my Mom and Dad (but I was too scared) and so I leaped over the "shadow" to safety of my parents. Mom? Do you remember that? How did you comfort me? I cannot remember. I just remember being really freaked. Tonight she was scared again.

Cliff and I seriously need a king size bed. Imagine Cliff, Claire, Caroline and myself in the Queen size bed this a.m. it was pretty crowded, but certainly a memory!

Yesterday, the most funny thing happened to us. The three kids (Cam, Claire and Carly) stood up to us. They banded together one by one, with arms crossed across their chests at the fireplace. And said all said no, we want to go out to play. I started to laugh (but I looked away) and then Cliff cracked too. Then all control went out the window. The kids won they ran out the door, down the new patio stairs and went to play. Yikes. It was funny at the time, but then the night went from bad to worse. Too much to write about tonight.

My goodness. Thankfully tonight went off without a hitch. Only Catie was up late in her crib "protesting" but she finally broke and went to bed.

We hope your holiday day was fun too!


Farm BBQ

Here I am, with Cameron resting on me as we enjoyed the dancers on the stage!

Yesterday we were invited to an annual farm bbq by my BIL Nick and his wife, my Sister (*who btw will be making me an Aunty in 10 weeks!)

They had the Austria Club dancers, and hip hop dancers and there were about 300 people to the farm for a night of entertainment and bbq. We went with the 5 kids for about 2 hours. The kids had a good time. And, I got to rub my sister's belly. It was neat to feel her belly because I guess that is what my belly felt like to other people. I just wonder who is in that baby belly. She looks so good. It is so exciting.

Thanks for the invite! We look forward to next year.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Super Summary

Today we had a nice day. I had cleaned the whole house from top to bottom during the week so that I could relieve us all of house chores this weekend. It has worked out really nice, and I plan on keeping that up. Last night we ran errands. We went to Wal*Mart and then we tried shopping at Save On Foods. Well, I can still tell you I am a Safeway girl still. I found myself getting frustrated because I do not know the layout of the land there. When I go shopping I go quickly and systematically. Not last night. Shopping took way too long. Anyways we got it done, and really I found the prices to be quite comparable. There was more selection at Save On for a larger family.

As for today, I fed Caroline this morning. Got ready. Cliff took the girls to the market for veggies and fruit. Then we left some kids with in-laws and took our son Cameron to Fort Langley. He bought a robot and a periscope and a little rubber chicken that lays an egg at the Fort Toy Store. I highly recommend that store. Patrick, the owner is awesome. Cameron also purchased two wonderful books from Wendels bookstore. This is our annual trip. This birthday Cameron also wrote his own thank you cards for his gifts. We will do that with each of our kids as they learn to write. I believe in hand written mailed thank yous. I want our kids to have that love too. We then stopped in at a gelato place for yummy cones, and then headed home as Caroline got a bit fussy.

Tonight I didn't have to cook as my in-laws cooked an AWESOME dinner. Nonna B and Aunty Naida came for dinner too, and brought gifts for Cameron and Carly. It was great.

All of 5 the kids are in bed! Yippee.


Thursday, August 03, 2006

Green Goodness!

Here is an 11" cucumber from our garden! How do I know it is 11"? Well, I measured it!

It is huge and has great girth. I put the cherries beside the 'cumber to show you just how large it really is! Cannot wait to take a bite of this one! Yummy! Gardening is really fun don't you agree!

3 month shot of Caroline

This was taken yesterday in her crib during a "nap." as you can see she has 3/4 length sleeper sleeves. This is a 14 lb. or 6 month sleeper which she is busting out of! Too bad you cannot see her toes...they were curled under because they are too tight. I have washed these and put them away now! She is getting so big!

beautiful baby chub

This is Caroline in her birthday suit ;D taken tonight before her bath! Loving the chub!

Birthday Boy Cameron

Cameron's cake, 7 crazy candles and one for good luck! And blowing out his candles and enjoying his special day. He loved all of the cards, gifts and phone calls for his birthday! He wanted pizza tonight with cheezy dip. His wish was granted.

16 Pounds of Baby!

I took Caroline onto the scale, and I gained 16 lbs!

16 lbs!!

I knew she was getting bigger, but wow! At her last appointment (at her 2 month shots in July) she was 11 lbs. 9 oz! Caroline was 3 months yesterday! She is a chubby little lover bum. I love her so! I just know she has a lot of weight to her, and my arms get tired when I carry her around all day!

She is only 3 pounds from where Cameron was at 4 months! I swear she is going to meet that goal! Wow. She looks like her brother, and is following in his footsteps already. It is very neat to see that!

Habby Bird Day 2 Yew

Happy 7th Birthday
to our Number One Son Cameron!

Born: August 3rd 1999

7 lbs. 1 oz. at 7:02 pm!

You Rock our World and we LOVE you! We hope you have a wonderful day! We know there are so many good things in store for you! Keep on Rocking and Reading!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Caroline is 3 months old today

Seriously, Caroline is 3 months old today! Wow. Her infancy has gone way too fast. Today, Caroline weighs probably around 14 pounds I would think, she is going through a nursing frenzy. I have my top up to feed her very often. She is having her 3 month growth spurt! My chest feels it that is for sure. Wow. Her extra feedings are increasing my milk supply. I think that is so awesome. She is a great little feeder that is for sure. She takes after her brother in more than just her looks. We call her our little butterball because she is bursting out of 6 month sleepers already. The arms look 3/4 length, and her toes curl under the tightness of her footed sleepers! I cannot believe it! Wow.

She has been rolling like crazy. From her back to her tummy. I actually put her down for a "nap" of sorts and I came back to check on her and she rolled completely over and onto her tummy. She smiles very big at me and I love that. She is really noticing her hands, and I wonder when she will notice her feet...if she can get them up to her face/mouth with her chub may be hard to do! I know Cameron layed down more because he was so middle heavy he could hardly sit when his little friends were sitting up.

Caroline is being loved up by her doting siblings! They all want to hold her, but they end up picking her up and walking with her. Carly heard her crying and picked her up and walked her all the way downstairs to find me in the laundry room! Yikes. Thankfully we have been practising and working on proper holding techniques! I ask them to hold her lightly, but they really hold her too tightly sometimes. That is why she has to be strong! To fend off her siblings that love her so.

This month we will head to the BC Childrens' Hospital to take her for an ultrasound and a check up with the specialist to see what is going on with her kidney/s. I don't feel worried at all. She is very healthy and expect her appointment to run rather smooth.


Wow, tomorrow my dear Cameron boy turns 7! I remember being pregnant with him, and we had such a busy August long weekend back in '99! Full of activities to do. And now, it is 7 years later and we are almost at the long weekend and full of activities! It seems as though I blinked and these years flew by. I look at Cameron all lean and lanky and so interesting and fun to be around. I get to have these marvelous conversations with him now! I love that.

Tomorrow I have to change my intro on my blog to Cathy, Mom to 5 kids 7 and under!

We have a lot of birthday action coming up in our family. Cameron 7 tomorrow, Carly turns 4 August 19th and Catie turns 2 on September 9th, and the day before that Cliff turns 34! Then in October I turn 35! On the 7th. Did you know that I have been sharing my birthday now for 31 almost 32 years! I was born on my Dad's birthday, and my little sis Amy was born on my 3rd birthday. My Mom still has my little Fisher Price barn from the 70's that I received the day Amy was born! Now, my kids play with it. Isn't that cool!