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Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Top 12 Favorites


Several popular bloggers (named above) are hosting a Top 10 photos of your kids for 2010 and I thought this would be a great way to wrap up our 2010 blog before I turn it into a book, so here goes....

I can't say these are necessarily my favorites or the best quality of the bunch, but it was sooo hard to pick just 10 (so I didn't, I picked 12 and still left off some photos I love).... anyways,

Make sure you check out  From Here to EternityClick It Up A Notch,a sorta fairytale, The Naptime Momtog, and The Paper Mama . 

I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year and can't wait to see what all my favorite bloggers have in store for 2011!!!!

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Another After Christmas Moment

Cody takes a last look at the singing Christmas toys before they are put away for another year

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

There is so much to HATE about cooking....

My Mom did it... every night... for as long as I can remember....  she was a super busy Mom with projects going all the time.... a spotless house...  women have done it for all time...

Why do I HATE cooking???  I haven't given up and we are eating out a LOT less... but I HATE it.

Top 10 List of Reasons I hate cooking:
10  You need a list, if you walk into the grocery store with no list, then you have no idea what to buy to create a dinner

9  To have a list, you have to have planned a meal, so stop everything, sit down, and figure out what you are going to make for the next week.  Are you kidding me???

8  Grocery store with kids... if you go to the store with 4 kids 4 and under it's not going to be a pleasant experience.  But, if you wait until Tuesday morning when the kids are in "school" then you killed one of your two mornings w/o kids a week at the grocery store and putting up groceries.  

7  The mystery ingredient.  Ok, I've looked all over the nut section for Pine Nuts... no luck.  I ask, they are hanging between the dairy and produce section... ok, WHY... was the nut section just too hard???  I swear I can't read a recipe without wondering either what is it or where do you find it in the store.  Coconut extract,  unsweetened large coconut flakes, greek yogurt, loosely packed broccoli rabe.. WHAT???  Fresh flat-leaf parsley, is there a non-flat leaf parsley and will it taste bad if my parsley isn't flat???

6  The missing ingredient.  Ok, been to the store... got all the stuff...  let's get the meal going.  WHAT???  How the heck did I not get out of the store with tortillas???  It was right there on the list....  I swear I cannot get out of the grocery store w/o forgetting something.

5  The screw up...  yes, I will fess up that I have in fact screwed up Hamburger Helper not once, but twice. Yes, the easy idiot proof meal....  the 1st time I was making Hamburger Helper and Suddenly Salad.  They both have seasoning packets...  you can probably figure out what went wrong here.  The second time the meal was eaten as a soup due to a measurement mistake on my part.

4  The additional required items to ensure each child eats something.  Remember, Jadon is CRAZY picky and it's an issue in our home.  Therefore, I always include a bread, baby food veggie, and/or a banana/yogurt.

3  The clean-up... wholly cow.  You cook an hour and 1/2, then the clean-up that follows when you are full and tired.  I try to clean as I go... ok, casserole is in the oven it's time to clean up the casserole mess, but still.... UCK!!

2  The prep/clean-up/dining ratio:  Cooking time 1 1/2 hours, clean up time 1/2 hours, eating time 15 minutes.  I want to force everyone to sit an hour and savor each morsel with oooossss and aaawwwss about how good it is given all the time, effort, and emotional sweat I put into it.

1  The whining time....  We may eat for 15 minutes or so, but most of that time is listening to the complaining.  "I don't like this."  "I don't want one bite."  "Can I have dessert"?  "I don't like this kind of bread."  "What is this green thing"??  

Oh, I forgot one... here is one more for the list.  I HATE when I cook and cook and get a bad meal or a mediocre meal.  The meal below, sounded good (Crescent Cheeseburger Pie),  smelled good, looked delicious.... but was ok at best...  did I screw it up??  Who knows, but we will scratch this one off the list....  (Notice, this picture was taken before we ate it... hence I was proud of this meal and had a whole other blog post planned).

Oh, just thought of one more thing.... You are required to know what you are making for dinner when you wake up so you can start thawing out the meat... once again, are you kidding me???  Half the time I'm trying cook frozen hamburger or am running warm water over chicken breast to thaw it out at the last minute.


A Little After Christmas Play

There is just something about this picture below that I love...  I think it's just how unaware of me they are.

the long road

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas is Over.... Ho Ho Ho....

I'll apologize now for any typos and will proof read this later (too tired now)....

While of course I am quite sad that another Christmas has come and gone....  I am also happy to settle back down into "normal."  We can escape our routine for a day or two, but we have been going and going for days now with no naps.

Thursday night, we joined my Aunt & Uncle, their kids and their adorable grandbaby for dinner.  We had a WONDERFUL time and I have to say these types of events are getting easier as the triplets no longer require constant supervision and hand holding.  The food was great and it truly was special.  Of course, the kids didn't get to bed until 10:30.

Friday, we woke and I honestly can't recall what all we did during the morning, but at 1:30 we started getting ready for Church.  We had to be there at 3:15 in order to get a seat for the 4:00 service.  This of course meant no time for naps.  The nursery was closed so we also had to cope with Cody during Mass, but he was pretty good and it was lovely.  This was the children's mass, so during the homily they invited all the kids up to the front.  Jadon was tired and reluctant to go, but he went and halfway through the homily started crying and returned to his seat.  The Church is always so beautiful during the holiday season.  After church we headed over to my parents house for dinner and the annual Christmas ornament opening from GG (Great Grandma).  David, Kerri, and Lane arrived about 7:00 and we sat down to dinner.  When we felt everyone was tired of us (we are a three ring circus), we headed home and put the kids straight to bed.  Of course, after we had them all down we realized we had forgotten to put out milk and cookies for Santa, so we got them all up again, took care of Santa and then put them back to bed again.  Then I began stocking stuffing...

We woke the kids about 7:00 (normal time) and opening stockings and fed them breakfast then loaded the car with gifts and headed over to my parents.  From that point... it's just a blur....  it really was chaotic with soooo many kids and soooo many toys requiring batteries.  Jadon doesn't handle routing changes and chaos well, so he was crying quite a bit.  When all the gifts were opened, we layed the kids down in front of Dora and the adults ate a quiet meal in peace.  BEAUTIFUL... then it was back to kids.  When we got home, I worked to get the house back under control and we WORKED HARD to get the kids down.  OMGosh.... they were very tired and very emotional!!!  It was a rough evening and I was happy to see their little heads hit the pillows.

We woke at 7:00 Sunday and started getting ready for Church.  My Mom was sooo happy to have all of her kids and grandkids with her.  Once again, the nursery was closed so we wrestled Cody, but he was pretty good again.  After Church, we took the kids to lunch and attempted naps (it was too early) to no avail, then headed over to my parents (yes again) for the extended family Christmas party.  My Mom put out a spread you would not believe (She truly is AWESOME)!!!  We exchanged gifts and once again went home with exhausted kids...  and exhausted parents...

While it was busy, crazy, and tiring...  it was also MAGICAL, FUN, HEART WARMING, AND JUST PERFECT and I owe so much of the experience to my Mom who worked very hard to take care of the details and the food.

In the end, Addison got her Jessie with a String, Kaylee got her Unicorn Pillow Pet, and Jadon got his 10 teddybears and Cody, well he just attempted to take their toys away (ha).

Not everyone appreciates me having a camera attached to my face all the time, so I took very few pictures and focused on family rather than shutter speed and aperture, but here are a couple pictures I was able to get.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Terrible Twos... okay maybe?

After the triplets were two years old, I posted Terrible Twos, Not So Terrible cause I really was loving two years old.  I told everybody that the hardest age for us was 18 months to two years and that was true until Cody came along.  I was sooo happy when he hit two because that is when communication opens up and when things got easier with the triplets...  oh my...  this boy is gonna wear me out.  He communicates and totally understands what I'm saying...  he just doesn't like what he is hearing.  Let's just say he doesn't roll with the punches well and doesn't like to take no for an answer.  If things don't go his way,  watch out... meltdown!!!  So several times a day I carry him to time out and he sits there screaming, then he will finally walk out and tell me his is all done and he's ready to be a good boy.  I LOVE him sooo much, but whew... he is what they meant with the phrase "terrible twos."

Cody, I can hear him now, "NO Mommy, No!!"

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Counting Down to Christmas

Another meal is served and bellies are full once again.  Jerry is playing with the kids and I'm taking a moment....

In preparation for Christmas, I still have to get stocking stuffers and wrap a few more gifts, but essentially I am finished and just counting down the days.

Jadon is the one really doing the counting until Christmas because he is absolutely OBSESSED with our Advent calendar.  Each day we open a door on the calendar and find wooden pieces to build a picture of the nativity.  Jadon knows which doors have yet to be opened and he studies the picture and talks about all the pieces.


Kaylee is obsessed with finding Tattle, our elf on the shelf, each morning.  There were a couple nights we forgot to move him and she was soooo bummed he returned to his previous spot after meeting up with Santa.  Since then, we've made sure he visits a new spot every night.  Of course, finding a new spot every night for 24 nights is getting more and more difficult.

Here are a couple shots of the girls.


Friday, December 17, 2010

A Tangled Delight

Last Sunday we decided to take the kids to the movies to see Tangled.  Yes, our 1st feature length movie in a theater.  Crazy idea?  We just didn't know.

The 1st decision, do we take them to the 3D version or the regular...  Hhhhmmmm...  I pictured 4 kids in my head tugging at 3D glasses and whining they can't see.  Ok, No 3D...

2nd decision, do we take them during nap time and hope Cody falls asleep during the movie.  Given he is only 2 he really needs naps and I'm not sure he can sit still for 2 hours.  Let's check show times...  decision made - there isn't a nap time showing.   Ok, we will go to the 5:30 showing.

3rd decision, do we take my parents or boosters???  Will these little bodies sit in the theater chairs?  Will they be able to see? Will we both have 2 kids in our laps?  If they are going to want to sit in laps, do we bring extra laps (My parents)?  4 boosters... too hard.  My parents... they do sooo much and we want to be able to do things solo from time to time.  Ok, no boosters and no parents.

We left the house and got a bite to eat which put us at the theater at 5:00 ish.  Tickets in hand, we found our seats.  1st problem, the kids are too small to hold down the folded theater seats.  They keep going up and folding my children inside.  2nd problem, Cody does not want to sit still.

Then I turned and looked at the little girl in the row behind us....  My eyes lit up like a child's at Christmas.  She is on a booster and I'm pretty sure her Dad sitting next her didn't bring it.  Could it be true???  Theaters have booster????  Please, tell me it's sooooo????  I nudged Jerry and he was off in a flash and came back carrying the most beautiful boosters I've ever seen.  So what that they had a little pop corn butter on them...

From that point on, we sat and enjoyed Tangled without one single issue.  A Christmas miracle perhaps?  Who knows, but it was DELIGHTFUL!!!!

Another miracle...  Addison has allowed me to take a few pictures of her

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I Have What?

Hashimoto Disease?

After each pregnancy I suffered the common postpartum  hair loss that many women suffer and fatigue that new mom's suffer, but it never seemed to get better.  About 9 months after Cody's birth, I had my thyroid checked by my OB/Gyn, but everything seemed to be in the normal range (where in the range, I don't know)....  so life went on.... but things never seemed normal.

A few months ago, during a carotid artery screen, nodules were noticed on my thyroid.  After two ultrasounds, a biopsy was performed.  

Upon returning to the doctor, I was told I had two issues with my thyroid.  1st, I had nodules which were benign and nothing to worry about.  2nd, I have Hashimoto disease.  Essentially, my body is making antibodies which attach my thyroid slowing decreasing it's function until it ultimately fails.  To be honest, this was good news.....  You can live w/o a thyroid with proper medication.  I will have to be screened and watched throughout my life, but my hormone levels were low and I think we've found the cause of my problems....

I've been on meds about a week now, too soon to see changes, but hoping I seen changes in the next few months.....

I Heart Our Pets


Monday, December 13, 2010

A Heart Like Hers

The strength and courage of the human spirit never ceases to amaze me.

I was at Walmart picking up our Christmas cards and got to talking to a lovely lady about my photography HOBBY when the cashier asked for a photographers release for the picture I had taken.  She told me she was in fact in need of a photographer for a charitable event.  I told her, "No way... it's just a hobby." But she was sooo nice and funny and said there were no expectations, they just needed the event documented for the charitable status.  When she explained it was for pediatric cancer patients I relented and we exchanged numbers.

I showed up Saturday night a nervous wreck and began taking pictures.  They began showing a slide show of a little girl Morgan and as I watched I soon realized that this precious girl was the daughter of that lovely woman (Dineta) who I had met at Walmart.  This joyous smiling woman and her husband had lost their daughter to cancer.  This charity was founded by them in memory of Morgan.  I was overwhelmed and felt quite blessed to be there.

As the night progressed I heard from doctors, nurses and other parents with cancer stricken children.  By the end of the evening I was fighting back tears not only from the stories but from the love, faith, and strength of little Morgan's parents.  They are truly extraordinary.

A Heart Like Hers is the foundation started in memory of Morgan.  If you have a moment, visit their site, read Morgan's Story and if so moved considered making a donation.

Our Mission is to act as a life-line for resources and a reservior for "Faith" filled encouragement for families living with a pediatric cancer diagnosis, by providing direct finanical assistance for the non-medical aspects of treatment and lending emotional support that encourages and empowers families for the journey.




Now, with regard to my 1st "job"....  I am even more certain that I never want to be a wedding photographer....  4 hours on your feet trying to capture everything and not screw it up....  Think I'll stick with taking pictures of my kids for now, but I give thanks that I met Dineta and came to assist this fabulous organization and group of people.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

You want to interview ME??? WOW!!!!

A few weeks ago, Nicolasa from My Perspective, contacted me and asked if I'd like to be featured on her "Meet n' Greet Monday" for fellow bloggers who share their lives through photography.  Of course I jumped at the chance to be involved in anything photography related and felt quite honored.  Her blog is amazing and her photos delicious, so check her out and visit her site tomorrow the 13th for my interview.  THANKS Nicolasa!!!

My Perspective

Oh, I had an interesting weekend with regard to photography which I'll be posting soon...  a crazy learning experience!!  Stay tuned.....


Welcome back for another Meet n' Greet Monday! If you haven't been here for this before, I welcome you to sit back and relax as you read about an inspirational blogger who shares their life with us through photographs.

This week's featured blogger is Tracy from Three Peas and a Bean. Her blog is full of amazing photos that you'll want to look at for longer than a few seconds. I just love looking at her stunning photos. Tracy has a natural talent to capture the real moments in her life. She also has some pretty adorable children! :-)

Take a moment to learn about Tracy and stop by her blog to say "Hi!" and follow her blog! You won't regret it!

The Necessary Questions

Where you can find her:

Three Peas and A Bean
How long have you been blogging? What made you start up a blog?

I started blogging August 15th 2008, just a month after the birth of our 4th child. I didn’t know what a blog was, never heard of a blog, but was introduced to a blog through another mother at our church with 6 kids, number 7 on the way. I loved logging on every day and reading about the craziness of her life with 6 kids. I soon realized blogging is a great way to document life and with 4 kids under 2 (at the time), I had a lot to document. At the close of each year, I turn our blog into a book so in January I’ll create volume III, 2010. What I didn’t expect was to find blogging so therapeutic. When the babies go down for naps, I try to escape into blogging whether it’s creating my own posts or diving into the other wonderful blogs out there.

How long have you been interested in photography? Are you a hobbyist, amateur, or professional photographer?
After the birth of the triplets, we had a photographer come to our house to take pictures. The pictures were amazing!!! We had her out again after the birth of Cody and all I could think was I want to capture beautiful pictures of my kids every day, not once a year, so I asked my husband for a camera for Christmas 2008. I spent the 1st year plus with the camera on auto, so I didn’t learn a lot about my camera, but I did learn a TON about Photoshop and now I do photo editing freelance and for the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep organization (http://www.nowilaymedowntosleep.org/). Given I’ve only had my camera off Auto for no more than a year now, I would totally call myself a hobbyist, but I LOVE it!! Prior to all the babies, I lived life in the corporate world working ridiculous crazy hours (although my hours are even crazier as a full time mom) as an Accounting Director. While I love life at home, I missed some of the corporate challenges. Photography and photo editing challenges me beyond my motherhood role and fits nicely into my world.
Team Canon or Nikon?

I’m a Nikon girl
What is your favorite lens to use?
I have three lenses now and most often I shoot with my 50mm 1.4. It allows me to shoot in low light and higher shutter speeds which is important given my subjects are usually not standing still for me in the perfect glow of morning and evening light.

The Photography Details
What is your favorite thing to photograph? Why?
By far, my favorite thing to photograph is my kids. They will never be this little again and I don’t think there is anything in the world more beautiful. They inspire me in every way and push me to continually strive for that perfect portrait. I do wish they would be more cooperative when I pull out the camera. As soon as the camera comes out they run and hide, but I've found M&Ms to be a good bribe.
Do you host a photo challenge? If so, tell us about it. If not, what is the number one photo challenge that you enter weekly?
I do not host a photo challenge, but am a photo challenge junkie. I only wish I had more time so could enter them all every week. It frustrates me beyond words that I have to miss so many challenges. I also strive to comment and return comments as much as possible, but once again time is not my friend.

Ashley Sisk who was featured here recently is my idol. She enters all the challenges, hosts a challenge, and comments like no one I've ever seen.

My favorite photo challenge is I Heart Faces due to the sheer magnitude and pool of talent from newest newbie to seasoned professional. With hundreds of entries each week I love clicking through and seeing amazing shots and creative interpretations of a single theme.

The Fun Stuff

What is your favorite food?
Anything fried... fries, cheese, jalapenos... you name it. Fry it and I’ll probably love it.

What is your favorite season?
Spring!! Everything is beginning to green up again. The leaves are that bright new baby leaf green. It’s getting warm enough to let the kids play outside again... I love it.

What is your current favorite song?
I haven’t really watched TV or listened to music since the babies were born. I watch Dora the Explorer from time to time and in the car listen to the kids cartoons playing on the DVD player, so this is a tough one. When I’m not listening to talk radio, I listen to christian and my favorite song for as long as I can remember is I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me.

Thank you so much Tracy for taking time out to answers these questions and share with us! Don't forget to swing by her blog!

As always if you or someone you know should be featured here on Mondays send me an e-mail!
keepinitinperspective at gmail dot com

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Xmas Card Photo... UGH!!

I knew this wasn't going to be fun and I was sooooo right....

Step One:  Getting dear husband on board to cooperate and help in getting the kids dressed and polished.
Step Two:  Getting dear husband to allow me to try and turn our bedroom into a "studio" and I use that term VERY lightly given I just brought down every lamp in the house to get the room bright enough to allow a picture to be taken.  NOT THE IDEAL and didn't make dear husband excited.
Step Three:  Practice before calling in the subject matter....  Take a picture and go grab more lamps.
Step Four:  Bring in the kids...  here is where the nightmare began.  I had a cute pose already picked out in my head, but no one wanted to stay in their designated spot... everybody wanted to sit on the box and no one wanted to stand close together.  Whatever!!!!  snap, snap, snap...
Step Five:  Run to the computer... anything worth trying to save.... OH NO!!! TERRIBLE... get more lamps.
Step Six:  Walk lightly, dear husbands patience is running thin....
Step Seven:  "OK, Everyone back on your mark.  Kaylee, get your finger out of your nose.  Addison, stand up straight and move back over.  Cody, quit sucking on your tongue.  Jerry, PLEASE don't fuss at them too bad or you'll get someone crying.  UHG,,,, Jadon.... don't cry...."
Step Eight:  Back to the computer....  CRAP!!!!!!
Step Nine:  Line them up again....  (I was ready to give up at this point, but dear husband rallied and pulled it all together....  did I mention I LOVE HIM????)
Step Ten:  Back to the computer....  If I swap Cody's head from another shot...  I can salvage this one photo.....  GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME!!!!

This photo session is a wrap!!!!

Oh, by the way... the boy in the middle is Cody (the baby)... believe it or not..

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Make Room on Santa's Lap... Here We Come....

Friday morning, in an attempt to beat the long lines, we showed up with kids dressed and ready to meet Santa upon opening.  We were about 3rd in line and did in fact beat the crowd which will only get worse as we get closer to Christmas.  The short wait was torture given I had 4 VERY EXCITED and wound up kiddos,  but with the help of my parents we kept them in check.  I wasn't really sure how they would all react this year... would we have tears???  The triplets were ready to tell Santa exactly what they wanted for Christmas and fortunately this years Santa was much nicer than prior years, so he actually listened.

Addison was VERY timid and in a quiet voice told him she wants a Toy Story Jessie doll with the string that makes her talk.

Kaylee was next and whispered to him that she would like a unicorn pillow pet.

Jadon stepped up and in a loud confident voice asked for 10 teddy bears.  Don't ask where 10 teddy bears came from????  The girls have wanted their above items for quiet some time and if you ever ask them what they want for Xmas you will get this same answer.  Jadon... hhhmmm  his items range from Angels to  pixie dust to 10 teddy bears.  He woke up Friday morning and stated he wanted 10 teddy bears!!!

In my closet tucked away is a Jessie doll with the string and a unicorn pillow pet...  I now really would like to find 10 tiny little teddy bears and put them in a bag in Jadon's stocking.  Ahhh, a new quest and challenge!!!  Of course, I'm sure he will want something else by Christmas morning, but he asked Santa for 10 teddy bears and I want Santa to deliver!!!

I was shocked that when asked to smile at the camera Jadon, who normally RUNS from my camera,  looked straight into that camera and flashed smiles until all the pictures were taken.  Cody on the other hand fell back into his comfort habit of sucking on his tongue and jutting out his lower jaw... oh well he still looks cute.  You have to keep expectations low when trying to photograph four munchkins.  I started doing a little digital scrapbooking and added all the "stuff" (frame, words, ribbon, etc.) around the photo.  Kinda fun.

PS.  I am still without camera.  Nikon's estimate for the repair was full of errors (UGH) and I am still waiting for a correct service order.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thank You God... for Stickers???

I was driving the kids home from "school" this afternoon and the conversation went something like this...

Jadon:  I'm going to ask God to make it froggy
Me:  Foggy?  You want it to be foggy?
Jadon:  Yes, that's why God makes it froggy.
Me:  ?  What do you mean?  Foggy?  What does foggy mean?
Jadon:  It means cloudy
(ok, he is in fact saying foggy)
Me:  Yep, you are right God can make it foggy.
Jadon:  God makes flowers grow, and grass grow, and trees beautiful with apples.  God makes everything.
Kaylee:  and beautiful flags (we had just driven past an American flag)
Addison:  and beautiful stickers....

I don't know what it is about kids and stickers, but they are a favorite in our house.

On a side note, I am without camera....  My camera is no longer tripping my external flash remotely (which it used to) and after working with the manager at Ritz camera for about 20 minutes we determined it's the camera, so I've mailed it off for repairs....  I'll go through and find some recent photos to post to keep things interesting.  My favorite part of blogs are the pictures, so I want to keep up our photos until the return of my camera.

On another note...  I picked up our Christmas cards today and was asked to provide the copyright release form.  I told her I took the photo myself and she then had me fill out a copyright release as the photographer.  I told her she made my day!!!!  While I LOVE taking pictures and am always trying to get better, I'd NEVER promote myself as a professional.