Wednesday, December 9, 2009
As the kids and I were watching this Heroes of the Bible story about Jesus's birth, I realized that I wasn't doing my job in raising them in a Christ-centered environment.
I think I'm still in survival mode. They get fed, they have clean clothing, I read to them, sometimes I play with them, I take them to swimming lessons and other activities. But at a cost to my own being. Its not always fun, its usually stressful, but its necessary.
I realized the triplets had not been to church since the middle of October. Or at least thats what I last remember. I have been to church several times with Jacob, but I don't take them. Its too much work, I don't have enough hands, and I don't hear the sermon at all.
Things need to change. Christ is the center of my life (or should be) and it should be theirs also. I need to take the time to take them to church, sing songs with them, go to sunday school. Now that they are mostly potty-trained I can sign them up for Sunday school. They'll get the interaction they need with other kids and learn about Christ.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Michelle and her husband Brian have three children. Karly is 14 and two years ago was diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer and is now cancer free. Braden is in Kindergarten this year and their youngest is Ruby who is 2 1/2. Ruby is a twin. With no words to describe the situation, Lydia was stillborn at 38 weeks. Ruby and Lydia are identical twins and have down syndrome.
Michelle and Brian have opened their hearts and home to another child and I hope that you can support them emotionally and maybe even donate to their cause. Keep Lily and her new family in your prayers.
Monday, December 7, 2009
I think of things, but don't take the time.
For instance, I'm not sure anyone really wants to hear the ins and outs of potty-training. Its not fun, its TMI and really that's what consumes my time. I spend hours with Matthew on the toilet coaxing him to poop. I feel like a labor coach. I actually think I could deliver a baby now with my experience and advice on getting the kids to poop. Poop. Whoever thought I'd be actually blogging about it. But I think that the kids are doing really well and are probably 80-90% potty-trained. Hopefully by Christmas there will be no more accidents.
Secondly, the boys needed something else to sleep on besides their crib mattresses. We got them low rise loft bunk beds. The beds are perpendicular and John sleeps on top and Matthew actually sleeps at the foot of his own bed on the bottom. Why John on top? He doesn't move at all when he sleeps and has a really good compass when it comes to where he is and how to get around at night. On the other hand, Matthew falls off his crib mattress several times a night. I don't think he's fallen out of his bed though. But he still does cry out a lot. Not sure why.
So tonight at the football game is on, I heard whining/crying. I went up to find John laying on top of Matthew, half asleep, crying. I don't know if he tried getting off the side of the bed and fell on Matthew. But Matthew didn't notice a thing and John was crying. It was really funny and disturbing at the same time.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Since September 3rd I have been sick. It started out with a migraine, then pneumonia for three weeks which immediately followed by a sinus infection. Can I catch a break? I'm just hoping I'll get all this over and have a happy and healthy winter. One can only hope.
The kids got a cough in mid september and Brooke has not shaken it yet. Jacob had it too and on Sunday he came down with a fever. Due to the heightened awareness of the flu virus and H1N1, many schools are taking a lot of precautions. Like sending out notices about having kids in with fevers. A big no-no.
So I kept him home monday and he was acting like normal, except for a little bit on the quiet side. Last night he climbed into bed with me and he had a fever. I gave him medicine and he was fine and spunky. So I sent him to school. He fell asleep when he got home for about two hours. Then he threw up the yogurt I gave him. I think it was due to him not wanting to eat it and my policy of "you'll eat if and I don't care if you vomit it up." But with him falling asleep and having a slight fever tonight, I'll keep him home tomorrow.
And speaking of being sick of things, I need a good night's sleep without kids coming in and out of the bed all night. Mostly I've put up with it because they don't feel well and I think its just my maternal duty to cuddle with them a bit more. Sometimes I take them back to their beds and just lay with them. But their beds are very small so its not very comfortable.
I have seriously considered drugging them so that they sleep 8-10 hours or more and not get me up at 2 and 3 in the morning. I'm hoping for a peaceful sleep without children tonight.
Jacob seems to be liking school. He really has taken off with reading and I'll read books to him too. He can memorize really easily. Makes my job easier. But we have at least 1/2 hour of home work each night plus any additional reading.
I dread when the triplets get to school and trying to manage all of this. I know by then I'll have come up with a system, but its just overwhelming. I guess that should be a little lesson reminder to me to just take one day at a time. Maybe it will be easier teaching three kids at once. I'm glad that they will be in the same classroom. Makes it easier on me and less confusing.
Potty training is going really really well. Its just getting them to poop in the toilet. They still hide on me and its doesn't seem like incentives are working for this one. Maybe they are afraid, maybe they don't want to give up control, maybe they realize its one step towards independence.
I'm not putting them in underwear because we just got a new couch and I really don't want to be cleaning that over and over again.
What is really nice is that I bought diapers in the beginning of September (176 of them) and we still have over 1/2 left. I bought a small pack of girl pullups and a big pack of boy pull ups in 6 weeks. I need more pullups now, but the nice things is that I've probably spent $80 in the last 6 weeks versus spending $200 in that amount of time.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
New stuff in the Callaway household... POTTYTRAINING
I started about two weeks ago with all three children. I didn't want to do all three at once, but I wasn't having much luck with Brooke on her own.
So I got about $50 worth of little toys, stickers and a reward chart and gave them stickers every time they tried to go potty. It only took a few days for the boys to catch on. Matthew is even dry at night about 1/2 the time. John is probably the most ready for underwear now, but can be just stubborn.
Brooke is another story. It took her a very long time to figure out how to use her muscles to go potty. She does have a few accidents during the day, but has done really well with improving how many times she goes potty. I don't think she's ready for underwear just yet.
The only problem is that the kids are potty-trained, not poop-trained. I think if I can catch them a couple of times trying to hide to go in their pull-ups, I can get them to go on the toilet.
Jacob started school two weeks ago. He doesn't really want to go to school. He's still got his shy problems from last year. He doesn't want to make a mistake. And then there is the whole, "they already have friends and I don't want to ask them to play with me" thing. I just wish he could make one or two friends instead of wandering around at recess by himself. It breaks my heart.
He's doing very well academically though. I was surprised to find him reading a level 1 book all by himself.
Matthew started Early Childhood two weeks ago. He's a good role model in the class as there are new boys in his 3 year old class. He even asks to go potty at school.
John started his speech class today. His teacher said he is doing so wonderfully and must have had a growth spurt in his speech over the summer.
The other thing we are doing is going to "school" otherwise known as library time at the Neenah Public Library on tuesdays when Matthew is in school. Its for 3,4, and 5 year olds without a caregiver. The key word is "without". John wouldn't let me leave him so I sat through story time, dance time and puppet time.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
I had suppressed my known fear of flying until I got on the airplane. Not sure why I don't like flying. Lack of control, fear of heights, smell of stale urine, who knows.
But the fun started when we got to our rental car and tried to leave the security area and they gave us the wrong car, so in the 100 degree heat at midnight we figured it out with the nice but clueless Budget people.
We stayed at Circus Circus and it hadn't changed in the five years that we had been there last. Same gaudy decorations, but the rooms are nice and comfortable. Basically we gambled a lot, did a little bit of sightseeing and not much sleep. I think our highlight was seeing Red Rock Canyon. Very pretty area. Very different from the green vegetation around here. I love the Red Rock Canyon Casino too. Very nice place.
The last night we went downtown and boy has it gotten seedy. I cannot believe how many children are out at all times of the night for one thing. Las Vegas is not a place for children. Or at least children you want to keep from seeing the darker side of life. Anyway, as we walk down Fremont street I look into a casino and see a girl pole dancing around blackjack tables. We go into Binions to play poker and when we come out the same thing is happening there too. Come on.
This whole thing got brought up at the Poker table. I was sitting next to the dealer and he leaned to me and said, "They have places around here that men dance too." I wrinkled my nose up and said, "that's not for me" or something to that effect. It was like the dealer was talking about a favorite blanket or teddy bear. He whispered to me, "oh, I just love watching men dance." And I got the hebbiegebbies. And then I realized I wasn't in Kansas anymore. It wasn't so much that he was gay, it was more about the tone of voice and how he described it. I didn't have to guess where my tips were going...
And that basically sums up my trip. I like living in an area where there isn't advertisements for sex being blown around, parents respect children's nap times and bedtimes, respect for ourselves and others is predominant. All those good things that make Appleton a great place to raise a family.
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
So if something would happen to me, a freak accident, I die peacefully in my sleep or the Boogeyman gets me - this is my last and only Will and Testament.
I, Jean Marie Plamann Callaway, being of somewhat sound mind and body, would like my family and loved ones know that I'm in a better place, don't mourn for me, celebrate my life.
My life has been consumed by my children, which are most precious. God has been gracious by giving me four children and I or my husband are no longer able to take care of them, I would like them to grow up knowing God and be living examples. (So that narrows down a bunch of people ;). Just kidding.)
I would like my children to be raised by my sister-in-law Amy Elizabeth Wichman Plamann and my brother James Walter Plamann. They will take care of my children and Jim can be executors of our estate (or whatever is not in debt). I would like my children to get a christian education and be good citizens of this earth.
Secondarily, my cat Cosmo is very dear to me. I don't want her put in a shelter or given away to strangers. There are a short list of people I think would take her in, Amy & Jim Plamann, Mike & Kathy Callaway or Fred & Arlyne Plamann. Please take care of my kitty.
My living will has been established and is with my doctor and a copy is at Theda Clark in Neenah.
Now, I haven't written a will before, but it would look like this. I was afraid to do it because I wasn't so sure that Amy and Jim would want to take my kids in if I asked them, but if I'm dead I figure they'd follow my wishes.
I'll really miss my kids, but I know I'll come back a refreshed better mother. And hopefully with more money in my pocket than I went with.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Aunt Julie and Uncle Kelly at their camp site. The kids kept wanting to go inside the camper and play.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
We get to Michaels and we get out of the van. Brooke is the first to hold my hand, then as I yell for John he comes over and gets my other hand. Jacob is chasing Matthew around the parking lot trying to get his hand.
Luckily the parking lot is pretty empty and no one is trying to back over my children. So I start yelling at Matthew to hold Jacob's hand or my hand. We get into the store without Matthew holding anyone's hand.
Then the two little boys wanted to stand and started fighting over space in the cart. We were the highlight of other's shopping trip. A lot of whispering and stares.
I still take them to the mall. This time I put the steel grip on his hand and Jacob holds Brooke's hand. (It was really cute)
We play in the play area and then we're off to Stride Rite to get the kid's shoe sizes. Matthew refuses to hold hands and actually lays down in the middle of the mall. The other two little ones are running around us. Oh, I'd love to get my hands on that video surveillance. I start to get a little impatient and raise my voice.
The good news is that we made it to the store and back through the mall to our van without: losing a child, getting hit by a car, or social services being called for mommy dragging unwilling toddlers.
Brooke has a size 10 foot. She's 3. When is this going to end. She's going to be 6 feet tall with size women's 10 shoes. Definitely does not take after me. So now we need to buy her some new tennis shoes.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
PRAYER: This can be so hard, Jesus. Not as much with the ones I love or even with strangers, but it's extremely difficult to do for that person who hurts me, who rubs me the wrong way, or who has lost my respect. It's so tempting to turn around and be uncharitable, insulting, and vindictive - treating that person in a way I think he deserves. Forgive me for when I do that. How quickly I forget that I deserved to be treated this way by you. As much as others offend me, what my sins do to you is infinitely worse. Yet you love me! You died for me! No matter what others do to me, help me always to love them doing to them as I would have them do to me. Amen.
I've been dealing with someone who isn't my biggest fan. Rumors are spread, false truths, made-up stories, etc... and its so hard not to fight back and defend myself. Instead I've just been ignoring it hoping it will go away. I'm hoping that my actions of silence speak louder than anothers words.
I've tried to figure out why there is an "I Hate Jean club" and here's what I've come up with.
1) I say whats on my mind and that is unsettling to people
2) I am a pretty organized, driven individual and I think it intimidates people
3) Some people need to raise themselves up by putting others down
4) Some people are so miserable that they want to make others miserable
5) Absence of God in their life...
I can laugh about it now because I know its not true and God knows its not true and I'm trying to be sincere. But its hard. Because its fun to be catty, but its a bad example for my children. Sigh.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
John has worn me down. I'm reading James Dobson's The New Strong Willed Child. Its really good. A couple of things that I've gotten out of the book are that if a child has a strong will, just imagine what a strong will he will have for God. A child that has this drive and determination, the possibilities are endless. FDR was considered a strong willed child. Ted Bundy probably was too though. I'll settle for somewhere in the middle though.
The other thing is that I as a parent am not a failure just because I have a strong-willed child. I have a couple of other cookie cutter children that are low maintenance. And God does give me what I can handle.
The other issue with John is that not only is he a strong-willed child, he has sensory issues. He seeks sensory input. He craves bumping, jumping and motions. He runs full force into things and people. He smashes food, he does inappropriate things. But its all based on his neurological needs.
Its a fine balancing act.
If John doesn't want to do something, its stupid, stupid kid, stupid man, dumb and I hate you. He's three. Can you imagine the strings of curse words that he's going to throw down when he's ten? If I ignore him then he has won. If I confront him and have him sit on the stairs, his high chair,his room, he goes ballistic. If I put soap in his mouth or something else less tasty, he spits and spews and I do not even recognize him. These fits can last for long periods of time. How do I take care of the other kids when this is going on. Its not fair to them. But it would be a bigger injustice if I did not address it and nip this problem in the bud. Which according to Dr. Dobson could take years.
I don't have years left. I'd like to settle down, read a little more, relax, maybe make a few meals from scratch, take a shower everyday, sew, do a little surfing on the web...
Wow, this parenting stuff is really hard. I think good birth control would be to show teenagers and young adults videos of three year olds. Or just have them watch them for a day. It makes me think twice about bringing more children into the world.
And then there's me. I've been to the doctor twice this week. Two days in a row. I went to be Tuesday evening with a really sore toe. It was throbbing. Turns out I have a ganglion cyst or something to that effect. Basically, one of the kids stepped on my toe that night and probably ruptured it. I'm supposed to elevate, ice and where sandals (stiff ones). I'm not supposed to bend my toe so the joints don't get more aggravated or something like that. I don't know, I'm not a doctor, I've just spent a ton of time in their offices. As I was there I had the doctor look at the dimple at the bottom of my foot. It turned out to be a corn and he cut it out. And now it feels great. Then he looked at my elbow and I have tennis elbow and its been pretty painful. I think the kids caused this one due to me having to push, pull, carry, drag, resist, or put stress on my type of body.
So I had ice on three different areas of my body, have strengthening exercises for a couple of different areas.
Then today I went in for my knee. The inner part of my knee is very tender and every time I bend it, I have a lot of pain. Bending, sitting, going up stairs, etc... is really stressing it out. The doctor says I have Plica Syndrome which has to do when I was formed in my mothers womb and when the knee formed. I have a ridge in a tendon or disc or something that when it rubs on my kneecap becomes irritated and inflamed. So I got some prescription drugs and more exercises.
Better than going to therapy. The only kind I want right now is mental. I'd like a shot of sanity along with patience.
Friday, July 3, 2009
How can I get it through a certain 3 year olds head that stupid and poopy are not appropriate words. If I don't say anything, then the others think its o.k. If I correct him and tell him those are bad words, he purposely says them. Like, 30 X's a day. If I send him to his room, he just sits by the door and repeats those words over and over. If I put him in his high chair he just rants and raves and screams and says every bad word that he can think of. So I wash out his mouth with soap. Liquid soap. This has mixed results as he spits it out and usually still says them. So now I threaten him with Red pepper. I put a tiny bit on the tip of his tongue and that usually works. And I give him a drink after a minute or so.
But the kid just does not give in. Matthew, Brooke and Jacob spend half their day telling me what John said.
I don't know if I should try taking something away from him, physically beating the words out of him, trying a nastier tasting soap, getting a muzzle, electric shock therapy, its these things I fantasize about but never really push the line. Because I do really love him and just want to contain his spirit, but not break it.
Actually, I think the shock therapy thing would work.... hmm.... if we put them on dogs, why can't we put them on our children?
Monday, June 22, 2009
The weather was very good. Warm, 70s, and only rained twice. The day we arrived and the day we left. The kids enjoyed playing on the playsets and running around. I put life jackets on them most of the time and they loved playing on the beach in the sand and in the water. It was just easier to watch them that way with their life jackets on. It gave me piece of mind.
Jacob was obsessed with finding out-of-state license plates. I got him a board that had a picture of the U.S. and then listed all the states on the back. You're supposed to check the state when you see it. He found 23 different states when we were in Minocqua. Thats amazing. But its a pretty popular vacation area.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Jacob asked me the other day how old he has to be to drive the boat. I told him 16. I think he's now required to take a boaters safety class anyway before he actually gets to drive on his own. Then I ran across these pictures of him driving. So I guess dad or grandpa let him drive. I'm sure its thrilling for him to steer the boat, but at least I know where the line of questioning came from.
I'm trying to pack for our vacation to Minoqua Wisconsin next week. Its hard to pack around kids because they take stuff out of the bins you just put in. Or they don't want you to pack the toys or throw a fit about something. So I have to be sneaky. Still challenging though. I have a ton to do, but decided to blog about it first.
Jacob cannot wait to go fishing at the cottage. I think Scott is not far behind him in excitement. I have a feeling that John will want to go with them this year too. We'll try fishing off the dock with the triplets and see how much they like it and how long their attention span is.
Either way, I'm still stuck with two kids and its really not a vacation for me since the kids now no longer nap and they are getting up earlier than I'd like. I have my fingers crossed that the weather is good and we can be outside.
I admit that facebook has been quite addicting. I love to play scrabble with friends (and strangers) on it. They also have great games and time fillers. Its also nice to chat with friends and people I haven't run across for awhile.
Well, I'm off to get the kids dressed and get something done.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Lets see, Jacob finished school last Friday. It was bittersweet as I was happy to not have to get up to bring him to school. His report card came today and he did pass Kindergarten and will be in 1st grade next year. Its shocking to me that I have a 1st grader. Where did all this time go?
A lot of weird things have been happening lately. The kind of weird that you think there are hidden cameras around and Ashton Kutcher will be popping out from behind a tree weird.
A couple of weeks ago I went out for a walk at 10 p.m. A neighbor a couple of houses down was out cutting her lawn. In the dark. At night. When people are sleeping. In the pitch dark. So I shook my head as I was out for my walk thinking how I'd be ticked if I was the next-door neighbor trying to sleep. Last week as I was out with my daycare passel she screeches to a halt in front of my house and she tells me shes beeing stalked. She goes on about how her 25 year marriage went to hell when her husband met someone else out-of-town and then she finally got back in the dating game on Craigslist. This nice fellow she met on Craigslist was abusive and she said she got a restraining order on the guy, but then she said something about him getting a restraining order against her. Babble, babble, babble, head nod, head nod...
And when I could get a word or two in I told her to call the police and have extra patrol in the area. Apparently since she knew Scott was a copper she must have wanted him to sleep on her couch. She should have looked for someone on Craigslist to help her with her stalker.
Speaking of cops. On Scott's birthday we (my dad, Scott's mom, Scott and I) head up to the casino and we're on HWY 29 cruising along in the good ol' mini van. When suddenly lights appear behind us and Scott is being pulled over. Now, he was talking with my father, but he had set the cruise around 72ish and the speed limit was 65. The state trooper came up to the window and yadda, yadda, yadda, said he was giving him a warning. Now, he didn't know Scott was a cop because it wouldn't have come back if he checked the license plate and Scott didn't tell him. The only thing that saved him from a court date in Shawno County was the "Got Triplets" sticker on the back of the van. I could tell he was peering in the back just dying for a look at the freak show. But it was just me and my MIL.
And FYI, this is the second time Scott has been pulled over on his birthday and I've been with him in the car. I have not been pulled over in about 8-9 years (knock on wood). But I did have a pretty good streak going there for a bit.
Lately my kids have been obsessed with Spongebob. I had TIVO'd the SpongeBob movie and actually never really watched the whole thing because I do other things while their eyes are glued to the TV. Why is a TV called a BoobTube? I don't get it? Why do people have bumper stickers that say WALL DRUG? Another mystery. I digress...
So John has been saying, "Stupid Kid!" Its very clear and I'm impressed with his enunciation, but I have been upset at him saying "Stupid" because we don't say stupid in this house. Its not nice and its not kind. So I'll tell him what I just told you and he still says it. Go figure. So as I'm watching the end of SpongeBob, Plankton calls SpongeBob - yep, you guessed it! "Stupid Kid!" A couple of different times. Great.
Then Jacob also says or yells, "I'm SO the boss of you!" To the triplets a lot. Then I saw the episode when SpongeBob wants to bathe Gary, his pet Snail, and I heard that line several times too.
This is why people don't let their kids watch SpongeBob. These same people don't even buy the SpongeBob fruit snacks when they shop.
And maybe tomorrow or the next day I'll tell you about Johns antics and how he's going to get himself put in toddler jail.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Our excursion to the New Zoo in Suamico last sunday. One of the rare times that all the animals are facing the same way and looking at the camera.
What a whopper! I'm not sure when this was taken. Jacob has been fishing a few times with daddy. Hopefully they will get to go this weekend too.
Friday, May 15, 2009
I cannot believe that its been six years since he was last in my stomach. We were looking at a United States map tonight and Jacob was asking me what states he's been to. Unfortunately he's not well traveled, but its just two. Wisconsin and Minnesota. He pointed to several states that he wanted to go to. Florida because that's where two of his classmates went this spring break. He also chose Washington State (Anne, I'm sending him your way this summer), Maine and Nevada.
He was disappointed that he had only been to two states. Unfortunately on a state employees salary, we get great benefits, but the pay isn't so great. I did explain to him that when he was in my stomach, he traveled to Nevada, Michigan, and New York. He thought that it counted then and now its five states he's been to.
Funny how a young man thinks.
Happy Birthday baby. And many many more!
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Don't kick a person when they are down. If I'm telling you I'm having a bad day or I'm frustrated, I told you so is not the correct response from any friend, relative or acquaintance. Or better yet, they have no children or one child and tell me how much harder it is when they get older "you just wait!".
Being a mother of four children is one thing, being a mother of 3 year old triplets is a whole different ballgame.
If you can't say anything nice (or positive) don't say anything at all.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Some of my more memorable moments.
- When I walked into a pole at work after just coming back from Cancun in 1995. Two of my co-workers witnessed it. I was hungover and wasn't watching where I was walking.
- When I showed up for a job interview for the above job late because I had come to work that morning with one black shoe and one navy shoe.
- When I walked out of the bathroom at the old Shakey's with toilet paper coming out of my pants. Scott and our friend Aaron were there to witness that incident.
- Last Sunday when I went to Jacob's t-ball practice with my shirt inside out and didn't notice it until I got into the car AFTER practice.
Yeah, Scott, I know you're saying I told you so. We have this argument that has been going on for oh, 10 or so years. He thinks I should turn my shirts outside in (the right way to wear them) vs inside out. After years of analysis and agreeing to disagree, I've found that I take off my shirts from the bottom and they end up inside out in the wash. And they stay that way when they are in my closet. I usually don't look too much in depth when I pick out a shirt, just one that is complimentary to my pants. So, this is why I wore an inside out shirt and why everyone who was sitting behind me probably wondered what the heck is with THAT woman.
The triplets are driving me NUTS. O.K. truthfully its just Brooke and John, but I think in general its three things. They are 3, they are out of their cribs and they have stopped taking naps.
I am about to tie them down at bedtime. I'm so sick of Brooke getting out of bed and turning the light on or shutting and opening and shutting the door over and over. No amount of angry glares, shushing, yelling or swats stops her. Same thing with John. He bounces on his mattress, is running around the room, wrecks the blinds while looking out the window and makes it really hard for Matthew to fall asleep. And then on occasion, Matthew will join in on the foray and then everyone gets yelled at. Tonight it took 90 minutes for everyone to get settled.
By the time they go to bed, I am ready for peace and quiet. Three has been very challenging so far. Its not like I can put a shock collar on them and hit a button when they don't listen or run out of the yard. Its really wishful thinking and I would probably get social services at my door.
Then tonight as Brooke came out of her bedroom because she was wet, I changed her diaper and went into the bathroom to wash my hands and use the facilities. I look to my left, the wall, and right next to the toilet paper, is this (cringing) big gigantic thing. Its not moving. Its got about 50 legs and this really long body. It was so freaking scary I almost peed in my pants. Good thing I was already in the right area. I squashed it and flushed it down the toilet. And when I squashed it, I could feel the meaty part of the body breaking. Ewww. It was so big that I think it would supplied enough protein for a small child.
Kids are sick. Matthew got sick last monday night with a fever and cold, then Brooke with a cold, and then John with a fever and cold who still has one and then Jacob with a cold. Scott is also got some type of bug. I'm the last one standing.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
If not, I've got some Tamiflu left over from last years Influenza A epidemic that occurred in the Callaway household. I am willing to sell it on the black market at very high prices to pay for my children's schooling. I'm not above that. But I do have limits.
Like, for instance, a couple of my pet peeves. People that lie. You know you lied, people around you can verify what really happened, just tell the truth or God will strike you dead in your tracks. O.K. probably not that dramatic, but God knows what you did or didn't do.
Another pet peeve of mine, or would be if I were a boy, is getting kicked in the privates. Last night while working, a girl, all the age of 11, kicked a boy, age 10 in his tenders. For nothing. No reason.
Speaking of lying. Jacob just lied to me. He took some Lego figures away from Matthew and he said he didn't. It was still in his hand. Hello? Get rid of the evidence if you don't want to get caught in a lie.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Of course mom and dad have been a little lax in playing catch with him since we have three other little ones around and don't want them to get hit by the ball. They seem to gravitate towards anything that we're doing. But he's had plenty of practice hitting off the tee.
The best news is that three other high school friends have kids on the same team. How awesome is that?
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
The positives of 3 year olds. Really fun to take them to the store. They hold my hands really good now and actually sit pretty well for 20 minutes or so. They can express themselves better than they could last year. They can get themselves dressed - to a point. Oh, and they are healthy.
Negatives. Today was one of those days where I could come up with a very long list of negatives. Sometimes I just need to sip some wine and take a step back. Who wouldn't love to be a parent to four children. There are people in the world that yearn to have children and would do anything just to have one. With that said....
John. (I just took a big relaxing breath) He's pushing my buttons. A lot. This no nap thing for all three of them is killing me. The minute I turn to do something, John is at the cat or at the counter or at the refrigerator or at the TV. He's defiant, strong willed, stubborn, defiant, and defiant. Its really hard parenting a defiant child. Because the more you "butt" heads, the worse it gets.
I took a shower today at 4 p.m. and had a cartoon on for them to watch. John went into the refrigerator and started eating strawberries. But he had to bring them into the living room and leave drops of them all over the carpeting. Did I mention I stayed up until 12:30 a.m. steam cleaning the carpeting and the stairs? Yeah. And then the three of them pulled the chairs up to the sink and turned on the water and got really wet and the dishes didn't get any cleaner. (I know that was a grammatical error.)
He wanted to sleep in Jacobs bedroom tonight and so I let him. (Jacob sleeps in Brooke's bedroom on the top bunk). I told him he had to stay in his bed and not get out. I'm downstairs getting the computer and I hear footsteps. I go upstairs to find John face down on his pillow and he's faking sleep but breathing hard. So you know I know what he was doing. Faker.
On the other hand. Matthew is such a ray of sunshine. Today was his fifth day of school and he didn't cry when I left him. He likes to cuddle with his teachers, or sit on their laps at times. He's such a great little boy. I sent him to bed and he was at the window and I told him to get back to bed. He had this look on his face like he was going to cry. So I laid by his mattress and I rubbed his back and cuddled for a bit. I think he needs more reassurance now that hes going to school and away from me and his siblings.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
New. Brooke has a new haircut. I just cut off the back to give her a shorter "bob" style haircut. Daddy was sad to see the longer hair in the back go, but it was a form of a mullet and we just don't do mullets.
Jacob lost his tooth last night. His tooth was hanging on by a thread. or root. His adult tooth is even showing. I kept trying to pull the thing out, but he was such a baby about it. Buck up young man, there are a whole lot worse things in life. So he pulled it out by himself. I gave him a deadline though, I told him he had to do it before 10:00 p.m. last night or the Tooth Fairy would not be able to guarantee same day delivery of said money.
Matthew started Early Childhood school this week. He attends Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 8:30 to 11:03. He has two teachers in his classroom all the time and then has additional speech therapy on those day in class too. His teachers just love him. He's such a sweetheart, who wouldn't? All three days though as I backed out of the classroom he started crying. Its harder in some ways than when Jacob cried at preschool. He's 3 and very much innocent and vulnerable. He is such a sweet child and I actually enjoy being his parent. Although, it seems like I don't have the time to cry about it being that I'm dragging around the other two.
The frustrating. Jacob has been acting very badly the last week or so. Its ticking me off. I've actually sent him in his room for an hour or so at a time. Its called "quiet time" in some households or its called "stay away from your mom or she'll wring your neck" time in my house. I just took all four out for a walk and he wanted to ride his bike. I gave him my expectations before we left. When I stay stop, he needs to stop. He didn't. Finally almost 3/4 around our circle a neighbor stopped him and made him wait until I caught up. I told him right away his bike was going away for a week and he was going to go to his room until daddy got home. Then I came up with the brilliant conclusion that to really hurt him was to take away his "boat" privileges. That means he can't play in our boat that's sitting in our garage. Now he plays in this boat hours a day if he could so I'm hoping that this means he'll remember how not fun this punishment was and listen.
What's over? Winter. I think we won't have any more snow. Its actually nice to get outside without coats on.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Sandra felt as low as the heels of her shoes when she pulled open the florist shop door, against a November gust of wind. Her life had been as sweet as a spring breeze and then, in the fourth month of her second pregnancy, a "minor" automobile accident stole her joy. This was Thanksgiving week and the time she should have delivered their infant son. She grieved over their loss. Troubles had multiplied.
Her husband's company "threatened" to transfer his job to a new location. Her sister had called to say that she could not come for her long awaited holiday visit. What's worse, Sandra's friend suggested that Sandra's grief was a God-given path to maturity that would allow her to empathize with others who suffer. "She has no idea what I'm feeling," thought Sandra with a shudder "Thanksgiving? Thankful for what?" she wondered.. "For a careless driver whose truck was hardly scratched when he rear-ended me? For an airbag that saved my life, but took my child's?"
"Good afternoon, can I help you?" Sandra was startled by the approach of the shop clerk. "I . . . I need an arrangement," stammered Sandra. "For Thanksgiving? I'm convinced that flowers tell stories, " she continued. "Are you looking for something that conveys 'gratitude' this Thanksgiving?" "Not exactly!" Sandra blurted out. "In the last five months, everything that could go wrong has gone wrong." Sandra regretted her outburst, and was surprised when the clerk said, "I have the perfect arrangement for you."
Then the bell on the door rang, and the clerk greeted the new customer.... "Hi, Barbara, let me get your order." She excused herself and walked back to a small workroom, then quickly reappeared, carrying an arrangement of greenery, bows, and what appeared to be long-stemmed thorny roses. Except the ends of the rose stems were neatly s nipped: there were no flowers. "Do you want these in a box?" asked the clerk. Sandra watched - was this a joke? Who would want rose stems with no flowers! She waited for laughter, but neither woman laughed. "Yes, please," Barbara replied with an appreciative smile. "You'd think after three years of getting the special, I wouldn't be so moved by its significance, but I can feel it right here, all over again," she said, as she gently tapped her chest. Sandra stammered, "Ah, that lady just left with . . . uh . . . she left with no flowers!" "That's right," said the clerk. "I cut off the flowers. That's the 'Special'. I call it the Thanksgiving Thorns Bouquet. Barbara came into the shop three years ago, feeling much as you do today," explained the clerk. "She thought she had very little to be thankful for. ** **She had just lost her father; the family business was failing; her son had gotten into drugs; and she was facing major surgery. That same year I had lost my husband," continued the clerk. "For the first time in my life, I had to spend the holidays alone. I had no children, no husband, no family nearby, and too much debt to allow any travel." "So what did you do?" asked Sandra. "I learned to be thankful for thorns," answered the clerk quietly. "I've always thanked God for the good things in my life and I never questioned Him why those good things happened to me, but when the bad stuff hit, I cried out, 'Why? Why me?!' It took time for me to learn that the dark times are important to our faith! I have always enjoyed the 'flowers' of my life, but it took the thorns to show me the beauty of God's comfort! You know, the Bible says that God comforts us when we're afflicted, and from His consolation we learn to comfort others." Sandra sucked in her breath, as she thought about what her friend had tried to tell her. "I guess the truth is I don't want comfort. I've lost a baby and I'm angry with God."
Just then someone else walked in the shop. "Hey, Phil!" the clerk greeted the balding, rotund man. "My wife sent me in to get our usual Thanksgiving arrangement . . twelve thorny, long-stemmed stems!" laughed Phil as the clerk handed him a tissue wrapped arrangement from the refrigerator. "Those are for your wife?" asked Sandra incredulously. "Do you mind telling me why she wants a bouquet that looks like that?" "Four years ago, my wife and I nearly divorced," Phil replied. "After forty years, we were in a real mess, but with the Lord's grace and guidance, we trudged through problem after problem, the Lord rescued our marriage. Jenny here (the clerk) told me she kept a vase of rose stems to remind her of what she had learned from "thorny" times. That was good enough for me. I took home some of those stems. My wife and I decided to label each one for a specific "problem" and give thanks for what that problem taught us." As Phil paid the clerk, he said to Sandra, "I highly recommend the Special!"
"I don't know if I can be thankful for the thorns in my life" Sandra said to the clerk. "It's all too . . fresh." "Well," the clerk replied carefully, "my experience has shown me that the thorns make the roses more precious. We treasure God's providential care more during trouble than at any other time. Remember that it was a crown of thorns that Jesus wore so we might know His love....Don't resent the thorns." Tears rolled down Sandra's cheeks. For the first time since the accident, she loosened her grip on her resentment. "I'll take those twelve long-stemmed thorns, please," she managed to choke out. "I hoped you would," said the clerk gently. "I'll have them ready in a minute." "Thank you. What do I owe you?" "Nothing.. Nothing but a promise to allow God to heal your heart...The first year's arrangement is always on me." The clerk smiled and handed a card to Sandra. "I'll attach this card to your arrangement, but maybe you would like to read it first."
It read: "My God, I have never thanked You for my thorns. I have thanked You a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorns. Teach me the glory of the cross I bear; teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I have climbed closer to You along the path of pain. Show me that, through my tears, the colors of Your rainbow look much more brilliant." Praise Him for the roses; thank Him for the thorns. God Bless all of you. Be thankful for all that the Lord did and does for you. "Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly, and leave the rest to God." We often try to fix problems with WD-40 and Duct tape. God did it with nails. (This last paragraph made me cry.)
Monday, April 13, 2009
Sunday, April 12, 2009
I really enjoyed the babies birthday. I love to celebrate birthday and get them all hyped up for it. I want them to have great memories of their birthdays and fun things we do. I'm the type of person, if you ask me how old I am, I'll say 33 1/2. If my husband let me, we would be celebrating 1/2 birthdays for the kids (and me).
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Friday, April 10, 2009
Its ironic we call it Good Friday because Jesus died on this day. He suffered for all our sins. Wow. That's so overwhelming that someone could love me so much to die for me and everyone else. Sometimes I go days without saying a proper prayer or taking the time to praise God for everything He has done. I do pray before I go to sleep, but I am usually so tired that I fall asleep before I say what I really need to say.
I try to model and be a living example for Jacob and the triplets, but I fall short. I try to give Jacob's homework and Christ's Light stuff as much time as it should be. I don't get Jacob to church as often as I should. (Although my thoughts on that subject about going to church every week doesn't automatically save you, its whats in your heart)
When I do go to church, the sermon always touches me in some way that I can see how God is integral in my life. Without Him, where would I be? Where would my children be?
Lately, Pastor Tim has been doing sermon series and they really hit home. We have a sister church too in Appleton called The Core and Jacob and I went once and Pastor Ski had a really good sermon series too. It was about why there is suffering in this world.
These called servants who stand in front of us each Sunday and string together some bible verses and how they apply to our lives, its truly a gift. I think we've all sat through some sermons or chapels thinking what is the point? when will this end? Which probably is wrong on a whole bunch of levels.
One thing I'm grateful for besides the DVR is taped sermons that I can watch at my leisure.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
you hear Master of Puppets (Metallica) on the way home and you are happy to stop at the red light for a little extra listening time.
you come home from work and your awesome husband has done some laundry and cleaned most of the floors.
you have not been kicked or hit by your three year old children. Or spit at.
your kids pile on top of you because they missed you so much.
you can find matching socks that are clean.
your kids go to bed without complaint and don't trash their rooms. (this is wishful thinking and not yet reality)
Today I went into the cemetery to get some info on the tombstones of my fathers side of the family for a family tree project. Guess what ancestry I am with these names, Frederic, Wilhelm, Caroline, Sophia, Oscar, Mamie. Then came home and played outside with the little ones for a bit and then went to Jacob's school to work in the library. I've decided that I want to become a librarian. I could do that for eight hours a day. Only problem is that I don't want to interact with people. Just put me in a cubbyhole and classify books, enter them into the system, put them on the shelves. I'll have to dust off my Dewey Decimal System class notes from Mr. Buege.
Then I got to see Jacob playing with the kids at school. I drove for a class trip last week and he was interacting well with the boys in the car. He also says hi and goodbye to his classmates. Otherwise he has been very shy and withdrawn with the other kids. I watched him out the window and he was trying to play with his older cousin who is two years older, who was playing pretend guns or something with friends. He ran around with them, but never was really part of the group. Then he went on the monkey bars to talk to some girls, but I don't know if they didn't say anything to him or not so he left. He looked like a lost little boy trying to find someone or something to play with. Then he played on the slide and stayed in that area, but there were bigger boys there and they were energetic in their play. My heart aches for him. I think he's trying to fit in, but doesn't know how. I'm not sure if he is waiting for kids to ask him to play or what the deal is.
I never had issues with making friends and was also outgoing as a child so dealing with a child who is more shy and self-conscience is frustrating at times. I don't know how he feels or if he realizes that he is not fitting in. But it hurts my heart to see him rebuffed by children and then he'll just stand off to the side. I don't' think the kids are doing it on purpose, they are just carrying on and playing. He's just a sensitive little boy.
I don't care if he is the most popular, smartest or best athlete, I just want him to be able to carry on a conversation and be a part of a group. I don't want him to be the one always standing alone at recess or never being invited to play.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
I bought a preschool table to go in our dining room for the kids to play on. This table did not hold all the presents. I think they should be occupied for at least a few weeks. The theme was Sponge Bob Square pants. Its a nice neutral theme. Although its kind of creepy falling asleep on the couch and then looking up to see Sponge Bob's face over your head.
Brooke has been an absolute monster. I think its due to them not being in their cribs anymore. They can get in and out of their beds and they are staying up later fooling around and even nap time is really challenging. There is lots of running around and giggling. So I may have to change the wording to "quiet time" because I need a break. I need a break from my children. I need quiet, I need to be alone and not be elbowed, jumped on and licked.
Matthew and John still need to be separated during the day because they tend to play and someone likes to rip down wallpaper in their room. Seriously, I will string John up by his feet and leave him like that if he rips more down. I'd like to wipe that mischievous smirk off his face.
It doesn't sound like I'm really liking my job right now. Well, these times are very frustrating keeping the consistency really is wearing. But on a happier note, when I take all three to the store, it has been much easier. I still can't do more than one store without meltdowns, but how many grown men can you take shopping in multiples stores?
I seriously was really close to grabbing a drink today. And smoking. And it didn't help that we got to the YMCA late today. I took all four down to the dressing room and then sent Jacob out to the pool while I got the triplets to the drop-in day care. Went back downstairs and he wasn't in the pool with the rest of his class.
First thought is that there is only one way out of the YMCA and the people working by the door know Jacob. So I knew he was still in the building somewhere. So I went back into the family locker room and most of the private rooms were being used. So I started calling his name. When I realized that the only other place he was familiar with was Adventure Alley I started heading there only to hear me being paged over the loudspeaker. He was in adventure alley with three directors looking after him. He did really well, he told the lady working he was looking for me, he knew my name and when the director of swimming said she'd take him to swimming lessons, he said that he would stay right there until I got there.
This is going to turn me more grey than I already am. On Saturday, we had the FVMOM spring rummage sale and there are tons of people around. He was going between my booth and my sister Joan's booth. I went over to talk to him and he wasn't there. He wasn't by my sister Julie and he wasn't by another lady Angela that I know he knows. So I thought he went to the bathroom by himself. He's becoming more independent which has its upside and its downside to certain situations like this. He insisted on going into the boys bathroom earlier that day so I knew he would have gone in there. I heard voices when I cracked the door, but I didn't want to go in and scare some poor boys. Another lady I know said she hadn't seen Jacob out there so I sent another boy in to see who was in the bathroom. It wasn't him. So a thousand things are going through my head. There are strangers around, its busy, the doors are open to the outside. So as tears start to cloud my eyes and I feel my heart beating in my throat, he walks in from being outside. His cheeks were flushed from the cold. He had been outside by the truck blowing bubbles. And the truck was parked aways from the door. I hugged him and told him that he cannot leave the building without telling me. Sigh. He just does not realize the dangers around him.
People keep asking me now that the triplets are 3 if things are easier. Is 3 some magic age where they start to do everything by themselves and listen? Three is worse than two. They start to be able to reason with you and they are really stubborn without any substance behind their reasoning. They have quick tempers and short attention spans.
Now sure, I don't have to feed them every three hours and I'm not up all night with them. But when I put them down when they were infants, they stayed where I put them. I could also place them in swings or bouncy seats and go do something. But then again, I had more help when they were infants. So I guess its a toss up. I think I'll feel like things are easier after they are potty-trained.
And speaking of that, Brooke has regressed to wanting to wear diapers. However, she still only has one or two wet diapers a day and holds it very well. She just is learning "the feeling" of when she has to go and has not figured out how to relax and let it all out.
Yes, that was TMI. But its potty-training and its my life. Believe me, I can't wait to go a day without touching poop.