Saturday, January 22, 2011

Forget murphy...

big brother corrals little sister while mama vacuums
cause they don't want her to get "sucked up".
Let me tell you about the laws-not of attraction, physics, or the universe, but of the "mamahood". I wish someone had taken a second to jot some of these down for me before the first darlin' arrived. It would have been most helpful, in retrospect.

If you want some quiet, as in no whining, no mama justice renderings, no babies cryin', turn on that loud, out-of-date vacuum and take your sweet time to clean the whole house. Not so great for your back, but awesome for getting kids to work things out for themselves while you pretend you are deaf beyond the whizzing of gears.

Mr. growth spurt
One millisecond after you clean the windows, little innocent hands will be stuck into mouths and then smeared to decorate said previously cleaned windows. This art class favorite works on car windows too.

Immediately after you purchase a bunch of clothing that fits your kids perfectly, there will be a growth spurt-especially after those nice expensive shoes and holiday clothing purchases.

off the floor, in the fingers...
Bits of who-knows-what will end up in the baby's mouth if left on the floor. There are no exceptions to this rule. This is why you see all the moms vacuuming. It has nothing to do with perfection in cleaning. We just don't wanna go to the ER and we like the peace and quiet as described above.

You can take kids to the potty before you leave the house and withhold liquids for 24 hours, and a child will still do the pee pee dance once you get to the mall or grocery. Never fails- though the dance is kinda cute when you get used to it.
only a face this cute could ask
the same question 20x
and get away with it...

Morning coffee is typically re-warmed-what five times? Don't get me started on cold meals. This is a natural diet plan for post pregnancy mamas. Kids will eat everything off their mamas plates including veggies. Come on, if it's on my plate, then it has to be fabulous right?

Is it possible to repeat the same answer more than 20 times in a row and keep your cool? And you thought high school was the ultimate test for "coolness"!

Seeing one child teach another is a moment of perfection, and just as rare.

If you have an outfit you like, you know one for outings not including a grocery run, do not wear it around bottle, nursing, potty training stage darlin's. What goes in must come out and what goes up comes down.

and in the mouth it goes...
As soon as a parent gets ready to sit, a crisis of some kind will inevitably occur.

No one cries while you are in the shower, at least not loud enough to be heard above the water!

Doing laundry at midnight is a normal occurrence and fairly peaceful once you get used to it I must say.

If you get caught up on laundry, or dishes for that matter, stop and say a prayer of thanks for your mama voodoo magic because honey you have just performed a miracle that sadly will only last about half an hour.

Before you have kids, most of us say things that we will "never do" and you can take it to the bank that you will be eating most of those words! Bon appetite!

Right after you wash out everyone's sheets, including the baby's crib, there will be vomit, urine, or spit up. It's a bit like washing your car to get it to rain.

Babies think biting during nursing is tres funny. Mama, not so much.

my main "entertainer"
The lack of privacy you receive in the hospital during childbirth is pretty reflective of the sort of privacy that comes with raisin' darlin's. Well, maybe you do get more at the hospital now that I think about it because at least the nurses don't ask questions about rolls, marks, and "whatnot" that they observe.

window paintings
There is nothing more beautiful than seeing your kids share, seriously.

A clean playroom is an oxymoron, Mary Poppins assisted cleaning aside.

When a child does something great like stay dry all night or sleep through the night, don't count on it happening two nights in a row. You know, one step forward and three steps back, sigh....

Babies and children love paper, plastic, boxes, sticks and rocks way more than toys. This is always really evident on Christmas morning right after we've spent all our cashola on 'em.

At some point I realized singing the children to sleep was as calming to me as it was to them.

You will at least once, say or do something and think, "that is something my mother would have done".

love of cardboard toys
If you are sitting down having a moment of peace, you have very likely forgotten something you were supposed to be doing. There is always a payment, right ladies?

I used to have an aunt say to me that she often toyed with the idea of flushing her kids down the toilet. Of course I am old enough now to see that they wouldn't fit, but then I get the gist a little clearer too.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

What we found in the woods...

It's hard to figure out much to do in the days following Christmas. It's cold and the darlin's are still hyped up on the high of the holidays but the new toys don't always keep them busy enough to fill the void. So we bundled up and headed outdoors before Mr. Darcy started his next semester of "professorhood". I was delighted as ever to see Mr. Darcy get into the project with his usual emphatic gusto. The darlin's would follow this guy anywhere!

I recently came across a book that inspired me. No surprise, most all my reads do ;-) We gathered rocks, sticks, wild berries, leaves, branches, stumps, and acorns. This pointed petrified wood is a "chair" of sorts. 

The darlin's piled these treasures around the base of two trees in the edge of the woods and topped their creations with straw.... this darlin' packed some acorns into a little opening in the bark at the base of the oak tree...

 Well, we hope for some magical miniature visitors but we know at least we have seen birds, squirrels, and bugs checking out the new "magical" dwellings and for now that is enough. This darlin' made a "living room" for the visitors.
We watch from the windows to see what the icy morning dew brings to our creations. It was neat to watch the rain slip off the leafy roofs. Squirrels darted in and out of this arched opening. Would you believe Mr. Darcy "decorated" this one with the magnolia leaves himself? I was so impressed. I'd want to hang out here too if I were a squirrel, seriously.

Only a light snow would have made the creations any better, and in southtown, well, that's not real likely. Of course, it could happen.
Still the rain dropping off these magnolia leaves was pretty cool too.

We leave little bits of food, berries, and nuts at the entry. The fairies may come while we are sleeping one darlin' says. Another chimes in that goblins and sprites have certainly been by "to make their mischief" from one mischief-maker to another perhaps... Hmmm....

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A year in pictures

A year of laughter, parties, friends, dancing, loved ones, reading, cuddle time, learning, new life, romping, praying, experiments, writing, singing, playing, pretending and loving....
We are so thrilled to get to do it all again in 2011! 
Start at the bottom for January or at the top for December. 
Blessings for a Happy New Year!

 The day before the year was over, our sweet fourth darlin' decided it was time to walk-she is just shy of 8 months old! There has been NO COACHING of any kind mind you!!! This is a serious gal!

...brothers got closer...

...four smiling faces on Christmas morning made me wanna burst with joy!

...sisters got closer...
...this is the Baby Jesus cake with the darlin's cousin. Love these sweet traditions to look forward to each year!

...little darlin' gets to open a gift for herself and chew on some paper!

...this is the oldest darlin's big time friend-see all those happy teeth!

...I made my sweet sister a collage of our vintage family photos for her birthday...

...these two darlin's love to share gooey kisses!

...the smallest darlin' in her holiday bonnet. These baby blues get me every time. Seriously.

...we celebrated our littlest darlin's first Christmas!

...we made fossils in the dough with our creatures...

...we finally got to hang all SIX stockings on the mantle! Yurrah!

...we colored, made pencil drawings and wrote thank you letters.

...we learned about peoples around the globe...

...we played with good ole playdoh-don't you love the smell of that stuff?! Reminds me of childhood.

...we made ornaments to give our friends for Christmas and some of them gave us ornaments right back!

...this darlin' had a girlfriend over for "tea"!

...the darlin's all wanted to wear their daddy's triathlon helmet. Oh joy, another opportunity to learn about taking turns...

...we tempted fate and took the darlin's to a historic home for Christmas-what a gorgeous place all decorated! thank goodness for grandma and aunt who came along to help with the little fingers!

...darlin's went out to eat with new friends...

...and behaved themselves!!!

...this is the newest darlin' and she is on the move! Ready or not, here she comes!

...the first darlin' and the last darlin' look much alike ;-) kind of feels like a circle for this Mama!

... this is my sweet sister who helps me out and makes me smile (and sometimes "donkey" laugh)...what else could you wish for in a sister?!

...this is my brother in law and his darlin' goddaughters who think he's tops!

...this is my sweet darlin' and her new best friend...don't they look like they are related? Seriously?

...this is my sweet friend and I with our new babies on a fun playdate-these gals are gonna be best friends for sure just like we are!

...the oldest darlin' went to the homeschool geography fair and it was so cool! Mama learned a lot as usual. This is my secret reason to homeschool so I can catch up!

...this is the darlin's new friend-he is one smart guy with rockstar manners too!

...brothers making tracks anywhere and everywhere TOGETHER FINALLY!!! Ahhh, sharing, it's enough to make a mama cry with joy.

...for Halloween, we went to a fall festival and went on an exciting hayride-no one fell out thank goodness! By the way, these guys started out looking like mean pirates but the costumes apparently cramped their style ;-)

...this is at the fall festival too-one talented soccer darlin'. Wait and see folks, it looks like he has the ball tied to his shoes with string he guards so close!

...there were lots of train layouts in our house this year-and sure to be more in 2011...though hopefully not in my exact pathway!

...there were lots of floor picnics...yummy play food is calorie free!

...Mr. Darcy celebrated his 20th high school reunion. Those guys were lots of fun and we were away from the darlin's long enough to leave me feelin' pretty outside myself! darlin' discovered the wonder of fairyland and wanted to "don" it every single day!

...this darlin's loves him some drama! Mama and boys went to see the production "Annie"!

...Mr Darcy and his boss ran a triathlon and lived to tell about it!

 ...we had some fun beach days...

 ...we registered for OLG homeschool again-what would we do without this great group of families!?!?

...Mr. Darcy gave me a commissioned picture of the cathedral, where we were married 14 years ago, for our anniversary and took me out to dinner.

...the darlin's don't wait around for Halloween to pretend play!

...our sweet friends from Virginia came for tea. We missed them as soon as they left!

...the darlin' boys learned to hang around, catwalk, jump to new heights, and flip at gymnastics...

...our darlin' girl discovered a love of tea parties and now makes sweet treats for all the peeps she loves!!! darlin's learned to help each other can't see me in the corner with a tear in my eye, sigh... girl darlin's had their first tea party ever with aunt and grandma along to make it more special! The tea room rocks and so do girlie bonnets and miniature teacups!

...this is my grandma after the baptism reception, and I would be lost without her constant helping hands and sweet affection!

...the Archbishop baptized another darlin' for us this year! He tells the most interesting stories! I love this guy!'s our crew at the baptism of the littlest darlin'...

...this is Father's Day-daddy times four! This was a very special Father's Day for our family!

...My daddy and I celebrate his birthday with a bit of lunch and a wiggly new baby...I love this guy!

...this was on Father's Day sister and I love this grandfather-BIG time!

...there was a lot of getting wet and fighting over the hose!  See the "drama mama"?!

...I turned 34 this year....sigh.

...this is before we came home from the hospital with our fourth darlin'...

...this is my mother's day present just a few days old! Isn't she adorable all cuddled up in her "wrapping"?

...right after the fourth darlin' was born...our little May baby!

...this is when little girl darlin' discovers she is going to have a sister! Pure joy for everyone since we never find out what we are having ahead of time!

...boy darlin's celebrate their birthday together since they are born a week was a crazy fun day at the park in the spring with our close family and friends.

...this is Easter before the fourth little darlin' was born. I am not pictured here because the frame was not wide enough to capture the prego mama shot!

...the boys learned to horse around this year "on each other" instead of their daddy. Daddy's back is thrilled, seriously.

 ...both our boy darlin's fiddled away this year. Did you know they made 'em this small?

...the oldest darlin' orchestrated animal re-enactments and gave nightly performances at "creature theatre"...

...there were still only five of us when we went to see the Curious George Production and the three darlin's LOVED it! Can't beat Curious George!

...we frolicked in the snow, which is rare in darlin'sville, southtown where we live!

...this is while darlin' #4 was still in the womb early in the year. we read A LOT in darlin'ville.