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Does any mom actually have it all together?

Some days I feel like this....

But more often, it is more like this....


My Sweet Tiny Tot, the Fish Killer

Who ever said being a stay-home-mom and housewife was boring? Our sweet baby Indigo has taken the title from Ezrah, who we named "the Destroyer".

I mean, just look at her? This was Indigo at the Tiny Tot parade in downtown Fort Collins this past Wednesday. Would you ever think this cute, sweet little ladybug could be named the destroyer? If only fish could talk...

Most often, her favorite pastime is climbing up on the kitchen table and throwing everything that is on the table, onto the floor. So we've has several broken dishes and bowls lately. Just what we need; a bigger shortage of cereal bowls in this house.

And she has learned how to open the fridge all by herself now. You can just imagine the damage she does with this new found skill.
If only the kitchen floor could talk...
Unfortunately, no one can get into the fridge now.
Oh the fish, Katati (pronounced Ka-tah-tee), our sweet little goldfish who never hurt anyone. Well I was holding little Indigo on my hip and we were walking down the hall on our way to change her diaper, something we do about 10 times a day every day since she was born. So we are walking past the table furniture thing that holds the fish bowl and other pretty knick knacks.
She grabs the top of the fish bowl and in a matter of seconds, I mean there was no stopping it: SMASH!
The beautiful wood floor, freshly mopped and everything, covered in fish water, rainbow pebbles and broken glass. The mess covered the entire front living room floor. So I screamed like a crazy person for Ezrah and Jack to hurry and come and get Indigo before she got hurt on broken glass. God forbid I interrupt a game of Minecraft, but they heard the crash and knew it had to be serious.
Where's  Katati! Our goldfish! Our fishie was a goner, what with glass everywhere and obviously no water. I looked and looked all over the floor, amongst the broken glass and millions of rainbow pebbles for our fishie. And there he was! Flipping and flopping next to a huge piece of broken glass.
I think fish are slimy and gross. I grabbed a cup from the kitchen with water in it and tried to get the fish into the cup by laying the cup down on its side and hopefully scooping the fish with it, so I didn't have to touch it. Of course the way I was doing it was costing poor Katati more and more precious oxygen. He was flipping and flopping all over like crazy.
Finally I just swept the fish really fast with my hand into the sideways cup, only touching the slimy flopper for a split second. And the genius that I am poured the water out in the cup on the floor because I had laid the cup down to sweep the fish in. So he's in the cup, but he's still flopping because there's no water in it. I ran to the sink and put the cup with Katati in it under the faucet and turned on the water. Whew...he's okay. The temperature of the water was God knows what, but Katati was okay.
So now, the floor. How on Earth do I clean this up? However I did it I had to do it fast because there was glass everywhere and water traveling under the couch. I had Ezrah and Jack quarantine Indigo in a bedroom. Towels! Madelyn really wanted to help, so I told her to grab towels and put on shoes. So she comes down the hall with a pile of towels in her arms so high I can't even see her face. She has on her dress-up Cinderella shoes that Grandma Angie got her in Disney world. It was a really cute image.
Somehow after an hour or so,  I got it cleaned up. I texted Dan and told him all this and realized that I completely forgot about changing Indigo's diaper, which was what I was doing in the first place. So Dan says, "Well if you try to kill fish and break fish bowls you just have to sit in a poopie diaper for an hour." This made me laugh, even though it wasn't a poopie diaper. So check out our new fish bowl! I'm sure Katati prefers this Christmas mixing bowl to Jack's chocolate milk cup with an inch full of fresh tap water and I'm sure it's definitely more comfortable than gasping for water around the floor amongst broken glass.
What an evening. Somehow I managed to kick out an awesome dinner too! Let's hope today is less eventful.


Can't Stop Baking Cakes!

So after all these October birthdays, Dan asks me, how could you be making ANOTHER cake? I think I kind of have my technique down by the end of the month. So check the awesome awesome cake I made for our church's fall festival at ECC. It was the first cake to be taken from the cake walk!


Minecraft Cake Baking Lies

I am sorry to any of my faithful readers that I have not blogged in so long. Yes, to all 3 of you...you have my apologies. It is October and  3 out of my 4 kids have birthdays.
As practicing attachment parenting to older kids, a topic that I so try to explore and define. I believe that just because we cannot breastfeed, wear them in a sling, or co-sleep, with our big kids does not mean we cannot be attached parents! 

I think this month, I came closer to the definition of APing older kids while celebrating their birthdays. Of course lots of hugs, kissing them goodnight, helping with homework and stuff like that is all part of it. However this month, a month of celebrations, I  showed my kids that I respect what they are interested in and helped them to celebrate, not just their birth, but celebrate who they are! On October 5, my Indigo turned 2. We had her party at Cool Beans, which is a really cool place to have a party for a toddler. As far as attachment parenting, she is still my baby and still very easy to practice APing as she is still nursing like all day and we cosleep.  But in spirit of my point here in respecting and celebrating who our kids are as a way of keeping the attachment parenting frame of mind, I accomplished with her dress!

We already know that she is not the frilly princess girl that Madelyn is. I didn't dress her in a taffeta flowery pink dress for her party like Madi always wore. No, I respected who she was and she wore a simple deep purple velour Hanna dress from Once Upon a Child with funky leggings from Clothes Pony that her Godmother Susie got for her.

On October 18, my second son, Jack turned 10. Do I wish he was not completely obsessed with the xBox game, Minecraft? Yes I would like his main interests to be something a little more productive, but I love Jack for who he is. He absolutely loooves this game called Minecraft, a video game where you build worlds and is chracterized by the entire game being made up of blocks and huge pixels. I would have loved to bake him a cake with sports or footballs on it, no one really wants to have their son be obsessed with a video game, but it is about JACK, not me.  He wanted so much for his party to be Minecraft inspired. His party was a Loveland Laser Tag Fun Center and if you've ever had a party at a commercial location, you would know that you must bring a cake that is commercially prepared. I totally broke the rules to be sure my son had the Minecraft cake he wanted. I was going to pass my homemade Minecraft cake as professional!
I bought a cake box from Michael's and a cake bottom board from King Soopers. I didn't think covering a cut box with tin foil would pass as professional, nor would a plate from home. My plan was to print out a fake Whole Foods or King Soopers logo and barcode onto a label on my home printer and stick it on the box. I had a bit of luck because when I purchased the cake board from King Sooper, she printed out a barcode label with the KS logo and didn't stick it on anything. So there it was! A real King Sooper label ready to stick on my cake box! It said 28 cents on it, as that was the price of the cardboard cake board, but hopefully the staff at the laser tag place wouldn't be looking that close!
Here's my son's Minecraft themed cake encorporating the spirit of the giant pixel game! I don't think King Sooper could have or would have made a cake like this...

Each "pixel" was put on indiviually. If you know the game, you would really appreciate this game. Unless you were my son, Jack. "Cool cake, Mom", he said after about 5 hours of applying pixels and being sure they were the exact same colors as the game. God bless Jack's best friend, Aidan; he thought the cake was the coolest thing ever and really made me feel good. he's such a sweetie! If it weren't for Aidan, I might have resigned to never try so hard again!
However, I did get some more complements on the cake at the party although I could not accept them. You see, the manager of Loveland Laser Tag happened to be a big Minecraft fan. "Where did you get this cake?" Hmmmmm.


Disney World Trip, Part 1 - Magic Kingdom

 Say goodbye to the tossing and turning, the sleepless nights in awaiting my re-cap of our Disney World trip from the eyes of an attached mama! Sorry it took me forever to get to my blog as it's been a week since we've been back, but we had jumped right into our crazy life with school, kids, babies, practices, tournaments and laundry. Oh the laundry after a vacation! You don;t need to hear about that. Because the Disney trip was so adventurous, I will devote a post to each theme park.I guess I never realized what it would be like at Disney World with children.  My own children! It wasn't so much, enjoying Disney "through" their eyes. It was more like enjoying it "with" them, because Big Daddy and I were having just as much fun.
The Journey
Well, to Dan's  step-mother's horror, we missed our flight. She works for United airlines and thanks to her connections, we were on a flight just about 2 hours later. We did arrive an hour and half early to DIA, but life happens. It was actually quite an adventure, running and rushing. We tried our best, but babies poop, kids have to pee really really bad, and Mama needed a ciggarette before we left the house. Whatever, everything happens as it should and our destiny is layed out before us. Who am I to question destiny?
The plane ride was not a non-stop to FL anymore, but oh boy, Indy was non-stop breastfeeding on the flight. She had a virus the week before and never got rid of that darn diarrhea. Needless to say, I became very familiar with the changing area on the plane. Glad they had one because I remember flying with Big Boy as a baby and nowhere to change a diaper.
Without me realizing it until the day of our journey, Indy had learned to verbalize her word for breastfeeding. And so, in amazement of herself feeling she can communicate, she has now become obssessed with "na nas". Not only did I become familiar with the baby changing area, but if I'm not mistaken, the stranger next to me became familiar with my breast.

Arrive in the Fort (Lauderdale)
We walk off the airplane, just a few hours later than expected to find my Mom greeting us with tears and my Dad a huge happy grin. I can appreciate my mama's emotions as I couldn't imagine not seeing my children for so long. It was our first glimpse of true love on our trip and we haven't even gotten to fairy tale land.

The Bus

My Dad had a Suburban waiting for us. This is how destiny works. If we didn't miss our flight, he would've picked up a mini-van that was short a seat. Because he picked up the car  reservation later, the car rental place had apologized that he couldn't hold the mini-van, but offered a Suburban instead...for the same price! Now we would all ride the 3 hours in comfort to Disney World the next morning.

Our ResortWe stayed upon the Disney grounds at a beautiful place called the "Old Key West Resort" We had a 2-bedroom villa and a full kitchen. It was great that we were able to make food and breakfast before we left for the parks. Do you know that feeling when you're at a hotel with kids and everyone's starving and mamas and dads need coffee and you have to get everyone ready before getting all the morning neccessities? No worries here! Loved this place! There were Mickey ears on the fences and a Mickey ear slide at one of the pools.

Magic Kingdom
Without further ado, let's get into it, shall we? Ahhh, Magic Kingdom. Arriving at the gates, I shared in as much excited anticipation as the kids. I think My Dad did as well.

The second we got onto Main Street USA...none of us knew what to do first. Take a picture with Walt? Sure that sounds good.

We walk up Main Street and were in awe of Cinderella's castle. I couldn't believe we were looking at it. I hoped Princess felt the same.

My Mom and I thought a good idea to rent a double stroller and went to pick that up. Us attached mamas prefer wearing our kids, so i did have the Ergo, but we needed a stroller for Madi and when I went on ride as that baby couldn't. We walked straight through Cinderella's castle and were face to face with the most amazing incredible carousel we have ever seen. The horses and carriages were immense, the music was beautiful and oh... it puts the carousel at NewWest Fest to shame. We decided that would be our first ride and the entire family went on. 
I was riding the horsey with Princess beside me. I see my Dad behind me and smiling. Was he taking this in? We were here! We made it! Was he enjoying the moment, entrapured in the fact that this dream came true? I knew it was early and we were all still in shock that we actually AT Disney World all together. But I looked at him and smiled and hoped he was savoring the moment.

Next stop...Pirates of the Carribean. To Adventureland we go.
At this point, Indy fell asleep on my back and I stood the Pirates ride out so she could sleep. I enjoyed walking around, enjoying the familararity of the Magic Kingdom in memories of when I was younger. I watched a little Pirates show, got a soft serve vanilla cone and some cotton candy for the kids when they got off the ride. Here's a pic they took inside the ride. Amazing likeness to Johnny, huh?

Dan emerged from the ride like this

We decided to head off to Story land to see if we could spot some princesses as Princess was nagging "I want to see princesses" We realized that the characters don't just walk around anymore. Nope, you've got to wait in line to see them to, just like any other ride. Boys were itching for a roller coaster at this point too.
But we decided on "It's a Small World" ride. A classic.

The kids loved it and Indy, to our surprise enjoyed it so much! I hadn't really thought about the baby really enjoying anything, but she pointed in amazement at almost everything! Here's us waiting in line for Small World.

I really enjoyed It's a Small World" ride. It seemed so sweet and cute and just a pure message. I loved how it and wondered if it was the inspiration for the World Showcase of Epcot. IMO, World Showcase at Epcot was the entire Small World ride, but with real live people, and on a bigger scale.

Strollers and Stroller Parking
So after a few rides, we realized that it was really different to be here with a stroller. It wasn't really the stroller in general, which I will critique in a sec, but just having a stroller makes things a little hard. I guess I never realized what it would be like at Disney World with a stroller. I guess I never realized what it would be like at Disney World with children!  My own children! It wasn't so much, enjoying Disney "through" their eyes. It was more like enjoying it "with" them, because Big Daddy and I were having just as much fun.
Anyway back to the logistics of Disney with a stroller. Outside every ride, every restaurant and attraction, there was "stroller parking". What a pain, but I guess you can't really take strollers on the lines or in the restaurants. It's just necessary, but a pain in the butt. I was thankful to have the Ergo because there were so many places I couldn't take the stroller and I did have a squirmy toddler who loves to run and explore without looking behind. So she goes in the Ergo and on my back or Big Daddy's back. I want to mention that this was the very first time, out of all 4 kids, Big Daddy wore one of our babies in public. I was so proud!
Due to the bulky nature of the double rental stroller, my Mom and I decided to take our own the next day. Even though it's a single, it has more storage space and it's easier to manuver. And if Princess was tired she could sit and baby could be in the Ergo. The funny thing about strollers at Disney is there are "No Stroller Parking Signs" and Stroller Parking Signs". At one point, Big Daddy went to park the stroller and said there was a freakin' stroller valet. They always would move and arrange the strollers when we were on the rides, so when I went to retrieve it, I felt like an old lady coming out of the mall looking for her car.

And off we were to lunch at Peter Pan's place. Awesome food. Indigo had about 3 tons of mac and cheese and we all liked the food. The boys were DYING at this point to do a real roller coaster.

And off we were to lunch at Peter Pan's place. Awesome food. Indigo had about 3 tons of mac and cheese and we all liked the food. The boys were DYING at this point to do a real roller coaster.
So  we decided to head over to Tommorow Land and check out Space Mountain. On the way, the boys saw a cool driving racing car thing and the boys and girls split up. Madi and I did the Teacups, while the guys did some racing.
On the way, Princess finally decided she needed Minnie ears. With lots of choices, she chose these...

And so, with excitement and anticipation, we headed to Space Mountain. And guess who was braver than we all thought...Princess, who exactly made the height cut-off of 44 inches, wanted to go on Space Mountain. It is widely known in our family that I rode on Space Mountain when I was 3 years old and had peed in my pants. My Mom was a little scared for her to go andf so was I. We thought, well, it's a rite of passage I guess and she really wanted to go on. My Mom hung out with baby Indy and the rest of us were off into the dark, futuristic buidling of the infamous indoor roller coaster, Space Mountain.



The Mother Trail

I so long for the baby to nap and see my older ones off to school so that I can have a rest from the neverending journey of mamahood. Maybe I'll get a nice warm shower or mop the floors?  Maybe I can watch a sitcom about other pretty showered moms (who are actually dressed) with clean homes and children you never see. I need a break from the diaper changes and housework; a clearing on the trail, to just take a moment and to see the beauty of what I have.
I imagine that being a parent is like climbing a mountain. You start out on a lovely open trail that is relatively flat. You are just so ready and excited to get going. You lead, your children happily follow. It is easy to look down and admire the wildflowers and pick some pinecones. You tell the kids, 'We have to get moving now, come on, let's go." You continue on, enjoying the view, but the trail begins to get tougher as iit winds on. You have to stop to catch your breath.  Your legs burn a bit as the trail becomes uphill. The trees become more dense and it's harder to see the view. You wonder how you'll make it any further. Just then, you come to a clearing. You feel the warmth of the sun and a field of long grass. You take a break, pick a few wildflowers, and watch the children run through the open field. You relax for a bit and enjoy the view.

But you cannot stop for long; the uphill trail is waiting and the kids are ready to go.  You are so tired, but have no choice but to go on. The kids will not wait and they run ahead without you. You push yourself a little harder and try your best to keep up and enjoy the hike.
Soon, you notice the trail has thinned and you suddenly realize you are completely lost. Which way to go? The kids say, "This way Mom!" but you just aren't sure that's the right way. You consult the map, the book of Love and Logic, but it doesn't have the answers. You try desperately to find a sign, leading you to the right way. You look upward. No wait, you look inward and follow your gut. It leads you back on the right trail. No longer lost, but tired and you want to stop for a break. The kids just want to keep going, so you keep up with a smile.

You see another clearing ahead and look forward to feeling the warm sun. You reach the field, but the sun is behind a cloud. You are still happy to rest. But the baby wants to nurse. It's not as sunny and warm as you expected, but you really do enjoy this view. 
Back on the trail. It's so steep! You are leading the way with true enjoyment.  According to the map, no more clearings ahead, but you find a nice unexpected bench to take your rest. The kids are running ahead, but notice you opening a bottle of water. They run back to you! Delighted they came back, you give the kids your bottled water to share, which happened to be the last one. You are truly more than happy to give it to them. You are just happy to be together. You enjoy watching the kids gulp down the water. Hiking is hard work!
Off you go again up what feels like a 90 degree angled trail. You try hard to show your kids that you are enjoying the journey as much as they are. Can they see that you are struggling? Can't they see how tired you are? Just then, your child offers you the last few sips of that bottled water. You remember how sweet they are, how thoughtful they are, how wonderful it is that you are turning out thoughtful, kind-hearted people. Both the water and the enlightenment give you the strength to make it through, just as you knew you could, and you create your own places to stop every now and then to enjoy the view.
I am still on my way to the summit. I'm sure the view will be the most beautiful thing I've ever seen and felt. I'll let you know when I get there!


Eating Cascade and Ice Cream

So yesterday's photo journal of Princess didn't come out how I hoped as it was a near insane day. I'm talking everything from having to call poison control, vomit, broken eye glasses, and a naked 5-year-old.

Big Boy had a sleepover with his buddy last night and poor Jackie always wants to hang. Big Daddy was working last night so i had to be the ref and it was just crazy. Big Boy doesn't want his little bro to bother him and princess is just all over this poor boy who does not have a little sister or little brother, so he probably thinks our house is totally weird. Exactly what Big Boy tries to avoid. I think when Princess was returning the blanket she stole from them and had it wrapped around her naked body was the highlight. "here's you blanket, boys" as she ripped it from her wearing only NOTHING underneath! Then Jackie was chasing Big Boy and his buddy around the house. jackie was crying because he wanted to hang with the big boys. Jackie, why would they want to hang with you if you are chasing them? Poor Jackie.

Oh and then I was cleaning up after dinner, loading the dishwasher, I turn around and baby Indy puked all over the floor with a Cascade Action Pac in her hand with a nice bite in it. Oh my God. What's the number to poison control? How do I not have that posted on the fridge? I gave her a drink of water which is what it said on the package. It also said "Do Not Induce vomiting". Shit! She just vomited!
I think of that movie "Heathers" when she drank the bleach...and dies! I can't believe I was thinking about the movie "Heathers" at a time like this. I dialed frantically and talked with the nicest lady who assured me she would be fine. She said it happens all the time (that's scary) and she told me there was a 99% chance that she would go through the rest of the night totally fine. And she did.

During the whole thing, it was actually dessert time for the other kids; ice cream. Indy was screaming that she wanted some. It was good that she was being her spunky self, both I and the lady at poison control thought. The lady at PC told me that the Cascade was irritating, so I thought I would give her some ice cream in case her throat hurt. Not that I normally give my 15-month-old ice cream, but this was an emergency. I felt so guilty that I let her eat ice cream right out of the tub while she was sitting on top of the table. I just hope that Indy didn't learn the lesson of "Eat Cascade Action Pac...get ice cream."  

Oh and being I mentioned Big Boy's broken eye glasses, I don't really know the story behind this. In the midst of the Cascade ingestion nightmare, I discovered the glasses in the hallway floor...in two pieces.

I almost forgot about the marinara sauce! How could I forget that! I was cleaning up the playroom so Big Boy and his buddy could settle in and watch a movie. They made mozzarella sticks and the bowl of marinara dipping was on top of the Lego cabinet. I picked up the empty plate, a few empty soda cans (Hansens- no caffiene), and the bowl of sauce and the sauce, the RED sauce i might add, went flying across the room, on all the blankets I just nicely layed out, the carpet and on Big Boy's friend's butt. Fun stuff. More laundry and cleaning. I could blame the boys for not cleaning up, but this was really my fault.

Oh Jeez, what a night. What will today bring? I'm scared! Who says you can't have adventure and excitement without leaving your house?


A 24-Hour Chronical of a Princess

Here's what I'm dealing with here...

So, Princess, who loves to dress-up was in 7 different outfits yesterday. I guess I never even realized just exactly how many times Princess changes her clothes until yesterday when I thought it would be fun to count. 
So today I thought I would chronical a 24-hour photo journal of each outfit she wears today and I will be updating it all day, so keep on checking back! I am not telling her i am doing this as to keep her natural flow. I'm just snapping photos of her everytime she gets dressed.                                                 
 8am:  Pajamas

8:15: Dressed for the day. Or so you thought!

9:02am:  Another fancy dress

9:30am: Snow White appears for a late breakfast 
Note: 3 changes and it's only 9:30 in the morning!

2:30pm: Dressed exactly like her Moxi Girl

Note: Her Moxi Girl is an equestrian and I even had to make the 1st place ribbon to match her doll.
She was in her Snow White dress for 6 hours -that's kind of a record! She even wore it out to pick up Big Boy at basketball.


Celebrating 2012..oh How We Evolved!

Happy New Year! Well I had a pretty exciting night on New Year's eve last night. Compared to back in the day, it probably was not at all exciting, but in 2012 our parenting and technology have evolved. B4K, (aka - before kids, or before 4 kids) I would have been at a Phish concert or a Widespread Panic concert danicing my ass off until the wee hours of the night along with 10,000 other people. But no, not in 2012. In 2012 I was enjoying being with my family and friends in my own home. Making strawberries and cream, jello fizzers for the kids and cappucino for myself to aide in staying up til midnight. It was a fabulous night!

Yesterday morning Big Daddy had the opportunity to fly to NYC for the Phish show at MSG. He almost went, but decided against it right before he was supposed to leave. Our great friend, Melfi, our son, Jack's Godfather and great longtime friend had an extra ticket. Big Daddy's stepmom works for United and we are able to fly anywhere for about $150 on standby. Stepmom checked the flights and he would've been able to get on a 2pm flight and in first class taboot. He turned it down. Big Daddy must be growing up!

That would have been the normal NYE I've celebrated the past 5 or so years. Just hanging with the kids and waiting for Big Daddy to come home after a show. However in the year 2012, we have the best of both worlds. The technology of 2012 allowed us to stream the Phish NYE show live and online and watch it on our flatscreen...in our living room! We danced in our living room with about 3 of our friends as opposed to 10,000 and got to dance with our kids. Even baby Indy was catching a groove to Fluffhead. And our kids had to listen to us telling them that if it weren't for that band on the TV, they wouldn't have been born. B4K, Big Daddy and I used to be "Phish heads" and follow the band across the country and that's how we met. It was an amazing time in our lives. On Phish tour, at a gas station in Wisconsin outside the Alpine Valley venue in the summer of 1999, I met and fell in love with Big Daddy. Big Boy was born about a year and half later.

Megan, one of my besties, also used to tour with Phish and she enjoyed the show on the TV just as much as us! Oh boy, times have changed for us all! She has 2 kids and had to deal with Mommy stuff as well.  As she was on her way to our house last night, her 9-year-old threw up in the car. driving 75 mph, her son puked in the back seat and half out the window. A far cry from hanging out in the "lot" getting ready for a Phish show. He was fine when they got to our house and was happy to play with my 9-year-old as they are besties too. When it got late, we set up all the kids in the playroom to watch School of Rock.

We welcomed 2012 with our best friends and kids all around us. I got to give Big Daddy a really smoochy kiss at midnight which I haven't done (on NYE) for years. After we kissed, he said "that made it all worth it." So I really do believe that for us, being home, being together, watching the Phish show live, was about the best New Year's eve I could've ever imagined.