Jesse Archives

Anytime my family goes to a friend’s house to swim there are too many kids in the pool for me to feel comfortable. Add in some more friends and their kids and grown men with beer and you suddenly have this perfect storm of chaos that can make any mom’s heart lodge firmly right in her throat.

On Monday we spent the day at a friends house watching the kids swim, eating good food, and trying to keep everybody from drowning.  Taking the kids to a pool is always a somewhat stressful venture for me but I really did have a good time and Kait got some great pictures with her fancy shmancy new camera.

Lanie is doing so much better at wearing her glasses so I was able to leave her contacts at home so she could get into the pool. She absolutely loves the water and smiled the entire time.

Jesse has completely overcome his fear of getting his head wet. He’s well on his way to learn to swim but it’s hard when you have lead for bones. The boy is quite slim but he is incredibly dense and sinks like a rock so learning to swim is a little more difficult for him.

And what’s with all the pool noodles?

There were tiny cans of soda and best good friends and life jackets that saved my sanity.

And sweet love birds who are THISCLOSE to being husband and wife.

And Lucy with her freckles and those incredible eyes that are a milky blue one minute and green the next.

Even though there were 14 minor children running around and almost as many adults, we had a pretty relaxed and safe Labor Day. There are so many more pictures and we had so much more fun but we’re headed out to the library and I’ve gotta go.

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What happened while I had a weekend

I wrote this post this morning but I needed to add pictures but Lanie woke up cranky and with an incredibly stuffy nose and I wasn’t able to get the pictures uploaded.  Now it is almost 8 pm and I fixed Lanie’s nose and ran and went to a Labor Day pool party and came home and put Lanie down for a very late nap and made dinner and got the pictures uploaded and the moment you have all been waiting for has arrived. You’re welcome.


Today is Labor Day. and while Labor Day is just a day off for many people, for my kids it’s the highlight of the year or something because all the little ones came running up to me shouting Mom! Happy Labor Day! when I got up this morning. I have never heard anybody say happy labor day before so this was unusual.

We are going to a friend’s house to swim and maybe that has something to do with it.

Over the weekend we had many plans to work on the kitchen and finish the table and clean out the closet but none of that happened.  The kitchen has been put aside in favor of getting our table done so we can use it again because all these kids eating on the floor in the living room is no longer working for me.

The table is almost finished. I’ve been saying almost for about 2 weeks now but I think almost is finally actually here. Just a couple more coats of urethane and it should ready to use.

The kitchen will get there. It’s just not happening as fast as I had thought it would because every time we get back to it something else needs to be done.

And I completely ignored the closet in favor of…  I don’t know. I don’t remember what I did instead.  Maybe I was cooking or something.  I feel like I am always cooking.

After church Rabbit washed the cars yesterday and that was super awesome and then he took the kids to the ball field.

We’re more of a football family and have never really played much baseball so Rabbit spent some time giving pointers on how to pitch and bat.

The boys were all like, Woah, Dad, you’re really good! Did you play on a team when you were younger or something?

Rabbit puffed his chest out a bit and answered them.  Yeah, I played a bit of Little League back in the day.

We only have three gloves so while some played ball, the others went to climb around and swing at the playground.

If you ask Maggie what she’s doing she’ll always, always, always reply, not swinging high enough!

I wish I had been able to go but Lanie was sleeping. Also, cooking food without children asking me 100 questions about what I am doing and why I am doing it and will there be mushrooms in it againThe opportunity to cook alone was just was too enticing.

Today’s tip: My kids like cauliflower rice better than actual rice so I make fried rice with cauliflower instead of rice. Last night we had bacon friend cauliflower rice and today everybody has gas.  I don’t know what my tip here is but I’m just saying, if you feed your kids cauliflower rice watch out.

 

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I woke up at 6 am yesterday morning. This may not seem super early to most of you but for me this is like a 6am-er waking up at 3. Lanie doesn’t usually fall asleep until after midnight and as hard as I’ve tried to change her bedtime she just keeps reminding me that Lanie does what Lanie wants and the rest of us here are just along for the ride.

Also, since being sick she has gotten into the new habit of waking up to eat at night. Sometimes twice. Normally, my typical children would have never gotten away with this at 17 months old but Lanie is a different story. Anytime she will eat, I will feed her because failure to thrive is one of the scariest things and she still has trouble gaining weight and when she does gain weight it is difficult to keep that weight on her.

Back to my story…

So, I woke up at 6am after having gone to bed at around 12:45 and after being up with Lanie for more than 2 hours in the night and tucking Maggie back in after she had to get up to go potty and I would like to interject here that I love not having to buy pullups anymore.

I think I probably got about 3 1/2 hours of sleep. Normally that is fine and I function alright but it’s been many weeks of bad sleep and yesterday I was mostly sleep walking which was perfect because this was delivered at about 7am.

We needed to put all those squares of grass here:

So I made a bacon and spinach quiche for breakfast and then went on a run and then went out to see this:

And I realized that this was going to take forever.

Good thing the weather was a nice 70 degrees. Perfect for a long day working in the yard.

Until about here.

All of the sudden it was 95 degrees and super humid. All the kids were out working in full force, along with one of the older boy’s friends (Thanks, Danny!).

But these guys just pushed through while I made food and took care of the littles and took pictures of marginal quality.

Maggie really wanted to help so she put on her “work clothes”, which consisted of an oversized pink t-shirt and a long pink skirt.

Laying sod required a lot of wheelbarrowing. Or barreling according to my younger kids.

Some people may have died.

But the transformation was amazing.

We miscalculated and still need two more pallets of but sod even with that section not being completed I am so happy with the yard and I can’t believe we actually have grass!

Next project? Paint the bathrooms. Or maybe edge and put red mulch down in the front garden. Or maybe print some pictures out for the plain white walls throughout my house.

No, finish the table!

Wait, cabinets…

I’m going to have an anxiety attack.

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Lately it’s been all about the dinosaurs.

One of my younger kids’ favorite activities is cutting construction paper with scissors and pasting the pieces together to create dinosaurs.  I don’t know why it’s specifically dinosaurs but it is always dinosaurs.

Yesterday, just after showing me yet another construction paper dinosaur Sam asked where I keep the pins and I said I love your dinosaurs but you are not pinning them all over my walls.

The kids seemed to respect my desire to not have 500 tiny holes in all of my walls. However, unbeknownst to me they had started brainstorming about other ways to hang their dinos.  Since I had earlier vetoed the tape everything to everything idea, they opted to just use paste.

Gabe (16): Mom, are you aware that there are a bunch of dinosaurs glued to the walls and doors all over the house?

Me: What do you mean?

Gabe: I mean that the little kids are making many dinosaurs and gluing them to the walls.

I was rocking a fussy baby at the time and I didn’t get any pictures before I had them remove the quickly drying creations and for that, I am sorely disappointed in myself. I guess you’ll just have to trust me when I say that it was for real a historically accurate portrayal of The Land Before Time up in here.

Today I’ve decided that we’ll be taking a break from cutting paper and gluing all the things so now the kids have turned off all the lights in the house and they are playing some sort of ninja/manhunt game with flashlights and Nerf guns because it’s storming outside. They’ve even roped Gabe into the game and that is helpful because he tends to be good at keeping things from getting too out of control.

I think I’ll just hide out in my room with Lanie while she naps.

It is too quiet though. Not sure if I should be worried or just keep hiding and hope for the best.

Edit: As soon as I hit publish there was a loud eruption of laughing and confused conversation so I think we’re all good here.

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In search of a Spring garden.

I took the little kids to pick out some flowers at our local nursery and let me say that it was so much more expensive than Lowe’s.  I am all for shopping locally but, seriously, it was prohibitively expensive and we’re on a budget around here so I can’t drop $300 for the same thing I can get at Lowe’s for $75. I just can’t.

So we did what we could and I let each kid pick out two small flower pots at the local place and decided we’ll have to head over to Lowe’s to get the rest later.

Jesse only wanted blue flowers and when he found them he was finished.  Lucy could have wandered around the nursery all day long talking to herself about how much she loves all the colors and smells.  Maggie just wanted to reorganize all the pansies and bring home one of everything.

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Just looking at this picture reminds me of how much I spent on some simple flowers and makes me cringe just a little but these three had a lot of fun and you can’t put a pricetag on that, right?
Actually, I can. And I did. And it was ridiculous.

 

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How they do St. Patricks Day in Whoville.

Last year on this day I was in the hospital with Lanie, who was just 2 days old. She had bad jaundice, was not pooping well, had a wonky thyroid, unsettling sugar levels, and a rough echocardiogram.

wpid-wp-1460835101529.jpgThey couldn’t find a vein to redo her IV and had to call in the NICU nurses (again) to help find a vein. I remember nurses wearing cute shamrocks and one had a small one painted on her face. I appreciated her effort but, and I don’t know why, it all made me feel so sad.

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I’ve been thinking back on that day and I realize how far she has come. How far I have come.

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#theluckyfew is darn right.

A few days ago I told the kids that I was going to make them green pancakes for breakfast on St. Patricks Day. Then I woke up this morning and remembered that Gabe has cello lessons on Friday mornings so I promised the kids that I would make the green pancakes for lunch instead and that is what I did.

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Traditionally, I try to remember to buy the kids a box of Lucky Charms for March 17th, which I did, so I topped the pancakes with some syrup and added Lucky Charms marshmallows on top to keep the old tradition going strong and the whole thing turned out to look like something you’d see in a Dr. Suess story.

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The kids thought they were terrific, especially Jesse, who couldn’t stop talking about how amazing it looked and how great the color green was going to taste.

Pancakes with Lucky Charms on top for lunch was delicious, indeed.

I should also note that I went on a run today.

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Josh Sitton football camp take 2.

This past Saturday 4 of our boys were able to attend a free football camp at Catholic High in Pensacola for the second year in a row.  This is a camp where Josh Sitton (Green Bay Packer turned Chicago Bear and how does something like that even happen) comes and helps coach all the kids, giving them pointers, tips, and life encouragement. I don’t know the man personally but he seems like a really good guy who genuinely cares for these boys.

It was sponsored by the Blue Wahoos, our local baseball team because that makes so much sense.
(I couldn’t help the snark but really, we’re so thankful to the Wahoos for caring about their community and our kids!)

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The UWF football team gets involved too and each group of boys has a coach from the Argonauts working with them.

The quarterback was Matthew’s coach.

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Some of these kids were much older than the maximum age for the camp and that was disappointing but Matthew (far left standing up) held his own and did very well.

I don’t know much about Ben’s coach. Not sure what his position on the UWF team is.

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I’m sure when the season starts I’ll become more familiar with these specific players since my kids know them. Ben (Also far left standing up) had a great time and said he did much better than he did at last year’s camp.  He isn’t sure he wants to play football again though. He’s looking hard a tennis which would be so much better for me too because Ben had a bad hip sprain and a concussion (two different instances) last season and my heart can’t take it.

Sam had a great time too but he loves everything and could probably have fun having his teeth pulled. I’m not even kidding.

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He’s far left on the bottom row. I’m so proud of his spirit and love for life.

This was Jesse’s first football camp or football anything really.

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Jesse (left side with coach’s arm around him) was very confused about what was going on but had a smile plastered on his face the whole time.  He made quick friends with another kid and the spent their time rolling around on the ground and pretending to be dinosaurs.  I was 2 parts the mom trying to get his attention so I could tell him stop because there are no dinosaurs in football!, and 2 parts the mom trying to get a video or pictures of the what he was doing.  There were probably people talking about me and that’s too bad because I was completely unsuccessful at both getting his attention and collecting photographic evidence.

In the end, we went home with pictures of their time with Josh Sitton and the UWF football team, a belly full of pizza and Powerade, and pink cheeks because it was 65 degrees and I forgot for a minute that we were in Florida.

ProCamps puts these sports camps together all over the US. Professional athletes like Josh Sitton come out and work with our kids (often for free) and the children have so much fun. Make sure to look into it if you have kids who love sports.

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Still loving Florida

It’s been beautiful outside lately.  We did have a couple of tornado’s roll through last week, one going straight through the parking lot of my oldest daughter’s job, but nobody was hurt and the damage was minimal.
Since that storm the temperature has been hovering right around 70, with it likely pushing 75 this afternoon.  I know a lot of people like winter and cold weather and I get that (not really, that was a lie) but I appreciate warmer winter days so much.  The heat stays off, the windows are open, the kids get outside, and I can get some much needed cleaning done in the house.

Mopping a giant tile floor can be challenging when there are 11 people hovering around.

Here is Jesse planting some flowers in a little glass planter.

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He did a really good job and even cleaned up after himself.

Right now the older kids are off at work or otherwise engaged away from the house, and the younger ones are outside playing some sort of made up baseball-ish game with a plastic ball covered in pennies and blue tape.
I’ve learned not to ask questions.

I’m going to go now to see if I can get something done inside while they play outside.

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It’s high time for a little blog rambling.

A third of us are sick today.  Actually, by tomorrow this cold will have been a week old in our house and we’re still only half way through it.  I can’t really complain though.  Other than the fever that the younger half of kids have gotten it’s been relatively mild.  Last winter somebody in our house was sick every single day but this year we’ve only suffered through two colds.  One more robust cold just before Christmas, and now this one, which is not nearly as severe.

I have learned that turmeric is an amazing cough suppressant, just FYI.  We mix about 1/4 tsp or less turmeric with Celestial Seasonings’ sleepytime sinus tea, honey, and the slightest dash of pepper, and it quells the kids’ coughs for a few hours.  I guess the pepper helps to activate the turmeric or something.
Maggie doesn’t like tea and she’s just now getting the cough so I’m going to try a little warm honey milk with turmeric in it.

I would like to stop and lament about our weather here for a second.  50’s is cold for us Floridians, people.  I may have only lived here for 7 1/2 years but I was raised in Charleston, S.C. where the weather is only a tad cooler.   I was not made to be an Eskimo.
My poor fingers.  My aching toes.
All this global warming and whatnot is failing me.

I have more to say.  So much more than colds and cold weather is going on around here but I feel the need to post pictures with those posts and my older two kids are busy, busy, busy and I never seem to be ready with the camera when they are around.

I’ll make a note in my journal to take pictures.
I started a bullet journal on January 1st and have been consistent with it for 8 days now.  That’s like a record or something, right?

And this boy turns seven tomorrow.

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My sweet, quiet, dinosaur loving Jesse Wayne.

I guess that’s it for today’s rambling.
Until tomorrow…

 

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First thing in the morning…

Jesse kicks behind at Monopoly.

Today is day two of what is looking to become a never ending game of Monopoly.

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He’s only 6 years old but once the boy understands the rules of a game he really gives the older kids a run for their money.  He appears to be exceptionally good at strategy and I’m wondering if he could hold his own at Catan.

I’m not sure who he gets it from but it certainly isn’t me.

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