Saturday, January 29, 2011

Time Away from My Angels

Last Thursday afternoon my parents came to stay at our house for two nights. With our kids. While we were not there. We were downtown Minneapolis at the posh Gra.ves 601 hotel. Drinking champagne and toasting us. Because, for Heavens sake, we haven't been "us" in too long. Last summer we decided that if our marriage could survive three years of IF and the first year with twins, well, we might just deserve a little time away, with each other, to bask in the glow of each other.

So, it all began last summer when I asked my parents if they would be willing to come and hang out with our kids for two nights while we went somewhere. One night is nice, but two nights would allow us to sleep in and lounge around and not be in hurry to check out of a hotel or get back home. We had no plans on where we wanted to go, but just wanted to go someplace. As the winter progressed and we have hit almost record high snowfalls we decided that we didn't want to go too far away and be caught in a blizzard. We decided on Minneapolis which is only 45 minutes from our house, but we don't really go downtown that often. Our planning began.

We arranged to go from Thursday evening thru Saturday morning. That way, my parents would only have to focus on the Little Monkeys during the day while Logan was at kindergarten. We found the Gra.ves 601 hotel with a Star.bucks and a spa next to it. They are also adjacent to the skyways. When we arrived at the Gra.ves 601 we headed up to check out our awesome room and get ready for dinner at The Pot. Yum! We had not been to this restaurant since Logan was a baby! The next morning we went down to the spa to have a couples massage. After that we headed over to the Minn.eapo.lis Convention Center to go to the Boat Show, of all things :) We used to own two different boats and got rid of the boating hobby a couple of years ago as we bought a camper and could find enough time in the summer to use both the camper and the boat. So we just went to look and see what was on the market.

After that we headed back to our hotel to get ready for dinner at's Ch.ris Steakhouse. The best steak I have ever eaten! And their sweet potato casserole was TO DIE FOR. Super good! We woke up Saturday morning regretting that we had not gone to any real night spots, but we were so tired both nights and just wanted to rest up, relax and rejuvenate.

We are hoping that we will have this opportunity, aka that we can convince my parents to take the kids for two nights again, every year. DH and I have been away from the kids individually for longer than two nights at a time, but we have never been away from our kids, including just Logan before the babies were born, for more than one night. It was quite the treat. And walking into the house after being gone for two days we were greeted by two happy smiling babies racing while they crawled towards us and our big boy Logan jumping on us and giving us hugs and kisses. All the while we were away, they were perfect angels and didn't miss a beat, but we sure felt good being greeted by all three when we got home. :) I also received a thank you email from my parents thanking US for letting THEM come and stay with our children and entrusting them with our children for two nights. What a great weekend!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Birthday Celebrations!

Last weekend we celebrated Logan's 6th and Caden and Colton's 1st birthdays! In December Logan has his friend birthday at a local pizza joint where he and 10 friends made their own pizzas. I am not going to post these pics as I don't have permission from his friends parents to post them and I hate to post pics on the internet without permission. We decided to do the family birthday celebration for all three kids together at our house. With Logan's birthday on December 1 and Caden and Colton's birthday on January 6 and the holidays thrown in-between we thought it was a good idea to have one big celebration together. And, we even asked Logan for permission to celebrate his birthday with his brothers to which he was so excited to do.

Here are some pics of our family birthday party!

Colton and Caden

Logan joyfully throwing a big pile of wrapping paper in the air for "confetti"

Family pic

Logan and his cake

Caden and his cake in the face

Caden and his cake in the face

Colton and his cake in the face

Colton and his cake in the face

Caden on his new four wheeler


Although I am bit sad that these Little Monkeys are ONE, I am also glad. The last year has been a lot of work, albeit enjoyable work. Things are getting easier every day and they are growing so fast! We had their one year well-check with the pediatrician last week and here are their stats:

Caden- 7lbs 1oz at birth, now 22lbs 9oz
Colton- 6lbs14oz at birth, now 24lbs

It seems that my 14lbs of baby has grown to almost 47lbs in the past year! My, oh my, where has time gone? In the past year they have gone from 8-12 feedings and diaper changes in a day, to big boys who eat all types of big people food and whole milk in a sippy cup, with only 6 diaper changes/day. They sleep from 7pm-7am without getting up and take two 1.5 hour naps each day. Colton has six teeth and Caden has two teeth. Colton can take six steps alone at a time and Caden, well, he just has no interest in walking on his own, but loves to walk holding onto furniture.

And, they laugh, giggle and talk all of the time. They are such happy babies and are so easy to please. Caden's favorite sound to make is "Mom" and will repeat it over and over to his little hearts content. This is so fitting since he has grown into quite the Mama's boy. Colton has said several clear words such as "kisses", "fishies", "Yeah", "Caden", and "Colton". Logan was speaking clear, three word senteces at 18 months and I think that Colton will surely follow in those footsteps.

They are both really busy and are constantly on the move, giving me a great workout! Since September I have lost 20 pounds and am officially at my wedding day weight. I'd like to lose another 10 pounds, but have fallen off of the weight loss bandwagon with the holidays. I need to get in shape so I can keep up with these Little Monkeys when they are running all over the place! :)

What a great year we have had! I can't wait to see what this coming year brings for all of us as I continue to watch my three boys grow and change. These three little miracles whom I love more than I could ever express in words. How did I get so lucky?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Rough Weekend

On Friday we received a phone call that DHs grandwas was very ill. She has been battling cancer for some time and it seemed to be getting better and her cancer spots were shrinking with new treatment that she started a couple of months ago. We saw her on Christmas Eve and she looked good, although she had just been released from the hospital that day from one of several hospitalizations she had in the past few months. It seems that last week she developed an infection somewhere in her body and her blood cell count was too low to fight the infection. She went from coherent conversations on Friday morning to passing away Saturday afternoon.

DH and I went to the hospital on Friday afternoon to see her and say our goodbyes. She was sleeping when we went there, so DH and I placed our hands on her and I told her that we were there and thank you for being such a good grandma and great-grandma. I told her that we love her and that Logan, Caden and Colton love her. She loved her family fiercly and Logan and her had such a neat bond.

When we got home I explained to Logan that we were not home when he got home from school because we had to go see great grandma at the hospital because she was sick (don't worry, my parents came over to take the kids for us while we went to the hospital). I explained that she had a great life and that she was going to go to Heaven soon to see Jesus. He looked at me, stuck his lower lip out and lowered his head. I asked him what was wrong. He looked up at me with his big blue eyes, lower lip sticking out and said, "I'm going to miss great grandma when she goes to Heaven". Melt my heart! DH and I talked with him and explained in simple terms about living life and death and that great grandma would always be with us and watch over us.

On Sunday we had a fun birthday celebration for all three boys with lots of cake in their face! :) I will post more about this soon, but for today more sadness.

Last night while we were getting the boys ready for bed we heard lots of emergency vehicle sirens. As I went to put Caden to bed I noticed two fire trucks entering our neighborhood. We live in the country and not much happens out here. So, I put Caden down and then I heard more and more sirens and saw too many emergency vehicles to count and then I looked into the distance of the dark, night sky and saw billows of smoke and above the rooptop of another neighbors house I saw huge flames. I instantly got a sick feeling in my stomach. After talking to a couple of neighbors we determined whose house was on fire. When Logan saw it he said, "I bet that great grandma can see all of this. I am so sad, I think I am going to cry. I feel so bad for them, Mom." Ahhh, my little sensitive, caring soul. :)

A fire, no matter where it is, is a huge deal. What made this one unique is that dozens of fire trucks were called in to help put this fire out. You see, we live in an area that does not have fire hydrants because we are not hooked to city water. We all have our own private well water. So the trucks had to go to the two closest hydrants to pump water into the fire trucks so that they could come back and spray the water on the fire. We are about 1.5 miles from the nearest hydrant. And, with the icey cold weather last night the area around the hydrants was freezing and causing a hazard for firefighters. And all of the gawkers that came by it made it more challenging to navigate the area to get the fire under control and eventually put out.

Our neighbors were out to dinner at the local restaurant and were not home at the time. They did have family pets who did not survive the fire. I know that it is sad to lose pets, but am so thankful they were not home at the time. They have three grown children and several grandchildren who live in the area.

Throughout the year my neighboorhood of about 20-25 houses has several get-togethers. I know all of my neighbors and although I am not particularly close to this couple, we feel their loss. The loss of everything is so devastating and to just watch from my window as their house burned down was sickening. I have left messages for two of my neighbors who seem to know what is going on to see what we can do to help this couple.

So, the week that was not looking too busy is beginning to fill up. We have the wake and funeral for DHs grandma on Wednesday and Thursday and hopefully I can do something to help my neighbors this week.

Here's a sneak peak at my next post: CAKE EVERYWHERE!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Big Oh-ONE!

One year ago today my Little Monkeys, aka The Brothers, aka The Little Boys, aka Caden and Colton were born! We started off the day with a banana and a donut of all things! :) Pretty healthy, I know, but Big Brother Logan thought it would be a great way to start their day. When they woke up this morning we went into their room and yelled "Happy Birthday", they both just smiled at us and got all happy. We have been hanging out all day in their jammies and playing. We have been running all around town for the past couple of weeks and all this week so I thought it would be fun for them to have a lounge around the house day. I keep singing the "Happy Birthday" song to them all day today and they smile and giggle every time. They always love when I sing to them (even though I am a horrible singer!), especially when they are having a crabby moment. For some reason my singing calms them down, who'd have thought, right?

We have a couple of birthday festivities planned this week. Yesterday I brought them in to get their one year pics taken (I also had their 3 month, 6 month and 9 month pics taken). Colton was full of smiles, but Caden was so serious yesterday and we couldn't crack a smile out of him. I will be bringing them in again next week to try again. Tonight we are going to go to a local restaurant for dinner and the boys will get an ice cream sundae for dessert on their special day. Tomorrow we have their one year well-check with the pediatrician. On Sunday we are having our family over to celebrate Logan's 6th and Caden and Colton's 1st birthdays.

In the next couple of days I will post more about their birthdays, but for right now, they are waking up from their naps and I need to go sing "Happy Birthday" to them again! :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Goodbye 2010, Hello 2011!

As much as I loved 2010, I am happy for the new year. Happy with the possibility of a fresh start that only the new year can bring. Not that things are bad right now, but the new year brings the freshness like the melting of snow and greening of grass that springtime brings. I have high hopes for 2011. It won't be an easy year, but it will be a fun one. Having two babies that turn ONE in a couple of days (sniff, sniff) and an ever growing six year old will continue to challenge us in a good way. As our three boys continue to change and go through different life phases, we will continue to grow together as a family. We will embark on adventures together that will not only create memories of a lifetime, but will allow us to be together and to continue to create a strong family bond.

So, HELLO 2011! Bring on the fun and excitement!