We have two large trees in the front yard - one no longer has leaves therefore my yard is covered. But who doesn't love raking leaves into piles so the kids can jump in? Fortunately Kirk does at least 6 times :)
At least the leaves made for some afternoon fun and a few good pictures!
The second tree has yet to lose its leaves which means more fun another day :)
Today is my mom's birthday! If I wasn't over 30 I'd never guess that she was :) She looks fabulous and is an awesome mom. I love you mom and I hope you have a wonderful day, a great year and many, many more birthdays to come.
We've done a few home parties but today was the first time the girls got invited out to a party at a location. The party was for their friends and not big sister or big sisters. They were big kids! At one point today I was telling Julianna she was a big girl and tonight she said to daddy, "I'm a big girl, mommy said so!"
Yes mommy did :)
The party was at a big bounce house and the girls were thrilled to climb the moonbounces and slide down.
Alyssa loved everything and went everywhere alone. Julianna stuck closer to me but was still willing to go alone. Rachel, as usual, stuck to me more and despite the fact that she climbed the bookshelf in her room the other night she was not willing to go on the larger moonbounces by herself. Yikes, even 24 pounds is heavy when it's hung around your neck as you climb!!
Partners in crime...
Miss Independent (Alyssa):
Julianna having fun.
Then onto the party room for pizza, juice and cake.
The birthday girls: Mikayla and Savanna.
My girls just wanted to go straight for the cake. Well, after they drank some juice :)
And who could blame them? The cake was gorgeous! And delicious :)
Alyssa agrees. The little cakes were for Mikayla and Savanna. Alyssa tried to help them blow out the candles from across the room. Cracked me up - I could hear her blowing over everybody!
All 5 princesses sitting on, well, fighting over, the throne.
We lost Mikayla! But now Alyssa decided she needed to be seen in the picture - look at that crazy grin :)
The girls had a great time and LOVED their goody bags. Of course they were willing to line up for a picture but I couldn't get all three of them to smile or even look at me at the same time! Little stinkers.
Happy 3rd birthday Mikayla and Savanna! We had a great time and the girls were thrilled to be at their first friend birthday party :) Now they are counting down the days till their birthday. Of course I won't let them forget that Caleb's birthday comes first. That and Grandma's next week. This time of year is busy for us! Doesn't matter - I still love fall :)
The girls first picture with "Best Friend Lauren". The girls didn't get much of a chance to grow up together and be real best friends but in my heart they always will be even if they will grow up hundreds of miles apart. Thanks for all the playdates - we're coming for a few in SC!
Lauren (Grace and Alyssa) - we'll miss you guys too! You will always be my nieces. Love you all :)
I don't even know where to begin. Joanna and I have been friends for a long time and very close friends for the past 4 years. We were on the phone while she was in labor with her oldest child. Then she ended up having her daughter on Caleb's 1st birthday.
We were meant to be close friends :)
When I got pregnant with the triplets Joanna coordinated everything - made sure I had child care for Kaitlyn and Caleb lined up, meals after the girls were born, baby help when they came home even though she was pregnant with her second child (also know as "best friend Lauren").
We've shared everything for years - our kids were supposed to grow up together - her oldest was going to marry Caleb :) Well, that's in my plan but we'll see how that goes.
And now she's moving away - at least it's not another country but far enough that she won't be down the street when I need her. She won't be here for play dates or long hour chats or girls night out. Sure, there are phones and computers but it's not the same.
I so very much hate to say goodbye....
Joanna - you are like a sister to me and I am sad that you are going to be so far away. Just know that I will miss you but I will not forget you and I will see whenever I can! Love you girl!
(In the picture: me, Joanna, Kristy - we had pictures done on our last girls night out)
It's extremely hard to believe that 3 years ago today I had just been admitted to the hospital for the remainder of my triplet pregnancy. I would have to say that was the beginning of some of the hardest weeks in my life.
This is me shortly before I went in. Wow, I barely remember being that big! And to think I got even bigger - crazy!
And a picture from the "inside" - look how little Kaitlyn and Caleb were!
Three years later I still remember my six week stay - I still remember how hard it was to be in there but then I look at my three little girls - girls I didn't know at all at that point - and I can see that every second was worth it. Carrying them as far as I did ensured their health which I am still grateful for today. Sometimes the hardest things in our lives turn into beautiful blessings!
Today was Kaitlyn and Caleb's first school field trip. I actually like school field trips. I mean it's a cool place that I get to go to that I'm sure I wouldn't otherwise go to. And believe first on my list was NOT the Frontier Culture Museum (how's that for a name?!) but I was pleasantly surprised that we all actually had fun!
The three amigos on the way - look how awake they are for leaving at 7 in the morning! None of them were this awake when we left :) Neither was I!!
The basic idea of the "museum" was that the kids can go from farm to farm from different countries all from about 300 years ago. All the foriegn houses were transported from their given countries are were actually built 300 years ago. So cool!
First up, the German farm.
Each farm (house) had a guide dressed up in period dress to teach the kids about how people would live in that time period. No, he isn't playing with a knife (scary right?!) - he's telling us how his knife was a tool and not a weapon as serf's were not allowed to have weapons.
The other thing the museum does is have the kids practice some of the chores in each of the house - in this house they each got a turn to sweep :) They look so happy doing it - I think I know what their new chore at home is!
Inside the very tiny German house that would have very little heat in the winter and at least 3 generations would live together inside of it - and I thought my house was cramped!!
After Germany we headed to Ireland - first the blacksmith that we watched make nails - very cool - and then to a small Irish house - again I'm so glad I wasn't alive then! Besides the small houses there were no bathrooms - yikes!
Inside were two rooms - one with the fireplace where the parents slept and one where the kids would sleep with the weaving loom.
Outside the kids practiced more chores like learning the process of turning flax into linen - or at least getting the flax to the point where it's ready to be spun.
The kids used the threshing machine to break the flax:
Then they beat the flax - called scutching:
Lastly the flax needs to be heckled:
The kids all seemed thrilled to be part of the process. Of course none of them have to do this for hours every day!
After Ireland we moved on to England which I thought was the nicest house of the ones we saw.
We were brought into the kitchen and shown how the women would have cooked a meal for the entire family. Seemed like a huge chore! I guess I don't have it so bad :) The food is really cooking on the pot behind her - apparantly the staff eat in "England" all the time.
This is the only house we were allowed to go upstairs in (though Ireland had no upstairs) - and we had to go up through a very narrow staircase - no gaining weight there!
The kids in the upstairs master bedroom.
I'm sure the water bottle isn't period authentic but since I don't yet know how to remove it in Photoshop (yes, Kirk is going to teach me - yea!) you're stuck with it.
While the English house was my favorite the kids found the African houses the most fun. Why? Basically because the houses aren't built yet and everyone got to pitch in and help build the house! No kidding!
The teachers wouldn't let them get in and stomp around in the clay (hmmm, wonder why?) but the kids helped by rolling the clay and setting it on a tarp.
They seem so proud of their mess!
Each kid got to throw one of the bricks they rolled onto the wall. Now they can say that they had a hand in building a house!
The end result will look something like this:
All in all we had a great day, learned a lot and wore ourselves out! Looking forward to the next field trip but hoping it isn't too soon :)