our pad

our pad

Friday, November 13, 2015

Halloween Fun

We had a great Halloween in our new neighborhood. There was a pizza pre-party with neighbors, a big pack of kids trick-or-treating, and lots of lots of candy, enough to satisfy even the most pregnant of bellies! Jameson went off with friends as did Cameron (unchaperoned for the first time). Still laughing thinking about Cam dropping his loot, all 50lbs of candy, on the ground when he got home as he began recounting his night for me, in all its glory, "Don't get me wrong mom, it wasn't easy. There were many times over the course of the night where we thought about turning back. We thought about giving in. But then we decided to just focus on the end result and we pushed on. We refueled when we needed to, asked for water at a few houses when we couldn't stand the thirst anymore but we did it, we did it." Love that grit and determination and how it sounded like he was telling the story of a  courageous battle to win a war and not just a quest to fill up his bag with candy.
Cam went as a spy, Jameson dressed as Doc from Back to the Future, Avery and Ella both went as fashionable and brightly colored witches, and Addie went as a Pop Star who only answered to the name "Lady Goo Goo."

Jim and I were invited to a friend's Halloween party (Adults only), and since we had prize worthy costumes last year, knew this year's must be pretty creative too. I decided to work the pregnancy into the costume and made myself into a can of "Prego" Tomato Sauce. Jim, was the Italian chef, of course. I wore red tights and a red long sleeve shirt. I peeled a label off a jar of Prego, brought it to Staples where it was enlarged and printed on poster-board. I used tape to secure around me in the back and held up with red suspenders. Viola! We got Jim an apron and a chef hat then used yellow yarn for spaghetti, and styrofoam balls which painted brown for meatballs. We hot glued these onto his apron and hat to jazz up a bit. Such fun!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Comeback

I'm back at it, dusting off the old keyboard and updating the blog for the first time in about 8 months. So much has happened in that time, I don't even know where to start.  Crazy changes, exciting changes, and if you asked me as I closed out my last post, I never would have predicted how much our lives would have changed in such a short period of time. For starters, we moved to a new, albeit, neighboring town this summer, and into an awesome new house in a great new neighborhood. All five kids started at brand new schools this fall. I cut back at work and am no longer going into the office, only working freelance from home, pretty limited hours, but still teaching ballet one day a week. But the biggest change and definitely most exciting is that the Lily Pad is growing. I'm pregnant and expecting baby number 6, on New Year's Day! We are all beyond excited for the new little blessing to join our family. After my two year check-up with my oncologist yesterday, I am reminded just what a sweet miracle this is, how far we have come, and how fortunate I am to have this new lease on life and new life growing inside me.  Walking around the hospital today, moving from waiting room to waiting room, from blood work in the laboratory up to the all too familiar blood cancer floor, where I got reassuring news from my doctor, was just so surreal and emotional.  All the anxiety and worry and fear from the six months I spent there came flooding back. This was met with appreciation for the doctors and nurses that treated me and continue to help patients facing ups and downs everyday. My heart ached for all those people in the waiting room who were just starting their treatment and facing so many unknowns. I felt guilt for those who looked at my belly wondering if they would ever get the chance to start their families. I wondered when, if ever, these visits would get easier and what exactly it all means. All this turned to thankfulness for all that has brought me to where to I am today, almost 34 weeks pregnant with my sixth child, wife to my amazing husband, surrounded by friendship, family and most of all hopefulness for what is to come.    

Monday, March 16, 2015

Mini Monets

Ella, family sketch, age 6

Here is some recent work from my little artists. If I preserve it on the blog, I am then free to remove it from the fridge and quietly move it to the recycling bin, right? These girls are very prolific colorers...

Avery, gearing up for St. Patrick's Day,Age 6

Avery, always fashionable, and accessorizing with a rainbow kitty
Avery, who forgot to write, "I liked to build a snowman in the winter, like the first time it snowed a foot, but then not so much when the snow got to be 8 feet high."
Ella, hopefully some lamb days commin' soon
Addie, we'll say...experimenting with colors
And how could I forget my sweet, "Abbie's" school work:

Great work Abbie, now if we could spend less time coloring and more time working on your letters...

Friday, March 6, 2015

Well Hello Again...

I realize it has been over a year since I last posted. I needed to take some time off, share a little less, grow a little more, but recently I've been wanting a creative outlet for all my thoughts and ideas. I gave up Facebook for Lent- so here I am. Life has mostly returned to normal if any such thing actually ever existed with seven people under one roof , but I try. I am now working in the corporate world three days a week and back to teaching ballet one afternoon a week. We are crazy busy, but busy is good. We just got back from a great trip to Florida and managed to escape for a week, what promises to be the snowiest winter in history.  We visited with Nanny and Papa in Jupiter, beached and pooled it, then headed up to Disney for a couple days just in time for the first frost Florida has seen all season long. The frigid temps (by souther standards) scared the crowds away from the park the day we visited Animal Kingdom so there were hardly any lines and the kids thought it was the best day we ever spent together as a family. Magic Kingdom the next day was pretty magical too and I hope they all remember this trip for a long time.

Now we are back to the snow- lots of it, and back to grind, but trying to have some fun along the way. So on to what you’ve all been waiting for: The Updates on the kids.

Addie: My little whippersnapper is just as cute and cuddly as ever but boy is she a firecracker. She can be difficult as all get up and knows all my buttons to push although she is a complete mommy’s girl. Lots of transitions for this peanut this year with a move, a new school and full day Pre-K,  and she is not a fan of change so no wonder she has taken to acting out a bit. But she is just the funniest, most affectionate little thing so I can’t hold it against her. She’s taking ballet at the studio where I teach and grew up dancing so seeing her in her ballet leotard melts my heart. She has learned so much in school this year; is sounding out letters, writing numbers up to 100 and is just crazy about her teacher. She loves to play “school” and can still be found talking to herself out in her own imaginary world. She is always playing or trying to play with her big sisters and when they aren’t fighting they get along great-ha! She is smart smart and sassy but can’t pronounce either of those words because of the cutest little lisp you’ve ever heard. Although she will be 5 this spring she is definitely the baby of the family.

Avery: This has been a big year for Avery, in kindergarten and learning by leaps and bounds. She is reading and writing and brings home so much beautiful artwork everyday which reads- From: Avery To: Mom. She has become Miss Independent, as I split her and Ella into separate classes and I think its been good for everyone. She has made some very sweet friends and its nice for each of the girls, as identical twins,  to have their own identity.  Avery is also enjoying dancing and even auditioned and got a part as a mouse in a professional Nutcracker. Both girls did amazing and I was oh so proud.  She is still a girlie-girl and loves fashion and dressing up and make-up. Although she can have a mind of her own at times and is the most vocal of all my kids when things don’t go her way, she is a good listener and a sweetheart. She enjoyed skiing a couple times this winter and is pretty good about trying new things. She is generally willing to compromise and I for one appreciate that in a kid...

Ella: My girl is acing kindergarten, is reading and writing and follows directions and remembers everything. She's got some self confidence and the attitude to go along with it. She knows what she wants and is not the least bit timid in going after it. She has a very tight group of friends,  yet her twin is still her BFF.  Ballet and gymnastics come pretty easily to her so of course it drives me crazy when she says she doesn't want to go to these activities anymore- she can be oh so stubborn! She still loves animals of all sizes and varieties- I think she'll be a vet when she grows up- she has such a big heart.   

Cameron- Cameron is in fifth grade and enjoying switching classes for the first time. I can’t believe my littles boy is almost done with Elementary School. Despite 3 feet of snow on the ground he is gearing up for baseball season and had his first practice last week. He did  swim team this winter and got skiing a few times, just not quite as much as he would have liked. He is proving he is a responsible eleven year old through pet ownership. Santa brought him a guinea pig this christmas and I have been happy with how well he cares for it. He was a Lost Boy in his school play of Peter Pan and has really enjoyed some great after-school clubs. Now we are to the science fair and he loves this kind if thing, me- not so much!

Jameson- My first baby is almost done with middle school. He has had a very busy winter, in addition to playing hockey and on two basketball teams he is applying to high schools which is a very time consuming process for kids an parents alike. So far he has gotten into to both schools he applied to and received prestigious academic scholarships to both- it will be hard to choose. We are so proud of this kid’s accomplishments and can’t wait to see what is in store next. While still sweet and innocent and by far the easiest going kid around, I'm starting too see glimpses of a teenager- texting with friends, shaving that horrible fuzz above the lip, and tuning me out in favor of his phone-he is clearly growing up! This does come with it's perks, however, and with some small kids at home I am reaping the benefits- I have a built in babysitter. I can run an errand here, drive a kid there and not have to load everyone into the car. On the weekends Jim and I can put the girls to bed early then J and Cam watch a movie while we sneak out for dinner. He is more than responsible, has his phone close by and is First- Aid trained . Did I mention he saved Addie's life on a Christmas Eve when she choked on a necklace locket? Although adults were home at the time, he sprang into action and did the Heimlich Manuever until she finally threw up the silver star. Thankful for this kid!!