Our Family

Our Family
"These are the children God has graciously given to me. (us)" - Genesis 33:5

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Born To Climb

At least that is what his shirt says. I also noticed that the sign above him reads:
Everything Grows With Love

He just started doing this a couple of weeks ago...and now scales any of the doorways in our house. He can even get to the chin bar we have in one of the door ways, which is something we have used to help him improve his upper body muscle tone. Do you think it's worked?? :0)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Loophole

It never ceases to amaze me how children can find a loophole in ANY direction we can give them. Somehow, Ethan has become quite excellent at managing the "fine print" of the directions we give him.

For instance...

Lately, he's been feeling a little left out when it comes to sleeping in our bed. Joshua has been doing much better with sleeping elsewhere...namely with his brother in the twin bed. So, when Josh does wake up in the middle of the night to crawl into bed with us, it seems to wake Ethan up. (you know, the boy who can sleep through any thunderstorm or our house alarm going off!)

Naturally, Ethan decides that it must be far better to sleep in bed with mommy, daddy, and Josh than by himself in his own bed. Mind you we wouldn't have a problem with it, if the kid could SLEEP!! When Ethan comes into bed, it doesn't matter the time, he won't stop talking, can't quite get comfortable...and did I mention he doesn't travel lightly. Oh no...blanky, "norma" blanky, kitty, froggy and usually some sort of truck, train, or tractor. Did I also mention we have a queen size bed, I'm 24 lbs. heavier, (and rounder) than normal, and between me and my husband we have around 6 pillows in the bed?? :)

Yes. Over the weekend we converted Ethan's bedroom into a mini "dorm" room as it now has three twin beds in it. (We can't do bunk beds due to our cape style house having the sloping ceilings) So, I told Ethan that he now has two other beds in his room to choose from should he find his less than satisfactory during the night. I told him that he wasn't allowed to crawl into our bed in the middle of the night anymore, and that he could find more suitable sleeping arrangements somewhere else.

The loophole?? I never said he couldn't sleep under our bed. That's right. I discovered Ethan sleeping, with all of his many things, under our bed this morning. When I asked him what he was doing under there, he simply said, "well I was tired and your glider over there just wasn't comfortable anymore"!

Monday, June 09, 2008

When You Can't Beat The Heat...

...eat some ice cream. Well, we used to do this quite a bit more often...before we gave up dairy for the boys. Needless to say "ice cream sundae suppers" have been limited since last summer and the subtraction of dairy from the diet this past winter. We have been on a quest to find the "right" fit for our family as it not only has to be dairy free, but gluten free as well. Most of the soy ice creams have been a bust...both with the kids and myself.

I am an ice cream lover in the summer. I could eat it for just about any meal when it hits the high 80's and 90's as it has these past few days. However, downing a big old bowl of Edy's Slow-Churned in front of my kiddos just isn't fair to them. (Yes, I know I could eat it after they go to bed...but they know how to open the freezer and can recognize the container...just not a battle I want) Plus, I've noticed since cutting most of the dairy out of my diet, (except my recent addiction to Klondike Bars...thanks to the twins!) my asthma with regards to mucous in my lungs hasn't been bad at all! (ya, ya gross!)

I think we've found a winner though. It is made by a company called Turtle Mountain. They have a few product lines that you may be familiar with...So Delicious, and Purely Decadent. They recently came out with a new version of their Purely Decadent line of ice cream that is not only dairy free, but gluten free, AND soy free! And the taste is exceptional. It's called Purely Decadent with Coconut Milk!

Let me show you what Rebekah and Josh thought of it last night...

We tried the chocolate and the vanilla bean...these two LOVED the chocolate. But they also have coconut, mint choc. chip, and cookie dough...all gluten free!! Yeah! As for Ethan...he has a tough time eating extremely cold things, but I don't think he liked the choc. flavor. We'll let him try the vanilla one tonight...but if I can find the mint choc. chip, I know he'll be alright as that is his most favorite ice cream flavor ever!! :)

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Name Game

Mike here, I know a rare appearance I know, and I am using capitals (see Cheryl I can use the shift key :) ).

Anyhow Michelle and I have been tossing around names for the boys. We agreed to not use cutsie names so we started to brainstorm. As many of you know name just one can be hard never mind two.

So here is a short list of names that Michelle has axed so far.

Calvin and Hobbes
Romulus and Remus
Pinky and Floyd
Obiwan and Kenobi
Bruce and Wayne
David and Goliath
CJ and TJ (it's a jeep thing)
Smith and Wesson
John and Deere (Ethan's idea not mine)
and last but not rejected names Dunkin and Donuts

I am still pulling for Calvin and Hobbes.


Monday, June 02, 2008

We've Been Converted

As any one expecting twins finds out...a lot of changes must be made in order to prepare for their arrival. If they are you first kiddos, then you basically need double of everything. If they are your 4th and 5th kiddos, then you may just need to borrow an extra of some things. Thankfully we know a number of people who have very young children and have begun to offer up items like bouncy chairs, swings, pack and play's, etc.

The one thing we didn't realize until we really tried to do it, was how much carseat space we were going to need. We've been driving a Dodge Grand Caravan for a year and a half, and it has been a wonderful vehicle for us as a family. Especially with the Stow n' Go seating, we've been able to have the space necessary to go and do just about anything. However, for those of you who are still in the carseat phase of children, you know just how big those darn things are. We spent over two hours at a dealership trying to find a vehicle that would allow us to get 5 carseats in, and still have room for a stroller, diaper bags, and...um...us! No luck.

Mike tried for another hour and a half, one night last week, to again try different combinations of carseats together. We measured, looked on line for carseats that might be smaller...everything...nothing worked. So, we left it in God's hands...and thanks to the very powerful prayers from my bible study gals...He heard them.

About a week after the carseat fiasco at Bonneville and Son, we got a phone call. A 2000 Dodge Ram 1500 Conversion Van had just been traded in, and our sale consultant Dan Reitz, (whom I HIGHLY recommend) snagged it so we could be the first to look at it. Now, I had no idea what a conversion van is, much less driven one. All I could picture was The Mystery Machine from Scooby Doo...well that plus a van that had been on That 70's Show a few times...you know shag carpet, mustard yellow with beige trim and maybe a disco ball...

I didn't know what to think when Dan drove this on to the lot for us to see. My heart skipped a beat as I immediately judged it, saying to myself..."well, it doesn't look as bad as I thought it was going to...maybe this is what we've been waiting for.

The gentleman who traded this in took meticulous care of this vehicle. Bonneville hadn't done anything to it...and it was spotless. It only has 60,000 miles on it, and although Dodge no longer makes these land yachts, were able to tell us quite a bit about this vehicle. First of all a conversion van is designed to fit the buyer. So, the old buyer had it outfitted with a $25,000 conversion package which included a remote starter, indirect lighting, a 17" TV with VCR, two skylights...and many more options that we are still discovering.

Needless to say, Bonneville not only let us walk away from our lease on the minivan...but gave us an unbelievable deal on this mobile living room. Our payments are still where they were before hand, and although we have to avoid parking garages, and most drive-thrus, it is now our new VANOKDS. Before we signed the papers for it, we asked Ethan what he thought about us trading in the minivan for the conversion van. His response..."can we watch the TV??" Ah yes, the TV...don't worry...he still gave the other van a kiss and a hug goodbye right on the hood.