Time flies… With 3 kids!

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Written a month ago now: just getting to posting pictures!

It sure does!!! I can’t believe so much time has passed since my last post, that Kate is 15 weeks old, that I’ve been back to work for weeks now!  

As usual, so much has happened.  And for whatever reason, Kate’s life, so new and perfect, is the simplest!!!  So let me start with her…  What a good baby.  She must know her place as the third child, as she is so easy!  She doesn’t require my undivided attention; maybe because she gets so much attention from her sisters?  The girl seems to like being on the floor and watching tv.  She just wants to eat, sleep and poop.  She unfortunately has had a cold the majority of her life, given to her by her loving sisters who are constantly in her face, kissing her endlessly.  Poor thing has a cough she just can’t shake and is snotty.  She also snorts with wild abandon if she’s upset.  She has been growing like crazy and has moved past the preemie clothes and is now mostly past the newborn clothes.  It makes me very sad to think that I won’t see all these clothes again as she moves through them, as it’s so fun to see again all the outfits the girls have worn over the years, that I get to dress her in… To be truthful, I don’t even know what she weighs because I haven’t taken her to the Dr the last two times, Matt has!!! (I get a curtailed report!). She is a pretty good eater, and eats about 4 oz every 3-4 hours.  Amazingly, she has slept through the night a few times (sleeping sometimes from 8-5!).  She’s been off that again for a few days, but it was bliss while it lasted.  She has been a good girl for her dad on the few overnight business trips I have had to take.  The most recent milestone has been smiling.  She has a smile that just takes over her whole face.  A very wide smile that is just adorable.  She also has a very strong neck and has been working on her head control.  One random day she was rolling over!  She rolled over for me, Matt, and Steph and the girls!  She seems very strong!  But, she hasn’t done it again since.  Oh well, she’ll get there!  

Next, Charli.  A ball of energy, that one.  She seems to have a strange relationship with school.  She often doesn’t want to go the day before or the morning of as she’s waking up, but always seems to have had fun whenever I pick her up.  She is very social, and is still ‘going to marry’ her friend Gabe.  This love affair has gone on since last year, and he loves her just as much!  Luckily for us, we like his parents!  She has a couple new friends this year, which is always good to see.  She says all the boys are in love with her.  It might or might not be true.  Unfortunately, I think she might care about her relationships more than her studies!  We had another parent-teacher conference, and she has improved since last time, getting most of her capital letters right, most of the numbers from 1-10, she can write her name, knows all of her shapes and colors, and has figured out patterns.  She seems to learn at her own pace, and when she is ready and open to learning, it comes easily to her.  She also seems to have a competitive spirit, and loves to win and hates to lose.  I think she gets this from her parents, with both of us being pretty competitive.  She also does not like to be corrected or to have to learn via practice.  She can get very frustrated when she can’t do something.  She still loves movies, her figurines and dolls, and has a vivid and amusing imagination with them.  I absolutely love watching her play and the creativity that is present in her mind and watching and hearing how she perceives the world.  She also seems to love scary things and is unfazed by things she will catch on TV at times.  She also loves to tell totally random, made up stories.  These often involve ‘her Grandma,’ and they are totally crazy regrading something her grandma did or liked or did with her.  I don’t know what that’s about!  I have just enrolled her in an Irish Dance class, and I’ve signed her up for swimming lessons again.  I think she’s already dreading those, but really liked her first dance class!  She is on spring break this week.  Unfortunately, last night she had an accident while I was away on a business trip, which landed her in the emergency room.  Matt isn’t entirely sure how it happened, but the end result was that she nailed the corner of the table with her nose.  Split her open at the bottom of her nostril.  Matt reported LOTS of blood.  This absolutely broke my heart not being there for her.  I got a worried/stressed call from Matt while I was at a baseball game in Philadelphia!  So glad I even heard the phone!  She was terrified.  Not to put words in his mouth, but I think he was a little terrified.  Luckily Steph was able to come over and cover for my absence by watching the younger girls, while Matt took her to the hospital.  She was seen by a couple doctors and a plastic surgeon to make sure the cut wasn’t going to affect her smile and the nerves that control her smile.  She got glued back together and we’re hoping it won’t scar too badly.  Major Mom guilt last night.  My boss tried to reassure me that everything was fine, and that these things will happen while I’m away, and this won’t be the first or last time this will happen.  But this is the first time that something bad has happened to one of my babies, and I couldn’t be there for her.  I hope she knows I was thinking about her all night and was beside myself with worry.  All I wanted to do was hug her and take the pain away!  😦

Considering when I started this post that I was saving Ellie for last because she had the most news, I’m wondering how long this post is going to get!  So Ellie.  She is making so many strides and her personality is coming into focus, it’s fascinating.  She seems to have a complicated relationship with Charli.  She copies Charli’s every move, yet they drive each other crazy.  Charli is usually the instigator, and I’ve watched her taunt Ellie a lot.  She will taunt her with everything from what she has for dinner, to taking something from her, to racing her somewhere and she knows she will win the list goes on and on.  It is maddening.  But then they play together so well sometimes and Ellie mimics her words, the way she plays, when she is running, everything.  It’s kind of fascinating to watch.  Best of friends and worst enemies at the same time. People have told me there is a better word for it:  siblings.  It makes me wonder.  Her vocabulary is amazing.  Matt says she’s a chatterbox.  She speaks in complete sentences, is fairly clear in her speech, and you can watch her watch you say words and then try them out herself.  She seems very smart.  She has a curious way about her, and will ask about numbers and letters and what they are.  She loves books, and has recently started to want to know what the pages actually say.  She has even memorized parts to books and knows what it says on certain pages.  Her current favorite is a Fancy Nancy book called Bumpy Bus.  Since my last post, I wanted to report on her physical therapy and the meeting with the physiatrist.  First, she is getting stronger and faster all the time.  Dr. Gaebler considers her case mild, but did see the same issues that the physical therapist did.  Her first order of business was to order Ellie some orthotics for her feet.  The fitting for them consisted of them casting her legs for a good fit.  She got to pick the design on the plastic ‘boot’ and what the Velcro strap had on it.  She initially chose Scooby Doo and horses for the strap.  When she went in for the first fitting, they messed up the sizing and Matt had them change the Scooby Doo part to hearts (he is not a Scooby Doo fan).  They fit on her second fitting and the orders are to wear the boots at night.  The purpose is to keep her foot in a flexed position to basically stretch her all night.  It helps to keep her calf stretched.  Her calves being tight leads to her walking on her toes, especially when she starts moving fast.  The inner ‘boot’ which fits inside the taller boot is deigned to keep her ankles from collapsing inward, which in turn causes her knees to turn inward.  She is supposed to wear those almost all the time.  We are trying to make the boots ‘fun’ so she wants to wear them.  It kinda works.  The first night she wore them to bed she was begging me to take them off her, saying ‘they hurt me, mama,’ which of course broke my heart.  I stayed the course, but it was hard.  We have worn them a few times now, all night.  I imagine that this will just be routine at some point, but we’re not there yet.  It makes me a little sad seeing her in her little boots.  I know it’s what’s best for her, but it’s hard seeing her struggle with them and them looking so ‘medical’.  But overall she is good and had no idea that anything could be standing in her way!

The activities of the family have been many.  Matt went to AZ for a few days in February and a managed to successfully sell his mother’s house.  He keeps his eyes out for properties for us in the country, which is where he wants to live eventually (tomorrow if it were up to him!).  Tomorrow there is an auction for 40 acres that he’d like to bid on, but obvious we have our limits on price.  It’s always interesting.  While Matt went to AZ, I whisked the girls off to IN for a couple days.  We saw quite a bit of my parents in February and March, due to a bunch of events: Matt’s 40th birthday, Jarah’s 3rd birthday, the For the Love of Chocolate event and Easter.  We also have been to a few birthday parties, a Northwestern/Indiana basketball game (with all 3 kids!), celebrated St. Patrick’s Day, and a few other get together so put on by our friends.  

As a side note, life with 3 kids vs 2 hasn’t really changed us that much.  There is more to do:  more diapers and dirty clothes, sometimes you have to make someone wait while you’re dealing with another, another person to share mom with…  I think it’s even harder to get out of the door and I’ve had to remember infant time, i.e. sometimes they poop and are hungry at very inconvenient times!  I would say the worst thing is getting home late once they were all sleeping in that.  We’ve done that a few times and they all were crying and it’s very hairy when that happens.  

As usual, I’ve attached some pictures, hope you enjoy!  

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