Friday, October 29, 2010

Little Beefers--Yup, that's what we call her

I just can't get enough of her!

Right before the birth of each of my children, I have had a mini-meltdown. I have worried and fretted about whether I would be able to love yet another child the way I love the ones I already have. I would cry to Matthew about how much I loved my current children and what if I didn't love the new one...Matthew, having learned my pattern, would just hug me and remind me (while slightly laughing and making fun of me) that I found a way to love the other three. And it's true--my love continues to multiply, not divide, and I now find myself totally in love with the beefy, cuddly, double-chinny mess of pinch-able chub pictured above. She has been such a joy to our family. She has helped calm Aidan's behavior, she has brought out such a natural maternal side to Emma (so cute to watch them together) and Parker spends all day kissing the top of her head and saying "cute baby." And of course, being a girl, she has Daddy completely wrapped around her finger. No matter how horrible of a day I am having, watching Matthew hold Olivia, kiss her, squish her, or make her laugh just softens whatever hardness is in me. Children really are a blessing and a joy. I get so bogged down with the "dirty" side of mothering. Being the cook, and the maid, and the disciplinarian, and the teacher, an the enforcer, that I often forget to just be mom. The one who laughs with them instead of doing a load of laundry. Or reading a pile of books and letting bath time be a half an hour later. I have found that the days I let life happen instead of planning every single moment out, are the days I actually feel like a good mother--instead of someone fulfilling a job requirement. And when I look at that little face pictured above, I am reminded to let go more and relish these moments with my kids.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Little Brothers

A typical day at the Carpenter house--Emma trying to draw, and Parker practically on top of her, as she's trying to draw. I must have offered 100 times to give him his own paper to color on, but he kept saying no. Apparently, what he really wanted was to bug his sister. Mission accomplished!

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I've had first loves, failed loves, and unrequited loves. But nothing compares to true love.
Happy Anniversary Matthew!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Apple Annie's

Last week we went to pick apples and pumpkins with some of our extended family. The kids had such a good time, especially picking apples. Aidan was so excited about using the apple picker. Unfortunately, we didn't get any pictures in the pumpkin patch because a tire on our double stroller had a blow out, and we were too busy trying to keep track of our kids to take pictures. Oh well, maybe next year... I had planned on attempting a pie with the apples we picked, but my kids ate them all before I could--secretly, I was really happy about that, since baking is not really my forte. Not pies, anyway. I am 33 and have never baked a pie in my life--not unless you count pre-heating the oven and popping in a frozen Marie Calendar's or Sara Lee! Any time I go anywhere with all four of our kids, I tend to get a little frazzled and overwhelmed, which leads to impatient and cranky. This outing was no exception, but at least Matthew took the day off of work to spend with us and help me. And, at least the kids had a good time and we were able to get some good pictures and delicious apples. Next week for FHE will will decorate our pumpkins and put them on display. That I am excited for!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Asleep on the job!

We have recently done away with naps for the three older Carpenter children. I did this in an attempt to get the kids in bed and asleep before 10 pm. Especially Parker, who because of his heightened gag reflex, is unable to be left crying in his crib to fall asleep on his own. When we have attempted that technique in the past, it has ended with him throwing up everywhere, and Matthew and I even more frustrated than before. So, that has meant that he is out and about in the family room, in our room, in the office area, and sneaking into Aidan and Emma's rooms reeking all kinds of bedtime havoc on everyone. Aidan and Emma have also had a very hard time staying in bed once put down. So, for the last few weeks, I have cut nap time out of our routine. It has made the hours of 3-5pm almost unbearable, but it has also resulted in our kids being in bed and asleep by 7:30 or 8:00 o'clock every night of the week. It unfortunately, has also resulted in Parker falling asleep at the dinner table on more than one occasion. But, I have learned to pick my battles, and choose the lesser of the two evils. And, I wind up actually getting some sleep of my own, time with my husband, and some laundry done here and there. All and all, it's been worth it...most days :)

Friday, October 8, 2010

Making Friends

With how warm it has still been during the day, we've been spending a lot time outside swimming and playing. Recently, Aidan has taken on a new hobby--catching lizards. I wasn't too thrilled about it at first, since in the beginning when he attempted to catch one, he would smear it all over the back wall. Gross! But, with practice and a little advice from Dad, he's gotten really good at tracking them, catching them, playing with them for a bit, and then putting them in the garden when's done. Here he is showing off his latest catch.

Showing the love!

I love this picture. He was so proud of himself. And would you believe that lizard hung out on his hand, and then shoulder for quite sometime after he was caught! Matthew has dubbed him the lizard whisperer...and that's fine, as long as it stays lizards doesn't become a snake thing!