Always Crazy, Always Fun, Always Love

Ray Romano once compared life with twins to living in a frat house. As he put it, "no one sleeps, there is a lot of noise and a lot of throwing up." I find this very true with 4 young children, including twins. However, though things are always crazy, we always try to have fun and, most certainly, always love each other.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Should I Be Mad Or Proud?

Ellen wrote her whole name for the first time- completely on her own!!

The problem?

She wrote it on Kenny's school project....

You can clearly see her capital E, two small l's a small e, an attempt at an n and then a better n!

This is a blank pizza box. Kenny received this from his teacher to do a history project on. He was doing a report on the Wyandot native Americans and each side of the box had different requirements- with the inside bottom needing "pizza slices" with different facts about the Wyandot on each one.

Luckily though- some well placed construction paper covered her work, so I think I decided to be proud of her accomplishment!

Speaking of school projects- those I speak to often know how overwhelmed I have been. I never imagined being overwhelmed by my KIDS school work. Their school gives them a lot of projects to do- which I understand is way better academically then a worksheet- but they had several due at once. This was their schedule last week:

Both boys- had the "invention convention" project due last Wednesday. This is similar to a science fair project, but they had to invent something- come up with an idea of a problem to solve and come up with an invention to solve it. They had to either make the invention or a model of it as well as do patent research and more. Here was their ideas:

Kenny- wanted to solve the problem of houses getting destroyed by tornadoes and floods. So, he invented a metal box of sorts that is installed underground around your house. When a storm is coming, you can press a button inside your house and the box comes up and covers your house. Pushing the button again lowers it back underground.

Jacob- wanted to solve the problem of not wanting to do chores, so he invented a chore-doing robot. It has a washer/dryer as a belly to wash your clothes and bendable arms. It has a pencil for doing your homework and a trash bag to put trash in.

Kenny- had to do the above described pizza box project due last Friday. Thankfully due to these projects both going on at the same time, he did not have much other homework- just the occasional math page.

Jacob- had to do a report on dinosaurs also due Friday- he chose to study the T-Rex. He had to do a POWER POINT PRESENTATION (he is in second grade) to present his information on the T-Rex. It had to be stored on a Flash Drive. And he had to do a diorama to represent a dinosaur scene of his choice. He also had his usual homework including spelling words, reading, math flash cards, and mini-math projects.

Then, before all that was over, Jacob brought home information for a new project starting this week- for Black History month, he has to research a famous black Ohioan (I think we are doing Archie Griffin) and they will be doing a "Wax Museum" style presentation.

Anyone else exhausted after reading this? I thought I would pull my hair out last week. I am stuck between gratitude that the teachers are challenging them and not just putting worksheets under their nose and frustration at feeling unable to keep up.

Add with that that Jacob just started piano lessons and Kenny is about to get braces put on (more coming on that....) and I feel like I am just treading water trying to keep my head above water. What do I do when the girls get a little older?? I think I need another me. Already, I feel like I can't keep my house clean or do half the things I feel I should be able to get done. Sigh..... I know it all works out in the end, as I said above- I am just a little overwhelmed right now!

Friday, January 21, 2011

In Your Face, Winter!!!

Anyone who knows me well knows that I hate winter. I really really do. I hate the cold and the wind and bundling up. Sure, there are nice things like the pretty fresh fallen snow and lazy snow days, but then there is the cold and slushy melting snow- just yuck! Well, tonight, I enjoyed laughing in Winter's face and letting it know it wasn't going to keep me down!

Every month, I attend a meeting for the local Mothers of Twins club. I look forward to these meetings for the night out to talk to other twin moms and we often go out to eat afterward. As the snow began to fall today and then continued to fall, I knew the meeting was in jeopardy. My family was encouraging me not to brave the roads after 4 inches of snow fall, but my friend Amy and I were determined to go if it was still on in an effort to combat our cabin fever.

Sure enough, the meeting was canceled. We were very disappointed and decided we would go out anyway and would just stay on our side of town. We went to a yummy dinner at Olive Garden and just drove slowly- I never went over 25 MPH on wide 4 lane roads. After dinner, we decided to go see a movie. Why not?? We were already out! We chose to see "Little Fockers" (which, by the way, was pretty funny- crude and dumb at times, but still entertaining). While we were waiting for the movie to start, we walked to the neighboring Bed Bath and Beyond store. I had just been complaining about how sad it is that I have been a mom for 9 1/2 years and we do not own any sleds! I never think about it until mid winter and then they are gone! Well, wouldn't you know it- they had sleds!!! So, I solved our problem and bought a few.

After the movie on the way home, we decided (at 11:30 pm...) that we should test those sleds to be sure they would work properly! We stopped at a near by sledding hill and- well, lets just say- the sleds work great! Ha ha ha! Oh my! What a laugh! It was soooo cold! We only went down twice and took pictures and our gloved fingers were painfully sore from the cold. Here are the pictures to prove our craziness:
Was in dumb to go out in the freezing cold bad roads when we didn't have too? I don't know- maybe- but you know? It was so worth it!!!! It was just what I needed and we laughed so hard and had so much fun! So, my message to Old Man Winter- "Ha! You won't keep me down!" Now I'm gonna go take a warm shower and climb into my warm bed.....

Thursday, January 6, 2011

In the Blink of an Eye..... They Are 4!!!

4 years and 2 days ago- this was our new reality....

(Meghan and Ellen)
(I have posted this picture before but it is by far my favorite of the girls!)

And now they are 4!!! Their birthday was Tuesday. I like to post on the day of my kids birthdays but had a horrible headache for 3 days straight and am just now feeling normal again. Despite my headache though, I was determined to have a good day with the girls on their day! In the morning, the girls went to Abbey's house. (Abbey is a friend of mine and we do a "preschool" exchange together- we do it two days a week for 2 hours/day- one week at my house, the next week at hers). So, at Abbey's house, they were learning the letter "I" and in honor of their birthdays, they got to decorate cookies with "I"cing! After that, we met up with some friends at Chic-Fil-A for lunch. The girls LOVE to go there! (But we don't very often because it is too expensive- but thank you Amy for the gift card!!) After lunch, we went to the indoor aquatic center/ rec center to swim for open swim- costs a whopping 50 cents/person to swim! (and that explains their crazy/frizzy hair in the pics below....) Then, it was time to rush home and get things ready for their birthday dinner! No time for a headache- I was doing my best to ignore it, though I did not feel good!

For dinner, they both requested breakfast for dinner and that sounded great to me! We had pancakes, bacon and eggs. They both requested pink and purple cakes.

I always do my best to give them each their own cake and we sing a separate happy birthday song for each girl. Meghan's was purple on the outside and pink on the inside, and Ellie's was the opposite. And don't forget presents!!!

New dress up clothes! I bought a bunch of hats, skirts, and a couple masks after Halloween for a couple of dollars each.
And here, Meghan got a "hamster wheel" for the Zhu Zhu pets that they got for Christmas and Ellie got Trio blocks. Grandma Janet sent these fun magnetic paper dolls- they played with them a long time!!! Ellie has her new lady bug pillow pet with her. They both started asking for pillow pets for Christmas after Santa had finalized his list, so I said maybe for their birthdays. Ellie got the lady bug and Meghan got the puppy dog (though I didn't catch a decent picture of the puppy dog). But, here is Meghan with the magnetic dolls:It was definitely a very good day and I know they enjoyed their birthday. On Sunday, we will have dinner with the rest of the family to celebrate.

Happy Birthday Girls!!!! We Love you!!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

My Little Chef

Jacob is proving to be quite a talented kid. He is really good at reading, piano, and he loves to cook! In fact, one of the two things he continually asked for for Christmas was a cookbook! Santa made sure to deliver! My sister also followed the theme by getting him his own personalized chef hat and apron!

The apron has his initials "JRB" and the hat has his nickname "Cubbie."

He was excited to try out some of his recipes, so last night, he made dinner- almost completely by himself!!! I was just there to guide him and instruct/ help out. He read the recipe and did the work on his own! He chose "Crispy Oven-fried chicken" and "Sweet Glazed baby carrots." Here he is, coating the chicken in the Corn Flakes mixture:

(We forgot his cook apron until we were almost done...) And stirring the carrots after cooking and adding the butter and brown sugar:

Here is the yummy food he cooked- I just added a salad to go with it!

We all enjoyed his dinner! He did a great job! We all enjoyed it and it is definitely a recipe that we (or he!) will make again! This picture isn't the most pleasant, but it was so nice to see him smiling and enjoying what he created!

Hmmmmm....maybe he could take over the cooking for the family! I could use the break!