Friday, August 29, 2014


I've been thinking a lot about transitions lately, probably because we are in the midst of so many transitions right now.  Michelle is transitioning into a new semester (started this week) and I am transitioning to a new job (starting next week) and have been transitioning back into work period after being off so much of the summer.  On top of that we have a new nanny who started two weeks ago. So life has felt pretty nutty and all over the place for the past few weeks.  I'm sure that in a few weeks or so we will have settled into a new routine, but in the meantime we're just trying to get through each day with some semblance of sanity.

Michelle has a busy semester ahead of her that is going to require quite a bit of time on campus and even more time working at home or elsewhere.  She not only has to keep up with week to week stuff for her final two classes, but is also helping a professor with an assistive technology class and starting her "Comps" project, which will be a hands on research study.  Oh yeah, and next Wednesday she defends her Candidacy paper, the first of three major projects.  This project was started pre-babies and put on hold for about 6 months.  Michelle has been working feverishly on it for the past couple of months so while she's understandably nervous about next week, it will be a big relief to check that project off!

My work transition shouldn't be too big of a change because even though I'll be working for a new company I will be keeping the majority of my caseload.  I've been thinking about making the move from Easter Seals to Strawberry Fields since the spring when my boss and another manager both left but have been wrestling with the decision a lot over the past month or so.  We had decided that what we needed as a family was for me to only be working part time like I have since the babies were born.  Financially it isn't that easy, but we've been making it work and for a few weeks before my surgery I was pretty much back to full time and we all felt pretty ragged.  After talking with my current boss, who is in Pittsburgh, I did have the option to stay with Easter Seals and go part time, but with the switch to Strawberry Fields I think I will have more overall flexibility in scheduling because it will be all early intervention (birth to 3 home visits) that I can schedule around Michelle's classes and such. And I'm looking forward to having other PTs to connect with again because since my previous manager quit I've been the only PT at Easter Seals.  So we'll see...I hope I made the right choice.

Thankfully, with all these other changes, the new nanny is working out great so far.  She is about my age and has a ten year old daughter who came with her the first week since she wasn't back in school yet.  She was a special ed teacher for ten years so she understands development and engagement which is great and she is super flexible about when she comes as long as it is during school hours.  And that flexibility is the best possible scenario for us since my work schedule will change as I get new kiddos on my caseload and Michelle's schedule may change once she starts her research project.  So we are very happy that this big piece of the puzzle seems to have fallen into place.  We will miss having Hope with them/us during the day, but she starts full time student teaching on Tuesday and will only be around in the evenings and on weekends.

Speaking of transitions, the babies have been learning some new gross motor transitions lately.  I might have to write a Motor Monday post about transitions! (I've been soooo bad about getting those written lately!)  I have been missing blogging, but with all the craziness around here and either helping proofread Michelle's paper or taking care of things around the house so she can work more I haven't really had time.  And then this week the screen on our old laptop that I usually use for blogging decided to stop lighting up. =(  So Michelle is always using the good laptop and either she is also using the iPad or it is in the guest room as a white noise machine.  Speaking of which, I know this is a long shot, but if any of our readers have an old iphone or ipod stashed in a drawer somewhere and would be willing to send it to us to use for white noise that would be super!  We will pay for shipping!  Or, for that matter, if anyone has an old laptop that they want to part with, all I need is something that will connect to the internet! =)

So that's what has been going on around here and why you haven't heard as much from us lately!  Hopefully once we get settled into our new routines that will change because I really do enjoy blogging and have been missing it lately!  Here are a handful of random cute baby pics as your reward for reading this otherwise baby-less post! =)  I do have some more baby posts coming soon (hopefully)!

playing with Mama in the "fun zone" aka baby jail
a little morning playtime in Isaiah's crib while Ellie gets changed
triplets on a trampoline! fun new thing at a friend's house
enjoying a yogurt snack
eeking out a little bit more backyard pool time from the summer

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Big kisses!!

The babies have been so super cute about giving kisses lately! And we finally managed to get some pictures and a video of it!  After they nurse and listen to a couple of books then it's time to give kisses before going to bed. Right now I think giving kisses is their favorite part of the bedtime routine!

Sisterly love 

BIG kiss
you can see I am dying laughing!
 And best of all is this video of a particularly extended good night kiss fest featured in the picture above!

We're sure this expression of sibling love won't continue forever so we're trying to enjoy it while it lasts because it is sooooo darn sweet!  Sometimes they dis' their mamas for bedtime kisses and turn their heads away, but never each other!  And it's fun to see that they know each other's names because when we say "kiss for Avery" Ellie & Isaiah will look right at her and get ready for the kiss!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Turning 10 months in Hawaii

Needless to say we didn't have room to pack the frog and the rugby ball on our trip to Hawaii so we didn't take our standard photos on the second when they turned ten months old. So my mom made a cute little sign and we took pictures at the beach. (if only that could be our standard!!) 

Our little peanuts are enjoying everything about summer! (So are their mommies!) They love to be in the water, whether it's the ocean, the big pool, or the little pool in our yard.  They love going to the parks to swing, playing in the grass, and going on walks.  They definitely know each other now and seem to, for the most part, know each other's names.  They can be super sweet and love to give each other big huge open mouth kisses.  They also annoy the heck out of each other getting in their personal space, using them to climb up, and pulling hair and ears!  All three are now aware of what the others are doing and get super jealous.  They don't like it when someone else gets picked up before them and worst of all is when one of those other babies is getting to nurse and they aren't!  They will do whatever they can within their physical abilities to get in there and steal that boob!  They're all good at feeding themselves now, which makes meal times a lot calmer.  Though they've also started to discover this fascinating thing called gravity and enjoy dropping sippy cups from their high chairs.  Oh yeah, that's new too.  They can all drink out of sippy cups and are getting pretty consistent now with straws.  They love to eat food from the reusable pouches we bought and will fight over those too if they have to share.  They still like "itsy bitsy spider," but it has lost some it's charm and are more into "the wheels on the bus" and "clap, clap, clap your hands."  And they all like to rough house and be tipped upside down or tossed in the air.  Anyway, enough rambling, here are the pics...

our littlest peanut
Oh Avery!  She is quite the little character these days!  She has a goofy laugh that sounds a bit like a machine gun and she loves to laugh with us and to get our attention and gauge our reactions. She likes to be the center of attention and notices when you are watching her and rewards you with a huge grin.  She is a total ham and will cheeseball it up for the camera now.  She is crawling on hands and knees all over the place now and still pulling to stand and cruising on everything.  Avery is an escape artist, always trying to leave the bedroom or get to the dog water bowl, and thinks it's hilarious when we catch her. She REALLY wants to walk...scratch that...she really wants to RUN!  She LOVES it when you hold her hands and let her walk and she takes off at a good clip.  Problem is she is so short and it kills our backs to do it for too long. She's always on the go and can't be bothered to play with one thing for too long.  She wants to be wherever we are and will follow us around and really doesn't like it when anyone leaves the room.  Avery HATES the feeling when she's just about to fall asleep and will scream her head off just before she konks out.

Elle belle isn't much for smiling for the camera
Ellie belle is a sweetie.  She is still our best snuggler and she really likes to be held....which is great, except when it's not because we have two other babies!  She can whine like no other and has a wide variety of whines to suit her needs including her pathetic little lamb whine and her urgent little puppy dog whine.  Ellie is really into standing up, though she still struggles to pull herself to stand.  She likes to stand holding our hands and play "row row your boat" and practice standing by herself, which really turns into a game of her diving into us and laughing.  Ellie has also just started to figure out how to move forward in a fashion vaguely like crawling though she still prefers to roll.  She thinks it is really funny to knock down block towers that we build. She has a cute little giggle and still has her big gummy smile.  Ellie also has a mad/just about to break down laugh!  Ellie loves to eat and can practically put down an adult-sized portion when she's hungry!. She was a big fan of avocados in Hawaii!

ah! got one!

"have you seen this cool shovel Grandma brought?!"
Our little dude...dude seems like an appropriate nickname for him because, for the most part, he is a pretty chill guy.  He is the most content to just sit and play by himself or lay on the floor kicking and bouncing his little butt up and down.  He claps, though this is pretty random and not in imitation.  His "go to" move is to put a toy in his mouth and clap/bang on that toy. Isaiah has a hilarious crawl.  He gets up on all fours and then launches himself forward onto his tummy, swims his little arms & legs, and then repeats.  He's gotten pretty fast at it!  His chill demeanor is much appreciated especially at bedtime when he is most likely to be super sweet in contrast to his sisters' manic pre-bed state!  Isaiah is really good at staring contests and can look into your eyes long enough that you're sure he's seeing your soul.  He still has the best belly laugh and laughs at his goofy moms all the time.  We say things like "papaya & yogurt" in a goofy low voice and he will just laugh and laugh.  He's super ticklish and a quick tickle can sometimes snap him out of a grumpy mood. Isaiah, like Ellie, likes to eat and will just eat and eat anything you give him and is getting a cute little Buddha belly to show for it.

The challenges of group photos continue...

Avery, "He touched me!" Isaiah, " Why are you crying?" Ellie, " Now where we were supposed to be looking?
we did manage to get a few decent ones...

Monday, August 4, 2014

Sun, sea, & sand

We've managed two beach days so far during our trip. One to Hapuna with everyone and one to Beach 69 with just the grandmas.  For the most part the babies loved the beach.  The liked swimming in the ocean and playing in the sand.  Here are a zillion cute pics from those two days!
Avery watching the waves
Ellie enjoying the boogie board strap
Having fun in the sand 
eating Grandma's sunglasses
two girls on the boogie board
mmm...sand toys are yummy!
Don't you think this could be an advertisement
for Aveeno baby sunscreen?!
Ellie closely inspecting her sand covered hands
Avery's favorite activity....walking!
(having two adults helps save our backs!)
Isaiah wasn't always a happy camper
(the next day he was really sick so that might've
been the real issue rather than anything about the beach!)
 I had this grand vision of a picture with all three babies on the boogie board in the ocean.  I think this would've been possible if we'd tried it first thing in the morning before Isaiah got crabby and the waves picked up.  As it can see what we got below...

would've been cute except for the screaming boy in the middle!
Add in a grandma & take away the screaming boy & it turned
out pretty cute!  

Here are the pics from our day at Beach 69...

Ellie belle in the sand (notice that we switched the girl's rash
guards...just to make it harder for all of you, of course!)
this little boy loves his shovels!

swimming in the ocean!
big eyes!!
Their favorite game this day was swimming towards each other
to give big kisses!  You can see Avery's wide open kissing
mouth in this pic!
Ellie having fun with Mommy in the ocean!
splash splash splash Avery
photo op on some cool driftwood =)
Isaiah & Mama splashing around
more kissing game fun
Isaiah was soooo cute because he was belly
laughing each & every time!
three way "swim & kiss" game =)
playing at the beach is tiring!
(of course she only slept like this for about 15min!)
And this was the napping arrangement for the other two!
I got a good workout walking them up & down the beach for 45min

Friday, August 1, 2014

Adventures in Paradise

We've been so busy having fun in Hawaii that I haven't been able to get the pictures downloaded and blog posts written! Here are some highlights from our first couple of days!

We hung out at Grandma & Grandpa's the first day and went down the road to Laupahoehoe Point in the late afternoon to have a snack and a glass of wine. No need to leave Laupahoehoe to enjoy the beauty of Hawaii!  Grandpa has such beautiful gardens and the point is always stunningly gorgeous with the waves crashing against the rocks.

Grandma & Grandpa have nice grass!
Keeping her hat on for the moment
Grandma scored a fun toy for free at the local recycle tent
we like to play inside sometimes too
Always beautiful at the point!
Family pic at the point
Grandma swap
Great pic of Avery & Mama
Nice lips Grandpa!  Wanna kiss?!
Enjoying a snack at the point
apparently we took a lot of pics of Isaiah at the point!
a gorgeous Bird of Paradise from Grandpa's yard
fruit bounty from the yard

Then on Wednesday we took Grandma Stephen on an adventure to Hilo, stopping at Akaka Falls along the way. 

In Hilo we had lunch at Cafe Pesto. It was our first restaurant trip where the babies all sat in high chairs. The floor was a disaster by the time we left, but they did super and were all in good moods the entire time!

On the drive home the babies took a car nap and we drove the scenic route (as if the entire island isn't a scenic route!) and Denise got some great shots of Onomea Bay!