Sick Babies

A couple weeks ago we had two very sick babies. Noah screamed all night one night and was diagnosed with an ear infection the next day. Within a couple days of starting the antibiotics he was doing much better.

Joel wasn’t nearly so easy. He screamed all night long and told us his throat hurt, but it was a weekend so we took him to the pediatric urgent care where they said he didn’t have strep but his throat was red from postnasal drop. Nothing to worry about, he’d feel better soon.

He kept getting worse, though, so a couple days later we took him to his pediatrician and he had very severe tonsillitis! There was no postnasal drip at all. He was so much better after just one dose of antibiotics and within a week was the happy, mischievous baby we are used to.

A Date With Mayci

Once a week we take a kid on a date. When it was Mayci’s turn she chose to go to Big’z Burger Joint, a place with, quite possibly, the best burgers in the world.

I taught her how to make orange sauce and how to use a fry to mix it up. Ketchup and mustard together is just way superior to each on their own.

One of the most fun things about Big’z is they have a big fenced in field so kids can run around and play while waiting for their food/for parents to finish their food. There’s always balls to kick around out there. Mayci discovered it’s not quite as fun without her siblings with her.

The only time the kids get soda is when they are on their date. She wanted Dr Pepper like her Daddy drinks. She is a fan.

It’s always fun to have a little two-on-one time with our kids. With this many children it’s pretty much a must to plan specific time for each of them.

The Pink Stuff (Spray)

Large families swear by The Pink Stuff. Up until recently I had only used the paste (which is quite amazing at taking crayon, pen, and even sharpie off walls). Then I tried the multipurpose spray.

We had had spaghetti and meatballs for dinner and sauce had splattered on the counter and ever since school ended that counter had kind of become a catchall so it was in bad need of being cleaned. Usually I use 409 which smells awful and takes a bit of scrubbing (but certainly leaves things clean).

To say I am a fan of The Pink Stuff is an understatement. Anything that can take marks off walls is worthy of being bought in bulk when you have a bunch of little kids. But this multipurpose spray is absolutely incredible.

It doesn’t smell bad. In fact, the scent is quite pleasant. It also doesn’t make my hands itch. It left my counters so clean that even though I had planned on just doing the one section I ended up doing all of them.

The most amazing thing about The Pink Stuff multipurpose spray is how easy it is. You spray it on and then one quick swipe is all it usually takes to remove whatever has taken up residence on the counters. I did the whole kitchen in half the time it usually takes me. 5 out of 5 stars. Get yourself The Pink Stuff. It’s truly amazing stuff.

The most amazing flowers

For Mother’s Day my bonus daughter gave me a bouquet of flowers. Usually I hate flowers. They just end up dying.

But these won’t die because they are made of paper! Not only are they made of paper, they are made of the pages from a book!

Looking at the bits you can read, they are made from pages of Alice in Wonderland. This is seriously one of the most thoughtful gifts ever!

Snack Trays

I’ve been making the kids pretty much daily snack trays with a variety of meat, cheese, fruit, and crackers for their morning snack.

They absolutely love them! They cheer when they see me making them. On occasions I make them a little earlier than snack time they ask approximately every 22 seconds if they can have it yet.

Once it’s time to eat, it’s a serious feeding frenzy. They love getting to choose exactly what parts to eat for their snack. I love that it’s so much healthier from the prepackaged stuff we normally give them (since it’s so easy).

I think their favorite thing about the snack trays is that I put a few pieces of fruit that they haven’t had in a long time on there. Anthony’s intestines have been slow to mature so certain types of fruit has not been allowed. As the doctor promised, as he gets older he’s able to tolerate more (plus with him being at home it’s less of a worry if there is a reaction).

It’s fun to make the trays creative and to vary some of the components each day. Turkey, salami, and pepperoni are the clear winners over ham and roast beef (though I keep giving them a little of those each day and sometimes one of them will eat some).

I’m not kidding when I say these kids can demolish an entire snack tray in two minutes flat. It’s kind of fascinating to watch.

Anthony at Church

The other Sunday Anthony just was not feeling the going to class thing so I spent the second hour in the hallway with him. Eventually we ended up in an empty classroom where he figured out how to fold chairs.

He folded and put up a whole lot of chairs. I joked that means he’ll be an excellent Priesthood holder one day since it’s always the men doing most of the folding and putting away of chairs.

Once he finished putting away all the chairs he put up the table that was leaning against the wall folded up. Impressive since I’ve seen plenty of adults struggle putting up those tables.

He ended up opening some of the chairs he had just put away and dragging them across the room (it’s a very echo-y room since it used to be the library and has no sound dampening anything in there… which is probably why it was empty while church was going on).

He set up four chairs around the table. It was very hard work, but he was determined to do it. And he was having a whole lot of fun.

Once he got the table and chairs set up the way he wanted them he very quietly sat in one of the chairs until it was time to pick up his siblings from their classes and go home.

Wall Calendar

We put a whiteboard up on the wall so we can all see what’s going on each week. I included our meal plan as well since the kids are constantly asking what’s for dinner. Most Thursdays we take one kid out on a date (since my parents make dinner that day) so I write on there who has the date night that week. They love to check to see if it’s their turn yet and the one who it is their turn loves to go back and look at their name and count how many days until their date.