Thursday, July 30, 2009


We had dinner at Chik-fil-a tonight, which is super fun now because Chase is finally independent enough to play on the indoor playground by himself.  We can sit at our table and he and Ian go into the play area and have at it while Bryan and I enjoy adult conversation.

Well, kind of adult.  A lot of our conversations revolve around what the kids have done that day, how many poopy diapers Chase has had, and if Gavin has projectile vomited on anyone lately. 

But that has nothing to do with my story.  

Anyhoo.  The play structure has one giant step/ladder thingy going up to some tubey-crawl thing on top and a big yellow spiral slide going down.   Chase is just too short still to make it up the steps (they are big and platform-like), so he discovered on his own that he can climb all the way UP the slide to the top.  It is totally cute.  The only problem is, he jams up traffic going down the slide.  

So, at one point, we notice that we can't see any kids anywhere.  Chase and Ian are gone, as are the 6 or 7 other kids out there.  Then we realize that they are all trying to go down the slide, only there is a Chasey-plug at the end of it.  

I am almost out of my seat, ready to go save him from some kid who will probably just muscle him out the end of the slide onto his head, when I hear a voice from another table who has a direct view of the end of the slide.

"Look!   They are all giving him hugs!!!"

Yes, all the kids were trying to get out of the slide, but one at a time as they passed Chase on the way out, they were hugging him.  Not pushing or shoving.  They were all taking care of him.

Admittedly, I have fears of kids ridiculing him, mocking him, even hurting him, when I am not there to protect him someday.  But maybe the rest of the world will be a little bit like the big slide at Chik-fil-a.  


Chase and Lindsay

I've been trying to post these photos, but my blog has some problem with them.  They are photos of Chase and his BFF Lindsay, who we've known since they were both teeny.  Our families got in contact through our Down syndrome association, way back when.

Anyway.  Check them out here, over at April's blog.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Bathtime to the Third Power

We put all the boys in the tub tonight.  Here are pictures of the ruckus:

After bath faux-hawk :)

Yipes. Because I need one more thing to worry about.

Chase is literally all over the place, constantly.  But he showed me a new trick today to add to all the fun.

As I was cooking dinner just now, he was playing at my feet, emptying the tupperware cabinet, banging the muffin pans together, etc.  Then he stands up, grabs the knob on the front of the stove, and ignites the burner.  It's not child proofed, but you do have to push the knob in and turn it all the way to the left to spark it.  And he did it.  I think it was on accident, but who is to say that he won't accidentally do it again?!  Oy.  

I wonder if there is a box to mark on his developmental evaluations for this.  
Does your child attempt to cook dinner or burn the house down?  
On a scale from 1-5, how well does your child put himself and others in danger in the kitchen?

A Day in the Life....

Ian loves telling Gavin about all the stuff he knows about.
A full breakfast table, every morning.
One of my favorite Gavin photos now.
Spacey Chasey!!
Almost a smile :)

Baby Boot Camp

I happened to catch this moment:

If you look closely in the background, you can see a Rollaround ball flying through the air towards an unsuspecting Gavin, courtesy of one of the monkeys playing behind him.  Luckily, neither Will nor Chase have any type of aim yet, so it didn't actually hit the baby...but I'm sure something will in time. 

Gavin is going to be one tough little kid.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Plate Throwing

I need some advice here.  

One of Chase's favorite things to do is to throw his plate off the table when he is done eating.  And not just drop an empty plate on the floor, either.  Most meals, he takes 2 or 3 bites and then turns the plate upside down, shakes it to make sure every last piece of food is out, and then tosses it.  He's broken one plate and I've cleaned up more meals than I can count off the floor.  

He does have good days.  It's not all the time, but it is definitely enough to drive me almost all the way to the looney bin.  And it has made me very cautious about what I put in front of  him.  Big chunks of sandwich?  Ok.  Rice?  Nope.  Red jello?  How about yellow instead?  Yogurt?

And he knows exactly what he is doing.  He waits for the moment that I look away.   I usually sit with one hand on his plate while I eat with the other hand.  The other night, he waited until I took my hand off his plate in order to cut Ian's potato-- and then he struck.  Like lightning.  He is incredibly fast.  And sometimes, he has the audacity to take my hand off of his plate, then get upset with me when I won't.

I've tried those bowls with the suction bottoms.  They work for a little while, but then he pulls so hard that eventually they give, and then we have added mess because the food is propelled UP as well as off the plate.  I've given him a few pieces of food at a time, sans plate, and if he is not interested, the pieces are swept to the floor.  We work on positive reinforcement.  Even Ian cheers like we're winning the House Cup when "Chasey is eating soooo good!".  And always, when anything is thrown, I get him out of his chair and make him clean it- and he does.  Happily.  La la la.  Like it is a fun thing to do.  Oh- and we've been exercising the parental right to end dinner time for him if he throws anything.  Doesn't phase him.  He's not a big fan of eating to begin with.

He is driving me freaking bananas.

So what do I do?  On one hand, I feel that it is important for him to have a plate in front of him and to teach him to eat off of it.  On the other hand, life is a hella lot easier when I don't have to prepare 3 meals and 2 snacks every day and then clean them up off the floor immediately after serving them.


1 Month Stats

At the ped's yesterday for Gavin's 1 month appt:

Weight: 10lbs 14 oz (75%)
Height: 22 1/4 in. (75-90%)

Everything looks good :)

I have to say, it is a little strange and unnerving to walk in and out without a hitch.  No specialist appointments to make, no follow-ups, no therapist referrals.  Just in and out.  The end.  

I appreciate it, though.  I really do.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Chase and his Big Boy Bed

The transition to the twin bed for Chase has been a little roller-coastery.  Some nights he's fine, others he gets up 2 or 3 times just to wander around the second floor to check things out.  Sometimes he lays in bed and falls asleep when we leave him after stories, other times he mischeiviously leaves his room, shutting the door behind him, and pokes his head around the corner with a big grin on his face a few times before we have to close him in the room.

His crib is still in there as an insurance policy...mostly for naps, as I can't keep running up and down the stairs with 4 others to watch and keep from killing each other.  But naps have been better, and for the last week or so, he's been taking his naps in the big boy bed.

But just a few minutes ago, I laid him down, said good night, and left the room.  He got up and out before I reached the stairs.  So I shooed him back in bed, did the whole routine again, but this time shut the door.  He usually doesn't like that, but lately has been pretty much indifferent to it.  This time, he didn't mind, so I totally thought that he was tired enough not to care, and would be fast asleep within minutes.

Not so.  I heard a bonk.  I went upstairs... Chase is sitting, perfectly happy and content, in his rocking chair, reading "That's Not My Puppy."  It is really hard to enforce things like that, though, because on one hand, he should be in bed because that's what I told him to do.  On the other hand, can I really punish him for reading a book?  And the smile on his face...impish, but at the same time, completely oblivious that he is doing something he shouldn't be.  Wish I had my camera on was priceless.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Growing a Boy

Gavin is 4 weeks old tomorrow!  How did that happen?!

Here are photos of his first bath.  It was only this past Saturday, since it took over 3 weeks for his nasty belly button to fall off.  I am predicting that this Maddex boy will not be known for his punctuality.
Not sure about this whole bath thing...
No, definitely not a fan of baths.  Nor of funny soap hair-do's.
Classic Grumpy Gavin.  He has a really sweet temperament, but a seriously grumpy looking face much of the time.
Here is a bonus pic of a sleeping Gavin, who loves his paci and his monkey.

Zucchini Crop

Our zucchini is beginning to get out of hand.  Ian shredded 8 cups of it the other day ("No, Mom!  Don't help me!  I can do it BY MYSELF!") and there are several more ripening outside.  We are already one batch of zucchini bread in (yeah, that lasted for about one day).

Anyway.  Here is my little kitchen aide :)

Music Lessons

I am seriously contemplating starting Ian on piano lessons.  Any input on this?  Is it too early?  Is it silly?  I think he'd like it, plus it would be a big boy deal-- something special that those dumb babies can't do yet.

The local piano studio offers one complimentary lesson, so I figure I'll take him at least once and see what his reaction is...

Chasey CheeseFace

Chase started hamming it up for the camera for the first time ever today:

*btw, that is William hanging out with him.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

There Are Always Bumps

Today as I sat at the kitchen table, feeding yogurt to William, painting with Ian, nursing Gavin, the phone rang.  As I got up to answer it, Chase wanted some Cheerios, so I cradled the phone on my shoulder and opened the box (still attempting to keep Gavin latched, btw).  Chase grabbed the box and upended it covering the floor with cereal.

And that was just one of the stellar moments that my day was composed of.

I know I have lots of blessings.  Truly, my problems are trivial.  

But there were several moments today that made me want to crawl under the couch and cry.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Over It.

Ok, I know that Gavin is only 3 weeks old, but I am over looking and feeling like I am still 6 months pregnant.  

Yesterday, in preparation for  a healthy diet and exercise program, I ate almost a dozen oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.  It is time.  So, today I am publically announcing my comeback.  Maybe not triathlon style, but at least an attempt to not eat everything in the pantry, and a decent stroll on the treadmill in a regular type fashion.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cow Skipping

Our church is in the middle of a sermon series called "Cow Tipping", where Pastor Steven addresses the sacred "cows" or topics, that many churches are afraid to address.  It's good stuff, and filled with bovine humor.  

Anyhoo, in honor of this, our small group is participating in a challenge to eliminate cow products from as many meals as we can this week.  There is apparently a fabulous prize for the group that has the most cow-free meals.

Frankly, this couldn't have come at a better time, because I think Gavin may have some kind of lactose intolerance.  He's always been pretty gaseous (we brought him to the theatre with us to see Harry Potter, and he was rather loud at the rear end during just about every quiet scene) and today he has been spitting up a lot.  I thought back to what I ate today, and it was cheese pizza, 2 huge glasses of milk, and perhaps more chocolate chip cookies than I should have had.

So this week will be an experiment.  Although I am a little bummed that I can't have milk in my coffee tomorrow.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Masterpiece Studios

Our DSAC birth-3 group did an art workshop at this cool 
studio near us.  There was much mess, 
and also some eating of paint.

Friday, July 17, 2009


**sidenote while I'm thinking about it:  Chase now yells for Gaga just like Ian does.  I randomly hear, "Gaaaaaaaagaaaaaaaaa!"  a la Sly Stallone.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

All in the Timing

So, every once in a while I can con the boys into taking a bath while I take a shower.  It works out well: I get clean and they get to play.  This morning we did that, but our get-out-dry-off-get-dressed routine was thrown off because Gavin woke up half way through.  So, I didn't get a diaper on Chase as quickly as I usually do.  

Do you see where this is going?

He's playing happily in my bedroom and the hallway (I just close all the doors upstairs and he toodles around completely content with this little bit of freedom) while I get dressed.  Then I leave the bedroom to get clothes for him and Ian.  

Except there are footprints going all the way down the hallway, ending with Chase, sitting nekid, examining the bottom of his feet.

Yup.  Ew.  And I just had that carpet cleaned.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Garden News!!

We have harvested 6 grape tomatoes, 2 zucchini, and 2 yellow squash!

We also have 4 teeny tiny watermelons growing :)  

Friday, July 10, 2009

Playgroup and New Stroller Issues

We had our Roots and Shoots playgroup today at the mall play place.  I got to try out my new Joovy Ultralight Caboose and it was very much fun.  Ian had lots of older siblings to play with, and Chase has discovered the secret to climbing up the slide, so he spent most of his time there.  Gavin ate and slept the whole time.  

We did lunch in the food court afterwards, and Bryan met us on his lunch break.  

The stroller worked out pretty well, except that Ian's legs have apparently grown so weak that he can no longer walk on his own, and insists on standing on the platform in the back while Chase sits on the jumpseat, which makes it mucho crowded back there.  Even with the added weight on the back, it was super easy to manuever, even with one hand, as I had a giant gift bag filled with wipes and diapers from one of my mommy friends.  The only problem was the parent organizer thingy on the handle bar is too close to Chase- he can reach it and pull out the drink that I had tucked in there.  Twice.  Yes.  A full cup of McAlister's lemonade dumped on the floor not once, but refilled and dumped again.  I'm sure I heard applause from the security/clean-up crew as we finally exited the building.   I think I can turn the organizer backwards, so I will have to explore that possibility next time.  Either that, or I'll get one of those camel-packs and just wear my beverages...

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Gavin Weight Check

Not all that interesting, but I want to be able to remember things:

Today at 13 days, Gavin weighed in at 9lb 4 oz at the ped office.  That is 7 oz past his birth weight!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


In the car, Chase was being especially talkative.  Which really means he was yelling, "Ya ya ya ya ya ya ya ya...!"  without pause.

Ian yells from the back of the van, "Mo-om!  All I want is a piece of quiet!"

We all do, baby.  We all do.


Nursing Gavin so far has been really easy'  The hard part is keeping Chase out of trouble while i do it.  Today he discovered that he can push his little chair around the kitchen to reach things he isn't supposed to.  Good thing he isn't strong enough to actually turn the door handle...
Chase reads his favorite book, Knick Knack Paddywack.
Gavin gets lots of kisses.
All my boys :)
Bryan doing the housecleaning!  Whenever I vacuum, this is what it looks like, too.  Both Chase and Ian have to have their own vacuums and help me get the job done.

1st Photo Shoot Attempt (with titles)

Baby crying, middle child thinks about pulling hair.
Chase takes delight in handful of curls.
Sweet nose-kiss.
Razor nose-pull.
Chase as Gene Simmons, Baby punches eldest.
Bright eyes :)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Field Trip

Today marks a milestone:
I took all three kids to run errands with me.  We made it to the dry cleaners and to Target.

*Ian declaring that he was soooooooooo thirsty and demanding that we stop for a slushy before we even left the neighborhood.
*Chase pulling out 4 handfuls of Ian's hair while they sat next to each other in the GIANT Target cart.
*Gavin slept the entire time we were out, except for when I nursed him in the car before braving the store.
*How cute the boys looked all tucked into the cart (before the hair pulling incident)
*The perfect awesome baby things I got for my friend Angelle, who is having her first boy in November.
*The big scratch that I put into the side of the van when the cart rolled away while I was trying to finagle Chase and Gavin into the car.
*My feeling of sheer and total accomplishment when we got home without too much damage.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Boom Boom POW

Happy 4th, everyone!

We celebrated here with a pool party and hot dogs on the grill with our wonderful neighbors (Hi Larsens!) and Papa and Gaga.  Later, the boys (really, the dads) set off a bunch of fireworks in a not-so-safe fashion.  Ahem- that would especially be my husband, who was actually aiming them at Brandon (the other dad).

The evening's highlights:  1- Porter (who is 3) getting the first bee sting (besides Bryan) from our hives.  2- The Mason jar explosion that occurred when someone put 120 lit sparklers inside of it.

Chase and Gavin pretty much missed all the fireworks, which I kind of feel bad about (Chase, mostly) but in reality, he would probably be scared and sign "all done" the entire time.  Also, we started them like 2 hours past his bedtime and the child really needs his sleep.  Next year, perhaps. 

No photos.  I sucked this holiday up this matching t-shirts or anything...!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Week One

My mom pointed out that it has been 5 days since my last post.  Thanks, Ma.

So, this is what we've been up to:

Monday- no idea.  Can't remember.  Very little sleep that night.

Tuesday- Can't remember that either.  Pretty sure Bryan and I watched a bunch of season one True Bloods at night.  Again, very little sleep.

Wednesday- Hmmm.  ?  I think I took Ian and Chase to the library while Bryan stayed at home with sleeping Gavin so he could get some work done.  Ian played on the computer there, and Chase ran through the aisles wildly.  Less sleep at night.

Thursday- Haven't a clue what happened in the morning.  Bryan watched the boys, I think Chase had therapy...?  I slept until 9:30 because Gavin has decided that the optimal hours for sleeping are between 6am and 9am.  We took the whole family out to dinner (Olive Garden- where Ian ate most of my seafood pomodoro- is that what it's called?)  and then to the mall so that the boys could run around on the play place.  We had ice cream afterwards :)  Chase makes quite the mess with his ice cream cone because he signs 'ice cream' in between each bite, licking his hand every time.  Not a lot of sleep again.

Friday- The best day of all.  A friend from my women's group at church is a massage therapist and called to offer me a complimentary post-partum massage.  After thinking it over (not) I told her we would be ready by noon.  She gave me an awesome massage, then one for Bryan, too.  Ian even got up on the table and was rubbed down.  Now we are totally useless and noodle-ly, and camped out in the living room watching more True Bloods.

Overall, I cannot complain a bit.  Yeah, the sleep thing is hard, but Bryan has continued to give me a couple extra hours every morning.  The boys are settling down, Ian is not quite as wild as he was earlier this week, and Chasey is still being relatively gentle with Gavin.  Speaking of the baby...he is continuing to be totally laid back and wonderful.  Aside from the whole nocturnal thing.