Sunday, May 17, 2015

Easter 2015

Easter this year was a fun time. We had fun with Easter baskets, Easter egg hunts, General Conference and spending time with the family. Even though it only happened last month, my tired mommy brain is really trying to remembered what happened. Thankfully it is true what they say, a picture is worth a thousand words, and I tend to take a thousand pictures! So here goes nothing...

Easter morning, the kids woke up and we had fun digging into the Easter baskets. Each year we try and get them a religious type book in their Easter basket. This year they also got candy, stickers and a few toys. Below are a few pictures of the kids with their baskets.

After we opened the baskets and had some breakfast, we headed downstairs to watch General Conference. Our church has a televised conference every year where the prophet, apostles, and other leaders will share talks with us. This year it happened to coincide with Easter Sunday. We watched a session of conference with the kids while they enjoyed their candy, and mommy stuffed a whole bunch of baby diapers. Conference was inspiring as always, but I will admit that we were all a bit exhausted as we continued to adjust to life with a sweet newborn.

After Conference, we had lunch, naps, and then had the kids decorate a cake for Easter Dinner. Then we headed outside for an Easter Egg Hunt. We had Daddy hide them while we decorated the cake. Below are a few more pictures of our fun!

After the Easter Egg hunt, we packed the kids up to head over to Grandma and Grandpa's house. At this point in time, Sarah was still of the mindset that car rides were to be feared and hated. Luckily, she doesn't mind them too much now. Anyway, we had an Easter Egg Hunt there, and the boys got spoiled by Grandma. Alexander got a new tricycle for Easter and Jacob got a car to ride in. They also got some fun play dough too. We enjoyed a nice Easter dinner with ham and all the fixings, and then just had fun with the kids playing with all their new toys. Here are a few more pictures for you!

Well, that about covers our Easter fun! It was great being able to spend time with the family, bask in the joy of our newborn, and remember the Savior and all He has done for us.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Life with Three Children

Hello world! I am back for another blog post! This makes two weeks in a row, which means I am on a roll. I've decided to start blogging on Sunday evenings as a way to keep a sort of family record for us, so hopefully I keep it up. This evening I was really struggling what to blog about. I want to blog about my aunt's visit, Easter, having a little girl, her first month, and so much more! It is so hard to decide. I have finally decided to blog about something I have been thinking about the last few weeks, life with three children.

It seems as if many people that I encounter want to know how I am adjusting to life with three kids. They want to know if it is more overwhelming with two or not. Before Sarah was born, I often found myself drawn to reading blogs of mothers with multiple children. Often I would hear that the third child was the hardest because all of a sudden you are outnumbered by your children. I read that you only have two arms, or space for two children on your lap. It made me a little nervous as to how life would be with three kids. So here I am, to give you the rundown on what I think about having three kids is really like.

First off, I would say that they were wrong. Yeah, I may lack a few extra arms, but you really can fit three kiddos on your lap at once. You just have to baby bunch (have the kids close together in age) so they are all small enough to fit on your lap! Alexander will be four in August, so that means we currently have a three year old, a two year old, and a one month old. They are so little that they all want to snuggle in close quite frequently. I guess that could be considered a "challenge" with three kids, but only because they are so close in age. There are times all kids want to be all over me and it can be a little challenging, but only six weeks into life with three kids, I would say they are adjusting well. They are learning that sometimes they need to give me a little space to care for the baby. Jacob is particularly good about asking for extra cuddles when Sarah is napping. He almost always wants to cuddle when she is asleep. I think he sees it as his special time with Mommy.

The most challenging time is when I am nursing and the boys want to see Sarah. Sometimes I let them cuddle in close while I feed, and other times, I just have to tell them that Sarah needs space, and they are getting better about respecting that. Sometimes they are just so curious. They love their little sister and want to see her with her eyes open (which isn't very often in the newborn stage). So they will pull her head back, or lay on her a bit while I am nursing. So I have to be very careful when I do let them be that close. I am not one to ever take nursing pictures, but I just HAD to take a picture of me trying to nurse with both boys on either side of my nursing chair. It was the day I took this picture that I knew I had arrived as a mother of three. I figured if I could nurse her and have them that close, I could really do this mom of three thing.

I think another challenging part of having three children is trying to go places. Of course going anywhere with a newborn can be a challenge, but when you have three kids ages three and under, it can get quite challenging.Just loading them all in the car can be quite the task. I still have to buckle and unbuckle them all, and Sarah hasn't been a fan of her car seat. So often it would take a full half hour just to get shoes on and them all in the van. Even going on walks is harder. One day, I decided to go on a walk with all three kids. I decided to put Sarah in her car seat in the double stroller and let Jacob have the other seat. Well, when our three year old got tired, he wanted the other seat. Our normal fifteen minute walk turned into an hour long walk because sometimes Jacob and Alexander wanted to walk, and near the end they both wanted to sit, so we had to keep stopping so they could switch who was able to sit.

I also haven't quite been brave enough to do grocery shopping with all three kids on my own. Trying to fit three kids in a cart can be challenging enough much less where to put the groceries. So usually Scott and I do that together. There are times I have even contemplated needing two carts just so we have a spot for all the kids if the decide they want to sit, and a place for the groceries. All that being said, Alexander is growing faster every day and becoming more independent. It wont be long before he doesn't want the stroller at all, or to sit in the cart at the store. So it is just a matter of time.

Something I have learned with having three kids is how busy you really can be as a mother. When I had Alexander, I felt so tired from being up with him all night, but then again, I could literally sleep all day while he was napping because he was my only child. With three young children I have to coordinate how I will help nap the kids. Luckily Jacob is still napping, so on a good day I can still get a little shut eye too. I just have to time it right so Sarah is sleeping at the same time. I have told Scott that it feels like every time we have had a child the laundry has doubled. This is indeed the case now. I usually do at least two loads of laundry in a day, and sometimes if I decide to do none on the weekends I have as many as five loads on Monday morning. That is a lot of laundry! Between laundry, feeding children and just caring for the house, it really is a full time job! I remember telling Scott one day that I wasn't sure a stay at home mom of one could really say she was a full time mom, but a stay at home mom of three definitely qualifies as one. There have been days where it seems I barely stop to eat. I don't mean to skip out on food, but if Sarah needs to nurse right as I finished making lunch or snacks for the kids, I might forget to make something for myself. Though I will admit, I have totally nursed and ate lunch at the same time. Hey a mom's gotta do what a mom's gotta do. I will say it feels like I have started to lose the baby weight a lot faster this time. Maybe it is because I am chasing around a preschooler and toddler at the same time.

The final challenge I will share with you has more to do with numbers than anything else. I think when you have more than two children, you start becoming one of those moms that counts your kids to make sure they are all there. We had a moment the other day that I am still laughing over. We decided to go out for dinner. We stood in the line ordering our fast food, and when we had just finished Scott looked at me and said, "Honey, where's Jacob?" Instantly both of us went into panic search mode. As we stood in line cashing out we were scanning the line for where he could be. A minute later I look up at Scott and reply, "He's in your arms." This cracked me up because it reminded me just how exhausting three young children can be. He was literally holding Jacob and didn't realize it, and I didn't realize it either when he first asked. The more kids you get the more you have to be aware so one of them doesn't wander off, even if it is just wandering out of your arms!

Despite all of the challenges with carting kids around, having enough lap space, and the extra work involved, I have to say I truly do love it. As you may know, I am one of two kids; just me and my brother. Growing up, I always wished I had a sister too. My brother and I have always been close, but the older I got the more I realized I wanted a large family. I remember shortly after high school that one of my friends lost her brother in an avalanche accident while he was mountain climbing. He was her only brother and she didn't have sisters. I couldn't help but think how I would have felt if that was my brother. It gave me a desire to have more children so that there was more support with other siblings if a tragedy occurred. Before marriage I would have said I want six children. Now that I have been through three pregnancies and have had to care for three children in the day to day moments, I am not quite sure how many we will have. There are challenging moments when it seems all three of them are crying at once and I just need a breath, or moments where I feel like my personal bubble has been popped all day long and I just need physical space from everyone. And then there are moments when I see how much the boys love and adore their sister. I realize I am blessing them with a lifelong friend from the beginning, and how awesome that truly will be for them. And the bond between them just grows stronger each day. It is in moments like this that I think that I could have a whole litter of children. I am constantly amazed at how much they truly love and adore each other. When Sarah cries, Alexander sings her the ABC's, and Jacob kisses her on the head. I never taught them to do those things, they just did it all on their own from the moment they saw her in the hospital. They both ask to hold her multiple times a day. I just can't help but feel that their bond is already forming, and it warms my heart to see the love they have for each other. Life with three is busier, as is to be expected. Life with three kids ages three and under, is demanding. No matter the challenges, I wouldn't have it any other way. The blessings far outweigh the challenging moments. My heart is more full and our home has more love to go around. I am truly blessed.