Monday, July 31, 2017

More Soccer!

I know I just posted recently about Makenna's soccer practice... But I wanted to post again a video of her practicing. I am very excited for this year simply because this is her third year and she's one of the older kids, so I think she is going to do great this year. She did not make any goals last year so that's her hopes for this year! We will see.

Sunday Afternoon's

For as long as I can remember, we have been going to my in-laws most Sunday afternoon's. It's always a great time and the kids seem to really enjoy it. They usually go swimming and play outside. There are about 20 grandkids on this side so it's hard for them to spend time with the kids and this is a great way to do it. We all get together and have a good time. Josh's mom cooks dinner every Sunday for all of us. I still don't know how she does it every Sunday! The girls and I try to give her a break every once in awhile but we don't do it as often as we should. Between Janna and Rick, Josh's mom and stepdad, there are 6 kids each having between 1 and 6 kids per family. Most are biological, some are Janna's biological and some are Rick's biological, and then we have significant other kids as well. So there's much love to go around as we try to treat all of them the same. I love having a big family!

Yesterday, we played Dominoes... it's becoming a must on Sundays now! There are just so many of us that love playing, even the kids play with us. And Jace of course loves playing outside and made a new friend... Mrs. Toad. According to him it was a female...  well simply because it did not have boy parts. Lol




Sunday, July 30, 2017

Cousin Josie

My sister and I will take turns having overnight play dates to give each other a break. It hasn't happenened in awhile but happy we are starting up again! I usually only have her take 1 or 2 as all four can be a lot for someone not used to it, but it still gives me an easier time... Less fighting for sure. There is a huge difference going from four to two or three and the kids love spending time with their cousin Josie. Makenna actually went and stayed the night at her other cousins house the same night so it made it even easier. She struggles feeling included with Jaeli and Maysie so it was much needed for her.

I took them to my in-laws to swim for a bit and then came home and they watched movies and played. They were up much earlier than expected but ate a huge breakfast and then played outside for awhile. Pretty easy time and was nice to spend some time with Josie.







Friday, July 28, 2017

Four or More

So here is a great article that talks about what it's like to have 4 or more kids.  I know every family has their own challenges and struggles whether they have one kid, two kids, three kids, or more. It can just be very frustrating at times when people with one or two kids try to compare their lives to our lives and how we raise our kids.

We raise our kids completely different because our situation is completely different. And I hate when I'm judged from someone who has never lived a day in my life.  But then again I can't really be mad because they just don't understand and they probably never will.

5 things parents of four or more kids want you to know

Look at that, they're actually getting along!

Playing Games

The kids always love playing games. It does get frustrating for me at times though because they usually end up fighting or crying because someone lost, or someone else wants to go first, or it's not the game they want to play. But on the rare occasion, we have fun.

So last night, I pulled out Truth or Dare Jenga. I wasn't sure how appropriate the content on the blocks would be, but really it wasn't that bad. So we played a few rounds and the kids had fun acting out the dares, and watching me do them! It was so funny to hear all their laughs during the dares and when they would all fall.

Then we decided to play the Jelly Bean game... you know, the one where it gives you a good, and a bad jelly bean for each color jelly bean. We usually play our own way instead of the way it was intended. They had fun with that too. Actually Jaeli and Maysie just handed the jelly beans to Makenna and Jace because they did not want to "try" them. I wont name names, but one of the girls picks a color and gives it to her sibling. She then says something like, "Oh, that will be easy for him/her, they will win either way because he/she eats her boogers." The color was a spotted tan, which can either be something good (I can't remember), or boogers. It was very funny. They only liked a couple of the "bad" tasting ones and would make such a funny face when getting a bad one. I did try to record it, but they would always stop once they saw the camera come out.

Not sure what is going on with his face. I think he was acting out "eating something that tastes bad" and he was shaking his head.


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

School Supplies

Crazy to think school is only three weeks away! I think I have all the school supplies needed including gym shoes. There's a lot of stuff needed to get them through the year, as well as clothes that aren't covered in holes and dirty from the summer. As sad as it is I am looking forward to the school season starting again just to simply get us back on schedule. Summers can be rough and very expensive for daycare. They go to daycare 3 days a week all summer long which is very pricey, but a huge thanks to their Grandma for taking them 2 days a week so the price doesn't double. But they have fun at Day Camp, it keeps them active. And with me working at home full-time they can't be here so it works out well.

Three 3rd graders and a 2nd grader! Where has time gone?

Soccer Season

It's that time of the year! We just ended baseball season about a month ago and now it's time for soccer. I only have one in soccer this year. Makenna, Jace, and Jaeli all played last year, well Jaeli only played a couple games because she broke her arm. Makenna was the only one that wanted to play this year. She says it's her 2nd favorite sport. She will be one of the older girls on the team so hoping she does pretty good this year. It's her third year and she's had the same coaches for the last 3 years. She seems to like them. We had her first soccer practice on Monday and will be every Monday until the season ends in October with Saturday games starting in August. On the plus side since she's the only one, I can just drop her off and take the others to the park instead of having to sit there the whole time. Then Saturday mornings we can all go to the games! Sometimes it gets hard having Josh work 2nd shift and being on my own every night running around to games and practices and school stuff, but I manage! Although lately he's been home most evenings but not usually in time for practices so I'm still on my own. I am sure once his season picks back up at work it will be back to being gone all night. But it works for us, it's all we know. I definitely don't miss being at home all night every night during the week by myself with the kids. It is nice to have him here. Maybe one day it will be permanent. But until then I'm sure we will figure it out!




Monday, July 24, 2017

Camping with the Becks!

Over the weekend we had camping trip number 3 or 4 of the summer with the Becks. Its always fun camping with them. Can always count on Justin to join the fun, Jason usually stays up all night but this time failed to keep the coons away, and Jeremy always gives us a good laugh! Sorry Jerod missed it but we did get the pleasure of a couple of his kids joining us, Kailie and Kynzi. And I can't forget Mama Sue (Grandma J) who does so much for all of us and loves to spend time with family. Then there is Papa Beck (Grandpa)... Although he likes to tease, wouldn't be the same without him! And then there's the "girls", Allisa and Michelle... Always a fun time with you two! The kids had a blast of course and always love camping. I think they had about 11 of there cousins there to play with. The only downfall was the horrible rain Friday and Saturday morning. Lost a canopy and had to deal with lots of mud. Kids and I did leave for a bit during the worst of it. But had a decent day Saturday after lunch. Oh, and can't forget to mention Jace's first physical fight. He and the other boy both said they threw the first punch... Can't really be mad since he is telling the truth... I think. Jace said the boy was bullying him so he hit him. Then the kid, who was bigger than him tackled him three times. Poor guy. I was in the shower when it happened but the kids parents came over to talk and Grandma made them shake hands and told them to be friends! But not sure they ever became friends. Unfortunately didn't take many pictures but there are a few below, mostly of my attempt at face painting! Looking forward to next time!












Thursday, July 20, 2017

Braces! Yikes!

Well we have started early. Makenna needed braces early due to the way her adult teeth are conning in and an issue with her gums. She has had a spacer for a couple months now and today she got her first round of braces. Crossing my fingers she won't need them when she's older but it's probably wishful thinking! Jaeli's teeth are looking pretty good so hopefully she won't need them... But again, wishful thinking! Maysies's are a bit crooked so she will need them later... And Jace, it's too soon to tell. He has the large space in between his teeth with his lip coming down lower than it should and will most likely need it clipped when his adult front teeth cone in. He's lost one and the other is loose so will probably be sooner than later. He is not looking forward to it! Better start saving now for all this dental and orthodontic work x 4! Yikes!


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Taking Pictures


I haven't taken any really good pics of the kids lately and wanted a new environment to try it out. My sister-in-law texted on Monday and asked us to go swimming at my in-laws. So I thought sure, I can take pictures there. I picked the kids up from Day Camp and we headed to the gas station. I needed gas, but I also needed a bribe! I take pictures of the kids a lot! I have since they were born. And since they could understand what candy was, I have bribed them with it. It almost always works! They know if they deal with me putting them in different positions and smile, they will get their candy. So this time I bought them each a candy bar, as well as one for their cousins we were swimming with. The first set we took was horrible! They just were not into it. So we moved over the fence... well... there was an ant hill and they started climbing up their feet and legs. It was funny. So we moved over to the front of the deck and took some good ones there. My goal was to get one good group one but the girls usually enjoy taking individual ones too. So once I thought I had a good one, we moved onto individual. I always start with Jace just because he never wants to do it and its best to get it over with before he gets tired of it. I let them each pick where they wanted to go. Jace of course, wanted the swings. Jaeli did too, but I talked her into somewhere else. I wanted them all to be in different locations. Makenna picked the garden and Maysie picked by some flowers. Overall, they did good and the some of the family got to witness the struggle to get good pics! My favorite is the group one! Out of probably 60 pictures I took, there really was only these 4 that turned out good.
 


Makenna


Jace



Jaeli


Maysie



Sunday, July 16, 2017

Canoe Trip

On Saturday, we went on a family canoe trip about an hour south of us. Josh's cousin wanted the family to connect all our tubes and float down the river for his birthday. We thought it would be a fun trip for the kids and we would get to spend some time with that side of the family. We all had a blast! The weather was perfect and although the river was going a bit fast, it made it that much more fun... Well aside from one small mishap Maysie and I encountered! I had Maysie's tube tied to my tube, Jaeli was with Josh, along with Jace when he felt like it and wasn't jumping out of his tube, and I think Makenna's tube was tied up with Aunt Tracy and Steve. About 10 minutes into it some how Maysie and I got stuck in the back of the group. Grandma J was close by with Jace. I see a bunch of trees ahead of us and know I better start paddling before we get stuck in them. Well if u ask Josh, I paddle the wrong way, so maybe that's why we headed right for them. Janna and Jace couldn't slow down to help us and eventually they were out of sight. I knew we were in trouble! Maysie starts crying when we get trapped on this huge log. Janna said she could hear her crying but couldn't do anything about it. Thankfully these two couples in canoes came up right after we got stuck. As they go by, they ask if we need help. Maysie cries out Yes! I said I think I can get us out. Thankfully I managed to without having to get in the water! I pushed Maysie over the log and then scooted my way over. We were free! The couples in the canoes could tell Maysie was still traumatized and asked if we wanted them to pull us up to our group. So I said sure, that would be great! So they rowed back a bit to come to us and then we grabed onto the rope on the back of their canoe. When we got close they said they weren't going to be able to stop because the river was going too fast. I said that was fine we would let go and jump out to meet up with the rest of our group who were waiting on us off to the side. So I shouted thank you very much and attempted to jump out after letting go. Of course I fell right into the water! It gave everyone a pretty good laugh though. Maysie was just happy to get out for a bit. After that we decided to tie ourselves to a few more people in our group so we could continue and not have to worry about getting stuck again like that without help. I think the kids favorite part was when the got to play in the water and Tracy and Grandma and Michelle would hold onto them in the middle of the river where it was going fast and then just let them go with their feet in front of them until they reached the person waiting on them. It was fun to watch! The four-hour trip turned into about two and a half hours because the river was going so fast but we all had a great time and hope to do it again soon! Thanks Chase for the invite! And sorry Allisa for breaking our plans so we could go on this trip! I see a canoe trip in our near future, especially with those who did not get to join us this time!







Friday, July 14, 2017

Chores

The kids have been very lazy lately with chores. So, it was time to come up with a new reward system. We've done many in the past but they usually only last a month or so and the kids get bored with it and we move on to something else. But it's been a while so I came up with this new one. When the kids are in school they usually have a daily list of things that have to be done. It seems to work well for them so I thought I would give it a try for home as well. 2 days into it they seem to be okay with it and have done well so far. About once every two months they get some one-on-one time with me and we end up going to the store so I can buy groceries. Because going to the grocery store with four kids is impossible! But with just one they are usually pretty good about helping out. I have always let them buy something small when they're with me as a little treat. Well at times they complain that they want something worth more but I try to stick to the price limit I have set. So now with this new reward system they can earn more money to be used on their one-on-one time. Overall they have a daily checklist of things that need to be done and if they complete that checklist I will sign their sheet and it will be worth $0.50. And they can earn an extra quarter for good behavior that day. Ultimately they don't usually earn the extra quarter and they won't do this every day. But if they would do it every day and earn the extra quarter it adds up to like $30 by the time they have their one-on-one time. When it's their time I'll go through the box of my signed sheets and pull all theirs out and count them up. I have a feeling Makenna will be the only one that gets close to it. Since they have been struggling to read this summer and I don't want them to be completely lost when they go back to school, one of the things I have added is a worksheet and reading a book each day. So hopefully they will be prepared when they go on to the next grade in just four short weeks. They also consists of the normal stuff like brushing their teeth, taking a shower, picking up their room, and then they each have two other chores they are to do. Like brush the dog, brush the cat, feed the dog, water the dog, let the dog in and out, the litter box, put the dishes away, organize the shoes and books, check the trash, pick up the bathroom and make sure the toilets are flushed. I'm excited about checking the toilets. I am so tired of them not flushing and the bathrooms smelling horrible! Poor Maysie got stuck with this one. I am sure when they get older I will add more difficult tasks that are worth more money or we'll just do something completely different. Hopefully we all stick to this and it becomes a success. We've had some failures in the past but they're a little older now and need to start being more responsible.




Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Some alone time with Miss Jaeli Jo

Twice a month I send three of the kids with their Grandma and rotate which one I keep for some one-on-one time. Jaeli's turn was up. So I had her yesterday all to myself. They look forward to this time alone since they're with their siblings all the time and it's just much needed for them. Splitting our love and attention four ways can become quite difficult at times so I cherish this time with them. We usually go to the grocery store and they pick out a special treat and then we go home and make whatever they wanted for dinner and then play a game or watch a movie. Jaeli is usually the easiest as she's very laid-back and always happy when she's by herself! We had a good night. Looking forward to next time!