Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Apples And Trees. Or Maybe It Should Be Nut And Tree

Usually we only like to see our positive, healthy character traits passed along to our children. You know, the ones you could not have possibly nurtured into them. I'm talking about the "nature" ones or whatever educators/researchers are calling them these days.

I normally attempt to deny my genetic influence on the bad or super-quirky stuff that is already pouring out of my kids, but sometimes, just sometimes, I have to take responsibility. The following event was one of those...

After the crumbgobblers go to bed (and they are STILL crumbgobbling), John and I get some time just with Ainsley and it is fun. Several evenings ago we were sidewalk-chalking and John started just rubbing the side of his chalk on the driveway - as if he was coloring the entire thing in. This is what it looked like (the pink rectangle part):

I was getting tense. You see, in my crazy-world he was unnecessarily using chalk and the pink chalk at that. Just throw it away if you're going to do something like that. I didn't say anything, though, because somewhere in my irrational mind I knew it was ridiculous of me to get fired up about...chalk. As I was inwardly talking myself down from the cliff of anxiety (about chalk), Ainsley said "Daddy, what are you doing?".
John: "I don't know. Just coloring."
Ainsley: "Daddy, you're wasting chalk."
John: Well, he just looked at me. And stopped wasting chalk.

That's my girl.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Note To Self


Plus This: (and he KNOWS he is not allowed on the table)

Equals Potential Disaster.

Especially When This:

Was Really In This:

And we have no idea how much water was in the cup.

We are soooooo lucky the spill/pour was discovered immediately and his dad was on it like stink on poop. After a couple days of drying, we are back and the laptop will never again be on the table.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

Baby, thank you for everything, everything, everything. The kiddos and I desperately adore and love you and are beyond thankful you love us, even when we're all a-yellin' and a-hollerin' and driving you to crazy-town. Perhaps next year they won't wake up before 6:00 to celebrate your day and perhaps next year you'll have something better than Sister Schubert's and Folgers for b-fast and ice cream for dessert. Don't count on it, though. I love you, sweetie.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Success At The Zoo

I'm talking about a real zoo - not our house. My sister and I met up there with all the kiddos last week and it went surprisingly well, even when what I dreaded most ended up happening.

This is the deal: I'm not that afraid of attempting fun little outings, on my own, with all four kids. I even considered going to the zoo by myself with them the previous week, but chickened out because of my only fear - that Ainsley would have to go to the bathroom (highly likely) and how-in-the-world would I get the wagon inside a restroom in order to avoid public urination. Our zoo is pretty big and old and the bathrooms were not designed to handle the choo-choo. I also trust no one, not even your grandmother, so asking a stranger to stand outside with the three while I ducked inside with Ainlsey would NEVER happen. I would rather find some bushes for her to use first.

So I jumped at my sister's suggestion for an outing and it was fun. I don't get to hang out with Trish and her kids often enough and Ainsley thinks the sun rises and sets on her older cousin. Plus, Trish's twins (you read that correctly) are only 10 months younger than the Big Three and I think it is going to be fun watching them grow up together.

A pic of all of us eating lunch. It was 100% ridiculous trying to find a table and 5 high chairs. I hadn't thought of that...and since we were on a balcony I couldn't back up any further to get that great of a shot. Notice the lady at the next table staring. Classic.

We eventually had to split because of afternoon commitments and not 4 minutes after saying good-bye at the giraffes and 5 minutes after I had asked the "do you have to go potty" question, I got the "Mommy, I really have to go potty". Seriously. My sister and her crew long gone, we walked around in search of a bathroom and I prayed it would somehow work out. Maybe I could ask a zoo worker to watch the triplets scream while I took Ainsley in (my insane mind "rationalized" that if something horrific happened to my babies there would be an organization I could go all-levels-of-crazy-on). No zoo workers present. Maybe she could hold it? "No, I have to go now." Maybe...oh man. It will work out. It will all work out. And it did. Not perfectly, of course, but we survived. There was an ancient handicapped restroom near the bird house and I was able to pull the wagon straight in, block all the stalls with it (and did not care), find relief for A, and then pull the wagon back out the way we came. The three totally flipped out over the hand-dryers and the whole thing was completely unsanitary, but it was fine. Add the zoo to our list of activities.

I did notice that the monkey house at our zoo was much, much cleaner and neater (albeit smellier) than Chez Laird...

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Little Embarrassed (Not Much, But Enough)

You see, I have these sandals.

They have been part of my life for 11 years now and I love them. They have been worn to oodles of track/cross country practices and meets. They have been immersed in the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic, plunged into the icy waters of the Arkansas, Colorado, and Blue Rivers (and I can't remember the others), and splashed in who-knows-how-many puddles. Dirt from countless mountains and cities in the great state of Colorado has been washed off of them. They have witnessed the beauty of Tahoe, the Grand Canyon, Moab and the mountains of North Carolina. Miles and miles of memories are recorded on these things and I am going to have to part with them.

Why? The soles are falling apart. And to be honest, the foot bed is cracked as well, making them irreparable (I checked the company's website). I wasn't as bothered by my tackiness last year because last year I was going a little kooky with 4 kids ages 3 and under and had bigger things to worry about. This year I still wasn't that moved to purchase replacements because of my attachment issues with these, my beloved footwear. Then I went to the zoo last week with my sister and her kids (post and pics sometime in the future) and a wood chip got stuck in the crack in the bottom of my left sandal. It was then, as I was tugging out a sizable hunk of nature from the sole, that I admitted defeat. Mark my words, sometime in the next couple months I won't be an embarrassment any longer and buy new shoes.

Sandals w/out wood chip.

Sandals with wood chip.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Please Sir, I Want Some More

The youngest three behave as if they are starving. Perpetual mooches, it is rare when we are eating that someone doesn't hover around, begging for food. We give in, of course, and sometimes all three then descend upon us like little birds with their beaks open. This happened again last night when they devoured Ainsley's unfinished pasta and about 1/4 of my dinner as well (Gracie even liked the caesar salad).

Evidence of our little Olivers:

Sunday, June 7, 2009


I consider myself fortunate that I did not read any blogs focused on infertility during our 5 1/2 years of waiting for Ainsley. Rather than giving me comfort that other people had the same struggles, their words would have brought more of the pain I was finally handling by the time we got pregnant.

However, when we discovered we were pregnant with triplets, John and I started exploring triplet blogs in the hopes of gleaning knowledge about what our pregnancy and [hopefully] infant road would look like. It was a bit scary to read sometimes because lots of triplet pregnancies end up with insane bedrest/early hospitalization/use of lots of tocolytics, but we found solace that most everyone handles the triplet experience - all of it - without completely losing their mind...even when there is tragedy.

That said, since most of the triplet mamas had gone through infertility treatments and had documented their sometimes painful journey, I noticed in their posts a lot of acronyms I was completely clueless about. Parts of these online journals were completely incoherent to me and it took some time to learn what the heck these people were talking about.

So, I've listed some below. I don't do this because I think it's important for anyone else to know these things, because I don't. I do this because John and I lived on the infertility planet for a long time and this is a part of our story I don't want to forget.

I haven't listed all of them for three reasons:
1. Some of them are 100% irrelevant for what we went through.
2. Some of them are sort of gross (bad images that will never go away from your mind).
3. Some of them I still don't get (lots of the hyper-medical terminology/drugs)

Without further adieu:
2WW = 2-Week Wait (the agonizing time between procedure and hCG tests - see below)*

AI = Artificial Insemination
AO = Anovulation
ART = Assisted Reproductive Technology
AWOL = A Woman On Lupron (a very scary person - do not cross her)

BCP = Birth Control Pills
BFN = Big Fat Negative (pregnancy test results)
BFP = Big Fat Positive (see above)
BW, b/w = Bloodwork (and there's lots of it)
C# = Cycle Number
CB = Cycle Buddy
CD = Cycle Day

DPO = Days Post-Ovulation
DPR = Days Post-Retrieval (of eggs)
DPT = Days Post-Transfer (of embryos)
DP3DT = Days Post 3-Day Transfer (3-day-old embryos)
DP3DT = Days Post 5-Day Transfer (5-day-old embryos)
E2 = Estradiol (hormone)
EDD = Estimated Due Date
ER = Egg Retrieval
ET = Embryo Transfer

FET = Frozen Embryo Transfer
FF = Fertility Friend

GIFT = Gamete Intra-fallopian Transfer (essentially put egg and sperm separately in the fallopian tubes and let them have a party)

hCG, HCG = Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (the hormone pregnancy tests measure - you have to go in for two blood tests measuring your levels after the 2WW to see if you're pg. The worst is when the first test says you aren't and you have to go back 2 days later for another blood draw to find out - again - that you still aren't pg. Twisting the knife.)

IF = Infertility
IM = Intra-muscular (WRT injections) [These are not pleasant, but entertaining. John and I call it "butt darts" b/c you hold the syringe just like a dart]
IUI = Intra-uterine Insemination (one of the first levels of IF treatments people do)

LH = Luteinizing Hormone
LMP = Last Menstrual Period (start date)

LP = Luteal Phase (the critical days post-ovulation)
LPD = Luteal Phase Defect

MC, m/c, misc. = Miscarriage
MF = Male Factor (I must admit this is NOT what I thought it was for a long time...umm...hmm)
O, OV = Ovulation
OD = Ovulatory Dysfunction (an umbrella diagnosis for many infertiles)
OHSS = Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (not good - potentially very dangerous situation and usually results in hospitalization)
OPT = Ovulation Predictor Test
P4 = Progesterone (hormone)
PCO = Polycystic Ovaries
PCOS = Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
POAS = Pee On A Stick (taking a home pg test)
RE = Reproductive Endocrinologist (I seriously had no idea my doc was called this - so clueless)
RPL = Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

SI = Secondary Infertility (easily get pg for first kid, then can't for the second)
SMEP = Sperm Meets Egg Plan

TTC = Trying to Conceive

US, u/s = Ultrasound (there are LOTS of these done and not the fun kind.)

* Everything in parenthesis is from me.

That's about it. Consider yourselves equipped to figure out what in the world those people are saying. Good luck.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

You Know You're Addicted To Caffeine When...

1. Your friends think it's funny that you can't make a decision until after the first cuppa.
2. And you can't (see above).
3. You think about your next fix all day and agonize over whether to have hot or iced coffee, or be good and use skim or steal the crumbgobblers' 2% milk. BTW, I know they are not "2" yet and should technically still drink whole milk, but since they are...umm...certainly not wasting away, it was off-handedly suggested by the pediatrician to switch early.
4. You give up soda (again), and it was awful and I still crave the bubbly wonderfulness every afternoon. Of course, it has been replaced by another cup of coffee.
5. You know H2O is better for you and will nearly have the same "wake up" effect, but you would rather risk stained teeth.
6. Your husband was wonderful and surprised you with a mocha, and it accidentally spilled on the carpet, forever staining it, and you didn't care a bit about the carpet but teared up because of the loss of the perfect chocolate/espresso combination.


Monday, June 1, 2009

Did Not Rise To The Occasion

John was out of town this past weekend on his annual and well-deserved weekend with the boys from undergrad. Obviously this left me by myself with the wee ones and, while I was excited for John to get away, I was selfishly not excited too. I live for weekends. Having an extra pair of hands around here makes the place almost serene and we usually have a great time with the kids. I had dreaded this weekend for months.

Friday started well and ended poorly. It went something like this:
1. Everyone up by 6:30 (normal)
2. Ainsley went to a friend's house to play and I brought the babies home and put them straight to bed. It was wonderful.
3. From there, we went downhill. The trio did not appreciate Target. All of them attempted to climb out of the stroller/cart to attack the toy section which is evilly placed near household cleaning items. Not cool.
4. On Fridays we go to my parents' house after 2nd nap. We made it there pretty well and the littlest ones decided they did not feel like cooperating. They did not eat. They did not want to play. They did not want to be anywhere but with me or (thankfully!) my mom. In the meantime, I was trying to get Ainsley fed and feel like she wasn't completely abandoned.
6. This was actually manageable until we started to leave. Everyone was melting. I left their house 1/2-hr after bedtime and they reminded me all the way home. I get 75% of the kids unloaded (they are still jawing at me) and finally get Lizzy in, who proceeds to vomit all over the place. Her womb-mates raced to step all over it to get to me and no one was happy. The evening was saved by awesome-friend-Joan who called, heard the ruckus in the background, and immediately came over with SuperBabysitter to subject themselves to more screaming as they helped me get everyone to bed.

The good news? There wasn't a peep from the Fearsome Four all night...until everyone decided to wake up at 6:00 a.m. The rest of the weekend was the same mix of fun and awfulness, especially Sunday morning.

But John was wonderfully home by 1:30, ready to jump in the fray, and it took a lot for me to not shove the kids aside to beat them to him as his car pulled in the drive.

So why was I mildly disappointed in myself? Because I whined and complained to most everyone. Because John had to hear screaming in the background when he called and listen to a tired wife when he needed to relax. Because I didn't follow my usual "advice" to people and suck-it-up - calling in babysitters and friends to help (thank you, everyone!).

It was a pretty humbling weekend, all-in-all.

Next year's trip with the guys will be better, right?