Monthly Archives: April 2014

Catching up on the chaos

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My posts have been few and far between the past couple months partly because our little climbers have kept me on my toes. Here are just a few examples of the recent chaos.

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Climbing in the kitchen drawers is nothing new for these two, but they started climbing in and just hanging out in the drawers. I have a photo somewhere of Little Sister “reading” a book in a drawer. At least they can entertain themselves while I cook or clean in the kitchen.

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The twins seem to enjoy spending time in cramped quarters. Maybe it reminds them of life in the womb. Who knows. Here they are inside cubbies in our game room.

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All of our children have been fascinated with rocks as toddlers, but this is the first time we have had a gravel driveway with toddlers. We have to watch them closely because they will put rocks in their mouths.

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I went to get the twins after their nap one day, and Sissy had somehow turned her shirt inside out and put it back on. Another day, she must not have liked how I dressed her because she took her shirt off repeatedly until I changed her clothes.

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Both girls enjoy climbing onto the chest at the foot of our bed and then climbing onto our bed.

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So far, Sissy is the only one who has climbed up and stood on the play kitchen.

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Both girls climbed onto the same shelf inside one of my kitchen cabinets, and they seemed to enjoy the tight space again.

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Sissy climbs up into her booster seat and just sits there. Sometimes she’s hungry, but other times, I think she just likes to climb.

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A rare photo of both girls hugging. It’s usually Little Sister hugging Sissy, but every now and then Sissy will hug her back. Sissy gives great hugs to others, squeezing our necks, but I think she wants to be the initiator instead of the receiver.

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Sissy climbed onto the dining table while I was cooking dinner one evening. Another evening, Sissy opened the front door, and both girls walked out to the driveway to meet Grandmother, who was coming up for dinner. It’s a good thing we don’t live in a subdivision anymore.

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I had gone to change Sissy’s diaper. When I returned to the kitchen, Little Sister was standing on the table, playing with some game pieces.

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Little Sister really likes worms and caterpillars and will carry them around until she squishes them or loses them.

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Sissy found a pencil that one of the big kids left out, and she drew on a wall in the living room. I am pretty sure the older two never did that, so this was a first.

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Little Sister climbed onto a glass-topped patio table down behind her grandparents’ house this afternoon. It was not as sturdy as the other tables, so this was the best photo I could manage while trying to keep her from falling.

There are so many other little chaotic moments that I have failed to photograph, but this gives you an idea of how I spend my days. Please pray for the babies’ safety and my sanity!

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New landscaping

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We moved into our new house last summer, but we didn’t have our builder install any landscaping because Hubby likes to do it all himself (with a little help from me and the kids). With the ongoing drought in our area, we didn’t want to plant anything in the heat of the summer, so we waited until this spring, and then we bought all native plants that are drought-resistant. Here is a photo of the front of our house before we got started.

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We had some rock delivered and worked on the border and placed a few boulders where we wanted them. I forgot to take a picture of this step, but you can see the rocks in the background of this photo of Big Sister flying her kite in our front yard.

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We also moved our metal bench into the bed in front of our porch. The kids had a lot of fun on the bench after we moved it from the front porch.

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Hubby sprayed RoundUp to kill the weeds and grass in the beds, and then waited a few days before he tilled inside the beds and filled them with a landscaping mix.

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The weather wasn’t always cooperative during this project. The girls are watching the rain in this photo taken after hubby ran out of soil.

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After all this prep work, we were anxious to get some plants. We researched which plants would do well and figured out which of those we liked, and then I sketched the beds and jotted down where we wanted to place each plant. We went to a local nursery and were surprised that they had so many native plants. It has been almost seven years since we landscaped the last house we owned, and the nursery has greatly expanded its selections since then. Big Brother went with us and helped unload the plants once we got home.

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Big Sister helped by watering the plants after we arranged them where we wanted them. We waited until the next morning to put the plants in the ground.

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That’s a lot of landscaping! We spent most of the next day planting what we had bought. The kids were great helpers. Hubby had to go back to the nursery to buy a few more plants after we saw what else we needed.

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As you can see, we planted beds from our driveway to the fence on the opposite side of the house. Here is a photo of the beds on the west side with our garden beds in the background.

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Here is a shot of the front beds from a different angle, showing where we placed the bench with flagstone in front of it.

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Hubby started on the bed on the other side of our driveway, but he had to dig out some dirt for the beginning of the dry creek bed, and those rocks are heavier than they look. Plus, he had to put mulch in all the beds, so he ran out of daylight. He got it started though.

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One day about a week later, the twins wanted to stay outside all morning, so I thought I would be productive and work on the dry creek bed. I had some help from the twins. They love rocks!

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By the time Hubby got home from work, I had used all the rocks in the big bag and almost finished the creek bed. The twins were awesome and played outside most of the day, only going inside for lunch and a nap. Grandmother was outside working in their garden that afternoon, and Sissy decided to walk down there by herself. She went right through the gate into their garden, gave Grandmother a hug, and then walked back out! Here is an “after” photo of my hard work.

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I found this metal trellis at a local trades days event, and we plan to have a vine grow on it, but Hubby left for three weeks soon after I brought this home. Now that he is home, he has a long “honey do list” to complete.

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Hubby got another load of rocks and finished the dry creek bed next to the driveway. Our plans for this bed are to use native plants that do well in the shade and then to fill in with mulch. We used smaller river rock to make three small dry creek beds in the front beds where the gutter spouts are. I haven’t taken a photo of those yet. In fact, I don’t think I have an “after” picture of our house either. I’ll add one soon, and I’ll post photos of the bed along the driveway once we finish it.

In case you are wondering what plants we chose for our beds, here is a list of the ones I can recall.
yucca
knockout rose
Texas mountain laurel
pink muhly grass
rosemary
abelia
lantana
verbena
salvia
iris
daffodil
loropetalum
fall asters

Fun in the sun

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These girls love being outside. When they are both fussing or bored or whatever, we can just mention going outside, and they run to the door in a better mood. I bought sunscreen and sunglasses for them a few weeks ago, but they wouldn’t wear the sunglasses. They left the sunglasses on for several minutes today. I think they will get used to them in the next few weeks. Here are some individual shots of them in their “sunglasses”.

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You can see behind Little Sister our unfinished landscaping. The river rock will be a dry creek bed running through mulch and shade plants (instead of weeds) when we are finished. We landscaped the beds in front of our house about a month ago, and then hubby went out of town for three weeks. I’m sure we will finish this bed soon now that he’s home. I’ll post separately with photos of our landscaping.

We’re all about chaos this morning!

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I should have taken more pictures to show you the chaos, but there was no time for pictures earlier this morning. Hubby and I woke up at 5:00 am as usual to work out and get ready before the kids woke up. Big Sister woke up at 6:40 while Hubby was still working out and just before I hopped in the shower. Not a big deal, but it did slow me down a bit, and I just found several pictures of my shirt that Big Sister took with my phone while I was in the shower, and I thought I wouldn’t have enough photos for this post!

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I had dressed and just started on my makeup when I heard a baby fussing. They usually sleep until 7:45 or 8:00, so I usually have plenty of time to get the older two fed and packed for school before needing to feed the babies. It was only 7:10, and Big Sister was eating breakfast, but nothing else was done. Big Sister was supposed to take a plant (fruit or vegetable) to school today to share with her class because they have been studying about plants and seeds this week. She wanted to take corn. I tried to talk her into taking something that didn’t need to be cooked, but she was set on corn. I put the pot on the stove to cook while I got the babies and started feeding them some milk in the game room and forgot about the corn. Hubby got finished getting ready and asked what was burning. Oops. He cooked some more corn for her to take. Meanwhile, lunches are being packed, babies’ diapers and clothes are being changed, and a little rock/glass stone from Big Brother’s collection ended up on the kitchen floor broken into two pieces.

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The big kids went out to the truck, and I was telling Hubby goodbye when I looked down and saw blood smeared on the floor and found the small pieces of rock/glass in Little Sister’s hand. I washed her hands and found a cut on her thumb. Do you know hard it is to stop bleeding on a wiggling toddler? I thought I had it stopped after holding a paper towel on it while distracting her with my phone and walking around with her, but she started using her thumb, and it started bleeding again. I finally resorted to using half of a bandaid, but she kept putting it in her mouth, and I’m pretty sure blood soaked through the bandaid, but it did stop the bleeding after a few minutes. I finally ate my breakfast while holding a fussy baby, changed another dirty diaper, and then went to the restroom. When I came out, this is what I found.

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I had thrown our sheets in the washer before my shower, so our bed wasn't made, and the pillow shams were on the chest at the foot of the bed. They had pulled the pillows into the floor, Sissy was climbing on the chest to get on the bed, and Little Sister was having a ball crawling all over the pillows on the floor. I may have to start locking them out of our bedroom when I go to the restroom. A couple of days ago, I came out and found Sissy dancing around on top of our bed. She was so happy, but I don't want her to fall off and get hurt. After taking photos of this chaos, I folded a load of clothes that I had washed last night while the babies ran off with the laundry basket. I found them in the kitchen having a great time playing in the basket together.

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One nice thing about twins is the basket won't turn over as easily, since the weight is distributed more equally than when Big Brother used to play in the basket by himself. It's a good thing he's so tough. This all happened before 9:00 this morning, and somehow I managed to write this post on my phone while feeding the babies and then holding them until they were happy enough to play for a few minutes. I’m ready for a nap!

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