Monday, December 29, 2008

"Wow, FOUR girls?"

I just got back from Costco with the girls and have figured out how I'm going to pay for four weddings. I 'm going to tell every stranger who says "Wow, FOUR girls! Start saving for those weddings!" to fork over a nickle. In twenty years I'll have more than enough to pay for four princess dream weddings.

Any suggestions with witty responses? Please post in the Comments! I know everyone means well, but it's getting old. I also need a reply for "your poor husband". That one really gets to me especially when the girls are standing right there. Rick LOVES having four girls and I'm sick of telling everyone how much their dad loves his girls and how blessed we are to have these four unique beautiful children.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


We had a lot of fun at Disneyland on our trip to California before Christmas. Rick and I took Sophia and Ella while Ceci and Katie stayed with their grandparents in Temecula.

We saw lots of characters including all the "major" princesses.

We waited thirty minutes to see Tinkerbell and I was expecting her to be a perking twenty-something aspiring Disney actress but instead we got a slightly older looking frumpy fairy. Sophia tried to open the door to her "house", but was dismayed to find out it was just a fake door.

Rick had his heart set on staying to watch the Christmas Parade which started at 7pm. After spending the entire day walking around the park the girls were on the verge of a meltdown and we snuck inside the line where there was an opening next to a mostly empty blanket. Turns out that family was shopping while the dad was saving the spot and when the mom returned she was VERY unhappy that her husband had let us sneak in and Sophia and Ella had no qualms about spreading out although they had zero interest in the parade that Rick was INSISTING we all ENJOY. We just pretended to be clueless and not notice the friction we had caused in their family vacation. Rick has romantic memories of watching nighttime parades at Disney but our girls were tired and hungry...actually so was mom. We sat there for 30 mintues until the parade reached us and everyone decided it was lame and bailed.

I got a bit ugly with the facepainters earlier in the day and made one of those scenes that embarrassed the girls as well as Rick. There was a new facepainter who was obviously on her first day and I think Ella was her first actual face to paint. We asked for a simple flower which ended up looking like Ella had done it herself without a mirror. Lots of black smudges and to say it was messy is an understatement. The master facepainter acted like she didn't quite understand why I was unhappy with the $15 black mess her apprentice had spent 1o long, painful minutes painting on Ella's cheek. So....she offered to redo it herself, but when they tried to wash off the black it wouldn't come off and was just a big black smudge on Ella's cheek so they made a "pink background" and a bunch of butterflies. Sophia of course wanted the same.

A couple more highlights:

Character dinner after the parade. I was happy for a big glass of wine while the girls couldn't believe it was the real Minnie Mouse.

Monday, December 22, 2008

U Club Party

Each Christmas we go to the family party at the University Club to, among other Christmas-y activities, see Santa. Sophia was studying pictures of Santas past that I bring out at Christmas and she pointed out which Santas were "fake" and which were "real".

"I can tell by the beard. The big curly beard is DEFINITELY fake. The real beard must be the real Santa".

So I explained to her that Santa has helpers who do know him and report back what the children ask for. She seemed to be ok with that. She told me that if it was not a real Santa she would still act like he was real and not let on that she knew he wasn't the real deal.

The Santa this year was "real" fortunately.

Last year Rick and I had to jump in the shot at the last minute when Ella started melting down:

They had a menagerie of animals that Katie and Ceci were obsessed with. They saw the sheep and started yelling "BAA! BAA!" I think the animals were all a bit frightened but the girls were not intimidated in the least. Katie even tried scaling the fence to get inside and play with her animal friends.
Here they are "petting" the monkey. It was more like "squeezing" they were so excited. I kept having to say "gentle...gentle":
And a little too close for comfort with a turkey:
There was a cookie decorating station where I realized Katie was taking scoops of sprinkles and putting the spoon in her mouth and eating them straight:

And what would a Christmas party be without face painting? Ella got a Christmas tree and Sophia went with the popular Christmas unicorn:

Friday, December 19, 2008

the Next Chapter

It has been an eventful two weeks. The whole family went to California and had a great time in the mostly warm weather playing with cousins and visiting Disneyland and Legoland. The flights were actually manageable which is always the wildcard with four under 6yrs old.

The night we returned I got a call from my boss giving me a heads-up that I would be part of yet another wave of layoffs the next morning. Now I am all of a sudden a stay-at-home mom to my girls and after next week will not have the help of our wonderful nanny or house cleaner.

The blog will become more interesting I am sure. My dear friend who also happens to be a successful financial business owner and mom to twins, Shauna, called to tell me she has a Plan B for me. I was anxiously listening to the job opportunity she was going to hit me with when she said she was laughing to herself at the thought of me home with my girls all day long and thought I should have a reality show about an Investment Banking Director turned stay-at-home mom. Not so helpful Shauna.

I'm looking forward to the ups and downs of being at home and actually enjoying Christmas this year since I don't have to work on the 24th and 26th. I don't miss the 4:30am alarm or walk in the dark and cold to the train. For now I'm going to enjoy this time with my girls and try to stop dust and dirt from taking over our house.

I've got loads of pictures from California and stories to share...when I have a minute.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Christmas Show

Last night was Ella's preschool Christmas Extravaganza. She did a great job and all the kids looked adorable in their Christmas best. She loved being on stage and waving to us. Rick is out of town so my mom thankfully came to help me. The twins were bouncing around the gym before and after the program and I don't think I could have physically done it alone. They were like the wrong sides of two magnets repelling each other. They kept running in opposite directions and each got knocked to the floor multiple times by slightly older kids also sprinting around the gym. They kept grabbing cookies and pretzels from the treat table. My mom said that at one point Katie ran into the hallway where there is a large tree and she one by one lifted up baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph and examined each of their faces then replaced them in the creche. Sophia had fun being one of the big kids and hanging out with her Kindergarten friends.

Once the program began Katie and Ceci pushed their way up front and stood watching intently the whole performance. They were jumping up and down for Ella. I think they thought they were at a rock concert and their sister was the star.

Watching Ella up on stage I had a flashback to Sophia's first Christmas show in 2006. I don't remember much from that holiday season when I had newborn twins, an 18 month old and a 3 year old. Memories mostly return in flashbacks as if I spent 3 months on LSD and just get flashes of things that I think happened but am not altogether sure they actually did.

I do have photographic evidence of Sophia's show though to document one of those times when I felt like I was failing miserably as a mom. She came home from school the day of their show and told me they were supposed to wear their Halloween costumes that evening. I assured her that was not the case but she was pretty insistent that Ms Jones had told them to wear their costumes. I completely ignored her pleadings and put her in what I thought was a very cute pink sweater, brown corduroy skirt and knee high brown boots. As we walked into the gym and I saw one little girl after another in their Christmas dresses and patent leather maryjanes I realized that Sophia had been told to "dress up" which to her meant in costume. So...I sat there watching her in her Fall outfit in a sea of red dresses and felt terrible. Why didn't I stop for a minute and consider that she was trying to send me a message that they were to wear something special? All the blood intended for brain activity had been used by my milk ducts and I could not believe it hadn't occurred to me to put her in that beautiful red smocked Christmas dress hanging in her closet. I am sure that there were also multiple sheets sent home reminding responsible parents to, of course, dress their children in their CHRISTMAS outfits for the CHRISTMAS show. Sophia didn't notice or care. It was just her sleep deprived, unshowered crazy mama tearing up in the audience at her own ineptitude.

Here's one of Ceci and Katie I came across from the same week. Just posting because it seems like a hundred years ago that they were this little. The baby days with them are a total blur.

Monday, December 1, 2008

So Much to be Thankful for

We had a lovely Thanksgiving at my parents. Now that we don't have to worry about Katie and Ceci falling down the stairs or eating a limoges fruit basket, holidays have become more enjoyable for me and Rick. The downside is that they roam pretty much unsupervised when they declare themselves "alllllll done" and we are just starting our meals. Every time we come for dinner we leave their beautiful apartment in shambles.

Aunt Bobby knit adorable reindeer hats with jingle bells that the little kids did not want to take off.

We were happy to have the whole family there and get to play with cousin Henry again.