Looking back years later

It’s been over three years since I’ve updated this blog, so I thought I’d write a quick recap post so the story doesn’t end so abruptly.

Soon after my last post in July 2013 – after my youngest turned 3 – I created a new private blog because my kids were getting older and I began feeling uncomfortable with having so many photos of them being public. My oldest was about to turn 7 and I decided that a private blog would continue to document our family’s journey, but also give my kids their privacy.

Now the boys are 9, 7 and 6 and although their growing up has changed the dynamics of our family – we now sleep through night (99 percent of the time) and there are no diapers or diaper bags! – there are always of course other issues and challenges that come up. But, although I will continue to keep those issues and challenges private, I decided to keep this blog public because the journey of having three young children so close in age may not have been an easy one, but it is sure is funny to read about years later.


August 14, 2016 at 4:00 pm Leave a comment

Love of reading

One of the things that I love to watch my kids doing is showing a love for books. There’s something amazing about Zachary discovering that he can read a whole chapter in an “I Can Read” book and Jadon proudly smiling after he reads a sign. Even Adam will pause for minutes at a time to sit and look through a book.

In fact, I recently discovered that Adam loves reading even more than I thought and realized how important the evening routine of reading a book before bed is to him.

A few nights ago, he fell asleep in the car on our way home from somewhere. It was around bedtime so we took of his shoes and put him in bed with his clothes on.

At about 4 a.m., he woke up screaming and crying. “Mommy!!!! I need you!!! Read me a book!!!!”

Hmmm… I thought maybe he had a bad dream and calmly told him, “It’s the middle of the night honey, we can read a book tomorrow.”

“No!!! It’s not time for bed, read me a book!!!”

I tried to reason with him a few more times. “Yes, we can read a book tomorrow.” “It’s dark outside, it’s time for sleeping,” etc.

“No, it’s not bedtime, read me a book!!”

I finally gave up, figuring that this situation was so odd it likely wouldn’t happen again and therefore I wouldn’t be setting any bad precedents. So I grabbed the closest book (luckily it happened to be a four-page board book) and he instantly stopped screaming and was ready to hear the story. We laid down together on the bed, I read it to him then he fell back to sleep shortly after.

July 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm Leave a comment

Flashback: From the classroom to the car

As I walked through the parking lot to pick up the two younger boys from preschool, I passed what appeared to be a new mom happily pushing her infant in a stroller toward her car. I didn’t see the baby’s face as we passed by each other but I did catch the baby’s little stocking feet as I said hello to his (I’m guessing from the blue stripes on the socks) mom.
All of I sudden I remembered pushing my oldest son in his little infant carrier along that same path more than five years ago. I’d go pick him up, kiss his little cheeks, gather his little bottles and soiled bibs, find out about his day from his teacher then strap him in the infant carrier and roll him to the car. Then it was as simple as open the door, snap the infant carrier in its holder in the backseat, fold up the stroller, put it in the back of the car and I’d be on my way.
Now more than five years later, I’m not picking up him at that school anymore, he’s in kindergarten at a school about 10 minutes away. And picking up my 4 year-old and 2-year-old doesn’t go quite that smoothly as it did in the infant days.
We’ve gone through the one baby in the stroller, one toddler toddling; and the one baby in the stroller, one toddling and one walking; and more recently, which was the most challenging, one toddling in one direction, one running in another direction and one not wanting to leave.
Here are some examples of how pick-up goes on some days:
The kids are on the playground and Adam doesn’t want to get off his bike and Jadon is ready to leave and is headed down the hallway to the front door.
Jadon wants to show me a piece of artwork in his class so we go to look at it, Adam finds a car in the classroom and doesn’t want to leave.
Adam is ready to leave and is headed down the hallway toward the front door (which he can open by himself) and Jadon is hiding in the nap room.
Jadon hides in a cabinet on the way out and Ron and two staff members spend nearly a half hour looking for him.
Somebody leaves the “For Staff Only” door open and Jadon spots the cupcakes sitting on the counter inside on our way out and decides that he has to have one. (They were incredibly cute – shaped like little cheeseburgers but was all cupcake and frosting).
But, I remind myself as I take a very deep breath, this too will pass. Some day I will treasure these half-hour journeys from the classroom to the car.

November 29, 2012 at 10:49 pm Leave a comment

Belated birthday post

Spiderman birthday ice cream cake

I haven’t posted much lately (besides the loose tooth post I just posted) because my mother-in-law was visiting for two weeks and she’s one of my only readers so she experienced everything firsthand.

But, I did want to mark the boys’ birthdays on the blog. Zachary turned 6 last month and Jadon turned 4.

On Aug. 19, we had a big birthday bash for both boys at Phoenix Gymnastics & Dance Academy. A superhero theme and it was super fun. An hour of gymnastics with a variety of activities – trampoline, foam pit, rope swinging, balance beam walking, a tunnel made up of mats and parachute songs.

Then the second hours was upstairs in a party room – pizza from King Solomon’s Pizza and a Spiderman ice cream cake.

Then on Monday, Aug. 20, Savta and I went to Zachary’s school to celebrate with his classmates. Yogurt cups with fruit and then Zachary gave Cars stickers to all the kids. Then on Tuesday, Aug. 21, Savta and I went to Jadon’s school for a birthday snack. Pancakes with yogurt and berries and whipped cream. Then each night we sang “Happy birthday” and had leftover ice cream cake.

My Aunt Fran from Henderson, Nev., also came to town for the birthday celebration – it was great to see her!

September 22, 2012 at 5:35 pm Leave a comment

Loose tooth

There’s been a lot of excitement here this past week – Zachary has his first loose tooth.

He told Ron a few days ago that his tooth hurt so Ron touched it and noticed it was loose. Wasn’t he just teething not too long ago – how did we reach this point so quickly?!

So he’s very excited about it – telling everyone we see: our friends, his teacher, his occupational therapist, a kid in the waiting room.

The latter conversation went like this:
Zachary: I have a loose tooth.
Kid: I’ve had about five already. (he was a little older).
Zachary: This is my first one.
Then the boy showed Zachary that it only looked like one came out because four had already grown in.

On the way home today, Zachary said from the back seat, “We share six pillows.”

“That’s true,” I said – we tend to do a lot of musical beds/pillows each week. “But what does that mean?”

“If I sleep with a different pillow each night, how will the tooth fairy know which pillow to look under?”

I told him that he should just tell us when he puts his tooth under his pillow and then we’ll know. Then I asked him what the tooth fairy does.

“She flies,” he said.

“And what does she do when you put your tooth under your pillow?”

“She brings you a gift.”

“What does she bring you?”

“A toothbrush.”

That makes perfect sense!

September 22, 2012 at 5:01 pm Leave a comment

Stop copying me!

Childhood is filled with multiple phases. The current phase is certainly one of the more annoying ones.

I’m thirsty. I’m thirsty. Can I have some water? Can I have some water? Are you copying me? Are you copying me? Stop copying me! Stop copying me! Stop it! Stop it! Mommy, Jadon is copying me. Mommy, Jadon is copying me! Stop it! Stop it! Stop copying me! Stop copying me!

Punch. Hit. Kick. Cry.


Is summer vacation over yet?

I tried to inject a little humor. I tell Zachary to say, “Zachary you’re so wonderful.” And then he does and Jadon copies him and they both laugh. But that’s wearing thin.

When they start copying me, I go with the “You’re the best mommy in the whole world. I’m going to clean up my all my toys now” and they tire of that quickly.

August 11, 2012 at 3:17 pm Leave a comment

The littlest one

Although Adam may be the smallest family member in stature, he is by no means the smallest in presence.

When he wants your attention, he lets out an extremely loud SCREEEEEECH!

When looking a book, he points out the characters or objects, and if you don’t respond, he turns up the volume.  “Dish” (pointing at a fish). “DISH, DISH DIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSH!” until you say, “Yes, that’s a fish.” “Li-ween” (pointing at a picture of Lightening McQueen). “Liween!” “LIIIIIWEEEN!!!!” “Yes, that’s Lightning McQueen.” You get the picture.

If he wants more of whatever he’s eating, he’ll sometimes say “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAR!” Then you ask, “Do you want more?” and he’ll respond quietly, “More please.”

If he wants to show me something, he’ll grab my hand and start pulling me to whatever it is (usually it deals with food). Sometimes he’ll just stand behind me and try pushing me there.

Occasionally he’ll look you in the eye and seriously say a sentence two, but the words are incomprehensible. Once in awhile, I’ll recognize a word or two: “bada bada bada boola Li-ween caw.”
Other times, his words are very clear. “Bada bada bada boola balloon.” “You want the balloon?” “Yes, I want balloon.”

Some other words: cewal (cereal), menini (Mean Jadon, who he calls Nini, if Jadon does something that upsets him. It’s said in staccato: ME Ni Ni!). Sometimes it’s Mimommy or Midaddy, if we’re the offenders.

One thing that has upset him a lot lately is changing his clothes. One day last weekend, he cried for nearly 20 minutes because I took off his dirty diaper and threw it away. He kept wanting to retrieve it from the diaper garbage can. Sometimes when I change him into his pajamas, he gets so angry, he takes them off, hunts down his dirty shirt and puts it back on.

Right now he’s napping. The house is very quiet.

August 11, 2012 at 3:15 pm Leave a comment

Peanut butter hugs and traveling solo

A walk around downtown Philly in the rain.

Yesterday Adam wanted a peanut butter sandwich for breakfast, but apparently it was really only the crunchy peanut butter he wanted because he picked it off and ate it, leaving him with peanut buttery fingers. And as I was getting ready to leave for work, he gave me a big hug before I could wash his hands.

Two mornings before that, about 1:30 a.m. actually, I woke up to a glass of water being poured over me. I woke up – with a shriek, also waking up Ron – to find Adam standing next to my bed with my glass in his hand. I must have startled him because then he sat down on the floor. I picked him up, carried him to his room, laid him back on his pillow and he fell right back asleep. I changed my clothes, laid a towel down on the bed and went back to sleep.

These are examples of experiences I didn’t have during my first trip without the children.

Last week, from Monday through Thursday, I attended a conference for the American Jewish Press Association. I was able to sit down and eat throughout an entire meal without having to clean up any messes. I could concentrate on whatever it was I was doing, whether it was a lecture, a discussion or a television show. I could complete a thought. I even slept through the night the first night after a day of traveling. (I had trouble sleeping the other two nights, however. I think it was because I was savoring having the time to myself, I didn’t want to waste it by sleeping. But I still made it downstairs on time because it really takes so much less time to get ready when you only have to worry about yourself).

By the time I got to the hotel Monday night, all the programming was finished and since I didn’t really know anybody there, I wouldn’t have recognized them in the lobby or hotel restaurant anyway. I took a little walk outside but then I realized I didn’t know whether or not it was a good neighborhood so I returned to my room and ordered room service and watched some family channel teen heartthrob season premiere then did some work.

The second night was a “Phree Night in Philadelphia,” and whoever wanted to loaded a chartered bus to head down to City Center in downtown Philadelphia. Not sure where everyone went but some went to a Cuban restaurant, some to a Mediterranean restaurant and seven of us decided to take a walk around town to see the sights, even though it was raining. (Thank you to the publisher who had the foresight to bring two umbrellas and she lent me one because at some points during our walk it was pouring). We saw the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and Delancy Street. We only had until 9 p.m. until the buses came to pick us up so after a couple people in our party, without umbrellas, were pretty drenched, we headed into Jones restaurant. It was SO good. I had a Cheese Where’s-the-Beef Burger, which was a slice of grilled cheese with all the fixin’s.
We finished up a little after the 9 p.m. deadline but being that three people in our group were the ones organizing the conference (and the busride), I wasn’t worried about being left behind.

Some people discussed having drinks in the hotel bar but all I could think about was that precious time to myself. I returned to my room, took a bath, did some reading and watched TV. I also had Internet service in my room and tried doing some work but I had so much trouble logging in and spent time on the phone with IT, that at about 11:30 p.m., I gave up and devoted the next couple hours to solely relaxing.

On the third night, two buses of conference participants headed back downtown to the National Museum of Jewish History and we had a tour of the meeting followed by the gala dinner where historian Jonathan Sarna was the keynote speaker. The balcony had a great view of Independence Square (I think that’s what it is called) and it was a wonderful evening. Our paper won one award (yea, Vicki!).

After returning to the hotel, I relished in my last evening of alone time. I didn’t even bother with an Internet connection this time, I just wrote a quick blog post about the award in the hotel’s business center then went upstairs to pack and watched “Friends.”

Yes, I did miss the kids. And yes, when Zachary told me over the phone. “Mommy, I miss you, come home now,” I did get a little teary-eyed. But it was only four days in 5 1/2 years that I had to myself so I didn’t feel too guilty. (I did feel a little guilty about leaving Ron home with them alone for those four days, but he did great!)

June 26, 2012 at 10:30 pm Leave a comment

New fashion statement for moms

I think I’ve  discovered the ultimate fashion statement for moms.

In the hurry to get out of the house this morning to get all three kids to school and attend a 9 a.m. volunteer breakfast followed by a mother’s day program, I myself got dressed as quickly as I could in between getting the kids ready.

I went to the breakfast (which was nice because that meant that I actually sat down and ate breakfast), chatted with some of the other moms then went to Jadon’s class for a space Mother’s Day program (because their moms are out of this world). Jadon and I both wore homemade astronaut helmets then raced balloon rockets, looked at pictured of planets through a telescope and made meteorites out of bunched up tinfoil and streamers. His teachers are so creative! 

When it was time to leave, I went to the front office to sign the kids in and noticed that my shoes felt uneven as I walked. I looked down to see that I was wearing two different kinds of sandals – one brown and one black.

I don’t know if anyone else noticed but it took me nearly two hours to realize it.

But being that I was around other moms (many who are likely also sleep-deprived) and kids (who often don’t recognize whether or not their shoes are on the wrong feet) the whole morning, maybe nobody else noticed.

May 11, 2012 at 11:55 am Leave a comment

Phases of words

The process of learning words is so amazing to me. In a span of five years, a child transitions from a newborn who communicates only by crying to a fairly articulate kid being able to express himself. It’s also fun to watch the different stages of communication.

Here are our three current stages:

Adam (20 months): He says a few words – primarily “bus” for every vehicle and “doggy” for every animal. But we’ve also heard: hi, bye, Mommy, Daddy, “Bye, Daddy,” more, mmmmm…. (when seeing food), dis (this), dat (that), ball, fish, mine, hago (here you go), baby and bird. And “ticka, ticka, ticka” when tickling someone.

I call this the “bus” stage because the other two went through it as well, when a bus passes by as we’re driving, he excitedly exclaims, “Bus! Bus! Bus!” (He does the same when sees a doggy through the window or from his stroller during a walk – “Doggy!!”

Since he doesn’t know very many words, he often gets frustrated if he can’t communicate what he wants. We try, handing him the different objects we think he’s asking for, but if it’s not what he wants, he gets frustrated and throws it, as if to say, “You fool, why would you think I wanted that? That’s not what I said!” But when we figure out what he wants, his face lights up with a big smile.

He is also sometimes able to communicate without words, such as when he says, “Mine, mine” and brings me a blanket, meaning “Please cover me with this blanket when I lie down.”

Jadon (3 years) is at the age where his sentences come out so cute. The other morning he sat in front of the floor heater and said, “Oh! This is taking the cold off of me!” He’ll hold some kind of new food – like the banana muffin I made earlier this week – and ask, “What does taste look like?” (meaning, what does this taste like?)

He doesn’t have much patience for Adam’s learning curve, as Ron witnessed last week. Adam (pointing at a truck): “Bus!” Jadon: “That’s not a bus, that’s a truck.” Adam (pointing at a bus): “Bus!” Jadon: “I know it’s a bus!”

It’s also fun to hear his thought process. At school today, he pointed to another kid’s Sponge Bob lunchbox. “We don’t have that toy,” he said. And soon after, he told me that he rode a horse.” Oh, you rode a horse?” I asked, “Where?” “And I rode a train.” “Oh yes, you rode the carousel (at the train park).” “Yes, but I don’t think the horses were real.”

And there are also the grown-up phrases he uses that sound so cute coming out of his mouth, like “I don’t think that’s a good idea.” (In response to statements like, “OK, guys, time to go upstairs and take a bath.”)

Then there’s Zachary, 5, who is really beginning to explore words. If we come across a word he’s not familiar with when we’re reading a book or watching a movie, he asks what it means. He is also having fun rhyming words and changing a letter to make up a new word, which cracks him up. A few months ago, he’d get excited whenever he sees a word that starts with a Z: “Like my name!” he’d say, although he doesn’t do that as often.

It’s also fun to watch Zachary and Jadon interact and have conversations. I can’t think of any one in particular right now, but it is really sweet.

January 22, 2012 at 12:53 am Leave a comment

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