Sometimes It's hard.

Being mom is hard these days.

I feel like each of the girls is at a very difficult age.
13, the edge of something huge, but not yet there, the cusp of womanhood, but still in so many ways a little girl.
9 (in a few weeks), another edge, just about to leave the dream world , falling with a thud to earth.
3.5, in the middle of the hardest year before 9. So terrible, that the parenting books and blogs lie and tell you that 2 is the worst, they totally skip telling you that 3 is worse than the "terrible twos".
15 months. She wants to be big like her sisters. I want her to be a baby still. She's testing her independence and I just want to pull her close.

It's hard to parent each of these ages and stages. To keep it as fair as possible. To give consequences to actions (good and bad) without making the other girls feel that we're being unjust.

Sometimes I just send everyone to their room. Sometimes it's because they need a time out. More often it's because I need a time out.

Yet, I love them all, so very much, and I wouldn't change them at all.

Some days they are all wonderful people. Some days I want to pause our life and freeze these little people, slow them down before they are off and away.


It's quiet at the moment. Though last night was anything but.
Natalie woke at a bit before 10, crying uncontrollably. Sometimes this means she needs to go pee. But that didn't stop her fit. In fact it lasted 45 minutes.
At the end she collapsed into my bed, face puffy from crying so hard. Abi was snuggled on my left, Natalie sleep sobbing on my right as I fell into sleep.

It was the end of another very long day.
This deployment has been really rough on us. It's a short one, and sometimes that makes it harder. Not enough time to get into a routine. And not short enough for us to not be in a routine.

Natalie is missing her daddy terribly. She looks for him out of the window, thinking that every car she hears will be him.

The older two have been through this, they know he'll be home soon. But it's difficult for Natalie to understand.

I need a moment to myself, but it doesn't happen. By the end of each day I feel so tightly wound that I snap at the kids. The nightly storms we've been having mirror how I feel inside.

Less than 2 weeks to go. Right before he left, I told him this one would be hard, because living here, I've come to rely on him so much more. I enjoy his company, I like how our life runs. This is exactly how it should be.


14 Months old Abby

Dear Abby,

You are 14 months old.

You can walk, but its more like a weird high-stepping waddle. I love watching you walk. But I loved watching you scoot just as much. I do like being able to stand you up while I go to the bathroom and you just stand there for a moment. Makes life easier.

You love to climb. On. Everything. You aren't very sturdy which makes this, as a young Rhayn would have said, "damerous". Watching you climb and explore the world is really neat.

You have 6 teeth and love food. Though there are many things you can't eat with only 6 teeth. You try to eat everything.

Today you have a bad rash. I'm not sure if its eczema or heat rash. We were at the girls' school, hanging out while we had a meeting for the "parent, teacher, volunteer group" (not a PTA but like that). The principal came over and we were talking to her. I was holding you and you were trying to pull your shirt off. I lifted your shirt and saw that the little eczema-like rash you'd had for weeks was covering your back and you were trying to pull your skin off. I took your shirt off and as you pinched your back, you were covered in goosebumps. It got worse because we couldn't come home immediately. But its looking better now that you are cooling off.

You've finally started having an opinion about things, like being up in a carrier, which you love most of the time. You have a special doll that you love, one that I made. And that makes me really happy.

It is so much fun watching you grow and develop.

Thank you so much, for adding your love to our family.




There are times when I'm totally shocked that I have four girls. I mean really... Four. 1,2,3,4 girls. How did that happen? Really I know how it happened. But 4?!

I will likely always feel sad that I don't have a little boy. My boy, my son. It sounds weird to think of having one at the same time.

My girls are all so very different. And none (so far) is very girly. I'm grateful for that. Though I have to remind myself that Rhayn used to love everything princess, sparkly and pink.

I wonder what Abby will be like in a year or two. She loves baby dolls right now, she will crawl over and grab her baby and then wants me to hold it while I hold her. Its really cute, especially since they are both bald headed. She still seems such a baby to me, perhaps because she has no hair and can't/won't walk? Her pudgy little legs are adorable. And I hate that the baby newsletters I am getting in my email weekly call her a toddler now. No. Nope, not a toddler. A baby, my baby, my sweet little cuddle monkey.

Natalie likes dresses and princesses. Mostly Elsa. She likes to look pretty, and is adorable even with her super short pixie cut. Her eyes are so big that this haircut just highlights them. Really its the perfect hairstyle for her.

Gwen is squeamish, she doesn't like bugs, or anything like that (and Natalie is picking that up from her). Recently she's started wanting to be a hairdresser when she grows up and likes to brush my hair (though she still dislikes taking care of her own).

Rhayn likes to wear make-up and wants to look just. so. when she goes out. She's 13, and that freaks me out all of the time. But she's also a really great kid, most of the time.

These girls are amazing people. I only hope that I am raising them the best way possible.
These girls.
My girls. 


I'm sick. Again.
We've been sick so much this last year that I'm starting to wonder if I should quarantine the house.

Rhayn has one of her bffs over for the week. It's all fine and dandy. Except that I have to drive them around, make food, keep the house clean, etc. All while being sick.

Hopefully I can keep this to myself. Or maybe they all have had our already. Since it's mostly stuffiness.

I thought it might be allergies. But I'm pretty sure it's not.

And I'm not even sure why I'm writing about it here. Or why I'm on here any way.


Abby 1 year old

Dearest Abigail,

This week you turned 1.

Its been a rough week for me, because I can't believe you are so big.

The day before your birthday you had your first dentist appointment. Natalie had one as well. She was just fine until they attempted to take an x-ray of her teeth. She then started crying and was terrified. She barely let the dentist look in her mouth. You also didn't like him looking in your mouth. He pointed out that you do, in fact, have an upper lip tie. He also said there is no reason to "fix" it, which I'm glad for because I don't think it needs to be fixed either. Its not tight, nursing isn't uncomfortable. You have only 4 teeth at this time.

Speaking of nursing, you are still happily doing there. So is Natalie. Though I distract her and am trying to gently wean her, she still asks almost every morning and night. but not every day. I am fine with you nursing longer, at least another year. We'll see what happens though.

No, you still are not walking. You can crawl, you cruise along furniture, you scoot on your bottom. You don't free-stand yet. It is interesting, I thought it would be ok, but I keep expecting to be able to just stand you there, and you immediately sit down. This doesn't work well when we're out in our yard, so I end up wearing you much of the time.

At this moment you are taking things out of my nightstand drawer. Cute, but kind of a pain. You love to take things out of cupboards as well. I always forget about this stage. 

Abby, you are a sweet snuggle baby, like Gwen was. You like to be held. You also love to follow your sisters around and don't like when they shut doors in your face. Your eyes light up when you see Natalie, she is your best buddy and I hope that stays the same.

You don't talk. You can sign "milk" and "all done" but that is it. You might say "Hi" but I'm not sure. You are doing things in your own time. And I love that about you.



I'm terrified that one of my kids will drown. Like an unhealthy fear of it.

On Thursday we were at a pool party and Natalie was in the hot tub. She tried to jump from one side to the other but can't swim so she was under the water and screaming. It was so scary.

That night I had a really hard time falling asleep. In fact I let Natalie sleep in bed with me and I kept checking on her. She wire a few times crying which didn't help my sleep. But I needed her close to me.

Once when Rhaynnon  was little, just over 2 i think, she feel into a lake. Backwards off of the dock. I could see her going under, like slow motion, sinking. I'm sure it was only seconds, it felt like forever. She was fine, but it's created a fear.

When I was a kid we spent the summer at the pool. Skin brown, except where our suits covered us. Hair bleached blonde from exposure.  Exhausted at night from hours spent being active.

But I'm afraid.

And I need to get the girls into swim lessons.


It is that time of year...

Depression time.

Its been a while since I felt this sort of sadness associated with May. But it is back.

Really I have no idea exactly what is wrong. It's like, walking around feeling like I forgot something (and I have, like my keys in the lock of the front door). Walking around with a huge rock in the pit of my stomach.

I am trying to function through, trying to remain happy and smile and be a nice person. But its all fake, all a lie.

In a few days my older girls will be out of school for the year. I'll officially have an eighth grader, a 3rd grader, a three year old and an *almost* one year old. When did that happen? We have some plans for the summer, and I know it will be over in the blink of an eye. Just like Abby's first year.

Where has time gone?

And why am I so sad?


Abby is getting so big!

Today Abby said "uh oh!" Then she signed milk.

And a few hours later she started giving kisses.

So super cute. I'm amazed at all of the things she's doing. But she will be 1 in only a few weeks.


11 Months Old- Abby

Dear Abigail,

You are 11 months old today. I can't remember if I wrote a 10 month post but a lot has changed in our lives since then.

My grandma (your great-grandma) Loretta passed away on the 16th of April. We had a funeral for her on the 26th. You met lots of people and refused to let anyone hold you. Daddy was ok, and maybe grandpa. But everyone else was chopped liver.

This month you started cruising around furniture. Really its just been in the last week or so. You'll take steps if I hold your hands but only towards me. You figured out how to crawl UP the steps and to climb onto things. Its cute, but you get stuck easily and that makes you so mad.

You've decided that Daddy is awesome. Sometimes. When you feel like it. You'll even reach for him and avoid me sometimes. I love that.

A few days ago you started playing peek-a-boo. Like pull a blanket over your face "Where's Abi" pull the blanket down "There she is!" I adore playing it with you, even if it means you are staying awake longer than you should.

My darling babiest girl, you are so serious most of the time. I love that you are, but sometimes I worry. Mostly because its my job as mom to worry about you and your sisters. You are a sweet girl, very loving, and so much your own person already.

Love always,
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