|Snuggling on our new sectional|
|First day of tennis lessons|
|A rare evening when Graham went to bed first and we were just hanging out with the five of us. Now that we have Graham, "just triplets" seems like it would be easy ;).|
|Always excited about new shoes. Jack learned to tie shoes in less than 20 minutes. He was determined to have shoes with shoestrings, but I said he only could have them if he tied them himself!|
|Water and the trampoline is a blast|
|I can't keep up with them on their bikes when I run, but at least I'm getting a workout in and they are enjoying themselves too!|
|They love these kind of swings, which are perfect for triplets.|
|I waited a very long time before trying Trader Joe's with the kid carts. It was worth the wait as it wasn't that stressful and the kids thought it was super special.|
Heights and Weights:
Alexis: 44.5" and 36.5 lbs (+2.5" and 4 lbs in the last year)
Jack: 43.5" and 34.5 lbs (+2.5" and 4 lbs in the last year)
Faith: 46.5" and 38.5 lbs (+2.5" and 4 lbs in the last year)
* I have no idea how they managed to grow the same number of inches and gain the same number of pounds in the last week. I guess I should be thankful since everything is a competition and this way there is a tie!
|There stair step height difference is very obvious in photos|
|Faith outgrew her 5-point harness carseat, so we bought her a high back booster. The other two were fairly jealous at first, but they are over it now. I'm sure they will make the transition in the next year or so.|
Jack: He had his adenoids out in March as we felt like that was causing the issue with his eating (he seemed to eat slowly because he couldn't breathe and eat at the same time). Unfortunately when the doctor removed his adenoids she said they weren't as large as they had appeared on the X-ray, but he does have small nasal passages so that could be causing the issue. Thankfully he was back to 100% a couple of weeks after the procedure. He continues to be “all boy” in his interests. He has become the most confident climber and the strongest as he can do five pull-ups in a row. He knows he’s the smallest triplet and he’s determined to be big and strong someday, so he loves to do little exercises like sit ups and lunges to get stronger. Jack has become very brave when it comes to trying things (going down the big slide, climbing, the zip line at the park, etc.).
Faith: She continues to be the self appointed leader of the trio. She is a perfectionist and she does not like being corrected, which is challenging when trying to homeschool a Kindergartener who still has a lot of learning ahead of her. She also loves to be helpful, which can be great. She has a really wiggly tooth, and she will soon be the first of the triplets to have lost a tooth naturally (Jack has two teeth pulled when he was four).
All of Them:
Playing Upstairs: The main level of our house is an open floor plan. Although this was ideal for keeping track of three babies / toddlers when the kids were younger, as they have gotten bigger it simply meant that the main floor was a mess of toys and that all of the noise and chaos was near me all of the time. For the past couple of years I had been encouraging the kids to play upstairs in the loft and in their rooms, but they usually just ended up bringing whatever toys were upstairs back to the main level. This felt frustrating to me and I'd often tell Micah that my dream was to have them play out of sight since it felt like I didn't have a moment to finish a thought during the day. Recently, when Micah came home after work one day, he pointed out that the kids had been playing upstairs a lot more as we were actually able to have a short conversation when he came through the door instead of me competing with the kids for his attention. This was an amazing realization!! Part of this transition has to do with our main floor remodel since we now have a giant sectional in the area where the kids used to spread out their toys and run around, plus the floor is no longer carpeted in that area so it's probably not as comfortable to play there. Another part of this has to do with trying to keep Graham from messing up their games. I do believe, though, that part of this simply has to do with them being older and not needing to be right by me every second of every day. This has been a welcome change for me since it keeps some of the mess and chaos upstairs and gives me a little more quiet during the day. (Although this also means that I'm often downstairs working on dinner or laundry and wondering if I should go upstairs to break up a fight since it's hard to tell when the yelling is play or a disagreement.)
|I snapped this photo during our remodel this winter. We had already cut out some of the carpet, but this is the area the kids played on from the time we moved in over 5 years ago.|
|The new family room / play area set up. I tried to buy a really comfortable area rug for the kids to play on, but the new furniture takes up a lot of the floorspace.|
|Early morning reading|
Different Interests: Jack has become more frustrated with the girls lately as he simply doesn’t want to play the games that they want to play. Most of the time he ends up going along with it, but they usually want to be dogs and he is tired of that game. He cannot wait until the day Graham is really old enough to play with. The other day Jack and Graham had a foam sword fight, and Jack was elated. Hopefully more of this will happen in the future since Jack is often upset that the girls don't want to play "bad guys" or whatever games he has made up.
|The kids were interested in playing Monopoly and Micah patiently played with them four days in a row! The first day they played for over two hours.|
|One day they were a little bored and the weather wasn't great, so they started playing games themselves. I've been waiting for things like this to start happening!|
|Faith made her own kangaroo costume|
|I think Jack was a snow leopard. They spend so much time making costumes.|
|A very elaborate tea party, which involved taking all of this kitchen stuff to the main floor as it's kept in the loft upstairs.|
|They created a juice stand based on a book.|
|This is supposed to be Daddy on a float.|
|Jack loves to dress up.|
Kindergarten Grads: In May they finished Kindergarten and they are looking forward to first grade, which is great as for awhile they talked about how scared they were to go onto First Grade. Now they love to say to me when I treat them younger than they are, "Mom, we are First Graders now!" We are hopeful they’ll get into a school in another district (we are on the waitlist), but if not they’ll go to our neighborhood school.
|Walking to the car after school|
|Graham wanted to be like the other kids at a school event|
Reading, Writing, Math, and Telling Time: When I signed up to homeschool our kids part time I had no idea how much the kids actually learned in Kindergarten. I remember learning my letters and counting. This year our kids learned how to read and we are currently working our way through all of the Bob Book sets. They all have good handwriting and they love to sound out words to make notes and signs. They learned how to add and subtract. And they even learned how to tell time on an analog clock! It has been amazing to witness them learning all of these things and more during the last year.
|Grammy always brings a bag of books, and the kids devour them.|
|A note from Faith|
Art: We continue to have a constant stream of art at our house, especially from Jack. We are always amazed by Jack's drawings and he seems to really enjoy it. Faith enjoys it as well, but lately she seems more focused on writing notes. Alexis doesn’t love drawing as much, but she is still proud when she makes something.
|Valentine's decorations. The kids get really into things and it's hard to say no, even though these aren't my ideal decorations.|
|Jack sat at the table for two hours listening to music and drawing the other day|
Regular Plates: This might sound like a funny milestone, but when you have four kids using plastic dishes the top rack of the dishwasher fills up fast! For awhile I turned the heated dry off of my dishwasher so that I could put the plastic stuff on the bottom rack, but I was always fighting mold in the bottom of the dishwasher. In the last few months I started having the kids use regular plates for most of their meals and it has been great for my dishwashing loading routine! The kids also feel ver grown up since we are trusting them with the dishes I got for Christmas this past year. (Graham still uses a plastic plate, although I don't think he's ever thrown his plate on the floor like the other kids did when they were younger.)
Eating: For a long time Jack struggled to eat. He was fairly picky and he always seemed too distracted to eat. I even took him to an OT to have him evaluated to see if there was a concrete issue we could work on with him, but nothing was found. Thankfully, something has clicked with Jack in the last year and he now is a fairly good an focused eater. There are still foods that he doens't like or doesn't want to try, but things have gotten a lot less stressful for us at meal time. Alexis struggles to find food that she really likes for snacks and lunch, but she does fine with breakfast and dinner. Alexis doesn't like many sweets as she says that they tickle her throat, so even Fig Bars, Z Clif Bars, and applesauce don't appeal to her most of the time (those are staples in my diaper bag). Faith really likes it all, which is probably why she continues to be the biggest triplet.
Backyard Play: They all love riding the little bikes in the backyard, which are really Graham’s size and are meant for him. Our yard is definitely too small for the kids now, but they make do. Someday when we move I'd love to have a larger backyard and be at the end of a cul-de-sac so that the kids can ride their bikes around without having to go to a park.
Park Play: This has become much easier, except for Graham of course. They can all keep themselves going on a swing by pumping, and Faith and Jack can even start swinging by themselves. All three are pros at the monkey bars.
Climbing: I wish we would have taken them to the gym more, but it was hard to find time during the school year. All three were excited to climb outside this past weekend, but Jack is the one who understands it the most right now and can consistently make it to the top of the wall. The girls are athletic too, though, and I think they will catch on soon. The kids are all strong as the girls can each do one pull-up and Jack is up to five in a row.
|Auto belay at the gym|
|Jack and Alexis at the gym|
Skiing: They all skied a few times this winter and they do really well. Micah always has his dad with him to help with the kids, but next year I'm guessing he'll be able to ski alone with them if he wants to try.
Swimming: We stopped our weekly indoor swim lessons last July and it was obvious that the kids hadn't been swimming in awhile when we first went a few weeks ago. But right now they are in swim lessons at the Y and they are doing well. They are in the Guppy level, so they can float and they can swim a few yards to the teacher using doggy paddle / freestyle. They are extremely comfortable in the water, and they are able to jump in and then turn around and get themselves back to the wall. I believe they will become much stronger swimmers this summer after more lessons and practice.
|It's been a little bit chilly this summer, so they always want to lay on the ground to warm up after swim lessons|
Big Siblings: They are all constantly commenting on how cute Graham is, which is great considering how often he also frustrates them. He gets into their toys and ruins their creations. He has bitten Jack several times when he gets mad about something, but Jack is quick to forgive. They are great at telling me if Graham is getting into trouble.
Jack's Roommate: Jack and Graham now share a room which has worked so well. I decided to move Graham a couple of months ago after having family in town and having to move Graham out of his own room for the 100th time. Although it worked well for Graham to have his own room most of the time, having to move him meant that his sleep was disrupted as well as ours since he would sleep in a pack-n-play in our room. Although it was a difficult couple of nights, overall the transition of putting the boys in the same room went very smoothly. Jack is extremely proud to have a "mate" as he calls it. The girls have almost always shared a room, and I think Jack was always a little jealous about that.
Birthday Weekend Recap:
Months ago we mentioned to the kids that we could camp and climb at the Enchanted Tower for their birthday. They loved that idea and immediately they started creating signs and invitations to "The Big Tower" and they hung them all over upstairs. We hadn't been to The Tower since last September or October, so Micah and I were both surprised when Faith drew a very accurate picture of the main feature on one of her signs. Although the rest of the signs and invites were taken down soon after the kids made them, I kept the one picture from Faith on the wall until this weekend.
|Faith's drawing of the tower and a campfire|
As the birthday got closer the kids started getting cold feet about camping. They have been to friend's birthday parties and they kind of wanted one of their own. Of course we could have done both a party and camping, but putting together and hosting parties aren't my favorite thing, and getting ready for a camping trip is a ton of work, so I told the kids that we were going to stick with camping and we would have a lot of fun.
Unfortunately, Micah got a cold 10 days before we left and it lingered for awhile and he lost his voice. The cold preceded to make it's way through 3 of the 4 kids, so I was really worried that Faith and I might get it at the last minute and not feel well during our trip. Thankfully that didn't happen and overall we enjoyed ourselves.
Our friends were also planning on camping at The Tower since we made the plan several months ago, and it was extra special since my friend Val shares a birthday with Alexis, Jack, and Faith. Her youngest son also turned 2 over the weekend, so we had five birthdays between the 12 of us in three days.
We celebrated the birthday weekend with lots of sugar (cupcakes, cake, soda, s'mores, and other junk food), climbing (we had to take turns watching the kids, but everyone got a little climbing in), the "Mega King Swing" (the kids swinging from a tope rope hung on the most famous climb in NM called Goliath), playing in the dirt, lounging in hammocks, sitting by campfires, and some adult beverages for the parents. As expected there were some difficult moments, as there always are in life, but it was definitely a memorable weekend. Hopefully when the kids look back on their 6th birthday they remember all of the fun they had!
|Cupcakes on their actual birthday|
|Camping with friends is so much fun|
|Our only family photo form the weekend|
|Birthday photo with their birthday buddy Val|