Tag Archives: Family

Happy New Year!

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year! Our’s was crazy-busy (there’s a reason I’ve disappeared for almost a full month!). Just before Christmas we had had the triplets fifth birthday, then Christmas, then New Years, and then we all got a lovely stomach bug that has been making it’s rounds. The last man standing was Matthew and he finally succumbed last weekend.

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There’s so much I want to be sharing with you, but I know I can’t just rush and throw it all out there. There’s the triplets Growing Up post, Peter’s 19 month post (yea, I know those are more for me than anyone else). We started finishing some major home renovation projects that I’m really excited about. Our iPhone 5C exploded and caught fire (no one was hurt). One child, he who shall not be named, decided to try and close my laptop with Legos in it (the Legos won). Needless to say my computer time has become severely limited.

I have been reading so many good books that I can’t wait to share with you in the next few weeks, as well as some of my really fun Christmas gifts. One of my friends has a fantastic new book that just came out, that I have yet to read and am so looking forward to. I started a Moms Group at our church, which is a whole other ride. It’s been crazy!

How have you been? How were your holidays? How are your families?

I hope everyone is well and I’m really looking forward, and hoping, to getting back to my space in the ether!

A Weekend Trip to Dublin: Proving to Myself that I am Capable

The end of a year often results in retrospection and the creation of new plans moving forward: Those very ideas stress the bejeezers out of me. The very idea of dissecting the good and the bad and thinking that somehow I’m going to do “me” different in the next year has, in my experience, resulted in more failures and disappointments than not.

I kind of take each year as it comes. Of course, I toy with the idea of hitting up the gym to lose those pesky last 50lbs post babies or setting up a new morning routine, but I know me…at least a little bit. Those kinds of “resolutions” just are not going to be what motivate me to do anything. I have to come to things by a much more….organic method.

I was listening to the SortaAwesome podcast while cleaning church this afternoon and they were talking about the personal growth and development that each of the hostesses experienced in 2016. I rolled my eyes, in my direction…not theirs, and though to myself: I think the only growth I had could be measured on my scale.

Then as I listened something started to whir inside of me…a few gears were beginning to tick and something began to foment in my mind. 2016 was LONG…not just long, but LOOOOOONNNNNNNGGGGGGG! Or at least December was. December alone was incredibly hard, not for me personally, but for our family, specifically my sister (she’s been in and out of the hospital with what can only be described as a medical mystery seeing as no one knows what’s going on).

But there was January. A whole year ago.

Last January, I did something crazy and completely out of character for me…something that some would consider borderline irresponsible/crazy. At the time it was just a fun idea, a pipe dream if you will, but it quickly progressed past that into one of the greatest gifts someone could have ever given me.

My parents and sister went to Ireland last January for a 10 day vacation. I have loved Ireland since I was a tween…like L.O.V.E. it. I studied abroad there the summer of 2014, Matthew and I went in 2016. It truly is my second home, and some place I would not be at all surprised to find myself living when I grow up.

On a particularly hard Mom-Wednesday I was googling airfare on a whim, because honestly I was done with the screaming and shouting and arguing about doing school, and I found an incredible deal on airfare from JFK to Dublin. I giggled, texted Matt I was going, and chuckled. Then I kept thinking about it….my parents were scheduled to be in Dublin on Friday and come home on Sunday. And I kept thinking about it. I mentioned it to Matt. He chuckled too.

But I kept thinking about it. All. Night. Long.

I sat at the computer on Thursday morning and looked again, it was still there. I bravely mentioned it to Matthew and kind of made a joke about it, because SERIOUSLY there was no way I was going to go Ireland that night. Who does that?! Matthew texted me back a little later:

“Do you really want to go?”
“Well YEA! Who wouldn’t? But I know that’s completely unrealistic.”

30 minutes later Matthew called me, telling me to book the airfare, his mom would take the kids that night and Friday (he’d be home on the weekend). I was dumbfounded. Like seriously could NOT say anything. My hands started shaking, I was thinking the airfare would be gone, I’d do something and book the wrong thing. I started texting people to find out where to park my car, how to navigate a last minute flight out of JFK.

I managed to book the airfare and received my confirmation (hoping that my passport that would expire the following month wouldn’t be an issue).

“It’s booked. I can’t leave without saying good-bye to you first.”
“I know. I’m hurrying to get home. – My dad is going to take you to the airport.”

There were no words.

Matthew got home in time to not only see me off, but drive me to the airport too. I was off to my second home!

I landed in Dublin the following morning and walked out in the frigid sunshine, all smiles. I found the bus that I needed to take to get to where the AirBnB was that my parents were renting, hopped off, and began my meander through the city center and Trinity Colleges campus. The cold air filling my lungs, my thighs feeling frosted and warm from walking in the cold, and it was WONDERFUL!

I was completely alone without a schedule or anything else, and I had successfully navigated an international airport, and a city bus system without getting lost!

There was something that I desperately needed to learn on that trip…

While I am a wife and a mother, I am not defined solely by those things: I am a capable adult.

I am a capable adult outside of those titles, and I can do things that I’ve sort of forgotten that I could. It’s not that I became incapable at anything besides being a wife and mother, it’s that I forgot who I was as just me.

Henry, James, and Elanor – 5 Years Old

It was emotionally having these three turn 5. So many thoughts and memories of what it was like to find out we would have three babies at once. So much remembering doctors appointments and their births. We just got a copy of their birth records and to read them it’s awe-inspiring; Ellie’s APGAR at birth was 1.  Reading her reports you start to realize just how close she was to not making it in those first few minutes.

We’ve always known how incredibly blessed we were with their pregnancy, birth, and everything else, but sometimes it HITS you just how blessed we are. As crazy as it is having triplets, I wouldn’t change any of them or it for the world. I think about that doctor who wanted me to abort one or more of them and I think, “How could I? Who would we be without?” I can’t imagine being without any of them.

HenryIMG_4591

  • Weighing 49lbs
  • Standing 3′ 8.8″
  • Absolute Lego FIEND….not kidding this kid is obsessed with Legos. He’s just started being able to put legos together on his own via the instructions, but builds crazy elaborate things from his imagination. He’s content to just play Legos quietly for such a long time.
  • Way skinnier than he looks (he’s got that adorable chubby baby face)
  • Acts like a crazy boy and can’t make a normal face in a picture
  • LOVES his baby brother (and all babies)
  • Loves playing rough, but only if it’s on his terms
  • Is a total momma’s boy…he’s very content to stay home with me, rather than go to anyone’s house, especially overnight
  • Struggles with when things don’t go his way or his lego creations break
  • Loves getting snuggled on the couch with lots of blankies to watch movies
  • He very much internalizes any sort of correction, he has a very gentle soul…it’s a struggle to correct him without his shutting down or becoming defensive

 

JamesIMG_4592

  • Weighing 56 lbs
  • Standing 4′
  • He’s a BEAST! An absolute beast on every single level…he’s physically huge, emotionally huge, intelligence huge…just huge.
  • He thinks he’s in charge…which gets him into quite a bit of trouble. He doesn’t think twice about telling me (or other adults) what we should be doing or not doing
  • He likes Legos, but nowhere near the way Henry does
  • Really enjoys books…he’ll sit down on his own and just look at the pictures and pretend he’s reading (there’s a video on instagram of him reading Where the Wild Things Are)
  • Has a temper like you wouldn’t believe, and thinks nothing of hauling off and whacking me (fortunately he doesn’t do it with his siblings…for the most part).
  • He loves playing with Avie
  • He’s fantastic with Peter and such a big help with getting him from upstairs (only Avie is big enough to do that, besides James…he’s only an 1″ shorter than her)
  • Despite all of his temper and aggression about things, he really is such a loving and compassionate boy. He’s very aware of taking care of me…refilling my glass of water is a big one.
  • Has his first loose tooth (lost it on 1/21/17)

 

ElanorIMG_4590

  • Weighing 41lbs
  • Standing 3′ 7″
  • She rules the roost!
  • She’s still the peanut, even though she’s really not that tiny (she’s 63% for height!)
  • LOVES Barbies….Avie likes them too, but Ellie takes it to the EXTREME
  • She loves being snuggled and cozied in my or Matthew’s lap (having her Oma blanket is an absolute MUST)
  • She’s becoming a fantastic artist…she loves painting and coloring (still on my walls!)
  • Elanor has a very sneaky and deceptive streak…she will say she didn’t do something that you KNOW she did, then give the hugest sigh and says “I did it”…so much drama
  • SO MUCH DRAMA!
  • Being the littlest, before Peter, we weren’t sure how things would go down between the two of them, but she absolutely LOVES her little brother. She loves when I will hold both of them and say that I have my two babies.
  • She loves hearing about how she’s always been in the middle between Henry and James…whether it was in my tummy (she was originally baby B) or in cribs (when she was released from the NICU she was still struggling with maintaining her body temperature, so she was always nestled between them to keep her warm).

HJE at 5

In Their Own Words

Henry

1. What is your favorite color? Blue
2. What is your favorite toy? Legos
3. Favorite thing to play? Play on mommy’s iphone because it’s blue
4. What is your favorite fruit? Pasta
5. What is your favorite TV show? Ninjago
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Eggie Sandwich (scrambled egg on toast, with avocado and pepper jack cheese) – He said Crepes.
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Mack-y-doodle (mac n cheese)
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Meatballs and Pizza
9. What is your favorite snack? Strawberries
10. What is your favorite outfit? Pajamas
11. What is your favorite computer game? Lego Ninjago
12. What is your favorite game? Shoot guns with Daddy (Nerf)
13. What is your favorite snack? Chips and dip
14. What is your favorite animal? Sheep
15. What is your favorite song? Can’t Stop the Feeling and Schlaf Kind
16. What is your favorite book? Lego Ninjago Stickers
17. Who is your best friend? Roran
18. What is your favorite cereal? Mommy’s cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Going on the swings when you swing me
20. What is your favorite drink? Water and milk
21. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas and Birthday
22. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? Uncle Brian’s cuz they have cool legos
23. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My oma blankie and georgie
24. What do you want to be when you grow up? Luke Skywalker! Because he has a blue light saber
25. Favorite place to visit? Roran’s House
26.  Least favorite family rule? You don’t let me go on devices whenever I want
27. Favorite thing about our family? Because we get Legos

James

1. What is your favorite color? Orange
2. What is your favorite toy? Optimus Prime Transformer
3. Favorite thing to play? Spiderman on LeapTV
4. What is your favorite fruit? Mangos
5. What is your favorite TV show? Care Bears and Cousins
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Dippin’ Egg
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Turkey and avocado with mayo on rye
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Breakfast Dinner
9. What is your favorite snack? Mango Smoothie
10. What is your favorite outfit? Sweatshirt and pants
11. What is your favorite computer game? Ninjago Legos and ABC Mouse
12. What is your favorite game? Shoot guns with Daddy (Nerf)
13. What is your favorite snack? Creamy cheese dip
14. What is your favorite animal? Giraffe and Penguins
15. What is your favorite song? Jesus Loves Me and Hush Little Baby
16. What is your favorite book? Where the Wild Things Are
17. Who is your best friend? Abby
18. What is your favorite cereal? I don’t like cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play and watch superhero
20. What is your favorite drink? Apple Cider
21. What is your favorite holiday? Easter, cause I get candy.
22. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? Hershey Park
23. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Croc (his pillow Pet)
24. What do you want to be when you grow up? a pilot and (Not a doctor) be a ninja
25. Favorite place to visit? North Carolina
26. Least favorite family rule? Not getting him what he wants (a video game)
27. Favorite thing about our family? All of us snuggling together in mommy and daddy’s bed

Elanor

1. What is your favorite color? Pink
2. What is your favorite toy? Barbie
3. Favorite thing to play? Barbies
4. What is your favorite fruit? Apples
5. What is your favorite TV show? Night at the Museum
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Pancakes
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Mack-y-doodle (mac n cheese)
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Mushrooms and Pasta
9. What is your favorite snack? Carrots
10. What is your favorite outfit? Pretty comfy clothes
11. What is your favorite computer game? The Wild Kratts
12. What is your favorite game? Duck Duck Goose
13. What is your favorite animal? Dragon
14. What is your favorite song? Ariel
15. What is your favorite book? Dragons Love Tacos
16. Who is your best friend? Clare Bear
17. What is your favorite cereal? Mommy’s Cereal (crispix)
18. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Swing with Mommy
19. What is your favorite drink? Pineapple Juice
20. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
21. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? North Carolina
22. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Oma blanket and stuffed animals
23. What do you want to be when you grow up? A mermaid fairy princess
24. Favorite place to visit? Esther’s house
25. Least favorite family rule? No jumping on the couch
26. Favorite thing about our family? My baby brother

(At some point I’ll upload their videos)

Paying it forward

I’m not sure how it’s been 5 years, but it has. On Thursday Henry, James, and Elanor will be turning 5 years old. I may have to spend the day in bed with the blankets over my head, because I am completely in denial that they’re 5. There are no words as to how grateful I am that we have Peter, because it’s been a whir!

Five years ago, on December 22, 2011 we found ourselves at Albany Medical Center, very anxiously awaiting the arrival of our little ones. A few hours later Henry, James, and Elanor were born and hurried off to the NICU. I was discharged on the afternoon of Christmas Eve, going home to our two-year-old, leaving our babies in the hospital. It was one of the hardest things we have ever had to do.

Christmas morning, we drove the two hours back to AMC to spend our first Christmas with our newest family members. It was the first time we could hold all of them. The nurses in the NICU were wonderful and had told us that someone had knit little hats for the babies in the NICU on Christmas and would we be willing to accept one for each of our peanuts.

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Every Christmas we look at those tiny hats and marvel at how they were BIG on our now huge five year olds. The gift of those hats meant so much to us on an incredibly hard Christmas. It has been my goal that for our babies’ fifth birthday I would make three Christmas baby quilts for three little ones spending their first Christmas in the NICU. These are those quilts.

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My Favorite Things – A Collection of White House Christmas Bests

Over the past 9 years of blogging I’ve written quite a bit about my favorite time of the year, Christmas. From books we love to things we do, recipes and ways to enjoy the season more fully. For a while now I’ve been meaning to collect all of these posts together in one place…and now I am.

For the Book Lover!


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http://jessicam white.com/new-favorite-christmas-books-children

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For the Foodie!

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For the Stressed-Out!

a Simple Christmas @JessicaMWhite.com
Taking the Stress out Christmas Shopping @JessicaMWhite.com