Monday, December 19, 2011

The Elf

This morning the kids woke up to find the Elf clinging to the star atop our Christmas Tree.

Weird, but none of them was worried that he might get burned by the star...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Elf

Like many families, we've been using one of Santa's little helpers to keep our little helpers in line leading up to Christmas. We've come up with some pretty good spots for the little guy to keep an eye on the triplets, so I've decided to start snapping some photos of him on his various perches. I'll share some of the better ones here.

Today, I really just want to turn the fan on:

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Picture Outtakes

This year, I wanted to get a good picture of all three kids for our Christmas Card. Somehow, every year, I seem to forget how difficult it is to get all three of them to look at the camera with a nice smile at the exact same time. While it is frustrating while I'm doing it, when I look at the "outtakes", I'm glad I do it. Their individual personalities really shine in some of these pictures. They're each so funny and cute in their own little way.

Now I'd like to share a few of the outtakes with you.

Friday, December 9, 2011


We've been talking a lot lately about Santa Claus and how he gets around, especially how he gets into houses. I absolutely love the way Juli has been saying Chimney.

We've also been fielding a lot of questions about the Elf on the Shelf that has taken up residence with us to keep an eye on the kids for Santa. Each morning when they wake up the Elf is in a different spot in the house, out of reach of the kids, but somewhere that he can keep an eye on them to make sure they're being nice.

The kids want to know how he gets around in the house, and how he gets to the North Pole and back while they're sleeping (he uses magic, just like Santa uses magic to come down the chimney).

Last night, after the kids went to bed, I placed the Elf high up in our Christmas Tree. This morning I forgot to check whether or not he was still there this morning when I went to wake the kids up. They rushed downstairs to find the Elf face down on the floor next to the tree. They were a little confused, so I told them that he was tired from a long trip up to the North Pole and must have fallen asleep before he found a good spot to watch them from. I distracted them with some breakfast and quickly placed the Elf back in the tree while they weren't looking. They were very relieved to see that he was okay.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Thomas the Tank Engine

This past weekend I did something that I've always wanted to do. When I was growing up my family never put a train under the tree. We always put a train up, but the set was too big to put under the tree, so we set it up in the basement on a ping pong table. It was fun, but I still wanted to have a train under the tree.

So, on Saturday morning after the kids woke up, we got out the Thomas the Train set that we bought last year but never put out because the kids weren't quite ready for it yet. After a little set up and a lecture about when we can and when we can't play with the train, I let them play.

I know it's a simple thing, but the kids enjoy it, and I enjoy watching them and the enjoyment little things like this bring them. You can't tell by their expressions in the pictures, but they did have a pretty good time with it.

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Change In The Weather

It's really hard to believe that we went from seventy degrees and sunny to snow in a matter of three days.

I took these photos three days ago:

This morning we woke up to this:

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

The triplets got dressed up in their costumes the last week for a little Halloween program at pre-school.

Then on Saturday we carved our Jack O'Lanterns. The kids picked out their design while Gretch and I cut them out. Elisha actually reached all the way in and grabbed a bunch of the "guts". She didn't seem to mind it too much. KJ would only reach in with the scoop and was taking out one seed at a time. Juli wasn't feeling too well so she just sat and watched for the most part.

Then on Sunday the kids found their stash of toys from their school Halloween party. The fangs were a big hit. Juli really looks the part, mostly because of the cold that she's had. The poor thing has rubbed the skin under her nose raw. I really hope this cold passes quickly (and doesn't infect the rest of us).

Friday, October 7, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Triplets' Pre-School Update

Today the triplets got a little surprise at pre-school when I volunteered to be the class helper. Each day, one parent from the class is the class helper, who gets to hang out and play with the kids and be an extra set of eyes & ears for the teacher. Since no other parent had signed up to be the helper today, I volunteered.

Now, when a parent is the class helper, their child gets to be the leader. The leader gets to do things like ring the bell that signals that it's time to clean up, be the first in line and lead the class to the next activity, and lead any group activities. Since today was "purple day" at the school, I thought it would be appropriate to have Elisha be the leader for the day (purple is her "most favorite" color, after all). She was in heaven.

It's very interesting watching the triplets in a more social situation than they're used to. I saw a lot from them that I liked, and little bits that I didn't like. They all did very well with sharing and following directions, with a few exceptions (to be expected). That didn't surprise me at all. But when it was time for "free play" I was surprised to see Juli off in a corner by herself drawing. Well, it surprised me at first, after I thought about it for a while, she is the one who most often will go off into a corner of the house to play by herself when we are at home. I guess it just caught me off guard, especially when she moved onto something else, again something no one else was playing with, when some of her classmates decided to join her little art session. It seemed as tho she didn't want to be around the other kids. She wasn't mean or nasty to them, she just wanted to be alone, and would move on to something else any time someone tried to join her.

Now, this could very well have just been her mood today, so it's something that I'll have to watch for the next time I'm the helper.

KJ and Elisha on the other hand, were in the middle of the mayhem the entire day. They really seemed to enjoy playing with the other kids. Especially KJ. He had a great time with all of the other boys on the little climber/slide playset that they have. They were quite rambunctious, but no one needed more than a gentle reminder to slow down or take turns.

I had a good time today with all of the kids. I'm looking forward to the next time I'm the class helper (might be a different story by the end of the year, since I have to do it 20+ times...)

Friday, September 30, 2011

KJ: Private Investigator

The triplets celebrated their fourth birthday a couple of weeks ago and got a lot of great presents. Among them are a few sets of girly Legos (with pink blocks and flowers and such), and actual, honest to goodness digital cameras.

The cameras are made by vtech and are pretty sturdy. So far I've been pleased with them. They actually take decent pictures when you hold them steady. The problem is that the kids don't often hold them steady, so most of the pictures they take are unrecognizable blurry works of art. However, every once in a while there's a good, clear, well composed picture in there.

Yesterday we busted out the Legos and were building lots of cool trucks, tractors, gas stations, helicopters, and even little pink houses with flowers. At some point KJ decided to get me back for all of the pictures I've taken of him in the princess and fairy dresses and take a few of me playing with the pink Legos. And wouldn't you know it, they actually turned out okay. I mean, they're a little blurry, but you can definitely make out that the person playing with the pink Legos is me.

The little bugger might have a future in surveillance.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Need a laugh? Watch this video of the Triplets

The triplets were having so much fun playing Ants In The Pants last night that I just had to capture some video.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Triplets' Fourth Birthday Party: Video

A couple of weeks ago I got myself a Nikon D7000 to use around the house for pictures and video of the kids. While I do love the quality of the video, I have to admit, taking video with it is a challenge for me, especially focusing (as you'll see in the video). It has several focusing modes that are supposed to track subjects or focus on a certain area. I'm still trying to figure out which one to use in which situations. I also realize that I need a better external microphone, as the one I bought picks up the sound of the lens focusing (the motor sound you'll hear at times).

So, here it is, my first attempt at a DSLR video. I apologize for my unsteady hands, focusing, and audio issues. Those who are prone to motion sickness might want to take some Dramamine before watching. ;)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Pre-School Drop-Off Saga Continues

This pre-school thing is turning out to be a great source of stories. This morning as I was walking the kids into their classroom Elisha started to cry a little and repeated "I'll miss you" several times. I kept reassuring her and telling her that I would be back to pick her up and that she was going to do lots of fun things at school. At this point Juli looked up at me dry-eyed and said "I'm not going to miss you daddy".

Way to make a dad feel good kiddo.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Little Brother Saves The Day

As many of you have read, the triplets started pre-school last week, and every time I dropped them off, the girls would cry and tell me how much they would miss me. It was pretty heart-breaking.

This morning was their first day back after the weekend since they only go three days a week. As I was getting the kids out of the van, KJ turned to his sisters and sternly (with a pointed finger for emphasis) told them "No crying in school today, Girls." I was having a hard time containing my laughter. At that point, Juli tried to sneak past him to get to me, and he pointed his finger at her and sternly said "No crying, Juli, okay?" and would not let her pass until she agreed not to cry. Once she agreed, he let her past and turned to Elisha and made her agree not to cry.

It was truly the sweetest, funniest thing I have seen him do in his four years. I was cracking up by the time I had them all out of the van and headed into the school. The other parents probably think I'm a mental case now.

The best part about it all, is that it worked. Juli, who was the worst last week, didn't cry at all today. Elisha only whimpered a little and said "I'll miss you" as I left their classroom. Leave it to little brother to show the girls how it's done!

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Triplets Turned Four

Yesterday we had a party for the Triplets' Fourth Birthday! It's so hard to believe they're already four years old and in pre-school. The kids got a lot of great new toys to annoy mommy and daddy play with. I'm especially excited about all of the non-Duplo Legos they got. Although right now they are getting a bit frustrated with them because they don't stick together as well. We'll just have to practice building with them... a lot.

Many thanks to all who came out to celebrate with us and for all of your generous gifts. And a special thank you to my photography partner-in-crime, Tom, for taking all of the photos and letting me enjoy the party.

Here are the photos: