As we drive home on Highway 5 from Thousand Oaks Chris and I reflected on our first road trip as a family of six with 7 month old triplets and a four year old. We decided that this trip was a huge success from beginning to end. In front of me are the huge rolling mountains of Southern California, city lights all around us and it is a beautiful 78 degrees outside. I remember when I was first pregnant with triplets, a time I like to call Sleepless in Sacramento, and I thought to myself at 2am that I am never going to get to go anywhere again. I really thought that. Who wouldn’t think that? And although Hawaii or Cabo San Lucas is out of the question right now, our little road trip to Southern California was very much a wonderful vacation for all six of us. We spent Wednesday and Thursday at Disneyland and California Adventure Park and Ava had the time of her life. Chris and I had a very good time as well, even sneaking in a couple of fun rides ourselves.
The Happiest Place on Earth September 29, 2008
Road Trip 2008 September 25, 2008
We are now driving down highway 5 toward The Woolseys of Westlake’s home in beautiful Thousand Oaks and we have been taking in the stench of the poop of a thousand cows for literally 20 minutes now. Occasionally Ava peers out from her Mickey Mouse Clubhouse movie and says in an extra loud voice because she is wearing headphones “what is that smell?”. It is now 8:30 and we have been on the road since 7pm. We spent the entire day packing for this trip while taking care of four kids, which was no easy task. Our minivan doesn’t look as ridiculously loaded as one might think it would in our situation. Luckily, the Woolseys of Westlake have made it easy on us by borrowing three portacribs with all the fixings, exersaucers, a jumperoo, a double and a single stroller, and bought our diapers and baby food for us so we wouldn’t have to cart it all down in the van. Very thoughtful of them.
Yesterday I made a trip out to Babies R Us and purchased three of these styrophome looking noodles to place under the babies’ carseats so they are in a nice comfortable recline position more conducive to sleep. Although I felt kind of silly buying yet another overpriced product for the babies, we need all kids to sleep on this trip, and I am willing to do almost anything to ensure that happens. Chris just told me that if there is an uprising in the minivan tonight it is a 50 / 50 split between it being caused by Ava or the triplets. But then he changed his mind to 60 / 40 favoring a victory by Ava.
I was up with Violet last night because she has a little cold which is making it difficult for her to breath out of her nose. She relies heavily on her binkie for sleep and when she cannot breath out of her nose this makes it hard to suck on her binkie. I slept up in the guest bedroom with her and it was a very restless sleep for both of us. So in the middle of the night I was worried about this road trip and all of the disasters that could ensue when traveling with 7 month old triplets and a four year old. In the end, there is probably never going to be a perfect scenario so we may as well just go for it, illness or no illness.
As Chris and I haul this large young family down Highway 5 we couldn’t help but reminisce about Woolsey/ Traub road trips of the past. I remembered being about 6 or 7 and being loaded in the back of the ‘ol woody stationwagon at 4 in the morning and hopping into the back where nice sleeping bags and pillows had been set up for us to sleep for the early morning road trip. Yeah, that was before seatbelts were such a big deal.
Chris told me the story about his road trips with his parents and two brothers where they would have these hand held video games like pac man and generic football and they would play them like crazy the whole trip. But the little video games were hard to see in the bright daylight so Dick Woolsey would be in the driver’s seat staying the course while his wife and three kids would be playing their video games underneath a sheet so they could see them better. Chris wondered what passer byers must have thought as they passed the car of ghosts.
So here we are, making our first road trip memories. So far I am happy to say it has been uneventful. My tummy is a grumbly. I have been watching too much Winnie The Pooh. I need some junk food. I will report back later.
The Woolsey 6 showed up at the Woolsey’s of Westlake’s home at 1:15am – only 6 1/2 hours after we left Cameron Park. Pretty good timing. All four kids slept almost the entire way. Elsa woke up about 10 minutes before we arrived at Chris’s parent’s house and by the time we got them all out of the car everyone was awake. The hard part was getting the babies back to sleep in an unfamiliar environment once we were there. It took us about 1 1/2 hours to get all the babies to sleep and then we were up at 7am with all the kids. Not a great sleep but it was fine. We are used to sleep deprivation.
Wednesday – Disneyland Day
So, the babies all woke up with colds today and grandma and papa will now be taking care of three babies with colds. I was sleeping in the same room as the triplets last night and at 5:30 in the morning I heard three babies who could barely breath through their noses. I will get the full report on how they did with our their mommy later tomorrow.
Disneyland was fantastic today. Ava was a superstar all day and we literally went on every ride at Disneyland that Ava was tall enough to go on. We even went on the Matterhorn and Ava didn’t even cry. At one point during the ride I said “don’t cry Ava = it’s almost over” and she said “mommy, I’m not crying I’m laughing.” The highlight of the day was the Disney Parade of Dreams at the end of the night. All the characters paraded down Main Street and Ava was in heaven. She loves the characters so much.
Tomorrow we will begin our day having breakfast with Goofy at Goofy’s Kitchen, and then we will head to Disney’s California Adventure Park. No we shall sleep.
Until next time, the mothership is signing off.
Skunks, Hallucinations and More September 19, 2008
Chris was gone all week again. This time he was in Arizona from Monday and he arrives back home today. Usually I dread his departure for about a week before he leaves and then in the middle of my single mom adventures I decide that it hasn’t been as bad as I thought it would be without my partner in parenthood. This week was not one of those times. This week started off badly because I got a cold on Monday that grew more annoying and difficult by Tuesday, tapering off on Wednesday, just in time for Ava to enjoy a little bit of my virus.
So, by Tuesday evening Ava was not feeling well and a sick Ava is not a pleasant Ava by any stretch of the imagination. I made the executive decision that it was time to break out the Benadryl from its hibernation in the medicine pantry and dose Ava up so we can all get a good night sleep. She had a runny/stuffy nose and was tossing and turning and crying. That is when I drugged her. It was about 7:30pm. Well, by 8:30pm she was hallucinating. She was tossing and turning and crying this strange cry and talking jibberish. I layed with her and thought I got her back to sleep but she was pretty much awake until midnight when I climbed into bed with her. I felt badly for her, thinking she must have a really terrible cold to be acting this way. She continued to cry and toss and turn and act strangely until at 1am when I decided to evacuate Ava’s bedroom for hopefully a few hours of sleep before my 6am wakeup call. I thought it was strange the next morning that other than a little runny nose, Ava did not seem ill. That made me wonder if it could’ve been the Benadryl.
Obviously I was not convinced that Ava’s strange behavior was drug enduced since the next night, Wednesday, I again decided to give her a dose of the dryl to try and dry her up and give her a gentle push into slumber. Wednesday night was worse. Same tossing and turning and weird talk. At one point she was angry at me because “I asked you to go get me Barbarella and you did not get me Barbarella.” Who the heck is Barbarella and has Ava officially gone crazy? Hmmm. Well, after granting a few of her strange wishes I went downstairs at around 10pm. By 10:30 Ava was in my bed sleeping with me, an unprecendented move on my part. I was desparate. Around this time the skunk smell wafted over the bedroom, catapulting me out of bed and had me running for the door. I saw Sage sitting politely with her back to the door looking out into the evening. Maybe it didn’t have to be that bad, this horrid smell. Maybe Sage didn’t get sprayed this time. She looked so innocent sitting peacefully on the back porch reflecting on a summer’s night. So I let her in and as she ran through the house at 11pm, so did the horrible stench of skunk. Sage had her fourth encounter with a skunk this year and had gotten sprayed again. I promptly let her outside with her bed and would have to take her to get “deskunked” at the groomer the next day. The groomer is familiar with Sage and her skunk encounters. Unfortunately the babies were not having a good night’s sleep either. I was up with Preston at midnight and then Elsa right after that. I did not really sleep that night.
Violet is having binkie issues. She woke me up about six times before 11pm last night screaming because she couldn’t find her binkie and she wanted to let me know as loudly as possible. This is tricky when there are two other babies in the same room who are trying to sleep. So I jump out of bed and run with great speed up the stairs and frantically look in the dark for Violet’s binkie and plug it in that loud little mouth. So I think what we are going to do is take her favorite little pig that she sleeps with, fondles and chews on all day and night, and manufacture a way to attach the binkie to it so she can more easily find her own binkie in the night. Oh, flashbacks of Ava.
Enough about skunks and sleep. Fall is in the air and I am so excited about all the things that brings: Apple Hill for apple treats and pumpkins, Oktoberfest in our neighborhood, Halloween, the clean crisp smell of the change of seasons and the beautiful fall foliage. I am excited to take the kids to pick out pumpkins and to see them in their Halloween costumes.
This weekend we have the Special Care Nursery reunion at the hospital where we will bring all the kids and show them off to the nurses who took such good care of them those 3 weeks in the hospital. And then Monday night we leave for our trip down to SoCal and to Disneyland. I am keeping an open mind and I know no matter what happens that it will be an adventure — something fun to do to get out of the house. More on that later.
Until next time, the mothership is signing off.
Ronin Has Arrived September 14, 2008
Well it has been too long since my last post, mainly because we have a new addition to the family. Ronin Allen Hosseini was born on Wednesday, September 10th at 4:09pm. He was exactly the same size as Ava when she was born: 6 pounds, 13 ounces, 19 inches. He is a beautiful baby boy with dark hair and perfect little features. Molly is doing great and they are already at home settling into life with a new baby. Yesterday we took the whole family down to visit and Ava got to hold Ronin. She was a great big cousin. At times it was very loud in the house with 4 babies and Ava, which made me feel thankful and grateful for a house full of healthy babies. It should get interesting at holiday time and we can’t wait for the mayem that is sure to ensue.
The babies, who don’t have many outings as a threesome, were good on the trip to see their new cousin. The only problem we had was getting them to take their naps in a different environment. Violet had Ronin’s crib to sleep in and she was aware that it wasn’t her crib and got really upset and launched some adult sized tears from her little eyes. Preston didn’t have his glider, but he had a swing so I put him in there to nap and it took him about half and hour to fall asleep and he only slept for about 45 minutes. Elsa, who normally naps in a pack n play in our guest bedroom was trying to nap in Ronin’s pack n play but every time I walked by I saw hands and feet flailing around as she was just in there playing with toys. Needless to say, we had some very overtired babies last night but they were still good babies.
Friday night I had a Mom’s Night Out (MNO) with my triplet group. We don’t get together very often, maybe because we all have triplets :), but we had a great time sharing stories and pictures of our families. It is nice to spend time with a group of mom’s who have something unique in common and to learn their best practices for parenting three babies at one time.
Chris is out of town for the whole week again this next week and so I must go at it alone, with help from Nanny Laura and family and friends of course. I will be happy when Chris is home on Friday, that is for sure.
Until next time, the mothership is signing off.
Mark Twain On Triplets September 9, 2008
“Sufficient unto the day is one baby. As long as you are in your right mind, don’t you ever pray for twins. Twins amount to a permanent riot. And there ain’t any real difference between triplets and an insurrection.”
— Mark Twain
So I had to look up insurrection just so I had the correct meaning of the word and this is the definition: an act or instance of revolting against civil authority or an established government .
There isn’t a word in the dictionary to appropriately describe triplets plus Ava. Pandamonium???
Ava Turns 4! September 4, 2008
First, here are our family photos – stressful but worth it. And Brenda did a fantastic job managing all of us. To see them go to http://www.bisharatphotos.com. Then go to “enter site” and then to “proofing” and type in Woolsey7, which is case sensitive.
It is just amazing how quickly the years fly by and that my little girl is now 4 years old. We celebrated Ava’s birthday today with a small gathering of family and friends for a barbecue / pool party complete with balloons, cake and presents – all of Ava’s favorite things. Chris and I went back and forth for about a month on whether to get Ava her own fish tank as a present and a few days ago we decided against it. Her big present is a trip to Disneyland in a couple of weeks which I think we are all pretty excited about. The triplets will be staying with grandma and papa while Chris, Ava and I head to Disneyland for two full days of Disney splendor. I am sure Ava will be passionately hugging each and every one of those germ infested characters at Disneyland and that may just be her favorite part of the trip. Anyway, I digress on Disneyland. My point was that sure enough today at the last minute we ended up getting Ava a very cool fish tank with 8 little fish in it, including some Mickey Mouse fish. Very cute. Ava fed them before she went to bed tonight and loved watching them peck away at their fish food. Hopefully they won’t all be dead by the end of the week.
I was proud of Chris and I that we pulled it together to give Ava a nice birthday even though we feel so consumed most of the time taking care of the triplets and Ava. I think Ava got to have a very nice birthday and Disneyland will be the ultimate treat.
Last night Chris and I actually got out just the two of us to enjoy a friends and neighbors wedding reception. Lauri and Paul were married in Hawaii a few months ago and last night they brought together a nice group of people to help them celebrate their marriage. It was so fun to be around so many friends in the neighborhood that we don’t get to see often because of everyone’s busy lives, and share a few too many glasses of wine with them. It was nice just to be out on the town with my husband and enjoy a little kid-free fun. Thanks to my parents and Molly and Nima for coming to help with the possie.
Speaking of Molly and Nima, we are anxiously awaiting the birth of our nephew. His due date is today, the 7th, and he could possibly be born tomorrow on Ava’s birthday which would be interesting. We are excited for him to come and we can’t wait to meet him.
As I have spoken about before in this blog, I am part of a chat room of moms who have triplets up to a year old. It is a great group of women and we bitch and moan, we support each other and offer our advice and funny stories. A few days ago one of the moms suggested that we describe our baby A-C and their different qualities. Many of us did this and I think it made us all feel good to be able to talk about our babies born under unique circumstances. I know it put a smile on my face. This is what I had to say:
Baby A – Elsa – she is a little beauty and she is super easy going and curious. She has big brown and loves to watch everyone very intently. She loves to watch people chew their food. She only gets super mad when she is very hungry and her bottle doesn’t come soon enough. She is my acid reflux baby who has spit up massive amounts over the past 6 months and should have some developmental delays because of it, but so far she does not. She is my first and best roller, and my baby whose eye / hand coordination is fantastic. She has also hardly complained about any of the discomfort that comes along with acid reflux. She is a real trooper and very easy going.
Baby B – Violet – my red head who has a red hot temper to match. She smiles and laughes all the time and absolutely LOVES her older sister. They are red headed kindred spirits for sure. But when Violet gets mad she bunches up her face and screams a scream that I swear the neighbors 2 houses down can hear. She is very strong mentally and physically and was my first babbler. She is an excellent sleeper – sleeping 12 to 13 hours a night from 3 months old. She is going to have a big huge personality that only rivals Ava’s.
Baby C – Preston – my only boy and he is the sweetest most sensitive boy. He has bright blue eyes to die for and strawberry blonde hair. He was my only BFer for a while so I think we have a special bond because of it. He love love loves his momma. He is so sensitive that he often cries at new faces and if someone he doesn’t know holds him. Today he rolled across the whole room and landed on the wood floors. He was the last baby to babble and talk, but his talk is more like a screech that scares his sisters half to death. He is a cuddly loveable little chap.
I feel very lucky that all three of these babies are so easy going and able to entertain themselves. I can take them anywhere and they never complain or cause me a second of worry or stress. Sometimes I take a few minutes to think about how it happened that I had three babies at one time, any of which that could’ve been high maintenance or difficult or fussy or had cholic and all of these babies are so easy.
This may just be the easiest time period I will ever have with the triplets during this 6-9 month period when they are not crawling yet or walking but they are sleeping well and have happy little dispositions. In a few short months I will be chasing three babies around the house trying to stop them from putting everything in their mouthes and prevent them from opening every cupboard in the house and finding huge amounts of toilet paper crammed in the toilet. A year after that they will be throwing temper tantrums and probably fighting with each other over toys. After that they will be asserting their independence and using their mouthes in sassy ways that will have me dreaming of the days when parents washed mouthes out with soap. And all of this will be multiplied by three. But for now, I am going to enjoy my sweet, innocent, immobile little triplets and how their faces light up when they see me walk in the room.
Until next time, the mothership is signing off.