Woolsey Family Chronicles

Documenting the journey of raising triplets and their wild big sister

A Big Blow Out . . . And I’m Not Talking Diapers June 29, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — The Hip Mothership @ 9:17 pm

Who knows what life is going to bring you each day when you wake up. Life seems to bring me an intesting combination of pleasures and disasters that keeps me interested and curious about what may happen next. One day I learn I am going to Paris for a week kid-free and on another day my tire explodes on the freeway while I am driving all the babies to My Gym class.

Okay, so I will back up and start from the beginning. Last Friday Chris took the entire day off so we could hang out together and take the babies to their My Gym class and then go swimming and just enjoy our day. Chris was meeting me in Folsom. As I was driving down Cameron Park Drive my “tire needs air” light came on. That light is always coming on so I didn’t think too much of it, except then I had the weirdest ESP moment. I most definitely had a very strong feeling that my tire was going to blow on my trip down to Folsom. Of course, I dismissed it. As I was driving 70mph on the Freeway I heard this big bam bam pow and I thought a rock hit the side of my car. I cursed to myself wondering what kind of damage that big of a rock could’ve caused my beautiful minivan. Then another bam bam pow and my whole car fell down on one side and I was virtually unable to drive it anymore. I tried very hard to make it to the next exit and off the freeway so I wouldn’t be stuck on the side of the freeway with my three 16 month old kids. But alas, the minivan wouldn’t go any farther. I pulled over as far as I could over the cement curb and into the tall weeds that line the freeway. The car was tilted sideways and for a brief moment I pondered the possibility of the whole car tipping over since there was probably no longer a tire on my front right wheel as it was. I quickly called Chris who was waiting for us at My Gym and told him to hurry himself on over to the side of the freeway and rescue us. No, we don’t have Triple A, but I had Chris who I thought could be to us quickly and maybe change the tire and save us on a towing service. Of course, on this Friday all the power was out in Folsom which meant that the street lights were not working and so it took Chris 1/2 an hour to get to us. While me and the babes sat on the side of the road leaning ever so slightly to out right, I sang every song I could imagine: Old McDonald, Wheels on the Bus which I thought was suitable for our situation, Twinkle Twinkle, You are my Sunshine which was too boring for our dire situation, and our favorite, If You’re Happy and you Know it Clap Your Hands. Preston was pissed. He has four molars coming in and he was in no mood to lolligag on the side of the busy freeway listening to my cheery songs. The girls took our misfortune in stride and enjoyed my singing and the crispy crackers I provided for our surprise adventure.

When Chris arrived after what seemed like an eternity we discovered that the door on the right farthest away from the freeway was no longer in service. The tire explosion had somehow disarmed the sliding door and so we had to get all the car seats out and then the babies out on the freeway side which, needless to say, was a bit dangerous. One by one Chris grabbed a car seat, hooked it in his car, and then one by one Chris grabbed a baby and hooked them up in the car. I then got in the car and drove them home. Meanwhile, poor Chris who had taken the day off to have some family enjoyment, spent the next four hours on the side of the freeway. He tried to put the spare on but that was fruitless. Then he called for a tow truck and they were quoting him 1 1/2 hours. Chris was not happy. He was starving, hot, tired, and generally weary of this stupid situation. He ended up waiting over two hours for the tow truck to come.

The Toyota dealership called at 6pm to tell me that it took four guys two hours to remove the shredded remnants of my tire from the rim. When I picked up my car the next day the service guy held up his cell phone and said, “maam, you had a hole this big in your tire which means a nail that big went into your tire and it exploded. It was crazy.” He doesn’t know how crazy it was really to be on the side of the freeway with a blown tire and three babies in the back looking at me like “what the f*@%k is going on?”

So that happened.

In other news, I am taking little Violet to the orthopedic pediatric doctor in Sacramento on Wednesday to find out what is going on with her left leg. I am pretty sure something is wrong with it but I am not worried about her. I think whatever it is is probably a result of being crammed in the womb and she probably needs some physical therapy and stretches to get it working properly. She can stand up and she can walk but it is hard for her and she doesn’t consistently walk. Something about that left leg is causing her problems. I can’t wait to find out what the problem is so we can start working on it and get Violet walking and running like her brother and sisters.

The best thing, in my opinion, about having multiples is watching them love each other and play and laugh together. The babies are playing more with each other each day. They make up games to play like their version of peekaboo and hide-n-seek. This morning Violet went and hid beside the bed where Preston and Elsa couldn’t see her. Then Preston and Elsa would run over and right before they would get there Violet would jump out and scare them and everyone laughed hysterically. This brings me so much joy. I love to see them enjoying each other and playing together. They will have a lifetime of playing and loving and fighting together and they will always have a special bond.

This past weekend Chris and I spent a lot of time in our swimming pool with the babies. They love to go swimming. They each have their own style in the pool. Elsa likes to jump off the side of the pool already and she enjoys spending as much time as she can under the water. Each time she goes under she comes up with a big smile on her face. Violet like to venture out in the water and float with her water wings. She flails around like a maniac sometimes in the water but you can tell she is having the time of her life. Preston prefers to stick close to the steps antagonizing everyone by splashing them with his shovels from the comfort of the top step of the pool. Chris retaliates by taking a bucket and flinging a massive stream of water at Preston and he laughs hysterically.

Ava is at Disneyland today. Gigi and Gramps took Ava to Yosemite where she had a nature camp and lots of swimming at the pool. From there they headed south to visit some old friends in Redondo Beach where she spend the day making sand castles. Today they are at Disneyland and Ava called me this morning to tell me where she was. What a wonderful time she is having and wonderful grandparents to take Ava and let her experience all of these wonderful places with them. The fact that Gramps is at Disneyland today shows how much he loves Ava since on the top of the list of things Gramps doesn’t like are lines and crowds. Ava is a lucky girl.

Until next time, the mothership is signing off.


16 Months Old Already June 22, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — The Hip Mothership @ 4:11 pm

As the cool spring mornings give way to warm summer days we have busier schedules and a happier mom. Right now I am sitting at a swim meet at 7am in tent city with my friends and Ava’s friends and we are getting ready to race. Ava has already informed all of her friends that she has come with her swim cap and she is going to win. She wanted to know if everyone was happy for her that she was going to win. Oy, I have my hands full with her. I just love the swim team and so does Ava. I sit around the pool on a nice morning and wait to be notified when Ava swims for exactly 1 minute and 18 seconds that it takes her to get across the pool to her self-proclaimed winning finish and then I head back to the tent to relax and read magazines or write my blog as I am doing today. Ava is a social butterfly and she makes some new friends and then she goes around introducing her new friend to her older friends . . . “Bella do you know Delaney?”
On the baby front, Elsa, Violet and Preston are 16 months old today and Elsa and Preston are FINALLY walking as their main mode of transportation. Elsa is saying new words and trying new things each day. The cutest word Elsie says is Sage; just the way it comes out of her mouth is so sweet. Our Elsie has really emerged as the ring leader of the pack which I didn’t predict in the beginning. Based on Violet’s strong and funny personality, I figured she would be the ring leader. Instead, Violet is more of an observer while Elsa is a doer, taking toys from others as she pleases and figuring out naughty things to do before everyone else. For example, we had to go to Home Depot on our date night and buy a large piece of wood and three ridiculous looking clamps to hold the piece of wood onto our gate at the top of the stairs. Months ago Elsa figured out how to slither her tiny body under the gate like a snake and climb up and down the stairs as she pleased. Then Violet copied her and I had two tiny creatures playing on the stairs and risking a big tumble.
Our little Violet still isn’t walking but she is still standing up by herself and trying to take some steps. She is either lacking the confidence due to her turned in feet or she truly has a problem with her legs or her feet. We continue to watch her closely and try to help her when she needs it but she still holds the title as the fastest crawler west of the Mississippi I am sure.
I signed the babies up for a place called My Gym. It is a cool indoor play/gymnastics class that is structured and created specifically for 14-22 month old kids. I was impressed with the teachers, the facilities and my kids who jumped right in there and utilized all the activities and tried the gymnastics. Elsa immediately latched on to the instructor at My Gym who is a man and followed him around the whole class pleading with him to pick her up and carry her around. She is such a lush. Meanwhile Violet is attached to me like a parasite lately. I am Violet’s partner, I bring Laura and she is with Preston and Elsa finds herself a man and forces him to be her partner. It works out great. I figured my Violet with her intense stranger danger may resist the teachers taking her and trying to make her do somersaults and hang on the parallel bars, but instead I could tell that she found it exhilarating. Ava gets to do so many fun activities in her life that I wanted to do something for the babies that would be good for their physical and social development.
While the babies do fight with each other a lot throughout the day, they also play nicely with each other and give each other a lot of love. Yesterday we took the babies to Costco, which we like to do. We put Elsa in her own cart because she is the disturber afterall, and Preston and Violet get to sit in the same cart together. While we pushed the cart up and down aisles, Violet and Preston leaned their heads in together and wrapped their little arms around each other giving love. Elsa gives a lot of love in between her thievery of toys. I also saw Violet and Elsa working together to play with a toy which was interesting. Violet would place a coin in the pig’s back but wouldn’t push it far enough down to make the fun noise and hear it crash to the bottom, so Elsa came in and precisely placed her pointer finger down the hole to push Violet’s coin down. It was a nice example of teamwork.
Ava leaves on her big road trip with Gigi and Gramps this week which will be fun. Ava gets to see things that even I have never seen such as Yosemite and Lake Arrowhead. She also gets to go to Disneyland. It is very nice of Gigi and Gramps to take Ava along on their vacation and Ava will love every second of it. We will miss her but she will be so well taken care of and having such a great time. You know, Ava needs to be kept busy all the time or we all go crazy! She still asks me two to three times a day, “mommy, who is coming today? And where are we going today?” She is concerned that her social calendar will not be filled to her satisfaction.
Meanwhile, Chris has been training with the Lymphoma and Leukemia Society’s Team in Training to run a marathon in October. He has also been eating very well and has lost 20 pounds in two months which has made him feel great. Chris is training with Bob Kott and Ed Smith for Team Trevor (www.trevorkott.com) and they will be doing some great fundraising activities to make money for the cause. Chris has been so dedicated to this marathon and this cause that he gets up at 5am some mornings to run his miles. I am proud of him for committing to this big run and for the wonderful cause. I will be sending out Chris’s fundraising letter for Team in Training in the next couple of days.
Ava-ism for today:
Ava was riding in the car with Gramps and Ava said “I love your combertivle Gramps.” Gramps quickly corrected Ava’s pronunciation of “convertible”. But Ava held strong and insisted that you pronounce it “combertivle”. Gramps asked Ava how she knows it is “combertivle” and not “convertible” and Ava said, “because my daddy told me that is how you say it and he is really smart because he can touch the ceiling.”

Hope all those dad’s had a great Father’s Day.

Until next time, the mothership is signing off.


Ahhhhh Pari . . . C’est la vie June 8, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — The Hip Mothership @ 4:10 pm

For the first time ever, I wrote a bunch down and added to my blog from this morning and I lost everything that I added. That does not make me happy. But what does make me happy is that Chris called a couple hours ago and informed me that he earned his company’s trip to Paris this August. A week in the wonderful glorious city of Paris paid for by Takeda Pharmaceuticals – a dream come true! So we immediately called the Domestics down in Southern California and told them that we won a trip to Paris and they won a trip to Northern California to watch all of our kids! They wanted to switch prizes but se la vie.

This morning I was thinking about how most people are sad when Monday rolls around and the weekend fun is over, but not me. I celebrate when I wake up on Monday mornings because that means I get my nanny back. Weekends in our house are busy, messy, crazy, sometimes boring if you can believe that. Weekends are good family time, but when the weekdays roll around I can actually have a few hours to myself here and there and my nanny’s are so great at helping with housework.

My kids are eating me out of house and home – whatever that old saying is supposed to mean I don’t know. But I buy so many groceries at the store and there isn’t any food that goes wasted in this house. At this point I think each of the babies eat more than Ava, which isn’t saying too much, but is still worth noting. Every night I fix dinner and cut whatever we are eating up into small pieces for the babies and they love it! They eat pretty much anything, but their favorite are pizza and pasta with meat sauce. I love cooking for people who appreciate my food! Every time I put dinner down on the table for Ava she says, and I quote, “Ewwwww, I don’t like this! I don’t want to eat this. Can you make me something else?” It actually kind of amuses me at this point. I don’t know what I would do if Ava didn’t find my meals so offensive and disgusting.

My little Violet hit a developmental milestone over the weekend and I was so proud of her. After determining that Violet may never walk, she decided to get up from the ground and stand on her feet and take six steps. I was blown away. How it happened is Elsa and Preston were walking back and forth and we were cheering and clapping and there was poor little Violet on the sidelines curiously watching as her brother and sister got all the accolades. All of a sudden it is like she just said “hey, I can do that!” and she went from sitting and got up on those little feet and walked. Then she proceeded to do it over and over and over again about 50 times because she decided it was a new skill that was quite fun.

So now it is like night of the living dead at my house. I’ll say “Violet, stand up and walk over here” and next thing I know all three babies have stopped whatever they were doing and are teetering toward me with their arms out, stiff legs and swaying all over the place. It is such a funny scene. Preston definitely looks like Frankenstein when he walks. They still use crawling as their major mode of transportation but this weekend I saw both Elsa and Preston walking to get from one place to another which was precious.

Ava has now had two swim races. I debated about whether to put Ava on the Shark’s Swim Team this year since she is only 4 years old and I was not sure if she would be able to emotionally handle going to swim practice every day and swim meets all day on Saturdays (not to mention if our family could handle it). I must say Ava has impressed me with her enthusiasm and her winning spirit so far. She got out there on both race days with a big smile on her face, ready to win! By the way, she still thinks she has won all the races she is in. Last Saturday the coaches put Ava in the backstroke for one of her races. Ava just learned how to do backstroke and it is shaky at best. She was nervous to do this stroke mainly because she thought that she may hit her head on the side of the pool. I remember worrying about that when I was a kid also. I asked that one of the coaches get in the pool with her and verbally guide her along and get her down to the other end of the pool to touch the side. All the other backstrokers were done a good minute before Ava but I was so proud of her because she stayed on her back and moved those little arms and made her way to the end all by herself. When she touched the wall the crowd cheered so loudly for her and I felt emotional because she tried her best and she did not give up or cry or complain. What more could I ever ask for? When she got out she literally thought that she had won that race and she commented how no one was even in the pool which she translated into a win for herself.

Along with the actual races, I also really think the process of race day is special for us. A lot of our neighbor friends are Sharks and so everyone sets up tents all around the outside of thle pool and I mooch off all my friends tents and the kids draw sharks all over their bodies, paint their nails the team colors, play games and just have fun all day in between races. I am so clueless about the process that luckily I have about four different friends who come running up to me when Ava is about to race. Phew.

So last night we went to a barbecue at the Kott’s house across the street and enjoyed their super delux awesome new outdoor kitchen and we brought all the kids. Luckily, the only way it works is all our friends who step in and help hold babies and watch babies. Bob Kott, Bob Gerstle and Ed Smith spent a good portion of their evening holding Elsa and Preston instead of relaxing and drinking their Sangria. Angela took Violet for me so I could eat in peace for a few minutes while Kathy and Heidi made sure my Sangria was close by and filled my plate up with more food. People I didn’t even know were holding Elsa at certain points in the evening because otherwise she would be trying to take a swim on her own in the pool. It takes a whole neighborhood to help the Woolseys go to a barbecue / pool party. We love you friends!

Lastly, I want to thank my husband for doing all of our dreaded household chores this weekend while helping so much with the kids. Oh, and thanks for winning us a week in Paris! You are the best.

Until next time, the mothership is signing off.