Leigha and the Triplets

Sunday, October 14, 2007

I Am Drowning!

I am starting to get way behind again! Things have just been absolutely crazy recently and it's not going to be letting up any time soon. I am just hoping I make it through alive.

Last Sunday, my aunt and uncle stopped by on their way home from Arizona. I love the fact that they stopped by after sitting in a car that long. The kids were so excited to see them. It was also strange because Noe was actually home. The entire family was home at one time, strange for us!

Our boys love books. I credit Noe with this. The boys love to circle around Noe and read to him or Noe will read to them. I am still amazed that the boys know their numbers up to twenty, their entire alphabet (upper and lower case), and can sign them all, too. It's so strange to think back to two and a half years ago, I was worried about the possibilities of brain damage. Not a chance!

The kids know their colors and can sign them all, too!

After story time, you have to have play time!

Look at Matthew GO!

Unfortunately, it's not as easy to practice sign language when using a walker rather than his scooter! Matthew cracks me up. We don't have a full length mirror in our house. Matthew found the next best thing. He rides his scooter into the kitchen and stops in front of the oven door. He then practices all of his signs. There are times where he sits there for about twenty minutes. It is so cute!

My stress level started to accelerate at a fast pace on Monday. Whenever the kids are all over us, Noe always makes comments about me and MY BIG IDEA! Most of the time we start laughing. At least when I do something, I go all out! Well, it doesn't seem to stop with the boys.

We have a new principal at our school this year. Our new principal and our old principal seemed to be polar opposites in many areas. Our new principal referred to this summer as our "dating" time. We were getting to know each other and we were finding out what she will and won't allow. I decided to test the waters. I asked her how she felt about after school clubs, like a sign language club. As most of you know, I am a bit of a Signing Time fan. I know, it's hard to tell, right? That day I learned something about my principal. If you mention something to her,and she likes it, you better be ready to GO, GO, GO!

I asked Noe if I could stay after school one day a week to lead a sign language club. He thought it was a great idea. As things were falling into place, I received an email from the Junior League of Las Vegas. They were taking applications for $1000 grants. HOW PERFECT! I had already received my letter, from Signing Time, giving me permission to use my DVDs in the classroom setting. Then I realized that I could buy pretty much everything that Signing Time had to offer! I had never written a grant before, so I was trying not to get my hopes up.

A few weeks ago, my idea really started becoming real. I received an email stating that I was being awarded the $1000 grant! I was beyond ecstatic. I was ready to make this club happen (it would have regardless of the grant). I purchased multiple sets of board books, flash cards, the entire first season, several copies of the practice time movies, and the new series. I decided to go ahead and make my first purchase before I received the actual check. I had a 30% discount code for being a teacher and I wasn't about to pass that up. I ordered $800 worth of products and then received $240 off of that. That means I still have $450 to spend. I am trying to hold out for the rest of Series 2 and then I will buy more board books (they are wonderful) and flash cards.

In the beginning I was hoping for 20-30 students. There had to be 20 or 30 kids who wanted to learn sign language. I would have held it for 5 kids, if that was all that was interested. It didn't matter to me, the fact that anyone wants to learn is just wonderful!

I sent the permission slips to every student from first grade to fifth grade. I gave them one week to get their parents to sign the permission slip and return it to me. I stated getting worried the next day. Every time I walked by my mailbox, I saw the pile of yellow papers growing. After a few days, I really started to freak out a bit. I decided that I could do 50 kids, at least I hoped I could.

My final count is 133 children. WOW! I knew I was in trouble. I came home and asked Noe if he would mind if I split my group in half and stayed after school on Mondays and Tuesdays. For anyone that is unfamiliar with our situation, Noe stays home with the kids while I work. He works Wednesday through Sunday. So his days off are Mondays and Tuesdays. He is also taking classes on Monday nights and Saturday mornings. This is already a hard year on him because of our switch to a nine month schedule. He is also not a big fan of "babysitting". He was quick to tell me NO! Then he turned around and stopped dead in his tracks. Noe turned back around and said, "Wait! If you have kids who want to learn sign language, then you should do it." That is HUGE for Noe, and anyone that really knows him knows I am not exaggerating.

I am also learning about the paperwork that goes along with having a club. Every student has to have Safe Key paperwork filled out and on file. That is in case of emergency and no one is there to pick up their child. They would immediately be checked into Safe Key (after school program for working parents). Unfortunately, they didn't have enough forms. The club starts TOMORROW! I don't have the paperwork completed because I still don't have all of the forms I need (they will be there when I get to school tomorrow).

I sent a letter home on Wednesday telling the students which day they would be attending. I also started that parents should arrive 5 minutes early so that they are there when their child is finished. If they aren't there, then the kids will have to check in to Safe Key. I can't wait around, I have to be home to relieve Noe for school. I am a bit nervous for tomorrow, since it's the first day and I have kids that CAN'T check in to Safe Key. I know I might have to sit around waiting for parents (Noe has the kids covered for tomorrow in case this happens).

In addition to this stress, our Moms of Multiples had their garage sale this weekend. I have been staying up until 2 a.m. several nights this week. I had to tag every item and get things ready to go. On Friday, my aunt picked Leigha up from school and took her to my house. She watched the kids while I took my van load of STUFF to the garage sale to set it up.

Here are some pictures that my aunt took while she was watching them. Robert must have been the last one to wake up!


My uncle sure knows how to get their attention. The boys love the Signing Time board books!

Robert took a LONG time to wake up!

Where is Leigha?

There she is!

Who needs a doll when you are a triplet?

Matthew loves climbing over the couch.

You wouldn't believe the size of the garage sale this time. My jaw dropped and I wasn't even the last of the people to drop off their items. The club was having a presale starting later in the evening. The general public would be invited the next morning.

Here are some pictures that my friend Michele took. It's a good thing she has a HUGE front yard (not too many people have that in this city).

Here is Michele with the 10 racks of clothing (and there were still a ton that didn't fit on the racks)!

On Friday, I left my house at 7:30 a.m. and walked in my door at 8:00 p.m. I went to bed around 1:30 a.m. and got up on Saturday at 5:00 a.m. I was working the first shift at the garage sale. Did I mention that Michele is about 30-45 minutes from my house? I ran home around 9 a.m., played with the kids, packed them up, and drove back to the sale. It was supposed to end at 12:00 p.m. That was a shame, as people were being turned away. I think the sale should be open to the public until 3 and possibly two days! There is NO WAY that we could have sold all of that in 5 hours.

The kids had a BLAST there! They aren't normally allowed out of their wagon. They were loving the freedom I gave them. They looked at the toys, they ran around all of the cribs, played in the rocks, etc. I brought Matthew's scooter with him so that he could have fun, too! He found the full length mirror in the garage and started practicing his signing. I am sure he thought it was much better than the dirty oven window. He was in that garage for a long time.

By the time I got the kids in the car, it was 2:00 p.m. They hadn't had lunch yet! It took forever to get home. By the time I had them fed and in bed, it was after 3 p.m. I was DEAD. I think I even felt worse than death. I decided to lie down on the couch, HUGE MISTAKE! I seriously felt like I was hit by a truck. I don't nap for that reason. It just makes me feel worse.

In addition to those 45 minutes I was lying down, I was also regretting a purchase I made. I bought an electronic bongo drum from Michele's husband. My friend Joselle and I split the two up and had fun dancing at the garage sale. I thought the kids would love it, and I was right. Unfortunately, my head was not loving it. I finally had to tell Leigha to get it out of there or she would never see it again. Normally I can zone out the musical toys, they don't bother me in the least. If I have happy kids, I can zone out anything now! That's the great thing about triplets, I hated the noisy toys when it was just Leigha. I have mastered the art of zoning out toys. It's not bothering me today at all!

Since the boys were so late going down for their nap, they didn't get up until after 6 p.m. Oh, and Matthew had NO food in the house. So feeling like death, I packed the kids up and went grocery shopping. We got home around 8:30 and started dinner. The boys didn't make it to bed until 10 p.m. I then had to clean out Leigha's room because my aunt and uncle were coming over, in the morning, to help put together Leigha's new bed frame. My aunt and uncle gave me the bed I used to sleep in whenever I visited my grandpa. I LOVED that bed! When I finally cleaned the room, I went downstairs and started grading papers. At least it was Saturday, I still had Sunday to get back on schedule!

This morning my aunt and uncle arrived at 10 a.m. We let them have fun for a few minutes before we put them to work!

I will post pictures of Leigha's new bed when I finish getting it all together.

It was time to head off to the Renaissance Fair. Noe took three days off to help out at the fair. A lot of the Cirque de Soliel employees volunteer there. We packed up the car and left. It was just coming up on lunch time. Here goes another day of a messed up schedule.

Noe and Leigha

Leigha with the King and Queen

The boys and I headed home after lunch. Leigha stayed with her dad to enjoy the rest of the day at the fair with him. Tonight I have to prepare for my big day tomorrow. I also have to prepare for the Student Council Pumpkin and Boo-Gram Sale! Did I mention I am in charge of Student Council? It's going to be a crazy week!


Suzanne said...

Oh my goodness, Cathy! What a crazy weekend! That garage sale looked amazing! Wish I lived closer!
Love the pic of Matthew signing into the oven door! Have a great week, and good luck tomorrow! Can't wait to hear about how it goes! You'll be great!
- Suzanne

Anonymous said...

You will do fine tomorrow. The kids will love it. HOpe you don't have to wait on any parents.


Anonymous said...

I just don't know where you find the time to blog!!


Kei said...

Oh Girl, you are nuts!!! Maybe that's why I like you so much! LOL You are so busy and yet you still find time to do so much! Thanks for taking the time to update your blog.

laraine said...

Good luck with the sign language classes. I think its fantastic that so many kids are interested in it. I'm sure you'll do great and the kids will LOVE the class because you're so enthusiastic about it.

Aren't you amazed how much they learn from the signing times DVDs. I know thats definitely where my boys learned the alphabet and colors.