Valentines 2015

Valentines 2015

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Mommy, you graduated from homework!

I spent the last 3 years of my life pursuing my Master's degree.  I figured that I should probably decide what I wanted to be when I grew up, and for the first time in my life I actually thought that working in management for the rest of my life sounded good.  Really?  Who says that?!  So, I set to work pursuing my degree in Healthcare Operations Management.  I am thrilled to have finally met my goal!

Now that I'm done I have absolutely no idea how I found the time to work on my Masters with 3 young children in the house.  Late nights, busy nap-times, and 11:55 PM deadlines were the norm. I wondered if the kids would even remember that I went to school when they were little.  As graduation loomed near I learned that my going to school left a profound impression on the kids. First, it taught them perseverance - things may get hard and you may want to give up - but you have to keep pushing through. That have since applied this to their violin lessons.  Sweet! Second, it taught them humility, they couldn't always be #1 and sometimes Mom's needs had to go above theirs.  This is very difficult for children to understand.  And finally it taught them the importance of education- a degree/education is something no one can take away from you.

I never would have been able to complete my degree without the sacrifice and commitment from my family. Si has been nothing short of amazing over the past three years. You need to study?  No problem, take the time you need. You need to go meet up with classmates to figure out how to get through Data Analytics or Turning Data Into Information and be gone for 5 hours?  I'm happy to support you.  AMAZING.  I love this man to pieces.
I spent at least 4 nights a week, after the kids went to bed or while they were napping, studying and completing papers and homework.  Clearly the kids noticed.  When they came to graduation and saw me get my degree Bri said "Mommy, you just graduated from homework didn't you?".  Why yes sweet child, I did.
Check that off the bucket list.
On to the next!

Until next time~

Friday, February 12, 2016

To Separate, or Not to Separate?

I feel like I haven’t talked to you guys in forever! In truth, it’s been quite a long while. So sorry! When I started taking my Master’s classes (way back in 2013!) I quickly cut down on my blogging.  That’s sad though, because I have SO much to say!  LOL. First things first, I will be done with my Master’s in May, thank goodness, and then I will have part of my life back! I’m glad that I went back to school but absolutely underestimated the amount of time it would take me to do an online degree program.  I’m happy to be done.  Well, almost done.

In the meantime, there have been lots of happenings in the Hollibaugh household.  Hudson is 3.5, and a heart breaker! He’s the sweetest most ornery kid I think I’ve ever met.  I go between wanting to hug and snuggle the crap out of him and wanting to hang him by his toenails.  LOL.  If only I was kidding. The girls (Livvy and Bri) are now 5, and could not be more different.  Olivia is a total girly girl princess who never stops talking (ever) and Brianna is a super creative total tomboy who loves to do things on her own.  Honestly, they complement each other perfectly! HA! 

What I’d like to talk about today is school, and to separate, or not to separate your multiple’s in the classroom.  First, what we’ve done.  Olivia and Brianna are in their second year of Montessori.  The Montessori they attend has 4 preschool classes, so we were given the option to keep the girls together or split them.  Year one we decided kept them together in the same classroom.  It seemed to go really well, but at the end of the year, Bri asked to be in a different classroom than her sister.  We weren’t sure if it was just a fluke thing as she’d been pretty happy being in the same class for most of the year, but we were also unsure about keeping them together anyway (many opinions in the multiples community), so we quickly agreed to separate.  This year they have been apart.  While the teachers seem to think that the girls are both doing very well in separate classrooms, that is not really the same sentiment I am getting from either of the girls.  In fact, Olivia and Brianna have both requested to be together in the same classroom again next year.  Okay kiddos, noted.  Honestly whatever they want to do is okay with me.  We don’t have a guidebook for twins (wish we did sometimes!) and frankly I’m okay with the girls calling their own shots with this.  After all, it affects them a whole lot more than it affects me!

So twin and triplet mommas…..what did you do with school?  Or what do you intend to do?  Keep them together?  Split them up?  And why?  Has it worked well? Or not?  Tell me your stories!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter Friends!

Happy Easter 2015!

This year we got to see and cuddle REAL bunnies!!!  It was so precious. The kids could hardly contain themselves, so not kidding! I think the photographer probably had to edit or throw out at least 25 pictures of the kids with their mouths wide open because they were so excited!!

Olivia and Brianna, Age 4.5, Hudson, Age 2.75

Livvy alone with her bunny - note the mouth wide open ;)

Bri alone with her bunny ;)

Hudson alone with his bunny;)

Hope you have a very blessed holiday with you and yours!


Friday, February 13, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day 2015!

Valentine's Day is my favorite holiday.  Truly it is.  And it's not because it's a ridiculously commercialized holiday where flower shops can charge 4x the normal charge for flowers, mylar balloon sales are in the millions, or because couples go out to expensive restaurants to show their apparent love for one another.  No.  Although I DO love a good meal, that is the opposite of why I love Valentine's Day.

I love Valentine's Day because it is the one day each year that people are encouraged to focus on the love they have for one another and show each other how much they care.  Please note - this doesn't have to be anything romantic.  I mean sure, there are hearts and cupid and arrows and lips all over the place to designate the Valentine's holiday, but truly, I think Valentine's is more about showing others how much you care about them.  Every year I make little gifts for my unit staff for V-day.  This year I'm doing heart coffee cups filled with chocolates.  YUM.  And the point of me doing this is, my staff know that I truly care about each one of them and they ARE appreciated.  I know they really enjoy getting something at work on Valentine's Day (who doesn't?!).

So....Happy Valentine's Day to YOU!  I hope you know that I care about you, and thank you for reading my blog =).  Be sure to tell the people in your life how much you love them and care for them.  That's truly what V-day is all about! My kids share my love of Valentine's Day and even had pictures taken to commemorate!  They wish you a Happy Valentine's Day as well! Hope your day is awesome!

Until next time -


Thursday, February 5, 2015

Everything Changes (when all I really want is for things to stay the same)

Props to the stay at home moms out there.  Props to the stay at home moms who have husbands that travel.  And even bigger props to the military families that have to run as single parent families while one parent is off defending our country.  I have a whole new respect for what each of you go through day in and day out.  Wow.  That is all.  What a different perspective.

Si took a new job in December.  Truth be told, he had to.  He was laid off from his previous job. They told him in October.  I'm still not sure why they let him go.  Maybe they weren't busy enough. Maybe Si was too expensive of an employee.  Maybe Si didn't do the paperwork the way they wanted.  I don't know.  Si took a new job December 15th.  Since December 15th he has been out of town for 9 days (8 nights).  Soon he will go out of town again, but this time for two weeks straight.  TWO WEEKS.

That means, for that two week period, I am a single mom to three young children.  A single mom who is also working full time, going to school, running the social events for our non-profit multiples organization, trying to make it to violin practice on time, doing a gazillion loads of laundry because the girls HAVE to wear three outfits a day and (surprise!) one of the kids peed the bed (again), and I'm trying to find time to cook a wholesome meal for my family (screw it, we may live on mac and cheese and hot dogs while Si's gone!).  It is exhausting.  I have a whole new respect for single parents, I truly do.

My post for the New Year introduced my word for the year: Joy.  Finding joy in the little things.  But holy is HARD.  I know my kids are growing at the speed of light.  I know soon they will be in school and won't want to hang out with me at. all.  But for now, I am having difficulty having fun being a mom.  I'm probably too busy.  I get that.  I did that to myself.  I do have to work full time, so that's a given, but school?  Is that really necessary?  What about my volunteer work?  If I gave some of these other things up, would I be better able to find the joy in my kids???  I'm not so sure.

How on earth are you supposed to know if you are doing the right things?  How do you decide what is most important? I know I am asking questions that don't have any real answer, but it's helpful to know that I'm not the only one thinking this stuff. I'm not, am I?! This mom gig is hard!!

I will leave you with a picture of each of the all of their growing-up-too-fast goodness.

Mr. Hudson - Age 2.5

Miss Olivia (left) and Miss Brianna (right)- Age 4

Have a great weekend peeps!

Until next time -


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A Look Back, and a Look to the Future

As I look back on 2014 I see a year filled with many new adventures:
  • The girls first day at Montessori
  • Attempting to potty training a boy (they want to stand! Eek!)
  • My first time actually eating sushi (and liking it!)
  • SCUBA diving in Jamaica (and LOVING IT!)
  • Swimming with the dolphins
  • ”Single parenting” for a week while Si was out of town on business
  • The kiddos trying crab legs for the first time (check that – hoovering 2 lbs of crab legs)
But it was also a year full of endings….
  • My last nursing session with Hudson
  • The girls last day at their preschool down the street, and the loss of new friends
  • Our last ladies night in our neighborhood (after several awesome neighbors moved away)
  • Selling the girls cribs, Hudson’s baby clothes, bottles, and toys
  • The realization that I will probably never have another itty bitty baby of my own to snuggle, nurse, or wake up to at 3 AM.
“The ending of an era, and the turning of a page” as Tim McGraw would say…

So what is my focus for 2015? 
I saw a blog post a couple of years ago (when I still had the time to read blogs daily) where the writer chose a word or two to focus on for the upcoming New Year.  I think it’s a great idea, and I’ve decided to take on the challenge.  My word for 2015 is JOY.  I am going to make it my mission in 2015 to find JOY not only in the things I do, but especially within my interactions with my children.
Like any parent, I get frustrated with my feisty, often back-talking 4 year olds, and it keeps me from focusing on the good that they bring to my life.  It is amazing to see the world through the eyes of a child.  Christmas was a great example of that.  Oh how their eyes lit up when they met Santa and again Christmas morning when they opened their gifts – AMAZING! 
This year I intend to focus on understanding my children, their needs and aspirations, and try to harness the JOY that they bring me each day.  It’s difficult to parent toddlers and preschoolers.  I know it is.  But truthfully it’s not going to be anything compared to parenting teenagers.  I am not looking forward to that one bit.  I can truly see the importance of shaping and reinforcing now the behaviors I want them to display in the future, while I still can. 
To be perfectly honest, changing their behavior means checking my own behavior at the door before trying to correct theirs.  I have this habit of yelling at my kiddos when they aren’t listening.  Sound familiar?  Yelling at my children doesn’t stop them from yelling, or make them listen to what I am saying.  Instead, it shows them that it is okay to yell when they are upset, and it may even show them a “scary” side of mommy.  That’s not how I want my kids to see me.  I want them to see me as someone they can trust, someone they can talk to about anything, someone they can bring their concerns to. Not someone who is going to yell at them or blow them off because I am frustrated, busy doing something else, or don’t care what they have to tell me (for the 7th time today). 

I hope to show my children more patience.  And I hope to be able to spend time with them while they still want to spend time with me.  I know my time is growing short to be able to spend good old fashioned quality time with my kids.  They will soon be introduced to the world of school, commitments, and ultimately other kids.  I want to make sure my kids really know that I love them and want to be with them and think they are great! It shouldn’t be too hard of a goal to reach, right?

Here’s to 2015!
What is your word (or words) for 2015?  Why did you choose it?
Until next time –

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Me oh my - look who is 2!!!

"Baby" Hudson turned 2 about a week ago.  Seriously, I think he is going to be "Baby" forever.  I've tried to tell him that he's my "big boy" but he wants absolutely nothing to do with that.  Nope, he's my "baby" (secretly don't mind a bit!) and the girls still refer to his as "Baby", so I think the name just might stick for a while! Poor kid.  He will be walking around kindergarden still being called "Baby"....

We were just in for our 2 year checkup on Monday, and his stats crack me up. He is big for a boy, but smaller than the girls were at 2 years old - a full inch shorter and about 3.5 lbs lighter!  This should be fun when they get older....hopefully he has a chance to outgrow his sisters sometime....otherwise it's hard to justify telling him not to hit his sisters when they tower over him;-).

Anyhow, on to Hudson's 2 year stats:
Height - 36 inches - 90th percentile
Weight - 31 lbs, 2 oz - 83rd percentile
Head Circumfrence - 47.5 cm - 71st percentile
Diaper size - 4, size 5 at night.
Clothes size - 24 month and 2T

Just for comparison purposes the girls were:
Height - 37" (99th percentile)
Weight - 34lbs 7 oz, and 34 lbs 14 oz (99th percentile)
Diaper size - 5
Clothes size - 3T

I continue to be amazed by how much different boys are than girls.  Mr H is so affectionate and lovey with me, I just love it.  He is still nursing first thing in the morning and before bed, and I'm having such a hard time weaning him.  Not only does he love to nurse, and not only do I love the time, but he really doesn't like milk so I don't think he would  be getting his necessary calcium if he wasn't nursing.  Si and I are taking a 10 year anniversary trip back to Jamaica later this summer though and we will be gone for a week, so he will need to wean sometime soon.  He's just my baby.....and I don't know that I'm ready to wean either! I'd love to have my body back, but.....

As usual, there's lots going on here.  The girls are doing Splish Splash summer camp this week at their new Montessori, and they are loving it.  I'm so never know what the response will be to an all new situation and location.  I'm thrilled they are enjoying it.  They also don't seem to mind that they are going to school/camp everyday.  They are getting upset that Hudson is getting to do fun stuff with the nanny while they are at school, but they would still rather go to school, so that's a definite WIN in my book!

Okay, I've got to be boring you with my rambling.  So thrilled summer is here, and I hope you guys are outside enjoying it just as much as we are here!

Until next time -