Saturday, December 31, 2011

Christmas 2011

We got back from our Christmas Adventures yesterday afternoon.
And as Todd and the kids unloaded the car, I started taking down the decorations because once I decide they should come down, every minute thereafter they only taunt me with their whole "your favorite time of the year is over but you're still stuck looking at the remnants and realizing how quickly time passes and that you're only getting older and you only have a few more years before your kids realize the truth behind all the Santa hoopla....." Or something like that.

So the house is barren until next December when we once again celebrate the miracle of Christ's birth.

But until then, 2011 was a good Christmas full of family and fun and really bad photography. Seriously. I have so few pictures to document this Christmas that I'm ashamed of myself. I would like to say it was because I was too busy living in the moment, but really, I just kept thinking I should go get the camera, but I'm too lazy right now.

I'll do better next Christmas. Promise.

Here's what I do have to offer in way of pictures:

The excitement of Christmas Eve and new pajamas (courtesy of Grandma. Thanks!!)

The infamous tradition of a Christmas Eve bedtime story (courtesy of Chips. Thanks!!)

Isaac playing with his new bay blades. (Courtesy of Santa)

Emma Grace and Cecile. (Again, courtesy of Santa.)

Me, in Todd's old ugly flannel shirt, and my babies on Christmas morning.

A diva and her daddy.

My beautiful baby sister with my beautiful and very tired baby.

Five of the seven Roberts grandkids in their new fun slippers. (Courtesy of Nana. Thanks!!)

So there you have it. 
Pictures of Christmas 2011 minus more than a few key players and moments. 

More to come on wrapping up 2011; right now new toys and games and three excited kids beckon me from the playroom.

I hope you and yours had as wonderful a Christmas as the Fischer Five were blessed to have.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Discipline Gone Awry

Gotta love a post about discipline, right?

Sometimes in our house we're really good about discipline. Sometimes occasionally we have those moments that would make the Super Nanny proud. You know, the moments where you stay calm, get down to eye level and gently and lovingly explain consequences while your child listens intently and shows exactly the right amount of sorrow and regret over their misbehavior. They then follow up with a heartfelt apology you didn't have to ask for and you have a beautiful hugging moment.....and the next time the camera comes around "two weeks later" even though you and your children are all wearing the exact same outfits, all your problems have magically been solved by a naughty mat......

Other times? 
Well, other times in our house discipline goes about like what happened last night:

The children had destroyed the play room and wanted to watch a Christmas video. After dinner, I told them to go clean the play room before they were allowed to watch the video. About two minutes into the supposed "cleaning" I hear Owen upstairs running back and forth on the landing and laughing hysterically.

Me: (yelling upstairs) Owen, are you cleaning?
Owen: (yelling back down) No.
Me: What did you just say?!
Owen: No. I not cleaning.

(Long Pause while I try to decide if I want to take the effort to go upstairs and effectively discipline)

Owen: Mommy? I say I not helping clean!
Me: (Obviously deciding I don't want to)  Great sentence Owen, but do you need a spanking?
Owen: No!
Me: Then you need to go help clean.
Owen: Okay, Mommy.

I hear him go into the playroom.
I hear some loud noises.
Emma Grace: OUCH!! Owen, why are you hitting me?!
Owen: Mommy said spanking.

And that, my friends, is how we discipline around here some nights. I know you're crazy jealous at how effective I am.

And no, because I know you're all wondering, I still did not go upstairs.

I know, I know - Mother of the Year Award?
Not sure if I'll ever earn it at this rate.

But maybe this tough little disciplinarian should?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Sometimes Fake Breasts are the Best.

Like my catchy title?

I'm posting this for a dear friend who reads this blog, who told me she always needs humor, and who is by far one of the bravest people I know.

You know who you are.

And I know you will still be the same beautiful person after January 5th as you are now.

And I hope you know I love you and I'm praying for you!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


If you're looking to waste some time and need a chuckle, google "awkward family photos." Hilarious.  And also scary because I'm pretty sure I had some of those outfits and could submit some similar pics.

I didn't have time to look through all the pages because I'm a busy mother of three.....and obviously I needed to get back to facebook and pinterest, but these two pics really made me laugh. A lot.

Who needs a five point harness if you have a bungee cord?
Baby in a Bungee

I'm a little bit sad I had my tubes tied because now Todd and I can't do this. And we would have looked good in this pose:
Pregnant and ???????


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Diva's Day

"It sometimes happens, even in the best of families, that a baby is born. This is not necessarily cause for alarm. The important thing is to keep your wits about you and borrow some money."
-Elinor Goulding Smith

 Seven years ago today this little diva made me a mom.

It has been the best and worst and most glorious and most frustrating role of my life. Someone, and I can't remember who because my brain cells have deteriorated with each child, once said that "being a mother is the hardest job you'll ever love."

True dat.

So happy birthday to my only daughter.
Without you, this house would have way TOO much testosterone flowing through it. And I'm pretty sure none of the boys would be as honest about how clothes look on me as you are.
I love you, sweet girl!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happy Referraliversary!


Has it been five years since I carried a picture around everywhere I went until his little body was safely in my arms?

Has it really been five years since my world was turned upside down by adoption?

Five years?!

Nope, Isaac.

I am thankful for YOU!

You are my sweet, silly, cuddly, burpalicious, happy, nintendo loving, hugging, active, goofy, not so little anymore boy.

You rock my world.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Deck Half the Halls....

We got most of the house decorated. 

And in true Rachel fashion, much to the chagrin of my mother, I've hit a standstill halfway through the project. The foyer is still littered with red bins waiting for inspiration to hit me again. I really do believe people can change, but apparently my lack of drive to finish a project I've started is still as strong within me as it was in high school. Sorry, Mom. I'll work on it.....eventually. By the time Christmas morning rolls around, the bins will be back in the attic where they belong. Although, maybe I should just leave them out until January when it's time to take everything down? Really that makes more sense. 


Welcome, December.
Please stay awhile. 
Don't fly by like you always do because then we're just left with January and cold and crowded gyms and broken resolutions. 

This week also brought coughing and fevers and a little something called pneumonia for this almost 7 year old.

And though she's most distraught about missing a week of school, her youngest brother has thoroughly enjoyed having her at home.

Here he is helping her work on sentences on the computer.

And here he is just looking cute. 
(At least that's my opinion.)

And here he is looking quite bored because I made his entertainment lay down for a bit.

December, you can stay with your lights and your music and your anticipation of family and good times to come.

Pneumonia, feel free to leave. Soon.
You have worn out your welcome.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Bring on the Holidays!

Thanksgiving has come and gone.

It was a great holiday, and it's passing means it is now officially time to fly my holiday freak flag. We will ignore the fact that it's currently 72 degrees outside and pull red rubber maid bins out of the attic. It's time to blast the Christmas tunes and curse the tangled mess of lights and figure out where everything will go in a new home this year.

However, I'm under very very strict instructions that I'm not allowed to do any of that until a yellow school bus brings home a certain pig-tailed beauty this afternoon. In fact, here is what I am allowed to do before she gets home:
1. go to the grocery store and purchase the hot chocolate.
2. I can listen to some Christmas music.
3. And if I absolutely can't control my urges, I can hang the stockings.

Here's what I'm not allowed to do:
1. Hang any lights.
2. Open any ornament boxes.
3. Anything else that has anything else to do with merriment and decorating without her.

(I don't usually let her make up the rules, but this is kind of our thing so I'll wait. The boys usually last about 0.34 seconds into the decorating and then the holiday decor turns into some sort of superhero weaponry.)

So, before the merriment begins at approximately 3:43 this afternoon, here's a recap of another awesome Thanksgiving full of food, fun, and family.

It started off with a rough transition for the youngest. The first morning he shut down, but after a few hours and the discovery of a nerf gun (thanks, Trevor!) he was back to his normal smiling self. Yay.

These boys were busy. Their shenanigans included, but were not limited to, wrestling, climbing dressers to try to turn on the television, torturing their sisters, wrestling, eating string cheese like it was going out of style, wrestling, boating, biking, wrestling, putting shoes on ceiling fan blades and then turning the fan on and watching them fly, falling into the pool while playing a game of frisbee, did I mention wrestling?, etc, etc.

I know. They look so sweet in the picture. Don't be fooled. :)

And these two girls?
They pretty much showed up at meal times and then disappeared again. They spent the majority of the trip downstairs for what my brother-in-law deemed "Full Contact Crafting."

The trip included venturing out to see holiday lights and attempting group photos.

Quick respite from photographing for an impromptu dance party....

And here are the hosts of the weekend with all six of their grandbabies:

Thank you Grandma and Chips for a wonderful Thanksgiving!! Thanks for the housing, the food, the frying, the new kicks for O-dawg, and especially for all the good laughs. 

We love you.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Nap? I Don't Need No Stinkin' Nap!

This is my third time around, Owen.

And I know you don't believe me, but I actually do know what I'm talking about. 
some of the time....

And yes, you still need to nap occasionally.

Otherwise, you just end up looking like this:

I'm just sayin'.

Don't give it up all at once. Maybe nap every other day or something?
Phase it out.

It will be easier on all involved.

And trust me, Mama knows best.

This ain't my first rodeo.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Dream

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Kissing Queen

"Mom, today on the field trip I couldn't tell anybody that my favorite part of the play was when the princess kissed the boy at the end because everybody else thought it was really gross. But I liked it."

Oh My.

Todd, we may need that shotgun sooner than you think.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

You have arrived at your destination.

Welcome to Norming. 

I'll be honest, there were days I never thought I would get here. I mean arriving in the land of Norming seemed as far away as my dream of going to Hawaii or getting to use the bathroom in peace, both equally impossible at this juncture in my life.

But one day a few weeks ago I woke up and thought wow, I think I might be there. I think it might be time to unpack my bags and settle in and stay awhile.

And for those of you who are confused, you may want to go back and read my post from that awful day in June To Publish or Not to Publish; the one where I ended up looking super cool laying on the floor of a hotel gym with my eyes swelled shut from crying. You may remember me discussing the four emotional stages one is likely to go through when getting the news that your child has special needs. Stages like mourning, storming, performing, and finally, oh finally, norming.

And I did each stage. Multiple times. Honestly, I think my husband tried to cheat and skip a few, but we decided that I traveled through each stage enough for the both of us. I cried and gnashed my teeth. I (and I'm really not proud to admit this) resented other families with "typical" two year old's. I cried for the struggles Owen has now and will continue to have in the future. I got angry with God. (In fact, we had to take a time out for awhile. And thankfully that doesn't mean I stopped believing in Him and His power. I made sure He still heard about Owen, just not through me. It was the kind of timeout where you text a friend and say something really mature like "Hey, could you pray for Owen for me? I'm not talking to God right now." And the friend would write something back like "yup, got you covered" because she understood that I needed to be angry and I would come out the other side of it feeling even closer to Him. And I did.) I did the storming and the researching and the googling and the trips to the special needs section at the library and the educating. I did the performing. I called multiple doctors and therapists and schools and we have a kick-butt team now. Everybody is working together and my lil' man is making some serious progress and it feels good. But acceptance feels even better than his progress. Acceptance that progress for Owen looks a lot different than progress for another child and that is perfectly okay. Acceptance that one day he will be feeding himself and using the potty, but it might not be one day soon. Acceptance that one day he may go to a birthday party and play with the other kids there, but it might not be one day soon. Acceptance that other two year old's may be more verbal and may not be obsessed with spoons and may be more "typical" but every kid is special. And my Owen? He's special in a way that makes him who he is. And I love who he is. And God knit him together in my womb and I don't think he messed up one teeny-tiny little bit. 

So am I in Norming? 

I think so, peoples. I think I've learned that norming doesn't mean I never have a moment of grief or that I never read another article or question a doctor. I think Norming means knowing this is life now and coming to love it despite its difficulties. I think Norming includes occasional fears about the future, but overall, greeting each day with hope and trust.

So we're going to unpack our bags and stay awhile in the land of Norming. We're going to continue praying and brushing and wrapping and feeding and medicating and researching and knowing that, despite all the "atypical," this life that Owen leads is going to be a great one. 

We accept.

We hope.

We norm. 

And dang it feels good.

"Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at it destination full of hope."
Maya Angelou  

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Big Day

Any guesses what we did today?

Actually, before we made that mess in the bathroom, we did some of this:

Yup - that's my boy feeding himself with a spoon for the first time. Look at that wide open mouth and the tongue that is down and not curled up at the back of his mouth. That's just a whole lot of awesomeness right there! 

Then later in the day after naps and runs, my middle kid decided he wanted to say goodbye to his curls. And then of course his baby bro, who wants to be just like him, wanted to say goodbye to his hair too. And I thought I would be sad, but we literally had a hair cutting blast. I haven't laughed that hard in awhile. And even though they both look older, they are still pretty stinkin' cute.

And I know Owen will probably kill me for this one day, but I had to show off his outfit. He now has to wear this compression on his torso 30 minutes on, 30 minutes off all the live long day. And when he didn't want to put it back on tonight, his brother (and idol) told him he looks like a superhero in it. Thank you, Isaac!! You absolutely amaze me with your sympathy towards others and the way you always want to help Owen.

So here's my little superhero showing me his muscles:

And here he is putting plastic knives in the VCR. (Apparently his super power is putting things where they don't belong when he thinks Mom's not looking.....)

And what was the diva doing during all her brother's hair cutting shenanigans?

Coloring quietly in the corner, of course.