29 June 2012

An Update From a Lazy Blogger

I wish I had an excuse other than, "Dude, I'm busy!" We wake up around 6am and do breakfast, dog stuff, kid stuff, work stuff. By 10am Claire is a crab and wants to nap, but we have to push her to at least 11:30. No computer time there...
Once Claire's down Lucy and Mo just want some quiet time with Mama. Well that's fine, but it's hard to bond over a computer. So that's out.
When Claire gets up, anything I had in mind for the rest of the day is put aside for Claire. that includes using the bathroom, making dinner or thinking through a blog post.
By the time we GET to dinner, it's actually bedtime and then I really don't feel like I can say, "Well, I'm off to  blog!" and anything I had thought about writing earlier pales in comparison to our exhaustion anyway. We're at that magical point in our lives where we look at each other and the conversation goes something like this:

L: What are your plans for the night?
A: I was going to read, but we could do something else.
L: You could read and I could do something else.
A: Like sleep?
L: Yeah.
A: Okay, I'll do that too.

Blogging requires me to move my fingers AND use my brain at the same time, but sadly that kind of multitasking ended with the advent of the 3rd child. Besides, my hands work all day. The last thing they want to do is type after 8pm.

But here I sit. I don't even have anything funny to say. I'm sorry. I know I can usually give you something, but all I've really got for you is boring updates.

I'll just comment on a few things and let you go.

TWINS! AhHhHhHhHhHhhhhhh!!!! We are at 14 weeks and feeling...fine? The morning/all day sickness is pretty well behind me for now, although that'll come back in the 3rd trimester. The exhaustion really only comes after I do something. Anything. As in, I'm totally fine if I do absolutely nothing all day long, so...I'm tired almost all the time. The reason I'm awake right now is because Andrew and I watched two episodes of Once and played around with 100 Floors for awhile and it was only 9:45, so we rallied and he's reading and I'm not unconscious!
We have another appointment on Tuesday and will be seeing some longer arms and legs, which is totally thrilling. I'm not really feeling much movement yet, so now we're in the "eh" phase of the pregnancy. Just sort of sitting around between the yucky early weeks and the exciting weeks of wiggling.
Names? No. That's a big "fail" at this point. I'd imagine we'll be taking a list to the hospital like every couple who has already named a bunch and has two more to name.
We are a mere month away from our 'Babymoon,' as everyone but US is calling it. We made plans for a vacation months and months and months ago. You know, drinking on the beach and not caring if we come home with a souvenir baby? Riiiight. As it happens we'll be NOT drinking on the beach while we gaze in horror/wonder at the ridiculously immense beach ball that is housing the stowaways. Boy, if anyone knows how to travel and drink on the beach, it's us!

28 June 2012

Me and shaggy Mo

Just, you know, hanging out at 920PM, drinking hot cocoa...!!?? Such a bad dad... Lu is here too and wants to know how to drink without getting burned. LOL. So cute.

26 June 2012

Molly @ Midnight

So, Molly at 3.5 years old simply cracks us up. She is so funny but when she is especially comical is when she lacks sufficient sleep. ie. when we have to skip naptime or wake up early to go somewhere, etc. So, I decided in the vein of her comedic nature, to try and capture some of her silliness in a new series I'm going to call...
Molly @ Midnight!
Her mind is running a mile a minute just like her little body all day... so, you may ask (I do)... What does this 3.5 year old think about all night? We're going to find out. She opens  this series with a real zinger!! Welcome to the first edition of Molly @ Midnight (special feature exclusive the the P&B Cooke Family blog)

I suppose we must tell her to 'sit down' a lot :-P


25 June 2012

A little outdoor time before we hit the 100's!

Refrigerators and Freezers

Dear "Corporate Facility Supervisors" of America... Please take note that your job is seriously not THAT important.
  1. It is inappropriate & unnecessary to write in CAPS.
  2. It is inappropriate & unnecessary to write in bold;
  3. It is inappropriate & unnecessary to write in italics;
  4. It is inappropriate & unnecessary to write in red font;
  5. It is inappropriate & unnecessary to write in underlined font;
 Or any combination of the above, especially when all you're talking about is refrigerators and simply taking your food home with you on a Friday.
Best regards,

From: Facilities

Sent: Friday, June 22, 2012 12:54 PM
Subject: Refrigerators and Freezers

All Employees:

Please take everything home with you that you want to save by Friday, June 22nd as the cleaning company will be thoroughly cleaning the refrigerator/freezer in each break room over the weekend.  EVERYTHING left in the refrigerator AND freezer will be thrown away at this time labeled or not.  Notices will be placed on all refrigerators/freezers as a reminder.

Initially, it may seem wasteful to toss unclaimed food, but consider the following:

  • Unsafe "mystery" food (no name/no date), that is taken from the refrigerator and offered to others, may make people sick.
  • More money is lost when food is left in the refrigerator to spoil than if people learn to eat it in a timely manner.
  • When a refrigerator is filled with unsafe foods, there's a possibility an unsafe food will contaminate other foods, especially if foods are squeezed together to fit everything into the refrigerator.
 If you have any questions or concerns please let me know.

Thanks for your help and cooperation


Corporate Facilities Supervisor

Important Notice: This message may contain COMPANY Privileged/Proprietary information. If this email is not intended for you, and you are not responsible for the delivery of this email message to the addressee, do not keep, copy or deliver this email message to anyone. Please destroy this email in its entirety and notify the sender by reply email. Your cooperation is appreciated.

23 June 2012

A Sweet Date and a Sweet Surprise.

This week was harrowing. In a good way, of course...I think. :-) Tonight Andrew and I were able to get out for a much-needed date night, wherein I mostly apologized for being a hormonal witch and he just smiled and nodded because he's a gem and has been through this before.

Our date money actually went to Claire's major bleeding event last week, so we agreed to keep things casual  and easy on the pocketbook. We went to Kincaid's for burgers and then walked around Ulta and Best Buy. I replaced my shattered glass nail file and we bought a few items to prepare for a super adventure that is happening as we speak. I know. Pins and needles, right?

So we returned home with two very sleepy gals and left one with Charlotte for the night. Molly was jazzed at the thought of sleeping in "Hoocie's bed" for the night, try as we might to convince her to snuggle in our bed for the night.

We checked the mail when we pulled up and were greeted with a delightful surprise. "Someone who reads your blog" sent us a lovely letter and a sweet gift card. Do angels send gift cards???! We have been met with the most overwhelming summer yet and I think we both feel our heads spinning with the energy we're using just trying to keep things straight. It was just such a wonderful little interlude in the middle of all of that listing and counting and planning and sighing. We have always been blessed with wonderful gifts from God, but even the most blessed and fortunate find themselves among those who wonder if things will ever straighten out again. Our faith has always been such a boon in this area, as tiny blessings happen to us when things tighten up.

When we were just starting out as a very young family, money was often so tight that we'd just agree to hope for the best and assume that God would provide. About once a month or so, in those last days before payday, we'd receive $20 in the mail from a dear, dear friend. Her notes would say, "Take yourselves out to lunch!" "Go out for some ice cream together!" We almost always used those little gifts for essentials, so thrilled that the Lord spoke to her right when we most needed it. Little did she know that she was helping us keep food on the table!

This felt a lot like that. In the middle of a week where ends were just meeting, we decided to splurge on a date that we probably shouldn't shell out the cash for, but that our marriage and friendship so desperately needed. And we came home to a gift card in the amount that we had just spent on our marriage. So, dear friend, you have given help to one of the most crucial and endangered parts of our society: Young, faithful, Christian marriage. What a blessing you've been to us! Thank you! <3

99 degrees

But she's still rockin' the Beanie!!!

22 June 2012

When it's 96 degrees and your trainer pushes you back in the door...

...you might look a little like this.

There are very few things in life that can make me smile while I'm still sitting at my desk at 4:30PM (note: not military time!) on a sunny Friday afternoon. This g-chat message is one of them:
Laura:  are we 100% sure that stone hasn't pooped out that corn dog stick?

From VBS

Lucy pulled this out of her bag and said, "We even got a picture of Father Hart!" Hahahahaha!

Stone's addiction...

Is speeeeed! (And wind)

Yesterday's drive home from the vet caught via terrrrible BB Curve camera!

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

21 June 2012

Molly's apple pie...

Laura: Girls, what do you want for lunch?
Lucy: Chicken noodle soup!
Laura: Okay...Mo? (Mo hates soup)
Molly: Got any apple pie? 
Laura: Umm....no. Sorry. 
Molly: Are you KIDDING me!?!?
Laura: No. 
(Please note, Molly has never tasted apple pie and is now eating a bowl of cereal.)
I sat down to email this comment because I thought it was hilarious, and Lucy said, "What are you doing?" I responded, "I'm emailing Daddy about Mo's apple pie because I thought it was funny." 
Molly yells, "WAIT, WHAT?!?!?! DO WE HAVE APPLE PIE OR NOT!?!??!" 
I guess the term "Mo's apple pie" threw her.
And I still have no idea why she wants apple pie. 

Creative Minority Report: Wow! Must Read from a Fed Up Priest

Whew. Killer article.



Well, today is Day 4 of Vacation Bible School: Vatican Express! As you'll note, I'm blogging. From home.

I have been volunteering in the nursery, which is great because I get to hang with Claire all day, but it's a lot of up and down off the floor all day, plus holding kids, picking people up, etc. And to top it all off, I have to walk back and forth between the nursery and the formation building several times, which starts to wear me out.

When I found out I was expecting the twins I was told to rest twice as much because I'd be twice as tired. That's totally true. I can feel great all morning and then I'm suddenly too exhausted to stand up. And when I lay down, my entire body throbs and my head pounds. It feels like I've been running for hours, and I never really know what my threshold is on any given day. Apparently 3 days of VBS was it, so we're taking today off to enjoy a quiet day. Molly is still passed out cold at 8:40, and Lucy is still in her jammies, watching Wild Kratts. I really have no plans to do anything more than make peanut butter and jelly for lunch. And that may be a stretch.

Lucy has been asking me to move all of the girls' clothes to the dresser in their room so that they can get dressed in the mornings. Sounds good to me! The only problem is that I'm going to have to take all the random junk out of that dresser...and that sounds like a major pain. Easter decor, tools, broken toys, etc. On the outside I'm the picture of organization. On the inside of every drawer is a different story. :-) So Lucy and I may work on that today. It would be cool to get the girls to the point where they can make their beds and get dressed without assistance in the am, and I think I'm going to label our small laundry baskets so that they can put their own clothes away. The biggest problem is that I'm folding clothes in the family room and then hanging them in the bedroom, and I'm just running out of opportunities to do double the work anymore!

So, I have to go. A large, cozy sectional is calling my name and I see two chunky baby thighs waiting for me to nibble at them!

20 June 2012

15 June 2012


I do not sit with the laptop on my lap until 8pm. If I use the computer during the day, I stand at the kitchen counter. When I finally get a second to sit down at night, it feels AMAAAAAAAZINNNGGG...My feet do this thing where they sigh and just sort of die of happiness.

Today was long. Even with the grocery shopping and severe bleeding episode, it was long. It seems like the days pass SO SLOW during the summer. I enjoy the summer, but I don't think I'll enjoy this one. I really, really, really want to go on vacation and meet these babies. The rest of it can just go away. I can't believe I still have two more trimesters. And really, a third of the first trimester doesn't even count because you're not really pregnant yet anyway. Blah.

My Mama is at a conference this weekend so it goes to voicemail when I call her. Talk about discombobulating. Where on earth am I supposed to direct my random observations all day long? Is my phone going to ring as much as hers does someday? If the twins are girls I would say that my biggest expense over the next 40 years will be my phone bill. Even with three I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to keep regular office hours to keep everyone straight. Office hours would be a fantastic way to manage them all. They can each have a 15-minute window once a day to discuss new business and ask for money, and then Andrew and I can have a weekly meeting to keep everyone straight and decide who is in our favor.

Claire's finger is looking...okay? I devised a fantastic bandaging system and am really patting myself on the back for it. I'm using an adult-sized butterfly over the top and around the sides and then double-fastening it with one of those plastic Band-Aids; you know the ones that get all gooey and never quite peel off? They're perfect for babies. The problem with Claire is that she has to be re-bandaged about every 2 hours because she has to be bathed about every two hours. She's so gross.

Speaking of Claire, I have decided that I am never going to wean her from the bottle. I'm sure that I should have put her straight on a sippy to begin with, but watching her little lips around her bottle is just too cute and I'm a sucker. She looks like the baby from the Roger Rabbit cartoon. I wish she was still nursing, but every time she bit me I remember feeling a little different about the whole nursing situation. And as luck would have it, my sadness about weaning was solved by the fact that I'll soon be nursing two at once. Huzzah.

We decided today that we're going to find out the sex of the babies at a 4D ultrasound while Andrew's brother's family is in town. We are super stoked. What's even AWESOMER is that the entire appointment will be streamed online (not the wand and the goo and everything - just the video and audio and pics) so we can invite as many people as we'd like to find out the sex of the babies right as we're finding out! I'm so excited! It'll be like cramming all of our besties into the room WITH us! If you'd like an invite to see the sonogram on July 30th at 7pm CST, let me know! The more the merrier! My excitement is on overdrive right now.

Well y'all, I didn't get my nap today, which means I'm about to pass out. The worst part is that I forgot to take my vitamins and have to get up from my cozy bed to take them. Blerg. Perhaps I'll call my man and ask him to be so kind. He's such a darling when it comes to caring for me.

Okay, Friday...you got me.

We were out the door at 7:45 this morning. We ran off to WalMart to get some shopping done, and Andrew called as we were walking into the store and said, "You haven't bought anything for dinner yet, right? Our company just canceled." Which is actually a good thing, because the morning just took off like a shot and I'm pretty sure that this family, rally though we often do, is not prepared to have the house presentable and dinner on the table by 6.

$171 later, we arrived home and Claire started opening drawers while I unpacked the groceries. As I walked in with the last of the bags, I noticed that she was crying (not unusual) and bleeding (also not really that unusual). This blood, however, was EVERYWHERE. So who do I call? Lucy, of course. She keeps it together around here. I yell, "Lucy! She's bleeding all over the kitchen! Clean up the blood and tell me what to do!" Lucy jumps into action wiping up blood while she directs me to "make it stop." (See??)

I figure out that all of the blood is coming from a cut on her thumb and that she must have done it on a food processor attachment that was at the back of the drawer she was playing in. I went with the old, "Blood always looks worse than it really is" mantra and wrapped her hand in a kitchen towel. When I unwrapped it a few minutes later, her hand was still gushing. I don't know why the harrowing accidents always happen right when we walk in the door. Lucy's concussion? Same story.

So I wrappped the hand back up and stuck a rubber glove over it to hold it in place, as Home Slice was NOT about to let me tape up her hand, and I figured the rubber glove would confound and entertain her on the drive to urgent care. It actually worked pretty well and the urgent care staff praised my ingenuity. (I'm o not making that up.)

We walk in and try as I might to explain it's really just a thumb, the triage nurse see the blood everywhere and whisks us away to be sewn up. Assuming the authorities are going to show up with lights flashing due to my letting a child play with sharp blades, I'm feeling queasy. Luckily, everyone was kind and quick and after several doctors conferred about the very deep and gross cut on Claire's thumb, it was decided that no stitches would be given. They put some steri-strips on it and wrapped it up, with directions to put a sock on it and tape it when we got home. I was going to do that before her nap, but she crashed so hard that I'll worry about it at bedtime. They also want her on antibiotics to make sure that it doesn't get infected, as her age sort of lends itself to less than clean healing.

SO, $111 later, I am home with major babyproofing supplies and will be helping Andrew celebrate Father's Day by keeping his kids alive. I figure with two on the way it'll make it easier to just have baby locks on every single thing we own, right?

What do historians really think of Obama?


Shared while visiting FoxNews.com:


President Obama's three unreported White House dinners with a small group of presidential historians they shed light on the reason this president is likely to find it much harder than he expects to connect with the public and win reelection to the White House.



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14 June 2012

Til Every Child is Unconscious

Whew. This evening was "one of those." I am currently locked in the bathroom running a bubble bath with my "sensual" Bath and Body Works bubble bath. Sensual though it may smell, I'm pretty sure Andrew is crossing his fingers for me to be abducted through the bathroom window.

My hormones seriously spiraled tonight. The dog ate a door, Claire is teething and the children are still awake. That was my cue to say, "Honey, call me when they're all knocked out and not a moment sooner."

I keep hoping the dog will be attacked by a bear and will die valiantly defending me. So far he's just sort of hanging on like every beast of burden I've ever had the pleasure of owning. (see?? Hormones!) I wouldn't mind that he's always under foot, but he's really not under "foot." He's sort of "under sternum." He's perfectly tolerable if he has a fresh knuckle bone every 12 hours. That's only $30 in knuckle bones a week! A bargain for not having to bury our faithful companion on the golf course. Ah, puppies. I could write for miles about how much I hate puppies. I love dogs, though, so I'm trying not to kill him because I assume that I'll love him someday. I hope "someday" is before December.

Well hey there, migraine!

I never get headaches. Well, unless I'm tired, pregnant, surrounded by kids and it's a Thursday. Then they seem to catch me pretty easily. I'm going to need a cherry limeade to kick this.

We had our 11w appointment today - the babies are beautiful! They're also sucking every last ounce of everything I have right now, so that's thrilling and encouraging...for them...

Baby A is our outgoing and wiggly one, measuring at 12w and presenting with a heartbeat of about 161 beats per minute. S/he was all over the place and having a blast in there. At 12 weeks the baby is fully developed and all that's left is the growing! Woop! Go Baby A!

Baby B was a little more quiet and thoughtful. While we didn't see a face, we assume there's one there. :-) With a heartbeat around 170 and measuring right there with Baby A, it looks like we have two more good-looking kids on the way!

My weight hasn't changed, which is normal for me but a little discouraging for twins. As the twins take up so much space and often deliver early, the first and second trimester are really my only times to gain the weight that will help them pack on the pounds later. According to Dr. Luke (twin genius doctor) I should be gaining a pound a week right now, and that's been tough. I'm trying, but it's hard to even want to eat, so what I can force down is immediately metabolized and put to use.

My next appointment is July 3rd and Dr. M said everything looks great. My orders are to rest and take full advantage of the rest of the family until then. He also said, "Wow, you have people in there! You're like an apartment building!" I can't decide how to interpret that one.
Baby A is 12w, 161bpm, Baby B is measuring a tiny bit smaller, 170 bpm. Hooray babies! More later!


13 June 2012

You can't fire me...I quit!

If it sounds dramatic, then it must be so!

I have decided to take a break from Facebook. I am wasting my entire life watching it all go by on a blue and white screen. I've been neglecting the blog for "likes" and have been lazy in documenting our family life. FAIL.

So, Andrew has figured out a way to network the ding-dang thing so that my blog posts will show up in my FB feed without my logging on. So we can continue to share without all the sickness that comes with FB and my melting brain. I'll check in once a week to see how everyone's doing, but I'm going to leave it at that. Today I didn't see Facebook once, and yet here I am. (That also means that if you talked to me on FB tonight,  it was actually Andrew while he was setting up my network.)

Most of you text with me or chat on Gmail anyway, so it won't be a difficult loss, and you'll have all these juicy blog posts to tide you over! Trust me, you'll never even know I'm gone, and I'll be back before you wake up.

Wishful thinking... Drop it, drop it, drop it.

Not bad for 8 months old (him laying next to the table) given that standing up he can easily rest his head on the dining room table! Claire appears to be enjoying that pizza but don't let her fool you! She collaborates with that troublemaker on the floor. Whenever we're not looking she's reaching down and handing him some food. Alas, Claire and Stone get along quite well whenever there is some pizza around. Watching his big flappy lips hanging over her tiny little hand is really funny. What's not funny? Watching her take that tiny little hand now covered (dripping actually) with dog slobber and grabbing her next piece and eating it. Ewwww...........

At the end of the first trimester and feeling like you-know-what, there is nothing I hate more than cooking. It makes me gag, and I hate eating dinner. Even so, everyone else actually wants to eat at 6pm. I know. So gross. So I'm turning back to crockpot meals, as I can prepare them in the morning and have the dishes done by lunch. LOVE my crockpot. Tonight I made Taste of Home's Tangy Chicken Thighs.

Y'all, I'm big into thighs. I'll be honest. When I see a chicken recipe, the first thing I think is, "I'll be it'd be better with thighs." I read somewhere recently that chicken thighs are coming back "into vogue" in the food world. Like we didn't see that coming? They're cheap and folks are POOR. This is a recession. I'm pretty sure powdered milk and dried beans were also "in vogue" at one point...and let's be honest. When you have three kids and two on the way, you're POOR. (But rich in spirit! Ha!)

This dinner was CHEAP. Yay for cheap! I spent $3.28 on 10 thighs, $.50 on an onion, $.14 on two cloves of garlic, $.82 on a can of cream of chicken, $1.16 on a can of chicken broth and $1.83 on a brick of cream cheese. $7.73. It calls for 6 thighs, but with you have a package of ten, why not throw caution to the wind?! I threw them all in and assumed it would be fine. And it was. This made a massive amount of chicken and sauce. I served it over rice. We're big rice people. Andrew may be a pasta person, but it's outlawed in these parts so we'll really never know. We had two adult bowls and three good-sized kid bowls, and I refrigerated another two servings for lunches, and THEN froze the rest of the chicken and sauce, which will give us that same amount over. So one night's dinner and two leftover lunches was $3.87. SWEET.

Stone and Lucy

They're so close to being the same height!

And they both have freckles!

Siblings at Play

Test feed to Fb

This is a test to see if networkblogs works!!! - Andrew

12 June 2012

Stone and Daddy


Look what I made!

11 weeks pregnant with twins! Huzzah!

Swim Fan

Caught in the act!

Naughty monkey!

Mango munchers

New shades! More to come!


Backwards swimsuit. Over the shorts. Trend setta.

Yes. She IS the cutest.

No privacy for mama.

09 June 2012

A Little Break

You GUYS! I am just about wiped out completely. Not really from all of the planning, but just from Rally Day itself. We had over 1500 Rally attendees, over 15 awesome speakers and gorgeous weather. The Fort Worth City Police were amazing (as always!) and did a great job keeping in touch and keeping the peace. I came away with...a sunburn. A very bad sunburn. And exhaustion. We came back here last night and had pizza with friends and then I slept for 12 hours straight. I napped for two hours today and I'm STILL pooped! Whew!

So, the Rally is done. I am relieved, if you couldn't tell! Now it's time for BABIES!!!

What's ahead at Cooke House?

  • Our French doors are being installed Tuesday - I can't even tell you how EXCITED we are about that! It was a long process to get them ordered and scheduled and ready, but it looks like Tuesday is the day. We're having a great weekend knowing that this is our last weekend EVER with this sliding door!
  • Our SUV goes in this week for major repairs. I'm talking $1k. Gag. Andrew spent last summer without air conditioning (yeah, remember last summer???) and is long overdue for a nice, cool summer. And since we're going to have a good number of family and friends here this year for vacations and babies, we figure it's kind of wrong to give out the car that has no A/C and makes a weird knocking noise. The Escape is our baby and has been pretty trusty, so we're happy to put in the $$ and give her some new life. She's finally over 100k miles and we still have a little bit to pay on her (bad Cookes!) so we need to treat her like a member of the family, lest she betray us in our hour of need. 
  • We have our next baby appointment on Thursday. We're really, really anxious to see them after 4 long weeks. The last time we saw them, they were just tiny blobs with little flickering heartbeats. This time we'll see heads, arms, legs, movement! Wahoo! 
  • We have friends coming for dinner next Friday and are looking forward to that. I think it'll be a burgers and potato salad kind of dinner. 
  • Vacation Bible School is next week and we're all atwitter about Vatican Express! This is Molly's first year and she's just a little more than jazzed.
  • I am starting to make a few lists of things we need to buy for Mario and Luigi. We need cribs, which will actually be the next purchase, as we don't want to get too far along without having a place to put them. After that it's carseats, a stroller and some "twin things." 
  • I'm getting started on some sewing to finish up the girls' room, and am hoping to be completely satisfied with that place in about a month. 

05 June 2012

Molly rock climbimg

She said, "Uh oh. A rock." Not yelled Not panicked. Simply, matter of fact. Like James Franco in the FIRST part of movie127 hrs. Totally chillaxing while rock climbing. LOL.

All three inches off the ground.