Riding a Bike

You may remember that Silje got a bike for her birthday. Since David has been riding a bike for over a year now, Silje has had a tough time being shown up by her younger brother, as it is a skill she has yet to master. Knut’s been working with her all summer and still she doesn’t seem much closer. I figured it’s something we can work on again next year, but Knut will not give up so easily, especially when seeing how important it is to her.

Tomorrow a group from our church is going for a bike ride, and Knut told David he could come with him. David lit up with excitement at the thought of such a splendid outing, but you could see Silje’s face quietly fall, as she realized that if she could ride her bike, she’d probably be able to go to.

That’s when Knut decided to call the rental shop, and rent for a day something that other parents have raved to us had helped their kids get the feel for balancing on a bike. I think both Knut and I wish we had something like this, and although we’ll probably never find one of these used, we’re definitely keeping our eyes peeled!

Take a look at that! It’s a little 3rd wheel with petals and handlebars that attaches to the back of Knut’s bike. She’ll get to go along with David and Daddy after all!

They went for a practice spin around the yard, and it went very smoothly.

Off they go! They’ll have so much fun together tomorrow!

Drumroll Please…

Well, the ultrasound was off to a slow start. Our little baby was curled up in a ball, and wedged in a little spot so the technician couldn’t get measurements of anything. So after several attempts to get a good look at the baby, she had me lay on my side for a few minutes, and see if the baby would change positions. Fortunately, that happened.

I am proud to say, that my streak of being wrong about my gender guesses are over, because we are having a G I R L!!

Silje, you might imagine, is thrilled to be getting a sister. Knut and I are excited that we only have to narrow down our long list of girl names we love, rather than come up with yet another boy name to agree upon. (It’s almost too much to hope for a boys’ name “list” with us. We’re just grateful to come up with one we both like!)

Ooooo, there will be ruffles and pink things to come! The wheels are spinning!

Time to Place Your Bets!

Tomorrow is our big ultrasound, and we do plan on finding out the baby’s gender this time around! I was thinking of offering a prize or something or holding some kind of poll, but in the end I decided to just have everyone guess for the fun of it. With Silje and David, we found out ahead of time, and with Elias we kept him a surprise since we had never done that before and people said it was fun. After doing both, we decided finding out beforehand was more fun for us! We have yet to have a modest child in the womb, so don’t foresee any difficulties in finding out tomorrow!

Anyone want some clues? Hmmm…morning sickness wasn’t so bad this time around. With Silje it was awful, but to be fair I was working a lot of hours on my feet during that time and it was my first pregnancy and I didn’t know any of the “tricks” to keeping food down yet. I’d say as far as morning sickness goes, it very much lines up with my last 2 pregnancies (boys).

I’ve been craving chocolate mostly, but that has dwindled and now it’s fruit of any kind. I’ve had chocolate-ish cravings in the past 3 pregnancies (oreos, cake, etc.) but not just plain bars of chocolate like this time. The only other pregnancy that I’ve wanted fruit this bad and this much all the time was with Silje. It was never a pregnancy craving when I was carrying the boys.

I don’t know if I’m carrying like a girl or boy, but I know I’m carrying different than last time. This baby sits just a bit lower.

I’ve been measuring on the small side, and the heart rate has been in the 170s, 160s, and most recently, the 150s. Some people predict off of that, but really it depends if the baby is active or not when the doctor checks the heart rate.

So *I* think it’s a girl, but you should also know, I have been wrong with guessing my own children’s gender 100% of the time. I have not once been right yet. If you ask Silje, she’ll say “girl” and if you ask David, he’ll say “boy.” Go figure.

So…line up! Make your guesses! Our ultrasound will be tomorrow afternoon and we’ll probably post some results tomorrow evening!

Silje’s Summer Camp

It was hard for all of us to believe that Silje was big enough for Bible camp this summer, but our little girl is growing up before our eyes! She went off to camp for 3 days and 2 nights, and many of you were asking how it went. It went fabulous.

We dropped her off on Sunday, and just like a well oiled machine, the camp staff swarmed the kids with fun things to do across the lawn while all the kids were getting used to the place. The boys played on the playground, and Knut taught them tether ball. We got Silje’s things all set up in her cabin, and she chose the top bunk, which Knut inspected for safety, and was quite satisfied.

She was more than ready for us to leave when we did, and I was overwhelmed with some of the usual mommy emotions, as well as a renewed respect for how the camp I love runs things. I can’t believe it was 12 years since I worked out there. Saying that made me feel old. It was like admitting I wasn’t just out of high school, or just out of college anymore. I’m not just out of anything, unless you count non-maternity jeans.

Our time at home without Silje was pretty quiet. Without anyone for David to fight with, besides Elias who pretty much just goes along, the day was a few decibels below average. Our well broke on Monday, making it impossible to flush toilets, wash dishes, do laundry, and well, pretty much do anything. It’s all fixed now, but that was our time without Silje.

On Tuesday morning, the boys and I packed up to pick up Silje at camp. They had a little program at 10am, and we were supposed to be out of there by 11am. However, they had a pretty interesting morning out at camp, with a huge storm system running over them. Things were delayed, and wet, and precautions were taken to make sure all of the kids were going to be safe. However, this left no time for them to bring the baggage down to the parking area, and I had to go up with the kids to her cabin to pick it up. On a normal day…not a problem.

I don’t know when it was that I figured out it wasn’t a normal day. O yeah, it was when I had to leave Silje’s program because BOTH the boys melted down in screaming. Elias just wanted to run. David…I have no clue what was bugging David. Maybe he wanted to be on the playground instead of watching the program, maybe he wanted to run, maybe he was missing the snow again. I honestly don’t know what his deal was. At any rate, I was carrying and/or dragging the boys out of the program, and a friend of mine, Rebekah, took Elias out of my arms and said “I’ll just take him.” I could have kissed her.

I couldn’t even bring David to the back hallway because of his tempter tantrum, so outside we went. I don’t know how long it took him to calm down, but it felt about 3 hours (even though the program wasn’t even that long.) I missed a lot, and tried to catch a glimpse in the back hallway again, but my boys did not listen to a single word I said, and I cannot allow my requests to be ignored. In the name of consistency, blatant disobedience needs to be addressed and not ignored, but my goodness, did they just hit me both at once that morning where I wasn’t sure who do deal with first.

I’m always the one to tell people that it’s normal for kids to test you, and to test in public as well as in your home. I’ve always felt that if you’re consistent with proving to show the same consequences for behavior, that kids soon get that they can’t act out in public. This was the worst they’ve done in months, and I was so not used to this behavior in public, or in my home that I just felt humiliated. I hate to say it, but honesty at it’s finest. I was greatly encouraged by the camp director (my old boss) coming up to me and saying a few encouraging words, as well as some other moms.

By the time the program was over and we found Silje and signed her out, the boys were understanding we’d be leaving soon and I gave them each a job to do. We walked up to Silje’s cabin and got her suitcase on wheels, and I put David in charge of that. Silje was in charge of her pillow. Elias just had to hold my hand. I was so exhausted with dealing with the fiasco at the program though, that when I looked down the stairway, and at my 3 kids, I was wondering how it was all going to get to the bottom. I could barely carry Elias down the stairs, and could manage the light suitcase, but I certainly could not carry them both down. David couldn’t get the suitcase down, and Elias refused to walk at this point.

So, taking several trips, accompanied by lots of yelling of instructions, I shuffled up and down the stairs with the suitcase, and then with Elias, and thankfully the older kids did what they were told out of arms reach at the bottom of the stairs. Then we walked across camp to the van.

It wasn’t the ride home that I had hoped for. I was able to pick Silje’s brain a little bit on how camp went. She loved everything and asked if she could come again. She raved about a “mystery” that they had to solve, and how it wasn’t any of the suspects that they had thought. After she tired of my questions on the drive, though, it soon turned into me yelling to the back seat these series of commands in varied order and loudness: “Don’t touch your sister!” “Keep your hands to yourself!” “Get that strap out of your mouth!” “Don’t throw that!” “Silje he’s just trying to talk to you, be nice!” “Dont‘ do that it’s not safe!” I pulled the car over 3 times on the way home because someone had gotten themselves out of their seat, or had hurt the other, etc. It was not the welcoming ride home that I had hoped.

We went to straight to a customer appreciation picnic that Knut had told us to come to. It was put on by a company our farm deals with quite a bit, and it was free and kid friendly. At this point, Silje’s exhaustion from camp was showing itself, and she could barely talk without tears starting to flow. I could tell she was so tired! By the time we drove home, I was so exhausted myself I thought I was going to be sick! Knut helped me get the kids down for naps, and I fell asleep myself in the spare bed in the boys’ room so I wouldn’t have to move to scold anyone to get back in bed. I think I was asleep in about 30 seconds, so how long it took them to fall asleep, I’ll never know! They were sleeping when I woke up later, so it couldn’t have been that bad!

Everyone is feeling better now. I’m rested, and the kids have been very good today. Silje’s having a much better day and is able to talk more coherently. The boys are listening again. Slowly the housework that didn’t get done due to the well being out for a day is getting caught up. All is right again. And yes, Silje will be going again next year. None of us would have it any other way!