Word Vomit

Yes, it's been awhile since a true update. Yes, I still have a laundry list of blogs I need to put out there. Maybe by the twins 30 month birthday, I'll actually have their 24 month old birthday post up. In the meantime, although it's probably the last thing I need to do right now, I'm going to have some word vomit. Read on or not at your own risk : ) My brain is on supersonic mode these days so bear with.

A little bit about what we've been up to:

1. We FINALLY finished our 4 days a week for 4 week survival swim lessons. Wah-hoo! But now I actually kind of miss having something to get out of the house for every day, even if it was a bit stressful. But by week 2, I had it down to a science with packing, changing, and coordination - and only forgot wipes once. Unfortunately it was on the only day that Ryan decided to leave a lovely present right before his lesson.   Suh-weet. Ummm, k? Never realized how hard it was to get off a really, really dirty swim diaper without wiping you know what all over said child and myself. Yummy. And you are welcome for that visual.

2. The kids can actually survive now. I think. They can certainly turn over and float for long periods of time and then can swim a couple of yards to the steps. And the most important thing --- they actually like swimming. Once they got over the whole initial dunking part. Our swim teacher does not fool around. At any rate, for the rest of the summer, we'll continue with once a week lessons, and then perhaps go to every 2 weeks or every month once we move into fall. It's been a really good experience and I HIGHLY recommend doing a class like this. It's super intensive and they actually learn skills other than blowing bubbles. And call me selfish, but I was happy not to get into the water every day with them. 

3. Not sure where I left off last on the house stuff, but we are rocking and rolling with the process. And the mounds of paperwork that comes with it. Getting a mortgage 6 years ago compared to now is no joke. I won't climb on my soap box now (if you are a friend on FB, you saw my rant a few days ago), but every time I see an email come through from my closer, I'm pretty sure he's going to ask me to give blood or a urine sample next. It's that freaking excruciating. I wonder if they would like to know that my first job was at Old Navy when I was 16 and I also worked at Babies R Us when I was 17. Then Roly Poly from 18-22.

4. I LOVE LOVE LOVE our new house --- if all goes to plan, we'll be in it by the first of September. Thankfully, most of it is move in ready, paint colors and all. We really just have to do one room for Ryan which is a lovely shade of Pepto Bismol Pink now. Not sure that goes well with the sports or trains motif I have in mind.  But we are pretty lucky that we really just need to get our furniture in and then we'll be set. Actually, way more than lucky. I feel completely and utterly blessed --- and immensely spoiled. It's hard to rectify in my mind sometimes my wants and true needs - so I end up feeling guilty. But that's for my head to sort out. Right now, I am just so thankful for a husband who works so incredibly hard for his family and has allowed us to be in this position to think about moving. 

5. Work life has been NUTS. Still working part-time for the church of course, but also have been picking up some freelancing writing gigs on the side, with the potential of more to come. I will say it's come as a surprise how challenging it has been. I mean, I love to write, so it shouldn't be that hard, right? Well, I do love to write, but it's a totally different ballgame to write other people's stories. And it's not like I was a journalism major or anything. So I've really just been relying on instinct and asking bazillions of questions (I'm sure my subjects just LOVED spending an hour on the phone with me for a 900 word article). We'll see where it goes. I haven't the faintest clue but it's been  nice to think outside the box a bit. And selfishly, it has been good for my self-esteem to remember that I am someone other than a mother and my brain can process something more than "what's for dinner?" and breaking up fights over blocks.

6. TIME. There's just not enough. I spend many a night laying my head on the pillow and thinking about what I could have done better. I should have been a better mom today. I should have been a better wife today. I should have been a better employee today. Stretched would be a word I guess. But I suppose that comes with the territory and I'm certainly not the only mom yelling it from the rooftops. Can I get an Amen? And also AMEN to preschool starting in just a little over a month. Two days a week to be able to concentrate at home without "Oh, Toodles" in the background must be what Heaven is like.

7. I have about 50 pictures on my phone that I need to dump pronto, so expect that fun little post here soon. Maybe a swim lesson or 10. Lucky you : ) One day I'll get back to my regular writing and you can be bored every few days instead of a few times a week. ha.

Happy Tuesday, y'all!

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Heart & Mind Education Day at CHOP

Hello, friends!

A few times in the recent past, I have referenced www.heartwaves.org, an awesome Congenital Heart Defect advocacy, research, and informational website for parents of children with special hearts. The website and organization was started by a husband of a soccer friend of mine from LSU and I have been inspired by their passion to reach out to CHD families all across the country. Their son was diagnosed with Tetralogy of Fallot (a distant cousin to Q's disease). He is now 5 years old and is doing just awesome. 

Jared recently wrote an article about the emotions all of us heart parents go through when our worlds virtually stop for an instant when we hear those dizzying words of "your child has a problem with his/her heart". We all remember that place and time and in an instant, can be brought back to those moments of fear, questions of "why us?", the guilt, the grace, and eventually the peace of knowing you will find the best place possible to take care of your child.

Would love for all of you to take a look at this article (he says it much better than me!) and I invite each and every one of you to follow along as Jared streams video and blogs from Philadelphia's CHOP at their very special and informative "Heart and Mind Education Day" on Saturday, July 28th.

 If you haven't already, visit www.heartwaves.org and subscribe to their blog or add it to your google reader. They post awesome and informative articles all the time that never fail to inspire and educate me as a heart mommy. Information is POWER!

Team Quinn Forever & Always,

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Happy 4th of July - 2012

I am again way behind in posts (umm, anyone recall that the twin's actually had a birthday party and I have yet to post about it yet?). We are just running mad around here and my car shows it. The kids are in swim lessons 4 times a week for 4 weeks --- it doesn't sound all that time consuming, until you add in drive time there and back, the actual lessons, changing, etc and all of a sudden 3 hours of our day has slipped away. Oh yeah, and we closed on our house and are officially leasing back for 90 days. Which means we have about 83 days to find a new place to live which actually is proving quite challenging and time consuming as well. Throw in work, freelancing on the side (more on that later), physical therapy because I am a medical freak of nature, and other assorted duties of trying to remain a sane wife and mother, well... blogging has gone by the wayside. BUT I have these pictures from the 4th and am determined to actually post them somewhat on time. 

We spent the 4th very quietly. No big events, parties, or firework shows. Our little man is a bit sensitive to loud noises (freaks the heck out with hair dryers and vacuum cleaners) so we didn't think fireworks would go down well. And honestly, we just wanted a day OFF. I spent the morning seeing my precious new "niece" courtesy of one of my besties, our family photographer, and R&Q's "Aunt" Kendra. Love, love, love this precious new one and again amazed at God's Grace and the sheer miracle of life.

Sweet girl. I was a bundle of nerves awaiting the news of her arrival. Now I know how Kendra felt when R&Q were born. Such a special friendship we share --- can't wait to see Kenzie grow!

We were letting her rest so she could conserve energy for feeding. I know I will get to hold her many, many times in the future!

Beyond that, we had the all-american lunch of Pot Belly and laid low the rest of the afternoon. Of course, the kids were decked out in their red, white, and blue, as was I. Matt did not wear any of the patriotic colors, but had on a tshirt for a band called the National or Nationals or something like that so I guess it counts.

We did take them out for some traditional 4th of July pics and it struck me sentimental that it would be the last 4th pictures we would take in front of this house. Sweet and a bit sad. The kids were actually in good moods and for once cooperated for the camera. Making progress. Here a few shots. Hope you and yours had a wonderful and relaxing 4th!

Yup, that's my favorite. It will probably embarrass the heck out of them later in life, but oh so precious. Love that they love each other. I'll try to remember this picture when one of them is putting the other in a full nelson.

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