A Day In The Life 3 (Video) – With Four Kids, Including Twin Toddlers

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In our family’s most recent “day-in-the-life” video, what was supposed to be a typical day, ended up being a day home with a sick twin.

Before starting the day, I took some time for myself, including fitting in a workout, throwing on some makeup and even doing my hair. But a cold had been circling our house, and when Mike and I walk into Mia and Everly’s room we make a grim discovery.

Follow along as I juggle everything from sick kids, to work, play time, date night and even some time for myself.

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Not Letting Illness Knock Down Our House Of Cards

Yesterday I got the call. We were due, really. It had been two weeks, and of course, like clockwork, it was time for our kids to get sick.IMG_3176

Mia grabbed their bunnies and blankies so that she could make a bed. Mia loves to parent Everly, it melts my heart.

Everly’s daycare called letting me know that she hadn’t been acting like herself and she had a mild fever. I took a deep breath, dropped what work I had planned for the day and raced to pick her up.


Although Illness is very common when you have young kids, it has probably been the biggest source of tension in our home.For a long time, whenever a crying, sick child would wake us, or hours would pass and no matter how much consoling we did, and we couldn’t seem to soothe our child, those moments would make us snap.

Mike and I are pretty great parents, in my opinion, but it somehow seems like to too much when our kids are sick.

It is an unpredictable, messy, pressure cooker situation. A wrench into our world. A situation that we can try to help, but cannot fully control. It pains us to see them in pain. Mix that feeling of helplessness with exhaustion and you have a recipe for bickering.

We are working on this, and I am seeing progress. This morning we walked into a sick bedroom. We both stayed calm and knew what task was who’s. No freaking out. Just action, communication and making decisions as a team for our sick child.


That kind of teamwork is a big deal for us. We are growing, both as parents and as a couple.

We know that a couple of events that occurred when we first became parents, have made us hyper sensitive to any time our kids are ill, or struggling.

You can read ‘My Traumatic Start To Motherhood And How It Changed Me As A Parent’ here.

For a long time we couldn’t grasp a healthy perspective when our kids got sick. We would turn on each other and release our worry, stress and helplessness on the other person.

But with time, experience, patience and communication, we are handling these common real-life parenting experiences with strength and calm.

We are no longer letting illness allow our world to come crashing down. Heaven forbid, if we are ever confronted with a real crisis, we will now be able to face it as a team.

The Calm After The Storm

Toddler healing from HFMThe waves have stopped crashing onto us. We are not trying to keep our heads above water anymore and we can finally breathe again.

For the past few weeks we have endured a flat tire, two back injuries, all six of us having the stomach flu and our 18-month-old twins having a horrible case of hand, foot and mouth disease. We were hit hard.

You can read more about our experience with hand, foot and mouth disease on Yummy Mummy Club: Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease: The Illness from Hell

But a week has passed and although we have been left with some scars, it seems like the clouds are parting. scabs healing from HFM

My husband, Mike, and I have been realizing lately, that we haven’t really seemed to be able to move out of survival mode. Not just coming home from our long vacation, or dealing with tons of illness, but long term survival mode. In fact, if we are being really honest, we never shifted out of the phase we entered during my pregnancy with our twins.

Recently, Mike and I have been having a lot of discussions about where we are struggling, both as a unit and as individual people. As far as our relationship and marriage goes, we have a handle on that, thanks to date night and LOTS of communication.

But we have really started to discuss our future, our health, our finances and our happiness, and have had some eye-opening revelations.

Knowing we are finished having children and moving out of the baby phase is really exciting, but also scary. For years we bounced from planning, to pregnancy, to new baby phase and then back to planning for our next. All which gave us the constant excuse to live in survival mode: slack with tidying up, allow clutter to build up, be relaxed with our spending, stay cooped up and let our weight and health slide.

But, we are on the other side now. We are trying to learn how to be responsible, well rounded adults again. We dug ourselves into a survival hole and now we are figuring out how to climb out.

It’s going to take time, but we are on the same page.

What do you call not being in survival mode? Living? Thriving? Routine? All of those sound great to me!Toddler

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The Art Of Trading Off


Last week, illness entered our house. It took hold of our twins one by one and then circled back to each of them once more.

My husband Mike and I know exactly what to do when our kids are sick. After more than six years of being parents and having four kids, we have figured out what medicines to use, how much to give, how to hydrate, when a cry is a “sick cry,” who cleans the sick child while the other changes the sheets and at what point they need to see a doctor.

But when your child is only sleeping in 30 minute intervals, and has you awake for most of the night, it can feel like you are in a pressure cooker.

For the first part of the night, we usually have our rhythm. But then this point hits, where we would start to snap at each other and fight about things that don’t even make sense.

Over the years we have learned that it is so important, (especially when an illness lingers), that we communicate with the other person when we feel like we have nothing else left to give.

A few days into our outbreak, Mike was unravelling. In fact, he was telling me about things that were irritating him that didn’t even make sense to me. It reminded me of when I get really bad PMS and my nerves feel raw.

I took charge and told him that I was taking over. I did all of the night waking, medicine administering and comforting. He slept and recharged.

But by Saturday morning, although Mike was back to himself again, I was the one who was crashing. Only for me, it was a physical toll the stress and lack of sleep was taking.

He immediately jumped into action, took over with the kids and let me hide in bed all morning. I knew that the house might be a mess when I emerged, but I was okay with that.

Eventually the days passed and everyone is healthier. Although we each feel a bit ragged, there is this sense of victory that we feel.

If you and your marriage are going to survive parenthood, and yes I am using the word survive, then you need to not only master the art of “survival mode,” but of also “trading off.”

That includes communicating with the other person when you are DONE and avoid picking meaningless fights, or snapping at the other person. This also means that when the other person is in charge, you give up control. You don’t micromanage or judge if other things fall by the wayside.

We all go through it. Having sick kids sucks. But there is something incredibly rewarding when your little one turns the corner, starts smiling again and life returns to normal… at least until the next illness hits.

Here is a video of me emerging from my Netflix cocoon on that Saturday morning…




Having Four Kids Can Be Brutal Sometimes… Especially When Everyone Is Sick

Illness and four kidsHoly crap, I am a mom of four! I am fourteen months into being a mom of four, but I feel like it is really sinking in once again. For the past week, illness has been ripping through our home. There is nothing like having five members of your family to drop like flies. I am the last one standing.

Let’s back up a week. I had been feeling a little stressed. I don’t have any childcare until November, and the weight of trying to get everything done each day was making me feel like I couldn’t catch a break. Although I had successfully calmed the anxiety I had been feeling, but I was starting to pity myself a little too much. This was kindly pointed out to me by Mike, the day after we went out on a date, and I complained the entire time. He told me very nicely that I need to stop complaining and start being more proactive, especially about getting out with the kids so that I am not as isolated.

After being ticked, because he dared to tell me I could change my own situation, it sunk in a little and I decided to yank myself out of my pity spiral and take control. I put plans in place for a week of outings with the kids, a lunch with some friends and a date night with Mike. Monday rolled around and I packed all of the kids up to go pick up pumpkins for our Thanksgiving (we are in Canada) dinner we were going to be hosting. Kids and pumpkinsWe had a really fun time, and I felt pretty great that I was getting out with everyone. But on the drive home Beau started to complain that she didn’t feel well. And a couple hours later she was violently ill and could barely move.

Little did I know that this was just the beginning of two separate illnesses bouncing around our home for a week. A stomach flu and a bad cold. It went from Beau, to Mia, back to Beau, to Mike, to Everly and then Holden. There were even a couple days that Beau had been fine, so I sent her to school, only to be called 30 minutes later because I had to pick her up because she had been sick. Ugh!

Having one or two sick twins that share a room throws a wrench into everything. You worry about them waking their sibling and we eventually found that we had to remove the sick, crying twin to let the other fall asleep. Eventually we were able to put the sick twin back into their crib  without a melt-down. But this would be a long process.
Sick twinsEverly and Mia each had us pull all-nighters, and because we are not spring chickens anymore like our college years, this sleep deprivation hit us hard!3am in our home

This is what 3 a.m. in our home looks like, just in case you were wondering.

By Wednesday afternoon I was so tired, so frustrated and so isolated, that I started to unravel. In fact, I believe the words I uttered to my mother when help finally arrived were “I never signed up for this! I went from two kids to four and never got to experience having three kids. I am done!” Obviously I love my family very much and wouldn’t change a thing, but mentally and emotionally I needed a break.

I was able to still make it out for my lunch with my friends because Mike could see that I was cracking and took some time off of work. We also made it out for a quick date night. Both of these outings were just enough to regain my sanity, recharge and be there for my family.

What happened to our Thanksgiving dinner? We pulled the plug and cancelled. Our family was very understanding and decided to move it to a restaurant. Holden, Beau and I were able to join in as well. thanksgiving dinner 2Every once and a while, I get a wake-up call that I do, indeed have four children. This was one of those times. I am learning that especially while everyone is so young, to embrace survival mode when necessary, and to also be very protective of any breaks I can grab.

The clouds are finally parting and everyone is starting to sleep more and we are able to re-enter life again. We are back to our daily to-do lists, play time and giggles. I have come out on the other side of this week, being humbled by the enormous responsibility of caring for these precious four children, but also feeling stronger and more confident as a mother.Everly sick

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