How do I really feel about our twins graduating pre-school?

preschool graduation

Two weeks ago our twins, Mia and Everly, graduated pre-school at Kids and Company. It was totally adorable and I’ll admit it, a bit emotional too.

First of all, can we talk about their little caps that our twins’ teachers made out of black construction paper? Oh so cute! But as I sat there, on teeny chairs, as excited parents took photos of their first born hitting such a huge milestone, it hit me… these are our LAST babies. This is it.

Part of me has always loved doubling up on milestones with twins. Diapers, bottles, cribs, each of those phases rushed by us quickly with two and I never looked back. But lately I have been finding myself feeling a little cheated. I don’t get to bask in third and forth pre-school graduations; it’s a double whammy.

As our four kids excitedly scurried around the festively decorated classroom piling delicious snacks on their plates, I made sure I just slowed down and sat in the moment. In our little corner, amongst beanbag chairs and miniature sofas, I took it all in, trying to divide my attention between both excited children.

Don’t get me wrong. I am proud. I am oh so very proud. In fact, this is the moment we have been talking about since we laugh-cried, finding out that twins were on the way. But the moment is here and it is bittersweet.

So, what is my advice? Drink in every moment. The loose skin on your newborn’s knees, the way they keep sucking as they sleep, even after their pacifier has fallen out of their mouth. The first time they pull themselves up with a gleeful smile and get into something they know they aren’t supposed to. The giggles, oh the giggles! Drink it in mama.

This post was created in partnership with Kids & Company.

Finding a childcare that not only gives me time to build my career, but that my kids also love, has been such a wonderful aspect to having more of a work/life balance. Kids & Company has the flexibility I need with my schedule, but also the unique programming, learning opportunities, from-scratch meals and sense of community they provide fills me with such confidence in my choice in childcare.

With locations all across Canada, Kids & Company is a high-quality care and early development centre that parents can trust and kids will love. It started under the leadership of two moms (one with 8 children!), who felt there was a need for flexible care options in a setting with amazing teachers, community, proven development programs and an understanding of today’s families.

Whether it’s their Grab ‘n’Go snacks, parent workshops, or their complimentary care for date nights and shopping days outside of regular hours, nothing has been forgotten.

Here’s where it gets exciting… right now Kids and Company is waiving the registration fee (a $150 value) for Nesting Story readers! Just email to access this exclusive offer.
One waved registration per family for a newly registering child before December 31, 2018. Subject to availability.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kids & Company. While compensation was provided, all opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily indicative of the opinions of Kids & Company.



Having Four Kids Is Not As Terrible As You Might Think

Four Kids - Nesting StoryA couple weeks ago I was having dinner with a couple other moms, each with one, or two kids. We got on the topic of me having four kids and how I possibly manage. I smiled and said, “honestly, it’s not that hard.” Which is the truth.

One of my friends thanked me for not going on about how horrible having many kids is. She told me that a mom of three she knows, tends to constantly rant about how hard she has it and is always negative.

Now, let me get a couple things out of the way first. I definitely have my very bad days. Days when I turn to Mike and half jokingly say, “why did we have so many kids?” Nothing frustrates me more than when I read an article, or receive a comment scolding me, as a parent, for complaining about anything motherhood related. We are all allowed to complain, vent and be real. This is definitely not a four kids is easy, so stop complaining post, because I hate those.

From when I was a child, I always wanted four kids. I was one of four, and it was all I knew. But after having two kids, I was really considering being done. We had hit this wonderful sweet spot, and I wasn’t sure that I wanted to rock the boat.

It was Mike who encouraged me to not “close up shop” just yet and to take a break instead. We did wait, and after a while I knew I wanted at least one more. We just happened to get two for one, (twins), and jump from two to four kids.


I have never experienced having three kids, so I don’t know what it feels like, but I can tell you with all honesty, in my case, four has been easier than one, and four has also been easier than two.

This may sound crazy, but it is true, and here’s why. With one kid, I obsessed. No, wait, we obsessed, as a team. Holden was under a microscope. We were under our own microscope. When I had a parenting mis-step, (which is pretty much everyday, because this is real life), I would torture myself about it.

When Beau came along, it was good and bad. The good part was the quiet lulls were gone, which meant no more time for obsessing. The bad part was the quiet lulls were gone, which meant I felt like I was on a hamster wheel all. the. time.

When you hit the magic number four, something happens. You cut the crap and cut out the noise. I suddenly became this extremely decisive and efficient mother. For some reason, I pack less for four kids, than I did with one. Maybe because I couldn’t be bothered and would rather, MacGyver a diaper if I ran out, (like we recently did out of napkins), instead of spending my precious time meticulously packing a diaper bag.

With four kids I don’t set myself up for failure anymore. First, you stop getting invited to as many people’s houses, because, really? Who wants someone with a busload of kids to go to their house? I am honestly okay with this, because I would probably turn down most invitations anyways. It’s not worth the stress.

I can remember countless times going out with one or two kids, trying to be a hero, and leaving with a toddler who had missed their nap and me shaking with fried nerves. Nope, I couldn’t bother.

The great thing is, I don’t have to rely on playdates anymore for my kids to socialize. They are like a litter of puppies. Despite having many rooms in our home, nine times out of ten, they choose to play within a five foot radius from each other.

twins and kids playing

We now get together with with other families on neutral territory, or in our home. It makes life so much easier for everyone involved.

When you have four, the kids sense it. They sense that they aren’t going to be waited on hand and foot. Occasionally they will test the waters, but quickly realized that their demands won’t work in our house.

This take it, or leave it attitude was something that even I had to get used to. But once I did, it was wonderful and much less work.

I do long for the days that our twins are just a little older and more independent, so that I can spend a few hours decluttering without having to watch them like a hawk. But I know that day will come. Until then I will enjoy this phase, and keep shoving our clutter into closets and our basement.


The bottom line is this, having many kids isn’t as horrible as you may think. It’s different, but it is definitely doable, and dare I say, even enjoyable.

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What’s In A Name? The Story Behind Holden, Beau, Mia And Everly’s Names

Four kidsChoosing a name for your baby is hard. In fact, its a HUGE responsibility, and you basically need to nail it, or else your child is screwed. No pressure though.

A few days ago, I got a message from a reader asking me if I could share the stories behind each of our kids’ names…

“Could you do a post on how you decided on your kids names? They are all so unique and different that I thought it would be fun to hear where you got them from.” -Danielle

I loved this idea! I really do have some great stories behind each of our kids’ names too. So grab your popcorn.Kids dancingLet’s start at the beginning. Holden.HoldenI remember being around 20 months pregnant, sitting in Florida with Mike and family, and flipping through baby name books. It was eventually Mike that came across the name Holden. We had only ever heard “Holden” from the famous book, The Catcher in the Rye. But something about that name stuck.

We were having a hard time deciding between the names Holden and Hayden. We loved both. But it was a co-worker of Mike’s that posed this question: “what if he becomes CEO of a company one day, what name would suit that kind of position of power?” Easy, Holden.

Holden’s name suits him so well. To me, Holden is a strong, serious name, which is a perfect fit for our sweet little rule-follower.

Full name: Holden Michael Venditti

Next in line… Beau.BeauBeau’s name was one that we had ready to go if we were having a girl. I have this tiny obsession with the movie Signs. You know, the one where Aliens invade the planet, but the focus of the movie is on a family living on a farm? The little girl’s name in it is Bo. I absolutely loved that name since the first time I watched SignsSigns

The only problem was the spelling. The female spelling of Beau is actually Bo, like Bo Derek. But we were worried that Beau would get teased at school and be called B.O. – body odour. So, last minute we made the decision to change the spelling to the male version, Beau.

Beau completely suits her name. The only problem is, anytime her name is called from a list, like at a doctor’s office, they think she is a boy. Oh well. You can’t win them all.

Full name: Beau Bianca Venditti

Then came the daunting task of naming two people at once. Twins. Mia and Everly

Shhhhh, Mia and Everly and pretending to sleep in this photo. Pretty convincing, right?

When I was first pregnant with our twins, I was absolutely convinced I was having two boys. So, we went ahead and picked out two boy names: Sawyer (from Lost) and Landon (from A Walk to Remember).

We were completely shocked when we found out that we were having two girls. I could think of lots of girls names I loved. Daisy, Ella, Mila and Maisy, just to name a few. But Mike kept vetoing every one of them. Mike found it so hard naming our girls.

Then I got really stuck on the name Ever. I loved the simplicity of it. But Mike still wasn’t sold. It was when I heard that Channing Tatum mmmmmm…. and Jenna Dewan Tatum named their daughter Everly, that I knew that we had found our name. It was such a beautiful name. Mike was sold immediately although I initially thought I would shorten it to Ever, I never have.



Full name: Everly Mae Venditti

For a long time we thought that the two names would be Everly and Ellie. Have you seen the movie Up? That’s where we got the name Ellie from. But the more we thought about it, the more we wanted them to have very different names.

So, we threw around Mila for a bit, but then we read Mia in a baby name book and it stuck, (this was just before the name Mia exploded in popularity). Mia was simple, (which we love), and pretty.


Full name: Mia Lilian Venditti

How did we decide who got which name? When I was late in my twin pregnancy and we had FINALLY settled on our names, we let Holden decided who would get what name. So, he turned to my belly, and first pointed to the bottom, which he knew was where baby A was, and said “this is Mia.” Then he pointed to my top left, where baby B was camping out in my ribs, and said “and this is Everly.”

So when they were born, and the doctor held the first baby up, we said “that’s Mia” and when the second baby was held up we said “and that’s Everly.”

They each really suit their names perfectly. Good job Holden.

We overall opted for somewhat unique names, and we will probably never find personalized water bottles, or key chains with their names on them, (well, maybe Mia). But we love how unique they are, and fingers crossed, we are pretty sure we nailed the whole naming people thing.