So I realized that amidst all of this re-posting, I haven't even given an update on our wee little ones and family in awhile (sorry to the Grandparents!) Here it goes.
We've been pretty busy. Steve is in full gear with his grad school class so that means he is studying a lot. There are some things though that have helped us transition. In December we were given a 1987 white GMC truck by my Dad and uncle (it was my grandpa's) and so, that means that instead of us sitting around and missing Daddy all day on Saturday (and all of the other days/nights he's gone studying during the week), we get to go out and do stuff. So we've been hitting up the park, going on some hikes and generally having as much fun as we can to distract ourselves. This has been a great change from last semester when we only had one vehicle. Steve can't really study much at home...I'm not really sure why! So, him having some wheels has been great! We wouldn't have gone out and bought another car but, a free one, yes please! Plus Steve has always wanted a truck, so there you go. The boys love taking turns going places with Daddy and sitting in the "front". Yeah for the old truck (picture behind the cookie stand)!! We've also settled into a nice routine with Steve's studying schedule making it a bit easier for me to manage and know what to expect. Plus, this semester's class is called Iterative Techniques (what??) and is the second in the Numerical Analysis series. So that means it's set-up just like the last class and he has the same professor. Great! That helps Steve know what's going on from the get-go which has really saved him a ton of time and worry. We definitely feel like we're at capacity with his school and couldn't handle anything else but, we're doing fine with what we have.
Another thing that has really helped is that Steve always comes home for meals on the weekends so that we can be together then. Our Saturday night dinner also gives me something to look forward to. I definitely could do without the putting them all to bed by myself many nights in a row (most of the time it takes me an hour!) but after this semester, Steve will probably be dealing with some easier math classes as he continues to pursue his Master's. He'll also be 1/3 of the way done! Aaahhh...some light at the end of the tunnel is peeking through-I see it! And really, I'm thankful we have the means and ability for Steve to have this opportunity in the first place. For a long time it didn't seem possible so, I'm trying hard to remember that it is truly a blessing indeed! Elliana is nearing 8 months and is just the light of our lives. Some of her new tricks from the last month or so involve her pulling herself up, saying "Mama" and some other babbly words, clapping and her sporting a new tooth. She's not crawling yet (except backwards sometimes) but she's dangerously close as she gets up on all fours a lot and rocks. Who knows when she'll finally take off. I'm still crossing my fingers that it'll take some more time because once she does take off, I'll officially have four kids and not 3 1/2!
Caleb is a building machine. That kid can build an incredible train track and anything else he can get his hands on-puzzles, blocks, tinker toys, legos, etc. He really doesn't care to play as much on his track, he just wants to built it as intricately as he can with it all looping together. And as soon as he finishes it, he has to make it better. He turns 4 on Sunday. I can't believe he's already that big!!
Isaac's reading has really taken off. He has been able to read for the past year (mostly the easy phonetic stuff) but over the last few months, he has really improved. He enjoys picking up books and him reading has opened up a whole new world to him. He loves being out and reading signs and trying to figure out anything that comes his way. Kindergarten has been SO great for him.
Joshy, is well, Joshy. My little Joshua is just spunky. How else do I say it? He's spunky. At times he's really difficult and then I'll turn around and he's doing the cutest things and saying, "I wuv you Mommy." And then when I turn back to what I'm doing, he goes and unloads my folded laundry basket all over the floor-trying to "help" mind you. In an effort to keep his hands busy, I've tried various tactics. One is stacking wood. He loves it. He gets that from his Grandpa. I'll never understand or even like the age two much but, his little shining personality has made some of the rough patches more smooth. And yes, he always squints like that when I pull out my camera. Cracks me up! I'm just trying to keep up. Every night I crawl into bed exclaiming, "I'm so tired!" and morning comes too quickly. But somehow, God gives me strength to do it all again.
I am Nikki Dauphin, wife to Steve since July 2002, and mom to four boys and one little girl. Currently my husband is pursuing his PhD in mathematics, so as you can imagine, with five kids in tow, there are many adventures to behold! I'm learning how to raise a brood of boys and one precious princess, be a homemaker, how to be a lovely wife to my handsome and dashing husband and how to love those around me. Stop and stay awhile. Family stories, recipes, musings on life and lessons I'm learning are all a part of this blog. I love the life I've been given and thank God for His many blessings.
Steve-My amazing, fix-it, brilliant, math-loving, puzzle-solving husband is a Math PhD student pursuing his graduate degree through Colorado State University. He is also a Year Round Graduate Intern for Sandia National Labs researching and working on projects related to national security and preparing for his dissertation. We met at Cal Poly, SLO and were married in 2002. Seriously, he's my best friend.
Isaac-Laughter. My precious firstborn. Blue-eyed, blondie, logical, lefty. Particular, orderly, courageous, funny, and intelligent. Sees the world in patterns, numbers, colors and shapes. My first son. My joy.
Caleb-Brave. My mischevious secondborn. Brown-haired, coal-eyed, soldier. Needs explanations about how the world works. "Mathy", inquisitive, architectural and mechanical. Silly, passionate, tough, long-suffering and smart. My second son. My love.
Joshua-Saved by the Lord. My irreplaceable thirdborn. Bubbly, gregarious, social and playful. Loves to be surrounded by his family. Cuddly, kissable, chubby and charming. Life of the party, full of joy, overflowing with humor and laughter. My third son. My light.
Elliana-The Lord Has Heard. My long-awaited daughter. Petite, dark-eyed, beauty. Strong, coordinated, cheeky and spunky. Sharp as a tack and a flitting socialite. Loved by every member of her family. My fourth born. My only daughter. My treasure.
Nathan-God Has Given. My fourth son. Yet, it never gets old. My youngest little gift. Gentle, strong, sweet, angelic. Blonde and light-eyed. Littlest of them all but full of life and love. My fifth born. My littlest man. God's given. My gift.
Hot Providence (too bad it's out of print) America's Test Kitchen Anything Williams Sonoma King Arthur Flour