Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Take me out to the ballgame...

Amid stunned stares, gaping jaws and colorful comments, the Lyons Family Circus arrived at the new Yankee Stadium for Sunday's game vs. Tampa Bay.

Granted, most people wouldn't drag five kids under five to a baseball game. And, most people wouldn't take those five kids on public transportation, naively trusting in its reliability... especially when taking those five kids to the game requires also bringing along 6 bottles, 4 jars of baby food, 6 spoons, 3 burp cloths, 3 bibs, 8 diapers, 7 sunhats/Yankee caps, sunblock, a box of 50 wipes, "Baby Sharon", 3 lovey blankets called WeeWees (long story...), tissues, Purell, water bottles for the "big kids", 2 double strollers, and, thankfully, 2 grandparents and an aunt and uncle!

But, for better or for worse, we're not like most people and so, to the new Stadium we went! We arrived easily enough and attempted to "blend in" by opting for the two double strollers instead of the traffic-stopping combo of the triplet "limo" and double jogger... not that I've jogged anywhere lately but, that stroller really turns on a dime!

In any case, it seems that "blending in" is not currently an option for us and try as we might not to draw attention to ourselves, there's just something about three babies and two toddlers in pinstripes that are prone to draw a comment or two. Some of my favorites (which we've heard many times before) include...

"Better you than me" -- um, yes, I would say so!
"Are they all yours?" -- um, no, we grabbed a few while were on the train.

After settling Liam and Ciara in their seats with Mima, Pop-Pop, Aunt Kristin and Uncle Al, Des and I made several laps around the Stadium in an effort to explore all the new dining options, bars, beers of the world and, of course, to attempt to lull the babies to sleep. No luck though. While we could get two out of three sleeping, one of them was always committed to seeing the next at-bat... it seems that the triplets made a pact to make sure someone was always awake to take in the action.

Much to our surprise, all five kids, two parents, two grandparents and an aunt and uncle lasted the full nine innings. And, even better, the Yankees had a come from behind win. Feeling fairly accomplished, satisfied and even smug about making it through the entire game with nary an incident to report, we headed back to the train. And watched it leave the station. So we waited for the next train. Which didn't stop in our town. Still smiling smugly, we decided to feed the babies (again) while Liam and Ciara chilled in the stroller and we waited for the 5:33 train home. Which we discovered at 5:31 would be arriving on the opposite track. So, to end our day, we raced to the elevator with diapers, bottles, kids and Yankee paraphernalia flying. Down we went, over we went, up to other side and then onto our train just before the doors closed. As we once again became the focus of stunned stares, gaping jaws, and colorful comments, we couldn't help humming "Take me out to the ballgame", knowing that we'd do it all again.

1, 2, 3 Little Cubs

Ah hah! At last! It's taken a bit of time but I've finally figured out how to make technology work for me! Here are Kevin, Declan and Cormac about a month ago... stay tuned for some more recent pics and a recap of our trip to Yankee Stadium on Sunday.. :)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

When it's good, it's very very good...

Life in the Lyons Den: June 3, 2009

Well, it’s an old cliché but it truly is amazing how quickly the time flies by! Our little “cubs” will be 8 months old next week, Liam’s last day of pre-school is just around the corner and two-year old Ciara has just discovered ponytails and princesses…. suddenly relishing her unique position among her four brothers!

I returned to work in March and while the daily departure and reentry to the “Lyons Den” is a trick indeed, I’m enjoying the adult conversation, intellectual stimulation, break from bottles and diapers and, perhaps most significantly, a paycheck!

Des continues to function as the ideal candidate for the Dad of the Year award – artfully juggling his law practice, three babies, two toddlers and me – and somehow, doing it all with a smile of his face.

Don’t misunderstand though – it isn’t all roses! I feel like our life is like that old nursery rhyme… when it’s good, it’s very very good and when it’s bad, it’s horrid! The good news is that the horrid days are few. I’ll share a few highlights (and lowlights!) with you here and have promised myself that I will share updates, observations and random thoughts (and yes, even pictures!) on a more routine basis – which is setting the bar fairly low given that I’ve, um, never contributed to my own blog! In any case, here goes…

When it’s good, it’s very very good…
Each morning when I walk into the babies’ room, I take a peek inside a crib and see one precious bundle sweetly snoozing with his bottom up in the air. As I marvel at the cuteness of it all, I have to wonder, is there anything cuter than a baby sleeping with his butt up? And then I realize that the only thing cuter than ONE baby asleep bottom-up is THREE babies asleep bottom-up! TOO CUTE!

Then I typically open the shades and am consistently in awe as I am greeted by one, two, three little heads that pop up like little groundhogs to greet the day with great big goofy, toothless grins – and these wondrous grins, I might add, are all directed at me. This is very very good.

… but when it’s bad, it’s horrid.
It might be just moments after this sun-filled reverie that, well, all hell breaks loose. Though the following event is the exception, not the norm, it is nonetheless an event we have faced in the past and will likely face again…
As I pick Kevin up to kiss his sweet smiling face and change his diaper, I notice that the aforementioned face is covered with snot. As is his entire mostly bald head. Additionally, to my dismay, there is dog hair stuck in the snot, which comes as a bit of a surprise given that our 80 pound canine pal Finnegan was most certainly not sleeping in the crib! In any case, with Kevin cleaned up, I turn my attention to Declan – and notice the nasty stench emanating from his crib. Oh no, I think with dread as I hoist him out. But, oh yes, I am facing a dramatic case of back-poo. Gross. Up to the neck, stinky gross back poo.

I decide I will need a cup of coffee before I take on this challenge and head downstairs to discover Des cursing at the coffeemaker because something is clogged and his super-strong brew, typically as black as night, is the color of, well, back poo. Not good.

I head back upstairs to find Liam (always an eager reporter), who excitedly informs me that Ciara has woken up with something “wet, smelly and gross” in her bed. I take a peek in and find my poor little lady covered in vomit. After cleaning her up, I return to the babies, where I decide to take the path of least resistance and change Cormac. He is not snotty, he is not stinky, he is sweet and he is happy to see me. As I bask in the joy of only having to change a wet diaper, I let my guard down and am christened, once again, by Cormac the Freestyle Whizzer.

As I go to shower and get ready for work, I have to wonder if anyone else I know has been elbow-deep in boogers, back-poo and barf all before 8AM. I also wonder how I forgot to pick up my pants at the cleaners and how I will squeeze my post-baby body into anything in my closet but, that is clearly a story for another day.

Like I said, most days are very good days. And some days are very bad days. I usually know which kind of a day it will be well before 9AM. And, good or bad, they all fly by far too fast… leaving very little time to update this blog. Which, as you see, I have found a way to do tonight -- as yet another good day comes to a close.