Sunday, July 20, 2008

Uh, Uh, Uh, Uh, Stayin' Alive, Stayin' Alive! - UPDATED

Fourth of July Family Picture
(Laine, Danna, Forrest, Pius)

Mommy and Forrest - No, he's not our favorite....the others were all down for a nap.

Forrest and Daddy all decked out for the 4th (if you're wondering why you can't see Forrest's bottom half, it's because he's in camo)

Danna snuggling up to Uncle Jim (AKA Uncle Slammer)

Despite Forrest and Laine's best efforts at sending mom, dad and themselves to an early grave, we're all still alive and kicking! We took our first road trip to Colorado for the Selenke Family Reunion last weekend. We tried to keep the babies on schedule as closely as we could. It worked pretty well, for the most part.

We decided to have everything packed before their 4th feed of the day (they get 5 bottles total). After their 4th bottle, we loaded them and any last second items and took off for the 3.5 hr trip to Grainfield, KS. This is where Billy's Great Aunt Laverna lives and is, conveniently, almost exactly 1/2 way to Denver (from this point on referred to as "The greatest city on earth because it houses the Denver Broncos" or TGCOEBIHTDB. Not exactly an abbreviation, but we'll make that sacrifice). The trip to Grainfield got a little rough towards the middle. Fortunately, Pius has an infinite infatuation with his feet and kept himself occupied with them until he fell asleep. Danna was a sweetheart almost the whole way - totally un-diva-ish. Laine and Forrest, on the other hand, had enough diva for all the babies and the next group of ladies on "America's Next Top Model". After about 45 minutes on the road, they decided they'd had enough and let us know about their dissatisfaction for the rest of the trip. I know I've said it before, but I think our kids have Sundowner's Syndrome. Normally reserved for the elderly with dementia, our sweet, darling children seem to completely melt down at twilight and then magically turn back into the sweet babies they are after it turns dark. After what seemed like 10 hours, we made it to Aunt Laverna's. We let the babies roll around and play awhile, then we changed them, fed them and loaded them all back up and headed for TGCOEBIHTDB. They slept the ENTIRE way there and Billy and I talked about what we would name our next set of quads.

Had to take a moment to remember the 15 minutes of quiet that Forrest gave us after he passed out sucking his thumb.

Pius pretty much kept himself occupied with this baseball, his feet and the carseat strap. I think he may grow up to be like MacGyver and will be able to build a bomb out of a string, a paper clip and a piece of cat hair.

Don't be fooled by this sweet smile. He's the devil in disguise.
Laine TRYING to be a good boy

Danna wanted me to be sure we got her pretty toes in the picture!

We made it to TGCOEBIHTDB at around 0200 a.m. Colorado time and unloaded the kids at Billy's Aunt Debbie's house. We fed them a small bottle and put them to bed in their PeaPods. The next morning my sister, Rachel, drove from Colorado Springs to meet up with us at Debbie's. She spent the weekend with us at the reunion. She laughed when she saw the little tent-like contraptions, saying that they reminded her of the little Gremlin pods. I really don't care what they look like.....they're AWESOME (thanks, Murray Crew, for the idea)!

Danna with her Great Aunt Debbie

Pius with 1st cousin TWICE removed, Joanie (my mom taught me all about geneology)

No, Forrest didn't pass out after a few Bud Lights.....cousin Kristen talked him to sleep (see his poor, chapped cheeks?)

In the morning, we fed them their 1st bottle at Aunt Debbie's and then headed to Arvada to see Great Aunt Armella and Uncle Bill Gerber and many of their children/grandchildren. My Aunt Charlotte and Uncle Dale and cousin Carmen also came from Littleton to see the babies and us. After a wonderful breakfast, we fed the babies and headed to the reunion site near Fort Collins.

Billy and me with Aunt Armella, Uncle Bill and the quadsies

Uncle Dale, Aunt Charlotte and cousin Carmen with the babies

We had a great time showing the babies off to their aunts, uncles and cousins. I think Pius had a little altitude sickness because he wouldn't eat very well and always wanted to sleep. They also all came home with red, chapped cheeks from the dry mountain air. Although they all had bouts of fussiness, Danna and Pius easily took first place in the behavior department while Forrest and Laine continued their high maintenance ways and tied for last.

We were at the reunion Friday, Saturday and then left on Sunday. Headed back to TGCOEBIHTDB and hung out until their 4th feed. Left for Grainfield, dealt with Forrest's 2 hours of screaming, fed them at Aunt Laverna's and headed home sweet home. I think the babies were WORN OUT because they ended up sleeping until about 1000 a.m. that morning. It's taken us about a week to recuperate, hence the delayed posting.

Sidenote: The banging on the roof of the car was caused by the topper we borrowed from our neighbors. We figured out that the driver side roof rack was loose and caused the topper to continuously bang. We tried cushioning the blows with beach towels jammed under the point of impact. Now there are 3 beach towels somewhere along the roadsides of Colorado and Kansas. We ended up pulling over at a weigh station and unloading everything from the topper into the van. That way, if the topper managed to fly off, we would only have to worry about one thing smashing into nearby drivers. Plus, it would've been awful trying to recover all the other items from the highway. I can just see it.....human Frogger (think Atari).

Billy trying hard to keep smiling on the stretch of road from TGCOEBIHTDB to Grainfield

Me trying really, really hard not to smother Laine and Forrest with a pillow. Insanity, anybody?!

Other than our Colorado adventures, not much else is new. Danna will be getting a weight check on Tuesday. No teeth yet. No "official" crawling - just alot of rolling and scooting (working on installing the stair gate now). Forrest has learned to hold is own bottle and Pius isn't far behind (HALLELUIA!). We feel comfortable leaving them home alone now.

We have lots of activities planned next weekend, including a visit from my sister and brother-in-law, Emily and Andy, from Germany (this will be their 1st time meeting the babies), a Haag Family reunion at my cousin's lake, cousin Jennea's wedding, and other family get-togethers. Should be LOTS of fun!

Swimming at Grampy and Grammy Graf's house

Enjoy the pics and videos! Sorry the video is so long....I didn't have time to clip and edit.

P.S. Why didn't anyone ever tell me how stupid I sound in these videos? I need to learn to keep my mouth shut while filming. I apologize for the unnecessary commentary.

Pius would eat, sleep and live in this thing if we would allow it

Okay, so who wants to wake a sleeping baby, anyway!

Danna Banana

Laine Man


The Graf's

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


That's right, folks. The Graf Quads out-danced the Tubre Quads by a very slim margin. As Jaclyn put it, "6 stinking votes!" We thought those 6 votes smelled pretty good.

So here's to all of you who voted for the good guys....a little victory dance footage from the babies and Daddy (who, might I add, looks ravishing in his Crimson Tide tee - Roll Tide).

We have to say that this has been one of the most intense 6 days of our lives. We have no more nails to bite off. But that's mainly because Forrest has already chewed everyone's down to a nub. The Graf's and Tubre's are far too competitive to try anything like this again - at least for a little while. But we're open for suggestions on future Tubre/Graf battles!

Hope this can get everyone through until we return home from Colorado. We're going to the Selenke family reunion and will be there until Monday. We'll have lots more to post after that, including some 4th of July pics and videos.

Thanks again to ALL the voters on both sides. You made this competition fun and exciting. Your 2008 Dance War victors will try to keep you entertained and make you proud!

Billy, Moni, Pius, Forrest, Danna and Laine

Friday, July 4, 2008

Let the Dancing Commence

Edit 7/09/08 at 7:45 p.m.

CHAMPIONSHIP!!! Thank you to all our devoted fans. We will post more as soon as the kids are in bed, including our very own victory dance. We had to completely revise ours since the Tubre kids stole the "We Are the Champions" song. I know, I know, it doesn't make any sense. But I couldn't let Jaclyn break their little hearts by telling them they lost. We'll let them have their moment in the sun, too. Woo-hoo!

Edit 7/09/08 at 12:05 a.m.

Whew! It's been a close race today. Neck-and-neck all day long! Thank you to everyone who has voted (especially the ones who voted for the Graf's). Just wanted to remind anyone who may be holding out to cast their vote, that the polls will close today (Wednesday, July 9th) around 5:30 p.m. CST. Laine wanted me to say thank you to all his supporters. He said that he couldn't have made it this far without you all! Pius and Forrest demand a second chance. Danna just wants a new outfit and hair pretty. Peace out!

Edit 7/07/08 at 12:25 p.m.

Man, this rivalry is getting nasty! Jaclyn is sending me HATE texts left and right, bragging about how they're winning. She even called Laine ugly. Now Torey is calling Billy fat. That's where I draw the line. We're just big-boned! It's not over 'til the fat lady sings! Come on all you Graf/Haag/Dewey/Selenke's and friends...let's show the swamp trash what we're made of. We need a little more crap talk on the comments.

FINALLY, the Grafs got their act together and are ready. Billy and I may have overestimated our childrens' dancing abilities, but they gave it their best effort. Also, pardon the videography. Daddy thought it would be fun to dance along during some of the filming. Enjoy the show, and don't forget to vote! The polls are located on the left hand side of this blog. Please choose between the Graf/Tubre families and then the Graf siblings. Jaclyn also has a poll on her site for her cupcakes, but there is only one polling station for the big rivalry. So....BRING IT, you swamp-lovin' Tubre Quads!

To see the Tubre version of Dance Wars, click here.

Happy 4th of July!

The Graf Dance Squad