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Mediating Madi "The Brute"

It has been fun and frustrating at times with these four girls. My only real regret is that I don't feel like I have enough time to devote to each one of them individualy. They all need a little one on one Dad time. It is very difficult to give individual attention unless you leave the house with that child. If I sit on the floor I am swarmed by all of them which, without exception, leads to some sort of scuffle.

I do have to say that we probably baby the twins more than we should, at least compared to the other two girls. But, can you blame us? We are still very much affected by our trials getting them here and healthy. I really don't think anyone who has not been through it could possibly understand. The emotions caused by seeing you children barely clinging to life are deep seated and for a long time linger just below the surface. I don't think that I will ever be the same. So yes we baby the babies even though they are approaching toddler stage.

Reagan and the twins, especially Madi, have a tumultuous relationship. Reagan doesn't understand yet that she can fend off the twins without pushing and shoving. It is a difficult situation disciplining Reagan for only trying to protect herself. Madison can be brutal. If a sibling has something that she wants she will literally tackle her, pull hair, and gouge eyes. And she does it all with no expresion on her face. Its kind of scary, she is a brute. If Madison has a goal she just goes and goes until she gets it. At least when it comes to her sisters. If she is not getting her way with Mom and Dad she resorts to laying face down on the floor and screaming, the "sack of potatos" technique. Reagan needs to have her space and when the twins invade that space she either shoves them down, which we discourage, or she stands there and screams, which we discourage. I almost prefer the shoving the twins down technique. When Reagan just stands there and screams it seems to encourage the twins to try to touch her more. They look like little Frankenstiens loping at her on unsteady legs with arms out stretched. And God forbid that the twins pick up one of her plush toys, "Lovies" as Kari has doubed them. Even if the twins pick them up to give them to Reagan the sight of one of them holding her prized possesions sends her into a near blind rage. She will rush forward and snatch the lovies from their grasp with tears streaming down her face and rush to the safety of another room. There is no explaining to her that the twins were trying to help.

On the other hand Reagan can be very sweet to the twins. On occation she will bring them toys, tickle them, and sometimes feed them. It is very touching to watch. Most times, however, we are just trying to keep the peace.

Rylee is very good with the twins. She is much more tollerant than Reagan. She doesn't throw a fit if they climb up on the same couch she is on, she actually encourages the twins to join her. She will put up with them climbing on her and doesn't totally lose her cool when they pull her hair. She doesn't like it mind you, but unlike Reagan she can deal with it most times.

Rylee is growing up so fast. I know that every parent says that sort of thing, but it is true. They grow up really fast. I am affaid that I am going to miss something. Her latest thing is pointing out all the things that she wants. Wether it is a catalog or a tv commercial she will point at nearly everything and pronounce "I want that!"
"Well...Christmas is coming. Maybe you will get that. But you know we don't always get everything we want, right?" in my usual reply. I think that only encourages her.

Kari and I are starting to get a little concerend about Reagan's speech. I have no doubt that she will be speaking clearly before she goes to college, but we feel that she should be speaking more clearly at this stage. Again, I wonder if maybe we have not been spending enough one on one time with her. We can understand many of her words and she obviously understands much of what we are saying to her, but I don't think anyone else would get much of what she says. She seems to have trouble with many of the major sounds, especially S, P, T, and R. The word more comes out as "moy", for example. This was cute for a little while, but we are starting to get concerend. I guess if there is a problem I would like to address it as soon as possible.

Not much else new to report. My last trip was totally uneventful. Except that the captain I was flying with felt the need to play the role of "flight instrutor" the entire trip. I will be the first to admit that I still have things to learn, but I have been flying for over 16 years and am a pretty competent pilot. Being micromanaged for a whole trip can be tedious. I am glad to be home.


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