Greetings! It’s been a minute since I’ve posted any content. I’ve been busy with the kids and their many flavors of shenanigans, and also busy building out my podcasting brand. I am the Captain of my own virtual cruise ship called The Cave Boat.
Pics from our recent Monterey trip
Easter 🐣 was amazing, and we got some wonderful pics
What else? They are back in school full time rather than 5 days a week for 2.5 hours today. We continue to guide but not prescribe, giving them the flexibility to grow into who they are meant to be, while keeping them busy and challenged. It’s a delicate balancing act. But they are happy and thriving. Getting them accustomed to the concepts of mindfulness and gratitude are a priority. They have a lot to be grateful for, but they need to stay grounded. It is arguably the most important work we are doing in our lives at this point as their parents.
Also, April 7th was the 13th anniversary of my father’s passing. Believe it or not they know a lot about my father and talk about him like they actually met him. Like in the movie Coco, we have pictures of the dearly departed so we remember them and don’t forget. In this way they live on, and that’s exactly what is happening with Grandpa Bill. I was back East last month and got to visit his grave site. It is always so peaceful there.
Time to check in with the curious and provide some updates. The kids are doing great! Healthy and thriving. They have been back in school for in person instruction 🏫 about 10 weeks now, and did very well in their first report card from their teacher. They are definitely all different, with their strengths being very unique. The only thing surprising that I heard was that Christopher is a bit of a class clown 🤡🤦🏾♂️
Ok, now for the barrage of cute pics. My how they have grown!
The kids are getting excited about Christmas 🎄. The tree went up shortly after Halloween 🎃
I am releasing an audio version of the book on Audible soon. Below is the cover!
Others changes include me taking over Michaela’s bedroom as my home office. She now shares a room with Emma. That has been interesting. She is trying to take over as the oldest 😂
It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog post, and since I’m up and not going back to sleep 😴 , I figured I would get the followers updated information about what the trio have been up to.
For starters, they are back in school 🏫 in person 5 days a week and are loving it. This is week 3 now since the schools reopened in Placer County. The Rocklin Unified School District came out with a pretty comprehensive 29 page reopening guide. It outlines how they will keep students and teachers as safe as possible and the protocols that will be followed should anyone become sick with whatever. Our kids actually now wear face shields with cute animals at the top of the shield to make it fun. Those get wipes down with disinfecting wipes when they get picked up in the afternoons. So far, 3 weeks in and no colds or the usual crud kids come home with at this age.
Ah, yes and the trio turn SIX on October 23rd! The party will not be like it was in previous years thanks to this blasted pandemic. Really tired of this “new abnormal” – it has altered the fabric of social interaction in mind boggling ways 😒
They have quickly made friends at school, and that is no surprise as they are very outgoing. There is an AM cohort and a PM cohort, and our kids are in the PM cohort and all in the same class, which has 7 students total. So they make up a majority of the class! 😂
Here is a quick summary of the kids’ interests:
Michaela: fashion, gymnastics 🤸♀️, art 🖼
Emma: Singing 🎤 (she can carry a tune!!! 🎶), drawing and reading
Christopher: riding bikes 🚲, building things and helping out others with stuff . He will do anything for his sisters, and they take advantage of his height. He is the distributor, handing out vitamins each morning and melatonin at night.
Leader in $50 copay visits to the ER: Christopher (3) 😂😘
They have a new play area out back now that we have had a patio cover built. They play out back for hours, role playing and building things. My wife had other idea for the space, but the kids said otherwise 😂
Christopher has been doing speech therapy sessions with Kaiser and now also with the school 🏫. He is doing great and is finally sounding out the “L” in words. He initially slowed down and paused and caught himself and now it is second nature. He charmed his speech therapist at Kaiser my showering her with custom drawings made just for her. That resulted in her giving him more than one M & M treat repeatedly. 🤭😊
The dynamics with our trio have changed significantly. Michaela and Christopher used to be really tight, but now it has shifted to Christopher latching on to Emma and at times excluding Michaela, who has noticed and now called him out for it. Her new favorite word to spell is actually “excluding” 😂.
Michaela and Christopher fight for Emma’s playtime attention. I think she likes being in demand by them both. Oh, to be a “middle child” 😂.
They “rotate” turns spending the weekend at Grandma and Grandpa’s and keep close tabs on who’s turn it is and how long someone stayed (sometimes someone gets a third night). That is when we noticed the dynamic really started to change. Two kids on a weekend is a piece of cake. There is very little fighting and us parents can get adult stuff done and actually think without three flavors of constant demands. It’s not all fun and ice cream and whatever else goes on there in terms of spoiling – there is intensive learning happening when they visit. They read a lot, make crafts, read some more and have plenty of breaks in between.
When they return through, something switches and the organized chaos ensues 😂
The audio book 📖 🎧 project is coming along and I am excited about releasing an audio version of the book soon so it can be listened to. It is being narrated by yours truly 😊
The book has been published for over a year now. The kids don’t quite grasp why they are on a book cover that will be out there for folks to read long after I’m gone, but the story of how they got here remains remarkable.
I created a form so that people can request signed copies of the book. If you’re interested the link is below:
The kids started virtual learning last week and it has been an unmitigated disaster. And it has no end in sight…but I digress 😊
The good in it is that they are less likely to get sick since they are home. The bad parts are that it is very disorganized so far and the parents are all frustrated. Fail to plan, plan to fail, and it seems like the planning wasn’t put into this endeavor and it shows. Ok now I really digress 🤭
Here are some cute recent photos of the trio:
They are certainly a handful. But they have adjusted well to this “new abnormal” and they are still enjoying each other’s company (instant playmates).
The dynamics have changed between the three recently. Christopher used to be really tight with Michaela but now he is really tight with Emma and has excluded Michaela at times. We have intervened when we see him do it.
Christopher has been attending speech therapy appointments. He’s progressing nicely but it has been challenging to break some bad habits. As parents it’s hard for us to get him to accept correction as we are mom and dad – par for the course though. The teacher is impressed with how hard he works during their appointments. And he is already starting to win her over with his charm. He even made a gift for her and brought it to her. How cute is that?
Michaela is very bright. Learning really comes easy to her. She sounds out words when reading, can count to 100 and beyond, and is very expressive when drawing during craft time. Kindergarten will be a breeze for her, despite this crazy distance learning setup.
They all get to work with grandma when they go visit, so that has made a tremendous difference. While what happens at grandma’s stays at grandma’s, it’s not all fun, ice cream, treats and pampering – a lot of learning happens.
May has been a challenging month. There was a lot going on, with my brother’s birthday (May 9th) mine (May 11th), Mother’s Day and Angelique’s birthday (May 14th) all falling on this month. My father’s birthday falls on May 29th, and he would have been 74.
The kids have been keeping us busy. They sleep, they eat a ton, they grow, and grow, and grow some more. I’ve tried to get them out for bike rides and/or walks as much as I can, but they have still found plenty of opportunities to go crazy. Blame it on cabin fever, but as much as they love being outdoors, they are noticing that they have been unable to interact with other kids for quite some time now. It’s kind of weird. My kids love to say hi to folks, and it seems that a lot of parents have instructed their kids to say nothing back and run the other way. So now we’re not only seeing social defiance as people flood back into cities around the globe, but also anti-social distancing taking shape. Everyone is almost immediately skeptical of the other person and almost treats them like they’re infected. This new normal is going to be interesting!
They long for the day when “the world feels better”, as they like to say. Like me, they thrive on interactions with people, so this is starting to frustrate them being largely confined to their home.
They’ve all had a turn getting their first chiropractic adjustment, which has been great for them.
Grandma showed Michaela how to sew. They sure do love learning!
Kindergarten starts in August at the new school. It’s close enough to where if they cooperate in the morning, they can either walk or we can ride bikes to school with them – we’ll see. In TK, Christopher and Emma were in the same class. In Kindergarten, we were given a choice, and we decided to see how they do with each in their own class. Christopher does whatever his sisters tell him to, and Emma took advantage when they were in the same class, so we’re hoping that this helps them be even more independent of one another. We shall see how it goes.
Christopher was getting speech therapy at the other school before it was all closed down due to COVID, so we lost some momentum in that arena. However, I’ve partnered with my mother in law and we make Powerpoint presentations using our own voice and we have them all practice. I’ve made extra ones for him with words that he can improve on, and I expand upon it as I hear other words to add to the list. They love hearing familiar voices.
I tip my cap to all working parents trying to navigate this shelter in place order. Even with things opening back up, it is challenging as the days seem longer, and, at least in my household, the chaos seems magnified. I think I’ve got the new grey hairs to prove it 🙂
But there’s one constant no matter what: lots of LOVE
Book sales have picked up in May and people are liking what they’re reading in the book. You can order your copy at http://tripleblessingbook.com
I’m still waiting for the first iPhone/iPad order to come in through the Apple Books app. It is a really fun experience reading the book on an iPad or iPhone through the books app. You can find it by searching for the words Triple Blessing Michael Cave. Be the first to order it through that path!
The kids are settling into their school routine. I have had a few opportunities to take them to school and it is very cool to see Emma and Christopher, who are in the same class, say goodbye to us in the morning and meet up with their classmates. They are getting used to the routine and structure. They are learning a lot on school. Michaela can spell her name and sounds out each letter of the alphabet when tracing the letters. They have also quickly made a few networks of friends and routinely rattle off new names of friends each day. They are starting to go on after school play dates.
They also just turned FIVE years old! Can’t believe it has been 5 years already.
The requests for play dates after school is totally new for us. As is the mass blasts to the entire class or birthday party invites. Given that that Michaela is in a separate class, we have decided to not let them go to parties that only one child was invited to – that will have to happen eventually but not now. We can defer navigating the feelings of disappointment that are sure to follow until Kindergarten.
Emma has been making a lot of progress with words and can draw her name. She loves to learn.
The kids love their new neighborhood. They love going out and exploring and saying hi to new people. Catches everyone off guard!
Sorry about the delay between posts – things have been extremely busy as of late on multiple fronts (no pun intended).
The kids were entered into the lottery system for Montessori schoolS, but we never heard back, which means that none of their names came up based on the selection criteria. Their best chance to get in was #4 in the list of about 8 selection criteria. What is cool is that had one child been selected, they would have all gotten in automatically. Oh well, next year.
We had registered them for our Plan B option, which is a school in Granite Bay. We found out this week that they all had been accepted and were enrolled, so Angelique brought them in yesterday for assessment.
Each child was brought back to a room alone with a teacher to have a conversation and to see what they know. Angelique got to talk to one of the teachers afterwards and found out that they just had a conversation with the child to see what colors, numbers and shapes they knew and to gauge their speech skills. One of the teachers that spoke with the kids asked if they had ever been to speech therapy. Angelique assumed that the teacher had spoken with Christopher, so she went on to explain that he only started talking regularly when he turned 4 and that while he struggles with certain sounds and words he is catching up quickly.
It turns out that the teacher that asked her that question hasn’t met Christopher, she met one of the girls instead, and if she met Emma she was probably floored that Emma speaks so well. Every words is clearly pronounced and her sentences are complete and well thought out. Then again she has been talking the longest and has the largest vocabulary.
In any case, until school starts the rest of the summer will be dedicated to more learning to prepare them for this transitional kindergarten adventure they will soon embark on. Being born in October, transitional kindergarten was the best option for them. Angelique also asked if they could be kept together. Christopher still needs to see a familiar face, so this should help. Plus one of our neighbors have a 4 year old daughter that the kids are playmates with that will also be attending that school.
I can’t believe they are about to go to school – time is flying! Angelique is ready for a break I’m sure, as they will be in school all day. This will be a test of how strong their bond has become. They are around each other all day and their are certainly alliances, but they will have to look out for one another as there will be new dynamics they will have to content with, and new feelings to navigate based on new experiences.
The kids are very social and make friends easily, so that is good.
Birthdays and Mother’s Day
On Sunday, we got together with family at Grandma and Grandpa’s to celebrate my 40th birthday, along with Mother’s Day and Angelique’s 44th birthday.
The kids are very proud when they trace their own names. It’s so cute.
Last but not least, Michaela has developed a legendary sense of fashion. In the pic below she is actually wearing her mommy’s pants, but somehow pulled it off as a new fashion statement. She could probably walk into high school wearing a Glad bag and nobody would say anything – in fact they might copy her and a new fad would be born!