The next chapter

The next chapter

If you ask David if he likes school, find something to hold onto before he answers — YES! YES! YES! YES! — his excitement might knock you over. He comes home smiling and amiable, talking about his new friends. He hasn’t been hungry, moody, or overly tired — something I worried about in the weeks

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Holding hands above the chaos

What did you do on Valentine’s Day? I know, it’s practically March and it feels like May outside. I’m a little late on the Valentine’s Day thing. In the Krieger household, the stomach bug that seemed to be hitting everyone around us finally got around to us the weekend before Valentine’s Day. One by one

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Krieger Christmas 2016

Krieger Christmas 2016

On Christmas morning, before opening presents, Tom sat with the kids and read the Christmas story from the Bible. It’s something he started last year, and when he told me the idea I told him it was horrible. It would make the kids resent the Bible, I said. It would be a wrestling match, I

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A quick look at the family gene pool

This morning at preschool drop off, a friend of mine commented that Thomas looks a lot like his dad. I agreed, and I actually hear that a lot. In fact, I hear that about all our kids. They look SO MUCH LIKE TOM. I said, “Yeah, he does. But let me show you something.” And then

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Halloween 2016

The kids had their costumes planned for weeks, maybe even months before Halloween. An octopus for David, a butterfly fairy for Mary Virginia (heavy on the butterfly, light on the fairy), and a hand-me-down dragon for Thomas. Then the day before Halloween, Mary Virginia called an audible and switched to the most terrifying costume of

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3s and 4s

3s and 4s

This morning my kids woke up at 5:30 a.m. because they were SO EXCITED! SO EXCITED FOR THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL! Perhaps they knew I was worried about getting out the door on time. Just doing their part to help; I appreciate it. Mary Virginia looks like she’d been crying for the past 15

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Summer vacation

A few weeks ago we went on our annual summer vacation with Tom’s family. This year we went to Lake Anna for the first time. We had an awesome trip, our house was perfect for little ones — a sandy beach area, shallow water, lots of grass for playing, and even a screened-in eating area so

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F-I-V-E-!

David is five years old today. FIVE! And he still weighs less than the amount of weight I gained when I was pregnant with him. Everyone knows about the terrible twos, and then you have a three-nager. There is no similar catch-phrase for four-year olds. Or if there is I’ve never heard it. Four was such

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Four generations

Tom’s paternal grandparents visited from Pittsburgh last weekend. The trip from Pennsylvania to Virginia is a long one and they aren’t able to visit often, so when they do it’s particularly special. To mark the occasion, I balanced my camera on an up-turned bench and a bunch of encyclopedias and dusted off the self-timer. And also,

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A party fit for a mermaid

A party fit for a mermaid

Every year as my kids’ birthdays approach, I swear I’m not going to do it. Then, after the birthdays, I swear I’m never going to do it again. The parties, I mean. They’re just too much work. The cleaning, the food, all that prep. And then there’s the small matter that Mary Virginia asked me

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When I was three, and free to explore

When I told Mary Virginia that I was excited for her birthday and she said, “Mo-o-mmy, excited is only for kids!” Whoops. Perhaps I should work on my enthusiasm. We are celebrating with ducks, purple, Cinderella, and 36 cupcakes. Everything that makes Mary Virginia light up. Three years ago today Tom went to a concert and

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One year

One year

Today is Thomas’s birthday. At 12 months, Thomas can eat an entire hotdog by himself. He is nowhere close to walking, weaning, or sleeping through the night, though. He does hold my thumb while not-doing those things, though, so I’m not only complaining. We celebrated by having a party last Sunday. It was almost a week early, but family

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Thomas’s baptism

Thomas’s baptism

Last Sunday, just before his first birthday, Thomas was baptized. Baptism is a practice in which the pastors of a church increase the faith of parents by asking them to stand on stage with their young children. (Picture Tom reading this, looking up at me and saying in a stern voice, “Amanda. Do not make

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Deja baby

I get a lot of comments about how similar my kids look. “There’s a Krieger prototype,” I always respond. The truth is, though, I see my kids’ personalities so clearly that I really don’t think David and Mary Virginia look alike at all. And I used to joke that I could interchange the boys’ baby

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Putting on our actual Easter best

Putting on our actual Easter best

Last Thursday I dressed my kids in their Easter clothes, took them out in the front yard, and made them take re-do Easter photos. I did this because Easter was rainy, hectic, and we didn’t get photos. I also did this because, apparently, I’m insane. My kids are going to grow up with stories of

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Hippity hoppity, happy Easter day

As holiday celebrations go, we had a very low-key Easter this year. Easter baskets on table, hard-boiled eggs and jelly beans for breakfast. Simple, and still, we were positively scrambling out the door to get to church on time. At some point in the chaos of getting seven people dressed and out the door my

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A daddy and his daughter

A daddy and his daughter

Last weekend Tom took Mary Virginia to a Father Daughter Dance. As he was getting ready, I encouraged him to put on a suit instead of a sport coat. “Some of the dads will be wearing tuxes, Tom. And come here, look. Elizabeth Phillips has already posted photos. Come look at what Sloan’s wearing.” Tom didn’t even

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And now something you haven’t yet seen on the Internet: pictures of my kids in the snow

And now something you haven’t yet seen on the Internet: pictures of my kids in the snow

If you’ve read this website for three or four minutes you might already know that winter is not my favorite season. I’ve been known to shiver uncontrollably as soon as the temperatures dip below 70 degrees. When we started hearing about Snowstorm Jonas I just ignored it because that’s my favorite way to deal with problems. I act

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Laughing all the way

The Monday before Christmas I drove to Rockville, MD by myself with all three kids. I was very, very nervous. It’s just a 2-hr. drive, and I know, two hours is not a big deal. I have friends who have flown across the country, and across the Atlantic Ocean with kids. My sister flew from Taiwan

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Big-brother, dream-killer

Mary Virginia: Look Mommy! I’m twirling! I look like Cinderella! David: No, Mary. You look like Mary in a dress. Mary Virginia: Mommy, can I wear that alligator shirt? David: Uh, Mary, it’s not an alligator. It’s a dragon. Mommy: David, Mary Virginia is pretending. If she wants to pretend this is an alligator costume she can,

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Thanksgiving 2015

I don’t know why, but I always feel cliche saying I’m thankful for family on Thanksgiving. Because that’s what everyone says. I’d like to be more original. Profound. But what else is there? I’m thankful for high-speed wi-fi? For drive-thrus? That I’m raising three children after dishwashers were invented? Ok, those are valid. But what is more profound

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A very happy Halloween

For some reason I’m lazy and unprepared when it comes to every aspect of my life except  the holidays. We have a “Happy Halloween” banner in our dining room, pipe-cleaner spiders lurking around the house, and I ordered Mary Virginia’s dress on September 1 because I could not wait another day. Technically, I made David’s

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My biggest boy turns four

Right around this time of year in my house, it feels like all we do is blow out candles, eat birthday cake and celebrate — which might be the best feeling ever. David turned four on Sunday, something he’s been looking forward since the day he turned three. We started the celebration this weekend with a

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Water dog

Every morning David asks me what we’re going to do. Is it a school day? Or a park day? Is someone coming over? Is today a church day? Then he gets down to it. “Mommy, is today a swimming day?” No, son, it’s not. That’s my usual answer. Except when we were on vacation. On vacation every day was

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And now for some rest and relaxation at the lake

And now for some rest and relaxation at the lake

We went on vacation with Tom’s family a few weeks ago and it was, um, full. Full, which is a euphemism for crazy, exhausting, hectic. Hectic. That actually nails it. Synonyms for hectic include: frantic, frenzied, feverish, manic, busy, active, fast and furious, fast-paced. But instead of hectic, I’ll get back to that euphemism. It was

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Goodbyes

For the past ten years, my sister and her family have lived overseas. It’s taken us every bit of those ten years to get used to the distance. I remember, at one point, thinking it was odd that I wasn’t familiar with my sister’s wardrobe. It’s a minor thing, but part of the transition that

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Namesake

Namesake

It was my idea to name our third baby after his daddy. And, ugh, that sentence is an example of how confusing it can be to have two people in your family with the same name. Saying “…to name Thomas after Tom” sounds convoluted. So far we’re calling the baby “Thomas” or more often “baby Thomas.”

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The arrival – Thomas’s birth story, part 2

The arrival – Thomas’s birth story, part 2

This isn’t the craziest birth story you’ll ever read. It isn’t the most dramatic or fastest or the closest call. But it is my craziest birth story. I’ve already told this story several times, and each time I feel a bit like I’m lying, or at least exaggerating because the timeline just doesn’t feel real. Whenever I tell it, I

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Support staff

Support staff

One thing I didn’t expect about having kids is the arranging required to do absolutely anything outside of the normal schedule. You take this kid, I’ll take this kid, Mimi will pick up that kid, and ugh, I wasn’t even thinking about their carseats. Do we have enough Goldfish and carseats? The arranging is why moms just stop

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April flowers

April flowers

Mary Virginia loves babies. She acts like an over-eager grandmother when she hears about an infant. She gets so excited that she starts talking in falsetto, and has to channel her energy into frantically knitting tiny sweaters and bootees. Then when she’s actually in the room with an infant, she transforms into a middle-school-aged boy with a crush. She

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Easter weekend 2015

Easter weekend 2015

It’s becoming an Easter tradition for our family to participate in David’s preschool race and Easter egg hunt. Tom ran last year but this year he volunteered to help. Which reminds me, sometime after the half-marathon, Tom and I retired from running and all other forms of exercise. We just decided to surrender; our kids

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Easter smiles

Pretty dresses, a toddler-sized sport coat, Tom in a tie, and our last Easter as a family of four. As if I needed another excuse to take a family photo. Before we left for church, our kids were more than happy to sit with my parents’ dog for photos. They sat there and smiled perfectly. We had plenty

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Good Friday

Every year spring seems a bit like a miracle. Even my yard, which was cold and brown a week ago, is blooming. The past few weeks have felt unrelenting. We have dear friends who are mourning a great loss, those waiting, aching for answered prayer, others who are trusting God for healing and His sovereign care. It feels heavy.

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