Conor is 5

Written by Justin posted on Oct 15, 2013 in Birthday, Conor

Here at the Grimm family we like to treat the 5th Birthday as somewhat of a milestone. Kayce has a video commemorating the first 5 years of life, and here is Conor’s. The best and hardest part about making these videos is trying to piece out the moments and widdle them down to 5 minutes. Happy Birthday, Conor!! I would make you 500 videos if you wanted.

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Terrible Twosome

Written by Justin posted on Oct 11, 2013 in Dakota, Devin

Recently, I was discussing the latest bout of mischief the twins have gotten themselves into. This person proclaimed I needed to start a journal to track everything they have bent, broken, flushed, destroyed, obliterated, soiled. We have not spoken about it much on here, but I think the time has come. Devin & Dakota are mischief MONSTERS.

Some kids are accident prone. These two are pro-accident. If you take your eyes off of them for just one minute, they are inevitably doing something they should not be doing. It’s like an inherent trait they were born with. Or maybe it’s because it’s two of them. I can’t pin it. No one else with twins has expressed similar issues to us.

Here’s the rundown so far:

  • iPad – We are now on our second iPad thanks to these guys grabbing a kitchen chair. Pulling it across the room to the counter. Grabbing the iPad and smashing it on the ground. Sidenote: I put the iPad out of it’s misery while trying to replace the screen with one of those “anyone-can-do-this-kits”. Anyone but me.
  • Coffee Pot – Easter morning 2013, we are scrambling to get all the kids ready and out the door for our usual tour of Northern Illinois. Someone took eyes off these guys for two minutes and they pulled the chair over, grabbed the glass pot, and smashed it on the counter.  Pieces of glass littered the counter and floor and nary a scratch on the them.  After this, we decided to move the knives and anything else sharp/breakable off the counter.
  • Fish Tank – The older two boys have a small 10 gallon fish tank they keep on a dresser in their room. The twins enjoy taking whatever they can find and stuffing it in the tank (shoes, diapers, toys, crayons). Which would not be so terrible if they weren’t removing the full hood (light on) and stuffing it into the water along with those objects. Electricity is not a concept I can express to them yet. We now need to close their door at all times.
  • Marker tips – All kids are going to get ahold of markers/crayons and write on the walls. Ours are no different. But do yours eat the tips off of 14 of them in 90 seconds? Ya, didn’t think so.  Twins ate the tips off of 14 non-scented markers.  Luckily they were crayola and non-toxic. Sidenote: We never had to call poison control for Kayce or Conor. We have needed to call it 3 times for the twins.
  • Toothbrushes – These two have lost more toothbrushes than you would believe. AND WE HAVE NO IDEA WHERE THEY ARE GOING! Except for one. They decided to throw it into the toilet, then Conor promptly decided to pee on it. That was fun fishing out.

People think they have an idea of what it is like to manage a brood of kids all at relatively young ages. You really can’t unless you’re living it. Our extended families get a glimpse at family events or visits to the house, but even they really can’t sympathize. I like to tell people my quiet and relaxation time is when I’m at work.



The last thing Dawn and I are looking for is a pity party. We are immeasurably thankful for the family we have become. Sure, 4 rambunctious boys 6 and under certainly gives you an appreciation for the quieter moments of the day. But I’m a nostalgia freak of sorts. It’s in my blood. Because of this, I realize how fleeting these times are. Some day I will be begging for the wild chases around the house when I get home from sitting in a 2+ hour daily commute. Or an impromptu bike ride. A push on the tire swing long past bedtime.  In the end, these guys have supplied me with enough joy to make up for the most destructive and embarrassing moments.

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First Kid, First Grade, First Day

Written by Justin posted on Aug 29, 2013 in Kayce, School

On Monday, this not-so-little-anymore guy started first grade. For Kayce, this will be his first “full” days of school.  Pre-school was a handful of hours two days/week. Kindergarten upped it and he started going every day, but again only for a few hours. Three days in to first grade and he is definitely coming home exhausted. The adjustment will take some time, but obviously a necessary one.

On the whole, this is our first child to be gone all day for the majority of the week. It’s not so hard on me because I’m off making widgets. For Dawn though, it’s a big change. This is her “baby” and having to share him with the world is not always an easy transition.

Likewise for Conor. Since birth, Kayce has been by his side. If not for the look and slight age difference, you would think we had two sets of twins the way. If you are a stranger to our family, Kayce and Conor are always together. One does not go anywhere without the other. Which, as a parent, feels like a big accomplishment. When siblings are as close as you imagined they might be.  Conor is too young to grasp the concept of Kayce being gone at school all day. So when the day finally came his world got turned upside down. Reports are he has been following Dawn around the house like a lost puppy. Luckily, his school starts back up next week. We went ahead and signed him up for an extra day/week and slightly longer hours. He could use it. Because of his late birthday, he’ll have had 3 years of preschool under his belt when all is said and done. He needs a good challenge.

Despite the OBVIOUS importance of school, this latest milestone has been a mixed bag of feelings. It’s indescribable to watch your child grow, mature and become more self-reliant. At the same time, we selfishly wish they would stay young and innocent forever. I never understood the desire to home school children, but now I do.

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Written by Justin posted on Aug 22, 2013 in Home
Neighbor BBQ

Since the moment we moved to the block in March of 2012 our neighbors have made us feel as if we were life-long residents.  Many of whom have been living on the block much longer than my lifetime.  They easily could have written us off as young disruptors.  With 4 kids under the age of 5 running around like a pack of wolves, I can only imagine the conclusions which might enter someone’s head.  Instead we have been treated like family. Daily greetings, tips on living in a town we were largely unfamiliar with, help with the yard, help with the kids. I never thought I’d enjoy a conversation about the weather until I met these folks. Plus, they absolutely adore the boys with a genuineness that can’t be faked. It’s been a very humbling experience.

As a kid, we had a neighbor for a few years who was the exact opposite. If a ball went over the fence, he kept it. If we stepped on his lawn, my dad heard about it. Thankfully, he moved away after a few years. I’d like to think my brothers and I drove him to it. So, I’m kind of the authority now on both ends of the spectrum. I’ve been shown how important it can be to welcome in that new family/couple/dude/lady who moves in next store.

Looking back, it seems odd to me that getting so welcomed at first felt, well, odd and foreign. So let’s get back to it. Do your part and welcome your neighbors, young or old. Have them over for a bbq or to share a pizza. We decided to and it made for one excellent night!

p.s. Last Friday, neighbor Bob (second one in on the right), he surprised us completely out of the blue with a pizza. It was from a place he had been telling us about. He “just wanted to see if we would like it”.  How amazingly awesome is that?!

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