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Still waiting for a home
By CHARLES MELTON
Another year has passed and Anniston, Belle, Camilee, Scarlett and Weston are still living with their grandfather in East Bremerton.
Their parents, Mike and Courtnee Stevenson, and their older sister, 5-year-old Lilli, are there, too, patiently waiting for their house in Keyport to finally be completed.
The quints, who are Kitsap Countys first, are almost 2 years old, and their mom Courtnee admitted it hasnt been easy living in such confined quarters.
Its tough, because our last couple of fund-raisers have fizzled out, she said.
Those fund-raisers were aimed at accumulating enough money to complete the house, which is now nothing more than an empty shell waiting for the sounds of the quints laughter to echo through its walls.
Mikes been doing the electrical after work and when he finally gets home, hes so tired that he doesnt have much time for anything else, Courtnee said.
The electrical work is but one part of the homes interior that needs to be completed before the family can finally move into a house of their own.
My dads been really good about it, but I know hed like to have his house back, she said.
With Lilli attending half-day preschool, its still a challenge to keep five precocious toddlers occupied and out of childlike mischief, Courtnee said.
Its all about routine and it seems like once I get used to one age, it flips again, she said.
The quints are early risers as theyre all up at 7 a.m. and dont settle down for their afternoon naps until about 12:30 p.m.
I try to have a little preschool, and well play with blocks and put them up and then do something else, she said.
Even though many people think of the quints as a collective, Courtnee said each of them has their own unique personality, which shines through more and more every day.
Camilees a Mamas girl and Westons a bigtime Mamas boy, she said.
Scarlett has already shown a knack for high fashion as she never goes anywhere without a pair of shoes, even if they dont always match her outfit.
The quints are all talking and the potty-training process is already in the works, she said.
They all say, no, and they like to take off their diapers and their clothes, she said.
During a normal day, if there is such a thing with quints, Courtnee said she does her best to stay on her routine and when the quints are down for a nap, she keeps going as she prepares dinner and cleans the house.
Thats the only time I really have to do anything, she said.
Now that the quints are past the newborn stage, Courtnee said she has been able to return to teaching aerobics three times a week and has her own photography business, which gives her a few regular outings outside the house.
However, its 10 p.m. each night when Courtnee said she finally gets her daily dose of peace and solitude to prepare for another unpredictable day as the mother of six children 5 and younger.
The quints are asleep, Lillis asleep and Mikes asleep, so I get my 30 minutes to watch whatever I want and I need that, she said.