five favorites (08/03)

What better way is there to kick off a Monday than with some fun things we’ve been up to lately? I still find so much gratitude when I write these posts, so even if they’re only for myself, they are definitely worth the time.

ONE. We introduced the girls to tie dye! They have been looking forward to it all summer long, and I was just waiting for shirts to go on sale so we could use the kit I already had. Everyone chose a different design, and we helped put the dye on. Daddy did his shirt last, so there wasn’t much dye left. We let the girls go crazy with the remaining dye and make his shirt however they wanted. It turned out pretty cool!

Eve was not into taking this picture at all. It kind of cracks me up. Real life, you guys. Always my little monkey.We all matched for our family walk. These little moments are so precious. TWO. Kaya, Kaelyn, and Nella decided that they wanted to make playdough one afternoon. All I did was print the recipe, and they executed it all on their own! It’s amazing to see how much they have grown to be able to do.
This kept them busy for hours… and kept me sweeping up playdough for days. Haha.Sensory play is the best!
THREE. After the girls finished their virtual race series a couple months ago, we let them choose if they wanted the commemorative medal or a race t-shirt. They all chose medals, but it took quite a while to get them in the mail. They finally came at the end of last week, and it was like a mini-Christmas. I loved their giant smiles as they ran around wearing them. They definitely earned these! This is one of the most genuine Nella smiles I’ve captured.FOUR. Our church Primary put on a “drive-through ice cream” activity last week. It was so simple, but it meant so much to the girls to get out and do something special. The pandemic has still changed things for them, and they miss going out as a family. I was okay with this since it was outdoors and low-attendance. We are definitely out of practice with leaving the house, though- we completely forgot the diaper bag and wipes to clean everyone up afterward. Thankfully, we were able to borrow some (especially since Eve was completely covered in popsicle juice just moments after I took this picture)!FIVE. Family movie nights are the best. I think the girls’ favorite part is the popcorn, but I love snuggling up with freshly-bathed babies in soft pajamas. There’s nothing better.
They’ve recently discovered the Sophia the First TV series, so we borrowed the movie from the library to get the whole backstory. They loved it.

five favorites (02/19)

I meant to post this last week, but, well, you already know what I’d probably say here. These pictures were too cute to pass up sharing, so I just had to take a few minutes to write this out!

ONE. We started back at Kangaroo Kids for the first time since before the holidays. These girls are always excited, and I don’t think it will ever get old. I love seeing them all climb into the ball pit together (Nella’s favorite thing is still trying to throw as many balls as she can out…)!Kaya and Kaelyn play together the entire hour. I’m so grateful that they’re best friends and truly love being with each other. I think maybe we should sign Kaya up for basketball for real… She is getting really good at shooting hoops (and there are much higher ones than this there, too). I also still think she’s going to end up pretty tall (although she doesn’t like to hear that for some unknown reason), so that might even give her an edge.Nella looks forward to the bubbles at the end! This might be her favorite part.

TWO. I bought a Cricut machine on super sale a while ago, and between having computer/software issues and just being intimidated by it, it took me a long time to actually use it. Well, I made my first project, and it was so much fun! Also, it was a lot easier than I thought it’d be. I put this Minnie Mouse on an old t-shirt of Kaelyn’s for practice.She was the happiest girl! And now I want to make all the things.

THREE. I didn’t make this camera onesie, but I’ve wanted one of these forever, so when my favorite kids’ clothing store (Carter’s) had a sale, I finally got one for Eve. Baby photographer!Everything about this just melts me.FOUR. When flower-print leggings were on sale… I just had to. It’s hard to find something they can all wear, so matching all four girls was extra fun. I love living in a haze of pink. (You should have seen all the crazy things I was doing to get these laughs out of them… Nella’s plush “Baby Beagle” was dancing on my head and making the funniest noises! Nella also insisted that her Tigey be in the photo!)

FIVE. There’s nothing like a little girl who regularly steals your boots.There was one morning where my little boot-loving girl came downstairs about 15 minutes before her sisters, so she and I got to have some quality time baking muffins together. It’s rare to have that precious time with only her, so I relished it. She put all the muffin cups in the pan, and I tried to teach her the colors as she did so.

five on friday (05/11)

Happy Friday!!!

ONE. I’ve been working on making the girls each a special crocheted stuffed animal, and this week, I finally finished Kaelyn’s puppy! She’s been so patiently waiting for it to be done, and her giant smile was more than worth the time it took to make it.She named her dog “Rainbow Flower Irwin”, and they now go everywhere together.I actually finished Kaya’s cat (based off of this pattern) back in February, whom she named “Flower Rose”. She’s been in Kaya’s top 3 favorite stuffed animals ever since!Yes, she’s wearing her cat in the Ergo carrier here…Happy girls, happy mama.Rainbow Flower was based off of this pattern here.Kaya’s has started to get fuzzy… and I can see by looking at these pictures that her head has changed shape a bit from all the time Kaya has spent playing with her. I’m still really proud of how these turned out for my first “amigurumi” projects.TWO. We had our very last Kangaroo Kids class before the summer break… but I think it might have been the best one ever, because for the very first time, Daddy got to come! He took the afternoon off of work, arrived before us, and hid in this donut-shaped mat. When he popped out, the girls were ecstatic! He went in the bounce house, down the giant inflatable slide, and basically made all their dreams come true. He really is the best Daddy.We actually got to attend two classes this week, as a make-up for another week’s missed class. Nella is all about this ball pit. She loves finding the ducks that are hidden inside!THREE. My “ultra nesting” continues, and now I’ve got all the girls in on it, too. Today, they washed windows and cleaned baseboards for me. Kaya and Kaelyn are getting old enough to actually do well at these sorts of jobs!Nella, on the other hand…She might be the cutest little window washer, but her technique could use some work. She grabbed the extremely soapy sponge, dipped it in the dog’s water bowl, dripped suds all across the freshly-mopped floor, and went to wipe the windows that Kaya had just finished cleaning. She definitely gets points for effort and resourcefulness!FOUR. Kaya and Kaelyn have been very into perler beads again, and this week, they made some new critters to add to their ever-growing collection. Kaya free-handed the owl just by looking at a picture, and then made the smiling “Cheshire cat”. Kaelyn’s puppy was based mostly on a “green and white” color scheme.FIVE. I say it every week now, but there’s really no place I’d rather be than out in the sunshine with these girls. If you need me, I’ll probably be out here for the rest of the summer. This is my happy place.

Linking up herehere, and here today!

life last week

This has been the least amount of blogging I’ve done in many months, and my guilty conscience automatically starts to apologize as soon as my fingers hit the keyboard again. But then I remember that my main reason for writing this blog is so my kids will have it when they’re grown, and I realize that I don’t have to be sorry. I think when they finally read this in 10 or 20 or 30 years, they’ll be glad that their mom was sometimes a little too busy to blog because she was playing outside with them, helping them with crafts, and putting together their birthday parties. Whenever there’s a lot to write about, there doesn’t seem to be enough time to actually blog about it, because we’re busy living it. And in a way, I’m okay with that.

We’ve been spending a lot of time outside and at the playground. These two love “rock climbing” together!Kaya is becoming a little more bold and has started practicing hanging from the monkey bars. She isn’t able to grab onto the next one and keep going yet, but I am proud of her for going out on a limb (a.k.a. monkey bar) and trying something new.
This little monkey is also trying to climb more… …while the littlest monkey isn’t monkeying at all. When you’re the third baby, you sometimes have to nap on the go! On a recent walk, a lady told me that I need more kids in my stroller. I told her that if there were any more, I might not be able to push it up the hill! Really though, I love having all these seats full (and this stroller is still one of the best things ever)!
If you were worried that the girls have just cardio at the playground as their only exercise, fear not- strength training happens via morning push-ups with Daddy!The girls worked on painting these suncatchers one afternoon. They are both pretty meticulous artists now, so they take their time, and I love seeing what they come up with at the end! They also made about a million perler-bead animals, so my iron lived on the kitchen counter for a few days so we could finish all of their creations ASAP. Waiting to melt those beads together inevitably leads to having them spill, which makes for some very sad little girls (and a crazy puppy who tries to eat any bead she discovers on the floor)! We went shopping for baking supplies for Kaelyn’s birthday cake, and Nella sat in the front seat of the shopping cart for the first time ever. As evidenced by her silly little grin, she loved it! She’s had a few more rides since last week, and she kicks her legs and smiles happily every time. Someone was excited to pick up her birthday balloons… … and someone else was excited to show off her cute little teeth! These are the days, and I’m glad I’m living them, even if I’m not writing about every detail.

five on friday: pizza, paint, and kisses

ONE. My dog obviously failed “Cuddling 101.”Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetTWO. We got pizza last weekend… and Kaya thought that all the sausage was for her (especially the pieces that were on Michael’s plate)!IMG_20140228_200717

THREE. Lately, she wants to eat all her meals on my lap (and since I still miss our cuddle time from nursing, I don’t mind at all. She also seems to eat a lot more food if I sit with her and help her take bites). She loved these pumpkin muffins!
Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

FOUR. Sometimes I feel like a “sub-par” mom because I don’t plan a lot of crafts or structured activities for Kaya to do. Well, this week, we painted, and it lasted all of maybe three minutes. She got paint on herself and cried in the first millisecond that we started, so maybe I don’t feel so guilty about not planning these sorts of things for her. I don’t think she’s quite at the age where she can enjoy it yet._MG_1507FIVE. There are no words to describe how adorable this is. Watch it, it’s worth it!

Linking up with Natasha, April, Christina, and Darci today!

a little birdy birthday | kaya’s first birthday party

I’m finally sharing Kaya’s birthday party from two weeks ago! We kept it pretty simple, but it was still adorable and I love the way it turned out. I really wanted to have a theme that meant something to us, and since Kaya’s nickname is “Baby Bird” (we probably call her “Birdy” 85% of the time, actually), I thought it’d be perfect to incorporate that into the party. I chose a pink and aqua color to go with the little birds and decorated/crafted accordingly._MG_9753 Look at all those presents! She is one very-loved little girl._MG_9772 This was my first fondant cake ever. Not perfect, but I’m actually quite impressed with how well I did. I just won’t tell you that the bottom layer of cake split into three pieces and I had to have help from both my mom and mom-in-law help get the fondant on top… but isn’t that baby bird precious?_MG_9777_MG_9775Chocolate with a chocolate-pudding filling. Mmmmmmm. Too bad Kaya doesn’t really care about cake._MG_9815 09212013photogrid2 I made her onesie myself with applique and fabric paint, inspired by this one.09212013photogrid1 (She didn’t get the horse for her birthday, but it’s one of her favorites and this is too cute to not include!)_MG_9749 Uncle Jeff and Auntie Lelia got her a drum, and she was quick to learn how to use it! She carries the drumsticks all around the house now._MG_9858 _MG_9863 _MG_9882Happy Birthday, Baby Bird. We love you!

my dog might be more popular than me

We went for a 6-mile run on Saturday, and six distinct sets of people said hello… to my dog. That’s more greetings than I probably get in a whole week while out exercising (although a cute, cuddly puppy is a little more inviting than a sweaty girl wearing her hair like she just took a ride through a clothes dryer…)

I’ve been thinking about Greek food for weeks now and we FINALLY went out for some on Saturday night. Mmmm gyros. Of course, Kitty had to come along.092913photogrid1 Lelia and I spent some time planning out all the details of our Halloween party. Halloween festiveness got the best of me, so I went out and bought burlap that very night to make a special craft (hopefully I’ll have it completed and on the blog soon). Check out those candy corns!IMG_20130929_201850

My baby has also realized that she can walk without holding on to furniture, walls, or my pants… so she made it all the way down the hallway yesterday while carrying Kitty and her music radio. She just keeps practicing since then, but I never seem to have the camera right at those exact moments. Mom fail.

And just because… a shameless selfie (with Michael’s computer in the background, of course). I love my best friend (and I love that he let me sleep in two days in a row. If there were an Ultimate Husband award, he’d win, hands down.)

kid tested, mom approved: mommy & me craft

When I saw that the topic for “Kid Tested, Mom Approved” today was a craft, I honestly had a little bit of a hard time coming up with something. I really wanted to give Kaya the chance to create something, but at 11 months old, it doesn’t seem like there’s a whole lot she can really “make”.

I thought about it for a few days and decided that we would finger paint. I whipped up some paint using this recipe, taped a piece of paper to the kitchen floor, and let her make a giant mess.fingerpaint3082013 I suggest you wear only a diaper junky clothes for this activity too. Just because you’re not the one painting doesn’t mean a messy little monster won’t grab all over you with her blue hands.fignerpaint1082013 Eventually she just started painting the floor…fingerpaint2082013 After all the blue paint dried (which really didn’t seem to take that long after I cleaned up the floor and Kaya had a bath), I mixed up orange paint and put some on both of our hands so that we could make “mommy and baby” fishies.

I know it’s not going to be in a museum anytime soon ever … but I think I’ll cherish this forever.mommymefishfingerpaintartlabel

chalk it up!

I have a recent obsession confession: chalkboard paint! I had a great idea to make this project for the kitchen, and I’m very pleased with the result! (and let it be known that I only burnt myself with the hot glue gun twice!)

I’m pretty curious to see what crazy cool ideas I can come up with to use the rest of this super special paint… but I’m not sure how many green chalkboards a person can have at her house without being considered a little “strange.”


three little pumpkins

Last night I went to the Relief Society “Make and Take” Halloween craft. I have a hard time resisting signing up for these sorts of things. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I always seem to forget what a slowpoke I am- I was one of the first girls to get started, and I was definitely the last one still sitting at the table after everyone else and finished and gone home!

But hey, my slowpoke-edness paid off… I ended up with some cute little candle holders!

We’ve got the dopey pumpkin, the one-toothed redneck, and then the classic normal.

Of course you need to see them in the dark!