five favorites (08/10)

Happy Saturday! I didn’t quite get this done yesterday, so here I am. We spent a big part of today cleaning, so it’s nice to pop on here for a bit of fun and share what we’ve been up to this week!

ONE. We got to go to our town’s summer festival last weekend. There were craft vendors of all sorts, with a plethora of homemade items for sale. I think this was the first year we didn’t buy a single thing, but the girls had the best time. They got free lollipops from the local sweets shop. Everyone chose “rainbow” flavor, of course.

The fire station gave out these free firefighter hats, and the girls got to go up in the fire engine to look around, too. It was so exciting for them!The girls have been wearing their hats just about every day since. They pretend to come to my house and check that my smoke detectors are working. I love watching their creativity.They also got to go on a bounce house/slide! This was the best part for them.

TWO. Michael has been working hard out in the yard this week, removing the old bushes, most of which were dead or at least half-dying. This is a massive work-in-progress, but I’m realizing that having a house basically means you’re always working on something. At least, that’s how it is for us.Kaelyn was a good little helper.Nella keeps finding these old tennis balls in the yard. We (and Scout) found quite a few the first year we lived here, so I figured we had uncovered them all. Nope! They are still showing up. Someone must have played a lot of fetch before we bought the house.

I guess we’ll have to figure out what we’re putting here instead!

THREE. Speaking of our yard, we’ve had a lot of wild visitors lately… This buck has been here a few times to eat apples off the tree. He has a deformed antler, so he’s been easy to identify. He was also at the playground one day when I was running! I used my telephoto lens to get these, which is something I don’t get to do very often, so it was a fun change.On another day, we had a mother and her two fawns come by! I had seen the mother before and could tell she was lactating… so I was so excited when she brought her babies with her on her next visit. I only had time to grab my phone to take these before they sprinted away (ahem, Scout, thank you for barking and scaring them)! FOUR. Apparently, I’ve just been having a lot of fun with nature photos this week. Our purple flowers are already starting to wilt and fall to the ground, which means fall is fast-approaching.The girls and I loved reviewing what we’ve learned about pollination by watching the bees drink nectar from each flower.FIVE. One of my very favorite things about having a bunch of little girls is putting them in matching clothes, and it’s even better when I get to match them, too! I was in love with these pink sparkly shoes ever since I bought them for the girls for Easter, and when my size went on clearance last week… I just had to get them. These little moments make life sweet. (Also, Nella’s bare baby legs are just way too cute!)

Happy weekend!

five favorites (06/16)

Happy Saturday! I’m here with our highlights from the week:

ONE. One of the girls’ favorite summertime “family night” activities is washing the car! I really think they just love anything that they can do in their swimsuits, but this is a win-win for everyone- happy kids, clean van! Everyone had a turn soaping it up and then using the hose to spray it off. Kaya liked running through the water while Kaelyn was spraying! Nella was just obsessed with playing with all the bubbles!It was a little overcast, so by the end of the activity, everyone was chilly. Kaelyn was excited to use her Olaf towel!TWO. It’s been a few very productive weeks of getting projects done around here. Michael has been painting, hanging new towel rods and toilet paper holders, and installing a new faucet in the kitchen.I just love those little seahorses in the girls’ bathroom! It’s hard to tell from the picture, but this minty green paint is so bright and happy, too. (Now hopefully no one smears toothpaste all over the wall… again!)THREE. While Daddy works on the house, all the girls go to Home Depot to get more things for him to work on the house. Ha! These little ladies and I decided to go out and check some things off our errands list last Saturday, and although it was a little exhausting getting them all in and out of the car several times, we really had fun and enjoyed being out of the house for a bit. (Yes, Nella is totally picking her nose. This is real life…)We also went to Target and looked at ALL the toys. Kaya and Kaelyn later said that was the best part of their day (of course)! We found some fox sippy cups on clearance, and since it seems like we never have enough cups (I have no idea how that’s possible, but it is), we ended up getting them. Nella has been so excited to drink from a straw!FOUR. I used to collect cool pencils and pens when I was a kid, and I still have some them stowed away in a drawer. Kaya found this very old Etch-A-Sketch pen this week, and was so excited to try it out. It’s fun to see the old childhood classics still holding entertainment value for the new generation.And yes, they were hanging out in the hammock all together. You didn’t think I’d skip a week of hammock photos, did you?Bookworm baby!Scout actually tries to climb in the hammock on her own just about every day. She seems to think she’s a person, which is usually pretty hilarious. No hammocks for puppies!

FIVE. Sometimes, when you’re the third kid, you need your own little space. Nella found hers in the (clean) laundry basket this week. Of course, she had to bring a baby doll in there with her!Happy weekend!

five favorites (02/07)

There’s nothing wrong with writing a Five Favorites post on a Wednesday, and still doing a Five on Friday in a couple days, right? I  have so many little moments from last week that I’m feeling grateful for and just had to write down.

ONE. I wanted to put a little thank you in here to everyone for their congratulations, love, and support on our pregnancy announcement for baby #4. It means so much to me that so many people love our family! To be honest, I was a little nervous to announce this time around, because once you get to four kids, it seems like people start to question your sanity a little. Don’t worry, we are probably crazy, but we love our kids. I can’t imagine life being any more fun that it is in this stage.

I thought it’d be funny to share a blooper photo, but I actually didn’t end up with many! This is as close as it gets- Nella looks a little grumpy (about not being the baby anymore?), and Kaya’s one is backwards. Ha!

TWO. The sweetest little moment happened first thing one morning last week. Nella saw her Daddy, immediately grabbed a book off the floor, and crawled up into his lap, waiting for him to read it to her.

THREE. Kaya got her first pair of running shoes! I have to say, I don’t know if she was more excited, or I was! These are Sauconys (just like the pair I use for shorter runs), and I got them for under $15, so definitely a win! She’s signed up for her first “kid race” (fun run) this spring, so she was definitely pumped to try them out.I also realized it’s been far too many miles since I replaced my main pair of shoes (my legs always start to let me know when it’s time), so some new Brooks came in the mail for me, too! Something about bright blue shoes gets me excited to hit the pavement.
FOUR. Confession: since Nella was born, I almost never go shopping with all three kids on my own. I usually send Michael to the grocery store, but there’s no way he wants to go to the craft store for me, so we made a stop there when we were in the neighborhood last week. I have such good girls, but it was still a little chaotic. See all that yarn in the basket? Yeah… I wasn’t buying any of it, but the girls sure wished I was, and they kept finding every “pretty color” and throwing it in the cart! They told me they needed yarn to make something for me, which was so sweet in theory.When you’re so tired and want to grab everything off the shelf (but your pigtails look cuter than ever)!

FIVE. The new favorite activity around here is helping Nella ride the rocking horse! She would do this all day long if she could. Google created a nice little GIF that made this activity look even wilder than it really was, but I love their smiles. And yeah, that’s pretty much what my living room always looks like by mid-morning… toys everywhere. It partly makes me crazy, but I also realize that the mess is evidence that some awesome, creative kids live here, and they’re happy.

five on friday (11/03)

Happy November! I had to stop myself from writing “10/03” up there in the title. It’s hard to believe that Halloween has come and gone, and we are now counting down to Thanksgiving! I really dislike feeling so behind on everything I want to write about on here, but here’s to hoping I can catch up before we really start the holiday season.

ONE. Yesterday I was helping one of the older girls with something, and then I turned around and saw THIS!

I know, I know, most would say it isn’t a big deal for a 12-month old to pull herself up and stand, but Nella has gone from only rolling to full-on crawling and putting weight on her legs (which she always resisted doing before) in just the past couple of weeks. She decided she has to hit every milestone at once, apparently. Next up, walking!

TWO. Fall is for baking homemade pumpkin muffins… and eating them in the messiest way possible, apparently!

We also made some cupcakes for the church Halloween party! Kaya and Kaelyn were amazed that they could sit and watch them bake through the door once I turned the oven light on. I remember doing the same thing as a little girl.

THREE. Uncle Karl and Kaitlyn gave Kaya a whiteboard/chalkboard easel for her birthday, and this is just a small sample of the many, many works of art she’s made on it. She drew a minion (“with color-changing eyes!”) special for me after I painted our pumpkin to look like a minion for Halloween. I was really impressed with her style and skill!She also drew a picture of us having spaghetti dinner:

Of course, everyone wanted a photo with the minion.

Kaelyn’s little people are starting to look very good, too!

FOUR. This is what it looks like to go to Food Lion with all three kids! Kaya and Kaelyn think those little carts are the best thing ever, and to be honest, sometimes I do go there just so they can push them around. They are my big little helpers!FIVE. You didn’t think I’d leave Kangaroo Kids out, did you? Nella has been participating a little more lately and absolutely loves bouncing around with her sisters.I just love seeing them have fun (and joining them on the slide any chance I get)!

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 (07/29)

It’s the final Friday of July… Seriously, where has summer gone?

ONE. We had our last day at the pool this past Friday! As it turns out, management leased our old apartment, and we didn’t find out until we tried to sign into the pool and weren’t on the VIP list, haha! It was a little bittersweet- we love the pool, but we’ll be happy to get a refund check for half of the month’s rent in the mail soon.

TWO. Michael came up with the idea to wash the car for family night on Monday. Any activity that you can do in your swimsuit is an automatic hit- these girls loved it! Kaya was a great helper and loved spraying the car… and herself… and Kaelyn’s face… and me… 🙂_MG_4167 Soapy hands!_MG_4177 Kaelyn mostly played with the water table while Daddy and Kaya worked!_MG_4176

She could not have been more excited when it was finally her turn to try the hose!

THREE. Kaelyn sported her very first pigtails this week! She was delighted when she looked in the mirror and saw how she looked, and has wanted to wear her hair this way every day since._MG_4196_MG_4192

FOUR. My girls have really developed a love for the library this summer, and this week, we brought Daddy along with us! He helped them build this T-Rex puzzle (only to discover that the middle piece was nowhere to be found)! I love these simple family outings.

FIVE. I took the kids with me to my doctor appointment this week, and they were on their best behavior. I’m really thankful (and amazed) that they are generally so quiet and well-mannered in public.

We finished my appointment pretty quickly, so we stopped at the dollar store for some preschool supplies on the way home. I thought maybe there would be a fun treat for the girls there, and we lucked out- we found some Webkinz stuffed animals for $1! I spoiled them and let them each pick two (they have no idea that there’s an online game, but they are good-quality plushes, so we all like them)! We even splurged on some Ring Pops, and I think I chauffeured the two happiest girls in the world home. Every once in a while, it’s fun to “spoil” them and just enjoy their happiness.
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Happy Friday!

Linking up here, here, and here today!

five on friday (07/08)

A couple of these things are from last week, but they’re too cute to just leave off the blog! Some weeks, it seems like I have way more than just five things to share on Friday, and others, it seems like nothing too interesting happened all week. So, I’m just balancing it all out today! 🙂

ONE. This little girl has fallen head over heels for her Daddy. She’ll cuddle him, with her whole body wrapped around his arm and her head on his shoulder, when she first wakes up in the morning, when he gets home from work, and just before going to bed again. I love how sweet and tender she is._MG_3568

TWO. Over the past month, I’ve gotten some good deals using Amazon’s “subscribe and save” option. Well, all those things didn’t ship until a much later date than I bought them, and then I also happened to order guinea pig food and bedding around the same time, so one day, we came home to a HUGE stack of boxes at our door! I was pretty impressed that the mail-lady could stack them so high. Too bad it was mostly boring toilet paper and other things that we actually needed. 😉

THREE. I let these crazy girls have ice cream after dinner one night this week, and you’d think it was the best day of their lives. They aren’t strangers to sweets, but they don’t get dessert often (on less than a weekly basis), so this really was a thrilling treat for them. They say that your kids will like eating whatever you ate during your pregnancy… so this really should be no surprise to anyone! 😉IMG_20160707_220914FOUR. We found this awesome Melissa and Doug puzzle at the thrift store this week for 99 cents! I think I get some kind of adrenaline rush from scoring a good deal, but the girls were equally excited about this find. Needless to say, we’ve heard a whole lot of elephants, penguins, and zebras in our house this week._MG_3582FIVE. We’ve had a TON of rain this week, so there hasn’t been a whole lot of playing outside for us, but this video is from all our fun last week. I love summertime and evenings outside with my family.

Happy weekend!

Linking up here!

weekend

The weather on Friday evening was perfectly cool, so we started our weekend off with some outdoor playtime and daddy-daughter snuggles in the hammock. Sometimes, you smile so big that you just can’t keep your eyes open…_MG_3034Of course, they had to do a silly pose for me, too.
_MG_3035 Saturday morning was the hottest we’ve seen of this season so far. I got in a 6.5-mile run, and Michael went out to work in the yard and also help a new family at church with moving. While he was out, Kaya pleaded with me to “do preschool”, so yes, we did some “math” on a Saturday. We played this game and she loved it!_MG_3043

On Saturday night, Michael was the pianist for a baptism, and then we had a family date to Red Robin. Kaya was so excited and kept exclaiming “family date! family date!” all while we were out. I’m so glad she loves spending time together.

We ran some errands at Walmart, Home Depot, and Target, and I picked up some paint chip samples to take home. I really wish we would have gotten some actual sample paint to test out on the walls… but it was already late and we still had a couple of stops to make, so hopefully we can take care of that one night this week.

Sunday morning came too early for all of us. In fact, I randomly woke up at 5:45 to find Michael still asleep next to me, when he was supposed to be ready to head to bishopric meetings at 6 am. Luckily, he’s quick to get ready, so he was still on time.We miraculously arrived at church about 5 minutes earlier than we usually do! I gave a talk in sacrament meeting on “the importance of a living prophet”. I was very nervous and basically just ended up reading from my notes, but I received some positive comments afterward, so it must not have been all that bad! 😉

Kaya drew this picture in her sunbeam class! I have been so impressed to see how her art has evolved from just circles and random scribbles into recognizable forms.06122016 We ended the weekend with lots of book-reading and even more snuggles. This little princess is becoming a real daddy’s girl._MG_3046

five on friday (06/03)

Happy Friday!!! It’s been a whirlwind of a week, with doctor appointments, photoshoots, and lots of quality family time. I’m hoping we get to relax a little this weekend, but we always have a pretty big to-do list, so we’ll see if that actually happens. 🙂

ONE. We kicked off the week in the best way possible- church, followed by naps! I think Michael uses the girls as his secret weapon for waking me up… because who could be upset about waking up to those precious little faces? They love to snuggle lately, and I’ll gladly take any chance to cuddle up with them that I can.TWO. We’ve had fantastic weather this week, and have played outside just about every day. Kaya was excited to introduce Daddy to the merry-go-round! I think this might be her  new favorite place.They love going through this tunnel, too!
IMG_20160603_102320IMG_20160603_101722THREE. This wouldn’t be a Five on Friday post without a cheesy video, right? Haha. This turned out really cute… and blowing bubbles is one of our favorite things to do (truthfully, I think I like it as much as the kids do)!

FOUR. Kaya helped me make some strawberry freezer jam this week! We had leftover strawberries, so what better thing to do than make a strawberry slushie? Both girls LOVED this drink (just pureed strawberries and crushed ice); it disappeared in no time!_MG_2778

FIVE. I did it… I bought my three (!) girls their first matching clothes! I saw these fruity-themed leggings on clearance at Target this week, and just couldn’t pass them up for next summer. I’m sure this is the first of many matching outfits to come. I cannot wait to see them all wearing these next year. 🙂

And now I’m craving all the fruit…

Happy weekend!

Linking up here!

five on friday: christmas edition

We’ve been doing a lot of little things to get ready for Christmas over these past few weeks… so I thought I’d combine them all into a nice, neat list for Friday. I can’t believe Christmas is only one week away now!

ONE. Kaya had her preschool Christmas party this week! She made so many fun things, including a snowman, a Santa ornament shaped from her hand, and rice krispies Christmas trees! She had such a fun time.

(Kaya’s is on the far right)

TWO. Kaya’s been doing several fun Christmas-themed crafts this month! My favorites were this Santa ornament and this paper-plate tree 🙂_MG_0348 _MG_0349

THREE. We had our ward Christmas party a few weekends ago… and I never wrote anything about it because I took about two photos from the whole thing. Kaya was SO excited that the table centerpiece was a jar of candy canes. She also was given the foil-covered cardboard star from the nativity play to take home… and her night was made.

FOUR. Kaya attended another free Lowe’s Build and Grow activity on Saturday, and made her very own holiday train! She’s getting really good at these building projects- Michael said she drove most of the nails in herself this time (with close supervision, of course)!

FIVE. It seems like we’ve spent a lot of time at the grocery store, stocking up on baking supplies for Christmas treats and ingredients for our holiday dinner. My little reindeer babies just love riding in the special car cart.

At Food Lion, Kaya even got to push her very own kid-sized cart for the first time. Of course, Kitty (or “Meowy”, as he’s known lately), had to ride in the cart, along with all our bags of chocolate chips. And yes, we really bought that many.

7 more days!