Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Last day of school suprise

Growing up as a teacher's kid the last day of school was basically a national holiday! I still feel that way! The past two years we have celebrated the last day of Mom's Day Out by going out for ice-cream. So, when I told the kiddos that Grandma's last day of school was Tuesday they asked if we were making her a treat! I have been eying these cookie cutters for awhile now and decided that this was a great excuse to buy them and make something special for Grandma! 

My pictures aren't the best but I dyed some of the dough yellow and left the rest white. I have some practice to do but I still think they turned out pretty cute!

 And as we all know- presentation is half the battle anyway! So, I thought this box with paper grass in it and a yellow flower on top just said, "summer"!

We are planning to head over to Mom's school today and deliver these to her! I think she already has some volunteers to help her eat them!

Did you all grow up with after school traditions or do you have any of your own that you have started with your kiddos?

Because I love it...

So, in the next year or so I am hoping to start a new blog. I am not sure what kind of blog... I am leaning towards mostly recipes and little DIY projects... we will see. But with that, I have been thinking a lot about the "why". I mean, I am not looking to create a blog in order to make money and I am really not that concerned about having a lot of readers... but those seem to me like the "good reasons" to start anything but a family blog. But, then it hit me recently- I love blogging. I love blogs. Blogging has become my creative outlet. I don't really like to journal and I don't really like scrapbooking anymore, but I really LOVE blogging. And I think that is as good a reason as any to do something in your free time.

A lot of people have asked me how I find the time to blog. It used to hurt my feelings. Because I think I felt like the underlying question was- shouldn't you be playing with your kids? cleaning your house? cooking dinner? instead of blogging? But, I still do all of those things. We all make time for what we enjoy doing. So, while some people are watching The Bachelor or scrapbooking or reading for pleasure, I am blogging! Because I enjoy it!

I will keep you updated when I am close to starting a new blog. As you can probably tell I have started doing more food and decorating posts than I used to and the main reason for that is that they are the most fun for me to do!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

First, I have to give a big shout out and thank you to all of the men and women who serve and have served our country. I do not take for granted the fact that I live in a free country and have the opportunity to worship Jesus freely and openly. I am forever grateful to those who have died so that my family and I can enjoy the life that we have. What an amazing blessing.

I hope you all had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. When I think Memorial Day I think: bar-b-ques! Is it bad that I immediately think food? Ha! I just wanted to share a few cute ideas that I found on Pinterest if you are looking for some summer foods to take to your next cook out or pool party! These were both delicious, easy, and fun.... the perfect combination!

First off is these Funfetti Blondies. How cute are they? Anything with white chocolate chips and sprinkles just shouts; "celebration time". And they are SO yummy!

 Here is the link to the recipe for these, http://www.beantownbaker.com/2011/05/funfetti-blondies.html
And how genius was this little idea? I used a little star cookie cutter to make star shaped watermelon pieces! Super festive and easy! And who doesn't love watermelon? I think you will be seeing these babies again on the 4th of July and possibly at a certain someone's first birthday soiree! 

This was my inspiration, http://pinterest.com/pin/30104549/
I don't know about you, but to me Memorial day says that "summer is here". From this day forward you will most likely find me playing outside with the kids or hanging by the pool! I love summer!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday Morning

Happy Sunday everyone! This is my favorite kind of Sunday... the kind where the hubs has Monday off!

Nick got home last night around 9:45 or so. I was so glad to see him! I didn't really get a chance to talk to him while he was away so it was so good to see him and hear all about what he and the team did in Joplin. It sounds like they really had an opportunity to help and I am so glad he went.

When I first met Nick back in college he seemed like a super nice guy. I asked my campus minister, Christy, about him. She told me that he was the nicest guy. She told me that he would visit the nursing home once a week to visit with the people there and that he had a lady there that really loved him. The lady, Mary, told Nick that she really loved oranges so Nick brought her some. (Mary actually ended up coming to our wedding! She really loved Nick so much!) Now, who doesn't want to get to know a guy like that better? Nick really has an amazing heart for people and it is something that made me fall in love with him when we first met and that still inspires me to this day.

Okay... enough gushing!

Nick and the kiddos actually just left for church. We were all ready to go together but Jack was just in a funk this morning and we couldn't get him settled down. I don't know if he is teething or not feeling well or what. So, I put him down for a nap (where he is sleeping peacefully!) and Nick took the older kids to church. I think I am going to put a Mars Hill sermon podcast on here in a minute and enjoy the morning worshipping at home! I love going to church but am glad Nick was able to take the kids and am thankful for a sweet little baby even if he changes my plans sometimes!

I am hoping to do my Sunday Letters later this afternoon but I make no promises! Happy Sunday everyone!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Friday Bullet Points

  • Nick arrived safely in the Joplin area last night. I haven't heard from him today so I am not sure what he is up to but I am still just praying that Jesus will be made known and the love of Christ will show through whatever they are doing.
  • My friend Heather invited us over for dinner last night which was awesome because it totally filled up our hardest part of the day around here! I am so thankful!
  • We are going to a birthday party this evening for Max's buddy, Ben! I can't believe Ben is 5 years old... I don't like this because it means that Max will be 5 years old soon too and that just sounds too old.
  • I went to step class this morning at the gym which is one of my favorite classes. I feel like I get such a good workout and it is super fun. One of the childcare workers came and got me a little early because Jack was crying so I didn't get a full workout in but I think I just missed the cool down.
  • Tomorrow we are going to a bar-b-que at my parent's house. I am looking forward to relaxing and hanging out with my family! Although, it will be weird not having Nick there! 
  • I bought Imo's cheese and salad dressing at the store recently so I am planning on having an Imo's salad for lunch so I am very excited about that! They have the yummiest salads there! 
  • I missed Nick last night but I got to sleep in the middle of the bed which was fabulous! The last time I got to sleep in the middle of the bed by myself Nick was sick but that night I ended up waking up at midnight and being in labor and had to go to the hospital and have a baby! Ha!
  • My daughter carries around chapstick like most kids carry around a security blanket or stuffed animal... she calls it her make-up and is never without it.
  • I have been using The Message during my quiet times in the morning and have been so encouraged. I especially love reading through the Psalms. This morning I read Psalm 136. I love how it starts out, "Thank God! He deserves your thanks. His love never quits. Thank the God of all gods, His love never quits. Thank the Lord of all lords. His love never quits." Such an amazing reminder that no matter where we are, what is happening, what we are doing... facing all the uncertainty that we must face in this life one thing is constant: His love never quits! Can I get a hallelujah? :)
  • I think my herbs that I planted are doing pretty well! I love looking at them above my sink everyday!
  • So.... what's new with you guys? :)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Friends and tornados

Man! I am ready for tornado season to go away! I am so saddened by all of the devastation that has been caused by tornados all around our part of the country. We had some pretty intense storms yesterday but thankfully no tornados where we are. We did spend some time in our basement though.

Our hilight of yesterday was getting to spend some time with our amazing friends who are now living North Africa. We hadn't seen them in almost two years and it was SO wonderful to catch up. Because of the storms they came later than we planned so they left their sweet little girl with family and just came over with their newest addition, Josiah. He is 5 months old and has the sweetest red hair! Jack and Josiah hit it off right away! I think they could be good friends!


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Getting to spend the evening with them was such a huge blessing to both Nick and I! We love Andrew and Christy so much and are so thankful for their friendship. It is so special to spend time with people who you feel like no time has passed at all when you get back together. Unfortunatly, I didn't get any pictures of the grown-ups! :( But, trust me, we looked happy!

Today is a rainy and gray day. I am really trying to be in a good mood but this weather is not helping! Nick is leaving after work today to go with our church to volunteer in Joplin. For some reason I am feeling a little anxious about him going. I think it is just that I have never been home alone overnight a) since living in this house and b) with three kids. I know! I am a total spoiled whimp!! Nick doesn't travel for work at all and so it has just never come up!!

But, I am so glad Nick is going on this trip. Nick really has the gift of service. He is awesome at jumping in, doing the dirty work, and doing what needs to be done. And he does it joyfully. He is an awesome example of servanthood to me and our kids so I am glad he is getting this oportunity. Please pray for Nick and the team from Calvary Church as they head to Joplin this afternoon. May God be glorified during this tragic time in Joplin.

I guess I had better get to my day! Pray for me- I will be home alone with three kids until Saturday night!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Sunday Letters

Sunday Letters late again! But, what is important is remembering what was going on with my kiddos!

Dear Max,

I feel like we are taking one step forward and two steps back sometimes when it comes to your behavior. You are just a little man who knows what you want! And I am just a mom who has never had a four year old or a boy before! But, luckily for you, you are stinkin' adorable so I know we will get there!

Yesterday was your last day of Mom's Day Out. You really enjoyed it this year but you are excited to go to preschool next year. Actually, you keep telling me you want to go to kindergarten so it could be a long year waiting! I think that when you do start kindergarten you will be READY!

This week you have been doing a lot of drawing and have also been showing more interest in writing letters and numbers. It is so neat to see you take an interest in these things all on your own.

Dear Sophie,

You are growing up so fast! You have been asserting your independence more these days. You let us know what you think about everything! You especially let us know about the things that you don't like.

You had a great year at Mom's Day Out. I think your teachers really got to see you come out of your shell. You are not super talkative around people you don't know well but I think by the end you were talking your teacher's ears off! They loved seeing your personality come out!

Dear Jack,

You gave me quite a scare yesterday when I realized you had a temperature of 103.3 under your arm! Luckily it went down right away with Motrin. I am sure it is just some little virus but I want you to be better!

You have started cruising around the furniture which is adorable and hard to believe all at the same time. Your birthday really is just around the corner! You also have started "chatting" a lot. It was cute to hear you chatter to your Grandma and Daddy yesterday!

Dear Nick,

You know the drill... I love you, you rock. :)

Weekend Recap

We managed to have ourselves a very fun weekend! We spent Friday night with friends. So much fun! Then we had a date on Saturday during the day (Grandparents rock! as do aunts and cousins who pop in to help babysit as well!). Then we went to Saturday night church. At this point in life that has been working really well for us because it doesn't interfere with anyone's morning nap and then we have Sunday wide open! Like this Sunday we went to the ZOO! Our first trip of the year! (along with everyone else in St. Louis!) But we still had fun! Here are some pics from our little adventure...
Ready for action

Me and my kiddos ready to see the zoo

Max is our resident animal lover so he led the way

The elephants are always fun to see

Getting an up close view of the elephants cooling off

My little flamingos checking out the flamingos

Jack and Daddy waiting in line for the train

Sophie and Daddy on the train (FYI- Sophie now really doesn't like the train! She keeps reminding me)

Me and my favorite baby on his first train ride!

Mommy and the boys ready to ride the train

We also got to do a few fun projects this weekend. Nick worked on my laundry room shelves. They are now assembled and painted and are now just waiting to go up. I can't wait to post pictures. I originally was going to put some cabinets over my washer and dryer but after looking for some online laundry room inspiration I realized open shelving seemed much prettier and bonus, cheaper! So, we went that route! Plus, my handy hubby did all the handy work himself! Anyway, more on that later!

I also did this little DIY project! I wanted to grow some herbs and saw this cute idea floating around on the interwebs. I used chalkboard paint to paint these pots and then white paint for the bottoms. I think they turned out super cute!

(sorry for the terrible lighting in this pic!)

I am very happy with how our weekend turned out. I just love weekends like this one that were a good mix of relaxation and productivity!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Last day of Mom's Day Out

Today was the kiddos last day of Mom's Day Out. Totally a bittersweet day! They love going to "school" and had a wonderful year with wonderful teachers. And I have loved having the day to run errands and spend one on one time with Jack. But, it will be nice to have a more flexible schedule and no school means summer is here! Woo hoo! Here are the kiddos on their last day of school!

And oh my goodness check this out! What a difference a year can make. Here is them on the first day of MDO compared to the last! (sorry the pictures are reversed... kind of looses some of it's dramatic effect)
But, don't they look so much older in the first picture? They look like little babies in the one from the beginning of the year!

Friday, May 20, 2011

It's Friday, Friday, Gotta get down on Friday

Everybody's lookin' forward to the weekend!

Thank you Rebecca Black for the intro to this blog post. Have you all heard that song? It NEVER gets out of your head! Here... my gift to you this Friday...

Don't say I never gave you anything!

Anyhoo! Just wanted to pop in and share a few pics of our cute little R's!

I can't begin to tell you how much I love having Max in my life

the sweetest baby

Seriously! So much joy! Never a dull moment!

Jack's newest hobby that takes up most of his waking hours: getting into his siblings toys!

I have no words to explain this... although you might be interested to know that it was also raining outside when he insisted on going out in this

Sophie and her "kids". That is what she calls her toys. Before I took this photo she told me, "I am just sitting here talking to my kids". Love that girl!

So, I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend! We are getting to hang out with some friends tonight and then the hubs and I have a HOT DATE tomorrow afternoon! My parents are the best (true story) and said they would watch the kiddies tomorrow and we are stoked! There is nothing better than getting some alone time with my man knowing that my kids are having way more fun than they would be having if they were home with their parents! Because everyone knows that grandparents are WAY more fun than parents!

Have a great weekend everyone! Enjoy PARTYIN' PARTYIN' (YEAH) :) 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


I have been on a bell pepper kick lately! I have been putting them in everything! They are so delicious and they make me feel like maybe summer is really going to be here soon!

I love all of the fresh produce that comes with summer! I think I could go weeks without ever turning on the oven in the summer and just making a salad filled with every veggie I can get my hands on and throwing something on the grill! Not to mention... sitting on the deck with a glass of wine watching the hubs do all of the cooking for me is one of the best ways to spend an evening ;-)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Summer Shelves

I have a set of shelves in my kitchen that I love to decorate seasonally. I got the idea from Shelly at House of Smith's (she has about a million great ideas). I put them up (haha... that was "I" as in the hubs!) and have decorated them for Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day and Easter. There isn't really a good "decorating" holiday right now so I decided to just go off of a neat print I got from Tar-jay and go with a summery feel... maybe in hopes of making summer come quicker!

The fork, knife, and spoon print that stared it all

I had to take my "R" off of the wall to add it to the display!

I love these blue fruit bowls from Kohls

I might have a thing for monograms... we are looking into it

I LOVE canning jars

I also got to bring out a few of my red dishes I got for our wedding from Pier 1

It works!... Until I get bored again!
I am pretty happy with how it turned out! Although sadly... I did break my white glass chicken in the rearranging process... there were only a few tears. I like the bold colors of this arrangement. Plus, I will easily be able to transition to 4th of July by just adding a few things! I think I might need to bring my red Kitchen Aid mixer and red toaster and let my kitchen be a little funky for awhile! (Do people say funky?)