Friday, March 30, 2012

Confession Friday 3-30!

Gracie was double fistin' it. :)

Eric already posted this on Facebook, but it cracks me up. Our girls LOVE corn. Grace decided she need both hers and mine to satisfy her appetite. :)

I confess that eating peaches straight from a can is probably really unsanitary, but oddly satisfying in a redneck sort of way.

I confess that there is no need for me to buy capris when a pair of rolled up blue jeans works just as well. How many times am I allowed to use "redneck" in one post?

I confess that my kids have been downright naughty lately, and I am at a loss for what to do. I'm seriously having one those "I'm failing as a parent" moments over here. Between Gracie's fits and Evie's boundary testing I'm about to lose my ever-loving mind.

I confess that we've been able to take a few of our really long walks this week, and my legs and calves are SORE. From WALKING. This mama needs to get in shape!

I confess that some of my friends were sharing stories about when they and their significant others said "I love you" for the first time, and I couldn't remember when Eric and I did. Eric can't remember, either. Haha. Whoops! Together for 10 years in a few days.... :)

Don't ever make this mistake, friends....


I confess that leaving nail polish within a toddler's reach is NOT a good idea. In case you didn't know.

I confess that buying ahead for your children's clothing can bite you in the butt. Gracie is growing like a weed! I've got super cute things with tags on them for summer that the kid will never wear.

I confess that Evelyn and I are currently playing indoor baseball with an ear plug and a fly swatter. Gotta keep them entertained somehow. :)

I confess that I still have nothing for Easter. I don't want to talk about it.

I confess that everyone I know is chopping their hair off, and I've been trying to resist...but it's getting harder. I have less than a week to make up my mind.

I confess that my dad mentioned that if he can sell his boat he would use the money to put in a swimming pool - how generous! I am gladly accepting any prayers that a swift sale is in his near future. :D


Alright, so it's already been one of those days. I've only had to start and stop this post a bajillion times this morning. And I'm pretty sure someone just spilled a box of cheerios on the kitchen floor. So I'm just going to go ahead and stop trying now. :) Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Is it Thursday Already?

April Fool's Day is just around the corner. How are you going to show the ones you love that you care? :)

By filling a their room or office with balloons? Because that's hilarious. Just saran wrap halfway up the doorway and start filling. Best harmless prank ever.

By forking their lawn? In my opinion, forking is the new TP'ing.

Or a classic...

The plastic covered toilet seat? My mother did this to me as a child, and I was never the same.

Hey all. We have a wonderfully busy afternoon planned today, so I can't spend a lot of time blogging this morning. Those dishes can't do themselves in there...unfortunately. I thought I'd keep in on the quick and easy by answering a few questions I was asked to answer from fellow blogger, Melissa. :)

Without further ado....


1.  What is your favorite childhood memory?

It may not be just one instance, but my favorite memories of childhood have to be family Christmas parties, hands down. Both sides of my family did it up big when I was little. Lots of people, lots of food, lots of fun. I loved getting to see cousins that I didn't see every day, and feeling the comfort of friends and family all around. 

2.  What time do you go to bed at night?

I am a night owl by trade. Depending on the day I'll go to bed anywhere from 10:00pm (rare) to about 2:00am.

3.  How often do you get your hair cut?

I get my hair cut about four times a year. I grow it out for a few years and then chop it all off and start over. I have a hair appointment next week, and I'm trying to decide what to do with it....

4. Paper or Plastic? 

Paper. We shop at Aldi, haha.

5.  What couldn't you live without?

This question is actually really hard depending on which way you go with it. Literally, I couldn't go without food and water. On mushy levels, I couldn't live without my family. And I definitely wouldn't want to live without the internet. 

6.  Are you craftsy? 

I love a good craft. If I can dream it, I'll attempt it. 

7.  Where is your favorite place?

My favorite place is home. I love to take trips, but I like coming back to home base.

8.  What is your favorite color?

Pink.

9.  Are you left or right handed?

I'm a rightie.

10.  What is your favorite blog to read?

This changes often. Usually it's Enjoying the Small Things or Thrifty Decor Chic, depending on my mood.

11. Why is it your favorite?

Kelle has a way with words, and if I'm feeling sentimental, she never disappoints. I get this girl on eery levels. Sarah writes a straightforward decorating blog, but I just love her and she has great ideas. My first home is going to be full of DIY wainscoting thanks to that woman, haha.

And my crazy day officially starts - now!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Talking Some Cents

Tuesdays are now affectionally known in my world as "crazy Tuesdays" which of course always follow the long "daddy-less Mondays" to round out what is a very hectic beginning of every single week. (In other words, our family has over-scheduled itself and we're about to go insane over here.) Five more weeks and Eric's night class is over. We can do this....

Yesterday was the craziest Tuesday of them all. I am emotionally spent after an intense morning of prayer, followed by a bit of worry, followed by a bit of "what the heck are you worried about, isn't that why you are praying in the first place?" followed by even more prayer. I didn't want to say much yesterday, because I wasn't sure what I was allowed to say...if that makes sense...but our friend Tyler was in court all morning for the charges against him from the accident he was in last year. I won't get into all the deets, but it was a nail-biter let me tell you. 

Praise God that he jury decided that our Uncle Ty Ty was NOT Guilty. Wahoo!! The truth shall set you FREE, people. Don't ever forget it. :) 

We squeezed in a little victory dinner at a snazzy local restaurant...you may have heard of it...it's called Pizza Hut. :) And then we caravanned over to our Financial Peace class for the rest of the evening. Yes, even after a full day in court Tyler decided he didn't want to miss an FPU lesson. Speaking of....


Lesson Four: Dumping Debt

Last night's lesson was super important, because it's probably what Dave Ramsey is most well known for - getting rid of debt. It's the reason why most people decide to take FPU in the first place, and holy moly, it's so full of information I cannot even begin to nail down all of the knowledge in just a few short paragraphs. (I think I say this every time.) This is also the longest of all of the lessons, clocking in at one hour and forty minutes of non-stop myth-debunking and encouragement and strategies to get rid of debt once and for all.

Dave begins the lesson explaining that this one is so hard to teach, because first he has to un-teach what the modern world has indoctrinated it's people to believe: that you cannot possibly live without debt, that it's actually a GOOD thing, and that you can use it to your advantage. He reminds his audience that living with debt is a very new concept, and that just a few generations ago it was looked at as "sinful" and "folly" to purchase things without being able to afford them. In fact, such notable names as Henry Ford and J.C Penny REFUSED to allow financing for their products, and their respective businesses were so ingrained with this thinking that you couldn't charge at Penny's or finance a Ford until long after their founders were dead and gone. The same could be said for other businesses, too...like Sears, for example, which today makes more money from its credit card interest than it does from selling products. Sheesh! 

Now I'm not here to convince anyone that they should cut up their credit cards...Dave will tell you to if you take his classes, but I don't have the time to explain just why and how you lose every time you charge something...even if you pay the full amount on your balance at the end of the month. I can't take the time to explain just why when you use cash, it HURTS to see that money go, and so right off the top you save 12-18% when you use cash by just avoiding too much impulse spending. 

While it seems that this lesson is a big downer, the truth is Dave spends just as much time explaining why you want that debt gone, and how much more FUN life is when you get to keep your own money - imagine that! 80% of millionaires today are FIRST GENERATION millionaires. And what that means is that they started with nothing, and they built their way up in life. And what advice do those people give? What is the one thing nearly all of them have in common? They don't, and never did, use debt as a way of life. No credit cards, no car payments, no 90 days same as cash. Period. Dave jokes that you can keep taking advice from "your broke brother in law" about how to win with money, or you listen to those who have already won. It's up to you. :)

This is the lesson that fires people up. It makes some people angry. Dave says that's part of his job. :) Because until you get a fire in your belly, until you become INTENSE about really wanting to make a change, it probably isn't going to happen. In my personal experience, he is dead on.

***


I'm so behind on this challenge! 

While I don't take stock in horoscopes myself, my quick answer to this one would be VIRGO, because that's my sign. Haha. 

But this does lead into a little story that I just heard last week from a fellow mom who took an astronomy class once. I'm sure as an astronomy professor you can't get out of teaching a college course on the stars without at least addressing the "astrological signs" found among the constellations. It's probably one of the few things students know anything about before they take the class, after all.

So one day the professor came into class and went around to each student asking them for their birthdays. As they would tell her the date, she would shuffle through her papers and then hand each of them a sheet before moving on. Written on each piece of paper was a horoscope of sorts, describing what that person's personality profile should be based on which sign they were born under.

After letting her students read for a few minutes, the professor asked her students to raise their hands if their personality profile matched their true personality. Nearly every single student rose their hands. And then she told them to switch papers with the person sitting next to them. The students began to laugh as they realized that everyone's papers said the same exact thing. Oh, the power of suggestion!

In one little exercise the professor was able to explain to her students that astronomy and astrology are two very different things; that astrology is a pseudoscience and is meant only for fun. I'm sure she saved herself a lot of time and questions for the rest of the semester! :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Please Pray

Hey friends! The girls and I are spending this morning in hardcore prayer for a friend. I know you'll understand why there's no post today. If you are a friend of Tyler Donjon he needs to be BATHED in prayer this morning. Please remember him as you go about your morning. I may hop back on later to say "hey!" on your blogs. Praising God for what he's already done in Tyler's life, and what he has yet to do....

"Ask, and it will be given to you seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." Matthew 7:7
"And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith." Matthew 21:22
"Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours." Mark 11:24

And while we're at it, if you have any prayer requests today, let me know! The girls and I would be happy to lift you up, too.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Season of Birthdays


Seriously, I know the statics say that August is the hottest month of the year for birthdays (no pun intended), but in all of my days I have known more folks with March birthdays than any other. Maybe it's just my family...I dunno. But we've been birthday-ing it up like crazy around here, and this weekend we had two very special people to celebrate. :)

Both my Grandma Pat (my mom's mom) and my Great Uncle Charlie celebrated into their 70's this week, and we made sure to spend some time with both of these very special people in my life.

My uncle Charlie was more like a grandfather to me when I was growing up, and his wife, my aunt Brenda, was very much like a grandma. I may have spent more time at their house when I was little than I did at my own. Uncle Charlie was truly my first best friend. I adored him. He would push me for hours outside in the tree swing. We invented our own little game called "Charlie Chase" where he would chase me around the cars in the driveway, and I thought it was hilarious. Uncle Charlie would hide behind the car tires so that I couldn't see where he was by looking underneath...and then he would round the corner and send me into fits of giggles.

And he spoiled me, terribly. Anything I asked for - it was mine. Usually my request was to go to a local gas station for gum. I was a big fan of Bubblicious, and Uncle Charlie was a first class enabler. :)

We snapped a  phone picture of Charlie this weekend. :)

For the past few years Charlie has been slipping away with Alzheimer's, finally reaching the point that he had to be put in the care of a nursing home. On Saturday we were able to visit with Charlie for his birthday in a small private room with a few friends and family members. I'm not 100% certain that Charlie knows exactly who I am anymore, and I'm even more certain that he isn't sure who my children are. But I do know one thing: he still has a heart for kiddos. The girls kept trying to escape from our little party and run the halls, and Charlie's first concern was to try to go after them and make sure they were okay. :)

My Grandma Pat is also a very important figure in my life, and I owe more to her than I probably even know. As you all know, my faith is very important to me, and my grandma was the one who would pick me up for church on Sunday mornings and make sure I was going to Sunday School when I was a wee little thing. Through her example eventually my entire family started going to church, and well...the rest is history.


I don't have any pictures of Grandma on this computer...the closest thing I could find was my sister and me at my grandma's house, haha.

My grandma was best known for her loud cackling laugh which could be heard over everyone else's in the room. :) My childhood Christmas Eve memories revolve around running around her house, the smell of home made pizzas bubbling away in the oven, and hearing that laugh ring out in the kitchen while the cousins and I built bubble tents and played hide-and-seek. Sigh...I had a really good childhood, and her home was the backdrop for so many great memories.

On Sunday we were able to stop by her now-quiet house and visit with her and my grandpa. There aren't so many little feet constantly running around, but not much else has changed over the years. Going to grandma's is sort of like a time-warp. :) I was really happy to be able to sit and chat for a while...that is until Evie informed us that she "had to go home," which is her way of saying she has to use the potty, haha. She wanted to use her own potty seat, and by the look on her face I knew we had to book it out of there. Poor kid!

I have to admit that sometimes I get wrapped up in taking care of my own kids and my own life that I forget to make the time to appreciate those who invested so much into me. Family is super important, and weekends like these are great reminders to stop and make sure to let them know how much they are loved and appreciated.

Cousins! Alisa is the tall one, and I'm on the right. :)

Today I am remembering another relative who would be celebrating a birthday. Unfortunately, I have lost a lot of close family members over the years, and I had to deal with the idea of loss starting from a very young age. My cousin Alisa lost her battle with cancer when she was just 13 years old, and I was only eight. Cousins were my very best friends and my very favorite playmates when I was younger. We were all so close. If my calculations are correct, Alisa would be 32 today, which is crazy to think about! :) She was a kind and beautiful spirit who loved to dance and have fun. Her passing marked a distinct change in the family. Holidays and get togethers aren't the same when you feel like you're missing a very important person who always made them so much fun.

Sorry, didn't mean to shift gears on ya. :) Point is - lots of birthdays! And birthdays are happy days meant to be celebrated, so wahoo!

There is still at least one more birthday in my family this month - my dad's! I'm telling you, March is IT for birthdays. This week promises to be a great one, and next week, well...it's going to be even better. :) Hope you had a great weekend, and if you happen to have a March birthday join the club and Happy Birthday to you! :)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Confession Friday 3-23!

I confess that Evie broke the handle off of my shark sweeper, and instead of sucking it up and lugging out the big vacuum cleaner every day, I just push the bottom part around the living room with my foot:

Eric ordered new parts for me. PTL, I was about to lose my mind. :)

I confess that I need to get some truly heinous looking friends to boost my self esteem. All the girls I know are too cute!

I confess that I can't get on Facebook anymore without wanting to whack someone upside the head. I feel like this is becoming a recurring confession.

I confess that I am guilty of some of my own pet peeves. It's okay if I do it, but nobody else is allowed. :)


***

On Wednesday night Evelyn came up to me and proudly said, "I made a stinky stocking for you, mama - all by myself!"

"A stinky stocking?" I asked.

She presented me with one of Eric's dirty socks which was stuffed full of baby carrots and celery sticks. Crazy kid!

Okay, moving on....

***

I confess that I will never ever ever...despite what my husband says is possible...be a morning person. Ever.

I confess that my children are convinced that tables are for climbing on. I have no idea where this idea came from, but it's really, really annoying. Especially in public. 

I confess that after being sick for a week I am officially addicted to Sprite. And I will chug that nectar straight from the 2-liter.

I confess that I'm really looking forward to lunch today, because we're having this stuff:



Nothing so good ever came out of a microwave. 
The girls and I could eat truckloads of this stuff.

I confess that I'm genuinely excited about Rapunzel and Eugene's wedding tonight on the Disney Channel. Baha. Love me some Tangled. If you're a fan, check out Tangled Ever After. (The Princess and the Frog comes on right before it. It's going to be a good Friday night.) <- I'm a crazy gal.

I confess that I haven't even begun shopping for Easter. I am so behind this year. I don't even have dresses for the girls - eek!

I confess that I keep seeing people dropping like flies with whatever pukey sickness is going around, and they are all hoping it's only a 24 hour thing. I've got news...it's not. And I don't have the heart to tell them.

And finally, I confess that I couldn't for the life of me think of one more thing to confess, so I stopped to read everyone else's blogs before wrapping this one up. And now I'm done. Ah....

_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_

It's FRIDAY! And it's SPRING! And it doesn't feel like Winter masquerading as Spring. Which pretty much means life is awesome right now, and I hope you all have a fun weekend. Now that we're venturing out of hibernating more, maybe I'll run into one of you...it could happen! :)


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tea for Two!

Gracie took a long nap yesterday afternoon, and Evelyn was just itching to get outside. We obviously couldn't go very far without little sister in tow, so I opened up the back patio door and Evie got a real treat. :)


Being the oldest in my family growing up, I know exactly what it's like to not being able to play with all of your toys whenever you want. Younger siblings sometimes have one thing in mind: destroy, destroy, destroy. Haha. Our dear friend Helen gave the girls a cute little tea set last Fall, mostly for the basket that it came in, but of course Evelyn fell in love with all of the tiny cups and saucers inside. Unfortunately, Grace's favorite game was chucking those porcelain peices across the room, so the poor set had to be shelved.

I thought yesterday was the perfect time to let Evie get the tea set out and play while Grace snoozed peacefully away. And oh my...I nearly cried watching her play.


Her chubby little fingers fumbled with the teeny tiny peices. 




Evelyn decided that her teapot held lemonade instead of tea. :)


It was so peaceful and quiet outside. Evie was so content. I'm not sure who had more fun. :) Sometimes it's wonderful to spend one-on-one time with just one of your babies. They are just so different when they are on their own. Lately Evie and I have gotten a really close bond, and I'm soaking in every single moment of it. Meanwhile, Grace is becoming a real daddy's girl. It's super cute to watch our daughters go through different stages. None of them last for long, so we just go with it as they come. I'm pretty sure Eric is loving all of the extra Gracie cuddle time he's been getting lately, too.

Life is good.


Lesson Three: Cash Flow Planning

Last night was the first in a series of very practical lessons in FPU: Cash Flow Planning. Also known as...the dreaded BUDGET lesson. Dun dun dun...haha.

Dave spends a lot of time in the first part of this lesson dispelling the myths of what a budget is and what it isn't. Many people, especially those who have never written down their personal finances "on paper, on purpose" dread making a budget. They see it as a straight jacket on their personal life, and honestly, just a big pain in the rear. But what he wants his audience to get is that when you do a budget and really stick to it, it's not restricting AT ALL. In fact, it's freeing. Telling your money where to go instead of watching your money disappear will give you a sense of control, and you'll probably find you have more to work with than you thought when money isn't flying out the window every week.

What I LOVE about FPU are the discussions after we watch the lesson every Tuesday night. It's one thing for Dave to tell you something, and it's another to hear your friends talk about how it's so TRUE, and how it worked for them. After learning the nuts and bolts of making a "zero-based budget" we were able to talk about our fears and concerns about making our budgets, as well as our past successes. There is no greater encouragement then having folks who have been there, done that tell you to just DO IT, because you won't regret it. 

The conversations and stories shared in our discussions are the heart and soul of the entire FPU program, which is why I encourage anyone who can to find a class near them and start as soon as possible. Anyone can pick up one Dave's books and read it on their own, but it's so much more effective to dig through the muck with other people in the same boat as you, helping, encouraging, and holding each other accountable every step of the way. 

***

Hope you guys are having a great day and a great week! I'm not sure what our afternoon will hold, but if the weather stays nice I know one thing: it's gonna be good! :)


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Adventures in Potty Training

Dear Eric,

I love you, but...dude. Last night you slept diagonally. I slept in a triangle of space, and I am not a triangle. I tried shaking you, waking you, and moving you, but my puny muscles were powerless against your girth. I did learn a couple of things last night that are probably useful to know.

1.) If you ever pass out on train tracks we're up a creek. I probably couldn't even drag your dead man-weight.
2.) Love knows no bounds. Instead of wanting to spit in your morning coffee, I giggled thinking about how hilarious you would find this today.

So please, if you can help it, don't ever pass out on train tracks. Sleep straight. And I love you.

Me.

***



We're going to talk a lot about poop today. So fair warning. :)

Yesterday was wonderful, I cannot even tell you. I felt relatively normal, we had a bbq dinner with my parents...I actually got to go outside and enjoy the weather. I'm so thankful for my parents on Monday nights! If there is one thing I will always remember from home, it's bbq night. My parents don't know how to do just a little bit of anything when it comes to the grill. There's a ton of meat, and a million sides, and it's all de-lish-us.

Since I still wasn't back to 100% I didn't feel like lugging the camera around and taking pictures yesterday, so instead I'm going to completely shift gears and update this little blog on Evelyn's potty training progress. I haven't written much about this childhood adventure, which is a crying shame. One of the reasons I write here at all is so that I can chronicle the lives of my babies and have something to look back on one day. How could I leave out such an important toddler milestone? So here it goes.

Evelyn is a champion pooper. I'm just going to put that out there. I haven't changed a poopy Evie diaper in MONTHS. Hallelujah! She has done her fair share of tinkling as well, but heaven forbid if she has to have a messy diaper - can't say that I blame her. And this is the reason why we ditched our normal potty chair a long time ago for this thing:


Because poop and plastic pots are not fun.

Even when we're out and about she'll stop whatever she's doing to use the bathroom. Last week at my parents house Evelyn suddenly said, "Um, I want to go home." I have never heard her utter such words before. So I asked her why she wanted to leave. And that's when she said, "I have to go use my big girl potty!" My mom and I started cracking up. Evie soon learned that she could do her business in any toilet she wanted. There was joyous fanfare and celebrating following this revelation. My baby is growing up. *Tear.*

When it comes to going pee-pee on the potty it's a whole other story. She has done it. She likes doing it. But she gets discouraged easily. When she wears underwear for the day, she'll usually remember to use the potty the first couple of times and stay dry, but inevitably there is an accident. And as soon as she has ONE accident, she wants to wear her diaper again. Because I haven't been really pushy with the whole potty thing thus far, I've pretty much let her call the shots on this one. I've heard too many horror stories of training before kids are ready. Eeesh. Definitely don't want to go there. But I'm pretty sure she IS more than ready, haha...and at least one, but probably both of us, need to man up and just get it over with.

So starting tomorrow, we're doing this thing. I'm going to spend today psyching Evie up for "no more diapers EVER!" And then tomorrow...we're going to give it a valiant effort. For real this time.

It's no surprise to me that my child would do everything backwards from the average kid. That's pretty much Evelyn's style. I've helped train several little ones over the years in daycare and at home, and I have never ever seen a kid poop regularly on the potty before they pee. I've seen kids terrified to poop on the potty; I've seen them absolutely refuse no matter what bribery was offered. So I guess I'm lucky that the hard part is over, right? Haha.

Alright, I'm feeling the need to leave you with an image that has nothing to do with the "p" word. Here ya go:


Who doesn't love a nice rainbow? 

Wish us luck. Tomorrow could be verrry interesting. :)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Climbing Out of the Trenches....

I feel obligated to put something here, since...you know...I've been gone forever. But it isn't as if I have anything exciting to tell you. My weekend? I made friends with this guy:


Or maybe enemies. I'm not sure which. But we definitely spent way too much time together. My head never wants to see the inside of a toilet ever again. And I still don't know what the heck was up with me. Stomach bug? Touch of food poisoning? All I know is that as long as I was lying down I would be totally fine. As soon as I would stand up, it would hit me. I've never ever been sick like that before. And needless to say, I spent a lot of time lying down. My house is a disaster now. Happy Monday to me!

In other news, I had dreams last night that it was Summertime and I spent every morning at my mom and dad's house in a pool lounging. It was glorious. The only problem is my parents don't have a pool. But I'm feeling compelled today to encourage them to just...you know...maybe consider getting one. Hint, hint. Wink, wink. :D

And that's as exciting as it gets around here. Dreams that I have a life in another world somewhere. I have a lot of blog catching up to do today. And if I continue to feel better the girls and I are going to get out for a the first time in a few days and enjoy this day. It's daddy-less Monday, so I PRAY that I'm officially over whatever I had. Here's hoping this week is much better than last week!


I've been stuck on the ABC Blog Challenge for quite a while now. Next letter up: U - Until Now.

Until recently...like just this weekend...I never realized a very quirky aspect of my personality. It's always existed, but I just realized it and how very weird it is. This isn't a universal truth for everything, but when it comes to spiritual matters: I like getting kicked in the butt. I get a thrill out of discovering something I've believed my entire life might not be exactly as I thought. That maybe my view on something is skewed or misplaced. I think it is the greatest thing EVER to be listening to a great speaker open up scripture, read something straight from the Bible, explain it, and it make sense to me in a whole new way. 

In other words, I like it to be revealed to me when I'm WRONG. How weird is that? I got a good kick in the pants this weekend while listening to this sermon from John Piper. That's where I'm coming from today. :) I got kicked right-side up and upside-down and around the corner. That's a great message, if you ask me. 

Haha. 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Hi, friends

I am very very sick. Please say a prayer for me if you think about it today. I haven't been able to keep any food down for the last 24 hours. I'm hoping that I'm back to normal by the end of the weekend. Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Water Water Everywhere!

I can't even believe I'm writing this, but it's March, and yesterday we did WATER PLAY outside. The girls had a blast, and I think we might have even gotten a little bit of sun. Shocker! From what I hear it's warmer in the Midwest right now than it is in California. This is insane, but I'm not going to complain about it. :)


We don't have a water table (yet!) so I decided to improvise with the girls yesterday and fill up some bowls and containers with a little bit of colored water and let them have at it. It may be the hillbilly way, but I'm almost certain the girls didn't mind that we had a makeshift set up. :) If you don't have a water table at your house, this worked perfectly for us. 

I grabbed different "water toys" that were already sitting in my cabinets: cups, a funnel, a colander, measuring cups, and anything else I could find. I colored the water so they could see it more easily when they were playing. I think this goes without saying, but just in case someone isn't thinking one day make sure to only add a drop or two of color to the water...unless you want to soon be taking care of smurf children. Haha.


Evie loved how the colander made the water fall like rain. :)

My mother-in-law always says that if you give kids water to play with outside they'll entertain themselves all day long...and it's so true! We didn't need a pool or a running hose...just some cups and bowls. I brought an extra pitcher of water out with us and set it to the side so that I could refill bowls when they needed it. This worked wonderfully - we didn't have to stop the fun for refills. And since Grace's favorite game was "dump the bowl" we definitely needed the extra water. :)



It didn't take long for Evelyn to figure out a little girl's childhood truth: that dolls make excellent water toys. On her own, she looked up, said "I need to get my Barbies!" and ran into the house. She managed to track down her Ariel doll and she got a big kick out of making her swim in the water. Haha, she kept dipping Ariel's head into the water and saying, "Ariel is gorgeous, mama. She is fashion. She is sooo fashion-y."


I almost tricked myself into believing it was a warm summer day. It certainly felt like it! The girls came inside after this and fell asleep almost immediately. Water, fresh air, and sun is the perfect recipe for a zonked-out child. I forgot how much I appreciated getting to burn off energy outside! We'll definitely be doing this again, but I do want to track down a real water table this season. If you have one that you love, let me know! I always appreciate recommendations. 



Lesson 2: Relating With Money

Last night was one of my favorite FPU lessons of the series, and I wasn't even able to go to class! We didn't have a babysitter last night, but luckily I know where to get the dvd's. :) So even though I missed out on the discussion I was still able to watch the lesson and be refreshed on relationships and money.

Dave tells a story at the beginning of the lesson about the President and First Lady. One day while the couple was being driven on the campaign trail they needed to stop for gas at the gas station. The attendant hurried out and began to fill the car with gasoline, and when the First Lady saw who it was, she jumped out of the car and started having a really animated conversation with him. After a few minutes she got back into the car and the President said, "What was that all about? Who was he?"

"Oh, he was my high school boyfriend," she replied with a smile.

The President got a bit of a chuckle out of this. "Let me get this straight. You could have married a gas station attendant, and instead you married the President of the United States," he said.

The First Lady looked up with a grin. "Who are you kidding?" she replied. "If I would have married him, HE would be the president!"

Behind every great man, right ladies? :)

I love this lesson because it touches on so many different relationships and how they are affected by money. Spouses, friends, kids...there's a lot of statistics in this one and even more great advice. The biggest point I take away from this lesson is that "what you do with your money screams loudly who you are." Where your money goes tells everyone what's important to you and what you value most. It's the reason why it's SO important for couples to be on the same page when it comes to this stuff...future goals, priorities, and values are all reflected in the family budget. Man, I wish I could show this video to all of you. SO GOOD!

***

One of these days I'll get back to the ABC Blog Challenge! So close yet so far away. :) I'm off to make lunch for my kiddos. Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Mysterious Guests and Sunny Days

I always run a risk when I choose not to blog at night after the kids are asleep. Depending on their moods the next morning I may or may not ever get to blog at all, haha. But after spending so much time outside yesterday I was wiped OUT and so ready to get some sleep.

Which brings me to right now. It's after lunch and I'm just now able to sit down for a few minutes. Anytime I tried to get on the computer this morning Grace would promptly close the screen on me, little stinker. :)

I believe I left off yesterday with the girls and I pulling into our driveway on Saturday night to a creepy surprise. When I leave the house during the day I never think to turn the porch light on for myself to see by that night. Because that would be the smart thing to do, of course. So as we turned the corner on our street we began to slowly approach a very dark and quiet house waiting at the top of the driveway.

I had two sleepy girls in the backseat, and as many mothers do, I was planning out just how I would get both of my babies in the house safely by myself. We live on a ridiculously busy street which many morons fly down, and Evie runs straight for the road if I'm not paying attention for one second. So my mind was busy formulating a plan when I looked up and saw the outline of what looked like a hunched over stranger sitting in the dark on our front porch.

They were stock-still and facing forward as if waiting for someone to come home. My heart jumped into my throat. There was no way I was getting out of my car - especially with precious cargo in the backseat. I quickly decided to just turn around in the driveway and go back to my parent's house until Eric could join us later. And that's when I got a closer look at our mysterious visitor. I knew I had seen this person before...somewhere. I started cracking up.

Meet Vernita:

I had seen this thing sitting in our church foyer one Sunday, so I knew someone had left us this little surprise - I just didn't know why. :) I got the girls out of the car and began approaching our visitor. I'm not gonna lie, I knew she was a doll and it still creeped me out in the pitch dark. She is one scary looking lady by moonlight, haha. She was holding a note, which I grabbed, and we shuffled through the front door.

Long story short, our church is doing a fundraiser, and Vernita is making her rounds to let people know about it. Sort of like a fundraising "Boo." I have a feeling I know who left this little lady on our doorstep, and they will probably get a kick out of reading how much drama she caused in our household. Cause the fun wasn't over yet. Eric still had to come home. Haha.

A couple of hours later the girls and I were snuggling in bed when we heard the garage door opening, signaling that Eric had finally pried himself away from the dinner he was hosting. And of course the first thing out of Eric's mouth when he came inside was, "What is that thing on our front porch??"

Poor Eric was terrified when he pulled into the garage. He was afraid of what he would find once he got inside...had his family been abducted? Would the furniture be turned upside down? A 48 Hours Mystery was brewing in his head as he got out of the car. Unlike me, Eric never pays attention to anything, so he had never seen Vernita hanging around the church like I had. Even after I explained to him what she was, he was still creeped out. I won't tell you exactly what he said, haha.

I made Eric take a picture of her the next morning, because you have to see her to truly appreciate her. :) I think it's a cute idea to spread the word about something, but holy moly, Vernita  just about caused a family heart attack around here! 

I really didn't mean for this story to turn into a novel. Whoops! Today's post was supposed to be about all of the fun we had yesterday...because we really did have A LOT of fun! Oh, it was glorious. The sun was shining, the wind was warm, and we had a blast hanging out on our back patio blowing bubbles and then visiting with my parents again. Monday nights are Eric's new school nights, so we always have dinner with my family on Mondays. The girls swung and ran around and drove power wheels. We took a walk and played at the park. Let's just say, the baths that they got after lunch yesterday were a complete waste, because by the time the sun was setting they were grubby little messes! (Can't say that I was much better, haha.)




I didn't get pictures of it all, but I did manage to snap a few of our bubble-blowing shenanigans. 





And I think we might get ready for an encore. Right about...now!

We can't let a gorgeous day go to waste. :)

Hope you have a SUNNY day!




Monday, March 12, 2012

Weekend Living

Ah.... For the last two weekends we've just been taking it easy around here. It doesn't make for super exciting blog posts, but it sure is nice to relax sometimes instead of constantly being on the go, go, go. We hung out at home, watched movies, played with kiddos, and didn't cook - which is probably my favorite part of every weekend. :) We also spent a lot of time lying around while laughing our tooshies off at the most random things possible. Including, but not limited to: ideas to prank our neighbors and Eric's favorite: the speedo burrito. Don't ask!

We did venture out on Saturday evening, though. Eric cleaned up and slapped on a tie to host the annual Lincoln Day Dinner for our county, and the girls and I enjoyed celebrating my big little brother's 21st birthday. Boohoo! Twenty-one??


When we arrived at my parent's house we found that the birthday boy was in the backyard assembling the family's new trampoline. You may not remember this, but we laid the old trampoline to rest last Fall after it took one too many trips over the fence during our crazy Midwest storms. That old friend lasted for years and years, but it's poor mangled body just couldn't stand any longer.


But could the Feldt family last for long without a bouncy insurance catastrophe waiting to happen? No siree. My family walks on the wild side. Jolly Old St. Nicholas made sure to bring a brand spankin' new one for a whole new generation of kiddos to spend hours on. This new-fangled model has a NET, which I probably would not have been a fan of myself as a kid, but now that I HAVE kids of my own, it sounds like a pretty good idea to me. :)


Especially since my dare-devil child Grace the Face McGee probably loves that darn trampoline more than anyone. She cracks me up!

We had a yummy taco dinner with lots of home made goodies. My mama is totally going "crunchy" and eating as naturally and as healthy as possible. So she made her own refried beans and taco seasoning and guacamole....and it was yummy. No preservatives for these peeps! (I'm sure she would be very pleased if I insert here that if you know anyone who might be suffering with Alzheimer's they NEED to be taking coconut oil in some way, shape, or form. Does wonders, I hear.) Spreading the coconut oil gospel, mom! Oh, and don't bake with aluminum foil, either. Because that can cause Alzheimer's. Now you can't say you didn't know. ;)



And as per tradition, my mom also makes each of her children birthday cakes each year in their flavor of choice. Since my brother is a bit strange (kidding!) he chose carrot cake to ring in his 21st year. (And it was really, really, good. I want some cake. Now.)

It was a fun evening, I must say. Oh, and I have to throw this picture in here, because it makes me smile:


Gracie was GLUED to my brother, which I thought was hilarious, because after a while he didn't know what to do with her, hehe. When we were eating cake a little later Grace wouldn't take a bite from me, but she crawled right up on Roger's lap and wanted lots of cake from him. :)

Eric was still hosting at the dinner when we were ready to go home, so I knew the girls and I would be heading to a dark and empty house when we left. But we were in for a bit of a creepy surprise when we pulled up in the driveway, and I almost didn't get out of the car with my babies! More on that tomorrow.

Right now I have to save my children from themselves. They are performing amazing feats on their Mickey airplane toy, and I'm pretty sure my oldest is about to break her neck. :) Haha. I hope you had a great weekend! And I hope we are able to get out a little this week and enjoy weather that doesn't require bundling children up to look like little puffy marshmallows. I long for the days we can just up and go without coats or SOCKS. What a pain in the rear when you have squirmy kiddos!

Okay, now I really have to go. The End.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Confession Friday 3-9!

So I couldn't get on the internet yesterday morning. I called Eric and asked if he could just hop on the old blogeroo and say a few words so as to not leave anyone hanging. Something like this would have worked:

"Hey, guys. Adrien can't get on the internet today, but she wanted me to let you know that she should be back tomorrow. Have a nice day."

Obviously, that did not get accomplished. Thank you, dear. :p

I confess that every time I see a picture like this on Facebook, it cracks me up.


Yes, you can balance a broom at the solstice or equinox. Or...on any other day of the year. :)

^^ I confess that I had an astronomy professor once who always said, "Soltice" and it drove me insane. SolSTICE, SolSTICE. You're an astronomy professor for crying out loud! She was a pretty interesting lady, though...had a really neat laser pointer. :)

I confess that Evelyn's new word of choice makes me giggle. To her, everything is "cute." "Oh, that baby is sooo cute!" "That show was too cute!" And my personal favorite, "Mama, you're cute!"

I confess that the most annoying part of potty training (for me) is NOT the accidents. It's all the times Evelyn says she has to potty when she really doesn't. I can't tell you how much time I've wasted watching Evelyn sit and hum at the wall.

I confess that I really don't care when Evie is potty trained, because I dread the day we have to stop every ten minutes in public for our kid to use the bathroom. Diapers are just so convenient! Haha.

I confess that I am ready to eat my weight in barbecue for every other meal. Come on, warm weather. Let's speed it up a little!


I confess that Eric revealed to me the secret to every man's happiness this week. I have to say, it was not a revelation. :)

I confess that I woke up this morning laughing my BUTT off. I must've had a really funny dream, haha. I think Eric thinks I'm nuts, but seriously...I laughed at nothing forever after that. Not a horrible way to start the day, I suppose.

I confess that there are some great sales for things I think I need this weekend, and I'm pretty sure I'm going to be turning on the charm with the hubs this evening. Ohhhh Eric.... :)

I confess that I'm wearing old frumpy clothes, I have a rat's nest in the back of my hair, and I need a shower. I should be bothered by this, but I'm sure I'll stay this way until I absolutely have to get off of this couch.

I confess that I'm sooo excited for Evie's birthday this year! Getting closer. Still not close, but closer!

***

Speaking of birthdays, we would like to wish our friend Meagan a big fat Happy Birthday today! I miss your blogs, girl!

The weather looks extremely promising this weekend, and I am beyond excited about it. Maybe I will finally get to take the new camera out for a spin. Hope you all do something FUN!

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