Friday, March 29, 2013

The Easter Story - Told By Kids!

Sorry for being MIA yesterday - and I really am this time. :) The morning got away from me. The kids and I were making a "movie." Haha.

I had this idea like, a month ago to do a video for Easter. And of course I waited until the day before Easter weekend to actually make it. Do you have any idea how long it takes to just write some words on signs and then sweet talk your kids into holding them up? Quite a while.

And. I'm not on Instagram (I know, what is wrong with me?) but I finally understand why people find those tranquil edited instagram-style pictures so appealing. Because they take a normal photo, like say, a child sitting on a bed holding up a piece of paper, and turn it into a statement that says, "oooh, my life is dreamy and interesting!" I'm down with that. Dreamy and interesting is good. :)

So, here it is. The story of Easter, by my kids, a little dreamified, and set to my absolute MOST favorite song right now. I tell Eric to turn it on every time we're in the car. There are actually several versions of it floating around, and I like them ALL. Can't go wrong. :)

(Might want to make it bigger to see all of the words, haha.)




We hope you have a wonderful Easter this weekend.

He is risen!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Cowboy Reagan

After we had announced we were expecting baby #3, but before we knew if we would be having a boy or a girl, our good friend Helen Fowler came up to me at church one morning and handed me the cutest little cowboy outfit. "I know you're going to have a boy," she said.

I laughed and thanked her for the gift - the very first one that Reagan ever received. Sure enough Ms. Helen (who has a sixth sense about these things) was right on the money! We got our boy, as predicted. Reagan came into the world just five days before Halloween, and that outfit would have made the cutest little costume for him. Of course, it was much too big at the time.

So I hung it up, waiting for another opportunity for him to wear it. The only problem was, how many opportunities does one have to dress up as a cowboy? Haha. But I knew if we didn't let Reagan wear it soon he wouldn't get to at all. And so...that's when I got that crazy idea late on Monday night to dress little Reago up for the fun of it. :) Couldn't let his sheriff's uniform go to waste!

It's a good thing I have a happy, easy going baby. He humors his mama. I love him to peices.

And now, I'd like to introduce to you: Sheriff Reagan - cutest cowboy east of the Mississippi! ;)


Haha, sorry, pal. We seem to have the most trouble with hats these days. :)


Much better.



I had to get a picture of the fringe on his chubby little chaps. :) This outfit was adorable on the hanger, but I couldn't get over how much it made me giggle when we put it on!

Eric thinks Reagan was cattle calling, Evie thinks he was yodeling, but really Reagan caught site of something mighty fine in the distance.




 It was the ceiling fan. :) All of my babies have always gone gaga for ceiling fans!

"I'll tell you what, that's a perty ceiling fan right dere!"


Ahahaha, get's me every time. 

So it wasn't Halloween, and we didn't have a special occasion to wear it to, but I was able to snap a few pictures on the day Reagan turned 5 months old that I will truly treasure forever. Thank you Helen for this gift - it ended up being absolutely priceless to me!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

How I Succeed at Doing Nothing

Poor Reagan needs some new sleepers.
He's growing so fast, he is literally busting at the seams. 



This one has earned him the nickname, "Hobo toes."

So last night I tried my hardest to have a productive evening, and it just wasn't happening. I was thwarted at every step. I tried to get an early start on Easter by stuffing some eggs. But it proved to be quite a loud activity, and I was almost caught by Gracie. Had I not thought fast when I heard the pitter patter of her feet and turned off the lamp, plunging the room into total darkness, I totally would have been busted.

So I moved on to a new activity.

Thought I might do a little rearranging and sorting in the basement. It was only Midnight. Ya know. Night was still young. :) But about 10 minutes into that I saw a spider, and well...

Time for a new activity.

I debated cleaning the kitchen, creating a display for my silver in the china cabinet, and/or discovering a cure for something, but each of those had their own drawbacks. In the end I opted for sitting on my rear and blogging. So here I am.

But now I'm just pooped. I think I'm going to dress up old hobo toes as a cowboy today and take pictures of him. That just sounds like a fun idea. Random? Totally. That's how my brain works. It's a crazy place in there. In ma brain. 

Better get some rest. Who knows what new activities I'll think up but won't get accomplished today. It's   exhausting doing all of this thinking!


P.S. Happy Birthday to my cousin Alisa! She would have been 32 or 33 today, I believe. Alisa lost her battle with leukemia nearly 20 years ago. She was just 13 years old.

My cousins Frannie, Missy, Alisa, and Me :)

Alisa was one of my very best friends and cousins. She passed away when I was only eight years old. That was a lot for an eight year old to process, and I know everyone in my family still misses her very much. Hate is not a word we typically promote around here, but I HATE cancer!!!! 

So Happy Birthday, Alisa. I know we'll get to hang out again someday. Until then - "Jump jump! The Mac Dad will make you jump jump! The Daddy Mac will make you Jump Jump! Kriss Kross will make you Jump Jump!" Oh, the 90's. :)

Monday, March 25, 2013

A Very Wordy Weekend Wrap Up :)

Sometimes snow days are sucktacular, and sometimes snow days are just what the doctor ordered. I can't believe I'm saying this, I mean...it's SPRING. But yesterday was a wonderful day. My heart is full, my batteries are charged, and I think I'm ready for this week. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

On Friday Eric had a meeting after work, so the kids and I stayed home, made a big pot of soup, and I sorted socks. Millions and millions of socks...big socks, little socks, socks socks socks. (Yes, I definitely hang out with children all day.) Oh, the glamorous and exciting life of the stay at home mom. No one is going to be upset if you're just a little bit jealous of me.

On Saturday the weather actually wasn't too terribly bad, and Evie and Grace got to go on a fun egg hunt with their grandma. They had their faces painted, got lots of candy, ran around in the fresh air. I'd say the girls had a pretty swell Saturday!

But that's not the only swell thing that happened on Saturday. We were very happy to visit the nursing home this weekend to celebrate my uncle Charlie's 72nd birthday. (Hello - praise the Lord!) Of course, by the time we made our late arrival he was totally zonked, but we heard before we arrived he was sitting up and smiling, and he was enjoying his birthday with friends and family. He even looked great in his sleep when we peeked in on him.

What a difference two weeks can make! I am still so thankful for the staff at Des Peres Hospital for taking such good care of him.

{And...side note...a baby in a nursing home will attract those who live there like moths to a flame. We couldn't walk three feet without being stopped. The little old ladies loved my baby's big blue eyes. Can't say I blame them. :)}

We had a bit of shopping to do and then we went home with all of our kids and bunkered down for the impending Spring Snowpocalypse that promised to descend upon us.

Reagan got to try out the exersaucer for the very first time - the same one that both of his sisters used before him.


No no, Gracie, I said Reagan tried out the exersaucer.
(Haha, of course both girls tried getting in that thing before their little brother had his turn.)



He did great with it - stood up just like a big boy.
Stop that growing up, buddy.

This picture cracks me up. I think he's telling everyone to just back up, okay, cause he's got this.


Third-borns don't a lot of time to themselves, you see. :)

We woke up on Sunday morning and it actually hadn't started snowing yet, but the weather was just...nasty. It began to rain, and it instantly froze on our bedroom window. Given the predicted forecast for the rest of the morning there was no way we wanted to drag our three small kids outside, so we didn't go to church. (Gasp!)

It was a good choice, I think. Because by the time we would have been strolling out of there it really was coming down, and fast! So what did we do stuck indoors all day long? We had the best lazy family day ever, and it was MUCH needed!

Of course, we started off our morning with bacon and eggs.
We drank some yummy hot chocolate.
And Evie tried walking in her mama's boots.


But she mostly just fell a lot, and I caught this picture right before she toppled over once. (Funniest face I ever saw.)


I love her shoe choices...one black, one brown, and on the wrong feet to boot! (Pun intended. Ba dum ching!)

I did lots of laundry (including the slip covers as you'll see) and Eric did some work on his upcoming business school competition this week.


Look ma, no feet!
(And yes, that is Eric Robert - Mr. Apple- on a Dell computer. It's his work laptop. Haha.)

While the snow was swirling around outside I kept opening up the backdoor to see just how crazy it was. And every time I did I couldn't help but notice one thing: the sound of a ton of birds chirping, but no birds anywhere in site. Poor things must have thought they lost their tiny bird minds. Occasionally one would come hopping up by our back porch like a kid running across scorching pavement on a hot summers day...only, the opposite in this case. It really seemed like they were looking for food, but they weren't having much luck.

I just felt so bad for the little guys. I didn't have any bird food in the house, so just to be safe I looked up what to feed birds, and it's a good thing I did! I was totally going to throw out some bread crumbs, but apparently that's a no no (who knew!) so instead I went with a "safe" option - peanut butter. (And if you're wondering, bread isn't good for birds because it has no nutritional value for them. Learn something new every day!)


We slathered some peanut butter on pinecones and hung them up for our neighborhood bird friends. It probably just froze, haha, but we tried. 

After that we made a snack of our own.


The classic, "get rid of the too-ripe bananas" banana bread stand by.
It was yummy!
(Snow days = a lot of snacking. I think I ate my weight in food yesterday.)

We watched movies, relaxed, made dinner, relaxed some more. 
It was rejuvenating. 

BUT.

My very favorite part of the day was definitely time spent snuggling with the family.
If you were wondering where all the sunshine and rainbows were yesterday, I'm pretty sure we were hoarding them all. (Eric's going to shoot me for putting up all of these pictures, but I love them, so it's okay.)







Sigh. 
Love those boys. I really do!

Even though we have a crazy week ahead of us, I am thankful for the wonderful weekend we have under our belts. I truly believe that home should be a safe-haven where you rest and recharge and have a few moments of peace before heading out into the hustle and bustle of the world. That's all that I want to create for my family. That's what being a homemaker's job really is, in my opinion. Not to be the house maid, but to be the one who oversees that there is plenty of peace and love to go around. Sometimes I fail miserably at that. But I'm working on it. And days like yesterday give me the encouragement I need to learn from my mistakes and keep going.

It was a great weekend. :)

Friday, March 22, 2013

Confession Friday 3-22!

I confess that Eric had an Oh crap, I lost my wedding ring moment this week. He was very sad about it, which was making me sad for him. BUT. In an "aha!" moment just before bed last night he remembered one more place to look, and he found it, and now we're married again, and all is right with the world.

Speaking of wedding things...I confess that sometimes I wish I could go back in time and redo my wedding. It would be so much cooler the second time, cause I'd know what I was doing. :)

I confess that I am addicted to food. It's a problem, because we keep buying it, and I keep EATING it. I love food.

I confess that I gave Gracie a black eye yesterday.


Or, she got into my mascara. 
The black eye is a better story, though. 
Stinker! :)

I confess that if stores offered free shipping all of the time, I would spend so much more money...so it's probably a good thing that they don't. But I mean, it would be smart of them, because I would spend SO MUCH more money.

I confess that our little blog is finally going to roll over 200,000 page views soon. And do you know what's gonna happen? Nuthin. We'll just keep on shlumping along like Eeyore. (Thanks for reading, friends!)

I confess that, given some creepy occurrences in the news lately, I am now officially freaked out about sinkholes. What a way to go - swallowed up by the earth. I mean...who would ever imagine that would be your demise? One minute you're there, the next minute...(ding) going down!

I confess that Aldi produce is really something magical. I love Aldi, but their fruit changes from good to bad in the snap of a finger. Right now I have bananas on my counter that are simultaneously green AND browning. Haha, how is that even possible? Oh, Aldi....

I confess that I'm already failing miserably at keeping one of the goals I had for this year...to take more video of my kids. I think it's because I need one of these. Oh, Eriiiic! :)

I confess that I was asked to be on our church's decorating committee to spiff up the new building, which I'm happy to do, but...I have a secret: I don't know anything about decorating churches. I am a useless contributor and there are only four of us on the committee so I can't just show up and suck wind. But, if they want paper sack trees lining the walls, I am their woman!



I confess that our children have discovered Tiny Toons, and now I'm singing that darn theme song in my sleep. Make it stop!

I confess that I have no other plans but to stay home and cuddle my babies all day long. Yes, this is rare even for a stay at home mom. Chores can wait today!

Oh, and Evelyn wants to confess something. She says: I like to play with my toys every single day. :)

Hope you all have a great weekend! There are some festivities happening around here, but if the weather doesn't cooperate or magically get warmer I have no idea what we're going to be doing. Come on, Spring, kick Winter out of here! :)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Pinterest - The Demise of our Children? Um, No.

Have you ever known someone that is just too good to be true? But like, not in a sarcastic way. Really, just someone who is awesome?

I know someone like that. And I'm not just saying it because we share an address. I mean it. I know a man who works hard, who loves deeply, who sacrifices daily, and provides greatly. And you wanna know the kicker? At the end of the day, he thanks ME.

Me! For playing with our kids all day! (And keeping them alive - barely.)

Eric, you done lost your mind, but I love you for it. I'm sorry you had a BEYOND stressful day yesterday. But you should've heard the way your girls talked about you while you were gone. You can't buy that. And those little leg kicks Reagan does when you walk into the room? Those aren't preformed for just anybody. I know, I'm his mama. :)

These next two weeks are going to be crazy for our family. Eric has meetings every single night except for Saturdays and maybe Monday. But it's only temporary, and we can do it. I'm the Little Red Engine, and I'm going to pull my caboose through to Easter if it kills me!

***



I've been reading A LOT of articles and blog posts lately about the "pinterest" generation and how it's created an even greater epidemic of "keeping up with the Joneses" and how all of the children of today are going to grow up as entitled spoiled brats, because their families celebrate too much.

It's sparked debate all over the internet - especially among mom groups. And I've been wondering if I should say something about it. Because on many counts we are are one of "those" families that mad moms are pointing their fingers at. Give me a menial holiday and I'll give you an excuse to make it special any old day of the week. Yes, we make cookies for Valentine's Day. Yes, we celebrate Easter and Christmas and even St. Patrick's Day with traditions, and heck yes we have a darn Elf on the Shelf. It's what we do to make things fun. (It's what this mom does to keep her sanity while cooped up with young kids all day long, seven days a week.)

First world problems. I'll tell you what. :)

Here's the thing:

It's okay if arts and crafts isn't your thing. It's okay if you don't celebrate every "holiday" on the calendar. It's okay if hand made and home made doesn't appeal to you or if you simply don't have the time. It's okay if you're lucky to just keep your kids fed and bathed. It's okay if you burn food and kill plants. It's okay if you're not Miss Organization, Mrs. Clean, or Miss Fix it.

Everybody has their thing.

Here is what is NOT okay. It's not okay to deem your abilities, your self-worth, or your successes any less than they are based on something you saw someone else do. It is not okay to let comparison steal your joy. It's not okay to sit around constantly thinking that the grass is greener in your neighbor's perfectly manicured lawn...even if it IS literally greener. :) It's not okay to pass unnecessary judgments on others based on what is important to YOUR family.

We have a few days of the year that are just plain fun around here, and to some it might even seem over the top. We love birthdays and we can't get enough of the holidays. But the other 350 days of the year? We're just a mess! I try to tell people this and some don't believe me. So here's your documented proof from this week. :)

I was tired yesterday. Dog tired. And do you know what my kids did for fun?

We tied a deflated balloon to the ceiling fan and they batted it around, tether-ball style.


I'm not joking.
Anybody want to pin this? Be my guest. Deflated tether-ball, for the absolutely zonked mom.

I took my kids out in footie pajamas and rain boots, cause I didn't want to wrestle them into real clothes.

I haven't given Reagan a real bath in a week. Gracie likes to run off with the shampoo, and I didn't feel like making the mess.

And this is what my girls were doing while my back was turned folding laundry the other day.
They were playing "baby." Gracie was (clearly) the baby.


That would be my child, in a bassinet, in the kitchen (?), with a bib and a jar of peanut butter.

I mean. 

I died. This is my real life. 

I answer the door by appointment only, because our house is WWIII most days. 

But we have our holidays and birthdays!

The moral of this story is that our lives aren't perfect, but we're HAPPY. Can't pin that, unfortunately. No amount of completed pins can change the way your heart feels. We've found only Jesus can really do that, but that's an ENTIRELY different post, haha. And you wanna know the truth - this chick doesn't even get on pinterest. Like...ever. Eric kept deleting my "pin it" button, and I gave up long ago. :D So, no, mad moms. I am sorry to tell you. Pinterest isn't entirely responsible for the downfall of the American family, spoiled kids, and over indulgence. That can only happen if you let your heart go there. My advice: don't let it. :)

P.S. For what it's worth, mom's were doing pinterest-worthy things long before pinterest existed. I can't be the only person who had a mama who cooked from scratch, created holiday traditions, and occasionally crafted with her kids. This is not a new phenomenon....but the internet, now that IS fairly new. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring!

YEEEEEOWZA!!

IT'S SPRING!

And no one here is mad about it.

I mean, the temperature is kind of awful, and it doesn't really feel like Spring, but if the calendar says it is - it is. 

Since we can't exactly go out and enjoy blooming trees and rainbows at the moment (where are you blooming trees and rainbows??) we decided to construct some Spring of our own - of the paper variety, of course. We're kind of old pros at this activity...palm trees, enchanted forest trees, and now Spring trees. If you can't hop a magic carpet and fly through space and time to your desired destination, then just create it for yourself. That's what we say!

And speaking of magic carpets, we brought out an old friend. ;)



Reagan, meet magic carpet. Carpet - Reagan. It's going to be a beautiful relationship. 



 I tried to get all edit-y and collagy and stuff with the pictures we took, but it just wasn't happening past this point. Now would be a good and appropriate place to say "Ain't nobody got time for that!"

We're just happy it's SPRING!!





(Actually, this is what happens you blast Michael Jackson's "Beat It" for the girls, cause our girls love themselves some MJ.)





 Ahhh...nothing like kicking back beneath the blooms of an Aldi bag tree...some good ole Michael Jackson wafting on the ceiling fan breeze. 

 It just screams SPRING. ;)

It was at this point that I remembered we had some totally awesome head gear that would take our travels to Springland to an entirely new level. The girls agreed - it definitely made spinning and twirling a million times more fun.





Reagan had a few issues with his....



Teehee.

So yes, we definitely found a way to have fun, burn off some energy, and celebrate a new season all without walking out of the front door. 

Now please, please weather...don't hold out on us too much longer. We need some real fresh air. :)

Gnome down!


Happy Spring!

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