Thursday, May 29, 2014

And just like that, we're done.

Today is Kylie's last day of Kindergarten.  Talk about a bittersweet day!  
   
It's fun to reflect on how much she has grown this past year.  She lost her two bottom teeth and went up a size in clothes.

But more than that, she's learned a lot and become very responsible.  Every morning she would make her bed and get dressed before ever leaving her bedroom {by choice}.  She would pack her lunch, brush her teeth, and review her calendar to see what "special activity" she had that day in school.

When she got home from school each day, she would promptly do her math homework, then put her backpack neatly in the closet.

Kylie has already been recommended to participate in the advanced first grade math class.  She's learned to read, her handwriting has improved dramatically, and she's made a lot of new friends.  It's been such a great year for her!

To be continued in August...

Thursday, May 22, 2014

These are a few of my favorite things...

  1. Pandora.  Type in "Sweet Pea" and that station will make your entire soul happy.
  2. My Sunny Days air freshener.  Thanks to that, my house smells like springtime.
  3. The Monon Center.  {Our equivalent to the YMCA}.  I exercise there several times a week and I always leave a new woman.  One day I'll get brave and try one of their classes.
  4. Thursdays.  They are Josh's busiest days, but lately I've been having lunch dates with him and that makes my whole day.
  5. This.  Blue skies and a shade tree.  Can it get any better than that?

Sometimes I get lucky and all of my favorite things happen on the same day.

I call that Heaven.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Battle of The Slump

I hate to admit this but almost every single day I have to battle "The Slump."  {Sounds like a Dr. Seuss character, doesn't it?} Sadly, it is not.  The Slump I'm referring to is the urge to forgo my responsibilities and just laze around.  Don't get me wrong, I love nothing more than collapsing in my bed at night and feeling accomplished.  But being a stay-at-home mom to 3 young children isn't always conducive to my goal to be productive.

I'll use a day from last week as an example.  By 10:30 in the morning it felt like an eternity had passed already.  Jackson decided not to nap that morning and was cranky.  Summer was complaining that she was bored but nothing I suggested sounded interesting to her.  I had a to-do list a mile long and every time I tried to tackle it, I would get interrupted.  I finally decided to take the kids for a walk.  

It. Was. Miserable.

I was so desperate to get some fresh air that I loaded up the kids in our double stroller {which is not meant to be pushed outdoors for any length of time} and walked for 45 minutes.  It was literally 99% humidity and Summer talked the. whole. time.  Good gravy, that was a LONG day.  THE SLUMP.
Yes, Summer is wearing a cape and dress-up shoes.  I'll get to that later...

BUT, my life is not always like that.  Those are simply moments.  For the most part, I absolutely LOVE what I do.  I treasure the time I'm able to be home with my kids because I know this phase will pass all too quickly.  So when The Slump starts to emerge, I try to remind myself that my family is pretty darn cool.

Today all of the kindergarten classes at Kylie's school took a field trip to a park close by.  I decided to drop by because Summer desperately wanted to follow in her big sister's footsteps and go to the park too.  I warned her that even if we did happen to see Kylie, she might want to play with her friends instead.  My heart just melted when Kylie realized we were there and she immediately ran up, grabbed Summer's hand, and led her over to where her friends were playing.  

Don't worry, Summer held her own.

I just love to watch the two of them together.  They really are the best of friends {most of the time}.

I should probably explain the cape now.  Summer watches "Frozen" at least 3 times a week.  She has it memorized and acts out most of the Elsa scenes.  She insists that I call her Queen Elsa and style her hair in a French braid every single day.  The cape and dress shoes come with us everywhere: the grocery store, the library, lunch dates with Daddy, you name it.  I truly love her free spirit.
 
 
And then there's this guy:
Isn't this what everyone looks at anyway?  :)

Jackson doesn't seem to mind his handsome features.  He seriously played with this mirror for an hour and a half.

Isn't that hair outrageous?!  I kind of wonder how big his 'fro will be if we choose not to cut it until he's, like, two.

Anyway, all kidding aside, this boy is SO ready to be mobile!  He's getting up on all fours and rocking so he's almost there.  While there's no going back once your baby is on the move, I long for it because they're so much happier when they can get where they want to go.

The girls absolutely adore him.  They were fighting so much about who would get to feed him that we arranged a deal: Summer could feed him a bottle and Kylie could spoon feed him.

Tonight was perhaps the cherry on top of my family's awesomeness.  While the thunderstorm raged outside, we worked together to assemble an armoire.  Summer counted the hardware, Kylie read the instructions, and before we knew it that thing was done.  The kids went to bed late but it was totally worth the extra family time.  I love that my girls are just as eager to reach for tools as they are princess dresses.

When I focus on these moments-- rather than the frustrating, unproductive, lazy ones-- I rediscover that The Slump hasn't gotten the best of us.  We're doing OK.

Monday, May 19, 2014

8 Years Strong

Yesterday was our 8th wedding anniversary.  As Josh and I sat on opposite ends of the pew at church with 3 rowdy children in between, we shot each other a look that said, "So this is what 8 years together looks like."  And I wouldn't change a thing!

When we got married, Josh's college buddy, Sherman, served as his best man.  So it seemed pretty fitting that Sherman happened to be passing through our town on our anniversary.  Our kids hit it off right away, and Josh and Sherman picked up right where they left off :)

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Meet the Author

This evening we attended Meet the Author Night in Kylie's classroom at school.  For the past 6 weeks, she and her fellow kindergarteners have been doing research on animals and documenting their findings in a book. 


Kylie chose to research tigers {of course}.

Each child read their book in front of their classmates and everyone in attendance.  I was impressed by how naturally that came to Kylie.

It's hard to believe that Kylie's first year of school is almost over already!  She has grown SO much.  I'm amazed at how well she reads and writes.  At home, she practices her skills often by drawing pictures and creating homemade cards for everyone under the sun.  You never know what she will create next!

I sure love this sweet girl and I'm glad that I'm the first one to have her autograph!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Momentous Occasion

Today is a very big day for a number of reasons.

#1. Mother's Day
I'm so blessed to have such an amazing mother.  She has always been so supportive of me, and over the years we've become good friends.  It's a wonderful thing, being friends with your mom.  She is also a super fun grandma :) Happy Mother's Day, Mom.  I love you so.

And how could I forget these little munchkins who made me a mother?  Each day as I look in their eyes and behold their innocence, I realize just how lucky I am that they're mine.  

#2. My Birthday
I actually love when my birthday falls on Mother's Day.  I feel extra special and loved.  It's a little weird being closer to 30 than to 20, but I'm OK with that because I'm in a good place.  Literally!  Look at that handsome man by my side :)  I wouldn't have it any other way.

#3. My Parents' 30th Anniversary
What an exciting thing to celebrate!  They have been through a lot together in their 30 years of marriage but I think they would say that the high points outweigh the lows.  I have no problem admitting that I put my parents on a pedestal.  They're pretty much amazing.

#4. Jackson is 8 Months Old
I feel like Jackson hit a growth spurt recently.  {I swear that shirt fit him when I dressed him that morning.....}  
But seriously, I'm amazed at how much he's learning and how independent he's become.  He rolls and stretches his way across the floor to reach for various toys.  He sits by himself.  He even holds his own bottle sometimes.  And last Sunday he said "Dada" for the first time!  I just can't get enough of this precious boy of mine.
To end this post, here's a lovely quote I found about motherhood.  Oh, how true it is ;)
Humorous Mother Daughter Quotes | ... quotes funny pic sayings about moms images of funny mother nice quotes

Monday, May 5, 2014

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

One of Kylie's friends invited us to a Cinco de Mayo party.  We had such a blast celebrating this fabulous Mexican holiday...with our friends from Poland...at a restaurant called "Greek Tony's... where they serve Italian food.  Hey, why not?!