Thursday, April 28, 2011

9AM snapshots


His toes

Her daily dress

Sunshine on shoulders

makes me happy

We're headed back outside.
Happy Thursday.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It's About Balance

If you ever need to get something done, give it to the busiest person.  Have you ever heard that before?

I feel pretty good when I have a busy day and yet get everything done I planned on. The other day was one of those, I was in up to my ears.  I had my last few pans of muffins in the oven, a pot of pasta boiling on the stove, and I was cutting Connor's hair.  Then the phone rang. It was a business phone call, one that I was very eager to receive.
Needless to say, one pan of muffins got forgotten in the oven and got quite dark, and I'm not sure if Connor's hair is even on the top. 
But it was a great day! It was beautiful weather and the kids were in and out all day with a nice breeze coming into my kitchen. The muffins hit the spot and I am eager to plan my set of classes I have signed on to teach. 

After a busy, productive day like yesterday, I feel like I can tackle anything this week.  
Realistically, I know that I cannot be in up to my ears every day of the week and survive. I am not so naive nor so perfect as to claim that life is always wonderful and I am invincible. But I have this high, this feeling of Super Mom.  And I guess that is a very good thing, given my current set of daily battles...

I have decided that we would take a temporary break from the Nintendo. We are on week two, and so far, so good. My three year old has had some really nasty behavior lately, much of which happens after we tell him it is time to turn off the game. So we have decided to live life without it for a while.
I really hate electronic babysitters.
And I really love them.

I think that kids should learn how to entertain themselves, should play outside, should use their creative little imaginations. 

I also love that the electronic babysitter, aka Nintendo, keeps the older kids quiet and downstairs during the baby's nap time, thus ensuring nap time is not cut short.  I love that I can send them down to play, and know that they won't surface or need me until I say that their game time is up, leaving me to sew, pay bills, or whatever it is I need to get done. 
How bad is that? 
We are throwing around the idea of getting rid of the thing permanently. For rainy days and sick days we always have the computer. The computer games we buy are educational at least, whereas the Nintendo is not. I just talked myself into chucking the thing into the dumpster. Maybe.

You should hear my three year old talk about Mario. And Captain Falcon. And Luigi.
He loves to play Nintendo. Thats why I hesitate to take it away. And thats exactly why I am worried about keeping it.

And in other daily battles, my three year old is still not potty-trained. I am getting really, really tired of changing him, let alone buying pull-ups.

Connor came home with a note saying that a case of head lice has been discovered in his classroom!

It's all good. I have this feeling of Super Mom (as well as another stash of potty treats and a $9 bottle of tea tree oil shampoo).

Monday, April 25, 2011

Our fun little Photoshoot

We had a wonderful Holiday weekend at Grandma and Grandpa's house.
One thing I noticed while there, is that my kids' pictures on Grandma's Grandkids wall are seriously outdated.  I have been meaning to get some new snapshots of my kiddos, but well, life gets busy. I haven't been successful at taking photos at each kids' birthday, with either the weather, the child's grown out hair-do, or the scatterbrained mother being to blame.

Today, I checked portrait taking off of my list. 

We had a picnic lunch at the park,

then walked around downtown, looking for neat backdrops.  
I really liked the red brick of this church. Aubrey loved the flowers.

It is usually difficult to get a picture of Brant, but today he was willing to be charming for a few photos.

Donovan, on the other hand, was having nothing to do with picture taking.  How does anybody get their almost-two-year old to look at the camera and smile!??

Getting a family picture is always a piece of work.  I stopped asking them to smile and look at the camera after about the tenth shot. I would place them where I wanted them, and be happy if they stayed put.
Its fun to see their individual personalities.

I have no idea why I put red socks on Donovan. I mean, its not like I have a huge pile of laundry to do or anything.

So maybe I'm a little biased, but gosh, I have beautiful children!

We walked by this cute little house, and I thought it was perfect! It looked like nobody was home, so we took a few shots. Brant sat for two pictures, then was done. I guess I shouldn't have mentioned anything about the owners coming home.

I have some priceless pictures of my kiddos and we all had a lot of fun...
why on earth did I wait so long to go on this little photoshoot? 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Cheep cheep

Here's a fun and simple spring craft for your little ones to make:

baby chicks in their egg shells.

I can't take the credit for coming up with this one, we made these at story hour today.

Here's what you need:
-egg shell halves
-colored cardstock cut into squares
-cotton ball (ours had been painted yellow) or yellow pom pom
-craft eyes or small black paper circles (it looked like ours were from a hole punch)
-orange paper triangle for beak (or you could do a diamond then fold it in half)

Simply glue the eyes and beak to the cotton ball, then glue the ball into the egg shell.  Glue the shell to the paper square.

The librarian commented that she always made these growing up and used them for name cards for the Easter dinner table. Cute idea. I would print the names and a little picture or 'cheep cheep' on the paper before cutting them out. Another idea would be to glue some colored easter grass under and around the egg shell.

We're all getting excited for Easter around here.  The kids are no doubt excited to see what the Easter Bunny will leave them (I have yet to decide if I'm going to do baskets or just a chocolate bunny). As for me, I'm looking forward to Easter Services and a day spent with family with a delicious meal.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Is it Summer Yet?

We are on this spring roller coaster called WEATHER.
We climb up into glorious 71 degree days, then plunge into 34 degree, snow filled ones.
Of course the kids are just thrilled with the ride. Me? Not so much. But the snow is melting, so I won't complain so long as this ride is leveling out.

A single rainy day isn't about to ruin anyone's fun around here.

After all, that's what electronic handheld games are for - cold, rainy days. Right?

I'm kind of thinking they are good for other purposes as well.
Such as long car rides and keeping the toddler still long enough to get some photos with his whole body in the frame.

Everyone's got to have a rainy day every once in a while.
Especially if their entertainment is as fun and adorable as mine!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Sunblock, check!

Last Friday was the warmest day of spring we've seen yet.  Flagstaff reached 71 degrees. Ahhhhh.

With my sister in town, we had plans to take the kids swimming at our local pool.  Dean had a better idea - forget the indoor pool, lets head to Sedona!

After an hour drive, we were at Red Rock Crossing, looking at Cathedral Rock, the most photographed place in Sedona. It was a beautiful 85 degrees and there wasn't a cloud in sight.

Hats, check. Sunglasses, check. UV protection swim shirts, check.

Now heading to a creek that has moving water which ends in a deep pool with 6 kids in tow, all of whom are age 7 and under, may be a bit nerve wracking.  That's why you stick them all in their life vests.

Not that they'll keep the life vest on the whole time, or their clothes for that matter,
but its all good. We've got three pairs of adult eyes and lots and lots of sunscreen.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

It's Not a Big Deal

I have a business appointment tomorrow about a future class.  Flyers to print. A few signed songs to perfect. A small folding table to pick up. A crabby, sick baby. A dirty kitchen floor as well as a growing pile of laundry. And I haven't made it into the shower yet and it's already after lunch.

Needless to say, I don't feel like getting to the floor or the laundry.  I want to be ready for Saturday's Early Childhood Fair in which I will have a booth for my Little Hand's Sign business and for which (to be perfectly honest) I am stressing a tad over.

To top it all off, Aubrey had her nose in a comic book and left her open-faced peanut butter honey sandwich on the floor. After I told her to pick it up. When Donovan stepped right in it and continued walking across the whole kitchen floor, I couldn't help but raise my voice.
"Aubrey, this is exactly why I told you to not leave your sandwich on the floor! Now look at this mess!"

And then Brant, my uncharacteristic little three year old, calmly and practically piped up, "It's not a big deal Mom."

He took me by surprise. When I realized that my three year old was instructing me, the parent, I fought to hold back my laughter and said, "You're right. It's not a big deal. Thank you for pointing that out."

"If you can wipe it up, its not a big deal." reiterated Brant.

Okay. Gotcha. Message taken. Thanks for the reminder. Mom needs to chill.
You are a gem, Brant. And you just made your mother's day.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


While Disneyland is supposed to be the funnest place on Earth, and is the most popular theme park, we decided to take our kids to Legoland on Spring Break.  I don't regret it one bit.
 This park was perfect for us. Connor, 7 years old, through Brant, 3, were all well entertained.  In fact, had we waited a few years to come here, Connor might have been getting a bit too old.

Although the park is not open as long as Disneyland, it still worked fine for us.  When you are travelling with small children, who wants to get to the park before 10:00 and stay much later than 5:00 anyway?  We also noticed that Legoland has a more mellow vibe than Disneyland. The music wasn't as loud or crazy, and the park was full of families with young children. In other words, perfect.
The kids loved riding their own cars and earning a 'driver's license' (no pictures as my sister and I were at the play ground with our two little ones). The roller coasters were another highlight of the day.  I never would have guessed it of my three-year old, but he whooped and laughed the entire time on the Dino roller coaster.

While I look forward to experiencing Disneyland through my kids' eyes some day, I have to say that Legoland did not disappoint and it was the perfect choice for us this year.