Thursday, January 24, 2013

We Knew the Day Would Come...

We've been told, from the very beginning of this parenting journey, that time goes fast. We were warned. And we've tried to savor... but here it is. 

I just registered Alia for kindergarten.

And as I sat there, listening to the superintendent, and the principal, and the transportation coordinator, and the kindergarten teachers... I had a slight "Are we making the right decision?!" moment!

But then they explained what a typical day looks like, and showed a video of the kids in the classroom... and that smiley JOY started bubbling up!

She's going to love it!! She will thrive... no doubt in my mind!!

Yes, it's going to be hard for me. And yes, some days I'll simply want to hoard her at home and never let her leave... but this slowly letting go thing... is good. It's right. It's what Father has asked us to do! 

 I can't wait to hear about her day, and all the little friends she's going to meet, and the new things she's learning about, and watch her as she picks out her outfits for school.... my oldest is growing up and it is so. fun!

The other night she helped with supper prep by peeling all the potatoes, by herself!

Her artwork is improving and her creativity just blows me away!

And last night she washed ALL the supper dishes, without even so much as a hint from me! She simply started washing (even the big soup pot!) while I cleared the table and before we knew it, we had tag teamed our way to a clean kitchen!!

Then her and I went on a late night grocery store run followed by a french fry stop at Mickey D's. It wasn't a planned "date"... but simply doing life together with my growing up by the minute girl, was a big highlight of my day!

My parents have said it for years... and it's true... each phase just keeps getting better and better!

(But please remind me of that when the tears start flowing as I drop her off at school that first day!!)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Okay... Now Where Were We?

New Year's Eve.... really?!? New Year's Eve?! Yes, I know... my recap has been a bit long and lengthy! Sorry 'bout that for those few of you that are still with me!! We'll be carrying on with our regular scheduled programming after this post, I promise!

My folks were here for New Year's Eve so we decided to head to the bowling alley earlier in the evening... and then had a last minute impromptu party at our house to ring in 2013, which of course I have no pictures of! :)

Bowling... my oh my, every time we go I wonder why we don't go more often!! I love it!! In my dreams I'm some kind of stellar bowler, but in reality my goal is to at least get a higher score than my 4 and 2 year olds! If I cared about scoring than I'd never step foot in a bowling alley again, but because it's so fun regardless... I just swallow my pride and admit, that yes... I am actually as bad as my score might suggest!

Gramma & Grampa with the littlest string bean!

This was Alia's first bowling experience where she was old enough to do it all on her own...

... which was quite sobering for this here mama!

(While she was busy picking out her ball... I was busy praying for no pinched fingers!)

She would just walk up to the lane like she owned the place...

... line up the ball rack thingy, give the ball a shove...

... and then waltz back to join the rest of us! A treat to watch indeed!

Her sister was more interested in climbing on the ball rack thing a mi jig than actually bowling... but it made for fun entertainment too!

Caidrie just took a seat with whoever she was passed off to... as long as she had cuddles she didn't mind!

The girls were "champion bowlers" until the nachos and slurpees came out...

... then their focus changed pretty quick!

My bowling career will NOT be taking off anytime soon, and I still think I should devote a day of my life to actually mastering how to throw the ball STRAIGHT down the lane... but I'll share my top "tip" from our night of bowling...

 Always, ALWAYS bowl on the same lane as the kids... because the bumpers are for "them" after all, no one will suspect a thing!

A really fun evening, for sure!

And yes... for the record my score WAS higher than the children's. Not by much, but I'll take it! (And I'll be taking lessons from my mother... now SHE'S a force to be reckoned with!)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

As You May Have Gathered...

... my folks were out for a visit over Christmas break and it was so nice to simply BE together! Every one of us was either just getting over a cold, had a cold, or were helping take care of those with colds... so the schedule was kept to a minimum, and that was okay!

Poor dad isn't used to being stuck inside so much (and if Jonathan was feeling up to snuff  I have no doubts there would have been lots more "powder play" going on) so taking his little grand girls outside was just what he needed!

First was a little zip around the yard with "raspberry puff" on the snow mobile...

... and then next up was a four wheeler ride with "chocolate cherry". And no I'm not dreaming of pastries... these are Larren's names, trust me! :)

Would have been nice if every one was feeling 100% but there was still lots of fun to be had.

Kid friendly games by day... and on the edge of your seat Euchre tournaments by night! That's how we roll. 

And good luck to whoever has "this remedy has been around for hundreds of years" Jonathan on their team. His concoction of honey and water mixed with LARGE amounts of apple cider vinegar made for a card playing side of him we've never seen before! :) 

And I'll leave you with our theme song for the week, "Little Red"... Grampa made two certain young horse lovers SUPER happy by discovering this little ditty on You Tube. For such an interesting song, it sure does get stuck in your head fast! You've been warned! :)

We Interrupt this (prolonged!) Christmas Recap...

... to inform you that there's been an addition to the family!!! Jon's sister and her husband had a beautiful baby girl, named Katelyn Danae, this past Saturday and we are just so thrilled for them!

Alia joined Jon and I to go see her for the first time...

... and she held that little peanut as if she were her own! 

Katelyn must of known Miss. A was an excited cousin because she did wonderful... all half a dozen times that Alia held her!

Oh the baby dance! 
I haven't done the dance with a fussy newborn in a while... but it sure was a treat, I tell ya!

And if the dancing doesn't work than the curls will! :)

Don't big strong arms look so good holding a baby?!?! :) Jonathan has always had such a tender way with our girls and to see him continue that as an Uncle is such a gift to observe!

Pictures of the new Mommy...

... and the new Daddy...

... compliments of this little photographer!

Katelyn snuggled up and happy with her Daddy!

And that little button nose... it's just asking for kisses, isn't it?!

The lovely family of three!

Katelyn is only a few days old and already I love this girl to pieces!! This is my first "hands on" auntie experience (my other nephews live 15 hours away *sigh*) and oh my gracious, all I can say is this must be a small taste of what it's like to be a grand parent... I'm completely smitten! 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Christmas Twenty Twelve

As I mentioned our Christmas this year was RE-laxed! The only things planned for the day... baked oatmeal for breakfast, open gifts, and head to Jon's grandparents for a supper get together. 

Mommy and Mango sporting their new (homemade... don't look too close!) mei tai wrap!

And the wobble board...

... which was a hit by both the kiddos AND later the adults at the family get together!

The girls went shopping for Jon and did mighty fine in their "making Daddy smile" gifts!

Checking out their new doll house... and you can't really see it due to the bad photographer's composition, but baby sister has already found a way to climb on it!

And sorry, had the camera by the door to take with us to the gathering but due to the 14 others items we were carrying... I forgot it! I need to some how make my camera a permanent, non ackward, fixture on my arm or something... I dunno!


Eager and excited to celebrate Christmas with Gramma and Grampa once they arrived from Ohio!

Flipping through their grandchild memory book of the year... and Larren explaining every page! :)

And at the arrival of Gramma and Grampa the girls once "low budget first home furnishings" doll house quickly got upgraded to "we won the lottery, it's time to deck this whole place out!" If only I could blow up a few of those pieces for my own house, I tell ya! 

If we could have teleported all our beloved family and friends that we didn't get to spend the holidays with, find places for all of them to sleep, have catered meals three times a day, and STILL keep it super relaxed.... then it really would have been the perfect Christmas! :)

Thursday, January 10, 2013


Ann Voskamp and her book One Thousand Gifts have totally changed the way I look at my days. Those little things that have once been overlooked are now what bring joy, grace, laughter, and a change in attitude!

I have been "gifting" now for about 6 months... and I tell you, what a breath of fresh air it has been! My oh my... I've realized how much I missed before! How many times Father has been trying to make me smile and I haven't even noticed.

A tiny glimpse at my gifts from this week...

- The simplicity and deliciousness of puppy chow

- Hot water, bubbles, and a magazine to keep me company

- Those silly blue eyes that tease without saying a word

- A budding young artist

- And the delight over a new pack of markers