Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Fun Easter Decorations with Kids.



I bet your kids are like mine. Ready for it to be warm. We've had a few beautiful days and have enjoyed open windows and a bit of time outside but those days are snuggled up with rainy days as well. Just last week we spent hours outside only to spend a couple days watching rain.

Now, I have 3 little girls, 2 of which are in school (1 full day, 1 half day). Last week on our rainy day, I pulled out these super cute Easter window clings for my 3 & 5 year old to play with.  |I did pick up these window clings at a discount in exchange for my review. All opinions I share are my own.|





















Let's just say they loved it. I gave my girls just 3 sheets to play with and have a handful more that I plan on bringing out over the next couple weeks, as I let them decorate different windows for Easter. My 3 year old did have a bit of a harder time peeling the stickers off the paper but, sticking them on the window and moving them around was a piece of cake.

They couldn't wait for their sister or their dad to get home so they could show off what they did. The window clings have stayed on my window for about a week now and haven't fallen down. My girls have rearranged them a few times and they still look great. I'm actually really glad that I picked these up for them. Honestly, I wasn't sure if they would like them. I've never used window clings before, and they seemed like a quick activity but, my girls took their time with them and really enjoyed it.

What types of Easter or Spring activities have you done with your kids this year? I'm looking for some more ideas, we'll are about 3 days away from Spring Break here & we would absolutely love to get some new ideas.



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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Moments.


"And one on the way! These are the best days of your life." Just a simple 13 words spoken to me as I pushed my 3 year old through the grocery store. Little did that elderly gentleman know that, I truly believe those words. 




33 weeks pregnant with our fourth daughter and I'm still amazed by each day and each moment I have with my daughters. It was only 9 years ago that our journey to grow our family started. Married for 2 years but, feeling the need to start a family strongly. Something telling me that it wasn't going to be the easiest journey for us. 

I was right, almost 2 years is what it took to finally get the "positive" we we had been praying for. Those moments are hidden back in posts that I have long forgotten about but, the pain still feels fresh. 7 years ago we continued our journey, this time with new obstacles, but a bit more hope of giving our sweet girl a sibling. A year and a half and another morning sickness filled pregnancy brought her the sister we'd been waiting on. 

Baby number 3 was different. We knew the routine and were more relaxed through the journey. This trip was shorter, the pregnancy just as full of morning sickness but worth every moment, when we had our sweet nearly Christmas baby join us. For a couple years it felt like our family was where it needed to be. Sometimes I quietly wondered if that was it for us, if I felt like my family was finally done growing? 

Once I thought I could say it out loud, I found myself quickly corrected. This wasn't right, my family wasn't complete, I couldn't just move on and push this feeling away. So again we found ourselves on maybe our most difficult journey. The twists and turns this time hurt in an entirely new way. I wanted to give up, didn't think I could keep going, but knew that I couldn't give up hope on this baby. Sure enough, many months & tears later we the "positive" was finally ours. 

Seeing baby number 4's heartbeat at my first ultrasound absolutely made every moment of this journey to conceive worth it. During a trip to the ER just past 12 weeks I was oddly calm, just having this feeling that our sweet baby would be fine. Jump to 16 weeks, when doctor was surprised that baby number 4 was another girl, our fourth. There wasn't an ounce of sadness to be found from me. My baby was growing and healthy and she was going to be perfect just like her sisters.

This pregnancy has been a different whirlwind, but nonetheless amazing. I go to bed and wake up with 3 sweet girls wanting to curl up and talk to baby. I have a wonderful husband, who has made sure he has kept us financially supported so I am able to stay home and raise our daughters. I've been there for everything with them. I've witnessed every first. I am the first one they see in the morning and the last one to steal a kiss at night. 

My days might be hard at times, each one comes with a different struggle, but I wouldn't change any of it. I learn from the constantly. They make me a better, stronger person. These really are the best days of my life, and I know they're only about to get better.


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Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Distractions. Hopes. Goal.

*I've tried like 5 times to get the font larger, and it's not working so bear with me.*

I'm not one to sit down and write out goals, even at the start of the new year. I tried choosing a word for the year one time and totally forgot about it. This year isn't going to be any different & I'm fine with that. Last year I learned a lot about myself and I'm happy with it. 

I do have a list of hopes.

I hope to continue to step out of my comfort zone.
I hope to teach my girls new things, even if they are just simple around the house jobs.
I hope my marriage continues on this beautiful path it's taken lately.
I hope to learn a new thing or two.
I hope to take more adventures. 
I hope to sit down & make my blog grow again. 

Why just hopes and not goals? I don't know, just feels like it flows better for me. I like to stop thinking about my "goal" or "hope" and just be. I feel I grow better and my life has more beauty when I just let it be. Just go with the flow and make the changes I need as I see them.

 I sound crazy I know, but there's something about just being in the moment that I need. I've never been that way and the more I get to know myself the more I find that's what needs to happen. Just to be. Just to let life be my distraction. Get distracted by my girls laughing. Watch them play. Get lost listening to my husband and his goals. Just be there. Hmm... maybe I've found my goal.

Are you one for making goals?


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Monday, December 19, 2016

Lip Color.

This post is for all my makeup lovers!
Can your lip color do this?




I bet it can't! This was just under an hour after it was applied, but it does this right away also. In this video I'm wearing LipSense in Peach, topped with Glossy Gloss. If you haven't heard of LipSense yet let me tell you, it is awesome!

LipSense is unlike any conventional lipstick, stain or color. It is a long-lasting lip color, it sets in place,  is waterproof, does not kiss-off, smear-off, rub-off or budge-off for up to 18 hours! There are over 70 gorgeous shades! Nudes and neutrals, bold pops of pinks, purples, browns and reds. One of my favorite parts is that you can layer the colors to make your own unique lip color! How awesome is that! If you have questions feel free to post them down in the comments! 

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Addiction.

 I've always been addicted to buying books. So is my husband, makes for shelves full of books here. I tend to follow people on Goodreads and steal their favorite books.

     

Lately I've been into picking up cook books mostly. I've recently picked up:

Skinny Suppers: 125 Lightened-Up, Healthier Meals for Your Family by Brooke Griffin

Skinnytaste Fast & Slow: Knockout Quick-Fix & Slow Cooker Recipes by Gina Homolka
The Skinnytaste Cookbook: Light on Calories, Big on Flavor by Gina Homolka
And let me tell you! I'm in love! I can't wait to try more, I've filled this entire week with recipes from them! I can't wait to let you know how everything went! I'm still looking for more recommendations on good cookbooks or blogs to follow! Leave your favorites below!


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Monday, December 5, 2016

Ready... or not??

I just sat there with a pen and notebook next to me. The only notebook in our house that had more than a couple empty pages.  Purple ink (because its a favorite color around here) covers one page full of school information for my big Kindergartner. How were we there already?

Typical mom thought right? I've seen post after post about "their First Day", and how "I cried in the car", not realizing how fast our big moment is approaching. In August my oldest started Kindergarten. I was ready. Not in the typical "they are driving me crazy" or "I'm so ready to have time without them" type way. There were a lot of big changes happening in our life.

Our Kindergartner started school with kids she's never seen before, not even one was a familiar face. There wasn't a neighborhood carpool, or the excitement of seeing a neighbor/church friend in class- at least not at first.

Just weeks after our 5 year old started school we packed up our first home and moved to our next step. Though we didn't move very far, just to the next city over, and only a couple main roads our lives changed.

We closed one chapter and started another. And that is why I was ready for my oldest to go to Kindergarten.



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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Farmhouse Love

It's about time I sit down and get started on updating you on my life! Guess what! I moved! In June we found a home that we loved and within a month sold our very first home and by the end of September we were in our brand new home! 


It's been a wild ride & I can't wait to share more with you! There were so many things we learned and so many new experiences we had. And of course you need a tour of the new place! 

We're going with a farmhouse type theme! (Obviously, right?) I spend SO much time on Pinterest & am starting to get some decor ideas there! 


What styles are you loving right now?



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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

What's cookin?

Oh the changes that have been happening in my life! I can't wait to share with all of you! We were hit with snow on Monday! So much fun! All this cold weather has me wanting big warm meals to enjoy at the end of the day. We're kind of in this whole health kick right now at my house. (More on that another day!) I just have to share with you some of the yummy meals we've been making this week!



Sunday: Fajitas
 (We cook everything like the recipe says for the chicken 
burrito bowls then use it to make fajitas instead!)

Monday: Turkey Meatloaf,
 roasted sweet potato, mixed veggies

Tuesday: Chicken Parm
roasted spaghetti squash, Marinara Sauce, peas & garlic knots

Wednesday: Fish, brown rice, mixed veggies

 maybe some rolls?

Friday: Buffalo Chicken over roasted Sweet potatoes
(We use the buffalo chicken sauce from this post
 and just use a bit of ranch dressing)

Saturday: Chicken Cordon Bleu, brown rice, green beans

So now that you know what I'm cooking, what are you cooking?



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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

New. New. New. {Wrap Review Included}

New baby. New routine. Crazy house. Routine managed. Cool down.
I'll echo the other bloggers out there, babies make life crazy and when life is crazy the blog is pushed away. Not that I haven't been thinking about it. I have posts falling out of my ears over here!

Baby is 5 months old. Darn near 6 months old. So many catch up posts to do. Also, we hit up Disneyland in March. That is a monster post (or posts) of it's own. Baby was 2 1/2 months old. Yes, we took a 5 year old, 2 year old and 2 1/2 month old to Disneyland and we survived! 

Baby ended up being carried most of the trip but hey, totally worth it. I bought a wrap to carry her in and she hated it. I hated it. It was bad. About a month after we got back, I got the Wrapy.

A nice stretchy, fabric wrap. Don't let it look intimidating, it really is super easy to use. Just give it one practice try and then the next time you're good! Below is a picture of my sweet 2 year old giving it a try. 



She is about 25lbs, I don't remember off hand what the weight limit is but she was absolutely a perfect fit. I had my brother help me put her in the first time around just to make sure it was secure before baby was set in for a try. Hands free toddler wearing? Yes please. She loved it. Though after a bit of housework attached to mom she was ready to be free to run. But seriously guys, look at that. 25lbs, hands free. 

Yes I did put baby in, I'm not sure where those pictures ran off too, but I'm sure they'll pop up in a baby post update. Now before I forget, this is darn near the same wrap as another (more expensive) I previously had. More expensive doesn't necessarily mean it's better. 

My two littles and my Kindergartener and I definitely approve of this wrap. We've used it so often lately that I actually forgot it was given to me for my honest review. I mean it just feels like it's been with us forever. Isn't that what you want?  There isn't anything negative to say here. It fits great, instructions are easy to use. It fits back into the bag easily. It's fairly breathable considering it's a large amount of fabric. 

For those of you that are interested in getting one for yourself (or like me, buying one as a baby shower gift) I have some coupon codes to get you 15% off. Head on over and check them out. You won't be disappointed. I definitely wasn't.



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Monday, January 25, 2016

One Month.

I can't believe our sweet baby joined our family a month ago already. At her 5 day Well Child Check she weighed 7 lbs, exactly what she left the hospital weighing. 


At her 2 Week Well Child Check she weighed 7 lbs 5 ounces and grew to 21.4 inches tall! She also did great during her heel prick, and proved that she's a great bleeder just like her mama. Thank goodness for hydrogen peroxide, and it's great job at making our clothes blood free.


She's been a great nighttime sleeper, she will give us a 5- 6 1/2 hour chunk of sleep every night then another 3-4 hour chunk. It's perfect. If only her 2 1/2 year old sister would do the same. (We're dealing with some separation anxiety for sure.)

She is constantly being kissed and loved by her big sisters who want to help with her and hold her any chance they get. She is still so very sweet and loves to just look you in the eyes and listen to you. She's a very smiley little girl and is often caught giggling in her sleep. 



I don't remember time going this fast with my first two, but it is for sure flying with her. 


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Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Baby #3: {Birth Story}

I love reading birth stories and love knowing that I have my girls' written down. Here is Baby #3's birth story.

Let's start with how surprised I was to wake up December 23rd still pregnant. It was the furthest I'd ever been. My first born at 39 weeks- my water broke at 38 weeks 6 days. My second born at 38 weeks 4 days- again my water broke. I thought- and so did my doctor- that baby number 3 would come around the same time. 



 At 39 weeks 1 day I was walking into the hospital to be induced. At 7:10 am an IV was started and I was dilated to a 2 still. 


At 7:25 they went ahead and started Pitocin. At 8am my doctor finally made it over (later than he thought, we had a wonderful storm that morning that slowed everyone down). He then broke my water and said I was 3cm, 40% and baby moved to a -1 station while he was checking. He guessed baby would be here around 2 or 3 that afternoon. He also said he would be back at 12 pm to check on us. 

I was able to make it till 8:50 before getting an epidural. After that I didn't get checked again till 11 am. At that point I was at a 6. My husband asked the nurse how fast things could happen from there and she told him "sometimes it takes 10 minutes to go from a 6 to a 10 and sometimes a few hours." Well at 11:40 I started to feel a bunch of pressure and sure enough when the nurse came in, it was time to go! 


The doctor arrived at 12 and after 3 pushes our sweet little girl joined our family at 12:10 pm.

She weighed 7lbs 2 oz and was 20.5" long. Since the birth of my second daughter the hospital had changed a few things and baby got to stay in the room with me the whole time. She left twice in our whole stay and it was wonderful. I never got the chance to attempt nursing my first two until a while after they were born so being able to try right away was a new, and great experience. She came out knowing what to do and ready to do it! 



We were moved to our recovery room a couple hours later and after her bath (in our room!) and after the feeling returned to my legs our sweet big girls got to meet their new baby sister. It was amazing. She did have a hard time keeping and was dealing with some jaundice (Combs problems- her blood type and my blood type are different and her body was having a hard time passing the bilirubin as fast as her body was breaking down the blood cells.) that threatened to keep us in the hospital through Christmas, but over night and with lots of cuddles and some time in front of the sun filled window all her little problems disappeared. 



So on Christmas Eve, we traveled home as a family of 5, read The Night Before Christmas and snuggled in and waited for Santa. 

It was absolutely amazing and such a great start to our Christmas. This sweet miracle baby has changed our family so much in such a short time. She has been so very sweet since day 1. She is the perfect mixture of her sisters & we are so very blessed to have her here with us.


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Thursday, December 3, 2015

{Our Elf} Snowflake.

I knew the end of this year would be crazy. All the holidays and then throw in a new baby due to come December 29th (inducing on the 23rd though!). I was so worried that I would forget something. I've been making list after list for months. And finally last week I made our Elf on the Shelf list. I kept it pretty simple. I wanted to make sure whoever had to do it while I was away at the hospital with baby wouldn't hate me. 

I know there are TONS of list around and I'm not saying mine is the best but I did want to share my ideas with you. Now I numbered mine but plan on doing whatever I feel we need most that day, but wanted to make sure I had Snowflake's adventures all planned. 

1. I'm Back letter! 
2. Hide in the Christmas Tree. 
3. Bring a Christmas Coloring page.
4. Elf plays candy cane golf. (Candy canes & marshmallows)
5. Elf puts googly eyes on pictures.
6. Elf brings or suggests we watch a Christmas movie as a family.
7. Elf brings Christmas stickers!
8. Brown paper bag races with other dolls/stuffed animals.
9. Hangs from dining room light with snowflakes.
10. Brings sugar cookie mix, frosting and cookie cutters.
11.Sleeps in dollhouse bed on kitchen counter.
12. Elf hides in the stocking.
13. Brings food coloring for green pancakes!
14. Elf brings stuff to make snowflakes!
15. Brings money to buy present for baby sister!
16. Elf hangs from coat hooks in the girls' room.
17. Elf gets trapped under a cup.
18. Elf is fishing for gold fish crackers.
19. Elf is hiding in the cookie jar.
20. Elf brings stuff for a gingerbread house!
21. Brings hot cocoa and popcorn for a movie night!
22. Elf brings a new Christmas book.
23. Brings stuff to make reindeer food!
24. Christmas Pajamas and a good by letter.

Extras-

Bubble bath with mini marshmallows.
Brings stuff for bubble bath for the girls.
Makes a snow angel with powdered sugar on table.
Draws a map on chalkboard table to play with cars on.



Do you do Elf on the Shelf? What is your Elf's name? Have any fun ideas?

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Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Conducting Helps.

Thank goodness for YouTube. Seriously. In November I was released as a Primary teacher in our ward and was quickly asked to conduct the music in Relief Society. I made a quick decision and said yes- even though I am growing to have a love/hate relationship with it.

I took piano lessons for a brief time when I was younger which have proved to be a very small help but it still didn't prepare me for this. Counting and figuring out the odds and ends have been hard for me. It has taken me a bit to find these awesome resources and in the off chance that I can help someone else I want to share a few of my favorite finds! 

Lds.Org Helps

Using the Hymn Book.
I feel like this is pretty much what you find in the back of the Hymn book, the stuff you stared at while you were a child, thinking you could totally do it too. Helpful but not quite all you need to know. I'd use it more as a refresher if you've done this before and just need to be reminded. Or if you're like me- flip between this and the Hymn you're about to conduct 400 times to make sure you've got it right. 

Conducting Course.
105 pages of good information but not quite all that I needed. I still needed more, I had a hard time getting through this, I felt like it needed to be a video course instead so I could work while watching someone. I tend to second guess myself and this didn't have enough for me.

Hymns.
I am so very lucky to know ahead of time what songs we'll be singing so I can practice conducting them beforehand. I use this online hymn book to help me practice.

YouTube Helps

How to Conduct Music- Michelle Willis
10 short videos that really break down the basics. Super helpful to watch, she's calm, clear and just overall really great at teaching. I felt so much more confident after watching her videos. The very first week I had to conduct I felt it was doable and even though I didn't quite do very well I survived and felt that with practice I would survive this calling. 


How to Conduct Hymn #211- David Potter
6 Hymns-How to Conduct
This hymn has been driving me crazy for 2 weeks now. It has to be the toughest one I've been asked to conduct (my 3rd song ever). So luckily I was able to find this man & his wife teaching you how to conduct it. It looks like they have a few other videos of specific hymns. Best day ever when I found this. 


Now I'm still just learning and still probably need years of practice but just by finding these few places I finally feel like I'm right on track to actually learning how to conduct some of these hymns. Now to get over the fear of being in front of people. Thankfully no one seems to stare while you conduct and I just watch the hymn book anyway. 

Hopefully if you stopped in for help you got it. If you didn't come in for help hopefully you learned a little!



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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Hump-day Confessions.

I confess that:

5/7  Days a week I wear some sort of pajama bottom all day. (This belly is making it more and more uncomfortable to wear regular pants, even with a belly band.

Lately only half of my house seems to be clean at a time. Either the back half (bedrooms/playroom) or the front half (living, dining and kitchen). 

I sleep in till at least 8 most days- my girls sleep until 9 or 10 most days, so we stay very lazy during the morning. 

I've read more books in the last couple months than I had in the first 8 months of this year. Thank goodness for Goodreads.

Whenever I start to get back into blogging I look for great link-ups like this one to help me find my way. 

Alanna & Company


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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

{Review} Fresh Delicates Laundry Bags.


Wardrobe changes are no joke at my house. I can honestly say my 2 yr old changes at least 4 times during the day just to fit her mood. My 4 yr old probably changes twice, an outfit for the day and pajamas for the night. Just between the two of them that 6 outfits every single day. I feel like I am constantly doing laundry. [Because I am!] I try and keep loads small so they wash fast or quite large so I'm doing less loads. [Basement laundry rooms suck sometimes!]

This past laundry filled week I was able to give the Fresh Delicates Laundry Bags a try. Now I've personally never tried using laundry bags before. 



These bags are supposed to:


-Keep clothes in tact while in the washer or dryer
-Zipper strap will help avoid any loud noise to be made
-Help prevent missing socks!

You are able to wash your clothes in the bag and just move the bag straight to the dryer.

What are the bags made of? Fine mesh, that has a good density and they are soft! 

What sizes? They come in Three sizes 30*40cm, 40*50cm, 50*60cm

So what did I think? I might actually really like these bags. I still have more laundry to do with them so we'll see how they hold up. I tried all 3 sizes with several different loads. First off, read the instructions and only fill them up to 3/4 full. I failed to do so and my laundry didn't dry too well. Next time I forgot to zip it tight and ended up just washing the bag and laundry as separate pieces. 

Third time I actually had it filled right and zipped up tight and it worked wonderfully! These bags were great for keeping our laundry separate. I try and keep my husband and my clothes separate from my girls' or from my sisters and that usually means that I have to do separate loads but these bags made it so I could take two small loads and combine them into one larger load. It was so great to have one less trip to the laundry room. Overall so far I definitely recommend these bags. They are making my life easier one laundry trip at a time. I did get these in exchange for my honest opinion- and don't worry I only share my honest opinion. 





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