Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Littles can memorize Scripture too

We feel it's so so important for God's Word to be written on our hearts and to get our kids in the habit of memorizing it while they're young. AND to know memorizing God's Word is rewarding! The reward, of course, is eternal. To help Lilleigh grasp this though I did offer a tangible reward - getting to go see the Snoopy movie!

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Gratitude lately

This post is long overdue, so I'll just say that God is good. I am so grateful. 

I'm grateful for this sweet angel and Minnie Mouse. 

For birthday celebrations.

For awesome weather (on my birthday - holla!) and zoo days.

For sweet community group girls.

And all of our kiddos.

For visits from my dad. And that sweet little one in between us.

For weddings and forever friends.

For my forever wedding date.

For Bucees hats and car shopping carts.

For little helpers. 

For memories repeating themselves.

For getting together with college friends.

For cousins playing.

For siblings.

For clean bathrooms and the beaver.

For two forward-facing girlies.

For a handy hubby and this awesome homeschool/ kid craft table he made.

For date nights and babysitters.

Life is a whole lot more fun when you remember your blessings. I'm counting mine! 


Monday, October 19, 2015

Gorgeous fall

These last few weeks we have been taking advantage of this amazing weather that has captured the metroplex! The docket has been full and keeping us super busy - because we all know this weather doesn't last long! 

Lilleigh has been begging for months to ride on the Dart, which is our city's public transportation system. She specifically wanted to ride the light rail. So a couple weekends ago Brendon and I loaded up our girls and rode the Dart from our local light rail station (just a few miles from us) all the way downtown. 

Adeline thought the train was a little loud. 

Once downtown, we walked a block and hopped onto the trolley, which is always free, and took it to Klyde Warren park. Klyde Warren is this genius of a park located in the middle of downtown Dallas. It's located on top of the freeway. There's always lots going on - everything from a kiddie playground to an open lawn with live music and even yoga to food trucks lining the park. An all-around awesome place.

While this isn't a great picture, it's the best I have that captures the actual park.

Also exciting - Anabelle showed up at my house this weekend. Actually she showed up in my room as I was napping. Brendon said he walked into the living room and saw her standing there. Cree-py. But also awesome. Best surprise ever! It had been a rough couple days, and God knew I needed a surprise visit from my sissy! 

Lilleigh loved having Anabelle here too. She was immediately put to work pulling Anabelle around in her chariot! 

We had planned to go camping this weekend, but the campsites we wanted to go to were full. And truly we didn't care for a 2-hour road trip. So we came up with plan B... A backyard camp out! 

We may have all ended up in our beds. Because why be on a cot or the ground if you don't have to be? (Actually Lilleigh would've preferred to stay outside...) 

But as good campers do, we continued on the next morning as if we had stayed outside all night. A yummy campfire breakfast of pancakes was served by my awesome Eagle Scout hubby. The girls are already asking when we can camp in the backyard again!

Oh we've also been doing tons of outdoor crafts. Tons of painting, woodworking, and other DIY projects! Today I finished painting some signs, and Lilleigh helped me with our front porch decor! 

Next up - pumpkin carving!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Our girlies

These two girls keep their Mommy and Daddy so busy! In the very best way.

Lilleigh has started to stay up listening to audiobooks, reading books, or quietly hanging out with me during rest time. As long as she's quiet and has some time to herself (and Mommy has time to herself), I'm good with it. And for those of you wondering, she has been going to bed easier! I don't think it's solely just the rest hour thing though. I think it's also a combination of: the novelty of having little sis in her room has worn off; Adeline is in her trundle rather than sharing the big bed; and we started to be more firm on bedtime. So it's probably the perfect combo. Either way, bedtime has become easier. Does Lil still sing herself to sleep? Sometimes. :) Adeline is used to it.

Lilleigh's answers questions, answers, and stories keep me laughing. The other day I overheard her talking to her friend.
Friend: What's your Mommy's name?
Lil: Ashleigh.
Friend: What's your Daddy's name?
Lil: B-Bear.
{Of course, I was dying laughing in the other room. I texted Brendon and relayed to him the convo immediately.}

Lilleigh is the known question asker in the house. And Adeline has picked up on this. Lots of "why? why?" I really don't think it occurs to her to ask a question, so much as it is just fun to do whatever big sis does. And big sis asks questions, so little sis needs to follow suit.

Adeline is so very active. She's learned that in order to make the tricycle move, she needs to pedal. She is still hit or miss with how successful her pedaling is, but either way, I'm amazed she's figured it out! She is definitely a coordinated girly!

The other day as I was changing her diaper (potty training = a failed attempt... more on that later), she started kicking. I told her very firmly not to kick me, but that if she wanted to kick something that she could go outside and kick the ball when I was finished. Sure enough, a few minutes later she was out in the front yard swinging her foot in the air trying to kick the ball on the ground.

And you can't push Adeline too high on the swing or too fast on her ride on toys. We have yet to reach her limit.

I think I mentioned the potty training not going so swell before. Well, I've given up for the moment. Sometimes when we are at home, if she wants to wear panties, I let her. But I don't have high expectations. I do think developmentally she may not be there, but I also think her resistance has kicked in. I do wonder how she would have done had we started this in May when she originally expressed interest. But oh well. I'm betting this winter she will get back on the bandwagon. One can hope!

Last story for the day and then I'm off to nap while the house is quiet and everyone is "resting." About a month ago, we were getting ready to leave, and I was letting the girls play on the front steps and the walkway while I packed up the car. I opened the car door to let them get in their seats while I ran back inside for a sweater. That was all of 20 seconds. Max. No sooner had I grabbed the sweater than I heard Adeline crying hysterically. I ran outside to see exactly what I feared. Lilleigh had shut the van door on Adeline's hand. It was a total accident of course, though it was definitely sparked by a determination to keep little sis from stealing her seat. Thankfully Adeline was just fine. (I did call a nurse friend and our pediatrician to be sure.) Thankfully this story does have a redeeming moment for sweet Lil.

We continued on our way to the Nest, a moms event where I serve at our church. I checked the girls into childcare ("Training Ground") and went on my way. I did send Adeline with an ice pack and warned them that she may be off today after the morning's events. Adeline was having a hard time (aka she wouldn't stop crying), so one of the sweet teachers (who also babysits for us and knows our family well) went and got Lilleigh out of her class and brought her to Addie's, to help calm her down. And lo and behold, it worked! Lilleigh said Adeline just calmed right down and sat in Lilleigh's lap. She stayed in the class a bit to play with Addie and help her adjust, before returning to her class.

Love those sweet girlies! 

Monday, October 5, 2015

So we went camping with kids

For anyone who knows me, you know I hate being crazy busy, yet I have a tendency to become that way. It makes me crazy. Any who, this weekend was super busy, but in the best possible way! We totally crashed last night, and the girls are still asleep. Actually hubby is too...

On Saturday morning, Brendon took the girls to the local art festival, while I held a garage sale with a couple friends. A reason for Starbucks. Good. Decluttering. Good. Extra money. Also good. Then that afternoon Brendon and I loaded up our crew to go meet some of our favorite friends, the wonderful Widemans, to go camping! 

Lilleigh and Adeline were actually awesome campers. I'm not sure I should be surprised. Lilleigh is older and is just glad to do anything with our family - and with her sweet friend McKinley! And Adeline just loves being outdoors and doing anything big sister does! 

For the record, Sammy did actually sleep on the foocot with Lilleigh ALL night, which you would think was Lilleigh's dream come true, since she always asks for Sammy to sleep with her. But by morning, she was telling Sammy to get off her bed!

The next morning while the girls waited for breakfast, I put them to work doing nature drawings. We got a little homeschool in. Their nature drawings may have been of them roasting marshmallows by the fire with fairies, but whatevs. ;)

My Eagle scout hubby especially loved the cooking portion of this trip because he got to test out some of his new camping gear. And because experimental baking and cooking is his thing. Yummy blueberry lemon scones for breakfast, yes please.

After breakfast we went hiking. Adeline walked some, but Momma carried her most of the way, which I'm sure will make my muscles feel awesome later today.

Lake Texoma has awesome trails and also beautiful beaches, some rocky and some sandy. The girls loved it. Matt and McKinley almost gave Randi a heart attack scaling a cliff, but everyone is safe and sound!

Even Sammy and Trigger made friends. I needed to capture the moment, since we know Sammy does not often make friends when she is with her people. Guarding us is a very serious job. Trigger was in heaven.

Seriously such a wonderful and super exhausting weekend! We had the best weather and company!

I was asked advice for camping with kids. Since I'm such a pro, I certainly am the best one to answer this. However, with my two time kid camping experience, I will say knowing your kids is key, as is bravery. We knew Lilleigh would be fine, since she had been before and is pretty happy to go with any fun excursion. Adeline loves outdoors, so the only concern was sleeping. We went for it anyway, and she rocked it.

S'mores and yummy food are a given.

I would also say to make cozy beds and make sure you have a sound machine app, if your kids normally sleep with white/ pink noise.

Lastly, talk it up beforehand! Adeline talked about camping and her foocot for days before we left!

We may just try to squeeze in another camping trip soon! It's hard to think about right now, with sore muscles and lots of laundry, but I think we could do it...

Monday, September 28, 2015

Homeschool lately

Some days our homeschooling looks like a field trip to The Heard to see animals and nature up close. 

And some days it looks like giving into Lilleigh's itch to learn to sew and wash dishes. 

Carole Joy Seid says, "Give them {real} tools, not toys." She also says, "Put in the hard work when they're young {teaching them to do chores, even if it seems too hard}, and they'll serve you when they're older." Done and done. Lilleigh will be getting sewing supplies and a scrub brush for Christmas. And she will love it. 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Adeline is TWOodles

Adeline is TWO! I can hardly believe it's been two years since she entered our family. I can't imagine our family without her. She brings so much spunk, energy, and laughter!

One single word to describe Adeline: Determined. She is always on the go. She gets her mind set on something and doesn't veer from the task at hand, which many times results in temper tantrums or discipline. She will be warned against a behavior (say, kicking) and then give me a look of testing and do it again. She's bold. It doesn't work for her, but one day she will figure that out. She certainly does keep me on my toes though.

This determination can be a great thing too. It worked out great for day 3 of potty training when she was set on getting as many jelly beans (for going in the potty) as possible. Since then though, the jelly beans don't seem to be as motivating, so her focus has moved on. Oy. Mommy needs to come up with better incentives. Anyone have some that don't involve candy?

The next word on my list for her is courageous. I often watch her do things and think, "Lilleigh would never have done that at her age." She constantly climbing and jumping. She loves to swing high not he swings (big girl swings, not bucket seats), and we have yet to find her limit on "how high."

Until this week, I've been referring to her as "Mini Adeline" because she's consistently been at 5th to 10th percentiles for weight and height. However, it appears she's been growing! At her well visit this week, her weight was consistent, but she measured in the 50th percentile for height! I'll be honest that  have my doubts on the accuracy of measuring a child on a piece of paper as that lay down, crying, but still it's probably somewhere in that area. She's a growing girl! That said, she does still have little feet... a size 5. For reference, I think Lilleigh was a 7 around this age, maybe an 8... So maybe Adeline is still destined to be short like her momma. Time will tell!

Some random things about Adeline...

  • She loves her blanket and will carry it anywhere I let her. 
  • At the moment, her favorite things to point out (in books, on signs, anywhere) is Mickey Mouse and the moon.
  • Adeline has picked up colors, and mostly on her own. I have started pointing out different colors lately, but one day recently she just started pointing out everything pink! And then blue. 
  • She loves Minnie Mouse and would wear her Minnie dress everyday if I let her. We do have to break for wash.
  • She loves pizza and anything sugary. She also loves frozen blueberries, which is funny since that was my main (and maybe only) craving when I was pregnant with her. 
  • She jumps (or tries), runs, climbs, bounces, kicks her legs in the pool. I think she is going to be pretty coordinated.
  • This girl hurts herself constantly. Her current bruises and scrapes include: a couple on the knees from falling while running, a scrape on the shoulder from walking off a bench seat at Shady's, some bruising from falling while climbing a very low-lying tree next door, a bruised and scraped pinkie finger from the "helping tower" falling on her, a head bonk from tumbling down our front steps, and another bonk from when she randomly bumped her forehead into the arm of the chair at the pediatrician's office. That's all in the last two weeks! I wouldn't say she's clumsy... she's two. But she is very courageous (there it is) and determined (oh another one) and finds something fun to do and just jumps in without surveying the consequences of what could happen. I actually love this about her. This is such a great trait if we can harvest it appropriately. And some day I pray it won't result in so many scrapes and bruises. :)
  • Oh and speaking of scrapes and such, her determination also seems to keep her from dwelling on her injuries. Many times I can get her to pick herself back up and say, "I'm okay." There are definitely many times where there's heavy crying or tears, but she's usually over it within a matter of minutes. Seriously amazing. 
  • Adeline loves to do anything big sister does. This summer has really been the first time the girls have been separated some, where we have dropped off Lilleigh solo somewhere - Vacation Bible School, birthday parties, play dates. And oh my word, Adeline has been DEVASTATED. Tears. And constantly asking, "Where'd Sissy go?" Break my heart. I pray constantly that these two would have the sweetest friendship and always be best friends. The closeness of family is one of the things I am looking forward to most about homeschooling - just being able to spend so much time together and really build that friendship between them and hopefully future siblings too.
Here are some photos of Adeline lately. I'm also including some from her "Minne Addie is TWOodles" Popsicles in the Park birthday party!

Don't you love those pig tails?

This was at Costco. The girls picked out their own matching outfits this day. And then in the cart, Lilleigh kept turning to Adeline and saying, "You're my best buddy, right?" To which Adeline would shout "Yeah!" Melt my heart.

At the party. It appears she did get put in the bucket swing this day. As long as she is swinging, she's happy!

It's true. We had cone cakes.


Our crew.

Singing "Happy Birthday." By this point, we could tell she was spent and didn't feel girl. Poor girl was a little under the weather the rest of the day.

The look of delight when she opened her Minnie Mouse plate on her birthday. I love how excited this made her.

Oh and these keys. They actually look and sound like real keys. An instant favorite.

Happy birthday, Sweet Adeline! You are such a special part of our family. We love you.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Danny and Meredith tied the knot

We recently traveled to Houston to see Meredith (Brendon's sister) get married to Danny! Here are some photos from the big event!

Lilleigh was thrilled to get to go with the bridesmaids to have her nails done! Being a flower girl is a very serious job.

Hubby and me at the rehearsal dinner.

Getting ready on the big day!


Because Lilleigh has this habit of making a terrible fake smile and clenching her teeth, we took some selfies beforehand to practice our "real smiles."

Grammy with the flower girl and ring bearer.

Meredith and Danny's first dance.

Connor and Lilleigh dancing. These two love each other. They never cease of being together, which is amazing to me. Even when we go on week long trips together, these two are joined at the hip constantly.

Glow necklaces at the reception were a big hit among the young 'uns! And here is our family pic of the night. Adeline was even at the wedding briefly, and somehow we missed our opportunity for a photo with her in it! Grr... I'm hoping we can crop a group photo to get one good pic of our little family also!

Me and my fabulous sister-in-law Tarryn. Love her.

Brendon and his brother Ryan, Tarryn's hubby.

Lilleigh and Connor found the photo booth! This was photo 4 on their strip. The top two were blank - they couldn't figure out how to get tall enough to be in the pic! And the third one only had Lilleigh in it! Ha. Finally, though both made the photo!

And oh the glow necklaces!

Congratulations, Danny and Meredith!!