Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Oh Girls...

my sweet girls, my 1st set of twins, my Giggle Box, and my Cindy Lou Who.

Tell me little ladies, where has the time gone?

You two keep me busy, that's for sure. With all your mischievous giggling and your funny questions - like the other day when Reese asked, "Geez...how come God put YOU in charge??"

(That's a valid question, by the way.)

Just the other day at the doctors, you pointed at the door on the way out and said, "Look! E-X-I-T, Exit!" As I shuffled around looking for my keys and organizing prescriptions, I looked down and thought, "they are growing so fast!" I watched you take each others hand as we walked to the car, and I had a Mommy Moment.

(You know the ones. Those sweet moments.)

(Those make you forget about your mommys-about-to-lose-it moments, don't they?)

I remember when you started 3yr old preschool...

and then 4yr old preschool...

and now you go to the same school with your big sister...

you're in Kindergarten!

I can't believe it. Luckily you only go a couple days a week, that makes this mama's heart happy.

Now hop in there you smart little loves! Take all your sassiness, humor, and love through those doors and have fun! Make a lot of friends, but stay close together, that's the way you were meant to be. God sent you as a pair, and now off you go to Kindergarten as a pair - embrace that twin connection, it's a gift :).

I love, love, love you, babes. Can't wait to hear all about your exciting school days!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

We Needed This...

a low key weekend...

because life has been toooooo busy...

to just stay at home...

and hang out out back...

we needed to lounge around...

watch a movie...

grill out...

and play with sidewalk chalk...

I needed to soak up my people...

and try to wrap my head around the fact that Reese and Char start Kindergarten tomorrow...how is that even possible!?

It was just good.

We need to do nothing more often :).

Friday, August 26, 2011

The View From Here...

Little Lincoln is a morning person, can you tell??

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Lunchbox Love

All 3 of the girls will eat lunch at school this year. Ella goes all week obviously, and Reese and Charlotte go 2 days (then 3 days the next, and rotate back to 2). And yes, I fully plan on getting some of those weeks mixed up - I can see me calling the school...

"Is Kindergarten today? Or was it yesterday? With Labor Day in there does that mean you add a day? Or take away a day? Did they go 3 days last week or is that not till next week? What is today?? Where am I again??"


So I have been googling "fun lunchbox ideas" the past couple weeks to find some fun stuff to help make packing more fun - cause for some reason the oldest thinks its more fun to buy, and well, mama thinks it is just to expensive over the course of a month and that packing is plain healthier.

Unless you count the York Peppermint Patties...or the Airheads that I put in sometimes. They are family favorites. You gotta splurge sometimes, right? Right.

But honestly, I am really picky about what they eat most of the time, so when I pack I know exactly what they're eating, and that makes me happy.

Controlling, you say? I like to call it very involved.

So I came across some things I thought were easy and worth sharing...

1. This is a no-brainer (is that a word?). I always put a little note in the kids lunchboxes, and when I miss a day, they ask where it was. That right there tells me how much it means to them, and it makes me feel like they still need me even when they are at school :). I just write, "have a great day at school!...learn a lot today!...do your best!' And I always close with, "mommy loves you SO much!"

Sometimes if I have an extra minute I'll get real festive and add a couple stickers. I know, I'm a wild woman.

2. I've changed the game up a bit on the 'ol sandwich. Why not a wrap? The girls love them, they come in a variety of healty kinds, and you can stuff them full of things that are good for them! It's a win-win-win!

3. Another fun thing I found for when I do pack a sandwich is this snazzy idea...

Um seriously, how cute is that sandwich? Even I want one.

It is super easy, and a cheap way to impress the kiddos at lunchtime. You can find the simple directions here.

So those are a few things I'm doing to make a healthy packed lunch more fun. Anyone else have any ideas for fun lunchbox items? I'd love some new ones!

Disclosure - Compensation was provided by Country Crock via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Country Crock.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

It's Time, Baby...

Or should I say, "It's time, my so-grown-up little girl."

I knew school was coming. I knew you were ready to knock 2nd grade out. And I knew you were excited.

What I didn't know is that I would see 7 years flash in front of my eyes as you walked into your classroom, sat down, and waved to your little friends. I felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest.

Wasn't it just yesterday that God gave you to us? And wasn't it a minute ago that you were standing at your 1st birthday doing animal sounds for everyone? Didn't you just start preschool??

(sorry about the quality of the pic, but that was taken on her 1st day of preschool...I had to scan it!)

My mothers voice saying, "before you know it, she'll be in school..." rings so loud in my ears today.

But as I've said, you can't fence time, and 2nd grade is calling. For years, we prayed that God would give us direction for our family, and we believe that He planted us in a great community, with great schools. I have 3 things I want you to know...

- I'm always here...waiting to listen or talk about anything. You can't figure out some of your class work? You don't know why that girl is acting the way she is? Someone hurt your feelings? I'm here. Always.

- You're a special little girl. You're funny, charming, smart, and incredibly loving...embrace it. You know when you asked me yesterday if you should hug your friends that you knew from last year? Yes, people love to be loved on - spread the love, sister.

- And finally, don't just spread your love, spread His love. You're equipped, so keep sharing your faith just like I've heard you do so many times. And when they ask questions, you go on and let your little light shine my sweet girl...thats what He has called us to do, it's a gift to be able to share it!

Alright you savvy little lady, have fun, learn a lot, and stop growing so stinkin' fast!

I love you, my sweet Ella Girl.

It's time, Baby.

(I posted this (almost) exact post this time last year....and the year before that :). I like to add to it as she grows!)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Maybe We Need A Bigger Bed...

A few of you might have seen this pic on our new facebook page, but I had to share it here. Last week I came out of the bathroom after drying my hair and found 5 of my loves laying in our bed watching cartoons...it just melted my heart for some reason...

Every morning now they drag their pillows in and lay there until I feed Lincoln and head downstairs for the day. My heart is so blessed by those kiddos, and I admit I'm just a tad bummed that 3 will start school tomorrow, even though they are anything but bummed :)!

(Reese and Char only go 2 days one week, 3 days the next though. I'm lovin' that type of schedule!)

So anyway, just wanted to pop that little image on here, and say that seriously love those people :).

We're off to the pool to soak up our last day of Summer!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Ode To Summer

Sometimes when I can't form a real thought, I write a poem. Strange, you say? Alright, maybe a little...

Its that time again,
oh yes, it is true.
Summer is now ending,
the days left are just a few.

We've played at the pool,
day in and day out.
You kiddos swam and swam,
it was a place to scream and shout.

You always brought your goggles,
even though sometimes they would leak.
And when you'd have enough of that,
you'd play hide 'n seek.

We hung out with friends,
both old ones and new.
They laughed at our crazy group,
and called me "The Woman In The Shoe".

Last Summer was so different,
and I can't help but think.
That's when God said, "let's add more",
and He gave us little Linc.

You kiddos are a gift,
this Summer's been a blast.
I just wish we could have a few more weeks, 
because it went by way to fast!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Back To School Baking

So we're still gearing up for school over here, and I'm still trying to figure out why finding everything on their school supply list was like trying to find my way through a maze...blind folded.

I've never even seen some of the supplies on that list - back in my day, we showed up with a pencil pouch and a matching Trapper Keeper and we were good to go.

Trapper Keepers, they just made ya feel cool.

(I'm pretty sure I had one with unicorns on it)


For the past few years the girls and I have done some back to school baking - festive little treats to get you in the back-to-school mood. You know, if that mood existed and was more exciting than doing cannon balls off the diving boards :).

They love cooking with me, and it always ends up being a good time together. They picked 2 treats, 1 school related and one not so related. The first was Chalkboard Cupcakes, and they turned out super cute. Here's Ella's...

Pretty cute, huh?

Here are the ingredients and directions for those:

-Yellow, green, and white frosting
-Red Skittles or M&M's
-Small plastic bag
-Chocolate-covered graham crackers
-White Good & Plenty candy (we used Tic Tacs)


-Cover the cupcakes with yellow frosting and allow them to sit for an hour before decorating. Dab each red Skittle or M&M with a bit of green frosting for the apple's leaf, then set them aside.

-Put a tablespoon or two of white frosting into a small plastic bag for piping. Cut a very small hole in a corner of the bag, twist the top of the bag closed, and secure it with a rubber band or twist tie. Piping the frosting gently out of the hole, write messages on the chocolate-covered graham crackers. Leave space at the bottom of the cookie, where it'll be stuck into the cupcake.

-Cut a groove in the cupcake's frosting with a knife, then fit a blackboard into the groove. Add one Skittle or M&M apple and a piece of Good & Plenty chalk, as shown.

Really easy, and the girls loved them.

We also made these Frozen Bananas dipped in chocolate...


1/2 cup of Chocolate Chips
1/2 cup of Chocolate Frosting


- Cut bananas into sections, place toothpick in the center, place on wax paper, then freeze for 20-30min.

- Melt chocolate chips and frosting in a bowl.

- Dip frozen bananas in mixture, then roll in sprinkles. Place in freezer. That's it!

So that's something we've been up to this week, trying to make the back to school season a little more fun and a little more appealing - I mean, my girls are excited, but they looovvvee the pool. It's always rough to hang our suits up for the winter :).

We're not the only ones who think baking makes back to school more fun, are we :)??

Disclosure - Compensation was provided by Country Crock via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Country Crock.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


sweet months old...

Sigh, how did 4 months pass SO quickly!?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Sometimes, He Puts Me On His Shoulders...

so I can see.

See the bigger picture...

the beauty in this busy life...

that not every day will be perfect...

and that it's the small stuff that really counts...

So I can see that His plan is running smoothly...

that my plan is not the best course...

that He is always doing a new thing...

that I spend to much time worrying...

and that sometimes life just gets messy...

He puts me on His shoulders so I can see that my vision is so limited compared to His...

that He gives you a new outlook for each new season...

that just doing the next thing is the best option...

and see that sometimes things don't line up perfectly...and thats ok...

So I can see whats real...

what is true...

what pure joy looks like...

and what is most important...

Sometimes, He puts us on His shoulders so we can see what He sees - and that, is a sweet view.

Hope you all have a great weekend :).

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Snow Cones Vs. The Shark Tank

We took the kiddos to the Aquarium today...

there was exhibit after exhibit...

and exotic sea creatures as far as the eye could see...

but you know what they talked about the whole time we were there???

The snow cone stand that was on the way IN to the aquarium!!

I guess its kinda like the "buy them a toy and they play with the box theory" isn't it?

Oh well, we had a great family outing. And when they chose the snow cone over the shark tank it made me laugh - they always remind me that its the small, simple stuff that counts :).

How We're Getting Ready For A Savvy School Year

August is half way over, can you believe it?!

While we've been floating on noodles at the pool, the stores have filling their back to school aisles to the brim with supplies, backpacks, and everything else you could possibly need to start the school year.

And in just 2 weeks, 3 of my 6 will start.

Bring over tissues and brownies and we'll go through pictures of when they were first born, ok?

Over the next few weeks I'm joining some other mama's to talk about what is making the back to school season easier, less stressful, and more efficient for us. Sounds fun, right?

So today I'm going to list some things that I've been doing to help my 3 savvies prepare for school.

- I've started telling them about the new schedule that's coming. Not only is this for them my friends, but it's also a daily reminder for myself that I won't be shuffling to the coffee machine in my pj's at 8am while we wait for the pool to open. I've been telling them when school starts, how long they are there, and when they eat lunch or go to recess.

- I have been assuring them, the younger 2 especially, that it's ok to be a little nervous - or in their case, insanely excited! I ask them what questions they have or what they are most excited for.

- I got some note cards at good 'ol Target a while back and have been giving them each one every day. They all have something written on the inside for them to learn each day - they think its so fun to carry them around in their little pockets. For Ella I do a math problem or spelling word, and for Reese and Char I have been doing simple words or short sentences. They are really into learning to read right now so they LOVE it.

- Obviously, like everyone else, we are visiting the school. And sometimes actually when we're out running errands, I'll drive by and point out their "new to Reese and Charlotte" school. They are all so excited for open house and can't wait to meet their teachers.

- And last, I talk it up :). I tell them how much fun its going to be, how much they are going to learn, all the new friends they will make, and how I am so excited to hear all about their day when they get home!

(I try to leave out the fact that I want to hang on to their ankles as they walk up to the entrance screaming "don't go...stay little forever!!" Ahem.).

So there ya have it. Just a few things I'm doing to prepare their little minds and hearts for a new school year - here's hoping they help!

Disclosure - Compensation was provided by Country Crock via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Country Crock.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I'll Count My Blessings

The house is busy as usual, the girls are downstairs playing, and I'm enjoying my little man's toothless smile looking at me.

I can hear the girls giggling, Lincoln is cooing, and in this moment...

Nothing else matters.

Not the housework, not the stress of everyday life, not the bills, not even the fact that I can't seem to form a complete thought lately or get enough sleep.

All that matters right now is that God is showing me what it truly means to be blessed, and that the path we're on was paved by Him. His plans are always on purpose, for His purpose.

Those loads of laundry that are piling up? That's a blessing.

All those little bright colored dishes still laying in the sink? A blessing.

The many, many toys scattered all around the house? Blessing.

And the 2yr olds that unscrewed their sippy cups and poured milk over their (mischievous) heads? Yep, total blessings.

Oh and those not-so-nice comments that some people have had to share lately about having too many kids? Yea, those aren't important.

I don't deserve these blessings, yet He still gives in abundance, He still pours out His love, and He still holds me up on my meanest mom days.

With every giggle, every hug, every funny story they tell me, and every little helping hand, I am overwhelmed by the gifts that these kiddos are. They cook with me, they check email with me, they run errands with me, they put away laundry with me, and they still hug my neck after a draining day when my patience was thin.

They are treasures...

I'm the one who gets to stay home with them, care for them, kiss thier boo-boo's, and listen to their little voices sing in the car on the way to the store. To know that God has chosen me to do that, well, it overwhelms me.

Even in the stressful midst of this semi-controlled chaos, and even when the time out chair has been the most used seat in the house, God reminds me that motherhood is a calling, my calling.

Do I know what causes this? Yep.

Better me than you? If you say so.

And are we finally done? God only knows.

But I do know when people say, "wow, you have your hands full!", I can say with my whole heart, "I sure do, but this handful is my greatest blessing." :)

Monday, August 8, 2011

These Big Bright Eyes...

and those squishy, chubby cheeks...

I just can't get enough.

Oh I love him to pieces...but that's not obvious is it?? :)

Friday, August 5, 2011

I've Got A Lot Of Feet To Cover

Thank you to Crocs for sponsoring this blog post. Please click here to learn more about Crocs’ new Back to School line. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Oh it's back to school time. We've been to the pool a bajillion times, we've cruised the aisles of Target looking for goggles and dive sticks to replace the ones we've lost, and we've worn our flip flops till they don't flop anymore.

Have I ever mentioned that sometimes I wear flip flops well into November?

Don't judge me.

But now it's time to get out there with my older 3 specifically to get some new kicks for Fall, and let me just say that taking them all shoe shopping is definitely fun but also can be...well...exhausting.

The good news though is that we all love crocs, you might remember that sometimes we lead a very rough, non-relaxing life while we wear them...

I think that picture is the definition of relaxing, wouldn't ya say??

The two things I look for in shoes for the kiddos is that they last a long time, and if possible, they can slip on. Slip ons are a gift to a busy mom. In this house you only get shoes with laces if you can tie them yourself - sorry, but it's a time issue my friends. If I'm running behind, I need the girls to be able to pop their shoes on quickly.

Tying to many shoes can make a person crazy, laces do that to me.

When I find a good deal or a clearance aisle with mary jane/slip on shoes, I try to find sizes we can use or might need in the near furure. I have also been known to buy Crocs at the end of the season for the next year to help save money. They are durable, and our girls have actually passed them down to each other which helps us in the financial department. Shoes are just to expensive to be replacing them every 2 months with 6 kids, so ones that last are a good buy for us.

So anyway, we're off today to start shopping for the coming school year. If you see us in the shoe store and the kiddos are pulling off all the shoes from all those tiny little shelves, just look the other way...or send over some starbucks and chocolate, I'll need it.

You can watch the Crocs Back To School video below and get clicky to find some good deals on some cute kicks!

Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fact Or Fiction?

I wear my heart on my sleeve.

Fact or Fiction?

I hate plain raisins, but LOVE chocolate covered raisins.

Fact or Fiction?

I think Hummus can replace almost every condiment.

Fact or Fiction?

I had a car in High School that my friends and I nicknamed the "BMW" - even though it was clearly nothing of the sort.

Fact or Fiction?

My very straight hair is actually naturally wavy.

Fact or Fiction?

I loved the New Kids On The Block when I was young...and in a way, I kind of still do.

Fact or Fiction?

I had a really unfortunate perm in grade school.

Fact or Fiction?

I was in a bad accident while doing a summer long mission trip in which my car rolled several times.

Fact or Fiction?

In college, I scared a potential boyfriend off when I said, "I want like, a lot of kids..."

Fact or Fiction?

I started college majoring in Organizational Leadership, but finished majoring in being a Stay At Home Mom.

Fact or Fiction?

Eric was the 1st guy to ever make me feel secure.

Fact or Fiction?

We started dating in July of 2002, and we married 6 months later.

Fact or Fiction?

I was pregnant 6 months after our wedding.

Fact or Fiction?

I've had 2 miscarriages. 1 before all the girls, and 1 before Lincoln. Both at 8 weeks.

Fact or Fiction?

The Dr. told me when I was pregnant with Ella that I "had the perfect torso to carry a set of twins".

Fact or Fiction?

I wanted to name one of the girls Hazel.

Fact or Fiction?

Before I feel in love with the name Lincoln, I wanted to name him Easton.

Fact or Fiction?

One of my best friends calls me Jan.

Fact or Fiction?

I've been going to bed at 9:30pm.

Fact or Fiction?

Ella is leaving for the weekend to visit family with Eric's parents. She is SO excited - but I am counting down the hours till she gets back :).

Fact or Fiction?

I still check each of the kids every night before I go to bed.

Fact or Fiction?

My Reese and Charlotte start Kindergarten in 20 days and I will probably cry.

Fact or Fiction?

I love to drive around and sing along to my favorite music.

Fact or Fiction?

Going from 5 to 6 was a bigger adjustment for me than having twins.

Fact or Fiction?

A cozy hoodie, and an iced Starbucks coffee are 2 of my favorite things.

Fact or Fiction?

When I find a shirt I love, I will buy it in every color.

Fact or Fiction?

I love to vacuum, but I hate to mop.

Fact or Fiction?

The 1st thing Eric did in the ultrasound room when they said Kinley and Raya were girls was laugh and say "5 weddings!"

Fact or Fiction?

The way Lincoln smiles when he see's Eric melts my heart.

Fact or Fiction?

I love a good sale, and I rarely pass by a clearance section.

Fact or Fiction?

I love watching old episodes of the Golden Girls.

Fact or Fiction?

I think laughter is the best medicine.

Fact or Fiction?

I think laughing till you cry is even better medicine.

Fact or Fiction?

I know many of the Target workers by their first name.

Fact or Fiction?


All of them. :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

They Remind Me...

that sometimes.we need a break...

that together is the best place to be...

that they need my full attention, all my hugs, and mostly...my time.

They remind me that it's important to sit and listen to what they're saying...

that they're growing insanely fast...

that I need to listen to Him so I can teach them...

and that some days were made for face painting and running through the sprinkler at home...

They remind me that this is my calling...

that this is where I serve...

that they are my priority...

that I need to set an example for them to follow...

and that they are watching my every move.

They remind me to laugh out loud...

to pray more and talk less...

to remember whats really important...

to love the ones around you...

and to embrace the day (and your sisters)...

They remind me to take a step back...

to watch what I say...

to sing and dance along to the music in the car...

and that they are 6 little pictures of God's sweet grace.

They remind me of a lot of things...those are just a few :).