Friday, May 31, 2013

Last Day of School!! My, How They've Grown!!

Yesterday was the last day of school!  How in the world has another school year ended?!  Why are my kids growing up so fast?  I keep putting anti-aging pills in their food I'm so totally kidding but I wish I really could but they just keep on growing and aging!  I'm so happy to have them all home with me but I'm so sad too!  Sigh!
So...here are pictures of Jack and Molly on their first and last days of school for the 2012-2013 school year!

Jack's 1st day on the left, he looks so nervous!  And of course, he was!  But the picture on the right says it all, he loved school!  Every second of it!  Such a relief that he adjusted so well!

Molly's 1st day on the left, she was a ball full of excitement!  This girl has always loved every single part of school!  She loved it starting on day one, and the picture on the right is from her end of the year celebration!  Molly had a great year!

Jack with his teacher, Ms. Santa Maria!  Isn't she cute?!  He thinks so too!

Molly with Ms. Amy!  Molly has always loved her teachers and tells us she wants to be a preschool teacher, what a compliment to all of her wonderful teachers!

We are very thankful for the great school year, school and teachers are children had this year!  I'm still, I know, STILL, adjusting to the standards and expectations in Kansas vs. Texas, huge, huge difference.  But, my kids learned a lot, grew a lot, met a lot of friends, and loved going to school daily!  What more can I ask for?!

And now, to start off your weekend with a wonderful Molly quote, who is more then excited for Kindergarten.  "Maybe, next year, they will call me Kindergarten Molly!"  Man, I love that girl!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Summer Plans!

In exactly 3 hours, I will pick Jack up from school and summer break will officially begin!  Yay!  I know I'm the most excited, he was so sad this morning!  He loves his class, teacher and school, I think he's nervous that we'll move again we better not, still not unpacked!  Hello office and all of our books!  I reassured him we will have a great, fun, relaxing summer!  No more rigid schedules, no where we HAVE to be, just fun, quality time together, and decent bed times!  Trust me on this one! I have a Pinterest board dedicated to summer fun that I've been itching to use!  Last summer was a tad of a bust according to my plans, you know, with selling a house, moving to another state, husband starting new job and not around, finding a house, spending most of our time in Kansas!  The kids had fun with their grandparents, which was awesome!  Now, I'm ready to have some fun with them!


Here are a few of our summer plans!

*Baseball games, lots!  Jack's first game is tomorrow night and he plays through mid-July!  Plus, we want to see the Royals and T-Bones!  Yum...I hear nachos with fake cheese saying my name!

*Cub Scout Camp!  Jack's first full week of summer will officially be spent at Cub Scout Day Camp!  He's so excited and he'll have such a fun time!  I'm a little dreading the 7:30 a.m arrival to the bus each morning, and Jack will be gone until 4 daily, let's talk about how tired he will be!  Oh well, I know he will love every second of the camp, being with his friends, outside and dirty!  Hope he doesn't come home with a tick as a new pet! 

*Swimming lessons!  All three kids are taking lessons or a refresher course!  Molly and Will start next week and they are so excited!

*Gymnastics!  Again, all three kids are taking gymnastics with their friends and, again, all are excited!

**Promise I'm not overscheduling my kids!  Mondays are going to be full with swimming and gymnastics, but I promise that's it!  Now, back to our summer plans!

*A few trips, I'm starting to get excited about!!  A lot of family trips and one just for mom and dad!  

*Reading and lots of it!  We are doing the reading program through our library and I plan on  going to the library a ton this summer!  Our kids love books and reading, so do I!  Jack and I just started Harry Potter last weekend!  Yay!  My dreams are coming true!  Plus, I'm requiring Jack and Molly, and this means Will too, to read at least 20 minutes a day!  And I have a reading list a mile long....I'll post about that later!

*Writing!  Practicing writing letters and numbers, letters to our friends in Texas, stories, Venn diagrams comparing books to the movie version...anything to practice, practice, practice!

*Fine motor skills:  Will needs to work on these, getting his fingers stronger!  Lots of play dough (found tons of homemade ones on Pinterest I'm excited to check out and have the kids help make!), cutting, Lego's, mixing colors with eye droppers, beads, marshmallow shooters...get those fingers strong Will!

*Gross Motor:  Milk jug toss, water balloon games to practice catching and throwing, soccer camp for Jack and Molly...later in August, lots of parks, bike riding, scooters, jump rope, along with swimming and gymnastics!

*Swimming!  Besides swimming lessons, we have our city pool passes and I'm ready to go test out the pools in our area!  Can I be honest?  Missing those Texas pools we all got spoiled with!

*Play dates!  On our way to school, we talked about who we're having over for play dates this summer!  That will be fun!

*Water balloon and water guns, enough said!

*Making our own chalk paint!  Molly will love this!

*Balloon Ping Pong!
*Science experiments!  Jack loves science, so we're going to make a mess and learn!  And we're going back to the basics!  Color mixing, baking soda and vinegar mixtures, bouncing eggs, oil and water bottles, cleaning penny's, magnets, maybe even a trip to Science City at Union Station!

*Yard Twister!  Been wanting to do this one for awhile!

*Lots of art and cooking projects!  Besides the sidewalk chalk paint, but outside collages, nature walks and collages, pudding, cookies, pies want to make my own pie crust, 4th of July treats, fruit kabobs and dip, s'mores squeal!  My faves, homemade milkshakes and ice cream, homemade cheezits, the list is endless!  

*Kansas City Places to Visit:
-The Plaza:  walk around with the kids, story time at a local book store!
-Farmers Market:  pick up local produce, live music and events!  Love it!  Want to check out City Market too!
-Crown Center:  my kids love it down there, hopefully visit Kaleidoscope or Science City!
-Theater in the Park:  At a local park, that shows plays outside! Peter Pan is playing in July!  
-Movies!  Molly has only been to the movie theater once and Will never has, but all three kids want to see Monsters University and Despicable Me 2!  Let's be honest, I'm excited about both too!
-$1 movies at Theater in the Park!  Mary Poppins is playing at the park and it's only $1 per person!  Yay!  
-Strawberry and blue berry picking!  
-A visit to KU and the museums there! 
-Fairy Garden and Overland Park Arboretum's
-Picnic lunch and playing at Antioch Park, one of our favorites!
-Royals and T-Bones games!
-Mini-golf, heard of a fun place in Parkville, MO!
-Camp out....this is for sure on the top of my husbands list, not quite the top of mine
-Have a lemonade stand!
-Fireworks!  Bummed I missed out on Memorial Day!
-Go to a drive-in movie, might have to settle for the outside movies at Theater in the Park or Crown Center
-Starlight-Molly really wants to see Little Mermaid!  Jack said he could go too!
-Dress up tea party
-Bowling
-Sonic Happy Hour
-Build a fort inside
-BBQ with friends!  
-Pajama party, movies, popcorn, and stay home all day!  

I'm sure there are a few things missing, but sounds like we're going to have a great summer!  I plan on Mondays being are day at home, between the swimming lessons and gymnastics!  Tuesdays through Friday, do one thing, either going somewhere in Kansas City, or going to a park and then doing something at home!  We'll see! Everyday we will read, write, and do something educational...just don't tell my kids!!  Whew!  I better rest up for summer!  What are your summer plans?!


Friday, May 24, 2013

Friday Favorites!

Happy Friday!  Whew, what a week!  We have NOTHING planned this weekend and I'm so looking forward to relaxing with my family!  Here are some of my favorites from this week!!

Love this new shower curtain I picked up at Target this week!  The kids bathroom is a light gray and our red one we've had since we got married was looking a little dated, so I picked up this beauty!  It really brightens up the small space and I love it!

The weather is beautiful right now and all of our windows are wide open!  I love the breeze blowing through all the windows of our house!  And I wish this was my window!


I'm loving my new glasses and this little girl!  She had her end of preschool celebration yesterday and I'm a proud mama!  

I love this creamer so much, it's the perfect balance of chocolate and cream for my coffee.  I also like their vanilla!  But, it's been hard to find lately!  Why?!







Love, love, love maxi skirts!  They are so cute, so comfy, and can be worn all the time!  I love wearing them with a tank top and flip flops, but dress up the outfit with cute sandals and a necklace!  Fingers crossed this style stays forever!!


Fireworks....

grilling out...

and a cold margarita or sangria are on the agenda for our Memorial Day weekend!
What are some of your favorites?  Any big plans for Memorial Day?  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

What We've Been Up To....

The past few weeks have been a little on the crazy side...the main crazy, I hurt my lower back.  Really, really painful and couldn't really do much.  Not. Fun.  And, how did I hurt my lower back?  I slipped on mud while mowing and landed on the street, on my left arm and lower back.  So embarrassing!  And yes people stopped to make sure I was OK....so embarrassing!

So, here's what we've been up to the past few weeks....in pictures!
Molly getting her first pedicure!  She picked neon yellow and got a flower on each big toe!  Her friend Lizzie was there too!  Such a fun little date!

After our pedicure, we went to a Mother's Day brunch and our family had four generations!  Eric's grandma Mogo, Eric's mom Marsha, Eric's youngest sister Katie, and Molly!


On Mother's Day, we celebrated Eric's birthday, my cousins high school graduation, and Mother's Day!  

Eric's own birthday cake!  He turned 34, can you tell?!

Singing "Happy Birthday" to our favorite Daddy!  And please ignore those blank walls...I'll get to those walls as soon as I get to the other ones!!

Blowing out the candles!

Will rode his bike to school, two miles, and he loved every minute of it!  He really needs to stop growing up so fast!  

We played an intense game of Candy Land!

Molly earned a soccer medal at the last game!  

Molly and her team, The Silver Stars!  She scored 5 goals the last game!  Molly loves soccer!

Now, on to end of the year celebrations, baseball practice and games, and the last day of school for Jack and Molly!!  Next Thursday, we're ready  for you!  Surprisingly, we have zero plans for Memorial Day weekend!  How about you, any big plans?!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Praying for Oklahoma

My heart is aching right now for everyone in Moore, Oklahoma.  I've been praying for

...the parents sent their children to school yesterday morning and now can't find their children

....those poor children trapped, injured, or who died

...their teachers who did their best to protect and shelter them from the storms

....for everyone who lost their home, pets, a loved one

....all the people who watched it with their own eyes, trapped on I-35, hopeless, scared, and helpless

...the rescue workers, first responders, medics, fire fighters, police officers, and all the volunteers who will search, rescue, clean up, and rebuild Moore, Oklahoma



Moore was one of our pit stops when we used to drive from Kansas City to Houston.  The images are surreal of the devastation.  And hearing that two schools were leveled, several dozen children are missing, and seeing the debris that flew miles and states away.  Then hearing politicians, reporters, and talk show hosts making jokes, blaming global warming, or pointing fingers at other political parties, so wrong, so not right, and lets focus on helping and praying and moving forward.  

I'm praying to God to help answers prayers, questions, and calm us.  God, show us the rainbows!  I'm holding my kids extra tight, giving extra kisses, and remembering to not yell because at my kids because I put too much ice in a water bottle (that may have happened and I feel really guilty).  We hugged and said our I love you's and hugged again.  A lot of families don't get that today. 







Monday, May 13, 2013

What I've Been Reading!!

Thank you, everyone, for the decorating advice!  Decorate my house mission is in progress, might take a few months years, but I really appreciate everyones help!  Look for updates and pictures coming soon!
Now, I want to share some really amazing books I've read, usually during nap when I'm laying with Will!  This is a new feature in nap time!  I'll take his extra snuggles any day!  All of these books have been very enjoyable and I tend to keep reading after Will falls asleep! No worries, I still get lots done, just not everything on my list!

1.
Sophie Kinsella does it again!  I love, love, love her and she writes such fun, charming, and adorable stories!  I wanted to keep reading when I finished!

2.
I think I've read almost all of Nicholas Sparks' books.  All are easy reads, a tad cheesy at times, but a guranteed quality book!  Loved this one, just wish he went into more details about the end and what happened to everyone.

3.
Wow, so good, so crazy, so weird, so very messed up.  Gillian Flynn writes some crazy books,and I actually liked Dark Places better, which I read after Gone Girl.  I am so excited for all of her future books!  

4.  

I'm currently reading Little Bee by Chris Cleave and I'm really loving it!  I'm at the point in the book where I'm highly confused about what's going to happen next, what just happened, and trying to stay awake at night to read it!  I love a good book!

Now, for some books I tried but just couldn't finish, you'll see why!

1.  
I tried, I really did.  I wanted to love this book but I couldn't.  There are so many characters, it was so confusing keeping everyone together!  And they talk about past events right at the start of the book, I'm sure they will recap eventually, but I was so confused!  Maybe some other time, really.

2.  
A friend told me this was such an uplifting story, but I couldn't get past all the graphic details on her life, her getting raped, and shaved, and the poor little girls innocent life taken away.  I just kept thinking of Molly or any little girl.  Maybe someday, but it was too sad of a story.

Any books you highly recommend or avoid?!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I Need Decorating Help!

I've said this in the past, we have a lot of wall space in our house and not enough decoration to fill!  I am so clueless about decorating and I just get overwhelmed, this is one area Pinterest is NOT helpful!  I love everything and can't narrow down or decide how I want to decorate rooms in my own house!  So, I need your help!  We're going to start with our family room.  This is the room we spend a majority of our time in as a family, next to the kitchen!  Any suggestions, stores to purchase awesome items, or just any ideas would be so appreciated!

**Paint colors will not change.  Eric is not up for painting and likes all of our paint colors, I can tolerate them.  I don't love all the colors but they are better then some I've seen.

Please excuse sick child on the couch!

And all items seen can be moved or rearranged...especially sick child on couch

The wall to the left now has a large clock, but I still think I need more...and I really want a chair for right there too!  Thoughts?!

Another angle...thoughts?!
Now for the basement...we use it a lot, but mainly the kids go down there to make a huge mess.  This is where the majority of toys belong!  I really don't like being down there because all I stare at are the blank walls.  And they stare back at me.  They look sad.
The first wall you see when you walk downstairs to the basement.  And the one window we have. 

The back wall of the basement

Description:  Blank walls.

See above description.

Please excuse the mess and only focus on the blank walls.  
 Any suggestions, stores to purchase awesome items, or just any ideas would be so appreciated!  Thanks in advance!!

Monday, May 6, 2013

All I want for Mother's Day is...

Is that too hard to ask for?  I love them all so dearly, but a day, alone, I would cry tears of happiness! I'm only half kidding, I love my kids and husband!  For a moment or two, lets forget the traditional Mother's Day gift list and work on these beauties instead!
1.  Use the restroom without someone asking me what I'm doing in there, what do they think I'm doing in there?  And how come Eric can go to the restroom and no one bothers him at all?!!
2.  Not sweep entire meals off the floor after every meal!
3.  Have a least one clean room in the house, not even clean but clutter-free!
4.  If one see's pee on or around toilet, they would wipe it up all by themself!
5.  A mimosa at breakfast, margarita at lunch, a tall bottle glass of wine at dinner, and coffee and baileys for dessert...too much?!
6.  For Eric to go grocery shopping, but use my list, my meals, coupons, and not go over budget!  And he could not bring home any frozen pizzas, chicken wings, nuggets, fish sticks, brownie mix, or cookie dough!
7.  Everyone to lick their plates and dinner and rave on and on about my meal planning, cooking skills, and the wonderful, delicious meal everyone begged for thirds and are stuffed full!
8.  The laundry fairy to fold, put away, iron, and hang up all the clothes!
9.  Shoes magically put away!
10.  No one melts down over:  "I only have jeans to wear today and I want swishy pants (athletic pants for non 7 year olds),"  "Those pants are so ugly, I will never wear those ever, yuck!"  "You need your nails trimmed!  No, NO NOO!"  Screams, wails, cries, throws monster fit over disgusting nails.
11.  Everyone else clean up their own mess, room, homework, etc
12.  To lay in bed all day and read a really good book.  I must be 100% healthy, being sick does not count for this one!  I would take laying on hammock too!
13.  A hammock.
14.  If brushing your teeth, make sure you spit in the sink, not the mirror, side of sink, around the sink, floor.  And if your spit and toothpaste are still in the sink, run a little water over it all and wipe the sink out!
15.  Someone else to prepare, make, plan, deliver all the Mother's Day gifts for the grandma's and great grandmas!  I'm speaking directly to you Eric!

Lucky me, Mother's Day is not the only holiday our family will be celebrating this year!  Eric turns the big 34!  Let's add more fun...it's his dad's birthday the day before!  Yay!  So, the kids and I are making Mother's Day presents for the grandma's and great-grandma's, birthday presents and cards for Papa and Daddy, and it's also Teacher Appreciation Week!  So, my little wish list above will have to wait, but I would take only one or two things off of it!  Hint: #1!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Spring, Where Are You?!

Yesterday, May 2nd, we had a bit of a surprise....


Snow.  In May.  Cold, freezing, white, snow.  Worse.  Spring.  Ever.

Makes me miss Texas more and more!  

On a happy note, most of the snow is melted, whew!  It's supposed to be in the 60's by Sunday and we can forget this whole winter nonsense until late November!  

Now, lets get back to this...
Yummy coffee and cute water bottles at the park!

Collecting Rolly Pulleys!  "Can we keep her for a pet?!"

Riding Bikes!

And climbing on our cars?!  

Hurry back warm weather, we miss you!  No more snow in May, ever again!  Happy Weekend Everyone!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

the Little Things!

I'm here snuggling with my sweet little Pugs on this cold, rainy day.  I've been reminded all week about how important the little things are in life that make the biggest impact.  I tend to forget that a smile or a wave to a neighbor, matter more then my to do list or laundry!

Almost every afternoon, on our way to pick up the kids from school, Will and I would see a sweet old man walking and he ALWAYS stopped walking and waved.  Not just to us, but to everyone!  Will and I would wave back and then after we picked up Jack and Molly, the four of us always waved at him again on our way home!  I just enjoyed seeing him daily, but then winter came and we didn't see him for a few months.  I was thinking about him as the weather started warming up, when someone from school posted on Facebook that the sweet man had passed away a few weeks ago.  We found out his name was Jack love it! and everyone in our neighborhood knew him as the waving man!  Earlier this week, we saw this sign on our way to school:


I couldn't think of a better way to honor such a sweet man!  I may have never said one word to him, but he touched my life, my family's life, and our entire neighborhood and school community!  What a great way to be remembered!  Every time we are playing outside, I wave at every car that drives by, smile and say hi to everyone who walks or runs by our house, and reminding my kids that it's OK to say hi to someone.  Don't go into a strangers car, yes, never!  Say hi or wave, yes!  Do it!

Another person who has touched my life also passed away this week.  My Great Aunt Pat, my grandma Mary's youngest sister, was one of the most caring, compassionate, sweet, and loving ladies I've met!  My grandma came from a huge family, but they were the sweetest family that had so much love for others!  I knew most of her siblings and loved being around them as I grew up, except for the family reunion in the middle of Pennsylvania when I was a teenager, Amish country tour wasn't my cup of tea that trip!  Aunt Pat was the youngest, was an educator, and was very easy to talk to, I just loved spending time with her, especially after my own grandma passed away.  My grandma Mary shared her love and passion of reading to me, and showed me the importance of being nice to everyone, waving hello, saying hello to strangers, and smiling!  I miss her!  Aunt Pat was so similar to my grandma, and I just loved seeing her!  But, Aunt Pat lived in Pennsylvania, so the last time I saw her was at our wedding, but she will be greatly missed and holds a special place in our hearts!  I have a feeling that Aunt Pat was embraced her family and friends when she got up to Heaven!  

Two more angels watching over us now and two people that made such a wonderful impact to my life!