Sunday, February 12, 2012

Mika's 2nd Birthday Party

I had a mini-meltdown this week. It was at that point I was reminded that the reason I work so hard on my kids' birthday parties is because I want them to feel loved and feel special. It doesn't matter if the party doesn't turn out exactly as I planned. They are worth every minute I put into their parties. Would they feel loved without me going to the trouble of a totally homemade party? Absolutely. I still love having these parties because it is something I love doing for them.

That said, we had Mika Lynn's second birthday party on Saturday. It was everything I imagined it would be. She was all smiles so I think she felt very loved and quite special. I decided a few months back to have an ice cream social for her party. It was tons of fun to plan and made for a fun party!

So here you go. A few pictures from my baby's special day.
I couldn't have pulled this off without the help of my sweet friend, Vickie. She helped with the fabric flowers, boxes, everything and she let me bounce ideas off of her. Thanks girl!

I made yummy cupcakes with a delicious frosting recipe I found on Pinterest. Topped with pearl sprinkles, they were the perfect girly cupcake. I thought the patterned boxes were perfect holding the cupcakes.

Garland, "ice cream" banner and balloons. I love how balloons scream "Party!"

Ice cream sundae area. Chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, homemade strawberry sauce, strawberries, chocolate banana chips, cherries, candies, sprinkles and marshmallows. And don't forget the whipped cream.

I ordered the ice cream cups and spoons here. I stamped some of the spoons with Mika's name. I love fun details like that.

I used twine and stickers to dress up the jars a little. Details.

For some reason, two dozen cupcakes looked like a lot on this table. Ha! We had plenty left over this morning that we took to church to share.

The table. I loved the pinks with a hint of yellow. I also made cake batter balls from another Pinterest recipe. Delish.

How cute is this? The ice cream sundae bar was so fun! I loved working with the idea of an ice cream social.

The birthday girl with her Mimi and her big sister. Sadly, my camera lost the sweet pictures I took of Mika and her birthday table.

The girl with her gifts. What a blessing!

It was a wonderful day and the birthday girl loved every minute of it! I still can't believe she is two. I want to thank everyone who celebrated with us and everyone who helped me make the day so special for my baby girl.

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend.


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Parties and Babies and Boo Boos

Things have been so crazy around here. We have a big birthday party this weekend. I still can't believe my baby is two. Eeek. She is officially not a baby anymore. I have been working so hard on her party... the perfect ice cream social. Yes, I know, nothing is truly perfect. But I've been so pleased with how everything has turned out that it is perfect to me. A sweet friend and I have spent hours making all sorts of cute stuff for the party. I have loved every minute of it and hope Mika feels so loved at her party.

Here is a sneak peek for you:

I ordered some ice cream cups and little wooden spoons from a website and I am loving them!! We've made banners and garlands and cupcake toppers and cupcake holders and 'thank you' tags and a special birthday shirt. It has been tons of fun and I can't wait to see it all come together Saturday.

I'm also in the middle of planning another birthday party for sometime in March. It's a big party (Peyton is turning 5!) and I have big plans for it. Once I get past Mika's party I will get to work on P's party. 

The girls got to meet their newest cousin a couple weeks ago. My sister had her baby girl a couple weeks early and we are all madly in love with AK.
Is she not the cutest thing EVER???? I loved making her so fun hair accessories and it makes me so happy to see her wear them. Hehe! I can't wait to get back to Whit's house and squish this precious baby.

While we were at my sister's house, Mika burned her thumb on something. My Nancy Drew instincts tell me it was a lightbulb, but I don't know for sure. Anyway, a couple days after I first noticed a blister on her thumb it ended up getting really bad and nasty. So I had Jared take her to an after hours clinic one Sunday morning to have it checked out. I couldn't stomach this boo boo so I kept the other girls. The sweet doctor fixed her up and we had to keep her thumb wrapped for about a week. It was so pitiful. She was proud of her bandages though! Ha!

And finally - I am so ready to spend some time with my Mom and Nanny this weekend. They are coming for the party and staying the night with us. Yay!!! I love them so much and haven't seen them enought lately. I can't wait to see them. And the girls are even more excited than me.... they love Mimi and Nanny!!

And that is a quick (ha!) update on us. I have freed up some of my schedule so I should be able to blog more now.... I hope. I really do.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Busy Bees

I have been SO BAD at blogging. I have some very good reasons for my lack of attention to the blog Perhaps they are more excuses than reasons, but either way.... it is my life right now and computer/free time is very minimal.

First, I am going crazy waiting on my new niece to arrive. I send my sister texts constantly checking on her. I will have a three hour drive to get to the hospital when she goes into labor, eek! I have my bag packed as well as bags for the girls. I just can't stand it! I am so ready to meet her sweet little self.

Speaking of little miss, my sister is calling her "A" on her blog, we had the best shower for her and my sister last weekend.

Isn't that so cute??? Sweet Julia at Sweet Happenings did the shower and she is fabulous! Seriously, if you need a party/wedding/event planner, she is your girl. She blogged the shower with more detailed pictures.... check it out! Baby A is so loved!!!!

Another reason for my absence: I have been helping a friend out by watching her baby a few times a week. The girls love having a baby in the house and it has been so much fun so far! It means a lot to me to be able to help her out. Plus, who doesn't love a little snuggly baby? Am I right?!

I am also in the process of planning a baby shower for my S-I-L. It is in less than two weeks and I can't wait to celebrate her second daughter with her. I have all the ideas planned out for the shower, I just need to get a move on and get some things put together.

The first few months of the year are always quite busy for us. Two of my babies have birthdays coming up so I am planning a couple of birthday parties. I have some great ideas but really need to get things done. I haven't even finalized invitations for our February birthday. Eeek!

All of this is on top of my normal stuff - husband, three kids, the home, my Ladies' Group, committments I've already made, and on and on. It is a busy time for us.

My life is so full right now and I love it. I love having so much to do with my time. I will keep trying to post... bear with me as I try to balance all these things going on in my life.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

There's a Whole Lot of Christmas Over There

I love the "Week of Christmas". Jared and I have decided that we want to start a tradition of doing something special each day for the entire week before Christmas.

Sunday: Date Night
We went on a double date with J's sister and her hubby. Movie then dinner at one of our fave restaurants. It was so nice to get to spend some time together laughing and holding hands and eating chips and cheese dip. And if you are thinking we left the girls out - we didn't. They got to have one of their cousins spend the night (and babysit) and they were lovin' every minute of it.

Monday: Make Christmas Gifts for Cousins
The girls and I made their gift to give their cousins this year. We loved every minute of it. I will keep the gift a secret for now, but I will say I found in on Pinterest and it turned out perfectly! I took a few pics throughout the week of our fun...

Tuesday: Bake Christmas Cookies
We decided this would be the perfect day to bake cookies. I love baking and so do my little helpers.

Wednesday: The Polar Express movie night
We are planning on staying in tonight and watching The Polar Express. I love the movie and the girls do too. Jared has never watched the whole thing, but I know he will love it. We will pop popcorn after dinner and get in jammies and snuggle in for movie night.

This afternoon we are having a wrapping party with friends. I love wrapping and can't wait to make a fun afternoon of it.

Thursday: Gingerbread House and Holiday Lights
Tomorrow afternoon we will have some older cousins come over to help the girls make a gingerbread house. I love this fun tradition. Then tomorrow night after dinner (homemade pizzas - our favorite dinner for busy nights) we will go out to see all the lights. This may be the thing I'm looking forward to most! When we were visiting dad we drove around one night and Laila looked over at one house full of lights and blowups and said "There's a whole lot of Christmas over there." I love her little thoughts. Ha!

Friday: Family Christmas Party
Daddy is off work Friday so we will have a lazy day at home then go to my in-laws for the family Christmas party. This is such a fun, sweet time with the family and the girls love being with their cousins.

Saturday, Christmas Eve: Open gifts together at home
Saturday we will be going to my grandmother's house. So Saturday morning we will wake up and let the girls open their gifts from us at home. I have never spend Christmas Eve night anywhere but my Nanny's house so we will be there that night.

Sunday: CHRISTMAS!!!!
We will be with all of my family on Christmas day. It is a special time for us celebrating with our family. I love how Christmas is one of the most fun times of year. We have so much fun and do so many things in celebration of the greatest gift God gave us. I love every minute of the season, I always have. But this year, with the girls experiencing so much of Christmas, I have fallen in love with the season even more.

Merry Christmas Y'all!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Lost in a story

So we are still at my dad's which means I have no pictures again. But I am trying to build momentum and make writing a habit. So today I'm going to give you a quick glimpse into my mind....

My three girls are napping (amazing) and I found myself with some free time. Today I chose to watch The Help. We are away from home and I don't have the responsibilities of home to occupy my time today. I spent a couple of hours engrossed in a movie. The end credits rolled and I found myself so happy. I love losing myself in a story.

I love movies, books, anything with a story. I read every night before I got to sleep. I tried explaining my need to read to Jared but all I came up with is that when I read, I get lost in the story. For those moments while I am flipping pages (or pressing the > on my Kindle) the worries and stresses and concerns of the day are gone. It is just me and the story.

I need those moments.

I need to be separated from my day for just a few minutes.... I believe it helps me sleep better because I don't have anxieties running through my mind while my head is on the pillow. We all have our things we do to help us get through our day, reading is mine. I love a story.

I love to start my day with the Bible and a devotional and end it with a novel. The hours that exist in between I spend loving on my family, making our house a home, nourishing my family, teaching ABCs and numbers and love, kissing boo-boo's, tickling bellies, hugging necks, laughing, singing, dancing --- being "Wife" and "Mom". That's who I am. But for a few minutes everyday I get to be engrossed in a story. It makes me a better ME.

I am thankful my parents shared their love for reading with me. I'm doing my very best to share it with my girls.

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one."
                                                                                                                           --George R. R. Martin


Monday, December 12, 2011

I've been thinking a lot lately about priorities. Jared and I have discussed it some as well. We are really making an effort to make the time we spend together as a family count. It is so easy after a long day to just want to chill out in front of the tv.... but we don't want those to be the memories we make with our girls. So far, we have been so much happier as a family. In fact, the girls and I left Saturday to visit my dad for a few days. When I talked to Jared after we got here we both agreed that this was the hardest it has been on us to say goodbye. It is really crazy how much more I miss him right now than I ever have before. We decided it is probably because we have been really cherishing our family time together lately. Not that we didn't before, but something has changed.

So all of that has brought me to a point where I am trying to figure out where my priorities are now and what needs to change. It is the end of the year, after all. Isn't this when everyone starts evaluating their lives to see how to make them better?!

One thing I have really let slide this past year is blogging. I can justify it by saying it isn't really important for my family that I spend thirty minutes on the computer each day. But the truth is, it really is. Not because I'm blogging to be known or whatever, but because I am blogging our memories. This is our family scrapbook... because you know I don't have real scrapbooks for my family. I can't even comprehend how much work that would be. Ugh. :)

I am also really REALLY bad about taking pictures of my babies. My goal is to start taking at least one picture a day. One memory each day that I don't want to forget. Maybe this will help me record those memories on the blog as well.

I am so thankful for my family. We are having the most fun this Christmas season. The girls are all old enough to enjoy some parts of Christmas and I must say, I never knew Christmas could be so fun! I will save all of our Christmas activities for another post though.

Over the next couple of weeks I will be preparing my 2012 goals and looking at my 2011 goals. I'm looking forward to spending some time reflecting on the past year. I need to get myself organized and my priorities set straight so I can make the most of every day I'm blessed to spend with my family.

But for now, I need to go raid the pantry at my dad's house.... there are some shortbread cookies calling my name. I'm taking advantage of this time of year but in a few weeks, I'll be cleaning up my act. :)


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A little list to remember...

I have been so behind on all the many things I try to do around here. I haven't read too many blogs lately. I haven't been much for fb/twitter updates. I have this one pesky dish in my sink that I refuse to handwash even though it is almost too big for my dishwasher. I have 2 laundry baskets with my girls' clean clothes in them sitting in my bedroom floor because I haven't taken the time to put them all away. I have boxes of stuff in my garage that needs to go to Goodwill but it is still here. I have so many worksheets waiting on my girls to do them. Shall I go on???

So what have I been doing? I've been...

Snuggling my not-so-baby baby girls every day while we watch Lion King.
Making homemade soups.
Having a garage sale and selling so much of our stuff.
Watching my big girl play her last soccer game of the Fall season.
Having sweet family time in the evenings with all five of us.
Planning our Christmas cards.
Visiting old friends and their new babies.
Getting started on Christmas gifts.
Waking up at the crack of dawn.... thank you, Time Change.
Watching my baby turn into a little girl.
Eating apples and dreaming of apple pies.
Dreaming of the future with my sweetie.
Laughing as Pull-Ups have become the newest trend in dressing up in our house.... I'm trying to get a picture of this silliness.

I've been feeling lately like I don't have any good enough ideas to put into a blog post. But I am so thankful for this wonderful way to remember things about my sweet littles. So this is a little list to help me remember these days. We have some big/fun things happening in our family and I don't want to miss out on this exciting time because I'm so wrapped up in emails, facebook, twitter and blogs. But I still want to document this exciting time for our family. I will be back with so much more... I just need to figure out a better schedule for getting all the things done that I need to do each day.

I'm so thankful for these girls for filling up my days and bringing so much love and joy to our lives.