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.


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The day after...

Our church had its first Harvest Fest last night. A few words to describe it: fun, success, joyful, candy, candy, candy.

This is the first year we have let the kids dress up. I wanted to make their costumes so we brainstormed ideas and came up with the perfect idea for each girl. Peyton asked for her costume specifically. She couldn't decide between a princess and a ballerina so we merged those two ideas into one. And Laila asked for her costume as well. I, of course, chose Mika's. They were all quite cute and had fun helping me put together their costumes.

Let me introduce:
Princess Peyton the Ballerina


 Old School Mika (thank you, Peyton, for naming her costume)

I loaded up Princess Peyton the Ballerina, RoboLaila and Old School Mika and headed to the fest. I was working the crafts booth so the girls and I were there the whole time. Needless to say, the had a blast and we came home with three buckets FULL of candy.

For a while, the girls thought we would have all of these fun games at church every week. Ha!

We were all exhausted when we got home and went straight to bed.

But there were three buckets of candy awaiting the girls this morning when they got up. After I allowed them one piece each they decided it was "so much fun" to play with the candy.

There have been piles sorted and piles counted and buckets filled and dumped and filled and dumped.

And I'm afraid in all of their candy sorting fun there have been a few casualties. I noticed Mika was being awfully quiet so I looked at her candy pile she was playing with. This is what I discovered....

You can bet we will be heading to the playground at Chick-Fil-A today to burn off some sugar energy. It is all worth it because last night couldn't have gone better. It was a perfect day and perfect evening. Hello November!!!

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Ok y'all.... I have a challenge for you.

I am so very interested to know who reads my blog. I read a few blogs but never comment so I'm definitely guilty of this. :) However, I'm curious to know who out there is reading my little story. And if you are reading I would love to know so I could visit you on your blog.

So challenge: If you are reading this, please leave me a comment. Maybe we can make some new friends. Either way I would still like to "meet" you, so leave me a comment. Besides all the comments would totally make my day and I know you all want to do that. Ha!

Challenge accepted??

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

In the Kitchen with Mommy

Y'all, I love to cook. I love being in my kitchen creating things for the people I love to enjoy. I love all things foody (except for the actual foods as I am a very "selective" eater - doesn't "selective" sound better than "picky"??). I love kitchens. I have a dream kitchen.... well, actually I have a lot of dream kitchens (thank you Pinterest).

Want to know what's great?? My kids love being in the kitchen too! They love to cook and help me in any way they can. It is wonderful and precious and frustrating! Ha! If you have little ones you know what I mean. I love that they love to help me though. I hope I am setting a good example for them. I try.

I haven't always been one to jump in the kitchen and cook. But now, I do it without thinking. I cook supper every night at home. I haven't always been that way but I truly enjoy it now. I make meal plans and do the grocery shopping once a week. It is fantastic and makes my life so much easier.

I am even turning into one of those moms who tries to be super-healthy. I use the word "try" but that's not exactly the right description. My family is just as picky (if not more) than I am and I am having such a hard time making healthy foods for them. But I really want to.... really.

I read all these studies about how this food and that food contribute to cancer risks and this health problem and that. Its overwhelming and scary. And I feel like the study writers opened my pantry and used that as the basis for their conclusions. Seriously? I feel like anything I buy in the grocery store is bad for us.

So I'm deciding right now to make a change. I don't want to serve food just because it is easy. Yeah, it is so much easier to open up a can of soup rather than make my own... but don't you think mine is much better tasting? And much healthier too? At least my home-made foods weren't listed on any of the studies I've read as bad for us, so they are good right?! I want to really be that good example for my kids. And I want them to be as healthy as possible. There is enough junk food out there, they shouldn't be surrounded with it at home. (Note: I do not serve my kids much junk food, but they do get some. They are not surrounded with it at home, by any means.)

I love that my girls are interested in cooking and I want them to develop a love for healthy eating. I am going through all of my cookbooks today searching for kid-friendly, healthy, not too difficult, and yummy recipes that we can add to our meal rotation. Does anyone have any suggestions? Perhaps I need to start posting some of our favorite meals on here... Maybe I just will.


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

For Love of the Game...

We decided this summer to sign Peyton up for soccer. We both thought she would love it.... and we were right! I got a call a few weeks before the season started asking if I wanted to coach. I actually laughed at the question.... I am such a great athlete and all. Ha! Anyway, Jared said he would love to, so we were signed up to coach P's team. Jared coaches and I handle all of the other things that go along with coaching a U-6 soccer team..... you know, coordinating game day snacks. Actually there are quite a few things that we have to stay on top of so it works out nicely for us to do it together.

Ok, this is not a post about how we coach a soccer team.... it is, in fact, a post about my oldest girl and her love for soccer.

Girl likes to show some attitude :)

Peyton loves, I mean LOVES, scoring goals. She gets so excited anytime she scores (even in practice) and she gets a little bummed when she doesn't score a goal.

Jared loves coaching. He is in his element. The kiddos love him as well. We have a great little team with some really cool kids. Jared tries so hard to make things fun for the kids. The other night at practice, the kids were just a little chatty and not wanting to do their practice games. So Jared decided to have them run "line drills" on the field. Wouldn't you know, they thought it was super-fun.... silly kids.

Games are every Saturday morning. The kids always look so cute in their uniforms.

And Miss P is always ready with a silly pose. She also likes to call in a sub so she can have a snack on the bench or get something to drink... seriously, she asks for a drink every 3 minutes or so. So funny.

I need to get her a black long-sleeve shirt to wear with her uniform... Pink and purple are all we have.

Peyton is all smiles when she is playing soccer. She loves it and I am so glad we are able to do this for her and with her.

I am usually found on the sidelines with my other girls. Needless to say, they both love the game as well and I imagine we will be playing soccer for quite a few years. It is a struggle for me to keep them in their seats and off the field during practice and games. You should see me and all of the stuff I bring to practice and games - it is borderline ridiculous. The other moms laugh at my giant bag of stuff that I bring in case we need something, like extra socks or donuts or another ball or a lamp or a down comforter. I kid, kind of. It is tons of fun though. And the smiles that we see on the field make everything worth it!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A Day in the Life....

I've been wanting to document what our days are looking like for a while. I want to remember how we spent our time when I'm thinking back in 20 years. So here is a look at our typical Tuesday.

7:00 Wake up
This morning Mika Lynn woke up first. When that girl gets up before anyone else, she likes to go to each sleeping person and say their name loudly. Like her Momma, she doesn't want to be the only person awake!

7:15 Breakfast
Once diapers have been changed and everyone has had their morning potty break, we head to the table. Today's breakfast was granola bars (don't judge, they all LOVE them and ask for them daily), Cheerios, bagels with grape jelly, milk, and coffee for Momma!

7:45 Let's Play
The girls head off to their rooms to play for a while. I clean up breakfast and get myself organized for the day.

8:30 TV Time
I usually turn on PBS Kids about this time. The girls love their morning shows and will sit and watch them while I finish getting ready for our day.

9:00 Girls Get Dressed and Ready

9:30 School Time
We always start with a Bible story and prayer. Then we have our first lesson (or two) of the day. Today we did a color/shape coded color sheet and we learned how to write a capital "A". We work on our memory verse. After our lessons we color and read some books then the girls pick up things while I fix lunch.

11:00 Lunch
While the girls are eating, I usually do the dishes and whatever else needs to be done right then. Today I started some laundry and took out the trash. The trash is one of my most dreaded chores. I could do a whole post on the chores I love and the ones I hate.

11:30 Naptime
Laila and Mika lay down for naps in their beds and Peyton had rest time on the couch. I usually let her watch a movie or some more PBS Kids. During naptime, I grab something quick for lunch, check emails, blog, etc. I always make time to snuggle P some before the other girls get up. :)

1:00 Wake Up/Snacks
Laila is usually up by 1:00 so we have a little snack then. I also get to spend some time snuggling Laila when she wakes up. I so treasure this sweet time with her.

1:30 Chores/Errands
This is when I usually go to the store or run our errands. We also do our daily chores during this time. Today we put away our laundry and cleaned the kitchen. I try to get the girls involved in doing the chores around the house. They love helping and I feel like we are teaching them some responsibility by having them help with things at home.

2:30 Story Time and Lessons
We pick up another worksheet or two. And since I have three little girls who love to read books, we make time in our afternoons for more stories.

3:00 Craft Time
Lately the girls have been obsessed with watercolor painting.... so we have been doing that every day. They are actually quite good at it and they feel so proud of their work. I love that they love to create things like I do. I hope they always love to create things.

3:30 Play Time
We usually take the rest of the afternoon to play. I mean, isn't that what kids are supposed to do?! My girls love to play outside and I am happy the weather is cooler now so they can spend more time outside without melting in the heat.

5:00 Clean Up
Jared gets home between 5:30 and 6:00 so I usually start cooking dinner around 5:00. The girls are responsible for cleaning up their toys when I get started with dinner. Once they get their toys picked up they like to do puzzles before dinner is ready. Some days it takes so long to get them to clean up that we don't make it to puzzles.... we barely make it to dinner!

6:00 Dinner

6:45 Bath Time!
I give all the girls a bath together so it makes the process so much quicker. After baths we all gather in one of the girls' rooms and read a story. Then we pray together as a family. This is one of our sweetest moments of the day. I think we all love this time together.

7:00 Mika Goes to Bed

7:30 Laila Goes to Bed

8:00 Peyton Goes to Bed

Once all the girls are in bed I finally get to relax. Ahhhh.

I always wonder what other people's days are like.... And I often wonder how I filled up my days before I had babies. I am so thankful I am able to make this daily memories with my girls.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Time to be Thankful

It is time for me to sit down and pull myself out of this mess. Things have been difficult around our home for a couple of weeks now... well, that's the nice way to put it. While I have started trying to really pinpoint the problems, that isn't something I want to put out there. However, I do need to remind myself of how blessed I really am.

I have three healthy children.
I have a husband who I love more each day and who loves me unconditionally.
I have a wonderful family.
I have a home that is filled with things that are special to my family.
My husband has a wonderful job.
I have friends who would do anything for me and I would do anything for them.
I have a church that I love.
I am a mom.
I am a wife.

I could go on and on and on. God has really blessed us beyond our wildest dreams. I am so guilty of getting wrapped up in the moment dealing with my babies that I lose sight of how blessed we are. We really are.

Today has been so very hard on this Momma. I was finally able to pull myself together and grab some quiet time while the girls are laying down. I actually read a blog post that spoke so directly to me, it was wild. Then I felt like I needed to just be thankful for a bit. And it helps me to be thankful in an organized way, like by writing it out.... and this seemed like the appropriate place.

Now I'm going to curl up with some hot apple cider (yes, I realize it is almost 80 degrees today, but it is still Fall) and one of my Mommy Devotionals and pray naptime lasts a little while longer.

Be thankful.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Right Now...

My kitchen is a staging area for all of the carnivals/parties/projects/etc. that we are involved in. I am beginning to feel overwhelmed. With each bag from the store that is added to the "Keep This Until the Event" Pile, it is becoming harder to cook dinner. I feel like the dishes are staying in the sink longer than usual because I can't get around all the stuff to get them done. My family has eaten two dinners this week on paper plates. Paper plates, y'all! My Nanny would be horrified. :) It has helped with the dish situation though.

Of course, I love being involved in all of these events. I think I just need a bigger house. Ha! Seriously.

I'm considering taking applications for someone to come and hold all of my bags of goodies in their ams and off of my counter, table, stovetop, floor. :)

But more importantly, right now there is a little girl wearing a mashed potato mask who needs my attention. She doesn't have the best fashion sense yet (as evidenced by the cute dress/top and leggings I put on her this morning and the fabulous hot pink crocs she chose to wear with them) but she wears the mashed potatoes well. They are one of her favorite accessories.


Friday, September 16, 2011

My Top Ten Favorite Things...

I have been thinking about all of the things I'm loving right now. Of course my sweet little family is always at the top. {And to be honest, I could fill a top 50 (and more) of things I love about them}

But today I wanted to be completely superficial and talk about the things I love just for me!

1. I LOVE my Kindle. It is serious. :) I have loved books and reading my entire life. As a child my dream was to become a writer. Didn't happen. Sadness. But now I have my Kindle and I have access to so many books. It is delicious. When I travel I don't have to worry about packing enough books so that I don't run out. I have them all in one place. Love.

2. Hair clips. Even though my dear, sweet husband laughs at me, I love wearing cute little flowers and such in my hair. In fact, I sported a red hair poof last Saturday to the Hogs game. It made me feel cute, something that the t-shirt I had to wear took away from me. I am not a t-shirt kinda girl.

3. Burlap. I have visions upon visions of things to do with burlap around my house.... starting with our Christmas stockings. I just need to find the time to bring all of my ideas to life.

4. Fall Candles. I am working hard to burn up what I have left of my spring/summer candles. They are being replaced with the delicious smells of apple, cinnamon, spices, pumpkin.... everything Fall and everything I dream of my home smelling like.

5. Pinterest. Oh my. I never thought I would get as much use out of Pinterest as I am. It is not only really fun, but I have saved so many ideas to my boards that I don't have to worry about remembering them or writing them down on one of hundreds of scraps of paper and throwing them in my planner. It is possible that I spend more time than I should on Pinterest. But what else is a girl to do while the hubby watches game after game after game on tv? {Love you, babe}

6. Gray. I have NEVER been one to wear gray. Or even look at the color. It always felt so drab to me. But now, all of a sudden, I can't help but be attracted to all things gray. Maybe it has something to do with my love for wearing black {not in a dark, depressing or goth way, but in a classy way - at least I hope it's classy} and how gray is basically just another shade of black, right?! :) I even made a gray hair poof.

7. My Life Planner. A couple months ago I heard about a great deal on these too-cute-to-be-true planners. I decided to order one. I didn't know then that I would need that thing Seriously, I refer to it all day long. It is where I keep all my information about all the things that have quickly taken over our lives. I love it!

8. Crochet. I have been crocheting for a few years now. I have always liked it because it was something I could do while Jared and I watched a movie or a tv show or just talked. I finally broke down and made something for myself a few weeks ago.... I love it! It is the perfect shade of Fall Yellow. My dad called it a "mini scarf" which describes it perfectly. I will post pictures of it when it gets cold enough for me to actually wear it. It looks a little silly with my tank tops.

9. My longer hair. I have always been a short hair girl. I decided before my 30th birthday that I needed to do something different. I thought growing my hair out would not only be easy but would maybe make me look younger. So its growing. And it is longer now than it has ever been. Ever. I don't have to wash it every day so that is a huge bonus. The only drawback is that my sparkles {gray hairs} show up a little more when it is long.

10. Meal Planning. I have never been a weekly grocery shopper. I used to spend most of my afternoons trying to decide what to fix for dinner then going to the store to get what I needed for the meal. I finally got smart y'all. I now sit down Monday morning and plan out our meals for the entire week. I basically just pick a meal from our list of family faves and pick a day for it. I have to keep in mind our newly busy schedule and the nights I have to cook really early dinners and such. Then the girls and I go grocery shopping on Monday afternoon and get all of the supplies we need for the week. It has saved loads of time and stress.

There you go. A list of some of the things I'm loving right now. I am so thankful that I am so blessed to be able to enjoy these unimportant things in life. I spent many years not letting myself have anything just for me. It has taken time and lots of urging from special women in my life, but I gave in. I have these things for me... they make me feel a little more sane which makes me a much better wife and mother. Everyone is happy.

What do you love?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A New Season Brings New Things...

Oh how I love Fall.

After the long, hot summers I really get excited about cool mornings, jeans, boots and football! This year is no exception. My home is already decorated for Autumn. I've already made everyone's Fall/Winter hats and I've completed my first scarf, with two more in the works. I.Am.Ready.

With this year's new Fall season brings a new season for our family.

Our girls are getting older. I no longer have an infant or one on the way. We are settled into our little family of five and we couldn't be happier. We are all just content. And that is a nice place to be, isn't it?!

Since we are so comfortable with things, we have decided to add some new activities. Because who wants to just stay comfy? Let's spice things up a little bit! Peyton is playing soccer and Jared is coaching her team. We LOVE it. Seriously, this is one of my most favorite things our family has ever done together. There will be lots of pictures to share, I am sure. We have also started attending homegroup with our church. Jared's work schedule is semi-normal now so we are able to do things on week nights and homegroup was top of our list.

So now our family has gone from spending every evening a home together to having a fairly busy schedule (busy for us, at least). I am so glad I got a planner to keep up with all of our family activities.
We are busy. The good thing is that we do all of these things together as a family (for the most part).

There is excitement in the air.... a changing of season in so many ways. I couldn't be happier.

And since our family is growing up, I'm feeling a little nostalgic. Want to guess what I do when I start to miss my babies being babies.... yep, I go through old pics. Who doesn't?!

Here's a couple of memories of my babies:

Mika Lynn

Laila Whitney

Peyton Lou

Don't you just love Fall?? And memories??

Monday, September 12, 2011

Out At the Barn

While we were at Pappy's house last time we decided to spend some time out at the barn. I never would have imagined that my babies would love being at the barn so much, but boy they sure do! They love to brush the horses, talk to them, bring all the ropes and reigns around and basically do anything to help Pappy.

But most of all they love to ride.

All three of them Love. To. Ride.

Even my little Mika loves it. She bursts out in excited screams when she sees the horses. And she insists on getting her turn to ride.

I am constantly reminded of how much my girls are growing.... especially when I see pictures of them like this. Peyton is getting big enough to ride on her own. She is so confident on the horses.... I pray she is always confident in everything she does.

Laila spent the first month of summer afraid of riding.... now she doesn't want to get off. We love watching the girls find their courage and overcome their fears. I am so thankful that the girls are growing up with such neat experiences.

Their new favorite thing to do at the barn is to ride together. They think it is so much fun. I think they are so much fun!

Mika Lynn even got a chance to show off her solo equestrian skills.... she's a natural. Pappy also taught her a couple of new phrases: "Whoa, Sugar." and "Easy, Sugar." So cute to hear her little voice say those words.

We love going out to the barn with Pappy. We are so thankful that we get these opportunities. And you know it makes Pappy so proud and happy to watch his baby girls develop a love for horses like he has. He keeps trying to get me on the horses. But y'all, every time I ride my rear end hurts for days. Seriously. I'm just happy hanging out on the sidelines with the cameras.


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Summer on the Lake

We spent quite a bit of time on the lake this summer. For the past 4 years I have either been pregnant or had a small baby during the summer. Don't get me wrong, I have totally enjoyed these past few summers. However, I was looking forward to this summer. All of the girls are older and are able to enjoy the boat and the lake more. (After all the fun this summer, I am so excited about next summer).

We spent quite a few weekends plus three full weeks at my dad's house on the lake. It was wonderful! Peyton and Laila love jumping in the water and swimming like little fish. Laila even jumps from the top of the boat with her daddy. No fear.

Even I got to enjoy the water and the sun some. And Mika... oh that sweet girl.... she liked the water, but was happier with a Capri Sun and some Pringles. Love her.

So I thought to commemorate our Summer on the Lake I would do a Top 10.

Top 10 Things I Loved About Summer on the Lake 2011:

10. Sun-kissed skin.

9. Swimming with all three girls.

8. Watching Peyton find her courage in the water.

7. Watching Laila jump from the top of the boat with Jared.

6. Pizza on the boat for dinner.

5. Swimming with our lake friends.

4. Exhausted little girls on the ride back to the dock.

3. Just the five of us taking the boat out early one morning.

2. July 4th on the lake... all day. Ending in a fireworks show.

And the number 1 thing I loved about this summer on the lake is.......

1. Making memories with my family that we will always hold in our hearts.

We will always cherish our times out on the lake. We are so thankful that we are able to spend so much time there and we know what a blessing it is.