Wednesday, July 20, 2016

All Them July Babies ...

If you know us at all, you know that apparently the Husband and I spend a little too much time together in the month of October. Or at least we did in 2007, 2009 and 2011. Because we have birthdays to celebrate on the 9th, 11th and 13th of July. This year Kolt celebrated his 8th Birthday, Kruz celebrated his 6th and Kohen celebrated his 4th. 

Because their Birthdays are so close together, we try really hard to make each of their days special. Sometimes we're able to make the whole day about them with going to spend their Birthday Money and going to their place of choice to eat. And then there are years like this one in which we were consumed with the passing of a very special friend the day after Kolt's Birthday, Travis' School Schedule, attending the funeral on Kohen's Birthday and having our Kid's Crusade at church every night of that week. So this year we kind of just did what we could.

Kolt's Birthday fell on the same morning of the Party, so he chose to make a Dunkin Donuts run with his Daddy and blow his candle out that way. We were all starving after the Birthday Party so we ran off to a new Mexican Spot here in our little town. And since we were out, we took him to Academy to spend some of his Birthday Money. 

On Kruz' Birthday he requested a trip to the "same store as Kolt", GameStop and Toys R' Us. He is very methodical with how he spends his money. If only all 6 Year Olds were like that, right? So we headed to GameStop first for Fifa 2015, because in his words, he knew he could get the '15 Version cheaper than the '16 Version and really they're the same thing. He went to Toys R Us for a new 3DS game and to Academy for some new Nike stuff. And after church that night we went to the pool for a night swim and enjoyed the Birthday Cake he picked out from Publix earlier that day. 

And on Kohen's Birthday he asked all day when his friends were coming over for his party. I tried over and over to explain to him that we already had his party, but he just wasn't having that answer because "this day is my Birthday Mommy". We had this conversation a thousand times. My heart only broke into a thousand pieces when we got to our church for the funeral service for David and he saw so many of our friends and he asked if this was his Party. Bless it. I was so thankful this kiddo was content with some cupcakes at the end of the night when Daddy got home from work. 

And of course, there's the Big Birthday Celebration we had! I believe I counted 38 kids here, not including my own. It's always a fun time with the water slide and all of the families that we have over. 

This year I decided not to feed the crowd and just have snacks. It was perfect! I took advantage of the Buy One Get One Free sales at Publix and scored a ton of variety snack packs. At the end of the day, we went through 80 bags of chips and 38 bags of snacks like Cheez-Itz and Animal Crackers. 

We cut up some watermelon, had popsicles ready to go and had a cookie cake from Great American Cookie and drinks. Bam! Done! Easiest way ever to keep a ton of kiddos content while they wore themselves out! 

I would say Miss Khloe enjoyed that cake too! 

I always look forward to celebrating my babies' Birthdays and always so thankful when it's all over too! Now here's to planning Miss Khloe's Second Birthday ...

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Napping By the Pool ...

I pretty much wore the heck outta my kids today. We pooled it from 11:30 until 4:30. 

With that being said, this is really to show off the adorableness of Khloe Ruth sleeping by the pool today. 

And maybe a few of this Mama and her friends. Because yea, I have friends. 

And that's pretty much it.

This was her Mama, Please Just Let Me Go To Sleep Somewhere Face. She laid down right next to me in the other chair and was out like a light for about an hour or so. 

Cue us Mamas making her this canopy thing to keep her from burning. 
Pure Princess Treatment. 

Now for us Mamas and a few of me and some of my other babies ...

Happy Summer Days to You! I know we're sure havin' 'em!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Lets Talk Over Laundry ...

Right now, my children are all exhausted little humans with no schedule and no bed time.

Anybody else?

Don't get me wrong, I'm loving watching them play basketball in the backyard until they can't see anymore. And I'm loving letting them watch movies at random times during the day and using the pool to be considered "clean". 

But when the exhaustion sets in, the bickering begins. Like the really, really petty kind.

So here was me about 2 weeks ago. Sitting in my bedroom floor during nap time surrounded by about 7 loads of laundry that needed to be folded while the 3 larger of the 5 tiny humans played outside. Cue the backdoor slamming and the bickering. About what? I have no idea. And I really could've cared less. Because here is my rule: if they're you're not dying or bleeding, you are not allowed to interrupt precious nap time.

I heard the door, cringed and trotted down the stairs to resolve the issue.
And it was like this lightbulb went off. 
Clearly they needed some counseling. Some therapy. Some time to talk out the problems. 

And what better way to accomplish that than over laundry. 
All 7 glorious loads. 

So while they folded, I sat on the bed and read my book. 
And while I read and they folded, they were forced to work together as a Team and talk out their problems. It took them well over an hour to fold, hang up and put away all the clothes. 

Some tears were shed from frustration, there was some pointless rolling around in the floor and some pointing out of who was doing more work. But at the end of their first Laundry Therapy Session, they saw how much they got done when they pulled together and worked, when they encouraged one another and by the time they were done they had talked through the fight that brought them inside in the first place. 

So now, when the squabbling starts, all I have to do is say the word laundry and they turn around to figure it out on their own. 

Parenting Win. 

P.S. We have had more than one Laundry Therapy Session.

Like, we just had one today that included Kollin and Kruz. About what? I don't know. But at the end of the Laundry Therapy Session all was right in the world again. 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Another Green Thumb ...

Some of my most favorite childhood memories happened in Gardens.

Growing up, at the top left corner of our yard held our Family Garden. And every year I'd watch my Daddy till the ground, make the rows, plant the seeds and I'd watch it grow. 

I can remember the compost pile and having to run potato scrapings up there after my Mama would make mashed potatoes for dinner. I can remember running through the corn stalks and playing hide and go seek in them, picking okra and watching the tomatoes go from green to red.

Then over at my Grandma and Grandpa's house stood their garden and in my eyes, it was always so grand. And might I add, it's still there today. They're 86 and 91 and still grow their garden every year. Talk about Life Goals! 

I can remember going to Grandma and Grandpa's house and sitting in a circle while we all shucked corn and Grandma at the sink cutting it off the ears to make her Cream Corn. I can remember walking with her, scissors in hand, to cut fresh gladiolas for our kitchen table. I can remember watching my Grandpa, squatted down, picking his crops. 

A few years ago Travis built us a Box Garden and that first year we had it, for the space we were given, I actually did pretty good. I had tons of okra, zucchini, cucumbers, squash and bell peppers. All of our favorites! 

The second and third year were blah. Heck, I didn't know you needed to fix the soil and add more to it and not plant the same plants in the same spot two years in a row and yada, yada, yada. Obviously, I had a lot to learn! 

I was determined to get my green thumb out again this season and get some homegrown food. And what do you know? Kohen is obsessed with our little garden. Reminds me of me. Every morning he helps me water the plants, checks to see if our squash grew, counts the prickly cucumbers and watches the tomatoes turn from green to red. 

This was one thing I always wanted to be a part of our household; knowing where food comes from and being able to watch something go from a tiny seed to something on our kitchen table. And I'm thankful we're doing just that ...

Kohen's love for Gardening goes from the crops in the morning to the flowers in the evening. Give that kid a water hose and he's as content as can be. 

It's like ... our Bonding Time

My heart gets all mushy from memories and he gets all excited and we end up hugging it out and he says, "I love you Mommy" and then makes those kissing sounds and his adorable little fishy lips and then its the perfect timing because it's usually bedtime after the flowers get watered and everybody is in a lovey mood and I think maybe for a split second he isn't an Emotionally Unstable Toddler and ... I'm runnin' on here. But you get the picture.

Gardening and Flowers and Kohen are good for my Soul. 

The end. 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Starting Summer Off The Right Way ...

It happens every year. Sometime in April it hits me that Summer time is coming.

And that I want those next couple months to be E P I C. 

And usually by the time I blink, it's September and we're already back in school. And there I am kicking myself for still being pale as a ghost, not having used the heck out of our Neighborhood Pool and wondering where the heck time went. 

And so this year, as usual, I wanted it to be a good one. But unlike the other Summers, I'm actually doing a pretty good job at keeping the good times rollin'.

We kicked off the Summer with vacation and really there is no better way to do it than that. 

Since we've been home from Florida, we've spent lots of time with Auntie Am and our cousins Haley, Macey and Brooks. Turns out, for this Planner Mama, that last minute trips to Slices for pizza and the playground can be great for the soul.

 And of course, we've had Pool Dates too.  

The Summer keeps getting better and better! 

We've had more Pool Dates with more friends and the boys look like little Indians with white hair. 

And I'm not pale.

And Khloe has THE most adorable bikini tan lines ever. 

We've already skipped more nap times than I can comprehend and just played until dark. 

The boys did Vacation Bible School last week and as nervous as I was that Kohen would not stay since he is a bit of a Mama's Boy, he left me hangin' every morning with no kiss and no hug, just a Bye Mommy. I was undecided as to whether or not to be happy about this. They had a blast like they do every year. We are so thankful for First Baptist of Locust Grove and all they do to make each year better and better! And in an effort to make the Summer E P I C, we made a special trip for donuts their last morning to celebrate the great week they'd had!

We've had popcorn right before dinner and bed times have gone out the window. I was reminded of that as I listen to the boys yelling on the couch watching the NBA Finals Game 5. Basketball is the newest obsession around here. Lord help me. 

We've Road Tripped it to Tennessee. And maybe this is all kids - I don't know - but for mine, staying in a hotel for a night is like, the best thing ever. So this past weekend, we were like the coolest parents ever. 

So yea. So far, we're killin' this Summer. 

Working on making it one for the books.