Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Having an older brother...

Having an older brother means you will always have a bin full of cars. Even when your friends have dolls and ponies.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

We are grateful...

We are grateful in our home today. I put up this poster on our fridge a few weeks ago with high hopes of filling it all up with our gratitude. We did it as much as we remembered, but weren't as diligent as my original plan! :) But still, I love looking at it and seeing all the sweet things that my family members have written. The very first thing Tucker wrote, all on his own, was 'Geses' (Jesus). So sweet! It will definitely be a tradition and hopefully we'll be better next year! And of course, Taylor had to add her two cents to it!
We spent the glorious day at my dad's house eating delicious foods, relaxing, chatting and skyping with family members, playing and launching kids in the air and just having a good time. We also watched the movie 'Tangled' which I loved. It was a wonderful, low-key day. And of course, with my dad at the helm, the food was to die for! :) We are so spoiled!
I am grateful for kind and generous parents.
I am grateful for a kind and loving husband who is the best dad ever. He not only wants to spend time with our kids, but he enjoys it. He is supportive and understands my needs and I'm grateful that 8 years ago I decided to hitch my wagon to his. My life has been blessed for it! I am also grateful that he makes me laugh almost every day! :)
I'm grateful for tradition. I made my grandma's pumpkin pies for the first time and I was shocked that they were just as good as when she used to make them! :) (It's ok, you can be impressed!) :) I am grateful for a wonderful extended family whom are my friends.
I am grateful for friends. I got to hang out with this lady all weekend and we had so much fun! She is one of my oldest and dearest friends and I got to meet her little man, Ryder who is two months old-he is so sweet! I'm grateful for her and the time we've shared and the love and support. She has helped me through tough times. I am also grateful for my new friends. Some of my best friends I've only been friends with for the past few years. I am lucky to be around some pretty amazing people, old and new. I love my friends, I feel so supported and loved all the time!
It was also Tuckers actual birthday, but with all of the past celebrations, we kept it low key for him. He got to open a package from my mom in the morning and we played with his new things until we went up to my dad's house in the afternoon. (More on him in another post!)
I am grateful for my two beautiful kids. This little boy is so sweet and kind and is seriously the best big brother. He is always thinking of Taylor and I love watching them together. They genuinely love each other. I am lucky to be their mom!

The day before Thanksgiving, on Wednesday, Tucker's preschool had a little Thanksgiving feast where they got to eat some yummy snacks and learn about the first Thanksgiving meal. The parents were invited, so of course, Taylor and I went. They made pilgrim hats and bonnets for the boys and girls and Taylor even got one. When I saw how cute they were, I had to get a picture:
I sure do love these cuties! I have a lot to be grateful for!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

November so far...

Some exciting November happenings so far...
This was the little's on 11.11.11 @11:11am. Watching cartoons. exciting. I couldn't even get them to look at me.
My dad got home from Alaska! Very Exciting! Taylor was so excited to see him. She just kept on saying Pop, Pop, Pop and pointing at him. She went right to him.
My mom sent Tucker an early birthday present. She got him an Auburn University Tiger pillow pet. He was SO excited. It completes his Auburn collection; to go along with the pillow and blanket she has made him. He was watching TV in complete matching style one afternoon! Thanks grandma! :)
Beautiful flowers are gracing my kitchen table thanks to a wonderful friend in my ward...
This little girl inherited a dolly, her first. Two actually; twins! She loves them. She is such a cute little mommy to them. I didn't think she had it in her, but she is quite motherly! :) Thanks Katie!
She looks like this quite a bit. I love this face. Everything is exciting to her! :)
Our weekely FHE's in the hottub are starting up again. I love it! We have so much fun in the hot tub. :) This is actually Taylor's first time in, I wouldn't let her in last year. She loved it. She saw Tucker going under water and couldn't be left out. She knew exactly what to do!
She plugged her nose right away...
And in she went. Over and over and over again!
I love having this little girl as my buddy all day. Here she is ready to get in the car to run errands with her book and her blankie! We make a great pair! :)
And these are all ready to go to Tuckers preschool tomorrow with him as they celebrate his b-day! :) They are delicious!
It's been an exciting month so far! :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

How to Party like a Pirate...

Tucker's birthday falls on Thanksgiving day this year. Because of that I wanted to do something a little bit extra special for him to celebrate his day. After all of his talk for Halloween and wanting to be a pirate (which he didn't even end up being!) It got me thinking about a pirate party for him. I didn't even realize that pirate parties were so popular, but I found a TON of ideas on line to throw the best pirate party ever! :) (That and the dollar store had a TON of pirate stuff as well, which was a bonus!) Kathryn offered her house for the venue and we got to work planning.
First, you need the perfect invite. I found these at target, and fell in love! I told him he could invite 5 friends, no more! He chose his friends and they each got one of these babies... :)
Kathryn decorated her house so cute! I know Tucker felt special. Here was her front door as you walked up to it...
Up close, good use of an extra invitation...

The table was set to have some good pirate's grub. Pizza and veggies and apples and dip. All thanks to Kathryn and my dad who provided the food! It helped out a TON, so THANK YOU!

When you first walked into her house, this is what you saw. The boys were a little weary at first. Ben told them that it was his brother, Deadhead Larry skin and bones. My friend Danna pointed out that SKIN and bones doesn't really fit the skeleton. So we changed his name to Deadhead Larry had skin and bones. :) By the end of the night the boys had warmed up to him and he was a hit! :)
Cupcakes I made with pirate flags (homemade-toothpicks, stickers and black construction paper)
Oh, and you also need a great host. Kathryn and I wore our pirate best for the occasion! Thank you again Kathryn for letting us destroy your house!
I also made this treasure map for the treasure hunt that I put together for the boys. I had three games set up that they had to do and after they did each activity they got a clue to where the next activity was. The first one was a game I found that is pin the treasure chest on the treasure map. Whoever got closest to the X won. Then they went and put together a pirate puzzle-one that I already had at our house. For their third activity, they had to walk the plank. I borrowed a kiddie pool from a friend, and put this together. I was going to fill it up with water and put toy alligators in it, but we had to move it out of the way a few times, so it was empty. Not the same effect, but the boys still had fun! :)
Here they are walking the plank:

After walking the plank they got the final clue to find the treasure. The treasure was in the ship in the basement. Yes, I made this out of a refrigerator box! :) I searched everywhere for one and finally found one at Home Depot. I've heard they are hard to come by, so always check Home Depot! :) I also found a Youtube video on how to turn a refrigerator box into a pirate ship. That came in handy! A little Duct tape, some scissors and a Sharpie, and viola! :) I was pretty proud of myself! :)
In the treasure chest in the ship each boy got a goodie bag with (chocolate) gold tab-loons, an eye patch, a pirate hat, and some treasure! They loved it! And they almost destroyed that ship by the end of the night! It got lots of wear and tear! :)

Kathryn had a huge wrestling mat in her basement, which is what the ship was on, so of course, the funnest thing to do on it was this:
And here are all the boys with deadhead Larry...
After lots of running around and playing and being crazy pirates, we finally got to enjoy the cupcakes. (notice my sweet frosting job, I'm a pro!) :)
Cute birthday boy...

And that is how you party like a pirate, my friends. The End.

Friday, November 11, 2011

these two...

I love my babies! A lot of the time they play so well together.
A lot like this-watching a movie in Tuckers bed one morning...
But then of course, it gets to be like this a lot, too...

This thing is little miss independent...
I was so proud of myself this year for conference. I had snacks and treats and crafts and games all ready for the kids. I was going to do a post just all about conference. But these are the only pictures I took of the weekend. But I think they sum up our favorite things about conference: yummy food and pj's. OK, our second and third favorite things about conference. The first being, of course, listening to the prophets! :)

Refusing to eat at the table, insisting on eating on the floor...I don't know what I'm going to do with her some days!
I heard Tucker laughing and laughing one day and went in to find Taylor tackling him and tickling him. It makes my heart so happy to see this.
This little thing loves to draw. All day she is asking me for a pen or crayons. I can always tell where she has been drawing, because she just draws all of these little circles over the whole page. She is so funny, she will just spread out anywhere to color.
We have dance parties EVERY day. No joke, Every day! Right around that time of day that I have to banish them to their rooms for my own sanity, and so I can get dinner done. I can almost always guarantee that I will hear phineas & ferb, spongebob square pants, imaginations movers or the cars soundtrack music coming from Tuckers room. Those are his favorite CD's. They jump on the bed and dance all around and love it. Most of the time I get dragged in somehow, but sometimes I actually get to get something done while they dance! :) I love this dance time in our family. Usually they (or we) are in there dancing when Ben gets home from work. Oh, and the lights have to be off, and only the lamp light on! Tucker insists.

I took these pictures before church the other day. They just looked too cute to pass up! :)

Since I've been trying to focus on being thankful lately, these two are definitely at the top of my list! :) I am so lucky!