Mother's Day Gift Guide under $50

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mother's Day is a special day to honor those mothers in our lives that have made us who we are today. If you are a mother yourself, you get to experience something truly magical. Fantastic artwork. Breakfast in bed with a side of spilled orange juice. Freshly cut flowers from your garden. And lots of extra kisses. I am all-about handmade gifts. Pinterest has some great ideas and they don't have to be ones that take 3 weeks. Whether you are buying a gift for your friend who is expecting her first baby, your godmother, MIL, or your mom, I have some good ideas for you below. I previously included some coupon codes, check them out too!

when your dogs are really barking (kevin from the office), these are amazing. $38



this book has some delicious recipes, and pretty pictures.


something she can be cute and cozy in. classic pj's $34.95


this graphic t is everything. $28


what mom doesn't need a good cup of joe? my personal favorite.


lastly, flowers are always a good idea. handcut from the garden or the market or even 1-800FLOWERS











the third baby

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Tuesday, April 19, 2016





three years and three babies. how is that possible? sometimes i don't even believe it. 

i tried to find some spring/summer clothes this week, but I couldn't remember when the last time I wore clothes in the summer that fit me. I have been pregnant and nursing since September 2011. I can say with certainty that a year ago we told each other we were done after the third. Done and done. I repeated the phrase to my husband after the nausea, the varicose veins in places i didn't know they could be and lack of sleep. I felt it in this past thanksgiving season when I was solo with all three kids for the full marathon; breakfast, lunch, dinner and bed. 

adjusting to three was one of the most challenging and humbling experiences. I am still in this interesting season of parenting...adapting to the changes.

but amelia! 

she is the sweetest most patient little gal. i love her so much! she fits into our puzzle like she was there all along. 

still, 

three babies has meant a lot to me, but the first, it has been hard to cope with no time to myself, which includes sleep. i feel like i almost don't even miss sleep anymore, because i don't remember what uninterrupted sleep is. someone is waking up needing me for something all hours of the day.

 besides coping with bags under my eyes, it means 4 shoes, 3 blankets, 2 water cups, snacks, diapers, wipes, all before walking out the door. then the attractive scene of getting kids into the car. hearing myself say things a hundred times is quite embarrassing. "put your shoes on!" "put your seatbelt on please!" it means the only change of scenery is going upstairs and downstairs in the house, 

three babes means there are a lot of things you thought you would "never" do, but totally do now. iPad on while eating dinner. Check! leaving baby in the car seat for a half hour in the house while you fix dinner. oh your dinner is grilled cheese. again? 

if you could see my diaper bag, or as my husband calls it "lost and never found" it would hold a whole lot of crap. receipts, pouch caps, dinosaurs, opened lipstick (thanks eleanor), a million dried cherries and maybe a diaper, but probably not wipes because i forgot to add the new pack in when the old one ran out. 

three kids feels like way more than two sometimes. someone is left out. someone is needing something and not getting what they need at the moment they need it. 

but, amelia.

she gets me. any time I come into the room with her, i am reminded of pure joy. she teaches me what a blessing it is to have a baby. she gives you the biggest toothless grin when you walk into a room. It's one of those smiles that i don't even feel worthy of. but after a long day with bouncing to and fro, she brings me back to the present. 

this fleeting season of motherhood is one in which i am stretched thin in different ways by each child. it's hard sometimes, because of anxiety and fear and the worry that I am failing are unwelcome friends of mine. But the good far outweighs the hard. I adore this job and getting to have 6 arms to hug and 30 toes to tickle.

Maybe we are finished having kids, but maybe not. We'll answer that at another time. I cannot imagine only having three, and I cannot imagine having four... does that make sense? 
but i know that my hands are full but my heart is fuller. 


mothers day coupon codes

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Thursday, April 14, 2016

may 8 is mothers day! i am all for the handmade gifts for moms, but if you do any extra gifts for the ladies in your life, here are some coupon codes.

Tell her you love her on this felt board!
Letterfolk: use code YOURMOM 15% off

Print a photo for her to have on her nightstand.
Pinholepress: XOXO

Buy some paint. Make her your kids hand print into a butterfly!
Michael's Craft Store: CRAFT41016 $40% off one item





Little Man Bowtie Birthday Party

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When Everett turned one, we had a party in our  backyard. Aaron was deployed so I had a lot of time on my hands. I miss those days of having two naps and time to take a shower without interruptions... Thinking about the kids' May birthdays this year gets me excited to plan things again. Last year, pregnant, moving and in and out of our home, left the birthday scene a bit underdone. Everett is obsessed with wolves lately and eleanor pink. I think those will be the themes we will concentrate on. I am thinking of buying this gathre mat because I know we will use it all the time for our messy/fun life but to act as the table cloth. Also I want to somehow put a duck inside the wolf cake, because in the story the wolf eats the duck. Any suggestions??

Here are some pictures from his first birthday.




















the children are all ok

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Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Since the kids are growing too fast for this mama, and i have too many journals to log everything i, thought it would be nice to have a little update on my peeps.





Everett:

You are the spirited, sensitive, leader, similar to the wolves that you are always talking about. Peter and the Wolf is one of those Russian musical theaters. There is a disney book about it too. When we ordered it from an etsy shop and it came in the mail your face will forever be tattooed in my brain. "Mom, thank you so much! You and dad brought this for me?" You have your days where you like to be left alone and have grown leaps in sharing that with us respectfully. Your day you like to start with waking up around 7 and you ask if dad is here or at work. Once we have the day of the week covered, you like to be by yourself or watching your iPad for a little bit. (Most days I think you could probably sleep another hour, but your sister sometimes wakes you up.) It's not unusual for you to not want to eat right away. Maybe it's because you ate a three course meal in bed before sleep; pouch, fruit bar, banana. Either way, when you finally realize you are hungry, it's a major HANGRY scene and of course I am usually not able to fulfill your request right away. I usually make a breakfast using our favorite Real plates that if you see, inspires some eating. MWF you have school that begins at 8. It's a bit of a stretch for us to get out the door on time since the time has changed, but we make it work. The growth you have shown since the beginning of the school year in getting ready for the day is mind blowing. I remember thinking back in septemeber that we would be 15 and you still wouldn't go pee when you wake up and get dressed. But we each figured out different tricks and now you get those khakis on you love so much with one of your five favorite shirts and we get ready. I must admit I used the iPad as motivation most mornings. I don't have to anymore because you willingly get yourself motivated. After school we eat lunch because you're usually famished. We play, nap/rest depending on the day and the afternoon is up to our imagination. Since the weather has been pretty fair all school year, we have gone outside a lot. Whether we walk around the block and you ride the bike or play with sand, snow, shovels, rocks or rakes, we get outdoors. Especially since your school has not been good about getting you outside. Some of your favorite activities indoors is pretend play and coloring. You are drawn to the dinosaurs, the monster trucks, the legos and even eleanor's babies. If you're not jumping on the couch, you're hoping off of it. The forts we make with all the couch cushions make my heart skip a beat. I'm deathly afraid we will be visiting the ER and that thought of waiting in the lobby with three kids under three is terrifying. Your recovery after an injury used to be like the world was ending, but you're pretty brave. You're the best big brother and own that title well. Just yesterday you told Eleanor she had to do the right thing like you because you were the big brother and leader.  Your favorite books are "dragons love tacos" "hippos eat pancakes" "how i became a pirate" "wolfie" and "counting cockatoos." Your favorite movies lately are probably Big Hero, The Wizard of Oz and Peter and the Wolf. I think that you would really enjoy playing a musical instrument. Watching you get excited when dad comes home is my favorite part of the day too. He makes you laugh, giggle and he is usually ready to play with whatever you have lined up for him. I'm excited to see you play t-ball this summer and have dad coach you. I can already see the transition out of 3 to 4 and I think I am reeeealy going to love the 4's... especially if you still want to nap!

Eleanor


My favorite pink loving girl. Your smile lights up a room and I'm so glad God gave you all that spunk. The last 5 months have been challenging for you at times, especially when Amelia came into the picture. You love her to death, but you demand our attention by the minute. If you are awake, which is always, you want to be snuggling, held or touching me or dad in some capacity. Does that mean you will go as far as stepping on my toes? YES! Most days you are up with the birds, but it's usually before 6. I honestly believe you could go back to sleep, but you have a hard time getting back to bed yourself. Breakfast is first on your list of things to do after diaper changes."Fruit bar or pouch" is your way of communicating that you're hungry. Although, you recently have began to scream "lunch" like everett does when he talks about breakfast, lunch or dinner. It's funny how you really like to use your silverware and napkin. I laugh at how tidy you keep things, but you also don't mind to get sticky or messy. One of your favorite menu items is waffles with syrup. If the syrup is on the waffle, it's not what you want and you will let us know. It has to be in it's own place so you can dip it. I like how you ask for pepper and pepper for your boiled egg whites. You enjoy helping with juicing or the blender. However, you hate how loud the blender is and will cover your ears and say "lawd'. You sit in the little table and chairs with everett to eat, but you always are getting up and following me around. Those chairs are also stools, so if I am not in the kitchen with you, I will hear you dragging it to the counter reaching for my coffee! On days we are running everett to school, you are the biggest helper. You find your shoes and you put them on yourself. If I want to hurry the process and help, you have a fit. You are fiercely independent in that manner. When we take everett to school, you have learned to say goodbye and I love you to him. On Fridays I try to let you come in to the classroom with him, that is if we are not running late. If we have to run errands, it's your favorite thing. When we pass the grocery store, you always say hello. Your newest thing in the car is telling me to "GO!" You have so much to say lately and it really comes out during play time with everett. Some phrases I like "cumon evwettt""wait" "yellybeens" "no charlie" "uhhhhh, I'm mad" "hey pwettty gurl" It seems like everyday you are saying something new, but it's not always the right sounds. You'll get there. You love your grandmas so much and often like to use the phone to call them. If you could have your own phone you would and you would be snapping selfies to send to auntie dra dra. Daddy is your favorite and when he gets home, mom doesn't matter until it's time for bed. Lately you really have taken a liking to your natural instincts as caretaker. You're a good lil mama to your babies, you like to pretend they need diaper changes, or car seat time. If you're not doing that, you are undressing and redressing yourself. I think you change your clothes three times a day and your socks about 6. Maybe it's because your feet are super cold that you want to always be wearing socks or you just like socks, but it's a process. You're going to be 2 next month and it's exciting to see where that road leads. I can see you taking more dates with dad, exploring outside in the backyard and getting toilet trained!!Your favorite books are Brown Bear Brown Bear, Goodnight Moon, and the Pride and Prejudice babylit book. Movies don't keep your attention for long, but you ask to watch Big Hero and Cinderella most.

Amelia



Miss millie girl, you're so adorable and happy. I am in constant awe of how patient and observant you are. As the baby of the group you really aren't super demanding (yet). However, you definitely like to be a part of the group and will let us know if we are leaving you left out. If I could, I would hold you all day. You're a good eater, sleeper, and pooper. Your little golden locks of hair are so soft I want to constantly massage your head. The new baby seat is fun for the whole gang. We like to see you play in the kitchen while I'm cooking, kids are eating or making crafts. I think lately you have been teething which has made for some interesting comments from the kids. "grossey" they say about the drool! Everett makes you laugh and it's become a game to him. He dances for you, does baby yoga with your legs and arms to mom's hesitation. He is also so nurturing in the carseat too. You're lucky you get to look at him in the car, because I think it soothes you. Eleanor is still a question mark with you. Sometimes she makes you laugh, sometimes it's lots of arm pulling and tears. You're rolling all over the floor and sometimes if I can't get to you right away you're rolling all over the peacock room. I have no idea what we will do when you start crawling! You nap in your bassinet or the crib, because on the floor downstairs doesn't work any more with all the commotion. Your drawn to all the lights, and objects on the wall. I think you really enjoy bath time, when you get to the bath, and those legs never stop moving. You even stick out your tongue a little like you're focusing. Dad gets smiles from you when he gets home and if he doesn't come see you right away, you let us know. Sometimes if you see me and you want to be held, you do this completely fake whimper cry. It works every time. 5 months with you and it feels like you were always with us!

making the bed

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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

is it nap time yet? these sheets are on sale now





You know you are like a hundred years old, when your husband makes the bed for you on the weekend. It's like the best thing he can do next to putting the dishes away in the dishwasher. I realize every marriage dynamic is different, but it's nice when the household chores are shared sometimes. . . especially when there are three little peacocks in the house demanding attention. I particularly love how sunday nights at 10pm we find ourselves putting the clean sheets and duvet on the bed together. We usually have the best conversation or memories of our weekend. I like how it's something we do at the same time too. Most days we each are doing something together, but it's usually a separate task. For example, we both are getting into the car to leave for church, but one of us is putting one child in their seat belt and the other has another kid (s) and all the crap. 
Making the bed is like a metaphor for raising these kids. More times lately, we are making the bed in the light of our cell phone flash light and whispering because amelia is sleeping in the bassinet beside the bed. Similar to raising kids, you're kind of in the dark, fumbling around, making sure it all ends up pretty straight. It's definitely easier making the bed with someone else, and a lot more fun! 

June and January

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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

I have been a fan of June and January (previously little hip squeaks) since their knotted headbands were sold in threes on etsy. It was my go to gift idea for my friends having girls. This was before knotted headbands were all over instagram feed! She has grown so big, she has more than just bows! Her clothes appear on celebritys' kids and magazines! They are bright, solid or stripe colors and easy to wash. Kids can play in them or wear them to church. Her May line will have some pretty striped jumpers that will work for boys and girls.

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