After school snacks…

After school snacks are a thorn in my side. Each kid comes home “starving” and yet the ask for a fruit snack to satisfy their hunger. Then they manage to fill up on so many snacks that by the time dinner rolls around their shockingly not hungry. Go figure.

At the start of the school year, I planned a couple snacks they could rotate through. After just a few days, the kids came home famished and they asked if they could open the large bag of pretzels. Sure.

To my surprise, that large bag was empty in a short amount of time. I might have let it pass but at dinner that evening when I asked a child to eat their salad, they told me they were too full. Clearly too many afternoon snacks.

Snack time

So I stopped buying “snacky” foods. Instead, I filled a large tupperware with different veggies. Carrots, peas, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers…it changes with whats in season. But I always keep it stocked. They can eat them plain or with ranch dip or hummus. The best part about it – they can eat as much as they want. I will never stop them grabbing the tupperware and going to town on it.

At first there were so many protests. The first couple days they came home and the first thing they asked was, “What can we have for snack?” I smiled and reminded them there was a tupperware of veggies waiting for them. And then they got used to it. We have gone through more veggies in the last month and a half than we did the first 6 months of the year. Occasionally I’ll surprise them and tell them they can pop some popcorn when they get home or perhaps eat the leftover treat from the night before – and you would think it was Christmas by how excited they get. But most days it’s the veggies and I love that it’s no longer a fight!

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Making progress…

We’re a little over a week into the kitchen/playroom/office remodel and although demo is relatively fun – it’s still hard work and we had a lot to demo. At this point we have a whole section of the house taped off with plastic – where the kids can’t access anymore. Steve is now second guessing the whole project! ūüėČ

We started with the playroom demo. We let the kids help kick off the remodel project by hitting hammers against the wall and they were so excited to get the party started. By the third day, they were moving bricks out of the playroom and suddenly the remodel wasn’t nearly as much fun.¬† We love to include them in the projects and we have found working together to be beneficial for our family. The trick is finding tasks that are age appropriate. Hallie, Hunter and Bennett are great workers and are helpful in moving stuff to the trash. Cannon’s ability to help is more limited but he was able to move some bricks. Briggs is at an age where we just try and keep him out of the space.

We had friends bring their kids over to help move the brick. Watching the kids stand in a brick line, passing from one to the other, was great and they were so proud of themselves by the time they finished the pile.

As part of the remodel, the cabinets and countertops needed to go. I called a couple rehab places to see if they wanted them but it didn’t work out with any of them. So, I posted the kitchen for free on craigslist. The whole thing. Someone would need to show up with manpower to carefully remove them all, but they would be rewarded for their efforts. I had so many calls within the first ten minutes of the ad, I had to pull the ad. Some man, who lives with his aging mother, came and disassembled everything and drove away with it all in a uhaul. He’s going to paint them and install them in his mother’s place. It took him two whole days. It was a win-win. He got a new kitchen and we didn’t have to demo it!

With the cabinets gone, we went to work on the kitchen.

Over the last week, we’ve spent many evenings covered in drywall dust. (It’s a good thing this space is tented to contain all the dust.) We’re removing several non load bearing walls to open up the space, which meant all the drywall needed to come down. Have I mentioned we have great friends? They showed up multiple nights to lend a hand. Hopefully we get this project moving along so we can go back to playing pickle ball with them in the evenings!

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End of the pool season…

We’ve had an unusually¬†warm September – which means our pool season has been extended a few weeks from previous years. Usually by Labor day it’s cooling off enough that the kids lose interest because the water is “cold” – cold compared to the hot tub it’s been all summer!

But our evenings are finally cooling off which means the water temperature is dropping as well. My bet is this will be the last weekend of our pool season and so we’re going to go out with a bang and celebrate Hunter’s birthday. Bring on the pool inflatables and screaming kids!

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Little Red hen…

He worked hard at preschool to make that little loaf of bread and yet he willingly shared it with everyone in the house. Little red hen day at school means I get a full day of an overly helpful child. Sometimes it last two days because the teacher reminds them when they go back to school what it means to help the Little red hen!

Little Red Hen

Little Red Hen

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We started off last weekend with a bang…using hammers. You see that beautiful striped wall that was once the home of our alphabet wall – well, it was coming down and the kids were happy participants to leave their handprint and signature only to knock holes in it minutes later. They are all too eager to help with all the demolition. Steve and I on the other hand are on day three and exhausted and we still have more to do.


My neck is already cramping thinking about the popcorn ceiling that needs to be scraped on our vaulted ceilings. Why did anyone ever think that was a good idea!? I scraped the office ceiling a while back and we’ve got four bedrooms left that need to be scraped. (which is going to have to wait – I’m only working on the playroom right now!)

We’ve been waiting for this day for quite some time. In fact it was exactly one year ago (from the demo day pictures above) when I had a contractor come over to walk through the remodel project – going through timelines, process and figuring out what we could do ourselves. The very next day I landed in the hospital for a few days which set me back months and the remodel project was put on hold. So many doctors visits, so much lab work, feeling not like myself and exhausted for so long.

What a difference a year makes! Timing is funny and as badly as I wanted this project a year ago – for so many reasons it’s been good that we waited. I now feel so much better and have energy again. Our family has grown up a bit which makes this process easier. Steve and I are both mentally in a better place.¬† And we’re ready to take on the chaos that comes with a remodel. (I say that now – probably won’t feel the same in two months!) More pictures to come!


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