Tub time…

The tub in our master bath has been used two times in 5.5 years. But just because people aren’t taking baths in it – doesn’t mean it’s not being utilized. Each of our babies have been fascinated by throwing things in the tub. At any given time there is clothing, brushes, cups, hair products and toys in the tub. It’s often full of randomness; when I can’t find something, I check the tub.

Briggs spends his morning while Steve and I are getting ready crawling the edge and tossing more items in. Its his favorite spot in the house right now.  He’ll grow out of it soon – all the other kids did. But right now, I know just where to find him. Childhood is too short.

Jungle Gym Jungle Gym

Paint fiasco…

I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit that Hallie’s room still hasn’t been painted since her insulation fiasco last August. I have to explain to everyone why there is a large patch of drywall along one whole wall. I meant to paint it sooner. But I wasn’t quite sure if we were sticking with blue or choosing a new color and quite frankly it was out of sight out of mind.

But like most unfinished projects, at some point I get annoyed that I’m having to take it off a list (because everything else on the list was completed) and write it again at the start of a new list. I’m tired of writing, “Paint Hallie’s room”. I’ve made it my goal to get it done before school gets out which I thought was completely realistic until I tried deciding a color. I painted two of my very favorite grays (the two on the right) that I’ve used in other rooms and they just didn’t work like they have in other rooms. It was as if they were a completely different color.

So I rushed out on Saturday morning and grabbed a new sample (on the left) – a color I’d seen in a friend’s house and I was sure it was the color I would use. I painted it on the wall and it wasn’t dark enough. Hallie's paint update

I painted the samples on other walls just to see if the lighting made a difference. (notice the patched drywall above the samples!) I wasn’t sold.

I went out this morning and grabbed two more samples – less gray and more aqua in color. (Hallie’s choice).  I should have known better than to grab a sample from home depot – I’ve never had luck when they try to color match from someone else’s book. Both the samples went up and I think we might have found a winner.

Hallie's paint update

The problem – I had them match another brand and they completely botched the color match…but we actually like the botched color. So now I’ve got to figure out how to get Dunn Edwards (where I buy all my paint) to match the botched color from Home Depot – which was trying to match an original Dunn Edwards color. Confusing to say the least. Hopefully we can figure it all out because I’m afraid if we don’t get this room painted soon it’s going to look like this until summer ends!

Cinco de Mayo Sugar Hangover…

I find myself making statements to my kids that I’m not entirely sure are true…but I believe they might be true. For example – I have told them for years that eating lots of sugar will make them sick. I am not against candies or cookies, but sometimes it’s all too much. I work to teach my kids moderation, but they’re kids and they’re getting candy from everywhere it seems and it feels like they just eat so much. So I throw out the statement, “You’re going to make yourself sick”. I think it goes in one ear and out the other. But after this weekend, Bennett might just believe me.

Bennett had celebrated Cinco de Mayo all day at school. He gave very few details but told me it was awesome.  Later that evening, we went to a friend’s house to celebrate – Cinco de Mayo is a popular holiday around here.

Bennett was running around, swimming, playing with friends. Just as the pinatas came out Bennett was in the bathroom not feeling well. I came in to comfort him; trying to gauge just how sick he was – his behavior 20 minutes earlier gave no indication he wasn’t feeling well.

It wasn’t long before he was losing his lunch and his dinner – and there was a lot. But oddly there was nothing of substance in all his throw-up. I started to question what he had eaten. He proceeded to tell me at school he drank 6 cups of soda, ate a popsicle, candy and cookie, had some of his birthday candy after school and then proceeded to drink two more sodas that evening with some chips and salsa. That’s what was in his belly. Nothing of substance and a whole lot of sugar. A sugar level far exceeding anything he’s probably experienced. And he kept telling me, “I don’t know why I drank that much soda.” (he never drinks soda, so one soda would have sent his system into shock.)

I got him home, tucked him into bed. He insisted his belly didn’t hurt anymore and wanted to go back to the party which I kindly declined. I reminded him why its so important to watch what we eat so our bodies stays healthy and strong. I figured I might as well strike while the iron was hot and reiterate that much sugar is not good.

He agreed with me as he lay in his bed, but I wasn’t sure how long he’d remember.

The next evening he was at a friend’s swimming party. He came home as proud as could be, “Mom, they tried handing me a Gatorade and I laughed and asked for water instead.” At least he remembered 24 hours later – give him a couple more days and he’ll probably forget his sugar induced vomit.

I’m now left with trying to come up with an incentive program to limit the candy/soda intake on their terms, something to motivate them. Time to get creative.






Family snapshot…

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Every now and again I like to take a snapshot of what is current with our family. Here’s our list:

LOVING: Evening walks. Most nights we make our way outside. The three older kids ride their bikes and Steve and I walk the stroller with the two youngers. It gets us out of the house before bedtime which is a relief. We often run into neighbors which means our kids end up playing. And the weather is beautiful and we know it’s not going to last much longer. Sometimes it’s’ shoes optional. Other times it’s pants optional!

DREAMING: Remodeling our kitchen. It’s been on my wish list for a while – perhaps since we moved into the house. I understand its not going to be cheap so I’ve been saving for years. And then something comes along that requires using those funds. So it gets spent and then I keep saving. Its a one-step-forward-two-steps-back kind of process. But I’ll get there someday and in the meantime I dream of how awesome and amazing I’m going to make it. The problem is the longer I dream, the larger the project becomes!

WEARING: Flip flops. I’m tired of stinky socks and sand coming home from school. Unless it’s PE day – they’re in flip flops. Me too. And I’ve become the mom that buys 4 pairs of black flip flops from Old navy so as a kid loses a shoe or two, we can still find a match!

READING: I just finished reading the More of Less and I’m moving on to Essentialism. Steve is reading Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future. Hallie is reading the Diary of Anne Frank. Hunter is reading one of the series of “Stink” books.

WATCHING: TV is sparse here but we make the exception for Survivor. While I’m working on the computer I like to have something playing in the background, I just started the Gilmore Girls series again. I’m embarrassed to admit to how many times I’ve seen it, but it gives me warm fuzzies. The kids love watching episodes of Studio C. Also Moana and Trolls have been on repeat for two months.

LISTENING TO: Because the kids are obsessed with Moana and Trolls – it’s also the only thing we listen to. When Briggs hears the Trolls soundtrack, his body starts moving and it just won’t stop.

PRACTICING: Handwriting. I’ve taken an online calligraphy class and I loved it, but it takes practice. Tons of practice. I find myself without paper or pens practicing with my finger every where I go. Like mother, like daughter – Hallie has also been practicing calligraphy and I have no doubt she’ll pass me up in no time.

modern calligraphy

DOING: Purging the house. It’s a daily activity for me. Usually it’s something small like a closet shelf or drawer, but I try to make a daily effort. We’ve also been working on the yard and outdoor projects before we hibernate for summer.

NEEDING: More sleep. Everyone in the house needs more sleep. I go to bed too late. Steve gets up too early. And although we stick to strict bedtime schedules the kids seem to be getting up earlier and earlier as the sun rises. And Briggs is often only taking one nap a day. Let there be sleep.

PLANNING: Our summer vacation. It is going to be long with a lot of time in the car and we’ve been planning it for a while. Trying to coordinate with siblings and family reunions and mission farewells and mission homecomings and friends…it took some serious planning. But we’ve got a plan and it’s been several weeks since anything has changed so I think it’s set.

EATING: Red Roasted Pepper Hummus dip from Costco with Pita chips. We all love it. And we finally found a greek yogurt we really like – Oikos triple berry.

EXCITED ABOUT: After all of our planning – we’re pretty excited for our summer vacation. I always look forward to my Idaho time every year and this year is no exception.

SHOPPING FOR: Kid’s tennis shoes. Their shoes made it through the school year, barely, and now they’re in need. I hate buying new shoes going into summer, but they’re definitely going to need them before school starts. I’ve been scouring Last Chance hoping to score a deal. No luck. I’ll keep trying!

Fiesta Birthday Party…

Bennett participates in a dual language program at school with most of his friends so it only made sense to capitalize on his love for Mexico right now with a Fiesta birthday party. It was hard to find a day that his friends could join him and it just so happened that the best day only gave me two days to plan. Not ideal – but it really limited the amount of time and energy I spent on the party which I realized wasn’t all that bad!

I did make time to design an invite – that I then texted to all the mothers. I did this for the last two parties and it’s my favorite.

Fiesta Birthday Invite

Fiesta Birthday Party

Fiesta Birthday Party

Fiesta Birthday Party

Keeping 6-year-olds entertained can be difficult but we had enough activities that there wasn’t enough time for them to assemble their pitchforks. 😉

I designed “Fiesta Bingo” cards and we used black beans as the markers. We probably could have played this the entire time and the kids would’ve been happy.

Fiesta Birthday Party

Steve read the book Skippy Jon Jones in his best Spanish accent. He’s entertaining to listen to.

We did some taste testing. I went to a Mexican market and purchased several items for the kids to try. All the packaging is in Spanish so I really had no idea what I was purchasing – I relied on persuasive packaging. Out of all the things the kids tried – Mangoes were there favorite. Everything else was an unfamiliar taste and not nearly as sweet as what they are used to. Most the kids spit out the candy they tried, evidently they don’t like chili powder in their candy!

Fiesta Birthday Party

Fiesta Birthday Party

We played pin the tail on the donkey with a color engineering print from Staples. There was all sorts of giggling as they watched their friends place the tail in the wrong places.

Fiesta Birthday Party

And what’s a fiesta party without a piñata – filled with American candy of course! Here is Bennett’s poor hitting form – but he nailed the intensity!

Fiesta Birthday Party

He was happy as could be with his Jarritas soda and his deep fried tortillas with cinnamon/sugar posing as his cake – not to mention he was sporting his favorite shirt.

Fiesta Birthday Party

Fiesta Birthday Party

Fiesta Birthday Party

He talked about his birthday party for months. We planned it in two days. And within an hour and a half it was over. It was quite possibly one of the easiest birthday parties I’ve thrown together. Feliz cumpleaños Benito Panchito. (What his Spanish teacher calls him!)

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