Thursday, May 30, 2013

It's Hot Outside!

We are having summer weather today with temperatures near ninety!  Kate loves playing in water, and this water table is always fun for her.
This is the first time she has ever played with a water squirt toy.  She kept squirting herself in the face with that little flower, and she thought it was SO funny!  I was laughing at her laughing!

While we were outside, this gorgeous butterfly flitted around us for the longest time.  I was surprised that it stayed for so long.  Kate squealed and pointed and tried to grab, and yet the butterfly kept hanging around.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

STEM Day Rockets

Today was STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) Day at our elementary school, and I was lucky enough to spend the morning designing and launching rockets with Collin's class.  


Collin's rocket flew eighty-five feet!  He was very happy with that number.  The farthest launch was two hundred feet, but most of the rockets flew between fifty and one hundred feet, and many of them did not fly at all.  The poor artsy creative kids who tried to make their rockets unique ended up with rockets that did not fly, while the kids who tend to be more scientific and precise were successful.  That's life, kids.  Rocket scientists are in that field for a reason.

It was a fun morning, and I'm happy I was able to be there.

You can see a YouTube tutorial on how to make a paper rocket that flies here:

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


I couldn't get him to smile or even make a normal face, so this is the picture that will represent sixteen!
Sixteen is one of those ages (like 1, 5, 10, and 13 -- I can't go past that because that is all I have personally experienced as a mother) that just hits you really hard in the chest and makes you swear that there is no way that much time has passed already.  Unfortunately, no matter how much I try to hold on to time, it just keeps on going.

In the past few months, Tyler has completed driving school and found a job washing dishes at Fiesta.  It's amazing to me that he is old enough for these things, but if I look at him, all six feet of him, I really shouldn't be surprised.  When did he get so tall?

So, on to the birthday stuff.

Tyler requested steak, mashed potatoes, and corn for his birthday dinner.  I found a few different cake recipes that I thought might appeal to Tyler, and he chose the Neely's Cookies and Cream Cake.

I was nervous about the recipe because the reviewers either loved it or hated it, and some of the comments stated problems with the cake falling apart, getting stuck to the pans, and having no flavor. I made sure to flour the pans really well and check to see if the cake was done before the thirty minutes passed.  I had no problems at all, and everyone LOVED the cake.  The only change I made was to the frosting; I used one less cup of confectioners' sugar because a lot of the reviewers said it was too sweet, and it came out great.

How sweet is this picture?  I love that he adores her so.  This is a much better representation of sixteen and Tyler in general.  

Tom and I took Tyler and Hailey to see Brad Paisley (Lee Brice and Chris Young were the opening acts) in concert earlier this month as a surprise birthday present.

Tyler and Hailey had seats in the pavilion, and Tom and I had lawn seats.  Tyler and Hailey had a great time, and Tyler said it was a great birthday present.  Tom and I enjoyed the concert too.  For some reason, I did not take any pictures that night, but it was fun and the music was great.

Happy Birthday, Tyler.  I hope that every day of sixteen is full of fun and happiness.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Buttonwood Park Zoo

Kate and I met Laura and Harper at the zoo last Tuesday.  Kate had been to the zoo before, but this was definitely the first time she really enjoyed the experience.  She is still talking about it!  The nice thing about Buttonwood is that it is small, therefore it is just the right size for toddlers.  We saw all of the animals and made it home just in time for nap.

I only got a few pictures.  I wish I got a picture of the black bears because Kate has mentioned them every day since our visit.  One of the bears was playing with a ball and Kate thought that was just the funniest thing.  There was also a woodpecker (no picture of that either) that kept flying into the net surrounding it's enclosure; every time it did this I jumped and Kate laughed.

Here are the pictures I did get:

Kate and Harper on the bear in the above picture.  Kate was not too sure about this, but Harper liked it.

I'm looking forward to going back soon.  The train was not running this time because they are fixing all of the walkways; I think Kate will LOVE the train!!


Reagan drew this great picture of Kelly using chalk pastels in art class.

It came out great.  She is very proud of her work.


Sunday, May 12, 2013

Eighteen Months to Twenty Months

Kate is twenty months today!!!  More than two months ago I began putting together a post about her at eighteen months, and I never finished it.  I'll leave the details about her at eighteen months and continue with where she is now.

At eighteen months, Kate
- adores her siblings; she has from the beginning, but now she is always looking for them and asking for them
- makes funny faces
- is usually happy
- is a pretty good sleeper; she typically sleeps twelve hours at night and is usually in her crib sometime between 6:00 PM and 7:00 PM.  She also naps about two hours each day, usually from 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM.
- still fits in 12-18 months, but is wearing some 18-24 months too
- is talking more and more; she now puts two words together
- climbs on the leather chair, the ottomans, and the kitchen chairs; I am a total wreck when she climbs on the kitchen chairs because I don't want her to fall onto the ceramic tile
- makes a mess faster than any of my other children ever did; she loves to empty drawers and cabinets
- likes to dance
- prefers to be naked, or at least just in a diaper
- loves to eat and eats quite a bit

At twenty months, Kate now tries to put words together to explain something that happened.  Today, Kate said, "poop, rug, Daddy bath" to explain that she pooped on the rug and then Daddy gave her a bath.
- she no longer fits in 12-18 months, everything she wears is 18-24 months; size 2 is WAY too big though
- she often says, "I don't know" and that is my favorite phrase from her right now; it's very cute
- colors every day, several times a day
- knows most colors (this is probably because we color A LOT)
- is still a great sleeper following the same sleep schedule that she did at eighteen months
- her favorite foods are scrambled eggs, hot dogs, and pizza, but she eats a lot of fruits and vegetables and eats a lot of the meals I make
- tries to be like Reagan a lot, she really likes to dance with Reagan and it is very cute to watch her follow Reagan's lead
- knows what she wants and makes it clear
- takes a fall better than any of her siblings ever did (or maybe better than they do now)
- enjoys playing outside and asks to go outside often
- loves cars and baby dolls; she is very girly with a little bit of Tomboy in her
Kate is the sweetest little girl.  She is quick with kisses and hugs, and just loves everyone so much.  She is such a joy to spend the day with, and I love to be the recipient of so much sweetness.

Mother's Day

I woke up to special treatment this morning (after a special shopping spree yesterday)!  A hot cup of chai was delivered to me in bed, and while I enjoyed it, the dishes I left in the sink overnight (yes, I do that sometimes, more often than I will admit actually) were cleaned, the toys were all put away, and the kids' bathroom was cleaned.  That was all fantastic!

Later in the morning, we went to Grandma Susan's house for a wonderful brunch.  It was so nice to see everyone and enjoy a beautiful day together.

My girls in matching dresses

I didn't get pictures of everyone.

 Reagan made me this Mother's Day card in school.  I love that it reflects her interests with the peace sign and One Direction features.

Collin wrote this about me in school.  He can be SO sweet.  I love everything he wrote, and this just makes me want to bake something special for him!!!

I have had a great day.  I guess I could have done without Katelyn's poop incident (I won't even write out the details), and maybe I could have done without the bickering and the grumpy moments the kids had, but that's part of motherhood.  I'm so very grateful for my children, and I truly cherish every minute with them.