Thursday, January 31, 2013

New Shoes

Landon has been bugging me for new shoes for awhile now. I knew it was time for a new pair (no matter how many I buy him, he’ll only wear the same pair over and over and over again and they get worn out quickly) so this past weekend I told him we’d make time to go look.

We decided to run in the mall after our lunch at Bobby’s Burger Palace, and the first store we saw was Skechers. I wasn’t sure he’d find anything in there, but much to my surprise, he found a pair he really liked. I was thrilled that it was so easy to find something he liked so quickly, so we paid and left.

He didn’t wear his shoes at all until he went back to school yesterday. I guess he wanted to save them until then. He was so happy to put them on yesterday and loved how they looked…they are definitely cool looking shoes.

Well, this morning, before school he casually asked me if Skechers were a good name brand shoe. I told him that they were a pretty good shoe and he said, “oh”. I, of course, knew something was up and upon questioning him he told me that his “friends” didn’t like his shoes because they were Skechers.

Gahhhh. I hate middle school!

He also told me that when they saw his shoes they all liked them until they found out what brand they were. (Grrr…) I asked Landon if he still liked the shoes and he said he did. He said he didn’t understand why the other kids didn’t like them simply because of the brand they were. I told him they probably didn’t understand why they didn’t like them either…just some stupid thing their parents or older siblings told them. Who knows. I also told him that he was just going to have to ignore what people said about them and that this was one of those things in life that just sucked.

I knew what I had to say and I did.

What I wanted to do was:

  • find those spoiled brats and give them a piece of my mind
  • buy him a pair of Nike’s or whatever the hell is socially acceptable. (I don’t even know!)
  • write a letter to the school demanding they all wear uniforms so everyone has to look the same.

Of course, I didn’t do any of those things.

I have to admit that the part that bothered me most was knowing that he was so proud of his new, cool looking shoes and that his friends made him feel bad about liking them. I know that he’s going to have to be tough and develop a thick skin over the next several years and that this is just the beginning of that.

I also know that I hate it.

Koko’s Sippy and Harper the Friendly Ghost

I bought Dakota her very own sippy cup this week when we were out. She is always reaching for Harpers so I thought I’d get her her very own. I didn’t think she’d be able to figure it out yet, but I was so wrong! She barely had that thing for 5 minutes before she figured out how to drink the water! Man was she surprised when water filled her mouth! :)

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While she was busy gagging on drinking her water, Harper was busy being a scary ghost:

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A nice, scary ghost that is.

Walking around with blankets on his head playing ghost is just one of his favorite games these days. His other favorites are hide and seek (40 gazillion times a day) and looking through his I Spy books. I’m just glad that he’s so easily entertained!

Pinterest Food

We made two recipes this week that I had pinned on Pinterest. One was called Meatloaf Muffins with Barbeque Sauce and the other was Crock Pot Cheesy Chicken and Rice. Both were delicious! The meatloaf recipe can be found here and the chicken recipe can be found here.

Here’s my picture of the chicken dish…man it was good! The chicken is hidden under all that goodness and was so tender it just fell apart when we served it.

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*Note to mom: Both were easy and very good. They both make enough to feed everyone in your house too. :)

I’m trying to incorporate at least one or two pinned ideas to our menus each week. I have acquired so many great recipes through that site, but I forget about it when it comes time to make the weekly menu. I think we’ve probably made at least 8-10 recipes that I’ve pinned and so far we’ve really liked them all.

I’ve already got this, this and this planned for next week. I sure hope they turn out as good as they look!

Painting with Harps

Harper wasn’t in the mood to play with the toys he’s been playing with lately, so I thought it’d be a good day to pull out some paints. I remembered an old spin art toy of Landon’s that I’ve been saving, so we gave it a try.

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That little thing is probably at least 8 or 9 years old. I was really surprised when Harper flipped the switch and it came on! I thought for sure the battery would be dead, but lo and behold, he moved that switch and it started spinning.

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There was even some paint left in the small bottles. Bottles I’ve filled hundreds of times…the paint was a little runny, but we shook it up and poured away.

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Harper enjoyed adding the paint and turning the switch on and off. I think he may have actually enjoyed turning it on and off more that anything else.

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We made 4 or 5 of these papers and then he wanted to paint with his paint brushes. Since Dakota was taking a rather long morning nap, I happily obliged.

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I put 5 colors on a paper plate and gave him 5 brushes to use. He chose one brush and all five colors all at the same time. I had to bite my tongue.

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I painted him a heart on the left page. He made it better. I painted him a big orange rectangle at the top of the right page. He also made that better.

He seemed to enjoy this today more than usual. Maybe it’s his age, I don’t know. Before he’d only paint for 5 or 6 seconds and then jump down telling me he was done, but today I think it last about 10 or 15 minutes. I sure hope he starts to enjoy doing artsy stuff with me because I’ve got all kinds of ideas! :)

My 6th Grader


For Landon, 6th grade sure has been an eye opener. I don’t remember Zoe having any trouble transitioning from elementary to middle school, and I wouldn’t really say Landon’s had trouble, but it sure has been a challenge thus far.

The homework load is probably making the most difference. For Landon to sit all day at school and then have to come home and sit some more is torturous for him. He doesn’t get home until 4:30 so he really has to start homework almost immediately just so he gets it done and has a little free time before bed. There have been quite a few nights that there hasn’t been any free time at all. Just school, homework, bed and that kind of sucks.

He’s been required to do several projects this year on top of everything else. I have to admit that the projects aren’t terribly difficult or anything, just time consuming. His class had to read The Hobbit then do a rather large project on it just recently. He enjoyed the book but still stumbled through a lot of the project. Luckily Tony has read the book and was able to give him a hand. The project turned out really good (in my opinion) and I’m anxious to see the grade he was given.

He also just did a smaller project for Science. (I think that so far this year he’s had 3 projects for this class alone.) He made a brochure about the rock cycle. It wasn’t a difficult project by any means, but it took him quite awhile to complete it. I sure learned a lot about rocks and the rock cycle!

Front Cover:


Inside pages:


Inside Flap:


Back Cover:


He got 15/15 on this project! Woohoo!

It seems to me that Landon’s biggest struggle in school right now is math. He seemed okay at the beginning of the year, but I think the pace of the class is a little quicker than he’s ready for. He pretty much needs constant help with his homework and is really frustrated when he doesn’t understand it. His grade in that class is showing that he isn’t understanding it too. We haven’t gotten the second report card as of yet, but I think we may need to hire him a tutor to help him get through this class. I am terrible with math, so I can’t help him. Tony and Zoe both help when they can but with Zoe being away at school and Tony helping with the two littles at night, it’s tough.

Other than math though, he seems to be doing pretty well. We have a constant struggle with him forgetting to do things, like turn in homework he’s completed, but I think we’ve gotten that taken care of as of now. I’m just really hoping he’ll make it through this year without too many more problems. He’s sure got a lot of school years left to finish.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Christmas Album, Part 2

Here are the last several pages:

I didn’t get many pictures when Kiersten visited, but I used what I did get to make this spread about her visit.


These two pages were about our cookie decorating party. Hidden journaling on the tag behind the photos on the right page.


Of course I had to put in the photo of the babies with Santa!


This was all about the night we sat around making foam Christmas trees.


Usually I get photo’s of both kids wrapping their gifts, but Zoe hid in the basement to wrap hers and I didn’t get any pictures…but, I got this one of Tony and Landon hard at work. Since it was only one photo, I did our game night page on the right.


Gingerbread tree’s are what these two pages are about.


Here you have a cute little toddler showing off his cookies for Santa and on the right, a bit about how we spent our Christmas Eve.


Christmas Day. There are so many things I could do for these pages, but I decided to keep it real simple with just a photo of each kiddo on that day.


Even though I should have ended there, I had letters from Santa that I wanted to include in the book. It’s something that Mema makes sure to send each kid every year. (She just stopped sending them for Zoe, and Landon probably won’t be getting many more either…but the babies have YEARS left, thank goodness!) I also had the back of the Christmas day page to fill, so I figured that’s where I’d put them!


There you have it. My 2012 Christmas album. This is one project I really like doing and looking back through each album is really awesome. It’s amazing how much changes in one year and how much stays the same.

My December (Not So) Daily Album, Christmas 2012

I can’t really call this a December Daily album because I didn’t quite make the usual 25 pages. I decided to go ahead and make a book with what photo’s I did get though, and I’m happy with how things turned out.

I’m going to break this up into a couple posts because they are going to be photo heavy.

I went with a super simple cover. I liked the paper but because it was such a busy pattern I embellished very little.


My first layout is always about Zoe because her birthday is the first!


My second page, this year, was about Koko turning 5 months old.


This layout was about the boys hanging the candy canes on the tree. They didn’t really help with the ornaments, but they did enjoy doing this part.


I put our holiday greeting card on the left and wrote a little about the experience on the right.


These pages were dedicated to our new elf, Peppermint. I used lots of photos to show the crazy mischief she got into.


I got a couple shots of the boys working on their Lego advent calendars. There is a little journaling on the tags on each page.


I used the photo’s of us making our ornaments for these pages. The photo of the ornaments on the right lifts for some journaling about this.


Pictures of our drive through the Festival of Lights.


These two pages are dedicated to the little projects Harper did at home.


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Leg Warmers, Take 2

Remember how I posted about Dakota’s leg warmers the other day?

Remember how I said she had another pair and that I’d be posting about them?

Well, today is the day!


Hello, cuteness.


The bib was a must that day…she’s been drooling like mad. Maybe it’s the adorable leg warmers she drooling over…I don’t know.

Good news! I ordered her a few more pairs! Six to be exact.

Bad news. They’re coming all the way from Hong Kong so it may be too warm by the time they get here. Confused smile


Harper and Dakota

Chicken Pox

I just had to get out of the house today. Between the kids being sick and the crappy weather we’ve been spending lots of time at home so today I decided we were getting out even if it only meant a quick trip to Target. I love me some Target…

Once we got back home I noticed that the dog had gotten sick on my carpet. Lovely. Landon was convinced that since we were all sick with that nasty stomach bug a week or so ago, that the dog now had it. I explained to him that dogs don’t get sick from humans and vice versa.

He then, very seriously, asked me “Well, don’t people get chicken pox?” Ha! Guess he set me straight! :)

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Zoe, Bobby and Lea

We had a big day today. Since Zoe made the dean’s list this past semester we decided to take her out to lunch to celebrate. We let her choose the place and she wanted to try out Bobby’s Burger Palace at the casino. See the casino in the background?

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I wasn’t too excited since I knew it was all hamburgers, but because it was her choice, I didn’t complain. I’m so thankful I didn’t now because that place was awesome! The food was delicious! The burgers weren’t anything extravagant or crazy, but they were incredibly tasty. The fries and onion rings were also terrific. My favorite burger joint used to be Red Robin…but, now it’s Bobby’s. I ordered the Philadelphia Burger and if you ever go, give it a try, you won’t be sorry! Unless, of course, you don’t like awesome.

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So, after lunch we headed to the mall to get a couple things, and then home to see Zoe off to school. She threw her stuff in her car and was gone. Just like that, her 5 week break was over. I hate seeing her go, but I know she’s gotta do her thing, so I just have to suck it up and keep my mouth shut. It’s hard.

Next up was a birthday party for cousin Lea. She’s three! It’s hard to believe she’s already 3 and harder to believe my Harhar will be 3 this summer as well. Time flies when you're having fun, let me tell ya!

Here’s Koko in her party dress: (sorry about the blur but she wasn’t in any mood to hold still for a picture!)

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Here’s Lea blowing out her candles:

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Harper entertaining himself by entertaining their kitty:

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We had a nice time and it was nice to see everyone again. I was thinking tonight about how I’m going to have to throw three birthday parties this summer and how I should probably start planning that now! Two July birthday’s and an August…it’s going to be one busy summer!

Friday, January 25, 2013

My Little Spy

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Every time I see Harper sitting and looking at books I am reminded of when Zoe was little. She loved to read anything she could get her hands on and I have the feeling this little guy is going to be the same way. I can remember Zoe spending many hours on the couch reading during the summer…it was just what she enjoyed doing.

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We’ve made it our ritual to read to Harper before nap and bedtime every day. He loves for us to sit and read to him, and now he also loves to sit and “read” to himself. He’s especially interested in I Spy books and knows them all by heart. This morning, Landon was reading one of those books with him and Landon told him he had to find a penny. Well, Harper informed him that he wasn’t looking for a penny but a “president’s face” which is what is written in the book. There’s just no fooling this dude.

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I Squeal!

While Tony and Harps were out in the snow, Koko and I stayed in the house where it was warm. While I was taking pictures of them from the door way, I put Koko in her swing…which she never uses. She just never quite loved it the way Harper did. He would sleep in it for hours, and she did that when she was too young to know the difference, but now, forget it.


It’s funny to me how big she looks in there! My tiny girl is already 6 1/2 months old and getting to big/old for some of this baby stuff. Crazy, right?

You can’t really see how adorable that outfit is in the above picture, and I‘m just in love with the leg warmers I found her the other day. I found them at a WAY overpriced baby clothing store in the mall called Hanna Anderson. I loved the store, but there is no way I’m spending big money on stuff she’s going to get poop on. Just no way. But, those little leg warmers…well, she won’t get poop on those…

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Every time I see her in those little things I squeal. I mean, seriously. So dang cute! I got her two pairs because they were buy one get one 1/2 off, so you can be sure I’ll be taking pictures of those little cuties too!


We’ve finally got some snow around here. Not a lot, but enough to play in, and that’s really all ya need.

Harper could not wait to get out in it the first day it snowed. Unfortunately, it was a super hectic day in which Tony was at work and I had to figure out how to get Zoe to work and be back home in time for Landon to catch the school bus. (Zoe’s car battery died the day before and Landon’s school started 2 hours late because of the snow.) I managed, but it wasn’t fun.

Once we got home from dropping Zoe off, Harper and I were able to squeeze in about 20 minutes of fun in the snow while Dakota hung out watching in her car seat. She was happy until that 20 minute mark and then that was it. She’d had it and she threw a massive fit. Harper wasn’t quite ready to go in yet, so once I told him we were going in, he took off in the opposite direction. I ended up having to chase him down while letting Dakota scream it out in the garage. I’m sure the neighbors thought it was either hilarious or terribly annoying. Oh well.

Once Tony got home from work, Harper immediately told him it was time to go out and play in the snow, and that’s what they did.




Harper thought eating snow was awesome until his dada handed him an icicle!


In the boys’ stockings this year Santa left some snow paint. It’s basically just some type of coloring that you mix with water in a squirt bottle type thing. The dye inside ours is orange, so when you squirt it in the snow, it sort of looks like dog pee. Orange-ish dog pee. Tony had way more fun using it than Harper did. I won’t mention what the actual bottle resembles…





Water Balloons

When my kids told me they didn't know what to do with themselves yesterday I suggested they go outside and play with the water balloons....