Monday, April 29, 2013

Beautiful Burpcloths

I hope you enjoyed your weekend!  We enjoyed some of the sunshine on Saturday while also getting some work done around the house, and then rewarded ourselves with a nice dinner out with friends.

This is just a quick post to share these beautiful burpcloths that my mom made!  
She has been making them for awhile and taking them to showers for a few mom's to be.  
I took it a step further by asking a family friend to monogram them.  I think they should team up and start a little side business, just sayin:)
 I love giving gifts that are more of a want vs. need.  I almost always go with the registry for a baby shower, but like to make the gift more personal once the baby arrives.  Sometimes it's a special outfit or a personalized blanket, but these burpcloths are my favorite.  It should be arriving at their doorstep this afternoon, I hope they like them as much as I do!

And in case you're wondering...the baby's name if Clifford "Ford" for short:)



Wednesday, April 24, 2013

To The Happy Couple

As you may remember, we celebrated my sister in law's wedding in Albuquerque, New Mexico right before Christmas.  It was an intimate wedding and far from home so my in-laws hosted a little reception a few weeks back while Cara and Ken were in town.
And wouldn't you know I was sick the night before.  Fever and chills, but I was determined that I was going to rally for the party.  Luckily I managed a full recovery, lightning doesn't strike twice!
Robin decided to have the party catered and the food was amazing.  Some of the selections went so fast I never even got a taste!

It was also Cara's 30th birthday, so there was double the celebrating!

I couldn't leave this out...the dudes enjoyed a little free styling rap at the end of the night.  Some trio:)

We had a blast celebrating with friends and family, such a fun night!
We'll get to see Cara and Ken again in June when they bring his kids up to visit Michigan for the first time.  Lauren and William will be thrilled to see their new cousins again!



Monday, April 22, 2013


The April showers have been present most of this month.  And since the weather hasn't been cooperating I've got some pretty bored kids and a mama who has run out of ideas.  
But instead of me coming up with ideas, I let them take the lead.  Exploring.  We were headed to the jungle and through the rainforest.  We grabbed backpacks, maps, our trusty vacuum...
and because we have to be fancy in whatever we do, our princess shoes.
I'm not the best at make believe, but it wasn't my ideas they wanted.  Just me.  I hardly said anything, just an observer while their imaginations ran wild.  "Mom, we are going to follow this path to the river...and look we found a cat who needs these magic bananas that are in my backpack."
I always think that I need to come up with the activity, some pinterest craft, a table full of playdoh, or round of board games.  But something as simple as me just being present and engaged in their world of make believe can be enough.



Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Picture Perfect

There is so much anticipation and expectations that come with planning a vacation.   I research things to do and restaurants, but there is also significant time spent packing our families, planning outfits, even contingency plans for rainy days.  

Everyone wants to have a great vacation...When I was 18 years old my mom took us on a trip to Washington DC and I was acting like a complete brat and being a pain in her a$$ that she drove me to the airport and put me on a plane home.  Yes, that happened.  Even my laid back mother didn't want her vacation spoiled.  There is money saved, precious work vacation days are being used and it's usually much needed family time together too that has me wanting it to be the best it can be.

But since becoming a mom there are a lot less expectations.  They are still there, but in a different way.  Of course we want perfect weather, a chance to relax, and maybe get a good family picture (maybe not on your list, but high on mine).  There are also a few simple things I look forward to like not having to cook or clean.  And thankfully expectations have been lowered because children are unpredictable, toddlers are temperamental, and meltdowns are going to happen home or away. We were certain that while strapping a flailing and crying William into the car one night that someone was ready to call 911 for child abduction.

There were moments of feeling like the trip was simply just a change of scenery and times where tempers were short and patience exhausted from some disappointing news.  But perspective usually intervenes and you realize just how lucky you are to even be where you are.  Kids are going to be kids, things will be out of my control, but you gotta just hope the next hour will be better.

But some expectations were pleasantly exceeded.  Vacation Lauren was a complete surprise.  I couldn't have planned for the polite, patient, and oh so grown up daughter.  She was also more than willing to to smile for the camera almost 99% of the time...huge bonus for this mama!

There is no perfect trip, and we've learned to take the good with the bad.  And as time passes, you usually forget about the little things that created a few glitches in the trip and in the end it's the picture perfect memories that remain.  

All of the pictures were taken at Joe's Farm Grill in Gilbert, Arizona.  It was our best meal and a great place for the kids to run around after and snap a few pictures!



Friday, April 12, 2013

Phoenix: Part 2 {Trip Report}

Our stay in Phoenix was at two different resorts.  Our first night was at a JW Marriott and while it was very nice, it was a little fast paced for what we were looking for.  Basically, Spring Break Tween Central.  The second hotel was exactly what we were looking for.  Most of the time the pool looked just like this!
Other kids came and became their swim partners, but they were content playing with each other.
Our days started early and were spent at the pool.  We suggested a hike, but they were content swimming.  We were able to eat lunch poolside and a cooler was packed daily with adult beverages as well.  
Aside from sushi for Easter dinner, we picked what we thought the kids would enjoy as much as us.  Everyone loves Mexican!
The Old Town Tortilla Factory in Scottsdale was an excellent choice...Thank you Kristi!

Before this iphone shot, I think there were fifty plus shots taken on my camera of the kids and I.  All were complete fails, and not even just someone not smiling...heads turned, me trying to direct Billy, and William freaking the freak out because I won't give him the candy I promised until AFTER we take the picture.  Ok, ok...moving on.

We ended the night in historic Old Town Scottsdale for some ice cream.

And lucky for us...a little skeeball too!

Several people mentioned a train park we needed to visit, and since Wills loves trains we  made the stop!  What a great place for kids.  

Not only was there the train ride, but a caraousel and a few playgrounds with great climbers.
We rounded out the night with our first In-N-Out Burger!  I got a few laughs when I asked for a picture, for which I replied "we're not from around here."
Quite the savings that night at $14 out the door!

We've been having awful weather here...I so wish I was sleeping in the sun right now!



Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Phoenix: Part 1 {Trip Report}

Hello Friends!
I took an extended blogging break last week, we packed our bags and the family spent part of our Spring Break in Phoenix, Arizona.  I had intentions of posting while we were gone, but one thing lead to another and I just didn't want to be inside typing when I could be outside soaking up rays.  But I'm here today with part of our trip report.  

The flight was long but Lauren and William were much better than they were in December.  Upgrading William to his own seat sure did help!  Upon arriving to the hotel, we quickly exchanged our long pants for swimsuits and raced to the pool.  
Despite the temperature reading 85 degrees, the clouds were heavy which made for freezing temps in the pool.  Lips became blue so we headed for a quick nature walk before cleaning up for dinner.  Just outside our room were botanical gardens with a family of rabbits playing hide and seek with kids.
Dinner was uneventful and quick.  The kids were fading quickly and uninterested in being anywhere except bed.  Pinnacle Peak Patio was perfectly casual, with good beer and fast service.  

With all the packing and preparation for the trip, I decided Easter baskets would take a backseat.  Bubbles and a few chocolates would be enough...oh and a TRIP, not that they would understand that:)  This sad excuse for an Easter basket got just as big of a reaction, go figure.

But to make it even better, the hotel put on an amazing and free Easter egg hunt...
Complete with Mrs. Easter bunny.  Kinda creepy, right?
The kids had a blast and  the kids were separated into their appropriate age groups to keep things fair.  Except notice the kid in the blue gingham shirt below...
And spotted again here...what a little cheater;)

It was a great way to celebrate Easter morning, because our dinner at sushi restaurant didn't go over real well.