Thursday, December 22, 2011

Gingerbread house- mistakes!

I learned 2 critical lessons this year that apply to decorating gingerbread houses.

1.  Decorate one gingerbread house (GBH) per household.
2.  Limit how much sugar is consumed

Okay a little explination...
1.  We had our dear friends over to decorate GBHs.  H, and his best buddy Ev wanted to decorate a house together.  They had so much fun, giggling, devising a plan, dripping frosting all over my entire kitchen, eating candy, decorating, eating candy, licking frosting, decorating... you get the picture.  We had 2 budding artists, 2 little people investing all that their little kindergarten hearts and creative minds can come up with into a very special little GBH...

Well, somehow it never crossed our minds that at the end of the night, both of these sweet little peeps would want to keep this GBH.  Uggh, WHY DIDN'T WE THINK OF THAT!  So needless to say, when it was time for our friends to go home we had to make a game plan.  I talked H through it and thought he was going to be fine with Ev taking it home... however his little heart broke.

Needless to say that next year we will do one house per family, not one house for the big kids and one house for mama to work on with Bug.  I felt SO very bad!

2.  And well, too much sugar can give anyone a tummy ache, and if you know H well, you know that he is apt to throwing up... and he did... and it made the night that much more sad! 

maybe someone can learn from my mistakes! 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


my all time favorite decoration for Christmas is my Willow Tree Nativity Set.  This year it was the only decoration that was put out for the first half of December.  (we had a very busy start to our December)...  This year my sweet in-laws sent our kids the Little People Nativity.  Which was good, because no one can touch mamas!  Mr. Steady We  learned that lesson when H was a year old and let him hold a lamb... to which he enjoyed for a moment then dropped on the ground, poor little lamb lost an ear that night!  All the more reason the kids needed their own.  The kids has loved having their own Nativity that they can move the guys around, move people and animals in and out of the stable, have the people move all around the house... it has been a lot of fun.  And I love that they are learning the real reason why we celebrate Christmas!  We are celebrating when Jesus was born in a stable over 2,000 years ago!  We are celebrating our Savior!  We are celebrating God's perfect plan to bring his grace to our world!

I want my kids to understand the Christmas story as much as their little hearts and minds can.  I really had wanted to do a full advent with them this year, or Jesse Tree.  But I didn't, and I really do regret it, but I'm trying not to get too overwhelmed with mommy guilt.  Anyway, one day last week we had a window of time and some sweet friends over, so I asked the kids if they wanted to act out the Christmas story.  To which they were all VERY EXCITED!  I pulled out my stash of fabric and whipped up some outfits as fast as I could.  It was quite comical, as soon as I got one kid situated and started working on the next kid's outfit, the outfit of the first would start falling off.  It took many tries, especially figuring out how to get a queen-sheet to stay up on tiny little Bug as her angel costume (without having to cut it).  But alas it worked! 

  "I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”- Luke 2:10-12

Merry Christmas!  May your heart be full of the wonder of all God has done for you in sending His son!  As you celebrate the last few days of this Christmas season, I pray that you will be blessed by His grace, and peace!  May the real Nativity story grip your heart in amazing ways!  We all have so much to learn and really soak in about God's love and his perfect plan!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Being fully present

I have been thinking so much about how I am missing out on little nuggets of life, missing the beat of our family song, half-heartedly being a part of a conversation... all because I am distracted, pulled in different directions and at times mentally "checking-out."

Just this weekend as Mr. Steady and I were on our way to Alaska, we had a glorious "day-date" in the Seattle airport for 3 hours!  On this random fun little date, I was embarrassed how many times I looked down at my phone to see if emails came through, to see if anyone had text me back, even fighting the urge to check facebook. Seriously, would you have wanted to be on a date with me.  Ummm, NO!

For me, I am constantly tempted to stay connected to others via my phone (text, email, facebook...) that I end up lessening my connection through real face time.  Once I realized I was doing this to Mr. Steady, and we talked about it a little, I confessed how often I am doing this to my kids.  "Just a minute H, I have to finish sending this text, then i will come and see what you are working on."  "Hold on, I can't answer that question buddy, I'm trying to consentrate on what this email says."

I don't quite know what the answer is, because we all know having technology at the tip of my fingures is often so very conveniant and can save time.  However, I need to get some pesonal limits in place, because as one friend said to me (about herself) "I don't want my kids to just remember my profile, of me looking at a screen.  I want more face to face time with my kids."  Oh so true!!!

I'm not wanting to limit media just for the sake of limiting it.  I see how much time I am spending on my phone, and honestly discourages me.  I don't like it because it shows me what is really going on in my heart, I realize how often I am looking at something on my phone just so I can "checkout." For instance, I just looked at the weather on my phone 5 minutes ago, I don't need to check it again... really I am disconnecting from the chaos of my own house, and covering up my selfish heart!  Maybe that is what it comes down to, me being selfish with my time.  Anyone else struggle with this?

I truly desire to figure out what is realistic, and what is right... for me.   I want my time to honor God, to treasure the relationships that God has put in my life, to live fully present in each moment, and to be considerate of those around me, even if they are only 3 years-old!  On the other hand, I have some amazing friends and ALL of our family that live hundreds of MILES away, that I don't have the pleasure of getting enough face time with... and in these relationships, I am SO very thankful for my phone to keep me connected.  How do I balance it??  I would love prayers for wisdom, conviction and strength to follow through, to be disciplined to have some non-phone HOURS in each day. 

I want to live in the moment!


Maybe it is my fault my kids like screen-time so much.
Monkey see, monkey do!


I must say, this post REALLY encouraged me, especially this quote...
But the biggest mistake I made is the one that most of us make while doing this.
I did not live in the moment enough..."  by Anna Quindlin

Monday, December 5, 2011

Hello again...

I feel like I need to re-introduce myself... Hi, this is Kelly!  Do you remember me from a few months ago??

Oh my, oh my... how surprised I am that it is already December!  Where have the last 3 months of our lives gone.  Uggh!  Life has been so crazy that as you can tell, I have hardly even been able to post on here all Fall.  Part of me wants to write one big update for all that has happend.  But for today, I think all I have time for is to say hello!  I'm ready to get back to blogging... it may have been so long that I have lost all readers... anyone out there : )

oh, and since I last posted on B-man... not only has he learned to walk, run, dance, climb, but now he is attempting to master the skateboard too!

Thursday, October 27, 2011


my baby turning 5 was fun, not too big of a deal
him starting kindergarten, got me a little chocked up
my baby turning 6, kind of brought this mama to tears!

the eve of H's birthday always gets me a little nostalgic, because it is the eve of the night i became a mama!  it was an emotional day, crazy long delivery, and the most elated moment of my life to meet my baby.

i can't believe he is 6
i'm so proud of the boy that he is
i can't wait to see the man that he will become
i can't get enough of his sweet heart
i'm constantly amazed by his mind
i'm trying to embrace that he is growing up, right before my very eyes
i'm praying daily for wisdom in how to instruct, direct and guide him...
how to bond with him, and continually show him that he is adored at home and we are thanful for him every day!

my heart if full... i'm so thankful to have this big 6 year old in my life!

cute story:
today for school i brought in cupcakes for  his class for snack time.  As I was leaving he whispered in my ear, "mama, will you come back and sit with me at lunch today too?"  Melted my heart! "I sure will buddy!"  Praying that he will always ask me to sit with him at lunch (even when friends are around), but knowing this might not always be the case, made me cherish this moment all the more!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Welcome to October

I don't know how in the world it is already October... and that I have posted so little!  Life has been CRAZY!  But five weeks from now, it should slow down... but wait, then it will be the holidays : )  We are in a busy season with Mr. Steady's work and the furndraising event I am planning.  I can say for sure we would not be surviving without God's grace for patience, endurance and perspective... and help from others!  Like today sweet Dina came an watched the kids so I could go to the eye doctor and to a meeting for the event.  Or Kathy having the kids and I over for dinner when Mr. Steady was gone.  Or Dena coming over to keep me company and help me take on craft project.  And that is just the love shown to us this week : )

We are all doing well!  And honestly I don't think the kids even notice how busy Mr. Steady and I feel, at least I hope not.  We are trying hard to soak in time with the kiddos as much as possible.  The TV is probably on more often than normal {judge if you must}, but the kids love that, meals are a bit more simple,  my computer time dictated by spreadsheets and invites and my nights of sleep are shorter.  But all in all, we feel very blessed... and thankful that this is just a season!

Okay enough talking about busyness... here one picture that might seem random, but I love it... just a moment of life happening in our house.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Mommy Date

Tonight I had the privledge to take Bug with me to run to Staples.  She was super excited to go, just us girls, very talkative in the car, super good in the store and just darling all around!  Staples only had 2 of the 3 things we came for, so I said, "Bug, is it okay with you if we run to Target too?"
She said, "Sure Mama, I don't care where we go, I just want to be with you!"

{Umm, melt my heart!!}

Then she continued on about how we were on a "Mommy- Bug date, no boys, just us giwls" (Bug's "L's" always sound like "W's").  Not only was Bug saying the darn cutest things, she was her most delightful self, and I was able to fully soak in just her!  I loved my little errand buddy this evening!  Yes, she went to bed an hour late, but so worth the bonding time I had with my Little Miss!

I need to remember to take advantage of my "solo running errand time" and really turn it into a date with just one of my little peeps!  They need the focused attention, and I need the opportunities to get to know them as an individual, not just a sibling.  They need the time to talk about whatever it is that is of interest to them, I need the time to fully enjoy the unique person God has made them to be!  They need the time to see their mama totally crazy about them, I need the time to show them how crazy in love I am with each one of them!

If you are not already doing it, go on a date with each of your kiddos!

ps. I have been MIA for a while, another post on another day to fill ya'll in

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Big week for H!

It has been quite a big week for our firstborn!
has a new room (no longer sharing with baby bro)
first back to school night
started kindergarten
recited weekly verse in front of the whole school
experienced carpool (way cooler than just our little family)
first soccer game
scored 2 goals in the soccer game...
And tomorrow if our first day of homeschool Kindergarten!
So many fun things for our biggest kid!

silly kiddos on the way to school

Our family getting ready to bring H in for his 1st day!!

Flagged down the ice-cream truck after school for a special treat!

Loving that Daddy is the coach!

H and his best friend E!


What I didn't expect this week was how hard all of H's firsts would be on Bug.  Once we were in the parking lot leaving school, Bug lost it.  "Why isn't bro coming with us?  I want to stay too!  I want bro to come home with us..."

Her sadness didn't last all too long, when we got home I put B-man down for his nap and Bug and I played dolls for 45 minutes.  Do I dare admit, I have never played 1-on-1 with her for that long!  It was such a treat to just get to focus on her for window of time!

She is now enjoying our new routine and doing quite well with bro gone at school.  Tomorrow is our first day of homeschool for H for Kindergarten, so we will see how well she does sharing my attention with both of her bros : ) 

Though I was dreading the busyness of this season, I am really enjoying the unique blessings of this season more than I expected I would!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

busier than I want to be

Life has been a whirlwind the last 3 weeks...
We got home from Alaska
did many loads of laundry
did some school supply shopping
was home a total of 4 days
then I flew the coop and went to Utah... all by myself
had a WONDERFUL time in UT with friends and my sister and nieces
came home to my wonderful husband who was thoroughly worn out and had a new appreciation for what I do, and a new resolve that 3 is PLENTY of kids for us!
more prep for school
more prep for my "mom job" at school {i'm the event coordinator for the annual fundraiser... which is only 9 weeks away}
ministry stuff for church
swimming lessons 2-3 times a week
fun hang out time with friends
finally hanging pictures on the walls... getting more settled everyday {though 2 months in we should probably be all of the way settled}
lots of time at the waterpark- 3 times in 1 week...
more school prep
more meetings for school and ministry
scrubbing crayon from my car interior- thanks to my 2 year old
dealing with throw-up... thanks to one kiddos ever so sensitive gag-reflex lots of dishes and messy floors at home
never ending piles of papers and toys
i am feeling tired
i have been so distracted by all that is happening around me that I haven't fully soaked in that my baby starts KINDERGARTEN tomorrow!
I don't want to be so busy with the perifial things in life that I miss out on the importance of big milestones for our family!  As much as I am dreading having a school-aged kiddo, having life dictated by when the school bell rings, school vacation schedules and activities.  I am really excited for all that is in store for H this next year!  I just need to do a better job figuring out how to function in our new stage of life... to not let the necessary busy overwhelm me, and to know what other "busy" we just have to say no to!

Cheers... and some tears, to our new season of life!

ps. so very thankful I get to homeschool him 2 days a week!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Last week we had the privilege of going to Alaska to see my mom and step-dad.  We had a great trip, and the biggest take-away for us was how blessed we feel that our kids get to experience such an amazing place!  We always loved our trips to Alaska when we lived in Utah... but now living in crowded suburbia of SoCal, it made us cherish the open space, majestic mountains, quiet waters even more!

If you have never been to Alaska, you really should add it to your "bucket list!"  God's glory is seen all around!

Sunday, August 21, 2011


I need a little more patience in my life!  Especially when we are heading out the door, or it is bedtime!  It seems like I tend to be in a rush for both of these occasions... both of which happen daily... definitely an area I can't be complacent to not change!

I keep thinking about the fact that "LOVE is PATIENT!"  I want to love my husband, my kids, my friends, neighbors and strangers.  Yet, am I showing them patience??

Am I taking the time to really listen to what my child is trying to tell me?
Am I interrupting their story?
Am I listening fully (not letting my mind race a head to a to-do list)?
When milk is spilled or any other little acident happens, am I patient in instructing my little one to clean it up, or am I quickly get frustrated, loosing my cool and raising my voice?
When it is time to get in the car, am I planning for the time it takes to really load 3 little ones (and all their gear) up?  Or am I trying to hurry and rush everyone out the door, scrambling at the last minute?
Am I enjoying the process (especially bed-time), or am I just looking forward to it being done?
Am I making life feel like a crisis because of my impatient responses?
Is the clock or my child's heart more of the guide of my day?

I am by nature not a patient person!  Not at all!   I don't want to tell you my ugly answers to the questions above... so I won't.... but I can tell you that I so desire growth in this area!  And I am going to start praying daily for a patient heart!  A thankful heart that can be patient!

If you need some encouragement on patience, you should read this amazing post from Ann Voskamp.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Playroom ideas

we have a play room, which I love!  Whoo Hoo!  And with a door that closes, which is even better : ) I have been scrounging the lovely internet for ideas of what I want to do in this space.  I want to make it fun for the kids, functional for our storage of kids stuff and a place we can hang out as a family.  Her are some of my favorite ideas from

i love this growth-chart that I found here

And this is the bookshelf we were planning on getting.  Love the baskets, love the map, love it all

And I love the idea of a verse being a piece of art in the room... ahh so many great verses, which ones for which rooms.
I love the idea of having a chalkboard in the room.  Love the idea found here for making one!

And an art wall, area... set place to display all of the treasures my kiddos make!
There is not one room in our house that is completely settled... give us 6 months! Haha!  I will post pictures soon of what we have done so far.  But hope you enjoy all of my lusting of completed rooms!  Someday, someday : )

Oh, and I just saw this on one of my favorite blogs... an instant fort!  My kids would love that!

ps. if you don't know what pintrest is... it is the BEST image search on the web! 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Pace of life

Today, we stayed home ALL day, and I had the realization that our pace of a day directly correlates with my patience and perspective.  You see, I have been short on patience lately and my perspective on life has been a bit grim... but we have also had a hurried pace of life... with all of the details surrounding our move.

This week I have been intentional to SLOW down, and man I feel like a new woman!  I spent so much of the day smiling and laughing with the kids.  Even when they needed correction and consequences I was calm, had wise words to say (PTL), and was able to better draw out their heart.  I so wish everyday could be like this.

I know school starting is right around the corner (part-time homeschooling), soccer will be starting for H, Mr. Steady's job is going to be crazy busy in the Fall, we will have new commitments with church, and I have a pretty big event that I am planning.  If I think about that hurried pace it makes me want to stop the clock.  I so very much like/ need/ thrive in this slower pace of life!  I pray that in the next few weeks of calm, that my heart can be prepared for busy.  That rather than dreading it, I pray that we can move forward with great anticipation of what each day will hold.... that busy won't necessarily coorelate with me being stressed and short-fused.

I know it will take some time once Fall is underway, to find our new grove and pace, just like every season change in life takes adjustment. 

a few new conclusions... (for me... lots of you have already had to figure this out)
I have a school-aged child... that means 3 mornings a week we have a set time we have to be out of the house... uggh!
To not regret every school morning, I have to be totally prepared... hmmm, need to figure this one out
That I might will have to say "no" to a lot of things that sound fun to me, but need to know that I can't do everything with everyone.

Can anyone relate??  I know some of you out there think that I am crazy! You like life at a fast pace and you think your kids do well with lots going on... but for me and my kids SLOW is what we do best : )

Friday, August 5, 2011

All american weekend

Last weekend we were able to go and see some of our best friends that live in the Santa Ynez Valley.  We had an AMAZING weekend!  The Santa Ynez Valley feels worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of SoCal.  There are huge open pastures with cows grazing, acres and acres of beautiful vineyards, quaint  main street areas, honestly it is idyllic!  We love it up there!

The weekend was perfectly planned out...
Picnic in the park
Berry picking
Triptip sandwiches... yummy!
S'mores around the campfire
Dressup clothes (for the kids)
Playground craziness
Wine- tasting
Vineyard tours
Peanut butter M&Ms (perfect paring for a Merlot, don't you think)
Running through the grass
Hike through the creek
Tadpole catching
Sweet time with one AMAZING family

Good thing last weekend was so fun... we won't be doing much this weekend... I have bronchitis... who gets that in the summer?? Uggh!


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