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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Claire is 3!

 Claire had a very merry birthday!  She woke up to the family singing to her at her door.  She was surprised to find steamers and ballons everywhere!
I can't believe she is 3 years old!!!!

I took Claire on a special lunch date and she chose McDonalds.
Throughout the day I made a special effort to call her Birthday Girl and every time I was say that, her whole face would light up!

She absolutely loves the play place!

We went to visit daddy at work and get a birthday balloon.  She was soaking up all the attention she was getting in her new aurora dress-up and being the birthday girl!

Thank you Grandma and Papa Martinson for this balance bike.  This is by far her favorite girl!  She is always on her special bike and wow, is she fast!

Thank you Nana and Grandpa Williams for the Muffin game.  She was so excited to play it and we pull it out and I ask her if she could tell me all the colors.  Well this girl knew her colors and I was absolutely SHOCKED!!!  I don't know if you remember, but I have been working on colors with her for many, many months and I think all I could get her to remember is red and sometimes blue.  Well I decided for my sanity and we should take a break (long break, couple months).  Magic happened and she KNOWS her colors!
(I am still in shock, I have had to have her repeat many times the colors...ha ha)

Brinley had a feast at her preschool and the whole family was invited. She was the cutest little preschooler there with her turkey hat that she made!

When the sisters saw each other, they ran and gave each other hugs.
So heart melting!!!

Brinley got a treat...

she only likes the frosting

Her adorable placemat

It is so fun to see Brinley love preschool so much!!!

I absolutely love being these girls' mom!  There are times that I like to pause and recognize how cute they are at this stage.  I really am enjoying this stage in motherhood!  It is hard, but there are so many joys amid the chaos.

Ashlyn brought home a permission slip to climb the rock wall at school and she told me (commanded me) to say that she can't climb it.  Well I signed the slip and Derek and I persuaded her to give it a try.  She didn't want to and made a big fuss.  Well the day arrived and she was so brave and got out of her comfort zone and she climbed it!  We are so proud of her!!!!!
I hope I can provide opportunities for my kids to step out of their comfort zones and try new things!  I believe there is so much growth and confidence in experiences like this.

(Picture of her "fake" climbing with a thumbs up)

Ashlyn has really become the artist at home.  She is constantly drawing and coloring.  She works so hard and I hope she will continue her passion for drawing.

Ashlyn made this book at school and we are so grateful for many that have served our country.  Thank you Grandpa Williams and Grandpa Robertson!!!

Ashlyn had her Thanksgiving Feast at her school.  I enjoy going to volunteer in her class to be with this cutie!

We spend this weekend with one last swim before it gets too cold.  The weather was 80 degrees and then we think the cold is going to start settling in.  
Brinley caught a spider (that was a good size) with her bare hand.  She had a fun time playing with it too.

Ashlyn got a haircut.  She hasn't been wanting to do her hair in the morning so we decide to do something different.



Lately I have been getting my crafty side on.
I went to a MOPS mother's night out and made this chalkboard style decor. Now I got to figure out where to put it in my house.

While my parents were visiting, my mom and I made these snowflakes out of clothpins and this week I made them into Frozen ornaments to go on our Christmas tree.

Here is our Frozen Christmas Tree.  
I bought additional ornaments to go on the tree, but when Desi was constantly taking them off, I came to the conclusion that I can do more in a few years!  So I am returning them this week....ha ha.  
Life with little ones! A time and a season for everything, including a beautiful, pinterest worthy Christmas tree...ha ha.

We usually don't decorate for Christmas until after Thanksgiving, but this year I have been so excited for Christmas!!!!  I just couldn't wait!!!!
The smell of this lovely aroma completes the Christmas spirit!

We made a new treat that we have never made before and it was a big hit!  It is pretzels, rolos, and white chocolate.  This sweet girl was my helper in the creating and devouring!

My mom is always so thoughtful and giving.  She made these beautiful ornaments with all the different names of Christ on them.  So I bought a special tree we call "The Jesus Tree" and we cut out picture from the Friend and framed them next to the Jesus Tree.
I thought it turned out beautiful!

Sunday evening we all sat around the living room reading Christmas books and listening to Christmas music!  Christmas is in full swing at our house!

We went to a community event that happens each year called the Lighting of Rudolph.  It is an Oil Rig that has lights on it and the community does a ceremony, hand out free milk and cookies, and best of all: Santa is therer!!!

Yummy cookies!

An adorable reindeer

Here comes Santa!

The girls got to give Santa a big hug!

On the way back to the car we saw the Chick-Fil-A cow

When we were at Hobby  Lobby buying the ornaments for the tree, we saw a bell ringer and I love opportunities that teach my girls to give.  Well sadly, all the coins were in the car, so we took a trip to the car and savored the joy of giving.  I enjoy these teaching moments!

We saw the movie The Star and we really enjoyed it!

My mom send a package and she gave the girls each a chocolate countdown calendar.  I loved these as a kid and sadly they don't have any around here, but my mom is continuing the tradition with my girls!
It is funny that as a kid I thought these chocolates were the best, but as an adult....they aren't that good.

The girls love the leaves pile!

This is how this girl does her job sweeping the floor 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Fall is in the air!

We have a new family favorite spot!  We love walking around the lake at the zoo park. This day it was 65 degrees and everyone is all bundled up.  How are we going to live in Utah again?!!

Skipping rocks in the lake

Right now this little one has daddy wrapped around his fingers.  It is her favorite person right now (yes, I am jealous!)

I am soaking up these moments that she wants to be with me, not daddy.

We had to pull out our Thankful Turkey Punch!  At dinner time we have a kid punch the cup and they find a slip of paper that asks a question that everyone in the family answers (ex. what food, animal, season, are you thankful for?)  It has turned into a fun tradition.

This little girl loves to sing.  She is recently found somewhere in the house singing, "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star."  with a mircrophone.  It is so darling!

We did a family craft where we made masks from paper and tissue paper.  So fun!
I love how crafty my girls are.

The girls wanted to watch our wedding video...fun ol' memories.
Derek and I watch it and think about how skinny we used to be...ha ha.

Derek had an idea (where I would freak out) about have a burn pile in the backyard.  The kids loved it! We are excited that the weather is starting to cool down so we can build some fires in the firepit.

This girls love their daddy!  They came up with a fun activity where Daddy pushes them up our neighbor's driveway and they go backwards down the hill.  It is hilarious!  They are learning to take turns!

Daddy donated some money to the High School band and so we got tickets to their band night that followed with a firework show.  It was awesome to see a great marching band and their various formations.  Then they honored veterns in Lufkin.  It was a fun evening that we would like to do again.

They provide dinner before the event.

Daddy spoiled these girls with hot chocolate!  It was a great way to warm us up!

It was a great evening and the girls zonked out on the way home!  YAY!

Ashlyn is really enjoying drawing and Derek found a youtube station that teaches her how to draw many different types of things.  It is her new fav!  So we spent Sunday afternoon (while everyone was napping and daddy was home teaching) doing artwork!  This girl is an amazing artist!

Ashlyn has the best teacher!  Ashlyn came home so excited that she played tic-tac-toe with her teacher four times and she won three of the games and tied the other one.  She told me with excitment that when she left to go home that day, Ms. Horan said, "See ya later tic-tac-toe master!"  It just made her day!

Silly faces against the window

The girls and I made cupcakes that I learned how to make the week before at a girls night!  They turned out delicious!  These are great bakers!

Fun walks around the neighborhood!

Ashlyn loves teaching Brinley how to draw!

These girls had a dentist appointment this week and they did great!
They are in the no cavity club!

Derek got kidney and gallstones a few weeks ago and he had a patient who brought him donuts.  The patient found out that he had stones and came back from the store with fresh fruit instead.  Derek gets spoiled by his patients!
He is the best dentist!

These girls love getting mail from Nana!  They loved the stickers! Thanks!

Funny Story:
So Derek has this darling patient and we just hit it off when we met each other.  We have ran into each other so many times at the store, restaurant, Derek's practice, and even the OB office.  We finally set a date to get our families together.  She invited us to her house on Friday for dinner.  We made plans on Monday, to get together on Friday. As we were getting ready, Derek looked at my phone to find the address. He noticed that we hadn't texted each other since Monday, and asked me if I'd talked to her since then. I told him and didn't think it was a big deal. So we drive to their house and pull in. There were several cars and quite a few people in their backyard. No one really came up to our car or looked like they were expecting us. Derek turns to me and says, "Are you sure they are planning on us? Did they forget?" So we took our sweet time getting out of the car because we weren't sure. The husband goes inside the house. Then the wife comes out and says hi and welcomes us, telling us that they decided to have family over too, to celebrate one of their kids birthday. Derek told me later that while talking to the husband he said, "Yeah, we pulled up and were nervous that you guys had forgotten." He just paused and said, "yeah, well we did kind of double book tonight." It was a fun, strange, semi-awkward night. They had already eaten but got food out for us. We roasted hot dogs and enjoyed our time together.

Daddy's girls gathered on the swing together.