Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Reasons why I love my sisters:

They stick by my side through "tornado" weather.
They make me laugh.
They're pretty awesome.
And sometimes, they even offer me free pizza. {Let's face it, that's the #1 reason.}

Monday, June 24, 2013

Science Center, Bridges, Thumb Sucking, and Pedicures

 We've been up to some pretty fun things lately. It's the only way to make an Arizona summer worth it.
My kids love the AZ science center and our membership expires the end of June so we got over there one last time.

 This was my spot most of the time, sitting somewhere, rocking the stroller with the fussy baby with my feet.
 George and Ellie were the best of friends.

 We've also spent a lot of our time stretching because Miss Petey is determined to be more flexible to show Mr Kevin at dance class.
 She's got that bridge down pat!
 This summer has also brought along a new phase; the phase where my 3 year old suddenly thinks he gets to become a thumb sucker. What? Yeah, you read that right.
 Summer is also a good time for a pedicure. Well, anytime is a good time for a pedicure and I had been having a hard day so Petey and I got to go on a mommy/daughter date.
Don't our toes look purdy? And I am seriously jealous of the way that girl tans!

What does summer look like at your home?

Movie Tickets

My sister is pretty awesome and is always letting me know of a good deal when she sees one...or I guess it's usually when she reads about one. Last week, she let me know about a deal that would get us free tickets to see Monsters University for our whole family. Umm, yeah. Where do I sign?

Kelloggs had a promotion that for every 6 boxes of cereal you buy, you get a movie ticket for MU. This may not sound like a great deal but when Fry's has those certain cereals on sale for $1.79, it is a good deal.
24 boxes of cereal later, we're ready to plan a family trip to the movie theater.

And lucky for us, I don't have to buy cereal for about a year. Now get off the computer and get to your nearest Fry's to get yourself some dang cereal!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

As Of Lately

 This is the first summer since Petey was 2 or 3 that we haven't signed up for multiple swim lesson sessions. Petey did a week and Spidey did 2 weeks and they ended the very beginning of June. I didn't think I'd like not going to swim lessons since it's so hot and I thought we wouldn't ever leave our house but it has turned out to be so much fun! We do stay home a lot more but we've also done fun things with friends.
Last week my friend, Emily, hosted a water party in her backyard for all of the neighborhood kids.
 They even got otter pops at the end. Heaven!
 On the days that I don't feel like going anywhere, the kids usually get some afternoon "quiet Kindle time" so I can get some cleaning done. It works. They love it. It's a win-win situation.
 Also last week, we went to a new splash pad in our area with some friends.

 Doesn't she have the most beautiful eyes?
 Don't you love Spidey in this picture? Yes, he was eating the water. I'll share a video at the end.
It was kind of gross but mostly funny. Of course right after my video I made him stop but it was pretty darn funny.

I wish it were cooler outside but since it isn't, I'm glad we get to do fun things that the kids enjoy. They love water and Petey asks all winter when it' swimming time again. I'm glad the heat doesn't affect them like it affects me.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Princess and her Queen

My Petey is strong willed. It has been a long time since I've experienced what I experienced as her mother last at least a year, maybe even two.

Ever since she was a baby, that girl has had a mind of her own. The five year old phase has been my least favorite and most favorite so far. Confused? I am too. My little girl is testing that five year old brain of hers and seeing how much she can get away with. Her attitude is feisty, her tone is often disrespectful, and she has a newfound love of the word no. On the other hand, when she is sweet, she is the sweetest and most helpful little girl I've ever met.
So back to last night. I don't quite remember what she had said or done but it was enough to earn her an early bedtime. As she was crying, screaming, wailing, and throwing toys at her door {which all seemed vaguely like my own childhood tantrums}, I prayed to know what to do. Her dad had had enough, her brother was now trying to sleep, and I couldn't figure out the best way to approach the situation. In my earlier parenting years, I would've ignored all of her actions no. matter. what. but for some reason, my heart tugged because of the things she was saying.

When I decided to go into the room of the tantrum-throwing little girl, she was full of tears and said to me, "I just feel like no one is being nice to me and I feel so empty inside." We layed down for quite some time together and I had the opportunity to pour my motherly heart out to that sweet child of mine. I tried my best to explain why we do what we do and how her actions have consequences. After a long talk and lots of hugs and kisses, she fell asleep almost instantly when I left the room.

As soon as I left the room, my mind turned to my blog post from last week. I thought about my wishy washy parenting and how it could affect my children for better or for worse. I believe, at least in this phase of life, that what I'm doing is the best thing I can be doing. I feel such a strong bond to the little girl that reminds me so much of me. Most of you who knew me growing up might be worried for my sanity and wonder why I'd feel blessed to be raising a child like myself but I am. I feel like her and I will have some of the hardest and best times in this life together. She is my little princess and I am her queen {her words, not mine}.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My Wishy-Washy Parenting

 I never thought I would be that mom. You know her. The mom that lets her kids stay attached to her side, let's them sleep in her bed, is sometimes a pushover when it comes to punishment. Maybe you are her and that's ok. I just never thought I'd be her.
I had visions of how I'd be when I became a mother. Those visions stayed true during most of Petey's baby-hood. I was not going to veer from my motherhood beliefs no matter what.


And then one day, I had a sick child and I let that sick child sleep in my bed.

And I liked it.
 And another time, a scared little girl had a bad dream and how could my heart say no to comforting her the rest of the night?

As my kids have gotten older, I've realized that there is no one way to parent. I try not to judge the mothers that are strict and I try not to judge the mothers that are pushovers...because I am both.
 It's sometimes hard to make that split-second decision to figure out what my children need at that particular moment. Sometimes, they need strict and sometimes, when they do something wrong, they just need a hug. I try so hard to get it right each time but that doesn't always happen.
 I already know I'm not the ideal mother in the world's view. My kids eat processed foods all of the time. Playing on the floor with my children doesn't always come easy to me. Heaven forbid there be any yelling in our home---sorry, but there is. I also know that I have to work hard each day and pay attention to what my children need.
 Sometimes, it might look like my parenting skills are wishy-washy but I promise, I'm doing my best. I know these two beautiful babies better than anyone and I try to make the best decisions for them.
Parenting is a hard job and it requires a thousand tiny decisions on my part each day. As long as I know in my heart that I'm trying my best, I feel like I'm accomplishing something great here. I'm influencing some of the cutest kids on this earth and I feel so lucky to be doing so.

Sunday, June 9, 2013


My sweet girl had a blast going swimming with cousins the other day and she asked for someone to take a video of her toe touch off the diving board. Lucky for her, Ken had his phone and took the video for her. I can't believe how big she is getting!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Tiny Strut

This week has been busy! My parents left town and we've been babysitting my little sister. On top of that, Petey had her dance tryouts this week. Wednesday and Thursday, she had workshops where she practiced drills, stretching, and learned a short routine to be performed on Saturday for the judges.

So today was the day. She had been practicing her dance the past 2 days and she was so excited. I had bought her an adorable two piece lace dance outfit with the intimidated intentions to sew some fabric to cover her belly...I use the word intimidated because I was nervous about ruining the whole outfit.
I believe it turned out well and I love her new outfit! She was excited to wear it to tryouts.

Since it was an actual tryout, I couldn't watch her and I was curious as to how she did. She assured me that she remembered the dance and smiled throughout it. The only thing she was nervous about were her splits. Miss JaNae had told them they needed to get their splits before tryouts and even though Petey was close, she wasn't quite flat on the floor.

Well, the results are in and our little girl made the dance team! She made the Tiny Strut'N'Stuff team. Here is a little snippet to explain what her dance team does. She won't be competing at all this year, which I'm ok with since she's still pretty young.

"Strut N' Stuff is a precision dance team that utilizes a Utah based curriculum. Dancers will learn drill commands and formation that will be used through out the performance year. Strut N' Stuff (SNS) is a beginning through Intermediate performing team that will have the opportunity to perform in parades, stage-shows, and various sporting events across the state. SNS members are required to take a minimum of 4 classes per week. These classes include Jazz, Ballet, and Technique."

She's excited to be taking more classes and I'm happy that she is so happy. I wish I would've gotten a video of her reaction when I told her she had made the team. She kept screaming and jumping and screaming and laughing and screaming and hugging everyone and screaming. It was so adorable to see her light up like that. It's going to be a fun year and I'm excited for everything that's in store for our little girly.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Disneyland 2013

 ***Picture overload!***

I thought about splitting our Disneyland trip into 2 posts but I figured I'd rather just take the time and do it all right now.

Boss' parents took the whole family to Disneyland last weekend and it was so much fun!
Spidey in the hotel. He was doing Spiderman fingers.
 Petey, all ready for the first day at the park. Boss' parents got everyone shirts and on the first day, the adults all matched and the grandkids all matched.
 The first thing we did was head to Cars Land in California Adventure. There was hardly a line in front of Lightning Mcqueen so we stopped to say hi to him.
 As you can see, it scared Spidey when Lightning Mcqueen started moving a little bit. So funny to watch.
 Next, we got in line for the most popular ride at California Adventures...Radiator Springs Racers.
 Somehow, Petey convinced 2 of her uncles to give her shoulder rides. Unfortunatly, the 3 youngest kids weren't tall enough to ride so they went and did some other fun stuff in Cars Land.
 This was Petey's first ride of the trip and she was excited, after waiting an hour in line.

Radiator Springs was a really fun ride. I loved it as much as my girly did!

I was determined on this trip to show Boss that I'm not as wimpy as I seem so I chose to go on Tower of Terror while Nana and Papa took the kids to A Bugs Life. Needless to say, I cried through the whole thing and thought I was going to die. Petey had been asking if she could ride it and after I experienced that, I said HECK NO! We'll come back to the end of that story later...

After a couple more little rides at Bugs Life, we headed to eat lunch.
 Three of the grandkiddos, eating lunch and watching exciting things happening everywhere.
 After lunch, the brave people went to ride California Screamin and we found Woody so the kids could meet him. Spidey was a little nervous at first and described Woody as a "tricky guy" but once he watched other kids interacting with Woody, he decided it was ok.
 We got the kids these autograph books so they could get as many autographs as possible from all the characters we saw.
 All of the grandkids with Woody. Can you tell Spidey ended up loving him? He could stop giggling and smiling at him.
 The carousel was fun for the kids but it was just another carousel to me. :)

 The kids loved watching Mr Potato Head telling jokes and talking. He was pretty funny.
 Nana, Aunt Darylle and Uncle John took my kids on the ferris wheel that slide around at certain angles because Boss and I both refused. :) The kids loved it and had so much fun.
 Aunt Juli and Aunt Katie went on the Jumping Jellyfish after Petey and I had done it a few times. It wasn't too scary but it did go up pretty high.
 After the cute Little Mermaid ride, we came outside to see Goofy conducting a water show. It was so fun. Petey ran as close as she could get and Goofy pointed to her and waved.

After that, we headed to Soarin' Over California but the little kids weren't tall enough for that either so we kept them outside and waited for the others to go ride it.
 Luckily, as soon as they came out, Minnie had just come out to sign books and give hugs. Of course, Miss Petey was so excited. She loves Minnie.
 Miss B was sleeping so only 4 of the grandkids met Minnie.

The Grizzly River run was next on the list and not even Petey was tall enough for that one. She was crushed and had a meltdown for a little bit before we found this splash zone where she could watch her daddy come down and get wet! I honestly expected for the splash zone to get them a tiny bit wet...not drenched.
 Boy was I wrong!
 REALLY wrong!
 Petey found a nice spot in the sun and layed out for a while. I also took this really funny video of the kids getting hit by a couple of big splashes.

Next was the parade, which the kiddos loved.

 As we were heading out the park to finish our day off in Disneyland, we saw Mickey so the kids got in line to get their books signed.
 Please excuse the U of A sweater Petey has on. We are die hard ASU fans but her Aunt Stacy lent it to her because she was freezing after getting wet at Grizzly River Run.

At Disneyland, we started with Pirates of the Carribean. Petey loved it. Spider was scared of all the skeletons and kept asking to get off.
 Then we did the Jungle Cruise and all of the kids loved it.

We headed over to the other side of the park so Papa could ride Star Wars. The older girls wanted to do it so I went with Petey. Oh my goodness, I'm getting nauseous just thinking about that ride! I am surprised I didn't throw up because I felt sick within 10 seconds of the simulator starting. While we did that, Boss took Spidey to ride the Buzz Lightyear ride, which ended up being his favorite!
 I was a nice wifey and let Boss stay with his brothers while I took the kids back to the hotel around 9pm. Aunt Darylle was nice enough to lend the kids her new towel because they were cold. I was so thankful to Darylle and Katie for helping me get the kids back to the hotel with almost no problems. I was nervous about it since Papa had bought them pillow pets and I had tons of other stuff to carry.
 The kids zonked out within minutes of being in the hotel. Here is Petey on her new Marie {from Aristocats} pillow pet Papa bought her.
 Spidey, zonked out on Perry the Platypus.

The next morning, I told Boss I would be taking Petey on Space Mountain because it is one of my favorite rides at Disneyland. We got there when the park open and we wait maybe 10 minutes to get on the ride. It was awesome. I was a little nervous about Petey but she insisted she wanted to do a bigger rollercoaster. I tried to hold her hand when the ride started and she told me to let go of her so she could put her hands up in the air. I couldn't believe it. She does NOT get that from me. After seeing the way she loved Space Mountain, I considered letting her do Tower of Terror. More on that soon...
 Petey really wanted to ride Buzz Lightyear since Spidey had loved it so much so I took both kids on it while Boss rode Space Mountain again.
 Next we did the Finding Nemo submarine, which gave me more motion sickness. Not my favorite ride but the kids had fun and liked it a lot.
 Papa really wanted to go on the monorail but I wanted to take Petey to Autopia so we split off for a bit. She drove for a little bit and decided she couldn't do it so I had to reach over to her side of the car and steer the wheel for her. My back hurt when that ride was over. :)

After the monorail, Boss and I took the kids to Toon Town. I was pretty adamant about getting over there since we didn't do Toon Town at all the last time we were at Disneyland.
 We saw Goofy,
 rode Roger Rabbit's ride {which was WAY too creepy for Spidey},
 tried out our muscles,

 got stuck in jail,
 met Pluto,

 and rode the Gadget Go Coaster, which both of the kids loved!

We made our way over to Splash Mountain so the bigger girls could ride it. Both of them loved it and I'm glad we did it. That's always been one of my favorites.

Boss really wanted to take Petey on Space Mountain so they went and did that while Spidey and I rode Winnie the Pooh and this Astro ride.
 Spidey says this was his favorite ride.
 It looks wimpy but it was really high and went faster than I expected. I just hunkered down as far as I could and let my boy take us up as high as he wanted.

So back to the story I've been telling throughout this whole thing. With all of the fast rides Petey was loving, Boss and I decided we would let her do Tower of Terror. I was worried about her reaction but wanted to be there if she was super scared so I ended up going on the ride again. It was less intense since I knew what to expect but even though I didn't cry, I still didn't like it. Before, during, and after the ride, Petey was the happiest little girl. She kept her hands up the entire time and laughed through the whole thing. I was dumbfounded. She just seems like my little baby girl. I can't imagine her being that brave but she was.
 After Tower of Terror, we rode some little rides around the park before we decided to head home. Boss had to work the next morning and we didn't want to get home too late.

Tweny minutes into our drive, the kids looked like this...

 They were exhausted.
 The next day, I had them pose with the souvenir we let them pick out. Petey chose Ariel and says she is her favorite princess because she is a mermaid. She was kind of mad when we got Ariel out and under her mermaid tail were legs. Apparently, she didn't want her to have legs at all. :)
Petey has been playing with his cars ever since we got home. He loves them so much.