Thursday, April 25, 2013

Oops, Olivia did it again!

Remember this?  When Olivia "helped" Ella lose her first tooth?

Well, Olivia has struck again!  This time involved a hula hoop, not a stuffed animal.  My kids were playing outside with the neighbors kids when all of a sudden I saw blood in Ella's mouth.  Olivia accidentally hula-ed a little too much and collided with Ella.

This is the result:

Ella is one tough little girl.  She was SO excited to wake up to find the Tooth Fairy left her $6!  She said, "She must REALLY like me because she left me so much money!  Six dollars and I am six!"

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Revamped playscape - adding monkey bars

The playscape addition is done!

Chad and Dad worked all weekend to finish it and it looks great!  Once the new treated boards have time to set, we will restain the entire playscape.  But, for now, it is ready for the kids to play on.

Here is a look at the before, sad playscape area.

Once the mulch was delivered, Dad worked all morning moving the mulch into the playscape area being careful not to block where the new monkey bars would go.

Like so...

As soon as the kids came home from school, they climbed the (remaining) mulch mountain.

Once Chad got home from work, he finished moving the mulch with the help of our new neighbor.  Less talky, more worky boys!

Chad measured and attached the monkey bars.

Dad trimmed the vines that were slowly taking over our fence and tree.

Molly stayed near Dad and happily chewed any vine or stick he tossed to the ground.

Next, they cemented four posts into the ground.

And then added the already assembled bars and attached them to the posts.  They added handles and steps for climbing.

Finally, Dad evened out the mulch and we were done!

Here is the final result!

The kids were so excited to test the monkey bars out!  It was torture for them to wait while the cement set.

They have even shared snacks while sitting on the top.  This particular snack was iced animal cookies and slim jims - which they proudly picked out all by themselves!


And the AFTER:

Thanks Dad for all your hard work!  Thanks Chad for making this fun change to the playscape!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Exciting things happening around these here parts!

I read on a blog that you should only post "awesome" things.  That readers want to read and see good, positive things. Anything not awesome should not be posted.  So, I kind of backed off on blogging because my life doesn't always reflect awesome.  Homework, toys, laundry, more toys, dishes... not awesome.

I have been thinking a lot about it.  MANY of the blogs you read only show awesome and I don't like it.  I think a lot of them aren't being honest by only showing the good.  I want to see real life.  And I think my readers (all 6 of you) do too.

So, not every post will be awesome.  Some will be awesome.  Some will be boring.  Others entertaining.  Who knows?!

Here is a post about what we are working on now.  I am proud to say that I have crossed eight items of my project to do list.  You will see the progress in posts soon.  I promise.  I am still trying to figure out how to declutter and organize my entire house... any ideas?

That is what is going on inside the house.  Outside is another story.  Texas is hot.  And dry.  And our poor yard has taken a beating.  Add in my kids and neighbor kids playing daily in our backyard and on our playscape  - it's not looking so good.  THEN, add in a puppy that likes to shred any plastic toy she can find and dig up roots and it's looking even worse.

We decided it is time to do something.

We ordered 12 yards of kiddie mulch to add to our playscape area.

We are also revamping our playscape.  Nothing major, but the kids use this everyday and we want them to continue to.

The biggest change...

We are getting a sprinkler system installed in the front and back yard!  We have talked about this for years.  We have tried just moving our own sprinklers around, but with our water restrictions each summer, it hasn't worked.  Plus, our yard is big and our lot is not square, making moving hoses impossible.  Our grass is dying.  Some areas are now just dirt.  The dirt turns to mud (when it does rain) and then Molly tracks mud through our house.

Our yard used to look so green and now it is just sad.  We are excited to get it back to green!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Olivia turns 8!

How did this happen?  How did my little girl turn 8 so quickly?!

Olivia is such a sweet little girl with the kindest heart.  She is a smart little girl who thinks about everything before she does anything.  Translation:  She is a sensitive girl who worries about everything.  I am afraid she inherited this from me and it is (and always has been) my goal to teach her to be strong and confident - and that there is enough time in life to worry, later.

A few fun facts about Olivia:
*She ADORES her pet guinea pig, Logan, and every time she feeds him/pets him she walks away and whispers I love you to him:)
*She loves to play with Squinkies, Zinkies, BIGinkies.
*She loves her little sister one minute then will battle her to the end over a Barbie (when did this phase start? And when will it end?)
*She loves to watch Arthur on PBS after school while drinking her milk and or (yogurt) and eating Oreos.
*She struggles in Math with telling time and money... exactly what I struggled with in Second Grade.  I have clear memories of sitting in class and it just not making any sense to me.  To this day, when someone asks me what time it is, I panic.
*She loves to write in journals and notebooks.
*She has a "crush" on a little boy in her class.  He has curly blonde hair and sits by her at lunch.  He will help her open her lunch if she needs help.  Too cute!
*She loves gymnastics - still.
*She is a sweet little girl who I love and adore!

We had a great day with Olivia!  I was worried how we would combine Olivia's birthday with Easter, but I think we managed quite successfully!  Thanks to Mom for preparing Easter dinner - I think that would have pushed me over the edge.  Luckily, I only had to bring cupcakes!

Here are some pictures to remind us of how we celebrated Olivia and her special day...

I brought cupcakes up to school to share with her friends.

We took the kids to see The Croods on Saturday knowing that her birthday would be busy with Easter traditions too.  Some of these pictures were taken on my phone so they are a bit blurry.

We went to dinner on Saturday night.  Olivia chose PF Changs because she LOVES the rice.

Our server brought her out a chocolate cake with a candle.  The girls ate every last crumb!

The kids think the huge horse statues are the best.

They also think it is pretty funny that when you sit inside the restaurant you can see the horse's behind :)  You can kind of tell from this picture.

Olivia's birthday began with an egg hunt in the house.  The girls woke up first and quietly counted eggs in hopes they would remember where they were all hidden.  Caleb was a champ and found all three Easter baskets!  The girls were so excited, they didn't mind and were happy for his help.

This is how Caleb took inventory of his eggs.  He lined them up and used multiplication to count them.

Here is Ella's pile.  See her fluffy?!

Molly was in the middle of the chaos, not quite sure what was going on.

The girls blew their new colored bubbles.  Super cute - super messy!  The bubbles dripped everywhere!

Eight presents were wrapped in pink paper.  We picked out pink flowers.  I made a pink birthday banner.  Can you guess Olivia's favorite color?

Olivia opened a couple presents before we headed over to Gramma and Papa's house.

Molly quietly ripped apart one of the girls stuffed animals.  It was full of little beads that were all over the floor!  Sneaky puppy!

I made cupcakes with pink frosting.

We headed over to Gramma and Papa's house and Olivia opened her presents - a birthday Barbie in a beautiful pink dress!  And a jewelry box.

We ate a yummy ham dinner and celebrated with cupcakes!

We then went back home and Olivia opened the rest of her presents.  She received an Angry birds Barbie and tent, fuzzy Squinkies, a Zinkie house, a big clock, a dog and cat that she can paint, and roller blades!

She put on her blades and headed outside!

To end our fun day, the kids colored Easter eggs.

What a great day!  Happy 8th Birthday Olivia!!!

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