Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween 2012

 TaDa! The great reveal:

Angry Birds!!! I mean, really, could it have been anything else? The boys vetoed every single costume I suggested but when Samuel asked if they could be angry birds, I did a little research and voila! 5 days and a few sore fingers later....:)

They got lots of compliments and loved every second in them!

Little Pumpkin:)

Samuel in his school parade!

Zakkai's parade

Zakkai's kindergarten class! I got to help with their Halloween party today, which was really fun. He has a sweet class.

It was pulling teeth and nails to get this girl in her ladybug costume! Once we got it one and shed a few tears, she was good to go!

We trick or treated with some good buddies...Harry Potter and Hermoine! (her robe was falling off)

After an arduous night of trick or treating:)

And presenting the most horrendously decorated Halloween house I've ever seen! I couldn't even fit it all in the picture. Please click on it for a bigger view. Ridiculous!

And we live right down the street.....aren't we lucky?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Just hanging out

I'm so glad Eliana has two wonderful, big brothers! She finds any way she can to draw them into play or activities with her.

Like this, for instance:

This afternoon she talked Samuel into joining her in her special hiding place:) He, being the doting big brother he is, had no hesitation in catering to her sweet pleas. "Sanyuel, Sanyuel, c'mere! C'mere, Sanyuel!"

I finally finished the boys' costumes just a little while ago. They tried them on this afternoon and they are pretty hilarious. Tomorrow, at school, they have a parade after school where all the kids put on their costumes and walk around the school so the parents can see. Both boys are a little nervous about it and I have this terrible fear that they'll be made fun of or something. Kids can be so judgemental and mean! Samuel is just so happy and sweet and I hate to think of someone bursting his bubble and hurting his feelings.

I really hope they just have a good time tomorrow. Can't wait to show you the big reveal!

Monday, October 29, 2012

It doesn't take much...

 My day started dark and early this morning with a very intense workout at the Y! I have really been wanting to add some more workouts in, other than my 1 day a week Zumba class, and have been having such a hard time finding a good time in our schedule.

Hence, my 5:45am workout. It took a lot of willpower to roll out of bed and put my feet on the icy floor and workout. I went to a Body Pump class, which was totally more intense than I realized. The other women in there were hard-core and had obviously been doing it for awhile! After 45 min, my arms were shaking and I was starting to feel slightly nauseous. It is a 1 hour workout using a weight bar and weights!

Squats, lunges, shoulder raises, biceps, triceps, push-ups, ab work, you name it, we did it. It may take even more willpower to go back next Monday.....I'm already really sore!

I'm checking out Yoga Thursday morning. Hopefully that will be a little lower key!

I have been sewing my fingers to the bone for my sweet guys. Seriously, my fingers are really sore. But my heart is so happy because my boys are so happy! It took them a really long time to come up with a costume idea. We don't buy $40 costumes over here, we create with what we have! Just like the good old days, right?

The boys have practically been breathing down my neck, waiting impatiently for me to finish. But I can't tell you about it yet because according to them, it's a secret:)

Samuel slid this sweet note over to me after dinner tonight. It says, "Dear Mommy, I love you so much. You are the best mommy in the world. Thank you for the ---------
costume. Love, Samuel."

If that's all it takes to show my kiddos I love them, I'd make a million of these!! I'm always amazed at how forgiving and loving kids are. And it doesn't take much to fill their hearts up with love.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Two Peas..

 In a pod, these two!

Crazy about each other...

Can't get enough of one another..

A Daddy and his princess.

What a love story:)

Saturday, October 27, 2012


I've added a new favorite thing to my favorite fall list! If you are anywhere near a Trader Joe's, you absolutely must try this:

It's just amazing! By far, the best pumpkin ice cream I've ever had. Yum.
We were up alllll night with a fussy Eliana:( She has been so cranky and un-Eliana like since she got sick on Monday and is now congested. She finally settled into sleep around 4:30 or 5am and we all slept in til 9am. Well, except for the boys, who were happily playing in the basement:)
We had a pretty nice day once we got moving. We went out for a bit and came home to spend a quiet afternoon. While Eliana slept, Samuel (our little bookworm) read a book, Zakkai worked on a project in the basement while Ben studied and I worked on the boys' Halloween costumes!
Such an exciting life we lead:)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Little Bunny Foo-Foo.

Our Sweet Bunny Foo-Foo has had such a tough week! I finally connected the dots today (literally~ha!) as to the mystery virus E has been suffering from when she broke out in a rash all over. Looks like Roseola struck our house again! (the boys had it when they were little.)

Poor Eliana has had high fevers, no appetite and has been so sleepy and fussy since Monday afternoon. Today her fever was finally broken and she broke out in a rash. Add that to her puffy, red eyes and she looks sad! I am so thankful to have an answer though and hope she heals quickly!

It was so nice to see her playing today and seeming more like herself. She's a little more mellow and irritable than normal but much better than 2 days ago!

Our little birthday girl has been getting some cute gifts in the mail. She knows presents are fun but isn't sure how to open them:) I help her tear them and then she exlaims and oohs and ahhs over the treasures inside! Yesterday she got the cutest package from my sister: bunny slippers, pajama pants and a cute Pajama book by one of our favorite authors, "Sandra Boynton."

E insisted on putting the bunny slippers on right away and has worn them pretty much ever since, except for bathtime! She put her pajama pants on over her leggings and she was set:)

My sister opened an etsy shop if you are interested in other adorable things like these! It's called "Goosalicious" and she's really talented and adding new things soon!

Now off to settle the Foose, who is having a party in her bed......

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Give a little, Spend a little.

Happy Tuesday! It was a strange day for me today. I didn't get much accomplished because I spend most of my day holding or tending to my sick little 2 year old:( She took five naps today~2 on my chest and 3 in her bed. Poor thing is so very sad and pathetic. I don't really know what's wrong. I keep expecting her to show symptoms like Zakkai had last week but so far she just isn't eating well, has a doozy of a fever and is uncomfortable.

Caring for a sick little one is heartbreaking, esp when they can't tell you what's wrong! We'd appreciate any prayers you could say for her tonight!

The boys get a few dollars here and there from special occasions and we usually put some in their piggy banks and let them spend a little. I've been wanting to teach them how to manage money, how to do good with it and not always want to spend it (on JUNK!) but haven't always known how. Kids tend to want to buy everything they see because it's always something they've "always wanted!" ha.

When we stayed with my sister in Colorado, I saw that she had 3 jars for my nieces labeled "Give," "Save," and "Spend." I loved the idea and have been wanting to do it with the boys. I finally made them this weekend and we also started giving the boys a small allowance each week! I'm a little jealous; I never had an allowance:)

They get $1 per week if they do their chores and help around the house. They have chores like helping to empty the dishwasher, clearing off/wiping the table, cleaning up toys, their room, etc. I love the idea of teaching them responsibility and helping and working hard for money, too. They tend to think it grows on trees!! I wish.

Both boys got a few dollars each from their loving Grandma and Great Grandma this past weekend and we divided them up in the jars. I helped them put the same amount in each jar and then choose where they wanted their last dollar to go. Zakkai chose the "Spend" jar and Samuel, who had a few extra coins he had found on the ground, surprisingly chose the "Give" jar! I really hope we can teach them to give to others and to be careful about what they spend their money on.

A little while later, after we did the jars, Zakkai came up to me and said, "Mommy, if I get $100 dollars, I'm going to put it in my "Save" jar and give it to you because you don't always have enough money for things."

Ah, such sweetness! I really hope this turns out to be a good lesson, that teaches them compassion, carefulness and wisdom. I hope I can always be willing to learn those things, too.....

Monday, October 22, 2012

Steeeerike Two!

We went from a gorgeous perfect fall day to a nasty, rainy one! Midwest weather can change in the blink of an eye. Oy.

My Z-man was back at school today. His teacher said he did great! Ben tried to instruct him to stay a foot away from everyone instead of getting right in their faces (5 year olds aren't known for their respect of personal space~esp this one!) but on our walk to school, we met up with some good friends and 5 seconds later he and his buddy were hugging:)

Yesterday, the kiddos and I went to buy some supplies for their Halloween costumes (which the boys are super excited about) and Eliana decided she needed some Daddy snuggles first. You can see the pure bliss on his face:) She seriously just laid like this on him for at least 10 minutes without moving.

 I am so thankful that she will never have to wonder if her Daddy loves her. And I pray that his love will show her how wonderful our Father's love is. Precious.

Unfortunately, the mutant virus that Zakkai had may possibly have spread to E because she very quickly went downhill this afternoon. She was completely fine when she woke up from her nap. We went to get the boys and she was really quiet in her stroller but as soon as we came inside, she started crying. Really sad tears. She cried for 10-15 minutes and I couldn't figure out what was wrong! Then, to make things even stranger, she fell asleep on my chest for a little bit.

That's when I became very suspicious. My suspicions were founded when her cheeks turned bright red, she felt really warm, she didn't want me to put her down and she pushed away her dinner. She's been tucked into bed since before 6pm. I'm really hoping she doesn't get as sick as Z did! Poor thing just got over her sickness from a few weeks ago.

Darn germs. I'm thinking of inventing a bubble to put my kids in from October thru April. I might even make one for myself. My great contribution to the world:)

Signing off from Germyville....

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Park Time!

 What a beautiful day today! We took advantage of the gorgeous weather and walked down to one of our favorite parks. And I took advantage of it to take some pictures of my favorite people!

The boys, having fun swinging;) Zakkai is feeling much better today! He went downhill very quickly on Thursday and ended up having a croup attack and having major trouble breathing all night, vomiting through the night and was very sick. I took him to the drs Fri afternoon and he has a nasty virus which can lead to croup and all the other symptoms he has had. He's congested and coughing, still hoarse but feeling better, thankfully!

Eliana had a blast sliding and swinging the whole time at the park!

And before we left, I begged my sweet munchkins for a picture. Samuel groaned but then cooperated nicely!

Love these three!

Eliana loves being right with her brothers!

And they love having her close to them:)

Then we tried for tummy shots.

She wanted so badly to copy them and put her chin in her hands but it wasn't quite working. Ah, she is so cute!

So she decided to kneel instead:) They are growing so quickly!

And then we started our trek home:)

Really, could they be any sweeter?

A beautiful day in every way!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Eliana's present!

 Several months ago, a friend of ours from Chicago, who has 2 girls, asked me if I wanted to have some of their stuff they were getting rid of for an upcoming move. I said sure because who doesn't like free stuff!

One of the things she offered to us was a dollhouse, something I eventually wanted to get for Eliana! I was really excited until I saw it and then I seriously considered throwing it away.

(*sidenote: you can click on a picture in this post and see a slideshow of each picture in the post. They show up a little bigger!)

It was rickety, had dirty,  bright yellow walls, a fake wood floor and a colored on bright red roof.

Not exactly what I was hoping for! But then after I brought it home, I looked over it carefully and began to hatch a plan in my mind to redo the house.

The house came with several dolls in hideous, mismatched, dirty clothes. They are now getting make-overs! Several of them have gotten/are getting new hair, newly painted faces and bodies and new clothes! This is taking a lot longer than I thought because it's hard to sew itty bitty clothes!

It also came with a lot of wooden furniture, several pieces of which needed to be glued together.

One day I asked Ben if he would like to work on the project with me and get it ready for her birthday. Surprisingly, he jumped on the idea and our special project was born!!

We've spent the last couple of weeks sanding, painting, re-roofing and more!

Without further ado, here is our special gift for a special girl!!

This is the "bathroom." It has a light gray printed wallpaper, new woodfloors and some cute little bathroom furniture!

This is the "kitchen." It has a pretty aqua colored wallpaper, a table and chairs, a stove and a couple other pieces of furniture. Grandma and Grandpa doll don't need too much re-doing so they are allowed in the house already:)

The new roof! Ben put wooden shingles on the whole roof and we painted it a really pretty blue-gray color (it looks really blue in the picture but it's not as blue in person.)

The bedroom. There's a little kitty sleeping on the bed:) I still have to make new bedding for the bed!

Here is the bedroom; with 2 shades of pink wall paper. The actual wallpaper for a dollhouse was really expensive so I bought several sheets of scrapbooking paper and used my craft glue and some careful measuring and voila! Wallpaper!

And the living room. This has a pretty green wallpaper and little wall picture. This is one of the dolls that I redid. She got new hair and new clothes. She really needed it! (in the above pic of all the dolls, she was the one with the red and white outfit on the right.)

The floors took me several days to do but I am SO glad that I did them. The old floors were so dull and I really wanted wood floors. To buy wood floors for a dollhouse is at least $13 a piece and I would've needed to buy 3-4! Instead, since this was a budget project, I used some brown craft paint I already had, bought a couple more (to mix colors) and a coating for the finish.

First I painted the floors a couple of times. Then I marked out all of the planks with pencil, then with a special permanent marker pen and then put 2 coats of finish on it to give it a semi-gloss. I like it!

The shingles aren't perfect because some weren't perfectly straight but I think Ben did an awesome job! And it looks way better than it did before. We decided if we can't have our own house, we can have fun fixing up a dollhouse:)

Eliana has seen us fixing it up little by little but hasn't been allowed to play with it til today! We set up all the furniture last night and brought her down to play this morning.

She said, "House!!" and got down immediately and started checking out the dolls, putting them in the bathtub or in bed and moving around furniture. She spent a lot of time playing with it today!

We still have a few finishing touches: some rugs, a few more pieces of furniture sometime, the remaining dolls who are still getting beautified and maybe even a little lighting someday!

All in all, it costed about $30 for supplies to fix up a free dollhouse. Not bad!! We're so happy she has something to play with and that we could put a lot of time and love into fixing it up for her.

We'll probably have just as much fun playing with it as she will:)