Wednesday, September 25, 2013

We are potty trained!

And when I say we, I mean the girls :) As far as I know Zach and I are doing pretty well on our own ;)

Things I learned when potty training:

The first day is the hardest
Be patient
Then be even more patient
Make a BIG deal EVERYTIME they go in the beginning
Rewards WORK, we did a sticker chart and they LOVED it
Buy panties, LOTS of panties
Ask if they have to go ALL the time
Know that they WILL have accidents and prepare for it
We DID use pull ups for naps and outings at first, but told them it was their big girl diapers and not to pee in them, and for the most part they didn't! 

The girls are 3.5 and we finally potty trained them. I am GLAD we waited. We had tried once about 6 months ago and it really went awful. I decided then we would wait until after we went to Florida, because in all honesty I didn't want to stop every 5 minutes and deal with it on the beach, in the car so on and so forth.

Many parents I know have already potty trained their child at 2 and really I had NO desire, and it was totally a convenience factor. I was lazy. I am lazy, really. I am tired all the time. Working on it!

Anyway, I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOO glad I waited. I feel like they understood it alot quicker. Brienna hasn't had an accident since day 2 and is even holding it at night. Being 3.5 we can discuss it, talk about it and they get it. When I told them not to pee in the big girl diaper they didn't!

 Breadon took about a full week to go freely and even then it was at the end of the day, she held it ALL day and then would go (maybe) at the end of the day. But within the last week its like she had done it all along and is secretly laughing at us for worrying about her. She does EVERYTHING like that. They were BOTH pooping in the potty by like day 2 or 3 so that really hasn't been a huge issue. I am so proud of them!

We did the no pants thing, as in no bottoms no undies no nothing and it worked great... except for the few accidents! After they went for a full day we put on panties. And now we are wearing pants! It has been less  stressful than I had thought and I am SO glad for that!

Home school is going well! They are enjoying it and sometimes ask to do more school! More on that soon!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Homeschooling my Preschoolers

 Here are some family pics Me and Em took :) Enjoy those first! :D 


YES, I have chosen to home school the girls for their preschool years! This year we are doing preschool for threes and next year for 4's.

We chose Horizons from a family members personal expierence. She enjoyed the program for the younger ages! The preschool for 3's is new this year and we JUST got our stuff in the mail the other day.

I went through the entire book and MAYBE had to buy 15 dollars worth of supplies at the dollar store for the activities. I know there are other activities that I am sure I will have to get supplies for, but they give you so many options you could pick and choose which activities you want to do based on what you have and if you don't have something you can always come back to it later in the week!

The schedule is super flexible, you can do anywhere from 2-5 days a week. We are going to try 5 days, which is the lesson and one or two activities each day. They start with a bible story and verse and once we go over that, they have a workbook based activity to go with it and then a list of 5 or 6 other activities that touch on all the other subjects like science, math, language, PE, etc... You can do one activity a day or 4 depending on how much time you want to spend on it. So I plan on spending 1- 1.5 hours a day on lessons and activities, but if I wanted we could do all day or half day, and I really like that! Also it will get us into a routine of this is when school is, and this is what we do, and where we go. Even if a parent works you could still do a program like this if you wanted to do it 2 or 3 days a week when you are off. Or even in the evenings! Not that I am pushing it, just saying it is an option.

We haven't started church yet but I am hoping too once we get back from vacation and we start "school"! I really wanted to introduce the girls to God and Jesus and I really think this program will help me do it. Much of the curriculum is faith based and/or based around Bible stories.

I am not really worried about the social aspect of it, I plan on putting them in dance again, we will start church and once they get old enough (if we decide to pursue homeschooling), and do the integration program at the Christian school.

I still havent totally decided on homeschool forever yet, I am still working on that. I don't want to hinder my kids in any way but at the same time I dont feel like you HAVE to go to school, get made fun of, be a football star, nerd or whatever to become a good person. At any rate, this is what is working for me, or rather what MAY work for me and not for others. Thanks everyone! I am so ready for vacation! :)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

where did I go?

I have been neglecting my blog lately :( I have just been so busy with work I haven't had extra internet time to post for a while!  I am actually typing this on my phone while sitting with the girls!

We have had a vacation,  getting ready for another next month, completely remodeled a bathroom,  painted the upstairs, had my mom have eye surgery, had a birthday party and so much more.  I think I may have to have a photo dump to get it all out there!  But most everything is on my instagram.

I post alot on instagram, I really like to make photo books and it's easiest from instagram.  I need to start using my point and shoot more and stop using my phone. It's just way easier haha.  Hopefully once this bust streak calms down I can get back to regular blogging again...  So much to say,  so little time!  Thanks for tuning in and stay tuned for more soon!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Shaving cream paint!


They still talk about it!

Everything can be purchased from the dollar store unless you already have it on hand!
And don't mind the cell phone pics :)

Popsicle sticks (optional, I used them to "mix the paint")
Food coloring
Cheap foaming shaving cream (no gel or liquid)
Muffin tin
Old paint brushes

Everything but the food coloring was from the dollar store :) The shaving cream even smelled great!

I added a few drops of color and stirred it in!

I just added more coloring to make them brighter :)

If I HAD to suggest a change, it would be to not let them get the brushes wet. It kept causing the cream to expand and turn back white, but it still worked anyway and they had a blast! Also, I had read in a few different blogs that this can stain grout. Our upstairs shower is actually a tub that we "enclosed" with shower curtain liners and a fancy claw foot tub surround thing so they got to paint on the shower curtain and I rinsed it off, no stains, no worries! If you do think this activity or others with food coloring are going to stain something, buy a tension rod and a cheap 2 dollar liner and hang that when you are "painting" or doing any other bath activities! :) It can be rinsed and dried and put away for other uses!

Definately something we will be doing again! They had a blast!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

things I do because of my dad

Today is a weird day. It has been 2 years to the day that my Dad has been gone. Sometimes it feels like more, most of the time less. I always had looked to my dad for advice. Most of it was old school, and I like that.  Taking some of the past and bringing it to the future is really important to me. I feel like I was brought up in a totally different way because of it, having an older parent, especially someone like my Dad had its setbacks, trust me (teenage me would have alot to say right now), but now that I am older I am so much more thankful for it.

Some things I do or don't do because of my dad (some of it mom too, but they were so much a team, its kind of a given on some of these):
1. I do rub meat tenderizer into bug bites.  I even have the original container, with the stuff still in it that he used on us as kids, essentially its salt so it can't go bad!
2. I don't wear or buy anything with a peace sign.  That's really an entirely different post but him being in the military in the 60s and 70s has some to do with it.
3. My radio station is ALWAYS at 93.3 even though I don't think he would be listening to it now as they have changed the line up.  But every once and while they play a tune that reminds me of being in the car with my Dad.
4. I have yet to cut the girls hair.  As silly as it sounds he touched their hair when they were babies and I'm not ready to part with it yet. Silly,  I know.
5. I TRY to always eat the whole apple, like everything but the stem. Waste not, want not?!
6. I respect the elderly. Not so much because they are old, but because they have went through so much in their lives and they deserve respect. When I am old I will not have gone through HALF of what they went through in their lifetime.
7. I love tradition.Traditions are what make memories, and I love memories.
8. I will more than likely embarrass my kids, it keeps them grounded.
9. I have nothing but respect for our military and the flag, and I am patriotic. I have a hard time when people disgrace the flag. It happens EVERYDAY. It happens in this town. If you don't know if you are displaying it properly ask someone, if your flag is tore up turn it in to the boy scouts or your UAW hall, they can take care of it and buy a new one. Don't tie it to stuff, be mindful how you wear it.... SEE! It's a little ridiculous. I have had the honor of taking down a flag in ceremony. It's amazing. It makes you fall in love with how this country came to be. People have died for you whether you agree with it or not. And until you sign that dotted line and make the sacrifice yourself, support them.
10. I love my family. Even though we may not always see eye to eye, and hey sometimes we don't talk, they have made me who I am. Even thought he isn't here he influences me almost everyday, he helps me raise my kids. He obviously did something right.

I wish everyone could have had a Dad like mine.  I wish the most that my girls could know him. He loved them SOOOOO much. He had so much to teach them. So now it's my job to pass down all of his ways and make sure they know what I know. Even if it isn't today or tomorrow. I haven't let my Dad go, I feel like I deal with his passing in small pieces that are easier to digest. I think I wouldn't have been able to go on had it not been for my girls and family.

I love you Dad, and I miss you every single day. I am not ready to let  you go, I like to think of you as here just not here :)

Monday, April 29, 2013

To home school or not home school... that is my question...

Literally this blog has been sitting in my "too scared to post" file. It's not so much that I am scared but I am still thinking... alot. I know they are 2 years away from school! But I am not going to be scared to post things anymore!

Before you read this, I will warn that this is me and what I think, it isn't meant to be controversial or hurtful to anyone, these are my thoughts and opinions from my crazy brain. I am also definitely NOT saying that if you or your children go to public school that you are any less or any more than someone who doesn't. I am not saying it is wrong or bad or anything else, I am just helping myself make a huge decision and asking for some input.

As you may already know, I am a little bit of a control freak... I am an over worrier, an over planner and an over thinker... All kidding aside, I really am. The girls have just turned three and I am thinking towards their future in a new way.

 I have said since the beginning that the real world (okay real school) is too crazy and that I would like to home school them Pre-K thru 12, no questions asked. Have people made fun of me... yes, have people disagreed with me... yes, have people flat out told me my kids would be socially inept and that they would be weird home school kids... YES. Does this make me angry, you may ask... Not at all actually. I am totally all out for people doing things against the grain, being different and taking full advantage of their rights as an American citizen, or as a free human being on this planet... all I ask is that when or if you are ridiculed for such differences that you understand that not everyone is on the same page in this book of life, and its okay. Just as it's okay to be different it's okay for others to not agree with you. I think if people adopted a little of this attitude the world would be a better place, at any rate, NO I am not mad at anyone for thinking I am crazy. They can't think it any more than I can, so to each his own!

Anyway, back to my topic. Home schooling. I want my kids to have faith in their lives and we haven't been the best about getting them there. We are working on it, trust me. At any rate, I wanted them to have a faith based school experience, as well as a social one. You may think Christian school?! Can't afford it. Just can't. Can't. I would have to work full time to afford it, and quit my business and alot of other things, but if push came to shove I would so do, but I am getting to that.

I have talked with a family member about her kids that are home schooled. She has 3 amazingly well rounded children who have tons of friends, activities and are always busy!  They wear regular clothes and do regular stuff, they are sweet, nice and smart. Totally normal in every way. Whats wrong with that? They go to church, dance and cheer and all kinds of things. They are not socially inept!

I am attracted to home schooling for the faith factor, the fact that my children would be learning from me, and in our home, the freedom it will give us and so many more things. I want to be there for them however I can, whether they go to school at home or go to school down the street.

Maybe it was because of the way they were born, or maybe I feel like me being here every day is helping them in some weird way? I don't know. You almost can't have this opinion without someone getting their feelings hurt. Moms that have to work for financial reasons, or hey they just like to work, feel offended or hurt that they are not able to even have an option to home school or stay home or that I am looking down on Moms who do stay home and choose not to home school. This is simply not the case. I read alot of blogs and about 75% of the time I feel like I am failing in a NEW way, one I didn't even know about... I should have done this and that... We all struggle and social media is NOT helping. I want this to open myself up for others opinions not to ridicule or hurt anyone! :) Phew, went on a little tangent there, SORRY!

Going back to the Christian school thing, they do offer a dual program where the girls could attend a class or two which is more affordable but still gets them out of the house. They can take Spanish, music and more. That is a huge plus for me! They are also allowed to participate in school sports at the Christian school and at the high school.

I haven't decided 100%, but I am definitely leaning toward the home schooling. We (the husband and I) have decided to try the Pre-K for 3 years and the regular Pre-K and we will start this fall. We will see what we think and if we like it we will continue. I also know that Iowa has rules and reulations so if we do decide to home school, I know that we will have things to do to register them.

 Also, Breadon is going to help us make our decision too, of course she doesn't know that! She is still speech delayed and we are working on it. She is still a little socially behind so we want to make an educated decision and we want the best for our kids. In the end that is all that matters to me. If they turn 5 and Breadon is still struggling socially we will make the choice that is best for them at that time. 

Before I leave I would like to include, I am able to have my job and stay home most of the time, so this is an option for me. I understand that this is a lifestyle choice and not for everyone, I understand people have to work, moms AND dads, and in no way am I looking down on others. I also understand that not everyone can or wants to home school and that's okay too. I am just putting myself out there and looking for some help! :) Thank you for tuning in!

Monday, April 22, 2013


My kids could not have surprised me more, especially Breadon. She went right up there, not tears, no fear happy and smiley. Made my heart happy, and is making me tear up as I am writing it. They are my whole life, I thank God for letting them be a part of my life.

Uncle Chad got to skype from Honduras and see them dance which was amazing, technology is amazing. Zach's parents came and so did a ton of our family and friends. The flowers on our table are HUGE! :) We are loved, my kids are loved. 

To have people, doctors and others tell you all the things your kids won't do, can't do or may not do... and then see them up there surpassing all of that! GAH, we are truly blessed. More than anyone can know.

Dress Rehearsal Pics:

They are pretty cool kids, Briennas head piece fell off and she just kept going!!!! Now I think I took like 4 of the rest of photos, but they still came out amazing so thanks to my Mom, Zach and Emily! :)

Getting ready and Daddy's dance pics :) These were mostly taken by my Mom (Brienna getting ready) and Husband (Dance pics. I only had the chance to take a few)

 They aren't looking but eh, I don't care! We were a little rushed but adorbs lol :)

Then to the dance! Emily took these so I could enjoy the moment, I only cried a little at the end and then later when we got home. It was a big day for us all. I can't wait until we do it again, it was totally worth it!

Breadon looked for her Dad while dancing, it was cute. Brienna was all over the place but still doing her dance. The second time thru Breadon ran off stage to comfort one of the other little girls who was not going to come out, but came back out and finished it anyway. We went home after that because Breadon was tired and she was showing us by crying all the way to the car, she has never done well with a lot of commotion and I was surprised she hadn't wigged earlier! We were all ready to go home.
It was a fun day and they were amazing! :)