The purpose of this blog is to capture some of the high lights and low lights of just normal day to day life. Our life is loud, busy, and fast, but we love it!


Leah's First Ponytail

It took some bribery (whoppers!) but I got her to wear it ALL day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Such a cutie and I love that I can see those adorable cheeks and her WHOLE face!

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Seven Years, Four Kids, An Amazing Husband, One Week

Well, it is almost here.  My trip.  Alone. No kids. My own agenda.  Seeing my friends and my family. The beach. Boston (best city ever!).  My brother!! 

People are shocked that David is taking off the week I am gone to stay home and "watch" the if he is a hired sitter! HA! It does not surprise me at all.  He is very involved with everything about the girls.  He is a master at bath time and bedtime.  He is way more fun than I am. 

Sure, there are some things I am doing to help while I am away....duh, I want him to succeed!  I made a meal list for the 7 days (yes, it does include Chick-Fil-A!), a daily schedule example (we do have a baby who naps two times a day), and some other notes of things I take for granted that I know.  I am happy to put all this together.  It will help him and give me peace of mind.  David also knows, that he can do things "his way" when I am not here.....well, as long as I don't know!

As long as no one has a chipped tooth when I get home I think all will be well. 

Here's to Jennifer time!  Wooooo Hooooo!!!!!

Cool Dude

I had to post this picture, just because it is stinkin' cute! Whenever the girls would put on sunglasses when they were little we always called them "cool dude." Here is our fourth cool dude. I just want to ingrain this image in my brain forever!
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A Wonderful Waste of Time

As a mom to 4 young girls I do not find myself with a lot of "free" time, especially when they are awake! Since we have started Accountable Kids again I do see that the house is cleaner and stays clean so I am not consumed with housework during the moments I am not holding Emma, playing with one or more of the girls, or making a meal.  This past week I decided to make a fun activity for Leah.  She loves "There was an Old Lady..." books and since everything seems to be checked out by school kids at our library the only one left was "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Trout!"  Silly.  She does not die in the end-I guess that only happens when you swallow a horse!  We have read it before and I got the idea to make an Old Lady and the items she ingests.  

Google, clip art, felt, tape, paper....and time to waste! 

She loved it and that is all that matters.
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Emma Walking

Yes, it has happened.  Yes, we are excited-I think sisters are the most excited.  Yes, I am a teeny bit sad.  Everything changes after this.....


4th of July

Happy 4th of July! It was a cloudy rainy day here in Arizona. It cleared up for a few hours so the big girls could watch fireworks with their Daddy. Wonderful. Am easy-going day- we watched movies, hung out, ate bbq food, and of course I had the girls dressed festive (mostly for my Mom because I know she loves stuff like that-since she is the one who buys them all the cute coordinating outfits!).

The picture I wanted.

The picture they wanted.

So much love in a picture. This is actually Emma dancing with Chiara-she yells at Chiara until she picks her up during a pandora dance party!

That tongue!  I see it ALL day!

Leah Jo....stopping for a quick picture and then back to dancing
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Chiara's New Cork Board

Another craft!  This is my fourth covered cork board.  My first was for Chiara when she was itty bitty.  It has princess crowns on it and is very girly.  I made one as a gift for her friend (years ago) and just made one for Mayah this year. 

Leah and Chiara did a room swap a few weeks ago.  So, Chiara gifted Leah her board and I told her I would make a new one for her.  I took her to JoAnn's so she could pick her fabric, ribbon, and accents.  I was surprised at the peacock print, but loved that it still had pink and a girly feel to it. 

I wanted to do buttons on the ribbon, but she insisted on the roses.  Her board.  Her choice.

It came out great and I made it in less than 30 minutes.  Just need to hang it and let her fill it with her pictures and personal touch!

One more before it all changes.....

I am not ready to say goodbye to the gummy smile.  Emma only has 2 bottom teeth that you really can't see most of the time.  Her two top teeth are coming down now and I am not ready.  New parents may get excited about these things, but for me it is a reminder that she continues to get older (I would say bigger, but then I just laugh!) and she is full of changes.  Gummy smile means baby.....teeth means toddler.  I am sure "toddling around" technically means toddler, but the teeth just gets me in my gut.  It changes their face.  Sigh.  So, I have been taking an excess of pictures of her this past week because I can see the teeth poking through-and she is miserable-so I know my time is limited with this baby smile. Yes, she is toddling around now on top of the teeth coming out.....I always have a hard time with this season.  I think knowing she is the last is making it a bit more bitter sweet.  Bigger sigh.

My Left-Handed Smarty Pants!

I have been a home schooling Momma for 4 years now.  Chiara was 3 when we started working together.  It was only about 15 minutes a day, but she just absorbed everything...and even better, retained it!  Chiara is starting third grade curriculum this year, Mayah is finishing an extended Kindergarten curriculum and will most likely start a first grade this fall.  Leah...well, Leah is 3 and reminds me so much of her oldest sister.  She absorbs EVERYTHING around her.  Song lyrics, letter sounds, movie quotes....inflection and ALL!  A-Mazing!  She continues to blow us away with what she knows and how well she remembers.  SPONGE. 

I have her using Reading Eggs right now, which I highly recommend.  Leah taught HERSELF how to use the computer.  My father joked one day, when Leah had disappeared onto the computer while we were all talking, that she was in there writing the newest version of Facebook!  HA!  No doubt!

Leah is my only left-handed daughter (for now, who knows about Miss Emma).   Teaching her to write is something I think about it often.  I can write with my left handed, but to do it properly is not as easy. I watch her write and just like the computer it seems she is just getting it.  Glory!  I brought the easel down so she could have something to work on/play with.  Funny how old things become new when you move them.  I am impressed with her writing and spelling!!!!!!!!!  For now I will keep her on Reading Eggs, Starfall, and learning through conversation (and obviously observation!).  We may start some formal time together this fall or in the new year, but like the her older sisters she will let me know when she is ready.

New Bike Trailer

David bought himself a new bike-his other one lasted him like 20 years or something. Ok, maybe not that long, but it was OLD. Anyway, I know the bike is better on his knee and hip than running and our girls LOVE bike riding.  So, David searched Craiglist and found this great bike trailer-I guess it is pretty high-end so the price we got it for was a steal!  David test drove all the girls in it, even though it is for Leah and Emma.  It was a big hit!  Of course watching this gorgeous guy exercise is enough for me to be sold on it!!!!!!!!!!
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Two Fish and a Tadpole

The three older girls took private swim lessons again this summer with the beautiful and lovely Rachelle Hardin. She is so great with the kids! We love her and her family. We decided to do four weeks worth of lessons this year because we were only doing twice a week. I am so happy with where each of them is at. Leah would not even put her face really in the water, other than blowing bubbles, before the second week. Even bath time was a, it's a cakewalk!  Mayah is swimming, but still needs a few breaks or a little help.  Chiara is full on swimming.  Mayah likes to swim at the surface, but Chiara likes to get deep in the pool.  I am so proud of all of them....major bonus....Rachelle is a home schooled kid, who has completed her high school years early and is going to CAC this fall.  What a great example to my girls!!!!!!!!!!!!

She played "Ring Around the Rosey" with Leah to get her under the water. She loved it and was so proud of herself.

Little swimming with some help

Mayah getting the ring before it touches the bottom!

Swimming!  This year they both did the breast stroke!

Go Chiara!

So happy they are getting this since last year the only time they went swimming was during lessons (due to having Emma in June).  
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Massive Wall hanging Made Cheap!

If you have not been on Pinterest yet you are surely missing out. I love that it is NOT like Facebook, but rather filled with great ideas about everything! I love crafts.  I am sort of crafty (though refilling staple guns seems to throw me off! David will laugh at that!)....I am willing to at least try something.  

I have been salivating over the gorgeous canvas wall hangings in friends homes.  They are VERY expensive though and my money can be better spent right now.  So, when I saw this idea for a HUGE (4x3!!!) wall hanging I had to give it a try.  I want to give credit to the blogger who shared the idea on Pinterest, you can read the how-to HERE.  Foam board, engineering print, spray glue, and black paint....cost is WELL UNDER $20!  Bonus, David helped me with cutting, placement, and hanging.  Any excuse to hang out with him!!!!

I love it.  I can't wait to make another one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here is the picture I took-it's funny how each girl's personality is in this picture.

Here it is hanging going up the first set of stairs.  Bigger than life-size....awesome!
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Avid Reader makes for a Little Chef

A few weeks ago Chiara checked out a cookbook from the library.  She has been reading through recipe after recipe. She asked if she could make these marble cupcakes.  We do not normally have flour in the house (David and I don't really eat any grains) so I bought her some.  She has been learning how to use the oven and read instructions.  She made these with very little help and I must say she did a fantastic job!  Everyone enjoyed them....and they were on the weekend of our anniversary so she said she made them for us.  Love.
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Celebrating 11 Years Married

June 23, 2001 was the first of "happiest days of my life!" I married the man I knew I would marry the day of our first date in December of 1997(he would tell you the same!). We still smile thinking about the first time we met (July 6, 1997)...we remember every detail-even though at the time we did not think anything of it. Amazing. Eleven years of marriage later we have a beautiful life together, four adorable girls, and things have never been better. We have learned a lot along the way, which you can read about HERE.  

For our anniversary this year I asked my parents to watch all FOUR girls (we had not yet left Emma).  David planned our dinner date and I had a surprise up my sleeve.  All four girls were spending the night at my parents, David had NO clue!  Just one night away in a hotel....oh, what a wonderful thing! I had an even bigger on.....
He took me to Kabuki, a Japanese/Sushi restaurant at Westgate.  A-Mazing food!!!  We ate so much Sashimi (we really do not eat rice), gyoza, tempura, and even some delicious cooked meat!  A spectacular mojito to top it off!  The pictures are so-so because we just used David's camera-I wanted to be fully present and not worry about taking pictures.  Ironically though David bought me a speed light for my camera!  He is so supportive of this new passion I have and I love him for it!

Here is some of the ridiculously good salmon sashimi.  

Sitting in front of the fountains

My BIG surprise! Next year for our anniversary we will be taking a 3 day cruise!!!!!!!  ALONE!  Woo Hoo!!!!  Nanny and Grampy are already booked and we set sail for Ensanada, Mexico June 14, 2013! 

 Love this guy!

Happy wife!

We enjoyed one of the fountain shows after dinner.

Can't wait until next year.....
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