Wednesday, November 30, 2011

She made it to three... it's a miracle!

*As I was waiting for the many pictures to load for this post I thought I'd sneak in a quick bit of sewing, only to find Lila has snipped all the threads on my serger... making the title of this post no longer so tongue in cheek. grrr...

We started out celebrating this morning by watching an animated e-card from Grandma and Grandpa T. I'm pretty sure she watched it twenty times in as many minutes, so good choice on the card Grandma T. She loved it!

A quick break to get dressed for the day and then right back to the computer!

I let the older two kids play hooky today and we went to the Festival of Trees to watch our friend Libby perform with her dance group. We spent a wonderful three and a half hours wandering the festival looking at trees, gingerbread houses and quilts, sampling tasty treats, making crafts and playing games at the Kid's Korner, and even getting to visit with Santa and tell him our hopes for Christmas morning! On the way home we went to Build-a-Bear and Lila got to make a new friend, while the older two each got to pick out a new outfit for their animals.

Lila was simply adorable. She was wearing the birthday girl sash and every person she interacted with asked her if it was her birthday (that made me laugh inside, "no it's not her birthday, but her drama queen sash was in the wash...) and how old she was. And I missed it all! I left the camera at home, bad blogger! I was so frustrated because I'd taken the time to download all the pictures and put in new batteries, so it would be ready for all the photo ops. 

So instead I'll just have to share a bunch of pictures from her party tonight.
We went over to Pa Dave's and had Chinese for dinner. Lila got the perfect fortune in her cookie! It said, "A new challenge will soon come your way." All the grown ups looked at each other and said, "Potty training!"

 After dinner we were joined by Grandma-great, Grandpa Jerry, Dinee and her girls for presents and cake.

Evie, snuggling her dad and showing off her bear's new outfit.

Lila showing her new bunny.

She wasn't excited to have all the attention on her at all...

Some new outfits, this one from Grandma T.

Plaid and scottie dogs from Evie.

Her very own copy of Ella Enchanted from Jake!

She was thrilled!
(So was I because I've probably rented it thirty or forty times since this summer...)

A Minnie Mouse dress up doll from Dinee and girls.

A Minnie shirt from mommy.

Brian was in charge of taking pictures while I helped Lila with her gifts. He kept falling asleep and when I got after him for missing her reaction to some of her presents he had this excuse, "This camera can't keep up with me!"

I laughed so hard I cried.

Okay, back to Lila. 

Lila wanted a Minnie cake, so this is my attempt. I think it was successful because when she saw it she squealed and said, "Mom! You made me a Minnie cake! You're the best mom ever!"

Happy 3rd Birthday, Lila!
I hope your birthday wish comes true.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The last night of the terrible two's...

Tomorrow my baby will be three. (Although we have had an all day long argument discussion about why you can't just go from two to five, no matter how badly you might want to...) I am feeling, once again, the bittersweet realization that comes from watching your youngest child hit milestones and knowing that it's the last time for you as well. Tonight is the last time I will have a two year old and I am both sad and deliriously happy at the same time. I'm also more than a little bit terrified of what three will bring with this child, but that is an entirely different post.

So tonight when I tucked her into bed, I picked a extra long story and lay down next to her. I didn't get mad when she kept wiggling around and tried to play with my hair or the strings of my sweatshirt, I just snuggled her back down and kept reading. She fell asleep on my shoulder, and I just kept reading until the story was finished, enjoying the warm, still weight of her snuggled into my side and the soft little snores she makes in my ear. When I came to the end I closed the book, kissed her cheek, and wiped away a tear knowing that was the last time I will read a bed-time story to my two year old.

As I sat down to post I read back over what I had written when she was born and for each of her birthdays, and cried a little more. Mostly because what I wrote last year is still almost all true, only the attitude and stubbornness quotient has seemed to multiply exponentially (and again, it makes me scared for the coming year). And a little bit because when she was born there was so much sadness about my mom mixed into that experience, plus the whole "I can't believe my baby is so big" thing.

Tonight I will be melancholy, and mourn the passing of time and that my babies aren't babies anymore. Tomorrow I will be happy and ready to make some special birthday memories. After all, it's the last time I'll get to celebrate a 3rd birthday with my child...

Monday, November 28, 2011

I understand why some animals eat their young...

I probably shouldn't be posting right now. I should walk away from the computer, count to 10, do some deep breathing exercises, and come back to post when I am not literally quivering with rage. It never ceases to amaze me that a tiny little person who doesn't even come up to my waist yet, can create such total anarchy and chaos in a relatively short time. (I'm honestly not even sure what this one was about, I think it had something to do with bread...)

We have had two very crazy, stressful weeks. We traveled, we got sick, we got better, we cleaned, we had guests, we celebrated a holiday, we partied, we traveled some more, we haven't gone to bed on time more than twice in that time. I get it. Her schedule is all out of whack, her little body and mind are on meltdown and she doesn't have any other coping skills at this point other than screaming like an incoherent little banshee.

I love my daughter dearly but if she lives to see three it might be a miracle (and her birthday is in only two days). Now if you'll excuse me I think I'll go have a crying, screaming, meltdown myself... or maybe not. Writing is pretty cathartic. At least I'm not shaking with the effort it took to not smack her anymore.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Posting from Idaho...

I am borrowing Tiffany's computer to post from fabulous Idaho this evening! Lila and I drove Tiffany and her kiddos home today and are spending the night, because even though Brian is fine with the idea of himself driving to Idaho and back in one day he doesn't think that I can do it…  I don't care though. It just gave me more time to hang out with Tiff.  We got here around 7, ate dinner, and then watched Sense and Sensibility while stitching on our advent calendars. All around a good night. Tomorrow I'll get up early and head home so I can be there in time to pick up Evie from school. The good news is when the older kids and Brian called to say good night, they all told me how much they missed me. Sounds like I've got good job security!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Best. Party. Ever!

Tonight we went to a royal ball hosted by Rapunzel!

Every moment was magical.

I will do a better post with all the details once I get the pictures from everyone, so for tonight I just have to say thank you so much to Rapunzel and Flynn Ryder for giving our family such an amazing experience!

Friday, November 25, 2011

It's tradition...

We put up our tree the day after Thanksgiving. I was so excited to decorate because this year I got a new tree and all new decorations! (We also ended up getting new lights because ours got fried because of our stupid screwy wiring last year... but that's a whole other story.)

I'm loving peppermint this year, and have had so much fun looking for ornaments over the past couple of weeks. The only things not new this year are my snowflakes and the picture ornaments I do of my kids every year. 

I'm carrying the peppermint theme over to the mantle. I can't decide between the peppermint hat box and the apothecary jars filled with peppermint candies for my favorite. 

I let the kids pull out the little tree and set it up downstairs, and decorate it all by themselves!
That's tradition too.
 That way I can have my pretty, themed tree and not fill guilty for not letting them help me decorate it...

Thursday, November 24, 2011

All grown up and cooking a turkey...

Thanksgiving this year was pretty different. And by different I mean small. My dad is back east visiting my brother's family so it was just going to be my sister, her husband and my family. My cousin Tiffany and her family came down to join us, so it was dinner for 10.

Caitlin, Tiffany and I started cooking last night.

We had lots to do and lists and plans and ingredients spread over every available surface in the kitchen.

We worked quite well together at first.

It wasn't a case of too many cooks in the kitchen...

as much as three very silly, very tired, easily entertained women.
(As I mentioned last night, Caite and Tiffany both snorted soda pop out their noses at some point.)

Caitlin kept laughing so hard she would fall down.

And there was a whole lot of this position happening as well...

Bent over and crossing the legs so as not to wet your pants because you are laughing so hard!
It was a long night but one of the most fun I've had in a long time. 

 We caught a few hours of sleep and then it was right back to cooking, cooking, cooking.
We had fun setting the tables all cute, especially the kid's table.

Tiff made the cute turkeys with crayons for tails and I printed off a bunch of Thanksgiving themed coloring and activity pages for them. And their names are spelled out with letter shaped cookies. 

I hit the wall as I was scrubbing the potatoes and had to take a caffeine break.

And then it was time to feast!
The turkey was so tender we didn't even have to carve it, it just fell apart. 
(The turkey was totally a group effort this year as I called my dad for step by step directions, wrote them down, and passed them on to Caite who followed them. Go team!)
We also had mashed potatoes and gravy, squash, corn, green beans, fruits, salad, and delicious homemade rolls. (The rolls were the main reason we were up baking into the wee hours of the morning, but oh, they were so worth it...)

And then, because we couldn't decide on one, we had a dessert bar that included:
Spice bites
 (gingerbread tartlets with a white chocolate and cream cheese filling)
Pumpkin pie
Chocolate chip cookies
Sticky buns
Rice krispie treats


The cute kids enjoying their coloring pages and spelling things with cookies.

The aftermath.


It was a good Thanksgiving and it's also good to know that if anything ever happened to my dad we would still be able to celebrate holidays that require you to cook a turkey...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving prep...

I am too busy baking and prepping for the big event tomorrow to post about it tonight. But I will tomorrow, with really awesome pictures. Because that's what bloggers do, we keep a camera in the kitchen to catch the highlights of preparing to cook a turkey. I don't know how this meal will taste, but I guarantee this is the most fun anyone ever had cooking for Thanksgiving. Both Caitlin and Tiffany have snorted soda pop out their nose at least once. Now that's just a party...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Introducing the sewing cubical...

The whole house isn't clean, but the sewing room cubical is finally done!


I was worried that one of the children would trigger a craft-alanche and be buried alive...

Now I'm ready for a flurry of Christmas sewing.

Plus I knew Tiffany was hoping to get some crafting time in while they are down for Thanksgiving, so obviously this was the most important space to have done.

That is one great big monkey off my back, and boy does it feel good!
Now excuse me as I hobble of to soak these sore muscles and take a pain pill or three.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Royal Ball

About a month ago my cousin's wife, Amy, called me and told me that she had entered our family in a contest to win a free princess party, and we had won! Not only did we win, but the sweet girl who runs the company, Megan, wanted to do more than just give our girls a fun party. So between them Amy and Megan have put together a fundraising event in the form of a royal ball this coming Saturday. Once again I am so grateful for people's generosity towards my family. We haven't told the kids yet what is happening. I think it is going to be such a fun surprise when we go to the party and they get to meet Rapunzel and Flynn Ryder in real life!  
I think I've mentioned here once or twice how much these girls love Tangled.
And then to find out that the party is for them...  let's just say I am hoping for some great pictures! 

Here is the link if you are interested in joining us or know someone who might love the chance to meet Rapunzel and win a party for themselves!

Please take a minute to check out Megan's site. 
She makes an amazing Rapunzel, or just about any other princess you can think of!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Best laid plans and all that...

Some of you may be wondering about my plan for cleaning my house and how that is all going?

It works great! 

At least it did for the first three days. 

So I assume that it would have worked great if I had been able to keep following my scheduled one room a day and not had three sick kids cooped up in the house creating extra laundry and chaos...

At least I know that my usual crazy whirlwind method mostly works too. 

And I have two days. 

That will be enough time... right?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

A day of almosts...

1. We are almost done with having to trick Lila into taking the nasty medicine. (One more dose!)

2. I almost got a free massage today. (I decided to fight with my husband and have a crying meltdown in the parking lot instead. It ended up being cathartic, but nowhere near as relaxing as a massage would have been...)

3. I almost got to go to a movie with my sister. (We decided to go to Tai Pan Trading and look at Christmas decorations instead...)

4. I'm almost ready to take on the turkey for Thanksgiving. (After shopping for Thanksgiving dinner tonight I realize that I have never been properly thankful to my parents and in-laws for the work and expense that goes into a Thanksgiving feast. So, belatedly, thank you Dad, Terrie and Jim for the many delicious holiday meals you have provided for us in the past...)

5. I'm almost ready to decorate my Christmas tree. (See #2, and also, I don't yet have a tree to decorate...)

6. I'm almost excited to have to teach the Sunbeams tomorrow. (With all three children sick and me having to teach, Brian was willing to stay home with the kids. I'm looking forward to sitting quietly through sacrament meeting and actually listening to the speakers and singing the hymns and did I mention sitting quietly...)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Coughs, croup and craziness!

Last night was awful. Poor Lila started coughing and the dreaded strider breathing that signals the onset of croup. Something we are all too familiar with around here. I called the doctor in the morning and got an appointment, and he quickly confirmed that it was croup. 

You can tell your almost three year old is really ill when they spend the whole day holding still, not speaking and mostly asleep. And they leave the mask on their faces for over two hours with no prompting from you, because after the doctors office we had to go pick up some sickness supplies like popsicles, vapor rub and distilled water for the humidifier.

Once home I worked really hard to get Lila some food and her medicine. I just love that she's double fisting the apple juice at this point. 

The bright spot of our day, we came home to a package from Denmark!

Grandma and Grandpa T. sent us an advent calendar. The kids can't wait to open it!

Miss Evie had two birthday parties to attend today! One of them was a ballerina tea party. We managed to cobble together a ballet outfit between the dress up box and her closet. After I put her hair up in a bun and added the bow she went to check herself out in the mirror. Her exact words, "Okay. This outfit is adorable!" I seriously need to get her into a dance class.

Lila wanted to dress up too. 
And I was too tired to care if she wanted to wander around dressed up like Minnie Mouse while trying to hack up a lung...

Complete with gloves.

Jake is such a sweet big brother. Even though he is sick himself he has been trying so hard all day to help take care of Lila. Tonight he sewed her this little heart pillow so she could have something to cuddle. (Because there is such a shortage of stuffed animals and blankets in this house...) 

She absolutely loves it! And Jake is so proud. 
But not as proud as I am of my sweet boy and his awesome crafting skills.