the weather is simply beautiful 
70's... blue sky...breezy
we are supposed to be even cooler tomorrow  
highs in the 60's coming this weekend
snuggle weather

Aubrey and I spent a quiet day at home
playing with silly plastic bracelets
put them on
take them off
put them on...you get the picture
hiding and finding some of her favorite animals
panda, zebra and pink kitty cat

then they all went for a ride

we had to get outside to enjoy the beautiful weather
this little sweetie of mine would live outside if she could

oh...Janey wanted me to leave "Babi" on the kitchen counter this morning
I think she is guarding her bowl of homecoming parade candy.....

Hope your day has been 
and beautiful
and filled with lovely little things.
Enjoy the day,


A Happy Happy Birthday

whew...what a whirlwind birthday weekend!
it had just a bit of all my favorite things
time alone to reflect (and shop)
time to eat yummy home cooked food 
time to eat yummy restaurant food
time to celebrate with friends and
time to love this sweet little family I adore

Riley made me an adorable pop up card that said "Mom rocks!"
a homemade watercolor puzzle
and wrapped up some Tootsie Rolls

Janey made a beautiful card and a coupon 
the coupon was two-sided
one side was good for a ride on the "Love Bus"
the other side for a "Spa Day"
she said I could use them as often as I wanted and they never expire
now that is my kind of coupon

see that big wrapped present
want to know what it is????
a new computer monitor
quite the surprise and one the girls were thrilled about too
makes playing math games and looking at American Girl
all the more exciting

Thank you for a wonderful birthday!


last night I cashed in my "Love Bus" coupon
Janey said the Love Bus can be anywhere really
last night it was snuggling under the covers in her bed
she said the Love Bus is all about
chatting and getting to know each other
and that there are no rules on the Love Bus
we talked
laughed and 
I think I'll be booking a return trip real soon
Love You Janey Brooke


this week

it was spirit week  at Riley's school
some of her favorites were....

mismatch day and pajama day                                                                

mismatch day was a little tough for her.
she kept asking me..."are you SURE it's mismatch day"?
poor little sweetie didn't want to be in plaid and polka dots with two different shoes for nothin'

Aubrey and I met Riley for lunch on Wednesday
i asked her if she wanted to stay at school and we could all eat with her friends
or we could sign-out and go to Subway
she choose Subway

she says the cafeteria is hot, stuffy and smells like spoiled ranch....
sad but true

we had such a good time
40 minutes just flew by
she wants to do it again next week
love that girl

Aubrey and I met Janey for lunch on Thursday
she wanted to stay at school and invite her friend Ellen to sit with us

little miss Janey is just too cute
do you know she has a system for eating her lunch
first she checks to see what her "big thing" is
eats some of her "little things"
then saves her favorite "little things" for after her "big thing"
love that girl

it was so hot out we only stayed at recess for a bit
Janey walked us to the edge of the playground and gave me the biggest kiss and hug

she told me last night that she cried when I left
she doesn't like seeing me walk away
love that girl

see the fun my three beauties have before breakfast

how can my "breakfast time girls" compete with that??????

nap time has been so inconsistent this week
sometimes two a day
sometimes only one morning nap
please tell me this is not the beginning of the end of two naps
waking up at 11:30 and then no afternoon nap makes for a
very long day

but just look at her
i guess i can deal

i have been way behind on my "housely duties" this week
i am blaming no naps and blogs
it's really more like no self discipline

big homecoming parade today
the girls decided to dress Aubrey in the right colors too

we've got spirit yes we do
we've got spirit how 'bout you!

Hope you have a Happy Friday 
and a Wonderful Weekend,



you are 15 months and 11 days old today.
where has the time gone my sweet

you are so ready to grow up
move on to big girl things
and big girl places
i just want to keep you little

you love sitting at the island with the big girls to eat
waffles and strawberries...yum
to keep you content we usually always play and sing
"Where's your chin Aubrey?"
"If you're happy and you know it clap your hands"
you make me happy

you have a thing for helmets
and other adorable get-ups
you make me smile

you love books
they are one of your very favorite things
you always look for the doggies
pucker up your lips
blow in and out
and try so hard to say...."ruff"

you are a climber
a daredevil
and an outside girl
you love to get our shoes
bring them to me to put on
and then bang on the back door to go out

i love being your mommy 
every. single. day.
i love you Aubrey Kate!


Alone Time

My birthday is Saturday.
The big 43!!
Wow...when did that happen?
I still feel like I'm in my very early 30's at least!:)

Yesterday a present came in the mail.
It was from my mom and dad.

A beautiful hand painted dish for eating yummies out of.
A hand beaded bracelet.
A bag of M&M's because my mom knows me and shares my sweet tooth.
and a note with $3 attached.

The note said to enjoy a milkshake next time I had alone time.
You can see the attached $3 is gone
I don't waist time when the solo enjoyment of milkshakes are involved.

Since Dave was home that day
I grabbed my $3 and headed to pick up the girls from school a bit early

I took the L O N G way and
I took this along with me.

It was the perfectly delicious way to spend my afternoon alone time.
Thanks mom!

Have you had any good alone time lately?
Enjoy the day,



Saturday morning bright and early,  Dave and Janey headed to soccer.
Riley, Aubrey and I headed to our local garden shop.
We were looking for a few fall touches and mums for the front porch.

Sometimes the ride there is more then half the fun.
We talked about school and life.
Riley said she thought we would have been best friends when I was in third grade.
I agreed...without a doubt.
We talked of things we would do together...write notes, sit on top of the monkey bars, laugh.
She said she was glad I was her mom.

Riley and I both LOVE fall.
It was fun looking at all  the orange and brown goodness together.
She loves to help me pick out things for the house.
She is my little nester in training.
After finding the perfect mums, we headed over to watch Janey's game.
I have got to find a way to get good soccer pictures with Aubrey in the carrier...and fast!

Later, after Riley's game, Janey and I headed out for our date.
A shoe finding date.
We talked about school, life and marriage.
She wanted to know all about when I met Daddy...again!
Was "You're going to be my husband", the first thing I thought when I saw him???
She also wanted to know who picks out your husband for you...you or your parents?
We went from store to store holding hands.
Janey twirled, spun and flitted about like only Janey can do.
It was lovely.

Daddy and Riley were busy while we were gone.

I think that made Aubrey very happy
I'm guessing this probably made her smile a bit too.

Dave worked in the yard a bit.
Made some rockin pizza.
And we finished the day with the ice-cream truck.
It was a great Saturday.

Hope you had a great Saturday too!
Enjoy the day,

Sorry for the lack of pictures in this post...my camera and I are not on very good terms right now.  
I want to trade her in....BAD!:)  Should a beginner think of an SLR??  Canon, Nikon???  

Sometimes a few of you will ask me a question in one of your comments, I usually try and pop over to your blog to answer.  I think from now on I am going to answer right here if that's ok. :)

Do you guys use Google Reader or your Dashboard for blog reading....just curious as to the benefits of Goggle Reader.  
I use my dashboard



Because I Couldn't Pick...

just one!

Have a wonderful weekend!
Enjoy. every. minute!


Laundry Room Re-Do

I have always dreamed of having a gorgeous mudroom.  A room with a bench for taking off shoes and pretty baskets for storing all of life's odds and ends. A place where we could showcase some one of a kind art and a place to check our "look" before heading out into the world.  So when we ended up with quite a bit of molding left over from our basement project, we decided to turn our laundry room into the mudroom we've always wanted.

I have seen so many great mudrooms floating around out there in blog land, but our space is a bit unique.  The room is quite small and with the positioning of the washer and dryer, we only had one wall to work with.  We used to have a bench in this space with baskets underneath for storing shoes and a peg rack over top for hanging backpacks and coats. The problem with this set up was, the bench took up a lot of room, we had no storage for hats, scarves and gloves and the pegs did not hold a backpack and coat very well at all.  (sorry no before shots!)

Since our space was a bit unique, we had to make custom plans.  {we did visit Ana-White.com , formerly Knock-Off Wood, for some great inspiration though} Dave started by making the bench out of MDF. We knew we wanted it to be narrow so it wouldn't take up much space in the room and we needed 8 cubbies...a space for shoes and a space for  baskets to hold hats, scarves and mittens.  {The only shoes that actually come into the mudroom are the girls school shoes and church shoes. We keep their flip-flops, Crocs and soccer shoes in the garage.}  After the bench was primed and painted we did the same to the wall and all of the molding pieces.  

I only had one tiny before shot of the backpacks hanging on the pegs.

Next, we added the hooks and baskets.

It's actually quite difficult to take good pictures of a teeny tiny laundry room. :) It was tough to get a good angle and to see the whole space at once.  Don't Jen's baskets fit perfectly??:)  I can't decide about the carpet.  It was a really inexpensive one from Target.  I think in a way it grounds the space... but still deciding on that one.   When hanging the hooks we made sure to measure the longest winter coat in the house (mine) to make sure it would clear the bench.  The girls can reach the hooks quite easily by just putting one knee up on the bench.  

My future plans are to frame some of their art work, or  maybe even have them paint a self-portrait on a canvas to prop up over their area.  I would also love to find a cool mirror for the small wall on the other side of the built-in area.

I couldn't be happier with the way this project came out.  Since we had so many materials left-over, it really was quite inexpensive to complete.  I think my poor sweet honey is a bit "projected" out bless his heart!  I have promised  this is the end of our adventures... till winter...when things slow down a bit. :)  Now that he has mastered his carpentry skills, I think we are ready for some big time shelves and bookcases in the basement.  What do ya think??  
Enjoy the day,

I used the word "we" a lot...it was 95% my wonderful husband who completed this project.  I was just there to keep the girls happy, slop on some paint, wipe some caulking and tell if the hooks were level. :)  
Thanks again baby...I love you!


Cabin Camping

Riley's Brownie Troop went cabin camping this weekend.  This activity has been planned for months.  Every time we discussed this upcoming event, we always got the same response..."No way Mom".

Riley is such a little homebody.  She is driven by routines and loves things just so.  To her the thought of sleeping somewhere other then her comfy bed with her stuffed animals lined up behind her was out of the question.  Or so we thought...

Our plan had always been that she would go to the camp that evening, have all the typical camping fun, singing, crafts,  roasting marshmallows, and then I would pick her up right before lights-out.   Friday morning she surprised us all with "I think I want to give sleeping there a try".  I hid my shock and replied with a very calm..."ok".  Even though I was going to miss her like crazy and the mom in me didn't want her to be out from under my roof at night, I knew she was growing up and this had to be her decision.

She quickly got ready for school and ran upstairs with her printed list to pack and get everything ready. (Honestly, I think part of the thrill was packing...that girl loves to pack!)  In no time, her suitcase was ready and her sleeping bag and pillow were rolled up tight.  I was so surprised with her confidence when she packed her blanket and stuffed animals.  She didn't worry a bit about others reactions, instead she replied with a "they are all nice mom, they won't make fun of me".  

Janey came along for the big drop-off and to help get her bunk ready.  

Then we had to give hugs and kisses and say goodnight!:(

I have to admit, this was really hard for me.  This was the first time she has ever slept away from home.

Well I am happy to report that the phone did not ring at 1 in the morning like I thought it might.  When I picked her up she was all smiles and she had a wonderful time.  I was so proud of my little Riley that day.  This was a really big deal.  She had a fear and she met it head-on and sailed through it with flying colors.   My baby is growing up and I love the young lady she is becoming.

Meanwhile...back at home...Janey loved her little night "alone" with us.  After Aubrey was in bed we had a grand time.  In true Janey fashion, she made a schedule of the nights activities and had everything planned.  

We made popcorn and ginger ale.
Watched her Daisy Troop picture DVD
Played Monopoly Jr
Had a surprise game
and then went to bed.

We had a blast with you my spunky little monkey



Baked a few of our favorites this weekend.
If you have not tried these
yet, I am begging you to give them a try.

They smell heavenly while baking
 and there is an abundance of crumb topping.
I just love crumb topping!

Then we made these.
Boy were these ever yummy!
I love a good Oatmeal Cookie and these were simple and delicious. 

Any great recipes to share?
I think next, we will give Megan's
a try.

Hope you had a wonderful weekend.
Enjoy the day,