Monday, April 28, 2014


Can we talk about my kids' hair in the above picture??
Let's start with Luke.
The boy is INSISTENT that he wants to grow it long. Now I know we are the parents and could just tell him No...but why? If that's something he feels strongly about (and believe me, he does) than it's not a battle I even care to enter.  It's in a bit of an awkward, shaggy phase right now, but I have high hopes it'll find a natural shape soon. And I also know the boy is gorgeous no matter what's on top of his head.
On to Abbey.
Her only experience with hair trims and cuts has been at the hands of her Momma.
Poor thing.
Normally I do just quick little trim-ups and they are such small changes that you barely even notice.
And then every once in awhile, she moves or flinches or SOMETHING happens and there is a cut made poorly. Recently I had a short section I had to even up, which resulted in bangs half way up her forehead. Oops. Luckily, like her brother, we breed 'em adorable in this family so some ill-shaped bangs can't even touch how gorgeous she is.
Anyway, we went to OMSI recently...

As Spring begins we've been getting out more and more, but it IS the Pacific NW, so we've still had plenty of inside shenanigans as well. I've been lousy at documenting our life here lately, so I thought I'd just post a bit about what we've been up to, so in ten years I can look back and remember how our days looked with two Four Year Olds =)
The kids got tons of new Play-Doh accessories for their birthday and have had lots of fun creating all kinds of things...

Sometimes when they weather is not great, I have to get creative on ways to let my kiddos get some energy out...
On this particular day, I pulled out our futon mattress and made a "slide" for them to jump down. Not sure what it did to the quality of the mattress, but it sure entertained my kids for an afternoon!

Complete with a giant pile of blankets at the bottom =)
Family Movie Night! It's getting so fun as the twins get older. It's nice to be able to really settle into a movie, and have all four of us enjoy nearly the whole thing!

As the weather starts to clear up, we've been enjoying some afternoons at one park or another...

Abbey took this picture...

And Luke took this one...

Our two little monkeys getting ready to head to "Mickey Mouse Day" at school... =)

The kids just love Preschool. It's been such a positive experience for both of them! It's only 2 and a half hours, two days a week, but it's been just the right amount so far.
Their little class has 24 kids and 3 teachers. They start the morning all together, and then break into groups of 8 for the middle of the morning, then everyone gets back together again. Well, Luke and Abbey have always been in the same group of 8. Early in the school year, the teacher started to put them in different groups one day and Abbey freaked out! She did NOT want her brother being in a different area! (David and I were both kind of surprised to hear this, as our two have never really been attached at the hip, and are usually just curious where the other one is but not usually even playing together). After that the teacher told them she would never put them in separate groups again until they told her they were ready.
Well last week they tried separate groups for a bit, and did great! They each asked about each other, but were fine to be in a different area.
Being a twin must be SO cool.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter 2014


We had such a lovely Easter this year, I wanted to make sure to write about it ;)
On Saturday our Church had it's annual Epic Easter Egg Hunt. I work Saturday mornings, so Dave took the twins. It rained, but apparently Luke and Abbey were troopers!

Seriously, how cute are my people?!?

(And thanks to my husband who puts up with my request to take lots of pictures so I can see what fun my family had!)

Easter morning the kids woke up to a jelly bean trail leading to their Easter baskets...

This was the first year we've done Easter baskets, so the kids were surprised and thrilled! It was mostly coloring books and stickers from The Dollar Tree, but Luke also got two little SuperHero Squad action figures, and Abbey got a FurReal little kitty and an Anna (Frozen) clip doll.
They were both SO sweet about their gifts, they kept saying Thank You over and over, and Luke kept saying things like "Momma! How did you know I wanted Wolverine?!" Because I'm your Momma, that's how.

We got ready for Church, Luke wearing his very first tie.
 "Like a Daddy" ;)

The kids were in a little Easter program at Church that morning...

Abbey was SUCH a little performer up there! She was clapping and singing and doing all the motions and dancing in the in-betweens times. It was so adorable!

After Church we came home for lunch and naps. The kids and I all slept for a bit ;). Then David took them out in the yard to play while I finished up the side dishes for our Easter Ham. Yummmmmmmmm.
I made the same dinner for Christmas last year, and our family just loved it. It's become one of Dave's favorite meals, which is awesome because it is literally less prep than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich ;)

We ended the evening with a round of Crazy Eights, which is becoming more fun each time we play ;).
After the kids went to bed, David and I settled in to watch the Blazers in the NBA Playoffs.
What a game!!! It was the perfect end to such a fun day.

  What a blessing to be able to have such a wonderful day with my little family, celebrating the HOPE of Jesus.
I love Easter.
Happy resurrection, friends.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday

Today is Good Friday.
Today we remember what Jesus did for us. What it meant and still means today.
I did a lot of remembering today.
I'm sick. Again. And although I'm not nearly as sick as I was in early February, I still feel congested and exhausted and stuffy and headachy and exhausted and fevery and exhausted.
And I have these two 4 year olds.
Make no mistake, they are adorable, hilarious, beautiful, kind-hearted 4 year olds. But they are still 4 year olds. And they keep needing things. All day long.
And today I could barely take it. They just were incapable of leaving me alone for more than 14 consecutive seconds, and in combination with the sinus pressure I really worried my head might explode.
When lunch was finally over and Quiet Time was about to begin, I felt myself getting more and more desperate for my bed. For some quiet.
Before I left their room, I reminded them that Momma did not feel well, and told them I was going to try and nap while they were in there. I prompted them to recite the Quiet Time rules...stay in our beds, be quiet, don't mess with the curtains...made sure they each had enough books to look through to pass the time if they didn't nap, closed their door, walked the five paces to my bed and crashed on top of it.
I laid there for a minute and listened.
I could hear them in there whispering to each other.
I took a deep breath and prayed they wouldn't require an intervention to be reminded of the rules. I had no patience or discipline left in me.
Can't they just shut up for five minutes?!?!
(Don't judge me. If you're a mother of multiple young ones and never once let your mind think along those lines-congratulations. Your Gold Star is in the mail.)
I closed my eyes and prayed for patience. I prayed for grace.
And it worked...
My mind wandered back to a time in my life where I could rest easily. Where illness was annoying, but recovery came easier. If I didn't want to talk, or fill any snack cups with Goldfish crackers, I didn't have to.
My Pre-Momma life.
Back then if I was sick, I'd call into work, turn off my cell phone, and crawl into bed to sleep until whenever I happened to wake up. Everyone else I lived with was self-sufficient and needed nothing from me.
It sure was easier to be sick back then.
It was much, much quieter.
(And cleaner) 
The quiet.
That's was often very, very quiet around here...I remember...
Oh how I remember the quiet when I'd come home from visiting friends with little ones. Or on Christmas morning, when it was just Dave and I and the pets and we'd hoped that that was gonna be the Christmas we finally had a baby. Or when I'd sit on my living room floor and wrap gifts for another baby shower. Or when I looked down at another negative pregnancy test.
I hated the quiet.
I longed for a crying, messy, fussy, baby to hold.
For years, my heart ached in the quiet.
And one day we learned we were having two babies.
And it's rarely been quiet since.
(or clean)
Today I began to smile as I laid in my bed - exhausted - and listened to my babies whisper to each other in their room. I couldn't make out what they were saying, but I could tell they were having fun together, while still trying to obey the rules.
And my heart swelled.
I'm so grateful for the noise around here, even if it makes a sinus infection harder to handle.
Today I give thanks for so many things in my life.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

The vacation that wasn't.

Back in November I came across a Living Social deal for an overnight at a hotel on the Beach that also had an indoor pool. It was like $60 a night, so I snatched up two of the deals. They didn't expire until the end of February, and I knew we'd have plenty of time in early January while Dave was on break. 
We planned to go the first weekend in January, but when I got home from work on Friday night (with a plan of leaving Saturday morning...) I walked in the door to two feverish kids, one of which puked shortly before bedtime. We decided to postpone our vacation to another weekend. (you'll later learn why this is ironic)

We headed out to the beach on the afternoon of the last Friday in January, excited to spend two fun-filled nights at a hotel. 

As soon as we checked in, we changed into our suits and headed to the pool. Our kids have become such little guppies lately! They love swimming, and thanks to their puddle jumpers they've become pretty independent in the pool.

We swam for a long time, and then headed back to our room for Family Movie Night...

When we woke up the next morning, Dave wasn't feeling well. We had some breakfast, and he rallied so we could all go play on the beach =)

After our beach play, we headed into downtown Seaside to grab lunch and play for a bit...


By the afternoon, David was feeling really poorly. He stayed back in the hotel room while I took the twins to the pool...

That evening, Abbey started coughing and felt like she was getting a fever. I ended up making a late night run to the grocery store for children's Tylenol (which was SO frustrating...I swear this is the one time I've forgotten to pack it, and of course it's the one time it's needed)

She tossed and turned and coughed until around Midnight we finally realized none of us were going to get any sleep this way. Two outta four of us sick and all sharing one room? Nope. So I chugged a Red Bull and loaded up our family to drive us home.

About an hour into our trip, Abbey said she felt sick. About a second later she puked everywhere. All over her carseat and jammies. And we were on a poorly lit highway in the middle of no where.
We stripped her down and used baby wipes to clean her off. Luckily we had our bags of clothes for the weekend with us, so we had something clean to change her into.

We made it home a little after 2am, quickly bathed Abbey, and then we all went to bed.

I thought for sure the kids would sleep until 11am.

I was wrong.

They were up and raring to go by 8am. Well, Abbey was still feeling a little puny, but Luke was up to his usual shenanigans...

In the 15 days that followed, our little family passed around one horrible illness after another.
It was AWFUL.

Like, I can still hardly talk about it awful.

We ALL got really, really sick. And snowed in.
That's right, a random snow and ice storm came during this time as well.
The only bright side was the snow meant Dave and I didn't actually have to pick up the phone to call in sick to work.

Luke got a horrible, nasty cold. Dave had a nasty sinus infection. Abbey had bronchiolitis. I had a double ear infection, pneumonia, and a bruised rib from hacking so hard.


Abbey had to get a chest xray to rule out pneumonia...

...which, Thank God, it wasn't. But her bronchiolitis went on for so long, she finally was RX'd her first antibiotic ever. Six straight days of fever and feeling crummy. Poor thing!

And Luke, bless his heart, our boy smiled even with a mask on ;)

It was probably the sickest I have ever been. And Dave was so sick too. We were both trying to care for our sick children. And occasionally make a meal. And it went on for over 2 weeks.


But. We are all healthy now, and have been for quite some time. And I'm so, so grateful. That's the upside of being really sure appreciate being well again!!

And we're going to schedule a Beach Vacation Do Over for sometime in this Spring, because this one SO does not count.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A Pirate Party

On a Saturday in mid-March we hosted Abbey and Luke's 4th birthday party. We were lucky enough to have the option of using the Church again, only this time we decided to use the gym. Our Church hosts an Indoor Playpark once a week for the community, so it's well stocked with fun toys!
We did the food in the entry area to the gym. Decorations included our banner we've used every year ;)

Pinterest was full of fun Pirate Party ideas! I was so happy I was able to make it look pretty festive without spending very much money at all. We had several Jake & the Neverland Pirate toys and gear at our house that I just kind of placed around the tables. Balloons, streamers, tablecloths all from The Dollar Tree. I picked up eye patches and the Pin the Pirate game at Target on clearance. Hooray for thrifty fun ;)
For snacks we did "Fish & Chips", "Shark Bait"...

And my personal favorite, the Hummus Octopus!...

I did splurge on a small pack of Jake & the Neverland Pirate ceiling hangers to brighten the room up a bit ;)
I think because while we have two kids, we only get to throw one party makes me feel the need to spruce it up more than I probably would if we were having two separate parties.

How fun is Grandma Donna? She came in full Pirate attire, complete with a pouch full of Gold Dabloons. By the end of the party, all the party kids were coming up to her and saying "Pirate Grandma, can I have a Gold Dabloon?" Awesome.

Luke and Abbey love their Gaga!

We played a little Pin the Eye Patch on the Pirate...


Our 4 year old Pirate...

This party was by far the easiest to throw out of all four of their birthday parties. Having a giant, enclosed room that is full of fun toys and play equipment was totally perfect. The kids just played and played. We took a break for cake and snacks, and then just played some more. Easy Peasy.

We asked the kids if they wanted to be sang to together or separately, and they both said separately. We sang to Luke first.  He was so serious about it...

And Abbey second. She was equally reverent...

So crazy to believe these Monkey's are four years old...

We attempted to get a group shot, but it went poorly about as well as you'd think it would attempting to get sixteen 3-4 year olds together...

Another fun birthday party on the books ;)