Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Tessa at Two

Tessa Mae recently turned two years old.  I wanted to share some of my favorite Tessa facts.

She is the sweetest girl I know.  We have enjoyed every second with her.

Some of my favorite moments are watching our oldest boy Jex, play with her.   His face lights up whenever he sees her. 

I am thankful everyday that we decided to have four children.  There are times in life before you make the decision to have another child that you question whether you should or not.  Once the child is here, it is never a question.  I worried before each child, but have had no regrets once they were here. 

That has always been the case with Tess.  I have made it a point to enjoy her even more because I know she is our last.


Tessa Mae has been so much fun at two.

She speaks her own language.  She jibber jabbers all day long.  Most of the time I have no idea what she is saying.  On the other hand, I can understand her very well when she really does try to talk.  She is learning words everyday.  The other kids call her a parrot.

She has never loved movies, but has recently become fascinated with Tangled.  I love peeking in on her as she watches Rapunzel sing.


All of our kids have gotten excited when Jonathan gets home, but I have never seen as much excitement as Tess seems to have.  She shrieks and giggles when she realizes daddy is home.

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She will ask me, “hold you?”  She says it pretty much all day.  She loves to snuggle and be held.

She loves to read stories.  She reads them to herself and says, “the end.”  She also loves when I read and sing to her.  Her favorite song is “Slippery fish.”  To which she calls “shishes.”

She is our only child that actually plays well by herself, and keeps herself entertained.


She loves to play hairdresser with my hair. She will comb, cut, and flat iron it with a pretend set Grandma gave her for her birthday.  Hence the reason that no one in our house is allowed to have scissors.  I have hidden them all, because I am so worried she will find them and “pretend” to play hairdresser on her own hair.  She has long hair for a two year old.  We get lots of comments on it.

She has decided that she wants to sleep in a big girl bed.  She sleeps in Stella’s bed for most of her naps.  I have ordered her toddler bed and it should be here any day.  It is so cute.  I can’t wait to see it.


She loves Mac n cheese.  She giggles the whole time you are making it. She also loves to help in the kitchen.


She still uses sign language while she talks.  It is so darn cute.

She is always happy, and is usually laughing too. She has the cutest little laugh.

You can hear Tessa’s cute laugh at the beginning of this video.

She is a very prissy little girl.  She loves to have her hair done, wear dresses and tu-tus.  She loves jewelry and makeup.  She even walks prissy.

One of my favorite things about Tess is her love of music.  She can’t help but get her groove on whenever she hears a beat.  It is the cutest things, and she is actually a pretty good dancer.


She is also very sensitive.  She does not like to be scolded or get in trouble.  If she does get in trouble, she lays her head down and won’t look at you. 

She is a very snuggly girl.  My favorite part about her.  I will snuggle with her any day.

Tessa Mae, we all love you very much.  I am not sure that I am okay with you being two.  I will make you a deal:  You can stay two as long as you don’t grow up any more.  I want you to stay my baby forever.  Deal? 

Monday, November 28, 2011


We had a really nice Thanksgiving. 

We have had a really enjoyable Holiday weekend.

Thanksgiving 2

We enjoyed Thanksgiving Day with some friends.  It was nice to have someone to get together with.

The kids seemed to enjoy dessert the very most. Can’t say I blame them.


Leading up to Thanksgiving, the kids enjoyed helping with a few projects.

They made place cards for the table.


We also made some cookies for dessert.  Tess loves to help in the kitchen. (I can’t get her out of this tu-tu.)


We made Gingersnaps.  Don’t you just love Gingersnaps this time of year?  We do. They are Jex’s favorite.

I have the best recipe.  I would love to share it with you.

Ginger Snaps

After Thanksgiving, I hit the black Friday sales and have still yet to recover.

We also enjoyed a few more meals with friends.  We watched some football, and had our second Thanksgiving with The Smith family in our ward.  They had a nice meal on Friday.

Saturday, we spent the day putting up all our Christmas stuff.  The kids enjoy helping. 

Christmas decorating

This is their tree.  We added some red ribbons from Ruby’s funeral to add a little Ruby to it.

I also did a little photography this weekend.  I have been busy with the holidays.  You can see some of my work here.

I love that the holidays are upon us.  It is such a fun time of year.  I am trying to focus on what is really important this year.  I am trying to keep it simple. 

Jex said that his favorite part of Christmas is when our house is all decorated.  I am so glad because it is a lot of work.  I enjoy when it is all decorated too.

Right now, we are listening to Christmas music and enjoying the lights on our tree.

Oh… and it has turned off cold outside; So, it feels like Christmas too.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Bathroom Printables Download working now

I had received a few emails that my kids’ bathroom printables were not downloading. 


I think I have fixed the problem now.

It has been working for me all along, but that is because I was logged in as ME.  I guess, you were unable to login as ME, so I decided I should make it work for YOU.

First start by clicking on the link.  You will have to download each file separately. 

If it asks you to upgrade or Free download, click free download and then you should be able to get it going.

Click on download, then save and choose a place to save it.  Then is should be there waiting for you.

Troubleshooting: sometimes I have had to click back and just start over when it wouldn’t get going.  I also had to allow the pop-ups by clicking on the bar across the top that pops up and blink at you.

I hope that helps.

Good Luck!! 

Here are the links again. 

Krysta’s bathroom printables

Andrea’s bathroom printables

I have also fixed the problem in the previous post.

If you are wanting to now more about what I am referring too, go here.


Monday, November 21, 2011

House Tour {Kids Bathroom}


Today, I wanted to share our kids’ bathroom.  I should really be sharing our bathroom since I just shared our bedroom.  I have had lots of emails about this particular room, so I wanted to just go ahead and share it now.

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This is one of my favorite spaces.  It screams children.


When we first moved in, I had Jonathan and Casey(Krysta’s husband) put up the bead board.  It really brightened the space in this small room.


A while back my sister gave me this shower curtain.  I love it so much that I based my colors for the bathroom off of it.  It is staying and everything else will have to work around it.

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I picked shabby curtain hooks to go with it.


About eighteen months ago, I made these printables to go in the bathroom. I wanted my children to read these words everyday.


I picked up some fun frames at the goodwill, painted them, and added the prints.  It is one of my favorite projects ever.


I think it is one of yours too.  I have had lots of people ask if I will share the printables.


Well today is your lucky day.  I am finally going to share them.  Here is what you will find in my bathroom printable pack:


(click on image above to download)

Not long after I did my kids bathroom, I helped my cute BFF re-do her kids bathroom too.  She decided she liked the printables enough to do it in her house as well.  Here is the link to check out her take on it. Take the time to visit it, you won’t be disappointed.  Her post also gives you another gallery wall idea. She is so creative.


I had to re-do the colors a bit for her room.  If you like her colors better, then it is really your lucky day because I am sharing hers as well.

This is what you will find in the Krysta printable pack:


(click on image above to download)

Just click on the pictures to take you to the download source.

I hope you enjoy them.  I would love to see what you do with them.  If you use them, please share with me what you use them for.

…and that completes the tour of my kids’ bathroom.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tessa’s Belated Party Part 2 {The party}

Yesterday, I shared pictures of Tessa’s birthday decorations.  Today, I am going to share the good stuff…

… the reason why I do what I do.

The good stuff to me is the smile on the face of my children. 

Yes, I enjoy putting together the party.  Planning the decorations, and the food.  I even enjoy decorating the cake(sometimes.)

I do it, because it makes our kids feel extra special one day a year that they don’t have to share with anyone. I do it because they are worth it. 

I am often asked why I put so much effort in to a party when we only have family parties.  My response to that is because I don’t do the party for any one else.  I enjoy knowing that all my effort is specifically for my children, and not to impress my guests.  I also enjoy the party so much more when I can focus all my attention on my child, and not hosting or giving my attention to other people.  I know… I am selfish, but I think for good reason.  It is what works for us.  Birthdays are to be cherished; and we try to do that in our home.


here are the cherished moments.


Tess is in love with her birthday cake.


She was a little tired.  We had to wake her up from her nap.  Yes, this selfish mother wanted plenty of light to get good pictures; darn time change. 

We decided to do the cake, treats and gifts in the afternoon; and her special dinner in the evening.  This plan actually worked out so well.  We spread the food out a little.


She surprised me a few weeks before her birthday.  I started singing happy birthday to her, and when I finished the song she immediately blew out candles.  She has been practicing.   She blew them out so fast at  her party that I almost missed it.  She did it on cue, right when she was supposed too, without being told.


Her cake was strawberry with buttercream icing.  Delish!!


She seemed to wake up a little more once she got some sugar in her.


The kids, and adults enjoyed the sugar too..


After treats, she opened the few gifts that she hadn’t opened yet.


She made sure to do some multitasking; she ate her marshmallow magic wand while she opened.

Tess has recently discovered Tangled.  She would watch it all day if I let her.  I found this dress, and now she wears it all day too.


And a cart to do some shopping just in case she gets hungry while she watches Tangled.


Once we finished with the treats and presents, I cleaned up and set the table for dinner. 


I love pretty dishes.


Tess loves homemade Mac N Cheese.  So that is what we had.

Then later that night, the kids decorated their own mini-cake.  I found some mini-bundt cake pans and just couldn’t resist.

Tessa Birthday Party9

The kids loved frosting them and adding the sprinkles. 

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It was the perfect way to end the night.

Tessa Birthday Party-0209

Happy Birthday girl.  We love you.  I hope your birthday was the best ever.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Tessa’s belated party Part 1 {the decorations}

two year old birthday announcement

Remember when Tessa turned two?  That was a rough day for me, but while I was away; my mother in law put together a little party.

However… I still wanted to celebrate with her two…(pun intended)

Tessa Birthday Party-0198

Just wanted to note: (all of these shots are straight out of my camera; no editing, minus the watermark.  Editing is eating up so much of my time. I want to just get the pictures right without having to edit so much.  I want to post more, so I will be editing less.  I kind of like them this way.  I hope you enjoy them too.)

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We celebrated for this little cutie last weekend.  My in-laws came back for another visit so it was the perfect time to host a party.

Tessa’s party theme was:

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Make a wish… and let it fly.

I used butterflies, bird and stars for the party decorations.

Tessa Birthday Party

Tessa kept saying all day, “happy?”  I would say, “yes, it is your happy.” 

I love how everything came together. 

The pink, purple and silver look so fun together.  I totally scored when I found the butterflies and birds in those colors.

Tessa Birthday Party-0178

I made a very simple cake this year, and love how it looks.  The topper was made out of scrapbook paper, feathers, and wooden skewers.

Tessa Birthday Party1

I made this pink chandelier out of pom-pom trim, and the butterflies.  It was a nice touch. 

The marshmallow magic wands are my favorite touch.  The kids enjoyed them too. 

Ingredients: Pink marshmallows, white chocolate, silver sprinkles and wooden skewers.

We drank right out of mason jars, labeled with chalkboard vinyl.  Stella wrote everyone’s name on the vinyl with chalk.  Fun stripped straws added the finishing touch. Delicious Strawberry Lemonade.  YUM!!!

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I love adding pictures to the table.  I think it is fun to see how she has changed. 

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A few fun pink pillows to the bench make for the final touch.

Oh Tess, we love you so much. 

I couldn’t have wished for a happier child.  You light up our home.

Stay tuned for Part 2 {the Party}.

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