Evie’s Mama Time Take 4

A fun afternoon spent with Evie Grace! ❤

We started out by making a stellar granola recipe.  It’s actually supposed to be a recipe for granola bars, but I tried that before and the consistency just is not going to make bars happen – sorry.  In spite of that part being a fail, these are really super tasty just as sticky granola.  I had made a container of it once before (for our Wisconsin trip) and Cabz and I really enjoyed it.  Opening butter is always the coveted helper task.

Measuring and dumping.  Oatmeal for the win!

While that was baking, we ran downstairs and did some pumpkin painting!  I had never tried this before, and it was really pretty fun. 🙂  Evie enjoyed adding lots of blue to hers of course.

Cheesin’!

Our finished products, before they were dried.

If you didn’t get pain on your fingers…. and toys…. and everywhere…. then it wasn’t really painting, right?

The girls all declared the granola a successful snack!

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Evelyn is Three!!!

Little Peanut turned 3!

Goodbye terrible twos, hello threenager!  I’m just kidding.  This kid has no attitude whatsoever – especially not after nap time.

Speaking of nap time….  Evie went through a phase where she gave up her afternoon nap, then she went back to napping consistently every day, and more recently she naps about 50% of the time.  A few months ago, I started just sending her to the basement with the option of quietly playing or sleeping.  It’s always a more peaceful Quiet Time when she chooses to sleep, but you can’t win ’em all.  Sometimes she will just pass out wherever she was playing.  She has even been known to conk out at the bottom of the steps in a heap of dirty shoes.

Although Evie has been weaned off her binks for so long I can’t even remember her with one, she apparently isn’t opposed to rediscovering the habit.  I found her asleep, sucking away on a doll binky that’s attached to one of their outfits.  Oh my word.

I loved when I happened upon her napping like this, with her sock “mitties.”  Abby went through a phase long ago where she did this every nap. haha

She weighs 31 1/2 pounds and is 3 feet 1 inch tall.

Evie Grace has very big emotions.  She is either REALLY HAPPY and life is AMAZING!  Or she is melting down in a complete mess and life is over as we know it!  She really doesn’t have a lot of medium ground.  For the sake of cuteness I’ll just stick with showing you some of her REALLY HAPPY moments. haha  Plus, I mean, that huge open mouth grin will never get old.  I hope she does that the rest of her life.  It’s my fav. ❤

I always seem to get that one shot where my kid looks way too grown up.  This was it for Evie.  I mean, where is my baby girl?!

Here she looks more like my Lil’ Peanut! ❤

Evie has been a very busy girl all summer!  Of course, what else could we expect from our go-go-GO personality child? haha  Evelyn’s most notable accomplishment was learning to ride her pedal bike (with no training wheels) at age 2.  She really started to figure it out about mid August, so 2 years 22 months.  She had the balance concept down pat from her nightly rides on the strider, but took longer to grasp the idea of pedaling.

Once she figured that out, she was good to go!

We’re still helping her perfect her braking skills, but she does well enough that I sometimes let her ride ahead of us on one of our 2 daily walks.

Somebody loves riding her bike!!  Whatever Big Sis does, Evie does too!

On that note…. Abigail learned how to pump a swing in September and Evie promptly figured it out too. haha  She really won’t be left behind!  She has faster success when someone gives her a small push to start, but I’ve seen her get herself going all on her own too.  Twerpy. ❤

In general, Evie Grace is a lover of swings!

Our little tot has always liked to live life on the wild side.  “If it’s not dangerous, it’s not worth doing” could be her life motto.

4-wheeler rides are Evie’s favorite.  She only wishes she could drive….

Peanut is as wild as she can possibly be on our tiny playground at home, but thrives on daredevil stunts at the big parks we visit.

And, as I mentioned before, there is no “only Abby.”  If Abby does it, Evie does it – more enthusiastically if anything.

Evie is probably the only child who could make me rethink the safety of baby swings….  She was actually completely parallel to the ground this day and screaming “HIGHER!!”

With all her wildness, there is bound to be a lot of scrapes.  Back when Evie was still doing the strider, and had just started really embracing riding it, we attempted the bike trail.  Now, Evie had just gotten to the point where she was really flying on it and we were planning to buy her a helmet asap.  Unfortunately, we didn’t get it before this bike trail trip and the very first big hill she had a terrible crash.  Poor baby.  I was pushing the umbrella stroller with Bud and had Elly in the front carrier.  Evie was zooming along behind me and Caleb was still back at the van getting Abby’s helmet on.  I looked back and saw Evie picking up way too much speed and called, “Slow down, Evie!!”  She wobbled slightly and then lost all control.  She somehow let go and went flying over the handlebars to a huge smashing on her face.  It was actually terrifying to witness.  I screamed for Caleb as I ran to her as fast as I could.  She seemed a bit stunned and I just had her lay on me while we waited for Cabz.  It looked so rough.  We ended up taking her to the ER because we thought they would do stitches for sure.  3+ hours later and they did absolutely nothing.  As per usual. haha  She healed up eventually, but boy did it take a while!  Brave little soul – still smiling away!

Although Evie is typically my little wild child, you wouldn’t believe this kid with a big swimming pool.  Talk about terrified!  It was all fun and games until I tried to put her in the water (WITH a life jacket on and while holding her).  NOTHING DOING.

Hanging on the ladder and floating on my raft were great fun though!

I guess I shouldn’t complain though.  It means she is less likely to try and climb into a pool when she isn’t fond of it.  She was a huge fan of our smaller kiddie pool all summer.  She was so proud of herself when she “figured out how to swim” (aka play on her stomach in the water).  “Look at me, Mama!!  I’m swimming!  I’m doing it!”  Uh…. well…. kinda.

Buckets are fun with pool time too.  Buckets are useful anytime tbh.

Probably Evie’s favorite pool time involved squirters.  We found some fun long ones at Wal-mart that the kids had a blast with all summer.  Spray bottles are fun sometimes too.

Squirters were also really handy for washing the van off.

Being outside is always our favorite.  For Evie, being outside = sticks!!  This girl loves her sticks.  The only time she isn’t holding or playing with one is when I have told her she needs to take a break because she was poking something (or someone…) she wasn’t supposed to.

Lately, she enjoys pretending they are her “weed whips” (aka, weed whipper).  That’s probably so she has an excuse to swing them around dangerously….

Evelyn is also a dirt/puddle/mud magnet.  If there is water sitting around anywhere in our yard, she is sure to be poking a stick in it or splashing her hands all over it.  Here she is playing with a bucket of dirt.  And yes… it miraculously usually ends up all over her mouth area as well.  Does that really taste good?!

One of Evelyn’s favorite outdoor activities this summer was when our neighbor friend (also named Evelyn) would come over and bring her bubble gun.

Oh, also trampolines.  Trampolines are a major hit with Evie.  This is on our “hope somebody buys us one of these someday” list. haha

Evie Grace continues to enjoy finding “treasures” and collecting them in her bucket.  My girls can be little hoarders if I let them.

Warm summer rain can be lots of fun!

Tree climbing has been getting more fun as Peanut figures it out.  She wants to go as high as Abby, but gets stuck easier because she’ll get up on branches she can’t get back down from. haha  This means, she is usually banned from tree climbing unless I’m right by them and can deal with it for a while.  Isn’t this the coolest tree ever?!  It’s at a park we walk to sometimes.

My girls are always hoping for pets.  Someday we will hopefully make that a reality!  Evie’s dream is to get a puppy and “a yittle calf” that she can ride on.  I haven’t broke it to her yet, but riding calves is not as fun as it sounds.  Been there done that.

Our friends recently had some puppies and my kids were in paradise getting to hold and cuddle them.  We need a puppy soooooooooo bad. haha

It’s always an AMAZING walk when we get to see “diggers”!!!  Evelyn loves watching construction.  She wasn’t running away in fear, she was running to me in joy to tell me all about the big digger she saw.  Just look at that grin a mile wide! 🙂

Chick-fil-A’s dress like a cow and eat free day happened a few months back.  It was a decided hit for Evelyn.  She was so excited about her cow ears that she wanted to leave them on even for bedtime.  She does make a pretty cute calf. ❤

This picture cracks me up.  I don’t know why, but I find it absolutely hilarious!!  She was just casually feeding her babe before nap time.  #breastisbest #justkidding #nothingtoseehere #hopeitcanstillbreathe

Evie loves her baby dolls.  She is especially obsessed with pretending they are “newborns.”  I’m not sure she exactly knows what that definition actually is, but she knows they are especially precious and tiny at that point.  She’ll come over with her baby all cuddled up, “Mama, look at my little baby!  It’s just a newborn!”  She saw this one I was trying to sell at our garage sale and carried it around constantly. haha

Lil’ Peanut really likes to be helpful.  I wish there was more she could successfully help with, but this is the training period.  The fruits will eventually come. haha  She is a pretty stellar grocery unloader though and husking sweetcorn?  Pro status.

Ev often wants to help with Elly, but as I’ve mentioned before, Elly is not really very receptive to help from her big sisters.  Abby will sometimes be allowed to help her, but Evie even less so.  This was a rare moment where Elly actually let Evelyn feed her something (which in and of itself is rather ridiculous at this point, since Elly has been self-feeding for, well…. a really long time).

This recent 3 year old can be quite the goofy goober.  She is very quick to get wild and nutty, especially at church after sitting still for a while.  If anyone tempts her to silliness, she is sure to minimally meet them halfway. *groan*

This next pic is a goofy face that Evie will pull out fairly frequently, especially in a social setting if she suddenly feels awkward. hahaha  Also, this picture does a good job showing it, so I’m going to take this opportunity to mention her adorable little top front teeth gap.  I thought those things were hereditary, but it must be from a fairly distant relation.  Either that or I have a bad memory.  I can’t think of anyone who has that other than some cousins of mine.

Picking flowers is so fun!!  I’ve probably said this before, but when we get our own house we won’t be spraying for dandelions.  Those are one of the best parts about having a yard!!  Do you know how much time and enjoyment kids will spend playing with dandelions?!  A LOT.  Just look at that happy face!  That is worth a yard of pretty yellow flowers if you ask me!  Plus, you are saving money and your yard just looks kind of sad and empty. 🙂

Speaking of happy, you would laugh to see how much fun our girls have with their “Laura bonnets!”

Evie Grace is still a little blondie.  I was for a lot of my childhood too, so it will probably stick for a while.  My hair became more of a lighter brown once I was teenager age probably?  Somewhere in there….

Evie’s favorite color is still blue.  She was pretty exited her blue winter coat from last year still fits her.  She wears some 3T and some 4T clothes now and size 8 or 9 shoes.

It’s funny how much closer in size Abby and Evie are lately!  They even share some clothes!

Evie and Abby have so much fun together most of the time.  Evelyn has really fine tuned the art of pretend play which makes her much better company in Abby’s opinion.  They love playing dolls together, Laura & Mary outside, puppy games, Pet Shop, cooking, anything really!  They do have their spats, but in general get along very well.  I think their relationship has improved quite a bit since Evie became more capable of doing things for herself and didn’t “need” to resist Abby’s attempts to help as frequently.  I would say they interact much more as peers these days.

Although Evie isn’t quite as interested in bugs as Abby, she enjoyed all the monarch butterfly fun we had over the summer too.  The picture on the left was right after Evie told me, “I’m feeding the bugs ‘cuz them is really hungry!”

You know I can’t resist good kid quotes. haha  Here they come….

-When Evelyn gets sent to her thinking area (aka time out), “Awww, man!!”

-Okay, these are some of my favs.  Evelyn has the best responses during evening family Bible time.  Daddy was reading about the bleeding woman.  D: “What do you think Jesus did to her?”  E (without batting an eye): “He killed him!!”

-D: “What animal (sheep) fell in the pit?”  E: “Um…. giraffe?”

-D: “How many coins did the man pay the workers who worked allllll day?”  E: “Like 20,000!”  D: “No, Evie.  One.  He gave them one coin.”

-D: “What did Jesus do with all those sick people?”  E: “He gived ’em kef’.”  (Her shortened version for “keifer” which is my daily healthy drink she loves. hahaha  Obviously all sick people need that.  What else?!)

-During Evie’s turn for prayer time she was praying away, looking all around the room as she prayed oh so “intently, when she spotted a fly on the window.  Without missing a beat, she prayed, “Thank you, God, that flies can fly.”  I bet that little stinker was never prayed over like that before!

-She was telling me all about the “whips” for a few days and I couldn’t make sense of it at all.  Finally, one day when we were walking she pointed at some tulips and said, “Look Mama!  See all the whips!” haha

-Weaves (leaves)

-Ooze (use)

-I fink so! (I think so)

-Patapillars (caterpillars)

-“I look like a different woman!!”  (every time she puts something on her head hahaha)

-After going up and then on our way down an elevator, a disappointed Evie said, “Why aren’t there any alligators in dis alligator sing?!”  Apparently she misinterpreted “elevator” for “alligator.” hahaha

-One Sunday I was sick and missed church.  Caleb went with the two older girls.  I asked him later how church was and Evie piped up, “It was weally good!!”  I asked what the sermon was about and Evie again interrupted, “Umm, we were learnin’ ’bout God!”

-We were at a friend’s house and Evie didn’t see the toilet paper.  She cried out, “They don’t have any toilet wipers!!”

-During Evie’s pretend play, I love when I hear things like, “‘Morning Time!!’ they yelled!”  hahaha

-Yittle (little)

-Wan (van)

-“Take a picture from me, Mama!!  Take a picture from me!” (of me)

-When she accidentally hurts me or the others, “Oh, I’m so sorry, Mama!  I’m so sorry I hurt you!  I’ll rub your feet later!”  “It’s okay, honey.  It’s okay Sweetie Pie! You’re okay!”  I think her ploy is to redirect so she doesn’t get in trouble. haha

-Still will profusely thank me for the funniest things, such as wiping her up after the bathroom, “Thank you so much, Mama!!  Thank you!!”  or for giving her dry cereal instead of cream of wheat. hahaha  “Oh, Mama!!  Thank you so much for pouring more milk for me!!”

Evelyn is our most outgoing child and will often hand out hugs at church (whether or not you ask for it, she will come barreling at you, expecting nothing short of you receiving it joyfully).

Although she isn’t a sit still kind of kid, Evie has been appreciating books more and more as she’s gotten a little older.  She loves when I let her pick some out to listen to. ❤

Ev is a creative little tot.  I love hearing all her ideas when she builds things with one of our favorite toys, Duplos.  They really do bring out the creativity in kids.  We are Lego lovers around here.  This is her explaining what she built face.

Evie also really enjoys drawing.  She’s been putting a little more thought into what she cranks out lately.  This was one of her finer artistic moments.  Often, her people are heads with arms, legs, and hair coming off of them, and a bunch of dots on the head to cover all eyes, ears, noses, mouths, and a few zits to spare.

With our crew, a good meal/snack is one that is eaten outside.  Whether that is watermelon slurping or a picnic, outside is always best. hahaNo crumbs on the floor, no sticky in the house, and spills are no big deal.

These three girls are so fun.  I seriously could not imagine my days spent anywhere else but with them!  ❤ ❤ ❤

Proof that they can all sometimes simultaneously get along. 🙂

We love, love, love our cuddly Lil’ Peanut!!  She is our happy spirited, fast paced lil’ zoomer, busy, sunshiny, mischievous, smiley little girl.  You’ll always be our baby. ❤ ❤ ❤

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A Zoo Birthday with a Special Cake

Just humor a sentimental Mama here for a moment.  You know my kids growing up always gets me right in the feels.  These were my “last night with my 2 year old Evie” moments.

Evie knows how to start her days RIGHT – with a nice big cup of “kef!”  You really can’t beat a good, healthy cup of keifer. 🙂

A traditional birthday walk on Daddy’s shoulders (a tradition that won’t last forever I’m afraid…).  With a stick of course….

Evelyn reusing the classic train outfit from Abby’s 3 year old party.

Little Peanut is getting so big!!  I can’t handle it!! ❤ ❤ ❤

I always let the girls pick what kind of a party they want, based mostly on their cake request.  Evie gave me quite the challenge this time around when she told me very decidedly that she’d like a chocolate zoo train cake – a blue chocolate zoo train cake that is.  I found some inspiration off of pinterest, but mostly came up with this chocolate graham cracker and frosting creation.  It was a bit more difficult to piece the engine together than I anticipated and I had to make the process take longer with chances for frosting to dry/harden, but it eventually was complete!

Yup, I’m doing all angles of the cake here.  It took me ten years to make, them five minutes to eat, and let’s just all sit and appreciate it for a minute now. haha

The good news is, it was 3 year old approved!!!

I also made some zoo animal cookies and a hummus platter lion (note to self: don’t ever buy garlic hummus.  I like garlic, but this was waaaay too much!)

The banner was sort of jungly, but jungle, zoo, eh….. it works, right?

Time to blow out those candles!!  I helped her out a little bit to avoid the cake being covered in spit. ha

Our birthday girl. ❤  We had fun celebrating with you today and being thankful for the gift of your precious life.  Thank you, Lord, for this undeserved blessing. ❤

Oh, also we took Evie to the zoo a couple days before her birthday.  We had some cool kids go with us. 🙂

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Evie’s Mama Time Take 3

It’s a Mama Time kind of day!

Peanut was excited to make cookies with BLUE M&Ms!!  I can’t remember the girls helping me make cookies since last Christmas when we made some cookie trays for our neighbors, so it’s been a while. haha  Opening the butter is always a favorite helping activity.

Butter, brown sugar, candy….. now I’m remembering why we never make cookies…..

Evie really loved picking out the blue M&Ms. haha

Wait time teaches us all kinds of difficult life lessons. ha

To help make the wait easier, we worked on some gluing with beans.  Evie loves getting to use glue and I love letting her use it when I’m not focused on a million other things (kids).  Double win.

I made a few shapes and a letter ‘E’ for Evie to put some beans on after she had done a bit of gluing.

Here’s what Evie had to say about the parts she had done herself, “I made a balloon, and a heart, and a horse, and a yittle whale.  He’s nice.  And this big whale.  He’s mean and wants to bite.  He doesn’t want to shoot his barfs all over.  His daddy told him to barf in the potty.”  Say what?? haha

Here’s mine.  I know, I know…. I truly missed my life calling as an artist.  Please hold the applause.  But I mean… if you compare it to the 2 year old’s, then I look good!  It’s all about perspective with art.

Evie Grace was thrilled we had a few minutes left for playing Pet Shop.

The sisters gave Evie’s cookies raving reviews!  Until next time, Peanut! ❤

Evie’s Mama Time Take 2

Evelyn was super excited about another “Mama Time” this afternoon!  I gave her a little post-it note list with the things we were going to do together and her giddiness could not be contained. haha (beware, low quality phone pics incoming….)

We hadn’t made our play-doh recipe in so long that Evie didn’t even know what I was talking about when I asked her if she wanted to make some.  Oops!

This actually made it more exciting for her to watch the cool transformation that happens as the ingredients heat up together.  You really should try this recipe with your kids if you never have!!

Of course, Little Peanut chose to make BLUE! play-doh.  We didn’t mix the food coloring in the best, but it actually turned out really neat that way with little dark blue speckles throughout!

We enjoyed play-doh fun for most of our time together.  We practiced letters and sounds while stamping letters….

We made pizza….

And noodles too!

We switched gears for the last few minutes and played some “Fill the cup!”  This gets a little complicated, so try to stay with me now….  You each get a cup.  You take turns rolling a die and counting the corresponding number of objects into your cup.  This keeps going until someone fills their cup and is declared the winner! haha

It didn’t hold her attention for too long, but it was a fun counting exercise for a bit at least.  Evie thought she was funny dumping my cup into hers.  Look who’s winning now! haha

I loved some extra special time with my little Peanut! ❤

 

 

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Mama Time Play Dates

It may sound funny, but although I spend every waking second with my children, I often wish I had more time with them.  Let me explain as you scratch your head…. haha  Most of my moments are very child-filled and child-centered, it’s true.  However, it’s very rare that I have focused, one on one time with them – especially the older two girls.  This is something I’ve had a strong desire to change lately.  While I do plenty of things for my children, I want them to have my TIME and know I love and care about each one individually.  I want to make time to talk to them and listen to them without a hundred little interruptions and distractions.

I was trying to figure out where I could work on this.  The babies’ morning naps are fazing out or that would have been the obvious choice.  For a while, it seemed the only choice was to somehow escape the house with just one child.  But the only feasible option that wouldn’t interrupt bedtimes was taking a kid out for supper.  This just wasn’t going to happen for us, especially not as frequently as I wanted that time with them.  We almost never eat out as is and it would be at the expense of time with Daddy, which we never like doing.  It was kind of difficult for me to find an alternative plan.  Although I love my children so much, it’s easy to selfishly crave, and feel entitled to, those less constant high needs moments like afternoon Quiet Time.

After about a week of pondering this dilemma, I finally came up with my idea.  I’ll spend one hour of one Quiet Time once a week with one of my big girls.  Did you follow that? haha  One hour is about the amount of completely uninterrupted time I can typically count on.  Plus, there are often legit things I have to get done while the kids are in Quiet Time, so this leaves me a little wiggle room.  With visits and shopping days earlier in the week, I am thinking the Mama Time days will usually be Thursday or Friday depending what else is going on.

I told the girls about this plan and they were SO excited!!!  They started planning everything we would do together right away. haha  It was really cute and definitely made me want to start asap.  Abby and I decided Evelyn could have the first turn since she is littler.

Evie was SUPER giddy when her day came up!  She grabbed my hand, chattering a mile a minute, and we headed downstairs for Petshop of course!!

We were playing a camping game and decided to make some (really rough) makeshift tents.  They were a hit for Evie!  We also made some kleen-ex casts for all the broken legs that kept happening.  It was a rough day in Petshop land!

I do like Petshop, but after a half hour or so, it was time to switch things up a bit. haha  I suggested we do some crafting with GLUE and SCISSORS and Evie was instantly sold.  She doesn’t have access to those too frequently and was pretty pumped.  She did quite a bit of gluing while I worked on a card for Daddy.  He recently found out he passed yet another actuarial exam, and we are all super duper proud of him!!!  Only one more and a few other things left!!  WOO!

We had a great time together and Evelyn was beaming about it the rest of the day.  I’m excited for another special time with my Little Peanut in a couple weeks. 🙂  See Evie’s smuggest possible expression below. ❤

Evelyn’s 2 1/2 Year Update

*Long Post Alert!!*  After the babes hit 2 years old, I only do an update every 6 months…. soooo, it got a little long.  Feel free to skim. 😉

Evie Grace is changing so much lately!  She’s losing all her babyness (I can’t say “baby fat” because she never had any. ha!  Scrawniest baby ever!) and getting so big!!  Although, of course, she’ll always be my baby. ❤

Our little peanut weighs 28 pounds and is about 35 1/2 inches tall, just shy of three feet.

Evie embraced the past fall season wholeheartedly.

Apple picking was pretty great too!

Winter, however, wasn’t her favorite.  It took a lot of convincing to get her outside in the first snowfall.  She was quite skeptical and pretty upset that the snow was falling on her.  Of course, getting pulled around in a sled (sitting in it to avoid touching the snow was her thing) by your Daddy is pretty great!  And Mama can whip a snowhorse together like no one’s business, so there’s that too…

Her “swimming suit” made it a little better and of course, hot chocolate was a major highlight.  Evelyn continues to be our ever-thirsty child.  If she isn’t guzzling her water or milk, wait a minute and she will be.  She still loves her kefir in the mornings.  You might think the world is coming to an end if you witnessed Evelyn waiting (the whole five minutes it takes) for me to mix up and hand out the kefir morning shakes.

Lil’ Peanut loves being Mama’s helper, especially in the kitchen.  She definitely makes things more exciting!

So much happens to a 2 year old vocabulary-wise between turning 2 and 2 1/2!!  I tried to write down a few favorite sayings and quotes so I wouldn’t forget them all as Evie grew up on us.  She’s so funny and makes me laugh at least once every single day.  I’ll try to put the quotes in order so the first ones are from up to a few months ago and the last ones were more recent. 🙂

“Might see pumpkins  Might see tractors!”  Well, probably not anymore, Honey.  “Ne ‘er know!!” – her little optimistic, “Ne’er know!” was after hearing me say that a few too many times in response to the girls’ constant barrage of thoughts/questions/comments.  Are we gonna see Maddie (neighborhood dog) outside??  “You never know!”  Are we gonna see this?  How about that?  Will there be worker trucks??  “You never know!”

“Where me at?  I right here!!”

“I see ducklings in the sky!” – Do you mean, geese?

“That brown dog…. it’s nah woofin’!” – It’s not woofing

“Can I have Abby’s cheese?  Her not want it.”  “Elly’s sad.  Her wants her bink.” – You have to enjoy the stage of mixing up her and she.

“Now I’m not cold, Mama.  I’m in my swimming suit!” – she still calls it this….. I can’t bear to correct it.

“You okay, Seet Cheeks?  You okay?”  – aka “Sweet Cheeks,” She’d say this to Elly whenever she was crying.

“My nuuue shoes LIGH UP!” –  Evs is always so emphatic with everything she says.  When I’m sitting, she’ll get in my face, lower her face to mine, and really spit those words out.  It’s definitely an attention getter.

“Don’t bite my baby’s head off!!” – I was playing dollies with her and apparently this was a legitimate concern.  Of course, it’s something Evie might have actually done, so that makes it a little more understandable.

“Yittle” – little…. This is one of my favorites, especially because her and Abby do this. haha

“Bumby” – Bumbo

Climbing all over the bumbo.  “Evie… don’t climb on the bumbo.  You’re too big for it now!”  In a really squeaky, helpless voice, “No, I yittle.  I yittle.  I Elly Hope.”  (Her bear started frequenting the bumbo after a new house rule got Evie officially kicked out)

“Dat brown dog!  It’s nah woofin’!” – That brown dog.  It’s not woofing.

Calling Elly, “Ella” – she came up with this on her own.  I think it was after hearing another little girl’s name was, Ella. haha

“Turn to 358!” – This is what she tells us when it’s time to sing during family worship.  It stems from our hymnal singing at church.

“Good Shepherd for my Soul!” – Sometimes we will let the girls pick which song we sing and Evie always picks, “Good Shepherd of my Soul” slightly mispronounced of course. 😉

“I am gettin’ bigger, right Mama?  I am bigger!  Right?”  Yes, honey, you are bigger!  “I can touch scissors, right Mama?”  Uh… no.  No, you can’t do that unless I help you. haha  “But I can touch spoon!  And forks!”  Yes, yes you can.

“Look at the two whips!”  – took me forever to figure out she was pointing to the “tulips.”

While riding up on Daddy’s shoulders she kindly offered, “Daddy, when you get tinier, I’ll give you a ride on my shoulders!”

“When I get tinier and I’m a baby then I can wear it.” – In reference to some outfit Elly had on that she was jealous of.  I’ve tried to explain the whole, you’re not getting any tinier concept, but it still hasn’t quite clicked.

“When I get bigger I can touch knife-es and when I get bigger I can make kef!” – Knives and “kef” (kefir) are apparently where the real fun is at.

“I didn’t cumble today, Mama!” – aka tumble, my poor tots are always tumbling left and right and they have the scrapes to prove it!

“Why do you have a scarf, Daddy?!”

“Mama, why’d you make me a buns in my hair??  You should have made me a piggie!!” – she thought I put a butt in her hair… I’d be a little offended too.

Speaking of hair…. Evelyn finally grew enough hair that she could wear a ponytail (or “buns”)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I thought the day would never come.  It lasts longer if I wet it first, but still!!  On a bummer note, she looked waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too old with all her hair back!!

Ev still really likes seeing “diggers” and “big trucks” whenever possible.  Sometimes I’ll point one out and say, “Do you want to ride in that big truck?”  She’s usually pretty quick to respond, “NO!  I wanna DRIVE it!  And I will drive it wild and crazy!!  Heh heh heh!!”  She has the troublesome, super smug, mischievous, “heh, heh, heh!” laugh down pat.

Little One’s favorite color has been blue for quite a while now.  She was super excited when her aunt, Jill, found a blue coat for her!  (Sidenote: the girls are really into riding their bikes around with a bucket on their handlebars for treasure filling)

Evie Grace has definitely made leaps and bounds with her strider lately and races around balancing like a pro.  We thought she was ready to go ahead and ride it on our mile walk a couple days ago and she was SO thrilled!!!  She was completely giddy the whole time.  It’s been her dream (and constant question) for the last couple months.  She did really well and it was fun to get to walk at a faster pace than when she walks.

One of her favorite tricks, “Look, Daddy!  Look, Mama!  I’m balancing!!”

This is what we call, “The Evie Scowl.”  Woe to the one on whom it falls!  In her defense, she didn’t want to “smile for the picture” right after waking up from nap. ha!!

My girls got to have some long awaited ice cream on Dairy Queen’s free cone day.  They were living it up!

Little Lambykins! ❤

Selfies with Mama because Evie likes to sometimes say, “Take a picture with me!”

My baby has been demonstrating that my peaceful quiet time was coming to a close for a while now, but I finally am (very sadly) letting it happen.  That’s right.  Evie stopped her afternoon nap (the only REAL relaxing/quiet/peaceful/take ten breaths time of the day for me haha) about 2 weeks ago.  It’s over, folks.  We’re currently working to implement rules such as “no talking to Mama during quiet time,” “stay in your designated area,” and “use your quiet voice when it’s necessary to inform me that you need to go poop.”  Surprisingly, she is doing a little better each day.  Evie definitely has a shorter attention span than Abby, but I think this time is actually helping her expand that.  She was really into wrapping her blanket around her head to fall asleep prior to naps being cut.

Still breathing in there??  Yup.  All good.

Before I get too carried away lamenting my once peaceful hour of the afternoon….. there is a positive!  Evie now falls asleep much faster at bedtime, resulting in extended “date night” time with Cabz (we call every night “date night” once the kids are asleep haha).  I’m extra happy that I snagged a few too many pictures of napping Evs now.  She thought she was sill tiny enough to take her naps in the boppy pillow. haha

I love when she sleeps like this.  SO TINY!

Not many can pull off lookin’ fiiiiine even while asleep!

Ev always wins for best bed head EVER.  See what I mean??

The big girls had been talking and dreaming about having a “sleepover” for days.  It finally happened and the excitement levels were sky high!  Unfortunately, a few minutes later Abby started rethinking it….. I heard her in there, “Evie, quit poking my ears. Quit kicking me. No thank you!! No thank you! Evie what are you doing with my blanket?”  A bit later, Evie called out that she wanted back in her oooown bed!  Upon her removal Abby admitted, “I want Evie in her bed cuz she was kinda hurting me.”  Best sleepover ever.  It lasted about 15 minutes. haha!!

Evie Grace enjoys taking care of her baby dolls.  She wishes she could dress them, but so far she only undresses them and then oh-so-desperately needs someone else to redress them.  (That hair sprout though…)

I’ll admit, sometimes I pick on my Lil’ Peanut just a bit….  She doesn’t take it too personally.

Back in the nap time days, “Baby Belle” would often have to “nurse” for quite a while beforehand.

I have no idea why, but for whatever reason I have gotten mastitis an average of every other month while nursing Elly.  Whenever it strikes, I use the pump to try and work through it as fast as possible.  Evelyn was all curious, wondering if she could have that milk in the cup and so finally I let her once.  She DOWNED it.  Ever since, there is always at least ONE giddy person when I get mastitis….  She helps me get it all put together, antsy for her cup of milk.  Weird or not weird??  I personally think it’s a little weird, but welcome to real life in our household.

Evs is still obsessed with watching the garbage and recycling trucks go by.  This is where I am sure to find her if we’re not actually out on the driveway.

Evie’s eyes are so fun, because they are the same dark, dark brown as Caleb’s!  I always thought his eyes were the best and hoped at least one of our kids would get them from him.  She totally did!! (along with a ton of other features, head profile/forehead, movement mannerisms, and SO many of her facial expressions look almost identical to his little kid pictures.  SO fun!)  Her nose is certainly not his (Abby got that), but she definitely fulfills my dream to see a little girl version of my handsome guy. 🙂

We found out this past winter that we have an up and coming professional golfer on our hands.  The picture with her holding the golf club up in the air for me to see?  Ya, I was terrified too!

Evelyn and her sticks.  The girls often want to pick up “treasures” on our walks.  I usually limit their pick-ups to one item unless we’re on a park trail or something and moving slower.  Otherwise, we literally never get going as they stop and pick up everything they see. haha  Abby usually will choose a flower – sometimes a walnut, acorn, or pine cone.  Evelyn?  She always chooses a stick.  Our little wild girl!

This kid has always been our wild girl.  Some things never change….

Big Sister, Abby, is often overwhelmed by Evie and her antics.  Evie can’t quite keep up with Abby’s mouth, but Abby can’t keep up at all with Evie’s wild behavior. ha!

Baby Girl has always been our hands on, super squirmy, cuddle bug.

Evie enjoying the pumpkin patch last fall.  She has always known how to really live it up with whatever we’re doing!  The hard part for her is transitioning when something is over or we say it’s time to leave.  She always listens, but we definitely go through phases that require consequences.

Evie’s “awkward, how do I pose for a picture??” face, followed by her, “haha!! That was foolish!” face.

Evelyn’s dream: sit in the big car at the mall.  She has no idea that it can move if you put money in it.  I think she’d scream for joy if we ever went all out and did that.

Her, “I’m not sure about this person” face.

These next pictures demonstrate what we know as the “classic Evie.”  This enthusiastically happy, open mouthed grin has been her go-to expression ever since she first learned how to smile as a baby.  I will never get tired of seeing this cute face!!  The baby pic is from when she was around 11 months old I believe.  If you know our Lil’ Peanut, you’ve seen this face! ❤

While my girls enjoy going out and about doing things, they are also quite content with more simple home pleasures.  Here is pictured a rare walk where Daddy kept an eye on both napping babies and Evie actually got to RIDE something instead of walk!!

Enjoying our new keyboard!  Music is such a wonderful gift from the Lord!

Popcorn night will always be the best ever.

Having fun in our yard is always a favorite pastime!! ❤

Water and Evelyn are bffs.  I could give this kid a drop of water and she would somehow manage to sop her entire outfit.  Helping wash the van was mostly squeezing water all over and splashing in the bucket, but she sure enjoyed it! haha

When your good hair day goes bad….

We are ever amazed at how frequently the younger sister beats up on the older one….  One of our most hilarious stories to date: We were driving somewhere and Abby and Evie were going round and round in the back seat.  We were talking and didn’t really notice for a while.  Finally, we realized there was an issue in the back and asked, “Girls, what is going on back there??”  Abby sadly says, “Well, Evie says she is going to do mean sings (things) to me in the morning!!”  “Uh…. what mean things?”  “Well…. I don’t remember, but she probably knows!”  I turn to look at Evie and she’s sitting in her seat SMUG as all get out.  Overall, they have a ton of fun together, but there are always those moments….

It’s always a fun day when you get to twin with a sister!!  Elly is never as excited about it as the older two.

Although Evie has never had quite as much patience for books as Abigail, her enjoyment of reading has been increasing over time.  She will actually sit and “read” books to herself fairly often now and is always excited when I have time to read a book of choice to each girl! (This pic is a little snippet dedicated to my most loyal reader – you may be the only one who even makes it this far in this way too lengthy post!!)

Books are especially sure to interest Evelyn when they are about tractors, trucks, or diggers!!

Little Miss can have an attitude when she so desires.  “I don’t wan to!” smile for the picture.

Uh-oh.  This is what happens when I turn away for literally 2 minutes when Evie is using window markers.  Hmm… they can color on windows…. how about my hands??  *sigh*

Boots + Evie Grace = a perfect look!

This set of pictures is “Just Evie.”  She was carrying on her little conversations with me as I snapped these nonchalantly.  I love capturing the kids in their element, just doing what they do! ❤

This is what Evie looks like after eating spaghetti and getting washed up at the sink.  Still sort of grubby, and wet all over. haha

Here is what Evelyn picks out to wear on a “you choose” day.  She’s stylin’ and she knows it!!  Monster truck shirt, striped leggings, and her Olaf the Snowman tall socks (on the outside of the leggings obviously, so you can see them!!).

I find this picture so hilarious.  She is standing SO straight and holding her bear just so and it just makes me laugh.  This is one of those poses I think I can picture Caleb doing as a 2 year old. haha

Sometimes I catch myself wishing they’d grow up just a little more slowly….

Although Evie doesn’t talk at quite the level of speed Abby did at this age, she is still quite a little chatterbox.  When out walking, I often have to hush one child so I can hear the other child and then listen to the other one, etc. etc. etc. the entire walk.  I never want for conversation.  Marrying Cabz, I thought for sure we’d have a super quiet kid, but…. that has yet to happen!  Unless Elly is going to be Miss Silent.  I guess we don’t know for sure with her just yet.

We are so incredibly blessed with these babies of ours!  Getting to watch them grow, learn, and change day by day and getting to be their parents has taught us SO much.  God has sure used our children to show us our great need for Him, among other things!  We love you each!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

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