Evelyn’s 3 1/2 Year Old Update

Our little Peanut is growing like a weed!  Or… a least, she wishes she was.  For whatever reason, this girl is obsessed with getting taller and bigger.  Why do people prone to shortness always want to be so tall??  I mean, I hate to break it to Evie, but she’s always been a bit shrimpy and just based on growth numbers, I don’t think she’s ever going to achieve her dream of being as “tall as Abby!”  She is 39 inches tall and weighs 33 lb 2 oz.

This next picture was after she had announced, “I’m gettin’ bigger and taller!  I’m gonna be a momma soon!”

One of her favorite activities is to admire her very tall shadow over breakfast.  “My shadow is taller than YOU, Mama!  Isn’t it??”  Or to hold tall sticks up in an attempt to be “taller” than me.

She was determined to build a tower as tall as her the other day.  Obviously, it was HUGE because she is super tall, guys!!

Evelyn has always been our expressive, big emotions kid.  She is either SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HAPPY or EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE!!  There really isn’t much in between.  When everything is terrible, we’re all just like why.  Please, don’t give us another child with her personality.  But, when she’s happy, she’s SO happy it’s contagious and she laughs like crazy when she even thinks you’re possibly thinking about tickling her and it’s never a challenge to get her to smile for a picture and her laugh is ridiculously happy and genuine, and then we wish all our kids were like her. ha  We love our Evie Grace.  I still get a kick out of her mouth wide open grin.  Also, check out her front two teeth gap.  I don’t know why, but I love it.  Cabz is always worried it means she’ll need braces, but I think it’s adorable. ❤

Speaking of big emotions….  these kids never watch movies, or even shows for that matter.  We had a small kick where we were letting them watch a Max & Ruby or something similar on Friday nights for 15 minutes, but that faded long ago.  A few months ago, I thought, hey!  It’s been forever.  Why don’t we try a movie with the kids?  I pulled out our old classic, Ice Age and we settled in with some popcorn.  I had gone over the plot with the kids beforehand, because they don’t handle suspense well WHATsoever.  I explained to them that the baby was NOT going to die.  The tiger was NOT going to eat it.  Guess how many times I had to reassure them of these same truths throughout the movie?  Like fifty million.  And the tears.  Oh my word.  Every time the tiger was sneaky etc., BAHHHHHhhhhhh!!!!  Waterworks.  “IS the tiger gonna get him??  Is he gonna die??  Will they get the baby back to his daddy??”  It took us two nights to get through this movie and I’m officially NOT pulling it off the shelf again until multiple years have gone by. hahaha

Peanut has always been a lover.  She never hesitates to get a hug when needed and has lately been into giving smooches.  Of course, “the baby in your womb!” never gets left out from that.  Baby (my belly) gets a hug and a kiss every night before bed among other times.

Every good day starts with a big glass of keifer as far as Evie is concerned.  She always wants a LOT.

Although Evie Grace didn’t used to be quite the gamer Big Sis always was, she has been a lot more into games lately.  Some of her favorites are Guess Who, Kingdomino, Kingdom Builders, “The Fish Game,” (Hey, that’s my Fish!) and “The Farming Game” (Agricola).

The kids all love living out in the country.  The pets and pet potential is one of their favorite things about it.  So far we have accumulated 6 chickens and a barn cat that recently had 4 kittens.  As Evie will tell you LOUD AND PROUD, “But the calico one DIED!  But we still have THREE!!”  Although her naming ability is usually sub par, I was impressed when she decided on Sunshine “Sunny” for our cat.  I’m not really a cat person, but Sunny is about as nice as they get.  She’s very friendly and sociable, loves being around the kids, tolerates the younger ones’ abuse, and loves to be petted.  She’s not one of those aloof crab cats or one of those that you’re petting and then they bite you or petting and then they scratch you.  I am really not a fan of cats like that.  She’s also not TOO annoying, where she’s always in your face.  She’s the perfect cat as far as they go.

The kids (and I) are really excited to get a dog asap, but we kind of need a fence first.  Evie enjoyed the puppies our friends from church had a while back.

She also loves petting goats and getting pony rides on Emmy and Paps’s farm!

We have had an exceptionally slow spring, so I don’t have a lot of warm, springy, outside pics of Evie this time around, but she loves being outside and had fun in the snow whenever I was ambitious enough to bundle everyone up.

Evie’s favorite snow fun was when I would make them snow babies.  She named hers Baby Evie of course because what else would you name an adorable baby?!

Late last fall, Evie was busy doing some yard clean up at our tiny house in town.  She got a little hung up in her big bundly snow pants though and was all flopped over when I looked out. haha

Like any good Iowa child, Evie enjoyed finding leftover field corn and soybeans.

Ev is still the wild child in our family.  She loves careening pell-mell all over on her bike and is always trying to hock Abby’s bike (that’s waaaay too big for her) and generally ends up splatting somewhere because she can’t reach the ground to stop appropriately.

She’s always the kid who is doing something a little too crazy at the park…. (at least in this instance she had a helmet from riding her bike there ha!)

She’s the one with the chainsaw…. ha  This is so typical of her and Abby.  Abby is interested in the artsy thing and Evie’s ready to saw something to pieces.

Tractor and combine time is always greatly enjoyed and talked about for weeks.

Evie Grace loves to be a helper, but she is often more enthusiastic to start a task than she is to follow through and finish one.  She is always excited to help me with cooking, but it has to be the right job as she is very hands on and can scarcely be contained in the height of excitement.  We had never made pigs in a blanket, but decided to splurge one night.  The girls thought it was great helping roll them up. haha

Ev loves to help with Baby Girl too.  She is always begging to hold her (although it only lasts about a minute before she’s ready to give her back) and loves entertaining her.  Although she has been a big sister for a long time, it’s kind of cute seeing her in the big sister role with a younger one.  Evie was so young herself when Obie and Elly came along that she wasn’t quite as nurturing at that point.

She was cute helping with little cousin, Belle, when she came over too. haha  It’s funny when kids are Belle and Elly’s ages how they connect better with older kids than with their peers.

The other day Evie was laying on the play mat with Babykins and goes, “Mama!  Take a picture and send it to Google!”  I have no idea where that even came from.  I am personally way too technologically impaired to ever attempt sending something to Google….. hahaha  This girl doesn’t lack self-confidence.  That’s for sure.

Just a normal day at our house.  Apples all ’round!

Alright, my personal favorite time.  Quotes from Evie.  I’m sure there were a million more, but these are the ones I managed to scrap together and write down semi in the moment so as not to forget. ha  Enjoy!

Staring out at the (let’s be honest here…. ) tiresome snow, “I wonder when the snow will melk.”

“Baf time!” (bath)

“Can I go wif you?” (with – gotta love those cute lispy pronunciations. ❤ )

She was in a stage for a while where she was always calling Elly our nickname for her, “Jelly Bean!”  It was the cutest.

“I don’t want to uh-cuz I’m doing this.” (because)

During our evening Bible time, Caleb was reviewing the story of Adam and Even from the previous night – What did God do when He saw that Adam was all alone?  Evie: “He said, go to your friends!”

Bible time again, Caleb was reading about Rachel and how she died while giving birth to Benjamin, so they buried her.  Evie quickly pipes up, “What did they do with the meat?!”  Um…. we don’t eat humans or typically refer to them as ‘meat,’ babe….

The other day Evie and Abby came running out of a back room excitedly.  “Mama!  We thought of a new name for the baby in your womb!!  Tubellip!  Or Tubella!  *pause* Is that a girl’s name?  Or Belly or Beany or Peanut Butter or Carmel or Chocolate!”  Me, “Wow… ya…. you guys have lots of ideas!”  Abby, “Ya, only for girls though….”

“I was so embarrassed of Sunny when she had her kittens!”  *long pause, followed by trying again*  “I was so proud of Sunny when she had her kittens!”  (She was trying to say she was worried about her, since she had them when we were camping.

There was a month or two where we thought Evie had taken over the most intense chatterbox in the home.  Abby has since reclaimed her rightful title, but Evie definitely can hold her own in the talking department.  My brain feels like it’s exploding most of the day as I am bombarded with conversation nonstop, generally from more than one at a time.  I love Evie’s “Uh-huh!  That is really true!” face when she’s telling me something.

A real life Sunday morning breakfast shot taken by Cabz.  Hair undone, bibs all ’round, eating oatmeal on the kitchen floor.  This is generally where the kids eat.  Saves on the table mess at least!

Lately, Evie is extremely offended and upset when she is not invited to participate in a photo or is *gasp!!* asked to step out of a photo.  She is always trying to get in on photos not intended for her as well and often comes complete with a prop of some sort.  Oh, Evelyn Grace….

She’s still my little lover of sticks!  It’s rare that I look out the window and Evie isn’t carrying some sort of giant stick, waving it around dangerously.  Why.

Our little goofy babe.  Evie really is the queen of pokiness.  She is always the last one to get ready to leave/go to bed/go outside/etc., no matter how hard I try to get her moving.  I’ll send her to get her shoes on – she comes back wearing my shoes and giggling.  I send her to get undressed – she starts dressing a doll and forgets.  I tell her to get her jacket on – she has to pee!!  And then forgets.  I try to get her moving – she has a million questions and can’t focus.  She is actually ridiculous. haha  It’s probably good for me and my lack of patience, but OH MY WORD.  This girl is never in a hurry and is SO easily distracted and off task! haha  Good thing she’s cute as a button. ❤

Playing “Mama and Baby Diggers.”  This is how my girls play with Obie’s digger toys….. yup.

The two big girls really do have a lot of fun together these days.  There is still a decent amount of fighting, but overall they work pretty well together.  It helps that although Abby’s tendency is to boss and dictate, Evie will not have it and pushes her own opinions through defiantly most of the time.

I love when all the girlies are playing kindly together downstairs (rare).  This was one of those few times.  They all came up dressed like this. hahaha

Eliana used to love giving her sisters their wake up call when she slept in our room.  They’ve all been sharing a room since we moved (ahhhhhhhhhhhhh) so not so much anymore.

Peanut may have upgraded from the floor to a bunk bed, but she still has some weird sleeping positions.  This was a little rare actually.  Normally she is super bundled (to the point of sweating up a storm) in her blankets.

Evie’s naps have been all over the place for the last half year or so.  She went back and forth with napping, no napping, etc.  For the past couple months, we have been doing no naps unless she noticeably needs one (super cranky all morning haha) or church days when she stays up later.  So, on Wednesdays and Sundays she takes a nap.  This system has been working pretty well actually.  She has reached the point where she can make it to bed time without hitting a meltdown stage even without a nap, which is great news. haha  On nap days, she definitely has more pep, but I like skipping naps overall so she crashes shortly after going to bed.  It makes bedtime dreamy to have really tired kids, just sayin’.  She loves to half suffocate herself on nap days.  I always go in and remove things off her head after she falls asleep, because it worries me.  She’s ridiculous!  Usually, her head is completely buried or wrapped inside her blanket.  How is that even comfortable?!

Evie will often announce, “I’m NOT going to fall asleep at all!!” as she marches off to her naps.  This was one of those times…..

Just making Evie try on my old glasses, because I can.  Kids in glasses are so cute!  It can’t just be me….

Little Miss Cheeser.  She is so easy to pull a smile out of!

Sidewalk chalk is always a better idea before it happens.  They never play with it for more than a minute or two and yet somehow manage to get completely coated in chalk dust.  Really now.

Peekin’ from the hide-out under their bunk bed.

Going through their candy loot they picked up on our walk the day afternoon halloween…..  so much for skipping that party.

Evelyn knows her letters and sounds for the most part (there’s a couple she still mixes up occasionally) and can count at least to 12.  She gets excited about school, although her momentum fades a few minutes in.  She can be very difficult to keep on task. haha  We really don’t do too much school at this point with her, but she is making slow progress.  She loves listening to books now, which is a plus. 🙂

We love our little color blue loving Peanut!  She keeps every day exciting and has the most contagious smile ever.  She’s my cuddle bug and I love her big snuggles!  She’s a very sweet big sister and loves her family so much.  I love when she rides around on her bike singing, “Behold our God!!  Nothing can compare!  Come let us adore Him!” at the very top of her lungs.  So thankful to the Lord for this precious daughter in our family. ❤


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.


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!

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. ❤ ❤ ❤





















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. 🙂


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! ❤




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. ❤