Quiet Times

Naps are sporadic. Few and far between. Non existent for this mama.

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Now that my kids are older and it feels like they’re even closer than the 21 months that seperate them, when one “outgrows” naptime, the other decides to have them at random times, and mostly in the car. Bo’s not quite old enough  to understand “rest time” however, so sometimes, I fill up my coffee mug and soldier on with some more activities:).

Are you a person who can nap anywhere anytime?

What is your go-to activity for when you feel the crazy coming on with your kids?

 

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Summer Shenanigans

There is never a better day than a day at the zoo, in my kids’ minds! But if you ask me, it’s the best way to get my steps in :).

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We got to go with some friends recently. It’s so fun knowing someone when you’re young and fresh before babies, and then get to see each other have babies at the same time you are!

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This ginger of mine is just barely letting me get through the day with my head on straight. We say he’s the sour punch kid….. usually being sour but then his sweetness just takes your breath away!

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Dad gets home early now on Fridays and we are loooooooving it!

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Had some fun with water photos the other day! They just had fun with water. They seriously are outside most of the day if we have no plans. It’s messy and wonderful.

What are your summer plans?

What is the best backyard “kid item” you’ve found?

 

 

Weeks 2-4 and a Chat on Thankfulness

I feel like so much has been happening lately, but in the form of family discussions, decisions, and prayer. Asking God about doors that are opening (and not opening), praying about discipline to save for our next house (the sooner the better!), not knowing where we’ll be living next year, praying for our roots to just get deeper where we are- find community, build our “tribe”, get involved in the life around us. All this while trying to plan our daily activities, cleaning our house (this just never ever ends, not even for half a minute), love on my babies, and thinking of ways to be a better wife and friend. My mind can literally spin. I almost got an ulcer thinking for an ENTIRE MORNING about what to do with my doggone hair (this growing-out phase is atrocious).

However, I was reminded of a sweet friend back home who told our bible study girls about thanking God for arms to fold her laundry. Yes, we laughed and I still laugh but OH, THE TRUTH IN THIS. So I took her example seriously today. As I was cleaning bathrooms, I caught myself getting depressed that I can’t make this house my home because it’s a rental and feeling more sad about all the things I can’t change and then- I remembered the thankfulness. I started to say “God, thank you for…. (it took a minute) giving us a house to clean”. There it was. And then it just kept on going… “Thank you for the four hands you gave me that are so healthy and able to make the mess they make out of curiosity and play” “Thank you for this home to raise my babies in for this moment”….

It got easier. And it gave me joy. Go figure, I know. But try it the next time you feel the crummy-ness of your day’s tasks creep up on you.

And now, for the project I gave myself this year, which I apparently am “failing at” technically. But really, I’m just proud of myself for continuing to take pictures, even if it’s not every single day. I am getting better, even if I have no editing programs! So just keep in mind, they’re just raw from my camera. I know they could totes be better. 😉

 

Our “camping” = setting up the tent in the backyard for the afternoon. They loved it.

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Yes, I snuck one in that Jason took of Andie and me :). Sometimes you just gotta get in the action!

I’m thankful for Oklahoma skies, nice weather in the dead of winter, a back yard to play in, and the way the sun shines through our back windows! Tell me what “silly” things you’re thankful for!

Welcome, Baby Merrick!

My FOURTH nephew was born last week and I am so thankful I’m living here and healthy enough to visit and snag some photos! He is the teeniest, most wonderful baby! Cassie looked victorious and strong as ever. This miracle is never lost on me.

Although they have a way of being honest and transparent about the hardships of parenthood, they are naturals at loving those boys. Knox sure knows it.

“When I hold you in my arms, love, something changes. It’s the strangest feeling, the things that used to matter, they don’t matter to me” -JJ Heller

 

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“I could never count all the ways that you change me, Baby. Everyday the sky is a deeper shade of blue, when I’m with you” 
-JJ Heller “When I’m With You”

Andie Turned 3!

The weekend started with some aunt love in the snow with no shortage of polka dots.

She’s still not sure what she thinks of the snow, even though she says she wants to make snow angels a thousand times a day.

We had her party at lo and behold, the Grand Chuck E. Cheese’s! (Never on a Saturday at 3 ever ever again). Andie had an absolute blast and asks to have that party again every day.

(Note: I love love love how Barrett held on to her little sleeve on their ride)

We had a blast the rest of the weekend enjoying all the new games and toys! Not to mention endless supply of chocolate milks (her favorite) and pancakes for breakfast. Love celebrating my baby but seeing that her “Baby-ness” is seriously behind us brings the tears a bit. She says the best things right now, though, and I wouldn’t trade this phase of our lives for anything. My recent favorite:

“My shirt didn’t work. Naked works” and walks into the room butt naked.

I’m so grateful to have Anderson Nicole in my life!

Project 365- Week 1

This year, I decided to learn more about photography. “Momtography”…. I know. I feel like every other mom who has a DSLR and loves her kids 🙂 BUT whatever. We all have our own creative eye and I am the only one who can capture my journey as I see it. So if you love seeing A and B, this blog is for you! 🙂

And honestly, I’ve already forgotten which one was which day, but whatevs. Here’s my last seven:

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This week, we’ve enjoyed tons of outside time. Daddy got some extra time home because of the holidays which means lots of games! Mostly ending in tickling 🙂 Andie enjoyed a happy birthday video from her Amma and Ampa which she watched approximately a million times. She has taken a special interest in my old Nikon so if you want your picture taken by a toddler, she’s your girl!

We are ready to celebrate sister turning of 3 this weekend! Hope you enjoy the rest this week!

Taylor Christmas

Who has time to complain about the snow storm?! We have more family to love on! We figured out there has been a baby born every year since 2010 (minus 2011)! This means that our Christmas has become a little cray, trying to figure out schedules and attitudes and snack times while opening presents and remembering to share and give and love and trying our best to have a GRATEFUL HEART FOR DEAR JESUS (and literally). These moments couldn’t have been more precious and are definitely irreplaceable.

It’s so amazing to see the personalities blossom each year. Someone shows signs of leadership, another is a peacemaker, a comedian, a boundary pusher, a sugar lover, a snuggler.  It was a beautiful icy day with lots of baby love and cousins becoming even better friends!

Peace on earth, friends.

Grey and his girls! It’s their thing.

Is there anything better than a ginger baby looking at you this way?!

Thankful for this growing family who are such good supporters and encouragers of each other!

Anderson Christmas

Every Christmas has been different for the past few years, but they keep getting better! This year, we got to host it at our new place in Oklahoma. One of the reasons this year was so much fun is because the kids are finally old enough to enjoy it! Jason and I were like elves on Christmas Eve setting up the kids’ train table and rearranging the furniture to fit it in ;). Totally paid off though because they spend SO MUCH TIME AT IT. IMG_0878

It’s always a blast to see my parents and brother! Although I should probably not admit that latter part because I’m pretty sure he thinks we’re all blessed by his radiating glory. Starred Photos6

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How crazy warm was this Christmas, too?! We loved not having to bundle up and getting to play around outside! I’ll admit- not super excited about the next couple months freezing us in, but I guess that’s what all these new toys are for, right?! 🙂

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Someone got surprised with his first NBA tickets which were enjoyed a couple hours later! #thunder

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Sometimes a little family competition is healthy. This year it was a deadbug for time, or until someone lets one out. Keepin’ it classy.

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Now time for cleaning and figuring out how I ate so many cinnamon rolls!
Merry Christmas!

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Friends are Gold

When you find good friends, you hold on to them! These people are pretty special to us and I could not be more obsessed. First of all, this girl bakes better than anyone I know. She gave me over half a strawberry cake she made JUST FOR FUN. YOU GUYS.

That is clearly how to win me over. 😉

Brent has entertained us since the day we met him, and now that he’s “Officer Brown”, even moreso. Watching our kids grow up together has been an incredible part of this story that I am so grateful for. So here’s some pics we took.
Y’all… kids are fast. (And note: this mama’s camera doesn’t have automatic focus… so bear with me).

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Allie: “Barrett, this is Bo!”
Barr: “Oh, I have a bow!”
Country people, y’all. Love ’em.

The Park

Can’t beat free activities! Except when it’s a thousand degrees outside, this particular one lasts a literal hot minute. Still, got some shots of my babes!

Andie currently absolutely hates hot weather. And the sun. And hot weather.
So we’re putting her in soccer. 🙂

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If I had a laptop and an editing program :), I would probably change the contrast of this one, but I still love my rosy cheeked boy.

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Love the sun flare on this one!

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