Friday, January 29, 2016

a gooooooooooooood Sunday

We've been having stellar Sundays. Seriously, 9 am is my jam and my life has been changed a million fold for the better. 

We woke up to cute happy babies.
 When you ask "Where's your tongue, they stick it out a wiggle for ya!"
 And then there's our cute Quinny, heart throb right there.
 Max loves these popsicle puzzles I made him. It's a good morning activity he does sitting on the table with the chairs all on their backs so the babies can't ruin his puzzles, ha, it keeps the peace.
 New PJ's, more snot, no surprise, but I have been using essential oils a lot more lately and I swear it's getting them better quicker! Definite win!
 So sad.
 And then Sunday night we made some delicious cookies! It's been awhile since I made the good old trusty tollhouse ones, not sure why I always try new things bc these are freaking delicious. (Use the yellow crisco, and up the flour up to about 2 1/2 cups instead of 2 1/4!) Max thoroughly enjoyed our cookie making. He's always tigger/lick happy amidst cookie making.

 The babies quickly turned to crying when I couldn't pick them up.

 Cookie dough stealing.

 Do you see how little our kitchen is? You are literally looking at the whole kitchen right now, I'm backed against the wall a ton. How I crave a bigger kitchen!
 And then it's off to bed!

Yes it was truly a Sabbath to delight in with my family.

Let me tell you, those cookies were super yummy. Super yummy, go forth and make dear friends.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Snow day!

We finally got some decent snow the past couple days!!!!!!!!!! Max is a freaking rockstar out there. I love to play with him oh so much outside, it's like his whole world is happy once again.
We got a TON of snow in about an hour, it was so fun to go out into that snow storm with the kids (there was A LOT of crying from the babies before we finally got out there for so many reasons but once they were on the sled they were finally happy!)
 Bryson kills me. I love him so much.
 I can't really remember if Quinny ever cracked a smile those 20 minutes outside, I mean he probably did but just LOOK at that face!
 They were happy when our outside excursion ended.
 20 min of tears to begin the adventure. 10 minutes of outside fun, 5 minutes of tears outside, and 20 more minutes of tears inside of getting clothes off, i'm hungry, my face is cold, clean up the clothes inside. Sigh, I love winter, I love winter, I love winter, I love winter. (I actually truly do LOVE winter when there's snow outside, it gives us a fun reason to GO outside in the cold!!!)
 In the afternoon we brought the snow inside for the kids which they always love so much!
 The babies couldn't stop eating it!
 Max built snow castles

The end.

I'd be thoroughly happy with more snow sent our way!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Surviving winter

Hey there, winter is still killing my soul over here.

I don't think I got out of the house once yesterday. I'd reckon that's pretty unhealthy with how little our home is and how many children I have constantly at my feet.

yesterday my throat was shot for something and I could seriously only whisper all day long to talk to Max and the babies. At one point in the day Max was downstairs yelling "mommy!" and I couldn't yell back to answer him so he just kept yelling and yelling and yelling my name while i finished my task upstairs. Soon enough the babies caught on and were on the stairs both yelling "mama! momeeeeeieee!" It was quite funny, luckily.

I was so patient at first but then my patience went more down and downhill as the evening dragged on.

I definitely had some repenting to do that night. A little before we put the kids to bed I thought to myself "oh man, this is one of those evenings that I would look back on and not be proud of myself, tomorrow I will do better."  I'm so grateful for the power of repentance in my life. All too often I take it for granted and go about my merry day but without it, I would be lost. For me repentance is so often used in those small imperfections of life  and I am not going to let them hold me back. Grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ!

Casey and I tried ending the night on a happy note with our kids and inflated our little bounce house in the basement. Sadly it leaks lots of air so we got to fix that pronto, but back to the bounce house. Max was in heaven, no surprise. Bryson liked it quite a bit even with all the accidental abusings Max gave him, and then Quinn just did not like it at all. It was fun for the first little while and then once babies wouldn't stop crying because they were getting hurt too much and Max just wouldn't listen to us anymore. Oh the glamorous life I live.

BUT today, the bounce house was still out. So the kids and I blew it up, Max burned off a little energy for 10 minutes, it was great.

So, here's to surviving winter.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

pooping stories and other happy moments of motherhood

Here's what I happened to see my hooligans doing after they were silent up there for 15 minutes, whatever, Until someone cries then I will worry about it.

I need to figure out a new niche for blogging for me. I used to just LOVE blogging and I couldn't wait until I could sit down and post these cute pictures I took of Max and the sweet stories or feelings of that day or a cute little complaint about motherhood. Fast forward to having twins and I am so exhausted when kids are sleeping, Max has most probably done lots awful stuff that day and I don't take like any pictures with my big girl camera almost ever because I'm worn out from fall's family photo season and it's so much easier to take crappy pictures on my iPhone of the kids. But THEN i have to get the pictures onto my computer, shoot me now! It takes forever.

BUT I love blogging, I really do. It can be so totally therapeutic (on awful terrible no good days, let's be real) but I find myself really living in the present, seeing the joy and capturing the small sweet moments of everyday with my little stay at home army! So we need to find a balance.

Let's just forever and always assume in EVERY post I ever post the beginning true words "I'm so tired and exhausted" I will then delete those and save you the time of reading that, but know they are there. ha.

Our hands are getting REALLY full with these kids, 97 pounds right here!

If something really awesomely awful happened I will share though, because later it's funny.

Like that one time last week when Max wouldn't poop on the potty (HE'S TOTALLY POTTY TRAINED PEOPLE! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!) and I was scrubbing poop out of his underwear (luckily that only happened once for us, wee!) and locked the door because I didn't want the kids in the shoebox size bathroom with me getting into things while my hands were occupied, Max was crying, whining at the door. Oh well I thought. 

Oh well was wrong.

I came out to 3 more big logs of poop on the floor in my room (thus Maxson's crying and whining because he was scared to poop more in no underwear, diaper, or potty, poor kid and was probably scared and embarrassed on what he was doing) and then cute little Quinn squatting right next to the poop touching it seeing what this strange object was.

Did I paint a good picture for ya?

It was funny in the moment actually, and I'm really glad I laughed through it.

So yes, those kind of moment I will share with you.

But the ones where Quinn and Bry had the worst diaper rashes the past 2 weeks we were struggling with and I finally had to let Quinn go naked for a long time to dry it out because he was constantly having runny poop every 10 minutes so I cleaned mushy poop off my floors about 6 times that day. Yeah I will spare you those ones. Because that's just the misery of motherhood sometimes and you gotta just suck it up.

I'm already SO done with winter. It really hasn't even been super long yet since it didn't start until mid December but I can't go anywhere with my kids during the day when it's cold out. We can go to the church and they can run wild. Beyond that, there is literally no way I can handle my kids out in public alone. It's rough.

Winter is killing my soul nice and slowly, per usual.

The babies are the best sleepers, I thank my lucky stars we see trained them so early (because we were so exhausted from our kids we had no energy but to let themselves cry for a few minutes before they would go to sleep, best thing I ever did).

This morning we woke up at 5:30 to the lights on downstairs, Max turned the TV on himself, found a cartoon channel, got a few yogurts from the fridge and went to town.
Sign I love him and struggle with him, ha.

I thought I was only going to share positive things on here unless it was super bad that it's just so funny. As you can see that didn't happen, Oh well, I'm actually very happy in my insanely chaotic, messy, crazy life.

There's little bits of bright happiness all day long, like when Bryson can't stop saying "momeeee and daddy!" all day long, or when Quinn won't stop giving Bryson and books kisses, or when Max (shockingly) hugs one of his brothers after he hurts them and is genuinely saying sorry. Yes, those little bright moments make all the crappy stuff worth it.

Peace out.

ps- did I ever mention you should click on the links of the advertisements on the side of blog when you visit? You should because I get a penny every time you do and if I even got a penny for every diaper change I've done in the past 15 months I'd be a RICH woman! SO let's start those pennies coming my way, shall we? wink wink. You can totally just exit out of them after you click on them.

pps- I never have time to re read this before I post more often than not, I am sincerely sorry for my grammatical errors. The children are crying so I must go forth

Friday, January 15, 2016

On "friends" and "following"

I'm constantly in a state of reevaluating what I spend my time on in life, especially when it comes to social media.

Social media came be this big black hole that does you no good. OR it can be this beacon to teach you new things and uplift and inspire you! I'm am constantly trying to corral mine to be the latter of those two.

Thus every few weeks or months it seems like I go through instagram and really thin out the amount of people I follow. It's not that I don't like people and unfollow them because of that, I just think to myself is this really doing me good seeing their constant photos, thoughts and what they're doing? The less people I follow, the less time I'm on my phone, and then the more time I'm with my family.

And then there's Facebook, I find myself pretty often clicking the button on Facebook that says "stay friends but stop seeing their updates". And then I thought to myself, I don't need to stay "friends" with nearly a 1000 people I don't know that well from elementary, high school and college. I went through it one day and went from 915 friends to 415. Again, it's not that I don't like those people but I really don't KNOW you well at all, there's not reason for us to stay "friends." Also I read an article recently about facebook "friends" that you were once friends/acquaintances with but now, 10 years later, you know nothing about their life or their character or their values really. I don't post many things about my family and children on Facebook but if I do, these strangers don't need to know about it. I never "de-friended" people before, but after reading that article about the safety of your kids I didn't care about hurting people's feelings of un-friending.

I do post a lot about my family on this blog but I feel like there's more privacy from a blog since people have to have the exact address and CHOOSE to come back to this specific site to look at my life. Maybe that's untrue, but blogs are not as popular as they once were.

SOOOOO If we are no longer friends on Facebook, I am not a follower of you on instagram, please please please don't be offended. I am just trying to be a better mother to my children, I absolutely promise. If we were friends again in real life and hanging out I would probably be back to following you on social media so I can foster my real time friendships, I feel like REAL  person to person relationships are the most helpful. I know we live in a virtual world now with lots of "online" relationships but I want the majority of mine to be REAL physical contact ones.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Southwest Airlines is the best!

Let's talk about Southwest airlines for a second.

They are just the best.

We love them so much, signing up for their Southwest Credit card has helped us tons, and we love earning points that go directly to flights to help us travel to see family more often!

2 free bags? Yes please.

Family boarding? Yes please?

Really nice flight attendants? Yep. I just can't say enough positive things about this company

This time coming home from our Christmas vacation we are cheap idiots and booked a flight to leave Saturday night at 11 pm and then drive through the night from Denver to Lincoln (our original plans were to be in Laramie, WY right after school for interviews and then fly out of Denver which is 1.5 hours away but interviews got cancelled because of bad roads but we still had to proceed forth with our flights, ha)

We arrive at the airport with 2 babies strapped onto us, Maxson running around (I forgot his ladybug leash backpack (man bug bag, thank you very much) at my mom's house much to our dismay, backpacks (1 on each of us), 4 luggage (one of those being a very heavy carryon full of computers, camera, and books), and 2 carseats. Ooh, we had so much stuff coming home from Christmas!!!!!

So we go check in and when we give them our confirmation numbers the agent say "Oh no, your flight goes out tomorrow night!" We couldn't believe it! AHHHHHHHH! In our minds we booked this flight for Saturday night so we could drive home Sunday morning and have a day to recover before Casey goes to school, we must have accidentally booked it on the wrong day when we were going back and forth between days of what to do. Oh man!!!!!

That kind woman goes and talks to a fellow Southwest gate agent, comes back and I hear her kinda yell back to the other woman "Ok, that's what I was thinking, it's the right thing to do." She then tells us she'll just move our flight to tonight for us. BLESS THAT WOMAN'S HEART!

She said there were 7 empty seats (in reality when we were on the plane there was 30 extra seats so it was really no big deal but still, they had no obligation to, but still did it for us which was SOOOOOOOO nice!)

Security went smooth (a million times faster than Denver's Security!), the babies were adorable in the airport waiting to get on the plane talking to all the strangers, we got stared at a ton from every stranger who couldn't believe we EACH had a baby strapped to the front of us (not small babies either I might add!) PLUS another kid with us, we were that circus. The babies slept on the flight, Quinn, who I had, went to sleep right away without a problem, Bryson chose to be awake quite a bit longer for poor Casey and after a tiny fit went to sleep in the baby whisperer's arms. Max somehow stayed awake the whole time watching a movie, he's crazy. Since it was a pretty empty flight we both had rows to ourselves which was the best!

A great thing I did this time around was hook the kids camelback's to a caribeaner onto the outside of my backpack and left them empty which made it all quick, easy, and not heavy. And then in one of my water bottles I filled it with milk for the babies.

We landed early, found our bags pretty easily. A great friend of mine in the Denver (hi Charley!) area did this tricky car situation for us and we walked out of baggage claim to our car there in pretty much the first parking spot at 1 am. IT WENT SO SMOOTHLY!

The kids all fell asleep immediately in the car, we stopped once to fill up with gas on the 6.5 hour drive. Casey drive the first 3.5 hours listening to the podcast Serial, I then drove the next 3 hours listening to what he had just heard. (we have SOOO enjoyed listening to it! can't wait to finish it! I was amazed at how easy the drive went for us all!

We got home at 8:45 am to our neighbors leaving for church. Our kids had just woken up and were going to be nowhere near letting us relax at home. But we were both surprisingly not that tired. So we packed up the crew and headed out to 9 am church getting there a bit late. We stayed in the hall the whole time not wanting to even THINK about struggling with out children inside the room our meeting was in which was good because they were all loud and needed time to roam.

I'm really glad we went to church. It's an important thing for us that our family go to church each week, we've been asked to keep the Sabbath Day holy and we're trying our hardest! Yeah, it was hard and it would have been SO much easier to stay home but that just didn't feel right. I've made covenants to keep the Sabbath Day Holy and bear His name, going to church is a very simple way I can show my love and gratitude towards my Father in Heaven!

Glad we are home!!!!!!!!!

PS- our original flight we accidentally scheduled for Sunday night ended up being delayed from 11 pm to 1:30 am!!!!!!!!!!! How awful would that have been for our little family! Tender mercy we were able to leave Saturday night!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Maxson turns THREE!

A little Mr Maxson had a birthday while we were in Wyoming! He woke up giddy to the traditional birthday decorations, faces and all. 
He and Casey got in the hot tub for his birthday which he was so totally excited about.
He loves getting in the "hawt tub!"
Max and I made the birthday cakes early in the morning when he awoke and then Aunt Tayli decorated them for us in the afternoon. Max was super stoked over the decorated cupcakes.
So excited to finally get to blow out his candles in the evening!
He counted the cupcakes and candles lots and lots.
We sang happy birthday to him about 7-8 times and he just kept blowing out the candles over and over, ha. We kept singing fast and faster, he just loved. it!

He went on a money hunt in the evening which he totally ate up. He sure does love money oddly enough already. Not clue why!

Love this crazy little boy of ours with all our hearts, he's truly the best.

**Update on potty training!**

Day 1 was miserable. 1 go in the potty and 4+ accidents
Day 2 was awesome. 8 successful potty trips and zero accidents! (I put a pull up on him when he and I went outside to play in the snow, it was wet when we came in but whatever).
Day 3 was awesome. No accidents,  6 successful potty trips.

I'm not sure what to do when we go out of the house (play outside go somewhere) just today while playing with friends at the church building I asked him a million times to go potty and then he finally peed his pants WHILE he was out of the gym get a drink at the drinking fountain RIGHT NEXT TO the bathroom for pete's sake! I don't want to rely on pull ups over the next few months, I just want him to do it! Any suggestions?

I was honestly about to give up after Day 1. He was AWFUL. Day 2 game changer was I finally convinced him to wear a longer shirt and no underwear and he went by himself every time. He would absolutely not go when I asked him to even when he drank tons of juice, ha. He likes to dictate his own actions I see. I love looking at how proud his face is when I'm cheering him on after going potty. He's trying to hold back the smiles but can't. SOOOO I hope this sticks and we do it this time around!!!!!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Christmas (festivities) with the Cutlers in AZ

For Christmas evening we headed down to Casey's brother's house, about 30 minutes away to join with the Cutler's on the rest of our Christmas festivities! We had a delicious Christmas dinner with ham, rolls, green beans, potatoes, and sparkling cider; the normal awesomeness. Maxson was excited to "cheers" everyone with his cup
The kids spent A TON of time outside on the ball pit tramp all week. Cody and Camille were brilliant to add the balls to the tramp! Sadly it was a tin bit cold all week and with the tramp being in the shade the babies didn't get to spend as much time out there as they would have liked. Whenever the door opened and closed without them going outside they had a fit crying at the door, ha. There were also lots of tears shed on the tramp from kids (cough cough Maxson) being too rough on others.
We went in the evening to see temple lights! Did I mention we loved having Tayli back for Christmas? She is such a joy to be around, truly. We love that girl so much.

The girls got pedicures one afternoon and we all thoroughly enjoyed. It was disgusted at the amount of skin they got off with literally a cheese grater! Eww. BUT the sugar scrub was so wonderful, it's my favorite part! I was stoked for my gold nail polish. On a different day the boys went golfing per usual.
We watched a few movies while together including Far from Madding Crowd, Transformers, and the Ultimate gift. There were 2 games of settlers played together, and a bunch of delicious desserts thanks to Camille!
We went to San Tan Flats for dinner one evening, that sure was a fun place! Imagine this: a "restaurant" outdoors with tons of fire pits and camping tables smooshed together as close as they could fit, loud country music, no waiters, no rules, a building close by you can go in and order great steak/cowboy food. It was just a super fun atmosphere. i wish the babies had been on year older though, they make things difficult ha. Cody and Camille came prepared with skewers and marshmallows. graham crackers, chocolate, and reese's for dessert, it was so fun! It was a little colder than we all anticipated, we totally would have stayed longer if we weren't worried for the babies being cold, oh yeah, and cranky to go to bed. But I definitely recommend this place if you're willing to get there!

The family went to Fat Cats and went golfing, then headed to Oregano's for delicious dinner! I stuck back at my parent's house with the babies to visit a cousin who came in town from SLC. Divide and conquer.
For 3 mornings straight we went to Camille's boot camp she does every morning. It was really fun and super hard! She's got a great thing going on with the group she's apart of. We were all super sore but it was fun working out as a family. Half the year they workout at a park while 2 moms watch the kids on a playground and during the really hot months of the year they workout at a dance studio in one of the rooms.
We met up with my mom at this really fun park kinda far away. It was totally worth the drive though, the Camille's and our kids had an absolute blast there. Do you see that huge structure smack in the middle? It's this super duper tall rope structure that kids can just freely climb. Totally dangerous and totally awesome. I love that these ropes courses give kids a legit challenge and once the succeed their confidence is totally boosted.
For New Year's Eve we went with Cody and Camille to Schnepf Farms! The stake rents out the facility and all are invited! The rides and food were free, the kids loved it all so much. At 7:45 they lit  off fireworks for a great end to the evening. The Cutlers had already left town that morning but my mom joined in with us and we couldn't have done it without her!

Other memories to be added:

Sleeping was hilarious. We began the week with our family of 5 in one room. We can sleep like that for one night but beyond that it's miserable and the babies wake up more and realize we're in the room with them and it's just awful. So we took our air mattress into Cody and Camille's room on their floor where Tayli was on the floor too. It was comical with all the beds everywhere. And their little boy was in their closet, ha. To add to the fun we had to blow up our air mattress like 3 times or more during the night, ha. Oh the memory making.

Often when we're with the Cutlers it feels like I'm living in the beginning part of Home Alone (without the really mean Uncle). There's so much hustle and bustle and noise and people working in every direction, children making mischief, but an overall sense of happiness of being together. And it's always really loud with the children awake.

A week or two later while writing this I know there's fun details I'm missing but oh well. It was a fun time together, Cutlers. Glad we were all able to meet up!