Some of my art therapy friends invited us to Shine where there would be a drum circle and mandala making. I decided it would be fun for the whole family to participate. We sat in circle and grabbed a drum or instrument of our choice and began playing. Finding our own rhythm both personally and as a group was awesome. Then we made mandalas and then more drumming! Bay and June really liked it. I thought Bay would be dancing the whole time but she didn't. She actually sat and played drums with everyone else. Daddy and the girls did an awesome job on their manadalas. See pics below. If they do this monthly I think I might have to become a regular member. I would go alone though. It would be much more relaxing that way. I am glad I was able to experience something cool with my family though.
Drawings clockwise from top left: daddy, mommy, Bay, and June
We were invited to join some friends at Art Sparks this week. A friend helped us get in with a free pass. It is a children's area in the Speed Art Museum. The girls really had fun and want to go back soon. Afterwards we went to McDonalds. Fun day!
I decided to make some paper ornaments after inspiration from blogs and a friend. Then I hung them up . They turned out really beautiful. It made me think of origami or the good ol' paper chains I made as a child. It was a little addicting. I just kept adding loops. It was easy and beautiful. Just how I like it.
A month or so ago, Bay's behavior was terrible. She was very disobedient, defiant, dramatic, crying all the time, etc. It was bad enough that something needed to be done. I assumed it was the terrible threes since the twos were not bad. I did two things different. I began working on a behavior chart. I found one on the internet I liked and got started. It took me a while to make it so in the mean time we began spending more family time together. Nothing special planned, just hanging around the house. Daddy and I made ourselves available. During this time Bay went back to her old self. Thank God! I finished the chart and made one for June too. Bay loves awards and reaching goals so I knew she would like the chart. We are using them now. And it does help. Bay biggest weakness is not brushing her teeth with a happy heart when daddy tells her to. Now that she knows she will get a star on her chart, toothbrush time is cry free! Below is a picture of the chart. All the stars are velcroed to it so I can continue to use it each week. I printed the images from the internet and had to draw Bay's pull-up. Our printer is out of ink so I had to print at the library. Since the library only has black ink I just colored the images with markers.
I was really bored yesterday and after surfing the blog world, I found some inspiration. While the girls were taking a nap I cut out pieces for a christmas tree collage. It was all ready and waiting for them at the kitchen table. They both did a wonderful job. I had to help June just a little. Bay did it about 95% all by herself. They turned out really beautiful. Bay said she was making hers for daddy.
Bay had her first dance recital recently-The Nutcracker. She did an excellent job with hair, make-up, and the costume. She watched and copied her teacher but didn't smile a whole lot. Afterwards we went out for a sweet treat. She saw cherries on a cake and decided to have a bowl full of cherries and no cake. Silly girl. Can't wait for the next recital in June.
I met with some ladies from my church to make our annual advent wreaths. I made a wreath last year so I decided to do something different this time. I google imaged advent calendar and found one to make. I didn't make it exactly like the one I found but I think it turned out just as good. It was very time consuming but I had my mind set on this one. Since this one doesn't look like a present the kiddos haven't asked about it yet. When they figure out there are goodies in the tins I am sure they will start bugging us about it. Each tin is velcroed to the canvas board. I used felt for the flowers and I used scrapbooking paper for all the paper cut-outs. We will be putting up the Christmas tree in the morning. The girls are excited to decorate it this year.
Happy 2nd Birthday June! June loves puppies, babies, and beaded necklaces right now. We had a quick low key puppy party for her. She had pancakes with sprinkles for breakfast. She ate puppy chow for a snack after naptime. She enjoyed her balloons and pictures of puppies I collected to hang up.We played a sniff game with scents in jars. They had to guess the smell. She had dog bone breadsticks with her dinner. I made puppy cupcakes for the party. Mimi and Poppy dropped by to give her her gift so I decided to light the candles and open the presents while then. She really had a good time. Her favorite present was her new babydoll. She slept with it that night and the first thing she said in the morning was, "I like my baby". She is so stinkin cute! Earlier that day when June recieved a birthday card in the mail she would not share with Bay. Check out the video below. Bay was determined to look at and hold the card and kept asking but June said, "NO, my card!"
I am very thankful all the birthdays are over now. I am pooped. I wonder if the the hubby and kids will make my birthday as festive as I made theirs.......hmmmm......probably not. oh well.
Tony was off work today so that means.......WE GOTTA DO SOMETHING FUN! Well, we went to Slowpoke Farm to pick pumpkins. Their website does not give hours of operation and they won't answer the phone so we just went. We knew it would be muddy but the family was all here and needed pumpkins soooo........we picked pumpkins. They didn't open until 12 so we left some money by their front door and a message on their phone. It was chilly and muddy but still fun. We were the only ones there so we didn't get a family picture. We came home and decorated the girls' pumpkins with Mr. Potatoe head pieces. They thought it was funny.
The creative bug has hit!!!!!! I want to make everything. God has definetly filled my heart with the desire to create. Create anything! Top ones on my list are 1)notecards with fabric on it for christmas party presents, 2)sweet treats(especially in the shape of puppies for June's birthday- more on that next week), 3) a window table, 4)this awesome gift for a kid. soooooooo theraputic. And if it can be theraputic, I want it. I guess it is the art therapist in me (that I will one day get paid for). This band-aid blanket is not expensive but I can make it for cheaper and have fun doing it. Check it out. so cool. http://www.oopdoohug.com/brown-sugar-hug-alt-view.html Ian, you you are reading this, you might get one for christmas if Aunt Netty can make it look good. What color would you like? wouldn't it be great with a cool book in it about being sick? I know Bay would love it and would put her Raffie right in pocket. And here is a picture of my awesome husband and children because I like to post pics with my posts even when they are not relevant.
I collect recipes all the time. If it taste good, I want the recipe. If it looks good on paper/tv/internet, I will write it down and try it out. I think baking may be one of my passions. I LOVE food and enjoy the process of making beautiful treats. One blog I follow, WhimSy Love, had a recipe for cream cheese chocolate cupcakes. Cream cheese and chocolate. Probably two of my favorite foods. Cream cheese is awesome because you can have it for breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner. So I was eager to try this out. OH MY GOODNESS! I am not kidding people. so freakin' awesome. After I eat one I am so happy I get the giggles. Tony fell in love too. Here is a picture of him and the last one. He even stated, "Annette, since you made these I have been eating two at a time and now there is only one left.......can you make more next week?"
And don't be fooled by its appearance. I thought the same thing. The cream cheese and chocolate chips sink in as it cools. And it does not come from a box. Homemade Yumminess. If you can't find the recipe on her blog I can give it to you. Just let me know.
I have been fascinated with our monarch butterflies. We have a butterfly bush and this year the monarchs found it. There were 3 on there at the same time the other day. So beautiful. I want to plant another bush beside it and hope for more butterflies.
We went to our first Balloon Glow last night.We got there early so in the pics it isn't that dark. I don't think I have ever been that close to a hot air balloon before. I have always wanted to ride in one. One day I will. Anyway, the girls were scared of the fire that lights up the balloons. It was loud. My girls are wimpy chickens who don't like loud things. 4th of july is not the best holiday for us right now. No other children seemed to be afraid. Bay and June eventually got use to it and had a blast running around with balloons tied to their wrists. It was very dark and it kinda freaked me out when the girls ran too far away from us. Glow in the dark shirts and accessories are a must next time. Bay decided to be brave and walked pretty close to the basket of the balloon. Tony and I just sat back, enjoyed the show, and listened to our children laugh. We will go to another one for sure.
This summer as the girls and I were playing outside on a porch in our backyard I said, "Bay, we could have a talent show". She loved that and we played and then I thought, hmm... we could have a talent show birthday party. From then on I started preparing for this party. On her actually birthday I made star-shaped toast with jelly and sprinkles for breakfast. Then as a tradition on birthdays I read the the book, "On the Day You Were Born" by Debra Frasier. It also gets read again at bedtime by daddy. She opened one present when daddy got home from work. Then the next day was a Saturday so we had the talent show party that day. It was so fun. Our family and friends ate pizza, salad, and fruit. Then we did the usual birthday stuff- birthday song, blow out candles, eat cake and open presents. Then the fun began with performing on the "stage". Kids danced, read poems, blew a bubble from gum, put on puppet shows. Pure silliness. I love it. It is exactly what I had hoped for. Then I helped Tony put on his puppet show that was similar to the boy who cried wolf. Thank You Jill for the awesome puppets! Especially the snail puppet. We thought the kids would never stop playing with the puppets. There will definitely be more puppet shows around the house. I just need to start collecting some quality puppets . Happy 3rd birthday Bay!
I follow the WhiMSy love blog. She is so stinkin' creative. She and her daughters made these necklaces with a container to put bugs in. We made ours today. so fun and simple. I wish I could think of things like that. Click on her link for the tutorial. Here is Bay and June wearing them. June of course loves necklaces so whether or not she puts a bug in it she is happy.
I will blog about Tony's awesome birthday since he won't. He had been feeling sick and stayed home from work the day before. On his birthday, he slept in and then decided to go to work. I was glad since I wanted to do our usual surprise when he comes home after work. After he left I began blowing up balloons. The girls and I decorated the kitchen with them. When the girls went down for a nap, I made rice Krispie treats. Later, we anxiously waited for daddy to pull into the driveway. As he walked in the door we greeted him with a Rice Krispie "cake" and song. Then we gave him his present. Tony then got cleaned up and ready to go to the Emery concert. We thought we were super late since the event started at 6. It was held at a church. We knew it would be geared towards a younger crowd. We got there and realized how old we were. They had lots of outdoor games and stuff for the teenagers to do. It was so weird to be in that environment. We definitely felt out of place. We decided to go get something to eat and come back later when the bands would play. Emery wasn't scheduled to play until 10. So we rode around trying to find something to eat and then Tony yells, "that's Emery right there!" They were walking across the highway to go eat. We decided to let them choose were we would eat. They chose Wings To Go. We went in right behind them. I bet Tony was about to pass out. He really likes this band and they were right there in front of him. They are a Christian band that is pretty successful but not so well known that fans would follow them around and beg for autographs and pictures (except us-ha ha). At least not in small town IN. No, we didn't bug them with all that. We just sat near them and ate our dinner. Tony finally struck up a conversation with them. It was awesome. When Tony walked away, I told them it was his birthday. So then we talked about that. We decided to go back to the church and get close to the stage. And that we did. Since the crowd was small and it was in the parking lot of a church we were able to comfortably get to the stage. There were several mosh pits but we only got knocked around once. Toby, lead singer from Emery, gave Tony a happy birthday shout out and dedicated a song to him. Awesome moment again. I wished they would have played a little longer but what they played was good. We hung around afterwards to get a picture and thank them. I am so glad I was able to enjoy this with Tony. He has been to one of their shows before but I was unable to go. This was probably the best birthday he has had in a long time. If you have never heard any of their songs check out this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOtAgiH2Wfo
I love knowing creative people. Catherine Clare, who I have known since elementary school, has started a new little business which I think will be a hit. She photographs architecture and nature that form natural letters of the alphabet. Many people are ordering the letters of their last name but my name is too long so I think I will just get an "S" or a monogram "tSa". She is having a giveaway now until friday so click over and write a comment to enter. Below is a picture from her Natural Collection where she has decoupaged the photo onto a wood frame.
With vacation over now it is time to plan birthday fun! Hubby has a birthday on the 14th. We are going to an Emery concert. Then Bay's talent/puppet show birthday party is on Aug 29th. I just sent out the invitations to a few people from church who have little girls Bay has played with before. I hope I haven't gotten myself in too deep. I have never invited this many people to my house and I hope I will be able to entertain and feed them all. And if it rains I will probably have to cancel because I am pretty sure everyone would not fit inside our house. And if it doesn't rain and people do show up, I hope Tony and Bay will entertain everyone on our little "stage". Then in october, it is June's turn. I can't wait for all the balloons, cake, and singing. Life/Birth-what an awesome thing to celebrate!
Well, we are back but we aren't happy. Our brains are stuck in beach mode. I think I am having withdrawals or something. We had such a restful vacation at Dauphin Island, AL. We stayed at the Whale House. The girls loved it. Never a complaint about the beach. I didn't really even have to discipline much since they were occupied with fun and family. I guess that is why I was at peace- the kids were content. I didn't get as dark as I had hoped but any tan is a good tan for me. June was scared of the waves so she kept her distance. Luckily, there was an area where the ocean spilled over and provided us with a baby pool- pee included. Bay ran through the water with some little friends she made. Uncle Trae and Aunt Tiffany let the kids fly a kite. That was a first for my kids. Daddy spent most of the time fishing either off the beach or on a pier. He thoroughly enjoyed it. We took our flashlights and went searching for crabs one night with the kids. They loved it. Tony and I spent our 5th yr. wedding anniversary while we were there. We went out to eat and then headed to the beach to star gaze. The cool breeze felt so good. It was the most comfortable weather I think I have ever experienced. I almost fell asleep it was so comfortable. Someone shot fireworks off on the beach near us. That was cool since we got free entertainment on our anniversary. I thanked Tony for planning that ahead of time, ha ha! It was really good to just hang out with family. We hope to add more family next year and we probably will end up at Dauphin Island again or somewhere near it. And here is Bay and June in action:
Today, I took Bay to her first dance class. It is an intro to dance called Mommy and Me. It only lasts 30 minutes. There were probably 6 girls and their mommies there. Her teacher is Mrs. Connnie. When we arrived we saw our friends Holly and her daughter Jordan. We chatted with them for a little while and then Bay saw the studio. She started to go in and said "I am ready to dance". Unfortunately it wasn't time yet since classes were changing. When it was time she went in and began dancing all around the room as if she had been waiting forever for this moment and she was finally "home"(see video below). Her leotard and her ballet shoes are a bit too big but that didn't stop her. The ballet shoes we purchased from payless start at size 7 and she needs a 6(she will grow into them). All the little girls were so cute in their ballet attire. They all lined up and followed instructions from their teacher. The little routine they worked on was to the song "Bipity Bopity Boo". I was very proud of Bay. She listened and followed instructions well . I hope this behavior continues each week. Sometimes she can be very hard on herself if she can't do things perfect. I always tell her she does great. After all their hard work they got stickers. Bay said, "I am thirsty and hungry" She had worked up an appetite. Some of the girls began playing ring around the rosy. It was cute to watch the girls interact and dance together. When I told her the class was over she became very sad. She did not want it to be over. We took some pictures with her friend Jordan before we left. We will miss next week due to the beach vacation but I can't wait to go with her again.
Grandma and Mrs. Andrea came to visit us. My mom has an interest in drift wood and I knew the perfect place to get some. Big ones too. We went to the Falls of the Ohio in Indiana. It is a rocky area where there are many fossils. We went to the beach area right before it. It was hot but cool in the shade. I brought the beach toys since there is sand to play in. This was the second time Bay has played in sand. All went well with that so our beach trip to AL should be great. There are so many trees down and drift wood everywhere. Someone had put a long board over a down tree and made a see-saw. So I see-sawed with the girls. Drift wood was collected and hauled to the truck. We then had a picnic overlooking the river and let the kids play on a playground. Naptime was coming quickly and they were very fussy and tired so we headed home.