Thursday, April 24, 2014

Class parties

Kara had a spring party at school a couple weeks ago. They had a trivia/minute to win it party. It was fun to see her interacting with her buddies at school. Kiersten had a party too, but it overlapped with Kara's, so I could only help out at one.
Kara's minute to win it challenge was putting together a cereal box puzzle. It was harder than it looked.

The kids were super cool in their prize sunglasses.

I also got to help out at Evie's preschool Easter party. It was really fun, and I love that her school gets to celebrate actual holidays. I was in charge of the snack. The cupcakes and peeps were a big hit. I don't know who divided up the groups, but Evie was lucky enough to be with her best little buddies.
I ran the bunny hop game, so that's really the only game I got pictures of. The kids had a blast. Some of them fell down, but nobody cried, thank goodness.

After snack and games, they got to hunt for Easter eggs on the playground.
Evie found her 6 eggs rather quickly.

After all that., some of the kids were still asking, "what's next?" The energy is just endless with these little guys!
The craft they made was an egg carton that they used for the egg hunt. Evie is very proud of hers, and wanted me to save it with the other Easter stuff for next year. Hopefully it will still be intact when we get everything out next Easter.

I know I already shared Six Flags pictures, but I got some more this weekend. This one just to show off my new short hair :) (and super cool sunglasses borrowed from Kara)
Kiersten jumped at the chance to try on my sunglasses.

Kids just having fun posing for pictures while we waited for food.
I had to get a picture of Ben's leg wound. He got this playing softball last week. It looks awful in real life. He came home really bloody still. But I am proud to say I got most of the blood out of the t-shirt he used to wrap it up so they'd let him keep playing.
He's had a pretty miserable week with this leg, especially now that it is scabbing over, and breaking back open. Hopefully he learned his lesson about "sliding into third". He had another game this week, and I was at the playground with the kids, but kept an eye on him to make sure he didn't try to pull any funny business again. He still went to his basketball and football games this week, so it must not be too bad...

Ben and I were practically jumping for joy that the girls are both tall enough to ride this without an adult now. They always want to ride it, but we both hate this one. It is nauseating.
Ben not winning a prize for the girls.. hehehe. I always stand there hoping he doesn't win, so I don't have to find room for a giant stuffed toy. Kiersten really wanted that smurfette.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Sunday

The girls had a pretty fun Easter. It was the very first time since Ben and I got married that we didn't travel to see family, or have anyone visiting for Easter.
Kara was really excited about her new dress. When I went in to check on her in bed, she had it laid out for the morning. She and Kiersten woke up a lot earlier than I thought they were going to.
Kiersten kept saying that she looked like a little lady. She really wanted to hold out her coat, so the dress underneath would show for the picture. Looking at the pictures, I feel kinda bad I didn't get them shoes to match their dresses, but they didn't care.
Evie had to do the same pose as Kiersten. She kept doing it for the rest of the pictures all day. She has been going crazy seeing this dress in her closet, but not getting to wear it. She was so happy to finally put it on.
Ready to find some eggs!

The grass was really long, which we thought would be a good thing. Unfortunately, some of the eggs were hidden too well. They had to keep going back over the yard to find more eggs. Later in the morning, I noticed we were short one of the boiled eggs. I had to go out and search for it, and it was hard to find!
Kiersten did just fine running around in her high heels. I was worried she'd get hurt, but she's a pro. She just told me today that it's okay she was a bald baby, because now she has gorgeous hair, and is going to be famous and fashionable.
Evie was such a happy little hunter. She excitedly ran to show Ben everything she found. There was a lot of squealing.
The Easter bunny put Ben's basket up in the tree. The girls sure got a kick out of that!
Kara got a few different things than the younger two. She told me later that she was relieved to not get babyish stuff.
Kiersten almost stopped hunting after she found her basket. She was so excited that she could see a stuffed Olaf doll in there. She just wanted to dig in and get him out to play.
Evie was so so excited to find these little "palace pets". They are the supposed pets of some of the Disney princesses. She's been really into them lately. She ran to Ben screaming, "Daddy! Look Daddy!"
Kara was the last to find her basket. I was so tempted to coach her to it, as Kiersten and I had seen where it was. But I controlled myself, and just waited for her to finally locate it.
It was a perfect, beautiful day.
Finally able to play with Olaf.
Evie found the most quarters. She ended up with $12. Kara had $11, and Kiersten found $7. Evie was getting worried at first, because she hadn't gotten any candy eggs. I think she ended up with about 7 pieces of candy over all.
Kiersten got plenty of candy, and almost all of the "trinket" eggs, with things like rings, lip smackers, etc.
The day before, the girls had a neighborhood Easter egg hunt at the park. Afterward, we came home to make some rice krispie eggs. Ben insists on having these every year. I made 2 for each of us girls, and 3 for him. But since I don't much care for them, he got more than his share. I think the girls may have given him some of theirs as well. We put some jelly beans inside one of Evie's eggs. I didn't get to see her eat it though, but she hopefully enjoyed the surprise.
We also colored the boiled eggs. Evie kept dropping them, so we had lots of cracked up eggs.
Fun family time. Ben even tore himself away from sports long enough to help a bit.
Evie just wanted to make pink eggs.
The girls wanted to make a bunny cake. Instead of frosting, I covered it in mashed up strawberries, and then whipped cream on top. It tasted really good. We took it to our friends house for Easter dinner. I didn't remember to bring the camera, but we all had a great dinner and a fun time. Kara is now saving up her money to buy an electric scooter like her friends have.
And that's how we do Easter.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Laundry room makeover!

So, my laundry room has been finished for over a month, and I am finally getting around to sharing a few pictures. I really wish I'd taken a picture of it with everything still in, to show how cluttered, and annoying it was. But I didn't think about it, til I'd already emptied everything out. Notice my horrible wire shelving, ugh. Things were always falling between the spaces, especially when Ben would dig through his tool box. I found so many screws, nails, etc behind the dryer when he moved it out.
This is what we had for shoe organization. As you can imagine, the girls NEVER hung their shoes on the pegs, and even though, I'd sometimes put them up, there just weren't enough pegs to be practical. Ben never used them either...
This closet was being used for our brooms and mops, but there was so much extra space being wasted. It also had the awful wire shelving.
The people who we bought the house from had their washer/dryer on pedestals, so the unfinished paint didn't show. But ours sit on the floor, so there is a big ugly white gash above the dryer. Also take note of the ugly vinyl floor. It doesn't even look as bad in the photo as it did in real life. There were several gashes and stains.
Goodbye inefficient, ugly laundry room!
My first step was painting! I love the teal color I ended up picking. I wish I could get the exact color to come through the pictures, but I am tired of fooling around with the photo editing, so just imagine this color a bit bluer and brighter. My favorite part of the room is the shoe shelf! We can fit so many shoes on there. Kara and Evie are great about keeping their shoes organized. Kiersten needs to be reminded to put hers away still. Just a few weeks ago, I took a tumble down the stairs when I tripped over a pair of shoes she left on them. My tailbone is still recovering from that! But I think she's starting to do better. I gave Ben the lowest shelf so he can just kick his shoes off and slide them under.
Our Friend Josh put in our tile floor, and I love it! (he also did our hardwood in December) I love love love how it turned out, and it's much easier to clean than the vinyl. I was nervous to go dark, but I think there is so much white, that it balances out nicely.

We moved the brooms to a different closet, and freed this closet up for some shelving. We also put in a hanging rod (by we, I mean California closets) So now this is where we are keeping the girls coats and jackets. We left the bottom empty, and moved in the recycle trash can, and the laundry hamper. I love having those out of the way, and behind a closed door.
MY lovely laundry room! I admit I was nervous about the blue when it was just a big empty area. But I loved it again as soon as the shelving was installed, and the appliances brought back in. I was hoping to get a stylish new laundry sink, but unfortunately fortunately, Ben was able to fix the old one.

And any room looks better with an Evie in it! On the wall to the left you can see the coat/backpack hangers we got for the girls to use. I can't even explain how nice it is for them to be able to hang up or retrieve their own things. And they actually do use them most of the time. We ended up having to put the laundry drying rack just above the hooks. It didn't work out where we were planning to put it. So on laundry day, they do have a harder time getting to the hooks.
Most of the time every inch of space is taken up by shoes. I do try to take a few pairs upstairs every couple of days, but they tend to make their way back down again. This shelf makes such a difference! The main floor is no longer cluttered with everyone's shoes everywhere, and the girls don't have to dig through a huge basket of shoes every time we're trying to get out the door. The closet above is full of all of the girls' swim stuff. That's another thing I'm thrilled I no longer have to see all the time, all the towels, goggles, sunglasses, sunscreen, etc.
How it looks today!
I love the little sign I found at Kohl's. I really wanted to get a sign that said "LAUNDRY", but haven't found anything. I still might just make something myself to sit on top of the cupboards. Those baskets have been floating around for about a year, looking for a home. I'm glad I finally found a good place for them. The big basket is where we keep Ben's indoor tools. Most of his things are in the garage, but there are some items that he uses more often.
I'm sure happy to have it all done! this was a project I thought would be waiting til next year, so when Ben said it was in the budget for this year, I couldn't wait to get started.