Purple Vitamins

Its funny how kids minds work. As soon as I turn on the shower, the kids come running from wherever they are to collect a vitamin. Connor usually starts it, yelling out as he is coming "I want a purple vitamin!" and Isla is close behind him. She even yells it now too. But, I never really understood the whole purple part of the equation, so I decided to ask. And the answer I got totally made sense. It's because purple is close to blue and blue is Connor's favorite color. Duh! And, well, at this point, Isla is a big follower and just wants whatever her brother wants!

I'm glad to have this little purple vitamin lover back under our roof after he was away with my parents for five days. That's the longest we have ever been apart and the boy could barely be bothered with giving his ole mom a hug when he got home. It's ok though, I know he still loves and needs me because I woke up this morning with him in bed with me!

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Summer Fun

Summer as a stay at home mom is kind of like summer as a kid. All my friends are suddenly available without the constraints of school runs and activities. That means tons of hang out time and adventures. Picnics with tons of kids. Pool parties that last half the day. Showing up at someone's house in the morning and not leaving until 4:30, realizing that I need to get home and get dinner started! I told you it is kind of like summer as a kid!

Yesterday, a few of us moms took our kids to the river behind a friend's house. Isla actually enjoyed herself way more than I expected. She did complain about hiking through the bushes on the way in and out, but the water itself she totally loved. And, much to my dismay, she totally loved the algae (green slime) and would pick it up and throw it. At my insistence, she switched to rocks.

Though Connor and Isla don't go back to school until September, most of their friends start the second week of August. I can't help but be bummed a little bit that the freedom that summer brings is almost over. I can already tell I am going to be one of those mom's that loathes the end of summer, as I would prefer to have my babes home with me, going out on adventures and not caring what time of day it is.

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Because I got a new camera and NEEDED to try it out, so what better than some daddy/daughter pics? Isla was hamming it up for the camera and has been relishing her time as an only child (Connor is with my parents for a few days). These pictures reminded me of some I took of Connor and Ian when Connor was a wee little guy. My photography skills have obviously improved since then, but those pictures are still special to me non-the-less. I can remember taking them in Connor's room in Scotland just a few days before I was taking Connor to the US to meet everyone. Just as I will remember the evening in Modesto where Isla was in such a good mood and enjoying being alone with her mom and dad.

^^ This may be one of my favorite pictures yet of Ian and Isla. I have very few "favorite" pictures, but oh my, I love this one and think it is making the list.

Isla prefers to wear her sunglasses upside down. I would like to chalk it up to the fact that the point on the heart is probably uncomfortable, but she does it with all sunglasses and totally freaks if I try to turn them over.

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Connor: He got to do VBS at his preschool this week. The boy is so social that these types of things are good for him. He would go live with his friends, if I let him. 

 Isla: It seems everyday she is getting more girly and grown up. She now tells me how she wants me to do her hair and tries putting copious amounts of hair bows in said hair at one time. 

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014."

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Flowers & Kitties

Just as I was always impressed at how the attraction to tractors and trains seemed to be built into Connor, I am equally impressed at the girly ways built into Isla. Girlfriend loves her some jewelry. And she also can't pass a flower without picking it. If I insist on not picking it, then she must stop, smell it and say what color it is. It is pretty dang cute.

I also may or may not refer to Isla as the "crazy cat lady". It started with a stuffed cat and the obsession grew. Getting her hands on real kitties at friends houses has only caused her love of the animal to grow. I bought her a cat shirt (a cute one, not a corny one) and she asks to wear it. One of my friends has the calmest most kid friendly kittens ever. They take hours of abuse play from Isla. They let her carry them around, hold them in her lap, hand feed them. They are VERY patient cats.

Isla sat like this with this cat for about 10 minutes. I couldn't believe the cat put up with it. Also, I feel the need to point out this is the first time Isla has ever given me a cheese smile when I took her picture. I find it equally funny and cute. We may need to practice smiling given that it looks like she just ate a lemon! 

Oh my girly girl. I never thought I would be able to handle having a daughter. But really, I totally love it.

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Homemade Popsicles + Nuby Garden Fresh Fruitsicles Review

I feel like endless popsicle eating is a right of passage for childhood summers. Heck, I want popsicles to be included in my daily diet during the summer! As my kids appetites for popsicles grew, so did my desire to make healthy ones at home. Healthy ones are easy to make too. I have tried all sorts of varieties:

* cut up grapes with apple juice
* smashed strawberries in their own juice
* smashed peaches topped up with apple juice
* homemade lemonade

The options are limitless. Though, I must say, be careful what crazy recipes you try off of pinterest because I have made some rather odd tasting popsicles before...lets just say steer clear of adding herbs and coconut milk (the real thick stuff, not the fake stuff people drink instead of cows milk) to popsicles. It's just weird. 

Anyway, I jumped at the opportunity to try out Nuby's new garden fresh fruitsicles. It is really a straight forward system. Put whatever ingredients you choose into the containers, add the sticks/handles and freeze. These molds are on the smaller side (1 ounce each), but my kids have never complained and I have eaten them numerous times and enjoy the small refreshing snack. And, to be honest, I like that they are small because mashing up fruit does take work. 

The handles on these are nice and big for small little hands. And, as an added bonus, the inside of the handle catches all the popsicle drips...of course popsicle drips only happen to small children and not seasoned popsicle eaters like myself or Connor ;) You can find Nuby garden fresh fruitsicles at Amazon

Have you tried any fun popsicle recipes this summer?

I was provided the nuby garden fresh fruitsicles for my review, but all my opinions are truly my own and are honest.  

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The Fair

We took the kids to the fair on Saturday. As the kids get older, these types of things become more and more fun. Connor seemed just as excited about the rides as the food. Though, that's probably because there were a ton of icee stands and he is a HUGE fan of the frozen sugar drink. And Isla just barely is tall enough to ride the kiddie rides. So everyone got to participate in the fun.

Isla spent the vast majority of the time on rides looking totally pissed off. I know she was having fun, but no matter how much I tried, I couldn't coax a smile out of her. But, this car ride that threw them around a corner, made her so happy and without prompting, she threw her hands in the air. It was totally cute.

The Food Network actually came to our fair this year and filmed. One of the things they highlighted was a lobster corn dog. Ian got one and really liked it. I took a bite and wasn't a huge fan. It was just too saucy for me. So, I got myself a normal corn dog and covered it in ketchup and mustard...because that is how it tastes best!

I am a sucker for photo booths, especially the old fashioned ones. I loved them when I was a teenager and I love them just as much now. Ian and I used to do them all the time, and I still make him when we come across one. Well, this was the first time we did one as a family and it was totally great. I want to make these a tradition. Just look at Connor in the third picture and Isla in the fourth one. Oh my, I love it so much! It is now decorating our frig.

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Connor: Because that is a comfortable way to relax in front of the tv! This little boy never wants to stop moving, even if he gets to watch his favorite movie "Emmett" (aka The Lego Movie). 

Isla: I just get done talking about her decorating her room someday and here so goes and decorates her bed! It makes sense that she would throw a kitty sticker on there though, as she is the "crazy cat lady". 

"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014."

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Oh Motherhood

Have you ever had one of those moments when you climb into bed at night and your foot hits something wet and gooey in bed? It was, of course, a banana one of my kids put in my bed, then jumped on a few times (they love jumping on our bed). 

Or maybe you came across a potty training toddler that pooped in her pants then tried to clean it up herself? Yeah, it's not pretty. 

Or maybe it was your children fighting over who gets to help you in a store...and of course one (if you are lucky, it isn't both) melts down because they don't get their way. 

Motherhood isn't always pretty. But usually, in the midst of those gross/stressful/crazy moments, I am just wishing someone was there to laugh along with me...well, Ian was for the banana in bed incident and even got to help me change the sheets at midnight. When I think about these types of things later, I am kind of grossed out...well, at least by any situation that deals with bodily fluids. And, if anyone else's kid did them to me, I would probably not want to handle it. Because who would just take a booger out of the hands of someone else's toddler?! But, you know, with my own, I put on my big girl panties and deal with it. Then, I text a couple people and let them know what just happened! Because, it's just too gross/funny/weird not to share. 

Motherhood isn't always glamorous. But, it is the only job that pays with that warm fuzzy feeling, with chubby little arms wrapped around your neck, squeezing you tight, with "I wuv you" being said to you. 

I heard recently that people are becoming scared of having children of their own because moms are being too honest about the struggles of parenting. I find that funny. Because, let me be honest, there have been sucky sides to every job I have had, but I still did them. And, guess what, the rewards were not nearly as great as motherhood. So, to all of you yet-to-be parents out there, don't be scared. Just know that it truly will be different with your kid because, well, it's your kid and you do it all in love. Oh, and you will totally want to share your insane/gross/ridiculous stories as well! Because, well, if you don't share them, it is almost as if it didn't happen. 

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Fashion on the Fifteenth

Even a year ago, you would have scratched your head when you looked at my summer wardrobe. I literally had two pairs of shorts. Why? I hated shorts. My legs have always been my least favorite part of my body, so from my late teens on, I avoided shorts like the plague. And, the two pairs I had went down to my knees.

I'm not sure what happened, but I decided to try shorter shorts. It started with a pair I ordered online from Old Navy. When they came, they totally fit, but just felt so freaking short...because, well, they didn't go down to my knees! But, I happened to order them right before my birthday and Ian got me a cute flowy tunic for my birthday that ended up looking perfect with my smaller than normal shorts, so I kept them.

Not only did I keep them and wear them all the time, I went out and bought another pair of shorts that don't touch my knees. I am like a new woman! To be honest, I feel like I have finally figured out what works for my body. For years, I always wore tight shirts because I was afraid any bagginess made me look "fat". Well, guess what? I realized not only do I look good in looser tops, I LOVE them! And I discovered the opposite to be true for bottoms. I always favored baggier jeans and pants. In fact, I thought skinny anything was out of the picture do to my legs. Let me tell you, when I finally tried skinny jeans, it changed my life for the better. Dramatic, I know. But, back to shorts and summer outfits...

Shirt: Anthropologie
Shorts: Old Navy
Shoes: Target
Bag: Jo Totes (It's a camera bag!)

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