Friday, September 27, 2013

Girl Time

Recently, my best girls and I had a girl's weekend!  It was celebrating Mimi's new job, Mama's birthday, and my sixth month of pregnancy. :)  It was a perfect weekend!  We had a spa day and went out to a perfect girly dinner.  These girls are my soul sisters.  And they are my favorite girls in the whole wide world, over the age of 3.  ;)
Here are Mimi and I, with our straight-out-of-the-steam-room hair.  Best steam room ever...eucalyptus infused!

All the girls, bathroom pic!  :)

This is us saying, "Yes, we wear our robes to lunch at the spa!"

We laughed at how they discouraged consumption of caffeine, alcohol, carbs, and dessert.  Not outwardly, but more subliminally.  The rolls were the size of a quarter of a roll.  The "cookies" were the size of the crispy crackers in a bag of Chex mix.  We were cracking up at what the waitress described as "SO MUCH DESSERT!" (It all fit on a tiny cookie tray).  So funny.

After our 19th cup of tea that day.  Drinking tea just seems like the right thing to do there!

Ready for dinner!
My little chickie wouldn't be left of a girls pic. :)

Thank you for sharing such a fun weekend with me!  You are perfect company, and perfect biffles. Xoxo

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Today was Reilly's first day of pre school.  We have all been preparing and excited for weeks.  Yesterday, Reilly woke up jumping up and down saying "TOMORROW I GET TO GO TO PRE SCHOOL!!".  This morning, she woke up teary and tired and said, "I don't want to go to school, I will miss you so much Mommy."  This is exactly how I've been feeling for weeks.

So excited for her to make new friends, socialize in a brand new setting, learn things she has never learned, see things she has never seen, be challenged, have fun, problem-solve on her own.  But so nervous for her to be on her "own", without me there.  I've been there every minute, every day.  She has hardly ever been apart from me.  But we knew she was ready.  And she is such an amazing little soul - I felt in my heart that this was the time for her to start shining her little light in the world.  Time for her to glow, and grow.

Some days you pray, and you know what the answer is.  Sometimes you wonder when the answer will come.  Some days you are confused about what God is saying to you.  And then, there are days like today.  Days when God is showing you the answer around every corner, covering you in the clarity of His presence.  It was like every worry I had in my heart (as I cried last night, packing her snack and backpack, labeling her water bottle...), was completely erased today.  Each silent prayer that I prayed, was answered not only once, but over and over again.

The day started out on a bad note, besides the few tears, Mama's phone wouldn't turn on.  Just great.  It had been sitting in water last night on the counter (I hadn't noticed until late, and put it in rice right away), and still wasn't dry this morning.  That meant that I had to send her school, without any phone.  There went my comfort of "if there is a problem, they will just call me, I'll come a second...".  Just unneeded stress.

But we got over it and by the time we left, everyone was smiling and excited.  We filled Reilly's room with balloons, and Daddy's car as well.  Balloons just make this girl so excited!  (This morning, she briefly thought the balloons meant it was her birthday, and asked, "Am I four, Mama?") She knew it was a day to celebrate with all the balloons everywhere. :)  The few hours passed quickly as I ran to the food store with my littlest sunshine, and ran home to make everyone lunch.  Hubby called me and we had a little pep talk together.  Many friends and family texted to encourage us (mainly Reilly and me, ha), which meant so much.  We were surrounded by so much love on this exciting day.

I was positively giddy on the way to pick her up.  I knew Reagan missed her, I could tell how to ran around the house, seemingly looking for someone to chase. :)  I practically ran to the door.  When her teacher saw me and called for Reilly's dismissal, she said, "I just have to tell you, Reilly does not want to come home!  We had a really hard time getting her to come to closing circle!"  That made me happier than you can imagine.  She loved it.  She adjusted.  She had so much fun. She thrived.

When she saw me, she ran as fast as she could and Reagan screamed with excitement.  She started talking a mile a minute about everything she did and the new friends she made.  She could barely take a breath.  "I had so much fun!  I met Jenna!  Look, that's Jenna!  She's four. We did arts and crafts, and play doh, and read books!  I went on the potty.  I missed you a little, but I wasn't sad Mommy!  Can I have some more of my apples?  I didn't finish them because I was full. Some other kids had yummy snacks!  Can I have cheese and pretzels one day?  I think someone had an ice pop! Oh MAN!  I forgot to play hide and seek!"

As I was getting her in the car (yes, that was on the walk to the car), as I was silently thanking God over and over, I told her I was SO happy.  To which she said, "Are you so blessed, Mama?"

Yes, Reilly.  I am so blessed.  Hi, God. Thank you for listening.  I know You heard me.  I hear You, too.

I took the girls to a little surprise, and we went to the coffee shop for a treat and to have lunch.  I got a latte (I felt like a deserved a treat as well), and Reilly got a piece of crumb cake and a hot chocolate.  She about died when she heard me order the hot chocolate.  She saw the man making it and said, "Is that cream for ME?!  THANK YOU SO MUCH!" She got it in a to-go cup, and said, "This is like coffee!!" as she held it with both hands.  She chose the couches to sit on and picked out books she wanted me to read them.  She jumped up half way through and spun around, and said, "I had the BEST day at school!"  We sat down and said prayers, thanking God for her wonderful first day.

As we were leaving, two ladies stopped me who looked to be in their forties.  One said, "Hi, I just have to tell you, your girls are adorable."  I thanked her, and she went on to ask me if I was expecting another.  Her friend teased her and said, "Of COURSE she is!  What was your plan if she said no?!"   Then she said that it may be crazy, but it is the most fun ever having them so close.  She said she had 4 under the age of 7, and when she found out she was pregnant with her fourth, her third was only 3 months old.  She said no matter how crazy it feels at times, it's worth it when they are older and it's amazing.  I couldn't help but smile, as God send another messenger of positivity my way on this day.  I told them how it was Reilly's first day of pre school and they gushed over her and made her feel so special.

After we got home, there was an email from Hubby saying that he and Reilly prayed on the car ride to school, and that all of their prayers were answered today.

Today was a big first for our family. But I am walking away from today with a better outlook.  I will not worry on our next "first", or at least I'll try not to.  :)  I will remember the message I heard today over and over:  Do not worry.  I am with her.  Just relax and be thankful.  You are blessed, you are blessed, you are blessed.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Apple Picking!

Since I moved here from Long Island, I have been searching for a place to go apple picking.  I figured - we live in the country now!  Apple picking must be abundant!  See, we grew up apple picking at the farms out east on Long Island, and Hubby and I would go every year in college, too.  It's one of my favorite things to do.  I love love fresh apples.  But I also love cider, cider donuts, and candy apples!  The whole thing just my favorite. 

So you can imagine my dismay when there was NOWHERE to go apple picking here in the country closer than about 1.5-2 hours away.  I mean, we travel an hour to the mall, but 2 hours to pick apples?  When we have farms down the road?  It just didn't make sense to me!  So we found a pumpkin farm that had barrels of fresh apples that THEY picked (it was the best we could do), and that was good for a few years.

But now we found an apple orchard that just opened this year!  I am still trying to figure out why there aren't more orchards, maybe they are hard to grow in our climate?  Either way, we took a trip right away to check it out!

This little face that Reagan makes is her new laughing face.  Hilarious.

A rare picture of me with my little girlies!  I'm usually the one snapping, so I was so happy to get some with my smiley girls. :)

I am kind of obsessed with the following two pictures.  In the first one, Reilly is smiling and Reagan could NOT be making a more serious face, staring in to the distance.  The next picture, not 2 seconds later, Reagan looks like she sees Santa out of nowhere, and then Reilly looks like she wants to go to sleep.

I have no idea what cause this hilariousness, but these pics crack me up.

Reagan was so excited about picking her first apple!

Reilly was in charge of the bag. :)


Now, like I said, I've been apple picking a lot.  But I've never been to a place that looked like was so odd!  The tree were in these straight thin lines, that looked like a winery!  I thought maybe it was because the trees were young?  But the apples were still giant, so it was great!

Reagan almost looks like she's walking heel-toe! 

But she was still waddling. :) My favorite.

My littlest chicken. I can't express what a love this little girl is.  She is so snuggly, an so sweet.  Her personality is just as sweet as that little face.

(Hi 28 week baby!)
These girls just love an open field.  They'd never last living in a crowded city!

Oh, just some apple-grapes. :)

Here is our little pumpkin trying to smile for the camera while chewing an apple!  HA. Love her face.  And she loves her Dada.

Such a fun day! Yay for apples in PA!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fall Things

 Even though autumn means Daddy going back to school, which makes everyone sad around here, fall activities really are so much fun.  Once the reality of "back to school" sets in, and we focus on being thankful that we have summers together, we really love all things autumn as a family!

Starting with...the Dunkin pumpkin muffin.  Okay, maybe this is just a Mommy thing and not a whole family thing, but I am obsessed enough for all of us.  I may have mentioned this before, but I am convinced that God made this baby arrive in December this time so that I would be in my glorious third trimester for pumpkin muffin season at Dunkin.  I mean, MONTHS of guilt-free muffin eating?  If that's not a blessing  straight from the Lord.
 And EVERY year, I attempt at making my own "Dunkin" pumpkin muffin.  And fail.  I mean, they're good...they're might even say delicious.  But they are sub-par in my mind because they never reach the Dunkin gloriousness.  Sigh.  I'll try again next year...

I'll tell you who loved these muffins...Reagan Kate.  She swiped one and came waltzing into the living room holding it with both hands like she had found gold on the kitchen counter.  Later, I caught her trying again...little stinker. ;)


This is really just a recent project we crafted, but it looks so fall-y to me with the decorations and things, so I'm throwing it in here.  I saw something similar at a friend's house, and fell in love with it!  So we (Hubby) made our own. :)
 I wanted a way to display current pictures that was a little more stylish or "pretty" than a cork board, but not as permanent as picture frames.

I love how the chicken wire looks with the barn wood.  Very us. :)  I also used random wood stain that we had in the basement and stained plain clothes pins to make them a little prettier also.

I had these leaves I made last year (with just paper and water color) and couldn't figure out where I wanted them to live in our new house.  Then I saw our new picture display and thought I would make it look like they "fell"! :)

Reilly is obsessed with pumpkins.  All things pumpkins.  Pumpkin books.  Pumpkin picking.  Pumpkin patches. Little ones, big ones.  Pumpkin carving, pumpkin painting.  She even made it her business to teach Reagan to say "pumpkin", and was SO proud when she did it. So we made our earliest trip ever to the pumpkin patch, and will be going again in October when it's a bit more appropriate. :)  But she was so excited to have pumpkins in the house, and we are kind of inherently against buying pumpkins at the grocery store.  So we bough some mini pumpkins, and some pumpkins just for painting.

While Reagan naps, we usually have some special "big girl" activity that we do each day that Reagan is too little to participate in.  This keeps messes (and whining) to a minimum, and allows Reilly to feel special and have some nice Mommy-Reilly time doing "grown up" things.  Sometimes we paint, cut with her scissors, bake or cook, or do another more intricate craft.

This day, we pumpkin painted. :)  We used regular acrylic paints that I always paint my signs with, and then covered them with "pixie dust" (diamond glitter) when the paint was still wet.

 You can't even truly appreciate how pretty these looked with the glitter on them!  They are so shimmery and sparkly in person.  The perfect princess pumpkin, in our opinion. :)

Yay Fall!  Stay forever. Let winter never come.  Okay fine, you can come for a mont
h but then leave again.