Tuesday, November 4, 2014

October at Our House

Another whirlwind month -- wrapped up with just a few cute kidisms.

L {while having dinner at church}: "Dad, do you know everybody in this room?"
Brett: "No, not everyone."
L: "Well, do you know anybody?"
Ah, yes, the all or nothing thinking of a child.

M: "Hey, Mom, I'm supposed to tell you that we're supposed to check my head for lice!"
Well, that officially tops the list of things I do not want to hear during dinner.

L: "I see both of my soccer coaches."
Me: "Yeah? They spend all morning here."
L: "I think they sleep here, too."
You never know, right?

L {at Sam's Club}: "I saw a green lemon!"
Yes, and they're called limes.

M: "Were there cars when you were kids?"
Brett: "Yes, we had what's called a station wagon."
M: "Is that like a train?"
Why does it feel like we keep having this same conversation, just in different variations?

M: "I think I know why it's called October, November, and December. It's starting to get colder and we say, 'brrrr.'"
Makes sense to me.

L: "Crabs can make sculptures."
Me: "Oh, yeah? Like what?"
L: "All sorts of stuff. Pirates, dinosaurs, skeletons, ... maybe even a dump truck."
See, this is why I prefer conversing with kids over talking with adults most any day.

L: "2 +2 = 4 and 1 + 1 = 2 and 0 + 0 = 0. Well, actually, banana + banana = banana."
As I was nearly dying from the startling realization that he had learned addition at preschool (!), he threw in an extra dose of cuteness just to make me love him that much more.

L: "Does dehydrated start with 'D'?"
I don't even know how to reply to this. 

M {said while putting a rubber band around her ankles}: "This will help me waddle like a penguin better."
You betcha.

M: "I'm fluent in dog. Woof, woof, woof."

{After bedtime at our house.}
Me: "Do you want me to tuck you back in?"
L: "Well, sometimes I just need to play."
I hear you, Little Dude.

L: "I woke up after my sister but before you. You woke up last. I guess you were the tiredest. I guess you're always the tiredest."
This makes me sad because it is so honest.

{Our Family Halloween Costume ~ 2014}

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Boo to You: Year #5

Even though I am slow to get stuff posted here, I am still doing those things that have some of you fooled into believing I am a really, really awesome mom. (Okay, for clarification, I am an awesome mom, just maybe not as awesome as you think. This is really not all that complicated, I promise.) So, here goes: Year 5 of the neighborhood "Boo Bags." (Wait, have I really been blogging for that long? Very nearly! Time flies, as they say.)

{Assorted Goodies for One "Boo Bag"}

This year, I didn't worry at all if the "Boo Bags" (containers) held the same contents or even if the "Boo Bags" themselves looked identical. (See, I'm learning to let go of some of the small stuff!) One was a cute Frankenstein takeout container that I found on clearance and set aside last year, and the other was the first thing I could find on hand at home -- a Scooby Doo Happy Meal bucket from some point when the grandparents babysat last October, apparently.) And it's okay. I finally realized that nobody in the neighborhood is comparing notes, here. So don't stress over that!

Also, don't feel like you need to spend a lot of money. These were for sure under $5 each since I put stuff away after last Halloween, but even if you're going out and getting things right now after reading this, it can be super affordable. This year, I had two Halloween dog bandannas to give away, so naturally we selected houses that I knew had little doggies. That was my only criteria, really.

{One Finished "Boo Bag"}

{Another Finished "Boo Bag"}
Besides the doggie bandannas and assorted goodies (like notepads, orange or black votive candles, non-scary Halloween gel clings -- no food this year), I also enclosed the following:
  • We've Been Boo'd Sign (printed on orange construction paper -- although after the fact, I realized that white would have made more sense for the ghost design) -- 3 of these (one for the recipient of our "Boo Bag" and two more for them to pass along.
  • Poem/Directions -- again, 3 sets, including 2 to pass along.
Then, Logan and I passed these out while his big sissy was at school. (Thankfully, she didn't take major issue with this.) He was very enthusiastic with his help! This was about two weeks ago, and Mia insists that she has seen one of the neighborhood dogs sporting one of the "Boo Bag" bandannas. I honestly am not sure if this is true since I didn't see it myself, but how fun if that's the case. Have a safe and happy Halloween, everyone!

P.S. If you're interested, here is what we did for our "Boo Bags" in years past:

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Creative Re-branding

The longer I work my business, the more I realize the importance of what to say -- or more precisely, how to say it. It turns out that the way that something is presented to someone can truly influence how they feel about it. Case it point: dinner with two sorta picky eaters...

We have recently discovered that they LOVE edamame. If you're saying, "eda-what?" I'm right there with you. I thought that this was just some creative re-branding for "lima beans," which is what these babies seem to resemble quite closely. Then I wondered why they taste different from the way I remembered. (And that was not fondly, in case you're wondering.) Why would my kids LOVE something that I hated as a kid?

A quick web search had me realizing that edamame is an entirely different bean: soy. The weird thing is that the kids aren't normally big bean eaters, but they really, really LOVE them some edamame -- or "eda-beans!" as they shriek excitedly when they see these on the table. (No, really, you can't make this stuff up. My kids go nuts for baby soy beans.)

{Edamame: It's What's for Dinner!}

My point? If I called these what they are -- immature soy beans -- my children would almost certainly turn up their noses and refuse to eat them. Admittedly, even I find that a bit gross-sounding. But when we call them "edamame" it sounds just exciting enough to be something that even the tiniest of food critics can get enthused about, without being over-the-top exotic and foreign (a.ka. "too weird to eat").

Translation: little people willingly devour second and third helpings of this stuff. Go, Mommy (and Daddy, because he was the one who nuked this particular bag 'o beans.) Creative re-branding = parenting win! Hats off to you, soybean marketing folks of the world.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

September at Our House

To anybody who may have been waiting expectantly for more content on this blog, I do apologize for my life getting kind of crazy (even by normal standards)... Anyway, there is some great stuff here that I think you will enjoy!

L {listening to the ducks quacking at the Mill Pond}: "They're saying, 'walnuts.'"
I don't know, but it's cute.

L {on the drive home, it started to sprinkle and quickly turned to hard rain}: "I think the little rain drops told the bigger ones to come!"
Seriously cute!

L: "Mom, are beavers real?"
Okay, this is one of those times when I answer the simple question and then ponder it for a while wondering what he was really asking...

L: "Are teeth the same as bones?"
Me: "Yeah."
L: "So, some of our bones are showing?"
Well, sure, but I never really thought about it.

M: "When do we eat?"
L: "I want to eat Mama."
Me: "What do you mean?"
L: "As meat."
Me: "I'm not meat."
L: "Well, you are made of meat."
Me: "Okay, but we don't eat people."
Yeah, not gonna lie. I never expected to have to tell the children about my anti-cannibalism policy for our household, but there it is.

M: "I wish I could just snap my fingers like in Mary Poppins and my room would be clean... except I don't know how to snap... and it wouldn't work, anyway!"
You and me both, sister! 

Mommyism: "You shouldn't be riding a bike while wearing roller skates."
Another one of those things I never thought I would need to say...

M {windy outside}: "My dress is like a parachute."
Oh, see, that's just clever.

M {during dinner}: "Where do butterflies go when it rains?"
L: "Maybe a bird opens its mouth and 'atens' it and then it stays dry forever."
Kept my mouth shut here, waiting to hear what else he thought, but this seemed to be the end of that particular conversation.

L {during dinner}: "Mommy is the boringest!"
M {quite upset}: "No she's not!"
Cracked me up how vehement she was. Just depends on the day, I suppose.

L {looking at his drink package with a soccer player on it}: "I've never had a black person on this before."
Me: "What?!" {Okay, kind of concerned here!)
L: "Usually they're red or blue..." {Huh?} "But his jersey is black."
Me: "Oh!" {Relief...}

L: "I made up a song. It's called, I Made Up a Song." {proceeds to sing many, many verses, all the same: "I made up a song" -- all performed in a high-pitched sing-song voice}

This doesn't get old.... A little sarcasm for you, folks!

After discovering him pouring Elmer's glue on his monster truck track and then adhering vehicles.
Me: "What are you doing?!"
L: "I wanted them to be sticky and stuff."

Little boys and sticky situations... They just sort of go together.

L: "Ugh! You always ask me to do stuff!" {said to Brett after he asked him to use the bathroom before bed}
The injustice of it all!

L {while pulling into a parking spot at Walmart}: "Hey, there's seagulls in the road. That is not safe for them!"
Me: "Don't worry about them. They'll fly away if a car comes."
L: "I think they are looking for trash."

Monday, September 1, 2014

Our House in August

Here they are -- the kids' quotes from August -- the things that made me scratch my head, laugh out loud (and occasionally into my hand), and wonder where do they come up with this stuff, anyway?

L {while riding in the van}: "Someone honk-ded their tooty horn."
Keep reading for more education on the dual definition of the word "toot."

M: "Are there cookies that haven't been invented yet?"

M {explaining to her brother why they should pick up toys}: "Mama likes it when we do this, so let's keep doing it!"
Why can't this type of conversation (and subsequent cleaning frenzy) take place more often around here?

L: "Hey!" {after she had pulled his ball cap off his head}
M {putting it back on his head}: "If you wear it backwards, you look cool."
I wonder where she heard that?

M: "If you see me stare, I'm looking at air. Got it?"
Um, okay. If you say so.

M: "I don't like it when people ask me questions out loud."
I can't say for sure but maybe I questioned why she was staring into space -- or air. Duly noted. Next time, I shall use my powers of telepathy.

L: "Look at those flat trees!"
He noticed the vines growing up the sides of a brick building at MSU, which did, in fact, look exactly like a flat tree. And I never would have noticed.

M: "Mom, the dog smells like graham crackers."
Is it bad that I looked around for evidence that a certain little girl had been feeding her graham crackers?

M {while eating mixed nuts}: "Where do almonds come from?"
L: "Cactuses!"
Honestly, this is one of those times when it's just simpler -- and funnier -- to keep my mouth shut.

M {crying}: "I want to stay little forever!"
Me: "What do you mean?"
M: "I want to stay a kid forever, but I can't!"
I so LOVE that she feels this way. Gonna have to remember it when she's about fourteen.

L: "The tub is still drooling." 
On closer inspection, he is correct. The faucet is still running.

M: "This is how you speak lion, 'ROAR, ROAR!'"
L: "Well, how do you speak jaguar?"
M {quieter}: "'Rawr, rawr.'"
Couldn't have explained it better myself.

L: "There's two kinds of toot. Toot is from a whistle and toot is from a bottom."
Oh, yes, he is such a BOY.

M: "When I'm bored, you can just tell me to do my homework."
If you say so...

L {popping into our bedroom before 7:00 AM, fully dressed -- in an interesting plaid combination}: "Hey, guys, did you know today is my birthday?!"
You don't say? I guess he figured out that we already knew that when the coveted two-wheel "big kid" scooter was waiting for him downstairs.

{Mad for Plaid and No Stopping Me Now!}

Monday, August 11, 2014

Painting with Magnets

This was a project that Logan did a few weeks ago at the library with Mrs. D., and I am so in love with the cleverness of it! If you have followed my blog for any amount of time, you probably know that I love kids' painting projects, and we have done many, many, many of them, but this was completely new to me. I love that it mixes art and science, too!


  • round metal cake pan/pie plate
  • white paper (card stock works well)
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • magnet
  • paper clips
  • paint (tempera works well)

  1. If planning to make more than one of these, you will want to first make a round template for tracing. Place some paper inside your cake pan/pie tin and draw around the inside. Cut out this circle and use it for tracing all your other paper circles. Cut them out.
  2. Place a paper circle inside of your cake pan or pie tin.
  3. Add some paper clips (Mrs. D. had everyone use two large, plain, metal clips).
  4. Next, pour in a little bit of paint. Mrs. D. let each child select two colors. Logan chose yellow and blue.
  5. Give your child a magnet (preferably one that is not small enough to be swallowed! Ours were wand-style and were perfect for this.) and show him how to move it around on the bottom of the cake pan or pie tin. (You might need to help hold the pan, too.) This will move the paper clips around. Tell him to move the clips into the paint and then spread them all over the paper, using the magnet. (Help as needed, and make sure that magnets are nowhere near his mouth.) Talk about the process. What do you notice happens? Logan saw that the two colors mixed together to make green.
  6. Once the painting is complete, allow it to dry before displaying.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Tool Box Stamping

Do you ever find yourself so far behind that you don't even know where to begin? That's how I feel about blogging. I know I want to, but... It's just so long since I have done these things that I wanted to write about. Anyway, hope they make some sort of sense, because I felt it was worth sharing, once upon a time. This project was something that I found for our Sunday school kids to do as a wind-up for our VBS, which took place ages ago, right after school got out in June! (Don't even get me started on how fast this summer has flown by. I swore that school seemed like it was NEVER going to end, and then once it did... Oh, boy!)

So, I found the inspiration for this craft here. The main difference is that she has used paint and I wanted something less messy for our Sunday school kids (for reasons I am sure you understand). My solution? Stamp pads. We have plenty in our resources at church, so I had my two kiddos test it out at home with assorted nuts, bolts, screws, and nails, and it worked splendidly.

{Finished Tool Box Prints}


  • paper (we used white card stock)
  • stamp pads in assorted colors
  • various nuts, bolts, screws, nails (careful about ages of children and whether or not you allow sharp points)
  • paper trimmer/scissors (optional, for cutting paper smaller)
  • something to clean up with: damp towel/paper towels/baby wipes 

  1. I used a paper trimmer to cut our 8 1/2" x 11" card stock into quarters, making the pieces about postcard size. This is not necessary.
  2. Set out paper, assorted tool box items, and stamp pads.
  3. Have kids press nuts, bolts, screws, or nails (flat side recommended, although Mia did discover that the threading on a screw makes an interesting design if you twist it over the paper) onto a stamp pad and then onto paper to make a print. Repeat as desired.
  4. Allow ink to dry completely before displaying your projects. These would make fun greeting cards or wrapping paper, should you choose to stamp them on say, a roll of Kraft paper (which can be found at Dollar Tree).