Saturday, April 30, 2016

Water sliding at the Valley Y

So glad I grabbed their suits last minute when we were headed to Brianna's volleyball game in the Valley....I didn't realize the big slide would be open and they would have the time of their lives going down it a million times!

 I got the cutest video of Bennett yelling, "I don't need your help but THANK YOU!"

" show me your muscles!"

Friday, April 29, 2016

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Nap when the baby naps! Or...just be lazy

I really should get up and DO something. Because there are a million somethings to be done.
But the older 3 are at school, the toddler is asleep, it's silent in my usually noisy home....and I just wanna stay right here doing nothing but relax and stare at her.
Well, and play on my phone of course:)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Morning swim

The twins plus a friend played while I did laps.
And apparently Bennett is working on his gang signs.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

2 yr old discovers wrinkles

Charity discovered the consequence of spending too long in a warm bath...wrinkly hands! And she was NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT! She cried and asked me to get it off her. I explained it would go away soon when she dried off and got in jammies. She still wasn't happy and kept trying to wipe the wrinkles off.

Big girl doing big girl homework!

A report on an endangered animal of her choice...she picked Snow Leopards. Then used her tablet and asked Google to tell her all about Snow Leopards, including how to draw them. It was so cute. One of those omywordmybabyisgrowingup moments.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Oh kale yeah!

Planted kale from seed LAST some great leaves from it in the Fall...left it out all winter...spring hits and BOOM! more kale! Zero effort from me!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Day of rest?

My sundays are pretty busy, with meetings and church responsibilities....I love it and believe whole heartedly I'm doing what God wants me to do...but at the same time, I miss lounging around with these goofy faces Sunday mornings.
They're my loves.
At least Brian texts me pics so I know what I'm missing ;/
Where much is given, much is required, eh? Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of Heaven:)


Saturday, April 23, 2016


A couple months ago - around Brianna's 8th birthday, I realized she hadn't been to the doctor in....ever? Like since that time she put a rock up her nose. Or got her last round of immunizations before Kindergarten. And even then, they didn't do a checkup. Since our insurance covers an annual physical for everyone 100%, and Brianna had been ASKING to go to the doctor (I think she thought they give out prizes or something...or maybe she just wanted attention)... I went ahead and made an appt! With a PA, cuz the nearest Pediatrician is kinda far. And I don't have any more faith in a Ped vs PA for stuff like this. It was kinda ridiculous they couldn't get her in for 2 MONTHS.
Checkup went great- she's in the 75th percentile for height and weight. Eyesight, BP, and everything just perfect. I asked the PA to explain the importance of SLEEP to Brianna, since she likes to try and stay up too late:)
I'm so grateful for healthy children!!! What a blessing.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Gorgeous trails, sunny days

Been loving my morning runs on the trails behind the Y. They're super short cuz I've been a big slacker in the running dept,  but I'm grateful to be doing what I'm doing. 

The YELLOW wildflowers (and even the dandelions!!) are especially making my day.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

"My first recipe!! Send it to Nonny!!"

She was super stoked to "invent" a smoothie (smoothy, as she cutely spelled it) recipe and write it down.
Can't really go wrong with fruit+froyo in a blender...
Next time I'll show her how fun it is to add GREEN stuff to the recipe :)

Monday, April 18, 2016

sdrawkcab gnitirw ttenneB

Is this normal or do I need to be worried?!
His preschool teacher says it's common enough...but trippy! Letters AND words AND the sentence backwards!!

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Happy BIRTHDAY Papa!!

He'll come from his trip to find this on his garage! Plus some hanging fushia plants, balloons on his fence, and 2 boxes of organic Figgies :)

Saturday, April 16, 2016

The best races

These are my absolute favorite types of races to do.  
I used to care about courses and accurate maps and good competition and blah blah blah.... 
Now I'm happiest when my kids get their faces painted and take pictures with Batman in a beautiful park on a gorgeous Spring Saturday morning. 

Bonus: they learned what Autism means and we had a good discussion about how to treat kids who act differently  (ie - the same as everyone else! With kindness!)

The only downside is that I'm super out of shape. My time was awful and I got beat by a pregnant girl. A very speedy pregnant girl, but still. It's embarrassing. I'm going to fix this!! [starting monday] :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2016


I just reallyreally adore her.
She's as sweet as can be and ridiculously fun to be around. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Now I love Fred Meyer even more!

I've seen this at other grocery stores in more enlightened areas of the country... but figured Spokane wasn't quite THERE yet.  But I guess we are, because our grocery store is now offering a free piece of fruit to kids instead of crap from the bakery! Yay! They behave so much better while shopping with me if they're munching on an apple or banana :)

Monday, April 11, 2016

Bouncy bed?

Inspired by Brian's tales from his childhood summer nights spent sleeping outside on his trampoline, the kids *jumped* at the first chance to do the same!
IMO - it's not quite warm enough at night to be doing this. But they insisted! So every pillow, blanket, and large stuffed animal was brought to their trampoline campout. 
And of course, Brian slept out their with him. Both for safety, and fun :)  They watched "Little Rascals" on his ipad before falling asleep. Then Courtney slept in til about 9am! Bennett transferred to his own bed inside at 5:30 or so. 
Honestly, I feel kinda lame I'm not out there with them. I totally would, but Charity is already such a finicky sleeper.... and I just treasure my sleep too much to risk losing a night of it!  Maybe next year? 

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Spring art from Brianna

I love it when she surprises us with her cute little art gifts. She's so creative and sweet!

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Aloha (goodbye!) dinner

Before mom, Dad, Lily and Mere left on their latest Hawaiian vacation, I wanted to throw a little goodbye party. The tropical theme is always fun, and I have a handy stash of decorations always ready to go! 
I wanted to do the pizza in the shape of the letters ALOHA, but ran out of time, so HI had to suffice :)  We had tiki torches lit outside and a little bonfire. 
I miss them when they're gone!! And not just because they help me with my kids :) 
They wanted us to join them on Oahu... but honestly I just wasn't interested.  A quick cost-benefit analysis demonstrates to me that it's not worth it. Maybe in a few years? Or maybe I can get away with just doing my style of vacations.... quick easy and fun!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Hard work pays off!

 THIS girl..... 
When she puts her mind to something, she's going to make it happen!
She's been wanting her own tablet. Bad. 
She discovered they can be as cheap as $49  (well, 50-something with tax, which she found really annoying.... me too, babe, me too).
Brianna has spent the past month doing jobs for Nonny, Papa, and her parents to earn all the money to buy this herself! 
She showed up at Shopko with her bright pink wallet, stuffed full of crumpled bills and heavy with coins.
The look of pride and joy on her face was priceless! 
And I was thrilled they offer a $5 insurance plan! Full replacement at Shopko for a year if anything at all happens to the tablet. Which is likely to happen, considering the ages of her siblings....

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Easiest way to deal with the piano practice battle...

Hiring the older cousin to come help!
Such a win-win....she makes a few bucks, gets valuable teaching experience, practices PATIENCE...Brianna does a full focused hour of practice (which she'll thank me for in 10 years or so)...and *I* do NOT have to lose an hour of my personal productivity time!:)

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Would you like a bath with those bubbles?!

Brianna learns to play Life!

It's hard work! Career choices, college debt, children, starter homes, lawsuits, parties, adoption, pay raise, job loss, retirement at millionaire mansion....
Lots for an 8 yr old to absorb! She loved it and it wiped her out mentally :)

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Spring Break Chore Charts

Ready to make this week a productive one!
Or at's evidence we tried.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Grateful for one hour printing and modern technology on birthdays

I neglected to get a card in the mail to my grandmother celebrating her 94th birthday.
I wasn't even on the ball enough to send anything for her with my parents who flew out to see her.
FORTUNATELY, Walgreens has one hour printing. And I know how to write a big sign, take a picture, and get my parents to pick up the photo at the Walgreens next to her home and bring it to her on the evening of her birthday. Including the photo collage of all her great grandchildren from her son Steve and Debbie.
BAM, creative thoughtful card.
Procrastinator style.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

*Updated* Smith Grandkids

Mom- which color theme do you like best?

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Sunny picnic with mom

Nothing like vegan enchiladas on a beach towel with your mama in the Spring sun!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Winfield Park Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Somebody's coloring is improving!

Kinda shocked at my son's sudden interest in actually putting effort into his artwork! He went from silly scribbling to this!

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Saturday morning adventures...

I was going to do a fun race I had been looking forward to, but Dad talked me into a ski trip instead. Honestly, I would've preferred to do the race...I mean, I've skiied a LOT this winter (like more than I have in the last 10 years combined maybe), and I haven't done many races lately. But there are a bunch of races coming up, and definitely not a bunch more ski days. I'd say today was our last...but I said that 2 weeks ago and was obviously wrong. But if it WAS our last, we went out with a great one! Clear skies, nice temps, decent snow, no crowds at all. And a crazy show at the annual "Pond Skim" where skiers/boarders go zooming across a big ice water pool. So basically a hypothermia party. Weirdos. Skilled weirdos. Very entertaining.
While we were playing in the snow, our children were dyeing eggs, then taken on a hiking adventure to Bowl & Pitcher at Riverside with mom, mere, and bobby! They had so much fun!!

Friday, March 25, 2016

Easter hair

If I had my way, I'd spend hours playing with my girls' hair... learning new styles, chatting with them, taking pictures...
But the reality is that I typically barely have time to do a quick ponytail.
However, friday mornings I'm forced to have a free period of time between when Brianna goes to piano and the gym opening. So- we used it to have some fun with sweet Courtney's 'do!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

filling 2000 eggs

It's that time again!
The Winfield Party annual Easter Egg Hunt.
That I'm in charge of.
Because no one else will do it.
So... I do it.
Kinda crazy.
But I'm glad I have a few friends to help!

Easter F.H.E.

We watched did Easter activity sheets, watched Easter veggie Tales (thank you Nonny!) and had Easter pancakes (their Easter candy gets chopped up and added to the pancake batter, which is full of healthier ingredients - it's our compromise ;)
We're ready for the holiday!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

He Lives!

We got to attend an amazing Easter celebration event on the South Hill put on by the Spokane Stake. They performed "Lamb of God" by Rob Gardner. Choir, soloists, readings, orchestra, and the incredible display of images and items from the Life of Christ pictured was top notch. Totally worth driving all the way out there and letting the kids stay up way too late. I love teaching my kids what Easter is really all about!

Easter @St. Matthews


"Seahawks dress" at Costco

I'm not sure if our local Costco did this on and blue official NFL logo on it...But my kids spotted it a mile away and shouted,  HAWKS!
This town/state is pretty obsessed over their foosball team!
And I'm pretty obsessed with Costco. They're always bringing in new items in the produce and natural/organic/superfood or whatever you wanna call it genre. Plus samples of course...the kids had madras lentils, salmon burgers, energy bars, brie, yogurt, crackers and tillamook cheddar for "lunch", ha!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Monday, March 21, 2016

Toddler QT

   She wouldn't take a nap this afternoon (slept in til 10:30am after being up too late last night), so we played! Coloring, BUBBLES, nails, dancing (she's got amazing moves), and using old eyeshadow for painting.  
Being two is pretty fun :)
I told her she's my best friend.
She looked up at me and said, "Ok, we can hug now!" and tackled me with a good one. Then said, "UggaMugga Mommy," (thanks Daniel Tiger), and kissed my face.
I kinda adore her and would really appreciate being able to keep her this way forever. Not too much to ask?

While I'm on the subject... she says really adorable things. Like when I said, "How are you doing baby girl?" She quickly retorted, "I not a baby. I a toddler. And I doing WELL."
She goes around singing (often songs from Sophia the 1st or Primary songs from Nursery). 
She loves to be tickled, tackled, wrestled, nursed, smooched, and totted around. 

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Saturday, March 19, 2016

my little egg peelers

Cute watching them help me take the shells off our hardboiled eggs :)

Lucky enough!

I felt pangs of FAILURE as St. Patrick's Day came and went this year. I didn't do all the fun activities/projects I had intended to. Not the silly leprechaun lying-to-your-children stuff... I don't roll that way.  But I had planned to do some cute photos, have all-green (healthy, not Lucky Charm crap) meals, and make some fun festive gifts for family/friends.  It didn't happen. We DID wear lots of green, decorate the house inside and out, and they did some St. Paddy's crafts at school/YMCA....but that was about it.
Oh well.  Story of my life... great intentions, imperfect follow-thru!

Friday, March 18, 2016

Parking skillz

Sometimes people take pictures of my van parked and text it to me with various commentary... I could choose to be offended, humbled, judged.. but I'm pretty sure they're just jealous, so I choose to be flattered.