Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Our littlest Angel

Definition of an Angel:

1.  a celestial attendant of God

2. a person having qualities generally attributed to an angel, as beauty, purity, or kindliness.

 I think the family would all agree when I say that Nora is our littlest angel. She is all love, smiles, beauty, and cheerfulness (at least to her family). If any one of us ever needs some cheering up, all we have to do is pick up Nora and we're cured. 



Nora does this amazingly cute thing with her nose about 50 million times a day. If you click on the picture below and to the left, you can probably see what I'm talking about. She wrinkles up and scrunches her nose and and it makes you want to laugh out loud and give her a thousand kisses!


Monday, February 25, 2013

Learning


 About month and a half ago I was asked to be the Primary president for our ward (working with children and teachers in church). All the learning that I've had to do has taken quite a bit of time; there have been lots of phone calls and meetings etc and the kids and Scott have been amazingly supportive. Here's a note Charlie gave to me, to give to Nora: It says, "Dear Nora, I will woch (watch) you wen (when) mom neas (needs) me to woch you. xoxo From Charles. He loves to watch Nora and will often take her from me (though I still have a hard time sharing) and get her toys out and play with her in her room. Thanks Charles!


 My cousin Rachel gave Charles a few Kids National Geographic magazines for Christmas this past year. He loves them! Which shouldn't have come as a surprise considering he loves learning facts, animals, nature and all things scientific.  So now whenever I go to the library, I always stop by the section where they are selling off old material for a quarter and if they have some I buy them for Char. Isn't this crystal cave amazing? Scott and I used to watch Smallville during the beginning seasons and Clark Kent had a fortress that looked like this.


The kids have also discovered and love Bill Nye the science guy. I've gotta admit that I really like him too. He is so entertaining and the stuff you learn in those movies is so interesting! Our library has a good selection to choose from. I love the library!




I loved reading our 8 year old Elisabeth's "I have a dream..."  class assignment. Here are some of the things she wrote for her 'dream for the world': No garbage on the ground, no killing animals. No bad guys. Nobody is poor. Everybody is friendly and kind and school is only 3 hours. :). I think she's got her priorities in order.
This is Nora's favorite spot in the house: in the living room with the books. Here's a before and after shot: before Nora unloads the books and after. She does this within a matter of seconds. I stack and re-stack those books at least 5 times a day. She's gonna be a smart girl with her love of books at such a young age!


Friday, February 22, 2013

Valentine's Day

Here are pictures from our Valentine's Day. Scott and I wrote our traditional love letters to each other and to each of the children and some of the kids wrote/drew valentine's for us as well(they also made these construction paper envelopes to hold their family valentine's)

We ate our traditional pink pancakes for breakfast...we didn't have enough time (or energy :)) to do the heart shaped ones this time around. Maybe next year :).

And the traditional heart shaped pizzas for dinner. I made the whole wheat and spelt pizza dough that is my families favorite. It was actually pretty easy to roll out into the heart shape. We made one cheese and one pepperoni.

 And we had Izze drinks.




 This is a love-message-in-a-bottle that I put together for Scott. Elder Scott's talk about the hole punched notes he gave his wife and a picture I saw on pinterest of recees peanut butter cups with words written on the bottom was my inspiration.





 
 I numbered and wrote a word on each pb cup. He tried to see how fast he could get them in order to read his love message :).
We don't usually do gifts but Scott got me some foot spa items and an outlet candle warmer (I bought one last year and the literal day I bought it, it broke when one of our children tried to unplug it themselves with a little too much force in the wrong direction.). Thanks Honey!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Annabelle's Princess and the Popstar Birthday Party

I'll kind of be skipping around in time over the next few posts. Family have requested pix of Annabelle's party and so even though it was after Valentine's Day, I'm going to oblige my loving family and do Annabelle's birthday post and then we'll do a Valentine's post. And who am I kidding, I wanted to do Annabelle's birthday post first as well. I had so much fun prepping for the party!






Annabelle turned 5 on Saturday and had her first friend party. She decided to have a Princess and the Popstar party which I didn't love but went along with anyway. Above are the invitations. We found a picture she liked on the internet, saved it to my zip drive, typed up an invitation and then took the zip drive to the UPS store and had them put four on a page with the picture on the front and the party information on the back; the red grocery bag ties are just there to block our address :). It was a pretty inexpensive and easy way to get 12 invitations that match the party theme. I made them a couple of weeks before we handed them out because I was excited to get started :).

Annabelle and Jane helped me bake the cakes. My kitchen always looks disastrous when I make cakes.



 We used a barbie skirt cake pan (I've used it 4 times now with the girls so it's worth the $10 or so I paid for it) and then I also made a 9 inch cake to go under the skirt cake because I knew it wouldn't be tall enough on it's own to fit Annabelle's Popstar barbie. I did have to use a knife and cut off just a little around the edges of the 9 inch cake once I placed the skirt cake on top.
 The skirt used 2 cake boxes and then I made 1 more cake box for the 9 inch cake and the extra batter we used to make mini cupcakes. So a total of 3 cakes. I had to make a tiny cut on the Popstars' actual dress in order to get it off her so that I could stick her legs into the cake. Then I used her fabric skirt as a guide on how to decorate the cake.
 Scott helped me decorate the house with crate paper(is that what it's called?).


The door sign:




 When the girls started arriving, we had them sit at the table and color a princess and the popstar coloring page while we waited for the others to arrive.


 After about 10 minutes of coloring we moved onto decorating their own tiaras.
 Pretty princesses!
 Then we played 'pin the guitar on the princess'. This was another project I made at the UPS store. I found a picture on the internet and had them blow it up and put it on two 11x17 sheets of paper and then laminate it. That way it cost $5...if you had them make it regular poster size it would've been $15 which was more than I was willing to spend on the birthday game.


 We opened presents. To make it a little more fun for everyone involved, we had all the girls sit in a circle around Annabelle and then they passed around this soft cupcake I bought from the dollar store while we played music from the movie 'princess and the popstar' and if the music stopped on them, they would give their gift to Annabelle...like hot potato.
 Annabelle got several new barbies, one of which was from the movie, plus the movie and a princess and the popstar house with two figures and furniture etc. So the girls brought those toys downstairs, we turned on Princess and the Popstar, and they watched and played for about 20 minutes while Scott and I cleaned up the gift room, rolled out pizzas and got the table ready for the girls.We had home-made whole grain pizza and fresh strawberries for lunch and then cake and ice cream for dessert. Making the pizza was no big deal at all because I'd planned far enough ahead that the previous two weeks before the party when I made pizza for the family I froze the extra two doughs that each batch makes so we had a total of four frozen doughs that I pulled out and stuck in the fridge the day before the party. So then it really was just a matter of rolling out the dough and covering it with sauce and cheese.
 And of course, Kierah from Princess in the Popstar (she's the popstar) was the cake.



 And even though we've done this cake shape several times, we still weren't exactly sure how to cut the cake. But Scott did a great job!


 After cake there was about 10 minutes left until parents were to arrive (it was a 2 hour party which was just right) so the girls went back downstairs to play and watch the movie. As they left, Annabelle gave each girl their party favor: sunglasses with stars in the corners (sunglasses came in a pack of 12 for $2 and then we added the star stickers in the corners), a scented lip gloss, and an Izze drink (sparkling 100% juice drink and a great alternative to soda!). The girls also each took a balloon home and of course their tiaras and they would have taken their pictures they colored but I forgot to give them back :).


 And here are Annabelle and Jane playing with the new Princess and the popstar house...it's already provided hours, and hours of fun!

 And her new Tori barbie from Gran. Oh and the Tori barbie and her Keirah barbie sing songs if you press their necklace and the stairs on the house light up and play music when you step on them! Another reason why I encourage the girls to play with it downstairs :). Otherwise Mom will be singing, "Princesses wanna have fun, oh princesses wanna have fun!!" all day long.

 Happy Birthday Annabelle!!! We sure love you and don't want you to go to school next year! We want you to stay five forever, never grow up and never leave! :) j/k, kind of. I can't believe I'll have more kids in school next year than I have at home!