Sunday, August 20, 2017

Kaylee, Caroline, and Kara Time

Just had to post some more pictures of these sweet girls playing together.

Cousin pals

Kara kills me every time with her sweet innocent face! 

Cousins are everything!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Making Summer Last!

Round 2 of this post! I got all the pictures uploaded the first time and they were super blurry so I decided just to forget it all and start over!

Ah! Preschool is looming on our horizon...looming isn't quite the word because Caroline is SO EXCITED about it. We have a paper chain that we made and she talks about it every day. When the day finally arrives I know that she is going to be a little ball of excitement.

When I left for Utah my mom was going to leave the Saturday of the wedding to go back home. Ben had the day off so he could take care of Caroline but my mom ended up getting when I got home she was still here. We were so glad that she got better and that we got to play a little before she left.

WE LOVE OUR BACKYARD. I really just want to shout it from the rooftops. We have a little porch that has a ceiling fan so it's actually pleasant to sit out and watch Caroline play. Plus we get some gorgeous sunset views. WE LOVE OUR BACKYARD.

We went up to my grandparents and fixed their ipad and did some crafts. Nothing is better than their front porch swing, the big driveway, or the fun areas to scooter in. So happy that we were able to go down and spend the night. Caroline is still talking about our sleepover that we had at their house.


We've had some awesome rainy days, thunderstorms, and lightening shows (lighting up our house at night!) which have made outdoorsy things kind of tricky. But we had a morning of sunshine so we hit the park!

This girl! She wanted to swing but there were huge puddles under the big swings...she definitely too small for these now!

We went to the Whitehouse Splash pad and had a grand time. Totally confused by their "no beverages" policy which includes bottles of a water bottle with ice that I prepped at our house. I looked at the guy like he had five heads and just brought my water bottle in. It's 97 degrees in Texas dude and obviously you've never walked a toddler from the edge of the parking lot to the splash pad. Ben and I were joking about what beverages are formula is a bottle? breast milk...or would you have to pump and leave it at the gate? Cannot stop laughing about that silly rule...and how there were people with coolers of food and drinks. Apparently he's a stickler for the rules but the other people that work at the splash pad don't care...and they shouldn't! Hahaha!

We tried out the Twisted Root Burger Co. and it was such a fun place. Caroline was not a fan of their nuggets so Ben went up to get her a side of bacon (Caroline LOVES bacon) and they gave him an entire basket of bacon for free. Still can't stop laughing about that.

We also stopped by Gymboree to just look and Caroline fell in love with these shoes...I mean I fell in love with them too...and I'm sure Ben did as well ;). We did just as grandma said and got her a cute outfit for school too. She is tickled with her new kicks.

Tammy, Kaylee, and Kara came to visit and the girls just played and played. Next time we will totally leave the house but it was impossible to stop them from playing. Also, Kaylee organized all of the playroom before she left and she collected all the dollhouses pieces which have been all over the place for EVER...even before we moved. Bless her!

Loving our playgroup and making new friends! We went to a pancake breakfast get together and Caroline just loved playing and couldn't be stopped to take a picture...story of my life nowadays...too busy for pictures :)

The most exciting thing THIS week was Caroline getting a bike! We've had money set aside but were waiting until we were in our house. We went to academy and got Caroline a bike. She pedaled around the store and cruised up to the cash register.

We went to some trails and pulled out her bike and helmet and she rode around. Ah! She is so big.

It makes her look so much older...that pink, purple, and green bike of hers!
We are looking forward to lots of bike time!

Another splash pad trip--and we are going again this week--so lots of fun! We met Emmie and Leslie there and watched the kiddos all play together. Totally wears Caroline out. We went swimming last night as she slept in a little bit today after a full day of play.

We made chicken and biscuits for the missionaries who ended up not being able to come bc of car trouble and staying in another area....luckily they make the most delicious leftovers ever. I had to bust out the new mermaid apron and it kept all of the flour off of Caroline.

Anyways...lots of irons in the fire, residency is busy, life is good, Caroline is our world, and we are so so so happy to be closer to family.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017


Caroline is FOUR and we had the best day celebrating #cantgetenoughcaroline!!! Because we really can't get enough of her!
She requested a rainbow cake---so we went with a rainbow theme! She woke up to a table of rainbows to color, markers, and rainbow packages to unwrap!

THE rainbow cake! After picking up ben's birthday cake in June she could not stop talking about a rainbow cake she saw at Brookshire' we rolled with it. Next year I'll bake cakes but this is the year to buy them...apparently! ha!

We opened presents throughout the day and she waited an extra day to get her big present from us---a playhouse for the backyard!

Can't believe she is four

((more bday pics are coming...!!!))

Quick Trip Utah!

This past Friday I flew out to Utah for Aubrey's wedding! She Ben's cousin but since she set Ben and I up--I just had to go!!! 

It was so weird flying by myself. I kept feeling like I was forgetting something because I wasn't traveling with Caroline. After finding 12 ways to not get to DFW I made it there and boarded the plane just fine. We were all set and ready togo when they decided to change the flight crew so we sat for an hour while they went through their checklists and it was SO HOT! 

After we took off we got to the gate only 20 minutes late and then I went to get my rental car. I stayed at Albert and Alison's and helped setup the wedding dinner. The backyard was stunning!!! So pretty and it was fun to see everyone there. Two girl's, kara and katelynn were there husbandless too..and McCall so we had lots of fun...and being kidless for a night was also so relaxing! We all ended up staying the night and getting ready early in the am for Aubrey's sealing at 7:40 am. 

The morning of was perfect and she got lots of pictures around the temple. Afterwards I went to Orson Gygi...this super cool kitchen store in Salt Lake and spent some of my Christmas money from last year (ha!) on some kitchen goodies and this darling apron for Caroline.

Neil and Cathy just flew back from Hawaii so I stopped by there for a little bit to see them and rearrange my suitcases...and load up our macadamia nuts and Caroline's Hawaii shirt. Then I headed to the airport and hopped on a plane for a 2 hour carride back home. I finished two books on this trip--and that never happens!!!

I got home just in time to kiss my birthday girl and have her surprise me when I walked in the door. It was the sweetest welcome home and major PROPS to Ben for making this 23 hour trip to Utah possible! 

Ah! This sweet Lydia girl! So glad I got to see her (and Megan and Bryant)

Roommates, Friends, Cousins!

So pretty! Aubrey seriously looked like a Barbie with her long blonde hair. Ah! She and Sam are such an awesome couple!

SO MANY AWESOME kitchen gadgets.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

This week: Crafting, Balloon Festival, and Backyard Fun

I feel like we've had a busy and happy week! Caroline is almost four which is crazy and so wonderful. She's simply the best and we can't wait to celebrate her this week!

We of course were all hit with some cold/sinus infection combo stuff which was kind of a bummer to start off our week. On the docket was lots of sleep and slow days. Tuesday we got out and went to parks and by Wednesday we were all better. The sniffles were gone! Thank goodness.

Thursday we ventured to Costco. An hour and a half away. We did a big trip and stocked our pantry and freezer full of staples. It was a long night topped off with In and Out and watching the sunset on our way home. There's nothing like a Texas sunset. Ben and I have been listening to the Steve Jobs biography and what a fascinating and polarizing individual...and what would we all do without our iphones and macs?

Friday we ran lots of errands and Caroline--who woke up way too early--was a trooper through it all. Then she took a 2 hour nap which totally helped her out! Ben and I had big plans for Friday night and Caroline needed to not be a grump because they were late night plans.

Longview hosts an Air Balloon Race one weekend each year and at night there are balloon glows. Ben's program coordinator told him all about it and we knew it was something we really wanted to see. We got there around dusk and people were rolling out their balloons. After the star spangled banner all of the fires lit up on the balloons and they began to blow them up. I have no clue the terminology to use to describe it all but it was incredible.

Throughout the night they would do countdowns and all of the balloons would glow at once. It was magical and everything a balloon glow should entail. Caroline kept asking to go made an impression on her and I could totally go back again too! So next year we will be there!

Saturday we woke up and did some major house work. Ben mowed, edged (which hadn't been done in a long time!), and trimmed the bushes. Caroline and I worked inside and then helped Ben pick up some of the yardwork stuff. We were done by 10:30 but totally exhausted from three hours of work and our string of late nights. The day ended with Caroline playing the water sprinklers and the hose in the backyard before sunset. We LOVE our backyard!

Today Ben spoke in church and I taught Gospel Doctrine...I really love my calling right now! Our ward is seriously the best and I am so SO SO SO glad that we ended up where we did. A lot of people are coming back from summer vacation and it's looking like there are lots of kids Caroline's age to play with!

The past two weeks I've started doing pick up toys around 4:00-4:30ish and Caroline watches Creative Galaxy while I cook dinner. It has made such a huge difference in our home. She willingly picks up. Usually after dinner we go swim, to a park, run an errand, go on a drive, so there's not much playing and if there is it is quick clean up.

Also Ben snagged a roomba on Prime day. I don't know if this is embarrassing because I'm a brat or funny...probably a mix. When we moved into our house Ben bought two books I put in the amazon cart and said "happy house!" (or housewarming gift). I told him that books don't qualify but I was so happy to get some new books to read. I was thinking along the lines of a new paper towel holder (tossed ours before we moved) or another set of bowls ( I really need another) or front door mat. So while Matt was here we got a package and I opened it up and literally could not believe it. This roomba has been the best thing ever.

In church today the bishop asked what are things that we can do to make our homes feel peaceful, invite the spirit, and be orderly...and I teased to Ben that he should say "get a roomba" lol. We were laughing but in all honesty it the best thing ever. We are all fascinated with it and I am totally in love.

I keep saying I have just a few more boxes left and then I'm done unpacking. BUT I really think this is it. We had some empty boxes in the office and those are going out to the garage on Monday. All that's left are boxes with a nativity in it and DVD's (that I am tempted to chuck because we only stream now). It's so nice to feel so settled and like we are at home.

That's all we have been up too and now we are gearing up to celebrate our favorite--soon to be--four year old!

Sometimes she just wears herself out!

We collected a ladybug and a cicada shell

So then we watched all sorts of cool bug cartoons to learn more about them!

Ladybug crafts!

Googly eyes!

We tested out all of the Costco couches!

Hot Air Balloon festival!

Character balloons and classic balloons

So in love with this playroom. I can't wait to get some happy pictures up on the wall

Backyard fun!

Headed to church

Totally worn out from church!