Thursday, April 25, 2013

my ruby girl



She is 3 years old and very, very smart. She really understands social things quickly. When our neighbors across the street have guests that honk from their car to get someone to come out of the house Ruby looks out the window and says to me quietly "that's rude".

I forgot to write on here, but a few months ago, she went through a phase where she was recognizing people's countenances. She would just straight up call people out on it as we walked by. Point and say "look at that mean guy" as we walk passed. Or "that girl's really nice".

She does not like wearing her hair pulled back whatsoever. I have to beg and plead and make up some excuse like we don't want food to get in your hair or whatever. She always wants it down.

I think she's slooooowly coming out of the stage of wearing a $0.97 plasticy princess dress EVERY.SINGLE.DAY. Typically the same one for days and days in a row. But she still chooses way-too-small-for-her shoes and wants/begs to wear them daily. And naps in them.

The other day I was hyper about something and me and Dad were doing our typical stomp/clap/dance that we do when something awesome happens and I danced super silly and I turned around and she had your hands over her eyes and said "I don't like your body dancing."
Best one liner ever, Ruby.

She loves to trade outfit pieces and shoes with her friends as soon as we get to ecclessia. Such a girl thing!

She has such a good sense of humor. All I have to do is smirk at her when she's acting ridiculous and we both lose it because she knows that behavior isn't gon' fly.

The other day I had her sit in time out. I walked in to talk to her and over heard her singing "and Daddy is the boooossss" waving her finger to the rhythm of the song.

Rides her tricycle all over the house. Her own little transportation system.

Spits her toothpaste out great.

Likes her hair blow-dried.

Gets her own cups and pours her own drinks.

Would wear a dress everyday if we had enough to.





Ruby, I notice and adore every curve of your face, every swirl of your hair, your small white teeth, the shape of your legs and belly, and your thin but soft arms.
You'll always be my child that'll be with me the longest. My firstborn! My pal.
I love you, sweetie.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

life lately


Sunday evening yardwork

early morning with Ruby girl

I love having a 3 year old! She totally knows what birthdays are and came into my room with this crown for me to wear and said "hapsy birsday, mommy!"

oh, when they are big but still want to cuddle you on your lap when they don't feel themselves. so precious.
makes nothing else matter!

the Target dressing rooms: a place where you go for a body reality check.
Of course I chose a filter that made me look more tan and less lumpy.

such a big personality in that little body

making tracks on Garage Band. I love him.

every other Monday I have the girls by myself from 8:00am-8:15pm. From 4:00-6:00 it can get a little "survival of the fittest" around here. Here I am taking a desperation walk on our front sidewalk to get Nora to cheer up while sissy's on the potty inside. (don't worry, front door is open, I could hear her:) )

sometimes you just need to buy some fresh raspberries in bulk and squeeze them on yourself, right nora?
and lose your other shoe in the store somewhere while doing it:(

thank you, Father, for the change of seasons. In weather and in life.

post run. running should not take this much work! I'm only 27!

a very tired, very Kevin-looking, very messy Nora girl.
the food was in her tear ducts. and of course she licked the washcloth as I wiped it off.

same day. messy girl!

my heart flutters with happiness when it's warm enough to wear sandals.

Ruby in her favorite place in the world - a park.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

eating real food makes you come alive

(i actually think they didn't take a picture last time Kev had to renew so this pic might be 8 years old)

We had to renew our licenses this year (every four years in AR) and I was shocked to see the difference in our before and afters. Not just less chubby, but more alive looking! We look more alert and more vibrant, which is exactly what eating nutrient dense, whole foods does for you. Keep in mind we added two children to the mix, so we should look exhausted! (which, we are by the way)

Swap out something fake for something real today. Try to go ONE whole day with only eating foods that were around during the Civil War. Don't fall for the marketing of all the gluten free snacks thinking  you are switching to healthy. Read the ingredients, it's junk.

Of course, we don't always have holy-perfect-glowing-with-God's-glory food, but we really do make it a point and make it our lifestyle. And the beautiful thing is that is rarely EVER a "sacrifice". You get sweet and rich still, you get salty and savory still. It's just more of you creating it. A little more work with a lifetime of health and happiness as the payoff.


Sunday, April 7, 2013

i'm about to rock your world


Please go to your bathroom, find your deodorant, and toss it in the trash can.
You no longer have to use that nasty ole thing.
No more pore clogging.
No more aluminum.
No more nasty perfumes that smell like sin when mixed with BO.

I had given up on deodorant all together so I googled "going deodorant free" thinking I could find some tips to slowly wean off of it without smelling like death and losing all my friends. And that's when I found this angel:

JESSICA'S DREAM COME TRUE

You must read.
This is it folks - the all natural deodorant THAT WORKS. I've been on this hunt for about 3 years now. (you can see my excited comment-her only comment-at the bottom as proof)

*I probably only did 10 drops each of eucalyptus and lemon oils but she says to do way more. Just depends if you want more scented/unscented smell. I like the fact like mine has a very light and airy slight lemon-y smell but then basically becomes unscented pretty quickly.

*This works PERFECTLY on Kevin. He hesitantly tried it and he was pleased as punch and we both use it everyday as our deodorant without any embarrassing problems. Some days you might need to reapply late in the afternoon or whatever, but I've found that's only rare occasions. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

never too early to start

yes, X is on there twice. that's one she's working extra hard on.
Ruby and I have started "homeschooling" a little early.
It's just your typical things mamas do with their preschoolers, but I make sure to make her think it's cool and special and associate learning with FUN because in a couple of years when we actually do start our homeschooling then it will be familiar and already cool. (hopefully!)
I know she feels super special that we clear the table and sit down and make it a special "Ruby" time where she has my 100% attention and lots of words of affirmation.


I can already tell that she is a perfectionist and gets frustrated if she doesn't do it great the first time. I'm going to have to teach her that imperfection is part of learning and really impart grace to her. I know how she feels. As we all know, I can be so hard on myself as well. Hate to see yucky stuff in you that you're dealing with show up in your kids.
Trusting Holy Spirit to show us how to walk this out and deal with it together!

after writing the letters, we molded their shapes with play-doh.
(i found this great notebook at a school-supply store here locally)
In the meantime - GO RUBY! My little alphabet queen!
It's such a fun and beautiful thing to be the one teaching your children something and see them "get" it.

post script: this was the first day we had really sat down to write out all of the letters. We've done it more since then and she just keeps getting awesome at it. Writes all the letters and writes them VERY well (s, x, and z are a little artistic:) ) 

Monday, April 1, 2013

nora 8 months

mouth-always open. always havin' a good time!

Ok, sweetie, something in you just *clicked* this month and you became AWESOME.
Like...so fun and happy all the time. And content to play with some toys on the floor and scoot around and just whatever - without hardly ever a complaint.
aka - my dream baby.


Your first 7 months were very challenging. You seemed frustrated and picky and annoyed most of the time. You cried a lot. I couldn't get anything done and I felt like a slave working under a very emotional boss.

And then? You got old enough to be "mobile" and more independent and you started to blossom. A switch was flipped and you became Nora! You are so happy!!
I genuinely love hanging out and playing with you - you are so fun now.
(For the record, Jammie tells me I was exactly like this as a baby. Frustrated and cranky until I could move around my self and then I was happy and wonderful. Hmmm. I'm thinking you might be Daddy on the outside, Mommy on the inside?)




-You weigh 19 or 20 pounds, according to our bathroom scale

-You have never been to any doctor or been sick other than runny nose and for that I am so grateful!

-You laugh at Ruby when she's crying which sometimes does the trick and turns Ruby's crying into laughter as well

-You are happy, happy, happy!

-You've been saying "da da", and "ma" like maybe once or twice.

-You chuckle and side grin and totally get our jokes. You have our sense of humor and you are 8 months old?! It's hilarious.

-I finally just picked off cradle cap you had in the very fron because it looked so gross to me. I let it go for about 7.5 months because I had read to leave it alone, but one day I just thought for your sake, you'd want me to pick it off. Did it while you were nursing and it didn't phase you a bit.

-Your hair is coming in very, very blonde. More like mine when I was a baby and Ruby's was more like Daddy's.

-You sleep through the night MOST of the time, but every now and then will go in a few phases where you wake up to nurse.

-You love food, and have shown no signs to not being able to handle any types of food.

-You keep getting your leg, and sometimes arm, stuck in between the bars of the crib and I hear you cry and think "she'll fall back asleep" but then it gets louder and I come in and you're stuck. Annoying I'm sure! I gave away both crib bumpers because they are suffocation risks as infants. Sigh. I feel like third times a charm-with our third baby I might have this thing nailed. In other words, I don't think crib bumpers are suffocations risks when they are Nora's age! As infants, sure, but our babies don't even sleep in the crib as infants so not a problem. Anyways...


-You are wearing size 6-12 mo shirts/onesies.
size 12mo-3t (capri) leggings and skirts. Cloth diapers help you fit into sister's clothes much sooner:)

-You take a morning nap around 10:00 and an afternoon nap around 3 or 4:00 and go to bed at 8:00pm.

-You are a big momma's girl.

-You cheeks could resurrect the dead. I love them so much. You can find me on any given day burying my face into them.

-No teeth yet, and crawling is right around the corner. You are scooting back, and getting up on hands and knees "pumping" yourself to get going but haven't taken that knee forward quite yet.

-You are SO CLOSE to going from laying to sitting up on your own. I think it'll happen any day now.


We absolutely and completely love you. 
You fit right in with this family, you happy girl, you!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

my ruby girl



She is 3 years old and very, very smart. She really understands social things quickly. When our neighbors across the street have guests that honk from their car to get someone to come out of the house Ruby looks out the window and says to me quietly "that's rude".

I forgot to write on here, but a few months ago, she went through a phase where she was recognizing people's countenances. She would just straight up call people out on it as we walked by. Point and say "look at that mean guy" as we walk passed. Or "that girl's really nice".

She does not like wearing her hair pulled back whatsoever. I have to beg and plead and make up some excuse like we don't want food to get in your hair or whatever. She always wants it down.

I think she's slooooowly coming out of the stage of wearing a $0.97 plasticy princess dress EVERY.SINGLE.DAY. Typically the same one for days and days in a row. But she still chooses way-too-small-for-her shoes and wants/begs to wear them daily. And naps in them.

The other day I was hyper about something and me and Dad were doing our typical stomp/clap/dance that we do when something awesome happens and I danced super silly and I turned around and she had your hands over her eyes and said "I don't like your body dancing."
Best one liner ever, Ruby.

She loves to trade outfit pieces and shoes with her friends as soon as we get to ecclessia. Such a girl thing!

She has such a good sense of humor. All I have to do is smirk at her when she's acting ridiculous and we both lose it because she knows that behavior isn't gon' fly.

The other day I had her sit in time out. I walked in to talk to her and over heard her singing "and Daddy is the boooossss" waving her finger to the rhythm of the song.

Rides her tricycle all over the house. Her own little transportation system.

Spits her toothpaste out great.

Likes her hair blow-dried.

Gets her own cups and pours her own drinks.

Would wear a dress everyday if we had enough to.





Ruby, I notice and adore every curve of your face, every swirl of your hair, your small white teeth, the shape of your legs and belly, and your thin but soft arms.
You'll always be my child that'll be with me the longest. My firstborn! My pal.
I love you, sweetie.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

life lately


Sunday evening yardwork

early morning with Ruby girl

I love having a 3 year old! She totally knows what birthdays are and came into my room with this crown for me to wear and said "hapsy birsday, mommy!"

oh, when they are big but still want to cuddle you on your lap when they don't feel themselves. so precious.
makes nothing else matter!

the Target dressing rooms: a place where you go for a body reality check.
Of course I chose a filter that made me look more tan and less lumpy.

such a big personality in that little body

making tracks on Garage Band. I love him.

every other Monday I have the girls by myself from 8:00am-8:15pm. From 4:00-6:00 it can get a little "survival of the fittest" around here. Here I am taking a desperation walk on our front sidewalk to get Nora to cheer up while sissy's on the potty inside. (don't worry, front door is open, I could hear her:) )

sometimes you just need to buy some fresh raspberries in bulk and squeeze them on yourself, right nora?
and lose your other shoe in the store somewhere while doing it:(

thank you, Father, for the change of seasons. In weather and in life.

post run. running should not take this much work! I'm only 27!

a very tired, very Kevin-looking, very messy Nora girl.
the food was in her tear ducts. and of course she licked the washcloth as I wiped it off.

same day. messy girl!

my heart flutters with happiness when it's warm enough to wear sandals.

Ruby in her favorite place in the world - a park.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

eating real food makes you come alive

(i actually think they didn't take a picture last time Kev had to renew so this pic might be 8 years old)

We had to renew our licenses this year (every four years in AR) and I was shocked to see the difference in our before and afters. Not just less chubby, but more alive looking! We look more alert and more vibrant, which is exactly what eating nutrient dense, whole foods does for you. Keep in mind we added two children to the mix, so we should look exhausted! (which, we are by the way)

Swap out something fake for something real today. Try to go ONE whole day with only eating foods that were around during the Civil War. Don't fall for the marketing of all the gluten free snacks thinking  you are switching to healthy. Read the ingredients, it's junk.

Of course, we don't always have holy-perfect-glowing-with-God's-glory food, but we really do make it a point and make it our lifestyle. And the beautiful thing is that is rarely EVER a "sacrifice". You get sweet and rich still, you get salty and savory still. It's just more of you creating it. A little more work with a lifetime of health and happiness as the payoff.


Sunday, April 7, 2013

i'm about to rock your world


Please go to your bathroom, find your deodorant, and toss it in the trash can.
You no longer have to use that nasty ole thing.
No more pore clogging.
No more aluminum.
No more nasty perfumes that smell like sin when mixed with BO.

I had given up on deodorant all together so I googled "going deodorant free" thinking I could find some tips to slowly wean off of it without smelling like death and losing all my friends. And that's when I found this angel:

JESSICA'S DREAM COME TRUE

You must read.
This is it folks - the all natural deodorant THAT WORKS. I've been on this hunt for about 3 years now. (you can see my excited comment-her only comment-at the bottom as proof)

*I probably only did 10 drops each of eucalyptus and lemon oils but she says to do way more. Just depends if you want more scented/unscented smell. I like the fact like mine has a very light and airy slight lemon-y smell but then basically becomes unscented pretty quickly.

*This works PERFECTLY on Kevin. He hesitantly tried it and he was pleased as punch and we both use it everyday as our deodorant without any embarrassing problems. Some days you might need to reapply late in the afternoon or whatever, but I've found that's only rare occasions. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

never too early to start

yes, X is on there twice. that's one she's working extra hard on.
Ruby and I have started "homeschooling" a little early.
It's just your typical things mamas do with their preschoolers, but I make sure to make her think it's cool and special and associate learning with FUN because in a couple of years when we actually do start our homeschooling then it will be familiar and already cool. (hopefully!)
I know she feels super special that we clear the table and sit down and make it a special "Ruby" time where she has my 100% attention and lots of words of affirmation.


I can already tell that she is a perfectionist and gets frustrated if she doesn't do it great the first time. I'm going to have to teach her that imperfection is part of learning and really impart grace to her. I know how she feels. As we all know, I can be so hard on myself as well. Hate to see yucky stuff in you that you're dealing with show up in your kids.
Trusting Holy Spirit to show us how to walk this out and deal with it together!

after writing the letters, we molded their shapes with play-doh.
(i found this great notebook at a school-supply store here locally)
In the meantime - GO RUBY! My little alphabet queen!
It's such a fun and beautiful thing to be the one teaching your children something and see them "get" it.

post script: this was the first day we had really sat down to write out all of the letters. We've done it more since then and she just keeps getting awesome at it. Writes all the letters and writes them VERY well (s, x, and z are a little artistic:) ) 

Monday, April 1, 2013

nora 8 months

mouth-always open. always havin' a good time!

Ok, sweetie, something in you just *clicked* this month and you became AWESOME.
Like...so fun and happy all the time. And content to play with some toys on the floor and scoot around and just whatever - without hardly ever a complaint.
aka - my dream baby.


Your first 7 months were very challenging. You seemed frustrated and picky and annoyed most of the time. You cried a lot. I couldn't get anything done and I felt like a slave working under a very emotional boss.

And then? You got old enough to be "mobile" and more independent and you started to blossom. A switch was flipped and you became Nora! You are so happy!!
I genuinely love hanging out and playing with you - you are so fun now.
(For the record, Jammie tells me I was exactly like this as a baby. Frustrated and cranky until I could move around my self and then I was happy and wonderful. Hmmm. I'm thinking you might be Daddy on the outside, Mommy on the inside?)




-You weigh 19 or 20 pounds, according to our bathroom scale

-You have never been to any doctor or been sick other than runny nose and for that I am so grateful!

-You laugh at Ruby when she's crying which sometimes does the trick and turns Ruby's crying into laughter as well

-You are happy, happy, happy!

-You've been saying "da da", and "ma" like maybe once or twice.

-You chuckle and side grin and totally get our jokes. You have our sense of humor and you are 8 months old?! It's hilarious.

-I finally just picked off cradle cap you had in the very fron because it looked so gross to me. I let it go for about 7.5 months because I had read to leave it alone, but one day I just thought for your sake, you'd want me to pick it off. Did it while you were nursing and it didn't phase you a bit.

-Your hair is coming in very, very blonde. More like mine when I was a baby and Ruby's was more like Daddy's.

-You sleep through the night MOST of the time, but every now and then will go in a few phases where you wake up to nurse.

-You love food, and have shown no signs to not being able to handle any types of food.

-You keep getting your leg, and sometimes arm, stuck in between the bars of the crib and I hear you cry and think "she'll fall back asleep" but then it gets louder and I come in and you're stuck. Annoying I'm sure! I gave away both crib bumpers because they are suffocation risks as infants. Sigh. I feel like third times a charm-with our third baby I might have this thing nailed. In other words, I don't think crib bumpers are suffocations risks when they are Nora's age! As infants, sure, but our babies don't even sleep in the crib as infants so not a problem. Anyways...


-You are wearing size 6-12 mo shirts/onesies.
size 12mo-3t (capri) leggings and skirts. Cloth diapers help you fit into sister's clothes much sooner:)

-You take a morning nap around 10:00 and an afternoon nap around 3 or 4:00 and go to bed at 8:00pm.

-You are a big momma's girl.

-You cheeks could resurrect the dead. I love them so much. You can find me on any given day burying my face into them.

-No teeth yet, and crawling is right around the corner. You are scooting back, and getting up on hands and knees "pumping" yourself to get going but haven't taken that knee forward quite yet.

-You are SO CLOSE to going from laying to sitting up on your own. I think it'll happen any day now.


We absolutely and completely love you. 
You fit right in with this family, you happy girl, you!