Sunday, December 27, 2009

it all happens too fast!

such a big girl but she looks so little in the bed!

it's hard for me to believe my little girl is sleeping in a twin bed tonight! i've been anticipating this day because i want her good and use to it by the time little sophie arrives however, it's a sad thing too - she's growing up too fast!

i remember almost 21 months ago bringing her home from the hospital. she slept in my arms almost the entire first month because she cried every time i laid her in her bed. then we found out she had reflux and so she began sleeping in her car seat in our room. then, we hit about month 4 and her reflux decreased immensely and she was in her bed. however, we held her to go to sleep. poor habit? maybe, but it worked for us and she falls asleep on her own without any problems now.

just over a year old, molly went to a babysitter for the first time during the day. i was terrified and worried she wouldn't fall asleep laying in a bed by herself. but, she did and that was all it took. we held her for a few weeks after starting at the babysitter to get her to sleep at night, then tried putting her in bed on her own. i remember how hard it was not to hold her to go to sleep but knew it was time she make the transition.

tonight was much the same. i took molly into her big bed and she wanted me to lay down with her. i did for a bit and ran my fingers over her cheeks. we talked about her dinosaur pj's needing to be washed and dried and then she could wear them again, and then about going to sleep. i got up and left - not at all what she was wanting because i knew better than to start the habit of laying in bed with her until she falls asleep. better to do it right from the start because in less than 3 months, i won't be able to. molly did fine. she cried for 5 minutes and was out!

i'm convinced i won't sleep well tonight. i'll wake up and want to make sure she's okay. has she fallen out? is she close to falling out? is the pillow going to suffocate her? she's never used a pillow before but we told her that was part of having a big bed. it's flat so i don't think i need to worry. nonetheless, i'm a mom and therefore i worry! i'll let you know how the next few nights go. i'm hoping as smoothly as tonight!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

variety is the spice of life

being a stay-at-home mom i play the same "games" with molly's toys over and over again. while this is fine, i do tire of them and wish for some variety. this is one reason i'm particularly excited about christmas this year - new toys = new games! good for molly, better for mommy! :o)

yesterday we had christmas with matt's family and molly received a shopping cart. she absolutely loves it, and so i do i! there's lots of different things we can do with it and it will pair nicely with the kitchen she's getting on christmas morning allowing for more extension of play!

so far, this is molly's shopping experience:
the groceries are on the bookshelf!

putting them in her cart!

pushing the cart ot the check out!

scanning the items!

putting them in the bag!

then she pays for them with her play money but i couldn't capture a picture of this (she was done with me taking pictures!). i love this because molly is learning to count so i make everythign worth $2 or $3 and she hands me either 2 bills or 3. sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn't. i think she's figured out what i'm trying to do and doesn't want to do it! every opportunity can be a teaching moment!

finally, the bag goes in the cart and her baby gets a sucker (just like she does at price chopper)!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

christmas at the library!

molly had her christmas party at the library this morning. she had so much fun and did many cute things. here's a glimpse!

making a christmas tree!

singing christmas songs!

a visit from santa! santa was a hit until she realized where she was. then she wanted nothing to do with him!

opening her present! - the very hungry caterpillar book and a candy cane


Saturday, December 5, 2009

christmas crafts 1 and 2

christmas is my favorite holiday and there are so many fun, easy crafts for kids to do during the holiday season. i doubt molly and i will do one every day but here's what we've done so far.

christmas ornament - green craft sticks, pom-pom balls, glitter.

christmas soap - grated bar soap, water, and a little food coloring for fun!

cutting out the shape peppercorn eyes
painting the soap w/food coloring

***note about the soap: food coloring may not be the best option (but is fun). soap falls apart as soon as it gets wet. molly used one during her bath tonight and it was in pieces. so, not a practical thing to do but still lots of fun!

Monday, November 30, 2009

it's the most wonderful time of the year!

i love christmas and all that it brings. first and foremost, it's the time when we remember the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, and why he came to this earth. leaving His throne in heaven to become a man, die a horrible death on the cross to take the punishment for our sins, and then rise again on the third day. don't forget the true meaning of christmas this year while enjoying the other wonders of the season!

the tree! i love christmas trees, especially real trees. i love going out and picking out the perfect tree, bringing it home, struggling to get it to stand just right, and the way it smells! we always seem to get a tree that's bigger than we thought once it enters our house. this doesn't make matt the happiest camper and has him thinking again about buying that artificial one. he only briefly spoke of it this year and then moved on to a plan next year for selecting a tree more size-appropriate for our house. personally, i don't think it's too big. yes, it's a little wide (you can only sit on one spot of the couch to see the t.v.) but it's pretty and looks great! i had so much fun decorating it too. molly helped a bit but couldn't figure out how to hang the ornaments and it was too prickly for her also. she did enjoy looking at all of the ornaments, especially hers!

the music! christmas music is music you can never tire of during the season. radio stations always seem to play the same songs over and over, day after day without a lot of variety. it drives me nuts! but, christmas music is okay. i love the catchy tunes that stick with you throughout the day.

decorations! along with the tree, i love decorating for christmas. i don't go all out and do my entire house, but my living room is full of the christmas spirit, especially snowman! i love snowman and have plenty that i can leave out through the month of january too!

presents! i love christmas shopping. finding the deals. fighting the crowds, wrapping the gifts, giving them. it's so much fun! this year, i'm almost done and it's just now december!

movies! christmas movies are the best. there are many classics i haven't seen that i plan to this year. white christmas is one. i know, it's hard to believe, but i've never seen it. i've got a blockbuster reusable coupon for 1.99 rentals anytime through the 17th and lots of free evenings to watch them.

family! can't forget family. i love spending time with family, catching up, reminiscing, laughing, and eating!

there's so much more - this is just a peek into the christmas i love. more to come as the season continues i'm sure!

parenting isn't easy but consistency helps!

molly has entered a stage where she does not want anything to interrupt her playing. all she wants to do is play or read books. lately, eating has been interfering with her playing and therefore she refuses to eat. anything. okay, maybe a bite or two but really, it's nothing. she will sit in her highchair, buck back like a bronco and say "play". i've told molly she can't play until she eats her food. now, i'm not a stickler about finishing everything on your plate, that's a poor eating habit to get into anyway. but, she does need to eat something. the other night for example, she ate 1/2 a banana and was done. didn't touch her sandwich. molly sat in the highchair that night for close to 45 minutes. it was hard not to give in and just let her get down and play but finally, she ate, played, and was a happy girl.

tonight we repeated this scenario but without the positive effects. molly refused to eat anything but a bite of her egg. she then just kept crying and saying play. i told her she wasn't playing until she ate her food. finally, after about 35 minutes i got her down and stuck her in the bath tub. now, i'm not a total meanie - she did get to play with her bath toys. but when she told me she was finished in the tub she started to cry again. i asked her why she was crying and she said "play". i then asked her why she didn't get to play and what she didn't do and she said, "eat". i don't think my punishment was too harsh for my almost 20 month old. she understood perfectly why she didn't get to play. the best part and really, the truest test came after she was out of the tub. i was cleaning off her tray and tidying up a bit and guess what, molly didn't touch her toys. i didn't even remind her. she just knew. after i finished up we read some books and now she's in bed without a fuss!

while the 35 minute stretch seemed to be much longer it was worth sticking to my guns. maybe tomorrow will be a better dinner experience. consistency can be a parent's best friend!

Monday, November 23, 2009

fun in the leaves

i love the way leaves look on the ground. if i had my way, no one would rake their leaves - they'd just stay on the ground. i mean, when it snows, we don't shovel the snow our of our yard - it's suppose to be there! just like the leaves when they fall off the tree. i know many people do not share my same philosophy (as in my husband). so saturday morning was clean up the leaves morning. molly and i worked on raking a big pile (just to jump in!). that's the only reason to rake leaves. we made a very large pile and then had lots of fun jumping in. the good news - matt ran out of time to pick them up so we've played in them today too! :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009


matt surprised me with a sewing machine today. it was supposed to wait until christmas but he said he wanted me to have it in case i wanted to make anything for the upcoming holidays! isn't he sweet!!! : ) when i got home from the awards ceremony at school he told me to go and look at what domino had done on our bed. i was scared to death thinking something was wrong with my cat. matt sensed my panic and assured me domino was just fine; it wasn't bad. i walked into our room and he told me to lift up the comforter - and there it was!

for those of you who know me well, in the past i've been nothing of a sewer, much less liking anything femine like sewing. scrapbooking was about as crafty as i would get. in fact, in middle school when i was forced to take home ec i did terrible on my sewing project. sure i got an A but my mom did most of the sewing because she got so tired of having to rip out all my seams! i've never sewed since.

when i started reading the instructions on how to thread the machine i thought it looked extremely complicated and doubted my abilities to do this easily. molly went down for her nap and i hunkered down on it. i got it right on the first try and sewed a straight line! (well, for the most part - i need some pins to hold the material still!) it was much easier than i thought.

my first project - an apron! i've been wanting one and get tired of grease splattering on my shirts. i always mean to buy one but never do so now, i'm going to make one! then i'm going to make molly a little one to wear when she cooks at her kitchen and helps me! if all turns out well, i'll post pictures. not sure how long this will all take.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


so molly can spell her name! she's 19 months old and is spelling - crazy! we were playing with play-doh and i made the letter M. she looked at me and said M. then she said O. so i made an O. i asked what was next and she said L. i made two Ls and then asked what was next and she said Y! wow!!! i guess i should start saving for harvard now!

thrifty shopping

i'm not usually one to shop at thrift stores. it's not because i'm against them, used items, or anything like that. i just don't go very often. and usually, when i do go, i find nothing but junk and come out feeling like i need to take a shower in bleach! well, today i ventured into the little thrift store in town (it's disgusting but i thought, why not try it again). i'm glad i did because i got two things - one i'd been needing and the other just for fun. molly has been in need of a booster seat for our kitchen table. we don't use that table except for coloring with markers, painting, and play-doh so her booster/highchair is hooked to our dining room chair. molly usually sits on a pile of old sheets and blankets or stands in the chair. not safe, i know but i'm always right there. molly found it actually and sat down in it. she was thrilled to find a little chair. it looked clean enough and didn't have stains or cracks and was only $2. then i spotted the playschool busy ball toy that has a fan that blows the balls up a tube and they travel back down. molly's loved this toy in the past when we've been at friends' houses that have it and so i asked how much. they told me $.99! i said i'll take it! even if it didn't work with new batteries i wasn't going to lose any money. got it home, cleaned up and it works like a charm. the only thing wrong is that it is missing 2 of the 5 balls. oh well, 3 work great! while i was at wal-mart this afternoon i checked the price. currently, brand new it's on sale for $17 but usually sells for $24.97 and i got it for $.99! i know molly will soon not be interested in it at all but our new little one will get lots of use out of it.
so maybe i'll frequent the thrift stores a little more often. who knows when i'll get another great steal!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


molly has taken an interest in learning to write the letters M and O. she's recognized the letter O for some time now and can point it out on any page of a book. she does fairly well with the letter M also. molly can recognize her name when written, but then again, anything with the letter M is molly. she's been making these mountain type drawings lately and yesterday only made a "two-pointer" mountain. she stopped and looked at me and said, "molly!". so then we tried practicing. sometimes she gets it! we worked on writing the letter O also. it's quite creative and has many turns but she knows to go around in a circle. trouble is, she doesn't stop after creating one turn. it's very cute though and so intelligent i think for a 19 month old to be trying to write letters!

Saturday, October 31, 2009


molly thoroughly enjoyed halloween this year! we checked out books at the library about barney trick-or-treating and had lots of festivities at the library and another fun party plus a few crafts at home with mom and then to top it all off, the real thing - trick-or-treating! we didn't go door to door so much but went to the square and ended up with lots of candy. molly didn't want to wait in line so she weaved her way through the crowd to get to the candy. it was really quite cute how she figured this out. she was very polite by signing thank you but a bit delayed and usually did it as she was turning around or walking away. oh, well. she got that she was supposed to say thank you! grandma and anna came to watch her trick-or-treat and she really enjoyed that as well! molly was quite the little helper passing out candy too. unless that is if the kid had a mask on or lots of face paint! they were a bit scary! i had to help towards the end because she was being a bit too generous with some kids and we were sure to run out before the night was over.

that's a wrap on halloween. on to thanksgiving! i can't wait to make turkeys with molly!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

pumpkin carving with the drakes

molly was so excited to carve her pumpkin....
she even helped draw the lid!
and then she saw the inside and ran away.
she did get brave enough to pick off a seed. we tried telling her they were pumpkin nuts but it didn't work!
so, i did it for her. molly likes her carved pumpkin a lot now!matt worked hard making his bat. he went easy this year as we new we weren't going to have much time with molly running around.
i made a cute little friendly ghost.molly helped matt pick out seeds. by this time she was much braver. i'm thinking she just didn't want to stick her hand in the pumpkin.

she helped get the seeds ready to bake and enjoyed eating them after they were done as well!
the final products all lit up!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

library halloween fun and a super easy craft

today was halloween at the library and so the kids got to wear their costumes. molly was excited to wear hers only because she thought she might get some candy (i was hoping this was true too as i told her she'd get some!). the start was much the same - songs and a story. then, they got to make a craft. it was the cutest little pumpkin ever and so easy! here's what you need: 1 roll of toilet paper, one piece orange tissue paper, felt cut in to the shape of a leaf, eyes, nose, and mouth, lime green pipe cleaner, darker green pipe cleaner, tape, brown lunch sack.

first, wrap the tissue paper around the pumpkin and stuff it in the hole.

next, roll up the paper sack and stick it in the hole for the stem.

then, tape the leaf on to one pipe cleaner and twist the other around your finger. stick them in the hole.
finally, add the eyes, nose and mouth!
after the craft, the kids went trick-or-treating! molly loved this because she's been practicing saying "treat". she wasn't shy about going up to the library or city hall staff and asking for her treat!
then they all got to enjoy some cupcakes and spiders made with cracker, pretzels and raisins. molly had a lot of fun and now wants to go back and do it again. i can't wait for saturday night!

Monday, October 26, 2009

mommy's little helper

i'm so thankful that molly enjoys helping out with housework. it makes it a bit harder, but definitely worth it. i remember growing up hating doing chores - i had a ton everyday - well, it seemed that way when i was younger. however, i do see the value in it - especially after teaching and hearing stories and seeing kids who have zero responsibility at home. their parents clean their room, pack their backpack and essentially let them loaf around the house. maybe it's because they have control issues or have to everything in its place or maybe it is just easier. and while, yes, it might be easier, if they train and teach the child how to do the chores properly, well, it would be easier! :) i hope molly's enthusiasm lasts because whether it does or doesn't, she's stuck with chores as long as she lives in our house! molly has several "chores" including putting away the silverware from the dishwasher. this would be a chore that would be easier for me to do because i have to go back and redo it. molly simply throws the silverware in the drawer. matt and i keep talking about buying a step stool so she can see where everything goes but we've yet to do it. she also helps pick up her toys at night and whenever i need to vacuum, puts clothes in the washer and dryer, puts socks and underwear away, and her wash cloths. she does great taking her dirty clothes from the bathroom after her bath and putting them in her clothes basket also. i think helping with housework at such a young age will help in the years to come - at least i hope! :)


last week we had the privilege of having 3 kittens and their momma visit our backyard. i say we, but am really only referring to molly and me, as matt did not share so much in the joy. i came home from church to find them sunning themselves on our patio chairs. molly and i watched for quite awhile. she enjoyed watching one kitten nurse and liked that it was drinking milk! she also saw the momma cat give it a bath which amused her as well. these kittens were not super tiny, they were well on their way and could most definitely eat solid food but adorable nonetheless! they ventured over to our trash, which was overflowing because we forgot to set it out for the trash man, so i went out to scare them away. most stray cats would run, but these cats were not afraid, in fact, they welcomed the open door and human that approached them and came running up to me. they looked hungry but i knew better than to feed them - i must be obedient to my husband! i did give them some water, though. they looked healthy but i told molly we couldn't touch them because they might be sick.
when matt woke up, molly was anxious to show him and he wasn't too happy because they had indeed torn up the trash. being the good man that he is, went out and cleaned up the trash and set the new trash bag on top of the trash cans (remember, it was too full because we forgot to take it out!) we were getting ready to leave for church that evening and two of the kittens were laying on top of the trash bag all snuggled together. it was a cute picture and well, even matt had to crack a smile. i knew he had a soft spot in his heart for the kittens! then he went as far as naming one - the little black and white one - he called it chip! monday morning he even asked how little chip was doing. hmmm....
chip and panther sleeping on the trash
monday and tuesday night molly and i did play with a little black kitten, panther. oh, matt named that one too! :) (and remember he didn't like them...) she loved it and it humored her to no end. she tried feeding it with her spoon and even threw some nuts for it to chase. the kitten did frustrate her when he was trying to get the nuts she had collected out of her bowl. she's just a little protective of her nuts! since then we haven't seen any sign of the kittens. i'm hoping they've moved on to a safe home where someone will feed them decent food and give them shelter!

molly playing with panther