samantha liz

Mini Train Riding

By our house, there is this park.

 
The kids and I don’t go often enough, but every time we do we say, “We need to come here more often!”

  
There’s two huge playground areas, a sculpture garden, a swim beach, and even a train that circles around. 

  
Today? We rode that train. 

  
We bought our 75ยข tickets, and got them punched as we boarded. ๐Ÿ˜‰ This time, we got in the red caboose in the back.  

  
 
Yup, Thomas…
   Molly…

 Marcus…

   …and Colin. 

 Well, me and Colin {photo courtesy of Thomas}. I had to sit on the floor it was so tiny… And so fun!

  
  

If you can’t make it out over the squeaky-squeaks, there’s even a tunnel!

—-

Marcus: We’re going in there!!

Molly: Oh my gosh, I can’t wait to go in the tunnel! Are you guys excited to go in the tunnel?

Me: There’s a tunnel?

Molly: Yup!

๐Ÿ˜‰ We all had a great time, and I promised this time, we would go again very soon. 

Just another post {insert clever title here}

So, umm… Hi? I’ve always said that I want to blog more, and then life happens and I don’t. I was thinking about all the excuses I have for not doing it, and about how to convince myself to change my ways and just sit down and write, but let’s be honest, I’m just not that structured. So here’s me, starting up blogging again, maybe just maybe it will stick this time. 
Now, where should I begin…

When last I left you, our main bathroom looked roughly like this:  

If you were paying close enough attention (see my reflection in the mirror in the last post) I, at approximately the same time, looked something like this:  

Don’t ask what my toes looked like at that point, because frankly? I couldn’t see them for months.    

I kid… Lol… But back to me and the bathroom… Soon after that, May 19th to be exact, we both looked like this: {The hubby is in this too, beaming like the awesome daddy he is}

  

Colin Finn joined our {not so} little family in the wee hours of the night in the bathtub that I had specked out for just the occasion. The rest of the kids? In love.  

Here’s a couple more photos to fill in the gaps and catch you up to today:      

    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
  

The days have been going by so quickly, I can’t believe this little guy is 3 months old already.       

 Oh yeah, in case you are wondering what the whole bathroom looks like, here’s a shot of that too, now that you are looking at pictures:  

Alright, alright. That’s enough catching up. 
Let’s pretend that I’ve been updating regularly for the past 5 or so months, and this was just another post about what we did today. 

Molly decided this past week that she wanted to go camping. So bright and early this morning they put up the tent in the backyard.   

Then off we went to the store to get some supplies. While we were there these two had to ride the 1ยข ponies. 

 

First, we had a proper picnic.   

Next, we roasted marshmallows by the fire.     
In case you were wondering, Thom, Colin and I all took part in the festivities as well.     

Once the sun set, they played around with the lantern in the yard a bit.  

Then, the kids all piled into the tent…  

Thom read them a story, and off to sleepy land they went.   
All’s quiet on the {little backyard} western front.  Nite-nite. 

Main Bathroom Redo!

When we moved in a bit over a year ago, the bathroom looked like this. Lovely lighthouse wallpaper, shower door fun, and wonderful woody accents.

At the time, I thought, “No biggie. The wallpaper can come down, and the shower door can come down, and a bit of paint, and we’ll call it good.” Unfortunately, something else came down that we didn’t plan on… See that huge mirror? Yeah, turns out that not only was it not glued to the wall, but after Thomas took a shower one day and closed the door behind him, we all heard a large crash to the floor, the anchor screws literally just fell out of the wall. With it, it claimed the sinks, cracking one of them in half as it came tumbling down. 

Thom installed new sinks for us, and hung some new (securely fastened) mirrors, and we replaced the light fixture, removed the shower doors, (and swapped out the toilet seat for a lovely white painted wood seat), but that’s where the successful DIY updating ended. The wallpaper was not a cooperative coming down as the mirror had been. Upon diving into it, there was not one, but three layers of wallpaper and various paint jobs between each layer, causing the wall itself to just come crumbling after it in patches once I did get to the final layer, and if that wasn’t enough the tub spout started to drip. By the start of this week, that drip turned into a full on steady stream of HOT water, complete with heating up the shower handle in the process, making the whole thing not very kid friendly and needing to go. (Plus the wall behind it was caved in a bit too, so we were starting to worry about permanent water damage to the floor and walls). 

Time to call in a professional to help us out. <3 We interviewed three contractors and the one we chose was a clear winner for both Thom and I. Since starting this week, he has been so professional and neat that our instincts seem to have been proven correct. We couldn’t be any happier with how it’s all been progressing.

Since the main bathroom is out of commission, all the kids have been piled into our little master bath, but I think our system has worked out so far! It’s not something I’d want as a permanent setup, but we all are working together to get this done as smoothly as possible. 

Here’s a little taste of what we are going for in that space. I’m so excited to see it all finished, and will be back here next weekend to update you all on how it’s shaping up as well. For now, I leave you with this week’s progress. 

In just four short (okay long) days, here’s where we are at. All the fixtures and walls have come out, and new electric (including an new awesome shower light in the ceiling), also the plumbing is in, complete with a DEEP soaking tub that our amazing contractor figured out how to make the deeper and wider tub fit into our modest space. I cannot wait to use it!

Alien Invasion

The kids created their own aliens, put together costumes and wrote and starred in a play for part of our “schooling” today.

Luna and Adipose ๐Ÿ˜‰
Luna and Adipose

X-CO 3000 meets Luna
Luna and X-CO 3000

He decides that he wants to destroy the planet…
X-CO 3000 challenging Luna

Unfortunately for X-CO, he is no match for Luna!
Luna standing her ground.

Check out the whole play and their introductions with their origin and abilities! (and enjoy the comic styling of the adipose baby)

My Tooth Fairy Doll Pattern on Sew Mama Sew!

Come join me on the Sew Mama Sew! today. I designed a pattern for Molly a month back and decided to make it available as a freebie to you all exclusively on their blog.
Tooth Fairy Doll

The pattern includes full instructions and a free pdf download to make your own tooth fairy doll.
Toothfairy16

Also, since as you can see, Molly already has her own doll, I’ve decided to giveaway the one I sewed up for the tutorial! Head over to Sew Mama Sew! to get the pattern, and be sure to comment to be entered to win the random draw. Good luck, and happy sewing!
sewmamasew

Exploring biomes, literally.

I thought it would be fun for the kids to learn about biomes. It’s only February and we are well on our way to discovering them first hand.

In January we visited the Coniferous Forest of Crested Butte, CO and partook in the snowy fun of sledding.
Crested Butte Sledding Hill
Thomas
Molly
Thom and Marcus

The kids {and Thom} had such a blast on this trip, that we thought why not explore another biome? So we packed up the car and headed to the desert. Joshua Tree National Park to be exact.
Hidden Valley Trail, Joshua Tree National Park

This time, I made up some nomenclature cards about desert life. {Which you can download in pdf form in 4 parts here: Part1, Part2, Part3, and Part4}
Desert Nomenclature
We brought them along with us on our hike of Hidden Valley Trail while the kids photographed them with their iPods.
Photographer Marcus

I brought along my camera too and managed to get a couple shots…
Rock Chilling, Molly Style

Rock Chilling, Thomas Style

…as did Thom.
Photo Op

The kids hiked the whole mile without a complaint and many a climbing opportunity detour.
Exploring

It's high up here!

Rock Jumping

Molly even discovered where the fairies live in the desert, and happily showed me.
Secret garden

Fairies live in the desert too!

Well, that’s two down and so many more to explore… who knows where life will take us next? All I know is that this girl is up for the adventure.
Striking a pose.

Prepping for Santa{aka: the final 2013 52×2!!}

We left food for the reindeer outside again this year. The kids got bold and braved it without even a shoe, never mind a jacket.Carefully sprinkling out the reindeer food.

They each had their own technique too. Thomas carefully sprinkled, while Molly tried to, but lasted only a second before turning her bag upside down and dumping the entire contents onto the ground.
Dumping the whole bag out.

Back inside, she was bright eyed in her Santa prep.
52/52/Portrait - All Bright Eyed.

Pouring the milk, as Thomas readied the carrots.
52/52/Life - Prepping for Santa's Big Arrival

Happy Christmas! And Happy New Year!!

Slinky racing.

The elves today started a slinky race.

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Complete with Elva’s best ChaCha impression. 20131224-085038.jpg

Slinkys are fun.

Cookies for Santa!

The elves noticed that it’s the day before Christmas Eve and we haven’t baked a single cookie!!

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We quickly fixed that and made several batches for good measure.