Friday, February 27, 2015

jump around

Yesterday we had our first Defy Gravity experience. {They have a great weekday deal from 9-12 where one parent can jump for free} Neither one of us has jumped on a trampoline in quite awhile, it was sickening how exhausted Mike and I were after jumping for a little bit! 

Kensi did the typical two year old thing. Talked about wanting to go all the way up until we were actually standing on the trampoline. Then she didn't want anyone around her to jump. She had several moments of freak outs and tantrums...even a timeout, but it could have been worse. She finally came around and really started enjoying the fun of jumping into a foam pit, which let us just prepare you nearly impossible to move in and even more impossible to get out of. We felt so ridiculous trying to lift our legs and 'swim' to the edge as we found a rope to help drag our bodies out. 

I think the best part was watching her trying to fling her body up the ramp and sliding all the way back down. She did this over and over again. That and taking way too many slow-mo videos. It was so much fun playing together, we were rolling in toddler laughs! 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


When we picked everything out for our house in te design studio we paid for the option to choose our own color for the interior of the house. We were so excited to not have yellow or tan walls, but once we moved in we quickly learned the builder only used a flat paint in the entire house which was not good for bathrooms and little toddler hands. I personally very much dislike flat paint for these reasons specifically because it shows every scuff, water splash and fingerprint. It's also nearly impossible to clean. We knew we would have to repaint everything, but decided to wait until after our one year walk-through where our builder provides a contractor to fix and nail pops, drywall seams and cracks from the house settling. We just had all this done last week and with our schedule getting a little turned upside down I need something to keep me busy when the kiddos are not. 
First things first....the bathrooms! I've mentioned before that when we chose our upgrades, we kept everything basic except mainly structural things. So in our bathrooms we have a shower/tub insert and it doesn't go all the way to the ceiling. This can be a problem especially if any water hits the wall and it's flat paint. The water just absorbs into the drywall and if it's not well ventilated it can cause mold. Which no one wants to deal with! So instead we're using a satin finish on the bathroom walls. {the rest of the house will be done in an eggshell finish}. 
I really do love the color we chose {functional gray by sherwin williams} but the sun hits the front of our house and all our windows are on the back causing it to feel a little darker. Besides from lightning it up in some rooms, we also want to add a little color in others. {I will not be afraid, I will not be afraid....of color}. 
Throughout the house I have my paint samples taped everywhere. Kensi thinks it's funny and likes to add her own. Wishful thinking baby girl. 

In the midst of trying to choose paint colors, I still have to entertain the nuggets. I'm so grateful for the moments where Kensi feels brave enough to entertain Finn all on her own. Whether it be with the iPad or her version of singing which consists on one single note being held as long as her breath allows or until Finn rolls over her and ends up kicking her the face. 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

This was my mom's go to recipe for chocolate chip cookies when we were growing up. She found the recipe in our local paper well before I was born. Since then she's adopted a few different cookie recipes, but these are still my favorite. I love the oatmeal; it makes the cookie hearty and gives it so much texture. The original recipe encourages to add candy pieces, but we've never done so. To make them a little more colorful and fun you can swap some of the chocolate chips for M&M's.

Kensi and I were due for a baking date. So when asked if she wanted to do so muffins or cookies she jumped on the cookie wagon. I may have persuaded her a bit by talking about all the yummy chocolate chips and the fact that she could eat a few while we made the cookies. 

I cut the recipe in half because a full recipe makes 112 cookies. Yes, 112 regular sized cookies. We would often put them in a ziplock bag and toss them in the freezer and grab one or two for an afternoon snack. Mike, Kensi and I love the giant coffee shop sized cookies and make our own using an ice cream scoop. They are the best thing on earth on a cold winter day...or a rainy day, sunny day, windy day, hot day, cool day, warm day....really just any day. There's no magical kind of day you need to make these, just go make them and they'll make your {insert type of day} day magically delightful.
Also, there's a lot a sugar. It's a cookie. Get over it. Just don't eat them all. 

Newspaper Cookies:
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
Makes 56 regular sized cookies or 20 large cookies, that is if you don't eat the dough
1/2 lb Unsalted Butter {2 sticks}, softened 
1 cup White Sugar
1 cup Brown Sugar
2 Eggs
1 teaspoon Vanilla 
2-1/2 cups Old Fashioned Oats
2 cups Flour
1/4 cup Wheat Germ (optional)
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Baling Powder
1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
2 cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees {F}. Cream butter and sugars together. Add eggs and vanilla. 
Using a food processor or grinder, grind the oatmeal until it's a powder. I like to leave mine slightly piecey for a little more texture. 
In a separate bowl combine ground oatmeal, flour, wheat germ, baking soda, baking powder and salt. 
Slowly, add the dry ingredients into the creamed butter and sugar mixture. Mix until well combined. Then add in the chocolate chips. 
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and choose your cookie scoop size. Place cookie dough balls about 2 inches apart. These cookies spread quite a bit. If making large sized cookies and using an ice cream scoop, don't put more than 5 on a large cookie sheet. 
Bake regular sized cookies for 8 minutes. If making larger cookies, bake 12-14 minutes or until slightly golden on outside edges. 
These are incredibly awesome if you're a milk dunker like me. They. Are. So. Good. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

play time

For months and months Kensi had asked for a play kitchen and we made over the IKEA one for her for Christmas. She loves this thing! She's constantly baking up sweet treats and coffee, but not just any coffee....Starbucks coffee. Oh and with a cake pop too. In our post about this cute little kitchen makeover I mentioned my sister and BIL made her the perfect apron. She's finally taking a liking to wearing it and most days I find her running her own Starbucks shop. 

It makes me so happy to see her happy. And I'm even more excited that she loves to pretend play. I think having a play kitchen is a total must for any playroom especially for this age. 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

new books

In the past I've shared some of our favorite books for Valentine's Day. To share an entire new list would be silly because 1) we don't buy an entire new set of books each year for every holiday and 2) why would I just repeat a list I've already shared when readers can just go to the old post here? So, instead I'm sharing two new books we have. One was received as a gift and the other we purchased. It's actually kind of funny. Kensi, Finn and I read every day. We keep a basket of books related to the current holiday or season on the fireplace for easy access all day long. We hadn't bought Finn any new books because we had several from when Kensi was a tiny babe. Well this past week that didn't go over so well. Kensi sorted Finn's books from her own and wouldn't let me read any of hers to him. Lovely, right. The fighting and no sharing thing has officially begun. According to Kensi, Finn had two books and that was it. While making our weekly run to Target we picked out a new book for Finn {not because of Kensi, but because we choose a new book to add to our holiday collections every year} and Kensi even had a meltdown about this in the store. I'm not really sure if she was upset because of the book we chose or because we chose it more for Finn....don't worry though she already had her book at home. This is actually sounding more and more ridiculous as I write. Long story short....we got a new book, Kensi didn't like it, now she does and she reads it to Finn. {side note...she’s hid it a few times} 
Anyways, I like adding a book or two each year to our stash because it’s an inexpensive way to keep building and adding to our collection and it also gets them {and me} excited to read a new book. I rarely ever get rid of books either because we can use them again and again with each new babe, but also as Kensi gets older they become easier for her to read to Finn. It’s a total win-win. So this year Kensi’s ‘Valentine’ book is In My Heart by Jo Witek. She actually received this as a gift when Finn was born and it’s become one of my most favorite books. We read this book almost every day and now Kensi is recognizing  a lot of the pictures and reads it to us. Having a two year old read is by far the cutest thing ever. Not only is she telling her version of the story, but if she knows what the page should generally be about and she’s struggling she makes up her own words and thinks it’s just the funniest thing in the world. I also love the whole premise of this book. It’s all about feelings and emotions and how we can feel many different things. Kensi has been testing us for months now and she can get really hulk angry and she can’t figure out how to calm down. This book has helped SO much! Whenever she is having a moment we immediately refer to the book and she can calm herself down and think about how she’s acting and actually tell us what’s wrong. No more playing guess what’s wrong! 
Finn’s book is The Biggest Kiss by Joanna Walsh. I’ve read this several times at the bookstore in the hardcopy, but couldn’t bring myself to buy it. Now they have it in a board book which is perfect. Finn has been smiling and babbling a lot and it just gets more adorable when we read to him. I know he doesn’t understand what we’re saying but I like to think he does. His little face just lights up when we all read together!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

happy hearts and painted valentines

I love that it's February and Valentine's day is drawing near. It's always such a lovie, bright, feel good holiday. I remember picking out the coolest boxed Valentines and laying on the floor in the living room with my class list and carefully writing each of my classmates names. Of course I saved my favorite cards from the box for my best friends and my crush of the week. Looking back I was such a nerd, but then again weren't we all? I think holidays do that to us. Make us all giddy...sometimes way more giddy than we'd like to admit, but that's what make holidays so much fun. 
I can't remember if I've shared in past valentine posts, but every year Mike and I opt out of the whole going out for dinner thing. For years now, and it mostly started because we had zero money....and continues because it's just become tradition, we plan an extravagant homemade dinner. Usually Mike takes care of din and I create a very decacdant dessert. I've never made the same dessert twice, but I can't decide what to make this year. Right now I'm all about chocolate and citrus.....hmmm...I'm sure I'll come up with something. 
This week Kensi made her valentines to send to our family and friends. She's been asking to paint the last few days so this actually was the perfect project to keep her busy. 
I love taking picture of her especially when she's creating and to be perfectly honest I love to set up the setting just right. Kinda silly I know, but it's nicer to look back on photos and not see a horrible eye sore in the corner of the photo. Well since we were painting and I didn't really want to pull out our roll of craft paper to catch spills I just left the football field table cloth from Sunday. It was definitely fun for the Super Bowl, but not so much for making valentines...although it was did its job at catching every paint drop and spill. 

Our valentines this year were a bit of a wing it sorta thing. I had some envelopes left over from our Christmas cards the last few years and cut some card stock to fit inside. I thought I had watercolors, but I didn't so we had a little paint left in these two sets and just added water to them. They worked great! Kensi ended up painting her valentine cards three different times throughout the day. She said she needed to take a break and watch Tarzan. Whatever is takes baby girl. I did of course help her fill in some of the white left on each card but she really didn't great job! We finished them off by writing a cute and simple message on the bottom corner like Happy Heart Day, Be My Valentine or You Make Me Happy.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

two months

{Month Two Milestones}
-1st road trip to raleigh-
-hates tummy time-
-3-6 month size clothes-
-loves his penguin-
-super chill-

I really don’t have a ton to share from the last month other than the typically baby stuff. Finn is such a big boy though, we have his 2 month visit coming up and we’re actually betting on his weight. I’m thinking around 16 lbs. I’ll post a little update once we know. He’s such a little porker! One thing’s for sure, he’s going from size 1 diapers to size 3 based on the weight capacity. The size 2 diapers have  a small weight range and actually overlap into size 3 so we’re going right ahead and making the jump. He’s also wearing 3-6 month onesies. Unbelievable! 

Sunday, February 1, 2015


...Valentine decor can be for boys too!
Happy February to all! Is it just me or do you also get the feeling that this year is going fly by? I mean it's already February....just crazy. January has always been a draggy month for me. I also think I go dumb for the month. I literally seem to forget what the date is, I completely lose track of time and my common sense. January is always a good month for me to start making my list of to dos for the year. With our budget being as tight as it is we have to pick and choose our projects. We've been in our house for one year now and there is still A TON that needs to be done. One of my to dos is to create more holiday decor for the house. And since Valentine's Day is our first holiday of the year I thought it was only appropriate {for Finn} to add a little touch of blue into our decor. If you read my post about obsessions then you'll understand why I created a pom pom garland. I intended to make a pom pom wreath for Christmas, but as you can imagine that didn't get done with all the commotion we had going on over here. So Valentine's Day seemed like the perfect time to start creating again. 
I picked out a few different shades of pink, red and turquoise for the poms and made them in multiple sizes just to be a little different. After all my poms were made and fluffed, I strung them together using a long piece of yarn. 
Too cute! I may get a little pom pom happy this year!
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