Monday, December 16, 2013

Tissue Paper Snowflakes

More winter crafting has been going on over here. 
Easy winter crafting of course. 

We have been decorating our walls with tissue paper snowflakes. 

They are super easy and the kids think they are the coolest thing ever. 
They said that opening them up to see what the design looks like is just like opening a present.
And they are so amazed at how each one is different. 

In case you are a little rusty on your snowflake making skills see the step by step pictures above. 

 Happy snowflake making! 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Taking care of a home and a husband and little ones is hard work. 
Good, hard work. 
Sometimes just keeping the house from burning down and the kids alive is a victory. 
There have been days I have fed my kids cereal for lunch (gasp). 
Or stayed in my pjs all day. 
Don't get me wrong...I strive the be the Proverbs 31 woman mentioned in the Bible.
And by God's grace and help I am becoming more and more like her each day. 
But some days are not glamorous. 
or pretty 
(whether it be a bad attitude, the condition of my house or fishing plastic Easter eggs out of a poop filled toilet).  

But from looking at my Instagram feed you may not know that. 
You may think that I have it all together all the time (ha!). 
  Sometimes I find myself looking at other peoples feeds thinking the same and feeling the weight of comparison. 
A couple weeks ago a few of us moms were chatting at the park (about this very issue) and we decided a hashtag had to be made. 
To keep things real. 
To give people a peek of the stuff that you shove out of the way when you go to take the perfect Instagram picture. 
But mainly to encourage other moms that we all struggle with the same things. 
We aren't proud of it and we are (hopefully) working to improve the areas that need improvement but we aren't perfect and that's ok.
Plus it's fun and funny. 
I've included a sampling of the #realmomz pics below. 

(In case you missed my original post about the reality behind the perfect Instagram pics read THIS)

I kicked off the feed with a mild picture of the inside of my car. 
This is what it really looks like people. 
On a good day. 

There were a lot of dirty dishes in the feed. 
I'm sure we all feel like we are drowning under dishes all the time. 

Moms rarely get to eat a hot meal. 
Or sometimes a meal at all. 

"So if you are coming doesn't look like this. But the other 6 days a week it certainly does."

Oh laundry. 
I think you will forever be my nemesis.

And this has got to be one of my favorites. 
"I am cooking dinner and saw some awesome pics. I'm proud to add my own. Behind the pile of clean laundry, those pics are of the people that came IN the frames. I don't have time to hang up my own family pics! My kids don't care-why should I?"

Today I added this one. 
"The kids chore is to unload the dishwasher everyday. We are still working on the putting everything away part."
So if I ever say "My kids do chores everyday" you know that this is what it looks like (when one child in particular is doing it).

So please feel free to play along and hashtag your own #realmomz pics.
And tell your friends to keep things real and play along too. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Popsicle Stick Snowflakes

I love the snow. 
I'm just not a huge fan of the cold. 
Actually I am a giant wimp in the cold. 
I just got a pair of fleece leggings which are amazing. 
People keep coming up with the best inventions. 
Like these
They totally make fake trees a million times cooler. 

Anyways...remember over thanksgiving break I told Kenzie we could do a craft every day?
Well we made 3. 
Not quite everyday but she was happy. Maybe I was a little over ambitious. 
If you missed the first two check out our Q tip Snowmen paintings and our Cherrios Christmas trees

For our third craft we made giant Popsicle stick snowflakes. 
I think they are technically called craft sticks but you get what we mean.

I had a bunch of step by step pics of the kids making them but I can't find them anywhere. 
Luckily they are super easy.

First we painted the craft sticks with white and silver paint. 
Once they were dry I glued them into the snowflake shape.

Then I let the kids decorate their snowflake with glue and we sprinkled glitter on top.
Easy peasy lemon squeezy (as Mackenzie would say). 

Then we stuffed them into our Christmas tree as decoration.

Festive and fun. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Real life (in between the perfect Instagram pictures)

Instagram can be so deceiving. 
Don't get me wrong I love Instagram. 
I love editing and posting pics from our life and getting a peek into others 
but that's just what it is
a peek.
A tiny glimpse into one second of their day.

Sometimes these glimpses inspire or leave you in awe (like when you see a picture of a beautiful sunset or a tiny snowflake).
sometimes they make you laugh (I'm totally a fan of the new video addition)
sometimes they encourage and build you up
but sometimes (maybe a lot of the time) they leave you discouraged and disheartened. 
Feeling like you are falling short. 
Like you are not as good of a mom/friend/crafter/decorator/baker/stylist/photographer/shopper/adventurer (fill in the blank) as the person whose awesome picture you are looking at. 
That was taken for one second of their day.  

 Here's a little example.
Yesterday I took this pic of me and Wesley. 
I could have posted it with the caption
"Playing with my boy"
and you might have thought a million different things.
Maybe you would scroll right past it
or maybe you would think "that's a cute pic".
Or "that's sweet...spending time with your kids is good".
Or maybe you thought...
"She has 4 kids and still has time to spend with each of her kids. She's such a good mom. I rarely do that."

What you can't tell from this picture is the conversation that happened before it.  

 As we were in the car driving home from dropping Kenzie off from school Wesley asked if I could play with him when we got home.
My first thought was, "I don't have time to play...the house is a disaster and I have so much sewing to get done" but I told him, "Sure, baby. What do you want to play?"
He said, "No I want you to PLAY with me".
I repeated myself..."Well what do you want to play. Do you want to paint? We could do some watercolors?" Or I was thinking to myself...we (I mean you) could watch a movie. Movies are so much fun.
Wesley: "No mom. I want you to play with me. You are always doing grown up stuff."

Knife to the heart! Ok Ok I get it. I'll PLAY with you. Whatever you want. 
{Don't worry I didn't say that just thought it}
So after some discussion he decided he wanted to play stuffed animals with me. 
So we pretended his stuffed animals were in school. 
I was the teacher and he was the adult helper "Mr. Sellars". 
It was 45 minutes of work. 
Good work.
Playing (I mean really getting down on the ground and pretending and playing WITH my kids) can be hard. 
And 10 minutes of pretend play can sometimes feel like an hour.
I'm not going to lie there were a couple of times I tried to make school be over with but he clearly wasn't done (but Mom...they haven't had snack, or they haven't done their memory verse yet, etc.)
but it was a sweet time with my boy.
 A time that I need to make happen more often. 
Especially in the busy seasons where I feel like there just isn't time to do it. 

The other day I was scrolling through my Instagram profile page (where you can see all of your recent pics) and I laughed. 
Because from the outside in it looks like I have it all together (ha!).
It totally seems like I'm always taking my kids out on fun adventures, doing crafts, planning Christmas traditions, taking perfect pics with my family, and sewing for my kids. 
What you don't see are all the meltdowns in between, the dirty dishes in the sink, the 50 pictures it took to get the one of all of us smiling at the same time, the loss of patience, the sibling rivalry, the poopy diapers and everything else that goes on in daily life.
Life is hard. 
Parenting is hard.
Good but hard and messy and rarely picture perfect. 

Yesterday my friend posted this on Facebook. 
to which I replied
"Peppermint Jojo's. everyday."

This is real life people. 
We all sneak Oreos in the kitchen.
And we all need grace. 
On ourselves and on others. 
And thankfully Jesus gives it out freely and generously.
To me and to you. 
All we need to do is to come to Him to get it. Frequently.

So next time you see a picture on Instagram that leads you to compare or be discouraged
just remember it's only one second of time and there is always a story behind the picture. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Happy 6th Birthday Mackenzie

Today my baby is six years old. 

Mackenzie Grace,
Momma is so proud of the woman of God you are growing to be. 
You are the tallest (and I'm pretty sure smartest) girl in you Kindergarten class.
You love school more than anyone else in the world and are a social butterfly.
You are silly and have a playful spirit.
You love to make people laugh but you do not like people laughing at you (two very different things). 

You are so little yet so grown up. 
You are definitely a firstborn. 

You are the best big sister and little momma to your siblings. 
You are nurturing and loving and very helpful. 
Lately you have been loving on Huddy all the time. 
You love to hold him and take care of him. 

 You love going out on Mommy and Daddy dates and we love to spend one on one time with you. 
I love to hear all the things going on in your little head. 

 You love wearing dresses and being fancy. 

You are a soccer stud and scored a bazillion goals at each game. 
All of the other teams didn't believe you were only 6. 

 You are our girly girl but you also love adventure. 
When everyone else wanted to leave the fishing place you begged to stay longer and asked that we bring you back again. 

 You are brave. 
(picture taken right before you broke your arm)

 You are a good, loyal friend with a sensitive heart.

You are kind and caring and a joy to be around. 
I'm so thankful that you are my daughter. 
What a blessing you are to our family!
We love you baby!
Happy 6th birthday!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving and a Cyber Monday special!

Hi Guys! 
First I want to say Happy Thanksgiving!
Hope you guys had a great weekend giving thanks. 
 Jesus has blessed me with so much more than I deserve. 
He is so gracious and abundant to me. 

And I have some exciting news!  
Guess who is a part of this?!!

ME! So crazy. 
If you have been waiting to get some towels make sure you grab some at this great price on Groopdealz
They are live until Wednesday night.

This girl is the Super Star Student at school this week.
Here she is with her biggest fan. 

Tonight we set up for the last Sugar Plum of the year. 
It's at the Buena Park downtown mall this Thursday-Sunday. 
Clic HERE for more details. 

And in the midst of the Groopdealz sale and my boutique this weekend my sewing machine decided to break! I know...I was freaking out. Luckily some friends came to the rescue and I'm borrowing one to get me through the weekend. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to need a new one. Any suggestions on one that is a good work horse?