Tuesday, October 30, 2012

What the what?!?

Did you know that a wide-mouth mason jar fits a kitchen aid mixer?!?! My world has just been rocked! I found this out completely by accident. I was thinking of asking for a magic bullet for christmas so I wouldn't have to wash that huge blender each time i made a smoothie, I'm so glad I found this out first!!! I'm heading out tonight in search of those mason jars with handles, perfect for breakfast smoothies on the go!!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Barbie bathtub

I love watching Tori play. She has such an imagination! Tonight she is giving her barbies a bath.... I was not aware of this plan until Brian asked her why the water was running in the bathroom. She had gotten out the barbies, found a "tub" and started to fill it with water. She has then informed me that they all need their hair washed and brushed, but first they need to dance in the tub. I'm sure this is the first of many many barbie baths to come.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Fall = fun times!

Our family has always loved road trips, fun family outings, spending time outdoors, and spending time together.  This is the main reason we love fall so much.  It seems like there are so many fun events each fall, filling our weekends with smiles and fun times right up to the big holidays!  As much as I love fall and don't want to fast forward even one minute (our babies are growing up SO fast!) I can not wait until Christmas time!!  

My absolute favorite time to photograph is FALL!!  I love the colors, the light seems gentler, and the temperatures are so mild.  I LOVE the way that our pictures turned out this year!!  I could't ask for any better cooperation from three such young kids!  I love the real smiles and that their little personalities shine thru!  These three are my whole world, and I love having pictures of them all together!

We went to Bomke's Patch to pick out our pumpkins this year, and it was actually really fun!  I was just expecting pumpkins but they had games, crafts, a big slide, petting zoo, and hay rack rides.  We didn't even get to do everything bc we hadn't planned on staying that long and the babies were getting hungry.  Tori cried when we left which always makes me feel so guilty because she doesn't get the upset very often.

Even with our crazy lives we love taking time out to spend together.  We try to avoid using the babies as an excuse to not get out, yes of course its more difficult with two infants and a toddler but we can still do almost everything with a little planing before hand.

These two have turned our world upside down but it is definitely for the better!  We are looking forward to lots of fun family outings this fall and many more to come!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Getting into trouble!

Well we have been noticing differences in the twins since birth but it is now very apparent that Liam is all boy!! Lizzi coos and makes cute little sounds, Liam growls or makes fart noises almost non stop. When we feed them peas Lizzi picks them up gently and inspects them, Liam smashes them with his open hand on the table. When the twins are in their walkers Liam is constantly getting into trouble! Pulling on the blinds, running hard into the walls, even figuring out how to get past the child locks on the buffet doors..... By breaking the handle off!!! And hes only 8 months old!!!! Oh goodness the next 18 years should be fun!! :)

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

August catch-up

We managed to lose our laptop, it died painlessly of a corroded hard drive.  Apparently three year olds can a hard on computers :)  We were letting Tori watch movies on the computer when Brian wanted to watch a game and it was getting moved around too much.  Luckily the guys at the computer store were able to get all my data backed up onto an external hard drive.  No gonna lie, I panicked!  I hadn't backed up ANY of the twins baby pictures!!  I would have only had the low quality pictures uploaded to facebook.  Learn your lesson from me, back up your data!!!

So a quick August recap.  The twins both started saying their first "words", Lizzi said "baba" first and then Liam started with "dada" which made Brian one proud father!  Liam also started crawling a few days ago!!!  Oh no!!!  :)  Lizzi can roll to get self where she wants to go but she is also VERY close to crawling.  

 Lizzi also got her ears pierced!!!  We had Tori's done at this age also and it went very well.  They're young enough that they sort of forget that their ears hurt after a few seconds and they don't mess with them while they're healing.  I remember going to get mine done when I was around 5 years old and it was such an ordeal!

 Pretty girl got her first sucker after she got her ears done!  They look so cute on her!
 The babies are starting to fight over toys.....we may as well get used to it right?  They don' seem to get upset yet when a toy is taken from them, but they do always seem to want what their sibling is playing with.  I see many battles in our future!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

So big!

So I've given up trying to blog from my computer... If I sit anywhere near it Tori will whine until she can sit between the computer and myself. Luckily I found the blogger app!! The pictures will be much lower quality since they will all be from my phone instead of my canon but at least I will be able to post again!! :) the twins are 7 months old now!! Craziness!!! They sit by themselves, grab everything in sight (including tori's full bowl of cereal and milk....lesson learned!), babble, give kisses, and eat table food. I have a lot of catching up to do, so I will try my best to post much more often!!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Homemade smoothie freezer packs!

So in light of my love of freezer cooking and of smoothies and of saving money I decided why the heck am I spending $3 on a premade freezer smoothie pack?!?! Especially since the whole family has started drinking them!! I can make my own for under $1 each and they have the added benefits of spinach and protein powder to keep me full!! I bought the separate ingredients (yogurt, bags of frozen fruit, spinach and bananas) and was making them fresh each morning. WAY too time consuming for a busy working mommy of 3 very young kids plus the ingredients being frozen makes a nice thick smoothie. So it dawned on me to make my own preassembled freezer packs!

I've been making and freezing homemade baby food in ice cube trays so I know 2 cups fills my 16-cube trays up perfectly making each cube an ounce. So I put my spinach, yogurt, and protein powder in the blender, added until I got 2 cups, and froze in an ice cube tray! It works like a charm and keeps me full until lunch! Here's the recepie:

Container of spinach
Large container of plain or vanilla yogurt (32 oz)
Protein powder if you choose
Frozen fruit (I used strawberries)
2 ripe bananas

For green cubes:
1/2-3/4 large container of plain yogurt
6-8 scoops protein powder (or 4 servings depending on brand)
A couple of handfuls of spinach

You're aiming for 2 cups finished product in your blender. Once mixed well (the spinach takes a little time to become smooth) pour into ice cube tray and freeze.

In 4 sandwich bags: put 4 green cubes, a handful of strawberries, and half a peeled banana. Place baggies in the freezer!! Each morning, grab your baggie, dump into blender, add milk to just below the top of your frozen ingredients, blend, pour, add a straw and enjoy!!! So easy your toddler can help!! :) oh, and if youre trying to stretch your smoothie dollars, and a few handfuls of ice, a little more milk, and you have enough to split! You can change up your fruits to keep it interesting but berries cover the taste of the spinach the best.

I am working on a Protein coffee smoothie recipe next :)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Tiny Dancer

Tori started ballet lessons a few weeks ago........it is quite possibly the cutest thing I have EVER seen!!  She absolutely loves it!  I had her try on her leotard and tights before the classes started to make sure everything fit (and snap a few pictures of course!).  The little tiny ballet shoes, chiffon skirts and pink tights are just so sweet! 

This is the dance bag that my little princess picked out :)  Why would I expect anything less?  We had to hide it from her after the first two classes because she would bring it to us and beg to put on her dance clothes. 
Class lasts a whole hour and its her first big girl class (not a mommy-and-me class).  Its so nice being able to drop her off and run an errand, but it also makes me sad that I don't get to see everything she's learning or watch her progress in class.  Parents are not allowed to be in the room but there is a small window on the door that we can peek thru and take a few pictures.  From what we've seen they start class by reading a princess story, then stretches, a few movement exercises, some lessons, then stretches again and ending with coloring. 
 Aren't all these tiny ballerinas just soooooo stinkin cute!?!?!

After her first ballet class we took her out for a special treat.  She does great in class and gets so excited to show us what she's learning.  I signed her up for the fall session since she's enjoying it so much and we are also going to try out gymnastics in the fall!! 

Friday, June 8, 2012

Four Months

Are the twins really four months old!?!?!  Surely I have miscalculated somewhere because there is no way they are already 1/3 of the way through the first year!!!  They did have their 4 month appointment today tho, so their pediatrician must have miscalculated too.....  Liam is 12 pounds 9 ounces and Lizzi has passed him up at 12 pounds 12 ounces!  More than double their birth weight!  They are still nursing on average every 2-3 hours so no wonder they're growing so fast!  We had to introduce a formula bottle at bedtime because they are hungry again after only half an hour.  We are still using formula samples we got when I was pregnant, they are lasting forever since they are breastfed the rest of the time.

The pediatrician wants us to wait until they are 6 months to start introducing food so no cute pictures of messy babies for a little bit longer....  She recommends "baby-led weaning" which I had actually just been reading about.  It's where you skip the pureed baby foods all together and start with finger foods around 6 months and allow the babies to feed themselves even from the very beginning.  It sounds interesting but I'll need to read more about it over the next couple of months.

Both babies are getting close to sitting on their own.  They have both been able to roll from belly to back for a while, and Liam is getting close to rolling from back to belly (he gets almost all the way over then gets stuck and starts to fuss).  They have both taken their first dip in grandpa and grandma's pool and enjoyed it eventually.  They are starting to coo (or as we say, "talk") to each other more and more.  Its SO CUTE to hear them carry on little baby conversations!!!  They are both sleeping pretty well now too (woop woop!!) so life is pretty good.  We still are a way off from being tired every day but we no longer feel like zombies just trying to survive until the next bit of shut eye (by far the hardest part of having twins is the sleep deprivation!).  They are both night owls and are up until around 9:30-10 but the up side of that is they sleep until morning, usually Lizzi is the first up around 5-6am and Liam usually sleeps in until around 8-9 when Lizzi is waking for her second feeding.

Everyone is happy and healthy and we can't ask for much more!  We are truly blessed to have such wonderful children and hope that they know just how much they are loved and how much we enjoy being their parents!!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

How to make an applique onesie

I am frequently asked how I make my applique onesies for the twins.  They are actually pretty easy once you know the steps and only cost around $3 each to make (with nothing on sale).  They are even no-sew if you choose!! :)  This time I am making a cute St Louis Cardinals onesie for Liam.
 Here are the supplies you need: Steam-a-seam (don't get the lite unless you plan on only hand washing), your colored fabrics (I use cotton crafters quarters and I honestly don't even prewash them and it hasn't been an issue), a blank onesie (I buy carters brand from walmart.com to save a trip, love their 99cent shipping), and a needle and thread (optional).  I also used an exacto knife bc this logo is hard to cut with scissors.
 You can get your design from just about anywhere.  Freehand, coloring books, cookie cutters, or look online for ideas.  I like to use my laptop screen as a light box to trace my design.  When tracing it is important to note that there are two sides to the steam-a-seam  One side is a protective coating and the other side is the glue.  If you are drawing something that is not directional, you can trace right onto the glue side (textured side).  If you are drawing something like the logo or letters that have to face a certain direction, trace onto the protective coating first.  I then flip it over and trace the design backwards onto the glue side (you'll see why in just a minute). 

Designs drawn on the steam-a-seam.  I like silver colored sharpies to trace.  You can see the design when cutting but its not so dark that you can see it when the onesie is finished.

Cut them out crudely, don't worry about detail here.

Peel the glue side off of the protective coating and stick to the wrong side of your fabric (the wrong side is the part you don't want showing on your finished product). 

Cut your shape out using your traced lines as a guide.  I try to cut just inside my lines so that the marker isn't on my applique.

Place a piece of paper or cardboard inside your onesie to make sure it doesn't glue together if any seeps thru.  Layer your pieces exactly where you want them, once ironed you can not move them. 

Follow the directions on your steam-a-seam package.  I usually iron, allow to cool, then iron again just to make sure it has bonded completely.  The you've got yourself a super cute onesie!!

You can machine or hand stitch around the edges of your applique just to make it look nice but it is not necessary.  This is the first one I haven't stitched and it washes just fine.  I try to avoid machine drying bc I am afraid it will re-melt the glue but my handmade onesies have snuck into the dryer a few times and turned out fine.  Hope this helps anyone interested in trying this out!  Each of these onesies took about 45 minutes from start to finish but a simpler design can be accomplished very quickly.

My super cute baby models :)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Visit from Braden and Cole

We got to spend some time with Catherine, Braden and Cole last week!  They live in Texas so we don't get to see them as often as we'd like.  Tori and Braden always have so much fun together, and now Cole is getting big enough to get in the action.  The big kids got to play with Fizzing sidewalk paint!  The recipe made plenty for both kids with lots of leftovers!  This could entertain Tori for hours!

Brian and I decided to throw caution to the wind and take 4 kids to the STL zoo since Tori has been begging to go back.  We had the twins in a double stroller and the big kids in a wagon.... I lost track of how many people asked us if we had two sets of twins!  It was quite the undertaking, we had to stop constantly for potty breaks and snacks for the big kids, a diaper changes and bottles for the babies.  We worked it out so that half way I took the babies, fed and changed them, and pumped while Brian took the big kids on the train around the zoo, which worked out really well.  All in all it was a good trip and the kids had fun. 

Just hanging around the house we got some big smiles from Liam :)

Baby Lizzi looking so cute!

Bed time stories from Aunt Catherine

We made slime with the big kids on their last day here.  So much fun!  It took some coaxing to get miss Tori to put her hands in the bowl but Braden jumped right in!

We had a great time with all 5 kids in one house!  Looking forward to our next trip to Texas when the twins are bigger and can get in on the games too.