Sunday, July 17, 2011

Smiles at the Beach - A Family Beach Pic (or two :))

I cannot even express how much I love and love living life with these people :)

We got two out of three littles smiling, one out of three looking at the camera, three out of three loving life.

We love BabyBoy's little hand in his little pocket, so him. So funny :). And Little's big ol' cheese smile where you can't see his big beautiful eyes, he's smiling so big ;). And Littlest's big turquoise flower, white dress, and sweet cheeks, ahh, melting. And the boys in pink and their cute plaid or seersucker shorts and the girls in white and turquoise. I love it :)

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{Emerald Isle, NC - July 2011}

And one more because I/we can't completely choose between these two pics ;) There are things I-we like and don't about each pic! Which one is more frameable??

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Oh boy, we are blessed beyond belief. God is sovereign. God is good. We thank Him all. the. time. for our imperfectly perfect life!

Monday, July 11, 2011

My First Vlog: Packing Tips for a (Long ;)) Trip With Littles and My Love for Plastic Storage Bags

Ok fam and friends this is my very first vlog (video-blog). And I am ner-vous to post it. :) Read below first, so I can go hide behind something while you watch my goofball self in this video.....

Before you watch!
1. I am wearing my comfy packing clothes (I am keepin'. it. real. well my hair is washed, I don't smell, and I have a liiiittle makeup on, but other than that, I'm keepin' it real in mah yoga pants (and a random shirt I found in my closet today). :))

2. I did not mean for it to be so long, but it is the first and only shot original, non-edited, complete silly me video.

3. You can make fun of me, but only to my face/comment/form of written communication to me. ;-)

4. You may do all of these "tips" already, so if you do, disregard the entire video. ;)

Things I forgot to say because I was so nervous!
1. We are traveling with three littles: ages 4 (boy. just turned 4, going on 8), almost 2 (boy. his birthday is tomorrow but don't age him by saying he's two already! ;)), and 5 months (girl. she's so old already! ;))

2. The reason I put all of the boys' clothes in individual storage bags is to keep them nice and neat, no piles of t-shirts, piles of shorts, having to sort through making sure you have what you want, and maybe things might scoot around and then mixing 4t and 2t clothes all. up. This way everything stays contained, and super quick to throw on outfits!

3. I also added some things, bags of each of their socks, tooth brushes/paste. And in the Extra Suitcase added bags of extra shampoo and conditioner to refill little bottles in our bath bag. (Annnd my mom had gotten the baggies on sale for 20/$1.00!)

4. I made little backpacks for each of the boys for the car ride too. They have a few cars/trucks, books, coloring book, crayons in a clear zip-pouch, books, stickers, a notebook to color in, and little binoculars, so far. :)

5. I'm still nervous, so I have no idea what else I'm forgetting....

Ok, you may now watch....



I'm sure y'all have some great packing for trips with little ones tips! Please feel free to share yours!

Friday, July 8, 2011

The Great NCF Roadtrip of 2011

It is official. It is happening. We're doin' it. We are adventuring. And we are excited! :)

We will be traveling around and across the US of A for almost 4 weeks! It will hereby be known as The Great NCF Roadtrip of 2011. Not, and not limited to, "NCF is Cray-zay," "What is NCF Thinking," or "Hahahahahaha."

With our three littles. Two boys - 4 and 2 years old (the day we arrive at our first destination) and baby girl - 5 months old. They'll do great! We're going to stick with that. ;) Oh sweet babies, I'm just praying they sleep well while we are road tripping it up.

I blogged about the potential trip here. It has changed a bit, our route out is different because we're going through Birmingham now! and it changed our route to go through Dallas!

Here is the adventure out!

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1. Vacay to Emerald Isle, NC with Hubby's family - 5.5 hr drive
2. Business trip to Charleston, SC - 5 hr drive
3. Business trip to Birmingham (Huntsville), AL - 7 hr drive
4. Dallas - 9 hr 15 min drive
5. Visiting fam in a suburb outside of Phoenix, AZ - 15 hr 15 min drive

We are also going to get to see a bunch of friends along the way! So far it's: Lyndsey and ALM on the way to AL! Staying with Vitafamiliae in Birmingham and seeing Amy and Trina while we're there. Now Dallas is on the map, well our map ;), it's been so crazy here, I haven't talked with any Dallasonians yet. And Lulu and Miss E in AZ!

Here is the adventure back!

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1. Suburbia, AZ to Oklahoma City or Tulsa - 14 hr drive
2. Little Rock, AR? - 5 hr drive
3. Nashville, TN - 5 hr drive
4. Home - 9 hr 15 min drive

I am so excited about seeing some wonderful Oklahoma girls and Heather in TN too! If I've missed anyone, let me know!

There may still be a couple little tweaks to the trip but that is the gist! :)

So here are some questions for YOU!

1. Any recs on where to stay in Dallas?
2. Or a great place in Oklahoma City or maybe Tulsa?
3. What music should we download for the trip so I don't have six songs on repeat the entire trip!! ;-) I can do it (wrote a bit about it a long time ago :)), but Hubby, I can burn him out on a good tune quick ;-).
4. Any recs or tips for our trip? I have a lot to post about what and how I've packed so far. As always love to hear any ideas! :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Boys' Birthday Party: The Boys, Guests, and Fun

Here is part 1, The Boys' Birthday Party: Theme, Cake, Decorations, Food, and Dets, just in case you missed it! :) (and the explanation about the cardboard box car extravaganza below!)

On to the par-tay :) We ended up having almost 40 guests and we had so many friends out of town or had some big family events. It's so hard with summer birthdays to have everyone in town, so I think we'll do the party earlier next year, even if it's a couple weeks before their birthdays. :) But we had SO much fun and it was such wonderful time with all of the wonderful family and friends who came!

Our sweet miracle love birthday boys! Oh my *goodness* we love and thank God *everyday* for these baby boys!!!

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The birthday boys with some of their fam and friends :)

Grandma/Mom-mo!! Oh we love Mom-mo!!! (hehe that's Little's way of calling her Grandma :))

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Poppop (my dad) in the middle balloon pic was in town for the party! We were all so excited he was able to celebrate in person with us.

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We just gave the boys the Cars movie that morning that they got to watch while we all finished setting up :) it was their first time seeing it. And then Hubby had the great idea to have it on for when their little guests arrived so they would have something fun to watch and hang until we started eating and playing.

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Littlest woke up from her nap and got to play :)

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Time to eat!

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Time for (most of :)) the littles to decorate their cardboard box cars!

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Race time! The kids just raced and raced and raced, it was so much fun to watch. Hubby instructed them on how to run the race, someone would ready set go them, they ran their little selves fast, then would line back up again and wait for someone to on your marks get set go them again, it was so cute!

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{the first race! :)}

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Some of the spectators :) and my Dad was wonderful and videotaped some fun footage!

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Bubbles! We bought this bubble machine at Wegmans and it is the best bubble machine ever :)

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Cake time!

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Me and ma big little boys! :)

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As a lot of the guests left, the little ones hopped in their little cars and walked to their cars to go home, it was SO cute! :) We had so much fun watching the boys at their birthday party and we were so thankful for and had so much fun with everyone who came to celebrate with us!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Boys' Birthday Party: Theme, Cake, Decorations, Food, and Dets

I have had so much fun planning for the boys' birthday party. I don't know if I will admit how loooong I have been planning/making everything ;) but I love that each year we/they will be able to look back at pictures and see what they were into at that time each year.

Theme:

Cars! A Car Party! Not the movie but just the fun of driving cars around, parking them, lining them up, again and again, having them "help people." They love anything that rolls... cars, trucks, trains, big ones, little ones, fancy ones, and just plain ole' solid color ones, that use just use every bit of imagination to make fun. :)

Here are the invitations and I made the return labels with the little cars on them to match. :)

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I ended up making them shirts too :)

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The Cake:

I have been so excited (and a little nervous) to make their special cake for their birthday each year. I love the tradition and hope they do too! (Here are the ones from the last year and the previous two years.)

I am so happy with the how it turned out. I love the grass around the roads, the puffy cloud and trees, and do the names look like they're written like clouds too? That was my goal ;). I made the little cars on it out of fondant, wheels and all!

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The Decorations:

I love love love all of the fun colors together. Light blue, yellow, orange, red, and light green. I just think they are great for a little one's party and they are such happy colors. :) I made pom poms for the dining room, kitchen and family room, the cupcake toppers, their happy birthday banner (I love the yellow polka dot ribbon :)), silverware wrappers, and the orange and green polka dot pompom trim runners (I made for their birthday last year). And Hubby's wonderful brother made the car images for me to decorate with! Thank you again Uncle J!

We made roads out of black cardstock and painted on the dotted lines! (Thank you for your great ideas to implement the design and for your help with so much of them Lauren (and Hubby, Dad, and Andrew!)

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The Food Table, Cupcake n' Candy Bar, and Drink Station:

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Watermelon car my *amazing* mom made!!! She even made a lemon steering wheel too! :)

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Cupcake 'n Candy Bar

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H'ordeuvres Table in the Kitchen

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Drink Station

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Favors:

I made the stickers to go on the favor bags. And each bag had a big bottle of bubbles, a little container of playdough, sidewalk chalk, a bouncy ball, and a little pull back car.

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The Activities:

I took boxes that held printer paper (my mom collected them all for us from work! they didn't mind :)) and turned them into cardboard box cars! I spray painted up and made two special ones for the birthday boys and one for each little guest to get to decorate themselves for some races in the front yard and to take home with them. Hubby was awesome and put a coat of primer on each one so the little ones could see all of their designs much better. And to reinforce the boxes and look like bumpers, I used soft duct tape! :) Thank you to Lauren and my Dad for helping with some of them too!

I cut out yellow headlights, red rear lights, license plates for their names, made wheels, and had crayons and stickers all ready for them to decorate with.

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And then we had a fantastic bubble machine that the kids had such a fun time with.

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{The birthday boys the next morning before opening presents :)}

It was such a fun day! Next post, the birthday boys, guests, and races in their cardboard box cars. :)

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