Bundle up, enjoy a little TV while we all still have power and save the PB&J for later! I hope you all have a snuggly snow day. I’m packing a bag to slowly creep into work soon.
Feels a little strange that it’s 60 degrees out and it’s December, but horray for Christmastime!
I’m excited to get into some Christmas traditions a little more, now that the kids are a little bigger.
We went to the Junior Deputy tree lot on Rodney Parham yesterday and picked out our first “real” tree since Ava was a newborn. She led the charge, picking one of the shortest but fullest specimens on the lot, with a definite point at the top to hold our star.
After a little work prying her away from electronic distractions, we all had a great time decorating it up. Kayla and Kendall did a pretty good job helping too, and we only had one ornament casualty. (Not bad, for us.)
I also took a chance and got out the most special Christmas thing I own, my grandma’s ceramic tree, which must be from the 60s or so. I used to spend a lot of time at her house every year, moving the little colored plugs around, until I got it just how I wanted it. Crossing my fingers that it stays intact in our wild household!
And then one more thing appeared this morning …
This is our first time with an Elf on the Shelf, but Ava loved her teacher’s classroom elf so much last year that she broke me down. I’m a little afraid my creativity isn’t going to hold out on this one, but we could definitely use a little help with behavior after several days off filled with hitting, screaming, crying and whatnot. I’ll take any ideas!
Just off the top of my head, here’s some things I’m thankful for this year:
1. An exceptional, loving husband who always puts in 100 percent to make me and the girls happy
2. Ava and her ever-present sass, which I’m sure will serve her well later in life
3. Kayla and her sweet, sensitive soul — especially when she kisses the blow-up Santa at Kroger and hugs it goodbye
4. Kendall and her spunk, coupled with her complete lack of volume-control, just like her Aunt Nerd
5. Having a sturdy, warm home to keep us safe and sheltered from the cold, rainy yuck outside
6. A reliable mommobile, which happens to be a kick-A Swagger Wagon. (Whoa, this guy could play Daddy in a Lifetime movie about us …)
7. Stable employment for both parents in our household, which I most definitely don’t take for granted
8. The most adorable, bacon-eating nephew ever (and his parents, esp. for sending me pics like this)
9. Aunt Nerd, who always understands and can bring a great big laugh to any situation
10. My mom and Grandpa Larry, and Oldie — who always welcome our craziness back home without a blink
11. Snuggles, for tolerating all kinds of kid offenses and Princess, too
12. Princess, to bringing a little playfulness into our lives (despite her continued insistence on peeing inside)
13. More truly wonderful, caring, good-hearted friends than I can list. Love them all!
14. Diet Coke, keeping me powered throughout the day. And sometimes tea, too.
15. Pizza, which always fills bellies and keeps everyone happy
I could go on and on and on, but I’ll stop at this point. Feel free to share what you’re thankful for, too. I’d love to hear!
The kids are super hot on Doc McStuffins right now — the show on Disney Junior where the little girl doctors up broken toys.
All of a sudden this past weekend, Ava decided she could no longer live without a Doc Mobile. On the show, Doc’s daddy helped her put together a cart she drags around that has all her toy fixing tools. So, of course, this equated to Ava needing her daddy to help her make a Doc Mobile. Immediately. (My “hey, let’s wait for Christmas” attempts — so I could look for a real one — were shot down pretty quickly.)
Thankfully, I have a handy man at home.
Within an hour or so, he and Ava crafted this together:
It doesn’t look a bit like the real Doc Mobile, a glorious purple cart with all sorts of compartments. But some unused lawnmower tires, part of a cardboard box and some wood scraps have made our little girl pretty darn happy this week.
She’s colored it up. Carefully decorated it with stickers. And has been carting around all kinds of stuffed animals. The first one “fixed” had “wetasitis” — it was wet from having to be washed after a bout with a green marker.
On and off over the past few years, I’ve daydreamed a bit about what it would really be like to be a stay at home mom. When I was pregnant with the twins, I seriously gave it a thought — until I realized that if I wanted to keep up our two-car, scrimping but not scraping lifestyle, it just wasn’t going to happen.
But every now and then, I get a snippet of how the other half lives.
Today, the twins’ daycare was closed for Veterans Day. And we had a glorious day together while Ava was at school and aftercare.
I went to the gym, where they went to the daycare to play for awhile. Ran an errand with ease. We did tons of laundry together. Baked some more banana carmel bread. About to do some dishes. Oh, such good stuff.
If only it could be like this every day, we’d have the cleanest house. We’d eat so much healthier. I’d get so much done.
But I’m sure it’s not really like this all the time, right, momfriends? Or is it?
We had some overripe bananas to use up this weekend, which almost always means making banana bread. Just for fun, I threw in some carmel chips we had laying around — and it was such a hit!
The kids gobbled this down after dinner and again at breakfast. I’m thinking the rest of it will be great after dinner tonight with a scoop of ice cream, a few slices of fresh banana and a drizzle of chocolate sauce.
I use the recipe from my trusty Better Homes and Garden New CookBook, a slightly updated version of the book our moms and grandmas used.
- 1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
- 2/3 c. sugar
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2-3 medium bananas
- 1/3 c. butter
- 2 tbs. milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 c. chopped nuts (which I subbed in this case for Kraft carmel chips)
- This is not in the book, but I also add 1 tbs. real vanilla for kicks
Combine 1 cup of the flour, the sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Then add mashed banana, butter and milk. Beat on low until blended, then on high for 2 min. Add eggs and remaining flour; beat until blended. Stir in nuts (or carmel chips … or chocolate chips … or even blueberries or raspberries; all work great).
Pour batter into a greased loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes.
Cool and enjoy!
Here are some of the creative, adorable entries from the Promenade at Chenal’s BOO-tiful kids costume contest on Saturday. There’s some really great ones here if you’re working on last-minute ideas!
Other activities coming up at the Promenade at Chenal are the Friday opening of their newest store, Lululemon Athletica, and their annual Holiday Celebration of Lights on Nov. 30, kicking off Christmas shopping in full gear. More on that soon!
NOTE: This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.
There’s a chill in the air, and it’s a great sunny day for fall activities.
We’re headed out with the kids to the Promenade at Chenal for the final Farmer’s Market West this year. I’m hoping to find some lettuce that would go well in a Greek salad, and hopefully a little zucchini and squash, too.
Making the day even better, Local Lime and Big Orange will be giving out samples and a chance to win one of two gift card giveaways.
The BOO-tiful Kids Costume Contest is going on until 1:30, too. Can’t wait to see all the cute kiddos dressed up in their sweet-and-scary gear! The twins have been shouting “Happy Halloween!” all morning long already. There’s still time to register when you get there — and the proceeds will go toward Arkansas Rice Depot. And there’s a super great lineup of prizes, too.
See you out there!
Great article in today’s Family section of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, written by Little Rock Mamas alumnae and my fellow twin supermom Melissa Tucker.
A subscription is required to read the article, but I have to say I was surprised about how many other local media moms have multiples, including TV personalities Jancey Sheats and Melissa Gates-Dunbar. Does news and adrenaline breed babies?
I also loved the nugget about the mom of three not having time to go to the bathroom — I was SO there. At least now I can go, as long as I don’t mind the company …