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Thursday, May 26, 2016

More Birthday Fun

It is birthday time in our house!  This particular day we celebrated the two youngest girls.  We put our usual garlands up and decorated the house for the girls to find in the morning.

Birthday Cereal
According to David's family tradition, each kid gets to pick their birthday cereal, no matter how sugary, and they get to eat it on their birthday, to share with all the other siblings.  Isabelle chose Lucky Charms.

The new sand.
Oma had gifted Hannah a sandbox for Christmas and grandma gifted Hannah the sand to go in it.  So we took the box outside, found some room for it and the girls LOVED it!  So did the bigger girls.  :-)

Abby is just so great about playing with her younger siblings.

The man recording it all.

Grandma enjoying the outdoors

Hanny also scored a baby swing.  Uncle Chris giving her a ride in it.  She literally sat in it for hours, even when no one was swinging her.  She just loved it.

Hannah, taking her swinging very seriously.

I asked Isabelle what kind of a cake she'd want for her birthday.  We browsed Pinterest and I was going to limit the selection when she picked the most simplest of cakes EVER!  Yeah!  All I had to get was the blue sugar rock candy.  We already had Elsa, so this was easy, peasy.  She loved it.

Isabelle had literally been waiting for months.  Since November she had been asking me weekly when it was going to be her birthday.  Weekly.  Two nights before, she couldn't handle it anymore and got really cranky.  
The day of her birthday was torture for her to wait until everyone was there.  Thankfully my mom is on German time and she got to hear a bunch of German's singing "Happy birthday" off key.  She also got to unwrap her Bird Bingo, Primary Science Lab, Ariel Magiclip Princess and a pattern book from Oma.  
Hanny got her outdoor baby swing which was a hit.
The girls spent the rest of the day doing science and playing bird bingo.  Isabelle held on tight to her new princess.
After much waiting, Olive and Rosie finally showed up and that was by far the best part of the day.  They played outside and had a blast together.  They made a clubhouse in the hydrangeas, being led by the fearless Abigail who handled all the cutting away of my beloved flowers.  :-(  This is why you check on your kids and don't assume they were talking about the wild roses by the shed.
For dinner Isabelle got to pick what she wanted and she decided on drumsticks, corn and mashed potatoes.  Dave was quiet happy about that.
On Isabelle's wishlist: stufties and she wanted people to pick which ones (Olive and Rosie got her a Zebra - Zoe and a Tiger - Tundra), a barking and moving dog from Grandma along with candy and matching tutu dresses for Isabelle and Hanny, Berenstein Bear books from Mom & Dad along with an antfarm with book, Berenstein Bears phonic set, Jim Weiss CDs (Shakespeare and Arabian Nights), A Mercer Meyer book, a bird toy from Uncle Mike, roller skates from Grampy, a matching fabric doll from Abby (a set for Hannah and Isabelle) and her favorite Magiclip princess Aurora from Nathan.
Hanny scored as well, getting sand from Grandma along with candy and a book and a puzzle, little puppies from Nathan (Calico Critter babies), fuzzy animals from Uncle Mike, sandbox toys from uncle Chris, CD 1 and 2 from Hannah's favorite music from Mom and Dad (Hidden in my Heart by Jay Stoker), a Tag Junior with 5 books, a little girl piano from Grampy and Playdoh from Auntie Megan and Uncle Rusty.
In addition, the kids were gifted by the Matsons and Staffords.  So many presents for such little ones.  But most of all, so much love for such lovely little ladies.

Birthday Fun

For Isabelle and Hannah we had a combined birthday party this month.  It's been a rough month, we were in the middle of baseball season, so for this year, that is just what we did.  I love how easy-going birthdays are this time of year as long as it isn't raining.  We just open the back door, and there go all the kids, including dog.  They all have a blast and barely stop to eat.

Isabelle on the swing, Olive, Rosie on the swing, Hannah, the dog, Abby

Best present of the day - empty cardboard roll from the wrapping paper.   :-)

Abby, Isabelle being pushed by Olive, Rosie and Hannah

Apparently leaning over everything is twice the fun.

It may look weird to us but she is having fun.

That is the extend of Hannah's swinging right now.

The girls actually cut some cutters and made themselves a clubhouse in between my two huge hydrangeas, right next to the shed.  They thought it was pretty awesome and cut away. 
I love how they are bonding so well, Abby and Olive and then Rosie and Isabelle.  where will Hannah fit in?  Maybe we'll get another little cousin....  :-)

Scientists Extraordinaire

While the big kids are doing chemistry in homeschooling this year, Isabelle had kind of caught the bug.  We are doing a lot of experiments and that gets the older two all excited, which then in return makes the younger ones curious.  For Isabelle's birthday, my mom got her a little kids' chemistry kit that is totally awesome and simple to use.  Isabelle has been having so much fun with it.

Here she is on her birthday, mixing water tinted by food coloring.  She could have done this for hours!

Little scientist carefully mixing potions

At first Isabelle thought this was a magic potion set...  

Isabelle is very meticulous.

Hannah trying out the new magnifying glass.

Haha.  Best face!

Glorious Flowers

I'm not sure what is up with plants this year, but all of my plants are just bursting with flowers/berries!  It's craziness in my gardens.  Not going to complain though...

Wednesday, May 25, 2016


This is the first year where during baseball season we actually invited friends over to our house.  In years past, we usually had one family, the O. family (Krissy, Nate, Grace and Mike) who had come to our house.  Then obviously Treuce and his family.  But in general, baseball friends were at the baseball fields.  This year, Dave and Chris coached with the same guys they coached with last year and the four of them can talk baseball for hours, leaving us girls freezing and mosquito-stung.  One night, having made Pho earlier in the day, I decided to just have everyone come over to our house.  So everyone left, one person brought drinks, another brought pizza for all the kids.  I ended up making chicken schnitzel and spaetzle for some of our food-enthusiastic friends.  It was a great evening and it has been repeated on an almost weekly basis.  :-)
It's been a lot of fun and the kids are loving every minute of it.  Hannah sleeps right through all the noise, and even Copper gets to play with Tanya's dog Bella.   Copper and Bella are best friends now and they play literally the whole time they are here.  It's a win-win for everyone.

Gabe, Dave and Anthony
Crystal, Kriston and Tanya
Nathan S. and his brother Trent, my Nathan and Aidan.  Logan is missing on the picture.

Just One Reason Why It's Great to Have a Big Sister

Abby is very crafty.  She loves to make clay figurines/charms, color, draw, snip and glue, etc.  She makes some fabulous things.  While Isabelle often times does not have the patience yet to sit for hours, she sometimes likes to join Abby.  She admires the things her sister comes up with.

On this particular day, they were glancing at the charms book.  Somehow they went on to coloring and Abby taught Isabelle how to make this picture:

Isabelle's copy of Abby's pictures.

Abby's original

Abby helped Isabelle with the bird's wings, feet and tail.  All else Isabelle just copied Abby on.  Amazing, uh?  I thought that was really impressive. But then again, I'm just their mom, I'm biased....

Hannah's Days

Here is what a typical day in Hanny's life looks like.  

The largest parts of her day involve playing with the Disney Magiclip Princess dolls.  She loves these and so does Isabelle.  They had their own agreement as to whom played with which.  However, after Isabelle got new ones for her birthday, it has been a struggle every day.  

Hanny loves lining the dresses up on their Melissa & Doug castle.

And then she lines up all the princesses and other guests.  She dresses and re-dresses the girls and now they even talk and interact.  She truly doesn't get tired.  There isn't too much else she plays, other than her sandbox and going outside.  

Reading is a big part of Hannah's day.  She has the most books of any of my babies.  This is one of her favorites:  A fabric alphabet book given to us by the M. family, made by Abby's old art teacher.  It is fabulous and Hannah loves it.

Some other favorites.  The "In The Rain Forest" is a touch-and-feel book and she loves to find animals in there.  Baby Farm Animals is probably her second favorite book.  She also loves all the Bear books.

This is by far Hanny's favorite music CD.  And probably one of mine.  So peaceful and it sings scriptures with beautiful music.  Of all three in this series, it is my favorite.

Happy Girl

I love this happy girl.  Her smile is contagious.  And she has the best smile ever.

Nightime with Isabelle

Bedtime with Isabelle is a wild card.  It can be tears, excitement, too much excitement or just anything in between.  This particular night she was in such a good mood but had way too much energy to go to bed.  I gave her some time to play around in my room while I finished laundry to give her some time to burn energy.  This is her: