Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday Favorites: The Week of No Snow Edition

This week was back to the routine for us. Sunday night and Monday morning were kind of tough for our biggest boy (and his mama who felt emotional over her baby's struggles) but we managed to adjust quickly to going back to school. Phew. Unfortunately it was freezing and raining all week long. Except not freezing enough apparently because we never did get our wintry mix. Even though friends and family to the north received multiple days of snow and school closings it wasn't meant to be for us. Such a bummer because we were really hoping to see the white stuff! Maybe next year. Despite the weather, or lack thereof, we managed to have an overall good week.

Here are my favorite moments from our cold, wet week of no snow...

*Sunday morning matching sweetness! Sometimes I'm totally in awe that God saw fit to give me 3 boys. Especially when they're running wild and things are totally crazy around here! But also when I pose them in their matching cuteness for a picture. So thankful God blessed me with them!

*On Sunday afternoon we made a visit to see Terrell's Granny who is currently doing rehab for a broken hip and then headed over to the DQ for a sweet treat on a cold, rainy day. Yumminess!

*It's a rare thing for me to have to wake Layton up but when I do it's the most precious sight just before. Can't get enough of my sweet baby!  

*My school time went well with Austin this week and I think we're back on track. Yay! I'm excited to start a brand new theme with him next week... The 5 Senses! I was able to do lots of planning this week so hopefully I'm prepared and Austin will enjoy it.

*Every afternoon this week when it's time for the big boys to slow down and calm down, we've played a game of Yahtzee. They are so into it right now. Layton isn't a big fan since he has to watch from his jumpy but thankfully he always lets us get in a game or 2. =)

*Earlier this week the whole fam ventured out to "Art Night" at Garrison's school. The big boys got to paint a ceramic coffee cup and we made a stop by the Book Fair to pick out some new books. It was a pretty fun family outing!

*Totally unprompted and completely on his own, Garrison wrote and illustrated this story about a race car. I just love it!

*Layton is getting fast at pushing things around! And he is so proud of himself! He also really enjoys his big brothers pushing him around on his riding toys. Never a dull moment around here. =)

Today we're off to the pediatrician for Garrison's 6 year well-check plus Layton has another little check-up too. Then we have a fairly low-key weekend coming up and plan to enjoy it to the fullest. Happy Friday!!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Another Day in the Life of Us

Bright and early yesterday morning, out of the blue, I decided to make yesterday a day to record for a day in the life post. I hadn't done one of these since I started my new job and my last one was in September so the time was right. I love and appreciate these so much. They are definitely worth the time and effort!

Even though I left out the details of our bad news about our house in Covington (another post for another day), which put a damper on the 2nd half of our day for sure, I included every other detail I could remember.

Here's a look at the happenings of our day start to finish on yesterday...

I started the day at 5:15 as I always do on school mornings and was ready around 6:00. Then I did my quiet time, took Bailey out and fed her, and started on breakfast before waking the big boys up at 6:35. The start to our day looked really promising until everything for my middle man went downhill at breakfast. This is him under the table mid-meltdown... something about his cereal and muffin. Sigh. Being 3 is emotional and HARD. And don't forget emotional. Gracious.

 Thankfully daddy came to his rescue and all was well in the land of Austin again. Yay. =)

While the big boys had breakfast, Layton woke up pretty unhappy (normally if he's content we wait to get him up after Baby A arrives) so I made his bottle while Terrell got him up and changed his diaper and wet pjs... hence the unhappiness. Then we traded. Terrell took over with the big boys and got them dressed and ready (technically Garrison gets himself dressed but Terrell still brushes his hair and makes sure his teeth get brushed, etc) and I gave Layton his bottle. As Layton was finishing up his bottle around 7:15 or so, Baby A arrived.

By 7:30, Terrell and Garrison were heading out the door to school and work and I was busy in the kitchen making breakfast for the babies. Austin played with superheros and rescue bots and cars while I made breakfast and fed the babies. Yay for Austin getting in some unstructured independent play! I was done feeding the babies by 8:00 so I moved them both to the living room to play while I cleaned up the kitchen and started a load of the boys' clothes. Then, by 8:30 both babies were down for their morning naps. Austin asked to watch a show while I put them to bed so while he finished up his show I read some of my favorite blogs and straightened up a little.

As soon as Team Umizoomi went off, Austin immediately said he was ready for school! I haven't heard those words in a while so I was pretty thrilled. This week we've just been doing activities or reviews of things we've done before. I'm currently in the plan and prep stage for our next theme. =)

We started "school" by him spelling and tracing his name. Then we played "War" with cards numbered 1-20. He's got comparing numbers down and is doing really well learning to write his name!

After finishing "school" Austin got to choose what he wanted to do with me and of course he chose to play games. We played Yahtzee Jr twice. The game of choice lately.

After finishing up Yahtzee I encouraged Austin to pick something to do that he can't do while the babies are awake. Something that involves small pieces or building something he doesn't want knocked down. He decided to do some drilling with our design and drill set. I helped him get his picture set up and then he went to work drilling. This was a mostly independent activity so I was able to sneak away to check my calendar and to-do list and put clothes in the dryer.

At 10:00 I get Baby A's bottle ready, wake up both babies, change diapers, and then feed Baby A. After that we have about an hour long stretch of play time. The living room gets covered in toys and this is my get on the floor and play time with them. Austin isn't super impressed with this time and is just spinning his wheels big time, so he typically always gets to watch another show. Which he did yesterday as well. Once Austin's show went off he picked out board books for me to read and we have a little story time with the babies and read to them and sing to them. It's my longest time of the day (Austin's too, haha) but I think it's a pretty fun time for the babies.

Around 11:15 I get the babies "contained" and head to the kitchen to make everybody's lunch. We usually eat around 11:30. Lunch is always really busy but everybody is happy and thankful to be fed so it's all good. =)

After lunch Austin has to clean up any of his messes/toys that aren't put away and then he gets to play on the Kindle or Leapster while I clean up the kitchen and get the babies put down for naps. (The babies play in the living room while I clean.) Once I'm done cleaning up I try to have a clean up time with the babies. I sing the clean up song and they watch me clean up. Haha. Then I get diapers changed and both babies down for naps around 12:20 or so. Yesterday I think they both were asleep by 12:30ish. Then it's Austin's turn and he is hopefully asleep by 1;00. We do early naps so everybody can hopefully get in good naps before it's time to pick Garrison up.

Naptime is what I consider my "planning period". Ha! Yesterday I didn't do a lot of planning but I did fold a huge load of clothes and watched one of my favorite shows I watch without Terrell...

At 2:00 I wrap up my "planning" and make the big boys' snack, empty the dishwasher, make the babies' bottles, and prepare to get everybody up. Yesterday Baby A woke up first so after he took his bottle I got Layton up and then Austin was up shortly after that. By 2:40 I had everybody's jackets on and we were loading up to go pick up Garrison. So thankful to have a car big enough to do this!

I snapped this picture of the backseats as soon as we got home. 2 rear facing babies in the middle and 2 big boys in the back. =)

The boys came in and ate their snack while Baby A played and I gave Layton his bottle. After snack time the big boys get to watch a show (usually Clifford or Wild Kratts) and I go through Garrison's book bag and empty his lunch box. Around 3:45 Baby A's mom arrives and the big boys' show ends. Then it's homework time. Thankfully Garrison's teacher doesn't give homework on Wednesdays so we just went over some sight words and then it's wild and crazy play time! I try my best to let them play hard for a stretch after school.

My mother-in-law came over to pick up the big boys for choir around 4:40 yesterday afternoon since the weather was messy and so I wouldn't have to get Layton out. While I love getting out of the house when I can, it's definitely a blessing having Nana pick up the big boys on days I need her!

Layton and I enjoyed our one-on-one time and then I got started on supper. Chili and bake potatoes!

While I was trying to load some things in the dishwasher, this happened... for the first time ever! He loves himself a dishwasher. =)

 Then this happened... another new trick!

Terrell picked the boys up from choir and once they got home around 6:00 we got ready to eat supper. The perfect meal for the weather! After supper we let the boys play and then watch something before bed and we wrapped up the day with the boys by reading together on the couch. Layton and I listened while I gave him his bottle.
All the littles in the house were in bed by 7:45 so I worked some on this blog and then we watched the Hawks and talked a lot about our house selling woes. I think I was in bed around 10:20.

And that was another day in the life of us. The Selph fam had a pretty normal, good day. Even a day that contained disappointing news wasn't too bad.

But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out it's roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; it's leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. Jeremiah 17: 7-8

Meditating on these verses and trusting in the The Lord today even though His plan is unclear! Happy Thursday! 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Layton's 1st Birthday Party

On Saturday we celebrated our baby boy's 1st birthday! And I'm happy to report that everything went smoothly and turned out really cute and fun! Even the birthday boy (who didn't really know what was going on) seemed to enjoy himself. =) Other than a boycott of his morning nap, everything went off without a hitch. Yay!!

The theme for Layton's party took a while to come to me. I really wanted something 1st birthday appropriate (which I know is up to each individual's interpretation... so 1st birthday appropriate to me) and I really wanted something that stood out as "the one". We actually thought we had settled on a theme until I came across a "Frogs, Snails, and Puppy Dog Tails" cake totally by accident. And as soon as I saw that cake this theme tugged at my heart and I knew this was going to be the one. It was meant to be! I mean what little boys are made of lives here! And totally fits 1st birthday appropriateness to a T for me. I was thrilled. =)This theme wasn't the easiest but it was pretty perfect for our 3rd baby boy and his very 1st birthday. I loved it start to finish.

My awesome friend and go-to, personal graphic designer designed the invitation for us again. We were just in LOVE! I absolutely treasure all 3 of my babies' 1st birthday invites with the 3 little pictures of sweetness oozing right off of them. Thanks again Megan!!!

Family picture before the party! 

Our colors were blue, brown, and green (like the invite), but unfortunately we found out Saturday morning our balloon order wouldn't contain any brown. Boo. I know that would've been super cute, but the blue and lime green combo didn't disappoint so everything turned out A-okay. The foyer table held the matte of Layton's monkey pictures, his baby book, and his framed invitation.

Dining room table and centerpiece... which I ordered from Etsy and loved a lot. =)

The kitchen table centerpiece was something my parents had done for all 3 boys at Buggy Days. It's a special name keepsake of the root, meaning, origin, and personality traits of that particular name.   

My baby in his overalls plus a puppy dog. =)

The cakes! So adorable and soo yummy! 

We fed everyone sandwiches, chicken nuggets from CFA, fruit and dip, and chips and dip to kick off the party. Layton was super tired due to refusing his nap that morning but thankfully AnAn was able to keep him happy at the table until we were ready to open presents. And by happy at the table I mean constantly giving him more and more food. He ate and ate and ate until it was time for presents. He just doesn't seem to ever get full!

Presents time!

He did really good with participating in the present opening process in the beginning. He smiled, tore some wrapping paper, looked at his cards...but after a while he kind of lost interest and crawled away and big brothers had to step in and take over. =) After everything was opened though he was pretty smitten over all the fun toys he got. Yay!

We went straight from opening presents to getting ready for cake. (It should be noted the highchair Layton is sitting in was mine as a baby. That would make it 31 years old and still going strong. Ha.) Layton wasn't too impressed with everyone singing to him. Haha! Thankfully he never burst into tears even though I think he wanted to at one point. He went from overwhelmed and intimidated to dazed and confused. Poor baby was so tired by this point he just didn't know what to think about a crowd of 19 family members singing to him. =)

Baby boy might not have been impressed with everybody singing Happy Birthday but he was most definitely impressed with his cake! He sampled it right away without needing any prompting or encouragement at all. He licked his fingers and enjoyed lots and lots of icing right from the start. =)

Eventually, we helped him "smash" into it, but for the most part he consumed what he wanted all on his own and loved every bite. 

He finally got a little tired of his hands being covered in icing and just tired in general so we got him some of his water juice and wrapped up the smash cake fun. Meanwhile his big brothers helped themselves... notice all the missing dots... 

Layton's 1st birthday was lots of fun and memorable for all of us. Especially our party of 5! We loved celebrating with our littlest member and watching him enjoy all the fun that came with his 1st birthday! Our big boys were very involved and just the sweetest big brothers during the party.

We are SO thankful for Granna and Papa hosting Layton's party at their house and for our amazing families being there to help us celebrate. First birthdays are most special for the birthday kid's family and we have the best ever! Thanks for loving and celebrating our babies the way you do!!

Happy 1st Birthday again to our sweet Layton Thomas!! We love you more than you know!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday Favorites: Winter Break Edition

We have had a really fun, really Winter break. It's been freeeezing here! Which means we've been laying low. We've stayed home most of the week and read a lot of books, played a lot of games, and watched a lot of movies. It's been a pretty great week if I do say so myself. A break from the school routine has been really good for all of us. A chance to slow down and be together more is very much needed just when those school breaks roll around. And I'm so thankful I can take full advantage of them with my kiddos. Such a blessing!!

Here's a look at my favorites from our week of Winter Break...

On Sunday we spent the whole day with Terrell's side of the family celebrating my mother-in-law's birthday. We went to a jumpy place, a fro-yo place, and then wrapped things up back at Nana and Pops' house for supper. The boys had a ball! It was a super fun and kid friendly way to celebrate... and the perfect day for us because of the long weekend with daddy and no school the next day. Yay for family birthday fun!

*President's Day with daddy was low key and oh so wonderful. =) We slept late. (Late being 7:00. Haha.) We visited Terrell's Granny. We went grocery shopping as a family. We played Yahtzee Jr. (1 of 237 games this week) We cooked a big, warm supper. Yay, yay, yay all around!

*We've stayed in the majority of the week and my big boys have loved all the extra play time they've had together. This break has been so nice for all of us. Imaginations have been in full swing. This was a hot wheel obstacle course they created. This occupied them all. morning. long.

*One afternoon this week everybody was up from naps by 2:30 (eeesh) and we were desperate for something to do to pass the time as the afternoon was dragging. And it had to be Layton-friendly. Baby brother was awake and into everything. And we had already exhausted our TV time for the day plus had a movie night coming after supper... so that just wasn't an option. So we read like 10 of our favorite books. In a row. While Layton climbed all over us. It was pretty fun... and a little exhausting for mama. Haha. But it was just what we needed... a good 40 minutes of reading to 2 attentive boys and 1 busy boy on a cold afternoon. =)
*Speaking of reading... Garrison read a book to Austin one morning while I made breakfast. Pete the Cat Plays Ball. Squeal!! My mama teacher heart overflows with gladness!

*We visited daddy at work for the first time and had a lunch date with him. So fun and such a special treat in the middle of the week!

*The big boys have had a movie night like every single night this week. Why not? We're out of school. It's Winter and freezing cold. We have no other plans. Sounds good to me! =)

*The hubs and I were watching Blue Bloods one night this week when I had to make Terrell pause it so I could snap a pic. Linda Reagan's hair is just my favorite. I'm thinking I might want to try this do. I'm a short hair girl and really need a cut I'm in love with... which I haven't been able to find since before letting my hair grow while I was pregnant with Layton. Bet my hair wouldn't look much like this professionally styled hair-do. But I so love it and really want to try it! Hmmmm...

*Our Sunday School lesson on Sunday was about Hezekiah and this week during my quiet time I've been reading more about him and his life. It's been so good. I've loved reading about his faithfulness to the Lord and the way God used him to bring about revival. And I love, love, love my study Bible.

*We braved the cold yesterday morning and ventured out to a special Dr. Seuss storytime. We so enjoyed watching the story of The Cat in the Hat! The big boys loved it and it was the perfect little outing for us.

Favorite not-pictured moments... Finishing Layton's baby book! Woohoo!! My mom got me this baby book while I was pregnant with Garrison and after finishing his I decided I would complete the same book for all of my babies. It isn't over the top so it's totally doable if you're intentional about it. Yay for our 3rd baby boy having a baby book! =)

AND... Enjoying our new ride!! We haven't been in the car much this week, but when we have it's been pretty wonderful. Backseat drama hasn't totally ceased to exist (the surburban isn't a miracle worker), but it has been a sweet, spacious, comfortable experience every single time we enter the silver sub. =)

And I think this was possibly my longest Friday Favorites ever. Haha. Clearly I had lots more time on my hands this week than I normally do. Ha! The week off and lots of down time made for several opportunities for me to remember to capture my favorite moments. Yay. =)

This weekend we're looking forward to celebrating Layton's 1st birthday with our families! Tomorrow's the big day!! Party planning busyness has been going on non-stop since December so I hope it all comes together smoothly and that our baby boy and families enjoy a fun little celebration. Happy Friday!!