Friday, May 29, 2015

Friday Favorites: 1st Week of Summer Edition

Our first week of summer has been both a huge success and a huge challenge. Yay for the successes! Despite our challenges I have been sooo thankful for how well our first week has gone. The big boys are having so much fun together already and are getting along GREAT, and mama has been pretty laid back with our summer days so far. Double yay!

Here are my favorite happenings from our 1st week of summer...

*Friday was our 1st official day of summer so the big boys and I sat down together to make some summer goals. This is the very first summer I've asked for their input and what they'd like to do. During previous summers I've been very organized and structured and had lots and lots of plans to keep us busy and having fun. This summer all that jazz just isn't going to work. We have too much big stuff happening. So I asked my big boys what they'd like to make sure we do this summer. At first they only said really big things but eventually with hints and suggestions from me, they were able to come up with a good, well rounded list. =) This is now on our fridge and they've already done a few of them!

*Garrison's T-ball team winning the championship was a definite favorite! Our first ever big team celebration was so fun!

*Finding out Baby O is a girl!!! So excited for all things girl headed our way!

*I've been getting Garrison to read a book or two to me everyday while Austin and Layton are napping and one afternoon after Austin woke up, he read his book to Austin. It was the sweetest. =)

*This little man has been ON THE GO. He is one busy boy! I think I'd forgotten just how busy this age is and how much they can get into. He gives me a daily workout for sure! Even though he wears me out, he is the cutest thing and I can't get enough of him!

*The big boys have spent quite a bit of time at their table coloring and making cards this week. This table used to be in their room before we moved to the rental house and was probably used weekly for special crafts or a special picnic, etc. Since it's in the kitchen area in the rental house it's used daily. Multiple times a day. All the time. It was Garrison's homework area during the school year. Mine and Austin's school area everyday. They color and craft at this table every single day. So we may need to make space for it in our kitchen at the new house... Hmmmm... Decisions, decisions.

*We made cloud dough this week! This was in the plans for me and Austin to do together as part of our Ocean/Beach theme that we didn't get to. So we did it this week with Garrison! It's messy but super fun. They used scoops and measuring cups and baby spoons to play in it while the babies napped one morning. I'm sure we'll be playing in it again soon. =)

*Oh, All-Stars. We just aren't feeling the love from you at the moment. Big sigh. While I am thrilled my baby was chosen and excited for him to experience this first, the practices and upcoming tournament are just way too much. When did T-ball become an Olympic sport?? It has been both a huge and exhausting commitment and sacrifice for the whole family. Thankfully we *hope* we've reached a turning point. Because practicing every single night for 2 hours just isn't working. For any of us. Our family of 5 has been together for approximately 15 minutes a day all week. Boo. We did decide to go to practice together on Wednesday night. And even though Terrell and Garrison were on the field the whole time, it was nice all being there together and getting to watch Garrison and daddy. I'm praying this turns into a better experience for everybody... especially my biggest and his teammates.

*While our evenings this week haven't been the best, our days have been awesome! These 2 brothers are loving all of their play time together. Fighting bad guys has never been so fun!

*And we can't forget about baby brother who loves getting in on the action too! =)

*The big boys have also played lots and lots of games together this week. I've played a few with them and they've played some on their own. The current favorite is War. =)

*Getting this sweet baby up from his naps every day is one of my favorite things! He is always so happy to see me and so excited to see what his brothers are up to.

Sometimes he's so excited he just picks up Scout and gives him a big hug! =)

We are so thankful it's Friday and so thankful for our great 1st week of summer! Even though our evening schedule has been challenging, disappointing, and exhausting, we have been BLESSED with some great 1st days of summer. I am counting my blessings big time!! This weekend we have a special T-ball banquet, yet another All-Star practice, and we hope some good quality family time! Happy Friday!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Memorial Day Weekend 2015

We had a really wonderful Memorial Day weekend. It was exciting, fun, and full of celebrations! So thankful for the sacrifices of so many so we can enjoy the freedoms we do here in the USA!

The excitement of the weekend kicked off for us on Saturday with Garrison's last regular season game... and it was a big one! Our team was undefeated and this game determined if we would be named champions or if we'd have to play in a play-off game to determine the champions. I was crazy nervous for a T-ball game!!

My #5 is the lead-off hitter and I was able to capture this shot of him walking up to bat with a little brother watching closely right behind the fence. So sweet!

It totally took me back to this moment back in 2013... My #4 up to bat (coach-pitched in wee-ball... craziness!) with little 19 month old Austin watching his big brother. They were both so little!!

After a really close start to the game, we were able to hold the other team and win 1st place!!! It was sooo exciting!! And nerve wracking! Gracious. Garrison had a GREAT game! He made 3 different plays/outs at 2nd base and had a good game at the plate and drove in some runs. Even though I was waaay too nervous for a T-ball game, it was a really fun game to watch!

We're super thankful for the amazing season the Red Trojans had...and for coach daddy... who was pretty awesome this season too. =) Now it's on to All-Stars for my biggest. Not sure why All-Stars are necessary for T-ball but we're excited nonetheless. Ha. Because Terrell was assistant coach for the "T-ball champions", he will also be coaching the All-Star team. So baseball continues for the Selph household for a bit longer. =)
After finishing up at the ball fields and getting everyone in the bath and cleaned up, it was time for AnAn and Frankie's big gender reveal!

They went to a local place called "Sneak a Peek" and the whole family went in to see Baby O together! It was such a neat place! And such a special experience!! We all found out together............................................. IT'S A GIRL!!!!!

It was sort of shocking for us to hear those 3 words!! Ha! Even though we really had no idea or feeling boy or girl, with us, it's always a boy.... so I think deep down I must've thought Baby O was boy! Hahaha! We are thrilled for the proud parents and so excited to meet our niece, Piper Caroline, in November!

And I must elaborate on the name. =) Piper is my mom's maiden name and my middle name, and Carol is my mom's middle name, hence Caroline. Such a sweet, special, southern, family name. We can't wait to meet her!!

After the appointment we all went out to eat together at our fave Mexican restaurant and Terrell and I made a quick run by the store to pick up a pink balloon and a congratulations cookie cake. We had the best time celebrating the news of Piper Caroline. Even though a boy would've been awesome because hello boy cousins and fitting right in, we are ECSTATIC over adding a girl to the mix. Finally! =)

Time for some family pics!

Sunday was another great day! We snapped a picture of our patriotic babies before going to church where we enjoyed such a special service. Then we came home for naps for the whole fam (glorious!) before heading over to my parents' house for a Memorial Day grill out and get-together.

We had so much fun! Granna and Papa prepared a delicious feast for us and the boys had a blast playing with water guns and running through a beach ball sprinkler!

And some tractor riding was involved too. =)

It was so good to get together with family and talk and laugh and let the boys play. It was the best. =)

On Monday we all slept late and tried to clean the house before going over to Terrell's parents' house for another Memorial Day get-together. We were treated to another oh so yummy meal and the boys had lots of fun playing outside at Nana's and Pops'. There was a little swinging going on and a LOT of batting practice going on. =) We had a great time and made it home in time for naps. Yay for extra rest!

After a solo trip to the grocery store, extra play time for the boys with daddy, leftovers for supper, throwing everybody in the bath, reading books, and getting 3 little men put to bed, we wrapped up our long weekend relaxing on the couch and watching one of our shows. =)

Our official kick off to Summer 2015 was one of the best!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Friday Favorites: Last Week of School Edition

TGIF!! This week has been a wild one. It's been the week of parties and programs. Like every day. =) I'm worn out on this Friday morning but what a fun week we've had! We're so thankful we made it to Friday, the long weekend, and summer break!! 

Here are my favorite happenings from our last week of school...

*Sunday night our big boys had their choir program at church. All the choirs from 3 year olds through 6 grade perform several songs and are given medals for their attendance. It was such a sweet program! I did not stop smiling the whole time my big boys' choir sang. It was so precious!! And funny! The whole choir did great and weren't intimidated at all by the sanctuary full of people. There is something so special about seeing and hearing your babies sing praises to God and tell about His love and goodness. I loved every second of it. 

*This week I was a slacker when it came to school time for Austin. I just didn't have the time (or energy!) to prepare anything for us to do each day. And some days we were just too busy anyway. (I'm hoping to finish out our Ocean/Beach theme with both my big boys.) Instead, my one-on-one quality time with my middle came in the form of playing games together every day. He picked 2 or 3 games for us to play every single morning, and I'd say our games definitely came with some educational value. =)

*The whole family enjoyed Austin's wee-ball banquet this week! It was such a fun season for him and I think we all loved his first experience with organized baseball. He's been playing with daddy and Garrison since he was old enough to swing a bat, but this team experience was such a good one for him. And lots of fun for us to watch!

*Garrison played in his next to last "regular season" game this week. He has also had a really fun season and he's enjoyed playing on daddy's team so much. This is his 3rd year playing and his 1st on a winning team. =) So that's been a huge bonus! I've loved watching both him and Terrell this season. One more game to go!

*More game time with Austin! Just counting his cards after a big win. =)

*Garrison Cade enjoyed his very last day of Kindergarten! This year came with lots of change for our biggest and we are so proud of his hard work and his great Kindergarten year! Yesterday was such a bittersweet day. Here's a recap of him on his first day of school. He's grown so much! It really is true that you should study your kids' faces every single day because they change and grow up so fast!

*All my littles waiting for Granna to arrive yesterday. My mom came over to keep Layton and Baby A so Austin and I could go to Garrison's little awards program at school. I'm so thankful she could do it and that I was able to be there for Garrison's special program.

 *Ready to sing and perform and graduate from Kindergarten!

*Garrison with his teacher! He is really going to miss Mrs. Wilson but he's also excited about being able to visit her next year at Open House and to see her around school. =) It definitely made the goodbyes yesterday easier.

*Garrison with 2 of his besties this year!

*Sweet brothers walking out of the school together on Garrison's last day of Kindergarten. Melt my heart. We are so looking forward to having Garrison home with us all summer long!

*We enjoyed the pretty, slightly cooler weather yesterday afternoon. This little man loves riding in Austin's old car. =)

*And last night Austin played in his last wee-ball game of the season. He was the cutest. He took his role pretty serious while also having lots of fun. He kept us laughing the whole game! Watching him play this season has been such a treat.

Today is our first day of summer! Even though Baby A will be here a few more days, we've already kicked things off by sleeping just a little later this morning and lots of fun playtime for all the boys. We have a pretty fun, exciting, long weekend coming up that we are very much looking forward to. Happy Friday, Happy Summer!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


Currently things are wild and crazy here. Ha. Terrell and I can't think of a busier time since having kids. Even though we've experienced end of year busyness before, this particular school year wrap up takes the cake. We have been busy, busy, busy. Lots of practices, parties, games, programs, and craziness. =) And at first it was stressing me out and making me so overwhelmed. But finally I just accepted it as reality and decided I may as well enjoy it first and foremost, and secondly, just make the best of it. Because even though it's a lot, it's fun, special, and sweet memories for our family. So here's a little update and peek at our day to day, smack dab in the middle of the craziness, currently...

*Eating... Gracious. This has been a challenge. Not eating haha, but eating good. We've had somewhere to be every single night (which being fed at the place we have to be is a definite bonus) so we've had to eat super simple, fast meals. Tonight, even though the big boys have their choir party, we're attempting a good, healthy, normal meal. Praise the Lord. Grilled chicken, green beans, and corn on the cob. Sounds delish. Lately we've also had lots of pizza, take-out, sandwiches, and leftovers (when available). Hopefully our eating habits will improve soon!

*Planning... Terrell and I are in the process of planning our 10th anniversary weekend. Even though it's a big one and it seems as though everybody else celebrating their 10th anniversary is doing something really big and special, the timing of things just doesn't allow for a huge celebration for us this year. We're hoping to close on a new house and move sometime this summer. We're being extra careful about our spending because of wanting some new things for the house. We have a 15 month old who we aren't comfortable leaving for very long. Lots of factors played a role in our decision to keep it simple this anniversary. However, we're still planning a weekend just for us. We're going to do lots of house shopping, have a special date, and just enjoy our extra time together.

*Loving... Experiencing this crazy season through the eyes of my boys, planning for a new house (hopefully!), summer being so close, our beach vacay being so close, ice cream, rare nights at home, watching the Hawks (tonight is game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals!), watching my boys play baseball, naptime, and sharing life with my man... who also happens to be an amazing daddy. =)

*Not Loving... Too hot weather in May, feeling tired during the day, stressing over house stuff, and boys getting into trouble.

*Watching... Lately we've been all about the Hawks, plus the other NBA teams in the play-offs when the Hawks aren't on. We've also been watching an occasional Braves game, Survivor, and catching up just a little on Hawaii Five-O and Blue Bloods.

*Reading... I just started my 4th book by Liane Moriarty, Big Little Lies. I really like her books. They're definitely beach reads. Which are my favorite kind! This morning I also made a list of books I'd like to read this summer since I'm *hoping* I'll have more time for reading. Although this summer looks like it may be a wild one with our possible move... so the jury's still out on my summer reading list.

*Trying... I've mentioned this before but I'm really hoping for a laid back summer for the boys. Even though we might have a really crazy summer with packing, moving, and unpacking, I'm going to try really hard not to plan so, so much for them. I want to simplify this summer. I don't want to feel like I'm working all summer to keep them busy. I want to give them more free time while mixing in some outings and occasional structure at home. It could totally backfire but I want to try it out. Summer starts for us tomorrow afternoon unless my big boy changes his mind and decides to go on Friday for the half day. Either way our trial run is coming soon!

*Hoping... We can close on a new house next month before leaving for vacation. And get the rental house packed up. And move. And get unpacked in the new house. And get settled in the new house. All before school starts back. This could really overwhelm me and get me worried and stressed, but it's all in God's hands. His timing is best and we know that. In the meantime we're doing our part and praying everything else falls into place quick-like.

*Wanting... The things mentioned above. =) Also, a nice long weekend complete with extra rest. I am so tired of being tired! I think our crazy busy schedule, going to bed a little too late every night for several nights in a row, plus some not so great eating habits have all played a part in my tiredness. Sigh.

*Needing... Extra rest and sleep, a smooth start to our summer, home cooked meals, and the 5 of us home together lots more. =)

Friday, May 15, 2015

Friday Favorites: 2 for 1 Edition

Since I wasn't able to do my favorites last Friday but still had lots of pictures and happenings to share, I'm throwing in last week's with this week's. It's kind of long but little moments I want to remember. Hence the 2 for 1 deal. =)

Before I get to my favorites I have to say the month of May is about to do me in. There is soooooo much happening and this mama is EXHAUSTED. We have something going on every single night of the week, including weekends, with no end in sight. I am so worn out!! May really is the new December. Maybe even busier. But without all the Christmas fun. Ha. Hopefully we'll catch our breath soon despite the whole no end in sight issue. In the meantime, these favorites are what's keeping me going. I think I can, I think I can....

*The Saturday before last, that makes it almost 2 weeks ago, we went out to eat at one of our new fave restaurants with my parents. So fun, so delicious! These 3 were super impressed as well. Balloons tied to a snack are part of their love language. =)

*The next morning while the rest of the fam was getting ready for church, this little man helped himself to Frosted Flakes. Gracious. (Don't judge the shenanigans in the bottom of my pantry. We have limited options here something serious.)

*Having fun at practice and ready to play baseball just like his big brothers!

*Mother's Day week is super special around here. Love these sweet words from my firstborn and the picture of me cooking. =)

*Last Tuesday was our only night at home with no where to be in days and days. So we made the most of it! Time outside and daddy grilling. So needed and so wonderful.

*Last week Austin made this jellyfish during school time. He painted the paper plate and cut the tissue paper himself with just a little assistance. It was a fun craft.

*More Mother's Day sweetness from Garrison Cade.

*Last week Austin and I also learned about the way lots of ocean animals use camouflage for protection. Then we made something to demonstrate how camouflage works. Can you find our fish? =)

*On the way to close on the sell of our house!!!!!! (Bailey went too. Haha. She had her last appointment with our vet there.)

*Austin's Mother's Day gift he made for me in Sunday School. Love, love, love. =)

*The equivalent to dolls at our house. Ha! Superheros all tucked in and ready for bed.

*This week Austin painted and "glittered" a sparkly starfish during school time. =)

*This week Austin, Layton, and I enjoyed the end of year Story Time party at the library. My middle had a ball and I was thankful he got to enjoy his very own end of year party.

*Morning walks with my babies have resumed! The pollen finally calmed down. Of course it's a little too hot for my liking but all of us enjoy getting out so it's worth it. =)

*My Kindergartner came home from school Wednesday and told me he wanted to give AnAn something for all the star bursts and skittles she's given him this year. Then he came up with this sweet little note for her all by himself. He put it in her mailbox for her and told her to check her mail. =) He was so excited to hear she loved it. It brought the biggest smile to his face. He's such a sweet and thoughtful little man.

*Pattern block ocean animals! Lots of fine motor practice, good shape review, and even an introduction to some newbies. I'm running on fumes but we're making it through our last theme of the year slowly but surely. Summer is almost here!!

Favorite read this week: Praying for My Marriage. Such a great reminder. Especially given the craziness of this month and the fact that Terrell and both are stretched thin right now. I enjoyed it. =)

This weekend is a full one but it's still the weekend! Still extra time with my favorite guys and a little extra rest and sleep too I hope! Happy Friday!!