Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Finger Painting

Holly loves to do art, what child doesn't! Finger paints though are a fun treat. Holly started out with finger painting, moved on to hand painting and then we progressed to body painting... hmmm, can you tell I walked away from this project too soon? Oh well, she had a ton of fun and the bath took care of the mess! Completely worth it. The art piece turned out really pretty too!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Camping Weekend

This weekend we ventured out to experience our first nights at camping this year. Pretty early, pretty wet and pretty chilly. However we fared well and had a nice, relaxing time. A friend invited us to join them for the weekend at their lake property. We camped on the property, however it was pretty laid back for 'camping' it was like a mini retreat instead.

We spent Saturday exploring a couple of close park areas. We checked out a local state park for future camping, which unfortunately is slated to close due to budget cuts in our state. Very sad! I have sent in my email to our legislature already and we'll drop our postcards later today, hoping to have our voices heard. I wish there were other ways to save funds.

We also explored a forest road near Staircase and Lake Cushman. My first time doing so - it was fun. You could go on forever in that area - I had no idea. We plan to check out a lake or two off of the roads when we camp there later this summer. Right now they are all closed off, to early in the year I guess.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Lately Holly has taken to picking flowers for me, from the daintiest ground cover to the loveliest dandelion. Where ever we are if she spies the smallest of flowers, her sweet little hand has acquired it for Mommy. The look in her eyes when she hands it to me - just stops the world around me as she whispers "I Love You".

She is amazingly happy, full of thought and observing my complete reaction as I accept the flower - with a happy smile, hug and a whisper of 'I Love You' right back.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Our week at a glance...

Blogging for me is like a simple journal or scrapbook for our family, the little side bits and pieces that get lost in my paper scrapbooking simply because the day did not come with matte finished photo to scrap. I like to sit and write a bit about our everyday adventures, tiny family moments and post a few random photos... simply because those are the moments that really make up who we are as a family.

On that note; our week as a family can be relaxing one moment and an abrupt whirl wind the next. For the most part we try to keep things pretty simple as far as 'plans' go... again, *we try*. Bryan works your traditional weekday schedule with really nice hours that make for great family time. Luckily he is not faced with odd hours or overtime. So, all general family activity takes place after dinner on week nights or is squeezed into a weekend.

I am not afraid to pass on an activity to simply keep things balanced. I am not one to constantly go day to day or overly plan our family time. When we have been full of visits, errands, activities and events --I will then pass on others when the opportunity arises. And, I am thankful that I can recognize that in our life. It is okay to say, "no thanks" and move on to future plans. So, we plan a few nights a week with an activity and then take a few off. Weekends are usually pretty fun filled with big plans, game nights, dinners or weekends away.

Weekdays are for the 'Mom & Me' moments. Being that I am stay at home mom I am lucky to fill our week with great opportunities for Holly to play, learn and grow all while watching and participating. We take in our weekly playgroup with dear friends, participate in a weekly preschool co-op and then plan a few field trips with other friends. You might find us at a local kids museum, playing at our neighborhood parks, searching the library, enjoying a kids amusement attraction or simply at a friends home playing. But, you'll most likely find us about town.

Our week at a glance... the many moments I don't scrapbook but want to remember! Thanks for sharing with me!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Fun Weekend

This past weekend, well several days, have been full of good stuff! We have had a full house for the most part with family and friends over for a lot for visiting, laughter, good food, brew and wine! Honestly, that alone was a great time and would make us happy any ol' day! However, we also had a fun weekend of Holly playing, playhouse project progression and me getting out for some fun girly time (always well loved)!
Mainly this weekend brought with it the full removal of the concrete we planned to banish and the beginnings of some basic excavation where the playhouse will be located. As well, we picked up a few various supplies to begin our project of assembly soon. Grandpa Hawk has adopted the round window and whimsical playhouse door for a project. All is on track and moving a long nicely!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mommy & Daughter Time

Yesterday we skipped our normal routine and instead I took Holly with me to the local plant nursery, Watsons. I brought along our sketch of the upcoming playhouse/garden and we went in search of some ideas for our plantings. She spent time walking with me as we searched out various plants and trees we liked. Holly pointed out items she thought were neat and we read many labels to learn about various items. A lot of exploration!

Holly enjoyed doing this for over an hour. No complaints. No fussing. No distractions. She honestly was fully engaged in seeking out ideas for her garden and our yard, she had input, commented on her likes and dislikes and even made some suggestions I hadn't thought of yet. It was wonderful!

After getting a bit cold we decided to head in for lunch. The nursery has a little lunch nook inside, nothing fancy - just your normal sandwiches and salad. We took a seat and Holly began a full conversation with me discussing our day, her new garden and she ordered a salad to enjoy for lunch because she wanted to be a big girl. We had a really nice time, a nice little lunch and most of all a great memory of some quality Mommy & Daughter time! I loved every moment of it!!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Great Daddy

Bryan has been working hard in this icky, wet weather to remove the concrete for Holly's playhouse. It has been a dirty job, a wet job and a hard job so far. However, that has not ruined his enthusiasm or determination - he heads out there each moment he can to make progress. What a great daddy!!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Shamrock Cookies

In preparation for St. Patrick's Day we have been busy reading stories, listening to music, decorating a bit, making art projects and shamrock cookies! Holly had a lot of fun rolling out her dough, using the cookie cutters and adding the green sprinkles with a gentle touch. It made for a really nice evening. They will be perfect for today and our St. Patrick's Day dinner tonight with company over!
Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Let The Fun Begin

We have officially broke ground for our upcoming playhouse and exploration garden project. Bryan has began working on some concrete removal. With that comes dirt and lots of it. Which coupled with the rain showers that have finally started gracing our neck of the woods... well, you get mud! Lots and lots of mud. Oh, and a great mud puddles.

Holly loves a good mud puddle. Who doesn't really? Here she is working with her tools to create a 'river' and 'lakes'. She actually did a pretty darn good job of figuring out how to layer it down the slope to make each lake. Engineering 101!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Little Einsteins

I am not a huge fan of character like clothing or the such on kids... it's just not my favorite thing in the world. I feel like my child is then a walking billboard for Disney or Mattel with no royalties for college. However, I *get* that children are naturally attracted to this stuff, especially when they see it on TV.

Well, I'll admit Holly loves the Little Einsteins and yes it is one of the few shows she is allowed to watch. We own a couple of their DVDs as well. As much as I like to battle the character connection, it happens. I have fallen victim to marketing and those sweet little blue eyes calling out... "pleeease Mama" -- aka, sucker!

This morning was as good example. Holly watched her one morning show - Little Einsteins. Then played with Rocket from the Little Einsteins. Read two books from the Little Einsteins. Listened to some music we have of theirs. Then asked for a bath... to use her Little Einsteins bubble bath and play with her new Rocket & Leo bath toy.

Ugh -- I have succumbed to the character stuff something I thought I'd never really do. I do try to keep some control over it, but it can suck you in - rocket and all!

Thank goodness her one and only Little Einsteins shirt is now too small :)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Big Ideas

Holly's fourth birthday is coming up soon... yes, four! Crazy, as I have no idea where the past four years have gone and this is coming from a family who really tries to take life slow and leisurely.

For her fourth birthday present we are going to create a wonderful little zone in our yard that is just for her - a playhouse with an exploration garden surrounding it. Flowers, shrubs, trees, plants, rocks, logs, birdhouses, bird freeders and a frog bog (okay... that one might be for me too!) It will be her own little corner of the world to just kick back, play house, hang out with little friends, explore the garden and take in the world. And, well -- we too will reap the benefits of a cute garden addition of course.

The plan as of right now is to remove a portion of our enormous concrete pad and build her playhouse area there. This will also serve as a way to soften the hard gray surfaces, reduce the heat that happens with our concrete, offer a nice play zone that is easily seen from the house, garage and side patio where we often bbq and relax. Kind of a win, win for us all!

We are pretty excited to get moving on this soon; as we will also be centering her little birthday party around it - a garden/playhouse theme. Lot's to do, a bunch of work ahead of us, family recruited to help and soon we'll break ground! I'll post some progress photos as we get going - should be fun to watch!

Monday, March 9, 2009

And even more snow!

This winter has been one of the best winters for snow in our area. We get some each year, but man I am impressed with this year - it has been fun, white and powdery! I love it! Holly woke up this morning just before 7am and we immediately headed out to play in the snow. Nothing like a snowball fight to start your morning. How fun! She is now enjoying breakfast of 'snow flakes' (frosted flakes) and hot cocoa with marshmallows. I love these kind of mornings!

Thursday, March 5, 2009


Our goal this year is to get Holly swimming in some manner so that her water safety is a bit better. When she was younger Bryan and Holly did take a few sessions at the YMCA, however those classes are very full (along with many other classes being taught) and we found it was much to distracting for her. A friend turned us on to a local high school pool that offers a few nights of free swim for the community. We have ventured out a few times now and have enjoyed some really fun evenings as a family.

Since we spend so much time around water, with kayaking and camping, we feel it is very important for her to get swimming down sooner than later. So, we'll be spending many nights at the pool and hopefully making a little progress with her. If we find it is just too hard, we'll seek out a personal swim trainer for her later this Spring -- in the mean time we are having a really nice time swimming together. And, it is a real energy burner for us all... something we could all use!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Ballerina Bear

Grandma Annette has been out of town for over a month, so when she came over this past weekend to visit Holly was very happy! Grandma & Grandpa brought along a couple of Valentine treats for Holly as well. One was a bear you have to stuff, create and dress - a ballerina bear. I have taken Holly to Build A Bear a couple of times and she really enjoys it - so, this was her thing.
Here are some photos of her stuffing the bear, dressing it and having fun all the while. This little bear is now resting on her bed after a fun Sunday of dancing around the house. Good times!

Stuffing the bear!

A beard like Santa!

Dressing the ballerina bear!