Slowing Down on Weekends

I'm a person that loves to be busy. I always have an activity planned for the day or a project on the list, but I've been trying to change that.  I'm working on slowing down life by making sure our days aren't full of activities, not scheduling our evenings out, and really just listening to the kids and current family mood when we're deciding what to do. This has made our time together a lot more relaxing and open to finding those sweet moments like picnics next to the garden or impromptu ice cream dates.

My favorite part of the long weekend was the amount of one-on-one time I got with my kids. Cora slept in Saturday, so Ida and I got to go on a walk and pick up some donuts to surprise Ben and Cora. We spent the rest of the day working in the garden with the girls and hanging out.

Sunday, Cora and I got to go on an ice cream date.  We had fun chatting and she loved meeting every other person that was getting ice cream. I'm always surprised by her outgoing-ness and how easily she makes friends and comes up with things to chat about.  I love how many people I've met because of her friendliness.
Cora went over for a sleepover at my parent's, so I got a lot of time hanging out with Ida.  She loves to crawl around, giggle, and climb onto my chest to cuddle. She's been doing this wrinkle nose smile lately and it makes me so happy. She hasn't been sleeping well lately, so I enjoyed the extra cuddles.

The weekend may have been full of things and I got a lot done in my garden/yard and around the house, but I loved taking it slow and seeing where the day went.  It was the perfect slow weekend.


Date With Cora

Cora and I don't get much one-on-one time together, so I've been trying to make a point of having more dates with her... or as she calls it cry dates.  My mom picked up Ida after work and Cora and I got ready to go do something.  She said she wanted to get face paint, so we went to the Family Dollar nearby to see what they had.  Right when she got in the store, she started seeing all the things she wanted to buy for other people.  I love her gifting spirit. They didn't have face paint, so instead we picked out some shoes and a cute little hedgehog for the garden. 
We stopped to pick up some milkshakes and headed to the park. Cora insisted on swinging on the baby swing. She loves to pretend to kick me and she laugh hysterically afterwards.  The pictures are a little blurry, but you can still see the joy on her face.  I love our little dates and watching Cora's excitement for life.


Busiest Weekend Ever!

This weekend was jam-packed full of fun, but somehow relaxing at the same time.
Friday, our town had a May Fete celebration and I knew Cora would love it.  Me, my mom, and the girls went Friday afternoon and hung out for a little.  We did rides, games, face painting, ate a late lunch, and had some treats. My dad also joined us for a little bit.  Cora was so funny to watch on the rides.  She has such a serious face whenever she was on a ride, but she kept asking to go on different rides.  We were about ready to go and it started to rain... so it was perfect timing.  I went home and hung out with the girls and Ben for a little bit before he headed to work.

Cora and I waited until the rain died down and then we headed back to May Fete to make sure we got our money's worth for the ride bracelets. We hung out with one of Cora's schoolmates and her family. They rode rides, had some ice cream, and had a blast running around with each other.

Our friends headed home and Cora went and rode the mini ferris wheel and car ride over and over and over. There were a couple other kids that were riding the same ride multiple times so it was cute watching them run around riding the rides.  Ida was loving all of the lights on the rides and she was pretty content just looking around. 

My cousin met up with us and rode the merry-go-round a couple times.  A bunch of her friends joined them and it was the cutest thing watching all these middle schoolers being so nice to a little 4 year old.  Cora had the best time riding with a group of the big kids.

My cousin went off to ride more rides and Cora and I rode a couple more times before we headed home.  We both had the best time at May Fete and I'm already looking forward to next year.

Saturday morning we had Cora's birthday brunch.  We spent the rest of the day hanging out and relaxing.  I dropped Cora off at my parent's house.  Ben and I just spent the rest of the evening chowing down on Chinese, catching up on our shows, and playing with Ida.

Sunday I went to pick up Cora and had lunch at my parents.  Cora, Ida, and I headed to the art fair. We went around to all of the booths and looked at the art people were selling. I had a little talk with Cora before we went to the booths and I let her know that if she likes something she should compliment the artist, but if she doesn't like it she just needs to keep on walking.  She did a great job of giving compliments on the things she loves and even started giving out compliments to everyone that was walking by when she liked their outfits.  They had some great artists and I saw some pieces that I loved, but didn't buy anything.  

Some of my favorite artists/booths/pieces:

I loved these little stuffed animals and pillows from The Happy Groundhog.  They are so cute and the artist was really nice. Cora was loving everything in this booth.  I loved the sloth and the stuffed animals that had pockets on their front so they could switch out accessories like donuts.
These wood inlay pieces from Hudson River Inlay were amazing.  They were so detailed and beautiful.
I don't have any of my own pictures for this artist, but I love the ink paintings from Sheila Sweeney... so stunning!  I seriously had to stand there and look at them for a while.  It was a little above my price range, but I would have loved to purchase it.  Adding her stuff to my wish list to buy someday. I also really like this one and this one.

We enjoyed some of the free kids activities.  Cora made a necklace, painted a shirt, got her face painted, and made little clay creatures. I loved this interactive part of it and it was all free except the shirt which was $5.  Cora's shirt was looking pretty cute, then she painted it with brown over top of everything.  When she handed it to the lady to hang up, she said "I made a potato!"

After the art fair, my dad brought by Cora's new bike. She took it for a spin for about 5 seconds before she fell. She barely scraped her knee, but spent the rest of the day walking around with a cane and acting like her leg was broken.

While Cora was stuck upstairs with a 'broken' leg, Ida and I went outside to plant some seeds in the vegetable garden. She loved watching me work in the yard and 'chatted' with me. I got a bunch of bug bites, but it was a great end to a great weekend.


The Longest Birthday Ever!

Our family always jokes about spreading out our birthdays a week or so with our family parties and other festivities, but this year Cora wins the cookie cake for spreading her birthday out three whole weeks. We had some birthday celebrations the weekend of her birthday, but never got around to her family birthday party due to family members being out of town and me having too much on my plate to plan something.
Well we got our act together and had a little birthday party for her last weekend. I wanted to do something pretty easy since I'm a little busy these days working and momming. Tuesday, I called up and reserved the park near our house then ordered ahead everything we needed from Panera and Kroger Clicklist for a birthday brunch.  My girl loves balloons, pink, and all things party related, so I wanted to get a couple things to jazz the shelter up a little bit. We stopped by Target during the week to pick up some pink and white themed plates, napkins, table cloth, utensils, and balloons.  It ended up being too cold/windy for the balloons, but we still put out the table cloths and had the pretty pink plates and napkins.

We served bagels, fruit salad, hard boiled eggs, and various drinks. We had a homemade cookie cake for dessert. had everything loaded up in a cooler, large bag, and my stroller and it was easy to setup and tear down. It was pretty stress free party, so I definitely think the birthday brunch is here to stay.

We had so much fun with all of the celebrations and spreading them out was easier and less stressful, but I'm glad all of her birthday festivities are finally over. Happy birthday Cora!!!


A Mother's Day Weekend Full of Mother Nature

Friday night, Cora slept over at my parent's house so I got a lot of chores and TV watching done that evening (Ben and I are watching the new Prison Break).  The school was having a relay for life event, so we took advantage of the extra noise and worked on building our garden bed.  Ida loves her only-child nights and was hamming it up the entire night.
Saturday, my parents dropped Cora off around noon.  We quickly got ready for a birthday party and headed out for the day. Cora loves parties and had the best time running around playing with her friends. I enjoyed the nice weather and catching up with the other school moms.

After the party, the girls and I stopped by Home Depot to pick up a couple things.  We took our time walking around looking at all of the flowers.  I picked up some terra cotta pots for us to paint as Mother's day presents to my sister and mom from Cora. We spent the rest of the evening painting our flower pots.

Sunday was a long day. I woke up early and the girls quickly followed. Normally they sleep in until 10ish so I enjoyed a couple extra hours with the girls.  We bathed, had breakfast, walked around the yard, and just hung out for a little bit. Cora and I went on a date to Sam's club then worked on planting the flowers.

We headed over to my parent's house for some Mother's Day celebrations. We had some delicious food and spent the rest of the day relaxing on their deck and hanging out with each other.

I'm so lucky to be a mommy to these two sweet babes.  They have been the biggest blessing to our family and I can't imagine my life without them.

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