Grow Old With Me, The Best Is Yet To Be...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day, Kasey!

~ You click on the play button twice to view. The first one takes you to the smilebox website, the second one takes you to his slideshow. ~
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

Saturday, June 16, 2012

"I didn't choosed..."

We were BBQ-ing with our friends a while back. I handed Isla her plate and she replied not with a 'thank you' but with, "Hey! I didn't choosed a hamburger. I choosed a roast beeth!" Hahaha!
Silly little girl! Let me whip that right on up for you! ;-)

8 Years

Married for 8 years, together for 9!
And it just keeps getting better.

Adiee is Reading!

It's no secret that I'm not impressed with the curriculum at RES. I do not agree with the guided reading approach - at. all. Adiee excelled in math, but has somewhat struggled with reading (not with the short stories that she would bring home from school, but with everyday books from home or the library) and it was extremely frustrating to her. Anyway, {in addition to our normal reading times} Mikenna and Adiee have been reading together for quiet time everyday since school got out and as soon as Kasey came home from work last Monday (6/11) she brought "The Berenstain's B Book" out wanting to read to him. As soon as she started, you could tell it was a book that she has heard many times and she was planning on reciting it from memory... Well until she realized that it was harder than she thought to remember 26 pages verbatim so Kasey had her sound out and actually READ the entire book. The fact that she could was very encouraging to her and she has been a lot more motivated to try other books as well. This is just the tip of the iceberg, she will be reading chapter books before we know it! ;-)

Monday, June 11, 2012

SLC 2012

Kasey will be on-call at work beginning June 14th {our anniversary} through the middle of July... Obviously, we are not too thrilled about this. This means that we won't be able to go anywhere for our anniversary, Mikenna's birthday, 4th of July {my brother will be home (2 hours away) from DC}, and to top it all off - Kasey's 10-year high school reunion in Oregon. Bummer.

On the upside, we were able to get out of town for a few days before our month-long lockdown. We ran the idea by our wonderful friends, the Santiago's {our families have become very close, we both have 3 girls close to the same ages and they live right next to us!} to see if they might want to join us for a few days of fun at Lagoon and the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City. Since they did decide to come and a full itinerary, we were unable to visit the many family members we have there... Sorry guys, next time!

We left after the husbands got off work on Thursday evening and arrived at the hotel around 11:30 pm. We got conjoining rooms so we could all hang out before and after our planned activities. Brittney and I weren't tired for some reason so we decided to go try to find a store to buy healthy lunches for Lagoon. Neither one of us wanted to feed our families greasy fair food as a meal. That was quite the adventure - Super Target was closed, we found another market that was closed, the tomtom led us to an alley and said that we had reached walmart {um, no!}, so we had to follow a map on my iPhone which was fun... We had managed to make a huge circle around it, only to find out it was just a quick trip on the interstate at the next exit! We had fun though laughing for the 2 hours it took! Then we had to quietly put everything away in the fridge without waking up our kids and husbands - not easy when you can't stop giggling at every crinkle and crunch as well as eachother. Friday morning, we went down to the continental breakfast only to find out they shut it down at 9... It was 9:15! So we had breakfast together at IHOP, then headed to Lagoon.

Just a few highlights...

This was Adiee getting prepped for the skycoaster. You know, when you pay an extra $30 for them to scare the pants off of you... I was worried about Adiee on this one. She occasionally has a fear of heights, but wanted to do this with her dad.
 She was SO excited! What a wierdo, this ride is absolutely terrifying if you ask me.
 NO fear!
Look at those baby blues! She is such a gorgeous little girl!
 No turning back!
"This must be what a bird sees." Adiee said this to Kasey as they are climbing to the top...
How sweet and innocent is that?!
They LOVED every second of it. Brave girl!
I was very nervous about what her reaction was going to be.

The girls in their coordinating ladybug/polka dot outfits.
So cute!
Isla enjoying her dip n dots :)
Mikenna and I are about to go on the Catapult, another X-treme ride. I really like this one!
She's so excited! Last year she did the swing and Adiee did this one with me.
Loved it!
Sweet Isla riding the helicopters!

Saturday we planned to go to the zoo. We had breakfast and finished getting ready. This day was a little more hectic, then we found out the zoo was about an HOUR away... We took the scenic route and drove through downtown SLC. Of all the times I've been there, I don't think I have ever been downtown. By the time we got there it was already around noon. Zoo parking was ridiculous, so Kasey and I opted to just pay for parking so we didn't have to keep trolling the lot for someone to leave. The weather wasn't as nice this day, an occasional chilly gust of wind really put a damper on the day from the get-go.
Our 3 beautiful babies!
Our 3 little "chick-a-dees" :)
Checking out the seals...
Mikenna played photographer with my phone :) Made me nervous a few times, could you imagine her dropping it in the water or in an animals cage?! That thing was expensive!
This picture was taken right after what was probably the worst moment of my life - Adiee got separated from our group. Kasey, Schnihder, and I all went running in different directons while Brittney stayed with the kids. I was running around looking for her and I physically couldn't scream her name, except once. I couldn't believe that it was happening, it didn't seem real at all. I don't think a minute had passed when I saw Adiee walking towards and talking with a zoo worker, she was calm but started crying when she saw Schnihder and I running towards her in opposite directions. I squeezed her and just started sobbing. I felt like such a horrible mom, and I held her hand while we walked back to where our group was. Kasey had to talk me through a full-blown panic attack - something I have never experienced before. I physically couldn't breathe, it felt like someone was squeezing my throat and I was breathing through an opening no bigger than a pinhead. I remember feeling like I was going to faint because I was crying so hard and fighting to breathe, being just so thankful that she was safe with us, and feeling like I was a terrible mom. Kasey made me feel better by saying that I wasn't a bad mom, this is something that happens sometimes {although, it's not supposed to happen to me...}, that Adiee knowing to calmly look for a person in uniform and to ask for help was just confirmation that she has good parents. But it's 2 days later and I'm still feeling very emotional about the whole ordeal.
It didn't take long for Adiee to recover, can you see the excitement over the giraffe? :)
I love this picture, and holy cow does Mikenna look grown up or what?!
Sweet girls!
We had lunch, shopped in the gift shop {Mikenna got an elephant mood necklace, and some slime with a tiger in it. Adiee picked a frog whose eyes pop out when you squeeze it and a glass frog sculpture. Isla picked a beautiful pink crystal sea horse necklace and a pen with charms on it.} and we called it a day by 3 pm. So we basically paid $60 for 3 hours of freezing our tushes off, and a scary experience I won't ever forget. After we left, we went shopping, to dinner, then went swimming at the hotel.
Look at that face!
 Having a great time!
Easy does it :) What a sweetie pie!
Sunday we took off around noon, Kasey had to get back to town so he could take on-call while Mike left on a business trip... Even when we aren't on-call, our weekends aren't always our own. We're still trying to get used to that. If you're visiting just this post, I posted 2 others earlier {one this morning, and one last night. Just FYI if you wanted to read those as well ;-)} Thanks for reading!

Yard Sale!

Over the past month or so, I have been on a mission to eliminate ALL clutter in our home. I have gone through every box, every cabinet, every bin, basket, and drawer in this house. After an exhausting 3-day yard sale on the weekend of June 1st and we raked in over $1300. Kasey and I haven't had a garage sale in about 7 years, we have had full intention on doing one sooner but I have a tendency to over-think and over-analyze EVERYTHING so I made actually doing it quite overwhelming. This year I was fed up and decided I was going to just do it already. So I spent about 3 weeks going through all of our possessions, 1 week pricing everything, and threw it out on the lawn... I got rid of all our baby items, I bawled my eyes out all weekend because it's hard to accept that the baby stage is already all over for us. I cried when I was putting out all of our baby clothes and especially their Christmas dresses. I sobbed when I sold our swing, jumperoo, bath tub, bouncer, and car seat to a pregnant smoker. Breaks my heart. I sold everything at any price because my bottom line was ultimately to have it gone - item brand new $125, marked at $20, they had $3... SOLD! No joke. What didn't sell by Sunday afternoon, we donated to a lady that owns a thrift store in Hanna, WY. She's known to give more than she sells, so it felt great to help. We donated over 200 cute, clean baby girl outfits {some still with tags}, over 20 pairs of shoes in good/great condition, 10 large baby/toddler toys that we have outgrown, 2 boxes of other toys, 2 large boxes of stuffed animals, household items, and all kinds of other miscellaneous. She hauled away 2 truck loads of our no longer needed goodies.
In the process of sifting through all of our things, I found this. Made my day :) Kasey wrote it on a box when we were moving into our first home together. The box was in horrible condition so I had to recycle it and since I am NOT a hoarder (haha!) I took a picture of it and moved on :-)

I spent the next few days after our successful yard sale cleaning and organizing the house and it was immaculate when we left for a short vacation last Thursday. Best of all, we taught the girls some valuable lessons - letting go of once treasured possessions when we outgrow them {just because you were given that when you were 2 doesn't mean we need to keep it forever... a.k.a. hoarding}, giving to the less fortunate {we are so very lucky to have daddy. He provides us with not only the things we need but also with the things we want. Not everyone has that.}, taking care of the things that they still want by keeping them clean and organized {I don't know how many times we all have stepped on and broke things that they didn't put away so they ended up in the garbage}, and it's not all about quantity - I got rid of all the "filler" toys {stuff that doesn't get played with very often if at all} and I have made it EASY for my girls to keep their rooms and their playroom tidy. I think it is working because it has been a week and they have yet to absolutely wreck their play spaces and clean-up time takes only minutes instead of hours! I'm absolutely loving it, and so are they - no more days where cleaning up their toys seem endless.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

End of May

End of the 2011-2012 school year has come and gone, and with it came many events in the Brown household. The girls' field day was on May 30th. It was VERY windy and a bit chillier than what the forecast said but it didn't deter them from doing their best, and Kasey was able to take off from work early so he could cheer our girls on!
 Game Face! Ha ;)
 She won that round! Woohoo!
 Adiee and her partner took first in the three-legged race as well! So proud!
 Just bouncing between wins!
Working hard for her team during the relay race! Go Adiee!!
I packed up our picnic basket and we had lunch in Adiee's classroom before it was time to head to Mikenna's field day festivities.
 She is a QUICK little thing!!

Just bouncing around...
May 31st was Mikenna and Adiee's last day of school. I'm having a bit of a hard time accepting the fact that Adiee is done with kindergarten. It doesn't seem possible. She has changed and grown so much over the past year. And the fact that Mikenna is going into 3rd grade? Yikes!
Our girls on their last day of school.
I don't think I mentioned this before, but my mom bought Adiee a frog cage for her birthday. I wasn't too thrilled about another living thing that I was going to have to feed and clean, but of course Adiee opened it up and I HAD to order the stinkin' tadpole. He arrived in the mail the last week in April with a note saying his birthday was March 23, 2012. Well I thought he was a goner after the first day because he seemed to shrivel up and even went belly up a few times. I figured I waited too long to feed it even though I followed the directions perfectly. Oh, the guilt! But he proved to be a survivor.
He went from a tadpole to a full-fledged frog over a month's time. I have to admit it was pretty interesting to watch. Adiee named him "Tad", we fed him his "froggy flakes" everyday, and I cleaned that darn cage every single Saturday complete with dechlorination drops and bottled drinking water.
We noticed that he had grown skeleton-like legs the weekend of May 19th, they had filled out and he had sprouted arms by the weekend of May 26th and all of a sudden he was a complete froggy by May 29th. Well, Adiee had arranged to bring Tad into her class to show and tell him on the last day of school but sadly he died the afternoon before. I have no clue as to why, but it was heartbreaking. Adiee got her doctor kit out and wanted to "fix" him but when I explained that it wouldn't work, she took out the latex gloves and picked him up so we could bury him. All of the girls were absolutely devastated. It ripped my heart out to see Adiee's reaction when Kasey and I had to tell her Tad went to heaven. Kasey built a fire in the firepit and we invited the girls' best friends over for smores to help ease their minds. I made a quick memorial page to print out for Adiee to take to school since we couldn't bring Tad in. I went with her to make sure that she wasn't too sad after talking about it, but before she got to say anything I heard a couple of her classmates whispering - I was shocked to hear that they thought they heard that Adiee's DAD died, not TAD... Whoa!! Needless to say we had to put an end to that ASAP!

May 31st was also the girls' last soccer game. Both Mikenna and Adiee got soccer medals for their team efforts after their last game and were super excited!
Adiee starting the game!
She's guarding her goal. Thatta Girl! :)
So that was our May in a nutshell.