Sunday, March 24, 2013

Please WAKE ME UP!

It feels like Groundhog Day. Here we are, March 24th & we have yet another 8 inches of snow on the ground. Maybe I am mistaken but I kind of thought that Mr. Groundhog didn't see his shadow on February 2nd which meant that Springlike weather would be coming sooner rather than later. Well that just hasn't happened & I am so FREAKING tired of THIS snow!

The swing set is covered in snow & the boys just stand at the window & stare. Asking when they get to go out & play again. I respond the only way I can at this point, one day. I just hope that when I say "one day" it isn't the same thing as the Groundhog saying "Spring is coming".

So here's to hoping that this is the last of the snow we see until late in 2013 & that sunshine and warming temperatures are just days away--which could totally happen because two Fridays ago it was 75 and the next day it was 32. Surely we can flip it around & reverse it because we not only have a family photo shoot coming up but I am dying to get back outside for my own photo shoots. (did you catch that awesome ode to ms missy)

Once mr. sun decides to come out to play, here's where we will be spending our evenings…please hurry cause I am just not sure how much more I can take. These little boys need to get out and explore & burn off some MAJOR stored up energy.

look mom--i ate grass from sliding head first down the slide.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Raising Brothers

Choosing the word "Raising" may be a little bit of a stretch considering they are only 3 1/2 and 22 months old but nevertheless, it still doesn't change the fact that the moment you step foot into our house you instantly know we have BOYS.

Today we had our 11 month inspection---the fact that we have been here for almost an entire year is mind blowing---as we walked around the house and the builder checked the windows & doors for proper fitting, I found myself staring down the walls. Looking at the chips in the paint from toys being flung into the wall--it was an accident Mom. The dirty handprints which lead you all the way up the staircase. & don't forget the spilled drinks caked on those very same 11 month old painted walls. Every single one needing to be repainted.

After getting over the fact that the walls needed to be painted--of which we are in the process of picking out new colors!!--I started to realize just how much our HOME has been "lived in" in just 11 short months. Sure there isn't a single room which is completely finished BUT we have made our marks & have made this house, our home. We wasted no time wearing in the carpets from playing soccer in the house, or letting the kids chase one another in their capes, or by riding their bikes and cars around the living room and kitchen. This house home gave us everything that we asked for-an open concept so that we could spend more time together as a family. A home that was LIVED in and where there isn't a single room that is off limit or isn't being used--where furniture can be easily replaced if the boys LIVE too much.

And if the handprints on the walls weren't enough to let you know that we are busy raising two boys then all you would have to do is take a look at the playroom. It is certain to be a dead giveaway. From the countless number of trucks to the train track, the Hot Wheels to Transformers & Superheroes--they all spell out BOY. The latest addition to our toy line up---Legos.

I remember growing up and my brother getting lots of Legos. We would spend hours putting them together, taking them apart and then putting them back together. And then over the last year or so my little nephew started getting into Legos, its all he wanted for Christmas 2011 & you better believe that is exactly what this aunt gave him. Kaden isn't a stranger to Legos, we actually bought him his first Lego on our Minneapolis trip but it wasn't anything special, he still played with it-just not like the boys play with these…

For Valentine's Day we gave the boys a couple Lego kits. They came with a story book and you build the toy as you read along. Kaden got one with a car and an airplane while Logan got one with farm animals. My boys don't sit still very long but we are pretty much guaranteed at least 30 minutes of quiet playing when they bring out their bags of Legos. I know it is only a matter of time before they choose a new favorite toy but I really hope they never truly out grow Legos.

You know, I may never see Barbies, Princesses, My Little Ponies or anything PINK for that matter in our toy room but thats okay. I have come to terms with it. If we have another baby, I know the likelihood of it being a BOY is pretty well, likely & I am totally okay with that. I can totally see my boys running towards the house covered from head to toe in dirt carrying a pail full of snakes and grasshoppers. I can be that Mom. The Mom that says, what can we put them in & Googles what each need to eat to stay alive. I can & with these two, I know I will.

Oh and not only is playing with Legos fun for Logie, he gets pretty thirsty doing it too…

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Never Before Seen Photos

A few years ago we came clean with all our friends and family, more importantly my mom and dad about our wedding. You see, we had planned this really nice BEACH wedding for April 22nd, 2008 but after looking into what it would take to get a marriage license there, we decided to pull a fast one & we got married on St. Patrick's Day. At the Olathe Court house. In front of a judge. & a palm tree. It may not sound like much but as you will see from the never before seen photos below, it was very emotional. And so for our 5 year anniversary-Part 1-I figured that I would show the REAL ceremony and then for Part 2 on the 22nd of April, I'll give you the mushy post-the one where I tell you how this man has made me a better person & how I couldn't live without him, blah, blah, blah…

But seriously, one of the BEST days of my life. They say its good luck if it rains on your wedding day, well it poured that day & so far, life as Mrs. Justin South has been pretty GREAT.

I {HEART} this man.

And that evening we celebrated with a few friends and a few co-workers of Justin's who knew it was going down.

oh jake. what can i say...

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Be The Good

The moment I saw this pallet sign on Pinterest I knew that I wanted it in our house. I absolutely LOVE the saying, especially the hidden message. Too often we make judgement or think about how someone else should take care of the problem or someone else should make a change when in fact, it all starts with YOU! I'll be the first to admit that am totally guilty of this & thus, I thought it would be great to have a daily reminder on our walls telling us that we need to BE THE GOOD. We need to try & find the positive in each situation and we really need to not put as much negativity out there in the world. Its easier said then done, I know that. But I think putting a little more thought into our words or actions would go a long way-you just never know who you may hurt…

I know-rainbows and butterflies but seriously-a reminder won't hurt anything or anyone!

I tasked Justin with finding me pallets that I could rip apart--we got them in January but it wasn't until this weekend that I actually tackled the project. I needed some help. We were both having the most difficult time ripping the boards off the pallet, with each tug we would split the piece in two. Lucky for me I was introduced to a family that had access to pallets and a machine that took care of the hard part and sawing off the back of the nails which was PERFECT because I thought the nail heads would give it a little more of a rustic look. 

The second part of the task was figuring out how to make the stencil. When you click on the link above, it not only gives you the step by step instructions on how to create the pallet sign but also how to create the stencil which was great if you had the handy dandy machine that would do the work for you which I did not! So I reached back out to Sarah at LaLa Creates, who is AWESOME to work with and she whipped it up in no time for me & it was finally time to tackle the project…

And I just love how it turned out. It isn't perfect but what in LIFE is (except my two boys!). Now the question is, where do we hang it?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Home vs. HOME

There is home-which is where we park our cars (unless at the airport), where we get our mail, where the walls have too many handprints to count, toys are strung all over & where I kiss my kiddos goodnight & tuck them safely into bed--that is unless you're Kaden the master staller. Its where we are creating memories day in and day out as our own little family of four.

Then there is HOME. Where all the day to day nuances & worries seem to disappear, where the only thing we HAVE to do is run in & see Papa Richard--which is NEVER a chore, where the kids stay up way past their bedtime & it doesn't matter to be a bit because they are in the BEST moods ever, where they are loved on by Papa Tom & Grandma Sara, where I get to sit back with my feet up and be taken care of too.

One home isn't better than the other, they are both dear to my heart but for different reason.

When heading HOME, this calming affect comes over me.

The boys get to spend time with family they don't get to see often enough-an uncle, who they often imitate by taking me to jail. Without food. Without water. No ice cream. For sever days…

a baby cousin that is growing up WAY too quickly. Does she realize that she could be the last girl in this family---we need her to stop growing! It won't be long before she doesn't want to give those hugs and kisses and she won't want anyone to rock her and snuggle with her--they think they can do it all themselve & I am just not ready for her to be a BIG girl yet. I already have two VERY big boys.

Home is where a sister & a niece & nephew--who are already taller than their aunt--drive up just to sit around the kitchen table and talk. For hours.

& this weekend, we even got to see Aunt Cinda & Uncle Harry who were in town from Delaware. We traveled out to their farm, a place I visited when I was little and got a peek at the new pond that they built. They say the pond is stocked and by summer, it will be ready for some fishing. Grandma Sara has already marked the spot where the boys will sit & fish. I told her I wouldn't count on too much sitting, epecially sitting and being quiet and they may do way more rock throwing than fishing but fun will be had and memories will be made.

Not only did we get to see family but we got to visit Red Oak II and while I did a photo shoot, the boys they got to run around and explore with Grandma Sara. & for part of that, I got to join. They swung on the swings. They picked up and threw rocks--but only once. They chased ducks. They looked for frogs. & then Grandma Sara got them ice cream. & new toys from the local thrift store-a Buzz for Kaden and a lion flashlight for Logie. Kaden sure loves his Buzz, he hasn't went a night without him since…

Going home doesn't happen as often as I would like but when we are there, we try and fit in as much family time as possible. I don't say "no" as often as I probably should but when it comes to my parents and them spoiling the kids, they get a pass. So what if the kids may need an extra brushing of the teeth or a little bit longer nap--they were too busy eating and making memories.

HOME isn't better than home, its just different & a place that I am so happy that the boys will grow up knowing. They'll get to see where I grew up, the farm that I lived on, the gym that I played played basketball in. They'll know where I came from which makes up so much of who I am today. I love going HOME and leaving is hard to do but there's nothing like pulling into our drive way & walking into OUR home.

and now for the photo dump...

Saturday, March 9, 2013

three & a half

I never really noticed it until a co-worker of mine mentioned that she had become MOM basically over night. Mommy was no longer in her little girl's vocabulary. I thought to myself, I may cry when that day comes. Little did I know, it had happened, I just didn't realize it. Every morning since she told me that story it has been…

"MOM, I'm awake."

"Mom, you're home."

"Mom, can have some milk."

My first baby is growing up way too fast & I was damn sure to celebrate whatever I could--enter his half birthday. My husband (and my father) couldn't believe we were celebrating half birthdays but I am not sure why, we haven't missed one half birthday yet!

I didn't want to do anything big, just a little cake with some candles. So we bought a box of yellow cake mix and pulled up Pinterest to see what we could do with it. We decided to go with Cake Pancake, basically you take the cake mix and you mix it like you normally would and then just fry it up like pancakes. Justin did the frying while I did the icing and lets just say one of us failed miserably!!

but it didn't matter how it looked, they loved it! And actually it was pretty good, sweeter than the normal yellow cake we are used to but still good.

And since we haven't had a photo shoot with Kaden for awhile, I took him out today for a quick one. I made the mistake of taking Logan and Grandma Sara along for the ride because Kaden just wanted to run wild and explore every little building that Red Oak II has on its property. I tried to keep up with my camera and I even tried to bribe a little & honestly, I got what I needed. Where they as perfect as they could have been. No but they were Kaden being Kaden--and he was smiling ear to ear.

I am one lucky MOM, not Mommy, MOM. This kid can light up any room. He has hit an age where he just says the funniest things & frankly Justin and I will look at each other and wonder where he comes up with these things. I am doing my best when it comes capturing these sayings so that when he is older and takes a look back through his baby books, he will get a good chuckle too, or maybe one day his own kids will.

Now don't get me wrong, we still have our meltdowns, what three year old doesn't, but we spend much more of our time smiling and telling stories rather than crying and throwing fits. More time snuggling and reading books rather than wrestling him into bed, the car or to eat. & most importantly more time saying "I LOVE YOU."

I love you too buddy-to the moon & back.