6.29.2016

What's Up Wednesday

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Today, I’m linking up with ShayShaefer and Mel for What’s Up Wednesday!
What we're eating this week: 
We added this Hawaiian grilled chicken with coconut rice to our regular meal rotation and LOVE IT! We also added these Everything We Love Cookies as recommended by hungryrunnergirl to our regular cookie rotation as well ;) (It has coconut, chocolate chips, oatmeal, and cornflakes in them which sounds a little strange but they are amazing!)
What I'm reminiscing about:
Two things:
One, Disney World! We got back from the happiest place on earth last month and had such a magical time! I can't believe it's over, and I'm already planning our next Disney trip (that sadly won't be for a very long time! Whaaaaaahh!!!) I blogged about our Disney trip -----> here.
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Two, moving to Iowa! We hit our two-year Iowa anniversary at the beginning of this month. Since we've been married, we have officially lived in Davenport, Iowa longer than we lived in Utah or Alabama. I had very low expectations moving here and I am happy to report that Iowa has been very good to us :) Here is a picture of David that I posted our first week in Iowa in June 2014:

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And look how big he is now! (wearing Jack's church shoes out to run errands! haha):
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He's the age that Jack was when we moved to Iowa. I can't believe that!
What I'm loving:
  • Gel nails! Back in December, I bought a LED lamp on major clearance and I have loved having painted fingernails for the last few months (I can't stand painting my nails with regular polish because it chips within a day!) I just got this new Heirloom Lilac color and I love it :)
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  • Snapchat! It took me about 6 months to figure out how it works (which made me feel really old! ha!) but it might just be my new favorite form of social media. Add me ;)
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  • this meme - so true! haha
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  • Corn in Iowa - it's everywhere and I love it ;) This cornfield is right across the street from our church and I think it's beautiful.
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What we've been up to
We have had quite the summer routine this month! On Mondays, we went to the splash pad/children's garden at the Botanical Gardens. On Tuesdays, we went swimming at a friends house. On Wednesdays, we went to the park or story time at the library. On Thursdays, Jack and David played at the childwatch at the gym while I worked, and on Fridays, Jack and David chose an activity (it was usually our local aquatic center or bowling)
What I'm excited about:
I'm excited that I'll be in the mountains later in July!
What I'm dreading:
The drive to get to the mountains :) We live so dang far away from everywhere that we want to visit! haha
What I'm working on:
Cutting down screen time! My kids are half way through a four week media fast that I forced on them ;) I had been noticing the last few months that they were always on their worst behavior before, during, or after watching TV or playing the Ipad - they fought over the Ipad or what shows to watch on TV and they were always whining and begging me for more screen time. (And to be honest, I would rather not disclose how much screen time I let them have in a day ;) So with a little encouragement from my friend, Elizabeth, I decided to cut them from it completely for a bit since I'm not in survival mode right now (they are at pretty easy ages where they will play with each other and entertain themselves for the most part and I don't have much going on this month). It's surprisingly going way better than I thought it would! They both stopped asking for screen time about a week ago, and they play together more, they use their imaginations more, they fight less, and they whine less. In a couple of weeks, I'm going to add screen time back but have a lot more structure around it.
No screens means our house is a lot more messy though! haha

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Jack's been spending a lot more time reading on his Leap Frog
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What I'm watching/reading:
I made my kids quit watching TV cold turkey but not me! haha! We are finishing up the last season of The Office (we have never seen this season because we quit watching it when it was airing after Michael Scott left) and we also started watching Fixer Upper! We love it!
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I read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks for book club this month and The Girl on the Train. They are both New York Times Bestsellers but completely different genres but I liked them both a lot! I read The Girl on the Train in two days! I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN!
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What I've been listening to:
I just discovered that there is a second season of Serial! Yay! I love this podcast!
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What I'm wearing: 
Usually shorts and a t-shirt :)
What I'm doing this weekend: 
Very low key 4th of July celebrating :)
What I'm looking forward to next month:
A quick trip to Nauvoo, IL, a longer trip to Utah, and my third time running the Bix 7!
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6.20.2016

Chocolate covered cinnamon bears, ground hogs, and chew your freaking food!

Something amazing is happening - the more I express my love for chocolate covered cinnamon bears (that don't exist in the Quad Cities) the more my friends keep giving them to me! These ones came in the mail from Rachel! I seriously have the best friends ever!
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Our couches are torn apart the second Jack and David wake up in the morning. But they spend HOURS every day burying each other and making forts so I really can't complain. I remember doing the same exact thing as a kid :)
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 This is the real reason I take my kids swimming as much as I possibly can (poor Jack!):
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My two favorite times to stare at my kids in mother-googly-eyed-wonder are when they are asleep in their bed and from my rear view mirror in the car when we're driving. I can't believe Jack and David are mine! I'm so lucky!
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We tried bowling this week and it was a hit! (Kids bowl free all summer long at a local bowling alley and it was only $30 for unlimited bowling for me and Spencer! Wahoo!) I have a feeling we will be bowling quite a bit this summer.
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Our friends hooked us up with free tickets to the baseball game last week! Unfortunately, it only lasted for 20 minutes because we got rained out! Jack and David were dying to ride the ferris wheel and we got on just before the downpour! They were all smiles when we first got on and then it started POURING on us! I think the workers forgot about us because we were stuck on the top for a long time and Jack freaked out and sobbed and screamed as he got pelted with rain, and like the good parents we are, we laughed ;)
Before the rain on the ferris wheel:
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After the rain:
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It was in the high 80s/low 90s last week with 50 percent humidity and these two insisted on wearing their snow boots outside to play. Crazies!
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Hurray for corn on the cob season!!!
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Yesterday was our 6 year anniversary but we celebrated on Friday night with dinner and an improve show.
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Funny story time (Spencer says we are allowed to laugh at this story) We went to a fancier place for dinner and it was SO ROMANTIC! (Just kidding, it wasn't at. all. Side note before I even tell the story - how are dinners romantic? Am I missing out on something here?! I can not recall ever having a romantic dinner. When there is food in front of me, I just want to put. it. down. Not be romantic. End of side note.) So at dinner, Spencer somehow got a piece of steak stuck somewhere between his mouth and his stomach. He couldn't get the steak to go down or come up (but thankfully he could breath, he was just really uncomfortable). He didn't want to go to the bathroom by himself because we were afraid that the steak would partially come up and block his airway so he hocked, and gagged, and spit over and over again right at our table as I sweated profusely and tried not to make eye contact with anyone around us. Right as I was about to get up and force him into a bathroom stall with me so he could continue to hock and gag and work that steak up or down in a less stressful environment, the waiter came. And then the 100 pound manager came ready to give him the heimlich if she needed to (I would have liked to see that!) But then he threw up his piece of steak (plus more) partially onto his dinner plate and partially into his cloth napkin.

So for our 6 year anniversary, Spencer gifted me with the with knowledge of knowing that when my husband is in significant distress, I care more about what people think than his well being and am not empathetic at all. (When all was said and done, I asked him if that had ever happened before and he said it has happened lots of times. So then I yelled "then chew your freaking food!") I really didn't want to know this about myself!!! haha! I would like to think that if his airway was completely blocked, I would have reacted differently :) (But thankfully it wasn't blocked!!!)
I took this right after the waiter took his spit filled plate and barf filled napkin (they made him a new plate but I really just wanted to peace out after the whole event! ;) 6 years of marriage and WE STILL GOT IT BABY!!!
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Yesterday we celebrated Father's Day. I am so lucky to have such an amazing dad, grandpa and husband! Jack and David sure love their daddy!
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Jack made this at church and we love it!
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Spencer and I are so cute (ha!) and accidentally matched yesterday - white shorts and Aggie shirts!
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Fun fact: our vacant groundhog hole underneath our house is no longer vacant. I discovered this last week when I opened my front door to go get the mail and a groundhog was standing on our porch on its' hind legs! It scared living daylights out of me!

6.13.2016

Stuff we've been up to






Last week, I tried and failed to potty train David. Better luck next time (in at least two more months!)
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It has been HOT in the Quad Cities! (highs in the 90s and humid)
We have been swimming and hanging out at splash pads to keep cool!
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Jack and David are on a popsicle kick, a band aid kick, and a Texas Roadhouse kick (they can't get enough of the rolls with honey butter!)
My mom found these mess free popsicle holders and they are awesome!
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We love our local farmer's market and stocked up on our favorite brats this weekend (mango habanero)
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And we made sure to hit up the (free!) backwater gambler's ski show since we didn't make it to one last summer.
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That's all for now. I LOVE summer in Iowa!






6.06.2016

Things I'm Loving

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  •  Friends that buy me chocolate covered cinnamon bears! Chocolate covered cinnamon bears don't exist in the Quad Cities, so when my friend saw some in Nauvoo, she brought some back for me because she knows my love for them. How sweet is that?! She's crazy though, because she tried them and didn't like them!
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  • Watching these boys play racquetball. Jack says it's his favorite sport and we have to play every time we go to the gym before I drop them off at child watch. After over a year of practicing, they are getting pretty good!
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1. I AM THE BOSS OF MY BODY!
2. I know my NAME, ADDRESS, & PHONE NUMBER, and my parents’ names too. (Don’t forget: kids need to know their parents’ cell phone numbers!)
3. Safe Grownups Don’t Ask Kids for Help!! (They go to other grownups if they need assistance).
4. I never go ANYWHERE or take ANYTHING from someone I don’t know.
5. I must “CHECK FIRST” with my safe-smarts grownup for permission: before I go anywhere, change my plans, or get into a car even if it’s with someone I know. If I can’t check first, then the answer is NO!
6. Everybody’s bathing suit areas are PRIVATE.
7. I don’t have to be POLITE, if someone makes me feel scared or uncomfortable. It’s okay to say NO… even to a grownup, if I have to.
8. I don’t keep SECRETS… especially if they make me feel scared or uneasy. (No adult should tell a child to keep a secret).
9. If I ever get LOST in a public place, I can FREEZE & YELL or go to a Mom with Kids and ask for help.
10. I will always pay attention to my Special Inner Voice, especially if I get an “uh-oh” feeling.


I've been trying to find a good way to teach Jack about stranger danger and then I came across this quote from this blog post, (which then lead me to the website I listed above) and I love it:

"Stop telling your kids not to talk to strangers. They might need to talk to a stranger one day. Instead, teach them which sorts of strangers are safe. You know who's safe? A mom with kids. Period. Your kid gets separated from you at the mall? Tell her to flag down the first mom with kids she sees."
  • The fact that we spent almost the entire week last week playing in the sun! My house was a mess, but I think we deserved a solid week of fun in the sun to celebrate surviving another Iowa winter :) Plus, I had post vacation depression, and the best way to get over it is not to catch up on laundry, but to just leave the house and pretend that the laundry doesn't exist :) 
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 They put their swimsuits on the second they woke up every day last week :)
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I'm so grateful for all of my awesome Iowa friends!

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The problem with Iowa is that when the weather is legitimately good summer weather, you don't know how long it's going to last. The next week it could be raining or the high could be 60. Plus, the summer season is so short. So when it's good swimming weather, you don't stay inside and get things done. You swim. You treat every swim weather day like it's the last swim day :) And it just happened to be good swimming weather every day last week :) Can't complain about that!
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We start potty training today. Pray for me!
“Stop telling your kids not to talk to strangers. They might need to talk to a stranger one day. Instead, teach them which sorts of strangers are safe. You know who’s safe? A mom with kids. Period. Your kid gets separated from you at the mall? Tell her to flag down the first mom with kids she sees.” - See more at: http://www.checklistmommy.com/2012/02/09/tricky-people-are-the-new-strangers/#sthash.yA0Cx6Dt.mTHl5xBC.dpuf