How I not only survive but enjoy Mommyhood

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Okay I am going to be honest here…I am tired.  Tired of moving this silly elf, tired of staying up way past my bed time to research new bible verses. Then finding the time (usually in the morning before the kids get up) to update the blog about it.  That being said, I find it all WORTH IT.  Teaching the bible is so important!  I am glad that my kids (and hopefully yours too) are responding so well.  They are listening to it, talking about it, and even LIVING it.  So it makes it all worth it! So if you like this blog, please share it!  Share with others, so that maybe everyone will teach the bible with the Elf on the Shelf, rather than just have it be a naughty elf.

Day 11 the bible verse was about the fruit of the spirit.  Our elf was in a fruit basket of course!  (I am going to be honest, I did not think of this idea.  I got inspiration from an amazing Mommy friend of mine.  She is also teaching the bible with her elf and she shared this with me!)

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Galatians 5:22-23  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

This verse teaches so much!  Rather than doing something for someone else today, Elfie asked the girls to create a chart saying how they have the different fruits of the spirit.  How they can show these things.  We also discussed how some are easy, like love and gentleness, but some are very hard, like self-control.

I am attaching our note and the chart that I created to have the girls discuss the different fruits of the spirit.  They are all in the same word document.  Click kindness elf day 11!


I went to an adorable birthday party last weekend and realized I never posted about Kailani’s second birthday party.  I have also not posted in quite a while…things have been very busy.  So here are all the details of my littlest’s ballerina birthday party.  I wanted everything to be pink and girly.  I also wanted the girls to be free to dance, giggle, and just have fun.  We asked that each girl were her favorite dance outfit and said tutus would be provided on the invitations.

Here is how we made it happen.

First the Party Favors:

Each little ballerina received a pink tutu upon arrival.  Watching those babies dane around the house in their fluffy tutus was PRECIOUS!  They also got a happy birthday tiara.  I also used these as part of the decorations for the room.  I hung them up on a pink ribbon.  It really gave the room a huge splash of color too!

Each little ballerina received a tutu and birthday tiara.

Each little ballerina received a tutu and birthday tiara.

The next big decoration was a tutu hanging from the fan in the center of the room. I took a hulahoop and tied different colored tulle around it.  Then hung it from the fan with some curling ribbon.  It was so easy and looked pretty cute.

I made a tutu that hung from the fan.

I made a tutu that hung from the fan.

I wanted the living room to look a little like a dance studio.  A friend gave me an old mirror, it was green and not so pretty. I just taped some left over Christmas silver ribbon onto the sides and covered up the green.  Plus what 2 year old girl doesn’t love looking at herself?  I also brought down the stand up mirror from my bedroom.  They loved twirling in front of them.

I attached silver ribbon to an old hand me down mirror a friend gave me.

I attached silver ribbon to an old hand me down mirror a friend gave me.

Tissue balls are my favorite cheap decoration!  They are SO easy to make and each one costs about $0.25.  I made a bunch of these and hung them up around the house.

I made tissue balls and hung them up all around.

I made tissue balls and hung them up all around.

Then of course the crepe paper!  We just streamed them from the corners of the room to the light and to the fan.  It really made the room look fantastic.

The room was decorated top to bottom with frilly pink decor!

The room was decorated top to bottom with frilly pink decor!

The next part was the entertainment.  Of course I had lots of cute music playing and running around dancing was really all the entertainment needed!  (It was entertainment for the adults too)  But I wanted something for them to do and take home.  So we made adorable handprint pictures.  The moms had to help, but they are pretty easy.  I precut the leotard part and then the girls made the tutu out of handprints.  Finally they glued on a bow.  (I premade them for a quick easy thing to do).  We hung them up to dry and it doubled as another decoration.

A little ballerina and her Mommy making the craft.

A little ballerina and her Mommy making the craft.

A closeup of the birthday girl and the ballerina craft.

A closeup of the birthday girl and the ballerina craft.

The adorable ballerina crafts all finished.

The adorable ballerina crafts all finished.

One of my favorite parts was the cake!  I made a chocolate cake and iced it with pink icing.  Then put sparkly silver sprinkles on top.  To make it fancier I create a tutu to put on the cake stand!  Again, this was SO easy.  I just tied tulle onto curling ribbon and tied it onto the cake stand.

The cake with pink icing, silver sparkle sprinkles and tutu cake stand.

The cake with pink icing, silver sparkle sprinkles and tutu cake stand.

Blowing out the candles on her frilly cake!

Blowing out the candles on her frilly cake!

When it comes to parties…you have to have food.  Kailani really wanted pizza.  So we ordered pizza and then had fresh veggies and fruit to go along with it.  I put the fruit in muffin papers.  This made it so easy to just grab what they wanted.  We had orange slices, grapes, and berries.  The veggies were on a tray.  I also made chocolate covered marshmallows.  (See my blog post about these here)  They were a big hit and looked so pretty.

Pink was everywhere...even on the food table.

Pink was everywhere…even on the food table.

Chocolate covered marshmallows with sparkle sprinkles.

Chocolate covered marshmallows with sparkle sprinkles.

Eating a chocolate covered marshmallow with sparkle sprinkles!

Eating a chocolate covered marshmallow with sparkle sprinkles!

When the party was over each girl got to leave with her very own tutu.  She also got her ballerina picture and then Kailani gave each ballerina a flower.  The flower had a ribbon on it with a note that said, “I had ‘tutu’ much fun twirling with you.”

Each of the ballerinas received a flower when leaving for a wonderful performance!

Each of the ballerinas received a flower when leaving for a wonderful performance!

All in all I think the party was a huge hit.  The little ballerinas had so much fun.  It also didn’t break the bank.  See the bottom for a cost breakdown.  Here are some other snapshots from the party!

Tiny little ballerinas all dress up!

Tiny little ballerinas all dress up!

This princess crown tiara was the perfect addition to her outfit!

This princess crown tiara was the perfect addition to her outfit!

Cost Breakdown:

Decorations:

  • Tulle (price for 3 colors)- $15
  • Curling Ribbon- (I had a big spool of pink, but new it is about $3)
  • Hulahoop- I used the girls from outside – FREE
  • Tissue Paper balls- $4 (this made 16 balls!!)

Craft:

  • Paint- Already Had
  • Construction Paper-Already had but can get it at Dollar Tree
  • Ribbon- $1 for a spool at Michaels

Party Favors

Food

  • Depends on what you want!  We kept it cheap and simple by doing Pizza and snacks.
  • Cake- Secret recipe (1/2 box, 1/2 homemade) Kept cost down low!

Last night right as I am finally falling asleep, I hear through our baby monitor, “Mommy, come get me out of here!” from our 2 year old. So I make some smart ass comment to my husband about how HIS children never sleep and drag myself out of bed to go get her.
I am so tired at this point, I lay her in bed with us and try to get a little sleep. Feeling a little frustrated that my bed is being taken over by this teeny little insomniac and I haven’t had a great nights sleep since 2008.
That is when it hit me, my little baby is ONLY LITTLE ONCE! She is so sweet cuddling next to me, all of a sudden sleeping so soundly. I wrapped my arms around her and tried to enjoy the time I have left with her while she is still little.
As soon as I drift off to sleep, thinking that things can’t get any better, my 5 year old comes crawling in bed with us. She had a bad dream and just needed to be close. So there we were…all 4 of us sleeping in the bed. It was cramped, it wasn’t the most comfortable, but we were cuddling our babies…because they really are ONLY LITTLE ONCE!
Kiss your babies and enjoy every second with them, even the seconds that make you crazy.


So I have been working on this post for a couple of days, (It takes forever for me to find time to sit and type as you can imagine). I thought I would share my great tip with all of you about keeping bibs and wipes right where you need them. Well of course as I get ready to post this, my “Great tip” backfires on me. More on that later…first let me share my great tip.

If your kids are anything like mine, the word messy does not even begin to describe mealtime! I found that I always was in need of a bib and of course extra wipes. I stored my bibs in a drawer in my kitchen folded neatly (ok ok, they were just shoved in there any which way and the drawer was completely overflowing!). Then I would forget to grab one, have to leave the baby in the highchair and get up to get one. By the time I got back the baby had food everywhere, my food was cold, or better yet, the kid is screaming and is too mad to even eat. Something had to change!

Then I turned by brain on and started storing my bibs on the highchair. Makes perfect sense…why oh why did it take me until the 2nd kid to figure this out!

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When they are stored here I always have one right there. If she messes it totally up, I just grab another one. If she wants a pink one instead of a purple one, no worries, it isn’t worth the fight. I just grab a different one. Much happier mom and baby.

Now on to the baby wipe situation. We have babywipes in no joke…every room in the house! I have to say my favorite place is again, on the back of the highchair! A napkin just doesn’t cut it. Sometimes you just need to clean up with a wipe.
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It is also perfect because now that both girls are walking around, they can get a wipe when they need one. If their hands are sticky or they finish a snack, they know where the wipes are, get one themselves and even (only on the good days) throw it away!

NOW to how this lovely idea backfired on me. I go to take a picture of the bibs on the highchair so neatly hung up, and what do my surprise do I see? YES bibs everywhere…all over the floor along with babywipes! OY VEY…I should have known. Maybe now that it is out of her system, my little monkey will leave them alone. (Who am I kidding…I am so going to be picking these up 15 thousand times a day)


I am so excited about Kailani’s 2nd birthday party. Here is a sneak peek as to what some of the decorations look like! I will be posting (once things settle down) more pictures, tutorials on how to make the stuff, and a breakdown of the cost…it was cheaper than I thought!

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I am in the kitchen washing dishes (because that is what I am always doing! click here for my dishes trick) and I hear my girls pretending. I stop and listen a little closer, careful not to let them see me. I see Kares (4) trying to put a “leash” on Kailani (2). Kares has rolled up a blanket and tied it around Kailani’s shoulder. (I guess I should be thankful it wasn’t her neck!) Kailani is now barking like a dog and Kares is commanding her to come and sit.

I continue to listen trying to hold in the laughter. Next thing I know Kares has Kailani (who is potty training) in the bathroom and telling her to go potty. Kares says, “Go Poo Poo doggy. But not really Kailani, just pretend to go poo poo. Here like this, watch me!” So now I am rolling in the laughter.

Finally I hear, “Mommy, I can’t get this leash off of Kailani!” As I look closer Kares has it knotted about 5 times! Oh my…maybe I should have intervened sooner…they were just getting along so nicely (and I got a few dishes done)!

I just love when my girls get along so well. They are finally at that age where they can play together and enjoy themselves! So for now, they will pretend to be doggies, and poor Kailani will be drug around. Thankfully she seems to enjoy it and asks Kares for more!


I can never seem to keep up with the dishes! It seems as if the dishwasher is always running and my sink is always full!

The other day I was doing the dishes and Kares wanted me to play with her while Kailani was napping. I told her not now, I had to finish the dishes. She then said to me, “Mommy, the dishes can wait, I am ready to play with you now.” WOW little girl…play right into that Mommy guilt. But she was right, the dishes can wait. She was ready and to her, at that moment, playing with me was all that mattered. So of course I stop the dishes and play with my oldest baby. She will remember that her mommy played with her, not that the kitchen was spotless.

But here is my dilemma. When do the dishes get done? I can’t have them piled up to the ceiling. The kids are always wanting to play and the dishes never seem to end!

Here is the solution I found. I read somewhere (I can’t remember where and if anyone knows please comment and I will provide a link) that a mom uses a kitchen timer. She tells her kids to set it for however many minutes. When the timer goes off, she stops with cleaning (even if she isn’t done) and is completely free to play with her kids. What a great idea! My kids understand the timer, they can hold it, they can count down, and they know if they let me get 5 minutes of work done, I am all theirs to play with later.

I am totally going to try this! Maybe I can finally find a way to keep up with the dishes.