About Me

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I am 36 years old and a mother of two beautiful little girls. Kevin and I have been married for 11 years. He is a stay-at-home dad who runs his own business from our home. I am a part-time 3rd grade teacher and have been teaching for 15 years. I live no more than 10 minutes away from my parents, in-laws, sisters, nieces, newest nephew, grandparents, aunts, and uncles... I wouldn't want it any other way!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Birthday Time!

We decided to have a joint friends birthday party for the girls this year since their birthdays are only 11 days apart. It worked out well for the girls because they still have their family parties to look forward to, twice the fun for each of them! It was great for Kevin and me because we had such a nicely sized party, without it being too big! It was a Hello Kitty theme, which I loved because the colors were perfect...hot pink and green (my personal favorites since I am not a pastel fan). We even had kid-sized chairs to match because the girls got them last year as a birthday present from Gre and Popoo.

I love when things are color-coordinated without an added expense! We were blessed that all of the girls' closest friends (except Mitch) could be there. Both of my sisters and my two cutie-pie- eat-em-up nieces were there... who are both Kennedy's age. Katelyn had three friends from preschool, including two of their younger siblings which she and Kennedy are both friends with. The preschool moms and Kevin and I have become friends over the last two years since the girls have been in school together, they are a such a great group! My good friend Carie and her daughter came. Carie and I have been friends since kindergarten and she has been to every single birthday party that Katelyn and Kennedy have ever had! The three Scott girls, along with mom and dad... Amy and Duane, were there too! Amy and I teach together and have been good friends for nearly 10 years now! Katelyn and her friends made cute purses, hot pink and green of course. They also made butterfly bracelets. Kennedy and her friends colored Hello Kitty pictures while the big girls made their crafts. All of the kiddos played Pin the Bow on Hello Kitty, danced to a Greg and Steve CD, and played Hullabaloo, which is a great game for 3-7 year olds! Of course, we couldn't forget...

the cake...

singing Happy Birthday...

and presents!

The girls had a great time with all of their best friends. We are so glad that everyone was able to make it! Now, we get to do it all over again next weekend with the entire family!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Winter Bliss

This entry is for Julie in California and for Mike, Tiffany, and Lisse in Texas. Since y'all have plenty of sunshine and warm days, thought you would like a glimpse into what we get here. As an added bonus, Katelyn and I had two snow days this week and we were off for President's Day on Monday...gotta love a two-day work week! The snow is beautiful, but hopefully this was the last of it. Bring on spring!

There must be something up with my computer because all of the pictures and videos that I upload are coming out a lot darker than they actually are, they look horrible! Anyway, here is a short video of the girls playing in this glorious snow...

Thursday, February 21, 2008

My Biggest Pet Peeve

I have quite a few pet peeves, but I must say that there is one that stands out above the rest. I CANNOT stand children's books lined up on a bookshelf!...it makes me crazy! This issue began when I was a small child myself. I would look at the bookshelves in my classroom and think, "How boring!" I would go to the library at school and be overwhelmed with how I was supposed to find anything interesting in 15-20 minutes. Keep in mind, I was a good reader in school and was quite capable of reading the itty-bitty print on the spine of the books...that is all that shows when books are lined up on bookshelves. I can only imagine how the struggling readers must have felt. As you know, I have been a first grade teacher for 12 years. I am proud to say that I have NEVER had books lined up on a shelf. While doing my student teaching, I would literally cringe as I went into various classrooms ...all with bookshelves lined with great books that the kids couldn't see or find! From my very first day of teaching, I organized my books in tubs labeled with the author's name, genre, reading level, or theme. The books are all forward facing so those great book covers show and invite the kids to pick them up and read. Best of all, it works! The kids cannot keep their hands off of the books!

Well, I carried this idea into Katelyn's nursery when she was a baby. I had book tubs that matched her room. The tubs were organized and full of books that she looked at, chewed on, read, etc. She had full access to these books at all times (other than when she was in her crib). Then, the amount of books and toys this child owned started to get out of control. I had to reorganize for the sake of having some livable space in our old house. I am sad to say that I used the colorful tubs for toys and lined the books on her bookshelf - yikes.! It has bothered me ever since...for nearly 4 years now. I have tried to compensate a little by putting book baskets with some favorite books in various places around the house. This helped, but I still have so many books on those shelves. So, now that we are in our new house, I want to dedicate a room, or at least the better part of a room to making a children's library. Am I crazy? Is this the teacher in me, is it obsessive-compulsiveness, or is it actually a good idea? I don't know, but I am going to give it a go. I broke the news to Kevin last night...he always loves my crazy ideas. I bought these two great, hot-pink lounge-chairs from the Pottery Barn teen line that would be great in the girls' library. I have always envisioned a designated reading area. I just don't know where the best place is. Now I am thinking that a reading corner wouldn't be enough, I think we are going to have to go for the full-on library room! I'll have to let you know how it turns out once I have it all figured out and organized. I'll definitely post pictures too! I have included a recent video of my girls "reading" before bed. (The video came out really dark when it was uploaded for some reason, sorry it isn't brighter) Come on, girls that love books as much as these two do definitely deserve their own library!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Today was parent-teacher conference night, so I didn't get to see my valentines until 8:30 tonight, just in time for baths and bed. I did have a nice surprise when I got home. Not only did Kevin have the house spotless and the girls fed, but he and the girls made me a special heart-shaped cake. It was my favorite...Rainbow Chip! (I know I really need to develop some grown-up tastes). They even wrote, "Mom, We Love You!" on the cake. Let me digress for just a moment. I promise it is a really good story. Here I go...The last time Kevin made me a heart-shaped cake was the first Valentine's Day after our wedding. He started the day off by handing me the Saturday paper that afternoon. He said that I had to read it and find a clue as to my gift. Well, I read and I read, but I needed help. He had put a classified in telling me that my journey had begun and that I needed to go to a specified address. I got in the car and headed to the address, which was a flower shop. Once inside, the employees were waiting for me with a bouquet of red roses and a card with my next destination...the jewelry store! When I arrived at the jewelry store, they were waiting for me and had a pearl bracelet that matched the necklace he had given me as a wedding present. Of course, they too had another clue for me. This clue sent me on my way to Victoria's Secret...enough said about that gift. Victoria's Secret had my final clue, which was to head home. When I arrived, several hours after I first embarked upon this journey, Kevin had a candlelight dinner prepared and my very first heart-shaped cake...that he made! So, you can see how I got started on this tangent. Anyway, back to Valenine's Day 2008...I had special treats for my loves...a box of chocolates for each of the girls, the book Pinkalicious for Kennedy, Purplicious for Katelyn, and the book How Many Hugs Do You Want? for both girls. I was pretty happy with Kevin's gift too, Stephen Colbert's book I Am America and So Can You and a Stephen Colbert for President bumper sticker (I know, we are such dorks, but we love Colbert).
It was a great Valentine's Day! I hope you all had a great day with your loved ones as well!

Is This Really The Same Baby?

As Kennedy's 2nd birthday draws near, I find myself reminiscing and looking back through pictures from her early months. I have to ask myself if it is even possible that I am looking at pictures of the same baby. You see, Kennedy was born 5 weeks early. She was a wee little thing with saggy skin, jet-black hair, and dark eyes. By the time she was six weeks old, she looked identical to Katelyn. By the time she was turning one, her hair had lightened to a medium brown very similar to Katelyn's. Shortly after her first birthday, Kennedy's hair color started to lighten even more. By mid-summer, she was officially a blonde! I figured that it would darken back up over the winter, but it hasn't. She is now this adorable blonde-haired, blue-eyed cutie! Kevin, Katelyn, and I all have brown hair with green eyes, so she definitely has her own look. She is no longer this wee little thing either. She hasn't had her check-up yet, but I am anticipating that she will be in the 75% for height and 50% for weight! I am just amazed at how much she has changed in two short years. Check out the difference in these pics!

3 Weeks Old

Nearly 2

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Where Has The Time Gone?

I am pretty emotional these days as my babies are growing up way too fast. You see, my oldest is turning 5 in just 2 weeks... that means kindergarten! Are you kidding me? Kindergarten already! My mom always said that time goes even faster once kids start school. I can't imagine it going any faster than these last 5 years have gone! I told Katelyn that I was going to have her repeat the age of 4 on her next birthday. She said, "Don't worry mommy, I'll still love you when I'm big." Then there is my baby, my baby Kennedy! She will be 2 next month! Okay, now I am all weepy and teary-eyed. I can't stand it. These are the best days of my life and they are zooming by. I know they are still young, but my goodness, 2 and 5 already! I love the snuggles, cuddles, hugs, and that I am their best friend. I love waking up in the morning with two little girls squished right in between Kevin and me. I love bedtime stories, giggles, and silly games. I love tea parties and dress-up. I love these little girls.