4th Birthday Party

So I planned to get on this blog over at my mom's house (I have no internet, remember) and I was so excited to upload pictures of Sunny' party. Then I came to the terrifying conclusion. I didn't take any pictures of Sunny's party. So, if you are a facebook friend of my mom's, she will upload the pictures because she took a lot.

So here is the rundown of how the party went.

1. The first thing someone said to me is I AM CRAZY for inviting that many kids! Why!!!

To understand, you must first get the complicated psychology of my brain.  Growing up, I was THAT little kid who sometimes didn't get invited to a birthday party. I was very shy, not outgoing and it was easy to forget about me. It hurt.  I remember being 6 and my mom was more upset then I was. I just remember my mom sobbing and angry and wanting to march right over and talk to the kid's mom.

To this day, It would kill me if someone found out about my child's party and was not invited. In our world of social media and my mother who loves to share pictures, I was terrified that someone would get left out.  I think it would hurt me more then the child.

Have you ever gotten on social media or someone's blog and read all about a party or event and felt a little sad that you were not included? I have.  Why share something like that for everyone to read if you know feelings can get hurt?

Weeks before the party, I made a list over and over and went through our ward list to make sure nobody was overlooked or forgotten about.  It was stressful but making sure everyone feels loved and included is a huge part of who I am.

There was a lot of kids and my backyard resembled a little chaos. I admit I felt a little frazzled and disoriented. It was afterall, my very first time hosting a party that big. I had no clue what would come about.

There were games, jumping, swinging, eating and lots of socializing.  I hope everyone had a good time.

I did it for Sunny. That's a mother's love for ya. I couldn't of done it without my Rodney.  He kept everything in control. I hope my daughter remembers this her entire life.  Happy Birthday Sunny!!



Earthing is wearing no shoes and touching the earth with your bare feet.

That is something I feel strongly about. Although I prefer sunny wear shoes outside, I know if she refuses, it won't be a big deal. Just lots of baths and dirty feet.
Sunny loves playing in the dirt. As long as it's not in her hair, I am cool with it. We got her sandbox set up and hopefully that will keep her out of the garden.

Today I picked up this stuff called fluff. It is feather light and white. It looks like snow. Sunny had a blast with it. I did not have a blast cleaning it up.

Pictures of her outside in the dirt. I think we are practically living outside with the awesome weather.  I love it.


Sunny does Chores

Yes, it's true. My little one is doing chores for me. Hooray!  Today she helped put silverware away with no help from me. She had fun. This is the age where they like to help.

One day when she is a teen and no longer likes doing chores, I will show her these pictures .

So ever since Addy was born (for reference,  I am too lazy to write her entire name out, but we do not plan to call her "Addy") I have had the worse sweet tooth.  I can't stay away from the sweets. I can't even gain weight. If I don't have sweets, I crave them, which leads me to going to get them. Before Addy, I did not have a sweet tooth very much.

I've been thinking alot about going further with this blog. Every time I get serious about it, I stop myself.  I just don't feel I can get ahead without a good camera and some good footage.  However I feel overwhelmed at the idea of how to take quality pictures,  edit them, make them top notch and get people interested. It seems mind boggling. And do I have the time? Nope. Toddler doesn't nap ever and baby is a night owl. Okay, forget I even mentioned my blogging goals. Never mind.

Today was fun. Stopped into the nursery,  got my favorite house plants that seem to survive no matter what, got Sunny some flowers for outside,  headed to town for errands, home, dinner and now heading to bed.

My Top Favorite Photos Round Up

I have some really great photos and some pretty poor quality ones too. I have not developed any of these photos. I need to get on it. Here are my top favorites since Addy was born,  in no particular order.

This last one was of Addy's baby blessing. Sunny was too busy playing to get in the photo with us. I realize how much Addy has changed looking through these pictures. And the one of me pregnant,  I just want to cry. I miss and love pregnancy so much.

I love being able to capture moments. Even though I have hundreds of photos stored, I love constantly taking more. Memories can fade, but photos recapture those memories.


Making Dreams Into A Reality

I remember when I was 29 and still unmarried thinking it may not ever happen. I can be quite pessimistic and at the time I was. I dated a lot but didn't find that spark.  I remember one particular night feeling more hopeless about ever finding Mr. Right then I ever had.

I ended up meeting Rodney exactly 3 weeks later, getting engaged less then 2 months later, and married 2 months after that.

If anyone ever told me it would happen,  I would of laughed.  Life has a way of surprising you and working out for the best. Heavenly Father has a plan for each of us on his own timetable.

Paying tithing and fast offering has always. Been important to us in our marriage.  One of the traits I have always admired in Rodney is his strong desire to give. Whether it be to tithing, charity, or through service, Rodney is extremely dedicated.  He has been the example to me.

Another trait I admire about Rodney is his diligence at applying the prophets council into his own life.
Rodney has never used a credit card. He had zero debt when we were married.  He always worked hard and was able to pay for school himself. Almost 8 years into our marriage,  he still has never touched a credit card.

My dream was to live a debt free marriage and I am so proud to say that it's a reality for us.  I know i sound like a broken record because I mention this occassionally, but i want my kids who will read this ssomeday to follow in our footsteps.
 Sure there are temptations. Once in awhile we talk about how nice it would be to have a brand new spacious vehicle for our family, but then we disregard the idea because having no debt feels better then a car payment would.

We do face tempation often. We see nice things others have, but we decided we prefer to live minimal. In other words, we like increasing our savings account rather then spend it.  We decided one vacation a year was plenty.

I am so grateful for a man who teaches me through example.  This really is my dream turned reality.

In other news, today was rather chilly so we missed our nature walk.  But we did see friends at the gym and got our social fix today.

We also made homemade chocolate chip cookies and Applesauce, raisin and carrot muffins. Sunny loves to bake.

I cannot find my Easter decor stuff anywhere. Where on earth did I put it.?AAARG.  While looking, we found some tinkertoys and Sunny was able to build a ferris wheel with her dad.

And here is a picture from today. It was too windy so we didn't walk far.


Purging Continues-Handbag & Diaper Bags *And My New Perfect Bag*

I'll admit when it comes to finding the perfect handbag or diaper bag,  I am a bit of a freak....and hoarder. I have way too many bags and diaper bags. I either get bored with my bag or I find somethin major wrong with it as far as either being uncomfortable or a nuisance to find anything.

In my twenties, I didn't care much about purses. I used the same one,  a cotton crossbody I bought at a San Francisco street vendor for 20.00. I used it a ton. When I hit 30, I wanted to invest in my first ever leather bag. I was married and working and had no kids yet so I thought it would make a great investment. Who doesn't love the smell of real leather.  A piece of heaven.

However, I couldn't bite the bullet and get one. Most were way too much and I was used to spending no more then 30 on a bag. So I put it off.

When I was expecting Sunny, I decided I needed to invest in one perfect bag/diaper bag combo. I wanted something durable,  classic and beautiful.  I invested in a Vera Bradley. It was under 60 and cotton/washable.
Long story short,  it was all wrong and way too small for all the junk I was lugging around.

I decided to look into leather finally. Really, with a kid?  Sounds crazy,  but at the time everyone was going nuts over designer bags.
I looked into Lily Jade fine leather diaper bags. They are not cheap. They seemed too small.
I ended up with a B markosky bag and it was the softest leather,  but again too small. I actually ruined it by spilling a coke in it.

Next, I got a Coach bag.  They are top quality, but again too small for a diaper bag.

When Sunny was a few months old, I was
gifted a leather Storksak designer diaper bag. Pure luxery leather heaven! It was a larger leather bag but it hurt my back with it's heaviness, even with the shoulder strap it came with.

I then ended up with a Ralph Lauren bag and it was okay for awhile,  but again not perfect. I then went for another Vera Bradley which I bought used for a great deal.

Overall,  I have not been happy with my diaper bag choices. Its like finding the perfect matress topper.  You want it all, comfort and space was top priority.

Recently I got a Baggu bag. BEST BAG EVER! It is washable, lightweight, strong canvas, exceptional quality, low price, versatile,  beautiful,  spacious,  durable,  and I don't have to feel paranoid about it being leather.

I don't just think, I finally know I found the perfect bag/diaper bag. It only took a few years to find.
Now I am in the process of finding out which bags I want to purge or just give to whomever wants. The process continues.


The Purging Continues

This purging business is a lot of work! For years I have contemplated doing it, just never got around to it. It's tough saying goodbye, yet feels so relieving and light at the same time.

So how do you know what to get rid of? Hold the item, touch it, feel it. Does it bring you joy? If not, toss it.
There is such a thing as a capsule wardrobe,  consisting of classic items that are quality, staples, and timeless, and there is such a thing as trendy, low quality random  numbers that take up space and are not worn much.  These are the items that I am purging. These are items that are not age appropriate anymore. I do not plan to dress like I am in my twenties anymore. I would like to look my age, or a bit younger, haha.

Most of the purged items are going to DI or to anyone who wants/needs them. I am not doing eBay. No, no, no.

There are certain rules from here on out thar I have set for myself. Because I tend to be a flake about sticking to rules, I decided to record it here.

5 Rules

1. No more low quality items. I DO NOT need them.

2. If the best thing about an item is the price, do not buy it. In other words,  a shirt that was 160 dollars marked down to 25.00 is not going to tempt me.

3. When making a purchase, ask myself, is this a need or a want.

4. Do not give into trends. Stick with classics.

5. Do not look at fashion blogs. They are a huge temper to make un-necessary purchases.

I am not a bad spender. I consider myself a real bargain hunter, rarely buying anything at full price. The problem is, I have a closet full of sale price stuff that I am purging.  This stuff was cheap,  but nothing I plan to keep.

Here are the results of keepers after my purging.  I do not plan to make any purchases for a very long time. Having this simplicity of "less junk" is serenity.

Shoes for each season (classic, high quality items)
5 pairs of saddles
3 sneakers, walking, exercise shoes
1 pair of heels
2 pairs of boots

Clothing for each season
10 sweaters
7 cardigans
2 pairs of jeans
1 sweater coat/2 jackets. I gave my warmest coat I used up north to someone who needed it more. :)

6 capri's
3 crops
12 t-shirts
7 blouses, nice tops

Seems pretty basic, but I love it. I am actually working on Sunny's wardrobe next. I have already sorted sizes she has outgrown and labels and put them in containers for Addy. Addy will be my hand-me- down child. Poor Addy.

I think Rodney (who is not a shopper of clothes, and WILL wear jeans from high school still, appreciates closet space he has gained from my purge.

Overall, getting rid of things you don't wear in over a year is recommended.  There are quite a few books out that talk about how to purge your stuff and how to eliminate clutter and junk. I feel more organized for sure.


Outside for Hours

We hit the gym at our regular time today. I didn't work out much due to socializing way too long, but it was fun and we all had a great time. We came home, ate lunch and our friends came over to play.

With 3 little kids running around, it gets kind of crazy.  My friend went home to get her babies down for naps but left Eve to play with Sunny. They played for 4 hours total outside. I offered many times for them to come inside,  but they didn't want to. They play in the dirt, collected stuff, made dirt pizzas, jumped on trampoline,  etc. I brought out snacks and they sat and ate, then back to play.

This is such a sweet age. So full of life.  I really need to treasure this age because it goes fast. The teenage years come so quickly. I know one day I will cry as I reminisce these golden years. I will want them back. Childhood is not to be taken for granted.


Day to Day

Being a mom is so stinking hard. And I don't mean physically hard as in muscle strain and hard labor. I've done that since I started working as early as 14 as hotel housekeeper. I am talking emotionalemotionally hard. Emotionally hard is hard on the mind, body, and soul.

There are times I need to eat chocolate and step away for a minute and maybe cry a little. Nobody ever told me it was this hard, they only said I would need to see for myself.

Okay,  enough with the pouting. I am blessed and that's what I say to myself when I feel discouraged.

There is something so easy about a newborn and infant, yet something so dang hard about a 3 year old.

Today I felt like I couldn't get much done. We all have those days. However, the clean freak in me goes crazy when I know piles of laundry need folding and crumbs need to be swept up, etc, etc. However,  Adelaide really needed me to play with her. She loves eye contact and when I converse with her. It makes her the most happy. As she sat on my lap, I talked to her and let her know that she was first priority to me and my messy house could wait. Not easy, but I am working on allowing my house to get messy. So so hard for me. Here is my little time with Addy.

Sunny had just finished lunch and came and joined us. Later we headed out for our nature walk. Sunny found .35 cents in which she put in her piggy bank, she collected acorns and sticks and threw Rocks in the ditch. Only one friend was outside,  so I waited while sunny took turns riding his bike and then we were on our way.

Sunny is such a social butterfly. Everywhere we go, if kids are around, she must chat it up with them while I wait in the distance. I need to learn to be as friendly as she is.

I taught Sunny about looking both ways at intersections today. Each time we approached a yield or stop sign, Sunny would practice looking left, then right, then if no cars were coming, we would cross. I also taught her to freeze when a car was coming down the street and to stay on the sidewalk.

We stopped in to grab a blanket for sleeping Addy and Sunny grabbed her doll stroller and doll and took her doll for a walk alongside me. Reminded me of our favorite book about "Baby Dear"

My double stroller arrived today and we should have  it put together this weekend.

Hopefully tomorrow is a nice, warm day. I hope I get better sleep tonight and feel Better tomorrow. I Still have some purging of my closet to get done.


Spring Renewel

Ya ya, I know it's not spring yet, but I am in the mood for spring and when I hear birds chirping in the early mornings, I love and miss that, and when apricot blossoms are blooming on my apricot tree, I know spring is coming.

What do I love about spring? The weather is perfect,  everyone is outside and so social and I am looking forward to lots and lots of walks. I ordered a double jogging stroller. I debated on getting a sit and stand but when we checked them out at kidtokid, sunny hated it. They lack back support and she refused to sit in one. The other double strollers sucked and were way to heavy,  but the jogging stroller was lightweight.  Funny thing is I found a brand new one off Amazon for about 60.00 cheaper then they wanted at kidtokid.  With a 40.00 gift card applied to the stroller, I got a high quality one for just over 100. Major deal. We plan to use it on our Newport Beach vacation this April and at Sea world and the the zoo, so I know it will get tons of use.
I also debated whether a jogging stroller was appropriate for Sunny. I wondered if she would feel like a baby in one. Reading reviews, many people had kids up to 6 in them. As long as they are under 50 pounds, they can sit in it.
Also, rodney wants another baby and I am on the fence about it. I heard you are more fertile the first year after giving birth, but I just can't see myself going through it again just yet. I am exhausted with just two! !

Beside the tangent I just went off on, I am purging my closet big time. I am getting rid of so much cheap junk. Shoes,  clothes, purses, stuff that is low quality and will never be passed through generations. Why do I buy such horrible quality? I decided to only buy quality even if it means less stuff. I am happier with that. I find I hold on to quality better anyway. Real changes are happening around here.

So today was exhausting.  Lots of running around and so much laundry. Sunny has been peeing the bed alot so I had to do another diaper run.

Tomorrow will be a better day. I love that there is always tomorrow.


How to get her to listen & obey

A huge challenge I am facing is getting Sunny to listen. At home when its quiet and peaceful, she listens and obeys quite well. If I tell her it's quiet time and send her to her room with the stopwatch,  8/10 times she obeys me and will stay in her room and eventually fall asleep. This is a awesome strategy I thought of one day out of the blue.

HOWEVER, when Sunny gets with her friends and has fun,  she forgets about me, doesn't seem to hear me and this is a huge struggle.

Last week she ran off with Abraham after evening daycare at gym. They were holding hands and running off into the sunset together. I swear she didn't hear a word I said as I called her.

Today she ran off after church with her friend, Alexa, and having Adelaide with me I could not chase her down. This was a trial.

Sometimes I just want to give up. I know she's having fun with her friends. I remenv err being like her as a kid. I had a friend who was very fun. When she came over to play with me, we got wild together and our mom's couldn't restrain us either. I need to remember what 3.5 almost 4 years old feels like. They LOVE friendship at this age. They don't want adults interfering with their friends and adventures.

They have so much energy at this age. As MAD as I was about Sunny running off after church today, I remembered how I was with my friends at 4. I remind myself to not be too hard on her. She's full of life.

I know she won't always be this carefree, excited, giggly and free spirited. When Sunny is happy,  it makes me even happier. This is her age and I kind of love it.

This little one is enjoying her bumbo chair.

 I think I am going to start her on formula mixed with  oatmeal this week. Hopefully she'll sleep better at night.


Mango Salsa (see January archive on right for recipe)