Thursday, July 31, 2008

No Such Thing As A Free Lunch... Er, Dinner


As many of you know, I HATE cleaning day. Mondays are my cleaning day, and my kids have to play, be nice, and entertain themselves that day. I basically do as little as possible in the "mommy" department on Mondays, and do a lot in the "maid" department. I throw food at my kids like animals in a zoo on Mondays, and that is about all the care I give them (okay, I change diapers too, but only because I don't want the stink messing up the nice clean smell I have going in the house!;)

This past Monday was no different. As many of you know, on Monday nights after I have spent all day cleaning, I REFUSE TO MAKE DINNER AND MESS UP THE CLEAN KITCHEN. Am I lazy? Yep. But I hate messing up the clean floors, clean counters, etc. So Monday nights are usually pizza night. We have pizza delivered from Dominos almost every Monday night. I have been trying to not do that as often, but I caved on Monday night (surprise, surprise) and picked up the phone to order dinner.

When I told the guy on the phone that I wanted to order some pizza, he said, "Oh, it looks like you are eligible for a free medium pizza."

I was kind of taken aback and said, "Why do we get a free pizza? I haven't called and complained or anything about pizzas we have received in the past. We LOVE you guys!"

He said, "No, the free pizza is because you are one of our best customers." I laughed and laughed and told him that was great!

That figures. I am not a very lucky person, so this was kind of a fun surprise. But seriously, do you know how many pizzas we have bought from them? I'm so glad to know that you have to buy about ten thousand pizzas from a company before you are considered a "valued customer" who deserves a "free pizza." You see, they said it was free, but there is no such thing as free.

Just F.Y.I., that same day we got a letter in the mail from them with the coupon for a free pizza (I just hadn't gone out to the mailbox yet that day) and a note saying to look for "other red envelopes" in the mail. Oh, goody, goody. I can't wait!

I'm not complaining about the free pizza. It WAS a nice surprise. Definitely better than a kick in the pants. But just once, I would like to have someone call me and say, "You just won free pizza for life (or a million dollars, or a month long trip across Europe, or a vacation to Hawaii, or a new car...you get the idea) just because YOU'RE COOL!" :)

That was a great little end to my least favorite day of the week. Do you think that if I called again next Monday to order pizza, I would get the same response? Doubt it, but it is a good excuse to call and be lazy for dinner again on cleaning day!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Trip Down Memory Lane...

Okay, I have seen this on Jamie's blog and on Stephanie's blog (both in the last day), so I think I better play along...

So, what you do is you leave a comment with a memory of me (or someone in my family.) It can be serious, an embarrassing moment, whatever you feel like writing. Then I will assume that you are playing along with the little "Memory Game" and I will come over to your blog and leave a memory of you on your comments as well.

If you feel like playing along, post these same instructions on your blog and keep the memories going. I think it will be fun to see what happens and to find out what silly memories people come up with.

Let the games begin...

Monday, July 28, 2008

Etiquette From Four Year Olds

Yep, I have learned a thing or two from these two goobers today.

This morning, Peter Pan was on for the thousandth time in a row (Hayden's current favorite) and it was the beginning when Peter Pan flies into the bedroom. Lana sees this part and says, "That's wude. He should knock before he comes into their house. It's not nice to just come in like that." She is so funny.

It was just a couple of weeks ago when we were watching Madagascar and the part where they sing "Happy Birthday To You..You look like a monkey, and you smell like one too." Lana heard this, and we are all chuckling over the lyrics and she says, "That's wude." Apparently it isn't funny to sing the monkey version of the song. Hehehe.

So, today, as Lana and Tess are playing they are dancing to the Wiggles. I start singing the lyrics the wrong way (like I always do - hey a mom's gotta spice things up once in a while.)
Instead of singing "Do, do the move they call the Wiggle Grove," I sang, "Do, do the move they call the Wiggle poo." But this time it was Tess that corrected me. She said, "Hilary, please don't talk potty talk." Oops. Steph, will you ever let your kids play over here again???

These girls are so funny. They are trying so hard to have perfect manners at their sweet age and to do everything the right way. I catch Lana and Tess telling their big sisters to "stop and look both ways" before they cross the street. They are SO SWEET!

And I guess I have been put in my place today by a couple of four year old kiddos. I guess I better control my potty talk. (Hey, give me some credit. I may have bad manners, but I can spell! I spelled "etiquette" right without the dictionary!)

Friday, July 25, 2008

It's So Much Fun When Grandma Comes..

When Grandma comes, Hurray!...

My dad's mom has been in town visiting at my parents' house this past week. It is always so much fun to see her. Since she was in town, my parents were nice enough to host a BBQ with a bunch of us on Sunday...

I LOVE my dad's family. They have always been so sweet to me and my little family and it is fun to see my little girls go crazy over my uncles that I adored as a kid.


This is Rylee and Lana attacking my uncle, Bill, as soon as we walked in the door. When I was a kid he used to always call my sister and I little frogs, and it is fun to see him tease my girls in the same way. They LOVE him! Look how sweet my grandma is. I love the way that she just eats up watching family interact and enjoy each other.


I tried to get my grandma in a picture with all of my kids but I only succeeded to get the girls in there with her. I love this picture though. My girls loved seeing Great Grandma again.

And this would be why I couldn't get Hayden in a picture. He wanted to play outside with Brielle the whole time. When these two are together, we seriously don't hear from them. They are just gone having a fun time together.


What a bunch! And this isn't even everyone who was there - these are the only obedient ones who followed my demands to get in the picture.:) It is fun to see my dad and his two brothers in the picture. My uncle, Bryan, is the other one that my girls ADORE! Lana will snuggle him until we make her leave him alone. It is adorable! I love this picture - a whole bunch of aunts, uncles, cousins, my parents, and my grandma (and Kate).

I LOVE this picture. My grandma just loved Kate. It was so sweet to see how much she loves each one of the grand kids and great grand kids. She is wonderful around them, and it was so fun to talk to her for a while at my parents' house. (Thank you again, mom and dad, for hosting the BBQ! It was so much fun.)
Unfortunately my grandma left today to go home, but I told her that we want her to stay with us next time (if she dares stay with our three ring circus!) We love her and I love that my kids love to see her. They have already colored pictures that they want to mail to her. So sweet.
We love you, Grandma! Come again soon! We miss you!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I'm So Proud...

Hayden has learned how to do those 24 piece puzzles in the past couple of weeks. Now we can't keep him away from them.


He has watched his sisters do the bigger puzzles, so he thinks he has to do his puzzles on cookie sheets like they do. I am fine with him using the old cookie sheet that I was going to throw away, but now he uses EVERY cookie sheet in my house! This may not be such a bad thing...If all my cookie sheets are occupied by puzzles, then I don't bake as many cookies. It does stink to be washing cookie sheets all day every day just in case I get the urge to bake some cookies!:) It is funny though because he even thinks he needs a cookie sheet when he is doing the puzzles on the kitchen table. Silly boy.


As you can see in the pictures, we REALLY have a hard time getting him to take a break from puzzles. This morning, I got his diaper changed and was trying to get him dressed when he took off running for the kitchen to continue "playing puzzles." So I got out the camera!

If you prefer not to watch the video, that is fine. I was going to video him putting the whole puzzle together, but it takes him about five minutes or so, so I just taped some of it. But he is so cute, and I love to watch him look for the right piece.

video

And he's almost done...

Just a couple more pieces...

And TA DA!!! He's done! And he is so proud of himself after he finishes a puzzle. He usually says, "I did it! Good job!"

video

Oh, and excuse the scratching. Boys will be boys. They gotta itch what scratches, er scratch what itches...you know what I mean. Hand washing followed. :) What a cutie. I am such a proud mom (because of the puzzle abilities, not the scratching - just in case you needed clarification!)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

My Baby Is A Year Old

I can't believe that in just a year Kate went from this:


To This:

This girl has so much personality, and we love her so much. I can't believe she turned one. Some of my favorite things about her right now are:

~ She will totally cheese it for the camera. I LOVE it!

~ She gives me full on, wrap-her-arms-around-my-neck-and-squeeze hugs. And she does it all day! I LOVE her little hugs!

~ When she wakes up in the morning, she has to lay beside me with her arm wrapped around my neck. Oh, again, LOVE the little baby snuggles!

~ Kate loves her brother and sisters. She lights up when she sees them.

~ Kate gets excited when her daddy comes home from work. I look forward to seeing that reaction every day.

~ Kate likes to play the "back and forth game" right now. She will go to anyone, and then come right back, then go back to the other person.....It is the funniest thing. She would play that game all day long, I think!

~ Kate gets so excited when she stands up holding our hands. She thinks she is big stuff.

~ Kate growls (as you heard some of in the previous post) and it makes us laugh all day long.

~ Kate loves her babies. She is so sweet to her dolls. She snuggles them and says, "Ooohhh," while she rocks them.

~ Kate loves to "be soft" to everyone. (She rubs people's heads and faces. We had to teach her this one because it started with hitting and scratching heads and faces.)

~ Kate is our little puppy dog. She makes puppy dog sounds sometimes and she has been known on occasion to carry her babies in her mouth while she crawls around the floor. Cute thing!

~ Kate is into pointing right now. She will point to who or what she wants. Why is it so darling when they do that?

Kate, we all love you so much and have had so much fun with you this past year. We look forward to what the future brings with you! Happy Birthday, Dolly!

Now, bear with me. I have to put pictures of her birthday on here. It was so much fun, and this is our family journal, so I gotta do it!:)

Kate handing me some tape from the doll she just opened. Ew, sticky!

video


Kate trying to open the next gift while making sure she doesn't put down her doll! I Love her face in this one (kind of a, "Hmmm, wonder what's in here," face.)

"Aw, man, just some dang clothes."

"Oh, well, as long as I have my baby I am happy."

The sweet birthday girl and her sweet daddy. (Oh, and we better not forget the doll!)

Kate in her new big girl car seat. *Sniffle, sniffle.* I am so sad that she is already moving into a bigger car seat. She is getting too big too fast. She is obviously pretty upset about it. Oh, and she ended up in a onesie most of the day because she kept getting food all over herself! So, pardon my lack of dolling her up. I tried, and it just didn't last. Oh well.

Kate sitting on my mom's lap as they open the gift that she brought for Kate.

Kate and my dad. She was so tired by the time we had her little party. I think that if I would have let her, she would have just gone to sleep right here. But, oh no, the fun part was yet to come... CAKE!

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Aunt Tai was trying to help Kate have fun with the cake, but everyone laughing just upset the poor birthday girl. She REALLY needed that afternoon nap.

I called Target to order her cake because I love their cakes, but they had some dude working there who had no idea what he was talking about, so I resorted to making a cake myself.
She wasn't too excited about the cake. She just wanted to go to sleep!

See, by the time we got her out, she was not happy!

And my poor sister, Brooke, had frosting all over herself. Look what a good aunt she is. She didn't even care that she had super messy hands. She just wanted to take care of Kate. We love Brooke!

And at least other people enjoyed the cake! McKenzie, Lana, and Kailie went to town on the cupcakes! So fun!

Brooke and Andy with a bunch of the kids! I LOVE this picture!

Hayden was so excited to be able to play with his favorite cousin, Brielle! They are such good buddies. I LOVE watching them together.

And Mike and Isaak were matching and looking so comfy together. So I just had to get this shot. How adorable!

And we were so excited to have a special guest at Kate's party. My great grandma (my dad's mom) is in town for a week to visit, so she was able to come. We love her and are so excited to spend some time with her. She is the grandma who makes all the blankets for my kids when they are born. Those blankets have all became each one of my kids' favorites. They LOVE them! And we all love you grandma! (And Rylee loves to be a goof ball. She is showing off just a bit for my grandma and my dad - and the camera!)

We had such a great day. We love you, Kate! Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

You Know Those Things That Go Bump In The Night...

Well, this is what we hear in the night...(Don't panic when you don't see anything. I was sneaking into a dark room to just capture the sound.)

video

It was too cute. I could hear Lana arguing with Kate before I went in there with the camera. It went something like this:

Lana: Ka-a-a-a-te, stop talking so I can go to sleep!

Kate: Grawawawadadadada.

Lana: Kate, please!

Kate: Graaaaaawaaaa.

So that is when I grab the camera and just sit barely inside their bedroom door so that I won't be seen. Pretty funny. And as you will hear, Rylee said, "Mom, you gotta blog this." And since I always obey my kids, that is just what I am doing.

It was cute to have Hayden come in saying, "Okay Kate?" he has to check on his baby sister. So sweet. Then it is all about cheesing it for the camera as soon as he realizes I have one. Silly boy!

The giggling before bed is what it is all about. I LOVE it!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Surprise!

I just looked at the title and if I were reading this I would think that it was a baby announcement - NOT SO! We are not having another baby. Nope, this surprise was a party!


On Friday, Stephanie and Amy asked me to go out a get a pedicure with them. So at 6:00, they came and picked me up, and we went to get our feet done. I had never had a pedicure before because I had always been afraid that it would tickle. But I LOVED it! We talked and laughed and had a great time. Then I was all worried about getting home quick because Steph said that her husband was sick and she needed to hurry home to take care of her family.


So on the way home, Amy and Stephanie said they wanted to come in and see the new bedding Bill and I bought for our room. So we came in the house and I was trying to show them the bedding in the living room while Bill kept hollering for me to come in the family room. So I finally went into the family room and there were a bunch of people in there for a surprise birthday party. I WAS SHOCKED! I usually hate being the center of attention, but this was so much fun!


I got to talk to a bunch of friends from our ward that came and Bill's parents came, my sister Brooke came, my brother Jordan and his girlfriend Ashley came, and our good buddy Sara came. We laughed, talked and played games. People even brought gifts - stinkers! I would have loved just a get-together. I just have the most thoughtful friends around.


So, thank you so much to Amy, Stephanie, and Katherine for helping. Bill said you all helped him pull this together. He said that he had to call all of you to help him pull this off. Amy, thank you for doing the invitations. What a pain! You are all so sweet to take time for me, and I LOVE you all! I really appreciate it. (And thank you for the darling gifts you brought as well - again, you stinkers! I LOVED them. You know me well!)


Tanya brought a gift that was pretty fun...Bill liked it! :) Tanya is great! Hehehe! I wish I had pics of all the gifts. They were darling! Steph did a whole basket of "my favorites" and Katherine made me a patriotic stitchery. I got some patriotic candles from Erica, another yummy smelling candle from Rena, a gift set to do my own pedicures from April, a picture to hang on my wall from Sara, a gift pack of cards, post-its, pens, and other goodies from Lea and Eve, a sand art cookie mix (MMMMMM) also from Eve and Lea, and a few other goodies. What great friends I have! I really don't know what to say. I was floored by people's thoughtfulness.


And most of all...Thank you Honey for putting together a party. You really went out of your way to make sure that turning 30 was fun for me. And it was successful. You are so thoughtful and I had so much fun. I felt like I had a week of birthday, not just one day. I am speechless and don't know the right words to express my gratitude. But thank you! Now we will just see if I can top this when you turn 30! I love you and appreciate you so much. You made last week wonderful!


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Feeling Very Grateful

So we all know how I felt about turning 30 yesterday. Well, might I say that it wasn't half bad! Bill was extra sweet because he knew how hard it was on me, and so many other people went out of their way to do sweet things for me. Here are some of the reasons why I am so grateful and why I think I have the coolest husband, family, and friends in the world:

~ Jenn sent me a card even before my birthday! Wow, she was on the ball!

~ Marja sent me a birthday card in the mail! (She remembers EVERYONE, and I do mean EVERYONE's birthdays!)

~ Bill woke up early to send me an ecard and to take care of the kids while I slept in a little (Hey, 7:30 is sleeping in when your kids start getting up at 6:00!)

~ Then I opened presents, and LOVED them. I was spoiled! Lana and Hayden each got me a shirt, Rylee got me the kit for the first series of Wilton cake decorating classes (and she even thought of that one herself), Bill paid for the first set of classes for me to go along with it, I got a car adapter for my iPod, a COOL Flag Jell-o mold, a Home Depot gift card (read on to see what that is for!), and new body wash.

~ THEN Bill told me he had asked the lovely Sara to babysit our kids so he could take me out. Bill and I really needed a new comforter, and I hate the paint in our room, and I hate the color of our bed. So...We went shopping and bought a new comforter, pillows, etc. for the bed and then bought all the paint supplies for the bed and the walls in our room! Yeah! I am so excited! Now I have a fun project to look forward to! Okay, on with the list...

~ So when we got home, the kids were all happy (except for Hayden because he needed a nap, but 3 out of 4 isn't bad!) Sara did a great job with them and it is so nice to leave our kids and (should I admit this out loud?) forget about them! We weren't worried at all. And I came home to pictures that the kids (and Sara) had all colored for me.

~ I also came home to a gift from Amelia, my BFF's daughter. I was teasing her the other day and asked her what she was going to get me for my b-day and I asked her if she would get me a car or a million dollars. So when I unwrapped the gift form her, it was a matchbox car and a one-million dollar bill that she made. How sweet! She is so thoughtful and darling!

~ Then, I checked my email and had a really sweet email from my dad. I love my dad and always look forward to his emails. I also had an email from a high school friend, Pyper. She is another one who remembers everyone's birthdays!

~ Then I check my blog and people were so sweet leaving birthday wishes in my comments *thank you to everyone who was so sweet!* and my friend, Katherine did the sweetest blog post for my b-day on her blog. She is darling! Thank you, Katherine!

~ So I am already feeling spoiled and we have the little family get-together that night for cake and ice cream. Bill's mom gave me money to go and get stuff for the curtains I want to do in our room (WAHOO!) and my mom got me an apple themed gift. It had the Pampered Chef apple peeler/corer/slicer (that I have been wanting to get for like two years now ever since I used Steph's) and a darling basket full of apples, red dish cloths and towels, apple chips, an apple cookie cutter, apple streusel muffin mix, a cute red baster thing, and some other little goodies. It was so much fun!

~ And on top of all of that, I had friends calling me all day to say Happy Birthday and Jordan, Ashley, Sara all sent me birthday wishes as well. Seriously, I was spoiled.

Bill really did try so hard to make my day a good one, and his efforts were a success. I had a fantastic day and he took such good care of me, like he always does. Thank you so much, Honey, for all that you do and for taking the time to think about what I would enjoy and for being creative. You are awesome, and I think you outdid yourself! I'm good now through Christmas, and my birthday next year...I love you!

Thank you, kids for being so excited about my b-day and for coloring so many pictures for me and for making me feel loved every day. Thank you for being so good yesterday as well!!! That was a great present!!!

And thank you to all who were so sweet to call, or to leave messages, or to come and spend time with me yesterday. I truly am blessed to be surrounded by such amazing people!

And, no, being 30 isn't that bad (just don't ask me how old I am!:))

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Crap, I Am 30 Today!!!

Well, this dreaded day is here. Dang it, now I am no longer in my youthful twenties. :( In honor of this lovely day I wrote new words to the "brithday song" so as you read this be thinking of the tune of Happy Birthday to you...

Happy Birthday to me,
I just turned thirty!
My bum is all jiggly
And I’ll soon have a beard.

Happy Birthday to me,
I have fat on my knees.
Guess that’s what I got comin’
Eating chocolate all day.

Happy Birthday to me,
Old is so hard to be.
Guess it’s time to start lyin’
When I’m asked for my age.

Happy Birthday to me,
Know what really does stink?
When your husband is younger
And he looks like it too.

Happy Birthday to me,
Think it’s time for a drink.
Not of liquor, you sillies
Pepsi works great for me!

Happy Birthday to me,
I wish I were still three.
Then I could throw my tantrum
And not feel like a jerk.

Happy birthday to me.
Need a big shopping spree
With all of my friends who
Are all older than me!!!

Happy Birthday to me.
Happy I’ll try to be
I’ll just smile through this birthday
And forget my old age!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Our 4th of July Rundown

We finished up our daily patriotic celebrations with a couple of fun things.
First, we made a fun patriotic plate for a family in our ward because he has recently served in Afghanistan. So the kids colored pictures, and Bill and I wrote a letter expressing gratitude to their whole family for all their sacrifices on our behalf. Then we took that over to their house. This is what it looked like (minus the letters):


Then for one of our last patriotic activities, we painted the girls' fingernails red, white, and blue with patriotic confetti polish on all the nails. So fun! (Hayden even wanted his nails painted, so I did paint two of them - but he quickly picked it off. Good boy!)
***********************************************************************************

Happy 4th of July!
My kids were so excited for this day to come that they could hardly stand it! Rylee woke up at 4:00 because she couldn't wait. Bill and I got up a little after 6:00 to get ready for our busy day. My parents came over shortly after 7:00 and we had a yummy breakfast of pancakes, hash browns, eggs, and bacon! YUM! Then we got the kids ready and were off to the parade.
What a beautiful day for a parade! It was breezy and a little overcast, so the heat was bearable.
It was wonderful! While we were waiting for the parade to start, we took some pictures:
Not the greatest picture, but you try to get four kids all posed and looking perfect - all at the same time when there is so much going on around them!

My mom and dad (who were lifesavers at the parade, by the way) with all four rugrats! Nice belly, Hayden. He is apparently already chewing on his shirt in anticipation.


We also met our BFFs down the street for the parade. The kids were so excited to be with their buddies at the parade. So, of course we had to take some shots of all the kids in their patriotic garb. I know I am kind of biased, but I think our kids were the cutest there!


As the parade progressed, Kate was so good! She was just chillin' with my dad. How cute is this! She didn't even flinch when the firetrucks came by with their horns blaring and sirens screaming. Nope, she just took it all in. Hayden on the other hand...

Not a big fan of the firetrucks. Poor little dude. There was a ton of cool stuff that he missed out on seeing in the parade because he had his head burrowed half the time. There was a pirate float with a cannon on it that they would fire every now and then - loved that! And he missed the jets doing their fly-by. This year the jets were even followed by a jumbo jet. I have no idea how that big thing was keeping up with the jets, but it did. It was AWESOME! That was my favorite part!

And Bill was a great sport. He knelt out in the street with the girls through half the parade helping them get the candy that was thrown out. The girls love that part! (Heck, I love that part and I am almost thirty - but we aren't going there for another few days!)
After the parade we came home and started filling up the swimming pool to let it start warming up for later. Then we made some food for the BBQ and just hung out as a family until dinner.
Again, we hung out with our BFFs for dinner, and again the kids were thrilled (and so was I!) Here is some of the spread (thanks for the fruit cabobs, corn, and watermelon stars Steph! And thanks for cooking the ummy chicken, Honey!):

And the dessert:


And the kids put on their suits to swim for a little bit (even though we tried to talk them out of swimming because it was windy - nice weather for playing outside, but maybe not so nice for swimming.)


Hayden didn't last long. As soon as he got splashed, he was headed for the house. He looked cute though!

The girls had fun though! (Even though their teeth were chattering!) Here is a funny little thing that Steph saw happen - just to illustrate that our girls have all been raised like sisters:

Lana was climbing up getting ready to go down the slide and Tess was behind her. Tess reached up and picked Lana's wedgie for her before she went down the slide, and it didn't even phase Lana. Such funny kids!

And the babies, both on their second outfit for the day, were entertaining the adults in the house! They watched each other and tried to immitate the other's movements. SO ADORABLE! And, as always, Kate is cheesing it for the camera! And then there is Sophie who just looks so sweet and innocent. Dang cute girls!

After the BBQ, we bathed the kids and got ready for fireworks. Both sets of grandparents came over for those, along with great grandma Smith. We had a lot of fun, and the kids were SO TIRED! Lana fell asleep in my mom's arms during the fireworks and Rylee went in to bed in the middle of fireworks, and the two youngest ones were both asleep before it all started. Oh well, the adults enjoyed the fireworks!

This 4th of July was fun, like always, and now we can start looking forward to next year!!! Only 363 more days! Thank you to all those who came to hang out with us! We loved your company and had a blast with you!!! Let's do it again next year!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Patriotic Hair Bows!

Yesterday for our 4th of July activity, we made patriotic hair bows that the girls can wear on the Fourth. I got out all the red, white, and blue ribbon and told them to each pick what they wanted for their bows and I got to work making them each their own set of "custom" bows. They loved it! (Again, Hayden ate patriotic animal cookies and took a nap during this project. He is much happier sleeping and eating than making bows!:)

Here is a shot of each girl with her bows! Since Kate would just mush hers, she is modeling hers instead! She likes it! (Either that or she likes playing with my cell phone!)



Lana with her bows. She is such a cheeser in pictures! Can you tell she is saying, "Cheese?"


Rylee and her bows. She was all worried about how she looked in this picture for some reason. What a goof!



And a close up of all three pairs: So fun! I love the Fourth of July, just in case you haven't caught that yet!


And, as promised, here are some fun patriotic meal ideas:
For our lunch/dinner on the 4th, we always do a red, white, and blue dinner as much as possible. Here is a picture of some of the food from last year (yeah, not a lot of effort last year in the decorating department, but hey, I was two weeks away from delivering Kate. I was just glad to be moving at that point! And I look thrilled in the picture as well! Oops!):
~We always make home-made rolls and when you are rolling them out in the pan, you just food color the tops of them to make the flag (then your fingers are patriotic the rest of the day!) Then you can either just eat them with strawberry jam on them and BBQ some meat, or you can use the rolls for deli sandwiches (so yummy when the rolls are hot!)
~ Blue Jell-o with white Cool Whip on top. (Sorry, no fruit in our Jell-o!)
~ Watermelon cut into stars (way easy to just use a cookie cutter, and the kids love it!)
~ Pasta salad with rainbow noodles (Yeah, I know it is orange, white, and green, but ya gotta have a filler!)
~ Red Gatorade or other red drink.
~ If you can find the patriotic tortilla chips, that is fun, but if you can't then Doritos and Salt and Vinegar chips work (sort of red and white!)
~ For dessert, my favorite! Make a chocolate cake in a 9X13 pan (duh) and when it is still warm, but not too hot, sprinkle about a half of a bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips on top and lightly press into the top of the cake - just enough to keep them from rolling around. Then put the cake in the fridge for about a half an hour to finish cooling and preventing the chocolate chips from melting. You want them to be a little soft, but not melt all over! Then, take the cake out of the fridge and frost with Cool Whip. Then, for the really yummy part: Place blueberries in the corner to make the blue part of the flag and then place sliced strawberries into rows to make the stripes on the flag. And voila! You have a beautiful flag dessert and it tastes HEAVENLY! Make sure you refrigerate any leftovers!
If anyone else has any fun ideas, please let me know! I am always looking for fun things to make and do on the 4th! And I would probably have some more fun food ideas if my kids weren't so dang picky! But I hope you enjoy, and let me know about the fun things you do on the 4th! I would love to hear about it and see pictures!!!