Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Kitchen update.

Kley and I worked really hard to paint our kitchen/hallway/bathroom cabinets recently! We are thankful to have a had a couple days kid free while our girls stayed with my parents over the 4th of July, or else we wouldn't have been able to do it. I thought we would get it all done, but it was a bigger undertaking than we originally thought, so we spent lots of late nights painting. We were able to get the inside painted before we got our girls back, and then painted the cabinet doors in our garage later. The pictures are tiny because they are from my phone and wouldn't let me enlarge them/arrange them like I wanted, but you can see the before photo, sanding (oh my word, what a mess!), priming, painting, and the finished product. I did things I've never done before, like use a drill and electric sander. It really brightens the space and we are enjoying it! Thanks to Kley for putting in many hours of work with me!

Friday, July 13, 2018

4th of July 2018.

Happy 4th of July! Ours was a bit different than normal this year. I drove down to Des Moines with the girls (where my parents live) on Tuesday and drove home solo on Wednesday to work on our kitchen cabinet painting project. Kley stayed back to work and begin sanding. My parents graciously offered to watch our girls for a couple days so we could do this, so very nice! We drove back Saturday to pick them up, so we got to spend some time with family on the tail ends too, which was great. Thankful for time to complete this project, even though it was a TON of work!

While in Des Moines, we went to the parade! We've gone to the Tulip Festival parade in our town, but they'd never been to a parade as big as this. There were lots of people and lots of candy! Norah loved waving her flag and getting candy, but did not like the couple times where the fire trucks or police cars sounded their sirens. 

I love this picture of Norah! My mom got them these adorable matching dresses. She's the queen of baby/kid clothes shopping and always finds the cutest things!

We love you Grandma!

My dad walked Lucy and Ellory around for a bit before the parade started. It was very hot and all the girls handled it really well. Very glad we had their water cups!

Group photo!

My Uncle Jeff and Aunt Darla were visiting too, and my brother Keaton came along too. (Rose and Jorie, my SIL and niece, stayed home because it was too hot for Jorie, who is just a month old.) My sister Kayla was there too, home from college for the summer.

As per their personalities, Lucy sat through about half of the parade with me and Uncle Keaton, with a few mad dashes into the street to grab her back when she escaped, and then I just walked around with her in the back. Ellory sat through the entire parade, just mesmerized by everything, on the blanket by my mom and Kayla. So funny to watch how different they are!

Lucy and Ellory tried their first suckers!

Norah kept calling it a party instead of parade and kept chanting, "USA! USA!" It was adorable.

We also got to see Jorie again. Norah LOVES holding her cousin!

She was already so much bigger and more active since we saw her last. So cute!

I had this great idea to get a super cute picture of all four girls and caption it, "4 cousins on the 4th" but this was all I got. Thanks to Lucy for providing exceptional photos this round. :)

Monday, July 9, 2018

Okoboji vacation with the De Jongs- part 3 (finale).

We had such a wonderful time on Okoboji with the De Jongs. We are very blessed to have such supportive and encouraging family. Quality time together is a joy!

I know many people will not agree with me on this, but amusement parts are one of my favorite places. Yes, they are probably one of the dirtiest places, but it's so fun. I love rides and am thrilled that Norah does too. (Kley, my husband, does not like rides, but he is a good sport about going.) We hardly go to them, so it's always special when we do, and doing special things with your kids is the best. The main reason amusement parks are so worth it to me and so fun? Check out Norah's face in these pictures. I love them all.

This is one of my all time favorite photos of Norah and I (below). I love it so much. 

Here's a lovely shot of our rear ends playing the water shooting game. Technically Elizabeth won, but was kind enough to give Norah her prize. She is pretty pleased with her stuffed minion. :)

Arnold's Park is such a fun place!

It was a perfect night to be there. The weather was great and it wasn't busy, so Norah hardly had to wait in line at all and most rides she just walked right on. I'm trying to take it slow and not have her go on crazy rides too early and get scared, but she's yet to ride a ride she didn't like. We rode the tilt-a-whirl together, which spins around pretty fast, and she loved it! That's my girl! Even if Lucy and Ellory don't grow up to like rides, I've found my amusement park soul mate in Norah. Though, with seeing their personalities already, I'm pretty sure Lucy will love rides too. Maybe not Ellory, but we shall see. 

Ellory was pretty content to just watch everything. I realized after that we got zero pictures of Lucy, but that's okay I suppose because she was running around like crazy. She loved going around to check out everything. Always have to have your eyes on her! Kley and I were talking as we were watching her run around that they are like sugar and spice in the best possible ways. Ellory is sugar and Lucy is spice. Their personalities are so different, but both so great in our family and we love them both so much!

Norah loved the small roller coaster! So fun to watch her smile and giggle as she rode it. (She would have rode the big one too if she was tall enough!)

Norah had seen this trampoline jumper from the road and had been talking about doing it all week. She was so pumped! She is getting braver in doing more things independently with bravery, like going on most of these things by herself and talking to the workers when they ask her questions. What a beautiful girl, inside and out she is becoming!

Our last morning we went to Memorial Park and it was really fun! I wish we had this where we live. It had a splash pad and two parks (one designed for older and one for younger). The girls loved exploring around! It wasn't super hot and the water was really cold, so they didn't get wet much, but liked the smaller fountains around the edge and watching the other kids.

This was not our chair, but Lucy acted like it was set out just for her.

Ellory's had had a fever for a few days prior, and on the way home Lucy felt so hot in the car. She had a fever too unfortunately, but it didn't deter her too much at the park!

I love Ellory's serious face.

Lucy loves to swing! 

I love this picture of Norah mid-jump!

Thankful for a wonderful week! Love this picture of ALL of us together- doesn't happen often enough!