This last month has been really good for me. I've gone back to doing all the things that make me happy and filling my cup up. It's been wonderful and relaxing. I think because of pregnancy and not being able to do anything like skiing or sledding or running, and being in the "limbo" stage of our upcoming move, I've needed to find my happiness somewhere. What I've loved though is going back to scrapbooking, reading a couple of books, doing a little bit of sewing and dreaming/planning our new house...whenever that may be.
That brings me to another thought that I've noticed lately...the way blogging has gone by the wayside. Ammon used to tell me it was the newest "fad" and that he wondered how long it would last for everyone-kind of like scrapbooking, stamping, etc. It's been sad to see lately how many people no longer blog. I've really loved keeping up with my family/friends over the past couple of years and feeling like I knew everyone a bit better thanks to their blogs. But I understand how much of a time commitment it takes, and it's not easy finding the time to dedicate to it.
That being said, as I mentioned above, I've been going back and scrapbooking all my kids memories from where I left off six years ago. I am doing it completely different than I ever used to, and incorporating all their school work/certificates/etc into and I am so grateful for our blog. More grateful than I ever thought I'd be. I've been using the month of February to focus on Ethan's books and it's been so wonderful to have things documented-the loss of his first tooth, what continent he studied in third grade, what we did for spring break that year and his best friends for each year. If I've had a question, I've been able search it in our blog and find it. It's been a little bit like finding treasure and I'm so grateful for it and the time I've taken to write everything down.
So, although the blogging "fad" is disappearing, I'm recommitting to it. Should there be a fire or emergency, everything would be on here and that gives me some kind of assurance that the time I'm spending on here, documenting our family and our life is precious and worth while.
Valentine's Week happened in full swing in our home....and just like always, the same traditions were carried on.
For Family Home Evening last Monday we talked about Loving One Another and then hit the table for some major love note decorating.
I made the sad mistake of promising the girls they could use glitter this year. It was in one of those moments earlier in the day when I probably was trying to finish and email or a conversation on the phone. Let's just say there was a glitter coat on everything for the next week!!! Glitter in our cereal, on sandwiches and in our soup. The girls were happy as clams to decorate to their hearts content and I suppose for what it's worth, the glitter was well worth their enthusiasm. It was fun to see our door all heart attacked and full of love for the next week. Everyone decorated different...me with cards, Ammon on heart messages, Hailey full on glitter descriptions, etc.
Fun cards from grandparents came throughout the week and were added too..
Hahaha...Ethan wasn't the biggest fan of all this. He opted for one general one for the whole family, then went back to reading a book. At least he joined in. ;-)
The next couple of days during the week were spent doing Valentine's for the kids classrooms. We chose something fun off pinterest to make this year and while proving to be a bit more expensive that store bought Valentine's, the kids all enjoyed making them themselves, and I got to sit back, close my mouth and not try to make them look all perfect. In turn, we had some jagged edged fish bowls, but four children who finished Valentine's all on their own and were proud of their own work.
We made over a 100 of these babies!
And here's a better picture.
Printable and source found here.
On Valentine's morning we did heart hair on all the girlies! Hailey and karli's hair was the same I do every year...
but Brynlee is getting older and has long hair, so we tried a new one I loved on her.
Source with pictures found here.
Also during that week, I helped Hailey's Brownie troop of 20 girls, sharing 3 school teachers, these boxes with homemade paper fortunes and Hershey kisses that they glued decorative circles too. The paper fortunes were so cute and held messages for their teachers that said things like "You are so beutifool, u shuld be a rocstar" and Hailey's, which read, "You will grow a mustache!". (Thankfully she has a male teacher.) We added them to some blank Chinese food boxes found at a local restaurant, printed some tags, and delivered them to the three second grade teachers.
For my own kids' teachers, we made peanut butter cookies, with Dove chocolate hearts on them, and baggied them up to be delivered with the fish Valentine's. I had a lot of fun baking during this week and it was fun to think of how much we appreciate the kids teachers and how much they do.
I am realizing now, I sure didn't get a lot of pictures with people in them!! On actual Valentine's Day, I was rushing around and most of the kids were at school, so they didn't appear in too many pictures. Here is the red lunch we packed this year for everyone. A bit more sugary then usual, but hey it was the day of LOVE!
Heart shaped PB and J sandwich wrapped in pink celophane, red grapes (strawberries were too expensive and rotting at the store), G2 red drink, heart fruit snakes, red jello and red topped Pringles.
All week we had fun coming up with inexpensive heart dinners building up to this one-heart shaped pancakes and heart shaped bacon, another night heart shaped grilled cheese sandwiches and red tomato soup, and we had our 12th annual Valentine's Day Family Candlelit dinner that night...same menu as always! We were so full afterward, we opted to skip the chocolate fountain this year.
* pink mashed potatoes
*glazed carrots and asparagus
* heart shaped crescent rolls
* pink float drink (sprite, pink lemonade and rasperry sherbet)
This is the gift I gave Ammon...a candy bouquet with a card and a date book. The date book has a ton of dates I want to go on with him, their addresses and a box to put a sticker when we've completed it. Some dates are to different temples, some are secret lunch dates when he's post call and the kiddos are at school, and some are bucket lists ones like skiing in Colorado or taking a trip to Hawaii! Can't wait to check them all off!
Ammon surprised me the most this year. Even the kids were surprised and Hailey kept saying "Are you sure YOU didn't do this mom?" Normally we don't do anything for each other but this year Ammon bought a new pot for our pot/pan collection. He chose it all on his own and it was perfect. We are in the slow process of trying to replace our wedding pot/pan set from 12 years ago. He also brought a rose plant and balloon, and a foot bath which he used that night with a lotion foot rub. I felt so spoiled...he did an awesome job this year! I slept so well that night!!
And because I didn't get too many group shots that day, we'll end with this one of all my sweet girls taken earlier in the month. I love my whole bunch to pieces! (Loose teeth, holey mouths and all!)