Five for Friday

Happy Friday!  It's been a pretty quiet week with SC getting over her cold, but here are my five!
Before all of the rain, I went and picked some roses from our garden.  How they managed to come back is beyond me, but I'm so excited to have flowers in the house (that I didn't have to buy at the grocery store)!
While perusing the Target dollar spot, I spied these little necklaces for three dollars.  Not only do I think that is a reasonable price, but it will be easy to slip into a card and not cost a ton to mail.  I thought I'd share, in case anyone else has been on the lookout for a small gift to send.  I'm sending one to my SIL and a friend who both had baby girls this past year.
They also had this cute little ceramic catchall, which was three dollars.  I'm still working on putting my mom's gift together, but she is definitely getting this!
On Tuesday evening I finally got my hair cut!  It had been since last September, and I was dying to get it trimmed.  It actually feels lighter, and it will be great for summer.  I also enjoyed the 15 minute drive there and back by myself in my VW bug.  It's funny because the husband drives it for work now and always thinks its a special treat when he gets to drive our Honda CRV, and I always get excited about driving the bug.  It makes me feel young!

I've been working  on trying to understand my camera better, but it now feels like I mainly just figured out exactly how much I don't know!  Does anyone have any favorite websites or tutorials they enjoy?

I hope everyone has a very happy weekend!  We are hoping to take a trip to the beach, so we will see how that goes!

SC is 18 Months: A Few Sweet Things!

Last week SC turned a year and a half!  I remember last year at this time she seemed so big, and I knew that soon I would be looking back and thinking how little she really was.  I will probably feel the same way about this time a year from now, so I'm really savoring this sweet time. While it is easy to think that I will remember everything forever, I know I will forget in just a few weeks, so I thought it'd be fun to record a few highlights. Thanks for indulging me!
Whenever we say a word SC recognizes, she does the sign for it.  My husband's favorite is when she does "the chicken" (I was being silly with her one day, and she caught on to it).  I love it best when she makes the hop hop motion for bunny.  She also knows the signs for stinky, plane, elephant, giraffe, dog, baby, please, more, jump, eat, tired/sleepy, flower and ball.  We haven't taught her all the body parts yet, but she knows her nose, ears, eyes, mouth, hair and belly button. I am not very consistent with signing, but she really catches on to a sign if we introduce her to it. We are working on her speech, but this has been a nice bridge to keep her from getting too frustrated.
When we pray, she knows to put her hands together, but we are still working on the whole closing the eyes. When we went to visit my parents, my mom said "let's say prayer" and SC immediately put her hands together.  Normally, our family holds hands, but we all clasped them instead which was kind of funny to see how quickly we changed up our routine!
Maybe we go to Target too much (we do), but whenever we go, she knows she gets a banana, so she will immediately start signing "eat" and pointing to where we should go.

She's also become quite the mimic, and will pretend to brush her hair, put on foundation, use deodorant,  and put on lotion.  She will also go and get your shoes and stand by the door when she wants to go outside.  It's amazing to me what she observes!

She adores all things bunny and will be very serious about "feeding" her stuffed animals toy carrots, water from her sippy cup, etc.  She loves bubbles, watching the trash truck in action, and seeing the school buses go by when we visit the park in the afternoon. Bath time is also a winning activity, as well as story time.  Some of her current favorite books are One Duck Stuck, The Little Engine that Could, How Do I Love You, Baby's Boat, and the Baby Lit Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility. With spring time, we've been talking about flowers, and I actually think it would be really fun to get her this book.
We just love our little girlie so!

Scenes from the Weekend!

This weekend started out nice and relaxed, and then SC got sick on Saturday night, and that colored the rest of the weekend.  However, Saturday morning was still great, with just the three of us hanging out, and then we took a  quick trip to the mall and library downtown.
I really wanted to take a few photos, since SC turned 18 months last week, but she just wasn't having it.  Being outside with all the rocks and potential bubble opportunities was just way to exciting.
Saturday night was more eventful than any of us would have liked, as she was pretty miserable, but she seems to be getting a bit better. It was really hard to get her down on Saturday night, and I should have given her some Tylenol to help control pain, but I didn't realize what was going on early enough.  After she got pretty upset, my husband sat with her and it was so sweet hearing him comfort her (and such a relief when she did go down).  I got my turn at the fun when she woke up again around midnight, but eventually we were able to get her calm.  As not fun as these moments are, a part of me also never wants to forget how comforting we are to her. My mom gave us a humidifier the last time she came down with her first cold, and it was so helpful to have that and some Vick's solution on hand at one in the morning.
Sunday was super low key with books on our bed, snuggles with bunny, a stuffed animal party and an extended bubble bath. I'm thinking that we will be taking this week really slowly, but I'm thankful that we can do that.  How was your weekend? Hopefully everyone is healthier!

Five for Friday!

It almost feels like it has taken me the whole week to recover from all of the Easter fun! Since SC had such a busy past few days, we have been taking this week slow with lots of blowing bubbles in the backyard, story time and the usual errands.

In addition to the Easter gifts that my husband and I got her, my parents also got her a pink polka dot tent!  While it's definitely not gender neutral, I love it and so does SC!  It's become a  cozy little reading nook for her.
One of my friends is having a baby in a few weeks, so I got the crazy idea to try to cross stitch a little something for her baby boy.  It's become way more time consuming than I realized, so I'll probably be talking about this again, but I've been hard at work trying to make progress on this thing! So far I've only finished the border and one of the arrows...
I love sending cards, but  they can get pricey quickly. I can easily drop $15 on just a few cards, which is kind of insane.  Awhile ago, my sister gently suggested I try checking out the Dollar Store, and it has helped save a bit of money.  This week, I was able to pick up some for Mother's Day, so we are slowly getting ready for that holiday! May is a big month in our family, so I'm trying to start early because I always end up feeling a bit overwhelmed.
While I've still made a few trips to my beloved Target, I have really enjoyed shopping at Aldi lately.  One thing that is a bummer is that they really rotate different specialty items quickly, so you have to jump on it.  I tried this flatbread a week ago, and was sad to see on Thursday that it was just a one-time deal.  At least it is fun to try different foods that way, but next time I'm stocking up if I see anything I think might be good!
For some reason, I feel like our house is starting to feel a little more homey.  My sister bought me some prints that I finally hung in SC's bathroom.  My husband stocked up on frames when he stopped by IKEA last week, so we're hoping to get a few more things hung up this weekend.  It's funny how just having something on the walls makes such a difference!
I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  We have a play date this morning, and I expect the rest of our weekend will be pretty low key.  After all of the excitement last weekend, I'm looking forward to it!

SC's First Trip to Busch Gardens!

A few weeks ago, we decided to buy season passes to Busch Gardens and Water Country, because tickets were pretty reasonable and we thought it would be fun activity for the summer.  We were a bit apprehensive how it would be at a theme park with an almost 18 month old, but it actually went pretty well, and we are already planning our next excursion.
As soon as we arrived, we headed to the Sesame Street Forest of Fun. My husband took SC on Bert and Ernie's Loch Adventure, which she loved, but the line seemed to get pretty long quickly while she was on the ride, so she only went for one spin.
It was getting pretty warm by then and the other rides seemed like they would be a bit much for her, so to the splash pad we went, which she absolutely loved. I think in the future, we might just go straight there.
In the next few visits, I want to check out Elmo's Castle, but the splash pad definitely made her day.
She also got to meet a few Sesame Street characters.  She wasn't afraid of them, but she didn't seem overly enthusiastic about them either.
We changed her, and then decided to head to the Land of Dragons, but got a little side tracked at the KinderCarousel.  SC rode three times and I think she would have gladly ridden three more times!
At that point, we were really pushing against nap time, and we were meeting up with my family, so we headed out, but it was a good introduction to the park. With that said, I got a bit overheated while we were there, and was sick the rest of the afternoon.  Next time, I'll be sure to actually fill the water bottle that we brought sooner rather than later.  We packed a decent amount of things for our little adventure (snacks,changes of clothes, sunscreen, towel), but we used most of it, so I think it will be hard to pack but so lightly.  Anyone have tips for theme parks with toddlers? It's not always the most efficient, but it is fun!

Easter Weekend Recap!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter!  I know I've posted lots about Easter already, and I have to admit that I don't think I've ever so thoroughly celebrated any holiday before.  I think we will have to continue the Easter spirit for a long time around here (or at the very least the plastic eggs aren't going anywhere any time soon).
On Friday night, my husband got in pretty late from a quick work trip, and then a few minutes later, his mom arrived to help celebrate the weekend with us.  Everyone was pretty exhausted, so we visited for a few minutes and then headed to bed so we would all be ready for Saturday!

On Saturday morning, we decided to go to the library's Easter bunny visit, and it was a lot of fun!  They also had live bunnies and an egg hunt, as well as a little story time.
And SC had her final Easter bunny visit for the year.  I hope she likes him as much next year!
On the way home, we decided to visit a nearby farm, so my MIL could see it, and SC could also see some more bunnies (and chicks, piglets and baby goats too!).  After that it was nap time!
The husband mulched in the front yard, and we got SC's Easter surprise ready.  Since SC is absolutely obsessed with bunnies, we decided to get her a giant bunny from Target.  On the way back from my husband's work trip, he also picked up a few fun things for her from IKEA, so she had quite the Easter gifts!
She immediately "fed" her new bunny some carrots.
We also fit in a little Easter egg dying too!  They weren't fancy, but it was fun to do!
In addition to all of the Easter fun, we took a trip to Busch Gardens, which I'll recap tomorrow.  It felt like we had quite the weekend!

Weekend Recap: Easter Bunny Fun!

I hope everyone had a great weekend!  We had a fun one, but I made the mistake of wanting to watch Manchester by the Sea, which is a good film but so depressing.  Fortunately, on Saturday morning we had the joy of seeing SC meet the Easter Bunny!

Our realtor was holding an egg hunt, so we thought it might be a fun activity for SC.   She loves bunnies, so I had hopes that she might not be terrified.  On Friday, I started talking with her about the Easter Bunny and explained that he was a really tall bunny who hopped, which she seemed to understand.  As soon as we got there she immediately spotted him and was super excited.
After a few photos, we attempted to go on our way, but SC was determined to go back to have a little more time with her new favorite bunny.  Fortunately, he was very patient and there were no other children waiting to see him.
I love this picture because this is her quintessential look of delight. All of her bunny dreams have come true!
There was also an egg hunt, which SC enjoyed, but nothing could compare to the Easter Bunny!
After nap time, we decided to head downtown to a library close to my husband's work.  The inside is amazing and has so much for children.  The outside is so pretty too, isn't it?
SC and I will definitely be going back.  I know I'm always talking about the library, but I really have new appreciation for the ones in our area and feel they really cater to children.

Buoyed by Saturday's Easter Bunny success, after church and nap time we decided to go to another little Easter activity.  This time SC got to see a real live bunny, in addition to the Easter Bunny.
She also went on a little egg hunt and saw a fire truck, which she was mesmerized by. I think she wanted to touch all the knobs and buttons!
And now we are back to Monday, but I sure did enjoy my time with these two!
Anybody else start with the Easter fun?  I feel I've never quite so thoroughly celebrated the holiday before!