Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Quick, Simple Craft

The boys enjoy doing crafts.  I love thinking crafts up, getting them ready and participating in them.....the only thing is sometimes, I just don’t have the time to prep it all.  This weekend we did a quick easy craft that the boys really enjoyed so I thought I would share.  I let them each choose one wooden thing from the dollar store.  They both chose a treasure chest that is just like Jakes from the Show Jake and the Neverland pirates (their favorite right now). 

This craft was really so quick and simple for me!  I pulled out our craft tablecloth and their craft aprons and that was almost all the prep that I needed.  Having a craft tablecloth is one of the only ways that we are able to do so many crafts.  It’s just a plastic tablecloth that is used only for crafts.  The secret is....I don’t scrub it or wash it in between craft activities.  This saves me sooo much time.  It used to take me forever to get everything set up before we could even start the craft.  If there are brush strokes from the paint on the table cloth I just let it dry with the craft and put it away.  If there happens to be a big spill I clean it of course but by having it on hand I find that I say yes to a lot more crafts then I would have before. 

The aprons are the same type of idea.  I made them for the boys well over a year ago now.   I made them extra big at the time so they could just grow into them.  I just pull them out and put them over their clothes every time we do crafts.  Now I have minimal (if any) table clean up and minimal (if any) clothes clean up....and that means Mommy says yes to way more crafts!! 

The boys decided that they wanted to paint each side of their treasure chests a different color.  They chose their colors and which side got painted which color.  Really all I did was talk to them while they painted....I cleaned the dishes actually!  I decided to incorporate a little reading into the craft by writing the names of each of the colour on each side.  The boys are continually asking me how to spell things so they particularly loved this part.  The treasure chests dried and the boys now use them to store their coveted bey blades.

Quick, simple and they enjoyed it!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Easter Prep

This year Easter seemed to sneak up on us!  Usually I spend weeks preparing decorations but this year I pulled it all together the week before.  We did our standard patio door sticker decorations and hung some Easter signs outside.  I absolutely loved our Easter tree last year but didn't want to do the same thing again so I switched it up a little.  I just bought decorations from Walmart and the dollar store and glued them on to some branches that Jason cut for me.  I placed them in the foam for artificial flower arrangements to hold it firm.  It was quick and simple and I loved how it turned out again!

We decorated our eggs again.  People keep asking me about our egg decorating.  To be honest the boys do 99% of it.  I prepare the colours and I let them do the rest.  I supervise and make sure they take turns and don't go silly around the dye but this is the third year it has worked out great.  I don't blow out the egg yolks and I don't hard boil the eggs.  We just take them right out of the carton and die them and use them only as decorations.  They have lasted 1-2 weeks out in our house without smelling at all.  I don't want to jinx myself but we haven't even brocken any while decorating.  This year we added some animal themed stickers from a egg decorating package to them.

We hosted Easter breakfast at our house this year and it turned out great!  We prepared a special "Easter breakfast" ( a casserole type thing with the eggs, onions, peppers, bacon hash browns, cheese etc) all together.  I also made Maple Cinnamon roles.  We had Easter cookies, carrot muffins and of course devilled eggs to serve as well.  I don't use pinterest often but when I do I always find neat things that I try right away.  This year was the chick shaped devilled eggs.  The turned out great and tasted delicious!

I love setting the table for a special gathering.  This year I found a youtube video on how to make napkins look like bunnies.  I have no idea who has time to make youtube video's of this stuff but to the person who made that one.... I am thankful!

Hmm after writing this post I'm a little excited to host another I go to research some more neat ideas!!

Monday, April 23, 2012


This year we actually had fantastic weather for the entire Easter weekend.  It was great to be able to enjoy the nice outdoor weather, especially since the boys got new bikes for Easter.  Our boys love everything outdoors and bikes may be very close to the top of their favorite list.  The photos below show just how much they enjoy their new bikes.



I can actually say I wouldn't have changed a thing about our Easter weekend.  We hosted Easter breakfast this year at our home.  The boys got up nice and early so it worked out perfect.

 The Easter bunny was so organized this year!!  He even color co-ordinated the eggs for each child. 
He left a note for each of them telling them what color of eggs were designated for them.  This worked out better then the Easter bunny could have ever thought!  They weren't fighting and racing each other to each egg, they were actually working as a team and would yell to the other if they found one of their eggs!

The boys were super excited with their Easter bunny loot this year.  School books, sticker, chocolate and of course more outdoor toys! 

 Mathew finding his "jackpot" egg.  Each of the boys had one giant egg.  Inside was a playmobil person with accessories ie. canon, boat etc
 Running like crazy searching for their eggs.

 Scoping out their loot. It was fun to watch them get so excited over every little thing. "Look Zackie I got a super de dooper super ball"

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Spring is in the air

This year the weather has been crazy.  From +22 C to -10 C from day to day.  How do you tell spring has officially begun?  The calendar date? The return of the birds?  The snow is gone?  At our house you can tell spring has officially started for us when our trampoline is set up!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Sometimes I can't believe how big the boys are getting.  It seems like yesterday that they were playing with the baby basketball game that we sat on the floor.  Now they are out in the yard and are in love with all sports.  They play sports together, apart, side by side...just about any way you can think of.  Mathew enjoys sports but after awhile he looses interest and usually ends up in the playhouse or playing with his cars or in the sand box.  Not Zachary, that boy lives and breaths sports.  You name the sport he will be there to play for as long as we allow.  This year he has started to excel at more sports, particularly basketball.  He keeps wanting us to raise the net higher and higher so he can play "just like my daddy".  Ahh cute little buddy!

This picture reminds me of the quote "Dreams come a size too big so we can grow into them!"

Friday, April 13, 2012


Sometimes the silliness is a welcome break from the normal routine!  I love how kids can just make us laugh when we least expect it.  On the day below I was alone with the twins getting them ready to go somewhere.  I was going through the checklist, everyone has a coat, rubber boots, snacks etc.  I turned to find little Zachy staring at me like this and couldn't help but bursting out in laughter.  Sometimes you just need to embrace the silliness and laugh until it hurts!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Base Easter Egg Hunt

Being a military family we like to try and participate in activities that are run at the bases we are posted to.  A week before Easter the base hosted their annual Easter egg hunt.  We used to participate in this yearly when we live in Germany but have only been to it one other time here in North Bay.  Last year it was sooo cold and windy that we could barely last the 5 minutes outside.  This year it was still cold but the sun was out so we were actually able to enjoy the beautiful weather a bit. 
The outing started out with the opportunity to meet the Easter bunny.  The boys thought that was so much fun especially since this Easter bunny liked to give high fives and act silly.

They bring all the kids to the back yard of the building and explain the rules.  Every child is to pick three eggs.  The boys made their plans on which eggs they were going to pick.  They discussed which colours they would pick.  Zach concocted the plan that he would run to the eggs right beside the furthest tree.

Then they announce on your marks, get set, go!  All the kids are off and all their plans that they had decided on were down the tubes.  It was so funny, neither one got the colours or locations they had though about.  Mathew said here really wanted to get the far egg but there was this pink one that kept shinning in his eye so he took that one instead hahaha!

This year was a different experience for Jason and I because we didn't have to help the boys get their eggs at all.  They waited in line, listened to the directions and ran and got their eggs all on their own and then ran back to show us their loot.

After you collect your eggs you go inside and they open them up and give you three prizes.  Zachary ended up with all chocolate and Mathew received three tiny toys.  It was really cute to see the boys in the car with their loot.  Zachary volunteered to share his chocolate and Mathew said the bunny must have made a mistake so he opened up his pack of 4 wooden coloring eggs and gave 2 to Zach.  He claimed that it would not be fun to do if Zach didn't have any!  Ahhh sweet boys!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Wishes

I will definately write a longer easter post in the next day or two but just wanted to wish everyone a Happy Easter.  Our family had an absolutely fantastic weekend and we hope all of you guys did too!

Little easter sneak peak.....

Hope you guys were as excited as we were at our house for Easter!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Chair Evolution

The Evolution of Our Chairs

The weather has been warming up here and Jason and I have started our spring cleaning.  We have two lofts in our garage that we rotate the seasonal equipment from.  Up goes all the ski’s etc into the storage area and down come the golf clubs, bikes etc.  The back part of the storage area is all the baby stuff that we decided to keep.  When I was up there last weekend I realized just how much stuff we actually have!  Having the twins meant having two of almost everything.  I had to move a highchair over to get something down and that’s when Jason and I got to discussing just how many 'eating' type of chairs we have gone through since the boys have been born and just how much of a help they each were at different stages of the boys lives. 

Their first chairs that we used for feeding were actually their bouncy chairs.  We would sit them both in their bouncy chairs and that would allow one adult to easily feed two babies at once! 

Once solid food started the boys moved into their highchairs.  We had peg perego highchairs with wipeable material backs.  I would highly recommend highchairs that are easy to wipe because many meals got very messy!!  They had a removable insert on the tray so easy to grab it and bring it to the sink to wash. 

To be honest though our highchair trays were very easy to remove but often I just removed the entire thing!  Another nice feature was that they were able to go from a slightly reclining to upright position as the boys grew. 

The height was adjustable as well which was nice because I would put them at the highest position if I was standing to feed them or at table height if I was sitting on the kitchen chair.  We used their highchairs until they were 2.5 years old for every meal!  Yes that is right, we pulled their chairs up beside the table and they ate all their meals with us in their highchairs!! 

They received bumbo’s and tray’s as gifts for their first Christmas.  They used them to play in but we also used them as highchairs to travel with when they were still pretty young.  They were pretty small and easy to pack.
The boys went to an at home daycare for 2 months starting when they were 10 months old.  We purchased portable booster chairs that attached to seats for their daycare provider.  We also used these for meals and traveling once the boys became too big to eat in bumbo’s anymore.  We still used these until about 6 months ago as booster seats for when we went to visit people.  With the trays attached they were perfect; especially when we were visiting friends that did not already have kid stuff.  We just left them in the back of the truck for the longest time and would run out to get them whenever we needed them.

The stokke trip trap highchair that we purchased almost 2 years ago now are still being used to this day and I foresee we will still be using them for years to come.  They have been absolutely fantastic.  There are about 10 different slots that you can input the actual seat and then the foot rest in.  They match our table perfectly so I will say that 99% of the people who come to our house and eat with us don’t even realize that the boys have a different chair then everyone else at the table.  We can just adjust the seat part down as the boys grow to make sure they are always at the right height at the table.  They never have to sit on their knees in order to reach the table like the rest of us.  I also love the fact that their feet/legs are then supported.   To me it is more comfy when my feet rest of the floor on my chair in comparison to when they dangle so I think it’s the same for them too.
In the above picture you can see that they are at the same height as adults at the table.

This is a picture from halloween.  You can see the chair from the side here and see how their feet are supported.

And that my friend has been the evolution of the boys chairs so far.  They are all completely different yet have each served us with a different stage in our boys feeding.  Which different types of chairs have you tried and loved and/or hated?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

St Patrick's Day Craft

Well I have no idea how the month of March seems to have flown by in the blink of an eye!  I swear it just started.  Even though the time has flown, I don’t want to forget some of the things that have made this month memorable for us.

St. Patrick ’s Day was on a Saturday this year.  At first I was a little disappointed that the boys wouldn’t be at school to celebrate but then I realized we would get to do activities all day long as a family.

The day started out with green eggs.  The boys cracked the eggs (yes I still cringe at the thought of all the mess that occurs but they are actually learning how to do it and enjoy helping so that is what counts right?). 

 Jason and I wore our hats we had bought for a St Patty’s day we celebrated in Ireland (pre-kids hahaha).  The boys loved them so much they wanted to make their own st Patrick’s Day hats so later that day we made them some.

We painted rainbows, talked about leprechauns, talked about chasing rainbows and about clovers.  We talked about Ireland and all the pretty sights there.  We talked about Saint Patrick himself.  It was fun just learning new things all together.  It’s amazing how you can incorporate lessons into anything with kids.  To them painting rainbows was just a fun craft, to me it gave me a chance to first teach/go over the colours of the rainbows with them, talk about how secondary colours are made and see firsthand colour mixing. 

That morning we went as a family to the maple syrup shack sporting our green attire of course.

We took our annual st Patrick ’s Day picture.  The boys thought it was hilarious to see the pose from when they were really little.  I can’t believe how quickly they are growing!!

Mathew and I finished our evening by visiting my grandmother in the hospital.  He wore his hat he had made and brought paper and markers to draw her St Patrick ’s Day pictures and hang them on her board.