Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Pumpkin Patch 2017

It's one of my favorite times of the year!
Pumpkin Patch time๐ŸŽƒ

We've started a fun little tradition in October where we (shocking, I know) go to the pumpkin patch, take a hayride, & pick out a pumpkin!  We also sneak a visit to the best chocolate shop, & find excuses to eat bad food all day before we paint them;)
Puts me in ALL the festive fall vibes!
Give me all the pumpkins๐ŸŽƒ๐ŸŽƒ๐ŸŽƒ
No, I really wanted to take every single one of them home with me๐Ÿค—

Sure, we may have sweated like pigs & Conley refused to nap ...
=Mr. Crabby Pants.
I know, who doesn't let an almost two year old sit in the drivers seat of a tractor pulling 20 people.
Gosh, mom.  Get a grip on life๐Ÿ‘ถ๐Ÿผ  
Nonetheless, it was such a sweet day!
What are your favorite fall traditions?
Monday, October 9, 2017

Brother Snapshots || 2 Years + 4.5 Years

What's your name Conley? Ummmmm, Halloween. 
How old are you going to be? Ummmmmm, October.

Me too, Conley.  Mama too.

I swear, I don't how many times I've thought this week...
Oh, how I wish I could just freeze time & soak these October fall days in, along with the ages my boys are, as they should rightfully be remembered & cherished...
Do we ever really feel content with the speed of time & what we accomplish each fleeting day?  Kinda like the licks to get to the center of the Tootsie Roll pop-
the world (as we know it here on earth) may never know.

(Almost) TWO
As we creep closer every day to my youngest baby's second birthday, 
I can't quit thinking of how MUCH he has changed this year.
The time span between one year and two years old might be the most change a child ever goes through!  My almost two year old loves cheese, ronis (macaroni) & Moana.  He always says "ummmm" before every word, is his brothers shadow & best friend + worst enemy.  His chunky little legs are growing tall & skinny.  His full sweet face & big squeezable cheeks are growing thinner.  He has so many teeth-big ones, too!  He no longer grunts & points, he speaks in full (insanely smart) sentences.  He refers to himself in third person (Conley's turn!) & will do the meanest thing he can think of & then turn it all around with a snuggle into the side of my neck & a "lub you, mommy."  And that grin.  Ugh.  He loves to make everybody laugh & never stops.  Ever.  He has to sleep with 34,323 stuffed animals a night & takes at least four everywhere we go (lineup: m-elmo, moo moo, puppy, & sharky).

This fall, it has been my specific prayer that God uses Conley's fierce, energetic, & stubborn soul to fight the good fight for Christ.  Of course my prayer for both my stinkers is for salvation (& assurance without the doubt I have faced), but not stopping there.  Conley has so much to contribute to the life God has so graciously gave him.  He is going to be a go getter.  
I pray he never follows the world, caves to peer pressure, but allows God to use his special traits to follow his Savior, as he can be used to lead others straight to him!
 What will I learn of my youngest that I can add to his prayer by next fall, I wonder?

  Everytime I looks at that face, I see my newborn baby Cam.  
Especially when his top lip covers his bottom one.
I guess I always will.
Cam is full of questions & thoughts.  He is full of passion for things like green, Ghostbusters, cheesesticks & saying, "I'm so hungry mooooooom."  
<<Like all the time, homeboy is a bottomless pit.>>  
He always wants to pray that he doesn't have bad dreams & wants to thank God for ...
you guessed it... f o o d.  He loves legos & playing any type of ball.  He began the year by saying he wanted to be a "worker" & most recently decided he wants to play football for the Seattle SeaHawks (of which he has also referred to as the "Hehawks" + "Mohawks.")  His newly appointed favorite team...because...they're, mmmm hmmmm, GREEN.  He is his little brothers biggest protector & enemy all at the same time.  He will go from "Mom, he's so cute.  I'm so glad I have a little brother " to "Mom, why did you have to have him???"  He has a heart of gold underneath all the sillies & his contagious smile.  He can't stand to think he has hurt someone's feelings & is extra cautious & sensitive about it (a trait he unfortunately inherited from me #peoplepleaser101).  He always tells on himself when he does something wrong & punishes himself by harsh overly dramatic grieving over his sketchy choices.

My current prayer for Cam is that God will use all his passion, honesty, & gentle heart for His purpose.  Cam is so humble & in tune with the way other people feel, that I know without a doubt, God has planted those traits in him because he has huge purpose.  He wants to please others so badly even at his young age, and I pray that God takes over & replaces that.      

My prayer for both my boys is that they will be "mighty men for Christ" one day.
  Before my boys were born, I know I've shared here before, about how I heard a preacher mention, as he was growing up, he always heard his mother praying this over him at night.  

That really just stuck with me even then, for some reason, & has always been on my heart since I've been blessed with BOYS:).  It is such as sweet reminder that God can use any of us if we are willing.  And with each special piece of character, lies a gift waiting to be put to work for God's purpose for our lives.  Wow.  I will never get over that...

If I accomplish nothing else in this life, I pray my Mr. & I raise Godly men that will represent Jesus well.  Mistakes are sure to happen along the way, I know.  
But thats why mercy & forgiveness exist...right?

God knows I need it as a MOM & all the mistakes I make 24 hours a day...Conley needs it for all the throwing, hitting, pinching, + biting...& Cam needs it for all the times he starts throwing a fit over not getting the iPhone.  HA!๐Ÿ˜‚
The seasons of fall before my babies were born,  all seem to run together & feel the same. These days, each season of fall brings BIG changes...making the fun & excitement bittersweet.  They are not, nor will ever be the same again, with each year that passes, but each one so very special & so very different.  All to be remembered for different things & milestones.
It goes for any holiday, really!  But given the ber' months are full of the most special...
 it's definitely now that I always find myself reflecting & gathering all the things I never want to forget.

Truth is, I've wrote down so many things they've said or done over the past year, that I couldn't possibly share it all or we'd be here all day.  We can't remember everything we'd love to remember, but we can make memories to last a lifetime.

What are your favorite memories with your babies?  What are their snapshots like this fall?
All the sentimental feels today, guys.
Happy Monday, sweet friends.

As promised, before I sign off, I want to share our last fall giveaway winner!
Congratulations, Savannah!!  
How are winners chosen you may wonder?  Once all the entries are in, Rafflecopter randomly selects a winner from all the entries!  It's as simple as that!
I know you will so enjoy all the sweet goodies coming your way, Savannah!  
Thank you to all who participated & for supporting these small shops!
Tuesday, October 3, 2017

October Countdown + Favorite Small Business Giveaway

 Happy 1st Week of October, friends!
I know that in the violent events our world has experienced over the past couple of years, we need a ray of sunshine here & there to sidetrack us from all the sadness in the media, especially this week.  Despite all that has went on, we have to look above & know that it is all in His hands.  My heart goes out to all the families who have lost loved ones in the most recent Las Vegas tragedy & to the people who are so troubled that they would commit such an horrific act of hatred such as this.

  October.  One of my favorite months of the year.  I already feel more cozy & snug as the leaves change their colors & the weather cools down (somedays).  In honor of this month, I put together two things...
1.  A printable "Fun in October Countdown."
2.  My last small business Fall giveaway! 
What is a "Fun in October Countdown?" you might ask.  Well, let me share more! 
I looked up some of the favorite October/fall related things & put them all in a word document that you can access below.  I sent mine to Office Depot to have them print it out  on cardstock and laminate it for me so it will last for years to come. 
The boys & I are putting all the fun "to do's" in a hat & drawing one each day.  We draw two (one for each kid) & pick the one we think we'd like to do for the day.  Some are really simple like, "High Five A Scarecrow" & others may take a little more planning like "make a soup."  Some you'll want to save for special dates like, "Go Trick or Treating!"  (which is why you draw two;).  When we finish the little "to do", we put it in our October countdown calendar on the corresponding day we did it!
You can totally do your own, too!  I just thought I'd share because I would have loved to have printed one somewhere else without having to go in and look all this up & make my own document at midnight.  But NOW, we have some fun fall things to do every evening!  I know some evenings we need a little fun after school or before bed & these are just the things to inspire us & make the most of October!  I'd love to hear if you have some suggestions! 

Find the list here! ๐Ÿ˜‰
And now, Giveaway Time!
A little for the mama & a little for the baby. 

I'm hoping this sweet giveaway will add to all the fall fun at your home.  I have four sweet businesses that I love, that have donated a little something special for my readers. 

oneThis (2T-Youth XL) sweet baseball tee from the Etsy shop, Ashers Ally! 
 You may have seen Conley wearing his sweet fun little skeleton "I've got this feeling...inside my bones" shirt.  We LOVE that song...& we love Halloween.  A little from the shop owner, Ally:

"  I have always been creative so I decided why not spread the love lol, cheesy but true. I opened in 2016, did it for a few months then decided to close while we moved back to GA from Washington state, my husband is in the military & I was pregnant.  I planned on reopening after my daughter was born, which I did & stayed open for a couple months until I accepted that I had PPD & took a month off. Now I've been back open a month and feeling/doing better than ever. I named my shop after my first born Asher (I'm a total boy mom). Once I get an order I try and have it shipped out as soon as possible. I love doing this, making things for others. I love knowing that my designs are being worn all over the USA! God sure has blessed me with this ๐Ÿ˜Š "
two. A handmade stuffed squirrel (whose soft fluffy tail is to DIE for) from Mila's Zoo, check out her instagram!  It is always making me laugh-I love how she interprets animals & people into stuffed things to love.  This sweet squirrel is oh so sweet & cuddly, the perfect animal for your baby to love this fall.  Her creation process takes 4-5 weeks after ordered, so this is a great find as the sweet little buddy is ready to be shipped as soon as the winner is announced next week!
three. where my coffee lovers at?  This campfire mug by the Savi Design will most likely become your most favorite mug to sip coffee out of this fall.  This "hello pumpkin" mug is the perfect shade of orange & white with black specs to evoke a sense of Fall AND Halloween. 
A little from Hillary, the shop owner:

 "The Savi Design" mainly started out as a hobby. When I was little I did calligraphy and just got away from it. But then, in 2015, I got engaged and decides to pick up calligraphy and lettering again so I could DIY some place cards, mirrors, etc in my own wedding. Then I did some stuff for family and friends and decided etsy would be a fun place to share my lettering and signs with others! "
four. This fun 6 feet Orange + Black Halloween felt ball garland by The Fickled Felt Tree, my favorite little shop to buy festive garland from! 

Chance are, if you have ever read one of my holiday home posts, you've seen Brittany Peterson's work!  I think I string them everywhere & they bring such fun colors in our holiday decorations for every season!

Here's a little about Brittany:

When The Fickle Felt Tree was started in 2012 felt ball garlands were just starting in other countries and TFFT shop was the pioneer shop in the U. S. A. TFFT shop has been featured in MARTHA STEWART WEDDING MAGAZINE, DISNEY BABY BLOG and many other wonderful blogs. All orders are shipped out within three business days. There are many color combos available in the shop but if you'd like something different than what you see, Brittany, the owner is more than happy to customize any garland for you. She loves seeing pictures of her garlands and felt flowers from her customers! The garlands are so versatile that people use them in so may different ways. Her products are well made and can be used year after year. Brittany has been married for almost thirteen years and is a busy mother of four young children from Las Vegas.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Good luck, sweet friends!
I'll be announcing the winner next Monday!
As soon as the winner is announced, I'll be emailing you & getting your information for these sweet shops.
Give these girls a follow on Etsy for extra entries:)