Saturday, June 21, 2014

A little getaway

I know I've said a hundred times that our family loves the beach. We spent a little weekend getaway there to celebrate the end of school, my sister's birthday and Father's Day. 
It was a happy time filled with lots of laughing and memories. Our babies used to hate the sand when they were babies but now, they love it. Rylee loves jumping waves with her daddy. Reese loves anything about the beach. 
We ate pizza and Icecream - and it was amazing! So amazing that I knew I had to burn that off quickly, so I got up early for a little beach run. 
The beaches were crowded. The sun was beaming. Breeze was steady. And, best of all, everyone was happy. 

Summer is an amazing time of year! 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

A Honor Roll - again

Our big girl, Rylee - made the A Honor Roll, again. Finishing 1st grade strong and ready for 2nd.
In fact, we think she's been ready for 2nd.
She is such a smart girl. Even when we think she isn't focused or has no clue what is going on - she surprises us with her intellectual capacity. I know we will celebrate many years of her intelligence. Today was all about making her feel loved and know how proud she makes us feel.

And then, there's Reese - who will be just as smart. But for now, loves to carry her sister's book-bag and be part of the school crowd.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Cheddar, our Hamster

Our sweet old fella, Cheddar, went to Heaven ~ Friday night.

Hamsters live such short lives. The maximum life span for them is about 3 years.
We had our little guy for about a year and half but he was already about 8 months when we got him.
Pets become part of your family. No matter what kind of animal they are.
You love them, care for them, and enjoy their company.
My heart always fills with much sadness when we lose a pet.
Animals can't express how they feel so we just assume we are making them comfortable in their last few moments of life.
I held our little hammy, Cheddar, while he took his last few breaths.
I talked with Rylee about what a fun animal he was and that all pets eventually die to be in heaven.
We buried him under a tree in our front yard so that his spirit can live through the tree.
Rylee put a little stone with a heart, over his grave.
RIP Cheddar

Monday, June 9, 2014

hokey pokey...

Happy Monday folks!

We spent our weekend by the pool, at the gym, and eating icecream.
The weekends go by much too fast!
Rylee and I talked about ways to show respect to others and the
1st Commandment, "Honor your Father and Mother" in our devotions last night.
She is such a smart girl and is still learning how to be mindful of manners and respectful to all.
Reese loves to dance::  The funniest moment of the weekend was our tradition of dancing in Reese's room before bed...She's obsessed with the hokey pokey.. so we all sing it and when it gets to "you do the hokey pokey, and you turn yourself around, that's what it's all about...",
we all point at Reese and pause to let her scream "HOKEY POKEY".
She laughs hysterically everytime.
Laughter is medicine for the soul.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

meet Reese

Hi! I'm Reese but most call me Reese-y.
I'm 3.
I'm rambunctious. I'm funny. I'm optimistic and I like to be nude.
I hate waking up early.
I love everything outdoors. Bubbles are my favorite.
I think the world revolves around me most days.
I carry around a blue striped puppy, I call him, "puppy".
I love to eat. Everything. Eatings my favorite.
When I get upset, boy do I get upset. It takes a lot to calm me down.
I don't mean to be that way, I'm still learning to control and work through my emotions.
Sometimes I'm bossy. I think I get that from my Mommy.
My daddy is my favorite person. He loves to play puzzles with me.
I love riding on his back and copying his dance moves.
My sister tries to make me mad. I just try to be like her. I think she's really cool.
I especially love when we play house.
I like to do things in my own time. I feel out of control when something doesn't go my way.
I know this gets me in trouble but it's just how I am for now.
I go to preschool. I'm the youngest and the shortest in my class.
 I'm really smart and well behaved at school. I can let loose at home.
I love to paint.
Pink is my favorite color.
My best friends are all boys and most of my other friends are my sister's age.
I'm scared of flies. I'm scared of bees. I love dogs.

I'm clumsy. I trip and stumble over my own feet often.
I laugh a lot. I laugh at myself.
I like to talk in funny voices. It makes people laugh.
I'm very complimentary. I notice everything.

I'm happy.
I'm healthy.
I love people.
I really love jumping.

"Happy girls are the prettiest girls" ~ Audrey Hepburn

Saturday, June 7, 2014

meet Rylee

I'm Rylee.
My mom calls me everything but that.
I'm 7 and a half, almost.
I have a loose tooth. I wish it would fall out. I wiggle it everyday hoping to get it out. I lost my first tooth at afternoon tea with my mom one day. It was so cool.
I bite my nails. I know I shouldn't, my mom threatens to put hot sauce on them to make me stop.
It's a habit I just can't break.
I'm particular about my clothes because I care about my appearance.
I don't like shorts without pockets. They look weird. 
I'm a picky eater. I don't mean to be. I just know what I like and don't like. I love sweets. I know I shouldn't have them all the time but they are so good. Icecream is my favorite food.
Breakfast just isn't really my thing.
I like school for the most part. I'm good at it. I read well. I know math. I love to learn. Especially when my parents quiz me at home and teach me new things.
I've been bullied. There are times I've hated going to school because I know that girl will be mean. My mom taught me to be nice to everyone. My dad says you don't have to be everyone's friend.
I'm learning to be a mixture of both.
I'm not sure how I feel about playing soccer. Mom and Dad say it's good for me.
I hate all that running some days. Practice is aggravating. The games are fun.
I used to do dance. I liked it. I just get bored easily.
I like to watch Full House, Animal Planet, and documentaries. I love to learn about animals.
I think my mom is amazing. I write her love notes all the time.
I tell her how sweet and beautiful she is. My favorite thing is our girl time together.
It makes her sad when I don't get overly excited about things the way she does. But she knows I do get excited, I just express myself differently.
My dad is laid back. He's very easy going and I love when he wrestles around with me.
My sister gets on my nerves. But most days, I love her.
When she gets in trouble, she always comes to me.
She loves when I sing to her, it always puts her to sleep.
I love puppies. You wanna go to the pet store? It's my favorite place to go.
My favorite color for now is bright orange.
My best friend is probably Ellison, Ella Paige, and my cousin Taylor.
I get easily frustrated. If I can't do something, I'm quick to give up.
Until someone helps me, then I feel much better.
Anyone who knows me would say I'm a sweet girl. They say I'm polite and friendly.
I love to tell people about our animals.
I love to wear fake nails.
I love everything chocolate.
I refuse to pee in the woods.
I hate to wear closed toe shoes.
I love Junie B Jones books.
"And though she be but little, she is fierce." ~Shakespeare

Friday, June 6, 2014

acts of love

It's become quite a norm to see animals stuck in the middle of the road...
What a perfect way to teach my girls about small acts of love.
We are a family that loves animals.
I don't believe in harming any of God's creatures. So, anytime I see a little animal in danger, I try to rescue it.
I've done this since I was younger. Once, there was a stray cat that came to our house. I missed a final to take that cat to the vet. I know, I know... don't pet stray animals. Well, I saved that kitty. My mom still has him to this day. Turns out he had some sort of torticollis (except I don't think they call in that in animals) and a severe respiratory infection.
He healed and is currently living a healthy life.
I've saved bunnies. Countless turtles. Dogs. And even snakes, yes, Even snakes.
I have such an appreciation for animals. They are helpless and innocent. Much like a children.
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unwakened" - Anatole France
Teaching my girls to love and respect all creatures, great and small.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

busy life

Ever get so wrapped up in the tasks of the day that you forget to slow down and enjoy it?

I'll admit it, we do.

Our mornings and evenings always seem like such a hectic time of fast pace, nonstop, go go go!

A typical morning with kids is:
I'm up at 5am, workout. Everyone else is up at 6:30am.
Lunches packed.
Teeth brushed.
Hair fixed - neatly.
Shoes on.
Feed animals.
Load car.
Then, we're off.

A typical evening with kids is:
Home by 5:30.
Dinner at the table.
Chat about the day.
Tend to animals.
Bath time.
Story time.

That's it. Sounds simple and probably like most households. But busy.
We maintain organization within our family because let's face it, my middle name is organization.

I'm a planner. Always.

Our lives have became much more organized:: I lay out the kid's clothes for the week. We prepare meals ahead of time. We pack lunches the night before. We have a chalk board of daily tasks. We have a calendar in the kitchen of events. We squeeze in fun things in the evenings like dinners out, icecream, pool time...

It's easy to always feel rushed. Like there isn't enough time in the day. Especially when both parents work 1st shift.

We have learned that our entire household is much happier and manageable when everyone slows down and gets to do the things they enjoy.

So... Stop. Breathe. Enjoy the beauty of your everyday life. Enjoy the sounds of children's laughter. Don't get caught up in the 5,000 requests at bedtime for more water, bathroom trips, and one more song. Let it be. Live life to the fullest and soak in every momemt. For one day, those moments will only be a memory.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

take us to the beach

We're the type of family that could live at the beach, literally, on the beach, in the sand all summer. I'd eat, sleep, and lay there on the burning sand soaking in the sun forever if I could.
We took a trip last year to Top Sail Beach ~ it was heaven.
The beach gives such a relaxing vibe. It's peaceful. No where to be, nothing to do. It relieves all urgency, all worries, every care in the world is evaporated at the beach.
The sounds: the seagulls flying overhead, the breeze whistling through our hair, the ocean crashing onto the shore, the crabs scurrying across the sand, the laughter from children, the casual conversations of families, umbrellas flapping wildly against the wind, and ships floating slowly by with friendly guests.
The smells: coconut oils and sprays, sunscreens, fresh laundried towels, salty air, deliciously smelling shampoos as hair blows in the breeze and fresh everything.
The feel: crisp burning sun against our skin, soft warm sand sliding between our toes, rough seashells hitting our toes in the ocean, icey cold ocean water splashing against our skin, wind whipping across our faces and through our hair.
I hope my children grow to appreciate the peacefulness and calmness of the beach as I have. For there is nothing like making memories every summer with those you love.

I swear in another life, I must have been a mermaid. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Reese turns 1!!

Our little Reese turned 1
Her Alice in "One"derland Party has been quite popular on Pinterest.
Now onto, toddlerhood...

Mackey Pack is Back!

That was the longest break ever in blog posting, right? So the last time I posted was August of 2012... well, things have certainly changed!
Many people that know us think we should open a zoo. Our family loves animals. We have a turtle (Elizabeth), a geiko (Olivia), a ball python (Guiness), a hermit crab (Shelly), a hamster (Cheddar), 2 dogs (Dixie & Sammy), and a fish (Sebastian).
The kids have grown~  Rylee is 7 and Reese is 3!
I'm.. not going to say my age and Mike's in his mid-thirties.
There's Rylee, our first born: who is completing 1st grade and so intelligent. Rylee is our witty, serious, and giving child. She reads more than I do, loves journaling and drawing, helping in the kitchen, enjoys playing with friends, and gets excited for manicures and pedicures. She loves dresses and high heels. She's basically 7 going on 17. She is very mature and energetic. Very set in her ways and time/detail oriented. She loves animals of all kinds especially her pet hamster and geiko. Swimming would be her favorite sport; however, she plays soccer for her 3rd year now - 6 seasons.. 4 of them undefeated. She loves to make things for people and has a big heart.
Definitely a Momma's girl.

And then, there's Reese. Reese is our funny, spunky, never a dull moment child. She is in preschool. Reese loves bubbles, outdoors, dresses, dogs, and testing her parent's patience. She loves singing and making people laugh. She loves to cuddle and give hugs. She is full of energy and the girl loves food. Reese is into baby dolls, Dora and Frozen. She knows the lyrics to every Frozen song. She's a thumb sucker and a "nap anywhere" kinda girl. She's sweet and caring.
This one is her Daddy's girl.

Often, I am asked: "do your girls get along?"
Well, you would think being 4 years and 3 months apart, yes - however, it's a slightly different story here. Don't get me wrong, as with every family, there are good days and bad days. They get along for the most part but they bicker.. It's little things like "she's looking at me", "she has my tablet", "that's mine", "no it isn't, it's mine", "shes's not sharing", "why do I have to share"...
You catch my drift.
They do love playing together: baby dolls, dancing, singing, watching movies together. Reese will do about anything Rylee says because well, she wants to be just like her (for now anyway).
Regardless of the good and bad, I'll take them and I am blessed to call them both mine. 

Mike and I are going on year 8 of marriage and 11 years together. Marriage is a wonderful thing. I can't and don't ever want to imagine life without him. Has it been rocky? Duh, no marriage is perfect, unless you're the Duggar family. I'm certainly no marriage expert. I'm not even close. But I can tell you what makes ours work: respect and communication.
I once read that marriage is made up of:
* 2 people believing good wins over bad
* 2 people walking in each other's shoes
* 2 people living the love they promise

 Our new found hobbies are working out and running. We have ran some 5ks this year together and plan to do a half marathon before the end of the year.
I love journaling, eating healthy, and crafting. Mike loves playing golf, grilling, and pinterest. Ha!
 Life is pretty grand. Our family has a tons to be thankful for. We are beyond blessed.
We hope you will continue to follow our journey.