Thursday, October 27, 2016

Raising an Original #oholive

It's been a few months since I did an #oholive post so I figured it was time.  The silly stories are wracking up on my phone list so I've got to share them before I forget them.

Things Olive says:

patter-in = pattern
strustrated = frustrated
sammy-itch = sandwich
lie-berry = library
balla-ka-rina = ballerina
a-dor-dable = adorable
Reese Pups = Reese Puffs
Puppy Clouds = puffy clouds

She's currently loving Cinderella, mermaids, Sheriff Callie, Daniel Tiger, books, art projects, singing, play-doh, going on walks, helping in the kitchen, snuggles and her baby brother.  She is starting to draw people with circle bodies, arms and legs.

She's recognizing logos and signs for things around town - Target, Jimmy Johns, Wal-Mart, Meijer, Sams, Square Donuts and Panda Express.

She loves to tell stories.  The longer the better and facts are optional.

She has a favorite floral sun dress and thinks she should be able to wear it everyday.

Favorite foods: cucumbers, apples, carrots, noodles, pretzels, goldfish, dry cereal, soft serve ice cream, sprinkles, donuts, bread, meat, berries, granola bars, fruit snacks and pizza.

Dislikes: getting dressed, wearing layers, 

Funny Stories:
We went to get our flu shots last week and I went first.  She reached out said, "Here I'll hold your hand, Mama.  So you don't be scared."  Then she claimed she did not need one of those "blue shots".  When it was her turn she was pretty brave.  Cried for just a few seconds and then ripped off the bandaid the nurse put on.  She said, "I don't need this thing!" and tossed it on the floor.

She helps me decorate the house for the holidays and then I find her rearranging things on her own.  She grabbed all of her hair clips, attached them to a fake flower arrangement and insisted I come look at her "decoratin". 

If she falls or makes a mess she yells NEVERMIND and doesn't want us to look her way.

She goes around singing random songs and her current favorite is from Sheriff Callie: "Pesky little critter we thought you was cute.  Now you're just a pain in our boots!"  haha

We went to the zoo and the Tiger was very curious about us.  He kept walking right up to the glass and Olive said, "He looked right into my EYEBALLS!"

Olive has started asking us questions - How did you sleep?  How was work today? How was your food?

We were grocery shopping one evening and Olive spotted a man with a bandana and a big hoop earring walking our way.  She said, "That man is a PIRATE!" at the top of her lungs.  We just kind of laughed it off and kept going.  I think he was probably going for more of a biker look than a pirate look.

She's learning how to do jobs around the house.  We tidy up her bedroom every night before bed and she's memorized which things go in which drawers.  She refills water bottles to the fridge when we are running low.  She's started checking this all on her own.  She refills the cat food bowl with one scoop a day.  If I fold the laundry she can take it to her room and put it where it belongs.

We were having a play date with friends and I gave her a heads up that we were leaving in 5 minutes so it wouldn't be a shock when it was time to go.  She shouted, "I AM NEVER LEAVING!!" in response.  She's also started referring to her friends as her best friends.

We went to an anniversary party and they had Hershey kisses on every table.  Olive went from table to table sampling chocolates and walked out with a handful for the road.

She feels all the feelings and wants to talk about them.  "That really hurt my feelings.  I miss them so much!  I don't like it when..., I feel shy, That makes me so sad, etc."

She's completely potty trained and has been for months.  She now thinks that everyone gets a scooter and helmet when they get potty trained since that was her reward.

She lassos, rides her horses and talks like a cowgirl often thanks to Sheriff Callie.  I caught her lassoing our lamps and asked her why she was doing that.  She said, "Mama, How am I going to get better at lassoing if I don't practice??"  Good point.

We walked into the library and she was so excited to see her favorite teacher leading story time.  She yelled out "Mr. T!!!!"  It made his day to see her so excited and then she hid behind me and wouldn't say hello to him.

My favorite Olive pictures from the last few months:

Three is such a sweet age!!

I was excited to read Raising an Original by Julie Lyles Carr after reading that she is a psychologist and she has eight children of her own.  That's a lot of real life experience to draw from and her background in women's ministries was evident in her Biblical take on life.  I really enjoyed the book and learned so much about valuing the God given talents your child is born with.  Carr helps you to reevaluate your schedule, your time commitments, your definition of normal and your extracurriculars to best benefit your family.  I loved her focus of spending time WITH your children, not causing them to stress because you've packed their days full of activities and to really listen to what activities your child is interested in doing.  There is a personality assessment included to help you identify the different personalities of everyone in your family.  She gives tons of practical advice, has very relatable parenting stories and it was a really enjoyable read.  I was inspired to really acknowledge the personality differences in my children and to help them thrive in the real world.  This would be a great book to read with your spouse, your book club or another friend because there are so many different things to discuss. 
*This book was gifted to me from BookLook bloggers in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Timeless Halloween Crafts

I love to do holiday themed crafts with my kids.  I try to plan a few activities/craft projects to do each month and we have a great time doing them together.  The majority of our art time during the days is unplanned.  I just put out the supplies and let my toddler do what she wants.  She paints (watercolor and washable), colors with markers, crayons, colored pencils, plays with play-doh, stamps or does something fun with stickers.  We have rules in place so that she doesn't make a giant mess each time and she really enjoys doing art.

2016 Halloween Art Projects:

// 1 //
Foot Print Pumpkin Patch
I stamped one kid at a time, let all the orange paint dry and then added the stems & polka dots.  I couldn't believe how big Olive's footprint was compared to Fletcher's!  Wasn't I just stamping her baby foot on things??   I thought about doing hand print pumpkins, but getting a baby to open up their hand to stamp sounded like a terrible idea. 

// 2 //
Hand Print Witch on Halloween Night
I let Olive paint the canvas background by herself while I was working with her brother.  She got to use one color at a time, could request any Halloween color and she had a variety of tools to paint with (dotters, various sized brushes and her fingers).  We let the background dry overnight and then came back the next day to do the witch.

Her background turned out so cute!  It's no surprise that she picked purple as her main color.  I stamped her hand and then we worked together to add the features of the witch on day 2.  I let her pick the colors for the witch and then she decided the whole thing needed some more yellow polka-dots when we got the witch done.  She was SO PROUD of her Halloween art.  She ran right to get it when Kevin got home from work so she could showcase her art to him.  It's now a treasured piece of our Halloween decor - I dated the back of both of them.

 // 3 //
We Love BOO! Halloween cards

I stamped Fletcher's foot on each card and tried to keep him from eating all the paint supplies around us.  He was so busy knocking things over and was so excited to see all of the new supplies out.  He giggled through the foot painting and was pretty pleased with the process.  Once he was done getting stamped, I gave him Cheerios and then Olive got busy making finger print pumpkins on each card.

I told her to add pumpkins to each card and gave her a plate with orange paint on it.  I had to show her how to press her whole finger print on the card instead of just dipping the finger tip.  She caught on quickly and I love that each card is different.  We let the pumpkins dry and then I went back to add stems on each one, add faces to the ghosts and write we love BOO!

We made foot print cards for several holidays when Olive was a baby so I was excited to carry on this tradition with Fletcher.  These went out to family and friends earlier this week :)

 I also asked Olive to write a message on each envelope.  I had already addressed and stamped them so I was hoping she'd have fun adding a message to the back.  She would narrate... "Dear ________ Happy Halloween" as she scribbled her note on each one.

We mailed a card to one of her best little buddies.  I told her it was for him and she promptly drew a heart and said, "It's because he's my very best friend!"  We've been practicing shapes so it was so sweet for her to add the heart unprompted.

 Also worth noting... Olive enjoyed painting the paint plate just as much as she enjoyed doing the art project.  She loved working with me and loved being creative.  So we had the best of both worlds - a structured project with an end result and fun free time for her to paint whatever she wanted with no direction from me.

Supplies Needed:
styrofoam plate
variety of brushes and dotters
crayola washable paint
2 blank canvas
blank notecards and envelopes
wet wipes or paper towels

 I love making art with my kids!!

Have you saved any hand print art from your kids over the years??

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Pumpkins, Hayrides & a Dose of Reality

We had a pretty nice Fall weekend at our house.  Sure the baby was teething and no one slept great, BUT we did get to do lots of fun things.  We crossed so many things off our Fall Family Fun to do list.  I'm going to focus on the positives, throw in a few doses of reality and show you all the family fun we had with pumpkins, s'mores, hayrides and hot dates :)  Have you gotten your pumpkins yet??

 The leaves are falling and Olive loves to play in them.  She was excited to wear her O pumpkin shirt and head to the pumpkin place.  Reality: she refused to wear pants and a coat and shivered her way through the pumpkin picking.

 It was so cute to see these two deliberating over which pumpkin was best and then picking out one for her and one for Fletcher.  Real life: Kevin wished he would have picked out a pumpkin for himself but didn't have enough hands to carry them all.  We also forgo the actual pumpkin patch because our kids are too little to care.  They love going to this local nursery and picking pumpkins out of the pumpkin dome.


Last year we announced our pregnancy with Fletcher by saying we were adding another pumpkin to the patch.  This year we have a darling, chunky little pumpkin hanging out at the patch.
Reality: He loved all the pumpkins and would have licked them all if we let him.

 Sweet sibling moment.
Reality: It's nearly impossible to get two little kids looking and smiling in the same direction.

Olive's favorite part of picking out pumpkins every year is finding a bunch of tiny ones to bring home with us.  Here's she's telling me she has a really great idea!  Let's make a pattern with our pumpkins!  Sounds good and we ended up going home with a bag of mini pumpkins.

 See what I mean about pumpkin licking :)

On Saturday we went to our country club's Halloween party.  It's our second year to go and we had a great time.  It was even better than last year.
The bounce house was a huge hit.  
Reality: Olive loved it so much Kevin almost had to climb in to pull her out.  Since she loved bouncing so much we did get to visit with some other families.  We're trying hard to make friends so this was a good way for us to visit while all of our kids bounced.

Olive roasted her first marshmallow.
Reality: She promptly decided she didn't like black marshmallows, gave it to me and then grabbed a handful of mini marshmallows and chocolate to snack on instead.  Then she knocked over my cup of hot chocolate so we cleaned it up and left the area.

Kevin made me a delicious s'more.

Time for a hayride!!

We were excited about the hayride through the golf course.  We looked around for animals because we usually see turkeys or deer.  I just knew Olive and Fletcher would love it.
Reality: Olive did love it and throwing hay off the side of the hayride was her favorite part.  Fletcher was undecided about the whole thing.  He couldn't get comfy and fussed through about half the ride.  He kept trying to pull hair and eat hay.  Also, toddlers hate selfies and babies love them.

Date night!!
Reality: Olive was bouncing the night away after we ate dinner, I walked Fletcher around in his stroller until he fell asleep and then we had a few quiet moments to ourselves.  That counts for a parent date night - right!?!?  We'll take what we can get :)

Can you reality to any of our parenting realities!?!?

It's time to link up with my favorite ladies this week for 
Tuesday Talk and All Things Pumpkin Party!

Be sure to join us with your favorite posts of the week :)

Polka-Dotty Place