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Monday, May 16, 2022

Hello Monday

Why, hello there, Monday!

Somehow it was just Friday.  I know lots of you Mamas can relate to the chaos that is May - like, my brain is on overtime.  We have 13 days of school left here in Michigan, but once Memorial Day weekend rolls around, our commitments quickly dissolve into only a few other little events and...

I. Can't. Wait.

But first, how about a little of what's going on over here...

I'm linking up with Holly and Sarah for Hello Monday!  Thanks for hosting, ladies!

First up, I started potty training Jane on Monday of last week.  Actually, I had attempted to potty train her last fall, but she just wasn't ready, so we completely stopped and I'm thankful we did.

I'm happy to report that girly girl has been using the potty consistently and even goes alone.  We're still working on the "number two" part of the gig, but I've basically promised her the toy section of Walmart, so I'm assuming when the time comes, she'll give it her best!  Hahaha!

Back to being done with the school year - Henry, our 11 year old, who absolutely looooves school mentioned to me that he was done with school for the year - so that's saying something!

Seriously, are you guys exhausted?!  I'm exhausted...but then again, I think I've been exhausted since March of 2020...

Anywho, I'm all over the place!  Haha!

We had Henry's band concert on Thursday evening and everyone did so well.  It was quite a difference from their fall concert, but even back in the fall we were quite impressed by how much they had already learned.

Henry had a speaking part, too.  He rocked it!  We were so proud of his inflection and how animated he was while speaking.

I tooootally forgot to take a picture of Henry while at school.  Mostly due to me occupying a certain three year old *ahem - cough cough - Jane* for an hour.  She actually did great for being so little, but I did end up apologizing to some people after the concert because I saw that she kept accidentally bumping into people.  Oh, dear.  I always remind myself, though, that all of these little moments of taking her out and doing things, especially after being stuck inside for so long, is really, REALLY good for...apologies and all.


So, since I never got a picture of Henry while at the concert, we took a selfie in the car while at Dairy Queen getting celebration ice cream.

I snuggled Nubs.

Nothing more to say here, except that he loves me unconditionally and even though I'm not a cat person, this cat will always have my heart.

Eliza before school on Friday.

Girlfriend was all decked out in her Gryffindor gear (and the cutest hat from her Aunt Kimmy) and I thought she looked so stinking cute...and 8.  I love that she's still 8.

Later on Friday morning Jon and I took Jane to our local indoor pool.

As I was scrolling through old blog posts the other day, I realized how we haven't been getting Jane in the water as much as I had hopped and living on the lake, that's not good.

It also occurred to me that Eliza was swimming without a life jacket a little here and there when she was just three.  Seeing those old blog posts kind of kicked our booties into gear with Jane.

Look at her in her itty bitty teeny weeny yellow/white polka-dot bikini - and look - no swim diaper!

On Saturday morning, Henry's soccer team took part in an In-House-Tournament!  Games were at 9:00, 12:00 and 3:00.  The more they won, the more they played.

Blue team (Henry's team) won the 9:00 a.m. game AND Henry scored two goals!!!!!!!!!!  We were crazy excited for him!!!!

  It was pretty hot and humid.  Michigan sure is funny!  Just two weeks ago we were freezing our booties off.  

We went back home, I sorted through some laundry, everyone ate lunch and we loaded back in the car for another game. We took umbrellas, too.  Actually, we took a patio umbrella!  BAHAHA!  It was so hot, you guys!  Our Northern bodies need more time to acclimate.  

Back to the games...

We all sort of figured blue team would lose the noon next game.  Our team would be playing silver team, and well, they were just a different beast of a team.  The team consumed of older and faster kids and more kids to rotate in and out of the game.

Of course, we still told Henry to give it his all, but eventually blue team lost.

It was a fantastic season and we were so proud of how much Henry learned!  If I had to venture a guess, I'd say that blue team ended up placing second, but there was never any official announcement.

Nevertheless, this boy did great!

On Sunday, we had Mommy and Me photos taken.  This was something new for us.  I didn't even hesitate to sign up once the photo opportunity popped up over on Facebook.  I can't wait to see our photos!

We quickly came home and then I took the girls to a Royal Ball!  All proceeds benefited our local Children's Museum.  I've taken Eliza to this Royal Ball before, but obviously with the craziness of the world, the event has been postponed the last couple of years.

We almost didn't go, but oh my gosh, I'm so happy we did!  The girls loved it.  It reminded me that Eliza is still little and that Jane found magic in every Princess meet and greet.

The girls were able to get autographs and pictures with every Prince and Princess.  

It was so nice for the three of us to bond, too.  Love them.  :)

Eliza was ecstatic upon seeing Rey!

More Princesses.  I love that the girls posed exactly the same in almost every picture.  Eliza stood with her arms straight down and Jane tilted her head to the side - so funny!

A little kiss after some cupcakes and pink lemonade...

Be still my heart.

Meanwhile, Jon took this stud muffin out on the first boat ride of the season.

Eliza was bummed that they had already been out, but she quickly changed into her suit and they were out testing our new kayaks and swim deck within minutes of arriving back home...

I still had enough time to put Jane down for a quick nap and then I just sat down on the back deck and relaxed for a bit, which felt so nice!

The rest of our evening was spent making dinner, cleaning up and watching a thunderstorm roll in.

It was a busy and productive week/weekend!

Today starts another busy week!  Let's gooooo!!!

Thanks, forever and always, for stopping by today!

Marie :)

Friday, May 13, 2022

Friday Favorites

Welp!  That was the longest shortest week ever!

Dear May,

You're nuts!


One exhausted Mama

Okay, so I'm here to share some of my Friday Favorites!  Let's get to it before I have to go to the next recital/rehearsal/practice/concert/field trip/appointment!  Ha!



This dress arrived just in time for our Mommy & Me photo session on Sunday!  I

the simplicity of it and I can't wait to get the kids' outfits together for said photos.  The pictures will be taking place at a little garden, so lots of light and airy clothes are what I'm going for.  I seriously can't wait.  Now, not to smile like Chandler Bing and we should be golden!  Bahahaha!  ;)


I also want to share with you a few of our favorite items for summer that we've been looooooving.......

Grandma Terri and Grandpa George recently gifted Henry and Eliza with this PickleBall net/paddles/ball kit (it was a joint gift since both kids' birthdays are in May)!  You guys - this is so much fun and so easy to set up!  If you're looking for an outdoor activity for your kids this summer, I'm telling you, this is a winner!  The kids played for hours on Sunday - Big Win!

Also, don't mind Jon cleaning up around the tree - haha - oops!  ;)  Sorry, Jon!


We also have this Badminton Set for slow summer days.  The neighbor boys love to come over and play, too!


Okay, last one, I promise!

We played this game up in Glen Arbor, Michigan last summer and the kids loved it so much that I decided to get one, too.  I have no idea where I'm going to put it, but anything to help out with that summer boredom!  Have you ever played this?  It's addicting!

Tiki Toss Ring Toss Game



Jon and I have just about finished up with our landscaping project!  If feels soooo dang good to be done with the hardest part of it all - moving of the dirt and placement of the river rock.

Now we get to water the plants daily and enjoy the fruits of our labor...



Eliza stays after school every Tuesday and Thursday for the Girls on the Run program and this past Tuesday, I was able to join her.  I loved being able to see my girly after school AND I was able to work it out with Jon so that I was able to go sans extra offspring.  Eliza and I had a great time together and we ran the entire 5k.  I'm so proud of this girl!

The next day I went for a run with Jane.  I had given her a washable marker so that she could write and draw while I ran...don't ask me why I gave her a marker instead of a crayon...I'll never know.


She was "barking," yes, "barking" and I looked down and over to see this...

You guys!!!!  She had given herself a nose and was pretending to be a "puppy gog (dog)!"  L to the O to the L!  Of course we had a million errands to run afterward and no amount of wipes was going to take off the red marker.  I laughed and laughed and laughed some more!

Never a dull moment, my friends!



Hahaha!  They should add, while attempting to pass back snacks...

Who else is loving this trial?!

Let's Gooooooo!!!  Haha!  I'm here for it!

What a crazy and fast week!  How are you guys all holding up?  Are you ready for summer?!

Thanks, as always, for stopping by!

Marie :)

I'm joining in on the Friday fun with Andrea at Momfessionals and Erika over at A Little Bit of Everything.

*This post contains affiliate links  and I may earn a commission based on purchases.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

The Easiest Patriotic Fruit Cup

Thursdays are quickly becoming a recipe day for me!

Given that Memorial Day is right around the corner aaaaand July 4th, yes - I said what I said, isn't too far behind, I thought I'd share this incredibly simple treat!

Seriously, you guys - this is THE easiest thing EVER!

What you'll need:



Cool Whip

Graham Crackers

That's it.

I had the kids break up the graham crackers in a Ziplock bag by using a rolling pin and then we assembled this fun little treat together.

I promise you, the kids will love it and it takes two minutes to throw together, as did this blog post! ;)

Enjoy, my friends!

Thanks for stopping by for this quick and easy recipe!

See you tomorrow!

Marie :)

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Our Mostly Finished Landscaping

I'm bbbaaaaaaAAAAaaack today to show off our mostly finished landscaping project!

Landscaping our back yard and front yard with river rock

Check out my latest landscaping project blog posts here and here.

So today is mostly just a photo drop of "before," the plans and the "afters" since I've blogged about most of all of this previously.

Jon and I have been working hard on this landscaping project for about a month now and boy, we sure are tired, more like completely exhausted.  We definitely aren't in our 20s anymore, BUT, we sure are proud of how much we were able to accomplish and how it all came together.  We promised not to rush any of this and to take our time and do it right and it seemed to have paid off.

I seriously can't wait to watch these plants grow over the years!!!

So, here's the south facing side of our home.  Jon worked hard on digging out dirt and placing the liner.  I was careful to make sure that all the plants we brought in would work well in full sun while on this side of the house.  I also placed lining and shoveled most of the river rock.

We love this new space so much.

The side of our home...




The north corner/side of our house.

We attempted landscaping here last year and while it wasn't bad, it just wasn't working.  The lining was too thin, the grass was a mess and given that we just purchased a generator for our home (tons of power outages in our little town and we were over it), we wanted to landscape around it so that it wouldn't get destroyed by lawn mowing equipment.




Lastly, we knew we wanted to put rocks all around our deck.  This area gets beat by the sun and we store many lake supplies/toys under the deck, which meant that rocks just made the most sense.  We also removed some plants; hostas and lilies, as they were just getting trampled on.  We still plan to add a few stepping stones and some more plants - I'm thinking a phlox or two.  Once the grasses grow, you can't see under the deck anymore either, which always looks better.

By June this will be filled in and I can't wait to see it all work with the stones!

I never made plans for this area.  Mostly because I just didn't know what to do in such a weird little space that gets foot traffic, but it's also meant for storage and it's oddly angled everywhere.

So we've been taking our time with it...

We extended the landscaping lining and brought it out, removed and repositioned plants and grasses, Jon dug out loads and loads of dirt and we removed all the mulch.



It's still a bit of a work in progress, but believe me when I say, the hard part is over.  Now it's just like decorating a space - a stone here, a plant there, another rock over there - we're so happy with it!

Come on grasses - grow, grow, grooooow!

This post wouldn't be complete without a few other random landscaping pictures.

We're just so dang proud of all of our hard labor...

There you have it!

Phew...now to go sit down! ;)

Thanks for stopping by!

Marie :)

Hello Monday

Why, hello there, Monday! Somehow it was just Friday.  I know lots of you Mamas can relate to the chaos that is May - like, my brain is on o...