Sugar Rush

We had a perfectly festive weekend that included Santa sightings and so many cookies!

On Friday night my sister watched the boys so Dennis  and I could go to an ugly sweater party. We ate really delicious food, drank Moscow mules that were a little too delicious and had a really great time with our friends.

We went to the Coyote basketball game on Saturday to visit Santa.  Duke is obsessed with 'boball' and 'arlie'- basketball and Charlie the mascot- so we have been loving the games and couldn't pass up our 3rd Santa visit this month.  Got to make sure we made the nice list! Duke said he was going to give Santa a high five but he did not want to sit on his lap.  When we got up to the concourse, Santa AND Mrs. Claus were prepped with candy canes and ready for pictures.  Duke managed to give Santa a high five and stood near him for a quick photo op.  Theo was a champion and sat on Santa's lap while making eyes at his lady friend. Always a charmer. 

A week or so ago I saw a video on Facebook with adorable Christmas cookie ideas and within an hour my sister texted my mom and I and asked if we wanted to have a cookie baking party over the weekend.  Yessss! She loaded up on ingredients at the store and we all brought extra mixing bowls and baking sheets over to my mom's house around lunch on Sunday.  I had high hopes that my baking skills would be on point, which is ridiculous because I'm probably the worst cookie baker on the planet.  We tried out some fun and festive ideas that were a bit of a flop but ended up with dozens of beautifully decorated sugar cookies! By beautiful, I mean most of them had candy eyes, loads of sprinkles, and a spotty frosting job.  But we had fun and that's what counts, right?! :) 

My mom bought a giant Rice Krispie treat sheet with the hopes that the kids would all help decorate it.  After a few globs of frosting were added, both Duke and Ashlan decided to start eating their pieces and to their dismay we had to pry the giant marshmallow treats out of their hands after awhile.

The big kids decorated ginger bread houses and my dad even stepped into to help dip caramel covered pretzels in chocolate and taste test our creations.  All the while, Dennis was out of town Christmas shopping and Theo was either napping or rolling around on the floor.  The day was awesome and we left with a  Tupperware full of treats for each of our houses plus plenty to save for all of our Christmas festivities next weekend.

The weather has been unseasonably warm this week but we are due for a brutal cold front at the end of the week.  Think we'll have a white Christmas?!  I can't wait to be off work for a few days and see my sister, brother in law and niece from Colorado.  I have a few more last minute gifts arriving in the mail this week and we'll be ready!

Happy Tuesday friends! I hope you're all enjoying this holiday season and eating more than your fair share of cookies.


Christmas Vibes

Today was one of those off days where nothing seemed to go exactly as I'd planned.  Duke was feeling sick with a cold so he was needing loads of extra attention and snuggles.  Theo is just starting to enter the world of separation anxiety and cries the saddest tears whenever I leave the room.  Each time I cleaned one room, I'd enter another to find it littered with toys, dishes, or socks.  Yes, socks.  Why are they're so many socks in my house?! Anyway, I want to focus on the fun, festive activities we've done this month, and cap this day off with some Ben & Jerry's before climbing into bed.  In no particular order, here's a glimpse into how we've been enjoying this season!
One thing that put me in an excellent mood this morning, was wrapping up some of the presents we've purchased so far and stacking them up under the tree.  So far...*knock on wood* Duke hasn't paid much attention to them.  It's been 6 hours, so I'm considering this a small victory. 
I've been buying way too many pairs of Christmas outfits and PJ's to celebrate my favorite season and justifying it because the boys will wear them as long as they fit AND anything I buy for Duke, Theo will get to use when he gets bigger.  Regardless, there just isn't anything cuter than babes in Christmas gear!

I want a pillow with this pattern...I love it! So simple, so perfectly festive. 

I have been dying over the 'On this Day' Facebook reminders lately.  This will be Duke's 3rd Christmas and I love seeing how much he's grown and changed over these 2 short years! 

We've had 2 Santa visits so far this month.  Duke was not a fan of either one.  Theo didn't really care either way, but thoroughly enjoyed attempting to pull Santa's beard off when he wasn't paying attention.  My niece had a dance performance at the W. H. Over museum in town and they setup local vendors all throughout the museum for people to shop, plus Santa ready for pictures.  He gave it a good shot and tried to encourage Duke with crayons and cars but he was not falling for it.  The other visit was at our local bank and Santa managed to get a high five from Duke...I credit a plate full of Oreo's for this success.  

The weather has been pretty mild so far this year, so we took advantage of a particular nice afternoon last weekend to get our lights up outside and decorate our tree.  I absolutely love seeing our lights on when I drive to pick the boys up after work.  I need to remember to snap some pictures of other decor we have around the house...our collection is growing and I love being able to incorporate little touches of holiday cheer throughout the house.  

We made an attempt at a family picture once our tree was completely decorated and completely failed.  Duke was being absolutely adorable and kept trying to snap his fingers and get Theo to look at the camera.  He copies pretty much every thing we do and has clearly taken notice of our tactics to get Theo to look and smile.  I'm all about beautifully smiling faces in a good family picture, but this one truly captures our crazy lives right now.  And I love it. 
My mom, sister and I went downtown last Thursday for an annual Sip and Shop event a lot of our local stores participate in.  We stopped into half a dozen stores to snack on treats, sip on wine, and buy gifts for family, friends, and maybe ourselves :)  It was an awesome evening and another example {of so many!} that make me so happy we live here.  This week I have a white elephant Christmas book club party with friends and a holiday mix and mingle.  'Tis the season!  I hope you're all enjoying this holiday season and soaking up quality time with the people you love the most. 

Have an awesome week!


Movin' and Shakin'

Theo is officially on the move. He turned 7 months on 10/28 and has discovered the wonders of rolling his way all over the house.  He pivots around and makes his way into the weirdest nooks and crannies but it's adorable to watch him explore the world a little bit.

He has 2 tiny teeth now and loves to chomp on people's fingers when they aren't paying attention.  Sneaky devil.  He's working on sitting up without support but loves to prop in the high chair or bumpo seat for meals.  He makes hilarious faces when eating his mushed up baby food and Dennis thinks I'm practically torturing him by making him eat his veggies.

We had a busy week this week and I am loving all the things going on around town this season.  On Thursday night I went to a ladies night out with my mom and checked out some vendors while tasting wine and snacks.  Afterwards, I had some friends over for another ladies night since we had work off on Friday and I stayed up way too late snacking on yummy dips {including a dip for apples that had cream cheese, caramel, and heath bar pieces. to. die. for}. I am so thankful to have found an amazing tribe of women that I can be completely open and honest with and share a few too many glasses of wine with when I need to wind down.
I had the day off on Friday and daycare was closed.  I originally hoped to do some potty training with Duke but he decided he was no longer interested in underwear (he had gone on the potty a few times the week before) and we just hung out and played instead.  Friday night we took the boys to the USD volleyball game against Denver.  They unfortunately lost in game 5 but we had fun watching and hanging out with my sister's family and my parents.
When you get to pick out your own clothes :)


Underwear has never been so cute!
This morning my dad let me know they were planning on moving cows from one pasture to another which means they all walk in a big ole parade down University Road.  He thought Duke would get a kick out of it because he's beyond obsessed with cows so we loaded up and drove out to watch them.  It took longer than they expected but that only peaked his excitement and he was thrilled with I let him sit up in the front seat with the window down so he could soak up all the action.  It is so much fun to see his love of the farm and being outside with the animals so we'll continue to give him every opportunity to be with his spirit animals ;)

I snuck out for a little downtown shopping and errands after Dennis got home this afternoon and snagged these super cute fall decor items on major sale at the Iron Rooster.  I am trying to buy a lot of my Christmas gifts locally this year so I figured I'd start with buying stuff for myself. :) Now, I'm watching the Roomba clean my floors while the boys nap and doing 47 loads of laundry before we head off to the USD Basketball game tonight!  Happy Weekend Friends!


Duke is 2!

At 10:31 a.m. on October 24, 2015, my sweet baby Duke was born. 8lbs 1oz, a screeching pterodactyl cry, and the sweetest round face I've ever seen.  He's been LOUD since the beginning.  He's happy, excitable, funny, and sweet. He's also super sassy, challenging, and stubborn.  He's 2.

Duke made us parents and it's clearly become my favorite thing. Raising 2 wild boys is so much more than I ever could've imagined- more fulfilling, more loving, more chaos, more noise, more snuggles. Duke reminds me to smile more, be in the moment, pay attention, and play. He provides a perspective I desperately needed.

October has been a pretty crazy month for us so I was giving myself a healthy dose of mom-guilt that I hadn't done enough for Duke's 2nd birthday party.  We didn't have any family coming in town this year so we knew it would be a small get together with my parents, my sister and brother-in-law and 2 nieces.  Dennis and I had gotten the bright idea that Duke needed a power wheels Ford F150 to match his daddy but we couldn't find one in store in town so we ended up driving to a nearby town at 9:30 on Friday night to pick up the gift.  I am so glad we got it for him because he seriously loves it and it should last him many years of crazy driving all over the yard. We just need to teach him to keep his eyes on the road!  Anyway, party day was Saturday, so while Dennis put Duke's gift together at work, I hung out with the boys and picked up the house to get ready to decorate during naptime.

We did a Mickey Mouse themed party because Duke loves "Mou" as he lovingly refers to Mickey.  I found some super cute decorations at Walmart and loaded up on streamers.  My sister and oldest niece came over to help get everything setup while Duke snoozed away.  I prepped some of the food for grilling later and my mom brought some yummy sides.  When Duke woke up a little before 4, Dennis went upstairs to distract him while we finished setting up and waited for a couple people to show up so he could make a proper entrance!

He was a little confused at first but seemed to get used to all of the attention being on him pretty quickly! We played and hung out until it was time for dinner and as soon as someone said "I think we should open presents", Duke bolted into the living room and immediately tore into a gift. It was hilarious. We literally couldn't even get up from the table fast enough and he had clearly just been waiting for the moment he could let loose on some wrapping paper.
Duke was spoiled with some awesome gifts- a heavy duty Case tractor, Maui character doll that sings, clothes, a Magnadoodle, magnets for the fridge, balls, a personalized puzzle stool, and toy animals. We took him out to the garage to reveal his truck after he opened everything inside and proceeded to crack up as he took turns driving around the yard with my nieces.  I never thought the truck would make our backyard seem so small but we've since expanded his territory to outside the fence and I think our crash rate has decreased significantly.
Yesterday, on the real BIG day, we woke Duke up with a balloon avalanche.  He was super excited and I could tell he knew the day was special. He had an awesome day at daycare and came home to drive his truck a few rounds before we had a yummy birthday dinner of pancakes, eggs and bacon....just a few of the birthday boy's favorite things! We capped off the night with brownies and singing and a couple small presents.

At 2 years old, Duke is constantly working on expanding his vocabulary and getting excited about communicating more with us. I can tell he gets frustrated if we don't understand what he's trying to say and I can see his little mind working to figure out how to pronounce a word before he repeats it.  If all else fails and we truly have no idea what he's trying to get at, he'll grab our hand and show us exactly what he wants.
Duke loves snuggling, tickles, playing and messing with his brother.  He's a pretty picky eater which I constantly struggle with and loves milk.  He has quite the crew of sweet friends at daycare and picking him up is still the very best moment of the day with him. He squeals with excitement, jumps into my arms, and promptly looks for the treat bucket.  Duke loves to dance, sing along to music or make up his own tune, and spends hours each week pretending to build things on his tool bench or cook in his kitchen.  Next on my list of things to buy is this because he absolutely loves being in the kitchen and wants to help with everything {or spray water all over the counter}. Life with Duke is so much fun and while part of me is in awe that my sweet baby is 2 already, I honestly can't wait to see what's in store for us this year!

Happy Birthday sweet baby Duke!


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