Happy birthday, Kelsey Jean!




She’s seven! Seven! Seven! I say this every year, but wow … time flies! I told her the story of the day she was born and watched as her face lit up. I have a feeling I’ll be telling her the fun details from that day over and over again. I hope those are memories she can carry with her too. The part she loved best is when I told her her daddy stole her first kiss. Which is true! He scooped her up and gave her a huge smooch before I could. Those two have such a special bond and it’s been there since the moment she was born.

I took her to the bookstore yesterday and we walked around looking at books upon books. I always tell her if she was a Disney Princess that she would be Belle from Beauty and the Best because she loves to read. At the bookstore, I taught her all about Fiction, Mystery, Romance and all the different categories. We flipped through tons of books and ended up picking out a few favorites to take home. She’s really into chapter books so we got a few of those too. Hey, can we start a petition for more bookstores in America, please! It was way more fun that browsing Amazon.

As we were leaving, I asked her if she wanted to get her ears pierced. She was super shy and nervous about it but I could tell it was something that she really wanted to do. So, I offered to take a lap around the mall with her while she thought about it. We went to the pet store, got a soft pretzel, and then we were ready. She took it like a champ! The girl didn’t even flinch. She told me not to, but I snuck in a video of the entire thing anyway.

Today was indicative of just how Kelsey is. Incredibly strong. Brave. Confident. Beautiful. Smart. I couldn’t be more proud to call her my daughter. I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for this girl. She’s going to do great things.

Kelsey turns four years old!

We celebrated with a huge party yesterday but today it’s official: Kelsey Jean is four years old! Some of her favorite things:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Legos (she’s amazing at building!)
  • Little Mermaid
  • Playing dress up
  • Hanging out with her brother
  • Showers over baths
  • Chicken nuggets and mac n’ cheese
  • Wearing her hair down (would prefer it unbrushed)
  • Best friends: Colin and Raegan
  • Dance class
  • Lemon loaf and chocolate milk at Starbucks
  • Pink and purple
  • Books – Pig Will, Pig Won’t, Frozen, Little Mermaid
  • Her scooter
  • Playing with dad at the park
  • The zoo
  • Painting her nails with mom

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Watch her grow. Check out her 3rd birthday, 2nd birthday and 1st birthday.

Happy (early) Birthday, Colton!

Colton turns one on Tuesday, December 3. But we celebrated a little early today. This way our family who was in town for Thanksgiving could be there to witness his first bite – eh, finger smash – of cake.

He’s getting so big! He’s so physical (loves to climb, crawl, walk (almost) and wrestle). We have had many “wrestle mania” nights in our living room. This boy has brought us such joy and truly is a blessing from up above. We love you, buddy! Forever and always.

First birthday cupcake

first birthday boy mom blogfirst birthday mom blogfirst birthday boy mom blogfirst birthday mom blog first birthday mom blog first birthday mom blog first birthday mom blogcolton birthdayfirst birthday boy mom blogfirst birthday boy mom blogBirthday success!!!! Blue hair, blue face, blue fingers, blue belly.

The Friendship Hat: Kid Parties We Love

My dear friend, Beth’s daughter turned four! We celebrated at her Hawaiian-inspired birthday party, complete with leis, hula skirts, squirt guns, a kids “car wash”, piñata (that used to have a head) and a lot of friendly faces. Happy birthday little Baylor. Just yesterday I feel like you were turning two.

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kid parties.

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Headless hula piñata.

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The kid “car wash”



Ryan holding Colton in one hand. Gear in the other.

Teething means you get to chew on water bottles..
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PW bravely managed the ‘build your own sundae’ line

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Baylor’s brother, Auggie (aka Tank).

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Such great parents, lighting the candles.
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 Happy birthday, Baylor. Dig in!

The Wife Hat: Birthday boy

Happy birthday to my husband, who turns 33 today!

This man has given me two beautiful children and over eight years of happiness. He’s the one who taught me to live life to the fullest (and to save a penny or two while you’re at it). He makes me smile every morning and reminds me to be thankful every night. I couldn’t have asked for more. Oh, and he’s a bit good looking too.

Happy birthday, Ry guy!

Ryan and Colton (with Colton in 2012)

Ryan_cross(with Kelsey in 2010)

*He loves these two kids with all of his heart and would do anything to keep them safe, happy and healthy … forever.

The Birthday Hat: Thirty Years

Today, I’m 30. And truly there is no better age to be. If you asked me what I was most proud of these last thirty years, it’s the relationships I’ve made. The friendships I’ve formed. And the family I’ve created. Together with this man, we’ve made one cute little nest.

I’m at a place in my life where it’s not about snapping the perfect photo. Having the most expensive clothes. Wearing the newest trends. Or even decorating the best house. It’s about God. It’s about life. It’s about the moments when no one is paying attention and someone snaps a photo.

It’s about living life to the fullest and being hopeful the next thirty years are just as amazing. Thank you to my friends, family and husband for making my life so incredibly blessed!

The Birthday Hat: More Photos

I just can’t get enough! Here’s are some more photos of baby’s Mickey Mouse birthday party. PS – No one told this first-time-mom that red cupcake icing stains.

My father-in-law took all of these photos. Isn’t he fabulous? I didn’t re-touch a single one.

The Family Hat: Mickey Mouse Birthday

With friends and family, we celebrated Kelsey’s 2nd party with a Mickey Mouse party in the park. It seemed only fitting after our recent Disneyland vacation. Thank you to all of her friends who came to part-ay: TJ, Morgan, Raegan, Alexa, Ava, Jaxon, Thomas, Emma and Connor. And all of her adult friends too!

Her best friend at school, “Rae Rae” came to the party (thank you) and she was so surprised. We only needed 4 band-aids (she fell into the same bush, twice) and no tantrums. Ryan, Kelsey and I couldn’t have asked for better weather or better company.

So happy!

This is Lea and Grace, neighborhood friends of Kelsey (future babysitters?).


This is Raegan “rae rae” – Kelsey’s best friend from school.

Kelsey bug blowing out her candles.

We got the urge to pose like a soccer team.

And, that’s a wrap! Thanks to all for making Kelsey’s day special.