School’s Out for Summer!

It’s official. Kelsey is on her way to first grade and I’m left wondering where the time goes. We were holding hands today and I kept thinking back to the first time I put her little fingers in the palm of my hand. Back to the first time I touched her cheek. The first time I combed her hair. And now look at her!

And Colton … wasn’t he just born? Now he’s less than a head shorter than Kelsey and has more personality than all three of my kids combined. His smile lights up the room, and my heart. Then there’s our little nugget, Nolan. Seven teeth and counting and only eight months young. I was rocking him to sleep tonight and I told him to stay small for just a short while longer. I’m really not ready to let these kids grow up. Mostly because it feels like with each passing year they get more and more independent from me. And while I know that’s life, and that’s what they are supposed to do, a HUGE part of my heart wants to keep them in my arms forever.

Well, we’ve been doing so much in the first few days of summer. I took Friday off of work to take Kelsey and her best friend, Colin to an indoor amusement park. We did bumper cars, mini bowling and arcade games. And then I went into the laser tag arena and came out with a migraine. Seriously. The lights! And then Saturday we took the kids to Encanto Park. I’ve been living in Phoenix forever and never knew this park existed. We were there to take family photos of one of my friends’ kids – and decided to hang out until sundown at the amusement park, Enchanted Island (located inside the park).

I’d say the first few days of summer have been good to us. Here’s to another season of more memories with these three.

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Lazy weekend mornings with my boys, and Nolan’s thighs.


Almost as delicious as Nolan’s legs are these In-n-Out burgers.

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Kelsey and her buddy, Colin. I think he’s trying to eat her face. You know … kids.

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Who do you think is the dominate one in the relationship?

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Bumper cars with my little lady.

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At the park, Kelsey had met Scarlet just five minutes prior and yet they were inseparable. Can we just take a moment to talk about their hair for a second. I mean … is this real life?

many hats of a mom blog

many hats of a mom blog

The two cuties on the left are twins. And who doesn’t love Colton’s little Alfalfa hairstyle in this picture. See it?

many hats of a mom blog

Summer nights are the best. And yes, I realize it’s not officially summer but we’re in Phoenix and we’re hitting triple digits already, so to us … it’s summah.

Life in a few Snapshots

Life has been amazing lately. Here are some pictures and stories on what’s been going on in the Cross household these past few days.

many hats of a mom blog

I volunteered at Kelsey’s school this morning. Her kindergarten class was having a “fall football party” and it was the perfect excuse for me to actually shower, curl my hair and put on a dress. When you’re on maternity leave, you don’t do much of that. At least I don’t.

many hats of a mom blog

The St. Regis Aspen Resort sent Nolan his very own tooth fairy box! It was the sweetest gesture. I had one just like it when I was young – only mine wasn’t nearly as fancy. It was a small wooden box and it wasn’t personalized. This one takes the cake.


Speaking cake (bad transition?), I baked! It was so easy to make, even Kelsey & Colton were able to help me. I saw the recipe on the Food Network (I watch a lot of TV lately). I highly recommend it – the pie, not a lot of TV.  Here is the recipe from The Pioneer Woman. She gives a great tip on her show: Once you’ve transferred the batter to your pie crust, take the extra leftovers and put it in the refrigerator – it makes a great pudding on its own!

many hats of a mom blog

I became a soccer mom! This beautiful (and oh-so serious) girl of mine had her first soccer game over the weekend. No, I don’t own a minivan. No, I’m not getting a minivan. Yes, I am officially a soccer mom and proud of it.

many hats of a mom blog

many hats of a mom blog

Colton, Kelsey and I play cards every morning before school. It’s becoming “our thing”. The other day, Colton was tatted with all of these super hero stickers. I bought him stickers to give to each of his friends at school and I think he went a little overboard on his fair share of the goods.

nolan 20 days

Nolan and I are enjoying every waking moment together. Here’s an iPhone pic I snapped of him this morning. I seriously can’t get enough of those cheeks. Next week, we have our one month doctor’s appointment. I can’t wait to see how much he has grown.

Ryan and I aren’t too experienced but so far this three-kid-thing is more than we ever hoped for. We are so incredibly happy. I hope your week is off to a great start.

Winter Weather

arizona mom blog

arizona mom blog

arizona mom blog

arizona mom blog

Life isn’t always roses, sunshine and Mickey Mouse balloons. I get that. This morning while I was on my way to grab Starbucks I noticed this fog over South Mountain. I ran home, grabbed my camera and went to get a closer look. It was so gloomy, foggy and truly perfect weather for the mood that I was in.

I’ve been in a bit of a funk this week. Let’s just say I missed some deadlines at work, struck out during a major presentation, forgot about two kid parties, can’t seem to keep up with this house (is it ever going to be clean again?), and then Colton threw up all over my new dress seconds before I headed out the door to go to my husband’s work holiday party.

I’ve been a hot mess this week. I’ve done some major soul-searching, re-prioritizing and praying – the prayers seem to be the thing that makes me feel better. I feel truly blessed that I have a God who is on my side, who listens, who guides and who calms my heart when I’m at my craziest.

So, anyway, happy Saturday to you! I hope you find your zen and can find time this weekend for a quiet moment away. It really helps.

We took over the mall for a few hours



Family night out

It was an indulge-in-a-vanilla-shake-from-IN-and-Out-Burger, mixed with shopping at the Disney store kind of night. We took the mall by storm. No really, we kind of did. Have you seen how fast Colton can run? And for whatever reason, if there is a lot of people nearby and many breakable things around, he runs even faster.



Taking a spin

Before we left for the store, Kelsey emptied her piggy bank and picked out all of the quarters. She stuffed them into her purse so she could pay for things at the mall. It was the sweetest thing. We rode this merry-go-round with her quarters. She even paid for her little brother to ride it twice. I don’t know who was more proud in that moment …me, or her.




We found relief in Pottery Barn

Well, mostly I did. I love Pottery Barn so much and the fact that it’s all decked out in fall colors makes this mama one happy lady. While Ryan was trying to wrangle Colton from running into every shelf, corner and taking out every aisle, I was busy drooling over their new stuff. We made it through the entire store without any child knocking over anything and then I go and run right into a sign and nearly knock it over to the floor. Seriously, sometimes we worry so much about our kids and we are actually the clumsy ones.

many hats of a mom | Family night out

coltonMy people

There is nothing (nothing!) I love more than being around these people. It’s the silly things Kelsey will say, the crazy things Colton will do and the most special moments Ryan gives me just by allowing me into his heart every day. I don’t have enough lucky stars to thank for the blessings that I’ve been given. To know these three people has given me more fulfillment and joy than I could have ever asked for (I have God to thank for that).


Summer has been really good to us, lots of family memories are being made over here. Some of our favorite things about summer:

1. Pooltime!
2. Bright umbrellas, palm trees and blue skies
3. Nektar Juice bar every Saturday morning after swim class
4. Refreshing bowls of cherries
5. Sunday morning church (and trying to sneak in a photo)
6. Frozen (that one was for Kelsey)

We hope summer is treating you and your family well too. It’s hoooooot out here, but the kids are loving it.

Children Soothe the Soul

I’m convinced that no one can possibly be in a bad mood when swinging with children. The complete joy that comes from being around two of my favorite kids, while swinging outdoors in the summer sun … what could possibly beat it? Ryan and I are still trying to figure out a way to quit our jobs, still make money the same amount of money and do nothing all day except play with these two. So far, we can’t figure out how to swing that (bad pun alert). Meanwhile, these photos are from our summer vacation in the mountains.


How Weekends Should Always Start

I’m pretty sure that every weekend should kick off with a summer pool party with your best pal. Teri is finally back in the United States and I couldn’t be more excited! I think we freaked everyone out at the restaurant when we screamed like … well, girls … when we reunited for the first time in 2014! Naturally, our 3 hour lunch date ended with drinks at my house, poolside. The perfect summer Friday if you ask me.

summer summer summer summer

Girlfriends at every age

Even when you’re four, you realize the value of good girlfriends. These girls have known each other all of their lives and it’s so much fun watching them grow up. I love how close they all are and I hope they remain friends forever. Or at least up until high school so I can bring out these photos and they can reminisce with me. Have a wonderful weekend.

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