Wordless Wednesday: My Favorite Christmas Gifts

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Wordless Wednesday: My Favorite Christmas Gifts

My children made me and Daddy O. adorable gifts for Christmas – a butterfly sun catcher, and a decorative tin can, which now holds my makeup brushes. Their excitement having us open these gifts was so precious.

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Savoring Fall Fun

We’ve been busy lately, squeezing in all the outdoor fun we can to enjoy this gorgeous Wisconsin season.  Last week temperatures were mild – upper 60’s to even some 70’s, so we had the perfect day to visit a petting farm and their pumpkin patch.

After visiting all of the animals (and petting some) and going on a tractor ride, we walked and ran through the cornfield to the pumpkin patch to find the perfect pumpkins.  My kids picked the small ones very quickly and were ready to move on to have our picnic lunch.  Days like this are fleeting in fall, so I’m glad we shared it with my sister’s family and our parents to create fun family traditions.

Fall Fun collage

What are your favorite fall traditions?  I LOVE my husband’s pumpkin bars that he lovingly makes with a baking pumpkin instead of the canned stuff.  Hope everyone is enjoying October!

For some of the favorite things about fall, check out The Girls Who Blogs post.

Talking with a Toddler and a Pre-schooler

Over the weekend I read The Sadder But Wiser Girl’s Weekly Wrap Up, and the Fly on the Wall post reminded me that I should share some of the random things that I hear around my own house. If you haven’t checked out Sarah’s blog, you should! She will make you laugh, sing, dance, and nod your head in agreement!

Okay – onto talking with a toddler and a pre-schooler.  Big sister is just past 3.5 and little brother is quickly approaching age 2. They are talkative and funny, surprising me almost daily in their sweet little voices:

Big sister says

  • “Big sisters don’t like to be copied.”  As a younger sister, I’m SURE my big sister said this to me numerous times.  No truer words have been spoken my dear.  I told her that her brother only copies her because he loves her, but she was not buying that.
  • “I am old enough for school now.”  She said this when I went back to work at 3.5, so the transition went well!  YES!
  • Daddy O – “Kids stop harassing your mother.”Big sister – “But we harass Mom because we love her.” Awh, thanks?!

Little Brother says

  • At 20 months, “Wear the orange one.” when helping me pick out his clothes.
  • “Mama come here.”  Sometimes he screams this!
  • “Be right back. Just a second.”
  • He took my book (at the time it was “Mad Women: The other side of life on Madison Avenue in the ’60’s and beyond” by Jane Maas), turning the pages, told me, “It says no wrestling.”  Given how much I say that, I can understand why he thinks my book would say that!
  • “Sumo (our cat) puked.”  This is a common occurrence in our house, but he really had me convinced that she HAD puked again…somewhere. Fortunately, he was wrong!

Now picture these cuties below saying these phrases.  No wonder why they crack me up!

Big sister, Mama O, Daddy O, and Little Brother

The best family picture we’ve had in a LONG time!

Thank you, dear children, for blessing our house with a lot of laughter and love!  I am sure you will continue to surprise us with the creative statements and questions that will pass your lips.

For more words from Big Sister, read Choose Your Words Carefully.

I’ve been keeping track of the crazy things my kids say by using notes on my tablet (and reviewing some Facebook status updates).  How do you record and remember what your kids say?

Related posts

I really enjoyed these memorable posts from some of my favorite bloggers.  Check ’em out!

All I Really Need to Know about Parenting I Learned in Marketing: Rebranding

As I see so many parallels between my professional background and parenting techniques, I’ve decided to write a series of posts on All I Really Need to Know about Parenting I Learned in Marketing.

Part 1: Rebranding

It’s something that companies turn to when the current brand has grown a little stale, as a way to reposition it for future growth and success.

Little did I know as a marketing student and professional how useful rebranding would be as a parent. A parental rebranding is an amazing way to help motivate your children’s behavior with a positive and fun approach to everyday tasks. Words like special, magic, bonus, play, and adventure should be used LIBERALLY in any parental rebranding.

Just take a look at some of my favorite parental rebranding examples:

1. Dessert becomes Lunchtime / Dinnertime Bonus and even has it’s own theme song:

    Lunchtime bonus, Lunchtime bonus, Lunchtime bonus, if you eat well (clap, clap).

2. Get over here and clean up now becomes, “I need a special helper.” or “Will you be on my clean-up team? We then sing the Wonder Pets Teamwork song together.  My daughter even asked me to be on her clean-up team this week.  Score 1 Mom / CEO! 

3. Trip to the store or a walk becomes a Secret Adventure. Dress-up costumes, sunglasses, magnifying glasses, flashlights, and backpacks are excellent accessories for secret adventures.

4. Reminder to use manners becomes use the magic words.  I’m sure you’ve heard and used this one before!

5. Broccoli becomes Green Trees. Who doesn’t want to pretend they are a giant chomping on green trees?

What things have you rebranded for your family?  I’d love to hear your own creative ideas!

5 Favorite Kid’s Books – so good you’ll cry

Reading with my children is THE BEST!  I love the quiet time, snuggled together, sharing so many wonderful books with both my 1 year old and 3 year old (and sometimes shedding happy tears in the process).  Here are 5 of our favorite books:

1. On the Night You Were Born  by Nancy Tillman. I first read this book when I was expecting, and I couldn’t get through it then without getting choked up. Since reading it more and more, I’m able to finish it tear-free sometimes, but it just reminds me how beautiful and unique each of my children are.  They are true gifts from above.

2. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. This is such a classic book. I often think as parents we are the tree, trying to do whatever we can to make our children happy and providing unconditional love. HOPEFULLY I can teach my children to be more giving in return than the boy in the book. Tears usually come closer to the end.

3. My Firstborn, There’s No One Like You  and My Youngest, There’s No One Like You by Dr. Kevin Leman & Kevin Leman II.  I received these books as gifts from my mom, and they are both sweet on reminding my firstborn and youngest how they are each special in his and her own way.  Again, I’ll be crying by the final pages.

4. Tonight You Are My Baby by Jeannine Q. Norris.  I received this book last year, and remember reading it to my daughter and baby boy last Christmas. This was around the time when I decided to become a SAHM for awhile.  It’s a sweet take on Mary’s view of Baby Jesus, repeating the line throughout the story, “Tomorrow you will be King, But tonight you are my baby.”

5. Love You Forever by Robert Munsch.  This is probably the biggest tear-jerker of them all!  I remember hearing this read and sung for Mother’s Day, and all of the moms (myself included) were crying.  I need to practice reading this one, or maybe let Daddy O. have a go at it!

Do you have any favorite children’s books that make you cry?  Let me know!  We’d love to check them out.

Be sure to check out the great resource that Jennifer at Turtle and Robot put together, including the list: My Top 20 Books for a Baby.  I just looked at it for Christmas gift ideas for my kiddos.