Wednesday, October 4, 2017

...and then they were FOUR...


These four year olds are some of the most silly, sweet, stubborn little girls I've ever known. They make my heart explode and they make me completely crazy in the blink of an eye. They make me laugh all the time with the funny things they say and do and they can warm my soul just by telling me they love me. Their favorite thing lately is to wait until my patience is wearing thin to say something like, "Mom can I tell you something?" I usually respond with a heavy sigh and an eye roll and a "what?" Then they answer, "I love you!" *Que the melting heart.* Or they say something like "I love you so much I want to cry." Silly little girls! 
They love to make their brother laugh. Alya is really good about letting him play with them when she is not engrossed in her show...or when he's not trying to play with something of hers. She really worries about him slobbering on her things and she doesn't like to bath with him because she worries that he'll pee in the tub! She can easily figure out what he wants her to do and she is usually very eager to do it for him. Just tonight he went and grabbed one of his hats and offered it to Alya, she gladly took it and let him chase her around the house until he "caught" her and took his hat back and then they repeated the steps of the game. It was so cute, and once Lyla figured out what they were doing she quickly wanted to join in. I love how she interacts with her siblings. She is usually the first to give in when she and Lyla are arguing and sometimes she just prefers to be alone.  
The girls are getting really good at counting! They can both consistently count to at least 13. Lyla can count to 13 or higher, or as she puts it, "all the way to the top!" Her counting usually goes something like this: "1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-14-19-17-18-19!!!"Alya's counting goes like this: "1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-13-16-17!" 
Their favorite songs right now are the Moana songs. They asked me to download them on my phone and every time we turn them on they practice. Lyla feels like she finally learned all the lyrics to "How Far I'll Go" and she is so proud of herself! She sings really well with the soundtrack and even by herself! 
They also really like "the coyote song." It's one of Dad's classic country songs where the singer makes a coyote whooping sound in the song. They love to sing along and I love to listen to them! 
Alya will tell you her favorite singer is Carrie Underwood and I think Lyla would tell you that her's is Syliva. (Your Nobody Called Today)
Along with singing Moana, the girls love to play Moana. They like to take turns being the white Moana and the "regular Moana." They have also been practicing their galloping skills lately! They always ask me to watch them gallop up and down the hall. They like to pretend they are unicorns or horses. They also enjoy dressing up as Anna and Elsa. It's so fun to watch them and listen to them when they play together. It's usually best when they don't know I'm watching or listening. It's like they get a little self conscious when they notice I am paying attention to what they are playing. Some mornings the girls will wake up and just start playing in their room for an hour or two before they come upstairs and say their good morning...which is, "Mom, can I have some juice?" Haha! 
They like to play outside, but it's rare that they will play outside for more than 20 minutes on their own. They definitely like to know that someone is there, so if I stay inside and send them in the backyard, they usually don't last long. Even to go to the park they are generally done after about 30 minutes or so. But they love to play inside and watch their shows...which I struggle with, but I think we have a good balance!  
The girls got new bikes for their birthdays and they have ridden them to the park twice now. It's quite the experience! On flat roads they don't dare go any faster than about 3 miles an hour. If they get going any faster than that they instantly hit their breaks. But when crossing the road, as the road slopes toward the driveway, they obviously pick up speed and no matter how many times I yell to hit the breaks, they just can't seem to find them! They always crash. I get so frustrated and find it so funny at the same time! The day after they got their bikes Alya tried telling me she was ready for her training wheels to be off! Haha! I'd say we definitely need to practice on the bikes a little bit first!  
Lyla is a sassy little thing! I don't remember the exact circumstances, but one Sunday her dad was trying to get her ready for church. The dress that she wanted to wear was not available and she was not happy about that! So she told her dad that she was "never going to go to church again!" As sassy as she is, though, she is also very tender. She has a very sensitive little soul and she loves to feel loved and offer her love to others. She is very shy but she can overcome that when she feels she needs to - that's usually when she feels like it will benefit her sister. She loves to tell us how much she loves us and she is always giving us little things, like pictures she has drawn or little shapes she has cut out. When I was planning girls camp this year, almost everyday she cut out new shapes and told me they were for me to take to girls camp, so she helped me tape them all onto a big sheet of paper and put it in my camp book. She loves to show me how well she can hold her brother! She wraps her arms under his armpits and lifts him off the ground about four inches and carries him as far as she can, and he loves it, and she is very proud of her abilities! 
The girls both weight the same and are the same height! They are 3'2" (95%) and they are 36.4 lbs (50%). I remember last year, and the year before that, and the year before that, thinking they were so big! But I can't believe how much they have changed and how big they seem to me now. I know that next year and every year after I am going to think the same thing, but I wish I could turn back time and appreciate how small they were...and I hope I can remind myself now that they are still small!! I really don't want them to grow up too fast!  
The girls love to help me around the house! One of their chores is to put new bags in the garbage cans once I've taken them out. They love it! They can do many, many things, but sometimes they don't like to do those things. Getting themselves dressed...carrying groceries inside the up their toys...etc. It's kind of funny.
I feel like they look more and more alike every day! I have been mixing them up so often lately! Lyla got sick of it one day (haha!) because by 10:00 am I had mixed them up three or four times! She finally said, "Ya know, we are different!" Oh man! I felt a little bad! But don't you think they are identical!?
I love, love, love these two little girls. They are teaching me so much about what it means to be a mom. I wish I was better about playing with them or doing school with them or reading them stories. I wish I was better at spending one on one time with them. I wish I was more patient with them. I feel bad that they have to be my "guinea pigs" but they do it so well. They are so sweet and so patient with me. They are so kind and timid and loving. I love them so very much!!! I hope that they know how much I love them. I hope they can see that I want what's best for them and I hope they know that they mean the world to me!!
-Happy Birthday Sweet Girls!-

Lyla is wearing the minty floral dress, Alya is wearing the blue birdie dress. 

Friday, September 22, 2017

{9.11.17 - 9.17.17}

I can't stand how much I love this!  
The girls asked if they could paint on some wood today. I think their projects turned out super cute! After Lyla saw Alya's grumpy smile pumpkin so wanted a grumpy smile for her flower. Who am I to say no?  
I am getting closer to being done with the girls' quilts!! // Don't let that face fool you. This kid LOVES strawberries! 
All three of them love this. Axel thinks it's hilarious and the girls are surprisingly really good at carrying him! 
My babies turned 4 this week! And I tried really hard to make them some cute unicorn cakes, but they turned out to be more of a fail than even I thought they would! Lyla told me, "if that's the best you can do..." (She wanted the eyes to be more than a line!)  
At least the rainbow effect inside worked for me!  
 They were not allowed to peek at their present in the garage!!
 They said "MY VERY OWN BIKE!!!"
Lyla loves her new bike! 
And so does Alya! They rode around the garage for days. They would come inside and play for a minute and then announce that they were going to go ride their bikes for a minute. This pattern went on for 3 days!
Lyla is sporting some of her new birthday clothes...and helmet! // He had to try on sister's new boots!
I've said it before...this boy loves shoes, and they definitely don't have to be his own! 

{9.4.17 - 9.10.17}

We had some fun adventures this week! I love "busy" weeks like this!
 On Labor Day we took a drive to Capital Reef
The kids had fun doing a couple of short hikes and pretending to be bears. Axel did NOT want to be held - surprise surprise! Lyla, however, did NOT want to hike sometimes! Haha!

The girls stacked their own rocks! 
 Lyla and the left, Alya on the right.
We found a little spring with this old broken down truck, so we played around a little! 

Alya was worn right out! I don't know how she sleeps on these bumpy roads! // Lyla was bright eyed and bushy tailed...maybe it's all the hiking she got out of doing! 
The views were gorgeous!  
If I remember right, this is a view of Cathedral Valley. 

We ended up in the pine trees and quakies for dinner. We got rained on a little but that won't stop these kids! They loved wondering around and playing with dirt and sticks! Especially Axel-who was buckled in his carseat for the majority of the day! He was such a trooper! // Lyla found a woodpecker feather!
The kids found a little haven from the rain and claimed it as their own hut! 

It's hard to get a good family photo with a good shot of the beautiful view in the background... 
Jeni invited us up to go through the Dinosaur Museum with her and Grandma! Axel loved it!! 
The girls loved the sleepover they got to have with Jeni afterwards! (They liked the Dinosaur Museum, too!) 
Axel and I got to enjoy some alone time while his sisters were at Jeni's house. I thought he'd be bored out of his mind without the girls, but he surprised me! He was very content the whole time! 
On Saturday we went and drove up Hell's Backbone on the Boulder Mountain. It was beautiful!! 
I don't know exactly where we were, but there were hundreds of lakes on this mountain. We found a couple of them and the kids had a lot of fun exploring. // Axel, of course, did not want any help getting over any of the logs and rocks.  
I love this blue eyed boy!! // And this silly Alya! 
Log walking! "Arms out for balance!" -Alya // Lyla 
Axel's turn on the log. He loved everything about this. The "balancing" and especially the jumping off! // Dad and Alya 
We found a pretty little waterfall. One of the perks of being on a mountain where there are tons of lakes! // We tried to fish at this little lake but didn't have any luck...but it was great to enjoy the scenery! 
 Axel was so done with being in his carseat, but he is such a pain to hold in the front seat. He just wants to pull on every lever and push every button and play with anything and everything he can see. So Dad let him sit on his lap. As you can see, he thought that was pretty cool!

I love these beautiful colors! As much as I like summer, there really is something so exciting about fall.  
For some reason I thought this was beautiful. Obviously there was a burn or something (maybe a bug?) that killed these trees, but I love all the new growth and all the colors. It was just kind of a testament to me that beautiful things come from hard times and change. 
While his dad and sisters were trying to find a spot to fish (with no luck) Axel and I got to have a little photo shoot!  
Can you see the road in the middle of this picture? And by road, I mean bridge. I think this is why this mountain is called Hell's Backbone. On either side of that bridge it is a straight drop off. But it was so pretty!! 
She's trying so hard not to smile! While the girls and Matthew were fishing Axel and I just wandered up and down the dock and up the stairs. Alya ended up walking up above where Axel and I were and she just stood there like this, watching. Something about the way she was standing made her look so big to me.  
We stopped for dinner and while we were eating, this owl flew right over our heads and landed at the top of that tree. He sat and watched us for a really long time. It was kind of cool!
On Sunday -we decided to play hooky from our regional conference and drove over to Strawberry to watch the Salmon run.  
It was pretty cool! We couldn't get too close to any of them so the pictures aren't what I wanted them to be, but it was still pretty cool! 

And obviously, since we were here we had to fish...or rather try to fish! I think the cold water surprised Axel a little! // I love this picture of Lyla. She's such a ham!
I wish this picture of Alya wasn't blurry, but it's still cute! // Axel loved throwing rocks. This kid is resilient! He had to have been cold since he got his bum so wet and then he was walking through the grass and thistle like it was nothing! Crazy kid!  
We may not be able to catch any fish, but Matthew is pretty good at catching crawdads!  

I love adventures like this! I love when we get to see new things and explore as a family! It makes it even better when the kids are on bored and have fun with it! (It's always worth it, I know...but sometimes the whining makes me wonder! Haha!)