Friday, January 31, 2014

January photo love!

Below are my favorite pictures from January:

Our first morning of swim lessons, it was 28 degrees outside.  After we got home the girls played with their hats on for quite a while.
Meredith LOVES her new tulle skirt!  She had to wear this for a trip to Target.
The girls did great at their recent trip to the dentist.  They especially love to pick their prizes when they are finished.  The dentists office took this picture because the girls were wearing animal print which matches the dentist's safari themed office.
Sweet sisters!
Sweet sisters again!
Typical Meredith.  ;)
Who knew seeing each other through a window could be so much fun?!
Miranda at 5 months!
Miranda enjoying tummy time.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

"Snow" Day!

Southeast Texas rarely gets snow. We usually have an ice day every other year and snow flurries every 5 years or so. It rarely lasts long or sticks to the ground.  2004 was the last time we had a substantial amount of snow as seen in my picture below and it was only 2 or 3 inches.
I say all that because yesterday was a "snow day" for us.  Schools were closed because of our "winter weather watch".  According to the forecast it was supposed to snow around 9am, so when I sat down to feed Miranda at 10:30 I was sure our chance of snow had passed.  Thankfully, I looked at Facebook and saw posts from my friends in our old suburb that said they were seeing snow flurries.  I quickly had the girls put on their shoes and jackets to be ready for the flurries because I knew they wouldn't last long.  As Mackenzie was getting her shoes on the snow started to fall.  I sent the big girls outside while I got my shoes and jacket on (Miranda hung out in the living room.).

The girls had a blast!
I don't know how she saw anything! ;)  Also, can you tell her favorite color is pink?

You can barely see the flakes...but they are there.  I promise!
As you can see this how they spent their 10 minutes in flurries.  Running around with their hands out!
It didn't stick.  This is what our table looked like, but that's mainly because it already had ice on it.
The slide...
Meredith's gloves were just a little too big! Ha!
After the snow was gone and it was just raining/sleeting, they had fun looking at each other through the window.  Who knew that could be so much fun?!
At least they had a real reason to wear their new puffy coats we bought!  Especially since we'll be wearing short sleeves on Friday and Saturday when the highs are 73 and 72!  Crazy weather.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Miranda is 5 months!

Miranda is 5 months old!  Another month gone by and being a mother of three is getting a little easier.  I think the only time I get flustered is when 2 of 3 are crying and luckily that only happens about once every other day. It could be worse. :)

Miranda started sitting in the exersaucer this month.  This is helpful because it gives us another option other than me holding her.  She doesn't stay in it for a real long time, but at least it's helping strengthen her neck and back muscles!

At 5 months, Miranda...
- nurses about 6 times a day.
- wears 3-6 month clothing and size 1 shoes.
- loves to sleep in the swing and usually sleeps her first 3 or 4 hours at night in the swing.
- sucks on her hands and blows lots of bubbles.
- likes tummy time a little more now.
- rolls from tummy to back, but I think it's really more like letting her head pull her down and not too intentional.
- seems to like the exersaucer the few times she's sat in it.
- only sits quietly in her carseat if it's moving - by car, stroller or me.  Otherwise she cries.
- likes to sit in my lap when I'm sitting in the table.  She doesn't really lay back in my lap - she prefers to sit up (and strengthen her back muscles!). 

All 3 girls at 5 months...

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Science: Letters A & B

I found these awesome printables for different science lessons based on the alphabet.  I had forgotten about them until our letter B unit, so while we played catch up last week with Meredith, Mackenzie and I went back to letter A.

A is for Absorb...
"Absorb means to soak up." 

Our first experiment was something I had been wanting to do for a while, but just hadn't taken the all consuming time of gathering plastic cups, water, food coloring and a paper towel. ;)  Mackenzie was super excited to squirt food coloring in the cups.
I think she thought it was going to be pretty quick...
But it took most of the afternoon just to get this far.  I added more water to the cups so it wouldn't have to travel as far.
By the next morning, we had purple water!  So, not only an experiment in absorption, but also color changes! ;)

Our other experiment was testing different items to see if they absorbed water.  We tested a bib, candle, plastic toy, washcloth, straw, sponge, rock, clown nose, napkin, q-tip and rubber porcupine ball.

The first one to absorb was the bib and she clearly thought it was neat. ;)  We talked about how if you can squeeze water out of it, then it absorbed water. 

When we tested the napkin, we talked about how materials that absorb liquids also typically change shapes.
Squeezing water out of the clown nose (it's a spongy clown nose.) 
Boring straw and rock...

Washcloth...I thought it was funny that she seemed surprised by this when we use a washcloth on a daily basis, but oh well. 

I saved the sponge for last and didn't tell her what it was.  It's one of those "dehydrated" sponges that shrinks down really small until you get it wet.  Her face after it "absorbed" all of the water is great!  She really was excited about it and loved that it expanded.  Again, discussions on changing shapes and being able to squeeze water out.

As we tested items, we sorted them into "doesn't absorb" and "does absorb."  She chose to put the q-tip in the middle because she said the ends absorbed the water, but the middle didn't.  I was not expecting her to notice, but am very happy she did!
I LOVE that Mackenzie knows what absorb means.  She has a great memory, so she would probably remember the definition without the hands on experiments, but now she has that visual too, so I know she'll really remember the concept, now. 

Of course, after the experiment, she had to play with the water.  She probably played with plain water and cups for at least 20 minutes!  ;)

For letter B, the concept was bounce. 
Mackenzie decided to draw bouncing balls on her sheet.
This fit perfect into our "B is for Ball" tot school unit, so Meredith was around while we tested things to see if they bounced.  First, we tested all of our balls like we did last year.  I love her look when this ball didn't bounce!
Next, they bounced themselves. ;)

Finally, we tested other objects to see if they bounce...her face will tell you if it did. :)

I love these printables because they are science concepts that Mackenzie should know about and they are simple enough for her to understand.  Plus, the experiments are fun!  Letter C is "cook", so stay tuned for that fun!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Hand-me-down Organization

Having more than 2 kids of the same gender means a lot of hand-me-downs!  With two or three sizes different between the girls, my pile of clothes was quickly growing.  Miranda's closet is very large and became hand me down central for our house.  Previously I kept the clothes in space saver bags and it was working fairly well until I had to keep clothes for Miranda.  All of a sudden the hand me down pile became a little crazy and disorganized.
So, just after Christmas I ordered some drawers from Ikea and I'm sooooo glad I did!  Look at the closet now! 
These are perfect and the large drawers hold so much.  I couldn't be happier.  I even added some labels. 
Iheartorganizing blogged about using sticky back book plates from Staples' Martha Stewart collection on her drawers, so I bought some too.  Now, each drawer is labeled so that I can easily pull out the clothes I need each season.  I can also easily change the paper card in the label as we shift sizes.
I put all of the swim stuff - bathing suits, cover ups & flip flops - in one drawer.  I did this because last year I ended up buying two suits for Meredith not realizing I had two that would have fit her in the next size up of hand-me-downs.  This way, they are all in the same place and Meredith and Miranda can try on all that we have first before buying.
 Socks and (non-matched) bloomers...
Dress shoes - all sizes and colors...
All sandals...
As I said, these baskets hold a lot of stuff!  This drawer is just 18-24 months spring and summer!  Miranda has a lot of clothes coming her way. ;)
Tennis shoes and boots still have to sit on the closet shelf, but at least the others are all out of the way.  There was also a perfect amount of space above the smaller set of drawers for blankets and quilts (we have a TON!). Nice dresses hang up on the right side of the closet so they won't get messed up.   
The entire right shelf is filled with diapers, pull ups and wipes!  Having two in diapers stinks.  Literally. :/  I'm hoping to change some of that starting Friday, so here's hoping we can get rid of some of those!

Just for fun, here's the before and after photo - what a difference!

I love it!  It makes me smile every time I walk in Miranda's closet.  I just have to finish the details on another organizational project (from the same Ikea order) and I'll blog about that soon!
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