Tuesday, December 15, 2015

CHRISTMAS BLUES

Over here at the French household we love us some Christmas…like, we decorated before Thanksgiving inside our house but made ourselves wait until the weekend after to decorate the outside. And by decorate, I mean my husband goes all out with the lights!



But if we love Christmas so much then you might be wondering why I titled this post “Christmas Blues”, so let me explain in two words:
THIS WEATHER
I am all for mild weather…I love not having to freeze my butt off every single time I go outside. I love being able to take Ellie outside to play…BUT it is December and in December it should snow!!! It doesn’t have to snow all December, but at least a little.  I realized this year that the cold weather actually gets me more into the holiday spirit and without it…well, without it Christmas just seems sort of fake. It has been hard to really enjoy all of the things we usually love: 
~~cuddling up under a fuzzy blanket and watching movies…who needs a blanket when it’s 60 degrees outside?!?!
~~Drinking any sort of warm beverage or making delicious warm meals like chili or vegetable soup…who wants eat hot stuff when the weather screams “cook out”?!?!?
You get my point???
I just want it to be cold and maybe have some snow for Christmas…can I at least wear my winter jacket and cute scarf?!?!? Come January if the weather wants to go back to unseasonably mild temps…great, but give me some snow for Christmas…or at least some frost!
Anyone else feel like this weather is seriously messing with their holiday spirit, or am I the only seasonally grinched individual?
Even Ellie is confused!

Ps...With all of that said, I am still a little excited for Christmas because I have an almost 2 year old who doesn't give a crap about the weather and will be so much fun to watch Christmas morning. So I guess I am not a total Grinch this year!!

Monday, November 23, 2015

One Million Pictures

Since the weather is just now starting to act like winter and not fall…and since I have not blogged in several months…and since I have just now gotten around to uploading all of my fun pictures from the last several months, today I will be sharing ONE MILLION fun fall pictures with you…sort of.

I will spare you some of them, of course, so it really won’t be one million pictures…duh.

I have missed you all and I have missed writing and I am so sure you have missed us too, right? RIGHT? So now I give you

THE FRENCH FAMILY FALL RECAP

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We carved pumpkins! This kid loves getting her hands dirty…mud, rocks, water, playdoh…so we assumed playing with the insides of a pumpkin would be like the greatest thing ever for her. Turns out, not so much. She picked up one seed and was pretty much done with that.

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But she did really love pumpkins this year and wanted to sit on our front porch with them as much as possible, which worked out because we had accumulated 900 pumpkins over a month because every time we went anywhere she fell in love and had to have another. We are suckers for fall and decorating so we didn’t mind.

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Speaking of collecting pumpkins, we got most from pumpkin patches we visited.  Ellie had so much fun at both places we went and loved the animals, slides and pumpkins.

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And what is fall without a little trick or treating?!?! She wore a pumpkin outfit my mom had made for my sister to wear when she was little…so it was a bit more special then anything I could have come up.  Since Ellie was obsessed with pumpkins she fell in the love with the costume so it worked out great. I tried to get Joe to dress up with me to take her around but he was having none of that…so i resorted to wearing a dumb looking witch hat.  I embarrassed him a little and showed holiday spirit…so a win win for me (other then it looked pretty dorky, but whatevs)

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She did so good going up to the door and sort of saying “trick or treat” but the sweetest thing was her saying “tank you” after every time and it was the most precious thing ever!!! We only went to a handful of houses because she didn’t really care or understand what the heck we were doing, but this momma wanted some pictures, and she had fun dressing up so it all worked out.

Last, but not least…what would our fall recap be without some leaf play?!?!

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It has been a pretty busy couple of months and we have loved taking advantage of this beautiful warmish weather while it has lasted. Now we are looking forward to a very happy week full of giving thanks for so many things, hopefully watching the Buckeyes pull off a win, maybe some snow flurries, yummy food and my sister and her boyfriend are coming to town…our week is going to be amazing!

Happy Monday!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Punkies at Lynd Fruit Farm

We had a really fun past weekend and I ended up taking so many darn pictures that it took me until today to even put them on my computer to actually write this post… total procrastinator…I’m working on it.

Since the weather was super fall like on Sunday we decided to head over to Lynd Fruit Farm in Pataskala and had every intention of going apple picking. 

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Once we actually got there, Ellie was in such awe of the “punkies”  (pumpkins) that we didn’t even end up picking apples. Please note I was wearing those giant boots above because I thought we would be in the fields just a picking away…and then we didn’t but I still had the boots, so whatever.

Back to the punkies…she was obsessed and it was the cutest thing ever!!!! She continued to walk around to all of the bins and picked out different shapes and colors and was so excited.

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She seriously could not get enough of the punkies…she wanted to carry them around, she wanted to sit with them…she wanted to eat them and hug them…

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(she is holding a pretzel…not a cig!!)

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You guys…it was so much fun watching this little girl be so excited about all things fall. She loved everything and couldn’t get enough. We know she will adore going to a pumpkin patch and are planning that trip next.  Not only did we love this market but we also bought a ton of stuff there too…apple cider, a million pumpkins for our front step, gluten free noodles made from a local lady…tomatoes and peppers from their gardens.  It was a really cool place…check it out for sure if you are looking for something to do.

And don’t say I didn’t warn you about the amount of photos I took…

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Thoughts For Thursday- Road Trips With a Toddler

So…I love a good road trip. Windows down, music blaring, singing along loudly, random snacks and fountain pop...  I also don’t mind small road trips…like an hour here and there. We actually drive to Columbus quite often for different reasons and I usually don’t mind these trips, except lately Ellie has decided to take on a new personality in the car…and it makes things less fun.

I have come to realize there is a huge difference between a hour long car ride by myself or with my husband…and a hour long car ride with Ellie.  Let me explain…

Car ride by myself:

Drink my iced coffee, find some random songs on my phone I haven’t listened to in forever, blare them and sing along…before you know it I am at my destination and the little drive was actually a stress reliever for me.

Car ride with the kid:

Talking and random noise making that starts at a quiet decibel but then slowly increases minute by minute until neither one of us can even here the itsy bitsy spider, or whatever in the heck song I have put on in hopes of calming my child into chill mode…which of course didn’t work because now she is screaming, but not out of being mad, nope….just because she likes to hear herself scream.  I am chugging my iced coffee and by the time we reach our destination I am completely stressed and the kid is covered in cheerios, water (because it’s so fun to watch it drip out of her “leak proof” cup, and ripped up magazine that I threw back to her in hopes to quite her)

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Obviously US Weekly is totally age appropriate for her…

Of course I love the little monkey and sometimes the stuff she does in the car is the cutest and funniest thing I have ever heard or seen, like this little gem of a video… but then again sometimes I just want some quite and my good old random music back.

Anyone else with me on this!?!?!?!

 

Linking up with Annie and Natalie for “Thoughts for Thursday”

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Tuesday Talk—For the Love of Rice

Hey guys! Hope the beginning of your week has been good to you…tomorrow is Hump Day so that’s a positive!

My Monday and Tuesday were spent feeling like every parent that has twins or “Irish twins” are saints!  I have taken a tiny side “job” of watching my cousins daughter a day or two a week.  She is a month younger then Ellie so on those days I have two little munchkins running around getting their hot little hands on anything/everything they can! Today we ventured to the park and I was reminded of the days of being a new mom and underestimating the length of time it took to get a new baby out of the house…let alone two toddlers. Needless to say I was late to the park…but we got there in one piece…so I count that as a win. I realize all you mothers of multiples or even of two, three, four kids are probably rolling your eyes or laughing at me right now…and I get it, I guess…but I am telling you I admire you for what you do on a day to day basis…bless you! This mama is exhausted running around with two 20 month olds…why are they never tired too!!!

All kidding aside, they are actually pretty darn good. They love each other and play well together and, for the most part, are sweet little buddies. I have been trying to come up with creative and fun things to do to keep them busy because dumping out the baskets of toys over and over again doesn’t always entertain them.

Yesterday I got brave and decided it was a good idea to fill our sensory table with some rice and digging/dumping tools and let them go to town. We have a Florida room/sun porch that is perfect for these types of activities because when the weather is nice we can enjoy it without being directly in the sun…and if they get rice all over the floor (which let’s face it, happened) it is pretty easy to sweep up.

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They had a ball and it kept them busy for a while. I have to say they did pretty good with trying to keep the rice in the table. By the second day of rice play they seemed to have learned the rules a little better and tried really hard to keep it in the table. Obviously they are 1 1/2 years old so the rice did not stay only in the table, but it was super easy to sweep up so I really didn’t mind.

I would say it was a success…sometimes the simple things are the most fun!

I will leave you with a picture of the aftermath…not too terrible I guess, although I am sure I will be finding random rice for days!

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PS. I am linking up for this Tuesday Talk.

Polka-Dotty Place

Monday, September 14, 2015

Weekending: Snotty Noses and Cool Weather

 

This past weekend was full of snotty noses and cool weather…one of which I love a ton!
Unfortunately those two things don’t always work together…

Poor little Ellie woke up last Thursday with a snotty nose and pretty much looked more pathetic then I have seen her in a while…poor girl!

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She slowly developed a slight fever, so the majority of the weekend was spent cuddled on the couch, watching movies and football.  This worked out pretty good because Saturday it was gray and raining for pretty much the entire day here. 

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I hate when she is sick and not feeling well, but I have to admit I love snuggling with her when she will let me!

By Sunday we were ready to get out of the house…I can lounge with the best of them but I get stir crazy pretty easy and usually have to get out of the house for a bit every single day.  We didn’t really leave our house or do much of anything Friday and Saturday so I was going a little crazy by the time Sunday hit.  Luckily the weather was BEAUTIFUL…crisp, clear fall air…my favorite kind ever.  We packed up the family, including Reggie (the dog), threw on sweatshirts and headed to the local college to enjoy the weather and take a walk.

Ellie still wasn’t feeling 100% but by this point she needed to blow the stink off and get some fresh air too , so she enjoyed the trip.

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This kid is obsessed with rocks, leaves, dirt…anything she can get her little hands on outside. We let her out to walk and stretch her legs for a bit in this empty parking lot and she took to chasing and grabbing all of the random blowing leaves she could get.  It was pretty cute.

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We rounded out the weekend with lunch from Chipotle…always amazing! 

I do have to tell you I had no idea they had a kids meal and it is pretty kick butt! I took this terrible picture of the leftovers of the kids meal…but you get the idea, and how cute is the little plate thing!?! 

You get a ton for $3.75: a cheese quesadilla, two sides (rice and beans, or salsa) and either a side of fruit or kids chips….and a drink!!! I feel like that is an amazing deal, right!?!?!

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Anyway, hope you all had a great weekend!

 

I am linking up with Biana and Meghan.

Weekending

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Alison

 

I have tried to write this post a couple of times now, but keep deleting what I have and then starting over and then wondering how/if I should go about saying what I want to say. In the end I feel like I cannot be true to this blog if I don’t write about this…it is all I can think about and has changed the person I am so much that to not write about it would almost be lying to you.

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Recently one of our dear friends, Alison, passed away after a 5 month hard fought battle with cancer. She leaves behind a wonderful husband, a 10 month old son and many friends and family members. I won’t go into too much detail about everything because I want to respect her family and don’t feel like it is my place to just put stuff out there…however, I need to talk about how this has changed me. I need to ask for thoughtful prayers and positive thoughts and vibes for her family. I only had the privilege of knowing Alison for about three years so the real prayers and support go to her husband, family and friends that don’t know life without her until now.  I can’t speak for them, I can only speak for myself and so this is how she changed my life.

When someone passes away at a young age it is so devastating and heart breaking, there is really no other way to describe it. Alison, specifically, was literally the most kind and sweetest person I have ever met.  She had such a way about her that made everyone feel like her dear friend.  She cared so much about every single person she ever came across…not just pretended she cared, she actually cared. That is rare…and in her passing it has gotten me thinking.  Thinking about what I can do to continue her kindness…thinking about how she made others feel and how I want to make others feel that way too.

It sucks that sometimes the only way we are woken up to parts of life is thru loss…I guess that is just how life works. I want to be kinder because Alison showed how great that gift is.  I want to make people feel loved because she loved so deeply. I want to really listen to every lyric and note in every single song, because she loved music and found such joy and comfort in every part of it, and I used to be like that but life got in the way…her love for music has reminded me of my love for music.

I honestly know there is not one single thing I can say or tell myself or others that will make any of this seem to make sense.  We lost a dear, sweet person waaaaaay too early but I guess I find comfort in knowing that I can somehow take what she modeled in her life and move forward trying to spread a little bit of Alison on the daily.

I looked at her Pinterest after she passed away because I just had a feeling she  loved pinning quotes. I was right, and so I will leave you with several of her pinned quotes which simply shows the kind of person we will miss and the kind of person we can all strive to be a little bit more like.

Quote

the little things

be kind.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tuesday Talk:Road Trip

Hello, hello, hello… I still cannot believe it is already August…this summer has flown by!!  Like I said yesterday, we have been really trying to take advantage of these beautiful days when the humidity is low (thank the good, good Lord for those days…and all days, of course…but especially the low humidity days!) Parks, parks and more parks is where it is at right now.  We have been to the pool a handful of times this year, but in all honesty it just isn’t worth the prep work at this age.  By the time I get myself ready and Ellie ready and pack up all the junk we need to make the day successful we are both exhausted before we even get there…and then we get in the pool and about 25 minutes later little miss is ready to get out, tired from the sun and we head home…one hour of prep work for 20 minutes…don’t get me wrong, I have done this plenty this summer and I love the joy she has from getting in the water so the sacrifice of one hour to get our junk in order is usually worth it…but I’m just saying it is not number one on our list of things to do…anyone else hear me on this. And I only have one kid….bless you mother’s out there with two, three or more!!!!!!!

Speaking of getting our junk in order, this week we are gearing up for a mini vacation up to Lake Ontario and I couldn’t be more excited.  We love visiting up there…the lake, the little cottages, the lifestyle…all so relaxing.  I have been going there every summer forever now and Joe has been up there a couple of times.  Last year was Ellie’s first trip and it was so much fun, but this year is a complete different ballgame.  She can walk and she can run, and she is into everything…which means not quite as relaxing as the many times before for us, but way more rewarding and fun!

Here is a picture of her from last year with my mom…what a chunk!!! (obviously i am talking about ellie here, NOT my mom!)

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And a few more, because she is just so cute I want to pinch those cheeks!!!!!

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Ok, ok…so getting back to gathering our junk for this trip…

On this fine Tuesday I bring to you a few random things that I am hoping to add to our belongings to make the trip a little easier on all of us:

1// Magna-Doodle: Ellie loves to color and draw, but she loves to do this while carrying around a notebook and marker which makes this momma nervous for artwork on the walls or furniture. One of our friends had this and Ellie fell in love.  I thought it would be perfect for the car: easy and no mess at all.

2// Crayola Color Wonder: This goes along with what I said above…the kid loves to color.  This product is amazing.  It is special coloring pages that have to be used with the color wonder markers…the cool thing is that the markers appear clear until you use them on the special paper: meaning no mess if she draws all over herself or the walls!!!  Although this won’t be as easy as the magna doodle in the car, I still want to take this along to offer an alternative and for when we actually get up to the lake for something fun to do.

3//Portable DVD Player: I am hoping we can get our hands on one of these before the trip because I am sure it will help the ride go so much smoother…

4// Snacks, snack and more snacks:  Do I even need to explain this one or use a picture?!?! Toddlers and adults, no matter what age, snacks make a road trip so much better!!!

 

Any other ideas you may have for an 18 month old in the car for 6 hours, which I realize is not that terribly long, but still…We do plan on leaving pretty early in the morning so that she will just sleep most of the way up, but the way back will be during her prime play time hours so we could use all the help we can get!!!

Have a great Tuesday, oh and if you want to check out some other great blogs I am linking up below.  

 

Polka-Dotty Place