Dear Addison,

My sweet sweet girl.  My sweet SEVEN year old!  No way.  I can’t believe you just turned seven.  I think I’m in denial.  Serious denial.  But as hard as it is for me to see you growing up entirely too quickly, I have to say that I just love the stage you are in right now Addie.  LOVE it!

Yes, as a toddler and young child you kept things interesting.  To say the least.  :)  And we loved our stubborn, moody, curly headed firecracker to pieces.  But oh how you’ve changed!

You are such a little delight these days.  Happy all the time!  And such a little pleaser.  You love to make your mom and dad happy.  You love to make Ellie happy.  You love to make your teacher and friends happy.  You find so much joy in doing what’s right and making other people feel good.  Your smile is simply contagious.  I get so excited to pick you up from school each day Addie because you run into my arms with the biggest smile on your face.  Pure joy!  And I know you will outgrow this at some point, so I soak it up and squeeze you tight every day and remember how lucky I am to have you in my life.

You are smart Addison.  So so smart.  While we often hear how much you look like your mommy (and I love that!) you clearly got your daddy’s intellect.  :)  Sure you love to be creative and play like your mom and sister, but you are a problem solver and critical thinker at heart.  You love learning and are always asking questions.  You are also an amazing listener.  You pay such close attention to what is going on around you and you retain information so well.  You always amaze us with the things you remember and understand at such a young age.  You are also a hard worker Addison and I hope you never lose that quality.  It is one of my favorite things about you.  You never give up and you always give everything your full attention and do your very best.  You will go so far in life with your kindness and ability to work hard.  You are a teacher’s dream with your work ethic and stellar behavior and you have had an amazing year in first grade.  

While your dad has big dreams for you – Harvard with multiple medical degrees or maybe a nuclear scientist or perhaps someone who saves the world by solving all of our environmental problems – you and I know what direction you are really heading… FASHION!

You were born with a love for clothes and fashion and I have no clue where it came from.  :)  You have so much fun putting together different outfits and you have loved doing this since you were old enough to talk.  I have to say that so many times you walk in dressed for school and I think WOW.  Now that is cute!  And I never would have thought of putting that top with that skirt and those leggings.  It’s a true talent of yours.  I’m to a place now where I seriously go to you for advice.  Should I wear these shoes or these shoes?  Which earrings look best with this dress?  You have impeccable taste and I will not be shocked at all when the day comes that you own your own fashion line.  I’m sure you’ll throw in a few outfits that aren’t “itchy” just to please your sister.  :)

Speaking of Ellie, you are the best little sister Addison.  The other day El lost one of her favorite toys and was so worried about it.  You told her “don’t worry Ellie.  If you can’t find it I will give you all my money so you can buy a new one.”  Your grandma overheard this conversation and got a lump in her throat.  We all know how hard you work to earn money and how hard it is for you to spend it!  But you would do anything for your sister.  She is your best friend and you love her and look up to her so much.  

We always talk about how lucky you are to be a little sister AND a big sister.  Ellie isn’t the only one who adores you!  You have a little shadow who follows you around 24/7.  We hear “where’s my Addie?”  over and over every day.  Your little brother wants to do whatever you are doing and while I know this is sometimes hard for you (he doesn’t quite understand that toys aren’t always meant to be knocked down and demolished) you handle it so well and are such a good little buddy to him.  You get so excited when he learns new words and does well with his speech.  You are like a mini therapist helping him learn.  You always come running in to me “mom!  guess what Kole just said!” and we cheer and do a happy dance and Kole feels like the king of the world.  :)

You have a special relationship with your daddy.  The two of you have so much fun together camping and joking around.  You asked for a rubix cube this year for your birthday of all things!  Flashback to my childhood!  And I never liked those but it is so YOU!  You and your dad have had a blast figuring it out and then messing it up so that you can figure it out again.  Your dad always tells me that he loves that he “gets” you.  You two are alike in so many ways.  Both determined, strong willed, competitive, hard working and up for a challenge.  Both perfectionists.  El and I are a little more in the clouds while you and your daddy always have your feet planted firmly in reality.  We help you two enjoy the journey and you and your dad keep us from running into major disasters.  :)  We all help even each other out.    
Even though your personality is a mini daddy you have always been such a mamma’s girl and the two of us get along famously.  You love to organize!  We both get so excited about neatness and order.  The other day you asked me if I would help you straighten up your clothes drawers because you love it when they are nice and neat.  My heart skipped a beat!  :)  You love to cuddle and one of your favorite things is when we can have what you call “mommy Addie time” and hang out just the two of us.  It’s one of my favorite things too.  

You are such a special little girl Addison.  Every night your daddy and I still tuck you in bed and follow the same routine we started when you were a toddler.  We kiss you and then you wipe our kisses off.  Then we say “hey you wiped off our kisses!”  Then we laugh and we each kiss you again and whisper “you make me melt.”

You do make us melt Addison.  Not a day goes by that your dad and I don’t comment on what an amazing little person you are and how lucky we are to have you for a daughter.  Your sweet little personality brings so much love and happiness into our home.  I can’t imagine my life without you baby girl.  Love you so so much.

xoxo,

Mom

p.s.  Stop wiggling that loose front tooth!  You have grown up enough for your mom to handle at the moment.  :)

Fun decor (model home)

Do you love to go through model homes as much as I do?  Every time new home developments are going up I love to take a walk through the model homes.  The models are always decked with so many beautiful moldings and furniture.  Yes – they are totally staged and far from what “home” really looks like.  And they are usually full of way too many silk plants and overly themed bedrooms, but still.  So fun to get decorating ideas that you can tweak and apply in your real home.  I went through some model homes recently and thought I’d share a few pretty pics I snapped with my IPhone.  
Loved this ceiling.  

I also loved this display shelf.  Minus one or two silk plants.  :)

How cool are those floors!?

I thought this was a fun idea for a fireplace mantel – just a painting and two pictures on the right side.  The painting isn’t really speaking to me, but I love the simplicity of this.

LOVE this formal dining room.  Aren’t those lights cool?  It made me want to add a brick wall to mine.
But I chickened out.  :)  My sister has a brick wall in her formal dining room that she and her husband put up and it is gorgeous too.  
I do believe I will.  :)

Navy is always fun.  

I especially liked the print on these chairs.

These stairs were gorgeous!  Fun sitting area – you know – if you get tired half way up.  
There’s even a place for the dog to take a breather.  
This is such an easy arrangement for a picture gallery.  Saving it for future inspiration.  

The right side of this media built-in was a bench seat.  I don’t know how much that would get used in our house – everyone wants to be facing the TV.  :)  But it sure looks pretty!  Plus you all know I can’t resist anything that has a few wide planks in the background.

Want to see the whole room?  It was my favorite!
Ahhhhh.  LOVE this!  Love all of the crisp white with pretty blue accents and dark furniture.  And I especially love that coffee table!  It’s huge!  My kids would be camped all over that thing with every toy  imaginable so fast my head would spin.  It wouldn’t be a coffee table in our house.  It would be a fort and a boat and a barbie party pad.  :)  
Like I said, model homes may be a bit staged, unrealistic, and a little too perfect, but they are also full of fun inspiration!  Thanks for taking the tour with me.  :)
Happy Thursday friends!

Everything and Nothing

Well hello all!  Sharing a few pics from the past few days.  Kenny took the girls camping over the weekend and the girls were worried that I would feel lonely.
So they filled half of my bed with their “friends” to keep me company.  Lucky me.  :)  They made me promise to look after them all and keep them in my bed so I slept among stuffed dogs, monkeys, and of course – several pandas.  
Speaking of … when I saw this shirt at Gap I knew a certain someone had to have it.  :)

Kole loves to have complete access to the girls stuff when they’re gone.  The monkey backpack works for school, but when he’s home his real favorite is this old pink backpack of Ad’s.  I always smile when he puts it on and starts marching around the house.  It’s almost as big as he is.

He’s hiding from me in this picture.  I love it.  :)  This has got to be one of my favorite things about toddlers – when they close and cover their eyes and think you can’t see them anymore.  It just never gets old to me.    
  

When Kole wasn’t messing with the girls things he started a new little trick.  Putting all of his toys (along with a few towels and blankets) into one huge pile on the playroom couch.  I can only handle so many messes like this one before my skin begins to itch.  :)  So after a while I took him in the backyard for one of my favorite toddler activities.  If you have a toddler, take notes…

Get a bucket and a paint brush.  Add a little water to the bucket and teach your little one how to “paint” the wall.  This is my favorite way to occupy a toddler in the summer time.  They love it.  And by the time the wall is finished the water has started drying so it’s time to start again!  I told him what a great painter he was and thank you so much for all of the help.  He was in heaven and I was able to get the dishes done and watch him from the kitchen window.  Score for both of us.  

My girls used to do this for hours when they were little too.  :)
Of course a little organizing was in order.  The kids’ bathroom cupboards were getting cluttered again.
 So I cleaned them. 

I wish I could show you some “after” pics of my scrapbook space but I’m afraid I went a bit crazy and only made the mess in that room even bigger.  :)  It always gets worse before it gets better, right!?

We met friends at the park tonight for dinner and I brought a fruit salad and my favorite fruit dip.  I’ve shared this before, but thought I’d post it again in case anyone missed it.  Because if you missed it and haven’t tried it yet, well, I just think that’s a true tragedy.  It is GOOD.

Whip together:
8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
7 oz. jar of marshmallow creme
2 teaspoons of Maraschino Cherry juice

Perfect for summer BBQ’s!  Love this time of year.
K.  That was a bit of a random post!  Everything and nothing.  Works for me. 
:)

Tackling this weekend…

Could my so called “office” be any messier?  Yup – those are Christmas pictures still up.  Yup – that’s wrapping paper and random organizers all over the floor blocking the door way.  Yup – those are piles of kids’ school work and art work and pictures and scrapbook supplies and albums and projects (started and then forgotten) and office supplies and ribbon and a Victoria Secret bag (huh?) and dolls and puzzles and who knows what else all over my desk.

This space has been the most neglected area of my house and a total catch all for any and everything lately.  This weekend my goal is to dive in and pack up the scrapbook room!  Major purging is in order.  I want things cleaned out and packed in an organized way so that it’s easier to move it all into my new office space.  Kenny and the girls have fun plans on Saturday so my fingers are crossed that I can stay home and get it done!  

I’m sure my little monkey will be a huge help as always.  

:)
Enjoy your weekend!