Hadley is FOUR!

Hadley turned FOUR years old yesterday, and we had the best time celebrating her over the weekend!! On Saturday, I took Hadley for her birthday trip to Barnes & Noble. She loved every minute of this!

Zupa's recently opened up a location right by our house, so we decided to go there on Saturday evening for dinner for the first time. We liked it! Then we went to Cold Stone for dessert b/c nothing says birthday weekend like Cold Stone!

And then we put this girl to bed for the last time as a three year old!!! I love this picture of her! Snuggled up on her "H pillow" & cuddling with her beloved Bear & Smitten.


And Sunday was the big day!!! We started off the day with brthday donuts. But almost as exciting as birthday donuts was the fact that Hadley was promoted to two vitamins/day! We get the girls princess gummy vitamins, and the directions say to take one per day or two per day for ages 4 & up....Hadley has been waiting & waiting to get 2 vitamins like Shelby, and the day finally came!!

Also, I feel like it is important to note why my children are already fully dressed complete with hair bows for a Saturday morning breakfast. ;)  There used to be a time where we strolled into the donut shop in PJs, but Hadley now likes to get dressed as soon as her feet hit the floor in the morning. Shelby would ordinarily still be in PJs though except for the fact that she WOKE UP AT 4:15 IN THE MORNING b/c she was too excited to sleep since it was Hadley's birthday. I guess when you're up at 4:15, you've got plenty of time to get dressed before breakfast. ;)  Thankfully Shelby entertained herself quietly in her room until the rest of the family woke up. :)

After Hadley's yummy birthday breakfast, we opened up presents!! Hadley was so funny all week whenever she received a birthday card of package in the mail, she insisted upon waiting until her actual birthday to open them. Even on Saturday when I took her to Barnes & Noble and got her a cupcake, she said we needed to take it home & save it for her birthday, ha! All of that to say, she had a lot to open on her birthday between Mommy & Daddy's gifts and everything she'd received in the mail that week.

After presents & an early lunch, we headed to Chuck E. Cheese for some birthday fun! Leading up to Hadley's birthday, we kept asking her what special thing she wanted us to do on her birthday. She narrowed it down to Build A Bear or Chuck E. Cheese, but ultimately decided on Chuck E. Cheese. We kept trying to convince her to do Build A Bear b/c we knew that would be more fun for her, but it was to no avail. Hadley loves the idea of Chuck E. Cheese, but she doesn't really enjoy the games. But she loves the necklace & ring she got with her tickets, so she was happy in the end!

 {You can see the girls' faces on the screen above their ride..Hadley's face says it all!}

{This was a 100% fake smile, I have no idea why but even the mini carousel caused her anxiety at Chuck E. Cheese. I literally pulled her off mid-ride b/c she was almost in tears 2 seconds after this picture was taken.}

{All smiles with her new jewelry from Chuck E. Cheese!}

After Chuck E. Cheese, we came home for Brady to nap & got started on Hadley's birthday cupcakes! The birthday girl requested chocolate cupcakes with blue icing & blue sprinkles. Baking is the girl's thing, so she loved helping to make them!

For Hadley's birthday dinner, she requested all of her favorite dinner foods: steak, corn on the cob, & Kraft macaroni and cheese. After dinner we let the girls ride their scooters to the park b/c it was a gorgeous evening. I didn't get any pictures, but it was the perfect end to our weekend! We had so much fun being together this weekend & celebrating our four year old!!!

Two other things that I want to remember about Hadley's fourth birthday--whenever anyone said "Happy Birthday" to her, she would say "Happy Birthday" back to them. ;)  And when I was tucking Hadley in for bed on the night of her birthday, I said: "Happy Birthday, Hadley. I'm so thankful God gave you to us." She grabbed my cheeks after I said that, and in the sweetest, most sincere voice replied: "And I'm so glad we're all alive."


Three Things

A blog I follow (I can't remember which one now!!) did a "Three Things" post a while back where she shared three things happening with each person in her family lately, and I thought it was so fun...so here we go--three things about each Smith!

First up, Shelby-girl!

1. Shelby is the epitome of a morning person. She is always the first one to wake up in our house, and she literally wakes up singing some days. I've never met a person who wakes up as happy as she does!

2. Shelby's class was recently hosting Morning Ceremony for their school, and Shelby was nominated to read a sentence she wrote aloud in front of the entire school. Below is a video of her speaking, I love how excited she was after she finished!!!

3. Shelby is always, always, always reading or writing. Below is a poem she wrote back in February & a song that she wrote yesterday.

And as a side note, did you see that joke book in Shelby's hands in the picture above? Her school was hosting a book swap this week for the students, and they were also collecting books to take to kids at St. Jude's Children's Ranch. All on her own, Shelby told us she wanted to donate her joke book b/c she thought the jokes might cheer up the kids who were sick.

Next is Hadley!!

1. Hadley loves anything & everything blue b/c her eyes are blue. Blue is a big deal to her. She has always referred to Derek as her "blue eye BFF," and she was very excited when Brady was born with blue eyes. We were admittedly a bit nervous when his eyes started to turn hazel a couple months ago, but thankfully she still loves him despite his eye color! ;)

2. Hadley loves the dirt. One of the dads of a little boy in Shelby's class who we often see at drop-off/pick-up calls Hadley "dirt princess."

3. Hadley is the best "middle" kid ever. She adores being Shelby's little sister & Brady's big sister. She fulfills both roles beautifully. If you ask her what she wants for treat after dinner, her response will usually be: "Shelby, what are you having?" She is the classic little sister & wants to do whatever her big sister does, and she loves to take care Brady and help me with him any chance she gets.

{I feel like this picture needs an explanation ;)  Hadley was finishing up her lunch & Brady crawled over to her chair. She was so happy to have him close to her while she ate, she was talking & singing to him all throughout her meal. Such a good big sis!!}

{Hadley loves when Shelby reads to her!}


1. Brady's favorite song is Itsy Bitsy Spider. He can be hungry, tired, or mad...but if you start singing the Itsy Bitsy Spider, all is right in the world again!

2. Brady is starting to pull up more & more, so we brought out the music table him the other day! He is really enjoying it.

And today he figured out how to pull up to standing while playing on the music table!

3. I got the girls a bunch of cute new spring clothes a while back...evidence pictured below.

But I put off buying anything new for Brady b/c he was kind of in between sizes & I didn't know when exactly it would warm up here. Then this happened:

Poor Brady was sporting winter jammies in March that were way too small, and as if that wasn't bad enough then his toe had to pop through! Ha! Thankfully, his new PJs were already on the way!


1. Derek is our family's little travel agent. He is always busy scheming & planning adventures for us! The most recent trips he's been working on are reserving a houseboat for us over Labor Day weekend & a trip to the Grand Canyon over Thanksgiving!

2. I still need to get our last house tour post up with pics of the exterior! Derek has been hard at work lately tackling outdoor projects. He's been working on our garden, figuring out how to get rid of a stump in our backyard (he has watched countless YouTube videos on the best way to do this, ha!), and he replaced one of Shelby's window screens for me--yay!! The window screen has been driving me crazy ever since we moved in. Shelby's three bedroom windows are on the front of the house, and the middle window was missing a screen. So not only was it making her room waaaay hotter, but it was a total eyesore too. Our property manager didn't think it was "necessary" to replace, and we could have paid someone to do it...but Derek decided he wanted to buy an extension ladder & a screen kit to do himself. I'm so thrilled this project is done!!

3. Derek is itching to take the girls fishing, so he's been adding fishing stuff to my Amazon cart lately. Hopefully they'll get to go fishing soon!

And last, but not least, ME!
1. Brady has recently dropped down to two naps & is sleeping through the night some nights. While this is super exciting, it has been a bit of an uncomfortable adjustment for me. Sleeping through the night meant dropping a nighttime feeding, and dropping a nap meant dropping a mid-day nursing session. My body has just taken a bit longer to adjust than I would have liked!

2. I feel like an old lady b/c I have started to complain about my back hurting! ;)  I wear Brady a lot, but I've never once minded it. Well, a couple weeks ago, we had a busy Saturday where we had a fun run/walk at Shelby's school in the morning & then we explored Lake Mead in the afternoon...between those two activities on one day, it was a lot of walking while baby-wearing. I didn't feel it at the time, but the next morning I woke up with a bit of a sore back. It probably would have been fine if I just let it rest for a day or two, but I wear Brady every single day. So my back never got the chance to recover. So now every day when I put him on, I feel every ounce of his little body! Hopefully he'll decide to start tolerating the stroller a bit more with age so I don't have to wear him quite as often. But the other part of me is okay with wearing him for as long as he wants me to, he's our baby!!!!! And I know this phase will be over all too soon & he'll be running around after his big sisters...and then I'll be longing for the days when he was so content to be in the carrier!

3. I'm trying to put myself out there more to make new friends lately! Since Brady was born so soon after we moved here coupled with the fact that there is no military presence in our community, making friends has been a bit of a challenge for me. I've made plenty of friends, but no real good friends yet. Hadley & I have a playdate with a new friend scheduled for next week, fingers crossed it goes well for both of us! ;)


That's What She Said

Conversation over breakfast one morning before school:
Shelby: Mama, what do you predict you're going to do with Hadley today while I'm at school?
Me: Well, when we get home from dropping you off, we have to do the dishes & laundry. Then when Brady takes his nap, we'll probably read & play for a little while. Then we'll go to storytime at the library.
Hadley: BOOM! That's a great plan, Mama!

We were outside riding scooters after school one day while Brady was napping, and Shelby said to me: "The sky is the limit when you have two scooter-riding kids!"

Conversation over lunch one afternoon:
Hadley: Do you remember when to Elyse's birthday party and my class had a field trip to the museum?
Me: Yes, I remember.
Hadley: Those were some good days, weren't they?

Shelby: I feel like February is the runt of all the months.

We were at a park one day & saw a bunch of Canadian geese. One of them had one leg propped up on the other {kind of like you might see a flamingo do} & Hadley said: "I think he must be doing yoga or something." This is one of those comments that neither Derek nor I will probably ever forget. Hadley learned a little bit of yoga in preschool one day, which explains how our 3 year old knows about yoga--because she certainly didn't learn it from us, ha! I love that she learned yoga in preschool--the Y is keeping her well-rounded! :)  Here she is demonstrating the two poses she learned:

{Hadley's "mountain" pose}

{Hadley's "tree" pose}


Weekend Recap: Hoover Dam + Swimming

On Saturday morning, we decided to go visit Hoover Dam for the first time! It was much more interesting & fun than I would have expected! I really enjoyed it. And since the new Chick-fil-a was on the way there, we of course had to stop off for breakfast!

Our weather over the weekend was picture perfect, temps in the low 80s & not a cloud in the sky! The girls were itching to swim, so we turned on the pool heater after we got home from Hoover Dam & we spent most of Saturday & Sunday afternoon poolside! When we were house-hunting last Spring, whether a not a house had a pool was a total non-issue for us. I didn't really care one way or another if we had a pool in our backyard or simply had access to a neighborhood or community pool. Fast forward to this past weekend, and I said to Derek: "I think we should be a pool family forevermore." I absolutely love having our own pool. We have made so many memories in this pool already! We have enjoyed it so, so much! I have a feeling by the time we leave this house, these kids are going to be little fish!

{not happy that Mama woke him up from his nap!} 

It was such a fun weekend with my people! Next weekend, we'll be celebrating our FOUR YEAR OLD!!!