New Year's Resolution: Word of the Month

in , by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 4:30 AM
Image result for new years resolution meme

Anyone else?! I haven't really been someone to make New Year's Resolutions in the past or at least not ones that I am serious enough about to actually make some changes.

This year, instead of making ONE resolution to stick with all year, I decided to have a "Word of the Month."  My hope is that I am able to really select something that is pertinent for that time of the year and directed towards something that really needs worked on that month.

January was "Junk Free January."
I have to say that I did a pretty good job at sticking with it.  My goal was to clean out and organize all of our junk drawers and to eat less junk.  Since moving into our house, there were a couple like 6 or 7 drawers, throughout out house, that have held random things.  I'll admit, the thing that I would shove in the most random drawers, was money.  Like one dollar bills, fives, tens, and some days you'd even get lucky and find a twenty that I "stored" there instead of leaving it on the counter.  It drove Gavin nutty.  I'm happy to report that all of the drawers are organized and the money has been collected.

We have done a really good job in the eating department as well and with the help of some cookbooks, we're having healthy suppers and leftovers most days.  I'll share more on those cookbooks and recipes in a few days.

I didn't have a ton of pictures of my "junk free" eating.  We have a "healthy snack" drawer in our fridge that has fruit, veggies, yogurt, and cheese for the kids, and they each get to pick one before bed.  It didn't take them long to figure out how to get that drawer open.

My goal for this coming month is "Finance February."
While Gavin and I have figured out our budget, it isn't overly detailed or specific.  We simply spend less than we are bringing in.  We pay our bills, set aside some into our savings, and then, well, the rest is just kind of there.  My goal is to really limit my online shopping, meal plan for groceries and what I call "Walmart Items", and I'm going to force myself to actually track what I spend where.  I know it will be eye opening.  I promise to report back at the end of February when I share out my March goal.

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Did you make a New Year's Resolution?  I'd love to hear what it was and if you're still at it!  Leave me a comment!

Snow Day #3--Treyton's Lunch Pick

by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 5:05 PM
Today marks our 6th snow day of the year....6 days in the last two weeks to be exact.  When my alarm went off this morning, the my watch said -25 and the real feel was -56.!

This is at 2:30pm and I'm fairly certain we are only getting colder from here on out for the day.

Needless to say, we haven't left the house.  Our dog, who loves the snow, has peed six inches from the door all day, and we are going stir crazy!  #gross

I asked Treyton what he wanted for lunch around 11am.  My kids had already had breakfast and two snacks and were already showing signs they were getting hangry.  He immediately responded with pizza and pears! Now isn't that quite the combination!

Flatbread Pizza
All three of our kiddos love pizza and feel like I am able to keep it relatively healthy.  I should also mention that they all also LOVE meat.   You can do lots of different combinations with this but this is what I had on hand today.

--Flatbreads (We also use tortillas!)
--Pizza or any red sauce
--Mozzarella Cheese

Step 1
Preheat your over to 375 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Brown your hamburger.

Step 2
Place flatbreads on cookie sheet and cover in pizza sauce.  Add your toppings.  We added hamburger and cheese.  When Gavin is home, we add onions, peppers, mushrooms, and pepperoni.

He loves to add and eat the cheese!

Step 3
Pop in the oven until the cheese is lightly browned!

So easy!  So quick!

Not terribly unhealthy!

Taylor approved!

And Trnylee approved!  (Any time I tell her to smile, she plays peek-a-boo!)

Meet Treyton!

in , by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 4:30 AM
Meet Treyton Lee

This boy!  He is the truest definition of karma!  He is tenderhearted, emotional, and extremely stubborn.  He never stops moving...or talking and can't wait to go to school.

  While he idolizes his daddy, he loves his Mom through and through.  Although lately, he tells me I have hurt his feelings or made him sad when he gets told no.  Sorry, buddy!

He loves his sisters big time and is protective of them, but we are working hard on being gentle.  Especially when they are getting into his things now that they are mobile.

He is also fiercely independent--when he wants to be--and can be a smidgen whiny when things get challenging.

He is 110% boy and loves to dig and play in the dirt but doesn't love to stay dirty.

While Treyton is Papa's pride and joy, the feeling is mutual.  

This kid LOVES the farm and wants to grow up and be just like his dad.

Animals are his jam.  His papa even raised two piglets for him.  Meet Wilbur!  Charlotte was hiding somewhere even though they were tame to the point they crawled up on my dad's lap.

We recently got a puppy, who is now a small horse, and he isn't overly in love with her.  She wants nothing more than to be close to him and sleep with him but she also jumps on him, nibbles on him, and some times gets so excited that she knocks him over.

He went as a "worker" for Halloween.  This is his daily attire currently as well.
--Work Pants (Just like Dad!)
--A short sleeved shirt over top of a long black sleeve shirt. (Just like Dad!)
-Muck boots (Just like Dad!)
--Carhardt Hat on top of a "work hat" (Just like Dad!)
--Tool belt

You can find him with a digger or shovel in hand almost 24-7.  Yes, he takes one to bed with him!

I thought it would be fun to ask him some questions as well!  He had me laughing so hard!
1. What is something mommy always says to you? No {sad but true---in a phase of testing allll.the.boundaries!}
2. What makes you happy? Tough trucks and big diggers
3. What makes you sad? When daddy leaves without me
4. What makes you laugh? Being chased
5. How old are you? Three
6. How old is Mommy? Five
7. How old is Daddy? Six
8. What is your favorite thing to do? Play with diggers
9. Who is your best friend? {big smile} Danica, Garrett, and Oakley
10. What do you want to be when you grow up? Dad and work at job sites with Dad
11. What are you really good at? Driving diggers
12. What are you not very good at? I don't know what is hard for me.  {Going to bed, Buddy, that's what's hard for you!}
13. What did you do today? Walk around (Lol)
14. What is your favorite food? Jelly sandwiches and waffles
15. What is your favorite song? Old McDonald Had a Digger
16. What do you want for your birthday this year? A roller skid loader
17. What is your favorite animal? Cows
18. What is love? Hugs and kisses
19. What does daddy do for work? Builds houses and farms
20. Where do you live? In this house {touche}
21. Where is your favorite place to go? The Shop

Snow Day--Healthy Lunch

in , by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 2:19 PM
If you're local, I hope that you are staying warm--and staying sane if you have kids home from school!  All the praise hands to stay at home mamas during the winter months.

Take a look at the low for Wednesday around here and then the high for Saturday and Sunday.
That's quite the temp difference but not surprising for an Iowa winter.

Ok!  Onto a common lunch around here!  I really strive to make meals for my family from fresh ingredients instead of from the box.  Yes, I feed my kids Mac-n-Cheese once in a while but its my goal to get them fruits and veggies in as many meals as possible.

Today's lunch was super fast and super easy!  

Disclaimer--I probably don't use the correct utensils, use the correct terminology, and certainly don't know the least about dishing up meals.  I'm simply here to share my passion of healthy, kid (and husband) friendly meals.

Chicken Sausage with Veggies
--Chicken Sausage
--Brown Rice
--1 Zucchini
--1 Yellow Squash
--Olive Oil
--Minced Garlic
--Mrs. Dash

Step 1
Slice your zucchini, squash, and chicken sausage.  I use the al fresco brand and find it in HyVee's Health Market.

Step 2
In a pan over medium heat, place a tablespoon of olive oil and a some minced garlic.  Add your chicken sausage and veggies and season with Mrs. Dash to your liking.

 Step 3
You can obviously make brown rice any way you would like.  I really like these steamables when I am running short on time and have hangry children.  I popped this in the microwave for 3 minutes once I got everything else started.

I served served the sausage and veggies over the brown rice for Gavin and myself.

I try to keep things separated for my kids as I find they will at least eat an entire serving of something.  Treyton calls this meal "Cinni and Hotdogs" and typically eats all of the sausage, fruit, and has to eat at least three bites of veggies.

I strongly believe that we shouldn't force our kids to finish their plates as I feel that is a bad eating habit and they will eat when they are hungry..  However, he doesn't get any snacks after supper if he doesn't eat well.  We simply leave his plate at his spot and he almost always goes back and eats it at some point before bed.  This is the same for lunch.  We also enforce the "No Thank You Bite" rule.  We won't make him eat things that he doesn't like but he must take a "No Thank You Bite" so that he at least tries everything on his plate.

Let me know if you make something similar or try this out!

Meet Gavin

in , by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 4:30 AM
This post will likely be fairly short so that I don't get banned from this blog before I really get back into it!

Meet Gavin!

He's owner of his construction company and does a lot of the behind the scenes work these days.  He's constantly on his phone even though it sometimes seems he doesn't ever answer it.  Gavin is definitely the risk taker of the two of us and sometimes his ideas make me just a smidgen anxious.

He is our kiddos' favorite person even though I like to remind them often that I'm the one that keeps them fed, bathed, and clothed.  :-) He simply walks in the room and they all go running to him.  Gavin is easily Treyton's daily hero, and he will only wear and do things that daddy wears or does. #eyeroll

Gavin recently really got involved with my family's farm.  As if he needed another iron in the fire, he is now making a lot of decisions and doing a lot of the work.  The kiddos and I spend a lot of time in my car during planting and harvest seasons to take him food, see him for a couple minutes a day, and possibly snag a ride with him in the tractors or combine.

He is the first one to remind me to live each day in the moment and not to worry about the future.

While all of our kiddos really enjoy snuggles from their Dad, Trynlee loves being held and giving him hugs the most.

While I often give him a hard time that I have to hold down the fort, he is fully capable of doing it all on his own.  I just might come home to a sink full of dishes and a pile of laundry. :-)

He is the brains behind a lot of our little space along the highway.  While his ideas are often far more than what I ever feel is needed, they always turn out great.  It is painful for him to not be outside doing something.


When we can steal him away from the golf course in his free time, he's generally a good sport about my vacation ideas with three small children. #mostofthetime

And here we are!  4.5 years into our marriage, 10 years together, and 3 kiddos later!

Weekend Recap!

in , by Gavin and Kylie Plus 4, 4:30 AM
One: Playing Outside
Gavin looked at our weekly forecast on Friday night, and we will likely not see a positive temperature for an entire week starting on Monday.  Folks, the highs don't break zero for a week!  On Wednesday, they are talking the wind chills could possibly be -50 degrees.  We took full advantage and got outside when we could.  It was -6 when I took this picture which I'm afraid will feel like a heat wave in a couple of days.

Two: Hot Yoga
We had a new yoga place open up in town a few months ago and it has totally changed my attitude on yoga.  I really enjoy an intense workout, and my name is Kylie and I really struggle to relax.  Yoga, in the past, just hasn't been for me.  Hot yoga on the other hand is a game changer, and I love starting my weekend with an hour sweat session.

This made me laugh!  I do feel like it's about the only time of my life that is quiet.

Three: Take Out
I've been on my A game for several weeks with healthy food every night of the week.  I just didn't have it in me Saturday night to cook, and Gavin and I ordered The Dirty Dog after we fed our kids.  There is just something soo good about wings and cheeseballs!  

Four: Tumbling
Treyton runs, jumps, climbs, and flips ALL.DAY.LONG at our house--along with never stops talking.  Let me fill you in on the tumbling class he has been taking...  He is the shyest kid in the room and would choose to sit on my lap the entire time if we let him.  The first two weeks he was on the brink of tears and did minimal participating.  This week he did everything but play freeze tag.  Apparently he only likes "normal tag".  Who knew?!

Five: Crafting
I had a little time to play with my Cricut and make some shirts for a couple special kiddos in our lives.  I use the Cricut Maker but there are other Cricuts that do very similar things.  This is my favorite pack of vinyl to ensure I have lots of colors on hand.

Six: Legos
My parents brought Treyton this set of Legos home from their cruise last week and we finally had some time to build it.  Treyton is really into Lego's right now and we have several of these.  They're great if you have other littles in the house that you need to keep them away from.

Seven: Treyton's Blue Pad
My parents got Treyton a Kindle for Christmas a couple of years ago and while I really limit the time he spends on his "Blue Pad", I would be lying if I said it didn't save my sanity some days.  Especially during the winter when we run out of things to do during the day or when the girls are requiring a lot of my attention, it allows him to stay occupied for a bit.  I really like it because there is a "kid's profile" that allows him to only see safe content, and I can set a timer and parameters on what he can do.
Kindle Kid's Edition

Eight: Time at Home
We had several snow days last week which let me be at home with my kiddos and get caught up on life.  I got the chance to sit on the couch, read, and play with my kids this weekend.  Santa brought this Playhouse for Christmas with the intent of it moving to the basement and then outside, but our kids are obsessed with it so it has sat in our living room.

Nine: Hallmark Movies
I watch Hallmark movies all year round, which really annoys Gavin.  I caught him watching one right alongside me this weekend though.
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Ten: Healthy Kids 
Everyone knock on wood for me right now!  We have really struggled this winter with sickness.  We started September with 3 counts of pneumonia and then really never recovered fully.  Trynlee wound up in the ambulance and hospitalized with another round of pneumonia right before the New Year.  Taylor got ear tubes the day after Christmas.  I felt like we couldn't catch a break!  We seem to being holding strong currently though!

Have a great week and if you're from around here, stay warm!

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