Category Archives: instafriday

InstaFriday!

I can’t believe that it is Friday again. Aye aye aye!

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Linking up again with Life Rearraged to chronicle some of the happenings in the Toney family this week.

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Last weekend, we had our annual winter party. If you are new to my blog, my husband and I host a party for our friends every season to celebrate what we love about that season. We’ve been doing this for about 5 years now and it has become a treasured tradition. You can see photos of past seasonal parties here and here.

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For this winter party, I pulled together what I had, buying only some flowers from Trader Joes & our local farmer’s market and a couple rolls of gold & cream striped wrapping paper from Target. The result was a pretty and simple gold & white party.

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I threw some gold glitter on candles I already had (which my husband so loves- ha!).

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I forgot to take any pictures of the food, but I do have this one that shows what the highlight of the winter party is: a soup potluck! Our friends make such awesome soups year after year and it is so fun to be able to keep going back and trying them all :)

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It was so fun to watch the grammys and see a fellow Bruin, Sara Bareilles, sing with Carole King. I’ve been a big fan of Sara’s ever since she started her career back at UCLA and it has been so incredible to see her career grow. Then, the other morning, this gem of a song popped up on one of my pandora stations. The guys of Lady Danville (now Hunter Hunted) were also at UCLA while we were, so I’ve had lots of bruin pride the past couple of weeks :)

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I’m starting to get ready for a certain batman-loving curly hair kid’s third birthday party! I bought the graphic from a designer on etsy and then made the simple invitations and labels. Fun story: these are the last of the envelopes from our wedding invitations- they’ve lasted 8 1/2 years!


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Happy weekend!

InstaFriday!

This week’s instafriday post is going to be short and sweet. I didn’t take or share many photos this week, not for any specific reason- some weeks I just don’t have my phone out that much. And I’m okay with that :)

 

I still want to link up with Jeannett at Life Rearranged though and chronicle the photos I did take of this week in the life of the Toney family.

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Getting happy mail is one of my favorite things ever. The other day, my mailbox was full of happy with all of these fun fabric swatches. It is time to start designing baby boy’s crib bedding!

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I just couldn’t get enough of this outfit. The shirt is from etsy seller Greythread. Even though he is the stage of only making silly faces when you ask him to smile, I just adore this picture of him.

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I have mentioned my friend Emmy and her adoption swaps before on here. It is such a fun way to support a family’s adoption while getting to do something crafting. AND- on top of all of that- you get something super cute in the mail from another person. Again, with my love of happy snail mail, this is right up my ally! This week, I whipped up this sweet Valentine’s Day garland and shipped it off to my exchange partner along with one of our mini banners for Emmy’s Valentine’s Day exchange. If you want to be involved in future swaps, but sure to follow @theadoptswap on instagram.

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It’s a pretty exciting day when I get to hang out with batman all morning.

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My husband has been home for most of the past week after and before some traveling for sabbatical, which has been a treat. He’s made an effort to get some house projects done the past few days, which has been awesome. On today’s agenda was painting my childhood dresser to use in our front room for the kids games and puzzles. When my 6-year old asked to help paint the dresser with “lots of beautiful colors”, I handed him a paintbrush and told him to have at it- on the back side. It was a total win-win: he is stoked that he will have a hidden work of art in our house and I am stoked because my dresser will only be one color while still getting to encourage my son’s creativity and to allow him make a fun memory.

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That’s it for this week! We’ve got a full weekend ahead of baseball, winter partying and superbowling. I hope that your weekend is lovely!

 

 

 

InstaFriday!

It’s a cloudy day, which makes it feel like winter even though it is still over 70 degrees,  my husband is home after being out of town for the week and I just snuck some chocolate, which means it is a great Friday! And since it is Friday, I am linking up with my friend Jeannett of Life Rearranged for InstaFriday.

 

I didn’t post last week, so this is a double instafriday post, sharing some of the moments from our past two weeks that I captured on instagram (I’m @courttoney if you want to follow along during the week).

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There are not many places you can find a shave ice truck out front of school in January. San Diego is one of them.

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I got to have a girls night with two of my nieces. We went to see a movie (The Book Thief) that started at 10:00- which is the time I normally get in bed. Living it up in my old age- I can totally hang with the cool kids :)

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When you are pregnant at the same time as one of your best friends and you buy the same shirts, it’s only a matter of time before you show up at an event matching.

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The other day, Hudson asked me to put the Star Wars vinyl on. He then sat and stared at the pictures on the sleeve the entire time it was on.

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Last week, we headed up to the Central Coast to visit family. First, we spent a couple of days in Santa Barbara with my husband’s grandma and mom. It was such a special time for the boys to make memories with their GG (what they call their great grandma). All of my grandparents died before I was born, so it is so sweet for me to see my boys getting to not only have two sets of involved grandparents, but also a great grandma who loves them very much. I love this shot of 4 generations playing croquet:

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The boys were great most of the time, but Hudson managed to get one #placeshudsonhasatimeout in while we were at GG’s retirement community:

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We then headed to San Luis Obispo to visit my brother, my sister-in-law and their kiddos. We had so much fun enjoying summer- I mean January.

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What started out as father-son paper airplane making turned into guys on the roof throwing stuff:

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My niece Lily loves to cook and is a pretty impressive little chef. One night, Uncle Vito taught her how to make risotto and she was the best sous chef ever. It was delicious!

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One of the most exciting things for me about my husband’s sabbatical is getting to go to church together: driving all together in one car and sitting next to him during worship and the message. Having been in full-time ministry our entire marriage, this is an extreme rarity and so it is a gift for me.

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I headed home at the beginning of the week with the boys and we left Daveed in SLO for a few days so that he could get some quiet study and writing time in. We missed him, but it was such a valuable time for him. I hit the ground running with work when we got back, including finishing and sending out this adorable preppy custom order for a baby shower:

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Last week, I shared a recap of our 50 dates in 2013 project, including how our marriage was greatly affected by it and also a challenge for other couples to commit to intentionally dating their spouse. I am also giving away a VISA giftcard to help one lucky blog reader get started on their dates. The giveaway ends tonight at 5pm PST, so be sure to hop over and enter!

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Happy weekend everyone!

 

 

 

 

InstaFriday!

This week flew by! Time to link up with Life Rearranged’s instafriday again! It has been so nice to settle back into our normal routine. Isaiah was so excited to go back to school and Hudson has loved having alone time in the mornings again.

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This weekend, I got to put my wedding planner hat back on to help two sweet friends on their wedding day. It was such a joy- we are so happy for Brian & Kelsey!

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Yes, my eyes look crazy thanks to the red eye remover. Trust me- it’s better than the crazy evil glowing eyes :)

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This is how Southern CA does winter weddings:

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I didn’t get a chance to take many detail shots, but I did get this one. I love me a bow napkin!

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On Tuesday, Daveed started his sabbatical. Our church’s leadership team and elders are amazing and give full time pastors a 7-week sabbatical every 7 years. It’s a time to rest, study, spend time with family and rejuvenate for the coming years of ministry. We are so thankful and excited about this opportunity! We kicked it off with a date at our favorite breakfast spot, The Cottage in La Jolla. I just love this guy and I am so excited to see what God has in store for him over these next 7 weeks.

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Not only did I get to go on a date with hubby, but later that day, I got to go on a little date with my oldest. His choice? Going to Michaels to get more bands for his rainbow loom and ice cream. Like mother, like son :)

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First book of 2014: check! I really enjoyed The Ocean At The End Of The Lane. It was a dream of a book- very quick to read and beautiful imagery.

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That’s it for this week! Enjoy your weekend everyone!

 

InstaFriday!

Happy New Year!

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Starting 2014 off right by actually blogging an InstaFriday on Friday! I link up with my friend Jeannett of Life Rearranged to share the moments of my week, captured on instagram.

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I took part in a gift exchange as part of the Rabbit Room and I got this fun package from John in Tennessee:

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I can’t wait to get reading! And he even included my favorite holiday tea from Trader Joe’s without knowing it :)

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We got to spend New Year’s Eve celebrating with two couples that are dear with us. The first party was for friends of ours that were celebrating their 20th anniversary, which also coincided with both NYE and the day they made their last payment to become debt free!

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After dinner, we headed to another party for our friends that are having their first baby. At the stroke of midnight, they did a gender reveal by popping big balloons that contained either pink or blue confetti. The confetti was blue, so it’s a boy!

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I am so excited for our baby boy to have another buddy- and they live in our neighborhood which makes it even better!

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I forgot to take any pictures of it, but we had a get together for our 10 year reunion. It was so fun to see friends I hadn’t seen since graduation and those who I see often as well. I stole this picture from someone else on facebook- thanks for taking pictures Hania!

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The hubs and I finished our 50 dates project on New Years Eve and what a year it has been! I am going to do a final recap of our dates next week. I love this man and am so thankful God has blessed me with him!

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Last night, I got to celebrate the birthdays of two of my favorite people and this was our view for the evening. Living in San Diego doesn’t suck.

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Happy first weekend of 2014 everyone!

InstaFriday, sunday style

After a wonderful week of Christmas celebrations and lots of family time, we settled back home today and I finally got my computer (which is on it’s last leg and has not been cooperating) to charge enough for me to use it. Hooray- a Christmas miracle! So, now, I give you, two weeks of InstaFriday on Sunday :)

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I am sharing some of my favorite moments from this Christmas. There are many that are not shown in this post: I am leaving out all of our daily advent activities, as I will be sharing a post tomorrow that recaps all 25 days. Also missing from this post are a couple of dates for our 50 Dates in 2013 project, as I will be posting on that later this week as well.

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Isaiah and I got to take a mommy-son bike ride to our local farmers market. I love being able to do things like this with him now that he is older.

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For one of our advent activities, we went to Sea World to see all of the fun holiday activities and decor. They have a little snow play area (which is basically some ice) and Hudson kept calling the snow “frosting”. Because he is a Southern CA kid. He sees frosting 99 times more than he sees snow.

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Two and a half years ago, I sold my wedding planning company. One of the things that I miss the most is seeing all of my friends in the wedding industry. The past two years, a few of them have thrown a Christmas party for wedding friends who are also moms. It has been so wonderful to still be included in this list and I so very much enjoyed seeing everyone and catching up. My night with them was such a blessing!

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Speaking of weddings, last weekend David and I got to see one of our college friends marry his beautiful bride. The wedding was wonderful- it was held at an incredible new venue in Long Beach called The Loft on Pine. For the second time that week, I got to spend time with dear friends who I hardly ever see. We may have even done an 8-clap during dinner (Go Bruins!). It was such an honor to be able to sing their first dance song for them. I will always remember singing with my husband while watching them dance, singing the words to each other, overflowing with joy.

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This is the photo we chose for our Christmas cards this year, taken by the lovely Megan Ann Photography. I still am in shock that we could get one picture where they both are looking and smiling. I am expecting that to never happen once another little boy joins our family photo next year :)

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A couple more #placeshudsonhasatimeout photos to add to the collection:

Miss Melissa’s front porch (where he goes to daycare one morning a week):

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Please note that the sign above him says “sing a happy song”. He did not get the memo. (In case you were wondering, this timeout was because he wanted to close her front gate himself but couldn’t do it, so a major tantrum ensued. Life is tough when you are almost 3).

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And another one at Pastor Doug’s house, in the middle of a Christmas party:

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Most of the time, he is the cutest thing ever- a total lovebug and a really funny kid. He’s just two. And likes to hit his brother. And is extremely strong willed. I have no idea where he got that :)

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He usually sings while he plays, so when it gets quiet in the house, I start to worry about what he’s getting into. Most of the time, though, I find him just like this: plopped in the middle of a big pile of books, quietly flipping through the pages. It makes me so happy.

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Me & my dapper boys at church on the Sunday before Christmas:

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They are hams and I just love them so much.

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On Christmas Eve, I sing at church both services with my husband, so it is always a little chaotic getting everything ready before practice and rushing home for dinner and gifts and bedtime for the boys. My wonderful mother in law not only comes down to watch them, but she also makes the most amazing paella. It’s serious business- she even has a special paella grill for the backyard. Isaiah enjoyed watching her work:

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Look at all of that incredible seafood! While she was doing that at our house, I was doing this:

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You know that it is Christmas Eve when there are sleigh bells at my station.

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Christmas morning was lovely. Quiet, joyful time with our little family of 4, reading our last advent reading and singing happy birthday to Jesus. And opening presents, of course :)

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We then headed up to Orange County for Christmas brunch and dinner with my family. I have a big family and I love it so so much. There is definitely never a dull moment :)  As we have all grown up and started having kids, the gift list has grown and grown. To help with this, we decided to change up the gift exchange for siblings & their spouses. Rather than giving everyone a gift, we each bring a $25 gift card to anywhere we want. We then tape them up on the window and use Nerf guns to try to shoot the one we want. If you hit it and the dart sticks, it’s yours. Let me tell you- this is a lot harder than it looks! It’s become a fun little tradition for us.

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The next couple of days were filled with more family time and a bit of friend time. I was sad for Christmas to be over, but it was nice to come back home after a very full couple of weeks. Now to take down that very dead tree!

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Happy New Years week everyone!

Instafriday

I just love Christmastime. Even the small moments of each day are filled with so much joy.

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I’m linking up with Life Rearranged for InstaFriday again and this one makes me extra happy because it’s filled with Christmas fun.

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This song came on Pandora the other day and it made me so happy:

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The Stitch Market in San Luis Obispo was great and my aunt’s memorial service went well. After going non-stop for three days, I headed back down the coast. I got home late and was extremely exhausted, but walked into this:

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My sweet husband had the Christmas lights all on and the house clean. He’s the best. And I just cannot get enough of our tree.

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This advent season, I have been reading Behold the Lamb of God by Russ Ramsey. It has been helpful to remind me daily of the big story of Christmas, keeping me focused on celebrating Jesus. I highly recommend the book.

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Speaking of advent, our advent calendar activities have been going along strong. While I was up in central CA, my husband took the lead for a couple of days. They read the allotted portions of the bible together in the morning and then Isaiah got to grab the card out of our advent banner. One day, the activity was to help David put the lights up outside. While listening to Vince Guaraldi, of course.

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The next day, they continued with the Charlie Brown theme and listened to our A Charlie Brown Christmas book on vinyl. Yes- book on vinyl. It is my most prized thrift store find ever.

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My first day back, we needed a mellow family night, so we had a picnic dinner by the tree and watch Elf. So great. Isaiah has been grabbing my phone all week, pretending to answer with, “Buddy the Elf, what’s your favorite color?”.

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We made a gingerbread house (always one of their favorite activities):

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A big high-5 to Trader Joes for having a great gingerbread house kit. Super easy to use, stays together, homemade frosting and it’s cute on top of all of that.

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On the day that friends all over the rest of the country were talking about snowing and being snowed in, we felt like we should get in on the action by making snowflakes. I found the Star Wars templates online and Isaiah thought that they were pretty much the coolest thing ever. The boys now have a wall of snowflakes in their room.

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We had our first of 2 giving days. We went through all of the boys toys & games and donated a few bags full. It warmed this mama’s heart to see how into Isaiah was. He was just as excited about reading this on the card as he was with any of the other days.

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Yesterday, we made some simple snow globes. Another big hit. Hudson was even really excited about making them, which I did not expect. (side note: his is not all murky like it looks in the picture. The combination of him just shaking it and the lighting made it look kind of dirty).

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Today, we were supposed to go to the zoo, but a sick kiddo meant we had to change our plans. Instead, we took a car ride to look at lights, completely with PJ’s and warm chocolate chip cookies. I printed off a Christmas lights scavenger hunt list and they loved it!

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A customer shared this photo of how she used one of our mini banners on a small wreath she made. I love it!

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For date 45 of 50 (almost there!) we got to go see one of my favorite bands, The Head & The Heart perform. It was so crazy good. Totally worth getting home at 2am and then helping in my son’s kindergarten class at 8am :)

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That’s it for this week. Have a wonderful weekend full of cheer!

InstaFriday! (times two)

Ready for a double dose of Instafriday? Including a birthday, thanksgiving, a 50th anniversary, dates and the beginning of advent? Here we go! Linking up with the lovely Jeannett of Life Rearranged.

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In my last instafriday post, I shared that it was my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. We celebrated that night at dinner with family and their closest friends and it was a really sweet time. You can still kiss after being married 50 years? Gross. :)

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The kids with the parents. We love you mom & dad!

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It was my birthday a few days before thanksgiving and I felt so showered with love from my family and friends. The day before, a group of 15 friends went to lunch and to see Catching Fire to celebrate. It is so rare to be able to get this many friends in one place at one time, so it was a great present for me.

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I took this at church that morning. I truly am so thankful for our church family- especially being a pastor’s wife, it is a blessing to be a part of a community that loves Jesus, loves each other and is so real.

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On the morning of my birthday, my boys and I hiked Torrey Pines- one of my favorite spots in San Diego. It was so lovely!

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My sweet husband knew how much I would appreciate a handmade gift so he made me these joy letters:

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How cute is that? He even used glitter- his least favorite thing in the world. What a good crafty guy :)

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That night, I thought I was going on a date with David, but when we got to the restaurant, he surprised me by having a bunch of my dear friends there to join us. One of my favorite places to eat in San Diego (Extraordinary Desserts) with some of my favorite people? Definitely a win. At the end of the night, one of my friends bought me a sparkler candle and they all laughed at my while I lit it. A great end to a great day.

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Thanksgiving weekend was crazy, full and wonderful. We are blessed with amazing families on both sides and I never take that for granted. On thanksgiving, we drove a lot, ate a lot and laughed a lot. Especially at the end of the day when my brother showed the kids Elf Yourself. They were belly laughing for a good 15 minutes watching their faces on dancing elves. My heart was so full in that little moment at the end of a big day.

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No black friday shopping that day, just lots and lots of family time. Every year, either the day after Thanksgiving or the day after Christmas, we have the Cheney family olympics. We all plan 2 games, break into teams and have some healthy friendly competetion all day long. It is a highlight of the year. We are super goofy and there are 24 of us, so it is entertaining for sure. Here is a quick look into some of the activites.

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Daveed always starts off the festivities by leading the group in the most lovely (errr.. off-pitch and loud) version of the star spangled banner, followed by ridiculous and awkward stretches. Normally, we do this down at the park, but the rain kept us inside in the morning. We started off with a bunch of minute-to-win-it style games.

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The next series of photos started like this (throw the cheetos on the shaving cream head game):

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Which led to this (sibling shaving cream fight):

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Which, obviously, led to this (polar bearing in the freezing pool):

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We headed down to the park once the rain stopped for some soccer, basketball and balance beaming:

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After our park games, we headed back inside for name that tune, a cupcake decorating contest and ended the day with the adults playing nouns in a bowl. It was such a fun day and I love that my kids will have these memories.

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Cousin cuddles:

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The next day, we did thanksgiving with Daveed’s family and I totally forgot to take any pictures. It was delicious though! Before that, we got all 24 members of my family together for a big family photo. It was pretty crazy, but went better than I thought. The professional pics are going to be beautiful, but here is a quick iphone snap of my siblings and parents:

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I’m so glad that these people are my people.

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It was so fun to have one of my favorite past brides take our photos. Kelsey, thanks for being brave enough to take on the Cheney family :)

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Amazingly, in all of that craziness, Hudson only had one timeout. #placeshudsonhasatimeout: grandma’s house.

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On December 1st, we got our tree and kicked off advent. Every morning, we read a devotional with the boys (from the great website The Story Warren- which uses The Jesus Storybook Bible) and then Isaiah gets to take a card out of our advent calendar banner. Here is a look at what we have done the first 6 days:

Day 1: Getting our tree

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Day 2: Christmas book marathon (which ended up being not a marathon due to some tantrums and a terrible dinner time… but that’s another story for another time):

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Day 3: Christmas crafts with Nonna (including a playdough dreidel for good measure)

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Day 4: hot chocolate time

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Day 5: Christmas legos:

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Day 6: Hanging the lights outside with Daddy:

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Isaiah is loving every minute of it. It’s just the best. Reading about Jesus together every morning and creating memories. We also do a couple of little things to celebrate Hanukkah, to teach Isaiah about his heritage (on Daveed’s side). I realized this week that he thinks everyone does that as part of their Christmas celebrations :)

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We got a couple of dates in during the past two weeks- we are approaching the finish line for our 50 dates in 2013. For date 43, we walked from my parent’s house up to get some breakfast and grabbed some donuts to surprise the kids on our way back. Those streets are the streets of my childhood- riding bikes to get ice cream, walking to get McDonald’s on long summer days. Walking them with my love was a sweet thing.

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For date 44, we decorated our tree while listening to Christmas records and starting our advent readings together. Such a dreamy way to start off the holiday season.

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While looking at maternity clothes online, I came across these. No. Just no.

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We have become that family that all wears our team shirts on game days. And our boys are perfecting the 8-clap. Go bruins!

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I am currently up in San Luis Obispo for the Stitch Market. If you are in the Central Coast, come see us tomorrow at Grace Church from 10-3.

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How you know you’re a mom of boys: a customer finds a star wars angry bird guy in your box of Christmas banners and then sets it on display:

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How you know you’re a crafter: your 6 year old texts you from his grandma’s phone to ask if he can show her how your cricut works.

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Happy weekend everyone! I’ll try to not post 37 pictures in my next instafriday post :)

Instafriday!

Friday again- you know what that means! Linking up with my friend Jeannett for Instafriday and sharing some of my favorite moments from the past week.

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One of my close friends from high school got married out in Palm Springs last weekend. It was such a blast! We got to stay at the wedding venue, Korakia Pensione, which is an incredible bed & breakfast. The architecture and design was so charming and it had such a peaceful, romantic feel. I highly recommend it!

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Date #42 of 50: celebrating Jenna & Dan’s wedding and playing music together before the ceremony. I love that we share a passion for music- it has been a part of our relationship from the beginning. We met as a part of our church’s Jr. High worship team :) My husband is crazy talented and I love that I get to be a part of his music. And that he finds me instruments I can play. Like my buddy the harmonium there:

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The wedding was beautiful and so so fun! We love you Mr & Mrs Fig!

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As a bonus treat, there was an after party at a local bar where my friend Clarissa’s awesome 80′s band played. My prego feet were super tired from all of that dancing!

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On our way out to Palm Springs, we had date #41 out of 50. I scored major wife points by agreeing to eat at a wings place (not my favorite by far) that had 30- seriously- 30!- TVs playing sports. Only for my husband and only to watch UCLA play (and win! Go Bruins!).

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On our way home, my sweet Aunt Corky went to be with Jesus. Visiting her in Central CA growing up is one of my favorite childhood memories. She will be so missed and was dearly loved. I’m looking forward to celebrating her life with our extended family in a couple of weeks.

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Isaiah brought this home from school:

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When he finished one of his assignments early, he was told to write a sentence about a turkey on the back. This is what he came up with- ha!

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With all of the craziness the past couple of months, my reading has slowed down significantly. I finally finished this book, After Visiting Friends, and I enjoyed it. It is an interesting read- a memoir and true mystery. Totally different than what I would normally pick up, but I am glad that someone recommended it.

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My friend Emmy has hosted some super fun exchanges to raise money for her adoption and now for another family’s. This time, it was a handmade Christmas exchange. I haven’t received my package yet, but this is what I sent off to my secret exchange buddy:

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Side note: I will have those wood chalkboard ornaments at the Stitch Market in a couple of weeks. Christmas banners will be in the shop after the boutique on the 7th :)

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Yesterday, Hudson walked in Daveed’s office/recording studio, kicked him out of his chair, grabbed his headphones and said, “I listen Daddy’s music”. Love that kid.

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These two kids got married 50 year ago today- how amazing is that? Love you mom & dad! Happy anniversary!

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Happy weekend!

Instafriday!

It’s friday friday… I woke up with that annoying song in my head. I apologize if you now have it stuck in  your head as well :)

I am recapping our week with Jeannett for Instafriday!

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Last friday, we had our annual fall party and it was SO fun! I will be sharing all of the details next week.

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The next morning, David and I snuck in date 40 of our 50 dates in 2013. We walked to our local farmer’s market for some groceries and a waffle. Such a sweet time together.

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17 weeks with my first pregnancy (6 1/2 years ago!) and 17 weeks this time around:

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Our pumpkin plant in our garden grew exactly one pumpkin. Which is one more pumpkin than we got last year, so success!

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I announced this week that we are having another boy. You can see my thoughts on that here.

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Isaiah got to spend the long weekend in Santa Barbara with his Nonna (daveed’s mom) & GG (daveed’s grandma). He had such a wonderful time! Hudson definitely missed him though, so they were so happy to be reunited. They were straight up crazy that day, but I love how they love each other.

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Minimum day and 85 degrees calls for ice cream. Also, I’m glad that San Diego got the memo that it’s fall today and dropped 20 degrees :)

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Happy weekend everyone!!