Mid-Winter Things // 2024

Spring is here! But before I jump into our spring things, I wanted to update about our post holiday mid-winter. The past few months have continued to be hunkered down at home. And while I look forward to our sunnier days of spring ahead, I enjoy the post holiday winter days to tidy up the house, have some cozy days at home, and work on some New Year inspired projects.

The first photo is my collection of ribbons I used this year on our Christmas tree. I loved the color combo so much that I made sure to document it for future reference.

The Christmas decorations got taken down but we left up our winter snowflakes, hoping it would bring us one more snow.

I organized baby girl's hair bows and was inspired to use what I have. Cut out cardboard were perfect to organize the different styles and quickly see which color I wanted.

This girl loves her snowsuit. She gets giggly when we put her in it. This snowsuit has served us well with each of our kids. It is perfect for keeping them warm outside while keeping them in the outfit they were already in.

I discovered this delicious tea from Trader Joe's this year. It reminds me of hot apple cider and was my go to all winter long. I went on a deep online dive to figure out if I could find something similar that was available all year long and was happy to find that Celestial Seasonings Cinnamon Apple Spice was practically the same.

Baby girl is growing up quickly! She is our sweet little peanut!

I love these ordinary days at home. Spotting little astronauts is pure joy. Our daughter will be off to all day kindergarten next year. I am soaking up this sweet time with her at home as much as I can. Time is a thief!

Our house was looking extra cozy on a cold day - holiday wreaths still up and a fire going.

We had a very cold spell and our heater hasn't been working great. So for a couple of days we had our fireplace running nonstop. I felt like a wilderness woman collecting wood all day long to keep the fire going.

Our wood storage setup has been serving us well.

Baby girl is eating all the things and is a joy to have with us at the table.

All four babies together! Little milestones like these fill my heart up with so much love.

Powersheets, to do lists, quiet time, journaling, and a hot cup of something. Trying so hard to take some time for myself at naptime but it continues to be so hard in this season. I give myself lots of grace and know that more free time opens up as babies grow. It is bittersweet for sure.

Brent had a doctor's appointment in Seattle I had to drive him to. So I made an afternoon out of it and took the kids to the park. It was so bitter cold and there were no other people in sight. But having the park to ourselves and happy kids made it a fun outing.

We then warmed up at a local downtown library. It was full of homeless people trying to get a break from the cold. Those librarians are saints. They were serving those homeless people with so much kindness. Letting them sleep, helping them find warm places to stay for the night, and giving out hand warmers. It provided some good conversations with my oldest and filled me with a lot of humility for all that we have and appreciation for this library and how they were serving their community in more than ways than one.

Our little flood water creek froze providing the kids with their own mini ice rink!

I found these no longer available Target Valentine's mugs on ebay. And while they are so cute, they are a little small. I am kind of disappointed. I really need to stop buying holiday mugs. Someone please help me!

We enjoyed a cold walk with an old friend to one of our favorite parks full of walking trails and farm animals. Another bitter cold day but the kids are troopers.

Sometimes I forget that we have some pretty incredible free activities to do around here. I get irritated sometimes that everything costs so much money and with four kids it often isn't worth the price. But in reality, we have lots of fun things to do. Trying to be more grateful!

Valentine crafting is one of my favorites of the whole year. The kids made lots of Valentines to send to some of our family.

Conversation hearts and freeze dried strawberries in popcorn is also a Valentine's snack tradition my children love.

We only had one small snow this year. It was disappointing but thankfully the kids were home from school to at least enjoy the little we got.

And while getting everyone dressed and holding a baby is a time consuming event, I remind myself of last year and that at least I am not pregnant!

My two oldest are now at the age where they can write their own class Valentines! What a new season this is. It was so cute to see them focused on the task.

Our son picked out a $2 card set from Walmart and we printed out free Valentines for my daughter. This is your kind reminder that if you too strive for a low key class Valentine - I AM WITH YOU. In my son's first grade class he was the only one who didn't give any candy or toys. No judgment to those who are giving out full size goody bags. My kids love it! But of all the stuff they get, I don't think anyone would even notice that my kids only gave cards.

Gotta get every drop of that oatmeal or cereal milk!

Rainy day walks to the bus stop.

I am trying to get in yoga once a week for my joint pain issues but it doesn't always happen. But these quiet mornings are lovely when I do.

That moment you realize your baby grew up. My big helper! My heart was filled with so much pride and joy! All that training and toddler rearing proves to be worth it when you see your little person turning into a kind human being.

I ordered a state rattle for our baby girl and had to get a picture of all of them together. We for sure thought that if we were to have a fourth child we would need to move to another state again! But here we are, two Washington babies later. A life I would have never imagined but am so thankful for.

I continue getting so sentimental about getting rid of clothes now that we are done having babies. I remember my nephews wearing some of these items and it takes me way back. Thankfully I have had a few friends who could take the clothes. And then the rest I just have to donate and not look back. I have been waiting to do this for years and now that it is here, it is SO SAD.

And the baby girl clothes! So many special items I bought when we found out we were having a girl (and didn't have the same hand me downs we had for our son).

A cozy quiet moment with my baby. And I finally got new glasses after like ten years!

One of my outdoor goals this year has been to clean off our porch and get the toys and kid stuff stored somewhere else. I really wanted a porch swing before our littlest was too big to rock. We made it happen and it has been such a treat to swing with my littles. I don't have a picture of just the swing yet but will need to do that soon!

Over mid-winter break when the kids were off from school, we did a couple low key activities around town that was so much fun. I love simple days at home during school breaks. The kids seem to need some down time at home to play and be together and I enjoy the uninterrupted time at home to get little projects around the house done. And then we always get out a couple of times for some simple outings. We visited this space/rocket themed park for the first time and it was a huge hit!

More e-bike adventures! The kids love to help Brent out with any and every project he is working on!

A noteworthy dessert pretty enough to document. I love chocolate mousse!

I got Brent this little gummi tackle box from Target. He loves his gummies and candy! I like that it came with stickers to personalize.

And we continue to give the same hot cocoa bombs from Target to teachers for Valentine's Day. I love wrapping them up and making them cute.

We were picking out some flowers at Costco and the sweet woman working there offered the kids some roses that fell off the bouquets. They were so excited and I loved seeing their little collection together at home.

More school bus walks!

I made these cute little treat boxes for Brent and the kids this year. I would leave them around the house or on the dining table with our meal. They were especially fun for me to make! Though the puffy stickers didn't stay very well so I will need to get some different ones next year. I found little letter stickers all around the house weeks later!

We found this great shed at Costco to store all the kids' bikes and outdoor toys. It has been so nice to have a designated place for storage not on the porch and since we don't have a garage.

Watching Frozen with my girl and having a cozy sick day at home.

And then I made her pause the movie so I could get a picture without Elsa! haha! She didn't mind.

Brent got me a cordless vacuum for Christmas that was on sale. I didn't realize how life changing this would be. It has been awesome! He got me this Craftsman that can use the same battery as his other tools. It has worked so well! I vacuumed our mattress for the first time after sprinkling it with baking soda. It looked like a brand new mattress!

Valentine treats! And I spy baby feet!

I personalized the kids' Valentine treats and was quite smitten with how cute they were! Hence the next three pictures...lol

My parents were in town for a visit and we had a nice brunch with just the two littles while the others were at school. Seeing my kids grow up and dealing with change is hard, but there are also beautiful blessings of new seasons. We loved this sweet time with just the toddler and baby.

This girl!!! She loves her first words sound book. We always joke it looks like she is working on her computer.

Brent and I try to get a night away when my parents are here for a visit. It has been such a wonderful time to get away (with the baby) and always so generous of my parents to watch the big kids for us. We usually keep it local unless it is our anniversary or other special occasion. It has been so fun to get to know the surrounding cities a little better. We get to walk around town more and enjoy some slightly finer dining options.

We stayed at The Heathman in Kirkland. We loved Kirkland Bakery, Hearth, and walking around the Kirkland waterfront.

For Lunar New Year we made some paper lanterns that were so fun to hang in our dining room.

And paper dragons from The Magic Playbook printables.

For the Superbowl, the kids all put on Brent's high school football jerseys!

Another quiet moment documented.

The kids' Valentines they woke up to. They each got a small little lego set with their candy.

Our Valentine breakfast (leftover flowers from a birthday).

And Valentines school lunch!

Baby girl got her rattle for her Valentine.

In the past I have taken the little ones not at school on a little Valentine's date. But this year I didn't have the time or energy. I was a little sad about it but had to remind myself I have next year with these two. But we did have to go in to the store after doing our grocery pick up to get a few things which turned into a very fun event.

The bakery was giving away free Valentine cookies and the woman in self check out gave us a free balloon! My son was so happy! And it was such a joy to be a recipient of other's kindness. In my day of feeling drained I was able to receive blessings from others. What a gift!

Giving candles a go again. It was nice but then I got OCD about trying to let the candle burn all the way to the edge and then it was too fragrant. It was stressing me out! I guess I will just stick to my essential oils for now!

More seasonal popcorn treats and baby feet!

Always chocolate covered strawberries for Valentine's Day! A treat for myself (and to share!). I tried to cover them with sprinkles but the chocolate already dried!!

And our Olive Garden take out tradition is always a treat.

And finally, an annual photo I have taken of each of the kids in their winter hats. A favorite!

Thank you winter for cozy days at home, comforting meals, and warm fires. But spring, we are ready!