Friday, December 29, 2017

Happy 3rd Birthday Sutton and Avery!

I came out of vacation hiding to post about my two favorite little people because TODAY is their birthday. Happy 3rd Birthday my sweet twins. I still can't believe they are 3. Don't we all say that about our kids every birthday? They grow up so fast.
identical twin toddlers

Dear Sutton and Avery,

Wow, what a whirlwind of a year it has been. Last year you two didn't have much interest in opening your birthday gifts, but I know today will be different. From what I saw on Christmas Day, I know you will open your gifts from us in seconds. Just like you do with everything in life. You two go in full force and enjoy every second of it. I know I can learn a lot from you two.

Your vocabulary has exploded. I was a bit worried that you two wouldn't talk much other than in your own twin language, but you two talk non-stop. You definitely get that from me. You two surprise me daily with the things you say. I often wonder where you came up with some of this stuff. My new favorite thing about you two is when you say oh my goodness. It is just soooo sweet.

You two have grown so much in the last year. You are taller than most of the kids in your class. You both love to eat, but are so picky. You love chicken nuggets and you must try mommy's spicy Indian food, but when it comes to fruit, you often pass on it. But if I give you anything with dip (ranch) on it, you will eat it up. Especially broccoli.
identical twin toddlers

Sutton, you were my first born and you have always tended to be a mommy's girl and I love that about you. You are the most caring and sweet little girl. You love to dress up, have your hair put up like a princess, do mommy's hair, give the biggest hugs, take care of your babies, climb, jump, dance and sing. I can't wait to see what your future brings for you. I find it so sweet when you caress my face and tell me you like my hair or my necklace. You are such a gentle soul. You are such a daredevil when it comes to trying new things. You will climb up any play structure or will go the fastest setting on your new Jeep.
identical twin toddlers

Unofficial stats (we have your 3 year appointment on Tuesday):
Height: 37 1/2 inches
Weight: 32.6 lbs

Avery, you were my second born, but only by seconds. You my dear are a total daddy's girl and I love seeing the bond you have with your dad. But the second he is away, you turn into my arms and I love it. Avery you are a fireball, but in the best way. You love to talk and tell me all about your day. You are a total instigator and often ask your sister to get you your things. Do I see a future CEO? Maybe. You have the best personality and you are sooo smart. I can't believe the things that I see you doing and learning on a daily basis. You have such a sweet side. You love taking care of your baby and making sure she is ok because she often gets sick. You love wrapping her up and are going to be such a great mommy.
identical twin toddlers

Unofficial stats:
Height: 37 inches
Weight: 33.6 lbs

I love you baby girls. Even though you are in the middle of your terrible twos and going onto your terrorist threes, it is such a blessing to see you grow and learn. I love sharing our lives. Thank you for choosing me to be your mommy. I am so blessed. Cheers to 3 years old and hundreds (to living forever) more.

Mommy aka Mommy Danielle aka Mama aka Mom

I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! I hope you are all snuggled up at home with your kids (or pet kids) and soaking in every second of this day. I am so grateful to spend this day with not just my immediate family, but my parents, my sister and my in-laws.

And again, just for a few laughs, my girls when they met Santa this year. Don't worry, they were happy this morning when they saw everything Santa brought them.
Santa Photos

Friday, December 22, 2017

Friday Favorites - Christmas

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It's Friday! We survived the week before Christmas. I am calling this week a win, mostly because my office is so dead. People are either out due to the holidays or we are lacking work because others are out for the next two weeks.

I am almost done with Christmas prep. I just need to grocery shop and bake a few things....homemade cinnamon rolls and cookies for Santa.

So let's dive into my Friday Favorites.

ONE. Wednesday was the day the girls were to give their pacifiers to Giuseppe. We allowed them to have them on our drive to daycare (2 minutes) each way and in the evening. Once we got home from work, we gathered all their other pacis in the house and put them by Giuseppe. Then when it was their bedtime, we had them bring over their daily ones and give them to Giuseppe. They did it and were ok with it.
Elf on the Shelf ideas

Once they got into bed, they asked for their pacis back for about 10 minutes and then fell asleep without them. Avery did wake up at midnight and came right into our room. She got into bed and snuggled there all night. Sutton woke up (more like half asleep) at 1 am asking for her paci. I told her that Giuseppe took her paci to Santa and to snuggled her blanket. Her mouth was making the paci sucking motion, but she soothed herself back to sleep and slept in her room the whole night by herself.

So the first night went pretty well. We were thinking they would cry all night, but we were wrong. Now let's hope we can have similar or even better nights the next few nights into forever.

After the girls got ready for school, they went to find Giuseppe like they usually do. Once they found him, they saw that they had a big present to share and some mini hair brushes. They opened the big present together which was the Minnie Club House from the Happy Helpers on Mickey Roadsters. They were soooo excited and wanted to open it up right then, but we had to get going to school. We said they could play with it later. They then asked to bring their brushes with them in the car.

So all in all, it was pretty successful so far. Let's hope it continues.

TWO. This week I was browsing IG or FB and saw the coolest dog beds. Walter loves to snuggle. Especially when it is cold outside. He loves his blanket so much that he snuggles under it every night. When I saw this blanket dog bed combo, I really wanted it for Walter. I think he would love it. How cool is this?
Slipper Dog bed

Your dog gets inside of the blanket, but has a cozy to bed to lay on. Such a simple concept, but awesome.

THREE. I had such a hard time figuring out stocking stuffers for my girls. I searched some of my favorite blogs, I looked through the dollar spot at Target (completely gutted, ugh) and then just went to the store and went through almost all the aisles three times. But I did it. I found some great items and I wanted to share some of them here just in case you need some last minute ideas.

I got them Disney princess band aids (a box for each), a $0.99 tiny carton of Gold Fishes, Cat and Jack Crew Socks, Cat and Jack low cut socks, a pair of wacky socks each, small container of m&ms, Hot Wheels, Burts Bees chapstick, Cat and Jack headbands, silly putty, Paw Patrol bath toy, stickers and a Frozen write and erase pad.

FOUR. Above I said that I was making cinnamon rolls this weekend. It is a tradition started by my mom and one that I carry on now. Last year I posted my cinnamon roll recipe, so I thought I would share it again, in case you want to make them for your family. Note: you need to add a ton of cinnamon and sugar. Add way more than I did last year. I plan to. I used to make a mixture of the butter, cinnamon and sugar. It would be a thick paste and that is basically what you want on our dough (it is just harder to spread this way). So add a bunch and when you think you have enough, add more.
Homemade cinnamon rolls

FIVE. This isn't Christmas related, but it can be. Remember a few weeks back when I wore my sequin leggings to my friends 30th birthday? Well I am wearing them again for NYE. Yep, we are going out. We never go out for NYE anymore. It is most definitely amateurs night. But this year we were invited to our old neighbors house for a champagne/cocktail party. They only moved about a mile away and we are dying to see their renovated house. It is adults only and most definitely a great networking party. You best bet I will be wearing my sequin leggings with a silvery or fun shirt. Plus they are 50% off right now.

Merry Christmas to all of my blogging friends!

I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
Thursday, December 21, 2017

Christmas Home Tour

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Happy first day of Winter!!! We were surprised to wake up yesterday to snow on the valley floor. But it didn't last long and we are hoping for more this weekend. I want a white Christmas!!!

Anyways, I am coming at you with a little Christmas house tour. I took the pictures in the evening because, WORK, but I still wanted to share a little bit of my home. I didn't get the cute Christmas tree that is in my girls room as I keep forgetting until after they are asleep. But you can just imagine. Enjoy.

Right when you walk in the front door, just to the left is this little set up. I usually hang Walter's stocking up with ours, but since we bought new Pottery Barn stockings for Rory and I, there isn't any room up there. So for now, it sits on a light. Ha. Notice the six Fall and Winter candles from Bath and Body Works? There is a ton more throughout my house. These are used all the time.
Christmas Home Tour

This little door hanger is from Rory's childhood. Walter has taken a bite or two out of his beard, but has left it alone in the last few years.
Christmas Home Tour

We bought the girls their Pottery Barn stockings two years ago and decided to get semi-matching ones this year. The problem with getting them two years apart? The stockings are bigger, the tops are different and the writing is smaller. But we are still overall happy with them.
Pottery Barn Fair Isle Stocking

This is our entertainment center and we have added a few Christmas items that we have gotten over the years from Target, Pier One and small local shops.
Christmas Home Tour

Our little snowmen along with my favorite glassy babies (they make the perfect gift)
Christmas Home Tour

This Merry Christmas banner is new to us this year. My MIL got it and it fits here perfectly.
Christmas Home Tour

Our tree which I love, but hate that I couldn't find a tree topper for it. I just wish I had an angel or something to complete it. Right now we have a glittery bow which will do.
Christmas Home Tour

This Santa sign comes from Target and is the cutest. My mom got it for us last year.
Christmas Home Tour

We feel so loved to receive so many Christmas cards using the cutest holder. Again, my mom got us this a few years ago. Funny story...I come home one evening from an appointment and Rory shows me a bunch of new cards. He said he didn't know who a bunch of them were, but were guessing they were my blogging friends. I told him they were and how amazing my friendships are with my blogging friends. He said it was awesome that I had developed friendships from this which I completely agree! So thank you my friends.
Christmas Home Tour - Christmas Card Holder

We got this little reindeer from Target a few years ago and he was even used as Giuseppe's "hiding" place.
Christmas Home Tour

This is the cutest Merry Christmas banner from the dollar spot last year. Plus that is my favorite picture from my wedding day.
Christmas Home Tour

This little advent calendar is guessed it, Target.
Christmas Home Tour

As I said, there is some decorations in the girls room and many outside, but I forgot to capture those.

Did you do a home tour post? I would love to see it.
Wednesday, December 20, 2017

What's Up Wednesday - Christmas Edition

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I am back for another round of What's Up Wednesday. I am so glad this link up is this week because I am not sure how much I will even post next week. I do have a post planned for next Friday as it will be my baby girls' 3rd birthday. How is that even possible?
What's Up Wednesday


I am a little embarrassed to post about our meals this week because we are barely eating at home. I blame it on the holidays.

Monday: I picked up salads after my facial for Rory and I. 
Tuesday: Take-out again as Rory has a Nevada basketball game to go to and we have to pick up the girls and his truck from Toyota after work.
Wednesday: I am having dinner with one of my best friends at this yummy Italian place.
Thursday: Dinner at family's house - chili and cornbread.
Friday: Something in the Instant Pot.
Saturday: Not sure.
Sunday: We have our annual Christmas Eve party at my parents best friends house and they have soooo many goodies to eat.


My friends just had a baby on Monday morning and she is soooo darling. It made me think about my girls, how they are turning 3 next week and their birth story. It was a crazy story and one that will stick with me forever.


The holidays. I am soooo excited for this weekend. I have been planning, wrapping and prepping for Christmas.


Other than getting ready for the holidays, not much. I have been prepping for our Christmas dinner. We host Christmas dinner every year and this year is no different. This year we will be having broiled lobster with drawn butter, glazed baby carrots, prosciutto wrapped asparagus, cesar salad and rolls. I am sooo excited to make this meal and can't wait to see how it turns out.


That my face is going to peel from my brutal chemical peel that I had on Monday. I feel like my face is going to fall off. I don't get peels that often, but wow, this one has been the worst. I think I need to lay off of them for a couple times. Ouch.

What else am I dreading? Today is the day where the girls give their pacis to their elf, Giuseppe, and get a present in exchange for it. I fear for our sleep tonight, so please send a little prayer that the girls do so much better than I am expecting.


Christmas everything. Planning our dinner, planning for Christmas morning, making cinnamon rolls, etc. Isn't every answer planning for Christmas? Ha.


The holidays. Seeing my girls open their gifts, continuing Christmas traditions, making new ones and celebrating my girls 3rd birthday.


I am still reading The Husband's Secret. How is that even possible? Ha. But I am close to being done. I have been reading it in between everything and am actually really getting into it. I just want to see how it ends. I feel like I fly through suspense books easier because I HAVE to know what happens asap. Fingers crossed I can finish this book and move onto one of the many in my que. 

As for tv, I have been watching all the Hallmark Christmas movies. Plus some movies on Netflix. I loved a Christmas Prince, the Heart of Christmas, Enchanted Christmas, Switched at Christmas and the list goes on. I love these movies even though they pretty much are all the same.

I haven't been watching much of anything else since all my favorite shows are on a Christmas break.


A lot of Christmas music.


I am wearing my J Crew peacoat jacket a lot this winter (similar to this one).
J Crew Jacket

I also bought a few Loft blouses for work since everything was 50 - 60% off and free shipping. I needed some new blouses for an upcoming work trip next month. Stay tuned below for where I am off too.
Loft Dot Blouse


All things Christmas related.


I am heading on another work trip and this time I am going to England (again) and Ireland. I have never been to Ireland and to say that I am excited for that part is an understatement. I can't wait to see Ireland. But what I am not looking forward to? Being away from my girls for 11 days. Seriously that is sooooo long. Plus with the time change, I rarely get to see them via facetime. Ugh. But Ireland, yes! Plus I get to see one of my friends from school days again since she lives in England...and she is an identical twin herself.


I have been buying things for the girls 3rd birthday party which has the theme of Minnie Mouse. Would there be any other theme? Nope. 

We are having their party at our house and we invited a bunch of twins, plus family and friends. We are having pizza (the girls favorite), snacks and Minnie cupcakes. It is simple, but until they are a bit older, we want to keep it at home.
Minnie Banner
Minnie Decorations
Minnie Globes
Minnie Table Cloth


This is a hard one, but the first thing that comes to mind was Black Keys concert tickets, along with a hotel stay as it was out of town and all the drinks at the show. I got this for Rory a few years ago and it has been a favorite gift. I would love to receive this gift, but with my favorite band or one of the three bands I have on my wish list: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fights and Metallica. All oldies-ish, but goodies.
Tuesday, December 19, 2017

2017 Christmas Cards

It is finally time for me to share our Christmas cards. Everyone who was sent a Christmas card should have gotten one. So without further ado...
2017 Christmas Card

And for fun, here are our previous year's Christmas cards.
2016 Christmas Card

2015 Christmas Card

2014 Christmas Card
Friday, December 15, 2017

Friday Favorites

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We survived another week. It felt like a really long week for me since Rory is traveling for work. Plus the girls decided to wake up a few times per night and that meant I was the only one to console them. I soooo hope a good night's sleep is in my future tonight.

Onto Friday favorites.

ONE. Earlier this week I started wrapping presents for the girls, from us and Santa. Since the girls birthday is 4 days after Christmas, I have to buy more gifts and split them between the two holidays. I thought I had bought so much more for the girls, but after splitting it, I felt like I needed to buy more things. I already knew I needed stocking stuffers, but now I have been looking for more gifts and let me tell you, they have everything. Ha. It has been a bit of a struggle. I know, they don't need many gifts, and time with us is the best gift, blah blah blah. I get that and we spend a lot of time with the girls, but with two celebrations so close, I want to make sure they get to celebrate both adequately.

Anyways, I bought a few items on amazon earlier this week and I am hoping to buy these Vtech kids cameras today on the amazon toy sale. Please let them be a part of the sale. My girls love to take photos with the iPhone, so I think they will really love these.
Vtech kids camera

TWO. If you have toddlers that love Disney princesses, go to JC Penney's for their toddler princess dolls. They are the cutest and they are on sale right now. I picked mine up for $11.99 each yesterday. Normally $24.00. I got the girls Belle and Snow White. I wanted to get Aurora since she is my favorite, but she looked creepy.
Belle Toddler Doll
 Belle Toddler Doll
Snow White Toddler Doll

THREE. Since Rory was away, I had him go shopping during the evenings for Christmas gifts. When he told me there was a Tory Burch store, I asked him to go in and see what the sales were like. He told me the shoes I have wanted were on mega sale and this never happens. I told him to buy them for me and I will give him money. An early Christmas gift to myself. Ha. But in all fairness, he bought himself something during Cyber Monday even though we said we wouldn't. I can't wait to get these beauties tonight.
Tory Burch ballet flats

FOUR. The girls are having their Christmas party today at school. In an email I received earlier this week, it asked that we dress the girls up in their best clothes or Christmas pjs because there will be Santa photos. I seriously wish I could be there to see if they have the same reaction to Santa as they did 2 weeks ago. Maybe they will be better since we are not there? Who know, but I can't wait to see the photos. I dressed them up in Christmas pjs this time since I didn't want to ruin their dresses with arts and crafts, cookie decorating or the games they will be playing. So stay tuned this weekend for another Santa photo...if they can capture one.

FIVE. I had a couple people ask me about the teacher gifts I was giving this year and unfortunately they are not what I had planned. I planned to do something similar to last year's (here), but changing a few things. Especially since the girls are at a new school. I ordered everything and then we got a newsletter asking for cards with the children's photos in them and then you can add money if you would like. While I like the fact that they can chose what they want with the money, I would have spent more on the gift than the max they are allowing in the cards. But if you want a cute idea, this is last year's teacher gifts.
Christmas Teacher Gifts
Mistle Toes Gift Tags
 The tag that was on each bag
Mistle Toes Gift Tags

Have a great weekend!!!

I am linking up with April, A Little Bit of Everything, Meet @ the Barre and Cup of Tea.
Thursday, December 14, 2017

Girl Chat - Greatest Gift Received

Today is our last Girl Chat link up for the year. I have had so much fun learning about you all over the last 11 months. I have also had a great time co-hosting this Girl Chat link up. So please join me for the final one of the year. The topic is...What is the greatest gift you ever received?
Girl Chat link up

I answered a similar question in my TBB link up last Monday and I said it was my pink bike when I was about 7 years old. This was a pretty amazing gift and I still remember it. I love looking at the pictures from that Christmas.

But for this link up, I am going to get sentimental here. My greatest gift I ever received was my twin girls.

It took us almost a year to get pregnant (which isn't as long as some, but it was awhile for us) and then surprise, we were having twins. Fast forward a bit to their anatomy scan and we found out they were identical twin girls. I was due to have the girls around February 13th, but with them being twins, they had an eviction date of January 25th, 2015. But Sutton had other plans and decided that December 29, 2014, would be the perfect birthday. Even if Avery didn't want to come out just yet.

I had mild contractions on December 26th, but ignored them and took some meds and went to bed. Nothing happened on the 27th. On the 28th, we thought we should get stuff for the hospital since the girls were due in a month-ish. We went to Target, bought what we needed plus slipper shoes for my insanely huge feet and legs and went home. We had some Taiwanese food and then went to my in-laws house for dessert. I happily ate my brownie and ice cream and on the drive home, I got uncomfortable again. This was the second start to my labor.

By the time I got to the hospital, I was already and 4 1/2 centimeters and just under 3 hours later, I was at a 9 1/2 when my doctor made the decision to do an emergency c-section. The girls were going to be here very soon and NICU time was definitely happening.

I said my prayers and my baby girls were born at 2:37 am. Delivery was rough (read here) and recovery was even harder, but I had my two perfect baby girls. They were my belated Christmas gifts and the best gift I have ever received.

So here is to you, my sweet Sutton Kira and Avery Madison. Thank you for choosing me to be your mother. It is truly an honor.
twin family photos
A sneak peak from our family photos

What was your greatest gift you ever received?

To link up - just grab our graphic, link up, and let's getting to chatting!  Make sure to stop by a few others linked up for an extra bit of girl chat! 
Girl Chat Monthly Link Up

Danielle / Sparkles and Lattes - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram
Emily / A Little Bit of Emily - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram
Lindsay / Lindsay's Sweet World - Pinterest - Facebook - Instagram - Twitter
Lizzie / This Happy Life Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Facebook - Instagram
Sierra / Beautifully Candid - Bloglovin' - Pinterest - Instagram - Twitter

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

A Christmasy Weekend

As promised, here is a recap of our weekend. This weekend we were able to check off two items off our Christmas bucket list. We made sugar cookies as a family (with my parents) and went Christmas light looking.

Let's back up to Friday. I got home after the girls went to bed, so I didn't get to see them. We stayed up late watching the Nevada basketball game. The Pack lost and it sucked. Moving on....

Saturday morning we got up and it was really cold outside. I decided to bathe the girls since we wouldn't be home until late. It was the perfect opportunity to take pictures of the girls in their new twin shirts.
Twin tees - J'adore my twin

Recently, twins from the twin store, Twinning Store, contacted me about my featuring my girls in some of their clothes. I told them we would love to. They just asked the girls' size and sent us the cutest tees. They say, J'Adore My Twin (I love my twin). I love these shirts. They are simple, but so cute. So if you have twins, check out their store.

We bundled up and went out to breakfast. After breakfast, we headed to Costco to grab some necessities. You know, a new door mat, some wine, pull-ups (yes the girls still wear them at night), a movie and some laundry detergent.

After, we headed home, got the girls ready for their naps and then we settled in for some Christmas movie time. Well I did. Rory decided to walk Walter. Once the girls got up, we got them ready, got their pjs for the evening and headed down to my parents house where we baked and decorated sugar cookies. The girls had a blast decorating the cookies.
toddler cookie decorating
toddler cookie decorating
toddler cookie decorating
toddler cookie decorating
A few of their masterpieces

After decorating and cleaning up, my parents made dinner for us. We all ate so much and were so happy with our full bellies. The girls asked to go home right around 8 pm and so we did. We had a 45 minute drive home and the girls fell asleep pretty fast in the car.

The next morning, Rory went out for some muffins, bagels and coffee while the girls and I watched some Christmas movies. The girls were full of energy, but we had errands to run. We had to return some stuff to Bath and Body Works (teacher gifts that we are changing up), purchase some cooking things from William Sonoma and check out some bedding at Pottery Barn. The girls ran around outside with Rory while I did the shopping and returns.

We were on our way home and we grabbed some buns (asian buns filled with meat and goodies) for a quick lunch and then put the girls to bed. They went down easily. I went to the grocery store while they slept and then came home and they were still sleeping, so I took Walter for a walk. When I got home, they were up and we starting prepping dinner. The girls watched from the breakfast bar while I made homemade pizzas. We wanted to eat early, so we could go look at Christmas lights. The girls were a little unruly at dinner and we almost didn't go, but after a brief time out (for both girls), we went out.

We went to an area we usually don't get to, but we will make sure to go to this area of town in years to come. They had some amazing light displays and the contest was just the day before, so we got to see all the placings plus everyone elses. They were all out. We took videos and pictures and the girls were in awe. 
Hidden Valley Christmas Lights
 1st Place (they decorated the back of the house as well)

Hidden Valley Christmas Lights
 2nd Place
Hidden Valley Christmas Lights
Hidden Valley Christmas Lights
Hidden Valley Christmas Lights

Hidden Valley Christmas Lights
3rd Place

We headed home, put the girls to bed (tip: put the kids in their pjs, so they can go right to sleep when they get home) and watched the rest of Christmas Vacation. 

How was your weekend? Did you check anything off your Christmas Bucket List?