7 Tips to Make Baking With Toddlers Awesome

baking with toddlers

{this post may contain affiliate links for your convenience}

Baking with tiny humans. This either sounds insanely awesome to some or just plain insane to others.

And I am going to go ahead and admit, I’m in both camps.

But if it’s one things my kiddos love to do, is help me in the kitchen with ALL THE THINGS.

And with the holidays coming upon us at lightening speed, I thought I’d share some of my tried and true ways of having your tinies “help” you while you get your holiday baking on….

First things first….those expectations that this is going to be amazingly fun and your baked product is going to come out looking like all those delicious pics in a magazine?

Let those go right now.

I’m not saying your confections are going to be hideous, but letting go of the “perfection” or simply wanting it to look “pinterest picture worthy”, will make a HUGE difference in how you set out to make this whole thing work. And fun will definitely happen along the way, especially when you simply set out to enjoy your time together.

So, without further ado, here are my 7 tips to help baking with your toddlers this season {or anytime, really} more enjoyable for ALL involved:

1. Have a game plan 

Make sure you’ve planned out what it is you’re wanting to make, take inventory to make sure all ingredients are indeed in your pantry/fridge, etc. Trust me on this…theres nothing like being in the middle of batter/dough/whatever you’re making and trying to keep little fingers out and BAM, realize you don’t have the number of eggs needed. Or sprinkles. Or cupcake liners (if you use those)….

2. Have baking supplies/utensils/measuring cups/spoons and the like available that THEY can use.

baking with toddlers

I actually took a trip to our local dollar store and grabbed some measuring cups and spoons and even some pot holders that are theirs to use for pretend play, and for when we bake together as well. And they LOVE that they get to have their very own things to “help” bake or cook with. This year I also added a couple smaller sized rolling pins for them to use.

3. Plan for a time of day that works with them, as well as you.

Starting something right before nap time might not be the best option. My twinnies still take a nap after lunch, so we typically bake mid morning. But, do what you know works best for you and try to work around your littles schedule. Nothing like cranky toddlers and flying batter to make a mama want to run screaming from the kitchen! Uh….not that I’d know anything about that….

4. Along with making sure to plan for a time of day that works best for your kiddos, also make sure to allot enough time for the “helping”.

baking with toddlers

Recognize that what might take you 10-15 minutes to mix up and toss in the oven, is going to take easily 20 minutes plus with “helpers”. It’s okay. Embrace it and breathe.

5. Let them help. For real.

baking with toddlers

I am a total type A-ish person and I’ve learned to let go of a LOT since having children number 3 and 4. My twins have helped me see the joys in the “oopses” and the learning that can happen. So, let them help measure out, or dump the flour into the bowl. A little flour on the counter won’t hurt. I promise.

6. Have kid friendly items they can use.

If your kiddos are anything like mine, they love to use the real thing. So, sometimes having a less breakable bowl for them to “mix” their own ingredients in is super helpful and makes the process fun for both of you. This little tip has helped me be able to get my bowl mixed up faster, while still allowing them to help mix up all the ingredients and them continue to work on their bowls while I then transfer the batter (or dough or whatever I’m making), to the pan/cupcake tins or whatever you happen to be using for baking.

7. Be positive and offer up encouraging words to your littles.

And if you are making something that requires decorating, don’t try and “fix” how they’ve done it. Leave it however they put the sprinkles on…they will be PROUD of their work and will look to see if you like it too. It’s okay if it looks like the green sprinkles vomited all over the sugar cookie snowman and he looks more like the hulk than a snowman. Or if the gingerbread ninja got a happy helping of pink sparkly and flower sprinkles and looks more like its from Whoville, verses the stealth ninja that it seemingly is supposed to resemble. It’s perfectly and awesomely OKAY. Promise.

Now, turn on the light in the oven and sit down on the floor with your littles and watch the awesome and amazing goodness bake, while you attempt to drink your sorta hot coffee. There’s just something about watching those cookies or cupcakes (or whatever you decided to bake) rise in the oven and turn into deliciousness.

Once those baked confections are ready to come out and cool off, go outside or play an activity while they cool down, to help distract the anxious toddlers that want to EAT ALL THE THINGS RIGHT THIS MINUTE.

Once it’s ready, grab a cookie, sit at the table and enjoy the sparkly ninja and green monster snowman. Or pumpkin bread.

Do you love to bake with your kiddos? What other tips would you share that help make the process awesome?

Sometimes Life Requires Cake

There are sometimes events and moments in life that just call for cake.

Like, for dinner.

CakeForDinner

{Yes, dinner}

Yesterday was one of those days. Just as I thought we’d cleared the sickness train and were well on our way to family wellness land, it hit us again.

One child had been diagnosed with bronchitis earlier in the week, but then another went down. I noticed one of the twinnies was breathing a bit shallow. I watched. I listened. I watched some more….wondering “do I call or just wait and see?”….my gut told me no, I needed to call. So I called.

{If it’s one thing I’ve learned….always trust your instincts}

Turns out, my littlest boy had the beginnings of croup and an ear infection. Blech. Sure glad I called! We’ve done this croup thing before, but it involved a long night at the ER of the local Children’s hospital….no one needed to do that again. Nope. No thank you.

However, this meant a long afternoon spent getting two toddlers packed up and to the pediatricians office and then racing back home in time for the school bus to arrive with the older kiddos. By the time all that finished, it was after 4 and what I had planned to make for dinner I really wasn’t in the mood to make.

{it was pancakes. pancakes/cake, same difference, right?}

I was, however, really in the mood for cake. Like, serious craving for cake and icing. I actually wanted a cupcake, but I figured the other five members of the household might want one too. And I was out of cupcake liners….so I made a cake.

I used this recipe for the cake:

Homemade Yellow Cake 

which I love because it’s SO simple and doesn’t require difficult anything. And it’s tasty.

And I used this recipe for the icing:

Creamy Chocolate Frosting

Super simple and I had all the things on hand.

My oldest laughed and thought I was totally joking when he asked “what’s for dinner?” and I said cake.

He said “like pancakes?”

I said, nope. Cake, like yellow cake and chocolate frosting.

He responded, “mom, I like this thinking, keep going with that, it’s awesome”.

{also, this brings me to ask, do you say icing or frosting? I use them interchangeably, but, it makes me wonder, if there a correct terminology to either? I know, that was random. Happens a lot around here. Let’s blame the cake.}

I usually stick pretty consistently to the meals I’ve planned out, but I looked at the flour and eggs and realized they could either turn into breakfast for dinner in the form of pancakes, or make an actual cake.

So, cake it was!  I served some fruit on the side, so it totally balanced it out. That’s what I’m going with.

Dinner was actually awesome though. We all enjoyed dinner together after a somewhat chaotic day (more like week…month….). Definitely a fun memory for my family.

And really, that’s what it’s about….family time and enjoying each other and life. Even in the midst of the crazy.

Sometimes, life calls for cake. For dinner.

Day Dates…..What You Have When Night Dates Don’t Always Work Well for Your Family

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Sometimes we go on “day dates”, the husband and I.

When the bigs are at school and it’s just the littlest littles with us. Sometimes we’re able to get someone to watch the twinnies, and sometimes they join us.

{The funny thing is, when you have four kiddos, only having two with you seems almost easy…sometimes…}

When you’re not fielding bigger kid questions and special needs situations and arguments and LOUDNESS with all four kiddos in the van all at the same time, well, it can definitely feel a little more relaxing!

And sometimes, when you have four kiddos, one with special needs and the youngest being twin toddlers, finding affordable child care can be difficult. And sometimes night dates just don’t work out as well….especially not in our current season. “Date Nights” can almost be more stressful than helpful and can be more time spent trying to get OUT the door than you actually spend time being out TOGETHER.

So, “day dates” happen. And they’re pretty awesome.

Like this last week, we ended up with an impromptu Day Date, the twinnies were doing great, we had some errands to run, and well, we decided to make it a mini date! Sometimes, that is just the way it works. And sometimes, the way it works, is the way it needs to happen to stay connected.

On our “mini day date”, we had to drop off some books to the library. We used the book drop off that’s on the outside of the library, but my littlest little knows that THERE ARE BOOKS IN THAT BUILDING. She loves books. LOVES them.

She didn’t stop asking “can we go get books?” for the rest of the morning and again after nap time.

{she really really really likes books}

So, after our “day date” of running errands and enjoying some quiet, the bigs arrived home from school. I decided to take the oldest (that also really really likes books and was wanting to go pick some up that had been reserved) and the youngest with me on what turned into a mama and kid date.

Two dates with my people in one day….well, three out of the 5 of them at least.

{don’t worry…the other two will get their mama time too. Promise}

I don’t always have “big black” with me (what I lovingly call my DSLR), but there were some moments I was quick to grab my phone and used it’s handy dandy camera.

{seriously…WHAT did we ever do without those? Oh yeah, we used point and shoots..and had a phone…and…too many other things to juggle and balance…}

The photos above captured two of my kiddos perfectly in their element. My oldest and my youngest. My book lovers.

I loved standing back and just watching them navigate the isles of books. M and I exploring some books for her, then going to find her big brother and her running to him when she found him.

Having four kiddos spanning a fairly wide range in ages can be crazy and difficult and chaotic at times, but days and moments like these bring it home and remind me just how amazing it all really is.

The Coffee Dates I Miss The Most

Coffee.

I love coffee for all it’s amazing a wonderful benefits and how it helps make my bloodshot zombie mom-ness dissipate when my body fully finishes caffeinating.

But there is more to the story of my love of coffee.

My Gramms.
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My Gramms introduced me to coffee. She always had her cup all day, every day full of the dark goodness.

She drank it black. Always. So do I….perhaps because that is how I learned to drink it.

As I got older and was able to enjoy a cup along with her, we would sit at the kitchen table and chat about life as we drank our coffee.

It was our time together. We were the only coffee drinkers in the house.

I grew up, got married, had a family….but, we still almost daily got together for coffee.

It was our thing. Whether taking her to a doctors appointment and grabbing some as a treat at the coffee shop, or her making some in the percolator, knowing I would be coming over soon….we always had our coffee dates to keep us connected.

My Gramms also loved cardinals. She even had a little porcelain one sitting on a side table. I remember it always being on that table growing up.

When my Gramms passed away unexpectedly almost five years ago, I spoke at her memorial about how I would miss those coffee dates….I learned so much about my Gramms through those moments shared over a cup of coffee.

It wasn’t too long after she had died, that I got a new phone. I had a message saved on my old one from her….the last one she ever left, wishing me a Happy New Year. I never wanted that message to fade. Ever. When things were changed over, that message got lost.

I’m pretty sure I cried until I couldn’t any longer. I know it was only a message, but it was my message, to me, from MY GRAMMS only a few weeks before she passed away.

I was devastated.

When we moved a little over a year ago to our current house, I remember seeing a cardinal here and there. It wasn’t until we were well settled that I began to notice them daily.

She has never been to this house, but I know she’d love it. When I cook in my kitchen or bake apple and pumpkin pies for the holidays, I think about how much fun we’d have in this kitchen. We had so many laughs in my last one that was tiny and she, my sister, and I would somehow cram in there and bake pies for our families on what became our annual “Pie Day”.

Sometimes, when there is a (very brief) moment when the big kids have left for school and the twinnies are happily occupied for five seconds, and I am able to sit at the table and drink my (amazingly still) hot coffee….it’s not uncommon to look out the window and see one or two cardinals.

And I smile. And sometimes I cry…because I miss those coffee dates with my Gramms the most.

I sometimes imagine what we would be talking about these days…so much has changed in the past 4, almost 5, years. Three more kids and seemingly a lifetime of change has occurred in that short time. And there are days I want to talk to her so badly about it all….

Over coffee. At the kitchen table.

First Week of School Shenanigans….

First week of school shenanigans….err….recap.

No. Shenanigans.

Last week was our first week back to school. I know several that have already started back, and some that have yet to start…and we seem to be somewhere in the middle of all that.

So it was our turn.

It seemed to start off pretty good. I mean, except for the missing teacher packet deal and the potentially very scary backpack situation.

But, other than that, I felt we were SURE to be starting off right!

Hahahahaha….haha.

Apparently, the magical bus people that do the bus scheduling for the special needs bus, scheduled us twice. But, the second call said there was no drop off time listed….

It was too late on Monday (day BEFORE school) to call back by the time we’d gotten the message, so we figured we’d just check it out the next day.

My brilliant husband (no really…brilliant!) thankfully thought to ask WHAT school the bus was headed to.

WHA?? Hadn’t actually thought that it MIGHT BE TO THE WRONG SCHOOL!

(See? brilliant he is. SO smart. Me?….shh.)

A little backstory: she was transferred to a different school than last year, same district, so instead of the magical bus people communicating this to one another, they scheduled two different buses for the same child. Apparently, they are NOT so magical after all.

Bummer.

So, bus #1 was sent on it’s way WITHOUT our child. Bus #2….bus #2?

It never showed. We called. It was SUPPOSED to have picked her up. It did not.

(this is the part where we go Oh C R A P and shove two kids into the car, drop one off smidge early at middle school and then dash the other to her school)

Oh yeah. Middle School. My oldest’s FIRST DAY at Middle School.

::blink::blink::

I had planned this awesome breakfast and stuff. The babies slept in and I baked muffins for the Sunshine, and my oldest requested his favorite eggs.

I was TOTALLY going to be on this and make sending my kiddlings off to their first day of school AWESOME.

Instead, it was more like, quick! grab and apple and let’s jet!

(or something like that)

My husband (the really awesome brilliant one) was taking them, so I said “please, oh, please! DO NOT let the man child be LATE on his FIRST DAY!”.He promised and set off.

Texted me (from the parking lot. While parked. Not in a school zone…safety first you guys!) to let me know both big kids had been successfully dropped off ON TIME to their destinations.

WHEW!

By then, the littlest little were waking. I was enjoying my still hot coffee, letting them chat a bit, set my coffee down (that was one of my first mistakes…) and went up to get them.

First thing out my littlest littles mouth “my tummy hurts”…

Ohhhh

Clearly my twinnies didn’t want me to miss my bigs too much. Nope, they were so very thoughtful and decided to BOTH be sick.

Yes. Both.

By noon, both were sporting a fever, one with snottiness, the other with “tummy hurts”.

{End of productivity for the foreseeable future…}

Get a text from the husband saying drop off for Sunshine is going to be the same time as oldest child gets out of school. And since he did NOT want to take the bus the first day, this was going to be a bit challenging.

I can do this. Surely….maybe the magical bus people will drop off early like last year??

Maybe.

Just kidding….they were late and thankfully the hubby made it home to meet her bus while I took the not so feeling well twinnies to get their big brother.

Yeah. That was NOT the best plan. Remember “tummy hurts?” I will not go into great detail here, but she puked.

Twice.

My only child to have never tossed any cookies did so. TWICE. Once on the way there and once on the way back.

(I kinda lied about not giving details there, huh? At least you weren’t in the car with me…)

By the end of the day, I wasn’t quite sure if I should laugh or cry or both.

And that was only day one.

Day TWO:

correct bus shows up.

YAY!

Sent wrong lunch with wrong child

Boo!

Twinnies still not so great, make doctors appointments. Decide to take the missing sammie to child missing it on the way to take the twinnies to the doctor. Forget sammie.

{can I PLEASE get a do-over yet?!}

Decide there’s just enough time AFTER appointments to race home and get it to child at school JUST IN TIME for lunch.

Whew.

By day three, things were starting to even out. Twinnies were finally on the upswing and no other children caught whatever the viral bug from hell was.

That was, until Friday when mama got hit. Yes, me, I got sick.

Let’s just say, we were dragging across the finish of the last day of school….of only the first week.

I’m not even sure I want to look at this week yet. But, here it is…

Someone tell me that this means that this year is gonna ROCK. Like, that the harder the first day or week is, just means AWESOMENESS is right around the corner?

Back To….Already?!

I know, I know.

It’s August. Already.

I know some have already started heading back to school, but where we are, we’re starting to wind down the last couple weeks of summer.

{counting down, if I’m being completely honest. This summer has kicked my butt!}

And in just a couple weeks, my two oldest kiddos will be heading back to school. One to middle and one to second grade.

{I might still be in a bit of denial about the middle school thing…}

Which, of course means thinking about getting all that school gear together and checked over and assess what will still work and what needs to be replaced.

And lunches. Lunch containers and bags are pretty well used around here, so durable is a must.

I have to say, as far as lunch containers go, THESE have been a favorite. We’ve actually used them for the past three years and they have been FABULOUS! Especially for my little one with special needs. I get asked about them often, so I figured I’d just write a post about them and share why we love them so much.

{and in absolute full disclosure, this is not a sponsored post, just me simply sharing things I love that have been helpful for my family…there are some affiliate links, but it costs you nothing to click and helps add a little extra to my sanity…err…coffee fund}

These actually fit well in the pottery barn kids lunch box my daughter uses. She’s pretty hard on her lunch bag and backpack and we’re about to enter year three on the same backpack AND lunch box, so I have to say it’s been worth the investment. And the Easy Lunch Box containers have endured as well. Bonus!

Probably one of my favorite things, other than that my daughter can open and close them easily herself, is that I can make up her lunches for the week and stack them neatly in the fridge and VOILA! Lunches made for the week easy peasy. They store well, too, when not in use and don’t take up much room. The lids stack nicely and then I stack the bottom part of the containers on top of those. Seriously makes school lunches way easier for us.

And I am ALL for things that help simplify my life!

Here are my Real Life pics of how I store them when not in use:
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And when in use ready for the week:

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I’m actually able to stack two rows of these for both my big kids. My oldest makes his own lunches (woohoo!) and stacks his up in the fridge.

And, thankfully, these lovelies helping to simplify things a bit more, leaves me more time to try and finish my hot coffee before my twin toddlers tackle me!

Haha! Just kidding. I’ll still be reheating my coffee for a few more {ever} years….

That Time I Chose Not To Wipe The Fingerprints Off….

It was after a long string of bad/sad/mad news.

My FaceBook feed seemed to read more like a hallmark movie, turned horror film, turned everyone dies story.

Or something like that.

I had bought some new-to-me dining chairs for the kitchen table. The old ones were still in good shape, but we needed to add two more..since the two pairs of little feet added to our family would, sooner than later, be sitting with us at the “big” table…and I happened to find SIX of the same style chairs all together from one place. And they cost less all together than two of the same type of chair brand-spankin-new would cost. Total win!

They had this lovely {nothing against this color, mind you} shade of forest green that was oh so the rage in the 90’s. And it was a bit chippy. But not the stylish distressed type, but more like clearly well used and loved chairs type.

Previous to finding these awesome new-to-me chairs, I had debated back and forth weather to get six different styles of chairs and paint them all the same color, or all different colors….OR get all the same (or similar) styles and paint them each a different color.

When I spotted these, I decided to paint different colors, but let my two oldest pick the color they most wanted {within reason-ish}….they chose green and pink. I was able to locate relatively close shades in moss and coral. It works.

I chose a teal and mustard yellow for the other chairs. My littlest little kept trying to take her big sisters chair, so I decided to paint hers the same color. It’s totally working so far…

I got some strange looks when I said I was painting the chairs different colors instead of more coordinating, but it’s okay. People also thought I was crazy when we moved into this house a year ago and I took the big kids to the paint store and let them pick out their own paint colors for their new rooms.

I’ve heard “you’re brave” more than once. And “I could never let them do that! I have a certain way I want my kids rooms to look, so I choose for them”…

{okay…}

I decided my kids were only kids once, and this is the one personal all their own space to retreat from the craziness of our loud and silly family…and it’s only paint. I let it go and let them choose.

And WOW, the colors have a glow to them at certain times of the day, but it’s okay. I actually love seeing their personalities in the paint colors they chose. Except maybe when I have a head-ache and the glow gets to be a little much…

So. Chairs. I decided to paint the chairs all kinds of different colors. When I was painting the first two chairs the teal color, I learned about an amazing person that was losing her battle with cancer. I didn’t know her personally, but I heard she had kiddos similar in ages to mine and it just hit me hard.

I remember the tears streaming down my face when I read she had finally lost her battle. I kept painting those chairs….thinking about my kiddos. Thinking about me as their mama.

I thought about how life is too crazy short to worry about perfect. Life is too short not to have colorful chairs.

When I had finished painting the chairs, but hadn’t put the wax coating on them yet, the twinnies had had some blueberries with their lunch and, before I could get their adorable little blueberry hands cleaned up, they had climbed into one of the chairs. My chair, actually.

The one I had painted my Gramma’s favorite mustard yellow color.

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And there they were. Little blueberry finger prints.

I went to wipe them off and stopped myself. I knew the second I wiped them clean, I’d regret it.

So I left them. Then I waxed over them.

I don’t want perfect. I want my house and life to reflect who we are. Who we are as a family.

I decided to let it go and embrace it. And I know, ten years from now, I will love seeing those little blueberry fingerprints and remember the way my littlest littles were that put them there.

I will remember how I wanted to keep letting go and just enjoy the moments we were living. The way life was RIGHT THEN. Enjoying my kiddos and learning more and more of their personalities and letting them be who they are.

Life is too short. Too insanely crazy short not to let a little color intertwine and make things a little brighter.

Here’s to learning and deciding to let go and just live!

The Shortest Longest Summer Ever

We’re entering into our second month of school being out and it’s been one of the most challenging summer breaks ever.

And emotional.

The twinnies are super crazy active and into anything and everything and learning new skills (like climbing, moving chairs, stealing crayons from their older sister…), definitely taking things up a notch in the creative parenting department for me…

My oldest girly needs a lot of one on one attention. The past two years, she’s qualified for extended summer schooling for special ed. This year, they decided she is retaining better and “they think she’ll be fine”, so-to-speak. Which, is both YAY! and c r a p.

Yay, because she has made some awesome strides this past year. And had some setbacks, as is typical for her. She’ll progress awesomely in one area, only to regress in the other. Not so yay. But still…Progress!

The c r a p part, because keeping her challenged and the babies entertained is not an easy task. In many ways and areas, they are catching up to her, which definitely is presenting some additional challenges. And typically, so far this summer, M wants to color more than anything else. Which means, the twinnies want to color. Which means me trying to sit at the table and we all color together.

Except, then, M gets anxious, they keep trying to take ALL THE COLORS, and someones paper inevitably gets crinkled and a meltdown by one of the three will occur.

So, I’ve been working on activities and such that the littlest littles can be a part of as well.

Meanwhile…it’s also the last summer before my biggest big goes to middle school. It’s been a pretty big and important task of making sure he simply gets to BE A KID.

I have found this is not always easy. But I’m trying. We’re making sure to get some fun activities for him and hanging out with friends and swimming and just chilling.

And here’s the thing, this summer? I know it’s going to zoom by! In one way, it feels like the longest summer ever in front of me. Yet, here it is July and over a month of the summer break has past and come August, it’s back to getting ready for school and all the middle school stuff that will be happening then.

And I am so not ready. It’s different this time. It feels different and it IS different. Life is changing and growing and relationships adjusting into a new phase. A phase I knew was coming, but wasn’t quite ready to hit. I don’t think a mama ever is truly ready for these changes. We simply have to take them and process them as they come…because there’s no stopping it.

So, I am embracing the chaos that is the everyday of all the kiddos being home and I am learning to let go of a lot and just let things be {except for all the planning it takes to keep some routine for my oldest daughter and prevent the meltdowns…}.

I feel it…the shortest longest summer ever.

Two Turning TWO

The twinnies turn two next week.

I’m not ready for it.

I’ve been in this state of limbo between wanting to slow time down, but enjoying all the new discoveries they make as they barrel towards two.

Each month, each week, each day we’ve inched closer and closer to two…all the changes and new things and watching them grow and discover and learn…it’s been amazing and heart-wrenching all at once.

They are my last, biologically, that will be. I will never again carry a baby and feel it kick me as it grows and prepares to enter the world.

I will not breastfeed one, or two, babies again in my life.

That season has come to a close and my heart, and uterus, are feeling the aches of knowing that season is passing and has past.

I want to hold on. I want to snuggle my newborns and inhale them.

Yes, I know the exhaustion that comes from both a singleton and newborn twins. It’s a blur and we.were.so.tired.

Oh, but the effort and extreme exhaustion were totally worth it. And I can say that now that I’m through it.

Then? I just wanted to sleep longer than 40minute stretches between nursing and pumping and starting all over again.

{And coffee. Copious amounts of coffee}

But now? Almost two years later…I am looking at my babies. Well, they’re not so much babies anymore, are they?

They are full blown toddlers headed towards being pre-schoolers all too quickly.

And I just want to hold on. I keep saying that, I know. But I do.

I want to always remember them this little. I know how fast it goes, my oldest is 10 years older than the youngest two…I get it. I really do know how quickly it passes.

I also know how insanely busy and crazy it can feel and how you just want to bust out and have 5 minutes alone.

But right now? I just want to immerse myself in their littleness. Letting them be little and seeing them discover so much around them.

But, oh, how my heart still aches knowing they are my last littles.

The difference between my oldest turning 2 and my twinnies turning 2 is such a world of difference.

With my oldest, there was hope more would happen and become. So much time stretched in front of us.

With the twinnies? Ohhh….this is it. We’re entering into a new phase of parenthood and it is both wonderful and gut-wrenching.

So, right now, I will hold on and attempt the best I can to dig my heels in and slow time, knowing I can’t, but trying my best anyhow. And I will hold and snuggle my growing bigger every second toddlers…and next week, on their special day, I will bake cupcakes. We will sing happy birthday and eat Mac & Cheese (their current favorite) for dinner, and we will CELEBRATE them.

And later I will hide in the pantry and cry. Because I’m a mama and I can.

What Not To Eat Before Heading To Your First Kickboxing Class

I finally decided it was time. A new kickboxing place had recently opened up about 10 minutes away.

{I’ve been wanting to do this for a while}

I signed up and had my first class scheduled.

I so wanted to chicken out. I was nervous, I was anxious….

But, I committed and I was determined to go.

However, on the day of, about an hour before, I almost completely forgot! It just so happened to have fallen on the last week of school. Not entirely sure WHAT I was thinking when scheduling it.

“Oh, that day? Sure! It’s only the night before my oldests 5th grade graduation. No problem! I don’t want to be able to walk the next day anyway….”

And, on top of all that, there was like a bazillion million things to accomplish.

Like, say, your son tells you he wants to wear a tie! {he currently didn’t own one} Oh, and “mom, don’t forget about the cookies you said you’d make to pass out for the summer birthday deal”….oh yeah. That.

{I had, indeed, forgotten. Super mom I am not, but I had to pull that cape out and get to work! I had promised. And I’m seriously not the crafter/baker queen, for realz….}

So, back to the kickboxing…

There was a party for all the 5th graders and I took him. It was an awesome time for the kids and a nice little getaway for mom. Dad had the other three, so it was just me and the oldest.

Then, on the way home, I was all “lets stop for coffee” and did so. Then realized, as I saw the cross fit people in the parking lot that I HAD SOMEPLACE TO BE in like 30 minutes! Oops.

{mad dash home, shimmy-shake-jiggle into my sports bra I’d bought pre-twins and hadn’t used much since then…ya know, breastfeeding twins and all that jazz….threw on some clothes, grabbed a water bottle and dashed to class…Oh yeah, and ate a half piece of leftover fried chicken that we normally never eat, but had leftovers sent home with us from MIL, and that was literally all I had time for. And it was off my husbands plate…let’s just say, not a great choice.}

Arrive, sign in and fill out paper work stuff. Get my gloves and get ready for what I’m told “the first 15 minutes is hell”….

GrrrEAAAtt…

And it was. That half piece of fried chicken? It almost made a second appearance.

Lovely.

And the instructors? They are like babies. Okay, they’re in their 20’s, but like more than a decade younger than I am.

And fitter.

And since having 3 bio babies, two being twins, my body is NOT.THE.SAME. Like, at all.

I cannot move the way I once did. My hips? So NOT the same since twins. Coordination in my late 30’s? NOTHING like it was when I was in my 20’s.

You guys, I felt OLD.

I’m not used to being “the oldest” or the “older” person in the room. And I wasn’t the oldest, but I sure wasn’t the youngest.

But here’s the thing…age? It really is just a number. And my body? It’s brought 3 tiny humans into the world and traveled oceans to bring home another to our family through adoption.

I am not the same as I was.

And here’s the other thing….I’ve accepted it. That my body is different and that I simply CANNOT do what I once did. And I have to modify some things. But, I’m also not going to let that stop me.

So, I sucked it up and went for it. And it.was.awesome! I mean, I totally felt like I was going to hurl in that first 15 minutes {and I am NOT a puker, folks}, but by the end, I was hooked!

And I signed up for 5 classes, so I have 4 more times to get my butt kicked again.

But, the fried chicken will not be joining me. I’ll stick with my green smoothies before and after class.