Sunday, June 23, 2013

10 Things I’ve Learned in 10 Years of Marriage–#8. Don’t Keep Score

Marriage Tip #8

Today’s marriage advice can work on two fronts.

The first one is…

#8. don’t keep score with your spouse

Come on! We ALL do it! Allow me to provide just a few examples to see if any hit home for you.

Example #1: It’s TOTALLY his turn to change the poopy diaper! I’ve changed the last 9 stink bombs!

And simply for your laughable entertainment while we’re on the topic…

Example #2: I’ve planned the last like 8 (insert your personal beef here…dates, anniversaries, Valentine’s Days, etc.), when are they gonna step it up and actually plan something?!

Example #3: He didn’t do anything for Mother’s Day, why do I feel obligated to do something for him for Father’s Day?

Example #4: I’ve been cooking and cleaning all day, can’t he at least do the dishes?

Example #5: She’s gotten her nails done, gone on a girl’s night, been to book club, and had coffee with a friend, shouldn’t I be able to go hunting or golfing?

NOW….do you admit to keeping score occasionally? Like I said, we’ve ALL done it! Heck, we even do it in friendships sometimes too. Well, let’s look at the reason why we shouldn’t keep score.

In a marriage, we vow to love and cherish ‘til death do us part, for better or worse. So while we might FEEL like that 10th diaper stink bomb is going to be the death of us, it’s really not. And while we might FEEL like it’s “for worse” if your spouse hasn’t planned anything special, chances are, it’s not as bad as it feels.

I don’t mean for you to be a doormat and let your spouse walk all over you (see marriage tip #9: speak your truth – there’s no reason you can’t talk to your spouse about planning something special, or doing the dishes, or getting a much needed night out), but essentially, let as many things go as possible. Sacrifice for your spouse as often as you can. Chances are, it will inspire them to follow suit. It will not happen overnight, but after awhile IF you keep it up, they will begin to soften and your marriage will mature. And even if it takes awhile, you’re not keeping score, so you won’t notice the imbalance as much in the meantime.

I obviously can’t speak to everybody’s marriage experience, every marriage is different and has its own struggles. That’s where perspective #2 comes into play.

#8a. don’t keep score with other marriages

Again, I think we’ve all been guilty of doing this.

Example #1: Man, they go on date nights like once a week! How come we can’t manage to do that?!

Example #2: He does all kinds of romantic things for her, brings home flowers, writes sweet letters, how come my hubby doesn’t do any of those things?

Example #3: They never seem to argue. How come it feels like we argue almost every day?!

Example #4: Her husband is so flexible! I feel like my man is so controlling.

Example #5: She keeps such a clean house, why can’t my wife follow suit?

Every person has their own background/upbringing/personality, etc. that defines them and their marriage. While admiring other people’s lives from afar might seem appealing, if you were to swap places, you might be totally miserable and discover all kinds of things you never would’ve guessed were involved in their relationship. And what works for others might not work for you in your own marriage. And that’s okay.

My husband isn’t terribly romantic (sorry hun, but we both know it’s true). But then again, I’m not one of those girly girls who desires to “be romanced”. I don’t want flowers, I’d just kill them. While written sentiments are sweet, it seems a bit too “schmoopy” for me. It’s not that I wouldn’t appreciate my husband’s efforts, but there are ways that I would rather see him express his affection for me. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t occasionally see another couple who is incredibly romantic and desire that for myself.

Per my husband…(I’ve been reading each one of these to him before posting, partially to make sure it doesn’t offend him, but also because he’s incredibly wise {in MOST instances} and I want to be sure I’m sharing wise, pertinent advice)…another area to avoid comparison is regarding past relationships. You may have dated a laundry list of people before finally getting married (or had a previous marriage). Don’t allow fond memories of those previous relationships to influence your current relationship and your perception of your spouse, because alas, you have chosen your current spouse for MARRIAGE (remember, ‘til death do us part?)! So stop comparing him/her to any old significant others!

So, if I just stay away from “keeping score” with other couples, I’ll be much more content within the boundaries of my own marriage. Instead, I’ll appreciate that…

  • My husband works hard to provide for our family – and changes lives in doing so.
  • My husband and I are equally content snuggling up together on the couch to watch a TV series as we would be going out on weekly date nights.
  • Our sense of humor keeps us laughing daily, and we love one another’s company!

I could go on and on…but instead I’ll wrap it up.

You made the commitment to your marriage and you need to fight for your marriage. By sacrificing daily, even in the little things, you will give your marriage a fighting chance. So let things go, and stop keeping score!

And one last-ditch effort to help this tip stick in your head. Let’s take a look at that scoreboard again…

Marriage Tip #8

Not only does it have the score, but fouls, too. So before you get all high and mighty on your spouse for uneven scores, consider that you might have committed some fouls and may not be worthy to judge in the first place. Winking smile

Thursday, June 20, 2013

10 Things I’ve Learned in 10 Years of Marriage–#9. Speak Your Truth

Marriage Tip #9

If you’re a fan of “The Office”, you’ll catch my reference on this one. And while the silly counseling tip “Speak Your Truth” was conveyed as obnoxious and cheesy, there was definitely some truth lingering beneath the awkward delivery. Winking smile

Let me explain how I learned to speak MY truth.

THANKFULLY Ryan and I took premarital counseling. If you’re not yet married, I HIGHLY recommend doing so. It gave us a great head start into an amazing marriage. And if you are married and never received premarital counseling, don’t shy away from counseling now! It can only ever help, so don’t think twice about it.

During our sessions, we discussed how we each tend to handle conflict. I discovered that I essentially played the silent game. And I actually tried to defend my position!! My excuse explanation was that I didn’t want to speak wrongly out of my immediate emotions, instead I needed to think it over before presenting my position.

Well…the advice provided by our counselor confused me at first. He explained, “You need to share what you’re feeling WHEN you’re feeling it, not after it’s had time to fester. If you speak wrongly or hurt Ryan’s feelings, he’ll get over it. He needs to understand it’s more important for you to share your feelings, than to wait for the right words. He’ll just have to learn to take it with a grain of salt.” Obviously not his exact words, but essentially this concept has made a tremendous impact!

I began sharing frustrations sooner rather than later. I would still think over my words, but would also start with something like, “I don’t want to be rude or blunt, but…” That way, he knew I was sharing in what I hoped to be a safe place, not wanting to offend, but merely wanting to correct misunderstandings or frustrations.

It definitely took a few years to correct my old behavior (and patience on Ryan’s part for listening…), but it changed the way we handled conflict. Instead of building up resentment and blowing up after holding in my emotions, we just discussed things a bit more often. To speak Pam’s truth (quoted from The Office)…

“I wish we’d started this exercise six months ago. My heart just feels so…blocked up.”

Thanks to our counselor, I didn’t have to let my heart “get blocked up”. It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely worth having a 5 minute petty argument rather than a 6 month long fight potentially scarring the marriage.

P.S. – RIGHT before bed when you’re both tired is probably not the best time to speak your truth. Winking smile

So there you have it, officially on the countdown of 10 Things I’ve Learned in 10 Years of Marriage…

#9. speak your truth (asap-the longer you don’t, the worse things will get)

#10. my husband will always take second place

And just for fun, I leave you with one of our engagement pictures…the time frame of beginning the journey of speaking my truth. =)

just for fun copy

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

10 Things I’ve Learned in 10 Years of Marriage– #10. Top Priority

Ryan and Becky on the lawn

Last week was my 10th wedding anniversary and BOY HOWDY have we come a long way! I am blessed beyond what I could’ve imagined, to be married to an amazing, Godly man.

I’ve had many close friends share their admiration for our marriage, and while it’s terribly humbling because we often feel we have just lucked out by finding our “soul mate”, I also look back over our 10 married years realizing how much work we’ve put INTO our marriage! AND THEN realize how much work we’ll continue to put into it! Alas…if you’ve ever worked hard at anything in your life, you know, it’s all worth it in the end!

There is absolutely no possible way I could share 10 things I’ve learned in 10 years of marriage in one, single blog post. Partially because it would be ridiculously long not unlike my previous post, but also because, well, let’s face it, I like to talk. So each of the 10 things will be given it’s own separate post.

#10. my husband will always take second place

Nope…you didn’t misread that.

I know, the most bizarre piece of marital advice you’ll ever hear, right? Winking smile Allow me to explain myself…

My dating life prior to my husband was…well…lacking I suppose.

I dated one boy very seriously for about 2 years between the ages of 17-19. It was that typical young love, obsessed type of relationship that Keisha describes in her song “Your Love is My Drug”…we were COMPLETELY consumed with one another to a fault. Even if you’ve never heard the “song”, you can imagine what it’s about. It was unhealthy. But when you’re in a relationship like that, you don’t realize how or why it’s unhealthy.

Anyhow, following our break-up, I basically didn’t date seriously until my husband. I struggled with insecurity, feeling like no guys found me attractive, wondering whether I would meet the right guy, or if I would simply end up feeling alone. Can you relate? Seriously…doesn’t nearly every girl on the planet feel this way at some point?!

After lots of long talks with God, lots of journaling, and some overall assessment of my life, I discovered this…

** as long as God is my #1 priority, I will ** always be joyful and at peace

So simple, right?! Riiight! Ha!!! It took years (and years, and years)of prayer, 2 years of dating the WRONG guy, probably 20 “crushes”, and finally giving up control of my life after humbly realizing God will ALWAYS make the best decisions for me (duh, right?! How lame that it took me 21 years to realize the creator of the universe would be smarter than myself!).

Recently when reviewing my journal from college, I took a trip down memory lane and look what I found on 3 SEPARATE entries in my journal: April, May, AND August…

College Journal

It was probably October of that same year that I had a conversation with God, a confession, really. I explained that my desire for a husband needed to take a backseat. I needed to realize and BELIEVE that if I never met the right guy, serving God would be enough, actually, would be more than enough, it would be amazing. I really became content that if it was just God and me, and my love of teaching, life could still be a dream. Just different than I’d planned or hoped.

Would you believe that my hubby-to-be got around to asking me out February of that following year? (Below was one of our first pictures taken together, about a month before he asked me out. Total hotties, right? Bwahaha!)

Baja - Ryan and Becky

God knows the reason for his timing, and whether my conversation with Him had anything to do with it or not, I’m thankful that He helped me come to that realization first. Not that my priorities don’t get messed up occasionally, but I strive daily to make Christ my top priority, husband next, kids….you get the picture.

(And here was another picture, again, prior to dating. Apparently he really had to see me at my worst before he felt comfortable asking me out! haha That’s a whole other story!)

Baja - with mine wheel

So there you have my first thing learned about marriage, even before I ever got married, or even began DATING my husband…

#10. my husband will always take second place…because god should take first.

Friday, June 14, 2013

My 10 Favorite Wedding Moments

Today, June 14th 2013, is my TEN year wedding anniversary!

I keep arguing with myself as to whether 10 years really is a long period of time. In one way, it feels as if it’s flown by! In other ways, WOW! A LOT has happened since that day.

I thought it would be fun to share my top 10 wedding moments with you.

I apologize in advance… (both for the LENGTH of this post, and the following)“back in the day”, digital photography was not a “thing”, so I had to scan in all my pictures for this post. The bonus? It was the swift kick in the butt I needed to encourage me to put my negatives on CD. I’ll be dropping them off at Costco tomorrow.

*Ahem*…allow us to proceed. I tried to “rank” my 10 favorite moments, but had a hard time committing (pun not intended), so they’re in roughly the right order, ending with my silly favorite moment. Most of them are not your typical “wedding day favorite moments”. Hope you enjoy!

#10: Dancing

Dancing 1

I know, some of you are appalled that this was only #10, barely making the list. I enjoy dancing, but am in no way, shape, or form…GOOD! And my husband? Well, we joke because our “first dance” should’ve been referred to as the “last dance”, ‘cuz I’m not getting any more dancing outta him not that we’re hitched and he doesn’t have to “put on a show” anymore!

BUT…I did have a blast dancing with all my friends and family! My amazing friends humored me by dancing to all the typical, cliche wedding songs. Yup…the best of the best including Celebrate, Best of My Love, Respect, YMCA, Ice Ice Baby, C’Mon ‘N Ride it (The Train)….with a dance train all around the tables and EVERYTHING! And don’t forget…Shout! The rule was – everyone had to be lower than the bride.

Dancing 2

#9: The Food

Reception - Pool Area

Here’s the first of many that don’t normally make the “top” list for weddings. =) Kudos to my parents for making this aspect memorable. It was certainly not cheap. ={ The buffet table is pictured above beside the pool.

Dinner was catered by Sun Dried Tomato in Laguna Beach. We had 210 people attend our reception, each of whom meant a great deal to me! I wanted to show them how important their presence in my life meant by providing them with a nice meal. And you know all the guests are hungry by the time they make it to the reception! Needless to say, Sun Dried Tomato came through! I’m hoping Ryan and I can make it out to Laguna to reminisce on an upcoming trip to LA. YUM! Notice below…hardly any food left on the table behind my gorgeous bridesmaids. It was cleared too quickly to make any of the photos. We downed our dinners! Hopefully the guests appreciated the extra effort.

Bridesmaids - Head Table

#8: Grandma in Attendance

Grandma and Me

87 years young she is in this photo! My Grandma played a significant spiritual role in my life and prayed along with my parents and many others that I would meet a man of God.

She even tried to hook me up with a lifeguard she led to Christ! Oh Grandma!

She had to travel at least an hour in the car to make it to my wedding and no doubt paid for it with pain in her joints for a few days. But it meant the world to me. About a month ago, I attended her memorial service. I will forever cherish her presence at my wedding.

Grandma - Ryan eye roll

#7. Music Memories:

Smooth Operator, The Muppets Theme Song & Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You


Music Memory #1: Smooth Operator

Music can make a lasting impression, can’t it? Ryan I joked that we didn’t have “a song” and had a difficult time choosing a song for our first dance. Well, music land was playing an evil trick on us the night of our wedding. As we climbed into the limo to head to the reception, our chauffeur decided that Smooth Operator should serenade us on our way. Seriously?! Does it get much cornier and obnoxious than that?

THEN…as we sat down to eat dinner at the reception, what song do we hear over the loud speaker? You guessed it – none other than Smooth Operator! (How did that get on our playlist?!) We considered firing our DJ on the spot, but instead had a small giggle at our now inside joke.

Oh yes ladies and gents…the joke continues. On our limo ride TO the hotel that night, our ears were cursed yet again with the tunes of Smooth Operator.

What fickle music gods cursed us on this day that upon arriving to the hotel lobby, we should be greeted by the subtle tones of Smooth Operator, the elevator music version. As if the limo driver getting lost on the way to the hotel didn’t kill the mood enough! Come on!!

I don’t think I’ve heard this song 4 times in my LIFE, let alone 4 times in one NIGHT! Every time we hear Smooth Operator now, a giggle is shared between the hubs and I.

Entering Reception

Music Memory #2: The Muppets Theme Song

I enjoy hearing bride & groom’s music choices at weddings. I think it can be very telling. Our bridal party had the pleasure of entering the scene to The Muppets Theme song. I will never forget the excitement of being introduced as Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Nicholas. My husband held up my hand pointing to my wedding ring. His forever, and he couldn’t have been happier. What a precious moment. (I’m sure my inner chuckle at using this song for our entrance has nothing to do with Ryan’s similarity to Statler & Waldorf…don’t forget my sarcastic nature here folks!! AND…if you’re true Muppets fans, you’ll get this.)

Cutting the Cake

Music Memory #3: Grow Old With You

As we began cutting into the wedding cake, Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You began playing. A favorite actor and fitting movie for the occasion, again, Ryan and I shared a laugh at such a pertinent tune.

Okay…sorry I kinda cheated with that one and squeezed 3 moments into one, but I had a hard time narrowing it down people! Onto the next…

#6: My strap popped off!!

Strap popps off - Kelly

Humor ALWAYS alleviates potentially stressful situations. A genius dress design turned out to be the cause of many giggles and thankfully no major wardrobe malfunctions.

To allow the option of my dress to either be strapless or not, the straps on my dress were attached with snaps. I liked the look of the straps and chose to wear them…until they began popping off with every hug. And there are lots of hugs on your wedding day lemme tell ya! =)

The strap would pop, I’d laugh, snap it back on and continue on my merry little way. It got funnier and funnier as the night progressed UNTIL it popped off as I gave my dad a hug following his toast!! Still hilarious, and now hilarious for my entire guest list!

Strap pops off - Dad

The photographer caught my reaction above.

#5: The Garter

Garter - with Ryan

Yet another inside joke (can you tell what our marriage is based on?).

This one requires a bit of backstory. My husband is lacking in fashion sense, he’s not ashamed to admit it. While we were dating, he’d wear this horrible, pitiful looking purple and white plaid flannel! I finally mustered up the courage to ask him where he got it and why he thinks it’s okay to wear it, to which he replied, “Someone left it on the floor of their dorm when they moved out, I inherited it.” Eww! Men!

Apparently he finally got the hint after me rolling my eyes upon first sight of seeing him wearing it each time and he devised a clever “good riddance” scheme. For Christmas, he wrapped up the flannel along with a lighter, giving me permission to burn that bad boy!

Unbeknownst to him, I cut off a strip of the wretched thing before burning it. I think it was nearly a year and a half before our wedding day (long before we were even engaged!). I kept it stashed until just the right time. My roommate sewed it into a garter for me to wear. Needless to say, Ryan was flabbergasted when he laid eyes on it! Pardon the show of leg, but…

Garter - with Kelly

here’s a better look at the garter…my maid of honor helping me get the garter “into position”.

#4: Mr. and Mrs. Ryan & Becky Roach

Bubble Farewell

My maiden name was Roach. It wasn’t as bad as you’d think. The jokes got old real quick and my reaction would be, “Really? Is that the best you got?” With that said, I was certainly not saddened to gain a new last name.

Contrary to the name typed on our new address labels printed and affixed to the bubbles handed out to our guests as they bid us farewell, my husband did NOT in fact choose to take on my last name. Can you believe that my mom, myself, and my bridesmaids all tied on 210 labels to 210 bottles of bubbles and NONE of us realized the typo on the tag: Mr. and Mrs. Ryan & Becky Roach (instead of Nicholas obviously). What a hilarious discovery as we prepared to say goodbye!

And if I may sneak another “moment” here as I share #4 with you. I always thought it was so sweet to have the “get away” car decorated as the bride and groom left the reception, but not exactly something you request, am I right? That’d be tacky.

So you can imagine my inner excitement as we happened upon the limo:

Bubble Farewell - Limo

I BELIEVE it was our best man’s wife that was the devious delight behind this heart warming surprise. Thanks friend!

#3: Best Brother Ever! Swimming, rototilling? He’ll do anything!

Reception - Pool Area

To say my mom and I enjoy party planning would be an understatement. We like to go all out. So you can imagine how excited we were to plan my wedding, my mother’s one and only daughter’s WEDDING of all parties! Anyway, we planned a lot of fun details, including floating flower arrangements for the pool on site at the reception.

Well, we didn’t anticipate placing said arrangements into the pool, only to have them all float into one corner of the pool, congregating like girls at a 7th grade school dance. We’re problem solvers. We’ll just attach fishing line with weights underneath so they stay put, so we thought.

Enter amazing brother. Apparently this was MUCH easier said than done. He was out there in his bathing suit swimming down underneath these floral arrangements doing his darndest to get them to stay put. He’d tie weights, they wouldn’t be heavy enough so he’d have to go back and add more. *sigh* What a bro! Anything for his big sis.

Aren’t they lovely though? Winking smile

We don’t have pictures of the other reason as to why he’s amazing, so I googled the pic above to help provide you with a visual aid. Our reception was at a private residence and, did I mention we had 210 people in attendance?! So we anticipated parking being an issue. We hired a valet service, but still…where to park all the cars. We chatted with all the neighbors to be sure they didn’t mind us taking up the entire street. There was one house that had a large grassy area out in front where probably at least 15 cars could easily park.

Only problem? There was about a 2 foot crevice running along the length of the grassy area. Easy fix with a rototiller, right? And the owners said, Sure! By all means!

2 days before the wedding, my brother and I are out there in 95 degree heat with a rented rototiller for 2 hours working on the crevice! Of course I wore gloves and took off my wedding ring, right? Bwahaha! Blood blister! Oh yeah! It disappeared before wedding day thankfully. =)

Scott and Me

Thanks bro! Love you to pieces.

#2: My Dad’s Toast

Dad's Toast 1

Yup, I’m daddy’s little girl. So when it came time for his toast, I knew I’d be a basket case. However, his words were priceless.

He had always joked about how he was going to lock me in the attic until I was 30 so I couldn’t date, because obviously no guy was going to be good enough for me. Thankfully he knew better, ‘cuz I would’ve rebelled, royally!

When it came time for me to attend college, wouldn’t you know I chose a hecka expensive private school. My poor parents! But they didn’t bat an eyelash and put me through all 4 years. Here’s what pushed me over the edge in dad’s toast.

He said that when I chose to attend Biola University, he knew that God was going to do something miraculous in my life. He didn’t know what it was going to be, he just knew something amazing would happen during my time at Biola.

Dad's Toast

“And here you are, Ryan.” were his words. Ryan, my husband, was that amazing thing that would happen at Biola. Don’t get me wrong, many, MANY other amazing things happened, but had I not attended Biola, I guarantee I never would’ve met Ryan. =) Dad’s approval. How amazing to know that your parents see what a perfect fit you are to your spouse! Wow. So blessed.



#1: Licorice Kiss

Licorice Kiss

Silly, but then our relationship revolves around sarcasm, so it seemed fitting. Once the ceremony was over, we went into a room so the guests could leave and we could take pictures. I tend to be hypoglycemic and needed something to eat!! All my bridesmaids, my mom, etc. had been super careful to make sure I ate plenty that day. So a piece of licorice was presented and the cliché “Lady & the Tramp” moment took place. I loved that I didn’t have to feel guilty or silly about acting on my hopelessly in love feeling. And I was now Mrs. Ryan Nicholas!!


To recap, and close with thanking some very important folks in making this day AMAZING…

My 10 Favorite Wedding Moments

#10 Dancing

#9 The Food

#8 Grandma in Attendance

#7 Music Memories: Smooth Operator, The Muppets Theme Song & Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You

#6 My strap popped off!!

#5 The Garter

#4 Mr. and Mrs. Ryan & Becky Roach

#3 Best Brother Ever!

#2 My Dad’s Toast

#1 Licorice Kiss


My mom and I often discuss how I wouldn’t change anything about my wedding day, even after 10 years! Too many people were involved to thank, but I do need to thank my parents, and Ryan’s parents. Thank you for an AMAZING wedding memory, to this day!

Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Dan & Rondalyn Roach!

Mom and Dad

& Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Whitney & Sallie Nicholas

Ryan's parents

Here’s to many years more…stay tuned for the next 10 days for 10 things I’ve learned during my 10 years of marriage. =)

Back of dress

Friday, June 7, 2013

Happy Donut Day!

Donut Day

I believe National Donut Day is always the first Friday in June. This is one we will probably never miss celebrating. It was a family tradition of mine, getting donuts on Saturday mornings, and who doesn’t love a good excuse to get donuts?!

I love comparing how we’ve changed each year…check it!







No Allie even! =) hehe THRILLED she’s with us to celebrate donut day. =)

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Hula Hoop Forts

Hula Hoop Forts

Thankfully, Cooper was pretty excited about this idea!

Reason being…it didn’t go quite as smoothly as planned.

I had pinned the idea on Pinterest and had seen 2 different version:

1. Using a shower curtain and hooks

2. Pinning a sheet around the hula hoop

Easy peasy, right?

Haha….well…I figured we had the shower curtain, why not give that a go. Well, try hanging that, and actually keeping a “fort” shape in tact. Imagine each time you climb up the ladder, the hooks all slide to one side of the hula hoop. Go ahead and laugh. I would’ve too if I’d been watching myself.

Also, if the hula hoop is not perfectly level, again, all the hooks sliding to one side kinda problem.

So, here’s the best way I found to create a successful hula hoop fort:



safety pins

hula hoop



step 1: Tie a piece of twine from one side of the hula hoop to the other, keeping it somewhat loose. Repeat on a perpendicular so you create an x, keeping them as close to the same length as possible (remember, must be level!) Gather the X at the top and tie together creating a loop.

step 2: Pin the sides of the sheet around the top of the hula hoop.

step 3: Roughly measure the length of your sheet, and how far down you want your hula hoop to hang from wherever you plan to hang it. Reason being, is for measuring how long you need to cut your twine to hang it. It helps to do this BEFORE climbing the ladder with the cumbersome hula hoop and sheet. Winking smile

step 4: Cut twine accordingly and hang. We hung ours on our back patio cover. The kids LOVED it and I would imagine it was that much easier seeing as you didn’t have un-level tree branches to deal with.

step 5: Put blanket and/or pillows on the ground and read some books! or let the kids go crazy pulling them all over the place.

I hope this was a helpful explanation. Here are some more pictures to give you an idea of what we did, and how fun it can be! Note – I used both shower curtains and sheets, but sheets will be used if we ever do it again, MUCH easier!


Here you can see the combo of shower curtain and sheet. I had nearly given up when the sheet came out, otherwise I would’ve pinned it more thoroughly. The curtain worked better when I hung it on either side of the twine, kept it from falling altogether at least. =) We hung two and they wanted them to connect! hehe



AFTER they went all berserk in there (this truly was what went on, look up the definition, it will make you giggle), we did finally sit down and relax inside the little “fort”. =)




Wednesday, June 5, 2013

First Hot Air Balloon Flight 230 years ago today! (I mean yesterday!)

A teacher at heart, I’m sometimes a sucker for a fun history lesson. And I know we’re a day late, I thought we had Up and didn’t, so I switched 2 of the days. =)

June 4th, 1783, brothers Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier made a public demonstration of experiments they had been attempting with success. They were prosperous paper manufacturers and had discovered paper bags rising when heated air had flowed directly into the bag. This first flight lasting 10 minutes had no passengers.

It was on Sept. 19th, 1783 that the brothers demonstrated for King Louis XVI. The king suggested using prisoners to see if high altitudes were compatible with life, however, the Montgolfier brothers had a much more clever idea in mind.

3 animals:

A sheep – because their physiology is similar to our own

A duck – the control, seeing as they fly without harm

A rooster – a second control, also a bird, but does not fly at high altitudes

The balloon was decorated with golden flourishes, zodiac signs, and suns (symbolizing the King).

In honor of the 230 year mark since the first hot air balloon flight, we watched the movie Up, then released a balloon with the following attached:

Basket and Animals

Hopefully we’ll pass on a little historical tidbit.

My kids loved watching Up while I made frequent trips to the kitchen pretending to get them milk or a snack while fighting back tears.

Watching Up

Watching Up from behind

Watching Up Insta

See our celebration from 2 years ago here…wow has a lot changed!