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Last week Jon and I finished making the kids a homemade sensory table for their art room, and ever since they have been asking to play with it non stop! For those who haven't been exposed to the Pinterest sensation of kids sensory activities, I thought I would share a little bit about our table and what we like to do with it.

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Categories: lifestyle,


By the time you read this, I will be in Arizona spending a long weekend with my parents and my sister and her family. This is not my vacation, it's simply the wrap-up to what proved to be the kind of vacation I think I'm going to take every year from now on. 

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Categories: parent-stories,


I love to create, and since we have so many extra bedrooms in our rental, I wanted to design a space that both the kids and I could create in together. I think it's so important for children to be able to explore art and to create without so many rules... but I admit, I'm a bit of a neat freak. So, I wanted a space that would be easy for me to have peace of mind in giving them access to things like paint and glue because the mess is contained and easy to tidy up when they finish.

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Categories: lifestyle,


"Mom, there's something wrong with Tippy. She's licking everything and she looks tired." My heart sank when my 12-year-old said these words to me. 

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Categories: parent-stories,


Well, it's already mid-June and you know what that means, it's almost Father’s Day. I've been mulling this blog around in my head for weeks thinking about what I want to say and how I want to say it, and quite frankly, it's hard to put down everything I want to write about dads. Part of me goes down a nostalgic path, other parts lead to sentimental feelings, while for the most part, I think about everyday life and how my husband impacts my boys' lives.

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Categories: parent-stories,


I know it's sad, but I love a good commercial. As sappy as they are a Hallmark commercial about a teacher's impact on her students makes me tear up every time. With Father's Day right around the corner, I stumbled on a few other ads honoring dads that made me smile and there may have been that first choke up of a tear for the Oreo commercial.  Hope these make you smile and give your dad/grandpa/husband a hug.

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Categories: parent-stories, lifestyle,


Have we finally come out of our long Nebraska winter? I have to admit, this one has been particularly hard on me. Every time I felt like we were breaking through to spring, we've been hit with just one more reminder that we cannot depend on Nebraska weather.

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Categories: parent-stories,


As a parent, it's not always easy to make time for yourself much less your relationship with your significant other. There's always something to be done whether it's activities, work, cleaning, helping with homework, and the daily drudgery of everyday life. But, the time we grant to ourselves is probably one of the most important things we can do to re-charge.

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Categories: parenting, parent-stories,


We are so excited to announce that our Amalia has had her baby boy! Bastian Oliver Van Bloom was born on April 24, 2013 weighing 7 lbs 11 oz. Mom and baby are doing well under the care of the wonderful doctors, nurses and staff at Methodist Women’s Hospital. And, her husband, Brian, is a very proud new papa.

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Categories: pregnancy, parent-stories,


Mollie wrote a great post over at Omaha Family for getting yourself prepared for Spring Cleaning. The idea of spring cleaning can be overwhelming. She helps you to take it one step at a time and thoughts on getting the family involved. I think I'll stop by her house after family does the spring cleaning for a slice of a pizza.

Below is a downloadable checklist to get you started on the process. What other things do you take care of during this season?

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Categories: parenting, lifestyle,


Being a mom has been something I always knew I wanted. It may seem corny, but it's the truth. Most people have practice acting out the role of a mom or dad throughout their lives.

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Categories: pregnancy, parent-stories,


Every morning, no matter how crazy the day has started, I give both my boys a hug and an "I love you" as they walk out the door to school. I know it's not always going to be this way. In more recent years, if the front door is open, my older one will insist on saying his goodbyes in the kitchen where no one who might be driving by can see his mom show him affection. Both boys know that I will always say this at the beginning of every day, even if I don’t get an "I love you" in return. And that's okay.

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Categories: parent-stories,


When writing a birth plan, you have to remind yourself and your partner that it's just a "plan". Things aren't always going to turn out perfect or exactly how you want them to go. BUT with that being said, I have always felt there is no reason to panic, worry or be negative about your birthing experience. 

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Categories: pregnancy, parent-stories,


For someone who has an opinion on just about everything, I have to admit, the whole bullying topic makes my head bounce around. It seems that every day I read another tragic story about some poor kid who has killed himself because he/she was bullied and it just makes my heart break. I want to reach out to these kids and let them know that life is never that bad and that what ever they are going through is just temporary. I want to reach out to the parents, school administrators and social media and give them a firm "How did you let it go this far?" I want to know if the message we are sending to our kids about bullying is actually sinking in.

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Categories: parenting, parent-stories,


Just because you are having a boy, doesn't mean you have to skimp on fashion. My husband actually likes fashion and enjoys dressing nice. So why not dress your little dude just like dad? How cute would it be to see a little mini me walking next to dad. I know I will be very tempted to dress our son just like his dad. No matter what kind of duds dad is into, there should be a little stud outfit to match.

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Categories: lifestyle,