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{We are Todd, Jess, Liam, & Carolina at home and sometimes about.}

I absolutely love Rice Krispie treats… I have ever since I was a kid, and I’ve never outgrown it. At some point in the 90’s, they even came out with a Rice Krispies Treats cereal! Do you remember this:
image via Bloglovin'
Did you know I'm obsessed with marshmallow treats? Of any kind really? Rice Krispy, peanut butter, butter finger, salted caramel (recipe coming soon), and now Lucky charms! I LOVE them, but marshmallow treats are so dangerous - they feel sort of healthy because of the cereal in them, and then you can just kind of keep going back for more to get another little bite here and there. Bad, but so good. And since it's St. Patrick's Day this Friday I thought the kids would like these extra.
  Here's the link! I don't know if I just measured out too many marshmallows or it actually wants you to make these this marshmallowy, but if I do these again (correction: when) I will probably put in less than the 8 cups... maybe 7 or 7 1/2... but that's just my personal preference.
This week went so fast, and a lot - like a lot of things happened, but I don't think it flew by because we were rushing... I don't know why, but I do know it was a good week! We started Wednesday night church again - me with my Girlfriend group, Lina with Bible buddies, and Liam with (I can't remember what it's called) you-know... Wednesday night church.
On Thursday Carolina and I went to Kindergarten readiness night - can you believe it's happening? Why is it different with the youngest child. Liam I expect to grow up, but not Carolina, she's supposed to stay little. I just want her hands to stay tiny, and her lisp and cute voice to stick around, and her chubby baby cheeks to never leave...  But she is very excited to come to school with me next year and she loved her Kindergarten bag full of books, art supplies, and activities - she got right to work on them.
I think hope pray that nicer weather is here to stay for the most part. We had some BEAUTIFUL days this week - and maybe they weren't even all that nice, but compared to the winter we've had they felt like heaven. The funny thing is 61 degrees in Idaho means that people (not me, but some) will pull out their flip flops, shorts, and sundresses, but if it was the same temperature in SoCal everybody would pull out their boots and scarves. It's the truth! The kids really enjoyed playing outside at home, front yard for chalk, basketball, and scootering and the back for swinging, "ski ball", and nerf.
This little buddy came to Liam's game this week and wasn't super happy, but man was he cute!
Liam had a GREAT final game of the season! He scored 12 baskets and had some nice assists and defense... things? I still don't know all the basketball terminology. He really worked so hard this season and learned a lot - I know next year will be different because he will be the little fish in a big pond, but I hope he still loves it as much as he has this year. This was a great team, good coach, and in the end they went undefeated! Go Aces!
What a handsome boy! Can you tell I'm proud?
Saturday was crappy weather again and highly depressing, Carolina and I snuggled in bed and had a "girls day" for a bit and then I made myself clean the house - which turned out great because on Sunday it was GORGEOUS out! We ate lunch outside and let the kids play at the park and then took a long walk around the pond, I even got a little pink on my face it was so sunny! And then we grilled for dinner and the kids kept playing out because when you have nice weather you make the most of it!
But the big events around here were:
 A) Planning a fun little trip to Salt Lake withe friends for spring break!
B) Planning a trip to Maui this summer!!!!!!!! It was a Maui year - but we didn't think it was going to happen for us, and Steve and Linda made it a go!
C) Todd is taking a month off from work per doctor's orders under FMLA so it's all paid for. Praise the Lord! This is a definite answer to prayer - something is changing with his job! And even if it's not permanent I think it will lead to a more permanent solution/change for him. He badly needs this time to step away from his job and rest, recharge, renew... for his physical and mental health. He hasn't had more than 2 weeks off in the last 14 years - and he was always gone on vacation during that time. Having a month at home with nothing he has to do or think about or worry about will be huge. (And his doctor told him he could take 3 months, but Todd felt too guilty about that and said 1!) I know I could be jealous that he gets this time off and I don't, but I'm not even a drop of it. I know my summer is coming, and I get it every year - and really I just so badly wanted a change for him. Ok - well I'm rambling, but I just can't seem to find the right words to express my feeling about this - please continue to pray for him this week as he tries to tie things up and prepare for his leave which begins the 20th. 
We have 2 weeks until spring break, and a little break from sports for a couple weeks as well, and no extra school obligations this week, PLUS we might hit 70 degrees!!! 

Because it's technically still winter and it's definitely still acting like it... and because posts like these scratch a concrete-sequential itch...

Madewell purse - I seriously love this purse - it's my top favorite thing! I've always loved purses - I am the "bag lady." But I'm on a kick of finding good things that I like now and will continue to like because they are more classic and neutral and will wear well. So I'm committed to this purse! It's not a winter-only thing, actually I've been using it since last summer when I used some birthday money to finally buy myself a nice black purse. It's the perfect shape and size. I love it so. And, of course, I got my initials engraved on it :)

North Face parka - I'm SO glad I bought this before the crazy winter and all the coats sold out! My last coat was just a bit too snug, and it was warm, but didn't cover enough area for my morning outdoor duty. This one is light and easy to move in, but definitely warm.

Natori robe - I needed a new robe and I got the softest robe ever this year. When we had those snow days weeks in January I pretty much wore this 24/7.

Hunter rubber boots - another good buy before the snow all melted and there were 4 inch puddles to wade through! The tip is, these are kids boots! So not only were they on sale, but they were kid prices to begin with. Score!

NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint- I have been loving this light foundation lately, it perfectly matches my skin color, it's natural looking, it lasts, and it has SPF too! It is hard to find a foundation with all of those qualities in one, truly. I tried out many many free sample from Sephora before I finally purchased this one.

NARS Velvet Lip Glide in Bound - Apparently this "glide" (between a lipstick and gloss) is constantly sold out and I understand why! It's a very comfortable formula although it lays like a lipstick - it really is a glide. And the color is perfect. Not too dark, very natural, but obvious that you have your lips on.

NARS Goulou Blush - I'm obviously having a NARS moment. But really, I love this blush, it's more pigmented than any other blush I've had, and it's just so pretty. I just like it. Nars things are expensive, if this wasn't a free trial size I'm sure I never would've purchased it on my own.

Slow by Slow by OneVessel travel mug - This is a twofer - Slow by Slow is our favorite place in Boise to get coffee and it just happens to sell my favorite amazing travel mug! You can throw this thing around and it won't spill (good, because it usually ends up being carried in my school bag) and it keeps drinks piping hot for hours - no joke! Plus I like that it's smaller since I usually don't drink more than 8-10 oz. at a time.

doTERRA oils - This was in my last favorite post (summer), but I swear by these. If I feel like I'm or somebody in the family is getting sick, I start diffusing the On Guard and taking capsules like crazy and either a) nobody gets sick, or b) it's gone in a day or 2. I love the one for upset stomachs too. And just like diffusing them for the smells and the pick-me-up feel they can give.

TeaPigs Liquorice & Mint Tea - I'm not a tea drinker, but I'm trying to be and this is by far the best I've ever had. I don't like liquorice either, but I like this! It's sweet! And there's no sugar - it's the weirdest thing, but I mean, it's my favorite so it's got to be good.

Kristin Ess hair care lineI'm super pumped about these products. They are mid-range prices, but sold at Target, and definitely more affordable than high-end Sephora products BUT they do what the pricey ones do! For real! They are sulfate free, yet I feel like I can get them to lather and reallly clean my hair. I only have 4 of the products, but I'm planning on getting another ASAP. Plus the cute packaging gets me.

"Moana"/"LaLa Land" soundtracks - It's a toss up between these two, they are pretty much the only music that's been played in our house in the last month+. They cheer me up!
I decided there wasn't enough to tell about week before last. So I skipped blogging. Really, it's just the same ol' same ol'. I struggle this time of year. January is not so bad because you are enjoying just relaxing after the holiday busyness, but by the end of January through April it's just blehhhhhh. I'm ready for spring by February 1st, and I do not live in a place that supports those wishes. The gloominess gets to me. The cold is not my friend. And I wish that there was hope in the forecast, but there just isn't. 
I took a picture of sun shining in the window, because it's a big deal.
A bright spot in my week is spending 45 minutes with my friend Amy while our girls have their ballet lesson. I am very excited that we actually get to watch them in a couple of weeks - every other time we sit out in the lobby and can watch them on a TV screen, I think it's better that way, but it will be interesting to see what it all looks like and sounds like up close!
This little beauty.... 
We went to the Ash Wednesday service for the first time and for the first time got ashes placed on our foreheads. It was a long sermon and the kids were tired, so I wanted to leave early but Liam really wanted to take communion and get the ashes so we stayed - sweet boy, he was listening to the sermon even though he was so exhausted. Lina didn't go do it, but decided she wanted the ashes after we has left so I smooshed foreheads with her to share. We are attempting to really use this season of Lent as a time to focus, listen, and learn from God and His word.
Liam only has 1 more basketball game next weekend, I will be sad to see it end, I have really enjoyed it this year and I think Liam has really gotten into it and improved so much. I hope we can get him into a basketball camp this summer or something. But we decided to give soccer another try. It's been a year and a half I think since he did it last, but we are doing the Upward program this year instead of the Nampa one. I'm excited that he will have an activity to continue doing for the next few months. 
Todd's job is just terrible, it's always terrible, and yet somehow it seems to be getting more-so. Something has to give or he's going to crack, please keep him in your prayers - for his mental health, physical health, and for a change to present itself. 

Weekend before last we had a little Oscars party with a few church friends, that was lots of fun and the awards certainly was entertaining there at the end!

Our calendar this month is a lot more sparse, which I'm ok with, mostly I just want to get through the next 3 weeks until spring break! Not because we have anything planned though, not yet anyway. But maybe just maybe we will get a little getaway, or even better, sunshine!
Take an hour and make these delicious meal prep carnitas burrito bowls so that you can have an easy on-the-go meal ready for during the week!
image via FitFoodieFinds.com
I've wanted to recreate Chipotle's burrito bowls for a while - they are always delicious and feel pretty healthy and definitely very filling! Mexican food is probably our favorite type of food to eat and make at home, so I finally decided to go for it. I semi followed this recipe for the carnitas (I didn't have orange juice so I used lime, and didn't triple the recipe for the pork seasonings even though I tripled the amount of meat - it would probably be even more delicious if I had, but it was good as it was), also for the cilantro lime brown rice, and skipped the corn recipe and just used a bag of roasted corn from Trader Joe's - which smelled terrible but tasted great. I made some guacamole, bought queso fresco/cotija cheese, had lettuce, tomato, peppers, onions (for the others - not me!) and had lots of salsa. It. Was. So. Good. My only regret is not having more leftovers! Here is the link for the pin to all the recipes!

I don't even know what last week was besides craziness. Valentine's Day on a Tuesday and Doughnuts for Dads on Friday made the school week feel  l o n g.  It's always like that when the weekly schedule gets thrown off.
Valentine's Day was funny - we went to Brad's basketball game and then were starving so we got Costco pizza on the way home and the kids opened a few treats. Todd and I celebrated earlier so it didn't really feel like Valentine's Day somehow.
I was glad we didn't have extra plans for the week besides the usual. Carolina got better from the pukes but then got a cold again and I started to get a cold again, but DoTerra to the rescue; I feel fine now! We were really working for the weekend this week, woohoo for a 3-day weekend!  Really though, if it weren't for the weekend this week might have killed me - it's the weather you guys. I was made for sunnier locales. We had a few bright spots, but mostly it was just yuck and the weekend especially - we had a ton of rain and some crazy wind. We made the best of it and caught up on some Oscar nominated movies, I bought myself flowers...twice, had a Boise day, took the kids to a movie courtesy of the grandparents, and tried to rest and enjoy ourselves.
I just struggle with the gloominess, I know I'm not the only one. But it's making me DIE to go someplace. You can't get me out of here fast enough, and sadly I have no where to go until summer break at the soonest! I'm sure we'll fix that, but I need it done, like yesterday... Classic February.

Here's a very short clip of our week..

Now that we are on the other side of winter I can look back on these pictures with appreciation! But really, I forgot that I had them until I was getting Liam's birthday pics off the camera. They are epic enough (for us Idahoans) that I decided I need to post them for posterity if nothing else...
These icicles started out so beautiful...
 ... and then grew to jaw-dropping and deadly lengths... I don't know how many times our children were told not to walk under icicles in this two week span
 I had to try to get a few pretty snow pictures... but there's just that much to take a picture of around my house, and remember we didn't leave for basically 2 weeks

 Hee hee, it was so hard for her to walk in it with it up to her knees, but she had fun.
 Liam was way more into it, he stayed and played well after his sister had come inside.

 This was a few days later, I believe it was 7 below this day, even with the sunshine. But do you see those icicles?!?! They were longer than Liam. We were out knocking them down and Steve came over to shovel the snow off the roof so we wouldn't get ice dams.
 Knocking down icicles was a fun job, I'll admit it.