i'm on day 18 of vlogsgiving and just getting around to posting day NINE. trying to manage so much as a mommy, a wife, a business woman, a friend and falling "short" far too often than not can be SO frustrating. it can also be an incredible reminder of the GRACE we have been GIVEN and the importance of patience with ourselves and with others. it is crazy hard to practice patience with others when you have none with yourself. 

i've yelled at you (my babies) and attempted to dismiss you far too often lately. and, while it makes me feel incredibly guilty and like the world's worst homeschool mom the guilt fixes NOTHING. the reality is that i have been stretched, tested and under a lot of pressure but i ALWAYS have a choice. 

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tonight, we put up our christmas tree and i have to admit, I'm sad to feel fall pass by so quickly (sorry, no christmas pictures yet, I'm just not ready) !!! i am pretty sure that time is flying by and I'm having trouble figuring out how to slow things down a bit. my dear husband has been on a new job for three whole weeks now and i snapped a few photos for old time sake. it was his first saturday OFF in a VERY LONG time and we spent it doing "normal things" with BIG gratitude. 

the gratitude that I've felt since that first saturday OFF is most certainly a result of a change in perspective. he has had saturdays off on jobs in the past and i had no clue how much i took them for granted until they were taken away. i know that may sound bratty. i am aware that there are plenty of people that have to work long hours and through the weekends etc. but, its just not something that i want for my family. and, to have our weekends back again is pure GOLD in life right now. 

my perspective changes when i think of them... i often say to myself. what would i say to him/her if they were in our shoes...  experiencing the same challenges that life has thrown our way.... I've been thinking this way a TON lately. 

i want them to know that purpose is where the prize is and that perspective and progress mean so much during challenging times. this is random, i know. but, so key. troubles don't last forever. just keep moving forward, just keep walking, one day at a time. 

everything we did that saturday was so basic and i loved it! my dear husband washed the cars and the lady baby tagged along. 

she is getting so big so quickly and i don't have another baby to buffer the sadness of all my babies growing so very quickly. it sucks. 

there is a tree right outside of our front yard, that turns the most beautiful shades of fall and sheds all its leaves within a week. every year i get pictures of my babies jumping, laughing and playing underneath that beautiful tree!

every year this beautiful tree lets go of its gorgeous leaves with certainty that next year will bring new beauty. i want to do the same. i want to give out the best of me, all my love, all my gifts... with certainty that these beautiful parts of me will never dry up and always produce new and better each and every year. 

as hard as it is to watch them grow so quickly, i have to adjust my perspective, they are were my purpose lies and it is in them that i find my prize.  

i promise you, this average, basic, normal saturday... was the best thing that has happened to us in such a long time :) 

from syreena, with love


i have no idea exactly how we got here. i remember wearing her in my wrap and looking down at her face staring back at me. i remember staring so deep into her eyes and thinking, "i wonder what you will be like when you are THREE?" she was such a beautiful baby then and an even more beautiful little girl now. this morning, i plan on making her favorite breakfast, painting her nails, braiding her hair, coloring pretty flowers, playing dress up, opening our play restaurant for business and singing the Home Soundtrack at the very top of my lungs with her. but right now, i just want to stare at a few more photos of her when she wasn't THREE and was still my lady baby.

i can't stress enough how much having photos/videos/blog post + journal entries, bless me as my babies get older. like the story of her birth, and how different it was to have a girl, when i was having trouble adjusting to three kids, and being a newbie at doing hair, or when she turned three months old, and that scary time she spent nights in the hospital, up until we celebrated her first birthday!!! and now she is THREE...

my only regret is that i wish i had taken MORE pictures, MORE videos and written MORE blog post + journal entries. but thats ok.... there is always room to step it up a little :)

i love my little lady baby with all of my heart. happy birthday my precious little girl.

from syreena, with love


i'm getting ready to head out with the babies for the day. we decided on a kiddie pool fun day for the lady's birthday + we need to pick up a few small things for a little extra fun. i am also considering grabbing a few supplies to teach the kiddos to bake cupcakes, i'm certain that would make the best birthday fun for our little lady. any who, i took a few pictures of a few children's books i was considering to join our summer reading list and i thought i would share here on the blog. we love a great children's book with beautiful illustrations to match and i thought these were super fun. 

in related news, the kiddies + i are working on a few very, very, very, exciting projects that include our absolute favorite illustrator, our love of children's stories, and a little bit of our imagination. we are super pumped to share more along the way !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (a few extra exclamation marks for excitement sake :)

what are some of your favorite children's pictures books, old+new? and let me know if you'd like to see a post, or two, on how we maximize stories w/ complimentary lesson plans. 

from syreena, with love


last week, the boys were playing video games together. video games are not my favorite, and they definitely don't make me feel like a great mother inside. but they really enjoy playing them together and they, most certainly, give mommy some time to get a few extra things checked off of her list from time to time. i could hear the "oooooooo's and ahhhhhhh's, every few seconds with a few instructions on how to keep the teamwork going and the bad guys away. when, all of a sudden, i hear cameron say to kendall, "oooohhhhh yeahhhhhhhhhh! good job BRO!!!" 

im not sure if i can even explain it, but it made me so very happy inside. it also made me feel like time has been flying by, so i had to dig up a few pictures of them with their precious little baby faces to calm any anxieties about this whole motherhood thing going by wayyyyy too fast. 

can't believe this was them just a few years ago. my babies!

from syreena, with love


it is 8:00am on a friday morning and i just spent a super long time (over the last few days) sorting through pictures and video and i have so much to share. i really do have to do better at disciplining myself to share consistently because i love it so much. its funny how we find healing in the strangest of ways sometimes. there is a quote that i love, that pretty much sums up my need to create through photos/videos/writing etc....

" I am convinced that God has built into all of us an appreciation of beauty and has even allowed us to participate in the creation of beautiful things and places. It may be one way God brings healing to our brokenness, and a way that we can contribute toward bringing wholeness to our fallen world."

 ~ Mary Jane Worden

so heres, yet another memo to me to write more,to share more..... so heres to a quick story about a few sundays ago...

the boys went to a birthday party after church and we ladies, spent the afternoon enjoying some girl time together. its funny, because i think there was a bit of separation anxiety for my little lady baby. she absolutely loves being with her daddy and her brothers. i have to admit that she spent the first hour or so constantly asking, "where are brothers?, wheres daddy?" it was so very cute and so irritating all at the same time. but then i realized that it was my own fault. we are so used to doing everything all together that when we get a little girl time alone... we barely knew what to do with ourselves. LOL

we stopped by to pick up a few doughnuts (to sweeten to deal) and we headed home to find a few things to enjoy together. 

we had a dance party, played hide and seek, blew a few bubbles in the back yard and picked some fresh rosemary from our "sweet pea garden" to make rosemary lemon chicken for dinner. 

what i took away from our precious moments that sunday is that i want to do a better job spending one-on-one time with my lady. actually, i want to do a better job spending one-on-one time with all of my loves. 

anywho.... off to make breakfast and a few friday plans with all three of my munchkins today. 

from syreena, with love


the other day i posted on my instagram about how ridiculously exciting it is how well they have learned to learn together. even with the two years that separate them & their complete differences in personality, they complement one another. i just get to sit back and watch as each of them lets their strengths cover the others weaknesses, and it often takes my breath away. schooling kids of different ages/levels has been the biggest challenge for me. it is really hard to stick to a curriculum or a “learning path” for that matter. hard to tell when to be firm with them when i introduce a new method of learning something or when to let go and allow them to explore a topic/subject freely. i keep having to fight the urge to label them with a grade level or stick them into a specific learning style. its hard. but i have learned that they work so very well as a unit, as a team. i feel so blessed and grateful to God for the way they learn together. 

from syreena, with love


i say no to everything at first. I'm often tired and my mind is always occupied by task that need to be completed and thoughts of days ahead. but I've really been trying to work on being present. just the right here and right now. and the way my sister is set up...lol. she likes to bypass my initial "NO's" and take the plans right to BDH. and that is exactly how she played it this time around. off of work at the last minute, plus a beautiful day outside, equals a little fun for all in PHILLY!

thanks to tia, we got a quick picture of the five of us :) i have to start remembering to do this more, its just that it can be such a task to get all five of us to cooperate. the struggle??..... yep, its real!

we packed lots of snacks, set up on a bench nearby and let them roam. such a cute little spot in the heart of the city. must do this again real soon

from syreena, with love



i love family traditions! even the smallest ones. i'm pretty much in love with baby pjs and matching christmas pjs are an ultimate fav. this year we picked up some red and white striped jams to match their cousins and the little red tutu took it over the top. so fun. not much to say.... just really cute pictures

from syreena, with love