Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

Arrivederci 2015 and Buon Giorno to 2016!

So many wonderful memories made during this year and looking forward to a new year and new memories. No resolutions except to live the best life I can for my family and myself, that takes into account A LOT of things but I felt like that was the perfect way to sum up what I'm looking forward to most in 2016.

More of these happy smiles and good times!

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Philadelphia at Christmas

Love our traditions and the trip into Philadelphia is a Christmas favorite of ours...

First Stop: Macy's for the Light Show

Set to music, the light show is short but adorable and a great way to get into the Christmas spirit!

Next stop is Reading Terminal Market to take a peek at their fabulous vendors and the train display...

The promise of sweets is always a hit!

So much fun pushing buttons...

A family that Converse together...

New stop this year was City Hall for their adorable Christmas decorations...

Kids enjoyed adding to our Philadelphia Christmas fun this year!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Same place, different day

I love that we have captured the same spot for the past 8 years now with each of our children and Anthony. I love traditions and this is one that is an absolute favorite. An easy photo to set up on our trip to Alba each summer and something I love looking back through our pictures seeing how they were captured a bit differently each time.

Of course by now, the girls have come to expect this photo op at the apartment and I hope they realize one day how much it means to us to have these images. 

And the picture that started the tradition...Sofia Vincenza July 2007. In Alba for the very first time at 3 and a half months old. 

And a few from other years too:

Both Olivia and Mario's first trip to Alba, Olivia was 2 months old and Mario our oldest baby traveling to Italy for the first time at 6 months old.

Daddy's girl

Friday, December 18, 2015

Where did my one year old go?

What a year of having fun, jumping and running after everyone. 
Smiling, giggling, lots of laughter. Hugs and kisses, new sights, new words. 
Holding our hands, clinging our legs. Loving getting snuggled in our bed. 
Climbing up chairs, loving his building blocks. Chasing sisters around the rooms. 
Playing, reading, getting bold. This has been our year with our one year old. 

Bittersweet day for me as my youngest turns two. Each second of his two years in our home and in our hearts has been a blessing. It was only yesterday we brought him home and only yesterday we celebrated his first year. How can it be that today we're celebrating my two year old's birthday?! They don't lie when EVERYONE tells you it goes fast.

I love my little sparkplug, my little shadow, my burst of energy, my little man. 
Happy Birthday Mario Luca. Mama loves you.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Big Apple!

Another fun tradition checked off the list for the Christmas season...our trip to New York City! This year was an extra special trip because we were able to spend time with a dear friend recently moved to NYC from Mesagne. He is fitting right in and loving every second. The city suits him for sure!

My beautiful and happy girls love this trip each year and really look forward to it. Even with all the walking we do and sometimes dealing with large crowds and cold temperatures.

This guy loved the trip so much this year too! Climbing in and out of the stroller at each stop and taking in all the sights and sounds.

A perfect day trip with my loves.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

My big 6 year old loses her first tooth!

And just like that we go from all baby teeth to starting the ball rolling to adult teeth. Sniffle, sniffle. Why is time moving so fast?

This tooth was just about as stubborn as my beautiful and bright little girl. She was not interested in having it pulled or even touched. Thankfully it's out now and we're enjoying that little gap in her smile now. And her little lisp too. It's so cute! 

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Tis the Season!

Deck the halls! It's that wonderful time of year again and the house is decorated and we're enjoying the Christmas season. Stockings are hung (out of reach of little fingers), our activity advent calendar is up and in use (click here to see how to make your own)...

One of the earlier activities on our calendar was to decorate a gingerbread house. It was a mess but the girls had fun decorating and then later licking their fingers to clean off the icing.

A favorite smell other than natural pine is a vanilla candle stuck in a vase of coffee beans! Hmmm!

Mistletoe holder made by Anthony's mom...

A cozy corner in our breakfast nook...the wreath I made a couple years ago, super easy and adorable.

I love this train, also made by my mother-in-law.

Our tree which I love so much. Small and yes, leaning a bit, but perfect for us and our home. And far less ornaments since we have a toddler. And our books. We have so many Christmas books and I love it. And so do the girls, they are regularly in the living room sitting on the couch sifting through the books.

BAKING! One of my favorite parts of the Christmas season. These are super simple Brookies - Brownie Cookies.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Family Pictures

One of my absolute favorite traditions over Thanksgiving weekend is getting our pictures taken for our Christmas card. Scott always does this for us and they've always been amazing, real memories to hold onto forever. Even though I plan the outfits and picture location, you can't plan the sentiment that comes out of driving around with 3 kids and your brother trying to get a family picture. "Do we have to take another picture?, "I'm hungry", "It's cold", "Another picture, didn't we take 100 already?" and that's just from my husband. Ha, just kidding. But it's funny how no matter how you prep the kids for about an hour of their time, have snacks at the ready and on cold days, keep them warm while outside, moods are bound to hit a wall.

Thankfully, we do get our pictures done in a relatively quick amount of time since I already have an idea of what I'm looking for, our weather the day we went this year was perfect for being outdoors without heavy coats and the promise of lunch and trampoline time at my brother's house post-pictures was enough of a bribe to keep the kids smiling. And the husband smiling too.

Of course, we wouldn't have our tradition without including a couple outtakes from the shoot. 

Everyone looking in the same direction and smiling too!?!? I love it!

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