Memorial Journal

Confession: My mom passed away suddenly a little over two years ago. I’ve slowly been dealing with my grief over this time period, but this post isn’t about me. It’s about my two kids. My mom’s only grandchildren. The kids she took care of while my husband and I worked outside of the home.

When this tragedy struck my family my children were two and four. Still in diapers. Still babies in my eyes. My son, the oldest, remembers more about my mom. She took care of him since he was an infant. He has a longer list of memories with her but recently he mentioned that he couldn’t remember somethings about her.

My husband and I have made an effort to keep her memory vivid in our house for us and especially for our kids. Photos of my mom are everywhere. We speak about her a lot. And we tell the kids stories. We want them to remember her forever. She was, after all, a huge part of their lives.

When my son mentioned he doesn’t remember somethings it gave me a swift kick in the butt that I needed. Right after I lost my mom I ordered a notebook. A notebook from one of those photo gift sites. I added photos of my mom to the front. Since then, it has been collecting dust. Over this time period my daughter grabbed it and stuck stickers on every single page. I was surprised she had that much patience and I was happy with it, because it’s something my mother wouldn’t have minded.

I’ve been jotting notes in it here and there. Creating a memorial journal for my kids. Collecting memories, thoughts and events that involved my mom for my kids to have. This is something they can treasure and have to remember her and to go to when they miss her or feel like they can’t remember fun things about her.

Here’s a list of events I plan on covering:

  • Birth stories (how my mom was involved in it)
  • Holidays
  • Birthdays
  • Special things about her house
  • Special things about our house
  • Her hosting style
  • Her cats with my kids

Call it a memorial journal, call it a memory book, the name doesn’t matter. What matters is that you get to relive these wonderful memories through pen and paper. My kids will have something hand written by their mother about their grandmother.


5 Books for Your Adventurous Elementary-Schooler

I’m over on the Washington Independent today with 5 book reviews perfect for your elementary-schooler!

These titles are perfect to grab this week for your young reader to enjoy this weekend or during the upcoming holiday breaks! Having trouble with your kids getting interested in reading? Follow these steps: read my reviews, order one that is similar to their interest and read it with them!

Happy reading!

Toys to keep a preschooler girl busy.

My three-year-old daughter is a busy, busy preschooler. But I’ve noticed something about her. Typical toys loose her interest quickly. She needs something that is engaging and keeps her fingers and mind stimulated.

My five-year-old son is totally different. He will play with any toy, now that his imagination is kicked into high gear. But my daughter just isn’t there yet.

This past August when we celebrated her third birthday, I put a lot of thought into the gifts. Since she doesn’t really play with toys, we aimed for things that were more interactive. Here’s a few items that have been perfect!

*Note* These links are not affiliated. I do not have a degree in raising children, this is my own personal experience. Please pick and choose how to apply this advice to your own household.

Reusable Sticker Pads. 


Oh my word. This toy is just great! Tons of releasable stickers and rooms in a house for preschoolers to decorate. We bought this at our local toy store and couldn’t be happier with this. The stickers are really good quality and are relatively difficult to tear. My son really likes it too, so we will probably pick him up one for Christmas. And seriously, this item is around $5!


Magnetic Dress Up Dolls



I’m surprised how big of a hit this has been. While it has a stand for the mermaid to stand upright, my daughter usually plays with it how it’s shown in the picture. It works out since it keeps the pieces all together and I think it’s easier for her to see. They also have a ballerina one, but since we live at the beach, we are big mermaid fans. Again, we bought this at our local, family owned toy store and it was a deal at $12!

Barbie Grocery Store 



My girl is a Barbie girl, which couldn’t make me happier because I was a big Barbie girl. This toys keeps her engaged because she loves shopping carts and now her Barbies have a shopping cart! The conveyer belt actually works and slides the items into the grocery bag. Things I don’t like about this toy, they over packaged it and once we opened it, I realized the price of $35 was a little expensive for what you get. They also don’t have produce in the store but offer a big bottle of orange soda. Really? And while the doll is cute with her dress and hair style- she’s on the cheap side. Her legs are hollow, which was new to me. But my daughter has spent hours setting up the store, having her Barbie shop and checking out the items so at least we got our money’s worth.

Little Inu



This was a gift to the kids from one of my girlfriends, at the time we had no clue who Inu was. Now that we do I tell all my mom friends about him. He’s interactive and eats, sleeps, sings, laughs and is just darling! While it was a gift to my son, my daughter has taken it over claiming, “Inu is my baby.” This is a pricey toy, but my girlfriend bought it at an outlet. This would be a great Christmas present for the family! All the kids claim he is our pet and my daughter literally babies it all day long. She also gets very sad when her mama forgets to charge his battery at night. Whoops.

Bouncy Ball

bouncyballBoth of my kids received one of these for their birthdays and they have literally had a ball bouncing around the house with these. I love them because the noise and chaos caused by them doesn’t drive me crazy and it’s a workout for them. The balls aren’t too big either, which is nice for storage.

Hope these items make shopping for the little preschooler girl in your life a little easier!