Happy Birthday America!!

Thankful to every sacrifice that has been made to keep this country free and safe for these littles!

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Golden 3

Here it is the big 3, Avalon turned 3 today marking her Golden birthday.  I really have no idea what the history is for Golden Birthdays, making me think I should do a little research for my knowledge bank.

Back to the birthday girl, she is the youngest, I can’t say last it hurts to much, I would love another, our own or maybe even an adopted,  and I can’t coin her “the baby” because I have expectations for her that are the same as all the other 3.

We went for her 3 year check up today, since she has had some minor growth delays and health issues, I like to keep a record of her growth should it stall/stop again.  Great new for Avalon she is now in the 5% percentile for height and 13%!!! for weight,  considering she was totally of the charts for most of her 2nd year this is awesome!!

It was another day packed full of normal day activities , but I snuck in a city bus ride to downtown with the kids, Avalon really wanted to ride a bus, such an easy wish to grant on a birthday.

After dinner and cupcakes Solomon, Raiven and Santanna gave Avalon their gifts, it juts warms my heart how much our kids love to give to each other and the time and thought they put into their gifts.  The girls each made cards, Raiven’s was a pop out card that I know she spent a lot of time on.

So thankful to celebrate another candle on the cake for our little sprite!  You grow girl!!!

While they sleep

I should have taken a before picture…..it was a total explosion of imaginext toys, swimsuits from the swim bag and the table was covered in schoolwork debris.  You know the kind all those amazingly “special” papers that come home by the tree load every day.

So while the little girls slept I weeded through all of it and moved the furniture around, and re-organized the “homework” table (that I blogged about here) and have made it summer ready.

I put paper in each bin, one bin is lined and one is plain.  I was thinking some of those little hangs that fasten with tags would be perfect, but since I did not have any I just used a good old rock from the landscaping.

And while I was out there I cut these to bring a little more outdoors in.

So much better!  I can be such a better mom and give them more of my time with clean organized spaces. Think I can finish the house before all 4 of the kids are home for summer starting Friday?

Thumbs Up!

A cold.  It is creeping up on me,  I wake up in the morning and it truly sounds like there is a frog in my throat, I cough and mucus shrapnel hit the roof of my mouth, too much?! Yeah too much for me too.  It is an all respiratory cold.  Training run this morning = 12 miles.  I wake up 1 hour late.

Cold it kicking my a$$.  I have to check 12 mile off the list.

I buckle on my Garmin, tie my shoes, Velcro the fuel belt on and head out on a new 12 mile loop that I mapped out, with loads of hills….great(big eye roll followed by a froggy cough).  Exercise is supposed to boost your immune system right?!  I chug down the power -C hubby so thoughtfully made for me.

4 miles in going fine, a little slow but fine.

Mile 6, dragging a little, on a blacktop country road way out in by the airport with nothing in site but a red barn way off in the distance that is my right turn towards home….a green GMC truck comes  along, the drive gives me a HUGE thumbs up sign.

Cold not kicking my a$$, me kicking 12 miles in the A$$, hoping it comes around full circle, on the immune system.   I realized here I am on a gray day in the middle of nowhere running my heart out, for a training plan that I adhere to even when it is the perfect day to be inside nursing a cold reading about ALL the shades of gray, and this person just reinforced my strengths with the universal sign for way to go!

Positive support from strangers is not lost on this girl.  What a boost that strange thumbs up was…thanks  guy!!!!

It is like Christmas in Spring ’round Here

If you have read any previous posts on here, you know that I am a big fan of “thrift” shopping, or second hand clothing, I know this seems like such a trend, which is great, but this is just our way of life, for the most part. I did just splurge on some summer Naartjie clothes for all the kids….but what fun would being totally strict about anything be?

That being said, I somehow in my interweb ramblings, came across the site thredup.com where they sell great pre- owned children’s clothes/shoes. I am totally impressed with their selection and that everything is in really great condition, and if it not the customer service has been amazing. I received a shirt that had a stain on it and they immediately  issued a refund. They want their customers to be tonally satisfied.

So why is it like Christmas you ask?

 

These boxes keep showing up;)  When you spend $30 on your order they ship it for free!

They pack it so nicely!!!

Viola! Christmas!!! I have actually found many items that are still new, like those Gymboree tights. Brands I have seen, Mini Boden, Janie and Jack, Gymboree, Gap both kids and baby, Baby Nay, Old Navy, The Children’s Place, Naartjie and more. I have seen some great things from older lines that might be harder to find. They also sell shoes and I found a pair of Keen tennis shoes for Santanna. They put new items up every day and I have been so happy, I decided to share!!

You can also ask for a bag to be sent to y our house that you can put your gently used clothes into, drop of at your post office or a UPS store, or have it picked up from your house and they will buy your clothes from you. I have sent in one and will write what about it after I have more information on how the process went. Check their website for more details on what they purchase.

I just love being able to sit here and not have to look through racks of what is sometimes just too used to be worn, or get it home and realize the snap doesn’t work. It is like the cream of the crop second hand kids shopping.

Thredup did not ask me to write this nor was I given any incentive to write this, I am just really excited about this site, see if you can find something.

Repainting/redecorating a room a month?

We have been in our house for over 5 years, we built this house, I may have said this before, it is a huge process in life and with it comes pride…and lessons, some you learn in the process others you learn while living with all the decisions you made while building.

I specifically asked our builder when we got to the painting stage to PLEASE, puh-lease not paint our walls in a flat paint, this is builder code and I understand it hides any imperfections in the drywall, but seriously we were not going to return the house?!?! Anyway what did they paint the walls in? Flat paint. WE have 4 kids, 2 at the time, and a dog that weighs as much as I do. Are you getting a visual on how my walls might look, now imagine trying to wash those flat paint wall. NOT awesome!

Needless to say we are in the market for having an entire house repaint in a semi gloss or at least a sheen that handprints, splatters, slobber (dog…I think), food, milk,….you get the idea can be washed off and not leave a greasy looking mark behind.

So, I am hoping that we can accomplish one room per month, and since my mind is in creative-room-revamp-Pinterest overdrive I thought I might share some of the befores and afters, and also what the reality of said schedule may become with this crazy house:)

We decided to start with Raiven’s room, it was at one point a home office, and I had painted it a blue/gray color that I liked but, it is rather dark and not working so well for an almost 8 year old girl.

This was taken at night, but you can see the wall is dark, I am thinking about a nice light white color and having one wall with some metallic vertical stripes. I also want to get more photos up on her wall. She has an Isaac Mizrahi peony bed set with bright pinks so I am going to fit more pink into her room and pull come other colors out of the flowers to add color with the walls being more white

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Keeping Pace on Running Bib Numbers

It is amazing how good intentions and great ideas can be waylaid by life.  I can’t even express the awe I have have for some the bloggers who have families like ours, some even way bigger and have regularly fresh and inspirational posts.

I still have the ideas and posts in my head, and often when I go to bed I think I should have jotted down a little something.  Another goal…right;)

Anyway, I am a runner, an avid runner, it is my freedom, my Prozac, my therapy and time I get just for me.  I do not have a running partner for training, but I do have a racing partner.  When I go out run it is ME time, but when I race I love to share the experience with someone else, and maybe the hotel fee.

I have not blogged much on here about my running, I like to share more of the projects we work on, but it is a large part of my life and as the weather warms up will become more so.  I will probably back blog some of my race info and results, for my own personal record.

I started running after baby 3 was born, for the same reason most of us to…weight loss, but I am an athlete at heart and love to set and achieve goals and running became a part of me.  Since then I have completed 3 full marathon, 4 1/2 marathons and so many other races I do not have a count.

Here is what I have done as inspiration and a tribute to myself, I have saved every bib number, and on the back I have written my age, the date, the length of the race, (if it was not noted on the bib), and my pace for that race.  It is like a 3D journal plus when I run a race that I have previously run I can look back and see what my time was and try to better it.Image

I have yet to decide what I am going to do with my medals. Anyone else have a system for their racing momentos?

Happy Winter Holidays!!

We got our first round of snow here in MN and I immediately got everyone ready for a photo shoot, this was taken on one of our relatives farm and I just love how it turned especially since it was my first time using the camera on manual with a tripod. There are others from this shoot that are great but this is the one I am sharing, do not want to spoil what is coming snail mail to some of you;)

I have to admit I thought ths posted at the appropriate time but alas….not so much!

Candle holder repurpose…candy jars

I combined two pinterest inspirations into this latest project.  Please note I am not a perfectionist, there will more than likely be no magazine shoot for my projects, I just get excited when I see other people’s great ideas and have to do it myself, DIM, or at least give it my best shot.

Here are the two inspires…color and idea…in that order:

   

The wonderful yellow frame photoraph above I saw on pintrest and belongs to Kara May photography

The apothecary jars in that amazing green color I also found on pinterest and are the handiwork of Kayleen from This old Chair.

Yellow candle holders painted in a vibrant yellow and repurposed as candy holders, I held off on using a vessel with a top because in this house that would just not work, little hands need to be able to just reach in, I would probably find the lids under the couch.

I am so happy with the color and how they look, I am going to leave them out until after Thanksgiving and restock with fall candies.

I was so happy when I found all the pieces that I needed to make these all at SAvers, I spent a total of $16 dollars and some change on these, not including candy.

I laid these out, cleaned the stickers off them and laid a tarp underneath the metal stand, and painted them on a vitually wind free day.