7 Things

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Linking up for 7 Quick Takes

1. I’m not one of those people who jumps on pumpkin flavored everything as soon as we hit September, but I did discover this week that McDonald’s has a pumpkin spice flavored syrup so now I’m not sure why I’d ever go back to Starbucks and have to pay more than $1 when I feel the need for a pumpkin flavored coffee drink.

2. Are Adidas Superstars officially back? I keep seeing them online and those were my favorite back in high school. Like wear them everyday and keep them sparkling clean with soft scrub type of favorite. Anyone else?

3. Old Navy is dangerous right now – have you guys been in lately?! I’ve had lunchtime trips over the past few weeks and both times I walk out spending way more than I should. I now have 3 pairs of these shoes that I’ve added to my closet and finally decided I loved this sweater and went for it after seeing several bloggers wear it in ways I really loved. Heads up though if you’re thinking about buying it too, my normal size felt too sloppy through the shoulders so I sized down one size and it still has the loose fitting feel I was going for but doesn’t look sloppy, and the sleeves are still long enough!

4. This week we upped our parenting game and we’ve been winding down with Jacob by taking turns reading books with him before bed, with my husband and I each picking our favorites. I went for Goodnight Moon and taught him to find the mouse in every scene like my dad used to do with my brother and I. By the second time we read the book I’d tell him to find the mouse and I knew when he’d found it because he just started giggling, then I would ask to show me and he’d point to it. So cute!

5. I’m grateful that even though I live about 2 hours from my hometown, that 2 of my best friends from childhood live in the same city. Lately we’ve had plenty of group texts to stay connected, but it’s gotten harder and harder to get together as often as we used to. We finally just planned another girls night in a couple of weeks and I’m super excited for it…countdown is on!

6. It’s officially fall and I just continue staring wistfully at my fall/winter Pinterest board waiting for the temperature to dip low enough to wear some layers, because if you take a look at what I’ve pinned it seems like I’ll probably live in distressed denim and layers in alternative shades of black, gray, tan, burgundy, and olive green.

7. Found this article thanks to Bridget’s blog post on Friday and it made me laugh and want to hang out with Bill Murray!

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An Attitude Check

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I’m in tune with myself enough that I can recognize when I’m in a funk, but that’s only half the battle with the other half being checking yourself and making changes to your attitude. I’m right in that sweet spot lately, I know I need to shake things up a bit but I can’t just bring myself to do it. A lunchtime walk to get out the office, an actual work out, or true time to myself or just a few of the things that I think will make a difference but yet here I am again, having great intentions and then just not following through.

So I’ll get there and make those changes I need, I’m sure of it but in the meantime it’s taken some willpower to stop my bad attitude from being projected onto those around me, specifically my poor husband since by default he’s usually the victim. Yesterday was a perfect example – Jacob was being particularly hyper and the weather hadn’t been great so we hadn’t gotten to do much outside like I try to do on the weekends. I was right in the middle of trying to get laundry folded and put away upstairs with Jacob playing nearby while my husband tackled some chores downstairs. Jacob would run from room to room then make moves for the stairs (we never installed a baby gate and now I feel like we’ve gone so long without it that we’d have a pretty frustrated toddler if we installed one) so I would drop the clothes I was folding, hold his hand to walk downstairs, but then he’d change his mind a few steps down and dash upstairs again. He did this on repeat and I was in no mood for it.

Right at that moment my husband walked up and suggested we go to our favorite bar/restaurant to watch his beloved Cleveland Browns since they weren’t televised locally on a station we have access to. Without thinking my immediate response was “yeah, that sounds like a blast at naptime” with the sarcasm obviously layered on thick. I followed that up with some bitchy venting through text with one of my closest friends – I’m not proud, but it helped – and then decided to relax, just go with it and we knew at worst he’d act like a tired toddler and we’d have to leave.

I’m happy to report that all turned out well and nobody lost their ever loving mind! The 3 of us had lunch together and made it through sometime in the second quarter of the football game, then Jacob and I headed out for a walk while my husband watched the rest of the game. The benefit to our location is that favorite bar/restaurant is in the outdoor mall in our city so we had plenty to distract us. We visited the toy train display they have, listened to some of a free concert going on, and discovered a wooden train track upstairs at Barnes & Noble that probably could’ve kept him occupied for hours.

He was interested long enough for me to get to go into H&M and of course I couldn’t find anything for myself at a time when I would’ve felt zero guilt buying something for me because you know, if daddy gets to hang out at a bar and watch football then mommy definitely deserves something new from H&M. 😉 But nothing! I did find the Star Wars pajamas he’s wearing in the picture above though (can’t find them online though) and although I care nothing about anything Star Wars related, I have such a weakness for buying clothes for Jacob that I know my husband will think are awesome that I just couldn’t help myself.

By the time we met back up we were all feeling good and enjoyed the chance to get out of the house for an afternoon. So let that be my lesson learned – never underestimate your toddler’s ability to be a champ (but be prepared for him not to be) and just relax every once in awhile, right?!

 

Waiting on Fall

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tee (similar) / sweater (similar)jeans (similar)shoes

Today we finally hit the point where I only see one day in the extended weather forecast that makes into the 80 degree range (and low 80s at that) so I think I’m finally starting to believe that fall is indeed here. To pass the time over the past few weeks I had to compromise a bit, layering up with a sweater that has a summer feel to it (needed anyway to battle the severe air conditioning in our office) but going for flats in decidedly fall colors. I’m ready for it though, bring on some chilly air and all things pumpkin!

7 Things

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1. Donuts from the local Kroger bakery doesn’t scream blog worthy (and food photographer I am certainly not) like the goodies from a local or specialized bakery, but oh man are their caramel apple cake donuts delicious. I picked them up to share with co-workers this week and call me simple, but I think it’s definitely one of the best donuts I’ve ever had!

2. My interest lies more with developing my own personal style rather than concerning myself with fashion and upcoming trends (truthfully that’s always felt a bit intimidating to me – I’m much more mom style than street style), but several bloggers I follow on Snapchat went to New York Fashion Week and it was a little intriguing to see what it was like. Anybody else love Snapchat for that reason, getting to see places you’ve never been/stuff you’ve never gotten to do? I’m nosy!

3. I officially started Christmas shopping yesterday by purchasing our first gift for someone and started a list in my phone with ideas – who am I? I’m usually that person who can’t get it together until December and then I’m rushing around last minute and that just takes the fun out of it.

4. Some random Denver number just called me, putting Pandora on my phone on pause for a minute while I was listening to a little Kriss Kross and I didn’t answer, but my reaction in my head was all WHO ARE YOU AND WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME?! 😉

5. I want one or maybe all of these. Somewhere along the way I think I’ve really embraced being a boy mom.

6. I went to the fall preview party that Candis from The Jones Market hosted last Friday and you guys, mark your calendar for the fall line to launch next week on 9/22. So good! I behaved and just bought 3 things but could’ve easily bought 3x as much as I did. Since I discovered her business maybe a year and a half ago now I’ve added at least one item to my personal collection each season. Kiddo friendly, good looking jewelry that I can’t get enough of!

7. We’re just on the verge of fall so even though the temperatures don’t quite feel like it yet, knowing it’s right around the corner plus the weather forecast looking like a rainy weekend has me want to wanting to make some soup. A co-worker mentioned a vegetable orzo soup she made and now I’m wanting to give this recipe a try, just with adding italian sausage because I have a lot to use up in my freezer.

Linking up for 7 Quick Takes

Currently

Talking about life lately, linking up with Anne and Beth!

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Reading

I just posted last week about a book I read recently and really loved – A Series of Catastrophes & Miracles by Mary Elizabeth Williams. Such a good read in my opinion, and it really got me thinking! On a more light hearted note, I’m now reading The Joy of Leaving Your Sh*t All Over the Place by Jennifer McCartney. It’s just a short but funny read that challenges everything about the clutter free/Kon Mari life. As long as colorful language doesn’t offend you, then it’s one I would recommend if you need a good laugh and an excuse to ignore all household chores. 🙂

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Trying

To get my life together in terms of health/fitness. I want to eat healthier, and have been really intrigued by zoodles and debating trying to convince my husband that we need a spiralizer. I noticed the other day that our grocery store now sells squash or sweet potatoes already spiralized so I’m using that as a tester for a week of two to make sure I’ll actually eat the stuff before adding another gadget to our kitchen cabinets. So far I’ve just eaten them with pasta sauce for a few lunches at work, but think I’ll have to get a little more creative to avoid getting bored with it.

Hoping

After an appointment with the allergist today confirmed a peanut and cow’s milk allergy for our son, I’m hoping that he’ll outgrow both at some point!

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Decorating

Our office area. It’s just a small nook upstairs but earlier this summer I reorganized it and created a space for Jacob too. Now I just have to get myself to use it more. It feels good to finally have some things hanging on the wall in there too after 6 years of living here!

To-Do Listing

The never ending nature of it has been a recent source of stress, but a few of the big ones hanging over my head are another closet clean out for me, going through all of Jacob’s old clothes to get rid of ones we don’t want to keep and better organize the ones we do (I just threw everything in boxes as he outgrew them), and to put a little more effort into our landscaping. None of these things sound enjoyable. 😦

Holiday Weekend Shopping

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I’m really loving that we’re in the stage where my son has outgrown any hand me downs that were shared with us, and his birthday last fall and Christmas were both long ago enough that any gifts he’s outgrown by now too. They certainly were appreciated, but it’s been really fun to have to shop for him because as we’re getting ready to shift into fall (after a few more 90 degree days headed our way…ugh!) he pretty much had no clothes that will fit him.

We had done a good job of stocking up on 4 or 5 sweatshirts for about $5 each when Carter’s had their end of season sales as we were getting ready to roll into spring/summer, but new pajamas, pants, long sleeve tees, and shoes were needed then I couldn’t help but get a few new short sleeves too. Those will get plenty of wear while the temperature is still high, then layer up nicely as it gets cooler.

We took full advantage of the Labor Day sales this weekend. Because kids are messy and I have no desire to try to reign that in for the sake of keeping clothes stain free, I cringe to pay more than $5-$10 on any piece of clothing (except shoes) that we buy him. Old Navy was my go-to spot for an online order of shirts because they had a really good selection for about $4-$6 each. From plain, to prints, to baseball tees, to character tees because I think it’s fair for every little boy to own a TMNT tee and a batman tee, I stocked up on them all. Plus I threw a little something in the cart for myself to get myself over $50 to qualify for that free shipping. 😉

Carter’s was another spot Jacob and I went to check out on Saturday afternoon because it was time for another round of their $5 doorbusters. I’m realizing I didn’t include any pictures, but we stocked up on maybe 5 of the $5 sweatpants, betting them in almost every color. I had found jeans for him during a trip to the outlet mall back in July, but sweatpants and t-shirts are this kids’ uniform so we needed options. Some $5 long-sleeve tees with prints of things he knows the name of because I love when he tells me what’s on his shirts (dino, bear, and bike) and then I just couldn’t resist this bear tee for a few dollars more because he just recently learned what a bear is and Brown Bear is the current favorite book in our house, so how could I not?

We also made a trip to Buy Buy Baby to price out car seats since I’m in need of a new one soon for my car and used it as a chance to snatch up a few pairs of pajamas. Continuing with the bear theme, I couldn’t resist this pair even though they weren’t on sale. We also bought some Burt’s Bees pj’s for half off, for only $10 a pair. I couldn’t find them on Buy Buy Baby’s website, but found them here and here on Kohl’s website and because it’s Kohl’s that means they’re bound to go on serious sale at some point right? Softest jams our kid has owned, so I may even be convinced that they’re worth it at full price.

New shoes rounded out the weekend of shopping and I felt like such bad parents when we took him into Stride Rite and realized his sneakers were a whole size smaller than what he should be in now. Poor kid! We decided to take advantage of their buy one get one 40% off sale and get him two pairs of shoes for this fall. We bought the same style he outgrew (couldn’t find them in blue on Stride Rite’s site) and then the cutest little pair of Saucony’s too, and I may have already started the hunt online to see if I can snag a matching pair of Saucony’s for myself. I’m sure it’d induce a few eye rolls from my husband, but I may not be able to help myself!

 

If You Need a Good Read

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I promise my kid is actually in that bathtub, I’m not just hiding out alone in my bathroom to read a book. Now that I say that though, not a bad idea. 😉

Writing book reviews aren’t really my thing, maybe partially because my relationship with reading has always bounced back and forth between being obsessed and wanting to read all the time to then going almost a year before I pick up another book. But when I came across A Series of Catastrophes & Miracles by Mary Elizabeth Williams, I loved it so much I just had to share.

The way I found the book was really random. I was reading one of Kate Baer’s curated tweets posts and she included a tweet by Mary Beth about getting played that I thought was hilarious so I decided to check her out and follow her on Twitter because she seemed to have some pretty funny tweets and I thought she would be entertaining. Her profile must’ve mentioned her book, so I requested it from the library. When it came in, I wandered down to the library on my lunch break one day before walking to grab some lunch and was so intrigued by it that I started it as I stood in a hot and tiny little restaurant waiting for my to go order for what felt like forever (probably because I was hangry) and I was hooked. I read it on some of my lunch breaks, I read it while my kid was taking a bath each night, and when I got to the last few pages I wanted so badly to finish reading it that I read it by cell phone flashlight while in bed trying to get my son to sleep.

Now let me clear, my first impression of the author was that she made me laugh a few times but I knew good and well when I looked up her book and saw that the subtitle included cancer that this was not a book to expect to laugh my way through. But Piper Kerman’s comment about the book (printed on the cover) kind of sums it up perfectly: “When you laugh and cry at the exact same time, you know you are reading an amazing survival story”. I loved it because it felt real, in a way that this was a person very authentically sharing her physical and emotional experience with cancer – and not just her own diagnosis and treatment, but others in her life too.

In fact, I think what hit me hardest in her book was the number of people she knows who have been diagnosed with some type of cancer. And think about it – I’m guessing that almost all of us know somebody who has experienced that diagnosis too, right? Whether it be a co-worker, a friend, or a family member it’s just unfortunately a very common thing I think. For me it includes two aunts who had breast cancer, my mom had a scare that turned out fine, and then my father-in-law had throat cancer. Throughout the book the author references reactions of others around here, from friends she thought would always be there drifting away to one of her friends showing her support by sending her a *language alert* fuck cancer t-shirt. And it really got me thinking, which friend would I be? I hope it’s the friend who doesn’t shy away for fear of not knowing what to say, and instead picks out the completely inappropriate t-shirt.

Another big theme of the book that I found really interesting was the treatment she received through a clinical trial and I don’t think I’m spoiling anything because clearly she lived to write the book, but the treatment worked with astounding results. So if you like the chances of a good laugh, a good cry, and a peek inside the really great things modern medicine can achieve then I would definitely recommend this book!