Posted in Friday Favorites, Home Decor

Friday Favorites

Hello and Happy Friday! How was your week? We had a pretty good week of school, work and activities. My favorite part of the week was that it actually felt like fall!! We’ve had pretty mild and even cool temps, and it’s just been amazing. I put out my fall decorations last weekend, and I’m so happy that I did. I would have enjoyed them no matter what, but since it actually feels like fall outside, that’s made the house feel even more cozy on the inside.

As always, I’m linking up with Erika and Andrea for their Friday Favorites link up.

Favorite Moment:

Hadley was excited to show me that she was featured on the 5th grade website.

Favorite subject: grammar πŸ‘πŸ» #shegetsitfromhermama

Favorite Kid Quote:

The other night, Homer was snuggling with Hadley. He hops in her bed every night for about ten minutes before she kicks him out, so she can get her beauty sleep. As I walked past her room, she asked me to take their pic.

When she looked at the photo she said, β€œCouples goals!” Cracked me up!

Favorite Clothing Item:

I ordered this sweater (two of them, actually) from Nordstrom Rack. I love a roomy sweater because I feel like I can wear it to school or wear it with jeans or leggings….the price couldn’t be beat.

Unfortunately, I can’t seem to find the link online…but here it is:

Favorite Pic:

Homer let me dress him up in his autumn bandana from Golden Dog Co (a shop on Etsy.) He will tolerate bandanas for a bit if they are flipped with the scarf part on his back. I let him wear them for a bit until he notices. haha

Favorite Food:

Nothing says fall like Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bagels and Pumpkin Cream Cheese. I don’t even like cream cheese, but love their pumpkin flavor.

Other Faves:

I’ve binged The Home Edit on Netflix over the past week (mostly last weekend!). It’s soooo good! Hayden even watched some episodes with me. He’s my tidier child, so that makes sense πŸ˜‰Seeing these two ladies work their magic on celebrity and “regular” people’s homes and closets is so satisfying. (That’s how Hayden described it!)

His other remark could go in the “favorite kid quote” section of this post because it made me laugh. After seeing the before and after of one completed closet, he said, “Mom, they need to help you with your closet. It’s a DISASTER!” #hesnotlying

As I mentioned above, I put out my fall decorations last weekend.

I always take pics of my seasonal decorations, so I was able to decorate for fall in about an hour when I looked back at last year’s pics. After getting everything put where I wanted it, I felt like I needed one more thing (Travis would beg to differ) πŸ˜‚,so I went to Michaels, and saw this light up pumpkin! It’s battery operated and so cute! Plus, I got it for 40% off. I almost grabbed a second one but reeled myself in! So, the only decoration I purchased this year was the LED pumpkin. I consider that a win! #andTravisshouldtoo

At Trader Joe’s, I picked up a few mini pumpkins and gourds to put in the kitchen.

The kids and I stopped by Bath & Body Works on Saturday for a few candles. I had a 20% off coupon, and I knew they were having a buy 1 get 1 free for the 3 wick candles. Honestly, I usually just buy the single wick ones because the 3 wick ones take up more space on the counter or on a shelf, but it was such a great deal to get one free.

I also picked up some single wick candles. Hayden picked out the Apple Weather scented candle, and Hadley chose the Pumpkin Pecan Waffle one.

I rarely go there, but on Sunday, I went to the At Home store, and picked up a couple of things. I need to remember to go there for servingware. I usually have success finding white plates or dishes at Home Goods or TJ Maxx, but At Home had so many awesome pieces. I held off for now on servingware, but did buy this quart basket to hold odds and ends that collect in the tray on my kitchen island. Inevitably, loose change, allergy medicine, paper clips, etc. end up scattered about on my decorative tray. Now my rule is, if it doesn’t fit in this basket, it’s trash or needs to go where it belongs.

I also found this this set to hold utensils. I wish I could keep it out all the time, but I bought it to use when we have people over….when that’s a “thing” again.

I love my Golden Girls, and their show debuted 35 years ago this week. I saw this on Facebook and loved it. That show is a classic.

September 14

Let me tell you Hayden’s favorite part of the week. The kids talked me into getting them Chick-fil-a yesterday (that’s usually a Friday thing) and then Hayden proceeded to watch the US Open while he ate his lunch…followed by a β€œround” of golf in the front and backyard for recess πŸ˜‚

Living his best life!

Favorite Mom Meme:

This meme made me laugh. Since the day Hadley’s personality started to shine through, people would say, “She looks like you!” and I would (still) always reply, “Well, unfortunately she acts like me too!” 😬#sassandsarcasm #amen Sis does have a heart of gold, though!

Bonus Fave: Flashback Friday

This memory was in my Facebook Memories this week. I included the whole caption, because the sass that I mentioned previously is evident in this post.

I also remember Travis sending me this photo! He’d taken her to a doctor’s appointment, and she was so worried about missing school since she was supposed to share her poster with the class. I loved how excited she was and the fact that Travis knew I’d want a pic of her with her poster.

Weekly Recap:

Here are this week’s posts if you missed one!

We have cooler temps, a baseball tournament and a cross country meet this weekend! I also hope to make some pumpkin bread if time allows!

Thanks so much for reading! I hope you have a great weekend!

Posted in Me, Self-care, Thursday Thoughts

Thursday Thoughts: Enneagram Ways to Cope

Hello! So, I’ve shared before about my Enneagram type being a 5w6. (Investigator/Loyalist) In my last Enneagram post, I shared how I’d started following @cathartic_word on Instagram. Erin’s graphics are so cool, and always seem to ring true for the Enneagram types which I think is so fun.

I recently saw her Ways to Cope series, and thought I’d chat about that.

Everyone copes with sadness, frustration, anxiety, worry, and more throughout their lives. I see with my students or my own kids, that they don’t always know how to cope with all of their feelings and emotions. Knowing how to cope is beneficial and a perk of being an adult. πŸ˜‰

So here’s the breakdown for my Type 5w6…

Type 5:

graphic c/o @cathartic_word May 20,2020
  • Solo trip to the movies: Solo anything! πŸ˜‰ I feel like when I’m overwhelmed, I need space. I need time to think and decompress. A movie would be a great way to do that, and I find comfort in watching reruns of familiar shows like The Golden Girls or cooking shows….I’m basically wanting to watch something where I don’t have to think.
  • Something innovative: For me, something innovative would be writing a blog post. Or…do you know what else I love? Those coloring books with all the details. I loved when my kids were little and liked to color. Hayden likes to draw right now. I’m not a drawer…but I definitely like to use colored pencils or the thin tipped markers for coloring pages. I even have a Golden Girls coloring book.
  • The entire pot of coffee: Yes. Coffee. On repeat. Besides needing coffee to wake up my brain and function, I always feel warm and cozy in the morning when I light a couple of candles, sip my coffee, and read blogs or scroll social media.
  • Writing: I’ve always loved journaling. At different points in my life, it’s been a priority and other times not so much. Obviously, the blog satisfies that need and can be a form of coping.
  • Learn something new: Of all things listed for Type 5, this is least like me. I’m not opposed to learning something new (I am a teacher, after all!), but actually when I need to decompress, it’s usually because my brain is too full, and I just need a minute to unwind my thoughts and feelings.

Type 6:

graphic c/o @cathartic_word May 19, 2020
  • Long walks: Yes! I love a solo long walk. It’s a great time to think about my day or plan upcoming days. Kind of like watching a familiar show, I enjoy listening to podcasts when I walk as a way to zone out and cope.
  • Dogs: Of course! You know I’m a dog person. I’ve shared about our previous dogs Shiloh and Scout…and now we have Homer. I’m always amazed at how animals know when you need them. Even Homer, who can be wild and crazy, knows when I (or any other family member) needs a good snuggle for comfort.
  • A good book: I love getting lost in a good book. Reading is certainly a way to cope for me.
  • Catching up on sleep: I’m forever tired. I always need more sleep, but even in my day to day life, which can be hectic, I find that I’m making sleep a priority more and more. If there is something I’m struggling with, then the lounging in my bed for a few minutes with my eyes closed is so helpful for me to calm my thoughts and get my mind right.
  • Music: I’ve never been a big music person. For me, like I said above, I’d probably choose a podcast over music as a way to decompress. I also really love silence in the car. I’m the type that turns down the radio to think. πŸ˜‰

I don’t get too caught up in my numbers…and sometimes I think I’m more of a 6 than a 5…I think 6w5 is an option;) but I do find it interesting. If you haven’t checked out Erin on Instagram yet, you should! Go find the graphic for your type!

What’s your Enneagram number? This is the test I took about a year ago. I’ve thought about taking it again…but then what if my number has changed? I’d be so confused! haha

See you back here tomorrow for this week’s Friday Favorites post.

Take care,

Posted in Currently

Currently…

Hey there! How is your week going? We are in a pretty good groove over here with school, work, and activities. Thankfully, I think we have a good school routine going which helps whether the kids are at school or at the tutor’s house. Travis is very busy with work, so I’m just doing the best I can keeping these kids fed and getting them where the need to be πŸ˜‰

Anyway…

I thought I’d share a Currently post today with just a bit of this and that of my thoughts and what’s going on.

I’m Currently…

Enjoying:

Cooler temps! It’s really felt like fall since the weekend. I will even consider low 80’s as fall-ish weather as it can be 90+ sometimes in September around here. I can’t wait for Friday and Saturday with highs in the upper 60’s. #livingforfallyall

I even broke out some red wine over the weekend. I’m the type that drinks white wine when it’s warm and red wine in cooler and colder weather. Saturday night, I watched the Royals game in the sunroom with a cozy blanket and a glass of red wine. It felt like fall, and I was here for it!

Reminiscing:

about my first date with Travis. We went on our first date 19 years ago this week. We hiked on the M-K-T Trail in Columbia, Missouri followed by dinner at Bambinos. With no fancy cell phone back in 2001, I don’t think we have many pics from our first few years of dating, but this is definitely one from 2001 or 2002.

Waiting on:

on my Gibson order. Fancy Ashley shared this Gibson crossover top, and it was on major sale ($19 each). I bought two of them a couple of weeks ago, and hopefully they will arrive this week!

Eating:

too many of…these Pumpkin Flavored Joe-Joe’s. Impulse buy when I popped into Trader Joe’s earlier this week…and they don’t disappoint. They are perfect for the kids’ lunchboxes or a mid-afternoon sweet treat…(or for dessert with a tall glass of milk #dontjudge) πŸ˜‚

Loving:

this Homer moment. Our pumpkin on the pumpkin pillow πŸ˜‚…which is cute as long as he doesn’t ruin it!

Laughing (at):

This meme.

It’s so true. πŸ˜‚

Meeting and Following:

Lots of new (to me!) ladies and moms on Instagram. I’ve joined a couple of Follow Loops lately which has been a great way to “meet” some new accounts that I most likely wouldn’t have otherwise found. Women supporting and lifting up other women…

So…that’s just a little bit about what’s been currently going on around here!

I hope you are having a great week,

Posted in Me, Tuesday Talk

Tuesday Talk: My Perfect Day

Hey! How’s it going? I’m linking up with Erika and Ashley today for their Tuesday Talk post. I like these posts because it gives me a time be more reflective and write more of a journal like entry. Tuesday Talk posts can be about anything you’d like to chat or write about.

Recently, I was listening to Landyn’s podcast, and she asked her guest about what her “perfect” day would be. Of course, that got me thinking about what a perfect day would look like for me. That being said, I’m thinking of my perfect day through the lens of a full time working mom with two busy kids. So….I hope my (mostly) sweet kids won’t be offended if my “perfect” day includes lots of “me” time. πŸ˜‰

My Perfect Day:

  • I’d start by not setting an alarm and sleeping in. That being said, I’m sure “sleeping in” would be 7:30 at the latest, but not setting an alarm is the best.
  • Then, I’d have some quiet time while sipping my coffee, reading blogs, and scrolling social media. (Honestly, that’s what I do most mornings, but I have to get up in the 6’s to get that quiet time for myself)
  • A walk or workout would be great.
  • Then, I’d most likely love a trip to Trader Joe’s and Home Goods.
  • A manicure and pedicure would be next!
  • I’d meet Travis for lunch. Who gets to go out to a lunch that lasts longer than 20 minutes? Not this teacher!
  • Then, I’d read a book and watch a show in peace and quiet.
  • I’d love to meet some friends for an early dinner where I’d enjoy a glass of wine!
  • Dessert at home by a cozy fire in the fireplace with lights out by 10:00 would be the perfect end to the day.

It’s the simple things that make the day perfect.

Now, if this was a destination “perfect day,” then I would be sitting with my toes in the sand and a view of the ocean or sipping my coffee with a view of the mountains followed by a hike with my friends and family.

It also depends on the season! I love going to the pumpkin patch or a UK football game with my family in the fall. A lazy day with snow falling in the winter is always so cozy. A hike in the spring is always great. We love to go to the pool in the summer! We love roasting marshmallows in a backyard fire, and catching up with neighbors on one of our patios. Seeing Hayden and Hadley play with their cousins or going to a movie also make for a “perfect day.”

Also, simple things like picking my kids up from school means so much to me on a regular school day. That’s not my every day when we have a “normal” school year, so I enjoy being the one to get my kids after school and hear about their day. It’s also why I have actually cherished this time at home with them since March.

Really, in a “perfect day” for me, there’d be no hustle and bustle, no to do lists that need crossed off, no appointments and meetings, and no kids fighting 😊I do find joy with being with my family. Sometimes the day is perfect when we’ve played a game after dinner or taken a family walk with Homer. That being said, I also know that quiet time and time for me to recharge is also good for all of us πŸ˜‰

What would your perfect day include?

Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts too!

Thanks so much for reading,

Posted in Not Just a Mom, Self-care

Not Just a Mom: Skin Care Routine

Happy Monday! How was your weekend? The weather definitely felt like fall this weekend, and I’m not mad about it. We had a busy Saturday followed by a lazy and rainy Sunday.

It’s the second Monday of the month, so I’m linking up with Lauren, Ashley, and others for their Not Just a Mom series.

This month’s topic is about skincare routine. I’d say I skated through my 20’s and didn’t do much for skincare. I’ve shared before, but I don’t think I even started taking my makeup off before bed until I turned 30 or so.

Through the years, I’ve started to use products for my skin that have become part of my routine. I’ve used Rodan + Fields and have a couple friends who sell Mary Kay, so I’ve used some of those products as well. The products and routine for today’s post are my pretty regular schedule, but I do supplement with R+F and MK at times.

Morning Routine:

  • I wash my face every morning with some kind of face wash. Recently, I discovered the Hydro Boost Cleansing Gel by Neutrogena, and I really love it.
  • Then, I use a cotton round to apply toner. I love the rose petal toner by Thayers, and I usually order it off Amazon.
  • Now, I’m not married to L’Oreal, but I use their day and night creams when not using R+F or MK. For the price point and convenience of purchasing at grocery and drug stores, it’s a good option for me to use daily.
  • I’ve recently started using the L’Oreal eye cream, and it’s helped with puffiness and dark circles under my eyes. #mamaisforevertired

Nighttime Routine:

  • I usually wash my face in the shower, and then use makeup removing wipes to get off any additional makeup I may have left on my face.
  • I again use a cotton round to apply facial toner.
  • Then, I sue the L’Oreal eye cream and night time moisturizer when not using other products.

Face Masks:

For the past few years, I’ve incorporated face masks into my weekly routine.

  • I love the Mary Kay Timewise Moisture Renewing Gel Mask, and I use it twice a week or so.
  • Another MK fave is the Deep Cleansing Charcoal Mask. It’s usually my Sunday morning face mask.
  • A few times a month, I will use the egg white mask by Skinfood. It’s a pore-refining cleanser, and helps my skin feel clean and fresh after use.

Other Items:

I mentioned recently that I’ve started using a jade roller in the morning. I keep this one in the fridge, and roll it on my face most mornings to help with puffiness and sinus pain.

Also, every other week or so, I try to use my steamer for a facial. My mom gave me this one for Christmas last year, and it’s been perfect to use at home.

I also do my best to drink water, and I always wear SPF…lesson learned from my younger years. I often where a hat when out in the sun, and try to find a chair with an umbrella at the pool!

Monthly Medspa:

Lastly, the best money I spend on myself is my monthly facial at a local medspa. I’ve been going for monthly facials for about four years. My club package includes one of the following each month: microdemabrasion, chemical peel, express facial, or dermaplane.

Each month, I usually double up and do two treatments (like a dermaplane and facial) or one treatment and an eye brow wax. Dermaplane has officially become my favorite treatment…#girlshaveyourface

I so look forward to my monthly appointments, and trust my esthetician Lauren with whatever she thinks I need each month. After each appointment, I always ask her, “Do I look 35 again?” πŸ˜‚I’m not over here trying to be 22…just trying to keep my 40 year old face looking fresh. Those monthly appointments feel like part luxury, part therapy, and part necessity. Sometimes I feel guilty with that monthly splurge, but I also know how important it is to keep your skin healthy…and I’m just trying to age gracefully πŸ˜‰

So that’s just a bit of my of my skincare routine. What do you do for your daily, weekly, monthly routines? Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts!

Next month’s topics is: getting crafty!

Thanks so much for reading, and I hope you have a great week!

Posted in Clothes, Friday Favorites

Friday Favorites

Hey! Hey! It’s Friday! Sometimes these short weeks feel like they are the longest, and that definitely held true for me this week. The kids have had a great week of distance learning, activities are continuing/starting back, Travis is very busy with work, and I’m basically holding on for dear life πŸ™ƒ

As always, I’m ready for the weekend. I’m linking up with Andrea and Erika for their weekly Friday Favorites post.

Before I get started, of course, today holds such significant meaning. September 11th. I remember being 21 years old and a senior in college when our country was attacked. I can’t believe it’s been 19 years, and I now have students in class who weren’t even born then and who can’t fully understand the panic and disbelief that everyone endured that day and in the weeks and months that followed. We will certainly never forget.

Here are some favorites from the week:

Favorite Kid Quote(s):

I mentioned in my Weekend Wrap Up post that we got together with a few neighbors to celebrate one of the families who is moving. We had gluten and dairy free options for those who eat GF and DF, and as Hayden put food on his plate he said, β€œAm I vegan?” It just made me laugh. No, Hayden, no you are not. πŸ˜‚

Hadley’s growing like a weed, and I wanted to get her some pj shorts that actually are appropriate in length! Anyway, I found this cute set on Amazon. Hadley put them on, entered the room and said, “Where’s my sleep squad ?” πŸ˜‚ She’s a hoot.

Favorite Pic:

I love this pic of some of our neighborhood crew! They are lucky to have each other.

Favorite Clothing Item:

I’ve purchased a couple of things from Target recently and have been so pleased with them. I’m going to school 2-3 days per week. There aren’t many teachers there, of course, there are no students, and I may only see a few people, but I do try to get dressed to leave the house.

This dress was perfect to wear this week. It’s definitely a great transition piece as it can be worn now or with cardigan and booties in the fall and winter.

I actually did wear it with this cardigan because my classroom is chilly…but here’s the cardigan with jeans and a tank. I’ve worn the cardigan with my pjs kind of as a robe, over the dress, and with these jeans…so I know it’s something that will get a lot of wear!

I realize maybe I should hang this mirror! So many headless photos of me!

Favorite Food:

We finished off the Pumpkin Sugar cookies we made this past weekend. I will definitely make them again, and maybe even freeze some to enjoy later. #zerowillpowerwithsweets

No picture…but I dropped the ball on Wednesday night’s dinner. I mismanaged my time and also forgot to thaw the hamburger meat for dinner. So, while Travis and the kids finished up cross country practice, I decided to change up dinner. Thankfully, I had a DiGiorno’s pizza, bagged Caesar salad, freshly cut up watermelon on hand, so I went with that. At the last second, I wondered if the pizza would be enough, so I threw some Trader Joe’s mini tacos in the oven as well.

When everyone got home, I put dinner on the plates. Hayden sat down at the table and said, “Is this a lazy dinner?” I told him yes and kind of gave him the side eye. He replied, “No mom, I LOVE it!” I probably should take this short cut more often on dinner!

(And…it’s not like I’m a fancy chef, but I do try to cook Sunday-Thursday whether it’s in the slower cooker, Instant Pot, stove, oven, etc)

I do have a picture of lunch last week. One of my blogger friends (hi, Amy!) suggested serving the kids their lunch on cafeteria trays. My gma gave me these trays years ago. I used to use them for dinners outside, or they could be used for a picnic. Anyway, the kids thought this was fun. I served them lunch yesterday on them as well. This may be our new Thursday tradition while we are doing school at home.

Ready to eat!

Other Faves:

Another favorite from the week has been early morning workouts. I mean, do I love when the alarm goes off 30-45 minutes earlier? No. But do I love getting my workout accomplished before the busyness of the day starts? Yes.

During the “regular” school year, I get up early 2-3 days a week to get my workouts accomplished. So, I’ve made that a priority this week, and I’m happy with that decision. I typically work out in my basement, but have also enjoyed walks in the morning with cooler temps!

Hayden’s back at it with baseball (after only a couple weeks off). Typically, he plays soccer in the fall, but decided at the last minute to play with a new baseball team this fall. He likes soccer but loves baseball. It’s been so fun seeing him grow as a player this past season, and I know he’ll continue doing so during this season too.

And…Hadley has decided to try competition team for dance this year. Does this officially make me a Dance Mom?!

Who doesn’t love Homer in a scarf?!? Our sweet biscuit let me snap a few photos of him in his Chiefs scarf. We were all excited about the season opener last night!

Here he is last year:

Favorite Mom Meme:

Thankfully, my kids aren’t eating me out of house and home…but lots of snacking, lunch packing, and meal preparing going on during the hours of 8:00-4:00. My grocery list has been a bit more extensive with them at home.

Bonus Fave: Flashback Friday

I won’t ever get political on here, but Jimmy John will always get our vote πŸ˜‰

Travis had taken the kids to Jimmy Johns in September of 2012….They were excited to show me their “Vote for Jimmy” pins! Who doesn’t love a sandwich from Jimmy Johns? Also, I’m a huge fan of their chocolate chip cookie!

2012

Weekly Recap:

It was a short blogging week for me, but here’s a quick recap:

Thanks so much for reading! Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts too!

Have a great weekend,

Posted in Let's look

Let’s Look: Your School Pics

I can’t believe it’s already the second Wednesday of the month which means I’m linking up with Shay and Erika for Let’s Look.

So far this year, we’ve looked at:

  • January: your bedside table
  • February: your winter wardrobe
  • March: what’s inside your purse
  • April: Easter at your house
  • May: your weekend
  • June: what’s in your carry on bag
  • July: your summer wardrobe
  • August: your desk

**I must have skipped March and July.

This month’s topic is: Let’s Look at …your school pics!

Of course, I immediately thought of my own kids’ school pics! Those are easy to find because I have a “Twice as Nice” frame on my bedside table which holds each year’s updated pic.

My kids know that on picture day, I’d like to have them look presentable and cute ;)…which basically means I’m asking Hayden to wear a shirt with no words or sports figures on it!

Each year, I’m always so pleased with their photos. It’s a fun surprise to open the envelope to see how they turn out! In 1st grade, the company the district uses started giving background options. So, they take one photo, but then have basic backgrounds as well as school related backgrounds from which to choose.

Here are their photos:

Kindergarten

Toothless photos are my fave!

1st grade

I clearly remember when Hayden saw his 1st grade photos, he said, “Mom, I look like the President!” (#flaginthebackground)

2nd grade

Second grade cuties!

3rd grade

Looking so big in the 3rd grade…especially Hayden with his glasses!

4th grade

I love the 4th grade photos so much…Both of them chose their outfits…and Hadley was really into the side ponytail last year!

Of course, this stroll down memory lane has me wondering about school pics this year. Hopefully, we’ll get back in the building at some point and get a keepsake for this year.

Blast from my past:

Of course, I know some will post photos of their own school pics…so I figured why not. I texted my mom to ask if she had any of my photos handy, and about 30 seconds later she replied with one photo of lots of school pics. I even replied, “Well, that was quick.” She so happened to be at my Gma’s who was sorting through photos at the time.

Anyway, the quickest way to humble yourself is to look at your 1988 permed hair 🀣

O. M. G.

I showed these to Hadley, and she said I look the most like the bottom row, peach cardigan photo. I think that was 8th or 9th grade. At least she didn’t say I still look like top row right… πŸ˜‰ I think I look like little orphan Annie!

An of course, I had to share my 1998 senior photos! My mom gave me the trifold display of these a year or so ago. It now collects dust on a shelf in storage in my basement.

Listen, y’all, overalls were very in style …at least in Missouri!…and I’m guessing my suit was purchased at 5-7-9 in the mall! And…I’m sure I spent too much time trying to get those wispy bangs just right!

So, there’s a look at our school pics! Next month’s topic is: How You Pumpkin.

Thanks so much for reading! Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts too!

Posted in Weekend Top 5

Weekend Wrap Up

Hello and Happy Tuesday! My family enjoyed our 3 day weekend. How about you?

After a full week of school, it was nice knowing we had an extra Monday to relax and reset. Here’s a little recap of our 3 day weekend.

Friday:

Friday evening, I finished reading Wild at Heart. I enjoyed it! Then, later that night, I started In Five Years. I’d been on the wait list at the library for what felt like forever, and it finally arrived for me to pick up. It’s only a two week check out, so I feel the pressure to get it read! πŸ˜‰It’s actually a pretty short book, and it’s good so far. I’m sure I’ll meet the deadline.

Friday evening, Hayden was at a birthday party, Travis was watching the Oaks with a couple friends, and Hadley set herself up a play date. While the girls played, I chatted with the moms in the front yard. Then, we went home for a late dinner.

Saturday:

The kids (and Travis) had cross country practice. While they were gone, I went for a walk…and decided to go off the beaten path a bit…

Homer wanted to remind everyone it was Derby day πŸ˜‰

It wasn’t our typical Derby Day, but Travis kept his longstanding tradition of placing bets πŸ˜‚He basically posted up in the sun room Friday afternoon and then all day Saturday with the tv, his computer, phone, and racing forms. Derby is certainly his favorite day of the year.

The cousins came over to play, and stayed for the race…

They don’t get to see each other often, so it’s nice when they do!

After they left, we grilled out, and honestly all went to bed pretty early for a Saturday night!

Sunday:

I took another walk on Sunday morning. It’s been such beautiful weather that I wanted to take advantage of it.

Hayden started watching Indian in the Cupboard movie. They are reading that book at the tutor’s house; he actually finished reading it on Saturday night!

Of course, Sunday is grocery pick up day, and then Hadley helped me make Andrea’s Pumpkin Sugar Cookies.

Oh my word are these good. Travis worked most of the day, and when he got home, I heard Hayden say, “Dad try these! They are amazing!” #truthyall

I did just use store bought frosting and not homemade.

Hayden was excited because he got NBA 2K21 …with his own money!

The kids played outside most of the day! Then, I made Andrea’s Ravioli Casserole. It was so good and made plenty. (Clearly you need to read Andrea’s blog for dinner and dessert ideas!)

I capped off the evening with a glass of wine on the back patio. I love Sunday night of a 3 day weekend!

When Sunday feels like a Saturday…❀️

Monday:

Monday started off in the best kind of way…not setting an alarm! We took it slow on Monday. Travis had to work, but I actually slept in until 8:00, and the kids slept until 9:00. I enjoyed my coffee before running to the grocery for a few things I needed for Monday night’s dinner. Then, I got a work out in, did laundry, and tried to get us organized for the week!

We ended our Monday with dinner with a few neighbors on their patio. One of our neighbors is moving, so we were celebrating them. We are sad they are leaving our part of town, but they will still be in Lex!

It’s bittersweet for sure…especially for Hadley as it means one of her good friends won’t be just up the street anymore. We’ll have to plan play dates in the future!

Love this crew.

Sweet friends.

The neighbors who are moving gave the other three families this ornament. Love it so much.

It was a lovely evening, and one that we certainly needed. It was good to catch up and let the kids play.

Now, we’re ready to tackle this week of school…as well as baseball, cross country, and dance! I’m already ready for a nap, y’all.

Leaving off on a funny note…My Gma sent this to me, and I laughed! Thankfully, we’ve had a pretty smooth start to the year.

Have a great week!

Posted in Friday Favorites

Friday Favorites

Hello and Happy Friday! We’ve almost made it through our first full week of distance learning, and so far, so good. I’ve said it before, but I will say it again that I’ve been so impressed by my kids’ teachers. They’ve made it an awesome start to the school year. Also, my kids have really been enjoying the tutor’s house as well, so it’s just been a better than expected start for this school year.

Now, “real learning” will start soon, so I know the kids will have more questions and possibly need more assistance once the rigor is kicked up a notch, but I feel like a solid foundation as been laid!

Also, this week, we’ve had extra downtime in the evening which I think has helped, and we’ve gotten back on track with bedtimes, so that’s made it feel more like “back to school.”

Anyway, as always, I’m linking up with Andrea and Erika for some of our Friday Favorites. I hope you’ve had a great week!

Favorite Activities:

Hadley’s taking a few volleyball clinics this month, and the first one was on Sunday. She had fun getting back on the court.

Trav is coaching the kids’ school’s cross country team this year. Due to COVID restrictions, they will have to make some adjustments to how many kids can participate, take temperatures before practices and meets, wearing masks until practice begins, etc. I’m just excited for the kids (and Trav!) that they will be able to run again this season.

I stopped by the first practice, and the yellow flowers were so pretty that I convinced the kids to let me take their pic….only to then realize Hayden was wearing his neck gaiter as a headband πŸ˜‚ Oh well, they are silly, and the flowers are pretty!

And, no pic, but Hayden got in a round of golf on Sunday with Trav and a friend, so he was excited about that.

Favorite Moment:

I meant to share this last week, but we had a sweet moment with the custodian at the kids’ school.

Last week, we took a “recess” break and met some friends at the school. Their main custodian came outside (wearing a mask), and smiled when he saw all the kids playing.

The moms chatted with him for a bit, and then he said he was going to bring the kids some bottled water which they, of course, appreciated. Then, as it was time to go, he was telling them all goodbye, and said to the moms, “Just because we aren’t in school, they are still our kids.” It was such a sweet thing for him to say; I have a feeling that school is too quiet for him right now!

Favorite Food:

Three words for you: Sheet. Pan. Nachos.

Why has it taken me this long to throw some chips on a sheet pan, add taco meat, toppings and bake for a few minutes? I made these Monday night, and they were a hit. I served them with Trader Joe’s Mexican Style Roasted Corn. Easy and delish.

Other Faves:

I love getting pics of the kids from the tutor during the day. It’s fun to see them working and playing! The group pics are often hilarious and a bright spot in the day.

Our niece, who is in grad school, started a business making headbands with a friend. We purchased a few for Hadley, and she loves them. So far, she’s been rotating the camo and cheetah print depending on her outfit 😊

Check out Em and Hayls Headbands on Facebook.

She tied the headband in the back.

Hadley took this selfie…so cute! (and definitely shows her personality!)

Headband tied with the knot up top.

Of course, when Homer is chill and not destroying property, he is our fave πŸ˜‰

Sweet face.

Well, it’s Derby week around here. Derby week is usually filled with festivities, and Travis and I typically go to Oaks. It’s such a bummer that Oaks and Derby are being run in September and with no fans…but I understand the restrictions that have been put into place.

I had to put up a couple Derby decorations to mark the occasion.

By next week, I will probably hang up my pumpkin door hanger! πŸ˜‚

Trader Joe’s Faves:

I made a Trader Joe’s run, and picked up some of our faves.

  • Dill Pickle Hummus (that I usually eat with TJ Thin Mini Crackers) or veggies.
  • Buffalo Chicken Dip (that I usually eat with TJ Corn Chips) or veggies.
  • Tzatziki Cucumber Dip which is perfect with veggies or TJ gyros.
  • Sweet Potato Chips
  • Salami
  • Molasses Cookies (So good that Homer even ate six of them right out of the box a few months ago) #baddog
  • Pita Bite Crackers (perfect for any of the dips or the cheese and salami)
  • Chocolate Covered Marshmallows (So good!)
  • Havarti Cheese with dill (my fave!)

I picked up a few of our other staples like frozen risotto, gnocchi, Mexican style roasted corn, chips and a few other odds and ends.

Trader Joe’s never disappoints!

Favorite Kid Quote:

Hayden and I were watching a close KC Royals baseball game where the bases were loaded (for the other team). Hayden said, β€œI can’t watch this!” And took off his glasses 🀣He’s basically blind without the glasses, and I couldn’t stop laughing!

Favorite Mom Meme:

Team Forever Exhausted over here!

Bonus Fave: Flashback Friday

As always, I love to share Facebook memories, and I love these pics from 2011.

Listen, I can’t remember what I wore yesterday, but I actually remember taking these pics. I had just returned home from a consignment sale that was hosted by Bluegrass Parents of Twins and Multiples Club. I tried a few of the clothes on the kids (and this was probably the last time Hayden wore jeans!) πŸ˜‰

Hadley with the book and sassy face was par for the course back then. Hayden, holding Trav’s phone, and giving me the sweet smile is forever a fave pic!

Then, their first day of preschool popped up the other day. They had the best sitter when they were little, but the year before kindergarten, I signed them up for preschool two days a week (and they went to the sitter the other three days).

This was a great trial run for kindergarten, and we put them in separate classes which proved to be a wise choice…and set the tone for elementary school. Hayden needed to rip off the” Hadley doing everything for him and speaking for him” Band-Aid! πŸ˜‚

I remember Hadley being so excited and Hayden being very hesitant, which, again, shows the differences in their personalities.

I’m not sure where Hayden’s backpack and lunchbox are, but I love this pic.

Weekly Recap:

I hope everyone has a great three day weekend! Thanks so much for reading.

Posted in Kids, School

Distance Learning Routine

Well, we’ve been doing distance learning for one week now. We are not pros at this, but we’ve been implementing a few tips/tricks/routines over the past week to get us in back to school mode.

Last week, was a lot of “get to know you” activities with their teachers and classmates. They also had Zooms and videos with their specials teachers about supplies they’ll need and tours of classrooms. I was really impressed with all that the teachers planned to keep the kids engaged. Their virtual classrooms are impressive with links to Zoom, the schedule, the 5th grade website and more. Also, my kids were in small groups via breakout groups and teachers incorporated mini breaks throughout the day which became the perfect time to grab a snack, gather supplies, or quickly fill me on what they needed to do next.

This week, they’ve been taking pre-assessments for math and reading while also beginning regular coursework with their teachers.

And, so far, juggling between the tutor’s house and the days they work at our house has been going very smoothly.

Hayden working on a class assignment.
Hadley, hard at work, while Homer supervises.

Distance Learning Routine:

  • Technically, the kids need to wake up a little earlier on days they go to the tutor’s house, but I’ve been keeping bedtime and wake up time consistent no matter which day it is. For the at home days, they are just a little less rushed or have more time for morning work or to complete a household chore πŸ˜‰
  • During the regular school year and even summer, I have them get dressed, make their bed, and brush their teeth. Even if I know it’s a lazy day in the summer (or on the weekend), or an at home learning day, I still think it’s important for them to get out of their pajamas and get the bed made.
  • I have them log on about 30 minutes before they are supposed to just so I can see what’s due for the day. That way at the end of the day, I can ask them if they’ve turned in “x, y, and z.”
  • I also have them make sure they have their supplies ready for the day. The Chomebooks are in their rooms with their other supplies, but we keep all the textbooks on a shelf in the hall closet. So, I have them grab what they need to start the day.
  • Since they are on their computers quite a bit, I try to limit technology during the day. So when they have a bigger break, I may let them watch a show while eating lunch, but no Xbox, Ipod, Ipad, etc. during that time. Their break in the middle of the day is time for lunch, recess, and then typing or reading. So, I make sure they understand how to use that time: relax/take a break, eat, play outside, type/read.
  • I try to have a couple of snacks out for them to grab when they need them. I had thought about packing a lunch even for “at home” days, so they wouldn’t need to interrupt me for help with that, but we haven’t done that yet. I either have had a natural break from work to make their lunch, or they are pretty self-sufficient with making lunch. Hadley will even make soup or Spaghetti O’s on the stove for them!
  • They know they don’t have to always stay in their rooms while working! I do like that their desks in their rooms are “home base” for supplies, and they start their morning in their rooms for morning meeting and specials. Then, they usually bring their computer to the kitchen table for typing or Hayden sat on the couch with his computer for the end of the day meeting. I don’t want them to feel confined to their rooms, and they’ve done a good job being quiet if the other is still working.
  • While their teachers follow the same schedule, sometimes one class may finish before the other. Also, I didn’t want Homer being loud and barking while they are on their Zooms. So, we put Homer in the kennel during their main work time in the morning and afternoon. Homer likes his kennel, and when life is normal, he’s used to being there during the day.
  • Lastly, and I’ve only done this one time so far, but when they logged off for the day last Friday, I had them tidy up their work spaces. They made sure their Chromebooks were plugged in, put away supplies in their baskets and cart, stacked their books up to put in the closet, and pushed in the desk chair…similar to what they would do if they were in school.

We are far from having distance learning/virtual school mastered, but so far this routine has been good for us. Also, I’m so happy with our decision to send them to the tutor two days a week. It’s good for all of us that they have that option, and they’ve been enjoying their time there too.

How’s school going for your kids (and you!) so far this year? I’d love any more tips and tricks to add to our routine.

Happy learning!