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Evening Swim

July 30, 2014

Hitting the neighborhood pool for an evening swim is a great way to cap off a weeknight at our house.  We don’t do it very often because after coming home from a day of work and school, plus getting dinner on the table and everything packed and prepped for the next day, there just isn’t enough time.

But the boys love when we take a special evening dip in the pool.  It tends to be less crowded at night so they have free reign.  Plus, they are loving their Puddlejumpers and all the freedom it gives them in the deep end.

evening swim

Sometimes it’s fun to mix up the routine – just because.  And make an ordinary weeknight extra special.  This particular weeknight, we came home for a special halfbirthday celebration of this cutie:

 

halfbdaypool

Next up is signing up these little fish for swim lessons.  They’d be in big trouble without their Puddlejumpers in the deep end, so it’s time to learn!

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The Best Baby Gift

July 29, 2014

The picture below includes one of the best baby gifts I’ve ever received:

towel

Did you guess what it is?

Nope, it’s not their hair care products or sweet-smelling lotion.

towel1

It’s these.  Adorable, fluffy towels with their names on them.

towel2

These came from my BFF’s mom. She made towels with each of their names and the cool thing is, even though I got them two years apart (when each kid was born), the both have the same polka dot fabric to make up their names, so they look cohesive. Yes, M.S. rocks!

towel3

Yep, these babies get a lot of use in our house.

towel4 towel5

 

And one more shot of the sweet, cuddly brothers – modeling their after-shower dress:

 

 

 

towel6

If you’re looking for a great idea for a newly minted baby – these towels are great and they “grow” with the kids.  Not many baby gifts can say that.

 

towel7 towel8

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Growing boys

July 28, 2014

I’ve noticed that our grocery bill has definitely continued to creep up over the past 6 months.  With growing boys who love to run around and expend energy all day, they are bound to eat lots!

During a recent Mom/Boys date while daddy was golfing, we hit the IHOP for a morning of delicious pancakes.  After all, we’d completed a 4 mile run/bike/stroller ride and everyone was famished!

Landon got the kids Rooty Tooty and finished the WHOLE THING! Eggs, pancake with fruit, bacon and sausage!

And Brooks loved his chocolate chip smiley pancake.

growing boys

 

I told Dean he’d need to get a second job at a restaurant with employee discounts to help feed these kids when they become teenagers!  :)

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Bucket List Goal: Half Marathon

July 25, 2014

I’ve decided that this is the year I’m going to cross something off of my bucket list/goals.  Running a half marathon.

I enjoy running. The way it clears my mind. My own personal time to reflect and think about life. It’s often some of my best planning/creative-thought time.  And now I’m going to have a set schedule of it!

I’m planning to do training this fall – Oct/Nov timeframe (when it’s a little cooler outside), so I’m going to start looking at my options for half marathons around December.   I don’t know if I have a goal for it yet – as far as a time.  I know it would be awesome to do something under 2 hours, but that is a VERY fast pace for me – 9 min miles for 13 of them!

This past weekend I went out and ran just to see how far I could run and I did a 9 miler. My previous best was 7 miles, so I know that I can do it, my concern is how well my knees will hold up during training.

This is always something I’ve wanted to cross off of my bucket list, so here we go.

I guess this means I’m committing to lots more of these views:

running

 

PS – I figure if I post this on my blog, I can’t back out :)  So, here’s to commitment!

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Recipe: Walnut Pesto

July 24, 2014

With our garden growing like crazy, we’ve had tons of basil and I can only eat so much tomato, basil, mozzarella salad!

So I decided to make some basil-walnut pesto with a bunch of basil.

Here is the recipe in pictures:

pestopics

 

 

It was super simple – two small handfuls of walnuts, a ton of fresh basil, about a 1/4 c of Parmesan cheese and I mixed in olive oil until it became a thick paste. Then season with S&P as needed.

Note to self:  It was not easy with my blender, it didn’t seem to rip the leaves very easily and it was a lot of stop, tamper with a spoon, stop, tamper, stop, tamper.  If i had a food processor, I would have used it for this.

And here was the final product:

pestofinal

 

What else do you make with an over abundance of fresh herbs?

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Mom Time

July 23, 2014

I love having “Mom Time” with my kids.  Often on Saturday mornings, I get to spend extra time with these guys.  Lately, I’ve been taking them on my Sat morning runs and while pushing the stroller makes the run extra challenging, it’s sweet time with my kids.

Usually Brooks chills in the stroller and asks 20,000 questions while I huff and puff. “Mom, what’s that kind of flower?”  “Mom, did you see that owl?” (Sometimes, I have to tell him no more questions until I can catch my breath!)

And Landon rocks it out on his bike. He’s been getting better and better with the distance. He used to stop 5 times during the ride and now it’s only 1-2 times (and the last times he had 0 breaks!!)  When it gets extra tough on the long inclines, we’ll play – “would you rather… “- to help him keep his mind off of his burning legs.  (You know… “would you rather eat pizza or ice cream?” “Would you rather go to the pool or to the playground?”)

Then if they are up for it, we’ll hit the school playground across from our neighborhood and I’ll get in a little bit of “faster/no stroller running” in while they play on the slides.

Usually they do about 3-3.5 miles and then I do about an extra mile while they play. It’s definitely a win-win-win. (And 4 miles pushing a stroller is infinitely harder than 6 miles alone!!) :)

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I love these sweet things and our mom time!

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I’m not going to play.

July 22, 2014

After several days of complete chaos in the kids play room, I told the boys that they needed to do a better job of cleaning up their toys after playtime and not leaving them out everywhere.

Landon responded, “Well, I’m just not going to play.”

Isn’t that a funny response.  Instead of having a great time playing for hours and doing about 5 minutes of clean up, his response is to not play.

It hit me – wow, I can completely relate to that.

- How often do I choose not to do paint projects with the kids because I know how long it will take to set up and clean up?

- How often do I skip taking my kids to the store because it’s a hassle for me to unbuckle and buckle both kids over and over at each stop?

- How often do I think of a cool home decorating idea, but never do it because I don’t want to put in the effort?

Sometimes I need to remind myself to take the extra effort, to embrace the mess, and do things with my kids or for myself, even if it takes some extra work.

Working all week long, sometimes the last thing I want is the extra work, but isn’t it worth it when you see those little eyes light up during the fun project or how amazing it is to see your room transformed through a little bit of elbow grease.

Sometimes, you just gotta play.  And know the mess was worth it!

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