Archive for the ‘Seasons’ Category

Owen needs new shoes desperately.  He’s down to own pair and the soles are wearing down and his feet are definitely outgrowing them.  Plus they were hand-me-downs from Ryan so they’ve seen better days.  Much better days.

Owen seems to outgrow shoes so quickly.  Much quicker than Ryan did.  Or at least it feels that way.  And with the various school requirements it makes summer shoe shopping next to impossible.  They can’t have open toe shoes; they can’t have open heels either.  So what shoe options are left for this hot, humid Atlanta summer weather?

Not many.

In my countless hours of searching both in stores and online, I did come across these Boys canvas shoes.  I love them!  They meet all day care requirements with closed toe and closed heel and they are very airy which would be comfortable during the hot Atlanta summers.  Check, check and check.

You really don’t realize how tough it is to find shoes that are cute, comfortable, wear well and are closed toe/closed heel until you’ve had to search for all of these requirements in one shoe.  It’s not easy.  Oh and did I mention that I don’t want to spend a small fortune on them either?  Kids shoes are so darn expensive.  And I don’t understand why since there is hardly any material to them.  They’re small.

Another issue I always seem to have is what size do I need to buy?  It’s a little easier to determine if I have Owen (or Ryan) with me at the store and I can see how their feet fit inside a sandal.  On closed toe shoes it is extremely difficult to tell because I cannot always feel wear their toes end in the shoe.  And what if I’m trying to order the shoes online?  I always end up with the wrong size.  Always.

Start-Rite has their own shoe fitting guides with a complete video on how to measure your child’s foot.  Pretty cool if you ask me.

I haven’t tried this Click’n’Fit guide yet because I still need to determine if I can have a pair of these awesome shoes shipped to the US since they are made in the UK.   But I can guarantee that if I can find a way to order them, Owen will be sporting a new pair real soon.  Keep your fingers crossed!


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Another week is gone and another Tuesday is here!  Another busy week behind us and I’m sure another on the way.

This week’s Tuesday Ten is a listing of the ten places I have traveled to that I love, love, love!

  1. New York City, NY:  I love the busyness of this city and everything it has to offer.  I love how there are so many people in such a small area and how there is always something to do at any given moment regardless what that desire is.  I love all the culture including the Broadway shows, restaurants, museums and of course shopping!
  2. Minnneapolis, MN:  The land of 10,000 lakes.  I love the Spring, Summer and Fall there (notice how there is no mention of Winter?!).  I love boating and biking and walking and spending time down by the lakes in South Minneapolis.  Love this city!
  3. Breckenridge, CO:  We got married there.  We got married at this really cute little yellow church with a red door by the most awesome pastor ever.  We rented out this bed and breakfast in Dillon, CO for our family and friends to stay in for our wedding weekend.  What a beautiful weekend it was.  It even snowed that weekend while we spent time in the hot tub.  Oh, I should mention that our wedding was June 11 so snow was not expected.
  4. Gordon, WI:  This is the place where our cabin is located.  I love Gordon, WI.  Things are simple there.  Cell phone reception is not great.  Beers are $1.50 each and you can see Northern Lights and shooting stars as you sit around a bonfire at night.  Everything is just so still and calm there.  You can hear the leaves crunch under your feet as you walk and as the geese land on the lake you can hear the swooshing sound the water makes when they hit the water.
  5. St. Maarten:  Who wouldn’t love it here?!  Are you kidding me?  Sandy white beaches, clear blue waters and relaxation around every corner.  Aaaaahhhhhh……
  6. Big Canoe, GA:  Hiking trails, lakes, winding roads and beautiful views.  It reminds me of a mix between the Rocky Mountain towns (Breck, Vail, Aspen, etc.) with a little bit of Gordon, WI thrown in.
  7. Denver, CO:  The mile high city.  There are views of the mountains everywhere you look.  It’s the most dog friendly city I have ever been to; there are places to hike, bike and jog; and you encounter wildlife every where you go.  And for all of you who think that Denver gets tons of snow and has really cold winters, you’d be surprised!  It’s not what you think…. It’s not only the mile high city, it’s the mild, mile high city.
  8. Middle of the Ocean:  Cruises.  I love cruises.  We’ve been fortunate to be able to go on two of them since Jim and I have been together.  We got engaged on one and we went on one as a family last Christmas with Jim’s grandmother, mother, step-dad, aunt, uncle and cousin.  It was a blast.  You can read more about that adventure here.  So much fun.  In fact it was so much fun that every morning when Ryan wakes up we ask him “Ryan, what did you dream about last night?” and his response is always “The ship-boat.  And the beach.  I built a sandcastle on the beach momma.”  Yes, it has been 6 months since we went, but every morning he talks about it and swears he has dreamt about it.  Me too, Ryan, me too.
  9. London, England:  It felt like London was a cross between NYC and Chicago.  They had an awesome Broadway scene, great restaurants and tons of historical venues to visit.  It had the busy feel of NYC in a smaller setting like Chicago.  It was so easy to get around on the Tube.  Or maybe it was my unofficial tour guide (thanks Joel B.).  I loved my experience there and would love to go back some day.
  10. Our Home, GA:  I love our home.  I have traveled for years over the course of my career and while I loved every single minute of it (well almost), I absolutely love being home with my boys.  I love having a routine and sleeping in my own bed each and every night.  I love seeing the smiles on my little guys every morning and I love to kiss them goodnight each night and snuggle with them before they drift off to sleep.  I love our home and those inside of it.

Where are some of your favorite places to visit?  What makes them special to you?

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Am I referring to the inseparable brothers who do absolutely everything together and mimic each others every move?

Or I am referring to the pea pods that are now thriving in my garden?

We discovered the pea pods on Friday and have been enjoying eating them all weekend fresh from the garden.  Yum!  Who would have thought that we’d be eating fresh veggies so soon after we planted our garden?  I wasn’t expecting to have anything edible until much later in the summer.  I guess I thought that because I grew up in Wisconsin and that far north you can’t even plant a garden until end of May or into June.  But here in Atlanta we had our garden planted the middle of April.  Those are some of the perks to this ridiculously hot and humid weather we’ve been having lately.

Our garden started here and now we’ve grown it to this.

Yay me!  I’m officially a gardener.  And not the kind I was doubting here. But don’t ask about the peach tree.  That’s a sad, sad story that I will share later this week.  I’m hopeful that I’ve managed to save it and don’t want to report on it has made a complete comeback.  Doesn’t sound good huh?!

Interested in reading more from other garden bloggers?  Here are a few I suggest:  Feet off the Table, Dreamfarm Girl, and It Keeps Getting Better.  If you have any other suggestions, please feel free to leave them in the comments.

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Seriously.  Who gardens in their pajamas?

The day started out normal just as any other weekend day does.  Some yummy omelets cooked by daddy; a hot cup of coffee; and outdoor playtime in pajamas before the morning dew has a chance to disappear.  Our feet were soaked from the damp grass and mommy just had the urge to go pull a weed from the hill.  There was just one that was bothering me amongst the thousands on the hillside.  I just had to get that one.

And that’s when it got interesting.  If you pull weeds when the ground is still damp they pull up much easier and the roots come up too.  Our backyard here in Georgia is normally ridiculously hard and clayish.  There are tons of rocks in the ground making it really difficult to have a flat smooth yard.  It’s been an ongoing process to keep this hill cleared of weeds this summer.  Plus our weeds tend to grown about a million times faster than our actual flowers, plants and vegetables making it that much more of a challenge.  In addition our root system for our weeds is ridiculous.  They are so intertwined and goes up and down and back and forth all across the hill.  It’s like a puzzle of roots up there.  We were finding root balls with many (thick) roots branching off in every direction.

So when I discovered that the roots were coming up so easily with the weeds, I went full force ahead on pulling them.  Daddy even came up the hill to help dig up some of the roots.  Maybe, just maybe if we can get the weeds by the roots we can eliminate some of the crazy fast growth up there. And since the sun was shining bright and starting to come over the top of the house our time was limited before the ground would be dry again and rock hard.  There was no time to go change in to appropriate gardening clothes so yes, I admit it.  I was weeding in flannel pajama bottoms, a t-shirt and flip-flops.

Quite the appropriate attire wouldn’t you agree??  And yes, your eyes are seeing correctly.  Those are indeed Christmas reindeer flannel pajama bottoms.  And yes, it is May in Atlanta.

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Where did the week go?  How can it be Feature Friday time already?!  In the last week I have created my Feature Friday logo, visited hundreds of new blogs, been featured on WordPress Freshly Pressed (article here), planned and executed a Summer Kickoff party for a 300+ home neighborhood, designed some wedding invitations, worked on a Memories of Mom scrapbook for someone, worked full time at my office job, blogged and gardened.  That’s all on top of my favorite job of raising my two little men.  Hmmmm…. no wonder the week has flown by!

And since I mentioned gardening, I would like to move right into my Feature Friday for today.  I was introduced to Feet off the Table through a gardening post that I did several weeks ago.  We made a few comments on each other’s blog and it turns out that we have a lot in common.  From kids, to gardens to Wisconsin roots, I’ve had a lot of fun getting to know Aliceson and am thankful that the blogging world has brought this new friend and connection.

With a fun blog title like Feet off the Table, how could you not want to go check her site out!  She includes a lot of really great photos in her posts.  It makes me miss my Wisconsin roots!!  I may live in Atlanta now, but did you know I’m originally from Wisconsin??  Aaahh… I miss it.  Not in the wintertime of course, but this time of year there is wonderful!

So go check out her blog, leave her a comment and tell her I sent you 😉  And if you’d like to be considered for an upcoming Feature Friday, please leave me a comment with your blog so that I can check you out.  I really enjoyed checking out all of the blogs left last week and can’t wait to feature some!

If you’d like to do your own Feature Friday on your blog, just grab the button above or just link back to my site and then submit your blog link via Linky Tools below.

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Click here to enter your link and view the entire list of entered links…

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The weekend had it’s share of ups and downs. Saturday just wasn’t a great day.  I woke up crabby and stayed that way all day.  It seemed like just as my mood would start to improve the phone would ring and again bring on my bad mood or the boys would fight and argue and whine and cry and again, my mood would turn back to crabby.  It was ridiculous.   It just seemed like I couldn’t catch a break to turn my mood around.

So with such a bad mood and crabby kids on a rainy, Saturday morning we decided to set the jump house up in the toy room.  Call us crazy, but it was a blast.  Plus the boys were extremely tired for nap time afterwards.  Aaaahhh…. what a great plan.

The weekend wasn’t so, so terrible, but it just wasn’t as great as the last few we had.  Last weekend we planted the garden and spent the entire weekend outside; the weekend before that we had the Taylor’s in Atlanta and the two weekends before that we had Grandma Marge, Aunt Nancy and cousin Catherine in Atlanta.  This weekend was just blah. I think it would have been better had we not lost some digital photos (and then spent $60 to recover them!); had not had a rainy Saturday which made our backyard unusable on Sunday too because of the pools of water in our backyard; had not had a splitting headache all weekend; and had not had to deal with Saturday morning.  Ugh.

Some of the positive things included:

  1. Silly, happy, funny boys (for the most part).
  2. Setting up the jump house indoors!
  3. Beautiful Sunday weather.
  4. A walk to the park and having a 20 month old with zero fear as he heads straight down the slide.
  5. Pizza & beer on Friday night.
  6. Steak dinner on Sunday.
  7. Friends over on Saturday night (and they brought groceries and made dinner!).  You rock Micah!
  8. Finishing about 15 digital scrapbook pages via My Hello Designs.
  9. Seeing my corn and peas  sprouting through the dirt!!!

Some of the negative things included:

  1. Missing All Aboard for a Cure walk to support Mitochondrial disease.  This was a real negative.
  2. The rainy, icky day on Saturday which made the backyard unusable all weekend due to the pools of water still in our yard.  HGTV Yard Crashers I NEED YOU!!!
  3. A terrible headache.
  4. Losing some great digital photos.
  5. Spending $60 to purchase a program to recover those great digital photos.
  6. A terrible night sleep on Saturday night.  Seriously terrible.
  7. A particular email received on Friday night.
  8. Cell phone isn’t working correctly (won’t open email to read them and battery life drains in several hours).
  9. Having a dog who pukes at least twice a day if not more.  At least she does it outside and not in the house.
  10. Missing having friends and/or family visiting us in Atlanta.

There were a few other things that set my tone inappropriately, but I can’t get into all of it on our blog.  But on the flip side, I am so excited that my corn and my peas have started to sprout; there is a little green poking through the ground and I’m ecstatic!  It only took one week and we officially have a garden growing!

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We took the kids on an adventure to the park to release some energy.  With four kiddos in the house with a ton of energy we thought we’d head to the park to release some of that before bedtime.  We had a delicious steak dinner on the grill along with some adult beverages and then off to the park we went!

Owen discovered the slide and learned how to climb up the stairs and go down the slide all on his own.  He absolutely loved it.  Up the stairs, down the slide. Up the stairs, down the slide.  Up the stairs, down the slide.  Up the stairs, down the slide.  It just never got old.  Sadie on the other hand was enjoying hanging out at the bottom of the slide.  She thought it was pretty cool to put the wood chips on the bottom of the slide for Owen to come through.  She also enjoyed going down the slide with a little help.  She had a big smile on her face the entire way down.

Sadie Going Down the Slide

Sadie Being Goofy

Ryan heading down the slide

Sadie Having So Much Fun!

Owen LOVING the Slide

Sylvie with Crazy Hair

Sylvie and Ryan had fun walking on the wall and balancing.  They did this over and over and over again as well.  I just love how the pictures of Sylvie turned out on the wall.  With that beautiful background, the lighting, those cute, cute colorful pants and the absolutely adorable girl being photographed the pictures turned out awesome.

Ryan Balancing

Sylvie Balancing

Sylvie So Focused

Sylvie Walking All By Herself on the Wall

The kids all took turns swinging as well. I think Sylvie was getting a little annoyed with all the photos being taken, but she was a good sport and put a smile on for me anyway.

Sylvie Swinging

More Swinging

Sadie Swinging

Sadie - Is she scared or having fun?

Swing Fun

And on top of all that fun we played in the wood chips, practiced climbing and Sadie was on a mission to walk.

Owen Playing Wood Chips

Ryan Having Fun!

Owen Hanging Out

Sadie Walking

Owen Playing in More Wood Chips

Sadie - It wasn't me!!

Ryan Climbing

On our way home we took the lake route and visited with the ducks and geese out on our lake.  The kids through rocks into the water and had a great time.

Mission accomplished.  Everyone was tired when we got home for bedtime.  Including all parents!  What is your kiddos favorite thing to do at the park?

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