Friday, May 26, 2017

Friday Favorites!

HAPPY FRIDAY MY FRIENDS!!! I'm doin' my usual link-up with Narci for Friday Favorites! Join in!

1) Outdoor dining! I think that Plano/DFW in general is finally catching on to the idea of creating a space for the kiddos to play while the parents take a little break......I shared Chips Hamburgers with y'all a couple weeks ago, which we have frequented almost every week since! We went with some friends last Friday, and excuse me, but doesn't this look like a little Plano magazine add???

Anyway, we found another outdoor dining/play area gem this week, called Hub Streat in Downtown Plano. It is adorable and so relaxing! They have an outdoor area, pool tables, food trucks, and "watering hole" if you will... ; ) Also a stage for live music, but on the day we went, it was just a stage for the kiddos to dance on!  

2) This week, Jeremie's grandparents celebrated 65 years of marriage. Y'all. Rest on that a minute. SIXTY-FIVE YEARS. We are rounding year 8 and we're like "WOW...marriage is hard." Ha! Child's play to them. 

J's grandparents' love, friendship, bond, and dedication to the Lord is incredible. We flooded their Facebook page this week with tributes of what they have passed down to ALL the generations of "fruit"....And of course, Jeremie had to reflect this in a costume. 

I'm pretty sure he NAILED IT. 

P.S. The suspenders and newsboy hat makes me want to dress Greyson up like a 1920's child every day. He was super into the suspenders the rest of the week. 

3) Speaking of dress-up, G has gotten super "vocal" about his wardrobe choices this week.  On this particular day, we were going to the splash we started with that. Then he found a cowbell, which made him think of Mississippi State...which made him think of his Dak Prescott jersey. I told him that Dak actually now plays for the Cowboys, which led to the cowboy boots....and then we got to packing our beach bag, and he found the floatie. So there you go. If Dak Prescott were a Caucasian Cowboy toddler going to the splash pad, this is exactly what he would look like! 

But I think that this would make Dak happy, because he is always smiling and happy and we love him!

4) Speaking of the SPLASH PAD! We took advantage of no schedule and joined a couple super fun playdates with the Dallas and Collin County Moms Blogs! (If you're local, you definitely need to check out their pages for summer events!

We made our FIRST splash pad trip of 2017....


And went to The Playdate Co. in Richardson, which was adorable and so fun!

This is sweet little Ford. He and Greyson were born on the same day, at the same hospital, and funny enough, his Mom's name is Kate. We knew "of" them when they were born (Jeremie was in a bible study Kate's dad was doing).  But we officially met as we were being rolled in wheelchairs into the elevators to take these little guys home! Now the boys go to the same preschool! And listen-they were two peas in a pod with all their tools at The Playdate Co! They followed each other around everywhere! 

5) And SPEAKING OF PLAYDATES! If you missed this post on Tuesday, be informed that you are invited to a SUMMER O' FUN playdate on Wednesday! This is a "come one come all" playdate! If you're local, feel free to join us as we swap summer ideas and let the kids play! Can't wait!

SUMMER O' FUN Launch Party and Playdate
Jack Carter Playground on Wednesday, May 31st @ 10:00 a.m.
(Address for playground is 2800 Maumelle Dr. Plano, TX)

You can download and print your own SUMMER O' FUN Bucket List here!


Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Well, it's here Mamas. We have almost made it through the chaos of May and on the border of the school year finish line!

I'm still unpacking the book bag and all the 4,328 pieces of art work they sent home on the last day of Mother's Day Out. I'll admit, I was sad to have my routine slowly slip through my fingers as bible study and school ended. BUT, I am super excited to have the freedom from schedule and to start creating and executing the things on the 2017 "Summer O' Fun" List!

If you'll recall, last summer, I had the same "breathe into a paper bag moment" the day after school ended, but then I went all Operation Summertime, and with a quick mental switch, a free printable, and a banner (YES A BANNER), I quickly turned into the most excited summertime Mama you ever did see. (You can read all about that here.) I declared it the SUMMER O' FUN, and LISTEN. IT WAS SO FUN. We did parks, zoos, splash pads, service projects, aquariums, ice cream dates, indoor play places, backyard parties, cupcake baking, and everything in between! (I wish I knew how to link all my Summer O'Fun posts together, but if you just click on 2016 to the right, you can find all 13 weeks of recap under June, July and August!)

Don't get me wrong. There were still "admin" days at home. And there were certainly some days that the Summer-Magic Fairy forgot to sprinkle her dust on us. And yes, by August, I was over it and if smelled any more sunscreen I thought I might go off the deep end. BUT ultimately, it was the best summer I've had in a long time! And the Summer O' Fun list just gave me something to look forward to and by creating a variety of options (at home or outing type activities), I was never left sitting and wondering what we were gonna do that day! To give you an was last year's Bucket List:

I'm gonna do my best to recreate it this year! I noticed last year that several of my gals started joining in on the party, creating their own list, and sharing their GREAT ideas! This area is SO BIG that someone is CONSTANTLY telling me something/somewhere I don't know about! 

SOOOO.....that brought me to an idea! Let's put our heads and lists together and have a SUMMER O' FUN LAUNCH PARTY/PLAYDATE! You bring YOUR ideas, and I'll bring mine! We'll all leave with more fun things than we can squeeze into 13 weeks of SUMMER! 

The SUMMER O' FUN Launch Party and Playdate will take place at my new favorite: 
Jack Carter Playground on Wednesday, May 31st @ 10:00 a.m.
(Address for playground is 2800 Maumelle Dr. Plano, TX)

This is nothing fancy-just a chance for our kiddos to play while we load our arsenal with great ideas! This is also an OPEN invitation to anyone who is local! So if you're reading this, you're welcome to join us! 

Get your printable Summer O' Fun Bucket list here! After the playdate, I'll combine all the ideas and report back here! 

I can't wait! Hope to see y'all there!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friday Favorites

Top O' the morning to ya and HAPPY FRIDAY! This week has gone by in lightning speed and here we are at the end of the school year and beginning of summer!  I'm linking up with Momfessionals today for Friday Favorites! You MUST GO to the bottom of her post and watch the "reasonable bathing suit" video.  If G weren't still asleep I WOULD HAVE laughed loud. But you KNOW WE DON'T LOL or anything "OL"when the cherub is asleep!!!

Join in and share your Friday Favorites!

1) My little tribe is my favorite! So are last minute trips to the park. We usually have to go 20 rounds when we are trying to schedule something, but thankfully, everyone randomly just showed up with one hour notice and it was fabulous!

Our little ones are really starting to "know" each other and it was so sweet watching them play together!
I did experience my first little "emergency" with G at the park that day though. I can't explain how without you seeing the apparatus, but he got his leg SO STUCK between a couple bars on one of the play pieces and y'all....IT. WAS. STUCK. We slathered lotion on it for a couple minutes and he started to freak out, and I started to freak out, and was about 2 seconds from calling the fire department. Luckily, one of my friend's hubby was at the park and he started wiggling G's leg up  the bars and set it free! His name is Chase so OF COURSE we had to take FULL advantage of singing the Paw Patrol theme song and shouting "Chase is on the case!" I'm so glad I didn't have to get the fire fighters to saw apart the brand new playground.

2) I had the most fabulous hot date to celebrate our 8 years of marriage! We had a sitter from 5:00 to 10:00!!! That is an entire day to a parent. We pretty much walked the sitter straight through the door, into the sandbox with G and said PEACE. We headed down to Trinity Groves and enjoyed the most amazing rooftop views from Saint Rocco's and then headed to Amberjax for the BEST seafood dinner I think I've ever had. The views and food were spectacular but the company was the best. It was so nice to get all gussied up and have some uninterrupted time together!

3) I got an amazing perk through Collin County Moms Blog for a 45 minute facial at Kate Somerville in Neiman Marcus and it was AMAZING.  I went away with some cream that's supposed to reduce wrinkles, moisturize, "plump up" my skin, and essentially save the planet. Hopefully I'll be looking 20 again by next week.

4) Speaking of the Moms Blog, I've had the best time working with them and my new little gig as their Community Manager! It's no huge position, but just being involved with this team has already been so fun! Working their Bloom event in Dallas last week and Downtown McKinney last night was so fun! Dallas and Collin County both have some fun events coming up, you should check it out!



5) Yesterday was the last day of Mother's Day Out. Half of me wants to breath into a paper bag, and the other half is SUPER EXITED about summertime with no schedule!!! Greyson looked like such a big boy yesterday. It blows my mind that my tiny baby is already done with his second year of MDO!

6) SPEAKING OF Summertime... Last year, we had the best time coming up with our Summer O' Fun Bucket List and can't wait to do it again this summer! So I'll have some fun stuff coming up about this soon! Start getting YOUR list together!

HAPPY FRIDAY and have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

10 Ways You Know You're Potty Training

I know I've really been hovering around the potty training topic quite a bit lately, and I'm sorry. Well, not really.  This is my life right now. I feel like the potty emoji will probably sum up 2017 for me. Those of you are tired of hearing about, STOP READING and click the little X on your browser. Otherwise, welcome to my world, friends. If you are potty training, I feel like you'll share the same sentiments.

So here we go!

1) You've spent just as much money on character underwear as you did on diapers. Maybe more. Listen. I started out frugal and would faithfully hose down underwear at the end of the day. But some are just unredeemable.  Especially when you're away from the house. That's NOT coming home with me. Once less trip to Chic-Fil-A would buy us a brand new 10 pack.

2) You post about your child's potty victories on Social Media. Can I just say I'M SORRY for judging you parents in my pre-baby life for sharing with the world that Little Johnny went potty at school? But really- THAT IS A BIG DEAL. When people get promotions or land a big deal at work, that is certainly social media worthy. Well, this is MY job. So when we have victories, I wanna shout it from the rooftops too.

3) You ride around with a portable potty in the back of your car. When I lifted the gate at my Wal-Mart grocery pickup the other day, the guy had a questionable look on his face when he loaded all my groceries right beside the mini-squatter. I'm sure that breaks all kind of health-code standards, but hey-it's saved me more than once and Lysol wipes can work wonders.

4) You alert EVERYONE that YOU have to potty. I say to Greyson "Tell me BEFORE you have to go potty" SO MUCH that I think I've picked up this habit through osmosis. I was literally in the middle of a conversation with my girls at church the other day and I interrupted and said "I have to go potty"...and they were like "Thanks for letting us know."

5) When you go out in public you IMMEDIATELY eye ALL potty locations like the Exit doors on a plane. 

6) You have STRATEGY meetings with your spouse that rivals the White House Situation Room. Negative reinforcement? Positive Reinforcement? Time Out? Spankings? Ice Cream? Let him follow his own body signals or take him every 30 minutes? Which wire should we cut? AS IF WE HAD ANY CONTROL OVER THIS SITUATION.

7) You sing the Daniel Tiger Potty song to yourself when YOU have to potty. SERIOUSLY, I woke up in the middle of the night recently and had to use the bathroom, and I was SINGING THE POTTY SONG IN MY HEAD. "If you gotta go potty STOP and go right away....flush and wash and be on your way..."

8) You CRINGE when a person tells you: "Honey, I promise, he won't be 16 and still pooping in his pants".  I totally get their point, but my initial reaction is WELL HE BETTER NOT BE. In fact, he better not be FOUR and still pooping in his pants. I realize that people are trying to point out that in the long run, these months are peanuts. But I'm in the trenches, and to reference 13 YEARS AWAY seems like a million to me right now. I need solutions and answers and a lot more patience.

9) You haven't moved this fast since high school.  When I see that look on Greyson's face; I am like the SPEED OF LIGHT.

10) You carry latex gloves in your bag. For those special toys that get dropped into public potties. That's ALL I'm gonna say about that.

Okay! So know you know! I'd LOVE to hear some of yours! Have a great day and may the potty odds be ever in your favor!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Friday Favorites

HAPPY FRIDAY Y'ALL! Whew! We made it! I've gone to bed LATE every night this week and I'm strugglin' this morning!  But Friday's still my favorite and as usual, I'm linking up with Narci to report my Friday Favorites! Join in on the link up!

1) SAY HELLO TO MY LITTLE FRIEND. I'm happy to report that I am typing this post from my very own MacBook. YES. Now, let me tell you, this has been a long time comin'. My old laptop was killed in the fire and so 2.5 years I've been using this HUGE MACHINE that I like to call Bessie. She weighs as much as my toddler. To be honest, I was embarrassed to lug her into the coffee shops to write or work. I had some trainings this week for the mom blogs though, so I really didn't have a choice. And the girls didn't make fun, but they chuckled at my ole dinosaur. 

Jeremie must have felt super sorry for me and it DID happen to be our anniversary AND Mother's Day week. So he showed up yesterday while I was home during Mother's Day Out with an Apple bag. I was taking out the trash and just about hit the floor.  I may or may not have cried. Between working and writing for the moms blog, I'm finding that I really needed a new computer. I am so excited. Now I just have to figure out how to use it! ; ) 

2) Our EIGHT year anniversary was Tuesday and we started our very first official bucket list. And y'all. I CAN'T STOP thinking about it! I go through the day like: "What can we add to our bucket list?" I recommend you start your can read all about ours here.

3) This one. I feel like this week his chatty level has gone through the roof. He talks non stop. LIKE HIS MAMA. Adventures in potty training continue. This week we went to the Chic-Fil-A and after lunch I let him climb in the play area. I was SO PROUD that he made it to the top all by himself and then I heard silence. And listen. If you hear SILENCE from a toddler, something's VERY WRONG. And sure enough, he was pooping. He couldn't figure out how to get down, so in front of all of West Plano, I had to scale the play structure and the only option down was to go down the slide. You can just imagine what that did to his poopy pants. As we marched to the bathroom, he continued to inform everyone loudly: "I POOPIED IN MY PANTS!". It was a proud Mom moment. 

He got the ice cream before the poop incident. Clearly.
The days sure are urgent and hectic and trying, but just LOOK at this little angel. I still just am amazed that God imparted this little life to my care. 

4) The weather here has been amazing lately and we've been taking full advantage! 

We've been frequenting our new favorite park often!
Also for you locals, I've found a new gem in the "kid friendly restaurant" industry! A new area called the Boardwalk has opened! It'll be home to a few new restaurants, only 2 of which are open now. We checked out Chip's Hamburgers last week and it was AMAZING! The atmosphere is incredible and they even have a little play are right next to the patio! The Boardwalk overlooks a pond and fountain and has rocking chairs to relax in! You should definitely check it out! 

5) I have a favorite new mommy tip and it's saving my life! Jeremie built Greyson a sandbox a couple of weeks ago and while I was SUPER EXCITED about a safe backyard activity that keeps G in one spot for more than 5 minutes, I sort did the eye roll about ALL THE SAND that would occupy my home. But listen!!! I read a blog about taking kids to the beach actually, and she recommended baby powder to remove ALL THE SAND from ALL THE PLACES. And y'all. It works like a charm! Literally just sprinkle some regular baby powder and the sand is instantly gone! Mind blown! I realize this sounds like a super unimportant problem, but as we approach summer time and vacations to the beach and trips to the sandbox, I bet you'll be thanking me later!

That's all I got! Hope y'all have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Eight Years and a Bucket List

Our EIGHT YEAR Anniversary was yesterday and it came and went so fast!!! J was swamped at work...and...well, that's right, I was swamped "at work", too. ; ) 

We finally put the little bobcat to bed and sat down to a peaceful dinner together...which was actually in the form of an appetizer platter! (Our fav).  I was trying hard to make the presentation special, but I finally just got too hungry and sat the whole plastic container of olives on my fancy Vietri china platter and said "Dig IN." 

Jeremie and I never do huge anniversary "gifts"; usually we try to travel or do something special. (Last year we went to Three Forks and saw Wicked.)  But I did luck up and find this little bucket at one of my favorite shops/cafe, Lekka

After dinner, we had THE BEST time sitting there and creating our bucket list. It has the cutest little cards inside to write what's on your bucket list, and when you achieved it.  

Have you ever seen the movie RV?! If not, please do.
To be honest, it's been a wild year. Greyson is....well...a toddler, Jeremie has started a business, and to be honest, I think we've been SO caught up in doing LIFE that we've kinda shoved our "fun" big dreams into the back of our minds. It was a like natural stress reliever to just sit there and dream and talk and imagine all the fun adventures we want to do. A few of ours included: 
  • A BIG 10 year anniversary trip....somewhere out of the country....right now, we're thinking Scotland/England, maybe pass through Paris....
  • Go to a football game at each SEC school
  • Buy a farm
  • Go to the Holy Land
  • Attend a MSU National Championship game....any sport...(GET IT TOGETHER MISSISSIPPPI STATE)
I even noticed myself thinking of things to add to our bucket list throughout the day, and it was super fun to get my mind off the mundane! 

I don't know WHY we've never done this before, but I would highly recommend it! This was a super fun anniversary activity.  

Clearly, the concept is don't need a fancy bucket or tags.  BUT, if you WANT one, I did find the bucket I bought on Amazon here

Another funny 'lil story from yesterday. When J came home he really just had that "deer in the headlight" look.  And my first thought was "He doesn't even have a card." Listen. I'm okay with no gift and a weekend celebration. But you better have a card ON the day. He started to explain that he DID have a card, but he didn't like how he worded what he wrote. (Jeremie actually writes in cards...I had to step up my game when we started dating.) So on the way home, he stopped at Walgreens to get another card. On the way in the door, he threw card #1 into the Walgreens trash can. He got in the store and almost immediately, realized that he left his wallet at work. So he walks out.... and DIGS CARD #1 BACK OUT OF THE TRASH CAN. I died laughing. And handed him a Sharpie to mark out his unsatisfactory comments. The final result was a beautiful, well-worded card. And I totally got what he was trying to say, so I really don't know what he was so worried about. It was sweet and hilarious.

And I won't get all mushy, but big thanks to the hubs for keeping his promise to LOVE me through good times and bad. 

And now let's look back at a few wedding photos and reminisce about how young and tiny and energetic and tan we were. Shall we?

This is my favorite picture from our wedding day, hands down. This is 100% me and Jeremie.

We rang our cowbells as we were announced husband and wife!


Monday, May 8, 2017

Monday Must Reads!

Happiest of MONDAYS to YOU! We're doin' the Monday routine grind...laundry, dishes, hosing down the sandbox, etc. We did get out of the house a few minutes and hit a great new park with some friends because it was just too beautiful outside today! It's warm again, and I'm always shocked lately when I wake up, because we've had more of a winter in the last 3 weeks than we've had all WINTER. If that makes sense. Well, it doesn't.  

Anyway, last month I shared some some of my favorite blog posts that I've read, so I thought I'd do that again! I just love that across many miles or maybe without even knowing each other, there are other mamas that are writing EXACTLY what I'm thinking and feeling sometimes! 

I think that the title themselves speak for themselves! Happy reading!

In honor of Mother's Day.... 

This was my contribution this month to Collin County Mom's Blog:

Saturday, May 6, 2017

This Little Boy of Mine

Thursday was Greyson's "Mother's Day Tea" at school. If I had to be honest, I kinda grit my teeth when that told us that the tea began 45 minutes before normal pickup time, which essentially just shaved over an hour off the 5 precious ones that I get to accomplish things without Monster Trucks rolling across my keyboard or the constant request for "fig bars". (We live and die by fig bars people.)

But of course, I made it happen and squeezed in a meeting, some emails, a grocery store run, and about 30 minutes of retail therapy before changing IN THE CAR (they requested we wear a dress). And of course the moment I walked in, Lil G ran into my arms and it was all more than worth it.  I'm pretty sure the fact that he finally got to eat a cookie of the treat table had something to do with it, but regardless, there's no where else I'd rather be. 

I'll be honest though, the tea was 45 minutes of sheer crazy. There were cookies being shoved down, squeezables being squeezed, juice being spilled, and a couple of emergency potty breaks on our part. G was climbing on me like a jungle gym while I tried to tactfully wear my dress. Because of the party, nap time was minimal, so we were pretty much one monkey short of a zoo. 

This kids presented us with the most adorable gifts though. The little laminated picture on the right said "To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world." Y'all. I knew I would love whatever fingerprinted, fuzzy pipe cleaner craft he made, but this one really made me tear up. I know it's a worn out quote, but it's always been one of my favorites. And it came at a perfect time for me in what has seemed like a season of inadequacy. The things that I do for Lil G may seem mundane and unnoticed, but really-taking care of his needs IS his world. So that made Mama's heart full.

Greyson's teachers have been little angels for me this year. They LOVE him like their own and have been so supportive, encouraging and forgiving to clean up MANY MANY messes during potty training. 

G loves to take selfies and say "CHEESE!" I hope he never tires of taking pictures with his mama.

Once I wrangled the little bobcat out and got him pinned down in the carseat, I took a deep breath on the way home. And turned around to see this. G was OUT. It was like he spent his last bit of energy putting on his Mother's Day show for me, and goodness, my heart just about exploded. I'm tearing up as I even type. Even though he's so little and young, I just love seeing his personality develop.  He loves BIG and is so SURE of himself like his Daddy. He is sensitive and chatty like his Mama. He gives life everything he's got. And then he passes out from the sheer exhaustion of it all.

Most days ARE sheer crazy...full of monster truck, and loud requests, and a few tears and lots of correction. To be honest, sometimes I forget what a gift from the Lord he his. I get lost in all the car seat straps and the goldfish crumbs and the multiple trips to the potty.  

But when I looked at that resting little face all I could think about is that I hope he runs after the Lord with as much fervor as he does the rest of life. I pray that his little heart understands early on that God's love is inexhaustible. That he uses all his attributes and talents to serve God and others. I don't know exactly what this will look like and that's part of the excitement in my heart. 

As I go into Mother's Day week, may I remember and celebrate the gift of my child and motherhood! (And maybe even take a little nap when he does!)