Saturday, August 31, 2013

smokin' hot

essie Nail Color - Smokin Hot
 
best nail polish color ever.
purple-y gray and oh so pretty.
its a little treat for less than $8 a bottle.
SCORE!

surrounded by

surround yourself with amazing people!!!
 
 
Our running group met as usual for our long run of the week.
We've been meeting on Saturdays now for nearly five years.
One by one we roll into the parking lot.
Occasionally there are screeching tires as a late one flies in before we take off.
Not naming names here.
Once we figure everybody that's coming is there we start.
The hardest step is the first one.
Making that commitment to run.
In the rain or cold or now in the heat and humidity.
Last week as we're walking through the parking lot
waiting for someone to take that first step into a run
I don't know why but I turned around to look behind me.
I was taken aback at the sheer number of our group.
We've grown over the years.
Somebody brings a friend.
A new person from our boot camp group is invited to join the run.
We've definitely multiplied.
It started as maybe ten people.
I'm thinking we've tripled by now.
People fall in and out based on injuries
 and kids or work schedules
but there's always somebody willing to run.
All people and paces welcome.
Nobody is made fun of for how fast or slow they run.
I promise we leave no person behind.
Except that one time Laura...that'll never happen again. :)
These people -
men and women
from all walks of life
with all kinds of different personalities
have become a second family to me.
And that makes me very happy indeed.

Some of my running peeps are running
 a half marathon tomorrow in Portland.
Here's a little running humor for them...


#sadrunnertruth
via


#sadrunnertruth
via
#sadrunnertruth
via

and for non-runners...
Hahahaha
via


I'm glad the weather in Portland will be a lot cooler than in Texas.
It's going to be a great race.
Just remember two things...

;)
via


and

one foot in front of the other,
keep falling forward.

Good luck y'all!

Safe travels home :)


 

Friday, August 30, 2013

its game on

I know I just said I need to have a garage sale.
Hear me out.
We have this little Pottery Barn Kids table
that the boys have used since they were toddlers.
As they grew up
and dinged it up
I painted it.



Then they started playing chess
so I added a checkerboard to the top.



Now that they're bigger and using the table less
I'm thinking of getting a bigger table
that we can use as a family for games and puzzles.
Yesterday I saw this online.
Me thinks I need this in my life
 
 
 
via world market

The little seats swing in and out.
What do you think?
I think it would be perfect.
Now just to convince the hubs that we need another piece of furniture.
Stay tuned.
 


look what finally arrived

So you know I ordered this coffee table in April from Wisteria...
 
 
 
Well after four months on back order
{and me second guessing it during that time}
it finally arrived.
It cost an extra $150 for delivery.
The guy set it down in my entry way and ran.
It is extremely heavy and he didn't want to fool with it anymore.
After staring at the box for an hour
I decided I couldn't wait til hubs came home from work.
I am not one to be deterred when it comes to decorating.
I threw some towels under the box and pushed it through the house.
Then I became a mad woman moving rugs and sofas.
 
 

I flipped the PB sectional sofa
(the corner piece is in storage)
with the Charleston sleeper sofa...


 
still not right...
 
then I moved the sectional back to its original spot,
moved the leather sofa from hubs' bachelor days in...


 
and moved the Charleston sleeper sofa into my husband's office...
 
 
I thought my mother-in-law was coming to stay with us for a few days
and since she can't climb stairs right now I thought this option
would give her a feeling of privacy.
 
With the sofas moved around I put the rugs back down and
moved the heavy new coffee table in...
{note that all the coral and hip chocolate floral is on its way out}
 
 


I like the size of this...its huge.
Its already covered in Legos.
 

 


All this moving and cleaning in the process took all day.
It was time to get the kids from school.
I came home and decided that I hated it.
My husband got home late that night and said he liked it.
The next morning we moved it all back.
His final words to me before he left were to please
 not to spend my whole day
decorating and moving stuff
that we then have to undo and redo.
Me thinks I have too many sofas.
I'm ready to clean house and have a garage sale.
Anybody in?
 




Thursday, August 29, 2013

love you forever

My husband keeps saying that this has been the worst summer he can remember.
It started out the day before school got out when my dad fell.
You might remember that he broke his leg.
When he went in for surgery they found
that he'd had a heart attack.
His leg surgery was postponed until they figured out his heart.
After a long medical roller coaster
he unfortunately lost his leg.
Good news though is that once his wound
from the amputation heals he will
{God willing}
get fitted for a prosthetic leg and hopefully
become mobile again.
 
I don't think that I've mentioned here
that my mother-in-law also fell this summer...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

what i did on the first day of school

I went with the hubs to look for a new desk for him.
Of course I got distracted.
Herewith my favorite things...
 
navy accents
 

 
more navy love and blue and white porcelain...
 


 
maybe I'll do something like this for our dining room tabletop...

 
 
loving this oversized sea fan...
 

 
 
 
sunburst mirror
and
check out the sunburst on the console table...

 
love the topiaries in the basket
simple but beautiful.

 
Still figuring out the desk situation.
Stay tuned for pics...


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

end of an era

How did this happen?
All my boys are going to school today. 
Together.
 My youngest started kindergarten.
He was so proud to be going to school with his brothers.
 
 
There was no looking back...
 
 
I think it is going to be a great year.
For them and hopefully for me.
Surprisingly I did not shed a tear.
I know that they're where they need to be.
It will be good for them
and for me too.
I'll admit I'm still in my pajamas today
trying to figure out what to do first.
Discombobulated would be a good word to use.
Happy too :)
Whatever you do today make it good!



 

 


ask yourself

?

Friday, August 23, 2013

inspired by

I'm still slowly working on putting the kitchen back together.
My dining room is full of knick knacks and cookbooks.
I told myself that I can't put anything back
that hasn't been used in six months.
Apparently I have a collection of clear vases
that I didn't even know I collected.
Ha!
I kept a couple to put roses from the backyard in
and had set the rest aside to take to Goodwill.
Then I saw this post on Mary Ann's blog about antique bottles.
I have a space on top of the little glass cabinet
above the bar area in our kitchen that currently
houses some driftwood spheres
and colored glass like fishing floats...
my plan is to declutter the bookshelves in the family room
and move some of this stuff to those shelves
and put more of the colored glass up here...
 
 
 
I got to thinking.
I remembered this pin that has been
on my projects board for a long time...
re-use old clear vases
 
and it got me to thinking.
 
Before I knew it I had rounded up all my spare craft paint
 
 
{loving the new back splash!!!!!}
{and you can see the veining in the London Gray Caesarstone....LOVES}
 
Back to the paint...
I mixed the blues and a dash of black

 
and voila!

 
NOTE: It looks gray here but it dried to more of a navy.
I thought I'd just toss this one but its actually quite pretty now.
 
Let me be honest here.
I didn't follow the tutorial on the pin.
She used enamel paint and a surface conditioner.
Uh yeah.
Hello, my name is Nancy and I'm impatient.
I roll with what I have on hand.
I didn't run out to Michael's to get new paint or a surface conditioner.
I'm type A about cleaning.
Crafting?
Not so much.
I just dumped all the paints in a plastic cup,
swirled and dumped.
Then I just twirled the vase around until the paint coated the whole inside.
Easy peasy lemon breezy.
 
And in case you wanted to see more back splash...
here it is with the new faucet.

 


I hung the old curtains up just to get them out of the dining room.
I'm definitely going with a roman shade.
Gotta get these boys in school so I can make a move on that.
Speaking of the boys...
it would appear that somebody got their hands on the iPhone
and took random shots around the house.
Here's one I found...


 
And you may notice the different color on that little wall above to the right.
Remain calm.
{I'm telling myself that.}
We're not done.
We're just in negotiations about the paint color.
The painters DID paint it White Dove.
And then my husband came home that day
and told them to paint it the color of the family room.
We went back and forth
and just to keep the peace
{since I know we're not done with painting the island}
{and maybe the cabinets...but don't mention that to him}
I let it stay.
Even the painters were shaking their heads at us.
Marriage.
I want to keep mine.
Just keep your eyes focused on the new Hicks pendants.
Don't you just love them?


Thursday, August 22, 2013

life is so funny

I was in the middle of my morning blog crawl
which has really turned into a blog/pinterest crawl
while I drink my last cup of coffee...
my guilty pleasure of the day.
I saw this pin and it spoke to me
 
 
The difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do.
via skinny-healthyme.tumblr.com
 
In trying to credit the link
I stumbled on this blog post
on a new to me blog called
 
 
and it spoke to my heart
especially in light of my recent post.
Kind of explains the juxtaposition
of how my life is so blessed and full
and yet I feel like I have nothing to offer
after all these years of staying home.
Not having a pity party.
Just thinking it through
and keeping it real.
If you have time you may want to read it too.
I think my morning blog crawl just got one blog longer.

 
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

best in a long time

I'm working on a before and after post for our kitchen reno.
I really am but I have three little constant interruptions.
Ages 5 through 8.
And that's ok. It can wait.
I suspect it won't be finished until next week.
It will really be a "pending" post
since there's more to finish
like painting the island.
Before I can do that though
I want to finalize the fabric for the window covering.
So I have been looking at fabric online
just to make sure there isn't a fabric I like more.
I know I'll find the perfect one.
Right after I buy some fabric
and have a roman shade made.
Story of my {decorating} life.
I just want to avoid a domino decision.
 And my husband's wrath.
{Just kidding...he's the sweetest really}
Remember how he cracked the code last week?
He sat me down one evening
{the one where the electricians were here until 9:30 PM}
and he said

{We need to talk.}

Now you know that is never good.

{Uh oh, what'd I do now?}

He goes:
 
{I feel like we do one project,
move on to the next,
and then another,
and then we circle back
and redo what has already been done.}
 
You may be wondering what I was thinking when he said this.
Now this may sound bad but here goes.
I was thinking this...
 
{It took you eleven years to figure this out?}
 
{OK} I said.
I may or may not have had
fingers crossed behind my back
when I said it.
Kidding.
 
{But I have to do the window.
And then that will impact the family room.
Remember we were going to do that too?
Change the hip chocolate floral to navy and green?
It won't be bad I promise.
Just new curtains.
And maybe a few pillows.
Don't worry.
We have a plan.}

I say we because
I hired someone to double check me.
Sweet and patient Mary Ann is on board
to help me focus
and make a decision :)
More on that in the "pending" post.
 
In the meantime while I was looking at fabrics
I came across this lovely
 
 
 
Beautiful right?
 
Love the mix of pillows.

Makes me want to redo our bedroom
if I'm being honest.
We won't mention that to the hubs though.
 
Now get a load of the before...
 
 
I know!
Talk amongst yourselves.
 
Is that not the best
before and after
you've seen in a long time?
 
Click here to read about this update
and to see her source list.
I'm off to add  Life on Virginia Street to my blog roll.


counting the days

until school starts.
I have joked for the past couple of years
that the day our youngest starts kindergarten
I was going to have a wine and cheese reception
at my house
at 8am.
But honestly now that its here its very bittersweet.
I know.
Get over it right?
I'm hoping for big things this year.
In addition to figuring out what I want to become
in this second stage of life
I sure hope my youngest finally starts sleeping in his own bed.
He usually comes in between 11pm and 1am.
Every night.
Smack dab during the best sleep of the night for me.
Bribery only works for a short time.
Getting mad doesn't work.
You name it, I've tried it.
I'm having back issues lately because of it.
I sleep like a contortionist
in the little space left over after he wedges himself
in between my husband and I.
But I keep telling myself this:
That I'm gonna miss this.
I didn't used to think that.
I wished away the days when they were little
because I was so dang exhausted.
"I can't wait til __________"
fill in the blank with
"they're walking"
"they're out of diapers"
"they're able to feed themselves"
and so forth and so on.
I realize now that those WERE the easy days.
And honestly I miss those days.
And I want them back.
Or so I think my husband says.
And by the way no we are not having another one.
I've been told by the powers that be.
The factory is closed.
Good news is that my friends are still having them.
I got to hold my friend's cutie patootie baby yesterday.
Six months old and just getting the little rolls that are so yummy.
Swoon!
 
In the meantime I'm buying backpacks
and pinning ideas for school lunches.
I found these two cute ideas if you have littles...
 
First Day of School printables
 
little signs they hold for first day of school pictures.
Good for people like me who take pics of their kids
swearing they'll remember what occasion it is.
Then eight years later you can't figure out even which child it is.
Mother of the year here, right?
 
Also this little questionnaire...
 
Back to School Questionnaire- I'm making a scrapbook starting from kindergarten and ending in 12th grade. These questions will be answered the first day of each school year
 
 
As my dad says every day is a great day!
Hope yours is happy :)
 


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

do, be, good

This post has taken about a month to write.
It originally started when I saw this...

"I didn't always know what I wanted to do, but I knew the kind of woman I wanted to be. -Diane Von Furstenberg
 
via Emily McCarthy.com

this pretty much sums me up.
I still don't know what I want to "do"
but I know the kind of person I want to "be".
In a word I just want to be good.

I became a chemist not because I loved chemistry.
When I was in school they pushed my class to go into math and science.
I started college as an engineering major.
My plan was to become a pilot.
We all know how that turned out.
Then I took a chemistry class and admired my teacher so much that I switched majors.
Weird right?
I worked three jobs at one point to pay my own way.
Tuition, car insurance, car payment, rent, food.
The whole kit and caboodle.
I appreciate that fact now.
When I was in school struggling to make ends meet
{and keep my grades up}
I admit I wasn't so appreciative.
{best college job by the way was at a hotel as night desk clerk....
best grades ever because I could study when I wasn't helping someone}
But looking back on that time I have nothing to be but proud of myself.
That I pushed through when all I really wanted to do was give up.
But there was no choice really.
Everybody has to work right?

I graduated from a great school and started working immediately.
I was thankful to have a job.
One job.
Not a bunch of them like I did paying my way through college.
I worked as a chemist in industry for over a decade.
I'd always planned to continue working outside the home.
Then I had babies.
Two preemies to be exact.
That'll change life in an instant.

OK., so I took a break there for the night.
When I went back to writing I had planned to figure out where I was going.
Then I read this post on one of my favorite blogs...the silver pen.

You gotta click through and read it...
its a guest post of sorts called
"8 reasons to keep working after you have kids."

Interesting title.
I clicked through to read it.
I left a comment afterwards.
A short one.
Here's the long version I erased...

"I always thought I'd be a "working" mother.
Premature twin babies will change your priorities in an instant.
I have never worked harder in my whole life.
I don't get paid a dime.
Fine by me.
Lately I've read a lot of articles
about how great it is to be a "working mother"
versus
being a mother whose work is inside the home without pay.
Last one I can remember was in a recent More magazine.
Why is there a need to debate this?
Who cares really?
To each their own.
Each is terrific and each sucks in its own way
yet has its downsides too. 
Does one have to be portrayed as being "better"
or can we as women just say
"good for you"
for the choice you've made.
Life is all about choices right?
I'm solid in being knowing that I made the right one for ME
to stay at home while my kids are little. 
It was the best thing for our family.
I'm not saying its the best choice for all families.
Just mine.
You make your choice.
I'll make mine.
Deal?

Why do I stay at home?
Have a minute?
I know on my deathbed that I won't be lamenting the loss of a paycheck.
Heck, childcare isn't cheap...sometimes it can be a wash.
Yes I want to see my kids as much as I can
and be there for them when they need me.
What mom doesn't want that?
In the beginning there were monitors and alarms that would go off
and oxygen lines that they would pull out.
Keeping them on a schedule for them and for us.
In the beginning it was all about survival.
Now staying at home means
I'm there when they're throwing their tantrums etc.
and doing crazy things
 that might drive another person
who didn't give birth to them
to their breaking point.
I have trust issues.
{my friends would say I watch too much "nancy grace"}
That's just me.
I'm just doing the best I can.
I bet everybody else is too.

Most of my friends work outside the home
(both men and women so there goes #6 on that list)
At least one has admitted
that they feel like it makes them a better parent
to go to work every day outside the home.
Am I a better mom
than one who leaves their home for work
because
I stay at home with my kids?
NO WAY!
You know why?
There is no "better" way to do it.
I don't care what any dang study says.
"Better" doesn't exist.
Parenthood is hard.
PERIOD!
Working.
Stay at home.
I'm just trying to do my best.
I'm sure you are too."

told you it was the long version.

I'm teaching one of my guys how to tie his shoes.
You know there is more than one way to tie shoes.
Many ways in fact.
When my "rabbit ears" method didn't work for him
I you-tubed it to find a video of a different way.
Trust me there more ways than you can imagine.
Same thing with parenthood.
More ways than one to raise a kid.
You do what works for you.
I'll be doing my thing over here.
Let's meet up in 20 years to see how it all turns out.
Compare notes if you will.
If they all have jobs and are not in jail
we'll raise a glass and have a toast.
Deal?

Until then can we please just get to the point
where we,
especially women,
stop judging each other's choices?
Especially when it comes to parenthood.

And can I just say this:
Nobody questions a man going to work if he has kids.
Nobody judges the man.
Let me just throw that bone out there.
Let somebody find the wherewithal to write an article about that.
Or better yet do a study on it.
Now that's some research I'd LOVE to read.

Let me wrap this up with a pretty little bow
and bring it back to my original idea.
My point was this...
I'm 42.
My kids will all be in school full time this fall.
I don't want to go back into chemistry.
I want to reinvent myself.
I don't know exactly what I am going to do.
Aside from trust issues I also am indecisive.
You probably already know that by now.
I don't know what I want to do.
I just want to do good and be good at whatever I do.
In the meantime I'm going to lean into my discomfort
and try to figure out what to become.
And I hope its good.








Monday, August 19, 2013

little glimmers

You may remember that last year one of our guys did his first triathlon.
My youngest son threw a fit so I gave him the camera to play with and
Yesterday both of the twins took part in the same triathlon.
 
I gave Zb my new iPhone to keep him busy let him commemorate the occasion.
 
Without further adieu here is Zb's take on the tri...
 
my two brothers are in line for the swim part...
 
 
I ate the big bag of goldfish mom brought to keep me busy.
I thought they said there'd be doughnuts here.
What do you mean I have to wait?
Huh.
Can I take pictures then?
Promise I wont buy any games on your phone.
Pictures only.
I promise. 
Can you guess what this is?
 

 
A close up of the mesh bottom of the sun chairs.
Bet you've never seen that before.
I'm always thinking outside the box you know.
 
Yep, they're still in line.
When's this thing supposed to be over?
I've got trouble to find stuff to do.

 
Wow.

 
I love my swim trunks.
Look at the cool skulls.
Mom didn't see those when she bought these I bet.
 
I love my knees.
Yep, I am the bees knees.

 
Think I'll take twenty pictures of it.

 
And my lime green crocs...

 
Yep, need twenty or so pictures of them too.
 
Hey!
Guess what I spy?

 
Doughnuts!
What?
I cant have one now?
What do you mean I have to wait til this tri is over?
WHHHAAAATTTTTTT??????????
Ok, fine.
Just for that I'm taking more knee and shoe pictures.



Look at how talented I am.
I can hold the iphone precariously with one hand and still take a picture!

 
Whoa!
I just took an unflattering picture of my mom.
Bet she won't put it on her blog.

{picture removed by co-author}
 
Here are my brothers still waiting...


 
Then FINALLY!
 
We have splashdown.
 

 
and then another...


 
They're both in the water.
Let the games begin...
 
Here are both the brothers passing in the pool.
 
 
 
Pool part done...

 
Time to bike!
 

 
Go Dg go!




 
Ok. Somebody explain to me again why I cant ride my bike too?
MOM!
Why didn't you bring my bike?
What do you mean I have to wait a year to do this?
In that case take the camera.
I quit.
 
 
Hey Mom.
I think you're taking video now instead of pictures.
 

 
You don't believe me do you?

 
Well I hear it in this video at the end.
You go "OH!?!?!"
That's when you realize you've been taking video not pictures.
Oh well.
Obviously I need to find a you tube tutorial about how to work an iphone.
Back to the tri...
 
The best part of the tri happened at the end.
Twin A started before Twin B
and remained ahead most of the race.
On the run portion though Twin B caught up and ran past A.
We're watching and cheering.
B is a natural runner.
He finds his stride and gives it his all.
On the final lap we lose sight of B behind the big blow up finish line.
We see A taking the last corner but where is B?
Did he just quit?
Is he overheated?
What in the world?
Then we see it.
 
 
He was waiting on his brother


 
so that they could cross the finish line together.


 
I know.
Every parent at the finish line turned to look at us.
We were all choked up.
The other parents were like "he waited on his brother?"
And that's when the little glimmer of hope radiated in my heart.
The one that says you have been doing something right.
And everything on this rocky road that is parenthood is going to be ok.

 
 
Now let's go find those doughnuts!
 
 
 
 


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