Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Few of My Favorite Things on Friday

A Few of My Favorite Things

This has been a week of errands, repairs, and finally getting around to exercising more regularly now that the kids are back in school.  I miss them very much, and so does Camden--he cried on Wednesday when they left.  I think he figured out that they are going to leave him for 6 hours a day on weekdays from now on. :(  But he has a busy schedule too, starting next week with story time and music class.

SO, my first favorite thing this week is MoJo Cycles in downtown Matthews.  Have you ever been there?  I was so sad to find a nail in my jogging stroller's tire (Fairhaven neighbors can relate) a few weeks ago.  Tire was completely flat, and it didn't look it was going to be possible to fix the hole.  So, I went to MoJo, expecting to order a tire, or have to leave the stroller for them to repair it.  Walked into the service department and the guy working on a bike dropped what he was doing, took off my tire (kinda scary how easily it just popped off), tested it to see if all it needed was a new tube (that was all it needed), repaired the tube, and filled all three tires on the stroller.  I was so thankful and mentioned how I thought I may have to leave it.  He said, "Well, you could have left it, but you look like you might need this stroller soon." Really?  Did I look like I was jonesing for a run that badly?  Or was it the cute little one year old checking out everything in the shop that made him think I needed to strap him in to keep him out of trouble?  Anyway, he was so nice and thoughtful and I really appreciated his quick customer service.  If you are in the market for a bike, or need a repair, this is your place.  No more driving all the way to REI for us!

My second favorite thing is...THESE PIGGIES!!!  So often I think about things I will miss when my little guys get big, and this is definitely one of them.  One of my most important rules at the dinner table is that knees and pigs are not invited.  But when they're this darn cute?  I just can't say no.

And on a similar note, this "Bean Box," is a fav this week.  Inspired by my sister's friend, Tamara, I made this box for Camden to experiment!  We played for 30 minutes straight with this thing.  And if you have a toddler, you know that 30 minutes of playing with ONE toy is quite a feat for this age.  There are endless possibilities of things to do with a container and some beans.  (Full blog post on "The Bean Box" to follow next week).

And finally, I am nervously stepping out of my comfort zone with this one, because I have never done a fashion post before.  But this deal is just too good not to share.  Two words: Golden Tote.  The Pleated Poppy (one of my favorite blogs) posted about her experience with Golden Tote and I have been eyeing the website for a while.  I finally got up the nerve to just do it!  $149, two "chosen" items and four "surprises" later, and I now have six new items in my closet.  This was such a great experience, and so totally worth it, that I know I will do it again.  I may have paid $149, but the items I received add up to  a $600 value.  So fun!  I will share three with you.  The first two are my "picks" and the third is one of my surprises.

This is the Merrick Summer Swing Dress in paisley.   
with a skinny belt and wedges...

with a belt and black booties
unbelted with a jean jacket and wedges
*dress is VERY flowy

This is the Merrick for Golden Tote Lace Top.  Unfortunately it is out of stock!

I'm wearing it with a necklace made by The Pleated Poppy.  Her shop is closed now, but fingers crossed she'll open it soon!  

This dress is Priddy by Puella.  It is so soft and comfy and it has pockets!

Happy Friday!  

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Love your Teachers

Love your Teachers 

I remember laughing out loud when my orthodontist told me I needed to brush my teeth after lunch.  Was he kidding?  I was lucky if I had time to use the bathroom.  And making phone calls to set up doctor's appointments, or check on my child at daycare?  Forget it.  I was running a classroom, and my "kids" needed me every moment we were together during the school day.  And I loved those kids, like they were my own.  

And don't get me started about the pay.  Recently, after laughing about Camden's obsession with trash, we decided to google what garbage collectors make.  And I was surprised (but not really) to find out that starting salary for a person collecting trash is more than I made my first year as a teacher.

So, most of us agree we can gripe and complain about teacher pay, but it's not likely to change in the very near future.  In the meantime, we can honor our teachers in every way possible.

One of my good friends, a nurse and teacher herself, does a fantastic job of honoring her kids' teachers. She prepared these cute little pails for the first day of school.

Leah inspired me to do the same.

I laminated the tag so she can use it as a bookmark.

May have borrowed the "simply" idea from a very creative teacher. :)  Thanks, Mrs. Camp,

So, what will you do to honor the one who loves your child as her own for six hours a day?  The one who helps your son or daughter serve him/herself mashed potatoes in the lunch line, who cares for his/her skinned knees, and who stays at school most nights until 5:00 or later preparing lessons that will be engaging and fun?  Love your teachers.  

Monday, August 25, 2014

Summer Organizing

Lately I have been going with the decorating and organizing idea that less is more.  In my effort to clean out and organize this summer, I have purged and donated, relocated and tossed, and have found myself asking, "How did I get here?"  The only answer I can come up with is that I am too busy to stay organized, but that just doesn't make sense.  Because if I can get organized (and stay that way), it will take a lot less time for me to get things done because I will not be spending time digging in closets and drawers, looking for things!!!

Hence, my quick and easy organizing projects.  I will share three with you.  And you'll have to excuse the iphone pics.  Our camera broke at the beach and we are in the process of fixing it. ;(

Organizing Project Number 1: Cleaning out the junk drawer.

I was inspired by Cassie at Hi Sugarplum, to Tame the Junk Drawer.  

Over the summer, things had gotten shoved in here, in no particular order.  School papers mingled with sunglasses, the kids' crazy scissors were lost in a jumble of pens and pencils.  It was virtually impossible to find ANYTHING.  And this is my go-to drawer when I need to find most things.  Like a ponytail holder to put my hair up when I am trying to make dinner, or a paperclip to tidy a pile of papers, or that label maker when I want to...organize!

When I was browsing through my favorite blogs, I stumbled upon Hi Sugarplum, and I have really enjoyed checking in on her blog from time to time.  I love her idea of lining the bottom of the drawer with pretty paper.  She used wrapping paper and secured it with washi tape.  I didn't have any wrapping paper I wanted to use, so I bought this contact paper from the dollar bins at Target.  It was actually $3, but I still have a lot left over for other fun projects (like the one below), so I'd say it was a bargain. 

So, anyway, I used the contact paper to cover the bottom of the drawer...

I found these baskets at Target, and used a few others I already had in my crazy overstuffed drawer.

And now look!

From left to right: stapler, tape, pens, push pins, hole punch, markers, lotion, post-its, chapstick, ponytail holders, and rubber bands (out of frame), paper clips,  bandaids and Polysporin, mints, sunglasses, label maker, and ball pump.

I have to apologize again for the terrible pictures.  I miss my camera!  But you can see, everything I need right at my fingertips.

Found and relocated...

One picture of Olaf (drawn by Carson), one box of mints, and three "mulchmen."  

Olaf is in my "projects" file waiting to be turned into a bookmark.  The mints, a lovely gift from my sis, went in my purse, and the mulchmen, created by Carson and my dad, went in Carson's room, at the ready for Boompa's next visit.

Organizing Project Number 2: Cleaning out the Pantry


Organizing Project Number 3: Cleaning under my bed

I will share both next week!