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5 Things Friday {6.23.17}

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Have I mentioned a time or twelve that I love summer? Because I really really love summer. I joked on Instagram earlier that most of my images will consist of the same scene- me sitting at the pool with a book while my kids swim. We had a very laid back relaxing week, which is exactly what summer should be in my opinion. 

1. My sister brought my adorable nephew over to swim and we had a blast. Well, most of us had a blast. Mason was less than pleased that he had to hang out around the steps to play because my nephew cannot swim yet and he’s over the weight limit for his puddle jumper. Ha! But it was a good time and I got to hang out with my sister and talk to an actual adult!

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2. There wasn’t anything specific that Matt wanted to do for Fathers Day this year. He didn’t want to go anywhere and he didn’t want any gifts. He really just wanted a relaxing day. So that’s what we did. We let him sleep in, then we spent hours at the pool, then lounged in the hot tub before Matt grilled delicious pork chops for dinner. Then we did more nighttime hot tub lounging with wine and binge watched Beachfront Bargain Hunt. Our dream is to one day live on the beach so this show is our jam. It was a great day.

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3. Tyler just started his very last month of Accutane! He had bloodwork done earlier in the week and saw his dermatologist a couple of days later. She is so pleased with his progress and he probably will not need to do another 6 month course. He is so ready to be done with this journey. He has a lot of scarring on his back so we’ll go back in 6 months to talk about how/when/if to do anything about it. I happened to catch him mid-yawn at the dermatologist office. Ha! He had a friend sleep over the night before and they played video games until 5am, then he had to leave for morning football at 7am so he got no sleep at all before his appointment. Then he had to go back for afternoon football practice. He was TIRED and CRANKY when he got home. Teenagers. 

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4. I don’t know why I make rules around here. I have a strict no dogs on the furniture policy and that includes the brand new outdoor furniture. Nobody listens. I find dogs on the furniture all the time now. Blatant disrespect. But they’re so cute, how do you say no and shoo them back to the floor? I just can’t do it. 

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5. I made the best 7 layer taco salad for dinner the other night. I’d been craving taco salad and I finally made one. It was delicious and I’ll be sharing the recipe soon because it is too good not to be shared. The kids, who normally grumble about why can’t I just make tacos without the salad part, ate every single bite! 

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We had a busy, fun week. I can’t believe we’re already done with week 2 of summer break. NOOOOOO! Slow down time, slow down! 

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5 Things Friday {6.16.17}

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The first official week of Summer Break is coming to a close and what a week we’ve had. I love summer. I love it so hard. The kids have slept in until past 10 nearly every single day. My house has been full of laughter and noise. All I smell is sunscreen and chlorine. It’s perfection. 

1. Last weekend was super busy at our house. We had some stuff that needed to get done before we got down to the business of enjoying summer. Tyler had football at 8am. Then I had to take him to his sports physical at 11:30. His school participates in the free sports physicals every year and luckily it’s at the same place where Tyler sees the sports medicine doctor so it works out nicely. After his physical we spent hours working in the back yard getting ready for the landscaping to start. Matt and I made a quick trip to Sam’s Club then took the kids to the pool for a couple of hours before making pizzas and watching movies. Maia and Zoey both had friends sleep over and there wasn’t a whole lot of sleeping happening. But it was fun!

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2. Tyler helped out his varsity basketball coach with a camp for middle school and JV players this week. The coach asked a few of the varsity players to help out to earn service hours. It worked out nicely because he had football from 8-10 and then the basketball camp was from 10-3. He came home exhausted every day. He told me that they’re like puppies- full of endless energy and always yapping. Ha! 

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3. The 3 youngest had dentist appointments this week. Cleanings and no cavities all around! Poor Maia goes for her orthodontist consult at the end of the month. Her teeth are pretty crooked and her bite is a little bit off so it’s time to get it fixed. She’s thrilled. 

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4. My dad came down this week to help us with a project on the back deck. We just replaced the hot tub cover and a storm already knocked a branch into it, ripping a small hole in the vinyl cover. So my dad built a lattice cover for the top of the gazebo. It looks fantastic and it only cost us $60 compared to the $1200 quote we got from a local handyman to add a roof. We had a bad storm the day after dad finished and not one branch hit the hot tub! 

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5. I’m really enjoying this summer. We go to the pool pretty much every single day. All my kids can swim without assistance and passed the neighborhood swim test so I don’t have to be in the water with them all the time. It’s opened up a whole new world for me. I can read. I can lounge. I can watch them play. It’s awesome. Big kids rock. 

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Week 1 of summer is in the books. Bring on week 2!

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5 Things Friday {6.9.17}

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Guess what? Our summer break started a day earlier than expected. We let the little kids skip the last day of school (with their teachers’ permission) and they were so excited to have no alarm clocks this morning! So was their mother, I won’t lie. We packed a lot into our last week of the school year though.

1. We spent a lot of time at the pool this week both Saturday and Sunday and then during the week in the evenings after school. These kids are water babies and they are never happier than when they are in the water. Our neighborhood HOA made the decision this year to not employ lifeguards from our pool management company. Truthfully, in the 12 summers we have lived here the lifeguards have been more of a pain than a help. So this year we are saving the money and putting it towards some upgrades to the pool area. So that means less time for me to sit and read when I’m the only parent supervising my kids but that’s ok. I put Matt in charge on the weekends and get my reading done. 

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2. I struggled to figure out what to do for the end of year teachers gifts for the little kids teachers. This is our last year at the elementary school where we have kids attending for the last 11 years. It’s bittersweet even though I’m excited for our little kids to attend school with our big kids. I wanted to do something really nice for our beloved teachers this year. Mason’s teacher is amazing, she is seriously just the best. He’s had her for 2 years and I think she’s the best teacher any of my kids have ever had. We’re going out for tacos and margaritas now that she’s no longer his teacher. And Zoey’s Kindergarten teacher has been absolutely a God send for us. So I decided to make them Favorite Things gift bags. At the beginning of the year the teachers fill out a Favorite Things survey so I used those to create personalized gift bags full of their most favorite things. I added a personal thank you card and I hope they know how much they are appreciated. 

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3. Tyler started physical therapy this week for the Chondromalacia in his left knee. The PT working with him is amazing. He works mainly with football players and he talked to Tyler just like his football coaches do so Tyler immediately liked him. Ha! Boys. Tyler has a lot of work ahead of him to rehab his knee but the PT feels like he’ll make a full recovery and be ready in time for camp at the end of the summer so we feel fortunate. Tyler’s laughing because the PT was telling him that he needs to strengthen his glutes in order to support his max squat of 425 and Tyler’s first thought was “my mom is going to tell all of Facebook that my butt is weak”. Yep. I sure did. Ha!

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4. My annual first and last day collages of the kids. I can’t believe how much older they look now. First day is on the left and last day is on the right. They’ve grown so much and look so much older- especially Maia and Mason. He lost all of his little boy appearance, he looks totally grown up now. I hate it. 

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5. Zoey Jayne graduated from Kindergarten yesterday. We are 5 for 5 in Kindergarten graduations and this was our very last time experiencing the adorable little ceremony. It’s definitely bittersweet but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I love love love having big kids. They are fun and we get to do cool stuff now that they are older. Zoey’s ceremony was so cute. They sang songs and Zoey got really into it. Show choir might be in her future. Ha! We got to love on her teacher and tell her thank you. And I made sure to get lots of pictures of Zoey and her friends since she probably won’t see them much anymore. She’s in the middle of the back row at the top in these pictures. She’s a ham!

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It was a busy week and I’m so glad that we are now on summer break! Woo HOO! Bring on the pool days and margaritas. I’m ready and I’ve earned it. 

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Life Lately {May 2017}

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I missed last week’s Five Things Friday because I was so busy getting ready for our Memorial Day picnic so I figured the easiest thing to do was just make one big recap post. We had a lot going on in the last week or so!

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Tyler had his last exam on Monday of last week and he was DONE with his 10th grade year. He’s had a great year and has really thrived in the charter school system. I’ll have a whole post soon about our first year in charter school. 

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Zoey decided at the last minute last weekend that she wanted a hair cut so I chopped off about 6″ of hair. She had a lot of dead ends and tangles so it was definitely time for a cut. I’ll miss being able to braid her hair but she’s happy so that’s what matters. I don’t like that she looks older all of a sudden. No. 

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We finally finished our back deck redo. We assembled our conversation set and our dining set and our new hot tub cover finally arrived. It’s made such a difference on our back deck. Everyone wants to be out there now! I’ll share more pictures soon. I added some potted plants and hanging baskets and I’ve kept them alive for a whole week so I’m feeling pretty confident now. Ha!

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Tyler had a bunch of appointments this last week. First up was the dermatologist. He’s starting month 5 on Accutane and seeing results finally. He’s a big guy and guys with that much muscle mass take longer to respond to the medication apparently. He has another month left (6 months total) and we’re hopeful that he’ll be pleased with the end result. Then he had to see the sports medicine doctor about his knee. Long story short- he took a bad helmet hit to his kneecap last season and pretty much limped his way through the rest of the season. It’s been really bothering him lately and the trainer finally told him to go see the sports med doc. We saw the same doctor that Tyler saw for his concussion and he’s fantastic. Tyler has Chondromalacia- which basically means his kneecap slides out of place when he bends his leg in any way. The cartilage under his kneecap is damaged and his MCL is loose from overcompensating for his kneecap. So he starts rehab therapy next week and we’re hopeful he’ll have a full recovery. He’s worried about being 100% for the season but with a knee sleeve and kinesio tape he should be able to play.

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My parents came down to celebrate Memorial Day with us and my sister and her family came to join us. It was such a fun day. We had our picnic on Saturday because we had plans to attend our neighborhood cookout on Monday. The kids had a great time in the hot tub and the adults got to enjoy the deck and all the good food. 

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We had a really laid back Sunday. We spent a few hours at the pool then chilled in the hot tub and finally grilled dinner out on the deck. It was perfect. We were outside for pretty much the entire day and everyone was happy. It really made me excited for summer vacation!

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Our neighborhood hosted the annual Memorial Day picnic at the pool on Monday and it was amazing as always. It was so nice to see friends from the neighborhood that we hadn’t seen since last summer. In our neighborhood most of the kids attend different charter schools or are homeschooled so we don’t always see them during the school year. My kids have school friends and neighborhood friends, it’s weird but it works. I have pictures of most of these kids going back 10+ years so it’s been fun to watch them grow up together. The neighborhood did a pot luck so there was tons of food and drinks, great music, and lots of laughter. I love our ‘hood. We made a definite decision recently that we don’t want to move. We really love our neighborhood and our neighbors. We just can’t see leaving here. Anyway- Memorial Day was a blast and we spent more than 6 hours at the pool partying with friends. It was a rough re-entry into the real world on Tuesday morning, let me tell you. It was ugly. But we’re almost at the finish line. This Friday is Maia’s last day and next Friday is the little kids last day. Bring on Summer!

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2017 Monthly Goals: June

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I cannot believe how much I accomplished in May, y’all! I think it helped a lot that we hosted the annual Memorial Day picnic at our house on Saturday so I had to get my to do list finished! I work best with deadlines. I just don’t like them. Ha!

May Goals:

1. Finish the front yard landscaping. ALMOST DONE. We have everything done except planting new bushes. We pulled out all the old half-dead bushes and plants. We laid new pine straw. I touched up all the paint on the front of the porch and I have new potted plants out there. It looks amazing. I’m still debating what bushes and plants to do in the front and I’ll probably wait until Fall since it’s already in the mid-90’s here. I’m happy with our progress!

2. Purge my closet. DONE. Holy cow. I gave 5 trash bags of clothes to my sister and sent 3 to Goodwill. I pulled everything out of my closet, reconfigured the whole layout and then organized it. I feel so much better. I only kept things that I really love and will wear. And I found things that I forgot I even bought because they were buried under the clutter. 

3. Finish master bedroom redo. DONE. Well as done as it’s going to be for now. I still need to finish the area around our desk but I’m still not sure what I want to do there. I’ll finish it once I decide. 

4. Finish all half done projects. DONE. I touched up all the paint on the first floor and all the paint up the stairway and in the hallway and landing of the second floor. I finished painting a small cabinet to go in the upstairs hallway. I gel stained the bar, bench, and table on the back deck. I touched up the gel stain on the kitchen cabinets, island, and the stairway rails and banisters. 

5. Do another big purge of the house. DONE. We took another huge load of stuff to Goodwill and I cleaned out the kids closets again. I think I’ve finally gotten the house to the point where every single nook and cranny is organized and purposeful. Every item has a home. It’s a huge relief!

June Goals:

1. Clear off the DVR & Watch less TV. This is a big one for me. I’ve cut out nearly all the reality shows that are really so dumb that I’m embarrassed to admit I was still watching them. Ha! I mainly watch house shows at this point. I’m a sucker for House Hunters and all those type shows. Matt and I do enjoy a few shows together but for the most part I want to spend less time watching TV and more time outside this summer. 

2. Make my bed every day. I’ve been doing this for about a week now and it’s made such a difference in how I feel when I go upstairs during the day. I love walking into my bedroom and it feels clean and put together. So I want to make this a habit. 

3. Complete 3 house projects. I want to paint the kids bathroom, build a barn door gate to replace the baby gate that keeps the dogs from running out of the house when the kids open the front door, and install a key pad door handle on the front door. 

4. Keep the house clean. I scrubbed and cleaned for the entire last week to get ready for our Memorial Day picnic. The house is spotless. You could eat off my floors and bathe in my toilets. Now I need to keep it this way to avoid being so stressed out. I’m going to create a schedule to help me. I used to have a cleaning schedule and I slacked off. Now is the time to get back to it. 

5. Plan easy summer dinners. We’ve made a commitment to not eat out this summer with the exception of the occasional pizza night. And it’s so hot here that I don’t want to be using the oven every night. So I need to hit Pinterest and make a menu of delicious dinners to try- pasta salads, grilled meats, sliders….I’m excited to try some new things. 

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