Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Spring Break Swimwear for Kids

Have y'all had your Spring Break yet?  Ours just started, and over the weekend we did a little family get-together at our house with an old fashioned hamburger and hotdog bbq, and ended the evening with roasted marshmallows and firecracker snappers.  Just being around family and taking it easy, enjoying each other and the kiddos after a roller coaster of emotions was really nice.  And, after talking it over with our family, we agreed to continue with the short ski trip we planned months ago.    It will be James' first airplane ride too and he cannot wait! I think the time away will do us good.  Grandpa would like that. 


Did y'all see Big Hero Six?  Such a cute movie! 

For our little party, the bacon wrapped jalepenos with cream cheese are a family favorite and my husband made sure to buy the real-deal thick cut bacon (as opposed to my usual center cut) this time. "I'm thinking of our guests," he said;) He also made sure to tell me to use one whole slice of bacon per jalepeno and man, are they so good! I cooked them in the oven for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees.  10 jalepenos sliced in half (making 20 total) was perfect for six adults.  Not one left over! (For easier cleanup and so they bacon can drain, line your baking sheet with foil, then cook the jalepenos on a cookie rack).


If your Spring Break includes some pool time or a beachy vacay, you can stock up for kids at Nordstrom.  Our weather is heating up so it'll be no time before we're out at the pool instead of just our yard.  My son was learning to swim last year and had just gotten the hang of it when the summer ended so we'll see where we pick up this year.  Might need more lessons. 

He has outgrown his swim trunks so I picked him up a new pair, along with a pair of goggles, watch, and sunglasses.  He thinks it's so cool that the watch tells time (lights up) when you press it and he's also interested in what time it is so now he can look for himself instead of asking me every five minutes. The sunglasses are also practical for the car because the sun is always in his blue eyes.  The babbiators (for babies/toddlers and little boys/girls) are also popular, but we haven't tried them.  They come in lots of different colors too. 


Fresh air + water + family always equals a good time.  Aren't these swimsuits the cutest?!  I'm always jealous of the adorable girls' bathing suits, but the selection for boys is good too at Nordstrom.  (Click the picture for the link). 












You can see my women's swimwear picks here.


Have a great week friends!  

I have a little giveaway planned for tomorrow.  It's nothing huge, but I started Bible journaling awhile ago and the first Bible I bought didn't work out for me- the font is too small for my old eyes!  If you are interested in it though, leave a comment on tomorrow's post and I'll pick a winner at random to send it to.  Otherwise, see y'all Monday!

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I'm proud to partner with Nordstrom on today's post. 
Affiliate links used








Sunday, March 29, 2015

Big Hugs & Motorcycles

With a grateful heart, I have read every message and comment you've left, sympathizing with me over the loss of my Dad.  It was a long, hard fight and he did us proud.  So many of you have also lost a parent or other family member and I'm struck by how much the same our pain is, no matter where in the world we are, or what our life circumstances.  We can relate to each other through the life experiences that we share.  I actually thought twice about sharing that my Dad died.  I know most people read blogs for inspiration and pretty things, but such a monumental life event will shape me  forever and therefore, my blog that reflects me.  

That so many people who don't even know me (and those that do), took time out of their day to send a sweet word really touched me.  The outpouring of love and support has been strongly felt and graciously received.  I don't mind admitting that I needed it.  It makes me so glad I didn't shut you out.  And I thank you so very much for your own heart tugs over our loss. 

My best friend drove 3 hours to stay with me this weekend and her medicine is the best kind. The flowers we've received are gorgeous and so thoughtful. We won't do a formal service, but plan to do something intimate and special this summer to honor our Dad and his memory.  Of course, life goes on and I'm actually thankful for the diversion.  There's no "relief" from losing someone, but I can say there is comfort in knowing they aren't suffering and that the love you shared was acknowledged with nothing left unsaid or unfinished.  

Our son started t-ball this weekend and seeing all those adorable little boys and girls all dressed up in their uniforms for the first time, amped up and ready to play ball was so fun that I can't help but think to myself, "life is good."  Seeing the little cousins laugh and play is also good for the soul. 


After the 8am t-ball game, we went out to breakfast.  The parking lot was completely empty when we arrived, but after we finished and headed outside, I noticed a whole row of motorcycles parked just in front of car.  My Dad loved to ride and I can't help but choose to believe that those motorcycles on that Saturday morning were a sign from him.  How cool is that?!  Do you get those same kinds of signs?  I'd be honored to know. 

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

In Loving Memory

We don't have too many pictures of my parents, which makes this beautiful one even more special.   


This is a couple that has been completely in love since the tender age of 17.  Not long after they met, they eloped in a tiny church, ignoring the critical judgment of my grandma and everyone else.  My mom changed into her wedding gown, a light blue long, paisley halter dress, at a gas station on the way.  Even so, she made a beautiful bride with her feathered hair, and him a handsome, slender groom.  

Through the rough times, and there were many, they persevered.  When the world around them was crashing down, they held on to each other and a hope and a prayer.  Their home never 'felt' poor.    Quite the opposite; it was rich in love.  They raised a daughter and two sons.  The children grew up thinking all adult couples spooned on the couch every night when they watched tv.  That Dads were always there to protect and moms worked hard and secretly liked getting their butts pinched all the time.  And when you fought, you fought loud and hard, but never for long.  

Nearly 33 years after that young couple married, they danced at my wedding.  This is how I want to remember my Dad.  Strong, handsome and happy.  Free of pain, not only able to walk, but to dance as well.  To hold close the family he loved so very, very much.  I hope in heaven he is getting to ride the most badass motorcycles as fast as they will go and feel the breeze through a head full of hair.  It's your turn to soar Dad, to be in a place where life is always on your side and you get to experience a love we can only speculate about here. 

I wish you so much peace.  Our hearts are broken without you and our family will never be the same.  

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"Tray" Chic Organizing

Have you been to Jen's (iHeart Organizing) blog lately?  Talk about a busy lady! She just got back from NY for a collaboration with HomeGoods and is also in the midst of a crazy good kitchen remodel.  You've got to see this space- they've got gorgeous white planked & beamed ceilings, IKEA cabinets installed and hardware chosen.  And did I mention that they are doing the vast majority of this reno themselves?!  Talk about rockstars.  Super talented and genuine rockstars.   iHeart has also been nominated for the Better Homes & Gardens DIY Blogger Award!  You can cast your vote here (you may have to click through a couple categories first).  Way to go Jen!  So happy to see her being recognized.  

And if you want to take a peek at my iHeart contributor post this month, "Tray" Chic Organizing, head here.  


For more of my organization posts, check out my ORGANIZE tab.  Hope y'all have a great day!
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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wardrobe Wednesday | Easter & Spring Dresses

What's Easter without a new Easter dress?!  Of course, I kid, although even as a little girl, I remember  going shopping for a new dress to wear to church on Easter Sunday.  And then of course we had to get a new pair of fancy flat sandals to go with it.  It was a special event since we didn't go shopping often or usually dress up for church.  Now, as an adult, I still like to wear a special dress on Easter and I'm seeing the cutest bright, floral dresses which are a departure from the typical white dress I wore as a girl.  What do you think of these colorful dresses?  

Monday, March 23, 2015

New Colorful Spring Handbags

Happy Monday friends! Hope your weekend was good to you and you're starting the week off feeling fresh and ready to go.  Most Mondays find me super ambitious to tackle everything on my to-do list, but also dragging, wishing for just one more day of weekend, hence the need for two cups of coffee to get me going.  Can you relate?!  

The calendar says Spring is here, although most of the country is still cold and so ready for a reprieve from jackets and boots. How about we revel in some gorgeous, bright, and beautiful Spring handbags?!?! If you're like me, I start getting excited about a new bag just about this time of year.  Nordstrom's selection of purses right now is killer and if I had to pick just one, I'd be really stumped to decide.  For now,  I'm rounding up all.the.colorful.bags and letting you tell me which one is your favorite.  Drumroll please . . . .  

Friday, March 20, 2015

Weekend Steals & Deals

And we're off to the start of the weekend!  What are you up to? On our agenda is a shrimp boil at our friends' house, kids double birthday party, and weekend dinner at my parents' house.  In Texas, lots of people love crawfish boils, but growing up in California and Ohio, I've never gotten into the crawfish thing.  They are called "mud bugs" for a reason.  #notafan  I'm happy our friends opted for a shrimp boil instead! As for the kids' birthday, this will be the second time parents have combined two friends birthdays into one party and I think it's a great idea.  This one is scheduled for the playground at the park; I hope the weather cooperates.  Last weekend was full of sunshine, but it's been rainy, rainy the past couple days.  I've been dressing in my 'mom uniform' lately lots of denim, tanks and tees. 

weekend steals & deals
NORDSTROM:  Earn Triple Points this weekend, March 18-22. 

My 'Very Favorite Tee' (regular & petite, other colors/stripes) $25 note: I found it runs large, I'm wears XXSP here and have another one in XSP and it fits too, just a tad longer | initial necklace | jeans (unavailable, but see other distressed jeans on this post) | jean shorts (white) mine are from last year, hopefully GAP will carry them again because they are probably the single-most worn thing in my closet (these are similar)
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