Thursday, July 30, 2015

FIVE on Friday

We're BACK!! We just returned from a fun filled vacation, and I can't wait to share pictures with you next week. It's funny how vacation with kids, while exciting, almost requires a parent vacation at the end.
For now, I'm celebrating the start of the weekend, not a lot on our schedule and LOTS OF SUNSHINE!! Locals, did you hear we broke a record for heat in Seattle? 10+ days with temps over 90 degrees. No laughing, you Southerners!! We don't have a/c around here! #immelting
Back to my favorites!


This cookbook!! If you are a 21-day fixer, or even if you're not, this cookbook is amazing! I don't like recipes that take forever to make and require 12469369 billion ingredients. I like simple and quick. All of the recipes are like that! I've already got my menus planned out for the first 2 weeks in August, thanks to this cookbook. And if you are a Shakeology lover, there are some fun and easy recipes in the back! Try tropical strawberry with frozen blueberries and fresh basil. You can thank me later. And if you need help ordering, let me know!

One of my favorite moments was from vacation, at the waterpark, when Brylie fell asleep on my hubby...on the lazy river! I'm not kidding, I melted into a huge puddle. It was the sweetest. I think we did at least 6 laps around the river to let her sleep and I lost track of the ooohs and ahhhs as they passed by. Pure heaven.

MOPS. If you are a mother to a child age infant-kindergarten, you've got to find a local MOPS group to get involved with! This year, I'm blessed to be the leader of our church's MOPS group and I'm having such a great time planning. We have a retreat in a couple weeks, which is the first order of business, and then planning out the year. The theme this year is, "Fierce Flourishing" and how cute are the colors?! I'm SO pumped for this year!! Connecting with moms, crafting, chatting, and fellowshipping is probably my favorite day of the week.

Some of you have emailed me to ask what I decided about jeans at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. I forgot to update! I ended up picking these. I love them and don't feel like I have anything like them in my closet. And for $41 you can't lose!! Hurry. Sale ends on Sunday!
This quote from Pinterest is one of my favorites. With the technology age, it's easy to feel inadequate. Comparing yourself to others is the easiest way to feel lacking and insecure. If you have kids, understand that YOU were designed to be their parent, YOU are the one who is the best and can meet their needs the most. It's a great reminder for those days when we feel we aren't doing our job well.
Don't do it

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

What's Up Wednesday?!

I love linking up with some of my favorite bloggers for this monthly series!

Normally, I'm eating pretty healthy and follow the guidelines of the 21-day fix containers, as well as my favorite...Shakeology! However, we have been traveling and having some fun, and it's safe to say that we've been cheating a bit. Pizza and fish tacos are not on the healthy train, but they sure are good! And don't forget that Starbucks treat receipts are back!!!! My favorite time of year!

 Summer always makes me want to vacation more. I reminiscing not only about our trip to the beach, but of our trip to Hawaii at Christmas. I loooooove the beach. Sand in the toes, wind in the hair and drink in the hand. #perfection


I can't remember if I shared about this on the blog yet. I know I shared it on Instagram! If you like rootbeer and you like beer (or really, you don't have to like it much because you can hardly taste it!) try this!! It tastes like a rootbeer mixed with cream soda and it's amazing!! There is alcohol in it, so it's not a kids' drink, but I really love it!


Soaking up every minutes of summer. My kids are fish and have probably spent as much time in the water as out. I'm so proud of this girl who is becoming a really, really good swimmer! She's got floaties on here, but she is able to swim quite a distance with no help. Seriously, love her!

We've also been up to some fun vacations. Sharing more about those, soon!


The end of summer. But, we've still got about 7 weeks, so I'm trying not to think about it too much!


My goal by the end of the month, is to develop a screen time rule for the house. I've been searching high and low for something that I think will work, and I really like this list that was shared on Facebook the other day. I'm going to adapt it to make it work for our family, and then I'll share! Thinking of even stricter rules for the school year...maybe even NO screen time during the week. But, still in the thinking process on that. If you have ideas on this, I'd love to hear!

I know I've shared a lot about my newest passion :: Beachbody ::, but there are so many great {new} products out there. Cize is the newest workout series that combines exercise with hip hop dance. This is an awesome alternative if you are looking to try something fun and new! Please contact me at: if you'd like more info on how to order. Or, there is still time to join my August 21-day fix challenge group! So much great stuff going on that I am excited to share with you!!

I put this on my list for June, but it's over 500 pages and we've had a busy summer, so I'm just now finishing it! I have a few books on my que and I'm excited to share about those, soon. For now, you've got to go and get this one! It's a great read and offers a really interesting perspective on life and how quickly things can change.

As for what I'm watching, I shared the other day, that we have been binge watching Blacklist. In fact, we finished all episodes of season 1 (22 of them!) last week, so we are about to start season 2. I also watched the finale of the Bachelorette last night. Can I be honest? I wasn't impressed AT ALL. In fact, I think this was my least favorite season of all time. Kaitlyn wasn't my favorite and I didn't like either of the final guys. #teamBen Hoping Ben is the next Bachelor. I was happy to see him go, because I think he'll find a much better woman on his own.


The theme of the summer is jean shorts (Kut from the Kloth) and tanks. I got both of these at Nordstrom, but they were last season. Sorry I don't have links! And no, I don't normally take selfies in a mirror, but I had no pictures of what I was wearing besides this. Ha!


Probably a whole lot of laundry, unpacking and getting our house ready for a busy week!


More summer break!!! I love that school isn't starting until September 8th this year, which means teachers don't have to go back at all in August. Whoop! Although football starts back in a couple weeks, I'm looking forward to lots more lazy mornings, a camping trip with friends, a couple basketball tournaments, some BBQ's and the start of Seahawks pre-season football!!!!


All of the above! Although it can be exhausting, I LOVE that all 6 of us are home together for the entire summer. Our days are often busy, but our mornings usually start slow. I also love staying up late and having *much* more time with the hubs in the summer. Seriously, that's what I look forward to most! Oh, and the constant sunshine and blue skies, the ability to be spontaneous whenever we want. And ice coffees with a good book and a lawn chair.

Sunday, July 26, 2015


I feel like an appropriate title for this post, would be "the past two weekends". I got busy and missed last weekends post, so I'm combining them and doing a little bit of "life lately."
Last weekend, my parents generously offered to keep the kids overnight and we did a parents' night out with some of our best friends. We met at a fun little restaurant right on the waterfront for drinks and appetizers, and then headed to a local minor league baseball game for the evening. We scored tickets to the Summit Club and had a really great time! I can't remember the last time we went away for the night, so we tried to soak up every minute.

We also ended a week of VBS. I love our church and they put on an absolutely AMAZING VBS program. I love hearing the hearts of all of these children who are learning about Jesus. Faith like a child.

Saturday isn't complete without a trip to Menchie's. We celebrated my sweet friend (and across-the-street neighbor's) birthday. Her hubby was on a work trip on her birthday and no one should ever celebrate alone! We did fro yo and the park! Our kids get along so great and we had a really nice time just letting them play.


How cute are these two?!
Meanwhile, our biggest boy was on a camping trip with some of our other awesome neighbors. They've got four kids and were brave enough to add another with Jake.

Are they not the cutest ever?! 5 boys and 1 very protected girl!

This picture signifies most of our weekend....we've binge watched the entire first season of Blacklist. I'm not kidding, we were hooked! So much so that we would stay up until 1am watching. Thank goodness our kids have been sleeping in every day, or we would be zombies.

Molly drew a sweet little picture for me. I asked why our family only had 5 people and she reminded me that there was someone on the back. Of course. Ha!

This past week, we headed up near Mt. Rainier for a hike with friends. Everything we read and heard was that it was kid friendly. I didn't realize how steep it was! 2.4 miles round trip and it was like climbing the entire way. The kids did AWESOME! I carried Brylie on my hip that majority of the time. Not because she couldn't walk, but I didn't want her to!

After the hike, we found a local place (it was actually a massive dam) for the kids to hang out. We had a great time exploring the area for the first time.

We also swam with some of our favorite little friends. Two of them aren't pictured, but we had a fun morning!

Which brings us to this weekend. Adam's mom got tickets to the Rainier's game (the same team we had seen playing last weekend), and took Adam, Jake and Adam's grandpa to the game. Free food, drinks and a great night for baseball!

Saturday was so awesome! I spent the day at the Seattle Super Saturday Beachbody event. I attended with my friend and coach, Ashley. It's so inspiring to listen to stories, hear tips about the business, and be motivated to work harder. I love working for this company and I love helping people reach their health and fitness goals!

Sunday, after church, we came home and it rained. And rained. And rained. We haven't seen rain since May and it was SOOOOO needed. I immediately put my sweats on, poured coffee and soaked it all in.

And I'll leave you with one last picture. One of my upline Beachbody coaches mailed me a package with a selfie stick (and a few other SWEET gifts). Jake and I had fun testing it out. Hehe.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Kale chips

I've got a great, super easy, recipe for you! These are amazing and even the kids will gobble them up.
What you need:
bunch of kale
olive oil
ranch seasoning
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees.
Cut the long stems off of the kale.
Toss them in a bowl with 3-4 Tbsp of olive oil (more or less depending on the amount of kale used)
Lay flat on a baking sheet
Sprinkle ranch seasoning evenly across all of the kale
Stick in oven for 20-25 minutes. You may have to remove the outside pieces at the 20 minute mark and then bake an additional 5 minutes for the inside pieces.
Cool and serve.

I'm not kidding, these are addicting! They are crunchy and have great flavor. I like them almost as much as I like chips. And if you know me, that's a lot! A much healthier choice and serves as a great side with BBQ food. Perfect for summer.
Even if you are skeptical, give them a try! I think you'll be surprised!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

A beach getaway

My family just got back from a quick 2-day getaway to the ocean. It's only a couple hours from our house, and the perfect place to find some wide open space, relax, let the kids run free and just soak it all in.
We started the day at the family fun center. Not sure the actual name, but it was fun and we went as a family, so there you go! ;-)

Our boys had to ride in different races because of their height...Jake is 59" and Brett is 52" (just needed to document that because I know I'll forget!).

Adam took Molly in the double. They had SO MUCH FUN!! Poor Brylie was screaming, "I wanna go with DADDY!!" over and over. It was fun to stand with her on the sides. Not.

After that, we got some ice cream. I remember getting ice cream here when I was a kid, so it was fun to bring my own back to enjoy. I didn't order any myself, but I did earn the label of "master cone licker"....just trying to help the kids out and save them from ice cream all over their shirts!

After that, we spent the afternoon at the beach. Our hotel was "beachfront", but that means walking through a half mile of trails and tall grass before you get to the beach.

And from then on...GAME ON! The beach is always a lot cooler than the inland areas, but this was about 20 degrees cooler than we've been used to! Don't get me wrong, it was a nice change, but combined with the cool water and I was chilly!

But, when you are little, temps ain't no thang! These two crazies hopped right in, fully clothed, and started jumping the waves. I wish I had video of the giggles and laughs and absolute fun.

She came running up to me, screaming, and I was sure she was upset about being cold and wet. As she got closer, I realized the screaming was because she was having so much fun! She stripped off her pants and ran straight back out.

Dinner was at a local spot and the seafood was A-MAZ-ING!! I had a fish taco that I could eat every day. That good.

After dinner, we walked around town a bit.

This might have been the highlight of the trip. Who doesn't love some salt water taffy?!

And then back to the beach for a beautiful evening.
We also swam for at least an hour, then attempted to fit all 6 of us in one hotel room with two overtired, oversugared little girls. Thankfully, Adam was brilliant and tossed them in the car (well, buckled them in their carseats) and drove around town for a few minutes. They were out and we were able to transfer them right into their beds.
Morning came bright and early, so we got breakfast at the hotel, headed to a local coffee shop and then took a drive on the beach.

We found a great spot to stake our claim and spent hours just playing.

And that's a wrap!

I love this family of mine and the memories that we have been able to make. Traveling with four kids isn't easy, but it's worth it.