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27 May 2016

My hope is that all of you are on your way to greener 3-day-weekend pastures of fun but if you're not and you're stuck with me for the moment ... I'm sorry. I'll try my hardest to make it worth your while.

Linking up with Kelly, once again!

1. We've been making up for getting to the pool at closing time the other night by going virtually every day this week and ... I think we might need to slow our pool going roll because it's like getting gum off the sidewalk trying to get the kids to l-e-a-v-e. It's a good problem but still ... a problem.

after she took off her top for the third time.

I was going through and deleting pictures last night and had to let out the tiniest cackle at the timing of the handstand/cartwheel in the background. Stealing your thunder, T-bone.

2. I've seen not one, not two, but THREE people (one of them being Amy!) sing the praises of The Nest this past week and so I think I'm going to give it a go this weekend. I'll let you know my personal thoughts whatever they may be ... next week. Prime those eardrums. Or pupils, I guess. (I've got my eye on The Assistants too.)

3. My very financial savvy brother told me to sign up for ebates a couple of years ago and I owe him quite a bit of lettuce because it's been SO worth it since we do the bulk of our (non-food ha) shopping online. Regardless of whether or not your hitting up the sales this weekend ... I highly recommend signing up. It's free, of course!

4. Even though I have NO business taking outfit pictures because a fashion blogger I will never be ... I (obviously) still do. Well ... we took some yesterday and the memory card is now totally fried and the pictures are lost and so maybe the universe is giving me a little hint Hint HINT? Probably. Especially because I was wearing glorified culottes.

5. I appreciated when a friend with kids only slightly older than mine shared this post in agreement on Facebook. I know I'll miss the early years of raising kids but was grateful to read this perspective too.

6. How have I made it to number six without talking about the Bachelorette? I don't know. As usual, I loved Sharleen's take on the premier and my favorite is definitely Luke. I think she likes Jordan the most (duh!) and I was prepared not to like him because of all the ex-lady drama but I have to admit he seems like not a terrible dude. The season preview looks d-r-a-m-a-t-i-c but what else should we expect?

7. There's a really great Damn Good Face Wash giveaway over on my IG that ends tonight. Go! And if you don't win you can still score a generous 20% off with code: damngoodpattons20. Kate is Bridget's sister and her stuff is all natural, handmade in small batches, and the BEST. My favorite is the coffee scrub.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. I think we'll be predictable and go to the beach. Fancy that.


highs and lows

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24 May 2016

I feel like I'm setting some new records for boring content these days but it's good to keep the bar niiiiice and low, I suppose. It makes the rest of the blogs look better ... color me selfless.

We've got some trivial highs and some seriously first world problem lows. Ready? Let's go.


1. This is probably an every day occurrence in your home but it's almost sad to admit how elated I was when everyone ate dinner (tacos - nothing fancy, as usual) without complaint the other night. Oh, Phoebe pawned a chunk of her tortilla off on Bosco and Bosco promptly threw it on the ground but everyone else? Ate! Without telling me that such and such makes their stomach hurt or that they no longer like this particular food they used to love. It's the little things, really. How to Raise a Peck of Non-Picky Eaters: A Mom Memoir will be hitting stores .... never. Worry not.

2. As mentioned last week, we went to a pool party over the weekend and you can't know how happy I was to find that the hosts had hired a lifeguard for the afternoon. So thoughtful! Now, did this mean that Simon and I chucked our young into the water and waltzed in the house to do a round of shots followed by keg stands? No. But, it was nice knowing there was a second set of eyes on the kids who seem to possess no fear when it comes to the water - no matter how deep.

3. In that same vein, we totally lucked out and slid into some of the last swimming lesson spots for the kids' skill levels this summer. Julia tells everyone that will listen that she can swim and dive but I'm not sure the abilities to doggy paddle with a puddle jumper and jumping feet first into the kiddie pool do a swimmer/diver make. I'm crossing my fingers that no one suddenly develops velcro-to-mom's-leg syndrome when game time arrives but you know I'll keep you posted either way.

4. I've typed about my love for two-ingredient pancakes before and I still love them but I've started adding a scoop of protein powder, chia seeds, and a little almond milk and it makes all the difference. They tast a lost less eggy and the kids love them too which is nice because they loathed them before which was understandable, to be honest (or tbh as the internet says these days).

5. Bosco's claps ...

he's a one trick pony but he's good for boosting your confidence. All day, every day.

And now for the LOWS ...

1. The other evening Simon and I decided we were going to be the fun and spontaneous parents that we rarely to never are and take the kids for an evening swim on a whim. We got everyone ready, gathered all the towels/sunscreen/EVERYTHING, and made the twenty minute drive to the pool ... that we soon discovered was closing in 10 minutes. The kids kept their riots to a dull roar but it's a mistake we'll only make once. I hope.

2. The other day I finally made the drive out to a consignment (clothing and furniture!) store I keep hearing great things about. I had an empty minivan and a little mental list of things I was hoping to find for the house when I pulled up to the store to find it closed on that particular day. Of course! And sooo I decided to make the short drive over to Ikea (maybe my second favorite thing about Tampa after the weather) where I found a plant for a planter I'd found over on The Haul (cart before the horse, always!). I got to the register and was told that I'd grabbed the display plant that was very much not for sale. Woe is me, I know. 

3. I'm going to persevere through this but Phoebe is really putting up an impressive fight over her afternoon nap that keeps me sane most days. I'm sure the other kids did this around the same age or so I'm telling my foggy memory and frustrated self. I would just let it go if I knew it mean an earlier bedtime but she runs full steam ahead until her usual bedtime with or without the nap so I'm going to keep fighting the good and necessary fight. If I suddenly stop blogging completely ... you'll know that she's won the war.

4. Jojo's season of The Bachelorette premiered last night and I haven't gotten to watch it yet but I'm going to rectify that for at least a few glorious minutes right NOW. (maybe more of a high? time will tell ... )

happy, happy Tuesday. 

real quick!

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20 May 2016

I have absolutely nothing exciting or even remotely exciting to report but that's never (ever!!!) stopped me before so I'm joining Kelly once again.

1. I was so SO excited to see Jenna's post this morning. I agree with all of her sentiments.

2. The other morning the three middle kids weren't getting along and having a rough go at life in general and so even though we had just eaten breakfast I scrounged up three lone popsicles (meant to be!) in the freezer and sent them to the porch because I'm a rebel like that. I'm sure I sent a terrible, "rewarding bad behavior" message but it sort of reset and redirected the formerly terrible tone of the morning and why do I think you care?

Well, feign care a little bit longer for the photographic evidence ...

I promise they were all dressed.

fun fact (that I may have already told you): all the kids have blue eyes but Phoebe has green (or so Simon says -- I see a hint of blue there ... )

moving on!

3. Ever wonder what happened to Mandy Moore? Me neither BUT maybe you've seen it floating around Facebook (because it broke a crazy viewing record) and if you're going through Parenthood withdrawals this show looks promising. I wasn't a Parenthood superfan but it got me through many a nightfloat months and laundry piles and I never missed an episode so I was probably one step below. Anyway, I think it will be GOOD. I hope.

4. We're taking not one but two trips by way of plane this summer over the span of two weeks and many-a-flights with all the kids will be taken ... or at least that's the plan. I'm just preparing for the worst and praying REAL hard for the best. I'll take any tips if you've got them but I'm going to make sure and bring these for the four oldest kids because they all love them and ... no mess (or in Phoebe's case ... very minimal mess).

5. Speaking of Phoebe she's been waking up and telling me with a cackle that she's going to be, "bad!" that day. Self fulfilling prophecy or not ... it's always nice to start the day off on such a positive note.

6. Did you watch the Grey's finale last night? I read the synopsis (I know! why?) and I'm excited to watch tonight.

7. I hope you have a great weekend! We're going to a pool party with the kids and Julia has it in her head that Simon and I will be doing a lot of dancing (?) so I'm going to have to tuck my beloved mini cube of Moscoto into our cooler so as not to let her down. I guess.



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17 May 2016

thank you, Simon, for snapping some pensive pics of me, Bosco, and your finger this past weekend.

1. I rarely write blog posts in advance but I'm writing this on Monday night because Andi's book should be arriving during naps today and I wanted a clear nap time calendar. No shame. Or, maybe a sliver of shame. The teeniest calorie-free sliver.  

2. I've never considered myself to be a competitive person at ALL but then Brandilyn challenged me and a few other girls to a Fitbit challenge this weekend and all of a sudden ... my formerly dormant competitive spirit came alive. Not alive enough to win first (or even second lol) place but look out if you're my Fitbit friend because now I know that challenges are a thing. And I'm game. I think.

3. I'm hoping I'm not alone here but Simon and I (and Bosco!) went through a brief period of denial and panic when we were told (after frantically searching the shelves) that Costco was discontinuing their Kirkland formula. They brought it back a few weeks later (new packaging!) and we breathed heavy and happy sighs of relief. No one does generic like Costco. Really.

"you can eat the sand but it's going to taste just as terrible as the last 78 times you tried it"

4. Like a lot of parents (and people, of course) I spend a lot of time doing laundry, folding laundry, putting the bleeping laundry away and while it's not my favorite it's not my chore nemesis either. I've actually found that I get sadly excited about checking the washed laundry to see if I got that one stubborn stain out of that one kid's shirt and get a bit of a high if I'm successful - especially on my first try. I'm guessing that these ARE the glory days.

5. I rarely to never wear lipstick but find myself watching Kylie Lip Kit reviews after the kids have gone to bed and I'm completely mesmerized by each and every one of them. Every time. Simon doesn't even try to hide his judgy side eye.

6. I've heard so many people say that they've given up on Grey's Anatomy and while I did give up for a few years ... I've been lured back in. Big time. My excuse is that I like to watch something while I fold aforementioned laundry but I would probably be watching even if I didn't want to take my mind of some monotonous chore. I have a lot of questions after last week's episode but in case there are any other lone watchers out there that aren't caught up I'll keep them to myself.

So now that you know all my vapid not-so-secrets ... it always makes me so happy to read yours. Spill if you care/dare to!



under the Florida sun

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16 May 2016

I know I've mentioned it before but our very first beach trip here in Florida, we managed to get sunscreen on all the kids but which parent was going to put sunscreen on the kids faces was somehow lost in the shuffle and hurried translation and we had a couple of bright red faces on our hands. I still feel guilty about it and Julia's first official school picture will forever haunt and reawaken that guilt because her face was the color of a cherry tomato. While I'll always regret not being more careful and cognizant of the intense summer sun it was a really valuable reminder about the important of never ever forgetting to coat the kids in SPF, especially down here where the sun doesn't play games.

We were at the beach for about two hours one morning a couple of weekends ago, the sun was behind clouds almost the entire time, and I was camped out under an umbrella for a lot of the time and still! A little patch of my arm that I'd missed with sunscreen was very painfully burned. I think you get the point.

We are loyal devotees of their toothpaste and shampoo/body wash so I was excited and had high hopes and expectations when The Honest Company sent us their new sunscreen line to check out. and I was really happy to see that they made a stick that makes face application pretty painless - even for babies. Their spray is our favorite for reapplication after the kids have been in and out and in and out and in and out of the water. Being the fair skinned and fairly fair haired bunch that we are - I'm always sure to spray hat-hating kids' scalp as well. Phoebe's hair is so thin and almost transparent and I worry more about her head just as much as the rest of her exposed skin - if not more.

I didn't realize that not all sunscreens were the same in how they protect and zinc oxide is the only FDA-approved single active ingredient that provides broad spectrum protection against UVA1, UVA2, and UVB rays (I didn't know there were all these different kinds either - so much to learn, always). The Honest Company's mineral sunscreen is made with 19% zinc oxide and is both and safe and effective for the whole family.

I'm prone to breakouts and am always reluctant to try any new anything lest I pay for it in the weeks following but because the sunscreen is lightweight and non-greasy -- I'm not burned or broken out which I appreciate.

cue the happy jump a la Julia (she who skips/dances everywhere she goes these days)

Simon may have been a little overzealous on Theo's scalp protection but better safe than sorry ... 

... so goes our sun mantra.

Phoebe takes it to heart too ...

If you're in the market for some safe and effective sun protection Camp readers can purchase the mineral sunscreen bundle from The Honest Company and get 35% off with code: SUNCAMP35OFF.*

 And then enjoy a little footloose and fancy free sunshine ...

like so.

The Honest Company is also giving away a sunscreen bundle (the lotion, spray, and the stick) along with a bath and body bundle (their bodywash, shampoo, and conditioner- a $68 value altogether!) to one lucky Camp reader. You should know the Rafflecopter road well by now! Best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Monday!

Terms: *Eligible for new honest.com Bundle subscribers only. Limit 1 Promo Code per customer/household. Code must be entered into "Promo Code" section at Checkout. Ends at 11:59pm on 6/30/16. Valid for up to 2 Bundles purchased in a single transaction. Cannot be applied to previous purchases, Gift Card purchases or Gift Bundles. Cannot be redeemed for cash or combined with any other promotion. Terms subject to change at any time.


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