Wednesday, July 23, 2014

We ARE Playing Soccer!

So we are playing soccer. I'm hoping it'll be great fun for everyone, especially the three year old, and really my only expectation is that he will respect and obey the coach. If this happens, then that is a successful season to me. And, I should also say, I have no reason not to expect a successful season. Obviously as he gets older the expectations will grow. Thank you for your comments on the subject yesterday.

On the advice of a neighbor, we shopped for his gear last weekend. She mentioned that by the time she started searching for her son's shoes and shin guards last spring, everything was picked over. So off to Academy we went!

We found a great pair of inexpensive Adidas cleats in his size, and big enough to fit his soccer socks in with the shin guard stirrup or whatever that piece is called around the ankle. If necessary, we'll just swap out the laces, although I doubt the fact that they are blue will be that big of a deal.

I also ordered some great Under Armor shorts (found here) from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale for practice since we mostly have khaki-type shorts. Time for the bigger kid stuff! Also, our favorite tennis shoes are only $29.90 right now during the sale. That's a bargain.

Time to get a jump on back to school shopping!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Should 3 Year Olds Play Sports?

I'm not sure if this is still a popular site or not for new and expecting moms, but I get weekly e-mail updates on the development of my kids through Babycenter. And I usually delete it when I'm cleaning up my inbox en masse each week because I don't take the time to read them. However, last week a headline on the supposed development of my oldest caught my attention. It said something to the affect of "Should Your 3 Year Old Play Team Sports"?

Image courtesy of hin255/

I clicked on it because we're lately interested and crazy excited about signing up our little guy for soccer. The idea of him in his soccer uniform makes me a little giddy, to be honest. The article surprised me. I was expecting it to say how great it was to start them early with exercise, learning to identify with a team, etc. This quote basically summarizes the article: "Most 3-year-olds aren't up for the complexities of team sports or classes just yet." And the tone discourages signing them up.

I understand what they're trying to say. If we are talking about technical ability, then yes, my 3 year old is probably not ready to focus solely on the game through 4 quarters, stay in his position, and the like. However, I think the article would have been better if it focused more on how parents should manage their expectations of 3 year olds when they inevitably sign them up for the game. It should be a fun, learning experience. When it's not, evaluate why and take corrective action, right?

Without a doubt, all children are different in a situation like this. How old were you when you started team sports? What do you think is a good age?

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Tap, Tap, this thing on?

When I last checked in from a long pause, I mentioned that we were busy with all kinds of stuff over the next few weeks. The very first thing on that agenda--youth camp--knocked me off my game. I've been digging myself out of laundry, toys, dust, floors that needed to be vacuumed and the like since we got home. Only this week am I beginning to feel like I'm catching up.

The kids are having a great summer! After youth camp, we had Vacation Bible School at our church. Mid-week, our children's and young adult ministry areas flooded due to heavy rains in our city, which was intense. We are trusting God to provide for the repairs needed. We're talking lots of new carpet and sheetrock. No one will soon forget VBS 2014 around there.

The following week was the first of two in swim lessons for our boy, plus we all had a post-VBS summer cold. It's amazing how quickly one can progress in a skill when focused on it for two weeks. He's gone from not wanting to get in straight to loving the water. Tomorrow is his last day, and Monday we have no commitments.

Other than those items, we're squeezing in as much summer fun as we can. Snowcones some evenings, popsicles on the back porch, and thankfully, some naps for all too. Noses are finally drying up, and now that the 100 degree days are hitting here, we're glad to have lazy days at hand.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

MELT Ice Creams in Fort Worth, Texas

Last weekend we tried out the new boutique ice cream shop here in Fort Worth, called MELT. The ice cream is made in house, and they "[strive to use] the best local and seasonal produce as possible!"

We tried their two standard flavors, Beans (vanilla) and Chocolate Chocolate, as well as the Avoca Mocha, which obviously was coffee flavored using coffee from Avoca just around the corner. The chocolate was made with chunks of Dude Sweet Chocolate, an artisan chocolate shop here in Fort Worth we'd never heard about.

I think Beans was my favorite of the 3 we had, although all 3 were great. I loved that it introduced us to another Fort Worth business (Dude Sweet Chocolate) that we'll be trying out very soon. The bright yellow decor was just an extension of the happiness that ice cream brings! We'll definitely be there again, and next time I will try one of their homemade waffle cones. They smelled amazing.

Find them on Rosedale, and enjoy!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Cover Ups: A Reason to not Dread Swimsuits

Last week I talked about a little about my swimsuit search. But now onto the fun stuff. It's so much more fun to put on a swimsuit if you have a super cute cover up to...cover it up.

Swim Cover-ups

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Numbers 1-4 are all from Forever 21, so you know they're priced well. One of my favorite cover-ups came from there are a few years ago. It was a great buy. Number 5 I have personally seen up close at Old Navy, and it's super cute. It's total resort wear! (There is a white version as well, but it is completely sheer. Boo.) Number 6 from Nordstrom is more of a splurge for a cover-up, but I loved it so much I had to include it. Since it's a dress, you can get more wear from it, thus lower cost per wear. So it's an economical purchase, right?

{Somewhere my husband is shaking his head.}

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Aggieland, Texas USA

Back at the end of May, we road tripped to College Station for the day to watch the Aggies play baseball with our friends, the Cooks. It was a gorgeous day for it. The weather was the first really good and warm day we've had.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: if you have to have a corporate sponsor for your ball field, the best case scenario is Blue Bell, the best ice cream in the country. They also did a great job of preserving the Olsen Field feel. It still feels like I remember, just upgraded.

Jack's favorite thing of course was the train coming down the track right beside the ball field. The first train that came by was like OHMYGOSHNOWAYTHISISAWESOME. Little guys love trains! We might have cemented him coming to A&M with that one.

After the 7th inning, our kids had sat long enough, played long enough on the covered playground (so nice), and had eaten plenty of junk from the concession stand, so we took off on a walk through the heart of campus. It was Final Review Weekend, so there were quite a few parents there with their students.

You can't see it here, but I found this maroon shirt at Anthro that will be great for game day.

Campus is a lot prettier now than I remember it, probably due to so much construction over the last few years. Right now of course they are working on the Kyle Field renovations. It's going to be amazing!

This is the student side, with the Zone (north end zone) just barely in the right of the picture.

A great trip for sure. It's so fun to walk through our memories with our kids, even if they're not old enough to understand quite yet!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Summertime = Swim Time

For the past three summers, I've been shimmying into a black one piece swimsuit that could accommodate about a 30-40 lb weight difference. I am truly impressed with that incredibly boring swimsuit and how it worked to make my twice post-baby body look as okay as possible with what it had to work with. It was worth the investment.

But this summer of 2014 is a new summer, and I was ready to go swimsuit shopping. (Thank you, Pure Barre.) It's inevitable that I'll be chasing my kids around water features, so I might as well do it in something that I like rather than my dutiful plain old black shirred one that served me so well.

One day on a regular trip to the recycling bin to throw out the numerous catalogs I receive in the mail, I was struck by a swimsuit on the front of Lands' End. The stripes paired with polka dots was just my style and immediately I knew what I wanted for this summer. Our local Sears carries the Lands' End line, so I popped in to try on and was impressed with the tankini tops. They have underwire and are just really well made for holding it all in. This is so nice especially if you're running around with children.

Or likely holding them while they pull on your swim top. You feel me?

I purchased this top and these bottoms. In my lifetime, I will probably not strike any pose nearly as cute as this woman, and especially not in a swimsuit.

While I was in there I also tried on these rash guards which claim to provide UPF 50 sun protection. I'm ALL over covering up these days because I have a family history of melanoma. The sun shirts are so, so, SO cute on and made of swim material so they can get wet and will dry quickly. I sized down. I liked the pink stripes too, but the sleeves are two different pink stripes, and I like symmetry.

Multi-stripe Crew Neck Swim Tee
Tie-dye Crew Neck Swim Tee

At the risk of sounding like a grandmother, I think there are some really cute things in the Lands' End line for this summer for so many different ages and stages of life. Cute bikinis, much more modest options of swim dresses and higher waisted bottoms abound. Go check it out!

This was not sponsored by Lands' End--I just wanted to pass along the find. There are affiliate links in this post.
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