Monday, December 15, 2014


Another Christmas weekend has come and gone. This one was full of holiday fun, and I'm dragging! Today I'm linking up for the first time with B Loved Boston for her Weekending series.

Friday we headed east to see Santa at Northpark Center. I've posted about it in years past, but the Santa there is just so wonderful and great with the kids. There were children's choirs and great decorations, and it's just a lot of fun. Tomorrow I'll be posting our official Santa pic with the details of how that went down.

Checking out the ducks and turtles
The calm before the Santa storm

Friday evening, after some awesome post-Santa naps for everyone including me, after Dad got home we decided to take our chances with Sundance Square here in Fort Worth. We ate at Uno's and then walked around the square. It's absolutely magical all lit up for the season, and even more so with the live jazz band playing Christmas music Friday night.

The mural at the base of the big tree
Family selfie

Saturday we all slept in (that means we were up by 7), then had a lazy morning. We drove to Corsicana in the late afternoon to catch the Living Christmas Tree at First Baptist. My mom sang in the tree this year, and the kids loved it. They were quiet and even still during parts of it! After a quick supper, we changed the kids into their pajamas for an easy move from carseat to bed when we finally got home around 11:30.

After church on Sunday, we all came home for naps after such a late night. Later I wrapped gifts with "help" and made lists of everything I have to do this week. We have supper club on Friday night, we're hosting a Christmas party for our Sunday school class on Saturday evening, and my in-laws are coming to celebrate Christmas with us Sunday afternoon through Tuesday. I've got backing and cleaning to get moving on, plus those last few Christmas gifts to track down.

I'm sure your to-do list is as long as mine. Here's to getting it done with our Christmas cheer still in one piece!

Monday, December 8, 2014


Our weekend was filled with Christmas fun!

Friday night, all four of us headed up to the church to help with the annual Christmas Store. To help give children in the surrounding community a joy-filled Christmas, our church sets up a store for their parents to come and shop. The toys are a gift from our church family. While the parents are shopping, our middle and high school students (with adult supervision, of course) do fun activities with their kiddos. It's such a fun night--you can't help but leave with an abundance of Christmas cheer!

After that, we headed to Ol' South Pancake House with the students. It was a late night, but that didn't stop our kids from waking up at 7:15 am like they do every single morning. Good times. And great naps, later that afternoon. I had a Christmas luncheon on Saturday for a "new mom" ministry I'm involved in. Not only was it at my favorite tea room, but I also splurged and had peppermint chocolate chunk cheesecake. Merry Pure Barre to me.

That evening, Jack and I headed out to find Annabelle's Christmas present from him. He has decided on his own, that since sister pink puffy hearts Elsa, he wants her to have an Elsa doll. A singing Elsa doll, to be exact. (Sister sings it non-stop, so now she'll be able to duet.) We only visited Toys R Us, and their shelves were totally empty. If we strike out at Target tonight, he may be getting his first lesson in online shopping tomorrow.

Sunday was church in the morning, then back in the evening for the choir's beautiful Christmas performance. This year the special guest performer was Jodi McBrayer formerly of the Christian group, Avalon. Jack went in with us and did great! Any wiggles were calmed down with a few marshmallows I packed in my bag for such a time as this.

Here's my current view from the couch where I'm blogging this afternoon. I finally got something up on the mantle Sunday afternoon. Simple, easy, twinkle lights, done.

I hope you have a great week!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Gifts for Cozy Winter Evenings

Gifts for Cozy Winter Evenings

I keep hearing everyone say we're going to have quite a ride this winter, and it's got me thinking about some of my favorite cozy comforts. Here are some of my favorite gifts to keep cozy on those winter nights.

Clockwise from top left:

Barefoot Dreams Drape Wrap
This beautiful cardigan is made by a blanket company, so you'll literally wrap the recipient in one of the softest blankets they'll ever cuddle up in. I already have one of these under the tree for someone I love. It is fabulous.

Lollia Breathe Tranquil Bubble Bath
Who doesn't love a fabulous bubble bath? A perfect gift for almost anyone at a nice price point. This is one of my favorite gifts to give, as well as receive.

Jo Malone Red Roses Bath Oil
Adding oil to a hot bath is a great way to keep skin hydrated during the long winter. This Red Roses scent is beautiful. What better way to relax than combining moisture, fabulous scent, and a nice hot, nourishing bath?

Embraceable Pajama Top and Bottoms
For the girl who slips into her pjs as soon as she walks through the door, this soft and comfy set will become her fast favorite.

kai Body Butter
This wonderful body butter feels as luxe as the tag declares. One of Oprah's Favorite Things several (many?) years ago, it's absolutely worth the price. The gardenia smell is divine.

Ugg Dakota Slippers
To keep her tootsies warm during these long dreary months, give her a classic moccasin slipper. My pick is the rich pewter color.

What's your favorite creature comfort to cuddle up during these cold winter months?

Monday, December 1, 2014

Thanksgiving Holiday

Last week, the kids and I set out for Corsicana on Tuesday after naps. Mr. G was working Wednesday, and we were planning to take two cars anyway because we had that much stuff between his hunting gear and Jack's 4-wheeler. I hadn't been home in a while, so it was nice to grab a little extra time with my grandparents before the chaos of the holiday hit.

Pretty much all we did from Tuesday evening to Saturday was hang out and eat. Wednesday we headed to downtown for lunch and little shopping. It's really picturesque, and we stopped in the pocket park for a picture. The pocket park is a break in the buildings that was created after a fire ruined a store there. The city has created a really neat spot for all sorts of events: Santa pics, choir performances, you name it. I couldn't get the kids to look at the camera, but they were being so sweet to one another.

Thursday was a huge food fest. We were missing one person from my mom's side of the family. My cousin was working, and I was missing him because he's getting married this summer. I wanted to pump him for info. I'm excited for the wedding but also excited for another girl in the family! Until I was 20, I was the only granddaughter on that side.

The kids didn't nap that day, which was so crazy. Annabelle finally passed out in my arms around 5. Celebration, indeed. I couldn't believe it when they went to bed late after no naps and woke up at the exact same time as they always do. Friday included an extended nap.

The rest of the weekend, Mr. G woke up at 4 AM to duck hunt, and the kids and I stayed back at my parents in our pajamas as long as we could. Any black Friday shopping I did happened from the couch. Saturday was a special celebration for my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary, so I'll post about that later this week.

It was a great weekend in my hometown, and I was thankful to see so much of my family.

I hope you were well and had safe holiday travels this past week!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Gifts for Moms on the Go

Gifts for Moms on the Go

Here are a few practical and fashionable items for the busy mom or really any busy lady on the go! Clockwise from the top:

Lands' End Vest $25
She's running late, but this is perfect to throw on over her yoga clothes to provide a pocket for keys and phone during preschool drop off. Add a big monogram on the back to make it something special. Great price point.

iPhone backup battery $38
So she'll never miss that perfect photo moment of the kids being sweet to one another in the park at the end of the day when her battery's drained to less than 10%.

Kendra Scott Tessa studs in Ivory Pearl $50
She likes cute earrings, but she's still scared the baby will yank the dangling ones out of her ears. These are a perfect compromise.

C. Wonder Dotty Signature Tote $88
This comes in several cute patterns and is big enough to hold all of her stuff, which is actually everyone else's stuff. Bonus: they'll monogram it for you.

bkr water bottle $30
Because she's always thinking she should drink more water. Why not drink it like Gisele?

Vans snake skin slip-on $55
Perfect to pull her yoga pant-centric outfit together. She doesn't have time for laces anyway.

Lululemon vinyasa scarf $58
Big enough to hide behind, soft enough to use as a blanket, and rumored to even make a great nursing cover. It's warm and cozy, and who doesn't love that?

There are affiliate links in this post. Thanks for reading my blog!

Monday, November 24, 2014


We had an earthquake this weekend!

With that crazy exception, the days were average. I found time to power watch some Gilmore girls and am currently mid-season 3. I need someone to explain why the "girls" in Gilmore girls isn't capitalized.

Is is simply stylization?

Is there a deeper meaning?

Is it capitalized in later seasons symbolizing hopefully Lorelai's maturation?

Have I spent too much time considering this?

Anyway, Friday was Mr. G's off Friday, so we lazed around before I headed out to Pure Barre for an afternoon session. I met a friend at Starbucks that evening and fed my family tacos from Rosa's before settling them in with for Toy Story 2.

Saturday it poured buckets, and Mr. G had to go in to the office. That afternoon, the kids and I loaded up for one of their friend's birthday party. It poured some more. And then, earthquake!

I put the kids to bed around 8:30 and since I was flying solo, climbed into bed around 9 for some Gg, when around 9:15, the floor shook for a brief couple of seconds. I felt the entire wall behind me shiver, and then the headboard vibrated against the wall. It took me a split second to decide that it had to be an earthquake. Immediately I headed to twitter where most news hits first.

Not long after, our local NBC station tweeted that folks were reporting feeling an earthquake in downtown Dallas. Not long after, it was confirmed by the USGS. The epicenter was all the way over in Irving, very close to my former office.

So that's my rather boring earthquake story. I couldn't believe it happened though!

Sunday we spent the day at church, and I headed to a senior violin recital for one of the girls in my Sunday school class. We spent the rest of the evening putting up our Christmas lights. We're ready to flip the switch!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Five on Friday

I'm linking up with the Good Life blog today for another five on Friday.

::ONE:: School Pics are in

He looks more and more like a big kid every day. I can't even begin to tell you how proud I am of him.

::TWO:: Old Navy Plaid Flannels

Annabelle and I were in Old Navy this week unsuccessfully searching for a non-dressy winter coat for her when we came across these really cute women's plaid flannel shirts. They look perfectly cozy and festive for the holidays! In store they had a navy and hunter green that was my favorite of their offerings. Save 20% online only with ONSAVENOW.

Plaid Flannel Shirt $22

::THREE:: Calls to Butterball Turkey on Thanksgiving Day

The Kitchn (it's the cooking offshoot of Apartment Therapy) posted this week about calls to Butterball's hotline on Thanksgiving day. They shared what the most often asked question was. My guess was "how do I tell if this bird is done?!?" but that wasn't it. I didn't even realize Butterball had a hotline, and I don't think I would've ever thought to call it, not that I have a lot of experience cooking on Thanksgiving Day.

::FOUR:: Christmas Pajamas

If you're late getting your kids' Christmas pajamas together, I posted this week about the cute ones my kids will be wearing. Still available, very reasonably priced.

::FIVE:: Fort Worth Moms Blog Guide to Christmas Events

If you live on the west side of DFW, Fort Worth Moms Blog has compiled a list of all sorts of Christmas events. Included are sites to take your kids to visit the big man himself. We're actually considering visiting the Gaylord Ice for the very first time. If you've ever been, what do you think?

There are affiliate links used in this post. Thank you for reading my blog!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Thankful: Easy (Delicious) Teacher Gift

Just like at your house I'm sure, our preschool teachers are high on our list of things we're thankful for. While this may not be the most original idea for a teacher gift, nor is it the most pinterestingly cute thing you may see on the internet, it's sent with a grateful heart from a preschooler (and his mama) who helped pick out treats for some of his favorite ladies.

I like buying from Nothing Bundt Cakes because they're delicious, it's a clever concept/name, and they'll package each cake for the occasion. You can't beat one-stop shopping, and the bundtlets are a great price point. Chocolate chocolate chip is my personal favorite although we tried the white chocolate today, and it came very close to grabbing the top spot. I love a good plain birthday cake flavor, and that's how it tasted.

They have flags for almost every occasion: holiday, thank you, congrats, etc. If you purchase 12 bundlets at once, you receive one for free, the sales girl informed me when I picked these up. One year my manager gave these out to our Team at Christmas. Mine was gone by mid-morning.

A plain little card is included too. I'll write a note of thanks on it and let Jack sign his name. We purchased for his two teachers, the preschool director, and her assistant. They're all so great to us!

You may not have a Nothing Bundt Cakes near you, but you probably have a bakery that bakes up delicious treats. Who doesn't love baked goods?!?

If you're looking for more teacher gift ideas as Christmas is drawing near, I posted at Fort Worth Moms Blog back at the end of school last year on teacher gifts and what teachers really want. I polled a group of teachers in my life and got the scoop! A gift doesn't have to be complicated or expensive to be thoughtful.

This post was not sponsored by Nothing Bundt Cakes. I just love their product!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Christmas Prep: Matching Pajamas

For two years in a row now, I've been late purchasing my kids Christmas pajamas. This means that the cutesy two-piece button-down monogrammed sets requiring pre-order in September are long gone.

Luckily, last year as I was searching for kids' classic Christmas pajamas, I came across this great affordable option by Little Me. If you've been kicking yourself for not ordering earlier too, maybe this will help.

I can't believe how much they've grown in a year.

Girls Ruffle Two Piece | Boys Two Piece

As Macy's runs out of sizes, Belk also carries these as well as a super cute matching gown. I still worry about Annabelle getting cold at night, so I'm not quite ready for the adorable ruffled nightgown. While I love the idea and hope I can keep up the matching cozy pajamas for as long as they'll let me, matching pajamas don't hold a candle to the importance of the coming of the Savior. I'm excited to celebrate this season with my sweeties!

There are affiliate links in this post. Thanks for reading my blog!

Monday, November 17, 2014


We had a super laid back and typical cold weather weekend for us. I say typical cold weather weekend in that we didn't go really anywhere as a family other than church on Sunday, ate lots of warm, hearty food (taco soup!), and built a fire in the evening.

Friday night was Parents Night Out at our church (i.e. inexpensive, great childcare), so we took the opportunity to knock out some of our Christmas shopping. For our kids, we do one big Santa gift and a few other small toys, plus some clothes. During PNO, we picked up one of our Santa gifts and nearly all of the smaller toys. We're about 60% done with all of our Christmas shopping.

All day Saturday we pretty much vegged out. Pure Barre, naps, football, and a fire. I did a little solo shopping and snagged Jack a Gap hoodie for 40% off. They're soft, comfy, and durable, so great for busy little guys. I think he's had one in every size so far.

Sunday we headed to church in a misty, cold rain for Sunday school and worship. In January, Mr. G will start another term as a deacon in our church, and one of our friends was ordained as a new deacon, so we went to the ordination service and reception that evening.

(What I mean by "starting another term": deacons in our church serve for 3 years, then have one year off before their next 3 years of service. Mr. G is just finishing his off year. Southern Baptist churches are autonomous, so not all of them have their deacon service organized in this way.)

During last year's snow/ice storm

As I'm writing this, it's snowing outside, and I'm reminded of the last snowy week we spent wrapped up in our house getting ready for Christmas. While this doesn't appear to be nearly the same degree of storm, it's going to be a cold week.

Bundle up, friends!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Five on Friday

It's been a far from routine week here at the Gentry Casa. Lots of ups and downs, but today I'm focusing on the ups as I link up with the Good Life Blog.

::1:: First Soccer Season: Success

Our guy did awesome in his first soccer season. No tears, listened to the coach, hustled, stayed with the ball. Last Saturday was his team party. I missed it (and apparently so did a lot of people--only 4 families were there) because I was at our church's Pinterest event, but he received his very first trophy!

::2:: Christmas Shopping

I think this is the earliest I've been this far along on my Christmas shopping. Tonight we have a date night planned to get things done. This will mean that on purpose, we will end up in Target shopping for the children, as we happen to do nearly every date night.

How does this always happen?

::3:: More Shopping

Carter's always has great, durable play clothes, and I'm loving their Christmas/Winter line for boys especially this season. I'm hoping to pick up this shirt for Jack over the weekend. It's a perfect Christmas plaid.

Ripstop and Corduroy Vest $19
Flannel Shirt $12

::4:: Thanksgiving Eats

If you're looking to try some new thanksgiving recipes this year, Fort Worth Moms Blog has a couple of posts this week. I posted a no-pecan pecan pie (great if you have any nut allergies in your fam), and my friend Anna posted a couple of her favorites.

::5:: Donuts

We've kicked off our day with sprinkle donuts. It's going to be a good one! Have a great weekend!

Post contains affiliate links. Thank you for reading my blog!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Lululemon Experience Win

A few weeks ago, I saw where my local Lululemon posted on Facebook requesting people send in photos of how they sweat for a contest. Lululemon has a marketing campaign around the hashtag #thesweatlife, which is basically a reference for incorporating exercise (or sweat) for a healthy lifestyle. The winning photo submission would receive a Lululemon experience.

I thought about it for a split second and decided, "why not?" I figured they would just post the winning photo, and that would be that. I had no idea that they would post them on Facebook for voting. When it popped up in my feed, I weighed whether I should share it (posting anything personal on Facebook is a rarity for me) or just pretend it never happened. If my rear was going to be on the internet with giant stripes across them, I decided I might as well attempt to win. So in a cold sweat, I embarrassingly hit the share button.

I had no idea what a Lululemon experience was, but I was hoping it would include a least a free pair of pants. I practically live in wunder unders most of the week.

yikes! stripes!

The next Saturday morning, Lululemon FW posted that I did, indeed, win. I ran by Sunday afternoon to pick up my prize package which consisted of class passes to some local studios/gyms and a pick of something from the store. I ended up with a great pair of Aggie maroon crops I'd had my eye on. You can't see in the pic, but there are cute textured dots all over them to give 'em a little something extra and a really thick waistband to help a mama out.

Astro Wunder Under crop

Thank you again for voting for me. You're the best!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Shopping for Slip-On Sneakers

I briefly glossed over yesterday that we did a little shopping last weekend with the whole fam. I finally had a blow out in the toe of my favorite burlap "Thomases" (what my little guy calls Toms shoes). Besides that, I spend more time than I probably should in leggings since they are the most comfortable for playing with my kids. I keep dressing them down with tennis shoes, but it's easy to create a pulled together look too, with just the right shoe.

Lately there are slip-ons everywhere. From Target, to Gap, to high-end brands. For example, the image below of leggings with slip-ons. Oh that I had looked so effortless, whilst schlepping my toddler through the rain to vote yesterday.

Slip Ons for Moms

Clockwise from top:
Black Quilted || Grey Snake || Leopard || Maroon Sateen || Black Perforated

Vans Metallic Slip-Ons

I ended up with the metallic Vans above. Up until a month ago, if you had told me I would own a pair of Vans ever in my life, I probably would've laughed. Mr. G asked if he could call me Avril.

While I was trying on shoes, one of the kids tripped with a styrofoam cup which fell to the ground and sprung a leak. In a ridiculous turn of events, my first instinct was to kick off the shoes so as not to be confused with a shoplifter and sprint from the store with the leaking cup to the nearest trashcan, minimizing the mess.

Added to my list of humbling motherhood moments is running through the mall in my socks with a leaking Sprite while I blamed myself for being distracted by shiny things. I don't let them walk around with drinks. They have to be kept in the stroller. For this reason!

I apologized profusely and offered to mop the store floor. Then I bought the shoes and left in a hurry.

Shopping with preschoolers is never boring!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Halloween Weekending

Friday morning I kicked off Halloween with a 6 am special edition of Pure Barre: Glow in the Dark. I almost slept in, but the prospect of glow in the dark got me up. It was so much fun! Everyone wore white or neon colors, and PB handed out glow necklaces and bracelets. I had vertigo pretty much the entire first 20 minutes of class due to the black lights. #oldladystatus

The kids kicked off their morning with Halloween sprinkle donuts. I mean, why not get the sugar rush started early? They were fresh out of the fryer too. So much for that Pure Barre class.

After really great naps and frito pie for supper (I promise I fed them a healthy lunch as an interlude to the junk), we headed out to trick or treat. Fall weather finally rolled in, so it was slightly cold and a bit windy. And of course, that turned into runny noses the next day. The kids had so much fun though, so they would say it was worth it. Trick or treating really cemented Annabelle's proper usage of "thank you!" She loved keeping up with her brother, and he loved filling up his candy bucket.

We had a lazy morning and headed to our little friend Chara's birthday party that afternoon. She turned one, and her mom had a precious hot air balloon themed party for her. We did a little shopping later that night, which is always a touch and go situation when we're all out shopping together. I'll be telling that story tomorrow.

Sunday we had church and a great afternoon of napping. Time change has seriously messed with the sleep schedule of one little boy residing in this house. He has always been a great sleeper since like, day 5, so I'm a little baffled that this one hour change has thrown him off. I know it'll work itself out eventually. These things always do, however, yesterday he was awake at 5:45 am, and today it was 5:30. That's ANTE MERIDIEM, as in AM.

I should note: I'd given myself off a couple of mornings to sleep in instead of going to Pure Barre as a 20 in 30 reward. Joke's on me.

If you need me, I'll be drinking more diet coke.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Five on Friday: The Random Edition

This Friday I'm linking up with the Good Life Blog and the rest of her Five on Friday crew for a list of five things that are on my mind this week. I've got a whole lot of random going on.

::1:: Gilmore Girls
For years I've heard people talk about the Gilmore Girls, a show that originated right smack in the middle of my college years, the year 2000. I didn't watch much TV in college, not to sound like some sanctimonious academic, but just because I was busy with other things which occasionally included studying. Well, they're now on Netflix, so I've been working my way through them. I'm part way through season 2. I feel kinda meh about the whole thing but just cannot avert my eyes. What are you doing to me Gilmore Girls? Sidenote: I only watch when I'm ironing. We currently have a lot of nicely pressed clothes in our closets.

::2:: Kate Spade for Gap Kids
Kate Spade and Gap Kids have a cute collaboration that came out yesterday. I can't justify spending over $100 on a toddler coat, but gosh, that bow is adorable. Some items are already sold out, so shop quickly.

bow dress
bow coat

::3:: Big Little Lies

I flew through Big Little Lies a couple of weeks ago. The Moriarty books I've read so far seem quite a bit like a soap opera, completely with twisted relationships, somewhat outlandish happenings, from the viewpoint of someone in my stage of life: raising kids, some working, some SAH moms. BLL is a comedic thriller, if a book can be such. It held my attention well, and I was captivated to the point of not skipping to the end for a spoiler. (That rarely happens for me.) It reads like a movie, and in fact, Nicole and Reese have optioned the rights.

::4:: Pure Barre OcTUCKber Challenge

I finished the Pure Barre 20 in 30 challenge on Wednesday of this week! I think last year I was done by the 22nd. This year it took until the 29th. I'm still pleased that I got it done and am hoping to keep up the same record for November since the big eating holidays are upon us.

::5:: True Confession

I bought candy to pass out to trick or treaters on Monday during my weekly grocery store trip. I should've waited to buy candy on Thursday night, because that's where I was last night at 9 PM after we finished off Monday's stash. Good thing I've been doing the Pure Barre hustle.

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

It's a Pumpkin Party!

Tuesday night we had a pumpkin party! My grandmother had given the kids a pumpkin and told them they could carve it into a jack-o'-lantern with their parents. So, thanks for that, Grannie!

All joking aside, it was a great family activity (I know, groundbreaking information here on an activity people have been doing forever), and it made the kids super happy. I loved that all I had to do was trace the face on and find a candle, while Mr. G took care of the actual carving. I was the kid in elementary school who didn't even like to get glue on her fingers, so pumpkin guts are not necessarily my bag, although I was willing for these kiddos.

To make it a little more festive, I stopped by Bluebonnet Bakery and grabbed some Halloween goodies. They've been drinking out of those cute jack-o'-lantern cups for the past couple of weeks. A Target impulse buy--you understand. Same with the $1 pumpkin napkins.

After they got restless during the pumpkin carving, I turned on It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Even if the kids don't remember it, Mr. G and I made a great memory with them. And now, we've got an awesome jack-o'-lantern for our porch Friday night!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


It's halfway through the week, so why not recap the weekend?

My Fighter Pilot and Little Red Riding Hood

Friday, the kids and I kicked off our weeklong Halloween celebration with Boo at the Zoo at the Fort Worth Zoo. It was a gorgeous morning to be outside, and I thought everything was so well run this year. We arrived right at 10, parked fairly close, and there was no line to pick up our Boo at the Zoo candy tickets. (Last year was a different scene.) We made our usual circuit and stopped by for a fun craft and some trick or treating. Annabelle caught on to trick or treating quickly and continues to say it to me throughout the day, expecting candy. I'm excited for Halloween night!

the craft pavilion
trick or treating

That evening, we left the kiddos in the capable hands of their grandparents and had a date night. We did some shopping: new jeans for him, new coat (browsing) for me.

Saturday we had no soccer, so I spent the morning at Pure Barre and running kid-free errands around town while they were still in grandparent hands. Then I took a great nap on the couch! We rounded out the day with Mexican food with my parents at suppertime.

We had church Sunday morning where I was busy with Pinterest ticket sales. That's coming up on November 8th! And Sunday afternoon, I made my way to Lululemon to claim my Lululemon Experience prize pack. Yes! I won the contest thanks to your voting, so thank you very much! I'm posting the details next week.

Enjoy the rest of your week!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

State Fair of Texas 2014

A few weeks ago I posted about the State Fair over at Fort Worth Moms Blog, and in doing so, it prompted my husband and I to load up the kids for a mid-week trip.

I didn't grow up going to the fair each year, and who knows if we'll go every year with the kids, but it's fun for now. We went on Wednesday, which was the canned food drive day. With 3 canned goods, you got in for $3 a piece.

The highlight of the trip for Jack was the Children's Barnyard. Annabelle was pretty "meh" about the whole thing. I don't think we'll be signing her up for 4-H anytime soon.

The best part for me was the food. We had the fried gulf shrimp boil along with a Fletcher's corn dog. Our past two visits, we've eaten a funnel cake right before we left for the day. I'm documenting it here for longevity's sake to say that we need to eat that earlier in the day. With the temperatures soaring into the mid-90s, it was too hot at 2 PM to properly enjoy a funnel cake. Speaking of which: Dallas, it's too hot for scarves at the State Fair. You look darling, but your makeup is running. (Mine was also running--even without a scarf!)

So far I haven't brought out my scarves. I'm sweating just thinking about it. Are you an early scarf-wearer?

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Weekending & and a Request!

I'm looking forward to this week to rest up from the weekend!

Friday evening, my in-laws came into town to overnight and watch our little guy's soccer game. He had team pictures beforehand, which meant loading everyone up and getting there about 45 minutes before the game began. I don't know about your house, but when we have to be somewhere on Saturday, every single minute is precious. It always feels rushed, even when we know we got up in plenty of time. Such a weird phenomenon. The same thing happens on Sundays too.

After pics, the game, and lunch at Cracker Barrel, Mr. G's parents headed back home. We ran home and put the kids down for naps. I had my fingers crossed that they would sleep really well since we had family photos that evening. All I wanted was one good shot of the two of them at least looking pleasant. According to the sneak our photog sent, we got at least one great one. Early Merry Christmas to me!

Seeing as we had bribed them with any number of things for success, we finally landed on pizza and snow cones after we were finished. Family photos are in the books.

Sunday was also a busy day. We were up early to help set up a breakfast in the student ministry for our Associate Student Minister (and friend!) who has been called to another church as their Student Pastor. We are excited for him and his wife, but sad for us. That's life in a Baptist seminary town. We have a steady rotation of amazing people with great hearts for the Lord and vision for His work, and then they move on to where God calls them. We wouldn't have it any other way, but it's bittersweet. We especially love the Morrows.

But now it's Monday, and I need your help. Lululemon Fort Worth is hosting a contest to win a Lululemon Experience, and I'm in the running. Would you help me win? I need your vote!

There are two steps for your vote to count.
You must like my pic PLUS like their page for the vote to count. The contest runs through this coming Friday at 11:59 PM.

Please vote for me! You're the best!

Friday, October 10, 2014

The Return of the Five on Friday

I'm linking up today with The Good Life Blog for Five on Friday!

My husband has been out of town since Monday morning. Thankfully, I've had a little help and a little adult conversation throughout the week to get me to 10 PM last night when he finally arrived safely back home. I'm so tired of hearing my own voice correcting, re-tucking children back into bed, deciding how many bites must be eaten before the meal is over, and on and on. I need my guy, and these babies need their dad!

Lacking a transition, let's dive into my five.

::1:: The Husband's Secret
While we were on our road trip last week, I read Liane Moriarty's The Husband's Secret (synopsis here). I thought it got off to a long, boring start, and I skimmed several pages until it got good. Even the rule follower in me was like: "Yes, girl, amen. Skip those pages and get on with this." I thought it was entertaining, but not as good as What Alice Forgot. Today I'll download Big Little Lies for free from the Fort Worth Library Digital Library. Thanks, tax dollars!

::2:: Scandal Collection at The Limited
I tried on The Limited's Scandal/Olivia Pope collection a couple of weeks ago. This coat is beautiful, but I think it's a bit overpriced for the quality. The one I tried on already had a run in the collar. The salesgirl blew it off as someone's wedding ring probably snagged it. I didn't think that was a good sales tactic. You should check it out if you're a fan of the show. I couldn't remember the last time I'd been in The Limited, and this was a great way to get me back in there. Well played, The Limited.

::3:: Pure Barre OcTUCKber Challenge
Right now I'm participating in a 20 in 30 day challenge at Pure Barre. If you go 20 times in the month of October, you qualify for some sort of prize or class package discount. The tuck in "OcTUCKber" refers to a neutral spine position in PB vernacular. There are sticker charts at Pure Barre to track our attendance. When you're there, you put a gold star by your name. It's motivating for 3 year olds, as well as 30+ year olds.

::4:: In Search of the Great Pumpkin
I really want to take the kids to a pumpkin patch this year, but this weather! It was in the high 90s on Tuesday. Fort Worth Moms Blog has a great round up of pumpkin fun for your family if you live in this area.

::5:: Early Christmas Shopping
I've bought 3 Christmas gifts already, and it's only October 10th. This has never happened before in my life. It feels a little strange, like I should be picking out Christmas wrapping paper or something. I'm afraid I'll put them somewhere, then forget about them. The most likely scenario is that I'll remember them, but not where I put them.

I hope you have a great weekend!

Monday, October 6, 2014


This past weekend, after soccer practice on Friday and a game Saturday morning, we headed west to my cousin's wedding in Christoval. It's a small, small town right outside of San Angelo, which is where we overnighted.

God provided them with a stunning Lone Star State evening. The weather was perfection for an outdoor wedding. The ceremony and reception were tucked under some tall trees by a small river, there were plenty of "Christmas lights" as Jack called them, the BBQ was great, and I even got a turn about the dance floor with both of my babies.

This was probably our 5th or 6th road trip since Annabelle was born. Both of our kids are fairly flexible, although sister has to be very, very tired to fall asleep in her carseat. She and I shared a bed, but really, it's incredible how much territory such a small person can take up in a queen bed. We had the pack 'n play. Next time she'll be sleeping in it.

We had a fairly uneventful ride home. On our way, we passed through a couple of those crazy looking west Texas wind farms. It feels like you're on a completely different planet.

The weekend came to a crashing end Sunday evening when my little guy took a tumble backwards into the coffee table and bumped his head. I called our neighbors (they are both nurses) for triage, and it was determined that he would need staples or stitches. After trying to decide between ER or urgent care, Jack and I jumped in the car and headed to a new pediatric urgent care clinic where we were seen immediately and given 5 staples, along with a light-up spinning prize thing, some apple juice, a sticker, and a sucker. (Those last 4 are the things he remembers most about the incident.) He was such a trooper, bless his poor heart. He woke this morning like nothing had happened. His resilience is amazing.

We spent the rest of the night trying to bring it back down a notch to normal around our home. Maybe by Friday we'll find whatever our normal is.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday Shopping: Lands' End Friends & Family 2014

I was thumbing through a stack of catalogs that hadn't made it into the recycle bin yet and came across Lands' End for fall. I mentioned it back during swim season, but I've been loving what Lands' End has produced over the past year. High quality and with the perfect amount of trend in classic silhouettes.

The Lands' End Friends and Family sale is under way right now with 25% off, so it's a perfect time to add some new fall pieces to the closet.

Lands' End Fall 2014

Clockwise from top left:
Textured Top | Print Sweater | Boiled Wool Jacket | Basketweave Wool Toggle Coat
Large Canvas Tote
| Harris Suede Booties | Fit 2 Midrise Jeans

Sweaters: I'm planning on swinging through my local Sears to see if the Lands' End store there has these. I think I would wear them a bunch but want to see them in person.

Coats: I love the boiled wool jacket. So many colors! It's lightweight, but probably good for the majority of the Texas winter. If you check reviews on the beautiful pink basketweave coat, sadly, you'll see that the button detail seems a little cheap, but doesn't it look pretty from here?

Booties: They have great reviews and look similar to other much more expensive brands for the fall.

Jeans: I actually tried these on about a month ago and loved them. I didn't love them enough to buy them when it was 102 degrees. However, now that it's getting cooler, they are a great weight with just enough stretch to help a sister out, but not enough that they will bag out on you, if you know what I mean. The whiskering is done well, and at 25% off, that is a great price for good denim.

Canvas tote: I'm already Christmas shopping, so catching this at 25% is fab! The large is the perfect size for travel. I've used one as my carry on for years. No matter what you shove in there, it doesn't tip over, and it has lots of pockets.

This post is not sponsored, but there are affiliate links. It's just me over here shopping!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Kendra Scott Takes Cowtown

Moms all over Cowtown were clutching their pearls last year when we heard the best located Barnes and Noble for story time and a lunch date was closing. Then, to add insult to injury, they closed the yogurt place to move Starbucks. Can you even imagine the first world outrage?

Rumors began circulating about who the new tenant would be and finally it was made official when Kendra Scott announced on their social media channels they would be opening their newest store right smack-dab where B&N used to be. I quickly decided I could find another story time if it means shopping fellow Texan Kendra Scott's jewels right here in town.

So two weeks ago I had a blast popping by the Kendra Scott grand opening with my friend and PB instructor, Alexandra. We both agreed Kendra was so gorgeous and friendly as she graciously greeted each person who approached her (in the high, late summer heat). It was such a fun party! With the store decked out in KS signature yellow and the shop girls outfitted in yellow dresses with turquoise KS jewelry, it was probably the happiest store I've ever been in.

(That's saying a lot because I spend quite a bit of time in the Disney Store with these preschoolers of mine.)

While we were there, we also met Sam, of Style of Sam, a local fashion blogger who I had learned of when she was featured on Fort Worth Moms Blog. Such a great night of shopping and fun. I've been back a couple of times already, and Annabelle has already had her first Kendra Scott store experience.

She actually cried when we left. That's my girl.
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