May and then June

May // Andrew + Caroline

Looking back over the last two or three years, the blog always goes pretty silent this time of year.

It must be the weather. I’m trying to soak up every last day of warm, comfortable temperatures before the blazing heat rolls in. This time of year also brings the end of school craziness and laziness and I just want to sit on the back patio with a glass of cool white wine and watch the kiddos run around and not hurt each other.

Caroline // May

Well, now that it’s June it’s hotter than hot outside, and I don’t want to go out there for even a minute. So I guess I can come back to the blog. Ha!

What have we been up to?

Andrew graduated from Pre-K and I held back tears for days. I’m just so very proud of him. It sure is a good thing Caroline is still at our little school because otherwise I would have been a sad, sad mama.

These are their last day of school photos.

I LOVE them. The kids and the photos.

May // Andrew

I’ve been really lousy at picking up the camera since I bailed on my 365 Project, but these photos reminded me of why I started in the first place. (I may get back to it after this little break.)

May // Caroline

Here’s a bold statement:

I’ve decided that this is the summer I’m going to teach myself to cook.

Which means I’m spending hours and hours in the kitchen. I’ve been really motivated lately to feed myself and my family wholesome, nutrient filled foods rather than so much of the junk that is readily available to us these days. While it’s a whole lot easier to pop some Tyson chicken nuggets in the oven than it is to dice up my own chicken, dredge it in whole wheat breadcrumbs and olive oil and bake it, I know exactly what I’m cooking when I do that. And it’s delicious!

I’ve found that the key to the cooking is planning (and confidence, but I think that takes time). I’m becoming a meal planner! Finally, after all this time I think it’s going to stick.

I’m also keeping real stock of what’s in my refrigerator. All this produce and meat really eats up the budget, and I’ve been much better than I used to be about making sure we actually eat the foods we buy.

But I have to be realistic too. I’m not going to cook gourmet, healthy meals seven nights a week even as much fun as I’m having learning new recipes. So I’m cutting myself some slack and penciling in one day for leftovers and one day for takeout. I can’t go overboard and burnout!

Also my kids are still picky-ish, especially Caroline, and they just flat out refuse to eat so many things. I can’t get too fancy around here! Ha!

I’ve been inspired by lots of lovely ladies to clean up our meals and do more cooking at home. Instigram is full of foodie accounts, but I really enjoy Andrea at @GwynethMadeMeDoIt. She’s so real and cooks for her family, and isn’t super restrictive or preachy. She just cooks good, healthy foods and encourages us along the way. I also get lots of great tidbits from Madeline at @MadelineNutrition. She’s a certified nutrition consultant and shares helpful tips and recipes on all kinds of products and foods.

So if I’m not around here, you can probably find me in my kitchen, dicing and chopping and sauteing and making vegetables taste really, really good. :)

Caroline // May

Odds & Ends // 03

Odd & Ends // 03

Favorite Preschool Project Yet

It’s been a week. Being out of town last weekend left me feeling like I had so much to catch up on over the following days. But we made it. It’s Friday! And we’re headed to the Mavs playoff game against the Spurs tonight and I’m just praying really hard that we can force a game 7 against the #1 seed.

During game 5 I looked and Brian and said, “Why do I love this game? It just stresses me out!” but I do, and I’ll keep watching and cheering.

1. I realized yesterday that Brian and I were engaged 10 years ago Wednesday. TEN years! That means our anniversary is coming up this fall. This post from Shauna Niequist on marriage as our love story is just awesome. “We’re living a love-story, not running a small business together.” Our minister recently did a marriage sermon series and he really stressed this as well. 

2. “The powerful difference between organizing and decluttering”. I’ve read Tsh’s book, Organized Simplicity and loved it. It spurned a months-long decluttering project at our house. This article was a nice reminder that it’s an ongoing process.

3. Pretty sure I have to add these girl and boy sandwich stampers to my next BentoUSA order.

4. I recently found Robin Long’s Pilates blog, The Balanced Life, and I’m loving it. Her videos are short and easy to follow. She’s offering a summer Pilates series starting in May and I’m hoping to participate. Any other takers?? :)

FIVE ON FRIDAY

ONE. We’re all about the Frozen radio station on iTunes Radio right now. Andrew can name the movie for just about every Disney song ever written, I’m sure of it. We have music on all the time at the house and it’s nice to know Blurred Lines isn’t going to come up next. Ha!

TWO. I just picked up my flared legged jeans from the tailor. I think I may wear them to the basketball game tonight. I just don’t know if I’m young and trendy enough to pull them off though.

THREE. I’m ready to do some serious decorating in here. If only I had endless funds. Ha! My custom fabric ottomans from Ballard Design should be here in the next few weeks and I’ll finally be able to fill the giant hole between the couches in my living room. Next up is the empty living room wall. My vision is to fill it with new and old framed oil paintings, kind of like this:

Oil Painting Wall

My sister is willing to help which is awesome. She has quite the eye. I’m also planning to spend some time on my mudroom project this weekend. It’s coming right along! I’m excited just to be making some progress. House projects are time consuming and force us to be decisive which can be really hard. The hardest part for me is sourcing stuff. Where do I find pretty old oil paintings and eclectic frames? I think this should be a blog post on its own.

FOUR. I took one of those personality tests this week. I’m an ESTJ. I look the same test years and years ago and I was an ESTJ then too so I guess it’s pretty accurate. “Order, tradition and stability.” Yep, that kinda sounds like me. I find these things fascinating. But I look at the list of famous ESTJ’s and can’t help but think I should be doing more. I’m not really using my ability “to make even the most complex project look like a walk in the park.” Not much complex problem solving going on here these days.

FIVE. My StitchFix box just arrived! I’m off to try on clothes! (Seriously complex problems to solve! Ha!)

Happy happy weekend friends. I hope yours is warm and sunny and FUN!

xoxo

Odds & Ends // 02

Five on Friday // Volume 2

Dress-up Bin Shenanigans

It’s past my new bedtime.

I’m trying SO HARD to go to bed at 10pm every night so I can get up at 6:15. And getting up at 6:15 makes me SO tired that it’s really not hard to get to bed early, but still – life. I wash dishes, put stuff back where it belongs, clean out backpacks, sit for 10 minutes. And then it’s 10pm.

And I’ve got to get to bed so I can do it all again tomorrow. I know y’all can relate 1000%.

1. I thought this challenge from Jill last week was fun. For every awesomely staged beautifully lit kid photo there is a disaster of a kitchen behind them. Really, these Easter photos in our living room? The kitchen looked like a bomb had gone off. Brian said, “let’s move them to the fireplace.” He’s a genius. :)

2. Speaking of Easter, I’m not one to talk about my faith a whole lot, but the power of God’s grace makes my heart happy and so does this post from Jon Acuff.

3. I LOVE hamburgers. Is that bad? If so, I don’t want to be right. These cabernet burgers from Christina at Carolina Charm sound divine. Also, she’s about to have her first baby and name her Caroline and I kind of want to cry over the thought of a newborn baby named Caroline.

FIVE ON FRIDAY

ONE. Brian’s 93 year old grammy passed away this week. The two of us are headed to Massachusetts and Connecticut and Rhode Island for the weekend. (This Texas girl is so laughing at the thought of going to THREE states in a matter of hours.) We’ll miss the kids this weekend, but we’re excited about seeing a big chunk of Brian’s family that we haven’t seen in years. And I’ve never been to the northeast in the springtime. I think it’ll be a nice weekend of celebrating a wonderful, well-lived life!

TWO. Our babysitter is a lifesaver! When we were making arrangements to get to the funeral, I just knew we could count on her to watch the kids for us on Friday and help with the transition to my parents watching them Saturday and Sunday. She jumped in, no questions asked. I am so, so thankful that we have someone we can count on in a pinch.

THREE. I’m reading Setting Limits with your Strong Willed Child thanks to the recommendation from Bethany and I’m really enjoying it. I don’t know that I’m learning many new techniques, but I’m being reminded of how darn important it is to not over-talk with the kiddos’ discipline and that’s something I always need to be reminded of. (I’m a talker. Can you tell? Ha!)

FOUR. I’ve failed at my 365 project and I’m okay with that. I didn’t take any photos this week but our lunch photos. It makes me a little sad, but somehow this project ended up making me less creative rather than what I’d hoped for which was a spark of creativity. I got tired of taking the same photos. And as my friend Jan said, photography should be a joy. I was feeling like it was a chore. I hope I’m ready to get back to it next week though. Speaking of lunches – I have 10 cute new lunches to share on Monday!

FIVE. It’s shorts weather here. I’m not sure how I feel about that. A few summers ago  you couldn’t have paid me to wear shorts and now they’re a summer wardrobe staple. They’re just so easy when you’re running around getting in and out of hot cars. I’ve pinned a few shorts outfits on my style board. Maybe StitchFix will send me some in my next box. Do you wear shorts?

Follow MeaganMusing’s board My Style on Pinterest.

Have a fabulous weekend friends!