Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February Break 2017 - Park 2

Our last day in Virginia was Tuesday, and since my mom was back to work, we kind of just puttered around their small town. We did some browsing on their Main Street, then hit up Chili's for some lunch. Ella was very excited to show off her new Beauty & the Beast shirt to everyone :) 

We played outside a little bit more, then Gramps made everyone a delicious dinner! After dinner, I went downstairs to do some cardio & Ella wanted to join me. She laid down in her teepee, watched some Elena, and next thing I knew, she was out cold. This was great - except we were in the basement & I needed to carry her up to bed on the second floor! 

We were up & on the road to New York by 6:45 on Wednesday morning. I'm so glad we got an early start because we had to make a lot more stops on the way home than on the way there. Our first stop was at Cracker Barrel for a real breakfast & even though it took an hour, it was worth it! I just love me some Cracker Barrel! We made it to Grammy Nancy's house by 2:30, then played there for an hour or so, then hit the road for the final stretch back to Rochester to see Daddy! 

We started with an early practice Thursday morning, did a few errands, grabbed lunch & found a park to play in! It was the last day of projected nice weather, so we made the most of it! Spring jackets in February is unheard of in NY, so you really have to embrace it! 

We stopped for some ice cream at Sonic, then came home for naps. After Ella woke up, we tackled some clearance crafts! She is SO into these little projects lately :) 

The rest of Thursday was spent at the playground in the sunshine! Unfortunately, we woke up to a monsoon on Friday morning. So, we went off to what would be our last practice of the season. 

After practice, we met up with Aunt Britt & Maddy to eat some lunch and go to the mall. We had GapCash to spend & wanted to do something despite the rain - so it was the perfect option! 

Saturday was all about Sectionals. Sadly, we did not win. It was a heartbreaking day, because they've had an absolutely amazing season. I didn't want them to finish it out this way, but I was proud of them for pushing through. 

We ended up taking 4th, which is really an honor considering there were many teams without falls that didn't place at all. The coaches went out to eat our feelings afterwards & of course, we're just crazy enough to be planning our comeback for next year. 

On Sunday, we laid low all day. Eric & I took turns going to the gym, then my sister's family came over for some Sunday sauce. It was the perfect low key ending to our break. And just like that... I'm back to work, out of season for cheer, and already counting down the days until Spring Break rolls around! 
Monday, February 27, 2017

February Break Recap 2017 - Part 1

This winter break has been one for the books! I'm talking I fell asleep on the couch at 7:45 last night, just because it's been so darn busy & fun! So even though I should probably be prepping lessons right now, I just had to share our adventures with you all :) 

As soon as my students got on the bus last Friday, I hopped in the minivan with Ella! We scooped up Livy & then drove about an hour to pick up Grammy Nancy (Eric's mom) who accompanied us on our trip. I cannot say how enormously helpful it was to have Nancy with me on this trip! She really is like another mother to me (I've dated Eric since I was 17) and we're very close, plus she's one of the most helpful people I know. So... we hit the road, stopping at Sheetz for a quick road trip dinner, then we powered straight through to my parents house in Virginia! It's about an 8 hour trip, so we arrived just before midnight. The girls were awesome on the way down - sleeping most of the way - and I was grateful to have Nancy keeping me awake after a long week at school. 

Saturday morning we woke up & it was gorgeous in Virigina! Actually, it was gorgeous our entire trip! Sunny & 70 in February is something I can get used to. We hit the road to Fredericksburg & did a bunch of errands with my mom. Both girls were very excited to be wearing their new spring jackets & I was even wearing sandals!! 

We ate lunch at Chick-fil-a, my absolute favorite, and we basically cleaned out the entire Cat & Jack section at Target. Seriously, their kids line is so cheap & so adorable! I will be sharing some of our favorite finds later in the week because they are precious - and over that weekend they were 25% off! We came home that afternoon & I got to go walking with my mom outside while the girls played. I think everyone was asleep by 8 though because of the fresh air & our late night the night before! 

The next day, we were up & at em to head to the park! It was the most beautiful of all the days & we had a blast playing outside! 

I spent a large chunk of my afternoon sitting outside in the sunshine and it was glorious! Ella was loving it too,... until I made her put on sunscreen. After naps, we headed off to another park to play some more. This time my dad was with us, which is Ella's favorite, so she was in heaven. 

So while Sunday was probably Ella's favorite day of the trip, Monday was my favorite! I had everyone bathed & set to head out bright and early so that we could hit Tysons Corner Center as soon as it opened! 

Tysons is one of my favorite malls because it has so many of our favorite stores that we just don't have in Rochester - The Disney Store, American Girl, and Nordstrom! 

Ella did some shopping for her Bitty Baby & picked out a new outfit for her :) She probably could have picked out at least 10 outfits, but she ended up settling on some cute little kitty pajamas. I think it was the slippers that sold her. 

After American Girl we did a whole lot of shopping, followed by lunch at Shake Shack, and then more shopping! We were VERY fortunate that the girls both took awesome naps that afternoon & we were able to shop in peace for a few hours. I ended up finding some great stuff from Nordstrom's sale & surprisingly enough, bought some really cute stuff from Forever 21's clearance that literally totaled less than $10! At the end of the day... Ella was happy, but ready to head back to Grammy's. 

And even though I intended to write this all in one post, it's getting WAY too long, so I'll be back tomorrow with the rest of our break! Happy Monday everyone! 

Friday, February 10, 2017

Friday Favorites

I am writing on a huge high this morning! My favorite favorite favorite of this week was last night when we took back our County Championship!! 

Last night was cut throat. The competition just keeps getting tougher & tougher, but these girls were AMAZING! I was so impressed by their performance. I can't wait to see them perform again on Saturday, and then at Sectionals when we take back our brick! Ahh... I'm still buzzing this morning because I'm so proud of them. Tonight is Senior Night, so I'm sure that I'll be a blubbering mess watching my babies cheer their last game. 

Onto my other favorites of the week... Ella's afternoon sitter - Emilie - sent me this Snap on Wednesday of their little coffee date after school. She said the first thing out of Ella's mouth was - "Can we go to Tim Horton's?" and Emilie just couldn't say no to that face! 

On Monday night, Ella started her Tumble Tots class! She was so excited. She decided to wear an outfit just like the cheerleaders do to practice. She looks SO big in this picture. I couldn't help but feel proud as I was watching her. She listened to directions, stood in line patiently, and worked really hard whenever it was her turn. Love my Ella! 

And bedtime has been another favorite this week. Seriously, I'm just so tired! I always feel this way going into Winter Break though, so I'm not shocked. I'm certainly ready for a week off though. Only 7 days to go & I'll be off to Virginia! 

And my last but not least - I got to spend some time with Madigan this week! I adore my niece & just love cuddling her! She's wearing a onesie that I bought her - perfect for Valentine's Day & her coffee drinking mama :) 

Have a Happy Friday Everyone! 

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Book Review - January 2017

I'm excited to share these books with you because January has been a VERY good reading month for me! I absolutely loved all three of these books - even though they're all quite different from one another. Two were from new to me authors, and one is a book that I've been dying to get my hands on for almost a year. I had such a good time putting this together that I've already made a trip to the library to pick up books for February! 

Everything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale was probably one of the best books I've ever read. I started it after school one rainy afternoon when I didn't have practice & ended up until 12:30 because I just couldn't put it down. I had to find out what happened. The main character, Aimee, has to bury her fiance on what should've been her wedding day. As if that's not tragic enough, a lady approaches her in the parking lot after the funeral telling her that he's still alive. While she knows that it's completely farfetched, it plants a seed of doubt in Aimee's mind that fuels her quest - both for answers and to rebuild her own life - over the next two years. The book reminded me of a cross between Big Little Lies & What Alice Forgot - two of my favorite books, so if you loved those, I'm confident that you'll love this too! And if you don't want to take my word for it, know that I stumbled upon it because it was one of Amazon's Best Books of 2016 :)

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The next book I read this month was also suspenseful, but is definitely a mystery and not a romance. Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith centers around the delivery of a severed leg... so yeah, no romance. If you don't know, Robert Galbraith is actually J.K. Rowling's pen name for the Cormoran Strike series. I have read both of the other books - Cuckoo's Calling & The Silkworm - and enjoyed them both, so I was really looking forward to this book. It is LONG - like 500 pages - and there's a lot of information to digest, but the mystery that unfolds is worth it! 

Silver Girl: A Novel by [Hilderbrand, Elin]

The last book I read this month was Silver Girl by Elin Hildebrand. This is the first Hildebrand book that I've read, but I know so many people who adore her novels. I have to say - I'm with them! Silver Girl is about two women - Merideth and Connie - who are both trying to rebuild their lives after catastrophic events. It's set on the adorable island of Nantucket, and I have to say, I'm already planning a little trip to visit just because it sounds so picturesque! 

If you've read any of these books & have thoughts to share - please do! Any suggestions for next month, let me know! I have a whole week off & know that I'll spend a good portion of it snuggled under a blanket while the girls play - so give me all you got! 
Wednesday, February 1, 2017

What's Up Wednesday - January 2017


What We're Eating This Week...

I have zero pictures of the food I've eaten lately, just know it hasn't been healthy. #resolutionsoutthewindow  In fact, Eric made the most delicious wings in our skillet the other night. I have no idea how many I ate, and it's probably better that way. Last night, I ordered pizza. Tonight, we may eat chicken nuggets. #thetruthaintprettypeople 

What I'm Reminiscing About...

This time of year always has me reminiscing about my past teams & all that they accomplished. I just love when our alumni visit us & seeing those girls turn into successful adults is one of the best parts of my job! 

What We've Been Up To...

Between our insane schedules and sickness, we've managed to have a whole lot of fun lately! We visited the Strong Museum of Play - which is one of our favorite winter activities! Olivia is old enough to fully enjoy it now, so it was a lot of fun to see them both running around & exploring. 

Ella also had her Snowflake Tortilla Celebration at school & loved that her daddy could attend! I thought it was so cute that they cute the store bought tortillas into snowflakes, then warmed them & sprinkled powdered sugar on them! Such a cute idea! 

What I'm Dreading...

We still have a full month or more of full fledged winter around here. It hasn't been too bad thus far, but I just have a feeling that some serious snow may be in my future. 

What I'm Working On...

I've been working on a lot of fun collaborations for the blog that I'm really excited to share with you! I'm also starting a trial of The Daily Burn, which I'm excited/nervous about. My sister has been doing it & really likes it, so hopefully I will too. Between the weather & very little free time, I need something that I can do at home after the kids go to bed. Hopefully it'll whip me into shape! 

What I'm Reading...

I'm doing my full January Book Review tomorrow, but I just finished Career of Evil by Robert Gailbrath (who is really JK Rowling) and have a lot to say about it! 

What I'm Watching...

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Scandal is back! That is what I've been most excited about. But Quantico is back & is now right after The Bachelor, so those both make me happy too! Early January was super slow for TV viewing, so I'm happy to have some options again. 

What I'm Wearing...

It's winter in New York, so I've been wearing a lot of boots & cardigans. My classroom is extremely unpredictable too, so I dress in layers every day. #beprepared 

What I'm Doing This Weekend...

Another competition for me this weekend. The girls will be with Eric's mom for the weekend. They're going to see Peter Pan & Ella is very excited about it. Eric will be out of town at Winterfest with his friends too. So it'll just be me & Charlie for the weekend. I'm having dinner with one of my best friends Friday night too, so I can't wait for that! 

What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month...

Winter Break! T-minus 16 days until I'm on the road to Virginia with the girls to see Grammy & Gramps! There is A LOT going on between now & then now... 3 more cheer competitions, a benefit I'm helping serve at, Valentine's Day, a field trip, and multiple gymnastics classes. It's in sight though! 

Bonus Question: Who is Your Favorite Bachelor? 

So this was a hard question for me, because I tend to LOVE people when they're on a season as a contestant, but then they usually disappoint me when they become the actual Bachelor/Bachelorette.  For instance, I really liked Chris Soules when he was on Andi's season, but then thought he was a little too hokey when he was on his own season. I can tell you one thing though, hands down, my favorite Bachelorette is Jillian Harris. I adore her & read her blog daily.  

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