Tuesday, July 31, 2012

keeping it local so I don't go loca

Do you ever have one of those days where you realize that you have to completely readjust your schedule, for your own sanity? I had one yesterday when I attempted to drive out to the Reston Town Center 30 minutes away to take Judah to the Mr. Knick Knack show. I arrive late, drove through two parking garages and one outdoor parking area and couldn't find a spot anywhere. So I took Judah across the street to the Barnes and Nobles to play with the train table. He was having a great time until another dad "dropped his son off" at the train table before he left to go browse through some books at the other end of the store. This kid was 3 years old and very mean to Judah, kept screaming at him that the trains were "HIS!" and telling Judah he wasn't saying things right. So after awhile I left, the father saw me leaving the store and ran back to the train table asking where his son was. I said "your son walked away saying I'll be right back". The father wasn't to happy with me and ran back to find his son. I'm sorry your a stranger and a dad to a mean kid, its not my responsibility to watch your kid. So I took Judah home. Last night I was talking to my husband and let him know my nightly mental struggle of what to do the next day with Judah. I want to be able to walk/run with Judah everyday. It puts us both in a great mood and I am able to get a good workout. But I also want to be able to add extra activities to engage Judah before his takes his afternoon nap, I couldn't figure out how to do both and keep it local so I'm not driving all over the place. This morning I woke up and had an idea. Why don't I walk Judah to a park that's 3 miles from our home. 

The trip to the park was mostly uphill, great for my calves especially since I am pushing Judah. Before we headed to the park I stopped by Starbucks for drinks, we hung out at the park for 30 minutes then headed back. I took a different route back home that passed a fire station and construction trucks digging up a road. Judah was in heaven. 

Once we arrived home we managed to walk 5.75 miles! Not only did I get in my work out in but Judah was exhausted from all the fun he had. So I gave him a bubble bath and put him down for a nap. 

After his nap I dressed Judah up in a bow tie from one of my sponsors at The Lavender Lounge, grabbed his monster doll and we headed outside to draw with our chalk before the storm rolled in. 

The thunder kept getting louder and louder outside so we decided it was safer to take our chalk play date inside. Judah decided it would be funny to stand on his chair and sing to me.

My dear sweet Judah, I'll never tire of your cuddles or your silly songs. 
Needless to say, I'm less anxious about hanging out local today than driving across town to see a show that we missed and to be bullied by a three year old and his dad. 

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Saturday, July 28, 2012

method to my madness, thrifting with a toddler.

Today after Judah woke up from his nap I thought "we should stop by Unique!". I'm sure any mom would say "what in the world is she thinking, its Saturday any thrift store is packed and your child is going to have a complete meltdown". But I am going to share you the method to my madness on how to thrift with a toddler. 

Judah was looking extra dapper today in a bow tie from one of my sponsors KBP Designs. When ever I do take Judah out to go thrifting with me I either go early in the morning right when the thrift store opens or I wait till right after his nap. That way I am sure to miss his pre nap crankies. I also make sure he has had a meal before we left the house. 

I always pack lots of snacks. Recently they have been his teething cookies, goldfish, blueberries and I always bring his sippy cup and my water bottle. Sometimes I can distract him by giving him "mamas drink" instead of his sippy cup. The first thing we do when we enter Unique is walk right over to the children's book section. I hand Judah a few board books to look at and I quickly look through the books while he is distracted. Since Judah is a very social little guy he is easily entertained by anyone who will give him attention and since he is wearing a bow tie people tend to walk up to him to talk. He is constantly saying "hi!" or now pointing to his books saying "book". If you plan on thrifting with your toddler know that they are probably going to make noise so you might as well let them talk as loud as they want, its better than screaming right. 

 After the children's book section I walk over to the little boys and girls clothing area, en route I walk down a few aisle and quickly glance at housewares. After I look through the clothing I then walk over the the furniture area to see if anything catches my eye. At this point Judah is probably getting a little antsy so I walk him over to the toy section and let him hold a "truck". I make another walk around Unique before I head over to the cash register. At the cash register Judah always flirts with the cashier, at this point I am able to take away any of the toys that I distracted him with and lay them aside. He never notices me. 

At the end of the trip I have a happy baby and a happy mama. Today I was able to walk around for an hour before Judah started to get antsy. 

One of my favorite finds from today is this vintage cream traveller makeup case. I only paid $4 and its in almost near perfect condition. My mother had one of these when I was little in blue, I remember being able to hold it while we flew over from Europe to the States and have been looking for one for years.

The inside is in perfect condition. I love the old smell it has and the mustard yellow fabric has no tears. Whomever had this before me really took care of it. 

Also I've been on the hunt for a nice sugar jar to put on our kitchen counter top. I found this old Sugar Mason Jar once cleaned it will look really nice in my kitchen. 

I also found a handful of books that I am gifting to some of my blogger moms and this adorable Rhymes and Fingerplays book for Judah. Its filled with cute little rhymes for everything. I really look forward to learning and teaching some to Judah so I can sing with him through out the day. Also I found a record on "The little engine that could". Judah loves to dance and listen to music on our record player and I know this will be a special treat to listen to songs about trains. 

Finally I found a really old Sesame Street vest with Grover on it, a vintage toy telephone for Judah and these cute little Japanese toddler slip on shoes. I love our Unique because we are living in such a diverse area that you never know what neat finds you will score.

Judah normally does pretty well with me when I take him thrifting. I am super aware of his cues and keep an eye out if he is tired, hungry or just really not wanting to be at a thrift store. Once he has a meltdown we are out the door. I think that is why he is typically so good with me because he knows that I will leave if he feels like he can't handle our thrift date and that I will not be upset at him. 

My sponsor wanted to give the readers at My Little Mustache 10% off their order from now till August 11th. Just use the code BLOGGERFIND when you check out. Stop by her store, she has the most adorable bow ties, Judah received so many compliments today while we were thrifting, I believe that is why I was able to thrift for over an hour with him today. 

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Friday, July 27, 2012

judah encouraging his triathlete aunt

My sister Rhonda is my best friend. She daily amazes me with her inner strength and she carries herself better than any woman I know. She has class, poise, is a phenomenal chef and she is kick awesome at working out. Earlier this year my sister told me she is signing up for a triathlon. Honestly I am amazed at how my sister will push and challenge to do better with her workouts. I knew she could tackle this triathlon.

This post is in honor of my sister doing her first ever triathlon tomorrow during the first weekend of the Summer Olympic games. Rhonda, I know you can do this and Judah has a few words he would like to say to you as well.  

Rhonda, Judah is inspired by you and he wanted to be a toddler triathlete.  
Judah says "Auntie Rhonda just keep swimming".

 Auntie Rhonda make sure you stretch before you run.

Auntie Rhonda make sure you go at your own pace, you can do it!

Auntie Rhonda I believe in you. Get on your bike and ride!

Auntie Rhonda you can make it to the end.

Auntie Rhonda before you know it you can say "I did it!"

Rhonda even though we can't be there cheering you at the finish line, know that we will be there in spirit and thinking of you every step of the way. We love you so very much and are so inspired by you. 

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

mama blogger dancing date

I've mentioned this a dozen times in the past and I'll say it again. I am so grateful for the relationships I've made through blogging and IG. Over the past few months I've been able to meet up with a super sweet mama blogger Kendra who blogs over at our little almanac. The first time we met up I honestly felt like we have known each other for years. She is so easy to talk to and her daughter is a month younger than Judah. Since she is local we have been able to meet up a handful of times and today I had her and Evelyn over for a "toddler dance party".  I dressed Judah up for the occasion in the cutest bow tie from one of my sponsors Trista at A Sweetpea Boutique.

Judah and I wrote a welcome note to Kendra and Evelyn on a chalkboard we just thrifted last night. The kids enjoyed coloring and eating the chalk through out the play date. 

Had the record playing with some of Judah's favorite toddler dancing songs. 

Judah and Evelyn got along so well. They played and shared toys, danced, read books and took a mini break to eat some raisins and watch some Yo Gabs. 

These two are just to cute. 

When Scott came home we took Judah to one of Scott's childhood parks. His mom used to take him here all the time when he was Judah's age. 

Judah loved the tire obstacle course.

He thinks he is such a big boy on the big kid swing. Also I love this bow tie from A Sweetpea Boutique. The bow tie fits Judah's neck perfectly and it velcro's in the back. I also love how the bow tie is really big. 

After running around the park for an hour we were ready to go home and cool off in the pool. I honestly think Judah's bow tie makes him look older. I absolutely adore it. 

We finished our day full of fun with a nice bubble bath. 

Be sure to check out Trista's Etsy shop. I truly love each bow tie in her shop and I would love to purchase one for Judah to wear every single day of the week. Her prices are ridiculously cheap for such stellar bow ties so I actually could purchase as many as my heart desires for Judah. 

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

new thrift store with vintage promises

Last week Scott and I were running on empty for several reasons, but the main one was Judah is teething and we barely slept. We needed a break from him badly. Scott's parents must have sensed we needed a break and offered to watch Judah for a few hours on Saturday while we did something fun. We first wanted to wear Judah out a bit to make sure he wasn't screaming the entire time he was at his grandparents. I wanted to make sure they still wanted to babysit in the future. 

It was drizzling outside so we walked him up to Robinson High school and let him walk on the bleachers with us. 

Mr. Independent with his box of raisins. 

Once we dropped Judah off at Scott's parents house we were having trouble trying to figure out what we can do with our 3 hours of free time. I then remembered that I received an email earlier this week about a new thrift store opening up near Potomac Mills. The email was sent out from my favorite thrift store's Unique and they said the new store had the same low prices and that they also had "vintage finds". Our best dates are thrift dates so we figured we would check out the store and grab dinner on the way back. 

When we arrived the store had balloons outside and people waiting to greet us. We were pretty excited.

Scott had to hi-five everyone....hey we were excited to find some "vintage finds".

We spent an hour and a half combing the entire store. I kept thinking "they have to have more".  My first impression of the store is I think Savers was overpriced compared to Unique and it looked like people either combed through the inventory or they just don't have the "vintage finds". Most of their dresses are priced around $12 at Unique they are typically around $8. The children's clothing is really hit or miss and the most random things are really expensive, for example anything that has a GAP label regardless of the condition of the price is marked high. But then I found a handful of vintage items that are marked low. Also the employees will literally follow you around and organize the items you just looked through. Sorry I like to thrift in peace. They do however have a great book selection, this is the only place that I have found vintage crochet books. 

I was also able to pick up these awesome vintage Mc Hammer pants. These made the whole trip worthwhile. 

Savers felt more like a "Big Lots" than a thrift store. I'm sure at some point in the future if we are ever out in the Potomac Mills area I'll check out Savers again but I don't think I'll make a special trip just to go back. 

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