Friday, February 28, 2014

Celebrating Life...It's a Blog-Hop Birthday Party!!

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It's my birthday; I'm 36 today! You might wonder why I'm celebrating my age with such enthusiasm. The excitement didn't happen over night. I begin dreading birthdays and my age last year when I turned 35. Thirty-five was beginning to sound old; I was 5 years away from being 40 and over-the-hill.

I'm always hearing people (mostly the older ones at the gym, you know the ones in their 70's) are always saying that age is just a number, and it's how you feel that counts. I just smiled and shrugged; I mean they're 70, so of course they're going to want to feel young again. However, I began to ponder this saying and how or if it applied to me. And you know what? I think they're right. I mean that even though I'm 36-years-old, it's not like I'm slowing down, and rather instead of shifting into low gear my life has pushed the petal to the metal.

Since I turned 30, my life has been stuck in 4th gear.  I gave birth to both of my boys and our family of 2 radically transformed into a fun-loving, active family of 4. I ran my first 5k when I was 34 and continue to run at least one race each year with a goal of improving my time. I've become a regular at the gym either lifting weights or running on the treadmill. My active lifestyle encouraged me to start writing

Physically, my body doesn't feel 36. So, if I had to pick an age that I felt most like I would say 25. Yet, when I remember being 25; I don't picture the strong, confident woman I am today. I've learned a lot in the past 11 years, actually I mentally grew up. So maybe this whole "you're as old as you feel" saying isn't exactly true. I think rather then picking an age you feel like, just accept the age you are. Like fine wine, we only get better with age. Later tonight, my husband and I go out to celebrate my birthday and someone asks me why I am celebrating, I'm going to tell them that I'm 36-years-old, and I feel AWESOME!

Welcome to my Blog-Hop Birthday Party! Grab the button, link-up and register to win a pre-sale shopping pass to Designer Consignor's Spring Sale.

Grab this button:

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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Coming Soon! Blog Hop Party!

My birthday is on Saturday, and I am celebrating with a blog-hop party. If you're a blogger please link up and share what you are celebrating and if you're a follower come back on Saturday and enjoy reading what other bloggers and myself are celebrating. Everyone can share with others. Link up begins at Midnight on Friday, February 28. I'm in the process of adding a giveaway. The first 5 bloggers to link-up will be included as an entry for a comment on their post! Readers will have a chance to win a great prize and bloggers can increase their readership.

For example I will be celebrating my life/age. Here's some other ideas:

-Being a Mom
-new opportunities

It could be anything, but please keep it PG.

Grab the button below and Spread the Word. Let's get this party started!

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Friday, February 21, 2014

Wishful Thinking

It has been a looooong winter. I don't know how to explain to you how long it has been other than adding some extra "o's" to the word. It's been cold. It has snowed at least twice. Schools have been closed for at least 7 days this school year not to mention numerous delays. Kids are going to school on Saturdays to make-up the hours missed. (I feel like I need to add a disclaimer here. I live in North Carolina. I'm a Southern girl. I'm not used to cold other than an occasional ski trip.) Yes, it has been a long winter.

So when the craft stores put their Spring decor on the shelves; I was ready. Now granted, I'm usually the first to complain about stores selling Christmas decor before Halloween, but like I said it's been a long winter. I'm ready for Spring and pink and bunnies and flip-flops, OK I might be getting a little ahead of myself, but you know what I mean.

I racked up this Christmas at AC Moore with everything Melissa & Doug for the kids, so I was happy when I accumulated enough points for a $10 gift card to the store. Gift card in hand and Spring on my mind, I ventured inside the store to gather the pieces for an Easter wreath. Easter is in April this year, the 20th to be exact. Wishful thinking, you might say, and I'm like anything to get winter over with.

I picked out a lovely garland wreath, basic wide pink ribbon and a cute bunny. During my youngest son's naptime, my older son and I put it all together. We weaved the ribbon around the wreath and nestled the bunny's stick between the twigs. It's beautiful and colorful! I am so proud of it that I have already hung it on my front door.

I'm probably the only one in my neighborhood with an Easter wreath on my door, but I'm welcoming Spring with open arms, doors, whatever. Just come on Spring, hurry fast.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

More than Candy...A Lesson in Love

It was another week of snow that paralyzed our community for 3 days. Three days of no school and closed stores. Big, white fluffy flakes began falling around lunch time on Tuesday, and by 2 o'clock, nearly 5 inches had accumulated. People rushed home from work while others got stuck in the slow that only snow in the South can bring. Our family was prepared with an ample supply of the necessities-milk, bread and wine.

Ice followed the snow and left many without power. Thankfully, our home was spared and we remained warm and toasty. With school being closed and roads being icy, gym time and the class Valentine's Day party was out of the question.

Each day the boys and I started our morning either exercising with the Time Warner Cable On Demand Fitness Channel. We found kids Pilates and Yoga plus a high-impact Cardio Kickboxing dance and Cardio Combat workouts. I also worked off my calories by sledding, push-ups in the snow, walking in the snow and the most intense-- shoveling the driveway which was covered in ice.

Friday was Valentine's Day, and since the time-honored tradition of passing out cards and candy had been postponed, I used this day to teach love rather than getting high on chocolate (that happened too, but on a much smaller scale).

We created snow art. Chalk and snow. The icy covering made a perfect medium for the chalk.

We colored hearts on envelopes and enclosed free Krispy Kreme doughnut coupons and put them in our neighbor's mailboxes.

We surprised Daddy with chocolate covered strawberries.

We talked about Christ's love, and how much He loves us despite our mistakes. It was a good reminder when handing out cards even to the kids that have been mean to us. Teaching them the true meaning of love and watching their faces light up when they understood that Valentine's Day is more than chocolate and cards, but genuinely showing someone you care-- priceless!

We ended the evening with a family date night at one of our favorite restaurants BK (before kids). Lubrano's is a lovely locally-owned Italian restaurant, but space is limited and a crying kid could ruin everyone's evening. However, the kids (5 & 2) are becoming better behaved while dining out, so we gave it a try. Complimentary garlic knots arrived before the meal and coloring sheets for the kids plus wine for mom and dad made for a relaxing dinner and wonderful evening.

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Monday, February 10, 2014

Simply Stated #week4kindness

It's probably no coincidence that Random Act of Kindness week happens in February, a month known for candy hearts, chocolates and Valentine's Day. I wonder though what if it was more than just a day to tell someone you love them, but an everyday occurrence of appreciation of those around us.

I've been wracking my brain trying to think of the ultimate act of kindness that I could share with those around me. Paying it forward at Starbucks, baking cookies for the town fire fighters or giving out gifts cards to the homeless--all good things, but I was seeking something with a lasting significance. Ironically, I found the ultimate act at the grocery store in the middle of the check-out line the clerk turns to me and instead of saying "have a nice day" or "thank you" she just said, "God Bless You." It was so simple, yet it spoke volumes. In the midst of my hustle and bustle of grocery shopping and reigning in a wandering 2-year-old this woman blessed me with her words. Her kindness was free and beyond measure. My spirits were lifted, and what had started as a mom frazzled day turned into one smiles and sunshine.

You don't have to spend a lot of money or bake lots of food to be kind. Kindness comes from within. May your week of Random of Acts of Kindness be a kick-off for a year of kind words, thoughts and deeds.

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