Tidying Up

first row: Target (no longer available), right

second row: left, center, right

third row: left, right

While it appears to be all quiet on the western blogging front (it is summer, after all), I’ve been tidying up my blog design. (And moving to WordPress…eek!) At the same time, it’s a battle to keep things tidy at home. As Monica has grown, so has her collection of toys and books. To contain some of the chaos, I bought the two baskets from the top row. Not only do her things have a “home,” but it’s easy to move a bunch of toys from one room to the other. Say, from the front room to our bedroom so she can play while we get ready in the morning. Or from the backroom to the back yard if we want to play outside. Now if only she can learn to put her toys back into the baskets!

On Blogging and Running

About a month ago, Lindsay Ostrom of Pinch of Yum was a guest on The Lively Show. I enjoy reading food blogs, but hadn’t heard of Pinch of Yum until then. In addition to sharing delicious recipes with gorgeous photography, Pinch of Yum shares their monthly income reports. Their first income report was for August 2011 and the blog made $21.97. In May 2014, Pinch of Yum had net income of over $23,000! Suffice it to say, I’ve read more of their income reports (and related tips) than recipes ;)

What does this have to do with running? In January 2014′s report, Bjork (Lindsay’s husband and behind the scenes guy of Pinch of Yum) shared the following mindset for growing a blog:

Be a cross country star, not a tennis star. I love tennis. It was my favorite sport in high school. But I always had a ton of respect for the cross country guys and girls. Not only because of their crazy ability to run long distances, but because of the mindset they had in regards to their performance. With tennis, if you beat your opponent you consider the day a success. With cross country, if you beat your own previous record you consider the day a success. Your journey of growing your blog will be much more fulfilling if you aim to outperform yourself as opposed to other blogs.

Amen, brother!

Like blogging, I took a bit of an extended maternity leave from running. Sure, I ran a 10K this past October, but I wasn’t running consistently. About three months before Monica’s birthday, John’s sister talked me into running a half marathon. I pulled up a Hal Higdon training plan, dusted off my running shoes, and got to work. The day before Monica’s birthday, I ran my first half marathon in over three years. Was is pretty? Not exactly. But I went out there and finished.

Likewise, this past spring, I felt ready to get back into blogging on a more consistent basis. The analogy isn’t perfect, but here are a few more thoughts about why blogging is like running:


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Toolbox Essentials for the New Homeowner

It’s summertime, which means DIY projects and household improvements are filling people’s weekend “to do” lists. The summer is also a prime time to buy a new house, which means you need to be prepared for repairs. If you’re in either of these camps, you’ll enjoy today’s post sponsored by Gotstock.

What’s in Your Toolbox?
Whether you live in an apartment, condo, or house, you should have a few basic tools on hand to tackle simple household repairs. This isn’t about being an HGTV DIY expert; it’s just about being reasonably self-sufficient.

Think about whether you would be able to deal with an emergency. If you don’t have to the tools to do this; you need to make a trip to the hardware store. This applies to both the ladies and gentlemen.

What is the Best way to Acquire Tools?
There are ready-equipped tool kits on the market which give you access to a variety of different sizes and types of tools. The problem is that the majority are not cheap, and you may not need all of the items in the kit.

The best time to buy the very basic tools is when you first start running your own home. Then as you go on, you can acquire, rent, or borrow extra materials as jobs require them. So what are the essentials?


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Summer Wedding Looks

Hi, friends! Wedding season is upon us! While we only have one wedding on our calendar thus far, I was having so much fun creating a wedding guest outfit that I put together three for you! Since I absolutely love using Rent the Runway* (I rented dresses for the last two weddings we attended), each… 

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To Friends of Young Kids

Monica’s first birthday is this Sunday. Where has the time gone??? I didn’t become a mom one year ago. Or even one year and nine months ago. The process of becoming a parent started over two years ago. Two years ago yesterday, I lost my first pregnancy. I was 6 weeks pregnant. While we’re extremely blessed and grateful that we have Monica; other… 

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Hiding a Cable Box and DVD Player

Hello and happy weekend! Do you have anything planned for these next few days? Lately, our weekends have been a mix of relaxing, half marathon training (my recent 9-miler was a beast), and house projects. Last weekend, I finally converted our “new” buffet into a media center. In keeping with our “theme” of hiding TV… 

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The Urge to Purge

Hi! Remember me? I hope you’re enjoying the spring weather while crickets have been chirping around these parts. As I touched on a while back, blogging has moved down on the list of priorities, while chasing after a baby toddler and training for a half marathon have moved up. But I’m feeling inspired to start… 

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April Showers

Umbrella, Leather Tote, Hunter wellies, Gingham Shirt, Pants I don’t know about you, but this week seemed to drag on forever. Add some rain and cloudy skies and I’ve practically self-diagnosed myself with seasonal affective disorder. One thing that helps me get through the week is having something fun to look forward to on the… 

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Baby Broccoli and Cheese Egg Souffles

    Heeeey! You know it’s time to get back into blogging when the baby is back asleep at 2am and you can’t fall back asleep because you’re thinking about blogging. What’s new with all of you? It’s been a busy few months at work for me, but I’m slowly starting to get my groove… 

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2014 Super Bowl desserts

It’s that time of year again! Time for entertaining commercials, tasty snacks, and a pretty big football game. Once again, I’m taking inspiration from the competing teams to bake a dessert for our Super Bowl party. Going into the NFC/AFC championship games, I hoped that Denver and Seattle would make it to the Super Bowl. Denver… 

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Where My Brain is these Days

Hi friends! How are things shaking? I feel like it’s been forever since we last chatted. My last blog post was about a month ago, which feels like an eternity. During this break, life has been taking center stage between my cousin’s wedding, Christmas, and spending all sorts of time with Monica. John also turned… 

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Traveling by Car with a Baby

Shirt, Leggings, Sweatshirt, Hair Ties, Gray Slippers, PJ’s, Baby Boots Christmas is next week!!! I don’t know about you, but I’m not ready. Before cozying up with family, I still need to purchase a few more gifts, wrap presents, and bake Christmas cookies. And some years include a drive to Ohio to be with my family. Since we’ve already… 

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A Wedding Guest Dress (with a Baby!)

Alexis Bittar earrings and Diane von Furstenberg dress via Rent the RunwayKate Spade clutch and Banana Republic pumps   Hi, friends! It’s been a while since I’ve joined the Friday’s Saturday’s Fancies fun and this week’s “holiday party” theme couldn’t come sooner. My cousin is getting married this month, so I’ve been brainstorming what to… 

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