I went tubing and now my butt is bruised.

I hope everyone had a fabulous Labor Day weekend—we did (although I’m not sure my tushie would agree with that). We spent the weekend in the mountains doing everything from hiking to apple picking to tubing down a river with the only instruction being, “If you bring it, you’ll lose it,” by a guy talking with a lit cigarette in his mouth. Classy.The New Flex: Wireless Activity Tracker
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That statement held true. My sunglasses broke, my friend lost her Fitbit, her daughter lost the golf club she was paddling with, and I think we all lost our dignity. But hey, we laughed the entire way so it was way worth it. And then we rewarded ourselves with beer, wine and Bloody Marys.
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One thing I wasn’t expecting was to wake up with a bruised butt the next morning. Apparently I wasn’t supposed to sit with my butt all the way down in the tube so every single rock wouldn’t hit it.  Unfortunately, I don’t remember getting that instruction before departure. Rude.

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Want to do something amazing for someone wonderful today? Here’s how.

Donate to Olivia’s Amazon Wish List  |  Learn more on Carol and Demian’s Facebook page I have this amazing friend, Carol, who I’ve known since my early 20’s. You know the time when no one has any real responsibilities? There was a group of us girls that would hang out all of the time after work and on the weekends— with very little cares in the world (although with boy drama it didn’t seem so at the time). Eventually Carol moved back home to South Florida and married her amazing college sweetheart, Demian. As they tried to start a family, they had more grief than many of us know. It was heartbreaking. But then Carol got pregnant and everyone was SO happy for them, a little baby girl to welcome into their family. Olivia was born August 16, 2007 with Cerebral Palsy. Oh how Carol and Demian loved Olivia. And even though I can’t imagine what they went through on a daily basis, I never, ever heard them complain. Olivia went to heaven on October 1, 2012 . She was only 5 years old. To show you the type of friends Carol and Demian are, I’d like to share a story about them. When my in-laws were still alive, they lived in South Florida about 30 minutes from Carol and Demian. At the time my son turned two, my mother-in-law was already very sick so we decided to fly down and throw a birthday party for him in my in-law’s condo. It was us, my in-laws, my brothers-in-law, and a face painter who brought rabbits (yes, random). Because we wanted to make it special and more like a party, I invited Carol, Demian and Olivia to join us for the celebration. I thought it would be wonderful for Darren to have a little friend there. At this point, it was extremely hard to take Olivia out of the house. She had feeding tubes, special seats and so many more needs that I can’t even begin to comprehend. But wouldn’t you know it that they got everything together and made the 30-minute drive to my son’s second birthday party. It’s a memory I’ll always cherish. That’s the type of people Carol and Demian are. After Olivia’s tragic passing, Carol and Demian chose to celebrate her birthday by gathering their friends and family and blowing bubbles up into heaven. Last year, everyone who came brought gifts that were distributed to many special needs children. It was such a beautiful event, that they decided to make it a yearly occurrence. This year, Olivia would have turned seven and they’re expanding their ask to anyone that is interested in celebrating her heavenly birthday. Once again bubbles will be blown into heaven on August 16th ; in addition, they’re hosting a gift drive that will benefit local special needs children. In partnership with Pediatric Therapy Associates of South Florida, they’re hoping to provide an extra special holiday gift for differently-abled children like Olivia. To make it easy for you to donate, they set up an Amazon Wish List to better guide your gift buying. You can get more details on their Facebook page as well. Their address is linked to the lists, so they will go directly to them. Please make sure the gift is unwrapped so they can match toys to their recipients based on their need/ability. Thank you, everyone!!!coach denim handbag

Two weeks as a stay-at-home-mom = a one-way ticket to the Looney bin.

First I have to say ‘hats off’ to all of you stay at home moms out there. I literally don’t know how you do it. Why am I bringing this up? Because I had this grandiose idea that taking the last two weeks of summer off would be an amazing way to usher in the school year with the ki ds. In my mind: The kids would swim away the days and fall into bed at night happy and exhausted. In reality: It’s the end of the summer. The kids are sick of the pool. And they hate sleeping.   Birthday Printable Party, Frog Prince Paperie, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com ds. In my mind: The kids would swim away the days and fall into bed at night happy and exhausted. In reality: It’s the end of the summer. The kids are sick of the pool. And they hate sleeping.   Birthday Printable Party, Frog Prince Paperie, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com In my mind: We’d set up a fun and profitable lemonade stand where we would learn the meaning of earning a dollar. In reality: I set up the stand and then I had to persuade the kids to sell the lemonade. At one point I resorted to showing some leg to get people to stop. Probably not the best lesson to teach my kids.
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In my mind: We’d finish summer reading off strong by reading the first Harry Potter book together. First I would read a page and then my son, etc. In reality: My son hid the book after the second day and now we can’t find it.     In my mind: The two weeks would fly by. In reality: I’m thinking of dropping my kids off at school 5 days early. So as the summer winds down, I realize that all of you moms that stay at home with your kids all summer are not only special but deserve to throw a kegger when you put your kids on the bus in the upcoming weeks. Please, please, please invite me.

Is it really time to go back to school? Oh yes it is, thank gawd.

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Many people have been asking why I haven’t updated my blog recently, actually it’s just my dad asking but in my head I like to think that people all over the interwebs are just waiting for a blog post. Hi dad.

I wish I could tell you I’ve been traveling the world to places with no Internet connection but, no. I’ve been working a bunch and hanging with my kids at the neighborhood pool every spare moment we get. But now, all of a sudden it’s back-to-school time (a million moms are jumping up and down with glee about this.)

Fortunately I’m on vacation now (#brag) soaking up the last couple weeks of no homework, no packing lunches, no tests, no early morning buses, no me forgetting to do something for their classrooms, etc.
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Most of all, I want my kids to have the freedom to do nothing until school starts. As we (I) speak, they’re frolicking in a creek as I pray that they’re no snakes in said water. And earlier today they went on a rock slide over and over and over again. Man I love vaca. But all good things must come to an end #acidwashjeans and so I’ve collected a list of back-to-school must haves that can all be purchased online so you don’t have to pull your kids out of the creek to head to the dreaded mall. 

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Back-to-school kiss-up to teacher gifts 🙂