Quick Color Run Recap

Last weekend my two oldest girls and I got up bright and early on a Saturday morning and headed off to Lansing. Why? The Color Run!

As soon as I heard that the Color Run was going to be a mere 30 minutes away I was online to signup for it. There is nothing in the world to prepare you for what the Color Run really is besides getting out there and doing it.

Natalie & Cait before the Color Run Natalie & Cait with the Color Run Unicorn
I tried to explain to the girls what it was all about but they (mostly Cait) thought that it was just another one of my silly blogger things. Natalie did a bit of research ahead of time and knew a few things like there was a person dressed like a unicorn at each race.

The unicorn showed up and they spotted him before a huge crowd gathered around.

Natalie & Cait sweating rainbows

Sweating rainbows? LOL… that is a slight understatement! Color seeps from your pores, it colors the darkest hair the brightest shades of pink, yellow, purple, and turquoise. It can also make you look like a Smurf.

Me after the color run

I was lucky and didn’t get totally covered in the paint. Also… I didn’t roll in it in the middle of the street like some people.

group shot - color run

If you ever get the chance to take part in one of the Color Runs I would definitely sign up and dress for fun! Tutu’s, brightly colored knee socks, and fun hats are all part of the event.

Just a few things to remember… pack a wet wash cloth or two in a zip lock bag, a large garbage bag to cover your seats on the way home or if you’re brave a change of clothes, and a small ziplock bag for your cell phone so you can still take pics during the event without getting it covered in color.

Most importantly have fun with it!

Have you ever run in a Color Run?

Messy bedrooms, finding fun, and BabbaBox

Well, the holidays are almost behind us and that means things will start to slow down and get back to normal. Hopefully… right?

I know that I’m looking to things being back to normal, of course that means I have to go back to work after having 11 days off. I could get used to this staying at home thing… seriously! My house is cleaner than it normally is and I actually found the floor in my bedroom! I suffer from messy bedroom syndrome… it’s a terrible affliction.

I have a goal to keep my room clean and rid myself of my affliction. Call it a New Years Resolution if you will even though I always fail at those. Goal is better don’t you think? A side effect is that now I can say that kids have to clean their rooms perfectly since I did and they can’t remind me that my room is a mess!

So what do we do once we’ve met the no more messy rooms goal? Isn’t there something more fun to do? Silly question, right. There is always something better to do than clean your bedroom.

I’ll admit that there are times that I simply can’t find something fun and entertaining to do that all of my kids will enjoy. Whether it’s an outing or a craft it can be a challenge because of the age differences. Teens and toddlers don’t always have the same interests when it comes to a fun activity.

I recently found out about BabbaBox and think that this might just be the thing I need. It’s centered on timely themes and all of the materials are delivered right to my door so I can focus on spending more time with my kids and less time trying to figure out something fun to do. The monthly subscription to BabbaBox includes four major parts to help engage everyone and have fun.

CREATE – 2 to 3 projects kids do with their hands. With all of the materials included!
EXPLORE – A theme-based product where your child will engage with the world & nature.
STORY TELL – Books to stimulate your kids’ imaginations
CONNECT – Interactive learning with prepaid downloads approved by BabbaCo experts

January’s BabbaBox is centered around getting organized (think they’lll help with messy bedrooms?) and features a partnership with Real Simple and ThredUP.


January BabbaBox

Transform all of that post-holiday organization into fun, memorable time with your kids! Plus teaching kids about organization encourages ownership and independence – important qualities as they develop self-esteem and confidence.

First, you’ll CREATE a way to both organize and showcase all that kid artwork you have piled up in the corner! The end result is a beautiful clothesline art gallery that both you and your children can proudly display.

Then you’ll help your child CREATE his/her own art supply organizer! We even get them finger-painting with this project!

For the EXPLORE component, we give you an amazing tool for organizing your kids’ clothes and cleaning out that closet. We’ve partnered with a company called thredUP so that you will actually be able to get money in exchange for your kids’ old clothes. We also give you kid-friendly drawer labels to encourage your kids to take out and put away their own clothes.

The book for January features the beloved characters from Max and Ruby. (Max Cleans Up by Rosemary Wells.)

Your kids will love the Toca House app, where they help cute characters clean up their house.

And finally, we’ve included a special something for grown-ups – we partnered with Real Simple to give you a great guide for de-cluttering your life, as well as a little token from Jessica Kim.

I don’t think that this little box of fun will help keep our bedrooms clean and mess free, but it could help spark some ideas to help me keep things more organized around my house.

Please tell me that I’m not alone with the messy bedroom thing….

Sign up for BabbaCo’s newsletter which includes super fun DIY projects and sanity-saving ideas!

If you go to the BabbaBox Facebook page and share a holiday pic of your kids or family you will be entered to win an annual subscription of BabbaBoxes or a $500 gift certificate to crew cuts by J. Crew!

This article is sponsored by BabbaCo… but all opinion, messy bedrooms, failed New Year’s Resolutions, and goals reached are my own. 

Not just special occasions but any day of the week!

Every year for my birthday, our anniversary, holidays, and often just for no reason whatsoever me husband sends me flowers and I love them. The bright colors, the fresh smell, and the way the florist put so many different kinds together to make something beautiful. No matter what I do my arrangements never seem to turn out that good.

Lately though someone has been slacking in the flower department. Valentines Day came and went without a single flower…. I know that I said we didn’t have to do anything for it but it’s always nice to have a beautiful arrangement waiting for you at your desk when you come back from lunch. And it doesn’t have to be a special occasion to send flowers either! I’m open to getting them any day of the week (HINT).

With spring upon us all the pretty flowers are in bloom; daffodils, tulips, crocus, and my favorite hyacinths! Any of these would look beautiful on my table for Easter, Mother’s Day, or Wednesday.

tulipsThese tulips would be perfect! Why? Because they’re purple of course! One of my favorite colors.

Another favorite… lavender. I love the scent of it and how clean and long lasting it is.That is what makes this arrangement perfect! Aside from the gorgeous color it also has lavender in it. Can you imagine the fresh scent of roses and lavender filling the room and bringing a bit of spring into your house? What could be better aside from a perfectly cleaned house done by someone other than you?

lavenderMy hope is that my husband will actually read this post and send me flowers one of these days for no reason other than he loves and thinks I’m the best thing in the world since sliced bread (is that going a bit far?).

What is your favorite flower? Do you get flowers for no reason whatsoever?


This sponsored post was made possible by Mom Spark Media. I was compensated for my time investment and work on this campaign. Thoughts are all my own.

The year in pictures

While going through my reader the other day (Yes, I do go through it on occasion) I happened upon a post from Ashley from My Front Porch Swing and then the same one from Jessica over at Four Plus an Angel and decided to play along! I mean 12 pictures or my favorite posts from the year… how much easier can it get?


January brought Andrew’s first birthday! It seems so long ago but it was only a year…. and what a difference a year makes.


February brings Valentine’s Day… need I say  more?


March and my little girl turned 9 and brought Flat Lauren to the party!


April at my parents house for Easter and the girls were on a scavenger hunt that their grandma puts together every year for them.


May! And my first ever blogging conference! I made the trip…. all2 hrous of it to Holland Michigan for Gleek Retreat where I met some incredible women all from Michigan! That’s me along with Elena from Mommy’s in Timeout and Katie from Sluiter Nation!


In June all three of my girls took part in one of the parades that take place every year during the Curwood Festival. I was a proud mama watching all of them march!


The heat of July is only intensified by sitting by the ball field while you watch your kids play for what seems like hours on end.


August brought another conference for me and this time it was Bloggy Bootcamp. If you ever have a chance to go to one of these GO! Seriously it was incredible! Here I am with so great friends from Michigan! Dutch Being Me, Mommy is in Time Out, Daily Dribbles, and Buried with Children.


First day of school for September of course.


October was warm… on occasion and the day we carved pumpkins the kids all made their way outside and spent the afternoon playing together and carving pumpkins.


Every year in November the high school marching band puts on one final performance of the marching season indoors. Yes, indoors! Where it’s warm & we can enjoy it. It is truly one of the best events during the year.


And that brings us to December. And with it being the holidays and all I bet you’re tired of seeing all those happy holiday type pictures so instead of that I’ve decided to grace you with the Pimp of Greek Town. Now, I have no idea what his name is or if he really is a pimp but I HAD to take a picture of this. We took a trip to Detroit for my daughter’s 16th birthday and I have to say that this was probably the highlight of the day!

So there you have it folks…12 pictures from the past year. I do have to say that I loved going through all the pictures from the year and seeing how the kids have changed and grown, the places we’ve been, and all the fun we had. Picking just one picture for each month was hard because I wanted to share so much more with you all.

How was your year? Have you had time to sit and look back at all your pictures yet?

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas Card

I hope that you and your family have a


holiday this year!

Thank you all for your love, support, kind words, and friendship over the past year. It means more to me than words could ever express and I look forward to the upcoming year and all that has in store of us!

Wordless Wednesday ~ Camera Bandits

A word to the wise…… Never leave your camera unattended…..

WW - The letter

Children will get a hold of it and figure out how to use it. Whether it’s your phone, plain jane digital camera, or your prized possession… your DSLR.

WW - What?

Did she take this herself or did she let her little sister do it?

WW - The culprits

Look at them…. all cute and nice looking.  But don’t let them fool you.. they’re camera bandits.

WW - lauren

They sneak in when you’re Tweeting busy dealing with the toddler and start their game.

WW - deer in headlights

Picture after picture until the fun is done and then they place everything back exactly they way they found it. And one day when you finally pull pictures off of the camera you find them. The evidence.

Camera bandits have struck again.

Enhanced by Zemanta

#iPPP ~ Just Dance

Over the weekend the kids wanted to rent Just Dance 3 for the Wii because I’m a mean mom and haven’t bought it for them yet (or any other Just Dance game… maybe for the holidays). Our big plans for the night were to hang out together and play video games.

This was the first time that I can remember both of my older girls setting the phones down, walking away from the computers, and really spending some quality time together. I really enjoyed it and I think that they did too!

Now, to protect myself from the laughter that would be heard around the world I won’t post any pictures of myself playing the game. It’s to scary and I deleted them and the video that my lovely children took of me. Honestly…. I can’t afford the therapy you’d all need either.

Just Dance 3 Party

All the kids joined in!

Andrew thought that it was a lot of fun to stand in front of where his sisters were playing and dance! He spent a lot of the evening dancing away.

Just Dance 3 Party

See the pic on the right... that's what happens when I don't pay attention.

Except for the time while I was playing and he decided to climb on the table. I guess it’s easier to play with trains that way.

So here’s the thing…. Just Dance is a serious work out and if you have no rhythm it’s even harder! It just looks like you’re flaying about! But it was a lot of fun and I think that if I were to keep playing I might actually lose weight and look good doing it! Then maybe… just maybe there’d be a picture of me playing the game (don’t hold your breath though).

I think we need to make it a regular family event… maybe even make it into a contest or something fun.

Have you played any of the Just Dance games yet? What do you think of them?
I’m linking up with Liz & KLZ for iPhone Photo Phun because well…. my iPhone is awesome and I take about a million pics a week on it! May as well share them!

iPhone Photo Phun

Readers Night


Once a month one of the local schools hosts a program called Readers from Birth which focuses on introducing books and reading to kids.

I had heard about the program before but thought that maybe Andrew was to young to go even though it is for kids from birth. This week I gave in and took him along with my grandmother in law, cousin in law and her 2 year old daughter.

I have to say that I was a little concerned because Andrew doesn’t sit still for anything…. ever. And on top of that when we’ve taken him to the mall and let him run around the play area with other kids he’s had the tendency to get a little.. rough. Like full on shoving and that is usually our cue to leave before I become one of those moms. I didn’t want to go to an event and have him run around like a crazy kid or start pushing people around.

We went and it was pretty neat that they had everything all set up for a craft…. I think it was more for the parents since my cousin and I ended up doing most everything aside from a little of the coloring from the kids. Although, Andrew did like helping with the glue stick.

Readers NightI love how the event is run by pre-school teachers who were great with the kids and seemed to really enjoy what they were doing even after spending the entire day with little kids.

The teachers believe in reading and starting from a young age is important so once a month they put on this program and share reading with all the kids.

They simply didn’t read the books to the kids. They made it fun and interactive with felt boards, songs, dancing, and puppets. The music and dancing with the puppets was one of Andrew’s favorite parts of the night as you can tell by the blurry picture.

Dancing at Readers NightSomething that came as a surprise to me was that he actually sat down for a couple minutes and almost paid attention to the story! I think that it was more because all the other kids sat down and listened first, but as I suspected it didn’t take long for him to give up on that sitting still thing and get up to run around.

Once all the stories & songs were done they passed out juice and cookies for all the kids. My kid… the odd one… wouldn’t eat the cookie covered in frosting and sprinkles. A Lofthouse cookie to be exact! It’s okay… I didn’t let it go to waste.

Readers Night - snack and a new bookWhat a better way to spend the evening than playing with kids your own age (one of them being your cousin), drinking juice, and reading the new book that they gave everyone!

I think that he had fun and it’s a great way to introduce kids to books and reading. Next month we’ll be going again!

Do you take your little ones to reading night or a similar event?

There’s no place like….

I heard something the other day…. there’s no place like… and of course it got me thinking. There’s no place like what? A lot of places came to mind.

Of course the random thoughts came into mind like the Wizard of Oz but the I was back on track after a moment.

So there’s no place like what? What comes to mind first?

Home. Of course there’s no place like home.

Walking into your home after a long day at work or after being away on vacation is comforting. It’s the sight of the pictures of your friends and family welcoming you, the messes you left, or the perfect organization you have. It’s the smell that is unique to your home, again welcoming you in. Your home is special and always a place you can relax, laugh, and play with your family.

pumpking carving

Carving pumpkins at home

There’s no place like…. the beach.

The sun shining down on the sand warming it so when you walk on it your feet are enveloped in the heat or the water glistening with each ray of light that hits it. The beach is a wonderful place to sit back, relax with a book in one hand and a drink in the other. It’s also a great place to spend the day splashing in the surf with the kids, building sand castles, and eating a picnic lunch. The beach can be almost anything you want it to be and what’s even better is that they’re all over… whether it’s the beach at a local lake or the white sandy beaches on a tropical island there really is not place like it.

Kids on the beach

My kids on the beach in Mackinaw City

There’s no place like…. cuddling with a baby.

Cuddles from a baby are amazing. They make you feel safe & warm even though you’re the adult holding the baby. Holding a baby brings a smile to your face and can brighten anyone’s day no matter how bad it’s been. Holding a baby is love… pure and simple and there’s nothing like the joy you feel when holding your baby for the first time.


Holding my newborn

There’s nothing like… sleeping in a big bed alone.

I love this! I love being able to make the bed perfectly and then climb in and position myself right in the middle. The comfort of the cool sheets below me and the weight of all the blankets and comforters above me. There’s nothing like being able to spread out in bed… diagonal, across the middle, or however you want. Now this is not to say that sleeping with my husband is a bad thing but every once in a while when he’s gone I look forward to that time where I can hog the entire bed, pillows, and blankets!

There’s no place like….what? Well, it’s your turn so tell me!


Our Weekend Getaway

This past weekend we went up to Crystal Mountain with the entire family… 13 of us total went. I have to tell you that this is one of the best places to go in Michigan! There is so much for the entire family to do that there is no possible way to be bored!

Instead of me rambling on and on about the trip I’ll share with you some of the pictures from the weekend.

Lauren on the water slide


Cait on the slide   Natalie on the slide


Andrew smiling   Mtn view


family   Beach


shoreline   dunes