National LOVE Day

Monday, February 17, 2014

Mondays are usually reserved for my workout rundowns, but mine is a little to post. There's a reason, but I don't want to get caught up in excuses. Let's do a weekend recap instead. It's a bit more exciting anyhow.

Friday night, I came home from work to a beautiful bouquet of roses and some Ferrero Rocher chocolates for Valentine's Day. V-day was pretty low key at our house, but it was fun to look through all of Peanut's little valentines from his school friends. All the kidlets are learning to write, so their handwriting is adorable.

After I gave Peanut a special Valentine, he ran into the dining room and wrote me a love letter of his own.

Mommy I love you to 100 forever. Signed, Kayne
Best Valentine ever!

Saturday night we were invited to a couple's Valentine's Day dinner with some church friends. It was a hit! We played The Newlywed Game--and Hubster and I won! Oh, but he might be in the doghouse for a few of his answers. The worst "How would you fill in the blank: my wife is a natural-born....what?" Oh. Yes. He. Did. He put Nag! Those that know me would probably widen their eyes at such a statement, knowing how inaccurate it is and how .... he is. Haha!

newlywed game

Our hostess had the most lovely V-day decorations all over her house. Her mother saved all her sweet lil valentines from when she was a kid. I wish I would've gotten a few pictures, but they all had such endearing vintage prints on them, like this:

Capping off the games, we had some tasty fruit fondue. This was after a full spread of lasagna, veggies, fruit salads and all kinds of goodies. No one walked away without a full, warm belly.

Chocolate fondue with fruit

Sunday consisted of church, followed by some much needed slooooowed down Netflix time. This time momma got to pick what we were watching. The choices? I ended up watching A Little Bit of Heaven with Kate Hudson. It was a heart-wrenching story, like a Lurlene McDaniel book. What really stood out, aside from the exploration of existentialism, was the adorable swing in the main character's living room! I love this idea and want Hubster to install one pronto.

Marley's kitchen

Next up was Amélie. The weird connection here is that I was reading Amanda Knox's book, and this was a movie she persuaded Sollecito to watch because it was one of her favorites. When I skimmed over it on Netflix, I thought, what the heck? It's a very interesting little movie with whimsical cinematics and quirky humor. I love how Amélie touched the lives of a whole bunch of people in the most creative, touching ways and how there are multiple storylines woven through the actual love story. It is not your typical cookie-cutter sappy love story. Put it in your queue, it's good.

How do you normally celebrate Valentine's Day? What's your favorite love story?

Agility Ladder DIY

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

You can get all the supplies to make your own agility ladder at a regular hardware store, and it really only takes less than half an hour to make.

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Agility ladders are an amazing unsung fitness tool that you're probably not using. I will be back to share some agility training drills soon too, so stay tuned for that. But these exercises shouldn't be saved for professional football players or high school track teams. Agility drills not only increase your agility, but they also provide a great source of cardio, especially if you're getting bored with your treadmill routine. You can get pretty creative with your fancy footwork, like sport dancing, and it also tests your mental acuity. We did some agility drills at the NASM workshop I attended and they were kind of fun and challenging and had me out of breath within a few minutes.

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  • Short nails/carpet tacks
  • Hammer
  • Wood shims or other flat thin wood*
  • Rope
  • Tape measure


1. Stack two shims on top of each other with one narrow side and one thick side of each together. Nail the end of the rope into the top of the first shim stack.

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2. Measure 15 inches to the next rung and hammer another nail into the top of that shim stack.

3. Continue until you have 15 rungs. Cut the rope at the end of the 15th rung. Now, go back and do the same thing on the other side of the ladder, hammering the string to the shims every 15 inches.

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Voila, your very own agility ladder! It's easy to fold up and hang in your garage or shed. Be careful if you're doing this project outside with little kidlets around. All the neighbor kids ran over when they saw what I was doing and asked if they could "help." Um, no. And we ended up with a knocked over pile of nails in the grass that I was really trying to prevent (barefoot in the summer, ouch!). Just hand them a few shims and a little length of rope and see who can make the best godseye.

*I would actually recommend using some thin wood versus shims. Shims are what I had on-hand, but nailing into the narrow ends proved to be a bit tricky. The wood needs to be pretty thin though, so you're not tripping over it. Also, if you have feet that are much larger than mine (women's 8), the width of a shim might not work for you. You should be able to fit both feet inside with some room left over, so take your own measurements from there.

Lately I've Been...

Monday, February 10, 2014

...Around, just not as much in this space as I'd like to be. For that matter, even my home could use quite a bit of TLC right about now.
...Surviving some terrible nausea and attempting to make peace with the fact that the only thing you can do is just wait it out.
...Waiting out the cold here in Wisconsin. A day in the 30s would be bikini weather at this point. Poor kiddos have been so cooped up in school without recess, they're really getting restless.
...Looking forward to our upcoming trip to Florida in March. This will be the first time in my life I get to go to Disney. Can't wait to watch Peanut soak it all in. Hopefully Florida welcomes us with the warm air we so desire.
...Getting very inspired by the Olympics and all the chatter about it. What, me? Into sports?
...Reading Amanda Knox's story, Waiting to be Heard. I mean, wow! She pretty much lived nightmares that I've had before. Like any good mystery, the book has me unable to put it down. It's thick, but I got through most of it in a weekend.
...Looking at houses and dreaming about living in the country. However, the thought of actually listing our first home (and making is show-ready!) and the prospect of moving have me completely paralyzed.
...Staring at my Peanut and all his expressions and movements and just reveling in them. Kids are special, no? He reminds me of everything that matters most.
...Cooking up a special project that I can't quite announce yet, but you'll see...

What have you been up to?