Monday, July 29, 2013

Lucy's {DIY} Lemonade Stand

Every summer, the small town my grandma lives in holds a community-wide yard sale.
This year, we decided it would be fun for Lucy to have a lemonade stand in my grandma's yard during the big sale.  SHE decided she wanted to try to earn enough money for a new bike WITH TRAINING WHEELS!

(She had a tricycle and a balance bike . . . but she had outgrown the tricycle and just never got the hang of the whole balance bike thing.)

And yes, I know she's a little behind the curve when it comes to bike riding.  She's four-and-a-half, and can't begin to ride a bike!?  

Well . . . she CAN ride a horse.
So there.

Anyway, back to the bike -- and the lemonade stand.
(And please excuse this post full of iPhone-only photos!)

Since I decided on this whole lemonade stand idea approximately six days before the sale, I had to think fast.
How to make a lemonade stand in a very quick and simple fashion . . . ???

Some old wooden crates in my garage caught my eye, and my vision began to come together.

Those were the crates BEFORE.
I put three of them together with a hammer and a few nails and got this:

(At this point, Lucy was already excited and yelling "Lucy's lemonade!  Get your ice-cold lemonade here!").
If I had a nickel for every time I heard that this past week, I'd be able to buy my OWN new bike!

Next was the paint . . . the best part. :-)
All (Rust-oleum) spray paint, of course.

I took the burlap banner flags I had used for the "Sweet Stable" at Lucy's last birthday party and spray painted the yellow.  (I figured I might as well reuse them -- and this also saved me the extra time of cutting out all of those burlap triangles AGAIN.)

I used stencils to paint the white letters over the top of where the black letters had been.

I strung them all together with some twine and hot glue . . . and hung them between two flat, thin boards I nailed on each side of the base.

The sign was an old wooden frame (that still had the wooden backing attached), that I spray painted the outside of - and slapped on a couple coats of chalkboard paint on the inside.
And my trusty ol' chalk ink markers, of course!

It all came together great (considering the few hours it took me and the fact that I used only items I already had laying around my garage!).  
Lucy's Lemonade was a big hit!

Lucy worked so hard (especially the first day).  This was on the way home from Grandma's house (five minutes from our house).  She fell fast asleep about 30 seconds after we pulled onto the road . . . with a tight grip on her money case! : )~

She made over $100 at her lemonade stand (AND sold her old tricycle and balance bike), which gave her more than enough money to buy a new PINKALICIOUS bike . . .

. . . and a pretty rad unicorn helmet, too!

Pretty darn cute, if you ask me!  

All-in-all, it was a VERY successful weekend!  We learned a great lesson about earning money . . . and got a cool new bike out of it, too!

I had about a dozen people ask me if the lemonade stand was for sale.  
And I had several people tell me I should really consider building and selling them.  
Tempting! : )~

For now . . . the lemonade stand is going in the play room.  I'm sure it will provide countless more hours of fun for Lucy in there.  (And I'm sure we'll bust it back out for the big yard sale again next year!)

I wonder what she'll be trying to earn then . . . ?
Maybe we'll start her car fund. : )~

Monday, July 22, 2013

Max = 8 Months!

Yep, I'm a week late (again), but here I am with ANOTHER Max update, which means my little man is ANOTHER month older! 

It's hard to be sad about him getting older though, when he just keeps getting cuter and more and more fun!
And he is still SUCH a sweetheart and SUCH a happy, easy-going little guy . . . (pretty sure I can rest assured that isn't going to change at this point!: )~  

And once again . . . no shortage of smiling pictures!

Here's what Max is up to . . .
Until next month, when we have another doctor's check-up, I'm still guessing on his weight.  
All I know is, he really hasn't changed much in the last few months, size-wise.  He still fits the same clothes, still wears the same size diapers, etc.  
(Although with the way he's been eating suddenly this past week, that could be changing soon!!!: )~ 

He is still ONLY eating purees . . . can't get him to eat Puffs or teething cracks (or even smushed-up bananas, for that matter!) AT ALL without his gag reflex kicking in.  I keep telling myself maybe that will change when he gets a tooth or two (as if he's going to be able to chew a whole lot with a tooth or two! HA!).  
(Can you believe he still doesn't have a tooth!?!  I've been thinking that was gonna happen for two months now!  You can actually "see" the bottom two teeth down in his gums . . . they are so close to popping through!)

Another thing that is SO CLOSE, you can see in the following pictures . . .

Little man will be crawling any day now . . . any moment, in fact!  
He gets up on all fours, rocks and rocks and rocks, and then launches himself forward into a belly flop!
(Interesting technique, but it gets him where he needs to go!) :-)

He also just started sitting himself up (from crawling position).  
I think lowering the crib mattress is first on my to-do list tomorrow.  
(Now, if I can just remember how to do that!?)

He hasn't pulled himself up to standing yet, but in order to save myself from worrying myself to sleep every night, I think it's best if I just lower it NOW.  Lucy never even tried to pull herself up and out of her crib, but this little guy is much more of a monkey than his big sister! 

I just realized I left the sleeping info. off the chalkboard this month . . . probably because it's a non-issue! Haha!
Max sleeps great at night - and still takes 3 naps (totaling 5-6 hrs) a day, too!  This guy likes his sleep. (Big sister was/is the same way.)  Not sure where they get it . . . I'm not a big sleep lover - and their dad really isn't, either. (Although, he might be if he didn't have to work 16 hours a day!)

Oh, well . . . I'm not complaining.  :-)

The laundry basket picture!

He still looks pretty little in there . . . until you see this one:

Thankfully, like I mentioned earlier, he hasn't changed a WHOLE lot the last month or so . . . but (sigh) look at month #1.  
Just look at my little snuggle bug!
What happened?  And who pushed the fast-forward button?

Annnnnnd . . . now, before I start sobbing uncontrollably, I'm off to work on Lucy's lemonade stand before the big yard sale this weekend!  I can't wait to show you -- it's SO CUTE!!!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

My name is Bec, and I am NOT a runner.

Yep, that title pretty much sums it up.
A runner, I am not.

Never have been.
And by never . . . I mean <NUH-EV-ER> . . . NEVER.

Like, even back in my volleyball days, when I was actually in shape, I dreaded the days we'd have to run more than the usual 5-10 laps around the gym for a warm-up.
On occasion, my coach would get mad enough at the team to make us run a mile - and once, it was even two miles.

Yes, I said once.
And yes, I remember this day.
All too well.
(That is soooo pathetic, but I hated running that much.)

Why did (do) I hate it so much....?
It's HARD.  
And I can't do it.
That's the short answer.

And here's the long answer . . .
1. I can't breathe.
2. I get a side ache.
3. Everything hurts.
4. I feel like a two-ton elephant.
5. I sweat like a pig.
6. I'm bored out of my mind.
7. I have a million other things I'd rather do (like clean out the bottom of the garbage cans or birth another child without an epidural).
8. My chest feels like it's going to explode.
9. I wonder if I'm having a heart attack every time I try it.
10. I feel pathetic for being so pathetic.

Need I go on . . . ?
Does anything about the above list sound enticing to YOU?

Well, I know there are lots of you crazies out there.
Matter of fact, I'm related to - or friends with - most of them.
I'd say a good 75% of the people I spend the most time with are serious runners.
And by serious, I mean . . . they do it on a daily basis.  And they ENJOY it.
(I don't know why I'm drawn to crazy people, but it's a fact of my life.)

Let's just say, I spend a lot of time hearing about running and races and this many miles and that many hours, etc, etc. . .
Not that I mind.
(I really don't.)
But running has always been their thing . . . everyone else's thing.

The thought of joining any one of them on a run is nothing short of a perfect mixture of laughable . . .  and terrifying.
(And I can truly say, it has never even crossed my mind to attempt it!)
No, thank you.  

So now . . . prepare to be shocked.

About three or four months ago, I (in a moment of insanity) downloaded the Couch-to-5k app on my iPhone.
I blame Jillian Michaels.
(If you follow my blog's facebook page, you know I did Jillian's 30 Day Shred in an attempt to rid myself of the extra pregnancy pounds after Max was born.)

I'm not sure if it was because I was so sick of her voice, I couldn't fathom doing that video for another 30 days. . . or if I was actually feeling more strong and fit than I've felt in some time, and therefore, felt (again, in a weak moment) that I might actually be able to run 5 kilometers.
In a row.
(And Kari didn't help, either.  She was training for a 5k at the same time, and kept insisting if she could do it, I could do it. .... I still love you, girl!)

Annnyway, I started the program.

I ran (if you can call it that when you're "running" 90 seconds at a time) - three days a week.
Every week, I thought I would NEVER be able to move on to the next week's schedule.
(Run for five minutes straight? . . .  No way!  Eight minutes?? . . .  Yeah, right! . . . And let's not even talk about Week 6, Day 3:  Run for 22 minutes. . . . Ummmm, NOT happening.)

Miraculously, I managed to complete the program.
Only problem?
The program ends with you running for 30 minutes straight.
Which I can do.
But there ain't no way I'm running 3.1 miles in 30 minutes.

I'm lucky -- and I do mean LUCKY -- if I can squeak in under a 12-minute-mile pace.

Yes, I'm basically walking.  There are probably little old ladies who power walk the malls every morning who would blow by me "running."

I wish that was an exaggeration.  

But the bottom line is . . . I guess . . . I'm running.
It isn't pretty.

[Let me take a moment to give you a visual:  
You know that Hawaiian Punch stuff?  
Picture that color, only about 15 times more RED.  That's my face.  
Ever been in a monsoon?  Get soaked much?  
Yep, that's almost how soaked I am at the end of my run.]

Why am I posting this now?
Well . . . Sunday morning (the only day my hubs is home now), I got up at 5:30 before church, and I ran FIVE. WHOLE. KILOMETERS.
In a row.

It was seriously monumental.
I can honestly say, with 100% certainty, I have NEVER run that far IN MY LIFE.
I almost couldn't believe I'd done it.  It took me 36 minutes, so it's not like I deserve any medals here, but it actually happened.
(I use the RunKeeper app now, so it tracks my time/distance with GPS.)

So, now what?
At this point, I'd be perfectly happy to quit and never run another step in my life.
But somehow, I've been finagled into running a 5k "race" (it's a just-for-fun one - not even timed - yahoo!) with my BFFs and my sister at the end of the summer.

This, unfortunately, means I have to keep this up for two more months.
With my hubs working out of town six days a week now, this is going to be an interesting challenge for me (no, I don't have a treadmill).   I really am lucky if I "get to" run two days a week!  My "team" might be dragging my sorry butt over the finish line . . . good thing I know they love me, and they won't mind. : )~

And now, to all of my "real" runner friends who are learning about this for the first time . . . 
Don't ask me to run with you.  (I mean this in the nicest possible way.)  I really am still a pathetic excuse for a "runner", and I don't have plans of that changing.  
And don't ask me to run in any races, either.  
Particularly any that have the word marathon anywhere in them.  
(That seems to be the thing lately.)

I will not ever be running a marathon, a half-marathon, or even a quarter-marathon, for that matter.  
I have zero desire . . . and let's be real . . . I'm just too dang lazy.  

But I'll gladly cheer you on! :-)

If you're still here, thanks for hanging on through this ridiculously long-winded post.  
I have a hard time telling stories the short way.  

And Bec + running = a very long (and slow!) story!

One more thing I will say . . . I think I have proven (to myself, at least) that anything IS possible!  
I definitely never thought I'd see the day I wrote a blog post on this topic! : )~

My name is Bec, and I am a (very slow) runner. 

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Monday, July 1, 2013

A Summer Bucket List :-)

Summer doesn't generally seem to arrive here in this part of Oregon until July.
So . . . now that summer is "officially" here (and boy, is it -- we're headed for 91* today!), I decided it was high-time we got our bucket list up!

(There are a zillion "Summer Bucket List" ideas on Pinterest . . . you must check them out!)

I used my old window-turned-chalkboard -- and my favorite chalk ink markers (I've raved about those things on my blog before, but seriously, if you haven't tried 'em out yet . . . you are missing out!)

Lucy had fun helping me decide which activities to add to the chalkboard.
Except that she wanted to do them all RIGHT NOW.  

None of these things are too "out of the box" or anything. 
In other words, i didnt go all crazy trying to come up with lots of super-creative and new things. 
These are pretty much just our usual summer staples -- things we will be sure to actually DO!
And I will admit, I thought of about a dozen more things (at least) once I had finished the board.  

Oh, well.  

There's no rule that says we can't have MORE fun than what's listed on this silly ol' chalkboard.  : )~
But we will have fun checking off the fun activities and adventures that are on the chalkboard, all summer long! 

So far, Lucy's spent a lot of time doing this:

Thank the Lord for kiddie pools.  
(Can I get an Amen???)
Hours of entertainment . . . in your own backyard . . . for less than $20! 
I vote YES!

I hope you like our little summer list -- and if you haven't already made one of your own -- maybe today's the day!? :-)
Have fun!

And now that Google Reader has disappeared, if you haven't already done so . . .
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