Fix #20

Normally I don't schedule my fixes two weeks apart. BUT, when Stitch Fix emails you a deal for a Style Pass (one-time $49 fee, applied towards a fix), for unlimited fixes without a style fee... I couldn't NOT sign up, and then immediately schedule a fix. Which is precisely what I did.

And, just a few weeks ago I was watching a Stitch Fix stylist on Instagram stories reveal her fix. In it was a pair of faux leather leggings that I was just itching to try on. I'm also riding the camo train so hard right now.

So, I put in a call for Raquel to see if she could hunt me down some faux leather leggings, a camo sweater/sweatshirt, as well as a few more basic tees, and anything to compliment faux leather...

Raquel did another stellar job, per the usual, and met every single request.
Immediately upon opening I thought my "just for fun fix" was going to be a 5/5...

Let's take a look!

Sanctuary || Fitzy Camo Print Cardigan
Soaked in Luxury || Magalie V-Neck Pocket Knit Tee
Spanx || Kemella Faux Leather Legging
Per Raquel's suggestion, I paired the leggings with every top in this fix, including this knit top and cardigan.

I have to say, right out of the box, I was in love with the Spanx leggings. I love the color. I loved that they sucked in all the things. At first when I pulled these on I thought they were going right to my dresser. However, after looking at them in every photo from this fix, I just didn't love them on me. Maybe (???) if they were black I would keep them around. I'm not sure. But, I just couldn't pull the trigger to hang on to these.

The Soaked in Luxury pocket knit tee. I wish you could FEEL how unbelievably soft this tee is. It's like butter and silk had a baby. This is easily the softest tee I've ever laid hands on. I really like the green color, it's something I don't have in my closet. I also appreciate that the back is longer.
Moving on to the camo cardi. I can't seem to get enough camo in my life. I have a camo tee, camo Spanx leggings, and now a request for a sweater. I took a poll on my Instagram stories to see if there was such as thing as too much camo in one's wardrobe. Turns out, an overwhelming majority say bring it on!
Verdict ::
V-Neck Tee - KEEPER
Camo Cardi - KEEPER
Le Lis || Yeaton Cowl Neck Knit Top
Out of the box I wasn't in love. I know I've been requesting neutral colors, but this one just seemed so meh. The cowl neck is great, the cutout detail in back is fun. But, I just know this isn't something I'd ever reach for. 
Even with the cardigan I couldn't love it. Then I spotted a hole in the seam of the cowl and that sealed the deal for me. 

Verdict ::
Cowl Neck Knit Top - RETURNED 

Market & Spruce || Zansia Curved Hem Knit Top
I paired this top with a pair of running shoes, as I could totally see me tossing this on as I get ready for the school drop off line. I'm a fan of most of Market & Spruce's items, and a sucker for stripes. The gray and white is very much "me." The hem is great, and I love that it's a little bit longer. But, I do have a similar top that's just a little lighter weight than this one. 

Verdict :: 
Market & Spruce Curved Hem Knit Top - RETURNED
SPANX Faux Leather Leggings - RETURNED 

Though my original thought of 5/5 ending up being a 2/5, I'm thrilled with my keeper pieces. 
Thoughts?? Did I keep the right pieces? Did I send back something I should have kept?! Drop me a line in the comments and let me know. 

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A Mammoth Weekend

A few years ago we visited Mammoth (Julia wasn't even a sparkle in our eyes), we hiked several trails, fell in love with the place, and decided we needed to return when there was snow on the mountain.

This year for Christmas (I realize it's January 24, bare with me), I requested that rather than Scott and I give gifts to each other we go somewhere instead. And that's precisely what we did. Christmas morning Scott surprised me with a weekend retreat to Mammoth. To enhance the already stellar surprise, Scott was able to get his parents and my mom to join in our fun.
To my delight, we immediately found a gorgeous mural to stave my appetite for pretty walls.
We then set to work, soaking up every mountain moment.

Marcus and I started with ski lessons. Full admission, I've never skied a day in my life prior to this trip, but it's always been something I've wanted to try. It's safe to say, Marcus was entirely better than me, but we both had a blast.
Let's pretend his eyes are open.
After Marcus' lesson he was fairly spent, so he headed back to the cabin while Scott and I took a couple more runs down the mountain. Bless him for being so patient with my beginner self.
Meanwhile, Julia was totally content to just walk around in the snow, pick up clumps, and toss at anyone within her sight.
No mountain trip is complete without a visit to a tube park. Not to mention, I really wanted Julia to do more than just pick up handfuls of snow.
Marcus, Scott, Grandma Kathy, and I made several trips down the hill.
Julia rode a tube merry-go-round a few times.
But, ultimately, Julia's greatest joy was just waddling around in the snow and attempting to slide down a mound of packed snow.
There was a gondola ride to the top of Mammoth, to which Marcus kept proclaiming, "This is SO cool!"
And more infatuation with the powdery white stuff.
Each evening Scott would start a fire in the fireplace (something we don't have in our home), and both kids would be put into a trance by the flickering flames and welcomed heat.
While the snow was great, the skiing was amazing, the tubing fun, the part of the trip that I hope sticks in the kids memory the most is what became our evening routine...
Everyone gathered around the table, playing games, telling stories, laughing, and joking.

During our trip, I had every intention of taking better photos with my big camera (I actually brought it along!), I didn't pick it up once. So, while the photos aren't the best, dang, those memories made sure are priceless.

In all... Best. Christmas. Gift. Ever.


Fix #19

With the ushering in of the new year I didn't make any real resolutions, nor did I select my "word" for the year. Rather, I've kind of made it my goal to actually wear some of the clothes that are in my closets and dressers. Athlesiure wear is nice, but it's time to start reaching for my "real" clothes.

Most days I'll roll up to Kinder drop-off in my running pants/short and some shirt I've obtained from one race or another. But, I have all these other clothes, just hanging, or folded. What's the point of buying them if they are never worn? Plus. There's a mom at drop off with triplets, and she's always put together every morning by 7:45. If she can do it with three 5-year olds, I sure as hell can with two kiddos.

That said, I asked Raquel for some wardrobe staples: basic tees; as well as a good neutral duster (preferably in a cream color), camo leggings, and a good everyday pair of brown booties.

Once again, Raquel crushed my requests. The entire fix could be combined into two outfits, and I really loved it all.

Let's take a peek at the threads, shall we?

Mix by 41 Hawthorn || Trumer Essential Knit Top
Spanx || Layce Printed Legging
RD Style || Harleen Contrast Tipping Duster Cardigan
DV8 || Sonja Bootie
Where do I even begin with this outfit?
Let's start with the Essential Knit Top. Ok, so I realize it's a really, really basic white tee. And I'm sure there are several out there I could add to my closet. But. This one is so soft. The v-neck is my favorite neckline. The cut is just perfect. The length is exactly what I want. I can bend over and my midriff stays covered. It's precisely what I *need.* And, it was delivered right to my door. So.... 

Moving on to the Spanx leggings. Let me repeat that: SPANX LEGGINGS. Need I say more?! The leggings hit right at my ankle. They suck in all the fluffy parts. The waist-line is true, and doesn't slip down when I'm moving about. These are also a thicker fabric than any other leggings I own, which means when they stretch they don't seem see-through. Plus, I'm officially on the camo print train. Give me these every day of the week.

The cardi. HOLY BUCKETS. It's truly the softest cardigan I have in my closet. It has this silky feel that is just delicious. It's also not super heavy, which is precisely the kind of top-layering-piece I fully appreciate and need. The black trim detail at the cuff and opening took this relatively simple cardi up a notch. 

Lastly, the DV8 booties are the richest Cognac color, which I love, and the zippers on both side of the boot are such a great, fun detail to give these boots a bit of a boost in the character department. 

I shed the cardigan to get a better look at the knit top.

I swapped out the Mix by 41 Hawthorn Knit Top....

Nine Britton || Brock Varsity Stripe Knit Top
The color is this charcoal-y shade of gray that I've been gravitating towards a lot lately. The pink stripes at the sleeves are the cutest pops of color. And that v-neck is my fav. 
Toss the cardi on and the outfit is complete. 

And, taking a closer look at the booties...

Let's talk keeper pieces. Originally, I wanted to keep all five. But, I took pictures of the pieces on, took an honest look at them on, as well as what I have in my closet. Then I narrowed it down. 

Mix by 41 Hawthorn || Trumer Essential Knit Top (the white tee) :: KEEPER 
I desperately needed a good white tee in my closet, and I simply could not part with this one. It checked all the boxes for a staple tee.
Spanx || Lacye Printed Legging :: KEEPER 
I could not have asked for a better pair of camo leggings. 
RD Style || Harleen Contrast Tipping Duster Cardigan :: KEEPER
If you are searching for a good cream color cardigan, PIN THIS and then BEG your stylist for it. Gah! It is just so good.
DV8 || Sonja Bootie :: RETURN
At first I wanted to keep these. But, upon further examination of my closet, I had to remind myself I already have a pair of booties quite similar to these, and those aren't ready to be retired just yet. 
Nine Britton || Brock Varsity Stripe Knit Top (gray top with pink stripes) :: RETURN
Such a cute top, but it was cut just a little short for me. Had it been just a bit longer I would have put it in my closet immediately.  

Thoughts??? What pieces did you love? Did I make a mistake returning the gray top and booties?? 

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A Little Bit of Marcus

Now that a majority of our days are spent with Marcus in full-time Kindergarten (7:45AM-2:45PM), my camera roll may appear a bit Julia-heavy. I mean, it only makes sense. More often than not, our week day adventures are an all-girls party. I've asked Marcus a few times if he'd like to play hooky and join us, but he loves school, and always opts for that.
All that said, I felt it was time to do a little update on Marcus, he's been long overdue for one. He has little quirks and phrases and sayings and antics I don't ever want to forget.
Perhaps the most saddening thing (for me), is just the other day I called Marcus by the nickname I've given him since before he was born: Monkey. He turned to me very defensively and said, "Don't call me Monkey. I don't like it." That stung, more than just a little. It's the pet name I've used for over five years. Refraining from calling him that is going to be so hard in so many ways.
School is Marcus' favorite place to be. I'm very curious to see if this continues as he gets older. He loves doing his math homework, but isn't too fond of his language arts (this is the exact opposite of me). He also speaks of computer lab with great enthusiasm.
A descriptor, give by his teacher during parent-teacher conferences, is "old man." At first I didn't quite understand. But, the more I thought about it, the more it makes sense. Marcus is very particular (much like his dad). He can be very serious. And, he is very literal. Not too long ago Scott was pointing out a restroom to Marcus and said, "Look at that bathroom over there!" Marcus' reply, "That's not a bathroom. There's no bath tub in it. Call that a restroom." Scott and I just looked at each other like, what is even happening?! He wasn't wrong.
Tolerance and kindness are two very accurate nouns used to describe Marcus. He puts up with so much more from his little sister than I ever would.
Marcus is also has a very tender soul. He cares deeply for others, and he is easily hurt when others are not kind or fair; he is very much a rule follower. He wears his heart on his sleeve. Just this week we got rid of our highchair. The night it was collected he was so distraught, to the point of being inconsolable, at bedtime. He told me he was sad the chair was gone. I asked him to elaborate, and he explained he really wanted to donate the chair. My heart broke. I had to explain (multiple times) that the chair no longer properly worked, and we couldn't possibly give it to another family in an unsafe condition. Only after telling him the chair had served both he and his sister, and many memories were made with it, he calmed down.
It sounds silly, but Marcus is also to the point where he can bathe almost completely on his own. After a half a decade of doing the bathing, hair washing, drying, and lotion-ing, and pajama-putting-on, this kind of seems like a big step. While he's grown in many ways, he's still a less than stellar eater, and we're constantly reminding him to eat his lunches and dinners. I have no idea how he survives on such little food.
Baseball seems to be the sport Marcus gravitates towards. At least for now. I'd like to think I'm not biased in my opinion that he's quite good at fielding and batting. Though, there is still work to be had with his running technique. He's also a pretty good little swimmer, and I can't wait to see his skills improve this summer.
Being outside is at the top of Marcus' list of favorites. From tide pools to hiking trails, once he's there he doesn't want to leave. Riding bikes and skidding tires are afternoon favorites. Along with improving his skateboard and Razor scooter, Razoer 360, and Ezy-Roller skills. Hands on activities, like science experiments as well as arts and crafts projects are also high up on the list of favorites. And, lately, board games have become a bigger interest.
There isn't a better little boy or big brother I know.
I cannot believe just how lucky we are to have such a sweet soul.