Gulf Shores Trip

For the last few years, almost my whole family( just missing an aunt and uncle) have been going on family trips. The reason? My mom is a twin and those two with their kids and husbands would go on family trips. It ended at the end of the 1980s and my dad missed how close the family was. My dad died in 2015 and to honor him, my sisters and I wanted to restart them. We started small with just us and my mom, then added my aunt and now my cousins too. So we have spouses and kids which makes it bigger. This year it was my job to plan the trip. I picked Gulf Shores, Alabama because I had never been but heard good things about it.

Here is how the trip went:


We decided to fly in to Mobile which is about 1 hour away. My family is mostly in the Missouri/Illinois area but I am not there. We are the only ones who flew. When my husband, son and I landed, we went to a brewery in Mobile called Haight Blue. The beer selection was very small but the place was cool and had a nice view. We then stopped to buy some groceries and drove to the house we rented.

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Haight Blue Brewery

The house we rented looked small but it was huge. It had 10 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. Plus a wraparound screened porch. The best part? Private beach in the bay. When my son saw that, he immediately got in the water and was ready to play. The house also had a private dock across the street with a slide.

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The house


My husband forgot his swimsuit so we went in to actual Gulf Shores to get him one. We did lunch at Tacky Jacks and then went to Big Beach Brewing. Big Beach has a ton of beers. Very laid back, we really enjoyed it. Afterwards, I met up with my mom, aunt, sister and uncle to go on a dolphin boat tour. The tour was called Sunny Lady and we saw some many dolphins. My son loved seeing them all. The boat captain even had a parrot that the kids could pet.


My little family did family pictures on the beach in the morning. We used Orange Beach Family Photography. I liked her a lot. The session was a quick mini one but she got some good photos.  When we got back to our rented house, it was a lazy day. Most people just hung out on the porch or played in the water. My son had sand toys so he played on the beach a lot. One time when we were in the water, a dolphin swam up and was about 10 feet away from my son. One of my sisters and I decided to go parasailing. She went when she was like 10 in Mexico and I had never been. We loved it! It was probably my favorite part of the whole trip. It was so much fun. When we were in the air, we were able to see schools of sting rays and a tiger shark.


Time to go home. We got some more beach time in before we packed up the house and left. It was a quick trip but a good one.

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Private Beach


June Updates

The month of June was over way too fast. I spent most of it off with some professional development here and there, jury duty and a vacation which I will cover on another post. So let’s update.


One of my favorite June traditions is a free cross-country race series called Flashmob. There are always prizes and I get to run in places I normally do not. Afterwards, my family always goes to this Mexican restaurant we like that is in the area.

I also competed in the No Label 5K. This is a father’s day race that my husband and I like to do since it is stroller friendly. My husband is coming back from an ankle injury so he did a walk/run and I did a nice easy run because my legs were sore.

Summer Playtime

My son went to school three days a week until I was done with all my trainings and then he is off for the rest of summer, or the first week in August. We saw Secret Life of Pets 2 as a family one day but we also went to some other $1 movies. A lot of the theaters in our area does a summer series where every week they pick an older movie and play it for a $1. My son really enjoys that.

We went one day to go pick blueberries. My son really enjoyed it and enjoyed taste testing his findings. We also went camping one weekend with our family. It was hot but wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.

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Camp Life

We have been going to many Storytimes. Mainly at a book store or at a toy store. We are also in three summer reading programs.

We have also been on playdates. We went to a trampoline park, a science center and swimming at a friends house.

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Science Center where we got to hold and pet many animals.

One of the last things we did was go to a minor league baseball game. It was fun but we left during the 5th inning because it started pouring.

So that is our June.

July 2019 Stitch Fix Review

My latest Fix got here a few days before the July 4th weekend. I got a lot of good items but after opinions and double checking, I only kept 1 item.

Here is how Stitch Fix works:

1. Fill out your Style Profile. This gives detail on your style, sizes, budget and anything else like a link to your pinterest board.

2. Once you have “ordered” your box, they will send you 5 items from a personal stylists.  It is a $20 styling fee which is applied as a credit toward anything you keep. I actually have a Style Pass(I have no idea how I got it) which means I pay $49 for the whole year instead and I get a one-time $49 credit.

3. Try everything on. They send you Style Cards with recommendations on how to wear your outfit.  You have three days to decide what you do and do not want.

4. Buy what you like and return the rest. If you keep all 5 items, you get 25% off your entire purchase.  Don’t like something, they send you a pre-paid mailing bag to drop in the mailbox.  It is free shipping.

I always get feedback from my husband and two friends through text.

Here is what I got and everything is Stitch Fix that I am wearing:

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Pink Clover Pallas Knot Front Knit Top ($28) and Liverpool Johnny Short ($68)

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I almost kept this shirt. 2/3 people liked it but ultimately I decided against it because I am not the biggest floral fan, yeah I own some floral pieces but I don’t need a whole wardrobe of it and I am not a fan of the front knot. I think it draws attention to my tummy which is my least favorite area.

I did keep the shorts though. I liked the color and they fit so well. I can dress them up or wear them more relaxed.

Papermoon Almeida Crochet Detail Blouse ($42) and same shorts

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I did not like this top. The top is very sheer and I refuse to wear layers in the hot summer. The top was also a little too tight in the bust area so I couldn’t really move my arms.

Colette Laraine Back Detail Knit Top ($34) and same shorts

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I liked this top but it hugged in the wrong places. I also have a shirt that is very similar except it is navy and white and half sleeves.

Mia Jazzlyn Slide Sandal ($39)

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I really liked these sandals and they were comfy but they were too small. I could exchange them for a bigger size but I worried the slide part would be too loose then. So I sent them back.

Want to try it? Go here.


May Barbella Box Review

When I saw the spoiler for the May barbella box, I knew I was going to get it. They had a product in it that I really wanted to try. Barbella Box is $49.99 a month but you can skip if you want. You only have a few days into the month to skip though.

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  1. Fleo El Torro Leggings in Indigo Blue ($69.99)

Just by getting the box, I saved $20 on some Fleo leggings which never go on sale. This color was an exclusive for Barbella and it is a beautiful blue. I haven’t worked out in them because it is summer in Texas so I would die but when I tried them on, they are so soft. They are thick so they will be good in the winter. I have wanted to try these leggings since they came out so this was a no-brainer for me.

2. Lesser Evil Paleo Puffs

I haven’t tried these yet but might give to my husband or let him do a test first. It says it is made from coconut oil and coconut is something I truly hate. So if he says it tastes like coconut, then I know it will be 1000 times worst for me.

3. Hi Love Travel Fannie Pack ($42)

I grew up in the 90s so had my fair share of fannie packs but $42?!?!? Seems crazy to me. I know they are handy and convenient and music festival goers love them but no not for me.

Things not shown:

Pulse Skin Care Lip Balm ($4)- Haven’t tried it yet as I still have others I am currently using.

Good Wipes Down There Wipes- Not sure the necessity of these and I won’t use them.


While the other items in the box were eh, the leggings really made up for it and so worth it in my opinion. Want to try it? Go here.

March-May Updates

It is officially summer break for me and I am so excited! I do have a couple trainings in June but for the most part, I am done. So might as well catch up.


In Houston, Rodeo season is a pretty big deal. In March I went to two days. My whole family saw Turnpike Troubadours while my girlfriends and I saw Panic at the Disco the very next day. I love Rodeo season and my son keeps asking to take him back. He loves the show but also walking around and looking at animals.

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Rodeo Time

I also went and saw the musical Anastasia with some friends. It was so nice to see a movie that I loved growing up put in musical form. The costumes were amazing! It was different from the movie but no big deal.

For a big part of March, my son was really sick and it lasted for a couple days which means my husband and I also became very sick so that was not fun at all.


We started the month with our dogs 14th birthday. Not that he cares but our son was excited about it. We then had the Texas Children’s Hospital Fun Run. We do the 1K but the after party is so much fun. They have snacks, games, booths, and lots of inflatable climbing things. My son had so much fun.

We then had our sons 4th birthday. We don’t but many gifts. He got a book, an outfit and then he took him to the mall to go to the Lego Store and the Disney Store. He could pick out one toy from each place. My son picked out a Batman play set that the Lego workers recommended for him and then an action figure from the Disney Store. This was so easy and something we will do every year.

My son was invited to his friends party and it was a good old McDonald’s party. Lots of nostalgia and the kids had a great time. I also had my friends baby shower in April.

For Easter we went to a few events. We started with a gymnastics place that had an egg hunt and open gym. My son loved playing at the gymnastics studio. We then went to a brewery for a small egg hunt. The weekend of Easter, we went to a play date at a friends house, and an egg hunt at another brewery. On Easter we went out to eat and the restaurant had an egg hunt and then to another brewery for an egg hunt.  Yes, a lot of egg hunts but my son is not one that has to collect them all. He is good with just getting 1-3 eggs and then will say he is done. One of the breweries we went to, my son didn’t get any eggs because the older kids took them all. He found an empty egg and was completely fine with that. So he didn’t really get many eggs and he was fine with it. At two of the breweries, there were beer tokens in the eggs and to him that was the best.

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Easter Egg Hunts


We started May with my sons party. We had it at a rock gym this time around. He seemed to really enjoy it.

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Party Time

I also raced in a Cinco De Mayo 5K. My time was not what I wanted. My husband didn’t run because he injured himself in March and hasn’t been running or doing anything with jumping.

I threw a baby shower for a friend and met my husband for dinner afterwards. The shower went over well. I don’t really enjoy throwing showers because I am not fancy nor do I like shower games or overly fancy showers. So when I throw one it is more just relaxed. I do not like them but I keep volunteering to throw them.

For Memorial Day weekend, we started at the zoo to learn about lions and then went to the pool with our friends.  Lastly, I did complete the Murph over the weekend. Murph is a workout that consists of 1 mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 squats and then another 1 mile run. The workout gets it name in honor of Michael Patrick “Murph” Murphy who was a United States Navy SEAL officer.


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FoodStirs reviews

I have two Foodstir reviews today. We did two of our boxes almost back to back to get caught up. So every two months we get a FoodStirs box. Foodstirs is a baking subscription box and if you are on the plan, they send you a box every other month. February was a Valentines theme box while April was an Earth day theme. They include everything you need for the dry ingredients. They also include the decorations. I just needed to provide the eggs, butter, and yogurt.

February Box

For February we had chocolate brownies with icing in the center. We did melted chocolate topping and pink icing. The cupcake holders were super cute and my son really liked them. As you can see from our icing, it wasn’t the best. The reason: I didn’t let the brownies cool before I did the icing because we were running out of time. The brownies were very yummy and my son loved them. He really liked eating the mix as his face was covered in chocolate. Pretty easy to make. We kept the cupcake holders so we can reuse them.

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April Box

April was Earth cake pops. It was an Apple spice cake. As you can see, our decorating sucked but I now know how to make cake pops. My son didn’t really like these and I am not a fan of apple spice cake in general. My husband is not really a sweets fan so this one went to waste. Of the two recipes I reviewed today, this one was harder to make. It was nice that the cake pop sticks are reusable so we will try again.

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Want to try Foodstirs? I don’t get anything for this but you can go here.

April 2019 Stitch Fix Review

April is almost over, well like in 8 days. This month I had a Stitch Fix and now have time to review it.

Here is how Stitch Fix works:

1. Fill out your Style Profile. This gives detail on your style, sizes, budget and anything else like a link to your pinterest board.

2. Once you have “ordered” your box, they will send you 5 items from a personal stylists.  It is a $20 styling fee which is applied as a credit toward anything you keep. I actually have a Style Pass(I have no idea how I got it) which means I pay $49 for the whole year instead and I get a one-time $49 credit.

3. Try everything on. They send you Style Cards with recommendations on how to wear your outfit.  You have three days to decide what you do and do not want.

4. Buy what you like and return the rest. If you keep all 5 items, you get 25% off your entire purchase.  Don’t like something, they send you a pre-paid mailing bag to drop in the mailbox.  It is free shipping.

I always get feedback from my husband and two friends through text.

Here is what I got:

Everything is Stitch Fix except the shorts. Those are mine, they are my favorite and I have had them since 2003. Oh and I took these pictures on a Friday night after work which is why my hair looks like this mess.

Market & Spruce Ezide Textured Print Top $58

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This top is cute and it fit great. It was really comfy too. My friends loved this top. However, I sent it back. The back of the shirt was pretty sheer so I couldn’t really wear it without a cardigan or something and since I live in Houston, I don’t really want layers in the summertime.

Skies are Blue Asa Striped Ponte Blazer $78

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This is a cute blazer and would look cute with a pair of skinny jeans. My husband really liked this blazer while my friends did not. I returned it because while I liked it, I am not a blazer person. I think it would just end up hanging in my closet all day.

Colette Romey Cold Shoulder Knit Top $34

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The fabric was really soft but it was really short. The sides of the shirt go to right where my waistband is and I really hate short shirts. I also do not really like cold shoulder tops. Also, it looks like I am not wearing this top correctly but I swear I am. Therefore, I sent it back.

French Grey Troian Brushed Knit Dress $48

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Everyone loved it including me. This was a winner. The fabric is to die for soft. The pattern is cute and I like the colors. I have already worn it to a baby shower. It fits great and it is really comfortable too. Highly recommend this dress.

Want to try Stitch Fix? Go here.

Houston Marathon 2019

I finally have time to sit down and right my review for the 2019 Houston Marathon. This was my 9th time running that marathon. Did I plan to run Houston that many times? No. Why do I keep doing it? My friends are running it and I train with them so might as well. Plus it is Houston, I live here so it is a convenient location. They always( well mostly) on Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend.


This is the day the expo opens. I am however at work. I do not take off early or anything like that. Instead I work the full day. That night though is different. The girls I run with have a tradition of having an Italian Girls Night. My best friend hosts and we all bring something like bread, salad, dessert, etc. So we have some type of pasta to do our carb loading. We all sit around, talk, catch up, etc. It is always a lot of fun.


This is the day we go to the expo. Even though my husband hasn’t run the race in years, he still likes walking around the expo. The expo has different companies that come out with products and some races come out to get to people to sign up for their race. They also usually have fun booths like photo booths or giveaways. The sport teams are there too with little things for the kids. This year I was really hungry during the expo so I only ended up buying these headbands that I like called Sweatybands.

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Wearing a Turkey Trot shirt to scare my competitors

That night I did something differently. I slept over at my best friends house. In the past, I have driven myself, driven with my husband, taken a taxi or carpooled with a friend. This year we decided it might be best to sleep at my friends. That way I don’t wake up my family super early in the morning and don’t have to worry about my car.


Woke up and got ready and debated what to wear for awhile. Basically it was like 33 degrees at the start but would be about 50 when we ended. I decided to go with crops, long sleeve and gloves(free from the expo). I also texted my husband to bring me a tank so I might switch later in the race. It was going to be sunny so I have my new running sunglasses with me.

We get to the race and the race meeting place is inside at the GRB Convention Center, same place as the expo. It is really nice because you are stretching and putting your bag away but are inside so protected from the elements. We saw all our friends, hugged and said good luck to everyone. Then it was time to go to our corral. This is going to get a lot of we. My best friend (and training buddy) and I were in C Corral. C Corral was a mess. I have never seen it like this. Basically a lot of people couldn’t get in because the corral was too small for the amount of people in the corral so they were sending people to the back of the D corral. We got in but we still didn’t start the race until almost 40 minutes after the race had started.

We were running with a woman who was running the half marathon and after two miles she said she was going to try to run with us until their turn which is mile 8. We said sure. She asked us if we finish every race together and our answer was no because we usually split before mile 19. So this year we decided we would run the whole race together. I didn’t have a time goal but my friend wanted under 5 hours because she hasn’t done that in awhile.

My husband comes out and cheers with my son every few miles. He is at mile 3, mile 6, mile 10, mile 15 and mile 21 plus the finish line. He did forget my tank because I did ask for it at mile 21 but I was fine. I gave him my gloves at mile 21 and then just rolled up my sleeves. My friends parents were out there 3 different times with food. They have peanut butter filled pretzels which are just so delicious when I run. We also had our friends husband who we only saw once but he always has treats too.

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Mile 17

Once we got to mile 18, we really realized that we could finish the race together. We talked the entire time or complained whatever. She had a lot of people on the course cheering for her (her work is on the course so coworkers came out). We saw a couple of friends cheering and I was just so excited to get to the mile 24 beer tents to see my favorite brewery Karbach and hear their loud cheers (it helps that I know some of them).

One thing I do is I have a list of names and I dedicate a mile to different people. Mile 25 to the finish is always dedicated to my dad and I normally cry a little and this race was no different. It was real quick and then over it. My friend and I were getting to the finish line and we had come up with a plan for the finish at mile 2. I asked if she was still game for it and she wanted to double check if I could do it and I told her I could, I felt great. So a little bit from the finish line, she jumped on my back and I ran the finish line. It was the perfect way to finish the race.

One you finish, they give you water and your medal. You go through a maze of getting your picture taken plus little food like bananas and chocolate milk(which I loved at the finish). Then you go get your shirt and beer mug. I then always go get my bag and head to the food line to get something. Then I go find my husband and son. This part takes away because you always run into friends and they want to take pictures. I also saw my former student and her mom volunteering so I went to them and talked to them.

Once I left and found my family, we went to the little store that had deep discounts and I bought a hat and bought my son a shirt that he can wear in like 5 years. We went home so I could shower/bath and then it was time for all the food.

It was such a great day with the best weather!

February Updates

Ugh, I need to better about updating.

Running/Working Out

I started the month by running in the Hot Chocolate Run. I did the 15k which is about 9.3 miles. The course wasn’t the most exciting but the after race was great. You get a hot chocolate of course but also a huge mug filled with goodies which you can see below. It was fun and I got to run with friends.

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Some of my friends and I planned to do a run for the Trail Riders coming in town. Rodeo season is huge here and before the rodeo starts, they do a race and a rodeo parade. Trail Riders come from all over to be in the parade. To get to the parade, they sleep at the park I run at and then Saturday morning leave for about 5 mile ride to downtown. My friends and I started at a cupcake shop, ran to a spot to watch them and then ran back to the cupcake shop for cupcakes. My husband and son also joined us.

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Trail Riders coming in town


One of our friends had a going away party at a kid-friendly restaurant which was nice for our kids to play. We got there early to eat and didn’t get to see our friend for too long because we had tickets to go see Sesame Street Live. Sesame Street Live was short but my son had a lot of fun. He was engaged and excited to see the characters live. We were cheap and didn’t do floor seats but my son had no desire to be on the floor and I heard you can’t see anyway.

For Valentine’s Day, we had been putting hearts on our sons door since Feb. 1st of reasons why we love him. We also got him a few more Lego mini-figures because that is what he loves the most. We went out to dinner too and just had a relaxing night.

We also saw Lego Movie 2 in theaters. We (the adults) prefer a theater that serves food and drinks. My son loved the movie and has been asking to see it multiple times.

We had another friend move this month and got to go to two new breweries because of the move. We went to Holler Brewery and Eureka Heights. Both have really good beer, they both have outside space and food trucks. Holler also sells really yummy popcorn and Eureka Heights is huge. We enjoyed both of the breweries.

We ended the month by seeing Kasey Musgraves at the Rodeo. My son loves the rodeo and was so excited. Since Kasey performed a weeknight, we just went to the rodeo and not to walk around the grounds. She put on a great show.

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January 2019 updates

Usually January is an extremely long feeling month but this year it went by really quick. I guess it helped that we didn’t go back to school until the 7th, which is nice. I hate going back the 2nd.

Running/Working Out:

The Houston Marathon was this month so for the first part I was tapering which means I do not run as much. I did enjoy a nice run with friends one morning with a really yummy breakfast afterwards.

The Houston marathon basically takes up one weekend and I will have a separate post about that.

This month I also started a Yoga challenge. Well, sort of. I love the youtube videos of Yoga with Adrienne. Every January she does a “30 days of yoga.” Since I am not running as much, I do maybe yoga twice a week instead of once. Even though I don’t do it everyday, I keep up the challenge until I am done, like I recently did Day 9.


We started this month by our monthly trip to Target. Yes, I limit myself to once a month. We were looking at the holiday decorations and my son saw some wrapping paper he had to have. I saw it was 75% off so bought it. I was very happy to see it was actually 90% off when we were at the register so it was really cheap, like 20 cents cheap.

While on Winter Break, we met up with a friend and her son for storytime and lunch. This playdate turned into an almost 5 hour playdate. The kids had a blast.

We also met up with some friends at a brewery called Fetching Lab. They recently moved into a place because they were just off a dirt road in a residential area. It was cool because the next door neighbor raised goats and would bring the babies over. It was nice though to see that they are growing and being successful that they had to move to a building in town. Plus they have a lot more beer now.

My mom was in town for a few hours in January so we met up with her for dinner. I wish we could have spent more time with her but she came the week we went back to school and I really didn’t need to take a day off just when we got back to work.

Eli and I met up with some friends to go to the zoo on MLK Jr. day. It was a pretty day and nice to be outside. We of course had to feed the giraffes.

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As a family we met up with some of the same brewery friends to go to another brewery called Valliesons. We have been meaning to try them so we wer glad to get the chance. They have a pretty nice little area for kids to run around and a lot of good beer too.

We ended the month by going to Twsited Acre Brewery just as a family. This is a new smallish brewery but good beer, and very friendly. We will defiantly go back.


Pete’s Dragon: We watched the new movie as a family about a week ago. My son absolutely loved it. Really cute, sad but with a happy ending in a way.

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate: This is a historical fiction book about a family of kids in TN who were basically kidnapped and put in a orphange. It goes back it forth from the 1940s to modern days. It is based on of the true story about the Tennessee Children’s Home Society which kidnapped children and “adopted” them to rich families while making a profit. After I finished the book, I researched the Children’s home, the lady and charge and some of the famous clients. I was hooked to this book and loved it!