So another thing I love is shopping. Who knew?! Considering I haven’t actually shopped for myself in let’s see 3 years and 9 months…. (with the exception of my birthdays) Ever since I became a mom, I have bought essentially nothing to treat myself (Full disclosure: I’m talking about clothes, not chocolate!) But back in the day, I used to love strolling the halls of Queens Center Mall with my high school gal pals. I could spend hours there. Everything was beautiful, everything was shiny and new. I wanted it all! Of course, I never had a high paying job in high school, so I could only afford a few choice pieces from H&M or Forever 21, say, but even so, they made me so happy!

I was reminded of this today when I met up with my grown up gal pals (Sigh… MUST we age?) at Garden State Plaza. No kids, no distractions, just good ol’ retail therapy. I snagged some basic necessities like leggings and a shirt from Uniqlo and super cute earrings from Aeropostale (Going out of Business Sale! Had to stop!) Lastly, from Macy’s, an adorable replacement for a particular shirt dress I used to wear all the time that I have been mourning ever since it got a giant hole in the armpit (What?) and I had to lay it to rest. 

So, I decided to play fashion blogger for a day. Those of you who are into fashion, this one’s for you! 

And now, for your viewing pleasure, today’s purchases! (As soon as I started taking these photos, I immediately regretted this post…This stuff is time consuming! Props to all you legit fashion bloggers out there. Also, sorry for the poor lighting and totally unprofessional background and modeling skills. I’ll call it…haphazard chic…)

Red and white plaid shirt dress by Ultra Flirt (Made in China. My people!) from Macy’s $16.99. (Originally $39 what what!) Black Heat Tech Pile Lined leggings (so comfy and soft!) from Uniqlo $14.90. (Is the very best thing about New Jersey no tax on clothes, or what?) Would go great with black or brown booties, but unfortunately I don’t own any, so I had to make due with these knee high boots from Payless (bought these too long ago to remember the price). Necklace: home made! (Oh, whoops, it’s backwards here. See next outfit)

My absolute favorite fall color is maroon (or is this burgundy? Some expert, please correct me) Supima Cotton V Neck Long Sleeve T: Uniqlo $14.90. Jeans: The Gap (also too long ago) Pro Mama Tip: High waisted jeans are your new best friend! Booties: Forever 21 (knowing Forever 21, probably like $20)

Finally, Aeropostale earrings! Each set was $2.99! I better not lose any of these… I am sick and tired of losing my earrings. 

Phew! That’s a wrap! What do you think guyssss?! How’d I do? 

Just Another Day

5:15 pm:

I’m hiding out in the kitchen away from my kids eating gluten free chocolate chip cookies I made last night (I avoid wheat as much as I can because I have a mild allergy). I’m flustered and jittery and impatient and chocolate is helping me cling onto some semblance of sanity. This happens a lot. I’ve gone through about 8/10 of the day, expended dizzying amounts of physical and emotional energy since the break of dawn, and I feel like I’m approaching some type of breaking point (or maybe “not giving a sh*t point” is a better assessment ). The kids are fighting, I’m exhausted, the dishes are still where I left them (where are those little elves when you need them?) I really shouldn’t be staying up so many nights watching Jimmy Fallon on YouTube. This is basically my own fault. Can we end this day early? Can I just hit sleep mode on both my kids now? Can I call in sick?

7:55 pm

I made it! 

Y drifted quickly to sleep in her crib without so much as a whimper (the past few days have been VERY different, but today I got lucky!)

T helped me put away about five puzzle pieces out of the thousands strewn across the living room floor (Every time without fail, he is overcome with exhaustion the instant I utter the word “clean”). I read the five books he requested, flossed and brushed his teeth [I’m super grateful that ever since I explained what the dentist said during our last visit – that he has a little dark spot on one tooth that will become a cavity (or in more appropriate terms, a black, yucky hole/monster) if he doesn’t floss and brush thoroughly, he doesn’t put up a fight!], prayed with him, and snuggled with him until he fell asleep (5 minutes BEFORE 8! Whoa!). Have I mentioned bedtime is my favorite part of the day? Being that I’ve been so tired all day, I would love to cut the vicious cycle and go to sleep now. I don’t think I have that luxury, though, because there are toys and shoes and undoubtedly small bits of food scattered here and there, and as I’ve mentioned, my elves seem to be on vacation. So, here I go! Off to clean the same dishes and the same floors I cleaned yesterday! (If I am giving you the impression I am a very organized and tidy person, that impression is wrong. I will be doing my usual quickly-throw-everything-into-containers clean up; nothing crazy) Maybe a little chocolate will make this all easier…

Road Trip

My daughter wants to type this blog post. She’s sitting on my lap PreSSGING al

l the fun buttons!! I think she has a future in writing 😉

I have proceeded to lay her upside down on my lap. That worked for about 2 seconds. She’s up again and I’m holding her on my shoulders. Ah, parenthood.

So, this past Labor Day weekend, my dad and I drove my little ones to the “home place” – my mother’s parents’ old house in North Carolina. What could be like an 8 hour drive with the usual two short meal + bathroom breaks turned into about a 12 hour drive (we made 5 or 6 stops). That’s to be expected, though, with a 3 year old and a 1 year old! We had a few challenging moments, but no major meltdowns on the way down or back up, so I consider it a huge WIN!! I’m so glad we did it. I’ve been wanting to take that drive with my dad for a while now. We bonded over political conversations and the Frozen soundtrack on repeat. And it may very well have been the last time we got to see the house, as it is now for sale.

It’s a beautiful, red brick ranch style house. Three bedrooms, two bathrooms, huge basement, and an attic. In its prime it had the most cozy, comfortable, right at home feeling. It hasn’t been lived in for a while, now, so it’s changed. Even so, the memories remain! My cousin and I doing somersaults and backflips over the living room sofa, playing the (now terribly out of tune) piano and opening presents (I think I asked for Barbies fourteen years in a row…) together with my aunts, playing pick up sticks with Grandmother in the dining room (she never let me cheat!), picking figs with my Granddaddy (I LOVE fresh figs!), making home videos with my uncles.

We spent a few hours out in the big, grassy, front yard (a nice change from the parking lot we usually play in). I showed my son how to climb the trees I used to climb and pet the caterpillars I used to pet (someone recently brought to my attention that the fuzzy caterpillars are often poisonous! Why did no one tell me this before?? I may have been risking my life and my child’s life this whole time…)

OF COURSE, we stopped to see my collective best friend – D’s entire family. A whole nother rush of memories! Sadly, we could only spend one day together, so I could only have like one half conversation with each individual… Also, my children have me running this way and that every 90 seconds, so it’s hard to carry an actual fluid conversation to begin with. Anyway, there’s always next time!

I took some cute photos along the way. Had to commemorate my children playing with all these wonderful people and beautiful animals we don’t normally get to see. Enjoy!













(Please excuse the quality. iPhone brags about their photos on billboards, but apparently those are taken by some markedly more skilled photographers than I!)