Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Shoes

Shoes...a very important thing to consider when going on a trip where you will be doing lots of walking. In preparation of my NYC trip, I knew I wanted some cute but comfy shoes, but where to find them? And what, exactly, was I looking for? I had no idea, but I knew they had to be comfortable...and not of the Asics variety, which is my norm.

Sheri has issues with her feet, and had to be very conscious about her shoe choices. She had found 2 pairs by a company called Jambu, and she was raving about how comfortable they were. And get of the pairs were RED. I LOVE RED! So I set off one day to accomplish some shopping and found a pair of Jambus that were not only completely comfy and super cute, but they were red too! I was in looooooove. However, I did not buy them, mainly because they were $119.00. Helllllooo...$119.00?!?!? For SHOES?!?!? I turned myself around and walked right out of there. (Side note: Sheri did not spend that much on hers either...she got a great deal and the style she got were significantly cheaper than the ones I fell in love with. Of course.)

So anyway, the week went on and I literally could not stop thinking about those shoes and how perfect they were for my feet. I have kind of wide feet, so the toe box on most cute shoes is never wide enough, thus rendering cute shoes uncomfortable for the most part. And I wanted a little heel, but nothing crazy, because we were going to be walking. A LOT. These, however, were perfect in every way...and need I say it again? They were RED.

Shiny red.


In the end, you can justify anything, right? I went back and tried them on a second time, and the lady working the shoe department at Macy's came over and ooohed and aaahhhed over them. I told her I was trying to justify spending the money, and it wasn't working. She proceeded to tell me (like any good saleslady would) that if I applied for a Macy's card, they were offering an additional 15% off that weekend, which mean that I'd get 35% off the shoes. Hmmmmm...that still left me spending more than I wanted to. But then I remembered that I had a $25.oo Visa gift card my friend Deetra had given me for my birthday. Now I was getting closer to a range I could deal with. And even better? A lady called on my Craig's List ad and wanted to buy my car seat at full price, which gave me another $35.00!!!! That was all I needed to hear. The shiny red Jambu "Camdens" would be mine!!! I LOVE these shoes...they are everything I thought they would be and more...I also found a pair of black shoes that I loved, and were also super comfortable. They were made by BOC for Born, and while I've never owned a pair of Borns before, I'd heard rave reviews. And let's face it people, if you want to skip the feet/knee/hip problems as you age, it's about time to be buying shoes that are good on your feet. I'll admit I'm as guilty as anyone else, wearing flip flops all summer...but I feel it now more than I ever have before. And with my hip issues (more details on that in a later post), I'm feeling much more inclined to spend a little more to take care of myself.

Anyway....I originally found these shoes in a muted orange. I fell in love with them immediately, but as is my M.O., I didn't buy them on the spot. I almost always give it a few days to see if I still have to have them, and if they're worth it to me. Sometimes I forget all about an item, meaning it clearly didn't make quite the impression on me that I thought it did, and sometimes I go back for it. This time, I still loved them...but by the time I got back to DSW, they were gone. GONE!!!! I did find a pair on clearance, but in my mom's size, so guess what she got for Mother's Day? She LOVED them and assured me they were like slippers on her feet. She also told me I would not regret spending the money on a pair.

You can imagine by now how bummed I was that I had waited. I just decided to get over it. (And that's when I found my Jambus.) But then I was online one day and decided to look at DSW online and guess what they had? The Borns in black, which is what I wanted (and needed) most anyway. They are so much more versatile than the orange, even though I loved the orange too... I had a $32.00 merchandise credit from a return I had made, so that brought them down to $27.00. I thought that was quite the deal! And since I'm now a DSW rewards member, I got free shipping too!

Now the bummer of this shoe scenario is that they were delivered the day after I left for NYC, so I didn't get to wear them in the Big Apple. (Can someone please explain to me why it took 5 days to ship something from the east side of Columbus to the west side???) I had to opt for black flip flops if I needed a black shoe...shame on me!!! But I have them now, and am very happy to have found 2 really cute pairs of shoes that are super comfy AND I got decent deals on them. And I'll tell you feet sure are thanking me!!!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Girl time in the Big Apple = A week of playing catch-up!

Last week, my two best friends and I went to New York City for the very first time. Of course, knowing that we would never forget our first trip to The Big Apple, we wanted to do it up right. After months of planning, June 9th was finally upon us...and my first real "girls trip" in the last 3 years.

I was so looking forward to the break from my everyday life, as well as some well-deserved time with Sheri & Sarah. And in case you aren't aware, though Sheri lives within 20 minutes of me, our dear Sarah lives all the way out west in we don't see her nearly enough! So, as I was saying, I was really looking forward to this trip. But the day before, I started to do what I now consider to be "normal" behavior for a mom...worrying incessantly, making lists upon lists so that everything is covered and taken care of while I'm gone, missing my munchkins and hubby like crazy before I've even left, and getting completely sad about all the things I'll miss when I'm away. It's nuts, I tell ya!!

But I pried myself away anyway, knowing I would have fun and knowing this was a break I needed. And am I glad I did! We had sooooo much fun exploring the city and taking silly pictures and riding the subway and seeing Wicked on Broadway and going out for sushi and dancing and meeting people and well, you get the picture! We figure we slept about 20 hours in the 5 days we were there. And you know what? It was well worth it!
Of course, on the day we were to leave, our flight got delayed not once, but twice. And then, at 10:30 p.m., they cancelled it. So we were stuck in NYC for another night. Never fear, sweetie rescued us by finding us a hotel room close to the airport in record time. We got a solid 6 hours of sleep that night before our flight left at 9:00 the next morning. BLISS!! But I'm tellin' you what...the lack of sleep from the past 4 days really caught up with us. We both fell asleep on both legs of our flight home, and I could barely get myself to baggage claim when we landed in Columbus. I felt like I'd been hit by a truck.

No worries though...a little Graeters at Sheri's and then I was good to go! I headed home, got changed, and headed right to Noah's ball game. And from that moment on, this week has been uncommonly crazy, especially since I lost Monday to the canceled flight.

This is the price I pay for 5 days with my BFFs...and that's completely fine. It was totally worth it!!

Friday, June 04, 2010

Schoooool's OUT for SUMMER!!!

Today at 2:00, the school year was officially over for Kendall...and we are SO EXCITED!!!! I can hardly believe she'll be in fourth grade next year, but I'm not going to get sidetracked by mourning the passing of the year...instead we're going to celebrate the beginning of summer break and a completely successful school year! Our summer break will begin tonight with pizza after Kendall's Taekwondo class (she tests for her orange belt tomorrow!), and then ice cream, of course! Graeter's, here we come!

On Monday, we head to our consultation with the orthodontist. Yes, it's that time already! We're going to see what she has to say and get a timeline planned. With all the orthodontia I had to endure, I can hardly see what this will entail, and more importantly, how much it's going to cost. I hear it's like having a new car. But WITHOUT the new car. :(

Then on Wednesday morning, I head to The Big Apple with Sheri and Sarah for some good girl bonding time with my BFFs! I haven't done a girl's trip in oh-so-long...I can hardly wait!!!! I've been getting myself all ready to go with an update to my wardrobe (which was sorely needed), new shoes, a new purse, and new makeup! I'll feel like a new me! And after touring the big city with lots of laughing and non-stop fun with my girls, I'll be ready to come back home and throw myself back into our summer here.

Here are some of the things we have planned for the summer:

1.) Kendall has volunteered to be our "art director" for summer break. She is planning at least 2 crafts for us to do every week. She's been printing them off the internet and tearing them out of magazines and putting them in a 3-ring binder. She loves planning activities and being the "teacher", so this should be lots of fun!

2.) I like to keep the kids from losing everything they've learned throughout the school year, so I pick up bridge workbooks and we'll do a page or two every day, just to keep things fresh. This also helps to make the back-to-school transition a little easier.

3.) Noah is starting to read, which is really exciting!!! He's been sounding out words like crazy, and not only when I ask, either. This will make the summer reading program at the library so much more fun! Kendall usually participates in the reading programs at both the London and Dublin libraries, because well, it's double the fun! I've already got her started, as I picked up 4 new books for her on Wednesday...starting with A Wrinkle in Time (one of my faves!), which she already finished! Now she's on to book five of the Harry Potter series...

4.) Noah has started T-ball and boy, is that fun! Barry is helping to coach, and says it's a riot to watch these 4 and 5 year olds. They get so excited when they hit the ball that they start jumping up and down, cheering...instead of running to the bases. I guess there's a little girl on Noah's team that runs up and takes the ball from whoever has it...she doesn't quite get the point of the game, but they're working on it! LOL!

5.) We'll be picking the kids' daily chores back up, starting next week. We fell off the wagon during the school year, mainly because it's just so busy around here that it's hard to fit them in around their schedules. But they'll be glad to get them going again, because $5.00 per week for Kendall and $3.00 per week for Noah is pretty good spending money for things like SillyBandz and candy! And this year, Kendall is learning how to do laundry! WAHOO!

6.) We are taking a long weekend to head up to Niagra Falls at the end of June. We'll be spending a day/night in Niagra, then heading up to Toronto to visit my friend Doug, then back down through NY and hoping to meet up with Barry's college roommate Marcus and his family on the way back. I'm hoping we have time to stop at Mohican State park for canoeing on our last day, but we'll see how that goes. And get this...we're not planning anything ahead of time. We're going to Hotwire it a couple of days before and see how lucky we get!

7.) In July, Noah will be attending KinderZoo at our awesome zoo every Friday. It's his first time for zoo camp, and he is VERY excited. Kendall has gone every year since she was 4, and it is by far her favorite activity of the summer. Her zoo camp is the last week of July and is going to be extra exciting this year, as her BFF Riley is coming to stay with us for that week and attending zoo camp with Kendall. Those girls have talked of nothing else since March. Oh, the plans they've been making!! It will be an awesome time for them, I'm sure!

8.) We are discussing letting Kendall attend a week-long lacrosse camp in July as well. She's never played, but is willing to give it a try. The way I see it, it's our job to expose her to as many things as we can so she find the things she really I'm pushing for this one. Now, I just have to find a lacrosse stick and mouthpiece. I'm going to try to borrow a stick or find one used, since we're not sure she's going to like it. Craig's list, here I come! :)

9.) We want to get the kids downtown to the new Huntington Field to watch a Clippers game or two...they think that will be major cool! And so do we! There's nothing like a good ball game in the summer. And Noah will be totally into it, seeing how much he loves t-ball. I'm sure it will be a good time!

10.) August brings our big trip of the summer, as we're headed down to Arkansas to visit Barry's sister and her husband. Neither of us have been to that area of the country before, so it feels like an adventure! We're going to take a day or two to get there, stopping to see and do things along the way, spend a few days with Amy & Joe, and then take a different way home, stopping to enjoy all the different parks and such on that route. I love a good road trip!

Of course, we're planning all kinds of little activities here and there...going to the pool, boating, the fountain park in Dublin, the zoo, maybe Kings Island, taking a tour of the Anthony Thomas chocolate factory, Young's Dairy, hiking in Hocking Hills, and many other things our area offers throughout the summer. I love the summer, and it kills me that it's only 10 weeks long!!! So much to cram on earth will we do it all? Oh, and did I mention building a pole barn as well? Ahhhhh, that's a different post entirely... :)

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