2017 Woodstown, NJ Firecracker 5k

On Father’s Day I was blessed with a gift from my older son, Lucas. Not sure why… but he agreed to do a 4th of July race with me. For anyone who knows me (and my son), you know what a big deal this is because he doesn’t always love the idea of running.

Which, you know, I get, because I didn’t always love the idea of running either.

Way back when: cheering with his little brother at the 4 miler.

At first I tried to sell him on the local 4 miler, the Pitman 4 Miler. When asked if there were hills though, I could not tell a lie. There are hills and lots of them. I’ve run it twice and it’s a thoroughly challenging course!

He quickly put the kibosh on that.

After looking around a bit, I found the Woodstown Firecracker 5k. Small, 20 minutes from home, less than $30 for both of us to run, and from what I could tell, fairly flat. SOLD! We registered immediately.

He planned to train but didn’t train (at all), and when we woke up on race morning, he confessed that his sneakers were shot and he needed new ones (not exactly the ideal time to tell me).

On a wing and a prayer.

The race started at 8am at Marlton Recreation Park, with packet pickup beginning at 6:30am. We arrived at a little after 7 and were immediately able to get our bibs and shirts. After asking where the starting line was (we saw the finish, but not a start), we headed in the direction we were pointed. We saw an arrow sign and figured we’d just line up when we saw other people doing the same. There were a few portapotties but we didn’t need to use them.

Since we arrived early, we wandered around the park and found a few animals. Lucas likes chickens and roosters so he was content just watching them. In fact, I think if I told him we were going to skip the race and just hang out there, he would have been absolutely fine with that.

No such luck, kiddo!

There were 186 participants and the start was actually on the grass (which is why we didn’t see a start line). From the grass line, we were to run toward a path that we’d all eventually go on.

It was a little awkward because we were lined up length wise rather than what I’ve come to expect but it worked out well because people naturally fell into place rather than trying to self-seed. After hearing a few words from the race director, we were off!

The course was about a mile loop around the park, then a mile through a neighborhood, with the third mile being the same as the first but in reverse.

Lucas was unsure with how well he’d be able to do, so I suggested that we run intervals. We ran the first half mile before switching into 30 second intervals of running and walking.

Hanging in the ‘hood, just after the water station.

The first mile and a half were great for Lucas, he was feeling good and was fairly content. Just after the water stop, which was around 1.5 miles, he started getting down on himself.

You guys, I hate to admit this but in the past I’ve not been very supportive when he’s gotten emotional during a race. Which is not okay!

I know that self doubt can be a hell of a thing to deal with and while yes, he should and could have trained more, he didn’t need to hear that from me once we were in the thick of the race.

Before going to the race, I decided that there were only going to be positive affirmations and motivation coming from me toward him while we were running. If he was feeling discouraged, I’d remind him how great he was and what an awesome kid I think he is. Because that’s what he needed in that moment from me and I want him to feel good about himself when he’s running and accomplished when he’s done!

Last mile, running by our chicken friends, who were obviously cheering him on too!

He was not as happy as he appears in this picture, but then again, we runners have that “fake it ’til you make it” smile down pat, amirite?

I tried the best that I could to read him and what he needed to hear from me while we were in the home stretch. I didn’t want to be too strong or inauthentic with my motivating. I asked him his motto for the rest of the race and he started chanting “almost done” about a quarter mile from the finish line. So I joined him and we both chanted “almost done” until we crossed the finish at 41 minutes.

There were no timing mats, instead they kept track by collecting the bottom tab on our bibs. After handing over our information, we were given a bottle of water and continued to walk in order to cool down and get in the shade.

Stayed cool on a hot and humid morning wearing my super cute Minnie Bow tank! You can save 10% at Donna’s etsy shop with the code MRCScootaDoot.

The Woodstown parade was starting after the race was over but we decided to hit the road so I could make us a yummy breakfast. It was the perfect way to start our celebration of America’s birthday. He even told me that he was glad that he did it and he was looking forward to running another race with me.

“Next time, I’ll train…”

Mmmhmm.

What did you do on the 4th of July? How do you motivation someone during a race?

This One Time, At Space Camp…

I spent the Forth of July weekend at the best camp ever. There was no lake, or horses, or archery, or whatever they do at summer camp. The camp I went to had a Space Shuttle and Astronauts, and I even got to do science on the moon.  I finally got to fulfill my childhood dream of going to Space Camp, and it was WAY better than horseback riding.

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I wore Skirt Sports gear the whole weekend and it didn’t let me down in the Alabama heat! #psychedGGUforthewin

I had to fly to Huntsville, Alabama, the day before camp started, so of course I researched restaurants. It had been a long time since I’d had a po-boy and ettoufe, and I was on a mission. I wasn’t disappointed by the Yelp reviews for the Po-Boy Factory. So yumm!

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The next day, I got to Camp a little early and did some exploring and shopping. The Shuttle in the photo is the Pathfinder, and was an actual Shuttle program test vehicle.

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We got to do a Shuttle mission where we replicated Mission Control and Flight Crew duties. I got the be the “Guidance Systems & Navigational Controls Engineer” for the mission! We spent lots of time pretending we were astronauts, and we got to work in simulators that replicated the Shuttle, the ISS (International Space Station), and a lunar base.

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The second day of camp was jam-packed with activities. We toured the Rocket Center with our private tour guide; a retired NASA engineer who’d been with the rocket program since its inception.  He knew EVERYTHING.

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Saturn V Rocket. You can see tiny humans in the bottom left corner of the photo!

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The *actual* Apollo 16 Capsule. Imagine 3 men in that 6x6x6 foot space for DAYS!

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There were burn marks on the bottom from re-entry to the atmosphere from space. SO COOL.

Then we got to do the REALLY fun stuff, actual astronaut training! The first video shows me in the 1/6 Gravity Chair. It simulates the gravity felt on the moon. It was much harder to get going than you might think!

In this video, I’m in the MAT, Multi-Axis Trainer. This machine simulates a “tumble spin” that pilots can experience with loss of control of their vehicle. I was certain I would throw up. Megan, our team trainer, said she’s put over 700 people on this machine and no one has ever gotten sick. I’m happy to report that I didn’t feel nauseated at all! The chair keeps your tummy at the center of gravity, thereby avoiding nausea. It’s really true!

We built a model rocket and launched it (mine deployed perfectly, thank you very much). We also did a thermal shielding experiment that required me to put my faux engineering skills to the test. We learned TONS about NASA history and the legacy of our space program, I got to meet a real life space-walking astronaut, see an IMAX movie about the construction of the ISS, and learn about the next evolution of exploration with the Orion craft.

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Our team right before graduation

Astrobot helps astronauts on the ISS with tasks and space walks (EVAs)

Astrobot helps astronauts on the ISS with tasks and space walks (EVAs)

The other wonderful thing about my experience is that it brought a variety of people together who likely would not have interacted in their day-to-day lives. We came from all over North America, and we all shared a love of space and science that unified us. Ages ranged from early twenties to retirement, from married couples, to singles, to a mom and her daughter. All backgrounds were represented, too, from chemical engineers to artists. Our team had so much fun together and laughed constantly, so much so that we were made fun of for it at our graduation. I was so touched when a retired teacher from Maryland and a musician from Brooklyn busted out their instruments and improvised together. Camp was such a unifying experience, and I know each of us learned something about diversity during the course of the weekend.

In addition to the kids and adult camps, they have Family Camps, Educator camps for STEM teachers, and an Aviation Challenge for those who are more interested in learning how to fly an F-16 than a Shuttle Orbiter. My only advice if you’re going and you’re an adult, sleep at the Marriott next door. The beds and showers at the Camp facility were kid sized and not very comfy for us larger humans.

Not so comfy when you're 40.

Not so comfy when you’re 40.

I would go back to Space Camp in a less than twelve parsecs, and I REALLY want to stress that this is such a fantastic opportunity for kids. If your child is interested in STEM studies, SEND THEM TO SPACE CAMP. I am not exaggerating when I say that it could be life-defining experience for them, the moment where they decide what they want to be when they grow up. It was that impactful and influential. The environment is so supportive of encouraging each child’s ability and potential. When you’re there, you feel as though you really could be the first person on Mars, or the engineer to solve the complex problem of artificial gravity. This is such a better educational value for your dollar than the typical summer camp, which is great, but will they get to meet an astronaut and ask them questions?

Nope.

Or pilot the Shuttle?

Uh-uh.

Or make slime on the moon?

Ain’t gonna happen.

 

The only place you can do that is at Space Camp.

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I’m front row, second from the right.

Have you been to Space Camp? Is science your boyfriend/girlfriend? Are you sad that the Hubble will crash into the Pacific in 3 years? (FTR, I’m crying in my Cornflakes about it.)

Tell me all about it below!

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Oh, Summer. I Miss You Already.

Summer lovin’, had me a blast…
Summer lovin’, happened so fast…

I introduced my daughters to Grease this summer, and this song has been on repeat the last few weeks. That line is appropriate for how I’m feeling now, because we’re in our last week of summer vacation. SAD FACE. Last Friday, I took my kids shopping for school supplies (which is one of my favorite activities. Paper, pencils, markers- oh my!). Today begins a flurry of back-to-school prep, including a PTA meeting and kindergarten orientation.

I’m excited to get back to our routine- which will mean regular gym time for me and consistent naps for the baby- but I’m sad to lose all this fun time with my kids. We’ve been swimming, visited museums, had movie nights every week, read lots of books, eaten all the cupcakes, baked pies and just enjoyed hanging out with each other. (Oh, and I reached our summer goals- Teaching my oldest to tie her shoes- check. Getting my middle one to start reading- check. Full night of sleep for the dude- CHECK AND HALLELUJAH. For me, learn to play chess- check, and the new goal is to kick J’s butt in a game. Or all the games. Checkmate, baby!) I had date nights, girls nights, moms nights, and while I rarely slept in, I basked in the contentment that comes with balancing adult time and kid time.

Here are some favorites from my summer vacation:

These were almost too cute to eat! The kids and I loved the tour at Chocolate Kingdom.

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One of our field trips was to The Container Store, because I was desperate for something to organize all of my makeup. I’m happy to report that two months later, things still look this neat.

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This book! I’m still thinking about it. I read a lot this summer, but this, Last Letter to my Lover by Jojo Moyes, and Astonish Me by Maggie Shipstead were my faves.

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One of my only naps with this guy (He is obsessed with those cute Honest brand diapers- he calls this one is “zoom zoom,” and the skull and crossbones pattern is “yo ho”). Now he naps in his crib! Glad I got a picture of this. Sniff.

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Ice Cream smoke! If you’re a run Disney person, and you bring your kids with you, try to check out Abracadabra Ice Cream. You choose your mix-ins and they use liquid nitrogen for a little ice cream magic. My kids loved it.

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My best friend is a teacher, and her daughter is six months older than my son. We saw them at least twice a week, usually more, for the first half of summer (before they traveled north to visit family. LEFT US, I MEAN.). She and little dude love each other the most, and I get bff time. How cool is that? Here’s our little crew at Chipotle.

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We spent so much time at the pool. We also spent a week at the beach with my wonderful inlaws. Flying kites, night swimming, boogie boarding in the ocean, collecting shells…that’s the life, man.

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The girls love baking with me. I let them bake m&m blondies for July 4th, and my oldest also helped make the crust for my berry galettes. At the beach, she helped with a strawberry-rhubarb pie (store bought crust here) and I taught her how to make a fluted crust. She’s my picky eater though, so she still won’t try most of what she makes. Silly girl!

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We also celebrated my middle one’s 5th birthday. We had a big party with friends back in May, and a small celebration with family while at the beach. She chose a menu of crescent roll hot dogs and s’mores. I made my husband’s s’more with a Reese’s Cup instead of Hershey’s and I don’t think he’ll ever have a plain one again. (Speaking of, have you tried the peanut butter cup Oreos? OMG.)

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I hope you’ve enjoyed your summer as much as I’ve loved mine! Tell me what you’ve been up to. Any book recs? What would you mix in your ice cream? The kids mixed cotton candy, white chocolate and marshmallow. I think they get their sweet tooth from me.

Summertime Fun – a little bit of this, a little bit of that

Can you believe that we are already halfway through 2014? I can’t!

I’m so grateful for summer – I’m much more a warm weather than cold, snowy weather kind of girl. Although I do have to say that I was grateful for the cool rainy weather we had this past Friday on July 4th here in New Jersey.

Earlier last week I’d signed Dude and myself up for a local hilly 4 miler, at the cajoling of our gym buddies.

Two years ago I’d run with my friend, Sarah, and it was hotter than the surface of the sun. I even have proof of me saying that I would never run it again on Facebook.

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Those smiles are totally fake and we are holding each other up so we don’t crumple to the ground. Note the caption.

I held true to that last year; I cheered with my family at the three mile mark (which happens to be less than a quarter mile from our house). What I particularly love about this race is that there is great crowd support the entire time, people are out with signs and hoses and cowbells.

But this year I thought it would be an awesome idea to run with Dude. Peer pressure.

This was, of course, before I was sick. Wednesday my throat felt like a porcupine had taken up residence. Thursday I slept the day away (my parents had the kids – YAY FAMILY!). The urge to DNS (did not start) was great. But I couldn’t leave Dude in a lurch, especially after I talked him into it by saying that we’d run together.

Plus, that number.

Plus, that number.

So we ran. It rained. I considered bailing at mile 3. Dude said he’d run my bib in. I got mad and said, “F THAT”. I finished the race. And then, since I was already making dumb decisions, instead of going home and climbing into bed… I had a mimosa.

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Why yes, that is a strawberry. We are very fancy.

Anyway, I am finally feeling somewhat better. Which is good because these kids are back in the hizzy and are ready to be entertained.

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Let me entertain you! Let me make you smile!

Since I’m the cruise director of the S.S. Mommy Magic I’ve been trying to think of fun new exciting things to do. The pool club and library have been wonderful but I need to intersperse some other things into the rotation. However, a lot of the things they have in mind are not exactly on the cheap. Seeing as how we are trying to save money, I was racking my brain for a solution.

And then it hit me…

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Hello sweetie!

Yeah, those are gift cards. Lots and lots of them. We have an envelope full of gift cards we’ve gotten as gifts and well, not used. Or used partially. So we are going to couple those with these…

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Coupons

Let’s see where we land by September, shall we?

Any suggestions or tips for fun summer activities with the kiddos or making a dollar stretch? Ever run a race (or do anything while sick) and wonder what exactly you were thinking the next day?

 

A Day in the Life: Mer

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Wake up to the sound of birds chirping. Open one eye to peek at the clock and see if it’s worth going back to sleep or if I should just lie in bed. Alarm set for 5:10am. It’s 4:56am.

Damnitsomuch.

Lay around for a couple of minutes. Contemplate the use of lie versus lay and realize that it’s probably going to be wrong in this post so I might as well just get up.

Skulk around the house in hopes of not waking my family as I prepare for the gym. Skulking/preparing takes approximately 10 minutes. The pooch shifts in her bed as I’m sitting on the kitchen floor, putting on my shoes, and I freeze. She settles down. I grab my gym essentials (towel, water, wallet, phone, keys) and creep out the door.

It’s always interesting to see what song is on the radio; perhaps it will be an indication of the tone of the day? Maybe it will be Born to Run? Perhaps a little Radiohead?

No.

Well... okay then.

Well… okay then.

Head into the gym, chat with my trainer’s wife for a couple of minutes before she heads out on her rainy run. I decide to stick to the treadmill as I like to stay close by in case my trainer swings in early (not usually the case but it’s happened on occasion). Sometimes I run sprints on the nearby side street but since it’s gross, I stay inside.

But look, I took a picture of the one of the weight while the gym was absolutely empty. Because I promise you that if I took my phone into the gym or even took a picture in the gym when my trainer or anyone else was around, I would have to answer at least twenty questions.

And possibly get ridiculed for taking pictures of inanimate objects.

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The “light” weights.

My Thursday partner shows up a little before 6am and does a quick warmup before we start a set of FitDeck cards and a five minute treadmill run, until our trainer shows. Once he arrives, we move into his plan for us for the hour while talking about the news, society, my dad, my Dude, and a variety of other topics. Well, mostly he talks and I grunt out responses in between deadlifts, cleans, push presses, etc. It works out well.

At 7:10am I arrive home and fall back into the Mom Role and the family routine.

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There was a hot second of consideration toward straightening my hair. Maybe it was a half second.

Breakfast is the next order of business because I’m more than hungry at this point. Pooks heads out the door for the school bus after our usual “See you later, alligator/After a while, crocodile” routine.

Dude and I chat for a few minutes while I eat my eggs and toast before I realize that I need to deal with my arch nemesis… Laundry.

Said in the way that Seinfeld says NEWMAN.

Said in the way that Seinfeld says NEWMAN.

Throw that load in and immediately get sidetracked when I also realize that I need to start our dinner in the crock pot. Ten minutes later, I’m fighting with the can opener and glance over to see Gemma trying to eat the rest of my eggs.

Yeah, welcome to mornings in my house. Set Gemma up with the eggs (in her bowl rather than on my plate) and turn back to the task at hand of opening cans. Which shouldn’t be incredibly difficult, except when your can opener is a piece of poop.

Which mine is.

Little and I decide that we need to remedy this and head to CVS for a new can opener.

"Can I carry the new can opener?" Sure buddy.

“Can I carry the new can opener?” Sure buddy.

After Little and the cashier mutually express their admiration for each other, we head back home.

You had ONE job...

You had ONE job…

I defy you, can opener! And I’m able to finish my task of getting dinner into the crock pot.

All is right with the world once more.

All is right with the world once more.

9:30am – Little requests his favorite snack and drink and I head to the computer to do some work for Scoot a Doot. Instagram a couple of throwback pictures. Chat with Vic via email. Chat with Jess via text. Hear from my book club buddies about new books. Email with Jess and Cam about Disneyland half and talk about what we’re going to wear (priorities).

Prep lunch for Little and prep Gemma for a visit to the park once Little heads off to school. Our district’s Pre-K is a half day program so he’s picked up by the bus at 10:45am. Next year he’ll be in full day Kindergarten.

Soon enough, the bus takes Little off to school. Gemma and I hop in the car to go to the park.

"Momma! I want to play with everyone!"

“Momma! I want to play with everyone!”

The rescue we got her from (Bella Reed Pit Bull Rescue) is filming a video for pit bull advocacy/awareness. I wish I could say that she was the best behaved dog there but… well… she was a little wound and really excited to see everyone. Regardless, she had a blast and I was happy to help.

Oh, now you show up!

Oh, now you show up!

The ride home is filled with me singing and Gemma sighing at my singing. What, only you’re allowed to act a fool, Gemma? I don’t think so.

Geez Momma, you're SO embarrassing.

Geez Momma, you’re SO embarrassing.

Dude and I meet at h0me for lunch, as we do most days. It’s nice because we’re able to have conversations that aren’t interrupted by our kids. Heck, we even get to talk about our kids without their big ol’ ears around. And sometimes, we have conversations that don’t have to do with the kids at all!

After lunch there’s an hour of free time for errands. Today’s include a visit to the farm and getting my eyebrows waxed. I’ll spare you a picture of the brow waxing because no one needs to see that.

This is New Jersey.

This is New Jersey.

berries612Little rolls in at 2:20 and he’s excited to show me his memory book. Pooks rolls in at 3 and the first thing he does is check out the memory book, too.

"We both wanted to be astronauts in Pre-K!"

“We both wanted to be astronauts in Pre-K!”

Moments like these are when my heart swells in my chest, and I hide the fact that I want to smush their little faces together in a group hug. I hang back, I listen, and I’m so grateful that they are such good brothers to one another.

With the end of school coming up (next week), I get to work on the thank yous for our teachers and bus drivers as the boys entertain each other.

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Watch a little SYTYCD and then snuggle up with Pooks so he can read me stories that he’s written during the school year. After he’s finished, he asks if I can find “Happy” sheet music on the computer so he can start practicing it on the piano. I happily oblige. Thank you, Pinterest.

As he disappears, Little shows up, nose scrunched.

“Momma, what are you making that smells so yummy?”
“Oh, that’s Chicken Taco Chili.” (nonchalantly in hopes that maybe he’ll try)
“Ew, I’m not eating that.”

*cue sad trombone*
(I’m not surprised at all… he’s my pickier than picky eater.)

All this technology and yet we have no smell-o-vision.

All this technology and yet we have no smell-o-vision.

As we wait for Dude to get home from work, I fold laundry and Gemma “helps”. Her helping includes stealing socks and standing on the folded clothes while sniffing my hair.

I hear the boys downstairs. Remember that warm fuzzy feeling I described earlier about how loving they are with each other? Well, the tone now is decidedly less loving. The older one being crazy and the little one saying “Ow, ow, ow!” Hmph.

6:15pm – Dinner is served and to Pooks’ credit he tries the chili and even compliments me. Little has pancakes. Everyone is happy.

Gemma has a photo shoot scheduled with the same photographer who took her Adopt Me rescue pictures. But first, to make our lives more interesting, she’s found a bunny nest in our yard.

Yeah. No pictures of that either. Rethinking sharing my eyebrow waxing picture.

Dude and Gem are off to the photographer. Chat on Facebook about youth literature. I gently rouse Little, who’s fallen asleep on the couch, and get him into his pjs.

Instead I'll share my non-rabbit eating children.

My non-rabbit eating children.

Watch a little tv and read Little two books before bed. He’s ready to go to sleep a couple of minutes before 8pm.

Pooks hangs out on the couch with me and we watch Spongebob and talk about everything and nothing. Soon he leaves me for the shower, a book, and bed.

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I write the majority of this post (and figure I should document it for the sake of… I don’t even know).

And that is the majority of my Thursday, June 12th, 2014. I was saying earlier via email that I don’t think I realized how boring I was until this post, but I would like to amend that statement.

I don’t think I realized how lucky I am. I’ve got a good life.

As Ferris Bueller said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

Indeed.

Do Good, Feel Good: Out of this World Lemonade

Ah, almost-summer. Time for sunshine, pools opening, long days (and short nights), and of course, LEMONADE. This past weekend my family hosted our third Out of this World Lemonade Stand to support Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation in raising money for pediatric cancer research.

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Despite hosting the same event yearly, each time is unique and incredibly rewarding. This was Little’s first official time “hosting” with his big brother and he took his job as ice scooper very seriously. His little voice rang out “CUSTOMERS!” every time a car slowed or people walked down the block.

We live on a cut-through street (you know, the one where people drive to avoid hitting lights) which really helps generate stand traffic. And, of course, we post signs at both ends of the block.

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We encourage the kids to run the stand as much as possible, with minimal help from us. I do have to say that social media helps a lot with reaching out to friends and family and sharing our donation page; that’s something that neither of them have at this point and won’t for some time! However, they are the ones who are squeezing the lemons, old school style.

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At the end of two days, between online and in person donations, we’ve raised $1,174.53. We set a slightly lofty goal of $2,000 and haven’t hit it… yet. But hey, if you’d like to help us out, please feel free to click the link (the in person donations aren’t yet visible).

While our lemonade stand weekend has passed, the official Alex’s Lemonade Stand “lemonade days” are actually this upcoming weekend! If you search here, you can find upcoming fundraisers in your area. Want to get involved and host a lemonade stand of your own? It’s not too late! Check out the Get Involved page.

Additionally, coming up in September is Alex’s Million Mile RUN.WALK.RIDE! We had an awesome team of 31 people last year and I’m betting that we can TOP THAT in 2014.

Let’s mix, pour, and find a cure one cup at a time!

A Day In The Life: Brooke

Ever wonder what a stay-at-home mom does all day? How about a professional volunteer? Or a journalist? I know I often want to text Jess about what she’s doing at work (because make-up) and what she’s wearing or buying or coveting at Nordy’s (because fashion). And what is Bec making for dinner? What bags is she eyeing at Kate Spade? What fitness class is Cam trying today? Did her students get her anything good for the last day of school? What are we reading? These are the questions of our lives, and lucky for you (or lucky for me, anyway), we have decided to give you some answers. For the next six Fridays, the Scoot Chicks will be giving you a glimpse into our day, and today, we start with me!

I start my day with coffee- always two cups, black. Lately, I’m obsessed with Dark Chocolate Truffle from Target.

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I make my kids breakfast and get them ready for school, and in between, I make my breakfast and I make lunches for the girls. At the beginning of the school year, I was good and packed everything at night. But now it’s May, and some days, that means they get uncrustables and applesauce (Today, I actually made the sandwiches. This was pre-cutting them into flower shapes).

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Once the kids are ready, I have about ten minutes to get myself ready to go. This is when Little Dude’s Elmo obsession comes in handy. (Thank you, You Tube!) After school drop off, Little Dude and I usually have a playdate. Today, we went to open play at a local gym.

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Once home, we have lunch and I try to squeeze in a little bit of cleaning while he naps. (Some days, he naps on me, and that’s my time to read or text friends. Usually Mer. I’ll be sad when he stops napping on me because I’ll have no excuse for the laundry pile.) While putting him down, I received an email about Frozen on Ice tickets on presale, so I rushed to buy those (as did everyone else on my fb feed).

The first carline is my time to catch up on emails, check out Facebook and Instagram and listen to more Elmo.

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Between pickups, I usually take the youngers on a fun “field trip” (typically, the playground or Target). Today, we went to the library.

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Second carline means a nap for my middle girl- Bon Iver is her nap time whisperer. She usually falls asleep about 45 seconds into the first song.

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Then, I get to read a little bit more. Today, I’m catching up on a newspaper article about John Green. (My husband gets the WSJ, and he leaves articles of interest for me in our bathroom magazine rack. It’s the sweet little things that make a marriage, isn’t it?)

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Dance classes are finished and there’s no homework for the last two weeks of school, so once I picked up my oldest girl, we met some friends at the blueberry u-pick.

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Dinner for the kids was McDonald’s, along with a discussion about why mommy doesn’t eat it, why it’s a “treat” food and some examples of healthy and unhealthy food. (They asked, haha.) This all occurred on our drive to swim lessons. A lot of our teaching moments happen in the car! An older mom-friend of mine told me that she was sad once her daughter started driving because they lost that car time together.

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Once home, we worked on my oldest’s Ladybug Girl costume for book character day (so glad I hoard arts and crafts supplies because we’ve had a lot of “Fun Family Projects” in Kindergarten. I’m still waiting for my report card, to be honest. Or at least a “Super!” sticker.). My husband and I ate a quick dinner and got the kids into bed.

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The day I photographed was my blogging day for Scoot, so once Little Dude fell asleep, I worked on my post. Finally, around 9:30pm, J and I settled down on the couch for some wine and House of Cards.

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Some days are less action-packed (I LOVE THOSE DAYS), but most are a flurry of activities and chores and noise. I feel so lucky to stay at home with my kids. This is my life! It’s messy and crazy and ruled by tiny little people, and it’s a ton of time in the car, omg, but I’m doing exactly what I’ve always wanted to do.

For all the moms- stay-at-home, working, work-at-home- here’s a video that I saw at my MOPS meeting on Monday. It captures our days pretty well!

How do you take your coffee? Is there someone you text almost every day? Are we all stocking up on tissues for the TFIOS movie?