Saturday, December 9, 2017

Long Break - Gingerbread House

Wow - it's been a very, very long time since I've posted. Things got real busy there to say the least and the blog is the first to take a back seat when that happens unfortunately. But here we are again. Starting to hit the Christmas-y season with Christmas programs, shopping and all the holidays parades, festivities and Santa visiting.

Grandma picked up a Gingerbread House. We do one every year. This one had a great frosting to use, as that's usually my biggest and only complaint about them. Great bag, frosting all contained, with tips. So none of that frosting bag with the open end. Which for adults is fine, but kids....OIY !!!  More of a mess than anything. So I for one, appreciate the change to a better kid friendly frosting bag. 

Gingerbread House (1)

These things all come in kits now. So it's nice that everything you will need is in there and ready to go. It's all just as fun and turns out just as good.

Gingerbread House (2)

These snowflakes were a pretty addition to the candy that was in there.

Gingerbread House (3)

Gingerbread House (4)

Remember the good ol days when we made them from scratch? I remember making them in school. With graham crackers, you made your own frosting, bought all the toppings of your choice. And made that sucker stand up with no 'kit' help.

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I think it would be fun (and messy) to do that again. If not this year, it will go on next years list of fun things to do. 

Here is her finished product. Notice the lack of frosting and decorations on it. It's a little on the plain side. Can you guess why?

Gingerbread House (6)

Yes, it's because she ate the frosting right from the bag and the rest of the candy separate. Gingerbread house making is one of the few times she's allowed to eat frosting like that. So the house takes a hit, but that's ok since we seldom eat the stuff off of it after it has set out for awhile. 

But they are fun to do and we look forward to them every year. 

Do you make Gingerbread houses every year? 

Make your own from scratch or kit?


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Potato's, Pumpkins & Babies

Sharing a few picture's from the last few weeks. 

Carving pumpkins.
Carve Pumpkins 2017 (1)

Carve Pumpkins 2017 (2)

Carve Pumpkins 2017 (3)

Carve Pumpkins 2017 (4)

Digging potato's with Grandpa.
Dis Potatos (1)

Dis Potatos (2)

Dis Potatos (3)

This one looks like a back messager.
Dis Potatos (4)

Dis Potatos (5)

Dis Potatos (6)

Granddaughter snuggles.
Grandbaby (1)

Grandbaby (2)

Grandbaby (3)

Hope you are all enjoying your week.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Health & Fitness Tips That Will Change Your Life - Review

Why wait until New Years to make that resolution to a healthier you, that may not last but a few weeks anyway. Give it a go now, starting with this book. It will give you easy doable steps to get you going and stay there.

James Atkinson Health & Fitness Tips

This is a book with the beginner in mind to help you get started to a healthy lifestyle. Not a quick 30 day diet & weight loss plan. A 25 step process, to be done over the course of a year, placed in a specific order, that way each one becomes a habit and is intended to stick permanently.  It has great, simple & helpful tips. The diet, exercise & mindset tips are very practical, easy and doable for the everyday person. 

The author himself started out as an unfit overweight beginner, I feel this is why this book is filled with info to help out the beginner looking to get started. All the conflicting information out there these days is so overwhelming.  This is an easy read and easy format to follow. Not the kind of info that makes you think "I can't do this", but the kind of tips and info that makes you think "I CAN do this". If you are struggling or wanting to get started, if you want to lose weight, if you want to be more active... this book is for you.

A great read with personal stories. The author has figured healthy living out through trial and error. A plan to follow over time. A road to success if followed and implemented. These 25 steps are intended to become a habit long term.  I can't say enough how doable the outline is to follow. Do yourself a big favor for your health and get started today.

Check out his website, Jim's Health & Fitness, and definitely his other books.

Available November 1, 2017 for Kindle, Paperback and Audible.

Start getting in shape before those holidays hit. No need to wait until next year, next week or tomorrow. Get started today. You deserve it. You are worth it. 

Have you read any of James Atkinson's books?  I am thinking I'm going to read the Marathon Training & Distance Running book next. 


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Mini-Triathlon & 5K

I participated in the 5K part of this event this past weekend. But I think I really need to do the mini-triathlon next year (run, bike, kayak). Looks real fun. 

We had excellent weather for it. Pretty scenery. Good post party food. Makes for a great day.

mini tri
Photo Credit: Canal Ambush Photo Volunteers

This is true just as much as it is funny.

running cartoon

Exercie to Relax  

Hope you all had a great weekend. 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017


Jamie chose Buffalo Wild Wings for his birthday dinner place. Not sure if we've ever had a family selfie before. So we tried. Might make us look cool.

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Spencer sunning with Big Bear.

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It was VERY hot but we went camping since it may be our last for the season.

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She kept a tally of how many fish we all caught. Dad - 0, Mom - 1, Ashlyn - 25.

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camp (5)

Met the sweetest little camper while there. We love meeting new camper family's. The other little girl was looking back at Ashlyn with her face and eyes the exact same as Ashlyn's. Was really cute. Ashlyn brought her old chairs up to the fort for the kids.

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Little house keeping outside the fort area.

camp (7)

So very pretty here.

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Lake water + sand = hours of messy fun.

camp (9)

Took a break and cooled off inside with some mac & cheese and watch a little of Trolls.

camp (10)

Evening s'mores !

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Always ending with a beautiful sunset.

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What are you doing to enjoy the end of summer weekends?

Do you camp? Fish?

What did you do this weekend?

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Splash Pad Fun

First time we  have been to a Splash Pad before. We will definitely be back again and again !

splash pad 01

They had another little section for the younger kiddos but I didn't get a picture of that. Everything twist, turns and shoots water.

splash pad 02

This was the best and she stood under it about a gazillion times.

splash pad 03

We also tossed water toys up on the green platform, then when the bucket fills and tips, it shoves down and you do it all over again.

splash pad 04

You get some serious amount of water dumped on you.

splash pad 05

splash pad 06

splash pad 07

Definitely a fun time !

Do you have a splash pad near you?

Ever been to one?


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Fitness & Exercise Motivation Book - Review

Have you ever reached for a fitness book, took the time to read it, and although it was filled with decent information.... it was still just 'eat right and exercise'. We all know that's what we need to do, we really do. But a 'do this do that' style usually isn't the way to get us revved up and off the couch.

I read a book recently that I fully expected to be yet another one of these fitness books, but this one was different. A different approach than I've read before. I was hooked right from the beginning. Such a well written book to truly motivate you. Not to tell you why you should get on the road to a better fit you, but to help you find your true why and reason that will motivate and drive you, so that you truly want to set out on a healthier journey. He's someone who has been in your shoes already, who had to work hard to get where he is today, went through the up's and down's to get there, he shares his own fitness journey through his own personal stories that helped him get there.

His name is James Atkinson, author of Fitness & Exercise Motivation, his 6th book. This book is mostly for a beginner but I think it's also a good read for even people just past that beginner stage. It's a great boost of encouragement to stay on the right path if you're starting to lose your mojo.To help you get in the right mind-set right from the get-go.

Jim's Health & Muscle

This is not a diet book or any quick fix to lose 10 pounds for next month's wedding. It's more so about reaching your fitness goals, or getting in the right mind-set and what it takes to get there. Making constant small changes, investing in yourself, starting with small baby steps and going for the long haul. Not taking the easy route or the shortcut. By making small changes at a time for your own good, it will make this healthy new lifestyle of yours so much easier to maintain. Which in turn, will eventually become so routine, it's second nature. 

I really did like the whole book but Chapter 10 sticks out to me as maybe my favorite. It's about the negative people around you. Such a great analogy with his personal life to bring this point across. He also used 2 or 3 stories to drive the point home. About how badly other people's negative comments can effect us. It's amazing how many negative-Nancy's there are out there waiting to point the finger at someone else, and how much it holds someone back. If someone else makes you 'think' you can't achieve your goals, you probably won't. Negative talk has such a strong quick way of bringing us down. Chapter 10 is a powerful chapter, and so well written. 

reading book
Ashlyn snuck a blurry picture of me reading the book on my Kindle. 

He talks in here about "reading too much and training too little". This is SO ME. I have read and read for years, but nothing happened or changed for the better until I got my butt out there and just started. I swear I was a permanent beginner during those years. It's not so much that reading too much is bad, it's just that you have to give each routine a chance before jumping to the next fad or theory. 

Towards the end of the book, he helps you create a chart to help you get started and implement a mix of cardio and resistance program that suits you best. There is a lot of information and great tips offered. 

A co-worker once told me something, and it holds true for so many aspects of one's life. "If you keep doing what your doing, you'll keep getting what you're getting". I still refer to this 20 years later.

I really encourage you to pick up this book if you need that push or encouragement to get started. Even if you've already started or are on a good healthy road, it's still a great book for anyone losing their groove and gaining a successful mind-set.

More information about Mr. Atkinson's and his additional books at his website, Jim's Health and Muscle.

This link goes directly to the paper book & Kindle version, which was $ .99 as of this post.

Amazon Page to James Atkinson's additional books. I for one am looking forward to reading his other books very soon.

I don't have any great big fitness story. Just that it's not easy. So many people "assume" fitness is easy for "thin people" but it isn't. Years ago had you told me I'd cross any finish line, I'd have laughed and said you were crazy! We can all do hard things. If you quit or give up, start again. And again. (I have). Keep going. Take baby steps, but keep going. YOU are worth it.


It's never too early, or too late to work towards being the healthiest you. You have to get to the point where you love your body and yourself enough to take care of it. 

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Morning, Afternoon or Evening Exerciser ?

Got my Run/Walk in for today? Check.
Weights done? Check.

Weights Run (1)

Stability ball? Check.
Medicine ball? Check.
Kettlebells? Kind of, still learning what to do with them.
Weights Run (2)

We were discussing today if we are a morning, afternoon or evening workout person. I don't worry about what statistics say, I do what works for me. If I wait until evening, there's a huge chance it won't happen. Afternoon are just toooo busy, right in the prime of working and getting things done and sometimes too hot if it's summer. 

Mornings I love. It gets done. Either before my daughter gets up if I use my own equipment in the garage, or right after I drop her off if I'm going to the fitness center. That way it's done for the day, I can sweat and shower and be done with it. And just hit the pillow at night when I'm ready to drop and don't feel like it. And it's starts my day out right. And I'm a lot nicer to people. 

I'm in the middle of a great Fitness Motivation book. So far it's really really good and I can't wait to share it with you. Hoping to finish and write a post up soon. 

Hope you are having a great day.

Are you a morning, afternoon or evening workout person?

Can you be nice to people without it?

Favorite workout equipment?

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Adventureland Fun

This past weekend we went to Adventureland. We've been meaning to for the last few years and it just finally worked out.
Adventureland 005

Best part about a Ferris Wheel is how much of the park you can see.
Adventureland 004

The ski lift was so cool. It brought you from one end of the park to the other. Which was nice to get to the other side and give your feet a break. It brought you right through and over top of the rides.
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We rode it many times and this was the only shot of the roller coaster going through at the same time. I only had my small pocket camera and those roller coasters are FAST. Hard to snap a picture of when you want it and time it perfectly when we are going through the loop.
Adventureland 013

So, I have a problem with rides that go in circles and spin. Up and down, I'm fine. Straight forward, I'm fine. Spin...circles....not so much. One would think the tea cups should not be a problem. You would not believe how fast these suckers spin !!! I looked at that steering wheel in the center and they both knew not to help out the spin. I seriously would hate to puke getting off the tea cups.
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Circles....couldn't ride.
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Fast up and down type circles, there they are in that second bucket on the right waving.
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Two of my favorite things about this place. Most rides are ran by older retired folks, therefore super duper nice, respectful and pleasant. Love older folks !!! And the grounds are kept so clean. Very seldom do you see trash laying around.
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Tilting and spinning...ugh.
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Now the train I could handle !!!  Nice and easy. And straight forward.
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This one sucked and no way would I have survived it.
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She got to play 1 game. We prefer to buy from the gift shop instead of dumping money in these games. Because at least she's guaranteed a prize that way.
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I was disappointed that the line for this water ride and the white water raft ride had lines about 2 hours long. We probably rode 10 other rides in that amount of time. So we skipped them, but really wanted to ride them.
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This was Ashlyn's very first non-kiddie roller coaster ride. She was in no way prepared for how fast they go !!!!  Other than the scared shitless look on her face a few times, she liked it.
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I barely got a picture of this one it went so fast and after that quick picture I couldn't even watch. Got that queezy feeling just watching it.
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We really wanted to ride this one too. Well Ashlyn wasn't so sure, we wanted too but no way we were doing the 2 hour wait. And yes, roller coasters I can do (usually).
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We did the bumper cars many times. Fun stuff right there. Look at her face, she's after someone.
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This Space Shot ride...not sure how'd I'd have been on this one. Maybe fine. Probably fine. But it was too neat to not get a video of, so I volunteered...just in case.
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Shoots you up and right back down. Towards the end, notice this other kids shoe falling off. Haha !!! (video 1.09 long)

Captain Hook's huge boot. Obviously, probably didn't need much explaining.
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The landscaping is very pretty throughout the park as well.
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We were so exhausted. Our feet hurt so bad. Sweaty with no water rides. Just plain whooped. Long day but a fun day.
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So the following day, Ashlyn notices the back of my legs and asked what the heck happened. I take one look and I knew!!  I knew damn well what ride did this.  TEA CUPS !!!  It's vicious people, be careful.
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Hope you all had a great day too !!

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