week 37 + 38 wrap up

monday | september 10:

it’s gonna be a busy week. this is my to do list…for today. by mid week, i added another entire page.

today’s #fmsphotoaday is black & white. loving my new sweater.day 10 #fmsphotoaday | black & white

i am at my best when…..
#30lists --- day ten: i am at my best when...

tuesday | september 11:

look what i found in my laptop when i got to work?Untitled

i think my computer wrote be a love note to make up for the fact that the power source is going dead and i have to find this plug. it ain’t easy.Untitled

wednesday | september 12:

another happy walk to school.

thursday | september 13:

me and my wallet, waiting for breakfast at a local coffee shop.Untitled

the best part about thursdays.Untitled

two of my favorite players.

friday | september 14:

gibson likes to wear my necklace as a beard.Untitled
errands on a friday night with a gorgeous sunset.

saturday | september 15:

on our way to see my parents at their camping spot. fluffy dog needs his shades.Untitled

time to take the kayaks out for a spin.

mom on hersUntitled

matt taking it out.Untitled

but these are the real chariots.

 we’re ready.

let’s get this party started.

mama and papi

these kids went all out in the water fight.

this is no easy task. my legs got a super workout.Untitled

walkin’ the docks. saying goodbye to summer.

nothing wrong with a little sand on your bum.

but there is something wrong with a splinter in my finger. but my daddy worked his magic and got it out.

the ice cream parlor at the nearby lake has THE. LARGEST. ice cream EVER.

mint and chip for me. all the way.

this is a kid’s scoop my friends. 

made it home in time for church and this was the view of the night sky from gibson’s middle school building. i love our church. and this town.

strawberry shortcake. oh yes!Untitled

 and snuggles. he smells so good.

i’m so lame. there are no pics for monday, tuesday or wednesday.

thursday | september 20:

sometimes i get a breakfast burrito at it’s a grind. love this place. i mean, ray charles is on the wall. eric clapton is on the other one. it’s cool.Untitled

this is gibson’s finger stack.

and it’s date night and we love sienna.

because this is mine, all mine.

spot #2 is the theater to see GLENN!!!!

10 minutes until showtime.
ten minutes until Glenn! #glennbeck #unelectable

it’s been so long since we’ve seen him live. even though this was a telecast, it still felt like we were right there in his audience.
Hard to believe it's been 3 years since we were flown to NY and sat in his Manhattan office for a chat and a good cry. He always knows how to tell a story and last night's show was no exception. #glennbeck2012 #glennbeck  #unelectable

friday | september 21:

redoing the boys’ bathroom and this is the inspiration piece.Untitled

saturday | september 22:

our lunch. artichoke and spinach grilled cheese sandwiches. but i added chicken. here’s the original recipe that i found on pinterest.Untitled

and dessert before church.

marshall loves god. and he loves putting stickers on his forehead.

sunday | september 23:

today’s lunch. pizza rolls and cherry coke. don’t judge, football’s on.Untitled


run a mile in my shoes | ENJOYing it

when i decided to start a small running goal (#runamileinmyshoes), i didn’t anticipate the results. i had never taken on this kind of challenge. okay, so not never. i’ve always said i want to enjoy working out, i just never really did. i’d get on the treadmill after work but i was never satisfied. i was bored and would find other things to do to avoid it the next day.

never did i think that running would
a) be positive,
b) change my body so quickly, or
c) turn out to be something i wanted to do.

within the first week i noticed a significant change in my body. i know you might be thinking ‘but you’re already so tiny’, but i’m really not. i’m 5 foot 3, and have been teetering between 127 and 132 pounds for the past few years. this is not my ideal weight. with a goal of maintaining at 123lbs, you’re probably rolling your eyes again. haha! but 7 pounds on a small frame like mine shows up. i can’t hide it from my mirror or my head and my clothes can only mask so much.

muscles are hurting in places i haven’t thought about in 10 years.
lines in my arms and legs are showing definition.
the overall ‘puffiness’ has been eliminated and i’m noticeably toner and tighter all over.
my second chin is nearly gone.
the baby fat that’s been sitting at the front of my belly for a decade is becoming flatter and flatter.

i’m freaking amazed that this is happening after only having clocked over 12 miles, having only ran for 11 days (not in a row).

i didn’t know i had this in me. no clue i could run up and down hills, setting new goals for myself…just a few more steps before you walk…just 2 more laps than yesterday…learning that i am capable and strong makes me feel like i finally have control over my own body.

my best girl texted this pic to me the other day and it’s exactly what i’m feeling right now….and i want to hang on to this idea.

my progress so far and in the future will continue to be posted on instagram from @retrohipmama and with the hashtag #runamileinmyshoes. honestly, the accountability and expectation not to fail keep me going as well. it helps when i get such good feedback from friends and followers. so thanks to everyone who has been supporting me, love you all!


on the treadmill for day 2 of #runamileinmyshoes


day 4 of #runamileinmyshoes | today was a walk to target withe boys at lunch. shopping counts as walking right?

day 5 of #runamileinmyshoes | a run up to the park. up and down shady trails. felt amazing.

day 6 of #runamileinmyshoes | okay so it's not actually running but bowling was fun!

day 7 of #runamileinmyshoes but I couldn't run...so I jumped on the trampoline and worked up a sweat.

day 8 of #runamileinmyshoes | the boy needed a duffle bag for camping and I needed to run. so...I ran to target...actually.

day 9 of #runamileinmyshoes | another mile. nothing special. shooting for 1.5 tomorrow!

day 10 of #runamileinmyshoes | totally hi-5ing myself for doing an extra lap and more than my mile-and-half goal! ✋

day 11 #runamileinmyshoes | surpassed 2 miles!!!! also since its my first day of my 13 day #staycation, I had no time constraints and ran in the morning before it got hit. felt amazing! now to prepare to get my marsh back in 2.5 hours!

at this point, i think i can even keep up the 2 miles a day but i don’t want to overextend myself or my time. just trying to keep it simple. not planning any marathons or joining a running group. this is certainly ME time. my music. my thoughts. my escape.

ENJOYing it makes me want to keep it up…so i’m off to run!

have a super day ENJOYing something that’s making a positive change in your life.


running a mile in my shoes

i am not a runner.
i do not plan to become a runner.
but i want to run.
i want to run.
running feels good.
running does something wonderful to my body and soul.
so i will run.
i will run one mile a day.
maybe more, but never less.
i will run no matter what.
for at least thirty days.
i will run.
i will run a mile in my shoes.
and i will document it with a picture (of course) and share it on instagram.

where is all this coming from you may be asking yourself.
it’s simple.
two places, two different people and one goal.

first: elise. yes, elise again. i’ve been devouring her blog, what can i say, she’s kind of amazing.
i ran across this photo the other day.


holy cow, did she really run a mile a day and take a picture of her feet every time? cool.

stored it away in the ‘inspired’ category of my brain.

second: aimee. yep, aimee steckowski is an amazingly inspiring person to me, on many levels. full of grace and sweetness, i’m always drawn to her. thankfully we’re friends and i’m not some crazy stalker.

this morning as i was being lazy in bed, flipping through recent instagram posts, i saw this:


a sudden urge came over me. it was instant. i wanted to run. was it the pink shoes? the idea of some freedom and music? i have no clue but i was determined. and that picture of elise’s shoes came right back to the front…

and without me saying anything to anyone, marsh asked me if i wanted to walk up to the park with him. “oh my gosh, yes!”

we made a yummy breakfast. green egg scramble (eggs, deli meat, spinach and garlic + cheddar at the end.) + fruit smoothies and let that settle. once my music was on, phone was secure on my arm, one headphone was in place and endomondo was set on run, marshall and i high-tailed it up the road.

while he played on the play structure, i ran laps around him on the walkway. he even joined me for 10 laps!

i ran an entire mile!

inspired by @elisejoy to run a mile a day. here's to day 1. #runamileinmyshoes

my legs felt like jello by the time we got home and my heart was pounding but i felt amazing.

not exactly sure how or when i’m going to fit a mile into each day but i will find a way.

and in the spirit of marshall’s new found love of star wars…”there is no try, only do.” -yoda

what have you been inspired to do?
what will you commit to that you haven’t wanted to before?
will you join me in running (or walking) a mile a day? if you do, just post your shoes or your view on instagram with the hashtag #runamileinmyshoes. we’ll run together! follow me @retrohipmama

have a wonderful sunday and a great week!


week 22 wrap up

OHMIGOOODNESS i love the warm weather. mainly so the boys can play in the water and i can relax out in the back with them.

so here’s how we spent last week:

monday | may 28:

mostly shirtless boys.


a kid who found this empty corona box and used it all week to carry around his “supplies”.


tuesday | may 29:

STOP! hammock time! (lol, i crack myself up!)
STOP! ...... Hammock Time!

my april prints came! yeah!

April photos are here!!!! Love me some #persnicketyprints !!!!

i’m such a super hero nerd that i grabbed this tumbler at home goods with not one ounce of shame. POW!


marshall wouldn’t go in the pool unless i “dipped my toes in too.” it felt so good!


then he was cool with going it alone. in his undies of course.



wednesday | may 30:

#photoadayMAY for today is your personality. i took this picture the prior week for my style post and added text using the phonto app. it’s kinda perfect.

may 30: my personality

this old martha stewart recipe is still one of my faves. i can’t seem to find the recipe online but it’s super easy and fun for summer picnics.

personal watermelon (seedless)
english cucumber (seedless and peeled)
lime juice (3-4 tbsp)
salt and pepper to taste

chill in the fridge for a couple hours or overnight. or heck, just eat it right then and there. but if you let it sit overnight, all the juices co-mingle and soak into the melon and cuke. enjoy!


picking up strawberries for homemade jam. i used my last jar this week.


gibson’s 5th grade promotion ceremony was today. he’s officially a middle school dude!

school's...out...for summer!

thursday | may 31:

squashin’ berries. this is kinda my favorite part of the process.Making strawberry jam takes some effort but is soooo worth it!

and the result is a dozen pints of freezer jam.


gibson’s last day of school and of course, grade came home. never been concerned about this box down near the bottom, but today it has so much significance. and just to brag a bit, because he worked really hard, he pulled in the following grades which earned him his ps3 and tv back into his room and friend privileges:

math: A+
reading: B
science: B+
social studies: B
spelling: A
writing: B-


friday | june 1:

it’s a new month of photoaday pics from fatmumslim.

having to be at work at 7am, the road is usually pretty bare.
june 1: morning (love that most mornings my 5 minute commute doesn't include a lot of other cars. #photoadayjune #photoaday #phonto #camera+

my dear hubby posted this picture to my facebook timeline. we have a date people! time to request the day off…


marshall’s making faces at himself as we wait for gibson to finish up comedy class.


saturday | june 2:

marshall has been reading green eggs and ham on the iPad. it’s interactive, of course, with words you can touch and a read to me feature. he’s been reading it for a couple weeks now and today he picked up his actual book and ready it out loud…word for word! i was amazed. not that i should be, he’s almost 5 and he’s pretty smart. but i just hadn’t heard him read the whole entire thing! i usually ask him to say the last lines of sentences when we read. it’s just another sign that he’s ready for school!


my friend kristy at kristymakes started an instagram tag called #lunchis where we can post our daily lunches. this was my first post. my cold chicken pasta and the recipe is here.

#lunchis cold chicken pasta (rotini, chicken, avocado, tomatoes, parm, evoo, lemon juice, pepper and garlic salt

after lunch i hung out with marsh in the pool while gibson hung out at a friend’s house. i literally just dipped my toes in and it was perfect.


he likes to splash.


and tell me funny secrets.


#photoadayjune for today is empty. i had been thinking about it during the day but it wasn’t until the evening that i knew the picture i wanted to take. gibson ended up sleeping over at his buddy’s so his bed was empty for the night. 😦   but he had a blast with his friend who is moving across the country at the end of the summer. more sad faces.

june 2: empty (missing the eldest while he's at a buddy's house) #photoaday #photoadayjune #phonto

so i didn’t tell you that some of that smashed strawberry from the jam didn’t quite make it in the batch. so of course, saving it was the only option. and this my friends is my version of cold stone’s strawberry blonde. slow churned vanilla bean ice cream (1/2 the fat or something like that), a couple spoonfuls of smashed strawberries (no sugar added), and crumbled graham crackers. it’s literally heaven in a bowl. heaven i tell you.


and that was my week. full of fun and food. two things i need to live and smile.

hope you had an equally awesome week! 🙂


enJOYing the rewards

Without labor nothing prospers.  ~Sophocles

we praise hard work in this family. and what’s gonna work? teamwork!

which leads me to this atrocity that we call a backyard. the winter always wreaks havoc on our unmaintainable (is that even a word?) yard and it’s a mess to clean up.

i had no plans to lay a patio this weekend. after all, look at it. it’s all weeds. but gibson mowed so we could at least walk around back there. remember, no intentions of pavers today.


so why did we end up at OSH just hours after the previous photo was taken?

2 reasons: i made some serious cash at our garage sale AND OSH was having a no-tax sale.
soooo, we (gibson and i) grabbed our gloves and headed across the street to get 120 12×12 pavers. 60 in grey and 60 in tan.


two OSH guys and gibson ended up loading up 60 for us to take home on the first load and so i didn’t have to do much but stand around and look pretty while they worked up a sweat.

until we got them home, then we loaded them all to the backyard. and man-o-man it was HOT!


so we took breaks. and when i told gibson we should take a 5 minute break he said, “nah, i only need 3.”


this kid worked so hard. had hustle like i’d never seen. really made us proud.


once we were watered up and cooled off, we realized that we didn’t really have much more left in that second load so we timed ourselves and raced to get them done. and once we got them all stacked, it was time to lay ’em down. yeah, i’m lazy so i didn’t cover the ground with plastic or kill the weeds first. my plan is to just spray the weeds as they come up. it’s how i roll.


super happy that i decided to do a checkerboard pattern. it’s so rad!


gibson’s still at it!


and i was happy to let the two of them enjoy the fruits of all our labor. now i have a clean space to put my gram’s patio furniture and a place to relax while we enjoy the backyard. we will eat, drink and be merry out here.



backyard pinterest projects

it’s about time i clean up the mess that the winter has made of my unlandscaped, and therefore, very unkempt backyard.

a time consuming and labor intensive project that usually brings my mom up to help (she loves it, trust me). but they’re leaving in their 5th wheel and driving from cali to texas to see my big bro and his family so this big project is on us.

and i have big plans this year.

like an actual patio.



and a canopy to we can have some shade.

creating canopies - on a quest to use our far back yard in the heat of summer


and vintage accents.

red & turquoise


and something cute painted on a little white table and bench i have.

wall art made from pallets


and planting pretties in some old wooden plum boxes that i found in my gram’s rafters.

Wooden box planter.


so apparently i have some work cut out for me. one of which has been completed already and i can’t wait to show you!

stay tuned!


oy vey. holy cow. omg. wow!

picture it. nearly 9 o’clock. hubs and i are ready to get to our monday night shows and i flip open the laptop to just check a couple things while he settles in. i noticed i had a couple new likes on my facebook page and several new pinterest followers during the day. i just wanted to peek in and see what had sparked all the activity.

you can imagine me rubbing my eyes, doin’ a double-take, hitting refresh to be sure…when i saw this statistical data last night. i mean check out that blue bar on the right shooting straight up to heaven! what in the world were people looking at to get over 1800 views on my blog yesterday? 1883 to be exact! 

this picture.
this picture of strawberry plants. in cinder blocks.
this idea that i got from a friend.
pinned over 400 times, just from one pinner alone.

see how many times i’ve been pinned

and this sketch.
the post i did on this sketch of my summer garden had 1139 views yesterday…and 397 already today and it’s just barely 8am.

what in the world? not my fabric button rings tutorial? not my scrapbook pages that i put hours into? or even a post on my mad sewing skills? haha, nope. a picture of pants in concrete. i find it so cool and funny!

and thanks goodness people are clicking around too! some of my other posts are getting high view counts as well, but for some reason, this one’s taken the cake. i’m just in awe, really, so i had to share.

you guys (well, gals really) are amazing friends, readers and commenters. i never knew what this blog would be like when i started it less than a year ago. i never really wanted fame or popularity, but just to meet great people, with great ideas who would love my ideas in return. i’ve gotten that, ten fold. regardless of that for a couple days i might see a spike in views and that next week i’ll go back to a daily average somewhere under 100, you are all still right there. and i’m grateful.

thanks. hugs. smiles.


summer activity banner

it’s going to be a summer of doin’ stuff. it just has to be. it doesn’t have to be major trips or expensive activities. it’s going to be little things. things we can just DO. nothing that requires a whole lot of planning…or a whole lot of money.

i started a little list. things i wanted to do with the boys for the summer. it was then that i remembered i saw an idea for a summer fun list somewhere, but i didn’t save the link and now i can’t find the stinkin’ blog that i originally saw it on. i tried i promise. i really wanted to give her credit.

anyway…then i started gathering photos (from the internet and our own family shots) that represented the activity.

i setup a document in publisher and put a line down the centers, horizontally and vertically, to make 4 even squares. then make a text box for each square and add the picture. i duplicated the pages until i had enough to accommodate my list. on each page i changed the text and the pic.

 bam, you’re done. print all the pages.

 now you can cut on those lines you made.

look at all the fun squares you have!

with a ruler, find the center, then make two marks about an inch from the center.

thread a loooooong piece of embroidery floss in through the back and out through the front.

once you’ve threaded all your pieces together, you’re ready to hang them. but of course you’ll need something cute to hang them on. i used 4 push pins and glued matching buttons to the tops of each.

Now you can tie the end of the floss to the push pin and hang them somewhere where everyone can see. i put mine under our counter at eye level with Marshall so he can pick things to do.

so what are you planning for the summer?

I’m all linked up:

     Today's Creative Blog  Thirty Hand Made Days  Tidy Mom  Photobucket Sumo Sweet StuffAnything Related  Weekend Bloggy Reading


backyard box

I like to keep things together. Whether it’s in a pile, a cute tote or a bin, I like to be super organized. It doesn’t always work out but I do try.

This handy idea came to me a few years ago when we really started utilizing our backyard. I was constantly coming in and out of the sliding door, grabbing this, grabbing that. Then getting back outside and realizing I forgot something else. The other reason is that my dearest and most talented hubby’s “editing suite” is right in our kitchen/dining room.

So each time I’m in and out, he’s distracted by the noise and the constant change in light. I know, you must think, how sensitive and crazy is he? Well, when you’re editing highly detailed audio and video, all of your senses are necessary. So in order to not annoy him and enjoy our time in the yard, I developed a backyard box. It started out as a small pail and has evolved into this:

The essentials:

Towels: because there’s always a water fight or the pool is up
Wipes: because popsicles are kinda mandatory
Sunscreen and tanning oil: because the boys need to stay un-burned and mommy needs a little color
Chapstick: because i’m addicted
Hat: because we have like NO shade. no patio cover. just a lonely rainbow umbrella does all the work. hopefully this year he’ll get a friend.
Sunglasses: well I have to be stylish =)
Magazines: because I have issues. It’s either this or a book but when they boys are gettin’ their play on, I’m relaxing.
iPod: because summer isn’t right without tunes!

The items that are not shown but are usually part of the box are:
bug spray: because when Marshall goes to bed, Gibson and I like to read together on the hammock. We usually end up talking and I like that.
Nail supplies: because it’s a perfect time to paint toes and nails
Snacks: because anytime is a good time to eat

What would you put in your backyard box???? I’m sure I’m missing something that I’ll have to go back in for!

how will my garden grow // week 1-2

week 1:

just planted a row of green beans and a row of romaine lettuce.

little baby tomato plants. one grape tomato and one early girl.

only about a third of my strawberries came back this year. but look what they did!

week 2:

strawberries are -a- bloomin

do i see a green bean sproutlet? yip yip.

are they growing? not really sure yet.

little itty bitty lettuce sprouts. i guess i’ll have to thin them out. hmmm, might need to call my mom on this one.

sorry i’m not home right now, i’m walking into spiderwebs…