ruby tuesdays… sister and baby

sister and baby are the best of friends.

big sister and little brother love sister and brother love brother and sister love brother and sisterall day long these two.

 

 

monday rad deals… killer hats under $50

i never thought i would see the day when under $50 for a hat was a rad deal. never. aren’t all hats $24.99? somewhere along the line the price point of hats changed and shifted and what was once a cute little accessory has become an expensive accessory.

myes said to me this week, “mom, do you ever go outside without a hat on?” hmm. not really i guess. with that thought in mind, i realized mama can’t spend $60 bucks on every hat i own so i did some digging and unearthed some gems.

killer deals on hats

1.  tan wide brim fedora $38  2. Felt Slouch Fedora $39 / 3. Piacho Rancher $48 / 4. black cloche hat  $34 / 5.white panama hat $42 / 6. slub knit fedora $20 / 7. pink wide brim felt $38  8. Buckled Band Panama Hat $34 / 9. straw cowboy hat $18 /10. festival felt fedora $39 /

fridays i can’t stop… listening to XM 106 Martha Stewart Craft Hour

fridays i can’t stop… listening to XM 106 Martha Stewart Craft Hour

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i am obsessed i tell you.  Kevin Sharkey, the way you call out paint numbers off the top of your head of a “snow MS 112 sort of creamy white” paint, makes my heart skip a beat.

what can you not stop doing this week? PLEASE share and link to you blog.

moments hoarder… traditions are good

the very earliest memory i have growing up is swimming with my dad at Lake Powell. i remember my orange vest and i remember finding an empty bottle of milk floating around and filling it with water. when my dad got close to me i would dump it on his head, because he was shark following me around with his hand to forehead in typical fin fashion and singing the “Jaws” music. this memory is love.

my family and my hus’ family have gone to lake powell for literally like 40 years. they bought one of the first houseboat on the lake and named it “Friendship”. i could go on and on with memories. i won’t.

for parents lake powell is no luxury vacation, especially if you have little ones. LOTS of planning goes into it. you make your own meals and have to decide how to get said meals to the boat, there is no cell coverage, you clean up after yourself. it is kind of glorified camping on water. the biggest strain though, with little ones, is their safety. you are constantly on high alert. although our family rule is children have to wear their life jackets if they are outside you know how easily the little guys can slip away from you.

BUT this my friends is the beauty of Lake Powell. it forces you to let go of your hang ups, i mean the whole boat is usually sharing two or three bathrooms for heaven’s sake, there is no room on the boat for egos or selfishness and nowhere to go if you get real real mad anyway so you better take a deep breath, let it go, and remember you do annoying things too.

this year my oldest brother and his wife invited us on their new boat “dreamcatcher”, i know, i know, perfect name for ruby.  it is a beautiful boat with all the fancy things that make life real nice out there on the lake.

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so this whole going to the lake tradition thing is good. my heart melted as i saw myes jump in the water and help ruby get her feet back in her wakeboard boots after she ate it. can you imagine how good that felt to her that her big brother jumped, literally, to her side when he saw her need?

ello asked his big cousin noah question after ridiculous question about dinosaurs and noah smiled, snuggled him on the boat and answered them, sometimes challenging ello back. when we left ello had a whole slew of stories and happy memories with his big cousins. noah’s older sister got accepted into a nursing school while we were there and we all got to cheer and celebrate with her. she is like on other, she took the kids on hikes and rowed them in the kayaks and played all her cool college music for us.

my brother, who passed away, left a wonderful kid behind. this time with him is priceless. we chat, we joke, we tell him all about how LP was his dad’s most favorite place in the world. this boy who is not usually exposed to such vivacious activities got to soak up all the newness LP provides. he raced on the wave runner, he dug holes and pits for hours, he went down the water slide and fished and kind of everything.

kids try new things. the kids do brave things they would otherwise not do. their confidence soars as they get up wakeboarding and their family cheers for them.

so yeah, traditions are good. traditions bond us. traditions give my family a sense of who they are and what we are all about.

THINGS WE LEARN FROM LAKE POWELL

1. how to play cards and how to cheat at playing cards.

2. once you bring the food on the boat, it is everyone’s food.

3. big cousins are great for answering little cousins 101 questions about animals and dinosaurs.

4. big cousins make amazing obstacle courses for little cousins.

5. doing yoga on the top of the boat or on a red rock plateau is unforgettable.

6. you have to keep the doors shut.

7. your book will get wet and sandy no matter what.

8. you will lose said book and sunglasses at least once a day.

9. always put your bedding away on top because the day you don’t a storm will come and blow it off into the lake.

10. you will laugh yourself silly.

Below are the 7 essentials to pack outside bathing suits, towels and sunscreen.

what to pack for the lake for families

1. Trucker Hat or Water Proof Hat that can get smashed, because it will. this is not the place for the jcrew panama hat. find the “local” hat ruby and ello are wearing here.

2. aquaphor: if you can find a giant tub of it. get it. we slather the kids chapped cheeks and arms with this at night. the sand is so drying here that dylan puts this on his feet every night with a pair of socks to prevent cracking. sexy.

3. rashguards: the kids may need rash guards if they are wearing their life jackets all day. the life jackets will chaff their chins and around their sleeve line. myes really likes these loose fitting version, they fit just like a t-shirt.

4. water proof shorts for little girls: if you have a little girl it is a good idea to bring one pair of water proof shorts. ruby has insanely sensitive skin so aside from wanting her to have a quick water proof alternative to wearing a wet bathing suit all day,  when she wears the strap of the life jacket that goes between her legs it chaffs her inner thighs. wearing shorts over her suit protects her sensitive skin. she likes the little roxy kind or these athletic shorts from target.

5. rubber sandals: haviannas type sandals work great for the lake because you can rinse them off in the “foot bucket” before boarding the boat and you can wear them while walking around on the sand that often times has little stickers. ello wore his natives and they were so so perfect, they don’t fall off his toddler feet as he loads and unloads onto docks and protected his feet while hiking around.

6. tennis shoes: for hiking. some of the most beautiful hiking is at lake powell, just remember the rocks and sand are red so don’t bring white shoes. the red sand can be hard to remove.

* this post contains affiliate links which means i may receive a fee if you purchase through my blog. it is what keeps this train a runnin. thanks for supporting the blue closet.

books for boys that would way rather be outside…

if your boys are like my boys they will pick playing outside over anything, including reading. although he is a good reader we have struggled to find books that will keep his attention.

last year i started getting him Sports Illustrated for Kids as a way to get him reading. he devours the magazines. he loves seeing who is on the cover and tearing the trading cards out. okay, okay we are getting somewhere. then we noticed one day that sports illustrated had  a series of books for kids all about different sports. we even found books on wakeboarding, bike riding tricks and skateboarding. myes was ecstatic and read through all four books last summer. finally! something he enjoyed.

do you have a boys similar to mine? then they will love these finds…books for active boys books for boys who like sports and skateboarding reading ideas for active boys

 

so i asked myes go grab me your very most favorite books. here is what he came up with:

summer reading for boys

 

1. Dirty Bertie: funniest, although has potty humor…so your call

2. Stink the Incredible Shrinking Kid: funny

3. The Lucky Baseball Bat: good story about believing in yourself and has the sports component

4. Magic Tree House Series: Polar Bears Past Time: lots of kids love this series but this is the only one myes really liked

5. Harry Potter: duh. so good. we read this as a family at night.

6. Hardy Boys Extreme Danger: it involves dirt bikes, so although it is a harder read for him he still likes the adventure.

7. Sports Illustrated Kids Series: includes stories on all sorts of sports you won’t find elsewhere; wakeboarding, snowboarding, gymnastics, wrestling, bmx bikes, skateboarding. They even have a great set for GIRLS that would rather be outside:)

have i told you lately how much i love this kid? he is so intensely loyal to me and his thoughtfulness exceeds all my wildest dreams. he probably tells me once a week how pretty he thinks i am and how special our relationship is and a how he loves my photography. did you just see my heart melt right onto the floor? in. a. puddle.

 

myes and mama leopard print maxi and shirt tying

on myes: shirt $23 / hat by vans $26 / amphibian shorts similar here /

me: hat $32 / shirt ( 7 years old and still kickin) / skirt from a local boutique/ sunnies /c/o necklace