10 Reasons the Most STRESSFUL “Relaxing” Vacation for Parents is … The BEACH!

10 Reasons the Beach is the most stressful relaxing vacation for parentsIf I had my choice of where to go for vacation, it would be the beach. Every. Dang. Time. There is something so calming and relaxing about sitting with your toes in the sand, feeling the ocean breeze, and the sun shining on your face as you gaze out at the crashing waves.

When Eric and I were newlyweds, we would go any chance we got. Everything I needed was in my cute, little monogrammed tote. We would lie on the beach for hours upon hours. Talking. Reading. Listening to Jimmy Buffett. Drifting in and out of sleep. It was glorious and so relaxing.

Now that we are a family of five, it is still our favorite place to go, but it is far from relaxing. We don’t travel a lot, but our week at the beach is held sacred to us. Eric works so hard to provide for our family, and it is a week to just enjoy time with each other. What better setting to do that than the beach?

As much as I love our annual beach trip, it also can be incredibly stressful. Here are 10 reasons why going to the beach is the most stressful “relaxing” vacation for parents:

  1. Packed to the Gills. It starts weeks before as I make piles of stuff we can’t forget. We couldn’t eat on our breakfast table for two weeks because of the piles of sunscreen, beach towels and random kitchen stuff we needed for our condo. I continue to make piles of clothes, sand toys, chairs, and tents. By the time I am done, it consumes half of our garage. Then Eric (aka – the master packer) has the not so small task to fit all of it in our SUV. Even though it is all ready to go the night before, the master packer waits until an hour before we leave to put it in the vehicle. Breathe in. Breathe out. Miraculously, he gets it all in and we are on the road. Then we make our first right turn and a tower of pool noodles tumbles on Matthew in the back seat.
  2. The Drive. When I went on road trips with my girlfriends in college, it was a blast. We listened to mix tapes, read Cosmo, and laughed until Diet Coke came out of our noses. Getting there was almost as much fun as the destination. Once you have kids, it is the exact opposite. We make a tick mark sheet for the number of times our kids ask “are we there yet?”  By the time we get there and the ticks consume an entire page, Eric and I are laughing like maniacs. The kids probably have their own tick sheets for the number of times I say “Keep your hands to yourself!” And to make matters worse, I-65 in Alabama is a nightmare. What genius decided to close lanes on one of the main corridors to the beach weekends in the summer??? Eric tortures himself by staring at his “trip average mph” on the dashboard going down, down, down. No, we are not there yet. As soon as we get going a decent speed, we hear “I gotta go poop” from the backseat.
  3. Sunscream.  I am kind of a maniac about sunscreen. It takes me a good 20 minutes to slather the 50 SPF on every square inch of my three kids. (Can’t forget the booty cracks that inevitably peak out! My son has the tannest top inch of his crack this side of the Mississippi.) It is impossible for them to stand still. I either have to chase them around the condo to lotion them up or plant them in front of the TV to put them in a Disney trance. I am just soooo thankful they are finally old enough to know to not rub their eyes. That was the worst when they got sunscream in their eyes. Inevitably they would then rub their eyes with their sandy hands. Do not miss those days one bit.
  4. I’m a Pack Mule. The amount of stuff that we bring to the beach is epic. We have tried wagons, huge bags, anything we can use to get all our crap down to the beach in as few trips as possible. Eric and I will load up with bags, coolers, chairs, tents, sand toys, and more sunscream. Then the kids will complain when we ask them to carry a towel. By the time we make it down to our spot, my flip flops weigh ten pounds from all the sand that has collected in them. We spend 20 minutes getting everyone and everything set and then we hear – “ I gotta go poop.” Rock, Paper, Scissors over who takes Poops Magee back to the condo.
  5. But I wanna go to the pool. So you finally have your little beach oasis set up. Kids Pottied. Chairs out. Umbrella Up. Sand toys properly strewn about. Boogie Boards ready to boogie in the surf. We finally sit down to take a breath and look at the ocean. And the kids start whining, “I wanna go to the pool now!!” Really? We could go the pool every dang day in Tennessee. So then you have to bargain whine free beach time so that they can have pool time after lunch. Which will most definitely not be wine free for mama after the morning.
  6. Water. Our kids are finally old enough that they can venture into shallow water without me being right by their side. Holla!! But of course, there were reports of shark attacks the week before we left in none other than shallow waters. So although I am allowing them to test the waters with their newfound independence, my eyes are constantly scanning the water for danger. Drowning kids. Jellyfish. Sharknado. Why did I bother loading down my Kindle with new reads?
  7. Sand, Sand, and more Sand. Nothing makes me happier than sinking my toes in the sugar beach. The kids love to play in it. Heck they roll around in it making sure they get as many granules in their scalp, ears, and booty cracks. But I want to leave all that sand at the beach. No amount of hosing off, showering, or bathing can get it all off. I can’t even walk around our condo barefoot because the sand on the floors drives me straight up crazy. Don’t even talk to me about the sand that we are bringing home in our suitcases despite my efforts to get it all out.
  8. Family Pictures are a Beach.  You spend a lot of time and money for the perfect picture that says “look how cute, color coordinated and happy my family is!!”  Bribes are made with ice cream if they just for the love of God smile and quit pinching their sister. When that doesn’t work, you threaten no beach through clinched teeth and a plastered on smile. And thank God for digital cameras. Ten years ago, you would have done all that and gotten your pics back days later after you dropped them off to get developed. You remember…you would get this beloved box chock full of what you know are the best pictures ever. You couldn’t even wait to get home to look at them. You would sit in your hot car and frantically flip through your pictures. And the best one looked like this:

Family Beach picture FAIL

  1. Eating Out is for the Birds.  It really is a perfect storm. The kids are tired from staying up later and playing hard all day. They are mad because I made them put on actual clothes.  There is always a wait to be seated because it is the summer and it is the beach. By the time we are seated, everyone’s blood sugar is low, we are grumpy, and we are just trying to get through the meal so we can go home. Why did we spend so much money to do this?
  2. The Drive Home Straight Up SUCKS. It is just as long of a drive (if not longer, thank you again Alabama interstates), but you don’t have the benefit of the pre-vacation adrenaline hyperness. You just have a car full of sand that makes you depressed, dirty laundry, and tired, cranky kids. But you can eat a fat cheeseburger without the guilt of living in a swimsuit the next week, so there’s that. 

Truth be known. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat (and a good night sleep) just to see this one more time…

Kids playing in the Ocean

Morning “Run”

"Morning Run"My husband, Eric, got me a fitbit for my birthday a few weeks ago.  It was the perfect gift for me.  I have always been a very active person and this has given me an extra motivation to push myself more.  It sits there on my left wrist taunting me with its blinking lights.  Get up and get more steps!  

It has also encouraged me to mix up my workout routine that I have had for the last several years.  As a result, I have started getting up with the sun to run.  (ok not necessarily run.  I walk.  But really fast and with some mama hills.  Running just sounds better.  I haven’t run a mile since high school when I had to for P.E.  If you see me run today, you better run girl.  There is likely a zombie after me and he will get me first because I am slow.)

Anywho, I have been really good about my morning routine.  I get up around 5 and go run 2-3 miles.  It has also helped me get back into a much needed routine.  My quiet time with God.  I spend the first 30 minutes or so praying.  Prayers of thanksgiving, for the needs of my loved ones and for myself easily fill up half an hour.  It is the perfect way to start the day off by getting myself in tune with God.

This week my family has been at the beach and I have continued with my new routine.  Go Me!  When you have the ocean and the sand as your backdrop, it isn’t hard to find motivation.  The first part of my prayer usually centers around just how awesome God is.  Nothing to do with me.  Just Him.  As I looked out at this amazing ocean and see the power and majestic waves crashing on the shore, it isn’t hard to see how awesome He is.  He created all of this.

As I looked out in the water, I saw a few dolphins swimming.  Every so often they would playfully bob out over the surface and give me a little show.  How loving is our God.  He not only made these amazing animals, He knew how much joy they would bring his children.  Think about the crazy things we do to make our babies smile and multiply that exponentially.  That is our God.

I ran further down the beach and saw the perfect unblemished conch shell in the surf.  I dove to get it for my sweet girl.  There were thousands of seashells scattered all over the beach.  None of them the same.  All of them different.  How creative is our God. He didn’t have to do that.  But our God isn’t just a utilitarian.  He is awesome.

Then those majestic waves grind up those beautiful shells to create the most beautiful sugar white beaches.  The sand would be a home for thousands of creatures He created.  But it would also bring much needed relaxation and pleasure to His children.  How caring is our God?

So as I wrap up my favorite week of the year, I will do it with a grateful heart to an awesome God who created this beautiful world for me…His child.


Stuff Steph Loves – 7 Steps to Taming Curly Hair!!

Stuff Steph Loves - 7 Steps to Taming Curly HairMy best features are my feet and my hair. Everything in between is so-so 😉

I have little feet that look good in most shoes. And I am also the only one in my household that doesn’t have jacked up toes. (High standards here!) I love my feet and have a shoe wardrobe that confirms that.

I also have long, thick, wavy/curly hair. The funny thing is that I have straightened it most of my life. I could do another blog post about embracing who you are and not fighting it. (Oh no wait – I already did! Right Here 🙂

It took my husband having over a foot of his colon removed for me to realize I should embrace the hair that God gave me. What does my husband’s semi colon have to do with my hair? (Bada bump! Semi Colon!! Get it??!! It is my dad’s joke and it never gets old!!)

But I digress, it was a serious surgery that landed Eric in the hospital for almost a week. Our parents were wonderful to help with our three kids, so I could stay with him in the hospital. I rushed home to shower and kiss the kids before I went back to the hospital each day. One day I skipped drying my hair because it just took too long. I had never gotten so many compliments on hair as when I left it curly. Well that was all it took for me to embrace my natural hair. Looks better and was a heckuva lot easier? Yes, please!!

Curly hair is tough to figure out how to work with though. And I am not at all saying that I have mastered it! However, I have found what works best for me. I have been asked several times to write down the products I use or to send a picture of my stash. So voila. Instant blog post.

Here Are My 7 Steps to Taming Curly Hair:

  1. Get a Good Hair Stylist – I think the most important thing with curly hair is to find a good stylist. My hairstylist, Audrey, is so good with curly hair. She knows just how to cut it so that it lightens the weight and my curls aren’t weighed down. She does it just right so that it doesn’t look choppy either. I find the best way to find a good stylist is to ask someone who has similar hair that you love!
  1. Quit Washing Your Hair – Well not all together because that would just be gross. My stylist was also able to educate me on how best to take care of my hair so that it doesn’t get too frizzy. I found out that I was washing my hair way too much and it was stripping the natural oils from my hair. I had been washing my hair every day. I liked a wet palette 😉 Now I wash my hair Sunday morning (Jesus deserves clean hair) and Wednesday morning. That in itself made a HUGE difference with the frizz factor. 
  1. Dry Shampoo is Your Friend, Dirty Girl– The transition was hard for me when I stopped washing my hair every day. My Batiste Dry Shampoofriend, Ginger, introduced me to dry shampoo and that helped a TON. I found that I love Batiste. Being a brunette, I absolutely love that they have a formula specifically for dark hair so you don’t get white/grey spots. Nothing worse than having a granny spot from your dry shampoo! Make sure you hold the can about 6 inches from your roots when you spray. I spray then flip my head upside down use my fingers to work it into my roots. Flip back over – instant “clean hair” with a little more golume and it smells AMAZING.
  1. My BB Concoction – On days that I wash my hair or even just wet it, I have magical little BumblB&B productse and Bumble concoction that I use. First I towel dry my hair – patting not rubbing – think frizz!! In the summer I use three products: Bb Curl Conscious Calming Crème, Bb Curl Conscious Defining Crème, and Bb Grooming Crème. (I add the Calming Crème in the more humid months to give my hair an extra frizz fighter!) I squeeze a dime size of each in my palm and mix them all together. I have a lot of hair, so you may not need as much. I work them into my hair from the ends to my roots. These products are awesome, but they are expensive. We are talking around $30 a pop which is kind of crazy. However, you don’t use a lot so they will last you a long time…like several months. And I don’t use them every day. If I wear my hair up, I use my drug store go to – L’Oreal Curve It. Works well with no crunchy curls, but it just doesn’t define my curls as well. But who cares? My hair is up!
  1. Get a good diffuser. I generally blow dry my hair. If I let it air dry, it won’t be dry until I go to bed since I have so much hair! When I do let it air dry, my hair is more wavy than curly. The diffuser helps my curls spring up a bit more. I don’t have a fancy one. I just got whatever hairdryer had a diffuser that attached at Target. When I dry my hair, I flip my head over to dry the top then flip it back to do the bottom layer.
  1. My Secret Weapon – Audrey introduced me to my favorite product ever this spring. It is Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray. ISurf Spray spray it on my hair when it is about 85% dry. You gotta be careful with this though! Not too heavy or you will look like you have been taken out by a wave not gently spritzed with the ocean surf 😉 We are heading to the beach next week and we will see who does a better job – The Ocean or my Surf Spray!
  1. Finishing Touches – On days that I want to be a little fancier – and let’s be honest, that’s most days – I go the extra mile. I have a 1.5” curling iron that I spiral curl the top layer of hair. The important thing to do if you curl, is to rotate the way you curl, so they don’t stick together in one big ole curly cue. So I curl one forward then the next towards the back. I focus on the ones around my face and the top layer around the rest of my head. Flip my head, fluff so they don’t look so sculpted, and Voila! On days that I did not wash my hair, I spray the dry shampoo on before I fluff and separate the curls.

From the time I step into the shower to when I step in front of the kitchen island to start my duties as short order breakfast cook, it takes me an hour. Maybe a little longer if I am reading my Kindle while I am getting ready and I am at a good part 😉 Of course as I mentioned, that is because I have a lot of hair. On days I need to get up and go a little more quickly, I have a few easy up-do’s that are easy and look fancier than a ponytail.

Because if you can’t tell, I am a little high maintenance. But that is ok, I am embracing who I am. High maintenance with pretty cute curly hair.

Steph Close Up

10 Ways I Can Help My Daughter Have the Confidence It Took Me 30 Years To Find

10 Ways I can Help My Daughter Have Confidence It Took Me 30 Years to Find
Last week I celebrated my 38th birthday. It amazes me to think that not too long ago, I used to think being 38 was old. In reality, at 38, I finally feel comfortable in my skin. No, I am not talking about having the confidence to strut my stuff at the neighborhood swimming pool. After birthing 3 kids – 2 of them at the same time – I only got the confidence to venture into bikini territory last year… And it took a lot of inner pep talks…And if I have to walk more than three feet, you better believe I am reaching for the cover up!

No. My outer appearance is just a small portion of who I am. Unfortunately, as women, that tends to be what we struggle with the most. My 8-year old daughter, Ella, is just now starting to notice her appearance. Of course I want her to feel beautiful, but I want her to feel confident in all the many qualities that make her so special. 

Here are 10 ways I  can be intentional in my parenting, so  I can help my sweet girl gain some of the confidence that it took me 30 years to find:

  1. God’s Girl – Remind her that God created her just the way He wanted her to be. He knew exactly how to make the best Ella, and He does not make mistakes. “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14. That really should be enough said, but since we are human, there are numbers 2 – 10 😉
  2. Unique Girl – Embrace your differences and don’t be ashamed of them. Those differences are what make you unique! When I was little, I hated my freckles and would try to cover them up. Now that I am in my late 30s, I love that they make me look younger. My kids actually get excited when new freckles pop up in the summer because not everyone gets to have freckles. Within the last week, my face has sprouted at least 100 new freckles from our pool time. And I love every one.
  3. Healthy Girl – Teach her to take care of herself in a healthy way. I think this is so incredibly important as they are growing. Their little bodies are growing and changing so quickly. Often times they are growing at different rates than their friends. At such a young age, they are already hyper aware of being bigger or smaller than their peers. I encourage my kids to make healthy choices in terms of their nutrition and physical activity. I want them to grow to have a complete healthy lifestyle. They have balanced meals, are active, but look forward to treats too. I do not talk about dieting or weight. EVER.   I talk about being healthy, strong and taking care of the body that God gave them.
  4. Complete Girl. Build her confidence with praise about all aspects of her. We wonder why girls allow their confidence to be tied so closely to their appearance. Most likely because most of our compliments usually are geared towards that!   You look so pretty! I love your dress!! When they are kind to their siblings, recognize that. If they answer a question correctly, praise their intellect. If they use good manners, encourage them to continue. And absolutely tell her that you think she is the most beautiful girl in the world. She needs to hear that from you too. She needs praise about her total package!
  5. Daddy’s Girl – Fathers play a HUGE part in their daughter’s confidence today and for the rest of her life. My husband, Eric, is always a great example of how a gentleman treats a lady. Whether it is what she experiences first hand on their Daddy Daughter dates or what she observes in how he treats me, she will know how she should be respected. Eric’s greatest fear is that Ella will date a jerk.  Talk about a way to kill her confidence before she even finds it! If we show her and talk to her about how she deserves to be treated, then she will not settle for anything less. Just in case, Daddy has a shotgun and isn’t afraid to use it 😉
  6. Good Girls – It is so important for our daughters to have a good group of supportive friends. Since I am her social secretary, I can encourage friendships with girls that are kind and a positive influence. As much as I hope that Ella will always come to me when she is sad, I know she will talk to her friends too. She needs to have friends that will build her up, not knock her down to make them feel better about themselves. There is no room in my daughter’s life for mean girls.
  7. Independent Girl –  I taught two-year olds in preschool last year. At every parent teacher conference, I encouraged the parents to let their child do more on their own. Then I would go home and micromanage my own! I had to let her spread her wings too! She could do so much more than I was letting her do. When she tries something new and succeeds, the pride on her face is priceless. Yes! I can do that! Whether it is doing chores or helping fix dinner, they all give her a sense of accomplishment when she masters them. And even if it is something little like picking out her own clothes for school, she is fostering her own identity. (Even if she looks like Punky Brewster!)
  8. Persistent Girl – Try and Try Again. Encourage her to keep trying until she finds her unique talents. Maybe she will get lucky and find her niche right off the bat. Maybe she will go through 10 activities until she finds something that she feels good about. Maybe she won’t discover her talent and passion until she is 37 like me. Don’t let her give up trying.
  9. No Shame, Girl!! Sometimes we have to let them spread their little wings and let them fail. As a mom, this is probably the hardest thing because we want to help them succeed. However, sometimes getting knocked down is the best way to build confidence from within Knowing that life doesn’t end when she fails at something, will give her to confidence to try again.

All that being said, I am still a work in progress. I sat on a conference call last week in tears. It was to help me get prepared for upcoming appointment with book publishers, and I felt so overwhelmed…inadequate…not at all confident. I looked over at my notebook where I was brainstorming ideas for this post and thought, “Ha! What a joke. Why the hell am I writing about having confidence??” And then it hit me. Confidence isn’t just doing something that you know you can do. Confidence is having the courage to try knowing you may fail. 

So my last bullet point is this:

10.  Get Real Girl. Let your daughter see that you aren’t perfect and you have insecurities too.  However, you don’t let them rule you.  You face them head on through prayer and the support of your family and friends.  And even if you do fail, it isn’t the end of the world and you are gonna keep on trying.

Confident Girl

I Am Your MAMA Not Your Cruise Director!!

I lay in bed relishing the last few minutes of peace before the day starts. I sense that someone is standing next to my bed. I roll over and open my eyes.

Ethan’s head is inches from my face. “What are we doing today??”

It is 6:17 a.m. I haven’t even fully woken up yet.

I roll out of bed. Rub my eyes and trudge into the bathroom. Matthew bursts through the door. He gives me a quick hug, grabs my face, pulls me down so that we are eye to eye, and asks intently, “What are we doing today??”

It is 6:20 a.m. I haven’t even had time to brush my teeth yet. (Nor has Matthew – holy morning breath!)

I stand in the kitchen trying to decide what we will have for breakfast. Eggos? Mini Pancakes? Cereal? Muffins? “What are we doing today??” Ella asks, making me jump. I didn’t even hear the little ninja get out of bed.

It is 6:36 a.m. I haven’t even had any caffeine yet.

“Can we go to the zoo?”

“No. I want to go to the pool!”

“We still haven’t gone to the American Girl store yet and it is sooo unfair!”

I whirl around to see all three Greer kids anxiously awaiting my answer. “Who do you think I am? Your cruise director??”

Blank stares. Oh yea. They have never been on a cruise, so they don’t have a clue what a cruise director is or what they do. But to answer my question – YES that is exactly what they think I am!

Cruise Director

When did I become this tap dancing monkey? Oh yea. When I gave birth to these amazingly adorable kids. No back that up – the second I even got pregnant with them, I knew my life was forever changed and I would do anything for them.

That hasn’t changed, but I realized that sometimes doing anything and everything for them is not the best thing I can do for them as their Mama.

Alas, I will still strap on my dancing shoes and take them to the zoo, the jumpy place that makes my skin crawl, and the pool every pretty day I can. I am extremely grateful that I can be a stay at home mom and am blessed to be able to enjoy my children’s summer vacation with them.

However, although I don’t receive a paycheck, I very much still have a full time job taking care of my family of five. Laundry to be folded. 3 meals a day to be prepared. A house to be cleaned and then cleaned again when they undo what I just cleaned 😉 All that along with lots of other little things that add up to much more that a full time job!

So on those days when Mama just has too much to do or just needs a break, these kids are going to kick it old school. You know. PLAY OUTSIDE. Build a fort out of blankets. Do some chores. Play a board game. READ A BOOK. Play with the 38 Barbies in the closet. Walk the dog. Have a dance party. USE THEIR IMAGINATION.

Day 19 of Summer of 2015.

58 days to go. It will be over before we know it.

Make it the MOST for EVERYone in the family!

Stuff Steph Loves – BANDED

I don’t know about you, but when I find stuff that I love, I want to tell my girlfriends all about it. I often text my best friend, Jodi, a picture of something that I discovered I can’t live without. I can’t text you all, but I can have a regular post where I write “Stuff Steph Loves!”

I will highlight things that make my life either easier or more rich. In some instances, you find something that does both. BAM!  First example – Banded hair bands. (http://www.banded2gether.com) My friend, Laura, introduced me to Banded this year.

Banded headband & Scarf

Here are a few reasons why Steph LOVES Banded:

  1. They fit my peanut head and STAY. I have a lot of hair, but my actual head is pretty small. I can still wear a child sized hat J It is impossible for me to find a band that fits my head and isn’t too loose. In fact, my 8-year old daughter has enjoyed wearing her Banded too! (Of course, she prefers the sparkly ones!) I wore one on Saturday from when I got up at 5:30 all the way until I passed out that night. I never had to adjust it once. That was through a work out, pool time, yard work and a run. Never touched it once. And if you have a big head – no worries. I made Eric try it on and he rocked it too 😉
  1. It tamed the Sloth Hair. I have this little half-inch section of hair right in the front that has been dubbed my “sloth hair.” It can wiggle its way free from any hairstyle I do. No matter how many bobby pins or how tight I braid my hair, it will wiggle out. It got its name when I was in college. I was being goofy with my roommates who were several floors below in a parking lot. I stuck my head out the window and yelled, “Heeey Yoooou Guuuuys!!” like Sloth on The Goonies. (Because that is what you do when you have finals to study for and don’t want to.) The hair had wiggled out and was flapping in the wind. Hence my annoying hair’s nickname “Sloth.” Anywho – Sloth was tamed and I never had to tuck or pin it back all day.
  1. I can be fancy and still be lazy. I am notorious for being overdressed for everything. I can’t help it. I like to be put together. My Banded instantly makes my ponytail fancy pants. They have so many different styles, widths, and colors. It is tough to narrow it down! I loved the wild prints, where my daughter, Ella, went straight for the bling in the glitter ones. If you aren’t as glitzy as us, they have sweet and simple too 😉
  1. No Pain. And Speaking of my sweet girl, Ella, she suffers from migraineGirls in the Banded!s.  Because of this, she usually can’t wear her hair in a headband or even in a ponytail for very long before it makes her head start to hurt.  She didn’t have the first issue with her Banded.  She wore it all day pain-free.  She forgot she even had it on at bath time!  For a little girl who has been longing to accessorize – this is HUGE!  For a mama who has wanted to be able to do something to get her hair out of her face – this is HUGE!
  1. They are not just headbands. I love me a good headband, but that isn’t all there is to Banded! They have expanded their product line to include scarves, tees and more. I have the Beach Party Layered scarf and it is fabulous. It is sooo soft and lightweight. Their tees are also made out of super soft fabric that is down right luxurious.
  1. Rewards for their Customers. Not only are they generous with these charities, they are generous with their customers. They have a referral program to help spread the word. When you become a BANDED Ambassador, you receive a $3 reward for EVERY friend that purchases through your referral! It’s as simple as that and there is no limit to how many friends you can refer or how many rewards you can earn!
  1. Absolutely GREAT cause. That last but certainly not the least reason I LOVE Banded is because they support 2 wonderful ministries. The first is Amazima Ministries, that helps provide meals for children in Uganda. Each product purchased provides 3 Meals for Amazima’s daily feeding programs. So far this year Banded customers have helped provide over 1.6 MILLION meals! And their goal is to provide 5 MILLION this year – it is their 5/15 campaign. How AWESOME is that? They also give 10% of all on-line purchases to the T.J. Martell Foundation. The T.J. Martell Foundation is the music industry’s largest foundation that funds innovative medical research focused on finding cures for leukemia, cancer and AIDS.  I don’t know about you, but the idea of getting a quality product that is incredibly stylish AND gives back in a very BIG way, is awesome!

Check them out!!


Edited to Add January 2016:

More reasons to LOVE Banded!!!  They have further broadened their line of fab headbands.  Case and point – my new Winter headband that kept my ears toasty (and stylish) while Ethan and I went sledding yesterday. Southern Lady-7 I also got my little hands on their new athletic hand bands that are coming out.  Y’all….so cute and so comfortable.  One is made with a special wicking fabric that is reversible.  Two headbands in one!!  While another one has an exclusive odor reducing liner made with bamboo fabric.  You read that right…bamboo.

Totally stepped up my workout gear, so I look really serious about my fitness instead of being too lazy to get dressed 😉

Happy Monday – Let’s Do SOMETHING!

Every night after dinner, my family and I take the dog, Lady, for a walk. We walk around the neighborhood and talk about our days, tell jokes, and are often quizzed about anything and everything. Last night our six year old, Matthew, and I were walking hand in hand. As usual, he was quizzing me. Sometimes it is about things he learned in Kindergarten and some times it is about deep things. I often struggle to answer both!  I can’t remember all the word blend rules dang it!! “Mommy. Can you do nothing?” he asked. After a long, long day, I laughed and said, “Matthew, I could easily do nothing tonight!” He quickly corrected me and said, “No you couldn’t. Even if you were laying down you would be doing something.” “I suppose you are right, Matthew!” I agreed. Then he continued, “You see, God made us so that we had to be doing something all the time. So if you have to do something, then you better make it SOMETHING.”  He wiggled his eyes for emphasis 🙂

Do Something! I love how simply he sees things.

He is right. God made you to do something. Let’s make it something awesome today!