Thursday, July 31, 2014

Vacation, In My Dreams

Just the thought of those words simultaneously makes me smile and want to cry. I smile at the thought of actually going on a real vacation. I cry because I know it just isn't going to happen this year. In an attempt to tame (or tease) my travel bug a bit I put together a list. 

If I was going on vacation here are 5 places that I would love to visit.

1. Walt Disney World.

I know, it is pretty classic and not exactly a relaxing get away. But I have only been one time and before we came home I tearfully made Russ promise me we would go back. Hopefully that will happen late 2015 or early 2016. 

Disney vacation November, 2011

2. Denver

Mountains, beautiful weather, and so much to see and do. Did I mention the Coors Brewery is that way to. Yeah, I am pretty sure we would have plenty to do in Denver. 

3. California

The beach, my grandparents & family, San Francisco, So-Cal, Disney Land. It would be awesome and really hard to squeeze it all in. We might need a few weeks for this one. 

4. Road Trip ~ The Mother Road, Route 66

Okay call me a nerd but the hubby and I dream of traveling Route 66 start to finish. Plus it would get me to Chicago for the start of the trip and take me all the way to California. Downfall this trip seems more like something that would be more enjoyable when we retire or become independently wealthy, whichever happens first ;).

5. International ~ Fiji

Who wouldn't want to go here, seriously?! Now that looks like the relaxation that I could really use. Fiji take me away.

Okay so if you didn't already have a travel bug I am guessing that you do now.

The Travel agency in your dreams is now open. Tell me some places that you would like to visit if you could go anywhere. 

post signature

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

It's The Little Things/ Swimming

My biggest goals for summer this year was to swim. I know that sounds pretty lame and completely expected for summer. But that isn't always the case with us, in fact I don't even think we made a single trip to the pool last year. That is, or should be some sort of summer hypocrisy or crime of some sort.
With swimming being on the top of my summer fun list. We have taken any chance that we find to go. One of the best ways to do that has been attending free swims. Joplin has 3 nice aquatic centers and each park has one day that admission is free for 2 hours. This has allowed us plenty of chances to swim for free!

Here are some pictures from our summer swimming adventures.

We have had so much fun this summer and I am so glad that finally swimming is able to be a consistent part of our summer routine. 


post signature

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Great Donut Quest Continues

This will be the third part of a small series we have been working on.

The quest to find the ULTIMATE DONUT!

Just so you know, in my head I hear a grand echoing voice bellowing that out. .

A couple months ago the girls and I took in upon ourselves to locate the best donut shop in the Joplin area. So far we have posted about 3 shops, you can read about them in our first and second donut posts. After we visited College Station we had plans of making one final stop. But plans changed when we sporadically added another contender to the list with an unplanned donut stop on Saturday morning.

Before we get "all serious" talking about our donut stop I thought it would be fun to share a little donut humor.


Hope you found those as funny as I did. That Brian Regan bit has kept me snickering at donut shops for YEARS now.

The Donut Hole

First off let say the word hole being in the name is completely appropriate. This place was quite a "hole in the wall" It wasn't fancy, or well decorated. But it was full of locals picking up their regular orders, sitting around drinking coffee and catching up on all the new gossip.

This was the display (pardon the blurry thumb picture). That's it! That was all they had. It was about 9:00 and the inventory was pretty low. We placed our order for some cake donuts and a couple glazed that were in the process of being made at the time. 

Marissa would not stop raving about how delicious her strawberry donut was. She said it was the best donut she had ever had. 

After some waiting, these came.

They were still so warm I could barely hold it to take this picture. Words can't even say how delicious it was, UH-mazing. 

So now the donut shop that was the least pleasant to hang out at, had the lowest selection and inventory some how magically has the tastiest donuts we have had so far. And, I haven't even brought up the fact that they are the cheapest to!

How will we ever pick a favorite? Good thing we still have at least one more stop before we have to choose a winner.

What is your hands down favorite kind of donut to eat?
I am a maple bar gal. Leave me a comment and let me know what you like.

post signature

Monday, July 28, 2014

Getting To Know Me, Post #100!

Today marks post number 100!

Wahoo, this feels like something so huge to me. I know some of you are in the hundreds if not thousands so don't laugh to hard at my 100. When I restarted my blogging adventure back in March I didn't know what to expect so 100 post feels pretty great.

Today I am going to do some random ramblings with a quick Q & A. Desiree posted this a while back and I thought it would make a fun "getting to know me" post.

1. What is a nickname only your family calls you?
Cookie. Mostly just my mom. It started when I was very young and she discovered I would eat almost anything for a cookie. 

2. What is a weird habit of yours?
I may just randomly start stretching, I drink coffee and then talk obsessively from a caffeine surge leaving people to think I am crazy. And I am a bit  OCD, aka neat freak. At any given moment I will randomly go on cleaning binges without warning.

3. Do you have any weird phobias?
Severely injuring myself with a knife in the kitchen. But, if you knew how often I have kitchen related injuries you probably wouldn't think this was so weird ;). 

4. What is a song your secretly love to blast and jam to when you are alone?
First off, I always say please don't judge me by the music I listen to when I run. Lately the one that has really been getting me pumped up is Eminem; Loose Yourself.

5. What is one of your biggest pet peeves
Just one? Ha! Ummm.... I guess excuses. I really, really, really don't like them.

6. What's one of your nervous habits?
When I get nervous I get kind of spastic and usually feel the need to pee every 10 minutes. I also tend to turn all red and splotchy on my neck and chest area. So if you ever see me like that, it's a dead give away that something is up!

7. What side of the bed do you sleep on?
The side that is furthest away from the door. Which happens to be the side closest to the bathroom in our house, lucky me.

8. What was your first stuffed animal and what was it's name?
I don't remember it's name.... but I still have it. Technically it is a doll but she is stuffed so I say it counts. 

9. What's the drink you always order at Starbucks?
My tastes are to seasonal to be consistent. In the summer iced caramel macchiato, in the winter salted caramel mocha or a caramel brulee latte. You are totally craving Starbucks right now, aren't you?

10. Which way do you face in the shower?
This is a really weird question.... I usually spend most of my showers going in circles. We also have a bench in the shower so it is nice to just sit down. But when rinsing out my hair I always stand with my back to the water.

11. Do you have any weird body skills?
My bones pop and crack like an 80 year old woman. Does that count? If not, I have nothing. 

12. What is your favorite comfort food, that you know is bad but you eat it anyway?
Cookies....see question #1. Apparently this method must still work. Cookies don't ask questions, cookies understand. 

13. What is a phrase or exclamation that you always say?
In a text: Bahaha, or lol repeatedly, every text.
In real life: GIRLS!, Hang on a minute, That's not good or my Spanish version, no bueno. I also say I don't know a lot. 

14. What do you wear when you go to sleep?
T-shirt and shorts. Yup, really fancy here folks. 

15. What did you used to wear that you thought was cool, and now you realize it wasn't?      I had quite an array of thrift store/yard sale finds from polyester shirts, bell bottoms and Mr. Rogers sweaters. I thought I was being so cool by being retro and different. It is terrifying to think about really. Why didn't somebody stop me! 

Well that wraps up post #100! Here is to 100 more!

Thanks for reading along. If you decide to answer these questions to leave the link in the comments so I can come check out your answers. 

post signature

Friday, July 25, 2014

Oh Hey Friday: Week 2

Friday is finally here once again. This week has been our last completely free week before school starts up on August 11th. So Friday already being here is a little bittersweet.
Here are this weeks FIVE 

{ONE} Swim Lessons

Next week will be a big schedule change for us. We start up 2 weeks of Monday-Thursday swim lessons. Sure they may only be from 10-10:45 but having the middle of our morning "interrupted" for almost two weeks will be a big change. But it is definitely one we are excited about. I am hopeful the girls will make some swimming progress and have a lot of fun.

{TWO} Monthly Blog Contributor

I am SO excited to announce that I was picked to be a monthly blog contributor at Beauty Through Imperfection. For the next 6 months I will be guest posting monthly on Paula's page. My first post should be in about a week. For now you can go check out her awesome blog, and say hello while you are there!

{THREE} This necklace

Isn't it lovely? A bit impractical at the present moment but definitely something I would love to have in about 10 years. 

{FOUR} The best search engine... EVER

You know it's true. Please, tell me I am not the only one who feels this way.

{FIVE} Instagram
Here are a few favorite pictures from Instagram lately.
Follow @ourprettylittlegirlsblog so you don't miss out on anything.


Have a great weekend!

post signature

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Runners Do More Than Run

Today I am linking up with The Chronicles of We and Macke Monologues. These lovely ladies are hosting a virtual 5K that is coming up on September 13th. If you haven't already registered you should! 

This week they have invited us to link up and share our training plans. Since I am already trained for over a 5K distance and don't have plans to work on speed right now, I don't really have a specific training plan set for this race. I thought I would use this as a chance to share with you a few things that I have learned about training over my past year of living a runners life. 

First off let me just say I don't want to sound like the "perfect" runner who does everything just as is it should be. I don't, I never will, it is hard to make time to do what feels like even more work. But when I do I notice positive improvements in the way I feel and in my running. 

{Cross training}

When I started running longer distances I was told I needed to cross train. I had to Google search what exactly that meant. I thought it meant that there must be some particular cross training apparatus that I needed to find and use. Cross training isn't nearly as hard or intimidating as it sounds. Simply put it is just doing some other form of exercise other than running.

Cross training will vary depending on your access to equipment. But consider everything from weights, elliptical, workout videos and everything in between! On a typical week I cross train 2-3 days a week, on the days that I am not running.


This is a new one for me, like just this week. After months of hearing that runners can benefit from yoga I finally decided to give it a try. I have been doing an online video but I look forward to checking out a class at my local gym. 

If your looking for somewhere to start try this video.

{Foam Rolling}

This over sized pool noodle has often been one of my best friends.

It is the perfect way to relieve muscle tension, correct imbalances and help correct and prevent injuries. I would recommend doing some research before jumping on one of these there are proper and improper ways to go about rolling. 

{PROPERLY stretching}

I am pretty sure that I had been running for about 7 months before I learned that there are two types of stretching (dynamic and static) and that I was going about things all wrong. Learning what is best for the muscles and combining that with what works best for MY body has been a powerful tool. I also can always tell when I take the time to really stretch after a long run and when I skip it. It has a huge affect on how I feel and how quickly I recover. 

Stretching is always worth the time. 

{Squats, Lunges and Planks}

I will never forget going into my local running store to get fitted for shoes the first time. I explained some problems I was having and the guys said you have a weak butt. No hesitation, he blurted it out just like that. I didn't know how to respond, but my head was screaming "You don't know me!" Thankfully I didn't have to say anything. He told me exactly what I needed to do to fix things, squats, lunges and core strength.

30 day plans can be helpful, or just find a routine. It doesn't take long to bust out 20 squats spread them across the day and you will be feeling the benefits in a matter of weeks. This is one area that I don't always do so well in, but I am trying. I started this 30 day challenge a couple days ago, join me if you would like!

So there you have it. 5 ways you can become a better runner without running.

How do you like to train without logging miles?

post signature

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

It's The Little Things/ Summer Picnic

With the first day of school quickly approaching and swimming lessons starting up next week, I am starting to realize that our summer fun days are definitely numbered. So, we are "living it up" this week and that means having a picnic in the park with friends.

We met up at a local nature center with plans of going exploring. We didn't have to go far (or really anywhere) before the kids found the perfect spot to play. 

There it is, a bridge, water and rocks. Everything they needed to happily play for over an hour. 

And play they did.

They started out clean and dry, but they didn't stay that way for long. Especially the boys!

A little planking? She learned that from me :).

They pretended to be billy goats and a grumpy troll. 

And sat by the water. 

We played until we were to hungry to keep on, so we had a picnic.

Then we played some more.

They were just so sure they could some how climb this tree.

We had a great time and managed to stay cool enough to enjoy it... Until we went for a 1 mile walk at the end and nearly melted. No picture necessary!

Summer picnic, CHECK!

Have you been on a picnic lately?

post signature