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Awkward & Awesome


- when you guesstimate that back-to-school supplies and school shoes for three kids will cost you about $100.00 and then you actually spend $240.00. And have to tell your husband.
- that moment when you try to push your cart through the automatic store doors and they won't open, so you back up a little and try again, and then realize they're not broken,  you're just standing in front of a glass window.
- when it's your husband's birthday and you give him a card that says "happy 37 years!" and he raises his eyebrows at you and lets you know that he's 36, not 37, so you laugh at him and say "no silly, you're two years older than me and I'm about to turn 35" and he says "do the math, babe, I was born in 1977". And you realize you don't even know how old you are.

- discovering you are a whole year younger than you thought you were!
- end of summer camping trips before school starts up again... Foster Lake here we come!
- a great deal on a tent trailer for said camping trip. Meet Gertie, the newest member of our household :)

- when your five-year-old still takes afternoon naps with you. (Also, naps in general.)
Bonus: finding his fingers sweetly intertwined like so.

Happy Thursday, folks! See you after the holiday weekend.

What I Wore Wednesday No. 160


Edition: so many outfits this week... what's going on?!

No. 1
to a Mom's group and mid-week church service
Target sweater & top, Banana Republic jeans, Ross sandals

No. 2
to town for a day of grocery & school shopping
Old Navy dress, Target cami & sandals

No. 3
to a family BBQ
Ross dress & belt, Payless sandals

No. 4
to a country wedding
Ross dress (from a friend), Double-H boots, gifted jewelry from Mexico

No. 5
to church
Target tee, clothes swap skirt, thrifted belt, Payless sandals

No. 6
on a date night
Target top & jeans, Famous Footwear wedges

No. 7
to a couple of appointments & meetings
Shade Clothing cami, Target dress, Madden Girl sandals, thrifted bracelet

Annnnnd... I went to another clothing exchange Monday night and came home with these gems... kinda perfect fall colors don't you think?
Add in my new birthday boots (WIWW followers, be in shock. My boot wishes finally came true) and I'm suddenly feeling a little excited for fall. 

Emphasis on little. I'm still a summer lover through and through! 

pleated poppy

Scenes from a country wedding


Pictures from the cutest country wedding we attended last Saturday. No detail was left out... it was adorable from beginning to end.

Congrats Mr. and Mrs. Kimbriel!

Monday Confessional


Many of you are aware that my husband is a bow hunter. I don't think I mentioned though that he bought himself a new bow earlier this summer, which really means he bought himself a new bow, quiver, sight pins, rest, arrows, broadheads, and (soon to come) bow case, because of course his old case didn't fit the new bow.

This translated to about a million dollars (at least, that's what it felt like), and like any good wife I made sure my hard-working husband knew that I was happy for him to splurge on himself, but that I WOULD be getting a new pair of leather boots come my birthday.

That's how things are supposed to work right? ;)

Confession: I will willingly barter with my husband to benefit out of a given situation.

(Pretty sure they don't cover that in premarital counseling.)

So, looky, looky what happened last night!
Wooo, baby! Russ took me boot shopping, and then out to dinner and a movie to celebrate both of our birthdays (his is tomorrow, mine is Friday). It was a really fun date night... especially the boot part :)

What I bought: the Coconuts Britain boot
See ya later, $29.00 Walmart boots that I've worn for the past 3 years straight! You've definitely served your time long enough.

Death by children


Yesterday was our massive back-to-school shopping expedition for school supplies, new backpacks, school, P.E. and soccer shoes, and on top of that, two weeks worth of groceries, which I undertook with all three kids in tow.

Otherwise known as the day I died a slow and painful death. Death by children.
Looking back, it's hard to pick my favorite moment of the day:

- was it when Kendall took Blake to the bathroom for me and came back to report that he'd refused to wash his hands so she'd tried to make him and he'd just laid down on the floor, forcing her to drag him back to me by his legs?

- was it when there was a huge yelling ruckus at the entrance of the Goodwill (best place for soccer cleats!) and a clerk quickly announced "CODE 99, CODE 99" in a panicked voice over the loud speaker and all of a sudden store personnel were flying out of side doors and converging on the chaos while me and the kids hid in the shoe racks with looks of terror on our faces? (Or possibly excited curiosity on my part.)

- was it when Cooper decided, after asking for two months (and being promised) a pair of high top Converse All Stars for school, that he suddenly wanted a pair of no-name skate shoes from Walmart instead (his third pair of skate shoes, mind you), and upon being told no, burst into dramatic tears and went on and on for a good 10 minutes until he lost the privilege to get ANY new shoes?

- or was it when Blake pointed out a man ahead of us in the store and exclaimed loudly over his "weird long neck" for all the world to hear? (An especially shining moment.)

It's a tough call.

I'll tell you this though, up until yesterday I would have sworn that I wasn't even close to ready for summer break to be over. And today? Today I'm singing a slightly different tune.

That being said, the day did have a few upsides when all was said and done.
- We scored some great deals.
- My older two were immensely helpful in grabbing items for me off the shelves and loading and unloading the shopping cart and the car.
- I ran into a friend I hadn't seen in ages at Costco who gushed a little over my blog and made me so happy that I temporarily forget I was ready to do myself in.
- And lastly, after deciding to call it quits after six straight hours, even though I wasn't finished with all the groceries, I came back into town later in the evening alone with my mother and made this happy discovery at Target:
Lindt white chocolate treats for .97 cents each at Target? TOTALLY WORTH A SECOND TRIP TO TOWN. I mean, if my kids had been with me, I would have had to share!

(fyi: I was at Target to secretly buy Cooper's All Stars because I'm not really the meanest mother in the world. He's just going to have to wait a while before I let him know that.)

Awkward & Awesome Thursday


- discovering that while you were away for the day your dog not only escaped out of the house and was returned by your kind neighbor, but that it escaped again, was tied up by the neighbor, escaped a third time, was searched for UP AND DOWN THE ROAD by the neighbor, and was finally tied up "so that she'd never escape it", which explains why you came home to find the dog running loose around the yard with a rope around it's neck. God bless our neighbors... and I guess we have a magician for a dog.
- admitting that you like the chicken & waffles flavored Lay's chips after everyone else tries them and hates them (as in HATES... with a deep and lasting passion) and then feeling judged for your taste buds. Whatcha gonna do?
- finally creating a separate facebook page for your blog so you can share post links without feeling like a shameless self-promoter, and then being too embarrassed to invite any of your friends to "like" it, except for your sister who you send off a quick text invite to, and next thing you know she's replying that she just invited 100 of her friends. Cue acute embarrassment.
- But the "likes" have been fun so if you feel so inclined here's the page: jodalamode on facebook (And yep, that was awkward.)

- watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding with your tween daughter while she laughs and loves it and realizing that gone are the days of having to sit through Barbie and Tinkerbell movies for mother-daughter movie nights. Hallelujah.
- Busting a gut with your husband when your daughter laughingly repeats her favorite subtitled line from the movie "I have three tentacles!" Yes. Yes, that's exactly what he said... 
- Sharing in the excitement and celebration of a sister-in-law who has just been signed by a literary agent to publish her first Christian fiction book! Many happy tears and hugs and squeals of joy. GO CARA!!
- getting invited to three weddings, three weekends in a row. (Sadly this would fit under neither awesome nor awkward in my husband's books but rather, "atrocious".)

What I Wore Wednesday


Hi guys, sheesh it's Wednesday again! The last few days of summer break are going by way to fast to me... I want to drag my feet and make it last longer!

Here's what I've been wearing to summer-only happenings...

No. 1
to the zoo
Maurice's top, Target jeans cut into shorts, Nike flip flops

No. 2
to a garden tea party
Target top, Maurice's skirt & belt, Payless sandals, Old Navy earrings

No. 3
to an outdoor wedding
Maurice's dress & belt, gifted jewelry, Ross sandals

No. 4
to church (ok so that's year round...)
Target dress & sandals, Banana Republic jeans, thrifted bracelet

Here's to the last two weeks of summer freeeeedom! Have a great Wednesday :)

pleated poppy

Furniture makeovers


This summer I've dipped my teeny toe into the pool of DIY projects. 

It started with deciding to paint Kendall's room because it had been the same color since she was 1 year old, and quickly turned into a complete room makeover because, why not. (It still needs some final details finished before revealing).

The first thing I took on was spray painting her desk chair.
Totally fun and easy. (Word to the wise, spray paint goes quickly. Buy two cans.) Kendall was given the stool and already had the pillow so all I had to buy was the paint. 

Next up I took on a much larger project: her dresser.
(This was after Kendall and I had taken the ugly brass handles off and I'd started sanding the top, and BEFORE Kendall dropped the mirror and shattered the glass.)

I enlisted all 3 kids to help sand, they were a great help. 

After the first coat of spray on primer 

And all finished! (New glass still to come.) 

I am exceedingly proud of myself for completing this project because I didn't ask Russ for any help, using online tutorials and youtube videos for the whole process instead. And I can tell you Russ was proud as punch too :)

The room is basically done except for some final decoration items that need to be purchased, items that unfortunately take a back seat to back-to-school supply and clothes shopping. Darn kids who keep growing!

I'll be sure to share it here though when it's done!

Monday Confessional


Confession: the highlight of my weekend was completing a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle. And I didn't even have a boring weekend. Another wedding Friday night (love weddings!), swimming at the river with friends on Saturday, and a surprise visit from guests Sunday afternoon.

I just REALLY love putting together a fun puzzle.

I am an old lady.

(If you weren't sure, read the above sentence in which I used the term "fun puzzle".)

To me fun is something busy with lots of stuff going on (Wasgij's are the absolute best). NOT fun is a picture of giant horse with 855 brown colored pieces!



Cell phone snapshots of questionable quality capturing the awesomeness that is regular ol' life.
That's what instafriday is all about! Follow me on instagram at jodalamode :)

Proud new library card holder!

Evening swim down at the back of our property. Yep, we are lucky.

Advertising our kids' school at a booth at the county fair. Turned out to be a fun (and free) date night!

I won't lie, I signed up for the fair food. Hello, funnel cake!

And the next several pics are from a little garden tea party Kendall and I went to yesterday... 

^^Kendall & Molly^^
^^myself, Beth, & Kate^^
^^Therese, Annie, Emily, & Jana^^

My friend Therese is blessed with the gift of hospitality and leaves no detail out.
It was the loveliest day!

And now onto the weekend! Have a great one, friends.