SNAPPY CASUAL

Family adventures + simple fashion + other lovely things

a step of faith

faith, adventure, familykelsey williams6 Comments
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My husband quit his job today.

It feels a little crazy, but it's been a long time coming. We've been talking about it for at least two years! He's always wanted to start his own business or work for himself, but until now the timing hasn't felt quite right.

Eric's an incredibly hard worker and I'm so proud that he's finally taking a step toward his dream. He'll be doing financial coaching, helping people get on a budget and stick to it. He's already helped lots of people this way - now he gets to dedicate even more time to it. He won't be completely on this own, as his friend Justin has taken him under his wing and Eric will be partnering with his already-established consulting business, Strong Tower (new website coming soon!).

It will be the first time in a very long time that we're both enjoying what we're doing all day, which will be really good for our sanity and our family as a whole. This was definitely a step that needed to take place before we try for another child (we have both learned that if we are going to spend time away from our child(ren) that it is going to be doing something that we love and truly believe in).

I think if I was reading this on someone else's blog (and I have! many times!), I would think "That's so awesome! They're so brave! They're following their dreams! I can't wait to see how God shows up!" I certainly get glimpses of that perspective, but when it's your budget, your family...it can be really scary. There will be no steady paycheck. Our lifestyle may need to change. Our basement project has been put on hold. There are lots of unknowns. But, this decision feels right for our family right now - I really trust Eric and admire his desire to do work that helps others. I'm so thankful we got our finances in order five years ago so that we can take this leap of faith today (and because two years ago I was able to do something similar by getting a new job and cutting hours to spend more time with Roo).

Prayers are appreciated :) And if you know anyone who has a dream or wants to take a similar leap but finances are what's holding them back, please direct them here.

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Iowa State Fair 2014

adventurekelsey williamsComment
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We have a love-hate relationship with the Iowa State Fair. We look forward to it every year but sometimes when we're there we ask ourselves why we even like it (it's a ton of people, a lot of walking, and we spend $30 just by parking and walking in).

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The way things shook out this year, we actually went twice (once with Eric's mom and once just us). Last year we went without Rooney and kept saying "Rooney would love this!" Ha. You know what she did when we got there? Threw a fit for about 20 minutes. Fun fun! Why don't we do more fun stuff with the kids?

She was all better after some JR Mini Donuts!

She was all better after some JR Mini Donuts!

The weather was awesome this year. Usually it is SO hot but we had two cool days which definitely made it more enjoyable.

One of my favorite fair foods is the Tater Ribbon Fries with cheese ($8 for a huge plate, big enough to share).

One of my favorite fair foods is the Tater Ribbon Fries with cheese ($8 for a huge plate, big enough to share).

Bauder's is another favorite. I'm sure everything is good but I've only had the peppermint bar ($5)!

Bauder's is another favorite. I'm sure everything is good but I've only had the peppermint bar ($5)!

Corn dogs and root beer - the perfect combination!

Corn dogs and root beer - the perfect combination!

Cheese curds are a MUST!

Cheese curds are a MUST!

This 25-foot tall "American Gothic" replica sculpture was new this year.

This 25-foot tall "American Gothic" replica sculpture was new this year.

"Big Daddy" was the biggest bull this year, weighing in at 3,012 pounds!

"Big Daddy" was the biggest bull this year, weighing in at 3,012 pounds!

In case you missed my summer bucket list recap, Roo and I went down the giant slide together!

In case you missed my summer bucket list recap, Roo and I went down the giant slide together!

I thought this sand castle in the Varied Industries Building was quite impressive!

I thought this sand castle in the Varied Industries Building was quite impressive!

My co-worker submitted a photo of Rooney's friend Caleb and it was chosen to be featured on display!

My co-worker submitted a photo of Rooney's friend Caleb and it was chosen to be featured on display!

Notes to self for next year: Find the elephant ear stand, get over your fear of rejection and submit to the photography exhibit, and get a bucket of cookies instead of a cup!

P.S. What I wore to the fair last year, and also in 2011 (when I was newly pregnant and thought I had a bump)

essential oils we tried in July

natural living, wellness, essential oilskelsey williamsComment
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I'm totally late in getting this up, but we found a new product we love this month, so I still want to share.

NingXia RedThis is a drink (Rooney calls it her "juice") that we take 1-2 oz of each day. I personally don't love the aftertaste, but many people say they don't mind it. Rather than treating symptoms, this is a preventative method of health. It can lower blood pressure, begin the detoxification of every organ, ease seasonal allergies, alleviate depression and increase energy. Amazing!

Deep Relief Roll-On: I got this because Peppermint doesn't work on Eric's headaches as well as it does on mine. It is specially formulated to relieve muscle soreness and tension.

LavaDerm Cooling Mist: This is the product I refer to above that we loved this month. I got this right before our lake vacation, thinking it would be perfect for soothing our skin if we were to get sunburned. We did use it for that (my dad even let me spray it on his red thighs) but what was even better was using it on Rooney's sore bottom. She had a terrible case of diaper rash while we were on vacation! I felt so bad for her. I think it was a result of lots of bowel movements after a week of eating bad foods. (Thanks, Kerry, for telling me about this product!)

Thieves Household Cleaner: I got this to try to get some mold out of Rooney's dress (she was playing with the hose and got all wet I forgot to hang up her dress to dry afterward). Sadly, it didn't work (maybe I did it wrong), but at least it can still be used for general cleaning around the house. Anyone have any laundry tips for removing mold?

LavenderThis is Eric's favorite oil for sleeping. He rubs it on his hands, face and pillow, and Rooney's crib sheets. I love it for skin issues (cuts, burns, diaper rash). Rooney burned her fingers this month :( so I have been putting this on her blisters multiple times a day. It's also great for allergies and can immediately clear up a runny nose for Rooney when we rub it under her nose. This is one oil I always want to have on hand!

If you're interested in learning more about essential oils or have specific questions, let me know in the comments below, or send me an email! They really are as amazing as they seem.

 

*** I am not a doctor, I just love using essential oils. Any information or advice given is meant to help educate and inform, not diagnose, prescribe, treat or cure any disease. The suggestions of the products I use do not replace the advice of your doctor. ***

completing our summer bucket list

life, adventure, funkelsey williams3 Comments

It's still August and our summer bucket list is complete! I got pictures of almost everything and wanted to share them since 1) most of them haven't appeared on the blog yet and 2) to always remember how much fun summer with a 2-year-old is. We have visited a bunch of different parks (I didn't keep track along the way but just did a quick count and came to 15)! My friend Heidi has taken her son to 73 parks this summer so far (she is going for 100), but I'd say 15 is pretty good too.

We built a raised garden bed and learned a heck of a lot about growing food. We followed square foot gardening and planted carrots (flop), beets (total flop), onions, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes (holy tomatoes), cucumbers (huge!), spinach, watermelon (verdict is still out), snap peas, green beans, sweet peppers, green peppers, basil (flop), marigolds, cantaloupe and a couple different types of lettuce. It has been fun (a lot of work too) but we will definitely plant less next year.

We made it to the farmers' market a couple times early in the season and both times enjoyed the amazing gluten-free cinnamon and sugar crepes at the Sweet Treat without Wheat stand.

We went to the Ashby Park splash park and playground with one of Rooney's best friends, Adah. They used to go to daycare together but don't get to see each other as much anymore.

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We have wanted to do this for several years! Eric chose it for his Father's Day activity and the weather was perfect. It's so pretty up there.

I think it's so fun to visit the Tropical Sno stand on a warm day! We enjoyed it while walking around a lake, watching the ducks.

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This is a summer tradition we've been doing for three years! My mom comes down with a couple of her friends and my sister brings her girls to the aquatic center for a couple hours of swimming, and then we eat at Panera afterward. (Speaking of Panera, I highly recommend the Chicken Cobb with Avocado salad!)

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Rooney loved the Heritage Carousel at Union Park - which is only 50 cents to ride! - and there's a cool spaceship playground there, too!

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I guess technically I had a suicide slush instead of ice cream...but it was fun to see what this local favorite is all about! Eric wants to go back for another chocolate malt!

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What a cool local festival! It was our first time checking it out. There's a great small-town parade and then free sweet corn with a line three blocks long! We had a blast with two families from our church who we really look up to.

Can you spot us? We are just above the "d" in "Ride" in the photo above. Rooney immediately wanted to do it again. (Video here.)

They have watermelon Laffy Taffy! And just about anything else you could ever want.

Done and done, can't wait to do it again. You can read more about our awesome week in Okoboji here.

This lasted about as long as any toddler activity (about four minutes). Now that I think about it, I'm not sure she even touched the chalk. She always requests that mommy draw her, then mommy, then daddy.

Just as good as I remember it to be! Find the recipe here.

I promise she had fun, despite the look on her face!


I hope you have been having a great summer! I want to post more but just haven't found the time lately. I was sick, then we were on vacation, then a bout of anxiety knocked me out for a couple weeks. Rooney also goes to bed much later now, so I have less time in the evenings to write and put together images. I have a bunch of half-written drafts backed up that I really do want to finish, so thanks for sticking around!

*photos created using Canva, a great free tool for wanna-be graphic designers!