Family Fun...

This past weekend we packed in a ton of fun with the family. Jody and Sonya surprised everyone at Christmas with the news that they were heading to Texas in January for Sonya's birthday. If I were to gage the excitement factor with this news... the kids win hands down.

COUSIN OWEN COUSIN OWEN - he's basically a celebrity. 

So the weekend finally arrived, we busted the kids out of school early on Friday and headed to Waco to spend the night at Gigi and Pops. Owen is almost as tall as me, but I still have at least an inch on him. For now. 

On Saturday, the CS sibling crew drove to Ft. Worth to meet Jody and Sonya and some of their California friends for a night on the town. Confession: as Texan as I am, I have never been out to the stockyards. Y'all... WHAT HAS TAKEN ME SO LONG??!?

Besides just being the cutest place ever, we had the BEST time and I wasn't even drinking!!
(See kids, you don't have to drink to have fun!)


We don't get to be together very often, so it was so sweet to hang with these two play some pool, laugh and pretend that we are still young enough to hang out until past 1am. Which is exactly what we did - and while I'm clearly the youngest and best looking of the group... Jody totally wins at playing pool. (Although I did have an awesome last game). 

I kind of hit the jackpot with brothers.

Ryan and I made the drive back to CS SUPER early on Sunday morning because I had a work commitment so we decided to let the kids stay an extra day in Waco. I drove back early on Monday morning and we spent the day exploring the Waco Mammoth National Monument.

If you have a day and want a quick, fun, and educational trip with kiddos - this is your stop. 

In the late 70s two men discovered a HERD of mammoth bones. HERD y'all. And since then they've been working to preserve this site. Many of the bones of the TWENTY-FOUR mammoths have been donated to Baylor and the local children's museum but they kept some on site and in 2015 President Obama named this a National Monument.


This little girl was basically the cutest asking so many questions - that's usually Radley's role but she was on fire and so eager to learn more. 

They've created a structure around the actual dig site which was especially cool. 

This is a mural to scale of a real mammoth - approximately 14 feet to their shoulders. INSANE! And y'all - these suckers were walking around just 65,000 years ago. I mean that's practically yesterday in paleo years! 

We couldn't leave without revisiting the dig site where Radley discovered the shoulder bone of a mammoth. He was so pumped and has decided on a career change from marine biologist to marine paleontologist.  

Can't wait until our next visit! We love y'all!





Here we go - I have been having the best time playing dress up with these Stella and Dot pieces. You should join the fun at my "party" and snag some things for yourself! This Jacqueline tassel necklace was perfect for this floral blazer and leopard belt. A simple touch but still such a fun statement!

It's rare that I have Landry to myself after school, but we dropped Emersyn off at dance on Tuesday and I ran home to make dinner. Radley stayed to play with his friend Cade so it was just me and Landry and she was so excited that she got to check the mail, all by herself.

Dinner that night consisted of garlic parmesan tortellini served straight from the bowl with three forks in the van, because #survival. We were going to have a picnic but it was too windy so they ate in the car, no complaints and that is always a win!

I'm approaching the end of Whole30 so my dinner looked a little different. Super easy if you want to try:

Saute onion and mushroom in fat of choice (butter/ghee/EVOO)
Add 1/4 cup of tomato sauce (I used pomi)
Squeeze of half of lemon
Add zoodles and cook until tender
Top with capers


On Wednesday, I went bold with white jeans in winter. And y'all - I kind of loved it! The Sutton necklace was the perfect addition and you're in luck because I think the silver version of this is still on sale! ps. You can wear this FIVE WAYS!

We got to take Mills with us to school on Wednesday and that always makes for a happy start to the day!

You know what else makes me happy? My students - I ran into Chris and Vincent and just about died from laughing. One was dressed for success and the other was ready to go tackle a career fair. 

By Thursday I was in my groove with Stella and Dot - the York necklace may be my favorite. 

If you have trouble talking to strangers then go ahead and snag this. So many people complimented me on the colors and style and I couldn't agree more. I like that there is a lot going on but that it also goes together flawlessly. Emersyn thinks it looks like a turkey.

We ended the week heading to Waco for a super special visit...and not just from Harry Potter... more on that later!


Friday Favorites: Short and sweet

This week was long y'all. Nothing awful or annoying happened, but I feel like it took forever to get to Friday. But we are here and I'm linking up with AndreaErika, and Narci to chat about a few of my favorite things from this week... 

I always love a good deal - I mean who doesn't? My mom gave me a gift card to HobLob and I found myself running errands ALONE on Saturday morning (I mean, can I get an AMEN for that?!?) and stumbled across this print for $20! One of my favorite quotes! I put it on the mantle to serve as a reminder to me but I have loved that I hear Emersyn reading it every.single.day. Such wise words and such a simple thing. Do good.

 One of my friends just became a stylist with Stella and Dot and she let me borrow some pieces for a week or two. Here is what I picked out... that York necklace is my favorite with the Sutton being the runner-up. You can shop these pieces and more at my online party for the next three weeks. And bonus - ELEVEN of their top sellers (including the Sutton) is currently on SALE! Saving money is my favorite!

Random dates with the kiddos are always a favorite. They had dentist appointments on Thursday so not only did we get to sleep in a teensy bit longer, but we hit up Chick Fil A before.. me and this big kid chatted it up while his sisters worked off some energy on the playground. 
(If you aren't following along on Snapchat @Katygking then you missed a good bit of entertainment from them. They are nuts - but darling!) 

Emersyn is definitely one of Landry's favorites - she wouldn't leave her side during the teeth cleaning and I couldn't figure out who was being more patient. The hygienist or Emersyn... Landry was practically laying on her!

Meanwhile...Rad wasn't so into the pictures anymore.

And for the first time, maybe ever, I finally see how people think they look so much alike. When I was looking on my phone I wondered why I took two pics of Emmy. And then I looked again... can you tell the difference?

I needed some spirit lifting this week and this article from Myles Garrett made me smile. He is leaving Aggieland for the NFL and man, WE ARE GOING TO MISS HIM! Read this and you'll see why! Basically, any man that appreciates tacos as much as him is a keeper!

Happy Friday!


Making Eggs...

The kids say all sorts of random things that I don't always understand. Sometimes I dig deeper and sometimes I'm "that mom" that just agrees with whatever random factoid they spout.

Last week, I dug deeper. I was intrigued when Emersyn confidently exclaimed, "Mom - I know how to scramble eggs."

Me: Really? That's awesome - how?
Emmy: Well, you get out the little pan and put stuff in it [butter/spray/whole30 compliant stuff] and then grab two eggs from the refridg-a-tate-or, then crack them and walk away for 3 seconds to turn on the coffee. Then you get a fork and mix them up. Then you walk away and pour cereal. And then you mix them more and sometimes add stuff [sausage/veggies/seasoning] and then you hold the pan and then you put them in a bowl.
Me: Wow. You really do know how to make eggs! That's awesome!

She was so proud y'all. She loves that she can "make eggs" and while I am 100% sure she can do all the things that she said, this, for me, was about so much more than making eggs.

What she was saying to me is that she is watching. Not only is she watching, she is remembering what I do; especially when I repeat what I do over and over again.

Every time I hold open a door for a stranger... she is watching.
Every time I say thank you... she is watching.
Every time I help a friend... she is watching.
Every time I take notes in church... she is watching.
Every time I put on make up... she is watching.
Every time I let the person waiting to pull out on a crowded street into traffic... she is watching.
Every time I compliment Landry or Radley for listening... she is watching.
Every time I thank Ryan for the little things he does... she is watching.

So if she is watching all of that, then surely...

Every time I roll my eyes at my darling husband... she is watching.
Every time I don't make time to read to her... she is watching.
Every time I perhaps say something unkind to another person driving a car... she is watching.
Every time I yell... she is watching.
Every time I make an excuse or quit... she is watching.

She is watching. They are watching. They see us. They hear us. More than that, they learn from us. Not from any one big thing that we do, but from every tiny little insignificant repeated action that we take.

They are watching.

I don't think it's a coincidence that the same song keeps popping up on my drive to work, to pick up kids, or randomly at work on Pandora. The day she told me how to cook eggs, the next song that I heard from "Alexa" was this same song...

The chorus resonates with me.

I'd love like not I'm scared
Give when it's not fair
Live life for another
Take time for a brother
Fight for the weak ones
Speak out for freedom
Find faith in the battle
Stand tall but above it all
Fix my eyes on you

I hope that she watches me do all of those things. That she sees me when I pay for a stranger's coffee. When I do something hard and unfair. When I am a voice for the ones that can't speak. That my faith guides me through the next battle. And I hope she understands that standing tall and above it all includes doing the work that He intends us to do. To love others. To rise above the dark and be the light.

Because we are making so much more than eggs. We are shaping the future of our community, our state, our nation while they are watching. The question, then, is what are we letting them see?


Style Me Stella...

I'm pretty sure that we have established that I am not a fashion blogger. For several reasons that include...

1. My lack of selfie skills
2. My lack of flat-lay skills (I don't even know how to spell that word)
3. My lack of energy (Y'all... the planning that goes into posts is exhausting!)

Fashionistas. Fashion Bloggers. Fashion Gurus. Fashions Queens.

I salute you!

All of that to say, I was kind of excited when my friend Jennifer approached me about her new Stella and Dot adventure. I should probably add "hopeless with accessories" to the list above if I'm being honest and not because I don't enjoy/appreciate a good statement necklace... more because I wear the same three all the time!

Jennifer loves an accessory and she also loves telling people what to do helping people find their best look so this new venture is perfect for her. She let me pick out some pieces from what she has from the new line and y'all... I am pumped!

Quick confession: I don't have my ears pierced. Well, I had them pierced but that quit working out my senior year in college. I also have freakishly small wrists so bracelets aren't my favorite. So basically I wear necklaces. But don't let that stop you from looking at the line, because there are some amazing items!

Here's what I selected:

Here's some plans for styling them...

(remember what I said about a flat lay)

(and don't judge because I took these on my phone with no natural light in the room)

(Carla Tassel and Chevron Bracelet)

(Sutton Necklace and Chevron Bracelet)

(Jacqueline Lariat)
ps. I think this necklace would be AWESOME worn backwards if you had a backless dress

(Sutton Necklace - extended and Chevron Bracelet)

I'm excited to get some wear out them the next couple of weeks and try different styles. Most of these necklaces can be worn at least two ways so if you think about that,  your price/piece goes down. Browse Stella and Dot's page to get an idea of what you may want and then you can join our "party" beginning THURSDAY at 7pm! 

As always, the more the merrier! They have a big sale coming up so now is a perfect time to order! The party will be open for three weeks - so you have plenty of time to shop!

Which look do you like best? I'm dying to get the York Necklace so I can try out a few different looks!


Steal and Splurge...

Goodness, is everyone else as excited as I am about this year's Show and Tell topics? I love them - thanks Andrea, for giving us lots to gab about!

I am especially excited to get some tips from so many people today! You better believe I have my pen and paper out and ready to write down how I can find the best deals on things so that we can save now to splurge later! I don't have too much to share, but I do think I have mastered one teensy area in our life that allows us to save.


This may not be the most amazing tip, but I have mastered the art of ordering when we eat out. I wasn't always the best, but I finally got tired of throwing food away or coming home with leftovers we'd never eat - or worse, leftovers that I would eat when I shouldn't. I was fed up. (pun intended)

As much as I'd love to say that we will just quit eating out, that choice isn't realistic for us. We can cut down eating out and we have, but we find ourselves out a lot, so, I made some changes and we got some major change in return! You probably know this and do lots of this yourself, but just in case, here are my top hacks for eating out:

1. Everyone drinks water - the exception is if a meal includes a drink; otherwise, it's H20. This includes alcohol for us big kids... Ryan is usually the one that breaks this rule. ;)

2. Quit ordering kids meals - the cheaper price is deceiving and hardly ever saved us money. Instead, the girls share a regular meal.

3. We can always order more - This is our motto. I typically order Radley something separate but not huge because the girls won't finish everything and Radley generally likes to eat whatever I am eating. If we have all cleared our plates and someone is starving, then we can always order more.

Here is a typical order at Chick Fil A:

Girls share a 12 piece nugget, upsized to a large but I request that the drink be split in three kids' cups and y'all - they do this 99% of the time. Radley gets just a sandwich and this was a bizarre day where I ordered a salad (I'm doing Whole30 so I would typically order a sandwich, too). We eat for $12-$15 which I think is pretty darn cheap for four people! The drink splitting is a game changer.

Other ways we save money...

1. Play it again sports - if we only need something for a season then why not spend $3 on shoes? Radley actually fell hard for a pair of Nike shoes that he wore to school for $2 and LOVED them.

2. Hand-me downs - yes, I will take your clothes! Also, my kids don't really grow...

3. Half-priced books - Y'all. Why spend $20 on a book that we can find for $2 at Half-Priced Books? I only wish we would have done this sooner! Besides saving money, we are saving the environment! Reuse and recycle that stuff!!!

4. We say no - Isn't that crazy?!?! But really, we have enough "SWDN" as Cindy and I call it. (That stands for 'stuff we don't need'.) (We use a different word for stuff.)

5. Laundry detergent - Our dryer broke a couple of years ago and while we weren't looking for a new set, we lucked into an awesome front load washer and dryer for cheap! BUT the washing machine never smelled clean. We kept the door open, we washed it, we tried all the tricks... and then one of m friends posted about making her own detergent helped her washing machine stench disappear. So I tried my hand at homemade laundry detergent and y'all - IT IS AWESOME! You can read my review here. We have made it twice since May 2015 - that's $60 in almost two years...INCREDIBLE!


We spend more money on our own clothes or things that we will get more use from. We aren't complete food snobs, but we aren't afraid to spend more at the grocery store or on date nights. But as far as our favorite thing to splurge on - experiences. We want to do things and see things with the kiddos, so we travel as much as we can. We aren't super fancy and we look for deals and make smart choices, but we have taken them on awesome vacations and will continue to do so!

Some of our favorites include Disneyland...

Gulf Shores... 

 Colorado with the besties...

And our amazing trip to New York last January...

Our goal is to hit all 50 by the time Landry is 21... and I think we've hit 12 so far! 

There you go... how we save and where we splurge! Can't wait to read your tips and tricks today. And if you missed on linking up, here's a list of what's to come!

Happy Tuesday!



Raise your hand if you're surprised I am posting this two weeks after my last week's view of our life through my phone. Oh, not surprised? I am not shocked that you are not shocked. 

We have an activity Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings so I'm always prepped with snacks. I ask the kiddos in the morning what they want to eat and Emersyn caught me off guard and asked for Cheerios then she went and grabbed one of our old snack bowls from when they were eating rice cereal and I saw an 18 month old toddler for a split second. 

Every now and then they both sneak in my room - be still my heart with the sweetest little girls in the softest big bed. 

This kid turned into a giant overnight. He is the kindest, sweetest, smartest, guy I know and I am so very glad that he's mine. He had a big UIL event a couple of weeks ago and made a goal to just place. 

We headed up to the awards ceremony and although he didn't get the results he worked so hard for, he left with a pretty valuable new lesson

My mom dropped off some of my old dance costumes and to say that these two were excited is an understatement. Emersyn couldn't get over that I "showed my belly" in PUBLIC when I was a little girl. Needless to say, she wears this all the time. 

Anyone else do this? I actually had this polish on for a month before it started chipping, but once it happens there is really no point. Five minutes later, these were polish free. 

Don't you just love church marquees? I saw this one at a stop light last week and loved it. 

"What steps are you taking right now to develop the kind of character that will outlive you?"

Think about that... what are we doing now, tomorrow, next week, next year... to write our story that will be told for years after we are gone? What are we teaching our children? How do we interact with strangers? Are we setting a Christ-like example for others? 

One of the steps I am taking is to crusade on behalf of all women that do believe that leggings are, in fact, pants. They are y'all. They have legs and a waist... pants. 

When we were snapping this pic for our annual day bowling, I couldn't help but think that this is our circus and these are our monkeys. ;)

If you missed my post about Fed+Fit's Mongolian Beef, please go check it out.


Some days I just sit and ask myself what am I doing? Am I a good mom - some days, am I even a an OKAY mom? And some days I'm going through homework folders and discover that I may be doing okay afterall. 

Translation: My mom is awesome. She is an Aggie. She has two brothers. She loves her family and her mom and dad. 

I love you, too, Emersyn.

That part of homework is fun - most of the other stuff is completely overrated. Jenn and I send random texts to confirm our hatred for this weekly time sucker. Her response is brilliant. 

And if that isn't enough to love her, she sent me a RANDOM care package FILLED with Trader Joe's goodies JUST BECAUSE. I hit the jackpot with her as a soul sister/blog bestie/internet friend turned sister wife. 

Speaking of jackpots - run to Target y'all. These darling FOOD FREE Valentine's are in the dollar spot right now. Huge selection so your chances of picking the same aren't too high, but you know what, I don't even care if we get duplicates because they are so cute. 

Rad went with dinosaurs and the girls picked erasers. (And yes, we are already done - that never happens. I'm usually scrambling at the end...this is all because of Target!!)

HobLob also got some major bonus points this week. This is one of my favorite quotes and this print was on sale for $20 - couldn't pass it up. I put it on our mantle so we see it each and every day as a great reminder for us be good and believe in the good.

And that's us in an instant!