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The Kids' Log: March 24-30, 2013

Sunday, March 31, 2013


My sister came to town on Wednesday and we've been enjoying the highs and lows that having a house guest brings. I have taken full advantage of having an extra set of eyes and ears and hands on deck by scheduling a flurry of appointments and tasks that would have been impossible to complete while schlepping a baby around.

Isn't it funny how a visit from a relative frees moms to make trips to the eye doctor and car wash instead of the hair salon and spa? It's not all been business though. We took her to Jack London Square yesterday to see the famous author's log cabin and walk by the waterfront. I was hoping to take a tour of FDR's floating White House that is docked there (USS Potomac), but it was closed.

Toddler Log: 3 Years and 32 Weeks Old
Jack London cabin
Jack London's cabin
peeking inside Jack London cabin
Marlie and her auntie getting a closer look
Marlie has been enjoying her auntie's company (and the extra attention). This includes staying up until midnight for the past three nights because she is entirely overstimulated. She came down with a cold yesterday and I spent a couple of hours napping with her after the fever wiped her out. It was nice to snuggle with her for a change. It's been so long! She's usually going a million miles per second and I usually have Desmond attached to my side like a koala bear. I'm glad we got those couple of hours even if it was caused by the sickies. We all eventually succumbed to the same cold. Damon needs to stop bringing home his public transit germs.

Baby Log: 50 Weeks Old
Desmond eats chilli
Desmond eating chilli and cornbread
In two more days, my sweet littlest one will be one! He seems to be racing to leave babyland behind. This week he learned to stack blocks and he's been developing his taste palette. He loves scrambled eggs and meatballs and chilli. Having those upper incisor to tear food has awakened the foodie in him. His first day of school is tomorrow. Wish us luck!

How Do You Finish a Half Marathon? (Wordful Wednesday)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

One foot in front of the other. And that's how I walked 13.1 miles on Sunday and finished the Oakland Run Fest with a personal best time of 3 hours 12 minutes (my goal was 3:30). Booya!

I am so proud of myself. Six months ago I set off to walk the whole marathon, but by January that was not looking feasible. I was so disappointed and a little part of me felt like a failure because doing the 26.2 miles was going to be my consolation prize. As a former runner, I used to look down on walking. I suffered some serious stress fractures a few years ago and was told that I needed to switch to power-walking. It took the running snob in me a long time to take walking seriously. That was until I joined the GO WOW Team and met Coach Stephanie and some powerful ladies who walked faster than many runners. They taught me valuable life lessons about real achievement, setting your own pace, and competing against yourself. I was hooked.

You know the saying that slow and steady wins the race? I saw it with my own eyes. I walked it with my own feet. My team of walkers started at the back of the pack, but we started to pass some of the runners as we hit mile 5 and mile 8. By mile 10 there were gaggles of worn out runners who could barely pick up their feet and we just strode right by them, arms pumping. * I wanted to include a photo of me doing the course, but the prices to download images are CRAZY!*

The entire race was electrifying. The crowds of spectators on the roads were so supportive ringing cow bells, shouting encouragement, and holding signs. My favorites: "kick asphalt," "may the course be with you" "Just Finish! (that's what she said)," and "Hey girl, I'm waiting for you at the finish line-Ryan Gosling."

I got teary eyed as I rounded the last mile and a sense of accomplishment washed over me. No time to sit on my laurels though, the next half marathon is in June!

Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? The State of America's Visual IQ

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Did you know that I am a history/poli-sci geek? Yep. I even won my middle school social studies bowl and minored in history in college. I DVR the American Experience shows on PBS and watch anything showing on The History Channel. I thank some very cool teachers for encouraging my love of a good civics lesson.

Once upon a time, the role of the teacher in the classroom conjured up images and ideas of blackboards, rulers, chalk, and pencils. But now, technology is becoming more and more integrated into modern school systems—not just as an added bonus, but as a necessity to how students learn and how teachers teach. 

While at one point in time, adopting technology into the classroom may have been perceived as stressful and forced for teachers and students alike, as it stands now, students aren’t just excited about using technology, teachers are excited and highly capable of utilizing its presence in the classroom. From smartboards to class computers to e-readers and e-textbooks, each new technology presents new modes of both teaching and learning opportunities. 

Now, every day teachers with tech access are finding new ways to embrace technology and incorporate it into the classroom. As a result, teachers are more efficient than ever, and students are capable of learning faster and more efficiently. In fact, a majority of students say that technology has helped them to achieve their academic goals, while a majority of teachers say they would like to use even more technology in the classroom. 

The following infographic looks into the tech-teaching phenomenon, and why teachers love it so much. I'll share my score with you if you share yours!
What do we Know Infographic
Image Credit: OnlineClasses.org

How to Dress Up for Prom with Style Tips from Mr. Kate! #MacysProm13

Monday, March 25, 2013

I was a fairy godmother in my life before kids. Yes, really! I founded a charity in Atlanta that provided prom dresses to girls with financial hardships. That experience is one of the happiest chapters of my life, so I excitedly agreed to attend Macy's Prom Fashion Show in Concord, California on Saturday so that I could re-live some of the magic.
Mr. Kate and Me
Fashion guru, Mr. Kate hosted the fashion show and offered advice on how to take your formal look to the next level. Mr. Kate is a firecracker and we are now BFFs (even if the friendship is a one-way street).

The most popular style trends for prom dresses this year are: ombre, metallics, color-blocking, embellished bodices, high-low skirts, mini dresses, sequins, and sparkles!
Changing this model's hairstyle to an up-do draws attention to the bodice of this gown.
Mr. Kate showed the audience some great ways to dress up your prom attire and help you stand out from the crowd:
  • Show off an embellished bodice with an up-do
  • If you are wearing a short dress, make it all about the shoes
  • Don't be afraid to mix metallics. You CAN rock chrome shoes with a cooper dress and layers of metallic necklaces or bracelets.
  • Individualize your look with some daring styling: mismatch shoes, one long and one short earring, unique makeup like a painted heart on your cheek
  • Spice up your ensemble with DIY embellishments such as a nail-polish splattered clutch to achieve a one-of-a-kind look
Accessorizing to personalize your prom look can have wonderfully unique results: bejeweled boots, layered metallic necklaces, clutch splattered with polish
Here I am at my senior prom (gotta love the gold lame' ruffled sleeves!) and pictured next to it is the dress I would wear if I was going to prom this year. As you can see I still love metallic formal wear! But what made this dress my pick of the day is the skirt. I would be posing like Angelina all night in this gown!
Disclosure: I am a member of the Everywhere Society and Everywhere provided me with compensation for this post. However, all Thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.

The Kids' Log: March 17-23, 2013

Sunday, March 24, 2013

You may have noticed my absence this week (or maybe not). It was on purpose. I needed a break from blogging, but I'm back and ready to share especially about the prom fashion show I attended yesterday at Macy's! Look out for that post tomorrow, and I'll be visiting all you lovelies to catch up on what's going on in your corner of the world.

If you are reading this around 9:15 am Pacific Time, please send me some cheers as I will be starting the Oakland half marathon. My goal is to walk the 13.1 miles in 3 hrs 30 minutes. Thanks for your support!

Toddler Log: 3 Years and 31 Weeks Old
It was a typical week in the life of my fair lady. We took a trip to the Marin Headlands last Sunday, had a picnic near the old ramparts, and then hiked to the Point Bonita Lighthouse. She has been telling everyone about the "light up house." cute.

Baby Log: 49 Weeks Old
The front teeth are making their slow decent and that makes for a super cranky Desmond. He's been in a bad mood all week. I hope they finish coming out before his birthday!

Conscious Box 3-Month Subscription Giveaway

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

If you ever wished someone would invent a way to sample organic, fair trade, and pure and natural products each month your wish has been granted!

The Conscious Box subscription is a monthly delivery of pure and sustainable products that are handpicked from businesses that care for the planet—just like you! They selectively choose the products, only allowing the purest companies working toward the most ethical goals. Each month, you meet 10-20 of these companies right at your doorstep. (It's like a birthday, every month!)

Concious Box

Conscious Box will introduce you to healthy and honest alternatives for every aspect of your life and for every member of your family. Discover the best natural products, earn points for leaving feedback and reviews, and buy your favorites at incredible discounts! They've got some incredible boxes coming up (including an Earth Day box!).

Buy a subscription for yourself or as a gift today!

Buy It: Get a 50% OFF discount for any Conscious Box subscription. Use code: DISCOVERNATURAL  

Win It: One Marlie and Me reader will get a 3-month Conscious Box subscription – a $59 value! Enter for your chance to win below! UPDATE: The Rafflecopter form had the wrong post link to leave a blog post comment for exta entries. It's been corrected, but if you left a comment prior your entry still counts!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Kids' Log: March 10-16, 2013

Sunday, March 17, 2013

I curse you to Daylight Savings! I have a note from my mommy excusing my tardiness because Daylight Savings is screwing with my internal clock and mind.

Toddler Log: 3 Years and 30 Weeks Old
Daylights Savings affects Marlie differently each time. We just wait and see how she'll handle it. This cycle, she's up until 10 pm and wakes up close to 8 am creating a morning panic that she is oblivious too since southern molasses runs in her veins.

Baby Log: 48 Weeks Old
Desmond is all welly in the belly again. With his appetite back, we've been working on fattening him back up. He was 20.1 lbs before the sickies and now he's 18.8 lbs. We're feeding him ice cream and doughnuts! Just kidding. It's more like buttered noodles, avocados, and Greek yogurt.

The Kids' Log: March 3-9, 2013

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The stomach bug that the outbreak monkey brought home eventually got everyone under our roof. Even Teflon baby couldn't avoid The Contagion. I am so tired from cleaning vomit and diarrhea and not getting enough sleep that I almost forgot to write this update. Better late than never, right?

Desmond got accepted to the same preschool as Marlie to start April 1. That is six months earlier than I had planned, but it is one of the very few affordable, flexible and high-quality daycare options in this area. I do not want to defer which means accelerating my job search. It might sound like I am putting the cart before the horse, but I could not wrap my brain around getting a job and then stressing about daycare or, heaven-forbid, enrolling him at a different place than his sister. I can do this. I just need some confidence and a little luck. Let's not even discuss how I am freaking out about the morning rush, the drop-off/pick-up, handling sick days, school breaks, coordinating vacations, etc...We'll cross that bridge when we arrive there.

Toddler Log: 3 Years and 29 Weeks Old
Patient zero is all better. I sent her back to school on Monday. She has been more defiant than usual this week. Or maybe I have a shorter fuse because I am exhausted from caring for two sick littles.

Baby Log: 47 Weeks Old
Poor Desmond was the last to come down with the stomach virus and he was sick all week. I got scared on Monday when he threw up so much that bile was coming up. Then it worked its way into his gut and I was changing diapers on the hour. He looks like he lost about two pounds which is a lot for a baby. He was able to eat some food last night without it running through him so I think he is almost over it.

Welcome to the Spring 2013 #fashionistaevents Giveaway!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

2013 Fashionista Events button It's the most wonderful time of the year! It's the hap-happiest season of all! ...for FASHIONISTAS! I'm talking about the Fashionista Events of course, the biannual round-up of blogs offering $125 or more in fashion prize packages. It's the Web’s largest and only ALL FASHION, ONLY FASHION blog giveaway EVENT. Starting today, through March 13 you can enter for the chance to win them all, plus some main event prizes too!

The Spring Fashionista Giveaway Event is hosted by The Chief Blonde at Still Blonde After All These Years and Katy of ModlyChic. Kristyn of K Squared Glamour is the co-host.

My Giveaway:
Marlie and Me's Spring 2013 Fashionista Giveaway is about classy style! As part of my $149 prize package, I am sponsoring a Lavender Pearl Necklace and Earring Set ($99) and 24|7 Frenzy is offering a $50 gift code to shop at their site. Plus, 4 runners up will also get $50 24|7 Frenzy gift codes! Scroll to enter on the Rafflecopter.

Lavender Pearl Set247frenzy.com
a Rafflecopter giveaway The Main Event: 
For every giveaway in the Spring Fashionista Event that an entrant enters, they gain one entry toward the Spring Fashionista Events Main Event Prizes. Go here to enter Main Event==> $1200 in Main Event Prizes. The Main Event Prizes total $1200 and include:
  • $600 White Gold and Citrene Stone Necklace from Emma Parker Diamonds (Diamond engagement Rings) 
  • $100 Amazon Gift Card (Worldwide) 
  • $250 Gift Card from Midnight Velvet (clothing, accessories and home decor) 
  • $250 in Shoes from Bobbi-Toad (adorable children’s Shoes)

Disclaimer: Still Blonde after all these YEARS , Modly Chic, K Squared Glamour and Spring Fashionista Events Giveaway or the Spring Fashionista Events Giveaway are not responsible for sponsors/bloggers that do not fulfill their prizes or for any product failure or harm caused thereby.

Wordful Wednesday: 24|7 Frenzy Dress Review #fashionistaevents

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Husband and I had our first date night in forever the Friday after Valentine's Day and it was so much fun that we vowed to make it a regular occurrence. One roadblock, besides securing a babysitter, is my pathetic wardrobe. My closet is filled with functional mom clothes and my former work clothes. I usually cobble together something passable from these pieces, but I would love to have some outfits that are specifically for nights on the town.

That's where 24|7 Frenzy comes in. This online store offers trendy clothing at affordable prices. I won a gift code to shop at 24|7 Frenzy and was so happy with the dress I picked that I asked them to sponsor a prize for the Spring 2013 Fashionista Event. They said yes and also had me review another item! I picked this printed olive dress with belt. This frock rocks! I dare say I look better than the model. I can totally see myself wearing this to a nice dinner and dancing in the very near future.

printed olive dress with beltmodeling belted dress

What I like most about 24|7 Frenzy is that I can shop for an entire outfit and dress it up from hat to leggings on one site.

Visit 247frenzy.com and check out the winter fashion sale and clearance. They are making room for the spring collection and you can score big savings on coats (as low as $14.99) and other clothing!

Buy It: The Printed Olive Dress with Belt is on sale now for $49.99! 24|7 Frenzy offers flat rate shipping of $6.99 and FREE shipping on orders of $100 or more.

Win It: Come back March 7-13 to enter to win one of five (5!) $50 gift codes to 24|7 Frenzy right here at Marlie and Me during the Spring 2013 Fashionista Event. Hint: leave a comment on this post relevant to my review to earn 5 EXTRA ENTRIES when the giveaway starts! In the meantime, peep at some of the Fashionista prizes in the LOOKBOOK plus get in the giveaway for Rose Quartz and Pink Sapphire 16” necklace from Fine Jewelry by Carol Brodie.


eShakti Spring Collection Dress Review + Coupon Code

Monday, March 4, 2013

For me there is no better way to mark the arrival of spring than with a new Easter dress. Don't I look like a bloom on a vine in this colorblock floral applique frock in orange and cream from eShakti?!

The original dress is sleeveless and knee-length, but thanks to eShakti's customization option I was able to add sleeves and shorten the hem above the knee. These small changes made all the difference. I really liked the dress before, but now I adore it! eShakit's offers custom sizing and styling for women size 0-36W and the first time is free!

My love for eShakti is no secret. It is the first place I look when I'm shopping for a special occasion dress and most times I find the one! You will too, but you have to visit eShakti and while you are there take a look at their new exclusive Bridesmaids line.

Shop: The colorblock floral applique frock comes in three colors and limitless styling and sizing. Retails for $79.95 at eShakti.com. Use discount coupon code MRLENDME, exclusively created for my readers to get 20% OFF when you shop at eShakti - valid thru 03/20/13. (the code is now working. apologies if you tried to use it previously and received an error)

Follow Don't forget to connect with eShakti on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to stay in the loop.

 photo img_reviewgiveawaydisclosure_zps6aa41ede.jpg

The Kids' Log: Feb. 24-March 2, 2013

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Sickness descended upon our house this week like some kind of vengeful Biblical plague. Damon came down with the flu or a severe cold. He only took Monday off and dragged his butt to work the rest of the week. Me? I caught a milder version of what he brought home. I didn't have a fever though. I did have aches and chills so I thought it was flu, but that only lasted a day. We both have lots of chest congestion and a sore throat and a bad cough. Marlie picked up a stomach bug at school and was blowing chunks for three days straight. She'd seem fine and and eat but would throw up as soon as she drank any water. I did my best to avoid her germs by wearing plastic bags to clean up, washing my hands obsessively, and disinfecting every surface in the house but there really is no germ preventative for a preschooler who coughs in your face. So I also developed a pinch of her stomach flu. It wasn't full-blown, just enough to knock me on my butt on Friday with fever and stomach cramps that had me begging for mercy. The worst part of it all was the righteous weather this week that we couldn't enjoy because we were stuck inside. By they way, someone needs to write a caregiver manual on how to care for a sick child and a well child when you are sick too.

Teflon baby was the only only who escaped the sick fairy (three cheers for breast milk antibodies!)

Toddler Log: 3 Years and 28 Weeks Old
I may have mentioned once or twice that Marlie is not a typical sick child meaning that she doesn't curl up in bed and convalesce. She bounces around like a bunny on uppers and that is what she did for the past four days. She turned the house upside down between whining about wanting water (which acted like syrup of ipecac) and asking when she was going back to school. Saturday rolled around and she didn't vomit all day so we let her ride her bike around the block. She looked so happy being outside again.

Baby Log: 46 Weeks Old
I can't believe this boy is going to be 1 years old in a month! He suddenly looks less like a baby and more like a little person to me. His new thing is to walk around in a circle, get dizzy and fall to the ground laughing. It must be a boy thing. He is certainly a boy's boy, all rough and tumble and mischevious. He favors the basketball and trucks at playtime. Lucky for us we have plenty because his sister likes them too. His new favorite snack is sliced and quartered bananas. He acts like a big man when he's eating them and pushes my hand away if I try to help him pick one up. Yesterday I noticed an upper incisor breaking through. Finally!

2013 Spring #fashionistaevents Sneak Peek + $300 Rarities Necklace Giveaway

Friday, March 1, 2013

I have three words for you: Fashionista Events LookBook. The Spring Fashionista Giveaway is back and as fabulous as ever. Now is a good time to put on your reading glasses so you can peep all the information! If you can’t see the Lookbook below, GO HERE!
What is the Spring Fashionista Giveaway? 
It is the Web’s largest and only ALL FASHION, ONLY FASHION blog giveaway EVENT. Taking place March 7- 13, every giveaway will be valued at $125 – or more! Most of the bloggers have put together prize packs worth several hundred dollars!With more than 115+ bloggers participating in the Spring Fashionista Giveaway Event there will be more than $26,000+ worth of prizes to win!

The Spring Fashionista LookBook is now available and just skimming the pages will make you wish the March 7-13 event were already here! At the very least, it will have you re-arranging your calendar so you can free up those days in order to enter as many of the 110+ giveaways as possible.

2013 Fashionista Events button

What is the LookBook? 
To get you even more excited, we’ve put together a LookBook to offer a sneak peak at some of the giveaways that will be offered during the event. Flip through the pages and find the numerous gift cards that will give you a well-deserved shopping spree. Or maybe jewelry is more your style. No problem. There are hundreds of dollars worth of baubles to adorn your ears, wrists and throat. Plus, you could win a new pair of jeans, a gorgeous spring dress, or even a designer purse.

Feast your eyes on the possibilities. Check out the participating blogs, and go ahead, bookmark them now!
Carol Brodie Rarities pink necklace

And if all of this wasn’t enough… The Fashionista EVENTS LookBook is offering you the chance to win a this stunning Rose Quartz and Pink Sapphire 16” necklace from Fine Jewelry by Carol Brodie. This pretty bauble retails at $299!!

Spring Fashionista Events Sponsors
The Spring Fashionista Giveaway Event is the amazing brainchild of The Chief Blonde at Still Blonde After All These Years Her co-hosts for the event are Katy Rose of ModlyChic and Kristyn of the K Squared Glamour Mark your calendars for March 7-13. It’s going to be Incredible! Also, visit our Main Event Sponsors: Midnight Velvet, Emma Parker Diamonds, and Bobbi-Toad (children’s Shoes) who are providing $1200 in Prizes.

Marlie and Me's Spring 2013 Fashionista Giveaway is about classy style! As part of my $149 prize package, I am sponsoring a Lavender Pearl Necklace and Earring Set ($99) and 24|7 Frenzy is offering a $50 gift code to shop at their site. Plus, 4 runners up will also get $50 24|7 Frenzy gift codes!
Lavender Pearl Set247frenzy.com

See all the prizes and more in the LOOKBOOK above! Psst: Make sure to follow our PINTEREST board with Monroe and Main for last minute Spring Fashionista Events giveaway additions.

The Prize 
One Winner will take home the Rarities: Fine Jewelry with Carol Brodie Rose Quartz and Pink Sapphire Necklace ($300)
 a Rafflecopter giveaway
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