Black Friday Mayhem

A 5:00 am wake up call the day after Thanksgiving, usually means one thing: Black Friday mayhem, I mean shopping. In our family, however, it means an early hockey game at rink 50 minutes away. I always love getting up and getting to my destination before the sun rises. It saves me the trouble of putting on my sunglasses. But seriously, who the freak schedules bantams, I mean U14, for early morning games? Pretty sure we paid our dues here, but I digress.

For those of you out shopping in the mayhem, save us some coffee because this mama is gonna need an extra cup! We’ll be enjoying our Black Friday mayhem at the rink. Shoppers may the odds be in your favor!

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Washed My Sneakers

Yep, I washed my sneakers in the wash machine. Honestly, I didn’t even know it was a possibility until earlier this week when Goalielocks washed his NMDs. As you may recall, Goalielocks and his brand new Adidas’ has a run in with a retention pond in Chicago. He washed his shoes Monday and they look and smell great. Well at least they smelled good Monday night.

I realized this morning that I might be about thirty eight years late to the party based on the look of incredulity my co-worker Gabe me. However, I have an excuse or two. Honestly, I haven’t worn sneakers as my everyday shoe since elementary. I’m a high heels kind of girl and will be again once my tendon has healed. Also when your heels get dirty, you can’t stick them in the wash. You either replace them or clean them with a cloth. One can see how I’d be late to the party here.

Secondly, I have three boys. We’ve gone through a lot of sneakers in our days. So many that it’s amazing I’ve never washed them before. However, boys grow fast, so you’re replacing them often. More importantly, my boys are hard on their shoes. Much like my boys’ socks, their sneakers, especially when they were younger, were borderline disposable. By the time their condition would necessitate a wash, the boys had already ripped or otherwise destroyed them.

So how do you wash your shoe without destroying it? Simple.

1) Add shoes to wash machine after taking your laces out

2) Add laces in a laundry bag (I left my laces in the shoes and had no issues, but laces in the shoe can cause issues during the wash cycle.)

3) Add additional laundry to act as a buffer for the shoes.

4) Add detergent. (I also added Borax to aid the cleaning process. If you shoes are white, you can try bleach.)

5) Set the water temp to cold

6) Launder the shoes using the delicate cycle

7) Set out to dry (I didn’t put mine in the dryer, nor should you.)

8) Realize you probably should have done this sooner after drying your shoes.

I ran my sneakers through the delicate cycle twice. The rainy season and scooter life were tough on the shoes. They’re actually quite muddy from everyday where. I’m quite pleased with the results, but I would have gotten even better results if I hadn’t waited months to wash them.

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Black Friday

Black Friday

Unlike many Americans, we spent our Black Friday morning at the hockey rink at not the mall.  Quite frankly, I can’t stand the malls down here in season let alone on Black Friday.   Unquestionably, the normal rudeness and ineptitude ramps up a couple of notches when season kicks in.  If there is anywhere someone would get shot over a cheap TV, it would be here.  Needless to say, I’ll be avoiding Best Buy and the mall for the next month.

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I think that’s probably why Cyber Monday is more my thing.  No crazy people or horrible drivers to contend with as I surf the web, what could be better?  Nonetheless, the younger two and I did venture out to Dick’s and PetSmart.  Neither store was incredibly packed and both were well staff to handle all the shoppers. My boys left the stores empty handed much to their chagrin.  To stores was all I could handle, however, so it’s back to shopping online.

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We started out morning at the rink.  If you ask me, a 9:45 am game is way too early for bantams.  I thought the scheduling Gods would be smiling on us by bantam and we’d get later games.  Honestly, I prefer the later games as I am not a morning person.  This morning, Goalielocks was excited and relieved to have been dropped off at the right rink at the right time.

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Their first game was against the Florida Bulldogs, who Goalielocks played for 2 seasons ago.  Our squad went up handily in the first period notching 3 goals and only allowing one sort of shot on their net.   The rest of the game was much more even although we continued to out shoot them 2-1.   Moreover, our goalie came up with some clutch saves down the stretch.  As the final buzzer rang, the boys rushed the Goalie to celebrate their 4-1 victory.  We’ll be heading back to the rink shortly for their second game of the day against the Everblades, which should be a much tighter contest.

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After eating my weight in Thanksgiving goodies yesterday,  I was committed to getting in a run.  Consequently, the Piggie and I headed out for a 3.25 mile run around the neighborhood.  As with my last run, it was a bit laborious and a tough go of it.  Certainly, today’s run wasn’t fast! Hopefully, these runs will start to get a little bit easier and a little faster.

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Today’s song is “Walk on Water” by Thirty Seconds to Mars.  I love this song! Who remembers Jared Leto from MY So Called Life?  Leto still acts, but has also found success with his band Thirty Second to Mars. 

My iPhone X

My iPhone X

The iPhone X is finally here!  Ok, I acquiesce it was here last Friday the 3rd.  Importantly, My iPhone X arrived today.  While my Iphone 6 has served me well lasting well over 3.5 years, it is nearly ancient in phone terms and starting to show its age.  As excited as I have been about my new phone, my boys have been even more excited.  They were both dancing with glee when they saw it had arrived today.

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Consequently, the I received a call from the Mayor as I was drove up the turnpike.  The Mayor isn’t one to wait around for answers, so I was not surprised at all by this.  He and Goalielocks were fighting over who was going to get to open my phone.  The Mayor was busy pleading his case as Goalielocks was shouting he called it in the background.  Sensing his brother’s annoyance level rising, the Mayor proceeded to thank me for letting him open it.  Naturally, this made Goalielocks go ballistic.  Meanwhile, I’m telling the Mayor to stop saying these things that are clearly untrue.  I was finally able to get a word in edgewise and disappoint them both with the news that neither would open it.   Instead I would wait for them both to leave for hockey practice before I would open it myself.

After seeing pictures of shattered phones, I opened my new phone gingerly. I started setting it up before my Barre class.  Honestly, I’m proud of myself for putting down the Iphone X and heading to Xtend Barre.  It was seriously tempting to stay home to setup and play around with the phone.  Nevertheless, I exercised some discipline and headed to the Barre.  As usual, Adam kicked our butts in new and inventive ways.  I’m sure my legs, abs and arms will be screaming tomorrow.

I activated the phone and finished the setup operations between sauteing the chicken and cooking rice.  The first thing the boys wanted to see once they boys got home from practice was my new phone.  As soon as they got in the door, they rushed over to see the new phone.  Namely, they wanted to see what it looks like and how it works compared to their phones.  I played around with some of the camera features, which pepper this blog.  I cannot wait to try out the camera tomorrow.  There are features that I still haven’t tried like the emoji maker, but I’ll have plenty for that.   It will take me awhile to get accustomed to the X as it is  quite different from the 6.  Nonetheless, I’m quite excited for my new toy.

Tonight’s song – love it –  is an awesome flashback to the 90’s with  Harvey Danger’s “Flagpole Sitta.”  I heard this song on the radio today as I drove and it brought me back to the 90s.

It’s That Time Again

I can’t believe it’s that time again. Time to get new clothes, new backpacks and copious amounts of school supplies. The only people in more shock, devastation really, at how fast the summer went is my boys.

This year we’re only shopping for two as Jake. Jake starts college next month, so his shopping will be a bit different.

The Trouble With Travel

The trouble with travel is hockey is trying to maintain healthy eating habits when the majority of your weeknights are spent at the rink and your weekends are spent driving across the state to other rinks.  Hockey season doesn’t have to be a diet killer if you’re well prepared.  Just like you would take the time to prep our meals for the work week, you have to take the time to prep your snacks  and meals for the road.

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After hundreds of miles on the road, the ease and quickness of fast food is alluring.  If, however, you’ve planned ahead and prepped your snacks and meals for the road, it is easy to drive by or skip out on the fast food.  Removing the temptation and not wanting to waste food will go a long way to keeping you on the diet wagon.

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Here are some great ideas for healthy snacks and easy meals for the road.

  • Almonds
  • Peanuts
  • Stringed Cheese
  • Apples or apple slices
  • Peanut butter or almond butter
  • Oranges – clementine’s are perfect for road trips as they are very easy to peel
  • Berries
  • Grapes
  • Popcorn
  • Baby carrots
  • Protein Shakes
  • Protein bars
  • Granola bars
  • Yogurt
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Celery sticks

If you carpool with other families, be sure your snacks align with any food allergies that may be present in your carpool group.

These snacks are easy, convenient, healthy and relatively inexpensive especially when compared to the cost of eating at a restaurant every trip.  For tips on how to indulge in an adult beverage or two without calling your waistline, see my tasty, but light on calories recommendations here.

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Savings Alert!

This morning I finally had a chance to sit down and put together some on the weekend’s best sales.  The goal is to make this post weekly. Here are a few of my favorites:

Kohls:

  • Take $10 off of $25 with code: Take10
  • Save 15% off of $100 with code: EBATES15
  • 6% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates
  • Get $5 Kohl’s cash for every $25 spent

Macys:

  • Get $5 Macy’s money for every $25 spent
  • Save 20% (15% on some departments) with code: SUNNY
  • 6% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates

Petco:

  • 8% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates online and in store with linked card.
  • Save up to 50% site wide

BCBG:

  • Take extra 50% off of all factory items
  • Take 40% off of all purchases
  • 12% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates.

Lancome:

  • 20% off during Friends and family sale with code: friends
  • 4% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates online.

Finish Line:

  • $15 off of any order of $150+ with code: 15SEASONSALE150
  • Running shoes up to 50% off
  • 6% cash back on all purchases made through Ebates online.

 

An Introduction

It may seem strange to many that I’m a hockey mom living in sunny S. Florida, but life has a way of throwing curve balls our way.   In 2005, we headed south from Minnesota to explore what South Florida had to offer.  Our kids were still quite young at the time, Jacob was going into first grade and Colin was only 18 months.  It was truly the perfect time for us to relocate without much interruption to their lives.   While Jacob had played hockey at the Super Rink in Blaine the winter before we headed south, he decided not to continue playing in Florida.

Several years and a Zachary later,  you can imagine our surprise that despite living in Florida for five years (and Zachary being born in Florida), our boys (especially Colin and Zachary) were still drawn to hockey.  We tried numerous other sports (karate, soccer, etc.) to no avail.  I guess you can take the boys out of Minnesota, but you can’t take the Minnesota out of the boys. Consequently,  since 2010 we’ve been living the hockey lifestyle in sunny South Florida.  With three boys playing at three different age levels on three different travel teams, our life has been busy.  I would be lying if I told you that laundry, non-hockey friendships and household chores don’t fall by the wayside during hockey season.

This blog is about my attempt (any my family’s) to find balance between motherhood, hockey, fitness, survival and career.   In writing this, I hope to both amuse and perhaps help others striving to find this balance.  For others it may confirm what they already knew; hockey moms are crazy.

This blog is also about saving money!  Managing a household with three hockey players, two of which are now teenagers, encompasses a lot of food and a lot of expenses.  I’ll  be sharing deals, flash sales and my best finds.    You can also expect reviews of our favorite products and new products we’re trying.

I hope you enjoy reading the blog and that the window into our crazy world provides you with both entertainment and good information.