Friday, September 30, 2011

Onion Rings & Crayons

Friday night. Exciting stuff. With Andy recording music ALL DAY LONG, the girls and I head to my mother's to hang out. She's exhausted, but I'm really looking forward to the frozen Lean Cuisine I accidentally left at her house. Like I said, exciting stuff. I don't know how it happened. I'm still not quite sure what sparked this spontaneous girl's night out, but I'm thankful for it... whatever it was. I remember heading to the kitchen to heat up my aforementioned dinner... next thing I know, we're loading up the girls on this nasty, brisk, rainy evening and heading to Kenova, West Virginia. That's right... I said Kenova, West by God Virgina.

Griffith & Feil Pharmacy and Soda Fountain is this little place, where the food is amazingly simplistic, but fantastic. I love the atmosphere here. It reminds me of some place my grandparents would have taken me as a child, letting me get a HUGE ice cream sundae, for no reason, other than I was there with them. No "special" occasion needed. Just cause.

Makes me happy.

Oh, the food? Amazing. I mean, seriously. Look at these onion rings.

Avery enjoyed the extra waxy crayons (more than her grilled cheese) and some much needed time with her Moe (my mother).

**Since we've been introducing Avery to the potty (and have had some success, I might add), she's become extra interested in anatomy. Enjoy.

The giant bear that welcomes you into the pharmacy.

Friday night. Impromptu girl's night out. Amazing deep fried goodness. "Flashing" bears. Like I said... exciting stuff. :)  

Thirty-One Thursday: Organizing Utility Tote

*Yesterday (better known as "Thursday") was my daughter's 2nd birthday, so I decided to save this post for today.
Hello, friends! For this Thirty-One Thursday, I've decided to highlight the Organizing Utility Tote (which just so happens to be the Oct. Customer Special... see what I did there? ha!) which is a product I LOVE to talk about. This tote was not on my "must-have" list... until I got one. It is one of the most surprising, versatile product I can think of!

Countless uses for this tote! It's perfect as a diaper/kid bag with it's 7... that's right, SEVEN exterior pockets (two, of which, are mesh). I toss my phone in one pocket, my keys in another, and still have 5 pockets for fruit snacks, "dirty diaper bags", you-name-it's. This way I never have to dig for my keys when my hands are full of... well, everything else.
A friend of mine, keeps one on her son's dresser as a "diaper station organizer". It holds all the diapers, wipes, lotion, butt-paste, bulb syringe, etc.
 My team's Director has one embroidered with "I need a maid" and uses it as a cleaning caddy, which is a fantastic idea. Especially for those of us who live homes with multiple levels. One on each floor! It's perfect for carrying your dusting polish/clothes, glass cleaners, paper towels, etc. We also use ours as a "Road Trip Essentials" tote. Great for movies, coloring books, snacks, reading books, crayons... you know, everything you need while traveling with little ones. Or, for yourself: magazines, books, snacks, iPod, etc.
Great gym tote (shoes, workout clothes, deodorant).
Perfect for holding your gardening tools ("Green Thumb" embroidered).

The list could go on, and on, and on...

The Organizing Utility Tote is perfect for everyone! As I mentioned before, it also just so happens to be the October Customer Special (*fantastic deal), so it's a great time to mark some people off your Christmas list! Feel free to email me at or click HERE to view the catalog (and catch a description of the monthly specials).

Thursday, September 29, 2011


09.29.09. Two years ago today, God gave me my greatest earthly gift. I became a mother.

Avery Drew Caudill

It was a long trudge of a pregnancy, where I experienced every emotional extreme possible: elation at the discovery of being pregnant, severe anxiety (having had a miscarriage, not but 2 months before), mourning of the loss of my grandmother, a husband working 3.5 hrs away to provide for us.

But, 09.29.09, at 6:06 PM, everything changed. She was here... finally here.

I held her. I felt her velvety soft peach fuzz. I smelled her sweet skin. I was scared to death and the happiest I've ever been in my life, all at the same time. My life, forever changed. 09.29.09

To My Dearest Avery Drew:
You have taught me so much about the world and myself. I pray that I continue to learn from you daily. I am forever grateful that I was chosen to be your mother. I love you more than you will ever know.

Happy 2nd Birthday, beautiful girl!

Monday, September 26, 2011


Saturday was GORGEOUS, and I had an unusual pep in my step. So, Andy and I loaded up the girls and ended up at the park. Avery was kinda singing in the back seat, not really noticing where we were, until we parked. Wait for it... wait for it..."SWINGS!" There it is. She could not get out of the car fast enough.

She ended up running the wrong way, and got all pouty-slumpy shouldered as Andy and I were trying to help her go the right way... to get to her beloved swings. Once, she realized we were still heading to her favorite thing in the whole world, she perked right back up.

"You coming?"

 Seeing her light up like a Christmas tree, reassuring her sweet question, "Fun?", Yes, sweet pea. We are going to have lots of fun, melts my heart. I understand that I may be a little a lot biased, but she is just a precious child. Intense. Focused. Not missing a thing. Taking it ALL in. Soak it up, baby.

Once, she's satisfied with her surroundings, this is what you get...

and this...

My littlest little is itching to get out there with her big sister. Itching. It won't be long till this bundle of 5 month old sweetness is on the move. Already on all fours, rocking back & forth, scootin' around to get to what she wants. I'm in shock! She's too little for that! It's too early! When did this happen?!

I love that sideways smirk/smile. LOVE it.

Beautiful day at the park. Lovely day with my loves.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thirty-One Thursday: LUT

OK, folks. I'm going to attempt something fun! I'm going to post every Thursday & brag about my favorite Thirty-One products, show examples of how I use them, and share news about this fantastic company! So, here is my first "Thirty-One Thursday" post:

Large Utility Tote

Perfect for an outing with the kids to a grandparent's house, when you need to bring a little more than a diapers bag will hold.

The Large Utility Tote (LUT) is one of my, if not the entire company's, best sellers!

I keep TWO of these in my minivan. One for clutter (see above) and the other to help me take in groceries. Anything to help me save steps! Less trips to & from the driveway!

We use cloth diapers here at the Caudill house (yes, it's a bit more laundry, but it's good for my girls and good for the earth), and the LUT is the perfect place to keep the soon-to-be-nasty clean diapers, ready & waiting.

The LUT is also great as individual dirty/clean laundry baskets. Each family member keeps one in their room/closet. Great for keeping toys and stuffed animals off the ground (we have one for each! ha!). I also got a lot of use out of our LUT this summer. It's perfect for carting stuff to & from the pool! Big enough to hold our towels, pool toys, a few snacks (which were in our thermal totes... but that will be featured in another "Thirty-One Thursday" post, so stayed tuned)... everything we need while splashing around!

Now that football season is in full force, the LUT is the perfect tailgating companion-. Great for all your beside the ball field must-have's.  I had a friend order one of these from me. About a week after she got it, she called me and ordered 2 more! ha!
You can view the online catalog here. Hope you guys got some good ideas! It's never too early to start your Christmas shopping (or too late to add to your own list! ha!)!

Come back for next week's "Thirty-One Thursday" and some great holiday tips! :) Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


It's nasty out today. Raining. The kind of day you can get a serious case of the blahs. The kind of day where it is entirely too easy to pine for your warm covers and fold yourself in I don't want to's and I'm not going to's. However, for me... Today. Was. Magic. I really can't think of another word to describe the feeling. I'm not sure what it is about Florence and the Machine and my Avery, but it makes me very happy (and if your volume is on, you should be hearing them right about... now). Every time she hears them (especially this song), she asks demands "Turn up, Momma!". "Dance, Momma! Dance, Momma!" And so... we do.

Stopping at a red light and sneaking a look in the rear view mirror... seeing her watching my hand movements, so she can mimic exactly what I'm doing... MAGIC. I love that she loves music. I love that she has already discovered that a good song can turn your entire day around. I love that cackle of laughter that flows from her so freely. I love that she dances. MAGIC.

"Dance, Momma! Dance, Momma!"... my new mantra. Not a bad life lesson from a (almost) 2 year old. So, if you see a woman dancing in her minivan, it's me. Rest assured that there is a fantastic song on the radio and I'm following her lead.
 Thanking God, today and every day, for the loves in my life. Enjoy the song.

*READ: These pictures were taken, while we were parked safely in our driveway. Do not call CPS. Have a good day.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Body by Vi Challenge

90 day challenge. I'm doing it. I'm loving it. You should try it. 

I just fixed my first shake, and let me tell you! I wanted it to be tolerable (especially because I forked out the moola... without even tasting the mix... I'm impulsive.), but was SHOCKED at how great this stuff tastes! I immediately sent my husband a text, who was standing by with a big ol' "I told ya so", just to rub it it! Little does he know, that I was equally as skeptical, but let's just keep that between us. ;) I made the Cafe Mocha (recipe came in the program guide).
Here it is:
2 rounded scoops of Vi-Shape Shake Mix
1/2-1 tsp of instant coffee (or 8-10 oz. cold coffee) *I used instant coffee.
1-2 tbsp cocoa mix/powder
8-10 oz. of nonfat milk, soy milk, or water *I used 8 oz. of 1% milk
4-6 ice cubes

Super pumped to try my next one! Apple Pie or Chai Latte... or Peanut Butter? Decisions. Decisions. Progress updates? Of course! 

*AND, if anyone is interested in trying their own 90 day challenge, you can get started here.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Deleted? I guess not...

HELLO, everyone! I have not written ONCE in 2011. It's September. For some reason, I was under the impression (I assume because I haven't written in 9 months) that my blog was deleted... by accident? Or by blogger... Doesn't matter. I was misinformed! 

So... This is my vow to you, my loyal 17 followers. I vow to catch you up on the last 9 months (*spoiler alert: I had a baby.) and I swear promise will TRY to keep you informed on my EXCITING LIFE at least once a week.

OK... How should we do this "catching up" thing? Hit the highlights? OK, here we go: I became a Thirty-One Gifts Independent Consultant in February. LOVE this company! Great looking, reasonably priced products with an amazing, Christian-based company & support system. Some of you that know me, might be a little shocked by this, but being a stay-at-home wife & mother has caused me to take on a little bit of an introvert personality. I don't want to say, I'd "lost part of myself" or anything dramatic... but when your main human contact during the day is a toddler... well, most conversations are a little one-sided. This is a way for me to get out of the house, interact & talk with other adults... I know, crazy concept. Who knew?
So, (**shameless plug) let me know if you'd like to place an order or check out the catalog. Or you can click here to view the online catalog.

April 20th is now a Caudill holiday! We welcomed our 2nd sweet baby girl, Elliot Grae, into the world & this family.

Elliot Grae Caudill. 4/20/11 6:06PM
8lbs. 4oz., 20.5"

 And, let me just tell you... She. Is. Sweet. Looks exactly like her father, with my coloring & 5th generation brown eyes. Her big sister, Avery Drew, also favors her father (his coloring, my brown eyes), but not like this one. It's a little eerie.

See... I told you.

Avery Drew is growing entirely too fast! AND, has hair?! It just happened... all of a sudden! Boom! Pigtails. :)

I'm having a hard time with the fact that this one will be 2 years old at the end of this month. TWO?! But, look at her! When did she get big?

purple piggies

Birthday Fairies

August 20th, I celebrated my first 29th birthday. I have not come to terms with this yet, so that is all we'll say about it. Well, that and this:

Me & my littles

Recap: Life is good. God is great. I'm thankful, grateful, and very blessed. Thanks for reading. Share the love. Send your friends. ;) Talk soon.