Thursday, August 25, 2011

Just Between Friends Sale

I have been intending to go to the JBF sale for two years now.  For those who haven't heard of JBF, it's a huge semi-annual consignment sale of all things baby and children related.  They have any and everything you can think of for babies and kids: tons of clothing, shoes, toys, baby gear, furniture, etc. etc.  Anyway, I had never been and had heard such good things about it I was determined to go this year and see if I could find some winter clothes for Avery.

First let me say two things: 1) I'm cheap and 2) I'm picky.

Yes, I'm picky.  This may shock some of you. *cough*  Only probably not.  No, Avery doesn't have a wardrobe full of designer clothes (or any designer clothes, really) but I do like her to look cute (cute to me, and I realize cute is relative).  However, as previously stated I am cheap and typically only buy clothing on sale.  Chances are, anytime you see Avery, nothing she's wearing cost more than $8 (unless it is a holiday or other special occasion or was a gift).  So I shop frequently, wait for stuff to go on sale, use coupons, etc.  I normally don't do consignment shopping and I never do garage sales or thrift stores.  If I can be frank (and I can, it's my blog), I would rather chew on broken glass than go garage-saleing.

That being said, here's my take on the JBF clothing.  Please take into consideration I went towards the end of the sale (it ends Saturday).  Many items are 25% off today and tomorrow and 50% off Saturday.


First of all, there was a TON of clothing, even this late in the sale, and it was organized well.  But a lot of it looked really worn, was simply not cute, was very dated, or was too expensive (in my opinion).  There was a fair amount of clothing new with tags, but that stuff was on the more expensive side.

For example, a new with tags 2-piece Carters fleece sleep set for $10?  Eh.  I can find then on clearance at Target for cheaper than that.

Despite that, I DID find a few things I liked and felt were a good deal.

Carter's cotton hoodie
Pretty good condition and she'll definitely wear it this fall
New black hair flower
New with tags Dora winter pjs
It's true, she loves Dora

Carter's footed Santa pjs
These look like they were hardly worn

Baby Gap fleece dress
I was on the fence about this one but w/leggings, she can get a lot of wear out of it this winter.
Carter's ballet wrap sweater
Looks barely worn
9 books
Most with her favorite characters: Clifford, Blue, Barney, and Sesame Street
Dora potty seat

Grand total with tax: $40

Not bad!

I would say if you are looking for baby gear and want to shop consignment, this is a great sale.  Baby gear is so expensive (and some of it you don't even end up using that much), but you could definitely find a new or used stroller, bouncer, swing, toys, etc. for a great deal.  And I didn't even glance, but I bet the newborn-12 month clothes are in much better shape since babies don't really wear out their clothes.  The only thing you have to worry about with baby clothes is stains, and all their clothes go through a review process and stained clothing are not accepted.

One thing I did not understand was the bins of used pacifiers (in ziplocs).  Disgusting!! I'm pretty sure those are supposed to be disposed of after a few months anyway.  They also had used (and new, but USED) sippy cups and bottles.  Really, this just seems like a bad idea.  You could probably get what you need at Target for a similar price.  Yuck.

So that's my take on the JBF sale.  I would definitely pop in again next year, but I won't bank on finding the next season's wardrobe.


Last night.  Avery playing with the tub of wipes.

Rob: That's a lot of wipes.  What are we going to do with all those wipes?

Avery: Probably wipe my bottom.

Touché, child.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Monday night was unusually cool (85) so we went to the neighborhood playground after dinner.  Going to a playground with Avery, be it a park or Chick Fil A, is interesting.  She gets really excited to go to the playground, but once there she is a little bit of a scardey cat.  We encourage her to play, go down the slide, swing, etc. but she approaches everything with extreme caution.  Which is fine-that is her personality.  But for the last year she has been extremely afraid of the swings (to the point of crying and clinging to you if you tried to put her in one).

Last night, on the way to the playground, she announced that she would be "fwinging."

And she did.  And she loved it.

In fact, she dominated that playground, climbing up to the highest point, going down the biggest slides, and swinging.

I love seeing her overcome fears.

Monday, August 22, 2011


Today is Avery's first day of pre-school.

I guess?

Recently I've heard so many parents talk about their 2-3 year olds starting pre-school (in the fall, in a few weeks, etc.).  I don't mean just referring to daycare as "school," as I do that too, I mean claiming their 2-3 year olds are entering pre-school programs.  To be honest, I thought these parents were being a little pretentious.  Pre-school doesn't start until they're 4, right?  The year right before they start kindergarten.

All summer activities have ended (water day and ice cream day), we paid an exorbitant book fee, and Avery is in the pre-k2 class (they have PK2, PK3, PK4, kindergarten, etc.).  So, yeah, I guess all signs indicate pre-school for 2 year olds is a real thing.  But I still think the OFFICIAL pre-school is the year before kindergarten.

Ironically, Avery had a meltdown when Rob dropped her off this morning (same class, same teachers).  She NEVER does this.  No matter the day or whomever drops her off, she happily walks in, pulls a chair out from the table, sits down, and begins chowing down on her breakfast.  Today she clung to Rob and cried.  He left after a minute, but she was still crying.  After he got to work he called to check on her and they said she was sitting on the potty and laughing.  So obviously she recovered quickly, but I can't recall more than MAYBE one or two times she has ever done this in the 2 years (and 2 weeks exactly) she has been going there. Anyway, all is well.

A few pictures from Saturday.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Avery's Family

Last week at daycare the theme of the class was "families," so yesterday Avery had some artwork to bring home.  It's titled "Avery's Family."

Of course I asked her who each person was and she pointed out a woman with tragic clothing and shoes Mommy, a weird-looking guy with bad hair Daddy, random cats we would never own, Avery, and...a frumpy elderly lady, also with tragic shoes Grandma.

So what I want to know is-which grandma is claiming this one?!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

New Floors

Rob undertook the project of tiling the kitchen and bathrooms starting weekend before last.  We also had new carpet installed in the bedrooms the same weekend (hello, dust).  Rob had never tiled before, and although it took him a little longer than he expected, he completed it in record time for doing it alone and for his first time!

We bought our home brand new, but we didn't build it.  In other words, we didn't pick out anything.  The house was built with zero upgrades, which meant linoleum and builder-grade carpet.  At the time, this was probably a good thing since we likely couldn't have afforded the house with too many upgrades anyway!  But I digress.  It was time to make some improvements and being the cheap thrifty man he is, Rob decided to do the tile himself.  And it would be a one man show, as I typically don't do household projects.  Not to mention, I'd be manning the toddler while he slaved away.  Which is the harder job?  Toss up.  Although for the record, I made it through without scraped knees and cut up hands.

*All cell phone pictures

Arthur, having a cold one on the linoleum



Bit of new carpet also shown

I cannot stress enough what a GREAT job he did.  In my humble opinion, it truly looks like it was done by a professional.   We are finally getting the house back together (just waiting on the dining table we ordered to arrive).

In the meantime, Avery has been busy becoming a genius, using adverbs like "almost" and  "of course" in regular conversation, counting, saying her alphabet, and telling me about shapes (it's a blue crescent, Mama).  Yes, braggy brag brag.  What of it?

Monday, August 1, 2011


We're breaking records around here.  Just not necessarily the kind of records you want to break.   Hottest week in 15 years, hottest summer in 30 years, and so on and so forth.  And I am not one to complain about the heat in summertime.  Summer is my favorite time of year.  BUT.  This is just ridiculous.  It is oppressive and, dare I say, miserable when it's over 100 at 7 p.m., making evening walks, bubbles outside, and sidewalk chalk in the driveway nearly impossible.

I promise I have a point here.  On second thought...not so much.  It's just hot.

Friday night began our weekend of home improvement aka my house is in ruins.  Rob prepared the kitchen and bathrooms for tile by tearing up the linoleum.  The stove, washer, and dryer are in the garage, the toilet is in the bathtub, and the fridge is in the living room.  Saturday we had new carpet installed in the bedrooms.  Rob has never done tile before, so he didn't make as much progress as he had hoped to, but what he has done (as of last night) looks great.  He is a diligent and meticulous worker (I have to say that or he'll quit).

So with the house torn up and Rob devoting all his time to the tile, Avery and I were left to our own devices.  Essentially we needed to stay out of the house as much as possible.  Saturday morning we were up and off to breakfast at Chick Fil A, the library, and the neighborhood pool.  Lynn met us at the pool, which we nearly had to ourselves for a few hours.  By that time, the carpet was done so Avery was able to get a long nap before heading to Claremore for Pepaw's birthday.
Enjoying a fruit leather
Avery & Aunt Lynn

Avery playing dress-up at Gigi & Pepaw's

I decided Avery and I would go to the zoo on Sunday.  I had hoped to be there by 9 a.m. to avoid the heat but that plan was laid to rest when we didn't get up until almost 9.  We got there about 10:45 and stayed until 1:15.  It goes without saying that starting about 11:30 it was insanely hot.  The zoo has set up numerous tents throughout the grounds with free ice water as well as some water slides, so that was nice.  It is more fun to take her to the zoo now that she knows what the animals are, recognizes them, and really pays attention to them.  Although, when asked before we got there which animal she most wanted to see her response was a bee.
My monkey checking out the other monkeys

Goat at the petting zoo (she would not pet anything)

Big fish in the Rainforest

Huge catfish

Cute giraffe

Having some lunch

Checking out the elephants

And then there was the carousel.  I pointed out the carousel when we first got there and she said she wanted to ride the tiger.  I told her we would do it before we left, and true to my word I took her to the carousel even though by that time I was dying of heat exhaustion and wanted to sprint for the car and blast the air conditioner.  I knew she would be scared.  I don't know where she gets it, but she is an extremely cautious child.  We had the carousel all to ourselves, and as anticipated she chose the tiger.  Only she was scared to sit on it and clung to me like a life raft.  She wanted to get off as soon as it started moving (at a whopping 1 mph) but I made her stay on.  Towards the end I pried her death grip off me long enough to step back and take a couple pictures.  She looks like she's having the time of her life, huh?

As soon as it stopped moving she smiled and said "that fun!"  Oooooook.