Friday, July 1, 2016

Investing It Forward

Awhile ago my dad stopped by after he had cleaned out an old safety deposit box at the bank. He found my birth certificate (now I have two!) and a few savings bonds my grandparents had given me when I was little. Every year my mom’s mom and dad gave us kids a bond for Christmas. They started out as $50 bonds and then eventually progressed to $100. 

I had already cashed out the majority of the bonds my grandparents had given me over the years to go towards the down payment on our house, but as it turns out there were a few unaccounted for. The amount didn’t add up to a whole lot, but I wanted to do something special with the money.  I decided I would use it to start Ina’s college savings account. I added the bonds to a little pile of cash Ina received for her first birthday and placed them in my “to-do” pile underneath the breadbox in the kitchen and there they have sat until yesterday.

In defense of my procrastination, we are working Dave Ramsey’s plan, and saving for college isn’t until Baby Step #5. Now that we are debt free (#2), have an emergency fund saved (#3), and have a plan(ish) of putting 15% of our income towards retirement (#4), I felt confident in opening up a 529 for the girls. 

I grabbed the stack of bonds and stopped by the bank on my way to work. The nice gentleman at the tellar booth smiled at me as I walked up and told him I would like to deposit some cash and bonds. He asked for my driver’s license, which of course, I didn’t have. After searching in disbelief and only coming up with gift cards and Trader Joe’s receipts, I remembered I had moved it to my backpack the night we went to the Royals game. I offered up my CostCo card in its place, but was told it wasn’t needed.

The teller gave me a weird smile, and I felt like I needed to prove to him that those were my bonds. “My grandpa gave those to me when I was a kid.” 

“Oh” he said as he went to ask a superior if he could deposit bonds with out ID. 

As he left I looked at the bonds and remembered my grandpa proudly handing them out at Christmas. As a kid a savings bond that you can use ten years in the future isn’t exactly the most exciting present (we got plenty of toys as well), but even then I understood how important and special that gift was. 

Thinking of my grandpa made me smile. Gerald was his name. He died of cancer when I was in high school, so while I remember so many things about him, those memories have faded over the years. As I was standing there at the bank, a few came back to me.

He played solitaire. He was an artist and drew a really good Popeye and Mickey Mouse. In his retirement he purchased a sail boat and learned how to use it. He got fully dressed every morning (including shoes), completely changed back into his pajamas to take an afternoon nap, and then fully dressed again when he woke up. He was smart and hard working and worked as a teacher and then as a superintendent. He valued education. 

When the tellar came back and informed me he would deposit the bonds after asking a few security questions, I had this weird sense of completion, like I had finished something that was started a long time ago. I was literally giddy walking out of the bank, knowing there couldn’t be a more perfect thing to do with the money that was invested wisely for me when I was a kid. 

Now I will be investing it wisely for my kids. Hopefully they continue to pay it forward. 


A few college savings resources:

- Financial Peace University

- Pros and Cons of a 529 Savings Plan

- The 529 we chose 

Thursday, June 30, 2016


This week I was thankful for: 

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Day 1

  • A night free of plans.
  • Ina spending the day with our friends The Snyders visiting from Colorado.
  • Cora’s patience with Ina. They are generally pretty nice to each other, but sometimes Ina crosses the line and Cora mostly just takes it. 

Day 2

  • Free splash parks
  • TJ’s frozen pre-chopped and charred peppers and onions. They make fajitas a breeze. 
  • Etsy and the talented people who sell there.

Day 3

  • Sticker books.
  • Swimming pools.
  • Royals games.

Day 4

  • Zootopia. I love movies we all can enjoy.
  • Ina eating THREE chicken legs for dinner. I need to put these on a weekly meal rotation.
  • Watching the girls play in the rain on the front porch. This is what memories are made of.

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Day 5

  • Ina stopped crying at t-ball practice. It was looking bad there for a minute or two, but eventually she dried it up and “played" the rest of the 15 minutes of the “game."
  • Blueberry kombucha
  • Red tomatoes in our garden. (I can use a “s” because we have had two!)

Day 6

  • Rain. Clouds. Air that isn’t so hot its hard to breathe.
  • A Thai lunch.
  • Library books. The concept of a library is genius and I wish it applied to more areas of my life. (Clothes, cooking utensils, tools?)

Day 7

  • Inbox Zero on both my work and personal email accounts. 
  • A beautiful afternoon walk around my office
  • Podcasts. Serial is back in my life. I also listened to this incredibly interesting piece titled, Tell Me I’m Fat.

What are you thankful for? 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Currently June 2016

Currently reading: Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I am 100 pages in and although there are some colorful parts, the book is good and weirdly making me want to go on a backpack hike. Also, I am trying to end the night by reading, even if for just a few pages. 

Currently drinking: Coffee with almond milk, coconut oil, and collagen. I ordered some collagen powder on Amazon after seeing some bloggers use it in place of more traditional protein powders, of which I am not a fan because of their weird aftertaste. The collagen powder doesn’t have a taste at all and dissolves right into my morning cup of joe or smoothie. There is also a chance it could help my joins/hair/skin/nails, but mainly I am just in it for the tasteless protein boost. 

Currently listening to: Down to the River. This is Ina’s song and we listen to it no less than 10 times a day.

Currently anticipating: Our Hilton Head vacation at the end of August. I visited the island twice in high school and even my high school self knew it would be a great place to take my future family one day.

Currently laughing at: Speaking of my high school self - she hated all things running. More specifically, I hated running suicides/killers/lines at basketball practice. Fast forward 15 years and I am running them in my living room, as directed by Jillian Michaels. My high school self would be in shock. 

Currently watching: Gilmore Girls re-runs. I need to be back in the game when their new stuff comes out. 

Currently eating: Paleo Pumpkin Custard - so good for a quick breakfast and pairs perfectly with a black cup of coffee for beginning of the work day email checking.

Currently needing: my hair trimmed. Why do I always put this off until it is completely out of control?

Currently planning: Cora’s first birthday party. We are doing a flamingo theme. I equally want to go Pinterest crazy and not do anything. Things I know I am outsourcing:

  • location: splash park. So happy that my house/yard won’t have to be birthday party ready.
  • cake: not even going to attempt
  • invitations: thank you Etsy
Things I know I can handle:
  • food
  • It seems like there should be something else on this list?
Everything else is up in the air.

Currently loving: my summer capsule wardrobe. I know this is so trendy right now, but for good reason. If you are craving a change in your fashion life, you should totally go capsule.

Currently in shock that: Cora slept though the night last night! Sunday and Monday nights were HORRIBLE. However, this morning I woke up (and of course checked to make sure she was breathing), completed my workout AND am writing a blog post. Take that, sleep deprived motherhood. 

What’s currently going on in your life?

Have a good day!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

My Plan for the Week

Hey there! 

What a weekend it has been so far. 

Friday afternoon I shut my laptop and Dan and I immediately packed the girls in the car and headed to the splash park. 

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Cora loved it until she was cold. Ina had so much fun that she kept on accidentally running into people. After she had to apologize to the third kid that face planted due to her absentmindedness, Ina said (in her best Eeyore voice), “I sure have knocked a lot of people over today."

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Sorry kid, you get that trait from me. I have been accidentally knocking people over since I could walk. I can say that it gets a little better as you age. 

After the splash park, we came home, quickly cooked some fajitas (I had marinated the chicken that morning), and crashed. 

Saturday Dan made breakfast and we donned our swimsuits again to swim at Dan’s grandma’s pool. 

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Some other family and friends were there and we had a great time. After naps (the girls and Dan) and grocery shopping (me), we packed up in our friend Sheila’s van to go to our first Royals game of the season. 

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The game itself wasn’t that fun to watch (I don’t think I have ever been to a winning game against Houston), but we still throughly enjoyed the night. 

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The past few days have been pretty on the go, which can make doing a detox or clean eating a challenge. However, having food prepped makes grabbing a healthy choice so much easier. I was thankful there were plenty of leftovers in the fridge from the week to keep me fed and prevent hangry Racheal from coming out. 

Today we are looking forward to some relaxing and staying put. 

Here is what we are up to this week:


Fitness: The last week of Jillian Michael’s Body Revolution Phase 2. Workouts 7 and 8, Cardio 2, and likely a 3ish mile run. But today I rest. Yay!

What are you up to this week? Any fun summer recipes to share? 

Thursday, June 23, 2016


This week I was thankful for: 

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Day 1

  • Blueberry picking. (Cora has single handedly eaten almost all of our 3 pounds that we picked)
  • Country songs. I haven’t listened to country in a long time, but I switched up my Pandora. I forgot how effective country songs are at making you bawl your eyes out. 
  • Cora doesn’t have an ear infection. This is good, but why oh why is she screaming all night long. (This has since stopped and she slept through the night last night. Yay!)

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Day 2

  • ThredUp (<— affiliate link) Cleaning out my closets just got a whole lot easier and much more lucrative. 
  • Visiting my grandparents and seeing they are doing well at home. See my grandma stand in the kitchen, even if for a few seconds, was beautiful. 
  • Grace. 

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Day 3

  • One on one time with Ina at the pool.
  • Someone “giving” me a free Aldi cart. It always makes my day and restores my faith in humanity.
  • All of my part time job calls got cancelled, so I had an unexpected day off. 

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Day 4

  • Rib bones.
  • Dads. Uncles. Papas. Friends. 
  • Shade. 

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Day 5

  • Paleo coffee creamer. 
  • Plenty of water at baseball practice. Oh man, it was hot out for those kiddos. About 15 minutes in Ina gave up and started laying on the bench, whining, and asking when we could leave. 

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Day 6

  • Cora and her love for kale. I sautéed some kale for breakfast for myself, but once she saw me eating it she crawled over to me grunting and yelling until I gave her some and she pretty much ate my entire plate. 
  • Our laundry shoot. Sometimes I forget how convenient it is just to throw all the dirty clothes down a hole. 
  • House guests. A family from our small group at church that moved to Colorado is back in town visiting and staying with us. There is something about having more people sleeping under our roof that warms my heart. 

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Day 7

  • Completing a 3 mile run FIRST thing in the morning (even before coffee). 
  • Making the last minute decision to take dinner to Dan’s grandma’s house who has a pool. I have to admit that I wasn’t very happy about packing dinner, the girls, and all of our swim stuff in the car after work, but it ended up being NBD. 
  • Steak. Corn. Mmmmm…

(After we took a picture of Cora crawling around with her corn Ina wanted to pose with her’s as well.)

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Have a good Thursday!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

My Plan for the Week

Happy Father’s Day to all of you guys out there. I certainly have some fantastic men in my life and am incredibly grateful my daughters will grow up surrounded by a dad, grandpas, uncles, and good friends who adore them. 

This weekend has been great so far. Friday night we visited my grandparents who are back at home. I called my sister and mentioned we were going and she decided to meet us there. 

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Being a queen is always better with a cousin.

Saturday I worked out first thing in the morning (I am on a mission to re-start this habit) and then had two birthday parties to attend. First, our friend Rayna’s at the local pool.

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Dan stayed home with Cora, which gave Ina and I the perfect opportunity for a little play date. 

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(snapchat: rachealkendrick)

The second party was my niece’s 16th, during which I reached my daily photo fatigue. After the party I dropped Ina off and Papa Dan’s and Nina Stacy’s house so they could take her to a firefly exhibit at a local nature center.

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Judging by the pictures they sent, I think they had a good time.

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Being down one kid I took the only logical next step: I went grocery shopping.

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You might think this was sad for Cora’s one-on-one momma time, but she had a blast. She had a bag of cheese crackers to herself and strangers smiled at and complimented her and she got to ride in a grocery cart while I made fun sound effects. Good times. 

Here is my plan for the week: 

Food: I am starting another round of the DP detox for a month(ish). Basically a focus on clean food without dairy, sugar, or gluten.

  • Sunday: out to eat for Father’s Day
  • Monday: easy chicken and bean bake (I’m seriously not going to stop with this one. I throw it together 5 minute before we leave for Ina’s t-ball practice, set the oven to cook time and come home to dinner ready to serve.)
  • Tuesday: slow cooker pasta sauce with brown rice noodles and roasted brussels sprouts
  • Wednesday: grilled flank steak with chimichuri, smashed potatoes, and roasted cauliflower
  • Thursday: pistachio crusted salmon, herbed rice, and roasted broccoli
  • Friday: grilled buffalo chicken, roasted cauliflower, corn on the cob, and beets
  • Saturday: out to eat/leftovers

Fitness: Week 7 and 8 of JM Body Revolution. Wowza. These workouts are hard, but I can actually feel the muscles in my body getting stronger. I am pretty thankful for a rest day today.

I hope you have a blessed week!

Thursday, June 16, 2016


This week I was thankful for:

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Day 1

  • My in-laws are watching the girls for two nights, so after work I was able to shop and meander around CostCo without having a timeframe to get home by. #momlife
  • A full night’s sleep. 
  • A refrigerator full of fresh and delicious food. 

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Day 2

  • Gilmore Girls
  • Having a terrific date night with Dan to celebrate our 8th anniversary. We went to Justus Drugstore and tried lots of new food. (Bone marrow. cow tongue, pate, rabbit, duck, etc. It was so fun.)
  • Feeling like “me” again. I am afraid I won’t explain this right, because I don’t want it to sound like I don’t like being around my kids. I do absolutely love being around my kids and I miss them a lot when they are gone. However, having two nights away from them allows me to remember things about me, allows me to do things I want to do. The same thing happened when Ina was around a year old. 

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Day 3

  • Packing lists. Although they are more useful when you remember to use them.
  • The nice woman who worked at the hotel we randomly booked 3 hours before we arrived who explained the directions to her location twice to me and then twice to Dan. 
  • Jimmy Johns delivery. Even in the thick traffic of Branson, they were somehow freakishly fast.

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Day 4

  • The fact that my entire family was in swimsuits when Cora started vomiting. As it turns out, if you are going to have a child vomit, a swimsuit is the perfect choice of clothing because it makes for (multiple) easy clean-ups.
  • Rain check tickets at the water park- I guess we have to plan another trip. Darn.
  • Monopoly Deal. I have a new favorite game.

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Day 5

  • Our small group families. We just love them.
  • Go-karts. 
  • Kiddie pools. (Not to be confused with kitty pools. Ina was sorely disappointed to find there were no cats in the pool.)

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Day 6

  • Coffee on the patio watching the sunrise. 
  • Under Armour outlet. Mama has new workout clothes.
  • Podcasts for the drive home while everyone is sleeping.

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Day 7

  • My 5 year anniversary at work! Apparently there is a gift involved. I have narrowed my choice between a Kindle or portable DVD players for the car. I think the girls are going to win on this one. 
  • Danielle took the girls to the zoo yesterday and apparently Ina pet an orange snake. She was sure to tell everyone that she likes snakes now. 
  • Chinese delivery. Why is it so hard to come back and cook dinner after vacation? And exercise? And do laundry? And wake up on time? 

OK, I am done whining now. I hope you have a blessed day! 

What are you thankful for? 

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