Monday, August 28, 2017

the best products of catconla 2017


this post is sponsored by our wonderful friends at nutrish cat food. as always, the thoughts and opinions are our own.

if you follow us on instagram, you no doubt noticed the many pictures we shared from catconla. it is one of our favorite weekends of the year and we love seeing all the amazing people and the kitten and cat based products there. this year was no exception and we left with a new list of our favorite products that we can't wait to share with you. 


handbags by triple t studios

we loved the items at catconla that managed to be both cat-centric and also beautifully made and stylish. triple t studios makes really striking handbags with simple, clean lines and a feline flare. not only is their product worth noticing, but they are genuinely lovely people as well. we couldn't help but love them and their products. you can find your dream handbag at triple-t-studios.com.



necoichi japanese kimono collars 

heather is a huge fan of all things related to japanese culture. she has been to japan a few times, grew up with japanese exchange students and even studied abroad in japan herself. she loves the beautiful kimonos and fabric that japan has to offer. these collars were at catcon this year and they are beautiful. they are made from kimono fabric and are vibrant, beautiful and full of clean lines and graphic designs. we couldn't resist getting one for lola to wear at home. you can get yours at www.necoichi.com



be one breed stackable cubes

these things are really multifunctional in design and made with adorable fabrics. they are compact and can fit in any home space. they also come three to a package so if you don't need all three, it's a great product to share with a friend. the cubes come with scratching posts, a dangling toy and a padded pillow for cats to sleep on. they are stackable or can be used their own. we are sure our cats would adore them! they are available to purchase at www.katt3.com or beonebreed.com


shen & sam co. candles

we fell in love with shen and sam co. candles last year at catconla and we loved them again this year. we love their simplicity and the cat patterns combined with beautiful scents. the candles are all soy and hand poured...and they smell amazing. 





handmade catnip toys

we adore toys that are made by hand. we have found that, not only are they made to be more durable than mass produced products, but they also are full of clever designs and bright fun fabrics that are unique and give your cat a one-of-a-kind creation. these two vendors combined clever ideas with excellent workmanship to showcase really fun and beautiful cat toy designs. we couldn't decide between them so we had to include them both. 


these little adorable toys can be found at www.whimsilyeverafter.com.


these can be found at www.kittyjones.com

the groom ninja

oh my gosh, you guys. this product is amazing. we were actually searching the whole convention for something to help with our cats and their shedding and we just happened to stumble upon this product. we watched the videos the vendors were playing to show how the product worked and we were convinced we had to give it a try. it lived up to the hype and then some. we *love* it and so do our cats. this is the lola hair we collected in less than a minute. seriously. imagine all of this hair on our couches. so gross. we saw a shirt that said "cat hair is lonely people glitter." let's just say that cat hair is the only type of glitter we would rather do without. you can get yours here at www.groomninja.com.


sweet lola purred the whole time. she loved it!

nutrish cat food

okay, we know cat food isn't necessarily a product at catcon, but nutrish was giving out samples of their cat food for everyone who wanted them so we couldn't resist. we are loving the new indoor complete recipe for our indoor cats. overeater mr. darcy can't get enough of it. if you haven't tried it for yourself, check out what you are missing at www.nutrish.com.


you can also follow nutrish at:

that's it! that's the best of the best and they are *all* worth trying. if you didn't make it to catcon, at least you can enjoy all that it had to offer!

Sunday, August 27, 2017

our favorite things about catconla

this post is sponsored by our friend's at nutrish. as always, all opinions and thoughts are our own.

catconla. the very words bring a smile to our faces. the weekend of catcon is one we look forward to for an entire year. we look forward to the people watching, the friends we will see, the amazing products, the parties, the pet adoptions and everything in between. this year didn't disappoint. we drove into pasadena early saturday morning and prepared ourselves for two days of unbeatable fun. 

throughout our weekend, we wrote down a list of our very favorite things from our time there. while it was tough to narrow down our most loved things about the weekend, there were some moments that stood out above all the rest. if you didn't make it to catconla 2017, here is some of what you missed and the reasons why you should go next year. truly, it is a weekend you will not forget.


the costumes

it is impossible to imagine catconla without the amazing costumes. people go all out and we love browsing through the aisles and finding pictures of the best of the best. some of these people don't just love cats, they want to be cats and they strut their cat versions of themselves with pride. it's amazing and while these pictures give you a small glimpse of what we saw, there is nothing like seeing these people in person to put a smile on your face.

there was a male and female version of a crazy cat lady on the same day!

day one did not disappoint. there was so much costume goodness.

okay, this person was not only dressed in a full cat suit, but also wore a backpack that vibrated and "purred" when she was around people. you can't make this stuff up!

while we didn't wear costumes, we did rock some cat ears we were gifted from one of the booths!

and we represented in the cat pun department in spades. 

the nutrish 360 cam

this addition was new to catconla this year and it as the very best way to see all of the people in their amazing costumes. how could you not want to see everyone twirling around in their best cat wear? we couldn't resist and had to jump on for ourselves. 


we didn't hold a candle to this gem. she looked amazing from every angle!

the nutrish booth and caticatures

nutrish never disappoints and as the title sponsor this year, they went above and beyond to make the catcon experience one to be remembered. we love how they use design to make us feel like we are in their very cool, funky, cat-inspired living room. we felt so at home we wanted to camp out and stay for a while. their cat themed artwork covered the walls and each person who entered the space was met with a caricature artist that combined each person with their pet into a caticature. we laughed at ours for days...mostly because we are pretty sure they put heather's face on the face of the cat and my face on a cat's butt. i'm not sure what i did to the artist to make him draw me like that but our kids thought it was hilarious.

each part of the nutrish booth was carefully designed with thoughtful details.

two artists worked all day, each day drawing caticatures.


ummmm...

adoptions through the pasadena spca

we absolutely adore the fact that catconla works to find homes for dozens of shelter cats over the catcon weekend. we visited the adoption site on sunday morning and at that moment, seventy seven cats and kittens had already been adopted. we love visiting with the precious kittens up for adoption and, while we loved on the new kitties, we were reminded of last year and heather's adoption of sweet lola. catcon holds a special place in our hearts because it is where we met lola and she became a part of the third boob family.


sweet babies up for adoption

if i didn't already have two, i would have been so tempted buy this sweet one.


buzz feed's "party right meow"

buzz feed always brings their "a" game to catconla. this year they did it through an amazing party at "the rose" in pasadena and we were treated to cat photos, a human sized cat scratching post, cat themed cocktails, a kitten petting station and a place to make your own cat ears. we loved having an evening to play and enjoy the cat treats while visiting with friends and making new ones. each detail was carefully thought of and it was definitely a highlight of our weekend. 

seriously, where else would we ever be able to do this?

it was so much fun cuddling sweet kittens!



getting to see our wonderful friends 

we always cherish moments we get to spend together. we have been friends for over half of our lifetimes and it is a joy to get to spend time together. it's especially great when we get to spend time together doing things we both enjoy. catcon is a weekend full of laughter and friendship and, truly, the greatest thing about it is that we get to experience it together.


when we began working with nutrish several years ago, we anticipated working with great people but we are so thrilled with the friends we have made in that company. the nutrish team is full of amazing people with compassionate hearts and a passion for what they do. they make these conferences and all their events not only worth attending but worth remembering. we truly appreciate their friendship and support of us over the years and we are so very thankful for them. they truly are the very best part of catconla and the part we look forward to repeating year after year.


we couldn't love nutrish more. we love the company and we love how they give back. a portion of nutrish proceeds goes to rachael's rescue which was created to help animals in need. as of december, 2016, $17.5 million has been donated. this money has gone toward food, medical supplies and treatments for these unfortunate animals. we would love for you to love them too.

you can find nutrish at:

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nutrish
instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nutrish/
twitter: https://twitter.com/nutrish
and at www.nutrish.com


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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

nuggets of wisdom from great wolf lodge


my friend is currently on a family vacation to great wolf lodge. this is her first great wolf experience and she quickly shared with me some tremendous nuggets of wisdom she had gleaned from her first day at the water park. these truths were too good not to share. please read and take these to heart before you head to a water park near you. 


1) extremely hairy men should really avoid speedos. 


let's be real. all men should really avoid speedos. no one wants to see all those franks and beans. still, excessive body hair takes the speedo wearing to another level. if you lay in the water and you can't distinguish your body hair flowing in the waves from the hair on your head...it may be time to cover up just a bit more of the body...and the hair. 


2) cute little triangle bikinis are for the beach...not the water slide. 


i'm all for a cute bikini while one is laying on the beach. if you love a bikini on the beach or at the pool...go for it! the water park, however, may call for leaving that bikini at home. the point of water parks is to shoot your body down slides and have water rushing at you from various directions. when water is pushed at you with that force, those bikinis don't stand a chance. there's a whole lot of accidental naked happening at the water parks, people...a whole lot of accidental naked. save the adorable bikini for a place where you will feel and be able to recover when it is pushed off of your private bits.


3) thongs are also probably not a good idea...especially on your teenage daughter. 


i don't want to start something controversial here, but i don't really want to see anyone's butt cheeks if i can help it. i'm all for girls being confident and feeling great about themselves, but let's be real. wearing a thong to a water park is not only impractical, but it also serves to gather particular attention. guess who is at water parks, you precious teen girls. dads. dads are at water parks...and very hairy men in speedos. if there are any cute teen boys there, they are with their families and will be eating pizza with their little brothers and then sharing a giant family suite where they will bunk up with several siblings. great wolf lodge isn't the place to flaunt what you've got. put on something sporty and go on the water slides. you will have so much more fun than you would strutting your half naked self for hairy speedo men to see. 


4) swimming suits that fit are always the most flattering. 


you guys, just find something that fits you well and that won't come off down a water slide. don't worry about the size or the style. just be comfortable and get out there. if you are popping out of your swimming suit at any location (under, over, on the side), it's not flattering. not on anyone. find a suit that fits. 


5) the most beautiful people are the parents who are enjoying their kids


seriously. the parents who are laughing and loving their kids are stunningly gorgeous. they are living the life of joy out there down those water slides. they aren't worried about their swimming suit falling off or their cellulite legs. they are out there building memories with their kids and that, my friends, is beautiful. just let loose and be a kid with your kids. my favorite memories as a parent are those that happened when i left the serious parent behind and rode the water slide, got under the water, splashed and played with my kiddos and just learned to let go. those moments build memories that will last a lifetime, both for your kiddos and for you. live it up, my friends, and you will be absolutely gorgeous in the process. 

Friday, July 28, 2017

to the man who did the unthinkable...

to the man who assaulted a five year old...


where do i begin? what do i even have to say? you are the worst kind of predator. you, the man who sat in a bathroom stall and waiting for silence, silence except for the happy chatter of two little boys. you chose an amusement park full of happy, joyful children to yank two boys from their innocence and into your bathroom stall. when they got away from you, you tried to sneak out of that bathroom, a towel over your head to avoid recognition. you used your mental disability as an excuse for your behavior, right after whispering the words, "don't tell your mommy" to my little boy and his friend. your disability excuse is a disservice to every beautiful, wonderful mentally challenged person i have met, who meet their disability with honor and grace and morality. you, you are the worst kind of predator, but you do not win.



to the mother who took my son and yours to the amusement park...


you are the superhero of this story. you did everything right. when two little boys needed to use the restroom, you let them experience that tiny piece of independence, knowing they were going in together and expecting them to be safe. you didn't just watch from afar, you stood at that bathroom entrance and listened and waited for those two little boys to come marching out. you listened to their silly chatter and then, in the middle of an amusement park full of people and chaos, you noticed when their chatter stopped. you noticed the quiet. you noticed the seconds ticking by. you noticed things weren't right...and you acted on it. you called their names. you waited as my son came out first and you listened to his story of a man in a stall. you believed him and you called out your son. when his story was the same, you did the impossible. you secured the boys with another mother and you marched into that men's bathroom, not knowing who or what you would find. you confronted a stranger and a potential predator and, when he ran, you ran after him. you managed to overtake a man, younger than we are and probably faster. that's what moms do. we fight for our kids. we stop at nothing to protect them. we put on our superhero capes and we show the world what bravery is. that's what mothers do and that's what you did, not just for your own son, but for mine.



to the countless people who stepped in to help...


you are the brightest of lights in the darkest of moments. 


you were the mom who sat with little, scared boys while a man was being chased down. 


you were the gentleman who blocked the path of the man running to slow him down enough to be apprehended. you didn't know what the story was, or what you were facing, but you bravely jumped in anyway. 


you were the man who used the restroom before my son and his friend entered. you calmly and carefully washed your hands as those boys entered. my son noticed you. you were the "nice man who didn't do anything scary." you, just by being there and by being good, gave those boys a few more seconds of innocence. without saying a word, you protected two little boys a few moments longer. a few seconds made a world of difference in what could have happened to those boys. you mattered. 


you were the amusement park worker who brought my son ice cream as security and the police were called. when i arrived with all my other kids, you did the same for each one of my other children. you were older than me, and i'm guessing you are a mother because you mothered each of my kids. you fed them, got them special drinks, brought them ice cream. you took some of the fear away and started to turn things around with simple, kind gestures. you are important.



to my little boy...


i'm so very proud of you. i'm so proud of you for running away. i'm proud of you for speaking up and telling someone what happened, even when that someone wasn't your own mommy. i'm so proud of you for being brave. i'm proud of you for knowing the difference between right and wrong and for speaking out against the wrong. i'm so proud of you for telling your story to the people who needed to hear it, people who can testify for you so this won't happen again. i'm proud of you for helping to put a stop to a sexual predator. you were brave so other little boys don't have to be. this experience, sweet little boy, won't be your story. your story will be one of bravery, of knowing what is right from wrong and standing up for what is right, even when faced with insurmountable obstacles. you, my beautiful, brave, strong little boy, won't carry this around with you. your strength, your humor and your resilience have won that battle already. this will not be your story. your story is full of strength and, like your name means, of laughter. no one can steal that.



to the lost man who did the unthinkable...

you do not win today. so many other good people win. so many brave people win. so many kind people win. with one sick choice, you altered the course of your own life. you set into motion a series of consequences that will follow you for a lifetime. you have written a page of your story that will be unshakeable and will be a part of a label that will be with you for the remainder of your days. with one choice, you have cemented the trajectory of your future...but you have not cemented mine. you have not ruined my faith in humanity. you have not ruined my precious boy. you have not tarnished my faith in god. you do not win. everything good wins today, everything brave, everything hopeful, everything kind...those things win today...and they are so much bigger than you.

Friday, July 14, 2017

marco polo...the long distance relationship's best friend


it's no secret that the third boob is made of two bloggers who write together. our long story of friendship has been written about several times before. what may be news to some is that we write on two different coasts. we see each other only once or twice a year and we use every means possible to keep in touch with one another. even during my family's five years living in south america, i could count on one friend who would still call me weekly, regardless of how difficult those calls would be to make. before the days of skype, before voyage, before FaceTime, snapchat, whatsapp or even facebook, we made our friendship a priority and we called and talked, even when those calls cost a small fortune. 

over the years our communication hasn't really changed, just the ways we communicate. over the last couple of months, our newest obsession has been marco polo. if you have the app, you probably already know what we mean. if you haven't heard, let me just tell you it is a long distance relationship's best friend. in case marco polo is new to you, let me explain. it is basically a video message you leave for your friend who can then watch when they are free and send you a video message back. i am going to admit, i was skeptical at first but now i am completely hooked. it took some convincing for me to get my other friends on board but once they joined in, there was no looking back.


besides just the fun and convenience of video messaging, there are extra filters for both the visual portion of your message and the audio portion. this may be the greatest thing about marco polo. there is nothing like a video message with my voice distorted to sound "macho." truly. there is nothing better. there is also an option to add people to a group video chat. several of my college roommates who used to live together now talk via polos every day...and it brings me unmeasurable joy and laughter. i have laughed more over marco polo than i have over anything else in this last month. 


let's be real. life is complicated and adding another piece of social media about pushes me over the edge. this one, however, is worth the time. it takes all the pressure out of being available to talk in the moment or for extended periods of time. i can listen to someone's video while i'm washing dishes and send them a quick polo when i'm sitting and have two seconds to myself. it's a way to stay connected in the midst of this crazy parenting life and it gives us something to look forward to throughout the day...little burst of laughter and joy. that's an app that is worth it's weight in gold. 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

help a girl out

this post is sponsored by our wonderful partners at nutrish. as always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. 

i love my little rescue cats. we adopted them from our local humane society over five years ago and they make me smile every day. while i'm sitting here typing, one of them is keeping watch over me and guarding the window to the outside world. i know you all will be glad to know that no lizards, birds or insects will ever come near me while they are around. i'm completely safe. 


there's a lizard on that pot. rest assured, we are all safe thanks to these two. 

they play together, fight together and generally bring us all joy. i can't imagine life without them and i'm so glad they were able to be rescued at the beginning of their lives so they could rescue our days time and time again. 

this is a rare jane sighting. she, like some ladies, doesn't like her picture taken.

we have been back to the humane society where we found them several times since the day we finalized the adoption. the kids love to spend time there playing with the cats and dogs and begging us to basically start a zoo to house them all. 


how could you not want to adopt this little ball of cuteness?

the animals in the humane society or in other animal shelters near you are the sweetest things ever. if i could, i would take them all. in the meantime, i'll go visit them all and try to help the shelter out with donations to keep them well cared for. 


i took my youngest with me last week and we headed out to the humane society for a visit. this trip we were able to donate some amazing nutrish dog and cat food thanks to our friends at nutrish. 


i'm not sure what is happening with my son's pose here, but he loves this cat, "countess." he loved her so much in fact that he cried for two days that we didn't bring her home on the spot. 

this sweet pumpkin....i could have taken him that moment. 

love at first sight with these two...


the workers there were so excited about the dog food that they already had the bags opened and in their food buckets in the time it took me to go back to my car for another load. they are in need of pet food and other items for these animals and every single donation matters. so, if you have a moment, here's what you can do to help.


donation needs:

pet food: they need all kinds of pet food. specifically, adult dog, adult cat, puppy food, kitten food, both wet and dry.



non-clumping clay litter: any brand will work

laundry detergent and bleach: they wash the blankets of those animals all the time!

dog toys: soft plush toys aren't allowed at our humane society because some of the animals eat them so they ask for only sturdy toys like congs and tug ropes. 

kitty toys: any kitty toy will do.

towels, blankets and sheets

monetary donations: the humane society pays for spaying and neutering all the animals, heart worm medication, vaccines, surgeries, flea treatments, etc. for each and every one of the animals they care for. this is an extremely costly endeavor and they can't do it without the help of those who give financially. i love how they have their giving organized. i can give knowing i'll help get a cat their heart worm medication or that i could possibly save an animal's life through a needed surgery. 



if you can't do any of the above, consider adopting, not shopping for your next pet. they really are the sweetest of animals and they seem to be even more devoted to their families, as if they know they were rescued from something and are always grateful. 


if you can't adopt another animal or give at this time, consider switching to nutrish pet food. we love nutrish not just because we believe in their product but because they give back to animals in need. a portion of nutrish proceeds go to rachael's rescue which was created to help animals in need. through december 2016, over $17.5 million has been donated. this money has gone toward food, medical supplies and treatments for these sweet animals. 


you can also help spread the word about nutrish. the more people that purchase nutrish for their pets, the more that will be donated to rachael's rescue. nutrish has a new nutrishmojis app that makes it super easy to spread the word. you can check out the app at:
  http://apps.swyftmedia.com/nutrishMojis or just search for it on your your app store. i made one of mr. darcy today. he always looks pissed off even when he is completely content so none of the "good morning" or "i love you" mojis fit for him. these two were much more his personality. 




whatever you do, just do something. it's so rewarding to help out in any small way with animals or people in need. there is such joy in giving back and if we all give just a little bit more of ourselves so someone or some animal can have a better life, imagine all the good we could do. help a girl out. let's make our world just a little bit better, together. 

take a moment and follow nutrish to see all the good that is happening through rachael's rescue!

facebook: www.facebook.com/nutrish
instragram: https://www.instagram.com/nutrish
twitter: www.twitter.com/nutrish

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Friday, March 10, 2017

survival tips for indoor cats

this post is sponsored by our friends at nutrish. all opinions and thoughts are, as always, our own.

my cats are exclusively indoor cats. they just are. i feel like a helicopter parent where they are concerned. when they were baby kittens, the most precious little fur balls ever, all i could imagine was sending them into the great outdoors to be a snack for the countless hawks and coyotes in the woods beyond my house. i couldn't handle the thought of them becoming a meal for some neighboring predator so, indoors they stayed.



they have free reign of the house and chase each other day and night over every square inch of our place. they are healthy and happy but there are some things that i have to do differently because my cats are exclusively indoors. if you have indoor cats of your own, these tips can help to make your little fur ball's day too.


give them some way to exercise and play

my two cats are brother and sister and, like my own children, they have a love/hate relationship. they play and fight and then fight and play all day, everyday, until they crash and sleep for ten hours. they do a pretty good job of simply playing and wrestling with one another but i also like to provide other toys to keep them busy. my absolute favorite new toy for my cats is this spinning butterfly. it is literally endless entertainment and they cannot get enough of it. whether you buy this one or find an amazing toy of your own, toys to entertain your cats will keep them (and you) happy while they are in the house.



or just give them a box to play in...

get a great scratching post

cats can destroy furniture faster than you can say retractable claws. there is only one way to avoid that and that is with an amazing scratching post or toy. there are so many out there but i don't want anything too big or cumbersome in my house. there are a couple that we love. 



get a great litter box

i hate cleaning the litter box. it is literally my least favorite chore. i know it costs some money, but buying a good litter box is worth every. single. penny. if you get a great box when your cats are kittens, they will be happy with it their whole life through. this one is absolutely magical. one box to throw away, once per month. done. best. box. ever.


give them food created for indoor cats


it's no secret that we are big nutrish fans and have been since our cats were kittens. we were thrilled when they announced their new "indoor complete" cat food. this is perfect for our little hair balls. the cats love the food and we know the cats are getting just what they need for their indoor cat health. rachael ray nutrish indoor complete chicken with lentils and salmon recipe is a natural food for cats with added vitamins, minerals and taurine. the recipe contains a real superfood blend to meet the complete needs of your adult indoor cat and is available right where you shop for your family's groceries. chicken is the number one ingredient and the recipe also contains lentils which are rich in fiber and protein and low in fat to help maintain the optimal body weight in your cats. this is especially important for my mr. darcy. my oldest son says, "he's not fat, he's just big boned." he may at this point just qualify as fat. he is hefty by any standard and needs a good cat food that can help him maintain his rather broad but lovely physique. 


we also love buying rachael ray's nutrish because of how they give back. rachael's rescue was created for all the forgotten pets, the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve. a portion of the proceeds from each sale of nutrish is donated to the rachael ray foundation, which helps animals in need through rachael's rescue. through december 2016, rachael's rescue has donated more than $17.5 million dollars to pet charities and other organizations that do good for animals. the funds are used for food, medical supplies, treatments and more for animals in need. it's amazing what they are able to do with the money they give and i feel good about feeding my cats what they need and giving back as well. it's a win-win. 

there you have it friends. cats really are so easy to care for and they make the kids so happy...and me as well. a few simple tips can make life with indoor cats just a little bit easier. that's something i can get on board with any day.