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Best. Summer. Ever! Single and loving it!

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She11ybeanz posted 7/10/2014 10:06 AM

So, being a single mom, I have to find budgeted ideas that are fun and creative for both myself and my daughter this summer! I have the best things planned for us and just want to share! 1st off, my best friend of 24 years just threw me an awesome pool party bash at her house and treated us to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant! It was awesome! That was last weekend! I also got to run my 1st 5k of the year (it was a cheap one too) and beat Piper's sperm donor by 2 minutes....best. birthday. present. EVER!

This Friday, I am taking Piper to a Butterfly Release event at the local museum. She is free and my ticket is $25 and includes light appetizers (i.e. dinner) and 2 drinks! :-) I'm gonna dress us both up in our butterfly dresses (yes we have dresses with butterflies on them and NO they do not match ) for a fun mother/daughter night!

Next Friday, I am surprising my other friend of 30 years with a surprise early 35th birthday trip to a local drive-in movie theatre to see her favorite movie "Maleficent!" She LOVES her! Its only $6.00 a person and food there is super SUPER cheap! We can all eat good for under $10 total for all of us! I'm gonna get her a cake and hide some balloons and kidnap her at 9:20....well a planned kidnapping....she just doesn't know what it involves! My dad is gonna let me put Piper to bed and he is cool with us going to the late movie so childcare is taken care of! The next day (Saturday) we are invited to another pool party bash another friend is throwing! More free fun!!!! YAY!!!!!!

I'm thinking of taking Piper to our local zoo the following weekend for $7.50 for myself, free for her and choo choo train rides are only $2.00 a person! So basically $11.50 for the whole day (cause I will sneak water in for me and juice for her in her diaper bag!)

The following weekend is her birthday weekend! I've saved up and am taking her to a bigger zoo that Saturday about 40 minutes away.....we can get a ride on an "Elle" as she calls elephants (her favorite animal) with a photograph for under $20 and maybe even get a pic with a baby white tiger (my favorite animal!) Then, Sunday is her actual birthday and I got "diva" birthday themed stuff on sale at the Family Dollar months ago and am throwing a simple get together at my dad's house! A friend is making her cake! I bought her birthday presents on groupon and at the local consignment sale. (She is getting a pink/purple red rider tricycle that I paid $7.50 for!!!) It even has tassels on the handlebars!

The following weekend we are getting her 2 year birthday pics done and I'm throwing in some mommy/daughter pics....and got a local friend/photographer to do the shoot. I'm gonna do a Dr. Seuss theme for part of the pics and I will have on a "Thing 1" shirt and jean skort and she will have on a "Thing 2" shirt and jean skort since she is turning TWO! It will be super cute and I can't wait to see how they turn out!

I'm just so excited about this Summer! I've found lots of fun and creative ways to do awesome things within my budget! You CAN have an awesome Summer and not go on extravagant vacations and spend lots of money! I think this will be a Summer to remember!!!

DepressedDaddy posted 7/10/2014 11:03 AM

So happy for you Shelly!!!!! Sounds like great adventures!

Angeles85 posted 7/10/2014 11:45 AM

This post made my day

TrustNoOne posted 7/10/2014 12:03 PM

I think this is magnificent!

She11y, it appears you've found your inner peace and happiness.

Enjoy every second of it. Life is good.

PhoenixRisen posted 7/10/2014 12:10 PM

Wow Shelly! I've read your posts over the past year and your growth is amazing! You've had your fair share of struggles but have navigated each one successfully.
Your summer plans are awesome!
Yeah Shelly & Piper!

Jeaniegirl posted 7/10/2014 12:40 PM

Shelly, some day you will look back upon these years as the BEST years of your (and Piper's) life! Promise!

She11ybeanz posted 7/10/2014 12:51 PM

I am happy. I'm excited about doing things with my daughter that she will remember. Making memories together that will last a lifetime! Its nice to finally start really living my life instead of waiting for it to live for me!

Crescita posted 7/10/2014 13:31 PM

That's great Shelly!

If you are looking for more activity ideas I'd suggest you check out your local library. Obviously there are books, but most libraries also have play areas, story time, puzzles, DVDs, and at least in my area, free passes to local museums and zoos.

She11ybeanz posted 7/10/2014 14:35 PM

I have heard of that Crescita! I am members of a single mommies group on Facebook and they have posted free events like kids movies and plays and stuff at libraries! I think that's awesome!

k94ever posted 7/10/2014 15:09 PM

Definitely post the "Thing" pictures.

k9

She11ybeanz posted 7/10/2014 15:13 PM

We will be the cutest THANGS ever! Okay she will.... but I will be there too!

suckstobeme posted 7/11/2014 08:57 AM

Yes, Yes, Yes!

Making memories is what it is all about with kids. That's it.

We do all sorts of great activities like that - there is a food festival, an ethnic festival, a music festival, or an art festival in our area at least once a week and lots of them are free. We go to the "u-pick" fruit farms or the big farmers markets on Saturday mornings. We make cupcakes and pizzas and smoothies with some of the stuff we buy. We have friends over to roast marshmallows and jump around in the sprinklers. We go to the drive-in in our pajamas and bring all sorts of drinks, snacks and blankets. We also love zoos and we're planning to visit a huge one a couple hours away toward the end of the summer. You don't need to have those extravagant vacations or go to expensive amusement parks to make your kids happy. Sure, those things are nice and it's great when you can provide those memories too. But, it's the little traditions - ice cream for dinner once a month or sno cones at the zoo - that make a childhood.

Listen, there are always going to be times when you feel a little bit lonely and you have a "WTF" moment about what's happened in your life. But you are right - you have to start living again and this is the way to do it. Piper is getting older and is really getting into things now. It's so hard when they are infants and toddlers and nothing seems to keep their attention. I told you before she was born that it would be really hard in the beginning and it's going to continue to be difficult - parenting just is - but she will grow into a little companion and you will be able to have tons of fun with her and through her as she gets older. This is a good time for you now - keep enjoying it and don't overthink.

sparkysable posted 7/12/2014 14:40 PM

You should look into a zoo membership. They are usually the cost of what it would cost you to go 2x, and they are good for the whole year, unlimited visits. I got an "individual plus" membership, which means I can bring 1 person per visit, so me and DD, and it was $55 for the year. We go all the time, and they gave us free train ride and free carousel ride tickets, and free parking tickets also.

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