Continuing to blend + our latest family photos + an awesome gift idea (with a discount code)!

Happy Thursday!!! Today’s sponsored post is from Pinhole Press I’ve got a great discount for you (these are perfect for Christmas gifts)!  I’ve also got our family pictures to share with you which I’m really excited about!

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I think one of the things that runs through my brain (and Andrew’s too) approximately 15 hours each day are ways to continue to blend this family of ours the best way possible.  Things that I can do to make sure that each member feels loved, secure, comfortable, able to talk to us about anything, a valuable part of the family… and the list goes on and on.

One of my favorite quotes on this subject that I love and totally agree with is, “In family relationships LOVE is really spelled T.I.M.E” -Dieter F. Uchtdorf.  I am constantly on the lookout for things for the four of us (well 5 of us if you count Beretta but she is mainly interested in only joining us on walks/fetch/eating/napping/scratching her belly) to do for our family quality time together.  I feel lucky because Brooke and Knox are usually on the same page as far as what is fun for them to do which makes it easier for us to find stuff they will enjoy doing together with Andrew and me.

I was really excited when I found Pinhole Press because I knew that the kids would love the personalized Sticker Book and The Family Dominoes.  Pinhole Press is the best place to make a personalized gift for your kiddo(s) this holiday!  This holiday season, they have created seven brand new photo gifts for kids ages 3-7!  Brooke and Knox felt pretty cool that our family was on all of the different domino tiles!

Both kids are on quite the art kick these days so they got right to work adding stickers to the different pages of their Sticker Book and coloring.

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They were pretty amazed over the fact that somehow their faces were on stickers.  Kids can even use the sticker book to let their imaginations run wild and turn themselves into their favorite storybook characters if they wanted.

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So many fun memories for me to see going through all of the pics.  Andrew and I talked with the kids about the different memories from each of the pictures.

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Both the Sticker Book and Family Dominoes were perfect for a Sunday afternoon of hanging out at home together.

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They take their coloring pretty serious.

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The Family Dominoes were great for us because the kids learned for the first time how to play dominoes.

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They will just keep getting better and better with it.  We are also leaving the box on the coffee table because I loved the box and it is something the kids can play while waiting for dinner.  Perfect for while everyone is home for the holidays too at your house!

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1, 2, 3… go give Dada a huge hug.

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Both the Sticker Book and Family Dominoes were SO easy to personalize!  I just picked out some of my favorite family pics and dragged and dropped them into their colorful templates!  Perfect gift for kids that is entertaining, thoughtful and educational!

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I also wanted to share a few of our family photos that we took a few days ago!  We are in love with them and we will be making another sticker book for the kids with them:)  We are going to put a big one on the wall in the front room too!

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Beretta was excited for her very own photo;)

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Love this crew of mine!

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***Click HERE to create your own gift for the family.  Use the code RUNNERGIRL to get 20% off all Pinhole Press products.  Offer expires 12/12 at midnight!!!***

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Do you have a lot of things hanging on your walls?  Art?  Family pictures?  Mirrors?  We have nothing, it feels pretty bare and I need ideas!

People with dogs… how long have you had your dog?  What are their favorite activities?

How is your Christmas shopping going this year?  Do you start early with the shopping or procrastinate until right before?

My own question for you… do you keep up with speed work during the holiday season or take a break from that this time of year?

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48 comments

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I have a labradoodle Duncan. He will be 8 in 3 weeks! My boyfriend has a big lab that looks a lot like Beretta. Our favorite activity is taking them to the state park nearby and letting them run. Duncan seeks out squirrels and chipmunks. Chester notoriously goes where he shouldn’t. Luckily he has a great recall. We take the dogs to play on the beach too off-season. They are lucky pups.
Blending for my boyfriend and I has consisted of the dogs learning to get along which has been effortless for the most part. I don’t have biological kids but my boyfriend has two girls. 13 and 11. Thankfully they adore me and we have grown a wonderful bond over the last two years. I share my niece with them (who is 16) and they love that. They look up to her as a role model for sure. And whenever we are together I make sure the 11 year old has access to her dad at all times. She is very clingy to him. Loves to hold his hand and sit on his lap. I think that is so important.

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How fun! I just moved, so I really have zilch on my walls right now. I have a painting I made at Painting with a Twist from a couple of years ago, so I might hang that up again.

I do keep up with speed work during the holidays (had a tempo run this morning) because I usually race a half in December and another one in February, so I have to make sure I’m ready for those.

By the way, love the booties you’re wearing in your family pics!

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The family photos are gorgeous! Lots of beautiful people (and an adorable puppy too)! We have lots of art and pictures hanging on our walls. It feels homier that way to me. We have a golden retriever and he loves pretty much the same thing Beretta does … playing, fetching, running, riding in the car, belly rubs, basically being anywhere we are. I stay with the speedwork through December. I typically take time off in February or March. I’m a CPA, so that is my crazy time of year work-wise. I think it makes sense to back off of training in a natural rhythm with your life seasons. For some, December may be a very crazy time of year though, so that makes perfect sense!

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I have a whole wall dedicated to family pictures and art — it’s like a huge collage that we keep adding to. On other walls we have cork board with racing bibs and mementos, a tapestry that’s embroidered with neat pictures.

My doggie has been with us for about 6 years. He loves snuggling — he’s an older Pekingese, so that’s what he wants to do.

We started planning the shopping in September — but haven’t actually purchased one item yet. Is that bad?

As a teacher, I have most of the holidays completely off — so I take time to visit family.

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Beautiful pictures!!!!
Love.

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I hang a lot of family pictures on the walls, especially in their bedroom. Lately I’ve been thinking about getting actual art that I like, but I haven’t pulled the trigger yet. There’s a photo collage of windows I really like.

I feel like this Christmas is a time warp back to 1997. My 7 year old told me she wants lots and lots of beanie babies! Apparently that’s the cool thing with second graders this year and I really don’t know how to handle that. I never bought one during the nineties; I was one of those snobby people who pointed and laughed at all the idiots. And now I’m buying them for my kids!

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That family picture.

Beretta’s tongue.

Priceless.

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When our son was born a few months ago, I used a Shutterfly gift card to make a canvas family collage that now hangs on our wall. Other than that, are walls don’t have too much on them.

We have a basset hound named Lola that is 3. Her favorite thing is to lay on one of our laps. Once or twice a day, she’ll get a wild hair and run around the house and bring you a toy, but she’s pretty mellow. She loves to be wherever we are.

We’re trying to keep things budget-friendly this Christmas, so I’m crocheting slippers for most of my female friends/relatives and I’m making both sets of grandparents photo books (also on Shutterfly).

Love the pictures!

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We have two dogs. They both like to run but only our older one gets excited ahead of time! They also love to go for rides. As silly as it seems, we try to give our older dog her special alone time sometimes. They like to play fetch and really like running like idiots through the prairie in our backyard. And of course, both like the hour every night when the kids are in bed and we have 30 to 60 minutes to relax…

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Those pictures are amazing!! Such a beautiful family you have!

WE have lots of family pics in the living room. I have kid art hanging in my kitchen. I did one of those painting events with my best friend last january and that’s hanging in the hall.

We have had our current dog Chance (a white and tan pitbull) for just over a year, he turned one in July. He loves chewing and running, fetch. Sometimes I get him to dance with me in the kitchen. We love him. Our previous dog Riley (blonde cocker spaniel) passed away a year ago last July. He was 16 years old.

I have done virtually no Christmas shopping. My youngest birthday is the 11th of Dec and I have to get past her birthday before I can concentrate on Christmas. the Mister and I usually and up going to target together and doing the bulk of it, esp the kids on the Saturday between her birthday and Christmas. I have finished on Christmas Eve before ;-)

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Love y’all’s pictures!! We have canvases of multiple pictures — wedding, family, etc — and I just love the memories they bring back!

Our almost 11 month old golden retriever, Dallas, loves the dog park — somehow his two busy working parents bore him ;) , but he loves greeting ALL the people and kids at the dog park and then maybe playing with the other dogs when he’s done getting everyone to pet him…such a silly boy! :) He also was in our Christmas pictures this year and it was so much fun!!

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You guys have such a cute blended family and I’m happy for you. I love Brooks outfit in the photos, it suits her personality well I think. Those photos are also all so gorgeous…I would hang them up.

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I’ve just been running however I feel like running each day. today’s treadmill run turned into speed but I had no idea that would happen until it happened lol. love the family photos (and brooke’s outfit!). I have a lot of pictures of my son hanging all over the house and plan to do a really nice wall display of photos from the bar mitzvah once I go through the pictures with the photographer!

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The sass from Brooke in that last picture! Too cute!
We pretty much just have wedding pictures on our walls. I’m trying to recruit my sister-in-law to help me decorate because she’s awesome at the kind of thing, whereas I’m kind of hopeless.
My husband and I have a three year old rescue mutt and my 10 year old basset/corgi mix. We (or I for my older dog) have had them since they were puppies. They are totally spoiled. Our rescue was even in our engagement pictures. They like to walk, sleep, and beg for food. The younger one likes to run with me too (sometimes-other times I’m too slow for her and she gets distracted) and is obsessed with playing ball in the backyard.

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That last family picture you posted – amazingness. You all look fabulous, but Brooke’s smile and little pose are just put it all over the top. Love it!

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Your photos are beautiful! If the smiles on Brooke and Knox’s faces say anything in all of your posts, you are both doing a great job of making your family happy. Your two children are adorable and it looks like they have known each other their whole lives. Merging families or not, your family is a great motivator for all families to work hard to value each other. Love the post!

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Thank you so much Kim! It really is crazy how well they get along with each other, I don’t think they remember much before they met! I hope you are having a beautiful day Kim! Thank you for taking the time to comment:)

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I have pictures of places we have visited on our walls, a framed needlework of a carousel that my husband’s grandmother made (it reminds me of the carousel in Mary Poppins – fave movie as a kid) and a few other paintings/prints that we loved. I love looking at them and remembering special visits/people.

Missy is 13.5 and loves sand, snow, car rides, belly rubs, hotel beds, and treats. She no longer enjoys crowds so we cut down on some of the places she goes.

I will buy things that i think people will like year round and keep them in a specific spot (or I forget I have them/can’t find them)

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I’ve had my pup for almost two years! Adopted her from a rescue on December 27th, 2014! Her favorite activities – Fetch, running around the dog beach, and visiting grandma’s house because she gets so many treats there!

I find that I actually do MORE speed work in the winter! I run majority of my miles on a treadmill and playing around with the speed is the only way to keep things interesting!

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P.S. – ADORABLE pictures! You guys are a beautiful family!!

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The family photos are adorable!!!! You all look so perfectly happy together :)

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Your family photos are so beautiful and I love the family dominos! I’m one of those people that have tons of photos on my phone and laptop but I’m horrible at printing them out. Most of my printed photos are old and I need to get better at printing new ones!

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Oh my sweetness, the hip and heel up on Brooke!
I have frames on my wishlist to finally frame and hang some of our favorite travel and family photos :)
I am like 1/4 of my list done which is saying a lot for me on Dec 1st. I’m sure there will be a little scramble at the end but nothing too crazy. I’m checking out this pinhole press right now, Thank you!

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Your family pictures are so cute!

We have three dogs: Pomeranian who is 8 years old and two Dachshunds that are sisters that a year old. They love to go for walks and eat sweet potatoes. :)

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I only have one gift left to get for my brother. And I have no idea what to get him. He’s tough to buy for.

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If the theory is that hills are speedwork in disguise + my neighborhood is nothing but hills + I’m pushing a running stroller up them all time (or trying to push the stroller up…some hills I don’t make it all the way up), then I’m never NOT doing speedwork. If you mean actual, real people speedwork – at this point in my life I never do it so the holidays don’t make any difference. ;) :D

But here’s a question for you and my fellow readers: how cold is too cold for a toddler in a stroller (assuming he is wearing coat/gloves/hat/blankets/etc, of course)? I have the advantages of sun and very low humidity on my side but the disadvantages of often breezy/windy and unclear 3 yr old communication about how cold he is or isn’t. (As ecstatic as I am to be back in the mountain west, this admittedly was never a problem in the Bay Area.)

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I’d love to hear people’s thoughts on the “how cold is too cold?” question. I have a 14 month old in Wisconsin…yikes!

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This is a very very very good question! When I ran with Brooke it was when I was living in California so I never faced the too cold question! I think the best person to ask would be your pediatrician!

Hills + pushing a jogging stroller = way harder than speedwork! WAY TO GO R!!!

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What a beautiful family!!!
We just moved into our house not too long ago and were busy with lots of renovations, so our walls are still bare, but i’d like to hang stuff up soon to make it feel more like home!
We have a tall yellow lab/greyhound mix, Lola, who’s 5.5 years old. She has her moments where people still ask if she’s a puppy, but most time she’s pretty chill. She absolutely loves going out for a walk or hikes and going for car rides and sticks her head out the window.

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Our walls are bare. We built our house and moved in 6 months ago but I can’t decide for aure what I want. We have a 6 month old puppy. He is only 4lbs and considered full grown. We have had him a month and he loves to play chase with the kids or cuddle. Super chilled and laid back. I have yet to start Christmas shopping. I know what we are getting everyone but have’t purchased a thing. I plan to start this weekend. I plan on continuing with speedwork once or twice a week.

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I love speed work as a HIIT workout so I keep it in my regular rotation during the seasons that I run.
No dogs.
We are moving back to California,but to LA which is new to me, so nothing is on our walls. I’ve been living at my moms house so I am excited to put my own things up at my house. I have paintings from my MIL and a beautiful picture of the bountiful temple where we were married. And we will put up a family picture.
I’m really thinking about the dominoes. It looks fun!

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OH.MY.GOODNESS!
Those family photos are PERFECT !
Ev

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Oh thank you Michelle!! I was shocked how well Beretta did for the pictures (well, like 5 of them;)

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whoops…
I meant to say

Everyone (including Beretta) is so photogenc! Beautiful!

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We’ve had our dog Maea for 5 years . . . ever since she was 5 weeks old! We got Charlie at 8 weeks, and he just turned 6 months. Fortunately, their favorite activity is to chase / tackle / hide from / jump on / chew on each other, so I don’t have to do much for them. We lost our dearest Beatrice Arthur, who was 12 years old, over the summer . . . there is still a poodle-shaped hole in my heart.

I always start Christmas shopping early because if I wait until too close to the big day, I WAY overspend. Like WAY overspend.

Also, I choose to believe that Santa doesn’t believe in speed work, and it’s obviously important to keep him happy this time of year. :)

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I agree with you, time to make Santa happy this time of year haha! I love that!

I am so so sorry that you lost Beatrice Arthur this last summer, that breaks my heart. I still miss my poodle.

xoxox

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Thanks, I forgot you had a poodle, too! Aren’t they the best?! I never would have planned on getting a poodle, but I found her as a stray in Nashville and we were joined at the hip ever since . . . she turned out to be the most amazing buddy ever.

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These family pics are toooooo die for!!! I love taking pictures! The more the merrier! And I love having pictures of family all around the house! It just makes me feel how blessed we are:-)

Because I feel like we are constantly eating from November until January my goal for this month is to work out everyday in December!!!!

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I just LOVE your family pictures!! Your blog blesses so many, it only seems fitting that you are blessed with such a beautiful family! :-)

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Oh thank you so much Blake! That means the world to me. You guys bless me over and over again with our friendships (even if we have never met;). Thank you!

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I got Amazon Prime this year and it had been a game changer for holiday shopping. SO nice to shop online when you have a toddler, because as I have learned, toddlers hate shopping. Big bonus points for the fast and free delivery. I’m usually always a procrastinator but this year I’m almost done with my shopping already. Thank you Amazon.

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Hi Jannae, I’ve been a long time follower but haven’t commented in years. We exchanged a few emails as we were both going through our different breakups. You probably don’t read all the comments but I just wanted to say your family pictures are amazing. You all look so cute together. Brooke is so beautiful and she photographs so well. I am so happy to see you are doing so well and to see you so happy. Sending your family love on this holiday season.

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Love love love your family photos- so perfect!

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I have a 13 year old yellow lab who is the absolute best. Her favorite activities are still going for a walks and playing fetch (although she can’t play for as long now as she used to).

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Speed work—I just ran a goal race in mid-November, so my running has been cut back by my coach (the awesome Mary Johson with McKirdy Trained), and the speed work has been cut out for now. My next 1/2 is in January, next goal 1/2 in March, so I know the speedwork will creep back in. I’m enjoying the break from it and not worrying about losing fitness b/c I have a nice base :) The break will help with staying healthy in the long-run :)

Shopping! I’m about 95% done! The most fun gifts I bought were things for my runner friends :) Pretty much blew an entire paycheck at American Girl for my two daughters. lol $$$$$ but easy :)

Happy Holidays, Janae!

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Love the family photos! My two pups are always included in our family photos too… I know they love it. ;)

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Your family pictures are so sweet!

We just had a photoshoot with our newborn daughter to make a gallery wall in our living room because ours walls are completely bare since we moved. Pinterest has some great ideas :)

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GREAT pics!!!

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