it takes a village.


This boy.


This little, blue-eyed boy with a BIG heart.

He steals MY heart.

His wish this Christmas is not for an iPod, Pokemon, or Legos. The one item on his Christmas list?



To raise $10,000 for clean, safe water for 500 people.

It takes a village, friends.

Can you help?

Will you help? Will you share his story on your blog, on Facebook, and through email? Or place a Pig with a Purpose at the center of your family gatherings this week?


Let’s harness the power of OUR VILLAGE to help another village thrive. We can do this, I know it.

Clean Water for Christmas.

the post where i show off my video-making skills

or something like that.

Apologies for my sweaty gross self, my wooping and hollering, and the squeaky sound coming from The Crew. Watch it anyway and pass it on! THANKS!

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9 days left in our campaign!

where does the time go?

This post quickly turned into a smorgasbord of topics. My brain is a little {lot} scattered lately.

Holy crap! This year is just flying by {even though there are moments it’s not}. Things have been so crazy-busy around here with the end of school, you would think I would be relieved that it’s summer break. And maybe I would be if our week’s were not filled golf, track, soccer, dance and you name it. I guess with four kids, that should be expected? I also have regrets over not sticking with any sports after junior high… i was super-shy and moved a lot.

We had branding at my Dad’s place last weekend, which is one of our favorite times of the year. Great friends, family, and fun, although my heart couldn’t help but be a little sad that Cyndee wasn’t there.

Danny, being Danny:


My brave, courageous husband rescued this l’il baby:


Speaking of babies, some of you know that my husband had a reversal a few months ago. Why is it that when we are TRYING to conceive, it just doesn’t happen, but when we are not, BAM! Baby! Life handed me a low-blow this week when I was late by almost a week. A WEEK. I am NEVER late. Except for now. When we are trying to have a baby. MEAN.

Remember when Bridger raised $5,622 in 90 days for a freshwater well in a much-needed community? Well, today he got to decide what he wanted to have his plaque say. It will be engraved and hang wherever the well will be {we don’t have that info yet}.

Scorpion Well: Water Change Everything -Bridger, 7

It’s so… Bridger! :)

While we are on the subject of charity: water, the kids and I are doing our “homemade” race this weekend at the bunkhouse. The plan was originally to do the San Diego RnR race, but it just didn’t work out. So it’s 13.1 miles for me, 3.1 for the kiddos. Wish us luck! We are still hoping to raise enough money for yet another clean water well, as of this minute we are at $1,143 out of a hopeful $5,000! You can donate securely here:

We are finally gaining some ground on our home improvement projects, which puts us one step closer to selling this house! We have hopes of building this house when we find the land that catches our eye, wherever and whenever that may be. The thing about moving is that you really get in touch with what works and doesn’t work for your family. We are soooo excited to start planning! Scouring pinterest does not help with my impatience, either.

So, what’s new with you? Have any exciting plans for this summer?

rays of sunshine

Things have been rather bumpy lately. {i feel like i say that a lot?} Frustration runs deep, and I am feeling the stress of having my husband home for a total of 4 days in five weeks. Some days it takes everything in me to parent, and I will admit sometimes I just fail. Things could be worse, but they could also be ohsomuchbetter. I need to work on that.

I haven’t been training for my 1/2 marathon like I envisioned. I use the shitty weather as an excuse. A lot. Yesterday was perfect. I asked the twins if they wanted to go for a walk, and they excitedly agreed. I have committed to paying $1.00 for every mile that our completes until our charity: water campaign ends on June 18th.

right now we have raised $878!!

We set out with the intent for a leisurely stroll… BB said he would go to Beau’s house {which is about 1/2 mile away}, Ashton wanted to do “the loop” with me {2.78 miles}. Well, we ended up doing a whole 5K {3.1 miles}! And there was barely any whining, which is a miracle in itself!

I left the boys home and set out for another 5K for myself.

Shortly before 8, Ash asked if I wanted to go walk/run a little bit more. How could I resist that?? We ended up doing a few more miles!

I am so proud of these little guys. I would have never even CONSIDERED doing two miles when I was their age!


  • Mom: 8.42 miles
  • Ashton: 6.02 miles
  • Bridger: 3.1 miles

Another $17.54 in the bank for our fundraising! Woot!

This photo? Priceless. The sun felt amazing. {check out the Garmin on his arm, he has totally overtaken it }

donate by clicking here!

45 days. {giveaway}

45 days to reach our goal.

45 days to raise enough money to save lives. 1 BILLION people do not have access to clean water.

45 days to fund a project that will help women and children spend less time walking miles and miles for {dirty} water, which will enable them to spend their time being educated and bringing in income for their family.

45 days to make their days so much better and brighter.

photo by J & S Lang

I’ve been thinking and thinking of ways to raise money for these people, how to give these children a chance at life. Besides just running. I have channeled my inner-crafter-that-i-never-knew-i-had. I’m making things. Pretty things. {of course, even if you don’t like pretty things, you can just simply donate here}

Like these bracelets:

and these cute bobbies:

The bracelets are made of jersey knit and are currently available in aqua, chocolate brown, black, and camouflage. {note: camo is only printed on one side of fabric, so their is a mixture of white in the bracelets, but I personally think it adds to it and I love}.

The bobby pins will come in a set of 2… colors and sizes will be a surprise! Variety of circle, square, and heart buttons {turquoise, pink, brown} on a flowery cut-out from a vintage dictionary!

Or maybe you would like a simple charity: water bracelet. Black with white lettering.

Last, but not least, let me tell you about Ariah Fine. He is a father of two and has a mission of teaching children who have the privilege of clean water more about those who do not. To serve this purpose, Ariah wrote the children’s book Clean Water for Elirose. He donates the profits from all sales directly to clean water projects. He first contacted me when my son, Bridger, gave up Christmas to fund a water well. We have been in touch ever since, and he is working with me to sell his books and the profits will go to our campaign! Read more about Ariah on the charity: water blog. These books would make great gifts to the children in your life, teachers, and libraries!

How to make your purchases?

All are $15!

  1. Donate directly to our project: Send me an email {} with the products you want and mailing address!
  2. Send the money through paypal {}. Make sure you put the products you want and mailing info in the comments of the transaction!
  3. Send me a check directly through snail mail. Email me for mailing info {}!

If you live in the Mandan/Bismarck areas, I will deliver products if you prefer, otherwise all orders will be sent out via USPS. Also, if you are going to Fitbloggin’ in a few weeks, I can also deliver, if you wish!

Now, for the giveaway!

I am giving away one the above products to {two} winners!! Winner’s choice!

How to enter:

I need your help getting the word out. I have a lot of money to raise in the next 45 days. I’m offering you these ways to enter:

  1. Share my project on Facebook, you can use this link:
  2. Share my project on Twitter, again, use this link:
  3. Blog about this project, feel free to use any of the above product photos in your post! Link to this post by using this link:
  4. Post this pretty little button on your site {copy and paste the code from over there —–>}

FOUR WAYS to enter! Easy! Make sure you come back and tell me what you’ve done!

There you have it! Four ways to win! Contest will end Friday, May 13th and winners will be randomly chosen and announced the following day! Good luck!

Thank you so much for all the help in spreading the word and donations.

There are no words for how much it means to me.


you capture:: youth



Miss Averie, acting like a diva

Did you hear? My husband, the kids, and I are collecting dollars and coins until we reach our goal of $5,000 {or beyond} to fund a water project in Africa.

{can you, will you, help us?}

We are making up our very own 1/2 marathon (kids are doing a 5K) and will spend the next 3 months training for it until race day on June 12th. We are very excited. Read more about our family here and why we are doing this here.

yuck water

yucky water

clean water

clean water


on our way to $5,000

we are running for water
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meet the andersons {team: bunkhouse}

we are the anderson family. a bit dysfunctional, a pinch of crazy, but filled with love.

our little man, Bridger, rocked his campaign for clean water over Christmas. his grand total? $5,622. {thank you} our entire family has grown to admire and love the mission of charity: water. because of them, the people who believe in their work, and those of you who give your money to make these miracles happen, villages in developing nations can say good-bye to their dirty, unsafe, bacteria-ridden water and have a new chance at life. with our donations, these families are given access to clean water and educated on the importance of hygiene and adequate sanitation.

this spring, our family is running for water. we are making our own course at our most favorite of places {the bunkhouse}. mom and dad are doing a half-marathon {13.1 miles} and babes are doing a 5k {3.1 miles}. june 12th is the day.


meet the family:

this is Melissa. she enjoys seeing the world, capturing it with her camera and dreams of brightening the world through humanitarian missions. she spends a lot of her time on her four lovely children, and loves to watch her community {the sisterhood of the shrinking jeans} grow and inspire. sunshine makes her happy. she’s not a runner, but loves trying to {sort of} run for a good cause.

this is Justin. when he is not busy rockin’ the bakken and working hard for his family, he enjoys riding around and doing crazy tricks {giving his wife a heart attack} on his beast of a 4-wheeler. he surprised the wife when he agreed to do this little project with her. she’s a little jealous that he can not run for years and then just get out there and his legs go and go.

here we have Kane. he’s busy being a teenager {and all the perks that go along with teenage-dom}. he enjoys following in his father’s footsteps and likes things that go fast or shoot and football. he plans to smoke us during our race.

say hello to Averie. she is our little girl who isn’t so little anymore. when she isn’t dancing, you can find her texting, talking on the phone, daydreaming about boys and shopping. she was a bit slow to agree to this whole idea, because, hello, her legs will hurt. luckily, she is being a good sport and joining us on this adventure.

next we have Ashton. he is one of our twins and he likes counting things, golf, money and puffins. he gave his brother many allowances during his clean water for Christmas campaign. he has a heart of gold and is one funny guy. this will be his third 5k!

last, but not least, is Bridger. our other twin, he inspired us all by opening his heart and giving up his Christmas presents in hopes of helping children in Africa. when he is not busy trying to change the world, he enjoys creating lego masterpieces, drawing, soccer, and space. he completed his first 5k last summer {and beat me}.

i hope you will follow along with us for the next three months as we put our hearts and souls into training and fundraising. we are very excited and blessed to have this opportunity to help raise awareness {and money} for this great cause.

we’re a little excited, can you tell?

with your help and a little of this:

we can make this:

turn into this: here to donate.

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the super-sized random post


Instead of telling myself, “tomorrow” and then never finding the time that I thought I would have, I’ve decided to forgo the 10 million blog posts that have been swimming in my head and just get it all out there. I can then have a nice, deep breath and a clean slate, right? Okay, good.

*I have been having lots of trouble sleeping the last few months. I wake up ALL.NIGHT.LONG. Either I am heading to the bathroom to pee, tossing and turning and cracking my bones, or having crazy dreams. Apparently, I have also turned into a sleep-kicker. I kicked my husband last night. Not the scoot-over-you’re-too-close-and-obnoxious-type of kick. A real kick in his shin. He woke up and asked me what the hell I was doing. Duh. Al Roker was biting my foot and I was kicking him off.


*Speaking of disturbing nighttime activities, one of  my kids slept-walk last week. Scared the crap out of me. He was standing next to my side of the bed talking gibberish. Freaky.


*Did I ever mention our trip to Colorado at the beginning of the year? It was awesome and sunny and warmish, until our 2nd day there, then of course it got REALLY cold and we had blizzard conditions. We enjoyed the scenery, scoped out some houses (none of which we liked), visited the Denver Science Museum, and Averie and I got to take delight in Denver’s shopping malls. I had coffee on morning with one of my best friends from college. We drove down to Colorado Springs and spent the night with a friend of ours and had an intensely competitive game of PIG. Do not try this at home, unless you are wearing a sweet helmet.





*Our oldest kid turned 14. Yikes.

*Justin and I turned 32. Double Yikes.

*Our family spent New Year’s with the Rosten family. We should really be on America’s Got Talent. Really.





*I’m going to begin training for the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll 1/2 marathon again in the next few weeks. I am organizing a team of people to join me, too! That means YOU! We are going to be raising money for charity: water, will have an awesome coach for support and a custom training plan, and most of all, it will be FUN! You know, other than the walking or running 13.1 miles.

team: shrinking jeans

Where did January go? What have you been up to?


i love

products i’m loving, right now:

avalon organics vitamin c face cleanser

it rocks. that is all. found it at target!

silver jeans

i may have about 632 pairs of them in all sizes.

victoria’s secret body by victoria bras

no bra photos. :) i love the unlined full-coverage, and santa brought me a few of the lined full-coverage and i thought, “no way”, but then i put one on and omg, my boobs have never looked so perky, so i kept them.

notebooks by banana paper:

recycled notebooks. owls. what more is there to say?

whole bean coffee from three avocados:

no photo, as i am out and waiting for more to arrive!

coffee is grown in uganda, and 100% of net proceeds go towards bringing ugandans clean water.

what are you loving right now?


You must read this article about Bridger on the charity: water blog. 

I wish you all the most merry Christmas ever.


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