Tuesday, April 4, 2017

March Favorites - Kid Edition

Hey gang!
Y'all know how I love my monthly favorites!  But this month, I'm changing it up a little bit, and I'm doing a "Kid Edition"
 - so this one is for all the lil ones!  
Or all the big ones paying for things for the lil ones ;)

Image result for crayola bath drops

For some reason, Andrew (3) recently decided he was terrified of baths.  Which is not very convenient when you have a toddler who loves playing outside and dipping his hands in ketchup to make "hand prints" on his plate at dinner.  So I explored the bath toy section at Target recently, thinking of ways to make bath time more fun, and I came across these.  
And they have been a game changer.  Andrew doesn't want to get out of the bath now!  They are tiny tablets that go directly into the bath water and magically make the water blue, red, yellow, green, orange, or purple (depending on the tablet or combination of tablets).  They are so much fun, and the kids love picking out the colors and watching them sizzle in the bath, revealing a bright new hue for their water!  

Image result for water wow

Another water toy!  I've talked about these before in THIS post.  They are reusable notebooks filled with magic paper that turns colors when you write on it with the water-filled pen.  There are so many kinds to choose from...we love the ABC's one to work on tracing and learning our letters!  
These are fabulous for car trips, waiting rooms, grocery carts, restaurants, wherever! 
And they are completely mess-free! 

Image result for busy bible
Related image

Ok, this is my favorite favorite of the month!  Andrew actually got this as a gift 2 years ago, but we waited to give it to him when we knew he would really be into it.  Its a handmade fabric Busy Bible, that provides Scripture verses and interactive Bible stories for tiny hands.  I love how it helps Andrew learn about the Bible in a way that he can understand, and it provides a great teaching opportunity for me too!  This would be a great baby gift, baptism gift, or a gift for the toddler who is just starting to sit through the service at Church - we are making that transition soon.  It is a little pricey for a book, but the fact that it is handmade, and simply beautiful, makes it a cherished and beloved item in my eyes.  

Image result for chobani kids yogurt tubes

Chobani Greek Yogurt Tubes 

We have loved these yogurt tubes for years, BUT we have recently found a new way (Thanks Lauren!) to enjoy them!  Freeze them, and they become yogurt Popsicle!  As I type this out, I realize it says right there on the package "freezable", but I somehow never noticed that until now.  
Anyway, the kiddos LOVE this "new treat", and it's a guilt-free, healthy alternative to the typical Popsicle or ice cream dessert.  Great for the warmer months especially! 
*After you take them out of the freezer, just let them thaw for 5 minutes, so they are not hard as a rock.  We cut Ellie's up into little pieces, and for Andrew, we just cut/pull the wrapper down halfway, to eat like a Popsicle :) 

Image result for mickey mouse veggie chips

Mickey Mouse Veggie Chips

Another yummy snack.  We are going to Disney World next month, so I'm becoming that mom who needs everything to suddenly be Mickey Mouse themed.  These cute chips are yummy and fun, and are getting everyone me so excited about our upcoming trip!  They are pretty much just like the beloved Veggie Straws - just in Mickey form ;)

Image result for leapfrog alpha pup

This is Ellie's favorite of the month :)  She got this toy for her 1st birthday, and it has become such a fun little pal for her!  He sings songs, can be dragged around by the handle (or ears), and teaches letters when you press the alphabet buttons.  It's a great little toy - especially for ages 1-2! 

Image result for babiators

These are the best sunglasses!  They are indestructible, cute, comfortable, AND the company will send you a replacement pair if lost!  (I think you just pay for shipping.)  Ellie loves her, and Andrew will be getting a blue pair in his Easter basket this year!  

*Here's Ellie rocking her Babiators, and Andrew rocking his Batman mask 
on our walk yesterday!*

Do you have any kid-approved things you're loving lately?
Do share! :)

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Road Trip Essentials for Kids

Whether you're planning a cross-country spring break road trip, or just a hop, skip, and jump to the lake for the weekend, packing the car can be a daunting and overwhelming task for anyone. 

Road trips during college (or pre-kids) were actually something I couldn't wait for - I always set my alarm clock extra early, jumping out of bed on the day of embarkation, feeling rested and refreshed to get the show on the road.  Snacks were always picked up at the gas station on the way out of town (White Cheddar Popcorn, Sour Patch Kids, and a Diet Cherry Pepsi - because calories don't count on road trips).  My freshly burned (thanks Napster!) CD was appropriately titled "CAR JAMS" and filled with songs from soundtracks like "Legally Blonde" and "Crossroads", and I was ready to hit the highway!

And then, kids!
Road trips are kinda different now.  They are fun and exciting, but now it's filled with goldfish and juice boxes, Itsy Bitsy Spider sing-a-longs, and 97,000 bathroom breaks.  

We have a few kid-filled road trips under our belt, and we are headed out for one next week (to Florida!), so I thought I'd share some of my kid essentials that I've packed for our family.  

Tissues - We probably go through an entire box of these on our road trips.  They clean up spills, wipe up runny noses, hold snacks, dry tears, and are just completely necessary.  

Hand Sanitizer - Self-explanatory.  We can get pretty filthy in the car, and we snack almost the entire time.  So this is essential. 

Sunglasses - Everybody gets the sun in their eyes at some point on a road trip.  And almost everybody will complain about said sun.  These are a must.  And the kids think they're kinda cool with their sunnies on :) *we love these!*

Water Wow - A mess free coloring/activity book.  Great for toddlers!  All you need is water, and it can provide hours of entertainment.  

Lara Bars - These are more for the adults, but they are my favorite snack, and the kids love them too.  Made from only 3 or 4 simple ingredients, they have replaced the junk food favorites I used to rely on in the car.  

Cheese Squares and Pretzel Sticks - I have found that everybody loves these two snacks.  They are easy to hold, easy to eat, and not too messy.  I wouldn't try to introduce a new snack for a road trip - they may not go over quite as well as your classic favorites.  

Crayons and Paper - For toddlers or school age kids, these are always a great activity.  We were given these cute personalized holders (soap containers from the dollar store!), and I love how portable they are.  Each child can have their own, and they are able to just focus on the colors in their container, no messing with 264-count crayon boxes.  My 1-year-old likes taking out the crayons, and then putting them back in one-by-one over and over again.  Until she decides she needs a snack. Then she eats them.

Jelly Beans (or a fun new candy!) - Just because.  They'll make your kiddos realllllly happy :)  Get something that takes a long time to eat. (Suckers are good too!)  I love jelly beans because they aren't sticky, won't melt, and there are different colors to look at, providing a little bit of entertainment. 

A new toy - This can be anything!  Preferably something that is some sort of activity.  The newness and novelty of it will give your kids the excitement and entertainment they may need, say half-way through the trip.  I scooped up these great travel magnet sets from the $3 spot at Target.  I think they'll be a great surprise!  


Now although this next item isn't completely mess-free (at least for my toddlers!), we ALWAYS bring them along for when we stop for potty breaks and lunch!  They are easy, compact, and can be filled with all kinds of yummy and healthy goodness!
These pouches are a staple on our road trips for sure :)  
{Especially when Chick-Fil-A kid's meals might be all they are eating for 12 hours straight.}

Hope you enjoyed taking a peek into our road trip bag!

What are your road trip essentials?

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Monday, March 20, 2017

Let's Shop! One-Piece Swimwear

Although there are a million cute bikinis out there on the racks and on the bods of many gals, there are SO many great one-piece options out there!  Personally I'm in the stage and phase where full-coverage swimsuits just seem to be best ;)
These are some of the ones I'm loving!
Let's Shop- One piece Swim!
TOP ROW  (L to R): 1//2//3//4//5
BOTTOM  (L to R): 1//2//3//4//5 (in white)

{and here's  a *more affordable* option for that black scalloped one-piece}

Last year I bought this one (in black) I LOVE it! It's so flattering and well-made...!
and you can't beat the price!

Do y'all have a one-piece that you love?
Or one that's on your wishlist? 

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Friday, March 17, 2017

Easter Basket Goodies

Have you started shopping for your kid's Easter Baskets this year?  I love this time of year, and filling baskets is just one tradition that I've enjoyed continuing with our kiddos. 

 I also loooove making these Resurrection Rolls on Easter morning - they are a great way to tell the beautiful Gospel story in a hands-on and yummy way!  

Here are some fun goodies I've picked out to help you with your basket filling!
(We are including thisthis, and this book in ours! Along with some $ spot goodies from Target of course - I can never pass those up!) 
Easter Basket Fun!
1 - This classic tale now comes in a board book!
2 - I love this natural and fun egg-dying kit!
3 - This adorable apron set is perfect for little kitchen helpers!
4 - How cute is this unicorn cupcake/muffin kit?!
5 - These sweet ballerina bathtime toys are on my list! ;)
6 - Jellycats are our favorite!  Love this one with an attached blanket
7 - I love this idea for making colored play dough!  Throw a few boxes of the secret ingredient in their baskets, and then make the play dough together!  Scroll down for recipe.
8 - We got these fun sippy cups from Target last year, and I think they are back again!

This recipe went totally viral a while ago and it's no wonder - it's smells wonderful and so silky smooth - my kids' absolute favorite!

Super Soft Jell-O Playdough Recipe

 ~ 1 cup of white flour ~ 1 cup of warm water ~ 2 tbsp of salt ~ 2 tbsp of cream of tartar
~ 2 tbsp of cooking oil ~ 13 oz pack of Jell-O

 1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a small saucepan until most of the lumps are gone.
2. Cook over medium heat, stirring continuously until it thickens into a ball of dough.
3. Place the dough onto a floured cutting board and wait for it to cool.
4. Once it is cool (at least 20-30 minutes) let the little ones knead it, adding in flour until it is no longer sticky (about 1/2 cup).


To fill those adorable unicorn muffin cups above, try this yummy and healthy recipe!

Oatmeal Banana Muffins

~2-1/2 cup old-fashioned oats ~ 2 extra ripe bananas ~ 2 eggs
~1/3 cup pure maple syrup (I use organic from Trader Joes)
~1/4 cup wheat germ (totally optional)  ~ 3/4 cup plain yogurt ~ 1 teaspoon vanilla
~1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder  ~ 1/2 teaspoon baking soda ~ 1 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
2. Lightly grease a mini muffin tin with spray or butter or use muffin liners.
3. Using a food processor, grind oats until fine. They should have the consistency of flour.
4. Add all other ingredients, and pulse until the batter has a smooth consistency.
5. Distribute batter evenly in the muffin tin or liners (fill about 2/3 full). 
6. Bake 8-10 minutes, or until the tops gently bounce back when touched and a toothpick comes out of center clean. 

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Saturday, March 11, 2017

February Favorites


1. Cauliflower Pizza Crust (via

I go through these phases of cutting out bread from my diet (especially around beach season!) and I'm currently on a somewhat modified Whole 30 as we speak.  So I've loved finding new recipes that are yummy and healthy!  
I found this pizza crust recipe on Pinterest, and made it last week.  It was seriously good, even John and kids approved!  We are making it again tonight!  (I topped mine with pesto, basil, and chicken!)

2. Omelets

I've been eating some variation of an omelet every day for breakfast, 
and this is my current favorite combo.  
Two eggs, a dash of almond milk, baby spinach, a dash of garlic salad dressing (my fave), turkey bacon, salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of feta! Delicious and fills me up! 

3. K Cups  

These Archer Farms Buttery Caramel coffee pods are my absolute favorite lately.  I wake up so excited to make my coffee!  I've cut back on creamer, so I needed something with good flavor - these are perfect, a little sweet and a little salty.  The perfect combination in my opinion!  

4. Snacks

My go-to snacks lately.  I've been loving these on an every day basis.  Lara bars are my jam, and I love this flavor.  Also, the Choc Chip Cookie Dough, and the Banana Bread are amazing!
These crackers are the crunchiest, yummiest crackers!  I love them with hummus and turkey piled on top, or just plain for an on-the-road snack!  (I found both at Target!)


1. Lipsense!

My sweet friend, Kelly, introduced me to Lipsense a month ago, and was so sweet to send some my way!  She explained that Lipsense is a unique product that molecularly bonds to your lips, and does not budge, smear, rub off, kiss of, etc. ALL day long.  I was skeptical at first, but definitely wanted to give it a try!  I used to love wearing lipgloss and lipstick, but I hardly wear it now, because I don't want to fuss with reapplying, smearing, or getting it all over myself and the kiddos.    

First impression:
I applied in the morning (first the color gloss (Beige Champagne), then the clear top over it), and I fell in love with the color!  It felt great on the lips too!  Not drying at all.  Throughout the day, I reapplied the clear gloss occasionally, as my lips needed a boost of moisture.  The color lasted ALL day long!  It was beautiful, and stayed throughout eating, drinking, smooching, playground-ing, 
and a quick work-out too!  

Well, I'm hooked.  And I have already ordered more!  Just a week after using Lipsense, Ellie "misplaced" my set, and I literally TORE the house apart searching for my latest obsession!  It was nowhere to be found.  I immediately ordered the exact same set again, because I honestly don't want to wear another lipgloss or lipstick, now that I've tried this!  

*This is Beige Champagne on my lips*

Have y'all tried Lipsense?  Let me know what you think!

2. Milani Blush

Image result for milani luminoso

This gorgeous (and affordable!) blush is an oldie but a goodie!  I've loved it for years, and I always bring it back out during the spring and summer months.  It's the perfect pink color with a hint of golden glow!  There are several high-end blushes that I've tried in this color, and I always go back to this drug-store option!  I find mine at Walgreens or Target. 

3. Anastasia Brow Definer 

Image result for anastasia brow definer

This may look like a repeat offender as well, BUT it's a newer product to me.  I used to love the Anastasia Brow Wiz, but then she came out with the Definer, which is absolutely amazing!  It gives my brows the color, shape, and hold that they need throughout the day, and the angle of the product is perfect for a precise and quick application.  
(My brows are pictured above - and I'm wearing Soft Brown). 


1. Ball Drop Earrings

I have been ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the adorable the Crispin earrings from BaubleBar after seeing them all over blogs and Instagram.  But I was a little reluctant to fork out almost $50 bucks for a trendy piece of jewelry.  So when I wandered into Charming Charlie (I was waiting to meet a friend for lunch!), and stumbled upon THESE look-a-likes, I had to scoop them up!  And I love them!  I wear them all the time!  
*I can't find them on website, but look in your stores! I think they were $12.99!*



Thanks to John, my Dad, and IKEA for this amazing transformation!  
I'm so in love with this organized and wonderful space! 

Do you have any recent favorites of the month??

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Current Loves

Back with another "Current Loves", and this one is heavy on the shoes and the snacks :)
The staples, ya know.

First up...let me preface this particular item with the fact that I haven't actually worked out in these workout pants. 
But, hubby was kind enough to pick these out for me for Christmas... (apparently we like to passive-aggressively send messages to each other through our gifts.  I gave him a razor.  His beard had to go.)
So, I don't work out in these.  I do, however, chase the children, go to the park, run errands, eat ice cream, and watch The Bachelor in them.  And I love them.  They hold ya in, and they don't budge.  The lines are flattering, the quality is top notch, and the price is hard to beat.  And I am a bit of a legging connoisseur.

Champion Workout Leggings 

Ok, shoe time!  First up are these Fringe Sneakers.  I first saw them on Erika from Urban Grace Interiors, and I fell in love.  She mentioned that they were more like a sneaker and a run-around-town kind of shoe, which I love.  They may be a "love them or hate them" kind of shoe, but I for one, love them.  The pop of hot pink underneath the leather fringe is so fun, and I really do end up reaching for these on an almost daily basis.  (They are hard to find!  My sweet friend Brooke sold me hers, so I was lucky! I linked a few websites below with random sizes).


Sanuk Fringe Kat Shoes
(buy here, or here, or steal them from your friend's closet!)

More sneaks.  When I'm not reaching for my Fringies, I'm reaching for these!  I've only had 'em for a week, but they are my new fave.  So comfy.  So cute.  So affordable.  Another hard shoe to find - I linked them below, but shipping is unavailable at this time.  But stalk your local Target, and maybe you'll be lucky to snag them!  Don't hesitate - they are such a great find!  And I love the blush color for spring!

Dolce Vita for Target Slip On Sneakers

Another staple in my current wardrobe has been these skinny jeans.  I've loved the classic Rockstar jeans from Old Navy for years.  When colored jeans were all the rage, I think I owned them in every color (!).  Well now, they are even better than before...beCAUSE, they have a new magic sculpting power.  Don't ask me how it's done.  But it's awesome.  They are like denim Spanx.  And they are skinny all the way down to them ankles, which I love....no gaping at any point.

Another great affordable find, and you can always find a coupon or sale going on so you don't have to pay the full price.  (They are a tad bit pricey for Old Navy.)  But I loooove these jeans.  I prefer a lighter wash in denim for spring, so I opted for the "Jolene" color.

Old Navy Rockstar Built In Sculpt Jeans (in "Jolene")

Now onto food and drinks.
I typcially am a La Croix gal, but I stumbled upon these sparkling waters at Target this month, and this flavor intrigued me.  I'm so glad I tried them!  They are so delicious, and I highly recommend!!
  And for some reason, the slim can makes me feel kinda fancy.
Image result for simply balanced peach sparkling water
Simply Balanced Sparkling Water
(ginger peach is delish!)

Have y'all boarded the Halo Top ice cream train yet?!
I was introduced to them just in the past 2 months or so, and I'm embarrassed to tell you how many pints I've gone through.  They are a "healthy" ice cream, packed full of protein and natural ingredients.  Super low in sugar and calories, you can eat an entire pint for 240-280 calories!  Say what?!  Not to mention, they're so yummy!
My fave is the peanut butter cup.
If you've tried them, whats your flavor of choice?

Image result for halo top ice cream

Halo Top Ice Cream 

One more snack.  I think I was hungry when I sat down to write this post.  Also, every day time I walk into Target, I'm greeted by six thousand neon bikinis, so I'm reminded daily often, that I need to start getting a little healthier with my snacking.  Thus I'm trying some new things, and wanting to share them with y'all!   These chips.  I found them at Target (has anyone noticed a trend?  I swear this post isn't sponsored).  They are delicious, filling, crunchy, healthy, and they come in tons of flavors and varieties.  I'm loving the sweet potato tortilla chips, and I think they have maybe 5 (super healthy) ingredients!  A guilt-free snack that I will definitely be repurchasing!

Way Better Snacks - Whole Grain Corn Tortilla Chips Sweet Potato - 1 oz.
Way Better Chips
(I love the sweet potato!)

And before I close,
raise your hand if your'e so pumped that Rachel has been named the next Bachelorette!  I heard the secret was leaked before it was going to be announced, thus ABC had to make the official statement at a bizarre time of the season.  I just think she's great.  So smart, charismatic, fun, out-going, and classy.  I of course love the diversity this will bring to the show, network, and fan base.  Already rooting for Rachel and her chance at love.
 I realize I sound super cheesy and this show is cray.
 I realize this.  But I watch.  Every time.

Image result for rachel bachelorette 2017

What are you CURRENT FAVES??
Clothing, snacks, TV shows, books??
Do share ;)

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Lots of Love

Blushing Love
Happy Valentine's Day, Loves!

Hoping your day is filled with lots of sweetness, rather if it's through hugs and kisses from your babies, snuggles with your fur babies, cards from your loved ones,
flowers from your man,
or just a spoon and a big ole pint of your favorite ice cream.

I thought I'd share a few pretty things with you, perfect for today, tomorrow, or any day!  Festive earrings, matching mugs, yummy candles, my FAVE top, and more!

(1) Tassel earrings (2) Softest Lounge Top  (3)  Drop Earrings  (4) Sunnies
(5) Boho Blouse    (6) Candle  (7) Wink Beanie  (8) Mug Set  (9) Lip Set 


11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, 
God lives in us and his love is made complete in us."

1 John 4:11-12

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Friday, January 20, 2017

Andrew - 3 Years Old

Dear my THREE-year-old BOY!  
You are not a baby anymore, or even a toddler.  3 years old is old.  I have all the emotions of a mom sending their high-school senior off to college.  Which feels like it's gonna be tomorrow.  Too soon. 
Too fast.  The years have flown by, but let me just say....
They have been filled with the greatest joy and love that I've ever known.  

Because of you.  Because of the gift and blessing you are to our family.  
From the day we found out we were expecting you, our hearts have grown and grown with love for you.  And don't think for a second that our hearts are maxed out.  Because guess what?
Somehow, some way, God keeps making room in our hearts for more love.  

When you quietly sing "Jesus Loves Me" or climb up onto our laps to read your favorite books.
When you rush over to comfort Ellie if she falls down or gets upset.
When you give one of your sweet compliments to me...."I love your dress, Mama!" 
When you say you're sorry and tell us how "po-wite" you are.
When you give us bear hugs.
When you belly laugh while Daddy tickles the mess out of you. 
When you eat all your dinner ;)

You are so loved sweet boy. 
Thank you for making our family so special.   
Happy 3rd year of your precious life. 
God is so good.

*I have kept a journal in my phone of "Andrew-isms" during his 3rd year of life.  Whenever he says or does something sweet, funny, or just memorable, I jot it down so I won't forget it.  
Here are a few "Andrew-isms" at 3 years old.*

A perfectly healthy Andrew:
"I can't carry my toy upstairs...it's too heavy.  And my leg hurts."

Looking down at his feet in the grass outside:
"Watch out - those 'squitos are gonna git me!"

Ellie coughs.  
Mama: "You ok, Ellie?
Andrew (fake coughs): "Don't worry, I ok, too Mama."

Taking bites out of his graham cracker and waffle:
"Look it's a chair!" "It's a choo choo train!"
(quite the imagination!)

Pushing Ellie in stroller outside around the carport.  Puts her stroller up to back steps.
"Alwight baby, we made it!  We are AT the museum!  I'll be right back. Now let me put the shade down so there's no sun in your eyes."

Drawing on his dry erase board, scribbles something:
"Look, Mama!  Do you love it?"
Mama: "I do love it!"
Andrew sighing, "It's beautiful."

Holding play phone up to his ear, nods to Gigi and whispers to her:
"I've just got to go make a quick phone call."

"Stay here Ellie.  I've got to go pee pee and poo poo. I'll be right back.  I'ts gonna be a big one."

Andrew calls from living room:
"What are you doing, Mama?"
Mama: Oh just cleaning the playroom, what are you doing?"
Andrew: "I'm reading books and singing songs for Jesus!"

Driving out of the driveway on the way to school:
"Oh, wait! I forgot my lipstick."

Mama singing "Joy to the World" maybe a little passionately: 
Andrew: We are inside, Mama.  That is waaaay too wowd."

"I just can't reach it.  My arms are too big."

Picking Andrew up from school and buckling him into the car seat.
Mama: "Oooh what color lollipop did you get to bring home? Looks like you got yellow!"
Andrew, gazing at my face, "Yep, yellow.  Like your teeth."

Mama getting Ellie dressed, and pulls her dress over her head. 
Andrew walks in at that moment.
"Oooh baby, you look beautiful."

Instead of "this", he calls is "that":
elbow: "uncle"
ipad: "puter"
sponge: "squish"
elevator: "alligator"
nothing: "nuffing"
cracker: "cwacka"
cupcakes: "cukcapes"

Food: banana with peanut butter
Book: Little Blue Truck 
Song: ABC's and Jesus Loves Me
Toys: Fire truck and airplane, disposable camera

30 lbs
38" tall

Image result for joshua 1:9

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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

A Fire Truck Birthday Party

The only thing better than Andrew's "Birthday at the Fire Station" was the next day!  His "Fire Truck" birthday party!  Months ago when I asked him what kind of party he wanted, this was the first thing out of his mouth!
"And a fire truck ladder on my cake, please!"
Done and Done.

We had our family over for a fun-filled fire truck day, and Andrew loved every second of it!
Balloons, presents, Chick-fil-a, and cake - what could be better?!

(breakfast with the birthday boy!)

(these sweet cousins are just 1 year and 1 day apart!  Evie turned 4 the next day!)

We really had the BEST day!  Andrew loved sharing his day with all his family and cousins.  And of course was so excited about his fire truck themed "everything"!

Thanks to everyone for all the sweet gifts, cards, and birthday wishes!  We are blessed and grateful for your love for our sweet boy and our family!

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