Tips for on-the-go Moms

August 29, 2018


Special thanks to Dorel Juvenile Group for sponsoring this post! Please note, Hollyn sits rear facing in her seat and we take practicing car seat safety very seriously. These images were taken strictly for the best angle highlight the Maxi-Cosi product.

What is necessary to keep in your vehicle and ways to utilize the space wisely


We recently down sized vehicles from a Dodge Durango with three rows to a Ford Edge and along with that went space being minimized and smaller in our back seats for the kids. We're all about simplifying where we can and always be intentional using what we have so it made sense for us and it's give me the push to rethink what we are constantly carrying and bringing in our vehicle with us on a regular basis.

I wanted to share a few tips I've learned over the years we've changed vehicles and added kids to the bunch to make sure you can be successful on those days out and not feeling like your car had a bomb go off inside!

USE A STORAGE BIN
We have two bins in my car that offers a change of clothes for both girls, extra diapers, wipes, shoes and a blanket and this allows for me to know I'm always stocked up in case something happens spur of the moment and I need extras in a pinch. It's also clean, organized and not thrown all out the vehicle because it's perfectly prepped in a bin and placed in the trunk of my car.

The second bin is for when we are going out for dinner and may need distractions for the kids. It's filled with easy $1 and $3 items from Target like Play-Doh, stickers, coloring books, and puzzles so if our circus is... being a circus, we have options in the car to help tame and get through a meal. This has helped us so so so much!

CARRY A TRASH BAG ON HAND
Nobody likes trash and after finding half eaten sandwiches from my 12 year old smashed in the backseat doors, I started carrying a trash bag in the car and I restock it every time it's used. The purpose? Every time we are home and getting out of the car, if there is trash, everyone picks it up, fills the bag and the car is clean. Voila!

OPT FOR CAR SEATS THAT WORK WELL IN YOUR SIZE VEHICLE
Because of the vehicle change, we needed car seats that were a touch more narrow than our Maxi-Cosi Pria 85's we had for the girls so when Maxi-Cosi launched their new 5-in-1 Magellan car seat that takes you from baby through booster (5lbs to 120lbs!!), I was all in! The fit was much better for the backseat and fitting the girls and Drake together while still offering ample foot space and the entire trunk for storage.

These feel much more sturdy and stable than previous seats we've had and of course, I love having the girls in matching black to keep things clean and simple.

Shop the Maxi-Cosi Magellan, here!

DON'T BRING SMALL TOYS IN THE CAR
Whatever you do, do NOT bring small toys in the car. One of the kids will drop them on the floor, never to be found again and a meltdown will ensue. I allow the girls to typically bring one toy each or a book with them when driving but it has to be something larger. IE: a stuffed animal (Violet is a fave) or noisy play car keys - but shopkins are not permitted. Drake typically brings a book to read or headphones to listen to his iPod.






So tell me, what tricks do you use when being out and about with the kids and keeping things clean and minimal to always have a picked up and clean space? One last pointer, get your car washed regularly to maintain extras lingering- we typically wash once a week!


Oils + The Bedroom

August 26, 2018


Let's talk about sex ba-by. Let's talk about you and me.

Just kidding. Let's not do that. But let's DO talk about the amazing ways oils can support you and your hubby and how you can be using them in the bedroom! Every time I mention this idea people tend to be mindblown and want all the details so I'm hoping I don't miss anything here that you can snag through Young Living to up the ante on your next time between the sheets! ;)

SENSATION MASSAGE OIL
Whether it's a back massage, legs being rubbed down or unspeakable areas, this baby smells and works like a charm. Perfect for you and your man and it's filled with Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, and Geranium it gives a romantic aroma so you better keep it on hand.

BLACK PEPPER + PEPPERMINT
I like pairing these two to go in with a bang! How awkward is this blog post but you guys!! It's highly requested - I'm just giving it to ya straight. The black pepper + peppermint EOs together gives an icy hot feeling so steer clear of actual areas because it could be intense. Instead, apply on inner thighs, bottoms of feet, behind ears... etc. They're both able to be ingested so if that's your thing, have at it!

VALOR
This is the oil known for Courage and Bravery and sometimes I need that in the bedroom. Haha! It helps I wear this as my perfume so I can be ready at a moments notice.

GOOD VIBES ROLLER
This is for your man! With Idaho Blue Spruce, Orange, and Bergamot it's the perfect combo to get him riled up and quickly. IBS is great for men as it may help to increase testosterone levels. It smells woodsy but a little sweet, increases awareness of love & relationships, and “let's the stallion out of the gate”! Boom. Job done.

YLANG YLANG
Pop this baby in the diffuser with Cyress and create a romantic, moody atmosphere. It's always a sign when it's going in the diffuser that something will be going down that night. Or someone... ;)

PROGESSENCE PLUS
If you know, you know. I could talk for days about Pro +. This serum contains a natural progesterone from wild yams that helps to balance hormones. It has done wonders for me with hormonal issues from skin to my mood and everything in between. I definitely notice when I have spaced applying it (so does my husband- poor man!). And where does it come into play in the bedroom? Helps enhance libido! I apply 3 drops in the morning on my forearms and 2 drops on the same spot at bedtime.

EN-R-GEE
Because sometimes life is hard and all you want to do is sleep after a long day of work, kids, dinner, bath time... roll some En-R-Gee on the bottoms of your feet around dinner time for a pick-me-up for an evening devoted to your hubby and making sure you two are connecting and staying intentional.

GOLDENROD
Known as a powerhouse oil and really speaks for itself. Hehehehe.

Now that I've fully embarrassed myself I think it's time to call the posts quits! In general, oils are so so versatile and perfect for people to use in so many areas of their life. Don't even care about the wellness side and just want a good time in the sheets with your man? This is your nudge. Have a good Sunday evening.... *everyone runs to their oil shelf and pulls all the things for tonight*

xo




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4 Tools for Toddlers Succeeding at Chores

August 13, 2018


When I say Emery has the softest, sweetest heart on the planet, you have to understand it's so very true. It's innocent and she just wants to do all the things right and right the very first time. She strives to be the best and gets so conflicted when she can't quite get it right and she has the most OCD tendencies I've ever seen in a little tiny soul before.

So when we introduced her chore chart a bit over a year ago, she was so upset when she wasn't able to accomplish making her bed by herself, which was on her task list. It was a struggle every single day and she was always crying and crying in defeat. I saw Beddy's on instagram maybe 6 months ago and kept toying with the idea of their product - well we jump on board after her most recent meltdown to help ease her frustrations and make doing her daily tasks enjoyable again - seriously, she loves her chores!

The whole concept is a zipper! Kind of like a sleeping bag, but better, and stylish! I was skeptical but it's a dream, so much ease and quality material and comfort and look don't go out the window. It's hilarious how happy she gets about making her bed every day now and shows everyone who comes over her "zipper bed". Total win! I seriously loooove products that make being a mom easier.






Let's break down a few things that have helped us make doing chores with toddlers successful!

Tweak items in the home to make their chores more on their level. Like we did with her bed, we've also switched locations of the dishes and utensils so she can easily empty the dishwasher or put her dishes in the sink for those. Whether it's adding a step stool somewhere so they can reach an item they need to grab for doing their chores, or leaving a pair of shoes out for them to throw on if they need to pick up toys outside - do it!

Create a chore chart!! Nothing got Emery more excited about a chore chart. It gives her the sense of accomplishment and she loves checking off the circles. It also helps me stay on track with doing them daily to make sure she's earning her "allowance". You can download the chore chart I made Emery and Drake, here.

Pick a prize or allowance each week they will be earning. We started out with a prize box where I stocked up on $1 and $1 items from Target and when she filled her chore chart for the entire week, she was able to pick something from the prize box. Now, we've opted for doing money because we're wanting her to learn the value of tithing, saving, and "play" money.


Make it fun! Play music, make chores part of the every day routine so it doesn't become a hassle or pulling teeth for doing them. I try to do my daily house duties right along with the three kids during their chore time so everyone has tasks going on and things to be checking off their lists.





The Ultimate Birthday Surprise!

August 10, 2018



I've been itching to get something realllly special going for our dude! He literally jumped into 7th grade 4 days ago and he will be turning 13 in a couple months and while we've always tailored his bedroom to be functional and classic - and boy - I feel like it's time to WOW him. A time to really make a statement and let him know how excited we are him journeying into his teen years and give him a space he's proud to call his.

Every time we've done any kind of updates throughout the house or when we move homes, he's been meticulous and so tuned in to all the details of each piece we use with decorating and it feels right designing a place all around him growing, developing, challenging, molding - into a young man!! Holy cow. I freaking blinked and he's 13!!

Do you remember when I came into his life at 4 years old through marriage? Four years old. I look back at pictures and can't even remember him being so small and baby-like. That's Emery's age in a couple months! I'm pumped to pull together this mood board of inspiration from Joss & Main creating a tailored, comfortable, and functional space for him!

He always has been vocal loving the black metal accents and blue we've used throughout our home so my goal is adding in the clean, simple lines while popping with warm tones. A fuzzy throw blanket, warm leather in a pouf and a bench and then of course, going overboard with throw pillows to make it that much more inviting. Add some industrial elements through the lamps for the nightstands and a statement piece of art and I can bet you he won't be leaving a space like this anytime soon.

So what do you think? Is it the ultimate 13th birthday surprise? I mean, we will totally be having a surprise birthday party, too, but this really start off the teen years with a bang! ;)

Haffey Queen Canopy Bed

This Canopy Bed //
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Castagnier 9 Drawer Dresser

This Dresser //
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Adelinda Metal and Leather Bench

This Bench //
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Castagnier 3 Drawer Night Stand

This Nightstand //
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Friedman Throw Pillow

This Pillow //
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Bessler 3 Piece Coverlet Set

This Bedding Set //
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Demers Indoor/Outdoor Lumbar Pillow

These Pillows //
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Abbottstown Faux Fur Throw

This Throw //
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Broadview Navy Area Rug

This Rug //
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Hub Accent Mirror

This Mirror //
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Carolos Pouf

This Pouf //
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Lennon 20.75

This Lamp //
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'Beautiful Buffalo' Photographic Print

This Print //
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Juli Industrial Single Curtain Bed & Hardware Set

This Curtain Rod //
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Script Title Design Cream Paper Decorative Book

This Decorative Book //
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Tobacco Wood 3 Piece Basket Set

This Set of Baskets //
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Ailis 30 Minute Timer Hour Glass

This Hour Glass //
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Olive Tree in Pot

This Faux Tree //
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Letter LED Marquee Sign

This Sign //
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Bull Skull Wall Decor

This Skull //
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Our Colorado Turnaround Trip

August 7, 2018


Grief is a funny thing. Andrew's grandpa went home to Jesus September 2017 and we said goodbye to him October 2017 with all the family, cousins, aunts, uncles... everyone. It was rough. I have a video on my phone from minutes after learning he passed of Emery in her Elsa costume and her asking "mommy, why are you crying? are you okay mommy?" and I wanted to remember her sweet soul and her sweet comments because she said over and over she loved me and asked if I needed a hug.

Their hearts are innocent and pure and GOLD. Solid freaking gold. In that moment it was comforting and familiar and gave me a good push to get through the days following coming to terms with not seeing grandpa again.

Fast forward to July 2018 and Andrew's grandma needed a favor from him. He loves finding cars, flipping cars, and making a business of it so when she needed to turn in the lease on her vehicle and buy a new one, Andrew was all over it. Take note, we're in Phoenix and she's in Golden, CO. Of course he found her the best deal and we planned to drive there 13 hours on a Thursday, get in around 7pm, spending Friday with family and fly home first thing Saturday morning.

It was a whirlwind. A good and healing whirlwind.

We stayed with his grandma and it was my first time being in that home. So much love and memories were there. SO MUCH was told through the things on the walls and collectibles they had throughout the home. It was like a big wave of grief all over again knowing he wasn't there to give us a big hug and share a donut and coffee. Such a weird experience coming to terms with that.

Being at peace with his passing was easy because we knew he was no longer in pain after suffering for so many years - he was with Jesus now. Whole and home.





Such a random post but it's always good to talk about what's happening in life and share our hearts.

xo

Our New Patio Space

August 3, 2018


Having a patio space or outside area in Arizona really can only be used during the months of October - April because it's a furnace so with Fall quickly approaching, we teamed up with At Home to create a whole new space, perfect for entertaining and welcome guests - and we're obsessed!!

If you know anything about Arizona homes, they're all stucco and all look very much the same and if you live in an HOA, you are nailed down to their color palette and elevation options on the outside of the house. That said, we moved into a spec home in August 2017 and didn't have a choice on those colors or selections and overall, it's a touch brown for my taste. I'm a cooler toned person and steer clear of the warmer options so I knew working with that on the patio, I needed to bring in some dark metals, wicker accents and overall, the pretty jute I have in nearly every room of our home.

We picked the Astoria collection from At Home and added in the details with a faux Fiddle Leaf Fig, basket hanging elements, jars in different sizes and our stenciled concrete flooring tied it all together.

It's been so nice peeking out the back door and seeing this serene and inviting space to relax in! We've braved it a few times with the warm weather but can't wait to really break it in come the fall!

all elements included in this post were purchased at At Home with the exception of the PEORIA pillow.






Thank you At Home for sponsoring this post!