Friday Favorites-Slow Down Summer

Happy Friday, friends! I hope you had a great week. It's been such a good one over here. I've been soaking in spending time with my boys and having all the summer fun. I've been focusing more on being intentional with my time with them and taking a step back from the distractions around me when needed. I love connecting with all of you, and appreciate you all that visit this little space of mine. I've been super slow at responding to comments but I promise I read them and appreciate them all so much. I will get caught up at some point because connecting with all of you is one of the best parts.

For now, I would not be doing my little ones justice if I didn't value this special time with them. It's such a catch 22 because we do a lot over the summer that I feel like I have so much extra content I want to share with all of you. And then there's that whole time factor, and not enough hours in a day, yeah, that always throws a monkey wrench into things. But I'm managing as best as I know how and just doing what I can. I did get a chance to share more about how our summer mornings have been starting. We also have C's baby dedication this weekend so I've been busy getting everything ready for that and look forward to sharing more. 

Let's take a look at some of my favorites...

Kicking Off The Camping Season: 

It was a lot of fun to take a long weekend and get our camping season underway. We went to one of  our favorite campgrounds and visited the sweetest place on earth. This has been a fun little tradition we started and can't wait for many more memories to come. We went with our friends that also have two little boys that are the same age as our guys. We were so excited to add to their first camping experience, and fishing, and show them a good time. They opted for cabin camping while we enjoyed our Airstream. We had so much fun visiting the park, enjoying campfires, eating all the smores, and washing off those little dirty feet at the end of the night. Baby C did an awesome job at camping and is already a little pro. You might have caught our family pic on my instagram and I could not stop cracking up once I realized what was going on here. A stranger took this pic for us and somehow mid click baby C decided that he was going to spit up. I mean, he kind of nailed it. What can I say, spit happens ;)

Insta Friends: 

It's been so much fun to get together with some of my local instagram friends and their little ones. Shayla (@Shayla_Mariie) has been so great at coordinating things and getting some of us together. It's always nice to have real friendships outside of social media and behind the screens. That's been one of the greatest things about this whole blogging and social media influencer community.

Sip and Swap: 

Speaking of get togethers, my sister had the CUTEST party this week. She did a sip and swap which was a bunch of us girls getting together to, well, sip, and also swap books. It was a great way to find some new reads and always nice to have a little time out. We were enjoying her beautiful backyard when all of the sudden a storm rolled in out of nowhere. I'm talking it looked like someone turned off the lights, the windy went crazy, and we all ran for cover. The books and drinks were saved.

Pool Time: 

The boys and I also got to enjoy some pool time. It's been crazy hot over here. Like heatwave status. We took full advantage of my Dad's pool to cool down. The boys were amazing and getting a lot more comfortable with the water and having the best time. C went down for a good nap so I got to have some much needed time with the big boys.

Favorite Finds: 

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I'm going to be honest, I was a bit overwhelmed with prime day, the nordstrom sale, and target having deal days all at the same time. Seriously, I did not have enough time to sift through all the sales and I turned off alerts on my phone because things actually got annoying. Every insta story I watched had nothing but swipe ups and it was just too much for me. I went at my own pace and didn't really need anything, ok, except for some outdoor rugs that I ended up being so tired and fell asleep with my phone in my hand and missed the sale the next morning I woke up. Womp, womp. 

I did snag a few things in general this week for the house and a few random things I've had my eye on. I found some great things on clearance racks at homegoods but of course no links for those. Let's take a look at the things I can share. I've been big into the natural wood look for accent pieces around my house. I feel like I am really embracing more of the modern farmhouse look and I am excited my living room is finally coming together. I found these coasters and love the gold accents in them. For some reason we never had a napkin holder (not really sure why) but this acacia one has made it so much easier to bring this outside when we have dinners outback, and, hold napkins. I do have my eye on these hunter boots and think that with our little Christmas tree patch, now might be the time to finally pull the trigger on a pair. For anyone that has them, do they fit true to size? 

We're hoping to go peach picking soon and what can I say, I couldn't resist this fun peachy tee. I've also heard so many great things about this striped romper that I finally hit purchase on it. It should be arriving today so I'm hoping it lives up to the hype. 

I hope everyone has a great weekend! 

Starting Our Mornings With FAGE Yogurt

This post is sponsored by FAGE; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

If there's one thing my whole family can agree on it's that we all love breakfast. It's that one meal of the day that we try to get started with before the to-do lists and all other activities are underway. It isn't always easy, because life happens, but those moments that we get to sit down together set the whole day in motion.

I would love to say that every morning is a lavish breakfast with all the fixings ready to go, but it's not. At least not during the week. Our typical mornings during the week tend to start off at a faster pace. It's making sure everyone has what they need for the day as we are getting ready for where we need to be.

That's why we love eating FAGE Total Plain Greek Yogurt. If your house is anything like mine, then you probably have some picky little ones that love something one week and then all of the sudden want nothing to do with it the next. Thankfully yogurt has always been a staple in our house and has never gone out of style.

So what do we do on those mornings where we need something quick but still want to have those family moments together? We put together some yogurt bowls. Not only are they quick and convenient, but I love that everyone can pick their own toppings (whatever they're feeling that week) to add to their yogurt. I feel better knowing we are enjoying protein-rich, delicious and satisfying, all natural yogurt. FAGE also comes in three different fat varieties to fit your lifestyle ranging from 5% whole milk to 0% non-fat.

Some of our favorite toppings we enjoy using have been fresh strawberries, blueberries, bananas, raspberries, granola, and if we're feeling a little sweet that morning we'll top it off with a little drizzle of honey. We recently got a new popsicle maker and the boys are so excited about it. They can't wait to make some delicious homemade yogurt pops over the summer and I feel better knowing exactly what's going into them.

Having this time in the morning to see the boys act silly, feel like they are big boys by helping to make their own breakfast, and knowing that they are getting a good start to the day makes me so happy. Sure they make plentyyy of messes, but those messes also come with sweet kisses and sticky smiles that somehow make it all worth it.

What are some of your favorite ways to spend time together in the mornings as a family?

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday, friends! I hope it's been a great week for you. This one seemed extra busy with follow up doctor's appointments and a dentist appointment for the big boys. I was so glad to hear that baby C's surgeon thinks he is healing so well. I am so thankful we don't have to do any additional taping or anything as of now. We have his full lip repair surgery scheduled for the end of summer and his palate surgery scheduled at the end of the year. This little guy is so strong and continues to amaze me everyday. 

Let's get into some favorites from this week...

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Picnic Night: 

this was the most random thing of the week but it ended up being my all time favorite. The boys were playing outside one night and came in the house to find me. Of course I was in the bathroom (never any privacy). They were standing there with a shopping bag full of snacks, and said they wanted to drive me on their quad to the end of the driveway to catch the sunset and have a picnic. I about melted. How sweet is that? Their bag was filled with gummies, crackers, and juice boxes, a well balanced meal for little ones.

Since we were getting ready to eat dinner I suggested that we take it with us and eat outside. They were so excited and it ended up being perfect. After dinner they ran around and caught lightning bugs and came back with dirty little toes. I also think I found my new favorite spot to take pictures of the baby. The sky was amazing and peaks at a certain point that I happened to catch him in all of his messy drool, and I loved every minute of it. I think we need to make this a weekly thing now.

4th of July Fun: 

in case you missed it, I recapped our adventures from our extra long 4th of July weekend. I think we all need more long weekends in our life. I always come off of them so much more refreshed and relaxed.

New Front Door and Entryway Transformation: 

i always knew I wanted to switch out our front door and have something that would give it a different feel. I could not be happier with the one we went with. You can head to my statement entryway post to see some of the before pictures and more of our inside. A lot of you asked about some of our products we bought so I am linking them here. Our chandelier was a must for me and as soon as I saw it I knew it would look great in our entryway. Because of the size, it was on the pricer side, but they do have similar ones in smaller sizes if you're consider this look. These lanterns were perfect for our outside lights and they also come in different sizes.

Airstream Adventures: 

we officially kicked off the camping season this week. We are so excited to have the Airstream back out on the road and this time around baby C get's to come on the adventures. It seemed like everything that could have gone wrong the morning we were leaving did. Nothing really with the Airstream, just life in general. But regardless, things happen. All I know is the next time we're planning on camping we will not be having any Drs appointments that morning. Because no matter how early you make the appointment, that one day you need to be somewhere it's the most backuped, ever. Anyway, we made it and are having a great time. It's nothing a little fishing and smores fun can't fix.

Favorite Finds:

i mentioned before that tops seem to be the least thing I have over here and I really needed some new ones this season. Not to mention there are some days where I need to change multiple times if baby C decides to add a little style to my outfit with some extra spit up (fun times). I came across a sale and really like the fit and quality of these tees (currently an extra 20% off the already marked down price with code Extra20).

Ok, real talk here. I used to rock short shorts back in the day but have tried to retire them now that I have the boys. Well, all of my shorts were in the wash the other day. At least the handful that I have that I feel comfortable with the length. So what did I do, I broke out the old booty shorts since I had nothing else to wear, and man did the boys notice. I could not change them quick enough. I opted for jeans instead, haha. Well wouldn't you know, I went searching online for new shorts that were a more appropriate length, and guess what? There aren't a lot of them out there. At least that I could find, and didn't look silly. I came across these high rise button front shorts and love them! They're on a major sale but selling out fast in most sizes. I got this front tie shirt in light gray and it came out to only $4! Now that's my kind of shopping.

Nothing like waiting last minute to realize you need to find sleeping arrangements for your baby (third child problems) while you're camping. Our goal is to eventually put bunkbeds in but that probably won't happen for a little while and he's no where near sleeping on them. This Graco travel lite pack n play is perfectttt. He has the room he needs but it's not big and bulky and is super easy to travel with. 

I hope everyone has a great weekend! 

Creating a Statement Entryway

I've always been a big admirer of beautiful statement front doors. There's something about pulling up to a home that has an eye-catching door that sets the tone for the whole house. 

This post is in collaboration with Doors4Home. All thoughts and opinions remain my own. 

One of the things that drew us to this house was the amazing wrap around porch. I envisioned myself sitting out here rocking my babies while catching the sunset. I feel incredibly blessed that I now get to live that out. There was one thing that I had a hard time getting past, the front door. There was a bright red door that I was never in love with. The house also has hunter green shutters and it just screamed Christmas to me. I knew changing out the front door was high on my priority list. I didn't want just any old door, though. I knew if we were going to make the investment, we were going to do it right. After searching around for some ideas, I knew that a double door, and particularly one with an arched look, would be perfect there. We were fortunate to have enough space to make it work and were excited to start the transformation with the front of our home.

I have always loved the look of a wood door and the timeless feel it creates. Having a solid wood door was important to us to give us the transformation we were hoping for.

Because we wanted a few particular things with our front door, like solid wood, a double door, and an arched look, we knew we couldn't just walk into any store and pick one off the shelves. That's where Doors4Home came into play. I cannot say enough good things about them and how easy they made this whole process. They have so many beautiful doors to choose from that fit your style and needs. They are also easily accessible and you can call with any questions or concerns. I loved that. We had several questions before placing our order and wanted to make sure we had everything right. We didn't have to wait on hold for hours on end and push a ton of buttons just to get ahold of someone. They ship doors all over the country and your door is custom made to your specifications. You also have 2 business days to make any changes in writing if need be. It really felt like personalized service which was a huge selling point for me.

After several weeks of production, our door was delivered and we were so excited to get it installed. We went with an arch top mahogany wood door in the finish of chappo. It was amazing to see the transformation take place right before our eyes. It motivated us even more to finish up some projects on the front porch and get it to an area that we really enjoy. We eventually want to transform the entire outside of our house (the door will be staying) but that will come with time.

For now, some new plants, furniture for our porch, and an entryway doormat, give it a little something extra on the outside. It's fun to sit out here and watch the boys play or have them rock in our chairs right along side of us. Little nugget also likes to sneak off and ring the doorbell when he can because he thinks it's just the funniest thing.

The inside also took on a major transformation and this door was the finishing piece to bring it all together. I know it might sound silly, but sometimes I catch myself peering over the railing from my upstairs and admiring it all.

This door lets in amazing light along with giving it a grand feel. When you walk in I have a small bench seat to the one side with a statement clock above it. That clock was Eric's grandfather's that he held onto. I love that we have it hanging there and that it holds a special sentiment.

If you watch my insta stories often you'll see that I share some projects and more personal peeks into our space. Some have commented that they love my style but that it's hard to classify. I would have to agree. I feel that styles constantly change but those staple pieces should be your anchor. Paint colors and accent decor can always be switched out. Things like a front door, or picking your flooring and backsplash, are more longterm commitments. I think if I had to narrow my style into categories, it would be safe to say it's a mix of modern farmhouse with a bit of glam. It's a little all over the place, but it works for us, and I think that's what matters. Being happy with your own home and confident with your design choices is so important.

Let's get back into talking about the entryway. When you come through the door and make your way down the hall, I also have a small table with some pictures and a mirror hanging above it. I got this mirror on a clearance rack and the color was originally grayish. I spray painted it black and I think it picks up the spindles from our railings really well. We also have a framed picture going down the hallway and leading into the kitchen. Eric found it in the trash outside of an estate sale (that's another story) and much to our surprise it was an original etched piece of art that we deiced to hang (see what I did there) onto and have it framed.

In all of my other houses there were always secondary doors that we used more than our main front door. This time around it's nice to have a dedicated entryway that creates the whole feel for our home. It's the main pass through. It's a place where you can walk into to create memories. Where new adventures are made.  And where we navigate the ins and outs of life.

What about you, what's something you love about your entryway or something that you would change?

4th of July Recap

Ahhh, can we all give it up for extra long weekends!! I am especially thankful that I was able to celebrate this special time with the boys and not have to worry about working on a Friday. It's so hard when holidays fall during the week and there's that awkward day that throws a monkey wrench into things.  You would think that being home with them this summer would give me a different outlook about the weekends, but if anything, it makes me appreciate them more. 

Let's rewind for a minute and get into this whole recap about our red, white, and blue celebrating. We packed up our things and headed to the beach on Wednesday night so we could be there first thing on Thursday to hit the beach and kick off the celebrating.

It turned out to be the most beautiful beach day and seriously everything about it was perfect. The water was so warm you could just walk right in, there was a light breeze coming off the ocean, the water was beautiful and so clear (and people want to knock the jersey shore), and the boys had the best time playing on the sandbar with us.

We soaked in every moment of it and spent the whole day the there. We packed sandwiches, lots of water, and all the snacks. You can never have too many snacks, right?! And treated the boys to some popsicles on the beach. Umm they lasted all of about one minute before all the messy melting took place. Good thing the ocean is right there to rinse off in.

After getting changed and grabbing dinner we made our way back down to the beach to catch the fireworks. We brought sparklers for the boys but it was too windy to light them, so we promised them we would do them another day. I'm a firm believer in 4th of July needing to be an all weekend celebration. I didn't capture any pics of the fireworks because baby C started to have a meltdown. It wasn't because of the fireworks, he did stop for awhile and was smiling when he saw them, but I think he was just overly tired and completely over it. Eric went back with him early and I stayed with A and little nugget to watch the grand finale. I did get a picture of him with his sparkler once we got them lit.

The next day we woke up to some overcast skies and decided to go crabbing on the dock of the bay. I could not even with baby C in his little captains hat grabbing onto the ropes of the crab traps. He is just too cute and melts my heart over and over again. We only caught a few and most of them were small and not big enough to keep. We heard it's been an odd season and not many people have been having much luck. A was determined to catch more and probably would have stayed on the dock the whole rest of the weekend. When that boy has his mind set on something there's no stopping him. He saw a larger crab crawling up one of the posts to the dock and got Eric to lean over with the net and catch him. It ended up being the biggest one that we got.

We kept it low-key that day and the boys had some special time with their grandparents up at the boardwalk playing games and winning prizes while Eric and I did some shopping and had some special time with baby C. 

Later on that night we made our way back down near the bay to catch the sunset and let the boys play on the playground. I couldn't resist snapping some pictures of the three of them together. They are seriously my everything.

A sweet stranger saw me taking some pictures and told me that she knows how to work the type of camera that I had. She offered to take pictures of Eric and I with the baby and also grabbed a quick family pic. She said you can't pass up these moments with them, especially when it's the baby's first 4th of July. She's right. Pictures are my favorite (if you can't tell) and so special to be able to look back on.

The sunset ended up being so pretty and it was the perfect way to end the day.

The next day we woke up and were back on the beach bright and early. The boys were hoping there would be another sandbar but the waves were actually pretty rough. A and I went into the water once. He was on my back, and as soon as we got past the wave breaks, it dropped off and was too deep for me to be able to manage with him. We decided to go for a walk instead and walked up and down the shore line. We looked for shells and the boys enjoyed finding "treasures", not sure an old bottle cap counts as that, but it made them happy.

Sure enough, a storm did roll in behind us and we packed up our things once we heard thunder off in the distance. It ended up pouring the rest of the afternoon and we made it back to the house just in time. The boys started to get a little antsy, and after watching two movies and not having any luck with anyone napping, we decided to head back home. The weather was originally calling for rain all Sunday, and with a forecast like that, and knowing we had other things at home we could tackle, we felt going back was best. Welll, wouldn't you know Sunday ended up being another nice day so we could have stayed. Yeah, last time I listen to the weather forecast.

It wasn't anything lost though. We got to go to church and went over my sisters afterwards and let the boys take a dip in her kiddie pool. When we told the boys that morning we were going, it was so cute to hear little nugget thinking his aunt now had a bunch of "kitties" that she was putting in a pool. The mind of a three year old is so precious.

I hope everyone had a great long weekend! Now let's all hope the summer slows down a bit and we don't blink and find ourselves at Labor Day weekend. 
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