Jun 24, 2013

Vacation Snaps

Happy Monday and hope everyone had a great weekend!  We are on week number two of vacation (winding down.) 

Have a wonderful week!

Jun 21, 2013

5 on Friday

Happy Friday everyone! Today I'm linking up for...

1.  Vaseline Spray Lotion

This lotion is so lightweight, easy to use and smells delicious!  I have been using it on myself and the kiddos on vacation and I am hooked!  This is super easy to use on wriggly little people!

2. The beach at night
I literally cannot get enough of the beach at night on this vacation.  Summer is perfection!

3.  Cornhole
Who doesn't love cornhole?  I think my kids have discovered a love for it after a few years spent walking past the same game every time we are in Captiva.  They are addicted now and I think it is so fun to watch them try to figure it out and play!  As long as they don't have a drink in hand...

4.  JCrew Bathing Suits
I brought both of these suits with me and I love them both.  I feel skinnier in both of them and that, to me, is worth all the money in the world for a bathing suit!

5.  Lentil Chips
These are my new favorite gluten-free snack.  They are DELICIOUS! Buy them, you won't regret it I promise!

Have a fabulous weekend!

Jun 20, 2013

Flying with Kids

Today let's talk about something random, yet something that affects us all at some point in our lives... traveling with children.  After a couple of quick train rides on Sunday with my little people...

I thought I would share what I have learned over the years and countless flights.  Even if you don't have children, being stuck on an airplane/train etc. with them affects you.  It affects us all!  To avoid having a miserable trip I advise you invest in some great noise canceling headphones.  And perhaps a travel size bottle of children's Benadryl in case you need to offer some to parents of loud and obnoxious children, or, you know, yourself.  For those of us with the potentially loud offenders...

What to Pack
- It is important to pack light.  With kids, there is a tendency to bring one or two of everything in the house. Why? Because if you don't have it, you will need it!  Here is my carry-on packing list for a potty-trained toddler:
* iPad in a sturdy/easy to carry case (we prefer the iGuy)
* One coloring book with a few sheets of plain paper inside
* A very small cosmetics bag filled with crayons and stickers
* Small pillow and blanket (the pillow is her lovie so we HAVE to have it.)
* Dry snacks (goldfish, crackers, fruit snacks)
* One sippy cup

Here is what I pack for a baby:
* 5-10 diapers depending on length of flight/layovers
* Small baby powder (diaper cream has to go in a plastic bag with liquids, too much of a hassle.)
* 2 pacifiers (if using them)
* 1-2 bottles/sippy cups FILLED
* 1 outfit change
* A few small toys
*Stuffed animal or silkie
*Ergo or Baby Bjorn

*Fly during sleep time i.e. red eyes, nap time flights, super early am flights
*Give babies and kids a bottle or sippy cup during take off or landing to help pop their ears
*Wearing your baby will take a HUGE load off of your arms and legs, especially if they are asleep
*Crayons and puke bags are great for making puppets and occupying time when electronics can't be used
*Invest in quality headphones made specifically for children

These are my own personal tips, some of which I learned from our old pediatrician in Los Angeles (love and miss her.)  They may not work for everyone but after carting Avery on over 40 cross country flights before age three and surviving several flights with Greyson I am thinking they help!  I know I don't want to hear a crying child on a long flight, and I know how stressful it is to be the parent with the cranky children so I always try to be understanding of what people are going through on either end.

Please share any and all tips you have!

Jun 19, 2013

Easiest Taco Salad Ever

There are nights where it takes me so much (SO MUCH) effort to make dinner.  I try to refrain from eating out because I know that I will make bad food choices and not eat nearly as clean as I could at home.  This taco salad is absurdly easy and something I always have ingredients on hand for.  I rotate what I put in it based on whether or not we have shrimp, left over chicken, beans, etc. etc.  This one was made with shrimp (which you can't see) that we sauteed in a small bit of olive oil for five minutes.

{ Ingredients }
* Bagged coleslaw mix (found in the salad aisle)
* Tomatoes
* Low fat shredded, blended cheese (I use the Trader Joe's Mexican blend)
* Onions
* Shrimp, chicken, or beans
* Lime Juice
* Salt and pepper
* Sriracha

{ Directions }
* Cook shrimp, chicken, beans, etc. to taste
* Layer one handful of coleslaw mix on bottom 
* Top with meat, cheese, tomatoes, onions, and any other veggies
* Season with lime juice and a few squeezes of Sriracha

Sometimes the best things are the simplest IMHO!

Jun 18, 2013

Everyday Makeup

I love makeup. You all know this.  However, I rarely have time to do "the works."  Most days I am lucky to get time to put on my bare minimum and I have mastered the art of applying makeup while holding a child in one arm.  In lieu of that, here is my go-to, bare basics, daily routine!

clockwise from top left

Run, don't walk to get your hands on this mascara! It is the most amazing stuff I have put on my lashes! It makes them grow and makes them look so full.  I never buy expensive mascara, but this is a game changer!  


Jun 17, 2013


Happy Monday!  We arrived in Captiva yesterday and will be vacay-ing for the next two weeks!  We had a super busy weekend which I have to get caught up on! 

How we spent our morning.... rough life right?

Jun 13, 2013

Thursday Randoms

Let's talk about yesterday, k?  Avery had her first dance recital rehearsal.  How did she get so old?!  I have to share these pictures now because we aren't allowed to take photos during the actual recital (hiss).  My little monkey is so grown up and she did SUCH a great job on the stage!

I followed that up with some apps and bevies in the city with girlfriends.
It was a pretty great day.  

I have also been eating this snack this week like it is my job:
White Cheddar Rice Cake
One garlic Laughing Cow spreadable
Light, organic turkey breast
Looks odd, tastes great and keeps me full!


Jun 12, 2013

Around the House

We have made a serious dent in getting our house "together" in the last couple of weeks, especially in our living room.  Other than a couple of pictures on the walls and our bar area, I would call this room finished.  After a year and a half I guess you could call that progress?  Here is some of what has been changed...

I found this mirror at HomeGoods and it is perfect over our couch on our enormous wall.  We might add a second one underneath.  Thoughts?

I love these bows in our hall way.  However, almost everything in our house is silver or bronze.  I'm wondering if I should paint them to make them blend better.  I bought bronze spray paint so we shall see if I do that or not...

This organizer was an awesome Ikea find.  It currently holds all of Avery's Barbies, doll clothes and doll furniture.  I am thinking a few more of these with some pictures on them would be great for super organizing the play room.  This is the wall between our current play room and our living room for reference.  

I got this boat bookshelf when we were visiting my sister-in-law at Hobby Lobby and I love it!  Such a fun little inexpensive piece that brightens up this whole corner of our living room.  Clearly, we have a nautical theme going on here.  I also love the finish and am thinking about trying to find a stain simliar to this for my next furniture re-do project.  Please share your feedback, I love it!


Jun 11, 2013

Gluten Free Butternut Squash Pasta

It's time to share what has become a staple in our dinner routine lately!  Since going largely gluten-free, we have struggled with replacing our old meals. I found this recipe on the always amazing Skinnytaste and adapted based on our tastes to this listed below.  Finding a good gluten-free pasta is KEY.  I used brown rice pasta because it had less ingredients than the straight up gluten-free kind.

{ Ingredients }
* One package pre-cubed butternut squash (I used a bag of frozen from Whole Foods)
* Gluten free pasta of choice
* Olive oil
* 3 cloves garlic minced
* 1/3 cup shredded parmesan
* 1/4 teaspoon sage
* Salt and pepper to taste
* Pancetta

{ Directions }
* Boil squash in salted water until soft (about 10 minutes)
* Cook pasta according to instructions
* Saute garlic in about 1 tablespoon of olive oil until lightly browned and soft, about five minutes then add in pancetta to warm and brown for a few minutes (not too long!)
* Drain squash and pasta, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water
* Puree squash in a blender until smooth
* Add squash to garlic and pancetta pan and stir about two minutes.  Add sage, salt and pepper and parmesan, stir and remove from heat.
* Add sauce to pasta and toss


Jun 10, 2013

Weekend Snaps

Happy Monday dolls!  I hope you all had a great weekend! We had a very low-key one and it was just what we needed with a LOT of busy, out of town weekends coming up!  

My kiddos played hard!

Avery brought home some fresh baked challah she made. Yum!

Greyson figured out how to climb onto the train table...

We braved the rain...

We ate a LOT!

Painted nails...

I squeezed in two good workouts (to negate all that eating!)

We finished with a little Sunday evening fro-yo.  It was just what we all needed!

Have a great week!

Hey Lauren Rene
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