Monday, February 1, 2016

8 Cold Weather Essentials for Your Tot

Well, we've survived our first big blizzard of 2016. If there is anything I have learned as a parent who has seen six snowy winters with small humans it's that the secret to their (and therefore your) happiness is: 

  • OVERALL WARMTH
  • DRY FEET AND HANDS and 
  • PLENTY OF WINE FOR AFTER BEDTIME. 

Therefore, I've gone ahead and compiled a short list for you of some cold weather essentials we wouldn't be able to survive a winter without. I promise you, some of these might even pacify the pickiest of kids who refuse to put on torturous things like gloves and/or boots.

God speed my parents friends- remember, with each snow day that passes, you're one day closer to Spring. At least that's what I've been chanting to myself since last Friday... 




StrideRite Made2Play Sneaker Boot: If there is anything more difficult to squeeze your toddler into than gloves, it's boots. I don't know what it is about boots but my kids are incapable of shoving their foot all the way down on the first, second and third tries. These Made2Play Sneaker boots by StrideRite eliminate the hassle of shoving your child's foot into a clunky, heavy boot by bringing together a flexible lightweight sneaker and seam-sealed, fleece-lined upper designed to keep warmth in and water out. What's even better is that these "snoots" are so flexible they can easily be folded up and tossed into any bag for on--the-go fun. Available in many colors and even a couple of fun character prints, be sure to head to StrideRite to learn more about them. 

Kid's Snow Bib: If I learned anything at all from six winters as a parent, it's that snow bibs are greater than snow pants in all of the ways. Okay, maybe not so ideal when someone inevitably shouts, "I have to go potty!" but the less ways for snow to creep into someone's pants, the better. We love these snow bibs but the truth is, any snow bib will do whether it's a $70 Columbia brand suit or $15 suit from OshKosh. We've tried them all, trust me. 

SnowStoppers Waterproof Mittens: Hands down, no pun intended, these are the greatest waterproof mittens ever invented for kids. The best part about them is the extra fabric sleeve that reaches nearly to their elbows, making sure snow stays out and warmth stays in. I tell all of my mom friends that their kids need these mittens, that's how much I love them. Plus you don't have to scream at your child, "EVERY FINGER HAS A HOME" when putting them on because they're mittens and not stupid motherf*&^%ing gloves. (no? just me?)


Kid's Merino Ski Socks: One surefire way to ruin any fun snow day is wet feet. We've found that merino ski socks are the best at keeping little feet warm and dry and do you know what little warm and dry feet like to do? Not come inside three and a half minutes after they walked outside. Winner winner, chicken dinner. 

Lucky Bums Plastic Torpedo Sled: Lightweight and easy enough FOR THEM to drag back up the hill once a pull string is attached. Need I say more? 

The Ultimate Ideal Multiple Snowball Maker: We love it. I mean, my kids love it. Although I can't say who has used it more- my husband and I or the kids themselves. It's great for the ones who just can't quite perfect the art of snowball making on their own just yet. Gives them a bit of an advantage ;)


Original Turtle Fur Fleece Head/Neck Shell: Whether they're throwing snow, rolling in it or making snow angels, snow inevitably finds it way down the backs of my kids jackets and the minute it hits their warm chubby necks, you'd think they were melting in a pit of molten lava. Toddler scarves? Forget it. Turtle Fur is the way to go. It might look like we're headed out on an Alaskan Frontier adventure when my boys leave the house for snow play but one thing is for sure, once they're dressed they stay warm AND dry the entire time they're out there. This is a must-have. 


Monogram Knit Hat: Of course your child doesn't need a monogrammed knit hat for the winter months but this hat from Bridier Baubles The Monogram Shop is one of my absolute favorite winter pieces. The best part is that it starts getting use during the chilly Fall months and keeps our tiniest head warm clear through the winter ones. 





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Friday, January 29, 2016

Adventure Awaits: Baby Boy's Nursery (Reveal)



I seem to have this habit of finishing our babies' nurseries shortly after their first birthday. While in my mind I'm all "it needs to be done before he's born" the reality is that isn't until they're nearing their first birthdays (or in some case 18 month birthdays) that it all comes together and I can sit back and cross it off the perpetual "room refresh list."  

As soon as I found out I was pregnant with our first little boy back in 2009, I knew I wanted to create a vintage Peter Rabbit nursery for him (uber preppy, might I add) and when our second son was born in 2012, I took his nursery plans in a completely different direction with a neutral gray palette with bright pops of bold patterns and color. 

Since we'd be using the same nursery furniture that we used for our first baby for our third baby and the same nursery space for the third baby as the second baby, I ultimately decided to stick with the gray walls and follow it up with a predominantly neutral nursery with black/gray patterned accents. I also wanted to incorporate the ever-trendy adventure theme without going too overboard. 

It all started with that amazing moose bust from Etsy shop NearAndDeer. As soon as I stumbled on their Etsy shop of custom faux taxidermy animals, I knew I needed that insanely awesome moose bust as the focal point of the room. While I had a hard time deciding whether to use fabric or paint on his antlers, ultimately I went with gold paint, trying to maintain that neutral woodland vibe. They were so excellent to work with and I cannot wait to use them again for a nautical piece in our Big Brothers Shared Space.  




While there are some things I wish I could change about this room (swap out the old recliner for a more streamlined grey version, replace the beige carpet with something more textured, add wainscoting to the walls... the list goes on...) the reality is we won't be in this house a whole lot longer and Collins will soon be transitioning to a big boy room without need of a change table and rocker so it didn't make much sense to make any big changes to the space.

I've rocked three babies in that chair and I'm so grateful for every single one of those moments. Three babies have laid their chubby little cheeks to sleep in that crib and it makes my breath catch in my throat when I think about disassembling it for the last time. 

I love this space so, so much and watching it come together turned out even better than I expected. Although it's the tiniest of the four bedrooms in our home, it's hands down one of my favorite spaces and definitely filled with so much love. It's so tiny, in fact, that I had to take the pictures with my cell phone instead of my camera!










Grey Wall Paint: Behr Premium Ultra in Porpoise (790-E3)
Crib: Davinci via Great Beginnings
Changing Table: Davinci Rowan Changing Table   Espresso  
Swivel Rocker: Best Chairs, "Mandy" from the Storytime Series

Crib Sheet: Trend Lab Crib Sheet Buffalo Check  
Grey Pouf: One Kings Lane
Framed Wall Art: Etsy
Lighting: Home Depot, Outdoor Lighting (Similar)

Wire Baskets: Magnolia Market
Moose Bust: NearAndDeer
Pennant Banner: Hobby Lobby
Wall Hooks: Land of Nod 

Arrow String Art: Etsy
Gold Bull/Stuffed Bear: Target (Recent)
Yarn Monogram: Handmade gift
Fabric Mobile: Handmade gift

Chalkboard: Hobby Lobby
Curtains: Land of Nod
Mustard Striped Canvas Bins: Target (Recent)
Rug: Homespun Chevron Rug


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Monday, January 25, 2016

Easy Valentine's Day Kid's Craft: Celery Stamping

We're back again and celebrating good ol' heart day with another fantastic blog loop that showcases everything from Valentine's dessert ideas to gift ideas for your best girlfriend, free printables and beyond. Be sure to read through to the end of this post, meet the other wonderful blogging ladies who are sharing their wildly wonderful talents and to enter for the chance to win a $25 Starbucks gift card- Why? because crafting with your kids is surely made better by strong coffee. 
Once I knew we'd be spending a long weekend snowed in as a family of five, it was time to start getting creative with boredom busting activities. I had already factored several board games and new toys into our usual routine (desperate times call for desperate measures) but I also knew that the time spent together would provide ample time to start working on some Valentine's Day themed arts + crafts that my oldest could incorporate into the Valentines he would be passing out in his classroom. 

The celery stamping craft we did was just as fun as it was easy. After first seeing it here, it required very little preparation and after digging through the fridge I realized we had everything on hand to get started. My three year old LOVED this craft the most as he was extra excited about using "celery butts" as paint stampers. 

While his art will hang in our house during the month of February, my oldest will be attaching a pack of seeds to his creations and presenting them to his teachers as their special Valentines. 


What You'll Need: 

- Paint (Acrylic or Washable, I found that acrylic adhered to the celery better and didn't become watered down as we went along)
- The sliced-off bottom end of a bunch of celery
- Card stock 
- Markers, washi tape or any other fun addition that you think might jazz up your painting! I contemplated stirring a little glitter into our paints but it's during times like these when my mother's voice "less is more" echoes through the back of my mind.

The What You'll Do is rather self explanatory. Just stamp and go as you please! Once your child is done with his or her stamping, go ahead and draw in your stems and a bow to bring the bouquet together! Finish it off with a washi tape border and voila! A beautiful celery stamp Valentine. 

Dipping his "celery butt" into the paint

For such a wildly spirited boy, he's serious about his crafts!

Stopping mid-stamp for a snack- crafting makes you hungry!



Perfecting his art- less wiggle and more concentrated pressing

Before adding the final touches!
Now, be sure to hop around to see what other wonderfully amazing things these pretty ladies are whipping up for Valentine's Day and then enter to win a $25 Starbucks gift card!




What To Wear | Molly at Stilettos and Diapers

Date Night Outfit | Ashley at Fancy Ashley
Women's Gift Guide | Heather at My Life Well Loved
Men's Gift Guide | Chelsea at Two Twenty One
DIY Gift Idea for Bestie | Thuy at Hey Thuy
Kids Gift Idea for Classmates | Sandy at Sandy a la Mode
Kids Craft | Ashley at I Love You More Than Carrots
Kids Printable | Kristin at Taz + Belly
Kids Printable | Jennifer at Life in the Green House
Free Printable | Andrea at Momfessionals
Decor Tips | Taryn at Design, Dining & Diapers 
Dessert | Destiny at Just Destiny Mag
Dessert | Erika at A Little Bit Of Everything




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