Monday, October 9, 2017

What To Do With All Those Apples You Picked + Halloween T's Your Kids Can Wear All Month Long!

When my first son was born I went crazy buying up all of the adorable holiday-themed kids clothes, as if 10 different shirts for a single holiday was necessary. I quickly learned what a waste of money that was as I refused to put my child in the clothes on any day of the month other than the ones surrounding the actual holiday.

With my second and third sons, not only did I have a fantastic selection of hand-me-downs to choose from but also, I wised up. I began only investing in holiday-wear that wasn't overtly holiday-ish and could be worn all month long.

That's one of the reasons I love Mini Boden's spirited line of kid's wear this Halloween season. The t-shirts are uniquely festive without being acutely Halloween-y, meaning everything isn't shockingly orange and black. This makes it ultra easy to incorporate these tees into your kid's wardrobe all month long, not just around the holiday! 

We recently took the boys apple picking and they had a blast running through the apple orchards with ease, unimpeded by stiff, starchy clothing. Mini Boden makes it easy to get into the spooky Halloween spirit with their glow-in-the-dark T-shirts for little boys, not to mention that creeping's never been more comfortable when everything is 100% cotton. The bright bold colors and ability to mix-and-match just about all of their pieces makes this line of clothes one of our favorites. 




In case you thought it was actually easy taking pictures with my mini man crew, take a look at Maclane's face in the below photo. His face is essentially how I felt trying to get the boys to all stand in a straight line and smile for "just one nice picture with mommy." 

In the next photo, Collins is one "don't make me count to five" away from turning into a rag doll. Thankfully, we were all able to pull it together for the unicorn of photos, one with everyone looking and smiling, less like little serial killers and more like sweet little boys, right at the camera. 

So, what is one to do with approximately 47lbs. of apples picked fresh from the farm? Aside from feeding one to every child at just about every meal, we decided to whip up one of our favorite after-dinner treats, mini apple crisps with whipping cream! While half of this recipe comes straight from a box, don't let it's corner-cutting fool you! 

What this dessert lacks in preparation, it makes up for in Fall-y deliciousness. The recipe can be found on the back of the box and it's as easy as 1-2-3! All you need is the topping mix, 4 medium-sized apples and 5 tablespoons of butter.

Many thanks to Boden for providing us with these pieces to fancy 
up our festive Halloween wardrobe! No additional compensation was received 
for this post, all thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and my own.

A few of our friends are sharing some frightfully good fun on their blogs along with more Mini Boden Halloween styles. The Chirping Moms have Spooky Ghosts made from paper plates and toilet paper plus easy costume ideas. 

Head to The Southern Mama Guide for Non Candy Treat Bags for Preschoolers. 

You must see how The Love Designed Life has created Goldilocks and the Three Bears costumes. 

For more cute costumes, see what Hello Baby Brown created. 

If you loved the Mini Boden Halloween pajamas, be sure to check out Momfessionals Sweet and Spooky Halloween book suggestions to read at bedtime this Halloween season. 

Trick or treat!

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Moms Do Fall Fashion :: The (Affordable) Duster Cardigan

You may remember last year's Moms Do Fall Fashion collaboration where I teamed up with several fun and fashionable mamas to share how I styled one of my favorite Fall wardrobe staples, the plaid shirt. While you can't get much more basic than a puffer vest and plaid flannel shirt, versatility and comfort win out over any worry of blending into the crowd.

It was such a popular collaboration that I'm back this year sharing my love for one of my newest and most recent additions to my Fall closet, the duster cardigan! Nothing screams "Fall!" to me more than layering up with a cozy cardigan sweater and what better way to give my old, traditional cardigans a break than trying out the duster length! 

When choosing a duster cardigan, it's a good idea to stick with a neutral color over any desire for a fun print or pattern. Variations of gray, cream and blush are great starter colors and will wear well with a variety of color palettes and prints. The added length of a duster cardigan is supposed to give a much more elongated appearance so it's best worn over pieces that aren't too bulky and with a shoe or boot with a slight heel.

I love that this cardigan serves as a great transition piece during the weeks when the weather here in Maryland vacillates between straggly sweltering summer temperatures and the cooler, crisp mornings of the -ber months. I picked this particular duster up from Nordstrom rack for under $35 and I can't wait to style it differently in the coming months! It does run a bit big so make sure and size down if necessary. For reference, I'm 5'7" and wearing a size small.  

See? My boys don't always cooperate for pictures! Bribery is always involved.
I'm still learning how to wear this look and I think going forward I'll be wearing this cardigan with a skinnier, more form-fitting pant leg so as not to create the overwhelming, bulky look that I notice in some of these pictures. I love, love, love the black, raw hem destroyed FRAME denim I'm wearing in this outfit but decidedly, they may not be the best silhouette for this length sweater. 

As I mentioned earlier, with a duster cardigan you're trying to achieve a more dazzling coat-igan, less bathrobe-in-the-wild appearance and admittedly, I'm still working on that! 

And while I ditched the duster an hour into our apple picking excursion last weekend, I just love this picture of me and my mini man crew and had to share it here:  

So, what do you think of the duster cardi trend? Tried it? Hate it? I’d love to see how you're working the lengthened sweater look in every day living! Leave a link to your photo in the comments here or over on my Facebook page! 

Lastly, I’ve also teamed up with the girls of Take Time for Style, as part of their Moms Do Fall Fashion collaboration to give away a $150 Nordstrom Gift Card. Head on over to their site for more fall fashion ideas & enter to win!

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Monday, October 2, 2017

It’s Fall Ya’ll: Baking Homemade Apple Hand Pies and Brown Sugar Peach Cobbler

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Luck’s.

I almost can’t believe that it’s the beginning of Fall. Fall has always been my favorite season. There’s something magical about the crispness of the air, the crunchiness of the leaves underfoot and the slowness with which summer seems to melt away. From my cozy Fall wardrobe to bundling up on the front porch beneath a blanket, sipping hot apple cider, watching the leaves turn, Fall feels like a breath of fresh air after a sweltering, sweaty summer.

Here in Maryland Mother Nature hasn’t quite gotten the memo yet. With temperatures hanging tough in the high 80’s, there isn’t much Fall to be felt just yet. Until the temperature dips and the colors start to fade, however, I plan to find other ways to usher in the warmth heady aromas of my favorite season.

When I think about filling my house with Fall-y goodness, my mind immediately turns to cobblers, crisps and pies. Be it apple, peach or pumpkin, rarely can you go wrong and with new neighbors moving in right next door as I write this, I figure what better time to head to the kitchen and bake up a warm, Fall-inspired welcome.

What I appreciate most about the following two recipes is that they revolve around canned fruit, an easy and convenient way to make delicious-tasting meals and desserts. Canned fruit has the added benefit of ease of prep without having to spend heaps of time peeling and slicing. With 3 little boys around, I’ll cut as many corners as I can if it means faster food without sacrificing taste! These Fried Apples and Peaches from Luck’s are a pantry staple in our home and luckily, neither of these recipes are labor-intensive! With culinary roots in the South, Luck’s brings that signature southern taste to every dish it meets.

Welcoming new neighbors with the warm comfort of these Homemade Spiced Apple Hand Pies is one of the warmest welcomes you could ever bless someone with. With canned biscuit dough as their shell, these hand pies are super easy to make from start to finish. For a special Southern twist, sub Luck’s Peaches in with an extra pinch of cinnamon sugar for Southern Peach Hand Pies instead of the apples.

This Brown Sugar Peach Cobbler is amazing for a myriad of reasons, number one being that it can pull double duty not only as a dessert but also the perfect companion to a warm cup of coffee first thing in the morning. Who wouldn’t want to start their day with this?

As you can see, Fall is here and I couldn’t be happier. While I may have to wait a bit before it starts to feel like Fall outside, that won’t stop me from getting cozy and baking up a Fall-inspired storm inside. After all, isn’t desserts the point of Fall anyway?
To help you get a jump start on your Fall baking, check out this coupon for Luck’s products, as featured here in this post.
Pardon me, but I’ve got some sweet neighbors to welcome to the cul de sac before these baked goods get cold! Enjoy and be sure to pin these recipes for later!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Luck’s.
All thoughts and opinions expressed above are honest and my own.

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