our Easter memories

and the balloon Easter egg hunt idea you have to try!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

We had such a wonderful Easter weekend I want to gush about it all on the blog so I can always come back to read it! Sam and Tom are at a really fun age to delight in all that is holiday magic…I just can’t help myself wanting to go all out.

It’s hard to believe that next Easter we’ll have a 6 month old in the mix too! Needless to say I don’t think I’ll be feeling as Pinterest-mom ish for Easter 2020, ha!

Our weekend started out early on Good Friday. I was lucky to be able to take off work and stay home with the boys who were out of school and daycare. The boys got a package with their names on it–made them feel pretty big time! It was full of Easter goodies from their great grandma and it made their day.

Then we got to have brunch with the Easter Bunny and I learned that Tom is one tough cookie.

He not only wanted to cry, he wanted to ESCAPE the room for fear of the Easter Bunny and kept running to each door trying to open it and telling Sam and I to come onnnnn. But he ultimately put on a brave face and did this funny little nervous laugh and took a picture, even though I told him he didn’t have to.

If you could have heard him nervously reassuring himself through a forced laugh: “Da Easta Bunny no bite me, nooooo….. he nice!” “he no a lion….he nice!”

Bite?!? A lion?! This kid. Sam is happy as can be even though he remarked that was “a human in a suit” and Tom’s look is nothing but pure determination.

That night we stayed in with homemade pizza and a family movie. These “homemade” pizzas are an Aldi find!

Saturday we hosted one of my favorite new traditions. We had our second annual friends Easter egg hunt in the yard. I love that as adults we can just pick and chose how we spend our holiday weekends and those are the
little traditions that will make up our kids’ memories forever.

We lucked out with a gorgeous day as opposed to last years’ rainy hunt and the Easter Bunny himself even stopped by afterwards! Tom seemed okay with him this time around!

Easter is often a time we spend with family but if you have nothing going on the Saturday before, why not have an egg hunt with friends?

Saturday night I went to the MFM podcast live in St Louis with two of my oldest friends and it was a blast! The boys got to attend their great great aunt’s 105th birthday dinner.

105th !

And then, thanks to Pinterest, our Easter morning started off so sweet with a sunrise balloon egg hunt.

We dyed eggs last week with the intention to leave out for the Easter bunny to hide in the yard.

But, with only 11 eggs (it was a win to only break one!) it may have been a tough hunt in our big yard. Plus, kids seem to be programmed these days to want to know what’s IN the egg. In this case—it was nothing of course. I figured hunting real eggs would be more exciting if it came with balloons!

The only tricky thing about this idea is that the helium doesn’t last long so the bunny can’t accomplish it the night before. He really needs to get started on this project about an hour before the kids get up which for this
bunny was pretty early…but just look how magical it was:

They were two happy little boys!

Word of advice if you are looking to do this…see if a friend has a helium tank with a little bit left! I lucked out that my mom had this tank but she figured it had enough for 1 or 2 balloons. I got 8 and could have kept on but the clock was ticking. I had searched all over town and struck out at 3 places that afternoon! Nothing like the last minute 🙂

We spent the rest of a beautiful sunny Easter in church and eating with family then wrapped up at home in the evening testing out new bubble guns and the bath bombs the Easter bunny left.

All weekend I just felt so aware that Easters like this with young kids with all their egg hunting and matching jammies and excitability are so short lived. I’m thankful we were able to experience it to the fullest.

the importance of a girls’ trip

I’ve seen the articles floating around on Facebook talking about just how important taking a girl getaway is and I recently took one!

I have to say I agree.

It’s not like I don’t ever go places with friends. In fact, the last few years have been pretty jam-packed with bachelorette weekends. But those weekends have an agenda and it’s not to sit around and relax.

As much fun as a bachelorette party is, you typically come home exhausted, not refreshed.

My recent girls’ trip happened to fall on my 30th birthday and it was such a great time with even greater friends!

People out at dinner often asked what the occasion for our vacation was–we’d tell how we had all 6 actually graduated high school together in the same small town and this was the year we all turned 30! They thought it was a cool reason for a trip.

I am lucky enough to get to experience a variety of vacations. Sometimes it’s my little immediate family. Sometimes it includes parents and siblings or in laws, and sometimes it’s just my husband and myself.

All of these types of vacations are important, but because of things like mom guilt and limited time off work, I can see how the girls’ getaway can fall low on the vacation totem pole.

Vacations with my kids are memory makers and I absolutely treasure them, but kids are still kids and they need you on vacation just like they do anywhere else.

Vacations with my husband are also too few and far between (we’re still planning that honeymoon 4 years later!) and while I am a huge advocate of kid-free trips, we have differing ideas of complete relaxation i.e. a spa day verses golfing.

Large family trips are so worth scheduling but with multiple families and a greater number of people under one roof they can be higher energy and usually pretty busy.

A girls’ getaway is different.

On a girls’ trip you may sit in your robe for 2 hours after waking up reading a book with a mud mask on your face. 5 other girls may be doing the same thing. OR 1 could be at the gym, some could be at the store, some may have gone for a walk down the beach and some may still be sleeping in.

Everyone is an adult and it doesn’t matter.

On a girls’ trip you discover a new face cream or hair gel because you’re all sharing—you’re offering up anything from a lipstick to a sundress to books to sandals you packed to all the girls.

If you get rained in you aren’t trying to entertain bored kids. Instead you’d just pour a mimosa and open up a magazine.

The TV never comes on because you can all gab until 2am no questions asked.

The relaxation and bonding that takes place on a girls’ trips makes it a must! It’s a vacation unlike any other.

I’m so thankful for these ladies for celebrating my 30th and extra thankful to my husband for holding down the fort at home with ease (as usual!) so I could go!

I slept in til after 9 most days and came home so ready to do a spring clean-out of the yard and tackle a few home projects—that’s rested!

the paycheck to paycheck budgeting method

Living paycheck to paycheck does not sound like something to strive for. For many this is a term that means they are struggling waiting on payday every time. And yes, there are plenty of times I have been waiting on payday!

But, with intentional “paycheck to paycheck” budgeting, you can be in control. It’s a term that I’d use to describe how I budget and how I make the Dave Ramsey plan work for us.

Have you ever thought that the ideal world would be one where you don’t even notice when you get paid because you have that much money in your account at all times? Sounds nice, right?

I used to think so. Then I considered the waste and impulse that goes hand in hand with having excess money all the time.

If you had $22 in your account, you probably aren’t going to go out to eat with the family that night. You may cook at home with what you already have instead. And you’d avoid throwing good food out.

You get where I’m going with this. If you have more money than you need for your basics, then you may find yourself swiping your debit card 10 times a day on things you don’t need at all.

Instead of living in the world where you can spend without care, I decided the ideal world is one where you can be intentional with every paycheck and build wealth or payoff debt (whichever stage you’re in) while still living comfortably and planning splurges/fun things.

So, I budget and look at our spending from a paycheck to paycheck standpoint. Here are my tips if you’d like to try it:

  1. Write out your monthly earnings broken up into paychecks. We are lucky that our two bi-weekly paychecks hit at opposite times, so I can budget for a once a week payday. If you have X amount from your paycheck for the first half of the month, write it down. If you have a paycheck that varies in hours or includes commissions, write down the low to average amount. Now instead of looking at an entire month, look at each pay period individually.
  2. Write out when all of your debts come due each month. Example: you may know that daycare is due every Friday and your mortgage is the first of every month. Utilities bills come in the mail around the 10th and the internet is due on the 15th . Write all of those constants down along with the date due. Then choose a dollar amount estimate for things like weekly groceries, gas, out to eat, and even a miscellaneous. Just get familiar with what comes due when and how much you spend on basics each pay period so there are no surprises.
  3. Move each payment around each paycheck. You probably don’t want to pay the mortgage, the utilities, and the car payment all on the 1st of the month if you get 4 different paychecks that month. They may all be due on the first of the month, but you can plan ahead. Our mortgage is due the 1st but we pay it on the 20th of the month prior because that’s the paycheck I chose to designate for the mortgage. Spread things out so the obligations are evenly spaced and you never feel maxed out at any given point.
  4. Budget down to zero. This is a Dave Ramsey concept, but he does it monthly. I find it easier to be accurate if I do this with each paycheck. Let’s say you know $1000 comes in this pay period and you already know that this paycheck goes towards daycare – $200, utilities – $200, groceries – $100, gas – $100 and misc. – $100. So you know that you have $300 between now and the next paycheck. I like to think of it like this: that money needs a job to do and you have to choose. Don’t waste it because it’s “extra”, do something with this money—save it or pay down debt! TIP – I like to be wait until the day before the next paycheck is due and then I find a home for the money. That way if something truly last minute comes up, you’re okay.
  5. Treat every pay period as its own. If you are going on vacation that same week of the scenario above, then I would not do anything with that “extra” $300 because it’s an unusual week with heavier spending that normal. If you have a week where you have been invited to your parents’ for dinner, then spend less at the grocery store and buy one less meal. If it’s t-ball registration that week, budget for it. This is my favorite part of budgeting paycheck to paycheck. Each week is different, and the idea is to adjust the plan every time. Its okay to say there was nothing leftover that week because it all had an intended purpose. The purpose doesn’t have to be saving, it can be having fun! It’s also okay to realize you had a low-key week and didn’t use the miscellaneous fund or gas money and you have even more “leftover” to reach your goals!
  6. Start all over. Once a paycheck has been used to pay debts/bills, food, entertainment and whatever else was planned for that pay period AND you have done something intentional with whatever was remaining, (be it $50 or $500!) you’ll start all over again with a fresh paycheck and a plan for that period.

Overall, this method has worked well for us and allowed us to focus on my car and get it paid off in a year. Almost every paycheck, some “leftover” went to the car no matter how small. And yes that means I often times submitted 4 small payments in one month. Sure, I could have spent 5 years paying it off and probably not budgeted at all, but I am almost positive any “extra” money I had laying around would have disappeared. Instead, we were intentional and paid the car off which allows more “extra money” each month for another goal.

Don’t be afraid to make budgeting work for you. I follow Dave Ramsey concepts such as paying off the smallest debt first via the debt snowball and the idea of budgeting to a zero balance, BUT I found it was difficult to do one full month at a time. Things pop up and those things cost money. A pay period at a time has proven to be more my speed, which is why I like budgeting paycheck to paycheck.

I don’t usually write about money because it’s not something everyone likes to talk about…but I just enjoy budgeting. I like having goals for the future and working on those as a family. And I like knowing that I’m not spending just to spend and filling my house up with stuff I don’t need (I am an aspiring minimalist but you’d laugh if you saw the playroom!).

Most importantly, we also like to live a little and do not follow Dave Ramsey’s “gazelle-like intensity” motto. I think there is a huge middle ground option that people don’t talk about enough.

Knowing where your money goes is half the battle. My advice to anyone who wants to start budgeting is to pay attention to that, write it down, and make any adjustments needed. And then when you’ve figured out what that “leftover” amount is after basic needs, do something with it. Spend it, save it, pay off your car early. Just knowing what you’re doing with it puts you in control.

“You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you.” – Dave Ramsey

curly girl method – month four progress

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

It’s been 4 months since I ditched sulfates, silicones and regular shampooing. I have to say I am sold on the Curly Girl Method!

Let me tell yall, I think I could be 4 YEARS in and still learn something new from all the curly experts on Instagram. It’s almost overwhelming but I’m looking at it as a fun experiment to find what’s best for my hair.

The progress pictures this month aren’t great, and I expected that a little bit due to pregnancy. I really only got in one good month of Curly Girl method before becoming pregnant and there is a chance my hair is reacting to that some.

My past pregnancies have given me frizzy, dry hair with less curl.
Regardless, I’m almost always happy with how my hair is coming out these days and I think I’ve only done 2-3 ponytails at work since I started this method. I am ashamed at just how often I used to wear a pony tail to work! It was more like 2-3 times a week!

Here are some photos of how my hair is coming out after wash days lately:

Something different this month was trying out a new technique—rake, wet, scrunch. Instead of letting my hair form curly clumps in the shower while sopping wet and THEN applying product, I dried my hair with a t shirt after the shower and then BRUSHED in product.

I know, this doesn’t sound right. I actually was really nervous that even a pony tail wouldn’t fix the mistake I was making by brushing.

The idea behind the “rake wet scrunch” method is that you brush in/rake in product to hair that isn’t sopping wet. This way, you allow the product to get everywhere. Then, you go back and spray down your product covered hair and let the curly clumps form. Then scrunch it and then plop if you want and then diffuse.

The difference is, these clumps are coated inside and out with the products of your choice. With my old method, the clumps were just formed with water, and product was scrunched on over the curls, but really only touched the outside of the curl, leaving all that hair inside the curl without product.

Hopefully that makes sense. I tried it and am really happy with the results. I wouldn’t say my hair looks better or worse, but it definitely didn’t turn into the frizzy mess I thought it would.

This was the first attempt, trying to show you the back because it seemed to make more of a difference back there:

Products I am using lately ( in the right order) include:

Shampoo with Cantu Sulfate-Free shampoo (only every so often, maybe every 5 washes)
Condition with Not Your Mother’s conditioner
Cantu Curl Activator Cream (tiny tiny amount)
Marc Anthony Curl Define Lotion
Aussie Instant Freeze gel

I am also still obsessed with my in-shower comb. I can’t believe I went so long in my life without this thing. How much water have I wasted standing in the shower trying desperately to untangle knots with my hands?! I won’t even travel without mine now.

Thank you for following along with my Curly Girl journey. In a week or so I am going to give a rice water rinse tutorial. I did try it this month but it turns out I lost my strainer…and I ended up with bits of rice in my hair. Oops!

awesome graduation invitations and more – with Basic Invite

I’ve partnered with Basic Invite on the following sponsored post. Thoughts and opinions are all my own.

Spring has finally sprung around here and for me it feels like I have weddings, baby showers, and graduations around every corner!

In fact, a close friend of mine just got engaged last week! On top of that, my sister and I are both pregnant along with a number of other friends. Annnd everyone seems to be turning THIRTY. So to that I say….bring on the celebrations!

If you are in a busy season of life as well, you may be picking out wedding invitations, graduation announcements or other party invites. I was so excited when Basic Invite reached out to me for a sponsored post so I can show you the gorgeous options they have to offer.

I’m thrilled to be doing this sponsored post! I want my readers to know my blog is still my blog and 99% of my content will be un-sponsored. But, this was a huge goal of mine and I hope you’ll like what I’ve got to show you. I’ve even got a coupon code for you at the end!

Basic Invite is a stationery company with something for everyone and every occasion.

Because it’s almost April already, I know many of you may have a soon to be graduate in your life. Check out their awesome graduation invitations, high school graduation party invitations, and even football graduation invitations. They also have the perfect personalized thank you cards for grads.

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I love their options on wedding invites–especially how you can pick nearly any color (read on for more details below!) That is so handy for a bride who is trying to decide on wedding colors. You can’t all be like me and not want a wedding color, ha! I did black and white. But if you are, look how crisp and clean these are:

Basic Invite was kind enough to share some information about what they offer and about what makes them different:

Almost Unlimited Colors – Basic Invite is one of the few websites that allows customers almost unlimited color options with instant previews online. Once you select a design you can change the color of each element on the card to over 180 different color options so you can make sure the card is exactly how you want it down to the littlest detail. This is what we feel sets us apart from almost any other online stationery company and is what we feel is our biggest draw.

Address Capturing Service – Basic Invite offers an address capturing service that allows customers to simply share a link on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media to request their friends and family’s addresses which will be stored in the customer’s account and can then be selected during the design process. Basic Invite offers recipient address printing at no cost on all card orders.

Foil – Foil cards are available in gold, silver, and rose gold. Customers can choose flat or raised foil on all of Basic Invite’s foil designs.

See below a few more of their designs, because it’s all so pretty to look at! How cool are those clear business cards?!

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If you need any sort of stationery for one of life’s events, Basic Invite is offering 15% off with coupon code: 15FF51

What’s your favorite? Do you have any events coming up this year? Let me know in the comments!

one year of blogging

Thank you to everyone who has told me they enjoy reading this blog. Because of you, I have officially stuck with it for a YEAR!

There was technically that little hiatus…summertime is busy! But, I got back to it in October and I have had fun trying to learn how to be a better blogger and how to (maybe!) succeed in goal of creating a
stream of side income.

I am in a few Facebook groups with other bloggers and it’s really amazing to hear success stories of some (real) people who are so successful they start earning $1000+ a month relatively quickly. Can you imagine what that would do for a college savings fund?!

While I don’t know if that will ever be in the cards for my little piece of the internet, I have started to see a few dollars, and it’s encouraging! We’re talking a best month yet of around $20. But, that at least covering my blogging expenses and then some.

This post isn’t really about dollars earned, but about the little successes I thought you may be interested in hearing about. So many people ask me how bloggers make money anyway, so here are the details.

1. Amazon affiliates. This was the first thing I tried and back in the spring of last year I got accepted for a trial run, earned somewhere around $5-$8 in a few months, and then got denied for lack of
original content and my measly earnings went away with it. Sad day!
Since October, I am back at it. My account was not denied after the trial period this time. I have been seeing roughly $8- $20/month for a few months. The commissions roll in a few pennies at a time, so let’s not count on this for college, but this is for sure a blog success compared to this time last year.

2. I was accepted to do Google Adsense. Some of you may notice my site has started running a few ads. I know that’s not anyone’s favorite thing, but if I’m going to pay to keep this blog up and running, it was a goal of mine to hopefully start some passive ad income. This also rolls in a few pennies at a time with nothing notable yet, but being accepted was a nice feeling and I’m counting it as another success.

3.Freelance writing. I have learned than many new bloggers dip their feet into the freelance world while waiting on their own blog to take off. I started looking into that this month, with only my own blog to show for writing examples. Most of my cold emails went unanswered. One got a very polite, “check back in August” reply which I took as a positive (any response is better than none, right?). And most importantly, one blog agreed to hire me to write a post! We’ll see how freelancing goes but I am so excited to have landed even that one gig.

4. Sponsored content. I was randomly approached back in the fall to write a review of a product in exchange for one product to keep and one product to give away. So I have technically (and accidentally) done this once before, just for product instead of payment. This month, I decided top focus on pursuing a few paid sponsored posts for brands/products that I LOVE and would sing the praises of because I love it. A dream example would be Aldi 🙂 This is a brand new endeavor so no results here yet, but I am excited to start working towards it.

None of these things would be possible without engaged readers. Here is a look of how my page view numbers have grown:

Not shown are the dead summer months and last spring which looked similar to Oct/Nov. I think there is enough of March left to keep on trending upward!

Thank you SO much to anyone who has read, commented, shared, pinned. You are making this fun and giving me hope for my “side hustle” blogger dream to become a reality.

With all that being said, I am curious what all you like to read.

I know my Mid Century posts have fallen by the wayside because my home tours didn’t last long. I am always trying to think of a way to get more MCM content in and have some plans for this spring.

My Curly Girl posts were a shocking hit on Pinterest. So much so that I wonder if that’s all I should be focusing on…but I like being random too much.

So what’s your favorite thing to read about? My kids? My Amazon hauls? Saving money? DIY projects? New ideas? Let me know in the comments!

children’s book review – I Love You Stinky Face

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

It’s really hard for me to pick a favorite book to read to my kids, but this book is it. It’s just that well done. It’s the perfect length, great illustrations, easy concept, sweet enough to make me cry and silly enough to make my kids laugh.

The book is I Love You, Stinky Face.

This is the first book I have a memory of reading to tiny baby Sam. He could not have been more than a few days old—definitely under a week. I remember the room we were in and how I still had so many nerves and was in that hormonal state. This book brought tears to my eyes instantly.

Then I got to the part where the child asked what if he were a slimy smelly sea creature and she said:

“Then I would live by the swamp and take care of you always…”

And I sat there with my little teeny baby and cried because I would have lived by the swamp for him too!

I don’t have a memory of my first time reading any other book to the kids. So this one, for me, is something special.

I love how it puts unconditional love and how a mother would do anything for their child in terms that are funny and perfect for kids. This way, it doesn’t come across mushy at all. And other than those very emotional times it’s not really a tear jerker.

If her child was an alligator she’d buy a bigger toothbrush. If her child were a smelly skunk she’d plunk him in a bubble bath. And so on. I love the message.

It does still get my in the feels to this day thinking about how this silly little book about skunks and bugs and peanut butter and alligators and monsters is actually the sweetest thing ever.

I Love You, Stinky Face is a classic at our house. It has been steady in the rotation for both boys since the very beginning and it is my go-to when gifting books for new mamas.

Last night I read it to both boys at the same time and realized that even though most board books have taken up residence in our younger child’s room, this book will not soon be outgrown. I think it’s age appropriate up to grade school really.

It get’s a full on 5/5 on Amazon, which is not surprising. I can’t recommend it enough to add to your collection or to give to someone else!

See the boys below enjoying our new bedtime set up. Since Tom is going to move into Sam’s room come May/June (I want to give him a few months in there before the baby comes) we have started letting him stay up as late as Sam.

In our Babywise household that means they stay up until 7:45 or maybe even 8:00 on the weekends if we’re feeling crazy, ha!

Since they go down at the same time they have been sharing a bedtime story in the big master bed. We snuggle up with a story then we have to sing “roll over, roll over” and fall out one by one. It’s pretty sweet.

I am loving life with these “stinky faces.”

Please feel free to share this on Pinterest:

easy diy oatmeal bath

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

I’ve given the boys an oatmeal bath two weeks in a row now and cannot get over how much this simple ingredient has helped with their eczema!

I remember oatmeal baths from back in the chicken pox days, but never thought about it again really.

Then thanks to this long winter or just the fact that they have eczema, Sam’s elbows flared up overnight and poor Tom’s entire body felt like sandpaper despite lotion. So I found myself Googling.

For me it’s a huge bonus if it’s easy and cheap! I love a good DIY to save some money. This could not be easier and can be made with 3 things you probably have on hand, which I love compared to some more expensive options.

You simply need:
Oatmeal (soothing and moisturizing)
Baking soda (helps with itching!)
A sock (keeps the bath from being a mess, tie it off with itself or with a rubber band)

Put few scoops of oatmeal in the sock. Add in a spoon full of baking soda. Tie it off and toss it in the tub. You can add in a little baby oil or coconut oil but I didn’t do this the second time. Sometimes I add baby oil to baths in the winter to help with their dry skin but it doesn’t do great in hair!

Squish and squeeze the sock a bit until the water becomes cloudy with oatmeal bath magic!

After soaking in the warm water the oatmeal sock gets really soft and you can squeeze out a thicker almost lotion of oatmeal starchy stuff to rub over bad eczema spots.

I even put some of this on them at the very end without rinsing and it was quickly absorbed.

I found myself with the smoothest hands and arms after their bath. I think I’ll be trying an oatmeal bath for myself sometime soon!

Of course it’s best to put lotion on straight after the bath and we have had great luck with Eucerin Eczema cream which, compared to the Aveeno option, has worked really well for the boys.

I recommend this super simple, green, and easy treatment. I wish I had thought of it last summer when I battled a crazy reaction to poison ivy for a month! It would be great for dry skin, eczema, diaper rash and even minor itchy allergic reactions.

Amazon scores 2

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

I received great feedback on my first Amazon Scores post so I’m going to keep them up! It’s not where I do all or even most of my shopping. I love locally owned stores, TJMaxx, and Facebook boutiques equally.

But, I am undoubtedly an Amazon fan. Just today I was thinking about all the things I’ve done on Amazon since becoming a Prime member NINE years ago!

From a Wedding Registry to a baby registry to Kindle books and music on the Alexa, I’m all about it. Why not get some clothing on there as well!?

I just recently signed up for the “try Audible and get two free audiobooks” deal and now I have some audiobook action to compete with my newfound love of podcasts for laundry folding time. I get distracted folding watching TV! Marie Kondo’s folds are WAY to complex too not need your eyes. So listening to something is my new go-to.

Anyway, this Amazon score roundup will probably be the the last one for a while and then around June I should be ready to do an Amazon maternity clothes post!

So here goes more of my in front of a dirty mirror now with some Sam and Tom cameos:

This suede top is my favorite! It’s not too thick or stiff like I imagined it would be and runs true to size. I am comfortable in a medium. The only thing I wish is that I had it in more colors right now because there were plenty to choose from! 🙂

I think this sweater was a steal and I’m pretty happy with it. It’s a waffle knit and very comfy. I probably should have gone up to a large to get the right look though. My boys love nothing more than to tussle around in the bedroom while I give you a fashion show!

I love this shirt for work and it’s rare I’d find a shirt like this for the price! It’s a sheer layered material with a fitted band at the waist and just feels like a nice quality top. In the second photo I tucked in. I should have shown it with dress pants or a skirt because it is super versatile. Fits true to size and comes in tons of colors. I don’t even think that this color was the best for my skin tone and I still love it.

I didn’t read closely or I would have realized this is a crop top. But just barely. I don’t really wear cropped things but if I did, I would say this was not too shabby for how crazy cheap it was! I’m in a medium here and not sure on the fit. I returned this but still think it was worth showing in case it’s your style because of the price!

Okay I did not know how to model these adorable shoes for you. I don’t do them justice with my mirror and bad pedi. But how perfect are they to transition from winter to spring or from summer to fall? I am so happy about this Amazon find!

And that’s a wrap until the baby bump makes an appearance! Thanks everyone for following along. My little blog has been steadily growing thanks to shares from my readers, so if you liked these Amazon scores please Pin the image below!

what’s in your Easter basket?

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Or, if you’re like me, it’s more like what’s in your Amazon cart?

I love shopping for Easter. Maybe it’s because there aren’t lists that can change last minute like with Santa Claus. At our house, there were one to many mind changes on or around Dec 23rd this year so we ended up going overboard!

This is not to be feared with the Easter Bunny who just brings happy little surprises!

Maybe that’s why I love it. I think there is something more fun about coming up with the items myself. More fun, more controlling…however you want to look at it 🙂

Of course I am going for goodies that I know they will enjoy, but I’m also trying to steer clear of more stuff to stick in the play room.

Last year I did a post on ideas for non-toy items in the Easter basket and this year I plan to keep this in mind again. The toy room is more than a little packed from said overboard Christmas .

So, here is what I’m thinking:

Light up rain boots. First of all we need new rain boots. Second of all, my boys are going to lose their minds over these. And third these are a great price!

A book. If we didn’t have it already, you know from my review that I think The Velveteen Rabbit is perfect Easter basket material. I am going to go with this book on the Easter Story that I want to have in our seasonal rotation. Our Christmas and even our Halloween book game is pretty strong, but we don’t have many for Easter.

Bath bombs. For these I am going with a lady who makes them in my home town and I believe she is making little egg shapes this year. My kids love for their bath to change color or that finger paint soap stuff so anything fun for bath time is always a go-to for me at Easter.

Bubbles, but especially these bubble guns. Anything to keep Tom from repeatedly dumping out all the bubbles! I think these will be a huge hit and practical because it’s easier for kids to easily make tons of bubbles this way.

A board game. I got the boys each a game for Valentines Day—Ants in the Pants and Cooties. There are a surprising number of age 3 and up “board games” out there! It was interesting the first time teaching them to follow directions and take turns but really they did great. Plus I love getting them away from the TV on a cold or rainy day. For this Easter I am going with HiHo! Cherry-O , another one of my old favs, to add to our new family game night collection.

Chocolate bunny suckers. Sam saw the Easter Bunny’s factory on the movie Hop cranking out some chocolate Easter bunny suckers and he thought they were the coolest things he’s ever seen. I made a mental note. Ideally these will pop up in stores because all I can find on Amazon is the DIY option—a
bunny shaped mold with sucker sticks…ehhhh.

S’more sticks! We ended up with a fire pit at my family’s Dirty Santa game last Christmas and I am so excited to roast marshmallows this spring! These sticks are fun colors and super long so kids don’t have to stand too close. I think they will also be perfect to pack for our upcoming vacation to Montana!

Hopefully these baskets are a good mix of fun and practical and won’t contribute any to our struggling playroom. I plan to split up the sticks and bubble gun 2-pack between the baskets and give one the book and one the board game to keep it all within a reasonable budget.

I’d love to hear your Easter basket ideas! Let me know in the comments.

Now if only the weather would comply, I’d be ready to decorate! I skipped it last weekend since it was snowing….but maybe I’ll go ahead and go for it this weekend!