Etsy Christmas Decorations

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For me, the day after Thanksgiving isn’t just about scoring deals at the mall, it’s about getting out the Christmas decorations. I tend to put up the tree first because it just makes me happy. There’s just something about staring at the white lights and back-lit ornaments that gives me pure joy. So much joy in… [Read More]

Red and Gold Half Moon Manicure Tutorial

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I don’t do my nails that often, but the holidays always entice me to try something a little shiny or sparkly. Last year, I wore this winter sparkle french manicure during the holidays. When I saw this half moon manicure tutorial, I thought it would be fun to try for the holidays this year. What I didn’t like… [Read More]

Phoenix Zoo Lights Sneak Peek

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Last week, our friends at Toyota invited us to the Phoenix Zoo to get a preview of ZooLights, and also check out a few of their new cars for 2015. During the day, Jade put a ton of miles on a sporty 2015 Camry. The kids and I joined him later to see ZooLights, pretty much… [Read More]

Sourdough Stuffing with Leeks and Mushrooms

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As a kid, my Thanksgiving plate was basically white — turkey breast, mashed potatoes, and a dinner roll. It’s not that my family didn’t have more choices on the table, it’s that my midwestern palate just never got very developed. I never ate the cranberries, the gravy or the stuffing. Being the baby of the… [Read More]

3 Stylish Outfits for Thanksgiving Dinner

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With Thanksgiving only a little over a week away, most of us are planning what dish we’re going to bring or who’s going to host this year. I’m sure the last thing on your mind is what you’re going to wear to your Thanksgiving dinner. Rightly, you are thinking about the food and the people…. [Read More]

The Best Pumpkin Pancakes

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Every November, I bust out a couple of recipes that I only make once a year—my pumpkin cookies, and my pumpkin pancakes. Jade loves them both so much that he looks forward to me making them all month long. My pumpkin pancakes have evolved over the years though. I used to make them with whole… [Read More]

8 Tips: How to Be a Good House Guest

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Thanksgiving and Christmas are only weeks away and I’m sure many of you will be traveling to visit family and friends. When we are with our loved-ones we often get comfortable (or not) and sometimes may abuse our host’s kindness. To avoid that pitfall, I wanted to share with you my 8 tips for how… [Read More]

Menswear Inspired Oxfords

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To be honest, I wasn’t sure I liked the menswear inspired oxford trend for women. At first, I thought they were just too masculine, too clunky. The majority of the oxfords I’d seen in my Pinterest and Instagram fashion feeds were more traditional. They looked like a shoe my husband would actually wear. That just isn’t… [Read More]

Rocco’s DIY Fire Truck Birthday Party

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Rocco is obsessed with two things right now—trucks and basketball. He especially loves fire trucks. So for his second birthday, we decided to throw him a DIY fire truck birthday party. I found these free printables to make him a birthday banner. To make the banner, I used red and yellow construction paper, rubber cement… [Read More]

Low Sugar Strawberry Cake

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My baby boy, Rocco, turned two last month. For Rocco’s first birthday, I made him a low sugar smash cake decorated with cheerios. The cheerios were the dangling carrot to get him to try the cake. It worked, sort of. I’ve mentioned before that Rocco is a super picky eater. He doesn’t like overly sweet things…. [Read More]

Honey Sage Cornbread

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On Halloween night, our friend invited us over for crockpot chili before we wrangled our toddlers into a wagon to go trick-or-treating. I asked my friend Amy what I should bring, and she said whatever I’d be baking for the blog next week. I didn’t have an idea in mind, so I decided to make the perfect… [Read More]

One Look, Three Pays: Sequin Track Pants

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Probably my current favorite trend is track pants. You can find them in all sorts of prints, patterns and textures, like those used in this sequin track pants look. I’m so in love with this trend because the track pants I’ve been wearing look lux, are dressy enough for work, but are super comfortable without… [Read More]

Rocky the Flying Squirrel DIY Aviator Hat

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It’s Rocco’s first Halloween where he will go out trick-or-treating. He doesn’t understand what Halloween is, but we are excited to bring him to our friends’ house to go out for the first time with their two kids who are a bit older than Rocco. When we first started thinking about what Rocco should be… [Read More]

In Praise of Mancation

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Recently, my work became a mancation of sorts, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Picture me rollin’. The dull pain in my head throbbed in time with my vibrating rear view mirror. Lil’ Wayne blurred the asphalt behind me in syncopated rhythm. It was afternoon and I was still burping up the… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Evil Eye Ring

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In many cultures, an evil eye ring is an amulet, a symbol meant to protect it’s wearer. Whether you believe in the curse of the evil eye or not, these eyes have become a staple fashion trend popping up on all sorts of accessories. Just last week, I showed you a wallet with eyes on it…. [Read More]

Fun Halloween Desserts

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Halloween is just a week away. I searched Pinterest to find totally fun Halloween desserts that I think both kids and adults would love. There are so many cute desserts out there. I’m always so impressed with other bloggers’ creativity and craftsmanship when it comes to fun desserts. Some of the recipes I chose are… [Read More]

My Perfect Lipstick Color

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Last week, I tried out 15 different lipstick shades attempting to find my perfect lipstick color. I asked for reader feedback and many of you left me comments on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and here in the comments section. First, thank you for all of your comments and feedback. Reading your comments and seeing which colors you liked… [Read More]

Halloween Inspired Fashion

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Halloween symbols like spider webs, bats, and black cats are not just for October 31st anymore. Halloween inspires fashion works year round. Last year, I showed some of my favorite Halloween-inspired items, like this baby vamp ring I still want. With this story idea in mind, I set out to find Halloween-inspired fashion that I would… [Read More]

Trend Sight: Long Vest Trend

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One of my favorite fall trends is the long vests I’ve seen from Dior, Givenchy and others. I love the long vest trend because it can be worn so many ways. Buttoned up and worn alone as a pseudo-dress, belted tightly at the waist with long flowing pants, paired with shorts for a fun going-out… [Read More]

Pumpkin Spice Granola Bars (Gluten Free, Low Fat)

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I’m a busy mom of two under two and a lot of times it’s a challenge fitting in a proper meal. My husband was out of town recently, and the only time I ate a full meal was when the kids were both napping, which I think happened, like once. During busy times, I sometimes grab… [Read More]

Help Me Find My Perfect Lipstick Color

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Will you please help me find my perfect lipstick color? I recently read this article talking about how women should know which lipsticks work for them by the age 30. Oops. I guess I missed that ‘something you’re supposed to do in your 20’s’ memo. I’m going to be 35 this January and I still… [Read More]

Do Parents of High Needs Babies Harbor Resentment?

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Do parents treat their high needs babies differently when they are older? Do the early years with a difficult baby affect how you see or treat them moving forward? Do parents grow to resent their high needs child? We recently returned from a trip where my parents graciously agreed to watch our two young kids… [Read More]

12 Yummy Nutella Recipes

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I didn’t try Nutella for the first time until about a year ago. Gasp. This is even more shocking because I’m a true peanut butter and chocolate lover. There is no better food flavor combination, in my humble, baked-good-obsessed opinion. The first time I tried Nutella was on a whim, after my husband brought home a jar. He… [Read More]

Trendy Fall Coats Under $300

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With so many trendy fall coats under $300, it’s hard to decided on which style to buy. Whether you’re into capes, military-inspired, mixed media, or robe coats, almost any style goes. If you’re searching for the hottest trend, then you’ll get a robe style coat, which is extra popular this fall. If you like classic, you might… [Read More]

Eye on Etsy Baby Halloween Costumes

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Besides a ripped seam or a missing button, I haven’t sewn anything since I was a teenager. Despite my hesitation, I’ve decided to make Rocco’s Halloween costume this year. I turned to Etsy and DIY blogs for inspiration. Per usual, I was impressed with what I found on Etsy. The selection of Etsy Baby Halloween… [Read More]

Pumpkin Pecan Praline Ice Cream

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The minute October (actually September) hits, it’s pumpkin everything. My Pinterest feed is flooded with pumpkin recipes and pumpkin decorating ideas. I’ve also posted my fair share of pumpkin recipes—pumpkin scones with pumpkin butter, and cranberry pecan pumpkin cookies. I love the flavor of pumpkin foods, especially how the spiciness of the cinnamon, nutmeg and… [Read More]

Three Pays: Pink Pleated Midi Skirt Look

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It’s no secret that I’m a midi skirt fan. Midi skirts are feminine and flirty. Their longer length is more conservative, but midi skirts can easily be made sexy with a crop top or fitted sleeveless blouse and sky-high heels. I love this pink pleated midi skirt look because it is so versatile and shows… [Read More]

Our Free Bahamas Vacation: Part Two

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Yesterday, I posted part 1 of our free Bahamas vacation. I shared my favorite pictures we captured on our journey to Nassau and a few we took while at the resort. The resort was nice, but we wanted to explore the real Nassau—outside of the gated confines of a lux resort. Prior to arriving in Nassau,… [Read More]

Our Free Bahamas Vacation: Part One

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Ya mon! After six sun-filled days on our free Bahamas vacation, we’re home. I already miss the crystal clear turquoise water. My husband won us an all-inclusive trip to the Bahamas last year on the Price is Right. In case you missed my post about it, here’s the video link. Watch closely and you’ll see… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Wool Military Coats

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Military inspired clothing is a mainstay in the fashion world. Nearly every season, you can find touches of military inspiration. Military styles were all over the spring 2015 runways, but you can get this style now. I love a wool military coats for fall for several reasons. The style is classic, structured, and figure flattering…. [Read More]

Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies

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One of my favorite bakeries in Phoenix makes the most delicious apple oatmeal cookies. I love that they use dried apples, so the texture is even chewier than your standard oatmeal cookies. With this cookie in mind, I set out to make my own version. After searching various recipes, I settled on the idea of… [Read More]

New York Fashion Week Spring 2015 Favorites

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New York fashion week spring 2015 ended last week. Although I didn’t attend, I love spending time scrolling through the runway shows and picking out my favorite looks. There are so many different designers and looks that I loved, but these four designers really stood out to me. It also became apparent I have a… [Read More]

Trend Sight: Chunky Knit Sweaters

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You’re thinking, “wow, so original, knits for fall”. But I’m not talking about your favorite go-to cashmere sweater, I’m talking about every kind of knit you can imagine—oversized, with extreme turtle necks, chunky, and with prints. No knit is forgotten this fall, but chunky knit sweaters are definitely a must-have fashion trend. This fall, it’s… [Read More]

Toddler Boy Birthday Party Ideas

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Rocco’s second birthday is next month, so I’ve been tossing around toddler boy birthday party ideas. For his first birthday, we kept it very basic—with the healthy smash cake as the main event. Now that he’s more aware of his surroundings and even says a few words, I want to throw him a party he’ll enjoy. He… [Read More]

No Ice Cream Maker Homemade Ice Cream

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Awhile back, my husband showed me the instructions for no ice cream maker homemade ice cream using ice cube trays and a food processor. It all seemed simple (and ingenious!), so I bought the ingredients to try it for myself. But before I could try the original recipe, we heard about Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream. Her… [Read More]

Sibling Relationships with a New Baby

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My sweet natured son constantly amazes me. Of course there are many toddler tantrums, when he flings himself to the ground with his crocodile tears streaming down his full cheeks. But what has surprised me the most about his growth and development is his goodness, his sweetness, and how he radiates love, especially the love… [Read More]

Fall Short Boots Under $100

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The thing I look forward to most about fall is getting to break out my boots and light coats. Now that we are back in Phoenix, it may be a few more months before I get to wear my fall short boots. But that’s besides the point. School is back in session, so fall (and… [Read More]

10 Kid Friendly Healthy Afterschool Snacks

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My kids aren’t in school yet, but my toddler son already loves snacks. He especially loves those animal-shaped crackery snacks. Even the the whole grain organic versions I buy are still more processed than I’d like and his snack selection is seriously lacking at this point. He will eat most fruits, an occasional string cheese,… [Read More]

Practical or Posh: Caged Booties

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With two kids under two, I don’t have many opportunities to wear sexy heels, like these black crystal caged booties. When I saw the Sergio Rossi pair, I was drawn to the striking scalloped cutouts encrusted with strass crystals.  The high thin black heel and gold back zip add sexiness to these heels. I think they… [Read More]

Our New Home

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After five years away, we are making our new home in Phoenix (again). I recently realized it is also the only city, (besides my hometown of Green Bay, WI), that feels like home. I’ve lived in 5 states and 9 different cities, most since graduating college 12 years ago. With all that moving, it surprises… [Read More]

Goodbye California

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With sadness and excitement, I say, goodbye California (at least for now). Three years ago, we arrived in Irvine, California, knowing nothing about Orange County, other than what I’d seen on that Housewives show. I expected to find droves of women with pronounced plastic surgery, caked on makeup, fake lashes and expensive (slightly tacky) clothing. I… [Read More]

6 Powder Blush Reviews

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Besides mascara, blush is my other beauty must-have. Even if I don’t have time to do my 5 minute face, I always find time to throw on some mascara and a quick swipe of blush. Blush is a must because it instantly brightens your face. For many years, I’ve been using the same Estée Lauder… [Read More]

Blueberry Pie Bars

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Last week, I found my freezer chock-full of frozen blueberries. The only problem was, we were moving in a few days (more on that later) and I didn’t want them to go to waste. I looked up numerous dessert recipes trying to find one that would use the most berries–since I had four pounds to… [Read More]

Etsy Back to School Finds

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As a kid, I always dreaded the end of summer break, but there was one thing I looked forward to—back to school shopping. School shopping was an event. I loved picking out a brand new trapper keeper, backpack and lunch box for the year. I even loved choosing pencils and markers and all the other little… [Read More]

Crystal Statement Necklace Trend

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By far, my favorite fashion accessory is a crystal statement necklace. Awhile back, I talked about statement necklaces and why they are so versatile. A chunky or shiny or truly eye-catching necklace is still my go-to accessory because it instantly changes the whole vibe of my outfit. I might wear the same black dress every couple… [Read More]

Eight Fancy Lemonade Recipes

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I’ve mentioned my obsession with all things lemon before. During both of my pregnancies, I craved lemonade, which is odd since it’s not a drink I usually choose. Sure, it’s yummy, but I would almost always order an ice tea or diet coke over a lemonade. But while I was pregnant, I drooled over that… [Read More]

Metallic Handbags Under $300

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Metallics were everywhere on the spring/summer 2014 runways, such as Saint Laurent. Earlier this spring, I shared a gorgeous Saint Laurent gold metallic futuristic dresses in my Oscars fashion post that I would love to own. But if all-over metallic is too much for you, don’t lose hope. If you don’t want to wear the metallic trend in your… [Read More]

Cauliflower Cheddar Cakes

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I don’t like giving up my bread and baked goods, but I’ve found a low-carb diet is the most effective way for me to lose my baby weight. When you think low-carb, what comes to mind? Eating triple cheese burgers with piles of bacon in a lettuce cup. No, I’m not eating that. I’m usually eating… [Read More]

Three Pays: Black and White Floral Print Dress

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When I saw this look, I fell for the classic black and white floral print dress. Black and white is timeless, and as long as the floral print is fairly simple, this dress style could last for years. Both black and white and floral prints are very popular this year, but I like that both… [Read More]

Dealing with Toddler Tantrums

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Rocco is at an age where he is constantly trying to assert his independence. Jade and I nurture his independence through free-play and letting him explore as much as we can. Despite our best attempts, there is at least one daily battle, usually more, because we won’t let him get his way. The primary tantrum-inducing… [Read More]

Extend the Life of a Haircut and Hair Color

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About four months ago, I got my hair cut and colored by the best stylist I’ve found in Orange County so far. And as the adage goes, you get what you pay for. It was a great haircut and hair color job that I really loved. But here’s the thing – I just can’t stomach the cost… [Read More]