Archive | LIFE LATELY

THINGS WE LOVE: DANCE PARTIES + DONUTS

RECIPE FOR A HAPPY MONDAY:

  1. pump up music
  2. booty shaking
  3. donuts. 

Press play and see if you can spot Griffin’s fortnite dance move, paper-rock-scissors for the maple with chocolate chips donut, the hair flip, Tilly’s cute bestie Londan, Johan trying to spin Poppy and then Espen, and my embarrassing solo (hashtag mom-moves)!? HA!

Sent the kids off to school for the last Monday of the year and it feels so good to be almost done (last day is Thursday!).

Hope you’re having a good Monday but if not, follow the recipe above :)

XO, Rae

PS – if you aren’t already following us on youtube, CLICK HERE! 

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FRESH PRODUCE + FRESH BUTTON DOWNS FOR SUMMER

I know I’ve mentioned this before, but my no. 1 mom tip for getting out of any kind of rut is to simply mix things up a bit…  So when league play for baseball ended last week, after a long rut-inducing 3 months, I decided to take my own advice and add a few new things to make our daily grind less grind-ish and more fun.

We started with a trip to the produce stand by our house where we spent $17 for a fridge full of local and organic produce!? This part always blows my mind and is a good enough reason to add it to our errands when possible. I also managed to throw on a button down (or is it button-up?) instead of a t-shirt and try two new dinner recipes! Feeling way less blah-ish as a result so am going to leave this post right here to remind myself of how simple it is… Lord knows I’m going to need it about halfway through summer when the kids start bickering and I’m tired of picking up alllllllll the wet towels and swimmers.

A few more pics from the produce stand and outfit details below. Oh, and I saved the new recipes to my “eat” highlight on Instagram if you’re interested!

Does this not make you want a giant fridge with glass doors so you can write where everything goes? And little notes like “don’t touch the whip cream!” or “but first, veggies!” or “save room for tacos”. And then also have enough room for ALL the drink options too?

A girl can dream. But then I should also dream of hiring someone that can keep it fully stocked and organized, LOL. It would be a full time job in our house!

Quick question. Mini carts… God-send or help me Jesus?

The strawberries were tiny but sooooo tasty!

  MY OUTFIT | top from J.Crew (on sale and comes in pink too), jeans (similar fit or similar wash), hat from Nordstrom, shoes are old but similar from urban outfitters

POPPY OUTFIT | top and shorts from J.Crew (she would live in this t-shirt), shoes from Target (they’re comfy too… no sore ankles of heels!)

How do you guys like to mix things up!?

I love turning pizza nights into picnics and adding yoga/mindfulness into our bedtime routine.

XO, Rae

PS – If there is anything that you need to stock up on for summer or vacay, everything at J.Crew is 30% off right now!

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TILLY LATELY AND A Q&A

I always tell Tilly she was my best surprise ever, and it’s true. Since we didn’t find out gender while I was pregnant with her, I had very similar pregnancies with my two boys, and always felt like I’d be a boy mama, I assumed she would be a boy and boy, was I wrong. It was a magical moment when the Dr. yelled out, “It’s a girl!” and laid her on my chest. I’m learning more and more everyday, how to be a girl mom to such an incredible human… She is fiercely independent, a total overachiever, super helpful when she wants to be, makes life exciting, loves crafting and making, and has the biggest sweet tooth… you’ll see more about that in the video.

I had the best time listening to her answers and hope it’s entertaining for you too… press play!

Her “special thing”, HA! She tends to need a few minutes to cool off when she’s upset,  but when we’d ask her to go to her room until she’s ready to chat, she would throw a fit on her way up. Then one day about a year ago she quietly walked up to her room without a fuss when we asked. I was shocked so followed her up a minute later and saw her snacking on a small handful of m&m’s. When I asked her about it the next day she spilled the beans and said a little bit of sugar made her feel better, LOL. Mostly amazed at how self aware she is but also realize that I’m raising an emotional eater — kinda figure that we’re all emotional eaters on some level and hope that as long as we workout the problems it won’t get out of hand!

Excited to do a Q&A video with the rest of the kids… next up will be Griffin I think :)

Happy Monday you guys!

xo, Rae

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MOTHER’S DAY RECAP VIDEO + PHOTOS

Finally getting around to sharing a Mother’s Day recap with you! Although, I still feel like I’m celebrating over here, lol. Anyone else? So thankful for this family of mine… Motherhood (and being a wife, too!) is probably the one thing I’ve never questioned myself about. It hasn’t always looked how I imagined, my house and car are more often than not a mess, the laundry is overflowing, I’m usually tired and running behind, but it’s exactly what I’ve always wanted. These are THE DAYS and I love them. At least until 9 o’clock when I’m ready for a little break.

Saturday morning, the kids brought me breakfast in bed then we spent the rest of the day at Ozzie’s baseball games, cheering him on, chasing Poppy and Griffin around and snacking on picnic food (my favorite). Sunday, Johan had to work, but Oz and his sweet girlfriend surprised me with Starbucks and homemade cookies and then we all drove up to my parents house for some lake time and cheeseburgers. Looks like Father’s Day weekend will look very similar and I’m not mad about it one bit. Pics below…

Wish I could have 5 more of them!

Early in our marriage, when Johan and I would talk about how many kids we one day hoped to have, 5 seemed like such a big number and I know we are considered a “big family”, but I don’t feel like we are, even in pictures.

There are however,  two scenarios when I do get a bit of a reality check 1. anything travel related – packing bags, loading the car, booking tickets or planning housing and 2. mornings when everyone is in the car and we decide to grab Starbucks and our order is  a mile long!

A very fancy breakkie in bed and a donut monster below! Don’t worry though, she gave me a bite ;)

Handmade cards with little kid handwriting! Ah!

Take us out to the ballgame! Just make sure to pack all the snacks.

Sunday at my parents…

These two have the sweetens friendship.

The kids, plus one! The more the merrier.

This seems like the perfect one to end on because I love this moment between Oz and Tilly and then… Griffin’s face! Ha! He should be a professional photobomber.

I know that Mother’s Day looks different for all of us and that there are many without family to celebrate with or a baby to hold and still others that are in the trenches of motherhood and I want you to know that you’re seen, loved, capable, incredibly significant and you deserve the world!

Love you.

XO, Rae

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5 THINGS + WE’RE GOING TO AZ!

The countdown chain has been made, a to do list has been written and bags are starting to be packed — or should I say, piles are starting to be made — for our trip to Arizona over spring break and I would love suggestions for places to visit, eat and play! You guys always have the best ideas.

Here are a few other random things that have been happening around our abode.

  1. On the way to Ozzie’s baseball game on Monday Poppy yelled from the backseat of the car, “We for-totally-got bubble gum!” I about died. And in case you are wondering, we didn’t forget to pack the gum… gum and suckers are staples on game days!
  2. We went to the library on Tuesday and checked out a big stack of books including this cute one about a rainy day! Did you know you can checkout audio books using the app Libby now too? Anyways, it was a great way to kill an hour and the kids had fun so we’ll definitely be going back. Hopefully with a complete stack of the books we check-out last time. That kinda stresses me out, LOL. I hate late fees!
  3. Yesterday Johan and I recreated our first date! We split a burger and fries for lunch while watching a March Madness game. It was the perfect low-key date the first time (especially for a dude) and it was just as fun the second time… I forgot how much I love a mid-day date. Would you want to recreate your first date? What would it be!?
  4. Daylight savings. Yikes! I keep seeing and hearing comments about how hard it is to get kids back on schedule but truth be told, I’m the one that can’t seem to figure things out! Aside from the leftovers I served last night at 6:45, I haven’t managed to have dinner ready before 7 all week. Nor have I managed to get up early enough to workout before finishing a post and getting the kids up. Hopefully I’ll be able to make up for over the weekend!
  5. Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day! Kinda bummed that it’s not on a school day for the kids… Wearing green, getting pinched and classroom parties are the fun part! But there is still lots of fun to be had… Here’s a few ideas from the archive: lucky charms goodie bags with printables | if you need some fun snack ideas | or a sweet treat | don’t forget about this rainbow craft | a “kiss me” garland

I hope you guys all have a great weekend!

XO, Rae

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2018 HEART DAY RECAP

On Valentine’s Day we…

Eat emoji pancakes and homemade whip cream.

Wear pink hoodies (on sale!) and heart socks (Ozzie).

Run out of time to do our hair before heading to school (note Griffin’s bedhead).

Give neck hugs (Poppy).

Run calls at the fire station (sorry honey!)…. not sure when the last time was that Johan wasn’t working on the 14th of February. Not complaining tho! We make up for it on a much less busy night :)

Are beyond excited to handout our cards and treats to classmates.

Wish we could go back to elementary school, just for the day (me!).

Bail on the classroom parties to work, ensure a good nap for Poppy, and prep for the evening (also me).

Have friends come home on the bus and then run all over the house looking for clues in a scavenger hunt that lead to candy necklaces and silly string.

Have a silly string fight.

Eat soup and heart shaped quesadillas for dinner while sipping on the red gatorades our sweet friends brought over.

Consume wayyyy tooooo muuuuch sugar (all of us).

Fall asleep way past bedtimes (also all of us).

Hope you guys had the best v-day! What was your favorite part(s)?

xo, Rae

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15 WAYS TO BEAT THE WINTER BLUES

We made it through January (still celebrating over here!), the sun stays in the sky a little longer everyday, and I finally started to break out of my winter rut you guys. Hallelujah! Even though it’ll be awhile before we see a decent amount of blue skies and sunshine here in the PNW, it seems like we’ve turned the corner and that gives me all the good feels.

In addition to a general attitude adjustment :), getting out of the house always helps beat those winter blues so last week we visited a couple of our favorite local places — the second hand bookstore and the crepe shop! Anytime we can leave the house without a looong shopping or to do list is such a treat. It just takes an extra dose of motivation to go anywhere when we don’t have to this time of year, LOL. Always happy when we decided to go tho!

So many treasures for the kids to find and look at! Funny how entertaining it is to look at things that don’t belong to you and so nice to be in a store where it’s okay for the kids to touch just about anything!

Always running circles around me! Also, Griffin is never not touching a sibling or parent. It’s the sweetest thing although his sister doesn’t always agree :)

We’re still collecting books with colorful covers to fill the built-in shelves in our family room which was part of our motivation for heading to the secondhand bookstore. You’ll never guess what book I found with a vintage orange spine in the discount section…. “cheaper by the dozen”!!! Jackpot! Haha! Still so excited about it and found the perfect spot to put it.

Next stop was crepes, because well, crepes and nutella and fruit and whip are always a good idea. I also love anytime we eat while out and about (even if I pack something) so I don’t have to get a lunch spread out at home before naps! Not sure if that qualifies as a mom hack, but it should!

A little quality lego time (i.e. guess which hand is holding the lego guy) before tucking Poppy in for nap.

Aside from my attitude adjustment and getting out of the house here’s a short list of other ways to beat the winter blues!

15 WAYS TO BEAT THE WINTER BLUES

  1. Embrace the season + accept it for what it is. (Think Turn! Turn! Turn! by the Beatles and the book of Ecclesiastes). There is a purpose and a reason for each season and God is always busy doing good things through us and with us.
  2. Re-establish part of your routine or schedule that has been bothering you or needs some refining.
  3. Mix things up! Grocery shop somewhere new, try a new recipe, take a new exercise class, paint a room, get a fun haircut, try a new lipstick color, etc.
  4. Take turns planning date nights at home
  5. Read/write/journal
  6. Plan for spring + summer
  7. Workout or have a dance party. Lots of them.
  8. Invite someone over to dinner or host a playdate!
  9. Take vitamins, go to bed earlier, and drink lots of water.
  10. Schedule more time with people you love
  11. Look for ways to make little things extra special – get the most out of tubby time, bedtime, after school snack, quiet time, etc.
  12. Start spring cleaning early
  13. Retail therapy is a thing or put on a cute outfit or dress
  14. A simple staycation can do wonders. Book one night at a hotel with or without kids, just because.
  15. Write a to do lists even if it’s just a list of movies

Here’s another fun list of activities to entertain kids on rainy bad weather days :)

How do you guys beat those winter blues???? Inquiring minds want to know so be sure to share in the comments!

xo, Rae

OUTFIT DETAILS:

RAE | pants (on sale!), turtleneck, jacket  (similar and I love this oversized one by topshop!)

GRIFFIN | ski tee, jeans from gap kids (similar)

POPPY | sweater, skirt old from zara kids

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MINI MAKERS: 3 EASY VALENTINE PROJECTS FOR KIDS

The Seattle weather this time of year just about does us all in, so we’re trying to stay busy and distracted over here. A homemade treat, kitchen experiments (slime anyone?), and simple crafts always seem to do the trick tho. If you’re feeling the same way, here are a few Valentines-ey projects that have been giving us life right now and make hunkering down at home feel extra special.

WHITE CHOCOLATE VALENTINE POPCORN

Shared the recipe on my Insta Stories yesterday and added to the “eat” highlight reel for safe keeping too, but it deserves to be documented here too… it’s that good! I cut way back on the chocolate compared to other recipes and will normally add the hearts after the kids dish their bowls so they don’t get too much :)

YOU’LL NEED:

  • 5 oz. bag popcorn or 15 cups homemade, lightly salted
  • 6 oz. white chocolate, melted
  • sprinkles + conversation hearts

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Pour popcorn into a large baking sheet/pan.
  2. Drizzle with white chocolate and sprinkles and then toss until incorporated. Sprinkle hearts over the top. Cover and let sit until chocolate hardens.
  3. Dish up for your little (and big) valentines!

CONVERSATION HEART ACTIVITIES

That don’t involve eating them although we know it’s inevitable. A few ideas…

  1. Pour a bunch in a jar and have the kids guess how many, then count together.
  2. Drop a few in a glass of sparkling water or clear soda and watch them dance around. Kinda fun and science-y!
  3. Play around with making and matching patterns, or sorting.
  4. Give everyone a box of hearts, set the timer for a minute (or 5, lol!) and see who can stack them the highest! When you’re done, grab a few snack items from the pantry and use the candies to make individual trail mixes.
  5. Practice fine motor skills with little ones by scooping, and tweezing  hearts from one bowl to another. Challenge older kids to use chopsticks. Here’s a few more montessori inspired activities!
  6. Take it one step further with these fun family night games. Would be fun for sleepovers too!

HEART GUYS FTW!

Can’t beat this classic! I found colored cardboard hearts and googly eyes at target and then cut up strips of text weight paper into strips. Set all the materials out on the table and let the kids get creative. Most of the finished hearts got taped to their bedroom doors which I love!

YOU’LL NEED:

  • Hearts cutout of card stock or construction paper (found our hearts at Target, but couldn’t find online)
  • Googly eyes
  • Text weight paper, in various colors
  • Tape or glue stick
  • OPTIONAL: smaller hearts cutout for hands and feet, black marker for making a mouth + nose, stickers, pop-pops or other items to embellish with

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Cutout hearts and strips of paper for the arms and legs — ours were about 1-1/2 inch wide and 8-1/2 inch long for the legs and 5 inches for the arms.
  2. Fold the strips of paper like an accordion and tape onto the backside of your hearts.
  3. Embelish with eyes, etc. and you’re done!

Aren’t they cute!? And fun for everyone!

How are you guys having fun and staying sane at home on winter days!? This past Saturday we filled the stairway with mattresses so the kids could slide down, LOL. Anything to get some of their energy out these days!

Hope your week is off to a good start!!! Don’t forget to check classroom valentines off your to-do list!

XO, Rae

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A NEW ME IN 2018

I’ve been wanting to share my goals and thoughts for the new year but, TBH 2017 kicked my butt and despite all my praying, goal planning, and optimism, 2018 has been off to a rocky start too. So I’ve been holding my heart a little closer these days. Finally feeling ready, excited and just vulnerable enough to write this post… along with the pic above that I never expected to share with anyone. Ever. (haha!) Bet you never thought you’d see me in my undies!!!

A few of my goals for the year:

  1. to be a learner (especially in the area of parenting!)
  2. to let my no be no and my yes, yes. (which is soooo hard for me!)
  3. to make self-care (body, mind a spirit) a priority.

All three seem more than doable but I knew there would be that little voice of insecurity and guilt that would find it’s way into my head the second I felt like my decisions or priorities somehow disappointed or inconvenienced someone else. So I decided to also pick a word for the year and I have to say, it’s been the most helpful and empowering thing. Not to mention, I’m kinda in love with the word:

U N A P O L O G E T I C

Which, to me, is just a simple way of saying that my value, decisions and behavior will not be dictated by other people’s unrealistic expectations, moods or negativity. Of course it hasn’t been easy and I’ve failed more than once, but I’m learning, embracing and enjoying the outcome!

All that to say… I’m coming for you 2018! A little slower than I would like, but with a heart full of hope and expectation that no matter how things started and regardless of how many times I fail, the journey will be better than I could dream. God just doesn’t know how to do anything less.

I would love to know how your year is going!? Did you set goals, pick a word, or just decided to do you (boo-boo)?

xo, Rae

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CHRISTMAS BREAK RECAP: MAKING, BREAKING + KEEPING TRADITIONS

Still pretending that 2018 hasn’t actually started… anyone else? Our tree (sans ornaments) and a few strands of twinkle lights are staying up a little longer (no shame) and I feel like I’m still process all the fun we packed into the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years. This year looked so different from years past which wasn’t our plan initially but ended up being my favorite part! There were a few things we didn’t check off our holiday bucket list, like ice skating, but there were several things I hope we can continue to do together! Here are my top 4…

1. SANTA PICS will continue to happen if I have anything to say about it! Being able to look back at pics from each Christmas is one of my favorite family keepsakes.

2. CHRISTMAS JAMMIES are a must for reasons I’m sure I don’t have to explain. As the older kids start to wear random things to bed too this tradition just keeps getting sweeter — seeing everyone in seasonal pjs gives me all the heart eyes! Maybe next year we’ll try matching :)

3. ATTENDING A HOLIDAY PERFORMANCE is one of the things we’ve been inconsistent about but this year we made last minute plans to take Griffin and Poppy to see Elf the Musical and it was definitely a highlight and something I want to be better about next year. Maybe we’ll even plan on doing something different each year… If you have any suggestions, please share in the comments!

4. PLANNING A FEW NIGHTS AWAY AS A FAMILY before Christmas, despite feeling totally overwhelmed before we left, was one of the best decisions we made last month! There is really nothing like time away to help refocus, recharge and make you feel like the luckiest person in the world. Would love to make this a tradition!

(We snuck away to our family cabin in Leavenworth, WA which we are so lucky to have but I think a couple nights anywhere other than home would have done the trick… even if it means fewer gifts under the tree!)

We have yet to establish any kind of New Year’s tradition. This year Johan worked both days, the older kids were with friends and I was asleep before midnight for the first time in forever. It was actually pretty great. However, it would be fun to figure something out that we could all look forward to every year…  or maybe not having a NYE tradition can be our tradition, LOL?

What are some old or new traditions you can’t wait to repeat next year!?

XO, Rae

 

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BEST COFFEE IN SEATTLE + RUFFLES ON EVERYTHING

We’ve officially given into the cold weather and are trading our favorite ice cream shops for coffee shops! This one is C & P Coffee Company in West Seattle. Doesn’t that bright colored door just beg you to come in and see what’s on the other side? The answer is delicious coffee and an eclectic and cozy atmosphere. It was too busy to try and take pics inside so the equally cute front patio area will have to do, but you guys would have loved it!

The weather was decent (aka, not raining!) so we grabbed our drinks and snacks and sat outside. Americanos are my go-to but opted for a latte just for the foam. Best decision I ever made :)

I’ve also traded in my tees for sweaters (and sweatshirts of course)! And thanks to a Happy Birthday coupon code to Anthropologie, I have a new one with ruffles. There are so many cute ones out there to choose from but I’m loving the detail and placement on the sleeve.

Can we also talk about how cute Poppy’s little ruffle dress is!? I’ll link all outfit details below!

Poppy had fallen asleep on the car ride and woke up on the wrong side of the car seat, if you know what I mean? Come to think of it, she’s always kind of a bear when she wakes up! Could it be a blood sugar thing? Or just a personality thing? Snacks always help but I think that’s just a general rule of being human.

Aside from snacks, we haven’t left the house lately without a travel bag of shopkins for Poppy. They’re easy to sort, line up in a row or pretend play with.

Poppy perked up on the walk back to the car, so we decided to stop by a friend’s house just a few blocks away for some playtime. Not a bad way to spend the morning!

What’s your favorite way to spend a morning?

xo, Rae

MY OUTFIT | sweater from anthropology x straight leg cropped jeans from madewell (similar or same jean in a slightly diff wash and on major sale!) x metallic mules from nordstrom (similar)

+ POPPY’S | coat from gap (similar) x ruffle dress from rockets of awesome x tights from target x puma shoes (in black at nordstrom rack for $25)

(images by Johan)

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