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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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10 PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS FOR DOCUMENTING MOTHER’S DAY WEEKEND

OK mamas, I don’t want to give you one more thing to think about over mother’s day weekend, but I also know how important it is for all of us to capture moments in time with our families… Our moments in time. Regardless of whether you’re a planned or spontaneous picture taker, I’ve put together a list of 10 tips we use to capture all the sweet moments as well as the tiny details of life. Hope they give you a boost of inspiration for clicking the shutter any day, but especially Mother’s Day weekend!

10 TIPS FOR DOCUMENTING MOTHER’S DAY

1. Keep your camera (or phone) close!

2. Think ahead just a little and consider lighting! Of course we want things to be natural and authentic, buuuut, there’s no reason not to open up the curtains in your room when you know the kids are on their way up with a breakkie tray.

3. Tell the whole story – the big picture and little details – Snap pics of your plate of food, cute notes, flowers, gifts, hand holding, your shoes, etc. :) This pic isn’t the best example, but I love her tootsies!

4. Remember WHY you’re taking pics – often times we want something to share right away or just want to check it off our to do list for the day, but taking photos is really about preserving memories for the future and capturing those precious relationships, everyday moments and time in general.

Maybe it’s just me, although I doubt it, but I love looking back at my mom’s outfits and accessories. Especially her glasses! So tryout your best pose and take a fit pic!

5. Focus on the relationships and let go of the pressure to get the perfect pic. Love this fuzzy pic of Poppy being silly and pretending she’s asleep! You can also see one of my frayed fabric swatch she set out to use as a napkin and the double spoons in the cereal bowl we shared — Priceless!

6. Take pics of the process and routine as well as the special parts. One of my favorite pictures is of my mom braiding my hair in the bathroom when I was 6 or 7. I’m on a stool looking into the bathroom mirror with my mom behind me in a hawaiian print off the shoulder dress that I’m pretty sure she made. At the time it probably seemed like an odd moment to snap a pic but I’m so glad my dad did!

7. Don’t forget about videos – capture “small” moments, conversations and interactions. Like their little voices reading their mother’s day cards to you. Ask them questions or better yet, have the kids interview you!

8. Need a group shot? Use your self timer or ask an extended family member or stranger. Want a variety of pics or just a little break from clicking the camera? Pass it off – even to the kids!!! Poppy took this pic of me and as random as it is, it’s also an angle and perspective that only she would take.

(Poppy had just finished pointing out my neck wrinkles which prob have something to do with the 10 lbs. I added to my bod over the winter. Or maybe it’s age? Most likely it’s both tho, huh? Lols.)

9. Practice positive self talk – you don’t need to be a certain size, have all your makeup on or even be dressed to be in a photo. Of course, you can plan ahead a little (like number 2 suggests) and be in cute jammies with makeup on by the time the kids bring you breakkie, OR you can stay in bed, in an oversized tee and hipster undies with a morning face like you deserve, LOL. It’s really about what you want and what your kids will remember most. Although if the no make up thing really bugs you, just avoid eye contact with the camera… instead, engage, play and love on everyone else in the frame.

10. Selfies! Always a good idea.

Hope these help, inspire, and maybe take the pressure off too. Remember, perfection is never the goal so snap away!

Now tell me… what else would you like to learn about photography?

We’re leaving in a couple weeks with my friend and brilliant photographer, Stacy Jacobsen, for a photography workshop weekend and I’d love to share some of the things we learn, so leave me all the questions in the comments!

xo, Rae

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JOINING THE FAMILY CIRCUS

It’s no secret, motherhood can feel like a circus sometimes. Errr, a lot of the times ;). After reading the actual definition of a circus I’m more convinced than ever that it’s a pretty good metaphor. With Mother’s Day approaching and summer sneaking up on us, I’ve rounded up a few things to help make the days of juggling, managing, and accompanying your traveling group of acrobats, animals, clowns and performers, extra fun and festive!

  1. Saw flags like this at the kid party in the movie Mother’s Day and it looked so fun and festive! Plus they don’t cost much.
  2. Clown noses, just for fun.
  3. Circus food? Yes, please! I have this popcorn maker (not super efficient but the kids love it!), this snow cone maker (or this one) got great reviews, and who doesn’t want a little cotton candy sometimes?
  4. Love this dress.
  5. Just ordered this top on major sale.
  6. Animal cracker fudge seems like a good reason to spend time together in the kitchen. Don’t forget to share with friends!
  7. Cute sandals for when you take the circus on the road.
  8. Popcorn bags might come in handy for snack time.
  9. We’ve been trying to figure out a rewards/chores system for the kids this summer. Fair tickets might be just the thing! I like these star ones too.
  10. Wide stripes for the boys! Here’s one that’s on sale for your main squeeze too :)
  11. A diffusor (and some music) is the best way to set the vibe for your circus… add 4 drops grapefruit, 3 drops ylang-ylang, and 2 drops vanilla essential oils for a cotton candy blend. Unlike the sugary version you eat, the oils have health bennies that fight depression, help you destress and curb food cravings.
  12. Tilly and her friend have been having fun with face paint lately!
  13. A megaphone for those days when your inside voice isn’t doing the job and you don’t want to yell :)

cir·cus (noun): 1. a traveling company of acrobats, trained animals, and clowns that gives performances, typically in a large tent, in a series of different places.

See what I mean, LOL?

XO, Rae

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BRUNCH AT BAIR BISTRO + YAY SPRING!

I’m happy to report that it’s finally starting to feel like spring around here which has made it a little easier to get out of the house with everyone. A couple weeks ago we took the younger kids (miss Ozzie so much during baseball season!) on a brunch date at The Bair Bistro in Tacoma. We’d been meaning to go since taking our family photos in the same area last November and it did not disappoint! The atmosphere, the food, and the people were just so sweet and yummy. We ate bear pancakes, carefully played with all the antique decor, sipped on juice (with a splash of champs for me!), occupied the kids for a good 15 minute with a dime (heads or tails? which hand is it in? etc.), embraced the chaos of eating out with kids, and took a bunch of pics.

Outings make me so happy you guys. Especially when they involve brunch! Keep scrolling to see all the pics….

Gah! These two make my heart melt.

Sometimes it’s the simple things that keep the kids entertained or distracted!

  

Poppy trying to ‘floss’! Always trying to keep up with her older siblings….

Speaking of flossing, did you guys see Espen and Tilly’s dance off?

We worked on a puzzle while waiting for our table. Gotta love a restaurant or store that provides activities!

Getting everyone to decide what they want to order is typically quite the process. They ask a million questions always, usually at the sometime too, ha!… what kind of sausage? Can I get a different side? How long will it take? What about drinks? If they don’t have apple juice can I get root beer? Are we getting dessert after this? What if I’m not full from a kid meal?

So different from the days when we would order a couple things for all the kids to split and call it good. Which only lasted until the big kids started reading and now there’s no turning back, LOL. BUT it’s also really fun! Unless we’re in the drive-thru line at Starbucks – then all the mind changing and questions drive me a little bananas… 3rd world problems, I know.

Griffin pretending to be our waiter… Ha! He’s too cute and LOVES having a job to do!

That moment when the drinks come AND they all have lids!

When your food comes but you don’t have silverware yet, HA!

They don’t always get along but when they do it’s magic… (insert all the happy emojis, hearts and rainbows).

Full bellies, happy hearts, can’t loose – should be every parents battle cry, am I right!

Love this of poppy with breakfast still on her face and Espen and Tilly holding hands. Sigh.

Had to get in one more pic before we left too!

Quick question for ya… do you find it hard to get in pictures with your kids? If so, what holds you back? If not, what’s your strategy or favorite tool for doing so?

Feel so lucky to have Johan who doesn’t mind sharing camera duty, but that hasn’t always been the case. About a year ago he really started taking the time to learn more about our camera and is now a better photographer than me! That being said, I still do a lot of prompting whether it’s a pic with him and the kids or me and the kids. Being intentional without forcing things is a tricky balance!

Hope you guys have the best weekend!

XO, Rae

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EMBROIDERED SPRING TOPS + GUARDING YOUR HEART

Want to hear the craziest thing!? Ok, it’s probably not all that crazy, but last week I dropped this adorable top off at the goodwill because there was a little button loop situation that I was too lazy to fix. Then, over the weekend, while trying to organize our giant mess of digital photos, I stumbled across these pics taken a year ago and was reminded of how much I loved this top as well as the photos Johan took of me in it, in front of a pink wall, with my little ones who, if I remember correctly, were pretty spunky that morning.

Kind of annoyed that I gave the top away over a little broken loop and also a little sad that I hadn’t shared the pics on the blog until now. Ironically, I didn’t put them in a post because I was afraid of what people would think… Are they too staged? Styled? Materialistic? Fake? Am I “using” my kids? The funny thing is, I would answer “No!” to all of these questions, so why do I care so much what other’s might think!?

Partially, because I’m human and a people pleaser and have an aversion to criticism and partially because I’m focusing on the wrong thing (i.e. the broken button loop instead of the cute top). After chatting with a mentor of mine and thinking about this Scripture:

“Above all else, guard your heart for everything you do flows from it.” – Proverbs 4:23

It’s more obvious to me than ever that I’m not guarding my heart when I keep what’s in it to myself. I guard my heart when I censor what goes IN it and guess what, we don’t have to listen to the haters let alone worry about them! Isn’t that so amazing!? Or is it just me, HA!

A very sweet man told me several months ago that I need to be more like Teflon and less like velcro and while I’m always needing to grow in this area, I’ve also gotten so much better! Hence, the dozens of photos of my kids and me I’ve shared since these pics were taken.

Moral of the story? There are always going to be critics that watch what people are doing and see the bad in it – and on some level we all should be okay with it because in the end if we’re able to be more free to be who God made us and do more of what we love, then it’s totally worth it! No more taking responsibility for what others think. No more holding back, creating less, being less or sharing less.

Are you with me?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!?

What do you shy away from for fear of what others will think or say? Could be something as simple as trying a new workout class or as big as starting a business.

  

Here’s what we have to say to the haaaattteerzzzz anyways…. ha! JK, only love coming from this crew.

Don’t forget to share in the comments!

Oh, and if you’re in the market for a pretty embroidered top for spring, ZARA has tons of them, all under $50 right now. I love this one, this one, this one and this one for the little ladies. I’m tempted to buy one but should probs go shopping at goodwill and see if I can buy my top back? Ha!

XO, Rae

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FAMILY NIGHT AT THE MARINER’S GAME!

I’m back from a long weekend with one of my best friends from college. She and her family are getting ready to renovate, stage and get their rental home on the market while building their dream home on the same lot that they’re living now. Needless to say, they have a lot going on so I flew down to help pick out flooring, shop for furniture and share my designer advice on things, because — holy moly — so many decisions! If you’ve ever renovated or built a home, then you know what I’m talking about. Anyways, it was so great catching up, hanging out in L.A. (yay sun!) and doing all the home stuff. Feeling a little refreshed but mostly inspired and just happy to be home with my peoplessss.

The Monday before I left, Johan and I piled the kids in the car on a rainy day and headed to a Seattle Mariner’s baseball game… (Ozzie’s game had been cancelled and apparently we don’t see enough ballgames, lol). I was a little skeptical of the decision and the kids were pretty hard to wake up the next morning BUT it was so fun and so worth it. Monday nights at the stadium are usually quiet and also happen to be family nights. Guessing most teams have the same or similar promotion going but it’s definitely worth looking into. Bonus that a lot of the food was 1/2 price, including dip n’ dots! As if it’s not hard enough saying no to sweet treats at the ballpark!

The night got a little harry towards the end (if you saw this Instagram post, you know why, lol) but, our seats ended up being in a non-windy pocket of the stadium so we stayed relatively warm and dry. A few pics of our night.

I’m not gonna lie, this kinda monkey business freaks me out when we’re up so high even though she’s nowhere near the edge. Speaking of edge, how is it that more people don’t fall over the railings at arenas and stadiums? The walls are so low for being up so high!

Tilly and her silly faces!

Poppy was super clingy that night, but eventually came out of her shell and then wouldn’t sit still for the rest of the game. Always careful what I wish for with this crew!

We planned on leaving the stadium at 8:30 but it was such a good game and the kids were being good so we ended up staying until 9:30 and wrapped up our night with some playtime at the kids playground area. Johan and Espen also snuck off to throw a few pitches at one of those bullpens that tells you how fast you pitch. So cute. Wish I got some pics!

Have you guys been to a baseball game yet this season? Funny how we ended up going to a ball game on a night the boys didn’t have games.

XO, Rae

PS — Thankful for a little break from the daily grind, but OMG — so happy to be home!!!

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WHEN SPRING FEELS MORE LIKE WINTER

I know i’ve been a broken record lately when it comes to the weather but it feels like winter and spring have teamed up and are playing a really bad joke on us. Lately, we’ve been getting a random mix or sunshine and hail with buckets of rain in between. Super fun stuff. Especially while watching a baseball game, lol. Up until last week I was feeling alone in my springtime woes here in the PNW. However, after sharing an Instagram poll asking who was having fun in the sun and who was still having to bundle up, it turns out most of us (74%) are still waiting for spring to arrive.

So I figured we could all use a little pep-talk. I just hope you guys aren’t sick of all my lists… Feeling like it’s kind of the spring thing to do :)

5 WAYS TO FAKE SPRING

  1. ADD SOME POPS OF COLOR. Pullout all all the brightly colored things from hibernation (i.e. the back of the drawer, closet or linen cupboard) and add to your lips, wardrobe or home! Flowers are always a good idea too!
  2. RETAIL THERAPY THE SMART WAY. No one wants to make a warm weather purchase that ends up going on sale before you’re able to wear it! Instead of clicking the purchase button right away, add a few things from your spring/summer wishlist to your virtual cart and wait for those sales to start! FYI: My cotton candy colored jeans are on sale plus 30% off right now at madewell!
  3. DIFFUSE OILS & TURN-UP THE FEEL GOOD MUSIC. My favorite blend right now is 6 drops grapefruit, 4 drops lemon and 2 drops peppermint. As for the music, we’ve been listening to a lot of country lately. 60’s music is always a fun way to lighten the mood too! (we have this diffusor and it works great!)
  4. LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE (even when it’s cloudy). Spring is the season of planning, organizing and being productive. Sure, I might feel more motivated to work in the yard or do other spring cleaning items if the weather was nicer, but I would probably also be more distracted.
  5. MAKE SPRING THINGS IN THE KITCHEN. Take advantage of all the new spring produce and flavors and get busy whipping up yummy desserts (like this one), cocktails and dinners! Hoping to try this drink over the weekend… good practice for Cinco de Mayo!

Hello, Spring. Are you there?

Wish I had been eavesdropping on Poppy’s convo, LOL.

Also, banana phones have been trending around our house since taking these pics. So funny to hear the kids have pretend conversations with each other!

Summer will be here before we know it so I guess I should be more thankful and intentional with this season, no matter the weather! More planning + prepping and less complaining :)

Rain or shine, what’s your favorite part about Spring?

XO, Rae

ME | top, jeans, would be cute with these sandals (also on sale)

POPPY | dress, scrunchie, love, love, love these shoes to go with

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WE’RE BACK + SOME PICS FROM OUT TRIP TO AZ

Heyyyyyy sweet friends! I hope you had an amazing Easter with family and friends over the weekend! Still can’t get this scripture out of my head, “GOD told them, ‘I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love!”‘ (Jer. 31:3). It’s a crazy kinda love we get to experience and not just on Easter, but it feels especially overwhelming on resurrection Sunday to me.

In other news, we’re back from spring break! After a week of sunshine and family time, it was so hard getting the kids up and out the door for school this morning. I think just as much for me as it was for them, but Griffin probably more than anyone. And Tilly’s reaction was priceless when she realized she’d have to put on real shoes instead of sandals, LOL. However, we did come home to a homemade dinner waiting for us in the fridge and an egg hunt all set up for the kids in the front yard, courtesy of the most thoughtful friends ever! Sleeping in our own beds last night was pretty heavenly too.

I got several requests for a “Family Guide to Spring Training” type post which I think is a great idea and will be working with Johan to put something good together for you guys in a couple weeks. But first I thought I’d share a big photo dump today and a few details from our trip… here goes!

Of course it’s not spring training without baseball! We arrived towards the end of the season but was able to make it to 4 games. Because everything about the pre-season is easy and low-key (seats in the grass, play areas and splash pads, cheaper tickets, smaller crowds, etc.) there isn’t any pressure to stay the entire game and the kids have more freedom too!

My parent’s rented a house for us all to stay in and stocked it with food and snacks from Costco before we arrived (spoiled us rotten!) so we didn’t do a lot of eating out, but did manage to make it to Cibo and was so glad we did! The pizza and meatballs were amazing and there is nothing quite as good as being able to dine outside… it’s one of the things Johan and I are always looking for during the warmer Seattle months. We of course also indulged in stadium grub and in-n-out too.

For anyone in the Phoenix area or planning a visit, Stacie from alice and ames shared some more great ideas for food and activities in this post.

Of course, you guys know we can’t go very long without a trip to get ice cream or in this case, gelato! Found the cutest spot, complete with a splash pad and lots of room to roam, at Luci’s at the Orchard. Wish we had something similar by our house… I would probably never leave!

Most of our free time was spent swimming but we also made it to Papago park. So pretty and the kids had fun climbing the giant rock!

Peek Kids sent us some clothes to wear and photograph on our trip… we had fun driving around with the girls while daydreaming about living in the desert and scouting for a fun spot to take a few pics. We wrapped things up with a little walk and fro-yo date.

One of our last outings was to a golf course for some putting and chipping. Couldn’t believe how much fun all the kids had, how well they did and that no one got hit with a backswing (YAY!). Have to say though, that we got really lucky with the time since the main course had just closed and we were the only ones still doing any golfing. Otherwise we probably would’ve been pretty annoying and I’m not sure it would have been quite as successful.

Love the combination of heat, food, and activities that Phoenix has to offer while still being pretty casual and affordable. Not sure my kids would handle the summertime heat very well though… they tend to feel like their melting once the temp goes above 85 degrees, lol.  True Seattleites!

If you have any interest in seeing more, I saved almost all of my short videos from our trip to an AZ story highlight HERE.

Let me know if you have any questions or if I missed anything!

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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10 THINGS I’VE LEARNED FROM TILLY ABOUT STYLE + LIFE

I’m convinced we’re never fully ready to love, lead and steward our little people which is kind of a scary thought! Of course it’s nothing a good parenting book, glass of wine, friend, laugh and prayer can’t fix. Yet, every time I think I have things figured out, we enter a new phase of parenting. You too? I’ve found this only leaves me with a couple choices. 1. Stay set in my ways and get caught up in power struggles with my babes, or 2. Meet my kids right where they’re at and grow, learn and do better right alongside them. Sometimes it takes me awhile to catch on to what the real issue is on a parenting dilemma, but hope with all my heart that I will always choose to do number 2, eventually :). Comfort zones are so overrated.

Luckily (HA!) Tilly Jane (our 9 y.o.) always wears her heart on her sleeve so I never have to guess how I’m doing as a mom or what side of the parenting spectrum I fall on. From the second she was born a girl (I was expecting a 3rd boy) she has kept me on my toes while challenging my priorities and approach to life in general. As a toddler she was a wanderer and could disappear in a nano-second, said everything that came into her cute little head (still does), had zero fear of strangers, heights, or consequences, would lovingly tackle and wrestle people during any kind of organized event (like story time at the library), and has been fiercely independent since the day she could walk.

TILLY’S OUTFIT DETAILS | denim jacket (tucker + tate from nordstrom), joggers (Athleta), fruit tee (from J. Crew), sandals (from Target), hair clip (from ryan and wren)

I always seem to be working on something when it comes to our relationship and lately, I’m embarrassed to say, her wardrobe has been a big issue (because it really shouldn’t be). But, I think I’ve finally learned a few lesson(s) and thought I would share in case you guys have a little or big kid that is picky (with a capital P)  about clothes!

10 PARENTING + STYLE LESSONS TILLY HAS TAUGHT ME

  1. If you can’t play in it, don’t wear it.
  2. Wear what you like even if what you like is in your big brother’s closet. (Her current favorite place to pick out an outfit… She loves her brother SOOO much!)
  3. Shoes, jackets and accessories make all the difference when toning down or tszujing up an outfit, flower girl dress or batman costume. (HA!)
  4. To think outside the box, store or department… (she’s been picking lots of things from the boy section of stores, like her blue sandals from Target, and I think it looks so cute!)
  5. Picking outfits out the night (or even week) before is always a good idea!
  6. Personal styles and trends come and go but confidence and self love is always “in”.
  7. My approval and appreciation is far more important than my input.
  8. How to be more present in the moment and less concerned with keeping things tidy (i.e. an outfit, the house, emotions, failures, etc.)
  9. No one else really cares what my kids are wearing — unless they think it’s cute, LOL.
  10. The world doesn’t need perfect, well-dressed kids. It needs mindful, empathetic, and unique kids that are positioned for g-r-e-a-t-n-e-s-s.

ILY Tilly Jane!

Do you guys have wardrobe struggles with your kids?

Also, working on a style Q&A series so if you have any questions, ask away in the comments!

xo, Rae

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LET’S CHAT: SCHOOL SHOOTINGS + OUR BOYS

It’s one thing to have a serious conversation with someone in person on topics as heavy as school shootings, and another to just put my thoughts and ideas out there in writing and with it the responsibility and consequences (good or bad) of my words. To be honest, I’m a little nervous about sharing my thoughts, however I just can’t shake the urge to write and share and hopefully do something positive about what’s happening in our country regarding our kids and gun control.

Political positions aside, one thing I HOPE we can agree on is that what happened in Florida (and other schools) was awful and gut wrenching, and it should never have happen. Ever.

In my opinion, we have a problem with guns in this country but I also don’t think taking away guns would take away gun violence completely. So let’s save that convo for a different time and look at things from a different point of view because there’s another common thread between mass shootings. The gunman’s are boys. BOYS!!!?

As a mama of 3 of the sweetest boys, I hate this fact. However, it also gives me so much hope and here’s why… changing gun laws seems simple enough but in reality is incredibly complex (and frustrating to watch) and there is very little we can do about it on a daily basis. Changing our culture to invest and support boyhood however, seems complicated but is in fact really simple because it starts with us, our neighbors, our schools and our community and we can make a difference every single day.

That’s good news, right?! A few other things I’m believing and clinging to…

  • That being quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger would change everything when dealing with conflict and challenges, but especially our effectiveness. (You guys have to listen to this message! It’s so good and highly entertaining too.)
  • That gun law reform is crucial and will happen eventually (I mean, why can an 18 year old buy a gun?).
  • That we are creative and resourceful enough to start a movement for the boys of this country that empowers, encourages and provides value, connection and a strong identity.
  • That we can influence our culture. (If hip, hop can do it, so can we ;)
  • That prayer is powerful, especially when it leads to action.

On a personal note, we’ve already had some gun related scares at Ozzie’s high school this year and next year Espen will be headed to Middle School. I’m unsure of the best way to contribute to the solution but I’m also not willing to wait for gun laws to change to do anything about the problem.

I know this is kinda heavy compared to my usually lighthearted content, and trust me that is way more in my comfort zone, but if you guys have any good resources or ideas on the topic, please share!!! There is strength in numbers and doing things together!

XO, Rae

PS — Another great (must read) article on the subject of boys is HERE!

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