Archive | summer



Earth Day is Friday and my kids have been sharing all kinds of new-to-them info about different ways to take care of this sweet and beautiful earth that takes such good care of us. So far they’ve picked up most of these tips from school so I thought it was time to do a little schooling at home… not that I taught them anything new, but we did do some up-cycling and planting!

Here’s how we made our UP-CYCLED TIN CAN HERB GARDEN:

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You’ll Need

  • .5-inch and/or .75-inch alphabet stickers (we used .5-inch for the water can and .75-inch for all the other tins)
  • Empty tin cans (the cilantro is in a larger ‘crushed tomato’ can
  • Drill & bit or nail and hammer
  • Acrylic paint & brushes
  • Painter’s tape
  • Rocks from the yard
  • Soil
  • Plants or seeds

To Make the Cans – Clean and dry empty cans. Use a drill and bit or nail and hammer to make 3 or 4 holes in the bottom for water to drain. Place alphabet stickers as desired on can. Use painters tape for a dipped paint look, on the opposite end of the can from stickers. Paint until can is covered, drying in between coats if needed.

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To Plant Herbs – Place 3 or so rocks in the bottom of can. Add soil and the plant, filling with more soil as needed.

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Then water…. and try a taste of each herb.

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Or make your big sis do it.

Clip sprigs anytime they are needed for a fancy drink, garnish or dish!

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It’s sweet to see their passion for the earth and environment. Until they give me a hard time about using too much water or remind me that the microwave is much more efficient than the oven. Lols.

Do your kids ever so the same?

We’ve come so far from the days of ‘Give a hoot, don’t pollute’! It was such a fresh, new concept when I was young (or at least that’s how I remember it?).

XO, Rae



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One of the chronically un-styled + unfinished areas of our home is the front porch. Mostly because I’m really good at killing plants, rarely find a wreath I love enough to splurge on and just haven’t taken the time to think about other ways to decorate. But with all the street hokey, fliers up, side walk chalk sessions, bike rallies, etc. that happen on our street, the porch could easily be used as an extra outdoor living space for people to hangout on. So a couple weeks ago Johan and I spruced up the front porch in just 3 easy steps…

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1. Cozy Seating: Using a couple pallets we had laying around and pinterest for inspiration, Johan made and hung a swing (thanks honey!). I shopped the house for a few pillows, but will be looking for outdoor ones to replace them with, and added an old rug that was folded up in the linen closet. When it comes to bringing the indoors out, pillows and rugs are my go-to!

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2. Updated Basics: A new flag and door mat, galvanized bin to hold shoes, knick-knacks and packages, and a simple fern that loves shade and should be easy to keep alive. Crossing my fingers. Now if I can just find a cute wreath!

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3. Lighting: Who says café lights are just for the backyard!? We hung a couple strands (criss-crossing them in the middle and used a staple gun to keep in place) and love how they add an inviting glow and festive look. Like we’re always ready to party :)

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(The kid’s latest project… a tin can herb garden.)

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It’s been fun seeing everyone use the porch for more than the front door. As you might have seen on snapchat (raeannkelly), the pallet swing is easily the fave.  Tilly didn’t waste any time making herself at home!

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“hey good lookin'” doormat / galvanized bin (but found for less at local hardware store) / striped basket (from IKEA but couldn’t find online) / flag / eye pillow / teal pillow / prismatic striped pillow / cafe lights

Do you have any spring projects planned for the weekend!?


xo, Rae




I know I’ve been bombarding you with posts this week, but I don’t want you to miss this fun project we shared on the land of nod blog using dinosaurs, sand and water.

I find that as our family changes to accommodate the schedules and activities for the older kids, the younger ones miss out on the playtime activities that are just for them. Sensory play is one of those activities. A few weeks ago however, we set up a sand and water table and the littles have been loving it… even Tilly! To keep them engaged I’ve planned a few different activities and their favorite (which involves squirt bottles of course) is the ice and sand dinosaur excavation.

Head here for DIY details and if you don’t have a fancy activity table just use plastic or galvanized bins!

XO, Rae




One of my many flaws in life is that I’m late. A lot. I would blame it on my kids but the truth is I’ve always been this way. Rushing around like a crazy person at the last minute trying to get ready and grab everything I need. Diaper blowouts, shoe debates and car seats only add insult to injury.

While I should probably make a “be on time” resolution I’m more of a baby step kinda girl. One of the things I know would help is packing up a few hours or (gasp!) the day before we have an outing or activity. Since spring baseball season is notoriously a busy time of year for us and little league tryouts were this past weekend I decided to put together a car caddy full of snacks, activities and other necessities for my mini spectators. Baseball might not be your thing this spring but a car caddy could easily be updated for park dates, trips to the farmers market or weekend outings and would definitely be handy for trips to the pool this summer.

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Here’s a look at what I packed:

  • Tote/Caddy/Crate – Love this basket-tote from Land of Nod and it’s on sale!
  • Blanket – We use this Gunner and Swain Mexican blanket for almost everything but I would like to find something that will work well when the ground is wet.
  • Snacks – Popcorn, Cliv Kid ZBARS, trail mix, honest kid juices, and boxed water.
  • Treats – Lemonheads and bubble gum remind me of watching my big brother play baseball so I had to throw those in there.
  • Activities – Sidewalk chalk, clipboards and coloring supplies, oversized jax game, and a soft soccer ball.
  • Misc. – Bandaids, neosporin, hand sanitizer and wet wipes.

Now if I can just keep it stocked and ready! Did I forget anything?

Are you an on-time or mostly late kind of person? Or maybe in-between? Please share any tips you have in the comments below!

XO, Rae



soccer-mom-4My favorite part about fall in addition to the return of pumpkins, plaid, football, and comfort food is soccer season and watching my kids play. This year is especially fun because both Espen and Tilly are playing! Our entire morning and early afternoon was spent on soccer fields (and taking a few pics) last Saturday. As a former competitive player it was the perfect way to spend the day!


MAMA OUTFIT: midi dress (similar 1 2 3 4), chambray (similar), sneakers, sunnies (similar)

I always feel a little stumped when it comes to getting dressed for a day of watching soccer, running around and wrangling the kids. I want to be cute but not overdressed and comfortable but not frumpy. I guess it’s kinda silly to put so much thought into it, but I like clothes and getting dressed so I think about it :)

Some gamedays I’m in my workout clothes and others jeans but last Saturday I wore this cute and sporty jersey knit midi dress with fall-ish stripes, a chunky sweater (not pictured), layer of chambray and sneakers — Always sneaker, or boots when it’s rainy — and it felt just right.

Regardless of cute or sporty, being able to play in what I wear is a must. There is always a little free time to fill or bored siblings to play with. And honestly, I know I said that I love watching the kids play, and I do, but I also have a hard time just sitting and watching and end up multitasking between watching, playing with the other kids and chatting with other parents. I guess part of that is unavoidable with a one-year-old but my goal is to be better about just watching.


POPPY OUTFIT: pants, shoes, sweatshirt

TILLY OUTFIT: top, shorts (Marshall’s), socks (Target), shoes (cousin hand-me-downs)


soccer-mom-17soccer-mom-16Also, hard pants on Poppy! I like my babies being comfy and cozy and didn’t think she (ahem, I) was ready for jeans, but these are still nice and soft.


What are your favorite game day digs!? Also, are you more of multi-tasker during games or do you give your undivided attention?

XO, Rae

(images by Stacy Jacobsen)


P.S. – Just to end on a funny note. We had a real america’s funniest home videos moment during these pics when Tilly hit Poppy with the ball perfectly in the forehead. I didn’t even know she could kick like that! Anyways, Poppy didn’t cry until she saw my face. Not my finest mom moment but I could not stop laughing when I saw this photo.



Wait, what? Two fashion posts in a row!?

Yes, that’s right. Totally unintentional but the combination of not having my planned monday post ready, the cool-weather weekend we just experienced and the oodles of back to school catalogues that just showed up in my mailbox has me considering fall layers. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not ready for summer to end. Not even close. Back to school sounds like a swear word at the moment but in a few weeks it will be unavoidable so I thought I would ease myself into it with a transition post and share a few summer wardrobe pieces that I will most likely be sporting this fall.



FLARE DENIM – pictured

  1. free people mid-rise
  2. madewell flea market flares
  3. anthropologie high-rise flare

These puppies came back in style quickly considering it seems like yesterday I had a few pairs in my goodwill pile. Anyone else? Regardless, they are back and I’m pretty excited about it. Mostly for their 70’s charm but also because (hello!) legs for days!

Side note: Loving the mid or high-rise fit with a hem the grazes the ground (like pic 1 or 2 above).



  1. asos in black matte
  2. nordstrom in suede

Probably not the most practical item for fall since I’m not sure I’ll be brave enough to wear with socks, but this summer I’ve had to be purposeful about not wearing them everyday so my other shoes didn’t get jealous, so I’m not sure I’ll be able quit them just because the weather changes a bit. At the least I’m guessing they’ll be on repeat through mid-October :)


JUMPSUITS – pictured

  1. twill jumpsuit at nordstrom
  2. denim romper from anthropologie
  3. madewell zip overalls

I can hardly wait to get my overalls out of seasonal retirement and I’ve gotten a lot of use out of the jumpsuits this summer so they will definitely be in my closet this fall.



  1. itsums – I can’t say enough about this online app/social space where you can set a budget and then start “pinning” items to your project board and let the app keep track of all the products while add things up for you… all in one place. Seriously a God-send and worth trying.
  2. @ellabrooksblog on Instagram – she is much more California cool than mio, but I find her feed so sweet, inspiring and share worthy.
  3. Emilie Maslow and her pinterest boards – a fellow pacific northwest girl and friend who has the most amazing eye for cool real life style as well as the catalogue kind.
  4. Kendi Everyday blog – Probably the only fashion blogger I follow consistently. She wears a lot of heels and outfits that aren’t as practical for my life but she keeps it fresh, tries new things and is fun and not stuffy.

So there you have it. Summer pieces that have fall staying power and my secret weapons for doing anything stylish and on budget.

What are you looking forward to wearing this fall?

XO, Rae

(Photo magic by Stacy Jacobsen)




ice-cream-cone-wrappersDuring the summer months everyday is national ice cream day but yesterday it was official and since ice cream makes everything better (even mondays) I thought I would share these cute ice cream cone wrappers.

Scroll down to download friend!


click to download, ICE CREAM CONE WRAPPERS, PDF

To use, open the file, print on white paper (text weight or card stock), cut along dashed line, wrap around sugar cone and secure with tape.

Looking forward to using these next time we have company.


As seen here, picking an ice cream flavor is a major struggle for this fam and I almost always end up buying more than one at a time. Lately caramel waffle cone get’s my vote. How about you guys… Do you have a favorite flavor?

XO, Rae



Summer is almost halfway through and I have the pile of beach towels, messy kitchen, dirty feet, bickering kids and loads of pictures to prove it! As crazy as summertime is with all the kids home nothing beats the sunshine, chill vibes, yummy fruit and extra playtime with my peeps.

Here are a few things (and mishaps) we’ve been up to since school got out, according to Instagram and my iPhone.


//Summer birthday party planning.//We said adios to the threenager stage (fingers crossed) when Griffin turned 4 earlier this week!//We finished up the girl’s room. Pictures coming soon.//Watermelon + cookie cutters = cheap entertainment//Perty blooms from a friends yard = friends with benefits//New work projects. YAY!//


//KIDCATION to LEAVENWORTH, WA with stacy and her boys.//Kidcations have become one of my favorite traditions (see others 1/2) and was the perfect getaway to celebrate the end of school year.//We swam at the community pool, ate lots of pizza and hot dogs, started a kickball pick-up game and generally speaking let the kids be kids while us moms hungout and watched.//


//Espen and Tilly both passed beginning swimming which is a huge fete since neither of them are very natural in the water. Proud mama moment!//


//We’ve been to the farmer’s market a couple times this summer. Our last visit was more about the kids eating shaved ice (the sidewalk ate most of it!) and running around at the playground and less about picking out fresh food. Our market gets so busy it stresses me out trying to maneuver through the crowd and stands while keeping everyone together so this was a nice solution. Next time I’ll go with a smaller crew… or maybe as a date with my boo!? (rhyming is cool)//


//4th OF JULY was magical. The end.//


//BLUEBERRY PICKING was also a highlight of the summer. We ate as much as we picked and the kids enjoyed the entire process!//


//Every year without fail something begins to happen around mid-summer. We all get a little sick of each other so the bickering begins. My solution is to do one of two things, send everyone to a quite space to read or build legos or get out of the house and DO something. Here are a few things that have worked for us. Not that they are very original or creative.//Bike rides.//Bracelet making.//Nearby trails close to water and lots of shade.//Tennis courts.//

Basically our summer (so far) in a nutshell minus a few outings not pictured. We have one other stay-cation planned that’s coming up and 4 birthdays to celebrate but other than that  this is pretty much what the rest of our summer will look like.

What’s been your favorite activity this summer!?

XO, Rae



Summertime Stroller Workout

It’s challenging enough to fit a workout in while the kids are in school and with everyone home now for the summer 24/7-ish it’s hasn’t gotten any easier. So I asked my super fit friend, trainer and health guru, Tori, to help put together a workout routine the kids can tag along for either in a stroller, on bikes or at the park!

Excited to share what we came up with and a free printable to make it even easier, below:



Here is an example of something I might pick for a workout:

  • Cardio: 2 minute run
  • Exercises: BURPEES//overhead squat (with poppy as weight)//kettlebell swings (with poppy as weight)//crunches
  • Reps: Pyramid (12, 9, 6, 3, 1)
  • Repeat: 5x or 1 pyramid sequence

BREAKDOWN: so I would run for 2 minutes with the jogger, stop and do 12 burpees, 12 overhead squats using Poppy as my weight, 12 kettlebell swings with Poppy as my weight and 12 crunches (with Poppy most likely crawling over me :). Then run again for 2 minutes, stop and do 9 burps, 9 overhead squats with Poppy, 9 kettle bell swings with Poppy, and 9 crunches. Run again for 2 minutes and then stop and do 6 of each exercise, etc.  Make sense?

YouTube is chockfull of exercise videos so search there if you need a how-to visual. Be sure to start easy and build from there. I always try to remind myself that working out is more about progress, endorphins and being a good example for my kids then getting a six-pack in one day.

If working out is not your thing try inviting a friend (or 5) because there is power and encouragement (and silliness) in numbers. Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below!

XO . Rae

A HUGE thanks to Tori for helping out with this post! If you are local and looking for a gym we LOVE and highly recommend Doxsa Crossfit. They do an amazing job and always have new classes and programs going on. You can even try it out for free and kids are welcome. Maybe I’ll see you there? 


SUMMA, SUMMA, SUMMA-TIME (prints + fake tattoos)

One thing you guys might not know about me is that I’m kind of a badass.

Totally kidding. But I do have a tattoo. One that I could hardly wait until I was 18 (and still a senior) to get with a group of my friends. Now I can hardly wait to have it removed (LOL), but I do still love tattoos. Atleast the idea of them and when they are on other people…

summer tattoos

…Or the fake kind!

So to kick-off SUMMAH, i designed some tattoos and little cards for the kids to handout to their classmates. For the school friends they’ve gotten extra chummy with we’ll also leave notes on the back about getting together for playdates.

You can download them here:

I just bought some tattoo paper (there are cheaper brands but I haven’t tried them) and ran them through my color printer. Follow the directions on the packaging and then cut and tape to the cards. A little tip — before using it helps to trim around the design so there isn’t as much white.


I know many of you have already had your last day of school but think they would still be fun to handout to friends in the neighborhood or as a party favor…. or pin for next year!

XO . Rae

PS (the longest one ever!) – I’ve been summer-afying our home and can hardly wait until all of the backpacks in our mudroom are replaced with tote bags and beach towels. I also love when the decorative pieces in our home add to the summer vibe and have been working on making new prints for the shop. Here is what I have so far… (minus the “be brave”).

new-summer-printsand then I’m hoping on adding a new one every week day for the next few weeks. Head to the shop to see everything and Instagram if you want to follow along!


DIY Summer Straw Toppers (freebie!)

H A P P Y  Memorial Day  F R I E N D S ! Mondays are way better when part of a long weekend, yes!? While we are busy soaking up the extra 24 hours of playtime my heart has been bursting with gratitude for our military (+ their families) who’s bravery I can not even begin to understand + the freedom that I take for granted everyday. To everyone who has lost, sacrificed + served, T H A N K   Y O U !


Now for something far less meaningful but totally cute; a freebie for all your summer hangs.

Here’s How To: Download, open in Adobe and add letters to each hexagon. I used a cut paper font (this one is cute and free!). Then print on card stock, cut along dashed lines and cut small slits to the left of the letter using an xact-o knife. Add to straws or package up and give as a little gift!


Now that summertime is weeks away we’ve been prepping the house for non-stop playdates, BBQ’s and get togethers. All the winter hats and boots have been put away and replaced with beach towels and flip-flops. We also made a gigantic Costco shopping (wish) list over the weekend. Remember this “Raid the Pantry” post!?


(HOORAY print, IKEA locker, Urban Outfitters rug)

Can’t wait to get the locker stocked again for the kids and their friends.

What have you been doing to get ready for summer?

XO . Rae