Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Believe in better milk.

Every now & then, we come across companies where we not only love their products, but we absolutely love everything that they stand for. We are so proud to be introducing one of our newest partners, fairlife, and sharing why we choose this milk for our family. 

For us, it's simple, our family LOVES milk & drinks a ton of it. Harper & Eloise each have a full sippy of milk at breakfast & another at bedtime, and always ask for more. They would choose chocolate milk over juice any day of the week. Claire drinks three bottles of milk a day, sometimes more. When you are giving your kids that much of one thing on a daily basis, it is so important to take a look the ingredients & the process for which it is made.

fairlife milk is lactose free, with more protein (13 grams to be exact) & half the sugar typically found in regular milk. And of course when you hear this, the first thought that comes to mind is "yes, but what does it taste like?!" I will be 100% honest here and tell you that I was a skeptic. I have always been weird with dairy products & was a little weary that this could possibly even taste like milk. But you know what? It was absolutely perfect. It tastes just like milk, but better. fairlife milk is filtered into five components (water, butterfat, protein, vitamins & minerals, lactose) and then recombined in different proportions. So there is no need to add proteins, calcium powders or artificial sweeteners, it's all about proportions.

Brandon's dad (or papa as we call him around here) who grew up on a dairy farm in Iowa, was here visiting us the week that we first stocked our fridge with fairlife milk & he loved learning about their story & mission behind their brand. fairlife grows their own crops to feed their cows & they never use growth hormones, and they pride themselves on giving their cows a happy & healthy life. If you've ever fed an apple to a happy cow, you know how amazing this is!

So the next time you are in the grocery store overwhelmed with the number of milk choices, you can feel confident in knowing what an amazing company you are supporting & even better tasting milk you can get with fairlife.

This post is in partnership with fairlife, thank you for supporting the brands that support us!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Living Room Planning + Inspiration

It's almost move in day, and we are so excited to share a little sneak peek of the room we plan to spend the most time in, our living space!! This room totally sold me on the house from day one, the tall ceilings, skylights & the big open windows looking over the deck & horse pastures in our back yard. I thought I would share a little bit about our planning process, and a bit about what we want to see in this room once it is finished!

In this living room, since the layout is quite different from our old one, we knew that our side chaise sectional wouldn't look quite right in here. We decided to move that one upstairs to our media room, and since we wanted to use our gorgeous charcoal Jonathan Louis chair in this room, we wanted to find a matching sofa for it. We ordered a few swatches, thinking maybe a complimentary light grey or cream would be a good fit, but just couldn't get over this cozy charcoal linen, so we opted for that again in the coordinating Clarice sofa. It is beyond my wildest dreams, and I can't even handle how well it works in this room. I was a little worried that it would be too dark, but I absolutely love it & feel like the durability of this color is going to be such a great fit! Thinking a few of these pillows & a soft jute rug would accessorize it perfectly. Or better yet, maybe I can get Brandon to agree to something pink! ;)

I also love that the wiring for cable is on the opposite wall, and not above the fireplace, which makes me so excited to decorate (especially for the holidays!!!) with mirrors and greenery and such, instead of a television that is most likely displaying a brightly colored image of doc mcstuffins. My media cabinet I thrifted a few weeks ago, and my parents found me this 36 inch vintage bread bowl on the mantle while they were scouring flea markets across the midwest last week. Still torn on what to do with the brick, part of me wants to add some thick white grout, or maybe paint the brick white or black, but until we move everything in, I think it will stay as is. I do love it! Curtains will go up this weekend after we move in (officially!!) and I am excited to do a large gallery wall behind the tv to help it blend in a bit.

So, just for fun, sharing a few of my favorite living room/family room inspiration photos, I am on a mad hunt for this chandelier at an affordable price, if you have a suggestion, pleeeease let me know. I am in love!

1 / 2 / 3 / 4

I feel like the style of this house is so much more ME than the one we currently live in, although I am having major goodbye issues and really feel like I will love our current house for EVER. I'm so excited for our new journey, even though we really feel like we are in way over our heads right now. And I don't think I say this enough, but thank you all for your constant streams of support & encouragement, you'll never know how much it means to me & my family, but it is so appreciated & we just love you all to pieces.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Shop Spotlight: Free Babes

Happy Monday, friends!! So excited to share a little bit about one of my very favorite shops EVER today, the complete & utter beauty that is Free Babes! We have been huge fans of Free Babes since the very beginning, even got the chance to collaborate on a bow line earlier this Summer.

We love the hand-tied quality, the gorgeous fabrics & textures, and most of all, the message behind the brand, classic bows for adventurous souls. It just doesn't get much sweeter than this!

Today marks the launch of their Fall collection, which just might be their very best yet. I am obsessed with the black & white gingham, orange swiss dot & of course all of the darling florals from Rifle Paper! Be sure to check them out & support one of our very favorite handmade shops!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday, friends!!! So excited for the weekend, even though it mostly consists of packing & working on the new house, I am happy to just be HOME! It has been the craziest week over here, we had some major storms & lightning that destroyed some of our electronics & trees (not ideal in the middle of selling your house), plus quite a few setbacks on the kitchen at the new house. Our kids have been bouncing off the walls coming down from their vacation high, and I think a little weekending is just what we need! I can barely form thoughts these days so I thought I would share a few fun Friday favorites, starting with my little side chair I found on Craigslist (retails here) earlier this week!! Loving this chair in the entryway & it's seriously making me so excited to move in!! I can't wait to fill this space up with frames!

Completely in LOVE with these tutu ballet dresses for Fall, I got the girls a few in each color & cannot get over how cute & affordable they are!

Craving a good salad, adding this Autumn Cobb Salad to our weekend menu.

The perfect booties to transition from Summer to Fall!

Obsessed with these pajamas, I got them last week on sale for the girls & totally want them in my size.

Loving this DIY firepit tutorial, I need to find an old washing machine (and learn how to weld) asap! ;)

And last, for those of you who asked on Snapchat about the vintage cursive alphabet print that I had framed, you'll never believe that it is just a sheet of wrapping paper that found here for less than $5! So fun for a nursery or playroom & fits perfectly inside a $15 Ikea poster frame!

What are you currently loving, I would love to hear! Wishing you all a happy weekend!!! XO

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

My Brother's Wedding

This beautiful barn wedding in small town Iowa was one of the most beautiful that I have ever been to. My brother & his beautiful bride created such a gorgeous, laid back atmosphere, and you couldn't help but feel in love. In fact, their wedding hashtag was #udderlyinlove (seriously how cute?!). It was on a small farm, in a beautiful wedding barn, with the most perfect weather & sunset that anyone could ever ask for. 

Their ceremony didn't start until 7:30, so the sun was beginning to set during their vows. Everyone came out early to mingle, they had their photos done early in the day, and hung out with everyone during cocktail hour before the ceremony began, which I thought was so fun of them to do! They had a beverage & popcorn station at the front of the lawn to take with you to your seat, I've never had a beer during a wedding ceremony before, pretty much the best way to treat your guests!! ;) They walked down the aisle to one of their best friends singing "Thinking Out Loud" (perfection!) and instead of a unity candle, they planted a tree. So so so cute, I cried through the entire thing.

One of our most "hot mess" family photos of all time but I just love it so much because it was honestly such a beautiful night & we were so happy to be there with all of our family. 

I was so excited to do a wedding chalkboard program for them, which they propped up against a ladder & flanked with burlap bags full of hydrangeas. We also made them a "MR" and "MRS" set of cornhole boards for their wedding gift, which they added to all of the yard games like yard jenga, horseshoes, etc. for guests to play between the wedding and reception. Every little detail was so sweet & thoughtful, big buckets of baby's breath, an old typewriter for the guest book & well wishes, and an old fashioned soft serve ice cream bar instead of wedding cake. The night ended just as it should, us with the bride & groom and the rest of my family, passing around giant bottles of wine to finish, barefoot & rapping pitbull. Take me back!! It was just perfection, I am so proud of my baby brother & my new sister in law.

Congratulations Jordan & Emily, we love you two to pieces & wish you all the best!!! :)

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Iowa trip & our vow to never roadtrip ever again.

We came home late last night from our ten day trip to Iowa, I can't really put into words the amount of chaos that went on & how happy we are to be in our own beds. We had planned to head back for my brothers wedding and just stay for a few days, but in recent news of both of grandparents having some health issues, we decided to make it a longer trip so we could spend more time with them. We are SO glad that we did, and know that all of us will cherish that extra time together. On the other side of things, it feels like we have been gone for six weeks & I feel like it will take me just as long to recover from it.
Fourteen hours in the car is WAY too long for three kids. We left Saturday afternoon, and were going to attempt to make it to St. Louis, but our wheels were falling off the bus by Nashville so we just stopped there. Word to the wise, never do the short part of the trip first, because by the time we were strapping the girls back in their car seats in the morning, they were screaming before we even left town, and we had 8 hours to go. We somehow made it to Iowa in one piece, but the same can not be said about the return trip. Harper got bored and stuck her gum in her hair, Eloise painted her entire car seat with an ice cream sundae & Claire shattered my iphone. At one point Claire & Eloise were screaming as loud as they could, while Harper was laughing hysterically with wide eyes. It was fucking bananas.
Did I mention how happy we are to be home? :)

We started the trip staying with Brandon's parents so we could visit all of our family, the girls had so much fun seeing their cousins & we had fun doing a little food tour of the midwest eating all of our favorite foods. Happy Joes, Maid Rites & sweet corn are some of the best things about the midwest! We did slip-n-slides, sparklers, pools, sandboxes, sidewalk chalk & shucked dozens of ears of corn. Relaxed for movie nights & woke up extra early for good pancake breakfasts. We always wish we could be closer to our family there because they are so much fun & such good hosts, we love them all to pieces!!
We took the girls to Adventureland, our favorite childhood amusement park in Iowa, and ended up having a ton of fun! The park is so kid friendly, the weather was beautiful & there was tons of shade.  And only two rides had to be stopped to let Eloise off because she was crying & screaming her head off, so we considered that a huge success.

There's something so special about getting to show your kids places that mean so much to you, especially by the time they get old enough to appreciate it. We loved showing Harper places we used to work or spend time together when we were dating.
We stayed with some of our best friends in Des Moines who have kids close in age to ours, got some good bagels for breakfast (love this little coffee klatch reading the auto trader) & visited a few more college friends before heading to southern Iowa for my Brother's wedding. I will share lots of beautiful pictures & details from their day, which so stunning it needs its own post! ;)
It was a much needed break from blogging & most social media (I just can't quit you snapchat) but hoping to return to regularly scheduled programming very soon! But first, coffee.
Have a great week, friends!!  

Friday, August 5, 2016

House Progress, Day 14!

I'm so excited to share this before & (almost) after of the back exterior! The one thing I really hated about our house, which almost made me not come see it in the first place, was the (flesh colored) exterior. The neighborhood has some really beautiful homes, but this exterior was so dated & well, just plain ugly. We were confident that we could give it a much needed facelift & couldn't be happier with the outcome!

I mentioned before, we had a very dated arch window that already needed replaced, so we actually had it completely taken out. We have an AMAZING carpenter, he did our screened porch & pergola in our current home, and so far has done an incredible job with this window & the giant deck that is bigger than our very first apartment! The deck is almost done, we have to wait a few weeks before we can paint & stain, but we are loving the updated look & modern black spindles. We had the exterior painted white, and decided last minute (after maybe a few beers) to throw some black paint on the window trim to see how it looked. And I love it!!!! I still have a million more windows to do, but I am obsessed with the outcome. We ordered a few of these overszied barn lights (and gave them a fresh coat of black matte spray paint) to replace the old lanterns, and are on the hunt for a wooden screen door that we will also paint black. 

On the far end of the deck, we put up an 8 foot privacy wall to give that end a little more character, that we will use to string lights on & hang some planters, and hopefully turn into a super cozy seating area.

In the kitchen, cabinet boxes are finished & a few of our appliances are installed. So far our biggest hurdle was installing the sink, since we didn't use an Ikea sink with the cabinets, we had to do a little customization & add in some reinforcements. I am SO excited for this sink!! Next comes our cabinet doors, which again will still need painted before installation, and once they're installed, we will be able to have our fabricator come out to measure for our countertops. Seems so far away! ;) We chose a frosty white honed quartz, I can't wait to see the contrast against our grey/green cabinets!! 

And that's a wrap!! So exciting, yet majorly overwhelming right now. I feel like we have so much on our plates but somehow it all feels so right!! 
Hope you all have a happy weekend!!! XO