Fall Craving: Leopard

If you haven’t already noticed, leopard is everywhere for fall. I have always loved leopard because while it is a bold print, it is still really easy to wear as you can truly wear it like a neutral and pair it with anything. I have several leopard pieces in my closet, but I’m definitely looking to add a dress and a sweater or two. Here’s a few pieces I’ve been loving…

LeopardLove-1LeopardLove-2

 

One – This looks so much more expensive than it is! I just ordered this one.

Two – A furry leopard coat is a must have. This one is under $100.

Three – A minimal and sophisticated take on the trend.

Four – A splurge, but these are seriously the cutest.

Five – A classic style and cashmere at a great price.

Six – The wear with anything skirt.

Seven – I love the dark print and balloon sleeves on this one.

Eight – Love this fun, bold print.

Nine – The perfect fall bootie.

Ten – A great neutral taupe and super affordable.

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Throwback To Cole’s Plants vs Zombies 8th Birthday Party

Throwback To Cole’s Plants vs Zombies 8th Birthday Party

As Cole’s 9th birthday party is creeping up on us and party prep is in full swing, I’ve been reminiscing about birthdays past and I thought it would be fun to do a throwback post to his 8th birthday party from last year! Plus it’s Friday the 13th so sharing his zombie party seemed fitting.

Every year Cole picks his party theme and last year I was a little concerned I wasn’t going to be able to come up with anything when he told me he wanted a Plants vs Zombies party (if you aren’t familiar it’s a popular video game!). While I think his “Where the Wild Things Are” 6th Birthday Party will always be my favorite – this ended up being one of my favorite party themes and was a ton of fun to put together.

I always keep food pretty simple for my kids’ parties (the kids are usually more interested in playing than eating!) but the brain jello was definitely a hit. To keep the kids entertained we had a bounce house, and a zombie survival station where the kids could arm themselves with guns, glow sticks, and candy that fit in with the theme. The guns were a huge hit and the kids formed zombie teams and spent hours playing! They also made for a fun party favor to take home (I’m even thinking of getting them again for this year’s party). We also had a “jalapeño piñata” – because you can never have too much candy.

Plants vs Zombies Party Decor:

Birthday banner

Tablecloths/Plates/Cups: Zurchers

Balloons

Traffic cones

Galvanized serving tray

Galvanized bin

Galvanized caddy (similar)

Brain jello mold

Artificial sunflowers & vases: Dollar Tree

Candy jars with galvanized tray (also here)

Dart shooters: Dollar Tree

Glow sticks

Beware of zombies sign

“Keep out” streamer (similar)

Bloody handprints

Chili pepper piñata

Cake by Albertsons Bakery

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Life Lately

It has been awhile since I’ve blogged! After returning from our trip to Wyoming school started and life has been CRAZY. The first few weeks of school are always chaotic trying to get into our routine and adjust to all of the extra commitments that we have. I always say we aren’t going to join every club and volunteer for every committee…but like a crazy woman I always end up doing it anyway. (Say hello to room mom, party planner, reading volunteer, art auction committee member, soccer mom…) Yes I’m insane – but I do love getting to be so involved with my kids’ schools and activities.

The kids’ first few weeks of school have actually been going great for them. They are off to a great start and really enjoying their school year so far.

Cole’s shirt // shorts // shoesI love Cole’s first week of school musings (#futurephilosopher)

Evan’s shirt // shorts // shoes

Mom and dad also had our first day back to school with back to school nights for each of the kids’ schools. I wore this outfit to Cole’s and this cute top is such a steal. It reminds me of this Reformation top for a fraction of the price.

Top // Skirt (H&M – old, similar) // Sandals // Bag // Earrings

We’ve also been squeezing in some time for fun! One of my favorite annual Boise events is the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic which was a Labor Day weekend. This year the kids even got to go for a tethered balloon ride!

We also celebrated one of our dear family friend’s kids birthdays! They had the cutest little under the sea theme pool party.

I have some organizing projects I’m trying to get finished with the kids back to school – and one big one I finally finished was my entry way closet (it was becoming a “Monica closet” situation). I had all of the kid’s school art and memorabilia crammed in there and I have been meaning to organize it into boxes for each of them…and I finally got around to it (it’s only taken a few years). These boxes are great for storage!

Boxes

I’m also starting to work on 2 of our biggest projects this time of year…Cole’s birthday and Halloween! Cole’s birthday is coming up very soon and I’m really excited about his theme and what we have planned this year. I think it will be a lot of fun! We have also started looking at Halloween costumes and getting ideas of what they will be this year. It’s one of our favorite holidays and we love doing a family theme, so it’s never too soon for us to start planning! We had lots of fun at the Halloween store recently getting some inspiration.

No we aren’t doing these – but these masks were hysterical!

Evan has been wanting to be like his big brother and do Taekwondo for ages, and he’s finally old enough. He just started a few weeks ago and it is the cutest thing ever. The beaming on his face the first time he put on his uniform was priceless.

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End Of Summer Getaway To Jackson Wyoming

End Of Summer Getaway To Jackson Wyoming

Warning…very long, photo heavy post ahead! Our family had decided awhile back that we really wanted to end our summer on a high note and take a vacation somewhere during our final week of break. We had thrown around a few different location ideas over the past few months, and ultimately decided a few weeks ago to take a trip to Jackson. We have heard so many amazing things about it, plus as it sits right on the Idaho border, it isn’t too far of a destination.

Dress // Sandals // Hat (Rag & Bone, old – similar) // Bracelet // Bag

For our first evening in Jackson, we went to dinner at Calico. I had heard that it was a great place to take kids as they have a huge field full of balls & toys right next to their outdoor patio, plus their kids meals are very affordable. What I hadn’t heard as much about was the food…and we were in for a real treat! I booked the restaurant thinking it would be a great place for the kids to be able to get their wiggles out after a long day of traveling, and thought the food would probably just be okay. This turned out to be our favorite meal from the entire trip. We shared a caprese salad and I had the shrimp linguine and everything was absolutely incredible. This restaurant is a must on a trip to Jackson – be sure to call early for reservations to get a patio seat.

After dinner, we headed downtown to see the famous elk antler arches in the town square and do a bit of shopping. Teton Toys is an incredible toy store and they have a huge selection. My kids settled on toy cap guns and stick on mustaches so they could feel like real Wyoming cowboys! After shopping we went to CocoLove for a nightcap dessert. I had the Mexican hot chocolate and a few chocolates (the lavender was incredible!), while the kids had gelato.

On the next day of our trip we headed to the Snow King Mountain Resort for a day of fun! I highly recommend purchasing a Big King Pass for all of the activities, and if you buy online in advance you get a 10% discount as well. My kids loved riding the Cowboy Coaster and the Alpine Slide over and over, and Cole’s favorite activity of the day was the Treetop Adventure.

My Tee // Shorts // Sneakers // Sunglasses

In the evening we headed back to the town square for the nightly shootout and dinner at the Million Dollar Cowboy Steakhouse. The shootout is the longest running shootout in the country and is held nightly during the summer at 6:00 pm. It only takes about 15 minutes, and is definitely a must do at least once. My boys really loved it! Also make sure to stop at Moo’s for their amazing homemade ice cream.

My Top & Skirt (The Kooples, old – similar top, skirt) // Booties (Marc Fisher, old – similar) // Bag

The next day we hopped in the car and spent the day touring Grand Teton National Park. If you are going to drive yourself, I highly recommend purchasing the Gypsy Guide Grand Teton app which will tell you what you are seeing and all the history of the land as you drive – as well as the key places to stop. Our highlights were stopping in at Menors Ferry and shopping in the old general store, taking a boat ride across Jenny Lake to hike to Hidden Falls, stopping at Mormon Row, and of course spotting wildlife! I still can’t get over the awe inspiring beauty of this place and can’t wait to go back.

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For dinner we headed back into town for Sushi at King Sushi! You wouldn’t think Jackson would have great sushi and is more of a steak and potatoes kind of place…but the sushi here is some of the best I’ve had. It is also an old historical blacksmith building which makes the ambiance even cooler.

In the evening we put on our western finest and headed to the Jackson Hole Rodeo! Little known fact about me…I grew up in a small farming and ranch community in Oregon and grew up riding horses and competing in local riding clubs, horse shows & 4-H. I was also a rodeo princess of our local professional rodeo my senior year of high school! So it’s kind of fun taking my kids to rodeos and showing them a bit of how their mom grew up (they think it’s quite funny!). The kids even got to compete by joining all of the other kids to attempt to grab a bandanna off a sheep to win prizes. It was absolutely hysterical and just made the rodeo even more fun for them.

My Poncho (Shopbop, old – similar) // Jeans // Booties // Hat (Rag & Bone, old – similar)

The next day we decided to have a low key day with a trip to the National Wildlife Museum. While there is of course some incredible wildlife art – the museum is surprisingly a lot of fun for kids as they have a children’s gallery where kids can create their own art. I also highly recommend downloading the museum app as you can play animal noises that go along with the paintings you are viewing (which keeps it more interesting for kids). They also have a restaurant at the museum which is quite good – and they have a really fun “paint a cookie” dessert.

img_5229Dress // Sandals // Bag

In the afternoon we headed downtown to walk around a bit more and do some more shopping! Altitude is a really fun boutique and I also love the Pendleton store (I grew up near Pendleton so their famous wool is sentimental to me!). We also stopped at this fun art alley for a few silly selfies.

For our last dinner in Jackson we decided to do the Bar T 5 Chuckwagon Dinner Show. This kind of thing could easily veer into being cheesy…but this was far from it. The whole experience was easily a highlight of our trip. The people were so nice, enthusiastic and talented, the food was great, the scenery was beautiful, and it really made for an all around fun and memorable evening. The history and story about how this show came to be is also fascinating. If you visit Jackson this is a must do – and we will be doing this again on our next visit!

Our horse team Bob and Sherman!Jacket // Top // Jeans // Booties // Hat (Rag & Bone, old – similar)

On our last morning in Jackson we went to Persephone Bakery for brunch before heading home. A friend who had lived in Europe for a period of time and had eaten at Persephone told us we must go as it easily rivals any patisserie in France. It did not disappoint! We tried a variety of pastries including the huckleberry croissant and the lavender lemon loaf, as well as a lavender honey latte, and an egg sandwich. Every single thing was incredible.

This was somewhat of a spur of the moment trip, and also easily one of our favorite family vacations we’ve ever taken. Jackson is truly a gem, and we’ve already decided this needs to become an annual tradition for us. I can’t think of a better way for us to have ended our summer break!Signature

Cool Backpacks For Back To School

Cool Backpacks For Back To School

Evan’s backpack

My kids still aren’t at ages where they care a ton about picking out their back to school wardrobe, but one thing they sure get excited about shopping for is their backpacks! Today I wanted to round up some really cool backpacks that are sure to get your kiddos at least a little excited about heading back to school. There’s so many cool options out there this year with fun prints, 3-D styles, and even glow in the dark. There’s also some really affordable options starting at under $10!

One // Two // Three // Four // Five // Six // Seven // Eight // Nine // Ten // Eleven // Twelve // Thirteen // Fourteen // Fifteen // Sixteen // Seventeen // Eighteen

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Life Lately

Wow…we are really in the home stretch and coming to the end of summer. We only have 2 weeks left, and with those weeks filled with camps and activities it is going to fly by. On one hand I’m ready to get back to our routine and structure. On the other…at the risk of sounding like one of those annoying moms…I’m not ready for the fun with the kids to be over. I’m always reminded of the fact that you only get 18 summers with your kids, and this one just flew by way too quickly. I’m so grateful for all the fun and memories we’ve made, which I have to constantly remind myself of when I start longing for time to slow down.

We’ve been trying to cram in as much time at the waterpark as we can and have gone several times.

If you’ve not tried Marysia swimwear – I highly recommend it! Nobody nails the scallop swimsuit like they do, and the fabric is so pretty (it’s more like a knit vs a traditional swimsuit) that it can easily double as a body suit as well. One thing to note – when the suit is dry it does tend to not stay in place well and things can get a bit…cheeky. But once wet it sticks to your body and stays in place.

Swimsuit (also here and version without laces here) // Sarong // Sunglasses // Hat

As I wrote about in another post, we went to see Witness for the Prosecution at the Shakespeare Festival. I wore this shirt dress that is such an incredible buy at under $50.

Dress // Sandals // Bag

Evan went to one last summer camp this past week! He went to space camp and he learned so much and he’s been so excited sharing what he’s learned with us. The kids wear swimsuits to camp because they also get to spend lots of time outside playing in water and his teacher sent me the cutest pictures of him lounging and drying off with his favorite stuffed pet Jingle. Can’t even handle the cuteness.

We took an afternoon and went to do our back to school supply shopping! I love making this a fun day with the kids every year by going shopping and then going out to eat or for ice cream after. Cole loves getting to take his list and run around picking out all of his own supplies, and even though it is a reminder that summer is almost over, it has become a day my kids really look forward to.

I wore this cute little puff sleeve top that is under $20 and comes in tons of color options.

Top // Shorts // Bag

We finally went to go see The Lion King over the weekend. It has been one of Cole’s favorite movies for years, and he and I even went to see the Broadway show when they were touring and came to Boise last year. I wore this tie waist white tee that is on sale – I love a white tee with a little extra detail.

Tee // Jeans // Sandals // Sunglasses// Bag

Cole is going to robotics camp this week which I think will be a lot of fun for him – plus it has the added bonus of forcing us back on a schedule pretty close to our school schedule. It was a little tough getting everyone up and out the door on time this morning, so fingers crossed we get adjusted quickly!

Have a great Monday!

What I Bought At The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

I’m not gonna lie – the anniversary sale this year wasn’t a whole lot of fun to shop. I (like many people!) had tons of orders canceled, received someone else’s order by mistake, and had a shipping snafu where my order got shipped somewhere else by mistake and then returned (and cancelled). Despite it being a headache – I did manage to get a few really nice, basic pieces that I feel will be a great base to my fall wardrobe. And I most importantly was able to get my kids the North Face coats that we loved so much last year in a size up for when they outgrow their current ones!

Cashmere sweater (also comes in gray) // Jeans // Booties

This sweater is a splurge, but Vince really has incredible quality cashmere. (I am wearing a size small) My favorite N sale purchase out of all the years I’ve been shopping was a Vince cashmere sweater I bought years ago (and still have!). I always feel a high quality, simple, classic piece like this is worth spending a little extra on. And I think this color will be so pretty for fall (and kinda perfect for Thankgiving!). The only pair of jeans I ordered from the sale (and really wanted) ended up getting sold out and my order was cancelled. So I ordered these on Amazon Prime day…and I looove them! I’m wearing a size 4/27 – they don’t have a whole lot of stretch so size up if you are in between sizes. I had thought about getting the popular Vince Camuto booties (that sold out in 2 seconds) but I honestly like the color of these booties better.

Tee // Cardigan (purchased last year but available again this year) // Jeans // Booties

I love the little extra detail on the shoulder of this tee – which makes it cute on its own but will also be cute paired under cardigans come fall. (It is also a pretty great A.LC. Karlie Tee dupe!) It fits a bit fitted but not tight – but if you are in between sizes or want a looser fit I would size up. (I’m wearing a small) I really had my fingers crossed these booties wouldn’t be cancelled – and I got lucky that they were the one item I actually got fulfilled out of my first order placed! (I would say they fit true to size) They are sold out in snakeskin, but they are available in a few other colors. I purchased this Madewell cardigan last year which they brought back this year. I have it in a few colors and if it pops up available in your size – I highly recommend it! (I’m wearing an xs)

Bodysuit // Jeans // Booties

This body suit is another great staple piece, and reminds me of the more expensive Free People version. I’m wearing a size small and it fits me perfectly – but I would say that if I was much taller I think it would be a bit short in the torso (I’m 5’4″).

Pajamas

I bought a pair of these at last years N sale – and they have become my favorite pair. They do run a little big, but I still buy my true size small as I love them a bit oversized. If you missed out on these – check back periodically. Nordstrom has these on sale every so often.

Top // Bottoms // Sneakers

I really needed a cozy sweatsuit to wear around that house, that also looks put together enough to wear if we have company or if I need to run a quick errand or school run. I was pleasantly surprised by how soft it is, and I will definitely be wearing this a ton come fall. I’m wearing a size small in both pieces.

Pullover // Bottoms // Sneakers // Jacket

I had my eye on this pullover ever since seeing it in the catalogue. I had gone back and forth on getting it, but after all the sweaters I ordered got cancelled I figured I would get this instead. I am always looking for athleisure pieces for “mom life” outfits – and this really is kinda perfect for throwing on with leggings or sweats. (I’m wearing a size small) I also wanted a new pair of Nikes and decided to go with gray instead of my usual black, and I love the rose gold detail on these. I also had ordered this jacket the first day of the sale and it was cancelled. One day I was randomly scrolling to see if anything was re-stocked and this was there (in all colors & sizes!). Of course by the end of the day it was sold out again but not before I snagged it! I’ve seen it pop back up available a few times since I bought it so keep your eye out for restocks on this one. This jacket is perfect for school runs, errands, and even skiing! I would say it runs true to size, but I sized up to a medium so I can layer thicker pieces under it come winter.

BPSweatsuitTop // Bottoms

Because I’m really feeling the love for sweatsuits, I ordered this set too…and something happened on shipment and the carrier sent it to the wrong state and it ended up getting returned to sender. And it sold out right after I ordered it. I spoke to customer service and they agreed to honor the sale price if it comes back in stock after the sale is over (I have a feeling it will as most sale items come back) and if so I will be re-ordering this.

Spanx // Candles

In lieu of any lingerie picks this year, I decided to grab a new pair of Spanx! I have a pair of bottoms but not a full body set like this. And it is nice not paying full price for Spanx which don’t typically go on sale. I also grabbed a set of candles for the house. These are such a fun splurge and a great price for a little luxury item.

Big Boys Coat // Little Boys Coat // Little Boys Jeans

I did manage to get the boys the North Face coats we love so much in bigger sizes for them to grow into. The big boys jeans sold out SO fast, but I was able to get Evan a pair. Joe’s makes great jeans for kids. I have a pair that has gone through both kids and still look brand new. I’m kinda bummed that these were gone so quickly as the price was amazing and both boys really do need jeans – but The Rack often gets these as well so I’ll be checking there! I like these jeans so much I would even be willing to pay full price and get Cole a pair once they come back into stock.

Kid’s Patagonia

I bought Evan this jacket last year and it still fits him (and is still in great shape!). This is a great little cozy jacket and I highly recommend it if it comes back into stock. It also makes for a cute mommy and me look with the ladies Patagonia!

The sale still has a few more days before prices go back up, and I may decide to grab a few more goodies I’ve had my eye on that are still in stock. Here are my favorites of what’s left!

My last minute picks of the sale…

NordsSale-1NordsSale-2One // Two // Three // Four // Five // Six // Seven // Eight // Nine // Ten // Eleven // Twelve // Thirteen

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