Tuesday, April 16, 2019

5 Simple Changes I've Made in Honor of Earth Day

Today, I'm sharing 5 green changes I've made over the last handful of months, and thought with Earth Day right around the corner that now would be just the right time to highlight them. My consciousness over climate change has been heightened 100 fold after reading this book, which was so (scarily) eye opening and such a page turning read. I can't recommend it enough. 

1. I've finally jumped aboard the reusable grocery bags train, which is one of the easiest changes you too can make! On the days I forget them, for whatever reason, I make 100% sure to take my plastic bags back to the recycling bins placed outside the grocery store. They also accept produce bags, Amazon packaging, and plastic bags from other stores.

2. Diva Cup: This one's self explanatory and I won't go into more detail here, except to say that it is worth ALL the hype. Absolutely no waste, and so much less risk than traditional tampons, which go straight to the landfill and are non-biodegradable. 

3. The book above mentioned that a third of all the food produced in the world goes to waste. When we waste food, we also waste all the energy and water it takes to grow, harvest, transport, and package it. And if food goes to the landfill and rots, it produces methane—a greenhouse gas even more potent than carbon dioxide. Which really made me pay more attention to how much we were throwing away every week. This one is considerably difficult with 2 picky toddlers, but I've truly come to make the amount of food I think they will ACTUALLY eat. If they want more, I make more at that time. I've also always been a bit of a vegetarian and don't eat meat often, but even Matt has cut it way back. Which is better for us and better for the earth alike. Finally, it's also very beneficial to buy local produce, especially with farmers markets starting to pop up in the warmer weather months.

4. Recycling the right way. Which means only including items that are accepted and rinsing cans and jars and reattaching lids. The entire recycling batch can go to waste if one person doesn't follow the rules. Also, fine print on packaging or a simple internet search will sometimes provide you with a recycling program for items (often with a prepaid label provided for free shipping) that aren't accepted into your local recycling collection. Examples: Crayola markers and GoGo Squeeze Pouches. Take advantage of these!

5. Two of my recent and now most used items are reusable ziplock bags and a reusable water bottle that I love. The ziplocks go into the kids' lunches or thrown into my purse on weekends when we're heading out for the day. They're washable and durable, and save us from tossing so. much. plastic. Similarly, I used to drink sparkling water by the case, and while I recycled the cans, it was pricey and still produced waste. I now fill my water bottle to the top and add lemon juice, and drink it throughout the day. 

Let me know if you too have made any of the changes, above! If you have other simple changes to share, please do! Sometimes changing one small habit is all it takes to make a positive change for the environment. Happy Earth Day, friends!

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

The Best of Amazon's Jewelry

Today, I'm bringing you my favorite Amazon jewelry finds. Some I have and love, others I have bookmarked and saved, but ALL are so versatile and neutral. It's all about the basics for me. Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments, below!

Friday, April 5, 2019

March Amazon Favorites

It's that time again! My round up of my absolute favorite Amazon purchases or finds from the month of March. Here we go!

1. Veggie Wash: Life changing stuff right here. If you think rinsing fruits and veggies with water is cleaning them, wait until you see the water that remains after you soak them in this Veggie Wash.

2. ROC Deep Wrinkle Filler: This stuff is pure magic, and I swear I saw results overnight. I use this in laugh lines and forehead creases, and it softens both more than anything else I’ve ever tried.

3. Minimalist Earrings: These earrings in rose gold are what I wear anytime I dress up a little bit. I love how simple and easy they are, and they also get bonus points for being hypoallergenic, anti-tarnish, and super light weight.

4. ORLY Nailpolish: This was just raved about on a thread I was following as the absolute perfect pink/nude polish. I have this ordered and can’t wait to try it.

5. Espadrille Sandals: I adore these in the perforated 2-Gray shade. Such a fun twist to traditional espadrilles, with a platform that isn’t too high.

6. Pantry or Refrigerator Organization: 'Tis time for spring cleaning, and the pantry is the first on our list. These bins will finally keep all of our food organized by type.

7. Springy Pajamas: So comfortable and cozy for spring.

8. Gingham Swimsuit: My pick for a month and a half from now when we open our pool, hooray!

9. Doormat: A pretty and understated doormat to pair with some potted flowers to spruce up your front porch.

Friday, March 29, 2019

A Letter to August on his 3rd Birthday

Dear August,

You’re three whole years today. The minute I first saw you is forever etched into my brain, a still frame in my mind, and I swear I still see that same baby face in you every time I hold you or rock you, even though you hysterically giggle and tell me, “Mama, I’m a BIG BOY, not a baby” whenever I tell you that you’re my baby, always. 

You’re funny, smart, loving, and beyond adorable. You have the blondest hair (still) that’s thick and unruly, and the prettiest greenish-blueish eyes that remind me of the ocean. You’re slowly leaning out, turning into a boy, but when you smile, you say, “Cheeks!” instead of “Cheese!”, which is the best thing ever since your chubby cheeks are still very much there. You have a little gap in your two bottom teeth that I find so impossibly sweet, and your smiles are even better because of it. You’re your big brother’s shadow and the two of you are the best of friends (or, of course, the worst of enemies) and constantly fight and make up, even though you tell him, “I’m never playing with you for the rest of my life” just about every hour. Some of my happiest days have been watching you two run and chase and wrestle each other, pretending and imagining and growing together. 

You’re a performer and there’s nothing that you love more than to make those people closest to you laugh. You’re larger than life in personality AND in size (really, in the 90th percentiles for both height and weight), but at the same time, you’re my gentle giant. You’re really shy around new people, and cling or hide behind mama for a LONG time until you get your bearings. Strangers aren’t even allowed to look at you without you hiding away, which is hard to believe knowing how huge your personality really is. You’re very much a mama’s boy, my littlest love, and remind me of a fawn, running out just far enough into the world to explore and adventure, but then quickly turning back and running to hide in my legs. 

You shine in school and report back everything you do. You’re so good at independent play—slipping away, but still staying where we can see you—to lay on the ground to play superheroes, making them talk to each other to save the day. Your imagined-up dialogues are the very best, and I can’t jot them down fast enough in an attempt to try to remember them forever. Batman is still your idol and most of your play is revolved around him through figurines or LEGOs. The Batman theme is on repeat for your birthday again this year, and no other suggestions were even entertained by you. Your birthday wish is for LEGO mini-figures, and lots of them, to rip apart and reassemble, over and over again. This is one of your very favorite things, so much so that Oskar named your little table the “breaking table” because that’s where you pull all of your LEGOs apart. You also love Imaginext houses, Play-Doh, foam swords, building towers, playing catch, or riding your tricycle. Such classic little boy things. 

You’re still a good eater and love nothing more than olives and pickles, which makes us laugh every time. Other favorites are meatballs, muffins, string cheese, and apples, not peeled and served whole. You’ll still put down a plate of broccoli, but we’ll see if that continues this year. 

We recently moved you into a big boy bed and held our breath, but it was a total non-event, as smooth as can be. You haven’t quite figured out that you can leave your bed on your own and sit up and call for us when you wake up. You’re still on an 8:30pm-6am schedule, with a 1.5-2ish hour nap in the afternoons. You sleep with a puppy dog stuffed animal that wears a Batman costume that you named “Bat Pup”, and I dare you to find me something cuter than how hard you cuddle him when you’re asleep.

One of my favorite things about you is how easily and how hard you laugh. It’s so contagious and I can’t get enough. I think your personality is so magnetic because of this, and I hope you never lose it. You also love so hard and want to be close to us, always hugging, climbing into a lap, hand holding, or telling us, “I love my whooooooooole family.” There’s nothing better in this world than that.

You’ve been to Finland 3 times and to Denmark once in your little life, and we’re heading to Finland and the Netherlands again in a few months. It’s not always easy, but you’re undoubtedly the cutest little traveler. You’re a story teller, and your imagination comes up with the craziest things that you make sound so convincingly real—one of my favorite parts about this age. You talk a mile a minute, with words that are bigger and far beyond your years, telling me things like, “Did you know trees make air?”, or “Actually, I love you to Mars AND to Pluto.” 

August, you’re an absolute joy, a bright light, the most loving little boy. Laughing with you is the best kind of laughing there is, and nothing has made me happier than to be your mama. Happy, happy 3rd birthday. May all your Batman wishes come true.


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