Thank you so much for taking the time to visit my blog! Please look around and see what my blog has to offer, from party inspiration, DIY craft tutorials, yummy treat ideas, and so much more! And make sure to pin on Pinterest! If you click on the Free Printables tab on the top of this page, you will find all of my posts with free printables. Also, if you would like to stay up-to-date with all of my new posts, subscribe by email (enter it on the right margin of this page) or like my Facebook page HERE. Have a blessed day!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Top 5 Travel Essentials

Happy President's Day everyone! 

It's hard to believe that the school year is more than halfway over!  Do you already have your summer vacations planned out?  We are not sure exactly what we are doing yet, but I have already been browsing online and looking at various websites to get ideas for our next summer vacation.

When Amy from Tripping.com asked me what travel essentials I would never leave home without, I instantly thought hand sanitizer and daily medications.  But then I thought more about it and I realized there are several more must-haves that I can never go on vacation without packing.  Check out my top 5 travel essentials and see if any of your must-have items are on my list!  They are not in particular order, but I usually travel with all of these 5 things.

1. DSLR Camera
Without a doubt, when going on vacation, I cannot leave home without my digital SLR camera.  I own a Nikon D3200 and even though I am not a trained photographer, this camera really takes amazing photos and makes it seem like I'm a pro!


I can catch my kids at their best moments, giving each other big hugs...


Or I can capture beautiful scenery to help remind us of the locations of our fun vacations...



And it is definitely a must-do to take a photo of famous international landmarks!

 
And even better, if I pack our tripod and camera remote control, I can take a picture of the entire family!


2. Swimsuits
Unless we are going on a ski trip, I almost always pack swimsuits.  They are small enough to throw into the luggage, because you never know if you want to just relax and spend the day on the beach or your hotel pool.


And both my kids are like little fish, they are great swimmers and could spend the whole day in the ocean or in a swimming pool.


3. Matching Family Attire
Ok, so I admit this is a little weird.  I probably add extra stress when it comes to packing our suitcases, but I pack a couple or more matching outfits for the family to wear. They don't have to match exactly, but I like to pick outfits that are in the same color scheme and that look good in photos, so I know for sure that our clothes will not be an issue and clash in the photos that I take.


Before packing these outfits, I usually lay them out on the floor and take a picture of the group of outfits so I remember them when we get to our destination.  If you need ideas, you can check out my Pinterest Board filled with family photo outfit ideas.


And if you end up not packing these matching outfits, you can always buy some during your vacation!


I think I already mentioned the following two travel essentials earlier, but here they are anyways...

4. Hand Sanitizer
Of course I am going to pack my handy dandy hand sanitizer.  There are germs everywhere, especially when we fly on an airplane, better safe than sorry, right?

5. Medications
This is the boring stuff, but any daily medications are packed into my carry-on bag so in case we get separated from our luggage, we still have our medications!

And finally, although it is not an actual "item" to pack.  I always go on a vacation with an open mindset and ready to say YES to adventure!!  Whether it's riding horses on the beach, going on a wooden raft down a river in Jamaica, and even doing a ropes course on a cruise ship and walking the plank over the middle of the ocean,  vacations are perfect for making incredible family memories!




So what travel essentials are on your list? Hope you have fun planning your next vacation!

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Monday, August 22, 2016

Summertime Christmas Party Inspiration

We survived the first week of school, woohoo!  Brody and Skylar both love their teachers and I am happy to report that my kids are currently enjoying school.  Skylar always loves going to school, but Brody prefers sleeping in, going on vacations, and the lazy days of summer.  So I was really surprised and happy to hear him say one morning before school last week, "I'm excited to go to school today".

Now that the kids are back in school, I finally have some time to blog again.  And since Christmas in July is a popular thing in the blogging world, I thought I would create an inspiration board for a summertime Christmas party.  I know it's August already, so I missed the whole "Christmas in July" fun, but in reality, living in Florida, it can feel like a summer day when December 25th comes around so you can use the inspiration for a winter Christmas party in Florida as well.



When it comes to planning any party, I instantly think of what the kids would want.  So when planning this inspiration board, I pictured a fun after-school play date in our back patio with Brody and Skylar and their friends.  So there would be lots of finger foods (both sweet and healthy), and frozen hot chocolate as their drinks (and dessert!). As for decor, I would use some fun polka dot and striped printables that I created for a family Christmas party a few years ago.  I am obsessed with polka dots and stripes when it comes to party decor! Just click on the links below to go to the original source of inspiration.


I found this super-cute card from Paperless Post that would match my polka-dot themed decor.  Click on the photo below to check it out, or go HERE to check out their whole Christmas card collection.

https://www.paperlesspost.com/paper/cards?q=turquoise%20christmas&card=28681

Hope this post inspires you to get ready for the holiday season, better early than late! :-)

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

First Day of School Photos 2016 - Free Printables

The summer has flown by!  We had an amazing time together as a family.  I hope to post more pictures of our UK trip and travel tips from our summer break.  In the meantime, it is time to get ready for back to school!  I've already seen back to school photos from friends and family on social media.  I love seeing their cute smiling faces with their new bookbags and lunchbags.  

As a tradition, I take first day of school pictures of Brody and Skylar.  It is hard to believe how much they have grown up and changed in the past few years.  Here are some pictures from the past...



If you need a printable to add to your back to school photos, just click HERE or the photo below and print what your need for your child!

https://app.box.com/s/u5271iz1x3av2lsw1509wfawka97pas9

I hope everyone has a wonderful first day back to school and an awesome school year!


Friday, July 8, 2016

Fashion Friday - Souvenir Tees


We are in the middle of summer vacation and feel so blessed to currently be spending our time in England right now.  We are in the lovely city of Bath, in the west country of England, near the border of Wales.  We actually spent a lovely day in Cardiff, Wales and fell in love with Wales and the beautiful castles of the country.  I knew that I wanted to buy a souvenir tee with the Welsh flag because how cool is it to have a national flag with a dragon on it!!?!

We enjoyed souvenir shopping and supporting the small, local shops (our usual purchases are stuffed animals selected by Brody and Skylar, and a Christmas ornament to hang on our Christmas tree identifying the wonderful places and cities we visit). The Welsh shirts were a bit pricey so we left Wales with just stuffed animals and an ornament.

However, right next door to our hotel in Bath, we have Primark. If you are not familiar with Primark, it is a European department store with very affordable apparel, shoes, accessories, and even home goods and snacks.  If you are on a budget, it is a great spot to purchase any items that you may have forgotten from home, and also a great spot to find souvenir tees from the local country you are visiting.  It is also my husband's favorite store to purchase skinny jeans! 

Just our luck, we found these cool tees in the boys department on sale for £1 each!  

Yes, £1!


I love that it even says "Cymru" which is "Wales" in Welsh.  Thankfully I was able to fit into the largest boy size which was 12-13 years old, and they also had sizes to fit Brody and Skylar.  Since it happened to be during the semi-finals of the Euro Cup, we wore our shirts proudly when Wales played Portugal earlier this week.  Unfortunately, Wales lost, but it was a fun match to watch at our hotel lobby with other hotel guests.

So next time you are in Europe and happen to be near a Primark, don't forget to check their t-shirt section where you might find a cheap souvenir!  Skylar and I paired our tees with basic black leggings and boots while Brody wore his jeans and sneakers.  My hubby also wore a different Wales shirt, so it was fun to match as a family.


 Do you have any other fun souvenir shopping tips or cool stores you recommend in other places?  Leave me a comment and let me know!

Have a lovely day!


Friday, May 27, 2016

Teacher Appreciation - "Write Teacher" - Free Printable


Teacher Appreciation Week has come and gone, but I think we should show our teachers appreciation any time of the year since they do so much for our children!  If you are still looking for a gift to give to your child's teacher, here is another idea.  These would be nice to give to your teacher at the end of the school year, at the beginning of the school year, or even during a birthday or special holiday.

I found these cute zipper pouches at my local Michaels craft store (you can find some cute ones online HERE and HERE).


I filled the zipper pouches with some coordinating notepads and notecards along with a pencil.


Download my free printable 5x7 card from HERE or click on the photo below.  

https://app.box.com/s/on76wc6auxpupmrdko23yhbttlkhiayn

Print the PDF on white heavy cardstock paper.  Cut the cards out and punch holes on each side and attach to the zipper pouches using twine or ribbon.


I'm sure your teachers will appreciate this thoughtful gift!