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december -month-in-9-squares
Family, Our Month in 9 Squares

Our Month In 9 Squares – December 2016

Dear December, 

And just like that, the holidays are over.  December was a festive month filled with wonderful Christmas adventures, and it was extra special sharing it with our sweet girls, (You know what they say, the holidays are magical when shared with little ones, and I couldn’t agree more!)

We celebrated the birth of Jesus, ate our body weight in Christmas cookies, sang our little holiday hearts out, watched every Hallmark Christmas movie possible and of course enjoyed bundling up for the cooler weather.  December is my favorite month of the year, not just because of all of the fun activities the month brings, but because of the joyful spirit in the air and all of the family time and memories made each year.  December you will be greatly missed.

As I pack up the Christmas decorations and close the door on December, I excitedly anticipate the new fun times ahead as we ring in a new year and welcome the adventure that will be 2017.

december -month-in-9-squares

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Santa 2016
CELEBRATE, Family, Holidays

Santa 2016 | Christmas Tradition

Every year we take the girls all dressed up in their matching Christmas dresses to Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop for their annual Christmas photo with Santa. Truth moment… every visit I hope for at least one crying girl; I adore a good cry face!  This year proved to be almost identical to last year with an extremely sad face from my sweet 1.5 year old who still doesn’t love the idea of sitting on some strange man’s lap! And for the second year in a row, my four year old was beyond excited to greet Santa with a smile and proceed to tell him what she would like for Christmas. If you are wondering what she asked for, I learned that she wants purple glass slippers and a pink wand; good to know!

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Month In 9 Squares - November 2016
Family, Our Month in 9 Squares

Our Month In 9 Squares – November 2016

Dear November,

Thank you November for finally bringing cooler weather to Arizona! Fall has been lovely, but your chilly winter weather has really added a festive touch to the month. You were a month filled with thankfulness and gratitude and we loved sharing Thanksgiving traditions with the girls. But, with open arms and eager hearts, we welcome you December!!! Bring on all of the holly jolly Christmas spirit and let us not forget the real reason for the season ahead, the birth of Jesus!

Goodbye pumpkin spice and hello peppermint mocha. ☕️

Month In 9 Squares - November 2016

I just like to smile, smiling my favorite. – Buddy the Elf

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Cozy Up With SoCozy : Kids Styling Products
Family, LIFESTYLE, Mommy Break Features

Cozy Up With SoCozy : Kids Bath-Time & Styling Products

This post is sponsored by SoCozy.  All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

True story: My 4 year old has never had a hair cut… crazy right?!  She has very long, naturally straight hair, and I love it.  That being said, if there is one thing I don’t love about her hair… it’s the tangles we battle on a daily basis! Extra long hair means extra tangles and extra frustration to untangle.  I don’t know if you have ever tried to comb through tangly bed-head before, but it is a chore, especially when you are working with an irrational toddler who doesn’t fully understand it’s importance.  Brushing, combing, and styling her hair is like WWIII in our home, every single day.  I have been {almost} desperate for a product that would be kid-friendly and help make this daily routine easier… and I’ve finally found it!  Let me introduce you to our new bath-time friend – SoCozy. Continue Reading

San Diego Family Vacation - Where to Eat
Family, LIFESTYLE, Travel

San Diego Family Vacation : Where To Eat

One of the best parts about going on vacation is trying out new restaurants and not having to cook, can I get an AMEN?!  But, when you are a visitor in a new city, it can be challenging to find the best restaurants.  Thankfully we were in great hands at The Hilton San Diego Resort and Spa, because of their incredible Concierge, Gordon.  I seriously can’t say enough wonderful things about Gordon, he ensured a tasty success for every meal we ate on our San Diego family vacation. Thanks to his recommendations we were able to not just enjoy, but absolutely LOVE our dining experiences in San Diego!  Gordon listened to our palatal aspirations and was able to provide us with family-friendly locations to eat and explore.  He embraced the fact that we were foodies traveling with kids and provided us with unique and memorable dining experiences that were also family-friendly environments.  Here is a recap of some of our favorite restaurants that we discovered on our San Diego family vacation. Continue Reading

San Diego Family Vacation : SeaWorld
Family, LIFESTYLE, Travel

SeaWorld : How To SEA It All In One Day | San Diego Family Vacation

Where do I even begin?!… Our day at SeaWorld San Diego truly was one of the most wonderful family days we have ever shared together.  My husband and I surprised our two daughters with a long weekend getaway to San Diego and SeaWorld.  My husband and I both LOVED visiting SeaWorld as a kid, so it was a no-brainer to take our girls as soon as the opportunity arose!  Looking back on our day at SeaWorld, I wouldn’t have done anything different: we saw and did everything we wanted!  So I thought it would be helpful to share our day of adventures below, plus 10 tips and tricks!


:: Our Day At SeaWorld: How to SEA it all in one day ::

San Diego Family Vacation : SeaWorld

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Prescott Adventures - Weekend GetawayPrescott Adventures - Weekend Getaway
Family, LIFESTYLE, Travel

Fall In Prescott

When you live in the valley of the sun, escaping to the mountains is always a welcomed retreat. We were able to spend the weekend in Prescott, Arizona to get some much needed time in the great outdoors.  Cooler weather and pine trees did not disappoint!


:: Here is a RECAP of our outdoorsy weekend escape to enjoy the fall in Prescott, Arizona :: Continue Reading

Pumpkin Patch
Family, LIFESTYLE

Adventures at the Pumpkin Patch

Today we were blessed with a fun morning at the pumpkin patch, but in true Arizona glory it was a scorcher! 97 degrees makes it hard to feel “fall-like” at a farm, but we did our best to ignore the sunny heat and just enjoy the fall festivities.  Surrounded by mom friends and lots of little ones running around, we still managed to have a great time!

Mother Nature’s Farm in Gilbert, Arizona provided a fun morning of pumpkin picking, pumpkin decorating, hay rides, goat feeding, corn mazes and bounce houses. With all the excitement, the kids didn’t even realize how hot it was, they had a blast!  I always love fall activities and the opportunity to experience new adventures with my girls.


Here are a few pumpkin-loving photos of our pumpkin patch adventures!

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Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend
Family, LIFESTYLE

Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Weekend of Fall

We decided to kick off the first weekend of fall on the right note… with a girls day at the farm.  We joined friends and spent the morning exploring the farm.  Now that the girls are 4 and 1 years old, this fall is going to be an active one filled with all kinds of fun.  There are so many aspects of fall that I can not get enough of, and they all start with the word pumpkin.  Well maybe not all of them, but most of them; picking out pumpkins at a pumpkin patch, painting pumpkins, drinking pumpkin spice latte’s, sweater weather, football, fall candles, plaid blanket scarfs… I could go on and on.  There is something so sweet about fall and all of the festivities… just thinking about it makes me feel all cozy inside.

…Anyways, sorry about my tangent on my love for fall, back to the farm!  We were able to show the kids pretty much every farm animal you can imagine and the best part was riding a train all around the farm and through the pumpkin fields.  It was a great day and the perfect kick-off to all of the exciting memories and times coming in October.

Here are a few photos from our day on the farm!

Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall WeekendFall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall WeekendFall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend Fall on the Farm | Celebrating the 1st Fall Weekend

If you live in Arizona or plan on visiting, add Schnepf Farms to your must-visit list. They have the best ‘Pumpkin and Chili Party’ every weekend through the month of October… it is legit fall fun!

Have fun this fall season.  Embrace all of the festivities and enjoy making memories with your loved ones!  I encourage you to try something new and to drink lots of pumpkin spice lattes!

www.espressoeverafter.com

Baby Registry - The Baby Cubby
Family, LIFESTYLE, Mommy Break Features

Baby REGISTRY Must Haves | Featuring The Baby Cubby

As a mom of two little ones, I have been around the block when it comes to baby gear! I remember being pregnant for the first time trying to figure out which baby items I actually needed and which ones were not essential.  Baby stores these days are flooded with options on everything from pacifiers and bottles to car seats and strollers.  Often times, too many options leave new moms-to-be paralyzed wondering what to purchase and what to pass on.  Looking back, it would have been nice had I been given a “must have purchase guide” for new moms-to-be.  Instead I was on my own and registered for random items and hoped that they would be helpful with our new baby!  In hindsight, I made good decisions on many items, but failed miserably on others.  Time to help out any mom-to-be’s that are in this situation… Here is the official “Baby Registry Must Have Purchase Guide” for Momma’s to be… share this up, let’s help those in need! Continue Reading