Apr 2, 2020

mommy and me

Last May my husband gifted a Mommy and Me photography session for Mother's Day with my dear friend Yanai (@yanai.arias.photography) and it turned out being my favorite gift to date!

I let my kids pick our location and to be honest I really thought they were going to pick Disneyland. When the girls picked Starbucks I pretty much laughed until I realized they were serious and I obliged to their request. I called Yanai up and told her the idea and she loved it just as much as the kids did. 

We went to my local Starbucks that literally was jammed packed with people. Not gonna lie I was pretty hesitant but I followed the kids lead and we had the best time together.

The photos came out so good and I couldn't be happier to finally share them on this little space of mine. 


Mar 31, 2020

favorite family board games

We are going on week three of quarantine and to be honest 
I am running out of fun activities to do with the girls. 
I was thrilled when I saw that Target is currently 
having a great deal on board/video games. 
Buy 2 get 1 free!!

I took this opportunity to add a few more games to our collection.
Target drive up pick up came in clutch yesterday!

I am sharing with you our family favorites...

Which game is your favorite? Don't see it on our list, share below in the comments!!


Mar 17, 2020

st patrick's day 2020

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone!!!

We are learning how to navigate this new quarantine/distant learning life! 

To be completely honest I am feeling every single emotion from anger to guilt. 

I felt like such a failure for not being ahead of the game with our traditional St. Patrick's Day breakfast celebration and the girls yearly basket surprise. 

Had you told me earlier this month we wouldn't be allowed to leave our house because of a pandemic, I would have thought you were joking.

Luckily I am a bit of a hoarder and had a few things stored from last year and I was able to order a few things online from Target for drive up pickup.

The result...
this morning my girls were thrilled with their surprises and I realized that they do not need some elaborate gift after all.

St. Patrick's Day gift baskets...
*everything is from Target except the Starbucks gift card*
- green basket in the Easter holiday section at Target for $1
- window clings and festive socks from the Dollar Spot 
- Lego set  for less than $10 (I bought Cailee this Moana set  and Charlotte this Aurora set)
- Crayola Color Your Bath Bucket Bath Bomb (this item is an 8 count and I bought one and split it between both girls)

Just for fun this was last years St. Patrick's Day breakfast set up...

Wishing you all the luck of the Irish this St. Patrick's Day!!


Jan 1, 2020

my vision for 2020

Happy New Year!

With each new year I like to write down goals I wish to accomplish in the new year. 

This year I am trying something a little different. 

I have decided to create a vision board with the things I wish to manifest in my life this new year.

I have a printed copy of my vision board on my nightstand so I see it everyday.

I figured I should also put this out into the universe as well. 

Maybe it will inspire you to create a vision board yourself and maybe just keep me accountable a little in the process :) 

Whats on my vision board?!?

Healthy eating is a top priority for me. I would like to say that we eat health about 80% of the time but our down fall would be our snack intake. This year I really want to focus on eating healthier snacks. Instead of chocolate chip muffins or cheez-it crackers, I want to consume more fruits and veggies. This is a family goal that I think we will definitely be able to accomplish. 

Save money. I think this is pretty much every persons goal every year! I work part-time and my husband's income is basically our main form of survival. So my plan is to put have of my paycheck into savings. I am also going to try to avoid unnecessary purchases at Target. 

New cars for the hubby and I. So I don't really need a new car but a more gas efficient car would be nice(Even though I want an BMW X5, we are leaning towards a Tesla). My hubby on the other hand is in desperate need of a new car. So for this year our top priority is to get him into a new car. He has had his eye on a particular car and to make this happen is at the top of my list. 

Weekly Family Dinners. We have talked about this for months and this year is the year I am determined to make sure these happen. The idea of having a weekly dinner with my family sounds easy enough but with crazy schedules it doesn't always happen. Our game plan is to have them either on Saturday or Sunday night and make it a pot luck or a restaurant night. 

Trips to New York and Hawaii. These are big ticket items on my vision board. Expensive adventures but something we really want to do as a family. So I decided to put out into the universe :) Planting seeds that will hopefully sprout into reality.

Last but not least is to read at least one book a month. This is a goal that will help give me more "me time". I enjoy reading and have a long list of recommendations I cant wait to tackle! 

I can't wait to see what this year has in store for me and I plan on taking every opportunity that comes my way.

Cheers to a new year and new adventures! 


Oct 26, 2019

Peter Pan inspired Halloween Costumes

Once upon a time my family lived for a good group costume. 
Oh how times have changed. The days of spending hours putting together the perfect group costume are long gone. Now that my girls are getting older they tell me exactly who they want to dress up as and it is a quick trip to the mall or Target.  

So humor me while I relish on the memories of our first family group costume...the year we attended Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland in 2012 as John Darling, Nana and Wendy Darling. 

These costumes took me less than three days to put together and so could you! 

John Darling Costume

- I bought the felt Top Hat from Party City for $2.99 
(Similar option Top Hat from Party City for $0.99)
- I bought the fake reading glasses (popped out the lens) and black umbrella at the 99 cent store!
- I found an over sized Men's White Dress Shirt from JCPenny for under $6
(Similar option here and here)
- Since we were at Disneyland my husband decided on wearing his regular running shoes.
But I have seen very affordable black slippers here and here!

Nana Costume

For Cailee's costume I kept it simple and bought the puppy costume on Amazon and sewed on the felt bone tag. 
I added the ribbon bow on her so people would know she's a girl!

Wendy Darling Costume

- I found a light blue long sleeve dress in the clearance section at Forever 21. It was two sizes bigger than I normally wear but because it was suppose to be a night gown it worked perfectly!
(Similar options here and here)
- I added the blue ribbon as a bow in my hair and accented my dress to look a little more like Wendy in the above photo!
- The blue ribbon was an easy find at my local craft store. I have since found it at Hobby Lobby as well!
- White tights from Target. 
(Similar options here and here)
- Black flats I already owned but found great options here and here!

Happy almost Halloween!


Nov 28, 2018

Celebrating the holidays with Paperless Post

The Holiday Season is in full swing in our home!

I am so excited for all the holiday events we have planned and are attending!

This truly is the most wonderful time of the year for our family. 

There is nothing we love more than getting our families together and we take full advantage of the holiday season.

I love "trying" to be the hostess with the mostess.

This year my life is being made easy  once again by Paperless Post!

In the past I have used Paperless Post for birthday party invitations and loved them!
(You can click on the link above to see that post)

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they offer a great variety of holiday party invitations! 

When I say they offer a great variety I mean...its hard to pick a favorite!!!

We are hosting a little gingerbread decorating party with our family and to be honest I was being a little lazy and was going to text everyone.

Then I saw these Gingerbread House invitations and thought heck why not email these!

Lets just say these were well received and made me look like I was the best hostess ever ;)

We are not hosting an Ugly Sweater or Cookie Swap parties but after seeing these invitations I almost wish we were!!

Do yourself a favor and check out Paperless Post before you try spending hours handcrafting your own invitations this season! 

Your sanity and wallet will thank you!

*I was gifted Paperless Post coins for this post review but have used them in the past and absolutely love the site*


Nov 12, 2018

Festival of Holidays at Disney California Adventure Park

The hubby and I took the girls to Disneyland yesterday for a much needed family fun day!

The parks were crowded but that didn't stop us from stuffing our faces with delicious food!

Lucky for us this weekend kicked off the Festival of Holidays at Disney California Adventure Park. 

This was the hubby's first time trying out the AP Sip and Savor Pass and he was not disappointed!

What is a Sip and Savor Pass?
Each Sip and Savor Pass is $54, including tax. In addition to a reduced price, Annual Passholders will also receive a special Passholder lanyard as well as buttons (at participating marketplaces upon coupon redemption). To receive the Passholder price and keepsakes, a valid Annual Pass and photo ID must be shown upon purchase.

This was my second time enjoying the Sip and Savor Pass and it was just as good as the first time if not better!

Now its time to share my favorites...

First up is the 
Beef Pot Roast on a Potato Roll with Horseradish Cream 
from Grandma's Recipes

I liked this dish but wish there was a little less horseradish cream on it.

Next up was the 
Pozole Rojo Beef with Hominy Polenta 
from A Twist on Tradition

This dish was delicious and very flavorful! 
I had never had polenta before but was pleasantly surprise how well it went with the beef!

The Chorizo Queso Fundido with House-made Tortilla Chips 
from Brew and Bites was hands down my husband's favorite!

The Shrimp and Grits with Andouille Sausage 
from Holiday Duets was so good!

The sausage had a little kick to it that just made the dish so delicious.
This dish is one of my favorites!

My second favorite dish was the Holiday Stuffing Mac & Cheese
from Winter Sliderland.

This dish isn't the prettiest to look at but it is tasty! 
Absolutely the epitome of comfort food!

My least favorite dish of the day was the
Jalapeno Latkes with Chipotle Crema 
from Spicy Celebrations!

This was good but after a bite I was over it. 
Not sure if it was the Crema but I just didn't care for the dish.

I have two more coupons to redeem and I am hoping to try the 
Turkey & Stuffing Tamale with Cranberry Relish from Merry Mashup
and the
Braised Pork Belly Adobo with Garlic Fried Rice from Blissfully Braised!

Some other treats we indulged in that deserve to be mentioned are...

The Mimosa Flight from Making Spirits Bright.

The flight came with a Pomegranate Mimosa, Pear Mimosa and White Cranberry Mimosa.

I am not a Mimosa kind of person but I enjoyed all three flavors!

I also tried the Pomegranate Margarita with Chipotle-smoked Sea Salt Half-Rim and it was awesome. The margarita was not watered down at all and the chipotle sea salt was just the right spice to it!

And the girls hustled daddy to buy them red churros and surprise surprise they tasted no different.

Yesterday was just what we needed :)

And we are already planning our next visit back to the park in a couple of weeks!


Oct 30, 2018

Simple and Chic Halloween Style

Our family loves and appreciates each holiday!

Halloween is a holiday I've loved since I was a baby thanks to my grandpa the ultimate holiday lover!

When it comes to decorating our home I don't over do the decorations.

I like to keep it simple and chic!

The majority of the decor is from Target dollars spot over the years!

I hope you enjoy my take on Halloween home decor.

When I saw these black, grey and white pumpkins I knew exactly where they could go!

The floating shelf in the entrance of our home is where we display our wedding canvas! 

So these pumpkins just scream elegant to me so it compliments the space so well.

The second floating shelf in our living room is rather high up so the kids can't access it!
So I placed the items that would easily fall over if you tap them up here to avoid any accidents.

The center "P" wooden monogram I purchased from Michael's unfinished about three years ago for less than 50 cents! 

It is almost impossible to photograph this area with out tv glare!

The candle sticks lit up at night is the prettiest sight.


Oct 29, 2018

Family Costumes

Halloween is just a few days away and I am taking a look back at my favorite Family Costumes we have worn throughout the years.

It has always been so fun putting together our family costumes and I am a bit sad this year we aren't doing a family costume but have no fear I'll convince everyone next year!

In 2012 we attended our first Mickey's Halloween Party and we dressed up like Wendy, John and Nana! These costumes were so easy to put together I literally got everything accounted for in two days!

In 2015 we dressed up like Max, Alison, Dani and Thackery Binx from Hocus Pocus!
My oldest picked these costumes for us and it was by far my favorite! 
Cailee's Dani costume took me some time to put together but it was so worth it!
Find the tutorial for the Dani costume here
I promise it is easy just a little time consuming!

In 2016 Cailee wanted to dress up as The Chipettes from Alvin and the Chipmunks!
She didn't want just any chipette costume she wanted the outfits from the "single ladies" number they did in the movie. 
Putting together this costume was way more difficult for me because I had to sew the top wraps we wore. I had to research how to make these in the easiest way possible. I got it done and was so proud of the results and my little one was over the moon! Well worth the hours of frustration.

This year my girls made costumes easy for me Charlotte is dressing up as Tinkerbell and Cailee is dressing up as rainbow dash!

What should we dress up next year as?!


Jul 31, 2018

returning to work

This post has been sitting in my drafts for weeks now but I am ready to share it.

Let me give you a little back story first...

Back in June I was scrolling thru Indeed looking at the different job postings in my area. I wasn't seriously looking for work but decided to give a few interesting jobs more attention. I applied to a few job postings and the next day I got a response and the day after that I found myself in an interview. I left the interview so excited and wanting this job because it had been the best interview I had ever had! 

Fast forward to when this post was written...the night before my first day!

My girls are asleep and I am incredibly nervous for what tomorrow will bring! You see tomorrow is my first day of work. I have not worked in several years. Completely devoting my time to my girls and husband. 

I am pretty much feeling every emotion possible.

One moment I am so excited and then I feel tremendous amounts of guilt.

I will be pretty much be working all week for 4-6 hours a day. The schedule itself is not bad at all, its actually one of the reasons I accepted the job. 
However, it means that my hubby will be watching the kiddos for a portion of the day and when school starts I won't be at pick up. 

Enter mom guilt! 
As excited as I am for myself and the opportunities this job will give me. 

I am also experiencing mom guilt to the max. 

How will this affect my girls? 
Will they miss me? 
Will I miss them even more? 
Will my husband be able to watch them and work at the same time when I am away?
Will I miss a lot of school events and will that scar my kid for life?

I wrote pros and cons lists and to be honest they left me more confused.

But what I do know is that I am doing this for my girls, they are my WHY.
It all boils down to them. 

I want this job and mentally feel like I need this job.

I need time to myself and making money at the same time doesn't hurt one bit.

Tomorrow is a big day for all of us and now I really need to get to bed!


Jul 30, 2018

Reading Now: Hocus Pocus and The All-New Sequel

After a much needed outing with the girls I stumbled across this beauty!

I almost missed it but I swear I can spot these witches from a mile away.

I had no intention of buying myself a book(trying to save money and check books out from the library) but I just couldn't leave without this.

I haven't read a single page but I was just too excited to share with you all.

A little overview found on Barnes and Nobles website:

"Hocus Pocus is beloved by Halloween enthusiasts all over the world. Diving once more into the world of witches, this electrifying two-part young adult novel, released on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the 1993 film, marks a new era of Hocus Pocus. Fans will be spellbound by a fresh retelling of the original film, followed by the all-new sequel that continues the story with the next generation of Salem teens.

Shortly after moving from California to Salem, Massachusetts, Max Dennison finds himself in hot water when he accidentally releases a coven of witches, the Sanderson sisters, from the afterlife. Max, his sister, and his new friends (human and otherwise) must find a way to stop the witches from carrying out their evil plan and remaining on earth to torment Salem for all eternity. 

Twenty-five years later, Max and Allison's seventeen-year-old daughter, Poppy, finds herself face-to-face with the Sanderson sisters in all their sinister glory. When Halloween celebrations don't quite go as planned, it's a race against time as Poppy and her friends fight to save her family and all of Salem from the witches' latest vile scheme."

Stay tuned to see what I think of this new read...but truth be told I can't help but love it just because its Hocus Pocus ;)