Vacation Planning

One of the things I like to do every January is plan our vacations for the entire year. I don’t necessarily arrange all the travel accommodations in January, but establish more of a “plan.” I like knowing what is coming to I can start saving (money and time off work).

Here’s my process:

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  1. I divide the year into seasons. Winter, Summer, Spring, Fall. And start with what is already on the calendar.

    1. Winter - nothing

    2. Spring - Couples trip to the caribbean

    3. Summer - Family Reunion to Idaho

    4. Fall - nothing

  2. Then I think about family + friends. Who do we want to visit this year? How will we get there?

    1. My brother in Alabama (fly)

    2. My in-laws in California (fly or drive)

  3. Now I dream. What sounds fun?

    1. Maui with the kids

    2. Couple weekend to NYC

  4. Arrange everything on the calendar

    1. Winter - nothing

    2. Spring - Spring break in CA, Couples trip to the caribbean

    3. Summer - Family Reunion to Idaho, Maui with the kids,

    4. Fall - Alabama over fall break, NYC

  5. Start searching for cheap flights, I start with google flights and usually check every single morning for several weeks. Flights are normally marked down mid week. I prioritize trips based on if I found a great deal to that place :)

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A few notes:

-No traveling this winter = time to work and save money for the rest of the year.
-Lot’s of family trips while the kids are out of school (summer and breaks).
-Couples trips work best while school is in session, that way Grandma gets a break while the kids are at school.
-Whatever trip does’t happen this year, roll over to the next and put it on the top of your list.

Dreamy cotton pajama set in stripe

I love pajamas. There, I said it. I mom all day and can’t wait to crawl into my pajamas as soon the kids are tucked into bed. But not all PJ’s are created equal, and I got a new pair for Christmas that take the cake. (I literally donated all my other PJ’s last week because none compare to these). They stretch, their super soft, very flattering and wash up beautifully.

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Dreamy cotton pajama set in stripe

Best part, they offer petite sizes, for us short girls. And XL sizes too. So no matter your size, you can enjoy the best pajamas on the planet. Shop here.

To-Do List

I live in Utah. Which means January is the worst month of the year. It’s fine. I’m used to it. I’m normally dreaming of warmer weather…. making myself miserable...

But how cute is this January to-do list? Little goals/practices to get you through the month. Super excited to try it out and focus on something other than the beach vacay I’m not taking ;)

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Download this list for yourself here.

Whole 30

New Year = new goals. Is healthy eating one of yours? I just came across this article on The Everygirl, Why This Health Coach Recommends Whole30 to All Her Clients.

I am a huge Whole30 fan. I’ve done the Whole 30 challenge a few times, I actually just did one between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Perfect way to not gain extra holiday weight. It is easier than you think!

A lot of people do Whole 30 for weight loss, BUT the best part is how good it makes you feel. Whole 30 will give you loads of energy and get rid of your sugar cravings.

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Check out the article and read more about Whole 30 here.

Gorgeous Christmas Cookies

I’m obsessed with pretty Christmas Cookies. Not that I have the patience to actually make them, but I dream….

…er…not sure what about? Possibly receiving them as a gift, and then the cookies looking beautiful in my kitchen and then me eating them.

How gorgeous are theses?

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Fleece Pullover

Winter is here! I currently have a few inches of freshly fallen snow on my lawn and I am one of the people that love winter. My tried and true, go-to, mom-iform this time of year is a fleece pullover. It hits the balance of warmth, cozy and winter-chic.

A few of my favorites:

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Shop all these and more at Backcountry.com

Can I just tell you how much I love Backcountry.com? They have everything + great prices (plus I can always find some sort of discount code). And I’m slightly biased because I live in Utah (and I think they are based out of Utah) SO I can order something and it arrives the very next morning! And this is not sponsored. I truly love Backcountry.com and buy so much there this time of year.

Favorite Gift Guides

Tis the season to share a few of my favorite gift guides. I’ve loved diving through every single one for the hard-to-please family members of mine ;)

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image: Shades of Blue Interiors

  1. Jessica Garvin puts together a gift guide for him, her and little girls.

  2. Liz’s Christmas wish list from Pure Joy Home is another favorite. Lots of great ideas for your own wish list.

  3. The “older parent” gift guide from Chris Loves Julia saved my life! My parents are so hard to shop for.

  4. I look forward to Monika Hibbs gift guides every year. She has the best taste and everything is just sooooo pretty.

  5. Into all things pink? Rachel Parcell’s gift guide for the Pink Lover is total gem.

Happy Shopping! xo

What kind of mom are you?

Do you guys follow Ralphie @simplyonpurpose? She’s one of my favorite people has changed motherhood for the better.

She’s hosting an #iamthiskindofmom challenge right now and encouraging mothers to own the kind of moms they ARE instead of getting caught up in the kind of moms they wish they could be. I have loved scrolling through the #iamthiskindofmom hashtag. There are thousands of entires...

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Shannon at Plum Street Collective posted:

I am not the kind of mom who is good at getting on the floor and playing with my kids. I am not easy going or spontaneous. I raise my voice too much and get upset when they’re messy... but I am the mom who always shows up. I keep things running smoothly. I’m up early every day before them making sure they’re ready for the day. I bake treats for their successes and volunteer in their classrooms. I listen to them and praise their best traits. I am their biggest cheerleader. I teach them to be kind to everyone and build up those around them. I’m not a perfect mom - but I’m the best mom I know how to be!


Lauren of xoloveloxo posted:

I’m the kind of mom who lets the slow moments of life roll in. I’m the mom who doesn’t care if laundry takes an extra thirty minutes if he wants to help. I’m the kind of mom who puts those hand puppets on and talks in silly voices.all.day.long. I’m the kind of mom who reads the same book over and over and over knowing that he’s just trying to memorize it. I’m the kind of mom who lets him play until the bath water turns cold. I’m the kind of mom who lets him crack the eggs full well knowing I’ll be fishing out shells for a few minutes. I’m the kind of mom who lets the minutes pass and then at bedtime wonders why there aren’t more hours in the day to fit in one more tickle fight, one more belly laugh and one more “I love you”. I’m the kind of mom who lives for the slow moments. The long days. The little moments that are really the big memories.


Amy at The Essential Story posted:

I am not a playful mom - I'll wrestle and be silly for a little bit, but I need my space after a while. 
I AM a mom that loves to cook and bake with you. 
I AM a mom that loses my cool and yells sometimes. I am also a mom that apologizes for my bouts of frustration and gives lots of long hugs and kisses after time-outs.
I AM a mom who will never refuse a hug, and never lets go until you do -- even if that requires carrying you around when you're way too big to be held. 
I am not a build-legos-with-you kind of mom. But I'll do it for a hot minute because I want you to be happy. 
I am a strict mom. Like, no technology until you're 50. 
I am not a laid back mom -- I like order and calm. 
I AM a crafty mom who doesn't mind playdoh messes and glue -- but I draw the line at glitter.
I AM a mom who will lay in bed and be silly at bedtime, because that's our time to connect and talk about the day.
I AM a mom who will sing you the same song for 6 months straight, every night, because you love it. 
I AM a mom who will check on you every night before I go to bed. I am not the mom who makes a separate meal but I am the mom that allows treats. I am not the mom who goes all out for birthdays but I am the mom that goes buck wild all December-long. I’m not the mom who will sleep in your bed with you, but I am the mom who will insist you’re sleeping right beside me when you’re sick. 


What kind of mom are you?