Friday Favorites; Back in Action

Happy Friday!! I’m linking up with some other bloggers today to share my Friday Favorites! This was our first full week back home from Vacation and it was back to school and routine!

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On Saturday Mike took Ari to a University of Michigan game for the first time ever. He was so excited to go to the “Big House” with his dad. Hearing all about their adventures when they got home was a favorite for me. He was so happy!

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While the boys were out Giada and I did some shopping and went diaper-free!! She’s been doing so well for the past week and I cannot wait until  we are officially done with diapers over her! Girls shopping morning? A favorite for sure!

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Which reminds me of my all time favorite emoji.  This is what she was reenacting. See the resemblance?

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After G and I went shopping, the weather was cool and I was feeling the Fall vibe so I searched pinterest for a new chili recipe. I found this White Chicken Chili one and only needed to grab a few things to make it! It turned out to be exactly what I was looking for in a chili recipe. I’ve already made it twice since Saturday. Hubs loved it, I loved it, and most important, the babes devoured it! This is definitely a new favorite recipe in our house!

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Later in the week we got to take a walk to our favorite place for treats… 711!

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Giada got a bunch of new necklaces from her favorite jewelry shop; AK’s Hidden Gems and has been rocking them all week!

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…and we got some amazing Mommy & Me matching scarves from Trendy Stop! These are going to be a favorite all Fall long. I love the colors in them! They match a ton of stuff we already have!

  4    Giada got to meet her Speech teacher for the first time this week! The Lucia top from Matilda Jane? Definitely a favorite of mine! You will be seeing lots of this!

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Oh and how about that high pony? It’s so cute to see her in action with her speech teacher. She gets undivided attention for the whole session and just eats it up.

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Wednesday night we went to a Just Between Friends sale and hit the jackpot! You can see all my steals here. This style shopping is my new go-to for second hand shopping. I absolutely loved the layout of it!

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Last night we met some friends for a last minute playdate at the outdoor mall. Nordstrom on a Thursday. Sun was shining and the kids all cooperated. Holla.

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Last up. Did you see our Halloween pics?! They are the cutest thing ever. I think they are my favorite yet. Check them out and head over to facebook to enter to win your own mini session too!

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This weekend is another low-key one for us. I cannot wait. 

Best Dressed Riding Hood

I am so excited to share our Halloween costumes with all of you!

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I’m pretty certain this will be the last year that I get to choose their costumes, so I wanted some photos to document the cuteness! We met Mac from Buchanan House Photography at a local park and I can’t say enough good words about her and her work! It was a hot day and the babes were less than thrilled to be in their costumes in the woods, but Mac was so patient and even convinced them to play a game to she could get the right shot!

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Buchanan House Photography offers many different portrait options and we went with a mini-session that lasts typically lasts 30 minutes. It was the perfect time frame to get some great images of the babes!

When deciding what they should be I wanted them to be something that coordinated, but didn’t seem too juvenile for Ari. Hey, he needs to keep his street cred while matching his little sister! I also wanted something that my hubs and I could easily match too! When we go out as a family my hubs will be a huntsman and I will be the Granny ;).  Growing up my brother and I usually had homemade costumes made by my Grandma or passed down from older cousins. I really wanted to find costumes that were homemade and not found in a store! I stumbled upon two etsy shops; See Sal Sew & One Two Three Shop that made us the most beautiful costumes I could have ever imagined!  If something is handmade it is always a little more special to me as it reminds me of my Grandma who used to sew just about everything for me!

Giada’s dress & cape were from One Two Three Shop. Her dress is made with an elastic waist and NO zipper. I don’t know about your kids, but mine don’t love zippers touching them like a lot of other costumes. The dress is full enough to add a tutu skirt underneath for extra flair and the cape comes all the way to the ground.  It will help keep little miss warm in the event we have chilly Michigan Halloween (which is 99% likely) and there is plenty of room to layer underneath! They have lots of other costumes and handmade dresses and One Two Three Shop is offering 15% off any purchase now until October 15 with code redriding15.

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Most of the wolf costumes I found online seemed very young/cartoony looking. I wanted his costume to look realistic and not like he was in a “baby” costume. When I saw this one I just about died. It was exactly what I was looking for! Ari’s costume came with a handmade hat (that is so intricate and realistic looking), gloves with fur, and a tail. Depending on the weather he will be wearing a black jogging suit that he already owns!  See Sal Sew is a mom run shop in MD. She makes a variety of other costumes too and will take custom orders via private message on etsy! Let her know I sent you!

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These images are so near and dear to me. When I think about how few Halloweens I will get with them being little I get a little teary eyed. They just seem to grow up so fast.  Because Mac is pretty sweet, Buchanan House Photography is offering a FREE Halloween mini session for one follower too! Head over to facebook to enter! Details announced 9/17 at 9pm.

*30 minute shoot in Rochester or Shelby Twp with 3 5×7’s included.

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Just Between Friends Shopping!

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Tonight was SO much fun and unlike any other mom 2 mom shopping I have done in the past!

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I got to shop the pre-sale for the Just Between Friends sale in Madison Heights and I can’t believe the DEALS I got! Let me start by saying that everything was in AMAZING condition and the sale was very organized. I loved that I could just skip to my babes’ sizes and choose from name brand clothes that were all hanging nicely. I came from work tonight and was able to do all my shopping (with the babes in tow!) in under 30 minutes! It’s safe to say I have NEVER shopped a mom2mom that fast!

Here are the details of the sale:

876 Horace Brown Dr
Madison Heights, Michigan

Thursday Sept 17 9-7pm($3.00 admission fee that benefits HAVEN in Oakland county.)

Friday Sept 18 10-6pm (FREE Admission)

Saturday Sept 19 9-1pm (Free Admission) most items without stars are 1/2 off

Strollers are welcome anytime! They accept Cash, Visa, MC, Amex, sorry no checks.

Just Between Friends just celebrated 150 locations in the USA and Canada. They have been featured on the Today show & Good Morning America to name a few media spots.

Can’t make this sale? Head over to their facebook page to see additional sales!

OK… On to the good stuff. What did I buy!?!?

I spent $50 on the dot and I got the babes some pretty awesome Fall clothing! I wanted stuff that would work for layering and I was so excited to find all this!

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This denim shirt for Giada was $2 and the possibilities for it are endless! I envision her wearing some cute boots and a big headband, of course!

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This chambray shirt and maroon H&M corduroy skirt will look awesome with some mustard tights she already has!

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This was my most expensive combo but all the pieces can be used separately or all together! The coral jean jacket was from Crew Cuts!!

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Last outfit is that denim shirt again with a bubble skirt/legging combo. G just loves skirts and I know she will want to add a fun necklace with this outfit!

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I got Ari some pretty awesome Fall stuff too!

Clockwise from top left: (Zara sweater, True Religion button down, Gap button down, lightweight Northface, and Zara pants).

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While I was there I was immediately drawn to the HUGE selection of shoes….unfortunately they weren’t the right sizes for my babes, but take a look at how awesome these are (and all were marked $5 and under)!

I also found a TON of Under Armor for bigger boys!

… an amazing deal on a Britax B-Agile!

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And tons of Halloween costumes!

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If you are in the area you really should go check it out!

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Road Tripping 101…with Kids!

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Hubs and I just returned from a week long road trip with the babes! We went from Michigan to Virginia (and back) with a couple of stops along the way! This was our first adventure like this and I do have to say it went pretty smoothly! The babes LOVED staying in a hotel and the car rides were pretty painless. Here are some of the things that helped us remain stress free!

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-Split the trip up!! Our entire trip was about 8 and a half hours one way without stopping and we decided that we shouldn’t try and make it in one day. Both ways we stopped at the halfway mark and stayed over night.

-Try to drive during a normal “rest time”. The very first day we got on the road it was 4pm and the babes were no where near tired. This was probably the most restless part of the journey.  The days that we left right before naptime (noon) the babes were naturally ready to rest and it made for a pretty quiet ride.

-Portable DVD player is a MUST! We borrowed one from a friend that had dual screens. It was nice to start each leg of our trip with a movie. I also borrowed movies that the babes hadn’t seen before. It kept their attention!

-Make up little travel bags with coloring books, crayons, and stickers. I got all these items at the dollar tree and didn’t show them to the kids until we got to the hotel! They loved it!

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  -Utilize the hotel cribs! Giada still sleeps in a crib and it was super hard to contain her to a bed at night. The second day of our trip I called down and we got a rolling crib! It was the perfect solution to keep her contained!

-Pack easy to travel/eat in the car snacks. I brought applesauce pouches, mini cups of pringles, apples, and other individual snacks they didn’t need to be refrigerated. I also brought a loaf of bread along with peanut butter & jelly for easy lunchtime sandwiches!

-ALWAYS get a room with a mini fridge! Each hotel we stayed in offered free breakfast. Every morning we would take an extra milk from breakfast to have for later in the day!

-Use fast food drink holders as individual plates for the car! This was an easy way to portion meals on the go for them..and allow them to still have their dips!

-Let the kids run off some steam at rest stops!! Or better yet, find a waterpark! We stayed at one on our last night and it was so refreshing to have a place to go play instead of camping out in our hotel room!

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-If you can’t find a waterpark at least find a hotel with an indoor pool!

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-Bring an ipad or tablet that can connect to the hotel’s wifi. Hotel TV’s are always hit or miss as far as catching a cartoon. This way the adults can watch the TV and the babes can relax with their favorite shows at night!

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-Have a diaper bag close to the front of the car with all incidentals you might need along the way. Our bag included band aids, ibuprofen, Tylenol, wipes, a change of clothes for each kid, sun block, bug spray, hand sanitizer, toothbrushes, and toothpaste. I wanted something easy to grab without having to sift through luggage.

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-Make a schedule, but allow for some flexibility. Sitting in a car for a long period of time isn’t easy on anyone! Sometimes you just need to go with the flow on vacation!

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