August Favorites

Wow! August has seriously just flown by! Here I was thinking it was only the middle of the month and when I looked at the calendar I was like "oh my goodness, how is it the end of the month already?!". August has been such a busy, but overall fun month around here: we took a trip to New York to do some furniture shipping for my step-daughter Tiffani to furnish her new apartment (I can't wait to share more about that in September) and we watched the solar eclipse from Presque Isle Beach at Lake Erie, it was also the month of my husband's birthday so that was celebrated with BLTs and a homemade dark chocolate fudge cake (don't worry, I'll share the recipe before too long). We're already looking forward to September's arrival and everything that it will bring, autumn coming and the start of pumpkin everything, a trip to Myrtle Beach and Charleston South Carolina for vacation and so much more! But anyway, August isn't quite over yet, so I'm sharing all my favorites from this month below!

What girl doesn't love cute shoes, right? I've loved Mon Petit Shoes for awhile and these original congnac soft soled T strap shoes are the absolute best color for autumn! Bella loves wearing them and is constantly asking to put them on whenever we get dressed for the day, they're so soft and comfortable. I can't wait to pair them with allll the colors of knee socks for fall this year. The care that goes into making each pair is such high quality and each pair is slightly unique since they're all made by hand! Mon Petit shoes was established in 2010 by Julie, a mama to two little girls and a mama who had a passion for cute footwear for little ones, footwear that was soft enough for a newborn to wear, all while being sturdy enough for everyday use by an on the go toddler! Pretty sure she she has gotten it perfected.

If anyone ever had a thing for stripes, would be me, especially when it comes to black and white stripes. I pretty much buy all the things in white, black, gray, mint, brown or black and white stripes, I'm pretty predictable when it comes to choosing colors haha, but this bag is anything but predictable, it's literally perfection and I can't tell you how many compliments I've gotten on this sweet bag from Seaport Stitches while wearing it out lately. Chelsea, the owner and seamstress behind Seaport Stitches, learned how to sew while her oldest child was just a baby (she was even self taught!), and she was looking to create diaper bags that were not only functional, but durable and stylish as well (which is great since when Bella was a baby, all I could find at the store were character printed diaper bags that just weren't my style). I just love the simple, straightforward and fashionable feel to these bags. Now I just need the matching key chain and clutches she makes too!

Bella rarely ever wants to wear anything but dresses anymore, and these sweet dresses from Little Cottonwood arrived a few days ago, they're just perfection! Such timeless prints (both the yellow square and especially that lovely black and white buffalo check) and both  pieces will transition effortlessly into autumn layered with tights or knee high socks, and a cardigan or even a long sleeve shirt. The fabric of these dresses feels almost linen-like, they're great quality and feel as if they could be worn often and passed down to another child once it's outgrown. We've loved their wooden toys in the past since we purchased their wooden toy doctor set last year as a gift for Bella and we're such fans of their clothing as well now! I already can't wait to see what they'll release for autumn!

We just love hair accessories around here, typically we're all about hairbows but we've recently just discovered how much we love hair clips! We simply love these sweet little hair clips from Ryan and Wren! They're perfect for pulling the loose stands of hair out of Bella's eyes without having to entirely redo her hair, or even to put in her hair from the get go! Just look how cute they are, they kind of remind me of all the hair clips i was obsessed with as a child, but they're way cuter! I'm already looking forward to her autumn collection dropping soon and I'm super excited to have curated a collection that I'll be giving away over on my Instagram soon, they're all so perfect for autumn and you don't want to miss it! Make sure to take advantage of her 5 for $20 bundle deal when ordering clips too!

Probiotics are part of our every day routine around here I noticed so many things that taking probiotics has helped and they have so many great health benefits! I've been taking some of the LoveBug brand probiotics for the past couple of months and I've definitely noticed a difference in my health. I've yet to take the "here's the skinny" and but I'e been popping the "Cold's Suck" probiotics like crazy the past week since I'm fighting a cold, and the "yeast is the beast" probiotics which are specifically designed for women in mind, have been great as well! It's designed to fight yeast and urinary infections, formulated with 5 strains of lactobacillius probiotics and enhanced with cran-gyn and vitamin C. Make sure to check out their new product, "Labor of Love" made specifically for expecting and breastfeeding mamas.

When re-doing Bella's bedroom (which I'll be sharing more about soon, so beyond excited for that), I wanted to lighten it up a little bit, but also keep it feeling natural so I was drawn to jute rugs for her space. I'm such a fan of the layered rug look, I feel like it gives off such a cozy vibe and this natural bleached jute rug from Plush Rugs has been such a dream in her bedroom! It instantly made her space feel so much more cozy and "put together" as soon as we rolled it out in her bedroom and it couldn't be more perfect. If you need a rug for any space in your home, Plush Rugs is definitely the place to head, they have any style of rug you might want or need, in nearly alllll the sizes and so many colors, brands and styles to choose from, enough to fit any budget (I have a feeling I'll be heading to their website anytime I need new rugs). Plus, if you need any decor to go with your new rug from Plush Rugs, their sister-site, HedgeApple, has all the decor and furniture you'll ever need!

Bella simply loves dolls at this age right now, she's constantly having tea parties and campfires with s'mores for her dolls on a daily basis. Usually it's her knit dolls she seems to reach for most often, we just got this "splash" the cat knit doll from Blabla kids and she has hardly put it down since it arrived. Outside for playtime, indoor playtime, bedtime, just for snuggles during the day, she loves this little doll. I love how great the quality is, and also how soft (it's seriously so soft) and cozy it is, and the fact that it's so adorable! I have a feeling that our collection of knit dolls is just going to keep growing and growing and growing with each year that passes. It's the perfect huggable size, but their knot dolls also comes in smaller sizes (for babies) and they even have extra large knit dolls, pillows, and other fun items!

What have you been loving so far this month?


Perfect Wardrobe Staples from RubyClaire Boutique

If there's one thing I love to do during my "me time" as a mama, it's online shopping, perfect so I don't even have to leave the comfort of my own home and I feel like I always find the best deals while shopping online. When I was online shopping the other day at RubyClaire Boutique a few items caught my eye and then might have accidentally, or rather not so accidentally jumped into my shopping cart. One thing I've found myself looking for lately in clothing are pieces that can transition effortlessly throughout different seasons of the year, can be paired with other items already in my wardrobe to give them different looks and things that look unique yet sophisticated and make me feel my best! I think it's partly the minimalist in me coming out when I'm looking for clothing that transitions well, because I'd much rather have a few pieces of clothing in my closet that fits well, looks great, can be worn all throughout the year and that I love, rather than have my closet filled with a ton of items that I never wear because they can only be worn a couple months out of the year or for special occasions.

Immediately I fell in love with the pretty floral-ness of the Garden Cross Back Maxi Dress in navy. I love floral everything but definitely wanted something that was going to be a transition piece to take me into autumn and possibly even winter with wearability, and I feel like his dress is going to be a go-to staple in my closet for all seasons. It's such a good one for summer, and the cutout is such a subtle pretty detail if your ear your hair hair down, but a pretty statement detail if hair is worn up. For autumn, it'll be so great paired with a cardigan and maybe even a solid colored scarf and booties. It's such a soft and flattering dress, I feel every woman needs this one!

I also grabbed the Rae Flats in coffee, and they might be one of my most favorite pair of booties to date. They're so unique, well made and really give character to any outfit I wear them with. I don't really wear heels higher than a couple inches, partly because I find them uncomfortable and partly because I'm tall enough without heels as it is haha, so the tiny one inch heel on these is absolutely perfect. These are so comfortable and I'm pretty sure I need them in black as well!

The other item I chose was this pretty Stripes + Lace Top! I already love wearing this now when the weather is warm paired with shorts or jeans, and I cant wait to top it with a black cardigan when it cools off. I just love stripes, I consider black and white stripes to be a neutral, and they're just so classy, I couldn't help but fall in love with this cute sleeveless top. This top is actually made from bamboo fabric which is super cool!

Make sure to head over and check out all of the other pretty items RubyClaire Boutique has and snag a few pieces, maybe even these same pieces, for your own wardrobe!


College Care Package Essentials List

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SkinEssentials #CollectiveBias

Isn't it crazy how the summer has just flown by? Little ones are already heading back to school, and so many others are heading back to college! Before we know it, the weather will be cooling off and it'll be all about studying and learning again. This year my step-daughter will be heading back to college for another year towards her psychology degree, so I want her to have all the best essentials to keep her looking and feeling great while she's hard at work filling her brain with knowledge, and that's where a back to college care basket comes in handy! Filled with great items such as Neutrogena® Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial CleanserClean & Clear® MORNING BURST® Facial Cleanser and Neutrogena® Body Clear® Body Wash - Pink Grapefruit, as well as some other fun, useful and thoughtful items. I'll leave a list of items that are perfect for a back to college care package below so you moms of young ladies headed off to or back to college can create your very own are package! You can even click on the shoppable image above to purchase the skincare items!

We all know that studying for exams and tests can be a bit stressful, and stress can lead to breakouts, the great thing about a few of the products I've included in this basket, is that they stop breakouts in their tracks!

While at Target (which is where I found all of the items in this basket btw) the other day I spotted these Neutrogena® and Clean & Clear® products (found in the skin care/complexion care aisle at Target) and thought they'd make the perfect addition to the basket. The smell of grapefruit is one of my favorite scents so that's what initially drew me in to the Neutrogena® Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser, but once I looked at it a little closer, I realized how great it was! With an uplifting and refreshing pink grapefruit scent, it also contains maximum strength Salicylic Acid acne medicine boosted by MicroClear® Technology. This formula is great for powerfully treating and preventing breakouts (even blackheads) and the unique formula contains naturally derived grapefruit extract (seriously the best), as well as vitamin C, and it eliminates oil and dirt on skin, it also rinses clean without over-drying which I love!

The other pink Grapefruit scented item I chose was the Neutrogena® Body Clear® Body Wash - Pink Grapefruit! Talk about smelling yum! This clean rinsing and oil free acne treating body wash helps treat body acne (specifically breakouts such as breakouts on your back, shoulders and chest) with top strength salicylic acid acne fighting medicine. The naturally derived grapefruit, plus vitamin C combined with the salicylic acid are perfect for lathering up from head to toe for bubbly clean!

And then we all know mornings are difficult after staying up late (as a mama to a little one I know that especially), as with mamahood and with staying up late studying while in college, late nights and early mornings go together a lot, so when I spotted this Clean & Clear® MORNING BURST® Facial Cleanser I knew my step-daughter had to have it, and I also grabbed an extra one for myself! This unique gel facial cleanser is filled with yummy smelling and nutritious ingredients such as Vitamin C and Ginseng to wake you up in the morning with a fresh citrus scent while the soft BURSTING BEADS® burst with energy and vitamins, leaving your skin feeling clean, energized and ready to face the day!

In addition to these great skincare items, what are some thing that go well in a college care package gift basket? Here's a list below of some of my favorite things to include in gift baskets and are all things that I personally would enjoy receiving, so you know they're good! Lol.

Wire Basket or Box

• Candle

• Chocolate

• Cookies

• Tea Towel

• Notebook or Planner

• Cute Pencils or Pens

• Sticky Notes

• Page Stickers

• lip balm

• hand lotion

• nail polish

• mug

• cute jars

• fresh flowers

• gift cards

• wooden (or marble) serving board

• essential oils

• essential oil diffuser

• candy

• glass water bottle

• hair ties

The first thing to start with when creating a back to college care package/basket is find a cute basket (if you'll be giving it to them in person) or a cute box (the post office always sells cute boxes that are great for things like this) and start there! Next fill it with all the cute things you know they'll love! For this back to college care basket, I wanted to go with a more sophisticated and homey feeling theme and I just love the way it turned out! I included pomegranate chocolate candy in an adorable jar with ribbon tie around it, gluten free chocolate chip cookies in a hermetic jar (those jars are my absolute favorite, and let's face it, gluten free cookies are the best), the perfect skincare items from Neutrogena® and Clean & Clear®, pencils, sticky notes (perfect for writing class notes on), a wood and marble oval serving board (great for entertaining or just sitting on the countertop to look pretty), a lovely copper mug (can you even imagine how perfect this will be for pumpkin spice lattes in the autumn?), a cute tea towel (the farm theme is what sealed the deal, can you even deal with the cuteness? Another plus is that my step-daughter loves the farmhouse style just like I do), a yummy smelling candle (who can pass up toasted marshmallow scent? Everyone loves toasted marshmallow), a notebook (that could be used for taking notes, writing to-do lists, journaling, doodling, the list is endless), and page flags (which are great for keeping your spot in textbooks)!

Don't forget to download and check out the great deals Target is offering on the skincare items on Target's cartwheel app during the month of August: Buy 3 Neutrogena® facial skincare product, get a $5 gift card, or Buy one Clean & Clear® product, get one 25% off! For great savings on makeup, make sure to stop in at Target this weekend, Thursday-Sunday (and every weekend in August) to save 20% on Neutrogena® cosmetics on Cartwheel.

The fun thing about creating and curating gift baskets and care packages is how you can personalize and customize every single element of it, ensuring allll of the items are things are things that they'll absolutely love! Do you have a friend, niece, daughter or step-daughter heading or to or back to college this year? Will you be crating a care package or care basket for them?

This post is sponsored by CLEAN & CLEAR® and NEUTROGENA®. I only recommend products I use personally and believe my followers will also enjoy! Some of the products mentioned were provided by CLEAN & CLEAR® and NEUTROGENA® for this review.