Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Gift Guide: Toddler Girls

Good morning, I’m so excited for today’s post- a gift guide for toddlers because shopping for the girls is my favorite! They are at such a fun age and the magic will only grow over the next couple of years. I started my holiday shopping early this year and I only have two gifts left to buy! Unfortunately, I’ve also over shopped for them and will be putting some of their gifts away for good behavior. We're going to be doing a massive purge in the toy room and donating all of their toys this weekend.

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Letters Puzzle // Opposites Puzzle // Stroller // High Chair // Shopkins // Trolls
Little People Set- Mickey and Princess // FurReal Friends // BookRoo // Tea Set // Blocks


My favorite gifts for the girls are ones that help their creativity and pretend play. The kitchen and play food from last year is probably one of their most played with gifts, they both love to “make” food and it’s a gift that has been great for them both. Ellie has a “big girl” tea set she likes to play with so Emma will be getting her own this one this year. The girls are both into playing house and carry dolls around with them all over the house pretending to feed and talk to them. They’re gonna flip when they see their new dolls, stroller, and high chair!

We love gifts that we can play together like Don't Break the Ice, which was a HUGE hit this past year and we recently got into puzzles. I ordered this adorable block letter set after Veronika’s post and I can’t wait for them to open it! It came last night and it's so cute! The colors are beautiful too. I found a great opposites puzzle  too I can’t wait to give Ellie.

The girls love little figurines and Ellie enjoys pretend play with them, creating all kinds of scenarios and scenes with them (mostly mom/baby, or friend/friend situations). We have a few Little People sets so each girl will be getting their own this year, Ellie has been obsessed with this Mickey Mouse one we gifted to a friend earlier this year and Emma is getting her own princess castle to start her collection. The girls create huge towers for their princesses so we need another set of blocks for more, larger towers!

Shopkins is all the rage with the girls right now and Ellie has been asking for some since her birthday, so I can’t wait for her to open this gift! We haven’t seen the Trolls movie yet, but I know it’s gonna be a huge hit in our house, so I’m getting the girls ready to watch with these cute figurines. This FurReal Friend is going to be so cute! Matt’s mom got it for Ellie and it keeps going off unexpectedly so I think it will be fun for me too (-__-).

We love experience gifts- tickets for shows (we’re heading to Disney on Ice in January!), zoo passes, or box subscriptions. We discovered BookRoo this year and the girls LOVE getting packages in the mail! Each board book box has three books, each individually wrapped, and we’ve all loved adding to our library. Each box has handpicked books from several families and we’ve always had books that I’ve never seen/heard of that the girls just adore. We like to trade off between board and story books and it’s one subscription we’ll definitely keep doing! Use code KRILAW for $10 off your first order!

For stocking stuffers, I put a mix of snacks and a bit of candy, but focus more on smaller toys. Every year, I include new boxes of crayons- chubby ones for Emma and Twistables for Ellie (they’re perfect for travel!), stickers, paints, travel color books, Beanie Babies, and a few bows and headbands. I love watching them lay on their bellies coloring together- it makes my heart swell! For Emma I’ll stash new cups, child utensils, bath toys, socks, and puffs. For Ellie, I’ve found slap bracelets, cute knee socks, and small toy figurines. Oh, and you can’t forget the orange at the bottom of the stocking!

What are you getting for your littles this holiday? What are they most excited about?

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Recipe: Candied Nuts

Today I have one of my favorite recipes to share with you, I'm so excited! My grandmother was a wonderful baker and two things I learned from her is there's always room for treats and that treats have a season. I loved everything she baked and always looked forward to holidays and celebrations to have our special treats. Divinity for weddings, strawberry cake with coconut frosting for Valentines, raisin cake for birthdays, rice balls for Halloween, and sugar cookies for Christmas. It was a fun tradition and made each celebration even more special.

I don't have a lot of treats under my belt yet (I'm going to try her pecan crunch this year!), but I make some amazing candied nuts! I make them every Christmas and they're so easy! I love any recipe that has items I have on hand and is simple to make. Matt asks for these every year earlier and earlier, they're great for camping, snacks, crushed up in salads, and treats for neighbors, friends, and coworkers.

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Ingredients 
1 egg white
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon water
1 pound almonds or pecans
3/4 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 ½ teaspoons of fine grain sea salt

Directions 
1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mats.
2. In a large bowl, combine egg white, vanilla extract and water. Beat mixture until frothy.
3. Stir in almonds and mix to coat.
4. In a separate bowl,  gently combine sugar, cinnamon, and sea salt and stir into almond mixture, thoroughly coating all nuts.
5. Evenly spread nuts onto prepared baking sheet and place into oven.
6. Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
7. Let cool then enjoy!

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I love them warm, but they are a bit soft while warm. Don't worry, they'll harden as they cool. They will last up to two weeks when stored in an air tight container. I usually make them with almonds for gifts, but this year I made a batch of each to mix and share with friends.

What's your favorite recipe for the holiday season?

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

OOTD: Pin Stripes and Ruffles

Happy Tuesday everyone! I'm still recovering from Thanksgiving weekend, but I'm so excited that the holidays have officially started. We've had our tree, lights, and home decor up for a few weeks now, my shopping is almost done, and on Sunday we started our holiday baking. This year is going to be so much fun with the girls and I have so many things I want us to do as a family!

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Sunday, November 20, 2016

Gift Guide for Her: 25 under $25

Christmas shopping is a ton of fun, but sometimes it can be a bit daunting if you have a long list or you're not sure what to get for who. I started early this year, I have the girls done and I'm half done with everyone else. Just waiting for Black Friday deals to finish off my list. In our family we have a $25 limit per person so as I was racking my brain for ideas for the ladies and myself, I thought I'd share some goodies on my list!

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

6 Beauty Products for a Busy Morning!

Good morning!! My mornings can be pretty hectic and I'm working on a post with my morning routine now that I have two kiddos I need to get up and out the door, and I wanted to share my favorite beauty products I use every morning. For hair and makeup, I give myself 20-30 minutes, just depending on what my schedule is going to look like that day. I would love to be able to do a full face every day, but sometimes it's just not doable so here are the six products I rely on for an easy and pulled together look.
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