Please tell me Fall has come for some of you? Since my last post, I’ve had a change of heart about our summer heat that doesn’t want to leave the East Bay. I’m officially ready for cooler months, homemade soups, pumpkin everything, and the changing leaves. Yesterday, I stopped at Trader Joes and was thrilled to see the gorgeous piles of gourds and pumpkins! These things make me so happy! I love seasons so come on Fall, hurry up! I also love a great checkered print which is on trend for Fall style. This white royal blue checkered print top is true to size (I’m wearing a small). The contrasting neckline pattern is so cute and I love that it hits at just the right spot above the hip making it perfect to wear with jeans or tucked in to a skirt. You know I love a good sale and this is currently on sale for $11 from $34. Yep, I said $11. Grab it here! Shop the rest of the look at the end of this post.
Although Halloween and Thanksgiving decor is fully stocked in all major department stores, we continue to soak up the final days of summer in the East Bay! The heat still has me grabbing tunics and sundresses, and I’m not complaining. Designed with a California State of Mind, Green Dragon (found in Nordstrom and retailers across the globe) is a boho-inspired line that caters to the contemporary woman. The pieces can be worn from the beach to the restaurant or over a swimsuit. As a busy mom of two and a California girl at heart, this line fits perfectly into my life + style!
Riviera Palais Tunic on SALE now! Original price $94, now on sale for $33! Grab it here! Everything else in both looks is shoppable here including the Southwest Scarf Dot Romper (so luxurious feeling) pictured below! I can’t wait to style it with booties and a jacket for Fall.
Back to school is an exciting time for all! A good friend said it best on her Facebook page, “First day of school! Yay! Parents be popping champs everywhere”. The idea of champagne sounds amazing but a fancy coffee (meaning not from my Keurig) and a quiet morning after a successful send off is as good of a celebration as any in my book! I’ll cash in on the mimosa over a ladies brunch on the weekend. The truth of the matter is though, the first week or two of Back to School is often complete mayhem in the mornings. Getting out the door on time is a struggle and we all seem to become a hot mess. Congrats to those mom’s who nail it on the first day, but this is just not our family. It takes a few practice runs to get out of the lazy summer morning habit and back on track with a more timely regimen. Routine! Routine! Routine! You’ve heard it before, but today’s post is a friendly reminder about how to de-stress your morning by implementing a solid routine. We seem to have things back on track and I’ve finally had my fancy coffee and quiet breakfast celebration. Below are a few of my favorite tips to help you with the morning struggle.
Do it the night before – This is by far the most important tip to remember and implement. Ask yourself, “What can be done the night before to save time in the morning?” When you really stop to think about it, you realize so much can be done the night before. Once you create this habit, your morning will be much calmer and organized. Pack lunches, lay out clothing, have homework or school papers signed and in school bags, tidy up the house, do all dishes, and bathe the kids the night before. Don’t forget about YOU! Pick out your clothing, shower and do your hair the night before (if you can). The less you have to do for yourself, the more you can be free to deal with any hiccups in your morning routine.
Mom get up 15 minutes earlier – This was hard for me because my son likes to climb in my bed early in the morning to cuddle (and often falls back asleep in my arms). Like many mom’s I cherish this time SO MUCH! I would let it last as long as possible because I’m dreading the day he stops this morning ritual and becomes too old to want mommy cuddles. I should probably prepare my husband for a complete meltdown when this unavoidable moment happens, but let’s get back to my point. The problem with this situation, is that I’d be scrambling to get out the door because I laid in bed with my son too long, and everyone paid the price. Lesson quickly learned/remembered–> Summer is over, mommy! I still cuddle with my son, but I make sure that I’m in charge of the wake up time. If he is still sleeping, I slip out 15 minutes earlier to make my coffee and start breakfast. The key is to stay ahead of the morning schedule.
Teach children to DIY – Encourage your children to wake up and immediately dress themselves in the clothing that you conveniently laid out the night before. If they like to choose their clothing, then let them pick an outfit the night before. Put cereal and bowls accessible so that they want to help get breakfast ready. How many times have you heard, “I can’t find my shoe(s)!” Have your children put their shoes by the door the night before so that you don’t waste 5 minutes searching for the missing shoe(s)! Create a chart listing out the morning routine, post it on the refrigerator and encourage them to do as much of the list they can, all on their own.
Reward when ready – This relates to #3. If they are ready on time or earlier, then praise them for doing much of it themselves and consider using a reward system. Maybe they get to watch 5 minutes of a cartoon, choose dessert that night, or read an extra chapter of Harry Potter. These rewards work great in our house. My personal favorite is the cartoon because it gives me a few quiet minutes to finish up anything for myself, and it keeps them from wrecking havoc on the house that I worked so hard to tidy up the night before. A reward system encourages children to repeat a positive behavior which in turn will create good habits. A calm and organized morning is definitely a good habit to create!
Manage bedtime – During the summer months kids are often up later than during the school year. It takes a little time to readjust from those late nights, but focus on getting them back in bed at the same time every night. It’s easy to forget how much the bedtime routine impacts the morning routine, until you start struggling with a grumpy over-tired kid in the morning. Eat dinner earlier, read earlier, eliminate any technology or TV before bed, and make their bedrooms as dark as possible if the sun hasn’t set yet. I always love when the time changes and we “Fall Back” because bedtime becomes much easier. BTW, the time change happens November 6th of this year.
Mornings set the tone for the day so implementing these simple tips/reminders can help make your mornings happy, healthy, and focused! Happy Back to School all!
I love finding brands that focus on making mom’s feel beautiful, so I’m excited to bring y’all a great collaboration with PinkBlush! The brand carries maternity and non maternity clothing that are comfortable, affordable, and trendy. So, this is a great giveaway for both my fashionable female readers and my fashionable pregnant soon-to-be mammas! A classic wrap dress like the one I’m wearing is always in style and this black floral print is so pretty! PinkBlush and a glaMoMorous life are giving one lucky winner a $75 gift card to shop! Check out all their great clothing and accessories here. Here’s how to enter:
Once a year, Mike and I take a week-long trip without the kids. Yep, I said without! It’s a time for us to focus on each other and we truly cherish this time alone to connect. I should mention that this trip wouldn’t even possible without the loving help of some pretty amazing grandparents! This year we decided to spend our week on the Northern Coast of California in Mendocino and Bodega Bay. We’ve been to both areas before, and you can read about Bodega Bay here. If you haven’t been to Mendocino, I highly recommend visiting. This part of California feels less traveled, rural, and holds the most beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean. Not to mention the Redwoods literally took my breath away. They are gargantuan! While many visit just to relax on the beach there is much to do in this area for the adventurous at heart. Kayaking, hiking, wine tasting, and great dinning.
Hard to beat the Littler River Inn’s location. Great food, service, golfing, and offers some pet friendly rooms.
Even if you aren’t lodging here, stop at the Little River Inn Bar/Restaurant to enjoy this famous view over a glass of wine! Great food & service, we loved the fish and chips.Seafood is plentiful and so fresh.
Hiking the Redwoods.
Hiking the Hendy Woods State Park. The Hermut Hut Trail leads hikers to one of Hendy Hermit’s famous huts. The man lived in the park for over a decade. Pretty amazing. Learn more here.Anderson Valley has many fantastic wineries and is well known for producing outstanding Pinot Noir. Other favorite wineries not pictured were Handley Cellars, and Baxter. Fantastic wines!
Most of the wineries are pet friendly. Our pup, Louis was very popular amongst the tasting crowd.
We dug the rustic and unpretentious tasting space at Phillips Hill.
Mendocino art is everywhere.
On your drive to or from Mendocino, stop at the World Famous Hamburger Ranch & Bar-b-que in Cloverdale. Owners Bob and Joanne Krucker know what they are doing when it comes to BBQ. Everything is cooked slow and low for the most mouthwatering brisket, ribs, chicken and more!