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Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Christmas in July with Basic Invite

Don't get me wrong, I love Summer.
I adore Summer.
The swimming, the Fourth of July, the sun going down later, grilling out, sipping wine on the patio, trips to the beach...I love all of that.
But, around July-especially here in Alabama, the heat starts getting to your head & you start wishing for those cooler Fall days (which don't come until basically October down South).
And then after wistfully thinking of Fall, you start having visions of pine trees decked out in the Christmas best and homes decorated in holly and ribbon and wrapping paper galore!

Just me? I doubt it!

Seriously though, with those visions of cooler days ahead I can't help but start daydreaming about our photo Christmas cards-one of my favorite things about the holiday season.
My husband & I have done Christmas cards every single year that we've been together & almost every year, it's been a mad-rush to try to pick just the right one and get it just right in time for delivery to mail out to all of our friends and family. And guess what? I'm usually still not 100% satisfied with something about the card.

Cue Basic Invite-the card design website that gives you the ability to get everything just right (including the price).
Here are a few things that set Basic Invite apart from some of the other "Big Name" card companies out there. . .
Almost Unlimited Colors
Basic Invite is actually one of the few websites out there that allow their customers the ability to choose almost unlimited color options & you get an instant preview online. You can select and change the color of each individual element on the card with over 180 options.
This means the cards are 100% personalized to you & it greatly decreases the odds that your cards will be carbon copies of anyone else!
Custom Samples
Basic Invite is an anomaly in another area-they are one of the few websites that allow their customers to order a printed sample of their actual invite so they can see what it looks like in real life and test the paper quality as well before they commit to a full-sized order.
Over 40 Different Colors of Envelopes
Basic Invite is just as colorful with their envelopes as they are with their invitations!
They allow their customers to choose from over 40 different color options for envelopes so that they can make their invitation or card stand out before the reciever even options it.
The envelopes are also peel and seal so that the envelopes can be quickly and securely closed-with no licking required!

Address Capturing Service
Basic Invite also offers an address capturing service that allows their customers to simply share a link on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media to request their friends & family's addresses which will then be stored directly in that customers Basic Invite account & then can be selected for use during the design products.
Basic Invite also offers recipient address printing at no cost on all card orders-perfect for streamlining your Christmas card orders or even party invitations!
Foil
A beautiful addition to Basic Invite is their availability of foil designs in gold, silver, and even the ever-popular rose gold. Customers can choose from flat or raised foil on all of the foil designs that Basic Invite offers.
I had the opportunity to test out some of Basic Invites products and while I'm not quite ready for Christmas cards (I want to wait until Charlie is one in September to start planning for those photos!) I did want to test out the quality by choosing some stationary to refill our card drawer and y'all-I was so, so impressed.
It was so easy to select the different color aspects and the cards really feel personalized.
I also loved that you could adjust the different elements and change the fonts & font sizes.
It was an awesome experience & I can't wait to start working on our Christmas cards!

They even have options for your business' Christmas cards if you send those out, options start as low as $.82!
So tell me, are you getting excited for holiday photo cards too? Or maybe just for the cooler weather that comes along with all the holiday things?! πŸ˜‚
If you do decide to check out Basic Invites selection of holiday cards, make sure you use the code 15FF51 to get 15% off your order-this is an awesome deal and you'll already have something checked off of your Christmas to-do list!

Until next time. . .
xoxo, 

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Charlie: Ten Months

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Weight: 18 lbs 9 oz
Height: 28 1/2 inches long
Charlie won't have another checkup again until he's 12 months old (a whole year old!), but I do feel as though he's growing steadily!
Clothes:
I've finally cycled pretty much all of his six months clothes out of his wardrobe & he's steadily filling out the 9 month outfits, so I've been focusing on buying 12 month clothes for the end of summer & fall (it's insane that I'm thinking about Fall)
Also, if y'all have any suggestions on footie pajamas in sizes 12/18 months please let me know!
Sleep:
Charlie's sleeping great; he goes down every night at 7/7:30 and wakes up between 7/7:30 in the morning.
He'll take his first nap at 9:30 AM and his second nap at 1:30 PM
He's an awesome sleeper!
Schedule:
Charlie loves his Mom's on Call schedule. We technically are somewhere between the 6-7 month and the 8-10 month schedule and I don't foresee us moving to the 11 month schedule because it's not breastfeeding friendly.
Health:
Charlie is still a super healthy guy!
He had his 9 month checkup at the end of June & his pediatrician was very impressed with his lack of sick visits this year. He did have some sort of slight summer cold the past week or two, but it cleared up on it's own and didn't really effect him.
Crying:
Very little crying for our sweet, loving guy.
Pretty much unless he's overtired he's a happy, go-lucky kind of boy.
Likes:
Charlie still loves to eat: his current faves are berries, mango, green peas, and any and all breakfast foods.
Sitting in his own chair.
Riding on his toy truck, tractor, or car.
Petting Forrest
Playing outside
Dislikes:
Strangers
Hats (most of the time)
Having his diaper changed/laying on his changing table
Milestones:
Has four teeth
Began pulling up on furniture
Can cruise along furniture or holding someone's hands
Experienced his first Fourth of July
Can now sit at the table in his booster seat without the tray (if needed)
Places You've Gone:
Sand Harbor Fireworks
Mama & Charlie's Favorites:
Don't get me wrong, I love Charlie in a sweet bubble or jonjon, but as we slowly inch toward one year I am trying to put him in more separates like these short & shirt combos (that are still SO sweet!
They just look a little bit more mature, but don't worry-we're still going to wear our bubbles as long as Daddy will let us!
Charlie is a really independent little guy who loves practicing using a fork, I picked these up from Target in a pack of three for four dollars and they work really well for him.
They even have a little kickstand under the bottom so that the tines don't touch the table when he sits the fork down.
I've gone back and forth trying to find a sippy cup for Charlie.
He doesn't take a bottle often, so I didn't want to start that after he was a year old so we tried several different cups. Our pediatrician recommended that we only use a straw or 360 type cup (for his teeth) and so we stuck with this one and he's actually really getting good at using it!
Charlie got a lovie blankie from this brand at one of my baby showers & he loves it so much.
He doesn't take a paci anymore and so he uses this when he goes down for a nap and to sleep at night.
Charlie has several of these "Noisy" books and he loves them all!
They have textures to feel, sounds to play, and words to have a story.
These books are also super durable and are some of the only ones I can leave out for him to look at because they're very difficult to tear up.
My parents got Charlie this riding truck as a gift and he loves it so much.
He not only likes to sit on it and push the buttons and push himself around the floor, he also loves to push it around and practice walking.
It also has a little storage inside of the seat and so he keeps some toys in there, too πŸ˜‰
Out of all of the things that are on this months list, these are the one thing you should immediately add to your cart!
I have two silicone placemats, but they don't work in every single restaurant (if the tabletop is textured or if there is a fabric topper on the table), so these sticky placemats work great.
They have a sticky strip on four sides and you just peel it off and stick them to the table.
They come off pretty cleanly (the residue comes off with soap and water) and Charlie hasn't torn one off yet which is saying something because he definitely tries.
These that I have come in three packs of twenty so I just toss one twenty-count in his diaper bag. They're also pretty to look at!


Well y'all, the next time I share our boy will be eleven months old-and then a year!


Until next time. . .
xoxo, 

Saturday, July 6, 2019

73 Questions with Jordyn

 The idea of this post came from one of my favorite (Alabama!) bloggers, Dorothy over at Prep in Your Step. She apparently got these questions from something Vogue does, but to be honest-I barely have time to read the nutrition label on food, much less many magazines right now. πŸ˜‚
I loved her answers so much that I decided I wanted to participate too, so here goes!
1. What is something that you can't live without? My family; seriously without Chris, Charlie, & Forrest I'd probably go crazy. 

2. What is a secret talent of yours? This may not be a talent, per say but I can always find something to eat in the kitchen. If I'm given enough time, I can whip something that tastes pretty good up.

3. What are 3 words to describe yourself? Imaginative, Passionate, Anxious

4. Where do you get inspiration from? Quiet mornings spent with coffee out on the deck or patio

5. What is your favorite animal? Horses, but I do love Forrest-our black lab!

6. What is your favorite snack food? Chips! I'm a sucker for a good chip; Doritos, Cheddar & Sour Cream, Dill Pickle, or Salt & Vinegar

7. What is your favorite piece of makeup? BareMinerals Invisible Glow Powder Highlighter It has the most perfect sheer highlight that never looks caked on, only perfectly glowy

8. What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? To just enjoy every single moment with Charlie. I've taken it to heart & tried to be really intentional with him, even in the harder moments.

9. What is the last book that you read? Currently reading Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered

10. What is your favorite genre of music? Country; specifically late 90's/early 2000's

11. What celebrity do you want to be BFF's with? Ree Drummond

12. What is your biggest regret? Not spending more time with my sweet Grandma

13. What is one thing on your bucket list? To take a trip outside of the U.S.A. Neither Chris or I have been & I'm dying to go somewhere exciting; Paris, Spain, the Bahamas, etc.

14. What is your favorite quote? "Some old-fashioned things like fresh air & sunshine are hard to beat." -Laura Ingalls Wilder

15. What is your favorite sport to play & to watch? I've never really been a big playing sports kind of person, but if horseback riding applies then I vote for that. To watch; Auburn-any sport, I just enjoy watching Auburn play!

16. What is your favorite place that you have ever visited? Savannah, GA

17. What is your guilty pleasure? A Hulu/Netflix marathon

18. What is your biggest achievement? Becoming Charlie's Mama. All of the degrees and accolades don't really mean anything close to what he means.

19. What is the best thing to happen to you this month? Well, it's early in July yet-but the Fourth of July was impeccable. Getting to snuggle up to my sleeping boy on a boat dock watching fireworks, it doesn't get any better than that.

20. What is your go to coffee order? Typically, an iced caramel macchiato 

21. What is your favorite non-alcoholic beverage? Coffee or water; that's pretty much the only two things I drink other than the occasional glass of milk.

22. What is your favorite alcoholic beverage? Vodka cranberry with a splash of orange juice.

23. What is your favorite movie? 8 Seconds

24. What is something that you can't do but wish you could? Sing! I'm seriously the worst, but I love to do it. πŸ˜‚

25. What is a bad habit of yours? My quick temper! Seriously, I can usually control it but Chris could tell y'all how bad it is. I'm also the queen of holding grudges which is awful.

26. If you could have someone else's closet, whose would it be? See number 11; I bet her boot collection is crazy good!

27. Favorite way to spend a rainy day? Sleeping in and then snacks in front of a movie or curled up reading a good book.

28. What is an ideal date? Dinner & drinks followed by a stroll somewhere.

29. Where is your favorite place to be? The farm. I love to go on vacations, but I feel the most at peace when I'm on our farmland and can't wait to have a house built there.

30. What is your favorite day of the week? Honestly, as a stay-at-home mom pretty much every day is the same. But I really enjoy Saturdays because Chris usually tries to spend some more relaxed time with us which I enjoy!

31. What is your favorite type of breakfast food? An omelet bar! Seriously, when we stay in hotels that offer this at their breakfast I always make Chris take me.

32. What is your favorite meal to have for dinner? If we're dreaming big here I'm going to say fried chicken with mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, and then some kind of green salad to make me feel better about myself πŸ˜‰

33. What is your favorite color? I think blue.

34. What is your guilty pleasure TV show? Harlots on Hulu, it's so bad it's good.

35. What is the first thing you do when you wake up? Go to the bathroom, then get Charlie.

36. What is your favorite season? Fall

37. What are your three favorite holidays? Christmas, Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving

38. How do you relax? Binging on TV. It's how I tune out at the end of the day.

39. What makes you smile the most? A thoughtful gift. The ones that make you realize people really do know you. ❤

40. What is the best gift you've ever received? My parents bought my favorite horse, my Paint, for me and I will always thank them for that. She was my once-in-a-lifetime horse.

41. If you had a tattoo, what would it be & where would it be? I've made it to 26 without a tattoo, so I probably won't be getting one but if I did, I've always wanted  a small stick horse figure about the size of a quarter, maybe behind my ear or on an ankle, in remembrance of my Paint.

42. What is a travel must have? My own pillow & blanket (& a small fan if where I'm staying doesn't have one!)

43. What is your favorite clothing brand or store? Lilly Pulitzer 

44. What is your favorite smell? Freshly mown grass or Charlie's hair after a bath

45. Who is the last person you texted? Christopher.

46. When was the last time you cried? Hmmm, I want to say maybe a week ago but I can't remember exactly which I think is a good thing.

47. What is your least favorite food? Spam. I just find the idea of it disgusting.

48. What is your least favorite word? Moist, once again I just find the thought of saying that word icky.

49. What is your pet peeve? When people can't make eye contact when they talk to you.

50. What is your favorite time of day? It's usually about 9 o'clock, when Charlie is in the bed, Chris is napping on the couch before bed, the kitchen is cleaned up, & I finally get to take a few minutes for myself to veg-out with a tv show and a cup of hot tea.

51. If you could travel with anyone, who would it be? Since I feel like Chris is the obvious choice, if it couldn't be my husband I think my sister, Trystan. She and I are so similar and I feel like we would beach well together.

52. Do you prefer vintage or new? Depends; new clothes and vintage furniture and housewares.

53. When is your birthday & what is your sign? June 13th which makes me a Gemini.

54. What is a skill that you are working on? Gardening, I'm constantly trying new things on my back porch garden & am loving learning more about my plants!

55. What is your dream job? I love what I do now-being a stay-at-home mom & helping on the farm. But I also think that I would love to do something with interior design.

56. If you could live anywhere in the country, where would you live? Well, if the farm is too obvious of an answer I would have to say the only other place I would want to live is Auburn.

57. What are some of your favorite baby names? Well, I obviously loved Charles Levi because that's Charlie's name. We also liked William, Winder, and Sawyer. For girls, I liked Collins, Austen, & Kennedy.

58. Are you an introvert or extrovert? I would say that I used to be an extrovert, but now I definitely get my energy from being by myself.

59. What is your first car? A 2006 black Chevrolet Silverado

60. What was your first screen name? Gosh, I wish I could remember. Since I don't, I'll share my first email address which was dixiegirl2003_80 πŸ˜‚ Needless to say, I will always remember the year we got the internet because that's how I chose the "2003" in there.

61. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Bluebell Pecan Praline & Cream

62. What is your favorite fashion trend of all time? Definitely the boho style.

63. How would you describe your style? Southern Boho

64. If you could have one superpower, what would it be? To control time

65. What is your favorite curse word? Whichever one fits the current situation

66. What is the priciest thing you've ever splurged on? My Expedition.

67. What is one item that you must have in your purse at all times? Lipstick

68. Where does one go on a perfect road trip? 30A, of course.

69. Do you prefer cooking or baking? Probably baking

70. Are you a shoe or a handbag gal? Neither, really but I would probably say shoes.

71. How would you like to be remembered? As a good wife & mother, a classic lady, someone who gives back to her community

72. What is your favorite board game? LIFE! Is there really any other option? That will forever me my favorite.

73. What do you first notice about someone when you meet them? Whether their vibe seems sincere or not. I feel like I can pretty much tell that within a few minutes.

If you feel so inclined, leave me an answer to some of these questions below!

Until next time. . .
xoxo, 

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Ten on Tuesday [No.58]

It's so wild to think that I haven't put together a Ten on Tuesday post since April!
That feels like honestly a million years ago & yesterday all at the same time.
I think having a baby will do that to you.

In all seriousness though, Charlie is at such a fun age now-each month gets better & more fun in my opinion. However, each new month also comes with its own challenges.
Right now he's becoming increasingly mobile and I'm constantly going from thing to thing making sure he's staying out of trouble.
Most days, it's all I can do to keep the house from being a total wreck and occasionally throwing a load of laundry in the house, while keeping him fed and occupied-but I know these days will fly by too, so I'm trying to just enjoy each second!
And along with that...I'm going to try to return to Ten on Tuesdays, at least a little more frequently πŸ˜‰
ONE
It seems like forever ago now, but in May Christopher & I had the opportunity to visit the Capital and meet with our legislators and Governor.
We were recognized on both the House & Senate floors as well as in the Governors office for our recent wins within the Alabama Farmers Federation & the American Farm Bureau.
I want to do a full post about this ASAP, it's just getting it put together that's got to happen!
This photo is from us on the lawn on the State House.
TWO
This succotash recipe sounds so good right now!
It's the perfect summertime side (for your Fourth of July gathering, perhaps?)
It's got okra, bacon, red onion, corn, tomatoes, fresh basil, and more-so many yummy things!
THREE
Typically, we don't actually really celebrate my birthday on my birthday.
I usually get presents & we will grab takeout from a local restaurant, but there isn't usually a full date-fortunately that worked out to happen this year, so that was really exciting!
We left around 3ish, leaving Charlie with my sister, and headed toward one of my favorite cities-Auburn!
We took in the farmers market, stopped by the University's meat lab to grab some summer sausage, link sausage, and pork chops, and then headed to downtown Opelika.
We strolled through a consignment shop I had my eye on and took in a few beers at Red Clay Brewing (this hard cherry cider is brewed in house & was AMAZING), and then we finished with dinner at my favorite restaurant, Acre.
Highly recommend if you're ever in Auburn.
FOUR
I love a good, simple lunch recipe like chicken salad.
This Southern Living honey chicken salad sounds like a fun spin...but I would leave out the celery πŸ˜‰
FIVE
This little guy has been growing like a weed!
We started baby led weaning when he was about 6-7 months old and haven't looked back.
He's taken so much ownership & independence of his own eating and we love how much he's tried-simply because he wants to!
He will try almost anything and loves so many different foods.
SIX
I have gone on a total binge of the show Bones on Hulu and I'm not even a little bit sorry.
I remember watching it a little bit when it was still on tv, but never really getting into it.
I'm just now starting season 11 out of 12 and I'm so not ready for it to be over!
If you watched Bones (or Castle or Body of Proof) let me know of some other similar shows I might like!
SEVEN
I still have early mornings sometimes with Charlie, but I'm not usually as on-the-go as I used to be, so now I typically take the time to cook a real breakfast for Charlie and I.
But when I am trying to be speedy, this is a typical breakfast for me as I run out the door.
I ice down a Venti Starbucks cup, pour up a caramel Premier Protein (that's been refrigerated overnight), and then I'll either add coffee if I have time to brew my own-or I'll pour in one of these High Brew cold brew coffees in salted caramel.
Then I'll just mix it around with my straw and sip it as I rush through my morning, it's delicious and will keep me full 'til lunch.
EIGHT
I recently was wandering around Ulta (dangerous, I know) and had a 20% off coupon.
I decided to add this rose lip balm to my basket & I have adored from the moment I tried it.
It's so hydrating and the rose isn't too overpowering. It feels a lot more luxurious than the price tag.
NINE
 Each year, my back porch garden grows more & more.
I started out with just four pedestal pots and now I've added four planters that sit on top of the rail, four hanging baskets, and countless other small potted plants sitting around.
I've branched out from just flowers to herbs as well.
It's one of the biggest things that I gather peace and pleasure in during this time of year & it's been so fun to see Charlie enjoy it this year as well.

My plants have grown and changed a lot since I took these pictures, but they all still look beautiful!
TEN
I haven't gotten a chance to share many of these family pictures we had done, but I wanted to at least share one right here because I just love them so much!
This is our farm where we'll one day build our forever home & we were able to have Forrest in these pictures as well which is so special to me.
I can't wait to do more pictures when Fall rolls around, family pictures just are so precious and my husband tolerates me so well.

Well y'all, that's all I've got for right now but I would love to hear you sound off below with something new that's happening with you!
Until next time. . .
xoxo, 
09 10