Friday, November 22, 2019

Five on Friday - Barefoot Dreams Throw Dupe, Perfect Coffee at Home, and Disney+

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Happy Friday, y’all!  Well, we survived this crazy busy week and now we’re heading into an equally crazy busy weekend!  Here are some favorites from the week for you…

O N E – Barefoot Dreams Throw Dupe

I’ve seen this Barefoot Dreams throw all over social media (along with their cardigan) and as I’ve said many times before on the blog, I just can’t bring myself to spend that kind of money on those items.  Well, I’ve recently seen a couple of different people mention that Pottery Barn now has a throw that’s equally as wonderful as the Barefoot Dreams throw, but for a fraction of the cost. 

I hopped on over to the website to have a look and saw that for a limited time you can snag their cozy pom pom throw for just $29 and they’re also offering free shipping!  It comes in seven different colors, it’s made from 100% polyester exactly as the Barefoot Dreams throw is, and in my opinion the Pottery Barn throw is even better because it has pom poms, y’all!  I mean, $29 verses $147?  #NoBrainer 

It would be the perfect gift for your momma, your mother-in-law, a girlfriend, or your child’s teacher!  So cozy!  And so affordable.  :o) 

T W O – Perfect Coffee at Home

I don’t drink coffee every day but I do love to treat myself to Starbucks every now and then since I love it so much.  My favorites are the “frou-frou” drinks like the PSL, the Salted Caramel Latte, and the Peppermint Mocha… I obviously don’t need coffee for the caffeine so I pretty much just drink it for my enjoyment. 

I’ve tried for years to find a way to make something equally as tasty at home, but I’ve failed time and time again.  I’ve just never been able to find a creamer that holds a candle to my syrupy-sweet lattes from the real place. 

Well, I stumbled upon these Peppermint Mocha k-cups last week at Target and decided I’d give them a whirl although I didn’t have high expectations since I didn’t love their at-home version of the PSL that I tried last year.  Well, surprise!!  These are so good… I’d say they’re about 90% as good as the real thing straight from Starbucks.  That is a huge win in my book since I’ve tried (and wasted) so many coffee and creamer combinations over the years.

Now if I could just figure out a way to make a healthier version that tasted as good…

T H R E E – Disney+

Well, we drank the Koolaide, y’all.  We signed up for Disney+!  We honestly weren’t even sure that we would need or want it, but after discovering that the new Disney Christmas movie, Noelle, was only available on Disney+ I told B I wanted to sign up for one month so we could watch that and explore what all they have to offer.  Well, B took it a step further and he just went ahead and signed up for the entire year and I’m not complaining.  (If you sign up for a whole year, the cost averages out to just $5.83 per month which is cheaper than the $6.99 you would pay month to month.) 

Let me tell you, we are loving it!  We’ve already gotten our money’s worth of the first month and we’re only a few days in!  Haha.  The first night we had it we did lots of exploring and I was thrilled to see that they have the Home Alone movies, the Santa Clause movies, the Mighty Ducks movies, the Honey I Shrunk the Kids movies, and so many other favorites from my childhood that I want to watch with the kids.

Since we started our subscription last week, we’ve already watched Noelle (so cute!) and many of the Pixar shorts (some multiple times) as a family, and the kids have already delved into Puppy Dog Pals as well as one of the Star Wars movies.  Oh, and let’s not forget The Mandalorian!  B is loving that.

I’ve had several people ask me if I think the cost is worth it and right now I’m going with a resounding YES.  Unlimited access to the entire Disney collection for only $6.99 per month??  Yes, please!  Our kiddos are choosing it over Netflix every single time that they get the chance to watch TV now. 

B did a little digging to see if there was any way to get a deal on Disney+ and he found that Rakuten (formerly Ebates) does give you cash back if you sign up for Disney+ through them.  They have the following deals right now:

$10 cash back on Disney+ Annual Subscription ($69.99/year)
$7.50 cash back on Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ Bundle Subscription ($12.99/month)
$5.00 cash back on Disney+ Monthly Subscription ($6.99/month)

If you’re not a Rakuten member, you can sign up here for free, and by using our referral link you’ll get $10!  That’ll pay for your first two months of Disney+!

F O U R – Home Alone 2 Children’s Book

This is Peter McCallister, the faaaather. 

My gosh, Home Alone 2 is one of the best movies of all time.  I’ve seen it hundreds of times and it never gets old.  I love it so much I even dragged Brian to The Plaza Hotel when we went to NYC the first time because I just had to visit the famous hotel from the movie.  :o)

You may remember that last year I told y’all about this Home Alone children’s book?  It’s one of our favorites!  Well, I just found out yesterday that the Home Alone 2 children’s book was just released in October!

I bought a copy for our house as well as my brother’s kiddos and I’m eagerly awaiting our copy.  It is a must-have for our household and it’s one that I’m sure I’ll save forever and ever.  Yet another great gift idea for so many people on your list!

And Cheryl, if you’re reading this, just act surprised at Christmas.  Lol.

F I V E – Ancestry DNA

My dad received an Ancestry DNA kit as a gift a while back and he finally got his results a few weeks ago.  We were all surprised to find out that we’re part Norwegian!  None of us were aware of our Norwegian roots, so it was definitely unexpected… especially since the percentage is that high.  My father-in-law is fully Norwegian so Brian should be about 1/2 Norwegian which means our kiddos are probably about 1/4 Norwegian, but now we know they get it from my side of the family, too.  Crazy!

I’ve been wanting to do one of the DNA tests to find out my makeup, and now I’m even more curious to see what other stuff pops up from my mom’s side of the family!  Add it to the wish list!  They're 40% off right now!

Friday funnies… 

Yes, yes it is more cat memes.  And this past week I've become obsessed with all of the college football ones.  I literally LOL at every single one.  I think I have a problem.  Hahahaha.  And, AU, Bama, and Florida fans, please know that I love all of y'all... these are just too funny not to post!  And yes, I've seen ones making fun of Georgia and, yes, I laugh at those, too.  Haha.

ICYMI, this week’s blog posts…

Happy Friday, y’all! 

*Linking up with A Little Bit of Everything for Friday Favoriteand Della Devoted for High Five for Friday.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

What I Wore - October 2019

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Well, we’re more than halfway through the month and I’m just finding the time to recap my outfits from October.  Whoops!  I’ve been rolling right through some blog posts trying to get a little bit ahead so I can take some time off from it during Thanksgiving week, so I’m going to keep the chit chat to a minimum today. 

As you can see, October started out brutally hot and then moved to cold by the end.  Finally!  And also, I somehow managed to forget to take a picture on 10/14, so I have no clue what I wore that day.  

As always, I've linked as many items as I could beneath each picture in case you see something you like!

October 1 - Button-Down Tank

October 2 - Leggings

October 3 - Twist Front Top

October 4 -

October 5 - Swing Dress // Brown Saltwater Sandals

October 6 - Plaid Top // Rainbow Dress // Brown Saltwater Sandals

October 7 - Leggings

October 8 - Peplum Top

October 9 -

October 10 - Lavender Top // Cardigan

October 11 - Graphic Tee Similar // Cardigan // Adult Natives // Brown Saltwater Sandals

October 12 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 13 - White Waffle Peplum Top Similar // Star Tunic // Brown Saltwater Sandals

October 15 - Twist-Front Top // Hunter Boots Similar

October 16 - Peplum Top

October 17 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 17 (evening) - Tunic // Zella Live-In Leggings

October 18 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 19 -

October 20 - Striped Peplum Top // Brown Saltwater Sandals

October 21 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 22 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 23 - White Waffle Peplum Top Similar

October 24 - 

October 25 - Adult Natives

October 26 - Twist Front Top

October 27 (morning) - Ruffle Dot Dress

October 27 - Adult Natives

October 28 - Twist-Front Top

October 29 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 30 - Zella Live-In Leggings

October 31 - Adult Natives

Happy Wednesday!

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Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Our Week - The One with All the Christmas Decorating

Remember how busy we were the week before last?  Well, this past week was the exact opposite of that and it was just what the doctor ordered.  I feel so refreshed, so caught up on the little things, and so relaxed, and that’s exactly how I need to feel since we’re heading into yet another crazy busy week. 

Monday, November 11

Monday was Veterans Day, but our kids weren’t out of school this year like they usually are, so it was business as usual for us.  I had a dentist appointment first thing to check the status of my TMJ and everything is going so well that they pushed my next check-up out by four months.  I’m hoping that means that I’ll be released soon.  I’m still clinching some at night, but my essential oils have helped tremendously with that.  And this new bite guard I’ve been using has been doing a way better job of protecting my teeth and jaw when I do clinch, so overall I’m feeling much better in that department.

Monday evening we finally had a chance to start watching The Little Mermaid Live that we had recorded from the previous week and I started taking down our fall decorations and putting up our Christmas mantle.  Ready or not, Christmas time is almost here!

Tuesday, November 12

Tuesday I had a meeting at the school for our annual ball, and then it was off to run a bunch of errands – Target, Fresh Market, Michaels, Dollar Tree, and Hobby Lobby.  After errands I made it back home to squeeze in a few loads of laundry and get caught up on some sponsored work, and then it was time to go pick up the kids.

After pick-up, I swung through the Dairy Queen drive-through and surprised the kids with Blizzards for their snack, and then the three of us had our bi-annual dental cleanings.  All three of us came away cavity-free!  Woo hoo! 

Wednesday, November 13

Wednesday I worked on the blog most of the day, and I also finished decorating my rainbow tree in my office.  You can see more about the tree here… it’s one of my favorite trees I’ve ever decorated!  Side note, I originally wanted to string the white garlands in between each color on the tree, but since I didn’t have enough of them, I strung them vertically.  Next year, I think I’m going to string them horizontally between each of the colors, though.  I think that’ll look really good! 

Thursday, November 14

Thursday was a much-needed gym day after taking several days off, and then I had to run several more errands, get my allergy shot, and visit the doctor.  Olivia had ballet after school and then we headed straight home so I could cook while the kids did their homework.  It was a busy day and I was exhausted by the end of dinner clean-up. 

Thursday evening we were able to finish The Little Mermaid, and with all that Disney talk, we also went ahead and signed up for a year of Disney+!  EEK!  Naturally we had to log in immediately and check it out!  So much goodness on there, y’all!

Before bed, I was tidying the kitchen and I came across this little animal that the kids had made out of leaves and twigs that they’d found in the back yard.  I told them it was time to throw it out since it was obviously something we couldn’t save without making a mess, so they asked me to snap a picture of it before it was tossed.  I thought it was just so creative.  They did it all by themselves here at home one afternoon last week.

Friday, November 15

Friday was the first day all week that I had no appointments, no meetings, no laundry to do, and no errands to run so I had the entire seven hours free while the kids were at school.  I used my time verrrry wisely, working ahead on blog posts, paying bills, filing paperwork that had been piling up, tackling tiny annoying non-important tasks that had been adding up, going over my Christmas list to see what all was needed, getting organized for the weeks to come, and purchasing lots of Christmas gifts online.  It was the best productive day and I feel like I’m so much more organized for the week ahead because of it. 

It also happened to be a very cold and rainy day, so it was nice to stay holed up in my office with the Christmas lights on, Christmas music on the radio, and a cup of hot cinnamon tea.  Such a cozy day!

That afternoon after I picked the kids up from school we made a quick stop at Hobby Lobby for one more item for our mantle, and then we headed home.  The kids played while I tweaked the mantle decorations and I finally got them just right.  It’s by far my favorite mantle yet.  It’s so magical this year!

B brought home Carabba’s take-out for dinner and we opened a bottle of wine.  After dinner we all got in our PJs, popped some popcorn and added some peppermint marshmallows to it, and we all snuggled under a blanket by the fire while we watched the new Christmas movie, Noelle, on Disney+.  It was so cute, y’all!  Kind of like a female version of Elf.  Not quite as good as Elf, but definitely worth watching. 

Saturday, November 16

Saturday we had zero on the calendar other than to watch the Georgia vs. Auburn game at 3:30, so I spent the day in my PJs watching football and decorating the whole house for Christmas.  The kids and I had already put up the trees in their rooms as well as the tree in my master bedroom, but we still had the entire downstairs to do, so it was out with all of the boxes!  I worked hard all day and got everything decorated.  The only thing left to do is to buy and put up our real tree in the living room and put up our outdoor decorations.  We always do all of that the Friday after Thanksgiving, so we still have some time. 

We watched the game from our couch and it went well until the fourth quarter.  I was hoping for a shut-out as the score was 21-0 (Georgia) late in the game, but then Auburn almost closed the gap 21-14 with a few minutes to spare.  B was on the edge of his seat and I was so nervous I literally couldn’t watch, so I spent the rest of the game stress-decorating while he told me what was happening.  Literally could not watch, y’all.  Lol.  Fortunately we were able to stop them and we won it 21-14.  It’s always so close when we play them and my heart just can’t take it anymore.  Haha.

After the game, we scooped the kids up in their PJs and headed to my parents house for a little bit to visit because my brother, sister-in-law, and niece and nephew were in town.  They had all gone to dinner, but we weren’t about to leave that game, so meeting up afterward worked out perfectly. 

Sunday, November 17

Sunday morning we were up before the sun to head to 8 AM mass and then we stopped and grabbed some donuts for breakfast on the way home.  After breakfast, the kids got all cozy on the couch with Disney+ and I got all cozy at the kitchen table with my planner to get organized for the week ahead.

We went to my MIL and step-FIL’s for lunch and they made one of the best chicken recipes I’ve ever had.  It was so full of flavor and the taste was so unique.  I got the recipe from my mother-in-law to try at home, and if I can get it to taste as good as she did I’ll have to put it on the blog for y’all. 

After lunch the kids played outside for a good long time.  Jacob and both of my nephews all play baseball, so they all love to go out back and hit and play catch with Poppie (my step-FIL).  Olivia usually plays with them, but Sunday my mother-in-law pulled out the bubble machine so she was perfectly happy chasing and popping all of the bubbles.  The weather was perfect on Sunday so we all got lots of fresh air. 

After we left their house, we had to make a quick stop at Walmart in search of rain gear for the kids.  We’re taking them to Athens this coming weekend again for the Texas A&M game, but unfortunately it’s supposed to rain.  Neither of them had any rain gear that fits, so we bought rain boots and rain jackets for both of them.  Even with all of the rain gear I’m not sure how they’ll handle watching a football game in the cold rain, so we’re keeping all of our fingers and toes crossed for a miraculously dry day on Saturday. 

Sunday afternoon the kids had some reading and studying to do, and then we all met my parents, brother, uncle, and his girlfriend for dinner at Cracker Barrel.  We love breakfast for dinner and theirs is always the best even though the service is sometimes slow.

Happy Tuesday to one and all… only four more days until Thanksgiving Break!  Woo hoo!