Archive for August 2017

Home Tour: In-Law Suite

August 29, 2017


A little backstory: I'm from California. When I decided to move to Michigan for graduate school my mom told me not to meet a guy, get married, and end up living in Michigan. And oops, that's exactly what I did. Thankfully, my mom moved to Michigan about a year before I had Hudson. I'm an only child and couldn't live without her close. And I'm lucky that she feels the same way about me. I grew up with my grandma living in the apartment above our garage, and loved having her right next door. So, when Jon and I decided to build our house, we asked my mom if she would want to join us and build her an in-law suite. And she said yes! Our original plan was to build her a separate little house behind ours...but due to strict laws in our desired area, we had to scrap that plan and build her house attached to ours. So we made it work. And today, I want to show you my mom's super cute space! She designed it all herself and we both really love how it turned out. It compliments our house but still has it's own style.


Her unit connects to our house via our shared laundry room. My mom has her own garage stall, garage entrance, and outdoor porch and entrance. I've encouraged my mom to lock the laundry room door so my kids can't just barge over...but so far she hasn't. This is the view of her side when you are standing in the laundry room. 


My mom graciously adopted our two cats, Henry and Sophie, when we moved. They lived with her while we were trying to sell our house and she loved it. And they love her. Jon is allergic to cats...and during that time he lost all of the immunity he had built up. So...my mom had our builder build a little litter box area built in to her house! Behind this little door is where the kitties do their business. 


Once you turn down the hall, you come to my mom's bathroom.


And across the from the bathroom is her bedroom. She has a giant closet...that for some reason I didn't take a photo of. 


Funny story, I remember when I was little I got in to a fight with my mom about blowing my nose. For some reason I just couldn't do it and we both were in tears. I ran outside, up the stairs, and right in to my grandma's house. After some cookies and encouragement, she had me blowing my nose in no time. I will never let my mom live that one down. So it's funny to me that now my kids do the exact same thing. As soon as I say no to Sadie, she's right at the laundry room door banging on it and crying "GIGI! GIGI!" she's learned Gigi has a hard time saying no to her sweet and sassy self. And Gigi also has fruit snacks. 


 But the best part, is her open kitchen.


The focal point of her kitchen is her amazing vintage O'Keefe and Merritt stove. It's a family heirloom and was in our California house while I was growing up. We all LOVE this stove and every single person who comes over just gushes over it. It's pretty awesome. 


I just love this stove.


Her kitchen and living space are connected, so it's just one giant room. 


So that's my mom's space! So happy to have her close to me!

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A Few of My Favorite Things.....

August 22, 2017

It's been forever since I've shared some of my favorite things with all of you! I've been sharing them over on my Instagram stories (@girlintheredshoes) lately and getting so many questions, so I thought I'd share them with you here!


First up, this dress. Stop what you are doing and buy one now! I shared about this dress on Friday and everyone who has it loves it! It's soft, and comfortable, and can be dressed up or down. I have it in green and want to wear it every day! I'm about to buy it in another color...or two. Also, it's good for nursing mamas....it's stretchy so you can just, you know, pop it out and feed that babe!


You all flipped out over this gold diffuser on my Instagram story. It was given to me, but I hunted it down for you. It's so cute and pretty in person. It's small (about the height of my iPhone 7plus)....so you can put it anywhere! Totally a favorite! 


Another Instagram story favorite, and possibly my favorite outfit ever is this adorable romper. I want it in every color and in every size. So. Dang. Cute. And Belle's crib sheet is from here


These trays are amazing. We use them every day for crafts, painting, eating. They contain the mess and are super easy to clean. And every time I mention them on IG someone wants the details. They are that good! Go get the 4 pack now and thank me later! Oh, and this is the washable paint we use! It's my favorite! 


You also all loved this kid's picnic table and umbrella. It's a favorite in our house! Be sure to watch this one because the price fluctuates...I paid half of what it's listed at now! And the kid's plates/bowls/cups can be found here. And Sadie's rainbow tank here (that she's wearing as a dress). 


These swing tanks are amazing. Another staple in my mom-wardrobe. 

I think that's it for now....if you know of something else I've mentioned that you want to know more about, please let me know!

*this post contains affiliate links

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It's All Part of the Job

August 17, 2017

This post is sponsored by Haven Life; all thoughts are my own.


This time last year I remember feeling overwhelmed. Sadie had just turned one year old, Hudson was 3 and a half, and I found out I was pregnant with baby #3. It was a lot to take in. Being a mom of three is a huge responsibility…and I didn’t know if I was ready. But you know what? You are NEVER ready. There is never a perfect time….but everything happens in it’s perfect time. And today? I wouldn’t change a thing. I LOVE having three kids. Yes, it’s crazy. And yes, I’m frequently overwhelmed. But man, it’s amazing.


I’m a stay at home mom…..but that doesn’t mean I don’t work. I work ALL DAY and often ALL NIGHT long taking care of my three sweet kids and our house. I’ve never worked so hard in my entire life. And I’ve never had a “job” that I love as much as I love being a mom. Some days you might find me crying in the bathroom while eating chocolate. And some days my face hurts from smiling so much. It’s just the nature of the job. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. So when you think about my contribution to our household as a stay at home mom, it’s huge. Not to brag or anything. But it’s true. It doesn’t matter if daddy is standing right there and is perfectly capable of helping a 2 year old put on her socks….it’s always “No, Mommy do it!” Mommy does it all. If there was a popularity contest in my house today I would win with an unanimous vote. I don’t think I’ve been able to say that with such certainty ever in my life until now.


And I love being everything for my kids. My kids are my whole world. And for now, I am their whole world too. It won’t last forever. But I want to savor it while I can. Now that I'm a mom, I'm all too aware of these precious gifts I have been given. I want to make sure they are taken care of.


As a mom, I can't help but worry. It’s part of my job. I knew going in to motherhood that I would worry about my children getting sick or injured. Or getting their feelings hurt. I knew I would worry if we are making the right choices when it comes to raising them to be kind and loving kids. But I didn't think about what might happen if I wasn’t around to be there for them. What would happen to my sweet babies if, heaven forbid, I died?


Do you have life insurance? It's scary to think about what might happen if you were no longer around. But it's even worse to think about what might happen if you don't have a backup plan. Life insurance is part of that backup plan.

I recently learned about a term life insurance policy that can be purchased entirely online, through Haven Life. They are a modern life insurance startup, backed by MassMutual, that has made buying affordable coverage easier than ever. I got an estimate for coverage pricing without speaking to a single soul.


Haven Life offers honest, easy, and affordable life insurance coverage for moms just like me. My contribution as a stay at home mom is huge in our family….and if something happened to me, I need to know that my family would be taken care of. Life insurance gives me that peace of mind and I sleep easier knowing my loved ones are protected…..that is, as long as my kids actually let me sleep! If you are interested in learning more about Haven Life, visit their website for more info and to get a quote!


Haven Term is a Term Life Insurance Policy (ICC15DTC) issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), Springfield, MA 01111 and offered exclusively through Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC









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7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

August 16, 2017


This post is sponsored by Autotrader; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

Since we have three kids under age five and a dog, we don't really travel that often. However, we do LOVE to spend the weekend up north at my mom's lake house. It's only about an hour drive for us, which is perfect! Our golden retriever, Wrigley, absolutely LOVES going to the lake house. He loves to lounge around outside on the deck, watch the ducks and boats that go by, and most importantly, go for a swim! As soon as we start packing up our car he knows we are going somewhere and he hopes he gets to go along too! We love our sweet guy and love taking him with us!

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

In the midst of packing up a family of five for a weekend getaway, it's easy to overlook Wrigley and his travel needs. So I rounded up a few simple tips for traveling with your pup!

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

1. Keep your pup secured while in the car. It's important for your dog's safety and for your kid's safety that your dog wears a dog seatbelt or is in a crate while you drive. If you were to get in a crash and your dog was not properly secured, he could be injured or he could potentially injure you or your children.  You can find all kinds of resources and products for car safety on Autotrader's website.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

2. No food before getting in the car. Dogs get car sick too! There is nothing worse than a sick dog on a road trip....well, except sick kids!  Both are zero fun. In order to avoid an upset tummy, I try and make sure Wrigley has a few hours between eating his meals and traveling in the car. Trust me on this one.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

3. Take breaks! Everyone, kids and dog included, need a break to stretch their legs, go to the bathroom, and get all the wiggles out! A one hour road trip is never just one hour with our family. Between potty breaks, cranky kids, or a hungry baby, we tend to stop a lot! Take advantage of those moments and let everyone out of the car for a few minutes to get all the crazy out!

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

4. Bring water! I don't recommend offering your dog snacks during a road trip, but make sure you carry a water bowl with you so that your pup can have a drink whenever you stop to rest. Dogs can get dehydrated when it's hot and they can't reach for a drink in the car like you can. Be sure to offer them lots of water when you stop, and as soon as you arrive at your destination.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

5. Remember to pack for your pup! Besides packing up their food for a vacation, remember to bring along a favorite blanket, bed, or toy. Wrigley has a favorite stuffed animal we always bring with us. We keep a dog bed and food bowls up at the lake house so that we don't have to remember to pack them every time.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

6. Make sure your dog's tags and micro-chip are up to date. We moved last year and I totally forgot to update Wrigley's information! So I need to listen to my own tips I guess! But I quickly solved that problem and ordered him new tags yesterday. If your pet gets lost while you travel it is essential that there is some way to identify him or her. So don't be like me and put it off...order those tags today!

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

7. Keep the routine. Just like kids, pets thrive on routine. Whenever we travel I try to keep Wrigley on his normal mealtime schedule. He's an older dog, so he spends a good part of his day taking naps. Thankfully he's been able to stretch out in our car and rest when he needs to! For more tips for traveling with your dog, visit Autotrader.

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

In honor of National Dog Day, Autotrader will be releasing a "New Dog Smell" car freshener! How funny is that?! For every order, Autotrader will give an in-kind donation to the Humane Society to help support adoption efforts at shelters all across the country. I love that, don't you? Also, if you are looking for a dog friendly car, Autotrader just created an awesome list of the best cars for dog lovers

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Bath Time Routine with Baby #3

August 10, 2017


Bedtime in our house is straight up bananas. Getting three kids bathed, in pajamas, and in their beds is a TON of work. My husband and I tag team during bed time and we are usually both exhausted by the time it’s over! Thankfully Belle is a pretty easy going gal…..and she LOVES bath and bedtime. I’ve gotten her routine down to a science…which probably means it’s about time for her to decide to switch things up on me. But for now, it works.


When Belle was first born I basically just held her or fed her all night long while Jon and my mom took care of the older kids. Or, when Hudson or Sadie demanded “MOMMY DO IT!” then one of them held her while I spent time with them. It was just a hot mess every night…but so much of those early weeks are, so it was expected! Belle was usually the last one to go to bed. But now that she’s 4 months old, girlfriend cannot hang past 6pm. She gets tired and fussy and just wants to sleep. Kind of like me, ha! So usually at 6pm I’ll give her a bath while Jon puts Hudson and Sadie in the shower. They laugh and make a mess for him while I spent some quality time with my sweet girl.


I mean….look at that face. Can you blame me for wanting to squeeze and hold her all the time?


I love using the Bumbo Elipad while I bathe her….it supports my knees while leaning over the tub. I didn’t have this with the first two kids and I really wish I did! It makes everything so much more enjoyable for me!

It also doubles as a toddler seat. Both of my big kids fight over it!


After bath time, I usually roll some lavender mixed with coconut oil on to the bottom of Belle’s feet and down her spine. She loves it! And it makes her smell so good and helps her calm down after the bath time excitement. I do this with all of the kids and they really like me rubbing their feet before bed!


Then I nurse and rock her to sleep. She’s my last baby, so I’m trying my hardest to soak up every second of her sweet little self. It’s true what they say…babies don’t keep.


We also started using another new product in Belle’s room….the Bumbo Changing Pad. It has a high side support and a safety belt to keep her nice and safe while I change her. It’s also super easy to clean, which I’m finding so convenient! And, like all Bumbo products, it’s ergonomically shaped so it’s comfortable for baby!


You can learn more about Bumbo and their line of products on their website, and can find the Eilpad and Changing Pad on Amazon! Use code BCARES20 for 20% off both products on Amazon, now through 8/31/17!

This post was sponsored by Bumbo, but all opinions are my own.


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