Tuesday, November 24, 2015

{Toddler Tuesday} - Ellie's Christmas List 2015

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is this week and that we are less than 6 weeks away from Christmas!  

We already have several items for our Advent Calendar already purchased and scheduled, but now it's time to start thinking about presents, for the Babe specifically.

So for this week on Toddler Tuesday I am talking about some gift ideas for the Toddler in your life!!

Ellie's 3rd Christmas List

Ellie's 3rd Christmas List by lifeonthefarm on Polyvore

I have to admit that it was a little difficult coming up with items for Ellie's list because she already has so many toys...and she gets to play with a lot of other ones at the houses we work at.  I want to be practical with the items she will receive and that they will have longevity because I just don't want to have a lot of stuff.

Ellie has been really into what she wear lately so clothes are for sure on her list.  I am loving these pants, this top, and this top, and in an effort to have her be more girly I think this dress is adorable. But also adding in some fun accessories is always a good thing, so I am loving this style of necklace for her and maybe some bracelets too!

I am all about encouraging her imagination and this Little People cottage is perfect, combine that with her current obsession with neigh's and I think we have a winner winner chicken dinner.  Plus these toys are so cute and will fill her love of Disney quite nicely.

I am loving the Montessori inspired toys that have multiple uses.  Not only will Ellie get a better handle on her colors (because we all know she needs some help in that department) with THIS, but she will also get to work on sorting (a math skill) and fine motor skills with using the scoop to pick up the colors, not to mention some problem solving skills on figuring out how to actually accomplish that!!

It's never to early to start with number and letter recognition and these bath foam letters will help Ellie with that as well as work on her color recognition.  Additionally these puppies aren't only for use in the bathtub (Thanks Susie!!) and I can bring them to my nanny house give the littlest babe something to grab off the wall/window!!

What is on your toddler's list this year?

♥ Ashley

Ellie's 2nd Christmas List
Ellie's 1st Christmas List

Friday, November 13, 2015

Friday Five - A Stitch Fix Review #5

How is it Friday already?  And I just realized it's the 13th...you're welcome.  I have a good one for you today full of all sorts of fashion goodness...and not so much.

Well I got my fifth fix in the mail the other day...it came right around naptime so you know that's a good thing!  I was really looking forward to this fix since my last one was a total hit out of the park.  I wasn't disappointed with this one it just didn't quite capture my style as well.  

If you haven't heard of Stitch Fix before its a fashion subscription where you can schedule your fixes for as often as you want.  What you do is sign up (use this referral link) and fill our your style profile, write a note to your stylist and schedule your fix.  You will then be matched up with a stylist who will send you a fun little box of five items.  You do pay a $20 styling fee for each fix but they take that off if you choose to keep any items and if you keep all five you get a 25% discount on the whole thing!  What makes this so great is that you get to try on the clothes in the comfort of your own home and try it out with other items in your closet and see if you have anything similar already.  I really like it because I just don't feel like I really have the time to go shopping any more and lets be honest - I really don't like dressing rooms, you have to take your shoes off and I don't even want to know what kind of ickiness is on the floor... So getting items that are hand picked for me and sent to my door? Sign me up! Oh wait I already did, haha

For my 5th Fix, I decided to only ask for tops (since I finally got a pair of jeans that worked!) and all of their accessories have been misses, I don't want to waste an item on one. I was hoping to get some more fall to winter transitional pieces and some fun holiday festive looks.  So here we go!

The package at my door...ok I actually brought it inside since it was raining and put it on our awful 1989 carpet...you're welcome.

I always do the same thing with each of my fixes.  After opening I pull out the styling card and read my note from my stylist (I actually got the same one as last time!!) and then glanced at what was in my box.  I don't know why I always do this because I usually am not impressed with any of the items when shown on the card...and the same went with this one.  I wasn't a fan of the color of the red shirt, I have way too many cardi's, never imagined myself in a poncho (too many memories of the one from Mexico from 1993),  was unsure about another lace overlay but loved the green color, and then thought the dress was pretty daring - though it was floral so it got a bonus point.  

But like they say..."Don't judge a book by it's cover"..."Don't judge a fix by it's style card"

And then I thought I would throw this photo in...all the items folded up on the tissue (apparently it's an artsy type of photo...) I prefer the old layout I did.

Papermoon Lamont Lace Detail Blouse in Burgundy

I had a photographer this time (thanks Thomas!) and we switched to taking photo's in Ellie's room because she gets better lighting. I have to say that I just was not a fan of this top from the beginning. The cut is weird and I couldn't lift up my arms.  I am not sure if it was the weight of the tags or the lace detail itself but it made the back of the collar really heavy and the neckline kept creeping up.  While I like my tops to be fairly loose fitting this one felt like a tent...and the sleeves were not good at all.  They did have elastic around the wrist so they stayed up at my elbows but that still didn't make it better.

The length of the shirt was decent but when I raised my arms up it was just not good.  I wasn't a fan of the pattern or color of fabric. Also worth noting...it was a challenge to get off.

 Verdict: RETURNED

Skies are Blue Burton Lace Overlay Top in Dark Green

No.  I don't even know if I can talk about this one.  It does have two things going for it in theory...it's green and it has lace.  That is where it ends.  The fit is all wrong, hits at the worst part of my hips, the neckline is weird, and the sleeves are something that Anne would be all over ... back in 1908, not me.  And the elastic on the wrists was super tight it was uncomfortable when pushed up to my elbows.


Market & Spruce Denver Cable Knit Elbow Patch Cardigan in Brown

Another Market & Spruce item made it's way into my box, furthering my belief that they have a collaboration with SF.  I loved the detailing of the cable knit (I am actually really drawn to it) and I love the elbow patches and the fun leather buttons.  The yard was smooth and soft and a very comfortable sweater ... not too tight on the arms.  It was a good length and over all a pretty good fit.   (also I decided to change up my hair and put some makeup on because I was a little embarrassed of my appearance)

I love that the cable knit continued on the backside and y'all know I have a love affair with pockets.  The only problem is that I have a nearly identical cardigan in grey (see in item #4) that I got for a steal about 4 years ago at Zara.  I couldn't justify getting a second one, not to mention I have at least 15 cardi's already.

Verdict: RETURNED but major props to Erika for picking out an item I already own - she knows my style!

Skies are Blue Shenay Dress in Navy

I was unsure about a dress but then it was in my favorite floral and navy combination...so there's that. Oh and its called the "Shenay dress" which may or may not have been my alter ego name back in the day...(too much?)  I am so glad that this dress got sent to me because I love how they look on the models but would never actually try it on.  It's the perfect bit of modesty and if I was still teaching would be a perfect teacher dress.  The floral pattern is just right (although I would have been totally ok if it was a bit more busy...give me all the floral!)  The sleeves were great, the neckline awesome and the waist hit me in the best possible spot.  The length was attractive and I love the slight pleating of the skirt (brings me back to my old high school cheerleading days)

It would work perfectly with a cardigan...like the one they sent me...
...Or like the one I already own.  They are so similar aren't they I almost tricked your eyes into thinking it was the same cardi ;)
Oh and lets pretend I can do a fashion pose!
The only problem I have with this dress is that I already have a navy and floral dress, it's a little more risque but has a very similar look and fit.  But once again, major props Erika for knowing my style so well!

Verdict: RETURNED only because I already owned a dress similar.

Colourworks Gerda Lace Detail Pullover Poncho in Light Grey

I honestly thought I was going to hate this one.  I really don't need any more grey in my wardrobe but I'm a sucker for it and always have been.  But I couldn't have been any more wrong, when I put this baby on it was love.  It was so comfortable and roomy.  I actually liked that it didn't have long sleeves and the cowl neckline was just right.  I have a thing for lace and this has just the right touch.  I definitely need to wear something under it because it is a poncho and might be a little too revealing on the side slits.
It's just loose and flowy and I love the length.  Even though it has been completely confirmed that I will never be pregnant (except for IVF) or breastfeed this top would be perfect for both.  It is so forgiving and would be the perfect nursing cover.
I just couldn't get enough of it and had Thomas continue to take lots of photos...
and then to try it on with a long sleeve from my closet and I still love it.  I actually wore it around for most of the day and almost to my MOPs meeting that night...but I refrained, somehow.

Verdict: You guessed it KEPT

Have you tried Stitch Fix? Do it!!

♥ Ashley

Stitch Fix #1
Stitch Fix #2
Stitch Fix #3
Stitch Fix #4

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Thursday, November 12, 2015

Thursday Confessions

I always love reading these posts so I thought I would do one!

~ I wasn't going to go here...but I am.  I guess there is some big thing going around social media regarding the Starbucks Red Cups.  I have to admit that when I got my first red cup last week I didn't notice anything different about them - but apparently there is and I guess it's supposed to "mean" something.  I have been a self proclaimed "I don't care about the holiday cups at Starbucks" and honestly I don't...they don't signify anything for me and with the uprisal just makes me think it's ridiculous, the cups are red - get over it!

~ we got matching pajamas for Christmas and we may have already started wearing them...

~ we both had the day off yesterday and took advantage of it being super early in the 'season" and got Ellie's Santa pictures taken, we were first in line and I am so happy to cross that off our list.  

~ continuing with the Christmas theme we have purchased tickets to ride the Santa Train and the Nutcracker Ballet, I sent out my evites for my annual Ladies Christmas Tea, and we have been drinking Eggnog like its going out of style for over two weeks.

~ Ellie has started to say "Oh My Gosh" and I think it's twelve kinds of adorable (I know many may disagree but I don't care!)

~ I watched this video and I couldn't help but laugh

~ I get really irritated when semi-trucks drive in the fast lane (because they are usually going at least 5 under) but they also scare the hell out of me when driving that if I can I make sure that there is a lane between me and them when passing...then I realized the struggle I have with driving my car that it would be a nightmare if I ever tried to drive one of those!

~ I hate it when the diaper change stations are inside a bathroom stall...even more so when they open up over the toilet - an accident just waiting to happen. Or when there is no change table at all (I'm talking to you HomeGoods)

~ The struggle is real for us shorties, having to climb up on the counter to get a coffee to go mug on the top shelf is annoying, but not being able to reach the yogurt you want at the grocery store is embarrassing.

~ Our family pictures got rained out last weekend so now we need to find a new photographer and set up another time for them.  Hopefully that can happen sooner than later.

~ I love to laugh but not everyone gets my humor.

~ When my nose itches or is runny it takes every ounce of everything I have to not lose my cool, it's the most obnoxious thing and usually makes me want to rip all of my hair out because I am sure that is whats tickling it.

~ I used to have to read everything.  All of the blog posts on my feed (every word) and every page of the magazines I get.  It became such a time suck and didn't put all the value in my life, so now if there is an article in Martha Stewart that I am just not interested in...I skip it and I don't feel guilty.

~ When I first wake up in the morning I have to brush my teeth.  Morning mouth is the worst.

what do you confess?

♥ Ashley

Monday, November 9, 2015

Our weekend

Is it just me or do the evening seem to drag on for forever now with the time change? Ellie was acting a little cranky last night so I figured it was probably close to bedtime (which is 8:00) but it was only 6:45, so we busted out the fish I got from our IKEA run the other day and some playdoh...there is just something completely wrong about the sun setting at 4:45 in the afternoon.  Ellie is also super obsessed with coffee right now and will request a cup, so I just grab her teacup and fill it with some water - that seems to satisfy her just fine!  Also we have been talking about replacing another appliance in our home since everything is from 1989.  We were trying to decide between a new dryer or a fridge.  Well the decision was made for us when our dryer stopped working this week.  I did a quick search online and then made my way to our local Lowes, they had a brand new GE dryer for almost 50% off because they came out with a new model.  I am must be getting old because I am pretty excited for a new dryer - but we have to wait until the 15th for it to get installed.  I guess we will be doing a lot on line drying in the bathrooms until then!

I gave a sneak peek on Friday's post about some of our IKEA haul. 
Here is a refresher:

Not only will you notice that I got Ellie some of the play food (I think I really like it because you can throw it in the washing machine to clean it up!) but also some things for her room.   I have been having the most challenging time finding some curtains that match the design I have in my brain, well I picked up these curtains at IKEA despite Ellie saying "NO!" and turning her head away when I asked if she liked them (which seems to be the trend these days whenever I show her something girly...) but then once they were up in her room she came around and admits that she likes them, and I actually really like them (especially for $25 for the pair!).

Friday when I had an unexpected day off (#notcomplaining) I got to work in Ellie's room in the morning.  So here the curtains are hung up temporarily until I sew the blackout curtains on them and hang them properly by the grommets.  I am also thinking that I want to sew on some PomPom trim because I think it's so cute, I just have to decide if I'll do it the green or pink color...though I am leaning towards the green!  I love them so much and they have really lightened up her room considerably and brought in the touch of girly whimsy I was hoping for.  Not quite like the inspiration I had but definitely a perfect alternative!  Also I picked up the the TEJN faux sheepskin and she loves it so much and I love how it feels between my toes (I might need to pick up two more for our room...)

The room is definitely not complete, it's a work in progress but I love how each element is bringing my vision to reality!

I really had my A-game going on so Ellie got dressed up in her finest plaid and posed for this sweet little picture when we were heading out to library story time - I mean come on!  Also that sweater is one of a kind knit by my mom, I love having these little pieces of her.

I also "matched" with the babe for Flannel Friday and Plaid Friday. It's November now so I get to wear plaid and flannel, right?

On Saturday we had a lazy bit of a morning but then headed our to finalize and sign off on the measurements for our new floor...I am finally getting rid of the "vintage" 1989 builders wall to wall carpet in our house!  We don't have an install date set up yet but will hopefully get the floors in by the end of the month (if not sooner - fx).  I will go into more detail in another post.  After we went to the flooring store we stopped by Chick-Fil-A for lunch. It was our first time ever going to a CFA and I have to say that it was pretty good,  Ellie loved playing in the kids play area too, so that is another reason to return!

During Ellie's nap I got my chalkart on and did a new design on our pantry doors, I have to say that I am in love with it.  I do all my designs freehand while looking at an image for inspiration and I have to make sure to get a picture of it almost immediately before Ellie decides it's lacking her touch of art...

Then we invited Thomas' parents over for dinner and I made Roast Beef, Popovers, my new favorite side: Shredded Brussels Sprouts, and sauteed Mushrooms.  (recipe's coming) The meal did not disappoint and I am so glad we have some left overs because those brussels are so good and I cant wait to thin cut that meat for some sandwiches.

Sunday we got up early and went out for Donuts...Girlfriend loves herself some donuts and was pretty excited to eat hers once we returned home.  The donut shop we went to this time is only about 8 minutes away and I have a feeling we will be going there on the regular.  Ellie got a cake donut with vanilla frosting and sprinkles (she picked it out) and I got a glazed buttermilk bar - I haven't had one in years and it was so good.  Thomas had a chocolate bar.  Next time though I am trying their pumpkin pie donut...I hope it's as good and I think it will be.

The rest of the day we did some cleaning up around the house, got all the storage boxes I filled up from cleaning our Baby #2's room up in the attic, and did some major yard work.  I cleaned up about half of the vegetable garden and cut back all the peonies...our compost bin is now officially FULL!  Thomas did some organizing in the garage and put up an inflatable Minnie Mouse in the yard.  After Ellie's nap we went out on the farm and played on the swings, chased the goats and fed the animals.  

That's our weekend...how was yours?

♥ Ashley

Friday, November 6, 2015

That Friday Five Post

I can't believe that it is already Friday...I have a feeling that November is going to go by in the blink of an eye.  I am really hoping to get into a better bit of a routine and accomplish more at home when I am here, including some holiday decor.

Okay lets get into this post!


I took the kids out shopping on Tuesday to browse JoAnns for some fabric for Ellie's curtains in her room (because I still cannot decide).  Shopping with 3 under 3 is definitely a challenge but these kiddos made it easy.  And no I did not find any fabric that I fell in love with, so the search continues...


I made a stop at Starbucks because even though I am not one of those red cup people...I wanted a red cup.  I tried the Eggnog Latte and oh my word it's delicious.  We love our Eggnog on the farm (Ellie included) and Darigold is the preferred brand.  So I am pretty sure that the Eggnog Latte will be a staple order this holiday season!

oh and of course someone got a cakepop!


On Wednesday we were blessed with a beautiful day and I only had one of my families that day.  So Ellie, myself and my nanny kiddo headed back to the farm to have a farmdate.  The kids love going out to see the animals and Ellie is definitely a fan of the goats.  She loves to pet the goats and sometimes gets a little rough with them...but it never fails that when she trips or falls down and the goats smell her she cries like they're attacking her!! which of course they are not.


We went for donuts for breakfast this week because it was my One Year Anniversary working with one of my nanny families.  I love these kiddos so much and sometimes think of them as Ellie's siblings.  I can't believe how much all three of the kiddos have changed and grown over the past year and I just feel so blessed to be able to spend time with them.  Ellie was pretty excited about her doughnut as well!


I randomly got to have the day off yesterday.  Okay that is a bit of a lie, I got off at 10am.  So what do you do on a weekday when you don't have work? You go to IKEA of course.  Truth be told we tried to go a couple of weekends ago but couldn't even get in the parking lot, so we just went home.  I found out the reason why it was so busy - they tore down the parking garage and are building a whole NEW store right there! So the parking has been reduced by at least 85%.

We had a successful trip where I got some organization stuff for our pantry (because it's a MESS) and kitchen and then also got some great things for Ellie!  Girlfriend was an excellent shopper and only asked to get out of the cart one time and then quickly got over her tantrum and sat there the rest of the trip.  We were only there about an hour and she fell asleep while we were waiting in line for checkout - best toddler ever!!
We are in the market for a new kitchen faucet and I totally snapped a picture of this and this oh and this has been calling my name for years!

Happy Weekend!!

♥ Ashley

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Monday, November 2, 2015

Our Halloween

Just in case you haven't read enough Halloween Recaps...here's one more.

I will try to keep it short and sweet - who knows if that is even possible for me.  

But first let me share my Friday: long story short it was a shitty day (pun intended).  I thought I would be brave and wear this really nice mint sweatshirt I got at Eddie Bauer, I say brave because something seems to always go wrong when I wear it... The morning started out decent, I even got to work a little early! Then while I was braiding hair one of my nanny kids got into the mom's makeup, which then got on my sweatshirt sleeve when I attempted to clean up.  Not too long after there was a major diaper blowout that not only got all over the kid in question, but the pop up tent and tunnel they were playing in and all over the shirt of one of the other children...Once I got that all cleaned up, I ran a load of laundry and we moved into a different room.  A few hours later it was time to go for School Pickup and when we returned the dog had pooped in the hallway... Halloween, Full Moon, and Daylight Savings Time - everyone's dream week!

Onto Halloween!!

Thomas had a tennis tournament so it was just me and my best girl all day.  She got a Doc McStuffin's Doctor Bag for Halloween and pretty much spent the whole morning playing with it and singing all the Doc songs (or parts of) that she remembers...hearing your sweet little singing has got to be one of the best feelings in a Mama's heart!  While Ellie was napping I tackled the monster of laundry that has been accumulating and actually got it all put away (minus Ellie's clothes) since I folded and put away as I pulled it out of the dryer.  It was a feat let me tell you.

Thomas got home after Ellie woke up from her nap and we dressed her in her costume that she wore the past two years, I think I will have her wear it for a picture each year just to see how much she has grown!  

Then we quickly got her into her real costume and headed over to my Inlaws for Chili and trick or treating!

This was Ellie's first time trick or treating and she did awesome.  She was so patient at the first few houses but then after several that let her grab her own candy, she just started to help herself to fistfulls at all the rest of the houses...oops! Of course I apologized and tried to get her to let the homeowners do the candy and she grudgingly obliged.

Overall I would say we had a happy Halloween and girlfriend was out  by 8:45 and slept all the way until 6:45 the following morning.  

Sunday was just like any other Sunday, no problems with the daylight savings because, honestly I don't think it's that big of a deal nor do I say anything about it to Ellie and we just go about our normal routine and business.  That's just me though, I knew that when I signed up for this parenting thing that my sleep was going to be interrupted and you just have to deal with it.  Don't get me wrong, I like my sleep, but having a child is way more important to me. *rant over*

I spent the whole day in pajamas and finished up the laundry, deep cleaned half of the fridge, and made Pot Roast.  I would say it was a successful Sunday!

Happy Monday - if there is such a thing ;)

♥ Ashley

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