Wednesday, January 18, 2017


I hope everyone's 2017 is off to a great start. I always love a fresh start but making resolutions has never been my thing because I know myself well enough that I won't stick to them. Diet fads. Workout more. Turn off phone early. Go to bed early. Blah...blah...blah. Who wants to do those things? So my approach to the New Year is everything in moderation. I made a list of things I'd like to improve this year in my business and personal life and now I want to prioritize and start implementing them slowly so I'm not overwhelmed or else it won't happen at all. I set my standards high in my own head and tend to get myself down or not get it done because it's not done perfectly and that's something I really want to work on. It's hard not to when you're constantly looking at these perfect social media photos but we have to remind ourselves this isn't reality. It's still life set in a perfectly staged, lighted and edited photo. Behind the scenes is the same chaos we're all living in. So make this the year of doing what makes you happy and going a little easier on ourselves.  

Resolutions that actually make you happy

Spend more time with girlfriends

It's amazing how much just a quick walk or a cup of coffee with a friend can change your mood. We're all busy running around and taking the time to catch up with girlfriends is good for us. 

Workout only because you want to

We all know that working out more is better for us but the thought of it is sometimes daunting and doesn't make it as enjoyable but when you're done you're so glad you did it. So remember that feeling. Coordinate a barre class with friends to make it even more enjoyable. You can commiserate and laugh over how you used to be able to touch your toes. 

Delegate the things you dread doing

I'm not one to ask for help. In fact I'm very uncomfortable asking for help. I'm not consistent with a cleaning lady and feel guilty having one but when it's done it feels like a weight is lifted off my shoulders. It leaves more time for me to do other things and to me this is worth it. My other helper I've enlisted is Amazon. Amazon Fresh for groceries, if you have it in your area I highly recommend. I set up auto ship on items we use regularly like coffee, paper towels, dog food, etc. I recently read an article about invisible workload on mothers and autoship can help take one less thing off your to do list. Basically anything I can order online I do. Keeping UPS in business! 

Learn to say NO

This one took me awhile. But as moms we think we can do it all especially with the pressure of the outside world thinking that every mother out there is doing it all. Truth.....they're not. The kids bake sales, basketball practices, volunteering for events and social activities there's a lot going on. If helping with the kids bake sale makes you happy then go ahead and make that a priority but if it causes stress and is one more thing to add to your to do list just say no. There are other ways you can participate in your child's class and ask them what they would like to have you do more of. If you know they're looking forward to reading to their class you'll look forward to it more to and it won't feel like a chore. Leave time to do the things that make you happy. 

Pamper yourself

I was having a conversation the other week with a couple friends about how we just don't take the time to do the things we used to enjoy like getting a manicure or a facial without feeling guilty. Believe me I'm with you. I haven't had my hair blow dried after having it colored for about 6 months because I'm always rushing to get the kids off the bus or something else. But sometimes it's worth paying a sitter and actually taking the time to enjoy it. We all know what makes us more relaxed and a better person so try and let go of the guilt and take the time to pamper yourself. I have to work on this one. 

Have more impromptu get togethers

These are the best! Keep the wine stocked and don't stress about a messy house or no food. We all have messy houses and there is a pizza delivery guy!

Simplify and get organized

These things keep me happy. Some people are ok with chaos and I really really wish I was and I've gotten better over the years but I realize I'm a happier person when I know my ducks are in a row. Not knowing where something is or missing an appointment sends me into a panic attack so this was a big one I worked on last year. I found a planner system that worked for me and worked on simplifying our home. I'm still working on it but have made a lot of progress. 

Some of my favorite things that helped me stay organized in 2016

1. Day Designer Planner-I use a calendar app and I'm still a paper girl too. I like the layout of the Day Designer planners. They have a to do list, notes, water tracker and more on each day.

2. Amazon Fresh-If you have this in your area I can't recommend it enough. I get asked about how fresh the produce is and everything I've ordered has lasted longer then the regular grocery store. This saves me so much time and money because I'm not buying random items. It's delivered quickly and you don't even need to be home!

3. You've heard me mention May Designs notebooks before but I love these and carry them around with me to jot notes down/sketch layouts, etc. They're small so they're easy to throw in my bag.

4.  This digital calendar has been great for me. You have to find what works for you and if you find you're not using it then move on and find something that does work for you. I like this calendar app because I can see a month in advance, I can add tasks and they transfer to the next day if it's not completed and it syncs with your other calendars and events on facebook.

5. I read this book the beginning of last year. I was hesitant pulling everything out all at once for fear that I wouldn't be able to finish it. I'm still in the process but it's actually worked for me and has helped to create a home for the things in our home. Clothing was the easiest so I would start there and then move in the order she suggests. There are great print outs on Pinterest to help you stay on track as well. 

Monday, December 12, 2016


I actually don't really NEED anything this Christmas but if I was to create a wish list these are the items I would add to it. 

1. CLUSE WATCH: I love the simplicity of this classic watch

2. MARBLE MAC BOOK SKIN: because why not cover everything in marble?

3. SOREL BOOTS: These are my absolute favorite winter boots and I basically live in them for majority of the winter. They've done their time though (6 years) and I'm probably due for another pair. 

4. MAKE UP BRUSH: I was in anthro the other night and could not stop touching this makeup brush. The softest I've ever felt!! Has anyone tried their make up line?

5. SKI BOOT WARMERS: since we're going to be spending a lot of time on the ski slopes this year these would come in handy. My feet are always cold! Just wish they weren't so expensive. 

6. CHLOE BAG: I need another bag like I need a whole in the head but this is one I keep loving every single time I see it. I love the gray and green one. 

7. MIRRORLESS CAMERA: I've been saying all year the only thing I want for Christmas is a new lens for my DSLR camera and then these mirror less cameras changed my mind (I think). I love the  pictures from my DSLR camera but it's so heavy and bulky to carry around. I have the iphone 7 and it takes amazing pictures so I thought about just asking for the Ollo clip for it but I wasn't sure how much better the pictures would be. I think this sort of serves the purpose of everything I'm looking for. But this may be my #1 wish list item this year. 

8. ROBE: my older son stole my really soft robe and with living in a house with all boys I NEED a robe.

9. CANDLEFISH CANDLE: I'm a bit of a candle hoarder but love this scent 

10. IN THE COMPANY OF WOMEN: women rock! I've been wanting to read this book and the new DOMINO BOOK

11.WORKOUT PANTS: when I was browsing the new balance catalog these glam workout pants caught my eye

12. NEW BALANCE SNEAKERS: I love my current sneakers but they're thin and cold in the winter time and these would make a great replacement and would look cute with jeans too. 

Saturday, December 10, 2016


I've always loved little knick knacks and cute packaged things so I'm always on the hunt for creative stocking stuffers. I've included ideas for her, him and the kids and some more ideas below to help you out this year. 

1. Anthropologie gift card: because I want to buy everything there 

2. Met-sea hand and foot scrub: I saw these little glass jars with a wooden spoon attached the other day and they would make the cutest stocking stuffer. 

3. Pinch Provisions: Brunch so hard micro mini kit includes, stain remover, breath drops, dental floss, hand cleaning towelette, meal decision coin (they have a hangover one and a coffee one too) 

4. Sugarfina gummy bears: Infused with french champagne....yes please!! 

5. Tocca perfume sampler: these little roll one are great to throw in your bag. They sell them individually too. I love the Stella scent! (Hint hint honey) 

6. Carefree Organics lip balm: one of my gf's recently sent me these lip balms to include in chemo care packs we made and they smelled amazing!! They were gifts so I couldn't use them but I need to order some of these stat!! 

7. Sephora face masks: When I actually was ale the time to do a face mask these are some of my favorite face masks. They're under $10 so pamper her with a couple different ones. 

8. Makeup eraser: A reusable, ultra soft makeup remover cloth that erases makeup with only warm water.

9. India Hicks Tassel: I have a couple of these and love them. Use as a key chain or attach to a handbag. This gold color is part of their holiday collection.  

10. Cookie cutter candle: My favorite candles are from anthropologie and this one is super cute because the top is a cookie cutter. 2 in 1 stocking stuffer! 

11. Gap tech gloves: what good are gloves if you have to take off to use your phone? Give her a pair she can keep on and stay warm. 

12. Ornament: add a finishing touch to her stocking with a hand lettered ornament 

1. WOODCUT MEMORY GAME:  Based on the works of artist Bryan Nash Gillthis keepsake memory game includes paired prints of arboreal rings to challenge your mind and beautify your table

2. SUNDAY SOCKS: Funny socks for football watching. Lots of other funny designs on their site

3. NFL BEANIE: give him his favorite 2016 NFL hat

4. APPLE WATCH BAND: If he already owns an apple watch, he can switch out his watch band for the bowl games 

5. HINGED EAR BUD CASEThis compact hinged case will solve all your ear bud transport problems. Made of a durable and flexible vegan material with a soft linen lining, it opens easily with a simple squeeze and will prevent that frustrating ear bud cord tangle.

6. WIRELESS BEATS: A pricier stocking stuffer but these are husband approved! 

7. YOU ARE A BADASS BOOK: Inspirational reading 

8. WHISKEY WEDGEThis artfully shaped ice mold creates a custom wedge-shaped ice cube to perfectly chill but not water down your favorite spirits. Designed to melt much slower than smaller traditional ice cubes, Whiskey Wedge helps retain your drink's full flavor.

9. CRAB MULTI TOOL:Comes with a mini scissor, bottle opener, 3/16 flat head screwdriver, can opener, mini knife, and rope saw

10. PROSPECTOR CO COMPRESSED TOWELS:These travel-friendly cotton "pills" decompress with water and expand to a dish-towel-size cloth for convenient grooming when you don't have the conveniences of home. Perfect for long flights, long days at work or days when you just need a breather.

11. KRAVE BEEF JERKY: Skip the candy and go for the beef jerky this year

1. MAGICAL BUTTERFLIES: wind them up and watch them fly 

2. CROCODILE GAME: pull the tooth out that's bothering him without him chomping down on your hand 

3. PIRATES GOLD: Ahoy love pirates gold. My son still has some hidden in his nightstand. 

4. HEADLAMP: perfect for building forts and hiding in them

5. REVERSIBLE MAGNETIC TIMER: this is really cool. I may need one of these for my own desk. 

6. ELLA + MILA NAIL POLISH: Vegan nail polish so safe for your little girls who love to paint their nails. I wear barely pink all the time! 

7. FART IN A CAN: What is it about boys and farts? If anyone is in a bad mood just say the word "FART" and they instantly laugh. My boys would get a kick out of this stocking stuffer. Press button on horn to really rip one! Makes 6 classic fart sounds; Silent But Deadly, Loud & Proud, The Big Boy, The Squeaker, Booty Bomb, and Uh Oh! One Too Far

8. WET BRUSH: the best detangling hair brush out there. TRUST ME! I used to sit and cry when my mom tried to untangle my hair. I so wish these existed back then. The mini ones are cute for stocking stuffers. 

9. SPRINKLES MEDLEY: The prettiest sprinkles I ever did see. 

10. SUPER DOOPER REINDEER POOPER: speaking of potty talk this looks gross but I know the kids will think it's the funniest thing ever. I grabbed these are Michael's for cheaper btw 

11. COLORED PENCILS: cute little case of colored pencils for your budding artist

12. EMOJI KEY CHAIN: the wink and the happy tears are my favorite! 

13. HAIR WRAPS: I don't have girls but apparently these are a big hit right now. I know I used to beg my parents to do this when we'd go on vacation. 

14. FINGER PAINT PAINTING KIT: my brother got the kids these one year for Christmas and we had so much fun with them. Maybe I had a little more fun then they did.  

Monday, December 5, 2016


I sincerely apologize for the delay with the gift guides.  I was having technical difficulties with the blog and lost my gift guide for her/stocking stuffers and gifts under $25 and it disappeared from the blog....ahhh! I had to redo all of them so I hope I didn't forget anything good. Thankful for a brother who's an IT whiz and was able to get the new blog domain worked out for me. 

The gift guide for her is my favorite to put together. Although I usually have too many ideas! Picking my favorites is tough so I included additional favorites below. What are some items on your wish list this year?

These Baublebar earrings came the other day and I paired them with a red dress recently on our trip to Miami and they're so fun. I can't wait to wear them for the holidays too. They're not super heavy either. 25% off with code GIFT25

I have an attraction so faux fur things this time of year. This might be a gift for yourself. It's so incredibly soft and can be worn 3 ways. The fur side, flip it around to the black sweater side or wear as a cape. Perfect for holiday parties!

This Stella & Dot bag has been my everyday bag this season. I absolutely love it and get lots of compliments. It can be worn as a shoulder or cross body. Lots of great interior pockets and a cute tassel closure. You can also get this necklace for only $5.99 with a purchase 

Metallic earbuds. Cute stocking stuffer! 

We just got back from a trip to Miami and stayed at the Edition hotel which is beautiful! Totally up my alley. Lots of white, marble and natural wood tones and these rose gold pineapples! They have shakers, tumblers and even shot glasses. Cute addition to the bar cart. 

Kate Spade and Tory Burch recently came out with new fit trackers that don't look like fit trackers. I like this black and white striped kate spade one for a more casual look. 

Speaking of tech accessories that don't look too techie I love these Mark & Graham iphone charging bracelets that I spotted a couple months ago. They can be monogrammed too! 

I saw someone wearing one of these a couple months ago and thought it was such a great idea for when you're running around with your kids and want to be able to snap all those precious moments or if you're out for a night and don't feel like dealing with holding a clutch and your phone, etc. There are a lot of cute options for phone cross body holders but this one has an opening for the camera so you just lift it up snap it and that's it! 

Barefoot dreams blankets are sooooo soft! Perfect to cuddle up with this winter. P.S. they make robes too!

Looking for diamonds for the lucky lady but don't want to break the bank? These adorable initial necklaces by Covet come in gold, silver and black diamonds too. They also have other designs if you don't want to do an initial. 

Have someone to shop for that is a Jo Malone lover? Lots of greats scents in this gift set. They also have a great candle set I have in the link below. 

For the yoga lover this is fun. Although I think about pizza the whole time, hee. 

J.Crew striped thermal pajamas. Leggings are the best thing to sleep in because they don't move. You could also use these under your ski gear too! I like these striped ones from Boden too
This glass tea pot would make a great gift packaged up with some loose tea and a mug!

I love these Tassle slippers from One Kings Lane and these slippers are also super cute for the holidays and on sale for under $15

Eberjey makes the most beautiful stuff and this robe looks soooo comfy!

Pair this glass tea pot with some loose leaf tea from Davids Tea for the tea lover. 

Anti bed creases, anti bed head and anti aging pillow case made of silk...yes, please! 

I've seen these Sonia Kashuk make up brushes in Target and wanted to add them to my collection. So cute! 

Since I could make the gift guide for her with about 100 items I've included some more ideas here:

Friday, November 25, 2016


It's the biggest shopping day of the year.....wooohoooo! Soooooo many good deals going on right now. Anyone out shopping today?

To say I had fun doing this girls gift guide would be an understatement. I don't have any girls but I have nieces and friends with girls. So I asked them what is on their wish list and maybe I added a couple that I would pick out when I was a tween. I included a combination of gifts for tweens and younger girls. 

1. Emoji Pillows 😍😜😎😂

2. Lululemon headbands. If you've seen a girl walking around lately you know these are a huge hit! Would make a great stocking stuffer too!

3. My kids love their lava lamps and this one is super fun because you can write on it

4. Did anyone else love these jewelry kits when they were younger? This Charmazing one looks fun because they look similar to the alex and ani bracelets that girls love and you can order different style kits as well. 

5. LUSH cosmetics bath bombs. Will be adding some of these to my wish list too. They look like candy and smell amazing! 

6. Patagonia coats was another item big on girls wish lists this year. I love their sweater coats because they're lightweight and warm. 

7. Headphones that you can design yourself!

8. This is a fun version of Amazons Alexa. Comes in 3 different patterns. I still don't get how this is any different then siri but it seems to be a big gift this year. If my kids had one of these we'd probably have the pizza delivery guy here every day. 

9. Who remembers puffy paint? I was seriously obsessed. So obsessed I had a puffy paint your tshirt birthday party and I still remember it. Well this is the modern puffy paint. Gel a Peel and create your own jewelry with it. 

10. Just Dance for Wii or Xbox. Have you played this yet? Sooo fun! 

11. Gift cards can be impersonal but it's what tweens love. Nordstrom, Bath & Body Works, Ivivva, Lululemon were all top on wish lists. 

12. Who doesn't love a Barbie dream house. I sorta get really sad when I know that I'll never buy one of these. 

13. I love flamingos and this stuffed flamingo is so darling 30% off with code LETSGO

14. Seriously how insanely cute is this play kitchen? Gone are the days of the large ugly plastic ones taking up your space when you can have one that looks nicer then your own kitchen. By the way little boys love these too no matter what your husband will tell you. It's the closest thing to a girly toy us boy moms will get away with. 20% off with code OHWHATFUN

15. American girl dolls. My favorite was Samantha! This is another gift I wish I could buy and after visiting our American Girl doll store for a gift, I'm wanting to borrow someones little girl for the day just so we can go visit and go to the cafe and do whatever else you go at the American Girl Doll store. 

16. This Cat & Jack unicorn sweatshirt is the cutest

17. Create your own fairy garden. These are so stinkin cute! 

18. Num Nums Lip Gloss kit truck because what girl doesn't love lip gloss?

A couple more gift wishes and ideas for girls: 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


I decided to split up the boys and girls gift guides because there was just too many great gift ideas that I thought this would make it easier for everyone to read. So if you have boys to shop for here are some things my boys are asking for, things they've gotten in the past and still love or things that just look pretty cool.

I've sourced majority of these toys from Target because they are having 20% off all toys right now with code TOYS. Click on link in description in each item to see online.

1. If you live in a snowy part of the country these LLBean snow tubes are so durable and I'm always looking for reasons to get the boys out of the house in the winter time. (Get 20% off with code THANKS20)

2. I took my kids to Barnes and Nobles and looked for reactions to different toys and this one was thought to be "pretty cool" a 3D marker. It reminds me of the wicky sticks you get in some restaurants but this is way more fancier. It melts the sticks so you can create 3D projects.

3. Table top air hockey table. I like that this can be stored under the couch when not in use and doesn't take up a ton of space and the kids love playing it.

4. My son got this BB8 last year and it's the coolest little robot. Now they have a watch that pairs with it and you can use Jedi forces to get the BB8 to follow you. All the items can be purchased separately or they also have a bundle with the watch this year.

5. A friend told me about these blankie tails last year and my kids love them. They actually walk around in them too which looks pretty funny but they're soft, they wash well and have held up well. You can even have their name monogrammed on them.

6.  Anki Overdrive has been the most used gift in our household. Santa got it for our 7 year old last year and he has traveled everywhere with this Anki Overdrive Track set. You can buy a starter kit which comes with 2 cars (they're not cheap) then the boys wach purchased a car with gift cards they got so we could have 4 cars. The only negative is the kids need to use a phone or ipad as the remotes but because they do that, there is an app that tracks their racing stats, etc. The cars also aren't cheap but have been used heavily for a year and we haven't had any issues. The coolest things about it are that the cars actually stay on the track and if they fly off they make their way back to the track and the tracks are bendable and magnetic so they stay together. I saw this in a lot of black friday ads so you can score a better deal on it then but highly recommend this one!

7. Since we live on a hill my kids would probably kill themselves on a ripstik but a great teenager gift or if you don't live on a hill. They look fun and I would have probably loved one as a kid myself.

8. Build your own video games with Bloxels! The innovative video game creation platform makes concepting and execution easy. Watch your game world come to life as you create and animate play spaces, characters and objects because you are the artist, game designer, storyteller, programmer, publisher AND player! 

9. My boys love these Wubbles and at first I thought they were odd but the other night my son was using his as a bean bag chair. I thought for sure it was going to pop but it didn't. They're inexpensive too!

10. If you haven't seen the game Speak Out yet I highly suggest you look for it on YouTube. I almost pee'd my pants watching these videos. There are 2 different age groups you can buy with this game.

11. Any type of LEGOS will do with boys!

12. This is a great scooter for those not ready for the razor scooter. It has a back kick break and 3 wheels instead of 2. My 7 year old loves his!

13. The OSMO great educational gift. They've added some new sets to it this year like this cool drawing/projector one. There is also a new coding kit as well. Kids have fun while learning. IPad required. (This never goes on sale and it's on sale on their website right now)

14. This is all my 7 year old wants this year. Also made my Anki is Cozmo. There are a lot of robots out there this year. Another one that also looks cool is Dash. It's amazing what these little things can do but you can program them to do certain things, they have voice recognition and my kids told me that this one is cautious around pets. I'm sure the dog will love it!

15. We got these last year when they came out and I have to say these little StikBot's (20% off with code TOYS) are sort of addicting. They know come in a set with a green screen so you can create any type of background you'd like. They're little guys with suction cups on their hands and feet and you position them and take pictures and create a little video with them. It's pretty fun!

16. Any NERF gun will do but this is the modulus Nerf Gun. You can reconfigure it and attach different pieces to it. The additional pieces are sold separately and this gun is pretty big but the kids don't seem to mind.

Shop more gift ideas for boys here:

I'm not sure I think this is a good idea but kids would probably love this Fabriq version of Amazons Alexa. Just tap the mic button and ask Alexa to order a pizza, set a timer, use for music and more. If my kids had this the pizza delivery guy would be at our house everyday but I think it's a cool gift for a college aged student.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


Whether it's your husband, dad, brother, uncle, boyfriend or whatever male you have to buy one thing is for certain, they're not easy to shop for. I asked Rob for some ideas and he looked at me and was like I have no clue. Thanks honey, big help! (was hoping to get a couple ideas myself) So I was left on my own to figure it out. At least my girlfriends were more help and had a couple good ideas of gifts their hubbies liked. This year there are a lot of tech gifts but that's what guys seem to like.

1. This Box Fox is 4 gifts in one. An inspirational book, leather tray, x-long phone charger and mens lip balm. 

2. For the adventurous one. They've updated the GoPro with a new version that allows you to see your videos on the screen instead of the app. 

3. I've raved about Sorel boots before but they are hands down the warmest boots I've ever owned. My feet are always cold but not in these and I love the color combo of these for him. 

4. He'll always have cold water on hand with this stylish Swell bottle 

5. The new iphone 7's take such amazing pictures that I can only imagine adding an Ollo lens would make them even better. Great for the photographer who doesn't want to carry around a larger camera all the time. It's a wide angled, fish eye and macro lens. 

6. This fleece caught my eye in the store. It not only looks good, it's super cozy too! 30% off right now with code FESTIVE

7, Remember when we were younger and our dads had to carry around the VCR to capture home videos and then to be able to watch them you had to plug in the VCR with the VHS tape? Well fortunately for Dad's these days technology has come a long way. Now you can just pop it into this little projector and enjoy a family movie night. 

8. A friend told me about this and I know some guys that would really like this. A ManCan-mini keg for his fridge. Have it filled at your local brewery and it keeps it carbonated until the very last drop. You can even personalize it. 

9. Too bad Thanksgiving isn't after Christmas because this bluetooth thermometer would make a great gift for my husband when he's deep frying the turkey. They can monitor their meat via an app while enjoying a beer from their Man Can. 

10. A shave kit delivered to his door every 3 months

11. I thought this NES Classic Edition would make a great gift until I learned that Paper Boy and Duck Hunt aren't included. Really Nintendo??? Guess it doesn't matter much anyway because they're hard to get your hands on one right now. I heard that Nintendo is trying to build up the hype and so they are only releasing so many a day and that you'll be able to get it in time for Christmas. So they say. 

12. If you really really want to impress him this year, this Sonos system is amazing. You're able to set up multiple speakers and play different songs in each room. The sound is amazing too. I don't know all the little technical details so it's probably best to go to Best Buy and have them explain what you'd need. 

13. He can get his electronics shit under control with this ipad, phone and watch charging stand. There is nothing that drives me more insane then the cords and chargers everywhere but yet one always seems to be missing. 

14. For the traveler in your life Flight 001 makes great travel accessories including this mini bar kit

More gift ideas for him are included below: 

If you have any great gift ideas for him you'd love to share I'm all ears! 

design + development by kelly christine studio