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5.23.2017

Creative Hot Dog Bar Toppings and Combos for your next Cookout


 
Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, I may receive a commission.  This does not cost you anything additional, and helps me to keep the rest of my content free, so thank you!

Three-day weekends plus spring / summer weather mean lots of time spent outdoors for cookouts, pool parties, and barbecues!  My brother-in-law wanted to have a fun cookout for his birthday, and as I'm always looking for ways to bring a bit more fabulousness to the everyday, I found myself trying to think of ways to spice up traditional cookout fare.  I decided to do a hot dog bar, where we could grill up a bunch of dogs and provide topping combination options for guests to build their dogs their way. 

Many of the hot dog toppings I settled on for the hot dog bar were from this 13 Creative Hot Dog Recipes slideshow from Real Simple, but I found a few others as well.  Read on to see all the recipes I used!

5.17.2017

Celebrating #FabForAll with a JustFab Convertible Swimsuit


Let's get real for a second.  I haven't prioritized my health and fitness the way I usually do.  Some stress at the end of last year, on top of the usual craziness of life, caused me to put self-care on the back-burner.  The result has been a slow and steady 10 pound gain.  Even though I have been spying lots of cute swimwear for summer 2017, I haven't been feeling as good about my body, and have been hesitant to buy any (let alone blog about them).  I am not as toned as I was when I modeled this swimwear two years ago, and was afraid to let the world see my imperfections. 

Then recently I saw this gorgeous convertible multi-way one-piece swimsuit from JustFab, and I had to have it.  The color was so pretty, the style was so fun, and I was just dying to get it.  I was quickly reminded about JustFab's #FabForAll campaign, which "celebrates love in all forms—loving your style, your life, and most importantly, yourself."  You know what?  I do love my style, and I do love my life.  I realized that I can also make the choice to love myself.  With this in mind, I decided to hold my head high, step away from the fear of exposing my flaws, and instead celebrate how fabulous this sexy suit makes me feel.  I may lose 5 or 10 pounds again someday, but I am OK with the fact that I will never have a thigh gap (I have accepted this as my genetics).  I am OK with the fact that I have stretch marks (this body has birthed two beautiful boys and has carried me all over the world).  These facts about my body should not prevent me from feeling fab, wearing an adorable swimsuit, or enjoying some time at the pool or beach.  Fabulous is not just about how something looks... it's a state of mind.  When you feel fabulous, you are fabulous. 

5.12.2017

Minecraft-Themed 5th Birthday Party (with Printables!)


Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, I may receive a commission.  This does not cost you anything additional, and helps me to keep the rest of my content free, so thank you!

Both of my boys have been Minecraft nuts since the first one of them got their first "big kid tablet" and could start playing Pocket Edition.  Then after Santa brought them a PS4 last Christmas along with the full version of the game, their love for Minecraft went next-level.  Between the time they spend in Creative or Survival, playing Story Mode, and watching their favorite YouTubers play (DanTDM, StampyCat, and Pat and Jen have practically become part of the family), this game has become a big part of the boys' lives.  Fortunately, it's a very creative and kid-friendly game, so we don't mind.  In fact, we love seeing the creative structures the boys construct, and watching them learn teamwork when they play in Survival together. 

I figured it was just a matter of time before one of them requested a Minecraft party.  Though my seven year-old has been playing longer, it was my youngest that requested a Minecraft birthday party first.  Here are the details from his Minecraft-themed 5th birthday party from a few weeks ago. 

5.09.2017

Travel Tuesday: Route and Recommendations for a Road Trip Through the U.S. Southwest

 
For spring break this year, the Fab Fam took a camping road trip across the Southwest (from Austin to Big Bend Ranch State Park in West Texas, Page, Arizona for Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend, and Zion and Arches National Parks in Utah).  You can click the links above for specific details on each destination, but today I am sharing our overall road trip route, itinerary, and recommendations for the whole trip.
 
Overall we covered five states, about 3,000 miles, and 48 hours of drive time over the course of nine days.  I am pleased to say that, once again, the whole family did great.  If you want to see my tried-and-true tips for surviving a long road trip with young children, click here.  We especially love breaking up the trip with unique roadside attractions, like the world's largest chile pepper, Billy the Kid's grave, and the like.  Most of these I found on Roadside America, which I highly recommend checking out before any road trip.

5.05.2017

DIY Kid's Camping and Outdoor Safety Necklace Craft

 
Our family camps and hikes on a regular basis, both for personal trips, and with our Camp Fire clubs.  Since it is important to teach kids some basic outdoor safety and survival skills, our Camp Fire club just had a lesson on this topic.  Part of the lesson was a craft to create their own outdoor safety necklace.
 
If you do this craft with your kids, I recommend also watching this YouTube video, which has some great, simple survival skills for children

5.03.2017

Outdoor Children's Activity: Go on a Nature Hunt!


Nature and outdoors are important in our family.  We get so much out of it, both mentally and physically.  This Nature Hunt kid's activity combines the fun of the outdoors with educational concepts of math ad geometry.  With our youngest starting kindergarten this year, this kind of prep is key. 

Go on a Nature Hunt!
Author: Education.com

With the weather warm and toasty, and you and your family heading outdoors, keep in mind that preparing your child for excellence in kindergarten math can be done anywhere, any time. The natural world is a string of math lessons, waiting to happen.

5.01.2017

Your Cinco Drink Recipe: Sparkling Rosé Sangria with Agave In The Raw®

 
Disclosure: I received Agave In The Raw® products for review purposes.  The opinions are completely my own based on my experience. 
 
What do you have planned for Cinco de Mayo?  I am feeling something fun, festive, and PINK!  Rainbow jewel tone, simple décor and fruity drinks are in order.
 
This is drink you need to make this Cinco.  The fun and fruity Sparkling Rosé Sangria – featuring a combination of blanco tequila, Agave In The Raw® and fresh fruit - is the perfect way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo!  Learn more about Agave In The Raw®, an organic sweetener, and read on for the recipe.