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ashley

Success with Brillia.

January 30, 2019

Our sweet little Karis Brynn will be starting Kindergarten in the fall and I really CANNOT believe it! I have so many emotions and I want her to do her very best! She sure loves to learn and is doing great in preschool, but her mind drifts to 100 different things and I’m a bit worried about her sitting at a desk for hours straight! Yikes! This is exactly why I have given Brillia a shot!

First things first. What is Brillia?

Brillia is a holistic approach that helps with, enhancing clarity, improving concentration, reducing anxiety, excitability, irritability, and hyperactivity. Brilla is safe, free of artificial colors and flavors, has NO harmful side effects, AND has showed us great results.

The Brillia program includes tips and advice on how to help you make healthy lifestyle changes that can also help your kiddos: Healthy eating habits, limited screen time, playing outside and using their imagination, getting a good night sleep and even a nap if they need it, and making sure their little bodies are relaxing! Make sure to check out Brillia’s five pillars for stronger focus! After all this TRY BRILLIA! We are loving it and seeing excellent results!

We have been practicing Brillia’s Five Pillars, and also using Brillia for about a month now! Karis is loving sitting down and working on her “homework”. She used to get sidetracked very easily, and I now see a difference in how long she is able to sit and learn a new letter of the alphabet! She is currently learning her ABCs and is having a great time. I can see that she is learning more clearly now and really grasping onto things like writing her name and a few smaller words. We will continue to use Brillia through the summer and right on into the fall in hopes that she will have a great transition into Kindergarten!

If you have a kiddo who has a hard time concentrating or gets anxious easily, I encourage you to give Brillia a shot!

XO Ashley McFarland

Travel

Solvang, CA with Kiddos!

January 21, 2019

Solvang, California here we come! We took a quick little road trip to Solvang last month for my 30th birthday.  I hadn’t been since I was a kid!  If you’ve never been, it is a very small (and VERY adorable) Danish town filled with darling shops, yummy restaurants, and THE best Danish pastries.  If you have the option, I would recommend visiting during Christmas time.  The streets are lined with Christmas lights and all the store fronts are filled with magical Christmas displays! 

What we did while we were there:

Santa Barbara Zoo:

On our way we stopped in Santa Barbara and spent the morning/afternoon at the Santa Barbara zoo.  Santa Barbara is about 45 minutes from Solvang and it was a good way for us to break up the drive for the kiddos!  This zoo only takes a few hours to see it all, it was very peaceful AND you can pay extra to feed the giraffes!  They also have a great play area for the kids.  Adding this to the trip was great since Solvang doesn’t have a TON to offer for kids.

Sunny Fields Park:

SUCH a fun park! We spent at least 2 hours here!  It’s not walking distance from the town, but it was a very quick (maybe 4 minute) drive.  We were having way too much fun to remember to take any photos (OOPS) but let all the photos on Yelp speak for themselves!

OstrichLand USA:

THIS place you guys! I could not stop laughing while we were there.  It costs $5 dollars to enter and an additional $1 to get a pan of food for the giant crazy birds.  There were SO many of them and as soon as you walk out with the food you see all their long necks start popping up and it is HILARIOUS! So worth it! They are pretty aggressive though, which scared Karis a bit.  There are also Emus that you are able to feed and they were gentle so Karis stuck with them! 

Quicksilver Ranch:

This is a small little ranch that raises and sells mini horses.  I can’t speak for myself on this one since it was raining when we wanted to head over and because of that a lot of the horses were put away.  We were able to see a few roaming around the grass though and that made Karis and Bexley happy enough.  On a day with better weather there are a lot more to see and the owner enjoys coming out and chatting with visitors as well.  This is NOT a all day activity, its just a few minutes of fun for younger aged kids.  We actually did it on our way out and it was a fun little way to end the trip.

Explore the Streets:

Walking the streets with a hot coco or coffee in hand was my favorite part of the trip!  The streets are just adorable, the storefronts were all decorated with Danish decor and A LOT to look at and explore.  There are a few fun toyshops that the kids loved (beware they are SUPER overpriced) but we were suckers anyways.  There are fountains, windmills and a grass area in the center of the city to run around and play.  We didn’t end up renting a Surrey because of the weather, but there was a rental shop we walked by and it seemed like a super fun option for a additional thing to do! 

Eat all the yummy treats:

There are so many bakeries and restaurants to try but these were our 3 favorites! Paula’s Pancake House was a cozy and delicious place to eat breakfast.  Just head to their website and drool for a second.  The next morning we checked out Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery.  Just vision EVERY Danish pastry you can dream of! Last, but NOT least.  You can’t leave Solvang without a Aebleskiver, we got ours at Solvang Restaurant (yes, the place is called Solvang Restaurant, very creative! haha) and they did not disappoint!

 

Where we stayed:

The Landsby, A gorgeous inn with a beautiful courtyard with cozy seating and fire pits. The location was perfect, right in the middle of town and walking distance to pretty much everything you need! The staff was kind and helpful, and you can’t beat the beautiful decor! Karis and Bexley’s highlight, the hot coco bar! We were worried about all 5 of us in ONE room but we survived! We got a room with 2 beds.  Bexley slept in a pack and play, Jovie slept with me in one bed and Karis slept with Eric in the other bed, and we survived! 

Check out our Vlog to see more of our trip!

 

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Baby Gift Guide!

November 19, 2018

It’s that time of the year again when you have no idea what to buy anyone! Hooray! In honor of Jovie babes first Christmas, I have put together a baby gift guide for all those cute little babies in your life!

Toys!

  1.  Explore & More Follow-Bee Crawl Toy: My kids have all LOVED this toy! It is so fun to chase around the room when they are learning to crawl! 

  2. Fill and Spill Beaver:  This is adorable and perfect for any baby who loves to take stuff out and put it back in all day long! 

  3. Ball Popper: The snail was just too adorable to pass up, and I was completely sold when I saw that it lights up too!

  4. Roly Poly Owl: Another adorable toy that I couldn’t pass up.  This toy is perfect for when baby is just starting to sit up (and beyond) It also lights up!

  5. Silver Lining Cloud Baby’s View Activity Center: This is Jovie’s “large” gift this year from Santa! I wanted to think of something she actually needed and when I saw this activity center I totally loved the clouds and rainbow! SO cute and practical! 

  6. Looky-Looky Crawl Along Mirror: This is so cute when baby is learning to crawl!  Non-Toys! (Because sometimes it is nice to buy some things that baby actually needs, they don’t know either way!)

  7. Skip Hop Zoo Tuck-Away Bib: This is perfect for the baby bag or to keep in the back of the high chair, and comes in SO MANY adorable animals! 

  8. Skip Hop Zoo Silicone Bib: This is another great bib! I love these because they have a pouch to catch food AND they are so easy to wipe or wash clean.

  9. Fold & Go Silicone Placemat: This is great to store in the baby bag and take to restaurants!  

  10. Premium Burp Cloths: Copper Pearl burp cloths are my all time favorite! Every mama and baby needs them! 

  11. Adorable Bibs: If you are going to wear a bib, why not make it a adorable one???

  12. Muslin Quilt Blanket:  These blankets are my FAV!  So thick, soft and the quality is amazing! It’s such a great gift that baby can use for a really long time! It also comes in so many adorable patterns.

     

  13. Hooded Towel Set: Because you can never have enough adorable bath towels around! 

    Stocking Stuffers!

  14. B. Toys Rain Glow Squeeze:  This is a adorable little rattle that lights up when you shake it!

  15. Accordion Zebra:  Squishy and cuddly, and all around CUTE! It squeaks, crinkles and lets your baby make their own music!

  16. Skip Hop Bandana Buddies Activity Toy: These come in so many different cute animals to pick from and have several different activities on them for baby.  These are great to hook to the carseat or stroller!

  17. LouLou Lollipop Teether: Every baby needs a teether (OR TEN!) So why not add one of these in their stocking??

  18. Peek & Play Activity Book: I love the vibrant colors of this book mixed with the black and white.  A book, and stand up play house in one!

    HAPPY SHOPPING FRIENDS!

 

xo Ashley

Shop

Brickyard Buffalo Guest Editor!

November 12, 2018

Hi guys! How is everyone surviving the beginning of the Holiday season??  Can you even believe that Thanksgiving is NEXT week!! Yep, I said it! Let the Christmas shopping begin! To help you get a head start I have teamed up with Brickyard Buffalo to hook you up with some deals on a few of my favorite things!

  1. How perfect is this dress?? The perfect earth tone colors for family gatherings or photos! You will definitely be seeing me in this on Thanksgiving! AND it’s 30% off this week!

      2. Jovie lives in this Nomad Kids Honey Romper! Its so simple, soft, cozy and just perfect! AND it’s 20% off this week!

3. I am a BIG fan of Felt Ball Garland, and these Christmas options are too cute! I mean, LOOK at those tiny reindeer! Head over to Brickyard Buffalo for even more adorable garlands to pick from!

4. Christmas Jammies, DUH!!! We have been rocking Christmas Pjs since November 1st and this Buffalo Checkered print is so good all winter long!

5. It gets even better!! YOU can match your little with these Women’s size PJs!  Also a really great Christmas gift! Only $19.99, SAY WHAT??

6. My house is filled with ALL the bows, and Zozu bows is one of my all time favorite bow brands and has been for YEARS! How beautiful is this pink color??  Make sure to head over to Brickyard to see a couple other color options! They are a KILLER deal with week! $7.99, regular $12!

7. This “Tiny Girl Gang” sign is one of my favorite things in the girls room! I mean, look at it! It would also be such a special Christmas gift! She also has a “Bright Eyed & Bushy Tailed” option!

8. This Thermal is my go-to shirt this fall and winter! So easy to throw on! It comes in this olive color and black!

9. Rompers you guys, give me all of them! This one is perfect to dress up, or down! Also, I spy some buttons, making this bad boy nursing friendly! WOOT WOOT! (it also comes in black!)

10. This button back top is so simple and adorable! I got it in this gorgeous brown color, but it also comes in black!! It’s basically a steal over on Brickyard Buffalo for $22 bucks!!!

11. Rags are some of my all time favorite outfits to put my kiddos in! They are so comfy and stylish! Snag some at 30 percent off this week!

 

Head to Brickyard Buffalo to see all of my picks for the week and make sure to snag some deals before they are gone!

 

XO Ashley

 

Uncategorized

Karis’ Magical 4th Birthday Party!

June 9, 2018

Karis is 4.  YES, my baby is FOUR! What better way to celebrate then by throwing her a UNICORN party! I let her pick her theme this year and was not at all surprised when she wanted unicorns! Balloons, Unicorns, face painting, a jumper, and bracelet making! What else does a 4 year old need??? Here are some photos from the party and all the details!

Karis’ dress: Pleiades Designs

Karis’ Bows: A Little Lady Shop

Custom Unicorn Plates/Party Favors: The Personalized Plate

Honeycomb Ball Centerpieces: Just Artifacts

Candy: Party City and Amazon

Pink Gumball Machines: Dollar Tree

Unicorn Banner, Felt Ball Garland, Table Confetti, Star Banner: Pearl & Jane

Purple Tablecloth: Amazon

Cake Table Tablecloth: Amazon

Milk Bottles: Amazon

Crazy Straws: Target

Children Chairs: a local party rental store

Bracelet Supplies: Michael’s

Balloons: Party City

 

Summertime with Beach House Swim

May 21, 2018

Summertime is JUST around the corner and you will find me and my family at the beach all season long! My new accessory this year, a growing baby bump! Finding a flattering swimsuit is hard and I have fully embraced the “suns out, bumps out” motto! Baby need some vitamin D and she will be getting it thanks to  Beach House Swim!

Click HERE for my swimsuit from Beach House Swim! It is the cutest swimsuit AND doubles as active wear for outside of the water! Can you say PERFECT for chasing the kiddos around??

I would love to know what YOUR favorite summertime activity is! Leave me a comment and let me know!

 

XO Ashley

End of the Year Teacher Gift!

May 1, 2018

The end of the school year is just around the corner; can you believe it???  Karis is wrapping up her first year as a big ol’ preschool kid and her teacher has sure made a impact on her (a REALLY good one, don’t worry!)  Karis has loved every minute of school and is so sad to hear she has to take a break in the summer.  So how on earth do I thank her teacher for all she has done??  I have teamed up with Snapfish to show you all our end of the year gift for Mrs. Jamison.

Snapfish is always my go to for personalized gifts, and this time was no different.  They make it easy and affordable to customize and turn an ordinary gift into something special! I am a big sucker for a cute gift basket; who isn’t???

Here is what’s in our end of the year teacher gift basket…

  1. A personalized hardcover journal with “Mrs. Jamison” on the front and “It takes a big heart to help shape little minds.”  on the back. You are able to make the journal say whatever you want, and I thought that quote was just the sweetest!
  2. Personalized Stationary  I thought this was a perfect gift to add to the basket since Karis’ teacher is always sending out little notes to her students.
  3. A personalized “thank you” card.  Mainly because I thought putting Karis’ face on a card was the cutest thing ever! Her teacher will totally think the same, right?!?!
  4. A few extra goodies were chocolate, chapstick and a little plant! Some other ideas would be a coffee gift card, your teacher’s favorite candy or snacks, or a cute water bottle they can use in the summertime!

This is such a small token of gratitude for all that teachers do for our children all year long! I know she will love the personalized touches and thoughtfulness that was put into it! If you love this idea for a teacher, or even to get a gift for a graduate in your life please use code YAYGRAD for 40% your order at Snapfish.com!

 

XO Ashley

Carmex for Everyone!

January 11, 2018

This is a sponsored post in paid partnership with Carmex

Winter lips are no joke around here! All of our lips get super dry in the winter and it does NOT help that cold season is going around, making our lips even worse!  That is why I am loving Carmex for the entire family!

Who else has a car lip balm, a purse lip balm, a bedside lip balm, and a bathroom lip balm?? I DO!  I literally keep it every where for whenever we might need it!

Here are some of my families personal favorites that I know your family would love to!

My husband is loving the classic stick. It is super easy to slide in his pocket, or keep in the car and it provides long lasting moisture and keeps lips hydrated so he doesn’t have to be applying it all day!

My kiddos love the Daily Care flavors. So many yummy flavors, their personal favorites are Daily Care Wintergreen.  According to Karis, if you lick your lips they taste good too! (Whatever you say kid!) I love Daily Care for them because it features SPF 15. Their second favorite is Carmex Comfort Care Mixed Berry, is has 100% natural ingredients (so it’s totally okay that they are eating more than they are putting on their lips, right??)

My personal favorite is the Cold Sore Treatment. Cold Sores be gone!

Did you know that cold sores are the most common in the winter? This is for all types of different reason, including heightened stress levels (cough cough Holidays), the cold and dry weather, and an increase in the flu.  Emphases on the flu! This flu season is INTENSE!  There is no for sure way to prevent a cold sore outbreak BUT there are steps you can take to reduce the likelihood of them showing up. TRY and lessen your stress. Easier said then done, trust me I know! Take the basic precautions to guard yourself against the cold or flu.  Wash your hands, drink plenty of water and clean your phone screen and keyboard regularly. SO many germs on your phone! AHHHH  And if you still feel that telltale tingle, no worries, Carmex® Cold Sore Treatment has got your back!

We are keeping our lips soft and kissable this winter and all year long thanks to Carmex!

 

XO Ashley

Surviving Cold Season!

December 31, 2017

Help! Flu season is here and with Karis in preschool this year she is brining home ALL the unwanted germs! I am trying my best to keep our hands washed and my kiddos healthy but the snot noses are bound to come! I am LOVING Dr Brown’s for creating a true life saver! Nose and Face Wipes coming in for the win! Wiping a child’s face all day long can seriously dry out their sensitive skin. These wipes moisturize as they wipe AND dissolve mucus.  I am going to call that a win, win.  Not only that but Karis actually loves using them.  She knows they make her feel better and she even asks for them. I keep a pack in my baby bag at all times, and one in the bathroom for when we are home!

BUT WAIT, there’s more! The Dr Brown’s Nose and Face Wipes are not only useful when the kiddos have runny noses, they are also great for every day use! My girls are MESSY.  I am wiping food, dirt, and mystery items (yikes) off their little faces all day.  Insert Nose and Face Wipes here…

So for sick days, and every other day, I am loving these wipes so much and I hope you all have a pack or TEN ready to roll!

XO Ashley

Snowland at Great Wolf Lodge!

December 13, 2017

My family and I kicked off our Christmas season with a trip to Great Wolf Lodge! We headed there the weekend after Thanksgiving, also the weekend they were kicking off Snowland! Let me tell you, it was pure MAGIC.  Three year old and one year old mind blowing magic! The snowland activities included, snow in the main lobby all throughout the day, a holiday themed story time every night (followed by snowfall of course!), Santa’s arrival and photos with the man himself, Christmas cookies and hot cocoa, Christmas carols sung in the lobby (how did you guess?? Followed by snow fall!!), a Christmas tree and garland in our room, the BIGGEST real gingerbread house you will ever see, a fully decorated lobby, and THE best way to start our Christmas season!

Snowland was just the smallest taste of all Great Wolf Lodge has to offer, we spent two wonderful nights and I am SO positive Karis could have spend two years! She asks every single day when we will be going back!  The water park was a huge hit for every one of us.  It was something we all enjoyed, even Bexley! Karis and I loved the lazy river, who doesn’t??, Eric loved the wave rider, and Bex loved the shallow kiddy area with all type of hands on activities! It is also fully indoors and they keep it at a very comfortable temperature so no matter the weather outside, it is bathing suit weather at the water park! How fun us that???

BUT WAIT, there’s more! This place is NOT just a water park! There is a 24 hour arcade, a miniature bowling alley, a place to stuff your own stuffed animal wolf or other critter, a glitter tattoo station, interactive scavenger hunts, several restaurants and places to get treats, a dance party, forest time friend show, story time and character appearance every night, a Dunkin’ Donuts (WIN!), A candy shop, ballon twisting, face painting, crafts, and the cutest gift shop!

We ended our visit with a Character breakfast (buffet style!).  Karis was SO excited to get unlimited pancakes and meet all the characters. Violet the wolf was her favorite.  I’m sure Bexley will like the characters next time, but for now she stuck with the unlimited food option.  ONE last waterpark session (because we HAD to!) and then we hit the road.

Thank you SO much Great Wolf Lodge for one of the most fun family vacations we have ever had! We will see you SO soon!

(We visited the Southern California location, make sure to check out their website to find the location nearest you!)

XO Ashley