Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Gifts for 1 & Under

**affiliate links are used in this post** on the sea play mat:  I have eyed this forever.  But never bit the bullet as we already have a great activity mat.  This is the prettiest one, for a tiny ocean lover!

2.  montessori toys:  little wooden toys that teach through play.

3. If i were a fox:  we have a couple of these and I think they are perfect first books for babies.  something for their senses and to engage them on each page.

4.  camera teether:  a cute little teether now and something to use with their imagination later.

5.  wooden activity gym:  a lot cuter than the one we have!!

6.  Jellycat:  give me ALL the jellycats!  for me, er, I mean my kids ... (:  these are the cutest, and so soft.

7.  Bunny lovey:  available in blue or pink.  such soft sweet little loveys to (hopefully/please God) send them to sleep.

8.  Lamaze toys:  they may not be the cutest, but they're great for babies brain development and are the first toys my kids really loved playing with!

9.  shark bath towel:  I never tire of an adorable bath towel.  especially these shark ones!  they come in pink too.

10.  Farm stacker:  soft and adorable little stacker.

1.  Joovy spoon walker:  I love putting some puffs on here and watching wes tear it up around the house.  I only keep him in it in the rooms where we don't have drapes, so there's nothing for him to pull down and get into trouble.  I really love this thing!  Love that I can put snacks and different toys.  It also has a removable tray so it's easy to keep clean.  We also take it outside and let him feel the grass between his little feet.  He's pretty content there watching Tuck entertain him!

2.  haba aircraft baby swing:  one of the cutest little johnny jump ups.  We have one on the porch at my parents and wes loves bouncing and watching everyone.

3.  band set:  this one is so cute! a set both of my kids can enjoy.

4.  melissa and doug walker:  for the little one learning to walk this is perfect!

5.  fire truck ride on:  you likely know we are big fire truck fans around here.  well, tuck is and I love anything he loves.  weird thing that happens to you when you have kids!!  this is a toy that wes will be able to crawl around on, but really use more in the coming year.

6. car rattles:  I ordered these for wesleys stocking as he loves anything that makes noises right now.  these ones are the girly counterparts.

7.  bibs:  while not the most exciting thing for a little 6-12 monther, necessary for starting solids.  These ones (c/o) have a super soft backer.  I use that to clean up the mess on his face after he's finished.  JB loves the fish one!!

8. unicorn towel:  seriously??!!  off the chart cuteness level.

9. mama and little teether necklace:  wes is obsessed with this teether necklace and it's actually cute!  this one is really cute too.

10.  puppet book from skip hop:  wes gets such a kick out of the little worm popping out of the tree.

What are you getting your kids for Christmas?  I'd love to hear suggestions!  What are you reading to them to get them excited?  We started reading this last week and the book to our giving manger too.

crazy tuckers

{I'm wearing camilyn beth // shoes
{wesley has on a jumper from a thrift shop that was a hand me down from tuck // bowtie from janie & jack -- tuck's outfit is from zara kids with his bowtie from the beaufort bonnet company} 

We did Christmas card pictures last week with our Shannon - who deserves a margarita or a trophy or some really good chocolate for putting up with us!   JB was supposed to get home a bit early, but got on a call that lasted over an hour.   When he got home we just had a few minutes of good light before the sun went down.  Wesley wasn't himself and later that night we discovered he had croup.  Lola got out and terrified sweet neighbor ladies walking.  We kept asking Tuck to "sit here" "wear this" and he would respond with "I cannot!"  ... um, okay.  Side note :  the days of dressing him exactly how I want are officially over.  It happened over night!  The past two days he will not wear anything but his batman pajama shirt (thankfully we have two to alternate from) and Wesleys cape from his superman pajamas.  He gets out of the shower and freaks out to put it back on.  while soaking wet!  So that's where we are.  He also frequently tells us all we are heroes.  "Wessie you a HE-RO!" I cannot help but laugh at it all. !  
Anyway, I love these photos and know I'll treasure them forever because they are a true snapshot of us, as we are, just with better clothes than we normally ever wear.  (:

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

no better motivation for a clean house like company!

**this is a sponsored post**

Last week we were knee deep in croup, thrush, and what seems to be a sinus infection (for me and JB).  The reason for the mostly radio silence since then.  
We also had company in from Switzerland, and thankfully I was able to clean a bit before they got here and before the bug hit us.   One spot I had to get to before they arrived was the special accident Lola had on our jute rug.  There is NO motivation like company coming over to clean up ... 
Jute is amazing for kids and dogs- but cleaning it for things like dog mess?  confusing.  While I was hesitant to use the Bissel on the jute, I tested it first on a small spot and it responded surprisingly well. {always test it!!}  I didn't use the whole vaccuum on it, just spot treated it with one of the attachments.  But voila!  No trace that a Lola had an accident here!  All of the praise hands.
Then I tried it on a rug I didn't think was all that dirty.  It gets vacuumed several times throughout the month.  But after the Bissel got to it - I was left half marveling- half completely disgusted at the filth I didn't know I was living in before the bissel came to stay with us.  

Literally the only fun thing about cleaning is seeing the filth you didn't know you were living in. this probably makes...
Posted by Sarah Tucker Styles on Saturday, November 21, 2015

I'm soooo glad I have the carpets cleaned up before company came to stay and now it's so nice to have done before Thanksgiving.  We are hosting 19 at our house on Thursday, so I have been a real joy to be around  cleaning house.  For some reason clean floors motivate me to keep the rest of the house clean.  I'm sure you've heard me talk about this before but I run this little guy every single day and am always amazed by the dust and dirt we track in and all over.  Him and Lola tie for best maids ever.  Now I'm excited to add in the Bissel to help with the rugs, and try it out on our white couches - it works on upholstery too!

**Big thanks to Bissel for sending me your rug/upholstery/puppy smell cleaner upper vacuum and helping me keep the house clean during the Holidays and y'all for reading!!**

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dixie Design Collective

Christmas Toile by Holly Hollon

I'm so excited to introduce y'all to the Dixie Design Collective!!  It's a beautiful collection from accomplished artists and calligraphers.  They are literally the prettiest Christmas cards on the market. I'd love to have your help picking a design- which one is your favorite?

I worked with Holly, one of the artists in the collective, last year on a wedding and was so impressed by every aspect of her business.  I asked her a few questions in case anyone is an aspiring designer and wants to know the behind the scenes (: 

And be sure to check out Dixie Design Collective - I can't wait for their baby and kids invitations/announcements to come!!!  

a little about Holly Hollon

Where Holly lives: Birmingham, Alabama

What advice would you give your 22 year old self? Work for someone else first. I am always approached by college students who want to freelance and want advice on getting started. I always recommend that they work in the industry for a couple of years before going out on their own. I worked in advertising for the first 4 years out of college and learned so much from those I worked under, I do not think my business would be where it is today without those opportunities.

What's the best part of your job? Having the freedom to take on the projects I want and getting to set my own schedule.

Movie you watch over and over: You've Got Mail

When you are feeling a bit burnt out, what do you do? Take a break, the best thing I can do is to take the full weekend off, by the time Monday comes around, I am ready to go again and I feel rested.

Best moment of your career so far? This past summer when I was able to take a 2 week vacation and not take any work with me! I have now been freelancing for 4 years and it is hard when you work for your self for things to ever stop. The first two years were really hard in that I was blessed with lots of work, but I over committed and I never got a break. The reason I freelance is to be able to one day be a stay at home more and let my business be able to be some extra provision for my family. I do not want the business to come before my family. My husband Charlton has been worked hard with me to help me learn to schedule work out and not over commit and know which projects to take on. It was so rewarding to see all that work we put into planning for the business come together and allow me to have a vacation this past summer and spend quality time with family.

Dream vacation? Paris

Friday, November 13, 2015

Wesley and I were supposed to head to Panama yesterday morning.  But baby got his first fever and turns out it is a nasty little virus.   Last time we were there I was waddling down the aisle, eight months pregnant, as a bridesmaid and JB as a groomsman.  I met Haley at our rehearsal dinner on January 15th, 2010.  They came over the night after the wedding and we toasted over some Seco Herrarano.  If you would have told me I was toasting with one of my soon to be dearest friends or that we'd one day live together in Panama, I would have been surprised.  At 26 I foolishly thought I'd already met and made all of my life long friends.  How grateful I am that that is not true.  How exciting that makes for the future.  Haley is the most pure of heart person I know.  She is beautiful (she was in Miss USA!) and poised and would be all kinds of intimidating in human form if she wasn't so kind, humble, honest and like I've already said - pure of heart.  And so funny!  I don't know that we've ever been with each other and not cried due to laughing so hard.  When she asked me to be her daughters god mother I was so honored.  I really will be praying for her, rooting her on, and spoiling her in any and every way I can think of, all the days of my life.  I'd already wrestle an alligator for her!  She's the best, just like her mom.  So while I wish we were able to be there tomorrow, for her Baptism, I know she'll understand one day that I had to take care of her boyfriend (;