a few ways to save when shopping online

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27 September 2016

hmmm shall I take a sip of my coffee or take a bite of my hair first? decisions galore.

denim (lucky thredUP find)
shirt - thrift store (similar here)
purse - c/o

yikes, Grace -- why don't you just hand us a pillow and tuck us in for a nice long nap with a post title like THAT?

I know! I know.

It's not sexy (although are things ever at the Camp? no) or wildly exciting BUT I've been rolling these around in my head for a few weeks and wanted to share my vast and expansive wealthy of knowledge. Lies. Nothing is vast or expansive in any of my knowledge banks but maybe a few of these little tips will help you - MAYBE. Frugal fingers crossed.

And my post title says a few but I came up with seven. Fluff those pillows. 

1. Secondhand - A lot fashion bloggers have blogged about how amazing these jeans are but the price? Not so amazing. I stalked thredUP for a week or two and watched the new arrivals like a hawk and found a pair for 90% off the original price. Yee Haw.

2. cart campers - okay so this doesn't work with every store but it does work with MANY stores. Make sure you're "signed in" to said store (my favorites are: ASOS, Old Navy, Anthropologie, Madewell, I'm blanking but there are more!) and put things in your cart (duh) and unless your size sells out (a risk you take) the item is bound to eventually go on permanent or temporary sale and you can snatch it up. This works especially well on Anthro's home items because they don't seem to sell out quickly and they mark them way, way down toward the end of the season. I love that ASOS puts things in a special little saved section after an hour of being in your cart and that J.Crew factory emails when something in my cart is about to sell out so I can decide if the price is finally right.

3. eBates - my brother tipped me off about eBates a couple years ago and going through your eBates link really adds up - especially around Christmas when (if you're like me) you buy almost everything online.

4. phone - I have a little rule for myself that I don't buy things on my phone. It's too easy and convenient to impulsively snag something. Plus, then I'm sure to go through my eBates link once I'm on my laptop. And now we're veering into budget territory which isn't a bad territory but it's not the point of the post. Back on track, Patton.

5. check Amazon - it's not always the case but sometimes (especially with shoes, especially especially with tennis shoes) things can be found for MUCH cheaper on Amazon. I remember when I was looking at this Maggie London dress at Nordstrom - certain colors were selling for a fraction of the price over on Amazon.

6. J.Crew/J.Crew factory - I know you know but but lots of classic J.Crew styles can be found over at J.Crew factory. For example ... this $350 dollar coat can be found over on Jcrew factory for $160 (and they have frequent sales).

7. Returns matter - again, another no-brainer but free and easy returns are key. Nordstrom, ASOS, Zara, and Madewell's denim (why not everything, Madewell?!) all include the return label in their packages. Amazon Prime does not but they refund your shipping if you send it yourself and you can print a label easily (if you have a printer, otherwise! you might have trouble) and I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting or just don't know about -- YET. Zappos gives you an entire year to return your (unworn) purchase as does Online Shoes.

Now that I've typed all these out I'm scratching my brow and wondering if they are even helpful but I can't let seven typed out points go to waste now, can I?

Don't answer that.

I didn't include the obvious like: never pay full price at Old Navy because if you wait a day or two - it WILL go on sale and it's smart to stock up when they are giving out super cash. And of course lots of places occasionally mark their clearance an additional 30/40/50% off and you can find some serious steals. And of course I hate to admit how much free shipping can make or break a purchase for me but it can. Listen up, retailers!

Simon just peeked over my shoulder and his eyes immediately glazed over so that's my CUE. Off to more exciting pastures - like bedtime routines. Party emojis forever and ever.

Friday on a Sunday

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25 September 2016

Linking up with Kelly!

1. as promised, collage-o-photo-fun


1. nap skipper
2. B was quite taken with this lady baby's hair.
3. ladies in hand-me-down Hawaiian prints (thank you Ruth!!)
4. eve of J's birthday wearing their fun shirts
5. from the sweetest friend
6. student of the month
7. shirt forever and ever and ever tucked into his undies
8. sneak peek or full peek at another dresser revamp
9. children at river - still life

2. This Is Us - everyone gave it glowing reviews and I did enjoy it! I think I had heard that SO many people loved it that my expectations were super high and while it didn't disappoint it doesn't rank up there with my all time favorite: Friday Night Lights ... yet. I didn't see that plot twist coming but Simon kept saying how outdated that delivery seemed so - it all made sense at the end. I have to admit that I'm super excited to watch the season premier of Grey's Anatomy tonight -- drama city.

3. I'm SURE you've seen the "describe yourself in three fictional characters" meme floating around and they are cracking me up. Simon and I tried to brainstorm ours last night and this is the best we could come up with ...

Simon ...

Captain Von Trapp (his pick)
Jim (mutual pick)
Matt Saracen (my pick)

4. And onto G-unit

Elizabeth Bennet (his pick)
Eeyore (my pick)
Pam (mutual pick)

If you think these are terrible picks - you try it! It's difficult. Seriously.

5. Books: Okay so I finished both Eight Hundred Grapes and I was pretty underwhelmed with the second half of the book which was disappointing. I'd give it a 3 out of 5 stars if I was in a generous mood. It may have been because I switched to the audio version half way through and it just seemed to change the entire tone? But, the plot was lacking too. Boo. Anyway, I also finished The Secret Life of Violet Grant and love love loved it. I'm so glad/relieved there are two more books in the trilogy. Onto Along the Infinite Sea!

6. Julie started a YouTube channel! Woo to the Hoo. So so so so SO excited.

7. Oh! Thank you for all of the book recs for Julia last week - I loved all of the votes for Elephant and Piggy because that is Phoebe's favorite book so if I could get Julia to read it to her -- champagne and bonbons - where you at?

Have a great (rest of your) weekend!!

trying the trend: overalls

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22 September 2016

purse (c/o)
photos by la-la-la-Laura!

Well, I finally bit the trend bullet just as I imagine the trend is leaving the trend station and found some reasonably priced overalls during a recent 40% off sale but I'm not sure I'm totally sold. I like them more than I thought I would but they are definitely not something I reach for every day. Maybe I need to look into overall shorts? Or it seems like a lot of the cool kids have wandered over into flare-alls territory (which, admittedly, I did try these but they were way too short and not in a cute cropped flare way, at all) so maybe I should follow suit. Or maybe I can just let my curiosity curl up and die. I think that would be fine too. 

The first thing Sebastian said when he saw me dressed in my overalls was, "oh, why are you dressed like a Minion?" and then Theo walked in and asked why I was wearing one of Bosco's outfits so it's safe to say that my kids are big BIG fans. 

Anyway, I'm glad I tried because that's the whole point of the series. I'm thinking I might be daring and go the denim skirt route next (why why WHY did I get rid of my college collection?) or maybe go extra wild with boots and a dress? Time well tell. It always does

And now I'm off to muck some stalls and then return my outfit to its rightful Minion. 


keeping up with kombucha

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21 September 2016

This post was created in partnership with KeVita. Thank you for reading, and stay tuned for a giveaway at the end of the post!

I know you know how much we've enjoyed going to the beach since we moved here, as evidenced by my multitude of posts about our trips. I hadn't really thought much about the evolution of how our trips have changed in the past year until the other night. It's funny because initially I thought that taking a nap and schedule dependent little baby would be more difficult than taking a happy-go-lucky mobile baby/toddler to the beach but guess what? I was wrong.

Previously, one of us always had to be sitting with a napping Bosco or walking him around in the carrier and that person, unofficially, had the easier job because he was pretty happy and agreeable and sometimes asleep thanks to the world's largest sound machine mere feet away.

And now? He's almost a full-time job for both of us at the beach because he did not get the shy gene that some of our kids possess and sprint-crawls to various neighboring beach goer's camps, to the water, and to giddily destroy his sibling's sand creations.

Sebastian forming a human barricade until Simon can come to the rescue.

We find ourselves having to kind of, "deep breath and gear up" for the great Bosco chase beachcapades these days. Basically, what I'm saying is that we still love love LOVE going to the beach but wish we could switch out our batteries about 1/2 way through our trip. Luckily, KeVita offered to send some of their wonderful products that are perfect for busy outings with the kids.

B sees the water and all but leaps out of my arms ...

At home he wants to be held, held, and held some more but at the beach? hasta la vista, MOM - go ahead and show off your KeVita all by yourself.

I know a lot of my friends are big Kombucha drinkers and as usual, I'm tardy to the party but I'm hoping I'm only fashionably late because the benefits of KeVita's Master Brew Kombucha are kind of mind blowing. Brimming with live probiotics, organic acid, and natural caffeine (80mg is equivalent to a cup of green tea) KeVita's Kombucha is a genius and much healthier alternative to my afternoon/evening caffeinated drink of choice that inevitably leads to a crash and bedtime burn right when I need that last push to get the kids down.

If you're not ready to go full on Kombucha, KeVita has a really tasty line of sparkling probiotic drinks ...

... to help ease you in. My favorite is the Strawberry Acai Coconut and Simon's (not pictured) is the Lime and Coconut Mojita.

I didn't think Simon would go for even the sparkling probiotic drinks but he ended up drinking most of my drink I had designated for myself on a recent beach trip before drinking his own Lime Mojita on the drive home ...

caught red sparkling strawberry-handed.

Without being able to actually give you a taste of my/our sparkling probiotic drink - I'll try to explain as best I can. They are light, refreshing, and fruity having been naturally fermented with Water Kefir Culture and have four strains of live probiotics and four billion CFUs that help support digestive and immune health.

And the real deal Master Brew Kombucha is also sparkling but has a bolder brewed taste. It's fermented with black and green tea, kombucha culture and also includes two strains of live probiotics and four billion CFUs and is enriched with B vitamins. Master Brew Kombucha come in a wide variety of flavors including: Ginger, Pineapple Peach, Raspberry Lemon, Citrus, Dragonfruit, Lemongrass, and Mango HabeƱero.

Anyway, it helps me keep up with these little hooligans ...

... and realize that kombucha is living up to the hype.

In addition to tasty drink making, KeVita also recently launched a new #innerselfie app that's (you guessed it!) a really fun selfie app. For every photo uploaded through the app, KeVita will donate $1 to the Gastric Cancer Foundation. If you're going to take a selfie - might as well be for a good cause, says I.

Anyway, would you like to try some KeVita for yourself? Good! Because they are generously giving a 3 month supply away to one lucky reader! Follow the Rafflecopter widget to (hopeful!) victory ...

Thanks for reading and playing :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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20 September 2016


You'll never guess based on the post title and above photos but ... Julia turned six today. I say it every year because she's the oldest and blazing the uncharted trail on our parenting front but I can't believe we have a six year old on our hands because she really and truly was just born yesterday - or so it seems. We're going to wake up to driver's ed and prom next year - or so it also seems.

I remember always feeling like Julia was an especially difficult toddler or maybe I was just a new mom (probably the latter) but she's more than made up for her (alleged) rough toddlerhood these past few years and grown into such a fun little lady. I've mentioned before how much she adores school and we were able to bring doughnuts to her class at lunch today and really see her in her element which was a blast.

All she wanted to do for her birthday was go swimming and eat pizza for dinner along with strawberry cake (aka not my traditional carrot cake) for dessert. There were a couple of very last minute (aka last night) requests for purple balloons and a, "character party" and I'll let you guess which dream we made come alive. We have a trip to Legoland planned as kind of a joint Sebastian and Julia celebration in October - lest you worry she was completely deprived of a celebration.

I've always said I just didn't have the Pinterest party gene in me (though I admire and salute those who do!) but that I'd always make the kids homemade cakes, at the very least.

You want to know the origin of that cake and icing?

box and can.

And guess who is just as happy - if not happier?

Everyone involved.

Happy, Happy Birthday sweet Julia Grace! 


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