Hi there!

Hey lovelies, welcome to SDB! I'm Natasha. I am a walking, talking mombie fueled by coffee. I am obsessed with shoes, all things glittery and/or sparkly, and I have an owl obsession. We talk about everything from motherhood, lifestyle, and all things inbetween. I am a mom of three kids and we reside in the Pacific Northwest. Thanks for tagging along! Now lets sit back and sip on a cup of coffee in the AM or wine in the PM and lets relax.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Packing for SoCal: What I Plan to Bring on Vacation


Sunshine and ninety degree weather,
California here we come!

This post contains affiliate links.

My husband and I leave to California in a few days and I haven't even started packing. Yup, I'm that person who waits until the very last minute to pack my bag. It doesn't help that I also am in charge of packing all three kids for Grandma and Grandpa's house too.

I know what I plan on bringing... Well, at least I think I do. I managed to snag some new items for our trip and I can't wait to wear them. Here is what I plan on bringing to Palm Desert with me: 

1. Shorts. I love summer-like weather because I get to rock shorts. I will be packing at least two pairs of denim shorts and a dressy pair for a night out on the town with my husband. Right now Target has some cute denim shorts for $20. You can find all sorts of them here.

2. Flowy tanks. I picked up three really cute tanks from Wal-Mart for $5 a pop. You can find them here. The material is light and airy and can be worn as casual wear or dressed up.

3. Sandals. A must for vacation. I purchased a pair of black Steve Madden Gladiator sandals from Ross for less than $20. I love them!

4. Jeans. I know it's going to be hot in Cali, however, it will be chilly when we come home to PDX. Just in case I plan on bringing my favorite pair of jeans with me to wear on the plane.

5. Pumps or wedges. I love an excuse to wear heels and feel a little more put together when I get to wear them. In my line of work I don't get to dress up all the time unless I am attending school meetings or doing mission moments with our donors and trying to chase kids around the park in heels is a big hell to the nah. I won't be chasing my little ones in California so I can wear a pair of heels or wedges out to dinner.

6. Dress. Just in case I want to look a little fancy. I can pair it with pumps or wedges or dress it down with sandals.

7. Swimsuits. I have a tendency to pack way to many swimsuits when I going on vacation. I plan on bringing two or three suits with me. I know for sure that we will be hot tubing in the evening but I'm not sure if we will have time to sit by the pool. We will see.

8. Floppy Hat. Nothing screams vacation like a big floppy sun hat! I picked up a super cute one last month at Forever 21 for $8. I plan on rocking my new hat in Cali by the pool or when we are out and about to protect my neck and shoulders from the sun. You can find a similar style here.

9. Sneaks. We will be hitting up the zoo in Palm Desert, so sneakers are a must for walking around. I really want to feed a giraffe!

10. Yoga pants, sports bras, & T-shirts. Clearly for lounging around the house or working out...maybe. This outfit is my lazy girl attire.

11. Toiletries and Undergarments. All the obvious stuff you need when traveling. It includes my makeup, hair products, bras, underwear, socks, and a razor. Got to smell good and look good while on my trip.

12. Sunblock and shades. My husband will probably laugh at me when he reads this, but I'm getting older and I need to protect my skin from the sun. I tan within five minutes of being out in the sun and have never burned in my life. I don't plan on burning while in the desert. I just plan on getting lots of vitamin D on this trip.

Now that I know what I plan on packing, it's time to actually plan out my outfits and pack my luggage. What do you usually bring on vacation?

Monday, March 28, 2016

Mom Confessions: Bye Bye Tonsils


 
"So I have bad news..." My husband told me over the phone on Monday after my sons Ears, Nose, and Throat appointment. 

"What is it?" I asked.

"Amari needs to get surgery..."

"What?" 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

At the age of six my oldest will be getting his tonsils and adenoids removed. I don't know how I am supposed to feel. I'm a little scared.
 
My son's scared. I don't blame him for being scared though. The last time he had surgery was when he was eight months old. He doesn't remember it, but he will remember getting his tonsils out this time around. 

Trev told him that he gets to eat all the ice cream and Popsicles he wants along with other cold foods. He was excited about the ice cream part but deep down I could see the fear in his eyes. He kept on asking lots of questions and of course those questions carried on all week long.

His surgery has been scheduled for April 12th, a week after spring break. He will miss a week from school which I don't like one bit. I am hoping we can get his schoolwork sent home so he doesn't get behind academically. I am praying that everything goes smoothly and that his recovery is quick, easy, and as painless as possible. Amari doesn't tolerate pain well. 

I am a lot more nervous than the whole school bus riding ordeal. When he had his first surgery as a baby I was a hot mess! I didn't sleep much the night before and worried throughout his four hour surgery. I hope this time it won't be so bad. I have no idea what to expect. 

I feel like I am I overreacting over this. Is it as bad as I am thinking it could be? Someone please ease my anxiety and fears and just tell me that everything is going to be okay. I naturally am a worrier and of course I am worrying a whole three weeks until the actual event. It's silly, I know, but I wouldn't be much of a mom if I didn't worry about my children. I will worry about all three of them for the rest of my life. The thought of one of my babies being in pain or being scared of something like surgery causes me great anxiety. For now, I will pray, pray, and keep on praying and do my best as a mother to help ease the fears that my son has about getting his tonsils and adenoids out. It's really the only thing that I can do in the end. 

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Shortbread Easter Cookies with Chocolate Hazelnut Frosting



This is my first attempt at making shortbread cookies. I searched the wonderful world of Pinterest until I stumbled upon one I wanted to try. My baking cabinets was limited but I did manage to have enough to whip these babies up including an unopened tub of chocolate hazelnut frosting. Score for me!  I rolled the dough out and used my super cute Easter cookie cutters. The dough is soft and crumbly. Add extra flour if needed. 

Ingredients: 

2 cups Flour 
1/2 cup Powdered Sugar 
2 sticks Butter (1 cup), room temperature 
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract 

Directions: 

1. Mix together softened butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla. It will be nice and creamy.

2. Slowly pour in flour and mix with wet ingredients. Chill dough for 20-30 minutes.

3. Prep nonstick pans by spraying with Pam or other cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

4. When dough is chilled, form into a ball on a flour surface. Roll flat with a rolling pin and cut out shaped cookies with a cookie cutter. I used Easter eggs, flowers, bunnies, and carrot cookie cutters. Bake for 9 minutes. 

5. When cookies are cool spread Phillsbury Chocolate Hazelnut frosting over the cookies and decorate with sprinkles. 

 
These cookies are simple and pretty tasty. They don't take long to make and you only need four ingredients. My kids and husband loved these and the bunny cookies were their favorite ones. Can you blame them? They are pretty stinking cute. Enjoy! 

Thanks for stopping bye. Have a wonderful day. 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Mom Confessions: The School Bus


Talan started preschool. Last Friday marked two weeks. My little boy is growing up and I can't help but feel a little anxiety about it all.

I send my three year old all the way across town on the little school bus.... It's the only school in the district with a special needs program.

For weeks I was nervous after multiple evaluations as they figured out his school placement and IEP documentation. So many thoughts raced through my head when they told us their decision. Would my baby be safe? Did the school district do background checks on the bus drivers? Would the bus have a car seat with a five strap harness? I kept myself up so many nights over the entire thing. It was bad and I was unsettled for weeks.

The first four days of preschool I drove him to school each morning. It was a twenty minute drive across town and twenty minutes back to my eldest son's school. I was content with that. I was the one taking my son and some of the fears that I had went away until the transportation department called me to schedule the first day he would take the bus. Transportation would start on a Thursday and all those feelings came right back. I barely slept that night.

Was it wrong of me to get so worked up over something so simple? It was just a school bus.

The next morning I put the youngest two in the wagon and walked along side my oldest son. Anxiety ate at me like the plague as I pulled the wagon along the street. It was a gray and chilly morning and that nervous, anxious feeling ate at my belly and was consuming me. I had no idea how Talan would handle the school bus and honestly I was a little scared for him.

It was all so new...  

He's only three after all.

I felt sick to my stomach.

Talan was used to going to school by now. He had been going for a week in total. I just hoped that he would enjoy going to school on the bus. 

The sound of it driving down the street pulled me out of my thoughts. I looked at Talan who stared wide-eyed at the small but big yellow vehicle coming down the road. It stopped in front of us and the door swung open. The bus driver Jim greeted us with a hello and Talan hopped out of the wagon and climbed up the steps and onto the bus like he had done this before.  I followed him and helped him into the car seat with a five strap harness. Yes, buses have car seat's for preschool-aged children if you did not know that. I asked because I was stressing out about it!

I kissed his forehead and told Talan I loved him and that I would see him tonight when I got home from work. When he realized that I wasn't going on the bus with him he cried. He cried hard. My heart broke as I got off the bus and waited for it to pull away. I stared after the bus as it drove down the road and disappeared around the bend. I'm not going to lie, I felt a little sick and sort of defeated. I felt like a bad mom but deep down I knew that this was for the best. Talan was going to school to work on his cognitive and social skills and that was really all that mattered in the end.

He's one brave little boy. He's always been that way.

It has been a full two weeks now that he has been taking the bus to and from school. He loves it! I enjoy our walks to the bus stop each morning. It has become one of my favorite things to do during the day. Every morning I look forward to our walks as we listen to the birds chirp and Talan points at the blossoming trees, the animals he sees, and enjoys making his little sister laugh as I pull them along in the wagon. I watch Amari run up ahead; stick in hand as he pretends to be a Storm Trooper or a Jedi. All of my fears and anxieties have washed away. I now find it rather silly that I was so stressed out about the entire bus riding thing. It was stupid now that I look back on it all.

Bus stop days have and will become some of my fondest memories and I will hold on to them dearly from now on.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Easter Basket Ideas for the Kids: Ages 6 and Under


Easter is just around the corner and I have been thinking about what to put in the kids baskets this year. I have a little too much fun shopping for goodies and picking out fun toys and treats for my two boys and daughter. It’s a little too fun if you ask me. I am like a kid in a candy store when it comes to buying goodies for my babies. I love it so much!
 
I purchased their Easter baskets from Cost Plus World Market  a few years ago. I believe that they sale them every year and they are really well made and cheap. They also are very pretty and come in various colors. I bought pink, blue, and green. We use these baskets each year to save money but most importantly to focus on creating family traditions and memories. All three kids know what basket belongs to them so there is no fighting or bickering over the goodies inside. Best idea I have ever had, hands down.
 
I am not too keen on filling baskets with candy but rather useful items and healthy snacks. We do give them one chocolate bunny. My children are six and under and I don't want three kids running around like little Tasmanian Devil’s destroying the house when they already are hyperactive children. They get plenty of candy in the Easter eggs anyways. I have put together a list of items that I have put in their baskets over the years and that they like. 

1. Easter Plates 

2. Easter Cups 

3. Coloring Book

4. Crayons, markers, or colored pencils

5. Stickers

6. Play Dough 

7. Bubbles 

8. Chalk

9. Applesauce Pouches

10. Easter Book

11. Puzzles

12. Glow Sticks 

13. Action Figures or Dolls

14. Hair Ties, Headbands, Hair Clips

15. Sun Hat or Baseball Cap

16. Flip Flops

17. Swimsuits

18. Ball

19. Teething Toys

20. Bath Toys 

21. Gold Fish crackers

22. Socks and underwear 

23. Legos

24. Moccasins

25. Movies 

26. Small Games

27. Educational Workbook 

28. Pokémon cards, flash cards, baseball cards

29. T-shirt or onesie 

30. Chapstick 

All of these items can be found pretty much at any store. I plan on shopping at the Dollar Tree, hitting up Target's bargain section, and Old Navy. I hope this list gives you some ideas for your children's Easter baskets this year. If I missed anything feel free to leave a comment below and I will add it to the list.
 
Thanks for stopping bye. Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Apple Cinnamon Danish

I have been incredibly busy this past week with work and I am also trying to recover from a really bad cold the kid's passed on to me. I feel absolutely horrible and pretty much have just been trying to get healthy the past few days. I felt well enough yesterday to bake up a sweet treat for my family and make them dinner.

I always keep Pillsbury Crescent Rolls in the fridge. My kids love to eat them. Today I will be sharing an easy Danish recipe that I originally found on TfDiaries four years ago. It doesn't take too long to whip up. The original recipe that I found was made with raspberries. I have made a bunch of different batches over the years like strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, mixed berries but my all time favorite one is apple cinnamon. Here is the recipe to my Apple Cinnamon Danish. It is sweet, packed with cinnamon, and really delicious.

Ingredients:

1 tube Pillsbury Crescent Roll 
1 tube cream cheese, room temperature  
1 teaspoon butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
2 apples, chopped 
Cinnamon Sugar seasoning
2 teaspoons sugar 

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In frying pan cook chopped apples in 1 teaspoon butter and 2 teaspoons sugar on medium heat until tender. Feel free to add more cinnamon and sugar if you like your apples extra sweet.

2. While apples cook unroll crescent roll. Cut one inch strips along the sides of the dough. 

3. Whip together cream cheese, one teaspoon butter, vanilla extract, and sugar until smooth. Spread filling down the center of the dough. Spoon apples on top of the cream cheese filling and braid the dough together (it might rip a bit and look ugly but that's okay). 

4. Bake for 15-20 minutes until dough is a nice golden brown. Let cool for 5 minutes and serve warm. 


Enjoy! This Apple Cinnamon Danish is delicious. I like to enjoy it with a cup of coffee. It's perfect for an easy breakfast, brunch, or afternoon tea with your girls. 

Thanks for stopping bye. Enjoy your day!