Valentine’s Day Fun

Hello friends! I hope you had an amazing weekend. Since Valentine’s Day falls on a Wednesday this year, we decided to celebrate on Saturday. I’m sure I will do a little something for the kids and Jason on the actual day, but since we have school and church it just made more sense to celebrate on Saturday when we had more time together. Read on for more about our Valentine’s Day Fun!

First up, the table! Y’all who know me know that any holiday starts with a decorated table. This is something I love to do for my kids, and I try my best to do it for each holiday. There’s just something about fun themed decorations and balloons that make their faces light up as they enter the room.

More Examples: Boo to You Halloween Dinner * Back to School Table Decor

Valentine's Day table decor

We do presents for each child. I know some people don’t do presents and that’s completely OK! I set a $10-15 budget for each child and Jason and I have recently implemented a rule that they can’t have toys with a million tiny pieces (Legos are the exception). Poppy got a Princess Belle doll, Sullivan got a Mickey and Roadster Races race car track (that I found on clearance), and Cooper got a Pokemon Lego set.

Valentine's Day table decor

The table runner is old fabric from Hobby Lobby. I’m not honestly sure where the heart boxes are from; I’ve had them for years. The center heart is plastic and was from the Dollar Tree, as were the plates and napkins. Do you recognize the envelopes? They are old and from the Target Dollar Spot.

Valentine's Day

My kids love balloons. LOVE. I mean they honestly were more excited about the balloons than the presents. I got these from the Dollar Tree.

I picked up doughnuts the night before and we had a sweet treat breakfast and opened their presents.

Valentine's Day table decor

This is a little tradition I started a few years back. I have different colored hearts for each child, and Jason and I take turns writing reasons that we love them. Some years we get the kids in on the action and they write hearts for their siblings. I used heart doilies this year, and foam hearts for Poppy. All were from – you guessed it – the Dollar Tree.

Valentine's Day appreciation gifts

Next up are some Valentine’s Day goodies. The cookies are for my girlfriends – the package of Oreo Red Hot cookies says “Valentine, you are red hot!” The bottom cookie is Chips Ahoy Smores and the tag says “I need SMORE friends like you in my life.”

The gift on the left is a teacher gift. It was a hand towel from Wal-Mart ($1), a package of Lindt chocolate truffles, and I’ll be adding a $5 gift card before I give it to Cooper’s teacher on Wednesday.

Valentine's Day

Everyone needs some soft and sexy makeup for Valentine’s Day, right? On Tuesday, I’ll be sharing how to achieve this makeup look on Instagram. You can find me @andrearhouse. I will post the tutorial to my Instastories, and if you are viewing after the 24 hour period has elapsed, it will be saved to my highlights. Come check it out!

Update: Unfortunately I was not able to post a tutorial on Instastories on Tuesday, but it is coming soon! Make sure you are following me, and you can always check my Highlights for pas tutorials, product reviews, and swatches.

What are you planning for Valentine’s Day?

Halloween Happenings

Hey friends! Did you survive Halloween? I AM EXHAUSTED. I feel like I’m been on a hamster wheel and I can’t get off for the past few weeks. We have absolutely no plans this weekend, and I am so looking forward to one solid Saturday of lounging in my pajamas, watching some bad television, and eating a big crock pot of queso. I can’t wait!

I wanted to write about our Halloween Happenings before we move on to the next thing – Thanksgiving and Christmas! Wahoo! It’s my favorite time of year.

Before I get started, I want to address what will probably be the elephant in the room. Yes, you will see my children in different costumes. No, I don’t go out and buy a different costume for every event or party we go to. I shop at consignment stores, we use our dress up items, I build off dresses I already have in Poppy’s closet… Halloween is fun! Why not wear different costumes? I always get a bit of side eye from people about this but have you met me? Come on. I do everything big. It’s just my personality. There are no rules! If you want to wear more than one costume, go for it! If you want to wear one single costume and throw it away at the end of Halloween night, yay for you! We don’t pay each other’s bills so I say do what works for you. 🙂

First up was the Halloween party at my dad’s work. My father works for SCE&G as a lineman, and each employee has the opportunity to pay into a event fund that they use to plan family events. They do a Halloween party, a Christmas party, and a Easter egg hunt. I’m always amazed to see what a group of guys can come up with for these parties. The food is absolutely delicious – we seriously look forward to the company that caters all year. They have bounce hours, a bonfire, a haunted hayride, games, and a costume contest with prizes.

As you can see, we had a unicorn, a pirate, and a french fry. Sullivan had planned to be the costume he picked out for this year – a hot dog – but he said he wanted to save it for Halloween night. We improvised with our pirate dress up jacket. We already owned Poppy’s dress and I ordered the unicorn hair clip earlier this summer.

I had high hopes for the costume contest. Poppy has won for the past 2 years, but this year she wasn’t the reigning champ. That went to a different pirate. Whomp whomp. She still looked adorable though!

I talked a little about this earlier this week, but one of our fall traditions is to go to Steed’s Dairy, a local farm. They have so much to do – a corn maze, jumping pillow, huge slides, hay ride, and more. It’s so much fun. We let the kids lead us in the corn maze and it took us about 15 minutes to get out, so it wasn’t too bad. I had to laugh because in the collage above you can see that Jason and I do a corn maze picture every year – it’s like a progression of us aging. Yikes!

I had all these plans to do fun themed food during the month of October, and all I managed was our Boo to You Halloween dinner. I did pull together some mummy dogs and zombie brains, and we did have a pumpkin roll I purchased from Publix I made from scratch. 😉 We carved our pumpkins (even Saylor is in the picture above!) but sadly, the haunted house cookie kit still hasn’t been touched. Maybe this weekend we will tackle that.

This past Saturday we went to Boo at the Zoo, which is another Halloween activity we try to make an annual tradition. Jason’s mom has been in town, so she went with us, and my mom and niece met us there. My niece is far too cool for photographs, but I promise she was there. Poppy was Princess Poppy from Trolls, Cooper was someone from Star Wars (his costume from last year), and the hot dog made an appearance! I tell you what, this hot dog was the hit of the zoo. We had people stopping to laugh all night.

Every year I go back and forth on if we will return the next year to the zoo. We love the zoo, but it is dark and the animals are for the most part asleep or have been moved out of their enclosures. It’s so crowded and they’ve moved away from giving candy and instead give little coloring/information cards. Our annual membership doesn’t cover this event, so I just don’t know that we will go next year. Remind me of my misgivings when I talk about my October plans next year!

This past Monday a local bakery had a story time event where they read a book, the kids decorated a cupcake, and they got a treat bag. Unfortunately we were 5 minutes late and missed the story, but Sully and Poppy did enjoy their cupcakes.

Poppy’s outfit was purchased last year in a Facebook wholesale/buy in group. It was way too big last year, so she didn’t wear it, but it fit perfectly this year. I’m saving it for future dress up!

Tuesday was Lily Moms, and they encouraged the children to dress up. I purchased this dress last spring before a certain movie came out. Can you guess what she is supposed to be? I should have had her hold a book.

Sullivan refused to be photographed, but he wore his fireman dress up coat you see above. He refused to wear the hat because he apparently really liked his hair that day. Ha!

Yesterday morning I woke up and started browsing through Facebook like I do pretty much every morning. The “On This Day” feature always gets me. This was the first year in 4 years that we haven’t dressed up in a family theme, and I was so sad! The boys are getting older and have opinions now, but I knew that I could easily put something together for Poppy and I to match on Halloween night. I borrowed some wings from my friend Wendy, attempted some artistic makeup, threw together what I thought looked like a fairy braid, and called it a day. I actually already had the skirt (it seemed like a good idea at the time) so I just pulled from things I already had.

The makeup involved lots of glitter, ha! Poppy’s costume had glitter on the dress and wings so there is glitter everywhere in our house and car.

Poppy’s costume is from Cracker Barrel (random, but they have the most gorgeous costumes!) and the boys’ costumes are from Target. Poppy’s dress actually has LED lights sewn into the skirt and it lights up.

We went to our church’s Fall Festival, and it was amazing. I’m so happy to be a part of a church who pours out its resources into the community. The church is located out in Appling, which is considered the country, and many who live there don’t have safe places or neighborhoods to trick or treat. They bring in bounce houses, games, petting zoos, pony rides, free food, popcorn, cotton candy… it really is HUGE and it made me tear up to see all the families there. It also made me greatly appreciate my church family, because it took a massive amount of people to volunteer: parking attendants, ride attendant, food lines, games, cooks… I was grateful to see so many church members show up to make this happen. Sometimes the comments I hear or read from non-believers or people who don’t attend church is that the church doesn’t serve… well, ours DOES and I’m so happy to be a part of it.

How was your Halloween? If you have children, did they dress up?

Five on Friday Halloween Edition!

Today I’m joining in for Five on Friday! Lots of random but fun things. Make sure you pop in on Christina and April if you want to partake of the fun.

ONE / Oh, the annual visit to the pumpkin patch. I look forward to these pictures all year. Cute, coordinated outfits, beautiful backdrops, sibling love….

And this is what you end up with. My children act as if the light of the sun scorches their eyeballs every single time we step foot outside. Poppy wouldn’t look, Cooper whined about how bright the sun was, and Sullivan just wasn’t happy with the world that day.

The pumpkin patch had this area set up so you could take photos – I have to admit to being a smidge irritated that this lady in the background would NOT move out of the frame. We stood there for awhile waiting for her to move, and she wasn’t budging, so every shot has her in the background. None of them were good anyway, so I guess it doesn’t matter, but… girl. Move your hiney when you see people using the designated spot for photos.

Rant over.

TWO / We were booed!

Our neighborhood isn’t the best at this sort of thing. I’m not sure why, so basically me and my neighbor just gift each other back and forth for every holiday. I have amazing neighbors, that’s for sure, but I wish my entire subdivision was more child friendly. (We actually have a house in the neighborhood who puts up signs on Halloween night saying no one is allowed to step on their lawn. Yep.)  I tried to boo all my surrounding neighbors the first year we lived here and it never went any further. Whomp whomp…

You can’t see them, but my neighbor included two boxes of Duncan Hines mug cake mix. For sure going to tear into that tonight!

THREE / Thoughts? For me it is that weird taffy-ish candy that comes in the orange, black, and tan wrappers. Tootsie Rolls and Sugar Daddies come in a close second.

Speaking of, are you a “buy really nice, brand name candy” person (Snickers, etc) or are you a “buy the cheap candy” person? I fall somewhere in the middle. I buy good candy and then I pad it out with Dum Dums and bubble gum. NO SHAME.


FOUR / Finally got myself together to have our annual Boo to You Halloween Dinner. We had mummy dogs, zombie brains, and some pumpkin shaped pasta with sauce. We did manage to carve our pumpkins but that Halloween house kit is still sitting in the box.

This is random but we call it Boo to You Halloween Dinner because years ago the Disney channel had a song that played all throughout October that went  – “ghosts and goblins, vampire bats, witches in their pointy hats, something something something something the best you’ve ever seen! Boo to You Halloween!”

No one remembers? Just me? Ok then.

FIVE / I am SUPER excited that Instagram live just released an Instastories update that allows you to go live with another person! Patricia is a long time friend of mine and we share a love of all things beauty. She is a professional makeup artist, Rodan & Fields representative, and she blogs over at Jacksonville Moms Blog. We are going to do an Instagram Live together next Thursday, November 2nd, at 10:00 a.m. Please tune in!

That’s all I’ve got for today! What’s plans do you have this weekend?

Copycat Starbucks Caramel Apple Spice

This is a post I originally published in 2016. I am re-posting with a homemade syrup recipe option if you don’t wish to purchase the Starbucks syrup!

One of my very favorite fall drinks at Starbucks is the Caramel Apple Spice. I’m not a huge Pumpkin Spice Latte fan – but a Caramel Apple Spice? Yes please. Something about this amazing blend of warm apple juice, caramel, and spicy goodness is heaven in a cup.

img_6759Here’s what you will need:

I purchased my Cinnamon Dolce Syrup at Starbucks for $13. You can walk into any store and they will sell you syrup if they have it on hand (they keep it in the back and not on the shelves). Here it is on Amazon but this is a liter and it costs $31. Unless you just love Cinnamon Dolce Syrup and will use up that giant bottle, I recommend buying in store. If you don’t have a Starbucks nearby, you can try Torani Brown Sugar Cinnamon Syrup, which is cheaper and is also available on Amazon. I’ve seen Torani at my local grocery store.


Another option is to make your own homemade syrup!

Homemade Cinnamon Dolce Syrup


  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1 cup brown sugar


  1. Add water and brown sugar to saucepan.
  2. Break up the cinnamon sticks into small pieces.
  3. Bring to a rapid boil, stirring constantly.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer. Continue to stir until water is no longer boiling.
  5. Simmer for 20 minutes, or until water has thickened into a syrup consistency.
  6. Store in a mason jar or other airtight container in the fridge.

So, what do you do with whatever syrup you use decide to use?


  1. Pour entire jug of apple juice or cider into the crockpot.
  2. Add 1 cup of Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce syrup.
  3. Cook on low for several hours.
  4. When you are ready to serve, pour in glass and top with whipped cream and caramel sauce!

Now you can certainly make this easier and heat mug by mug in the microwave. I recommend 2-3 tablespoons of syrup per large mug.

This really couldn’t be easier and it would be PERFECT for a fall gathering or party.

Let me know what you think if you make it!

Spooky Halloween Dinner

Y’all who know me know that I love any excuse to celebrate. I also love traditions. I love the looks on my children’s faces when I take the time to elevate a seemingly normal day into something special. It’s my hope that one day, when they recount their childhoods, they will look back and remember these days with fondness. I hope they continue these traditions with their children… and if not, no worries. Grandma will have it covered. Ha!

Every fall we have a Spooky Halloween Dinner.

I set the table with “spooky” decorations. I’ve got quite the stash going by now, so I don’t really *need* to buy anything, but my go-to spots for holiday decorations on the cheap at the Target Dollar Spot, the Christmas Tree Shop, the Dollar Tree, and Walmart.

I plan a menu. For the kids, simple is always best. Typically I include mummy dogs, zombie brains, pumpkins, jack o’lanterns, and some sweet treats.

Mummy Dogs

You will need a pack of hot dogs, ketchup, and a tube of crescent rolls. If you can find the sheet of crescent rolls, that will make less work for you. Simply roll out the crescent rolls and pinch two together to make a rectangle. Cut into strips (I use a pizza cutter). Then wrap the strips haphazardly around your (uncooked) hot dogs. Don’t be neat – loop over and around just like mummy wrappings. Place the hot dogs on a cookie sheet and cook according to the directions for the crescent rolls. Make eyes with ketchup.

Zombie Brains

These are cut frozen meatballs that I cook in the crockpot. The sauce is a jar of grape jelly and a bottle of chili sauce. (Don’t be scared of the chili sauce – it isn’t hot at all.) If you can’t find chili sauce or you don’t wish to use it, you can sub with a bottle of red BBQ sauce.

Jack O’Lanterns

I mean, this couldn’t be easier. I used boxed macaroni and cheese, served it in clear cups, and drew a jack o’lantern face on the front.


The pumpkins are mandarin oranges, peeled, with a small piece of celery used as the stem.


I don’t have a picture of the ghosts, but you can make these by peeling bananas and creating eyes and a mouth by sticking the pointed end of a chocolate chip into the banana.

Mummy pizzas are also an October stable in our house! You can customize the pizzas with whatever toppings you want, and you just create the mummy effect with mozzarella cheese cut into strips.

Mummy Pizzas

I use french bread as the base. Cut into half length-wise and cover with pizza sauce. Use whatever toppings you desire. You will need to use sliced mozzarella cheese that has been cut into strips. I alternate directions and place them diagonally on the bread. The eyes are just sliced olives. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes – make sure to watch these so they don’t burn.

My kids love tombstone puddings! I don’t make these every year, but I do when I can find the tombstones. They are just peeps! If you can’t find peeps, I’ve also used milano cookies and written on the cookies with icing.

Tombstone Pudding Cups

Use a clear cup, and fill with prepared pudding (either homemade or buy pre-made to make it even easier!). Crush up oreo cookies to use as dirt and place on top of the pudding. The tombstone is a Halloween peep I found at Target in the Halloween food section. Gummy worms provide a spooky finishing touch!

Our Spooky Halloween Dinner is typically when we carve pumpkins and/or decorate our Halloween gingerbread house. We actually haven’t yet had our Spooky Halloween dinner, but its on the schedule for this week. I’ll be sure to post pictures of this year’s dinner once we have it.

Tell me – do you have any Halloween traditions? I’d love to see your pictures if you decide to have a Spooky Halloween Dinner of your own!

Halloween Themed Food

As I said in yesterday’s post, I really can’t turn down an opportunity to turn an everyday occasion into a special occasion. I’ve learned with my family that it doesn’t have to be perfect or expensive to make something ordinary extraordinary! Themed food is an easy way to make a weeknight or weekend dinner fun.


For our Boo To You Halloween Dinner, I made quite a few Halloween themed food items.


Zombie meatballs – I used frozen meatballs and placed them in the slow cooker with a bottle of grape jelly and a bottle of chili sauce. These were delicious, and they were not spicy at all.

Pumpkins – these were just peeled mandarin oranges with celery sticks stuck in the center.

I made boxed mac and cheese and served them in clear cups with jack o lantern faces.

Monster rice crispy treats – I made rice crispy treats, and cut them out into rectangle shapes. I dipped the tops into colored chocolate and stuck on edible eyeballs.

Mummy dogs – These were made using crescent rolls. Roll out the crescent rolls so that it is a solid sheet (or buy the full sheet crescent rolls). I used a pizza cutter to cut the crescents into strips and just wrapped around the hot dogs. Create eyes with ketchup.

I also served my Copycat Starbucks Caramel Apple Spice.


Another night we had mummy pizzas – these are super easy as well! I use french bread as the dough, and I top with pizza sauce and whatever toppings my family desires. Instead of using shredded cheese, I used mozzarella slices that I again cut into strips with a pizza cutter. Black olives make great eyes.


Last year I made these fun pudding cups. I used clear cups and filled with chocolate pudding. Then I topped the pudding with crushed oreos, a tombstone peep, and gummy worms. If you cant find the tombstone peeps, you can make a tombstone using Milano cookies and icing.


Don’t forget school lunches can be themed too! I have a pumpkin, bat, and ghost cookie cutter that get heavy rotation during October.

For Halloween night, I always serve Buffalo Chicken Chili and cornbread, and I made this pumpkin cake that is to die for.

What have you been cooking this October?

Boo To You Halloween Dinner

If you know me well, you know it is no secret that I love celebrations. I love taking seemingly ordinary days and turning them into special parties for my kids. Life is too short not to grab a little fun when and where you can. Cooper in particular gets so excited about our celebrations which is why I continue to do it.

This year was our first annual Boo To You Halloween Dinner and I wanted to share in case you wanted to plan a Halloween dinner for your family! It isn’t too late and you probably have most of what you need already on hand.


First – decorations! I can’t throw any party without fun decorations. Thank goodness for Target’s one dollar spot, right?! The tablecloth, spiderweb chargers, tree and ornaments, pumpkins, and aliens are from Target. The plates are from Kroger.


Each child got a Halloween pajamas (except Cooper – he’s unfortunately out of child pajamas and into the big boy sizes now) and a Halloween book.

I themed our food as well.


We had pumpkin oranges, mac and cheese in jack o lantern cups, vampire doughnuts, monster rice crispy treats, zombie brains (meatballs), and mummy dogs. I also served my Copycat Starbucks Caramel Apple Spice to drink.

Do you do any special themed meals to celebrate Halloween? Share your ideas in the comments.

Check back tomorrow for recipes and more ideas for Halloween food!

How to Make a Spiral Mesh Wreath


I’m absolutely obsessed with mesh wreaths. I like big wreaths and I cannot lie; what can I say? I think mesh wreaths make such an impact on your door. I want people to see my wreath as they drive by my house!

I’ve been making traditional mesh wreaths for about 2 years, but recently I took a class at Carolina Pottery to learn how to make a spiral mesh wreath. It was so much easier than I thought, and I’m going to share a step by step tutorial with you today!

(In case you are a more visual person, I’ve got a quick video tutorial at the bottom of this post.)


Step One: Gather your supplies. You’ll need mesh, a wreath form, and embellishments if you chose to add them. I added ribbon and some patriotic accessories to my wreath.

You can just do one color wreath, but you’ll need to make some adjustments in your technique if you choose just one color. I talk about this in the video.

All the supplies for this wreath were $60;however , you can make two wreaths out of what you see above. The ribbon was what really made my total so expensive. The burlap ribbon was $10!

PicMonkey Collage

Step Two: Prepare your wreath form. Each grouping of wire is two pieces (keep that in mind for later). Right now you want to pinch the two pieces together and pull them straight up. Then, go around your wreath and count how many groups of wire you have. Most wreath forms have about 18 groups of wire.


Step Three: Arrange your mesh for cutting. To make this much easier, you will want to layer your mesh on top of one another. The white is on the bottom, then the red, and then the blue. Just make sure they line up at the very end.


Step Four: Cut your mesh. I use a piece of computer paper as my guide. Cut lengthwise. You can cut along the lines of the mesh if you are a perfectionist.


Step Five: Once you finish cutting, the mesh will curl up naturally. Set it to the side and cut 18 more times – one strip of mesh for every grouping of wire on your wreath form.


Step Six: Once you have all your strips of mesh cut, it is time to start putting your wreath together. Take one strip of mesh and fold it in half so that the ends meet. Cut the strip of mesh in half. Now you have two strips of mesh.

Step Seven: Take apart the three individual colors of mesh. Fold the mesh into a cylinder shape. Do this for all three colors.

Step Eight: Stack the three colors mesh on top of one another and pinch in the middle.

Step Nine: Remember how I told you to remember that each grouping of mesh was made up of two pieces of wire? Here’s where that comes into play. The mesh you have pinched together in Step Eight now will get secured on the wreath form with one piece of wire. Pull apart the two pieces of wire on the wreath form and secure the mesh using one piece of wire. Then you will go back and grab the other group of mesh – from the one strip you cut in half – and secure to the other piece of wire.


Step Ten: Pull apart the wire and fluff. Continue this process with all the strips of mesh, moving around the wreath until you have used all the mesh and all the wire on the wreath form.


Step Eleven: Here is your finished product, pre-embellishment! The whole process, from cutting to placing the mesh on the wreath, took about 2 hours.


Here is the wreath after I added my embellishments. I talk a little more about how to cut the ribbon and add the accessories in the video.

Here’s the video! I look a hot mess since I filmed at the end of the day. I had dinner on the stove and the kids were fussing, so excuse my appearance and the mess of my kitchen.


  • Wear casual clothes when you make the wreath. The mesh catches on your clothes.
  • Place a tablecloth or sheet on your table if it scratches easily.
  • This is a messy process! Do it somewhere that is easy to vacuum or sweep.
  • When you secure your mesh to your wreath, only wrap the wire one time. Leave the excess wire in case you want to add ribbon or accessories. You can use the excess wire for that purpose.

If you have any questions, please let me know!

Patriotic Crafts for Kids


Yesterday Cooper followed me around the house for the better part of an hour while I was cleaning. “I’m bored!” he chanted over and over. Bored? The kid has a playroom full of toys, for pete’s sake! While the baby was napping, I quickly consulted Pinterest and came up with some patriotic crafts we could do before lunch. Both of these are quick, easy, and you probably have most of the materials on hand.


Cooper is still too young to take part in our annual fireworks explosion on the 4th of July. I thought these Fireworks in a Bottle were a cute substitute. He and Sullivan can shake them to their hearts content while the adults handle the explosives!

Directions: Remove the label from an empty water bottle. Fill the bottle with whatever red, white, and blue you have on hand. I used curling ribbon, red and white glitter, and buttons. You can also use pom poms, pipe cleaners, beans, rocks… be creative and see what you have on hand! Fill the bottle with water and secure the top with hot glue. You could also use baby oil (which will help the glitter stay suspended longer than the water will) but to me that was just a disaster waiting to happen.


For the next craft, I taped down some craft paper and let Cooper paint some blue construction paper with red and white paint.


Once the paint dried, I secured the paper into a cylinder shape with adhesive. I used streamers on the bottom, and the loop to secure the windsock is made from streamers as well. This Patriotic Wind Sock was super easy and my son was super excited to see it blowing in the wind all day!

Have you been doing any patriotic crafts to prepare for the 4th of July?

Kid-Made Father’s Day Gifts

Today’s post could be alternately titled Pinterest Fail. Or When Kids Make Something It Doesn’t Look Perfect. In truth I debated whether or not to post my own kid-made gifts, mainly because it didn’t look exactly like the Pinterest perfect images that I got inspiration from. Then I realized how hypocritical that would truly be. Listen, my life is not perfect. My house is not always clean and my kids are not always well behaved. I’d be doing a great disservice to my readers if the only thing I ever showed you was my so-called “perfect” life. Life isn’t perfect. It’s messy and chaotic and CRAZY.

Something I’m really trying to focus on is that true joy comes from finding beauty in imperfection. I hope that is one thing you take away from my posts… I’m am imperfect. I am flawed. I cannot do it all. But I love my kids and I try my hardest and in the end that is enough. These Father’s Day gifts? They may not be pinned a million times. You may look at them and think “Wow… that is not cute.” But my husband will love them because they were made in love, and that’s what matters.


This apron was a fun project, and wasn’t too difficult or expensive to make. All of the supplies were purchased from Michael’s (and I used a coupon). You’ll need an apron, paint, paintbrush, and possibly a stencil or paint pen if you want to include some sort of phrase or message.


The apron could have turned out so much cuter, but the mistakes were all user error (i.e. mine). I made a stencil using Microsoft Word and card stock for the lettering. I laid down the stencil on the apron and filled in with paint (puff paint, remember that?!). The problem is that I got distracted by a wildebeest running around with an open container of paint in my house, and by the time I wrestled back control of the paint and cleaned up the ensuing mess the paint had dried… with the stencil still on top. The white you see if little bits of paper that stuck as I pulled off the stencil. I’m hoping it will come off when I wash it. I was also cheap and bought $1 clearance paint for the hand prints and the paint was very liquid-y. I had to get the preschooler to stamp his hand twice for the color to show up. I didn’t even attempt this with the baby because…. well, I already needed a Xanax and I didn’t want to torture myself more.

Bottom line: use a fabric paint pen instead of a stencil and buy better quality paint.

Source (this is one of those pins that leads nowhere, but I did get the inspiration from Pinterest)


While I was browsing around Michael’s, I stumbled upon a stepping stone kit and thought that would be a fun project and gift for Dad. We’ve been doing a lot of work to our backyard and I thought it would be a meaningful present for Cooper to give to Jason. This is the kit I purchased and it makes 2 stones. It contains everything you need: mold, stone mix, tools, jewels, paint, etc. The decorations were easy and we completed the project in less than 20 minutes. The only tip I have is that the directions tell you to pour the mix and add the water directly in the mold – the mold is shallow and this makes a huge mess. I think if I did this again I would use a throwaway container and then pour into the mold.


This is what Cooper will be giving his Papa, along with a ticket to a baseball game. My dad loves to snack on peanuts when he is watching sports, so I thought this would be a cute, easy, and inexpensive gift. The tag was downloaded from Don’t Waste The Crumbs.


We will also be filling out this Father’s Day questionnaire from Family Spice. Click on the link for a downloadable PDF.

For more gift ideas, check out our Father’s Day Pinterest board!