Activities

Happy New Year.

Each year in January I like to do what I call “Sarah’s Life Edit”.  I try to edit and declutter all aspects of my life:  finances, kitchen, closets, kids stuff, etc.

I like to start with finances since coming from December where there was an excess of spending, parties taxes due, tuition, etc.  So here are some simple ways I edit my finances in January.

Finances:
1.  Cash only in January.   I make saving a game with myself.  I take 1/4 of my normal variable expenses out in cash and this forces me to get creative, plan ahead and be resourceful.

2.  Print a calendar and write down expenses each day.  If you know ahead of time pre-track your expenses.  I like to use the calendar as a visual and challenge myself to stick to my budget.  Add up all your expenses at the end of the week to make sure you’re on track.

3.  Gather all unused gift cards.  Separate into categories:  Retail, Restaurants, and Entertainment.  Plan shopping dinners out and activities around your gift cards.

4.  See if your credit cards have cash back rewards programs.  My credit card gives you an additional 50% bonus if you get the cash bonus deposited back into your account.  No Brainer!

5.  Sign your kids up for a kids club checking account (First Community Credit Union-has one my boys love).  My boys got some money for Christmas and when they deposit up to $250 a year they get a $10 gift card.

 

 

Dierbergs Holiday Appetizers and Cocktails Class

I’m always looking for new and fun experiences.  So when Dierbergs invited me to one of their “pop up” cooking classes, I was thrilled.  This particular class was for holiday appetizers and cocktails, which is right down my alley.  I’ve been to some classes recently for a girls-night-out and work team-building activity, and each time picked up something new.  

Dierbergs offers some of their more popular classes as “pop up”, or last minute, so make sure you follow them on social media.  Their Instagram handle is @Dierbergs, or sign up for their newsletter here so you don’t miss anything.  They do fill up quickly.  

If you’re looking for a unique gift for someone celebrating an anniversary or birthday, these classes would be something interactive and fun.

Dierbergs holiday appetizer and jim beam cocktail class

Here was the menu:  

  • Seared Tuna Skewers and Spicy Avocado Cream & Pickled Cucumber
  • Sun-dried Tomato & Mozzarella Bread Sticks with Olive Caper Cream
  • Candied Bacon Cornbread bits glazed with Sweet Tomato Jam
  • Chocolate Caramel Mousse Cups with Candied Pecans

This class was a demonstration with Chef Christie Maggi.  In demonstration classes, you get to sit back and relax while the chef does all the work.  

What we ate:
While Chef Christie was starting to cook, she passed around a couple of apps from the store for us to sample.  We had a festive olive and salami tray along with a cranberry pecan torte you can pick up from the deli, which makes for a quick party-pleaser.  

Salami and olive tray

torteRecipes and a couple tips Chef discussed.

Seared Tuna Skewers and Spicy Avocado Cream & Pickled Cucumber

This was my favorite appetizer of the night.  Chef Christie had a great tip about working with food on skewers.  Instead of soaking the food on the skewers, she recommended cooking the tuna first, then add the skewer after.  This prevents the skewers from burning and falling apart. 

Seared tuna skewers

Avocado substitution option: if the avocados you were planning on using aren’t ripe, you can substitute with Wholly Guacamole.  

Lemongrass substitution option: use lemongrass puree in the squeeze tube.  

Candied Bacon Cornbread Bits glazed with sweet tomato onion jam

Candied bacon cornbread bits glazed with sweet tomato onion jam

Sarah’s Scoop: These would be great served at a brunch or holiday appetizer party.  The tomato jam is what transforms this from good into an amazing item!


Sun-dried tomato & mozzarella breadsticks with olive caper cream

Sun-dried Tomato & Mozzarella Bread Sticks with Olive Caper Cream

sun-dried tomato breadsticks

Sarah’s Scoop:  If you don’t want to make the dough from scratch, Dierbergs sells pre-made pizza dough in the same aisle where fresh pasta is made.

Chocolate Caramel Mousse Cups with Candied Pecans

Filo cups are very versatile, so pick some up in the deli department.  I love using them for holiday appetizers too (see how I did for my holiday appetizer party here) but using them for desserts is equally delicious.  

Chocolate caramel mousse cups with candied pecans

Chef’s Tip:  This mousse can be made a day or two ahead of time.  A snazzy serving option is putting them in a shot glass with berries on top, or use a martini glass for a larger portion.  

Chocolate caramel mousse cups with candied pecans

 Jim Beam Cocktails

Jim Beam Side Car

Here’s what Stephen, the Jim Beam rep, made for us to sample.

  1. Moscow Mule
  2. Sidecar
  3. Manhattan
  4. Penicillin
  5. Maker’s neat

Up until this point, I hadn’t drank any whiskey since I was in college, so I didn’t know what to expect.  The Moscow Mule is definitely something I would serve at one of my own parties for my girlfriends.  My friend Jana recently served it at her house, and she threw in some cranberry to make it festive for the holidays.  These drinks ranged from light whiskey taste too very strong.  Penicillin and Maker’s Neat are more for whiskey lovers that enjoy the taste.  There were several whiskey enthusiasts in the class, that really enjoyed these cocktails.  The cocktail size was quite large, more than just a sip, so you really got to enjoy it.

This class truly had something for everyone, including dessert.  So, do you prefer to savor a rich decadent chocolate mousse or sip on a warm whiskey at the end of your meal?

Maker's neat and chocolate carmel mousse cups with candied pecans

Jim Beam cocktail recipes

Overall this class was a lot of fun, with a lot of pleasant surprises and fun people willing to learn.  Many attendees were celebrating a special occasion or having a fun night with friends. One couple in the class said they were hosting a lot of guests for the holidays, and wanted to gather some ideas.  They love to go shopping right after the class so they picked up the ingredients of the apps and drinks they liked the best.  Very smart.  Thanks to Dierbergs for such a fun experience.  

Did you know Dierbergs has classes for all tastes and preferences?  Even if you are not a cook.   Check out their list of options for January and February here.  Here are some I’d like to attend:

New Year, New You
Make it- Take it Valentine Spa-tacular non-food class.
Friday Night Dine:  Classy Appetizers and Craft Cocktails (super popular)
Gal-entine’s Brunch
Crock Pot or Not (for those who can’t live without their crock pot)
Puppy Love, Parent-Child Kids Class (My boys love helping me in the kitchen)

Dierbergs is so much more than fresh groceries, my boys love it too. 

We thoroughly enjoy their children holiday events.  We recently saw Santa and did fun kid activities around the entire store; such as sampling foods, getting balloons, face painting, and making ornaments.  It was a win-win for everyone.  

Dierbergs Santa fair

Dierbergs Santa Fair

Dierbergs Santa Fair

Also, I hosted a pumpkin beer and treat tasting with friends this past fall, where I picked up some pumpkin beer and snacks for my girlfriends to enjoy.  If you’re looking for a great place to host, but don’t have the time to do it at your place, this is a perfect solution.  They even have live bands every Friday to make for a really festive atmosphere.  Read all about it here.

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Swag Bag Party Photo Wall

I have always loved taking and having lots of photos so when I was planning my Holiday Swag Bag Party I knew I wanted to do some sort of fun photo wall.

I have an accent wall in my office that is a leopard pattern so I thought I’d start with that.  I rented a “pipe and drape” (poles and drapes) at a party rental store that defines the space a little more for the background.  Then I pushed aside the furniture in my office.

I found some fun photo props at TJ Maxx and got the letter balloons to spell out FUN.  The day before the party I took the balloons to my local grocery and had them filled with helium.  Then Wal-la!  A photo backdrop.

I have loved looking back at these photos.  Life is too short not to have FUN!!  🙂

FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party FUN photo wall Swag bag party

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fun Photo Wall Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and Aboutpics were taken by @verajeanaephotography

Have you seen the other Holiday Swag Bag posts?

How to host a holiday swag bag party here
Holiday appetizers and drinks I served at the holiday swag bag party here

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I was tagged by @Kaitlinclaywell to share my answers to 15 winter related questions.  I absolutely loved reading Kaitlin’s questions and answers.  She is so happy and fun and lives life to the fullest.  I love following Kaitlin’s blog because you never know where she’ll pop up that week  major benefits of being able to work anywhere on the planet.  So I thought this would be fun.  

I absolutely love the holidays but I don’t like winter.  While holidays can be stressful, I thrive during this time.  I enjoy fun activities with my boys, parties, food and drinks, shopping, checking out Christmas lights, and much more.  Because I get so much enjoyment from the holidays, it’s no surprise I go into an activity slump in January.  

  1. What’s your favorite holiday tradition?  

Our favorite tradition, which has been around since my oldest son was little, is our “Elf on the Shelf” who’s name is Chip.  I sometimes wish he would be around the house all year, because the boys behave knowing Chip is watching and reporting to Santa.  The only downside to Chip, is remembering to move him to a different location around the house each night after the boys go to bed.     

Elf on the shelf trouble

  1. What is your favorite go-to lippies?

A makeup artist at Nordstrom told me red lips were big this winter, so I wear a subtle Bobbi Brown shade called Cranberry.  Besides lip stick,  Burt’s Bees’ lip balm is amazing.  Several of my friends gave it out at my swag bag party in November, and it was very popular, so I’ve started using it.  

  1. What is your favorite winter scent? (perfume, candles, etc.)

My favorite winter smell is pine greenery and Christmas trees.  

To wear I prefer sweet perfumes like Viva la Juicy and Daisy by Marc Jacobs.  

  1. What’s your go-to winter fashion trend?

My style is classic, but I try to incorporate leopard, sequins, fur, leather and lace when possible.

Leopard coat and denim

  1. What is your favorite holiday movie?

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.  We watched it recently for our family movie night, and my boys are now obsessed with it.

  1. What’s your favorite holiday tune?

All I want for Christmas is You by Mariah Carey.

  1. Do you prefer to travel or stay home?

I enjoy both, but if I had to choose, being home Christmas morning is so fun.  Some of my family live out of town, in Cape Girardeau but not too far away, so it’s easy to travel and join in on all the festivities.

  1. What’s your winter skincare must have?

Without a doubt, moisturizer.  My dermatologist says the best thing for your skin is moisturizer, sunscreen and retinol, so I never forgot to stay moisturized during the cold months.  I use Aveeno

  1. What is your favorite winter haircare product?

I really don’t have a favorite haircare product, but I love wearing stylish hats.  I’m in and out of buildings all day for work, so it’s easier for me to throw on a hat and still look put together.  (@NeverEnough)

Never Enough

  1. What is your favorite winter activity?

Looking at Christmas lights, especially ones that have pulled out all of the stops.  Two winter activities I’m hoping to do this year is tubing at Hidden Valley and sledding at Art Hill.  

  1. What is your favorite winter beauty product?  

I always feel better when I have a tan but I don’t want to damage my skin so, I use L’oreal’s Sublime Bronze towelettes  during the winter to get a little glow.  

  1. Love or hate the snow?

I love snow once a year.  I prefer just a dusting, because I don’t like driving in a lot of it; especially when I’m  “white-knuckling” and I hate being cold.  

  1. What is one item on your wishlist?

Having two busy-body boys, a full-night’s sleep would be tremendous.

  1. Favorite holiday treat?

I can’t pass up an Oreo cookie truffle ball.  The problem for me, is limiting myself to just one.  So, when I do eat one of these tasty treats, I savor it.

  1. Do you finish your holiday shopping before December or are you a last minute shopper?

I start early, but I always have some last minute things to grab too.  

It has been fun reflecting on why I love the holidays so much. I love reading these kinds of posts because I feel like I get to know my favorite bloggers better. If you do this tag, be sure to let me know! I want to learn more about you all. I’m tagging some amazing St. Louis mom bloggers below that I’m obsessed with. Be sure to check out their answers.  

Katelyn @thebejuledlife

Emily @emmyloustyles

Jen @andhattiemakesthree

Meghan @meghan.lane

Happy Holidays and thanks to @@Kaitlinclaywell

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How to throw a swag bag party and all my tips.

This is the hottest girls night out idea and perfect for the holidays.  You don’t need to be a celebrity or a blogger to get a great swag bag.  You just need to host a FUN filled holiday swag bag party and I’ll tell you how.  Swag bag party | Sarah Out and About

  1.  Invite your friends.  The swag bag party is a modern twist on the favorite things party.  The same premise applies.  Set a budget,  mine was $5.  I let my friends decide how much they wanted to spend but if you bring 4 items (spend $20) you take home 4 new items in your swag bag.  If you bring 6 items (spend $30) you take home six new swag bag items.

Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and About

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  When the girls arrived I had them put the swag on my dining room table and asked each of them to write their name on a piece of paper for each item they brought.  So if they brought 4 items they wrote their name down 4 times.  Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and About

3.  After eating, drinking and taking lots of FUN photos (blog posts on all those details to come) we started the swag bag game.  Here’s how it works:  Each person talks about their swag, why they love it, where they use it, etc.  Then they tell everyone where they can get it and depending on how many items they brought they draw names and those people get to take home the swag.

I also handed out a swag bag to each guest to put all of their goodies in.

Holiday wrapping tip:  My friend Jessica gave me this idea.  She gets the Erin Condren labels personalized and buys the brown or white paper bags then coordinates the label with the tissue.  This makes a custom and super affordable gift bag for the holidays.

 

Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and AboutIt is such a fun party and getting to hear what your friends are loving and hearing about new items you may not know about.  I had a friend write down each item so that if you didn’t get swag you were interested in you can check it out later.

 

These items are all great stocking stuffers, teacher gifts, gifts for your BFF, sister, mom, friends, etc. Who doesn’t want a swag bag?

Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and About

Swag Bag Party | Sarah Out and AboutSwag Bag Party | Sarah Out and About

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is a list of all of the swag bag items brought to the party

Gold Bond Hand Lotion Target

Silicone wine glasses Amazon

Mini gold wallet Old Navy

Bissinger’s gummy pandas Bissinger’s

Woodsy Owl Ornament Cracker Barrel

Hand Made Holiday Soaps Christopher’s boutique

Aveda Foot Lotion Ginger Bay Salon

Burt’s Bees Lip Balm Target

NYX Lip Moisturizer Target

Plaid Blanket Scarves Online

Silver Arrow Earrings Zulilly

Buntlett Cakes Nothing Bundt Cakes

JR Watkins Hand Soap and Yogi Chai tea Target

Fingerless gloves Old Navy

Wet Brush Target

Burt’s Bees Lip Balm Target

Chapstick Total Hydration Target

Johnson & Johnson Travel items Target Aveno Lotion, Neutrogena make up remover, Listerine, Lavender Bath, Neutrogena hand cream

Ok so tell me what you would bring if you went to a swag bag party.  I want to know all the fun things you love!

XOXO  Sarah

Photography by:  @verajeanaephotography

 

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Grade School

 

This is the ultimate gift guide for grade school kids age 5-10.  Here’s the Scoop:   I talked with Logan’s teachers and my friends who teach grade school and they gave me the best ideas of fun activities and games they use at school that the kids LOVE.  The holidays will be here before you know it and your kids will be making a laundry list of things they want.  If you’re tired of your kids getting junk that they don’t play with the day after Christmas you have come to the right place.

Forward this gift guide to the grandparents, aunts, uncles, anyone who wants to know what your child wants for Christmas.  Everyone will feel good about giving your kiddos something fun that will also stimulate their mind over the long Christmas break.  

 

This gift guide is organized for recommendations I got for kids age 5-10.  

1. Playstix

Playstix, the toy that inspires kids to build extraordinary things.  Playstix have grooves that interlock and they are color-coded to make building easy.  Kit Includes Playsitx and idea booklet with instructions and examples of things you can build.  

 

 2. Magna Tiles

Are you a quick-thinker, have a good eye, or just always seem to get the luck of the draw? This brain-bending game can be played three different ways, making it great for all types of kids. Each player tries to recreate the card pattern drawn using their set of 16 cubes. Each level will offer a new challenge, as you race to get your ‘bitz in order! A great game for sleepovers or family night.

 

9. Kinetic Sand

It’s more fun when it’s Wacky! Kinetic Sand is the squeezable sand where you can FEEL the fun! You’ve seen it before, but you’ve never felt anything like it! Pack it, pull it, shape it and love it, Kinetic Sand is so incredible you can’t put it down. It’s kinetic – meaning it sticks to itself and not to you! It oozes, moves and melts right before your eyes. It flows through your fingers like a slow-moving liquid, but leaves them completely dry. Kinetic Sand stimulates children’s creative skills allowing them to create anything they can imagine over and over again. Kinetic Sand never dries out and is gluten free. This soft and stretchy sand easily cleans up while delivering non-stop fun! It’s squeezable sand you can’t put down. Feel the difference with Kinetic Sand!

 

10. Pattern Play 3D 

Using brightly colored, multi-shaped wooden blocks, the goal is to turn 2D images into 3D structures. Some build-outs seem to defy gravity; others are stunning works of dimensional art. All puzzles will challenge kids and adults while providing a rewarding, towering finish! Includes 22 high-quality wooden blocks, 20 cards with 40 puzzles to solve and a 9-inch square wood tray.

 

11. Legos 

The great thing about Legos is not only are they great to keep your kids occupied and help with following directions and building but depending on what your child in into they have so many themes and options.  These will be huge in our house this Christmas.  
Create your own LEGO® vehicles with LEGO Classic! The LEGO® Classic Medium Creative Brick Box inspires open-ended building play and vehicle creation in a wide range of colors. Designed for builders of all ages in mind, this collection of LEGO® bricks in 35 different colors will encourage open-ended building play, and inspire any imagination. Windows, eyes, and lots and lots of wheels add to the fun and offer endless possibilities for creative construction and vehicle play. A great supplement set to any existing LEGO collection, this set comes in a convenient plastic storage box and includes ideas to get the building started.

 

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The O’Fallon Brewery pumpkin pack is one of my favorite treats when it hits the shelf at Dierbergs during the fall season.  These tasty brews will have you looking forward to autumn every year.  The popularity of the O’Fallon Pumpkin Pack is so high though, they fly off the shelves shortly after being stocked.  Last year I could not find it anywhere.  This year I decided to plan ahead reserve a Pumpkin pack and and host a pumpkin beer tasting party because there’s nothing like enjoying the Fall season with your girlfriends.      

How to host a pumpkin beer tasting party  

  • Set a date
  • Find a venue
  • Contact the venue
  • Think about food and drinks
  • Have an activity 
Pumpkin_Beer
O’Fallon Brewery Pumpkin Pack

1. Set A Date:

Talk to your friends and see who is interested in attending and what dates and times work best.  I wanted to keep this group to between 6-10 people since I wasn’t having it at my house.  This makes it easier to talk to everyone too.   I decided 8:00 p.m. was a good time, I wanted to squeeze in a little quality time with my boys after work and have time to freshen up, before heading out.

Pumpkin Beer Tasting
Pumpkin Beer Tasting

2.  Find a venue:

Many times hosting at your house is the natural option.  If you’re like me, hosting a party at my house can be stressful after working all week.  Picking a neutral location can make it a lot more enjoyable because you won’t have to worry about getting your house picked up prior to your guests arriving, and cleanup is a snap.  The Dierbergs in Des Peres on Manchester Rd. was an ideal location for this party because it features a balcony area by the main entrance, they provide glassware, and every Friday night there’s a live band.  Plus, unlike at a restaurant, you won’t have to worry about how long your party runs and if you’re occupying much-needed tables during busy times.  Think outside the box when deciding on a venue.  It’s more important to get together than to have the perfect setting.   Some other options are  Park pavilions, Recreation facility, church hall, private rooms or alcoves at restaurants, your neighborhood clubhouse and coffee shops.

3.  Contact the venue and find out all the details.

It’s important to note any policies they might have, so you don’t have any snags once you arrive.

4.  Think about the food and drinks:

If you love cooking, making your own food items for the party is a great cost-saving approach.  However, I literally did one-stop-shopping at Dierbergs for my food and drinks.  The beer was not the only item that was pumpkin themed  here is what I got:

  • O’Fallon Brewery Pumpkin Beer 12-pack, which included flavors like “Jack O’ Latte”, and “Pumpkin Bread”
  • Sweet bakery items: pumpkin gooey butter cake bites,  pumpkin cupcakes, and scones.  I asked Dierberg’s to put this together for me since I was sticking to a pumpkin theme.  They were easy to work with and charged me for the food and a few extra dollars for the platter so just ask them if you want something you don’t see.  

 

Pumpkin_platter_of_treats
Pumpkin_platter

5. Have an activity:  

I like to have some sort of activity or simple icebreaker, especially if your friends don’t all know each other already.  I thought  it would be fun to get my friends’ engaged in tasting each beer, so my husband created a pumpkin beer tasting sheet.  Then they can make comments and grade each flavor.  The results from my tasting had the classic O’Fallon Pumpkin Beer claiming the blue ribbon, and O’Fallon Jack O’ Latte was runner-up. 

The food winner was far-and-away pumpkin gooey butter cake bites, followed by pumpkin cupcakes.

So, what’s your favorite pumpkin-themed recipe?  Is it a scrumptious sweet item, savory entree, or are you a novice brewer who makes your own pumpkin beer?

Happy Fall everyone!

XOXO Sarah

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This week of Target Style is all about fun graphic T’s and my favorite “Boo your neighbor” tradition.  

It doesn’t have to be the holiday season to remind your kids to always have a giving spirit.  I like to find fun traditions throughout the year that reminds my two kiddos that you should always think of others.  As Halloween approaches, it’s the perfect time to “Boo” your neighbor.  While it’s about catching them off guard, it has everything to do with making them laugh instead of scream in fear.

Here are the steps on how to “boo”:  First, you’ll need a container.  A bucket works best because it provides for a better presentation of its contents.  Target or Dollar Tree will have a large selection of these.  

Next, it’s time to fill your bucket with goodies.  While kids try to get as much candy on Halloween, the items that go into your “Boo Bucket” don’t necessarily have to tame the sweet tooth.  I like to include stickers, games and other non-food items that will entertain them.  A good cost-saving strategy is to purchase your Boo supplies right after Halloween the year before because everything will be on sale.

 

Lastly, include a flyer that describes what it means to get “booed”, and what your neighbors need to do next.  They’re instructed to first put the “I’ve been booed” sign in on their door.  Next, they’ll need to boo two other neighbors.

Now it’s time to head out.  To get your kids excited, explain that this is a “top secret mission” and they must be super quiet as to make sure the neighbor doesn’t hear them.  Make sure to wear dark clothing so you’re not spotted, but take a good flashlight.

 

Get in a good viewing spot where you’re close to your target house, but also where you can’t be seen.  When the coast is clear, run to the door, ring the doorbell drop the bucket of treats and then take off as fast as you can back to your hiding spot.  Watch the door to see if someone opens it, and finds the Boo Bucket.  It’s fun to watch your neighbor’s reaction to such a fun surprise.  Repeat the process for your next neighbor.  

In the following days, your kids will be checking the door every hour to see if you were booed.  The best is when you’re home and get booed, and try to guess who was the sneaky neighbor.  

This is a sure-fire activity to get your kids even more excited about Halloween, and you’re also teaching them an important lesson about giving.

What are your favorite Halloween traditions?

 

 

Here is my Target Style outfit for the night and some similar options.  If you missed last week of Target style-Dark Denim Shirt or Target Style-Embroidered Military Jacket

Pumpkin spice graphic T

 

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Nashville girls trip Day 2

We started off with breakfast at Proper Bagel.  We ordered a trio of tasty toast and the must-have lavender honey iced latte.  You have to try it.

Proper-Bagel

Avacado Toast, Pruchetto and Fig, and Peaches and Cream with a honey lavender latte.  Bring it on.

Proper-Bagel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After fueling up we couldn’t wait to check out the 12 South neighborhood.  This place is a little piece of heaven.  Shops, Restaurants, Murals for photo ops and the cutest flower truck to take home a bouquet.

Amelia’s Flower Truck cruises around town but lucky for us the truck was at White’s Mercantile.  You can pick flower stems to create your own bouquet.

Amelias-Flower-Truck

 

 

 

 

 

Shop til we drop time.

Draper James is Reese Witherspoon’s boutique.  They have the sweetest southern style clothing and accessories.  The shop is pricey but it worth a trip into browse.  They even greet you with a sweet tea to enjoy while you shop.

Draper-James

Draper-James

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are so many fun murals and painted walls to get your photo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next door to Draper James is Sprinkles Cupcake ATM.  OMG, WHAT!!  This concept is genius.  I had to get a couple cupcakes for my boys.  I opted for the pumpkin and sprinkle cupcakes. They loved!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After shopping, photos and cupcakes we needed some pampering.  We had set appointments for blowouts at Parlor 3.  This salon is where Nashville celebs get their hair done.  The owner works with Carrie Underwood.  One of my favorite bloggers, Living with Landon always talks about Parlor 3.

My stylist was Derick.  He just moved to Nashville from LA and was so sweet.  He said it was his first job in a salon.  He had been working with celebs in LA and NYC doing celebrity events.  He was modest about the celebs he had worked with but on his IG account @derekpeterw, he has pics with Khloe Kardashian, Gweneth Paltrow, Whitney Everport,  Rebecca Romijin and tons of others.  I loved feeling like the celebs do for an afternoon.

 

 

 

 

 

Tip:  If you are in Nashville, go to Parlour 3 on Saturday.  They said Saturday is there slowest day but book in advance.  We had the best service and time.

After getting our hair done we were ready for a night out in Nashville.  The first stop was The Thompson Hotel.  They have a swanky rooftop bar called LA Jackson that overlooks the Gulch.  It was the perfect night.  We order some cocktails and an app and enjoyed the fresh air and Nashville glow.

LA-Jackson LA-Jackson LA-Jackson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LA-Jackson

 

 

 

 

 

Since we had our dancing shoes on, we headed to Broadway we went to Acme Feed and Seed.  This was a four-floor honkey tonk on Broadway.  Each floor had a totally different vibe.  We spent most of the night on the first floor listening to the live band, watching the bachelorette parties, and dancing.

Thankfully The Mariott Renaissance Nashville was a quick uber ride back.

Acme-Feed-And-Seed

 

Acme-Feed-And-Seed

 

 

 

 

 

Another amazing day in Nashville.  If you missed Girls Nashville Weekend Day 1 check it out.  Stay tuned for more Nashville excitement.  Are you ready to grab your girls and go?

The weather has cooled off in St Louis so I’m obsessed with getting my boys outside as much as possible.  Many nights we will take our dinner to a playground or park and enjoy the outside while we eat.  Being a working mom, I don’t have loads of time with my boys so I try to find ways to make our time together special without a lot of work.

Here’s what we do:

  1.  Keep a blanket, towel, even your yoga mats in your car so you can be spontaneous when you’re in the picnic mood.
  2. If packing food isn’t an option and you’re not in the mood for fast food, we like to get “grab and go” from The Art of Entertaining in Webster Groves.  They have healthy options my kids like too.  Mason is eating the Smart Start breakfast option which includes fruit, yogurt, and a popular mini muffin.
  3. One additional thing I like to do is use these fun kids conversation cards to generate interesting dialogue with my boys.  It helps keep topics off the bathroom which for some reason boys love to talk about.  🙁  LOL

Fill me in on how you like to picnic.  Have fun enjoying your quality outdoor time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On a side note, my boys LOVE dogs.  They want to pet every dog they see.  I was recently looking for some cute graphic T’s for a family photo and found these adorable options.

Puppy Applique T-shirtPuppy long sleeve optionRound towel for picnic | Art of Entertaining grab and go foods