Monday Fave Rave: Back to School 2016

Hallelujah it's back to school time! Today B starts his first day at a new preschool and my nerves are shot already.  He's not a huge fan of change or new situations and gets anxiety at drop-off even if he is comfortable with his surroundings so today is a big day for both of us. I will try not to cry too much.  As always, I want to share some of our must haves for school and let you all know how I prepare for Back-to-School as a single Jedi parent of a young Padawan in training.

I like to lay all of his stuff out after he falls asleep and make it a surprise when he wakes up.  It gets him excited and motivated to put it all on and get ready for the day.  THis worked so well this morning.  He had no anxiety at all, didn't fuss over getting dressed or leaving the house.  I was also able to snap off a few cute pics to share.

Here's a list of our must have items for school:

1. Name Bubbles for labeling everything...and I mean everything we send or wear to school.  It's way easier than labeling with a sharpie like my parents did or losing uber cool items to the lost-and-found bin.  I keep the clothes labels in his drawers so I can just pop one on to his shirts and shorts when we lay clothes out for the day.

2. Shoes! We buy two new pairs of shoes at the beginning of each school year.  I typically let B pick his out, too.  In the past we have been a huge fan of Stride Rite. They are great for  early preschoolers.  This year we chose to go with a more athletic shoe from Nike.  I know it can be very pricy to buy name brands but try shopping at Shoe Carnival or Famous Footwear for discounts.  (Also, the Name Bubble mentioned above have shoe labels! Sweet!)

3. Clothes: Well of course my child will basically only wear clothes with his favorite characters on them, including his underwear.  Ugh.  I have found great success with Hanna Andersson for everything from socks and undies to back packs.  Their shorts and pants are amazing! Thanks to European sizing and attention to detail their clothes will last forever.  Organic material, adjustable, washable and durable...all of the things you're looking for when's you spend good money on school clothes.  (Check out the PJs cute!) I like to have him help me pick his clothes out the night before and lay them out for him to see.  It makes getting dressed in the morning a lot faster and he feels more confident when he picks the outfit.

4. Lunches: We have a variety of lunch boxes from Thermos.  I like to switch it up. Because my little guys is more of a snack eater I pack a selection of little things for him to pick and choose from.  Typically he will eat most of what I pack.  Hummus, yogurt, and cheese are good protein options along with a fruit (he likes apple slices, strawberries or grapes) in these cool camp tins from PB Kids.  I alway include a juice and a surprise treat like nut free cookies, gummie bunnies, organic chocolate cookies, Yummy Earth treat for fun.  Add a cute little Star Wars note to make his day or a sticker to keep him smiling. I prepack lunch boxes as soon as we get home from school.  It helps me just stay on top of that task and I am not scrambling to pack it all in the morning.

5. Nap Mat: This is our first time having to bring a nap mat to school.  He's not a napper so...good luck with that, teacher.  Getting B to take a nap is like getting anything done with a toddler at home...nearly impossible.  I decided to go the discount route when purchasing the nap mat for fear that he may not use it and it will end up a wasted chunk of change. Zulily  had really cute Robot nap mat by Olive Kids that we are going to try out.  Kiddo has already been laying it out on the floor and reading books on it so maybe it will work for quiet time at school.  Fingers Crossed.

6. And last but not least a cool back to school Star Wars themed printable for uber cute pics!

So, there you have it.  Our MLR Back to School list for 2016.  Wish us luck on our new journey at a new school. We are very excited to be attending Bright Horizons this school year.  I was pretty impressed with the tour of the facility, the teachers all seemed really great and they plan a full day of learning from my little preschooler.

Good luck to all you parents braving the back-to-school crazy this week!

Just remember...


Mom Purse: WTF is in there?

Let me just preface this by saying that I hate wearing a purse.  In my former life I would never wear a purse.  Cash and keys in pocket and out the door.  Now, with a child, I'm just proud I'm not leaving the house without luggage.  So while I was walking around the grocery store the other day and realized...this purse is heavy as F%$#! Then I stuck my hand in there..."WTF is in here?!?" In an effort to be as transparent as possible here's what I found in there after I removed the 47 crinkled up receipts and about a dozen expired coupons: sunglasses (severely scratched so thank good they're cheapos from the drugstore), Disney passes, 14 pounds of loose change, enough singles to make a stripper jealous, 4 tubes of lip balm and 2 shades of lip gloss that I NEVER wear, a beer ticket (you know, just in case), some Boogie Wipes (because I have used a sleeve in the past and thought that maybe that was my "rock bottom"), hand sanitizer, hair ties for pulling up my barely brushed tresses, a lollipop stick (that was still wet), my hard case wallet that holds my debit card, Costco membership card (hallelujah) and my variety of discount cards for ice cream, cupcakes and coffees from around town and the piece de resistance...hidden in one of the pockets was a unwrapped and unused (obviously) tampon that I found Boo swinging around by the string one day in the middle of Target (not're welcome.) Feel free to share what's in your purse because we all know it's a disaster in there.




Monday Fave Rave: Tis The Season

Tis the season for frantic shopping, assembling, wrapping, and stashing all of those gifts for the kiddies. But what about the adults? You know, the ones that wipe noses and asses, that run the errands and cook and clean, are up all hours of the night and rise with the sun to face the day head on…yeah, those people. Don't forget to get something special for the ones who do all the work and expect nothing in return.  I have a great little list of local places to stop in and find something for the parental units on your gift giving list this year that caters to every style.

  1. Got Karma? Major karma points for stopping in this unique and zen boutique to grab a great gift to keep the qi flowing.  Perfect for your hippy momma gal pals.
  2. Retromended is the perfect place for your throwback kings and queens.  I can always find the perfect accessory for my Mom Uniform.
  3. Rocket Fizz  is the perfect place to put together a special gift for your favorite sugar addict.  They have everything you could think of all in one awesome place that will bring you back to the old school days.
  4. The Lovely is a a beautifully put together boutique market that brings together both locally made artisan crafts and impeccably selected vintage finds brought to you by local entrepreneurs.  You will find something for everyone and probably some stuff for you too.
  5. Etoile Boutique has some of the coolest and one of a kind creations you will find in Orlando…or anywhere.  You can always walk out of this place with something special.

Try to remember to shop local this season.  You won't be disappointed and neither will your friends and family!


Good Luck!

-W and Boo



Monday Fave Rave: Target Obsessed

Anyone who knows me know that I am totally TO (Target Obsessed.)  It's my happy place. A place I like to escape to while kiddo is in preschool.  I swear I could walk around in that red palace of impedimenta for days.  It's also just super convenient that they sell all of my favorite brands these days.  For busy parents with a multitude of tasks to juggle, we can all appreciate a one-stop-shop.  This also happens to be Boo's first choice in bigger retail stores too. I don't know about you guys but I'm kind of picky about what I feed Boo, use on our skin, or purchase for the home.  I try to go for the most organic, GMO free, artificial additive free, all natural as I can, when I can.

Heres my list of Target must haves:

  1. Annie's Organics everything.  From soup to snacks this brand is a go to for us and we can usually find our necessities on sale.  that's awesome since my picky eater goes through about 6 cans of Bunnies a week.
  2. Zarbees.  Holy crap, I love this brand!! Finding supplements and all natural meds for children is not an easy task.  Other brands on the market are homeopathic and give my son an adverse reaction at times.  Once I discovered this brands I fell in love.  Adults won't miss out either.  Personally, I can't take many OTC meds, but this stuff helps me feel a lot better when the germs get the best of me.
  3. Nature's Wick candles and home scents are so awesome.  I am officially nuts for them.  I love the wood wicks and soy based wax.  No stinky chemical doers when you blow them out and their unique scents, like bonfire nights, keep my whole house feeling all warm and cozy, even with stinky kids and a smelly dog running around from time to time.
  4. Pacifica is a great brand, but I specifically love these makeup remover cloths are super luxurious feeling and smell fantastic.  Keep these in your gym bag or purse and they are safe to use on the kids, too.  Trust me.
  5. Imaginext are the greatest toys ever.  I recently stumbled upon these for my 2.75 year old.  They are perfect.  Fisher Price hit right on the money with cool characters and infinite possibilities to encourage your little one's imagination and story making skills.  We have probably a million of these because I buy one to two "mystery packs" per trip.

Next time your in Target check these out and please let me know if there is a "must have" that you guys are obsessed with, too.  I am always down to try new brands.

Next week look for my have rave on local Orlando shops for all of your gift giving needs!!!!