Red and Green

Bryson’s favourite color is green and Skyler’s is red. It makes things easy because everything normally comes in these two colors so when we buy them new things, there is no arguing or questioning as to who get’s what. It also makes things fun this time of year! Today I got them a vanilla dip donut to split while I did some errands and the sprinkles are currently, of course, red and green. So it’s the best thing ever to them, that the store would do up the donuts in their favourite colors.

These adorable tops with the cutest elbow patches are from Os and Oakes and such a fun colorful addition to the twins fairly neutral wardrobe. They wear them all the time! It’s the perfect Christmas gift for any kiddo’s in your life you still need to buy for! You can gram one here! mnt_1013mnt_1001

Fun fact: See that tiny little birth mark under Skyler’s right eye?! That’s the only way most people can tell them apart!

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Thanks so much for reading! Happy Wednesday! xo

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Advent Calendar

I remember I was all excited to do an advent calendar for the twins when they were just a year old. They were much too young to know what was going on though and we maybe got to day 4 and then sort of gave up on the idea. Last year, we never got around to it, and this year as I wrote about here, we’re really wanting to simplify the season and not stress ourselves out with feeling like we have to do anything. But we also want to solidify some fun family christmas traditions and after brainstorming a list of simple activities (most of which don’t need any prep at all and alot of which I got from my good friend Sophie who is the queen of the advent calendar), we decided the advent calendar was something we were going to do this year. If we miss a day, or have to modify an activity, we’ll just roll with it.

Our calendar uses four supplies. So easy! You could throw it together tonight if you wanted to!

  • a stick
  • yarn
  • brown envelopes (from Michaels)
  • sticky advent numbers (from Michaels)

The idea is that the boys will open an envelope together each morning and there will be a written activity for them to do that day.

 

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Here’s what we came up with:

Dec 1 – Christmas P.J.s! and a tasty treat!

Dec. 2 – Make paper snowflakes

Dec. 3 – Get our Christmas tree and decorate it!

Dec. 4 – Holiday party with friends!

Dec. 5 – Making a blanket fort, to snuggle up with a flash light and christmas books

Dec. 6 – Make Marshmallow snowmen

Dec. 7 – Make a christmas paper garland

Dec 8 – baking gingerbread cookies

Dec. 9 – Christmas movie night and popcorn!

Dec. 10 – Visit Santa!

Dec. 11 – Make a paper nativity scene

Dec. 12 – make christmas cards for family and friends

Dec. 13 – Drive around and look at Christmas lights with hot chocolate.

Dec. 14 –  Make a christmas dough ornament.

Dec. 15 – Make a gingerbread house!

Dec. 16 – Christmas movie night and popcorn!

Dec. 17 – Family Christmas Party!

Dec. 18 – Bake christmas treats for neighbours and friends.

Dec. 19 – Make Christmas play-dough.

Dec. 20 – Walk through our downtown park to look at the lights!

Dec. 21 – Decorate a christmas tree for the animals.

Dec. 22 – Write a note of appreciation and draw a picture for a family member

Dec. 23 – Make reindeer food to sprinkle in the yard.

Dec. 24 – Make a birthday cake for Jesus.

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The Ara Satchel by Eve Cork

Being a work from home mama, I’ve been looking for a chic and stylish bag for quite some time now that would serve as a multi purpose work/purse/diaper bag. When my Ara Satchel from Eve Cork arrived in the mail last week, I was so excited to find it was just that!

Eve is a line of sustainably, eco-friendly cork handbags and fashion accessories that are ethically handmade with care in Portugal. Their products are made with the environment and greater well-being of our planet in mind, and that’s something I’m definitely proud to be a part of!

The twins have been potty trained since the spring which thankfully eliminates a ton of stuff that I need to lug around with me but I always like to have at least one change of clothes, as well as some multi purpose wipes, their sippy cups, and of course my typical purse contents (sunglasses, gum, wallet, cell phone etc.,)  On the mornings when the twins are in pre-school, I generally take my laptop to a coffee shop to hammer out e-mails or a blog post so I love that I can totally fit in there and not have to take out everything else or switch bags.

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The Eve Krypt wallet is lightweight and durable and has a magnetic snap closure, three bill compartments, twelve card holders, premium natural cork and a full zip coin compartment. I love it! mnt_0877mnt_0824-1mnt_0886

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There’s a ton of colors and styles to chose from on the Eve Cork site and a purse or wallet would make a great Christmas gift so head over and check em out!  Thanks so much for reading!

xo

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Artifact Uprising Christmas Cards

Our Christmas cards arrived this past week from Artifact Uprising and I couldn’t be happier with how they turned out! We had our photos printed on the Foil Stamped Merry Card and got to chose between gold, copper, or silver. We decided to go with Gold! They arrived in just a few days from the time we ordered them so if you’re a little late on ordering yours this year, you still have time! And the best part is that Artifact Uprising is offering 20% off today using code “VERYMERRY” at checkout so hurry and grab them on sale while you can.mnt_0907

We snapped these photos on Saturday morning while we were out doing our typical Saturday morning market and coffee run! Sky likes to pretend he’s drinking coffee…

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Thanks so much to Raw Footage Photography for the Christmas card photo!

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This Christmas is already becoming the best one yet. The twins are so excited for what’s to come and won’t stop talking about gingerbread houses, candy canes, ice skating and of course, Santa too! While this is our absolute favourite time of the year and there’s so much we want to do, Ron and I have been doing a lot of reflecting on what sort of traditions and things we want to implement now that the twins are old enough to know what’s going on. We want to keep the focus of Christmas on Jesus and giving to others while still allowing them to experience the magic of the season. And our biggest goal this Christmas is to simplify. To not get caught up in feeling like we have to attend every single event we’re invited to and cross everything off our Christmas bucket list. We’re keeping lots of open dates for spontaneous get togethers with friends and family, and for doing fun holiday activities, just the four of us, if we feel up to it. If not, we’ll just be right here in our jammies, sipping on coffee and hot chocolate, listening to good christmas tunes, maybe a little dancing, and that will be just fine. mnt_0964

Thanks for reading! xo

Natalie

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Chicago

We went to Chicago for my 30th. We had been wanting to visit this city for a while now and it’s really not that far from us at all so we booked a hotel, packed up the car and made a weekend out of it! Everyone thought we were a little crazy to take the twins with us but I wouldn’t have wanted it any differently. They get so excited for birthday’s and had known mine was coming up for a while now so I had to have them there celebrating with me. It was such a memorable weekend for all of us and I absolutely fell in love with this gorgeous city.

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We arrived at our hotel mid-afternoon on the Friday and we knew we’d be eating deep dish pizza for supper that evening, so we made our first stop Garret’s for a snack to tie us over. (If you’ve never tried Garret’s popcorn, you’ve never actually had popcorn people haha) I ordered the jumbo size thinking we’d finish it between the four of us but we barely got through a quarter of the bag! That stuff is GOOD but so greasy and heavy. Two handfuls and you’re stuffed. So that jumbo bag lasted us alllll weekend long. We were still snacking on it on the ride home.

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Since the twins had been sitting in the car for 5 hours that day, we made our next stop the park! This playground in Chicago isn’t just like any old playground. It’s huge and goes on forever and there are different sections for different age groups. The boys had a blast and it was good to get them active for a while. Definitely a must-do if you’re visiting the city with your kids.

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The park was pretty close to the bean so we headed there after. We had talked about the bean before heading to Chicago so the twins were excited to finally see it. They were obsessed with their reflections. img_5652

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After deep dish pizza at Giordano’s that evening, we were completely zonked. We called it a pretty early night at the hotel.

The next morning, we started with coffee at Dollop. It was delicious and such a fun little spot. We then had breakfast at Yolk before we headed to Navy Pier. img_5529img_5631

The twins are more on the cautious side when it comes to rides and such so we didn’t know if they’d be up for riding the big ferris wheel. But to our surprise, they LOVED it. It was likely because we were all together in the cart but it was such a fun thing to do together.

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From way up high….img_5651

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They loved searching for rocks and leaves to throw over the pier. img_5627

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This was the view from the pier. It was such a gorgeous walk and I forgot to mention what AMAZING weather we had while we were. It was the last weekend in October and everyone was wearing t-shirts and shorts. It was perfect for all the walking we had to do. But back to the pier, it was such a fun spot! There were some great restaurants with fun patios and food trucks along the way.  img_5626

Skyler was upset later when he saw this picture and realized he didn’t get to be the big hairy spider. bahaha!

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Just as we got all the way around the pier, the twins both fell asleep which worked out perfectly. We headed towards Stan’s donut’s where we let them nap as we rested ourselves on the patio and grabbed some iced coffee for a pick-me-up. Everything in Chicago is walking distance but it’s A LOT of walking! It was shortly after, I realized I lost my favourite cardigan and realized it must have been back at the pier. I was sadly ready to let it go as I had little hope that we would actually find it but Ron insisted we go back for it. (awesome husband he is…but I know it’s because he knew I would have whined about it later and regretted not going back.)  Sooooo back to the pier we went, birthday donuts in hand for when the twins woke up from their nap. By some miracle, after A LOT more walking, we found my cardigan draped over a fence. Thank goodness. The twins woke up by that time and the donuts were a fun treat for them to wake up to. They sang happy birthday to me and I just remember taking in that special moment, feeling so thankful for all I’ve been blessed with. The donuts were delicious.

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That evening we did supper at this amazing family style Italian restaurant that was recommended to us. (my fav!!) Real homemade pasta with giant meatballs and bruschetta.  So good.

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We never stayed out very late in the evenings but I got this night shot on our way back to the hotel.

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The next morning before we headed home, we hit up Heritage Bicycles. It has the cutest coffee adjoining coffee shop and it was the perfect little breakfast stop before we hit the road. img_5646img_5620img_5618

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Chicago is a fabulous city.  There were some things we didn’t get to see in the short time we were there that we would have loved to but that just means we have to go back! We would go back tomorrow if we could!

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Thanks so much for reading! xo

 

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