Before it’s time to step away from the computer and soak up some quality family time, I wanted to be sure to take a moment to share my weekly Things I’m Loving Friday roundup of a few small things that are making me smile right now. Please feel free to join in the fun in the comments section of this post and tell me a little bit about something you are loving this week!
Things I’m Loving Friday
- Mr. Independent
This is something I’m loving but also something that is pulling at my heartstrings! As you guys know, Chase started walking only a few weeks ago and I swear it feels like it was yesterday when he would only walk when he had a death-grip on my finger. Now he’s all about doing everything by himself and runs around laughing and saying, “No, no, no” if I try to hold his hand. Where did my little baby go!?
Chase has always been a pretty independent little guy but since he’s been a little slower to find his mobility, I feel like I lucked into a few extra months of “babyhood” with our little man. Now that he can walk – um, excuse me, RUN – he is all about exploring and following his curiosity all over the place. It’s so fun to watch, even if I do miss his sweet little hand wrapped around my finger.
- Homemade Soup on a Chilly Day
Is there anything more satisfying than a warm bowl of homemade soup on a chilly day? I pre-chopped a bunch of veggies earlier in the week so on Thursday afternoon, all I had to do was throw them into a big pot with some sliced chicken and spices for a deliciously chunky chicken soup that totally hit the spot for my lunchtime meal.
- A Decorated Bathroom
Growing up, my mom always decorated the bathroom everyone would use on the first floor of our house for Christmas and I loved the unexpected festive touch of holiday towels and trinkets. Last year I bought a few things on super-sale at Kohl’s and HomeGoods after the holidays, determined to give our downstairs bathroom a little Christmas cheer this year.
The addition of a small holly rug and hand towel, a balsam and cedar candle, mini-wreath and two holiday prints makes me smile and brings me a little burst of joy every time I use our Christmasy bathroom! (Also, random story about the mini wreath… I ordered it on final sale through RueLaLa and totally thought it was a large wreath so when it arrived, Ryan and I had quite the laugh. What is this a wreath for ants!? What was meant for a wreath for our front door quickly became bathroom décor!)
- Cat & Jack Pants
A while back, I was commiserating with some of my fellow boy mamas about the lack of cute clothing for boys at Target. I always saw so many adorable girl items but all the boys stuff was awful! Well, lately it seems like the tides have turned! The Cat & Jack clothing line at Target almost always has something adorable that catches my eye and about a month ago, I picked up a pair of $7 maroon jogger pants for Chase that have quickly become my all-time favorite. They’re a little more stylish than sweatpants but are incredibly soft and cozy and actually fit our tiny dude around the waist! Woop! You better believe I picked up two pairs of the pants at Target in the next size up when they were on sale for buy one, get one 50% off yesterday. That’s two brand new pairs of pants for $10.50! I just had to share this here today for any other mamas out there who might have little ones who are actually quite little and struggle to find pants that don’t fall down or look too baggy and ridiculous on their kiddos!
I’m sharing this one here for any bloggers out there who might be looking for a little guidance, inspiration and knowledge about anything and everything related to blogging, social media and entrepreneurship. I participated in the last summit and thought it was incredibly informative and worthwhile and ended up with so many takeaways. (I seriously think listening to Katy Widrick’s session alone was worth my registration fee!)
The Food Entrepreneur Summit registration officially opens at 10 a.m. TODAY and will run from January 4 – 12! (It is a virtual summit and you can access all the sessions on your own time which is what I did! I would just download the audio sessions after they were released and listened to them on walks with Chase and SAdie.) Nicole Culver organized a lineup of incredible speakers and topics again and I have a feeling this summit will be even better than the last!
- Friday Flashbacks
Coconut Oil Peppermint Bark (A simple dairy-free recipe that only requires five ingredients to make!)
Mimi’s Sugar Cookies (My grandmother’s recipe and a family favorite! Dust with red and green sugar for a festive Christmas cookie!)
- Minted Giveaway Winners
Congratulations to Julia, Amanda and Hannah, the three winners of last Friday’s Minted giveaway. All winners were emailed earlier this week. Thank you so much to all who entered!
- Around the Web
Food: Naughty Hot Cocoa / Healthy Chicken Enchilada Casserole / Healthy Sweet Potato Hash / Hard-Boiled Egg and Cheddar Muffins
Fitness: Christmas Running Playlist / 8 Stretches for Tight Hips / 10 Minute Lagree Fitness At Home Workout
Funny: 100 Funny Tweets That Perfectly Sum Up Parenting
Stellar Sales: 20% off all regular-priced items at Nieman Marcus with code FRIENDME / Mizuno Shoes + Activewear sale on Zulily / 20% off at Williams-Sonoma + Free fast shipping with code FRIENDS (ends tonight!) (We love their peppermint hot chocolate and their gold monogram mugs are beautiful!)
Question of the Day
- What is one thing you are loving this week?
Patricia @Sweet And Strong says
There is literally nothing better than some warm soup on a cold day. And I need ALL the soup today! Luckily I have some Chili that just needs to be defrosted in the freezer 😉
I NEED to remember to double any batches of chili I make this time of year and freeze one! It always feels like a treat when I can pull dinner out of the freezer!
Mmmm the soup looks delicious!! I made homemade tomato basil soup on Wednesday and it was fantastic 🙂
LOVE your bathroom!!! What a cute tradition your mom did growing up; and I love that you are doing it now, too! I might have to start that tradition next year – love it!
Hope you have a fantastic weekend!!
Rachel S says
I love Cat and Jack clothes they last so much longer than others. I was having to replace my daughters leggings every other month due to the knees getting holes in them. Not with her Cat and Jack ones.
I agree!!! The quality seems MUCH better than a lot of kids’ clothing, too!
Catherine @ A Cup of Catherine says
Cat and Jack pants are THE BEST!!! We’ve always bought Carter’s and Oshkosh and occasionally H&M because they were the only ones with “functional drawstrings” (WHYYYY do baby clothes manufacturers make decorative drawstrings anyway?!!!) but when we discovered C&J had them, we stocked up. #lifewithskinnybabies LOL
Oh, and having a walker is SO MUCH FUN!!! You will forever be on your toes…just wait till he starts climbing onto tables and running after Sadie, haha. Have a great weekend, Julie!
ooh my gosh your comment about the drawstrings made me LOL. SO MUCH YES. what is the point!?!?!?
Julie @ Running in a Skirt says
Those pants are adorable! He’s getting so big!!
While purchasing some Cat and Jack clothing the other day, a super nice cashier at Target mentioned to me to keep my receipts because that brand is guaranteed for a year! Minus stains and normal wear of course, but holes in the knee or anything like that can be exchanged for a new pair free!
Mary Ann says
Your Mimi’s sugar cookie reminded me of my grandma’s sugar cookie recipe. What a wonderful memory. Like Mimi’s you need to make these cookies big. All of her grandchildren called them ‘pancake cookies’ and they were the only cookie she would bake. Your Mimi’s recipe and my grandma’s recipe are very similar except for one ingredient. Instead of Crisco, my grandma’s recipe called for lard! Merry Christmas!
Exactly!!! You have to make them HUGE! That’s a big part of it! <3
Amanda @ A Blonderful Life says
I also love how my mom would decorate our guest bathroom! She never forgets all of the small touches with hand towels or a small Christmas book on an end table. I have been trying to adopt all of these habits each year. I just recently sent out Christmas cards for the first time after I got engaged this year. I am looking forward to doing more and more of these little traditions. Hope you have a very merry Christmas!
Love that! And congratulations on your engagement! <3
After seeing your snap about the soup, I decided to whip up homemade chicken noodle soup for dinner. It totally hit the spot on a super frigid night in Chicagoland. Thanks for the inspiration.
On a note about Chase’s independentness, I can imagine how you would feel conflicted emotions! I don’t think I’m ready for that day yet. I may shed a tear or two when this little man decides to walk on his own too.
Fiona @ Get Fit Fiona says
I totally agree with you on the soup for cold days. We’ve had cold weather here for close to two weeks now, and I’ve been craving all kinds of warm comfort food. I’m very thankful it’s supposed to warm up next week.
So excited to have you be a part of the food summit again!
Sarah @ Sweet Miles says
We love the Cat & Jack brand at Target!! Oh it’s the cutest!! Adeline is has been SO independent lately, and so smart!! Like how do they figure these things out so quickly??
Primary.com has some cute boy things too–I have both a boy and a girl and I agree, the girl side of the store always has more variety. But nothing beats boys’ chunky knits 🙂
Lauren M Chemplavil says
It is both the absolute best and worst thing watching them grow up! We’ve had so much fun watching our two boys (almost 2 and 3.5) grow and interact and play. It gives me all the feels when they hug each other, makes me smile every time they mispronounce a word (“puffin” for muffin, “me-rote” for remote), and then sad when they start to say the word correctly. I almost cried the other day when putting sheets on my older sons new “big boy bed” because a year ago at this time he was still in a crib, and I get a little sad whenever I hear my almost 2 year old talk (not just because he’s usually sassy), because last year he’d just started walking by now. Where did my babies go?
Still, we’re enjoying them even more as they get older, and I’m constantly reminding myself to enjoy it when they want to cuddle and hang out with me, because before I know it, they’ll off doing their own thing. And I’ll miss them wanting me to accompany them to the potty or to put on their shoes. Damn it, I’m making myself misty-eyed right now.
Enjoy that gorgeous boy, and your Christmas holiday!
(P.s., Cat & Jack is THE. BEST.)
I have two boys, ages 3 and 1. There are definitely some really cute boy clothes out there, but you do have to kind of search for the good stuff(so many big baggy jeans with hard fabric that are not cute and that toddlers can’t run or move around in anyway!). H&M is good for sweatpants, Zara kids is a great line, Some of the gap stuff, splendid kids is great but kinda pricey, and Peek has a great line but also pricey (though they sometimes have great sales). I actually find a lot of cute boy clothes on Diapers.com (and they have awesome sales!) – Appaman brand is so cute. There are also some cute little online stores that I love like Hatched Baby.
Pam Cook says
I finally bought the Fresh Market Peppermint Cream Coffee and it is delicious! Well worth the extra bucks! My son is 13 and super skinny. If the pants don’t have a functional drawstring waist, he cannot wear them! I agree, why would a drawstring waist NOT be functional!!!!
Ashley @ A Lady Goes West says
Love your decorated bathroom and big boy! I’m loving the fact that I’m going to see White Christmas in SF tonight! 🙂 Have a great weekend, Julie!
Kim from MN says
Awwww…thinking of you and your MiMi when I see those cookies. <3 Lots of love sent your way.
Love the little standing pics of Chase – what a fun time! And I love love love that you decorated your bathroom. I always love that – when I go to someone's house and find that they have a Christmasy bathroom too, it's such a fun surprise! 🙂 Cute stuff!
Have a great weekend, hope it's relaxing and enjoyable!
Kathleen Ballantyne says
I just discovered Cat and Jack too and love their clothes.
Kaitlyn @ Powered by Sass says
Oh my gosh, I LOVE a decorated guest bathroom! I put up a “Merry Christmas” print, along with festive towels, and a vase of red berries from Trader Joe’s and my boyfriend made fun of me. I don’t even care! I love Christmas. I also made a batch of your puppy chow yesterday (and quote Elf 😉 ) and I’m planning on making peppermint bark in the coming days to take home to my family. All the sugar this time of year!
Heather @ Polyglot Jot says
My mom decorated our bathroom downstairs too! I like to do some festive holiday soap and some Christmas towels too! This week I’m loving Trader Joes gluten free peppermint jojos!
Chase is adorable but he needs real shoes now that he’s walking.
The Cat & Jack line is freaking awesome!! I love it all!
My Mum always decorated and still does the downstairs bathroom at Christmas! She even switches out her permeant flower arrangement in the hearth (faux flowers) to more festive colours!
Mr Independence looks so happy and cute to be independent!
At one point if I remember right you sharing you were having trouble sleeping?
Any suggestions on something natural to take to help relax and get good sleep?