Other than the birthday party this afternoon, our weekend is wide open and that was intentional since Ryan had a lot of late days at work this week and we’re all craving some quality time as a family. Bring on the kid-friendly adventures!
Before I sign off and focus on family fun, I wanted to share my weekly Things I’m Loving Friday roundup of favorites with you. See below for a short list of the things that are making me smile this week!
Have a wonderful weekend!!
Things I’m Loving Friday
Giada DeLaurentiis’ Lemon Spaghetti
Earlier this week, I put a call out on Instagram Stories asking for easy sauce recommendations to use on top of linguine. My caveat: I wanted recipes that called for only simple ingredients I likely already had on hand in my fridge or pantry. You guys came through big time and now I want to try a million different pasta sauces in the coming weeks! I ended up going with Giada DeLaurentiis’ Lemon Spaghetti because no less than four people mentioned it to me and it was fantastic! Bright, easy to make and delicious on top of linguine. The only big-time bummer about my rendition of this recipe is the lack of fresh basil. I had to substitute dried basil which never adds the same fresh basil flavor to a recipe, though the end result was still wonderful. On another note, apparently I need to try Rao’s pasta sauce because a ton of you said to skip making a sauce from scratch altogether and use this jarred sauce because it’s so amazing. It’s officially on my must-try list!
Library Audio Books for Kids
With Chase no longer napping, we’ve implemented afternoon “quiet time” for an hour or so after we unwind together once he’s home from preschool every day. This is time where I encourage Chase to entertain himself in his room with his toys and books but some days quiet time is more successful than others. During a trip to the library earlier this week, Ryder randomly started pulling some boxes off a low shelf and when I went to pick them up, I realized they were children’s audio books. Thank you Ryder for this amazing discovery!
I knew audio books were a thing for older kids but our library has a decent selection of books appropriate for preschoolers — think Frog & Toad, Magic School Bus, Magic Tree House and even Disney stories. I checked out four different audio books and Chase was psyched to give them a try. He’s all in with them now and I have a feeling we’ll be flying through our library’s audio books at warp speed at this rate!
Easy-to-Identify Glasses for Family Parties
There seems to be a trend when my mom’s side of the family gets together. Whoever is hosting our large crew comes up with a game plan for everyone to have some kind of an easy-t0-identify reusable glass to use for the entire weekend. During my baby shower weekend, this looked like monogrammed stemless wine glasses. During another family gathering, this looked like stainless steel colorful wine tumblers (everyone chose their own color). Last weekend Jennie had mason jar glasses with handles for everyone to decorate with an assortment of stickers she ordered from Amazon. (I went with two animals that reminded me of the boys — hence the shark you see above.) I love this tradition that seemed to come out of nowhere because after our time together, we’re all left with a little memento to remember our weekend together. Plus, it’s very helpful all weekend long since no one is left wondering where their cup is, resulting in the use of a million cups that are half-full since no one knows which cup is theirs anymore.
Homemade White Chocolate Chex
I’m pretty sure I blogged about my love for The Fresh Market’s white chocolate Chex mix years ago (we’re talking back in my Florida days) and I was bummed when the location closest to our house in North Carolina didn’t carry it. For whatever reason, I found myself wanting this random Chex mix again this week and took matters into my own hands!
I skipped all of the ingredients in the mix other than the Chex cereal since that was always my favorite part and made a simple white chocolate Chex concoction I couldn’t get enough of on Wednesday. I simply combined one bag of white chocolate chips with 1.5 tablespoons coconut oil and melted them in the microwave before stirring the melted chocolate over 6 cups of rice Chex. It was sweet and crunchy and so, so good!
Around the Internet
Weekend Sales: Neiman Marcus Last Call 40% off Friends and Family Sale: Kensie Asymmetrical Dress (this is the dress I wore to last weekend’s baby shower on super sale!) / Nordstrom New Markdowns: Leith Ruched Tank Dress (the BEST dress you can style in so many ways — with a denim jacket, sneakers, wedges, a flannel tied around the waist… I love this one!) / Reformation Delancy Top (beautiful neckline on this one) / Cozy Camo or Star-Print Pullover / Topshop Faux-Fur Handle Grab Bag (the cutest little bag for date night — love the all black)
Healthy Meals to Make for Others (A roundup of some of my favorite dishes to bring to those who might need a little extra love.)
Plyometric Leg Workout (A serious burner for your quads, hamstrings and glutes.)
Question of the Day
What is one thing making you smile this week?