bybmg: May 2015
Yay Friday!  Summer is here for our family, so every day feels like the weekend. Russ and I call summer #endlessweekend as a matter of fact!  Hope your week was as fantastic as ours! Here are five highlights from the week!


Our new house has a bit more closet space than I'm used to. I'm still figuring out how to best utilize it. The front coat closet had become quite cluttered. I should have done a before picture, but I removed the three maternity coats, some things that needed donated, and added a few more bins. It looks a ton better, though you have to take my word for it. 
Hello BYBMG readers! I always love being able to share over here. Becky was one of my first blogging friends and I love stopping by and sharing some of my heart. I feel like we have an instant connection in that we are both married to teachers- and Becky amazes me with how well she balances motherhood and teaching. She is incredible and an inspiration.

A little about me... I share over at Living In This Season where I love to share all about life, the good and the bad, and a whole lot of random stuff. I would love for you to stop by and say hello!

 Anyways, today I am going to talk about summertime because it is quickly approaching! I love the sunshine and warmth of summer, but reality is that there will be rainy days of summer. I have found that it is helpful to be prepared for these rainy days. Rainy days could be an actual day where it is raining outside or it could be a day where you feel like it is raining in your soul. Perhaps you are tired from a long night with a little one, overwhelmed by all you have to do- whatever it may be- it is wise to be prepared.

  Rainy Summer Days 

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If you've been missing What I Wore Wednesday, I'm back today! Baby Calvin and I have been chilling around the house in our PJs a lot, as any new baby and mama should, but we have gotten out a little bit! So, today I'm sharing a few things I've been wearing. It's been 3 weeks since his birth, but all of these outfits are within 2 weeks after his birth. I bought a few tops from Thred Up that are a size up from my pre-baby size to make the transition back into clothes a bit easier.

Red Cuff - IF Only Pretty
Black "bracelet" is my new FitBit!
Mocs - Target
This post does contain referral or affiliate links. Read my disclosure page for more details.

It seems like the months just go by so quickly!  Here we are in May with another great Ipsy Glam Bag! If you're not familiar with Ipsy, it's a monthly subscription in which you receive a cute zipper pouch along with five beauty samples. It costs just $10 a month. 

The actual bag this month was pretty fun. Not my favorite, but cute for sure!

This post does contain referral or affiliate links. Read my disclosure page for more details. 

It's the last Monday of the month, which means I'm linking up with Andrea about my Favorite Things!  Each month, there's a new topic (all the topics can be found here).  This month, it's favorite hair products!

-A lovely selfie post hair-curling from a few weeks ago-

My hair regiment is pretty easy. I shower and wash my hair at night. I don't to anything to my hair after showering besides combing it out with a wide-tooth comb. If you were to see me in the morning, you'd think I was kind of crazy with how weird my hair looks, but it shapes up quickly.

So, here are the products I use. Nothing breaks the bank. I always stock up on my shampoo and conditioner when there's a coupon in the Sunday paper. 
It's Friday! I've been just chilling a lot this week with the little man, so today's post highlights a few personal events and then some great things that have been going on here on the blog!


I got a lovely belated Mother's Day gift from my boys.  This is Henry's handwriting engraved on a necklace for me. Cue the tears! I LOVE IT!
With the birth of my third son just weeks ago, keeping the big brothers happy and entertained self-sufficiently is definitely a topic on my mind as we roll into the summer! Today I'm sharing two activities we will be indulging in this summer that are easy and will keep the big boys busily contained in the fenced-in back yard so mama can rest without worrying about them running in the street! 


I shared about Bunch O Balloons back in December as part of a post about Kickstarters we've funded, but we hadn't had a chance to try them out yet because it was WINTER. Well, this spring, on a nice warm day, we tried them out with some friends, and they worked just as promised! We filled up 100 balloons in just minutes! Yes, they are significantly more pricey than your typical water balloon, but tying 100+ water balloons takes forever. I'm sharing this product with you for no benefit of my own. No referral link. Nothing. Get them. They work. They make doing water balloons painless! I would not even CONSIDER doing water balloons with my boys this summer if it weren't for these babies. Spending an hour filling and tying them up just for them to be destroyed in minutes? No thank you.


Get yourself a water table. I don't know why I waited so long to get one. Last summer was the first time we had one, and it was wonderful!  Baby pools are great, but the water table can be filled up quickly. I don't have to worry about the water being too cold. AND the boys don't have to be in full-on swim gear to play in it. It can be an experimentation zone (Add dirt... yep I let them!); it can incorporate other toys that they already have (Hello, swimming Spider-Man!); and it's easy to clean out if it gets messy. Often times you can find these on your local craigslist for cheap, or if you're really crafty, you can make your own!

Easy enough?  What are your fun, easy plans for your kiddos this summer?

Today some friends and I are sharing some of our favorite summer tips, activities, and bucket lists. Hop around and find some new ideas for your summer of fun.

Summer Bucket List from Living In This Season

Also, if you're loving these ideas, but the thought of summer with your kiddos stresses you out, check out Keri's eBook Why Just Survive When You Can Thrive (affiliate link)! 

Dolen Diaries
A little less than a year ago, I shared a wonderful local shop (who also has an Etsy shop!) with you called A is for Antler.  They create some fabulous things, like the headwraps I shared with you last July.

Today I'm here to share another aspect of their shop, cute little baby clothes!

This post does contain affiliate links. See my disclosure statement for details.

My friend, Keri, is launching her awesome eBook today entitled Why Just Survive When You Can Thrive!

Click here to visit Living In This Season & Buy the eBook!

 This book is all about making your summers great with your kids! For a mom with three boys 5 and under, I am so excited about this book. I'm a teacher, so I have all summer off, but it can sometimes be stressful figuring out what to do. Keri provides some amazing suggestions. I love that her book doesn't just provide one way but has a variety of suggestions to find what works best for our family.

The chapters include:
Chapter 1: Survive or Thrive
Chapter 2: The Perfect Summer
Chapter 3: Freedom from Comparison & Guilt
Chapter 4: Embracing your Gifts & Season
Chapter 5: Finding a Routine
Chapter 6: Biggest Secret of All
About the Author:
keri family
Keri Snyder is a blogger who encourages and inspires women to live fully in their current season of life.  Her hope is to create space of beauty and encouragement. She lives in Charleston, SC with her husband and her three children. You can find her at Living In This Season.
You can order a copy here, it is by far worth such a small investment! Join us on May 20 for a blog hop with our fun summer activities.  Keri will also be guest posting here next week!
I'm so excited to be teaming up with a wonderful bunch of bloggers in honor of Rachel of Garay Treasures 30th Birthday to bring you a giveaway for a $120 Target gift card. One lucky winner will be selected to win this gift, courtesy of the bloggers you are about to follow and meet below. Rachel has become a great blogger friend of mine, and I'm so happy to take part in her birthday celebration!

It's Friday again, which means it's time to share highlights of the week!


We had some pictures taken on Saturday. Let's just say this picture won't be making the birth announcement. Oh, life with little ones! I love it all! We did get some great ones, though, and I'll share them with you soon!

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This week, we're all about the maxi!  Be it a skirt or dress, maxis are awesome!

Welp, we're surviving, and I wanted to bring this post to light again since it hasn't been shared in two years.  Go check it out!

We are thrilled that Calvin arrived safely Monday morning. He was quite a bit bigger than his brothers, weighing in at 8 lbs. 4 oz. Henry was 6 lbs. 12 oz. at birth and Wesley was just 5lbs. 10 oz. Needless to say I was surprised and my feelings of being more uncomfortable in the last month of this pregnancy were explained. I'm not one to post my birth story, but if you know my history, we can celebrate that I did indeed have time to get an epidural this time around. Barely. We're home and doing great! Now for the photos!

It's Friday! Hooray!!


My friend who I teach with, and I had made a tradition of getting pedicures on the first Friday of the month, so we headed out Friday after school to enjoy some pampering. She's pregnant, too, so we both definitely needed it!

This post does contain referral or affiliate links. Read my disclosure page for more details. 

If you're like...hmmmm she's been re-wearing some of the same stuff as previous weeks, well, it's true.  I was running out of things that can contain the belly! And I say WAS because baby boy is here!  I'll update more later, but we're all doing great!


Dress: LuLaRoe
Bracelet: gift
Sandals: Saltwaters

I'd had this recipe in my mind for a little while and the ingredients in my cupboard for a while. One Sunday afternoon, I decided to whip them up, and I almost got too far in to the recipe before I was like, "CRAP, I need to take pictures because this is totally blog-able!" I was able to backtrack a bit and get all the steps captured for ya!
I'm so grateful to my wonderful blogger friend, Sarah, who blogs wonderful faith inspiration at her blog, Abiding in Grace. If you don't follow her blog, you need to. She is such a blessing. Today she's sharing her story here about adoption and waiting. 


Hi. My name is Sarah and I’m honored that Becky allowed me to guest post for her today.  I am a momma of two rowdy boys (ages 6 and 4) and two sweet (ok  - a little sassy) girls who are both two.  No, we don't have twins!

Our family has been in the process of adopting for over a year.  When we had originally started most everyone told us we would be waiting around two-three years.  Some of the steps went much faster and we traveled this past March, after only fifteen months to bring our second daughter home. 
Waiting has been the theme and I knew that God would be teaching us a lot, I just never After over a year of waiting, my heart realizes that it is changed, in ways I never even knew I needed to change. 

Are you in a season of waiting? If so, let me give you some encouragement. 

Here we are. Friday again! Here's some great things from my week!


A few weeks ago, I was sorting through my non-maternity clothes and made an executive decision to store some things away until next summer.  There are items in my wardrobe that I know will not fit comfortably or at all this coming summer, so I'm going to give my body and mind a chance to bounce back in it's own time. New mamas, do yourself a favor and just enjoy your baby and not worry about getting back into tip top shape right away. 

I also ordered some new-to-me tops from Thred Up (Use this link and get $10 off your first order!). I sized up from my normal pre-baby size. I looked back at some pictures of myself post-Wesley, and I wasn't as pleased with how I dressed. I tried to squeeze back into things, and so buying a size up will help me feel good in my "fourth trimester body" as well this summer. 
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