Halloween Costume Inspo

We are celebrating FOUR years of coordinating costumes over here!! Four years, I can’t believe it!!

In honor of this fun tradition, I am sharing them all in one place! If you are looking for ideas, keep scrolling down!

I did a little poll on Instagram, and this costume was a definite favorite!

GWEN STACY & SPIDER-MAN

Kyle and I had been dating for 3 months when we decided to put this costume together! This was the first time EVER I had done coordinating costumes with someone I was dating! It was such a big deal for me!! I would get on a daily basis how much I looked like Emma Stone. It became so much that I almosted started to expect it. When the Spider-Man movie came out, I knew I had to give it a try, I didn’t know I would find my perfect super hero to do it with me!!

My costume was really just pieces from my wardrobe. A white shirt, black vest, and black headband.

Kyle’s costume we got last minute off of Amazon. You got to love that Prime shipping!! We are thrifty college students, so you could definitely find better looking Spider-Man costumes at any party store, Walmart, Target, and Amazon.

WINNIE THE POOH & HUNNY

Our next Halloween, I was 3 months pregnant and already sporting a tiny bump which pushed this costume really over the top! This costume when our neighbors all figured out we were pregnant!

I wore a red crop top, yellow pencil skirt and yellow tights. I put my hair in two buns to represent ears and filled in a circle on my nose with pencil eyeliner.

Kyle wore a tan hat, blue T-shirt and blue jeans with a sign the reads, “HUNNY.” Suuuuper simple!

THE WIZARD OF OZ

Here we have Ollie’s first Halloween!! We were down in Arizona visiting family, when the idea for this costume came about. My mom and I were second hand shopping at Kid to Kid when we found this scarecrow costume. It was basically brand new and sooo cute. So of course we just had to get it.

I’m a big thrifter! But thrifting kids Halloween costumes in next level! Almost all of the ones we looked at were pretty much brand new and only a few bucks! JACKPOT!!

My costume and Kyle’s costume are both also thrift store success stories.

I wore a white dress, long white socks, red heels and a checked apron. All found at my local Savers (well except the socks because YUCK!) It definitely took more digging and I couple trips to find what we were looking for but like I said before, we are broke college kids so you do what you gotta do haha! The apron was actually a curtain that my neighbor helped me repurpose and my first successful sewing project!

Kyle is wearing a large brown sweater courtesy of our local Savers, brown pants, and a lion hat with connecting paws. Do you remember when those hats were so popular? Gooooood times!

BASKETBALL TEAM

This Halloween I wanted to take full advantage of my growing “basketball!” Kyle worked as a referee last year while we were still finishing our undergrad. With those two factors, this costume really did seem like a no brainer! The only thing left to put together was Oliver’s costume. That was no easy task! I really wanted him to be LeBron James, but there was no way I was going to fork over $20-30 for a jersey that he would wear one time. Sooo back to the thrift store I went! I looked high and low and finally, a week before our Halloween party, I found this Phoenix Suns jersey! I have no idea who the player is but it’s basketball, so it works right?? Lol! It was kind of serendipities that we found this particular jersey because my mom around the same time found matching basketball shorts! Bam! Costume finished!

My basketball is just an old T-shirt cut in half and drawn on with a sharpie.

Unfortunately, I honestly don’t have any idea where to find a ref outfit, but I assume Amazon has everything you could ever want.

I hope we can continue this Halloween tradition for many many more years to come! Look out next year for what we cook up!

Xo,

Tay

Fall Bucket List: Roadtrip

Preparing to give birth over the holidays has kind of turned me into a crazy person! I literally NEED to do ALL of the things! Halloween party? I’m there! Pumpkin Patch? Let’s go! Roadtrip? Okay!

So last weekend after a service project at the school, we loaded our car and we were off. My sister and her family live in Tucson, Arizona and they just welcomed a new baby a few weeks ago! I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to meet him while he was still little!! And I’m so glad I did!

We had such a fun time! Especially Oliver! I worry for Oliver in social setting because sometime he is so shy and hanging on my leg the whole time. Other times he is Mr. Independent and doesn’t even look over to see if I’m still there 😂. He doesn’t see these cousins all the time so I was anticipating having a very clingy toddler all weekend. But you guys, he did so good!! He was just one of the kids! It made my mama heart so happy to see him and the other kids playing so nice together, including one another! I could’ve watched them all play forever.

On the agenda we had a Boo-fest at the park by there house. There were bounce houses and vendors giving out candy and a costume parade! Oliver got to experience Trick or treating for the first time! He didn’t quite get the concept but loved the candy! And so did we! Best part of Halloween with a kid is for sure the candy reward! We all dressed up in our costumes and headed over! Everyone’s costumes this year were beyond amazing! And believe it or not, almost all of them were homemade!

The next day we decorated pumpkin sugar cookies! It was a mess but so fun and so yummy!! Oliver ate his cookie before we were even done decorating! Silly boy is just like his daddy!

After lots of chatting, we loaded up the car and headed home! It was only a short 2 hour drive, which also made this Roadtrip my favorite. I just think anything longer than 5 or 6 hours in the car is pushing it for me! All those road trips down from Utah burnt me out!!

This weekend was just what I needed!

Xo,

Tay

Fall Bucket List: Park Day

With the arrival of our new babe just weeks away, I want to get out of the house and into the nice weather as much as possible. Not just for my sake but to possssssible ease the mom guilt when Oliver has to be cooped up inside for a couple weeks.

With that being said, another one of our bucket list items is to visit a bunch of different parks in the area! I try to take Ollie to the park a few times a week and the past few weeks we have gone to a lot of different ones! It’s such a fun way to get to know a new area, plus it helps me know which parks will entertain him for longer than 5 minutes! That information will come in really handy when I’m looking to fill a big part of our day!

I like to go in the mid morning to get a lot of energy out before nap time! I love to bring lunch or fun snacks and water bottles to make it feel like more of an event. It also helps both of us stay happier longer! Oliver’s favorite snacks right now are craisins and pretzels.

Here is a list of the parks that we LOVE in the Mesa, Gilbert & Phoenix Area (in no particular order.)

  • Freestone Park- Gilbert
  • Dos Lagos Park- Glendale
  • Foothills Park- Glendale
  • Founders Park- Queen Creek
  • Mesa Riverview Park- Mesa
  • We also love driving around different neighborhoods and finding smaller parks there.

What do you do with you littles?? What parks would you add to this list?

Xo,

Tay

Fall Bucket List: Pumpkin Patch!

Last Saturday we took our little nugget to his first pumpkin patch! The entire week leading up to this day included the most gorgeous 80 degree weather. Of course the day we wanted to be perfect weather ended up being 100 degrees! To make matters a little more interesting, I didn’t even check the weather. So all three of us were wearing pants! Good one, Tay!

The farm we went to was so much fun! We went down to Mesa to meet up with some of my siblings at Vertuccio Farm. We had a sandwich picnic at the farm, saw some goats & chickens, road a cow train, ziplined, bounced on a giant trampoline, and checked out some pumpkins! There was so much to do! We actually didn’t even get to it all!

Other than the heat, and it being nap time, we all had a nice time! I will say, however, my favorite part was stopping by Sonic for an slushy afterwards!

Going to a pumpkin patch is such a fun way to get into the fall spirit!

Xo,

Tay

Diaper Bag Review

Having a diaper bag strapped to my shoulders has become an everyday accessory for me and my mama style, as I am sure is true for you mamas! There are so many cute styles, colors, and don’t get me started on brands. Do you choose what’s trendy? Is leather going to be better than cloth? How big do I actual need it to be?

If you haven’t had any of those questions yet, sorry I put them there! When I was first looking for a diaper bag, style out weighed functionality in all aspects. I wanted a diaper bag to be as cute as my little hand bags I had since carried around. So that was basically all I looked for. Now with a toddler and expected my second little nugget, functionality has VASTLY outweighed my want for style. Although style will always be important to me, finding what I need when I need it is non-negotiable.

I know I sound like a diaper bag expert by now. I thank you for that! However, I am just a mom who has finally realized what she wants. I know, I can barely believe it myself.

I started my diaper bag journey with an ultra cute brown, leather, trendy little backpack diaper bag. It was stylish. It went well with everything. It looked great in pictures. It fit a lot of stuuuuff in it. And it could easily be wiped down. That was about all it had to offer me.

I really didn’t realize how OCD I was until my little boy was born. I should back track that…I didn’t realize how OCD I was until I got married and that realization was dramatically heightened when we added a baby. Some day my boys will thank me for how organized and well kept everything must be…errr…maybe. Anywho, what were we talking about? That’s right, diaper bags! Like I was saying, organization. My previous bag felt impossible to keep organized. While it held a lot of things, there really was no way to keep things in their rightful place. When I would ask my husband to grab some Desitin out of the bag in the middle of a diaper change, he would end up throwing half the contents out of the bag onto the floor finding the Desitin just in time to watch the baby shower me, himself, and the carpet surrounding him in urine #boys. Let’s just say we were in desperate need of a better system.

The second downside to this beautiful leather bag was the leather. You would think leather would be so great and durable and yadah yadah yadah. I thought so too. But have you ever tried to put a bottle in or out of a leather pocket one handed? Because if you can, you need to audition for AGT right this minute! No questions asked! After a year of trying to master this artful skill, I still have yet to come out on top.

Third the worst. Is that still how it goes? Have you ever gone into a bathroom where there is absolutely no changing table. I didn’t even realize that this could possible be a thing until it happened to me. Not once, not twice but countless times. I would search in my bag for something to change my baby on with not much luck. Most times I would use the ground and an extra blanket I had packed. I didn’t realize how amazing it is to have a washable changing pad attached to your bag until I got my new bag.

Let me tell you a little about my new bag. First it was a Mother’s Day gift from the cutest hubby on the planet, so that will tell you something! I’m not kidding, though, this bag feels like the Rolls Royce of diaper bags. It has things I didn’t even know I needed, that now I can’t live without. We are talking insulted pockets, easy access pockets, attached changing pad, padded shoulder straps, a special wipes pocket, and SO MUCH ORGANIZATION!! I am in love with this diaper bag!

It makes changing diapers, feedings on the go, and clean up so effortless. It is a washable, easy to clean cloth that is so much easier to work with and way better at holding up its shape whether it is full or not as full…who are we kidding, you have kids! You bag is always going to be full!

I got her (yes she is a girl) at Buy Buy Baby but you can also find her on Amazon HERE.

Good luck out there mamas!

xo,

Tay

What’s in my diaper bag? MUST HAVES

One of my biggest downfalls is that…I CAN NOT pack light! At this point I think it’s an actual condition I may never get resolved! Buuuut can you really blame a girl for wanting to be prepared!?

I have a toddler now, and my diaper bag resembles that. Although there are still many similarities in what I carry around now, and what I carried around a year ago. diapers, wipes, food, and a change of clothes are just a MUST for any chance at sanity when leaving the house for any toddler or baby. Some of this other stuff is just super nice to have and make life a little easier.

For my official diaper bag review, click HERE!

So let’s get started!

Here’s my official list:

FOR BABY-

Diapers: I always carry at least 3. Not too many but enough Incase someone decides to poop up a storm while we are out and about.

Wipes: I try to carry a whole pack with me at all times. I use these for more than just diaper changes. It’s nice to have to wipe off shopping carts, clean faces & hands, and wipe up whatever other mess that might come your way.

Changing Pad: I can’t tell you how many times I have walked into a bathroom and there is no changing station. And even if there is a changing station, it’s not well kept or who knows how sanitary it is!? I absolutely LOVE that my diaper bag came with a changing pad and an easily accessible pocket to keep it in.

Change of clothes: Kids are messy and sometimes unpredictable. I never regretted having a change of clothes with me. Whether it was just a messy lunch and a quick short change or a major blowout and a complete outfit change, I was glad to have it!

Diaper Rash Cream: On long car rides, it’s hard to get those diapers changed as often as you like, so it’s nice to have this on hand to keep those little bums free of rashes or redness. Even on short trips I’ve always loved having it just in case!

Snacks: If you have been to literally any store with a toddler, you know how difficult it can be to keep them occupied without causing a huge scene. Snacks have saved my butt so many times! It keeps them busy, happy, and quiet! Big #momwin. Ollie loves popcorn and craisins/raisins the most!

A drink: For baby this could mean a bottle and formula or for a toddler just water. I like to carry around a mini water bottle with a straw. It doesn’t leak in my bag and is easy to drink from.

Toys: I like to hide toys away in my bag so when we go out it feels like something special and different than what he gets at home. I like to pack toys that are small but interesting like fabric slinkies, cars, or interactive blocks.

Books: My little boy loves books! For my baby shower I got a set of Erik Carle books that were tiny! Like fun size books! I didn’t quite know if I liked them until I realized that they are the absolute perfect diaper bag book! They are so portable that you can take multiple books without weighing down your whole bag! Packing a few keeps my little guy occupied in any setting.

FOR MOM-

Water: I have been much better at this (and seen the importance of) since getting pregnant and moving to the hottest state in the planet! I just keep a regular sized water bottle in my bag.

Tide To Go: okay, for real, am I the only one that literally spills every time I eat? I don’t know what it is but the belly really hasn’t been helping me these days! Sooo basically if you are a hot mess, like me, pack this in your bag!

Wet Wipes: I just really don’t like to be sticky or messy. I keep these to wipe down the car seat or stroller or pretty much anything that gets messy!

Headache medicine: I guess like everything, you just never know. I’m a big wimp when it comes to headaches or allergies so when I feel something coming on, I take something immediately.

Wallet: I think this is pretty obvious but you can’t shop till ya drop if you don’t have any money! 😂

Hand Sanitizer: when I lived in Boston, I became obsessed with hand sanitizer because I was always in and out of public transportation! I would go through bottles of it! I guess the habit kind of stuck! Plus it kind of comes in handy when people want to hold you baby all the time.

Chapstick & lotion: Dry skin comes with a price. For me that means always keeping chapstick and lotion with me.

That’s it for me! What do you keep in your diaper bags?

XO,

Tay

4 EASY tips to grow your hair!

This is a tale of two heads of hair. One very dry, damaged, brittle mop of hair, if you could call it that. & one long, healthy, perfectly colored head of hair.

Unfortunately for me, my hair was the former. I’m a long time bleacher & hot tool user, with chronic dry scalp. When I moved to Utah things only got worse. The dry, cold air slowly sucked the life from every single hair follicle on my head, & I’m not even being dramatic. 😏I had always loved my hair & started looking for ways to restore it. There were {are} many hair products & shampoos that claimed to be the answer I was looking for, yet I was hesitant to pull the trigger on any. They were soooo expensive & how could I know what would really work??

I needed an affordable kickstart to resurrect my once bouncy, blonde hair.

One day while sitting in my parents kitchen, it dawned on me. My mom has the most glorious hair. It’s long & full & healthy & the perfect color! As I was envying her, like I do most days I’m around her, I had to know her secret!

What she told me was so ridiculously simple, I thought there was no way that was it! So I had to give it a try!

4 months later & I still can’t believe how great my hair looks & how stinking easy it is to implement!!! & affordable! Did I mention affordable??

Without further ado, I present to you the 4 easyyyy tips to grow your hair & keep it healthy or better yet, “Mom’s secrets to Amazing hair”

*drumroll pleeeeeease*

1. Stop washing your hair so much! She told me she only washes her hair twice a week! She doesn’t use the fanciest, hair growth yadah yadah whatever shampoo. I’ll even give you a better example, I use suave. If it doesn’t get any more basic than that, I don’t know what does.

2. Use Moroccan Oil after every wash. I lather two pumps through my hair while my hair is still wet & then let it air dry. I put it from the roots to the very tips, really trying to get that goodness on every inch of my hair. I linked the exact one that I use. It’s a little pricey but worth every penny & lasts forever! Plus it’s the only product you need to start with!

3. Stop brushing your hair. She said she combs her fingers through her hair if it seems tangly but that’s it. I’ve done the same thing with no problem. I do use a comb to set my part some days and a brush to put my hair up occasionally but that’s all. No constant brushing or combing on the reg for us.

4. Pack in those greens! My mom said she noticed the absolute biggest change when she tripled in leafy green intake. I’ve since added tons of spinach to smoothies & salads and noticed how healthy & strong my hair has become. Food really is medicine to all parts of our bodies! Give it the good stuff!!

These are the main 4 that we use & live by but there are also more ways to keep that hair strong, long & healthy. Use a heat protectant when using heat on your hair, staying away from heat, get regular trims, bleach with caution etc. I should also add I have gotten highlights since implementing these tips & have still seen amazing results!!

I’d love to hear about your hair journey! Don’t forget to comment!

Xo,

Tay

DIY Sandbox under $20

What do you do to entertain a 16 month old when you are 29 weeks pregnant, live on the second floor of an apartment complex, and don’t have a park close by?

Well if you are us, you build a sandbox!

We have a little porch on the back of our condo that looks out over this gorgeous golf course. In the later afternoons it is perfectly shaded and only mildly crazy hot…#summerinarizona. Oliver LOVES to be outside. He could walk around asking “what’s that” for literal hours. I had been racking my brain as to what I was going to do to keep him busy, doing wholesome activities while not completely overdoing it everyday. That’s when the sandbox idea was born.

It is the end of swim season so those fun little plastic pools were super discounted. We found a medium size plastic pool at Walmart for around $7. Then all we needed was sand and some sand toys. We got the sand at Home Depot for $3 a bag. It took two bags to fill the pool. Earlier this summer, before our beach trip, we got Oliver some sand toys at Ross of all places! The sand toys were $8. That brings us to a grand total offfff $18!

It was so easy to put together, you guys! And he loves it! It still is a little hot where we are to be out there for very long but he has a blast and it helps break up the days.

If you have limited space or a limited budget and busy toddlers at home, you’ve got to give this one a try! Little time, little expense but all the fun! Let me know how your projects go!

xo,

Tay

Gallery Wall how-to

Moving into our new apartment, I knew I wanted to jump on that gallery wall train! So I enlisted my trusty partner in crime & we got to work!

Here’s how we did it!

1) Gather/ pick out your frames. I wanted frames of all different sizes, shapes & textures. We had been collecting frames for awhile. Some we got at thrift stores, others at Hobby Lobby or Michael’s. Believe it or not we even found the smaller ones at the thrift store! I wanted them to either be white or gold. I also found I liked the look of different shapes on the wall. So we found 2 round pieces to add in. One we got for our wedding & one we found at Goodwill.

2) Pick out your pictures. This took us foreverrrr! Literally longer than it did to hang everything. We had so many pictures to choose from! I ultimately ended up going with warmer toned photos that had similar color schemes. I love how it looks on the wall!

3) Measure the wall. We measured how big we wanted our gallery wall with a measuring tape & then laid it out on the ground. Then we spaced out the frames on the ground so we got it exactly how we wanted it. We took note of how far apart each frame was frame the ones surrounding it.

4) Get to hanging! When I worked at Osmond Designs, I enlisted Kyle to help me with some model homes & he proved to be the best picture hanger! Lucky me! He hung all the pictures perfectly!!

5) Show off your beautiful, more completed home!! Seriously why is it that hanging pictures makes a home feel more officially yours? I love it!

I have also seen people cut out squares of paper the size of your pictures, & then using those squares to make a lay out on the wall. I think that method works just as well as mine.

Happy hanging!

Xo,

Tay

A day at the Farmer’s Market

This was our first time at the Phoenix Farmer’s Market! Actually Any Farmer’s Market for that matter. We had such a fun time…well up until Ollie got too hot & needed a nap…which was about 30 minutes into it #momfail But other than that it was great! We left with tons of fresh veggies, fruit, eggs & bread.

We scored the most delicious tomatoes I’ve ever had. That immediately I knew belonged on a sandwich, where they could really shine. Which they did. I made a simple tomato sandwich on sourdough bread with mayo, salt & pep, and dried oregano. OMG! I’m drooling just thinking about it.

We also tried cactus fruit, which you think would be this bold tangy taste but really it just tastes like a cucumber. And even that might be pushing it on flavor. Ky is excited to make jam out of it.

Ky loved the jujubes! He loved them so much he ate almost all of them in one day! Ollie’s favorite were the plums. Yes they are also a “were” because every time I opened the fridge he would grab one out and shove it in his mouth. Is there anything cuter than a baby eating whole fruit!? I love his love for all fruit. I mean seriously you would think I was feeding him ice cream or something with how much he loves it! Blueberries are the worst. I have to cut him off some days so he doesn’t make himself sick.

I don’t know if I can say what my favorite was. The tomatoes were obviously amazing, the squash and brussel sprouts and sweet potatoes were incredible. I just can’t choose. Why does knowing that food is local and fresh make it so much better??

All in all, I am BIG FAN of Farmer’s Markets and I think everyone should go! The end. They are fun, get you out of the house, allows you to try new things and get to know your city. Win win win.

Xo,

Tay