Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Ten Essential Items You Need For Your Kitchen

For as long as I can remember, I have loved kitchen gadgets.  So I have tried a lot of kitchen items over the years.  I still have my Magic Bullet from 2007!  Which, by the way, you can find here. (They last forever and work great)  I made all my daughters baby food with that same bullet.   My favorites change pretty often but as of now, these are my favorite 10 kitchen items.   

Sur La Table

Go Vino: Dishwasher safe wine glasses are a must in every kitchen.  There is nothing more annoying, then when you buy something new and find out its hand wash only!  These wine glasses will hold up.  

Avocado Slicer: This Avocado Slicer is going to give you the perfect slice, every time.  You can use the other side to easily cut the avocado and remove the pit.  If you hate having avocado all over your hands then this is for you.  

Sloth Drink Markers: Drink charms are a thing of the past.  I love pretty little drink charms that mark which glass is mine.  Only thing I love more is sloths!  Now I can finally mark my drink with a blue sloth.  Who is with me on this?

Bail & Trigger Beverage Dispenser: Mason jars are kind of a staple at my house.  In fact, all of our drinking glasses are oversized mason jars. (you can find those here.) So you can imagine my excitement when I found this oversized jar dispenser.  So pretty! 

Ceramic Cat Measuring Cups:  I love measuring cups that can be displayed in my kitchen.  Anthropologie often has a pretty good selection of decorative measuring cups.  These happen to be adorable cats.

Indoor Herb Garden: I am constantly using fresh basil and it can get expensive.  After many attempts to grow it outside in the Texas heat, I switched to indoors.  This Indoor herb garden is so easy that even I can do it.  (I have the opposite of a green thumb.)  

Le Creuset French Press:  I personally think that a French press gives coffee the best flavor.  I choose the French press over the automatic coffee maker, everyday.  This one happens to be in the color 'Caribbean'.  The plunger and mesh is stainless steel and its durable and easy to clean.  What more can you want?  Delicious coffee, perhaps? You can find the top rated coffee here

Cold-Press Juice Maker:  I love cold press juice and I cant stress that enough.  However, its very expensive.  Recently, I had to invest in a juicer.  Fun fact about this particular juicer:  at the end, the pulp is bone dry!  It's so much easier to clean up than traditional juicers.  

Cast Iron Grill Press:  A cast iron grill press is the key to the most amazing grilled cheese.  We use this press on nearly everything but its especially awesome at smashing burgers.  Its made of cast iron so its easy to clean and will last forever.  You can hand this bad boy down to your kids.  

Kate Spade Kitchen Towels: Decorative kitchen towels can be an easy way to change your décor in your kitchen, temporarily.  I always go for the towel that is funny.  Kate Spade always makes fun towels, so I usually check Bloomingdales first.  Also, TJmaxx has some great deals on kitchen towels.  

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Sur La Table
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Saturday, August 12, 2017

Reasonably Priced Home Decor

If you have never browsed the  "interesting finds" section on Amazon, you are missing out. You can find this shopping guide, here. This section is filled with unique items that change daily. They break all the items down by category so that its easier to view.  (I suggest the 'home' section)  I created a list of reasonably priced Home Décor items from this section.  (Its basically my Home Décor wish list. )

Sea Glass Jars: I am a sucker for glass jars, especially ones that look like sea glass.  (who doesn't love sea glass)  These jars come in blue and green.

Metal Candle Laterns: One of my life mottos is that you can't have too many candles.  In this case, its candle holders but you get it.  

Metal Rope Candle Holder Set: Clearly I'm a little obsessed with candles and candle holders.  However, I couldn't resist this second set of candle holders.  If you didn't like the birds, maybe rope is your thing. 

Hi, I'm Mat Door Mat: When I saw this, I got really excited. I personally love a hilarious door mat, so this is something I need.  This would be a great mat for your future parties. 

Concrete Utensils Holder: This utensil holder would match my kitchen décor perfectly. I am trying to decorate my kitchen in a French Farmhouse theme. This holder is sturdy, well priced and looks great. I was surprised the price was so low, considering that concrete is relatively heavy. 

Stackable Wire Baskets:  Wire baskets can help you organize your things quick.  Plus they looks so cool when they are stacked up.  These are a pantry must have! 

Tire Swing Bird Feeder: The more ridiculous the item, the more I like it.  This is a bird feeder that looks like a tire swing.  I'm more of a bird lady than a cat lady. 

Clear Acrylic Chairs: I keep seeing these chairs everywhere and they look so clean.  I love that they are crystal clear opposite to opaque.  Here is a reasonably priced set of 4 chairs. 

Rattan Coffee Table: Its always an awesome feeling when you can find a toddler safe coffee table.  This table would be a lot safer on my kids head.  It looks great too. 

Succulent Wall Cube: Wall cubes are cool on their own but this one is a planter too.  This modern cube shelf has a special place for a succulent plant. (only plant I can keep alive.)  This would look perfect in an office.


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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Must-Have Baby Registry Item

  Registering for a new baby can be so overwhelming.  Luckily, I'm going to simplify the process for you.  I am going to give you a list of must-have items and show you how to register for them simply.  The, in my experience, is the best place to start.  You can start an account here, to begin.  You will be guided to register with different stores and then each registry will be combined for easy viewing.  This way, you give everyone one website link and they are able to view all the items, from all the stores,  altogether.

I chose to register with Target, BuyBuy Baby and Amazon.  Plus there is also options to register with Pottery Barn Kids, Walmart, Babies -R- Us, Giggle, The Land Of Nod (crate and barrel company), Baby Earth and Crowd Rise (Charity Registry: If you aren't in need, donate to a mother in need instead). 

Once you have your account set up and have chosen which registries to add, you're ready to start.  You can either visit the store in person ( with the exception of Amazon) or you can do it entirely online.
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To add items on the websites, you would hit the "add to registry" button that appears on the most stores item description page. (Each website is a little different, but you get the idea.)

When you sign up with Amazon, you get a little welcome box with free baby stuff! Plus, nearly everyone has prime nowadays so it makes gift buying easy for everyone.  I had several of my friends tell me that they LOVED that I registered with Amazon because it was so easy. 

BuyBuy Baby had great deals, everything we could have wanted and excellent returns.  We still shop there a lot and have left over gift cards from our baby shower.

When deciding on what stores to add to my registry, I chose Target because of its variety.  I knew if someone had bought me duplicate items, I could always return it for diapers.  Target has everything from baby formula, distilled water, clothes, bedding, crib mattresses and the list goes on.  Also, Target has easy returns and pretty good customer service.

My motto about Target is: Go in needing nothing , come out $200 poorer!
(I mean come on, their home decor clearance is always on point )

Here is a list of registry items that we couldn't live without: 

Nose Frida: Don't get me wrong, the bulb syringe from the hospital is amazing.  However, when your kid is sick and snotty, nothing will beat the Nose Frida.  Don't be afraid of using your mouth to suck snot.  I swear, you wont get any in your mouth.  

DockATot :  DockATot is a fairly new item but it looks like a better version of what we used.  We used this travel crib that you can find here.   We had an expensive bassinet but our daughter refused to sleep in it.  So either DockATot or Lulyboo are both great options.

Mesh Crib Bumper:  This is an item that I did not register for and I regretted it. I ended up having to purchase this because my pretty bumper wasn't working for us.  My daughter would smoosh her face into it and I was too nervous about it.  We switched over to this bumper and have been using it for about a year. 

Kickee Pants Crib Sheet: You might already know that I am obsessed with Kickee Pants! (See my post about it here) If you don't already know about the brand Kickee Pants, they are incredibly soft children's (and women's) clothes.  Well they sell crib sheets that you can often find on sale, here

Bonus Tip: They stretch to fit a twin bed too!!

Fresh Squeezed Baby Food Pouch System by Infantino:  We got so much use out of this gift.  Not only was this great during the first year but we now make snack pouches with it.  It ends up being a lot cheaper than store bought pouches.  Plus you know every ingredient that goes inside.  This is a must have.  
Babo Botanicals Baby Gift Set: This company makes amazing products but the wash in particular is our favorite.  All babies have sensitive skin and mine even has eczema.  This was is a miracle for kids and adults with sensitive skin.  Don't just take my word for it, read the incredible reviews on Amazon here.  We buy the wash in the pump bottle but this gift set is a great way to try their products. 

Baby Bjorn: This was yet another registry fail for me because I actually registered for a wrap carrier.  Although wrap carriers are great, this one was actually way better.  I ended up buying one on a B/S/T (buy, sell, trade) site and fell in love with it.  Don't be like me, get one before the baby comes.  

Sound Machine:  I don't think the brand of sound machine is really important.  However, we used the MyBaby SoundSpa but it seems like this item is hard to find.  There are some purchasing options here.  I found many other options of sound machines here.  Just make sure to get that baby some white noise, if you want to sleep. 

Waterproof Cloth Liner: Ok, I actually got this item in a box of hand me down clothes.  Its been a complete lifesaver for the past year!  Its a big liner that's waterproof.  Its soft on one size and waterproof on the other side.  I think its supposed to go under a crib sheet to prevent the mattress from getting wet.  I do not use it for that, I use it for everything.  I can't even explain how many times I have busted this thing out to prevent a disastrous mess. Its cheap and versatile.  You need this item and can find it here.

Miracle Blanket:  The Miracle Blanket is the true key to sleep.  This is an excellent swaddle that is guaranteed to have your child sound asleep.  The grey swaddles with the colored trim are the softest ones, in my opinion.  You can find these here.  

Fisher Price Kick and Play Piano: This was a fan favorite at my house.  I didn't think that we would get a lot of use out of this toy.  Another mom told me I had to register for it and I am really glad I did.  My daughter loved this item until the day she grew out of it. 

Bath Tub Flower:  The Bath Tub Flower was really convenient for us, especially when traveling.  For the first few weeks, we used this flower exclusively in the kitchen sink.  This is great for a little baby.  We even used it when we was old enough to sit in the tub. 

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