02.01.2017

Come Style With Me

My favorite part about trying new hairstyles is how different you can look.  Sleek, wavy, curly, braids, twists, middle part, bangs.  Honestly, you can look totally different from one day to the next just by changing your hairstyle. Isn’t that why we all love a good hair day?

A huge thank you to LumaBella for sponsoring this post.  All opinions are my own.

And to thank you loyal reader, LumaBella is offering all my readers 25% off  the Cool Mist Straightener with the code: Molly25

When I was in Junior high and High School I was constantly straightening my hair.  Unfortunately, I was using a straightener that didn’t have any type of protection and I was destroying my hair.  Now, I don’t have to worry about the damage! With my new routine and my LumaBella Cool Mist Straightener I know my hair is in good hands (or tools? *insert laugh here*)

I’m sure at this point you’re thinking, “How does a straightener hydrate and protect hair?” This is why I love my LumaBella Cool Mist Straightener… It’s straightening process is two steps. It starts with a cool mist infusion that hydrates, protects and preps your hair for the heat.  The second step is the salon quality heat, and it gives your hair that beautiful sleek look (and it lasts!)

Now, to the styling part.  Here is my very first hair tutorial (on YouTube)… EEK!  It was nerve-racking, so please be kind! That said, I would love some feedback! I hope you enjoy it!

Also, if you would like to support me in making more tutorials, please subscribe here! Thank you!

 

01.31.2017

Freshly Picked Giveaway

 

A huge thank you to Freshly Picked for sponsoring this giveaway!

I am so excited to team up with Freshly Picked and give a pair of moccasins to three different people!  Below are details of how to enter and where I will be announcing the lucky winners!

 

Today (01/31/17) Freshly Picked released three new moccasin designs and we were lucky enough to get a sneak peak to share!

Spring Orchid 

Robin’s Egg

Dalmatian 

 

Henry is sporting Robin’s Egg and Vivian is showing off both Spring Orchid and Dalmatian.  I mean, a girl can never have too many shoes, right?  I’ll be honest, it’s been a little while since Henry has worn moccasins and I was skeptical if he was “too old” to wear them now (he’s two and a half.) He seriously loves them! We love going to the YMCA and right now with the snow and wet ground the Y asks that kids come to daycare with a second pair of dry shoes and Freshly Picked moccs are perfect!  My diaper bag is already filled with a million and one things and I don’t need two more pairs of bulky shoes.  Freshly Picked moccs are perfect for this, they don’t take up much space and my littles love playing inside in them too! #momwin

With most shoes Vivian kicks them off within 2 minutes, with her Freshly Picked Moccs they stay on her feet until I take them off!  Plus, she loves touching the little tassels on them, its so cute!

Giveaway time!

To enter you must be residing in the United States and over 18 years old.

  1. To enter the giveaway subscribe to my blog, if you’ve already subscribe leave a comment about your favorite pair of Freshly Picked moccasins.
  2. Follow Freshly Picked on Instagram, click here.
  3. For an extra entry “re-pin” this.
  4. Pick out your favorite pair of Freshly Picked moccs and keep your fingers crossed!

The giveaway ends on 2/2/17 at 11:59pm CST.  I will announcing the winners here and on my Instagram “Stories.”  GOOD LUCK!

CONTEST CLOSED – WINNERS BELOW 

Winners, please email me at RaisingBuddies@gmail.com with your name, address, mock style choice, & size, congrats!

Must claim your moccs within 24hrs (2/4/17 @ 1pm) 

  1. Jilliankrieglmeier@gmail.com
  2. michelle.ragghianti@yahoo.com
  3. janellec@live.com

 

 

01.27.2017

Valentine’s Day Gift Guide for Him

Valentine’s Day. The pressure is on to find your guy/hubby the right gift to say you love and appreciate him.  Or, you just started dating and its awkward, you don’t want to go too crazy – but want to do a little something.  You don’t need to spend a fortune, I’m all about personal heartfelt gifts.  No more stressing over finding the right gift, below are some budget-friendly ideas that he will love.

Travis Mathew Polo

Your guy doesn’t have to be a golfer to appreciate a nice Travis Mathew polo.  I myself love them for my husband because they are so versatile, he can dress it up or down.  They are perfect for work, golf, or a nice date night.

  1. Iris Zamir 
  2. Oxblood Hammond
  3. Dark Blue Casey

 

Travel Coffee Mug & Water Bottle

As lame as these sound, these gifts are so appreciated.  My husband has a 40 minute commute (give or take) and he says having coffee that stays hot and water that stays cold makes the drive more tolerable.  I’ve tried out both myself and may order my own — they’re awesome!

  1. Congo Snap Seal (Matte Black) Many other colors to choose from
  2. S’well Teakwood Water Bottle Variety of options

 

Kickslogix

These aren’t the shoes you see everywhere.  Kickslogix has a great selection and high end unique style without the price tag.  They have everything from dressy to athletic.

  1. Rainmaker
  2. Brogue
  3. Zambia

 

Me Undies 

Matching undies, need I say more?

 

 

WINC

This is a gift that you both get to enjoy together, and thats what Valentine’s day is all about!   You order him four bottles of wine tailored to his liking (red, white, dry, sweet etc.) and have them delivered straight to your door!  I’m attaching tags to my bottles to add a little extra love to each bottle (see below!) The best part is this gift lasts past Valentine’s Day!

Use the code ‘RAISINGBUDDIES for $22 off and free shipping on your order of four bottles of wine ($30 total!)

 

Great Lakes Clothing Company

Okay, so I know this is a whole store and not one specific item, but my husband is a huge fan of their brand.  They have some really cool “manly” items.

  1. Bottle Opener
  2. Koozie
  3. Leather Coasters
  4. American Flag Hat

 

Spotify

If you haven’t heard of Spotify you may want to get out of your cave more often.  My husband and I are huge fans and use Spotify daily.  It’s perfect for commuting, working out, or just relaxing.  If your guy already has an account you can upgrade his to ‘Premium.’ He will be pleasantly surprised when he has 20 million songs at his finger tips and no commercial interruptions.  Bonus points if you create his first playlist!

 

There may be affiliate links throughout this post.  

 

 

01.25.2017

Easy Pull Through Braid Tutorial

If you read my last ‘Weekly Roundup‘ then you already know about my plan to share a hair tutorial every Wednesday.  I’m calling it Hump Day, Hair Day.  So, if you like my style or are looking for a new braid check back every Wednesday, or better yet subscribe and get emailed updates, I have some fun giveaways coming up in February!

Easy Pull Through Braid

 

This is my go-to when I want a braid that isn’t going to slowly fall apart throughout the day.  It’s easy to do and looks so full!

 


Here is everything I use when doing this hairstyle:

1.  Wet or Dry Brush (I swear by these brushes, I love them!)

2.  Small Clear Hair Bands or what I call “braces binders”

3.  Hair Spray 

4.  Bobby Pins (if you want your bangs or a twist in the front)

5.  Dry Shampoo (If you want your hair to have a little more texture to it!)

6.  Curling Iron (I love my Bio Ionic!)

Place the pony tail where you want the braid to fall, I placed mine low, but I also do it higher up as well!  Higher up is a great option for a busy day or working out!  This is also where I out any bang or front pieces you want to be out of the braid, I also put a slight wave in my front pieces using my Bio Ionic curling iron.

 

This is the step you’re going to be repeating over and over again. Divide your pony tail into two parts and then split one of those parts in half (just like above.)  The two sections are always going to go around the single section and then put a hair tie around it, rotating which section of hair becomes “two” sections.

 

Continue sectioning and tying your hair until the end of your ponytail (leave about an inch at the bottom.)

 

When my braid is an inch from the bottom I like to stop and put a little hair spray on the whole braid to prepare for the next step.

 

Starting at the top pull the braid apart.  This makes the braid appear thicker more full.  All the hair ties placed throughout the braid keep it “pulled apart” nicely!  And thats it, your braid is complete!  Once you get the steps down it honestly only takes about 5 minutes!

 

You can do this style with shorter hair too!  This is my sisters hair with the same style with a few twists back to the braid.  Her hair down is shoulder length.

 

 

 

01.23.2017

Weekly Roundup 1/23

 

 

This week was a shit show.  On Monday, we had planned to go see ice castles in downtown Stillwater, but Sunday night Vivian woke up and threw up multiple times. Earlier that week she kept doing this weird motion where she would tilt her head forward toward her toes and belch.  So, Monday morning I spoke with her pediatrician and she had us come to the clinic.  She thought it was reflux and at the time that made sense because:

A) She was only throwing up after nursing.

B) It was happening at night after she had been laying on her back and sleeping.

C) It went along with the burping.

D) No one else was sick so we didn’t think it was a virus.

THEN, we got home from the doctor’s office and picking up her medication and she not only resumed throwing up, she puked six times in three hours, she couldn’t keep anything down.  Of course, at this point my mom brain is racing, I’m thinking this is no longer reflux and I’m getting worried about dehydration.  Luckily, She did start to keep down pedialite and breastmilk for the most part.  The vomiting continued into that night, so Tuesday we went back in.  Her pediatrician now was worried about something we may have overlooked, like catching a parasite in Puerto Rico.  We went home with a plan only to breastfeed for the next 24 hours with no solid foods and were sending in stool samples to see if this was the culprit (sorry, TMI)

 

The next 24 hours Viv did awesome, wasn’t completely back to normal, but doing much better.  Thats when it started to hit the rest of us.  I got sick, then Derek (he’s a victim of man-flu and he knows it,) and it hit Henry.  The three of us were “only” sick for 24 hours and then we felt better.  In a really weird way it was relief, at this point I knew Viv had just caught a virus and thats why we had all gotten sick too. My mom brain could slow down and stop worrying that she had caught some rare horrible disease in Puerto Rico.  Seriously, I overthink and worry way too much.  Oh, and I really need to stop googling things

By Friday everyone was feeling good and we were feeling antsy since we had been stuck inside all week.  We decided to venture to the happiest place in Minnesota, IKEA.  I love looking at all their kitchen displays and dreaming of a big white kitchen, with double ovens, a five-seat island, and white quartz counter tops!  I did come home with a nice big plant and a couple random things.  PSA: If you’re in need of little kids silverware IKEA has awesome packs of 18 pieces for $2.49.  I always pick up a fresh pack when we are there.  We also couldn’t pass up the ice cream with Lingonberry sauce at the end either.

 

The rest of the weekend we took it easy and hung around the house.  Lots of hockey was enjoyed on Saturday for Hockey Day Minnesota, anyone not from Minnesota have a hockey Day?

I got a few questions of when I would posting this pull through braid,  I didn’t get to it this weekend, but starting this Wednesday I’ll be doing ‘Hump Day, Hair Day.’ When it’s mid-week and Friday still seems far away, lets at least all have a good hair day!  So, I’ll be posting this easy braid as my first hairstyle tutorial!  Any suggestions on what you would like to see after that?

 

I want to know what you want to see!

 

Cool Digs, New Finds

Being sick this week we didn’t come across to many new things to share. But, Vivian did have one of the comfiest little playsuits to wear while she wasn’t feeling good, its made by Pickles N’ Roses.  I love their little dresses they make too!  The fabric the outfits are made out of is soft and lightweight which was awesome for a sick babe.

This playsuit that Viv has is currently sold out, but will be restocked soon along with a new cactus dress that we have our eye on!

Right now I’m all about house plants and flowers.  When I was a kid I had a friend who’s mom had a lot of indoor plants and I thought it was a little weird, now I envy all her plants!  I’ve started my “collection” and right now at IKEA this gem, Majesty Palm, is only $11.99!

 

 

 

 

 

01.19.2017

30 Fabulous Shoes

 

 

I love all types of shoes from pumps to sneakers!  A gal who knows how to dress up and down is a real fashionista to me.  So, I’m linking 30 of my favorite shoes, all different styles and budgets, I promise there is something for everyone!  And if there isn’t, you need to try a pair out and I promise you will fall in love.  Check ’em out!

 

 

 

1.  Suede Over The Knee Boot (Evia) *ON SALE* 

2.  Mid-Top Running Shoes (Thea) ***I’ve linked a website that is $40 cheaper than on Nike.com

3.  Chelsea Boots

 

 

 

4.  Slingback Buckled Ankle Booties **Under $25

5.  620 Sneakers

6.  Austin Bootie

 

 

 

7.  Dez Lavendar Heel **under $40

8.  Deal Breaker Flats

9.  Unforgettable Over the Knee Boot

 

10.  Gabby Heels 

11.  Lea Wedge **Limited sizes in stock (I’ve been checking everywhere!)

12.  Amber Orchard Clog 

13.  Blake Bootie **40% off

14.  Hybrid Leather Strappy Bootie **50% off

15.  1964 CVS Boot

 

 

16.  Chambray Del Ray Sneakers

17.  Purdy Heels

18.  Pink Cactus Slide Sneakers **Splurge

 

19.  Pointy Toe Flat **Under $25

20.  Call It Spring Pumps **Under $40

21.  Arielle Wedge Booties

 

22.  Faux Suede Strappy Ankle Heels  **Under $30

23.  Ankle Boots with Studs

24.  Leather Boots with Wooden Heels **$100 off

 

25.  Leather & Suede Pumps

26.  Zola Riding Boot  **Designer might surprise you, love her!

27.  Madison 12-hour Pump

 

28.  Tall Rain Boots

29.  Leather Slingback High Heels 70% off!

30.  Highland Over the Knee Boot **Spluggggeee

01.16.2017

Weekly Roundup 1/16

 

 

I always have random things I want to share with you guys, but they may not warrant a full post. So, starting today and every Monday following, I’ll be posting my “Weekly Roundup” including tidbits from the past week, new recipes, Target deals, cool finds, awesome outfits, or small shops and a little insight into what it’s like to have two littles 18 months apart!

This past week was my husband and I’s wedding anniversary and my birthday (double whammy!) It was also very snowy here in Minnesota and the roads were horrible, so for my birthday we went and had breakfast at our favorite little cafe and then headed home for a day of staying cozy inside.  Side note: We ended up bringing most of our breakfast home after Henry wouldn’t stay in the booth and eat and Vivian only wanted to be held (going out to eat isn’t the easiest these days… I hope we aren’t the only ones that struggle with this.)

 

For our anniversary we dropped the babes off at my mom and dads and had dinner alone, it was wonderful!  Before we had decided where we were going to go for dinner we joked that Culvers would even be enjoyable at this point.  Parents (especially with babies and toddlers), I’m sure you understand how little you actually get to sit and enjoy a meal without interruptions, pretty much never.  We decided on Bricks and had a great time talking (mostly about our kids), but also we love talking about our dream home and where we see ourselves in five years.  It’s something we have always done.  Here’s some of our inspo below, dreamy am I right?

After dinner my husband caved to my request to go to Target and we ventured through the aisles child-free (it was amazing!)  I couldn’t pass up the $25 off $100 bed and bath deal, so happy birthday (to me) and anniversary to us.  I don’t want you to think that my husband didn’t get me anything either, he is actually very romantic (he wrote me a poem) and “rain check” for the wedges I’ve wanted for months now, but my size is sold out.  Do we have the same taste in shoes?

It’s funny though, my husband and I were dying for some “us time” and dinner was SO nice, but by the time we were in Target walking around we both started to get “the itch.”  We missed the kids.  We were in the bath towel aisle and the next over a mom was shopping with her three kids and the kids were laughing.  My husband gave me a look and said, “I miss them.” So did I, it didn’t even feel right to have a peaceful trip to Target without Henry trying to jump out of the cart to run to the toy aisle and Vivian wanting to be held and being a ham to everyone who passes by.  We decided to get a cake and bring it back for everyone to have.  Which by the way, Target has a fantastic red velvet cheesecake in their bakery section, its calorie free too (just kidding!)

On Friday, we celebrated my birthday with my mom and dad.  Since I was a kid we have always picked out what we wanted for dinner and what kind of cake.  My mom will never let me live down the time I asked for hamburger helper.  I was probably 8 or 9 and had it at a friends house and thought it was delicious.  Anyways, these small traditions make me the happiest and something I always look forward too.

Henry tried out ice skating for the first time.  Derek and I both played hockey so this was kind of a big deal to us. Derek even said, “This is pretty much why we had kids!”  Just to be clear, he was completely kidding!  Henry was excited to get all his gear on (minus the helmet) and we headed out to the pond.  It only lasted about 5 minutes, before we put the boots back on, but it was exciting to see him try!

 

Sweet Digs, New Finds 

One of my favorite things is wandering around the shops on Grand Ave. and in Highland Park. One of these shops is Paper Source.  If you like cute planners, calendars, coffee cups, and banners this place is heaven on earth!  We ventured down there on Saturday evening and they some really cute new pieces I just have to share.  I wanted to take everything home with me!

From Left to Right:

  1. 2017 Calendars
  2. ‘Coffee is my spirit animal’ mug
  3. ‘Wake me for Brunch’ sleep mask
  4. ‘Hello Honey’ mug
  5. Botanical Notebooks
  6. Honeycomb Wreath
  7. Ice Cream Cone Garland
  8. Sweet Talk Pens
  9. Custom Notepads

 

When Henry was little one of my favorite outfits of his was from Lulu & Roo, he has long outgrown it!  I thought it was time for Henry and Vivian to get matching little outfits from there (I’m a huge sucker for matching or coordinating outfits for the littles.)  If anyone is looking for a great shower or baby gift Lulu & Roo make the most amazing “take-home” outfits!  Our next baby we will not find out the gender of and I definitely plan on getting the gray newborn outfit for the hospital, it’s perfectly gender neutral.

 

Henry’s Hoodie

Vivian’s Hoodie

Sweat Pants

Vivian’s Headband

Newborn Grey Sweats & Hoodie

Henry’s Mustard Hoodie & Sweats

01.13.2017

The Truth About Instagram

 

 

I feel like I’m writing a speech for winning an oscar or something, “I’d like to thank everyone who supported me…” But, really you guys – 30,000 followers! I’m so amazed and feeling pretty grateful, so thank you! I used to see people with 30k followers and think their life was perfect looking.  Somehow having a bigger number of followers creates a bigger facade that they are “better” or have no problems (everyone does!) I just want to keep it real with you. I’m literally sitting on my couch drinking my lukewarm coffee, watching my third straight episode of ‘Paw Patrol.’ I just changed an explosive diaper, tossed in a load of laundry and I’m looking like I haven’t seen civilization in weeks.

My kids aren’t always dressed in cute clothes and either am I (I wish I was!)  I worry about stupid stuff and my house is a disaster 90% of the time (toys are going to be the death of me!) I’m a hot mess, you’re a hot mess, okay lets be friends! I’m sharing 30 random things about myself because I think the small things are what make you. So, lets be real and get to know each other! Cheers to 30k!

 

1.  I didn’t like my husband when I met him for the first time. (Here we are in our “College days.”)

2.  I hate the dentist, like seriously, I’d rather give birth than go to the dentist (but, I still go.)

3.  I dreamt of being a mom since I was a little, it seriously is a dream come true.

 

4. I played hockey through high school (I was even captain.)

5.  I hate ranch dressing and tomatoes! Yuck!

6.  Have have two sisters who’s names also start with “M”.

7.  I’m a sucker for all Starbucks seasonal drinks.

 

8.  Actually, all coffee in general.

 

9.  If Henry would have been a girl, we would have named him Norah.

 

10.  Derek and I’s first dance song was, ‘Our Love is Easy’ by Melody Gardot.

 

11.  I actually like vacuuming, but I hate doing dishes.

 

12.  I love following Cara Loren and Amber Fillerup on Instagram.

 

13.  My whole family is obsessed with golf.

 

14.  I hate when people refer to me as a “young mom” (you wouldn’t call someone an “old mom!”)

 

15.  I would much rather take a bath than a shower.

 

16.  My favorite channel is HGTV, I’m a huge fan of Fixer Upper. #Jojoismyspiritanimal

 

17.  I love trying to be organized, but I’m not really good at it.

 

18.  Target is my second home.  Somedays we just go there to wander around (maybe come out with a throw pillow or two!)

 

19.  I’m always up for trying a new Pinterest recipe, especially using my crockpot! (Here’s one of my favorites!)

 

20.  I’m a born and raised Minnesotan.

 

21.  Ryan Gosling and John Hamm are my two celebrity crushes.

 

22.  Isla Fischer and Blake Lively are my lady crushes.

 

23.  I would love to have a “big” family.

 

24.  I consider myself a movie and tv show “buff.” Mostly due to my husband.

 

25.  I HATE when people chew loudly. This is by far my biggest pet peeve! Anyone else?

 

26.  I love interior design and appreciate all different styles.

 

27.  I am a god awful singer.

 

28.  As a kid I wished my hair was stick straight, but now I appreciate my wavy hair.

 

29.  My “dream” place to travel to is Sweden.

 

30.  I overthink and worry about everything. Most things? Some things? Ugh…

 

 

 

 

01.08.2017

18 Stylish Diaper Bags

When I was pregnant with Henry, it seemed I was on the hunt for a diaper bag that I actually liked for a long time!  I had found many that screamed “Diaper Bag” and I wasn’t ready to give up on staying trendy just yet (or ever.)  I was looking for a diaper bag that was stylish, no one could know it was a diaper bag, and that I would have plenty of room to stay organized.   I’ll keep it short and simple, after a long search I’ve found some real gems!  Here are some of my favorite places that sell the best fashionable and functional diaper bags.

**Every brand name is “clickable” and linked to checkout what other styles of bags they have to offer.  Here are just some of my absolute favorites.

 

Lily Jade

 

 

 

 

Little Unicorn

 

 

 

CoCo + Kiwi

 

 

Fawn Design

 

 

StorkSak

 

 

 

 

 

01.05.2017

Project Master Bedroom

We moved into our new home mid-August and the first thing we did was start painting. If you don’t have much of a budget, but want change, paint! Paint is cheap and makes a huge difference!  Side note, at our old house I painted our living three different times while I was pregnant, I couldn’t decide what color I wanted! #crazypregnancyhormones

The previous paint colors in our current master bedroom were not my taste.  I had taken “before” pictures on my phone, but while in Puerto Rico my phone went for a swim and all those pictures were not saved.  I can describe to you that the Master bedroom was a yellow color, we aren’t talking about a soothing yellow, more between a school bus and bright sunshine yellow.  Yes, it was cheery, but I always want to be able to sleep at night.

Our biggest piece of new furniture we purchased for our room was our headboard.  I had been looking for a while and couldn’t decide if I should make it myself or buy it.  After finding one on Amazon I liked, I did the math and found it would be cheaper to buy this one then to make it.  Ours is the king-sized Navy, but it comes in all sizes and many different colors too!

Tuft Headboard 
Can you spot my helper?

 

Our second item to cross off our list was new end tables.  I wasn’t looking for anything fancy, just something that looked cute and did the job.  I also found ones I liked on Amazon and were under $75 each, score!  They weren’t difficult to assemble and had good reviews (I seconded the good reviews!)

Elmwood End Tables

For our lamps I went to the local thrift store and found old ones for $5 a piece. Obviously I spray painted them both with a high gloss navy.  It worked like a charm! I picked up new lampshades from Target and just like that- matching lights for under $50!

 

Since we went with a headboard and no footboard I felt like we needed something at the foot of our bed.  I found a birch bench at ikea and painted it myself.  It worked out because it was long enough to look good at the foot of a king size bed.  I just place a throw blanket and pillows on it to help soften the look of having a wood bench.

 

 

For warmth and texture we added a rug from Target and drapes from HomeGoods.  I searched for a long time for curtains that were high quality and long enough that weren’t going to make my bank account (or husband) have a heart attack.  Like seriously, you can end up spending thousands on drapery.

Drapery
Rug

 

I always like white bedding, I think it looks clean and cozy.  I always keep our duvet cover white and switch our sheets out with the season.  During the winter flannel is nice and cozy, but for summer we prefer cotton (same goes for pillow cases.)  I always add different throws to our bed for texture and of course to cozy up with when SOMEONE hogs the duvet.

Duvet Cover & Bedding

For the decor and finishing touches I’m always browsing around HomeGoods, Pottery Barn, Pier One, Hobby Lobby, World Market, Wayfair, Joss & Main, and of course Target!

Printed Board Above Bed 
Circle Mirrors

 

Let me know what you think! Helpful? Interesting? Inspiring? Boring?  Should I share other rooms in our home? Thanks friends!