Thursday, July 21, 2016

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Hi, friends!

The time has finally come! The biggest sale of the entire year is here and I've rounded up a few of my favorites to share with you!!

So many fun fall finds. I love the mix of classics and show stoppers and how everything in the sale is NEW for this season.

Happy shopping, y'all!!


Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Beach Life

We leave for the beach in just a few days and I cannot WAIT.

My family has been vacationing together for as long as I can remember to the same spot on Alabama's coast. 

What I love about this trip is that it always serves as a benchmark of sorts. We don't venture out much from what's always worked for us so eating at the same places we went when I was twelve isn't unusual for us. When you grow up in a place, it has a way of reminding you where you've come from.

It seems like just yesterday that I was an awkward twelve year old sporting my outlet mall clearance rack Polo tee combing the beach for the cute boys. As a side note: I never found them. Maybe it was the tee shirt? Or the bangs? It's a toss up.

The beach has a way of helping me to find my center and being with my family in close quarters for a whole week gives me an even greater sense of purpose. Whether it's building a puzzle with my dad into the wee hours of the morning or taking a walk with my mom every afternoon on the beach; going on a girl's night out with my sisters or splashing in the waves in the golden hour with my girls. It's just time well spent.

I love watching my babies enjoy the time with their cousins. I love watching them run from the rising tide squealing with delight as it splashes their little toes. Even the quarreling over sand toys and beach chairs is charming when it's done by the water in the presence of all my favorite people. Well, almost charming.

Look out for a great big picture dump and blog post when we get back. I hope to have sweet stories to share of all the memories we will make together on this trip. Until then, here are a few from last year's trip!

Me and my Mom twinning at dinner

snack time!

LOVE this picture of my sweet people!

Missing my brothers and their family + one of my sisters

Hope you're day is sweet!


Friday, July 15, 2016

Six Sisters

Good Morning and HAPPY FRIDAY!

Growing up in a big family is FUN. I'm the fourth from the top in a family of eight kids. I've got two brothers and five sisters.

I love having so many sisters (my brothers are awesome, too!). In our family, if someone was mad at you, there was always someone else who had your back. Alliances were formed on the regular and while mostly civil, if intense arguments did ensue over stolen underwear or ripping the tags off unworn clothing (big time NO NO), and things turned UG-LY, you could still find a shoulder to whine on... whether you were the thief or the victim.

When it came to clothing being shared among the six of us, here were a few general rules:

If my sister said "Oh, I love your top" I could never respond with "Thank you."

No, no.

The unspoken expectation was that I must divulge all relevant details about said top including, but not limited to, location of purchase, date buying occurred, size, and price (including tax). And if for some reason the information was not readily given, it would be promptly requested.

What's yours is mine only applies to items that have been worn previously and only if the owner has given permission. You don't ever, under any circumstances, take an item of clothing that still has tags. I would take a gander that about 95% of the arguments that took place between me and any given sister was over clothes.

At one point my dad (bless him) even said "That's IT! No one is allowed to borrow anything from anyone." We all had great respect for my dad but when he threw that out there, I'm fairly certain our response was something like "Good one, Dad." Not gonna happen. But I do admire him for trying to tear us out of each others closets.

If an article of clothing went missing, anything you said or did could and would be used against you in a court of Dad. And as soon as you left the house, a search without a warrant was permitted. Can't tell you how many times I found my clothes stuffed under someones bed or in between their mattress even. The lengths we go to save face... and to look cute.

As we got older and people started moving out, the clothes sharing got less and less. Even to this day, when I go to my sister's houses, one of the first things I want to do is go look in their closets. Old habits die hard, y'all.

Now that we're all moved out and can't blame each other for taking something we can't seem to find, our friendship has gotten even sweeter. I have five built in best friends that would literally drop everything to be there for me.

And they have.

My sisters could poke fun at me all day long but if they find out someone is throwing shade my way, the gloves come off and it's GO TIME. Hell hath no fury like an older sister protecting her baby sister. And nothing warmed my heart quite like hearing my sister tear someone to shreds on my behalf. Figuratively speaking, of course.

Now that I have two girls, I pray every single day that God would cultivate a sweet friendship between them because I know how amazing it is to have sisters as friends.

I'm thrilled to watch my girls grow up together and I hope as they do, they'll learn to see the value in one another.

Each of my sisters has strengths that I admire and want to emulate and they will probably never fully understand how much I admire them.

So Karen, Lia, Kristen, Valerie, and Anna... I LOVE YOU!

Thanks for reading, dear friend!

Hope you have the best weekend!

Love, Laura

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Sweet as a Peach Party


I'm gearing up for what's known in our house as the event of the year. When you have two very special birthdays rolled into one party, the expectation is other level.

Rowen turns 2 in the end of July and just 10 days later, Reese will turn 4. To keep from having a complete and total mommy meltdown over my liddo babies getting way too big, I'm throwing myself into party planning mode.

As a former wedding planner, I have a very limited number of events to plan. Lucky for Matt (sorry, babe) we are go big or go home around here. And momma's not going home.

The idea of a small, simple gathering is not for me. Nothing wrong with those. At. All. Just not in my DNA.

Last year's theme was Reese and Rowen's Farmer's Market and it was a BLAST. For having such a little white house, we have a big ol yard! We had party music, a jumpy house (Reese's only request, bless her), and the most Americana menu I could come up with. The girls had so much fun and I loved the way it turned out. Win for all!

The picket fence leading into our back yard. We had bunting along the fence and the roof line.

For dessert, we we served my grandmother's banana pudding in little jars with wooden spoons tied with red and white twine

Fresh veggies and watermelon slices

This vintage wagon held the kettle corn we gave as favors

Loved how this old fashioned scale I found at Good Will worked with our theme

For supper, we served BBQ Chicken sliders, corn on the cob,  and fresh veggies and fruit. For the kiddos, we did hotdogs.

This year we are going with a Sweet as a Peach theme. Once again Reese's only request is a jumpy house for her and her cousins. Rowen on the other hand is a girl after my own heart. Her only request? Pink cupcakes. #justhereforthefoodyall

I know the days are coming when themes will go further into the Sofia the First direction, so I have to take full advantage of what little time I have left!

Here's some of my inspiration so far...

These are the invites we went with!

Thinking of doing something like these for favors. Maybe wrapped in cellophane and tied with ribbon. 

Love the splash of turquoise 

Leave it to me to get inspiration for my kids birthday party from a wedding. Old habits die hard, y'all.

Stay tuned to find out what direction we end up going in with all these pretty ideas!

Thanks for stopping by!



Monday, July 11, 2016

White Jeans

Hi, friends!


Do I sound excited? Cuz I'm trying so so so hard to pretend that I am.

I do have a bachelorette viewing par-tay to look forward to tonight so there's that. But still. Mondays are just Mondays. You feel me?

Moving on.

This past week I wore my fav go-to white distressed denim. Do you have a pair of these in your closet? You neeeeeeeed them. The rule about when, where, and how you can wear white pants is gone! nobody can tell you not to wear these. You're FREE.

You can wear white jeans with a ton of the same tops you'd wear regular denim with but when you add this pop of white, you're whole look just gets so much brighter. This is especially great for Summer time.

I hear a lot of moms talk about the fear of wearing white ANYTHING because kids. But I think the key is just thinking through where you're wearing them and if a little one with guacamole covered fingers approaches for a hug, ask for a rain check. Tide To Go Pens also work wonders. I try to have one in my purse at all times.

Oh, and the myth about white making you appear larger is also not true. It died along side the "horizontal stripes add ten pounds" adage. Who came up with this stuff?

Get you a great pair of white jeans and plan to keep them around all year. After labor day, we call them Winter White. You're welcome.

Jeans I'm wearing are from Dress Up. They are limited in sizes online but you can also call and see if they have them in a store near you! I've linked them HERE 

My top is from Gap Factory Outlet but I linked a similar one HERE

My shoes are from Target and are linked HERE

Hope you have a good start to your week!

Thans so much for stopping by!!



Friday, July 8, 2016

What's a Lifestyle Blogger?

Hi, Friends!

I'm fairly new to this whole world of blogging and it was only a few months ago that my instagram was limited to pictures of my girls and on occasion, my food. But only if I wanted to make you reeeeeally jealous.

Since entering this world of style blogging I've had plenty of awkward encounters with well-meaning people who just don't get what I'm doing. So! I decided to do a quick explanation. This way, we are all on the same page. Sound good?

Here are just a few of the questions I've been asked recently and hopefully in answering these, you'll gain a bit of a better understanding into this world of style and fashion blogging and why I love it so much.

What's a Lifestyle Blogger

A blogger in general is someone who has a blog. Duh, right? When you start adding words in front of the title "Blogger" is when you start getting into the specifics of what they blog about. In this case, Lifestyle can actually look completely different for any given blogger because we all have different lifestyles. That's what makes this space so interesting and fun! On my blog, you'll read about personal style, home decor, being a mommy, and how-to's for living your everyday life well. That's my lifestyle. So in this space, that's what I write about. 

Why Do You Post Pictures of Yourself?

This is a fun one. I remember a few years ago someone telling me about a blogger they followed but how they just couldn't believe that she would post pictures of her outfit EVERY. DAY. Gasp. How could someone be so narcissistic? I myself thought you'd have to be either totally full of yourself or totally insecure to need to have a feed full of YOSELF. Flash forward to now and here's where I've landed. I follow some incredible women on instagram, most of whom I discovered on pinterest while standing in my closet frustrated by my lack of inspiration.

 I looked at what they wore and it helped me figure out what to wear. 

It's as simple as that. 

Then it got even better. Not only could I gain inspiration from these women, but I could also give a quick tap tap to their picture and voila! Links to everything they were wearing showed up in my email within minutes. This is the beauty of a style blogger. We do the work finding the sales, curating the looks, and presenting them in a way that is real and accessible. Then YOU, the consumer, are (hopefully) inspired and saved a boat load of time.

I grew up in a family of six girls and we had a revolving door in each of our closets (depending of course upon mood and availability). We were constantly stealing ideas from each other. That's what we do, ladies. That's what this space is all about. I don't do this because I want to see pictures of myself. Believe me, that part is terrifying. I do this because I want to inspire other moms to switch their stretchy pants and tanks for distressed denim and an off the shoulder top. Feeling good in your skin is incredible. If I can help another lady friend to do that, mission accomplished!

Is It Just a Hobby?

I think every blogger has a different level of involvement but most of us are using this platform as an opportunity to monetize our blog and instagram. So if you see I've linked an entire outfit, it's not just because I want you to be able to find it easier. It's also because the company selling the clothing offers commission to the one sending traffic to their site. This isn't a big secret and the idea behind this thought process has been around forever. Every time you walk into a store, they have pictures of models all over the wall showing what the clothes look like on. They also have people there to help you find what you're looking for. And if you were to bring a personal shopper with you, they would be compensated by the store for bringing you in. It's the exact same model only it's a whole lot easier for you! I would so much rather see a "real life" girl wearing something than a cranky weirdly posed model. I also would want to hear her take on how it fits. Should I size up or down? Am I gonna need special undies to wear with it?  When a stylist reviews an item, they are trying to take the guess work out for you.

Many of these women are supporting their families through their little blogs. I was inspired to get started in this space when my husband was in the hospital and I started wondering if he would be able to go back to work again. I wanted to be able to help support my family without having to sacrifice personal passions and time spent with my babies. 

So, No, it's not a hobby. It's a JOB! It takes time and planning to make this come together. But it is also an incredible creative outlet and I enjoy every minute of it!

Who Takes Your Pictures?

If you see me in an every day, I-phone picture then either my instagram husband or my three year old is taking my picture. Sometimes I can get my sister to take an OOTD for me if we are hanging out. But I am just not brave enough to ask ANYONE else to take an outfit picture for me. Unless I'm in the mood for an awkward stare and a whole slew of personal embarrassment! Just to be clear, I'm pretty much never in the mood for that.

If I have certain styles I want to really showcase, I meet up with my SUPER talented photographer friend, Kels, to shoot those looks. The idea is to have more of those and less of the i-phone but you know, some days I can barely get the I-phone pic in! #momlife or really just #life 

I hope that clears up just a smidgen of the confusion surrounding this whole world of life and style blogging. Sometimes women in this arena can get a bad rap but I'm here to tell you that I've met some of the kindest, most encouraging, and uplifting women in this community. It's a rising tide where many of us are striving to use the platform we've been given to build each other up and point each other to Christ. It's an incredibly positive environment because you just can't be sad in a pare of GREAT wedges. It's just not possible. 

I'd encourage you to find a few style bloggers and follow along on their journey. My instagram feed these days is better than a magazine due to the incredible women I follow!

Thanks for reading, friends! Have a great Weekend!



Wednesday, July 6, 2016

On Being Awesome

I love three year olds.

When I give Reese a compliment, which happens quite often, (words of affirmation love language, anyone?) she never has any doubt about what I tell her.

The other day I said "Reese, you're so awesome."

Her response?

"Yes! I AM awesome."

I think I probably believed I was awesome at some point but it seems like the further away you get from three years old, the more convincing it takes to really think this about yourself.

In our culture, we celebrate self-deprecation by calling it words like "real" and "authentic". Showing your true self involves airing your dirty laundry and we applaud as we watch others scrounge around in the depths, mostly because we feel better about our own dirt if we see other people's dirt.

I have no problem being real.

What I do have a problem with is having the expectation that your real must look like mine in order for it to actually be real. Are you still with me? That was a mouth full!

I ran across a blog the other day making fun of lifestyle bloggers and their pretty white kitchens and fresh flowers peaking out of their designer bags in the passenger seat of their cars. She went on to talk about her disastrous car and dingy kitchen and how they actually lived there so that's why it looked like that. It just made my heart heavy y'all.

That post didn't come from a place of confidence in enjoying her crazy and messy living spaces. It came from a place of insecurity. Rather than celebrating, admiring, and lifting up, she chose to criticize, call out, and condemn.

Let's not be that. We are called to more.

Let's not only believe that we are awesome... let's commit to finding and applauding the awesome in each other.

Here's the thing: It is a compliment to your Creator to believe He did a marvelous job on you. He believes you are awesome because He made you and He doesn't make anything not awesome.

Loving and celebrating who you are and where you are is a discipline that's well worth the effort. It involves not allowing bullying inside your own mind. The Bible calls this renewal and we are advised to do it over and over again all day every day.

It also involves having people in your life who not only believe you are awesome but tell you that you are. It took me waaaaaaaay too many years to learn that if a person in my life was not lifting me up, it was completely ok for me to create distance.

I want to be more like my Reese in a million different ways. But I know it's only a matter of time before the voices in my baby's mind begin to try to convince her that she's worthless. My prayer is that she will do what you and I should do....

Command the voices surrounding you and the voices in your mind to listen to the Father as He says,




Grab onto that truth and take it with you today!

Happy Wednesday, sweet friend! And I really do think you're awesome :)