My Style

This year my daughter truly started to come out of her shell at school and build some friendships with girls in her class… it makes my heart so full to see her little budding personality and excitement for going to school.  I wanted to do something special for her and some of her new “Gals” so I decided to host a little Galentine’s Day Playdate.  If “Galentine” is a new term for you, it’s basically when you celebrate Valentine’s Day with your best gal pals!  I really do think it’s nice to take time to appreciate all the loving relationships in your life and that’s what makes February 14th a special day (not just for the candy and the roses although that’s always good too ;)).

For the girl’s Galentine’s Play Date I made the playroom festive with balloons a Valentine teepee and lots of music for dancing!

I also thought it would be fun to set up a cupcake decorating table and have a little craft at the end.

For the table set up I decided to use wrapping paper as a runner because the colors tied in so well together.  I love using wrapping paper as a runner because its inexpensive and there are SO many options.  Basically all of the party decor I already had on hand.  My Rae Dunn Ceramic bowls and vase which I collect (from T.J. Maxx and Marshalls), the pink chargers I grabbed at Michael’s last year for Easter and I was so excited when I realized they would be perfect for this holiday as well.  I grabbed the paper goods and wrapping paper as well as the heart garland from Target.

I baked some cupcakes (store bought, I mean who has time to do them from scratch?) with store bought vanilla icing (again who has time) For toppings I did crushed graham crackers, mini chocolate chips, strawberrys, conversation hearts and lots of sprinkles!


They loved decorating and most importantly eating their creations!  We did a quick little craft after creating Valentine’s Crowns

What a fun Gal’s Day celebration it was!! They laughed, giggled and ate a ton of junk food!   I hope my daughter grows up with loving friendships and remembers this special little playdate!

Have you ever celebrated Valentine’s Day with your Gals? What fun things do you like to do??

Thanks for stopping by!

Jordan

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It’s hard to believe that it’s almost February 1st and Valentine’s Day is around the corner!  January is such a LONGGGGGG month.   Ben and I have been chatting about what we should do for V-day this year, it would be easy to say ehhh, “lets just stay home and not make it a thing”.   Especially now with having kids, going out requires a babysitter and a bit more effort/planning.  But keeping your marriage strong, healthy and happy requires work sometimes.  I like to think Ben and I make the effort for each other throughout the year (when we aren’t taking care of our businesses, the kids, the dog, the house, the bills, you get the picture) Valentine’s Day gives us that extra nudge to be more romantic and make some time for one another.  This past October we celebrated 10 years of marriage in PARIS, it was a trip dreams are made of.  The most romantic week we’ve ever had besides our honeymoon.  I honestly think we appreciated the time alone together SOO MUCH  MORE 10 years later vs. as newlyweds when we were still actually babies ourselves.

(Honeymoon- St. Lucia, December 2008)

(10 Year Anniversary-PARIS, October 2018)

Anyway I digress, it’s funny how time shifts your perspective and appreciation of your significant other.  Now back to Valentines Day ideas; if you’re dating, engaged, just married or married for awhile, I thought it would be fun to share some date night ideas!  If you want to make it a night out or stay in.  Plus decor, fun outfits to FIT the occasion 😉 and some gift ideas!

MAKE THE MOST OF A NIGHT IN

Welcome to our home all ready for Valentine’s Day let me first show you some of my Valentine’s decor before I share my ideal romantic night in.   You guys know I love decorating my farmers porch each season and here I kept out some winter and Christmas decor with the sled and pine trees, but adding some cute pops of red a banner I made and a cute pillow that I’ll link at the bottom of this post.

A few romantic pink and red Valentine’s Day touches around the home really make it feel special.  I always love adding a pretty pillow, cozy blanket and some garlands on the fireplace.

There is something to be said about a cozy relaxing night at home.  If you have kids and can’t get a babysitter and want to spend the night IN make it special.  I personally love a good cozy night at home.  Some fresh flowers, glass of red and a roaring fire instantly make for a romantic night at home.  If you’re up for it cook a romantic dinner, but who are us mom’s kidding?!  If you worked all day or took care of kids all day you probably don’t feel like cooking an elaborate meal FOR ANYONE haha.  If you ARE going to stay in and too tired to cook, I suggest ordering your favorite takeout but have it delivered RIGHT after the kids go to bed.  Light some candles, sit and enjoy the meal together.  Our favorite date night at home delivery food is Sushi and I always set it up on our own pretty sushi dishes.

SET THE TABLE:

 

Make an effort by wearing something cute.  This set of “KISS ME” pajamas is so comfy plus a nice departure from my usual sweats and aren’t expensive!  Our kitchen stools are from HERE.

NIGHT AT HOME:

it’s always fun to binge watch a new show together.  I just finished “YOU” on Netflix- it’s creepy, kind of sexy, kind of romantic in a twisted way 😉  maybe a little 50 Shades? too much? Or just play it safe and watch a chic flick?  I think I may force Ben to watch THIS with me, ha I sense the resistance already.  Enjoying time together at home, with a few of these simple ideas will make it a special night with out having to go crazy on an expensive meal outside the home.

 

BUT JORDAN WHAT IF… WE CAN GET A BABYSITTER!

What should we do?!?

If you are bored of the same old dinner out and want to really change it up.  I suggest an activity or experience together.  Below are some things we love to do together or things we want to try soon:  (Make a reservation ASAP)

  1. We always enjoy going for pedicures together before dinner, it’s so relaxing to chat and unwind.
  2. Book a Couple’s Massage or go to a sauna/spa (FIRE AND ICE)
  3. Couple’s Salsa Lesson at a local dance school
  4. Cooking Class (learn to make sushi!)
  5. Music at a local small venue
  6. Go to a Comedy Show– there is nothing better than a good laugh!
  7. Go to the Theatre
  8. Go to a Jazz club 

 

GOING OUT CLOTHES:

 

GIFT IDEAS FOR HIM:

I framed some romantic photos from our trip to PARIS and hung them above our bed, it’s a simple gift idea (one that I’m waiting to see how long it takes him to notice ;)) I also love these items as well:

 

GIFT IDEAS FOR HER:

I hope this gives you some ideas for decorating and celebrating Valentine’s Day with your special someone.  If you stay in or go out just enjoy the time together!  10 Years later and I still get excited to go out on a date with my hubby!  Now to decide…what should we do for Valentine’s Day this year?!

Jordan

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In the world of fashion, the importance of building a wardrobe with versatile foundational elements is commonly stated amongst bloggers and other stylist/professionals.   The essentials may include black pants, great pair of jeans, white button down shirt, jean jacket, skirt, blazer and so on…  I always find it helpful to read what stylish-dressing-gals suggest are the must have item’s to own for creating outfits that are classic and easy for mixing seasonally and styling for different events/occasions.

As an interior stylist and decor blogger the same principles can be applied to key home decor items to own in your home.   There are several pieces that I’m going to outline in a new series called Home Decor Essentials.  I’m going to highlight my favorite foundational elements for building a versatile arsenal of decorative items so that your prepared for any season/occasion inside your space.

I’m going to list my top most used decorative items and then search them out from some of my favorite retailers.  These essential items will be versatile pieces you can use year after year, in many different seasons for a variety of vignettes and occasions.  This is also a great list for someone who is about to get married and register for home accessories, about to buy a new home or someone looking for guidance when they are out in a local home store and don’t know where to begin.  I thought it would be fun to see how my home decor “essentials” look through the lens of different retailers.

So today we are shopping for our “essentials” at Amazon.   Amazon has great options when it comes to home decor and with some of the shipping options being two days you really can’t go wrong!

THE HOME DECOR ESSENTIALS LIST:

  • Throw Blanket
  • Throw Pillows
  • Tray
  • Woven basket
  • Vase
  • Stack of books
  • Pitcher
  • Cutting Board
  • Topiary
  • Cake stands
  • Wreath

Print your own copy by clicking here:HomeDecorChecklist

Here I rounded up decor essentials from AMAZON!

Throw Blanket– It goes with out saying a beautiful blanket draped over a sofa always looks beautiful and welcoming.   I love the texture of this one.  It’s a great price too!

Throw Pillows– Going with a classic buffalo pattern pillow will carry you through every season and a neutral like gray can’t ever be wrong.

Tray– I love using trays- all over our home.  My favorite is on our coffee tables.

Woven Basket– Great for storage, for hiding kids toys, blankets and books

Glass Vase or Large Mason Jars- I love a fresh vase of flowers in the kitchen and this glass hurricane shape is so classic and beautiful.

Stack of books– A stack of books is so simple and classic.  Amazon has some of my favorite design books and nothing looks more stylish on a coffee or side table.

Pitcher– A white pitcher is classic and effortless.  I use my fine for fresh flowers or faux flowers.  It looks beautiful on the kitchen counter or dining table.

Cutting Board– Cutting boards look great in the kitchen leaning against the wall, perfect for serving cheese and crackers at a gathering or cocktail party.

Topiary– If you have black thumb with indoor plants like me I love that these little faux plants have a distinct and sophisticated shape, they look great on a shelf, office, guest bedroom or bathroom.  Plus you never have to water or worry about them dying.

Cake stands– I love these for entertaining and I tend to get them in many different sizes, I love when they are tiered as well!

Wreath– I love changing my wreaths out for the season but if you would just rather keep it simple go with a magnolia wreath or a boxwood, the greenery is always going to look welcoming.

So here you have my Home Decor Essentials- picked from Amazon.  Notice they could work in any season, they can be used in many different ways all around your home.  These essentials have a bit of a Farmhouse style to them however I’ll be sure to mix that up retailer to retailer and put different spins on style as well.

I hope you enjoyed learning what my go to essentials are for home decorating.  If you want to see examples of these essentials in use- head over to my Instagram and see if you can spot them.  I bet you will see at least one of these items in every photo!

Have a great day!

Jordan

*This post contains affiliate links.  I may receive a small commission if you click a link and purchase something I have recommended.  Clicking on these links won’t cost you any extra, but it WILL help keep my site up and running.

To shop all my amazon favorites go to my AMAZON STORE

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Today I wanted to share with you some of the photos captured during our Christmas card session!  Typically we get all these adorable photos, then only a couple make it to the Christmas card.  I thought, why not share some here on the blog with all my insta-buddies!  This year I decided to use our home as the backdrop for some of the images, I wasn’t sure how it would turn out since we almost always do family portraits outside somewhere. I thought I’d share the outcome of that little idea with you guys.  I think sometimes we forget that our own home is where we are most comfortable and ourselves.  I also find that each year the holiday season goes faster and faster, anyone else?  Some of my favorite photos of our children are their Christmas photos, I treasure them so much!  I know that in a few years they will probably refuse to do them so I’m taking advantage while I still can. (TEARS)

We worked with local photographer Jamie Isherwood,  Jamie Isherwood owns a full service boutique photo studio specializing in family portraits.  She works with you in advance of your session, if you need assistance in choosing your families outfits.  She also remains hands on all the way through to the end, post photo session, to help you choose the best photographs and even gives you guidance on prints & gallery wall lay out.  So from start to finish you’ll receive a very attentive approach with your family portraits.  Now this isn’t my first rodeo with family photos, I’ve been doing them since our kids were really young, so I kind of have a good grasp on it at this point.  However, I know that for most family photos can be a bit overwhelming and stressful.  I love that Jamie offers a boutique experience for her clients, many of which work full time and of course have young children making it extremely difficult to make important decisions related to the photo session like what outfits everyone should wear, where to take the photos and then how to hang them once you have the beautiful images printed and with Jamie you will definitely have beautiful images you won’t want them to just collect dust.

I was so excited to work with Jamie for our Christmas photos this year. We wanted to try something different and do some photos as a family in our matching P.J.’s, you know the ones that you usually save for Christmas Eve?  I decided to break them out early and get a little more use out of them for this session.  Plus, much easier to convince kids to put on P.J.’s than dress clothes (hint, hint).  I chose a classic red and black buffalo check P.J. set for the kids and just the top for Ben, since he already had buffalo check bottoms, as did I.  For the top I just wore a simple black tank top with cream sweater to keep it coordinating yet not looking super match-y.  Our bedroom is all decorated for Christmas which made it the perfect back drop for a photo session, we didn’t even have to travel anywhere!   My vision was to have some nice moments as a family, as well as let the kids be silly and have a little fun too.  Oh, my, goodness did they have silly moments.  I honestly don’t think i’ve ever seen the kids SO SILLY.   Thankfully Jamie was so good with them, I was getting flustered with their goofiness and she remained so chill just catching the moments.

Ironically “All is Calm” the theme for our bedroom this Christmas was anything but for this session… it mostly started off calm, but as excepted the kids went from calm to crazy pretty quickly, haha!

This was the first time Levi was ever allowed on our bed, and man did he love it.  The kids did too!

Can you handle these three faces? Cause I can’t!  This is when the silly’s really kicked in and they just wanted full bed/trampoline action.  I love seeing them just being comfortable and having fun.  That’s how a photo session should feel, I love that Jamie captured them so naturally and nothing is overly staged in these shots.

Then we had to play a little joke on the kids so we busted out the mistletoe and clearly we got the reaction we were hoping for!

And then lastly I couldn’t resist giving them my favorite holiday mugs for a little cup of cheer photo.  Yes, those are empty cups but man can those kids act… you would think there was something delicious in those mugs, right? haha  Thankfully no bedding, or white faux fur was harmed in the making of these photos.

I absolutely love how our Christmas cards turned out.  Huge thank you to Jamie Isherwood for capturing our little family, cozy and cheerful… ok and a little crazy too. But that’s how we like it around here!   She helped design and order all our cards which I was so grateful for being so busy this time of year with work obligations and just life in general it made life so much easier for me to have one less thing to worry about.

We also did another session with Jamie that took us outside our home, the next day however I’m saving those for our family and for our Christmas card.  Again we are so pleased with all the photos Jamie took and know that we will treasure them forever.  I hope you enjoyed seeing some of them and hearing about my vision/ thought process.

Huge thank you to Jamie- her website is https://jamieisherwoodphotography.com/ if you’d like to see more of her work. And give her a follow on FB and Instagram because we are hoping to collaborate on a special family portrait giveaway this spring.

Thanks for stopping by friends and Happy Holidays!

Jordan

 

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Linens & Hutch