Friday Love 10.5.18

Hey hey there! Yay for the first Friday of October! We were out of town all last weekend so I am looking forward to some much-needed relaxation this time around. The only items on our agenda so far are painting rocks and pottery (from Sophie’s pottery class), baking our delicious apple oatmeal bars and watching Halloween movies. There is a global food fair going on in the town next to us on Saturday that’s sounds interesting but, hanging at home and getting caught back up for the rest of this busy month may win out. We really have a lot going on but the weather has cooled slightly and I’m not mad about that at all, we even got rain this week! Let’s dive into some Friday Love!

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Jazzy’s Quinceneara

We attended our first quinceneara last weekend. It was a lot of fun! Our kids could not come due to the high number of guests so we got a date night of sorts. Lots of yummy food, photo booth fun and a night cap with friends, it was a great time. I forgot to mention the best part, we got to dress up! Since I tend to live in athleisure type outfits, this exciting, Nordstrom to the rescue ūüôā


San Jose’s Little Italy Street Festival

We stayed at my sister-in-law’s house over the weekend so she could watch our girls while we attended the quinceneara. We decided it would be fun to check out the Little Italy Street Festival that was going on in San Jose on Sunday. We used to go before we moved to Tracy so it was fun to do it again. Lots of great Italian food and wine!

Downtown Decorations

Our little downtown has been fully decorated for Fall and it is so cute! I take a picture of the girls every October 1st and we decided to have them pose amongst the big pumpkins out on display. The shop windows are painted as well, it just looks so nice! Good job Tracy!

Pumpkin Flavored Cookies 

Sophie and I baked pumpkin spice cookies last Friday and OMG were they good. We added a simple glaze and we literally almost finished them that day. A friend brought over a ginormous box of pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on Tuesday and I’ve had two to three a day ever since. I am the biggest fan of pumpkin.


umpkin Buns

Yesterday was a spirit day at Lyla’s school and the theme was buns vs. mohawks. We chose to do a pumpkin bun of course!! I had so much fun doing this style to the girls hair, it came out really good. Of course little sister wanted one too. We volunteer in Lyla’s class every Thursday so it worked out great for Sophie to match her sister. Perfect hair for pumpkin season.


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How is it the last Wednesday of September already?? I started reading my favorite blogs this morning and couldn’t believe it was already time for another What’s Up Wednesday. I wasn’t prepared ahead of time at all for this post but enjoyed writing it last month and wanted to do it again so here we go…

What We’re Eating this week…

Monday –¬†Ground turkey tacos, corn

Tuesday –¬†Grilled pork chops, Annie’s organic mac-n-cheese, broccoli

Wednesday – Spaghetti (zoodle pasta for the hubby & I), caesar salad. This is our busy night. Both girls have activities pretty much back-to-back so whatever I cook has to be quick and easy and not require grilling help from my hubby.

Thursday –¬†Teriyaki steak, white rice, asparagus

Friday – Homemade pizza night!

Saturday –¬†We are going to our very first Quinceneara so we will eat whatever is served at the reception.

What I’m Reminiscing about…

Last Halloween. My girls love to look at old pictures and we always have so much fun looking at last year’s holiday photos.

What I’m loving…

My new makeup from Ulta! I talked about it in my Friday Love post last week and I can’t say enough good things about these products. I had been using the same type of makeup for years and was a tad bit nervous to try something new but I’m so glad I did.


What We’ve been up to…

Normal life. School, activities, work, errands, rushing around and trying to get in bed by 8pm (that’s a challenge every night).

What I’m dreading…

The sick season! My kids are generally pretty healthy but we got hit hard last year and I’m dreading that happening again. It’s pretty hard to avoid when you have two young children. Prayers for health!

What I’m working on…

A “How to style your Fall family photos” post. We take family pictures in the Fall every year and choosing our outfits is one of my favorite things to do. I admit the post has gotten kind of long but I’m looking back at a few years at photos and going over how it was to select the outfits each year. I’ve really enjoyed working on this and can’t wait to share it.

What I’m excited about…

October! My girls excitement for Halloween is unparalleled and we have so many fun things planned for next month. Our annual pumpkin patch visit, Bass Pro Shop for pictures, downtown trick-or-treating, Dia de los Muertos day, this list is endless.

What I’m watching…

More House Hunters. Beach Hunters. Beachfront Bargain Hunt. Any and everyone home show on HGTV, lol. We’ve also started the new season of Kids Baking Championship, it’s so good! My girls love to bake and say they want to open a sister bakery when they grow up so this show is a family favorite.

What I’m reading…

Not much! I feel bad even saying that but it’s the truth. I really need to get back to reading before bed instead of looking at my phone.

What I’m wearing…

Pretty much the same things I wear most weeks except I’ve had to wear shorts, skirts¬† and dresses this week because its so hot. I’m really over wearing shorts.

What I’m doing this weekend…

Going to San Jose! We are all looking forward to getting out of town for the weekend and heading back to where we lived for many years before moving to Tracy and where my hubby was born and raised. We are going to a friend’s daughter’s Quinceneara on Saturday. I have never been to one and am excited to see what it’s all about. We are staying with my sister-in-law and I’m happy my girls will get some quality time with family. We are also thinking of going to a local Italian festival on Sunday before we head home. We used to go back when we lived there but haven’t been since Lyla was a baby.

What I’m looking forward to next month…

HALLOWEEN!! The pumpkin patch, the festivals, the cooler weather, Lyla’s school festivities, dressing up, just all of it. October is so much fun!

What else is new…

Not too much. Life is chugging along as usual.



When I say give me all the pumpkin spice, I mean GIVE ME ALL the pumpkin SPICE!!! I love anything and everything pumpkin and will pick-up almost all of the pumpkin flavored treats I see, I literally can’t help it. Of course I love the PSL but pumpkin cookies, loafs, donuts, bars, cereal, oatmeal, popcorn, ice cream, bundt cakes, poke cakes, PIE!!! I really do love it all.

Friday Love 9.21.18

Here we are again! I feel like this week just flew by.¬† It was another busy one for us full of play rehearsals, acting classes, pottery classes, doctor appointments, and just life in general! I’m back again for another edition of …

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School Pictures

There is nothing I love more than a sweet school picture! My big girl Lyla is in 4th grade this year and I got her school pictures back this week. She is the so sweet, so smart and so loving and growing up way too fast for my liking! We are both very happy with how her picture turned out this year.


Honey Garlic Shrimp

We’ve been in a dinner rut lately and after perusing Pinterest, I decided to make honey garlic shrimp on Tuesday. The marinade was super simple to put together, it cooked in about 5 minutes and it was so, so good. Both my girls loved it. I followed this recipe to a T except my hubby added some fish sauce. I served it with rice and broccolini. I will definitely be making this again.




It’s been a while since I bought anything from Groupon (like years) but this week, I made three purchases… in just a week! The deals were too good to pass up. I got an email at the beginning of the week with a 50% off code. I used it for a month of unlimited gymnastics classes for my younger daughter. I ended up paying only $14! Then, a day later they sent me a thank you email with a code for $10 off. I used that for four passes to a local museum and it was only $1.50!!! I also grabbed the Starbucks $5 for $10. I can never pass up a good deal and these were pretty good, thank you Groupon!!



Edible Arrangements Smoothies

An Edible Arrangements store just opened up in our town. I’ve never thought of them as anything more than a delivery service of beautiful fresh fruit bouquets. Well I was wrong! We got a coupon for a buy one get on free smoothie, and again, because I can’t pass up a coupon or good deal, I took my girls there yesterday to get a smoothie. I totally forgot to take a picture of the smoothies but the they were good. You could choose off a small menu of flavors or create your own. My girls both opted to create their own and got strawberry banana and orange pineapple. Two smoothies for $5, score!


Halloween decor

With one of our favorite holidays quickly approaching, I’m naturally starting to think about Halloween decorations. Now I don’t go all out by any means – if I had a bigger budget to work with, I totally would BUT I do the best I can with what I can and love to decorate our home. My girls are pretty much obsessed with this holiday. They really enjoy the decorations, which makes me love them even more. These pictures are from last year and I added in a few things after I took these but they pretty much show how I decorate for Halloween minus the front door and yard.


One of my favorite areas to decorate is behind the kitchen sink. The ledge is the perfect place to display lots of fun stuff. I had completely forgot about this large Happy Halloween sign the year before but remembered to pull it out last year and was really happy with how it looked.

Jars of pumpkins, skulls and black and orange glitter balls, with a few sparkly silver spiders just hanging out.

A close-up of the cutest yet slightly spooky little scarecrow ready to trick-or-treat. I picture him walking in a forest of the black sparkly trees with fog pooling all around.¬†The pom pom garland actually came with package of bat garland from the dollar spot at Target. I didn’t really like how the pom poms looked with the bats so I strung it around the tree and love how it looks. The RIP gravestone is a picture holder but I also never really liked it for that use. I saw some small gravestones at the dollar spot just this past weekend. I think they would look great in this little area.

To the right of the sink are these great little shelves. I put the girls Halloween pictures from the Bass Pro Shop up here last year. I love looking at them while doing the dishes, brings back happy memories.

Halloween subway art, a candy corn candy dish and a sweet pumpkin made by Sophie.

This jack-o-lantern windsock was passed down to me by mom. I remember this being out every year during Halloween when I was growing up,. We used to always hang it on our front porch. I love having it in my home now.


I bought the Happy Halloween sign from HomeGooods probably four years ago. It’s wooden and has held up wonderfully. I bought the small haunted house last year for Sophie. She loved it so much and the colors go with the sign perfectly. I switch out the flowers in my vase for black and orange sparkly leaves from Michaels, and also add a variety of pumpkins in a variety of colors and textures.

Living/dining room

Top of stairs – just one teeny, tiny jack-o-lantern!

Kids rooms

I keep it pretty simple with a door hanging and a small pumpkin in each room. Sophie has a small Halloween pillow too, I’m hoping to find a good one for Lyla this year.

Girls bathroom

Two small Halloween globes, new buckets to store their toothbrushes, etc. They always really love to put up the stickers from the Dollar Spot or other places on their mirror/shower. We also have the cutest little Haunted House wallflower, a family favorite.


This is one of my favorite rooms in our house, especially during the holidays. This candy corn banner is just so cute and I love to add in their holiday artwork.

I hope you enjoyed our decorations as much as we do! Having this to reference each year helps me so much when I pull our decorations out and have no idea where to put them!

xo JRS

Fall decor

It’s Fall y’all! The holiday season is upon us and decorating my house is my absolute favorite thing to do! I should say “our” favorite thing to do because my girls love to help me. Walking around my house and seeing all the reds, oranges, leaves and pumpkins just makes me smile.

Another great thing about blogging my decor is that I have a place to reference next year when I’ll have forgotten where everything goes. So many times I take out my stuff and cannot remember at all where I put it the year prior. I know I could find a new place for everything but I’m a creature of habit, and I love tradition.

I’ll start in the kitchen. The area behind my sink has a great little ledge that is the perfect place for glass jars full of pumpkins, acorns and leaves, vases with fall foliage and pumpkin-scented candles. I think everything here is from Michaels, besides the candle, from Bath & Body Works of course.

There is another ledge in our kitchen where we keep our wine and fruit, and that’s home to one of my favorite pumpkins.

Next up is the fireplace and mantel in the family room. I really love the brick of the fireplace, it’s the perfect backdrop for pumpkins.

This is our half bath downstairs off the family room. I found the print online for free and I’m obsessed. It really completed the space.

Now off to the living room! At our old house, I used to put fall garland on the mantle but now that we have the TV there, it doesn’t really work. I wrapped the staircase with it and I absolutely love it there.

I have small pumpkins here and there in the living room, keeping it simple.

The dining room is simple as well. A burlap runner with a fall candle, and a pumpkin can vase with fall flowers.

Going upstairs, I have this lovely ceramic pumpkin on the shelving at the top of the stairs. It used to be an air freshener, you poured oil in the hole and it soaked the sticks but it’s a few years old so the oil has dried up. Still looks great as decor though!

Onto my girls rooms and their bathroom. They each have one pumpkin in their room – Sophie, a small sparkly one, and Lyla, a medium-sized velvet one. I love them both. The bathroom has fall-themed stickers for the mirror and a small case with fall flowers. We do the stickers for every holiday. They love to help put them up.

And last is the playroom, one of my favorite rooms in the house. There is a gallery wall that is princess-themed but I have one frame that I change out for holidays. Normally there is a princess subway art print but for Fall, I change it to a happy autumn print. There are two pumpkins on the mantle, one glitter and one homemade, and a shopkins pumpkin on the table, perfect for my shopkins-lovin’ girls.

A look back – Halloween 2014

With Halloween quickly approaching (this Saturday! ekkk!), I thought it would be fun to look back at last year’s festivities. Halloween has become Lyla’s favorite holiday (that is until Christmas arrives) so I do my best and try to make it really special for her. Halloween fell on a Friday last year, so I surprised her with a Halloween themed breakfast, a balloon, card, and a fun, little message on the chalkboard.



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We had been watching the forecast like crazy because it had been raining on and off earlier in the week and rain was

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I’m back!

Wow, I can’t believe its been close to a year since I’ve done a post. I’ve thought about this blog pretty much every single day during that time and often wondered, why I couldn’t just sit down and write a post? Truth is, once the holidays hit, things in our world got pretty crazy. I underestimated¬†how busy things would get at Lyla’s school, I underestimated how difficult it would be to have a child with a birthday the day before Christmas Eve, and I really underestimated how hard it would be to watch my parents move back to Florida. I really focused all my time and energy went into my kids and my family and my blog just wasn’t a priority in my life during this time. But I missed it. I really did. I would literally write out posts in my head but just never sit down and write them out. I really hope to get back into a normal posting routine and continue to share my world.

That being said, I have so much to catch-up on! So much has happened in our lives since last Thanksgiving. Some good, some sad but so much happy! I hope I can maybe do a quick (yeah right) recap of all that’s gone on in the last nine months. It feels good to be back!!

Weekend recap.

I picked a rather normal, uneventful weekend to do a recap of but you know what, sometimes that is what I love reading about most on other blogs, simple, ordinary, day-to-day life. My parents stayed with us the weekend prior and we went to Tracy’s Taste of the Valley festival and were pretty busy all weekend so we knew we wanted to take it easy this weekend.¬†Sometimes those are the best weekends, the ones with no plans. Friday morning started out with my little baby looking way too big. I swear, the times goes by even faster with number two, what a sweetheart!


Friday afternoon, Lyla, Sophie and I headed to downtown Tracy. We had an amazing drink at this adorable coffee shop when we first moved here and I promised Lyla we would go back one day. When I walked out of my bedroom wearing a hat, Lyla said, “Oh, I’m going to wear my hat too so we can match,” um, heart melting! Hearing things like that makes me so happy. When I was little, I used to love to match my mom. I’ll be sad when these days are over. Here we are in our hats ready to head downtown.


My hubby took my car to work that day so we got to cruise around in his car, a Chevy¬†Volt. It was my first time driving an electric, hybrid car and I was a little hesitant. Maybe I thought it would drive differently or something, I don’t know what it was but I was scared. Of course, there was no reason to be. I actually loved driving his car. I missed the space of mine (I have a GMC Terrain) but it was fast, zippy and used no gas, winning! Plus, it looked all futuristic inside.



Our first stop was Baristas.We discovered this place back in July when we went to the Farmers Market downtown and Lyla had to use the restroom. It was super hot that day so we ducked into¬†the closest place we could find to use¬†the restroom. We ended up ordering the best drink ever, the strawberry lemonade blended. We are loyal Starbucks customers and I mean loyal but we just love this place. It’s adorable and everything we’ve ever tried there has been really, really good. I love the feel of it, its got a good vibe and is decorated so cute. Lyla, of course, ordered her strawberry lemonade blended and I decided on a pumpkin caramel nut mocha blended. I never order these type of coffee drinks because I know they are typically very high in calories but I am so glad I did. This drink was amazing. I keep raving to my hubby that he has to try this place. I cannot wait to go back and try more items off the extensive menu. We’ve only tried the baked goods but the lunch food looks great as well.


We walked around downtown for a bit, stopping in a few of the stores there and browsing around. Lyla is the best window shopping buddy. She asked me to take her picture in what she called the “secret garden” – here she is. It was getting pretty hot so we decided to head home.


We made a quick stop at Safeway and Sophie was being her typical, smiley self. She has such a happy persona ūüôā


Sometimes John gets home later on Friday nights so the girls and I went ahead and ate dinner. I snapped this pic and sent it to him to let him know his dinner was ready and waiting, nice and warm. I made balsamic chicken in the crock pot and it came out so good.

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Saturday morning came and Lyla, who started to complain of a sore throat on¬†Friday, woke up feeling really sick as did I. It was such a bummer because we had plans to work around the house this weekend and I was in no shape to be doing that. We did go to Costco for the first time since we’ve lived in Tracy (exciting!) and I’m happy to report that it was barely crowded! Costcos in San Jose are notorious for being insanely crowded all the time, especially on the weekends and it was pretty crazy to see one that wasn’t that busy, especially on a Saturday. I love going to Costco. We aren’t regular Costco shoppers so when we do go, I love to browse around and go up and down every aisle, much to my hubby’s delight.


Sophie has only recently started to ride in the cart so it was really exciting to see both of my girls in the double cart – Lyla is smothering her sister as usual – lol.


Can anyone guess where we went to dinner on Saturday night? Does the picture below give you any hints?


Yep, Five Guys! I texted John on Thursday and said, I’m craving a cheeseburger bad and we are getting one this weekend. I knew that would ¬†make my hubby happy because he loves burgers and I only eat them every so often. We eat very, very healthy during the week and I workout 4-5 times a week so when I crave a burger, I let myself enjoy one, everything in moderation is my motto. Boy was it good!



Saturday night I started to feel really sick and I hate being sick. I absolutely cannot stand it. I’m a go, go, go type of person and I don’t like it when I can’t do all the things I’m used to doing. I was also planning to go on a long, solo run Sunday morning and I was so bummed my throat starting to hurt really bad. Sophie also started showing the same symptoms as Lyla and she was not happy about it. She has never been sick in her eight months of life and she was just super fussy and had a hard time getting to sleep that night. We were all hanging out in our bedroom and Lyla asked me to take some pictures of her and her girl, her mini Lyla, in their matching pajamas. This made me smile even though I was feeling so bad.


Sophie slept horribly Saturday night and so did I. I woke up Sunday feeling like I had been hit by a truck so my plans of going on a long run and doing some yard work were replaced with sitting on the couch and trying to rest… kind of a hard thing to do when you have two kids. My sweet hubby went out to Jamba Juice to get smoothies for Lyla and I. Normally, I make smoothies for us almost every day but we were all out of frozen fruit and I was not in the mood to make anything. Thankfully my appetite returned around dinner time and John made an amazing meal. We had picked up the most beautiful piece of Halibut at Costco on Saturday and he prepared it just wonderfully.


So there you have it, our weekend recap! We were home a lot since the girls and I were sick and as¬†I type this, I’m still sick and nowhere near feeling better. I hope to shake this virus soon!




Dress: Carters via Carters Store, Headband: Nordstrom. I figured since I did an OOTD post for both myself and Lyla, I had to do one for Sophie. Today, she picked out her own clothes. Some days I have an exact idea of what I want her to wear and others, I have no idea. On those days, I’ll hold her in front of her closet and let her pick (i.e. whatever she lunges for first) her own outfit. It’s great that she helps me out with these big decisions. She must have been in a dress mood today. This one is super cute. Its navy blue, cotton and a size six months (she is eight and it still fits, score!). What a doll!








Skirt and top both Calson via Nordstrom, Shoes: Isla via Nordstrom Rack. This is one of my comfy yet cute mom outfits. The tank and skirt are so soft and super comfortable. The skirt has a drawstring and zipper detail, and the tank is simple but it fits really well and has a seam down the center in the back. I love simple details like that. My style has changed so much since becoming a stay at home mom of two. I still want to look put together but I have to be comfortable. I don’t wear much jewelry these days because Sophie grabs it, pulls it and eats it and as much as I love earrings, I don’t want one pulled out of my ear. I LOVE these shoes. I tried to get a close-up of the sides because I love the double strap and the gold detail on the front gives them a little something and you cannot go wrong with leopard. I’m still working on the art of the “selfie” – I tried to get Lyla to take my picture but she wasn’t having it.¬†