PRIME 4th of July

This holiday is creeping right up on me. As is customary around these parts, Prime to the rescue. Here are some pretty pieces that will ship just in time for the 4th festivities.

The word “Merica” might be my least favorite part about this holiday but this vintage looking Beer tee kills me! I’d wear it. // Rebel Tee because whats America without a little resistance? // Cutest Jumpsuit of all time // Wrap Dress of my hot summer day dreams // Three Slides that couldn’t be cuter 1 // 2 // 3 // Palazzo Pants to keep you cool // A tuxedo stripe slim fit trouser that is unexpected and chic // Beautiful white one piece suit for cheap // Woven Tote to hold all the party things // Round Red Bag which I am sure everyone needs // Platform Heels with Denim detailing // Running a race with friends, heading to a family reunion, got a cute pic in mind? Matching socks galore!! // Tortoise Sunnies that are sure to flatter any face // Woven raffia heels that I am swooning over // 3 easy options for boys: Romper // Flag Tank // Tee + Short set // Nike Blazer Mids have forever been my favorite sneaker silhouette. They make them for all sizes. I’ve had this pair for several years and they never feel outdated! // Jacket Earrings that pack a punch // Two darling options for little girls: 1 // 2 //

AND NOW FOR HOSTESSING + PARTIES

4th of july hosting faves

Hot dog boat trays are the way to go for BBQs. Nothing slides off and its easy to carry around. This star print too! // This drink pool is hilarious but also genius. Also in all white if you’re wanting to re-use! No digging around for your drink and it easily holds trays of food like cheese or fruit you may want chilled. // Disposable Corn Holders // Glow Sticks — we’ve had these on hand for the last several 4th celebrations and it makes it SO much more fun! For a dance party in the street, or one year we had the kids create their own glow outfits for prizes. // The Mickey line at Target kills me with its cuteness but it also has patriotic vibes! Happy Camper Plates // Everyone needs a banner or two for tables and fences! // Patriotic napkins // Best patriotic straws // Easiest way to transport BBQ utensils to the party! Picnic Caddy // Gingham cups // Fans because you know you’re gonna need them.

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FRYday

I just got back from a week at Youth Conference which is basically a camping trip with the youth in my church ages 14-18. We started by riding our bikes to the cabin which was 50 miles away, then spent our days riding horses, fishing, paddle boarding, playing sports, card games, more eating, and all things spiritual. I hadn’t ridden a bike in years since we sold ours for our move.Fryday | Small Fry I borrowed a bike for the trip, but wasn’t able to train at all and ooh-wee was it hard! The last half of the ride pushed me in a way I haven’t been pushed maybe ever, even harder than labor since it was a lot longer. 😉 The very end was a long incline push and I remember just riding up that hill, standing up on my pedals, pushing as hard as I could with tears coming down my cheeks. Because it was hard and because it was almost over, but knowing I would make it. I could do it. It was possible and I was capable. It was such a welcome gift. Maybe the best gift of pushing through hard times and trials is the confidence in yourself and God that He will be there. Because time after time that theory proves true. I ended this week feeling so grateful for these opportunities to push myself. To really see what I am made of and connect to a higher power. I am excited for my boys to have the opportunities too and blessed to be in a church that creates them for my family! Also, 100% hooked on biking and cannot wait to get back out there, once I find myself a bike that is.

Anyway, happy Fryday and here’s what’s been in the rotation lately!Fryday | Small Fry

Reading: You can catch my Book Review for June here! But currently reading The Women Who Run With the Wolves because Nicole Richie told “me” to online. Listening to Reincarnation Blues which is a sort of post-modern take on death and super funny so far, then next up I have The Girl with Seven Names for a book club pick! As always catch any and all picks here! People always ask how I get reading in and this is how. I have a hard copy floating around the house, another audible queued up and a deadline for a book club or two. I 100% go through phases where I read like crazy and then I don’t care to for a couple months but always happier when I have a story to get lost in.

Watching: We’ve been catching up here and there on Netflix with Evil Genius (crazy) The Staircase (super slow, but interesting) and then Russ and I started the Ozarks which we both LOVE. It’s filling the Breaking Bad void, but isn’t quite as dark.

Listening: Have I ever told you that Raleigh will only allow top 40 at our house? Like if we turn on our typical Folk or Alternative Rock he gets so mad. He has to have a good pop-y beat and his favorites are That’s What I Like, HandClap, I Feel It Still, Despacito. If you know Russ and I you know that we aren’t really top 40 people, but its been so funny to see Russ voluntarily put on Ariana Grande, or “his girl Selena Gomez” (his words not mine.) Frames might be turning a new leaf. Happy to have the High Fitness playlist because you know you’ll find some Raleigh approved jams there!

Eating: I went to one of Jenna’s Essential Oil classes (@dailyessenticalco) with @happyholisticmom and she talked all about hormones. Put up a list of symptoms you might be experiencing if you have a hormone imbalance and I was pretty much all of them.  She recommended first and foremost to stop wearing perfume, to be sure and wash all produce (20 minutes in water with vinegar and Lemon oil) as two really easy ways to help lower our toxic load. Our bodies have to work extra hard to off-set all the toxins we take in which in turn messes with thyroid, and other regulators! Anyway, I started DoTerra’s LLV vitamin spread, their probiotic and digestive enzyme too while I was at it. I’ll let you know how it goes but so far my nails are noticeably stronger and my digestion is a little too regular but apparently that is how it’s supposed to work, ha!

Fryday | Small Fry

Wearing: The same thing over and over again. My favorite tees are back and I’ve worn these slides with basically everything all Summer. Catch any other linkable outfits here!

I remember when I took Small Fry over solo I had all these intentions of making it more of my personal style + fashion. I tell you what– if you want to be a fashion blogger you better be prepared to spend some money. If you’re not constantly wearing new things it makes it kind of hard to be interesting in that genre. Ha! Being on such a tight budget has been great for everything else, but boring to watch me get dressed, that’s for sure. Either way, proud of myself because it’s taken me 6 months to spend what I normally would in 1 month on clothes. That’s huge for me!

Decorating: All that money on clothes is getting sunk on house stuff and I am DYING TO SHARE IT ALL. But check back next week for a house update + video tour! We’re buying things in chunks each month and all we have left is dining chairs + island stools + a few new things for the basement bedrooms! If we weren’t already we are #absolutelybrokenow.

Anything you want to see or have questions about before I go film the tour?

Anticipating: Russ feels super confident (assuming the last couple subs — cabinets, counters, backsplash tiles — keep on schedule) that the house will be done end of July. I can’t quite describe how it feels to be so close. Hard to let yourself get excited for something that has been SO LONG in the making and still a-ways to go. Proud every day and thrilled to move into the beautiful house Russ Frame built. He has been working 7 am to 10 pm for a couple months now and my heart aches for him. Letting him do what he’s gotta do, encouraging him, being there for him, and handling my own ish + the boys has proven to be one of the most refining experiences of my life.

I hope you guys have a great weekend, thank you as always for being here! I am still weeding out some followers that were purchased before I went solo (no shade, it was mutually agreed upon at the time, but I just don’t care to keep them now) – the max I can clean out is 100 per week with the Cleaner app – so my numbers on Instagram have and will continue to go down until I get them all out and it can be super discouraging, so thank you for all your messages and interaction, it really keep the train going for me!!

Love you all!

Em

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mine + ours: books #10

JUNE BOOK PICKS!

HARD COPY: I remember very vividly when I started reading this book a couple months ago thinking THIS WOULD NEVER HAPPEN IN 2018! And I swear on the bible a couple days later I started hearing about the children separated from their parents at the border. It felt very eerie to be reading about the story while this was happening in real life.

Small Fry Book Reviews

Before We Were Yours is a historical fiction novel about the Tennessee Children’s Home Society back in 1939 — where children were actually kidnapped or taken from their parents and adopted without their consent. The story alternates between present day and 1939 and is heartbreaking. It felt cruel as a reader at times, like the author should’ve gone easier on us but it’s all based on a true story so beware that some of the content is hard to handle. I think it would be better as a hard copy because the narrator was super irritating to me. Also overly descriptive and not subtle. It felt like I was being hit over the head with foreshadowing. Otherwise very grateful to know this story even happened as I had never heard of it before!

EITHER (Audible or Hard Copy): Secrets of a Charmed Life. Besides the title and cover being so ill-fitting of the story inside I really loved this one. The story of sisters who are caught in London during the Blitz. This story gripped me and I was so anxious to finish. It does wrap a little fast for my liking but thats the only real criticism I have. I read this as a hard copy but will put it as my Audible pick this month simply because I can’t vouch for Before We Were Yours in that format.

OURS:

Always on the hunt for new titles to read with my kids! Here are the top 10 of 2018 so far according to Amazon!

Top 10 Best Selling Kids Books of 2018

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4th of July 2018

All the best patriotic apparel for the WHOLE family!

4th of July Fashion for the whole family!

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weekend deals

ASOS clearing everything out at up to 70% off // Aerie‘s amazing suits 60% off // Anthropologie is having their Summer Tag sale! // Banana Republic 50% off sale (these slides!!) COS Summer clearance up to 50% off // Cotton On Clearing Everything Out for Kids, too! // Jcrew take 30% off your entire purchase!

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two, new-to-me, shops

Of all the things I get sent to try it’s not super often that I am smitten upon arrival. Wanted to share two of those today that I think will help with the endless Summer birthday party gifts, and purchases that will bring endless fun on these longer days!

First!

OMY Maison – this whole line is SO flawless.

Basically everything is ready and waiting to be colored in! Backpacks, totes, puzzles, wall murals, whatever your heart desires!

Just use their pretty fabric markers, gel crayons, pens and pencils and get started!OMY Maison OMY Maison I particularly love this backpack for gifts because it’s something they get to customize and then proudly use after!OMY Maison OMY MaisonAnd second, made me cry as soon as I opened the box…

Park Social Soccer Co. Ball — For every soccer ball you purchase through them they send a soccer ball to a kid in need. Now until the World Cup they are sending 2 balls for every 1 purchased!

They send them to Namibia, Ghana, and several others and these kids’ smiling faces with their Park soccer ball just made my heart burst. Such a great way to give back and get a rad piece of equipment, too! Another great gift idea, if you ask me!PARK Social Soccer Co. Buy a Ball Give a Ball to Someone in Need

Hayes grabbed the cards out of the box that show the boys and girls in these different countries, playing on their dirt fields, big smiles on their faces. It made such an impact ton him, I am forever grateful to companies like Park SSC for making giving back easy!!

You can buy their awesome ball here!

modern swivel chairs

We’ve started ordering furniture for the house and I thought it would be fun (maybe helpful to some?) if I shared the process here! I’ve heard lots of good advice on furnishing a new house, but here’s why I can’t really take any of that advice, ha!

The company we worked with on our floors, Marazzi, have been so amazing and generous  AND PATIENT with us and they’re shooting film and video in our house at the end of the Summer. For marketing materials etc, which we are totally happy to do! That means that I don’t have time to slowly furnish each room, we need the house to be ready to go within a few weeks of finishing. Pressure’s on right?Modern Swivel Chairs Under500

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // //  

With that and our family still being so young, and perhaps not complete, that effects my choices on things, too. For instance: after lots of experience, we won’t do anything but leather for our couches. They hold up so much better and clean up like new each time. So starting with that piece of the puzzle (this is the couch we bought!) helped everything else fall into place for this room!

I like to start out by looking at the elements to the room I know for sure. Our chandelier that I picked out basically 2 years ago, the camel leather couch, and then that the arm chairs needed to swivel (to swivel out toward the TV or inward for conversation and the look I wanted for the room). To contrast the color and texture from the couch, we hunted for upholstered options with color. The bones of our house are ALL black and white or neutral so bringing color into the space with the furniture felt like a non-negotiable. Light colored chairs seemed like they’d show wear/spots/stains easier so I wanted to go darker. The power of deduction is real and has made decision making so much easier! Sometimes knowing what you don’t want is more helpful than knowing what you do!

I scoured the web and found a ton of options. I was thinking I’d need to spend $800+ to get what I wanted, but then I stumbled on this chair for $250 from Target I was like, DONE.  So impressed with the quality, and my number one priority with design in my house is that my kids can live in, on, around it. When you have young kids, too fussy or expensive just means more anxiety and stress for all. I don’t expect upholstered pieces to last forever and at this price I don’t need them too, either. Win win!

If you want to keep an eye on things as I pin them I save nearly everything here, too! Here are a bunch of options both under and over $500, if you’re needing more ideas!

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summer beauty essentials

Summer calls for a whole new set of beauty products and these are my absolute favorites! Let it be known any I starred were recs from @thebeyoutybureau so let’s give credit where credit is due, shall we?Summer Beauty Musts

SHAVING + TANNING

*L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil — This is the most luxe creamy oil that I keep on hand for shaving. I get a closer shave then even with Creamo Cream which used to be my #1 for a smooth leg shave. This smells amazing and makes my whole body feel super soft so its an awesome add! Also let it be known I am still using my first bottle which I’ve had for a year.

*Exfoliating Towels — My husband LOVES these too, but such a quick and easy tool and you can reach your whole back with ease. Perfect to get ready for a spray tan.

Purlisse Coconut Oil + Coffee Scrub — I am obsessed with this stuff. My skin feels AMAZING after I don’t even need to moisturize.  I’m told coffee helps tighten skin and eliminate cellulite. Sure, sign me up!

Rodial Skin Tint with SPF in Hamptons — I do my best to not get any sun on my actual face, neck and even chest. I’ve just seen that skin age so much in the last few years! It’s quite a stark difference in color between face and body so this tinted moisturizer is a must. Instantly adds color, and SPF and has great coverage for little effort. Perfect in a pinch!

Miracle Oil – ACO Ceritfied Organic by Divine — This whole line is stellar. I am so impressed. I will never run out of this Miracle Oil though. So good for adding life to dry skin.

Versa Spa Gradual Tanning Butter + Tanning Mitt — I’ve tried a lot of sprays and have yet to find anything not streak. This butter is the greatest thing and its buildable every day until you get where you want to be. I never streak and it’s super easy to put on. Grab a mitt and no one will even know. Scouts honor!

Brush-On Mineral SPF — So nice for on top of a full face of make-up, easy touch-ups. Doesn’t even feel like anything is on. I so much prefer this to lotion SPF. Such a good price too!

Lifeguard Hat or a Roll-up Sun Visor — Do what you gotta do but I’ll stay in the shade thank you very much.

Waterproof Mascara for Sensitive Eyes by La Roche Posay — pretty self-explanatory but this stuff is great!

PMD – $25 off right now! My skin seems to age so much more rapidly in the Summertime, I love being able to do this weekly to offset some of the damage, even as hard as I try to avoid the sun!

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer and Setting Spray — When things get sweaty, these two will keep everything you’ve got in place

Anything to add? Always ready to try new must-haves!

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modern father’s day ideas

10 Rad Ideas for Father’ Day from around the web!

Printable Cards via Damask Love

Modern Father's Day Ideas

A printed picture wall fit for a king. (From the archives!)

Modern Father's Day Ideas

Turn a paper plate into the Best Dad Award with this printable!

Modern Father's Day IdeasPrintable you can color any which way!Modern Father's Day IdeasToolbox Printable Modern Father's Day IdeasDad’s Emergency StashModern Father's Day IdeasTreat label printable with a killer recipe, too!Modern Father's Day IdeasThese papers you have the kids fill out or answer are one of my favorite things to get on Mother’s Day so going to do these for sure for Father’s Day I love that she thought of grandpa too! Find them here.Modern Father's Day Printable

Tiny Me has a printable suite with everything you can think of for Father’s Day! So many awesome options. I love the menu idea and being able to pick what they want to eat!Modern Father's Day Ideas

I loved this idea especially, I am going to recreate it with my kids and I’ll let you know how it ends up!

Modern Father's Day Ideas

Best of luck in your Father’s Day planning!! Two weeks away!

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summer morning routine printable!

Viewing on a MOBILE device? Click HERE to get the direct download!

This one has come highly requested and I think, thanks to Kinzie (@kinzco), we really delivered for you guys today! On this, the last day of school (for my kids) I give you the Summer Morning Routine! Kinzie of Kinz.co – amazing graphic designer, branding genius, all around babe created today’s printable to accompany this system and I’ll give all the details for those who want to know or you can just download that sucker and get started at the bottom of this post!Summer Morning Routine Printable

There is a blank version or a filled out version that I use — I kept it super vague so you can decide time limits, define what each thing really means for your family, and your family culture. Just know: this system took some time to really show it’s value. You have planting years where you’re implementing a system and really having to repeat yourself, teach them, enforce and stick to it. It does take time to feel like it’s worth it, but it will be worth it, I promise! And luckily most kids really thrive on a routine so they’ll probably be the ones enforcing it on you! The day my kids woke up, got dressed, did all their chores and then came and found me was one of the prouder days of my life! Get this hard laminated, dry erase marker or a clipboard for each kid and keep your Summer morning sanity!!Summer Chore Chart

For those who want to know how we do it at my house, keep on reading!

GROUND RULES

Very basic ground rules at my house are that we all pick up after ourselves — always. So throughout the day messes are getting cleaned up as we go along instead of having to do big blitzes which I’ve found my kids are too tired at the end of the day to really give me any energy in that arena. So we have to do it as we go! Saturdays they deep clean their bedroom and bathroom, so it’s just maintaining during the week.

Second, my kids aren’t always motivated by screen time. Some days they don’t even use their screen time, so I needed a way to incentivize on days they don’t care to. Hence the fill in the blank “Before We _____”. It might be “have screen time” or it might be “go to the pool”, “play with friends” or whatever fun activity we have planned for that day. If your kids like knowing the agenda for the day, that’s an easy place to keep it for them!

Blank Summer Chart | Small Fry

So no screens of any kind (TV too!) are coming on until this list is done at our house, and then they get 1 hour for their video games, or any YouTube videos about said video games. 😉 I’m more flexible on TV time, but I am stiff as board about devices.

LDS / Religious Ideas: My kids know that making their bed is also the time for them to say a prayer. I didn’t want to include prayer on this as I know it’s not everyone’s bag, but an idea if you want it incorporated or you could always write it next to that! We do a more hefty spiritual thought/reading at night before bed, and that’s on me so not included here. Where’s mama’s chart?

MAKE IT YOUR OWN

Most of these on the chart are obvious – the ones where you can interpret with your kids and also how involved YOU are with it are:

Summer School Work – we do 30 minutes of Workbooks (I buy these) or you can also print off all kinds of worksheets for free! Then they also read for 30 minutes. We have ABC Mouse and also our school uses an online reading program called Lexia! To encourage actual book/story reading I pay them $5 for every chapter book they read. We live across the street from a library so we do that every week or so, so they have lots of options!

Chore of the Day – It might be the same every day, it might rotate, they can draw from a jar, it could be a big chore (clean the kitchen) or smaller (wipe the mirror) depending on age and ability. At our house, we look around the house and make a list of what needs to be done and they choose the one they want to do. I like that they can see the different needs of the house, but still pick what appeals to them. I hope it helps them understand all that’s involved in housekeeping, and to spot what might need to be done instead of always having to be told. “Seeing the need” is a life skill I hope I send them into the world having mastered! They could do the same chore every single day, and there is great value in really knowing how to do it well, but there are so many other skills to learn!

Make Something – another way you could implement a jar of ideas! This could be art, cooking, writing a story, it is creativity in whatever realm appeals to them!

Outside Exercise – Again you can choose the time limits, and getting outside to be active could WITH you – a bike ride, a walk, yoga, push ups, etc. Or you can send them out more independently, too. I’ll let them give me a workout to do with them and they love that.

One Good Thing. This term came from a book we have by my friend Jill about a girl who wants to make a difference, but feels overwhelmed. So her dad tells her to just pick one good thing to do each day. My kids love the book so we talk about One Good Thing a lot. Again, I don’t give them any parameters because I want them to See the Need. And then tell me about what they did after. We discuss how it could be for a specific person, for the family, for a neighbor or friend, for the environment, the community, for themselves. I love seeing how their brains work for this one, so there’s no wrong answers for me!

I hope this helps and huge thanks for Kinzie for the darling design!

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