FRYday: Emily

Happy FRYday everyone! For those of you who asked for the full article from our Somerset Life magazine feature, we can finally share it! Here’s the full essay I had the opportunity to write if you’d like:

There are also a lot of forces against us saying that parenthood is too hard, unglamorous, pedestrian even -- and maybe it is.  But it is also magical, heart-wrenching, life-bettering, and world-shaking. It is simultaneously boring and cerebral, repetitive and pull-your-hair-out challenging, simple and complex.  It is quiet and calm, and everything all at once.  It is a tug on your pant leg and a stretch of your limits. And it is worth celebrating.

When we started Small Fry last Fall, we had no idea what would happen. We knew we had a supportive network of friends and family who would be on board, but would anyone else care? What would even talk about day in and day out? How fast would we run out of inspiration? What would it take to make time away from our family worth it? We decided to talk about it over dinner, because our best ideas come when we’ve got a fork in one hand and a pen in the other.

Small Fry Someserset Magazine Feature

We tossed around ideas, and discussed one another’s talents and passions. Nicole, and amazing photographer, could turn our projects and recipes into something magazine worthy. Jenna with her design know-how and detail-oriented eye, could take our posts to the next level. Emily, with a passion for writing and words could give our ideas meaning and girth. While all those things were great and would certainly provide us with enough content to support a blog platform we just weren’t sold on it. Then that lightbulb moment hit. If we based all of our interests, passions, and talents around our number-one passion, our number-one priority — our families, our baby boys — then that would be a blog worth writing. 

We all had chills, tears filled our eyes, (tears still come when we talk about it to this day), and we knew that Small Fry wasn’t just an idea, but could be a reality.  If we did it the right way, it could be a way for us to help support our families, to start college funds, and to have wonderful opportunities. All while talking about our own kids? That was going to be easy! What parent can’t do that ad nauseam?

From there we wrote our mission, and signed it off and published it to our little blog with a readership of three: “We’ve been told this season of our lives is fleeting. What if we could say that we soaked it all in, let it envelope us, looked into those big beautiful eyes of our children every morning and said “let me show you something amazing today!”

Small Fry Someserset Magazine Feature

Quickly we realized that our mission to celebrate parent and childhood was a worthy cause for more than just our blood relatives, and we found ourselves with an amazing and supportive readership.  We’ve had incredible highs with a week focused on adoption journeys, a viral YouTube video, partnerships with amazing companies, and so many loving and inspiring comments from readers around the world.  We have found that we need to consciously commit and recommit ourselves to our purpose and not let the gilded appeal of consumerism take over. We think our site is great, as we should, but we also see where we need to improve.  We stress and toil over our missteps and are pretty hard on ourselves. 

As a trio we’ve fought for our ideas — really fought, compromised, made up, wanted to quit, been proud, excited, surprised, laughed until we cried. We love and respect one another, we believe in ourselves and our endeavors, and that’s all that matters.  We have set the bar high for ourselves, but every day when someone, parent or not, comes to our space, leaves encouraging words, or says “I’m going to try that!: to something we’ve said, a photo we took, or and idea we had, that’s reason enough to keep up the pace.

There are also a lot of forces against us saying that parenthood is too hard, unglamorous, pedestrian even — and maybe it is.  But it is also magical, heart-wrenching, life-bettering, and world-shaking. It is simultaneously boring and cerebral, repetitive and pull-your-hair-out challenging, simple and complex.  It is quiet and calm, and everything all at once.  It is a tug on your pant leg and a stretch of your limits. And it is worth celebrating.



Easter photos by Lindsey Orton 

Family Bugaboo photos by Cee Bee

all other photos by our lady Nicole.


We have a guest DIY over on Inspired by This! Catch how to make these super easy initial Helvetica pillows here.Helvetica Initial Pillows

We’ve got the most insane week next week with a big event with Cricut and then the Alt Summit conference. We will be posting as usual, but wanted to let any Alt Summit attendees know where will be during the conference so we can meet!

We’ll be moderating a roundtable on Blog Ethics on both Thursday (4:30pm) and Friday (9:30am)! Then on Friday we’ll be hosting a take-home DIY in Cricut’s Craft Lounge at 10:30 am right after our roundtable. We’ll be sure to share pictures of all the fun (and hard work, too) when it’s all said and done, and follow along via Instagram @smallfryblog. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

Small Fry Films ♡ JCPenney

Are you on-board the JCPenney love train? Their brand revamp a few years ago has converted us and we were so excited to work with them with their exclusive Joe Fresh collaboration! For the longest time JCP felt like our little secret, but the more we share “Oh it’s from JCPenney!” the more we realize, everyone thinks it’s their little secret, too! Here is a little stop motion created by Jessica Peterson (she shot over 400 stills to get thirty seconds!)

The back story with this film is so sweet. These two have been inseparable best friends since they were tiny! Their moms brought them in and confirmed that even though they now live several cities away from each other, it doesn’t stop them from insisting on playing together weekly! (It helps that their moms are best friends, too!) They were so fun to work with and giggled uncontrollably at our concept: “You magically change clothes and then look surprised!” We love how versatile the Joe Fresh line is and if you watch closely you’ll see just how many pieces can be unisex!

This post feels a little anti-climatic as we shot this stop motion over 2 1/2 months ago! We’ve learned some dreams are bigger than others and making this one a reality took some serious work on the back-end. We hope you will still enjoy a look at Joe Fresh for JCPenney’s Fall 2013 line, and check out the amazing deals and fashions they have to offer currently.

See all our films here, if you want your heart warmed, check out this one we made especially for moms.

share: 4

mad for plaid

When we asked everyone via our Facebook page what you’d like to see more of, fashion and style was the most popular answer! We love it too, so we totally get it. After 30+ posts in our Head to Toe series, our boys are, understandably, over modeling. So, we’re excited about our fashion round-ups this year, having more flexibility to add girl’s clothes, and the boys excited about the break! We’ll be picking from our favorite trends, upcoming holidays and special occasions, and of course, if you ever have a concept you’re in the mood for, just let us know!

Today we’re paying homage to our love affair with plaid. This year it has shown up in unexpected ways and here’s some of our favorites!

mad for plaid round up for kids

1. This one-piece looks amazing for sleep or as an undergarment for extra bitter days // $24.99

2. A sweet little buffalo plaid bow // $5.00

3. A Madewell plaid umbrella for the unreliable weather. // $29.50

 4. A Trooper Trapper Hat that’s as warm as it is fun to say. // $20+
5. We love the retro look of these Aigle boots! They have a few less expensive (and also less plaid) versions here. // $84
6. The one piece in blue, because if you’re like our kids, color matters. A lot. // $24.99
7. A padded printed bomber is a rad unisex option that adds a little edge to the traditional print. // $29.99
8. Another killer deal from JcPenney, the plaid toggle jacket. //$16.99
9. This 100% cotton tartan throw looks so cozy, and something you could use for picnics, a campfire, or movie night.
10. All she needs for this skirt is a yellow sweater, matching jacket, knee high socks and a black beret and your girl is channeling Cher Horowitz in the best way. // $15.99
11. A plaid lumberjack handmade plush toy? Yes please! // $30
Find more looks and shops, and shop some looks all under our Threads label!

kid cleanse

We weren’t sure it could be done, but Jenna found a way! She held a kid-friendly cleanse at her house after Christmas to detox some of that unavoidable Holiday sugar intake. Here’s what she did:
get kid's eating healthy with a kid cleanse“After Christmas I remember looking at my husband and saying ‘What is wrong with our kids!?!’ They weren’t sleeping well and they were EXTRA whiny and irritable. I was so frustrated with their behavior and kept racking my brain to think what it could be. Was it the presents, the traveling, the endless activity? Perhaps, but those factors had died down and the whining continued and I was left perplexed. As if on cue my son comes waltzing in the kitchen with three caramels in his hands from residual neighbor gifts that seemed to be multiplying on our counter and I knew it was time to do a family cleanse. Personally, I have done several in the past where you are on liquids only for three days but I needed a kid-friendly version. So here is a way I found to do a three day cleanse that kept my children nourished, strong, and happy.  My goal here was obviously not to have them lose pounds or trim up, they already have the metabolism of their dad (annoying) but rather to reset their bodies and get the junk out of their system so we could start fresh in 2014 making healthier lifestyle choices.
kid tested smoothie recipesFirst thing is clear the house of junk. If you have a big white loaf of bread sitting on the counter, it’s all you’ll hear about is how they want a slice. Out of sight, out of mind!

I started with smoothies we were already making at home and these are the basic recipes our family enjoys. The nice thing about a smoothie is you really can’t mess it up! Depending on consistency and taste you can add various things to get the perfect blend. I had the kids drink 3-4 glasses of smoothies a day. The great thing is there is usually some left over so if they want to get more through the day, it’s available to them in the fridge.

Also I always put some sort of citrus in the smoothies. Whether it’s lime, lemon or orange juice (with no added sugars), any citrus is great for cleansing the body and is fantastic for the immune system. We found from our juicing post last year that citrus (peel and all!) also cuts through that leafy green taste!

kid smoothie cleanseMy five year old isn’t a huge fan of smoothies. He will drink them but with much protesting and I knew this was going to be a challenge so I prepared by using our dinner chart we posted a few weeks ago. The promise of a prize was enough motivation for him to chug his veggies down.
get kid's eating healthy with a kid cleanseIn between smoothies I had them snack on healthy foods. Along with cutting out sugar, I cut out grains and dairy.  They munched on hard boiled eggs, salmon, chicken & turkey cut in to small portions for protein. I also gave them lots of nuts and avocados so they were getting healthy fats. Also I made sure they were drinking water all throughout the day so they stayed hydrated.

get your kids healthy with a kid cleanse

It really was such a great challenge for our family and the benefits were incredible. We were all calmer, more focused, more patient and kind. My oldest has a hard time with focus as it is The biggest challenge was for me honestly because I spent most my time in the kitchen blending, preparing and cleaning. We didn’t go much of anywhere because we needed to be around the foods that we were sticking to. But surprisingly the kids NEVER complained of hunger! In fact they seemed to be getting full faster then normal because of the nutrient-dense foods they were consuming.

Other really great foods to consider:

Multi-grain crackers with Almond Butter

Celery & Natural Peanut Butter

Dried Cranberries

Luckily, we had a Naturebox delivery sent for an upcoming giveaway this month that saved us! Having healthy snacks around was vital.”

So, dear readers, do you think your kids could do it? More importantly, do you think YOU could do it? Creating a healthier world for our kids is going to be our lifelong battle as parents, sometimes it feels overwhelming but so worth it!



a little bundle

One of our most frequent questions and requests is ideas for new moms and babies! We have a Small Fry Shop full of favorites right here, but we can hardly keep up with the amazing new products and brands that pop up each month. We’ve seen our fair share of monthly delivery services and have shared several over the last year or so, so when we were approached by to review A Little Bundle we were probably a tougher sale than most.

A Little Bundle curated delivery service

With all that being said, hopefully what we are about to say next will carry more weight… This is far and away the best curated baby and mom product delivery service we’ve seen thus far! Every item we pulled out of the box we were thrilled about, with each new company introduced we were irritated we hadn’t found them sooner. A Little Bundle is filled with items that fit the modern mom’s aesthetic, with sweet nods to the past, all while supporting small businesses. Here’s what we got this month:

A Little Bundle curated delivery service

Darling right? Before signing up you share a few things about you and your baby and A Little Bundle makes hand picked selections for you! For those who want to be able to pick and choose they even have a shop where you can by a la carte. Spoiler alert: the shop is amazing.

Fox Tattoos! | A Little Bundle

You can get sneak peeks of the next bundles via their Instagram and Facebook pages, keep up with giveaways and deals via Twitter, and stalk their spot-on Pinterest boards right here.