Big Mouth Summer!

Summer is somehow halfway through and I always find we sort of lose a little steam! Big Mouth sent this package just in time to add some excitement to our pool and lake days!

Pool InflatablesWhat I love about these inflatables is that it’s like an instant friend and fun maker. My boys might not know the kids at the pool very well (or at all) but having a fun toy to share gives instant confidence it seems! Here’s some of my favorites and conveniently they’re all on Amazon for a quick shipping option!

Big Mouth Inflatables

Also don’t forget a pump!! We use the cigarette lighter kind (it has a handle, too!) which makes it easy to blow everything up on the go (it also has a deflator so you can repack your car quickly!) I love that this one has a plug option, too (no handle but I guess we can’t win ’em all!) //

Hayes is actual footage of me during Summer. HA!

Big Mouth Inflatables

Double hearts for you and your significant other! They also have cherries if you just want to stay close to your buddy without holding onto their tube all day. ūüėČ // Smarties Pool Noodle is a steal at $15!¬†Big Mouth Inflatables

They have a big selection of floaties for babies and toddlers, the OTTER!, or with shades and or without really just the cutest ever. RAINBOW!

If you’re ready to up your beach towel game, they have a big selection here, too! It seems like all my friends have the same Costco towels so having the bomb pops makes tracking our towel situation down so much easier! // The T-Rex floatie makes me roll, with the tiny arms! This one is Raleigh’s and he is VERY into it. Drags it everywhere.

Giant Cheeseburger is actually giant!

Big Mouth Inflatables

They also have new yard sprinklers which are pretty magical I must say. SO many here, but this rainbow one is our fave.

Yard Sprinkler

Happy shopping! And thanks to Big Mouth for upping our Summer swag.

summer morning routine printable!

Viewing on a MOBILE device? Click HERE to get the direct download! And HERE for the blank version!

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. ūüėČ 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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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!

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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on-the-go faves

Even though I am a planner at heart, Summer is full of spontaneous fun for us. Lots of last minute plans and blocks of time opening up when naps go ary, I just like to be well prepared for any fun event if we’re out and about or need to split quickly, so I try to keep the car well stocked. But let it be said I don’t have a huge trunk, so as much as I’d love to get the wagon on this list, these are things I can fit and carry myself!

Ready? On-the-go faves!

summer on the go

  1. Kindhood Towel. I don’t bring towels anymore. I make my kids put on their hooded towels and they are in charge of them from start to finish! It’s SO much easier and the sheer real estate they free up in my bag is life altering. Terry underneath and softest Pima cotton on top so they’re absorbent, warm, and luxe. Worth every penny for sure.
  2. Waterproof, portable blue tooth speaker! Toss it in your bag and have that playlist ready. I love that it clips!
  3. Backpack beach chairs might not be the coolest thing ever to wear but I NEED MY HANDS. Then once you set it up it has pockets for your phone and valuables and I love this red orange color. You can get them with canopies for shade (nursing moms, hit that one hard!)
  4. Stackable snack containers. Keep them all in one place, easy to grab and go, and plenty of options for a variety of kids!
  5. I fell hard for my bubba tumbler and love this even bigger size! Keep your whole family hydrated and your drink icy. Also WAY less than Yeti or Hydroflask.
  6. Mini Detangling Brushes: My kids hair is all long and frankly, a nightmare at times but especially after the pool. I keep a mini wet brush in my car, my bag, in each bathroom. I LOVE these! 6 Pack is worth it, I promise!
  7. Shiny Happy is all natural and works amazingly well. I love how my kids hair feels after it dries which if you’ve tried detangling sprays you KNOW not all are created equal.
  8. Nothing makes me feel more like shutting down Summer fun like a dead phone. No more of that! External Charger, top rated and affordable!
  9. If I pass on one legacy let it be the power of Bull Frog. I grew up in Arizona desert sun using this and swear by it still. It works so well but you’ll still get a wicked tan through it. This is what we bring to Lake Powell, an all day pool day. Its the best.
  10. Face Stick is another must. So much easier on wriggling kids.
  11. Getting another batch of these clear bags for the pool bag, wet suits, sunscreen, a place to put cash and coin for that gosh darn snack shack. Pack lunches or snacks in them, clear for life.
  12. Bags are intensely personal but I found 4 that I think would be amazing for a Summer on-the-go bag. First is this striped cooler. If you’re packing food and drinks to the beach it would be amazing for that, but also fits a ton of other things, too!
  13. This huge Zara tote is $18! Great for dry things and an a super affordable option.
  14. This CleverMade collapsible bag seems ideal because it’s wipeable, folds down flat when you’re not using it, holds its form, has long handles.
  15. This speckled Baggu version is gorgeous and the zipper at the top is the best feature I’d say. Stands on its own and is large enough for ALL.THE.THINGS.

And don’t forget the blanket! I love this one from Andean Beginnings – its enormous and so pretty.

 

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waterproof shoes

Q: Where can I find waterproof shoes that aren’t ugly?

A: See below!

(Assumptive of me, because maybe you think these are ugly too, but here’s my favorites!)

Waterproof Kids Shoes

You know how I feel about Natives, now they make SANDALS! // Old Navy makes these FAUX VELCRO BIRKS for toddlers up to size 11 and I get stopped every time Raleigh wears them. So great for Summer and SO easy to put on which you can’t say for every sandal. //¬†NATIVES always and forever. The Jefferson style works great for my big kids, I like the Miller for a wider fit for Raleigh // ADILETTE by Adidas for kids // I can actually confirm that even though you wouldn’t assume, SALTWATERS do great in the water. I wouldn’t wade in the pool because they still have metal buckles but totally find for a puddle or splash pad or something in a pinch. They literally last for decades as you will see if you buy any at a thrift store. //¬†CHACOS! For hiking, lake days, heavier duty outdoor activities! //¬†¬†KIDDIE TEVAS! Platform! Metallic!

And even more from around the web!

 

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KID’S SWIM 2018

By popular demand, KIDS SUITS! Ladies first.

Also, there are a few brands that don’t affiliate with the system I use to make these super great shoppable collages so if you’re looking for even more amazing options try:

Zara // Tiny Cottons // Raising Wild // bobochoses // Ralph Lauren Kids // Janie and Jack // Kortni Jeane // Minnow 

AND BOYS!

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kindhood towel ponchos

Snapped a few pics of my boys in their Kindhood towel ponchos while we were beaching it this weekend in California and had to share. My friend Carly started this company and I am thrilled to team up on a really great giveaway on Instagram, too! (@smallfryblog) You guys are gonna flip over these, read up below!Kindhood I made the switch to towel ponchos earlier this Summer (SO much easier than schlepping/dragging everyone’s towels) but there are only a few designs anywhere and they’re not that great. Then came KINDHOOD!Kindhood I currently have these hanging in the bathroom as they have also replaced my boys’ bath towels! KindhoodKindhood is terry lined and made with bamboo cotton which is THE softest material you can find. So silky and buttery and cool to the touch.KindhoodThese fabrics have a 97% UV ray filter so once they’ve had enough sun, but maybe not enough play, the fun doesn’t have to stop! KindhoodIt’s also moisture-wicking and the bamboo is antibacterial, too! ¬†I have been loving these for bath time, and don’t have to worry to much if I forget to bring them in from the car after the pool. See all their darling prints here, they also have infant towels!KindhoodAnyway, I hope you all love them like I do and grab some for your water babies for bath time or get a headstart on Fall break vacation plans! Head to Instagram to win one for you and a buddy!!

HAYES // CAL  // RALEIGH

and then there was one!

I’ve got a big update for you all today,¬†but since no one wants to read an essay with no pictures here’s a few from our Lake Day this weekend! Kortni Jeane was so sweet to send my fam these mix and match swimmers! I am not a huge blatant matcher, but I love that all her pieces are so easy to coordinate with each member of the family. Kortni JeaneI love the polka dot line SO so much and grabbed the super flattering racerback crop top for myself and then the shorts for Hayes. I’d put him in the Euro fit forevermore but he isn’t down anymore so we went with the trunk which still has a little shortness to it which I love!¬†The red stripe bottoms tie in with that perfect black drawstring and they’re such a bold bright red! I love that they’re a thicker stripe, too! Trunks for Cal¬†and the Euro Short for Raleigh.Kortni JeaneI love that the tank is easy to wear out and about too, just threw on this high-waisted wrap skirt and these red sunnies!¬†They’re coming from China so 2-3 weeks shipping, if anyone has found them in the states holler at me! And of course the¬†Petunia Pickle Bottom Fair Trade Woven Bag which I am in love with. Adidas Slides.Kortni Jeane¬†And now for the update! This is the first time at Small Fry we’ve gone out and shot our own post, Russ and I with our very own nice camera. I would never dare or care to do it with such a talented partner in Nicole, but now that I am the solo Fry it’s been an exciting endeavor to do and learn with Russ. He has been so supportive every step of the last couple months as we transition to just me running the show. To put it simply I would’ve run for the hills¬†if it weren’t for him cheering me on. Although I feel super vulnerable every day, and some days are more rough than others, it’s been a big blessing in our life. And I know how fortunate we all are (Jenna, Nicole and myself) to have been able to dissolve a business partnership with friendship still in tact. I will always be grateful for that and have the best memories. When we started this thing Cal wasn’t even walking yet, it’s crazy to think about!Kortni JeaneAnd a few more pics and updates for good measure!¬†Cal cracks me up in this. I never know what I am gonna get when I go through photos after taking a pic if him. He never ceases to surprise me! He has come such a long way this Summer, growing up, learning new things, caring so much for his baby brother. Heading to Kindy and turning 6 in a couple weeks. Kortni JeaneMy Hayes. Going into second grade, being so grown up.¬†Makes me quiz him in multiplication all day. Listening to audio books and telling me big words he likes.¬†Kortni Jeane Raleigh Rex. Putting his head on my shoulder, peeking around my hair to catch my eye when I fill up his bottle. Egging me to chase him while we crawls up the stairs. Getting more sass and teasing nature to him.¬†Kortni JeaneMy man. He works his body to the ground everyday building our house (more on that soon!) and then comes home and backs me up every step of the way. Pulls through every single time. Also, he has gotten a few trunks (they have a shorter version as well!) gifted to him this season and he says these are his favorite fit, Russ Frame doesn’t give his stamp very often so that is saying a lot. ūüėČKortni JeaneAnd I did the high-waisted bottom. Why do guys hate this fit but all girls love it? I love that it hides my stretch marks and gives me that hourglass figure.Kortni Jeane¬†¬†There are so many exciting things to come for Small Fry and my family, I am really excited to share them all with you and am so grateful you’ve been along for the ride. Hopefully you haven’t felt the bumps along the way, but I always want to be open and transparent so thanks for hearing me out today!

Also if there’s anything you want to see from Small Fry or me, I am all ears! For now I am adding a big home element to things in this space with my favorite home tours and updates on my own home building process. Some of you might not know this, but Russ is currently building our house with his very own two hands so we’ll have lots to say on this as we get our stuff together filming wise. Yay I get to figure out iMovie, too! Aaaand maybe more fashion? For now I have been sharing my daily outfits on @smallfryblog Insta Stories and anytime I wear something current or linkable I put it in smallfryblog.com/outfits for you to refer back to. Anyway, I am here¬†and listening¬†so don’t hestitate to hit me with questions or suggestions.

xoxo

Emily

yogurt bar breakfast

By Emily.

You all know we’ve been focusing on easy Summertime ideas to make the mornings (or afternoons, depending on when your down time is) special and not so “I’m so bored!” Raleigh is napping three times a day still (oof!) so we have lots of downtime at home and I am basically stringing these ideas together for my own sanity.Yogurt BarSo today’s idea is just a few extra steps on your regular breakfast routine, but the boys loved it!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

Their favorite yogurt, bowls of toppings, a special breakfast munching area.

TOPPING IDEAS: granola, chopped fruit, honey, chia, seeds or nuts, dried fruit, and to make it extra special – candy! Yep that’s right you’re gonna roll with it just this once.Screen Shot 2017-06-20 at 7.20.03 PM We don’t even feel bad because we used Black Forest’s Organic Gummy Bears and Sour Heads (check out their huge assortment of organic dummies here! SO awesome.¬†¬†Yogurt Bar TeePee Joy sent us this classic red teepee with tiny stars which we love and let the boys eat in (which we don’t normally do so that is a party in itself, ha!) You can actually design your own custom teepee here as well!Yogurt Bar

Happy Summer guys, you’re doing awesome!