Weekend Shenanigans

Happy Monday! Cant believe it is the last one for the month. August is birthday month for me! It is crazy, because at the beginning of quarantine, I never dreamed we would still be home for Chris’s birthday in May. And now here we are cruising into mine and we still haven’t been anywhere.

Friday morning, I surprised Zoe with this Cry Babies Doll/House and she loved it. We are talking about hours of play since she has had it. And the little cry baby doll it comes with sleeps on her nightstand next to her bed now. She has the full size Pegasus cry baby that she has been carrying around for the last month, so I figured it was a safe bet.

Saturday morning we had some play time, and then Tomorrowland 2020 started! Every year we look forward to streaming the festival on our projector and listening to the music all day. This year it was a little different, as the festival was virtual. They did an amazing job with all the effects and I was really impressed with how seamless it all was. I still like the real thing though, as the crowd really gives it a different vibe. Hopefully it will be back to normal next year! Zoe is always down for a dance party and cried when it was over.

We also put together a lot of puzzles, painted lots of pictures, played in the sand, changed outfits about ten times, and stayed up way too late.

We ordered Cracker Barrel breakfast Sunday morning, a new tradition we are making a thing. It is always sooooo good. We hung around the house and played Sunday morning. Then ordered chinese for lunch, which Zoe wasn’t a fan of…but I was!

And then we had an ice cream party! Zoe and I made brownies, and I had gotten a lot of fun sprinkles, toppings and hot fudge syrup to go on top. Zoe was such a fan that we did it twice in one day!

After our first ice cream party, Zoe and I took a ride around town and then Facetimed with one of our friends we haven’t seen in way too long!!! We spent a lot of the afternoon in our backyard hanging out. It was in the low 80s and a little overcast, so I didn’t feel like I was going to melt. Zoe had so much fun in the sprinkler and with her water table.

Neither one of us wanted to come inside for dinner, it was just so nice out there. But reality called and the weekend ended. Back to the grind today!!

I spent a lot of time this weekend looking up interactive lesson ideas and sensory play for Zoe. I have been slacking majorly in that department over the last month or two. I mean, it is summer. But we both function better with structure. I want to really invest the time to make it an enjoyable experience though since it looks like we are in this for the long haul right now. I may put together a post of our successful activities.

Have you previewed the Nordstrom Sale yet?? I do get excited for it every year. I never go crazy, but I love picking up a few staple pieces. This year, I am looking at the Barefoot Dreams cardigan, lounge wear and skincare/hair care items. Since I plan to stay at home for who knows how long, I want to be comfy!

I hope you all have a wonderful week!



I felt like a good currently post instead of my usual Friday Favorites.

Reading – I started When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole, and am already hooked. Can’t wait to see where it goes. This is a Netgalley ARC. I believe the book will come out September 1.

When No One Is Watching

Speaking of books, Erin Hahn’s book More Than Maybe came out this week. (It was supposed to come out in May but the release got pushed back.) I read this one several months back from Netgalley and it was real cute! I loved the characters and there were a lot of music references in the book. Highly recommend.

More Than Maybe

Working Out – Still getting in at least 30 minutes a day five days a week. I mostly do Madfit, Heather Roberston or Popsugar Fitness workouts. I really liked this full body one. She uses heavier weights in the beginning and I am here for it! I also try to get in a walk around the neighborhood with Zoe in the morning, and we have been taking family walks in the evenings as well.

Watching – We haven’t really been watching any new shows lately. Just re-watching How I Met Your Mother since we finished Friends. We tend to go back and forth between the two at night before bed.

Loving – I ordered a few things from Biossance a few weeks ago and have been using them regularly. I love that these products are clean, non-toxic and in sustainable packaging. Full disclaimer, not all of my beauty products are clean. But if I find something clean that I like and it works, I tend to stick to that. Here are a few of the products I really like…

Rose Vegan Lip Balm – This stuff goes on like a dream, isn’t too sticky and really does feel nourishing. I have been using pretty much this and my Summer Friday Lip Balms exclusively, and my lips are in the best shape in years. I use the Biossance Balm at night, and the Summer Friday stuff first thing in the morning.

Squalane Cleansing Oil – My skin has been super dry in certain areas lately. This stuff takes off waterproof makeup without stripping the skin of moisture.

Squalane Marine Algae Eye Cream – The skin under my eyes is a straight up mess. I don’t expect any product to be a miracle worker for me. I have dark circles, bags, wrinkles and my skin peels like crazy. I have noticed the last several eye creams I have used have done nothing to improve any of my issues, and most cause the peeling to worsen. I will say that so far this stuff has not caused me to peel at all. That is a win for me! My eye area does feel more moisturized too. Plus the price isn’t stupid ridiculous like other brands.

I also got the Peptide eye gel, but I have only used it a handful of times. As I was trying to see how the eye cream would work first for a few weeks. I haven’t had any bad reactions or peeling yet. I play to use this for day, and the cream for night.

Ranting – I am sick of people being intolerant to others that may have different views than them. The beautiful thing about this country is we are free and get to think for ourselves. Though, it is rare that anyone actually does that anymore. Do your own research. I don’t trust the news and social media. Some influencers/bloggers have come out and said that they have been approached by organizations to push their political agendas and get paid to act enraged that schools are opening back up, push certain types of vaccinations, etc. I find this disgusting. Let me tell you something, it is hard enough to make decisions about your kid without people acting like the damn authority on everything.

So I don’t need some influencer to get paid to tell me that she thinks it is terrible that some parents are sending their kids back to school. Some people don’t have a choice, they have to work. Especially those parents that have essential jobs and can’t afford childcare or to stay home with their kids if the schools don’t open. Some kids have special needs that they get from classes or licensed professionals at the school. Some kids learn better in the school structured environment, and are not doing so well mentally at home without socialization. There is no right way to do this. I know I am “COVID privileged” that I get to work from home right now and keep my kid at home with me if I chose. Not everyone is. And you are an asshole if you want to judge a mom for having to make that difficult decision.

I could go on several more rants right now, but I won’t.

Eating – I made these BBQ mini meatloaves last week, and they were so good! I did a homemade sauce, but obviously using a bottle like the recipe calls for would be even easier. This comes together real fast with minimal ingredients. Zoe approved.

Mini BBQ Meatloaves - The Defined Dish - Recipes

Learning – I would really like to brush up on my graphic design skills. Like I have any. What do you all use to create images, instagram story backgrounds, collages, etc? I have used picmonkey and canva in the past. Curious if there are different, better options out there now.

Excited – This weekend is Tomorrowland!!! Every year we stream the festival on our projector and just relax and listen to music. I am sad that Laura and her crew wont be over. COVID ruins everything. But Chris and I will still make it fun, Zoe loves a dance party. You can purchase your tickets here for the digital stream. Obviously, this is going to be a lot different than other years. They are supposed to have eight stages set up and I am excited for Armin Van Buuren, Klingande, Tiesto, David Guetta, Martin Garrix and everyone else!

Tomorrowland 2020 Shapes Future Of Music Festivals


Funny Pictures Of The Day - 40 Pics
I regret nothing.

Tiny Dancer

Ballerina, you must have seen her dancing in the sand
And now she’s in me, always with me, tiny dancer in my hand

It breaks my heart that Zoe’s first year of dance ended so abruptly. We wont get to wear these adorable costumes to recital this year, so I wanted to take some pictures to commemorate her first year of ballet, tap and jazz. I hope her love for dance continues. She really lights up when we put on her dance outfits and head to class. Week after week she leaves class with a huge smile on her face. Dance parties a regular thing at our house. Forever my tiny dancer.


Weekend Shenanigans

We are cruising right on through July, aren’t we?? It has been a hot one here this last two weeks. 90’s every day. It isn’t my favorite. We hardly spent any time outside this weekend because it is so miserably hot.

Thursday, we decided to have a milkshake party on the deck. (It was really more of a smoothie, but that is neither here nor there.) Find reasons to celebrate everyday. That is the way Zoe is living her life!

Friday we had fun playing in Kinetic sand. We have had this one bag for about a year and a half now, and it has definitely got a lot of play! Zoe likes to dig for animals in it. I bought some (house paint) paint brushes at Dollar General for her to use to dig around in there and they have worked well.

I placed an order for a few items from Publix, and decided to get some sushi for lunch since it was Friday. Best idea ever. Spicy crunch roll for the win!

Saturday, I spent a good two hours cleaning the floors, bathrooms, and doing laundry. I hate doing a huge chunk of my weekend cleaning like that, but it needed to be done. Chris and I also hung a shelf in our half bath and finally got Zoe’s curtains up in her room. Afterwards, I celebrated with margaritas and an enchilada bake. I made the enchilada sauce from scratch, game changer.

Saturday night, I made a buffalo chicken dip in the oven for snacks and we ordered pizzas from a fairly new place in town, Ironstone NY Pizzeria. They are NY style pizzas and they were delicious!!!! The slices were as big as my head.

After Zoe went to bed, I gave up quickly on Space Invaders and Chris and I listened to music. It was a fabulous evening.

Sunday morning, Chris had the genius idea to order Cracker Barrel breakfast. It was amazing. I swear we ate breakfast for like two hours. Zoe kept saying how delicious it was. She really loves their biscuits.

We hung around the house playing Barbies, reading books, playing with play dough and watching movies most of Sunday. Of course, we had a few outfit changes….

In the afternoon, Chris came up with the brilliant idea to order cookies from American Cookie Company (since we were taking a low carb break over the weekend.) An impromptu cookie party ensued, and it was so fun. Zoe talked about it the rest of the day.

Yesterday evening, Zoe and I took a stroll around the neighborhood after the sun went down before bed. After we got our jammies on, Chris suggested we check out the lightening bugs outside. I had never seen so many in one place before!!! It was like we had strung up twinkle lights in our treeline. Zoe was fascinated by them, and even told them all goodnight before we came back in for bed. I have a feeling it will become an evening ritual while they are out there. It’s the little things, you know??

And just like that, the weekend is over and is time to get back to it. This new way of life at home is a weird one some days. There were several times last week I felt really down and out. I miss just being able to go and do. I miss my family. I miss grocery shopping for myself. I miss meeting friends for lunch. And I know Zoe misses her friends and school so much. She has been projecting on her stuffed animals this past week. Saying that her elephant is sad because he doesn’t have any friends to play with anymore. Or that her doll is lonely. It is heartbreaking.

I really hope that things calm down soon so that we can start dipping back into our old lives. Chris and I were watching the episode of How I Met Your Mother last night where they took Robin’s sister the the Empire State building. They were all standing there in the lobby waiting to go in, and Chris said…do you remember when we used to stand in lines like that without a care??? Crazy, right?

First Time In New York | How I Met Your Mother Wiki | Fandom


I was going to do my weekend shenanigans post yesterday, but honestly, there wasn’t much to share. We took a car ride, we played around the house, cooking, dishes, same ol’ as of lately. Today I am linking up with Steph and Jana to share my books for the month.

We Are All the Same in the Dark by Julia Heaberlin

We Are All the Same in the Dark

I am going to be honest and say that this book was slow going in the beginning and took me awhile to get into. It has really good reviews, so I powered through knowing something was coming. I saw a few people call this a thriller. I wouldn’t use those words, at all. It is more of a slow-burn mystery. It started out with Wyatt’s POV, and I cared nothing about it. Then came Odette, and I enjoyed her more…but my attention was still not all there. Finally when we get Angel’s POV, I really started getting into it. There was definitely a twist at the end that I did not see coming!!! And maybe if I cared more about details in the beginning I would have picked up on it more? But who knows. So it has the surprise element going for it.

Bottom Line: If you have the patience for a slow burn mystery, this might be for you. I thought the writing itself was great, and it was definitely an interesting story.

**I received a copy of We Are All the Same in the Dark from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are of my own.**

Burn For Me by Lea Coll

Burn for Me (All I Want, #3)

This is the third book in the series. I didn’t read the first two, but the characters from them are in this book. You don’t need to read it them enjoy this one. And enjoy I did. I couldn’t put it down. A good enemy to lovers story that was hot hot hot with chemistry. I liked both Ashley and Logan. Obviously, all good love stories include miscommunication between the characters, holding back because of past hurt, etc. I plan to read the next in the series and may go back to read the first two even though I know how those turn out.

Bottom Line: Good romance read.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

The Unhoneymooners

I have been on the wait list for almost a year on this one! I just love CL! I really loved both Olive and Ethan, and the chemistry between the two was perfect. The book was fall to black romance scenes, which I wasn’t expecting from Christina Lauren. So if you aren’t a fan of that aspect of a romance book, then you might like this one. I laughed out loud so many times throughout this book, and smiled, and got angry, and felt it all.

Bottom Line: Highly recommend this one! Especially right now, the perfect summer/beach read.

No More Bad Dates by Kate O’Keefe

No More Bad Dates (High Tea, #1)

This was a cute book about bad dates, trying to find the right one, and finding yourself in the process. It was a quick, fun read. I laughed out loud at some of her dating experiences, because I have been there.

Bottom Line: Fun Romcom that passed the time just fine. I thought the cover was really cute.

Rounding Third by Michelle Lynn

Rounding Third (Infield, #1)

This one is full of first love, second chances, heartbreak and tragedy. I am going to be honest, I am not a huge fan of college romance novels. I didn’t realize that was what this was before starting it. But both characters are so broken from the tragedy that they went through together, it didn’t feel too light. I love a second chance romance if it is done right, and this one was! Watching the characters grow and overcome their past was heartwarming.

Bottom Line: This isn’t usually my favorite type of romance, but I actually really enjoyed it. I grabbed it for free on Amazon and felt it was worth the read.

Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey

Love Her or Lose Her (Hot & Hammered, #2)

I am becoming a huge fan of Tessa Bailey. I read the third book first, but that is neither here to there. This series is really fun, and I definitely plan to continue with it! I really liked Rosie and Dominc.I felt like the assessment of their marriage was realistic. That you get comfortable in the every day and let things slide, take things for granted, etc. I read the Love Language book many years ago, and I think I might revisit it after reading this book. They definitely talk about that a lot. I will say, I absolutely hated Dominic calling Rosie “honey girl.” I don’t know why, but it drove me crazy. It was fun getting to see the start of Bethany and Wes which are in the third book, and reading about all the other characters in this series.

Bottom Line: Really cute romcom series, definitely recommend!

Currently Reading

This one just came off hold from the library. I have been on the wait list since November 2019.

Twisted Twenty-Six (Stephanie Plum, #26)