Favorite NON-TOXIC Sunscreens.

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Although I should probably be wearing SPF every day of the year, it’s this particular time of year that I’m even more aware of the sunshine and its effect on my skin (and my boys’ skin!) So when it comes to choosing sunscreen, I take some time to consider the ingredients. Why? Because our skin is the largest organ in our body and anything we apply to our skin is immediately absorbed into our bloodstream. Conventional sunscreen is loaded with ingredients that are less than reputable. Did you know that the FDA is calling for sunscreen reform after discovering the way that traditional sunscreens penetrate the skin and potentially cause endocrine disruption and other harm? There are two surefire safe ingredients when it comes to sunscreen (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), so those are the ones that I hone in on when I purchase!

If you’re confused about which ingredients to look out for, have no fear! I’m here to break down what I’ve learned (but please, know that this is just my research and my discovery - please do your own research, friends! I’m linking to everything in this post so please feel free to check all my sources!)

Okay, there are 2 types of sunscreen on the market- chemical and mineral. Because of the sneaky toxic ingredients that are in chemical sunscreen, I avoid those all together and look for mineral sunscreen.

Active Ingredients

First up, when checking out your sunscreen, make sure to look at the Active Ingredients. On the label, under “active ingredients”, look for:
ACTIVE INGREDIENTS TO LOOK FOR:

  • Titanium Dioxide

  • Zinc oxide

Conventional chemical sunscreens will use chemicals such as the following:
ACTIVE INGREDIENTS TO AVOID:

  • Oxybenzone: detected in nearly every American and found in mother’s milk; this chemical acts like estrogen in the body, alters sperm production in animals and is associated with endometriosis in women.

  • Octinoxate: also detected in mother’s milk, this chemical has hormone-like activity and is associated with reproductive system, thyroid and behavioral alterations in animals.

  • Homosalate: disrupts estrogen, androgen and progesterone.

  • Octocrylene: relatively high rates of skin allergy

Inactive Ingredients

After looking at the “active ingredients” I also look at the “inactive ingredients” to make sure they are free of harmful chemicals, too. This is where things can often get dicey. You don’t have to be an ingredient guru to make an informed decision here (seriously).

INACTIVE INGREDIENTS TO AVOID:

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Grossed out yet? Me too. But there’s no cause for alarm because I have found SO many great sunscreens that perform well without all the nasty toxic ingredients listed above. I’ve tried a LOT more than what is listed here, but these are the few that made it in the top running.

My Sunscreen Picks

Runner Ups

  • Bare Republic
    You have to check the individual types of sunscreen to make sure the ingredients are as clean as you would like. I like to use the Think Dirty app and the EWG as a resource for this. They also have some wild colors and metallic options which I think would be fun to try, but they aren’t so clean, ingredient-wise.

  • Coola
    Same as the Bare Republic - some of the products are cleaner than others.

  • REN Clean Screen SPF Mineral SPF 30
    Contains fragrance but otherwise has good ingredients.

That’s all I’ve got for you friends! I hope this guide is helpful as you navigate the sunscreen game! Keep in mind that this is simply my own research - PLEASE do your own research and trust your gut instinct when it comes to decisions for yourself and your family! Even though we are more than halfway through summer (say it ain’t so!), we will all be enjoying warm weather (and sun exposure) until basically November down here where I live in Georgia. So our sunscreen isn’t going to get retired for a good long while! Happy summer-ing to you! xx

Amazon Prime Day Deals the I am Drooling Over.

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*** Sold out items are marked BOLD and updated/new items will be listed with “***” !

It’s time for Amazon’s biggest sale of the year - Amazon Prime Day! Since we use Amazon Prime practically weekly around here, I wanted to make sure to share some of these deals that I am always keeping an eye on when it comes to this sale. These deals are only good for today and tomorrow (July 15-16), and I’m so excited to share them because some of these deals are better than Black Friday! And bonus, you can shop from home in your pjs. Which is basically the only way I do it these days.

If you don’t have an Amazon Prime Membership, you can try the 30-day free trial and still take advantage of these deals. They are flash deals with a limited stock, so the key it to take advantage of them (as in, “add to cart” and check out quickly!) today and tomorrow.

The number 1 reason why I love Amazon Prime? Free 2-Day shipping! It’s a mama’s dream come true, getting everything delivered to my door. It also keeps me out of trouble from meandering around Target all too often and coming home with items I don’t really need.

In this post, I’m narrowing down the best deals (and my favorites!) in the following categories: tech, home, baby, family & kids. FYI, if you make a purchase through the links on this page I will receive a small commission, so thanks for shopping “with me”! And keep in mind that some Prime Day deals are time sensitive, so prices are subject to change. Happy shopping, friends!


TECH:
Echo Dot - Only $22 today! We are obsessed with our Echo Dots (we have them all around the house), and this is the best price I’ve ever seen on them! Also, this makes an awesome gift.
Fire TV Stick with Alexa Remote - Normally $39.99, today this is $14.99 and SUCH an awesome addition to controlling and syncing all your TV wants and needs.
New Kindle Fire 7 - $29.99 today (normally $50), this is a road trip must-have for us and such a great deal today! I’m kicking myself for how much we paid for ours.
Seagate 4TB Backup Hard Drive - Running out of storage on my computer is one of THEE most frustrating things. I have several of this Seagate drives and I LOVE them! This is a crazy good deal under $100 for a TON of storage!
Bose Wireless Headphones - Normally $229, these are $159 today and sooo pretty! If you’ve been in the market for these, buy them!
Beats Solo Over-Ear Wireless Headphones - Another awesome brand on sale! Normally $259, on sale for $139 today! Would love these for the gym!

HOME:
Roomba iRobot - I am freaking out over the deals on these three models of the iRobot, especially this one for less than $300! This has been the deal I’ve been waiting for! SO many of my family members have the iRobot and pinky promise that it has changed their life. They let turn it on at night before they go to sleep and wake up in the morning to clean floors. My dream come true.
Dyson V7 Animal Pro Cordless Vaccum - If you’re in the market for an upright vacuum, this is a killer deal on a tried-and-true brand and model. I want this one, too!
FLASH DEAL ENDED. Instant Pot Pressure Cooker - Literally the best thing I added to my kitchen in 2019. Have no dinner plan at 5pm? No problem for the Instant Pot! You can throw anything in there any 45 minutes later be eating a delicious home cooked meal.
FLASH DEAL ENDED. Nespresso VertuoPlus - I am in love with my Nespresso. This model is a bit different than mine, but it is only $99! Unheard of!
*** Mellanni Bed Sheets - Only $24.97! We have several sets of these sheets and LOVE them! They are crazy soft and super on sale today only!
*** KitchenAid Mixer Pasta Roller Attachment - Over 50% off! This is SUCH a steal!
*** KitchenAid Sifter and Scale Attachment - Over 70% off!
*** NuLoom Moroccan Area Rug - I’ve literally never seen such a deal ($58.66!) on this kind of rug. I think I’m gonna grab this one for our reading nook!

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BABY:
FLASH DEAL ENDED. Skip Hop Baby Jumper - Normally $130, today this is a steal for $65.99! I love the Skip Hop brand and have been so impressed with all their products. Listing a few others in the “Kids” section as well!
Baby K’Tan Wrap Carrier - Normally $49.95, on sale today for $34.99! I have this wrap and I love it! So great for the itty-bitty baby stage where you need to have your arms but they want you to hold them all day long.
Chicco Keyfit30 Carseat - Save 20% on this carseat today! We used this one with Daxton and LOVED it and bought another for our second car. Durable, so safe and compatible for our stroller. Such a winner in my book.
VTech Sit to Stand Walker - This has been probably the most-used toy for my boys when they are in the 1-2 year age range. Such a deal today!
***Freshly Picked Newborn Moccs - $29! This is the cheapest you will ever see these cutie moccs! I loved having these for my babies and they make the sweetest baby gift for others.
*** Ergobaby 360 Carrier - You better believe I grabbed this deal so fast! This is by far the BEST baby carrier you will ever spend money on. I love a lot of carriers, but this one reigns supreme! I grabbed the gray color so Stevie and I could share it with our new babe!
*** Burts Bees Fitted Crib Sheet - We LOVE these and have at least 5! This is the only crib sheet that I found didn’t pill and shrink when I washed it, which, spoiler alert, you do a LOT when you have babies ;)

FAM & KIDS:
Magnetic Building Blocks - My boys love playing with these and I love how quiet they are when they are playing with them! They are typically expensive and never marked down, so this is a great one to snag for a Christmas gift ;)
FLASH DEAL ENDED. Radio Flyer Lean N Glide Scooter - Everett has been asking for one of these for his birthday and voila! The perfect deal!
FLASH DEAL ENDED. Green Toys Airplane - One of our favorite toy brands! This is a fun one to add to our collection of other Green Toys vehicles :)
SOLD OUT ***Camelbak Eddy Kids 2 Pack - We go through these bottles like water. Pun intended.

P.S. - If you’re interested in doing some other shopping, I have an Amazon Shop page for other items that I love and use with my Amazon Prime account.

Baby #3 is a...

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BOY!!!

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We can’t seem to get enough boys around here! You can just refer to us as the wolf pack now, because I think three boys qualifies us. I am overwhelmed with gratitude. Verrrrrry surprised that this little person is another boy (because I always think I’m having a girl and I’m apparently always wrong!) but I am so thrilled. These boys are my entire life and I have become a better person because I get to be their mom.

I didn’t grow up in a household with boys, so I am constantly leaning into the Lord’s wisdom for how to handle situations that I am SO not equipped to handle in my own right. These boys have challenged me, caused me to have to get sharper and lean into my intuition and grow in my parenting approach (believe me, reading a lot of parenting boymom books these days…) I am giggling at how funny my life looks every day with these loud, funny, imaginative, wonderful little boys. I truly believe God knows exactly who our family is supposed to be and I am just so honored that I get to raise another little boy in sweet family. I truly feel like it’s a big responsibility, since we are living in an amazing age where women are more empowered with opportunities than ever before. It’s going to take mighty, humble, confident men to thrive right along side all these empowered women and I truly feel the call to do my very best with my boys. They are going to be (and already are!) such incredible men! I’m overwhelmed with love.

Soooo since I won’t be having tea parties with little girls, alert to all my girlfriends - I’m gonna need my fill of tea time, manicures and skincare shopping. Please do those things with me.

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We are SO excited to meet you, little man!!! Your brothers are already planning presents for you, discussing where you will sleep and who will get to wrestle with you first (Everett has dibs, but Daxton is pretty feisty so we’ll see!)

We love you so much! Can’t wait to meet you in November!!!

P.S. - Shoes are matching New Balance for infant & toddler (on sale!)

A Weekend in Marco Island!

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Last weekend, Stevie and I took a little trip down to Marco Island, Florida! We wanted to celebrate our 12-year wedding anniversary (I can’t believe it’s been that long!) and also get a little babymoon in before this little one arrives in a few months. 5 months is always a sweet time to travel because it’s not too uncomfortable yet, so we planned a fast 2-night getaway so we could connect, read, eat and talk without our other two cuties pulling on our time.

IT WAS THE BEST.

We had never been to Marco Island. We had heard about it and had some flight points, so we picked the Hilton Marco Island Beach Resort and just went for it. The resort is gorgeously situated on the water, has a seriously delicious buffet breakfast and a killer amazing spa. We weren’t expecting the food on the island to be so legendary, but it is basically all Italian and all INCREDIBLE. I’m not usually one for pasta and pizza on the beach because, I don’t know, I don’t want to feel carb-loaded when I’m in a bathing suit, but being pregnant has it’s perks. I’m always bloated! So we ate like we were in Italy! And it was magnificent. Really and truly.

EATS.
If you’re visiting, we ate a fancy, celebratory meal at Sale e Pepe (incredible fresh pasta and fish!) which was a quick walk from our hotel and has the most beautiful views of the ocean. The pizza and salad at DaVinci almost made us cry and of course we had to indulge in gelato at Dolce Mare where they also home make chocolate truffles. Get the caramel sea salt. More incredible pizza at Joeys and we also loved brunch in Naples at The Cafe on 5th where they had the best juices and crepes ahhhh. I’m drooling just typing all this.

We took lots of pictures, and these are all from my iPhone!

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^ The view from our hotel! So lush and tropical.

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^My 5 month baby bumps vs. Stevie’s (below)

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A lot of the buildings lining the beach were actually condos and not hotels. This is a place for snow birds and we were actually visiting in the off-season! It was truly tropical weather. Like HOT and humid. Most of the snow birds hang out down there Jan.-May.

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Old Navy Suit (sold out in yellow, still in stock in black top and bottom)

^One morning we decided to split up and do whatever we wanted! I crave alone time SO much and Stevie always wants to play golf, so that’s what we did! I ate breakfast alone (SUCH a luxury), laid on the beach and read, and then went to the spa for a pedicure. It was seriously the most indulgent morning I’ve had in years.

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^My tan is so fake you guys. I normally don’t lay out in the sun but since I was only out for about an hour on this particular morning I went for it and ended up spending most of that time in the ocean because it was just SO hot. But I really love getting an organic spray tan at RAW Bronzing Studio and that’s how I look and feel tan without actually baking for hours in the sun ;)

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^Just having a mermaid moment

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JCrew suit (past season, similar here) Target Hat, Target Sunglasses

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Target Dress, Target Sandals

^It was so dark by the time we went to our dinner at Sale E Pepe, but it really is worth visiting! It’s styled like an Italian art museum, with frescos painted on the walls and arched walkways and fountains. It’s really special.

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^That dinner view. I meannnnn.

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^It was so tropical! I couldn’t get over the bird songs and the lush flowers and exotic plants.

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^Downtown Naples! We didn’t get to spend a lot of time here, but we want to plan another trip to explore more because it was SO stunning. I mean, look at this pink building! Is this real life?!

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^Pistachio and Hazelnut gelato. Glory be.

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ASOS dress (sold out, similar here), Target Sandals

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This trip was truly a dream. We ate SO well, we read on the beach, we even went to the spa together and got massages one morning! Stevie hadn’t had a massage in 10 years, so you could say he was due for a de-stressing morning. He was so funny when he came out of the massage room - we met up in the little spa garden and drank cucumber water and he was like, “I CAN’T BELIEVE HOW GOOD THAT WAS.

I don’t feel bad about getting some pampering before entering into another season of sleepless nights and busy baby days. Feeling very grateful for the time we got together, to dream and talk and laugh and wonder about what the future of our family will be like with 3 kids! I am so so grateful to my parents for taking over and watching the big boys while we got away. This was an extra special trip, just getting Stevie all to myself for a few days of fun and relaxation. Hurray for beaches and babies!

10 Things Happening in June + Life Update!

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Happy June! I can’t believe I am almost halfway through this pregnancy (19 weeks pregnant with baby #3!) - where on earth has the time gone?! I really get the feeling like this baby is going to be here like SO SOON. So we are trying to do lots of things this summer, both for fun (!) and for baby prep!

I decided to write this post old-school style, by dumping my iphone photos in here and chatting about what’s been going on. Lately the curated, planned-out posts just haven’t been making the priority list (kids home for the summer, man it’s kicking my booty!), and I’ve put a hold on all sponsored collaborations until I have capacity to really do them well. So here’s a post like those of the olden days!


I love this month of the year! Even in the thick humidity and mosquito-laden evenings, it’s the kick off to summer! Along with all the wonderful summer things like popsicles on the back porch and afternoons swimming, it’s also our wedding anniversary month! And this month also marks the season in this pregnancy where I am starting to feel great again - oh gosh, I am so grateful. I don’t know how I would function if I were still sick… my poor kids would be stir crazy while I laid on the couch. These guys were such troopers the past few months and I am just so glad that we can play a lot together over the coming months. I’ve been experiencing an overwhelming sense of gratitude since I’ve been coming out of the first trimester nausea that seemed to linger longer than my other pregnancies. I am just so grateful to be able to eat again! And laugh again! And exercise again! Life is beautiful, even when it’s so not perfect.

A few things that have been happening over here and things I’m looking forward to!

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1. Everett just finished his first golf camp and he LOVED it. Makes me think about signing him up for another session this summer if we can squeeze it in! We are also doing lots of swim lessons this month so there has been lots of sunscreen and pool time happening lately. My porch is littered with wet towels and sandals. And bubble paraphernalia because that’s been happening too.

2. I’ve been drinking this little combination and it has been the most refreshing treat! Fill a glass up with crushed ice and then do half green tea and half lemonade - it is SO GOOD. I got the idea from the Starbucks shaken iced green tea lemonade. I was going there way too much so I decided to make my own. Does the trick!

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3. There’s Stevie! I haven’t gotten enough pics with him this summer. One of our fave family outings during the week is jumping on the golf cart and heading to the golf course so the boys can hit a few balls. I usually do squats and lunges while they putt and chip - although once I’m out of this baby phase of life, I’d love to take golf lessons, too! This has been a really fun thing for all of us to enjoy together this summer, although it usually means bedtime happens later too…

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4. Ah, those haircuts! They look so big! Okay so I have to tell you a little bit about the lake! My in-laws have a new spot in Alabama on a beautiful lake, so we have been making our way out there as many weekends as possible this summer! It’s really special to get time away from home as a family, and oftentimes, as an extended family! Even though we live in the same town as so much of our family (especially Stevie’s side), we barely see each other because everyone is busy with kids and jobs and just life! So it’s been fun to catch up with each other out there. The boys are getting really comfortable on the water, and they love going out on the boat, fishing, and kayaking! I have decided to take a little hiatus from boating for the rest of this pregnancy because it makes me nauseous. But reading on the dock really does what I need for growing my brain and giving me that much-needed alone time. Have I mentioned how much I crave alone time?? Ha I never get it.

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5. I read this whole series by Kristy Woodsen Harvey and loved it! Perfect summertime reads if you need something light and easy for a beach vaycay. I’m about to start this biography but I am in desperate need for more book recs! If you have some good ones please leave them in the comment section! Thanks in advanced! Also, this is my fave sunscreen this summer and this is the incredible BECASA cotton pullover my friend Emily sent to me - the perfect cozy cover up!

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6. They still thinking matching is cool. How long do you think I get to live this up?! Their shirts and shorts here.

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7. Have you ever heard about Farmgirl Flowers?! They are literally the most gorgeous, fresh arrangements I’ve even seen in my life. They’re pricey but I feel like they make the most incredible gift. I’ve dropped an insane amount of hints about them and Stevie sent them as a complete surprise at the beginning of this month! The note said, “I love you more than all the hairs on your head”, which literally cracked me up and made me feel SO loved. This is a really lame picture of them but this blog post is about keeping things real, not creating a styled shoot of my flowers. Although if I had the time, I totally would have done it.

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8. Speaking of our anniversary! Stevie and I are heading to the beach this weekend for a quick getaway to celebrate our 12-year wedding anniversary slash babymoon situation. Every year of marriage marks its own milestones but this past year in particular has been such a growth season for us. Because of his travel schedule for work and the constant motion of life at home, we don’t always get a chance to connect in the day-to-day (probably most parents with little kids feel this way!), so I am extra excited to get away with just him for a few days. Like, we are going to talk and not get interrupted. Also, I’m excited to lay on the beach and not have to feed anyone snacks or sunscreen any wiggly little people. Like what is that life?!

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9. Pure Americana suburb life is happening over here - we hang out in the culdusac with our neighbors a lot and LOVE it. If its 6pm and not pouring rain, you can find us trashing the street with bikes, scooters, frisbees, sippy cups and lots of kids having lots of fun. We love our neighbors so much!

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10. Last but not least, we have been busy with house projects! We are in the process of creating a shared bedroom for Everett & Daxton and turning the nook outside of the bedroom into a bonus play space. The bedrooms in our house are small and I really want them to have more space to be boys and play, so I’m hoping this will be a good solution for them! We are sooo close on getting these spaces finished so fingers crossed that it comes together soon. After we finish their bedroom + play space we will work on creating a new office/guest space in Everett’s old bedroom and then working on updating our nursery for the new babe! And yes, the nesting phase of this pregnancy is absolutely motivating me - the hormones are crazy!

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What are your plans for summer? I really loved this blog post about not creating a bucket list for summer (I seriously breathed a sigh of relief while reading it!), and we have been really enjoying the self-discovery of letting June just sort of happen to us. Yes, I still keep somewhat of a routine and structure to our day, but I haven’t felt the NEED to hit all these items on a summer bucket list like I have in previous summers. It’s been really refreshing and exactly what I need in this season. Bring on the popsicles and impromptu golf cart rides and Monday night pizza! Happy June to you all! xx