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Five on Friday

Happy Friday!

If you’re subscribed to my newsletter, you already know that back to school is kicking my butt and I am at mental load capacity right now between work, school, blogging, after-school activities and more. I know we’ll eventually get into a good routine and we will iron out all the kinks, but dang I feel like I’m dropping balls in every aspect of my life right now. I honestly do not know how parents with more than 2 kids balance it all.

Anyway, this 3 day weekend could not come at a better time and we couldn’t have made better plans to unwind, unplug from screens and spend lots of distraction-free quality time together as a family…we’re going camping!!! While this is one more thing for me to plan, organize and pack for, I am confident it is exactly what our family needs right now — and once we arrive to our site it will all be worth it!


1. Two Truths & A Lie

I recently shared a strategy I discovered on Instagram on how to get your kids to share more about their day — play the game “two truths and a lie.” Caroline is usually pretty chatty when she gets off the bus and will download the highlights with me. However, Thomas is absolutely impossible to get information out of. His response is almost always “I don’t remember anything about my day” and when I ask follow up questions he gets annoyed. Soooo, we’ve been playing this game at dinner every night this week and IT WORKS!!!

2. Magic Eraser Magic

A few weeks ago I tackled many areas of our home with a Magic Eraser — walls, trim, cabinets, etc. It felt so good to finally check this task off the list. I had polled y’all on Instagram on your favorite things to clean with a Magic Eraser and wanted to round up the most popular responses I received. Note: all of these areas should be white and scrubbed carefully. Also, I had some questions about our wall paint. When we moved in we had the interior painted top to bottom with an eggshell finish which is wipeable! You will want to make sure whatever your cleaning is safe to use an eraser on first!

Things to Clean with a Magic Eraser
  1. Home Interior: Cleaning the walls within your home (especially white ones) was hands down the most popular recommendation for removing food splatter, crayons, sharpie, marker and all the mystery marks that kids leave behind. Following the walls is doors, trim, baseboards & window ledges.
  2. Shoes: You can bring your white sneakers back to life with the magic eraser! You can also clean kid shoes — especially Natives!
  3. Kitchen: So many great places to scrub in your kitchen! The most popular recommendations? Kitchen cabinets (especially ones with food splatter or scuffs), glass stove tops, microwaves & range hoods!
  4. Bathroom: This includes the bathtub, shower, sinks, shower floor, shower glass, grout and soap scum!
  5. Misc: A few other recommended items that blew my mind to clean included the outdoor play slide, Mac keyboard and leather handbags.


3. Wedding

Last weekend Matt and I attended one of his very best friend’s wedding! It was an absolute blast. I honestly cannot remember the last time we got to dress up fancy and do something fun. And I got to wear this gorgeous dress that Matt surprised me with just before COVID hit! (His office is right across the street from Monkees and when a dress in the window really catches his eye from his desk he will pop over and buy it. He is so much more thoughtful than me.) Anyway, while trying to re-learn how to curl my hair I watched a million tutorials before finding THIS ONE! I have been using my flat iron to curl my hair for the past few years and really liked going back to my curling iron for this method



4. Fall Weather

A really awesome surprise arrived yesterday — fall weather. I’m sure it’s temporary this early in September but I am elated for a high of 80 degrees and will absolutely be moving my desk outside today. If you’re also excited for the fall season, I wanted to share my two favorite door mats from last season! These are actually still on both porches from last fall…



5. Fairy Tales Rosemary Repel Conditioning Spray

PSA for mamas of little girls (especially ones with long hair in school) — you’re gonna want to stock up on this lice prevention conditioning spray by Fairy Tales! We’ve been using it for years and it smells amazing and works well as a detangler. This leave-in conditioner contains a blend of rosemary, citronella, tea tree oils to help repel lice. We haven’t had any lice encounters yet but I fear the day we receive an outbreak email from school.


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Tuesday 14th of September 2021

LOVE that Matt surprises you with dresses, he's a keeper :) x

Toni :0)

Friday 3rd of September 2021

I think that is so precious that Matt surprised you with that dress. My husband has no idea my size so I’m truly impressed Matt did that for you. So precious.

As a mom to two young adults who juggled it all when they were small like you, I can tell you it gets easier. One day at a time and if the house doesn’t get clean for a week, it’ll get clean next week. I just got a Eufy robot floor vacuum off Amazon (we named her Eva from Wall-E since she’s white with a blue light) and it just changed my life. Highly recommend LOL. Pick what’s most important and just enjoy your littles. It all goes by so quickly and it makes me teary a bit that those years are now gone. Hang in there 🙏

Have a wonderful weekend camping. 💜


Friday 3rd of September 2021

Okay that is so so sweet about Matt and the dress!! Hope y'all have a great time camping!

xoxo A