Thursday, August 14, 2014

Our Lost Pines Family Vacation

We had so much fun during our mini getaway that was literally 45 mins from our doorstep to the beautiful grounds of Hyatt Lost Pines. So many fun memories were made and we can't wait to return next summer. This will definitely be a family tradition. 

 Summer Days are meant for ice cream!
 and more ice-cream! 
Enjoying some ice cream at Lock Drug. One of the oldest Soda Fountains in the state of Texas. 

 and a s'more. 
I promise you my kid never gets this many treats especially in one day! 
Plus, its vacation and who can say no to a s'mores

 Then there is the wonderful sand beach where we spent a majority of our days.

floating on the lazy river

and the water slide. 
This was Elle's new found love. We probably rode this slide 50xs. 

Enjoying the peaceful view of the Colorado River

Bye Lost Pines. 
Until next summer thank you for the wonderful family time!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Book Review of The Supreme Macaroni Company by Adriana Trigiani

Thanks to Italy book tours I am excited to highlight The Supreme Macaroni Company by New York Times bestseller Adriana Trigiani. 

With the main character Valentine falling in love and getting married we see first hand the struggles she faces balancing the demands of caring for her family and meeting the demands of owning a successful family shoe business. This feeling amongst women is not uncommon in today's society.   I felt like a lot of women are able to relate to Valentine's struggles in this read.

I did like the whit and humor that comes across in the characters, but at times it was hard for me to get into the book. It always felt like there could have been more development to the characters. The family banter was a bit much and there were times where Valentine's selfishness in the book turned me off from wanting to continue reading. There were several times where I kept thinking this is simply an Italian version of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" and how I just wanted to eat delicious Italian food.  For that part, it reminded me of summer 2001 when I was roaming the streets of Italy while I studied abroad. 

Overall, I would give this book three stars. I do enjoy Adriana Trigiani as an author and I look forward to reading more of her novels.

Thank you Italy Book tours for this opportunity. 

Friday, August 1, 2014

Cheers to 2 years in Austin

Today marks our 2 year anniversary of moving to Austin. As much as I wish we lived closer to my family we have been very grateful for how things are working out. 
Tonight we are hosting our wonderful neighbors/our very first friends we made over for dinner. 
The best free "toy". Oh how Elle loved playing with these boxes during our first few days in the house.

To continue with our tradition of a family weekend stay-cation we decided to try out a new resort. We are going to stay at Hyatt Lost Pines this year. Our original plan was to visit the Texas Gulf Coast but  there is a really bad seaweed infestation this summer. Elle has been begging to see seashells and sandcastles so this was our plan B. They have a lazy river, man-made beach, s'mores at night, live music, movies with popcorn on the porch, story time in the morning and crafts in the afternoon for little ones. I am also hoping to sneak away to their spa if time allows. 

We really need this time to come together as a family and to focus on what matters. 
Quality family time.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

ella+mila Nail Polish

One of my daughter's favorite activities is polishing nails. She is always asking for me to polish her nails and sometimes tries to polish mine. Knowing how harsh chemicals can be in certain polishes I am always trying to use a child friendly polish. 

I recently came across a mother/daughter nail polish line called Ella+Mila. Their motto is "polish with love" referring to being "5 free". Not only are their polishes free of harsh chemicals, they are also chip resistant, fast drying, 100% vegan, never tested on animals, and offer a wide variety of colors!

They offer a "mommy" size bottle and a "me" size bottle so mommy and daughter can have coordinating manicures and pedicures. 

If you are looking for a special gift to buy for a mom or child ella+mila also offers gift sets! So many cute packaging options and the gift sets can also be customized! 

Here is my daughter wearing 'Kiss The Frog' on her toes!

The nail polish went on nicely and dried very fast! Fast drying nail polish is a must with little ones.

* I was provided with a free mommy and me nail polish set for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

To learn more about ella+mila be sure to like their Facebook page.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Motherhood Mondays: Playing at the Thinkery

We had a fun family day playing at the Childrens' Museum on Sunday. We had a lot of messy fun and stayed cooled at the same time as it was hot outside!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Ice Cream

Today is National Ice Cream Day! 

Enjoy a cool ice cream treat today and if you're looking for a fun summer project for your little ones how fun is this ice cream play dough activity!

images via pinterest

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Pretty Cookbooks + Paris + San Francisco = Love

I was at Crate and Barrel this week where I spied these cookbooks. Pretty sure they would rather live at my house than at Crate and Barrel.

 Nothing is better than a little neighborhood bakery and hello butter! 
You know if butter is in the title it's going to be good!

 The next time I go back to San Francisco I'm making a stop at Miette.

and last but not least a Paris book! I love collection French coffee book and so Le Petit Paris finger foodie book is a definite must as both my husband and I love French cuisine. 

Plus, not only did the recipes look manageable they all would look pretty sitting out on my kitchen counter. Just a small hint incase my husband finds himself reading this post.