Archive for the ‘lifestyle’ Category

No-Fuss BBQ Shreded Chicken

Friday, October 24th, 2014

There is nothing as tasty on a brisk autumn evening than a warm, slow-cooker meal .

This BBQ shredded chicken is as simple and delicious as it gets.

No-Fuss BBQ Shreded Chicken

Ingredients:

4-6 chicken breast (depending on size)

20 oz barbeque sauce (our favorite is Sweet Baby Ray’s)

20 oz original Coke

Directions:

Put all ingredients in crock-pot and cook on low for 6 hours. Shred chicken. You can drain the liquid before shredding if you like, but we like to keep it saucy.

Serve on a roll, salad, rice…the possibilities are endless. This is such an easy and inexpensive meal, we love it!

Recipe adapted from HERE.

Food Station for Babies

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

Feeding two young babies at the table can be challenging. When Brock’s home, he has one and I have the other, but it’s a constant battle of ‘please pass this” and “are you done with that?”. To help relieve some of the crazy I put together this food station that has helped us out tremendously!

boxwood clippings_food staion for babies

I got a tray that fits nicely on our lazy Suzanne, and then stocked it with all of the essentials. Our goal is to never have to leave the table mid-feed once we’re there with our homemade baby food (link HERE).

Our Go-To Items Are:

Bowls

Spoons

Bibs

Wipes

Snacks

Oatmeal

I must say this system has been WORKING!!! We’re getting the feeding down like magic!

Have you guys been re-organizing or tweaking a problem area in your homes? Do share!

How to Make Homemade Baby Food: Stage One

Friday, October 17th, 2014

We knew making our own baby food would be healthier choice for the girls, but we had no idea would be so easy, fast, and how much money it would save!!!

The girls’ favorite right now is pureed butternut squash…here’s how to make it.

boxwood clippings_homemade baby food, so easy

First prep squash: peel, de-seed, and cube.

boxwood clippings_homemade baby food, so easy

Next, steam until tender.

Finally, blend with a little of the water left from steaming to puree.

THESE BPA-free Munchkin trays are perfect to freeze the puree.

boxwood clippings_easy homemade baby food

Just pop out 1-2 cubes per serving, and you can always mix in a little rice cereal if you want it to be more filling.

We’re sure your babe will be squealing with delight, and you’ll be squealing too!

Lovely Black Leggings for $5

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

These days I keep myself pretty low-key until it’s time to leave the door.

It’s kinda a ‘mummy uniform’ and usually entails black leggings and a tee. Simple and comfortable without looking like a Hobo is my goal!

boxwood clippings_$5 leggings

My favorite pair of leggings are actually from Walgreens (link HERE) and are 2 for $10…holler!

For that price it’s way do-able to have several ‘go-to’ pairs for quick changes after these lil’ munchkins get me all messy cakes!

Do you have a go-to look? Do share!

 

The 5 Minute Stewed Apple

Friday, October 10th, 2014

One of our go-to desserts this time of year are delicious stewed apples…

boxwood clippings_5 mintues stewed apple

Ingredients:

apples (any type)

1 tbsp brown sugar

sliver of butter

dash of cinnamon

dash of ground cloves

Directions:

Core your apple and place in microwavable dish.

Blend sugar and spices. Play around with amounts and different spices, to make your own special blend.

Layer inside cored apple teeny dabs of butter and sugar blend.

Microwave 4-5 mins and allow to cool a little before serving.

This is a perfect and warm dessert that isn’t too heavy or calorie-ridden. Although…you could always serve with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream for extra deliciousness ;)

Holler Dollar: Fairy Wings

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

I was undecided on the girls’ Halloween costumes this year, but knew I wanted something easy and adorable.

The Dollar Tree came to my rescue again with these fairy wings (link HERE). Matched with clothes they already had: a onesie, cardigan, tutu, leggings and ballet shoes…Elizabeth transformed into one pretty cute fairy!

boxwood clippings_holler dollar fairy wings

boxwood clippings_holler dollar fairy wings

I think the only thing cuter will be when we double the fun on the actual night. Hannah was asleep for the dress rehearsal!

 Do you have any quick and thrifty costume ideas? Do share!

Target Tuesday

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

For a shopaholic like myself, the change of season always brings a little heart palpitation when I see the new things at Target! The store is packed full of cozy goodness right now! Here are just a few things I am dying over…
boxwood clippings_target tuesday

 Aztec Weekender (link HERE).

In love with THESE copper bar stools.

I love copper measuring cups! See HERE and measuring spoons HERE.

Bark wreath (link HERE).

Lovely Threshold plaid throw HERE.

 Have you had any great Target finds lately?

 

The Easier and Tastier S’more!

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

Did you know that in England we don’t have Graham Crackers?

Our husbands think it’s nuts that we grew up without this simple cookie, but we don’t feel deprived because the English equivalent is much better! The Digestive. The name really doesn’t do it justice but trust us…they’re delish.

Anyhow, the milk chocolate version are perfect for s’mores because the chocolate melts fast and is the perfect amount paired with the roasted marshmallow.

boxwood clippings_the cheating way to make a delishous s'more!

boxwood clippings_the cheating way to make a delishous s'more!

I’ve been craving a campfire up the canyon all summer but it didn’t happen. However these little babies made at home over my stove where honestly just as great.

YUM!

Luckily, you can find Digestives at Walmart for about $3, and also at World Market.

Enjoy!

$10 Statement Necklace

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

Grocery shopping becomes so much more exciting when you find a pretty little something!

I spied THIS necklace at my local Walmart for only $10!!!

boxwood clippings_$10 statement necklace from walmart

It’s perfect to jazz up my basics, and would make a wonderful present too. Anyone Christmas shopping yet?

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip + Crasins Granola

Friday, September 26th, 2014

Our sis-in-law, Kimberly is the most impressive cook. She makes things from scratch whenever possible and is always spoiling us with her yummy treats.

One of our favorites, is THIS Ina Garten granola recipe:

boxwood clippings_yummy chocolate chip and crasin granola

Ingredients:

4 cups old fashioned oats (we used these GF ones)

2 cups sweetened shredded coconut

2 cups sliced almonds

3/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup honey

craisins (amount to taste)

chocolate chips (our variation! amount to taste)

Directions:

Toss dry ingredients together, then in a separate bowl whisk oil and honey. Pour the liquids over the oat mixture and stir until coated. Pour onto a 13×18 inch baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees. Sir occasionally until the mixture turns a nice even brown, 30-45 minutes. A lighter brown will result with a chewy granola with more clumps, a darker brown will by more crunchy.

Remove the granola from the oven and pour into a large bowl, allow to cool and then stir in anywhere between one to 4 cups of craisins and chocolate chips. Makes about 12 cups. Store in an airtight container.

boxwood clippings_homemade granola gift

This is the epitome of decadence, and the perfect way to start an autumn day!

It would make a perfect present for this time of year too!

Chocolate for breakfast is so not diet friendly, but is so very good for the soul!

Three words…nom, nom, nom!

Baby Bat Hat only $5 at Old Navy!

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

This makes me laugh so hard!

boxwood clippings_baby dressed as bat_old navy

ONESIE | HAT

Jane is all ready for Halloween with her $5 hat from Old Navy.

Pair with anything black and I have the cutest little bat around…but I couldn’t resist the cute onesie for $6!

10 Things We Buy at Paper Source

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Our first visits to Paper Source were pretty magical! We adore this store! Paper Source offers basic gift and craft supplies, one of a kind gift ideas items, as well as all of our favorite stationary brands such as Rifle Paper Company, Snow & Graham, and Cavallini. Here are the things we buy:

10 things from paper source

 

1. Craft kits: We can’t wait to make all THESE adorable crafts with our girls. Isn’t THIS wreath kit impressive?!

2. Ribbon: THIS is Em’s favorite ribbon EVER!

3. Greeting Cards: We save more expensive greeting cards for milestone birthdays and anniversaries. Loving THIS one. They also offer packs of cards at a great price, but they sell out quick! THIS card is only $12.50 for a pack of 10.

4. Stickers: A very cheap and easy way to make your own cards, gift tags, place settings etc. We love THESE basic b+w ones. 24 for $2.50.

5. Calendars: Even now most of our scheduling is on google calendar, Paper Source convinces us every year we still need a beautiful one too! See the full selection of 2015 calendars HERE. Em uses hers exclusively as a birthday calendar…see HERE.

6. Gift wrap basics: We love Paper Source’s selection of basic gift wrap, especially for favors and Christmas. We love THESE clear, fold-over and food-safe cellophane bags. 100 count for $6! Loving THIS Christmas gift wrap set from Cavillini. See all gift wrap HERE.

7. Pens: THIS one is our current fave, and seriously makes our handwriting a little better! $1.95

8. Single sheets of wrapping paper: We rarely use these pretty papers to actually wrap gifts. Instead we frame them and hang them as art. THIS one is going in Jane’s room.

9. Twine: Lasts forever. Amazing price! See HERE.

10. Gift Ideas: The store and website is filled with great gift ideas. We love THIS tea towel, THIS art set for the kiddies, and a good notebook is always a good idea!

Do you have any favorites?

A Perfect Fall Panini

Friday, September 19th, 2014

With fall in the air we had this perfect panini for lunch the other day…

boxwood clippings_fall panini, brie and apple with chicken

First, we spread the brie over our bread, then layered thin slices of granny apple and rotisserie chicken and grilled as normal in the panini press.

We loved the combination of the creamy cheese and crunchy apple…the perfect comfort food on a slightly chilly day.

Sar added a little brown mustard on hers for a little kick.

Playing around with such simple ingredients is fun! What are your fall faves?

Look For Less Pave Link Bracelet

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

I love a good link bracelet and especially love THIS sparkly one.

My experience with pave and costume jewelry has not been good, eventually one the little stones falls out..so I am opting for THIS way less expensive one.

boxwood clippings_pave bracletA whopping $100 difference in price! Wahoo! Loving this look for less!

 

 

Target Tuesday

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

boxwoodclippings target tuesday banner

I feel like I’ve discovered a gold mine browsing through all amazing options exclusive to target.com!

I had no idea Target offered such a huge selection of home furnishings.

Here’s a little peek at the goodness:

boxwood clippings_sept target tues

one | two | three | four | five | six | seven | eight | nine

Buying furniture online is a big commitment without seeing the piece in person.

Here are a few tips to keep it a no-stress shopping experience…

1. Scale is everything! It’s hard to get an idea of size by pictures. Look at dimensions and tape them off in the space you are shopping for before you purchase.

2. Look at shipping costs! Target.com is pretty great in that almost everything ships for free with a purchase over $50. The exception to this is large items, which will have a disclaimer next to the ‘add to cart’ button if the item requires extra shipping. Even though the surplus shipping charge on large items is really reasonable compared to other stores, we sometimes wait for a sale on the item to cover this additional cost.

3. Note the return policy! One of the greatest things about shopping at target.com is the ability to return to a store and avoid paying return shipping, this includes most furniture! Make sure to click on the ‘shipping & returns’ tab to make sure you can order the item, experiment with it in your space and have the ability to return to a store if it doesn’t work.

Can’t beat furniture shopping in you pjs at home!

Lemon and Poppy Seed Bundt Cake

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Bundt cakes always look so beautiful don’t they?

Last month when Downeast had their tent sale I was lucky enough to find THIS Williams and Sonoma pan for only $5, holler! I’ve been dying to give it a try so I whipped up the recipe that was on the packaging, and added some lemon and poppy seeds.

It was so delish, and picture perfect!

boxwood clippings_lemon and poopyseed bunt cake recipe

You Will Need:

3 cups of flour

1 1/2 tsp of baking powder

3/4 tsp of salt

2 1/4 sticks of unsalted butter

1 2/3 cups of sugar

4 lightly beaten eggs

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups of milk

4 drops of lemon extract

3 tbsp of poppy seeds

powdered sugar for dusting

How To:

With all ingredients out at room temperature, prep the oven by placing rack in lower third of oven, and preheat to 325 degrees. Grease and flour pan generously.

In a bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In another bowl beat the butter on medium speed until creamy (about 30 seconds). Add sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Add the eggs a little at a time, and then the vanilla, and mix.

Add the flour mixture gradually in three sessions, followed by a bit of milk mixing well after each. Be sure to scrape down edge of bowl and mix everything well.

Spread batter into prepped pan, and bake until cake begins to pull away from the sides and passes the toothpick test! 65-70 minutes. Move the pan from oven to wire tack and let cake cool for 15 minutes in pan. Tap the pan gently to loosed the cake and turn upside down onto cake stand. Cool for at least two hours and dust with powered sugar or glaze right before serving.

For The Glaze:

powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest.

I can’t remember the exact measurements, but it’s all preference anyhow. Start with a cup of powdered sugar and mix in a little lemon juice until the desired consistency. Remember once drizzled on cake, it always seems runnier than in the bowl! Sprinkle lemon zest over the top!

Em’s Everyday Makeup

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

When I got married I had baggage alright…bins and bins full of expensive makeup!

Once I had to start budgeting with someone else I started experimenting with cheaper makeup instead of my usual expensive brands..

Five years later and I’ve narrowed down my everyday makeup to just five items that I love, love love!

boxwood clippings_makeup essentials

Neutrogena sunscreen: This sunscreen not only protects my face from the sun but also is a great moisturizer before applying makeup. Both Costco and Target often have this on sale.

Covergirl concealer: For those northern European bags under my eyes. This is as good as anything I’ve tried…which has been a lot! Available at any drugstore.

Guerlain bronzing powder: Now I am super white because of all that sunscreen, I defo need THIS bronzer. This is my one ‘worth the splurge’ makeup product. I apply a little all over my face and a little extra on the apples of my cheeks and nose instead of using blush. I have tried lots of cheaper bronzers and nothing looks as good, and this one lasts at least a year. Do you have any good ones to recommend? Sarah also raves about this product, see HERE.

Wet n Wild eyeshadow in ‘Nutty': THIS $.99 eyeshadow is amazing! I was a MAC eyeshadow girl for many years and this is just as good… I just use it to line the outer corners of my eyes. Available at Rite Aid/Walgreens.

Maybelline ‘full n soft’ mascara: Non-clumpy mascara that can be layered and comes off really easily at night. I hate sticky mascaras. Available at any grocery/or drugstore.

My routine takes less than five minutes, lasts just as long and looks just as good as the products I used to use.

Have you had any great finds with inexpensive makeup? Please share!

Black and White Products for Baby

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

It’s no secret that on this blog we’re obsessed with black and white. In our book you simply can’t go wrong with this color combo, even when it comes to baby.

These items have been some of our favorite baby products. Even though we’ve made the purchase on our taste, we also feel they are the most practical of choices when it comes to the big ticket items. Black and white are gender neutral and classic, we’ll be using them for whatever babies are in our future; making them the most sensible, thrifty, and prettiest of options.

How do you like them?

 

boxwood clippings_10 black + white baby items

No. 1: I about died when I saw this top at Gap (see HERE), I’ll be getting it in two sizes to make sure the twins will be rocking it both fall and winter.

No. 2: Em’s diaper bag is as classy as it gets, I’m only slightly jealous! (see HERE)

N0. 3: These shoes are only $14.99 and as cute as can be, another purchase in multiple sizes! (see HERE)

N0. 4: Our Mama Roo has been a life saver, and a must if you ever want to take a shower! The black and white and cool design fits into our home beautifully, and hasn’t been one of those pesky baby items we’re dying to be done with. I only wish they made it in adult size! (see HERE)

No. 5: You’ve all heard that black and white is great for baby development right? So all of these products are very baby friendly, but especially toys like these. We just love it. (see HERE)

No. 6: Swaddle blankets are our faveeee. But a black and white version is our ‘super fave’. (see HERE)

No. 7: I’ve been on the hunt for the best binkie clip, and this is it! L.O.V.E the Dirty Dancing reference! (see HERE)

No. 8: Our Bumble Ride twin stroller with bassinets has been our lifesaver. I can’t say enough how much we adore this product. I actually make it out of the house because of this bad boy. It’s honestly amazing. We bought black A. because it was on sale and B. because I want to keep it forever and ever. Yes I’m in love! (see HERE)

N0. 9: Another true love, the Stokke High Chair. This is a family classic that we just LOVE. There’s soooo many great things about this product, but the main one is that it grows with the child. Seriously, our girlies are in theirs now and they can still use them as an adult. Our baby brothers still fit in there’s and they are giants at 6 foot, 7 inches! (see HERE)

N0. 10: Just some adorable sockies to match our theme. LOVE! (see HERE)

……….

boxwood clippings_twin girls in black and cream

Elizabeth and Hannah rocking the trend! Be sure to follow us on Instagram for more!

Click HERE!

 

The Perfect Fall Salad

Friday, September 5th, 2014

September is here and we couldn’t be happier for the next few months. We made the most delicious salad, which just seems perfect for this time of year!

Butternut Squash, Beet + Goat Cheese Salad

boxwood clippings_butternut squash, beet and goat cheese salad

Ingredients:

Roasted Butternut Squash

Beets

Goat Cheese

Spring Mix

Balsamic Vinegar

Directions:

We assembled salad with beets and squash first, added a large serving of greens on top, and garnished with goat cheese, pepper and balsamic vinegar.

Absolute perfection on a crisp afternoon, we hope you like it too!

Baby Moccasins

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Oh how we love the look of a little chubby baby in a pair of sweet moccasins!

There are a lot out there with a huge price variation….

At the lowest price point of $10 or under, Old Navy offers THIS classic mocc and THIS  cute bootie. Faux materials, but pretty adorable for the price don’t you think?

 

boxwood clippings_baby moccasinsIn the mid-range, we have classic Minnetonka moccasins. We have several pairs and they are sooo comfortable. We love the simplicity of these moccs. They are a great price for a great product. These booties are available at Nordies, click HERE and HERE.

boxwood clippings_baby moccasinsLastly, we have the high-end moccs. These boutique moccs offer soft leather and oodles of enticing color choices. We love the look of THIS bow pair from The Coral Pear, and the color of THIS platinum pair from Freshly Picked.

boxwood clippings_baby moccasins

As new mummies we’d love your input!

Where do you stand on baby moccasins? Are you happy with getting the look with a faux pair from Old Navy or is it worth the splurge on an oh-so-pretty high-end pair?