Cute Little Pre-K Bento

Sophia loves to stay after school for her "lunch bunch" program. Since I don't really work outside the home during the day, its not really a common occurrence. Earlier this week we took a mini day trip so we let her stay late so that we would have more time to travel.

This little bento came from BentoUSA.com about 3 years ago. In it Sophia has jasmine rice and little animal soy sauce bottles, a hot dog, black olives, goldfish, kiwi with pink sprinkles and little candy letters. 

Sophia's favorite food ever is rice and soy sauce. Lately she's been eating a wider variety of foods but not without a struggle. It is a constant work in progress! I'm sad to say that the kiwi came back home in the lunchbox. Boo!


1st campout of 2016!

Oh, hellloooooo there.
I have meant to update all week but things have been busy. Otherwise prioritized. That's ok though! 

Last weekend was super fun! We had our first camp out of the year! It has been a LONG time (like, since Sophia was 11 months old!!) since we went camping. The last time we went, it was October, and the days were warm but the nights were way too cold for me. I woke Andy up at like, 2am and had him start the car so the kids & I could sit in and get warm while he packed up our campsite to take us home! It was awful and I still hear about it. 
Naturally. haha.

So Saturday morning we lounged around and had coffee, then loaded up our gear and headed out to Mount Magazine. There's a lake trail that starts at the lake (also called the bluff trail, I hear) and its about ten miles from the lake to the bluffs at the top of the mountain. We obviously knew we wouldn't do ten miles with our kiddos, so we just planned to hike at least two and see how they were doing. We made it 2.3 miles before they just couldn't hack any more. It was super warm! We were sweating and wearing tank tops. IN FEBRUARY! I'm loving this winter (although it actually IS cold outside right now, dang). 

Super cool tree- I see an elephant when I look at it. I love elephants, and collect them. :) 

We let Olivia choose the spot to put our tent and we were settled nicely between the trail and a spring fed creek. This was excellent because I grossly underestimated how much water we would need! Andy & I refilled our water bottles from the spring, and we of course had plenty of tap water in other bottles for the kids. I wouldn't want the kids to drink unfiltered water from the earth. I was most praying that Andy & I didn't get sick. We didn't. WHEW!

For our first  camp out, we brought canned Chef Boyardee products. It was super easy (although not healthy) and the kids had a blast cooking the cans on the hot rocks. We also brought along KIND bars, banana chips, apples, and clementines for healthier options. Oh, and PopTarts for breakfast (they're not allowed at our house because of.. well, I'll write about that silly story another time).

The low Saturday night was 57, so the weather was actually spectacular. It did rain on us, but barely. The sprinkles began around 8:30, but we had the rain cover on the tent so no worries. We did go to bed about 8:45, and it was way too early. We didn't have sleeping pads for under our sleeping bags so we were basically just on the ground. It was SO uncomfortable. Once the kids got to sleep they stayed asleep though. My old bones tossed and turned all night, I think I woke up every single hour! I just kept thinking to myself, this is like the Lambchop song.. "the song that never ends," only its the night that never ends! ha! 

We all woke up to the sound of an owl HOO-HOOing and that was super cool. I don't think I've ever heard an owl before. I mean, maybe, but this is the first time I remember. We pretty much packed up and hiked back to the car as soon as we were all awake. It was a super fun trip but the kids are definitely sick of hiking and camping, so we are taking this weekend off. That's ok with me though, Andy is taking me to to driving range and I'm going to try my hand at golf. We will see how that goes. :) 

Tuesday morning after we dropped Sophia off at school, we went to Pack Rat in Fayetteville to check out some hiking boots and new packs. I'm really hoping that we can spend some time this summer doing long hikes/camping trips without the kids. It would be such a fun experience for Andy & me to have together. 

Here are a couple of the things I found that I love::
These things were pretty light on the foot, but seriously they're HUGE. I felt like I had on weighted clown shoes in every single pair of hiking boots I tried on! 

Something for Sophia- a camelbak! Its cute and small, so she can carry her own water. I think that getting the kids their own cute hiking gear will get them excited to spend more time outdoors. 

This Osprey KOBY pack doesn't come with its own water pouch but it does have the space for it and the elastics for the water straw. This is Olivia's size and both kids will probably get one of these for Olivia's birthday.

I tried on a lot of packs, I fell in LOVE with an Osprey that didn't have customizable hip/torso pieces and it hurt my feelings. haha. This pack was pretty good but obviously not in this color. Still shopping. The sales woman at PackRat was SO kind and helpful, I'll definitely be going back there when I make the purchase. 


Bentos [2.14-2.19]

As a family, we eat way too much processed junk.

I used to be so, so good at keeping my kids shielded from kid-focused marketing when it comes to franken-food, and keeping it out of our home.

Then, life happened and I just kind of stopped. I feel so bad! So, the past couple of weeks I have been making an effort to get us back on that healthy eating wagon as a family. Not banning candy or chips, but definitely cutting way, way back. The kids do not NEED cookies every week to survive (and lets face it, I don't, either). 

Here are a couple of lunches from the week. I don't think I'll ever not have pepperonis in the house for Sophia. Those are her all time favorite. But we are cutting back on them. Olivia is much easier since she LOVES all fruits and most vegetables. 

Olivia's got the Lunchbots Uno container, full of veggies and a trail mix that I got at Aldi. It has peanut butter chips, chocolate chips, almonds, craisins, golden raisins, peanuts, and cashews in it. She's got a side of fruit and a side of ranch for dipping her veggies in.

Olivia is always saying "derp" and things are "derpy," so I used letter picks to spell out DERP in her pineapple. :)

Sophia's lunch is super simple but it still was "too much" for her-- she refused to eat the cheddar stars (she currently only likes babybel and laughing cow wedges as far as cheese goes). She also LIKES kiwi but she's super weird about when she will eat it. This time, she didn't want to eat it. So she asked for seconds on the clementine (which she got, and last month she wouldn't even eat clementines at all). 

What are you doing to entice your children to eat healthier? Or are you? Do you focus on that for your kids, or are you just happy they eat at all? When I was growing up there was not a real focus on fruits or vegetables. My sister and I both love them, and our brothers not so much. Its amazing how the tastebuds work!


Family Hike + the active family

Good morning! I have been dying to update this little blog all week long but I just haven't been able to get to it! I think that being so busy is a good thing though. Next week will move a little slower and I am happy for that and also wondering what I will use to fill the time. Just kidding, there's plenty to do. Laundry and dishes never end, right!?

I have been trying to focus on being more active as a family. Plus, the weather has been phenomenal and why wouldn't we be outside? Two weekends ago we hiked the Lake Alma trail, both kids made it almost four miles! I was so proud! There were some steep climbs in there for the kiddos but they were champs. 

I don't think our time was too bad at all considering Sophia is only 5! 

Last weekend we went out to the Ozark National Forest and hiked the rim trail of White Rock Mountain. SO. GORGEOUS. The weather was amazing and the views were perfection!

This trail was a lot easier than Lake Alma, simply because it was not as long or as steep. Lots of rocks on this trail and SO MANY great places to stop and take in the view!

We let Olivia bring a friend and I think it made the trip much more pleasurable for her. They both had a ton of fun! 

We are headed out to hike a new area in the morning. I'm super excited! We had plans to camp but after re-checking the weather, it looks like rain is moving in and well, we may be ok to camp in the rain but I don't think the kids would enjoy it at all. Maybe next time. 

Overall, I think the family is really enjoying these weekend hikes. I am ready for it to really be spring so we can start overnighting. I am also dying to head back to Tennessee for some hiking with Rachel. Maybe even a week of hiking along the Appalachian Trail! I am dreaming of it. :) 

Until next time, 


ECLP Sticker Love {February}

The title says it all... here's another ECLP sticker love post! Currently obsessing with these!

Loving these 'Be Still' stickers from PlanningFaith!

Also, these elephants from PlanningFaith. I'm not a huge fan of the whole "live laugh love" quote, I think its over used and probably the mantra of every generic somebody out there. However I love elephants and I'm crazy over watercolor right now. 

Navy + Gold = one of my favorite color combos ever. These stickers are from TallulahHoola and I love them!

This gorgeous color scheme is from AddieAndAllie.. and let me just say, so spring!! I'm not going to lie.. I did the first two weeks of February in Valentines themes and I'm sick, sick, sick of the pink. SICK.

And.. lately I've been really obsessed with pineapples. I miss the beach so much, and pineapples make me feel hopeful that I'll be soaking up some sunshine soon enough. Winter is getting me down (even thought is has been a very mild winter here!)

Get these from EclecticallyEmily

LOVE THESE from Poofyfurrs

I love this wash from LoveMyTapes. I have gold pineapple washi already!! :) 

These are very Lilly Pulitzer-esque, and I love them! Get them at RosieRyeAccessories!