Holiday PJ’s for the Fam

Disclaimer: Christmas is in a few weeks and everything from here on out will most likely be Christmas related. This is great though, right?

This year I got some matching pj’s for the kids and I; and I thought it would be fun to share a few of my favourite pj’s for the whole family with you. Who doesn’t love a new pair of pj’s for the Holidays?

I would have to say my favourite ones this Holiday season are the buffalo plaid sets from Old Navy. I bought a set for each of the kids and myself, and we have worn them multiple times. We decorated the tree in them and have had hot chocolate (with extra marshmallows of course) in them on more than one occasion.

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They also have the same print in men’s bottoms; however, no luck on the tops. I can’t imagine why…

All of these are from Old Navy and they have so many colour options to choose from. I love the thermal sets and of course the classic flannel for men.

H&M also has cute sets for adults and children. I love this flannel set for women because it has this pretty gold thread woven through it that almost makes them feel fancy. Is that a thing? Fancy pj’s? If not, it should be. I mean after all, pj’s are an acceptable form of attire on Christmas.

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Cute, right? This set is under $35 and fits true to size.

These kids sets are also from H&M and I thought the reindeer was so cute! I love the little plaid set for girls; both are under $18.

I also found a cute pair of men’s flannels that look super comfy.

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Carters always has such fun pj’s during the Holidays. When the kids were babies, 95% of their clothes were from Carters and I always have a feeling of nostalgia whenever I walk through the store.

Everly actually has last year’s penguin pj’s and I think this year’s are even cuter. These sets are $20 and are oh so cozy!

Last but not least: a plaid flannel set I found for myself while grocery shopping last weekend. I purchased these for under $35 plus an additional 30% off and they are so soft and warm.

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They’re from Joe Fresh and they had so many other patterns and different colours of plaid.

I have been all about red plaid but loved this blue/green combo. I would size up a size in these.

That’s my round up for pj’s for the holidays and you better believe after I pick the kids up from school today we will be changing into pj’s for the rest of the night.

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The Best Apple Crisp Recipe

One of my favourite desserts to make in the Fall is apple crisp. I take the kids apple picking every year and apple crisp is always a staple in our home from Thanksgiving until Christmas baking starts (Thanksgiving is the beginning of October, here in Canada).

This recipe is definitely one you will want to add to your Favourites! The juicy sweet filling and crisp oat topping will have you going back for seconds! Don’t forget to add a dollop of your favourite vanilla ice cream.

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Ingredients

Topping

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup quick oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup unsalted butter , diced into cubes

Filling

1.5 lbs sliced cortland apples
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
2 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF and lightly grease an 8×8 baking dish or deep dish pie plate.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together all dry topping ingredients.
  3. Add the diced butter and mix together with your fingertips. Place in the fridge until needed.
  4. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together melted butter and flour until well combined.  Add in lemon juice and vanilla extract. Whisk in brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Mix until well combined.
  5. Pour mixture over sliced apples and toss lightly. Place apples into the baking dish.
  6. Removing topping mixture from the fridge and sprinkle crumble evenly over apple mixture.
  7. Place into oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and allow 5 minutes to cool. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

Enjoy!

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Maxton’s Bedroom Update Part 1

When we moved into this house last summer; it was a brand new build and everything was the typical “builder’s beige”. I knew we would only be here a couple of years so I didn’t want to go crazy decorating the bedrooms. Maxton and Everly both had twin size beds in our old house so I kept their beds the same. Everly’s headboard and footboard were an oak colour (which I got from my Mom) and I spray painted it white before assembling her bed.

Recently I had been thinking about switching the kids over to double beds. Mainly because it would give me more space when I am laying in bed with them; and specifically for Everly because with the amount of stuffies she has in her bed now, there isn’t much room left for her.

My Mom had a fairly new double mattress she was going to get rid of and she asked me if I wanted it. I said absolutely and started hunting on Wayfair for a double bed frame for Maxton. I found the perfect one and it was on sale! There were some issues with it getting to me, but when all the pieces finally arrived, it was perfect. I was so excited for him to see it.

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I wanted bedding that would grow with him; and then I could add items throughout his room that would match his current interests. I found his comforter at Home Sense along with the hockey sheets (which he loves).

The body pillow I also found at Home Sense and the Toronto Maple Leafs blanket I purchased from Walmart.

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It took me a while to find the perfect nightstand for him. I finally found one I liked at Walmart and it was under $80. I decided to only get one for now, for the one side of his bed. He has so many little lego tables and toy bins around his room; and right now he has a storage ottoman in the other corner of the bedroom.

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His name sign I am still debating where to place (I will share about its final home when I share the second part of this post). It was made by a local handmade business that I have shared a few times on Instagram; and I actually really like the piece sitting on his nightstand right now.

I will share the rest of his room once I finish up the dresser remodel (which has been ongoing for over two years).

Sources:

Bed Frame: Wayfair
Bedding: Home Sense
Sheets: Home Sense
Toronto Maple Leafs Blanket: Walmart
Body Pillow: Home Sense
You Will Move Mountains & All Good Things Are Wild And Free Frames: Home Sense
Super Hero Picture: Home Sense
Night Stand: Walmart
Lamp: Home Sense
Picture Frame: Walmart
Basket: Walmart
Carpet: Home Sense
Name Sign: The Squirrelly Scroller

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Minecraft Party: Maxton Turns Seven

A few weeks ago Maxton turned seven and we celebrated with a Minecraft themed party. He loves video games right now and that was his gamer theme of choice. I had a few ideas on what I wanted to do for the party, most of it just came from watching Maxton play the game; and asking him what characters he wanted to see incorporated into the party.

He asked for Herobrine, a Creeper, Pig and TNT. Everything in the world of Minecraft is very geometrical, so I figured it would be fairly easy.

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The sign and balloons I purchased from Party City and the “Max” portion of the sign I made myself.

I found some shoe boxes and used construction paper to transform them into TNT, a Creeper and Herobrine.

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I asked Maxton if he wanted to do a “Pin the tail on the Pig” and he thought it was a funny idea so I purchased some bristol board and glued a pig made out of pieces of construction paper onto it.

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He actually turned out pretty cute and it was so easy to do!

I purchased plain green paper bags for the gift bags, and just cut out black pieces of construction paper to glue on to them to turn them into little creepers.

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The cake I had made by a home-based cake decorator and she did a fantastic job! I was so pleased with how it turned out; and it tasted amazing! It was a chocolate cake, at Maxton’s request.

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6D3EAE61-B5BA-4D19-BE04-C2D62DFFC475.JPGMaxton had such a fun time, and said it was his favourite party yet!

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I love planing the kids birthday parties and I am always excited to see what theme they choose each year.

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If you are looking to plan a Minecraft party for your kiddo, I hope this offered you some inspiration!

Follow me on Instagram @pinkandblueblog

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Back to School with Mabel’s Labels

Where did the summer go?! I can’t believe the kids are back to school tomorrow.

Today is all about getting everything ready to go: backpacks, shoes, school supplies… which means labelling all of these items too.

I have been using Mabel’s Labels since Maxton started daycare. A friend gifted me some on his first birthday and I loved them! I have continued ordering them ever since.

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They have so many different options and designs it’s so hard to choose! They have labels for all ages and you can shop what you’re looking for by their suggested categories:  school, daycare, camp, university, new baby or travel.

I love their Ultimate Back-to-School Combo because it has everything I need to label all of their items for school. The combo pack includes

  • 40 Mini Custom Name Stickers: 38mm x 8mm (1-1/2″ x 5/16″)
  • 70 Tag Mates™ Stick On Clothing Labels: 21mm x 10mm (13/16″ x 3/8″)
  • 16 Custom Shoe Stickers (8 pairs): 33mm (1.3″)
  • 2 Personalized Mini Tags: 30mm x 20mm (1-1/4″ x 3/4″)

This combo is $42 which is such a great price considering what is included, and how long the pack will last.

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All labels are dishwasher safe, microwave safe and waterproof. The clothing labels have never peeled, no matter how many times they have gone through the washer and dryer. I love that I can label their school containers and not have to worry about the labels lifting at the corners after going through the dishwasher.

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They have so many designs, styles and fonts to choose from. I chose the hockey design for Maxton, and the mermaid design for Everly.

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I get a little label happy this time of year, but how can you not with all of their labeling options? They even introduced a new Custom Clothing Stamp that lasts approximately 50 washes and the stamp lasts approximately 1000 applications. I love this idea!

You can shop for your Mabel’s Labels here, and use coupon code PINKANDBLUE for 10% off of your order!

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Chocolate Banana Smoothie Popsicles

It always seems like I have a large amount of overripe bananas that end up in the freezer. I can only make so much banana bread/muffins so I like to use them in smoothies too.

For a treat one day I made the kids chocolate banana smoothies which later turned into smoothie popsicles. You can make smoothie popsicles with pretty much anything you like, but this one was a big hit.

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Ingredients
2 frozen bananas
2 tbsp cocoa powder
2 cups milk

Instructions
1. Add frozen bananas, cocoa powder and milk into blender and blend until smooth and desired consistency is reached. Add more milk if required.

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2. Coat inside  of popsicle containers with chocolate syrup

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3. Pour blended mixture into containers

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4. Freeze for 8+ hours

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Someone couldn’t resist testing them out before I was done taking pictures. 🙂

This recipe is quick and easy and is on repeat throughout the summer in our house!

Enjoy!

Follow me on Instagram @pinkandblueblog

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Strategy List vs To-Do List

Last month when I attended the Atelier Conference, it really got me thinking about how I organize my time and my day. The Mon-Fri, 9-5 part of my day is pretty much spoken for because I work full-time outside of the home, but it’s the in-between time. Brainstorming my next blog post while driving my kids to daycare, cooking dinner and turning it into a recipe to share, getting dressed for work and snapping a quick photo before leaving the house. Sometimes I feel like every second of the day is accounted for.

I used to organize my time with to-do lists; but it felt like my lists were endless. I felt like I would have high hopes for things I wanted to accomplish and ended up being disappointed for the things I didn’t do. My to-do lists were feeling like torture.

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I felt like it was starting to measure my self-worth. If I wasn’t cleaning and doing laundry on the weekend because I was spending time with my kids, I was frustrated come Sunday night that I had piles of laundry and a messy house. If I was cleaning and doing laundry and my kids were asking me to play with them, I felt guilty I was trying to get things done. Something had to give.

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Small tasks that weren’t strategic were taking up a lot of mind space. Do you know what I mean when I say mind space? I would obsess about things I didn’t get done, or what I did get done wasn’t good enough. How could I do/be better? It had to stop. Enter: the strategy list.

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A written plan of action to achieve something.

Example: One strategy could be to make use of your idle time. Maybe while you are waiting for your water to boil for dinner, you wash a few dishes; or while your kids are in the bath, you clean the sink, counter and toilet.

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With blogging, I used to sit down at the beginning of the month and write down all of the blog posts I wanted to get done within the month. Come the end of the month I was frustrated the posts weren’t crossed off. I would start multiple posts and jump back and forth. Now, I just strategize thoughts of posts and if I have started them and I am actively working on them, I count that as a win. The “publish” button doesn’t give me anxiety anymore – after all, blogging is supposed to be fun. I strategize what the post will be about, and if I have started piecing it together, I can cross it off my list. It’s not done, but the plan and thought process is there – the brainstorming is done.

Creating a “completed” list can also give you a sense of accomplishment. It can help you focus on what you did do, as opposed to what you didn’t do. I have gotten into this habit and it has made a huge difference, and freed up some mind space.

Try it out, you may find it makes a difference.

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