Our nautical navy and white striped patio
I’m so excited to share our summer home tour with you today as a part of a group of home design bloggers. I’m sharing our new patio, our front porch, our kid areas and a super fun, super easy 4th of July Campfire S’mores Cone Recipe and setup that you can whip together for the weekend.
4th of July Campfire S'mores Cones
If you’re new here and love easy approachable home design, be sure to check out our laundry room, green home tour, family room, guest room, officeour nursery and big boy room. If you’re a regular, thanks for coming back! Let’s start the tour!
Our New Patio
Our nautical navy and white striped patio
We designed our patio very simply and affordably with only one goal in mind: Dinner outside. This can be dinner with our little family of four, with friends, with neighbors. I just wanted to create outside summer memories with our kids and we’ve already done it so much in the one month we’ve had this space.
Our nautical navy and white striped patio
The white table is from Ikea and the chairs are all from World Market. The navy and white striped chairs are priced super low right now and they are very comfortable.
Our nautical navy and white striped patio
Campfire S’mores Cones Bar
Our nautical navy and white striped patio
I love putting together fun little build-your-own snack stations for the kids. Today I put together a fun 4th of July campfire cone station using the awesome red, white and blue M&M’s®.
Campfire Cone station
It’s basically s’mores in an ice cream cone and instead of roasting them over a fire, You wrap them in foil and grill. They are delicious and super fun to put together. I used chocolate covered caramels, M&M’s®, butterscotch chips, bananas, mini marshmallows and small sugar cones.
4th of July Campfire Cones
So ooey, gooey and delicious! Highly recommend. OK, back to our home tour. :)

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This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/Walmart.

AvoidTheOops blog post (5 of 6)

All Summer long, we’ve enjoyed so many impromptu get-togethers with friends and neighbors. A few years ago, I could not have pulled it off, but I’ve become a solid stocker upper. Is that a thing? I stock up on paper plates, napkins, paper towels, toilet paper and cleaning supplies so we always have enough for ourselves and for any larger gatherings or last minute guests.

Avoid the oops this summer

I keep napkins and plastic forks in a cute little carrier for quick snacks and dinners on the patio.

Impromptu summer gatherings

There is something so wonderful about the less planned events. I love keeping extra toothbrushes, razors, toothpaste and hand wash around too. That way if we have impromptu or unexpected guests, we’re ready to help them be as comfortable as possible. Read More »


Ezra Jude turns two

Mr. Ezra Jude turned two last week. My how two years flew by. We celebrated three times with family. Due to some health issues, we didn’t have a big party this year (like last year) and I honestly don’t think he cared or knew the difference.

Ezra Jude turns two

This sweet boy has completed our family. He is a joyful, funny, compassionate, cuddly little man. Read More »


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CompleteWithGlade #CollectiveBias

Glade top photo (1 of 1)

We just got a small patio in our backyard. The goal for us is simple. We want to live joyfully all summer long and spend hours outside with our boys.

Backyard patio fun

We wanted a space that would allow us to relax, eat lunch outside and spend hours upon hours simply enjoying life in our backyard. Our backyard consists of our patio with a dining table, our driveway which is typically filled with kids and toys such as bubbles, scooters and balance bikes plus our playset. I have wanted to add a fun welcome type of sign to our outdoor decor for some time now.

Outdoor spaces

I settled on creating an easy DIY welcome sign with a fun message. I chose “Hello.” Read More »


Easy Mango Guacamole Recipe

It’s hot in Minnesota! We’re spending the weekend outside (with the pool, of course!). I’m making this delicious, refreshing Mango Guacamole and thought I’d share in case you need a fun refreshing snack! I love that if you have a molcajete (the dish you make authentic guac in), you can do this in one bowl!


  • 3 ripened avocados
  • 1 ripened mango
  • lime juice ¼ cup
  • cilantro ½ cup
  • white onion ½ cup
  • salt 3 teaspoons


  1. In your Molcajete, add half of the diced mangos and mash with the pestle into a pulp.
  2. Then add one avocado and mash into a pulp with the mango.
  3. In a separate bowl mix remaining ingredients, including mango, and add more lime juice if needed.
  4. Fold mixture with pulp inside and serve with tortilla chips.

This is the perfect hot weekend snack!

Affiliate link included. 


A Rad Dad Book1

Jumping in quickly today with a fun Father’s Day gift idea.

I’ve loved Chatbooks for a long time now and after meeting several of their staff members at Alt Summit in January, I just knew they’d be a part of my life going forward. Tiffany makes books constantly with her Instagram feed. So cool!

Now Chatbooks is saving us with the most awesome and adorable Father’s Day partnership. 

Rad Dad Book11

Chatbooks, has teamed up with LA-based children’s book author Dallas Clayton – who has been called the world’s new Dr. Seuss – to create the ultimate Father’s Day gift:  An interactive memory books filled with your family pictures + exclusive Dallas Clayton art.

Introducing A Rad Dad Book! Dallas Clayton makes this Chatbook especially magical with his whimsical illustrations and interactive prompts that kids (and grownups!) can personalize with their own drawings and notes to Dad. Combine Dallas’ art with your own favorite photos of dad to create an epic, personalized Father’s Day gift that will go down in history. All of this comes at the everyday Chatbooks value: photo books start at just $8!

Access A Rad Dad Book here, or download the Chatbooks app and use code RADDAD to start A Rad Dad Book!




This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. This post is sponsored by Huggies Little Swimmers. All opinions are mine alone. #WaterThemDailyCB #CollectiveBias

A backyard water park

Summer is upon us! I can feel it in the air, hear it in the laughter of all of the neighborhood children and smell it thanks to some amazing grill masters nearby!

Backyard water park

We spend much of our summer free time simply playing in our backyard. We refer to it as our own “backyard water park” when asking the boys what we want to do each day and their answer is nearly always “outside” or “play outside” or “swim”.

Backyard water park

When we know the entire day will be spent in the yard, we go all out. Neighbor kids always join the fun and the effort is so worth the joyful laughter and fun had.

Backyard water park

The recipe is simple! Use what you have. Ready for all of the fun and simple ideas?  Read More »


Backyard patio fun

We’ve wanted a small space to eat outside since we bought our home. That dream became a reality last week with our tiny simple stamped concrete patio.

We had our patio installed and it was finally sealed two days ago. We purchased furniture over the weekend. We seriously considered splurging on what we thought we’d want long-term (this or this), but the thrifty side of us got the best of that decision. I just couldn’t invest in something expensive (and possibly long-term) without knowing how we’d use the space and with super young children who are certainly going to spill ketchup and fruit pops on any cushions we have.

We also felt like we wanted to start with more of a dining arrangement when the kids are younger. Maybe we’ll switch to lounge furniture later, but dining feels more practical right now.

In the process of deciding what we’d do, I found so many lookalike patio furniture items for way less money. I love the look of Pottery Barn, Serena & Lily, West Elm and more, but I couldn’t fathom spending $1000 on an outdoor dining table. Our indoor one didn’t cost that much. When I came across pieces that were very similar, I knew I had to share with you.  Ready to see some high and low priced lookalike items?

High and low priced patin furniture finds

High and low priced patin furniture finds

High and low priced patin furniture findsONE | TWO | THREE | FOUR | FIVE | SIX | SEVEN | EIGHT

All the finds on the left are the lower priced options. You will not believe some of the prices on the higher vs. lower. Read More »


Hey friends! We’re getting a simple stamped concrete patio this week! We’ve lived here more than four years and we’re really excited to have a small space to eat dinner outside this summer. We spend our weekends outside All DAY EVERY DAY.

Nautical patio inspiration. Navy blue striped and white patio plan

Table and bench | Navy striped director’s chairs | White and wood arm chairs | Navy striped umbrella | Table runners | White planters | Fire Table | White and wood lounge chairs | Outdoor throw pillows | Wicker side table | Cafe string lights (these ones are solar!)

We’d love to be able to entertain friends or have an impromptu dinner with neighbors without having to whip out a folding table from inside the garage and eat on the driveway. We currently keep our grill on a tiny sidewalk between the driveway and garage door. Not good! We also don’t currently have a door going directly to the patio, so we’ll be adding that at some point too. Baby steps though, right?

After spending the money on the actual patio (even though it’s tiny, it’s still not cheap), we won’t be furnishing the patio this well for a while, but I always like having a general plan so I can slowly work towards our goals.

With that said, maybe you are hoping to furnish your own patio this summer. The items from World Market are on sale in a big way and you can use coupon code WM20150 for an additional 20% off plus free shipping and no furniture surcharge today. The awesome cafe string lights are solar (which I just love) but are sold out online. You can still use the coupon and arrange for store pick-up. Read More »


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.#SnackPackNaturals #CollectiveBias

Easy summer pudding parfait bar We have a fun social neighborhood. When I buy snacks for my kids, I always buy enough for all of the neighbors too. It makes life so fun!

Easy summer pudding parfait bar

And I love finding easy ways to get neighbors together. Making snack time feel magical for our kiddos is something I really enjoy.

Easy summer pudding parfait bar

We spend a lot of time with our next door neighbors so having fun easy snacks for multiple kids on hand is such a great thing. Both of us provide for each other’s children and a few other nearby kiddos. It make Spring and Summer weekends so lovely!

Easy summer pudding parfait bar

Today I’m sharing my super easy porch pudding bar that you could whip together anytime for impromptu summer fun and invite the neighbors over. Read More »