Favorite Things: Back to School Sneakers

 

Shoe Carnival provided me with product and compensation. The opinions I have shared about the products are my own.

How great is back to school shopping? Growing up, I always loved our annual trek to track down everything on my school supply list and then finishing up by picking out a fresh new pair of sneakers.

The night before the first day of school, I’d pack up my backpack, lay out my outfit (the original flat lay) and of course, my new shoes. No matter how far in advance we went shopping, those shoes didn’t hit the pavement until the first day.

It’s been a long time since I’ve gone back to school shopping (let’s not talk about exactly how long) but I’m excited to get back in the game now that D3 is starting kindergarten.

We haven’t gone for the pencils and markers yet but we’ve already crossed off the most important item on his back to school wish list – new sneakers. We hit up Shoe Carnival last week to try on a million pairs before settling on our favorites. Yes, I picked out a pair too because… shoes.

I hadn’t been to Shoe Carnival in a while (don’t act like you don’t remember spinning the wheel) and was really impressed with the selection and even happier with the prices. Drew was able to get two pairs of shoes – these Nikes and a pair of Adidas – I grabbed a new pair of Nikes and Reese got some fresh pink Nikes all for $160. Yup, you read that right – four pairs for well under $200. I can’t say enough about the giant selection at Shoe Carnival. A lot of times when I go shopping for sneakers for the kids, it’s all light up pairs, super hero styles and knock off brands. That was definitely not the case there – so many options in colors that you and your kids will both like.

The ladies options were just as good. I would have probably left with a couple more pairs if Drew hadn’t been on my case about trying on so many shoes. We were both a little too excited to wait until the first day to break out our new shoes – sorry for partying. Reese, on the other hand, is being a little more patient about her new pairs – stay tuned for pics of her pretty in pink pair.

Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1063Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1069My Sneakers: Nike FS Lite Run 3 Print in Black/Peach/Blue |
On D3: Nike Dual Fusion in Orange 

Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1064Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1066 Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1072Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1077Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1076 Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1074 Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1075Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1073 Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1068Shoe Carnival Back to School Shoe Shopping_1062Photos by Sunni Wigginton

Yay It’s a Giveaway + Favorite Things: Newly Minted

Nothing like a good giveaway to liven up a Tuesday.

I’ve been a fan of Minted for a long time so I was jazzed to get a chance to work with them. Whenever a brand I already love and use contacts me, I get extra excited since it’s an the perfect opportunity to take my recommendations from gabbing with my girlfriends to sharing it with all of you. More importantly, I was pumped to have a chance to do a this giveaway with them.

I’ve spent way too many hours trying to narrow down my pick for our Christmas cards and don’t get me started on how long it took me to settle on a selection for a friend’s shower invitation. Seriously, full afternoons wasted debating between options.

But enough of my indecision …  this time next week I’ll be back in the office and that, my friends, is a huge bummer. Maternity leave hitting in conjunction with summer break is a huge bonus – I just wish I could extend it to Labor Day. Can I extend it to Labor Day?

Since I know that’s not in the cards, I’ve been trying to spend the last couple days knocking some to-do’s off my list to prepare for the insanity that our schedule becomes come Monday. Part of that is getting Blake ready for daycare but I’ve also been trying to get some of my back to school shopping done too. There’s all the big stuff – school supplies, uniforms, lunch boxes but then there’s always a bunch of random things you don’t think of off-hand. Like stickers. Did you ever think you’d be needed stickers for school?

Minted Kids Name Stickers (12)Minted Kids Name Stickers (5)Minted Kids Name Stickers (7)

Gold Pineapple Custom Name Labels | Doodle Frame Custom Name Labels | Frenchie Custom Name Labels  | Watercolor Flowers Custom Name Labels  | Vintage Race Car Custom Name Labels

Last year, after Drew ended up losing something new just about every week – I knew we need to start labeling all his stuff. Kind of annoying, yes. Totally necessary, definitely.

Oh and any new moms or pregnant friends (there’s a lot of you all out there right now – it’s baby fever all of a sudden), if you’ve got a little one heading to daycare, you’re probably going to need to label your kiddos bottles. Markers rub off so you’ll need to order washable stickers to do the trick. It also comes in handy if you forget a bottle at a friend’s house.

Minted Kids Name Stickers (11)

Doodle Frame Custom Name Labels | Gold Pineapple Custom Name Labels

The ones on Minted are by far the cutest around. I had already ordered these pretty little flower ones but then had to grab these little pineapple ones. I love these because they don’t come off in the dishwasher, fit their full names (my daycare requires the full first and last name on every bottle) and are just the sweetest.

For Drew, I have a mix. Bigger stickers for his lunch box, school supplies and bags but these tiny clothing label ones for all his uniforms. Rather than go with my pick, I let him scour the site with me to pick out his favorites. Last year it was race cars, this year sports.Whatever it takes to keep him from losing something else. You can see from the ones we bought last year that they stay on really well despite lots and lots of washings.

And since I couldn’t leave Reese out, I picked up these for my puppy obsessed little lady. I know once I show them to her she’ll be sticking them to every thing she owns. She’s started to take her books to school on the regular so I’ve been adding them whenever she decides to take one with her.

Minted Kids Name Stickers (8)Minted Kids Name Stickers (1)

Frenchie Custom Name Labels 

And last but not least, I’ve just got to to the office is send out Blake’s birth announcements. Yup, still haven’t done that. Aren’t they cute though? Hopefully they’ll be hitting the mail in the next couple days. Wish me luck.

Minted Kids Name Stickers (3)Minted Kids Name Stickers (4)

Simple Love Birth Announcements

I should have taken Minted up on their labeling service – next time I’ll realize I need the help and spring for the extra charge (it’s free right now though so if you’re in the need, it’s a good time to order).

Here’s the best part, Minted is going to be hooking one of you up with $150 to get ready for the school year. Or you can treat yourself and pick out something from their home or art selections. So much good stuff, I’m guessing the winner will be spending too much time narrowing down their favorites.

How to enter to win $150 Minted credit:

  • Enter here on Minted.com
    • Enter your name and email address (yup, that’s it)
  • Giveaway ends Tuesday June 26th at 1 pm.
  • The Fine Print:  This giveaway is only open to legal residents of the 50 United States and District of Columbia who are at least 18 years old as of the date of entry, except officers, directors, members, and employees of the Sponsor, the judging organization (if applicable), or any other party associated with the development or administration of this Promotion, and the immediate family (i.e., parents, children, siblings, spouse), and persons residing in the same household, as such individuals. This Promotion is void outside the 50 United States and the District of Columbia, and where prohibited.

 

Disclosure: This giveaway was sponsored by Minted.com. In addition, I was given a credit to Minted to pick out a handful of items featured in this post. Not all items featured in this post were included in that compensation. Some stuff I just bought because I loved it! All opinions, thoughts and random ramblings are my own.

Favorite Things: Girl’s Night In for Dress for Success

There are few things I enjoy more than a good girl’s night out but lately with busy schedules, a gaggle of kids and work commitments, it’s much harder to get everyone together. It’s hard enough with a group to set a date and even harder to get it to stick but when you throw in a good cause, it seems like everyone clears their schedule and makes time.

Drinks Set Up * Girls Night In Party Set Up (5)

When L’eggs contacted me about hosting a girl’s night to support Dress for Success, I knew it would be the perfect excuse to get together with friends while also cleaning out my closet for a cause. Little did I know how generous and supportive my friends would be too. Friends that couldn’t come sent emails to their co-workers and collected clothes to donate and my friends that did make it brought stacks of work wear and bags upon bags of accessories and work basics. I’m as excited as I was to host the party as I am to drop all these items off.

If you’re not familiar with Dress for Success, it’s an organization dedicated to empowering women to reach their career goals by providing them with professional attire along with the tools and support they need to achieve success. I think we all know how a great outfit can give you the added confidence you need to really nail an interview or crush a business meeting. And by donating gently work work wear or those suits you no longer need, you can provide that boost to a fellow woman.

To help get girl’s night going, L’eggs Hosiery generously sent over a fun party kit that made me look like the hostess with the mostess – something that certainly doesn’t come naturally. I think they helped me fool my friends though. Either the decorations or the margaritas, wine and of course, rose.

Drinks Set Up * Girls Night In Party Set Up (2)

Drinks Set Up * Girls Night In Party Set Up (3)

Drinks Set Up * Girls Night In Party Set Up (4)

Everyone brought their donations but I also asked everyone to bring a couple dresses for us to swap for summer weddings, showers and parties that way we all got to go home with something ‘new to us.’

There were drinks, lots of catching up and most importantly, tons and tons of clothes for me to drop off at Dress for Success. If you’re looking for a good way to get your girls together, I can’t recommend doing a night out for Dress for Success.

Just remember the items they are most in need of: pant and skirt suits, work blouses, professional shoes, jewelry and accessories, purses, umbrellas (who knew?), scrubs, high-quality casual clothes and new hosiery. I’m thinking of doing it again in the fall as part of a clothes swap (which is another great way to go home with goodies for yourself while also helping out a good cause – read about how to host one here).

dressforsuccess

Big thanks to L’eggs for sponsoring our girl’s night out and to my friends for bringing lots of great donations.

p.s. – My friends will probably kill me for this but just to prove that there were people there, here’s a pic. We were having too much fun for me to snap too many pics.

Drinks Set Up * Girls Night In Party Set Up (1)
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Favorite Things + Louisville: The Quickness with ClickList

You guys, consider my life changed.

Kroger Click List

Yes, I know that seems overly dramatic but it’s legit. If you’ve read here before, you know I am sucker for anything that makes my life a little easier and more importantly, saves time. Today I tried out Kroger’s ClickList service and it was a game changer for real.

Okay so when it comes to grocery shopping, it used to be my jam. I’d get lost in strolling up and down the aisles, finding some sort of odd relaxation in taking my time filling up my cart. But that was before I had enough people in my family to fill the starting line-up of a basketball team. It was also before I was frantically running from work to pick-ups to any other sort of engagement that I am inevitably late for. Now I usually find myself trying to get in and out of the grocery store before D3 can add all the candy, chips and other assorted goodies he can get his hands on. Even when I get the chance to go alone, I’m usually rushing through. Gone are the days of wandering the aisles like an old lady on Senior Discount Day. Side note: Did you know they used to have a lady playing piano in the store on Senior Discount Days? That was a previous maternity leave discovery.

So a couple months ago when I saw in the news that ClickList was coming to Louisville, I started counting down the days until my grocery pick-up dreams became a reality. Yes, I know that language seems over the top but it’s no joke. Ask the girls I work with, it was something we were all seriously amped about.

The first time I tried it out was a couple weeks ago when I was up to my ears in working on Muhammad Ali’s funeral but knew I couldn’t leave my family behind with a refrigerator full of sadness. But I only went through the ordering process that time, leaving Drew to give the pick-up process a try. He said it was easy and so amazing but I didn’t realize how great it was until going through the entire process.

Kroger ClickList

So here’s how it works:

1. Order:  You go online to Kroger.com and head over to the ClickList section. Once there you just type in what you’re looking for and the search pulls up just about everything in that category. This makes it easy to pick the best priced item or match it up with a digital coupon.I think the online ordering process is easiest when you make a list in advance. I did add some random stuff based off coupons and reminders on what I’ve bought in the past but it’s faster if you’ve got a list ready to work from. I’ll say this was by far the most time consuming part but even then, it probably only took me about 15 or 20 minutes and I may or may not have been in my pajamas.

When you’ve completed all your shopping, you check out online (right now you can’t pay online but they are adding it soon) and select when you want to pick up your groceries. You have to order one day in advance and you select a one-hour window of when you can swing by.

2. Pull Up  & Call:  Now here’s the good part. I picked up my groceries on a Sunday morning which is when I’d normally make it in the store along with half of Louisville. This means the store is super crowded, you bump into at least one or two people you know and process of unloading my cart gives D3 enough time to find at least four more things to add to our order. Basically, it’s an ordeal.

Instead it was, quite possible, the easiest errand ever. No joke, the entire process took less than 15 minutes. You pull into the special ClickList parking spots, call the number on the sign, tell them your name and they bring everything out to you. Yes, you read that right – they bring all your groceries to your car. You don’t even have to get out. This is a huge deal when you’ve got kids that you don’t want to unload (that can take me 15 minutes in and of itself) or if you’re shopping after work and want to make it home in time to make dinner and watch all your favorite shows.

3. Pay & Load Up: When I pulled up, the two nicest associates – Andrea and Bethany – rolled out all my groceries, loaded them in my car (!!!) and even brought me a bottle of water. I pulled into the parking lot at 11 am and was pulling out at 11:13. I even made the mistake of parking in a regular spot and had to walk back to my car and pull into the ClickList lane which definitely added at least five minutes to the process. I’ve never been so happy leaving the grocery store. I was home and had all my groceries unloaded by 11:45 – a modern miracle. Saving all that time meant that I was poolside by 12:30. Insert hands in the air emoji.

My entire outlook on grocery shopping has changed. No longer am I procrastinating and waiting until our pantry is bare before heading out to the store. Consider me obsessed.

I will say that this doesn’t mean my days of wandering aimlessly through the aisles are over. I’m sure I’ll use it as an excuse to get out of the house solo. I also love wandering through and seeing what new stuff is available but this whole drive-thru grocery shopping experience is my new jam.

Louisville friends – ClickList is now available at the Hubbards Lane Kroger as well as the Breckinridge Lane, Outer Loop and Southgate locations with more to come.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kroger but I had already tried out and fallen in love with ClickList before writing this. As always, all opinions, ramblings and comments are my own.

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