at home with lillypost

can i tell you about one of my favorite gifts ever?! it’s lillypost! of course, if you’ve been around for awhile you’ve heard me mention this numerous of times. if you’re new, here’s the deets::

  1. its a monthly subscription box available in 1,3,6, or 12 months
  2. subscriptions start at $26 a box
  3. you get to pick your style; board book box, picture book, or mixed
  4. boxes ship out on the 20th of each month
  5. lillypost will donate 1 new book to a children’s literacy charity for every box purchased

this month we chose to do a mixed box. i just cannot really get over the fact that finley probably is getting to the age where he doesn’t need board books, but lets be honest…hayden still loves these ones and he’s four. for us, its fun to do the mixed books because the board books they look at on their own + the picture books are left for reading before bed. or before nap time. or when they wake up for the day. WE’RE ALWAYS READING!

my coupon code is still good for all first time box purchasers. use ‘beingbadenhop’ or 10% off any 1,3,6, or 12 month subscription!

ps- this is like the perfect christmas gift. hint hint. you’re welcome. xx

tote well x madewell


for the past, i don’t know, four-ish years i have been toting around a diaper bag. lucky for me, there have been so many beautiful diaper bags made available for moms today. from back packs, to wipeable leathers, to not your average diaper bag, we have been blessed with some of the best. but recently, i found myself shying away from the good ‘ol DB. maybe its that finley is officially ‘not a baby’ anymore, or maybe it’s the fact that i know I have five months left before all the baby things pile back up. but obviously, i am pregnant so i also wanted to be sure to find something that could be used for mama and for bebe.

insert my madewell tote. it’s basic. it’s timeless. it’s cognac [my fav]. and it’s so so big [but not too big].  but like, insert a tote organizer later big for all the baby things. and it’s absolutely beautiful. just gorgeous!

so what’s inside my bag currently? well let’s take a peek!

glasses // these little guys are always with me. if you see me in the wild without them and wave me down, i’ll probs stare at you like a crazy person. hashtag can’t see. these ones are from warby parker and they are kind of my favorite.

wallet // because…gotta get that money honey.  obviously i carry this with me haha. but my poor, beautiful madewell wallet [that matches my tote perfectly!] has seen better days. all those sippy cups i used to carry around did some damage. there’s probably a way to fix this. right?! RIGHT???

lippies // at any given point there are always at least three tubes in my bag. colors + glosses. always always. and my lipsticks, well they don’t come off. more on that later!

diapers + wipes // yes, these are a select few of the baby items that still take home in my bag. we love seventh generation for our diapers + wipes. they’re free + clear and effective. although finley is using the potty every day, he isn’t ‘officially’ trained yet. but that’s okay. i do love me a diaper butt. but maybe just one diaper butt, so that means he has several months left to get it together. HA.

changing mat // i absolutely love carrying along a changing mat with me for those times when diaper changes are necessary. this one from gathre is made of leather, so it’s wipeable and easy to keep clean. the bonus? it doubles up as a placemat for us, too!

essential oils // in my bag, i always try to remember to carry a few of those every day EOs that i use most. for us, that is on guard for our hand sanitizer and germ kicker, my xanax blend to chill the heck out sometimes, past tense for those pregnancy migraines that like to sneak up on me, and lemon for our water. i think most of these have found their way into my car, but the xanax doesn’t leave me.

bonnet // finley loves hats. he asks to wear them all the time. and he will be wearing a bonnet as long as i can get away with it! with the cool mornings we have been having, and the sunny afternoons that come around, i have been making sure to keep a brimmed bonnet in my bag. we love this one from briar.

baby carrier // i never, ever, leave my house without a sling. my little lifesavers!  i always make sure i have one for those times when finley is napping or when we’re out running errands and he doesn’t want to walk anymore. we absolutely could not live without our wildbird slings.

tiny cotton bag// this little guy is actually what my wallet came in. and it is so cute! i love it because it is small enough to throw into my bag and it keeps a few items all together. in here is where i like to keep a few snacks [aka suckers] my lippies, essential oils, and hair ties.

so that’s it. the bag + the things i literally carry daily and everywhere. what’s in your bag? and where do you take it?

this post was created in partnership with madewell. however, all opinions and feelings are my own. 

our little nugget, endless possibilities


a few weeks ago, we decided to get rid of our beloved teepee. this was fine with everyone, of course until it was not. the morning that we were sending it off, hayden was really upset. he didn’t want it to go to a new home, but i tried to explain to him that since we were not using it, someone else could give it more love. and maybe, possibly they needed it more.

later that evening, there was a special package waiting outside our door. and goodness it came at the most perfect time. inside, was like the best thing that has ever happened to these boys’ life. it was their new nugget.

the nugget is a couch with four pieces, for endless possibilities. the couch is made up of open-cell foam. the two main pieces fold up so nicely [and actually have a strap to be carried], making it extremely easy to move, yet a fully functional piece of furniture. the coolest part? the couch actually comes shipped in that little box!

so since we opened it up, the monkeys were set free. holy smokes i have never seen my kids play with one thing for so long. it’s their personal jungle gym, their reading nook, and their bed. and they just absolutely love it to death. so many happy hours spent on their nugget.

high five, nugget fam!


this post was created in partnership with nugget. however, all opinions + feelings  are my own. 

natural wool slippers

ya’ll, i cannot even with this weather currently. yesterday was eighty-five degrees. EIGHTY-FIVE. and it immediately had me wishing for more spring weather. well enter today. it has been grey + stormy one minute and bright + sunny the next. repeat. for the last five hours. but, i have two boys napping and i am just over here cinderellin’ away. sort of. mostly admiring these sweet slippers and staging my house. HA. i mean, if it makes ya happy…

so anyways, let’s talk about those slippers shall we. they are by the lovely haflinger. haflinger, located in goslar, is a company who’s mission is to create products in total unison with nature. and they do exactly that. our slippers are made with 100% wool, so your foot is surrounded by 100% natural material, always. the thing i absolutely love, is that wool is able to store it’s own humidity and because of that, your feet will stay warm in the winter or cool in the summer, making these slippers perfect for any time of the year. and also, making them incredibly comfortable. and i personally love how the styles of these are classic. but mainly, i just cannot get over those little tiny ones to the left of mine. SO SWEET

okay, back to cleaning i go [ or something like that ;)]


badenhop best [winter]

we have some new favorites in the badenhop house + they have all been a big part of our lives throughout the last three months. the snow has melted [for now] and baby buds are starting to show up on our plants + trees outside of our home. temperatures are slowly rising, but not much. no matter what though, it is officially spring. we’re excited for the adventures that await us, but first let’s recap all the items that brought us joy during the winter months.

our nexo stroller

in case you missed it, i blogged about our beautiful navy stroller with cognac leather handles by mutsy, here.  but since then, this guy has been a big part of all of our adventures. of course, little nexo is still riding like a dream and just the coziest stroller yet. we added the footmuff to our stroller for the winter, and i think hayden and i were slightly jealous of finley’s warm snuggle cocoon. he was so cozy [and sometimes sweating while we were shivering]! the footmuff; making all our winter wanderings happen. and the nexo, making life so incredibly  cute. love this beaut!

natural deodorant 


i think i have seriously been on the hunt for a well working, long lasting natural deodorant for at least the past two years. it was just recently that i came across a recommendation for this one. the blackberry vanilla has to be my ultimate favorite. it. smells. delish. [insert nose emoji and one million heart eyes] it goes on so soft, and lasts even longer. i think i found the one, y’all!

lillypost box

i also blogged about this subscription box, here. but let’s recap! onto our second month of boxes  for the boys and still so much to brag about, so let’s recap. lillypost is a monthly subscription box full of books for your littles.  the books themselves come individually wrapped in the most beautiful paper, making it such a fun treat for the kiddos to open. lillypost offers subscriptions in 1, 3, 6, or 12 months. you can choose from a board book box [perfect for ages 0-2] or a picture book box [great for ages 3+].  you can see both boxes here! the packages ship out on the 20th of each month and start at just $26. you can use code ‘beingbadenhop’ for 10% off your 3, 6, or 12 month subscription [must be a first time order].

merci milo shop

i first came across this beautiful curated shop, ran by the sweetest mama, back in december when i was planning our christmas giveaway. founded in 2015 and inspired by her daughter, Milo, Caroline is always updating the shop and literally stocks it with the most beautiful handmade + unique toys, from local artisans to global brands. she knows how to keep them coming back 😉 i mean, i drool over everything. seriously, such beautiful toys that make me so happy to fill our home with.

mikoleon boots

oh our mikoleon boots. these boots are handcrafted in guatemala and made with artisan leather. simply put, the quality is beyond amazing. they’re beautiful and will definitely be an heirloom to our family. the boys have literally been wearing these everyday since they arrived. and every single time they wear their boots out in public, the compliments start flooding in.  i don’t blame them one bit, because i am obsessed with these ones! you can see the love, miles, and adventures the boots have carried so far, and yet this still makes them so incredibly gorgeous. and yet, even maybe more so special.

babywearing through the years

when hayden was first born, i remember seeing wraps + carriers in the stores, but honestly, i didn’t know much about them or babywearing. i bought a wrap for his first month of life, and wore him closely as we walked endless loops around our county fair. in fact, i remember buying it for this very moment and to keep him close to me and away from other people’s hands. sadly, i don’t think i wore him much after that week. fast forward to when he was a bit older, i bought our first carrier. and i think he sat in that thing, maybe three times. babywearing was seldom talked about around here, i was one of the first out of my friends to start a family, and i rarely ever saw babywearing happening. i wish i had. did you know there are so many amazing + different benefits for baby and for you by wearing baby close?  i wish i had.

finley was about eight months old when i first joined the amazing community of mothers on instagram. i immediately was drawn to these beautiful carriers i kept seeing around. they were not like anything available in the stores and they also just so happened to be made by mothers themselves. i instantly fell in love with the idea of helping a mom be able to provide for her family. i did my research and i started to learn all of those many benefits of babywearing.  i wanted to always keep my baby close  + to experience this world together. i longed to have my hands free to be able to chase my toddler through the desert, sit down to play with him while the baby was fussy, or to make a delicious meal for our family when someone would rather be held.

finley is now 22 months, and i am wearing him more than ever before. it’s become a way of life and it makes us both so happy. i can sense his feeling of comfort when he’s worn. he can nap, while we continue moving along. and we can snuggle when he’s feeling sad or just when he wants some extra mama time. there’s a sense of calm in both of us when he is wrapped up closely to me. and now that we are well into a year and a half of wearing, i wanted to share with you several different + favorite ways that we carry in + out of our home. i treasure these products. they have been a Godsend in this season of motherhood and my only hope is for another mama to take that leap and give babywearing a try, too.

the solly baby wrap. 

remember that first wrap i told you about, well it  almost terrified me out of this one. but I was instantly drawn in by this beautiful pattern, a collaboration with amanda jane jones. and once i started reading about solly + elle [the lovely mama behind it all], i just knew this one would be different. that it would be amazing and so well loved. it’s not hard + bulky to get on and the fabric is out of this world. it’s made of lenzing modal, which is a lightweight, buttery soft fabric. everything is made right here in the us and environmental friendly dyes are always used when dying the fabric. the wrap itself is made to be used from the moment your babe arrives, up until 25 pounds. i personally love this wrap for the early, tiny newborn moments, but then again finley actually took a ride in it just last week.

wildbird sling.

if you’ve been following along with me for some time, then you have heard me mention wildbird before. okay, maybe a few times. and it probably will not be the last time [you’ve been warned]. wildbird is ran by the incredible + sweetest tayler. this was actually my first carrier [sling] that i ordered for finley + i.  everything about wildbird is absolutely beautiful and i think that is why i was first drawn to them. their branding + marketing + product are easily put, simply amazing. the slings are available in three different fabrics and in either a single or a double layer [for those heavier babes + longer carries]. the slings are made in salt lake city, utah and can be worn from birth [eight pounds] up until 35 pounds. i have admitted before that i have quite the ‘stash’ happening over here and i am so not ashamed.  from left to right: our first bird, sparrow; a single layer linen, warbler; a single layer bamboo, and indigo finch; a double layer chambray. go ahead, collect them all. i dare you!

happy baby carriers.

meet the newest carrier that i have just recently come across. i haven’t really been able to talk cory into wearing the wrap or sling [although I’d die if he did. insert heart eyes], so i have always been on the hunt for something that he would like to use as well. i cannot even remember when it happened, but i found it. happy baby carriers are made from my all time favorite fabric, linen. linen is lightweight + breathable and always so beautiful. these carriers are also made right here in the us. they also feature a hidden pocket with a sun cover for baby + extra storage room for you. happy baby carriers support newborns up until 45 pounds. 45 pounds guys! that’s carrying my almost four year old when his little legs can no longer keep up.


classroom valentines + minted

okay, so we talked about my excitement over valentine’s day, but honestly, i might be most excited for this. this year will be hayden’s first valentine’s day party at school! the day will be filled with books of love, lots of treats, games, and handing out little valentines to all of his friends. i mean, can you even handle a bunch of three year olds passing out valentines to each other?! because i can’t! TOO CUTE [insert heart eyes +sob face here].

we were so happy to work with minted this holiday of love [who knew they had the sweetest classroom valentines cards!], and i think hayden was even happier that he found the perfect valentine for his friends at school; dinosaurs. RAWR.

so every time i ask hayden what his friends’ names are at school he says, “i don’t know”. i chuckle because, honestly he gives me that answer for everything i ask him about school. boys. anyways, you could say we had extra fun addressing the cards for each friend this year as we stared at his classroom photo. and hopefully he learned their names [ha].  after the name game, he carefully picked out the dinosaurs he wanted to give each friend, and i tied them up as we attached them to their special cards. finley did a lot of grabbing and playing as he tried to help, too.

he is so excited for his party and to hand out his treats. and i am so excited for him! i guess this probably means i should start making his valentine’s day box! any guesses what he will want it to be?

there is still time to order you classroom cards! to get your order by monday, februray 13th, rush order by today. and if you are lucky like us with a later party date, you still have a few days to get those cards in!

classroom cards shown are ‘dino-mite’ 

this post was created in sponsorship with minted. however, all opinions and feelings are my own. 

valentine’s day gift guide with minted

february; love month. hearts are everywhere. love is in the air. and valentine’s day is just around the corner. i have kind of always been a valentine’s day kinda girl. the thought behind having that one extra day dedicated  to showing the special people in your life just how much you love them always resonated with me.  added chocolates and  extra flowers don’t make for a bad holiday either.

i remember two years ago, cory woke up and left us heart shaped cinnamon rolls to wake up to. and last year, i attempted to make the boys heart shaped homemade pop tarts [key word attempted]. this year, i am thinking donuts, followed by heart shaped pizzas and all the chocolates we can eat.


i thought it would be extra fun to send out valentine’s day cards out to our loved ones this year. and i am so happy that we had the opportunity to work with minted on them. at minted you can find so many beautiful card designs and other unique gifts, all created by a community of independent designers. we browsed their site for hours and rounded out a few of our absolute favorites to give you a valentine’s day gift guide for the special people in your life.


xo side note 

this year we are doing things a bit different and mailing out valentine’s day cards to our family. i don’t know about you, but there is nothing better than receiving something in the mail as a total surprise. good ol’ snail mail, guys. we hope these cards put a smile on their face and extra love in their heart. and any reason to use this adorable photo is more than okay in my book.

gifts //

heart collage 

i absolutely love this one. you simply choose thirty of your most favorite photos/memories and a collage in the shape of a heart will be made for you. now isn’t that love?!

wedding vows

here’s a little special gift for your number one, your partner, you other half. turn your wedding vows into beautiful art with this gift. the words will be beautifully foil pressed in the font you desire.

serif date

i love the simplicity behind this one. it is completely customizable down to the color background and frame. personalize it for that special someone with a meaningful date. for me, that’s the date it all started.  9.2.11; my wedding date.

watercolor heart

this one is just so pretty! a simple watercolored heart over your favorite photo.

customized map

simply type in a meaningful address and minted will automatically upload a map to preview of that exact location. i love this idea for where those special memories happened. and look how sweet the name of the address looks. and of course, the added touch of the foil. this too, is also customizable; color + frame.

of course i could have gone on and on. minted offers such a vast variety of handpicked gifts. from cards, to special gifts created just for mom or dad, to stationary, to customized art, surely you can find the perfect gift for that special someone. to see all the valentine’s day gifts minted has to offer, click here. and hurry hurry, there is still a little bit of time to pick out your perfect valentine’s day gift.

this post was created in sponsorship with minted. however, all views and opinions are my own. 

meet ‘bossy bray’

in case you we wondering we’ve gone off and gotten ourselves a maid. and yes, she has a name, and yes,  that name is bossy bray [courtesy of little hayden lane, himself]. seriously, where do they come up with some of these things?

so let me introduce you to bossy bray, our new bObi pet. bObsweep is a robotic vacuum cleaner, that can vacuum, sweep, and mop all at once. bObsweep is also  RoHS [restriction of hazardous substances] certified to ensure maximum customer safety and minimum environmental impact.  bObi pet, is all of those things you love about the classic, but with even more capabilities. she has increased vacuum power; to suck down deep and collect all of that hair, a longer battery life; to go farther and get more work done, and a great warranty; to always keep your floors nice and clean.

we instantly charged the boss girl as soon as she arrived to her new home. after a quick look through her manual, she was ready to go. seriously, bObi is really simple to use. simply turn her on and away she goes. the greatest thing, she wanders back to her ‘charging home’ as soon as she begins to feel weak. and i mean, you heard my say she mops right?! she mops!  bObi also comes with a remote control so you can program her to do specific cleanings on specific days at specific times.


hayden likes to be in charge of her. finny gives her kisses. rylee + mo chase her as she does her work. and me? well i have never been happier. before, i was finding myself pulling out our vacuum and broom every. single. day. sometimes multiple times a day. those fiber rugs sure are pretty, but my goodness, THE BIGGEST MESS.  not to mention the added toddlers. but not anymore! boss girl leaves our floors looking shiny and so, so clean. we can eat off the floor! [which the boys’ have already deemed doable].

even finley is hanging up his broom.


this post was created in partnership with bObsweep for review purposes. all opinions and feelings are my own.

a lipstick for mama

i know by now you have probably heard all the rave, but when julie asked me to try this new product i was like, ABSOFREAKINLUTELY. and ladies, they have done it. they have created a smudge proof, kiss proof, eat your cheeseburger without getting a bottom lip proof lipstick. the brand? lip sense.

i mean, just look at how good it stays on! heart eyes. heart eyes. heart eyes.

to learn more, please head over to julie’s page, ‘lip stick with julie‘.


on lips: nude + with a clear gloss – on hands: nude + mulled wine

badenhop best 2016

you guys. i have slacked. a few months ago, i introduced a new series to you all; badenhop best. after two runs, i completely was overwhelmed by doing all the fall activities. and then came thanksgiving. and quickly after, christmas. i totally dropped the ball. this year, i have high hopes of really balancing this whole blog/mama/wife life out. i hope to continue this series, because i really love to share what we are loving at home and in our lives with you all.

so for the first installment of badenhop best, i give you the best of 2016.



  1. gathre mat: we started the year off with one and quickly found ourselves with two; a midi and a maxi. each mat is made of beautiful leather and are completely versatile. we use ours inside for crafts or under the boys’ seats at the dinner table, or outside for picnics, play dates, and more.
  2. seventh generation products: this year we have been introduced to seventh generation, focusing on their free and clear line; no dyes + no fragrances. from diapers to shampoos, and laundry detergent to all purpose cleaner, our house has been completely stocked with seventh generation products. we just love them.
  3. tubby todd: another introduction to us this year and one that will stick with us for years to come. each tubby todd product is made with 100% natural ingredients that are simple and safe. bonus: they added a mama’s line! we absolutely LOVE their dream cream + all over ointment, and i have been spraying myself daily with the freshening spray.
  4. natursutten pacifiers: i am giving all the praise hands to these little guys, the soothers of my baby fin. we have spent the entire year using these. the reason why we love them? they are 100% natural. no artificial colors, no chemicals, no parabens, making them safe for baby.
  5. hazel village animals: the boys absolutely love their animals, and although we have so many other dolls + toys that we could easily choose too, these ones have been a part of our year the longest. the animals are individually handcrafted in nyc with organic cotton fleece, and wrapped up beautifully in a cotton bag with a satchel full of lavender inside.  and now, you can even get matching outfits for your kids! truly an heirloom for our family.


  1. cleansing grains: my face has been a total whirlwind this year. i blame motherhood, but honestly, it’s the worst it has been my entire life and i often find myself hiding behind things. i just recently came across urban oreganics; which is handcrafted in small batches using 100% natural ingredients. everything is organic + vegan. i am loving the detox  cleansing grains. use code ‘lindsey20’ for 20% off your purchase. 
  2. personalized jewelry: i have been a fan of personalized jewelry since the boys were both teeny tiny babes. my first piece was a tiny gold ring that spelled out ‘hayden’. i have since lost it, but it was always my absolute favorite. this year i have grown my collection by adding several meaningful pieces. check out bstampedbritt + james michelle + the shine project.
  3. wildbird sling:  this was my saving grace this past year. wherever i went, our wildbird sling went as well. i am bit embarrassed to share with your our “stash”, but let’s just say we now are the proud of owners of four. i know, this is not simplifying, buttttt…. one for home, car, diaper bag [insert tongue sticking out face here], you get it. they are just all so beautiful! the slings are offered in single  or double layer and are available  in linen, chambray, and bamboo.
  4. gigi pip hats: 2016 brought on the year of raising to wild boys, and the year of less hair washes. i have always had a love for hats, but this year, that love grew emensly. i love supporting mama shops, and this one is run by the sweetest. from beanies, to any style fedora, to baseball caps, gigi pip has you covered. literally. use code ‘badenhop’ for 20% off your purchase. 
  5. my diaper bags: oh the diaper bag. it is with us everywhere we go, so why not have a functional, yet cute bag. this year i carried a brand i first found when finley was born, along with coming across a new brand. both have been by my side throughout the past year. they are, fawn design; a versatile backpack, that can also be turned into a cross body and the gail satchel by newlie; a bag that by the looks of it you would never guess to be a diaper bag. both beautiful. both fully functional.




  1. chemex: i received this little guy for my birthday last year and i am currently wondering how i ever lived without him. i am sure he has been filling your feeds lately, but honestly, he’s more than just ‘for looks’. the flavor that is produced by using this pour-over coffee maker is out of this world. so good.
  2. olly vitamins: the boys are completely obsessed with taking vitamins, and who would i be to not think that is a good thing? we recently came across olly several months ago and it’s been love ever since. olly vitamins are available in children’s, women’s, and men’s.
  3. letterfolk board: a huge staple in our home this past year. it has been so fun changing them up and creating new sayings.
  4. stendig calendar: a huge calendar, that also works as decor. it is perfect. now to order one for 2017, because, mama needs to hide those giant holes from last year. and it just makes me so happy! [not seen here, because well, it’s long gone now. see a photo of it in our home here]
  5. diffusing + essential oils: diffusing is so important in our home. i think we now have a diffuser in every room, and now it all rides on if i remember to fill them in the morning/night. i’ve come across many diffusers throughout the past few years, but these are some of my favorites: the stadler by jasmine, doterra cloud [which i think is gone. insert sad face], and this wood one i found on amazon. you can shop our doterra oils here.




  1. mama bird tee: i just needed to add this here, because i honestly think i wore it weekly. and maybe sometimes multiple times a week. i also really love the bee & the fox’s ‘love your mother‘ and ‘mama tried‘ tees as well.
  2. knit overalls: we have only had these for the last month of the year, but man, they are love. actually, anything fin&vince is love.
  3. bonnets: i might cry the day finley can no longer wear a bonnet, but until then we are going bonnet crazy in here. a few of our favorites are from little pine outfitters, rylee & cru, and briar.
  4. rompers: i think one of my favorite style of clothing that the boys wear, is rompers. i love how easy they are to get on and off. but also, they are just always the sweetest pieces. check out these favorite small shops of ours for some romper love; fin & vince, little cotton wood, kid + kind, and rylee & cru. of course zara always has some great rompers as well, like this one.
  5. clogs: i remember wearing clogs back when i was a kid, but this year i decided to give them a try again. i mean seriously, thee comfiest/stylish shoe to chase your kids around in. i fell i love with these ones by lotta from stockholm.

a package of books

reading plays a big role in our house. every morning, the first thing the boys do is grab a book right away. the  morning hours are spent wandering through forests, saying good bye to the moon, or counting along with mickey. then afternoon quiet time roops around and once again, we find ourselves getting lost in books. and of course there’s the nightly bedtime routine, bedtime stories. we love that the boys are so into books. not only is it helping them fundamentally, but i pray that it helps them continue that love for reading far into their older years.

the other day, the boys each had a package from lillypost waiting for them on our doorstep. and i wish i could bottle up their expressions on those tiny faces to remember every perfect detail in that moment for the rest of my life. finley sat so patiently on the bed gazing at his and hayden hugged his package so tight. and the sounds. those squeals of pure excitements and the “oh my gosh!” es. that’s the good stuff, guys.


lillypost is a monthly subscription book service providing books for littles, which is perfect for us because we are always looking for new favorites. i mean, mama can only read the same book so many times in a row!

the board book box is perfect for finley [ages 0-2] and the picture book box is just right for hayden [ages 3+].  each box is filled with beautifully wrapped books, making it the perfect happy mail for children. unpackaging is half the fun! subscriptions are offered in 1, 3, 6, and 12 months and start at just $26. lilypost will then also donate one new book for every single box shipped to a charity focused on advancing children’s literacy, such as project night night and the children’s book bank.

and i am so excited to tell you that lily post is so graciously offering you all ten percent off your first 3, 6, or 12 month subscription. just use code ‘beingbadenhop’ at check out!

this post was shared in partnership with lillypost, however all views and opinions are my own.

a toy gift guide for toddlers

christmas is just ten [update. now SIX] days away. can you believe it? we are in the christmas spirit full force over here. there’s hallmark movies playing on the tv, christmas records playing throughout the house, and a christmasy craft to be made every day. there’s also lots of hot cocoa, naturally.

this year we vowed to  follow [read tried] the minimalistic guide to gifting. i am sure you know the one: something they need, something they want, something to read, and something to wear. after actually researching a few different versions of this gift guide, we also decided to include something to do. i like ththe idea of gifting the, something they will always remember and can look back on and appreciate the time we spent, together. so far, i would say we haven’t stemmed too far off that list. surprising, i know. but with this lift, comes careful concentration+planning, and lets be real, toys [they are little only once, ya know].  i have done my best to find toys that will last a lifetime, that have meaning, and that are easily put, beautiful. not the toys that are played with for two seconds and tossed away. this has given us all the more reason to decide to do a minimalistic christmas this year.

so, i have pulled together a few of my favorite brands and toy shops to give you a list of great holiday toys for the little toddlers in your life.

  1. cuddle+kind dolls: you know just exactly how big of a fan we are of our cuddle and kind doll, maximus, especially if you read here. finley carries him everywhere he goes and max never leaves his side when he sleeps. at cuddle+kind, every doll is handcrafted with natural, high quality cotton by women artisans in peru, providing them with a sustainable, fair trade income. and for every doll purchased, cuddle+kind will donate ten meals to a child in need. so not only are you getting a beautiful doll for a loved one, but you are helping make a difference.
  2. little sapling toys:  last year for christmas, we gifted finley these personalized name blocks, and have been big fans of this brand ever since. each toy is handcrafted from sustainably harvested wood and is finished with beeswax and organic jojoba oil, making them safe for your little one’s mouth.  the toys themselves are simple, beautiful, and made to last. and the best part, they plant a tree for every toy sold! this year, we got this fun lacing toy for hayden.
  3. the storybook: you might remember when i talked about joining the storybox here, but the boys loved getting their package so much, that i thought this was perfect for the gift “to read”, as each box comes with one board book [for finley] and one picture book [for hayden].
  4. merci milo shop: i just recently came across this shop, but goodness am i happy i did so. merci milo is a toy shop, that focuses on showcasing unique and beautifully handcrafted toys from local artisans, traditional toy makers, creative mamas, and global brands. if you ask me, it’s like santa’s workshop, something for every little one on your list. we’ve had our eye on this unique robot monkey, made from wood and rope, for quite some time, and i know the boys will just love him.
  5. wooden story: another wooden toy shop, does that surprise you? this one is located in the mountains in Peru, and they too focus on all natural toys that have been inspired by nature. my favorite part, their packaging [which is beautiful by the way] is not made to be thrown away. the canvas bags and boxes are designed to be reused or recycled. we really love this natural pyramid and this rainbow stacking toy [toys not shown].

and lucky for you, we have all come together to create a happy surprise for one little tot this christmas. to learn more, head on over to my instagram account.


machine washable rugs to make you happy

three words. machine washable rugs. did you even know these existed?! it’s like the answers to all mom’s cleaning prayers. we can have white rugs now, guys! white!

we recently received this beautiful lorena canals rug and are just smitten over it.  the rugs themselves are all handmade individually and are completely eco-friendly, and made of 100% cotton. no yucky, toxic dyes here.  you all know how happy that makes me! and besides our rug being oh so comfy to play and lounge on [i mean seriously, it is the softest thing ever], i love the fact that i can give it a good cleaning every now and then by tossing it into our washer. and we all know how great that is when there are kids involved. and diapers. and markers. and snacks. and well, kids.

  • these milestone cards are seriously great. hayden’s reads about how he was learning what cory and i’s names were, but instead he insisted on calling us ‘daddyhop’ and ‘mommyhop’. he thought it was absolutely hysterical!


wood teething rattle by finn+ emma; tribal stripe pajamas by finn + emma; toddler first word and quotes cards by milestone;

rug in bereber beige 

giving ten meals to children in need

if you have yet to hear of cuddle+kind you have to, have to, have to check them out! cuddle+kind was created by a husband/wife team, also parents, who were inspired to help feed the millions of children that are impacted my childhood hunger.

cuddle+kind produces ethically made, hand knit dolls. each doll is made in peru with the highest quality, all natural cotton. for every doll purchased, ten meals will be provided to children in need. with a goal of one million meals, this year they have given 449,453 meals!  although hayden is young, and it’s hard for him to understand, he smiled so big when i told him about the children he helped feed.  together we are making a difference for these children. it’s just such a beautiful mission and i absolutely love that about them. and the dolls? well they are equally as beautiful.

maximus the cat

crispy fall strolls with mutsy

chunky knits on babies. fallen leaves. grey skies. socks + birds. these things making it so hard to say goodbye to fall. i know it will be any day now that as we pile into the car and drive the scenic route to hayden’s school, following the river ever so closely, that bare trees will be among us, that the buttery yellow, darkest green and ruby red with trails of orange leaves will be gone. winter will be waiting to greet us. so, to make things a bit easier, we have been getting out as much as possible, enjoying all of autumn’s beauty.

hayden was able to practice riding his bike along side me [actually after about fifteen minutes he said, “i tired now.” and i so luckily got to carry the bike as he pushed his brother], as i pushed finley in his new stroller.  when i laid my eyes on it, my mouth hit the floor. it’s gorgeous. and that cognac leather is what my dreams are made of. apparently it’s what finley’s dreams are made of too because he spent the entire weekend in the stroller. in the house. goofing around and taking rides. it’s a compact, light weight  push chair, suitable for newborns up to fifty-five pounds. it’s  practical, compatible to a maxi cosi car seat, fully reclines and actually can resemble a pram when doing so, and rides like a dream with the swiveling front wheels. the push chair can be set to an ideal height, making it the perfect fit for anyone who is pushing. and it quickly folds all right up making it super easy to store. and, she’s pretty. like really, really pretty.

our very beautiful stroller is the nexo by mutsy

a massage mat for mama

let’s be real here. my self care is shot. lately, i feel like i am dragging and honestly, i can barely get out of bed in the morning. physically i mean, but maybe partially mentally too [soooo tireddd]. i have those mama back pains and my stress level is sky rocketing. like its bye bye, up there, gone. so, i about squealed [okay i did squeal] so loud when i came across pranamat eco.

pranamat is a therapeutic manual massage mat that helps to relieve minor muscle aches and pains + tension. it also helps to promote feelings of well being and relaxation, along with improving sleep. pranamat is made from high quality, eco-friendly, hypoallergenic materials; including coconut, linen, and cotton. and that makes my heart happy. like, so, so happy.

the mat itself is super easy to use and a session takes as little as 15 minutes. although, i enjoy it so much, i tend to do longer sessions. like i just lay there. forever.  it’s been doing wonders on my lower back pain and i instantly feel the stress melt away from my shoulders. as for the way it feels, well… it hurts so good! honestly you get used to it so fast. i think you all need this in your life. and christmas is coming up, so get this baby on your list!

inspire. engage. empower.

empathy. such a very important feeling to have. one of my most important goals is to raise happy, healthy, kind boys. as hayden is getting older, and since becoming a big brother, we have found ourselves centering our world around this one simple word more and more. it is so important for him to understand how others feel, how his brother feels. and essentially how he feels when something happens.

sometimes the easiest thing to help share with our children seems so hard after a while. especially when you feel like you are failing at it. you feel yourself saying and doing the same thing over and over and over again.and you just feel tired and drained. needless to say, i was so happy when we received these fun activity kits by happy heart kid. happy heart kid’s mission is to help parents teach kids values through play. just genius! each activity kit is filled with games and crafts that focus on emotional learning. and for us, it really was the light we needed.

“oh my gosh!” the very words that came from hayden’s mouth as soon as he opened the box. “oh wow!” as he thumbed through the different activities. guys, he was totally excited, too!  we sat at the table together and instantly opened one of his first projects. we started with his ’empathy’ magnet, which was perfect because i was able to explain to him what ’empathy’ is. i called out each letter and he would repeat me, “e. e.e.” as he would sift through the letters.  it made me smile that he was learning so many things in this one, simple craft. and guys, we had so much fun.

i just really think every parent [and child!] could benefit from these activities. i strongly, strongly recommend heading over to happy heart kid and checking out their creative and fun kits. you’ll be so happy you did!

good news; he didn’t smile like that in his school picture!

seventh generation goes coco

this past month seventh generation dropped a brand new line, the coconut care line. free of mineral oil, petrolatum, parabens, phthalates or formaldehyde donors, and sensitive enough for your baby’s sensitive skin. and the coconut smells so, so good. finley reaches for his “butt cream” every time we walk into his room and hayden loves a good coconut lotion massage. along with the new coconut care line, they also decided to give their diapers a new face lift; same goodness you love with an adorable new print. seventh generation products are slowly taking over our house and guys, i am not mad about it one bit. you can check out the products from the coconut care line here.

a gathre giveaway

i remember being so excited when i first stumbled across gathre. i thought to myself, this is the product i have been looking for. that i have dreamed about.

if you’re unfamiliar with gathre, it is a women owned business that set out to create leather bonded mats for everyday uses. from four different sizes, you can fit one for a quick diaper change to a group of ten for a fun playdate. plus the added bonus to the leather; it’s  wipeable, waterproof, and can fold right up to be super compact. but quite possibly my favorite part, this quote from the girls. “we are encouraged by the call to gather. gather memories. gather loved ones. gather adventure. and gather the beautiful!” i just love that.

so if you’ve seen us around or follow along, you know just how much we have loved having our leather blanket. from picnics, to park dates, to lounging as i watch the kiddos play, to a catch all mat under the high chairs, it really has been a part of our every day lives. and for that, i am so excited to be giving away a $70 shop credit towards your own mat. you can enter the giveaway here. good luck! xx

gathre flax maxi is seen here

hayden and finley + dockatot

we first heard about dockatot when finley was a couple of months old. and i think he was eight months by the time we finally bit the bullet and purchased the deluxe. it was everything we were missing. he quickly grew out of the deluxe and we passed it on to our sweet friends.

fast forward a few months and we were thrilled when a dockatot grand arrived at our doorstep. i mean the box alone was endless hours of fun for the boys, but i knew this would be special. because it would be just the right size for the both of them, something they both could use and love.

the boys cuddle together, nap, and lounge around the house. they like it because it soothes them and is oh so comfy. and i like it because they feel extra protected doing so [okay, and the naps might be a tad bit longer]. and as for the box, well it is actually still sitting close by and is currently being used as a ship, gate, or cave. maybe it will get put away. someday.

badenhop best

you guys, it’s semptember. which means, fall! it will be here so soon.  but before we get ahead of ourselves, here’s a peak at what we have been absolutely loving this  past month.

teami tea: i have been a big fan of this all natural loose leaf tea since the day it arrived at my doorstep. the relax tea is absolutely gorgeous. this tea reduces insomnia and you guessed it, promotes relaxation. the antibacterial effects can help prevent + treat colds. and it also can help soothe upset tummies. as for the skinny tea, well i love it because it helps boost your metabolism, raises energy, and suppresses all those breastfeeding sugar cravings this mama gets. you can find the teas here. and be sure to use my code ‘badenhop’ at checkout for 10% off your tea order!


wooden toy camera: this camera was one of hayden’s birthday presents and since, it has always been near. he likes having a camera just like mommy and he’s taken so many ‘photos’ of our summer together. and i’m a sucker for everything wood, so naturally i just adore it

detoxing face wipes: i freaked when i first saw these face wipes. adult acne is real guys. and for me, since  i was pregnant with finley my face has struggled. i first purchased these for my lazy days of face washing, but i’ve loved them so much that they have become part of my regular routine. and plus, every girl needs a little black wipe in their life.
market basket: i am basket obsessed. period. and this plum+sparrow market basket is my favorite. she has many different duties around here, from picking fresh veggies from the garden, to making sure we always know where finley’s wipes + diapers are, to housing blocks for the boys. i see many more in my future. you can find so many beautiful market baskets and more here.

wood watch: if you’ve been following along, you already know how much i love my wood watch. and it hasn’t left my side, i mean wrist [ha! i got jokes], this past month. a little fun fact; because it is made out of wood, all you essential oil lovers can add a drop or two of your favorite oil to diffuse from your watch. how cool is that?!
stain remover+oxy boost: i absolutely swear by this stain remover and this oxy boost combo. and over the past few months, we have been using them more than ever. summer brings grass stained shorts, berry filled tees, and whites that well, don’t end up all that white by the end of the day. these little miracle workers get the tough stains out every.single.time. we always have a small stash of the two in our laundry room. you can shop these honest co. products here

my jord watch+ a giveaway

since having the boys, i have began to simplify my life, and with that i have simplified my own personal style on a day to day basis. of course i still have my ‘fancy jewels’ stored away waiting for those special days, but i rarely leave my house without a watch. of course i am using that said watch for obvious reasons, but honestly, i like the little splash of style they add. so naturally when jord so generously gifted me this new watch, i jumped all over it!

jord is a unique brand offering all different styles and sizes of watches made of…wood! i first fell in love with how different these watches were. they are beautiful. but then i saw this; “the value of a watch is not in being able to tell how much time has passed, but in being aware of the need to make that time count. moments are bigger than minutes and your watch should tell more than time.” and i just love that.

i’ve teamed up with jord for a fun giveaway and a chance for a lucky someone to get a $75 credit towards their own wood watch. you can enter the giveaway here, and just for doing so you get a $20 e-gift card[these will expire 1.117]. the giveaway will close on august 14th, so hurry on over! best of luck. xo

Watches Made From Wood

the story box

for the past week, we have been passing around something  to each other, back and forth. the fevers are high, the tissues are being blown in to, and the coughing does not go unnoticed. we’ve decided to lay low, so when our story box arrived, the boys could hardly contain their excitement. before nap time, we took the box upstairs and tore into it.

so what is the story box? it is a monthly box of books for kids created by a husband and wife team! each box is under $20 and includes two new books for your family to keep. there are different ‘box’ choices to fit your families needs and you’ll also receive a tip card/parent guide inside. we picked the family package, which includes one board book for finley, and one picture book for hayden.

if you’re looking for a cute gift option, or a way to change up the regular ‘every night reading’ like us, then this monthly subscription box is just for you.

badenhop best

i am so excited to introduce to you a new reoccurring post. every month i will be rounding up our favorite items to share with you. products that we are currently loving and items that we just couldn’t get by without having. the only hard part, narrowing it down i’m sure! this is #badenhopbest

ring sling: i am almost positive i have said it before, but i cannot get by without my sling. this one is by wild bird and i love its neutral color. the linen gets softer with each use and i love that i can carry finley on my hip to be even more hands free. it holds babies up to 35 pounds, so every now and then hayden gets a quick carry too.

letter board: this letter board by letterfolk is a serious obsession. guys, i have two! it’s ever changing and sometimes i laugh at myself when i am thinking of a new special quote. for now, we have one downstairs in the dining room and the other has moved to our bedroom. they’re a simple way to decorate,  and definitely will not go unnoticed. plus, you get to decide what it says, making it an absolutely perfect necessity!

mama bird tank: have you heard of the bee and the fox? its a husband+wife duo and they are creating the cutest shirts for kiddos, mamas, and papas. ‘mama bird’ is the original design i fell in love with and since then it’s been repeat purchases. i am loving this tank for the hot, muggy summer we are having.

bonnet: i think my children will wear bonnets forever. that being said, we are loving this one from briar. it’s brimmed, making sure to cover those eyes from the sun, yet still light weight enough to not overheat little man, making it our summer go to.

salt water sandals: these sandals by salt water sandals are made of genuine leather. and the great thing about them, is you can wear them in the water and they will last and last. we spend most of our weekends by the water and these have been a staple for us. this style comes in babies all the way up to mama sizes. naturally, twinning, i mean tripling is always a good idea, too!

matte lipstick: i’m a girl that can’t go far without her lip stick. and on most days i love wearing a neutral color with a matte finish. i am loving the sinful cinnamon by buxom and this one by nars.

all over ointment: i had the greatest pleasure of working with tubby todd recently and i am so thankful for that opportunity, because with out it, who knows if i would have found this all natural ointment. the all over ointment is great for cuts, diaper rash, and dry patches. i use this on finley’s bum daily and he has been ‘smooth as a baby’s bottom’ since.

hazel village animals: at christmas time, finley was gifted with max raccoon. and since, both boys now each have added another animal to their collection. everything about hazel village is darling. from their little stories about the animals, to the packaging, the custom hand embroidering, to the animals themselves. speaking of the animals, they are made from organic cotton fleece and just the softest things you have ever touched.

picnic partying

on sunday, we threw together a tiny little party with our family to celebrate our soon to be three year old. we picnicked for lunch at the river, munching on things like bbq chicken, macaroni + broccoli salads, veggies, chips, and lots of cake. we took boat rides and splashed in the water. naps were skipped, but the fun wasn’t. hayden talked about how his friends came and ‘ate his cake’ the entire night, and well the next day too. i think it’s safe to say he definitely enjoyed his day.

line drying + linen spray

one of my favorite things about summer, is hanging our clothes +linens out to dry to the warm sunshine. when we moved into our home, i was pleased to see the old hearted, very loved, clothesline on the side of our house.

i try to keep our laundry process at home as natural as possible, from the laundry soap we use, to the fabric softener i throw in [did you know vinegar is amazing for this?!]. i always like to add a drop or two of purify essential oil into the wash as well. and i don’t know what it is about line drying, but something about it makes laundry fun. i look forward to the daily chore and the boys love helping me. so besides the ‘feel good’, happy feelings i get, there are also a few other benefits from line drying as well. using a clothesline is environmental friendly, your clothes+linens will last longer, the sun is a natural whitener, goodbye wrinkles, and the smell is just divine. before taking everything off the line, i like to walk through, misting a linen spray just to give them a little something extra. this so happens to be hayden’s favorite part, well second to running through the sheets! if you’re searching for a linen spray for yourself, i hope you’ll like this one. now another day brings another load of laundry, so we’re off to conquer that pile. xo!

natural linen spray

2 cups distilled water

2 tablespoons witch hazel or vodka

30 drops essential oil; i used lavender.


a beach daycation

on friday, hayden saw me post a picture of the beach. as soon as he saw it he was all, “i want to go to the beach. i want to go to the beach, ya! ya! ya! ya!” over and over and over again. this pretty much went on the majority of the morning. no, the majority of the day! at one point we even had to make a phone call to daddy to tell him all about his grand plans.  and he even came down the stairs with a handful of underwear and socks, saying “i go to the beach!’ bless his heart.

but we live in ohio. and the closest ‘beach’ [you know, the whole ocean +beach combo thing] is hours away [emphasis on the hours part]. so we sat there thinking for a bit, and that’s when the lightbulb went off. what if we took a day trip to lake michigan?! water + beach, problem solved. we woke up a little extra early saturday morning, piled in the car, and started down the road. in three short hours hayden had his beach. and finley would be able to experience the beach for the first time.

we decided to stop at warren dunes state park. the water was blue, there was a nice little river behind the lake where the kids splashed and swam. we built the tallest sand castles, hunted down the softest rocks, climbed the sand dunes, and munched on chips and demo snacks. hayden would ribbit like a frog across the river, and finley, well he just munched on sticks the entire time. and he definitely was not afraid of putting his face in the water. both boys were just so, so happy. once leaving the beach, the boys were snoozing hard as soon as they hit their seats. we stopped at a local cafe for take out, where we got the yummiest pizza i have ever tasted. our car is covered in sand, we might be a little crispy, but this first beach trip as a family of four is one for the books. i’m already daydreaming of our next mini road trip back.

market bag by maewoven; beach mat by gathre

on hayden: swim shorts by swim zip, fedora from h&m 

on finley: swim shirt from gap, swim diaper by honest co., sun hat from gap, bonnet by fin & vince; doll by hazel village; blanket by lostboy goods 

on me: swim separates by kortni jeans; mama bird tee by the bee & the fox, denim shorts by madewell, hat from old navy, sandals by saltwater sandals;  sling by wildbird

strawberry pickin’

happy first day of summer! what’s summer anyways if you don’t make a trip to pick some berries? we went to a local orchard this morning, and spent a good hour picking the juiciest, yummiest, ripe red strawberries. hayden diligently looked over each one before he would place it in his basket. finley sat in the same spot for a good twenty minutes stuffing his face with whatever he picked. it was then, when hayden realized he could get a taste of them too. and then this mama had to hustle to keep up! the sun was beating down on us, but there was the most perfect breeze cooling us off. the boys were covered in juice, their bodies stained red, but boy did we al enjoy ourselves. we will be eating strawberry ice cream, strawberry jam, and strawberry shortcake for days!

on hayden: tee from old navy, shorts from gap, sandals by saltwater sandals, fedora from h&m

on finley: onesie by fin & vince, bloomers by billie blooms, sandals by saltwater sandals, bonnet by fin & vince 

finley’s wild rumpus

on sunday, we celebrated finley’s first birthday with family and friends. it was just the most perfect, beyond beautiful day celebrating our littlest love. he sure is one lucky fella. the love he received today, and every day, is such a blessing.



when it came time to decide on a theme, i loved the idea of a wild one. get it, he’s one. and he’s certainly wild. i mean, he was on the go-go-go the entire day. so i loved the idea of incorporating ‘where the wild things are’ into the party.  and so out came, finley’s wild rumpus.


food was eaten. cakes were smashed [literally + figuratively ]. presents were opened and played with. it also needs to be noted that finley would walk up to his cake, grab ahandful, and walk to the crowd to pick someone out to hand the piece to. such a sharer! we had the best time. and i cannot believe we now have a one year old. happiest birthday to our baby.

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banner by matriarch handmade; birth poster by the birth poster; letter board by letterfolk

on finley: romper by childhoods clothing, crown by oeuf nye, from fawn shoppe, moccs by little pine outfitters 

on hayden: shirt from zara, shorts by childhoods clothing 

on me: hat from forever21, dress from roolee, shoes by lotta from stockholm, watch by arvo

a day trip to the children’s zoo

we’ve been waiting since last summer to make a trip back to the children’s zoo. so on monday, we did just that, grandma included. we enjoyed a sky safari over the african journey, feeding the giraffes, taking pony rides, and roaming around the indiana family farm. okay, really we enjoyed every bit of it and we’re already planning our trip back with daddy.

on hayden: romper by fin & vince, hat by slyfox threads 

on finley: tee by the bee & the fox co., bloomers by billie blooms, brimmed bonnet by briar, shoes from saltwater sandals // paci clip by nomilu

on me: tank by the bee & the fox co., jeans from h&m

a healthy treat

these cookies. yummy gooey chocolatey goodness. i have had the sweetest tooth lately (okay let’s be honest, i just want to eat everything in site) so this afternoon i whipped up a simple yummy treat for desert…or to snack on as soon as they were done baking. i think you will really like this one!

i stumbled upon this recipe a bit ago, while scrolling through endless amounts of “healthy” options and let me tell you, this one is heavenly. i mean, you won’t even feel bad if you eat half the batch! and that’s exactly what happens around here. they are so quick to disappear and rarely last a full two days in our home. if you’re feeling the need to indulge in a guilt free treat, make these! just do it.

healthy oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

  • 3/4 cup oat flour – i grind old fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil – melted
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

in a medium bowl, stir oat flour, old-fashioned oats, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt together. i throw in a few tablespoons of chia seeds as well. in another bowl, stir together vanilla, egg, brown sugar, and coconut oil (make sure this is measured at liquid state). add dry ingredients to wet. fold in chocolate chips. i also add in a handful of raisins. cover bowl and chill for thirty minutes. bake in a 350 degree oven for 7-9 minutes. grab two at a time. enjoy!

on finley: onesie by fin & vince

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the bag

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the diaper bag. the black hole. the place where you go to grab something, and dig for like ever, pulling out every tiny thing, smushed puffs included. only to never really end up finding what you were looking for in the first place.  it’s the place where crumbled up receipts and lost hair ties go to die and where that cute paci clip has been hiding for the past month.

when we first had hayden, we had a ‘legit’ diaper bag. you know, the one with a million different compartments.  and we filled that thing to the max. mostly with everything we thought we needed.  it didn’t take us long to figure out that those ‘thoughts’ were just that. did i really need to be carrying a tube of vaseline, the snot sucker, an extra bottle for my breastfed baby, and nail clippers? absolutely not! as he grew, the two of us shared a bag and i got to ditch the extra load (and the commercialized diaper bag). now, carrying for both kids + myself, it is so important for us to simplify. the things we ‘think’ we might need, are now tucked away in a small basket we keep in the car.

here’s what our every day carrying looks like.

  • our diaper bag i recently was gifted this nena&co daybag II (similar here) from my sweet husband + boys for my birthday. and i am slightly obsessed. the patterns, the colors. the vintage fabric. the leather. it’s all so lovely and it has been the perfect size for the three of us.
  • swaddle blanket nursing cover. rain protector. nap cuddler. you name it, we will be using it for something. we love our lost boy goods blankets. made of bamboo muslin, they are hand dyed by the sweetest mama and are as soft as butter.
  • snacks i mean, when in doubt, hand the kids some food. #amiright we can never have enough snacks on hand and it’s the one thing i have to make sure we have packed and ready to go. total lifesaver. we have been huge fans of the happy family brand, and are super excited about these new ‘clearly crafted’ pouches. our snack container is the sumo snack stacker. it has two more stacks that can be attached and is perfect for extra long days.
  • binkies+toys  i always make sure we have one paci with a clip and one toy for each boy in the bag. anymore and it shifts back to the whole black hole mess. finley currently loves chomping on this teether. i love it because it’s free from all chemicals+toxins.
  • essential oils it’s essential (haha girl’s got jokes!) for us to carry hand sanitizer + a few essential oils that we use most. you can find more on essential oils here.
  • a bonnet mainly because it’s cute, but also to keep those little ears warm on chilly spring days. and here in ohio, those have been happening more than not. our  favorite bonnet is this one from briar handmade. it’s soft and the perfect neutral.
  • lotion dry hands + chapped skin. it’s a must. we’re currently using the ‘charity pot’ from lush.
  • our sling i just used a sling for the first time a few months ago and i am never looking back. seriously, i cannot say enough good things about our wildbird. it’s so easy to use and the fabric is super breathable. added bonus? the hip carry! can i get one in every color?! (okay that defeats the simplifying process, but still)
  • diapers+wipes+booty cream because hello, DIAPER bag! we’re proud supporters of the honest company for three years now. you can read more on who they are and what they have to offer here.

and that’s basically it! of course it’s always changing and we are always simplifying. but for now, these are the items we cannot get through the day without. our go-tos. our must haves. what are your favorite things to carry?

a garden to feed us

ah spring, it has to be my second favorite season. the sun starts shining more, the birds wake you up with their pretty songs, and there is so much new life [including the two litters of kittens we have out back]. my plant babies are sprouting new arms, the grass is turning green, and our trees and bushes are budding. but planting our garden, well that has to be my favorite part of spring.yesterday, the boys and i took a trip to a local greenhouse where we always buy a few tomato and pepper plants. and a few leads to a lot. this year when we pulled up, to our surprise it wasn’t open yet and with our luck, was opening in a few days. so what did we do? well of course we took this as a sign to try out a new place, so we hopped back in the car and drove a few miles down the road. perfect idea. this beauty had five different greenhouses, filled with plants + flowers + cacti + veggies and fruits. hayden even tried to convince me into taking home the two little parakeets that we’re ‘free to a good home’. it didn’t work.

we spent the rest of the afternoon planting little seeds + the plants we picked out at the greenhouse. hayden dug tiny little holes for me, and sprinkled the dirt back into the hole for me. fin, well he had more fun trying to eat everything. including that dirt.

soon there will be snap peas and red peppers to munch on. sunflowers blooming so big as they look over our garden. tomatoes that we will turn into pasta, and sauce, and salsa. spinach to add to our afternoon smoothies. fresh herbs to spice up our eats. and plenty of green veggies to make us happy.

in our garden:

  • blackberries
  • carrots
  • cauliflower
  • cucumber
  • green beans
  • green + yellow + red peppers
  • jalapeños
  • onions
  • romaine
  • snap peas
  • spinach
  • strawberries
  • tomatoes
  • zucchini

on hayden:

fin&vince stripe romper, freshly picked ‘weathered brown’ moccs

on finley:

fin&vince tomato romper, freshly picked ‘weathered brown’ moccs, nomiLU classic beaded pacifier clip

natural cleaning our home

when we were blessed with our sweet hayden, it became clear to us, that we should rid our home of chemicals and toxins to our best ability [it’s all about balance, right?! balancing out the bowl of lucky charms i will eat, with the natural cleaner. you get the picture].  to do and to use things more naturally. having him really opened up our eyes to the idea of it all. i wanted to do better for him, be better for him. this is when the idea of essential oils really came into play for us.  we use our oils endless amounts of ways [immune system support, beauty products, a calming baby lotion, brighten our moods, and even to spice up our food to name a few] but one of our favorite ways to use them in our home, is to create natural cleaning products. not only are homemade cleaners cheaper in the long run, they’re safer [no yucky chemicals or toxins here] to use and just as effective. a win win, if you ask me!

today i found myself whipping up some new cleaning solutions and a yummy air freshener while the boys were napping.  bonus? it took all but ten minutes. i’ve  definitely found different recipes along the way, and i am usually switching it up, but these are my current favorites. i hope you find them useful! happy cleaning! xo

all purpose spray:

  • 1 1/2cups distilled water
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 30 drops essential oil – i like 15 lemon + 15 lavender

disinfecting spray:

  • 1 1/2 cups distilled water
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 30 drops essential oil – i like on guard

freshening spray:

  • 1 3/4 cups distilled water
  • 1/4 cup witch hazel
  • 30 drops essential oil – i like 10 drops lavender + 10 drops lemon + 10 drops rosemary or 8 drops lemon + 8 drops lime + 8 drops grapefruit + 8 drops wild orange or 30 drops purify

mix all ingredients together, and store in an amber spray bottle. these recipes work for 16 oz bottles.