Palm Springs Swan Pool

Here Comes Summer

And boy am I ready for it! I love the signs of summer. The other day we were walking in our hood and we saw a whole gang of high…

Palm Springs Swan Pool

And boy am I ready for it! I love the signs of summer. The other day we were walking in our hood and we saw a whole gang of high school kids taking prom pictures on their front lawn. Don’t you remember those days?! Prom meant the end of the school year, the start of summer, and about a million adventures stretching ahead of you. I’ve got some grownup adventures planned for this summer and I seriously can’t wait.

I’m all jazzed and you know me — with the change of a new season I like to do a little online window shopping. So here’s what I’m daydreaming about for summer. And by the way, did you guys know that I totally have your back with Lovely Indeed’s style roundups? I make a conscious effort never to feature something that I wouldn’t buy myself. When I’m putting together a roundup, I don’t usually include items over 100 bucks, and most things are way down under the $50 range. It’s a fine balance of quality pieces that real people can afford. Because I know that your hard-earned duckets are precious. Just saying — I’m looking out for ya. And now, summer! xoxo

Affordable Summer Style

Romper. Ring. Nail Polish. Scarf. Swan. Cup. Shoes.

Palm Springs Pool photo by Mary Costa.

DIY Instagram Memory Game

DIY Instagram Memory Game + Giveaway

It’s time for more DIY games! I looooved Memory when I was little. I was a Memory champ. These days, I play it with my four year old niece and…

DIY Instagram Memory Game

DIY Instagram Memory Game

It’s time for more DIY games! I looooved Memory when I was little. I was a Memory champ. These days, I play it with my four year old niece and she totally trounces me. Remember when you were little and had a mind like a steel trap? Yeah, my steel trap is kind of like a wet cardboard box these days. But I digress. DIY Instagram Memory! This here is the easiest little DIY you can imagine — because the “DIY” part means you just hop online and order it. Be sure you get to the end of the post to see how you can win a set of Instagram Memory cards with your own photos!

I’ve introduced you all a few times to my very favorite way to print Instagram photos, with the gang over at Social Print Studio. SPS has a new product that I was checking out and immediately knew this was the perfect purpose for it. (They’re really supposed to be contact cards or business cards, but psh. This is way better.) Here’s how to put together your very own Memory game with your very own Instagram photos!

DIY Instagram Memory Game

Make Time: 10 Minutes

1. Pull up SPS’s Contact Card page and click “Create Yours.”
2. Select a set of 60.
3. Sign in using your Instagram account.
4. Browse your Instagram photos on the next screen and click on the images you’d like to use. You’ll choose 30 images. On each image, click the Up arrow once to order 2 of each (so you can match them, duh!).
5. Once your photos are selected, click “Choose Template.” This is where you decide what you want the back of your Memory cards to look like. Choose the one you’d like best! You can pick one with text and type in a message, or you can upload your own image. If you like the image we created, you can download it right here and upload it for your own game!
6. Click “Preview Your Print.” If everything looks on the up and up, you’re ready to order and finish the purchasing process.

DIY Instagram Memory Game

Isn’t this just the most fun? Mr. Lovely and I had a ball choosing which photos to use. And we’ve already played with our niece, and yes, she won again. I think this could be such a fun gift for grownups or little ones!

Now! Wanna win a set of your own? Head over to my Instagram account to enter — it’ll just take you a few seconds. Then you can make your own set and give your Memory muscle a little exercise! Big thanks to the gang at Social Print Studio for the game night throwback! xoxo

DIY Instagram Memory Game

instagram-memory6

P.S. See all of our past game night DIYs right here!

Tutorial photos by Lovely Indeed. All other photos by Scot Woodman.

Stroller Accessories

Munchkin Milestone // Strollin’

When I look back at Henry’s first days and weeks at home, I realize I was so totally… clueless. And scared. I remember kind of walking around in a fog,…

Stroller Accessories

Stroller Accessories

When I look back at Henry’s first days and weeks at home, I realize I was so totally… clueless. And scared. I remember kind of walking around in a fog, just hoping that if he started crying I would be able to get him to stop. And so I was totally freaked out to leave the house. Because what if he started screaming and I couldn’t fix it?! There was one day when he was maybe a couple of weeks old — I really wanted to get out of the house so I put him in his little bassinet stroller to go for a walk. We got out the door and after about a half a block he started losing his mind. Just screaming his tiny head off. I walked faster, thinking maybe the motion would calm him down. No dice. I was sure all the neighbors were looking outside and silently judging me for my screaming baby. So I practically ran back home to get him inside, totally defeated, to find out that he just needed a fresh diaper.

Flash forward to now, and one of my favorite things to do is to take Henry strolling through our hood. It’s funny — while we’re at home, he’s so bubbly and talkative and smiley, but when we go out walking he is all eyes, just watching and looking at and learning everything he can. I love to see him notice trees, and birds, and dogs. Just recently we flipped him around so he’s forward facing in the stroller and he’s all about it. That kid is a curious guy.

Stroller Accessories

Since the weather’s been nicer and we’ve been able to go out more and more, we decided it was time to get serious about making our stroller a little more functional. When Henry and I walk to the store to pick up things for dinner, I can hang our bags on a little hook. (And I can “accidentally” grab a Starbucks and use this cupholder, instead of trying to awkwardly push a stroller one-handed while I sip my iced chai from the other hand.)

Stroller Accessories

Stroller AccessoriesAnd this little stroller organizer? This thing is brilliant. It’s got a spot for diapers, a wipe dispenser, and insulated spots for bottles. But my faaaavorite is the touch-sensitive iPhone pocket. Little dude and I like to listen to music on my phone when we walk and this makes it so much easier. Now I won’t almost drop my phone down a storm drain while I’m choosing a new song. Not that I’ve done that before or anything…

Stroller Accessories

I’m so, so glad that we’re past those days of being scared to take the little one anywhere. Getting out and about is not only a good thing for him but it makes me feel so much more sane than being in the house all day long. Having the stroller decked out and at the ready makes it so easy to just toss him in and go find an adventure somewhere. If you have little ones, what’s your favorite thing to do with them outside the house? xoxo

Stroller Accessories

Stroller Accessories

This post is sponsored by Munchkin. All opinions are my very own. Munchkin rids the world of the mundane by developing clever, innovative solutions that make family life safer, easier, and more fun. You can find Munchkin products at Munchkin.comTargetBabies’R’UsWalmart, and Amazon. It’s the little things!

Avocados in Half

This Week + Ten Things

Remember our old Ten Things posts? I kinda miss them! So I thought I’d do a little combo pack and wrap up with ten awesome things that happened this week….

Avocados in Half

Remember our old Ten Things posts? I kinda miss them! So I thought I’d do a little combo pack and wrap up with ten awesome things that happened this week. And away we go!

1. We had a little Cinco de Mayo fiesta at our place and finally invited all of our neighbors over! We’ve been in our house since September and this is the first time we’ve even met some of them.
2. Because of the party, we had to clean the house. And do all the laundry. So the house is already clean and we can skip it this weekend. Boom.
3. We partnered with BabyLit for an awesome giveaway! Truly, I love working with the brands that we know, love, and use every day.
4. Ryan landed a huuuuuge web design client, so we celebrated.
5. I made it to the 6 am spin class at the gym three times. Somebody high five me, hard.
6. Guacamole. Bowls and bowls of guacamole! Did I mention I love guacamole?
7. Henry started sitting up by himself! (For about 15 seconds at a time and then he flops over, but it still counts, right?!)
8. I lined up a couple of crazy good collaborations here on the blog. You guys are gonna love them.
9. Somebody told me I’m their “DIY spirit animal.” Thinking of putting it on my new business cards.
10. We made plans with Amber for a little weekend lunch date with our tiny people. I can’t wait to squeeze Markus until he pops.

Okay your turn! Tell me something awesome that happened this week! And then let’s all go out and nail it this weekend. See ya, gang. xoxo

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

DIY Dip-Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

I’ve had some plain flour sack towels sitting in my supply closet for literally years, just waiting and waiting and waiting for me to figure out something cool to do…

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

I’ve had some plain flour sack towels sitting in my supply closet for literally years, just waiting and waiting and waiting for me to figure out something cool to do with them. I had this idea that I wanted to make some towels with words on them somehow, but I just couldn’t quite figure it out. Embroidery? Too hard. Stencil and paint? Didn’t really feel like it. So when I teamed up with Epson to try out their iron-on label maker, I knew exactly how I wanted to use that bad boy.

I love these things. Probably entirely too much. I love how the sharp typography contrasts with the dreamy dip dye, and I love that you can make ’em say whatever you want! I plan to make a million of ’em saying different things and use them as hostess gifts. But before that, let me tell you how to make your very own.

Materials

Make Time: 1 Hour (Plus Drying Time)

1. Decide on the phrases you’d like to use. I think it could be so fun to make these as a gift and use the recipient’s go-to catch phrases! Like, if I made some for Ryan they’d just all say “Nailed It.”
2. Type your phrases into the Epson label maker. Decide on your font and style (I love that you can change it up!), and hit print. Print all four phrases. Set aside.
3. Prepare a dye bath for your towels. In a bowl, combine about 1/3 of the bottle of dye with 2-3 cups of very hot water. (I adjusted the measurements a bit to get a more saturated color in a shorter amount of time!)
4. Fold your towel in quarters. Wearing rubber gloves (if you don’t want pink or blue fingers), dip about two thirds of the towel into the dye, starting with the unfolded ends. To create a slight ombre effect, leave just the ends in the dye the longest — we left these in for about five minutes.
5. Repeat the process for each color of towel (or do them all the same color!). Rinse all the excess dye from the towels and give them a quick run through the washing machine on cold. Dry and iron each towel.
6. Trim the ends of your iron on labels. Arrange them to your liking on your towel.
7. Carefully press down directly on the labels once they’re in place. Press firmly for about 10 seconds to adhere them to the towel.

Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towel Tutorial

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen TowelsTake these gorgeous things out at your next party and have a ball! Better yet, make a bunch of them for your guests to take home as party favors. Aren’t they so fun?! And now: go treat yo’ self. xoxo

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

DIY Dip Dye Typography Kitchen Towels

This post is sponsored by Epson. All opinions are my very own. Thank you for being supportive of the sponsors who help keep Lovely Indeed rocking! 

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

Hey hey game night lovers! We’re kicking off this year’s DIY game night series today! I’m starting to think these DIY games are my very favorite things to make. Aside…

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

Hey hey game night lovers! We’re kicking off this year’s DIY game night series today! I’m starting to think these DIY games are my very favorite things to make. Aside from the fact that I love me a game night, it’s just been so fun to reimagine these old classics that I used to play for hours on end. Up today: DIY Checkers! This one’s getting a leather, gold, and cement twist. Because that’s how we do. And it’s perfect for rolling up and taking with you on the road. Let’s get cracking!

Materials

Make Time: 2 Hours (Plus Drying Time)

To make the board:

1. Cut a piece of leather 13″ x 13″.
2. Mask off the outer 1/2″ of each edge with washi tape.
3. Mask off the first set of squares. Measure 1.5″ from the edge of the outer washi tape, and mask off with the top edge of another line of tape. Then from that top edge, place another line of tape so that the bottom edge is 1.5″ away. Keep masking with these same measurements.
4. Paint the large open squares. Once you’re done, gently and carefully pull away the washi tape.
5. Once the paint is dry (ours took about 10 minutes), mask off the opposite set of squares. Use the same process as #3, but you’ll be masking over the squares that are already painted gold.
6. Paint these squares and remove the washi tape. Allow all paint to dry.

To make the checkers:

1. Mix 1/2 cup of Cement All with 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon of water. Stir thoroughly with the popsicle stick until all lumps are gone.
2. Spoon a teaspoon of the cement mixture into each hexagon tray. Work quickly (but carefully!) so that the cement doesn’t start drying — it will start to harden shortly after you mix it.
3. Tap the sides of the hexagon tray to get rid of any bubbles or uneven spots in the cement.
4. Allow the cement to dry for about an hour and pop the hexagons out of the tray. You’ll need to make 24 pieces, so repeat the process a second time.
5. Once all the pieces are made and dried, paint ’em up! For a colorblocked look, tape off half a checker with washi tape and paint the other half. Remove the tape while the paint is still wet. Set all the checkers aside to dry.

DIY Leather Checker Board Tutorial

Boooom! Set up your checker board and get all Bobby Fischer up in there! (Yes, I know he was a chess player. It’s the only reference I could think of. Cut me some slack here.) This board is perfect if you’re traveling and want to take some games along — just roll it up and squish it into the bottom of your suitcase. Or if you love it way too much (like I do), you can just leave it out on your coffee table forever and ever. Come back next week for our next DIY game! xoxo

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

DIY Leather and Cement Checkers Game

P.S. See all of our past game night DIYs right here!

Tutorial photos by Lovely Indeed. All other photos by Scot Woodman.

BabyLit Books

Henry’s Favorite Books + A BabyLit Giveaway!

I started reading to Henry the week we brought him home from the hospital. It was kind of my default. When I was so tired I couldn’t think of anything…

BabyLit Books

BabyLit Books

I started reading to Henry the week we brought him home from the hospital. It was kind of my default. When I was so tired I couldn’t think of anything to do with him or say to him, I would sit him in his little baby chair and we would look at books. And I swear, even though he was just a handful of days old, he liked it. And he still does! That kid has always loved to look at books. These days he helps us turn pages.

Back then and still now, months later, some of his very favorites are the BabyLit books. Ryan and I stumbled across them while we were making our baby registry and went nuts. They’re brilliant! They’re board books, with modern takes on the classics, and they teach basic concepts like numbers, colors, opposites, animals, and more. But what I love most are the illustrations. They’re just gorgeous. And it makes it so fun to read as a parent — I always find myself flipping through them because they’re so lovely to look at.

Back in the day when he was teeny tiny, Henry’s favorite was Huck Finn. Maybe because I read it with an accent? Or maybe because he liked the pictures of the outdoors — he’s a nature-loving kid. These days, he loves Moby Dick. Which, come to think of it, I also read with an accent. (A salty ship captain accent, obviously.)

BabyLit Books

BabyLit Books

babylit5

I just treasure these books and I love imagining Hank as an older kid reading the original versions of these abbreviated classics. Can you imagine?! One day my tiny person will be old enough to read all of The Jungle Book. I can’t even handle that.

And gang, in the hopes that you’ll love these books as much as we do, I’ve got not one but TWO giveaways for you! Here on the blog, we’re giving away a super cool Moby Dick set! You have the chance to win the Moby Dick book, play set, puzzle, and tote. See the Rafflecopter below for all the ways to enter.

And if you can’t get enough, head over to my Instagram where we are giving away an Alice in Wonderland set! Big thanks to BabyLit for inspiring our tiny people to love to read. xoxo

BabyLit Books

Product for this post and giveaway graciously provided by BabyLit. All opinions are my very own.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

May Lovely Girl: Baby Wearin' Mama

May’s Lovely Girl // Baby Wearin’ Mama

Each month we feature a new Lovely Girl, meant to inspire you to explore the zillions of ways you can lovely up your life. These gals are based on real-life…

Each month we feature a new Lovely Girl, meant to inspire you to explore the zillions of ways you can lovely up your life. These gals are based on real-life lovelies that we know and adore, and are illustrated by none other than the super-talented Lindsey! May’s Lovely Girl is inspired by one of our very favorite baby wearin’ mamas in the blogosphere! Any guesses who it might be? We’ll send a little something special to the first person who guesses correctly in the comments!

UPDATE: Congrats to Allie for guessing that Ann-Marie was our inspiration for the May Lovely Girl!

May Lovely Girl: Baby Wearin' Mama

The Baby Wearin’ Mama is a force to be reckoned with. She loves bringing her little sidekick along with her wherever she goes, whether it’s to work, to play, or just to her favorite coffee shop. This is one multitasking mama, and she’s got the juggling act down — answering emails, cooking dinners, making business deals, folding tiny socks, all while keeping the little one snug and close. Because more than anything, this Lovely Girl knows that having baby close is not just good for baby but good for mama’s heart, too. And at the end of the day, this Lovely puts the little one to sleep so she can enjoy a good ol’ glass of her favorite red wine with her main squeeze. Because even Baby Wearin’ Lovelies need some grownup time! xoxo

May Lovely Girl: Baby Wearin' Mama

Hat. Agenda. Baby Shampoo. Lip Balm. Bracelet. Cup. Romper. Shoes.

Illustration by Lindsey McCord

Let's Hit the Road

Planning a Road Trip (And a $500 Giveaway!)

It’s about that time! Every year instead of exchanging gifts, Mr. Lovely and I plan an anniversary trip and it’s time to start thinking about where we’ll be headed this year.

Let's Hit the Road

It’s about that time! Every year instead of exchanging gifts, Mr. Lovely and I plan an anniversary trip and it’s time to start thinking about where we’ll be headed this year. Last year I was preggo so our trip was pretty low-key. And this year we’ll be taking Henry with us! In thinking about what might be a fun and easy way to travel with the little dude, we hit on a pretty rad idea: Let’s Go RVing.

Go RVing

Aaahhh doesn’t that sound so fun?! Just us three crazy kids, out on the open road, cruising along in an RV. You know I love a road trip. And with the kiddo along with us we can take it easy and go at our own pace. We started putting together a dream itinerary and came up with a pretty sweet plan: West Coast, Top to Bottom.

Here’s what we’re kicking around. Start off in Seattle. Introduce Henry to Pike Place Market, the waterfront, and that whole beautiful city. Hop in the RV and cruise down to Portland. Stop by Pok Pok, and bug Chelsey for a while. Continue south and spend some time in Napa and California wine country. (My crazy husband has never been!) Keep heading down the west coast all the way to LA, and spend some time in our favorite haunts. Finish up by cruising just a little farther to Palm Springs and wrap up with a day or two in the desert!

Does that sound insanely fun or what? I just love the west coast and it’s been so long since we’ve gotten to experience all of our favorite cities. I got so pumped on the idea I put together a little road trip-inspired mood board full of things that I’d use to stock the RV.

gorvingString lights. Outdoor rug. Picnic table. Wine glasses. Camera. Flamingo towels. Baby bath robe. Speakers.

Have you ever been RVing? I’d love your input! And here’s the fun part: Go RVing is having a little contest over on their Facebook page. 20 of us bloggers have put together our dream RV trip, and you can vote on who will win. The winner blogger will hit the road for some travels, and two lucky voters (that’s you!) will win a $500 gift card, just for voting! Voting is open during the month of May, and winners will be announced June 1. So head over and vote for your chance to win 500 smackers.

So where would you Go RVing? I’d love to know if you have any parts of the country that you would explore. And if you’re planning a summer road trip, hit up Go RVing’s Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube channels for planning and inspiration! xoxo

VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE TRIP

Icon design: Space Needle. Guy. Wine. Camera. Cactus. Map.
Image sources: Desert. Feet. Airstream.

gorvinglogo

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Go RVing via Burst Media. The opinions and text are all mine.

Henry 5 Months

Henry // Five Months

Holy crapola, we have a five month old kid. I hate to sound like a broken record but I have no idea how he’s this old already. Another broken record…

Henry 5 Months

Henry 5 Months

Holy crapola, we have a five month old kid. I hate to sound like a broken record but I have no idea how he’s this old already. Another broken record track: every single day is more awesome than the day before.

Five month old Henry is a happy dude. He has a big gummy smile and laughs when you tickle his armpits. He’s obsessed with staring at trees and ceiling fans. Loves reading books and helping turn the pages. Stops in the middle of nursing to look up at me, touch my face, and sigh a lazy sigh. And then my heart explodes.

Five month old Henry doesn’t seem to be scared of much or dislike too many things. He’s an observer. You can watch him watch something and learn about it. When we are out and about, he’ll hardly look you in the face because he’s so interested in looking around at the world. His mom and dad approve.

Happy 5 months, tiny dude! xoxo
Henry 5 Months
Henry 5 Months
Baby and Mama

Adventures in Parenthood // The Guessing Game

My mom has always said about babies that it gets so much easier when they can just tell you what they want. Obviously that makes sense in my brain but I’ve…

Baby and Mama

My mom has always said about babies that it gets so much easier when they can just tell you what they want. Obviously that makes sense in my brain but I’ve been feeling it much more acutely lately, as Henry is getting older and starting to have stronger opinions. And when you’ve got a little one who’s clearly trying to tell you something but you have no idea what, parenting starts to feel like one majestically long, magnificently orchestrated guessing game.

Take Hank this week, for example. I submit to you Exhibit A: A 5-month-old, slightly fussy (which is unusual), with suddenly short naps, putting everything in his mouth, drooling all over the joint, grabbing only his left ear, a stuffy nose, and only interested in nursing on one side. Ready, guess, go! Teething? Head cold? Ready for more solids? Reflux meds not working any more? Developmental leaps getting him all cranky? Bad reaction to me trying to add cheese back into my diet?

See what I mean? It’s like being a detective! How in the world are you supposed to know if he’s grabbing his ear because his teeth hurt, or his ear hurts, or he’s sleepy, or he just happened to find his ear and liked how it felt? You’ve got to make this extensive flow chart inside of your brain that cross references all the other symptoms and puts it all together and spits out the right answer to try to help your tiny person. All while little dude is looking into your eyes and just begging for help. Ouchie, my heart.

Truth be told, Henry is a peach. An absolute peach. He’s a chill, happy little sweetie and the challenges we have had with him most likely pale in comparison to what some parents go through with their kiddos. We’re just in a tiny little bumpy patch and I recognize that. But none of that makes it any easier when we’re all just trying to do right by our own tiny people. And if, as a parent, you’re having an off day, the guessing game can really get to you! It’s times like those that I’m so thankful that Ryan is on my team — because where one of us stumbles, the other one picks up and carries on.

Any mamas (or dads!) out there feelin’ me? Have you been playing the guessing game with your little people? Someone with older kids please tell me how wonderful it is when they can use words to communicate! (And by the way, any baby whisperers out there know how to tell when your kid is teething?) xoxo