Favorites From The Week

Happy Friday, friends! I hope your week has been filled with spring-like temperatures, smiles, and lots of love. And if not, unfortunately we've all been there and probably have said, TGIF. The boys started t-ball this week and I am loving that they're both on the same team, at least for this year. It makes running around a little easier for the time being. 

Our weather has been beautiful and put everyone in the best mood this week. All the praise hands for that. In fact, I'm sitting out on my deck typing up this post and feeling really grateful right now. I took a minute to admire the birds chirping, a blue jay just pasted by and a cardinal isn't far from me. I can see some flowers budding and a beautiful light breeze passing by as the baby is crunching a few leaves that gathered in the corner. It's moments like this that I appreciate God's simple reminders and promises to us. 

I also have some changes coming to this little space of mine. I'm finally taking the leap (should have done it years ago) and will be migrating everything over to WordPress. The timing feels right and I've always heard great things about essentially taking things to the next level so I'm excited to see how all of this goes. 

Here's a look at some of my favorites from the week...

Women's Conference-Joy Restored:

there's something really special about gathering with a group of women for the sole purpose of worshiping and drawing closer to God. I had the opportunity to attend a women's conference with some of my dear friends. It was a two day event with lots of fun, encouraging take aways, worship, and the feeling of peace. The featured speaker was author Rebekah Lyons. Her story of grace and working through her own struggles was very inspiring. Sometimes as christians we feel the need to be put together, to hide our feelings, and ashamed to talk about real life struggles. But you see, the thing is, God gives us continued grace and knows that we are humanly flawed. We weren't created to be perfect, we were created to seek his perfect peace and lean on Him continually. 

I truly appreciated how real and down to earth the whole message was. In a way, it had me relating it to social media. Which on a side note, I think so many of us have gotten better at. I know for myself, I don't always share the perfect picture, and my captions are relatable in that I want to talk with all of you about what happens in motherhood, life, and our ever day feelings. Sometimes christianity can be an extended version of a perfectly curated feed on the outside, but inside, so many of us are struggling but don't always talk about it for fear of judgement. It's important to lean on God and those around you that are true examples of Him. Those that are there to lift you up and not condemn you. Things like anxiety, fear, and depression are real, and while we know we have eternal hope in our creator, there are moments when struggle becomes a reality. I know for me I experienced some of that when going through everything with C and navigating his cleft journey. But what I've come to realize is, if we shift our focus in those moments to stop beating ourselves up that we might be sinning and having fearful thoughts, and instead, use it as an opportunity to draw closer to Him, we can experience so much more than we're able to on our own. I'm not sure why I went into all of that, but if someone needed to hear this, I hope that it has brought you some encouragement. 

"You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you." Isaiah 26:3

Outdoor Fun:

i mentioned our weather has been really nice, and I say that not to brag, but it has seriously set the whole tone for this week. My kids are happier and more cooperative when the sun is shining, they get outside even more to let out some extra energy, and things are just different. Especially coming off of the winter. It's like a new found hope that we are all excited about.

Travel Posts:

i know a lot of what I've shared lately has been from our travel adventures, but that's a big part of us and we have some exciting things coming up in the next few weeks as well. In case you missed it, I shared more about things to do when visiting San Diego and how to maximize your time in Disneyland. I always find travel guides so helpful and jump on Pinterest before our trips to get an idea of things I might have missed and want to check out.

Grocery Delivery:

i'm still wondering how in the world I didn't realize we had grocery delivery with our prime membership. I mean, it was in the back of my head but I don't think I fully realized how easy it was and that the option was screaming out to me so easily. A friend mentioned how she does grocery delivery about once a month and it has really helped her to manage her time a bit better throughout the week. I decided to give it a try, and was pleasantly surprised. It was at my doorstep within two hours and was exactly as I ordered it. I wish they had a bit more of a selection to choose from, but I know there are also other services or even curbside pickup that I might be considering as well. I hate to err on the side of convenience, but #momlife. Have you tried out grocery delivery?

Favorite Finds:

This section includes affiliates links. Thank you for your continued support and happy shopping. 

after I had a facial with my sister last month, I decided to switch up some of my beauty products to try and add a little more life back into my skin. I'm still working on those fine lines, but for now, I have been liking what I'm seeing. I use this peptide serum both in the morning and at night under my moisturizer. It's light weight, not greasy, and leaves my skin with an extra glow. I have sensitive skin, and so far over the past month, I have not had issues with breaking out. I wanted to try neutrogena's new bright boost cream but I haven't been in love with it. It has a slight scent to it, which doesn't bother me, but I'm not loving the overall moisturizer feel of it. I've substituted and went back to their hydro boost. At night I use an oil-free acne wash and then follow up with the peptide serum and moisturizer. I decided I needed a better primer to wear under my makeup, but was on the fence about a few. I saw a fellow influencer friend do a whole video about how she uses this instant smooth perfecting touch, and well, I was sold. A little of this stuff goes a long way. I really like how it leaves my skin feeling and how it looks under my makeup. It smooths things really well and my makeup looks great throughout the day. 

Some of you might remember when I shared easy ways to refresh your living room. I talked a bit about how pillow covers are a great way to switch things up and use the existing pillows you already have. It's still one of my favorite quick refreshers. And not to mention, they're so much easier to store when you aren't using them then packing away a big bulky pillow. I'm working on some updates to our master bedroom and wanted to add a spring feel to our bed. I got two of these jacquard-weave covers and this fun tassel one. I love how they look on our bed and add to the brightness of our space. I've been big into the tassel trend and also have a bunch in my living room on our couches. They have a lot of great prints and colors to choose from depending on your style.

I hope you have a great weekend!

Things To Do In San Diego

Are you thinking about visiting San Diego? With beautiful beaches, palm tree lined streets, and plenty of sunshine—that alone can keep you occupied. If you're looking to do a bit more on your visit, I'm sharing some of our family's favorite things to do and places to eat while visiting San Diego.  

I can't believe it's been over 15 years since my brother in-law moved to California. I always admire those that can pick up their things, their lives, and make a major move. We've moved around our state before, but have never really done a major move. I'm thankful that we have both Eric's brothers and my brothers in some awesome places to visit. Of course we would selfishly want them all closer to us, but the trips are pretty epic when we all get together. 

When we make a trip to San Diego we have some staples that we try to do every time and also add in some new sights or areas to checkout as well. I recently shared more about our family adventures in California and some of the amazing places we got to explore. Now that our first nephew is out there (gosh I miss that little guy), we're hoping to incorporate more frequent trips. 

One of the great things about San Diego is the scenery and so many things you can do in nature. My family loves being outside and San Diego was the perfect escape for us during the winter. You can visit some major attractions or go on a free hike and feel satisfied depending on your priorities. You can visit the downtown Gaslamp Quarter filled with museums and theaters or hang out in a beach town and feel like you're miles away from it all. Whatever your preference is, I'm highly confident you will find something to enjoy in San Diego.


my family loves to be outside and thankfully are easily occupied. If there are sticks and rocks around, my crew will have the best time (#boymomlife). It can be a bit tricky with kids since there are so many cliffs and areas to be careful around. We look at these moments as a teaching opportunity and a great reminder about safety and staying close. Some of our favorites are Torrey Pines and Sunset Cliffs. You can also enjoy a scenic view from the Mount Soledad Cross. If you're headed downtown a nice place to check out is the Seaport Village filled with shops, plenty of places to eat, entertainment, and seasonal festivals. 


ahhh, southern California's ideal weather and ocean waves that crash along the pacific are something I would imagine I couldn't get board of. We have beaches here on the east coast, but let's face it, the scenery I'm used to seeing is not like how it is in southern California. There are so many great beaches to choose from in San Diego that it's hard to narrow down the best. I think a lot has to do with preference and what you enjoy. Are you looking for the calm and scenery of Torrey Pines State Beach or the feel of a beach town like Mission Beach, Ocean Beach, or Pacific Beach. If white powdery sand is your thing than Coronado Beach might have what you're looking for. You can also head over to the elite shopping and views of the beaches in La Jolla and catch a glimpse of the seals hanging on near the shore. Are you traveling with a pup? There's a beach for that. Dog beach is filled with many furry friends and many of them who will hop on a surf board and go to town.


this iconic park is a major attraction in San Diego. There is so much to see and do. You could spend all day here, make a quick visit, or come back multiple times. It all depends what you want to get out of it. Balboa Park has many different features that make it so special along with the beautiful buildings and well kept grounds. There are 16 different museums, a botanical garden, trails, restaurants, and much more.


the San Diego Zoo is a zoo located inside of Balboa Park.  There are more than 3,500 animals and over 650 species. See what I mean when I say you can spend several days coming back to visit the park? The zoo has so many things to see and explore and my kids love seeing the animals and learning more about them.


if you're into exploring more about marine mammal life, then SeaWorld is a great option to check out. They also have many rides and attractions and of course the shows where you get to see some of your favorite dolphin, seal, and whale friends up close and personal. 


old town has a lot of charm and culture to explore and learn more about. It was California's first settlement in 1769. If you make a visit, you'll see many different vendors and unique shops as you stroll through vibrant colors and historic buildings. There are museums, a theater, and so much more to explore.


there are so many great places to eat in San Diego with a variety of different options. What I can say is, coming from someone on the east coast, I'd probably avoid the pizza and focus on some more coastal food or authentic Mexican. Of course that opinion may vary, but I can get my pizza fix at local places around me, so I like to indulge my senses with other tastes. A very popular spot in San Diego, and for good reason, is OB Noddle House. We go every time we visit, and usually multiple times. Their sizzling fish is so good and you can't go wrong with any of their pho. For some of the best burgers around Hodads is a great option. For brunch we love Voltaire Beach House. If you're looking for some unique and delicious breakfast options, Breakfast Republic is worth checking out. There french toast trio was amazing! If you're looking to have an all out brunch experience and make an event out of it, then I would highly recommend Bali Hai. I would also recommend making reservations to avoid a wait. Their champagne brunch is where it's at. They also have some of the best mai tias I have ever tasted.

No matter what part of San Diego you choose to explore there is so much to love about it and an area for everyone to enjoy. Have you ever been to San Diego? 

How To Get The Most Out Of Your Disneyland Visit

Are you thinking about planning a visit to Disneyland or Disney California Adventure Park? I'm sharing how we got the most out of our visit with some Disneyland tips, tricks, and ideas. 

This post is in collaboration with Disneyland. All opinions remain my own.

Maximizing Your Disneyland Trip
There's something about the word, Disney, that gets me feeling like a little kid again. Some of my favorite memories involve those classic Disney movies and iconic characters. It's been so much fun being able to relive some of those memories, and create new ones, with my own kids.

Our first big Disney adventure took place a few years ago when were still a family of four and had the pleasure of visiting Disney World. It's a trip that even though my boys were younger, my oldest still talks about to this day. Since Disney was such a special visit for us, we knew it was a no brainer to head to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park during our recent California trip.

I wanted to share more about our experience, some tips, tricks, and ideas in case you are thinking about planning a visit. I know that some people will have different opinions on things, which is fine, because everyone's expectations and experiences are different. Some thought we were nuts for only spending a day in the parks, and others cheered us on and encouraged us to make a memorable experience. I think it's about finding out what works best for you and the expectations you have for your visit.


Deciding on the time of year, day of the week, events being held, or holidays approaching, can play a big impact on your trip. While visiting Disney is always a magical time, there are times out of the year where it's notorious for having more visitors. We decided to plan a visit on a weekday knowing that we weren't going for multiple days. This helped us to maximize our time in the parks. I am so happy that we did. It felt like a huge benefit for us because we didn't have to wait longer than 30 minutes for anything that we wanted to go on.


You know what they say, the early bird gets more Disney fun. Ok, ok, that might not be exactly how it goes, but if you play your cards right, it can be relatable. Depending on your tickets, you might have the option to enter into the park an hour early before the general public does. There are certain days this applies to Disneyland Park (Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday). Here's my suggestion, go to the opposite park. Yup, while everyone else is crowding into the park that opened early, head to the opposite one a bit early than the general public (sometimes they allow you in 15-30 minutes ahead of time). We decided to head to Disney California Adventure Park on the morning that Disneyland Park had their early entry, and it was the best idea, ever! We didn't have to wait for much and had some great opportunities to jump from ride to ride. We got this awesome picture in front of the Mickey's Fun Wheel without people walking in front of us or crowding around. This might be one of my favorite family pictures of us!

Where To Take Pictures in Disneyland


Downloading the Disneyland app is a big must. This is a huge life saver and essential for helping to maximize your trip. You can do everything from buying park tickets, seeing wait times, and also using your MaxPass. It's also instrumental in reserving your spot in the queue for certain Star Wars attractions.


If you don't purchase your tickets through the Disneyland app, I would highly suggest saving time and buying them online. You have access to viewing the calendar to take advantage of seeing the ticket prices based on the day you decide to go. It also saves a ton of time from having to wait in line and get everything situated once you get to the park.


At first we weren't sure if we were going to be able to feel like we saw enough of each park and considered focusing on just one. Whatever you decide is best for your visit is completely up to you. I will say, we are so happy we decided take advantage of both parks, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park. We loved both of them for different reasons and each of them had something special and unique to offer. In fact, we started our day at Disney California Adventure Park and then made our way over to Disneyland Park. Then after the light show at the castle, we made our way back to Disney California Adventure Park for World of Color. Oh yes, we hopped around.


I mean, who doesn't love cutting down on any type of wait time? That's what a FASTPASS will afford you. FASTPASSES are not eligible on all rides, but they are available on majority of the popular rides. Most of them you need to find the FASTPASS machines located around the general area of the rides to insert your ticket. Once you insert your ticket, a reminder will print out for you with a designated window for you to use your FASTPASS. You can bypass going to the machines with you purchase the MaxPass, which I'll cover next.

Here are the attractions that the FASTPASSES are currently eligible for.

Disneyland Park
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster
Haunted Mansion
Haunted Mansion Holiday
Indiana Jones™Adventure
"it's a small world"
"it's a small world" Holiday
Matterhorn Bobsleds
Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin
Space Mountain
Splash Mountain 
Star Tours-The Adventures Continue

Disney California Adventure Park
Goofy's Sky School
Grizzly River Run
Guardians of the Galaxy-Mission: BREAKOUT!
Guardians of the Galaxy-Monsters After Dark
Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue!
Radiator Springs Racers
Soarin' Around the World
Toy Story Midway Mania!
World of Color

It's strongly advised to check the FASTPASS availability on the app for the day you are visiting as some of the popular attractions have limited availability and FASTPASSES are not guaranteed.


Ok, that might be a confusing statement if you aren't familiar with how all of these passes work. I'll try to break it down for you. If you really, really, want to maximize your day spent at the parks MaxPass is an option. It comes at a price of $20 a person, per day. 

Here are the benefits to purchasing a MaxPass. It combines the ability to make FASTPASS selections from your phone along with unlimited access to Disney PhotoPass. To break it down even more, let's say you are in Disneyland Park but want to select a FASTPASS for Radiator Springs Racers (great ride by the way!), if you do not have a MaxPass, you would need to walk all the way over to Disney California Adventure Park to the area where that FASTPASS machine is. So really, what's MaxPass all about? Convenience and time saving.

Disney Pixar Pier


I love that Disney tries to make going on rides as inclusive as they can for everyone. It's going to be a surreal day when all of my kids are able to go on any ride with us. Right now we have A being able to ride on most things, little nugget still having some restrictions, and the baby, well he goes on what he can. Which I will say, was a great amount of things at both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park.

So what's a parent or friend to do when you both want to go on but can't ride together? You take advantage of a rider switch. You let the attendant know you are going on but your other counterpart will be going on after you. They scan your ticket and allow you to jump back into a less crowded line and be able to enjoy the ride. We did this with several things and it worked out great. A was able to ride twice on some rides, once with and Eric and then again with myself. Or A went on with me and then little nugget went on with Eric. Everyone was happy and it all worked out. Some rides also have single rider lines where you can bypass a lot of the waiting time if someone is going by themselves. 


Another great thing about downloading the Disney mobile app is that it will indicate where the characters are in the park and at what time. You can select from the drop down menu, characters, and have all of that available to you. At times you will see characters walking around throughout the park. That was my kids favorite part. We'd take a bathroom break and all the sudden see them walking around. They'd run up for a quick hug or high five and be on their way. But, if you'd like to get a  specific photo, or a more one on one experience with them, this is a great option. You can also book things like character dining experiences to mingle with them.


I love that you are able to bring in your own snacks and water into the parks. With kids, it's almost impossible not to do so. You will still want to get some amazing Disney food and treats, but let's face it, when our kids want snacks, they want snacks right then and there. Coming prepared with some of their favorites and plenty of water to hydrate is so important. 


Speaking of food, I also love that you can order food through the Disneyland mobile order service which will cut down on wait times. Another great advantage to saving time. You just walk up to the mobile order window, and pick up your food. You can take advantage of this at many restaurants inside both Disneyland Parks as well as the Disneyland Hotel.

Disney Beignets


I'm sure it will be almost inevitable that your little ones, or even you, will want to bring something nostalgic home from your Disney visit. My suggest is to save that for the end. You don't wan to have to walk around lugging extra things or run the risk of your little one setting their prize possession down somewhere and losing it in the park. It also worked out for us, because our little ones were on their best behavior knowing they were working towards achieving something at the end.


This probably goes without saying, but I can always appreciate when someone gives me a simple reminder that might spark something I didn't think of. If you haven't already figured it out, you're going to be doing a lot of walking. My number one thing is to make sure you and the rest of your party wears comfortable shoes. We also packed a few bandaids incase anyone got a blister or those mysterious ouchies occurred that need a bandaid right away. You all know the ones I'm talking about, right? It will also depend on the time of year that you go, but wearing layers may be helpful. It was beautiful during the day for us, but when the sun went down, we did put on some sweatshirts. 

If you have little ones, a stroller is essential along with a baby carrier if that's how you like to tote them around. We mentioned snacks and water, but since it's usually about the snacks with my crew, I figured it couldn't hurt to mention it again. 

Other suggestions would be to bring your camera (or you can opt out if you're doing the Disney PhotoPass), phones, chargers (especially if you're using the app, your phone will need some extra juice) sunscreen, hats, a backpack, and a notebook and pen if you want any character autographs.


I know that some will want to accomplish absolutely everything in one day, in reality, I don't know that that's possible. I would encourage you to keep an open mind and know that if you are going with little ones things can be unpredictable (as I'm sure you already know). You can't control the weather, crowds, wait times, or any situation that is out of your control. Creating amazing experiences and having a wonderful time is absolutely doable in a day. Try your best to focus on having fun and creating the best memories with your family, even if things don't go as planned. 

Happy Disney adventures and I hope you found this information to be helpful! 

Favorites From Our Cali Trip

Happy Friday, friends! I hope it's been a great week for you. We are just back from our sunny California trip and I'm already missing that warmer weather and beautiful scenery. We've had a pretty mild winter, for the most part, but there is something so special about visiting a warmer place and being able to escape the cold for a bit. I have some fun posts coming up about our time in Disneyland, some of my favorite things to do in San Diego, and also essentials when traveling with children. If there's anything specific you'd like me to focus on in any of them, you can send me an email or drop it in the comments. Since we took advantage of exploring several different areas in the golden state, I figured I would highlight them here. 

Let's get to those favorites...


surprise, surprise! Ahh the beach. If you're newer around here, then you will quickly learn the beach is our happy place. We have big hopeful dreams of owning a beach house and possibly even living bi-coastal one day. It's nice to dream, hope, and pray. We'll see what happens later on down the road. We had the chance to visit beaches in both Newport and San Diego and I love them both for different reasons. Let me put it this way, as long as my boys are near the water, they're happy. What I also really loved about this trip was the refreshing feeling of slowing down, relaxing, and living in the moment. After all, isn't that what vacationing is all about?


the focus of our trip was to spend time with family, and aside from all the other fun we had, that's exactly what we did. Eric is one of three boys, and his two brothers live in San Diego. I mean, I can't really complain because his brothers are in Cali and now two of my brothers are in Florida, so we have some pretty awesome spots to visit. One of my brother in-laws had their first baby two months ago and we were all sooooo excited to meet him! You guys, I'm now an Aunt! Oh that little squish was giving me all the baby feels. He is just so precious and it was hard leaving him. I'm the oldest of five, and my husband is one of three, so we have a larger family between the two of us, and someone, finally someone else had a baby! We are so happy for our boys to have a cousin and how cool it's another little dude. Yup, the boys run strong in our families. My boys are obsessed with their uncles and love being with them. The memories they created were so special.


talk about opposites here. We had the chance to lay seaside and then drive about 2 hours (without traffic that is) and head to the desert. Joshua Tree has become a trendy and popular place to visit so of course visiting was no exception for us. The fun part about Joshua Tree is, my brother in-law has 15 acres there that he is in the works of developing a really cool structure for. We're excited to come back out and see the progress and eventually spend even more time there. We've driven through the desert from Las Vegas to Cali, but it was dark and I really didn't get a chance to take it all in. Wow, Joshua Tree was so cool and also met a lot of my stereotype ideas I had in my mind. It was certainly interesting to see the locals that live there full time, the stores that are around, and the feeling of kind if being in the mild of nowhere. There are a lot of dirt roads, cactus and joshua trees everywhere, and some of the biggest tumbleweeds I have ever seen! 

If you tuned into my stories (always a huge thank you for checking out our crazy) then you might have seen A drew an adorable little map and took me on a treasure hunt, the boys found some "treasures", and even the shell of a snake egg. They found a desert chinchilla (not sure if that's really a thing but that's what they were calling it), we heard coyotes howling at dusk, saw jackrabbits darting out, and caught a beautiful sunset that pictures don't even give it justice. 



i shared last week that we got to celebrate Valentine's Day at one of the most magical places around. We all had such a great time and got to do so many things while we were there. It felt like it was such a successful trip and we've been reminiscing about so many memories for our visit. A missed out on being able to ride the incredicoaster by two inches so he's already talking about going on it the next time we go back and all the fun things we did ride on.


there is so much to do in southern california that it feels impossible to be board. Between our afternoons on the beach, eating at local restaurants, shopping, and exploring the parks, we took it all in. I'm happy to say there were very minimal tantrums (I can think of two, and for a 9 day trip i'd say that's a huge win) and a lot more smiles than anything else.

I hope everyone has a great weekend! 
Copyright © Beautifully Candid 2017. All Rights Reserved. Powered by Blogger.