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Our Favorite Holiday Tradition: Gaylord Opryland Staycation

Our Favorite Holiday Tradition: Gaylord Opryland Staycation

Our absolute favorite family holiday tradition is our annual staycation at the Gaylord Opryland hotel. The hotel truly feels magical during the holidays and there are tons of festive activities for the whole family.

There are both indoor and outdoor activities. Inside the hotel there are elaborate light displays and decorations. You can stroll around to view them by foot or you can take the Delta boat ride which is always a hit with the kids!

There are tons of restaurant options inside as well. We like to have one really nice dinner at the Old Hickory Steakhouse. It is the most formal option, but feels very special at the holiday time. Cascades restaurant is near the waterfalls and that is a great spot for kids. We always do the breakfast buffet at Cascades as well.

Inside there is also a scavenger hunt and gingerbread house making. The boys have always LOVED the scavenger hunt and it’s a great way for them to burn some energy as well. Gingerbread house making is always a hit as well.

Outdoors is transported into a winter wonderland. There’s ice skating, tubing, bumper cars, snow balls, live holiday music and festive drinks. There’s also ICE! exhibit/experience. This year it’s Rudolph themed. Such a fun thing to put on the parkas and check out the millions of pounds of ice sculptures. At the of ICE! there’s a giant slide.

Between the tubing and the ICE! slide the boys had to have gone down them at least 100 times. So much!

Each of the activities you can purchase independently, but I’d recommend grabbing a holiday package.

Another tip for a really magical stay is to snag an Atrium room. It’s so peaceful at night to sit on the balcony and watch all of the sparkling lights. We grab a hot chocolate and sit out there and just listen to the music and watch the lights.

Anytime my kids are asked about what they want for Christmas, their favorite Christmas traditions, their favorite vacation, etc. they always say it’s Opryland. We have created some of the most precious memories there over the years. Hoping you can check it out with your family and feel that same magic we have come to cherish.

Lifestyle

2022 Holiday Gift Guides

** Click on any image to check out the product. These are affiliate links- when you shop through them I receive a very small commission at no cost to you. It comes directly from the retailer. I appreciate you shopping through me SO very much. Hope you have a great holiday season and find the perfect gift for your loved one.. or yourself! **

Lifestyle

Baby Jogger City Bistro & City Sway- Best Baby Item Find This Nordstrom Sale

Baby Jogger City Bistro & City Sway- Best Baby Item Find This Nordstrom Sale

* This post has been sponsored in partnership with Baby Jogger. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. *

The Nordstrom Sale is quickly approaching and it’s something that I look forward to each year. It falls on my birthday week and I always treat myself to a little sale shopping to celebrate! Don’t worry, I always do the heavy lifting for you and sift through each and every page to find the best deals that are worth checking out!

This year, with our baby girl’s arrival landing right along with the sale, I put a heavy focus on baby finds.

My favorite find this year is by Baby Jogger. They have the City Bistro and City Sway combo as part of the sale. You can check it out HERE.

Baby Jogger thought of everything when it came to the City Bistro. I love that it breaks down and can be stored away at 80% smaller than when it is unfolded! We can fit it in our pantry while not being used. It’s not clunky or awkward to fold down and up either. It’s a two step fold and extremely convenient.

With this being our third baby I’ve learned how messy feeding time can really be. Cleaning is easy with this one because it has stain-resistant and machine washable fabrics. The tray insert is also dishwasher-safe.

We have also learned this third time around that you don’t want more baby items than you really need. Products that grow as the baby grows are key to save you both money and space. This highchair has four different height positions to do just that.

Travel is still a big part of our lives, even during the baby stage, so the City Sway is something I’m super excited about this time around. We did not have this with the boys and it would have come in SO handy!

The City Sway is a really lightweight (under 9 pounds) 2-in-1 rocker and bouncer. It folds completely flat and comes with a storage bag. If you have a small space or a frequent traveler this one is PERFECT. Like the City Bistro, it is made with stain-resistant and machine-washable removable fabrics.

There is a removable toy bar, battery-powered 2 speed vibration, 3 position adjustable recline and has adjustable calf support.

Having a newborn in this southern heat is no joke so I really appreciated that it features a plush infant insert featuring OptiVent™ fabrics allows your baby to stay cool and comfortable.
I was so excited to get my hands on these two items and share them with you. The convenience and usability are top notch.

Be sure to stay tuned as I continue to share more Nordstrom Sale finds throughout the week. Happy Shopping!

Lifestyle

Newborn Cart Essentials

newborn essentials cart

Newborn Cart Essentials

** Click on any of the below images to shop. **

This is the best hack for new mamas to keep newborn life a little easier and more organized-
a newborn essentials cart that can be wheeled around the house and you can visually see when any items need to be re-stocked.

I like to separate each tier by category, but you can organize however best works for you. The diapering tier I also use a diaper caddy. It’s easier to just take that out for diaper changes and you don’t need to move the entire cart.

Mine is organized like this:

Tier 1: Diapering
– Diapers
– Wipes
– Diaper Rash Cream
– Changing Pad
( I also out a tray with a bunch of pacis on this top tier.)

Tier 2: Feeding
– Breast Pump
– Haaka
– Nursing Pads
– Extra Nursing Bras
– Burp Cloths

Tier 3: Sleep
– Swaddles
– Extra Night Clothes (My favorite are gowns at night for easy access to diaper changes- we absolutely love this brand for gowns, easy access sleepers and sleep sacks. SO soft and well made. )

This would be the absolute best baby shower gift. Several people could go in together to stock a mama up on all the essentials and make her life easier!

Hope this is as helpful for your family as it has been for ours!

Lifestyle

What I Am Packing In My Hospital Bag- From A 3rd Time Mama

hospital bag

What I Am Packing In My Hospital Bag- From A 3rd Time Mama

I will preface this post by saying you don’t NEED to bring anything (other than a car seat to be allowed to leave.) Everything you need as far as postpartum care supplies, diapers/wipes for baby, etc. are all provided by the hospital. Most of these items are for your (and babies/significant others) comfort. You could wear the hospital gown and baby the blankets from the hospital and be totally fine.

As a third time mama I’ve realized that you just don’t need as much as you think! With my first I brought all of the postpartum supplies… I will not be doing that this time. Be sure to have some ready at home, but it’s just easier to not bring all of that.

A lot of the hospital rooms don’t have a ton of extra room. So having a bunch of extra stuff can make the space feel too crowded. A tip with this is also the car seat. Leave it in the car until you are about to leave. Your significant other can run out and get it then. It takes up too much space in the room otherwise.

FOR BABY

I love these little newborn hats that look similar to the hospital version, but with a bow. They come in several color options. I ordered the white for baby girl and it’s adorable and super affordable!

FOR DAD

Keeping it simple for Trey this time too. He made sure to have loaded movies/shows on his computer so we could watch them and a good playlist ready on his phone too. You could add a little speaker if you wanted to, but we never used it the last couple times.

hospital bag

FOR MAMA

Keep in mind that some of these items are personal preference of what will keep you comfortable.
For example, if you need a sound machine to fall asleep then pack that! Some women really love a handheld fan, etc. I personally try to keep mine pretty minimal. With George I completely overpacked and never pulled out 75% of the items that I brought.

hospital bag

Lifestyle

George’s Star Wars Themed Birthday Party

star wars birthday party

George’s Star Wars Themed Birthday Party

Gone are the days when I can pick the themes of my kid’s birthday parties. George is completely Star Wars obsessed and requested a party to match that. We typically like to do “experiences” over parties, but this year we decided to do both. He was so excited to scroll through Pinterest with me and come up with ideas for his party.

I’ve gathered up everything we used to pull this off so you can easily re-create.

Vender List:

Balloons: Cavender & Co

White Bounce House: Vlance House Nashville

Cake: Copper & Whisk

Light Up 6: Alpha Lit Nashville

Lifestyle

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

mother's day gift guide

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Personalized Bum Bag- You can emboss initials on to this bag. Comes in different colors as well. This has the same size and look as the Louis Vuitton version, but is affordable!

Comfy PJ Set– This is on my wish list this year as it will be perfect for postpartum days. They come in several color options and have great reviews.

Luxe Robe- You can’t go wrong with a super comfy robe!

Chill Pill Bath Bombs- These smell and feel amazing. They often run out of stock (because they are amazing!) but are currently in stock.

Five-Minute Journal- A great way to start your day with gratitude. As moms, we hold everything and everything together and this helps start your day in a calm/positive way.

Instant Camera- Such a fun gift idea to capture sweet memories.

Rose Candle- A splurge candle, but it can fill an entire large room. I love taking a bath and lighting one of these for a very luxe experience.

Custom Mug- This company also makes custom tumblers and several other items. Is cute as a grandparent gift. You can customize with any photo and name combo.

Mama Pouch- This comes in a matching “baby” and they have a “mrs” version as well. Perfect for trips or to throw in a purse.

Dried Florals- These are beautiful and dried. Love taking the dried route so they can last for much longer than normal flowers.

Tiger Sweatshirt- A splurge, but my most worn item. An easy “mom uniform.” Comes in a t-shirt variation as well.

mother's day gift guide

If you are looking for a really special fine jewelry piece.. I absolutely adore these custom pieces by a small, family owned Nashville business. They were so kind to give a code for 15% off. Add “ASHLEY” at checkout. These are the kinds of pieces you will have and love forever. You can check them out HERE.

Lifestyle

Stoney Clover X Target Collection

stoney clover for target

Stoney Clover X Target Collection

I absolutely adore Stoney Clover and all of their personalized pouches, totes, duffles, etc. We have many pieces and they’ve been so great. However, they are $$. So the fact that they are doing an extremely affordable line for Target is just SO EXCITING. The patches sell separately from the other pieces and you can add them on yourself to customize.

This line will sell out like hot cakes so I wanted to be sure to round up my favorites so you could add them to a wish list and then quickly add to cart when it goes live April 2nd.

Patches:

Lifestyle

Reader Favorite Baby Finds- The Top Recommended Baby Items

top rec baby items

Reader Favorite Baby Finds- The Top Recommended Baby Items

With this being baby #3 I have learned that you simply don’t need as much as you think you do. However, there are just some things that make life easier with a new baby and are worth the $$.

We have several items that I saved from George and Wilder, but the baby world is a quick moving one and there were tons of new items to hit the market since my last baby. After reaching out on Instagram, the moms really pulled through and flooded my DM’s with hundreds of recommendations. (Both good and bad.)

Having this resource has been SO helpful and I wanted to extend that to any other new mamas. I was able to get a good list going of what I plan to purchase over the next few months for the baby. I’ve rounded up the most requested items below.

– SO many of you suggested this little gadget (Amazon find.) I will say I did NOT love clipping my other two nails with a baby nail clippers so this was a quick add to cart for me!

Breathable Crip Mattress- This is something that was not on the market yet when I had my other children. I LOVE the concept behind this and can see why it would give parents some ease of mind with their baby.. we will be grabbing this one for sure.

Water Wipes- Hypoallergenic, clean and unscented.

Bouncer- Comes in several color options. So many of you swore by this one!

Infant Lounger- This version came recommended by far more people than the Dockatot.

Bassinet- Apparently this is similar to the Snoo at a FRACTION of the price.

Sound Machine-– This one doubles as a night light.

Haaka- One of the overall most recommended items. It’s $12 on Amazon, but breastfeeding mamas swear by it.

Baby Brezza- The Keurig of bottle making. Super convenient!

Baby Carrier- This came in several color options as well and is under $100.

Owlet Sleep Sock- Apparently they have made several changes in the newer versions and it is much better than previous/older versions.

Car Seat/Stroller- Lots of doona lovers out there. Anything to make traveling around with baby easier sounds good in my book.

Uppababy Stroller- The Vista has several configurations for multiple children. We have (and love) this for the boys, but I’ll be purchasing the board to make it suitable for three children.

Lifestyle

Valentine’s Day Gift Guides

valentine's gift guides

Valentine’s Day Gift Guides

Valentine’s Day has always been one of my favorite

If you are looking for more Valentine’s Day inspiration…check out this blog post HERE. with how to make a dessert board. It’s always the biggest hit!