Simple Moments v.II

agoldenafternoon-9School is here again!  As much as summer was especially AMAZING for me, I know that life needs the routines of the every day.  Summer wouldn’t be a gift, though, if it wasn’t a deliberate break from the ordinary, right?  It was indeed appreciated.

Homeschooling friends, have you signed up for the free Wild & Free content bundle?  There are so many inspiring homeschool mamas sharing their wisdom and stories in there!  The first PRAIRIE bundle is free, then you just pay $19/month after that to keep the content flowing!  This next month you can find ME, in the GARDEN edition, sharing a fresh tomato risotto recipe and tips on how to cook with kiddos. Go and sign up here!

This last week brought some simple moments I wanted to remember:

// The boys made wooden boats.  I LOVE that they are old enough to go in the backyard and build something from their imagination,using a hammer and nails. //

// Getting back in the granola game with my old favorites, pecan and vanilla.  I posted the recipe here this week. //

// Jack was so sad it was summer because he missed doing math.  Go figure. //

// Math-u-see blocks are part of every school day, but seeing the manipulative picture below makes me think of these wooden math blocks I just saw on Etsy here. //

// FINALLY got my vintage 5-panel door hung up in the kid’s bathroom!  Praise the Lord for finding a handyman and progress! Now, to find the piece that makes the fabulous glass handle turn.  I think my littlest guy ran off with it somewhere. Ruh roh. //

//I attempted to help my extremely tactile kiddo with letter writing by breaking out the shaving cream option.  Quite simply, it didn’t go as well as I’d like, but it did create 30 minutes of bath-time fun for the boys. //

// Every kid loves the time of year when costume magazines come nearly daily. Not sure whether to thank them for the few quiet minutes it allows or shake my fists for the junk mail. //

// Snap-circuits are amazing.  I’ve been storing them away until school started.  Have you tried them?!  The instructions are easy for the kids to follow and they love the fact that they can make an electrical circuit that creates explosive noises. //

// Peach roses forever. //

// Ice cream in a can doesn’t work with regular goat’s milk,  FYI.  Fat is necessary so cream is the only way.  Guess I’ll have to go out of my way for some raw cream so I can have some. San Diego, you can find raw milk options from Organic Pastures at some Sprouts and the little Boney’s Bayside Market on Coronado. La Mesa Sprouts is the only one I’ve actually seen it at. //

// I’ve been taking a lot of clay and salt baths lately, trying to get rid of some yuck stuck in my body during the gut healing I’ve been undergoing.  The happy effect of this is I’ve been getting some reading done. Any good books you think I can’t live without reading? //

// Experimenting with some new board balm options.  Coconut oil seems to be the only option that brings the least amount of rancid effects.  Mineral oil is a spawn of plastic so it’s weird that people think it’s cool to put it so near their food. I’ve been using a coconut oil and beeswax combo.  So far so good.  There’s a convo happening on my IG about this here. //

// Filling our pantry shelves with as much homemade canned tomato sauce as possible before the season is gone. I started with is Better Homes and Gardens recipe here, I just added the roasting element and kicked up the garlic. //

// The blessings of a backyard sunset. //


Click below to follow us on:

F a c e b o o k  //  T w i t t e r  //  P i n t e r e s t  //  I n s t a g r a m  //  E m a i l

Pecan and Vanilla Bean Granola

Processed with VSCOcam with s2 presetI love the flexibility of summer which allows us to go where we want or stay put if we desire to put up our feet a little longer.  I’ve loved the healing and purposeful rest that I was able to experience this summer.  The last few years have been rough on my body.  The rest was necessary and appreciated.  Now that Fall is only a few weeks away, I am ready to embrace this new season, where relaxation gives way to routine and pattern.  For me, the routine brings some of my favorite weekly food preparations.  Inspired by the Kinfolk Cookbook, this week I chose to get back in the granola game…

Pecan & Vanilla Bean Granola

3 cups oats 1 cup pecans (or any nut)

1/2 cup unsweetened coconut, shredded

1/2 cup flax seeds

1/3 cup maple syrup

1/3 cup melted ghee or coconut oil

1/4 cup orange juice

2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract

Preheat oven to 300. Combine all ingredients and spread on a baking sheet lines with parchment. Bake and stir every 15 minutes until the granola feels dry, about 45 minutes. Cool and enjoy!

(Adapted from the Kinfolk cookbook)

How to Watch Downton Abbey Season 5 episodes in the U.S./America/UK!

watchdowntonabbeyseason5inusTHIS METHOD WORKED FOR SEASON 4!!!

Hi Downton Abbey Fans!

Season 5 is almost here!

I know everyone is excited about the new season (hopefully) starting September 21, 2014 at 9pm in the UK! Hopefully this season is filled with less sadness, no death, and lots of romance!

Thanks so much for sticking with me these last few years for season 3 and season 4.   I have already been receiving SO many emails and messages from you guys anticipating Season 5.  For each of these seasons, I have done no more than provide a place where you can find all of the links in one location.  The videos are not hosted by my blog and I have no control over them.  I am happy to help with whatever I can.  I plan to post the links again on my facebook page as well as some Downton inspired recipes and cocktails on Instagram!

ANYWAY, you guys really just want to know how to watch, right?

**PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE be patient with each option.  Not every option will work for every person simply because of your specific computer/setup.  Try each option more than once until you find one that works!  Please test the Tunnelbear option before Downton premiere Day**

How to watch in the U.S. (5 options!):

Option 1:

This option includes any extra videos and behind the scenes option on ITV!

Here’s what you need to do to get Downton Abbey to play on your PC:

1. Download Tunnel Bear here for free. You will need to pay the $4.99/month to get enough data for the season unless you follow their system of tweeting for more free data storage .  No biggie in the long run to pay for a few months! Tunnel Bear is a VPN (Virtual Private Network) which is changing your IP address to reflect that of the UK.  Think of it as a giant antenna that reaches across the globe.  Technology is amazing, right?

2. Confirm Tunnel Bear by e-mail.

3. Once you are signed in to Tunnel Bear, turn the knob you see to “on”.  It will say “connected”.

4. Now, set the country option to “United Kingdom”.  Your computer will now be compatible with the region showing Downton Abbey. Yay!

5. Go to

You’ll need a postal code to access the ITV player on the website. I used the code “HP5 2US”  Use any of the ones on this list.  If one doesn’t work, try another.

6.  To watch the shows that have already aired Season 5 episodes, go to the ITV website’s Downton Abbey page:

To watch the show live as it airs in the UK at 1pm Pacific Standard Time, go here to watch the live streaming ITV player:

6. Make sure you turn Tunnel Bear to “off” when not watching Downton as you want your computer to know which country it is really in. :)

7.  Hopefully, you’re smiling and watching Downton!  If not, “like” and check my facebook page here for loads of questions answered, as well as the comments below.

Option 2:

Watch by clicking below in the questionably legal way click here from Watch TV Series.  When you click the link, don’t click the play triangle in the middle of the player screen. Simply close the “x” symbol and click the play button on the bottom of the player, right below the window you view the show in. If it’s asking you to set up an account, close the window and start over (you’ve clicked through to an ad). Enjoy and please SHARE!:


Option 3:

Some previous links are/will be available from the ITV website but you obviously have to have the ability to watch the player using options 1 or 2 above or clicking here:

Downton Abbey  iTV Player

Option 4:

Download this ITV player automator here.  I tried it and it worked.

In the meantime…

Get excited!

Support your local PBS station here in the U.S. who provides shows like Downton.

Share your favorite characters and scenes in the comments below!! What’s going to happen?!

Amazon has all three previous seasons on Instant Video so catch up on Season 1, Season 2, Season 3, and Season 4 here.

Watch the trailer for Season 5 here.

Check out this post sharing some new characters for this season!

If you decide to wait for the PBS U.S. air date, have fun waiting until:

January 4th, 2015 !!! Crazy!

For more of my own Downton Abbey-era blog posts, read below!  See you back soon!  Sorry for the excessive exclamation marks. I’m excited.


Follow my INSTAGRAM for updates and Downton era inspired recipes and cocktails!

Click on the above image  to like my FACEBOOK PAGE so you can get the updates for NEW episodes and follow the

Downton Abbey Pinterest board!!

Also, check out my other Downton Abbey related  posts:

Stick around and find us on:

F a c e b o o k  //  T w i t t e r  //  P i n t e r e s t  //  I n s t a g r a m  //  E m a i l

Make: Upcycled & Personalized Glass Water Bottle


agoldenafternoon-2I am always a fan of a practical project that replaces an expensive purchase.  Everyone loves to save some money, right?  Since we switched completely over to glass storage from plastic a while back, I immediately got slammed with the price-tag of the fancy glass water bottles.  Don’t get me wrong, I really really love our fancy glass water bottles.  They are pretty and useful.  However, I have only brought myself to buy one for each of us because they are $25-$30!!!  So, naturally, I decided to make my own.  The kids have taken them to soccer practice, in the car, and anywhere else you would take a plastic water bottle…without the waste.

You will need:

  • glass water bottle(s) (I upcycled old kombucha bottles)
  • permanent vinyl adhesive ( I got mine here)

agoldenafternoon-6Choose your vinyl sheet color and arrange it on the Cricut mat as shown above.  Load the file from my project in the Cricut design space or create your own text. For the “drink me” bottle, I chose the size of 5 and the “courier new” font in the design space.  I positioned the text starting at the 1 inch mark from the top and side markings.  Hit “GO”.  Position the “light” cutting mat in your explore and hold it level until it loads (If you don’t hold the mat level, it won’t load correctly and will cut part of your mat).  Follow the rest of the instructions until your project is cut. Now, cut off the part of your vinyl sheet that has the text, saving the remainder for another project.  Carefully place the letters along the length of the glass bottle.  You can adhere a straight piece of vinyl or use a piece of paper to line your letters up more evenly. Done!

So easy you could make it right now! ;)  You will want to make 10 and it makes sense as long a you have the vinyl and your Cricut is fired up!  Share with friends, make them for your kid’s practices or team, or anything else you think up!

Obligatory disclaimer:  I am participating in a Cricut Design Challenge.  All project ideas and opinions are all MINE!  Thanks for for supporting my endeavors.


Click below to follow us on:

F a c e b o o k  //  T w i t t e r  //  P i n t e r e s t  //  I n s t a g r a m  //  E m a i l

Back to School Style: Tea Collection

agoldenafternoon-35Fall loves to wave its little arms at us, waiting for us to finally walk up and enjoy what it has to offer.  We love Summer and cling to all of its sunshine-y bits of watermelon and pool time.  Alas, here we are again, getting ready for school.  It feels good to see some organization on the horizon and with that comes newness.  New routine.  New plans.  New clothes!  I usually use Fall as a time to stock up on what I’ll need for the next 6 months.  For me, that definitely includes SOCKS and also a shipment from my favorite kid’s clothing company, Tea Collection!

Before Tea and I started partnering together, I was already a customer.  I like to make that really clear to friends and readers because it’s important to me.  No matter what you may see other websites doing, I’ve always made it a point to only partner with companies I already love or would shop from, handmade businesses, or companies who stand for things that are important to myself and the bigger world out there.  I get sponsorship offers regularly and I rarely said yes.  I say this all so that you guys know I only recommend that which I would use myself.  As it should be, right?

I LOVE this company as seen here, here, here, and here.  My kids are an accidental Tea commercial.

My favorite things about their clothes:

  • EASY to mix and match pieces.  Kids can dress themselves!
  • soft cotton that doesn’t wear down after a few washes (No thanks, Target)
  • durable boy’s pants.  I have 2 pairs that have officially gone a year without holes in the knees.  Now that i think about it, I have yet to have any of their boy’s pants get holes in the knees. (!!!)
  • fun and inspiring prints that I love looking at everyday.  The latest collection is designed after Germany’s Bauhaus movement.  Love!
  • age appropriate girl’s dresses that don’t have plunging necklines
  • durable leggings for girls.  Target may have them cheaper, but literally…they are cheaper in the falling apart way too!
  • BEST shoe options have included the awesome Tiger, Saltwater, and Vans.  Keep your eye out for sales!  My boys have the Tiger shoes and I love the style!
  • They sell Hershel backpacks which my kids use to carry our nature guides and snacks for hiking days.

I can’t recommend these clothes enough!  Beyond the clothes, Tea’s owner and founder is a lovely and graceful woman who finds inspiration around the globe for Tea’s prints and styles.  She had a fabulous vision for her company that she followed through on.  Now, you can spot a Tea wrap style dress walking down the street and know who had that vision for our little ones.  Thank you, Emily!

My kids love helping to choose their clothes and take more ownership over getting dressed on time when they do! Totally goes with the “Be bold. Be you.” philosophy of Tea!

Here is what my kids picked out from the newest Bauhaus Shop (which includes lots of chambray, BTW):

For Faith…

Lyrical Shape Dress

Alster Floral Skirted Dress

Clotilde Chambray Vest

Skinny Minny Ponte Pants (color coal)

For the Boys..

Weimar Plaid Shirt

Klaus Raglan Sleeve Henley (color Med Heather Gray)

Ostsee Chambray Shirt

Slim Twill Cargo Pants (colors forest and woodland)

Lukas Pullover Sweatshirt  (color indigo)

Take my advice as a Mom and CHECK OUT their SALE!!!

agoldenafternoon-31agoldenafternoon-10agoldenafternoon-17agoldenafternoon-2-2agoldenafternoon-16agoldenafternoon-20agoldenafternoon-19agoldenafternoon-21agoldenafternoon-25agoldenafternoonagoldenafternoon-4agoldenafternoon-5It’s gonna be a great school-year!  This summer has brought much needed rest and recuperation.  I’m excited to become their teacher again, even though that job never really stops, does it? ;)

I am so thankful to Tea for sponsoring this post, although all of these enthusiastic opinions are my own.


Click below to follow us on:

F a c e b o o k  //  T w i t t e r  //  P i n t e r e s t  //  I n s t a g r a m  //  E m a i l

Page 4 of 53« First...23456...102030...Last »