6 Gift Ideas for Practical Moms

Practical Mom Gifts
My close friends and family will tell you that I am a huge pain in the butt to shop for because I'm kind of a minimalist. I like stuff, don't get me wrong, but a gift has to meet a certain set of criteria in order for me to really put it to use in my life. I need items that are quality and that serve a purpose. With four kids, our home is simply too busy for stuff that breaks or adds clutter!

5 Fundamentals for Authentic Travel Blogging

Creating content for travel brands as an influencer.
Last year I wrote a post offering some insights into the difficulties of blogging as a career, and a TON of people asked me to share more about the industry. That's a little ironic since my post pretty much boiled down to me being burned out on the internet noise. Go figure. That was almost a year now, and I still get people asking for my ideas about blogging. I've found ways to be more efficient with my time, scheduling things out and being extremely focused in my efforts, and I'm not quite as overwhelmed. So I guess now is as good a time as ever to kick off a series sharing thoughts on balancing work and biz.

Spring Fashion Fling: California Casual

Spring Fling Shoot
Every spring, we do a photoshoot of the boys together. We take individual shots throughout the year, of course, but it's kind of unusual for us to have all the kids coiffed and napped and fed and in non-meltdown mode at once. And simultaneously wearing pants. So we don't get sibling pics as often as we'd like, but come April it's a...

My Wife’s $400 Hair Dryer was Totally Worth It

$400 hairdryer | dyson | beauty | hair styling | beauty tips
I should probably preface this post by saying that I am, in fact, a bald man with no use for a hairdryer. And when my wife told me she wanted to spend $400 on one, I insisted that she was on crack. But then, our sponsor Best Buy offered to send us the Dyson Supersonic hairdryer to review. The very one my...

A Purple Peacock Wedding at Leo Carrillo

Casual mason jar flowers at an outdoor wedding
I was at the most awesome wedding recently. The colors were purple and cream and there were peacocks everywhere. It was held at Leo Carrillo Ranch in Carlsbad, a park that serves as a historic preservation center, lush public garden with walking trails and - yes - home to dozens of peacocks. When I say this was "recent," I should probably clarify that...

Bonaparte’s Wi-Fi Solution

A Wi-Fi solution for when the whole family's streaming at once.
The holidays are upon us and that means relatives. It means movies cuddled up by the fire. Unfortunately, it also still means work. The world has changed in so many ways since I was kid, yet it’s still the same old game. We strive to be welcoming hosts who put our guests at ease but it seems no matter how much...

Feeling Beautiful in the Third Trimester

Comfy clothes and a few purse essentials keep me feeling comfy and beautiful in the third trimester!
We are well into the third trimester with baby number four (due in just five or six weeks) and this time around I've been working extremely hard on self-care and self-respect. None of my pregnancies are what you'd describe as "easy," but this one's definitely done a number on my body and I've noticed myself slipping into habits of nitpicking everything...

What it looks like to Work from Home on your Dream Gig

What it looks like to work from home on your dream gig.
When people find out I work from home, they frequently ask how I manage it all. Incredulous responses vary from "I'd never want to be isolated, I need the office interaction!" to "How on earth do you keep the kids from interrupting?" The truth is that at-home work can look like so many things. It's totally different for every influencer...

Night Zoo and Happy Hour

Activities at the San Diego Night Zoo
The San Diego Zoo is easily among our top ten list of regular outings. We've paid for the annual membership for a couple years in a row. It's an absolute steal if your family wants to get out on a regular basis but do something a bit more educational than some of the theme park options in our area. And there...

7 Motivational Audiobooks for Moms

7 best motivational audiobooks for moms (get organized and find inspiration when you feel totally overwhelmed by the mundane)
So many of my friends are becoming parents right now, and I'm thrilled that I can share a little bit of knowledge with them - including my favorite motivational audiobooks! I always offer new moms and dads some essential baby tips and bedtime tricks, of course, but the most important message for parents is that they shouldn't forget about themselves. Every new mom slips into a bit of...