Lately…

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I’ve noticed a strange phenomenon since having a baby… Before I had Andrew, my DSLR was constantly out. I was taking pictures every time we went anywhere.

Now that I have a diaper bag filled with tons of crap, plus my purse, plus a heavy baby, the last thing I want to do most of the time is carry around a heavy, breakable camera.

So my iPhone has taken up the slack. I think I have more photos of Andrew on my iPhone than anywhere else.

Here’s a snapshot of what we’ve been up to lately. Most of these photos are from Instagram, so if you don’t follow me already, head over there! I post tons of photos of the Little Dude.

What have you been up to lately?

{DFW Mom} Back to School with the Westin Galleria Dallas

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Can you believe it’s almost August? Back to School is right around the corner.

While I’m not yet with you parents who have to go crazy with Back to School shopping, I remember how involved our Back to School shopping trip was every year with my mom. She had her work cut out for her.

So why not make the Back to School shopping experience a little vacation this year?

The Westin Galleria Dallas has partnered with Galleria Dallas for a Shop and Stay Package where you can meet all of your back to school needs in one setting and enjoy a night away at The Westin Galleria Dallas!

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  • The first package is $550 and includes deluxe accommodations at The Westin Galleria Dallas for one night, a $500 gift card to Galleria Dallas and overnight valet parking with unlimited in and out privileges.
  • The second package is $1,000 and includes deluxe accommodations at The Westin Galleria Dallas for one night, a $1,000 gift card to Galleria Dallas and overnight valet parking with unlimited in and out privileges.
  • Upgrades to the Westin Galleria’s executive club level are also available for an additional $100 per night.

Both packages are available on Friday and Saturday nights, and each package is based on space availability and single or double occupancy. The packages can be purchased through August 26.

If you were already planning to spend that kind of money on clothes for Back to School, why not get an awesome vacation out of it, too?

The Westin Galleria Dallas is located at 13340 Dallas Parkway, Dallas, Texas 75240. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit http://www.thewestingalleriadallas.com or call 1-866-716-8137.

 

Disclaimer: Photos and information provided by Westin Galleria Dallas. Opinions are my own.

 

Splashin'

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Last weekend, we took Andrew swimming in our neighborhood pool.

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He really loved playing in the baby splash pool.

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River and Eli came and played with us.

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The kids had a lot of fun.

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I think we may have a fish on our hands.

Andrew's Star Wars Nursery

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I’ve mentioned a few times that we decided to go with a Star Wars theme for Andrew’s nursery.

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I’m really excited to share with you the finalized version and how it turned out!

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No nursery is complete without a chair to rock and feed the baby.

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I had to add this throw pillow from Pottery Barn to accent the theme.

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Here’s the other side of the nursery, with the changing table and one side of the crib. We went with a dark blue, white and light blue color scheme.

I really love these Baby Star Wars prints that I ordered off Etsy.

I hand painted the shelves and added some letters from Hobby Lobby to spell out his name. We also added a frame with one of the ultrasound pictures.

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The vinyl letter decal above the crib is one of my favorite parts of the nursery.

This Star Wars baby blanket was my inspiration for the nursery.

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Andrew’s bookshelf features an eclectic mix of Star Wars items, from the Darth Vader Build-a-Bear (a gift from Aunt Morgan), to the How to Speak Wookiee book.

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One of my favorite features in the nursery is the collage of Wookiee the Chew images from James Hance.

I really love the one of Wookiee the Chew with the Storm Trooper helmet above the bookshelf.

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I think we were able to pull together a cute baby boy nursery that wasn’t too over-the-top.

Here’s a list of where we got all the different items:

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Andrew really loves his nursery.

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After all, two Yodas are better than one, right?

{DFW Mom} Taste of Dallas

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This weekend, we were invited to experience The Sweet Factory at Taste of Dallas.

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It was a great family event featuring lots of yummy food and fun activities for the kids.

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River and Eli enjoyed playing in the bouncy houses and visiting the petting zoo. We even got the kids’ faces painted!

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But the highlight of the event was meeting Curious George! Andrew was SO EXCITED to meet his favorite cartoon character. We’ve watched many episodes of George’s escapades.

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River met George too.

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But Eli didn’t trust him.

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River really enjoyed visiting the butterfly house.

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The butterflies seemed to like Andrew.

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But he was more interested in my camera.

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Eli couldn’t get any to come to him, though.

We had so much fun. Did you attend Taste of Dallas this weekend?

Disclaimer: I was provided with tickets at no charge to attend Taste of Dallas. We also received some samples and products to try.

{DFW Mom} Peter Pan from Dallas Summer Musicals

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There’s something you don’t know about The Nerd.

My man LOVES him some Broadway musicals. One of the first times I ever rode with him in his car, he belted out the lyrics to songs from Wicked.

He even refused to go to my brother’s wedding because he had tickets the same night to Monty Python’s Spamalot. Yeah, try explaining to your family that your new boyfriend preferred to watch singing men in tights instead of meeting them. Fun.

But you know what? We’ve never seen a musical together.

Until last night.

We were invited by Dallas Summer Musicals to attend Opening Night of Peter Pan.

To say that we enjoyed the show would be an understatement.

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The set was gorgeous. And set changes were seamless.

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Cathy Rigby was fantastic as Peter Pan. She flew around the stage, sprinkling silver fairy dust in her wake. Her aerobatics were incredible and it seemed like she was born to fly.

Tiger Lily was gorgeous and an amazing dancer. The scenes with her tribe were some of my favorite parts of the show.

But the highlight of the night was Captain Hook and his band of pirates. He was hilarious and the perfect character. I have never seen Hook played like that before. And it was marvelous.

For more info on the show, check out the Red Carpet Premiere:

Peter Pan At Dallas Summer Musicals from Dallas Summer Musicals on Vimeo.

You can see Peter Pan at the Music Hall at Fair Park from July 10-22. Get more info on tickets here.

Also, be sure to check out the amazing line-up of shows to come at Dallas Summer Musicals! Do you think I should take The Nerd to see Wicked?

The best thing about this show is that is perfect for a family night out. It made a great date night with my hubby, but I would have had just as much fun with my niece and nephew.

In fact, my friend Jennifer brought her daughter to see the show and my friend Meagan brought her son, Andrew.

There aren’t many musicals I’d feel comfortable bringing a child to see, but this is definitely one of them.

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It was be the perfect getaway on a summer night.

 

Disclaimer: I was provided with two tickets to see Peter Pan to promote and review the show. All opinions are my own.

 

 

Pretzel Hot Dogs

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I’m feeling very patriotic today. And not just because it’s the Fourth of July.

You see, pretzels and hot dogs make me think of baseball. And baseball makes me think of the Texas Rangers. And the Texas Rangers make me think of red, white and blue. I mean, what’s more American than pretzels, hot dogs and baseball?

Nothing, I tell you.

So because it’s Independence Day, I thought I’d share this yummy recipe with you. It combines two of the three things that make America so great, and you can’t be that.

Pretzel Hot Dogs
Source: Joy the Baker

Ingredients:
8 hot dogs, cut in half
1 1/2 c warm water
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 pkg active dry yeast
4 1/2 c all-purpose flour
2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter, melted and cooled
8 c water
1/2 c baking soda
1 large egg, beaten, with splash of water
Ground sea salt and black pepper for topping

Directions:

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine warm water and sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top and set aside for five minutes. It will begin to froth and bubble.

Turn the mixer on low and add the salt, flour and butter (Don’t be a dweeb like me and almost forget to add the butter). Mix until well combined. Increase to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. It will begin to form a ball around the dough hook. Knead for four more minutes.

Remove the dough from the bowl and wash it to remove any residue. Coat the bowl with oil and return the dough to it. Sprinkle a bit of flour on top of the dough and cover with saran wrap. Place in a warm area and let it rise for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Once the dough has risen, cut it into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a thin rope about 12 inches long. Wrap the rope of dough around one of the hot dog halves, making sure to seal the ends. Press the layers of dough together so that there are no spaces. You want it completely sealed.

Repeat with all pieces of dough and hot dogs.

Boil the water and baking soda. Add the pretzel dogs a few at a time, boiling each for 30 seconds. Remove with a flat, slotted spatula and place on a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper.

If they become unraveled in the boiling water, just press them back together. I promise it’s fine.

Brush tops of the pretzel dogs with egg mixture. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top.

Bake 14-18 minutes until golden brown. Remove and place on a drying rack. Serve warm.

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Enjoy!

What are you doing to celebrate today?

 

Get Ready for the 4th With DIY Sparkler Holders

DIY Star Sparkler Holder

 

And don’t miss these yummy patriotic recipes!

Star-Spangled Sugar Cookies Sparkler Cupcakes Fruit-Infused Ice Cubes Patriotic Pies Pretzel Hot Dogs Firecracker Popcorn Image Map

Star-Spangled Sugar Cookies | Sparkler Cupcakes | Fruit-Infused Ice Cubes
Patriotic Pies in a Jar | Pretzel Hot Dogs | Firecracker Popcorn

 



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