Guest Room: Midnight Snack Basket

How many times have you spent the night at someone else’s house, only to have a snack craving after your host has already gone to bed? Unless your host is your own mom or you haven’t eaten in three days, you’re probably not going to sneak into the kitchen and rummage through the pantry. But any guest who stays at MY house doesn’t have to sneak around, because I put snacks in their room for them!

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It’s important to me that people feel comfortable at my house, whether they come visit for an hour or stay for a couple of days, and giving them a great place to sleep is a big part of that. Even when Daniel and I were newly married and living in a tiny apartment, I dreamed of having an inviting, cozy guest bedroom for guests to use. I inherited my love of hosting people in my home from my mother, and I hope that someday I’m as great of a host as she is!

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If you have a guest room and want to really kick it up a notch, making a snack basket is a super easy way to start. I just try to cover the basics and think about what kinds of things people might forget or want when they aren’t staying in their own home. Your options are virtually limitless, and you can change it up throughout the year too! Here’s a short list of what I typically try to keep in mine:

Magazine
Lotion
Hand sanitizer
Anti-wrinkle spray
Chapstick
Bottled water
Snacks
Gum or mints

I also have a little basket of toiletries in the bathroom! Again, I just stick with the basics: toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, and face wash.

This isn’t an expensive project, but it can have a big impact. With just a little bit of effort, you can make your guests feel extra special when they stay with you!

What little details make you feel taken care of when you’re a guest in someone else’s home?

What It’s Like to Be 28 + 30 By 30 Update

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Y’all should know by now that I LOVVVVVVVVVVVVE my birthday. Always have and probably always will. But two years ago, when I turned 26, I had a weird moment. Literally, that picture at the top of this post could not be more real. 25 was my golden birthday – turned 25 on the 25th – and I felt soooo adult-y and grown-up. And then I turned 26 and was like, “Hold up…”

28 wasn’t intimidating until I remembered that my mom had me when she was 28. When Daniel and I got married, I was 22, and I never felt in a hurry to have kids because my parents were 28 and 30, and they did just fine. But I also didn’t expect to be married for 6 years and still not have kids, and as my birthday approached, I couldn’t stop the flood of thoughts:

I’m about to be the age my mom was when she had me. And I’m the oldest kid. I better get a move on; I can’t have my first kid when I’m 30. And what in the heck am I doing with my life?? I’m almost out of my 20’s and haven’t I cured cancer or created a new social media site yet. Everyone else is doing super important things with their life and yesterday I tried to get out of my car with my seat belt still on. *sigh*

All things considered, though, my birthday was actually AMAZING. My husband woke me up with breakfast in bed and some wonderful birthday gifts, we went to lunch with a group of friends from church and did a little shopping, and then celebrated with friends, pizza, cake, champagne, games, and a movie night at our house that night. It didn’t have to be anything extravagant or expensive – just knowing that Daniel planned everything in advance made me feel very loved. ♥

I also wanted to take a second to fill you in on my 30 By 30 progress, since I brought it up – so here’s a few things I’ve accomplished since my last update!

30 By 30 Update

#5. Throw someone a surprise party.
I actually did this twice last fall – a Stranger Things party for Jeremy, and a 13 Going on 30 party for Courtnie!

#15. Take Fitz on a trip.
Fitz goes to Thackerville with us all the time, but he also took a little vacation to meet up with a female German shepherd named Scarlett…! Haha. Things apparently went well, because Scarlett had a bunch of super cute puppies.

#17. Make a map of places we’ve visited.
When we went to Colorado with my family last summer, I found the perfect thing in one of the shops in downtown Silverton – a tea towel with a giant map of the United States on it, with all the states outlined. I’ve started coloring in each state we’ve visited with a Sharpie.

#27. Go on a fancy dress-up date.
We got to do this in Vegas for the MONAT gala. I just love dressing up!

I also finished another book (The Meaning of Marriage) and traveled to another state (Nevada). I never would have guessed when I created my list that I’d go to so many new states so quickly. My goal in 2016 was to visit five new states by February 2020, and I visited four in 2017 alone!!

What’s coming up in 2018? Nothing definite yet, but hoping to check #13, #19, and #26 off the list. What do you have planned this year?

Ahoy, It’s a Boy!

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I had so much fun throwing this sweet beach-themed baby shower for my sister-in-law, Hannah! I can’t take credit for the theme idea (that was all Baily), but I CAN take credit for the more-time-consuming-than-I-expected crepe paper wall. ;)

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The decorations were honestly pretty easy, aside from the time it took to tape up the crepe paper. I used several blue fabric tablecloths and a gauzy sheer curtain, made some balloon bubbles, and topped the table with driftwood, coral, a DIY treasure chest, and some shells. I also repurposed some decorations I already had, including my blue mason jars, letter board, and branches. (Pro tip: if you host a lot of parties, or want to in the future, start stockpiling pieces that you know you’ll use over and over again!)

As far as food goes, this was the most low-maintenance party food ever – next to no food prep! All we had to do was slice up the cucumbers and tie the Twizzlers into knots. The complete menu consisted of:

Life Preservers (donuts)
Flying Fish (goldfish crackers)
Sea Cucumbers
Crab Legs (carrot sticks)
Pirate Knots (Twizzlers)

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I loved watching the kids get in on the snack action too! Lots of sticky fingers and happy frosting mouths. :)

Sweet mama Hannah and some of her sisters. ♥ It was so funny – after I took this picture and looked at it to make sure everyone was smiling, I said, “Hannah, you barely even look pregnant in this picture!” Most pregnant women probably would have been happy to hear that, but Hannah’s face fell and she said, “Oh no, let me turn sideways!!” It made us laugh!

To everyone’s surprise, baby Luke decided to come a few weeks early! Thankfully, he has been a super healthy, super chill baby, which is exactly what Hannah needed. He looks so much like his brother to me, and I’m already obsessed with him. Being an aunt is pretty great!

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If you need help planning a party, let ya girl know – I’d love to get ice cream or coffee with you sometime and talk about your vision!