How to Style a Beanie

How to Style a Beanie + some of my favorites

Not all that long ago I had never worn a beanie, which is shocking now considering I practically live in one. I always loved how they looked but was certain I couldn’t pull one off and I had no idea how to wear or style one. I mentioned to my friend Jesi that I wished I could pull off a beanie like she does (she is the QUEEN of beanies) and she said “you totally can!” Then she put it one my head and in two seconds flat had it styled to perfection. I bought it on the spot and it is still my favorite beanie even though I’ve since bought like ten more. My mom bun has been replaced with my “mom beanie.” They are cute, warm, and cover a multitude of dirty hair days. I’m now a firm believer in the beanie and think that everyone can pull them off with a couple of tips.

  1. Give your hair some texture. If you are lucky enough to have thick hair naturally, you might not need to do this. I have really fine hair, so mine needs some help. I usually do a quick wave job by alternating pieces and waving with my curing iron (nothing fancy – I swear by this one).
  2. Flip your head over, give it a toss, and flip it back. Pull your hair around to the front of your shoulders. Now it is time to put on your beanie.
  3. Put a hand on each side of your beanie with it pointing toward the ground, head opening facing up. Make sure it is turned where the front of the beanie is closest to your body. Slightly stretch the opening. Put it on! (If any of you would like a video tutorial, let me know. It seems simple enough but I know reading instructions is often not as helpful as seeing it done.)

How to Style a Beanie + some of my favorites How to Style a Beanie + some of my favorites How to Style a Beanie + some of my favorites

How you wear your beanie is mostly personal preference. It also changes depending on the style of your beanie and the shape and size of your head. I prefer mine to look casual but not be too hipster (I’m really not cool enough to pull off the hanging off my head look). Above are a few ways I wear mine depending on whether I’m wearing it to actually keep warm or to cover dirty hair. Sometimes I cuff it, sometimes I leave it unrolled. I also have a larger forehead (or fivehead as my husband lovingly calls it) so I tend to wear mine a little more forward because I just feel more comfortable and less ‘foreheady.’

If you want to try a beanie, some of my favorite ones are pictured above, and sourced below:

  1. Gigi Pip (both taupe/beige beanies pictured)
  2. Krochet Kids
  3. Old Navy (the ivory fur pom one, the green marled one and the black one – the black one is actually a men’s beanie! None are currently available)
  4. Funky Junque on Amazon (not pictured but super cute and lots of color options!)
  5. Under Armour (not typically a bit UA fan but these are warm and cute!)
  6. Gap

How to Style a Beanie + some of my favorites

Are you a beanie lover? Do you have a favorite? Or do you have another favorite winter accessory staple? Winter survival and bad hair day survival tips are always welcome 🙂

{Outfit sources} Top photo: Sweater / Middle photo: camel sweater, bag, boots, jeans / Bottom photo: sweater

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Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Easy Paleo Chili Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GiantEagleDelivers #CollectiveBias

Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad

I used to be so overwhelmed by the idea of cooking family dinners every day (or even 4-5 days a week). The planning, the shopping, the getting to the store, the thawing of the meat in time to cook it, the veggie prep — it was all too much for me to wrap my head around while working from home and caring for three young kids. But we are getting serious about eating whole foods and staying on budget, and both require some planning and meal prep at home. In order to save my own sanity I’ve figured out a few things that have completely changed the way I approach the family meal and have simplified mealtime for me.

Some of my mom hacks for simplifying family mealtime are:

  • An Instant Pot or high pressure cooker. If you don’t have one or have been on the fence about whether you need one (“I already have a slow cooker, do I really need a pressure cooker too?”) the answer is: YES. Yes, you do. I have this Instant Pot, so I can only speak to that one but it can cook just about anything easily and quickly. You can put meat, poultry, fish, and veggies in frozen and still have your meal cooked within 20-30 minutes for most things. And the meat is tender, juicy, and way more delicious than oven-baked (especially chicken and pork!) I cannot believe I didn’t get one sooner. I’m completely addicted and reliant upon mine and use it daily. It has also helped me to eat much healthier because instead of eating out or just making a lunch of my kids’ leftovers, I can cook myself a piece of fish or a chicken breast in no time.
  • Buying organic veggies that are already chopped and frozen. If I’m making something relatively easy, like rainbow carrots or something I like to eat in a specific way, like spaghetti squash or sweet potatoes, then I buy them fresh. But when it comes to peas, cauliflower or broccoli, green beans, any diced or chopped vegetables like onions, or a mirepoix for soup — I buy them already chopped and frozen. Not only is this often cheaper, but it saves so much time and food prep and they are frozen when they are at their freshest and the nutrients are at their highest. Plus, there is less food waste because you aren’t forgetting about them and letting them spoil. My local Giant Eagle has a wide variety of chopped organic frozen veggies in the freezer section.

Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad

  • Giant Eagle Curbside Express Delivery. With Curbside Express, I can shop online when and how I want without sacrificing my time or having to drag my three wild boys to the store with me (ugh, no thanks!). You can link your Advantage Card to earn points with your orders and also to save your shopping history, which is great if you tend to meal prep and stick to the same purchases and staple items each time you shop. It is basically a virtual grocery list! You can click a box that says whether or not your personal shopper can substitute an item if the one you ordered isn’t available and you can write a note to your shopper specifying any specific things you want them to know about your items. For example, my family goes through a TON of bananas, so I like to order a lot at once. But I write a note stating to “pick half ripe/yellow bananas (but not brown) and half green/unripe bananas.” I also request that they ensure the fresh strawberries I order are organic and free of mold. And I’m happy to report they followed my notes exactly. I even got a call from my personal shopper because I requested “grass-fed ground beef” but the brand I ordered doesn’t have a grass-fed option. So she called to clarify if I preferred grass-fed from another brand and to tell me that it was actually on sale! I was also able to add almond butter to my order after I placed it, since I forgot to include it in my original order. I selected a delivery time that worked for me and my groceries were delivered while my little ones napped. And you can try it for free — they waive the delivery fee for your first service! And a funny bonus that I never would have thought of: I actually spent less on groceries because I wasn’t in the store personally to make any spontaneous, impulse purchases. I cannot recommend the Giant Eagle Curbside Express Delivery service enough!

One other tip that helps me is to keep a list of meals that are healthy, yummy, and easy. I have about 14 meals on a list so if I get stuck or need an idea I refer to that (and I keep it on a dry erase board like this on my pantry door). I don’t meal plan per se, because when I did I found it very limiting and it almost felt like a chore. But when I can choose from 3-4 meal ideas that we have ingredients for at home and make a game time decision thanks to my mom meal hacks above, I find that I enjoy preparing the meals and don’t get bored with eating them. I plan to share more full recipes of some of my favorites, but a few ideas are: huevos rancheros, fish tacos, meatloaf muffins, spaghetti squash with meat sauce, flank steak and roasted veggies, bacon and egg cups, balsamic chicken over cauliflower rice, and chorizo mash and scrambled eggs.

I wanted to demonstrate how these three things make cooking dinner so much easier, so I’m sharing a recipe for the Paleo Chili that I made and had prepared within an hour after receiving my Giant Eagle grocery delivery. My items were delivered at 3:00 pm and I had dinner ready by 4 (I made it a little earlier than usual so that I could take a few photos while we still had some daylight. The recipe below is for a Paleo Chili (also Whole30 Friendly because I’m in the last week of a Whole30 now myself) but you could always add dark red kidney beans, shredded cheese, sour cream, or corn bread muffins or any other toppings you like if you aren’t adhering to a Paleo or Whole30 way of clean eating. Also, if you don’t have an Instant Pot but have more time to prep your chili, you could cook it in a heavy bottom pan like a Dutch Oven, a stock pot, or even your slow cooker. Just be sure to allow yourself more time!

Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad

Paleo Chili

Ingredients 

  • 2 lbs grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 tbsp avocado or olive oil or ghee
  • 1 large (28 oz) can of tomato sauce (make sure there is no sugar added in the list of ingredients)
  • 1 regular can of diced tomatoes (14.5 oz)
  • 1 can or jar of tomato paste (I used a 7 oz jar)
  • 1 16 oz bag of frozen peppers and onions
  • 3 tbsp of chili powder
  • 1 tbsp of cumin
  • 1 tbsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp of fresh ground peper
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional, but adds a slight cheesy type texture that I miss when I can’t add shredded cheese)
  • 1 avocado for topping (optional but delicious)
  • 1 can of organic dark red kidney beans if you aren’t following a paleo or Whole30 eating plan

Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad

Instructions

  1. Press the sauté button on your Instant Pot and let it heat up. Then add your 1 tbsp of oil or ghee and swirl to coat the bottom of the pot.
  2. Once simmering, add peppers and onions to the oil. Stirring frequently, cook 2-4 minutes or until soft.
  3. Stir in tomato paste, garlic powder and sea salt.
  4. Add in your ground beef. Brown the meat and break it up with a wooden spatula as you go (especially if you are putting it in frozen – I also like to put the lid on the Instant Pot and let the meat thaw faster).
  5. Once your meat is browned, add in the cumin, cinnamon, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, ground pepper, and nutritional yeast (optional).
  6. Mix well, put lid on pot and lock it, and press the chili button and set for 20 minutes.
  7. Once chili is done, you can release the pressure, ladle into bowls, top with the diced avocado (or whatever toppings you like), let cool a bit, and serve. My whole family — even my picky eaters — gobble this right up! This recipe yields a large batch so we have plenty of leftovers for lunches and another dinner or freeze for future meals.

Simplifying Mealtime + A Quick and Delicious Paleo Chili recipe #gianteagledelivers #ad

There you have it! My favorite tips for simplifying family mealtime and a quick and delicious family-friendly recipe using all of those tips. Thank goodness for pressure cookers, frozen vegetables, and especially Giant Eagle Curbside Express Delivery! Have you tried it yourself? Do you have any other meal simplifying tips to share? I hope you enjoy the time and sanity you’ll save by using the Giant Eagle Curbside Express Delivery service. Less time shopping means more time for cooking. Or better yet, relaxing!

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If You Only Buy One Winter Coat Ever, It Should Be This One

I've discovered the warmest and coziest winter coat ever and you need to get one too!

After moving from Los Angeles to Columbus, Ohio (where we are experiencing one of the coldest and snowiest winters in many years — of course) I’ve been on a quest to find the perfect winter coat. My criteria: it has to be warm, comfortable, long, stylish, and under $100. It was a really hard to meet all of those, but I finally found the holy grail of winter coats! I posted a photo on Instagram last week and so many people DM’d me asking where it was from, so it only confirmed my feelings that this coat deserved a blog post all its own.

I've discovered the warmest and coziest winter coat ever and you need to get one too! I've discovered the warmest and coziest winter coat ever and you need to get one too!

The coat feels like you’re wearing a down comforter, in the best possible way. It is a slightly heavier weight but I love how that feels on a cold day. It has a TON of zipper pockets and the sides unzip up to make it bigger on the sides so that it can fit over bulkier sweaters or layers. It has a hood, which you can sort of turn inside out to make it a warm layer right behind your neck if you don’t need to wear the hood (I’m usually wearing a beanie), and it is long enough to keep your bottom half warmer too. I got the olive color — which I love — but it also comes in grey, beige, and black. And it is lined in an orange fabric, giving a cute pop of color in the lining. I would call this wind proof and since I’ve had it I’ve not been cold (and also don’t get overheated, which I tend to do when I have to wear warm layers in the winter).

I've discovered the warmest and coziest winter coat ever and you need to get one too!

So, if you are in the market for a warm and cute winter coat, I highly recommend this one! We could be twins 🙂

Also, check out this post for my favorite winter wardrobe essentials for kiddos.

Outfit sources: Coat // Vegan Leather Leggings // Boots

This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and buy the product, I may receive a small commission at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting the content I bring you here on Oh Lovely Day.

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It’s Ok To Take Shortcuts in Parenthood

This shop/post has been compensated by Collective Bias, INC. and The Coca-Cola Company, all opinions are mine alone. #FreshEatsPizzaDeal #CollectiveBias

ways to make mom life easier.7Whew, is it just me or is this a crazy busy time of year? I always think things will slow down in the winter and I can go into hibernation mode a little bit, but with the holidays and a constant slew of sick kids in our house it never seems to slow down. This year I’m trying to give myself a bit more grace, accept help when offered, and allow myself shortcuts without feeling guilty. I try to cook healthy meals at home as often as I can. But I’m also realistic about my limitations, my tendency to get overwhelmed when things get hectic (like during the holidays), and my need to simplify when things get crazy. After three kids and 7+ years of motherhood I’ve finally come to the realization that it is ok to take shortcuts in parenthood, and to accept help and cut myself a break when I need it.

ways to make mom life easier.7 ways to make mom life easier.7

Some ways I take shortcuts in parenthood are by hiring a housekeeper to do my deep cleaning when I can no longer keep up, having a sitter come one morning a week so I can run errands or do work kid-free, and I do takeout pizza night once a week. Bonus points if all of those things happen in one day and I get to come home after a morning out kid-free to a clean house and don’t have to cook that night! Sounds like the best day ever. And none of those things make me less of a mother. In fact, they make me a better mother because I’m less stressed, have more patience, and have more time to enjoy my family. A clean kitchen + pizza I didn’t have to cook = a beautiful thing.

ways to make mom life easier.7

The main reason we don’t often do takeout is that it can really do a number on our family food budget, especially when you are feeding a family of five. So when I find a good meal deal, I get pretty stoked. If your family loves a pizza night as much as mine does, and if you are on a budget, then I have to share a great deal that will be available at your local Fresh Eats store next week. Get a fresh, hot ready-to-eat large one topping pizza and 2-liter Coca-Cola™ beverage for $5 at your local Fresh Eats Market! I placed my order at the Fresh Kitchen order screen, got a receipt, and shopped for some produce in the market while I waited for the pizza to be ready. Then I checked out and paid for everything in one spot. And I just picked up my 2 liter of Coca-Cola from the soda aisle and it was included in the deal. Mom shortcut, for the win (and a super affordable one at that!)

ways to make mom life easier.7 ways to make mom life easier.7
ways to make mom life easier.7

Do you have any regular mom shortcuts that save your sanity? Share your ideas and hacks and sanity savers in the comments — I can always use more ideas! And don’t forget to visit your Fresh Eats store to make your life a little less complicated and save some money!

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Because Moms Don’t Get Sick Days

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc., Campbell’s® , Lipton, Premium Crackers, Theraflu and TYLENOL®. All opinions are mine alone. #SickDaySolutions #CollectiveBias

Because Moms Don't Get Sick Days #sickdaysolutions

We’ve all been there: sick as a dog, needing to rest, so badly wishing we had someone to take care of us but instead we have our own children to care for, and desperate for a sick day. I’ve had it happen three times this fall alone, and one day I called an audible and begged my mom to drive the two hour distance from her house to mine to help — and she did! We’re lucky we are now close enough to have that option. But sometimes we don’t have help and we can’t take a sick day and we just have to push through that bug that we’ve caught (probably from our sweet and loving children who are human petri dishes and generously bring home every germ possible). On those days, I’m glad I have a stockpile of ways to fight colds and the flu, and a Kroger just down the street so I can easily replenish my stock when needed. Here’s how to create your own “sick day kit” to get you and your family back on their feet in no time.

Because Moms Don't Get Sick Days #sickdaysolutions

These are some of my favorite things to have on hand and are always on my grocery list when I run out:

  • TYLENOL® Cold + Flu Severe Day/Night: This is my go-to for cough, congestion, sore throat, aches, and fever. I love that there is treatment for both daytime or nighttime, so I don’t get drowsy during the day but I can sleep better at night. And I trust it because it is the #1 doctor recommended pain relief brand.
  • Theraflu ExpressMax Severe Cold & Flu: This is powerful relief without a prescription, and it is great for helping to defeat 7 cold & flu symptoms fast, like sore throat, nasal congestion, chest congestion, fever, cough, headache, and body aches.
  • Campbell’s® Soup and Premium Saltine Crackers: For generations moms have turned to Campbell’s® Condensed Soup to soothe and comfort, whether it be due to cold weather or colds and flu. My mom made it for me, and I make it for my children. And Premium Saltine Crackers are always the perfect soup or chili pairing. But when I’m sick, I always long for the same things my mom made for me: chicken noodle soup and saltine crackers 🙂 That is why I keep some on hand to make for myself when I’m down with a cold or the flu.
  • Lipton Daily Support Tea: When I’m sick, a cup of tea feels like the best thing in the world. The Lipton Daily Support Tea is an excellent source of Vitamin C. This herbal infusion can help boost your body’s natural defenses against germs, plus it features turmeric, echinacea and ginger — all of which are good for you.

If you want to find any of these products for yourself, I found mine at my local Kroger store. The Tylenol and Theraflu products are found in the cold and flu/pain relief aisle near the pharmacy. The Campbell’s Soups are in the soup aisle, of course and the Premium crackers are in the cracker aisle. Lipton teas are in the tea and coffee aisle.

Put all of your food and beverage supplies in a designated area of your pantry, so you can find them when you need them. Do the same with your medicine — keep the cold and flu medicine separate and where you can find it quickly and easily. If you don’t have a hall closet or bathroom cabinet where you can store supplies (out of the reach of kiddos, of course) then consider making a “sick basket” with all of your supplies and keep it somewhere you can find it all when needed.

Because Moms Don't Get Sick Days #sickdaysolutions

Be sure to go here to find more inspiring content on prepping for germ season. There’s also savings on these products. What are your tried and true cold and flu fighters? Do you have something you like to use in your family that your parents gave you as a kid?

Campbell’s® – © 2018 CSC LP Lipton – © 2018 Unilever Theraflu – Read and follow label directions. Theraflu is for use in adults 12 years and older. Use products only as directed. TYLENOL® – ®Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. 2017. Use products only as directed. The makers of TYLENOL® remind you to use only one medicine with acetaminophen at a time.

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Winter Wardrobe Staples for Kids

winter wardrobe essentials for kidsNow that we’ve been officially hazed into our first real winter, I’ve already found some winter wardrobe essentials for the kids that are helping us to survive, stay warm, and have fun in the snow and cold weather. Since we still have a couple months of winter to go, I thought I would share some of the things we’re finding to be super helpful in this extremely cold weather! Read More