Birthday Wish List | 2016

It's almost that time of year again...halfway across the year from Christmas.  JULY.  My birthday month!

While I have a short list of things I'll ask for my birthday (mostly from my husband), here's my actual  full wish-list (like a shooting for the stars wish list) I'm sharing with you today.  I usually keep a "secret" Pinterest board with things I'm either saving up for or have on my wish-list...I also keep an Amazon wish list.  If you also do something similar, it's good to let those sit for a while to make sure you do actually want to pull the trigger on them, rather than just an impulse buy.  Does anyone else do this?  Writing it out makes me feel reeeeaaaaaaalllly materialistic.  But hey, birthdays only come once a year, right?

So without further ado...My 2016 Birthday Wishlist!

^^^ Aren't these just fabulous!?!  You probably have seen them on Instagram with all their witty posts.  Make sure to check out Letterfolk! ^^^

^^^ Loving this bar necklace from Handstamped Gold ^^^

^^^ I have some knock-off Birks I got from Target last year that I really liked...but quality doesn't last that long with those.  AND, I'm needing some better support.  So Birkenstocks it is. ^^^

^^^ If you follow my Instagram account, I often mention how great I am about killing plants.  BUT, I've turned over a new leaf. (pun intended)  I've managed to keep a succulent, a fiddle leaf fig, and a plumeria alive for over a month, so I'm thinking I might have the hang of it...maybe. Pressing my luck, I'm wanting to get a snake plant for the house too! ^^^
^^^ Too many times lately, I've wished I had a waterproof camera, namely a Go Pro.  We've been in the water LOTS this summer so far, and I hate to risk my own camera or phone to get the good video! ^^^

^^^ And again on the outdoor activities, this HydroFlask I've had my eye on for a while.  I've heard they're the bomb dot com on keeping drink COLD for the longest time! ^^^

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Build-A-Bear | Our First Experience

Ever since Bennett's pre-school took a field trip to Build-A-Bear, that's all he's talked about wanting for his birthday.  So last weekend, we finally made the trip up to the mall in Austin to get his his gift.  I was certain he'd pick out a Star Wars character, but his short-list included Minions and dogs...go figure.  If you follow me on Snapchat (@kristennjansen), I shared how I almost walked out of the store during the loooooooong deciding process (eye-roll).  Thankfully (and predictably) though, he settled on Chewbacca as his new furry bestie.

We were the only ones in the store, so he got undivided attention from the sweet lady working there.  Having never gone through this before, I was touched at how precious the process is...from kissing the heart, to deciding what "huggable level" to be, to brushing and washing his new friend.  We loved it and he thought it was just the coolest!

Our oldest is now saving up her money to go back and get herself a special Build-A-Bear friend.  I guess I had in my mind it was something stressful, busy, and only bear-centric...but in reality, it was a wonderfully uplifting experience that "bonds" kids with their special stuffed animals.  Definitely two thumbs up!

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Texas Beach Vacation - A Family Tradition

We took our annual Jansen Family beach trip a couple of weekends ago and had a blast!  Each year, Blake's parents treat us to several days down at Port Aransas with the entire extended family.  Lots of fun, sun, and kids!  This year, the beach was really nice and clean...which for Texas beaches can go either way from year to year or month to month.  You never know what you're going to get, so this was a blessing to have such nice conditions.

We also celebrated Bennett's birthday while down there.  He requested a red and blue Star Wars cake, and we got exactly that!!!!  It was so yummy and perfect!  We opened gifts and celebrated with pretty much whatever he wanted to do that day...which was stay in the condo and watch T.V.  Ha!!!!

He requested a Minion BOB from Build-A-Bear for his actual gift, so we have yet to make the trip up to the mall for that.  Maybe today.  We'll see.

After a super busy start to summer (Youth Conference, beach trip, etc), we finally feel like summer has begun this week!  Hallelujah!  I went to bed at 9:30 last night and woke up at 9am this morning...WHAT!?!?!?!?  Hello Summer, I kinda like you.

-What has your family been up this summer so far?
-Does the beginning of summer (plus the end-of-school craziness) ever make you want year-round school?

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Memorial Day 2016 | Sales Round Up

This upcoming weekend will be some of the biggest sales of the year (especially excited about Nordstrom's...eeeek!) I've rounded up a few that caught my eye and thought I'd share with my lovely readers!  Keep an eye on my Facebook page for some specific steals and deals I find...what a great time to snag a few summer essentials like wedges, flowy dresses, and beachwear!  Happy Shopping friends!

BANANA REPUBLIC // Extra 40% Off
DATES: Now – 5/30

LOFT // Extra 60% Off Summer Faves + All Sale Styles
DATES: Now – 5/31

J.CREW // 30% Off Purchase
DATES: Now – 5/31

MODCLOTH // Up to 40% Off
DATES: 5/23 – 5/30

NORDSTROM // Up to 40% Off
DATES: 5/26 – 6/7

OLD NAVY // Extra 50% Off Select Styles
DATES: Now – 5/30

SOLE SOCIETY // 50% Off Select Styles on
DATES: 5/26 – 5/30

URBAN OUTFITTERS // Long Weekend Sale – 25% Off Shorts + 25% Off Graphic Tees
DATES: 5/25 – 5/30

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Smart Style: Capelet

While I had pretty much stuck to a capsule wardrobe this last fall/winter, introducing a few "creative" pieces into the rotation this spring has been quite fun!  This striped cape is one of those fun pieces, as well as my adventure with overalls a few weeks back.  These kinds of trendier looks pair best with neural, understated, white, wood accents, etc.

Capelet: Tiaras // Tee: Target // Black Skinnies: Level 99 // Handbag: Kate Spade // Earrings, Necklace: Lavish Leathers // Clogs: Target

It's about to get REAL HOT here in Texas, and so I'm hanging on for dear life to the chances I get to wear a little jacket or cardigan...or cape!  Summer is coming peeps.

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Date Night Outfit | White Overalls

Overalls // Old Navy, Clogs // Target,  Earrings // Lavish Leathers, bag // Fawn Designs, Necklace // Stella & Dot

Date nights have fallen to the wayside around here...mainly because of a hectic spring schedule we have going on right now, but also because we've just flat-out forgotten to make that a priority in our marriage.  We're definitely trying to ramp back up our date night routine, but it is what it is, and I'll take it if we can go out once a month!  Thankfully, we have such a fun and beautiful city in which to find cool things to do and see around here!

This past weekend, we went over to East Austin for a little french food at the Blue Dahlia, followed up by the COOLEST ice cream place I've ever been!  And that's saying something here in Austin!  It's called Spun and they use liquid nitrogen to instantly freeze your ice cream as it's been spun in what looks like a regular ol' KitchenAid mixer.  I was blown away at how perfectly creamy my "Dark Side" creation was.  We'll definitely be going back!

And as a little style risk, I went for it with my new white overalls from Old Navy for our date night.  In wearing them, however, I learned a few lessons:

1.  Overalls in 2016 are NOT your high-school pair.  This time around, they beg to be dressed up with some clunky clogs or fun heels.  Give yourself some height!

2.  Wear a fitted shirt underneath.  This one might not apply to everyone, but for my body type, it's a must, or I look a bit frumpy.

3.  If you're going for white, BE CAREFUL.  With overalls, there's about 50% more real estate for that white to get something on it.  I got home a realized I had a dark smear on the leg, chocolate ice cream dripped on the bib, and a bit of makeup on one of the straps.  Okay, maybe I'm just messy.

Overall (ha see what I did there), I really enjoyed wearing them.  They were something out of my normal rotation, fresh/trendy, and gave me a bit of a challenge to style them just right.  If you're thinking of trying out this "re-born" trend, I say just go for it!  You never know what might be FABULOUS on you!!!

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Finding a Fiddle-Leaf Fig | The Natural Gardener

Last weekend after our busy Saturday morning of sports, we went off in search of the perfect Fiddle Leaf Fig plant I've been wanting.  If you follow me on Instagram, I posted two names we were deciding between for our new little thing...the consensus was "Bellatrix".  Gives sort of a whole personality to her. Because naming your plants is totally normal...right????

I don't have fond memories of nurseries or plant shopping from my childhood.  My mom dragged me around to those places all the time, and I think I'm a little scared from it.  That, combined with my innate ability to kill plants from the get-go, one can understand how I'm not very well-versed in the "shopping for plants" area.  However, I did have my heart set on a Fiddle Leaf Fig.  After calling around to find most places were sold out of the plant, I finally called The Natural Gardener in Austin and they had several!  But going there was much more of a treat than I expected...the grounds are gorgeous, my kids loved the butterfly garden and labyrinth, and I personally quite enjoyed the swing!  It's a lovely spot to not only get your fill of every kind of plant imaginable, but also a great place to spend a little time exploring, lingering, and enjoying nature!

But back to "Bellatrix"... here's to hoping I can keep her alive!  Any tips on indoor plants, please send them my way!!!!

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