Being Brickner : November 2017

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Our 2017 Holiday Card

*This post is in partnership with Minted.

Tis' the season for holiday cards, one of my faaaavorite times of the year!!  I'm pretty sure I will still be sending cards when our kids are out of the house and in college (and maybe even married with their own little families!) -- I just love it so much.  In a world where everything is so technology-driven, there is something so special about some good old-fashioned snail mail.  Especially when it involves some sweet pictures of my babies! :)

We teamed up with our favorite people at Minted again this year, I adore their company so much and have gotten some of my most-loved pieces (including art & kitchenware) from them.  Their cards are just the best, so many creative and beautiful ones to choose from and every single one is such high-quality.  We had family photos done a few weeks back, and went with a bit of a romantic, bohemian vibe, so I wanted to choose a card that had the same sort of feel.  The one we ended up going with (found here) is one of their foil-pressed cards, we used a rose gold finish and I am so happy with the final result!!!  Per usual, I loved it when I ordered it but it was even ten times more beautiful in person, I cannot say enough about the quality or beauty of their cards.

Ordering these cards was so easy, the Minted website gives you the option to the choose the photo you want and then it will place it in all the cards so you can get a better idea of the option that you like the best.  It also lets you "heart" ones that are your favorites which I find helpful every year, there are pages & pages of card options so it makes it way easier and less overwhelming.  I always choose my favorites and then go back and compare to find the one I really think is the right fit.

They also have a (free!) design service, after you have submitted your card a designer will look over it and make any changes that either you request or that they think will enhance the card.  It's your choice to use it, but I always do, I love the idea of someone else looking over it besides me! 

Finally, there are tons of options for add-ons to make your card more fun, which I always go for and can never resist!  I added the rounded corners on our cards, which give it a more feminine look, I loved it paired with the rose gold!  I also chose to add a matching envelope, of course the Kraft, which reminded me of our wedding invites six years ago.  For the first time, I also did an envelope liner, and I loved how it added something fun when you first open the envelope.  And quite possibly my favorite part, the printed addresses for both the return address and the recipient's address (a mom's dream come true, because time).  This really is the best mom hack ever, I don't even have to retype the addresses in each year since they are automatically saved.  I also ended up getting my stamps at Minted this time around, they match the design we used and saved me a trip to the post office afterwards.

The shipping was super fast and once they arrived, I only had to place the card in the envelope, add the liner, and put the stamp on.  Which is literally the only reason we had our cards out before December 1st this year!  It's such a good feeling and another check off that Christmas list.

If you need to order your cards, Minted has extended their Cyber Monday until this morning at 9am PT -- you can use the code CM17.  Their ordering process is super quick and their customer service is the best at working with -- I know you will love them as much as we do. Happy shopping, friends, and happy start to the holiday season!!!!  XO

PS -- I also wanted to share some of my favorite holiday gift ideas from Minted, I love to give our family members (especially the grandparents) photo gifts each year.  These calendars are so beautiful, I love how timeless they are and how they really are so versatile for anyone on your list.  I also love this sweet photo art, it's so original and would also be great for any members of the family! 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Thanksgiving 2017

Our first ever Thanksgiving dinner at our house is in the books, we had so much fun hosting some of our family and getting to spend some much-needed downtime relaxing and eating lots of delicious food.  My husband made the turkey, we divided the appetizers & sides up between members of my family, and my contribution was the tablescape (which was so much fun to do, thanks to the Magnolia line at Target!).  Everything was so yummy and beautiful, but the best part was definitely getting to see the table my husband worked so hard on a few years back, filled with so many family members we love around it, and afterwards getting to visit with my sweet grandparents at the hospital.  Thankful, indeed.

Candle Holder --  Black Bowls --  Girls Fringe Boots -- My Jacket
We went around the dinner table to share what everyone was thankful for, Waverly Maye had a list with at least one thousand things, including Shimmer & Shine, and Avalon Elle was a little too shy to share (but politely shared with me later when we were on our own).  So true to both of their little personalities, we are of course so very thankful for our little girls.  Happiest Thanksgiving from our family to yours, and now, let the MOST WONDERFUL time of the year officially begin! XO

Friday, November 24, 2017

Black Friday Favorites

Hope you had the most amazing Thanksgiving with your loved ones!!  We had a such a sweet day, and are looking forward to a few more lazy days at home before returning to work next week.

Sharing five of my favorite deals for today, mostly for kids, it's no secret that I love shopping for my girls and they are usually who I buy for first!  

1.  June & January -- One of my FAVORITE small shops for kids, they have the cutest stuff for both boys and girls and all of it is super comfy!  Their sale starts this morning at 7 ET, there are tons of items on sale (including our favorite knee highs!) and it is also $10 off all weekend.

2.  Hunter Boots -- You know my love for Hunter books runs deep, we wear them rain or shine and definitely more than any other pair of shoes we have for the girls!  These are on sale and are an extra 20% off, there are also tons of other options that you can find on their site here.

3.  The Land of Nod -- The entire site is 20% off & free shipping this weekend!  We got both this carry dollhouse and this adorable play food set on Black Friday last year, and love both so much! Both the girls rugs for their rooms are also from there, you can find them here and here.

4.  BlaBla Kids -- Some of our favorite dolls are the BlaBla ones, soft, cuddly, and adorable!  We have had our eye on this rainbow pillow and this deer for the holidays, use the code Twinkle for 20% off.

5.  Gap -- The entire site is 50% off everything, no exclusions (use code BLCKFRIDAY)!!!!!  This would be the perfect time for these adorable duck boots or this down jacket for winter. 

Happy shopping, friends! XO

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Christmas Books for Kids

Two more days until Thanksgiving and we are celebrating by sharing some of our favorite Christmas books!!!  This year I have been wanting to bring out alllllll the Christmas things earlier more than ever before, but have held back mostly, since we are hosting Thanksgiving dinner.  We do have a few mini trees here & there, as well as some things in the girls room, including our collection of holiday books!  Bringing out books for each holiday is one of my favorite parts, the book ledge in the girls playroom is one of the most loved places in our home and I hope it always stays that way.  Here are some current faves!

The Little Reindeer -- Pick A Pine Tree -- Tallulah's Nutcracker -- A Christmas Carol -- The Night Before Christmas --
S is for Santa
A few of these are ones I recently added for this season, which I love to do every year, but this year wanted to find a couple that were at a little higher level since we do have a kindergartner now!  Waverly is really into reading and following along, pointing out the words she recognizes and knows, she is so proud and it's the sweetest thing.

If you (or your kids) have a favorite, I would love to hear!!!  Happy Tuesday, friends! XO

Friday, November 17, 2017

Thanksgiving Favorites & Plans

Aaaah, less than ONE WEEK until Thanksgiving!!!  I almost don't want the holiday season to officially kick off because I know we will blink and it will all be over, but whichever way, we are so ready for all the fun to come.  Our Thanksgiving plans have been a little up in the air with my grandfather still in the hospital, but we decided last-minute to host dinner for both Thanksgiving and our annual Friendsgiving this weekend, and are up for the challenge!  This will actually be our first time doing Thanksgiving dinner at our house, and maybe our last, because we are putting our house on the market in the next few weeks!!!!!!!!!!!!  It's been in the works for a little while, and we are super excited about it (also anxious and a little bit nervous!), but feel like the timing is right.  In the meantime, we are planning to spend as much as time as possible in our house over the holiday season, soaking up this special time with our family in the house we have made a home over the last five years.

Sharing a few favorites, starting with ALL THINGS Hearth & Hand, the Magnolia line at Target -- I could literally buy the entire thing.  I got the girls this dollhouse for Christmas (and also love this wooden bench for a little boy), and the print on these napkins is so good!   Our go-to dresses at Old Navy have the cutest velvet version out right now, and this wreath from Anthro is so good!  This time of year is oh so good and so tempting.

And lastly, sharing some pictures of the girls having the most fun in the leaves over last weekend.  Playing in the leaves in the fall at my grandparents house is forever one of my favorite childhood memories, there is something just so innocent and sweet about it and I love that my own girls love it just as much.  Their happy is truly my happy, not all our moments look as joyful as this (I promise!), but it's these ones that make all the others completely worth it.

Wishing you and yours the happiest weekend! XO

Wednesday, November 8, 2017


We are eight days into November but it kind of feels like eighty-four.  Waverly got sick for the third time this year already (hello, kindergarten!), and had to stay out of school for four days, we've been battling some time restraints on trying to complete some big projects at the house, and by far most importantly, my family has been focusing on the recovery of my grandfather since his heart surgery on Halloween day.   The surgery didn't go quite as planned, and we had a few scary days afterwards, but I've never been happier to report anything (just about ever!!) than that he is finally awake and on the mend.  We are currently feeling like we witnessed a miracle and certainly have a lot to be thankful for this season.

  The girls have a couple days off school this week, and then it's only one more full school week before one of our favorite weeks of the year -- Thanksgiving!!!!  As a teacher, I have always loved this time of year so much, that half-day on Wednesday is full of so much excitement and anticipation for all the fun (and days off!) that are near.  I have to laugh this time around though, Waverly loves school so much that she gets sad on Sunday mornings when I tell her that the bus isn't coming to pick her up for the second day in a row, so I know she is going to have a hard time with all the breaks over the next couple of months.  Oh sweet girl, how that will change one day.

Sharing some pictures from a few weeks back, when the weather was much warmer and pumpkin patches were still acceptable every weekend.  We have now moved on from sleeveless floral dresses to sweaters and boots and are LOVING IT! 


Happy November to you and yours!!!! XO

PS -- You know we are BIG Hunter boots fans over here, there a few kids pairs currently on sale on their site, you can find them here!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Halloween 2017

I usually try to keep things more light and positive on the blog, but keeping it real, this Halloween was not quite as festive or cheery as holidays normally are our way.  My grandfather was scheduled for heart surgery early Halloween morning, so I spent most of the day at the hospital with my family while the girls were at school and then with my mother-in-law.  I would obviously gladly trade any holiday for his good health, and though he is still currently in the hospital, I have no doubt that he will be laughing and bouncing my girls around in no time.  Any good vibes or prayers our way for his recovery are welcomed!

I was able to make it back just in time to get the girls ready for trick or treating, I could not wait to get them in their costumes and help them put a little makeup on (which they were so excited about!).  This year they decided to be princesses, it was pretty clear early on in October that there was exactly zero chance in me picking their costumes this time around, and then we walked into TJ Maxx one afternoon and saw the prettiest Snow White & Belle costumes in their size that they loved, so I couldn't resist!  Easiest costumes we have ever had, and they have already also gotten to wear them to a princess birthday party and a few afternoons playing dress-up at the house.  Right before we went out to go trick or treating, Waverly ran to her basket of dolls to get her Snow White and Belle dolls for each of them to carry, they were so proud and absolutely loved being princesses so much!  I would definitely say that this year was the one where they loved going to each house the most, Waverly was loving running around with some of her friends from school and Avalon was the sweetest EVER running after them all from behind.  For the first time ever we lasted right up until the very end, the four of us drove my brother's golf cart around our neighborhood -- Waverly was crazy excited as she racked up on the remainder of everyone's candy since there was no other trick or treaters left, and Avalon fell asleep on my lap with a lollipop still in her mouth.  Stay little forever.

I also wanted to share a few pictures from our weekend, we finally carved our pumpkins!  This is an activity I have a love/hate relationship with, it's always a huge mess and the kids usually are into it for like the first five minutes (much like painting, which takes thirty minutes to set up and usually lasts five), but it's always so much fun seeing the final product and them getting so excited over it.  Thank goodness for my husband, each of the girls picked out the hardest picture out of the book, a witch and three pumpkins.  He actually ended up getting some power tools out of the garage to make it happen.  As for me, I forgot to even take a picture of the final product -- but they were amazing and so pretty lit up on Tuesday night!

Hope you had the most amazing Halloween night with your families!!!  And now -- it's officially Christmas, y'all! XO