The Chronological Archive

Select the month / year which you'd like to search

April 2014

Favorite Finds

IMG_3420

IMG_3522

IMG_3387

IMG_3266

IMG_3022

IMG_3395

What up ladies? Did you have a great Monday? It was beautiful out today (finally after yesterday was freeeeezing) and we spent the majority of the day outside gardening. My Mom is here helping and it’s awesome. I’m so not a gardener, even though I am trying to be. I had quite the battle with a giant bush with ridiculous roots this afternoon. I have some battle wounds but I won in the end. We are trying to dig up some weird random bushes the people who lived here before planted. I like simple gardens that look nice and clean. Anyway, here are a few of my favorite finds and reads from the internet this past week.

Enjoy!

1. Did you know Kev has a new site? It’s awesome (of course!) and he just posted a sweet logo he made a while ago. Go (I mean run) and check it out.

2. My favorite bathing suit bottoms for the town pool. I have 2. Love them.

3. Kind of swooning over this makeup bag. Love anything with constellations on it lately.

4. Are these real? I don’t know but oh man! Kev and I were laughing like crazy the other night as we read them.

5. I may have just bought some regular black Birks but I kind of want these ones as well.

6. Luke Swanson is so dang cool! So happy we can call this amazing family our friends. So thankful for them!!

7. This bold striped dress is so simple, yet so chic. I think I would wear it everyday.

8. It’s a boy! It’s a boy!! So happy for Linda and her family.

9. I wish we had a little boy in the house so I could get them this dino bone raincoat. It’s too adorable!

10. Veronika looks so beautiful in orange. Loved this outfit on her!

11. The new line from Lou & Grey for the LOFT is AMAZING. Talk about being comfy and effortlessly cool all at the sometime.

12. Vegan chocolate pie! Mmmm Mmmm. It looks delicious.

13. This hat is so perfect for summer and the beach!

14. Omgosh! These Nike sneakers for little girls kill me. KILL ME!

15. Love this new series on Danielle’s blog. Also love that her first guest was one of my favorite ladies.

16. I’ve been on a major earring kick lately. Moorea has the coolest selection around!

Our Everyday Style | 04.25.14

IMG_3158

IMG_3166

Remember my outfit post last week when I said I wasn’t fancy? Well this is me taking that same top and trying to get fancy. Fancy, but not. I think that is my M.O. for life. hahah. Last Friday we had a Good Friday service at church and I decided we would take the opportunity to dress up just a bit. Loved mixing a sweatshirt with my most favorite vintage skirt. I felt so comfy, it was awesome. We were very appreciative of Mon Petit for sending the girls some pieces from their new Spring/Summer collection. Aren’t they adorable?

Even though I wasn’t on twitter for most of Lent (I popped on at night to reply to messages), it’s funny (or sad?) how your mind is programed to write tweets subconsciously when things happen. I ended up starting a note in my phone when I found myself thinking out a tweet. Only me? Anyway, here is my past month in “tweet” form…

1. Grating anything has to be the one of the scariest experiences ever. #iknowiamgoingtogratemyfinger

2. Omgosh. It’s 6:15pm and it’s still light out. Hallelujah.

3. Finley just ate a rock.

4. R: Finley has a big belly. Is she growing a baby in there?

5. Sometimes I think “is there a better song than Us by Regina Spektor?”

6. I just ate my weight in blackberries

7. Remember the movie Powder?

8. The dance cam is the best part of any sporting event. Rowan just made it on to the one at the hockey game and I’m crying I was laughing so hard.

9. Just wasted way too much time looking at Hawaiian real estate.

10. “love loud, don’t lose out” oh Mates of State you are singing to my soul.

11. Rowan has been in the bathroom for about 15 mins singing Frozen to herself.

12. I just realized the peeler I thought was “broken” and didn’t work good is actually a julienne peeler #doh

13. I found a new band I liked. But then I realized they are probably barely 20. Not sure how I feel about that.

14. Kev just caught Rowan with scissors trying to cut her hair #soitbegins

15. Some nights I look at Finley and think “you’re already wearing a tshirt and leggings how are these any different than pjs?”. Then I don’t change her and put her to bed. #imtiredandlazy

16. I love long texting conversations with @littlehipsqueaks

17. Finley has mastered the art of the side eyes. Ooooh she is sassy. (side eyes emoji)

18. Date night! Driving around in our swagger wagon listening to Hot Water Music. #hardcorekidsturnedparents

Hahahahahahahhahahhh why do these makes me laugh so much? It’s so lame that I wrote them all down throughout the month, but at the same time sort of hilarious? I don’t know. Twitter is a weird, strange 140 count world.

IMG_3142

IMG_3136

IMG_3128

IMG_3127

IMG_3174

IMG_3184

Happy Weekend!!!

OUTFIT DETAILS:
ME:
Raglan Crewneck: c/o Everlane
Skirt: Vintage (similar & similar)
Necklace: Wrenn Jewelry
Heels: Similar

Rowan:
Shirt: c/o Mon Petit
Skirt: Old Navy
Salt Water Sandals: Can be found at Zappos

Finley:
Dress: c/o Mon Petit
Tights: Target
Salt Water Sandals: Can be found at Zappos

Mon Petit is offering 30% off all the full price merchandise now unill 5/1. If you are looking for an outfit for a special occasion head on over and take a look at they super cute spring and summer collection. Use code: JENLOVESKEV30

Final Thoughts On Lent

IMG_3332

When Lent first started I had no idea how much it would effect us this year. I had my doubts we would follow thru with it the whole time. I thought I would be counting down the days until Easter arrived. You know what though? I loved it. Following the cleanse literally transformed our thoughts on food like 110%. Like I’ve said before we’ve always been a pretty healthy eating family, but I learned so much more about food and what exactly we’re putting into our bodies over the past 40 days. It was a little tough at the beginning. Kev had some pretty intense detox symptoms and there was for sure a learning curve to meal planning and being organized. Overall though, I was so please with it and I was proud of us for sticking to it and actually really enjoying it.

For me, I think the point of Lent is to give up things that hold some sort of control over you and of course replace that with Christ. I also think some of us miss the point though and when the 40 days are over, we go back to exactly the way things were. If you thought it was something you should give up in the first place, why just go back to using/eating/doing it the same way after 40 days? I didn’t want to do that. I wanted to make REAL change in my thoughts towards social media, TV and eating. I wanted to learn to not find comfort, self worth or waste time in any of these areas. It was amazing how 40 days away makes you realize you really DON’T NEED to “keep up” with everything everyone is doing, every minute of the day. That you DON’T NEED sugar or TV to find comfort after a long and stressful day. I learned a lot about myself and my relationship with God during this time. I know Lent isn’t something everyone participates in which is totally cool. I just wanted to share my end thoughts on how it changed me this year.

Moving forward we will continue to eat clean in our house. We are finding the balance with the girls and being out with friends and things. We will not expect anyone to cook clean meals when we go to their house for dinner. We will be easy going and appreciative when we are anywhere other than our house. The girls will be able to have treats at parties and special occasions. I don’t want the kids who’ve never eaten any sugar before and gorge themselves at a party because they don’t get it at home. It’s all a balance. In our house I just want to eat whole, unprocessed foods though. Kev is eating meat again and we have added back in plain greek yogurt, eggs, a bit of cheese and Milk and natural sugars (honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar). I will do a post about eating clean with the girls soon. I am not doing the whole 30 thing. I love whole grains (brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, etc) and I think they are healthy to eat for our family.

Social media. I am not going to forever give up Facebook and twitter. That seems a little overboard. This past month however has really broken some thoughts I’ve had about “needing” them though. I’ve enjoyed my days so much more not feeling like I had to be active and present on them all day. I scroll a few minutes each night before bed. Replying to comments and checking in with a few friends. That’s it. I don’t go and read everything that happened that day. Sure, I might miss something but Ive learned that’s ok. I just don’t have time for it all. I see the power and importance to each of them and how people use them to their advantage for building community, businesses and spreading their brand. At this point in my life though it’s the one thing I am ok stepping back from a little bit.

TV. Ehh? Not much to say here. I never really loved watching TV. I could never sit there and watch it without trying to get 10 other things done at once. I love Parenthood, Heart of Dixie, Brooklyn 99 and New Girl. Kev and I will continue to watch them from time to time on hulu. There will be no binge watching of TV season for us though. We watch the few shows we like and that is it. No watching TV for the sake of watching TV. Occasionally on the weekend we may sit and watch a movie together. This isn’t any kind of judgment on anyone who enjoys TV. More power to ya. It just isn’t for us.

I would love to know if you participate in Lent this year and what your final thoughts were? Was it a struggle? Did you learn anything about yourself?

IMG_3345

IMG_3356

IMG_3355

IMG_3324

IMG_3341

IMG_3342

IMG_3350

Finley’s rubber boots are from the Gap and Rowan’s are from Nordstrom (some of their kid hunters on sale for $37!!).

Easter & Some Random Thoughts

Untitled

Easter. What a fabulous day. The weather was perfect, my family was here, church was amazing and I just felt thankful for so much. Easter is one of my most favorite holidays. We of course had to take some Easter family photos after church and oh gosh! I think I need help- I have crossed that line of LOVING (obsessed with) dressing the girls in matching outfits. They will hate me later but as for now they get a kick out of it and I will ride that train until it’s over. I mean come on? How can I not? They are so stinkin’ cute in their dresses.

Thank you all for the sweet and encouraging comments, emails and tweets about fostering. Totally overwhelmed us in the best possible way. You guys are so awesome. Thank you, thank you! I will definitely be sharing more in the next week about our journey thus far.

This is random but you know what I am listing to right now? The soundtrack to Sister Act 2. So good. It’s been my favorite for many, many years. It’s right up there with the Newsies soundtrack.

I ate a lot of sugar yesterday because 1. Lent was over and 2. It was Easter (duh!) and I am paying for it now. Ugh. So sick to my stomach. Guess that’s what happens when you haven’t had sugar in 40 days. Tomorrow the sugar will be put away and we will be back to clean eating. I have some overall thoughts to share on my first Lent experience this week as well as how I see clean eating fitting into our day to day life. I can’t believe how much this cleanse changed us.

Finley’s had major trouble with teething this past week. Goodness gracious. That poor child has cried for 3 days straight. Today she actually smiled and it was so awesome. I’ve felt so terrible for her and my nerves are shot. We are glad to have you back little Fin!

Ok. With that I am off to take a shower (yep, at 4:34pm). Finley just went down for a nap and Rowan is zoned out watching My little Pony after a full day playing outside. Hello 20 mins to myself.
Hope you had a great Monday!

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

OUTFIT DETAILS:

(Me):
Denim Shirt: Madewell
Skirt: Anthropologie
Cap Toe Flats: Tj Maxx (Similar)
Glasses: c/o Bonlook
Watch: Michael Kors

Rowan:
Dress: Gap
Denim Jacket: Crew Cuts
Flower Pin: I made it
Sandals: Saltwaters

Finley:
Dress: Gap
Sweater: Gap
Sandals: Saltwaters

Kev:
Jeans: Forever 21
Denim Shirt: Forever 21
Sweater: Old Navy
Boots: (Similar)

My Everyday Style | 04.18.14

IMG_3250

Sometimes I try to trick myself into thinking I’m fancy. It only last for so long before I slowly start dressing like I am in college again. I can’t help it. I love me a good dress but without a doubt I’m a tried and true tomboy at heart. Simple. Neutrals. Denim. Madewell and Everlane just get me. If I could shop only those 2 places forever and ever. Amen.

Can I tell you how much I LOVE this crewneck short sleeve raglan from Everlane!

Ok. Enough about clothes. Feelin’ pretty somber today actually. The weight of Good Friday always sits pretty heavy with me. I like that though. We couldn’t have the joy of Sunday without it.

Happy Easter weekend everyone.

IMG_3249

IMG_3237

IMG_3240

IMG_3251

IMG_3259

OUTFIT DETAILS:

Jean Jacket: J.Crew
High Waisted Skinny Jeans: Urban Outfitters
Grey Raglan: c/o Everlane
Moccasins: c/o Minnetonka
Sunglasses: c/o Warby Parker

And We Begin A New Journey…

us

I don’t know why I’ve felt so anxious about writing this post. I feel like the longer I blog the more hesitant I become to share such vulnerable parts of our life. When I was pregnant with Finley, there were a handful of times I thought “I wonder if I could get away with not telling anyone online until she was born?” Could you imagine? If all the sudden I was like “Here’s our baby!”. Anyway, I am not pregnant in case you are wondering and I do ultimately love sharing with this wonderful, supportive community. If you follow along on instagram you might have noticed that on Wednesdays, Kev and I have been heading out for the night just the 2 of us. We always take a picture together to remember the evening. It’s an important night for us because we are actually about 2 months into our certification class to become a foster care family! Our class is every wednesday from 5:30-8:30pm. At the end of May/early June we will be hoping and praying for a new little one to be joining our family. Our end family goal of fostering is adoption. However, I know the goal of foster care is reunification with the birth parents, so we will lovingly take and care for as many children that need temporary homes until one gets to legally become part of our family. I am sure we will continue to foster even after that point. It’s something we really feel strongly about. God has truly laid a desire in our hearts to do something in our community for these children. I’m going to be quite honest and say I am completely terrified and extremely excited all at the same time. Yes, we are excited to adopt thru the foster care system but I am already praying for all of these parents and their children to eventually stay together. Of course we want families to stay together! It will be extremely hard to love unconditionally and then have to say good bye but we are excited to partner along side and co-parent in a supportive and encouraging way. We will become that child’s advocate when they don’t have one and we will honor and respect their birth parents (although I am sure in some cases it will be very difficult) when they feel like they have lost them. At this point I really honestly know nothing. I feel silly even talking about it because I have no clue what it will be like. I’ve been scouring foster care blogs to read peoples stories. Everyone’s is so different, so personal. I may not know what it’ll be like and we have a lot to learn, but we are doing this for the children that need a loving, safe, and stable home for the time being. And THAT is the one thing I do know we can give.

I saw this short film a few weeks after we started our class and it just wrecked me… like to the core. I don’t know if I had all kinds of built up emotions from the intense stuff we are learning in our class or what but, I was sobbing for like a good 30 mins after this video. I just wanted to share it here. I feel like there can be a sigma that comes along with foster care children. Do we ever really stop and think about what is really going on behind their actions?

I’ve really loved these 2 blog post as well…
Foster Care Isn’t For You

“Won’t my biological kids be effected by foster care?”

This is going to be a journey I am not sure how will play out. I just trust that God will give us the wisdom and strength with all that lies ahead.

In The Morning Light

IMG_2916

My girls. I just love these 2 so much! We have our moments but they breathe such life into me. They spent the night at their grandparents house this past weekend. It was something I had been looking forward to for so long. It’s funny though, as my Mom started pulling out of our driveway with them my heart ached. I could feel the tears welling up. At that moment I didn’t want them to go. Kev and I had such a wonderful time together though. We actually got to go to a late movie, to dinner and I slept in till 9:30!! I found myself a few times while they were gone looking thru the camera at these pictures from the other morning. Life with little ones can be very mundane. Same routine over and over. But you know what? There is such beauty in so many of those moments. Last week was indeed very rough. I found such redemption in the morning light though. It’s warmth, the glow, watching the shadows dance around as we got ready for our day. It was what my soul needed.

Just wanted to share a few moments that brought me joy from our Monday morning last week…

IMG_2897

IMG_2898

IMG_2910

IMG_2914

morning

IMG_2935

IMG_2929

IMG_2934

morning3

IMG_2951

IMG_2970

IMG_2977

IMG_2985

morning2

IMG_3003

*always, always, always. At some point in the day the cushions end up in a giant jump pile.

** Umm Blind Melon on the Kids XM station? I don’t get it but it made me happy.

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”
Lamentations 3:22-24

American Blogger

American Blogger Poster 001 - Casey Profile with Flag WITH CREDITS 4200x6300

As I’m sure you have heard (and seen) the trailer to the American Blogger documentary was released earlier this week. Chris was here last July to film us for only a few short hours. We had such a wonderful time. Kev and I enjoyed some deep conversations with Chris well after the camera had stopped rolling. He is real. He is genuine. And it was clear as day just how talented, passionate and so excited he was about this movie. I have not seen the movie yet, but I’m excited to and I’m proud to be a part of it. Since the release of the trailer, I’ve been appalled by the cruelty surrounding it (listen when I say constructive criticism is valid and warranted) but I’ve actually felt embarrassed to be a part of a community that has been so disrespectful in how they’ve handled their opinions. We’re all entitled to our own opinions for sure. I mean, I get it, I do. Could the trailer have been different? Yes. Could there have been more diversity with people and genres of bloggers? Sure. Should it have been called American Blogger? Maybe not, but I truly believe Chris had no ulterior motives with the name or the movie. He wasn’t trying to exclude people. He came up with the idea based off Casey’s success and the community she had built around it. It’s their family story to tell. End of story. I’m not here to defend Chris’s decisions or who he selected to be in the film. I will let him speak for himself. However, what does have me all riled up are the comments grouping the women (myself included) in the movie as being all the same. That we aren’t “real bloggers”. I’ve been seeing “cookie cutter”, “perfect lives”, etc… This really grinds my gears. I’m sorry but the twitter thread I saw this morning about how they couldn’t relate to any of us because they still had their sweatpants on and hadn’t had time to wash their hair yet. Ummm hello? You don’t think that happens to me too? And I bet you a million dollars that if someone was coming to film you for a documentary you would have washed your hair, cleaned up your house and gotten out of your pajamas. It seems so ridiculous to judge someone for that. I wish we could celebrate each other. I wish we could celebrate that people have strengths where we might have weaknesses. That we’re not all created as an exact copy of each other. We are all different in wonderful ways. I love the positive community I have created from blogging. I find daily inspiration in these women who are passionately and creatively pursing what they love. Whether that is working full time, being an entrepreneur, writer, being a Mother, an artist, a musician, fashion lover, interior decorator, whatever it is. It’s inspiring to read! Especially when it’s in an area that may not be my expertise. I love hearing their stories. And I have my own story I am trying to tell. My journey has been a roller coaster just like everyone else. We have worked damn hard for everything in our life. I juggle all the same life stresses that you do. I have days where I fail completely at everything. I have days when I struggle at being a good wife and mom. And yes, sometimes my kids have cereal for dinner. So it doesn’t sit well with me when the internet is judging these women in the clip saying we are not deeper than what they see. Each one of us is different in our own way. Let’s not make light of that. I am not one who normally writes about controversial topics, I just truly felt I had to say something. Shame on all of you who are minimizing the stories of these women in the movie. They are real bloggers just like all of you are too. We are all bloggers, in our own communities, writing about our own journeys. That’s the beauty of blogging. I am proud to be in the movie. I am proud of the giant under taking Chris and his family took to work towards this dream of his. This was their story.

With that said… You can have your opinions of course. You can disagree and you don’t have to watch the movie. But think about what you are going to say before you say it. Let’s not spew hate.

*just a note: there is a big, big difference between difference of opinion/constructive criticism and being rude and hateful. I never said we couldn’t share our opinions. In fact I welcome the discussion. I’m not asking for people to have the same point of view. I am talking about being respectful in how we write them.

*also. No ones comments are being deleted so you don’t need to re write a comment accusing me of this. Comments are set to be moderated and sometimes I am just not at the computer to approve them all at that moment. All comments will be approved at some point.

An Ode to our Car

IMG_2867

IMG_2868

IMG_2884

I’m about as far from a “car person” as one can be. I never dreamt of owning any certain car, nor do I really know anything about them if they break. I am however, a very sentimental person. Not so much over things but people, places, and memories for sure. I love traditions. I love nostalgia. If the house was burning, I’m not sure I would grab anything other than my kids and Kev and run out the door. I do love pictures, but I have a blog so there is no panic to grab photo albums. Then 2 weeks ago we decided we needed to get a new car and I realized just how attached I was to our car… like I sobbed at the thought of having to get rid of it. Oh the Ellie (as we like to call her). We have owned a Honda Element since well before Kev and I were even married. It was the first “big” purchase Kev made in his adult life after college. We drove all over the place with that car while we dated. So many late night adventures, listening to music and holding hands. We drove my sister to her wedding in that car. We drove off after saying goodbye to our parents to move 6,000 miles away. We drove cross the US, shipped it to Hawaii on a freight and then lived out our Hawaiian adventure with that car. It also got shipped back to Seattle and driven back across Canada when we moved home. It’s the car that rushed me to the birth center when I was in labor. It was the car we brought Rowan home in. It’s the car that holds every major milestone in our 10 years of being together. Kev loves that car. I love that car and this past Tuesday we said goodbye (insert every cry face emoji).

After we got married and left for Hawaii my Mom gave us the cd single of Steven Curtis Chapman’s The Great Adventure. It’s since then become our family adventure song. It’s cheesy for sure but whenever we head out on a new adventure we put that cd on and listen to the song. That cd, that holds that one single song has stayed in the car for almost 10 years. We may or may not have made up actions to go along with the song (if you want to stop reading my blog I don’t blame you. hahahaha!). I emptied the Element on tuesday as we waited for Kev to get home. I took that cd out and I placed it in my purse. For the last time we loaded up the girls in our beloved car and headed to the dealership to trade her in. Our new car (or should I say Van- don’t get me started) is super nice. All decked out, leather seats, seat warmers, bluetooth, back up camera, sunroof. It’s all great but it doesn’t hold anything to my memories in the Element. Anyway, when we drove home in the new car I took out the cd and put it on. Kev looked at me and said something very thoughtful and profound- I won’t do it justice so I am not going to try (it made me cry) but this is our new chapter. A new vehicle to fill with adventures and memories. The girls are over the moon about the van and seeing them happy makes me happy (plus who can complain about side doors that open and close themselves). I see your ways mini van… I may be changing my view to the darkside.

“Saddle up your horses
We’ve got a trail to blaze
Through the wild blue yonder
Of God’s amazing grace

Let’s follow our Leader
Into the glorious unknown
This is a life like no other
This is the great adventure…”

4606588744_8a6cf153ae_o

DSC_0034

DSC_0148

DSC_0190

DSC_0234

DSC_0240

DSC00387

DSC_0085

DSC_0177

DSCN1546

DSCN0944

5078920602_9ceb366b9e_o

*Mark this as one of the cheesiest posts on jenloveskev. If you are curious we ended up getting a black XLE Toyota Sienna. We are basically these parents now.

Monday Morning Favorites…

Untitled

Happy Monday Friends! It’s going to be over 60 today!! Hip hip hooray. We are super pumped, so I’m closing my computer for the day and we’re hitting the park. Of course not before we all admire how adorable Rowan is in her first school picture. Omgosh. I die. Hope you all have a great day!!

Here are a few of my favorite items and posts from around the internet this past week…
1. Dresses that must get in my closet for the summer. White, Red and another white. Plus, I think it’s meant to be- just look at the name of these sandals.

2. How super cool is this?!? So excited for Rubyellen.

3. The most worn item in my closet. So simple, yet so awesome.

4. Not gonna lie. Ohdeardrea is probably one of my most favorite blogs. Ever. Love her. Love this post on blogging.

5. What color Saltwaters would you choose for yourself? I’m partial to the tan & the red.

6. How delicious does this drink look? Strawberry blood orange limeade! Love the photography as well.

7. The absolute most perfect spring coat! Love the hood.

8. So happy to hear the news about baby number two for Sydney! Also, so excited for Indiana and the birth of Lucy. Love reading her birth stories. I’m always crying and laughing all at the same time.

9. Did you know the LOFT carries swimsuits? They are totally adorable and flattering for ladies (me!) who don’t want to try to wear a teen suit from Target. Also, I’m kind of obsessing over this romper. I always forget how much I like the LOFT. I got all of my summer shorts there last year. Love them.

10. 2 of my favorite fashion posts over the past 2 weeks. Always love Julie (duh!) and love Bridget’s large red beads.

11. This blowup donut pool float is about the cutest thing ever!

12. Totally touched (and a crying mess) by Mandi’s heartfelt post about having cancer. What a journey! So much love for her.

13. How pretty is the back of this sports bra? Love the straps on this purple one as well- perfect for low impact exercise. When the temperatures change I start itching for some new running gear. Aren’t these shoes and running capris awesome?

14. Totally inspired by Lauren’s meal prep posts! So helpful for eating healthy for the week.

Clean Eats | Creamy Butternut Squash Soup

IMG_2823

After getting tons of questions about what I’ve been eating this month (and lots of jokes about twigs and berries), I decided I would start a series called “Clean Eats”. I hope to share some yummy, clean (nothing processed), and filling recipes you can easily make at home. Last fall Panera had a limited time Squash soup. Oh man! It was so yummy. I am assuming it was high in calories with cream and sugar. It sure was delicious though. Since I stated this cleanse, I have been craving some sort of warm “comfort food”. I decided to try my hand at making my own squash soup that would fit into the restrictions of the cleanse. This soup is hands down one of the best things I have ever tasted. It is so yummy! I have made it every week for the past 4 weeks. If the cold weather keeps sticking around here in the northeast, you can safely assuming I will keep cooking this soup. I made some homemade tortilla chips as well for something to dip in the soup. Super easy!

Ingredients:
4 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
1 tbsp. coconut oil
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 large apple, peeled and diced (i’ve used a few types of red apples as well as a granny smith one time too)
1/2 onion, diced (I used a purple onion, yellow would work well too)
2 cups water
2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp salt
Cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 425
2. Spread out butternut squash on a baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon. I sort of use my hands to toss them around to coat evenly.
3. Roast in oven for about 30 mins.
4. While butternut squash is roasting, add coconut oil to a large pot and heat on medium-high heat. Add onion, apples and curry powder. Stir to mix and sauté together for about 10 mins, or until soft.
5. Add water and almond milk
6. When roasting is done, add butternut squash to mixture. Stir to combine. Add salt.
7. Using an immersion blender, blend soup until creamy and mixed well. I am sure a blender or food processor could handle this step as well.
8. Serve topped with some fresh parsley and pepitas.

For the tortilla chips:
We used Ezekiel tortillas (found in freezer section). We love this brand because their breads are made with only whole ingredients and use sprouted grains.
1. Cut into triangles. Line on a baking sheet. Dust with a bit of salt and spices of your choice. I usually add a bit of chili powder and cumin.
2. Bake at 350 for about 8-10 mins

IMG_2822

I think Rowan has taken notice to all the cooking going on around here lately. She has been wanting to help a lot and asking to bake or “make soup” almost everyday. I love having her help out. We got these awesome (awesome!) foam blocks/step stools that the girls can’t seem to get enough of. They are the perfect height for Rowan to reach the counter, and the most fun toy in the house right now. I wish we had a whole toy room full of bObles. Thanks ModernMini!

IMG_2828

IMG_2848

IMG_2800^^ Rowan making “soup”. This game entertains her for like an hour. I just give her a ton of little dishes with random ingredients and of course some pink water and she cooks it all up into a very yummy soup.

IMG_2857^^ and a picture of Finley just ’cause.

Finley’s overall are from Target | Highchair from Boon | Moccasins from Freshly Picked | Headband from Little Hip Squeaks | Llama by Jellycat (gift from Auntie Amy)

Hey! Remember us? | And some thoughts on Balancing It All

kevjen

Whew! It’s been a while. I feel like I blinked my eyes and 2 weeks pasted. I didn’t mean to stop blogging there for a bit but sometimes it just happens. I posted a picture on instagram last week talking about balance. I’m pretty sure this idea of finding balance is somewhat of a myth. A lie and pressure we put on ourselves (especially as Moms) that we must achieve it. We are told to find time to get it all done. We have to find the “balance” of it all. You NEED to have the time to take care of kids, clean, cook, work, be a good wife, friend, mother and make sure you find time to do things for yourself. Seriously? Who has the time to do all of that and or do it well? I think the thing with balance is that it’s constantly changing as life changes. For me that looks different every week. It’s the ebb and flow of life. Some weeks somethings take more time and energy than others. Sometimes, I can blog or paint every day and some days, weeks, or months, there’s just not so much time. But that’s ok. We don’t need to feel guilty over that. Whatever your hobby or love is doesn’t mean you have to have time to do it everyday or you fail at life. You can still take care of yourself and be happy when other things just take more of your time. It’s a season. Things will change. These tiny girls won’t be tiny for very long. Everyday they are becoming more independent and time is freed up.

For me my top priorities are 1. God 2. Kev 3. the girls 4. others (friends, family, helping others) 5. everything else. I will always make sure these things are in check before I start trying to fit in other things. Am I perfect at keeping my priorities straight? No! Of course not, but I do try. I feel like we have a happier life, family, marriage when they are. Most days that is all I have time for, but that’s ok. We have a lot of fun in our family. I wouldn’t change that. I don’t have a nanny, or daycare or even family in the area. Anyways, I am not really sure where I am going here. I just wanted to encourage you ladies not to feel guilty when you don’t have time to get it all done. Putting more effort into one thing can only mean it will suffer somewhere else. That’s life. It has nothing to do with you not being about to balance everything. We all have a lot on our plates and we are doing the best we can!

High fives for everyone!

Here are a few photos from my phone over the past few weeks- it’s about all I’ve had time for.

running ^^Training season has started. There is a half and full marathon for us this spring. You can follow along on instagram for running tips and trick with hashtag #runwithjenloveskev

sickbaby^^Poor Finley. She’s been battling such a terrible cold.

matesofstate^^Kev and I got to go on a date to see Mates of State play a super intimate show at Berklee in Boston. It was such a fabulous night!

finley ^^I started a silly hashtag for Finley called #funfactsaboutfinley on instagram

hockey^^Hockey games and Mickey LIVE!

finley2

javas^^A weekend away in Rochester. Kev was speaking at a church conference about the importance of design and having a strong brand. We luckily got to tag along and hang out with my sister.

rochester

pool^^Hotel pool all to ourselves.

sisters

butterfly^^Pretty sure there is nothing cooler for kids than the Strong Museum in Rochester.

finbutterfly

schoolday

kitchen

kids

Life is good and we are living it!

Hi, I'm Jen!

Welcome to my personal lifestyle blog. It features topics such as motherhood, family life, fashion, cooking, and all sorts of adventures. I hope you enjoy what you find!


    Warning: array_slice() expects parameter 1 to be array, null given in /home/content/95/2048595/html/hosted/richardson/jenloveskev/wp-content/plugins/easy-instagram/include/class-easy-instagram.php on line 566
Jen Loves Kev
css.php