Hello from DA BEACH. We’re on a lil’ family vacay for the week, and it couldn’t be better to step away and breathe in some ocean air for a hot sec. Much needed. 🙂 Thankfully, everyone has been REALLY good about social distancing on the beach and avoiding other humans, so we haven’t had to worry. Only worry are the sand flies which are SO BAD this year for some reason – URGH. But you know what we do around here – focus on the positives. 😉 And I’ve got 10+ very big positives to share with ya today in July’s Cool Sh*t I Lovelovelove – can ya believe it’s time?!?! From a cute tie dye set to addictive apple chips, to a fun family game and some baby favorites for Liv, there is a LOT happening – buckle up, pour a cup, and let’s gooooo!
I wasn’t totally sold on this set when I first ordered it; I had high hopes, but was a BIT afraid that I wouldn’t a big fan of the neon-bright tie dye action. And let me tell you…
I am SO so glad I bit the bullet.
It’s not obnoxious – it’s a slightly muted neon tie dye set reminiscent of an explosion of Sharpie-highlighters, and I am here for it. It’s soft AF, so it makes for the coziest lightweight loungewear. It’s the kinda set that feels like jammies, but you can absolutely pair with sneakers or sandals and just wear out and about. ALSO affordable to begin with, but you can get an extra 15% off with code ERICA15 at checkout! Woo!
Plant + Planter
OK friends…I’ve got the opposite of a green thumb. IDK if that makes it purple or rainbow or unicorn sparkled, but I do not have a knack for plants.
BUT, I lovelovelove the look of some intentional greenery in a space, so when I found this cute little fern thing (is it a fern? a palm? The tag said “tropical plant” so any plant buffs in da house know how to ID this one???) at Sam’s Club for something like $12, I figured I’d give it another go. And so far…so good! I think it’s actually GROWING, praise be.
So the plant makes this month’s cut, along with it’s cute little host – this modern planter I found on a whim at the post-pandemic re-opening of my local TJMaxx. It was only 14 bucks and it was lovelovelove at first sight – and without even measuring it, I just knew in my gut it was perfect for my little plant. 🙂 SURE ENOUGH – fits the space perfectly and just has the best vibe!
OK OK I GAVE IN – I hopped on the biker short bandwagon. #RealTalk – at first I was hesitant. I wasn’t sure how this decades-old phenomenon was going to make it back into 2020 with dignity, and sure enough…here we are. And I’m lovelovelovin’ it.
These in particular are GREAT. They’re a high quality make that’s NOT see-through in the slightest, with pockets to boot, and there are a few great colors to choose from. I have black + a fun coral, and they’re top notch for casual wear – but also work for workouts!
And SUCH a great price point. Highly recommend if you’ve been on the hunt for a pair!
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I saw a girl I follow on Instagram RAVE about these apple chips repeatedly, so I finally bit the bullet and ordered a 6-pack (because that was all that was in stock since they sell out SO DANG FAST). And man oh man – I see 100% why they sell out! Fair warning: they’re addicting.
They’ve got just the right amount of crunch but aren’t too hard, if that makes sense. These apple chips are all-natural, gluten-free, fat-free, with no preservatives. For a “healthier” snack, if you’re someone who likes something to crunch on, they’re my fave. I can (+ have) easily down a whole bag in one sitting if I’m not paying attention.
Fave flavor at this point, I think, are these – a 6-pack of just them is currently en route to my house! (Because you can never have enough apple chips on hand).
You get 6 bags of apple chips in the pack, so it comes out to about 5 bucks a pop. Not bad!
If you’re looking for a chic, comfortable bikini that does all the right things in all the right places, this is it. (As seen in my roundup of 10 more modest swimsuits this season!). It’s higher-waisted with fuller coverage in the back. Cute little tie bow in the front with cups up top for comfort + light support. Great flattering option!
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OK OK I cheated a bit here. 😉 And yes, there are 3 individual things lumped together as one fave. But they’re all faves for Liv and there were just SO MANY THINGS to lovelovelove this month that I’ve been into for awhile now, so hope ya don’t mind. 😉
First up, Baby Crocs. I think a must-have recommendation for ALL parents is Baby Crocs. I mean, they’re so dang cute in baby size. But beyond that, they’re actually so dang practical. They don’t rub or cause blisters for Liv, which is hugely important. They’re great for summertime especially, to just throw on to go from place to place, or to even wear barefoot for a hot sec if a kiddo is splashing around a kiddie pool, playing in the yard in the sprinkler, etc. And if they spill a drink on themselves, the shoes aren’t ruined – they’re just great!
Then, these baby pool shoes I found on Amazon before our beach trip have been CLUTCH. Liv has worn them every single day here at the beach, and they’re GAMECHANGERS to help keep little toes safe from sharp shells or rocks while hanging out at the shoreline. They’re also great for being at the pool in general to add a little extra grip for safety. Comfy for kids and like a wetsuit material on the top, with SO MANY COLORS + prints to choose from.
Lastly, Liv’s heart sunnies are faves in our household. They’ve got a little elastic strap to help keep them on baby’s faces, which is also great for toddlers who are prone to ripping things off and throwing them across a room. 😉 She keeps these on and actually loveloveloves, and they aren’t too big. We bought in two colors because they’re just so worthwhile!
We first played this game in STL with Taylor + Adam (don’t miss this quick trip recap with what to do in St. Louis for a weekend away!) and had a BLAST. We must’ve played 32 rounds, and it got pretty intense pretty quickly. It’s a great game because it’s easy to explain + catch on, doesn’t require strategy or too much thinking, but is fast-paced and fun. You’ll get competitive, you’ll yell, you’ll attempt sabotage. You’ll have a blast.
A few weeks ago, I saw a post going around Facebook with a mom’s horror story about her young daughter’s emergency. Essentially, her daughter started experiencing neurological issues after switching to some sunscreens that had “the usual” chemicals found in many/most chemical sunscreens: oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, homosalate, and oxtinoxate. Sunscreens are actually quickly absorbed into your bloodstream, and more and more research has been coming to light lately about potentially harmful side effects – especially neurological – that these chemicals can have over time.
Between that AND Liv’s already-sensitive skin, I did my due diligence to make sure her sunscreens were chemical-free and safe, and Baby Bum’s have been great. (We also lovelovelove this one + this one, both chemical-free and baby-safe!)
Beyond that, this conditioning detangler has worked WONDERS on her hair at the beach, detangling AND actually boosting her cute little curls better than ever before. It’s adorable!
Hamilton on Disney+
I am not throwin’ away my shot! If you haven’t watched THE smash hit Broadway musical on Disney+ yet…WYD?!?! This is the historical fiction brainchild of Lin Manuel Miranda (who – fun fact- did my college graduation speech!) that broke, like, every record possible when it debuted in 2016. Tickets were running over $1,000, folks stood in line for days (literally) for the *chance* to get a ticket, and it was the talk of the town.
Naturally, your girl here had not seen it in person, because ain’t nobody got a spare thousand bucks lying around in these times. 😉 So while I do want to see it in person eventually (hopefully!), I was STOKED to see the original cast on stage for this. They are nothing short of phenomenal.
I went into Hamilton not fully understanding the hype, admittedly skeptical. Granted, I grew up a theater kid who was more into “traditional” Broadway music – the big belting, old-school Rodgers & Hammerstein type – so I didn’t know how predominantly rap would translate on a Broadway stage.
Lo and behold – it did, and it was unreal.
PRO TIP: Watch the closed captioning if you’re afraid of not being able to quickly follow everything. It’s a fast-paced production and you do have to be fully focused, I’d say, to catch everything. So if following along with quick rap lyrics is a bit difficult for ya, no worries – just turn on CC for it!
My girl Taylor finally launched her own podcast! She has put SO much heart n’ soul into this mama-centric brainchild, and it’s going to help so many working moms make it happen.
On Hustle like a Mother, Taylor interviews fellow working moms, whether they work from home or an office, and talks about the very real issues and realities that that brings – from mom guilt to time management. It’s something I know so many mamas can relate to and need in their lives, since we all have so many of the same struggles – and sometimes just don’t talk about it enough.
HAVE YOU TRIED ANY OF MY MONTHLY FAVORITES YET?
And what have been YOUR Monthly Favorites? Would lovelovelove to know! And make sure those apple chips are in your Amazon cart ASAP 😉
P.S. ICYMI and wanna get caught up on or last month’s favorites, just click here!