Living the Wolf Style: Adult Swimsuit Edition

This photo is almost two years old, but it is the most recent photo I have of myself with B in a non-maternity bathing suit since I was super pregnant with C all last summer.  Other than a brief weekend in South Beach (see prior post), I haven’t worn much non-maternity swimwear over the past couple of years.

Needless to say, I am in dire need of some swimwear updates.  I’ve tried on countless swimsuits and feel like I’ve finally got a few I can be excited about wearing this pool season.  Read on for some swimwear shopping tips and for my picks for this season.

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Updating My Workout Wardrobe

I am finally within a few pounds of my pre-baby #2 weight, so I recently went shopping for new workout gear to keep me from looking frumpy now that some of my gear is too big.  Plus – is there anything more motivating than new workout gear?  Mama now needs some motivation to get her to pre-baby #1 weight.

I was pleasantly surprised by all of the goodies out there right now.   My exercise of choice lately is FlyWheel and walking (or should I say double stroller pushing?), and all of the items I’ve included in this post have been working out great.  I plan on picking Barre3 back up in the Fall, and I am sure these would all work great for that too.

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Pantry Overhaul

Spring is officially here, and I’ve been carrying out some Spring cleaning here at the Wolf Den.  The first order of business was our pantry, and I am happy to say I totally conquered that last weekend.

I’ve always thought our pantry was fairly organized and clean.   I grouped like things together and kept up on food that needed to be tossed.  Boy was I wrong.   Once I decided to empty out the entire thing, I saw just how many near empty bags, boxes, etc. of food I had.  I even found some moldy bread and expired canned goods.  Yuck. Continue reading “Pantry Overhaul”

Still Rising and Shining

You may have seen my real food breakfast post.  If you didn’t, you can check it out here.  I’ve been so impressed by the pumpkin spelt muffins from that post.  Not only are they are easy to make, delicious, and nutritious (use spelt flour and are sweetened only with honey), they taste just as good thawed from the freezer weeks later.  I can’t tell you how nice it is to have homemade baked goods only a quick defrost away.  It totally removes any need for the processed junk – even on your busiest day.  So long Starbucks drive-thru pumpkin bread and lemon loaf.  

I recently set out to find some other muffin recipes using spelt flour.  Read on for the delicious recipe I found (and modified) for Spelt and Oat Banana Muffins.  Seriously y’all, I had to close my eyes when I bit in to this muffin for the first time it was that good. 

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Mini Project: The Artsy Cork-board

I know I said I wasn’t going to do any big projects this year, but I may have snuck in a mini one.  I was first inspired by my friend Emily’s art wall off of her kitchen in her beautiful home.  She has three kiddos, and a wall full of their sweet creations.

I’ve also been pretty inspired by these Pinterest images.

So 2017 became the year of the art wall here at the Wolf Den.  I decided against a chalkboard (I can’t stand the texture and feeling of chalk) and against anything magnetic (I didn’t want to worry about C swallowing anything magnetic).  Cork seemed like the perfect solution.  I’ll keep the thumbtacks up high and no art (or art attached with tape) down low for now.

Once I decided on materials, I had to find a spot.  Our kitchen doesn’t have any big open walls, but we do have this odd area between our kitchen and our den.  It was almost like an entryway to the den — complete with totally useless glass double doors.  Anyway, I really wanted a big wall to put all of B’s (and one day C’s) masterpieces, and this seemed to be one of my only options.  I also liked that it led in to a relatively casual area.  As much as I love my kiddo’s art, I didn’t want it visible from the dining room or formal living room for obvious reasons.

Here is the before (full side).

Here is the before (half side)

Here is the after (full side).

Here is the after (half side).

First things first, I had the doors removed and the door jams covered up so you couldn’t tell doors were missing from the space.  Then I got my super duper handy man (see my closet post and future kitchen banquette/extra refrigerator and freezer drawers post for his handy work) to frame out some custom cork boards for each wall.

I originally wanted to do two full size cork boards — one on either side.  I will forever love symmetry.  But, after realizing it would be an odd shape to work around the light switches, I opted for a half board on that side.  I figure that I can always put a chalk board or magnetized board when the girls get a little older down below.

If you are looking hard at some of the photos above, you may also be wondering why I invested in cork boards and not in a paint job.  I guess I am just being a realist — I am just as sure that my children will mark up the walls as I am sure that they will bring home art.  So, it was an obvious decision for now.

This wall makes me so happy.  Even before we had children, I had always dreamed of seeing my little ones’ first masterpieces.  I can’t wait to rotate the art and add some of sweet C’s one day.

Right now I am using the half size board for B’s class photos and birthday party invitations (so I don’t want to post a photo of that for her classmates’ anonymity sake).  I am keeping the junky stuff (calendar, bills, other random stuff) in our mudroom on a different cork board to keep the clutter away from this space.

What do you think?  I just love how versatile it will be as the seasons change and our kiddos grow.  The full size board will be the perfect display area for all of our Christmas cards in December.

Stay tuned for my pantry overhaul.  I am emptying out the entire thing Saturday and filling it with lots of Container Store goodness.

Rising and Shining

Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day.  But, at least in our home, it was often the most hurried and overlooked.  Lately, however, I’ve been pretty proud of the choices we’ve been making for breakfast.

Read on for three real food* weekday breakfasts that have been in heavy rotation here at the Wolf Den over the past two months.  And if you are feeling a little more ambitious, check out the real food weekend breakfast ideas at the end of the post.

*Real food is food that is in its natural state or is minimally processed, has no added sugar, and has a very small list of ingredients.

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Pretty in Pink

I am not a “pink” girl — you know the type where everything has to be pink (including the furry steering wheel cover and bedazzled”princess” key chain).  But I am really in to the color pink lately.   Maybe it is because I have two little girls, or maybe it is because it is February.  Regardless, I am embracing the color and excited to add a few pink pieces to my wardrobe.

I am a firm believer that everyone has at least one shade of pink (from the palest of pink to the deepest of magenta) that flatters their complexion.  Read on for some fun pink options to help you transition from Winter in to Spring.

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Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker

I’ve always thought of slow cooker meals as being unhealthy.  It didn’t help that the only slow cooker cookbook I had seemed to think that nothing can come out of the contraption without first being slathered in cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup.  You’d seriously think Campbell’s was a secret sponsor of all slow cookers.  Moreover, the first recipes that come up on Pinterest when you type in slow cooker or crock pot are of the cream-of-whatever-variety.   So you can imagine my surprise when my 100 Days of Real Food: Fast and Fabulous cookbook had quite a few slow cooker recipes.

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