Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites

Before Teddy started Kindergarten a few weeks ago, I was told that he needed to bring a snack, along ... [ Read More ]

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley

Notebooks, Notecards and a Minted.com Giveaway, Oh My!

Happy Monday lovely peeps! If you have followed me for awhile, then you probably know about my love ... [ Read More ]

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

Fancy Friday Favorites

I said I would be back this week…a week later wasn't my plan, but I'm trying to get into the back to ... [ Read More ]

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Fall Essentials for The Busy Mom

Happy Friday!!!! I have been a tad MIA this week with getting bcd into the swing of school!! I will ... [ Read More ]

fallessentialsedc

Labor Day 2014 Sales

Labor Day weekend is here! To me that means two things! One: School starts next week. I have mixed ... [ Read More ]

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Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites

Before Teddy started Kindergarten a few weeks ago, I was told that he needed to bring a snack, along with a lunch, each day. He is the ultimate creature of habit and the pickiest eater, so his lunches are almost always the same items on repeat. I wanted to find a few fun recipes that I could make each week for his school snacks to change that part up a bit, but they had to be things that he would actually eat. Naturally, I looked for a lot of recipes that included peanut butter and/or chocolate chips. I do energy bites quite a bit. Those are a favorite around here and I try to keep a batch in the fridge or freezer at all times. But, I wanted to expand his horizons a bit, so I checked Pinterest for inspiration. 

 Last week, I made delicious peanut butter pretzel chocolate chip granola bars and we all loved them. I ate way too many. The only issue I had was they were hard to fit into the square container that we use for his school snack and they broke apart easily when eating, which Teddy gets spazzy about (picky eater!!!). I decided to try my own spin on the recipe, since we all loved it so much and make them into ball form. I figured they would be easier for him to eat and they would fit better into his square snack containers and I was right. I waited all day for him to come home and taste test them and I got a big thumbs up and he said he loved them, so I figured I needed to share the recipe with you! 

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites:

Adapted from this recipe

1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups oats
1/2 cup crispy rice cereal
3/4 cup chopped pretzels
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips or regular chocolate chips
2 tablespoons Chia Seeds

In a sauce pan, heat the butter, brown sugar, honey, and peanut butter on medium-low heat. Be sure to stir occasionally so that the mixture doesn’t burn. Once it’s all mixed together, turn off heat and add the vanilla.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley In a separate bowl, mix the oats, crispy rice cereal, chopped pretzels and chia seeds together.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley Pour the hot mixture into the bowl of dry mixture and mix until it’s well coated. Add the chocolate chips…they will melt. You can let it cool if you don’t want the chips to melt. The melted chocolate made the bites a brown color and it made them seem like they had more chocolate in them and Teddy thought he was eating a ball of chocolate goodness with some other stuff mixed in. :) So I am all about the melting over here.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley  Place bowl in fridge for at least 30 minutes to an hour. If you are impatient like me, you can put it in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Once the mixture is cooled, it will be easier to form into the bites. The mixture might be a tad dry…just put a little water on your hands while you make the bites. You can make the balls as small or as large as you’d like.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley It’s as simple as that! You have a fun little snack for you and your whole fam bam!

Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bites // Fancy Ashley Store them in a sealed container or bag in the fridge and enjoy!!!

Also!!!

Don’t forget to head over and enter my Minted.com giveaway! There are TWO $100 credits to win!!!

Notebooks, Notecards and a Minted.com Giveaway, Oh My!

Happy Monday lovely peeps!

If you have followed me for awhile, then you probably know about my love for Minted.

I order our Christmas cards from them each year, along with notecards, business cards and have you seen their mommy calling cards?! I seriously love the concept! I love their paper quality and their customer service is the best and I know this from experience. I had a package get lost in the mail last fall and they resent me my order. It was amazing and I loved them before, but that made me love them even more.

They have added notebooks to their list of awesome products and I absolutely love them and couldn’t wait to add some to our paper collection. There are a ton of different options, but we decided to go with the notebooks with our own pictures on them. I figured Teddy and Reagan would love them and I was so right.

Both of the little presidents love seeing themselves on a notebook. They think it is the coolest thing ever.

Teddy for Minted // Fancy Ashley

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

Reagan was even more amazed that her beloved Boo is on the front of her notebook.

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

We try to practice writing every once in awhile around here. As some of you know, it’s been a bit of a struggle for Teddy, so we try to make it fun. These notebooks are definitely a fun new way to practice.

Teddy for Minted // Fancy Ashley

Teddy for Minted // Fancy Ashley

I have been working with Reagan on learning how to write an R and hoping to work on the rest of the letters in her name too. She loves coloring and writing and pretty much anything artsy, so she has a blast learning R and is always asking me to show her more letters. Of course, she must use a fancy gold marker. :)

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

We are using our notebooks for coloring and writing, but the possibilities are endless with what they can be used for.

Teddy for Minted // Fancy Ashley

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

You can get them with blank pages (like we have), with lined pages (great for kids who are practicing writing inside the lines. Our letters are still large and in charge here.) and with gridded pages. You can also get notebooks in address book form, monthly planner form and weekly planner form. Not only are they perfect for kiddos, but they are awesome for you too and make really fun gifts as well!! I have been dreaming up a few gifts that I plan to order for Christmas and birthdays.

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

We also love their notecards!! When I saw these flamingo notecards (or “mingo” as they are called in our house), I knew they would be perfect for our little mingo lover. I mean, a flamingo wearing sunnies?! These cards were pretty much made for Reagan.

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

She turned 3 in July, so I knew these thank you cards were pretty much mandatory for her. Of course I am writing them and she adds a little scribble to each one as a “signature.” :)

Reagan for Minted // Fancy Ashley

I have a little surprise for you today!!!

TWO of you have the opportunity to win $100 credits to Minted!

How exciting is that? Notebooks, Christmas cards, business cards, etc! If you win, it’s your pick!! Woohoo!!!

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter! Good luck!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tell me, what is your favorite Minted product? Hard to pick just one, I know!!!

Thank you to Minted for sponsoring this post. As always, opinions and love for this company, are purely my own.

Fancy Friday Favorites

I said I would be back this week…a week later wasn’t my plan, but I’m trying to get into the back to school groove. It’s taking longer than imagined! I’m back though, today at least! You can follow us on Instagram where I also give a tiny peek in our days.

Today, I am linking up with the girls for Friday Favorites!

Momfessionals
One
This week was our first week of 5 full days of school. It was tough. Seriously, I am exhausted and I know Teddy is exhausted. We are so ready for the weekend! Here they are as they were headed out the door for school!
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*Just as I suspected, this little area has became a crazy catchall for all the things! Ha! I love it so much!!! At least it keeps the things off my desk and counters!
Two
I am so very ready for fall. Apparently we are supposed to have a cold front this weekend and by cold font they mean it will be 80 degrees. It’s actually hilarious. But, I am willing fall in this house. My favorite pumpkin candle is burning constantly and yesterday, I made a couple loaves of pumpkin bread and some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. I ate half of the mini loaf within minutes. Ha!
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I use this recipe and I sub other things for the dates or omit them sometimes. It is so yummy with the dates too. To shop a few of the items in this picture, look below!
Three
Reagan tells the funniest stories and when I hear one begin, I try to get it on video. This one about the scary homingos is so funny. She is a riot and cracks us up daily. Just in case you need a laugh today!
Four
As I said, I am ready for fall…I am shopping for fall and dreaming of cooler weather. I am pretty much obsessed with these puffer vests. I mean the camp, herringbone and check! So much cuteness!!!!
Five
If you are looking for the most flattering dress ever, I believe I found it. I love this dress so much that I think I’m going to buy it in another color! Don’t you love when you find clothing items like that? You love it, so you buy it in all the colors?
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I hope you have a fabulous weekend! I am going to be enjoying our “cold front” and relaxing!

Fall Essentials for The Busy Mom

Happy Friday!!!!

I have been a tad MIA this week with getting bcd into the swing of school!! I will be back next week with lots of fun stuff!!

Today, I am over on Every Day Cheer, where I am a contributor. I am talking about my fall essentials for the busy mom!

Head over to see my picks!!!

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You can see the post here!

Have a fabulous weekend!!!

Labor Day Sales 2014-More!

Happy Labor Day Monday!!!

I posted this sale roundup the other day, but since then an amazing sale has been added at J.Crew. I mean amazing. If there is anything you are wishing for, today is the day!

30% off your purchase of $125 or more with code 24HOURS. It’s today only, so shop now!! Free shipping today too!!!

Ps I received these flats for my birthday and love them!!

B1267_ED1203 Here are a few more sales that you just can’t miss today!!!

My beloved Nordstrom is having a 40% off Clearance Sale! There is some gooood stuff on sale! I always say, when Nordies has a sale, they do it right!! Here are my top picks!

My other fave, Anthropologie is having an extra 20% off sale items right now and there is some awesome stuff on sale. Add in the 20% off and it’s an even better deal! Here are a few of my faves!

J.Crew is having an extra 40% off sale items, plus free shipping on all orders placed 8/29 through 8/31!

Furbish Studio is one of my fave places! They are having a 15% off everything sale 8/29 through 9/1. Use code ENDOFSUMMER to snag some awesome items!!

Lulu and Georgia is having a huge 25% off everything sale! Use code laborday25 to save on these awesome items!!

Sephora is having a fab summer sendoff sale! Up to 75% off items!!

Hayden Reis, my favorite sailcloth tote bags, is having a 15% off $150 or more, using code LABORDAY14. You can also shop their sale section for up to 60% off certain styles, including two of our favorite totes! We have and love this tote and this tote! Talk about the perfect Christmas gift!!!

Other sales you MUST checkout this weekend:

Shopbop

Old Navy (up to 50% off EVERYTHING!)

Nasty Gal

Gap (EVERYTHING is up to 40% off!)

Sheinside

Baublebar-Jewlery Styles starting at 50% off!

Happy Shopping!!!

Labor Day 2014 Sales

Labor Day weekend is here! To me that means two things!

One: School starts next week. I have mixed feelings on this one!

Two: Huge sales all over the place! No mixed feelings on this! This is the best!!!

Everyone loves a good sale, right?

I know I do!

Here are a few sales this weekend that you just can’t miss!

My beloved Nordstrom is having a 40% off Clearance Sale! There is some gooood stuff on sale! I always say, when Nordies has a sale, they do it right!! Here are my top picks!

My other fave, Anthropologie is having an extra 20% off sale items right now and there is some awesome stuff on sale. Add in the 20% off and it’s an even better deal! Here are a few of my faves!

J.Crew is having an extra 40% off sale items, plus free shipping on all orders placed 8/29 through 8/31!

Furbish Studio is one of my fave places! They are having a 15% off everything sale 8/29 through 9/1. Use code ENDOFSUMMER to snag some awesome items!!

Lulu and Georgia is having a huge 25% off everything sale! Use code laborday25 to save on these awesome items!!

Sephora is having a fab summer sendoff sale! Up to 75% off items!!

Hayden Reis, my favorite sailcloth tote bags, is having a 15% off $150 or more, using code LABORDAY14. You can also shop their sale section for up to 60% off certain styles, including two of our favorite totes! We have and love this tote and this tote! Talk about the perfect Christmas gift!!!

Other sales you MUST checkout this weekend:

Shopbop

Old Navy (up to 50% off EVERYTHING!)

Nasty Gal

Gap (EVERYTHING is up to 40% off!)

Sheinside

Baublebar-Jewlery Styles starting at 50% off!

So much great stuff on sale right now!!! Hooray!!! Seems like the perfect time to start Christmas shopping, don’t you agree?!

I leave you with this picture of my little lady and her awesome lipstick job.

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She is wearing this color!

I hope you have a fabulous weekend! We are ready to hang and watch some football! School starts next week, so we are savoring the last few days of no schedule or wakeup time!

Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese in Mason Jars

It’s no secret that I love cooking in mason jars and drinking out of mason jars. I swear, everything tastes better in a mason jar. It’s a fact.

I have a gluten sensitivity, which means sometimes I can eat it and have no issue and sometimes I eat it and regret it.

I have not completely cut it out of my diet. I just can’t. But, I have tried to make small changes here and there. I have been making homemade macaroni and cheese in mason jars for a few years now and decided to attempt it with gluten free noodles a few months ago. No one that I served it to could tell that they were gluten free noodles. These little jars were a delicious addition to a BBQ, plus, just toss a lid on top and save them for leftovers for a few days. These little mason jars full of goodness have become a staple in our casa for BBQs!

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Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese in Mason Jars

Recipe adapted from my fave, The Pioneer Woman-Go here for the recipe details!

4 cups Gluten Free Noodles (I love this brand the best!)
1 whole Egg, Beaten
1/4 cup (1/2 Stick Or 4 Tablespoons) Butter
1/4 cup Gluten Free All-purpose Flour (Cup4Cup is my fave!)
2-1/2 cups Nonfat Milk (original recipe uses whole milk)
2 teaspoons Dry Mustard
1 pound Grated Cheese
1/2 teaspoon Salt, More To Taste
1/2 teaspoon Seasoned Salt, More To Taste
1/2 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
Gluten Free Breadcrumbs (optional to top with)

*Head over to The Pioneer Woman’s site for the details on how to make the sauce, etc. My details for how to finish the recipe are below!

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To finish the recipe:

Mix the cheese sauce and noodles together in one large pan. Scoop the mixture into the 4 oz. mason jars. I use this cupcake scooper to do this. Top with some grated cheese and breadcrumbs (gluten free) and bake at 350 degrees on a baking sheet for about 30 minutes.

Enjoy!!

If you loved this recipe, you should try my gluten free lemon bar in a jar recipe and my gluten free shortcakes recipe!

Check out a few of my favorite cooking utensils that I used to make this recipe!

Fancy Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! I am super excited for this weekend because tomorrow is my birthday!!! Woohoo!!! So excited!!!!

Today I am linking up my fancy Friday favorites with Andrea, Erika and Narci for Friday Favorites!! I am excited to join these sweet gals today!

Momfessionals
One
First things first! These glasses are the bomb.com. I love them. You have told me you love them! They’ve been the best and I pretty much wear them constantly!
Polarized Aviator with Green Lens
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This shirt is on huge time sale too!! In fact, all sale items are an extra 20% off right now at Anthropologie! Seriously, there are some ahhhmazing sales right now! You can find my jeans here and my sandals here (these are 25% off too!).
And then I saw this pair and I immediately knew they needed to join the sunglasses collection.
Gold Polarized Aviators Both pairs of glasses 25% off right now with code SHOPNOW, so if you want them, now is the time!
Two
Next up, if you missed my post yesterday, I shared my 31 things for my 20 year old self. You find find the post here! When I turned 30 last year, I wrote a letter of things I wish I could go back and tell my 20 year old self and I have decided to add to it each year for my birthday!
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We had fam bam pictures taken while we were in California last month and I just love them! This is a fave of mine!
Three
Teddy and Reagan are SOOOO ready for Halloween! We rock the skeleton PJs all year, but they are SO ready for costumes and candy! Teddy will be a super hero of some sort…one day it’s Batman, the next it’s Spiderman! Reagan is all over the place with her costume choices. She says she might just be Princess Reagan again, which is what she was last year. We shall see!
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Four
It’s no secret that Reagan and I love a good hair accessory! We are huge fans of headbands of all types! My friend Kim, who runs Oh Sweet Joy has some super cute headbands is giving you all 10% off your purchase with the code FANCYASHLEY! Woohoo!! Head over and check to all her fun items!!!
Here is Reagan is her newest headband that Kim sent us! She loves it!
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Five
And because fall is on the horizon, let’s talk fall candles! What is your favorite fall scent? The Pumpkin Soufflé candle that I buy at Anthro is my favorite, but I am always looking for new ones and I would love to hear your faves!
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Don’t forget to check out the Anthropologie sale items! They are an extra 20% off!!!
Cheers to the weekend!!!!

31 things for my 20 year old self

I wrote this post last year to my 20 year old self last August 2013 and decided that I will add a thing or two, each year to it, for my birthday, because, let’s face it, we grow a lot and learn a lot each year. Oh, and my birthday is Saturday and I am turning the big 3-1!

Last year, I turned the big 3-0. It’s funny, because it really isn’t that life changing of a year. I mean, you get older, yes…, but life changing? No. When Reagan was a few months old, this gal told me that I had no idea what life was and my life wouldn’t even begin until I was 30. Married and two kids in, I found the statement ignorant and comical at the same time. I’m happy to say that my life began way before I turned 30 and this past year has been full of ups and downs, highs and lows, just like the rest of my years. It has been a pretty life changing year for my family in certain aspects, but a move would have been life changing at 30 years old or 12 years old. It’s funny because last year around my birthday is when we first made our decision to move and here I sit, writing this post, in my kitchen, in my house, in Texas! I still wake up some mornings and miss California…especially with this insane humidity that we are having right now (hello sauna outside!), but all in all, this move has been the right choice for our family and that’s what matters.

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Here is my letter to me:

Dear Me,

1. Don’t worry so much because, I promise you what lies ahead is way better than you could ever imagine.

2. Do what you love. Even if no one supports you. The people who love you and believe in you will support you in every endeavor.

3. You will be set up on a blind date and you will end up marrying that amazing godly man.

4. He will be your biggest supporter and your best friend. When I say biggest supporter, I mean it. He will cheer you on in anything you chose to do.

5. Dance like no one is watching. Ignore the people who laugh at your dance moves. Just enjoy yourself and have fun. That’s all that matters.

6. Pray without ceasing.

7. Always follow YOUR dreams.

8. Never let anyone bully you and guilt you into staying in their life. If it’s not working for you, then it’s just not and you don’t owe an explanation.

9. True friends are just that, true friends. You will only get a few in your lifetime, but they will be there for you always.

10. Do the things you want to do. The time wasted sitting around making excuses as to why you can’t do them, is time that could have been used doing said things.

11. Being a mom will be the hardest and most rewarding job ever. It’s never easy but it will be the best thing you’ll ever do.

12. You will do nothing with your college major. You will spend lots of years wondering if you should have and that’s okay because you still can.

13. You will move all over the place in the next ten years and you will have some great experiences and meet some amazing people.

14. You will teach yourself lots of new skills that you’ve always wanted to learn.

15. You and your sister will have kids around the same ages and this will be one of the greatest things. Seeing them all interact with each other and seeing how they love each other so much will be priceless.

16. Do not put so much stock in what certain people think of you. There will always be certain people trying to bring you down. Hold your head high and “keep on keeping on.”

17. Lots of amazing things will happen and also lots of tragic and tough things will happen. Remember to hold onto your faith. It’s hard at times, but knowing there is someone out there with a plan for YOU and YOUR life, will get you through.

18. You will always love pink and glitter. (duh)

19. You will begin watching the show Frasier and you will watch it every night and it will be key in helping you fall asleep.

20. You will always laugh a lot…even through the hard times.

21. You will always struggle not taking things to heart, whether it be an attack on you personally or an attack on your business. It will always be hard for you, but remember that you have lots of people cheering for you. They are who matter.

22. ALWAYS trust your instincts. More often than not, they will be right.

23. Always trust your mom’s instincts too. She has been right about soooo many things!

24. It’s okay to cry. Most times, after a good cry, you’ll feel better.

25. Eat dessert. Eat cheeseburgers. Life is too short to count calories constantly.

26. People will let you down. That’s just part of life.

27. Even on the hardest day when you think you can’t take anymore, remember to be thankful for ALL your blessings.

28. Always take lots of pictures even if it makes your hubby crazy! :)

29. Treat each day like a special occasion.

30. Don’t let fear control you.

ps…Wear sunscreen. Seriously, get in the habit now…it’s a good one.

Added August 2014

31. Moving is hard. Duh. You will realize (and remember from when you were growing up) that no matter where you are, what city or state you live in, as long as you are with your immediate family (though you’ll miss the parents, sibs, friends and grandparents like crazy), you are home and you’ll be okay. Some days will be harder than others and you’ll wish you were somewhere else, but take heart, better days are coming. You

ps…read number 16. and number 21. like a million times. There will come times that you’ll need that advice a lot.

Love,

Me