Life: Oceanside

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Shop Small Selections: StaticGrey

If  I could shop small tiny shops that are filled with handmade items made by big dreaming, hard working business owners...I totally would.
I am not a "big box" store kind of person. (besides Target, of course)
I love exploring my city and finding all the little hidden gems that are owned by a mom and pop, husband and wife, single hard working mamas, and big dreaming daddies trying to bring home the bacon to feed their families by following their dreams.

This blog of mine is a place to share my heart, but I also like to utilize it as a good platform to share some of my favorite little handmade shops and their awesome stories of success.

Today I am honored to share the amazing shop of StaticGrey.

StaticGrey is a shop based out of Michigan that is owned and operated by a husband and wife, Josh and Jesse Rogers.
The idea of their adorable shop and all of their designs is inspired by their adorable son. They make every item by hand in the comfort of their own home which allows them to follow their hearts, their dreams, and their passions all while loving up on their adorable babes all day long.
Talk about #dreamgoals!

We favor a few of their designs, two of our favorites being "Mama Loves Target"

StaticGrey and I are teaming up over on Instagram to give YOU the chance to win a free t-shirt design of your choice! You can head over to StaticGrey's Instagram for all the directions on how to win!  Also, you can use code "HALLIE" to get 20% off your order!

Toddler Essentials: Life on The Go

I think one thing that I have been totally thankful for in moving from the "infant" to "toddler" phase is the weight I carry around in my diaper bag.

We all remember the infant days where we needed a blanket, 3 pairs of clothes, 30 diapers, wipes, pacifiers, breastfeeding cover, car seat cover, spit up cloth, and pretty much the same amount of items you would take on a 10 day trip for yourself would last you about an hour trip with your baby.

Now that Hudson has turned 1, it seems that over the past few months the "necessities" that are needed in my diaper bag have drastically declined.
These are the things you can now find my comfortably toting in my diaper bag.

1) Diapers and Wipes.
Um, Always,
Mostly wipes because I feel like my kid is full of dirt, sand, sweat from the overwhelming Florida heat, and everything else little boys are made of at all hours of the day. So wipes, are my home girl, for diapers, well that is just obvious.

2) Diaper Changing Pad.
I am a total germ-a-phobe, I really cannot ever imagine putting my child on a public changing table, so this is a necessity. Like, always.

3) Extra Change of Clothes
If the mess of sand, dirt, sweat, or leftover lunch are just too much for the wipes we head to plan B and change our entire outfit. Gotta stay fly and fresh. Never know when the Mamarazi will strike. #toddlerlife

4) Sippy Cups.
We are just starting to become keen on sippy cups, and I am also FINALLY convincing my child that water is for the cool kids, however, it's still a work in progress.

5) Healthy Snacks
Um, don't ever underestimate the power of snacks.
They are delicious, they are healthy, AND they keep the mouth busy.
We are in the "finding the power of our voice" phase, not quite understanding the phase "inside voice" means as of yet, and we seem to find it all incredibly hilarious.
Lil' Beanies has been my secret snack weapon lately, and it makes Target visits MUCH more ear friendly, for not only us, but all the other Target patrons as well.

We usually have two snacks a day one between breakfast and lunch, and one after his afternoon nap. I really try to make his meals, as well as his snacks as healthy as can be. However packing fresh grapes, strawberries, bananas are not always convenient, nor are they always the cleanest option for grabby fingers. 
Hudson is VERY independent and likes to feed himself, so small, handheld foods are my go-to. Most of the time these come in the form of fruit/veggie pouches. However, I don't like to limit him to just ONE option, how fun is that?
I was SO excited when we discovered Gerber's Lil' Beanies. They are made from navy beans, which provide a good source of protein and fiber with every bite.
Another selling point for me is they do not used genetically modified ingredients, there is no levels of high sugar, and not a ridiculous amount of carbs, which are usually 3 things you find with most hand held snacks.
It has been such a blessing (and a life saver) to not only have a healthy snack to take on the go, but to have something that Hudson can utilize to keep his hands and the use of his high pitched voice busy to make for shopping trips, car rides, and park visits MUCH more enjoyable for the both of us. 

Dear Son; Lead the Way

Dear Son,

In the past few weeks the world has been covered by dark clouds of mass shootings, hate crimes, attempted abductions, and a lack of justice for those who deserve it most. Though these things are not out of the normal, we seem to hear about them more and more.

In all this I know I have a voice as to how I feel and what I want to do to change the world, but the only person I feel I should express my opinions to, is you.
Though you are too young to understand any of this, one day you will read this, and I hope my words will hit you deep in your heart, as these events have hit deep in mine.

See all of these horrible things that I listed above have two things in common with each other. Hate and entitlement.
These are things that we as humans are not born with, these are things as humans that we are taught.
We are taught these things from the media and the social outlets, we learn from our peers, we learn from our teaches, but most importantly most everything we learn in life, we learn from our parents.

So Today I wanted to make a promise to you, that in this world I WILL  make a difference, and my biggest difference I will make is you.

You are so young, and you have yet to know about these things that fill our beautiful world with so much hate, and for that I am thankful, but I know one day you will see these events and you will have a choice.
You can choose to turn a blind eye and pretend it isn't happening, as some of us do, or you can find your voice, and you can use it.
I will not lie, there have been times when I have turned off the TV, because I would rather pretend these things don't exists, than let my heart hurt in hearing about them.
However, this is the biggest part of the problem. If we all walk around and pretend that our world isn't falling apart, that we turn a blind eye that our foundation is crumbling, the world will than fall out from beneath us, and it will be too late to save it.

Hate is everywhere, but hate is small, hate is weak. Hate is heavy, and hate is hard to carry. So those who carry so much of it are easy to see. These people were taught to hate, they were taught to turn away from what is different to them. These people were taught to destruct the small minded world they live in as they do not know right from wrong. These people were taught that no matter what is happening around them, they are right, and they do no wrong.

You my son, will not be one of these people.

I promise to teach you only love. I promise to teach you patience, and kindness. I promise to install manners, trust, acceptance, and joy in your heart.
Because I want you to LOVE with all of your heart. I want you to accept that you are not entitled to anything or any person in this world. I want you to accept every lifestyle, every race, every religion, every person for who they are, not what you think defines them.
You are not entitled to choose a label for someone as that is not your job.
You are not allowed to judge someone, as you have never walked in their shoes.
Your respect is to be earned by being respectful yourself.
Your patience should be given even when someone doesn't deserve it.
These are simple tasks that will someday be done without you even thinking about it.
Love will define you, love will be just who you are.
It won't be a challenge to be nice or respectful, it will just come naturally.

It is my duty as your mother, as your guardian, and I hope as your "hero" to show you these things through practice of my own words.

This world of hate will never change there will still be small minded people who teach and who preach these ugly words of nonacceptance, but the heavy weight of hate can be overcome with the weightless acceptance of love, always.

So my sweet son. When you do come across an ugly path of hate, just remember that it can change, starting with you.
You can be the change, you can make the change. Thought the change may be small it's aftershock will move mountains.

Hate will start with a bully on the playground, and it will only get worse from there, but the more you teach love and respect, the less power hate will gain.

This world is scary, and it scares me for you, but I know in my heart of hearts that you will be strong, you will be special, and you, along with your generation, will change this world.