Favorites for left-over decoration pumpkins

Pumpkin season is over and you are left with all those beautiful pumpkin that you got to decorate for the holidays, now what? Most of us just put them in the compost. But why not have them live to their full potential and use them for some yummy dinner or desserts?

Today I’ll be sharing how I use my left-over pumpkins for a delicious, warm, creamy (without any cream) soup and for some yummy pumpkin pie.

Creamy Pumpkin Soup

When roasting your pumpkin, if you’re going to use it for a savory dish, feel free to add olive oil and salt and pepper. If you’re using it for a sweet dessert, feel free to roast as is.

* feel free to add more broth if you prefer your soup to be more soupy instead of a cream*

*Pumpkin Seeds*

*you can always make these your own by adding your favorite seasoning like cayenne pepper, if you like them spicy*

Pumpkin Pie

For my pies, I like to use Alton Brown’s pie crust recipe, but you should feel free to use your favorite, or even use store bought, whatever is best for you!

These are a few of my favorite things!

Favorite eco-friendly…on-the-go.

As I mentioned in my previous post, this year I had the goal to be more eco-friendly, meaning I would have little to no paper products and no single use items. It has been a difficult journey as I’ve had adjust many things in my life. Today I will share with you my eco-friendly journey on-the-go. This part are of my journey has been on the easier side for me. All of the products are super compact and easy to travel with, therefore easier to remember to use!

This is one is FinalStraw. This is a super cute, super practical straw! I love that they come in different colors, different colored cases compact cases and that they come with a super practical cleaning wand. Making it super easy to make sure I keep it in my bag!

*use my code ELLIEF10 at check out for a special discount!*

Stasher bags have become a staple in our house. This bags are great replacement for the everyday plastic bag. There different colors and sizes make it so easy to personalize each of my kiddos lunch or even for a quick trip to the park. Stasher is also great for road trips, camping and hiking. You can easily put them in the dishwasher and have them ready for your next adventure!

If you like to bring your reusable cup when you go to your favorite coffee shop, but don’t like the bulky-ness of them -me!- these Stojo cups are key! They are collapsable cups that will fit nicely in your bag or purse. Stojo has a nice selection of size and color that will fit your coffee needs and your personality.

These are a few of my favorite things!

Favorites for self-care.

Todays post will be a little different since it won’t contain any products that I like and it will be more about things I need.

This week has been one of those weeks. A week where there were days when I didn’t feel like doing much. A week where I just didn’t have the energy for it. Now, I’ve always had days like this here and there, after a hard week at work, o after not getting enough sleep. So here we are. Time to take care of ourselves. For some of us thats not an easy task.

I started my self-care week by having my husband help with making dinner and some lunches. Now I know this might seem simple, but sometimes not having to think about making food allows me to read, take a shower, or even just catch up on my favorite show and regain mental space.

Another day, my husband took the kids to the park so I could have uninterrupted alone time. For me, that translates into loud music and deep cleaning. Yes, I am one of those that likes to clean when having a rough day. And this week I took my time to deep clean my kitchen. A lot of times just seeing my house clean gives me the sanity and clarity I need.

Last, but definitely not least and probably the hardest thing, I had to do this week was to be kind and patient with myself. It was hard to not put pressure on myself to do all the laundry that wasn’t getting done, or to clean the dishes that weren’t getting cleaned while I was taking time for myself. It’s hard for me to let these things go. Especially when I do get back to having the energy to do them I usually add more pressure on myself thinking, “I should’ve done those things!”. It’s a vicious circle, but we have to try to treat ourselves kindly. After all, we are still growing adults.

So just remember that it is okay to have a rough day, week, or month; we all have them. Let’s bounce back!

Hopefully you’ll share your favorite things for self-care!

These are a few of my favorite things!

Favorite eco-friendly…while shopping.

This year I decided to make my house as eco-friendly as possible. That means, little to no paper usage and no single use items. This can be a tough task and a goal that you can move towards slowly. So I will be sharing this transition in a couple of post. Today I will share some of my favorite products to help me be eco-friendly while at the shopping. Remember, this is a learning process, and there will be times where we won’t be as successful at being green as we would like and that is more than okay!

These produce bags are a great replacement go the plastic bags at the market. They come in different sizes to accommodate your produce needs and each bag shows their weight, so there won’t be any issues at check out. They are easy to wash, and easy to store. I like that they have a drawstring that makes it easy to close and open back up when you’re ready for your produce.

Now, if like me, you too sometimes have unexpected trips to the grocery store and didn’t have your grocery bag with you, then this pocket bags are for you! These bags are reusable, washable and fold into a really cute, small, portable pocket. I usually keep one in my purse and a couple in my car, that way I’m always prepared.

Now this last bag is my favorite bag! I don’t just use it for groceries, but for everything. Trip to the beach? bring it. Trip to friends pool? bring it. Trip to the farmers market? bring it. When I found Apolis bags, I knew I needed them. Not only are they cute, customizable bags but they also follow the model of Advocacy Through Industry, which is a model based on the idea that people can live better lives when they are given equal access to the global marketplace.

These are a few of my favorite things!

Favorites for the morning

We all have our morning routine. Mine usually starts with me opening my eyes to both of my kids staring at me waiting to ask if they can have a snack. Even if somedays they already have said snack on their hands.

Once the snack situation is settled I need my morning fuel. That’s where my coffee machine comes in. I recently purchased the Breville Barista Touch Espresso Maker. My coffee of choice is a latte (and make it a double). I make one at least twice a day and this Breville has been amazing. The coffee comes out a perfect, velvety texture. I like that this is a smarter coffee machine that you can customize and save your preferences with my name for both the coffee and the milk. I want to be able to drink my coffee right away, so my ideal milk temperature is a warm 130°F. You can set different favorites for the people in your home, so everyone gets to have coffee their favorite way. This Breville has been great for all my coffee needs and fits perfectly in my little nook.

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My morning spot

Now, if your needs are a little different and you don’t need to make a coffee to go with every meal, you might be looking for something smaller and maybe a little simpler. If thats the case, I would recommend the Delonghi Dedica 15-Bar Pump Espresso Machine. Its very slim, so won’t take that much counter space and it will still give you a very delicious coffee. This is the one I had before switching to the Breville and I only changed it because after 3 wonderful years, it retired. Otherwise I would’ve kept it around.

If lattes are not your preference, but you like coffee a latte and you’re looking to have a big ol’ pot of hot coffee in the morning, then I recommend the Breville Precision Brewer. I still like to keep this one at arms reach. I bring this one out when I have people over (yes, I have two coffee makers; yes, I might have a coffee problem) as it makes 12 cups of coffee in just a couple of minutes. It also makes Cold Brew for those hot summer days!

Once the coffee is done and I’ve gotten my sanity recharged, I can get the kids to school and run my errands.

Hopefully these finds will make your morning routine a little easier, and tastier.

What does your morning look like?

These are a few of my favorite things!

Who even is she?

Hi y’all! My name is Ellie and I am a stay-at-home mom. I live in the Pacific Northwest with my husband, my two kids (a 9 year old boy and a 4 year old girl), and my two Labrador girls. We lead a pretty busy (and crowded) life so things that I buy need to help.

I love to find new things that will make my life easier. Eco friendly things, things for my dogs or kids, and, heck, even things for my husband. I realize not everyone has the time – or wants to take the time – to compare products so I decided to create this blog to to share some of my favorite things. Not everything I buy ends up being worth it, and I’ll be sharing those, too.

I am not a writer so bear with me. I hope you follow along and that this blog helps you find things that also make your life much easier, too!

Favorites to keep them entertained

It has been a year! We’ve had to adjust the way the kids were taught and how they got entertained! We live in a pretty small house, but we are lucky enough to have a decent backyard. This year that backyard had to become our park, our sports center, and on nice day it even became our movie theater.

My favorite thing we added to our backyard has been our trampoline. I came across a trampoline company called Springfree Trampoline. As the name says they are spring free – they use flexible rods – making it safer and, in my opinion, less terrifying! They are built to be all weather resistant. My kids even like to go jumping in the when it snows. We had a funny space in out back yard where we wanted to put the trampoline, it’s not quite circular. I was happy to discover that Springfree Trampoline had an oval shape that fit perfectly. We also bought the step ladder since we have a toddler that changes her mind about getting on or off the trampoline all the time. Later on, as an add on, we purchased the Sunshade accessory, to prevent the trampoline from getting too hot in the summers.

As fall approaches and extracurricular sports are still closed I had to find a new way to keep them exercising – gotta burn up that tween and toddler energy. I came across a soccer ball from Dribble Up. This is a smart soccer ball that helps with their technique, agility and is just plain fun! With Dribble Up, all you have to do is set up an account, and you can have up to 5 family member, this gives you access to a long list of drills. My kids have been loving it, its so fun and they feel like they’re getting away with something, and for me, they get to move and stay active. It has also been a great incentive before they get to play video games. My husband and I have also tried it a couple of times and have really enjoyed it. Its fun for the whole family!

These are a few of my favorite things!