A Summertime Trip to the Rockies

A couple of weeks ago, we took a 10 day trip to Colorado. The kids and I spent most of the trip in Summit County, at 9,000+ feet elevation, right in the middle of the Rockies. Robbie spent half the trip up there with us (and his parents and brother’s family), and the other half working at Red Rocks outside of Morrison, where the band did a 3-night show. (The kids and I also went down to Red Rocks for a couple of the nights, which was a special treat.)

I used to live in Leadville (fairly close to where we stayed), and this part of the country holds some magical memories for me. The people in my life who I consider to be my best friends in the world were met during my time living there. And it’s truly one of the most physically beautiful places in the world. It was really wonderful to see some of my dearest friends, and to spend so much time with Robbie’s family as well. The kids had so much fun hanging out with their cousins. It was an easy, comfortable trip (well, aside from the flights with Emmett, who thinks sitting still on an airplane is the worst idea ever – but that’s a whole different story to tell).

This was also one of the only trips I’ve taken in the last few years where I took a real chunk of time off work. I’m so grateful for that time I had to recharge in such a tranquil place – especially because the morning after we returned home, one of my best friends in the world passed away after a year long battle with ALS. It was intense and beautiful to have just been in the place where he and I first met 23 years ago, less than a day before we had to say goodbye.

I miss living in the Colorado high country, but I also know that where we are now is where we’re meant to be. We hope to make this summertime trip to the mountains an annual thing though. It’s nice to get that mountain fix and then come back to home sweet home.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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Seeking Inspiration

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The last couple of weeks have been emotionally intense for me. I’ve felt very anxious. And over the years, when this happens, I find that one of the “solutions” (besides breathing and practicing mindfulness, which honestly do help me) is to just seek out things that bring me inspiration on some level. I don’t have the time or freedom these days to do that by getting in a car and driving across the country like I did in my 20s, but I’m fortunate enough to have a phone and computer and outlets like Pinterest to provide images of things that feel inspiring to me. Today I thought I’d share some of them with you. If you’re in need of a little inspiration, I hope they help you too.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

I have been compensated by the JOHNSON’S® Brand for this post; however, I am sharing my own thoughts. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help male Bubby and Bean possible.

It’s no secret that one of my greatest joys is finding ways to use my little ones’ baby and kid products for other uses. This is especially true when it comes to hacking their JOHNSON’S® Baby products for beauty use. I mean, we already have them on hand, they’re super gentle on skin, and they’re affordable – it’s a no brainer. It’s kind of exciting when you realize how many ways they can be used in place of expensive beauty products. Today I’m sharing with you 10 super cool beauty hacks you can do using JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil, JOHNSON’S Baby HEAD TO TOE™ Cleansing Cloths, and JOHNSON’S® Baby Powder. Woohoo!

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

1. Baby oil for taming split ends. I’m telling you guys, there is no better way to tame the ends of your hair than with a little baby oil. I like JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil with Aloe Vera & Vitamin E. I have naturally frizzy hair, which tends to show up the most in the ends. I just squeeze a couple of drops on my fingers and rub into the ends of dry hair, and they immediately look better.

2. Baby oil for removing eye makeup. My mom always used JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil to remove her eye makeup when I was growing up, and as soon as I started using makeup, it became my go-to as well. It even removes waterproof mascara with the swipe of a cotton ball.

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

3. Baby oil for glowing, shimmery legs. I read somewhere that rubbing baby oil on legs is a trick of celebrities to make them look shiny and glowing for events. And I’m telling you guys, it works! I apply a few drops of JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil with Aloe Vera & Vitamin E as soon as I get out of the shower while my legs are still wet.

4. Baby oil as a body scrub. Mixing JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil with some sugar and a couple of drops of essential oil makes an instant (and super softening) exfoliating body scrub.

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

5. Baby oil as a cuticle moisturizer. My cuticles get dry so easily, but I’ve found that rubbing a couple of drops of JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil into them before bed keeps them soft and under control. It can also be used for touch ups to remove excess nail polish from your skin when doing at home manicures and pedicures.

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

6. Baby cleansing cloths for quick skin clean up. When you have two little kids and spend a lot of time outside chasing after them, you get dirty fast. I carry a container of JOHNSON’S Baby HEAD TO TOE™ Cleansing Cloths in my purse everywhere I go – they’re a life saver for quick skin clean ups. They’re also great for feeling fresh after a flight or long road trip.

7. Baby cleansing clothes to remove hair dye from skin. The older I get, the more often I’m touching up my grey roots at home. (SIGH.) Because I am far from an expert colorist, I always get excess dye on my forehead and cheeks. With a gentle scrub of a JOHNSON’S Baby HEAD TO TOE™ Cleansing Cloth, I’m good to go in seconds.

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

8. Baby cleansing clothes for on-the-go makeup remover. When I’m traveling, I always bring a package of JOHNSON’S Baby HEAD TO TOE™ Cleansing Cloths to use to remove my makeup at night. So much easier than carting around all of my cleansers! (And so handy for quickly removing dirt and food from my kids’ faces too!)

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

9. Baby powder as a dry shampoo. A dear friend taught me this trick when we were at a festival in Yosemite years ago and didn’t have access to a shower every day. JOHNSON’S® Baby Powder (I love the Calming Lavender variety) is made from pure cornstarch (no talc!) and with a few shakes and a brush through, my hair feels clean and is full of volume. One of my all time favorite beauty hacks!

10. Baby powder to keep eye makeup in place. I give my eyelids a quick swipe of a little JOHNSON’S® Baby Powder after applying shadow and liner, and my makeup is set in place all day long.

10 Awesome Beauty Hacks Using Baby Products

If you have any other beauty hacks you love using baby products, please share! And if you’d like to try any of these yourself, head over to your local Walmart (we get ours there, in the baby product aisle inside of the kids’ section) and grab some JOHNSON’S® Baby products of your own!



If someone is reporting an adverse event or a product quality complaint, please tell them to call the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) North America Consumer Care Center at 800-361-8068 during normal business hours of operation: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. After normal business hours, they can report adverse events or product quality complaints through www.jnj.com Contact Us page.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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Here’s why you spend so long on hold

The Poodle (and Dog) Blog

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A Heartfelt Thank You + Some Links I Love

First of all, I wanted to say huge thanks to everyone who read my posts about the loss of my best friend (and accompanying thoughts on being a blogger for a living during difficult times) last week, on my social accounts, and also here on the blog. The combined comments, emails, and DMs I received was close to a thousand. If I did not reply to you directly, please know that I did read your message, and I am deeply grateful for it. I love you guys. I really do.

Second, and on a much lighter note, if you haven’t seen my post from yesterday with our laundry room remodel reveal, please check it out! I have genuinely never been more proud of a project. This was our first big DIY project in our first owned home, and because we literally did everything ourselves, we learned so much. I really, really love the way it turned out too. It’s my favorite room in our house, by far. I hope you’ll take a minute to read it (and look at the huge difference in the before and after photos!), and let me know your thoughts!

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a Links I Love post, and they’re usually reserved for Fridays. But I’ve had a lot of insomnia over the last week that has resulted in random internet wandering (which admittedly has been a helpful distraction from the hard stuff), and have come across some cool and interesting things that I’m sharing with you today. So here we go:

This article on the hunt for the world’s rarest pasta was a fun distraction.

My mother in law has flown here to do Chicago’s ALS Walk for Life the past several years (she just lost a close friend to ALS as well). I think I’ll be putting together a team to walk in honor of my Goki as well.

I admittedly only listen to a handful of the same bands (I’m so not cool anymore), but this list of 7 new albums you have to hear now via NPR music has me intrigued. Stoked to see Cowboy Junkies on the list.

This tube style maxi dress (shown in top image) is making all my midsummer dreams come true. I really, really want it.

Guys, the time has come to reconcile with the honeydew wedge.

I’m normally not a sneaker person but I’m pretty sure I need a pair of these stat.

This little girl’s dress I found on Etsy is so sweet. I may have to grab it for Essley.

According to this article, only 57 immigrant children under the age of 5 have been reunited with their parents after being separated at the border. Heartbreaking.

29 styles of pizza, YES PLEASE.

I am really feeling this moon and star barrette.

I grew up with two kids in our family, and I have two kids of my now (and we are done). So this piece on the extinction of the middle child was very interesting to me, having never experienced that in a family myself.

Thinking about replacing all my sofa cushion covers with these pretty jacquard pieces.

This piece with photos on mismatched and/or uncomfortable things made me laugh so hard. I am an incredibly disorganized person, but I still shuddered (and or cracked up) at some of the images.

Thank you again for your continued support and kindness. I appreciate every single one of you.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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My Favorite Summertime Snack On the Go

Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible. This post is in partnership with California Almonds, but all opinions are my own.

Shocker, Melissa is posting about snacks! It’s no secret I have an affinity for snacks. Most of the recipes I post here are snack related, and I’m also constantly gushing about how I’m grazing on snacks throughout the day.

But there happens to be a snack I love so much, a snack that is so simple and so perfect for summer no matter where you are and what you’re doing, that I’m devoting an entire post to it. And yes, this post is sponsored. But it’s not an ad. It’s a love letter. Anyone who knows me in real life can attest to the fact that I never, ever leave my house without almonds. And anyone who reads here knows that I include almonds in recipes I share all the time. So it only makes sense that I share with you guys why almonds are my favorite summertime snack, at home and on-the-go.

First let’s talk about the why. In short, almonds taste freaking delicious, they’re really healthy, and they’re super convenient. I incorporate almonds into my smoothies, oatmeal, salads, and baked goods, and I make nut butter and nut milk from them. But I also take them with me everywhere, especially in the summertime when I’m outdoors a lot chasing my kids and need to maintain my energy. They’re full of protein and fiber which sustains me. They allow me to consume something quick and without thought that isn’t full of empty calories. (In fact, a recent study shows that a handful of almonds provides up to 25% fewer calories than previously thought!*) And they’re packed full of nutrition. One ounce of almonds is a great source of vitamin E and magnesium, contains 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber, and is a source of calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron. Did I mention all of the good, healthy unsaturated fats? I mean really, there’s no arguing that almonds are the perfect snack.

*Novotny JA, Gebauer SK, Baer DJ. Discrepancy between the Atwater factor predicted and empirically measured energy values of almonds in human diets. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2012; 96(2):296-301.

Now let’s talk about the how – specifically how I keep almonds on me at all times. In terms of convenience, it’s pretty obvious. Almonds are small and fit anywhere, they’re not messy, and you can eat just one or a handful depending on how hungry you are. I usually keep a whole bag of them in my car, but I also have several reusable containers of them in various bags depending on activities.

I throw a container of almonds in our beach bag when we go to the pool or the beach. I’ve yet to find a more practical snack for pool days! I almost always have a container of them in my purse. Whether I’m running errands or attending work meetings, it’s really nice to be able to munch on a handful of almonds when I’m hungry. I take almonds with us when we go hiking or are out exploring nature. I pack almonds in our carry on luggage when we fly (we leave the day after tomorrow for a long trip to Colorado and yes, I already have my almonds ready to go), and in our bags when we go on summertime road trips. I even throw a little bag of almonds in my pocket when we walk up to the local park.

I also always put a container of almonds into Essley’s lunch/snack bags for activities and camps. My kids love them as much as I do! And that makes me happy, because almonds keep them full between meals, and are packed with protein, fiber and healthy fat, but are low in sugar. You can’t ask for a better snack for your little ones.

There you have it friends: my ode to the ultimate summertime snack on the go. If you’re a California almonds fan like I am, I would love to hear the ways you enjoy them while you’re out and about in the summer!

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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Saying Goodbye to a Best Friend (+ Feelings On Being An ‘Influencer’ In Difficult Times)

Saying Goodbye to a Best Friend (+ Feelings On Being An 'Influencer' In Sad Times)

When I posted back on July 2nd about taking a break while we were in the mountains of Colorado, I fully intended on the blog being nice and full this week. I did share a really fun post about my favorite summer snack food, but shortly after hitting publish on it, I got a call that my best friend of 23 years, who had been battling ALS since early last year, had just passed away. I knew that call was coming any day now. But it didn’t make it any easier. It hurt really, really bad. I’m crying as I type this, to be honest. I feel very depressed. It sucks. So I just couldn’t post about anything else today (or yesterday) other than what is happening – yet I struggled with whether or not to post this too. And I want to explain why.

I get more emails and messages asking how I became an “influencer” (so not a fan of that term but “blogger” sounds outdated these days) than any other topic. And honestly, I don’t have an answer. It’s not something I planned by any means. I worked in the fashion industry for 14 years as an eco-friendly designer, and then I started this blog as a side project to promote a new Etsy shop I’d opened back in 2010. Much to my surprise, the blog took off more than I ever imagined, and eventually evolved into a full on lifestyle site (which was completely different than how it started). A few years later I had Essley (my first babe), and shortly after that I decided to close the clothing line and work full time on my blog and social media accounts. In the past year and a half, they have become a solid way to support my family. I work a lot, and I work hard, but I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t a really great gig. I get to stay home with my kids and still support them monetarily through creative work. I get to partner with some really great brands. I get some seriously fantastic opportunities for projects and campaigns. There is a lot of work and a lot of reward. I am very grateful.

In times of loss or tragedy, however, I feel torn about how to go about things around here. The weird thing about being an “influencer” (again, not a fan of that term) for a living is that even when you keep the vast majority of your life private (which I do), you want to remain authentic. (Or at least I do, and I know most of my friends in the industry do as well.) Yes, I partner with brands when I tell my stories, but I am always genuine, and I always incorporate my true self. And that makes it really difficult when something really shitty happens in your personal life. Blogs are not journals like they were 10 years ago. But they also aren’t (or at least shouldn’t be, in my opinion) commercials that lack soul or substance. When something like this happens, do I just keep posting and treating this like a job in an effort to be professional, even though my friends and I are heavily grieving? Do I not post at all and just allow myself a break, even if that means risking income my family depends on? Or do I find a place in between, where I am sharing with my followers (who over the years have become friends!) what is going on, and pay tribute to one of the greatest people I ever knew, without getting too personal or crossing a line?

Really, I can’t pinpoint the “right” thing to do when it comes to my weird job in times like these. So I’m just going with my gut. I posted about Goki on my Instagram and Facebook accounts, and I’m also posting here – both because I want to pay tribute to him, and because I felt it would be almost disrespectful to him to pretend things are okay right now. I pushed back some sponsored posts, because even though this is a job, the most important thing in my life right now is focusing on this great loss, and sending all of my love to the beautiful inside and out wife Marissa, absolutely amazing 2 year old daughter Mika (seen in the photo above), and wonderful parents that Goki left behind when his battle came to an end on Wednesday. Because this isn’t about me or my completely insignificant ramblings about what I should share here. It’s about them. His close friends are really hurting right now, but his daughter, wife, and parents are the ones who were really left behind. (I can also confidentially say that Goki would be shaking his head and laughing at me reading this. He always made fun of me for overthinking everything. He was/is a true free spirit. I’m just a wannabe.)

I want to share with you guys something my 4 year old daughter said to me yesterday morning when I woke up: “Mommy, don’t be sad. Goki is fine! When he died yesterday, the universe sent a bubble, and it took him up to the stars, to heaven, and he feels much better. I promise he is so happy! Mika knows this too.” Those were her exact words. And I believe her. He suffered for a long time, and now he is free. If any of your happen to be grieving a loss, I hope her words help you as well.

I’ve been thinking about addressing this subject here for a while, and my mind is so overwhelmed right now that I needed to address it, but I don’t want it to overshadow the main reason I’m posting – and that’s that the world has lost one of the most incredible people I’ve ever known. Goki, thank you for years of adventures together (all over the U.S., Costa Rica, Mexico, the Bahamas, etc. etc. etc.), phone calls that lasted for hours (and always with wine), endless laughs (usually late at night), and for always being so protective of me. I love you forever.

And to all of you, thank you for letting me ramble on with my thoughts, and share pieces of my life and heart here, in between the posts about pretty things and family projects and food and fashion and the things that make life fun but ultimately aren’t nearly as important as relationships and love. In the end, those are the ONLY things that matter.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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Alabama Dog Saves Veteran Nearly Every Night and Day

Service dog Daisy with Sergeant Jeremy Milwood

Photo Credit: Service Dogs Alabama’s Facebook page

Retired Sergeant Jeremy Milwood, in Birmingham, Alabama is one of those soldiers who made it home but is still dealing with the aftereffects of his time in Iraq. Thankfully, his former-shelter-now-service dog, Daisy, helps Jeremy shoulder his burdens during the day and saves his life every night.

According to WBRC.com, Jeremy has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from his time as an Army combat medic. His PTSD lead to terrible nightmares that would keep him awake for hours, as well as fear and anxiety that made it near impossible for him to be around large crowds, according to the Montgomery Advertiser.

Then a veterinarian told him about Service Dogs Alabama (SDA). SDA first pulls dogs from the Humane Society of Elmore County. Afterward, inmates at the Gadsden Correctional Institution in Florida train the dogs and receive rehabilitation themselves at the same time. Once trained, the dogs are given to veterans suffering from PTSD, as well as others who need service dogs. Thanks to you, Halo, GreaterGood.org, and Freekibble annually donate over 1.5 million bowls of Halo food to help shelter pets similar to the ones SDA chooses to help inmates and veterans.

Jeremy revealed to AL.com that he initially had some doubts, but Daisy completely demolished those. He shared that “when I got Daisy from SDA, it was like she just got me. In no time, I trusted her to watch my back. She always knew just what to do.” He added, driving home his point, “Daisy saved my life.” More than 20 veterans every day die from suicide and Jeremy believes that without Daisy, he would have been one of those 20. He told reporters, “When I came back, I had no one I felt I could trust. I was isolated. Before I got Daisy, I dreaded life.”

Daisy with army veteran Jeremy

Photo Credit: WBRC

What gave him hope was his very first night with Daisy. That night, “she woke me up from a bad nightmare,” Jeremy said, “and I slept better that first night with her than I had the entire time I was back from Iraq.” Because of her training, Daisy will lick Jeremy’s hand or face if she sees him twitching in bed. This wakes Jeremy up before his nightmare can take him to a deep place of trauma. Being peacefully woken up by Daisy allows Jeremy to go back to sleep in peace. Daisy is Jeremy’s constant companion.

Now Jeremy is even able to go to fairs and stores that his PTSD had made off limits before. “When you get back, you don’t have that unconditional camaraderie but a dog, it’s always there; unconditional[ly] she’s always there for me,” Jeremy clarified/ “Daisy and I now go everywhere. Nothing is off limits,” he said.

Talking about his time before Daisy, Jeremy told reporters, “I just didn’t know where to go. I didn’t know what else to try. I tried all the medicines they’d throw at me,” adding that Daisy “saved my life…She saves my life every single night.

Our pets may not save our lives on a regular basis like Daisy does for Jeremy, but they still do so much for us. Halo believes in doing everything we can for them, starting with food. Hopefully Daisy eats delicious nutritious bowls of high quality dog food with the occasional healthy treat to thank her for the many ways she saves Jeremy’s life.

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Chained Pit Bulls Rescued by Hope for Paws

Another heartwarming rescue video from our friends at Hope for Paws. Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


Doggies.com Dog Blog

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Happy Birthday America!

A few memes to remind you not everyone enjoys fireworks. So, enjoy your cookout, celebrate with family and friends, but leave your dog at home when you go out to the fireworks display. Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


Doggies.com Dog Blog

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