Now that I’m a Mom

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As Weston’s 1st birthday approaches I can’t help but think how much he’s changed me over the year. He’s taught me so many lessons showed me I can do things I had no idea I could do. I’ve shocked myself this last year with the new found talents and strength I didn’t even know I was capable of. I may be wrong but I think a few mama’s out there might identify with these post baby “talents”.

Let’s chat about them shall we?

1. I can Go Go Gadget my arms to the back seat like no body's business- This was a shock to me. I’ve used my mom arms to find toys, pop or hold a paci in his month, feed him a bottle, snack, or meal, hold his hand or rub his cheek if he’s upset even little dancing finger shows for entertainment. It’s pretty impressive if I do say so myself. They’re like their own little people.

2. Weird things now give me a sense of accomplishment- Clean stuffed cloth diapers. A bottle rack full of squeaky clean bottles.  When nugget goes #2. Really more of an accomplishment for him but I feel like I can check it off my list as well! Making it to an event, with Weston, on time. Mama showered and dressed in something besides my mom get up (workout clothes). Getting a tough stain out of Weston’s clothes. Having an uninterrupted phone call. Who am I kidding this one hardly happens. Waking up without an alarm before Weston does. Drinking a cup of coffee without having to warm it. Surviving a long road trip without any major melt downs…..for Weston or us. Picking up his room while he’s in there. That one right there is almost impossible. Making it in the house with a load full of groceries in my arms and a 27 pound baby on my hip without causalities. Catching him before he falls onto something harmful. This usually involves a ninja like dive and flip type of move. These things and many more give my mama heart a sense of accomplishment. Call me lame if you like!

3. I had a soft heart before Weston but now it’s more of a mushy blob- Can that be considered a new talent? I say yes! The mom heart! They ability to cry at the drop of a hat. Yep you just never know what’s going to get my water works flowing. A sweet moment between dad and son. Seeing him hug my best friend after not seeing her for a few days. They way he lights up when he sees his grandparents. Watching him try to figure something out, and succeeding. Seeing excitement in his eyes as he experiences something new. When he calls me mama or lights up when I walk into a room. When he started walking…..don’t even get me started. I can be giggling one second and boohooing the next.

4. “Power Through” has become my most used phrase- And even though it’s just a phrase it totally gets me through the rocky moments. Maybe those words have some magical power? Running on little sleep, house a mess, I’m a mess, have a To-Do list a million miles long which all needs to be done with a baby on my hip so basically one handed. I start to get overwhelmed then say the words “Power Through” and I somehow make it through. Nap hating screaming teething baby, “Power Through sister”! Colic baby who’s having a rough day “Power Through!”  You have good days, GREAT days, then you have those days that you're just not sure you can make it. Somehow I always do and the phrase “Power Through” helps. Okay maybe coffee and a sense of humor help too!

5. Scientist who say “It’s not possible to successfully multi task” are soooo wrong! I’m the multi task queen! I was good at multi tasking before baby, post baby I pretty much rock at it. I’m just going to go ahead and toot my own horn here…TOOT…..TOOT! The ability to multi task is the only way you can survive with small children. Bottle in one hand, baby in another, mail tucked under my neck while playing defense from the baby who wants to destroy it. Doing the dishes while dancing and singing to keep my mama’s boy from flipping out that I’m not holing him. Answering an email while making sure my son doesn’t destroy my office or get hurt. Successfully folding laundry into neat organized piles while changing a diaper with my toes. Okay I haven’t mastered that one yet but don’t put it past me. I’m not saying any of these task are rocket science status BUUUUT let’s be honest they’re pretty close.

7. The mom guns. This one gets me a little miffed because I have the mom gun strength but gosh darn it I wanted to be able to see the muscles too. They’re hiding under the baby weight. I can totally use the baby weight excuse until he’s in collage, right? Okay back on track. The Mom Guns. Carrying a baby around for hours on end. Up and down the stairs. Squatting. Bending. Standing. Sometimes even a little bouncing action going on if they’re fussy. Usually all the baby carrying is going on while doing other random task with your free arm like lifting weights. My little guy is not so little. He was born at 9.3 and now weighs 28 pounds and wants to be in mamas arms all day. So you see why I’m a little ticked that I didn’t get the sweet muscle award that comes along with this new found strength? I’ve worked hard for it man! Maybe when he’s in college and the baby weight is gone I’ll be able to show off my mom guns!

8. Kisses, cuddles, hugs, and all that mushy stuff. I never get my fill My goodness I had no idea I would want to love on one being as much as I do Weston and I was a pretty affectionate person before I became a mama. His sweet cheeks, his widdle hands and chubby feet, his big noggin, and round tummy, the way he smells in the morning, or fresh out of the bath. Y’all I just can’t get enough. Even when he’s being a little snot and screaming his head off I still want to give him a big smooch. Seriously the poor child just wants to play and here I come with my open arms and big puckered lips “Give mama a kiss.” “Can mama have a hug?” I just can’t get enough of him. It doesn’t matter how much lovin’ I get in I can always go back for more. When he gives me a mouth open drool covered kiss I just melt. I can see how others may find this gross but if it’s your own baby you’ll melt too….then wipe the drool off your face.

9. Buggers, snot, drool, and other bodily fluids don’t faze me! Oh yeah I used to get sicked out about this stuff before baby now it’s like I’m cleaning up water, although it’s poop or something else others consider gross. I pick his nose. I’m not too good for the dirty diaper smell check. I’ve even caught puke in my hand……then sat there hand full of green avocado puke until someone was able to get me a napkin (I was at a restaurant). I wipe his snot and am usually covered in drool most days. It’s like he’s a wild animal marking his mama territory! I talk about poop like I’m talking about what I ate for lunch. Did he poop? How much? What it soft or hard? Good consistency, GREAT!  Yes I can see how this is gross from the outside looking in but pop happens people and I‘m pretty sure I’m not the only mom out there that can say “No cheese and salad dressing on the side please oh yeah and like I was saying he had a pop explosion that was out of this world….” all in one sentence without getting nauseous.

10. The ability to love on a level that’s unimaginable. Oh see just typing that has me crying. Yep there’s number 3 from the list in action for you. I knew I would love him. I was prepared for that but what I wasn’t prepared for was just how strong and deep this love would run. It’s laced through every inch of my body. It drives my dreams and decisions. It’s a love that’s indescribable and as my husband so poetical said on the day Weston was born “The true form of love at first sight is the love you have for your child when you first lay eyes on them.”  My love for him has changed me. He has changed me. He’s broken me down, rebuilt me, and shown me so many things in this last year. Because of him and my love for our son I am better. I know I’ll continue to learn from my sweet one and I can’t even wrap my mind around this one but I also know my love for him will continue to grown and take on new meaning. I’m pretty sure I’ll pick up even more talents along the way.

Being a mommy his hard. It can be lonely and trying at times but it’s the most amazing gift and shows you that you are so much stronger than you think. I’m still holding out for those mama guns though!

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It’s My Birthday and Other Funny Things

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Disclaimer: Now let me warn you this post is going to be nothing but random. If that’s not your cup of tea here’s your warning to make like a tree and split. I don’t really have anything in particular to blog about but it’s my birthday and I wanted to blog……about nothing……..and I feel like I can without feeling guilty that I’m not working on other things that need my attention…..because it’s my birthday darn it!

Yep today’s the day. I’m 32 but Kent swears I’m 33. I’ve told him he’s crazy all week but now I’m starting to wonder if he’s right. I’m too scared to do the math. So let’s stick with 32 which I’m prrrretty sure is right.

I used to always wonder (when I was younger) “How in the world do people forget their age?” Well I get it now. 

BTW I like to say “eh” along with “and such” and every now and then I throw in a few English words. I don’t know guys it’s just fun and I’m weird. The other day someone asked me if I was Canadian, which turned into an awkward convo where I tried to explain myself. I should have just said “Yes eh!” and smiled. 

This week I’ve done so many “What the What” things Kent and I both have been shaking our heads at me. It’s not out of the norm for me to do stuff like this but this many in one week, WOW!

Let me share……….

1. Left the house without shoes. I was fully clothed (thank goodness), had makeup on and something else on besided workout clothes (maybe that’s what threw me off) but left without shoes. I had to turn around and drive back to get shoes after I caught on. You would think the feeling of grass on my feet or pushing the gas pedal with my toes would have clued me in…..nope!

2. I’ve had to wash 1 load of clothes 3 times because I kept forgetting to put them in the dryer and they had that stank. Y’all know what I’m talking about.

3. Met friends for lunch only I went to the wrong location even after we talked about which location we were meeting at. Major fail!

4. I cut my finger pretty bad. I think I need stitches. Kent doesn't so I’m choosing to hope he’s right. My finger is pounding as I type this but it’s my birthday and I want to blog darn it!

5. Put a box of crackers in the fridge.

6. Left the faucet in the kitchen running. I went upstairs and went on with my day. I don’t want to even think about how long it was on before I realized.

7. Went to Target. Shopped. Tried on clothes (with a baby I might add), waited in line, items were bagged and ready to go annnnnnnd I realized I didn’t have my wallet. Asked them to void my order (there were people in line behind me that were super happy that I was holding them up) and hold onto my items while I ran to the car to get my wallet. Went to the car…….no wallet. Put Weston back in the shopping cart went back inside and asked if they could hold it while I ran home “I only live 5 minutes away.” I got the look but was told it should be fine (the should part came with a dirty look). Made it home and could not find my stinking wallet anywhere! Keep in mind all this is going on while I have Weston who many of you know is what we call a needy baby. Loves his mama and hates being away from me…..unless he’s watching his tablet in the care (ac on of course) Decided it would be best to put him back in the car that way I can look hands free. I could have put him down in the house but that would have just turned into a massive fit and I just didn’t have the sanity left for that.  Turned the car on got him all set up with a show (buying a tablet for him has to be the best purchase of 2014). He was happy and I was able to continue my hunt. After looking a little longer I still couldn’t find it and started to think it must have gotten stolen. Oh great! Decided to take a wallet hunt potty break and guess what I found? My wallet in our upstairs bathroom resting on the toilet patter roll holder thing. I have no idea how it got there.

At this point I could care less about running back to Target I was DONE but I got “the look” so I just had to go back and prove them wrong! I know I’m super mature like that. Not to mention I put a lot of work into that purchase between managing Weston while I was shopping and The Great Wallet Hunt of 2014. Coming home with my items would be like coming home with a trophy.  So off we went. Got another cart (3rd one for the day) and waited in line to collect my items. Good news is that they still had them. The clerk told me they had a bet going on if I would come back or not. He bet that I would. His manager bet against me. I told him I was happy to help him win and off we went. See I told you I had to go back!

We have 3 days left in the week so I may need to come back and update my list if anything else happens.

UPDATE:

8. Opened the car door too quickly while I was too close. Why in the world was I that close? The corner of the door scratched my beloved sunglasses and jammed the frames against my face. It freaking hurt! Now one of my lenses has scratch across it.  Boy am I lucky I was wearing glasses though. Maybe I should wrap myself in bubble wrap!

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I’m so ready for my mother-in-law to come home! Not only do we miss her but I’m starting to lose my mind (read above). 

For those who don’t know (umm you should be following along on Instagram then you would know all this stuff) my mother in law watches Weston while I work but  has been unable to watch him for over a month. I knew this was coming but only knew about 2 weeks of it. The other part was a surprise soooooo we were not prepaid. No outside help besides her. Poor Kent has had to adjust his schedule just so I can take a shower. I’ve had to move a few of my shoots which I felt awful about. I now have a pile of work a mile long that will take me all of September to catch up on. So while things are crazy busy right now when my sweet mother-in-law returns things are only going to get even more crazy as I play massive catch up.

With everything there is a lesson to be learned, right?

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Here’s what I’ve taken from this….
1. As much as I say I want to be a full time stay at home mommy. I’ve learned that I don’t. Well I do and I don’t. I want to be with him most of the day but mama needs an outlet. For me this is work. While I get stressed over deadlines and all the other hoopla that comes with running my own business. I’ve learned to have gratitude for my situation.

Honestly I have it pretty good!

I get to do something I love. I’m able to control my schedule and I get to be with Weston as much as I want. He typically goes to my mother-in-law’s for 4 hours a day. I get to work. Hit my refresh button and be mommy again when I pick him up. It’s honestly the best of both worlds! Over the years I’ve lost gratitude for what I do. This has brought it all back. 

2. I appreciated Kent’s mom before (Seriously his dad and mom are awesome. They’re the kind of grandparents you dream up for your children. They love him to pieces and are super involved even with the not so fun stuff. We are so blessed to have them!) but my gratitude has been taken a whole new level. Honestly I would not be able to work, shower, do laundry, pick up our house, wash bottles, or have a second to breathe without her. I know it sounds a little dramatic and yes I can find the time to do those things but then I would never sleep and neither would Kent…….that’s 100% true. Without her I would have to close the photography business doors which would make me sad. They are the glue I tell ya!

While things have been little cray-cray and I’m starting to show sings of losing my mind. Life is good and I love it even the stressful times. Well because the stressful times come with more coffee!

The end.

 

Ps… Kent got me a wristlet wallet for my birthday which is kind of fitting after the whole Target debacle. I sure love him and our Mr. Sweet Cheeks.

Why are we not buddies on Instagram?
Instagram: Kendra.Pryor

Living Room Gallery Wall

The space above our couch is super awkward. In fact it’s so awkward it’s been empty for as long as we’ve lived in our home…..almost 8 years! I just couldn’t make my mind up, shelves or gallery wall. So there it was blank and lonely.

Until I got word that we had family coming to town; family that had never visited our home. I dug through my “goodie” closet aka the corner of Weston’s closet that holds my random finds and pull out a few things I thought would snaz the wall it up.

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No planning or measuring. That’s too stressful. I just grabbed a hammer and some nails and went to town!

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The H was a flea market find. The yellow frame was Goodwill frame I fixed up with some spray paint and the Kent and Kendra art work is from Esty store. I LOVE everything is their store. I bought a few things for Weston’s nursery and had this done as well hoping I would find a place for it someday. I think it’s kind of perfect in our living room!

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Eeek isn’t nugget so cute. This was from his 6 month shoot which by the way I have not finished editing and he’ll be 1 in a month! Kiddos that have a photographer parent totally get the shaft! Can you see his sweet little teethies? I remember wanting to get his 6 month pictures done asap to capture that sweet smile right there……with those 4 little teeth…..before all the others came it. He now has 8 and is working on 9 and 10. So glad even though it was a busy time and even though I have yet to finish editing them that I made it important to document that sweet smile! 

The fancy dude silhouette was another flea market find I bought hoping to use in Weston’s nursery but couldn’t find a spot for it. I love it so I’m glad it ended up working for this wall.

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The Huie’s sign was a craft project I whipped up while I was preggers. It special to me. I remember painting at the coffee table trying to maneuver over my big belly while I thought about all fun memories that that lead us to where we were “The Huei’s”. Yep this one will be with us for a long time.

The sweet girl picture was a Goodwill find and the Picasso (yes it’s totally real) is from Ikea. What you didn’t know they sale Picasso originals at Ikea? They totally do!

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And there ya have it! Nothing fancy or earth shattering but it’s pretty, it was done on a budget and the awkward wall looks much better!

Okay now onto something a little off topic. Well not totally of topic but I’m switching gears a little.

Do you remember above when I said we had family coming into town which is why I decided to do this? Well it was a very last minute project and I needed something within an hour to fill my empty frames. I did a big no no. Something I tell all my clients not to do. I had some prints done at Costco. Shame shame shame! They were able to get them to me in 30min so I went with it.  Even though I knew I was being bed I was shocked at just how awful the transfer was. Can we say GROSSSSS!

Pro lab print is on the left and Costco is on the right.

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The saturation is way over done. Compare Weston’s feet and face. Among many other things. I edited this image to have a warm (not Costco warm) vintage feel to them. My pro lab print matches my edit perfectly!

Pro lab on the left and Costco on the right.

Compare the skies the contrast and shadows. Nice try Costco but now even close!

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I left the uglies in the the frames just long enough to replace them with prints from my pro lab.

So when your photographer tells you not to use a printing services like Walmart, CVS, or Costco this my friend is why!

However if you do not have access to a pro lab and would like to order from a safe place I highly recommend Mpix.  Nope not affiliated but I’ve run test images though them in the past and have been happy with them. Going though your photographer is always best. You just can’t beat pro lab prints but Mpix works if a pro lab is not an option.

Instagram: Kendra.Pryor

Special Moments From Our Weekend

I tried typing a few photo descriptions but keep deleting what I type which tells me these sweet photos do all the talking on their own!

A few special moments I captured over the weekend………….

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Instagram: Kendra.Pryor

Flash Back Post–Colorado 2013

Y’all know I long to be a mountain girl.
We live in the suburbs of Texas but my heart lives in the mountains.  
I often day dream about our farm life.
Our cozy charm filled house, numerous cups of coffee enjoyed from our porch overlooking our chickens and bee hives. Our children running around our property exploring and enjoy the simple pleasures of live.
These daydreams are meditation for my busy hectic soul.

Last year thanks to Kent’s company we we’re able to visit Colorado.
A state I had never been to but knew it was my home long before the trip was planned.

When Kent asked if I wanted to join him on his work tripped I was pumped!
We had a couple days just us tucked away in the mountains before we headed to Denver for his convention. 

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Out of all our trips this was by far our favorite.
The peace
The calmness
The beauty
All jumbled up together to create this relaxing environment.
I tried to explain this feeling to friends and family after we got home but I just couldn't put it into words.

I still can’t put it in words but I can take myself back to that feeling when I daydream about our trip.
Yes I know I’m sounding a little nutty but it’s true.
I thought I knew what it meant to relax but our trip to CO taught me how to relax on a whole new level.  
It was definitely something my soul needed!

As embarrassing as I am to admit it I literally cried when it was time to go home.
We were waiting for a taxi to take us to the airport and I had to excuse myself so people didn’t see me. I know right, what nut!

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I didn’t take a lot of photos. In fact this is about it outside of our maternity photos.

I left my camera behind most days.
I remember having this need to fully connect with Kent and our surroundings.  
Sometimes that means that I need to experience things camera free.
It can be very refreshing but of course now I’m wishing I took more photos.

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I was almost 30 weeks pregnant.
Maybe I can blame the bathroom boo hoo that eh?
So many things were going through my mind.
We were quickly headed towards a new chapter.
12 years of just us was soon to be over.
I was excited and scared all at the same time.
I’m grateful for the time I had with Kent.
To focus on us. 

Any expecting mama’s reading I highly recommend a babymoon even if it’s a styacation in your own city!  
I promise it will be good for you and your loved one.  

 

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This was our little home for 2 days.
Yep only 2 days but man those 2 days were glorious!
I totally took advantage of the hammock.
We explored, cuddled, ate yummy food, and shot my maternity photos right in our backyard (you can see them here)

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We’re headed back to CO in just a few days.
Y’all I am just giddy with excitement!
This time our trip will be a little different……..
-Weston’s here. I’m so excited to share Colorado with him.
-We’re taking Brady (our dog)
-We’re driving (yep 14 hours with a 10 month old). 
-A couple friends are joining us.
-Annnnnd we’re staying for a whole week!! EEEK!

CO is my Disney world and I’m counting down the nights until we hit the road! 
Send us safe travel thoughts!
We’ll be driving through he night.
I’m a little nervous about it but know this will be best for our super active son.

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We took our Instagram buddies along to CO with us last year and I want to do the same this year!
It was fun sharing the journey and it acts a wonder travel journal.
If you would like to go on vacation with us be sure to like our Instagram page.
I’ll be sharing pictures and videos along the way. 

Instagram: Kendra.Pryor

Links in this post:
Just Us
Maternity Photos

Favorite Drugstore Makeup

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The Breakdown
How I use them and why I like them

These are all things I use on a regular basis for more of a daytime natural look. 
Maybe I should have titled it the perfect daytime makeup for the busy and budget conscious!

1. e.l.f. Lip Stain in Pink Petal – Love this thing! It’s cheap and does the trick. Most days for my lip color I just wear this and top it off with chap stick. It’s pretty, long lasting and easy to apply! You have to be careful the 1st few applications though. The color is very bright when its new but it tappers off a little and turns into a very pretty pink.
2. e.l.f. All Over Color Stick in Persimmon- E.l.f. has done it again! This is my 2nd favorite out of all the items I’ve listed! Another thing I use daily. You can use it on your lips, eyes, face. I use it as a highlighter on my nose and bling it with my finger tips. It’s crazy how just a little swipe down your nose brightens your face up. It’s just the prefect touch of shimmer.
3. Revlon Color Stay Foundation in Warm Golden- After reading several reviews I decided to give this one a go and I’m glad I did. Great coverage (I do not have the best skin) without looking cakey and it stays put which is important especially during TX summers.
4. e.l.f Baked Blush in Pinktastic – Perfect as a highlighter and adds just a touch of color. There are days that I only wear BB cream a little concealer and this to add color to my cheeks. Not what I use as my blush when I’m applying a full face of makeup but perfect for those days that you just want something easy and natural.  
5. Revlon Photoready powder in Light/Medium- This was another product that has a cult following! Decided to give it a try due to the reviews and it’s become my powder! Yep I’ve joined the cult. I’ve tried a few other since I started using this but I just keep coming back to Revlon Photoready.
6. wet n wild eyeshadow trios- My favorite thing on the list! I can not say enough about their eye shadow trios. I think I have all of them. They’re cheap, the pigment is awesome for the price point, and I love the colors! If you don’t own their eyeshadows I highly recommend you get on that.
7. Blistex Deep Renewal Chap Stick – Just a hint of mint, SPF 15, smooth, and long lasting. What more can you ask for from a chap stick. I recently got this as a sample with another product I bought. I’ve since bought 3 additional tubes so I have one for each chap stick spot in my home. It’s good stuff y’all!
8. NYC Smooth Skin Loose Face Powder in Translucent- Just a light dusting sets my makeup and smoothes  everything out. I also use a little under my eyes to help with those dang bags I picked up during my pregnancy. Again another cheap product that I believe over delivers!

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Favorite Health Conscious Food From Aldi

Do you shop at Aldi? I sure do!
Who doesn’t love getting yummy food at great prices. I also love their whole shopping cart system. Why in the world don’t all store do this. It’s genius idea!

I didn’t go for the longest because I was for sure all they sold was junk. Yes there is junk just like any other grocery store but they also have some great healthy choices as well! The produce alone is worth a trip!

I usually pop in Aldi once a week for a couple of things. After my most recent trip I decided to pull out the new video camera and recorded a little Aldi haul for you.

Please excuse the lack of makeup and frizzy hair. We’re all friends here right so I’ll let you see me looking like a hot mess……literally it was stinking hot that day!

During the week as I enjoyed my Aldi goodies I shot a few pictures of what I ate so I could share with you. Everything below is from Aldi unless noted.

Salad Wrap: Whole wheat wrap, mixed greens, cucumber, tomatoes, avocado, bell pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, sundried tomato goat cheese crumbles (just a tad), and Ken’s light Cesar dressing (Target) served with snap peas (Asian H Mart our other favorite place to grocery shop) and my all time favorite Aldi product hummus which I talked about in the haul. Seriously if you’re hummus fan get in on this!

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Summer Salad: Mixed greens, green apples, strawberries, blueberries (from our farmer’s market trip), celery, walnuts, fresh cracked pepper, honey almond goat cheese (just a little folks), and Ken’s Light Cesar dressing (from Target)

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Afternoon Pick Me Up: Carmel rice cake, almond butter, 1 crushed Biscoff cookie, topped with a little honey, and yummy strawberries on the side. My favorite coffee k-cup Starbucks Breakfast blend (from Target)

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Good stuff huh?
I’m a weirdo and enjoy my food even more when I know I got it for a great price!

If you’re an Aldi fan I would love to know what you’re favorites are! Share in a comment or jump on Instagram to let me know!

Instagram:Kendra.Pryor