MOTHERHOOD: AMONG THE WILDFLOWERS

Last week my mom and I took Lilly to a local flower farm.  I’m always looking for outdoor, social distance activities that L and I can do together and I’ve had a handful of friends recommend this activity to me.  I was truly thrilled with the experience and the farm itself, and I’m so excited to recount our adventures for you guys.  

A hidden jewel of Northwest Ohio, GardenView Flowers is a 60 acre family-run farm that specializes in designing beautiful bouquets for weddings. Not only does the farm offer the most gorgeous fresh-cut flowers for brides, but they also offer a U-Pick Garden and seasonal flower design workshops.

My mom and I had never been flower picking before and it was so delightful. It was seriously a very relaxing and very fulfilling activity! The flower farm opens daily at 8:00 a.m. We arrived around 10:00 a.m. and there were only a few other people there picking flowers. Upon arrival, we headed over to the cutest farm Flower Stop. The Flower Stop offers bouquets to go, dried flowers, and other gifts. It’s the most charming little building.

Adjacent to the Flower Stop is a check-in table where you pay for your experience and pick-up clippers and a cup/vase in which to place your picked flowers. Because Ohio is now under a mandatory mask order, I felt extremely safe. All of the staff and visitors were wearing masks and people were practicing social distancing. I was very pleased too with the disinfecting precautions the farm took to ensure the clippers and other supplies were cleaned in between uses. Plus, they offered hand sanitizer and complimentary bottles of water (it does get hot out in those flower fields)!

After we checked-in, we chose a field of wildflowers and started picking! The farm plants over 30 varieties of fresh-cut flowers and there was a colorful mix of varieties and textures from which to choose.

L and I were drawn to the bright pinks and purples, so we picked a lot of Zinnias, Cosmos, Dahlias, and Sweet Williams. There were also plenty of Sunflowers, Gladiolus, Snap Dragons, and Blue Ageratum. There were so many different varieties and colors and you could easily come home with multiple bouquets depending on the look and feel you are going for.

We picked flowers for almost an hour and I was actually kind of sad to leave! L absolutely loved smelling the flowers, helping us pick them, and frolicking through the many fields. Her face of pure joy really just sums up our experience. We definitely plan to return again and again. If you are local to Northwest Ohio and are looking for a family friendly, safe activity, flower picking at GardenView Flowers is a must!

Be sure to check out their website and follow them on Instagram!

Slainte,

Shannon

BRAND SPOTLIGHT: MADDIE AND CONNOR CO.

I’m exceptionally excited to share this latest brand spotlight with you all! A few months ago I connected with a fellow mama, Sara Feeney, on Instagram. We quickly bonded over motherhood, classic children’s clothing, the coastal life, the list goes on. Early on, Sara mentioned a dream of hers to create her own brand of children’s clothing that was preppy and classic. Over the last couple of months, I’ve had the pleasure of watching Sara bring her dream to life. And so, without further ado, I introduce you all to Maddie & Connor Co.!

Maddie & Connor Co. offers timeless and classic clothing that captures the joy and essence of childhood. All of the styles are designed by Sara herself and her attention to detail is top notch. Think stripes, seersucker, embroidery, eyelit, and scallops. The designs are so timeless that they can be passed down from sibling to sibling, and generation to generation.

One of my favorite designs in the new collection is the Lighthouse Beach Dress. You guys know I’m a sucker for blue and white stripes so I knew right away this style would end up in Lilly’s wardrobe. The ricrac along the ruffle and hem make this dress so incredibly sweet. And the fabric is really lightweight – perfect for hot, summer days down by the water.

When I’m shopping for clothes for Lilly, I look for quality, style, and price. And Maddie and Connor Co. hit all three of these criteria. The quality is beautiful (the Lighthouse Beach Dress washes so well!!), the style is timeless and classic, and the price is completely affordable. If you are looking for a great children’s clothing brand, I highly recommend shopping Maddie and Connor Co.!

Slainte,

Shannon 

MOTHERHOOD: STRAWBERRY FIELDS FOREVER

Strawberry picking! An activity the Solt family had never done before and I’m still not sure who had the most fun! We are still sticking pretty close to home and when we do take L out, we only go to outdoor spaces with plenty of room, strict social distancing, and mask wearing standards. A local farm where I typically buy pumpkins and mums in the fall offers you pick strawberries for two weeks in June. I did my research to make sure this farm was taking the proper precautions that are mandated by the Ohio Department of Health and feeling comfortable, we decided to try it out.

Stevens Farm in Monclova is the perfect setting for a morning out with the family. There is a cute little farmhouse at the front of the property with an old log cabin and small barn with horses and goats you can feed and pet. They have a greenhouse with fresh herbs and flowers and just across the way a small pond with a dock and canoes. Just past the pond is an orchard with peach and pear trees. Lilly loved running through the rows of trees! And just then just beyond the orchard are fields and fields of strawberries.

We arrived soon after the you pick opened and I’m so glad we did! Within 45 minutes they were almost sold out of spots – aka rows. All of the employees were wearing masks, they were sanitizing berry carts, and every family had their own row and they alternated rows so that people were spread out comfortably. We felt exceptionally comfortable.

We spent about a half hour picking strawberries and filled up two pints. These were literally the most delicious strawberries I’ve ever tasted! So fresh and so sweet. I think Lilly enjoyed squishing them between her hands more than she enjoyed eating them though.

We ate a fair amount throughout the day after we got home and washed them. But I also ended up making a strawberry cobbler that was so yummy and refreshing. You can find the recipe for that here.

It was a beautiful summer morning and I’m so glad we ventured out for these happy family memories!

Slainte,

Shannon

STYLE: FAVORITE PLACES TO SHOP FOR TODDLER CLOTHING

As soon as we found out we were pregnant with a baby girl, I knew I would have a problem with shopping for clothes for her. Although I’ve had my moments, I’ve actually done pretty well splurging on items for special occasions and keeping it realistic for everyday clothes. Because let’s be real, kids grow SO FAST. Also, the wear and tear on their clothes is pretty intense and I would rather get the best bang for our buck on her everyday wear.

But, I do LOVE buying her special occasion clothes and I have found some top notch children boutiques. Almost all of these boutiques are small businesses and I’m more than happy to support them. And in all honesty, the quality of the clothing for these specialty boutiques is fantastic. If you are looking for well-made, high quality craftsmanship for your littles, specialty boutiques are the way to go.

I’ve broken down my favorite places to shop based on special occasions (birthdays, baptism, holidays, etc.), everyday wear, and local.  

SPECIAL OCCASION 

Lilly Pulitzer 

Bella Bliss (based in Kentucky)

The Bella Bean (based in Columbus, OH!)

Shrimp & Grits

Coming Soon: Shop Maddie and Connor (This shop opens later this spring, but follow them on Instagram for some teasers!)

EVERYDAY STYLES 

Baby Gap

Old Navy

Cat & Jack for Target

LOCAL BOUTIQUES

Kids Klotheslines

Bowinkles

Hopefully this list is helpful! I love sharing where I find the cutest baby and toddler styles.  If you know a great place to shop for toddler clothing that I haven’t listed, please feel free to comment and provide a link!

Slainte,

Shannon