giveaways are my jam! my jamberry, that is.

that lady up there, that is karly. lovely, isn’t she? i have known this chick since we were itty-bitty kiddos, playing make-believe and driving our mums crazy with our shenanigans. as we got older, we were able to keep the friendship going thanks to our family’s summertime visits to canada. good times.

and then, high school. university. marriage. babies. and more babies. life, ya know? but thanks to our handy-dandy smart phones and email and instagram, we have been able to keep in touch and up to date on each other’s lives (not to mention all the pictures of our little ones. and if you want a laugh, check out her #weeHarriet hashtag for her little lady. priceless stuff.).

anywho. one of the things that i started noticing in all her photos is that this mum of three and all-around awesome gal always looks super polished and cool. a fresh manicure and everything! how DOES she do it? well, she is a jamberry gal. it gives her not only a creative outlet BUT it allows her to make some moolah from home so she can contribute financially while rocking it out as a mum. but instead of my attempting to share her story, why don’t i let her do that…

take it away, karly!

So. My Jamberry journey…

I have always LOVED painting my nails. This was like, MY thing. BUT they had to be painted neon pink…and okay, I’m old enough now to enjoy seeing French tips. Hooray for finding a lengthier nail painting process! #eyeroll And my love of painting my nails is why Jamberry was not for me; or so I thought…

I would literally paint my nails every 4 days – because, you know, that’s when the nail polish would start chipping (#nojanknailsforme thank you very much). Fast forward two and a half babies later when a good childhood friend tells me she’s thinking of becoming a Jamberry Nails consultant. Cue polite smiling and nodding; and of course, I can’t turn her down when she’s at my house handing a couple of samples over to me. Alright, alright…how do these nail “stickers” work? Hmm…clean nails. Check. Push back cuticles…done! Cut sample in half and remove from clear plastic backing WITHOUT touching the adhesive…okay where are those tweezers? Okay, check! Heat adhesive side with hairdryer for 3 seconds. Check! Apply to clean nail without sticking it to cuticles. Check. Clip off excess hanging over my nail…chehhhhhck. Oh. OHMY! That’s GORGEOUS! How is this that gorgeous?!

Fast forward to: Okay, okay, I can get on this Jamberry bandwagon. But don’t worry hubby, I would NEVER become a consultant. That’s not for me.

Fast forward to: Oh! You’re actually making money selling these?! Hmmm. Maybe this is for me…

Fast forward to: (PULLS OUT BULLHORN) Hello friends! Have you heard about Jamberry Nail wraps? Hey! You’re a lady! Here’s a Jamberry Nail wrap for you! Oh! I see you like to paint your nails! Here’s something a gazillion times better, a Jamberry Nail wrap!

I am a stay-at-home-wife to one amazingly hard-working man and I am also a mum to three littles. I celebrated my third baby’s one month of life by becoming a Jamberry Nails consultant.

#BecauseOfJamberry I am now paying for my monthly car payment. #BecauseOfJamberry I have made new friends and have been encouraged, supported, and built up by some of the most amazing women I’ve ever met.  In turn, I have encouraged, supported, and built up total strangers in their time of need. Jamberry truly is a sisterhood. #BecauseOfJamberry I now have this amazing creative outlet, that was otherwise lost in the midst of stay-at-home-wife-and-mother (as amazing as that gig is – it is equally awesome to finally have something that is just for me!).

I cannot say enough good things about this product and this company and what it has done for me and countless other women.  Come and see what it can do for you and your family!



yay! i love it. anytime i can share a story like this, i am game. and when the story and lady behind it go hand-in-hand with super-fab products? extra yay!

i have always been an au naturale gal when it comes to my nails. a quick clip and cuticle push-back and that’s it for me. and i have always been a little jealous of the ladies who have perfectly manicured nails. but it just didn’t seem possible. how did they have the time or money to keep things looking shiny and pretty? what about dishes and kids and the normal wear and tear of the everyday? enter, jamberry. an easy way to make your fancy nail dreams come true!

now, for the good part. if you are intrigued by this fun company and their fashionable products, have i got something for you! karly has so generously offered to give 4 SHEETS OF JAMBERRY WRAPS to one very lucky duck. head over to the online catalogue to check out the options…here. the winner will receive 4 sheets of their choice which is a $60US/$70CAN value!!!!

this giveaway will run from october 5 through october 9 on swanky & dapper and on instagramhead over there to check it out and play by those rules.

blog rules:

head to the jamberry site and take a look around, come back here and leave a comment with which design you love best. one random winner will be chosen from the combined blog + IG entries. the winner will be announced on october 10 and emailed by me.

one entry per person, open to residents of the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

giveaway runs from october 5 – october 9. closes at midnight, mountain time.

selections must be from the non-licensed design options. sorority/collegiate/muddy girl are not eligible.

oh! and karly is also offering bonus goodies for anyone who places an order with her! non-licensed wraps are Buy3Get1Free and she will include a sheet of accent nails for every order placed during the giveaway timeframe and one week beyond.

the moral of the story is: get in on all this. you can head to her site and poke around, you can view the online catalogue AND you can throw your hat in the ring for a chance to win (here and on instagram)!

good luck.

xo, rachel

you really snuck up on me, october.


what on earth happened to september? bueller? bueller? it is downright ridiculous, the way time has been flying by. i am going to blink and it will be 2016. seriously.

don’t get me wrong, i love that october is here. it is a lovely month. the pumpkins are officially out at the market (and don’t get me started on my thoughts on pumpkin-spiced everything…). things are starting to smell like cinnamon everywhere you go. starbucks has the adorable autumnal cups. but, sheesh. i do feel like i lost a month. it was june, july, august. shorts season. new baby. hot. hotter. summer. swimming. more hot. and now, october! i have so many things that i want to get done in the next few months. i have been saying…before the end of the year. well, hello, before the end of the year! i only have three more months. and i have much to do. and so many fun things too!

bring it on, october. you are going to be busy and productive and all kinds of fabulous.

elinor says the darndest things

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just wanted to share a few elinor quips and cute-isms. mostly, to make sure that i document them somewhere. and hey! that’s what this blog is for, am i right?

this little girl of ours is so funny. bursting with personality and imagination and cuteness and hilarity. she can be cheeky and sassy, for sure. but it is such fun watching her learn and develop and come into her own. i sure hope she keeps her creativity and joy and sense of humor.

* and those images above? pretty much the sweetest thing i could imagine. elinor wanting to play violin like papa. she has watched him practice and listened to the notes waft through our home since birth. and last week, while he was practicing, she stood next to him and silently watched him. absorbing. and then, she grabbed her stepstool. removed a wooden rod from her dollhouse. selected a play knife as a bow. chose a book to serve as her music book. and stood at his side, mimicking his every move. and she has been performing for us everyday, ever since. ben says she has really good form and hand placement and such. and she definitely has a good ear. but all i see is the precious heart of our little lady who just wants to be like her papa. this one’s for the highlight reel folks. this is the stuff.

and don’t tell elinor…but i am thinking a legit violin is going to be happening before too long. third birthday, perhaps? OH MY GOODNESS. third birthday. three. yikes. makes me all verklempt.

okay. back to the funny stuff. here are a few of my favorites from miss elinor. enjoy!

zucchini’s goooood. for mama.

(elinor do you want a smoothie?) aww, no. i wanted lunch. smoothie’s not lunch.

tell me about your work!

you wanna come in my playrooooon? (playroom) come ooooon.

you wanna read my Jesus book?

we need to pray. i love you God. amen.

i have a sister. his name is baby brother.


i want some booboo juice. (explanation: the company i work for along with my dad, BooBoo, makes this health elixir that we drink every morning. so instead of asking for it by its proper name, she asks for the juice that comes from BooBoo’s company. booboo juice.)

what’s your favorite? (she wants us to tell her what our favorite things are…for breakfast, to read, to wear, to go, etc.)

hey honey. (she hears ben and i call each other honey and now, she uses it on everybody else)

i love my family SO much.

oh! he made a toot sound. (when ridley fills his diaper)

and blah blah blah. (she will be telling a story and use this as a filler. hilarious.)

i’m just so sad. (what are you sad about?) i’m sad about…my life.

papa, i’ve got some schmutz on my face.

it’s overcast. oh no! we can’t wear our sunnies.

oh, cowl-wee. (how she pronounces charlie)

i’m getting bizzy… (when she is dancing and twirling and gets dizzy)

i not doing some-ping. (when i ask her what she is doing, usually, when she is too quiet or about to do something she knows she shouldn’t)

mama, lets do some laund-rine. (laundry)

hey! we’re doing dishwasher.

shaun teen max out. (what she calls the insanity workout with Shaun T)

wordless wednesday | jesus take the wheel*

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* that time when your man has to drive to church separately for an early rehearsal and you manage to get the rest of the family out the door with time to spare (and your hair curled and lipstick on, no less) aaaaaand then you get a flat tire. sigh. and then you have a flash of, “i have changed a tire before. i can totally do this…” but then you think, “nah. i am wearing my new shoes and have two little ones in the car. and there’s AC in here…” and then you call AAA and rock out to david crowder and bob dylan until rescue arrives.

and p.s. a hearty YAY! that elinor didn’t have a peeing on the side of the freeway moment…

and p.p.s. elinor is scowling in that first picture because she had just asked “oh no…what ’bout church, mama?!” and i informed her that we probably wouldn’t be making it to her class. she was definitely crestfallen. the scowl was intense. but at least it was for a super sweet reason. and yes, she has been reminding me about the ordeal ever since…”mama, ‘member when we got a fat tire? that was very bad. we didn’t go to church. oooooh noooooo.”

taking stock | september’s end


making // big green power smoothies.
cooking // big bowls of veggies for lunch.
drinking // water, water, water + booch + rich, frothy coffee.
reading // bringing up boys + philosophy textbooks + montessori reference books.
wanting // to relocate to aspen for the winter.
looking // at the dog hair tumbleweeds in my house. i clean them up every few days and they magically regenerate. dogs. sheesh.
playing // airplane with ridley and grocery store with elinor.
wasting // hair ties. i bought a mega pack so elinor would have plenty on hand for teeny topknots and pigtails. but those little buggers keep disappearing on me.
sewing // living vicariously through my mum who is killing it. quilts and projects galore! speaking of, i have a mending job for you when you have a sec…
wishing // on the blood moon. not really, but did you see it? how cool, right?
enjoying // my quiet time.
waiting // for sweater weather to happen.
liking // fall CSA boxes.
loving // the way ridley links his little arm around mine nuzzles into my collarbone, and grabs my shirt when i hold him.
hoping // that i can sneak in a pedicure this weekend.
marveling // at the small and sweet blessings that i experience throughout my day.
needing // to reorganize my front closet.
smelling // amber + patchouli incense.
wearing // my super soft lounge pants + my essential v-neck t-shirt + a messy braid.
noticing // how much life has changed in the last two years.
knowing // my need for fresh manna and mercy and grace.
thinking // about putting in a new kitchen sink.
feeling // grateful for mama prayer warriors and interesting conversation.
bookmarking // all the books. all the web pages. all the catalogues.
opening // the windows in the morning. just for a moment…
giggling // with my little man. he’s such a flirt.

past post here

a double-date night.

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oh hey there! how was your weekend? things were pretty great around here. with a few minor bumps in the road (more on that later). but overall, super nice.

on saturday night, we dropped the little ones at my folks’ house so they could have a little playdate…and so we could have a playdate of our very own. double-date night, people! we have been trying to get something on the books from MONTHS AGO. it really is ridiculous how quickly our calendars are filled. it is difficult enough for us to plan an evening out, just us. but adding another couple to the mix? woah. that’s three household schedules to coordinate. ours. theirs. and of course, the all-important schedule of whoever kindly agrees to watch the little ones. this dinner has been tentatively scheduled and then rescheduled quite a few times. so, it was about time. and when we finally found a do-able evening, we were on it.

dropped the little ones. hopped in the car. and off we went. and since my mom was armed with a bottle, we could really party it up. you guys, we stayed out past 7:30pm! wild ones, we are.

we really needed this night. i am so grateful for a little break to turn off mama and papa mode and just be us. amazing what plates and plates of food, some sweet dessert, and good company can do for you.

here’s to a new week! and getting more date nights on the calendar…

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