Friday, December 13, 2013

Easy Co-Worker Gift ~ DIY Marble Magnets

As I was trying to figure out what I could make for my co-workers for a Christmas gift, I remembered that when I made the chore charts- I made cute little glass magnets. I figured I could make Christmas-themed magnets for the ladies that I work with. First, I gathered my supplies.

You will need:

  • Mod Podge (and a brush to apply it)
  • 1 inch glass marbles (got mine at JoAnn's)
  • 3/4 inch button magnets (Michael's)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Magazine to cut images out of (I used Real Simple's December edition)

The first step is to use the glass marbles as a guide to measure images that you want to use. Then, trace around the image and cut it out. Put a thin layer of Mod Podge on the back of the marble (flat side), and adhere the image to the magnet.

Set it aside to dry, and finish cutting out images. Then, once the Mod Podge is dry- you can put a dot of hot glue on the back of the image that you just glued to the marble and stick the magnet on. 

How easy is that?! I love how they came out.

Then, I packaged each set of 4 in tiny take-out containers that I found at JoAnn's. It took me about an hour to complete all 11 sets! Not bad, and it only cost me about $15. 

What did you get for your coworkers or neighbors this year?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday Morning Gossip: Soccer and Football

This is my first Monday Morning Gossip post, and I'm excited to learn from all of the participants! Thanks to Kimberlee at I Have a Degree in This for the invite!

This weekend was Little J's last soccer game of the season. At the beginning of the season, they voted on a team name- and J's suggestion won out, Blue Hammerheads! After the last game, the coaches hosted a nice little get together for the boys to spend some time off the field, and he got his first trophy! He was so excited to see his name on the trophy. We all truly enjoyed the coaches and the kids on this team.


Then, we went home and watched the USC Trojans beat No. 4 ranked Stanford!! It was Homecoming weekend, and I would have liked to have gone to the game. But it just didn't work out this year. Hopefully we can go next year! This was a major upset, so it was really exciting to win.

"Coach O" or Ed Orgeron
On Sunday mornings, we take both boys to swim class. And I have taken up guitar lessons, so I have that every Sunday now. Our OTHER football team, the San Diego Chargers, played Sunday afternoon. I'll just leave that one alone for this week! 

How was your weekend?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

His First Broken Bone

We are no strangers to the Emergency Room, unfortunately. But the latest adventure was a first for us- a broken bone. It was a Monday, and I had just returned home from a doctor's visit. My mother-in-law watches the boys on Mondays, so she pulled up to the front of the house shortly after I arrived home. I heard him. From inside the house. Screaming like I've never heard him scream. I could immediately tell that something was wrong with my little man. I grabbed my sandals, my purse, and ran outside. I left my mother-in-law standing in the driveway with Mayhem, and took off to get an x-ray. 

Call it motherly instinct, call it a feeling in the pit of your stomach, call it whatever you want. I knew his bone was broken. He couldn't stop sobbing. What I got from my mother-in-law, from our brief conversation, was that Mayhem had jumped on Little J. Once we got to the Urgent Care (much closer than the ER), I was able to get Little J to calm down a bit. He told me that Mayhem jumped on top of him, and they both fell on the ground. The Urgent Care took x-rays, and I tried to make it 'exciting' for Little J. "Look how cool these are? You can see your bones!" We left two hours later, with x-rays to bring to another doctor and a prescription for Tylenol with codeine.

It was a miserable night. Any movement in his arm set him off. He fell asleep, and leaned on his 'bad arm' a few times- and woke up screaming at the top of his lungs. I stayed home from work the next day, to take him to an orthopedic doctor. Thankfully, this doctor gave him a sling- which has helped quite a bit! He stayed home from school for a few days, and got some rest. Of course, it's his right arm, so he is learning how to use his left arm for things!

Yup, it's broken!
He's doing much better now, but getting a shirt on/off is still a major ordeal. He can't play soccer for at least a month, and he has to stay off the playground at school. So he's having a rough month, feeling like he's missing out on things. We go back for more x-rays on November 1- to see how it's healing, and find out when he can participate in 'the fun stuff' as he calls it. Fingers crossed! 

Have you, or your little one broken a bone? 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Breast Cancer Awareness Month #Pinktober

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same. We have made a lot of progress but still have a long way to go and need your help! There are many companies that put out limited edition items to raise awareness for Breast Cancer.

The NFL supports the fight against breast cancer through "A Crucial Catch", which is a partnership with the American Cancer Society focused on the importance of annual screenings, especially for women who are 40 and older. Throughout October, NFL games will feature players, coaches and referees wearing pink game apparel, on-field pink ribbon stencils, special game balls and pink coins - all to help raise awareness for this important campaign. All apparel worn at games by players and coaches, along with special game balls and pink coins will be auctioned off at NFL Auction, with proceeds benefiting the American Cancer Society's Community Health Advocates National Grants for Empowerment (CHANGE) program. The CHANGE program provides outreach and breast cancer screenings to women in under served communities. You can support by purchasing your favorite NFL team's gear here.

OPI launched its seventh annual limited edition Pink of Hearts promotion, featuring the classic sheer pink shade Pink-ing of You and the new sparkle-packed hue More than a Glimmer. Pink of Hearts 2013 also includes pink ribbon and crystal decals (10 each). Available at

And visit Kimberlee's site I Have A Degree in This! for 5 more items to purchase in support of #Pinktober!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

2013 Fall Fashionista Giveaway

I'm very excited to announce my Fall Giveaway! The Fall Fashionista Giveaway Event is hosted by The Chief Blonde at Still Blonde After All These Years and Katy from ModlyChic. K Squared Glamour is our co-host! The Fall Fashionista giveaway is the largest fashion giveaway event on the internet with $26,000+ in prizes, 100+ participating blogs and 3/4 million entries. Each individual blog has a minimum of $125 prize so be sure to enter as many as you can! I'm giving away prizes from 3 different companies that would be a great addition to any mominista's collection!
Now and after t 

I am honored to announce that Thyme Maternity has agreed to sponsor my giveaway event. Thyme Maternity is an international maternity and nursing fashion brand, and their fall look book demonstrates the fact that they provide current trends for pregnant women! They are graciously providing a now-and-after t-shirt and a skincare item. This t-shirt is available in a variety of colors and sizes. It's great because you can wear it throughout your pregnancy, and after.

In addition, Blume has provided several items. One thing that I personally love about Blume is their support for children's charities. I also love that their items span things from personalized underwear, to personalized dog t's! Truly something for everyone. Blume has been very generous, and is providing a personalized onesie, a set of 3 bibs (can pick pink or blue), and burp clothsI love this company so much, my boys each have shirts from them- and I always get compliments!!

Amy O Jewelry DECO Channai Necklace
And last but not least, Amy O Jewelry has provided a bold statement necklace for the piece de resistance! You can select either mint or coral. AMY O. Jewelry is curated into four collections by style: PresheBohoRocker, and Glitz. I love their variety of pieces that you can mix with your signature style for a look that's perfectly you! AMY O. is designed in New York City and available online and at select boutiques in the U.S.

Enter below, and good luck! a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclaimer: Still Blonde after all these YEARS , Modly Chic, K Squared Glamour , Fall Fashionista Events Giveaway or the Fall Fashionista Events Giveaway bloggers are not responsible for sponsors/bloggers that do not fulfill their prizes or for any product failure or harm caused thereby.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Child Passenger Safety Week - Sept 15-21, 2013

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Did you know that this week is Child Passenger Safety Week? I thought it would be a great time to check- is your child in the right seat? Some parents may be unaware of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) change in policy from 2011. The AAP now advises parents to keep their toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age 2, or until they reach the maximum height and weight for their seat. It also advises that most children should ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until they have reached 4 feet 9 inches tall and are between 8 and 12 years of age.

Here is an overview of the new recommendations on car seats:

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Birth to 2 years: Your child under the age of 2 should ride in a rear-facing car seat. There are different types of rear-facing car seats: Infant-only seats can only be used rear-facing. Convertible and 3-in-1 car seats typically have higher height and weight limits for the rear-facing position, allowing you to keep your child rear-facing longer. 

Note: This is different from the AAP's prior recommendation of Birth to 1 year. 

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2 years through Preschool: Any child 2 years or older who has outgrown the weight or height limit for their rear-facing car seat should use a Forward-Facing car seat. This car seat should have a harness. Keep your child in this car seat for as long as possible, up to the highest weight or height allowed by the car seat's manufacturer. 

Children typically outgrow these car seats between the ages of 3 and 4.

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School Aged Children: Belt-positioning booster seats are the next step for children who have outgrown their Forward-Facing car seat. This seat is to be used until the vehicle seat belt fits properly, typically when the child has reached 4 feet 9 inches in height and are between 8 and 12 years of age.

Within this category of car seats, there are two different types- boosters with and without a back. My 5 year old is currently in a booster seat with a back, but I imagine he'll switch to one without a back next year.

I hope this information is helpful! If you need to have your car seat checked, go to to find a location near you. This Saturday is 'Seat Check Saturday'! 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Home Renovations

Now that we have moved into our home, we got started right away on our construction projects. We're doing two main things. First, we're adding a 4th bedroom, by cutting the master bedroom in half. Secondly, we're completely gutting the master bedroom.

An 'in process' shot of our bedroom
The 4th bedroom still needs a closet, and then we can paint it and set it up. I still feel like we're not really moved in, since we have so much of our 'stuff' in the garage. But little by little we're getting there.

The addition of the 4th bedroom will require a new entrance, as well. Below is a photo of the progress on that task. This particular item took a while to figure out the best way to enter the 'new' bedroom. I'm happy with how it's turning out!

And the master bathroom is gutted, can't wait to see what it looks like complete! The bathtub ending up coming out too, so there is literally nothing left. Today, the shower got framed, and the tile was ordered.

Have you gone through this process? I'm really glad it's not our kitchen, as I've lived through that in my parents' house. Tell me your home renovation stories!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

We FINALLY Moved!!

We were finally able to move into our new house. It took 2 months to close escrow. I could tell you all the things that I still need to do, all the things we will need to fix, or all the obstacles we faced this weekend. But I'm going to try to focus on the positive aspects of this week...

My handsome little man

Little J is settled in the house before he starts kindergarten. He will be attending a wonderful school, and he can even walk (with an adult) to his new school. Several kids that he went to preschool with are attending this school, so hopefully we'll know some people.

Finally, he has all his 'stuff'!

'Baby' Mayhem has his 'big boy' room all set up, and he LOVES it. He actually asked me to bring him to bed last night! He said, "Momma, I tired. Come to my room, read my dinosaur book." How can I argue with that?

The dogs are adjusting well to the new house, and are enjoying their backyard.

Our appliances (fridge, washer and dryer) arrived this week. We are a functional home again! AND Thursday was the first USC football game of the season. Fight on!

How was your Labor Day weekend? 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Can We Stop the Judgy Judging?!?!

As an emotionally drained, exhausted mother of two, I have a serious request. Can we PLEASE stop the judging? It seems that every blog I read has good intentions, but the comments! oh the comments! Mothers judging Mothers. It needs to end. Most mothers are just trying to NOT mess up their children, and maintain some sort of sanity during this extremely taxing process that we call 'raising children.'

None of us are perfect, by any means. I'll start with a few 'confessions'... 

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1. I formula fed my boys. I did not breastfeed. Gasp. And I don't feel guilty about it. Double gasp. Because they are both healthy, happy boys. Isn't that what is important? I actually did give it a go, both times- but decided that all the angst and drain were going to affect both myself AND the baby! 

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2. I work full time, outside the home. My kids are in the care of someone other than myself for a majority of the week. I am still raising my children, and making the decisions that will affect them. But I also enjoy my job, and get personal satisfaction from my work. I feel that this will be a benefit to my children in the long run.

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3. I yell at my children. I get frustrated, I get angry, and I lose it sometimes. I'm not always the understanding, caring mother that I would like to be. This goes doubly for the time that I have been a mother of two. Everything is intensified, and that's good and bad. 

Now that some of my so-called sins are out there, can't we just realize that parenting is different for everyone. AND, importantly, until you are a parent- you do not understand how you will parent! Reading other blogs, that much bigger than mine... I read the comments that people post, and I am shocked by what I read. 

People that are out there telling other mothers (or fathers) that they are 'doing it wrong' must be so insecure about their parenting! Why else would someone behave that way? Do you agree? 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Lego Birthday Party

Little J turned 5 on Saturday, and we celebrated with friends and family at Pump It Up. This was the first birthday party for either of our boys that we did at a location that wasn't a backyard or a park. I knew the kids would need to run around, and since we're 'between houses' right now... I figured a neutral location was best. 

It took a little time to J to warm up... I made this t-shirt with an iron-on decal from Clean Cut Studio (via Etsy)

I figured it would be a party that only the kids enjoyed, but I was very wrong about that! 
The 'big kids' enjoyed the party just as much as the little kids. My cousin, Mike, shown here with Mayhem

My brother, with a bucket on his head to protect himself from the crossfire.

I apologize for the 'through the net' photo, but this was hilarious. The 20-somethings enjoyed boxing each other, with oversized boxing gloves. Daddy J got in on this too, and enjoyed punching Uncle Andy.

All in all the party was a success. Little J was very happy. :) Everyone was tired, and took a wonderfully long nap in the afternoon. 

I made the cake, it was supposed to look like a lego. Don't mind the fact that it's TEAL. I highly recommend the 'easy' birthday party every once in a while, especially when you have a very active 2 year old to contend with. All we did was show up with a cake, and Pump It Up did the rest! It was so easy and the kids all had a blast. The adults enjoyed it more than they thought. 

Thanks to everyone who came out and made Little J's fifth birthday special! 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Bluum July 2013 Box- Social Butterfly

This month, Bluum made both of my boys happy. I loved the edibles in this month's box, and the book was great too!

Little Learners Press & Play Sound Book- This book is great! 45 sounds, and something for everyone. There are firefighters, teachers, ballerinas, builders and many others. The buttons aren't TOO loud, like some other books (Thomas, I'm looking at you)- so it's great for the car!

Paul Frank Monkey - We have a white monkey, now we have a brown one too. Little J is amassing a collection of these guys!

Kelly Toy Bumblebee Travel Pillow - Mayhem loved this, he now sleeps with it. His animal collection is getting a bit out of control...and Little J likes it too!

Nature's Bakery - Fig Bar - Whole Wheat Raspberry - These reminded me of Fig Newtons, which I ate as a child. I wasn't sure if Mayhem would like these, but he did! I tried a bite too, and I must say- they are delicious!

Sneakz Organics - Chocolate Milkshake - A full serving of vegetables, and doesn't have to be refrigerated (but tastes better if it has been!). This is a great idea for kids who love chocolate milk, and won't eat vegetables. What they don't know, won't hurt them!

Once again, another successful month! Thank you, Bluum!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Mayhem's Vacation

While the rest of our family had a completely normal vacation experience, I felt that Mayhem's experience deserved it's own post. He loves his Uncle John. Boys will be boys, and these two... birds of a feather.
Spending some time with Uncle John
Uncle John lives in NYC, and Mayhem lives in California. So the usual 'bonding time' is over FaceTime, as sad as that is. So Mayhem wanted to spend as much time with John as possible... 

Yes, he owns more than one shirt... I swear...
They won boardwalk games together, they swam together, they even slept in the same room. So of course, when the time came for Mayhem to visit the Emergency Room... guess who he wanted to come with us? Yep, Uncle John...

This kid, I swear, how many ER trips is this now?!

Oh, right- why did he have to go to the ER? Well, he developed swimmer's ear on Friday. He's pretty tough, but he wouldn't let us touch his ear and I knew right away... something was really wrong. So we located the closest medical facility that was open... and off to the ER we went. Grandpa drove us, since I'm not familiar with the highways in NJ. Mayhem was a perfect patient, probably because he's been to the ER several times before! 

Our trip to the ER left us with a diagnosis of swimmer's ear, and antibiotic ear drops. Friday night, he barely slept. He woke up several times, with a fever... and in quite a bit of pain. I was able to soothe him back to get a few hours of sleep. But Saturday, we were supposed to fly home. I was NOT thinking that would be a great idea with an ear infection. My poor sister flew with an ear infection once, and her ear drum burst! She said it was the most painful experience of her life, and she's been through a lot! So, back to the ER we went... and this time we got a prescription for antibiotics. This seemed to work, since we got through our Sunday morning flight pretty smoothly! 

Have you ever had to visit the Emergency Room on your vacation?

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

June 2013 Bluum Box: I Am A Big Kid Now

I received our June Bluum box prior to leaving for vacation, and I was happy it came! I used several of the items for our trip, including the Happy Family munchies and the sippy cups on the plane.

Happy Family - Creamies- Carrot, Mango & Orange ($3.59) Mayhem loved these. I was glad to have them as a healthy snack on the plane. It was lightweight, and I loved that they are made with coconut milk. A great item to have around the house for an active two year old!

Happy Family - Happy Munchies - Rice Cakes Blueberry & Beet ($3.00) We weren't so fond of these, but I'm sure there are other flavors that Mayhem would like.

The First Years - Take And Toss 4 Sippy Cups ($3.28)
I love Take and Toss items. Toddlers chew on, lose, and general destroy sippy cups in my experience. With this price tag, you don't have to worry as much and when you're done you can recycle them. It's simple. And I bring one of these on the plane, so you don't have to hold your toddler's apple juice for them. No spills!

Banz - Banz Kidz ($15.00) My kids always wanted to grab my sunglasses off my head when we're outside together. I was hoping these would prevent that. They didn't, but they are cute!

Little Learners - I Can Do Everything! ($10.00) A collection of several board books for the curious little one, who can't sit still for you to read a whole book!

Century Novelty - Beach Ball ($2.00) Fun for the pool, or the backyard!

StriVectin-EV - Get Even Brightening Serum ($22.00) For momma, a little boost for your complexion.

I love the personalized, age-appropriate goodies in our Bluum box this month. A happy customer!

What did you get in your Bluum box this month?

Jersey Shore Vacay 2013

Once a year, we head cross country to visit my family. My parents hosted a 4th of July picnic, and  both my mom's family and my dad's family came together. It was a full week this year, longer than we've stayed in the past. This meant we got to head into New York City, which was really fun!

We arrived into New Jersey late Saturday, my sister and brother picked us up at the airport and we headed to our parents' house. We relaxed Sunday, and spent lots of time in the pool. On Monday, the hubby, my sister, my brother and I headed into NYC. My siblings both live there, and we got to visit both of their apartments and experience a little bit of New York. It was pouring raining, so we didn't exactly get to tour much. But we did get to walk the HighLine. I loved it! The HighLine was wonderful.
So much history, and an amazing reuse with great views!
Tuesday we went to the American Museum of Natural History. Apparently, so did everyone else in NYC. It was raining, so people were flocking to indoor locations. We enjoyed the short time we were there, checking out the dinosaur exhibits in particular. Then we headed back to the Jersey Shore. Little J had so much fun looking at the dinosaurs!

We had our fair share of rain while we were there, and when it wasn't raining- it was humid! Californians aren't used to that... but we managed.

Sea Girt, NJ in the rain... 
We saw fireworks for the 4th, on my parents front lawn. Pretty convenient!

Watching fireworks with Daddy!
We also made it to the Point Pleasant boardwalk, which I was very curious to see after Hurricane Sandy. It looked fantastic! You could see patches of new boardwalk, and old. I was happy that they were able to get it back in business so quickly. Little J wanted a minion from Despicable Me, so we spent lots of money and effort to get him one!

Jacob and his minion
Mayhem also won big! Uncle John helped...

I won!
All in all, we had a great trip. Mayhem tried to sabotage our return to California. I think that story deserves its own post! More on that tomorrow...

Monday, June 24, 2013

Weekend Recap June 24, 2013

This weekend involved quite a bit of activity for our little family. Friday, I took Little J to the pediatrician for his kindergarten shots. He never wants, 'to get shot' again. I'll try to grant that request. Then, I met two friends from high school for a play date. We took 5 kids to 'Jump N Jammin' to let them run around and get all their energy out. Then we took them to lunch, here's a picture. They look tired, don't they!

From left to right: Brooklyn (little brother Alexander due
next month!), Mayhem, Mackenzie, Nathan, and Little J
Saturday, we had breakfast then back to the townhouse to pack up our stuff. We waited all day for the 'storage pods' to be dropped off. Then, we were the talk of the neighborhood as we had to ask a few people to move their cars... so the truck didn't hit them as it backed into our driveway... At 7:30 pm, they FINALLY dropped off the second 'pod'. It seemed like a long day, with no internet or cable. Then we went out to dinner, thankfully everyone held it together while we ate.

Sunday morning it was time to pack up the storage pods. The boys were so well-behaved, playing in the backyard with some random toys while we packed. They were COVERED in sand when we were done, but no worse for the wear. After naps, we ventured out for a little summer treat!  

Frozen yogurt- what a treat!
Now, we're waiting to close escrow on our townhouse. One step at a time, this process has been such a crazy roller coaster ride. But that's a whole other post...

How was your weekend? What did your family do?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Preschool is Over- Summer has begun!

Today was Little J's last day of preschool! I cannot believe how fast this year has flown by. We were very lucky to have a wonderful teacher, who sent home so many adorable keepsakes with him!

Little J with his teachers, Miss Jodi and Miss Caroline

They had a fun last day of school, with a pinata and a pizza party. Then the class sang for their parents, and the teachers handed out gifts. My favorite thing was the 'journal' that Miss Jodi made for each child, with pictures of EVERY major event they had throughout the entire year! What a great way to remember his first year of school! It's great to see his progression, too. He is writing clearer, drawing clearer, and articulating himself so much better!

We couldn't be prouder of our little graduate!!

Next, it's off to kindergarten!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Emotional Detachment

We have lived in our home for about 6 years. It's our first house as a married couple. We had two children while living there. We have countless wonderful memories, from bringing home the boys from the hospital, trick or treating, and Christmas mornings. But, we have outgrown the house and it's time to move. I moved several times growing up, most memorably from New Jersey to California right before I started high school. Maybe for this reason, I am not emotionally attached to our house. It could be because I never thought of it as our 'forever' house, but I'm not 100% sure.

My husband was born about 5 miles from where we live now. He has lived in a total of 3 houses, 2 that he remembers. He is very emotionally attached to our house, and can't figure out why I am not. Even some of our friends are more attached to the house that I am!

We're moving out in less than a week. The house is almost entirely boxed up, and all I am feeling is excitement for the next step. We get to move from a townhouse to a single family, detached house with a yard! It's a house we plan to stay in for a long time. In my head, it's a 'forever' house. We will make some changes, to customize it for our tastes. This is a house that I may just let myself become attached to...

 Are you emotionally attached to where you live? Am I wrong for not being attached to our first house?!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Bluum June box - Cover Up

I am a proud Bluum subscriber. Bluum caters your subscription box to your child's age and gender. I love it! I have been seriously slacking on posting about my boxes! This month, I was determined to post in a timely manner. So, we received our Bluum box this week. And here is what we got!

We got a Melissa and Doug starfish hat and starfish sunglasses, two 'pocket people', BabyGanics lip balm, two GoGo apple sauce packets, and two HappyTimes Sunny buddies snack packs. First of all, the GoGo packets and the snack packs are gone. As soon as I opened this box, my two boys devoured them all. My husband even tried the Sunny Buddies, and liked them! Also, this box is catered towards my two year old (Mayhem)... but apparently my older son LOVES the hat and sunglasses.

Yup, we need sun protection. We're really fair skinned. And we love snacks, so this box is great for us! We love Bluum! Thank you for our June goodies. Can't wait for next month. 

What did you get in your Bluum box?