Here's how the gene pool went for me: I inherited good legs and bad skin.

I usually convince myself that it's a pretty good trade off, since long and lean legs are a little harder to come by than new makeup, but, I'm also in my 30s now and I still break out occasionally (thank you, postpartum hormones) and I'm also starting to get wrinkles early. So, there you go. Good legs and bad skin. We all have our things.

To help my skin a little I'm trying out a few ideas, like the common sense skin care regime (drinking more water, finding my sunscreen, taking vitamins) but I wanted a little more backup without the Botox and have a few discoveries to share.


My general rule here is less is more. I use a very basic cleanser and hardly anything else on my face. When I want backup for a beakout or wrinkles, Derma-E has an Anti-Wrinkle line I like and Spot Treatment, and I like that it's available at Whole Foods, which I generally use as a benchmark for more "natural-ish" products.


Esmi is a line from Australia that I recently discovered and am loving. It's SPF, mineral based, and has excellent coverage and staying power. I like flat brushes for mineral based makeup application, and this one is vegan and works great. I wear color II-III in the winter and III-IV in the summer. If you're similar in skin tone to me and debating between the two I'd recommend III-IV.


First, at home microdermabrasion with ReVit. There's plenty of science and technology behind micoderm, but it's basically just sloughing away the outermost layer of the skin so that new skin beneath is generated faster to promote healing. I like this one because it uses diamond exfoliation as opposed to aluminum oxide crystals (technical terms, just do your research there) and overall I prefer this method to a chemical exfoliate.

Second, red light and heat therapy with FaceFx. Red Light Therapy aids in elastin and collagen production, similar to blue light therapy for seasonal depression. This little device feels kind of light saber, Star Wars-esque, in that it's this wand with light and heat on your face. It's pleasant and spa-like, and it seems like my fine lines have improved. Both this and the microderm tool can be used together and while pregnant and/or nursing.


I consider myself generally well versed in supplements and natural health, but this was a new one for me. When I'm unsure on a health product I check with Wellness Mama, a podcast and blog I discovered when pregnant. She has this and this to say about collagen and since my hair/skin/nails have taken a toll post-baby, I was game. She recommends grass-fed varieties like Vital Proteins. The way I take it is I mix Collagen Peptides or Marine Collagen Sticks in my latte each morning. I love that it has no taste and gives a protein boost to slow caffeine absorption. If I make a green smoothie I'll add Collagen Beauty Greens since this one can only be mixed with cold liquids. If I was just choosing one product I'd go with the classic Collagen Peptides for the hot/cold mixability option.

While these things all can be fun to try, with any beauty product I share I also want to mention that I know that real beauty is more than just skin deep. Surface level beauty can only take us so far. I value kindness, strength, and compassion more than any wrinkle-fighter out there.

Shared in partnership with Derma-E, Esmi, SkinFx and Vital Proteins. Cheers to real beauty.


Because kids aren't the only ones who deserve a treat from the Easter bunny, moms (and anyone caring for children!) can get in on the fun too.


A cute take on a non-traditional Easter basket is to fill something she'll use again and again (like this soft as butter leather tote) with thoughtful, smaller items. This one is oversized and works for all seasons. (The less expensive version in pale pink canvas is here.) Other vessel options that double as gifts: a market basket, straw bag, or cute backpack.


Water bottle so she'll never have to reach for a plastic bottle again. This one is insulated, making drinks ice cold for 24 hrs, plus it has a straw lid attachment which is a make-or-break feature on water bottles for me. It's made responsibly and gives back to state parks. The one I have is the 32oz and how I feel about that size is like Goldilocks: not too big or too small, just perfect.

Outfit. I love this adorable spring romper by Matter. They have a cool transparent makers process, employing artisans in India. If you have a daughter this little girls dress can be worn for multiple years, as a dress, then tunic, then tank. More info here.

Leather stash clutch. I have this one in multiple colors, I think it combines the best of both form and function. It's roomy enough for my wallet, keys, phone, and it's so nice to travel light and just grab this instead of a purse when I'm out without the baby.

Reusable, well designed grocery bags (great for non-grocery items too!) Cutest colors and prints, ethically made, well priced, and they hold up to 50 lbs while still storing/folding into tiny pockets. Adorable new plant prints for spring are here and here.

Flowers. Bonus point for ones from your local farmers market.

Ideas for extra little items: nail polish/lip balm/lip gloss/chocolates/pedicure gift certificate.

Pack all your tinys in reusable, zippered pouches, for cute packaging that will get extra use. (I use these for organizing diapers and wipes in a big tote. Spring colors here and here.)

Top with colorful tissue paper or plastic pastel Easter eggs.

Hopefully this will spark some ideas. Mother's Day is just around the corner and any of these would make a cute gift basket for that as well.

Shared in partnership with most companies listed.


I saw this book years ago and loved the concept for kids, that being kind to people is like "filling their buckets." Such an neat analogy and tangible way to teach young children about about a big concept - the importance of being kind. I'm excited to have these conversations with Trey as he gets older.

As moms, we figuratively fill our kids' baskets in so many ways every day: listening, attending to, holding, rocking, feeding, playing with, and infinitely more actions that convey our thoughts about them: that they are seen and known and wanted and so loved. I thought about all these things as I was filling Trey's Easter basket, hoping that I'm better at filling his emotional bucket than this little Easter basket. It was a good reminder for me of what's important. Whether you fill Easter baskets for your kids or not - know that you are filling their buckets in the lasting ways, the ways that really matter. If you are filling actual Easter baskets, here are some ideas, many of which are ethically made, run by small businesses, and/or gift back to causes.


Basket ideas: I used something we already had, a reusable tote. (Link is to the smaller Pint size, perfect for doubling for the egg hunt, or you can also use any basket or bucket you have lying around.)

Bunnies. Up your Easter bunny game with a bunny that gives back. Two excellent choices here: Benedict the bunny by Cuddle and Kind (donates 10 meals to a child in need for each doll purchased) and Pierre the bunny by Blablakids. Both are ethically made, fair trade, and hand knit by artisans in Peru.

Bella Bliss monogrammed outfit. Easter outfits mean bubble rompers and monograms to me, so I grabbed this cute one. (You might recognize the company when I discovered it last summer, they're my favorite special occasion outfits for babies.) Bella Bliss does good too, the clothing is made by artisans in South America, and they give back to a variety of child-focused non-profits.

Books: Guess How Much I Love You is a cute little bunny board book. And if your family celebrates the meaning of Easter, the Jesus Storybook Bible is one of the best kid's Bibles around.

Hat by George Hats. They carry the tiny sizes: baby, toddler, and child, for the best fit. We haven't seen much (if any!) sun in the PNW yet this year, but I imagine this getting a lot of use this summer.

Backpack. That cutie striped one is by Fluf, a Canadian company. It's mini sized, perfect for a preschooler or as a lunch box for adults.

Shoes. These are by Stride Rite, in a bright color for spring. Walking is just around the corner for us (which I can't even imagine right now!).

Other ideas for small fillers for older kids: bubbles, play dough, puzzles, sunglasses, swimsuits, and the ultimate baby gifts: paper, a wooden spoon, and a cardboard box, because the non-toys are always the best toys.

Speaking of non-toys, I need to sing the praises of good old fashioned Easter eggs. These are most definitely not ethically made, but I picked them up for $1 and they have endless uses and are currently Trey's favorite toy. I fill them with uncooked swirly pasta to make kind of DIY egg shakers and he thinks they're the best thing he's ever seen. They double as decor (in a glass vase high out of reach) and also as bath toys and everyday toys and can be used open or closed or to hide things in. They're the perfect size: small enough to grasp but not choke on, lightweight enough to stash a few in my purse, a platform for language development (colors, numbers, music, etc.) and just all around fun. I think I'll keep them around long after Easter.

Happy basket filling!

Shared in partnership with most companies.