favorite things 2017: my sister Kerri

16 November 2017

Hello! Please meet my youngest sister, Kerri here to guest post for us today to share her favorite things! Kerri is incredible: she is a registered dietician, she teaches classes at a community college, she is always do projects and crafty things or helping someone with a party. She’s also super fit and healthy, an awesome Mom and wife, so fashionable, my kids adore her as an aunt, and is just a go-getter in everything. I’m so proud to be her sister!

kerri favorite things

Hello! My name is Kerri and I am the youngest of the four sisters. This is an awesome (and also very intimidating) opportunity to be part of Favorite Things week this year! As you have seen, all my sisters are SO talented and I am grateful to have them for my inspiration and example; because lets be honest, I need it! Here are some of my favorite things that I hope you will enjoy as well:

* Bobbi Brown Soothing Cleansing Oil

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I am not a department store makeup kind of girl. Give me the best that Wal-Mart or Target has and call it good! This cleanser is the exception. I came across it when I stumbled into Bloomingdale's after a red eye flight from LAX to NYC and was lookin' pretty bad (hotel check-in wasn't until 3). Luckily one of the makeup counter ladies took pity on me and started her repair work with this cleansing oil. It was like receiving a mini facial right there in the store. You directly apply the oil to your skin without water then rinse. It literally dissolves your makeup right off...no residue left on the towel! There is a reason it has all 5 star review ratings. The best part is, I just used about 1.5 pumps every night and the bottle lasted me a whole year! Worth the money, hands down.

* Revlon Liquid Eyeliner

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I have worn this eyeliner since high school. It doesn't smudge or fade and can be used lightly for an everyday look or you can go thicker for an evening out. If you haven't used liquid eyeliner before, I highly recommend it, although it does take a little practice at first :).

* Rescue Dogs

kerri winston

It took almost two years for us to get pregnant with Avery and I was struggling a lot emotionally; especially after we moved into our house. It just felt...empty. We decided to checkout a rescue shelter one day and there he was: Winston! He is our 3 year old Bichon-poodle mix that was abandoned by his previous owners. We absolutely ADORE him. Anyone who knows us will attest to that (yes, we have become those people). He came neutered, fully vaccinated and was even potty trained. All for a $100 adoption fee. If you are looking for a family dog, please call your local shelter and let them know what you are looking for (Bichons are great family dogs,don't shed, and put up with crazy trunk or treat costumes!). Many facilities will keep your contact information and call you when something comes in. You will be saving tons of money and a special pup's life!

* Dipsy Dabber

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My sister Kristin, the paint expert, introduced me to these and I LOVE them! They keep leftover paint ready and easily accessible with a small brush that can be used for any quick touch-ups on your wall. It has been a lifesaver in my hallways and kitchen breakfast bar.

* the soften button on the microwave

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This has been a game changer for me in the kitchen. I discovered the "soften" button on my microwave a few months ago and it is AWESOME. I have ruined so many sticks of butter trying to get them softer in the microwave only to have the middle melt out. It even has a setting for how many sticks you want to soften at a time. Check your microwave to see if you have one and if you are in the market for a new one, get one with this button! Mine is a GE Profile.

* Kraft Caramel Bits

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Another game-changer in the kitchen. Have you ever unwrapped an entire bag of traditional caramels??? Pure torture.These bits are the only things that allow us to, a) sanely host our caramel apple party every year and b) do it affordably. I just dump the bags into my crockpot and add a little heavy cream and vanilla. Each bag covers about 5 apples. Target sells them in the baking aisle for about $2.00 per bag and they often go on clearance in the holiday section. Try them out for any caramel baking needs you may have. The caramel brownie recipe on the back of the bag is also delicious!

* Everything Boot Pack

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I have snow skiied for as long as I can remember with my dad and have always had a boot bag like this. Luckily I married into a snow skiing family and  have purchased them these bags for Christmas gifts because they are SO convenient. One ski boot goes in each side pocket and then there is a middle pouch that stores helmets, goggles, gloves, neck gaiters, hand warmers, ski socks etc. So all we have to do is grab them off the hooks in our garage and go! No more forgetting those small but very essential ski accessories! I put them under "travel" because thy keep everything nice and organized in the car or you can check them at the airport. If you have a snow sports enthusiast in your life, this is a perfect gift for them.

* Intuitive Eating book

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This book is HUGE in the field of nutrition and dietetics. These two amazing dietitians have paved the way in mindful and intuitive eating. I am a registered dietitian as well and had a private office where I was referred patients who were trying to eat healthier, lose weight, prepare for bariatric surgery, manage their diabetes, etc, etc. I recommended this book to ALL of them. Those who took it seriously and applied its principles during our time together had great success. A few even opted out of having surgery because they met their goals and finally found peace with eating. It even has helped me personally break out of the "diet" mentality and develop a healthy relationship with my food. I no longer have "restricted" foods and enjoy any food I want, but do so mindfully. The ironic thing is since doing this I'm about 20 lbs lighter than I was my senior year of high school. It's not really a "program", but rather a shift in your mental attitude and approach towards food. It's an easy ready that is full of those "ah-ha" moments. A perfect thing to implement during the holidays where there seems to be such anxiety surrounding food and excessive calorie intake. There is even a workbook to go with it.

* Refiner’s Fire Book Series

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This is a phenomenal series. Lynn Austin is actually a Christian author but writes in a way that does not feel "preachy" and any denomination of faith can enjoy her writing. These books take place during the Civil war from three different perspectives: a young woman in the north, a young woman in the south and a young woman who grew up as a slave. The stories include romance, humor, suspense, some historical background and good core values. Reading them made me want to be a better, kinder person.

My husband and I had our first little baby in May so I have had a crash course in pregnancy, baby gear and parenthood this year! Whew! A few things I came across that I have really loved are:

* Asos Maternity

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I love ASOS! Two Peas in a Pod was more than what I wanted to pay for clothes I could only wear for a few months. Plus, free shipping and returns is a must for me when I order online. On ASOS I order a lot of multiple sizes to find the best fit then send back what I don't want.  I often order too much with the intention that "oh I'll return at least half of this" and then wind up keeping it all! With how cheap some of the prices are I can kind of justify it??

* DaVinci Swivel Glider

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I searched high and low for the *perfect* rocker and about died when I saw that ones on Pottery Barn were going for as much as $1500! Ummm, I think I'd rather pay my mortgage, thanks. The problem I kept running into is any glider/rocker was TOO SHORT and had zero neck support. When your husband is 6'2 that won't fly. I'm 5'6" and most were even too short for me. Head/neck support without slouching was essential for us. Add on top of that wanting a stylish design and affordablity = a tough search. Cue the davinici glider! It is tall, sleek , glides AND swivels, and includes the ottoman and a lumbar pillow. We got ours in cream from Target. Not only do you get free shipping, 5% off with the redcard but if you use your 10% registry completion discount, it drops it down to about $250! We ended up getting ours free with gift cards. Two of my friends have also gotten one based on my recommendation and they love theirs too! I did a coat of scotch-guard on it to make spit-ups an easy clean-up :).

They also carry them on Amazon where you could apply your 10% registry discount as well

* Stroller hooks

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These are a permanent fixture on my stroller. I use them everyday for my diaper bag, shopping bags, friend's/mom's/sister's purses, grocery bags, little jackets, you name it! Sturdy and reliable. I prefer these over the caribeaner type because it's easier to get the bags on and off quickly.

* Carseat canopy + nursing cover

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Another everyday essential. I have used it for a nursing cover, carseat cover (keeps grimey hands OUT!) and a makeshift blanket when needed. Washes easy and is breathable. My favorite part is having my back covered when I'm nursing and not having to worry about it falling down and flashing the world. WAY cheaper than the milk snob covers and it also includes a stroller hook and little carrying sack. Score!

* Plush Crib Sheet

This is the softest.thing.ever. My 8 year old niece even asked to sleep in my daughter Avery's crib when she stayed with us because it is just so so plush. Still tight fitting to ensure safety but it's something I feel good laying my baby girl down to sleep on.

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* Baby Bling Hair Bows

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I have been through a lot of different bows and have finally settled on these. They don't leave indents on Avery's head, make up for her lack of hair and are just stinkin cute! The huge selection of colors and patterns is also awesome. I recommend buying off of Nordstrom because it's free shipping. Otherwise you have to do a minimum order of $60 from the Baby Bling Bows websites to qualify for free shipping. I have one in pretty much every color.

Thanks for being our guest today, Kerri!  You can see the rest of 2017 Favorite Things here.

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