$10 at Target: Advent Calendar Goodies

I've always loved the idea of an Advent calendar, but most years it's November 29 before I think about actually doing one. This year though, I vowed to plan ahead and create a fun, simple Advent calendar with fun family activities, books, and small treats.

I'll share more details about my Advent calendar next week, but for now I'll show you a few things I found at Target to get me started.

Live Your Best (Holiday) Life: Week 4

A cold took us down one by one over the weekend, but it was a blessing in disguise, because it meant extra time for rest and relaxation (albeit with lots of tissues handy). Of course no one wants to be sick, but I'll take some sniffles if it means I get a nap on Saturday. I already feel much better, and I think everyone else is on the mend too. Anyway, here are last week's highlights and this week's prompts for Live Your Best (Holiday) Life for Less.

{What is #LYBHolidayL?}

Alexandra, of Simply Alexandra, and I created a challenge for the month of November to help us focus on self-care, contentment, and gratitude this holiday season. Each day we have a prompt to inspire creativity, organization, and a sense of peace during this often crazy month. 

Every Monday we'll each share the week's prompts on our blogs, with ideas for ways to incorporate them into your life. We'd love for you to join in! You can find the full list of prompts on Instagram, and also at the bottom of this post. Be sure to tag your posts with #LYBHolidayL so we can see them.

In My Library Tote: Preschool Books on Favorite Subjects

I love to bring home a variety of books to read with Jona. I'm often surprised by the ones he loves, and the variety ensures that there are several that I love as well. However, books on certain subjects are guaranteed to please. Today's round-up features books about dinosaurs, construction vehicles, and robots, all of which are favorite subjects for my four-year-old boy.

{preschool books: favorite subjects}

Floral Swing Dress for Fall

I love dresses. Any season, they are one of my favorite things to wear. However, in the year after having Violet, most of my dresses sat in my closet, unworn, because they were not nursing or pumping-friendly. Now that my body is no longer being used to feed a child, I'm saying hello again to all my dresses.

Recently eShakti reached out to me about collaborating, and the first thing that came to mind was "Ooh, I know they have some great dresses!" I got a dress from eShakti in the past and was very happy with it. I did a little research and learned that eShakti is committed to providing a safe working environment for all employees, and at its factories in India they have a minimum age requirement of 18 and they exceed the minimum wage by 70%. Shopping more ethically has been one of my more recent goals, and one of the reasons I've been shopping secondhand for the past few months. (My secondhand challenge is still going strong--I just can't say no to a gorgeous, ethically-made, FREE dress!)

Anyway, what I love about eShakti is that they have seemingly limitless options for customization. I was drawn to this pretty print dress because of the gorgeous fall colors and swingy shape. I opted for full-length sleeves instead of the original three-quarter sleeves, because I prefer that style (cold wrists and forearms, no thank you). I also changed the neckline from a jewel neck to a scoop neck, because I think it's more flattering with the swingy shape. I absolutely love this dress and I'm happy with the customizations that I selected; it really does feel like the perfect fall dress for me.

Here are two ways to wear a floral swing dress in cool fall weather.