EASY PICKINS

Which books are you must grabs for the summer reading list? What are the five best ways to style a scarf? Where are my spots for pimento cheese in the South? Find my favorite quick tips at Easy Pickins!

Getting Bold with Color

If you’ve ever visited my home, you will quickly find that I am a fan of a muted color palette. It can get a little drab, at times, but overall – I’m a sucker for black, white, gray and all neutral colors in between! As the mama to a spunky baby girl, I wanted to incorporate more color in our home (proven fact – color is key to development for babies!) My dear friend, Whitney Walker, is quite talented in both teaching me how to mama and building rooms with color.

The plus side of a home filled with neutrals – adding color is a cinch! Here are a few lessons learned from Whitney. How do you incorporate color in your home? Share your tips and tricks with me in the comment section below!

  1. Use what you have. Since I have a background of neutral, I chose to accent my master bedroom and living room with color. Bright lumbar pillows in green, purple and blue coordinate easily with my large linen throw pillows and white duvet.
  2. Start small. Add color simply with either a pillow or throw blanket. Especially in a very muted home, decor pieces are easy to swap out (especially if your apt to change your mind often!)
  3. Consider the walls. When trying to break out of my neutral rut, I looked to paint! I opted for a pale ice blue in our master bedroom and a mint green in our daughter’s room. The rest of the furniture is muted – so the walls pop perfectly…just enough color for me!
  4. Do the unexpected. If you’re really up for a change, repaint a piece of furniture, like a dresser or end tables. Alternatively, take a muted lamp and add a contrasting shade – something unexpected and dimensional!

Stay bright,

Parker

 


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Reimagining Salads

Let’s be honest. When you’re trying to eat healthy, salads become the go-to and quickly become boring. Today, I am sharing a few ways I reimagine the traditional salad in hopes of bringing you out of the doldrums of green and into the joy of color!

  1. Make it crunchy. I’m a sucker for berries atop my salads. I’ve taken the sweet tendencies a step further and added candied pecans to my traditional blueberry and strawberry salad. For even more crunch, consider a savory granola blend and honey-infused goat cheese. You’ll find the bottom of the bowl pretty quickly – I promise!
  2. Make it colorful. Salads don’t have to be filled with lettuce. Consider a base of cabbage and shredded carrots with sliced beets, cucumbers, tomatoes, black beans, and anything your palette desires. The more color you add, the more nutrients you’ll have!
  3. Make it wilted. One of my favorite tricks of the salad trade – sauteeting sliced sweet potatoes and topping the salad immediately with the searing hot veggies. Mixing cold greens with a warm protein or sautéed veggie will give you a beautifully wilted salad ideal for dinner time (or anytime in my book!)
  4. Make it plentiful. Try out a protein packed salad by adding steak, poached eggs, avocado and more. (For ideas, click on the image above!)

How do you change up your healthy eating routines? Share tips and tricks with me in the comment section below!

Stay green,

Parker


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Easter Decor | Inspired Wreaths

Growing up in Lexington, I distinctly remember my mother’s knack for crafting wreaths. Whatever holiday was around the corner, she had a stunning and festive wreath to celebrate. Our Christmas wreath remains my absolute favorite of all, but her focus on fresh cut flowers during spring festivities is a close second!

In searching for Easter wreaths, I found the above tulip wreath and garnered inspiration from the lush look of so many flowers and colors selected to develop such a beautiful piece of decor.

Consider an Easter wreath for your front door or even dining room table, filled with candles of varied heights or an Easter basket with treats for visitors. For a quintessential southern wreath, select dried cotton balls and branches for a monochromatic wreath. Use artificial flowers to enjoy your creation for months to come or consider fresh cut for an aromatic and unique centerpiece.

What are your tips and tricks for creating the perfect celebratory wreath? Share your thoughts with me in the comment section below! Click on the images for DIY tutorials and let me know your favorites!

Happy Spring,

Parker


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Decluttering for Spring

Especially as the mama of a non-stop moving (almost) one year old, it is easy for our house to become a cluttered mess in no time. We’ve worked to create somewhat of a routine to keep things in place.

  1. Laundry days: we choose a couple days a week to tackle large loads of laundry at once. We’re in the groove of washing and folding, so everything is done in chunks instead of sprinkled throughout the week (and ultimately piling up!)
  2. Room by room focus: Each day, one area of the house gets some extra love. Mondays, the kitchen gets the most attention. On Tuesdays, we tackle the bathrooms, Wednesdays the bedrooms, and so on. Just 10 minutes of cleaning goes a long way with this strategy!
  3. One item in, one item out: If we purchase new clothes or shoes, we remove an equivalent number of items from our closet and sell them on consignment or donate to a local center. This keeps our closet (mostly) organized and less crowded with unnecessary items – which would ultimately lead to a massive cleanup.

How do you keep the house clean and vibrant throughout the week? Share your decluttering and tidy up tips with me in the comment section below!

Your friend,
Parker


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Drink Up: Flavor Infused Water

As I mentioned last week in a previous post, my husband and I started Whole30. A key component of this shift in our nutrition includes increased water intake – and this is not an easy change for me!

Fortunately, Thomas started a new routine several weeks ago (as he’s been pushing me to drink more water for months!) Every day, I open our fridge to find a beautiful glass pitcher full of fruit-infused water. Typically, he changes the water every 3 to 4 days, offering a new and fresh flavor to enjoy. Below are a few of my favorite renditions of this powerful, healthy, and vibrant twist on water!

How do you encourage ample water intake per day? Share your tips and tricks in the comment section below!

Drink up,

Parker

Key ingredients: Apple, grape, lemon and orange

Key ingredients: Strawberry and Mint

Key ingredients: Lime and Cherry

Key ingredients: Cucumber and Melon

 


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Whole30 Inspired Lunches from the Pros

For whatever reason, my husband decided he wanted to start March off with a challenge. For the next 30 days (except for one tiny blip on the calendar for an event we’re slated to attend..which happens to be a food event), we’re eating whole foods. That means our pantry and fridge are stocked with grass fed beef, all natural chicken, unprocessed anything, and all. the. eggs.

While on this month long journey, I thought I would share a “day in the life” of our meal prep. Aside from whole fruits and raw almonds, below are some staples we’re preparing week after week.

Have you ventured into anything similar? Do you have some go-to favorites for healthy eating? Share your recipes with me in the comment section below!

Happy snacking,
Parker

Breakfast Muffins

Chicken Salad with Bacon and Scallions

Chicken Stir-fry over Cauliflower Rice

 


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Cooking with Coffee

Obviously, as a new mom, I am knee deep in coffee by 9:00 a.m. Recently, I was tossing out some coffee grounds and my husband reminded me how useful they are in various recipes. His father uses them in his gravy recipe and as a rub on steaks – both of which are phenomenal.

To make use of the (plentiful) leftover grounds in our home, I spent time looking for recipes! Below are a few I am trying in the coming weeks. Do you reuse coffee grounds? Any tips and tricks on the best methods for storing them? Share all the details with me in the comment section below!

Stay caffeinated,

Parker

Coffee Grounds Rub

Coffee Grounds Biscotti

Momofuku Compost Cookies


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Valentine’s Tradition | Iced Cookies

Every year in college, my grandfather sent me iced cookies for Valentine’s Day from our favorite (then small) cookie company – Cheryl’s. After he passed, my mother picked up the tradition…even when I moved more than 3,000 miles west to Vancouver, British Columbia. No matter where I was, she found a way to get cookies to my doorstep on this very special day.

As our daughter grows up, I am excited to begin the cookie tradition with her – but in a different way. I am on the search now for easy sugar cookie recipes we can start together (when she’s standing, of course)! Below are a few I have found to try with her and our neighbors. Do you have favorite recipes from your childhood? Any other traditions you share on Valentine’s Day with those you love? Tell me more in the comment section.

Happy day of LOVE,
Parker

 


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Simple Steps to Gain More Time in the Morning

Let’s have a real conversation about time. How often do you wake up and think “I just don’t have enough time to get everything done today?” (Here’s me raising my hand!) Immediately, the day becomes constricting and frantic. As a working mom, this feels especially true right now. Here are a few tips and tricks I’ve implemented to bring more space to our day!

  1. Put away your phone. This is still requiring an intentional choice from me – my alarm is on my phone, and as such, it is too easy to check a couple emails or scroll Facebook first thing in the morning. These precious minutes – the first ones of my day – deserve more than technology. I now turn off my alarm, and leave my phone on the nightside table while preparing for the day ahead.
  2.  Make the coffee at night. There is something ironically relaxing about the fresh aroma of coffee filling our kitchen each morning. We like to use freshly ground beans, so the night before I typically preset the coffee pot to finish brewing as we wake up. I love starting my day with a warm cup of coffee before our little one is awake!
  3. Pick an outfit the day before. Each night, I lay out a few items to choose from, so when my sleepy eyes pop out of the shower, I can easily choose and go – no fuss and no stress!
  4. Meal plan. It sounds simple, but making a few grab-and-go food items, or at least prepping and stocking your fridge and pantry with favorite go-tos, eliminates the thought process when you first wake up. Less thinking, more nourishment!
  5. Choose gratitude. Words are powerful. Just this week, I had an amazing conversation with a dear friend who reminded me how our day can shift when we choose to think “I have the time I need.” Each morning, I choose one thing for which I am grateful, and begin my day from there.

What are some ways you create a bit more space in your day? Share your thoughts with me in the comment section below.

With love,

Parker


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Cooking Up Good | Vegetables

In these chilly winter months, I’ve added delicious root vegetables and hearty greens to our nightly meals. I find such comfort (and immunity support) in adding more veggies to our grocery list. However, I wanted to find new ways to bring flavor to the same vegetables I enjoy week after week. Thankfully, this desire for tasty vegetables coincided perfectly with one of my goals for 2018: experiment with a new recipe once a week!

In looking for creative, flavorful and healthy recipes, I have researched several food blogs and celebrated chefs for idyllic takes on winter vegetables. My newest go-to chefs for all things healthy and delicious: Angela Liddon of “Oh She Glows” and Danielle Walker of “Against All Grain.”

Below are a few of my favorite methods for cooking Wilson staples (carrots, brussel sprouts and sweet potatoes!) Click on the images to read more and share a link to your favorite recipe in the comment section below!

Stay toasty,

Parker


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parker

I am Parker. My mom, Lynda, is the owner and President of National Wholesale. We are a woman’s apparel company that I’m hoping you know about but if not, you’ll be inspired to learn. We’ve been around since 1952. And the business was started by my entrepreneurial grandfather, “Georgie” with the support of my grandmother, GaGa. I’ve been surrounded by clothing and hosiery since the day I was born. I've also been surrounded by the drive to stay in business, which means connecting with our customers.

So, this is my story.

And in a way, yours too. Welcome.

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