Weekend Recap: Blackouts, Delicious Food & Art Fair

By: Annie Wagner

Annie here – we had quite the weekend in Ann Arbor. Brian and I had date night plans on Friday to celebrate our five year anniversary since we have a new live in nanny – my sister, Emma ;). Our plans were foiled by crazy storms and a 20 hour power outage. Thankfully we have very sweet friends Hunter, Jillian and their daughter and Margot’s bestie, Maya, invited us over for a sleepover in their air conditioned house. Thank goodness for good friends (who also happened to have power). We made the best of the situation and woke up early Saturday morning and had a lovely breakfast on the patio before it got too hot to be outside.

While we waited for our power to come back on we enjoyed one of our favorite gourmet lunches, chicken bakes at Costco – YUM.

After lunch and some errands, we came home to our power back on and all took naps in the air conditioning. We ended our Saturday with dinner and water games outside back at our friends house. Jillian made a delicious meal – Shauna Niequist’s Lemon Dill Soup and Summer Salad from her cookbook Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, As You Are (recipes pictured below) – nothin like hot soup on the hottest day of the year! Call us crazy but it was SO good and refreshing. I’d eat that soup on the sun.

Sunday morning was a little cooler so we decided to head to the Ann Arbor Art Fair. This is one of our little towns biggest events of the year that brings artists from all over the world and over 400,000 visitors! We enjoyed all kinds of art as well as some delicious fair food.

After a very hot weekend, we decided to stay in Sunday evening and make tostadas and watch season 2 of Big Little Lies. If you don’t have HBO, now is the time to start your free trial and binge watch both seasons of BLL – we haven’t finished the second season so no spoilers please!!

Sending cooler weather your way!

xoxo Annie

Margot Maeve Turns ONE!

By: Annie Wagner

We had a busy weekend in Ann Arbor celebrating our youngest sister cousin’s first birthday! My parents came to town from Southern California for the weekend and we started the celebrations on Thursday night at the Ann Arbor Summer Festival. Nothing like a barefoot baby dancing around a beer garden to kick of her birthday weekend!

We got home Thursday night to a broken air conditioner and then spent the day Friday in our sauna of a house doing all the party food prep (going into heat stroke to make your daughter’s first birthday special – priceless). We made pulled pork sliders in the crockpot and served them with a fruit salad, arugula salad, and our family’s famous potato salad (recipes below). 

Saturday afternoon was party time. The ac was fixed just in time for 25 people to be in the house. We had all of Margot’s little friends over and they played games and celebrated all afternoon. Margot went to town on her Lemon Raspberry Cake – we had to pry it away from her and distract her with all of her new birthday presents! We felt so grateful for all of the people who spoiled our little girl on her big day. There’s nothing like seeing how much your loved ones love your baby :).

On Sunday we went to a birthday brunch at our new favorite spot in town – Anna’s House. The birthday girl took a long nap that afternoon while we packed up for our trip to Clear Lake for the week! Monday morning we got on the road bright and early to head to the CLC motherland! We got to stop in Brooklyn to see family and two statues that were put up to honor Mollie <3.

Wishing you all a safe and happy 4th! Stay tuned for updates from Clear Lake!

Xo, Annie


Homemade Potato Salad:

5 pounds potatoes

8 – 10 hard boiled eggs

3 cups mayonaise

1 1/2 cups mustard

1/2 cup pickle juice

1/2 cup diced dill pickles

1/2 cup diced green onions

Salt and Pepper to taste

Paprika for garnish

Instructions: Boil and peel eggs. Peel and boil potatoes until easily pierced through with a fork (15-20 minutes). Chop eggs and potatoes and place in a large bowl. Add pickles and onions. In a small bowl mix together mayo, mustard, pickle juice, salt and pepper. Add the mayo mixture to the large bowl and stir everything together. Garnish with paprika and store in the fridge.

Arugula Salad:

1 bag baby arugula

Zest of one lemon

Juice of one lemon

1/2 cup toasted almonds

1 pint blueberries

1/2 cup shaved parmesan

2 Tbsp E.V.O.O.

Instructions: Combine ingredients and serve!

Fruit Salad:

1 cup diced pears

1 cup diced nectarines

1 pint raspberries

1 cup diced kiwi

Instructions: Combine ingredients and serve!

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads in our lives! We’ve compiled our favorite gift ideas for dads, grandads, husbands or anyone who has been a father figure to you. Brian, Ryan, Tim, Skip and Uncle Butter – I know you guys hang out on our blog all day long but you’re going to have to wait until June 16th to come back to this post 😉

Nicole’s Picks

Emily’s Picks

Annie’s Picks

Emma’s Picks

Happy Father’s Day!!

Weekend Recap from Ann Arbor

By: Annie Wagner

It’s beginning to look a lot like summer…

We started off our weekend on Friday afternoon when Brian came home early from work to enjoy the perfect summer weather with us. We had a pool party playdate followed by a BBQ with friends! I linked our Ingenuity SmartClean Trio Elite 3-in-1 High Chair – we use this all day everyday and LOVE how easy it is to use and clean. Also linked our Charbroil Gas Grill – where most of our meals come from all summer long, and the Intex Kiddie Pool – Margot’s home for the next few months 😉

A big storm came through Saturday morning so we decided to stay in and bake. First we made pancakes for breakfast and Margot was in heaven…she downed six pancakes and wanted more #ParentingGoals. Then I was inspired by our favorite show – The Great British Baking Show – to make a Victoria Sponge Cake (recipe below). I had all the ingredients in my pantry and it was much easier than I anticipated. Not to toot my own horn, but it was DELICIOUS (toot toot).

Saturday afternoon we went over to a friends house to watch the Champions League soccer game and enjoy homemade paella. Two teams from England were playing (Liverpool vs. Tottenham) which is what inspired our British themed day. #LongLiveTheQueen

While we were there, the other kids were napping and Margot decided to take advantage of six adults watching her and show off her walking skills for the first time…such a ham! This Vtech Baby Walker is awesome. It has different speed settings so she can slowly control her steps while she learns to balance.

After two days of partying and eating, we enjoyed a low-key Sunday at home. After updating our front porch and herb pots, we took a long walk through County Farm Park with our City Select Baby Jogger Stroller. We LOVE this stroller and it has a second seat kit for future kids (or to use with friends), and there are tons of accessories and attachments to add as your little ones grow! We had pesto chicken pasta for dinner using the pre-marinated Pesto Genovese Chicken Breasts from Trader Joes with our favorite simple pasta recipe: olive oil, garlic, chopped tomatoes, salt & pepper and a splash (or a cup) of white wine sautéed together and served over your favorite kind of pasta. We ended the weekend binge watching VEEP – highly recommend if you have not yet seen it!

Happy June!

Recipe: Victoria Sponge Cake



  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 2/3 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp whole milk


  • 1 1/2 cup lightly sweetened whipped cream
  • 1/2 cup strawberry jam
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries (optional)
  • Powdered sugar


  1. Preheat your oven to 350F and prepare two 9 inch pans.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy..
  3. Beat in the eggs, one at a time until completely combined.  Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, salt and baking powder.  Stir flour mixture into butter mixture.
  5. Add the milk and vanilla and mix until completely combined.
  6. Spread in your prepared pans and bake for 12-15 minutes or until they test done.
  7. Cool for 10 minutes in the pans and then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.
  8. To serve, spread jam over bottom layer of cake.  Top with strawberry slices if using, the spread with fresh whipped cream.  Top with remaining cake layer and dust with powdered sugar.

Rifle Paper Co. Collabs

By: Annie Wagner

Spring is here which means it’s time for all things floral! We wanted to share some of our favorite Rifle Paper Co. collaboration items with you.


How darling would these look on your feet all Summer?!

These Mommy and me Garden Party Sneakers are too cute!


I already cannot wait to sip rosé in these Stemless Wine Cups on the patio all summer. Also great for keeping your drink nice and cool for long boat rides on the lake :).


Beautiful rugs and pillows – how darling would this Luxembourg Rose rug be in a little girls room (heart eyes). I love love these Throw Pillows. Being from Southern California and my dad being from England, these Los Angeles and London pillows are too perfect to pass up!

Here are some of our favorite classics…

My sister, Emma (our Denver Clear Lake Cousin) got me this Recipe Box and Recipe Cards for Christmas last year. It was such a great gift idea! It looks so cute on my kitchen counter and she even filled in some recipe cards to get me started :).

I love these Notebook Sets and Notepads! I have them in drawers all over my house and use them for to-do lists, notes, and journaling.

My most recent Rifle Paper Co. find is this Weekly Meal Planner. We waste SO much food and are always trying to be better about meal planning. What better way to find motivation than with a pretty meal planning calendar!

Treat yourself to a pretty floral pick me up today!

Weekend Recap from Ann Arbor

By: Annie Wagner

Cinco de Mayo, Derby Day, and house projects galore!

After a long winter and very rainy April, Spring has finally arrived in Ann Arbor! We took full advantage of the sunny weekend tackling house projects while managing to sprinkle in some fun!

We were very pleased to wake up Saturday to a beautiful morning. After what felt like 54 months of winter, we could not wait to finally get outside! We started off with breakfast and coffee (one of the few meals a week that we all get to sit down and eat together). I made Trader Joes Banana Bread which I add chocolate chips and/or walnuts to – easy and delicious! And we made lattes with our favorite #treatyoself purchase – our Nespresso CitiZ & Milk Espresso Machine.

As soon as Margot was down for her nap, we got outside and worked as hard as we could for the two baby-free hours we had. Brian was a champ pulling weeds and mulching the plant beds while I refreshed our flower pots. We got our planters last year at Target, I linked some similar ones here and here. It’s always such a good feeling when the yard is green and the patio furniture is out!

Since it was so nice out that afternoon, we decided we had to stay outside. We went for a long family walk to…yep, you guessed it – the liquor store. Brian’s a bit of a cocktail connoisseur and wanted to get the perfect bourbon to make mint juleps for all 2 minutes of the Kentucky Derby (he chose Traverse City Whiskey Company’s Cherry Edition for a little Michigan twist!) On our way back, we stopped into the gas station and got $0.79 Slurpees – steal!! An extremely productive trip if I do say so.

While Brian concocted the perfect mint julep, I made one of our favorite and very complicated dinners – grilled cheese and tomato soup! I served it with sweet potato fries and a simple arugula salad and called it dinner! We proceeded to sip our ‘Michigan Juleps’ while we watched (cue Chris Harrison voice) “the most dramatic derby yet”.

After a busy Saturday, we all slept in (until 8…woo!) on Sunday morning. We ate our avocado toast (recipe inspired by my sister cousins which includes my new Trader Joes addiction – Everything But the Bagel seasoning), Brian went to finish the rest of the yard work and I got the “lets rearrange the whole house” bug. That was slightly aggressive, so instead we just tackled our living room. Most of our furniture is hand-me-down pieces from our parents and grandparents including an acrylic & wood table and speaker cabinet handmade by Brian’s Papa Reu and paintings by my Grandpa John. We’ve been trying to figure out a way incorporate all of these pieces with our more modern furniture like my favorite tufted bench (similar benches linked here, here and here), and I’m very pleased with the outcome!

After a productive weekend, we had our own Cinco de Mayo fiesta on our patio enjoying tacos with ingredients from our local farmers market, and my dad’s famous Margot-ritas (ingredient list below), while we rocked out to our new favorite song.

Happy Spring from A2!

Matthew’s Famous Margot-ritas

  • 2 ounces tequila made from 100 percent agave, preferably reposado or blanco
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • 1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 ounce orange juice
  • Salt and lime wedge for garnish

Farmers Market Tacos

  • Trader Joes pre-seasoned Pollo Asada
  • Trader Joes Queso dip
  • Flour or Corn Tortillas
  • Butter Lettuce
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Red Onion
  • Daikon Radish
  • Mini-Peppers
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Shredded Mexican blend cheese