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.

Weekend Recap from WDM!

By: Emily Heaston

Whew! This month is crazy!! Our weekend was packed full of end of the year activities for our kids and family celebrations for a special graduate!

The fun started on Thursday night with a family dinner at Fire Creek. Then Nicole and Aunt Julie got to town on Friday. They brought lots of our favorite treats from Trader Joe’s!

I woke up early on Saturday to shop the vineyard vines® for Target collaboration! I shopped a little online and saw that most of the apparel was only available in store, so I ran to Super Target and snagged some cute summer outfits for the kids! I’ll share my online purchases soon!

Then we drove to Ames for Clare & Cate’s dance recitals! So proud of my girls for working hard all year!

Every year on recital day, we get lunch at Hickory Park!

Saturday night, we had fun with family at my mom’s. Clare, Cate, Teddy, Lily & Maeve were so happy to be together. Our family had all been in Grinnell for the day for two special statue dedications in Mollie’s memory.

Sunday brought Scott’s high school graduation! We’re so proud of him–Salutatorian, football captain and quarterback, Homecoming king, and a leader wherever he goes. Congratulations, Scott! We love you!

After Scott’s graduation, we all went for lunch in Grinnell. We were having trouble finding the restaurant and couldn’t get it to pull up on the map app either. Julie visited the restaurant’s website to get the address and I plugged that in manually to get directions on my phone…well it didn’t take us to the restaurant, but instead it said, “You have arrived at your destination…” at the location of one of Mollie’s statues. I really can’t do it justice how surprised we all were as we pulled up. We all had goosebumps! She must have known I was sad to miss the dedication the day before during the dance recital. So happy I got to see it with my family. Mollie has so many ways of letting us know she is with us!

Today marks the last Monday of the school year for my kids! I spent the day trying to get my house in some state of order after our many trips to Ames for rehearsals and recitals last week! Clare’s Daisy troop bridged to Brownies this evening, and I think we just have a few softball games left before we can enjoy a little break for the start of summer!

So proud of Troop 1190! This was a great excuse to enjoy some treats baked by my girlfriend Christine!

This weekend was a marathon! I might just go to bed with the kids tonight!

The cutest cake for the cutest girls!