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Books, Christmas, Gift Giving, Holidays, Parenting, Shopping, TalesOfAPeanut, Uncategorized

11 Children’s Gifts For Your Kiddos

Holiday Gift Guides - Tales of a Peanut 2015

Today’s edition of our gift guides is all about the kids. Whether they’re infants or older, there’s a little something for everyone here. And if you missed yesterdays, you can always check it out in the Gift Guides category.

11 Childrens Gifts For Your Trendy Kiddos - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

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BeMoShe - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

I Am Your Wild tee – BeMoShe – $24

This gray shirt will quickly become a go-to favorite for your children ages 2-6. Screen printed by hand on comfy American Apparel tee’s, each shirt will vary slightly making them more special. And reminding your child that it’s ok to be a little wild is probably a good reminder in this day. Whether you’re encouraging your child to get outdoors and explore or reassuring them that you don’t expect them to sit still all day every day, this shirt will be pulled from the laundry basket as soon as it’s clean each and every laundry day.

Perfectly Crafted by T - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

Blue and Gray Argyle Bowtie – Perfectly Crafted By T – $8

This shop has lots of cute designs that can be made into either a bowtie or a bow. I love how easy it would be to get all of your kids matching with this shop! I’m a sucker for argyle and blue and gray is one of my favorite combo’s so choosing this design was a no brainer for me.

Toluka Paper - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

MASH Pad – Toluka Paper – $15.50

When I was in middle school we spent a lot of paper writing out MASH games. I can’t even image how many we would have gone through if we had a notepad ready to fill in! The designs from Toluka Paper are old-school and I love the bright colors and retro feel. (Although I don’t love so much that my time growing up now feels like a retro time period.) This 8×8″ notepad would be a great stocking stuffer for a pre-teen and would help you show them what we did before screens were everywhere.

Ally B Designs - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

Shine Bright Like The Stars Hooded Tee – Ally B Designs – $25

For the trendy kiddo, this hooded tee would be the perfect gift. It would work for boys or girls without sacrificing style for either one. And I love that it has a hoodie that you can pull up over their sweet heads if you get outside without remembering how blustery the winter wind can be. And as a bonus, $2 of every purchase is donated to a children’s charity and for November and December that charity is Make A Wish!

Jesus Loves Ice #TOAPGiftGuide

Jesus Loves Print – Tales of a Peanut – $12+

Not only do I like to surround my house with beautiful prints to remind me of Biblical truths but I like to include them in my children’s rooms as well. That’s why I love this print so much. It personalizes a very popular children’s story to remind them how personal Jesus’ love is for them. And it can be customized to match any decor which makes it pretty much perfect.

Strawberry Mommycakes - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

Grunge Fairy Tale Shirts – Strawberry Mommycakes – $22.50

If your kids are a little old for the Shine Bright tee then these Grunge Fairy Tale Shirts might be the perfect fit. With designs that are a little rough around the edges, these shirts will make your child smile. And in sizes 2-12 and on super soft American Apparel shirts, these will be come their favorites in no time. PS Erin also has onesies in this line as well if your kiddo isn’t quite to the t-shirt stage.
miniPeanuts Plate Flutter #TOAPGiftGuide

Flutter Plate – miniPeanuts – $25

My kids love these durable plates and we celebrate special occasions with one designed just for them. As they set the table each night they love hearing the story behind each plate. This Flutter design is one of my favorites due to its vibrant colors and gorgeous watercolor patterns. And since these plates are dishwasher, microwave, and even oven safe and are non-toxic they are the perfect plate to let kids eat off of.

Pink Peppermint Paper - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

Preppy Paddle Out – Pink Peppermint Paper – $1.99

It might be early to be thinking of summer camps, but these postcards would make great stocking stuffers for your older kids. Especially if you’re gifting them with a trip to camp this summer for Christmas! The postcards limit the space your child will be required to write (which they’ll appreciate) and you’ll appreciate receiving mail while they’re away.

Lysa TerKeurst - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

Win or Lose I Love You – Lysa TerKeurst – $9.20

Lysa TerKeurst is a very popular writer in the women’s market but many might not know that she also writes fantastic children’s books. And her latest one, Win or Lose I Love You, will be perfect for my kids this Christmas. It’s message on how to handle winning and losing as well as reassurance that your love isn’t changed by the outcome will be a relief for kids to stick away in their minds for the future. Lisa’s books are beautifully illustrated and I love that they help bring about conversations with your kids in an organic way that doesn’t feel forced and that they can relate to.

Tales of a Peanut Placemat Robots #TOAPGiftGuide

Robots Placemat – miniPeanuts – $17

Laminated placemats have become my saving grace for the kitchen table. It’s infinitely easier to scrape dried milk or pasta sauce off of a placemat in the sink than it is to scrape it from the grooves of the table. Not that I would know anything about that, of course. With a large size (12×18″), a thick lamination (10 mil), the ability to personalize the designs, AND the choice of two different designs for the front and back, you’ll be glad that you got these for your kids.

Lionheart Prints - #TOAPGiftGuide 2015

The Snuggle Is Real – Lionheart Prints – $22

Many of you probably know Lionheart Prints for their irreverent prints and Yeaux Leaux collection, but Liz also has this adorable onesie that will encourage you to treasure those baby snuggles while you can. And with a screen printed onesie on a soft Rabbit Skins’ blue onesie this would be perfect for baby’s of any gender or a fun Christmas gift for the newly expectant Mama.

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There you have it. My favorite gifts for the kiddos in your life. I think that any of these items would make an excellent gift for kids of all ages. Think I missed something? See something you love? I’d love to know about! Let me know in the comments or join in the conversation on Instagram! And you can support all of these makers by buying in their shops or by sharing this post and their products on social media. Please use the buttons below to share on any (or all!) of your favorite social media channels!

Books, Personal, Uncategorized

Friday Peanuts

Friday Peanuts


Another Friday, another attempt at becoming consistent with the Friday Peanuts posts.  🙂

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1. Mother Two Daughters Necklace Set

A few weeks ago I posted about this Mother/Daughter necklace but lamented the fact that I’m about to have two girls.  A friend of mine messaged me a week or so after that and told me that there’s a two daughter version as well!

2. Kids Chapter Book Suggestions

With the coming arrival of Hadley, I’d like to start doing something that just Charlotte and I can do to make her feel a little special and recognize her age.  I’m thinking that starting to read longer books together, just the two of us, might do the trick.  I’ve pinned a number of related posts about this on Pinterest and now need to find a stellar one to start our series off.  Any suggestions for a basically 5 year old little girl who loves animals, dance, princesses, and has a very sensitive heart and doesn’t like to see people be mean or get hurt??

Over 50 Chapter Books for Preschoolers

Read Aloud Chapter Books for 4-6 Years Olds

First Grade Read Aloud Books

10 Books to read with your 4-7 year old

Best Early Chapter Books for Kids about Animals

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3. McCoy Pottery

In looking for a Christmas gift for my mother-in-law’s Mom I remembered that she collects McCoy pottery.  While searching Etsy for it I feel in love with the antique look and vibrant colors.  Jason got me a set of strawberry canisters for Christmas and now I’m dying to add more pieces to my collection.  They would be the perfect thing to put in my upper cabinets in the kitchen!

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4.The Smart Girl’s Guide to God, Guys, and the Galaxy

I recently read this book as part of my book review site that I joined and I’m so glad that I did.  I wanted to read it even though it’s aimed at teen girls because I figured I should get a head start on those teenage years since I’m looking at two girls with teenage years.  I’m so glad that I took the time to read it, not only so that I’m prepared, but so that I can apply a lot of what I learned in my life and in my daughter’s lives now!

The book is a series of 100 short chapters that cover everything from reading your Bible, gossip, relationships, anger, fashion and much  more.  Each chapter is written in an easy to identify with tone and doesn’t talk down to girls in the least (something I found quite often in books as I was growing up).  I have been a fan of Susie Shellenberger since I read Brio while growing up.  Susie (and her co-author, Kristin Weber) are able to communicate with teens in a way that most other adults can’t.

While I think that this would be a great book for teenage girls, I also don’t mind recommending it to Mom’s with kids of all ages or women in general.  I ended up highlighting lots of the book!  Here are some of my favorite quotes that helped remind me of the big picture:

“[There are people that] seem to be people magnets — others are just drawn to them.  It’s because they’ve learned an important secret: Be nice to everyone!”

“Simply doing what God made you to do glorifies Him.”

“Your reputation will always align with your character.  Your character is who you are — what defines you.  And your reputation is everyone’s knowledge of your character.”

“Knowing apologetics will not only make you a more effective witness, it will strengthen your own faith as you learn more than ever that Christianity is the Ultimate Truth.”

“Unforgiveness shows lack of trust in God.  It reveals that we don’t think God can or will take care of the situation fairly.”

The Smart Girls Guide is a quick read that will help you realign yourself with those things that you were taught in high school but maybe disregarded.  Things that will help you become a better person and a better Christ follower.  There are, of course, sections of the book that are easy to skim as an adult, but would be very well suited for a teen who is reading the book!

Publication date: April 1, 2014
Genre: Christian Non-Fiction, Teen
Setting: Present Day
Rating: A

5. Memory Quilts

I have a big plastic container full of special articles of clothing for both kids that I would really like to get made into a quilt for them.  While I hate to pay someone to do it since I’ve made a similar quilt before and know I could do it, I also know that my time is super limited and if I want to get these done before Hadley turns 5 I might should contract this out.  Anyone who knows someone who does quilts like these, please let me know! I’d rather use someone semi-local so that there’s no risk of everything getting lost in the shipping process.

6. Family Vision

Do you have a family vision?  After reading this post I’m thinking that Jason and I should sit down and create one.  Maybe we’ll find time in the hospital…. 🙂

Recipes, Uncategorized

Recipe Wednesday – Cheese Tortellini and Sausage and Garlic Cauliflower Rice

Cheese Tortellini and Sausage

I was apparently feeling ambitious this night because I made not one but two new recipes.  Believe me when I say that this rarely happens!  But I’m so glad that I made these two.  They are fantastic and are really good together!

I made this Crockpot Cheese Tortellini and Sausage recipe on the stove instead of in a crockpot.  A few differences was that I used cut up sausage links instead of any type of breakfast sausage so I just threw the cut up pieces into the mix instead of having to brown anything.  I also only used made 1/4 of the bag of spinach and cut it into pieces.  I basically just threw everything into a big pot on the stove and cooked it until the pasta was tender (about 15-20 minutes I think).  This did require me to kind of stand over it and make sure that it didn’t boil too hot and stir occasionally so that nothing stuck to the bottom.  But this is a fantastic recipe and we had enough for all four of us to eat some and for me to get a couple lunches during the week out of it.

I also made the Cauliflower Garlic Rice to go with the pasta.  I’ve been wanting to get more veggies into the kids and thought that this might be a good way to do it.  It turned out that they were fascinated with the cutting up of the head of cauliflower and both decided they liked raw cauliflower while we were cutting it up so that was a nice surprise!  This recipe is a little intensive and dirties up a lot of dishes but it was really good and I felt great about serving it to my family!

Travel, Uncategorized

Disney with Toddlers – Planning the Trip

Disney With Toddlers

Let’s talk a little bit today about how we planned our trip.  I had started a Pinterest board for our trip long before we got to actually planning it and it was helpful with lots of tips and advice.  But I still found myself very overwhelmed when I would try and compare hotels and locations and everything else on the Disney site.  So it was with great relief that my aunt told me about Missy Logan at Mickey Adventures who helped them plan their trip.

I contacted Missy and gave her the basics for our trip — when we wanted to go, what we were looking for, etc — and she quickly started moving on our trip after that.  She gave us various hotel options and explained differences in a way that only someone familiar with the property’s can.  We contacted Missy at the beginning of April to start planning our trip but didn’t make the hotel reservations until almost mid-May.  (To put this into month perspective, we got in touch with her 8 months before our trip and booked it 7 months before our trip.)  She helped us settle on the Animal Kingdom Jambo House which we are so thankful for.  More to come on the hotel later, but it was a great decision!

Once we booked our reservation, Missy was on top of everything else for us.  You need to book dining reservations 180 days out (six months) so on June 1 she emailed me requesting our dining preferences.  I would recommend that you look at and make these decisions BEFORE that 180 day period because I’m guessing that our delay in a few days of deciding is what caused us to have some later lunch and dinner times than we would have preferred.  Make sure and specify what times you would like to eat as well as where just to give them more help!

Missy also was sending us information on Disney all the time between when we booked our trip and when we left.  She sent tip sheets and information about services.  She even sent us a recommended schedule of what days to do what parks based on the estimated attendance each day.  She also continuously checked for specials and deals that Disney was introducing that might could reduce our package price!

I know that you can do the planning yourself, but I don’t really see why you would when there are agents like Missy out there who can get you all the insider deals and information.  And you don’t pay Missy or Mickey Adventures anything for their services!  It’s amazing!  I won’t plan a Disney trip without using Missy’s help because all of the behind the scenes knowledge and help that she provided was invaluable!

Note: I was in no way compensated or even asked to write this post.  Missy provides this kind of service to everyone and all opinions and views are my own.  Please see my link/review disclosures for more information.

Faith, Personal, Uncategorized

Thankful – My God


More than anything else, I am thankful for God.  His love is never-ending and I know that I could never do anything to earn God’s love for me.  It is extravagant, undeserved, full of grace and love and mercy, and so much more.

I am thankful for the freedom to worship and speak about God that we enjoy in this country.  When Charlotte came home last week after their Thanksgiving day she had puppets and could tell me the whole First Thanksgiving story with them.  And she started with two Puritans and said that they left England because “they couldn’t worship God the way they wanted.”  I am thankful for the rich heritage and tradition of our founding fathers and their confidence that we would be able to worship differently in this country and still live together.

Thank you Lord for all that you have blessed my family and myself with.  We love you so much and pray that we reflect your grace and mercy and love every day of our lives.


Charlotte, Family, Uncategorized


Since I admitted yesterday that we are basically fully decorated for Christmas, lets skip back and review Halloween.

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This was the first year that Charlotte was truly excited about it and, wouldn’t you know it, it ended up raining most of the night.  The rain didn’t stop her from enjoying her time trick or treating though and she had such full dressing up as Ariel.  The surprise Ariel necklace and earrings that I gave her right before we left the house didn’t hurt either!

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James, on the other hand, was not impressed with the holiday. Well, in general he seemed to like Halloween and even said “Thank you” when people gave him candy, but he wouldn’t get within ten inches of getting his big toe in his puppy costume that he had picked out.  So, he went as a “baseball player” and all was good.  That is, until we only let him eat one piece of candy that night and then there was a tantrum.  But, he is only two after all!


They did enjoy “carving” the pumpkin the night before Halloween though.  Even if I was the only one willing to dig the guts out.  Both kids just said “Ewwwww!” It still turned out cute!