I can’t believe summer is almost over and fall is right around the corner. This time of year is always bitter sweet, because the weather and long days will soon be taking a shift, but we also look forward to the different activities each season has to offer! This September is even more memorable for us, because my little Nate is finally starting kindergarten! My wife and son are super excited, but I’m not feeling as enthusiastic about it. Knowing that Nate is growing up and starting this new chapter in his life is a reminder that he won’t always be my little boy. With that said, now that he’s heading into the first school year, that means it’s BACK-2-SCHOOL SHOPPING TIME! (and not just for Nate, but for myself too LOL) Let’s be real, I can’t go shopping and not get some new pieces for myself as well! This fall season we teamed up with Old Navy to #SayHi and show you our back to school looks. Prior to being a dad, I’ve always hated when fathers and their sons wore matching plaid shirts, and I always told myself I would not be that cheesy dad. However, fast forward to me now, and I absolutely love any chance I can get to match with Nate. Although, I just try and do it in a more subtle way – maybe we’re less matchy matchy and more about coordinating. I love color-blocking and wearing monochrome looks, so I picked these Olive Pants, with the built-in Old Navy Flex Twill, which makes it easy and comfortable to get that fitted jean look without sacrificing comfort. I paired them with a different tone of olive and went with the Old Navy Lightweight Hooded Anorak Jacket. This jacket is the perfect fall staple! I wanted to go in a different direction than I normally would and add in some color, so I broke up the shades of green with the Old Navy Garment-Dyed Fleece Sweatshirt in their Brick Yard color. The dye process gave the sweatshirt a subtle, cool vintage look. Nate is usually drawn to fun, bold prints, so he picked out the Old Navy Sneaker-Printed Fleece Sweatshirt on his own. He thought it was super comfy and loved the little sneakers. He has a fun pair of grey Old Navy slip-ons from last season, that went perfectly with this grey sweatshirt…he takes after his daddy and loves slip-on sneakers! We used the color red to coordinate our outfits, so Nate wore the red Old Navy Hooded Uniform Jacket, which looks similar to mine (and like me, he always loves when we have similar pieces). Nate lives in joggers and rarely wears jeans, but didn’t mind wearing these Old Navy Distressed Karate Skinny Jeans because of their stretchy fit. I don’t know if it’s because I rarely see him in jeans, but I just thought he looked more like a little big-boy than ever – all ready for school! And I love how his little chicken legs look in them LOL. Can’t wait to see this little school boy head off to his first day of big-boy school! 🙁
Usually a perfect Friday night for my family and I is a little date night. Nothing too fancy but something that has a little something for everyone…a trip to our local Marshalls. On the surface it might not sound that exciting, but it’s a night that has everything we need after a long work week. We’re able to spend some time together doing something we all love…SHOP! We’re lucky enough to have our favorite pizza place, Home Depot (we’re homeowners, we live here), and liquor store (for after Nate’s asleep) all in the same shopping complex. We usually start our night by getting some pizza and filling our bellies so we don’t have to rush shopping and Nathan’s not cranky. We then head over to Marshalls to do some shopping! It’s a great store to bring our son Nate to because it not only has clothes for him, but we can also bribe him with a toy if he behaves and let’s us shop LOL. Depending on how good he is during the week also determines the size of the toy. Usually we just get him a little toy truck, book or puzzle (we shop at Marshalls way too much to be getting a full-sized jeep every time we go). Sometimes we’ll even grab a little snack from the checkout or home goods area to snack on while we’re walking around. We actually grabbed a bag of Jalapeno chips ($2.99) to take to the park with us, but unfortunately we were too hungry and the chips were too good and never made it to the park to be in our shots. Before we head to the fitting rooms, we always hit up the home goods section – a good portion of our house decor and kitchen utensils are from both Marshalls & Home Goods. We love the hopes of finding that one unique piece! The outfit I picked up had a great variety of brands…which is another thing I love about Marshalls. What other store can you have access to all these top brands at such affordable prices?! I’ve been trying to grow my hat collection but with such a small head I have a hard time finding a hat that fits just right. This plaid ‘Life is Good’ hat ($9.99) is a perfect fall pick up and goes great with the preppy look I was going for. The green in it was really brought out in combination with this Vineyard Vines vest ($59.99). Fall is a good time to break out the vests and a great way to add some color or texture to your outfit. I kept the shirt simple with a classic white button down from Jack Spade ($24.99)…which happens to be one of my favorite menswear brands. I also got a great pair of New Balance sneakers ($39.99) which I wore with no socks. I know some people aren’t a fan of going sockless but it’s comfortable for me and I do it all the time, and most importantly I like the way it looks with most of my outfits. However, you can easily go to the Marshalls sock section and pick up a pair of no-shows to get the same look. While I was shopping in the shoe section I also found and bought Nate the cutest all black Onitsuka Tiger sneakers ($19.99). I own two pairs of sneakers from the brand already and love their retro style. Of course he looked adorable in them! We took our Marshalls finds to one of our local parks to play, explore and shoot. Unfortunately one of our favorite little streams was a little dry, but it didn’t stop us from exploring (Nate loves exploring and hiking). We still got to throw some rocks…just with a lot less splash. Heading over to the playground, Nate was a little too excited and wasn’t watching where he was walking and tripped and fell. Poor little guy got a boo boo on his knee but was excited he didn’t mess up his new sneakers LOL That’s my boy! My family and I pretty much have the same routine at least 2 Friday’s out of the month LOL What can I say…we love pizza and love our Marshalls, in hopes of finding that perfect hidden piece! We also love the fact that you can hit up another Marshalls location and find completely different pieces. Boy do we get excited when we’re away for the weekend and drive past a new Marshalls to scavenger LOL We love the shopping rush of finding that perfect #MarshallsSurprise! Check out my post on the Marshalls site as well!
Been wanting to take a trip up to the Tuthilltown Spirits Distillery for awhile now, so I finally made the trip up to Gardiner, NY with my family and my cuz. I wanted to take the tour and check out how they make and distill their Hudson Whiskey and other alcohols. The tour starts with you checking in at the beautiful store where they sell their merchandise…from whiskey to coasters. The store has a very rustic feel and is decorated nicely with the perfect ambiance for the distillery. After checking in, you go outside on the deck with your group and tour guide (our guide was Lyon) where he gives you the history of the company, starting out with how the owner’s idea went from “Bunks in the Gunks” to the first distillery in NY since the prohibition. To kick off the tour of the grounds you start in a barn at these massive metal canisters where the mash ferments. You then move on to the room that houses the big copper distills. It’s pretty cool that they’re still using the very first distill that the founder, Ralph Erenzo, started his business using. We continued the tour into the bottling room where there is a little assembly line for filling, corking and labeling. We were lucky enough to be one of the last tours to be shown this original room, but due to their growth, they’re soon moving to a larger building to up production. We finished the tour with the best part – the tasting. Unfortunately, by law, you can only try 3 different alcohols out of their selection, which included different whiskeys, a vodka, a gin, and a few other selections. I tried the Corn Whiskey, Baby Bourbon, and the Maple Rye Whiskey. I ended up bringing home a bottle of Baby Bourbon and Corn Whiskey to enjoy at home! I would’ve cleaned house and probably bought damn near a bottle of everything if I didn’t have the wifey with me. *Side note to all the men out there…I love doing things with my wife but on trips like this maybe keep them at home so you can actually clean house lol (just kidding, you need a designated driver lol) I didn’t even know they made anything else besides whiskey, but I am def glad I know now. Besides loving their bourbons I am now a huge fan of their gins and vodka! Though I have never actually used them myself I also like their bitters and plan on adding them to my next purchase. I have only recently discovered my love for whiskey, so I have not ventured on to making drinks – been just drinking them straight up to get a nose and taste for them. If you take the trip up here, I highly recommend you stop by their restaurant, The Gristmill, after your tour. I truly cannot wait to go back…as a matter of fact, I already have a date with my cousin to do so. Their menu ranges from chicken wings and burgers to steaks, ducks, lasagna, and rack of lamb. They all have their own little twist to make them different from the norm. The bartender, totally drawing a blank on his name, was very personable and one of the best cocktail craftsmen (which he called himself lol) I have come across. He definitely earned the title! He made the best tasting cocktails by far and also some of the wildest. I told him I wanted to try a couple of different types of drinks. He started me off with a drink that had garlic in it, which was surprisingly good! After that I tried a drink with tequila and cilantro…which might be the best drink I’ve ever tried. He was doing everything from putting actual smoke in drinks for flavor and had a ton of his own bitters on the bar to use. When we visited, we sat at the bar with a good friend of mine, Gable, who works at the distillery as a distiller and brand ambassador and is also the son of one of the owners, Ralph Erenzo. He walked us around the restaurant, which has an amazing history and a lot of cool, vintage features. He took us downstairs and showed us some of the original parts of the mill. He also brought us out back and showed us the working dam that’s also part of the restaurant. Nathan enjoyed asking him a bunch of questions lol Now I could’ve went on about more of the history and tastes but I don’t want to give everything away and want to make sure you get the same great experience I did on my first visit!