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"kid friendly"

Here I didn’t know @arcreid was behind the lens. I kinda love the real life un-posed glimpses. 

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LACMA  Greenery, great art, sculpture and if your kids aren’t into 18th century Nöel Hallé oil on canvas, square sculptures that are the perfect backdrop for Christmas pictures. Gorgeous. Located: 5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, 

WINSOME Awesome food in a very laid-back, kid-friendly environment. The friendly receptionist handed each of my four kids a pipe cleaner (in their favorite color) and then took us to the outdoor seating. I enjoyed my duck egg toast amidst lovely olive bushes and indigo pillows, and nobody cared about my chattering kiddos. Between the fact that my kids cleaned their plates, the brilliant and hard-working pipe cleaners, and the ambiance, Winsome is a score in my book. Don’t pass this one up. Located: 1115 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles.

DINOSAUR COFFEE  The indoor/outdoor seating was convenient, and the staff was friendly despite our 6 year old touching the sea salt brownies (which turned into a great reason to add it to our purchases). Also noted, great white space for that still life instagram in case you’re into that sort of thing. The almond milk latte was nutty and rich, and when we left, we could see the HOLLYWOOD sign on the horizon. So LA. Located: 4334 W Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles.

LACY PARK 30 acres of park that is bike, kid and dog friendly. We can’t get enough of this park. It’s free during the week, and its $4 for non- residents on the weekends. It’s our kids’ favorite so far. Located: 1485 W. Virginia Rd, San Marino.

MANHATTAN BEACH This is our favorite beach! Don’t forget the aquarium at the end of the pier with sea creatures and a touch pool. When you’ve had your beach fill, there’s plenty of restaurants, ice cream shops (coffee ice cream at Manhattan Beach Creamery!) and coffee hangs to walk to afterwards. Located: 400-500 The Strand, Manhattan Beach.

 

Cali locals, what are some of your favorites? I’m all ears . . .

It’s 4 days till Friday, it’s time to get prepared.

Family night can get complicated beyond what to flavor the popcorn with. Can you relate? I asked you — my readers what are your favorite family friendly films and BOOM, I got great responses. Obviously, use parental caution and common sense as you know what your kids can handle in terms of movies and adults themes like funerals and death like we saw last night when we watched Fried Green Tomatoes. Reid and I have enjoyed making family night special with popcorn and nacho seasoning. I included the recipe below.

Add any of your favorites in the comments.

ET

Sound of Music

Mary Poppins

Newsies

Soul Surfer

Forever my girl – my kids say “this is mommy’s favorite movie.” Very sweet.

Cheaper by the Dozen

Sandlot

Because of Winn-Dixie

Snow Dogs

The Railway Children

Annie

Swiss family Robinson

Fried Green Tomatoes

Sky Captain and World of Tomorrow

BONUS:

A HUNDRED FOOT JOURNEY – whole family loved this one!

WHALE RIDER

BLUE MIRACLE

THE GREATEST SHOWMAN

For family night:

This Nacho Cheese Seasoning is perfect for popcorn, chips, and french fries! Or anything you want to sprinkle it on. It’s also vegan because I used nutritional yeast to give it a cheesy flavor.

NACHO CHEESE SEASONING INGREDIENTS

½ tablespoon nutritional yeast

1 ½ teaspoon of chili pepper powder (use more if you like it extra spicy)

1 teaspoon of onion powder

½ teaspoon of cumin powder 

½ teaspoon of sea salt

½ teaspoon of smoked paprika

Mix together, add on top of popcorn and drizzle with avocado oil.

Enjoy!

I told him to say “cheese” and he said, I can’t have cheese. Truth. He’s lactose intollerant, ha!

Our weekend BBQ was rained out, but the food was almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

Just before it rained!

Sleeping beauties . . .
My kids are reeeeeally hard on their clothes. It’s rare for me not to find stains and holes in their leggings and jeans (that I may or may not have created myself, ha!) Nevertheless, I am always on the lookout for quality and great design on a budget, so I was pleased to find both at Garnet Hill. Their passion for quality, outstanding customer service, and great sales began with one couple in 1976, and continues today. You can read more here. As expected, the girls dresses got dirty this weekend at the boathouse, but I’m not too worried. Thanks to machine washable and durable blends, they’re ready for the next adventure which we hope will be Maggie Daley Park. But, let’s face it, as parents, you can only plan because you never know what’s going to happen, good or regretful.  Check out our favorite kid friendly destinations in Chicago below, leave your favorites in a comment, and the dresses and sandals shown here are currently on sale (up to 50% off) till July 15, 2015, score!

Top 5 Kid Friendly Activities / CHICAGO 
1. Maggie Daley Park is an outdoor park on steroids with an amazing city view
2. Garfield Park Conservatory is lush year round with koi fish, palm trees and it’s free!
3. Heritage Bicycles for great coffee and little cycles 
4. Explore the coal mine at the Museum of Science & Industry
5. Lincoln Park Zoo and Farm go see the giraffes and pigs!

Thank you Garnet Hill for sponsoring this post!
See more of their Red, White & Blue collection here

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We absolutely LOVE going to Florida and have been coming to the Magnolia neighborhood near Destin FL for 13 years! It was our dream to own a beach house there. In December, we made that dream a reality. We bought, furnished and recently started renting our beach house out. More on how to rent it here. Many of you asked where we like to eat in the Santa Rosa Beach, 30A area so I compiled 10 favorites, also kid approved! Let me know in the comments if you have any favorites that I missed.

See our first trip to Alys Beach that I blogged about HERE. Brooks was a baby — 7 years ago!

I welcome any questions here: shalice@shalicenoel.com. As always thanks for stopping by! 😉

THE BAY 24215 HWY 331 South, Santa Rosa Beach, kid friendly menu, 10/10 views of the Bay, and happy hour half price drinks. Hello half priced margarita!

GEORGES 30 Castle Harbor Dr, Panama City Beach, an aesthetically pleasing date night spot in Alys Beach

SUGAR SHACK 5 Main Street, Unite 2A Rosemary Beach, FL. A good place for candy and ice cream. My kids love this little Rosemary Beach hot spot!

BLUE MOUNTAIN BAKERY 2217 W county HWY 30A Unite E, Santa Rosa Beach, FL. We decided this is our favorite place to get cinnamon rolls. Hands down. Tip: Go early.

BLACK BEAR BREAD CO 26 Logan Lane, Santa Rosa Beach, for coffee and treats in Grayton Beach

BAD ASS COFFEE 17 Uptown Grayton Cir, Santa Rosa Beach, yummy lattes!

ANGELINA’S PIZZA 4005 E County Highway 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, Our kids FAVORITE. It’s a great place to feed a crowd and yummy homemade salad dressings.

BLUE MABEL 2260 West Scenic Highway 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, Reid and I came here for date night. We got happy hour margaritas and enjoyed their famous brisket!

DONUT HOLE 6745 US Highway 98 W, Santa Rosa Beach, get here early, good for their namesake donuts and omelets!

30A BURGER 12805 US-98 W, Panama City Beach, we came here after a 6-hour drive. The burgers were delicious!

Kith & Kin 7525 W County Hwy 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, W ordered nutella treats and iced lattes and it was delicious. Feels like Kauai with corn hole games outside.

Grayton State Park, 357 Main Park Road, Santa Rosa Beach. $5 entry and SO WORTH IT. Smaller crowds and beautiful beaches.

What to do on a rainy day with kids in Destin:

FUDPUCKERS Come for the burgers, stay for the alligator feeding. A good rainy day activity! 20001 Emerald Coast Pkwy, Destin, FL 32541,

Gulf World Marine Park experience the marine-themed bowling alley and marine life for a perfect rainy day activity!

Urban Air Trampoline Park Have the kids run and jump to their hearts content.

Rock out Climbing Gym state of the art indoor rock climbing facility. Burn off breakfast from the Donut Hole.

Rainforest Black Light Mini-Golf & Arcade glow in the dark mini golf course and fun filled arcades.

Do you have any Destin or 30A favorites to share? I’d love to hear. shalice@shalicenoel.com. Thanks for reading!

swim tunic cover up // denim short one teaspoon // sunglasses // blue dress Misa Los Angeles similar  // kimono and similar cute one // one-shoulder red dress // stripe flip flops

Reid was off 6 weeks for paternity leave and the doctors recommended traveling with a newborn after 5 weeks, so we jumped right through that 5-week window and decided to take a trip to Kauai. I know, crazy sounding, but it actually worked out great. Flying with a newborn is much easier than traveling with a 1-year-old. Levi pretty much nursed and slept the entire flight. 

 

Why Kauai?

We chose Kauai because Reid and I went there for our honeymoon and the island is familiar to us. We felt we didn’t need the added stress of flying somewhere totally new. We’ll do that when he’s a little older.  Also, the Lihue airport is chill and not big-city crowded. It’s the Garden Isle after all. For LA urban dwellers like ourselves who battle sirens, smog and traffic, the country is a breath of fresh air. Literally. I’ll substitute sirens for rooster crowing any day. Yes, wild chickens roam the island of Kauai!

Kauai Family Trip Roundup

Here’s a list of our faves to help you plan your next trip:

Where we stayed

Suite Paradise. We stayed in a condo which had a kitchen and plenty of room for the 7 of us. We had a garden view and can’t complain because the price was right. Suite Paradise has a variety of units available at various price ranges. All reservations include a resort fee with access to the Poipu Athletic Club. The kids loved the pool with slide and Reid loved the gym. They also have tennis and basketball courts for the real athletes.

Favorite Beaches

Our favorite beach was Polihale Beach. It’s totally remote but not kid friendly. So our favorite kid-friendly beaches are:

Beach at Sheraton – Kiahuna Beach

Best for a quick family swim, boogie boarding and lots of surf lessons going on if you want to give it a shot.

Baby Beach or Poipu Beach

Great snorkeling, but you will need water shoes because of the rocky bottom. We saw incredible fish, eels, sea turtles and sea lions. There is also an island you can swim to.

Best Coffee

This is a big deal because everywhere we go we look for GOOD COFFEE. This is hard to master because good coffee is really hard to find IMO.

Little Fish Coffee. Reid rated that a 5 since it tasted a little burnt for the drip version. Maybe the custom pour over would have been better, but Reid didn’t give them a second chance. The place was packed for breakfast with outdoor seating and a total surfer vibe.

Living Foods Market had the best coffee. I ordered the almond milk latte and he ordered one large regular coffee. No burnt taste and we’re going back next time.

Eden Coffee is a cute little food truck with smoothies and coffee. We got to know the owner and he has a family very similar to ours so we immediately bonded and instantly followed them on Instagram because I feel like we are old family friends now.

Best Nature Seeing

Spouting Horn

It’s a quick little stop off from the main highway along the coast. It’s a cave that spouts water up to 30 feet in the air as the waves come in. It was pretty impressive and fun to watch. The kids really dug it and loved hearing the funny sound it makes.

Waimea Canyon 

The drive to Waimea Canyon was amazing as you go from sea level up to 3,000 feet above. There is a lookout point to view the canyon which is considered The Grand Canyon of the Islands. You can see a waterfall in the distance. We suggest picking up food in the city of Waimea and having a picnic in the Waimea National Park. We also grabbed shaved ice at Jo Jos on the way back. A local favorite.

Best Shaved Ice

Shave Ice TegeTege

Shaved ice is a known dessert for Kauai. We suggest Shave Ice Tege Tege, in Kappa. A local friend Reid made in the Poipu Gym recommended it. For those who hate food coloring, this food truck offers the only 100% organic Japanese-style shaved ice. The kids picked grapefruit and Meyer Lemon flavors. Bring cash though, it’s cash only and Reid and I only had enough cash for the kids.

Best Ice Cream

            Lappert’s Hawaii

While the kids hunted after the best-shaved ice, Reid and I sought after ice cream. Lappert’s in Hanapepe was our favorite. Rich and creamy and made right in the back of the store. It’s been around since 1983 (that’s not old is it?).

 

The kids are asking us to book our next return trip ASAP and I actually agree with them. Comment below on your favorite Hawaii experiences. I’d love to get more ideas for our next trip!

shirt Sanctuary and here :: pants Who What Wear similar :: glasses Eye Buy Direct : Photo’s by Tasha :: flats Soludos

What are you up to this weekend? We’re packing up the car and heading to our friends Cinco de Mayo party. I see a sun packed day of guac and Corona. Can’t wait. Meanwhile, I’m sharing a couple places we love going to in LA:

Ostrich farm – homemade cinnamon rolls, chic salads, avocado toast, kid friendly, small but chic space. Don’t forget to go early on the weekend.

1525 Sunset Blvd, LA

Scoops – we get requests from the kids to go here weekly as well as their birthdays – at $2.50 a kids scoop, its a hidden LA gem. Not hidden for long.

5105 York Blvd, LA

Paradise Bowls – So yummy we got the smoothies and yummy pitaya bowls. Don’t be surprised if there’s a wait.

919 Manhattan Ave, Manhatten Beach

 

Winsome

Urth Caffé
Walking to Copa Vida

Usually harsh, but happy critics, at Winsome

Winsome

Eightfold

eightfold – insta moments everywhere you look thanks to crisp white walls and large windows. Did I mention cool graphic books? Whether you’re a mocha or matcha lover, this stop made number one.

winsome read about my first experience here on the blog.

batavia – U.S. Bank Tower, 633 west 5th St, downtown. If you’re visiting Sky Space, work downtown, or just need refreshment (and really good coffee) this is worth a stop.

dinosaur coffee – 4334 west sunset blvd. (silverlake) kid friendly, outdoor seating, great lighting, and a yummy americano. Bonus: the kids loved the muffins!

urth caffé If you’re a matcha lover, order their blended or iced matcha with boba. A couple sips, and you’re hooked.

intelligentsia 3922 west sunset blvd. (silverlake) I can’t leave this place without getting a “shoefie.” Granada tile makes the vibrant blue tile, and the latte is oh so good. Bring your laptop and stay for work. Love the indoor/outdoor vibes.

honorable mention: COPA VIDA 70 S. Raymond Ave, Pasadena

What are some of your favorites? Comment below! xx

 

shalice-10
While heading to the Four Seasons Westlake for their 5th annual Let it Snow event, we did not know what to expect other than pictures with Santa and a train ride. Since moving from Chicago last December, this Christmas marks our first one sans family and the beginning of a new chapter and new traditions. And the Four Seasons is a great place to start. After checking in, a super friendly staff offered us champagne and cake pops before taking us up to our gorgeous suite. Because of our large family, we had a beautiful corner king suite with a pull out couch, king room, and foyer. (And yes, despite all that room, we still needed a bed rolled in for the littlest.) Probably my favorite part of our stay-cation at the Four Seasons Westlake Let it Snow event, besides the awesome breakfast burritos, was how much they catered to each child and made them feel so special. From stuffed animal Sven dolls stuffed into mini white robes, four brownie cakes delivered to our room with the words “welcome” written on them, and breakfast with the Disney characters (hello Charlie Brown and Elsa!) to the awesome kids buffet piled with teddy bears, strawberry milk and fresh waffles, all at the perfect kid height might I add, no detail was forgotten.  If we needed anything, their staff was alert and very friendly. While not all cities like Los Angeles are kid friendly (or cater to children, let alone four of them), Four Seasons Westlake exceeded our expectations. The kids response to our departure was, “Can we do this every weekend?”

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OUR TOP 4

  1. TRAIN RIDE 2. ICE SKATING 3. DECORATING COOKIES with MRS. CLAUSE 4. BREAKFAST WITH THE DISNEY CHARACTERS

Thank you Four Seasons Westlake for partnering on this post

 

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Q & A 

1. How is it having a large family in Los Angeles? I think it’s important to know what places, and neighborhoods are more kid friendly etc. Read my post on 5 kid friendly LA.

2. When do you style outfits? Honestly, some of the best “editing” i.e. trying on, taking off, and more mixing, less matching happens when the house is quiet, the last child has gone to sleep! I can gather my thoughts, write copy, and return emails.

3. Tell us something we don’t know . . . Well, I have 250 pairs of shoes in my house, but can never find a pen. True Story.

4. Will we be seeing any short videos coming soon? Yes! Glad you asked, we filmed one last week coming soon! Eeek! I’m somewhat camera shy, so it was fun to crawl out of my shell. Meanwhile, just enjoy my short boomerangs on Instagram.

5. Where are you going next? I’m planning a trip to NYC, so comment with your must see, must eat, must drink, must everything.

6. Tell us about your week  . . . My family has been in town which means we’re going to the beach, using 14 eggs for scrambled eggs in the morning and using lots of paper plates. No shame! And did I mention, there’s an inch of sand on my floors? It has been a treat seeing the cousins bond all over again since last seeing each other in January. If you think about it, its really just a short time together before they all part ways, some to different schools and a very wide 2200 miles away from each other. I get choked up just thinking about it. I am also needing versatility in my dressing since time is always of the essence as a busy mom.

Any Last Words? Sometimes you just need a $39 dress worn as a top, and laugh about all the scrambled eggs on the floor. Memories in the making.

dress LEITH (only $39 till August 8th!)  :: jeans AG JEANS (fits tts, also on sale!) :: sandals AGL

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We have a family confession to make. We are closet house flippers. Those of you who have been with me awhile have probably noticed that we move and or buy a house more often than the average family. I have never really classified us as closet house flippers, but now that I think about it, we may need an intervention!

We started in Bucktown, a trendy little neighborhood in Chicago. Then we moved to Wheaton, a suburb of Chicago. Two years later, it was back to the city! Then we made the big move to Los Angeles. While renting in LA, we bought the Lake Arrowhead A-Frame.  That was our first major renovation/remodel (a process that we kinda fell in love with!). After selling our A-frame, we bought our current home. We absolutely love this house and had intended to stay here long-term. But this past year ended up being so crazy, as everybody knows. Working from home full-time and doing school at home full-time made us realize that we really needed more bedrooms and our super unique house wasn’t as kid-friendly as we had imagined. And as we longed to be within a day’s drive of our extended family, we made the hard decision to sell our beloved home. If only we could pick it up and move it with us! (We are actually making photocopies of the building plans – maybe we will one day rebuild it.) 

With that decided, we went through the stressful journey of selling our home, living in the house while selling, and holding off on purchasing a new home until our sale was more finalized. I’ve got tips and tricks for dealing with all these experiences at the end of the post!  

After we decided to sell, the big question was where to go? We took a quick trip to Tennessee, as it was pretty central to both our families. So many people have been relocating there and the housing market is hot, which we learned the hard way. Everything we liked was either pending or sold. Then my best friend, who had just recently moved herself, called while we were in TN. She said the house next door to them just came on the market.  We looked it up online and liked what we saw. It wasn’t quite where we were expecting to go, but the house checked so many of our boxes. We quickly revised our Nashville trip itinerary and woke up early Sunday morning to drive down to see it. Guess where we drove? North Atlanta! The drive through Georgia was beautiful and we totally got that feeling–it felt like home. The fact that we knew the neighbors was the icing on the cake. So we put in an offer and by the time we landed back in LA, the offer had been accepted. 

The new house is more traditional than we are used to. But we like to think we are purchasing this house with the kids’ quality of life in mind.  Our LA home didn’t really have a yard … really more of a cliff.  So we are trading in the beautiful California lifestyle for the green, wooded pastures of Georgia.  I was technically born in Texas, so I guess I am a southern girl at heart. We are very thankful for our life in California and the wonderful years we had here! We’ll definitely be traveling back often to continue the Shalice Noel line. More to come in the future, but for now, I’m off to pack! 

Tips for Having a House on the Market and Moving: 

  1.  Quick cleans are essential, but declutter first!! Quick cleans are much easier when there is less junk. Keep your counters clean throughout the week in case you have a last minute showing. 
  2. Strategize where you want to go. The easiest way to do this? List what is important to you! Community, Land, Design, Jobs? We are thankful for the North Atlanta area because we wanted land, but also access to a metropolitan area for Reid’s career opportunities. 

We can’t wait to share more of the house, the pool, and this process. Add your questions in the comments and I’ll answer. Thank you for being on the journey with us from Chicago to LA to now Georgia!

Lots of love.

xo

Shalice

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