Saturday, November 14, 2020

 Hello, and happy weekend!

First, I just want to express my gratitude to you for being here for me, and with me, over the last couple of years: thank you from the bottom of my heart for spending a few minutes of your day with The Lucky Lifestyle. To me, there is nothing more valuable than time, so the fact that you've chosen to spend some of yours reading my words -- whether they were about something deeply personal and meaningful or something more light, like shopping or food -- is truly an honor. I'm honest-to-God still surprised when someone (other than my mom) says they've read a post or read regularly, LOL! So... thank you.

This pandemic has taken a lot, but one thing it's given me is an opportunity to really evaluate what's most important to me. I've spent a lot of time thinking while supervising first grade Zoom calls, feeding three little mouths twelve million snacks a day, and working late nights... and very little time doing. That's frustrated me at times, but it's also been a gift. Sometimes I think we get so caught up in the "doing" that society demands of us that we're not really sure why we're doing it anymore.

I want to be clear that the why of this blog has not changed since the day I started it. I dreamed up a space in 2017 where I could connect with other women, and they could connect with each other. Over the years The Lucky Lifestyle has touched on everything from the ordinary details of every day life, to style, to motherhood, to miscarriage, and more. This space has also highlighted some truly incredible women through the Women Who Inspire series -- probably my favorite posts of all!

And now? Well, I've decided it's time for an intermission.

Why an intermission? Because I don't want to say this is goodbye. I enjoy this too much. I love writing, connecting, sharing, and realizing that we all have way more in common than we could have imagined. The Lucky Lifestyle will still be here, but I will not be posting new content regularly until the time feels right. I never want to post just because I felt obligated to -- that would compromise the authenticity that is so important to me. So you may see a new post pop up if something really moves me to write, or you may see this space grow into something else... something new. As I grow each year, so do my expectations for The Lucky Lifestyle and everything else I'm passionate about. I'm not sure what's next, but I'm taking this strange year and these strange times and listening as best I can to what it's telling me.

In the meantime, please please please shoot me a request at @jenpadrontucker on Instagram (you probably know by now that I keep the page private to protect my kiddos, but will go through and personally approve requests!). I mean it sincerely when I say I'd love to stay in touch.

Be well, sweet friends. See you soon. :)

Five on Friday | What I'm Loving

Friday, November 13, 2020

 Happy Friday! I got a little nervous when I realized it was Friday the 13th. In the year 2020. Ha! Let's just all cross our fingers and lay low. ;)

I'm excited to share a big ol' random collection of things (& moments) I've been loving lately with you today. I usually enjoy reading these types of posts, so hopefully you do too! 

PS: how pretty is that recent sunset we got to enjoy?

Loving Lately

1. Two New Favorite Recipes: Skillet Taco Pizza & Stuffed Shells Florentine

We were in a rut with dinners so I've been trying some new-to-us recipes to shake things up. Two winners were this skillet taco pizza (which, I admit, I made in our dutch oven because we don't have a skillet *adding to the Christmas list*) and these baked stuffed shells florentine. If you're looking for something new to make, give these a try!

Skillet Taco Pizza

2. Custom Name Bracelets

I really wanted some bracelets with the girls' names on them, and these from the Etsy shop SandyPeachandCo were perfect! They are such a nice weight, don't feel cheap at all, but the price point was great. I love how they go with everything and, of course, have the names of my lovely little ladies on them.

3. Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice

Are you sick of pumpkin spice yet? I meant to share this earlier in the season, but if you're a pumpkin lover you need to try both the pumpkin creme cold brew from Starbucks and Starbucks Pumpkin Spice creamer (I found mine at Target) -- literally tastes like a piece of pumpkin pie. 

I get questions on this mug sometimes, and it's from the Hearth & Hand line at Target. I can't find it online, but it might still be in store!

3. Holiday Goodies

From pumpkin spice to Christmas -- 2020 is confusing, amiright? If you're over the pumpkin and more in the mood for gingerbread and peppermint in your mug, you must try these incredible cookies I picked up on a whim this week. And check out this adorable mug! It's the little things.

4. New Dog Tags for Max

Max's name tag came in and it's SO cute! This terrible picture does it no justice. We ordered it from a company called Two Tails Pet Company. It's navy and rose gold, and the front says "I'm lost, somebody call my mama" while the back is engraved with his name and our contact info. They're running a 10% off sale today!

5. J.Crew Winter Accessories (now 45% off!)

I've taken the approach of getting new accessories instead of new outfits for the holidays this year, since we really won't be seeing many people. I figure a new headband or piece of jewelry will be all I need, ha! J.Crew's accessories are always some of my favorites, and I recently scooped up this cute knotted headband and this ear-warmer for all of my chilly walks with Max.

What have you been loving lately? Wishing you a wonderful weekend ahead!

Monday Coffee Talk | Life Lately

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Welcome November!

Typically this is one of my favorite months of the year. Thanksgiving is my absolute favorite holiday, the fun and anticipation of the holidays has officially begun, my first baby was born this month, we got engaged in November... there are just a lot of fun, happy feelings for this month. This year is going to be different, for sure. Thanksgiving won't look the same as we're not sure what we're doing or how we're celebrating yet. What are your plans for Thanksgiving this year?

But even so, I refuse to let the craziness of 2020 steal joy away from one of the happiest and most magical months. We will still find ways to make it fun and special.

In that spirit, I wanted to pop in to see how your Halloween was! We had such a fun day. We ate some fun Halloween-themed meals, carved our jack-o-lantern, took a family walk, and the girls helped me bag up candy for trick-or-treaters. After our traditional mummy dog dinner, we headed out with our three princesses for some trick-or-treating fun. I was so happy, relieved, and impressed with how our neighborhood handled it! Tons of creative ways to hand out candy to the kids, including decorated tables, creepy costumes, even haunted yards. The girls got to walk around for about half the time with their neighbor/friend and then we parted ways, dropped the baby and pup back off at the house, and continued on in the darkness for more candy! 

Hoping no matter how you celebrated, you had a nice weekend and hopefully scored some full-sized candy bars along the way. ;)

Rewinding a bit, last weekend Steve and I got to embark on our first date night in almost 9 months! His parents came over for a visit and offered to hang out with the girls while we went and grabbed dinner on the patio at a nearby restaurant, picked up some Starbucks, and even voted (talk about an efficient date night!). It felt so good to have some time together and a real adult conversation (of course we mostly talked about the girls, haha).

What else? We recently got our yearly family photos taken. Families with small kids, this was a GAME CHANGER: the mini session! It was 15 minutes long, which was the perfect amount of time for kids (and pets... and husbands... ha). The full hour is great for capturing a ton of different pictures, but if you just need an update and something for a holiday card, I highly recommend the mini session. You know what else was a game changer? Getting matching dresses (H&M for the win as usual) for our two big girls. I know photographers tell you not to match -- and I am in complete agreement for the most part! -- but if you have 3 kids, I feel like matching two of them and changing it up with the third makes things so much easier. 

Sara McCaffrey Photography

Lastly, thank you for your warm welcome for our Max (a little intro and more details about our new pup can be found in this post)! He's doing wonderfully. We finally heard him bark which we feel like is a good sign he's warming up and feels like this is his home too. He is such a good boy and we all love him very much already.

It felt good to catch up! I hope all is healthy and well your way, and that you have a great week. xo

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