by gillian claire: November 2016

11.23.2016

giving the gift of art / with Chalkola.

* I was compensated for this post and received these products free of charge. 
All words + opinions expressed are my own. 
Thanks for supporting my family by reading along; I truly appreciate it!*
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My kids are really into art right now. They've always been little artists but they definitely go through phases. I was so excited when Chalkola wanted to partner with my blog because I knew their chalk markers would make a perfect birthday present for Roman! His birthday is coming up in December and I always have to get creative to think up enough presents to cover birthday and Christmas for him! I loved the packaging of the Chalkola markers and I thought it was be neat to get Roman something a little different to add to his art collection.
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Asher and I did this super secret photoshoot while Roman was at school and Ash was pretty pumped that he got to try out Roman's present first. Chalkola sent us their 8 pack of jumbo chalk markers as well as a 10 pack of thinner chalk markers that comes with 6 metallic markers.
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I really had no idea what to expect with the idea of "chalk ink markers." The team at Chalkola let me know that these markers work best on non-porous surfaces such as chalkboards, whiteboards, glass and windows. I picked up a couple little chalkboards and whiteboards at the dollar store for us to use. (You guys, does anyone else love the Dollar Tree?)
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Asher had so much fun trying these out and having a little art time after school. The ink is super bright and it's definitely unique to any craft product I've used. I was not prepared for how messy this would be. For some reason when I heard the word "chalk," I was thinking dry but the ink that comes out of these markers are more of a paint consistency. They are definitely worth the mess but I would not suggest doing this on your carpets as shown here! Next time I will for sure have the boys doing this project on a better surface but hey it's all in the name of pretty blog photos, right?
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Chalkola is currently offering my readers 20% off any order through Amazon with code: 20OFFSTR  
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These markers would make a great Christmas present for your kids who are into art. I think that it's always nice to have some new, fun art supplies stashed away for those horrible cold winter months!
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Have you guys heard of chalk markers? What cool presents are you starting to stash away for your kids this Christmas?
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11.11.2016

portraits of ash at 5.

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This little boy... he let me do a little photo shoot of him in exchange 
for an extra piece of Halloween candy. Bribery captured by camera once again. 
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     Asher started Kindergarten this year; his very first year at school. Honestly we have spent the entire last year preparing him for this, easing his mind into this idea of "school," and most importanty the idea of being away from us. This boy has always been our wild little soul; needy, sensitive and sometimes yes, difficult. With the difficulties though have come great rewards; the sweetest and most unique soul, a child who needs me deeply and in turn has made my need for him strong and fierce as well. Words cannot even begin to describe Asher who has been a fiery, wonderful and treasured gift in my life.
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     I honestly didn't know how he'd react to school. I feared that it would be incredibly rough for him. But friends, it has been a dreamy seemless transistion. As with most things in his life; potty training, weaning from breastfeeding, etc... transitions often seem insurrmountable for Asher but out of nowhere he is ready to go all in.
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     Kindergarten at Asher's school is full day but we found out that you can indeed pick your child up before lunch and take them home and you better believe that's what we chose. I don't know why I'm always trying so hard to keep my kids with me every possible minute of the day. In a way it's maybe made motherhood more exhausting and weary but these boys have always been my life's dream so I'll continue hanging on as hard as I can.
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     Asher loves school. He jumps out of bed every morning to pick out his cute little 5T tee shirts and jogger sweatpants. He comes home and sings all the songs and repeats all the cute little rhymes word for word. He brings home a backpack filled with the cutest little crumpled Kindergarten art that makes my heart melt day after day. He's very good at math and is learning to read and write. He was over the moon about Halloween and had by far the scariest costume in the class, his dream come true. He's happy and it looks like he's doing just fine...
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I'm so proud of you, Ash. Thanks for taking me up on that extra piece of candy so that I could capture these moments with pictures and words.
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11.08.2016

insta-october

you guys, my poor neglected real camera and blog have some serious jealousy of my iphone and instagram... it's just so easy to keep up there outside the world of lightroom and photoshop and blog editing! i did actually pick up my camera yesterday though and it felt good!
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here are some instagram photos from october. all of these pictures are sooo fall-ish and i love it! fall in colorado has absolutely been *amazing* guys. unseasonably warm and i couldn't be happier!
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i tried to make an effort to do more stereotypical halloween things this year. in ohio, we had so much family around that holidays always seemed special and filled with things to do. in colorado, we have to be much more intentional about it since it's all up to us. maybe it's strange but i'm just not naturally into holidays but this year we did the pumpkin patch, 
carved pumpkins, went to trick or treat street
  and had a fabulous night trick or treating with friends. ( <- that part no one had to talk me into! )

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october skies // i'm already missing the pinker summer sunsets - the sky is changing so much!

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// i will definitely miss all the free clothes i got from work // 

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// the mountains in the fall guys... horses in front of the mountains in the fall guys... //

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// me + my babies headed to trick or treat street. aren't they absolute babes? //

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// more mountains in the fall ... this stuff never gets old //

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pretty fall feels at the coffee drive thru // rose gold lip stick from the dollar store. 
( i buy all my lipstick from the dollar store! )
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 i hope you all had a beautiful october as well!
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are you following me on instagram? @bygillianclaire
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leave a comment if you find me so that i can follow back!
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