Why I Celebrate Halloween (Even As A Christian)

Why I Celebrate Halloween (Even As A Christian) |theprimarilyinspired.com|

Every year when October 31st creeps up I always come across articles and blog posts on the subject of Halloween and the decision to participate or not. Either you’re on the side where it’s all in good fun or the complete other side and shelter yourself until November 1st. As always, what a family decides to do (or not do) is completely their choice and I stand in support of that, even if I may disagree. But, hey…that’s what’s so great about raising your own family. I recognize this discussion is a sensitive one because it ties together two major topics: religion and family, but today I’m attempting to, at the very least, get discussion started about how families celebrate Halloween and how we can end the stigma surrounding this holiday.

First, I should mention that I am guilty of feeling, what’s the big deal? Just because my family might dress up as characters from Harry Potter one year doesn’t mean I’m shedding my faith for an evening and taking up witchcraft. Or if I watch a scary movie that all of a sudden I should be shamed by others or God about that choice. Instead, I choose to celebrate Halloween for the fun that comes with establishing those family traditions that incorporate gathering, creativity, and keeping God first through my attitude, dress, and level of participation. Here’s how I do that and questions I ask along the way:

Family Traditions

Halloween, or really any holiday, is made up mostly of the family traditions in which you start and share with one another. Just because you decorate your home with harvest decor and scented candles or take your kids to the pumpkin patch doesn’t mean you have to go trick-or-treating, visit a haunted house, or otherwise participate in the scary side of the holiday. I agree that everyone has their own interpretation of this holiday and what is considered scary; some are lighthearted and fun whereas others can be over the top and borderline obscene. Keeping that in mind, it’s important to remember that anyone can establish what their traditions will be and the extent to which you choose to  participate.

I would say to ask yourself each year: “Are my family traditions in keeping with how God wants us to live as Christians?”

Halloween’s History

Although, if we want to fully discuss Halloween one must come to understand it’s historical, and even Christian (All Saints Day), beginnings. With an understanding that like most things over time this holiday became muddled and evolved into something completely different. For example, death is a consequence of our early sins dating back to Adam and Eve and is an unfortunate circumstance in which we will all experience eventually. Historically, death played a large role in the early churches across cultures and prayers, feasts, and other acts of remembrance were ways in which family members could help the souls of those who passed prepare for heaven. Down the line, various forms of these customs were established and, again, evolved into some of the traditions we participate in today.

Did you know trick-or-treating is a variation of early begging in America? With a flood of Irish immigrants (thanks to the potato famine), children would dress up and go door-to-door asking for food or money. Women even believed they could nab themselves a husband by doing various tricks! via

So why is death something we need to shelter ourselves and our families from on this day? What is the harm in dressing up in family costumes and snacking on some candy?

Celebrating Halloween as a Christian

The Bible indeed does tell us a lot about keeping away from the darkness, the occult, devil worship and so on. The Bible is our sword and armor against such things and it is our responsibility, or any believer of Christ, to continue living out our faith – even on such holidays as Halloween. However, I believe I can still live and reflect a redeemed life for my son and family by how I/we choose to participate. Even some churches have their own Halloween-esque celebrations! I remember my old church back home on the east coast who every year hosts a Trunk-Or-Treat evening and it was always a lot of fun – especially for the little kids. Many churches around the country do the same and still manage keep God’s glory in the center of their activities.

Is there a way to glorify God even in participating in some aspects of Halloween?

Moving Forward

Regardless of whether or not I agree or disagree with how you choose to participate in Halloween, it’s vital that all of us keep Romans 14 in our hearts about this subject and the many others that divide our opinions. As a Christian I find celebrating the fun and lighthearted side of Halloween to be an enjoyable part of the season and especially so as Greyson grows up.

Why I Celebrate Halloween (Even As A Christian) |theprimarilyinspired.com|

What are your thoughts? Do you celebrate Halloween or ban it? How do you explain your family’s choice to others?

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Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms

Being a mom it’s all about finding and sticking to those baby products that are tried and true, safe, and practical for our minimal lifestyle. Living minimally has not only changed my outlook on ‘stuff’, but it’s allowed me to cut out the clutter and really invest in items for the home that have multiple purposes whether it be furniture, clothing, or anything in-between. My husband is the true minimalist; I only adopted it after we moved in together years ago. I’ll be honest: it was a difficult transition to make considering my single-hood allowed me to collect all sorts of things without anyone telling me, “do you really need that?” However, over the past few years I’ve really come to appreciate living minimally because it’s given our home purpose and free from the accumulation of uneccesary things.

Insert baby and thus the real challenge began. As any new mom does, I quickly created a baby registry and found myself overwhelmed by the number of things that are out there; do I really need a ‘pee-pee teepee’ and why are there a zillion different types of bottles or pacifiers? Has America overcomplicated parenting?

Regardless, we stuck with purchasing the necessary items first such as a carseat (you can’t take the baby home without one) and crib and what we didn’t receive as gifts we waited until Greyson arrived to find out what we really needed. Living in a one bedroom apartment, it doesn’t really allow for frivolous baby spending and acquiring so being smart about what truly was a ‘must-have’ was crucial. Thanks to The Baby Cubby for reaching out and allowing me this opportunity to share with you my baby gear must-haves for those fellow minimalist moms out there.

Thank you to The Baby Cubby for allowing me this opportunity to share their wonderful products with you. Although I received product in exchange for this review, all opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

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One: Baby Jogger City Mini GT – Single

One item that can be essential for parents, or the SAHM like me, is a stroller that has all-terrain wheels such as this Baby Jogger City Mini GT stroller. Often times I want to take Greyson for a walk on gravel, dirt paths, or anything that isn’t a smooth paved road and our current stroller doesn’t quite allow me to do that. A jogger is a worthwhile investment for those mamas who are looking to get out of the house.

Two: Stokke Flexi-Bath – White

The concept for this foldable bathtub is pure genius and one item I couldn’t wait to receive. When Greyson first came home and began giving him baths we loved using our 4Moms Infant Tub. Flash forward to my now seven month old he was in need for a new tub. I literally had spent days trying to find either a chair for our bathtub or invest in the popular suction mats – but I wasn’t in love with either option. Then I found that Baby Cubby carries a foldable bath tub just for my little guy, which he could use up until 4 years old. OMG baby bathtub jackpot.

I love that I don’t waste water, it’s easily cleaned and stored after every use, has rubber lining for a non-slip grip, and not to mention, transportable! Quite possibly the best baby product we have yet.

Stokke Foldable Baby Tub | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

Stokke Foldable Baby Tub | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

The grey lining is a non-slip rubber which securely seats my son. There is also a water line that rings the tub which tells you the proper amount to fill it.

Stokke Foldable Baby Tub | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

Stokke Foldable Baby Tub | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

Three: Maxi-Cosi 2015 Pria 70 Convertible Carseat

A convertible carseat a serious must-have only because you want to invest in baby gear that will last you more than just a few months. The AAP just released a new recommendation that children should be rear facing until at least 2 years of age whereas the common practice was 1 years old. This is important for any mom and investing in a carseat that can grow with your child is crucial and, not to mention, budget-friendly.

Four: Little Unicorn Cotton Muslin Crib Sheet – Forrest Friends

I absolutely adore this fitted crib sheet not only because it comes in such a cute woodland theme but that it’s 100% cotton muslin. That’s right. The same fabric as many of my swaddle blankets!

Little Unicorn Muslin Fitted Crib Sheet | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com|

Little Unicorn Cotton Muslin Fitted Crib Sheet - Forrest Friends | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

Five: Oeuf Sparrow Crib – White

When looking for the perfect crib we had a few non-negotiables: it had to be sturdy and safe, convert into a toddler bed, and come in a white finish to go with the rest of his nursery decor. Baby Cubby’s Oeuf Sparrow Crib fulfills each of those preferences and more. I love the contemporary look and the fact that it is made sustainably in Europe with non-toxic finishes. Best yet, it is a convertible crib so it can grow with your child – worth the investment.

Six: Bebe au Lait Nursing Cover – La Jolla

A consideration for all breastfeeding mamas out there is to determine which kind of nursing cover works for you. I personally received a scarf cover and I love it for different reasons. However, having a cover such as this one allows for breathability and ventilation for baby. I did find that the nursing cover I had made Greyson stuffy so if I could go back in time and make the switch I would opt for this open neckline!

Seven: 4Moms MamaRoo

I absolutely love the brand 4Moms because they’re exactly that: for moms. I feel as though their designs and innovations for baby gear is in line with what real moms need and babies expect. I can’t speak highly enough of our MamaRoo swing because it sways and moves just like we would if we were holding Greyson. He loved it as a newborn and it provided some relief for me as a new mom too. I would place him in it and set it to whichever movement he enjoyed at the moment and would place it next to the sofa so I could catch a few zzz’s while falling asleep to reruns of Catfish #truelife. I used their newborn insert (sold separately) then took it out once Grey grew enough to fit in the swing on his own. Such a great investment.

4Moms MamaRoo | Baby Gear Must-Haves For Minimalist Moms |theprimarilyinspired.com

Eight: Owlet Baby Monitor

If there is one product out there that is hands down the most worthy of an investment it’s Owlet Baby Care and their monitor.  If you didn’t know, an owlet is the term for a baby owl and considering owls are nocturnal (meaning they’re awake at night) it makes for the perfect baby monitor metaphor. It is a brand that boasts peace of mind and it couldn’t be further than the truth. I’ve been able to sleep soundly at night because my base station glows a slight pulsing green, which tells me my son has healthy and normal vital signs. It helps protect parents against SIDS in that it will notify you if your child’s heart rate or oxygen levels are below normal – just watch the testimonial videos if you need convincing. It’s an investment, but I would happily invest in my son’s wellbeing. I’d be happy to talk with you more in the comments if you have any questions about our experience with Owlet.

Nine: Skip Hop Chelsea Downtown Chic Backpack

If I could go back and redecide on a proper diaper bag it would hands down be a backpack. We are a family on-the-go and it’s important that Greyson’s things are as well. If it’s not weekend getaways it’s simple evenings out to dinner and we’ve found that it’s important that we save on space and really consider the things Greyson would need while we’re away from the house. A backpack is a wonderful alternative to a traditional diaper bag and, for minimalists, it only provides enough space to truly take what’s necessary and allow for the convenience of carrying it on your back.

So what makes The Baby Cubby so great and different from any other baby retailer? And why am I sharing them with you today? Well, it’s pretty simple actually…

When I was approached by them I couldn’t help but peruse through their website and social media and I was amazed at what I found. I was encouraged to actually engage with them as a new mom versus just shopping from them. The best part is that they not only have an in-store experience, but they offer their customers multiple ways to get involved in the conversation through their blog, social media, and their website. Parenthood can be overwhelming at times and it’s nice to know that The Baby Cubby is there as a resource for me and other moms around the country – because they are parents. Sometimes it’s helpful to have your village be there for you; even if it’s online. I urge all of you to check them out and discover for yourself what I love so much about this brand!

Linking up with Momfessionals, Diary of a Real Housewife, and Sept-Farm

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Fall Trend Inspirations For Less than $50 | PinkBlush

Fall has officially been here for over a month and as October winds down and November begins I am filled with all kinds of style envy and inspiration! I stumbled upon PinkBlush last year when I was pregnant with Greyson and was looking for cute, and affordable, maternity styles – huge emphasis on affordable. Now that I am seven months postpartum I am eager to resume my normal wardrobe and get back into everyday clothes that don’t have an elastic waistband or otherwise make me feel trapped in my nursing tops.

PinkBlush offers us ladies stylish options for every step of our pregnancies; from the bump to transitioning back to our pre-pregnancy wardrobe. I personally love the quality and how each of their pieces reflect current trends so I am sure to feel my best through each stage of mommy-hood. What’s great about their selection of clothes is that you can invest in pieces that can easily be worn throughout your pregnancy and beyond – no need to invest in clothes you’ll only wear for a few months! Yay!

Fall Trend Inspirations For Less Than $50 | PinkBlush | What is inspiring your fall wardrobe this season? See more at theprimarilyinspired.com

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Another great aspect of PinkBlush is that they are constantly adding new pieces and today I am sharing my top fall style inspirations from their newest round of arrivals.

Fall Trend Inspirations For Less Than $50 | PinkBlush | What is inspiring your fall wardrobe this season? See more at theprimarilyinspired.com

One: Burgundy Cowl-neck Knit Poncho $46

Ponchos are my newest fashion obsession at the moment. I love that it’s an outerwear piece that can be worn like a sweater. This one also comes in black and navy in addition to burgundy, but I’m particularly loving this deep red color especially for fall. I feel like a poncho is a great alternative to wearing a jacket and perfect for traveling with!

Two: Ivory Cutout V-Neckline Blouse $36

I am all about simple details and this v-neck blouse offers just the slightest of detail along the neckline and down the blouse. It’s lightweight and flowy, which are two great features in a blouse especially for my postpartum body. It’s also a top that can easily transition through the seasons or be layered with other cardigans or accessories.

Three: Ivory Pocket 3/4 Sleeve Top $31

Another great layering piece this ivory top – I’m digging the 3/4 length sleeves! I love this look of wearing a white cami underneath and styling with simple jewelry or scarf for those lighter weather days. Pair with your favorite skinny jeans and booties for a complete, casual look!

Fall Trend Inspirations For Less Than $50 | PinkBlush | What is inspiring your fall wardrobe this season? See more at theprimarilyinspired.com

Four: Black Plaid Open Cardigan $39

Another obsession of mine are open cardigans. I rarely ever button cardigans I do have and after receiving this and this from a maternity *Stitch Fix box I’m officially a convert.

*Stitch Fix referral link. Using this link allows me to use a credit towards future fixes and the ability to share them with you! Earn your own referral link when you sign up for free. Thank you in advance!!

Five: White Textured Cutout Flat $29

Flats are any woman’s best friend because they can lend themselves to be causal or work-friendly all-the-while being comfortable. The texture to these flats as well as the cutout shape are on trend this year and I could seriously wear them with anything. Literally anything.

Six: Taupe Front Tie Cutout Pointed Flat $28

These front tie flats are super trendy right now and a style I have always wanted to try for myself. I see how others wear them and they’re so friggin’ cute! I’m really liking the side cutout details, which takes this traditional flat to another styling level.

Fall Trend Inspirations For Less Than $50 | PinkBlush | What is inspiring your fall wardrobe this season? See more at theprimarilyinspired.com

Seven: Burgundy Chiffon-Lined Tunic $38

I love the burgundy color of this top and the layering effect with the chiffon trim along the bottom. It’s a cozy sweater material and I would actually order it one size smaller than I normally would considering I don’t want to look like I’m swimming in it. I like my loose fitting tops to be fitted around the shoulders and bust so that the remaining fabric just hangs like in the photo. This top also comes in charcoal and olive too!

Eight: Ivory Cable Knit Sweater $38

If you couldn’t tell already I love knit sweaters, ivory colors, and material that is breathable. Although we do experience chillier months in central CA, it’s important for me to invest in lightweight sweaters such as this one that way I can easily layer it with a scarf for extra warmth if need be. Another trend you’ll notice is the oversized look. Since I’m still transitioning back into my pre-pregnancy clothes I love tops that are more loose fitting and drape versus body-hugging tops.

Nine: Taupe Faux Leather Flap Crossbody $34

I love a good crossbody because it makes bringing a purse that much more convenient, especially toting an infant around. This neutral color is gorgeous and I love that it can be paired with any outfit, which is key for me. I also love that it’s a great size; not too big, not too small, perfect for taking just the necessities.

Fall Trend Inspirations For Less Than $50 | PinkBlush | What is inspiring your fall wardrobe this season? See more at theprimarilyinspired.com

Have you heard of PinkBlush before? What are your fall style inspirations this season?

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Styling Fall’s Favorite Accessory

Pin To Present: The Yellow Scarf: See how I styled my causal day out in Santa Barbara using items I already owned! |theprimarilyinspired.com|

Although I wouldn’t consider myself someone with a particular sense of ‘style’ I do, however, love trying new outfits and adding different pieces to my closet thanks large in part to Stitch Fix and pieces I’ve had tucked away for a few years now. I am by no means a fashion blogger either – you can find all my old style posts back when I first began blogging. Rather I am always looking for inspiration especially since becoming a mom and realizing my body isn’t what it used to be. My waistline has shifted, I still have some baby weight to lose, and finding clothes that fit me just right helps me get out of my yoga pants and nursing tops. I don’t want to feel as though being a new mom has shoved me into a style corner where I feel trapped. Rather, I am excited to find outfit inspiration that lends itself to being nursing friendly, makes me feel confident by hiding those unforgiving areas, and allows me to still feel like me.

Today I’m sharing how I pulled together a quick outfit for a getaway to Santa Barbara. Here in central California it’s all about how you layer and the material of clothing you’re working with. The temperatures fluctuate, even here by the ocean, and I am constantly going between snuggling up or shedding layers throughout the week. This outfit is perfect for those kinds of days where the morning chill allows for a little extra layer and the possibility of taking those layers off in the afternoon to place them back once the sun starts to set. Let’s take a closer look!

Pin To Present: The Yellow Scarf: See how I styled my causal day out in Santa Barbara using items I already owned! |theprimarilyinspired.com|

The pin is originally from another blog called Pop of Style and Missy actually used the post to discuss how to style her camouflage flats. Instead, I opted to wear my leopard print flats I bought from Banana Republic a number of years ago. I always love styling those flats because the print allows me to feel a touch edgy even though edgy is far from what I would describe my overall style.

Oh, and if you haven’t realized already from Instagram and how I’ve imposed it onto my son, I love stripes; so any excuse to wear them is a good day in my book. The top I’m wearing is from J.Crew Factory and I just love the hidden buttons. The material is lightweight and I love a good sleeveless top considering I always run hot and makes layering a breeze (no bunching with the cardigan). The cardigan is an oldie from Banana Republic Factory, but this black cardigan from one of my Stitch Fix boxes (maternity no less!) would also pair nicely with this outfit too. My jeans are a skinny jean from Gap and I love them because they’re actual denim – meaning no stretch. Stretch is pretty fantastic, but I want my jeans to feel like jeans. Does that make sense? And finally the staple piece that brings it all together is one of my favorite accessories ever: the yellow scarf; of which I picked up from a Marshall’s from ages ago.

Pin To Present: The Yellow Scarf: See how I styled my causal day out in Santa Barbara using items I already owned! |theprimarilyinspired.com|

Scarves are pretty great because they’re easy to style, I can get edgy with various prints, colors, or patterns, and they can be easily taken on and off throughout the day depending on the temps outside. Scarves also come in all kinds of textures and varying degrees of heaviness so I can enjoy them year-round. I’m actually really looking forward to when the temperature around here will begin to drop so that I can dust off my scarf drawer!

What I love about personal style is that you don’t need on-trend items or even expensive pieces to have style. It’s all about how you see colors and patterns and find ways to work them together. This outfit was hella adorable and I was able to create it with things I already had in my closet and of which were purchases from years ago. However, recognizing that my body has definitely changed since giving birth, I’m excited to be fitted once again by my Stitch Fix stylist in hopes that I can walk away with a few new pieces to add. Yay for new clothes! I’ve scheduled it for November so be on the lookout for that post next month.

OMG it’s November next month?!

Linking up with…Tucker Up

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