Mint – Cacao Banana Smoothie

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This smoothie is SO, SO good. I’ve been making it, with variations, for breakfast this past week. If you have all of the ingredients on hand, it only takes a couple seconds to throw together. The raw cacao has so many health benefits and it tastes like chocolate {healthy chocolate}!

Gather all of the ingredients.

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In your high speed blender add 1 frozen banana, 2 tablespoons of raw cacao powder, 1  tablespoon of cacao nibs, 1 cup of almond milk, a few springs of mint leaves, 2 teaspoons honey, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. {I’ve also made it with adding 1 tablespoons Spirulina, a few handfuls of spinach or some kale – or whatever greens you have on hand}. Blend on high speed until well combined. You can add a few ice cubes if you think it’s too thin.

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Pour into a cup and enjoy!

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Post by Ali: Papery & Cakery

Nod Traveling Road Show

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We’re so excited about our Holiday Collection that we thought we should take it on the road. We’ve partnered with many of our favorite bloggers across the country to host Nod Trunk Shows tonight, Thursday, November 21st.

At each location we’ve partnered with a blogger to showcase our exclusive assortment of toys and holiday décor. So, it’s a chance to see just how they deck their halls with Nod product. And maybe inspire you to add a little holiday cheer to your home.

If you want a peek into the festivities, follow us on Instagram @thelandofnod or search #nodevents for photos and posts from all of our participants.

Here’s where we’re going and who we’re visiting! Check out their blogs…these ladies are pretty amazing!

Atlanta, GA

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Our host is Joni of Lay Baby Lay. Joni’s blog is chock full of nursery design inspiration. If you’ve ever seen a drop dead gorgeous nursery mood board on Pinterest, chances Joni created it! You can also follow Joni on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @laybabylay

 

Boise, ID

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Our host in Boise is Kirsten of Simply Grove. Kirsten’s blog is all interior eye candy. She designs bright, beautiful spaces that are minimal with a ton of soul. Definitely check out her site if you’re redecorating any room in your home. You can follow Kirsten on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @simplygrove 

Charleston, SC

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Our host here is Chassity Evans of Look Linger Love. Chassity has an insane sense of style and her blog is filled with beautiful things, including fashion, interiors and entertaining. Also, Chassity and her family were featured in a recent Nod catalog as one of our Real Families…check them out here, they’re adorable!! You can follow Chassity on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @looklingerlove

Washington D.C.

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We have two hosts in D.C. First, Darcy of No Monsters In My Bed. Darcy blogs about life in D.C. with three kiddos. She’s also been a longtime contributor to Honest to Nod, and was also a Nod Real Family

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Our other D.C. hosts are Rebecca and Suzanne of A Feteful Life. Over at A Feteful Life these ladies are serving up all things DIY for creating simple, never plain parties.  You can follow them on twitter and Pinterest @fetefullife

Kansas City, MO

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Our hosts in Kansas City are the creative minds behind Ampersand Design Studio, Carrie and Morgan. Their aesthetic is clean and playful and always on trend. I dare you to visit their shop without buying a little treasure for yourself…in fact, my iphone case is an Ampersand Design. 

Follow them on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @ampersandstudio

Los Angeles, CA

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We have two hosts in LA, as well. First, our venue is uber exciting…the lovely ladies at Honest Company have agreed to let us host the party in their super fabulous corporate office. It’s like no corporate office you’ve ever seen, check out their Instagram for some sneak peeks at the space @honest

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If that’s not enough, Kelly of  Studio DIY is decking the place out for the party. Kelly’s pretty much the queen of fabulous party décor. Every time I pin a genius DIY craft or party décor item, it’s inevitably from Kelly’s site. I’m not sure how she comes up with this stuff, but you should for sure check out her blog, and follow her on Instagram, twitter and Pinterest @studiodiy

Nashville, TN

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In Nashville, our host is the lovely Rachael of Finding My Feet. Rachael blogs about life with her two young kiddos and has tons of great sewing tutorials. She even contributes to honesttonod.com. This is one of our all-time favorite tutorials by Rachael.  Rachael and her family were also featured as a Nod Real Family. You can follow her on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @rachaelmyers 

Los Altos, CA

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We have two hosts in Los Altos. First, local business owner, Mary Heffernan. Mary owns several shops in Los Altos, including the died-and-gone-to-heaven crafting shop, The Makerie. Mary and her family were also featured in a past catalog as a Nod Real Family.

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Mary’s co-host is Michaela of Michaela Nolle Designs. Michaela is an interior designer whose site is dedicated to her own interiors projects as well as DIYs and other lovely bits she finds around the web! You can follow her on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram @michaela_noelle 

Provo, UT

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And last, but certainly not least, we have co-hosts in Provo, as well. First up is Kirsten Kranson of http://6thstreetdesignschool.blogspot.com/. Kirsten is an interior designer; on her blogs she shares everything that’s inspiring her from interiors and party décor to products and DIY projects. Follow Kirsten on twitter, Instagram and Pinterest @kirstenkrason

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Along with Kirsten, the lovely ladies of Small Fry Blog are co-hosting. Small Fry is a children’s lifestyle blog that does just that, showcases everything that’s stylish for a life with children. On a daily basis Nicole, Emily and Jenna brings the best in kids fashion, travel, dining out, parties and more, always served up in a stylish package. You can’t help but have fun while on their site. You can follow these ladies on twitter, Instagram and Pinterest @smallfryblog

I think that sums it up, we can’t wait to kick off the festivities. And, we’d love to see how you’re using our holiday décor in your home this season. So, when you’re posting pics of your perfectly coifed tree to Instagram, don’t forget to tag us @thelandofnod.

Happy Holidays!
Danielle

Danielle is the Creative Director at Nod and an over-protective mother of two. She’s also completely obsessed with Pinterest, Twitter and her Kindle, but not necessarily in that order. Danielle loves to craft, sew and crochet, but all her supplies have a layer of dust on them about 6 ½-years-thick, wonder if it's just a coincidence that her oldest kiddo is 6 1/2 years old?

Things to Do – A Birthday Slumber Party

decorate For F's 8th birthday she requested a slumber party, so we talked about keeping it simple and only inviting a small, close group of her friends. And then, in a miracle wave of sisterly good cheer, F decided to let P invite some of her own friends, suggesting that this way they could all play together. So the group became larger than anticipated.

The morning of the big event F came down with a fever, so we rescheduled for the Monday night before election day (they had Tuesday off of school). That Monday was a little bittersweet because F's best friend was moving the next day to the Philippines with the Foreign Service (I love DC, but I hate how everyone leaves).

I picked all of the girls up from school on Monday and brought them to our "party room" in the backyard and so began the 18 hour celebration . . .

(I decorated the room with Land Of Nod's new Toot Sweet party decorations. When the kids were little I usually purchased low end supplies for parties (think Dollar Store), but as they grow older (and as we recycle the decorations from year to year) I've realized that a beautiful room can really make a party. The kids especially loved the cupcake carousel, every time I turned around someone had put the wheel in motion. I made the cupcakes (with love) using my ultra-fabulous recipe, my one and only "party" claim to fame). dance The girls started out by decorating Land Of Nod's Make a Mask princess kit (I find that starting birthday parties off with some sort of craft project tends to help everyone bond and feel relaxed around each other). Then the girls took over my spotify account (via bluetooth speakers and an ipad) and One Direction became LOUD!! If you're wondering how to make a 2nd grade girl dance, boy bands are the answer. I used butcher paper to create a few "autograph" walls where everyone could write birthday messages for F, which was a big success. candles Eventually F blew out her candles and we came inside for a movie and sleep. Okay, so that was wishful thinking. I meant a movie, then 2 tv shows, then a lot of whispering, and finally at 11:30 pm the chattering stopped. I must note that the cutest thing ever was watching little T slumber in his little sleeping bag while surrounded by 7 giggling girls. By midnight, I figured we were pretty much in the clear – just some of Dan's fantastic pancakes in the morning then the party would come to a close. What I did not plan on was seven wide awake girls (and one sleep deprived preschooler) ready for round 2 at 5:30 am (yes, you all read that right, 5:30!!!). morning

By 7:30 am they had already eaten breakfast and started asking for things to do. Luckily, LON also gave us two Artistic Collective Poster kits, which kept most of the kids entertained for another half-hour or so. And then, around 8 am, I broke out Suzy Ultman's Shrinky Dink Kit. Two kits contain 62 shrinky dinks and we managed to make each and every one. Luckily all of the dinks (is this the correct term?) come hole-punched and cut, which made it a great craft to take on with a group of children. Especially when sleep deprived. shrink And finally, around 10 am, the girls all left. And I drank a red bull. So goes birthday party season – one down, one to go (we host P's birthday party this weekend). (And a special thanks to Land of Nod, for gifting us the wonderful crafts and decorations!)

Post by Darcy : No Monsters in My Bed

 

The Best Doughnuts in Orange County

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I just recently discovered Sidecar Doughnuts & Coffee. They brought some doughnuts to a store event of ours, and the photos looked so good I had to taste it for myself. The maple bacon doughnut is to die for – pure heaven. This is where I discovered Stumptown Cold Brew Coffee. Try it. It’ll put hair on your chest (my grandpa used to say that to me).

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xo,

Michelle

By Michelle Kohanzo

Aside from being the Managing Director of The Land of Nod, mother to four kids (yes I said FOUR!) and a gourmet cook, Michelle is a retail junky. From Zara to Marc Jacobs, Target to Nordstroms, she doesn’t discriminate, there’s room in her heart and closet for them all. And the addiction doesn’t stop at fashion, she’s painted her dining room at least 5 times, and changes rugs like most women change their sheets. Retail isn’t therapy for Michelle, it’s more like oxygen.