Swap, Sweet Progress, Things I Love, Uncategorized

It’s the Great Fall Box Swap Sign Up, Bloggers! #SPBoxSwap

It’s Fall Y’all!!

Fall box swapAnd it’s been too long since our last seasonal box swap. Heck, it’s been too long since my last real post. My life has been a bag of jelly beans- all mixed up, colorful, with a few yucky flavors, but nonetheless full. I plan on sharing it all, but honestly I haven’t had time to sit still and let it out. Along with that: the world, people, the world! Things have been crazy, right? What the world needs now is love sweet love… happy mail works too. 🙂 Or at least that’s our hope, to bring some smiles, happiness and possibly new friendships into this world.

We missed summer, but we’re ready to welcome in FALL!!


Box Swap

It’s time for another Sweet Progress Fall Box Swap!!

What is Sweet Progress Box Swap?

My lovely friend Ashley and I created Sweet Progress Box Swap to give bloggers a way to connect via good ol’ mail. The two of us swoon over happy mail, so naturally this collab is a match made in heaven!  It’s so much fun to see relationships build and to see all the goodies everyone receives.


Here’s what you’ll need to do:

  • Fill out the form below
  • We’ll email you the button to display on your blog once we receive your signup
  • Place the button on your blog sidebar or in a post. Please send us the link when you do.
  • Send your box out before October 24 Make sure to send your partner the tracking number for their box.
  • Linkup with us on October 31 to share your #SPBoxSwap reveal

Additional Information:

  • This swap is open to the U.S. and Canada. We would love for you to spread the word, we would like multiple swappers in Canada.
  • Partner info will be sent to your inbox on October 18.
  • We will have a partner spreadsheet, it’s up to you to contact your partner for more information and address info. This is a great time to get to know your partner. 🙂 Ice breaker?
  • You must confirm that you have received your partner’s info.
  • We ask that you spend $20 before shipping.
  • If you share on social media don’t forget to tag us and use the hashtag: @Akaleistar @Mrs_AOK #SPBoxSwap
  • If you are not able to send out your package on time please let Ashley, your partner, and I know in advance. No flaking allowed.

It's the great fall box swap, bloggers! Come join the fall fun and signup to swap happy {fall} mail with other bloggers. :)

Are you in? Sign up here:

Need some ideas?

  • Coffee mug
  • Nail polish
  • Notebooks or journals
  • Tea
  • Local goodies
  • Book
  • Candy
  • Fall Magazine
  • Scarf

Still Need More Ideas? Check out these past box swaps!

Why and how it all began #SPBoxSwap 



The Sweet Progress Box Swap is open to bloggers 18 and over. Once we put you in contact with your swap partner we CANNOT be held responsible for the outcome of any contact of any kind made between you and your partner. We also cannot be held responsible in the event your partner does not respond. By submitting the form, you are confirming that you have read this disclaimer. We do hope you use common sense and if you decide you feel uncomfortable, let us know. We wouldn’t want you to do anything you don’t feel 100% about. Happy swapping!

The Fall, Back to Blogging, Birthday Giveaway! I'm so happy for: the start of fall, getting back to blogging after my hiatus, and my birthday, so I decided we should celebrate with a fall giveaway!! No need to follow, like, heart, and hula hoop just take a guess . :)

The Happy Fall, Back To Blogging, Birthday GIVEAWAY!!

It’s been waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too long! I’m excited to finally get back to blogging, and when I say excited… (pause here for overly eager animated voice) I mean throwing candy corn in the air excited. 🙂 Because I don’t eat candy corn, but I love it. {Weird?}  Anyway, some of you may have followed my journey from South Carolina to Washington state on Instagram, I sort of turned my IG into a microblog. If you did follow along THANK YOU! If you have not been following along you’ve been missing out!!

That’s okay because I’ve put together a recap of my crazy last few months that will go live next week. (The first installment of Across The Country with Three Kids, a Dog, and Our Sanity is kind of a tear jerker, bring Kleenex.) I had ZERO intention of taking a two month break from blogging. Honestly, I didn’t completely take a full-on break because I did post every Sunday (eh hem Mommy Monday Blog Hop) plus I still was a part of #MotherhoodChat on Twitter. (Shameless plug: this Sunday will discuss bullying with Bowling To End Bullying, come join us!)

The Happy Fall, Back to Blogging, Birthday Giveaway!!! I'm so happy for the start of fall, back to blogging after my hiatus, and my birthday, so I decided we should celebrate in true fall fashion!!  No need to follow, like, heart, and hula hoop just take a guess . :)

So, in honor of getting back to blogging, my favorite season, and my birthday (on Wednesday 😉 ) I’m sharing a giveaway! I did the same type of giveaway last year and it was tons of fun. I think people enjoyed it because it took us back to our childhood class parties where we would lean as close as we could to the jar without touching to take a guess. I encourage you to lean up to your computer screens and get to guessing! No likes, follows, hearts, or hula hoops needed just a simple guess will do ya 😉 Leave your guesses below in the comments and if you would like to share that would be great too! I have the answer taped to the bottom of the jar (my team counted and wrote down the number). I will reveal the number & winner on October 2, next Friday. I cannot wait to see your guesses!!

Happy Fall Y’all!!

The Happy Fall, Back to Blogging, Birthday Giveaway!


(This giveaway is open to the US and Canada only)

Getting to know Me, Giveaway, holiday

Ten Things I’m Thankful For {Fall Edition} Five Senses, and Surprises

Soooooo, yesterday I never posted my 10 Things I’m Thankful For post because LIFE. I’ve been trying to stick to the Back To Blogging Challenge, but yesterday I fell off.  I started the post but never finished it…. does that mean I lost?  Well, I don’t give up, therefore this post is a combined post 10 Things I’m Thankful For and Five Senses of Fall… that’s right a twofer!

Fall Edition: 10 Things I'm Thankful For

1) Family. I’m always, always, always thankful for my family.  Fall time for our family means plenty of family time doing various fall activities.  After Wednesday’s post, in which I sang the I-Miss-Fall-Time-In-Illinois-Blues, I’m hopeful we’ll find some fall fun here  in South Carolina.

My Halloween {Family}

The Fab Five

2) Pumpkin everything!  I don’t care what the pumpkin haters say, I love pumpkin, I loved pumpkin before it was ‘cool’. I love pumpkin seeds, waffles, pancakes, soup, scones, muffins, and of course… Pumpkin Spice Lattes. The taste of pumpkin in my opinion is the official taste of fall 🙂


My Favorite Pumpkin Patch

I know, I know, here comes the eye roll from the PSL haters, look, I know what’s not in a PSL and what is.  I’m a grown woman, who makes grown decisions, me drinking a PSL sporadically throughout fall is a treat.  I treat myself.  I think I deserve a treat every now and then, and FYI I’m the OG of the PSLGangstas 🙂 I have to drink a few PSLs this fall or else…. I’ll be drunk-out. As much as I like to eat and drink my pumpkins, I love to decorate with them.  I just love pumpkins.

Fun Fact: When starting my blog/Etsy Shop I was considering using pumpkin in the title.




3) Cool crisp days, I love when the air is crisp for SO many reasons!  When there’s a nice chill in the air that first cup of coffee is the best, right?  Going for a jog in the fresh morning air is the best during the fall.  I love how the breeze fills my lungs, and the pavement keeps me wanting more.  Who doesn’t enjoy the feeling of the cool crisp fall morning and the sound of crunching leaves under their feet?  The change in the air means layering too.

Fall Pavement

4) Layering.  I love fall fashion. I am NOT much of a fashionista, I’m just a girl who enjoys pretty things, and has a far more stylish Pinterest closet than real life closet {womp womp}.  Leggings, sweaters, boots, scarves, and Halloween socks.  I have a growing collection of scarves and a crazy collection of Halloween socks.  Actually, I have quite a fun collection of colorful and seasonal socks, but I by far have more Halloween socks 🙂

The Furbaby & I {my writing companion}


5) This may be weird to be thankful for, but I am…. fall scented candles!  I love ’em!  I’m happy the shelves are overflowing with the scent of fall right now.  This winter when fall candles went on clearance, I went on a binge.  I don’t care about seasonal suggestions cinnamon, pumpkin, apples, and autumn leaves always smell good year round, to me 🙂

My son: “Mommy, you’re a candle lady.. huh?”  I think this boy is going places, he knows the way to his Mama’s heart, because after he said that he said get the candle 🙂

6) HALLOWEEN!  I LOVE Halloween!  I love to decorate for Halloween, all the Halloween shows/cartoons, and of course Halloween allows me to get creative 🙂  I’m happy to make Halloween memories with my babies each year.

Fairy Tutu

Made that Baby PSY Halloween


Bones and dirt pretzels

7) Food.  Yes, that’s right fall food.  I love to get in the kitchen and make chili, try my hand at pumpkin recipes I spy on Pinterest, and my kids’ favorite slow cooker apple sauce. The smell that permeates your home when you make applesauce using your slow cooker is the most glorious aroma!

Slow Cooker Applesauce

8) Thanksgiving. Sometimes, I feel bad for Thanksgiving it’s sandwiched in between Halloween and Christmas, people are getting over their sugar high and stressing over Christmas.  Thanksgiving in my house is usually filled with my family all in the kitchen making a big dinner and pies, as well as making thankful leaves.  It’s warm, cozy, and yummy.  Last Thanksgiving we {my family and I} didn’t really get to celebrate a traditional Thanksgiving, we were moving.  We drove into South Carolina on Thanksgiving night, we ended up ordering in, we had Waffle House 😀



9) Snuggles.  Fall is a snuggly season, don’t you think?  I like to snuggle on the couch with my family, and enjoy fall television.

Snuggly Puggy

10)  Although, I haven’t been happy with all the bad news coming from NFL lately, I’m a sucker for football.  Here at the AOK house we like to make football snacks and  watch the games as we track our Fantasy Football scores 🙂

Friday Night Lights

What are some of your fall favorites?  

I shared some of mine, but I want to really share some of mine with one of you.  Let’s play a fall game shall we?  In celebration of my birthday and fall!

Win my fall favorites!

CandyCorn Guess


CandyCorn 309

Annnd the winner is……


Shelly from DIY Mama

Her guess: 313!!

Here are the rules:

This game will run until the October 8th

Open to the United States only… I’m sorry.

Leave your guess in the comments below, with your email address.

Whoever guesses correctly or the closest first will win.

I will email the winner.

What do you win?  Some of my favorite things… Scarf,  Socks, Candle, Starbucks Gift Card and maybe a little something extra.