Archives for November 2015

11.21.2015

Nursery In The Works

I love envisioning how Miss Vivian’s room is going to look when I am done with it. I watch enough HGTV to believe that I’m pretty much an interior designer and I can turn this plain-jane room into a serene nursery.  I’m channeling every bit of Christina (Flip or Flop) and Jojo (Fixer-Upper) into this room!

Just like every other woman on this planet, I sit on Pinterest and dream up exactly how I want my house decorated. Below are pictures I am using for inspiration:

 

 

I want the nursery to be light and feminine, yet cozy.

Here is the room before. (Wow, Henry looks so little!) It was a guest room/ Henry’s extra play room(Lucky little turd):

image

The room was a light blue before and we decided on “Mayfair White.” A very light mint color.

After:

***The wall color is most accurate in the picture of me holding the frame in front of my belly.

We ordered our crib sheet from Caden Lane and just ordered our crib online from Target! {Crib Sheet is ‘Pink Petunia’ and crib is ‘Jenny Lind’ in white}

Plans moving forward:

Because Vivian’s room has wood floors I want to find a large rug (10×8 give or take) I am in love with one at Restoration Hardware, but I am not willing to spend nearly 3k on a rug.  So, I am on the hunt for a similar rug. Anyone have any suggestions?

Wool Rug from RH

wool rug

I plan on replacing the light in her room with something more unique and I want to take advantage of the 9ft ceilings! I have found the rocker I want from Target and I have a 6-drawer dresser at my parents house I am sanding down, staining, and affixing new hardware on.  The dresser will also double as a changing table.

rocker

I have my eye on a few different crib skirts and decor for the walls. Because she is being named after my Grandmother, I do want to incorporate something special.  I found a pair of angel wings at Hobby Lobby and plan on “framing them” along with a picture of my Grandmother and a prayer.  I have some old frames I just need to paint them all the same shade of white. image

In the next few weeks I plan on working on her nursery, keep checking back for more updates! Thanks friends. As always, I would love some feedback or ideas!

11.16.2015

Tots: A Gift Guide

9 “Toys” your toddler is guaranteed to love:

With the holidays right around the corner, parents are already thinking, “What would be the perfect gift for Jimmy?” Don’t you worry-I’ve done all the research and all of these items below attract toddlers like a magnet!

 This post could be added to Ten Thoughts That Have Changed Since I Became a Mother.  Before Henry I had no idea that a child could be so excited to “play” with everyday items*** and actually prefer them to “normal” toys.

***Please note I am being facetious. Some of these items could be dangerous and harm your child.

image

Vacuum: It cannot be a toy vacuum, that’s no fun.  It must be intended for adults and have a lot of attachments that can be pulled off and played with as well. There is bonus fun involved if the child can access the dust/dirt storage area!

image

Coffee Cup or Mug (empty):  We’ve stuck to paper cups after a few too many mugs have been broken.  Starbucks didn’t know their cups were children’s toys too!

image

Broom And Dustpan:  Just like the vacuum, it cannot be child-sized.  It must be tall enough to hit stuff off the counters and knock anything out of the toddler’s footpath.

image

Lighter Fluid***: Even after ‘baby-proofing’ our home Henry still finds something he isn’t supposed to at least once a week.  What toddler doesn’t need to start a fire?

***DEREK FOLLOWED HIM INTO THE BREEZEWAY, TOOK THIS PICTURE, AND IMMEDIATELY MOVED THE LIGHTER FLUID TO A BABY FREE ZONE.  

image

Cat (Or Dog): Don’t let this picture fool you, 99% of the time Henry is trying to pick the cat up by her head, chasing her with his golf club, or trying to bite her.

image

Extension Cords: Or really any cords.  If it’s meant to be plugged-in it’s a great toy! If the cord was charging something that’s ideal. The toddler loves the minor warmth an iPhone charger holds moments after being unplugged.

image

Empty tube of wrapping paper/ toilet paper/ or paper towels:  If it wasn’t empty before the toddler gets to it, it will be.  It is multifunctional- you can throw it down the stairs, chew on it until it becomes soggy and a choking hazard, chase the cat, or hit your mom with it.

image

Boxes: In our case boxes with adult beverages in them.  Great for climbing on, pushing around, and sitting in.

image

Internet Modem: Its mounted on the way wall behind the drapes, so what would be more fun than tearing it down?  Its blinking lights are just calling a toddlers name. Mom, you didn’t have any internet aspirations today did you?

11.15.2015

Becoming A Mom, Again

From the instant I found out I was pregnant with Henry my heart was filled with joy.  I was never nervous to become a mom and had full confidence in myself. I always knew I wanted to be a mother and it was something I always dreamed of.  When I was little, I was OBSESSED with dolls and babies and ‘playing house.’(sorry siblings!) I was born to be a mother, it is my dream job and my childhood fantasy come true!

The doctor placed Henry on my chest my heart was complete.  Meeting my little boy for the first time was heart stopping and only a mother knows this feeling. Having a loving husband and our son, a piece of both of us- our lives were complete.  We knew we wanted more children, but our focus was solely on Henry.  Every breath he took, yawn, cry, whimper, and stretch we were there standing over him or holding him witnessing EVERYTHING.

imageimageimage

Fast forward 15 months, I am now 26 weeks pregnant (and a ball of emotional mush) with our sweet Vivian and I find myself thinking-

Will I make a good mother of two?

What if I miss her growing?

What if I can’t give enough attention to both children?

Will Henry feel bad when she gets attention?

Will I be able to manage?

How will I love both children enough?

I am embarrassed to admit I am more nervous for baby #2 to arrive then I was for Henry.  When out and about, I catch myself thinking, “How will I do this with two little ones?” It’s not just the everyday things I worry about either.  I am worried about giving birth. I had a great birth experience with Henry with only a few hiccups. So, in my little worrying brain I think, “I was lucky last time, things can’t possibly go as smoothly this time.” I even have irrational thoughts of “What if baby comes too quickly and I don’t make it to the hospital!?” Don’t judge me, I said they were irrational! I’m sure some reading this are probably thinking we were asking for it having our babies 18 months apart!  We get enough of that… “But, He Won’t Be Two Yet.”

When I was going from jr. high school to high school I was a nervous wreck.  My anxiety was full blown: the building was so big, the older kids were SO cool, I had to manage changing classes in a larger setting, find people to eat lunch with,  and mainly I didn’t want to make a fool of myself.  That’s when my grandpa told me some sage advice. “Molly, 99% of your worries will never happen!” I can still remember it clear as day, we were eating lunch at Applebee’s at a high top table.  And you know what?  My grandpa was right!  I made it through high school and look back and laugh at the thought of being nervous at all. My husband has a similar story about his anxiety, his anecdote is that someone dumber has gotten through it before. It’s crass, but it’s true. Whatever works, right?

image

I need to trust the good advice.  The same thing is true for becoming a mother for the second time. Most of my worries will never even come up and if they do I will adapt (that’s what us moms do best!) I was meant to be a mother and my dreams are coming true for the second time (how lucky am I?!) I have great support around me and trust in myself and mom abilities.

This is what I was meant to do.

11.12.2015

Have your Cake & Eat It Too

Feeling confident about my body image has always been a struggle of mine. Naturally, it only got worse when I was pregnant with Henry. As I’ve talked about before in Mom Bod: A Love/Hate Relationship this pregnancy I’ve been WAY more active which in return has boosted my confidence!

As many of you know, I nursed for 13 months. While nursing Henry I tried MANY different nursing bras and tanks. Some of them were okay, but nothing that made me feel special and especially not sexy. When you’re covered in baby vomit, your boobs are leaking milk, and your body hasn’t returned to what you thought it would – it’s hard to feel good about yourself.

image

I’m trying to get ahead of the game this time and try out some maternity/nursing bras now. That’s how I came across Cake Maternity. If you haven’t heard of them check out their website (or hit up Nordstrom’s where they are now sold!) You will not be disappointed.

image

Every last stitch on their bra and panties is beautiful, but it’s not just the beauty it’s the comfort. Their bra is supportive, with three hooks in the back and an extra wide strap. They do all of this without looking like a cheap “grandma” bra. The strap has a strip of sexy black velvet with tiny little ruffle along the edge. It’s lace is delicate and sexy and meets with a perfect tiny velvet bow in the center. The panties are low rise and perfect for my growing bump, and have the same attention to detail as the bra.

To say it in a PG term, it’s been husband approved. The best part is you lose none of the look and feel because it’s specialized for maternity/ nursing.

image

Overall, it’s a win/win situation. I get to feel sexy and comfortable and it’s still functional! I honestly didn’t know this even existed. I always thought, “Pain is beauty.” (thanks,Mom) Well, Cake Maternity has happily proven me wrong.

image

11.11.2015

NAÏF- A Love Story

image

When I was pregnant with Henry, my sister Mallory gave me a gift of getting monthly Citrus Lane boxes for a year. Anyone who is expecting and hasn’t tried Citrus Lane should.

1. It’s always fun to get “good mail.”

2. You never know what baby products you might discover and fall in love with!

In this case, I’m going to talk about #2.

In every box you get one to three “bigger” items and a few samples of baby products from butt-paste to lotions! Most of the samples I tossed into Henry’s top drawer in a small bin next to his diapers and wipes. Eventually they would be used as odds and ends or tossed into the diaper bag as little back ups! Then in one box there was a small sample size bottle that said “NAÏF Quality Baby Care” and at the bottom read, “Softening Body Lotion with natural cottonseed oil” I’m not sure why this particular bottle caught my eye.

Luckily it did, and after our bath time that night I lathered Henry with the lotion. The scent was AMAZING! I can’t even do justice describing the perfect light “baby” scent. It didn’t leave a greasy/oily layer on his skin, it was silky and smooth like satin. I was in love! I used the rest of the bottle sparingly and this is no joke… I still have the small 0.5oz (empty) bottle in a bin on my nightstand.

image

We now have the full line of NAÏF Baby Care products and could not be more pleased. We will never go back to anything else. You can tell they care about their customers, and that’s why their products are free of mineral oil, parabens, phenoxyethanol, SLS/ SLES and any other harsh chemicals.

image

Below I will list a little about each of these terrible ingredients found in many daily baby products.

Mineral Oil: aggravates acne and negatively impacts skin, causing premature aging.

Parabens: may harm overall human health and contribute to the growth of cancerous tumors. Why have it? This chemical keeps products from spoiling.

Phenoxyethanol: Found to be a significant contact allergen and also reproductive toxin.

SLS/ SLES: SLS irritates eyes and skin it’s added to products to get that sudsy appeal. SLES is also an irritant of skin and eyes, but on top of that it’s a known carcinogen!

After doing my research, I was disgusted with what I had been putting on my baby’s skin and had been soaking into his body! Not only are NAÏF Baby Care Products free of all of those ingredients they also list every ingredient on their bottles and their website describes their purpose and where it came from.

NAÏF offers a line of six different baby care products, here is my opinion on each:

image

Nourishing Shampoo: This leaves Henry’s hair silky smooth- not greasy. His scalp is never dry or irritated.

image

Cleansing Wash Gel: In my opinion this is the base of cleaning, not stripping, Henry’s skin of its oils. It doesn’t irritate his eyes if it gets in them, which you all know is basically every time we bathe!

image

Softening Body Lotion: This is where all my love started! It is hands-down the best lotion I’ve ever tried! Henry has super sensitive skin and this does wonders for him. With all their products, no dry skin or irritation!

image

Milky Bath Oil: Don’t let the word ‘oil’ freak you out. This is the perfect combination of having silky water, but not having a greasy film left over. I may or may not sneak it into my baths too! 😉

image

Soothing Baby Oil: Again, this isn’t your typical ‘oil’ it leaves no greasy residue. We love to use it as a massage oil to help calm and relax Henry to get him ready for bed.

image

Nurturing Cream: This is magic in a bottle! During our harsh winters when patches of dry skin show up-this works wonders! It’s also great for his sensitive skin on his little face. I use it on mine as well!

Obviously, I highly recommend NAÏF Baby Care products as they are safe and work wonders. No one should ever have to second guess what they are putting on their baby and with NAÏF products I don’t have to! Even if it’s not with NAÏF, please, do yourself and your little ones a favor and check into the ingredients of your care products. NAÏF

11.05.2015

Maternity Must Haves

Some are fun, some are not-so-fun. But, these are the items that I consider ‘must haves’ during pregnancy.

imageOver-the-belly maternity pants- I know before I had kids I thought they looked grandma “ish”. Now, I am a huge fan! They are comfortable, stylish, and keep everything from hanging out (and no one wants that!). My personal favorite are from Gap.

image

Tums- Oh, the heartburn… Not such a fun one but, these help with some relief. Definitely a harsh reality of pregnancy, perpetual heartburn.

image

Bath bombs- or a favorite shower gel. I love taking a long bath in the jacuzzi tub and relaxing. In a pinch- a nice shower will do!

image

Leggings- I couldn’t live without them. But ladies, I’m not talking about leggings with my bum hanging out. Unless you are 16, I am of the opinion that when wearing leggings you should be wearing something that covers that tush; tunic, dress, etc.

image

Bottled water- I am like a camel while pregnant. I love having water on hand for on-the-go.

image

Coconut oil- I use it as lotion on my belly! It feels good and makes me think it’s helping prevent (more) stretch marks.


image

Snacks- Unfortunately, I’m not talking about donuts and cake.  I cannot keep those items around the house because I have no self control. I like to keep hard-boiled eggs, carrots, hummus, grapes, and other various fruits and veggies on hand to keep me from TOO many sweet treats!

image

Supportive bras and comfortable undies- My ‘girls’ have been through a pregnancy, 13 months of breast feeding, and now another pregnancy… They need some help! Comfortable undies does NOT mean granny panties. There are great cute and sexy comfortable “boy shorts” and other styles. The perfect outfit starts with your undergarments.

image

A doting husband- This is the key to making it through pregnancy. I know it’s so cheesy. Someone to complain to, give me back massages, and make those midnight runs for a sudden craving. Most of all to support me and tell me I’m beautiful, even if I look like I just got run over by a muddy semi-truck.

11.03.2015

Papaya, Grapefruit, Cantaloupe

image

I’m a little bit behind so this sums up weeks 22, 23 & 24. I’ve been feeling guilty lately about not documenting this pregnancy as much as I did when I was pregnant with Henry. With Henry, I counted the weeks that went by and couldn’t wait to make my weekly chalkboard! This time around the weeks are flying by and I don’t even realize it! I just had my 25 week check up and the next time I go in I will already be in my third trimester doing my glucose test (yuck!) I know I’ve said it a million times, but this pregnancy is really flying by! I’m thinking the chasing of my little toddler has something to do with it. As far as weeks 22, 23 & 24 go, not too much has changed. Baby girl is already about 14 inches and 2 pounds! Hey, at least baby is some of all this weight now! 😉

I’m starting to get heartburn all the time-especially at night. However, sleep is still good so I cannot complain too much. Compared to sleeping for five hours a night this has been surreal. I have been more tired lately, not sure if this is due to the pregnancy or the aforementioned chasing around Henry (probably a bit of both).

Lately, I’ve been trying to sneak in a nap when Henry naps, but I always feel guilty that I could be doing something productive. I’ve been craving Starbursts the past week like CRAZY and yesterday at Target I finally gave in and got a bag (it may or may not already be half gone.) Various sweets have been my weakness this pregnancy!

I know there is no truth to old wives tales, but almost all of them fall on “girl” for me…Surely that means something… I can see my baby girl moving from the outside of my belly now and she is constantly on the move! I love it! Truly it’s such a great reminder on how pregnancy is a miracle! I can’t believe I’m just a few short weeks away from starting the third trimester! I’ll try to do a better job of weekly updates, next week… Cauliflower (25 weeks!)

11.01.2015

The Beauty Of Fall

image

I know we all (well, most of us!) love the changing trees, apple orchard, pumpkin picking, fall boots and a sweater time-of-the-year. I’m with the majority of people and have a love for Fall. It means I’m no longer getting boob sweat and frizzy hair from humidity (don’t judge.)

Best of all, we end up spending a lot of quality family time doing cheesy family traditions that don’t cost much in comparison to other holidays!

Going to the pumpkin patch and seeing my Henry run around and discover the pumpkins, vines, and dirt was priceless. He could’ve spent all day trying to “help” pull the wagon around and running through the patch. They had cut-outs of Halloween monsters and fall scenery to poke his head through and we even took a picture of him next to the same cut-out I had my picture taken next to as a child! It’s such a cheesy sentimental mom moment: “How tall this fall at Lendt’s Pumpkins?” And he reaches just under the three foot mark before running off again.

After picking out two pumpkins and a couple of acorn squash for mama to eat, the whole pumpkin patch costs us under $15. My husband and I nearly spend this going to Starbucks! Speaking of priceless, carving pumpkins, eating sweet fall treats, and watching all sorts of hockey is right there too! I try to take in all of these moments knowing that the stress of the holidays is right around the corner. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the holidays as much as any other Martha Stuart wannabe. But, hauling a family from here to there to Timbuktu and back to please both sides of our families can be stressful (we have some regular complainers…) Not to mention preparing a dish to bring to each house and making sure it has enough time to heat in the oven. And that’s not it: “Did we remember my Aunt Rose’s gift?” Making sure the vehicle is packed with the right gifts for the right house and the right people.

Just thinking about it makes me appreciate the fall activities with no stress. But hey, I can’t wait for the Starbucks Peppermint Mocha to come back!

Our Adventures: