Fun on the Farm!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Yesterday, my mom, sister, and I took Baylee for her first adventure on the farm! She's recently very obsessed with animals, and I had heard about a cute little farm thats pretty local to where we live so I had to take her. It was absolutely adorable, and had it not been so hot we could have stayed there all day. I definitely plan on taking her back in a couple of months once the weather cools off, and hopefully to pick out a pumpkin for Halloween! 

We took Baylee to the petting zoo first. They had pigs, geese, and goats, and I think she was a little overwhelmed with the loud honking geese and snorting pigs! She warmed up once we went inside the pen though, and found a baby goat just her size. (Side note: I'm totally spoiled with the Disneyland goats who just lay around and don't eat your clothes. Ha.)

We saw the horses and cows next, and Baylee made friends with a pretty pony named Abigail. Apparently a pony eating hay is absolutely hilarious!

The big, brown cow was also a big hit with for sure. We got a picture of Baylee and her Nonna, but the cow didn't get the memo to smile. ;) 

And, of course, what's an farm adventure without her Mimi?! :)

The farm was definitely Baylee's element...outside surrounded by animals! This Mama is lovin' her little country girl! I can't wait until she fits in her boots!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Until next time...XoXoXo!

Happy List!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

If it's not already apparent, one of the things I love most in life is a good list. I make them for everything from grocery shopping to blog post ideas. I even have a list of baby names for any future children that Brian and I may have! I love doing my Friday Favorites posts, but sometimes it's nice to be a little more random. Here's a list of things that I'm currently obsessed with. :)

1. Baylee walking!

Kiddo finally got the hang of it, and I am so proud of her! She has been toddling around the house like a pro for the past two days. It's pretty much the cutest thing ever.

2. Mini cookie cutters.

They make everything Baylee sized and are so much cuter than just cutting things up! I need to invest in this set of shapes and also these letter cookie cutters!

 3. Which Which

This place puts Subway to shame! If you haven't tried a Which Which sandwich yet, click on this link and see if there is one near you. They're probably the most amazing hoagies I've ever had and everything is super fresh. I'm drooling.

4. Baby Tights

I am so excited to put Baylee in some tights once the weather cools off! I got her some white cotton ones, but I'm looking at getting her these cable knit ones as well. They're perfect under dresses, or even layered under a pair of shorts! it fall yet?

5. September

Did I tell you that I am over summer? September starts in only 6 days and the official first day of Fall is in 28 days...not that I'm counting.

 Um, the Pumpkin Spice Queen NEEDS it! ;)

7. Refurbishing

Brian and I just refurbished my old toy box for Baylee and I am soooo happy with how it turned out! It makes me want to go to yard sales and refurbish every piece of furniture that I can get my hands on...but really who has time for that? We sanded and varnished the wood in a darker color and painted the smooth sides in chalkboard paint so she can write all over it when she's older. My attempt to dissuade her from drawing on the walls, which may backfire. We shall see!

Until next time! XoXoXo

Today With Bay!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

 A lot of people ask me what my day is like as a stay at home mom, so I thought it might be fun to show you our day in pictures every so often. It will be interesting to see how our day changes as Baylee gets older and as the seasons change. Right now, we are still having a pretty bad heat wave here in the desert, so we are mostly staying inside with the A/C on! Anyway, enjoy reading about our day! :)

8:01 My little bird wakes up.

 She sleeps pretty solid from 8:00-8:00. I'm usually up by 6:30-7:00 that way I can shower, catch up on social media, and just have some quiet time before the toddler tornado wakes up.

8:10 Breakfast for Mommy.

 I usually let Baylee play in her crib for 15 to 20 minutes after she wakes up. It gives me a chance to feed the dogs and myself, and she's perfectly content rolling around and tossing her pacifiers in the crevice between her crib and the wall. Today is day #2 of my diet. Protein shake for breakfast. Yay.

8:20 Baylee plays and watches a Baby Einstein DVD.

 We snuggle on the couch for a bit, and when she's over the hugs and kisses she goes and plays with her toys. This gives me a chance to wash her bottles and make some breakfast for her.

9:00 Breakfast for Baylee.

 Today we had strawberry banana smoothies and peanut butter on wheat toast. Yum! I'm recently obsessed with the Jamba smoothie bags. They taste soooo good and are the perfect portion for both of us to share.

9:30 More playtime.

 Baylee plays while I do my makeup and get ready for the day.

10:00 Target run!

 It really is negotiable wether Target or Disneyland is the happiest place on Earth! ;)

11:00 Bottle and quiet time.

 A melt down as I put groceries away signaled time for a bottle and some calm down time. I swear I will wean her to a cup one day.

11:30 Nap time 

 Yay for naps! This meant snack time for Mommy and some reading. I also managed to get some laundry and a workout in as well as 20 minutes of shut eye for myself. Win.

2:15 Baylee awake, so I vacuum before I get her out of her crib.

 Wishing I had a playroom so my living room doesn't have to look like a daycare anymore. *sigh* One day...

2:30 Lunch time!

 Turkey, quesadilla squares, green beans, and blueberries. (I had another protein shake. Meh.)

3:00 More playtime and a dance party. 

 We love to put on music while we play and dance around the living room!

3:08 Lou Lou-back-riding.

 We own the world's most tolerant dog.

3:45 Coloring 

 We got new crayons at Target, so we had to try them out. My little artist!

4:30 Swinging and bubbles outside.

 5:00 Books in Baylee's room.

5:30 Make Dinner.

 Brian is usually home by now to keep the munchkin entertained while I make dinner, but today he had an appointment after work. This meant a utensil party on the kitchen floor! Woot!

6:00 Dinner time.

 Whole wheat pasta and meat sauce! I also made us a side of broccoli because it's Baylee's favorite veggie right now.

6:30 Bath time!

 7:00 Movie and calm down time.

 We watched The Princess and the Frog for the bajillionth time. It's the only movie that keeps her attention for practically the whole time.

8:00 Night bottle and bed time.

She was exhausted and went right to sleep...and now I miss her little face!

 Until next time...XoXoXo!

Friday Favorites: Falling for Fall

Friday, August 14, 2015

It's 102 degrees at my house right now, and it really has me dreaming of Fall! Thank goodness it's right around the corner. Fall is my absolute favorite season. The weather is perfect, pumpkin everything is amazing, and it's a nice little calm before the storm of the Christmas Season. Here are some of my favorite things that I'm looking forward to getting or making once Fall comes around!

1. Pumpkin Spice Latte

Anyone who knows me knows I am absolutely obsessed with pumpkin everything! This started when I was very young and my Nanny (Grandma) used to make me an entire pumpkin pie every year for Thanksgiving that was mine and mine alone. Bless her! The pumpkin love stayed my whole life, and now I look forward to this perfect fall beverage every year. It also tastes great iced or as a frap! If you're saving your pennies for Christmas, though, there's a copycat recipe here.

2. Pumpkin Waffles

Last year I made pumpkin french toast and it was incredible, so when I got a belgian waffle maker for Christmas, I knew this Fall would be time to try out some pumpkin waffles! The recipe I plan on using is here; can't wait to see how they turn out!

3. American Eagle Jeans

I've been buying American Eagle jeans since high school because I am vertically challenged and they are the only company who makes a "short" size that actually looks flattering on my stature. I am so excited to finally not have to wear shorts anymore and to pull on some comfy jeans. My favorite styles this year are here and here

4. Victoria's Secret Sweatshirts

They're so expensive, but so worth every penny. I have yet to find comfier sweatshirts that stay nice for years and years. I basically live in my VS sweatshirts and yoga pants all Fall and Winter. So far, I like this one and this one.

5. Halloween Pajamas

Of course, this list would not be complete without something for the kiddo! These Halloween pajamas from Carter's are crazy adorable and they glow in the dark. Insert heart eyes here! I can't wait to snatch some up for Baylee to wear all October long. :)

Hopefully California weather gets the memo that Fall begins in a month. Until then, it's air conditioning and swimming for the win!

Until next time...XoXoXo

15 Things I Wish I Had Known About: Baby's First Year

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

I've been a Mama for almost 13 months now, and while I still have a lot to learn, I definitely feel like having the first year under my belt has helped me build some major parenting confidence. Looking back, here are 15 things I wish I had known about the first year.

1. Just when you get in a routine, it changes. Baylee's first three months, I kinda just went with the flow, but once she started napping regularly in her crib, we got on a schedule and it was so nice. Then came the sleep regression, then the teething, then the nap fighting, then the 5:30 am wake up name it. Basically, I've learned to not get used to any kind of schedule at all. We have a loose flexible one now that works for us, and I'm sure that will be changing over the next few months too. It's all part of baby's growth.

2. Teething sucks, but it's overly dramatized. Maybe it's just me, but I really feel like teething has never been unbearable. Sure she's been in some pain, and we definitely had a few rough nights when she was cutting 4 top teeth at once, but nothing that stopped her. I never had to drug her up all day or constantly keep cold teethers in her mouth. We would have a little tylenol before bed, but that was it. Other than that she pretty much trooped through. :) We haven't cut any molars yet though, so I may be sticking my foot in my mouth. 

3. You shouldn't feel guilty for using formula. When Baylee started rejecting my breast milk at 6 months old I was distraught. I had it in my head that I was going to make it to at least 9 months, if not a year, but she wasn't having it. I started giving her Enfamil Gentlease, and it was love at first suck for her. It took me some time to really come around and stop feeling so guilty that I wasn't giving her "the best", but I did some research and found out how far along formula has really is healthy and the only thing it lacks in comparison to breast milk is antibodies. I'll definitely breast feed as long as I can with future babies, but now I know that making the transition to formula doesn't have to be gut wrenching. (However, it's crap for the wallet and OMG weaning sucks!)

4. Combo pureed food with Baby Led Weaning. After reading about BLW I was soooo interested in trying it out. I was going to go 100% BLW, but Baylee's doctor advised me that she needed more substance in her diet, so we ended up doing both. In the end, I only had to spoon feed her for about a month and a half. By 6 months old she was refusing to let me feed her and wanting to completely feed herself little chunks of food and has never looked back. Now she is even learning how to use a fork and a spoon on her own! I love the way BLW made her so independent and so willing to try new things. (I'm thinking about doing a future post on exactly how we did this and menu items!)

5. Target brand diapers for life! Here's my rule of thumb now...newborns get the Pampers because they're the only ones that actually fit and prevent the most blow outs. Size 1 gets Pampers or Huggies...both do the job. By the time size 2 comes around, I'm all about Target brand! They're so much cheaper, and we have never had a blow out. For some reason, we had a lot of blow outs with the Target size 1, but size 2 and up is golden.

6. Rotate toys often. It never occurred to me that an 8 month old baby can get bored, but they do! I started keeping some of Baylee's toys in her room and some in the front room, and I rotate them out every couple of weeks. It keeps her entertained, and I feel like sometimes she thinks she got new toys!

7. Don't push milestones. Baylee has been pretty ahead of the game or right on target when it comes to milestones, so the fact that she still isn't completely walking yet has me occasionally frustrated. Carrying around a 23 pounder all the time is no joke. The more I push her to practice though, the more she flops to her knees and wants to just crawl. I'm learning to just back off and let her do her thing. The days I don't bug her about it, she toddles around the house just fine. I know before long she'll be running and driving me crazy. :)

8. Sleep training isn't necessary. I really struggled with the idea of sleep training. It's just my opinion, but Cry It Out just isn't my cup of tea. So, yes, I dealt with many sleepless nights well in to her first birthday, but did anyone really become a parent thinking that they were always going to sleep the same as they used to? That's hilarious. ;) So, I have just let Baylee do her own thing and it works for us. She still wakes up around 4:30 for a night bottle, but she sleeps in until 8:30. What more could I ask for? And I know it won't last forever...eventually she will drop that night bottle and start waking up at 6:00 am again, but I hope she takes her time!

9. Don't compare your baby to other babies. All babies develop at their own pace, and the time frame is so very broad for different milestones. Baylee can't walk, but she sure can talk up a storm and say a lot more words than what is considered "normal". Revel in your baby's accomplishments and don't worry so much about what they can't do. 

10. TV is not the enemy. I don't care what the experts say...we watch TV in our house. I make sure it's age appropriate and that she can learn from it, and we don't watch it all day, every day, of course. Baylee's favorites are Baby Einstein, Little Ensteins, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. We watch a lot of Disney movies too, because she loves the music! She has a strange attachment to The Princess and the Frog (no clue why!) so we watch that one a lot. As a Stay At Home Mom, having the noise in the background sometimes really helps.

11. Strive to survive...not for perfection. We have all been there...the house didn't get cleaned, baby is still in PJs (that have traces of breakfast and lunch on them), and you realize hubby will be home in minutes, and you haven't even begun to think about dinner. It's okay. At the end of the day, I remind myself that raising a child is tough work and sometimes we are just in survival mode. Tomorrow will be better. :)

12. Nap time is important for mommy and baby. My sisters have lovingly referred to me as the Nap Nazi before, and I can't deny it. Nap time is what keeps me from pulling my hair out some days. Unless we are out and about, I've always tried to make sure that Baylee gets a solid nap or two every day. It helps her sleep better at night, and makes her an all around nicer kid. Plus, nap time is "me" time when I can blog, clean, or just take a nap myself. Don't wake my baby during her will get cut. ;) 

13. Have jammie days. This doesn't really need explanation, but some of my favorite days with Baylee have been when we stayed in our jammies and played at home all day. They turn out to be precious times when we really get to bond and have fun together!

14. Let your baby have experiences. I'm not the "keep the baby inside" type of mom. Baylee's first time at Disneyland was when she was only 5 weeks old and I don't regret it one bit. You might think your baby is getting nothing out of it, but all the colors and stimuli really make for a well rounded child.  Baylee loves to go new places and see new things, and I really think it's because she's been doing that her whole life.

15. Cherish every minute, it goes by too fast. I find myself seeing little babies, like my niece, and going "Oh, I miss that age!" and you really will. Every day is more precious than the last, and you just don't realize how fast they grow and change in just 12 months! :)

Until next time...XoXoXo

9-12 Month Must Haves!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

It was so hard to narrow down this list of "must haves", because there are so many awesome things for babies at this age. I think these are pretty much the ones we use the most, though, so here are my 9-12 month must haves! :)

 We have a lot of different kinds of sippy cups that we love, but so far this one is Baylee's favorite. She stays true to her Nuk brand! ;) I don't know if it's because it reminds her of her bottles or what, but whenever I give her water in this one she guzzles it down. We will be transitioning to milk in her sippy very soon, but right now her bottles are still her jam.

We got this as a gift from my grandparents, and I love it! I fill it with Cheerios or other snacks and throw it in the diaper bag and we are good to go. It's great because I can hand it to Baylee to let her feed herself in the car or while we are strolling around Target. She figured out how to manipulate it so that she can shake some out, but for the most part nothing really spills out unless you use force. 

These are Baylee's favorite snack. They're not the healthiest ever, but they're definitely better than the alternative! They come in a few different flavors and are pretty tasty. I love that they're not very messy either, so just a quick hand wipe is all out need for clean up on the go.

Now that Baylee has 6 teeth, I knew it was time to start taking care of those pearly whites! This oral care kit is great...I give her the toothbrush to practice with, and I use the fingertip brush to really get them squeaky clean. We also use the Aquafresh training toothpaste. It's safe to swallow and come in a strawberry banana flavor, which she loves. 

Baylee got this toy for her birthday and she is absolutely obsessed with it. It has a ton of buttons and slides and makes the cutest sounds. She can sit and play with it quietly for a good ten minutes which is like forever for a 1 year old! Her favorite part is that it has a light switch that turns the light in the house on and off because she just learned how to work the light switches at home.

As I've mentioned before, books are Baylee's favorite things in the world. We have reached the age of tearing the pages though, so board books are our friend. These Dr. Seuss ones are tiny and adorable, but there are many other books that come in the board book form as well.

They're kind of an unconventional "must have", but they're something we use every single day. Cutting up Baylee's food in to bite sized pieces was getting tedious, so I started using my kitchen shears and it has made my life so much better. I can cut up her food quickly and not have to worry about any choking from pieces that are a little too big for her. If you get nothing else off this list get're welcome! ;)

Until next time! XoXoXo