Saturday, December 20, 2014

Our Baby Girl's Nursery!

We finally finished up our baby girl's nursery. She will be in our room for the beginning so her nursery is set up mostly for show. Especially her crib. Nonetheless, we are excited to have it finished. Here are a few quick pictures!








Cheers!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

33 Weeks! {Pregnancy Update}

How far along: 33 Weeks!

Appointments: Our doctor ordered an extra ultrasound because I have been measuring ahead for a few of my appointments. They wanted to make sure I didn't have extra fluid. Good News: no extra fluid, she is just a tad bit larger than average :)

Baby size:  17 inches long and 4.5 pounds. She weighs as much as a pineapple.

Weight gain: 2-3 LBS

Belly button: In. And I think I may avoid it popping out!

Maternity clothes: Yes! I also just bought a few other shirts to hold me over for this last month and a half.

Gender: Baby Girl :)

Movement: She has picked up more of a schedule when it comes to moving around. She is pretty active in the AM and in the evenings. I can see her move across my tummy all the time!

Sleep: Sleep has been hard to get once again! I find my hips really hurt while I'm on one side and I continuously toss and turn. Doesn't make for a very peaceful nights sleep.

Food aversions: None.
 
Food cravings:  I have still been liking my sweets unfortunately, and I'm really craving milk again.

Labor signs: No! But I've been feeling some stronger BH contractions.

Swelling: Still some swelling and in the mornings when I wake up I can feel my hands are swollen with the fluid in my joints. I feel as if I have giant paws!

Nursery Progress: I work on this a little each week. Trying to wrap it up before our maternity pictures this week!

Best moment this week: Celebrating my baby girl at our church baby shower :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Finishing up my Christmas items and counting down until it's CHRISTMAS!

What I miss: My family up north. As the holidays get close along with my baby girl's due date...I have been missing my family like crazy!

What I'm looking forward to:  The holidays, spending more time with friends, and the arrival of my baby girl!

Bump Pictures:


Friday, December 5, 2014

The Changing Tide.

I have to admit, I tried to be overly clever with the title of this blog post. I was at the beach the other day and the tide was coming in; it was changing. I suddenly had the title for this blog post I had written several weeks ago and couldn't bring myself to post.

I guess I should start with this. I'm a newlywed; by all sense of the word in my opinion. I have been married about a year and a half to the best man I have and could ever know. He is my rock, my other half, my encourager, and (to be cliche) the love of my life. I have enjoyed the blissful beginnings of my marriage even though not perfect. I smile as I watch my husband play with our dog Rebel or mow the lawn outside as I make him lunch. I chuckle on the inside as he stares openly at the refrigerator trying to decide if he is hungry or not. I am truly happy and content. God has given me such a blessing in this little family.

But as the months slowly tick down to when our baby girl is due, I can't help but feel sadness.  With all the emotions of pregnancy and getting ready for this new life that we are now responsible for, I can't help but feel disappointed that it is no longer the the two of us. The change that is coming is scary and unpredictable. When these emotions come over me I feel guilt. How could I be sad about this baby girl? I already love her so much and I'm even more excited for her to get here so that our family will grow! So how can both of these emotions live in tandem within my heart? How can I feel sadness in a time of such joy?

Change. It's a new season. The changing tide if you will, and I have never been very good at it.

I can't wait to meet my baby girl. I can't wait to hold her in my arms and experience the cuddles that only a newborn can give. I look forward to watching her discover new things and see the world through her little eyes. But most importantly, I am overly excited to watch her relationship with her daddy. To see my husband become a father and take on that role of protector, hero, and at times "mean daddy" if she doesn't get her way. The thought of seeing him grow into this brings me to happy tears.

O what a wave (ocean reference again...I'm good right?) of emotions this new chapter of my life brings. I need to cut myself some slack. It's okay to feel sad about it not just being my husband and me anymore. BUT-- I also welcome, with pure happiness and joy, this little addition to our family. I can't wait for you to get here baby girl!


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Skip Hop Duo Luxe Diaper Bag {First Impressions}

I finally picked a diaper bag! Yes! I honestly wrestled with this since I was like 15 weeks pregnant. I knew what I wanted in the beginning and it turned out not to be feasible for us at this point in time.

My first two diaper bags choices were as follows:
Ju Ju Be BFF: $165.00

I first thought I would just add this cost to my budget for baby and I would end up getting one of these. I had ultimately decided I liked the Ju Ju Be BFF better. But as items for our precious little girl started adding up, I began to realize that these diaper bags may not happen. I had received several Babies R Us gift cards at my showers and I finally made the decision to use these to purchase my diaper bag. Therefore, I was limited to what Babies R Us had.

After looking around and testing out several bags I decided on one.

There are several features that really attracted me to this bag:

1) Style: This bag looks more like a handbag than a diaper bag which is nice if you will be carrying only one bag around. The stripe with hints of red looks very classy.

2) Durability: This particular bag (because the material on some of the Duos are different) has a wipable fabric that is easy to clean.

3) Built in Stroller Straps: These are slip-resistant and are adjustable to fit your stroller. I really wanted a bag with this feature. Some diaper bags you have to buy these separate.

4) Multiple Carrying Options: *See photos below* You have two different options to carry this bag which is nice. The shorter, handbag like handles make it easy to carry and style as a handbag and the over the shoulder strap creates another easy carry option. There is a negative to the shoulder strap which I will address in that section.


5) A Usable Mommy Pocket: One of the reasons I loved the Ju Ju Be BFF is because it had a very functional mommy pocket. The Skip Hop Duo Luxe has its own version of a mommy pocket if you chose to use it as such. The pocket goes about half the length of the bag and can easily hold your wallet, keys, sunglasses, etc. Perfect for separating mommy's items from baby's.

6) Two Hidden Side Pockets: These are insulated for bottles but don't create that extra bulk around the diaper bag like bottle pockets located on the outside of a diaper bag. This is just a personal preference because it does take up space on the inside.


Inside this diaper bag you will find ample storage and two large organizational pockets. I found that this diaper bag size (14wx13.5hx4d) could easily work for me as I plan to cloth diaper. I will also most likely use travel and quick bags to help create additional organizational structure.

There are a few things that I'm not so thrilled about:

1) Two Magnetic Front Pockets: Key word here, magnetic. Don't get me wrong...I love the additional front pockets for easy access to items, but they are not zipper which could potentially mean losing items etc.

2) No Padding on Shoulder Strap: I like a shoulder strap. I would have preferred one with some padding to make it more comfortable.

3) Changing Pad: I feel that the changing pad that come with this bag is less than ideal. I went ahead and purchased an additional memory foam changing pad ($10) to use instead. This again is a personal preference. I just didn't care for the padding it offered.

A few other features to make note of:

Key Fob Zipper Pull
BPA Free
Phthalate Free
Nine Pockets Total

 Overall I made a few compromises when it came to my diaper bag in order to save some money, but I'm generally pleased with this bag and I can't wait to organize my baby girls items in here :)

*Disclaimer: Diaper bag was purchased by me. I was not compensated for a positive review of this Skip Hop bag. All thoughts and opinions are my own.*


Sunday, November 23, 2014

30 Weeks!!! {Pregnancy Update}

This week I'm including some other random facts...

How far along: 30 Weeks!

Appointments: I have started going every two weeks :) This is very exciting as the clock starts to count down.

Baby size:  15.7 inches long and 3 pounds :)

Weight gain: Not since my last appointment as per the numbers, but I feel larger for sure! Even my maternity clothes feel snug.

Belly button: In...but I'm on the edge!

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: Baby Girl :)

Movement: Her kicks are so much stronger now and she is still moving all around.

Sleep:  I've been having some good sleep as of late. Up several times a night to use the bathroom.

Food aversions: None.
 
Food cravings:  I had a random craving for Nerds the other day. Yes...the candy that is pure sugar. I bought myself a box and ate the whole thing in an hour or so. Don't judge!

Labor signs: No! But I've been feeling some stronger BH contractions.

Swelling: My ankles and feet have been swelling a bit when I'm on them all day and they hurt man! Also, my face feels fuller...kinda puffy!

Nursery Progress: It is really coming along! I have several items still yet to wash and prep, but mostly everything is in order. We are still waiting to purchase our glider, but that will be the final furniture item!

Best moment this week: Seeing new life :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Spending time with my mom!

What I miss: My regular clothes. I feel as if I rotate the same 10 maternity outfits.

What I'm looking forward to:  The holidays in my own home :)

Bump Pictures: 


Upcoming Blog Posts:
Diaper Bag Choice
Nursery Reveal
32 Weeks Pregnancy Update

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

27 Weeks! {Pregnancy Update}

How far along: 27 weeks and 3 days! Almost to the third trimester :)

Baby size:14 1/2 inches long and 2 pounds :)

Weight gain: Probably...

Belly button: In...but I swear that thing looks like it could pop!

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: Baby Girl :)

Movement: I have been so busy that I haven't felt her as much as I normally do, but she is still a little jumping bean!

Sleep: News on the sleep front! I have actually been sleeping pretty soundly the past two weeks. I say that and then I will revert back to my horrible, up every hour nights.

Food aversions: I don't really have any at the moment.
 
Food cravings: As of late it has been sweets :( I have done so well not craving sweets or sugar and now...it has happened.

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Watching her jump all over in my belly. Yes...I said watching. This girl can kick!

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Orlando date day with my husband :)

What I miss: Diet Coke.

What I'm looking forward to:  Family coming to visit in the next few months and the upcoming holidays :)

Bump Pictures: 
Please excuse the mess behind me and apparently the white dots on my tummy...I guess it had been a rough day.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa Mix!

So I just have to share! I discovered this Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa Mix at Target the other day and love, love, LOVE it! 

This is made by Archer Farms and to make a cup you just mix 1 packet of this with 1 cup of hot milk. I like to heat up my milk in a small saucepan then add the packet and whisk together. So yummmy!

I decided to pick this up when I was craving a Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks while doing some Target shopping. They know how to get me! When I saw this, I told myself that I would purchase it (I believe it was $3.99) and be able to have several treats for the price of a (as in UNO) PSL. Obviously this is a bit different being hot cocoa and all...but seriously it hits the spot.

Another fun fact: Each packet is 100 calories. Then add your milk calorie count depending on the type of milk you use. Say we used nonfat milk (1 cup because that is what it calls for) that is around 86 calories give or take brand etc. Total for this cup of Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa is 186 calories. We are still splurging here...I mean we could just have water but what fun is that. The calories are about the same for a Short (8 oz.) PSL with nonfat milk and no whipped cream. However I always get sucked in and order a Tall or Grande so that would just put me waaayy over. BUTTT...the great thing is...we aren't paying the price over and over.

Nonetheless, this stuff rocks my socks and it is perfect for that cooler day (those don't exist here in FL...but still).

Let me know if you try this OR if you have already discovered this wonder.

Cheers!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Buying for Baby.

O Babies R Us... you are at the center of my point of contention. Am I the only pregnant lady out there that feels this way? I most certainly think NOT. I mean holy cowfree, I get crazy-eyed and overwhelmed walking into that store. And I like to shop mind you! Like, really like to shop.
The reality of it is, there is just so much out there for babies. My train of thought when it comes to buying for my baby girl has changed so much since finding out I was pregnant.

Here is how it went down when I first found out. All I did was think about the cute little outfits, the wonderful furniture I had picked out at Pottery Barn in like, high school, and day dream about the most beautiful nursery in the world that I WAS GOING TO HAVE.

Ha!

If only I could talk to myself a few months ago. I would have been like "Girl...get a grip. Your kid needs diapers!" Now, I don't want to say that thinking of all these nice baby things is a bad thing or that wanting them for your precious (will never destroy anything child) is a horrible waste of time. But! As I have floated around on the internet exploring what baby needs and making several trips to Babies R Us, Buy Buy Baby, and every other baby store I can manage to drag my husband into, I have become saturated with items that baby needs.

I swear. If I could add up everything that all these blogs and online websites say you need for your child combined...I could buy a house!

So I took a step back. I regrouped. Babies R Us was not going to get me ANYMORE. (I really do like Babies R Us...I'm not picking on them). I realized a few key points:

1. What Momma wants for baby, is not what always what baby needs: Duh! I can hear you saying that now. Mumbling it to your computer screen as you read. Yes...yes I know. But especially for me, in the beginning of my pregnancy I let that slide out the window (more like booted it out the window...). I think I was overcome with emotion and advertising that I just wanted everything out there and I lost focus on what the baby really needs. While there are so many fun toys out there...baby doesn't need it all.

2. Those blog posts with "What baby really needs" titles, aren't always true for you: I have to admit, as a blogger, I like to read blogs (shocker!). And when I started to realize I would have to take out a mortgage for all the baby items I wanted, I went online to the world of blogs. I have several mommy bloggers that I follow and they have wonderful posts on the "Top 10 Things Baby Really Needs" or "How to Really Know What to Buy for Baby". These were helpful, they really were. I was able to pick up several pointers from moms who have done this before. But the more I read, the more I found out that every list was different. Some items were mentioned numerous times so I immediately added those to my list; but it's not the same story for the majority of the other items. It was in that moment I realized that I'm not going to have this cookie cutter list that everyone agrees on. Moms and babies are all different. So I did my research and took everything mentioned with a grain of salt. Then, spoke directly with some moms that I trusted, filtered through it all and put together my list.

3. Stick to a Budget: This is huge! So huge that I will be doing an entire blog post on how we budgeted for our little one. Having a budget is key to not over buying items or spending wayyy to much on things that will be used once. I like the way we budgeted because it didn't prevent me from getting little things here and there, but it allowed me to focus on bigger picture items and the long term. More to come on this, but BUDGET, BUDGET, BUDGET!

So...hey, I'm not sure how many of you made it this far in my blog post, but if you did thanks for sticking with me. Being pregnant is such an exciting time and emotions can get me caught up in the material items that baby needs or I want. However, at the end of the day my little girl needs love. A loving home to feel safe in and loving parents to guide her. I just ask God to give me wisdom on what my little girl truly needs so that I may provide.


Thursday, October 16, 2014

25 Weeks *This Weekend* {Pregnancy Update}

How far along: 24 weeks and 5 days! I'll be 25 weeks this weekend :)

Baby size: 13 1/2 inches long and weighs a pound and a half. The size of a rutabaga.

Weight gain: Probably...

Belly button:In :)

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: Baby Girl :)

Movement: She has been active, but I'm starting to notice more of a pattern with her movement.

Sleep: This gets old, but I'm still up 2-3 times a night. I either need the restroom, have heartburn, or my back hurts.

Food aversions: Chicken. I like chicken wings though, it's more like chicken dishes. Nope. Still can't do it!
 
Food cravings: Fruit and Milk (Whole Milk...which I never used to like or drink BTW)  :)

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Getting her bookshelves hung in the nursery and picking up a few new outfits.

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Staying busy... it helps the time pass along :)

What I miss: Breathing out of my nose. I have had nothing but "stuff" stopping up my nose this whole week!

What I'm looking forward to: Holding my baby girl and seeing her smile :)

Bump Pictures:


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

22 Weeks! {Pregnancy Update}

How far along: 22 weeks and 3 days!

Baby size: 11 inches long and weighs 1 pound. The size of a spaghetti squash.

Weight gain: O yeaaa and I'm not telling :)

Belly button:In :)

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: Baby Girl :)

Movement: She is SOOO active :) Her kicks get stronger daily!

Sleep: I'm up for about 2 hours every night :( I have really bad heartburn and I get really hot randomly. It's rough sleeping, but worth it for my baby girl :)

Food aversions: Chicken and I'm not really big on chocolate as of late.
 
Food cravings: Fruit. Mostly apples!

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Starting to talk to her throughout the day :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Seeing my husband receive a very prestigious award with work!

What I miss: Sleep!

What I'm looking forward to: Meeting my little girl! Time is going so slow!

Bump Pictures:

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

DIY Nursery Closet Dividers!

I'm tackling several DIY projects for the nursery. Partly because I looooove to craft (even though I'm not that great), and also because every time I look on Etsy and find something I like, it costs waaaayyy to much.

Nonetheless, I really wanted closet dividers for my little girl's different sized clothes. I mean...I am a professional organizer. It only makes sense for me to want these things :) After looking on Etsy I just decided I would make some myself. Here is how they turned out!

After a quick trip to Hobby Lobby I had:  wood door signs (79 cents each), cute scrapbook paper, stickers, Mod Podge, and a few tools from home (paint/knife)
I started by just painting the backs of the door signs with some paint I had on hand.
I cut the scrapbook paper to fit the front side of the hanger and adhered with Mod Podge. (Does that stuff get any better?) Let it dry for 15 minutes. Then I applied my number stickers to each sign and applied a Mod Podge top coat. Let it dry!
I used some ribbon (that I had) to tie my closet dividers to my closet rail. I love the color they add to the nursery :)
Can't wait to fill this closet with clothes!


Cheers!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

20 Week Pregnancy Update!! {Plus Gender Reveal}

How far along: 20 weeks and 4 days!

Baby size: 6 1/2 inches long and weighs 12 ounces! (the ultrasound tech gave us her weight)

Weight gain: O yes...

Belly button:In :)

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: It's A GIRL!!!! We are so excited! We have a name picked out already that both Joey and I really like. However, this morning I Googled the meaning of her name and it's not the best soooooo.... Haha! We are 95% sure we have the name! It could still change yet...

Movement: I feel her light kicks everyday now :) Love feeling her move! Can't wait for them to get stronger!

Sleep: I finally purchased a Snoogle! It is a pregnancy pillow and I LOVE IT! I have been pretty hot during the night while sleeping so I try not to keep it in bed with me all night. I usually use it when I nap or rest.

Food aversions: Still chicken! I'm not overly thrilled with the thought of eating meat.

Food cravings: Fruit!! I could eat fruit all day long. I really don't care for sweets too often (thank the Lord).

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Finding out the gender and seeing her little profile :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: This is still baby related, but working on the nursery! We finally finished the painting and put her crib and dresser together!

What I miss: Ice Cream!

What I'm looking forward to: Doing some more work on the nursery :)

Bump Pictures:
Nursery Progress:


Thursday, September 4, 2014

My Small Washi Tape Collection

I don't know about you, but I have totally jumped on the Washi Tape bandwagon! I had a few rolls that I bought before it was a "thing" to put washi tape everywhere, but since then I have bought many more.

Now my collection is not a large one. In fact, I have to slap my own hand away from picking up more rolls when I go shopping (or at least until I use some more up). I just think washi tape is SO FUN!!

I keep my washi tape displayed in this clear apothecary jar because I love to see all the bright washi tape colors through it. I recently started having to leave the top off because I have one too many rolls stuffed in there.
I use washi tape for numerous tasks around my home, but I figured I would break it down into my top three uses. I would love to know how you use your washi tape.

My Washi Tape Uses:

1. Labels: I love to use washi tape as a fun colored background for my labels. Either using it to create a label boarder or to allow my label (created from my label maker) to stand out.

2. My Planner: Washi tape has become a must have in my planner. I am currently operating out of my Erin Condren Life Planner, and I love to spruce up the color on the pages with washi tape!

3. Cards/Crafting: I'm not much of a crafty person (I try but often fail), but I do like to make homemade cards every now and then for family and friends. Having washi tape to amplify the look of the card is great! If I were to ever (and I mean IF) to take up scrap-booking, I could foresee washi tape being a must have there as well.
These are the rolls I have collected so far! I have purchased most of these from office stores (Staples and Office Depot), but there are a few from Michaels. I have yet to order washi tape from Etsy.com, but that it where I plan to venture next in my washi journey.

This is my favorite roll!

Cheers!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

16 Weeks! {Pregnancy Update}

How far along: 16 weeks and 4 days!

Baby size: 4 1/2 inches long and weighs 3 1/2 ounces. The size of an avocado!

Weight gain: I think I put on another 3 pounds or so.

Belly button:In :)

Maternity clothes: Yes!

Gender: Still don't know! What do you think? Guesses welcome :) We find out September 15th!!!

Movement: Feeling some more and more flutters, but no kicking yet.

Sleep: Is still horrible! I toss and turn all night. I seriously think I may invest in a Snoogle!

Food aversions: Still chicken! Also, apparently turkey. Something with birds I guess? Hmmm!

Food cravings: Still watermelon :)

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Belly really getting large...larger than I would expect at 16 weeks :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Spending quality time with my husband and seeing family and friends!

What I miss: Being skinny!!!

What I'm looking forward to: Feeling the kicks for the first time and also reaching the 20 week half way point in my pregnancy.

Bump Pictures:

Thursday, August 7, 2014

14 Weeks! {Pregnancy Update}



How far along: 14 weeks and 5 days! Almost 15 weeks!

Baby size: 3 1/2 inches long and weighs 1 1/2 ounces. The size of a lemon!

Weight gain: 2 pounds so far in my second trimester.

 Belly button:In :)

Maternity clothes: Yes! I need them now lol I bought several pairs of jeans from Macy's and a few other shirts.

Gender: We don't know yet. And it's starting to annoy me...I may have to find out early!

Movement: No kicks yet, but I'm definately feeling flutters :)

Sleep: Is terrible! I have been waking up at 2 AM and I'm awake until 4 AM or so. Naps! Naps! Naps!

Food aversions: Chicken! UGHH! The thought of eating chicken makes me sick. Yuck!

Food cravings: Still watermelon :)

Labor signs: No!

Best moment this week: Picking up a few baby books for the nursery :)

Non-baby-related favorite moment this week: Rebel destroying a BRAND NEW toy in an hour or so.

What I miss: Sleeping through the night.

What I'm looking forward to: Finding out the gender :)

Bump Pictures:





Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A5 Filofax vs Erin Condren Life Planner {First Impressions Comparison}

I recently ordered a new planner for my 2015 planner and I decided on the Erin Condren Life Planner after hearing so many awesome reviews! Now I am a Filofax girl! That was my first planner purchase and I have loved using it; but, I thought it would be a good idea to review a different planner and hopefully it will help you out when deciding on your planner purchase. I do have a comparison video as well on my channel that I will link down below.

Here are some of the Pros and Cons of each planner that I mentioned in my video.
Additional Photos!
Comparison Charts: These were included in my video but they are here on the blog to help refresh your memory.



Check out my comparison video here :)

Cheers!