Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Baby Loves. Edition: The 2nd Time Around

I was stopped twice in 10 minutes at the mall yesterday by other moms asking about baby products.  I’ve been meaning to write a post with my favorite baby products the second time around for awhile now and that was a good reminder to get it done!  I won’t waste anymore time with intros, but instead I’ll link to my favorite products the first time around with Hadley…

Favorite Baby Products 0-3 Months

Favorite Baby Products 3-6 Months

Favorite Baby Products 6-9 Months

Just about all of those items (minus the strollers) would still make my list this time (and a couple of them earned a second mention!). 

Baby Favorites copy

1. Monitor: If you have more than one child, a monitor with the ability to add a camera is a great option.  We originally had a Motorola one which I loved, but after going through 2 in 2 years, we switched brands.  I like this Summer Infant one (not quite as much as the Motorola one) and have had good luck with it so far!

2. Teether: In my experience, most babies start to show signs of teething around 4 months.  I never really found anything Hadley liked chewing on, but I found these Lifefactory ones for Harper and she LOVES them.  They are light enough for her to hold, soft enough that it doesn’t hurt if she hits herself in the face with, and hard enough to feel good on her gums.  And you can freeze them!

3. Angel Dear Lovey/Blankie: I learned with Hadley that these are not just any old lovey.  Something about them makes them superior to other loveys in a baby’s eyes.  **TIP: I’d suggest buying the “Pair & a Spare” or “Cuddle Twins” sets that you can find on Amazon.**

4. Paci Clip: I bought a bunch of these from The Posh Tots on Etsy when Hadley was born and they are still my favorite. **TIP: The ribbon end makes these universal, so you can use them for any pacifier**

5. Wubbanub: These help the pacifier stay in baby’s mouth, and are also just incredibly cute!

6. Baby Carrier: I have used the K’Tan probably every other day since Harper was born.  It’s really similar to the Moby (but easier/quicker to get on), which is also great.  The other one I have heard great things about is the Ergo.  I haven’t used it, but if I were buying another one, that’s the next one I’d get.

7. Woombie: I bought this on a whim for Harper and ended up rush-ordering 3 more because we loved it so much.  So much easier than any swaddle blanket, and no busting out of it in the middle of the night!  The 2-way zipper is also great for middle of the night diaper changes.

8. Rock & Play: I was lucky enough to borrow this from a good friend this time around.  Harper slept in it for probably the first 3 months of her life.  It still floats around the house from room to room as a place for her to hang out when I’m cooking or cleaning.

9. Double Stroller: There are a million options out there for this, but I LOVE my City Select.  So many different seat configurations, easy to fold and a HUGE basket on the bottom.

10. Wipeable changing pad and diaper clutch: The one shown is a random picture I found online, but my favorite combination is a wet bag like this ( and this set from Couture Mama on Etsy - 

11. ComoTomo Bottles: Hadley refused to take a bottle past about 4 1/2 months, so I was determined to find a bottle that Harper liked from the beginning.  After doing a lot of research, ComoTomo bottles appeared to be the most similar to breastfeeding, so I thought I’d give them a try.  They are the BEST bottles I’ve tried (and we tried a bunch with Hadley).  SUPER easy to clean and Harper never gulps with them like she does with other bottles.  They’re made out of silicone and are bacteria resistant, shatterproof, scratch Resistant, dishwasher Safe and leak-proof. **TIP: Don’t bother buying the 5oz ounce ones – go straight for the 8oz ones.  You’ll only use the 5oz for a couple months, then you’ll have to go buy bigger ones. And they aren’t exactly cheap.**

12. Infant Seat & Canopy: The Chicco Keyfit was on my list with Hadley and I added it again because we’re using it again for Harper.  It’s so easy to install and clean and looks brand new almost 3 years later.  I ordered a carseat canopy from Oh Sew Cute Designs on Etsy, but you can search Etsy and find thousands of them!  I loved having it to be able to keep Harper covered up in the winter and keep big sister’s hands away!

I think that’s all I’ve got!  What items could you not live without?

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wardrobe Wednesday: Toddler Edition

Having two girls is dangerous on my wallet.  There are just so many endless options out there clothing-wise and it seems like I discover a new one that I like even more than the last each day.  As I’m unpacking Hadley’s old clothes for Harper I’m realizing that my taste has changed a lot in terms of how I like to dress them.  I thought I’d do a clothing round-up of some of my new favorite clothing addictions (and some tried & true ones, too). 

I’ll start with accessories.  We’re in the south, so obviously the girls have to have a bow on their heads!  My two favorite places to buy bows are:

The Hairbow Company – this is where Harper’s monthly onesies came from, as well as most of the bows that the girls wear.  Harper and Patty’s sweet girl Dahlia are their monthly onesie models!



Polkadot Posies

You can find good unique headbands on etsy, too!

My newest clothing addiction is Persnickety.  I’ll warn you now: it’s PRICEY.  Like more than I would spend on myself.  But, as seasons change you can catch a good sale, and I found some resale groups on facebook which make it a little more affordable.  They just released their first fall line for the year (which I will not be purchasing because their new stuff is out of my price range, but I’ll keep and eye out for it on sale or resale!) and it’s adorable!  I love that the designs can coordinate for both younger and older girls.  The first picture with the red bell pants is an outfit I’m drooling over.  I want it in every size for both of my girls!


I mean, really?  Cuteness overload.

Another favorite of mine is Kelly’s Kids.  They have the best quality basics that last through wash after wash.  They have a bunch of items that literally come out of the wash looking brand new – ZERO wash wear and no ironing!


I LOVE this little denim dress – you could wear it with ANYTHING!


Kelly’s Kids does monogramming on a lot of their outfits, but I also have a couple favorite shops for monogrammed and appliqued tops/outfits.  My friend Hether is the owner of Ditsy Daisy Boutique.  She’s in the process of setting up her website, but in the meantime you can find her on Facebook.   These are a couple outfits/tops I’ve gotten from her…





grandmas present


As far as every day play clothes go, pretty much everything else I buy comes from either Target, Old Navy, Children’s Place or H&M.  I also just discovered Naartjie and like their stuff for more unique, affordable basics!

Hope that helps answer any outstanding questions!  It surprises me how often I get emails asking where I get Hadley’s clothes because they’re usually just Old Navy or H&M!  I LOVE to discover new clothes for the girls (despite Matt’s pleading with me to stop), so please share some of your favorites if I didn’t mention them!

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Monday, July 15, 2013

What I Packed in My Hospital Bag

I have a handful of friends who have recently asked what I packed in my hospital bag when I was having the girls, so I thought I would write a post so it’s all in one place.  Obviously this list is a little different for everyone depending on what you like, but here is what worked for me!

hospitalbag copy

  1. Pillows from home in bright colored pillow cases so they stand out from the hospital ones.  The hospital pillows are not that comfortable so you’ll be glad to have something comforting from home.
  2. If you plan to nurse, having your own nursing pillow with you will give you some good practice with it while you’ve got lots of extra hands to help you.
  3. Toiletries seem obvious, although the hospital will provide basic soap/shampoo for you. I actually bought a bunch of new make up the second time around and splurged on the nicer travel size shampoo, etc. so I felt like I was treating myself a little.  That first shower after you’ve had the baby feels so nice, you won’t want to use the generic bar soap at the hospital.
  4. Nursing tanks & yoga pants can work for your coming home outfit or an outfit to wear when you have visitors at the hospital.  I like these tanks from Target - – keep in mind that you’ll still look like you’re 5-6 months pregnant, so size up on them.
  5. A nice, colorful bathrobe can be a great piece to throw on over your hospital gown when you’re walking the walls in labor or for warmth in the hospital room with easy nursing access.
  6. Button down PJs were another favorite of mine to wear as an outfit while you’re in the hospital.  Buy some that have a pattern or some color to them so you feel a little more like you’re getting dressed.  It can do wonders for your energy level!
  7. Cozy slippers with a rubber sole.  You won’t want to put shoes on everytime you get out of the hospital bed, but you probably won’t want to walk around on the hospital floor barefoot or just in socks either.  These are the perfect compromise between the two.
  8. Electronics: iPhones, iPads, laptops (for loading pictures if you want) and all of their chargers/batteries!
  9. Camera & battery pack or charger (this could also include a video camera if you wanted).  Don’t forget those extra batteries and/or memory cards! You don’t want to miss out on getting a picture when your little one is just minutes old because you forgot to charge your camera!
  10. Pacifier: If you plan to use one, most hospitals these days (at least the ones around me) don’t give them out anymore because of the big push to help with breastfeeding.  Both of my girls have used paci’s since day 1 and both have been champion nursers, so don’t be afraid to use one if you want to.
  11. Coming home outfit for baby: Some people will say not to do a gown (it can be a little tricky with a car seat strap, but in my opinion, they are so tiny and their little legs scrunch up so much anyway that it’s tricky regardless of what they’re wearing.)
  12. Baby Book: You don’t need to bring the entire baby book, but we brought ours so we could get the girls’ footprints and handprints done by the nurses in the nursery.  You could just bring those pages if you wanted to save some room.  Both of the girls’ baby books are from Way Cool Designs and I love them!
  13. Last, but not least, the infant car seat!  Both of my girls are winter babies, so I brought thick cozy blankets to cover them up with once they were in their seats. (It’s not recommended to add any of those snug blanket insert things into a car seat unless it came with one.)

A couple of other items that weren’t on the list that you might want to consider:

  • a bag of clothing, toiletries and bedding for your husband if he’ll be staying the night at the hospital with you
  • An extra bag (could be baby’s diaper bag) for all the things the hospital will give you. (TIP: every time that cart is in your room with your baby, stock up on diapers and wipes!  They will re-fill it every time it goes back to the nursery so you can get a good stash of diapers before you even leave the hospital.)
  • Snacks if you don’t want to eat from the food court or hospital restaurant

Hopefully I’m not leaving off anything major – and hopefully this is helpful for anyone preparing to pack their own bag!

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Friday, July 12, 2013

Five On Friday

I’m linking up with Darci at The Good Life today for 5 on Friday!  My first post without pictures of either one of the girls in it…*gasp!* (But don’t worry, most of the points are about them anyway.)


{1} Once you have kids, time spent with your parents becomes a double edged sword.  Matt was traveling for work (read: fly fishing in Utah. It’s a hard life he leads) most of this week so my mom came to stay with me to help with the girls and hang out.  It was so amazing to have her help.  I thoroughly enjoyed getting to sleep in a bit a couple mornings (as in sleeping until 7:30/7:45!), not stressing about making dinner, only changing half the diapers, having an extra person to entertain a busy toddler, and just having another adult around during the day to have conversations with!  However, now I’m dealing with the detox phase.  It is seriously as if Hadley is detoxing from a drug.  After dinner tonight she was fine one minute, then SOBBING for no reason the next, then throwing a tantrum on the stairs on the way to the bath.  Bath time was equally dramatic and ended with a tearful toddler screaming that she didn’t want to dry her hair (despite the fact that having wet hair resulted in the same dramatic tears… you can’t win with a 2 year old). 

Said through gasps, sniffles and sobs: “I don-don-don’t wanna dwy my haaaaiiiiirrr!” 

“Okay. It’s going to be wet when you go to bed then.”

“Noooo!  I don-don-don-don’t want my hair to be wet at bedtime!”

I foresee a Friday spent in our pjs and lots of Daniel Tiger and Sophia the First while we try to rest away the after-effects of the grandparent-drug.

{2} I really wish Harper would sleep through the night.   That’s all.

{3} This is the first summer since we’ve been married that we haven’t taken a vacation.  We’re still toying with the idea of renting a beach house in Galveston for a long weekend before the summer is done but there’s nothing in the books which feels a little odd.  Although I’ll admit that it’s my fault – I am so picky about what type of vacation is “doable” with 2 young girls.  Especially including one two year old who does NOT sleep with anyone else in the room with her and an infant who just doesn’t sleep regardless of what room she’s in. *yawn*  It’s not really a vacation if you can’t sleep, is it?  Maybe next summer we can leave the girls at home and enjoy adult beverages and sleeping in.


{okay. I lied. I had to throw in this picture of Hadley playing in the ocean for her first time at Hilton Head last summer.}

{4} Our upstairs AC unit went out last week.  As of yesterday we were STILL dealing with the repair company trying to get it running properly.  Thankfully we have 2 other units, and right now Hadley’s room is the only room upstairs, so it hasn’t been a huge deal, but FIX IT already!  The guy who came out last night was the 6th guy to come and look at it and it was the 7th time someone has been out to our house in the past week and a half.  Can you say inefficient?? It appears to be running properly now, but I’m not holding my breath.  And I also know the names of all of their office managers and the president of the company.  I’m afraid I became one of the headache customers… whoops.

{5} My school supply loving heart couldn’t pass up this pack of sharpies at Target the other day.  Is there anything better than writing in a planner with a fresh fun new color sharpie?  IMG_5268 Sorry for the randomness… I’ve got a couple posts about packing a hospital bag and favorite baby products the second time around coming soon!  Happy Friday!

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Harper 5 Month Pictures

This first picture is Harper’s trademark face right now.  Chewing on that bottom lip must feel good on those teething gums?


1 Month Pics15 Month Edits

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Harper: 5 Months

Sweet Harper you are now 5 months (and 3 days) old!  You are such a complete joy and are SO much happier than your sister was at this age!  Your teething has kicked in full force this month, so you’ve been a little crankier than usual, but hopefully you’ll have an easier time with your teeth than your big sister. 

You are still not sleeping through the night (maybe I’ll sleep when you’re in elementary school??) but thanks to the magic of the Merlin Magic Sleepsuit you are at least in your crib, in your room, and down to 1-2 wakeups per night. 


I’m afraid to write down your schedule right now because it seems that the second I do that, it changes, but for the purpose of memories, I’ll go for it.  You wake up around 7:30a, eat and play for a bit, then back down for nap around 8:30/9 for an hour and a half usually.  Eat again around 10:30, play til nap around 11:30/12 for 1 1/2-2 hours, then eat again around 1:30/2, play til nap around 3/3:30 for anywhere from 1-2 hours, eat again at 4:30/5 and play.  Some days you’ll take another cat nap around 6 for 40 minutes or so before bath at 7/7:30 and other days you’ll stay awake til then.  We do bath, nurse, put you in your sleep suit and rock for a few minutes and you are down for the night by 7:30/7:45 most nights.  Lately you’ve been waking up once around 12:30a for your paci but you go right back to sleep after I give it to you and then you wake up to eat around 4 (and again right back to sleep after nursing).  

You get distracted so easily now when you are nursing.  You are so aware of your surroundings and extra curious about everything, so we have to nurse in quiet rooms most of the time.  (Which means your sister gets some iPad time in – lucky her!)


At your 4 month appointment, our doctor said to start solids anytime between then and 6 months.  I was going to wait until 6 months like we did with your sister, but you have been grabbing at my food and drinks and leaning in for them like you might be ready for solids sooner, so we tried some oatmeal.  Not going to lie, I was also hoping it might improve your sleeping.  Although you did take to it fairly well, I think it upset your tummy and we had a rough night that night so I packed the oatmeal up and we’ll try again in a couple weeks.  Maybe with sweet potatoes this next time like we started with for big sister. 


You love: your big sister, your paci, rolling from your tummy to your back, chewing on your fingers, being held (so long as the person holding you is moving), being in the k’tan or Moby, and bath time.  You do not like teething. :(  You tolerate tummy time and have been getting better and better in the car. 


I don’t have stats this month since we didn’t have a doctor’s appointment, so I’ll leave you with a video of you laughing at your big sister. 

Hadley making Harper laugh

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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!

From our home to yours – Happy Independence Day!


And because who doesn’t love some good comparisons…

Fourth of July 2011-2013, and a comparison of Hadley & Harper in the same outfit (Hadley was a month older than Harper).




Edited Pics6

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Another Month Come & Gone - June

Back with another photo recap of what we were up to in June!  If you follow me on Instagram you’ve probably seen a lot of these already, but I’ll re-post some to have them all here.

The best we could do for a family photo – this was going out to dinner for Matt’s birthday.


The kids’ end of the table (minus sweet Avery who was on the other side.)  All 5 kids there were girls!


Katie & Eric came up to visit us (and attend a wedding).  It honestly makes me a little sad when they visit because I’m reminded of all the good times we’re missing out on living in different cities.  As you can tell, Harper loved having her aunt Katie to snuggle with.  And the girls couldn’t ask for a better uncle than they have in Eric.  I think he’s ready for some kids of his own… ;)



Hadley had fun outside with her water table & finger paints, and little sister Harper enjoyed some time in the bumbo. :)




I went to put Harper down for her nap one day and came back to “Shhhhhh! I putting baby night-night momma! And reading her a book!”  “Oooh.  Baby what’s wrong?  You cwyin? I here!  Is otay baby!!  You need a paci?  I get it baby – here go!  I wuv you baby… have sweet dweams!  You nice & cozy baby?” 

She is such a little mama.


More play date fun with friends…


Sweet little Avery was so funny!  She was a little wrestler and kept climbing all over Hadley.  Hadley was cracking up at “baby Avery!”  (And yes, she’s still in diapers. Don’t judge.)


Hadley started swim lessons this month!  She was a little timid her first lesson and held back tears most of the second lesson, but she’s getting better each time, so I know they’ll be worth it!


“Aunt” Courtney asked if she could come to swim lessons – of course Hadley was THRILLED to have an audience and Harper was happy to have an extra set of hands to hold her! ;)


In an effort to get some more sleep, I caved and bought “Merlin’s Magic Sleepsuit” and it was worth every penny.  Not sure how we’ll transition out of this, but Harper is finally out of the swaddle and in her own room, so we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.  For now, I’m just happy for the better sleep we’re getting.


We had a fun night at the Walther’s house – the littles sat in their seats and smiled at each other, the big girls swam in the pool, and the adults enjoyed good food and conversation!



Nana & Poppy came up and turned our backyard into a mini water park.  Hadley had a blast splashing with them!



We also went to the Dallas Zoo in June, but because this post is long enough, I’ll save that for a separate post!

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