Friday, March 28, 2014

My First Stitch Fix

If you haven’t heard about Stitch Fix yet, here is the rundown…

When you go to the website and join you pay a $20 styling fee.  You are then directed to your styling profile, where you tell your personal stylist your size, lifestyle, style, shape, and budget.  You then schedule your fix and your personal stylist sends you 5 articles.  You get to try it on at home, keep what you want, and send back what you don’t.  That $20 styling fee is put towards what you keep.  For instance, if you only like one item for $48, you send back the rest and pay $28.  You also leave feedback on the website about what you liked and didn’t like about the fix.  Easy, convenient, and oh so fun!

So I got my first fix this week!  I got so excited when I saw the box on the porch!

It was so-so and I only ended up keeping one item…which is good for the budget.  I think they get better with time because your stylist truly learns your personal style.  There were some really cute ideas but they just didn’t fit me well.  

I’m a tiny person but when I tried on some of these things, I felt like it made me look like I gained 20 pounds. 

So here is the lowdown…

Emperia Avalon Two Tone Tote with stud detail

I am no longer a purse person because I use E’s diaper bag.  Even if I were, I wouldn’t like this purse.  It didn’t seem like it was good leather and I just didn’t like the way it looked.

Honey Punch Layla Elbow Patch Detail Cardigan

Before I tried this on, I thought this was the piece I was going to keep.  I really loved the idea of this cardigan.  I had asked for easy nursing clothes and this fit the bill.  I loved the patch on the elbow, the stripes, and the material was amazingly soft.  I actually loved everything about this piece except for the fit.  It was really long and almost kind of bulky. 

Loveappella Elmes Button-Front Mixed Print Tank

Just, No!  Material was really nice but ick, ick, ick! 

41 Hawthorn Toulouse Collared Wrap Dress

This is a cute piece but I really have no need for a dress at this point in my life.  I actually liked it a lot more after I saw this picture of me in it but still… it went back.

Sanctuary Larken Roll-Cuff Cotton Cargo Short

I thought this was the one piece I was not going to like when I opened the box.  I’m really picky about pants and even pickier about shorts but these fit me oh so great!  They are comfortable but look really cute too.  I’m excited to have these in my summer wardrobe!

I’m really happy that I liked one piece of this fix.  Hopefully, next month’s will be even better. 

Stitch Fix is really fun and I invite you all to take part.  This post is not sponsored but I do get referral credit for whoever signs up using the links in this post. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Pinch Me! Elise is 6 Months Old!

Goose, you are 6 months old!!!  It feels like you have been with us forever but at the same time I cannot believe it has been 6 months since you have been born!

It just keeps getting more fun with you.  Even though I miss your cuddling, sleepy days, I love being able to play with you and make you laugh.  You make me laugh and smile more than I thought possible.  Your personality is really shining through and I think you are a good mix of both your dad and I.  I can tell you are going to be a talker around us (you’re a little shy around other family members) and you definitely like things your way.  You definitely love your parents and the life we have given you.

Look at those beautiful blue eyes!
You finally have rolled over both ways.  I think you think you don’t know how to do it because it happens spontaneously and you get this surprised look on your face.  You are sitting pretty well on your own but still sway a bunch so we keep the Boppy behind you.  You’re starting to react to your toys, which is really fun to watch.  You shake rattles, hug and kiss stuffed animals, and reach for your favorite toys.  You have also found your feet and love them!

Bath time is still your favorite time of day.  You have taken up splashing and water is starting to get everywhere.  I have a feeling that once you are sitting up better we will have to move you to the big bathtub. 

I have started running with you in the jogging stroller and boy is it hard.  You don’t seem to mind it much but get a little annoyed with bumps and if it is longer than 20-30 minutes.  You have to be well rested and fed to enjoy things like that. 

This is one of my favorite pictures.  It tells my story...
You grab everything that is in your reach.  You love your door bouncer.  You have just started really enjoying eating.  You love your pups.  You love being read to and looking at the books.  You love being sung to and talked to.  You love mornings.  You love the Ergo (and so do I… I wouldn’t be able to get any shopping done without it)! You love being close to your parents.

Your first time at the park... you aren't too sure about the swings yet.  No tears though so that was good!
You do not like not getting what you want.  You do not like not being able to move from point a to point b.  You do not like when I walk away from you.  You HATE the carseat and “long” (more than 5 minutes) car rides. 

We got a camera this month and I have been having so much fun playing around with you as my favorite model. Here are some of my favorites...

You like life… what can I say?!  I love watching you grow and learn about yourself.  And, I love that you are mine!  

You are my angel, my darling, my star and my love will find you wherever you are!

Love, Mom

Friday, March 7, 2014

Day in the Life with a 6ish Month Old

I see these posts on blogs all the time and I always like reading them to see how much our schedule delineates from “norm.” Plus, I think they are kind of fun for family to see what we do all day.

We will start off the night before:

7:30-8:00pm - E goes down for the night
8:00-10:00pm – Mike gets home. We get to watch our favorite tv shows or if he gets home really late we will just eat dinner and talk at the dinner table until we get tired
2:00-5:00am – E wakes up for a feeding
7:30am – E is up for the day
8:00am – We finally get out of bed and start our day
8:05am – E plays around with breast feeding and decides she would rather not
8:10-8:30am – Dogs get fed, I drink coffee, and E either gets held or jumps in her jumper.  She starts to complain so we move onto something else

8:30-9:00am – We go into the playroom and see if we can waste some time.  I usually get more interested in her toys than she does and I often catch myself pushing every single button on a toy while E is chewing on a block 3 feet away

9:00am - Nurse E to sleep
9:10am – E doesn’t want to take her nap.  I put her in her crib… she cries… I take her out… she stops… I put her back in… she cries… I take her out and she starts to suck her thumb and lays her head on my chest and falls asleep 6/10 times like this.

9:30am – E is finally asleep.  I speed clean the house.  Sometimes I get a spark and deep clean the entire house in 45 minutes (I would really like to see myself during this time… I probably look like the old, tanned neighbor from “Something About May.”  I usually wait to run on Mike’s days off but sometimes I’ll run on the treadmill during this time.  I take a shower.  Do LOTS of laundry
10:00am – I am starving.  I eat breakfast… oatmeal, berries, and maple syrup
11:30am – E’s naps vary and she will wake up anytime between 10 and 11:30
11:30am – Nurse E

12:00pm – Change E and put her in day clothes.  Take 300 pictures because she looks so darn cute

12:20pm – Feed E real food.  She gags, I laugh, she laughs, and then she is done

12:50pm – E is starting to get bored again and so am I.  We take the dogs for a walk and I curse the fact that we did because Gracie is pulling and Chloe gets scared of her own shadow.
1:20pm – Get home.  E starts to rub her eyes.  I take that cue and nurse her again. This time she falls asleep
1:30pm – E is napping and I get the much-needed break.  Can’t really tell you what I do during this time but I try to be productive.  Today, I made pear puree for E next week.  On hard days, I lie on the couch and catch up on DVR shows.
3:00pm – E is up and gets nursed
3:20-6pm – We roam around the house.  I snack, E jumps, sits in her high chair, I snack, we play in the playroom, and I snack some more. 

6:00pm – E is done
6:01-6:30pm – I try to entertain her until bath time and minimize crying.  I also try to cook dinner during this time.  Not the easiest feat.  
6:30pm – E’s bath time.  Her favorite time of day

7:00pm – Nurse her and try to get her to sleep

And we do it all over again, tomorrow!

This is typical day for us.  We will sometimes venture out or have a Grandparent come over; but for the most part this is E and I’s life without Dad.

Of course, as soon as I hit publish on this post she will change everything.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Why I Make my own Baby Food

Now that E is starting solids, I want her to have and taste REAL foods.  I really have nothing against store bought/jarred baby food and it is definitely a route I would go if I had less time on my hands.  This may sound funny or silly but since I have been “making” her food since she was born (and even before that, I suppose) I wanted to keep the trend up.   I make dinner for Mike and I so what is so difficult about making my daughter food, too?  Seriously though, it is ten times easier than I thought it would be.

I also love the fact that I get to choose the ingredients and actually see/do the process from start to finish.  I select, wash, cut, steam, and puree it and I know there is no contamination.  I’m “processing” her foods but I am not buying and giving her processed foods.  The hope in doing this is that she will grow up loving the taste of non-processed and fresh foods instead of junky, processed foods.  Also, by introducing her to textures and flavors at 5.5-6 months (instead of giving her “one texture” purees and at a later age), I hope and believe that she will not be a picky eater into toddlerhood.

Processed and fast foods have become such an epidemic in our society, and I am victim to it.  My teenage years were spent eating fast food and drinking pop.  I fell into the slump of eating a lot of processed junk during my pregnancy and after having E and I am just now slowly transitioning back to eating whole organic foods, again.  I’m not going to withhold food from my daughter, but my hope is that she will CHOOSE healthy foods over junk.

I know… high hopes!

So far, E has only had sweet potatoes, avocado, and green beans.  She basically despised avocados (Heck, I hated them until I was in my 20’s), but seems to really like the potatoes and green beans.   I tried rice cereal about 3 or 4 weeks ago but she seemed to get really cranky the rest of the day so I basically skipped the cereals altogether.  I’ll introduce oatmeal later on. 

HATES avocados!
Theres is also the fact that making my own baby food is cost effective.  I can make 10-20 servings for the cost of 2 or 3 of those store bought pouches.  This isn't a huge reason I do this but it is a cherry on top!

The process is really quite easy:

1. Choose organic, in season produce
2. Peel skinned veggies and fruits
3. Wash thoroughly (before being cut and once it is cut)
4. Steam
5. Blend in a food processor or blender (adding cooking liquid to get the texture suitable for your baby’s age)
6. Divide into ice cube trays and freeze
7. Take food out of trays and place into freezer bags (veggies and fruits are good up to 3 months in the freezer)

The only two exceptions are bananas and avocados.  They do not need to cooked and can just be mashed up with a fork as long as they are ripe enough.  They also cannot be frozen.

Veggies need to be cooked until the child is 12 months old to reduce choking hazard.

Foods suitable for 4-6 month olds:

VEGGIES: sweet potatoes, green beans, and squash (acorn or butternut)

FRUITS: pears, apples, avocados, and bananas
GRAINS: whole grain organic cereals (oatmeal, rice, and barley)

Of course, always follow your instincts.  If you don't think your baby is ready for solids then wait.  E loves to breastfeed and nothing has changed from before we started solids.