29 April 2016

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! With all this nice weather, we've been playing outside as much as possible. Those long gone February days made a mom forget how easy the days can be with a little outside play.

Which brings me to these bubble wands.  We got them as a gift and they are so much fun. We just fill a bowl with dish soap and water and wait for someone to accidentally kick it ;). Loads of fun and pretty durable.  Lately, Marin and I will turn on the Disney station on Pandora or the Disney princess playlist on Apple Music playing NICE and loud and run around making bubbles.  So let's just make this a blanket apology to all our neighbors while we're at it because sometimes this involves little people in their skivvies.

Speaking of clothes, a couple weeks ago I retired some of the running clothes I've had since HIGH SCHOOL (yummy) and got a couple more pieces for working out. I noticed this top from the Gap got really high reviews, so I ordered two and totally see why the reviews were so high.  It is perfect for working out in hot weather and super comfy.

 I used these small and REALLY affordable cake stands for the girls' birthdays and loved the look.

And lastly, a couple favorite pics from the week because memories with these people are my forever favorites.  Also, when all else fails, walk down the street barefoot with yo princess wand and pet unicorn. ;)

22 April 2016

Brite's First Birthday Party

Yesterday the four of us celebrated this little nugget with a small dessert spread and frozen pizza.  And as you can see, it may be her first birthday party but it is clearly not her first rodeo; girl knows exactly what to do with cake.  Second child perks.  What a fun and beautiful birthday week we've had!  Thank you to everyone who celebrated our girls with us!  All the birthday wishes have been so kind.  Happy Friday, everyone!

21 April 2016

Brite Wren. One Year.

Imagine a Spring evening, just before sunset.  Imagine a warm breeze, the kind of breeze that causes you to think about peace and the One who created peace.  Imagine Him and the moments in life He gives you that whisper He loves you

If you can imagine these things, then you will know exactly what your entrance into this world and our family was. 

Oh we love you so, Brite Wren.

You spent your first year being smiley, wily, and sweet.  There were fussy days and wakeful nights but even those moments have been our greatest honor to be a part of.  Your life, precious one, is such a gift, every single minute.

Just after midnight on April 21st I got to hold you for the first time.  Looking into your eyes for the first time felt like meeting someone I already knew.  You were pure peace in a tiny body.  Even your cry was quiet.  I won’t ever forget those first days with you, rocking you and singing Winter Snow over and over and weeping at the sight of your beautiful little soul.  

How are we already here?  How are you already a year?  It has been the fastest year of my life.  Each day unfurls more about you that we grow to love and we can’t wait to watch you live all the life in front of you.  It will be so beautiful. 

The other day you face-planted into your food and lifted your head in a belly laugh.  You stick your tongue out to make us laugh.  You smile incessantly, with your whole face (even your eyebrows).  It will never be your responsibility to make us happy, but you do.  You make us smile every single day and we are the luckiest that you came to join the three of us. 

Happy Birthday, Brite Wren (little chicken, mushy girl, Bubba, Britey).  There is no one like you in this world.  Never forget that we love you and, most importantly, the Lord loves you and made you oh so special. 

18 April 2016

Marin's 3rd Birthday Party

On Saturday we celebrated Marin's third birthday with a Sleeping Beauty party. (So much yummy irony for the little lady who has never liked sleeping! ;) It was so good to watch our sweet princess be loved on by her family and a few of our neighborhood friends.  We are amazed by the gift she is to us and we are grateful for these precious THREE years with her.

She ate cake and pranced around with fairy wands the rest of the weekend, so I'm fairly sure she is feeling pa-retty special. Until your next birthday, our not-Sleeping Beauty.

17 April 2016

Marin. Three.

Yesterday, from the backseat of the car, you asked me if I would roll your window down so you could “Say hello to that big, beautiful, blue rain cloud.” 

“HIIIIII big butiful bwue cwoud!”  

 At the sound of your thunderous declaration, the memory of a nurse peaking into our hospital room the day you were born flashes through my mind. “Your baby has got some real pipes.”  

And from my rearview mirror, I see both my baby and my big girl.  You, being who you’ve always been, just more. 

During bedtime the other night you commanded, “Mommy, come here so I can give you a kiss.” You pursed your lips with loads of concentration.  And I remember it wasn’t too long ago when you still gave baby kisses with your mouth wide open.  There is even an evolution in your kisses.

Tight lips.
Eyes looking up and to the right, sometimes closed.

Then this week I had to apologize for a lack of patience during bath time antics. “It’s okay. I give you, Mommy.”  A little lady with a heart that FORGIVES is in our midst.  

And in a flash I see my big girl and my baby…you being who we hoped you would be, and more.

You spend your days in a glorious oblivion, bounding from one activity to the next.  Play doh, repunzel castle, the swingset, twirling, changing your outfit five times.  
You are wary and wild, a strong-willed rule follower, silly and serious.     

There are so many “I want to do it on my own’s”
And “Mommy, I need help!” We are on your little independence rollercoaster. 

You are a bright and loving big sister.  We couldn’t be more proud.  You so genuinely adore this little creature who came to share in all the affection this year, and your baby sister lights up when you are around, watches your every move. 

And while you bound around by your heartstrings, Daddy and I spend our days trying to capture it all, our baby and our big girl.

Happy THIRD birthday, precious Marin Elizabeth.  You are so very much unlike anyone we’ve ever known.  You have had our complete gaze since you came screaming our way three years ago and you always will.

Our lives and this world would have a big gaping {pink, no doubt;) hole with out you in it, precious one.

And guess what? WE LOVE YOU. That’s what.

Happy Birthday, little moo.   

08 April 2016

Friday Favorites

Or as Marin calls them, "faveowits." I will miss her baby words so much when they are gone.  If you follow on Instagram then you've seen me mention that both Marin and Brite have birthdays this month, making April a nostalgia hurricane and me a ball of mom mush.  Moving on...

Some friends of ours GAVE us (so generous!) their swing set and it is such a game changer.  We play on it no less than six times a day, and one of my all-time favorite things right now is watching Marin on this swing, learning to pump her legs and giggling. You know, just being pure magic on a Spring day.  This week, right around the moment I took this picture, she asked me, "Mommy, am I your sunshine girl?" So I'll be over here on this ant pile crying.

Some other favorites from this week, not quite in the aforementioned unicorn section but still spectacular, have included:

This Beautiful Writers podcast recommended by a friend.  I've only listened to a couple so far, but it is really good, especially if you have an interest in the dynamics of writing.

Also, have you guys watched Jimmy Fallon and Melissa McCarthy's lip sync battle yet? I can't handle it. SO funny.

And on the topic of funny, a friend sent me a clip of THIS mom talking about "the amazing mother chart." I laughed so hard because, yes, there may be a two-day-old banana somewhere in my car.  It's good to remember that life and motherhood is messy sometimes, so let's just laugh about it -mk?

As some may know, we LOVE Trader Joe's for many reasons, but mostly because they are super affordable and carry lots of healthy organic options. Anywho, we tried this TJ's fig butter on port salut cheese and DELICIOUS.  Definitely worth a try if cheese is your thing as it is ours.  ;)

This week, I ordered this top in black from Kate Hudson's brand Fabletics. They are offering 50% off your first Fabletics purchase, so I got it for a little less than $10.00.  A good friend recommended their work out clothes to me and I'm pumped to try this new tank out!  Can't beat some of their entire outfit discounts either.

And lastly for these Friday "faveowits".. I'm having so much fun prepping for Marin's princess party next weekend and found this sweet little crown from Anthropologie for her to wear.  Their toy/kids section is super cool if you've never checked it out.

I think that about does it. Happy Friday, friends! I hope you and yours have a great weekend!

07 April 2016

Brite Eats: Mini Meals for 9 months+

We started introducing baby food pouches and purees to Brite when she was seven months old. I was actually pretty excited to introduce alternatives to nursing since she has always been a lover of the leche; morning, noon and night. ;) Honestly, I thought she would think baby food was the best thing on the planet, but NOPE. Every now and then she would stomach a slurp or two followed by a face like she had just downed a shot of whiskey. Needless to say, there were lots of laughs shared between the rest of us over bowls full of mush. After a couple weeks of sour-faced food sessions I decided to try skipping the baby pouches and head straight to table foods (which is pretty much what we did with Marin too). Brite was in squishy noodle heaven! Turns out the girl likes to feed herself. Nothing like a baby occupied for 40 minutes, merrily pinching each tiny Cheerio. Not like I did anything productive with those 40 minutes because HELLO BABY PINCHING EACH TINY CHEERIO. Heart eye emoji.

The girls and I have hit a pretty good groove for now with meals they like during the day, especially because I can usually feed Brite the same things the rest of us are eating, just cut into manageable bites. And since I always love to get ideas from other moms about what their kids like to eat, I thought I would share some of the mini meals we make for Brite these days. The meals below are the ones she has eaten the last couple weeks, but we've been giving her most of these since she turned 8 months. 

Breakfast: Kashi blueberry waffles, Plum brand cereal bars, eggs, Trader Joe's Honey Nut O's, Plum brand Oatmeals (I let the bowl sit for a minute after making it so that it hardens enough for Brite to be able to eat little oatmeal balls on her own. Make sense?), lots of fruits (especially banana and blueberries), organic yogurt puffs

Lunch and Dinner: cheesy mashed potatoes, cheese (shredded or sliced), turkey, avocado, beans, steamed butternut squash with feta cheese sprinkled on top (A BRITE FAVE!), cooked noodles, steamed broccoli florets, frozen veggies (I give them to her frozen and she loves them. Maybe feels good on the teeth?), TJ's white cheddar mac n cheese, Earth's Best Sesame Street cheddar crackers, cucumber, English muffin with melted cheese on top. I also LOVE making crock-pot meals because everything you throw in those ends up being tender enough for everyone to enjoy. 

Meals around here aren't always balanced or anywhere near perfect or 100% organic, but we are giving it our best. ;)  If we are on-the-go, I will sometimes "convince" Brite she wants a pouch, but for the most part her meals include the options pictured above.  Hope this sparks ideas for you and your little one.  I would love to know what you feed your babes!