Thursday, May 28, 2015

Triple Birthday Party

Last weekend we had a party to celebrate 3 birthdays! Ryan turning 5, Lucas turning 3, and cousin Bella turning 2. This birthday party was really casual and low-key. No theme, no invitations, no major decorations.....just family, food and fun.

I had a couple helpers in the kitchen to make party desserts.
We made homemade chocolate buttercream frosting and sandwiched it in between graham crackers. We froze them and ate them cold. (My mom made these with homemade vanilla buttercream frosting when I was young and they were my FAVORITE childhood treat!) I also made cupcakes using 100 Days of Real Food's recipe for Carrot Applesauce Muffins (Luke's favorite) and topped it with her Whipped Cream Cheese frosting. These cupcakes contained no refined sugar but I still thought they were delicious!
Can you believe Jenna is two months older than her cousin Lyla? They are practically the same size now!
 Adam BBQ'd some chicken and the kids played with water balloons.
Lucas had a major meltdown halfway through the party and ended up falling asleep. Turns out he was getting sick with a croupy virus. No fun!
The highlight of the party was most definitely the cheeseburger piƱata. I found this little guy at Target and he provided hours of fun.
I filled him with fruit snacks, kazoos, organic lollipops, playdoh, and chocolate coins.
And Adam ended the party like this........
I'd call that a successful triple birthday party! Happy Birthday to Ryan, Bella and Lucas.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Jenna: 6 Months

Happy half birthday Jenna!
At 6 months old you are still just as sweet as can be. You are such a happy, content baby. This month you became much more wiggly and curious about the world around you. You aren't scooting around yet, but you roll all over the place.  (You've mastered flipping over while I change your diaper. Frustrating but so cute!) You love being sat up to see better.
You have absolutely mastered your eye/hand/mouth coordination. You love reaching out to grab toys and put them in your mouth. You cut your first two teeth this month, right in the front of your mouth on the bottom. You feel them with your tongue ALL the time.

We think you have Adam's skin color. Your face gets red really easily and you are extremely fair skinned. You even got your first sunburn on your arms the other day. I'm admittedly not that great about putting sunscreen on your brothers, but I'll have to be better about it with you.
You are still a great sleeper. Two solid naps during the day, ranging from 45 minutes to sometimes closer to 2 hours. You are nursed to sleep by 7:30 or 8pm most nights. You usually sleep through the night until around 5am, when I nurse you and put you back in your crib to sleep until around 7am. I don't mind that 5am wakeup call at all. You are so happy when you see me come into your room and I love that quiet time in the morning with just the two of us.
You eat dinner with the family now, sitting in your little lamby seat next to the table. I'm hoping to transition you to a high chair as soon as you can sit up on your own. So far you are open to trying new foods but I wouldn't say you love eating. You do seem to really enjoy sweet potatoes though! So far you have eaten brown rice, sweet potatoes, avocado, peas, green beans and butternut squash.
We introduced you to the exersaucer and the doorway jumper this month. You have so much fun sitting in them, seeing everything from a new perspective!
Because you are such a happy baby you smile a lot. It's like when you see a face looking at you, you just can't help but smile back. I love seeing your cute smile. But on occasion your smile does take you from cute to......kind of crazy. Here is an example. See? You just can't contain yourself.
You are still my smallest baby, weighing somewhere between 14 and 15 pounds right now. At 6 months both your brothers weighed 16 and a half pounds! You have a longer, less round head than your brothers, but your cheeks and chins are still nice and chubby. You still don't have a lot of hair but what you do have ia a light sandy blonde.
I love seeing your little personality beginning to emerge. You're starting to get a little bit silly and playful. Sometimes while I'm nursing, you will stop, look up at me and smile, then pretend to nurse again. Then you'll look at me and giggle and smile. Then go back to nursing. You are too cute!
I love you sweet baby Jenna Mae! (AKA: Goo-Goo-Mae, Jenna Mae Ah-Goo, Sweetness)


Here is a fun comparison of you and your brothers, all at the age of 6 months.
I definitely see similarities between all 3 of you!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

My Extrovert Child

Lucas exhausts me. And until recently, I couldn't exactly pinpoint why. Sure, he's a demanding toddler who has endless energy. He has a big personality. He would exhaust anyone. But for some reason his personality really drains me.
I am somewhat of an introvert. After being with an extrovert for a while I feel like I need a little break. I need to go and collect my thoughts and stop talking. I need to not always be "on". My brain starts to feel a bit scrambled when I don't have a chance to be by myself and just think. It's like I get overloaded with information and my head starts to feel foggy. When I have a chance to be by myself, even for 20 minutes, it helps to recharge me.
Lucas is an extrovert. He needs someone to listen to him, talk to him, look at him, validate what he's doing, entertain him, laugh at him and give him attention. ALL DAY LONG. He never goes off by himself to just play quietly for a few minutes. He wants to be around me at all times. And it's not enough just being near me. If he is talking, I must look at him and actually pay attention. AT ALL TIMES. If I dare to turn my head or act at all distracted, he will grab my face and pull it back so I am looking at him. If I say "just a minute" he throws a fit that will turn into a tantrum. Lucas has been labeled a "handful" many times. But I'm finally realizing he is more than just a demanding toddler. He is a true extrovert.
I'm sure his personality will serve him well some day. And even now his extrovert personality can be really funny and entertaining. But oh my goodness, sometimes I just want a little break! I can't count how many times I have asked Lucas to "PLEASE JUST STOP TALKING FOR A MINUTE!".
I'll appreciate it someday when he's a grumpy silent teenager, right??

Do you have an extrovert child? How do you handle it if you are more of an introvert?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Sweetness

My new nickname for Jenna is "Sweetness". I go in to get her in the morning and she is just so happy and sweet that I can't help saying "Hi Sweetness!". I mean, can't you tell how sweet she is just by looking at her pictures?
 And of course my boys like to be sweet from time to time!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Weighty Wednesday: GOAL!

I have finally reached my goal weight! (In full transparency I was 1 pound below my goal weight on Monday. As of this morning my scale is showing I am 1 pound over my goal weight. Whatever....I reached it!)

Since I gave birth on November 21st I have lost 55 pounds. I am officially a few pounds below the weight I was at when I got pregnant with Jenna.

I can fit into all of my pre-pregnancy clothes, although I wouldn't say my body looks exactly the same as it used to. I seem to have a heavier "nursing mom" look to me until I hit the 1-year mark with my kids, and then I feel like I look like myself again.

I lost the weight by eating smaller portions, less sugar, more produce and healthier grains, walking more, and nursing my baby.

It feel so good to have all that weight gone! Bye-bye Weighty Wednesday!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Stitch Fix Review #15

It's time for another Stitch Fix review and I need your help this month! I can't make up my mind about a couple of the items I received, and I'm looking for some opinions on what I should keep.
You may have noticed I've been doing these reviews more frequently lately, and that's because I had a little bit of Stitch Fix credit burning a hole in my pocket. I am also still in need of some hot weather clothes, so I decided to receive my boxes on a more frequent basis. As always, if you want to try Stitch Fix for yourself I would love if you used my referral link here.
 (Once you sign up you get your own referral link to share with people, so you can start earning credit for yourself!)
 Here is the note from my stylist this month:

Hi Stephanie! I am so excited to be styling for you again! I cannot wait for you to try on the jeans I found for you by Kut From The Kloth. They are so on trend for spring with their distressed details (but no holes!) and cropped length. I like to wear them cuffed at the bottom and paired with a bright colored top, like the Priya tank by Brixon Ivy. I think you are going to really like the floral pattern on this top and the knit back makes it casual enough to wear to the park with your kids or to a baseball game. The jeans will also be fun to wear with the Sanchez top by Papermoon. I picked this top for you because I think the colors will be perfect for your complexion. The Kamile dress by Gilli is a great, casual summer dress that will be a go-to piece on hot days. Have a blast trying everything on! Enjoy! Heather
I really need to enlist Adam to take my pictures next month. These photos make most of the clothes look kind of washed out, in my opinion. Oh well, on to the clothes!

Kate Distressed Boyfriend Jean by Kut From The Kloth
I was excited to try on these jeans because I've been loving all the light wash denim I've seen lately. I was also really curious to see how the "boyfriend" style would look on me. It is a slightly more relaxed fit than regular skinny jeans. These looked cute from the front but didn't flatter me very well once I turned around. They made me look a little flat and saggy, and that's not the look I'm going for! I like the edginess of the distressing. I am not opposed to wearing distressed denim, however, I didn't want any actual holes in my jeans. Unfortunately these have a pretty sizeable hole right over the knee. I'm almost positive I'll be returning these, but I will continue to ask for jeans from Stitch Fix. I have heard great things about the different brands of denim they offer.

Sanchez Scoop Neck Top by Papermoon
I like the colors in this tank top. The print is very unique and unlike anything I have ever seen. The one thing that is a bit strange about it is the hemline at the bottom. The way that it lays on my body makes it kind of stick out in places and I'm not sure it's the most flattering cut. What do you all think of it?

Priya Abstract Floral Print Knit Back Tank by Brixon Ivy
I immediately loved this shirt. I was drawn to the pretty floral pattern, and I love the mix of patterns and fabrics on the shirt. The grey knit back does make it more casual, which I really like. However, I am not totally sold on how the top looks on me. I feel like this keeps happening....the items I initially love don't end up looking the best on me. And the ones I'm not sure about happily surprise me once I put them on. Stitch Fix is really helping me pay more attention to what is flattering on my skin and body type. I need your help with this tank top. I think I need to try it on again with a different pair of jeans, maybe my darker skinny jeans. Advice please!

Kamile Jersey Ruched Detail Dress by Gilli
This dress has a lot of things going for it. Beautiful color, soft jersey fabric, and a very flattering cut. It draws me in right below me chest at the narrowest part of my body. It hides my hips well. However, it doesn't hide my post-baby belly pooch too well. It's perfect if I suck in my stomach, but once I relax it makes me look a little bit pregnant. Be honest with me here. Is the dress flattering? And is this poochy post-third-baby tummy ever going to go away?

Elaine Ikat Print Pocket-Front Knit Shirt by Market and Spruce
This top was a big surprise. I liked it out of the box but felt like the colors were a little washed out for me. But then I tried it on and loved it. It is one of those shirts that I just feel really comfortable in. The knit fabric is SO soft. And I love the unique ikat print. The colors are a salmon pink and a soft grey. I was wearing my cobalt blue jeans (first ever Stitch Fix purchase!) when I tried this top on, and I loved the two paired together. I think this top would also look nice with light wash or dark denim, as well as my white pants. I'm definitely leaning towards keeping this one.

So what do you think I should keep this month? And what kind of clothes would you request from your stylist if you were trying out Stitch Fix for the first time? Let me know!