Monday, January 28, 2013

Harper's First Swim!

                                                                      Happy Monday!!
Is anyone else counting down the days to warmer, sunnier, non snow days? I know I am.
Cabin fever is such a bitch! I wish Harp's and I could go on walks or even just go outside without being frostbitten...
Well to cure our winter blues we went swimming for the first time! (Second time to a pool but she slept through the first time.) My Mom took us to Lifetime Fitness where she teaches yoga and they have a huge indoor pool. Harper loves bath time so I figured she would love the pool water too. Yup, she loved it. She actually loved watching all the other kids the most but it was very fun and I cant wait to go again hopefully this weekend. I also want to start swimming lessons but I might wait until the fall just to give us something to do once it gets chilly again. I am also obsessed with baby swimsuits! Harper got her first bikini before she was even born. Of course she had to wear it to the pool when she was about five weeks old but she just slept in the stroller the whole time and we only stayed for about an hour. She now has three swimsuits and one was a gift from our amazing friend Tara, who I met on Instagram. She sent Harper the cutest swimsuit and I cant wait for her to wear it!!

First time in my yellow polka dot bikini at 5 weeks old.

 First time swimming. Six months old.

Excuse my nastiness... I cant believe I went in public with a bikini on... but I'm glad I will have those pictures of us someday! I cant wait for Summer 2013. I will have a one year old!! omg...

Friday, January 25, 2013

0-6 Month Needs for Baby & Momma!

I have officially survived 6 months of being a Mom!!
The best job I have ever had. I have been so blessed to have been able to stay home with her since she was born but that is soon changing as I am going back to finish my last five weeks of cosmetology school. (Insert tears and depression.) Luckily she will be staying with my Mom and BF because they have flexible schedules and will make it work for those short five weeks.
Oh and by the way. I changed my blog design for the third time since starting this blog only a couple months ago. I think nap time boredom gets the best of me sometimes!

On to the reason for my post. As I've said before, I love seeing other Momma bloggers "favorites." They usually influence my "must have every baby product" buying habit and really helped me deciding products to purchase when I was pregnant. So instead of putting everything i have tried and used for the last six months, (that would be a cluttered mess) I picked my top essential things I have used pretty much every day since we brought miss princess home from the hospital up until now. I like products that are versatile with every age and stage because these babies grow so damn fast how can you possibly keep up!! Growing out of clothes and diapers is enough change for Me... Of course her car seat and stroller and very important essentials but these are things that are not a must need but a must have!

Boppy: If you nurse, this is essential. I personally only used this for about two months until nursing was just second nature to Me, but then used it for playtime to help her sit up until she could do so on her own and I now use it as a pillow in bed.
Bumbo: I know this was recalled, but people, come on, use your brains! Honestly leaving your kid on a table unattended in this is just common sense shit. Sorry, rant over. But I think the bumbo is very useful for unassisted sitters and I still use it now for dinner time when I don't use the high chair.
MAM Pacifiers: Love, Love, Love. I was very hesitant to use pacifiers at first because I was worried about nipple confusion but then at about two weeks old I used them just for nap time and bed time and occasionally fussy moments. These seem to stay in her mouth the best and they are the cutest in my opinion. Life savers!!
Sophie: I know this is on every ones favorite list but it really is the shit! We got this when she was five weeks old and she didn't really care about it, but everyday she seemed to notice it and like it more and more and now its our go to toy. This damn giraffe can do no wrong! I would have bought this thing if it was 40 dollars. This is a must.
Cat Teether Rattle: This was Harper's very first toy ever! Awww :) I hooked it on her car seat and she would stare at it, and to this day it is still one of her favorites. She loves chewing on the teether parts and it has crinkly noises, it rattles, and has a mirror on the back. I call it the "sun cat" lol. We love our Sun Cat!
Fisher Price Swing: The only other way my child will sleep besides my arms is this swing! The first few days we were home she slept in this at night, but now we co sleep. But she still takes 2-3 naps a day in this beauty. To be honest I really wanted the 4moms mamaroo, but I still like this Fisher Price one a lot. Its very cute, it has music, and you can change the position of the swing. The only downside is that it takes up so much room and cant be moved around. But all in all a swing is a swing and I am grateful for swings! 

I also wanted to add a Mommy essential list because hello if it wasn't for us there would be no baby to make a list for. These are most used baby related products of the last seven months!

Caffeine: They should just give you an IV of caffeine immediately after giving birth! Bye sleep, hello exhaustion! The only thing that gets me out of bed in the morning (besides a crying baby) is knowing I am going to go drink my morning coffee, and then my pop addiction follows (specifically coke) for the rest of the day. I know they say to be careful about the caffeine intake while nursing but I have never had a problem with it but I also only probably have my cup of coffee and a pop or two the whole day so its not like I'm chugging can after can all day, (although I have considered it.)
Mother's Milk Tea: I started drinking this when H was around three months old because my supply totally leveled off and I got freaked out and I thought I was drying up. Later to realize that my body was just finally regulating my supply after knowing Harper's eating habits. Isn't the body amazing!! This really does help to boost supply though and I still use it a lot just to maintain the girls. It taste weird and smells like black licorice which i hate, but is an amazing alternative to fenugreek.
Backpack Diaper Bag: I tried the shoulder diaper bag, I tried the cross body diaper bag, but the backpack is my favorite right now. Yeah, not really the chicest and this one is not even a diaper bag, but its the most convenient for me. My sister got me this bag (mine is a flowery print and way cuter) and its perfect because its a canvas material so I can easily wash it and it was $40 which is amazing! Go get yourself a backpack and save your sanity. 
Nursing Tank: I live in this nursing tank and sports bras. I'm all about comfort and accessibility and this does the job perfectly!
Lansinoh Nursing Pads: I went through boxes of these for the first couple months!! Holy cow!!! (literally COW.) No one told me about this leaky mess my life was coming too... I learned my lesson the hard way when I went to Babies R Us when Harper was three days old. It was literally maybe 45 minutes after leaving the house and I felt my shirt all wet, looked down, and yes yes it was soaked! We left immediately with these pads in hand. I wore these everyday for at least three to four months and now I only wear them if I go out in public and always, always have extras in your bag because you will soak through them early on in the game! I like this brand the best because they fill up like a diaper and they don't stick to your nipples like other brands. I know sorry TMI but its the truth!
Medela Harmony Breast Pump: So this bad boy was what I was going to BRU for the day I became a waterfall. I was trying to start a stash right away so I just got this super easy manual pump for the early days when I didn't know what I was doing. (I still don't...) I now have an electric one that I will be using at school but this one works great and its easy to use and take on the go. Plus, I love anything Medela. 

As I sit here typing this, I just realized my whole life revolves around boobs! What has my life come too? A couple years ago I was trying to find the perfect shirt and bra to make my boobs look bigger as I get ready to go out with my friends, and now I'm laying in bed with my sweet baby girl telling the world about my boobs. HA! I wouldn't trade this life for anything. Happy Friday Night!!! :)

Here's my new SEVEN month old! tear...

Friday, January 18, 2013

Easy Sweet Tooth Remedy!!

I'm on a homemaking roll this week! First, sewing, now baking? OK not really baking but I did microwave the almond bark doesn't that count for something? HA! Anyways, I have been on a "dip everything in chocolate" kick. It started when I made Oreo Balls last week. I have had them before but it was my first time ever making them and it was so easy! Then I had leftover almond bark and 6 leftover oreos so I decided I would dip the oreos too. Didn't want them to feel left out. They were also delish. A little rich, but just enough to only have one a day to curb my cravings. My Mom noticed my chocolate dipping kick and bought more almond bark, this time chocolate flavored. The oreo balls and oreos were dipped in the white chocolate bark. (I forgot to mention I have a sweet tooth the size of Texas and it needs to be fed multiple times a day hence all the chocolate dippings.) So yesterday after I had eaten the last oreo, I was thinking what I already had at home to dip in this heavenly chocolate. Ritz Crackers duh! :) We always have Ritz crackers in the house because I eat them for pretty much breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Breakfast Ritz: dipped in peanut butter. Lunch Ritz: crackers covered with melted cheese. Dinner: same as lunch. LOL. Okay so I don't really eat that as meals, more just like snacks in my day. I love eating crackers though and they are so easy to eat while trying to entertain a six month old all day because I hate having to cook meals that take forever. No thanks! I need quick and easy. And I am too lazy... That is why I am always pinning and trying to find the easiest recipes to make with very few ingredients or supplies I already have at the house. Some might disagree, but for some recipes, its almost easier and cheaper to go to a restaurant and eat that meal then to go out, buy all the ingredients, and then slave away in the kitchen! Props to you if you can do that, but that is not realistic for my family and I would way rather eat out then at home (for the most part.)
This is the easiest way to make a sweet, salty, crunchy, peanut buttery yummy! 

-Almond Bark. I used half of the square.
-Ritz Crackers. I ended up using almost 3 packages for the amount of chocolate I melted.
-Peanut Butter
-Sprinkles. For cuteness.

-Parchment paper or foil. (I ran out of parchment paper so had to use foil)
- Glass bowl to melt bark

You might also need a cute helper!

Give me that cup!
Mom help!
She has a water obsession.

Thank you for the show Harper!!
Okay, on to the food!

Make mini peanut butter sandwiches with the Ritz crackers.

Melt chocolate until smooth.

Dip crackers in the chocolate. I only dipped mine halfway because sometimes its too rich for me and not so messy.

Dunzo! I only made 15 sandwiches and then just dipped individual crackers because I had so much leftover chocolate and I didn't want it to go to waste. I ended up with another foil sheet filled with single dipped crackers.

 I sprinkled mine with sprinkles just to make them look cute! Make sure if you use sprinkles you sprinkle them almost right away because the almond bark dries super fast!

I tried these sugar sprinkles first and they don't work! It melted into the chocolate if you sprinkle them on top right away but I then sprinkled them on again when the chocolate was cooler and they showed up more. 

See what I mean?

If you ever need a quick and easy sweet tooth fixin this is where its at! 

I think the little Miss snuck a couple when I wasn't looking! Look at that belly!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Legging Tutorial!!

Who wants to learn how to create the cutest baby ever! Kidding, that would be disgusting and very inappropriate, I meant cutest baby leggings ever!! Silly me ;)

Welcome to my first tutorial! Don't judge my terrible skills but I tried, and I am actually very proud of myself. Go Me!
These baby legging are c/o Small Fry Blog. They posted THIS easy peasy DIY tutorial yesterday, and now i am obsessed. I want to run out to Forever 21 right now and pick up every body con skirt they sell in every print! Anyways I happened to have an old one that was stuffed in a tub under my bed and, Ta-Da, new leggings for Harper Girl! (It looks cuter on her anyways!) So here is my tutorial on it. Don't judge me... I tried my best and know I left out some parts but here goes nothing... I also made a headband out of the scrap material and a little flower to go on the hip to make them more girly. Thank You Small Fry Blog for my newest sewing obsession!

What You Need
-Old stretchy pencil skirt
-Leggings for pattern
-Sewing Machine
For Flower and Headband
-needle and thread
-extra material

The bodycon skirt I used. Its a size small from Forever 21.

These are the leggings I used as my pattern and are from Target and are size 6 months.

Step 1:
I placed the leggings on top of the skirt. If you have a fabric pencil you can trace your pattern out onto the skirt but I just decided to eyeball mine. I also pinned the leggings to the skirt before I cut so they would stay in place better. Make sure you are lining the leggings up with the cuff of the skirt down!!

Step 2:

Cut the outside and inside thighs like this. I would recommend cutting at least 1/4" more for room to sew your seam. These leggings are also getting a little small for Harper so I wanted these new ones to last longer, that's why I didn't cut exactly to size. Also, I'm not the most precise sewer so I need all the extra material I can get!

Step Three:
 Once you've finished cutting, un pin the pattern from the cut out skirt. Now you will have 2 pieces of the skirt. Place the 2 pieces together right sides out and pin around edges. You don't have to use the pins but I think pinning gives you more control, especially with those pesky stripes. I tried lining them up perfectly and it took me forever and then as soon as I started sewing, that perfect lining up went out the door!

Step Four:

Sew! Sew the seams down both outer thighs and the inner thighs. I left the bottom of the leggings raw because I suck at hemming but I didn't like how it looked so unfinished so I decided to add a cuff... 

If you decide not to add the cuff your done!! How frickin easy was that! I also thought of something when I was done. I wish I have not sewn the cuff of the skirt down, Instead I should have pinned it up (after cutting the leggings out of it down) so that I could adjust the cuff when shes wearing them. Does that make sense? But anyways, here's how I added the cuff. I used some scrap material that was laying around from when I make my baby legs and I used the same technique. 

Leftover scrap material from baby legs.
I fold these (individually) inside themselves so they look like this...

Then I line these cuffs up to the bottom of the legging leg so that all the raw edges are lined up. You will have to stretch the legging material to fit because the cuff width is a lot smaller.

I then sew around the edge of all the lined up raw edges and you have a perfect cuff! OK just kidding, its NEVER perfect, but after alot of practice it is almost perfect. I think the cuff adds a little more to the leggings. 

Finished Product!!

 With the matching headband and flower detail I added.

I'm in LOVE! The tutorial on Small Fry is a lot simpler, but I just thought I'd show the process of my first pair. I hope this made some sense and if anyone tries this tutorial let me know I want to see!!!

For the Headband, I just took two pieces of extra fabric and sewed them together to fit Harper's head size then I used THIS (the words are in a different language but I just followed along with the pictures, and its pretty self explanatory.) tutorial from Pinterest to create the little flower petals which i used as bows, Then just hand sewed the bow on to the headband with another piece of scrap fabric as the middle part. and the flower detail I did in the same way. Just made some petals from the tutorial and strung them all together on one thread and then cut tiny small strips and sewed them on top of the flower for the flower middle and then hand sewed the flower onto the pants. Pretty easy, just took pretty much my whole morning, (along with entertaining the princess) but I'm pretty proud of myself for using pretty much the whole skirt! 

Here's the star of the show in her new leggings. I think she likes them!

I don't know about this bow Mom...
Okay, never mind, I like it too!