Sunday, December 18, 2011

Outdoor Winter/Christmas Decoration - on the cheap!

I love natural outdoor decorations. I'm always trying to find something outside to decorate with. Today, I decided to take a few small branches from our tree, piece them together and then hang them on the porch.

For Halloween and Thanksgiving, I hung up some corn with ribbons around it. When I bought the ribbon, I made sure it would work for fall/winter. So after I tied the branches together I was able to re-use the same ribbon to save time and money.

Ok, here's how it's done.

First, trim some small branches off of your tree.... or your neighbors tree when they're not lookin' :)
I made the mistake of doing this without gloves.... in the words of my toddler "ouchies!"
I used three branches for each piece. I tied them together using some thin green wire, but almost anything  would work.

Create little hooks in the back....

This will allow you to hang it up of course....

Don't forget to attach the pretty bow, which I also did with wire. After you hang them up, you might need to trim them a bit to keep people from bumping into them. Again, ouchies....

Pine cones and red berries would make this adorable but sadly I have none.

So there ya have it! Outdoor decorations which was almost free. The ribbon was $1.00 each on clearance and I used it for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Winter/Christmas decor. Easy as that! :)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Play Room - Part 2

Remember this? It's the playroom. Progress report = Zero

Ok, I did add a pink bean bag chair and the room has carpet now. I wanted to start on the curtains but I cannot find yellow chevron fabric anywhere. I searched every store I could, even in different towns but came up with nothing. I did find some online but it's way more money than I'm willing to pay. Hopefully I will find some though. I'm not giving up.

Here are my ideas:

The blue above is the wall color, which is already done. (Benjamin Moore's Bahaman Sea Blue #2055-44)

Yellow Chevron fabric for curtains:

Decor Pad

Pink Bean Bag Chair for accent color (no, I did not buy this from Amazon but this is the same color):


World Map to either hang on the wall, or maybe find a rug:


I want to build this table:

Fabulous Finishes

Build this cute little chair/reading area and the puffs hanging from the ceiling, but in pink:

I love my apartment

Some type of chalkboard:

Just head on over to my pinterest for more ideas. Click here.

I'm also going to make a toy box and add some shelves. Oh, and I plan to use their hand/footprints as art. :)

All of the pictures are cited, of course. Just click on the link below each picture and you will go to the website.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Child Led Weaning

What is it? You allow your child to breastfeed for as long as they want to until they decide to stop on their own (this can occur between 2 - 4 years of age, although usually around 2). I decided to do this with Mimi even though I questioned whether or not it would work. When she approached 2 1/2 years of age and was still nursing (not constantly, but when she wanted to sleep) I started to get concerned. I was worried because I'm pregnant and I didn't really want to nurse two kids. She was actually starting to nurse MORE than usual for a few weeks and I was very discouraged. But then... bam... done. She stopped nursing one day. She nursed a tiny bit for a night or two (I didn't bother her about it) and then completely stopped..... all by herself.
No crying fits
No tantrums
No staying awake at night

So if you're wondering whether or not it works, I'm here to say that for me it did work. I cannot tell you how thankful I am that I stuck with it and didn't give up. Knowing that she stopped when she was nutritionally and emotionally ready really makes me happy.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Kitchen Curtains

After 1 year, I finally found fabric to make curtains with for my kitchen. Yay!!

I'm excited and hoping that I can actually sew them since I have no idea how to use my sewing machine.

Fingers crossed! I will post pictures after I finish them (hopefully this week).

Friday, September 23, 2011


I've only been using Rumparooz for a few days, but so far I'm very pleased with the results. I think I will be buying several of these for Emmett and Mimi. Unfortunately they are shockingly expensive but they work well and seem the most comfortable. I was very worried about the bulk but once it's on the baby and then you switch to the less bulky BumGenius 4.0, it really isn't THAT noticeable. 

The BumGenius 4.0 is probably my second favorite so I plan to buy a few of those as well. It's second because the insert moves around a bit more than I would like. It hasn't been enough to cause problems though and I love that they fit a bigger baby so well.

Rumparooz though, I have to say, I'm impressed. They are the ONLY diaper that will fit a newborn (we'll test this out in October) AND my 2 1/2 year old toddler. BG is too big for newborns, fuzzibunz is too small for my toddler (she can wear it, but it's snug) --- every diaper I try it is either one or the other, but Rumparooz fits all sizes. We'll see though, I could change my mind after trying them a bit longer. 

Also, the first thing I noticed about cloth diapers is that my daughter is more aware of when she's dirty. I really think this will help her potty train faster. As soon as the diaper was heavy with pee she immediately came to me fussing to be changed. She would have never done that with a disposable diaper. 

Good results so far!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cloth Diapers - The Beginning

The VERY beginning. I haven't started using them yet but I received them in the mail the other day. I washed them and tried them on my toddler.

Here's what I noticed right away:

--- Keep in mind, my kid is a little bit tall for her age, but not in any way chunky. ---
--- Also, I'm only trying snaps. ---

  1. Fuzzibunz One Size Pockets - Runs a tiny bit small. Barely fits my 2 1/2 year old, might fit my newborn but could be too big at first. VERY trim (the trimmest) and the pad holds still in the diaper pocket. Also, the adjustable elastic is kind of annoying to work with. I prefer to adjust the size with snaps instead (which isn't an option).
  2. BumGenius 4.0 Pockets - Would NEVER fit a new born. It would probably fit a baby 10lbs and up. Fits my 2 1/2 year old very well with room to spare, but the pad does move around a bit in the pocket. Pretty trim, but not as much as the Fuzzibunz.
  3. BumGenius Elemental One Size - Very easy to use, same fit as the other BG, also fairly trim. The pad inside is sewn in, which slows drying time, and it also moves around a lot (more than the 4.0) which I think would cause poopie accidents.
  4. Rumparooz One Size Pockets - Not in ANY way trim but fits my toddler perfectly and would fit a newborn as well. Very easy to snap on and work with and the pad holds still in the pocket. Has a poop canal of sorts to help keep the poop in but it could be difficult to spray out with a diaper sprayer.
  5. Best Bottoms (microfiber inserts)- Would probably fit a newborn, or at least 8lbs and above would be my guess. Runs the smallest of all the diapers (the Rumparooz sizes down to the smallest size, but sizes up to one of the largest) and I struggle to put it on my 2 1/2 year old. It also feels like the least comfortable diaper to me. The snaps touch the skin and that bothers me a bit. 

Hands down, my favorite is Rumparooz but the fact that it is SO bulky makes me nervous about buying more. My second favorite is probably BG 4.0 because it fits so well (but unfortunately will not fit a newborn). The Fuzzibunz, if it were bigger, would probably have been my first or second favorite but since it runs small it doesn't work well for us.

The Fuzzibunz and Best Bottoms barely fit my toddler. Think bikini underwear. Very low cut and doesn't cover the booty as well as you would like. The others would be more like regular, old fashioned undies. Rise hits right below the belly button and the booty is covered.

But of course I will use them all. I bought one of each (and won a few in give aways) to try them out before I invest in several. The last one I will check is the Blueberry one size and then I'm probably done.

I will keep you updated! :)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Play Room - A work in progress

As many of you already know, my husband and I have been working on a playroom for our son and daughter (mostly for our daughter since our son isn't born yet).

Here is the wall color we selected....

Wall Color - Benjamin Moore's Bahaman Sea Blue #2055-44 (click here for a better picture of the color than the one above)

It is absolutely gorgeous. Love it! My accent colors will be yellow, white and a bright pink (to make it a bit feminine). We're also going to be making a toy box some time soon, which I plan to paint and stencil. I will post photos and how-to instructions. AND we ordered carpet today. Nothing fancy though, just a soft tan/neutral carpet. I wanted something inexpensive since it's a play room, with specs in it to hide dirt (hey, kids are dirty), and neutral because I plan to use a lot of bright colors and I didn't want to go overboard. I will post photos as soon as it's been delivered and installed.

We've also ordered cloth diapers. I will be trying: Rumparooz, BumGenius 4.0, BumGenius Elemental (free), Best Bottom (free) and Fuzzibunz. I'm considering Blueberry as well, but we'll see how the others work out first. I will post more details after I receive them.

Progress is being made and I'm excited! I'm also stressed because I'm running out of time. We'll welcome the baby around October 24th. Yikes!

Also, baby name selected!! Our newest member to the family will be baby Emmett! I wanted to wait until he arrived before I named him, but I just couldn't wait any longer. :)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Baby Name Wizard: Book Review

As we all know, I'm having some trouble deciding on a baby name for our little boy (arriving in October). I do have several picked out though, so I think I'm good to go. When I see the baby, I have a feeling I will know the name. But during my name search, I found the book The Baby Name Wizard by Laura Wattenberg to be very helpful. It's written differently than most baby name books. Usually when you buy a baby book it has 10,000 names in a list format. This one definitely has fewer names, but it also comes with name suggestions. For example, if you like the name Oscar then you will probably like the names Julius, Max, Edgar, Victor, Lucy, Amelia and so on. These are actually labeled, "brother and sister" names because they go well together. So if you look up your current child's name, then you can branch off from there.

I wouldn't buy this as my one and only baby book though, unless I intended to use websites as well such as It doesn't have a ton of names, so it does limit you a bit. It's a trade off. You lose names, but it gives you ideas that lead to more names. If you are looking for a country/religion specific name, then this may not be the best book. It does have a lot of European and Biblical names, but if you flip to the Muslim or African names, it's almost non-existent.

To sum it up, while other baby books are just mindless lists, this one actually gives you suggestions and makes the search a little more interesting (and addictive even). I would recommend this book to anyone, but I would suggest buying another book with it or using the web.

Names I've researched thanks to this book:
  1. Emmett (in first place)
  2. Adam
  3. Eliot
  4. Theo
Just to name a few.

Do you have any great baby name resources to share?

I've also noticed that several people name their children after a relative. Is this something you did or plan to do? I did this with my first child, but I'm not so concerned with my second child. Any thoughts on this?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Naartjie Baby Clothes

Can you say adorable? I bought this on sale at Naartjie (pants too, but they didn't fit into the picture very well). This is one of my favorite stores to shop at, mostly because it's unique. I think most babies wear Carter's, so it's a nice change from the standard baby style (although I love Carter's too). I love that their outfits are so customizable. Did you see the two hats? This is the type of clothing they sell. You can decide which shirts, hats or pants to pair together. I bought two hats to switch out because they were so darn cheap. Also, in case I have a two-headed baby, I will be good to go. :)

I will warn you though, their clothes do run a bit large. For newborns, I would probably buy 0-3 months though and skip the smaller size. They grow out of their clothes quickly anyway. But for toddlers, I usually size down.

What are some of your favorite baby clothing brands?