Monday, July 28, 2014

Jumping on the Nordstrom Sale Bandwagon

Ummm....I confess that I've never really shopped Nordstrom because I just felt as though it was out of my league.  I know...I know...stupid.  I just thought it was expensive and fancy and not "me."

That was until I won a $75 gifcard from Jessica and had reason to shop there.

I realized it's not "out of my league," you get what you pay for, and the sales are amaze!  I've already spent my $75 giftcard, but I have a feeling some of these goodies might make there way to my doorstep soon, too.

nordstrom sale

What are your favorites?

Friday, July 25, 2014

My Favorite "Mom" Apps

As a new mom there are many questions and sometimes you don't think to ask them at the most opportune times.  In fact, a lot of my questions were thought up around 3 a.m. in the middle of nursing or at 6 a.m. when I was laying back down for a morning nap with baby.

So, the ones that I didn't write down in the moment and forgot to ask the doctor/lactation consultant/nurse I went hunting for.  Lucky for me (and you) the age of the smartphone is here and with it, a plethora of tools and information at fingertips.

Here are just a few of my favorite "mom apps" that I've found to be helpful along the way.

My Pregnancy Today (free)
This app provides information about what is happening within the female body at each stage of pregnancy.  It lets users see how big the baby is and gives tips for healthy habits throughout pregnancy.  *It is important to note that this is based on a typical pregnancy.

My Baby Today (free)
Once the baby is born this app, also created by BabyCenter, keeps users updated on what to expect in regards to monthly milestones and provides information regarding feeding, sleeping, etc.
*It is important to note that this is based on average babies.

What to Expect (free)
This app does exactly what it claims to do: informs users of what to expect at each stage of pregnancy/motherhood.  They also provide fertility and pregnancy trackers. (Found here)

BabyConnect (free)
Any nursing mother needs this app.  It can also be purchased and used by daycares, nannies, and preschools.  It helps the user keep track of sleep patterns, feeding times, dirty diapers, etc.  All the things parents need to know at doctor appointments.

Baby Sleep (free)
This app plays lullabies for a period of time.  Perfect for soothing baby while out and about.

Disney Junior (free with option to purchase more)
This app contains episodes of shows seen on Disney Jr.  It is interactive and users can purchase more episodes for viewing.

FreePrints (free)
This app allows users a certain amount of free prints (delivered to your door) of photos each month.  Perfect way to decrease the amount stored on the phone and a quick, inexpensive way to update the family album at home.

Zulily/Woot (free)
Both apps provide users great deals on all sorts of baby gear, clothing for the family, jewelry, toys, games, and decor.

Target Mobile/Cartwheel (free)
These apps save money and time while shopping at Target.  See how I use these apps to save my family money here.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Mommy Essentials

You may or may not have noticed that last month (and this month) I didn't do the milestone must-haves for mommy and baby like I'd done here, here, here, here, and here.

I realized that when I was pregnant it wasn't convenient to see a monthly list of items that came in handy.  In fact, I would much rather have seen a cumulative list of necessities.  I wish I'd had one to go by when registering for items.  As a first time mom you really don't know what you need.  And stores and companies would love to have you think you need all the pink and blue things.

So here is my necessity list for the first 6 months baby is in your life.  Things I could not (or would not want to) live without the first 6 months of being a mom.

baby needs 0-6 mos

There are obvious items missing from the list like a pump, bottle warmer, etc.  I wanted to accumulate a list of things that you might not think about in the excitement of preparing for baby.

Feel free to add your necessities in the comments below!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My Feel-Good Pants

I went shopping with Morgan and the babes at the outlets two weeks ago.  I'm so glad we got together because her moving date suddenly moved up and by moved up I mean she's gone now.  Tear.

I've been on the hunt for the perfect pair of distressed boyfriend jeans and when I saw these on the clearance rack at JCrew, I thought they might be it!  I hunted through the pairs that were hanging searching for my size.  I settled on this pair just knowing they wouldn't fit.  Don't you hate that?

Imagine my surprise when I put them on in the fitting room and they not only slid up over my soccer thighs, but they buttoned!

A dressing room selfie moment if there ever was one.

So, these pants are deemed my feel-good pants.  They are comfy and it feels pretty darn good to be able to wear them when I thought I couldn't.
Top: GAP outlet (similar, similar,), Jeans: JCrew Factory (similar)

Oh!  And I chopped off my hair.  It was a reward, remember?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Life Hacks Every Mom Should Know

There are a few tricks I've picked up since CT was born in December that make life a little easier.  Whether you're a mom or not, these will save you time and make you come across a little more domesticated than you may have time to be.

Double up on mattress liners/sheets in the crib.  My mom told me to save time she used to put a mattress cover, sheet, mattress cover, sheet on the crib.  That way if baby has an accident in the middle of the night, you just take the top sheet and mattress cover off without having to remake the whole crib.

Slice a lemon and add it to a pitcher of Crystal Light lemonade.  People will assume you spent a lot of time making home-pressed lemonade and it will taste more authentic.

Use vinegar in the laundry.  I've always used a little splash of vinegar in with the dog's blankets/towels when washing.  Now I use it with bibs as well!  Anything that has an odor will come out smelling almost new.

Use baby powder to remove sand.  Baby powder absorbs wetness so when baby has sticky sand all over him at the beach, just sprinkle some on and brush the powder and sand right off!

Available here
Wet bag.  I bring this bad boy to the pool and put all the wet things/food soiled things/spit-up things in it to take home.  This way all the clean things aren't getting dirtied by the dirty things.

Available here
Cut up fresh fruit/veggies as you buy it.  Prepare everything the minute you have time.  Freeze what you think might go bad before you get a chance to eat it.  Place it in clear containers so that you can easily see it and grab it for a healthy snack. (This slicer is the best $10 I've spent in some time.)

Dry shampoo. As if you didn't already know...

Keep extra everything in the car.  I keep a random t-shirt for me, a one piece outfit for baby, a container of wipes, and a few diapers in the pocket of the car seat just in case I find myself in a situation where I need them and didn't pack them.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Some Fitness Thoughts

It's really easy for me to make excuses and sit on the couch rather than get out and do.  It's hot, humid, and sticky this summer.  And apparently my body has taken on the stance of a newborn because I have my days and nights clearly confused.  I'm in a bit of a party all night, sleep all day mode.  Which is working out greeeaaaat with a 7 month old.  How does that even happen?

I've been eating my weight in fresh from the garden cucumber and watermelon.  So delicious and hydrating and easy.  I just put a little salt and pepper on those cukes and eat 1 (or 2 or 3) in a sitting.

For some reason, my appetite just goes away with the heat.  I can't complain though.

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen that I just purchased my dream running stroller.  Yes.  I'm that girl...the girl with a dream running stroller.  I actually contemplated going for 2 runs in 1 day just so I could try it out once I got it home!

I just signed up for this half marathon.  I've run several halves in the past, but this will be my first one postbaby.  I don't intend to run it with CT, but I may just get a wild hair - who knows.

If you're located in North Carolina and are looking for some motivation and accountability, join me!  This is one of my biggest passions that I've accumulated since moving here.  Victory Junction Gang is a camp designed for children with debilitating and/or life-threatening illnesses.  Ordinarily these children might not get to attend summer camp due to inefficient auto-immune systems, medical needs, or finances.  We take a tour each year when my parents come down (it's sponsored by NASCAR and Kyle Petty) and it just about makes my heart burst.  We donate as often as possible throughout the year.

How is your fitness going?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A Nice Little Saturday

A few Saturdays ago my mother in-law and I went on a little trip to Bed, Bath and Beyond to look for this blanket.  It reminded me of Old School when Frank is talking about the nice, little Saturday he and his wife have planned.  It was a nice, little Saturday after all.

Chambray: Old Navy, Shorts: JCrew, Flops: Sanuk via Zulily

It was unusually cool and breezy that day so I took advantage of the (slightly) cooler weather by wearing my new chambray button down.  

While at Bed, Bath, and Beyond we found the blankets we were looking for and I ended up getting a few other items that I've had on my "to-buy" list like these pocketed bibs and a bath toy scoop.  I thought I would share them with you and let you know how they are working for us in case you are in the market for anything similar.

The big mouth bibs are awesome.  I love that the pocket buttons up and down making cleanup easy, but catching all the food that gets dropped.  Bonus: they are dishwasher safe!

This mesh toy storage bag clings to the tub wall and has made cleaning up after bath time a breeze.  My only concern is that our water will cause the tote to mildew.  It tends to be hard and I have to change out shower liners frequently and clean the toilets/tub biweekly to keep up with it.  

This blanket has been a fantastic addition.  In fact, I would go so far as to say any family that enjoys being outdoors should have one.  It is water resistant making it easy to clean and great for repelling sand and dirt.  CT loves the vibrant colors and pattern and the carrying case makes it extremely convenient for traveling.

new for baby

Have you made any recent baby purchases worth sharing?