Thursday, March 31, 2016

weekly pinterest roundup

Here's a few Pinterest pins that I've followed through with lately- funnily enough- all food! 
This raspberry cream cheese coffee cake was super easy (and delicious!) 
I made this french toast bake for Easter and the kids have been enjoying leftovers for breakfast this week. 
I also made this overnight Eggs  Benedict casserole and it was a hit! I halved the recipe but Nick had it two other mornings for breakfast, so I would probably make a full batch so we could have more leftovers. 
These buffalo turkey burgers have been in heavy rotation for dinners over here. 
Some pins that I want to try this week are: a wreath like this for our front door, this scooping activity for Charlotte and Hayden (since we are supposed to have a few warm days!), and slow cooker salsa chicken.

What have you been pinning lately??  

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Easter 2016

Easter was another holiday that we celebrated on our own for the first time and again we had a mellow family day. The kids looked through their Easter Baskets which included a soccer ball for Hayden (he's been into soccer lately) and some new chalk for Charlotte (she loves to draw/color) among other things. We went pretty light on their baskets which was just fine- those cheap plastic eggs were the real hit of the day. 
We had breakfast and I prepped two dishes the night before in an effort to make the day run more smoothly- overnight french toast and eggs benedict casserole. Both were great and so easy to make!
We were excited to have an egg hunt in our  backyard because we have a lot of space and some fun hiding spots. Hayden hunted solo (with very little help from us, for the first time!) and I set up some eggs in a tub of kinetic sand for Charlotte to "find." She was more interested in coloring with chalk...
It was a quiet day and it was nice for us to relax and have some family time after such a busy week traveling and readjusting to NJ.

Friday, March 25, 2016

5 on Friday

We are back in New Jersey, adjusting to the time change and working through mountains of laundry and an exploded toothpaste tube in the luggage situation... We loved our time in California, but are also so happy to be back home. Our first day back, Nick took a half day off work, brought us lunch and we spent most of the day outside with the babies. I'm so happy the Spring (mostly) made it to the East Coast. 
Here are some sweet moments from the last week: 
Girlfriend got a taste of her first milkshake. She was quite impressed.

Home sweet home (and pretty spring florals)

Knee socks and moccasins.

Dressed himself (not shown, the scarf he added later... #hipstertoddler).

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

National Poison Prevention Week

Today, I'm sharing something a little different than the norm. This week is National Poison Prevention Week and specifically, I want to focus on some hidden toxins in everyday products. National Poison Prevention week was designed to inform people of the dangers of various poisons and how to prevent poisoning. In 2016, our knowledge of these words (BPA, parabens, asbestos) are definitely more mainstream but there's still many items that I didn't realize posed potential threats. As a mom, I try to go the clean, natural route with our food, baby products, and cleaners. We steer clear of most processed foods, almost never use plastic water bottles, and use natural cleaners. There's always room for improvement and this infographic below lists some common dangers that we may not realize: 

As you can see, this infographic details the risks of various types of cancers that can develop from exposure to these toxins. Recently, a reader named Heather reached out to me and asked if I could help spread the word about mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that if diagnosed in only 2500 - 3000 people in the United States each year.  Heather was diagnosed 10 years ago with mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is caused by the exposure to asbestos. Generally mesothelioma is a result of occupational exposure, but it can be diagnosed following environmental exposure as well.
Being proactive and avoiding cancer-related toxins in our home and ever day life is something that is even more important to me, now that I am a mom. Check labels, opt for items that are paraben free, BPA free and free of other toxins. Thanks for reading today, and special thanks to Heather for sharing her story with me. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

all-time favorites

Having been a mom for approximately 3.5 years, I've had some time to use lots of baby products. Some things we love, others are "meh". I've compiled a list of my all-time favorite products that I would recommend to anyone having a new baby, or a second baby. 

  1. California Baby Shampoo and Body Wash: We've been using this product sine Hayden was born and love it. Both our babies have sensitive/dry skin and this clenser is gentle on their skin and hair. It has a mild scent and the bottle lasts us a long time. I only have to restock about 3-4 times a year.
  2. Boppy: This has been a favorite for nursing/bottle feeding, and tummy time. Even though Charlotte is big enough to feed herself, Nick still uses it to give her a bedtime bottle. Plus, there are so many cute boppy covers on Etsy that you can really customize it to match your nursery. 
  3. Lollacup: We have 5 of these... They are cute cups, so well-made and easy to clean. They don't leak and both kids love them. I've found that a straw is generally an easier transition from the bottle for babies than a sippy cup.
  4. City Select Jogger: I love, love, love this stroller. It is so great for traveling (which we now do a lot of) because it can fold pretty flat for being such a large stroller. The seat configurations are numerous and you can add a kickboard on the back. The stroller basket is large as well. It's not a running stroller (we have a BOB  for that) but it does a decent job on sand and in other off road adventures. 
  5. Mamaroo: This is the best infant swing. It doesn't take up a ton of space and is so soothing- both my babies logged many naps in the Mamaroo. I also like that it looks a bit more modern. 
  6. Swaddles: Both babies loved being swaddled and I loved using the aden and anais swaddles to wrap them tightly. They are so lightweight (perfect for warm CA weather) and it's easy to double up on colder night. Now that we don't swaddle, they are great for stroller blankets, super hero capes, and indoor picnics. 
  7. Como Tomo Bottles: We've used these and the born-free brand. I think for babies that are breastfeeding and bottle feeding, these are great because they are really soft and well-designed. Also, they are lightweight and easy to throw into the diaper bag because the bottle part is squishy. 
  8. Solly Baby Wrap: I had this and the Moby wrap and I loved this one so much more. It's lightweight and easy to wrap. It's perfect for the first 6 months or so when baby wearing is more common. Charlotte loved it, especially on fussy days. 
  9. Chicco Key Fit: This is the easiest carseat to install (again great for traveling) and it's 30lb limit makes it last a long time. Charlotte is still in the infant seat and will probably be for some time to come. 
  10. Soothies: These are are pacifiers that are commonly given out at the hospital. Both our kids have only ever used this kind. They are cheap and readily available so should we lose one (or more) we can easily replace them). I also like that they are all one piece with no hard plastic, so nothing that can break off. 
  11. Ergo carrier: This is one of our most used items. I always have it in my car for walks, trips to the store, and sometimes just wearing during witching hour at the house. I like the idea behind the Ergo 360 but we didn't want to buy a new carrier for C when we already had a good one. 
So, what's on your list of must-have baby items? 

Friday, March 18, 2016

5 on Friday

1. S'ip x S'well at Targs here in CA and I saw they were selling S'well water bottles. I have a small one I take to the gym at home and a larger similar bottle that I take everywhere else. I love that it keeps my water ice cold for hours and I am glad to have an extra bottle to take on the plane to keep Charlotte's milk warm. These ones are so cute and I love the new shape! 
2. St. Patty's Day Fun: We had a busy St. Patrick's Day starting with our favorite avocado toast for breakfast, a St. Patrick's Day party in the morning, park time and then lunch with Granny at her school and dinner out with a friend. Busy day and lots of fun  for the babies!  
3. Snappin' I've had snapchat for a couple years but didn't really know what to do with it (#soold) but have been loving it lately for taking quick videos and shots of our days. My username is jessicareisfelt if you want to follow along! 
4. Stepping back into our old life: It's been a bit surreal being for the last week and half because it's like we are doing all the same things we did when we lived here: trips to the park, library, Whole Foods, our favorite food trucks, and more. I'm even driving my old car this weekend (my sister in law owns it now and I'm borrowing it). It's been so nice to be here but we are also looking forward to going back home to Nick and our house and experience Spring in New Jersey.  
5.  Easter Outfits: I bought the kids their Easter clothes (from The Gap, naturally) and I'm excited to see them in their matching chambray! 

Monday, March 14, 2016

life lately via the camera roll

Ah, it's been like 2 weeks since I've posted anything and we've been busy and not that busy at the same time- mostly it's work that's been taking up a lot of my time! Anyway, I thought I'd share some pictures from the camera roll as a way of getting up to speed.
Little fashionista- loves to put things on her head and wears those sunnies around the house constantly.  
 Special delivery almond champagne from my bff! Surprisingly tasty ;) 
cozy rainy day outfit 

Took the kids out to dinner to a "family friendly" restaurant on someone's recommendation. No highchairs = crazy baby. We were in and out in 45 minutes. 

date night - sans babies- much more fun! We had burgers, wine, and saw The Big Short. Love some alone time with my loves  
neighborhood walk after the rain, loving exploring NJ more now that it's not freezing all the time. 

Slowing puling our room together- can't wait to get the walls painted! 

storytime- he sits quietly and participates in all the songs, I chase after Charlotte who scampers away every two minutes. 

Her face when I told her all the guacamole was gone... 

favorite morning routine 

 mickey pancake game way struggling.... 
playing together peacefully- for a few minutes! Daddy was in Boston for the weekend so we were on our own!

70 degrees and sunny in NJ- what what? Of course, the day we got on the plane to CA (where it was raining...) 

flying solo with these two... one was well behaved 80 % of the time and one was well behaved 20% of the time. I'll let you guess which was which... ;) 

free hot chocolate and a bagel at our favorite CA coffee shop- we've been coming here since Hayden was a baby and they call him Bagel Boy and give him treats every time we come in. 

CA park time with our Emmy! 
first jamba juice- not sharing! 

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