My Must-Haves for the First Six Months

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

I survived the first 6 months of motherhood! Even though it went by crazy fast, it was completely packed with learning experiences, tears (from me and Vi), being scared, and the kind of love you don't think could be any stronger, until the next day when it always is. One thing I've learned is that majority of being a parent relies on instinct, but it definitely doesn't hurt to have a few handy items to help you out along the way. So far, these are mine. 

Covered Goods Nursing Cover. I already talked about this a bit in my Favorites post from February, but it really belongs in this list. This cover has made the first six months of nursing in public such a breeze. It's so much more subtle and less bulky than the apron-style ones, and it's so breathable and soft for baby to be under. It also can be used as a stroller cover, shopping cart cover, blanket, and scarf! Such a great buy, I'm so happy I have this!

Simple toys like this colorful links are Vi's favorites. She loves to just sit and look at these, shake them, feel the different textures, chew on them, and pull them apart. I've really noticed that the simple, versatile toys like this are the best. As she gets older she's really discovering different ways to play with them and they encourage her to use her imagination instead of the toy doing it all for her. She also loves the ring stacker and rattles.

These baby feeders are so cool! Before she was eating actual food, we would put chunks of frozen breastmilk in these and she loved chewing on it, probably felt great on her sore gums. Now we do the same thing but with frozen fruit and vegetables, and she loves it. It turns eating into a little treat that she can feed herself.

This Baby K'tan Carrier has been so handy, literally! I've been wearing Vi in it since she was weeks old, and will be able to until she's 30 pounds! I've worn her in it on walks, while grocery shopping, while cleaning the house, and even out at dinner. It's so comfortable and has been amazing to be able to hold her while still having two hands. She really enjoys facing out and being able to look around while I do things.

These Indestructible Baby Books are the coolest! They literally cannot be ripped, chewed, or ruined by wetness. Vi loves being able to hold books on her own, and it's nice to be able to let her hold and play with these without her ruining or eating them. These are the ultimate entertainment for her and we always have one in the diaper bag!

The Honest Company has been a huge necessity for us. We use their diapers, wipes, soap, diaper rash cream, baby powder, sunblock, lotion, even cleaning products for the house! If Honest has it, we buy it! I love how safe it all is, and has always been gentle enough for Vi's very sensitive skin. I feel really confident that they're safe to use around Vi and the dogs, and feel so good about only using natural, clean products.

I've raved about this Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bag before, but I feel like I just can't say enough good things about it. It's so amazing. It's cute, can be a bag or backpack, has so much room for everything you could ever need, is spill-proof, it's really everything you could want in a diaper bag. I love it so much and recommend it to everyone in need of a diaper bag.

Finally, this Joovy walker has been really great to have. She doesn't even use it as a walker yet, her little legs don't reach even the floor, but it's still been awesome. We keep it in the kitchen with some measuring spoons on the tray and just stick her in it while cooking. She loves sitting in it and playing or just watching me cook. It's also really light and easy to roll from room to room, it's the perfect little entertainer that she can safely sit in on her own.


There have been so, so many amazing products that I've loved using the first six months of motherhood, these are just a few of the things that I've discovered and now feel like I couldn't live without! Have you ever tried any of these things, what did you think?

Summer Staples from Tobi Part Two

Saturday, May 28, 2016

The second thing I got from Tobi is this gray bodysuit. I absolutely love bodysuits because they make tucking shirts into high waisted jeans or skirts so easy. It stays nice and smooth all day, and you don't have to worry about parts coming untucked or wrinkled. This simple gray one is going to get a ton of use for me this summer. I can wear it with literally every pair of jeans or skirts that I own. I personally think a bodysuit is a staple for everyone as it can be worn so many different ways.

ps. Right now you can get this bodysuit for half off (!!) with the code SPARK50!  

On Base Raglan Bodysuit c/o Tobi
Jeans

Some other Tobi favorites: Bralette, Shorts, Denim, Tank Tops, Casual Dresses, Long Sleeve Dresses 

Summer Staples from Tobi Part One

Sunday, May 22, 2016

A few things I always look for when I shop are comfort, ease, and of course, style. Tobi is completely perfect for that, they have so many options that fit all of those things, as well as being affordable! One of my favorite pieces from Tobi right now is this jumpsuit. I absolutely love it! The possibilities are endless when it comes to styling it, you can wear sandals and a bralette for an easy daytime outfit, or add heels and a jacket for a night out. It's just so versatile! Plus, I'm obsessed with this green color right now. It worked perfectly for walking around downtown with my family, then I just threw a black leather jacket over it for dinner. I know I'm going to be wearing this a ton throughout summer and probably into the fall!

I have two more styles from Tobi I can't wait to also share with you!


This Is It Tie Dolman Jumpsuit: c/o Tobi 
Bralette
Bag
Sandals
Sunglasses


Some other Tobi favorites: Bralette, Shorts, Denim, Tank Tops, Casual Dresses, Long Sleeve Dresses 


Violet at Six Months

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

I am in complete disbelief that Violet has been around for 6 months. How on earth did that happen so fast?! She has grown and changed so much and so quickly, without me even noticing. Looking back at her monthly photos from the past 6 months makes me just want to go hold her and squeeze her forever. I'll never feel like I had enough time with Violet as a tiny squishy little baby, I want to savor every moment!

This month, Violet:
Can sit up completely on her own. 
Wears clothing size 3-6 month and size 2 diapers.
Eats solid foods once a day.
Has eaten avocado, sweet potato, green beans, oatmeal, apple sauce, and carrots.
Goes to sleep at 7, wakes up at 5 to eat, then goes back to sleep until 7.
Has started to notice the dogs and loves to pet them.
Is always so happy unless she's tired and it's past her bedtime.
Just got her very first cold. Just a stuffy nose and slight cough.
Can turn the pages of board books.

I hope so much that the second half of Vi's first year goes by slower than the first half did. I don't know how I'm going to handle seeing her turn a year old! 


Elli's Fairy Special Birthday

My sweet niece Elli turned 5 over the weekend, and her fairy-themed party was just too adorable not too share. There was flowers and glitter everywhere, and everyone got their very own flower crown and set of fairy wings, a 5-year-old girl's fantasy! Elli is the sweetest, spunkiest little girl you'll ever meet, and Violet already loves her so much! We had so much fun celebrating, it makes me so excited to have birthday parties for Violet soon!

Quick Ways to De-Stress

Friday, May 6, 2016

I saw a quote the other day that read "You Can't Pour from an Empty Cup." Such an obvious concept, but so many people forget it. We use all of our effort on other things; kids, jobs, the house, the pets, the list goes on. But what good is all of that if you aren't taken care of. As a mom, I have to remind myself that I take the best care of Violet when I am well-rested, relaxed and have set aside some time for myself. Life is stressful, and if we don't take the time to recharge and rejuvenate, it can become way too much. I've learned that the hard way.

Although the ideal relaxation would be a full spa day, it's not always realistic, so here are some of my favorite quick ways to de-stress, most of which you can do right at home:

+ Take a hot bath. Don't forget the "Do Not Disturb" sign!
+ Go on a drive. Something about driving and listening to music can be so therapeutic.
+ Take a quick walk. Running and jogging works too, but walking is more my speed ;)
+ Light your favorite candles.
+ Write in a journal. I love the ones that give you prompts and ideas.
+ Watch a few episodes of your favorite TV show.
+ Enjoy an adult beverage.
+ Dance!
+ Reread your favorite book.
+ Color. There are so many amazing adult coloring books and apps out there.
+ Organize a room in your house. I love to do this one.
+ Call your mom or an old friend.
+ Make a list of things you are thankful for.
+ Do some stretching or yoga.
+ Give yourself a pedicure, complete with foot massage of course.
+ Watch a funny movie. Hot Rod usually does it for me!

Everyone needs their own ways to quickly destress so they're able to return to everyday life as their best selves, what are some of your favorite ways?

April Favorites

Saturday, April 30, 2016

A few things I discovered and loved this month...

I caved and bought the Kylie Lip Kit. Yes, I sat at my computer for about 10 minutes before they were supposed to be restocked, then when 11:59 hit, I reloaded the page about 100 times before they became available. I then added two "Koko Ks" to my cart (one for me and one for my sister) and was lucky enough to actually get them. They sold out within a minute. Now, I don't think they're as amazing as selling out in 60 seconds, but they're pretty good! Each kit includes a liquid lipstick and matching lip liner. The liner is super soft, and the lipstick is gorgeous. I love the color I got, and it has a really nice matte-not-flat finish. I really like it, but probably not enough to buy one again if they stay this popular.

Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue. I've been searching for a good tinted moisturizer for a while, so when Bare Minerals, one of my favorite cosmetic brand, came out with this, I had to have it. I love it! It's perfect for my every day when I don't want full makeup but would like a bit of coverage with my moisturizer. Plus it's SPF 30, so it's everything I need in one!

I received this Bumble and Bumble Pret-a-Powder sample from Sephora and was really excited to try it. I love this brand and love the idea of any kind of dry shampoo. It absorbs extra oil, and adds volume and texture. This has become a must in my hair routine and I'll definitely be buying the full size when I run out.

Joe has been trying to talk me into getting an Apple Watch since they came out. He got one and loved it, but I just didn't see a need for one. They seemed pointless and overpriced to me. But a few weeks ago they were on super sale at Best Buy and I finally let Joe get me one. And I am actually enjoying it. I really like the athletic tracking part of it, and it's nice to be able to glimpse at alerts I get without having to pull out my phone. I still think they cost too much for what they are, but I've been having fun with it.

Canon 40mm Pancake Lens. I actually bought this a couple years ago and completely forgot I had it. I pulled it out recently because I really want to restore my photography knowledge. I've gotten way to comfortable using auto mode and my iPhone lately so I'm trying to practice using my camera on manual more often. I forgot how much I love this lens. I actually prefer using prime lenses, and this one is perfect for taking photos of Violet.

I'm literally 12 years late to this, but I just discovered Desperate Housewives while searching for a new show to fall into on Hulu. I remember my mom always watching this and thinking it looked so stupid, but maybe I like it since I'm a mom now! I'm kind of obsessed with it now and watch it whenever I get an extra 42 minutes.

Have you tried any of these things before? What have you discovered and loved recently?