March 22, 2018

Our Start to 2018

Welp, 2018 has been quite a year so far!! We started off with a few nice snow days where we got to enjoy the falling snow and take Lola out in it for her first snow experience. I wasn’t sure we would have an opportunity to use a baby snowsuit type of deal, but I was certainly glad we had it that day!
She loves to be outside even when it’s freezing I guess (similar bear bodysuit here)!Lola has had some extra wakeups at night and a bit of an earlier wake-up time the last month which I think is probably due to teething. As you can see, she’s usually the most awake person in the house each morning… And just in case you never thought my house was messy, it usually looks like this most of the weekdays since I work from home. Lots of craft supplies, Amazon packaging, and general clutter but it also drives me crazy so Friday is usually our clean-up day to put it all away so I can breathe again. I’m definitely one of those people where visual clutter affects my mood (even when it’s all my own mess) so I have to clean it all up at least once a week. I started to feel kind of sick mid-January so I went to the doctor with a cough/throat kind of a deal but by the end of the day it was pretty clear that I actually had the flu instead. I haven’t had the flu in forever and I guess this was a terrible year to get it. It was so awful and I thought I couldn’t be more miserable when we realized Lola had a fever a few days later even though Todd had tried to keep her away from me (I would try and pump milk throughout the day for him to give to her). It was her first fever and it got pretty high at one point so it was super scary as I was worried it may spike and cause a febrile seizure. If you’ve had the flu this year, you know it’s awful, but having it while taking care of an 8-month-old with it too was such a nightmare and one of the toughest weeks I can recall to be honest. For example, a sick baby just wants to be held and rocked but I was so weak and dizzy that I was afraid I was going to pass out from all the movement/standing before she would fall asleep! Or, I would juuuust get her to sleep and then my uncontrollable cough would kick in and wake her up again—come on!! Todd got it right after Lola so since it’s the worst the first few days, I had to care for Lola and him since I was the “most well” of the three of us being 4 days in. Anyways, it was such a awful time and I think I’ll still be recovering for a bit since I slipped some ribs from coughing so hard (I can feel the rib cartilage poking out—yikes!) and that seems to be healing pretty slow. Ugh, I hope you are lucky and miss out on that this winter!Speaking of health and trying to remain healthy, one thing that we’ve done pretty regularly since Lola was a few months old is give her daily probiotics to help support her immune system and add to her good bacteria in her gut. For this sponsored post I’ve partnered with Amazon and Culturelle to help spread the word about the benefits of probiotics for babies and kids. You can check out their infant probiotic drops on Amazon and as an added bonus they are a Prime item too—every Mom’s favorite tool! Our pediatrician recommends a probiotics regimen before vaccines to help boost Baby’s immune system and I’ve read so many positives about using probiotics (and I take probiotics myself as well) that I’m sure we’ll be using them with Lola for a long time to come.  Good morning!! What’s for lunch Mom?? Lola’s been doing so well with her eating progress and I’m planning on sharing a post soon with all that info! I really like the way we’ve done it so far and she’s such a good eater so it seems to be working!Also, on an extra personal note, it’s been a really difficult season for me lately so if you are going through that right now, I totally feel your pain. I think as a new Mom sometimes it hard to know what’s “real” and what’s hormonal so I feel like I’m always trying to figure that out, but it’s just been one of those times when you think you can’t take one more thing but the new challenges just keep piling on. I don’t think it’s a postpartum thing for a few reasons (although I know that could be part of it since it can vary in strength for people), it feels more more situational and seasonal, but I just keep praying for endurance and for God to point out joys wherever I can find them. I know life is full of mountains and valleys and this has just been one loooong valley for me… …however, this little face is our best source of joy in any season. Sugar and spice and everything nice and is always ready to play piano with Daddy. Remember when I mentioned teething? She’s just pushed through 6 teeth (5 teeth at once) so everything is in danger of being bitten. Unfortunately that also includes me a lot during nursing—ouch!! (Love those little pink moccasins on her).

We also had my parents in town twice this month (on their way to and from seeing my sister and her new baby boy!) so that was quite a treat for us. My mom also showed us how to play a game that kind of like a cross between ping pong and tennis called Pickleball (she had bought us a small net that fits in our driveway) and we played several times each day—it’s SO fun! Of course the visits always feel too short and Lola started acting really cranky after they left so I really think she missed them once she realized they were gone… …she didn’t have to be sad for too long since my brother Joel and sister-in-law Sarah came pretty much the next day to spend the weekend with us! They are super fun so it was just what we needed to put some smiles right back on our faces. I love seeing my family get to spend time with Lola and I know those visits will only get more fun as she gets older!

As you can see, it’s definitely been a bit of a rollercoaster so far as we’ve gotten into 2018 but I know we are still so blessed overall and we have so many exciting milestones to look forward to this year. Can’t wait for spring to pop up in the next few months and take that nature-loving baby outside for some sunny playtimes!

xo. Laura

*This post was sponsored by Amazon and Culturelle and all opinions are my own—thanks for helping to support this blog and our family!

March 18, 2018

Whatever Lola Wants…

This busy bee is 10 months old and standing all on her own like a champ! I think she still doesn’t totally understand that if she takes a step she can walk, but I’m pretty sure she’ll figure it out any day now since she can bend down to pick things up and go right back to standing or shake items to rattle them while remaining upright—strong girl! Here’s my favorite finds for our little sweet treat this month:

1. The colors in this knitted 70’s-ish rainbow romper are so fun!

2. I’m really interested in trying a full sleeve bib (this brand has some really cute patterns) since we usually feed Lola in her diaper to avoid extra laundry. Anyone already use and like/dislike them??

3. Found a super cute baby jean jacket to put some large patches on the back of—I found a big pastel rainbow patch in the clearance bin at H&M for 1$ soooo how could I not? Maybe I’ll use this patch on the front…

4. I have trouble finding non-slip socks that I like (and that stay on) for her to wear around the house, so these may be the perfect solution to give her some footing grip while keeping her feet warm too.

5. THESE SHOES!!! Also, I just got these to go with summer dresses—cuuuuute.

6. These would be great for a base for baby headband DIYs and then you can cut out some glitter fabric sheet shapes (like stars or bows) and just glue them on!

7. Is this what babies wear to Cochella?

8. I would love to get Lola something like this to play with in our den, but is she the right age for this or still a little young?

9. Love this outfit for Easter, especially the way they have it styled in the photo with the collared bodysuit underneath—so sweet!

We’ve been trying out some new toys like those wooden blocks that my Mom brought for her on their last visit, and while she’s not interested in building anything yet, she does like the knocking down process so far! Classic baby move. What are your favorite toys/games for this age?

xo. Laura

March 6, 2018

How We Started Baby-Led Weaning

There are so many things to think about with having a new baby that I just didn’t have space in my brain to decide on anything that would come later down the line—the old “one thing at a time” mentality for sure. That being said, I didn’t really think that much about starting her on solid food and our timeline or plan for that until she was several months old and I knew it was just around the corner at the six-month mark. In the meantime, I had heard little whispers of friends that had already done or were starting something called “baby-led weaning” with their kids and seemed to really love it so I looked into it for a few months before deciding to give it a try when Lola was showing all the signs of being ready for food (usually happens around 6 months but they should be able to sit up well on their own first in addition to a few other indicators as well). The name “baby-led weaning” is a bit misleading since it sounds like you are weaning off breast milk (which I didn’t want to do for quite some time) but it’s basically just about starting solid food. The basic premise of the whole thing is that instead of starting Baby on purees for a while, you jump right into actual food that that is soft enough (and usually shaped in long sticks or have a bit of a stem handle on them) for Baby to practice chewing on right from the beginning. That way, they learn to chew right away with types of food that are manageable for them and they can feed themselves from the beginning (always under supervision of course!). They encourage a wide range of appropriate foods for each developmental stage and differing levels of softness as Baby progresses in their eating journey. So, you wouldn’t give a 6 month old a hard crunchy carrot to eat (too hard especially with little or no teeth to chew and a large piece may break off and be a choking hazard) but if you steam or roast manageable slices of carrot soft enough, they can eat them very well! They are actually Lola’s favorite. Small things like soft peas are introduced later since Babies don’t have the dexterity to pick them up one by one at 6 months, so you are kind of making everything into sticks that they can hold (like an oatmeal finger) or steaming broccoli and cauliflower florets and leaving some stem on so they have a bit of a handle to hold while eating.

One of Lola’s first foods at 6 months—banana sliced in half was one of her favorites from the start!Ok, now the biggest concern (it was my biggest too)…Is there a risk of choking? Yes! Anytime you are giving your baby food that’s not a total puree, there’s a risk of choking. But even if you start your baby on purees, you’ll still eventually have to give them solid food at some point unless you want them to be 35 years old and still only eating applesauce for every meal. Point being that you don’t really get to skip that terrifying stage where it freaks you out that they could potentially choke on something they are eating, you just delay the inevitable by starting on purees. Babies have a gag reflex that is way further up in their mouth when they are born so it’s somewhere near the middle of their tongue and it moves further back as they get older. Lola would gag all the time when we tried to do tongue exercises with her after her tongue tie revision, and that’s why! It’s way further forward than it will be when she’s an adult. So, that reflex being so much further up acts as a protectant for babies to (usually) trigger a gag for a larger piece of food before it become choking and being fully lodged in their throat. That being said, it’s still scary to watch a baby learn to eat real food, no matter what age they are. When it would freak me out to see her gag on something, I would totally have that thought of, “maybe we should just do purees instead,” but I realized that it will be just the same exact thing of her learning to figure it out later so I wasn’t really gaining anything by putting it off. Just delaying that uncomfortable feeling for myself. Also, regardless of what feeding strategy you choose, I really think every parent should take a choking/CPR class so you know what to do in case a baby is choking on food or any other item. As much as you can try your best to keep small things away from babies that could be dangerous, they are smart and fast so it’s best to be prepared in case the worst case scenario happens. I did find that she was gagging more than than I thought she should be so I just steamed her veggies even softer and then she did so much better after that.

And again, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with doing the purees first, it’s just a different process and I think both have their pros and cons. I know some Mamas that did a combo of purees and solids because they would hate it when they gagged and I totally get that strategy too. They do suggest giving Baby water with each meal, but our pediatrician doesn’t recommend water as a drink until after one so I don’t do that part and she seems fine without it.

I do love that right from the start she was eating lots of different foods and I look for opportunities to put spices in things as well to get her used to that—so far there’s nothing she won’t eat. There are some things that you’ll need to keep in mind like not giving them foods with added salt, really limiting processed foods, being wary of or delaying introduction of allergy prone foods before a certain age (like nuts or strawberries), and not giving them certain foods at all (like honey), so make sure to read up on all of that before starting.


We use this bib (it has a pocket which is great!) and this high chair (for some reason they sell the seat and tray separately). I love that once we don’t need a tray anymore we can cozy this chair right up to the dining table and she can sit right at the table with us. For now we just place her chair right next to the table between Todd and I so she still feels very included in family dinner and the high chair is really easy to clean since it doesn’t have crevices where the food could get stuck so so that’s a big plus. I use this travel high chair that clamps onto a table for when we go out to restaurants or eat at friend’s houses and this placemat is great so she has a clean surface that I can put the food onto. In the beginning it’s helpful to have a crinkle cutter for veggies so little fingers can hold onto slippery shapes easier. On occasion I have spoon fed her some bites of soup or other things she couldn’t really pick up or eat herself yet and I have used these spoons that she’ll learn to use herself later. The Baby-Led Weaning book feels that you should give Baby water to drink with meals as soon as you start solids, but our pediatrician feels water under one isn’t necessary so we haven’t done that part yet.

This is a really messy process so I would definitely recommend a splash mat underneath your chair or just make sure the surface under your chair is easily cleanable (like wood floors). I made a confetti-filled mat as a DIY that I love! Also, if you have a clean space under the chair, you can just hand them back the piece of broccoli that they sent airborne on purpose and they can continue to eat it and not waste food.

I keep hearing from people that have done this that it made their babies such good eaters to be able to feed themselves and have a wide variety of flavors and spices so early. My favorite part so far though is that she can eat and feed herself while we eat so we can all eat at once! No taking turns between Todd and I to spoon-feed while our own food gets cold and we can actually eat our food when we go out pretty normally since she’s busy eating too. So much easier!! We just increased from one meal a day to two meals in the last month (lunch and dinner), and we’ll probably go to three meals in a month or two. Around 7 months her staple foods were banana, avocado, broccoli, cauliflower, potato, sweet potato, squash, carrots, pear, and oatmeal, but now she eats pretty much whatever we are eating with a few variations at times when things are too spicy for her, etc.

She pretty much always has a fruit desert at each meal—her favorite! They have a cookbook that explains pretty much all you need to know before starting the plan with a bunch of recipes as well, but I would suggest just reading the main Baby-Led Weaning book if you are planning on making your own plant-based or vegan meals like we do. I got the cookbook first since I heard it explains most of the program, but I didn’t feel like the recipes were helpful since I couldn’t use or would have to really alter a lot of them to fit our mainly plant-based eating. It can be helpful to look at the general titles of recipes though just to get an idea of what types of foods are easier for Baby to eat at different stages. I’ll share some of my favorite things and meal ideas to make for Lola in another post in case that’s helpful for you, some I’ve gotten from other Moms and some I’ve had to just figure out on my own! I guess that’s most of Motherhood in a nutshell, huh?

xo. Laura

February 21, 2018

Dining Room/Front Room Tour

I feel like technically this tour should also say “office” too because I actually work out of this room the most lately! I use our spare rooms as an office/craft storage space but it’s a lot easier to photograph in this front room with its big windows and I can spread out large projects on the dining table so that’s a big help too. Anyways, besides that, we love to use this room for parties since you have have all your food spread out on one side and a big sitting area right next to it. I never knew what a sitting room was before moving to the south, but I guess it’s just a room made to sit in so I think we are doing it properly?? I actually made that table 5 years ago (my first wood DIY ever) and it’s still holding up just fine! I painted it white a few years ago and gave the legs a gold spray paint treatment and it’s just a nice, simple table that feels sleek and clean. Those molded chairs are also great for all the crafts, cat hair, and baby stuff that’s happening in this space since you can wipe them down really easily which is a big plus. I also highly recommend a cowhide for a dining room—hard to stain (even this light colored one) super easy to clean food off of, and basically waterproof! I painted that sputnik fixture gold when we moved to give it a new life and I think I’ll basically like any 60’s or 70’s inspired light in a house (here’s a similar one)—they just feel way cooler to me. I made these wall planters for the space a while back but they are perfect for adding a little greenery to the walls. PRO TIP: I usually use faux plants in wall planters because trying to water wall plants can be a dripping nightmares so it’s usually waaay easier to go the faux route here.  Little vintage touches (like those brass swans) are my favorite thing to shop for… I’ve been keeping a lot of my glass collection on that buffet table, but as Lola gets more and more mobile, they will probably have to find a new home soon! I also just printed out that Bardot pic at Kinko’s on their blueprint machine and then made a simple custom frame for it. She’s been there for a bit sooo I may switch her out soon and probably for Robert Redford. I mean any day that goes by without looking at that face is a bit of a mistake if you ask me. This bar cart is due for some rearranging as well pretty soon! Maybe we should get a bar cart with cabinet doors we can lock (or maybe something up higher like this) to keep Lola from crashing all the bottles over. I think she likes anything that makes a loud sound so I see her eyeing up this bottom shelf lately…(“wild at heart” print from this shop). That tall cactus is hanging out inside for the winter! He lives outside in the summer, grows a ton, and then we bring him back in for hibernation. We had to cut off a foot from the top this year just to get him in the door! He was only about 3 feet tall less than two years ago so it’s super crazy how big he is. For a little room refresh, I got this amazing flat weave rug from Arro Home (love that company!). We have another one of their rugs in the den and they are great for Lola to crawl around and play on since you can roll balls and toys around on the rug without them getting stuck on anything. That pink linen ottoman is also great for extra seating in this area and it’s a soft item that Lola can pull up on and practice her standing skills.

I love large scale prints and all the colors and chill vibe in that ocean print—the mint is perfect for my color palette. I’ve been drooling over those pink eye pillows ever since I saw them in some other home photos online—they are just too cute! They are also velvet which feels super plush and it’s nice to have some round pillows for shape variation as well. That sofa is actually a sleeper sofa which is great for us since we don’t have a lot of space but we can close the doors to this front area and then guest can have the whole space to themselves (and the bed is really comfy too).  It’s good to have an Instax out for parties or just to capture an everyday moment—I love the little collection we’ve gathered over the years. That awesome neon print is a Jeff Mindell photo (used by permission) and I’ll take neon signs or photos anywhere I can get them! We have a real neon in the den, but prints can totally give off that real neon vibe too. That little Palm Springs house is actually a scratch house I made for the cats! It’s still one of my favorite things I’ve ever made. I loooove it.  Our cats hang out in this room most afternoons and take lots of naps on the rug during sunny days (although not a lot of those this winter!). That cocktail table is so pretty but the edges hold all the crumbs and dust in like crazy—you have to vacuum them out to get it clean! Still, I love the gold details though. Love that simple photo display. And look how little Lola is!! That phone cutout was a 70’s advertisement I found in a vintage shop. I just keep moving it around the house because it’s too good not to display somewhere.                                     Lola’s shirt/ Enfants Cheris, Lola’s pants/ Efaster

Overall this is just a warm friendly room that makes me happy to hang out in or have breakfast in on a Saturday morning (you can see what this room looked like when we first moved in). We also have been purposely eating dinner as a family at the dinner table every night (even if the other half is covered with my work projects). I want to get Lola used to that habit so we started it as soon as she began solid food and we’ve only had a few nights where we haven’t done it (up until then we’ve always eaten dinner at our coffee table in front of the tv—guilty!!). We still have a few small changes to create a “Lola-proof” environment as she grows (like move out or create a barrier around that cactus for one), but she’s pretty cute as you can see so it’s worth any change we have to make 🙂

xo. Laura

February 12, 2018

Whatever Lola Wants…

…Lola gets? Well, it’s obviously her Mom wanting these things, but the post title is just too good to pass up. I spend waaay more time looking at items for Lola then I do for me. I would have thought before I had a baby that would be a bad sign that I was “losing all my own personal identity” or something, and who knows, maybe it is, but it brings me a lot of joy soooo I guess I’m ok with it. My brain is already gearing up toward spring mode (it really can’t get here fast enough for me) and besides the temp and sunshine the other best things about warm weather is that all the baby legs come out of hibernation! Cute babies in short rompers are irresistible…Here are my top things I have my eye on this month:

Two words — Valentine’s Day.

I have an outfit in mind for Lola’s one year photo (of course that all depends on if it still fits by then!) but these shoes would be perfect! And these I just want for every other outfit 🙂

I wasn’t sure I was going to do hair clips for Lola any time soon, but these may change my mind!

Maybe the perfect blend of pre-tech hippe baby and the modern world?

Ugh, this bodysuit is perfect to pair with a cute skirt (and I looove the back detail).

This knitted romper is my favorite thing I’ve seen lately and and I can totally picture her in this come spring! Such sweet ruffle straps.


I don’t know if this has happened to any of you, but so much of the denim I wear these days is distressed that anything without rips looks odd to me now (even Lola’s baby jeans). I think these will solve the problem nicely…

I want to make Lola a busy board soon, but I love the coloring on this toddler version—perfect colors for my house and it looks so fun!

I would love to get her some more play romper for around the house (I’d rather not have her in her actual pajamas all day since they get dirty so fast with her crawling around on the floor and then we run out of PJs so fast) and I love this pattern (although these are literally bananas and would match her banana sheets too).

She is WAY to little for this mind-blowingly cute bag, but maybe I could keep it for her for a couple of year!! I’m dying…

I think this shade of mint is so pretty on Lola with her coloring so as much as I love my pink, I should also have a few more sweet rompers like that.

I have a feeling I’ll be getting more and more into hair accessories as her hair grows too (which it definitely is doing every month) so I’ll be keeping an eye out for that category in the coming months. I think her little side swept bangs will be so cute with little clips on that side—can’t wait!

xo. Laura