Wednesday, July 31, 2013

No More Monkeys!

My oldest son William likes to play a game we call “No More Monkeys”. What this game consists of is a big pile of pillows and a song and it takes place in mom and dad’s room. All of the pillows are put on the floor, as are the blankets. Then mom sings the No More Monkey Jumping on the Bed song and the boys leap from my bed into the soft landing below.

No More Monkeys Jumping on the bed

Monday, July 29, 2013

I am planning on visiting LEGOLAND Discovery Center

LEGOLAND Discovery Center US Family Guide
My boys love to play with LEGO bricks. They love to build and create and use their imaginations. Who am I kidding, I do too. There is something so cool about watching a fire engine emerge from a pile of little red bricks. I am partial to those little LEGO people and their interchangeable outfits/hair/accessories.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Ready for #BlogHer13

BlogHer13This week I have been preparing for something I look forward to all year long, BlogHer! If you have never heard of BlogHer before, let me give you the simplest explanation… it is a conference for bloggers. A big conference!

Last year BlogHer12 was in NY and it was fabulous. I had an amazing time and could not contain myself when I found out that Chicago was going to be hosting BlogHer13. Since I am a Chicago suburbanite this meant that BlogHer just got a lot less expensive and a lot more manageable for me to bring my newborn along. Yes I will be babywearing my daughter to BlogHer this year. Now to pick out the best carrier!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Taking a Break

I have been consumed with planning, preparing, cleaning, and getting everything ready the last couple days. I have decided that the best thing for the kids and the best thing for my sanity if for us to stop and take a break from it all. No cleaning or picking up, no blogging or checking email, no planning and organizing.

So here is a little peak at what I do with my kids to take a break from it all and to relax and unwind... We take just an hour here and there in the stroller walking the neighborhood and nearby trails. We enjoy the scenery. We check out the trees and the pretty flowers. We relax. 

Baby on the trail

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Super Simple Paella #Recipe

I am all for simple meals, especially meals that do not require a lot of work. Since there is a newborn in the house right now I am pretty much relying on simple recipes {no brainers} to get me through these first couple of months until I get some real sleep again. Believe me – no one wants me to be trying to make difficult dishes right now. My pregnancy-brain has turned into mother-of-a-newborn brain and although it is pretty entertaining it is also quite annoying

Needless to say I will be sharing more simplified, yet still delicious, recipes with you for the next couple of months. Then we can re-evaluate my mother-of-a-newborn brain and see if I can handle more complex recipes again. And now that I have taken a lovely detour into Laura-land {as my husband so lovingly refers to my off topic ranting}, here is a super simple paella recipe for your enjoyment.
How to make Paella - recipe

Friday, July 19, 2013

DIY Bathroom Subway Art #FreePrintable

I have gone back and forth over how I wanted to decorate the kid’s bathroom. I originally thought about doing a Dr. Seuss theme, but quickly crossed that off the list as my children would quickly outgrow that. Then I thought about a Mickey Mouse bathroom theme because… well… I LOVE Disney! But that too got taken off the list as I wanted more sophisticated and modern color choices instead of having a bright red and yellow bathroom. I even thought about doing a “Where the Wild Things Are” bathroom, but I did not have enough wall space to really embrace this theme the way I wanted to.

Then I spent an afternoon on Pinterest {try not to act too surprised} and saw several bathroom printables that were really cute, but none of them were really 100% me. I wanted something funny but completely child appropriate. I wanted sayings and poems and sing song type things… I wanted it all. So I made it myself.
Free Printable DIY Subway Bathroom Art

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Julia’s Journey {Birth Story}

baby girl crying

I feel incredibly blessed to be able to share with you baby Julia’s birth story. Let me start off by saying that Julia has been my easiest labor and delivery out of all three of my children. Each of my labor and delivery experiences has been quite different. With my first born I was nervous and although I had read and researched everything I could about labor and delivery – you never truly understand labor and delivery until you go through it. With my second child I had back labor and had issues getting admitted {which did little to calm my nerves}. This time around I was calm and collected and ready to rock out my labor and delivery!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

My Pregnancy Progression #BabyBump

When I was pregnant with my first born I cringed at the thought of taking pictures and looking fat. So there are very few pictures of my pregnant with my first born son. In hindsight I wish that there were more.

When baby number two came around I was lucky enough to be pregnant at the same time as my sister-in-law Wendy and so there are some really great pictures of us both pregnant together, but not a lot.

With baby number three I embraced the idea of being pregnant wholeheartedly. I did not care that much about looking fat… at least that is what I tell myself. I wanted to be able to see my growth and be able to look back on my pregnancy. I took weekly pictures of my growing baby bump and I kept a journal and I am so happy that I did!

So without further ado… here is my pregnancy progression.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Spicy Shrimp Tacos #Recipe

I love shrimp and I love tacos… so why not combine my love of shrimp with my love of tacos and then {as one of my favorite television chefs likes to say….} kick it up a notch! I have made these a couple times now and I like them more each time I make them.

These spicy shrimp tacos have some kick to them, but are balanced out by the addition of avocado and sour cream. If you love the spice you should go easy on the sour cream and avocado. I like a nice balance and I love avocado… so I tend to be a little bit of an avocado hoarder when it comes to these tacos. My husband on the other hand likes to eat these with cheese only, but then again he really loves the spice.  

spicy shrimp tacos recipe

Monday, July 15, 2013

Packing for Labor and Delivery with the BFFL Bag #Review

It took me quite a while to pack my hospital bag for baby Julia’s arrival. With baby #1 I was packed and ready way ahead of time and with baby #2 I was packed and ready a couple weeks early as well. But with baby #3 I seemed to be on a completely different laid back schedule. I simply did not get around to completely packing my hospital bag until the BFFL Co sent me my Mommy/Delivery BFFL Bag for review. That seemed to get me motivated… or at least take some of the pressure off of making sure I had absolutely everything I could possibly need.

On June 19th I headed into the hospital to deliver my baby girl Julia with a little red suitcase filled with a change of clothing for me, a change of clothing for my newest bundle of joy, some swaddle blankets, and my BFFL Bag. I felt very prepared.

I was very excited when my Mommy Delivery BFFL Bag arrived. I immediately opened it up to check everything out. I was pleasantly surprised by what was inside. A lot of thought had obviously gone into the creation and stocking of this bag. Once in the hospital I was even more happy that I had this bag.

Packing Delivery with the bffl bag

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Celebrating Independence Day

Every 4th of July my family heads up north to Wisconsin to watch fireworks over the lake and to spend time with my family. It is a family tradition that I love and look forward to each and every year. Sadly this annual trip did not happen for our family this year. We decided to stay at home as we had a brand new baby and did not want to have to deal with the stress of traveling with a newborn.

Instead this year we dressed the boys in red and walked in our neighborhood Fourth of July parade with my husband’s family. The boys rode their decorated vehicles and I strapped on my baby carrier and walked with baby Julia. It was a very low key laid back holiday and it was nice not to have to stress or worry about anything. We ate, hung out, and even played some family friendly games.

Independence Day Red White and Blue shirts

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Easy Enchiladas {Freezer Friendly} #Recipe

Life at home with three littles {all 4 years old and under} can make meal time a little hectic. Especially when one parent is completely sleep deprived and there is a newborn in the house. Regardless, people still have to eat. As a result of my current chaotic household status, I have taken a look at my older freezer meal recipes and decided that I needed to add some new ones into the mix.

With the need to keep it simple in mind I asked some friends for their favorite freezer meals to get my creative juices flowing… and as a result I have thrown together this incredibly easy chicken enchilada freezer meal.
Easy Enchilada Freezer Friendly Meal Recipe with Picture Tutorial

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