Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Give Thanks

We have a lot going on at my house...lots of stress and stupid grown-up woes.  But we also have a LOT to be thankful for (the number one obviously being miss Lyla).  I want to remember that even when Thanksgiving has come and gone.
Last year for Thanksgiving Lyla was still in my belly, but this year she got to experience Turkey Day firsthand.  Aurora was there too (oh, and Amanda and Quentin...but to Lyla, "Ah-wah-wah" is most important).  The girls visited great grandparents, met cousins for the first time, ate lots of mashed potatoes, and had a blast!

I pretty much died when I saw Aurora in her first pigtails! (ok...so more like, I almost CRIED because she looks so grown up!)

Best friends.

Finally some photo evidence of Lyla standing on her own!  She also took some steps this past week (*tear).

Our family.

Amanda, Aurora and Quentin

This group of cuties are ALL of the great grand children on my mom's side (I still can't believe we got 5 children to sit still all at once for a photo)!

We spent Friday with Andrew's family for our second Thanksgiving.  Lyla got an early birthday/Christmas gift from her Aunt Jen--a rocking horse.  She is in LOVE!  I can't hardly stand the cute....

Oh, and to add to the photo-overload, Lyla and Aurora had matching horsey outfits (Amanda thrifted them, both originally from Gymboree)!  

Lots to be thankful for these days.


Monday, November 28, 2011

Sponsored Post: How to Save a Memory

Since the advent of the digital photo, I have been overwhelmed by all of the photos I have saved onto my computer and the fact that I rarely share them, other than the occasional blog or Facebook upload. I love taking photos, and I love the immediacy of digital (as well as the possibility of editing before sharing!), but I also find photo upload sites to be impersonal and just another place to store and "forget" my photos.

Thanksgiving 2011: Aurora's first pigtails, and the first time all of my grandparents' 5 great-grandchildren were all together in one place. It was definitely a holiday to remember!

That's why I was really excited to learn about LiveOn, a website meant to preserve memories and share them only with people you want to share them with (aka your tribe).

What I loved about the site is that it isn't about just storing photos, but about organizing your memories: important moments in time, milestones, events, etc. It's perfect for me because it allows me not only to collect photos, but to write/journal a little about events as well. There are some additional really neat features, including, my personal favorite, "Life Questions," where you respond to a variety of questions, like: "What is the most meaningful gift you ever received?" or "As a kid, what was your favorite grade/year and why?" The site will store these memories and musings even after you're gone. They keep everything in an online storage vault, which can be accessed even after you pass away--while that's hard to imagine for me, as someone just about to turn 30, it's also a pretty unique quality of the site. I always worry about my computer dying and losing all my photos or writings, but with LiveOn, you are guaranteed that your memories are safe!

As a child, Jayme and I would love sorting through old pictures and scraps from our grandmothers.  In today's digital age, it's way less likely our grandchildren and great-grandchildren will be doing that--but LiveOn is like an online shoebox where you can store those precious things to share with your loved ones. 

Thank you again to LiveOn for sponsoring this blog post. Please click here to learn more about sharing and preserving your most important memories. I was selected for this sponsorship by Clever Girls Collective. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Just to say thanks...

Close Shave

Hello, it's Amanda (and Aurora!). It's been a while since we posted. We (well...me) have been shopping for and stocking the vintage shops and blogging occasionally on our other blog, but not doing a lot of talking here.

The truth is that Aurora is just a big bundle of movement and almost every picture I get of her is blurry! Fortunately, I was able to capture this scene one quiet, sweet morning last week:

On Monday and Wednesday mornings, Quentin goes into work later. Sweet husband that he is, he lets me sleep in on those days and has morning time with Aurora. They eat breakfast and play together and then come and wake me up. "Coffee, mama?"  Those are some of my favorite words...Aurora is a morning person, just like daddy, while I am a night owl.

Aurora is starting to mimic a lot of actions and words (oh, goodness, I need to be more careful with my language). She's such a little smarty-pants! The other day I said, "Hi, babe!" and gave her a kiss, and she said, "Hi, babe!" back.  It's absolutely adorable. She is so much fun these days.

And here she is, already shaving. Sigh. They grow up so fast... ;)

We're about to embark on our Thanksgiving travels...wish us luck! So excited to see Jayme, Lyla and family!  We have MUCH to be thankful for.

We'll say hi again soon! Happy Thanksgiving!

Amanda and Aurora

Monday, November 21, 2011

Xmas Prep

Last year I did pretty much nothing to prep for Christmas.  My due date was December 28 so I was very pregnant and sort of used that as an excuse to barely decorate, not send out cards, etc.  This year I have a feeling things will be the same if not worse-- a tree is out of the question with this very curious almost-one year old crawling around.  But I did decide to do an easy Christmas card.  Yesterday I took some photos of Lyla in her festive Christmas outfit and simply ordered a collage/card on Shutterfly.  Just wanted to share one photo for now--this one shows her little bottom tooth that's popped through!  Looks like the top front ones are close on their way too....

(A little over exposed/washed out...I haven't got my camera settings figured out.  But the expression is priceless!)


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Lyla Georgette {11 months}

Love a little just-up-from-her-nap, rosy-cheeked baby!  
Today Lyla is 11 months old.  This past month her biggest milestones include (all of which I have no photo evidence, so I'm filling in with some random favorites from the past month):

1.  Getting her first tooth.  This involved lots of crying, crazy fever (which resulted in a terrifying little fever seizure followed by a trip to the doctor, followed by a diagnosis of a urinary tract infection... sheesh),  and refusal to eat (but trust me, she nursed enough to make for the lack of regular food).  All I can say is--holy crap...we still have a whole mouthful to go?!

This poor gal's poor gums--they are SO bumpy and crazy looking!  I think more teeth are definitely on their way.  Oh...and in case you were like "oh wow!  She's in her pj's in her crib!"--it is certainly not because she slept there.  It is full of toys and she plays there if I need to go put in a load of laundry!
2.  Standing on her own.  So funny how babies just decide one day to let go and stand hands-free.  She didn't even think twice--she just let go and stood there like it was nothing.  Lyla is one confident baby--once she's standing, she excitedly bounces and claps. We're trying to coax her to take a step, but so far no luck (Is that a bad idea?  Is a walking baby ten times harder to chase than a crawling one?).

I think I have a million photos of her standing at the front door like this.  And also--I photograph her in pj's a lot!  Trust me, we get dressed everyday...but something about babies in pajamas that makes me want to grab the camera.

3.  Adding to her vocabulary.  New words include:  "up" (so now she follows me around the house saying "pupp up up pup") and "nana" (banana).   If I'm in the kitchen, making my morning coffee, she crawls up to me and does her sign for 'eat' and says "nana?  nana?" Cutest ever!!

Oh those bangs...always in her eyes!  
I am just ever so slightly starting to think about a 1st birthday celebration.  Part of me is feeling super emotional and sad about it but the other day, as Lyla napped in my arms, I looked down at her and thought "she is still SUCH a tiny little peanut"....and not just in size--I really still feel like she is such a baby.  She needs me so much and I love that.  Being an attachment parent (having her sleep in our bed, nursing her on demand, carrying her everywhere) is trying at times but I think that the connection we have is so much stronger because of it.  And I think it will stay that way no matter how old Lyla is.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Shop Preview: Holly Jolly Holiday

It's almost Thanksgiving...which, in our crazy-busy lives, basically means it's almost Christmas.  I spent some time tonight scouting some vintage holiday dresses for Aurora on Etsy, and no doubt, some of you are looking for the perfect outfit for Christmas photos or holiday events.  We've added some beauties to the shop, and there are more to come...

See something you like?  Well, then....................... SHOP!

Holly Cardigan, Size 18 months...coming soon!
Little Lady Plaid Cardigan, Size 2-3T...coming soon!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lyla Style: Legwarmers

I keep seeing DIY's for legwarmers around the internet.  Simply cut the arms off an old sweater and finish the other end and voila!  Homemade legwarmers.  Initially I slipped on these sleeves (from a shrunken-in-the-wash cashmere sweater) on my own legs, but quickly realized they'd be much cuter on Lyla.  I had to take them in a bit, but it was super easy.  Now I have the chicest baby on the block, rocking her heather gray cashmere legwarmers.  (And here she is getting in the way while I attempted to photograph some boots for a post on the Miskabelle blog.)

I have a feeling she will be rocking these legwarmers a LOT this winter!  


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Through Dada's Eyes...

So.  I'm still doing the whole working part-time thing (I first talked about it HERE).  I still don't love leaving Lyla but I must admit that I love that she has time alone with Andrew.  He has been a very hands-on daddy from day one, changing diapers, rocking Lyla to sleep when my boobs just can't handle any more nursing, keeping her occupied while I attempt to have time to myself...  He is pretty amazing.  I knew before I married him he'd be a great dad but WOW, he has taken all my expectations and blown them out of the park (does that saying make sense??  In other words--he is the bomb diggity. Yeah, I just said that.  I am still living in 1999).  What pretty much gets me through my six hour long shift is receiving and anticipating photo texts from Andrew, showing me what he and Lyla are up to.  He has this theory that she likes being out of the house, so most evenings they go do something when he gets done at work.  Usually it's a trip to Walmart (eh...it's right up the street from our house.  I support small/local businesses when I can.  I'm sorry, but sometimes I just want my 99 cent bag of pretzels).  Sometimes she's happy in the photos, sometimes she's eating and most often...she's SLEEPING!  Yep, Andrew's the baby whisperer.  Lyla goes to bed by 8:30 on the evenings she's alone with Andrew.  Granted, he has to hold her/rock her until I get home at 11:00.  But STILL!    Dada's arms are magical.  She seriously just melts when he picks her up.  Passed out in seconds.
I wanted to share some photos that Andrew has sent me over the past few weeks.  A little peek into daddy-daughter time.

1-  Asleep in daddy's arms.
2-  Happy little lady.
3-  At Walmart...with the scarecrows (she calls them "baby").
4-  Yesterday, he was holding her like this, talking on the phone to me on my break and she fell asleep!  This is seriously unheard of around these parts.  She even stayed asleep while he changed her diaper!
5-  Asleep in the car.
6-  Daddy made her a pancake for dinner.  She wasn't impressed.
7-  At Walmart (again!).
8-  Sharing some of daddy's dinner.
9-  At a high school football game, in the front carrier (oh my...wish I could've been a fly on the wall! haha.  Also?  ASLEEP, again!).

Hope you're all having a lovely week!


Friday, November 4, 2011

The Shirt Before the Shirt

I'm trying to decide if I should really use that title.  It's a quote from Jersey Shore and I am totally embarrassed to admit that I watch the show.  I guess I could've just not foreclosed that and then only other people who watch Jersey Shore would get the title (and since they watch too, I don't need to be embarrassed, right?).  Oh well.  I'm using it.  Make fun of me all you want.

SO, Lyla obviously didn't wear her skunk costume all day on Halloween.  But I did keep her festive-looking in black and orange and with candy corn socks!  She was so cute and happy that day...playing with her little pumpkin.
Here is her pre-costume Halloween outfit a.k.a. "this is the shirt before the shirt."

Black tights on a crawling baby don't mix well with our light-colored doggy (I was tempted to photoshop those hairs from her tights in the last photo, but opted not to).  Added to my to-do list for this weekend:  vacuum and mop the floors!  

Happy Friday!


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Shop Preview: Happy Feet

Just popping in to share a sneak peek of some of the cutest little shoes and boots, coming to our shop very very soon! (There is a bit of a moccasin theme, as you can see...)

Clockwise, from top left:  Minnetonka blue kiddo booties (kids), yellow toddler lace up moccasins (toddler), red heart maryjanes (toddler), mustard yellow sueded cutout flats (kids), beaded Minnetonka moccasins (kids) 

You like?  If you have any questions, just message us--readers always get first dibs! :)


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Lyla's First Halloween

I used to LOVE planning my Halloween costume each year.  Some of my favorites included a vampire (complete with slicked back hair and face paint), a pink lady from Grease (I even created the signature jacket from a pink hoodie I already owned), and a mime.  When I got Sophie, our dog, I would create a little headdress for her each Halloween--a pumpkin head, a witch's hat, devil horns... So I thought for sure when a baby came into the picture I would be creating some crazy elaborate costume for her first Halloween.  Well, these days I am lucky if there are no dirty dishes in the sink.  In other words--I barely have time to shower, let alone sew a costume!  Luckily my cousin's kids handed down THE cutest little skunk costume that their kids wore for their first Halloweens.  It had a red bow tie, that I removed and re-sewed onto the ear, to make it a little more girly... but other than that, I just put on overtop Lyla's black leggings and shirt.  Voila!  Cutest. Skunk.  Ever.

My parents always hand out juice boxes (that's the big Kool Aid box in the background).  The trick or treaters LOVE it!  Those kids work up a thirst, running around the neighborhood gathering their candy.

I attached Sophie's little witch hat to a headband to look festive for the occasion. 

These days, Lyla calls EVERYTHING "Baby?" She says it as a question..it is the cutest thing.  I will try to post a video soon!  So any scarecrow or pumpkin was "Baby?!"

The best part was, she didn't even mind wearing the costume!  She crawled around, dragging her little tail and searching for candy (though, she still has no teeth.  So she was just crinkling the wrappers with her hands).  We visited all the grandparents' and she did great!  First Halloween: SUCCESS.


Aurora Style: Party Girl

Not only do Jayme and I borrow stuff from the vintage shop to wear, but we also borrow for our babes.  When Aurora got invited to her cousin Zoe's 2nd birthday, I had to put her in something festive. I remembered that these overalls were her size and decided to try them on: they were perfect!

ruffle tee-hand-me-down, Buster Brown overalls-vintage/Miskabelly, saddle shoes-vintage, hairbow-random Target pack
I know a lot of little girls like to wear dresses for parties, but I knew there would be a lot of playing outside or crawling around on the floor, so pants were a more comfortable option--yet still festive enough for a celebration! :)

Aurora has started to get into colorings and drawing (perhaps she'll be a visual artist like her auntie?), so these pics don't quite do the overalls justice. Here is a closer look--coming to the shop soon:

Light pink corduroy. White heart buttons.  A ribbon applique with a lamb that reads "I Love Ewe."  Heart ribbon ruffle at the back. And the cutest 80s balloon shape. (Size 2T!) By Buster Brown.

I love finding little quirky pieces like these! Kids clothes are so much fun (and we promise to keep adding fun things to the shop!).


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Happy Halloween, Indeed.

Aurora couldn't quite enjoy Halloween last year:  not enough teeth to eat candy, unable to say the words "trick or treat," and not even able to walk around. She was briefly dressed as a mermaid, and then went to bed at 7:00pm.

But this year was a totally different ballgame. It was fate: we found her costume at the thrift store and it fit perfectly.  Then Q got the Halloween bug and decided to go all out.  His enthusiasm got me going too, and an invitation to our neighborhood Halloween parade/block party sealed the deal:  we were doing a family costume!

Meet the Pirates.

Q spent a good part of the previous weekend and evenings during the week turning Aurora's bike trailer into a real pirate ship.  You wouldn't believe the detail that went into this thing, from a plank (with footprints!), to an anchor, a crow's nest, a treasure chest (complete with map!), netted ladders...it was pretty amazing.

My creative husband at work. 
Heading out to the parade.
Pirate Parents.
Our neighborhood was so amazing! We were out of town for Halloween last year, so we didn't get to go, but they organize this parade and a party/potluck for the whole neighborhood. There was a DJ, lots of food, a cotton candy stand, pumpkin carving contest, and prizes for best costume! (Aurora took second place in her category for 3 and under! WOOO!) We had so much fun...and after a day of freezing cold and snow, we were thankful for clear blue, sunny skies.  It was the perfect day.

Aurora and Dada sharing some cotton candy.
Watching the big kids in awe.

She walked right over here with her cookie and sat down.  Yes, she's an extrovert.

Spiderman is always a good friend to have.
Hope you enjoyed this little peek into our very fun and family-filled Halloween! We're already looking forward to next year.

Amanda, Q & Aurora