A Big Boy Room

When we moved, we decided to replicate the decor in Critter’s nursery for Glitter so he needed a big boy room! He kept his furniture but he got a new paint color (Behr’s Durango Blue AKA the color we painted the bathroom in the townhouse) and some new wall art. I have many fond childhood memories of going to Duluth and watching ships enter and exit the harbor at all hours of the day and night. I wanted to replicate some of that in the art for Critter’s room as I hope to someday share those experiences with our children. Also, Marcus and I both agreed that ships looked cool and that Critter would like them.

We are delighted by them!

We used Sara Gardner again (and would again and again, given the opportunity!). If you are interested in working with her, her website is here.


Friday Food Round-Up!

I am kind of a fan of the cook a few times, live off the land-method.

Friday – Chicken Noodle Soup, Salad, Challah

My mother-in-law brought us chicken soup in August, which I promptly froze. I dressed it up with vegetables and noodles. THANK YOU SUE.

Monday – Sesame Chicken Noodles from Cravings, Steamed Broccoli

I actually cooked using the stove.

Tuesday – Tater Tot Hot Dish, Salad

Denise brought this over during the food poisoning incident and I threw it in the freezer. It blessed us this week. THANK YOU.

Miscellaneous – Easy Eggnog Bundt Cake

I made this for a playdate we didn’t get to host. 😦 But it was tasty! For icing mix 2 cups of powdered sugar, 1/4 t cinnamon, a dash of vanilla and whisk in egg nog until it reaches your desired consistency. Shout out to Jeanne for that one.

Two Months (Really Very Belatedly)

Glitter is two months old!

  • She is 12 lbs 2 oz and 24″ tall so she is a bean pole!
  • She is still in six month clothing but I suspect because of her height (or length at this point, let’s be serious she is not standing up no matter how many times Critter exhorts her to do so) she will be in nine month jammies soon.
  • She is a smiler, a lover of songs and reading. A coo-er.
  • She has slept 10 hours straight! More times than I can count on one hand! There are a lot of nights where she wakes after 5-8 hours but you guys this is such a different ball game. Marcus and I are still laughing over the fact that we are sleeping the same amount we were LAST November.
  • She refuses to take a bottle. We’ve been through Avent, Playtex and Munchkin. Up next: Tommee Tippee and Mam. Sooner or later she’ll figure it out.

Tis the Season to be Spending

Over Thanksgiving weekend we ordered a new couch for our family room.

While we did a lot of important/functional design things to the house before/as we moved in, there were a lot of things we held off on until later. Like furnishing the family room and dining room in their entirety (our kitchen table is a card table right now). At some point I’ll write a post about what we did and why but today I’m looking at this from a different angle.

After scouting out couch options the weekend prior, we went back to HOM to make our purchase. When the couch our salesperson ordered rang in at $700 more than the base price (versus the “few hundred more” he indicated it would be), we looked in his expectant eyes and said Absolutely Not We’ll Take The Base Model Please.

This is the season where everyone is buying things.

If we are being absolutely honest, my holiday weekend shopping was straight-up practical.

I took part in an offer to buy $50 in gift cards at Caribou, get $10 free. Great. Free money to buy coffee I am going to drink anyway. $60 for 10 class pass to Blooma, the baby yoga studio where we attend tots yoga and barre class. Fantastic. $6/class for Glitter to nurse or cry through a class is much better than the regular (discounted) $18. Which, frankly, is not a cost I can abide.

15% Target.com on Cyber Monday plus 5% off using my RED Card? Shampoo and Conditioner, Contact Lens Solution, RX Bars, pants for Critter.

$10 gift card for spending $50 at Target? Prenatal vitamins.


Over the next six weeks you are going to be straight-up bombarded. By deals you cannot refuse for things you do not need. By picture-perfect social media posts of friends and friends-turned-strangers buying and receiving gifts or treating themselves to things that you could never fit into your budget.

It is hard because with social media we see all of these things instantaneously. It is hard because we know not the shoes they walk in. You will see the things that people have worked to save all year for and the things people are putting on maxed-out credit cards. And generally, you will never ever know the difference. You will just be told to keep up.

I guess what I am trying to say is that it’s okay to say no to that extra $700 you weren’t planning on. To take advantage of those deals to buy staples for your family. To sit this one out if it’s just not for you.

Friday Food Round-Up!

We cooked so much at the beginning of the week we just ate leftovers for the second half. I also brought a batch of soup and brownies to our neighbors who welcomed a new little one at the beginning of November! And baked some Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins to share with some other neighbors YOU GUYS I AM NEIGHBORING SO HARD RIGHT NOW.

Sunday – Meatloaf, Hashbrowns, Corn, Salad, Ile de Flottante

This was supposed to be a nice family lunch that was instead monopolized by my newly discovered flat tire. THANK YOU MOM AND DAD.

Sunday – Slow Cooker Italian Sausage and White Bean Soup with Escarole from Skinny Taste Fast and Slow, Baguette

Tasty soup, first time I have ever cooked with escarole!

Monday – Slow Cooker Channa Masala from Skinny Taste Fast and Slow, Steamed Rice, Buttered Peas, Trader Joe’s Garlic Naan

Not as delicious as our go to channa masala recipe but we’ll definitely make it again.

Tuesday – Hawaiian Sliders, Tater Tots, Salad

We used turkey and cheddar because that is what we had in the house.

What I’ve Been Reading

So I’m not averaging the book per week that I was during my last maternity leave. That said the Ken Follett book was like a thousand pages so that has to count for something, right?I really liked reading all of these books for very different reasons so perhaps you’ll find one you like too!

Janesville: An American Story by Amy GoldsteinThe Weight of Ink by Rachel KadishA Column of Fire by Ken FollettThe Four Pillars of Investing by William Bernstein

Stuff That Has Been Useful x2

Nina asked for a post on what has been useful with two babies. Obviously this will change over the year but here is what has been good for the first eight weeks. I didn’t take pictures, we all have to live with it. Sometimes this is just how it goes. Google what you need to.

The Chicco KeyFit Caddy Stroller Frame

It was great the first time because I never had to carry the infant carseat anywhere (I don’t care if I am That Person with a stroller). It is great now because I have my hands free to carry a recalcitrant toddler in the parking lot while I push said stroller!

Rock and Play

We don’t cosleep and both of my babies have gone straight into their cribs day one. However I have this on the main floor because Glitter sometimes will give us a nap in there. On the days I have both children at home and it is just a good all around place to set her when I need to give Critter all of my attention. This has definitely gotten more use the second go-round.

Standalone Freezer

We received this shortly before/after (?) Critter was born and it is a lifesaver. It is where I keep half of my frozen breastmilk. All of our frozen meals. An emergency stash of Critter’s favorite foods (nuggets, waffles, bread).

Stuff That Is Not Stuff

The “emergency” diaper bag I keep in my car with changes of clothes for both children, diapers and wipes, a water bottle and snacks for Critter so that I don’t have to take my whole diaper bag with me everywhere.

A basket of special toys for Critter in Glitter’s nursery. This usually buys me about 30 minutes in the morning when we go upstairs to get baby sister.

A Starbucks gift card so I can plop both kids in the car and get a latte at the drive through window and enjoy 15 minutes of peace sitting down knowing my children are contained.

Second time mamas, what things have been lifesavers for you?