babies

weekend road trip

i’m sort of the opposite when it comes to social media. i’m the opposite of people who only post glamorous pictures of themselves or make sure to share all the awesome, interesting things they do and places they go. i don’t know if it’s because i’m overcompensating… trying extra hard to not be that person, or if because i just really love to take and share pics of my kids in those everyday moments.

last weekend all five of us ventured out on an aggressive weekend trip to new york and new jersey. we drove down together, then i spent the day with girlfriends in the city while mike stayed with family and watched the kids. the next day we swapped it out and mike went to the pats-giants game while i tended the coup.

i had a BLAST with my friends in nyc.. took zero pics (aside from a million of my little bride to be lindsey in wedding dresses, but those are not for sharing!!) but back in new jersey with all mike’s cousins, i took a bunch of pics of the kids together because they were just so so cute.

all of the girls were obsessed with bay. they passed her around and played peek-a-boo for hours on end. bayla was so chill about it.

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maddie is 6. she and dane were attached at the hip the whole weekend. i never expected them to play so well together. it was ADORABLE.

dane and mad

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and that’s all i got for a weekend update! despite having monday off, this week is feeling looong. we are sticking around this weekend and i am SO looking forward to it. a little cleaning, a little thanksgiving prep, a little christmas decorating a LOT of eating that baby’s cheeks!

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does this mamma-baby selfie capture how utterly exhausted i am? IMG_0944

to all the other moms who have done this… the working full-time, the nursing, the pumping, the endless washing of bottles and parts, the three-year-old, the sweet, cuddly baby, the neglected first born (bull dog), the dinners that don’t self-cook and house that won’t clean its self (to name a few) all with a very unreliable sleep pattern. PROPS. this is freakin’ hard.

i’ve been doing some soul-searching and researching how to make this work. i still have a ways to go, but a couple things that have helped:

peapod.

i’m an amazon prime junkie and i generally hate paying a delivery charge of any nature, but these days, saving the trip to the grocery store is well worth $6.95. i will definitely do it again.

i also went ahead and spent nearly $1,000 fall shoe shopping on zappos! don’t worry, the boots i kept were only $150… i ordered 4 pairs to try. free shipping and free returns. zero time in a store. boom.

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side note: thank you, boot people, for the “wide-calf” (or my favorite “wide shaft”) option for tall boots. i never use to be able to wear these and now there is a whole slew of options.

this was my cart:

boots

1. Rockport Tristina Gore $225  runner-up. super comfortable. can tell they are great quality. just didn’t love enough for the price 2. Sam Edelman Penny $150  winner. liked better in person. perfect width. comfortable enough 3. Rockport First Street $249.95 fit well. has large, darker colored stretchy piece in back that i didn’t love the look of. but really like the lighter camel color. 4. Johnston & Murphy Bree $348 I love these boots but they didn’t fit 🙁 i knew it was a long shot since they are not in my beloved “wide calf” category. somewhat relieved given the price-tag.

so i feel like i have fully mastered online shopping. i may never enter a store again. does anyone have any other hacks for me? my sister has been freezing a whole week’s worth of crock pot dinners on sundays.  i read about a mom who dresses her kids for the next day before bed. no jammies. (crazy or genius?)

i feel like the key to the week is sunday. you have to PREPARE. going into the work week is like going into battle when you have multiple kids. my problem is we’ve been away almost every weekend and then on sunday its impossible to stay motivated because, football. and because, pumpkin beer.

this weekend, my little guy was really sick… three straight days of a 103 degree fever. needless to say, the weekend was not as productive as it might have been and i am SO short on sleep. send me your working mom hacks… i’m all ears.

cape cod 2015 : brewster bay, baby bay, lots of dane, etc.

baby bay was supposed to come in may. MID may – a week early. that was my plan. which would mean that she would be 6+ weeks by late june when i was planning on spending the week with my sister liz in the cape while some old friends were in town vacationing as well.

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as you know, bay chose to wait until JUNE to be born, so there i was with a three year old, a three week old, and my sister who was no use because she had a baby and a three year old of her own. luckily, we got a couple days from my very helpful little sis (who feeds us) and our mom (who is very good at entertaining 3 year olds with weird crafts (have you heard of magic noodles?)).

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so we survived and even enjoyed ourselves at times. the summer was off to a good start. it was sure to be a very special summer with my kids and nephews and more beach time than ever before.

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its really not true – how i just said my sister was no use – she did practically all of the snack-packing and game-planning. you really need to have your sh*t together when planning a beach trip with kids. spending a few hours at the beach with two three year olds is a delicate art (toy ratios, direction of sandwich slice, color of sippy cups… all elements that can make or break your day).

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so liz & i enjoyed most of the week and spent time with the colantos and some other fun families. photo cred to lizzy c for these next three pics bc i basically tend to only take pictures of dane and literally never a grown up…

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mike was finally able to join us for the weekend. he and dane did some golfing and twilight surfing… sunsets on the bay are glorious.

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the following week was the 4th of july when we take our real vacation each summer. mike had the full week off to spend in brewster with us (hallelujah) and all the grandparents visited for a few nights.

the boys went on a pirate adventure which dane loved and riley was not so sure about…

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we did sparklers, s’mores, and ice cream …

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this is the cozy spot we made for bay one afternoon… she was peacefully napping under the shade of an umbrella, but her poor little face got sun burnt. #momfail. she healed quickly and never seemed bothered by it, but word to the wise.. sun umbrellas do not necessarily protect from uva/b rays! overall, bayla was such a trooper during all of our beach trips.. a lot of beach nursing and napping.., she was a good baby.IMG_5313

it makes me so happy watching dane play at the beach for hours on end. its exactly what i pictured 5 years ago when we bought the beach house.IMG_5320

this is a nickerson state park pond swim with shakey…IMG_5511

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and bayla’s first traditional picnic table photo shoot…IMG_5570

look at one-month-old bay… she looks like such a little alien. how quickly they grow…
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the summer was awesome. it was extremely challenging at times making everything work with a newborn, often on my own, but i would do it a hundred more times given the chance. i am missing the summer so much. i almost get a pang in my stomach when i think about it i miss it so much… 

going back to work has been so hard on me. for three months bayla was figuratively and literally attached to me and now i just feel so empty all day without her. i’m waiting for it to get easier. if it doesn’t, then maybe there will be some major life changes. i’m not sure. but i know that all that matters are these two kids and finding a happy, healthy balance for our family. to be continued……

i’m so pregnant

i wrote this in early may and never finished it. likely because i was going to bed at 8 every night or maybe because i was waiting to add the perfect picture of me and my adorable pregnant belly (ha, non-existent). well – spoiler alert: i am currently holding the most perfect 2 month old baby girl and typing with one hand in effort to post something/anything because its been sooo long! balya logan was born one FULL WEEK late on june 3 weighing 7lbs 14oz.

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for posterity’s sake – here is my silly 37 week self thinking baby bay would come on time or… pah… early…

i feel like i’ve been pregnant forever, but at the same time, i sort of can’t believe my second (and last) pregnancy will be coming to an end any day now. i have no doubt that the birth of these babies (meaning dane and this feisty baby girl jabbing me as we speak) will be the best two moments of my life, so while pregnancy isn’t my favorite thing (especially the 37wk+ kind of pregnancy), i will still miss it in a weird way.

i think fridays are awesome. even though i have to go to work, i have the whole weekend to look forward to… by saturday, its almost like the weekend is already over, and sunday.. forget it.. full-blown monday-dread (you too? no? should i be looking for a new job?). well, these final hours of pregnancy are sort of like a friday. i’m extremely uncomfortable, but giddy with anticipation. once the baby is born, i know i will blink and my maternity leave will be over, then i will blink again and it will be her 3rd birthday party, a few blinks later she’ll be a teenager and hate me… but for a few short weeks (or days?!) all of the chubby, drooly, sleepy, swaddled baby-ness is ahead of me.

i never held vegetables up to my belly or documented either pregnancy much at all and i don’t regret it. i’m not really into that, but i just wanted to write this so i could some day revisit myself in this unique time. a mother of one perfect little boy awaiting the big unknown of who is tumbling around in my belly and what life will be like with two little humans to love a disgusting amount.

i’m so happy and lucky and grateful to be having a baby in few weeks. i never want to forget how much i wanted this baby (GIRL!) and how good life feels even tho i’m the size of a house with the worst acid reflux imaginable and the inability to sleep despite extreme, perpetual, exhaustion. i’m so much more excited this time around because i know just how much you can love another human and to be given the chance to love 2 just seems like more than i deserve. blah blah blah hormones blah blah.

oh pregnant stephanie.. aren’t you sweet.

well, almost three months later… here she is!!

IMG_5732she is so smiley and sweet and just so so pretty. strawberry blond hair, bright blue eyes and lashes for days. i swear, she is mine.

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it has been best-case-scenario with dane. no signs of jealousy and nothing but love from big brother. three has had its challenges, don’t get me wrong, but when it comes to the baby i couldn’t be more proud of how quickly dane has adjusted. the meet & greet in the hospital had us a little nervous… he wasn’t so sure. hardly acknowledged the baby, wouldn’t touch her and certainly would not give her a kiss.

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since she came home it has been nothing but kisses and man-handling!

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this has been the most amazing summer. i’m feeling very…. complete.

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we’ve had so much beach time between brewster & martha’s vineyard and so much family time thanks to my sister’s 5 month-old and her extended maternity leave. hopefully i will find some time to share more of our summer adventures here before its back-to-school time! but for now, my new little adventure is hungry…IMG_5789

nursery odds & ends :: tan and triangular

but first… look at this little human my sister made..
he’s pretty cute and perfect and impossibly small. dane was mostly indifferent toward him, but when we let him “hold” him, he had the biggest smile on his face. it was the sweetest thing i’ve ever seen. i think i’ll lose my **** when its his baby sister he’s holding.
now onto the material things…
there has been no progress in the nursery what-so-ever, but i have been snatching up random treasures – all on sale – to eventually use in the new baby’s room. i feel like i should share with you now in case the sales don’t last and you want to get in on the action.
i hope this doesn’t come back haunt me… the fact that i don’t have a plan for what goes where… this on this wall, that on the other… i just love this neutral, geometric vibe and have been accumulating these accessories over the past few weeks in hopes i can make it all work.
and can we talk about sales? have you heard the whole “you should only buy something on sale that you would be willing to pay full-price for…?” this makes zero sense to me. yes, you can be tricked/psychologically manipulated by sales… i’m sure i have been, but i also know that i would not have paid full price for any of this stuff… and i don’t see how this means i shouldn’t be buying it on sale. i like it all. a lot. that’s why i bought it. on sale. if  you would have paid full price for something, wouldn’t you – in most cases – already own it? everyone has a price they are willing/not willing to pay, right? whatever. [end rant]

diamond shag rug (6’7″x9′) $576 $144
(looks like only 70% off these days… i got it prez day wkend for 75% off)

nesting hexagon shelves $160 $119.99
(this was an impulse buy… i think i ordered it on my iphone while sitting on the bathroom floor during dane’s bath (its too easy) i hope i love them.. i think i will).

magical thinking geo sol mirror $49 $19.99
(give me all of the triangles)

magical thinking wall banner $18 $12

nate berkus fringed wall art $34.99 (+10% off today)
(i got the bigger sized one a while back… i can’t find it anywhere anymore.. sold out?)

the purple stuff you see above, i don’t own.. i threw them in there just to mix in some plum which will be the accent color… there will be a plum accent wall, etc etc.

so i really just need a light (to replace the boob) and black-out shades for the windows. then we just need to find the time to paint and pull it all together. time time time.

to be continued.

(no affiliate links or anything btw)

oh, happy st. patricks day!

initial nursery thoughts and some sales

i’m having a baby girl in may. did i mention that? it almost feels too good to be true.. like i won the lottery or something.. (even though like two million baby girls are born in the u.s. every year). i am so excited to have this baby. it feels so different from the first time around… just because i now know how awesome it is (and this time i get braid hair and buy tutus). oh man. pinch me. the very early stages of brainstorming the nursery look something like this. naturals and neutrals with a plum accent and a little whimsy here & there.

i have time, so i want to take my time with any purchases… i really shouldn’t need to buy much but man its hard once you start poking around. here are some sales i feel compelled to share.

land of nod changing pad cover i bought this, obviously. what a crazy sale. even with shipping (i hate paying for shipping) it was a great price.

hdc elephant hamper i’ve had my eye on this. i’ll probably buy it at this sale price, but haven’t committed yet.

uo rug all rugs are 25% off. i think this 5×7 would work.. i really like the geometric pattern (you can’t really discern in the pic above) which is pretty much the same as the rug on my wall. i’m going to keep my area rug options open for now though.

pottery barn kids light got excited about this one, then realized its just for the shade.. the base is another $40. but still awesome and maybe worth it.