Thursday, October 30, 2014

Five Months!

Last Saturday, Eden turned 5 months old! She is growing up so fast and so big. At her 4.5 month check up a few weeks ago, she was in the 99th percentile for weight (and head circumference) and 87th percentile for weight. So basically, if there were 100 babies in a room, she would be the chunkiest one. Isn't that a funny mental picture? <I was worried her pediatrician was going to be concerned about her weight, but all she said was: "You must have really good milk!">

This baby is the sweetest and such a joy. Holding her, playing with her, reading to her and dressing her are some of my very favorite things. How kissable are those chubby cheeks? :)

She still loves to be outside and is fascinated by the colorful and crunchy leaves. She has started to try to roll over, but isn't too interested in practicing that trick yet. We started using the bath time "lounge chair" in the tub instead of the sink insert and she loves it. She has so much fun kicking and splashing in the water. She loves the cats and when we help her "pet" them. 

The biggest development since last month is our discovery of the magical, God-sent, Snugabunny Swing. We got it a few weeks ago in an effort to get her to take longer naps alone. It didn't work for naps, but we discovered that if we put her in the swing after a morning feeding, she will sleep-in for hours. A few weeks ago, I put her in there around 8:30am and she slept in there til 2:00pm (that was on swap day, it was amazing!). She will usually sleep in the swing until at least noon, and sometimes later. She's still a night owl - if she goes to sleep before 11:00pm, she treats it like a nap and will be up and ready to party in 30-45 minutes. If she didn't sleep in til noon, I would be concerned about her getting enough sleep.. but since she will sleep in that swing for hours (and give us some good baby-free hours in the morning), we're just rolling with it for now. Her doctor thinks she got the night owl gene from her dad :)

Previous monthly updates:

Four Months

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Living Room Inspiration : Corner Shelves

In our living room, we have this little nook that we have set up as a "reading nook" right now. <I posted about it here a few months ago.> We like how it's set up now, but have talked about trading in the big, comfy chair for two smaller "accent chairs" in that corner. We've had that chair for many years and it's served us well.. but it may be time for a change. 

Another thing I'd like to try in that little nook are corner shelves. A few weeks ago, I saw the the most beautiful corner shelves featured on the A Beautiful Mess Official Instagram feed. How gorgeous does this look? I just love those corner shelves! 

Below is our current corner nook set up beside the inspiration:

So now I'm on the hunt for budget-friendly accent chairs that will fit in that corner well and look good under some corner shelves! Since we moved in last December, this house has been so much fun to decorate and make "our own". I like documenting the little transitions here to remember the fun and creative process of inspiration, searching and "perfecting". It's a silly hobby but I love it :)

Hope you have a great Tuesday!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Easy Rice & Beans

You know those "go-to" dinners you have that are always good? The ones that make you always want to have the ingredients on-hand so you can throw it together on a whip? This Rice & Beans meal is one of of favorites. We've been making it for years - ever since my SIL made it for us and got us totally hooked.

It comes together pretty quickly and easily, and you can make it your own by tweaking the amount of spice you throw in. A tip though.. don't skip the cilantro! I've done it in a pinch and it's not nearly as good.

2 cans of black beans, drained but not rinsed (we like the Goya kind)
1 bunch of cilantro, finely chopped
1 white onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tsp cumin (more or less depending on how spicy you like it!)
A splash or Sriracha sauce
Salt/pepper to taste
Jasmine rice (we get the boil-in-a-bag packs and make 3 bags)
Chopped avocado and tomato for toppings

Saute the onion for a few minutes first, then add the garlic. Cook together until tender, not browned. Add the black beans, keeping a little bit of the liquid. Add spices and taste it - add more spice depending on your tastes. Add the cilantro last.

After the rice is  ready, put some in the bottom of a bowl and top with the bean mixture, tomatoes and avocado. Pretty easy (aside from some chopping) and so good!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Baby Hands..

Have you ever noticed how everyone loves baby feet? Their tiny little toes and toenails are undeniably adorable. For me, though.. it's Eden's hands that can melt my heart.

The way she always had them by her face when she was a tiny newborn. 

The way they looked in her little newborn mittens to protect her from scratching herself. 

The way she rests her hand on my chest when she's nursing. 

The way she grabs at her toys and tries to inspect them (or eat them). 

The way she rubs her eyes when she's sleepy. 

The way she smiles (and sometimes half giggles!) when I wash her hands in the bath or wipe them with a baby-wipe. (I think it tickles). 

I love her feet, but there is just so much life and humanity in her hands. That sounds strange, I know.. but when you're pregnant and there is a baby the size of a pea growing inside of you, it's hard to imagine that baby as a real, live person. 

But here she is! Learning and growing everyday. Using her hands to help her discover the world around her. 

I can't wait to see what those tiny hands do in the years to come. Hands that will learn to color, to write, to build and to help others. And someday, she may use those hands cradle a baby of her own. Another baby with tiny, amazing hands and the most adorable little fingers. 

What a lucky mom I am.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Fall Frock Party

Last weekend, I hosted a Blogger & Friends Frock Party (Clothing Swap) with help from Abby and Jessica.  We had a great turn out and as always, so much fun! I cleaned off some of my clothing racks and Abby brought her double rack, so we were very organized this time.

I made mixed bean chili and assorted other snacks, and Abby and Jessica (and Jessica's sister Nicole!) made and brought the sweets. The chili was a fantastic excuse to get out my collection of Vintage mugs and put them to good use. I didn't get any good pictures of our chili/drink station, but it was really cute - complete with the Vintage mugs and mason jars of course. :) (Edit: Abby got some great pictures! Check them out here!)

Thanks to those of you who came out and brought such great items to swap! We had a great mix of bloggers and friends/family members. A few other local bloggers who were in attendance:

Lindsay and Skyla from Dearest Darling
Abby from Eleanor's Boots
Jessica from Midwest Muse
Lauren of NOTO Boutique
Rebekah from Finding Inspiration
Anna of Twist Creative

Hope you have a great weekend!

On a totally unrelated note, will you join me in prayer (or "positive vibes" if that's more your style) for the release of the kidnapped Nigerian girls (Remember #BringBackOurGirls)? There have been reports (here, for example) that a cease-fire and release agreement may be reached, hallelujah!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Record Cabinet Inspiration

You'd think that with all the thrifting I do, I would have found the perfect Record Cabinet by now.. nope. I've been on the lookout and anything I've found has been too big for the space I'm looking to fill. We're currently using an old TV stand as a Record Cabinet and while it looks fine, I would still love to find a great retro style piece to do the job! Something like one of these:

We have a great space in the dining room where we keep our current record set up. Our dining room is very open to the living room and kitchen, so when we play records you can really hear the music throughout the downstairs. 

The set up we have now has worked great since we moved in last December, but one of these days I know I am going to find the perfect Record Cabinet! Northeast Ohio people, let me know if you ever stumble upon one :) 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Recent Thrifted Finds

Whenever I have some "baby-free" time, I love spending some quality time thrifting. It's therapeutic shopping for me (and it's even more fun now that I have a good reason to buy baby clothes!). During my last trip, yellow was one of the half off colors at the Village, and I scored both this cool purse and this pretty necklace for half off!

The bag was priced at $1.50 so I got it for 75-cents (!) and the necklace was priced at $5.00 so I got it for $2.50! I love all the colors on the bag - it's so unique and really sturdy. 

I also got some adorable little sweaters for Eden during that trip too, I'll share those soon!

I hope you have a great and restful Sunday!