Didn’t see that one coming!!

Wow. I took a REALLY long break from the blog. Exceptionally long. My last update about Hazel was when she was 5 months old… my baby is almost TWO now! What?!?!

Guys, I’m so sorry. But that break was so needed and soooo good for my soul. I took a new full time job, moved to a new state, decided to pour into Young Living, and I just couldn’t blog. My heart and head just didn’t have the room or the time for one more thing. I hope you can understand.

But, now I’m ready. I’ve done a lot of self-reflection lately and realized I’ve really missed this creative outlet. It feels good to have my fingers fly across the keys again and share life with you all again.

I really agonized over how to pick back up and what to write about. Giving an entire life rundown of the past 1.5 years seemed too daunting and honestly not that exciting to write. So I’m just going to pretend we are old friends who have kept tabs on each other and are ready to resume where we left off, no questions asked.

So, what’s the major event from this week? Oh, you know, just a little Spring Cleaning. Barf. I despise cleaning. I would do almost anything else instead of cleaning. But of course, it has to be done. And the universe apparently knew I had been neglecting my house. So it brought rain this past weekend. Buckets and¬†buckets of rain. And so we did all you can really do when it rains… we stayed indoors and we cleaned.

We cleaned our kitchen top to bottom (for real!), tidied the rest of the downstairs, vacuumed and mopped, cleaned our master bathroom and tidied the master bedroom, and cleaned most of the windows in the house. It was a solid two days of work, but y’all… my house looks SO MUCH BETTER. It’s no longer sad and cluttered and dirty. It’s definitely not perfect, but we are worlds away from where it was. It actually looks so good that I’ve been wanting to keep it that way, and maintain it (um what???).

It helps that I wasn’t hacking and coughing and sneezing and dying the whole time we were cleaning. Yes, when we kicked up that dust it was intense, but I didn’t have yucky cleaner smells to add on to the assault. See, we were able to use my Thieves Household Cleaner (thanks, Young Living!!!) to clean everything. Countertops, bathrooms, cabinets, appliances, mirrors, glass… you get the picture. The stuff smells amazing and it’s safe! The kids were even able to get in on the cleaning action. It was so nice to be able to give them a rag and spray bottle and let them go at it! No worries about inhaling fumes or accidentally ingesting anything. And I didn’t feel the need to wipe everything down again after we cleaned it. That definitely is a time saver!

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Want to win a spray bottle of this amazing stuff? Leave a comment below (and include why you’d like to try it!), and I’ll pick a winner at random to receive a care package from me with my all time favorite cleaner. I know, I’m so nice ūüėāūüėú.

Happy Spring!!!

Hazel: Five Months Old

Hazel turned five months old yesterday! No height and weight stats to report since she doesn’t need to go back to the doctor until she’s 6 months old. She’s sleeping pretty well at night; sometimes she goes all night, and sometimes she wakes once, around 4am. She’s also one of the happiest babies I’ve ever met- especially first thing in the morning. We are so blessed to have her in our lives.

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Things we’ve discovered about Hazel this month:

– She still has little to no patience for long car trips, although traveling during her bedtime seems to work out pretty well.
– She can now rotate while on the floor.
– She has also started to scoot- a sort of modified army crawl. She can actually make it across the room, though it takes a lot of time and effort!
– She hates napping at daycare
– When she’s overtired and cranky in the evening (due to the lack of nap), she loves to be held. This pretty much calms her instantly.
– She loves jumping in the bouncer.
– She LOVES her brother.

Hazel: Four Months Old

Hazel turned four months old yesterday! She had her checkup today, and I’m excited to say she’s growing well! She’s still eating well and¬†doing great at daycare.¬† Unfortunately our “sleeping through the night” run has ended, but she’s only waking up once (except for maybe once a week, when she wakes up more than that), and then she’s normally back to bed quickly.¬† We are fortunate that she goes down to sleep with relative ease- it’s not an hour long process like it was with Ian!

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Hazel, 4 months. 14lb 3oz, 25in.

Things we’ve discovered about Hazel this month:

– She is really just a super happy baby.
– Except when she’s in the car seat for a long trip. Then she is NOT happy.
– She has officially busted the capacity of a size 1 diaper. Even though it fits her, it cannot contain her messes, especially overnight.
– She found her giggle- and it’s adorable!
– She loves to sit and stand (obviously with support).
– She is a rolling pro. Put her on her back and she’s on her belly in no time flat. Incidentally, she’s also now a belly sleeper.

{DIY} Hazel’s Nursery Name Art

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You might remember that I was making things to personalize Hazel’s nursery. It used to belong to Ian, so I switched out a few things (the navy blue colors with deep purple) and added a few unique touches just for Hazel.

One of those is the name art I put on the wall. For Ian, I designed his in photoshop, printed it out at the Walmart photo center, and had it custom matted in a stock frame I picked up. I absolutely adored how it turned out, and it moved with him when he got his “big boy” room.

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I was planning to do pretty much the same thing for Hazel. But then, I was on Pinterest (dangerous, I know!), and I saw something that caught my eye. It was wall art for a nursery- not even name art- but I got an idea that I could use that as inspiration for Hazel’s name art!

Fortunately, my husband and I recently finished a slew of home improvement projects, so we had a lot of leftover wood in the garage just taking up space. It’s like it was meant to be!

Armed with a vision in my head, I quickly took some measurements in the nursery and made a sketch. And then, since I’m a visual person, I drew my design on the computer (with the appropriate colors). That part was totally unnecessary, but I found it fun!

Anyway, next I had the fun job of selecting pieces of wood and using power tools!  Hooray for saws!  In the end, I had my 5 pieces of wood and 2 backing/support pieces all cut and ready to be primed and painted.  I admit, that painting is not my favorite, but I took my time with it, and everything turned out so well!

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Next, I had to make letter stencils. My freehand paint skills are non-existent…Silhouette Cameo to the rescue! I measured how tall I wanted each letter and then cut them out on craft vinyl. Then I stuck them to the pieces of wood.

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Next it was time to paint! I couldn’t find the exact shade of purple I wanted, so I mixed some purple and black together to get a nice, deep plum. Then I just kept adding coats until the white was sufficiently covered!

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After letting it dry, I peeled off the vinyl, and ta-da!! We have name art.

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I absolutely love how it turned out. And it was actually pretty simple! Time consuming, to make sure it ended up looking great, but not hard.

Do you have your child’s name displayed in their room/nursery? How did you chose to show it?

Hazel: Three Months Old

Hazel is three months old today! She has her checkup on Monday, but I feel confident she’ll ace it!¬† She’s eating well, doing great at daycare, and sleeps like a champ.¬† I think we’ll see some serious growing when they bust out those growth curves!

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Things we’ve discovered about Hazel this month:

–¬†She is still¬†super smiley and is happy 90% of the time.
– She really hates a wet and/or poopy diaper.
– She gets HANGRY (sorry, honey- you get that from me!).
–¬†She is an amazing sleeper.¬† She has been sleeping through the night for the past month.¬†¬†She goes¬†to bed between 7 and 8, and she doesn’t wake up¬†until¬†after 8am on the weekends (weekdays, I wake her up¬†at 6:10am and feed her¬†so we can get ready¬†for work and daycare).¬† It’s utterly amazing.
РShe loves to sit and stand (obviously with support).
– She coos a lot!
– When she gets cranky (which is rare), she quiets down when Ian sits next to her and starts singing her a song (so adorable to watch!).

Back to the Grind

Well, after being off 10 wonderful weeks on maternity leave,¬†I’ve officially been back to work for a full week now.¬† All in all, it hasn’t been too difficult of a transition.¬† Obviously it’s hard to go from spending all day with my baby to not…but I have found we are all settling into a routine a lot more easily than I expected.¬† The whole two-kids-in-daycare thing had me a little nervous since I had no idea what to expect or how our mornings would go.¬† Fortunately, Ian is old enough (and has been doing this long enough)¬†that he is pretty easy in the morning now.¬† Hazel is young enough that she goes with the flow and doesn’t cause much issue in the morning, either.¬† We are supremely lucky.

Besides the relative ease with which they handle the morning, we are also lucky that we have great sleepers.¬† Ian will sleep through just about anything, and he’s always been that way.¬† Hazel is an absolute angel at night.¬† At just 11 weeks old, we are now going on THREE weeks of her sleeping through the night (for real- when we put her down for bed, she doesn’t wake up again until 7 or so in the morning…since we leave before then to get to work and daycare, we are waking her up in the morning instead of the other way around. In fact, I can sneak in her room around 6 and¬†get in a feeding while she’s still asleep before I have to run out the door to catch my carpool.¬† As I said, we are blessed.).

Even the pumping-at-work situation isn’t awful.¬† My office recently created a pumping room, and while it’s nothing fancy, it is awesome.¬† There are 2 separate “stalls” for pumping, separated by cubicle walls and curtains.¬† Each stall has a desk, chair, and foot stool.¬† Plus magazines to read and a power strip.¬† It’s lovely to have a secure, private area to pump… definitely helps alleviate stress and contribute to pumping success.¬† I now staunchly believe that ALL workplaces should have one of these magical rooms.

All of this makes going back to work¬†that much easier.¬† It’s still hard, and I still miss my babies, but it’s at least bearable.¬† Especially when I hear the ladies at daycare fawn over Hazel or¬†listen to Ian talk about all the fun he had with his friends.¬† These little victories help me focus on the good and ease the “back-to-work-blues”.

Did you go back to work after the birth of your babies?  How did you adjust?

Hazel: Two Months Old

It’s hard to believe it, but Hazel is officially two months old today! She had her checkup and did great- she’s growing so well… 80th percentile for height and weight. Good job, little one!

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Things we’ve discovered about Hazel this month:

– She smiles ALL the time, especially in response to me or Jon smiling at her and saying hi.
– She loves to wiggle and squirm on her play mat.
– She’s gotten good at holding her head up- she is REALLY strong!
– She coos a lot, and you can sort of have conversations with her.
РShe has decided she likes to be swaddled, and now she settles to bed every night with the swaddle.
– She likes to sleep! Most nights she sleeps from 8pm until 5am!
– We are all still completely smitten with her.