I had my wedding dress made into my daughters Baptism gown

June 30th, 2019, the day that my little angel was baptized and welcomed into the Catholic faith. It was a beautiful sunny, summer day, spent surrounded by family and friends. We decided to hold the ceremony at St. Paul’s church in our hometown. This was the church that my husband grew up going to, his little sister was the first baby to be baptized in the church. Father Mike preformed the baptism, we specifically asked for him to share in this occasion for several reasons. 1. He grew up with my mother in law, they lived near each other as kids and would toilet paper peoples houses together. 2. He married my husbands mother and late father. 3. He baptized my sister in law at the same church. We were discussing logistics about Elliot’s Baptism, asking Father Mike to officiate was a no brainer.

I remember when I was trying on wedding dresses, way back in 2016/2017, we were at a local bridal store, Jacquelines Bridal. After trying on the most beautiful wedding dress, falling in love and of course saying “yes”, the owner made a comment about how I could make a baptismal gown out of the dress. That comment stuck in my mind for the next two years.

Now I know that some brides out there wouldn’t even think about cutting up their wedding dress, and at first I thought I would feel the same way. However, the more my dress just say in a closet, I came to terms with the idea of working with someone to create a gown for my daughter.

Fast forward to 2019, we were at a local Vintage Market Days And we meet a local shop owner who makes homemade baby clothes. Janice Collier quickly fell in love with Elliott, she couldn’t get over how cute she is. While she was playing with the baby, I was admiring her beautiful work. I noticed a white gown she had hanging in the back corner of her booth. I turned to my husband and said “Honey, look she makes baptismal gowns.” (I had just started looking for a gown at this point). Janice turned to me and said “Oh yea, I can even make one out of your wedding dress!” And just like that a light bulb went off in my mind. I shared my excitement, took her i formation, left her my number and we went on our way.

Days passed and the idea was stuck in my head. If you ask my husband I am like a dog with a bone, when I get an idea in my head, I can’t let it go. So I decided to reach out to Janice and let her know that I was interested in meeting with her about getting a dress made. We set up a time to meet and I began to look at inspiration on Pinterest for our gown.

The day came for us to meet with Janice, who works out of her home. Together we all sat down, with my dress, the pictures of inspiration, fabric samples, and of course Elliott. It took about an hour or so of sketching, brainstorming and picking fabric for her bonnet, until we finally settled on a design. Janice also walked me through exactly what she was going to do to my dress, and which parts she was going to use.

We decided to use most of the lace from the skirt of my dress for the gown and bonnet. The underskirt was cut and used as part of Elliott’s underskirt. The jeweled belt was removed and use to create a removable belt on the baptismal gown. That night, after we left, I was so excited I don’t think I slept that night.

It took Janice about a week to finish the dress. Now when I tell you this woman is an incredible seamstress, I mean it. She hand drew the patterns for everything. She gently removed the lace from my gown with ruining it, she updates me during the entire process sending me little snapshots of her work. And then the day came when she messaged me and told me that she was all finished. My heart skipped a beat, it was like Christmas Day. I remember we were sitting in the couch, probably watching The Office, while Elliott was playing with her toys. Janice asked if I wanted to see it, and while I originally wanted to wait to see it in person, I said “YES”.

 

Now I am not a crier, I rarely show my emotions to people. But let me tell you, I CRIED. It was so beautiful and exceeded my expectations. Even though it was a completely different gown, I could see my dress in it. The thought that my little girl was going to wear my wedding dress, on her special day was so sentimental. It was perfect.

God Bless Elliott Grace!

Amazon Prime Deal Picks

HAPPY AMAZON PRIME DEAL DAYS! June 15th and 16th Amazon is running so awesome deals on all things from electronics,home, fashion, health and beauty, and everything in between. Since there is SO many great deals I have gone through and laid out some of my favorite picks. I focused mainly on items for baby, because this is a great time to stick up on basics, especially if you are preparing for a new baby! I have categorized items into toys, diapering, clothes, feeding and food. The prices are listed under the picture. If you just click on the picture it should take you to the link on Amazon if you want to purchase any items. I hope you find this list helpful as you embark on your Amazon Deal Days journey!

*this is for Prime Members.*

Toys

$15.99.

$18.99

$10.29
$24.99
$10.54
$19.99 Amazon Exclusive
$29.99
$8.74

Diapering

$46.61
$49.99
$29.61
$9.98
Diaper and Wipes combo- $45.00

$20.99

$9.64
$59.99- this is the diaper bag I have
$29.99

Baby clothes

$22.99
$22.99

$29.99

$34.99

$15.99

$15.00

$15.50

$21.99

$21.99
$30.00
$13.96

$19.26

Feeding

$10.39
$29.99
$14.39
$11.99
$29.99
$30.42

Food

Pack of 6- $20.49
Pack of 8- $18.78

$12.06

$22.47
$23.99
$22.78

Routines for baby? Are they important?

YES! the answer is YES!I am a firm believer in getting baby on a set schedule and routine. Why? Because just like motherhood, being a baby is very unpredictable and stressful. So getting baby into a routine will make life just a bit less stressful. Now I am not a baby expert and I am just speaking about my experiences, so please do not take what I saw as the be-all, end-all. I will say though, let me toot my own horn, that many family members are shocked with how quickly our baby falls asleep at night, and STAYS asleep (except those night of sleep regression). They always say that they can’t believe it and that she is such a good baby, which I mean she is but that is just personal bias.

There are a few things to remember about creating a routine for baby. First thing, baby will pretty much dictate the schedule. Spend the first couple of weeks that baby is home to learn your baby. It is inevitable that you will lose sleep, you will be exhausted, and there is a VERY high chance that you will cry to your spouse or significant other, that you just want so sleep. I know, I have been there, right Cory. But try to remember that this is such a small part of not only your babies life, but yours as well.

Next thing to keep in mind, routines are not static, meaning they never change. Routines are dynamic, changing. I don’t mean that ever week you can expect something different, that would just be madness. I mean that with every development, sleep regression, vacation, and life event, expect a change in your routine. So it is very important to remain super flexible during this time. So if you are like my husband, and crave never changing routine, this may be slightly harder for you. But trust me, you will get used to it, I mean do you have a choice?

I mentioned sleep regression earlier, if you haven’t heard about them yet let me enlighten you for some fun times. Sleep regressions are periods of time, that usually coincide with milestone developments, where baby does not sleep as well as they use to. For example, at three months Elliott (my daughter if you are new here) went to bed at 7:30 -ish and woke up about 1-2 times a night. Crazy I know, but also the reason why routines are important. During her four month sleep regression, when she was teething, learning to crawl and becoming more aware, she was up 3-4 times a night. The fun part was that I had just returned back to work, so I was EXHAUSTED. But I lived to tell another tale.

When can you expect a sleep regression? There isn’t really a hard or fast rule, but these are the general sleep regressions most babies experience:

  • 4 months
  • 8 months (can happen from 8-10 months)
  • 11 month (or 12)
  • 18 months
  •  2 years

Like  I said these are general times, but it is nice to be prepared. Each one is associated with a specific time of brain development. But enough about that, lets get back to routines.

From the moment we brought our little bundle of joy home, we began the process of getting Elliott into a routine. We started with the nightly routine, because she really just ate and slept during the day. Because she is the boss around here, Elliott really dictated the routine. I spent the first few weeks with her tracking when she slept, wake times, and feeding times. That way I could get an idea of her schedule, and I could plan my day accordingly.

Now before I get the details of the routine, I will mention that even our night time routine has changed. Elliott was born in the fall so it was getting dark early, so that made it easier to get her used to night time. Now that it is summer and the sun is staying out a bit longer, we have had to get her adjusted to the sun filling her room when she sleeps. What I am saying is that we do not use black out curtains, because its not always going to be pitch black when baby sleeps, so might as well get them used to it.

Now the moment you have all been waiting for, what does our nightly routine look like? Our routine does not look much different from Elliott was a newborn, once she gets older and does not need as many hours of sleep, we will need to readjust the schedule.

6:30- Dinnertime, puree or finger food

7:00- Bath time, we make sure she is in the bath at the latest 7:15 depending on how long it takes her to eat dinner.

We use Johnson and Johnson Night Time body wash and lotion. I run her diffuser with lavender, or Balance blend ( from DoTerra) depending on her mood. If she is super fussy I will forgo the diffuser and put the oils directly in her bath.

7:30- Story time, I usually nurse her at this time as well because it helps top her off for bed

7:45- (at the latest), in her crib and lights out. Even if she is not asleep we will still lay her in her bed and let her soothe herself to sleep.

She does have a night light and sound machine in her room that runs all night. The light is mostly for me so when I check on her during that night, I do not wake her by turning the light on. The sound machine helps drown out all of the other sounds in the house and in the neighborhood.

Elliott is 8 months, which means she has started her 8 month sleep regression. So while she was sleeping until 4 am, waking up to eat, and returning to bed. Now she is waking up 3 times a night, and at 5 am she is ready to play. It’s a lot of fun.

I kind of worked backwards starting with bed time, because to me it was the most important. Everyone needs their rest, and this helped to ensure we all got a good nights sleep. But let us look at what I think is a pretty standard day time routine.

5 am- Wake up and Play, she usually just crawl around in my husband and I’s bed for a little bit

6 ish am- Nurse,  return her to her crib, after a diaper change, she will fall back asleep

7:30/8 am- Wake up, breakfast, get ready for the day. During the school year my husband would drop her off at daycare during this time as well

8 am- Playtime

9:30- Morning nap

10:45 am- Playtime, nurse

12:30 ish- Naptime

1:30/2- Lunch time, Playtime

3:30- Nurse

4:00- Naptime

5:30- Playtime

6:30 pm- Dinnertime

During the school year, since I am working and Elliott is in daycare, the routine may change slightly, like when she will nap and play time. But her feeding usually stay consistent, for now.

I could go on for longer about sleep training, feeding schedules, sleep regressions, and child development, but I will save all of that for another time.

Like I said, I am not an expert, but this is just what works for our family. My biggest piece of advice for you new moms, is to track your babies habits, create a routine around that information, anticipate sleep regressions, and most of all BE FLEXIBLE. Babies crave routine, in what seems like a chaotic world. establishing and maintaining a routine is the best way to create a comforting environment for your little one.

Good Luck to you and I hope that you are getting the sleep you need! To help you out I have included a link to a daily schedule you can print out and fill in for yourself. This is especially useful for anyone who may be watching your little one while you are away. I would print it and put it in a cheap frame and then use dry erase marker to write on it. Or just write directly on the paper, whatever works for you!

Daily Schedule

If you have any extra tips for other parents desperate for some sleep, drop a comment and lend a helping hand!

 

 

Summer 2019 Beach Must Haves

Are you ready for Summer 2019?

It feels like it was just Christmas, and yet here were are preparing for summer! Depending on were you are, it might already feel like summer. I know it sure is hot here in Raleigh. We have already made our way to the beach for a little fun in the sun. Looking at pictures from a day trip to Carolina Beach, I realized that my beach wardrobe could use a serious overhaul. I need to get some new beach items that compliment my new “mom bod”, because we will be going to pool and beach A LOT this summer.

I have been doing a lot of browsing to find some of the cutest swim pieces this summer. And I have found some really great pieces. I think a lot of these pieces will look great on ANY body shape. I love high-waisted and one-piece bathing suits because they accentuate my waist, while hiding the extra bit of belly I have post baby. Most, if not all, of these bathing suits are under $50, because I am shopping on a budget.

I included sunscreen because I feel that sunscreen is SUPER important to maintaining healthy skin. I have been slacking with wearing the proper amounts of sunscreen but this summer it is my goal to take better care of my skin in the sun.

I was introduced to the COOLA brand about two years ago, when I got a sample in my Birchbox. It smells SO good, it is not super heavy on my skin, and its easy to apply. They have a ton of different types if sun screen, for your face, body, lips and even baby. I included the link to for these items through La La Daisy , a discount beauty product website. I 100% recommend shopping for your high end beauty products through this site. If you use code ” TANNERMMANN” for 15% off.

That yellow one piece from Belk is giving me all the “Saved By the Bell” vibes, RIGHT?

To shop these looks, click on the image. It will take you to another page with the links to each item. I know that I will definitely be ordering the items with the heart next to them.

If you buy anything from this post, tag me in a picture in Facebook or Instagram.  I would love to see you rocking your new looks!

Instagram: @everythingwillbeokular

Facebook: Alyssias19

 

25 Random Facts About Me

Everything Will Be Okular is going to be six months old soon. I figured I would do a fun random facts blog post so that you guys could get to know me a little better. When you’re done reading please comment a random fact about yourself, I’d love to get to know more about you!

1. I was born in Sioux City, Iowa, but I lived in Northeast Ohio most of my life.

2. I am the middle of three children, I have a younger brother and older sister.

3. Growing up I was a total tomboy, I loved getting dirty and causing trouble.

4. My nickname growing up was fingers because I touched EVERYTHING. I still have to touch things when I go out, I don’t know why!

5. I am double jointed in my toes, I can walk on on the knuckle of my toes.

6. I couldn’t read an analog clock until I was like 19

7. I used to believe that the round hay bales on farms were baby elephants because someone told me they were. I was very young.

8. I HATE grape, lime, lemon and orange flavored things. They make me nauseous.

9. Towards the end of my pregnancy I craved hot dogs ALL THE TIME.

10. When I was little, up until I was 13, I played soccer all year round. I was actually really good and had a lot of potential. But in high school I gave it up for dance line (bad idea)

11. My husband and I lived two miles away from each other and didn’t meet until 2013, when we both worked at the local DQ.

12. As a little girl I was convinced I was old than my sister because my birthday was in January and hers was in October. She is 18 months older.

13. My best friend, Jessica, and I first bonded over the Jonas Brothers.

14. I played soccer in college but quit due to a head injury.

15. My favorite show growing up was Spongebob Squarepants.

16. The first time I ever left the US was 2017 on my honeymoon, we went to Barbados.

17. My maiden name is Springer, so every new person I meet asks if I am related to Jerry Springer.

18. My grandma calls me her “little apple dumpling”

19. I grew up around women who were always baking and cooking, so I am very knowledgeable in the kitchen.

20. I am allergic to shellfish, but I want to try crab legs SO BAD!

21. The first computer game I ever remember playing was “Backyard Soccer”.

22. My favorite food is probably cheese, which is unfortunate because I am lactose intolerant.

23. When I was little we used to live with my grandma, like my whole family. I used to stay up late and tell these wild stories until I fell asleep.

24. My favorite musical is Wicked, but I’ve never actually seen it.

25. Some people say I am like the music rain man, because I can name almost any song just by listening to the first 15 seconds.

That was fun! But also really hard to think of things to tell you guys! I hope you guys got a good laugh. I can’t wait to hear some of your random facts about you, remember to drop one in the comments!

8 common questions new moms have about breastfeeding and more

I recently attended an event put on by the Raleigh Moms Blog, called Bloom. The event is geared towards new and expectant mothers. This is the fourth year in a row that the Bloom event has been held in Raleigh. Wake Med was a partner for the event, so naturally it was held at Wake Med North. The event was amazing and super informative. There were several local vendors in attendance from swim lessons, counseling services, child care, photographers and many more! It was the perfect one stop for any mom looking for local support services. I highly recommend Bloom to any mom who feels overwhelmed, and does not know where to start when preparing for baby. 

The event had two main sessions, one of which was a lactation panel. Being a breastfeeding mother, I felt it was appropriate that I sat in and learned more from a local lactation consultant. Sandy Arnold, Certified Lactation Consultant and Dr. Alisha Davis lead the session, as new and expectant moms asked a series of questions regarding breastfeeding. I decided to share these questions with you all, in hopes that any mommas considering breastfeeding ,or who are breastfeeding ,may gain a little insight!


“Ask the Experts Session: Lactation Care & First Year Needs for Baby and Mom” 

What kind of lactation problems can you experience?

Sore nipples

Latching issues

Tongue ties

Low milk supply

Side preference- which can result in decreased milk supply and sore nipples

Is it common to have issues with the rooting reflex?

If there is any misalignment in the cervical vertebrae a baby can struggle to turn their head properly  and there maybe issues with the rooting reflex.

Breastfeeding pillow, helpful?

Yes! My Brest-friend is the most helpful because it gets closer and  snugger to the body! Often times little babies can get lost in the Boppy pillow. The Boppy is great for when the baby gets older and bigger. 

Is there a difference when you introduce solids and a latch?

Oh yea, sometimes babies will hold their tongue back when eating from a spoon. So they will do the same while breast feeding. Therefore struggling to latch properly. Just continue to breast feed and this problem should work itself out.

Is there anything you can do during pregnancy to help milk supply?

Not during pregnancy, no.

Foods to produce milk flow?

You don’t have to change your diet. You want to make sure you are eating and drinking. Oatmeal, granola bars, Kind bars, the “Pink Drink” at Starbucks. Drink half of your body weight in any liquid, water, juice, tea.

After birth suggestions.

At the hospital get all the lactation help you can get. Make sure the latch is right and the baby is gaining weight. Get your rest. STAY OFF GOOGLE (that is my personal advice)

Should you pump at the hospital?

If there are serious issues, yes. But what is more helpful is hand expression. The lactation consultant at the hospital can help teach you how. Most times they will encourage you to continue trying to nurse while at the hospital. Only add pumping if the baby is not nursing well.

Best Breastpump?

Madela Pump In Style (this is the pump that I use)

Spectra S1 and S2, these pumps are hospital grade, and they have a ton of positive reviews from mommas.

First year needs for baby and mom?

Make sure that mom is taking care of herself. A lot of moms forget to take care of herself because she is so focused on baby. Make sure that she is eating and staying hydrated, this is so important to maintain milk supply.

Make sure baby is hitting all of the proper milestones. Don’t sit in the house every day, get out. Postpartum anxiety can become worsened if you isolate yourself from others. Make new friends, find a mom tribe. Fit4Mom is a great way to get out of the house, and connect with other moms.


I know that there are a ton more questions that you may have, so feel free to let me know in the comment section, and I will try my best get you an answer!

Make sure to check out Raleigh Moms Blog website, and give them a follow on Instagram and Facebook

Check out Raleigh Moms Blog, click picture for link to website

4 Homemade, Organic Baby Food Recipes to Start Your Baby Eating Right

When my daughter turned five months old, she started showing an interest in food other then breast milk. So we called up the pediatrician to discuss when the right time to introduce food was. Her doctor told us to start out feeding her rice cereal and then slowly start incorporating fruit and veggie purées. Now I don’t know why but the idea of feeding her food made me really excited! Made it’s because I knew that I was going to make her baby food myself. I have always enjoyed cooking, and making homemade baby food meant that I would save money, and I would know EXACTLY was in my daughters food. As soon as I got off the phone with the doctor I did a quick amazon search for baby food containers and came across the ones below. When I went to order, there was a tab that said “others are buying these together” and it was the baby food containers and a baby food cookbook. Which was perfect because I was already looking for an organic baby food cookbook. I am so glad I decided to order this cookbook because it is FULL of information not just recipes. And the recipes take your baby all the way to a year old and beyond. The cookbook is called “The Big Book of a Organic Baby Food” by Stephanie Middleberg MS, RN, CDN. I reached out to the author to ask if I had her permission to share a few of the recipes with you guys and she said YES. Also, I want to note that she was extremely nice to me and helpful! If you like the recipes I share I highly recommend purchasing her cookbook on Amazon and following her on Instagram!

Click image for link to purchase the cookbook

Also be sure to check out her nutrition page, for nutritional information for the whole family! http://middlebergnutrition.com/

The recipes that I am sharing with you are for infants age 6 months. Each recipe is gluten free, dairy free, nut free and vegan. I bought only organic items from my local Whole Foods. Stephanie Middleberg suggests that when you are shopping for fruits and veggies to eat with the seasons. She states that staying with in the seasons, fruits and veggies are at its peak flavor and most nutritious. Middleberg also suggests, and I agree with her, to try and shop from local foods, so that you can support small family farms. This will also mean you will get produce that is raised with minimal pesticides. In her book, there is an awesome graphic, where she lists each season and the produce that is in season at that time!

Grocery List

  • Freeze bags (quarter or gallon)
  • Sweet Potato, Yams or Potatoes ( about 3)
  • Bananas (about 3)
  • Summer Squash (about 3 small, or 1 Large)
  • 2 cups berries (hulled if necessary)
  • Herbs and spices ( optional)
  • Blender or Food Processor

Sweet Potato Puree

Makes 15- (1-Ounce) Freezer Tray Cubes

  • 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, yams, or potatoes (about 3), peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • Herbs AND Spices: Sweet potatoes work well with- thyme, ground cumin, ginger and cinnamon.
  1. In a medium saucepan with a steamer insert, bring about 1 inch of water to a simmer. Add the potatoes. Cover and steam until tender, about 10 minutes.
  2. Transfer the potatoes to a blender or food processor, along with a pinch of an herb or spice, if using. Puree until smooth. Adjust the texture by adding a little breast milk or formula, or water to achieve desired consistency.

Storage : Fill a freezer cube tray with 1-ounce portions. Freeze overnight . Store the frozen cubes in a tightly sealed zip-top bag for up to 6 months.

Banana Puree

Makes 15 (1-ounce) freezer tray cubes
  • 1 1/2 pounds bananas (about 3 bananas), peeled
  • Herbs AND Spices: Bananas are delicious with ground nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, or ginger.

Storage : Fill a freezer cube tray with 1-ounce portions. Freeze overnight . Store the frozen cubes in a tightly sealed zip-top bag for up to 6 months.

In a blender or food processor, combine the bananas and a pinch of spice, if using. Puree until smooth. Adjust the texture by adding a little breast milk, formula, or water to achieve the desired consistency.

Summer Squash Puree

Makes 15 (1-ounce) Freezer Tray Cubes

  • 1 1/2 pound summer squash ( about 3 small, 1 1/2 medium, or 1 large summer squash), peeled and cut into 1/4- inch dice
  • Herbs AND Spices: Season with garlic, tarragon and rosemary

Storage : Fill a freezer cube tray with 1-ounce portions. Freeze overnight . Store the frozen cubes in a tightly sealed zip-top bag for up to 6 months.

  1. In a medium saucepan with steamer insert, bring about 1-inch of water to a simmer. Add the squash. Cover and steam until tender, about 10 minutes.
  2. Transfer the steamed squash to a blender or food processor, along with a pinch of an herb, if using. Puree until smooth. Adjust the texture by adding a little breast milk, formula, or water to achieve the desired consistency.

Berry Puree

Makes 15 (1-ounce) Freezer Tray Cubes

  • 1 1/2 pounds berries (about 2 cups), hulled if necessary (strawberries need hulled) and cut into pieces if fruit is larger than 3/4 inch.
  • Herbs AND Spices: Try savory herbs like thyme or rosemary, or spices such as cinnamon , ginger or allspice.

Storage : Fill a freezer cube tray with 1-ounce portions. Freeze overnight . Store the frozen cubes in a tightly sealed zip-top bag for up to 6 months.

  1. If using blueberries, in a medium saucepan with steamer insert, bring about 1 inch of water to a simmer. (If using any other type of berry move to step 2) Add the blueberries. Cover and steam for 5 minutes.
  2. Transfer the berries to a blender or food processor, along with a pinch of an herb or spice, if using. Puree until smooth. Adjust the texture by adding a little breast milk, formula, or water to achieve the desired consistency.

HOW TO HULL A STRAWBERRY- The quickest way to hull a strawberry is to grasp just under the stem and use your ail to scoop out the hull as you remove the stem.

I hope that your little one enjoys these recipes as much as mine! Remember to have fun when creating new food combinations. Keep an eye out for Stage 2 recipes, Smooth Combination Purees.

16 Pieces from Carters to get your baby girl ready for Spring!

Spring is finally here! It’s the time for Easter Egg hunts, family gatherings, flowers blossoming, sun shining and rain falling. During Spring, I like to update my wardrobe, I pack away my winter clothes and start collecting Spring (and sometimes Summer) pieces. So of course with my little girl, I would do the same. I have gathered my favorite pieces from Carters into a Spring Baby Girl Outfit Guide!

Click images for link to items

I am LOVING the mix of pastel and bright colors that these Spring pieces bring. Of course I could not pass up the FLORALS, they just scream SPRING to me.

(❤ shows items Ellie currently owns)

(💕 shows my TOP PICK pieces)

DRESSES

Striped Shirt Dress ❤
Embroidered Eyelet Dress
Floral Poplin Dress💕
Floral Ruffle Dress

I love how versatile these outfits are, they are also great transition pieces into summer as well! I can not get enough of the patterns on these outfits, especially that toucan shirt, HOW CUTE!

Outfit Sets

2-Piece Crinkle Jersey Top & Tumbling Set
3-Piece Floral Little Short Set
2-Piece Certified Organic Floral Top & Short
3-Piece Chambray Short Set 💕
2-Piece Tropical Toucan Tank & Twill Short Set

If you live in a warmer climate, Spring may also mean the start of pool season. It can get pretty hot in May in Raleigh, so of course I had to include some adorable swimsuits. Ellie has the flamingo one piece, but now I want the swan one too! (Let me be honest, I want all the pieces on this list)

Swimsuits

Flamingo One-Piece Swimsuit ❤
One-Piece Swan Swimsuit
Two-Piece Swimsuit & Cover Up ❤
One-Piece Floral Rashguard 💕

Anyone else’s heart explode when they see little baby shoes? No outfit is complete without a cute pair of shoes, so naturally I had to add some sandals to this list! Those Espadrille sandals are very on trend this season!

Sandals

Chambray Cork Sandals
Strappy Sandals
Espadrille Sandals 💕

Leave a comment below and let me know YOUR favorite pieces from the list! And if you want to see more style guides like this!

5 Easy Ways to Introduce Peanut Foods to Your Infant 🥜

This post was originally written by Tarametblog, I have been given permission to share with my readers.

We recently started introducing rice cereal into our babies diet. My blogger friend, Tara, mentioned to me a couple of weeks ago that she attended an event where they discussed new research. This research shows that parents should start introducing peanuts into an infants diet as early as 6 months of age. I’ll be honest I was a little bit skeptical, so I called my daughters pediatrician, and she CONFIRMED this new research.

So I want to share a blog post from @tarametblog at “When Tara Met Blog”

5 Ways to Introduce Peanut Foods to Infants

To My Postpartum Body

A love letter to my postpartum body:

There are so many things that I want to say to you. I want to say Thank You, I’m Sorry and I love you. I watched you preform the most magical act I have ever seen. You transformed into a strong cocoon, blossomed and released a beautiful butterfly, made from your own flesh. And for that I am forever grateful.

So I say Thank You. Thank you for bringing heaven to earth, in the form a sweet little angel named Elliott Grace. I used to believe that miracles rarely ever happened, and that I would never experience one of my own. And then I watched a miracle unfold right before my eyes. It was not always easy, and some days I wished it all was over, but I would never trade this precious gift for anything in the world.

I’m sorry, I am sorry for wasting so much time wishing you looked different. I am sorry for all of the horrible things I said about you, while you were transforming in order to grow my baby girl. I am sorry for not appreciating you more. When I look at you, I see a beautiful road map, with evidence of the amazing journeys you have gone on. Stretching and moving, changing to fit my little angel.

I love you. Even with all of the “flaws” , I love you. You have amazed me for months now. You have done some of the most incredible acts and you took it all in strides. You have shown me just how strong you are, and how strong I am. You have given me grace in my times of change. When I felt like I couldn’t go on, you proved to me that I can. You stood firm and protected me from not one, but two falls. I never appreciated you as much as I do now. I promise to take better care of you, and allow you the grace you have shown me. You will never be the same way you were before this amazing journey, but I am so grateful for you now.

When I run my fingers over you, I can feel every mark, every stretch and it takes me back to those first days. The first time I felt that little bump. The first time I heard my little girls racing heartbeat. The first time I felt my baby move inside of me. You are my constant reminder of where you have been, and while these marks may fade, my memory of your selflessness will not.

To my postpartum body,

Thank you, I am Sorry, I love you 💕