Spring Things

toddler on slide

"Where flowers bloom, so does hope." - Lady Bird Johnson

Cheesy, yes... the inspiration we all need right now, also yes. Hello, it's me, and it's been a while!  It was a busy and somehow not-so-busy winter. We were home, well Ethan was at school (thankfully and safely), but we pretty much hunkered down over the winter to get to where we are now. The weather has turned; it's mostly sunny and warmer days now.  And, we have a toddler boy. He is a busy(!) and LOVES being outside, from running around in the backyard, to visiting our neighbors' chickens, to going on walks... it's been a lot of fun to see Ethan transition from a baby to a toddler the last several months. He is talking so much with many new words and short sentences each day. He is making his opinions known too, for better or worse! Oh toddler meltdowns, those are fun. 🙃

But mostly, I am feeling really hopeful. Hubby and I will be fully vaccinated by the end of the month, as will most of our family members + close friends/quarantine team. My bro, sis in law & nephew and dad + stepmom will be coming up to Mass. for the summer. It's been 6+ months since we have all been together! I can't wait for lots of hugs.

A few things that we have been loving lately:

  • I got these toddler letter hats for Ethan + my nephew and can't wait to see them wear them together!
  • I've become obsessed with these headbands that actually don't hurt my head when wearing all day.
  • Ethan is all about Daniel Tiger these days! (which is a nice change of pace from Mother Goose Club for the last year, haha)
  • I purchased a few new makeup and skincare products for the changing of the seasons, and this tinted face serum and this toner spray are what I am using daily.
  • I am into matching pajamas and got this set for the summer. 🌈

Looking forward to a fun + safe summer with this guy. 💛
toddler running outside

Pics by me. 


Holiday Magic, "It's Just One Year", and 2020 Winding Down

Toddler decorating Christmas tree

The last 2 years I have been talking about the holidays in this way, thinking of the magic and special memories to come:

  • 2018 when pregnant with Ethan: "Can you believe next year we will have a 7 month old?! I can't wait, it's going to be so special"
  • 2019 Ethan as a 7 month old: "Can you believe next year he will be 1.5 years old?! He will probably jump on the Christmas tree...and rip open all his presents and then just play with the box!"
  • And when referring to my nephew, "The cousins are going to be so cute! It's going to be so fun to see them together!"

Well now it's 2020 and we have a 19 month old, who actually hasn't toppled the tree (haha), but has provided holiday joy in ways that are needed even more this year. We decorated the house with a Christmas tree and various lights in the living room. Every night he comes home from school and goes around the room, asking for all the lights to go on and clapping. He loves snuggling a Grinch stuffed animal (that was mine as a kid), putting on a Santa hat, and laughing at The Mensch on a Bench.

Hanna Andersson toddler Santa hat

In addition to talking about next year's holiday season, and how Ethan will be 2.5 years old (!!), I am also saying, "I can't wait for us all to be back together" and "it's just one year."*  It's just one year that I won't see my brother, sister in law and nephew; my dad and stepmom; and my extended family. And while it is just one year, it doesn't negate that this sucks. Zoom and FaceTime are bridging the gap and there is some comfort knowing that this is not unique to us, people around the world are experiencing different holidays this year and missing family members.  So we are making the best of things and are lucky that we have our safe quaranteam/pod with some of our family and a friend nearby.  

Despite it all, I'm feeling optimistic heading into to the new year. I don't expect the virus to disappear when we ring in 2021, but with the vaccine roll out and Biden taking office, I believe in the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. One of my go-to resources for good info, not only on the virus but on parenthood, is Emily Oster.  She had this in her recent newsletter and on her Instagram:

So I am hanging on to that optimism, taking in the holiday magic, and focusing on the good things that 2020 brought such as a new job closer to home and a thriving toddler who we are spending more time with given being home more (versus if he was in school the entire year), and art from school like the below :)

homemade ornament kids craft

Happy Holidays and New Year! 


Pics by me.


Holiday Decorations Wishlist

matching christmas family pajamas

It's 2 months until Christmas and some of my favorite brands have started sharing their holiday lines. Usually, I am on the "it's too soon!" bandwagon, but this year, I am ready for all things holiday to decorate our house for Christmas... the earlier the better the earliest my hubby will let me decorate, the better! 🤣

Two years ago we bought a fake Christmas tree, and while I love the activity of buying a real tree and the smell, it was the best decision. Having a small baby last year, and now with a toddler this year, not having to deal with the tree needles everywhere is so nice. Plus, this candle creates the perfect, nostalgic fresh tree smell all through the house! (I am thinking this year it will be fun to get small tree just for Ethan, that will be easy and not too much upkeep.)

Considering we are probably going to be spending more time at home this winter, here is what is on my wishlist for holiday decorations this year to get in the Christmas spirit:

What holiday decor are you buying this year? Would love to see in the comments!

Pic by me, December 2019.


Ethan's Favorite Baby Toys 0-12 months

Best Baby Toys 0-12 Months
Ethan turned 15 months old on July 29th! I am sharing his favorite baby toys during the first year. Check out more the best baby toys and other first year baby essentials here and toddler (a growing list!) here.

Baby Einstein star: This is an OG toy used from the early days and he still likes listening to the music. 
Finger puppet book: We still read this every night. He loves when the elephant "moves". :)
Peek-a-boo bunny: He also still loves this toy; it has never ceased to make him giggle from the start!
Loveevery play gym: This was a favorite resting place for many months. It's great quality. 
Sofie the Giraffe: He loved chewing on this so much we bought 2!

Photo by me, created in Canva.


Recent Beauty Loves

It has been a while since I have written one of these posts! Since the quarantine began this spring, I have been trying to use up some of my beauty products, like masks, creams, etc. I've also purchased a few new products, a mix of high and low. Let's get to it!

1. Flamingo shaving gel: Got this at Target and LOVE it. My legs felt sooo smooth. Once I run out of Venus razors, I am going to try their razors.

2. SEEN shampoo & conditioner: I have suffered from face and back breakouts on + off forever so when I saw this on a blog, I thought I'd give it a shot. It's a haircare line developed by dermatologists that won't clog pores or cause breakouts. I have definitely seen (no pun intended) a difference since using this and when I don't.

3. St. Tropez Bronzing Water Face Mist: Fake tan tends to not look good on me since I am so fair. At Sephora last fall, this was recommended to me and it's great. The smell is light and nice, it's refreshing for the face, and just gives me a nice glow.  Repurchased!

4. Supergoop! Glowscreen: Speaking of glow, I bought the Suprergoop! Glowscreen at the beginning of quarantine after getting a sample and finally using it. It was perfect timing as I was so not wanting to put on actual makeup anymore and it's another love!  My review of this product is that the glow is subtle and is perfect for everyday.  It's my go-to face makeup.

5. EcoBrow Defining Crayon: After trying many a brow pencils, wands, etc. this is my favorite by far. It's buildable in terms of how much color you want on your eyebrow hairs and has the built in comb on the other side. Plus, it's a clean product!

What are some of your favorite recent beauty purchases? 

Photo created by me in Canva. Trying it out!