Monday, April 23, 2012

Baby Favorites

I thought all you needed after having a baby was a handful of diapers and a car seat. Boy was I wrong. There are so many things you can buy for your baby, both absolutely necessary and not. Luckily for me, I had a handful of friends who had already taken the plunge and a mother who had given birth eight times to help me wade through the sea of baby gear. And some things I figured out on my own ;). Here are a few of the items that helped me make it through my first year of motherhood.

I cannot say enough about this bassinet. Nate and I knew we wanted to keep Maddux in our room for at least the first three months. I was nursing and wanted the convenience of not having to get out of bed every three hours throughout the night. But we also didn't necessarily want Maddux sleeping in between us every night. This co-sleeper turned out to be the perfect solution. It pulls up right by the bed and can be adjusted to the appropriate height. It can also be secured and attached to your bed so that the baby is safe. He gets his own space and we get our own space. 

Maddux ended up sleeping in our room for the first four months. It was such a great experience, and I have to admit that we were a little sad to see him go to his nursery.

Maddux loved this teether. It was seriously like catnip. And he's not the only one. Everywhere I go where babies are around, I see Sophie peeking out of diaper bags, lounging in strollers or sticking out of the mouths of drooling six month olds. 

Sadly, I have not seen Sophie around our home lately. We think she may have jumped out of the car somewhere around Santa Monica when we were there on vacation a few months ago. Hopefully she is lounging on a California beach, soaking up some rays.

Since we do a lot of traveling, this booster seat has been perfect. It's lightweight, easy to use and most importantly, super easy to clean.  Since there is no fabric, a quick wipe down is all you need. Or for a bigger mess, you can throw the detachable tray in the dishwasher. You can strap Baby in, and there are also straps to secure the seat to any chair. When we're in a hotel room or at a friend or family member's house, it's great to have a safe place to put Maddux, where he can sit and eat a meal or a snack. Plus, you really can't go wrong with the price tag.

I'm pretty much in love with anything Hanna Andersson. This Swedish inspired, Portland bred designer has everything from fun to functional, with all things pretty in between. These sleepers have been great. I love how they zip straight up the middle. Who wants to try and snap a zillion snaps on a squirming baby at two in the morning? Sadly, Maddux has recently outgrown his sleepers. I think I'll have to stock up here on our trip up North next week!

Baby Bjorn Classic Carrier

Ah, the Bjorn. I absolutely loved mine. Within a few days of his birth, we had Maddux strapped into his for walks around the neighborhood. At first, he was so tiny his head was completely hidden. It was fun to measure how much he had grown by how much his head popped out from the top of his Bjorn. As he got older, I turned him around so he could see the world as it passed by. And he loved it! He would kick his chubby little legs and start giggling like crazy. I also really loved keeping him close. It seemed so much more personal than keeping him in a stroller all the time. And it traveled well, which was perfect for us. Maddux saw so much of the country in that Bjorn: from the Atlantic Ocean all the way to the Pacific Ocean. I'm sad that he's outgrown it.

Skip Hop Travel Changing Kit

This travel kit has been great for quick, on-the-road changes. Being so lightweight, I can carry it like a wristlet instead of hauling a giant diaper bag around. I think Nate likes it, too because it is a bit more masculine than carrying around a bag.

What are some baby items that you could not live without?

Crave: Summer Dresses

(See by ChloƩ)


 This is actually a pregnancy line, but I think it could be worn as shown even if you're not expecting, or showing much.

And the Fairchild dress from Steven Alan's 2011 collection is now at a drastically reduced price . Still adorable.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Etsy Find: For Such A Time Designs

As the daughter of an avid antique hunter and collector, I grew up surrounded by other people's things. I remember going to estate sales and thrift stores as a child, and running my fingers over the lace fabric of a gown, wondering who had worn it. Did they have it on when they had their first kiss, or when they had their heart broken for the first time? I loved imagining up stories for the former owners. I was also drawn to the old serving dishes and tarnished silver, wondering how many Thanksgiving meals they had been used for.

It is for this reason that I love Aly Nickerson's repurposed flatware. She peruses flea markets and sales and finds gorgeous old forks, spoons, knives and the like, then hand-stamps them. Her designs run the gamut from whimsical ("Make A Wish") to funny ("Coffee Is My Drug") to sweet ("You Are Loved").

She also does custom projects, so I am thinking of ordering a flatware set for Maddux with his initials. 

So sweet and simple.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Vacation Planning

San Juan Island
(Image via Travel and Leisure)

Nate and I are planning a trip to Washington State this summer and will be visiting Seattle for the first time. We are super excited to catch up with friends and explore the city for a couple of days. 

While browsing vacation planning sites and blogs, a few things kept popping up on all of the "must-see" lists. Naturally, the Space Needle shows up, but there were also a few other places, like the Pike Place Market that I had never heard of. 

Nate and I like to go to "non-touristy" spots, so we will have to rely on our friend Matthew to give us the low-down on the local's hangouts. 

I would also love to sneak away to San Juan Island for a day. Doesn't it look amazing?!

And I'm sure we will have to work in a Space Needle photo op with little Maddux!

If you have any Seattle suggestions, let me know! I'd love to hear your favorite places.

The Space Needle

Pike Place Market
(Image via Belltowner)