Swaddle Designs * GIVEAWAY*

I have been preparing for baby #2 by making lists of items that I still need to purchase. Most of the bigger baby items I got when I was pregnant with Elin were gender neutral, but of course since I opted to find out her gender I went all girly with clothes, blankets, and all the fun baby accessories.

Since this one is a boy, there are some items that I am needing to stock up on. I am researching brands and companies again to refresh myself on what products are out there and which ones are tried and true. Of course there are some brands that I already know that I love and I know that I want to go with them when purchasing those particular baby items. In fact, I started an Amazon baby registry at the request of some friends and colleagues since I have a couple of baby sprinkles coming up. Some items that I added on there right away were SwaddleDesigns blankets and burp cloths. I had both of those items with Elin and loved them. In fact, their blankets were so pretty that they are in a lot of photos from her newborn photoshoot.

So, imagine my surprise and delight when SwaddleDesigns reached out to me with an offer to host a giveaway of their new soft single muslin blankets in their new prints.

Yes, please! Perfect timing!

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How sweet are the little pandas and hedgehogs? I am a fan of soft grays and silvers for boy stuff as opposed to a lot of blue, so I love that they offer a lot of soft gray options.

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I love using muslin blankets for swaddling since they are soft and breathable, especially in the spring and summer months. These are the only blankets I carried in my baby bag and I plan on that as well for baby #2. They are recommended by pediatricians and designed by an RN.

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Here are some pictures of the other items I have registered for and plan on purchasing from SwaddleDeisgns. I have used both the burp cloths and the receiving blankets with Elin.

SwaddleDesigns Ultimate Receiving Blanket, Mod Circles, Sterling

SwaddleDesigns Baby Burpies, Sterling Owls (Set of 2 Burp Cloths)

Now for the giveaway! SwaddleDesigns has very graciously given me a blanket for my readers to win. You are eligible to win one unopened gift box with the Hedgehog print muslin blanket by entering the giveaway below. The email will be emailed and will have a one week to respond to me with their mailing address.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Elin’s Valentine’s

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Last week was Elin’s Valentine’s Day party at school and I was in charge of the games. She was so excited when I came in the classroom early to set up. The assistant teacher was out that day, so when I got there I helped Elin and some of her classmates pass out their Valentines before the party started.

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Then it was time for the party. Coming up with fun ideas to entertain 3-4 year olds is not easy. After trying to think of creative ideas, I gave up and decided to purchase a Valentine-themed ring toss and bean bag game.

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I think all the kids liked the games and it was something I can use for the next couple of years for class parties.

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Then I just got a simple foam craft where the kids decorated little puppies. They all seemed to enjoy that as well.

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Then after a special snack I passed out conversation hearts and had them stack them to see who could make the highest stacks and then sort them by color.

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After the party, Elin was eager to check out all the Valentines she got from her classmates.

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I think she could get used to opening all these special treats from friends.

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Then here are some pictures of Elin opening her gifts from us on Valentine’s day.

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She loved her singing and dancing bunny, Disney Tsum Tsums, stickers, and Sweetarts.

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She was certainly spoiled but so worth it. She is our little Valentine!

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Blogger Valentine Exchange 2016

Valentine’s Day is almost upon us and I was so excited to participate in another blogger Valentine exchange.  Elin was thrilled as well.  She has been so eager to open up all the mail that has been coming her way and finally it was time for her to check out all the beautiful Valentines.

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All the Valentines were so creative and it looked like everyone spent a lot of time and effort to make their lovely creations.

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Elin was so excited she was literally shaking and smiling the whole time.

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Of course some of her favorites had edible items.

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After she opened all the Valentines, we chose to display them on some pink baker’s twine, then I used tiny white clothes pins to hang them.  It makes the playroom look so festive.

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Here is a closer look at all the creations.

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Here are the Valentines we sent to everyone and here is the post about how we made them.

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Here is a link to the Valentine exchange from last year.  These have been so much fun and a great way to get toddlers excited with mail.

Check out the posts from all the other fantastic bloggers in the exchange.

Tawnya, Scarlett, & Bodhi @ All of Life’s Little Adventures

Jennifer & Hattie @ And Hattie Makes Three

Ashley, Waverly, & Avalon @ Being Brickner

Jess & Abbie @ Being Mrs. Beer

Elizabeth & Mason @ Chasin’ Mason

Liz & Jude @ Ellie and Addie

Crystal & Mason @ Hall Around Texas

Desiree, Marcus, & Julia @ Macke Monologues

Natalie & Blair @ Nat Your Average Girl

Sara, Mac, & Mim @ Running From the Law

Jess, Cameron, & Louise @ Scott Family of Maine

Jessica, Cameron, & Emerson @ Secrets of a Stay at Home Mom

Sarah, Brantley, & Holden @ Seeing All Sides

Karli, Kaye, & Sawyer @ September Farm

Chrissy & Elin @ Simple Joys Blog

Courtney & Aria | Sweet Turtle Soup

Meghan & Noah @ The Adventure Starts Here

Stephanie & Connor | Wife Mommy Me

Whitney, Kinsey, & Brielana @ Work It Mommy

 

valentine swap

Declutter/Organization

At the beginning of the year I saw that many bloggers picked a word to represent the new year and what they wanted to focus on for the whole year. I didn’t take the time to think much about it, but so far the words I want to focus on this year are decluttering and organization.

My main issue is that I keep a lot of stuff because of sentimental value attributed to the item and I just have simply too much stuff. I always think that even if I don’t use it now, I will someday. We have an unfinished basement, so there is plenty of room to store items and it’s often times a lot easier to just keep an item. However, I want to change my own mindset and start purging items I don’t need. I think I truly want to be a minimalist.

I am so inspired to keep organizing and purging items that I am getting a slight obsession with it. I recently read the #1 New York Times Best Seller, “The life-changing magic of tidying up: The Japanese art of decluttering and organizing“.  This may sound like it would be a very boring book, but it was really interesting and had so many interesting stories and tips in there that really stuck with me as I have been working on 0n parting with  items and not holding on to unnecessary items. I highly recommend reading this book if you are trying to motivate yourself or keep yourself motivating in decluttering and organizing.

 

 

My obsession with organizing has also lead me to check out other bloggers and YouTubers who specialize in organization. These are some of my favorites:

I Heart Organizing

Pretty Neat Living

At Home with Nikki

A Bowl Full of Lemons

Let me know if there are others that you recommend.

Since I love seeing how others organize, I will start taking pictures as I go along. I wish I would have done that as I have been organizing for the past couple of weeks.

Here are some products I have recently bought to aid in organizing that I am really excited about. Now, if you follow the rules from the Marie Kondo book above, she discourages from spending money on fancy organization items and baskets. When people buy organizers, they tend to keep items because they “fit” as opposed to getting rid of the items. I can see that logic, but at the same time organizers just help aid in the look and functionality of the items you do keep.

 

 

This spinning lipstick tower is from The Original Beauty Box and I just received mine in the mail. I ordered white to match my makeup area. I can’t wait to go through all my makeup (hopefully getting rid of lots of old items) and organizing it into this compact system. It holds 72 lipsticks and 16 compacts and it spins which is fun.

Large Woven Rectangular Storage Basket - Grey and White - Room Essentials™

This basket from Target is light weight and affordable. It’s only $12.99 and I have bought four recently. I used two in my linen closet organization to put linens in because I cannot make sheets look pretty folded and I can’t stand how they look on the shelves, so I thought a basket to keep them in just looked better. Then I also currently have two in the trunk of my SUV. I use one to hold items I am taking with me to return, or when I buy items I put the bags in there so they are not rolling around in my trunk. The other one has a spare blanket and other items in case of an emergency.

I would love to hear how you stay organized and if you have any great tips!

What does Elin think of me?

I saw this really fun survey to ask your kids to record the funny things that will come to their mind. I thought it would be a great way to remember what Elin thought of me at 3.5 years old. I plan to try to remember to ask her these questions again in a year and see how her answers change!

 

1. What is something mom always says to you? Pink Doggie!

2. What makes mom happy? Legos

3. What makes mom sad? Crying

4. How does your mom make you laugh? My slinky (we had just found one in her toy bin a few minutes earlier.)

5. What was your mom like as a child?  A baby

6. How old is your mom? (She asked Phil until he gave her the correct answer)  32

7. How tall is your mom? (She asked Phil again and she guessed 5’5)

8. What is her favorite thing to do? Play with me

9. What does your mom do when you’re not around? Go to work

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? For toys

11. What is your mom really good at? Shows (I’m guessing she means watching shows)

12. What is your mom not very good at?  Listening to me (this one made me sad! I always listen to her! I guess I’m too busy watching shows…..)

13. What does your mom do for a job? Painting

14.What is your mom’s favorite food? Green Beans

15.What makes you proud of your mom? Babies (Not sure if she means when I buy stuffed animals for her or when I play with them with her. She refused to elaborate.)

16. If your mom were a character, who would she be?  Mickey Mouse!

17. What do you and your mom do together? Read stories

18. How are you and your mom alike? We both like to play with the Calico Critter house

19. How are you and your mom different? She would not answer this one.  She was distracted and getting tired from the questioning.

20. How do you know your mom loves you? Kisses

21. What does your mom like most about your dad? Kisses

22. Where is your mom’s favorite place to go? Grocery Store  (she is soooooo wrong on this!)

23. How old was your Mom when you were born?: 4