Here’s my biannual blog post! Will gladly accept the award for World’s Okayest Blogger this year. All jokes aside, 2020 has been a DOOZY. Since everyone is spending more (& more & more..) time at home these days, I figured now was a great time to share some of the activities and items that have kept us busy, sane and somewhat entertained in case any of you need some new ideas (far from an expert!). I broke the categories up by my two kids’ age groups and whether the activities were more educational versus purely play. If you have any favorites, be sure to let me know!
“Why’d you choose a lemon theme?” is a question I’ve been asked over and over. It’s a vision I’ve had for a long time, something out of the “norm,” and a super fun concept to work with and curate items for! Gotta love a good challenge, right? I knew I wanted a lemon themed first birthday party, cutely coined “Evan’s Lemons,” before she was even born. I originally wanted a lemon themed nursery, but didn’t really feel like that could grow or transition into a “big girl room” down the road. So, birthday party won! Anytime I saw something that fit the theme during Evan’s first year of life, I hoarded it away in my closet until the big day arrived. You can imagine how my closet evolved over the year..
Ahh.. the happiest place on Earth. It’s pretty ironic that they call it that when it can feel totally overwhelming and stressful.. even from the beginning stages of planning your trip. I’m here to help. I’ve always lived in Florida & traveling to Disney has been a part of my life since my early childhood. Now that I have a couple trips with children under my belt, I wanted to share my experience and tips to help anyone in the midst of planning their own trip.
This post is sponsored by FAGE; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own and I only work with brands that I truly love.
If you looked up “crazed mother of two” in the dictionary, you’d most likely see a photo of me with a messy bun, pump on, & obviously a portable snack in my hand because obviously I’m always hungry. Since I started exclusively pumping, the relentless hunger has returned with a vengeance and I love spending time in the kitchen (when time allows) prepping little snacks & meals ahead of time so that I won’t be reaching for something processed and full of less than ideal ingredients when I’m chasing a toddler with a baby on my hip. After all, I’m truly eating for two! I love sharing my meal & snack ideas with all of you, because it’s often the community I’ve found on Instagram that I, myself, find helpful ideas & tips. Below are some of my favorite healthy snacks that you can throw together in a pinch and are easily eaten on the go with your family.
Relactation.. did you know that’s actually a thing? I wouldn’t have known that it was really physically possible for your body to produce breastmilk (and ENOUGH milk) after being completely dry or never even pregnant if I hadn’t been in the right place at the right time. A couple of years ago, at a “mom’s night out” dinner, I was sitting next to a very special mama to a baby born via surrogate who had been able to successfully give her child breastmilk.. and her dedication had always stuck with me in the back of my mind since that night.
Evan Rae Ginzler // December 10th, 2018 // 6 lbs. 14 oz. & 19 3/4 in
I had been dreaming about a VBAC for my second baby since Henry was born – literally Googled them incessantly while sitting on the couch with him as a fresh week old newborn. I felt so “robbed” of my dream birth experience with him that I was determined to “make up for it” the next time around (that feels so silly now!). I even switched OBs to a VBAC-friendly practice but when I asked him about my chances of a future VBAC, his response was, “your stars would really need to align.” When I got pregnant with Evan, I suddenly didn’t care how it went down and scheduled a c-section for December 20th (my due date was December 23rd) but kept the VBAC option open in my mind just in case. I liked that the c-section was planned and that I could arrange for Henry to be with my in-laws and do it around my husband’s patient load/the holidays (EYE ROLL). At the same time, I wanted to experience a more natural birth so I figured I’d let fate handle it & just leave my options open to whatever might come.
It took me a LONG time to learn how to style my own hair – about 30ish years to be exact! Luckily, after lots and lots of focus and practice, I’ve finally been able to nail down what works for me & my hair type. I’ve been growing my hair out for two years now and really only get it trimmed every few months – and I only wash it once or twice a week (depending on what’s on the schedule that week). I have some layers in my hair, but really nothing fancy when it comes to the cut/style.
I am totally guilty, like every other first time mom, of overpacking my hospital bag when I went in to deliver Henry. Some lessons we just need to learn for ourselves the hard way.. ya know? I read the countless blog posts, Pinterest infographics & app articles about what to bring, but for some reason thought I’d have way more time on my hands and be in the right frame of mind in the hospital to do leisurely activities like read a novel and accomplish work on my laptop (I’m LOL’ing at myself!). So, with some seasoned experience, I have just packed my bag for round TWO and am here to share what you actually need when you’re finally ready to meet your baby!
I get asked this question A LOT. More than a lot, really. When I post a food snap to my Instagram stories, I always, without fail, get asked how I make it happen when I have a wild toddler at home. I’ll be the first to tell you that it’s not always easy (Henry doesn’t always cooperate aka allow me to cook without crying at my feet, 🙄) and I definitely don’t cook every night, but cooking is a passion of mine, and the reward is always worth it. So, today I’m sharing some of my tips AND some of my foodie bestie, Dani’s, tips on how we get dinner on the table with kids in the house. Dani has TWO kiddos, a two year old boy (Henry’s partner in crime) and the cutest baby girl.
This is one of the most common questions that I get and I receive so much positive feedback when I post Henry’s meals & snacks on my Instagram. I’ve always loved being in the kitchen and whipping up stuff for Henry was something I always dreamed of even before he was born. While I do try to make most of his meals, his snacks are a mix of homemade and healthy pre-made items. AND, to clarify, I say “OUR” favorite toddler snacks because these are snacks that Henry likes and snacks that I like and feel good about giving him. So, here’s a list of some of our favorites in hopes that it gives you a few ideas for your own little ones (or for yourself, no judgement here):
This is, by FAR, one of my favorite trends ever! I love a good high waisted skirt paired with a crop, a tucked in tank or loose blouse, and of course – a bodysuit. This look can be so flattering, I even rocked a high-waisted pencil style skirt when I was almost 30 weeks pregnant with Henry! I knew I had to find the perfect skirt for the holiday season and was beyond thrilled when I saw this one at Nordstrom (& it’s ON SALE for $23!). This particular floral skirt would look so cute with a tank, black leather jacket and booties (hello, side slit!).
‘Tis the season for all things RED! While I’m not usually the one to rock a bold fire engine lip mid-spring, I do LOOOVE a good berry-hued lip in the winter months. Especially around the holidays! I think a red lip is one of the best accessories to a holiday outfit, whether you’re attending your office holiday party, a festive family meal, or the New Years Eve bash of the century. I’ve put together a round-up of some of my all time tried & true favorites.
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As it’s pretty apparent by now, food is a huge passion of mine. Making it, studying it, planning it and of course, eating it are all some of my favorite pastimes. I couldn’t wait to move into our new home mostly just so I could finally entertain. Nothing gets me going quite like planning a food-centered event. And not to pat my own back, but I think I’m pretty good at it. So when one of my nearest & dearest mama friends, Daniela, approached me about opening a “side hustle” food & entertaining business, I thought it was the best idea I’d ever heard.