Monday, August 31, 2020

Motherhood Monday: Mia's Schedule at 18 Months

Baby schedule at 18 months

When this girl turn into a full-on toddler?!? I realized I haven't shared her schedule in a while, so I wanted to share before we start our preschool pod next week. (Yes, we are in a preschool pod. Words I never thought I'd hear myself say! Just with a couple of other toddlers we know and whose parents we trust. You can read about why we stopped going to daycare here.) 

7am: Wake up and start the day! I'm in charge in the mornings, which is very handy for outfit selections. We head upstairs, immediately chug a sippy cup of water, and usually start our day with a few books.

8am: Breakfast! Mia really does eat as much as you may have seen in my Instagram stories, usually two kinds of fruit, eggs, toast with cheese, maybe some more fruit if she cleans her plate, and Cheerios. 

8:30am: We usually head out for a long walk or to the park to burn off some energy as long as the weather is nice. Then we'll come home and generally destroy the living room until its time for lunch. No morning snacks here since breakfast and lunch are 3 hours apart. 

11am: Lunch time! Jeff is usually in charge of lunch, but we aim for one fruit, one vegetable, and a peanut butter sandwich or leftovers from the night before. 

11:30am: Additional living room destruction and wind down to nap time. 

12:30-ish pm: Nap time! We are currently trying to push her nap back a little to get ready for the pod. Some days Mia naps for 2+ hours, but usually she wakes up screaming at the 45 minute mark and won't fall back asleep. 

1:15pm: We watch an episode of Sesame Street or read books to try to calm down from the screaming end of naptime. 

2pm: Snack! Mia usually eats some crackers, cheese, and maybe a little more fruit. Snacks are usually pretty small, she just isn't very interested. 

3pm: More outdoor time - we head up to our roof deck or go for another walk. 

5pm: Dinner! We try to mix things up but Mia usually ends up with a vegetable, sweet potatoes or another side, and pasta with meat and cheese in it. She often gets our leftovers here too. 

5:30pm: We usually FaceTime with a grandparent, run around the living room screaming, and climb on furniture when we hit the toddler witching hour. If it's been a long day, we might do a little more screen time. 

6:15pm: If it's a bath night we head on in to bubble up. Mia has really sensitive skin so we try to only do baths 2x a week. 

6:45pm: We head downstairs to brush teeth, get in pajamas, read two books, and go to sleep! 

So basically it's two five-hour awake windows, with a meal or snack every three hours. We try not to let Mia snack in-between meals so she'll be hungry for those vegetables. 

Toddler schedule at 18 months

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Friday, August 21, 2020

Friday Finds

Happy Friday again!! Don't these things just seem to roll around every week? We don't have a ton of plans this week, but do have a reservation for the zoo on Sunday which should be fun. Otherwise it's just going to be us, our toddler, and a mini blow up pool on the roof :) 

Here are my finds for the week. Full fall shopping mode over here, anyone else??

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Wednesday, August 19, 2020

The Dog Days

Top - J.Crew / Shorts - LOFT / Sandals - Target / Bag - Madewell / Earrings (similar) - a gift! / Sunglasses - Amazon

I feel like I really have to wonder here how we got to the second half of August. I really apologize for saying it, because could I be more cliché? But I really don't know how we got here. I think the summer has been flying by specifically because I'm nervous about having a toddler stuck in my house for a COVID Chicago winter. We've been soaking up as much sunshine and outdoor time as we can, and it's so nice to have a space on our roof for a kiddie pool and water table and sun loungers. We spent all of Saturday afternoon up there splashing around, but before that, Jeff and I got dressed up and went on a little day date! 

A date?! I know. I was so excited, it had been months and months. Jeff's brother and SIL came over to watch Mia for a couple of hours, and we got to have a kid-free brunch! I had a couple of mimosas (one of which had to be replaced after a wasp dive bombed it), and we got to eat fresh french fries, and no kid repeatedly threw things on the ground! We've been going to River Valley for the couple of meals we've eaten out because it seems like the safest option in our neighborhood. They have plexiglass up to block the patio from the sidewalk, the tables are really well spaced, they require mask-wearing except when you're actually eating, and they are using disposable silverware and plates. 

I wore my favorite tank of the summer (I have it in black too!) along with these cute pull-on shorts. This tank is so fun, the little ruffle makes me feel so cute every time I put it on. I'm so used to wearing less fitted tops that having a really fitted tank is a fun change, and it works really well with a pull-on short. A flowy top wouldn't work with these shorts, it would end up feeling sloppy. For these shorts, I'd suggest sizing down one size as they run a little big. If you're in the market for something cute to wear with shorts or skirts, it's currently on an amazing sale (price depends on the color).

Hope you have a good one! 

summer shorts, bag, sandals

summer outfit idea - ruffle tank and pull on shorts

easy summer mom outfit idea

summer outfit with madewell transport tote

ruffled tank top and delicate earrings for summer

cute ruffle tank top

what to wear for a summer day date

striped pull-on shorts - easy mom summer style

what to wear with the madewell transport tote - summer mom style

Top - J.Crew / Shorts - LOFT / Sandals - Target / Bag - Madewell / Earrings (similar) - a gift! / Sunglasses - Amazon

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Monday, August 17, 2020

Motherhood Monday: Mia's Fall Wardrobe

Last year, as a new, naive mommy, I waited until September to try to buy Mia clothes for the fall, and it turns out I was too late. Back to school shopping is apparently a thing (who knew?!) even for babies because they've all grown out of their warm clothes, and the experienced mommies swoop up all of the good styles early. It was kind of like when I decided Mia needed Christmas dresses but it was already December. Apparently it was a fool-me-twice situation. 

Anyway, I was not making the same late shopping error a third time, so this time I planned ahead. First I took a look through what Mia had still from this spring. She still had a few pairs 0f pants and hand-me-down sneakers, but all of her shirts and dresses wouldn't work. I went online to my favorite retailers for kids clothes (Old Navy, Gap, J.Crew Factory, J.Crew, and H&M) and pinned all of my favorites. (P.S. Are you following me on Pinterest?) Then I took a look at what I'd pinned and narrowed down anything that we didn't really need, made sure I wasn't buying too many of a category, etc. Then I waited for sales (H&M doesn't really have sales, FYI, and Old Navy has so many restrictions you can ignore their sales) and pounced! 

I'm pretty psyched about Mia's color palette for fall. We tried everything on last week and Mia seems into it too. And yes I bought her a bonnet, because there's a very short window of time when your child will consent to wearing a bonnet, and don't those little blonde curls look cute sticking out the bottom?! She's clearly thrilled about it.

Here's what we ended up getting (and BTW I apologize but somehow a couple of things, including the leopard dress and chambray headband, have already sold out. I told you the mommies are for real): 

Here are a few things from J.Crew Factory that I couldn't link above: navy quilted coat, leopard sweater, navy skirt, yellow skirt, pink ruffled cardigan, corduroy leggings, striped tee

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Friday, August 14, 2020

Friday Finds

Happy Friday!! Coming at you when it's already wine-o'clock because it's been a heck of a week! If you didn't see on Instagram, we had some crazy storms roll through Chicago on Monday afternoon that knocked out our internet for a few days. Honestly, I'm super thankful that's all that happened to us, because a lot of my neighbors fared a lot worse - an honest to goodness tornado went through Chicago about a mile and a half north of us! But anyway, since Jeff and I are both working from home (and the working from home thing doesn't work so well without an internet connection) we spent the week shuffling between our parents' houses. It was pretty stressful to start since our already reduced working hours were cut even further, but ended up being really fun getting in all of that extra family time. 

Anyway, it's time for my finds for the week. And GASP, is that a SWEATER?!?!? J.Crew came out with their late summer/early fall collection, and y'all, it's perfection. I basically want everything. (Also, a southern coworker told me that "y'all" is no longer just for the south so I'm running with it.) 

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Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Why We Pulled Mia Out of Daycare

This whole pandemic thing - it's kind of crazy, huh?! If you have kids, what are you doing with them? Is it back to school or daycare or camp as usual, or are you keeping them home?

Just wanted to start out by saying that this is a judgement-free zone. No judgements here in what you've decided in terms of your own childcare or school choices, I just wanted to share our story.

Omgggg this photo is from March and how freaking cute is that squish?!?!! 

I had in my brain that Mia was going to be a daycare kid until she went to kindergarten. And then two weeks ago, we decided to officially pull her out of school.

Our daycare closed on March 13th, and initially I was shocked. At the time there were less than a hundred cases of COVID-19 being reported every day, and the general consensus was that COVID wasn't affecting kids. Some of my coworkers in California had their daycares close the week before, and I really didn't think it would happen to us.

Having Mia at home at first was hard. If you have kids, you know. If you don't have kids, you've seen the memes. I had wanted to figure out how to spend more time with Mia, but trying to work full time while taking care of her wasn't quite what I had in mind.

It turns out though, we're lucky. Jeff and I both have bosses who are very understanding, and my company in particular has been very accommodating. March was impossible, April was hard, but now we've fallen into a rhythm of splitting our days and taking turns working and parenting.

My job has been amazing about scheduling "fun" meetings, this is the actress who played Angelica Schuyler in Hamilton doing a singalong! And yes this is what our kitchen usually looks like 🙈

Our daycare reopened in mid-June, and initially we said Mia would definitely be going back, but not for a couple of weeks. We were expecting cases to keep falling in Illinois, but instead since mid-June they've rebounded. The date was getting closer to when we thought we'd send Mia back, and suddenly cases in Illinois were worse than they had been since May.

Our daycare has 32 children plus 15+ staff members, which means sending her back to daycare, no matter how careful the staff are at cleaning and wearing masks, we have to trust that 32 other families are all social distancing and being as careful as we'd like them to be. We know some of the parents, but even in Mia's classroom of eight kids we haven't met all of them. It's a level of trust that I just didn't have, especially with case numbers continuing to increase.

Jeff and I sat down and talked everything through, and since we couldn't figure out when we'd be comfortable sending Mia back to daycare, it would be better just to pull her out rather than basically paying college tuition to hold her space indefinitely.

So what's our plan?

Basically, we're winging it 😂. Jeff's mom and brother are taking Mia when they can, and we're trying to arrange a weekly playdate or "preschool" situation between Mia and her Aunt Izzy (in case you're new around here, Aunt Izzy is Jeff's (almost) two year old half sister). And besides that, we're going to keep on keeping on with our crazy split schedule of work and parenting. I also put Mia on the list for the feeder daycare that ours goes into when the kids turn two with the hopes that she'll be able to go back to daycare in March.

So there's our little story! I hope you're hanging in there with this whole quarantine thing. I tend to waver between weirdly loving the situation and the extra time with Mia, and being totally overwhelmed and anxious about the future. If you're struggling, just know that even if I share rainbows and sunshine over here, we're all having a hard time.

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Monday, August 10, 2020

What I'm Shopping - Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Today is the day that I get to access the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale! This year, Nordstrom did staggered sale access based on how many dollars you drop there every year. It turns out, I drop medium dollars ;) It seems kind of silly that they set up access this way, because if they wanted to build influencer buzz, they did it 10 days too early for me and 16 days too early for the general public, who get to shop on 8/16.

Anyway, here's what's currently saved to my wishlist - now I just have to trim it down a little lot haha ;) I'm definitely going for these booties in cognac to hopefully fill a hole in my wardrobe, and I'm ordering this coat in a 3T for Mia with the hopes we'll be able to roll the sleeves and get two year's worth of wear out of it.

Are you shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale this year? What's on your wishlist? Do you have access yet?

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Friday, August 7, 2020

July Budget

I share my clothing budget here every month. My budget per month is $350, which may seem like a lot to some people or a little to others, but for me feels just right. I include all of my clothes, coats, shoes, and accessories in that budget, but not athletic gear, pajamas, or intimates.

I always sit down to write my monthly budget posts like, "oh, I didn't buy anything this month right?" and then there are like 10 things sitting on my budget Pinterest board. But like, really, I think because we went out of town twice this month, I totally blacked out on everything I bought in July.

The standouts though are definitely the ruffle tank and these jeans! I got the ruffle tank in black and white, and I basically wear both of them once a week. So cute with skirts and pull-on shorts! And then the jeans. Omg the jeans. They might be the perfect skinny jeans. They stretch, they're amazingly comfortable, but they don't stretch out. Just calling it now, I will wear them every day this fall.

Here's the rest of the damage for July:

LOFT Striped Shorts - originally $59.50, on sale $24.75
LOFT Stitched Belt - originally $39.50, on sale $19.75
J.Crew Rain Boots - originally $68.00, on sale $34.00
J.Crew Stone Cluster Ring - originally $29.50, on sale $14.75
J.Crew Ruffle Ribbed Tank (in black and white) - originally $49.50, on sale + used rewards $17.30 x2 = $34.60
J.Crew Dot Chain Bracelet - originally $19.50, on sale $14.25.
J.Crew Stacking Ring - originally $29.50, on sale $14.75
J.Crew Jeans - originally $128.00, on sale $64.00, used rewards $59.00.

Total spent: $215.85

For August, I'm going to be shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale with (hopefully) a bit of restraint. I mostly have my eye on these booties, this dress, these sneakers, and this (splurge) bag. I get access on Monday, so cross your fingers for me! If you aren't familiar, the sale opens based on your Nordstrom status on four different days, and then to the general public on 8/19 - full details here.

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