Wednesday, April 27, 2016

What's in my diaper bag?

I'll be honest, with my first kiddo I didn't really have a diaper bag.  I brought along an item or two here and there and figured I would learn as I went what the 'must haves' were.  And boy was I right. I had so many 'I wish I had...' moments.  This pregnancy has been different.  I've learned what my must haves are, and that life as a mama is just easier when you have 'grab and go bag' readily prepared for whatever life brings you when you're grocery shopping, at the doctor, or the park.  

So grateful I found these wonderful companies and their contribution to my 'bag of tricks' to make Mama life a little easier.

Diaper Bag by Timi + Leslie: I loved that this diaper bag doesn't LOOK like a diaper bag.  I'll use it as a purse when my young mama days are over.  It doesn't feel huge but it has SO much space and so many compartments.  I like occasionally using other bags when I only need a few items.  But I'm a huge fan of this bag as our 'official' diaper bag. 

 Bloom Kind Wipes: Going on a thousand diaper runs to the grocery store with baby #1 was my least favorite thing.  I became a Sam's club convert.  Being able to stock up AND save money... WIN WIN! Bloom Kind are definitely my favorite.  They are genuinely the softest wipes I've ever felt, and I love that the economy sized box you buy is filled with pouches of wipes that easily fit into your diaper bag.  They are wonderful for sensitive skin.  And they are a great bang for your buck. In fact, check out this AMAZING deal currently running on Amazon. 

 Doodlebum Diapers: I'm a hybrid.  I don't exclusively use disposable OR cloth diapers.  I use both.  And it works great for us! I'm a working mom, so when things are busy or we are out and about, I like the ease of disposable diapers.  Especially for babysitters as well.  But do you have any idea how much money you can save by even using ONE cloth diaper a day? Let alone more than that.  Any time we are home for a good chunk of time, I try to use cloth diapers and just do a little extra laundry.  I know that it has really helped us to stretch our monthly budget. And I can't brag about these enough! I like that this particular diaper (Eco-Posh) is less bulky than others can be for a newborn.

 Gathre Micro Changing Mat: Call me a bit of a germaphobe, but I think this is a must have especially for changing a baby on the go in public bathrooms.  I flew a lot with Avery and airport bathrooms can be the worst, along with retailers like Walmart.  But it's even great for your own home (I don't have a changing table).  And it's incredibly easy to clean and easy to pack around.

 Logan + Lenora Wet Bag: I love how cute this multipurpose bags are. A wet bag is a must have for me as a mom.  To contain any kiddo mess that inevitably happens when you're out and about.  The dirty spit up clothes, potty toddler accidents, wet pool clothes, blow out covered clothes, cloth diapers, you name it! But I also love that for day to day, I can store all of the 'diaper changing essentials' in it so that they are easy to find.  And dad doesn't have to carry the whole diaper bag for a quick diaper change.

 Tubby Todd All Over Ointment:  Lets be real, I live in the desert.  Where the air seems to suck the life out of you from time to time.  (Even though I LOVE the dry heat!) But rather than carry a bazillion tubes of creams in a diaper bag (adult lotion, infant lotion, diaper rash cream etc) I love that this product is kind of a catch all!  It works great for cradle cap, dry skin, diaper rash, burns + scrapes. And it is yet another product great for sensitive skin, made with natural products.  

Lucy + Leo Natural Chap-stick: Again, you west coast desert mamas understand! Chap-stick and lotion are just a way of life out here.  But I love that this chap-stick is not only great for mom, but also for kiddos and babies.  Avery's lips are ALWAYS chapped.  But I don't like using most chap-sticks on her because she is young enough that she doesn't understand to not lick her lips and inevitably ingest some.  An organic natural chap-stick makes me feel a little better about it.

Applewhite Handmade Medicine Bag: She has tons of adorable zipper pouches.  They organize items in a diaper bag to make things easier to find. I thought this one was so cute.  I use it to store ointments, band-aids, orajel etc.

LifeFactory Bottle I can't brag enough about these bottles.  They are super durable and transition into sippy cups and water bottles for when they are older.  They are a special type of glass that is built to endure going from freezing to boiling without breaking.  The silicone grip also serves as a great protector for the inevitable dropping that comes with handing it to a kiddo. 

Crane Travel Humidifier: Have I mentioned I live in the desert? I feel like every time the weather changes seasons, our noses and throats get a little raw.  I love that their products help us to feel better and breathe a little easier.  Not to mention they are adorable and can be purchased almost anywhere.  (Have you seen their full sized humidifiers?) I thought their travel humidifier was so cool!  A less expensive item if you don't want to buy a full-fledged humidifier.  Or a nice little one to bring along for traveling. 

My Favorite Burpcloths: 
Because messes happen all the time, and lets be honest, one burpcloth doesn't cut it. 
Especially after a good spit up when you're out and about.

Sakatah Colors: I'm also a huge fan of their crib sheets and accessories!
Red Bunny Designs: They also have adorable bows and accessories for kiddos!
Blue Brontide: I LOVE their wooden plates and utensils for kids along with their pacifier clips.

BabyNell Hat: I can't brag enough about her unique style of baby clothes.  They are all handmade and many home-designed fabrics. I love how soft and easy to bring along this baby hat is, and that it goes with everything.  I like having it on hand in-case it gets breezy or chilly outside.

Loved Baby Onesie:  I like having a change of clothes in my diaper bag just in case for blowouts, spit ups etc.  I love how timeless and classic so many of these onesies are.  Not to mention many are gender neutral and great for every kid. And they are organic, which is a great bonus. 

Fact and Fiction Toys - Play Keys: Their wooden toys are adorable! I wanted to get toys for my kids that won't go in and out of style, and that maybe they can share with their kids someday.  

Sophie the Giraffe: Made in France from 100% natural rubber.  Classy Sophie. But really, I love knowing that it's a toy safe for my kiddo to chew.  It's also easy to grasp, and the squeaker is great too.

Nomilu Pacifier Clip: A Passy Clip is something I didn't have with my first kiddo and am so excited about for our second.  They attatch to toys, binkies etc. and keep them in reach of kiddos and more sanitary for mom. 

Natursutten Binkie: I love their pacifiers, and that you can pair them with any pacifier clip.  They have different shapes and sizes so you can find one your baby will like. 

Feltman + Co Wooden Rattle: I like having this in my diaper bag as a way for 'Big Sister' to help entertain 'Little Sister'. They also have some great teethers in just about every color.

Little Sapling Toys Cookie Teether: Serioulsy all of their products are to-die for.  They have toys, teethers, rattles, accessories and even decor.  The doughnut teether is one of my favorite.  And the US states teethers are a great gift idea. 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Easter Series

Easter is a very important holiday to me and I though long and hard about how to show that to my little girl.   I wanted to include pieces that would last much longer than chocolate or candies.  Things I hope she will want to hang on to, and maybe even share with her children someday.  This year, I wanted to fill her 'Easter Basket' with pieces that would remind her of her Savior's love. We had some incredible shops participate, and so many timeless pieces.  I'm so excited to share them with you!  I hope they help anyone else interested in Easter basket ideas!

I fell in love with these when I found them.  They are customize-able and I thought they were perfect to pair with a blessing dress for a baby girl.  Avery's dress has been collecting dust in her closet, and I'm excited to display it now in her nursery, and help her to see how special that day was to us, and to her.
USE CODE:  INSTAGRAM for 20% off

2- Journal: Promptly Journals
I cannot brag about these enough! I am SO bad at journal keeping.  I often look at the blank paper and am at a loss as to what I should write, or what would be important or interesting to my gals down the road. But Promptly Journals make it easy.  It's so nice to have questions to answer, and a timeline laid out for me (so I also don't have to write in it every day or even every week, but all the important things are jotted down and documented).  

3- Pacifier Clip + Bunny Teether: Passy Clips
How adorable are these?! I loved how unique the bunny teether was for an Easter basket. And how the clips are fairly neutral and go with just about anything!
USE CODE:  famfaves20 for 20% off now through Easter!

4- Dress: June Park
I chose to use this ADORABLE dress as a blessing dress for our next little gal.  I loved how simple, soft, and timeless it was.  And they are even cuter on older girls, if that's even possible!

5- Bows: Penny and Elke
I loved how soft and timeless these bows were.  They fit with just about any outfit, and the headband itself isn't tight or uncomfortable.  It's also nice to take it off and see no red marks on a little baby's head. 

6- Bonnet + Moccasins: Little Pine Outfitters
I'm such a sucker for bonnets and loved how this one paired with June Park's dress for a blessing dress.  But man is this lady talented! Her shoes and bonnets in all kinds of sizes, styles and colors blow me away.

I love how timeless ALL of her pieces are.  She has the cutest clothing pieces for boys and girls.  Handmade in rural Pennsylvania.  Just looking at her feed makes me miss the rolling green hills.  I thought this bunny was the perfect size and shape for a little baby to hold and play with.  

8- Family History Board Book: Pinhole Press
 This may or may not be my favorite new found product. These board books are customize-able.  You can fill them with any pictures + words you'd like.  Family history is something very important to me (which plays a huge role in my business name change, post coming soon).  But it's so hard to think of how to share it with a little kid, let alone a child or a toddler.  I chose to fill a book of ancestors for Avery and it's been so fun to see her already recognize names and faces. The greatest gift of Easter, to me, is being able to be with our families forever.  And I've loved helping her get to know the wonderful people that have gotten us where we are today.

1- Easter Print: Beth Allen 
Having art work of the Savior around our home has made a big difference in the atmosphere of our home for us.  It's put Him and His sacrifice for us on our minds often.  And It's been so neat to see our little girl recognize Him and talk about Him. I loved how this painting by Beth Allen was so kid friendly and bright.  I put it up for Easter, but I may not be taking it down any time soon.

2- Dress: The Crafted Co (see below)

3- Bonnet + Moccasins: Little Pine Outfitters (see above)

1- Bonnet: Links and Co
Her beanies, bonnets and Pom Pom Blankets are all adorable! Not to mention her Crochet Crowns.

2- Teether: Other Ware
These teething rings are so squishy even I love to play with them.  I love that they come in all sorts of colors and are an easy go-to in a diaper bag.

3- Onesie: Loved Baby
These are SO soft and durable. I love that they come in just about any color you can think of. 

This rattle is so fun and unique! I've never seen anything like it.  I love that it has holes to put it on a pacifier clip and keep it within baby's reach.  They have so many fun teethers and toys for older kiddos.
USE CODE: EASTER10 for 10% off through end of April

5- Pacifier/Rattle Clip: Sweet Ruby Co
I love how soft the leather is for her clips.  And I'm a sucker for the forest green.
USE CODE: easter20 for 20% off

6- Hazel Village Doll: Noble Carriage

7- Bib: Billy Bibs

1- Sandals + Dress: Humble Hilo
I cannot brag about this company enough! If you know me at all, you know I have a soft spot in my heart for Guatemala, but I really want our kids to think more about others than about themselves.  Giving back and serving are huge part of that.  With every purchase you make at humble hilo, you get to decide specifically which project you'd like your purchase to go toward (infant + child nutrition, literacy + education, micro-finance loans for women, etc.) Not to mention their products are adorable! 

2- Bonnet: Little Pine Outfitters (see above)

3- Doll: Esme Made
My favorite thing about her dolls is they are fairly indestructible for kiddos.  They can't undo or ruin her perfectly done hair (which my little girl does with most dolls).  And she customizes them to match whatever outfit/skin tone/hair color etc. you ask.  So your little girl can have a dolly that matches her Easter dress. 

4- Teether + Pacifier Clip: Nomi Lu
I thought these wooden beaded teethers were so fun and unique.  

1- Owl: 3 and 3 Heirloom Dolls (See Below)

2- Bow: Chico Rose (See Below)

3- Taupe Pinafore: Wren and James

4- Shoes (Left): Zimmerman Shoes (See Below)

5- Leather Shoes (Right): Mason Dixon (See Below)

1- Peter Pan Collar Shirt: Wren and James
I loved her clothing pieces long before I had a little girl.
USE CODE: LORAREADER10 for 10% off through March 31st

I love having pretend-cooking parties with my little girl and I love that this is a toy she can actually use! She's loved cracking them open and pretending to cook me little sunny side up eggs for breakfast. 
Her products are currently 20% off!

3- Handmade Heirloom Owl: 3 and 3 Heirloom Dolls
The time and effort put into every one of her pieces is incredible.  Every detail is perfect.  The type of dolls I wish I could make for my girls but I'm no where near that talented. They are durable and made to last and well worth every penny.

4- Leather Shoes: Mason Dixon
These shoes are handmade in one of our favorite towns, Philly! I love that the different colors of leather pair well with any outfit, for a boy or girl. And they are so durable and last, each kid can take a turn wearing them as they grow. 

5- Pinafore with suspenders: Lucy and Leo
I love that these are coming back into style! Their pinafores are so cute.
USE CODE: littleclothesbigchange for free shipping

6- Bow: Chico Rose (see below)

2- Purse: Petite Hero
Avery is always trying to steal my purses.  She was so excited to have one her size!

3- Dress: The Little Badger
Her rompers and dresses are so fun. I loved the bows at the waist of this dress.  I thought it was so fun and unique.  

4- Chore Chart Magnets: Abbie's House
This has been a game changer for us.  Part of thinking of Easter and the atonement is a renewal in wanting to be our best selves.  I tried to think of a way to express that to Avery and help her.  These chore charts were something fun for her level and something she can continue to grow in to.  You can customize which magnets you'd like (and get new sets as they get older) and make a board for each child. 
FREE printable punch cards/reward system this month on their site!

5- Shoes: Nori Child
Those bows!

I loved how unique and timeless her leather bows were.
USE CODE: EASTER valid march 24-27 15% off

1- Shoes: Zimmerman Shoes (See Below)

2- Bonnet: Hello Charlie Shop (See Below)

1- Matching Game: Pinhole Press
These are also completely customize-able (and a nice quiet activity for kiddos in church).  I chose to do a family history matching game set.  But you could do Easter images, family images, or just about anything else  you can think of!

2- Bow: Chico Rose
A brand new shop with a variety of fun, affordable bows + bowties!
USE CODE: easter20 for 20% off 

3- Bonnet: Hello Charlie Shop 
These are so nice for spring/summer for little bald baby heads.  A huge plus is how adorable they are.
USE CODE: EASTER2016  for 15% off through sunday

Getting a new Easter dress was always a huge part of Easter for us growing up (especially with my British Grandma).  When I was little, it was exciting to dress up and feel clean and pretty.  But now grown up, it's made me appreciate the respect my parents and grandparents tried to show by having us put on our best dress for Easter Sunday.
USE CODE: familyfaves for 10% off

5- Rabbit: Maileg

6- Shoes: Zimmerman Shoes 
Fourth generation shoe makers Handmade at the family's 1888 shoe factory in Pennsylvania. Talk about timeless. And I love shoes that are so durable, they won't be worn out by only one kid wearing them!

1- Dress (Left): Holley and Sage 

2- Dress(Right): The Crafted Co (see below)

3- Easter Print: Beth Allen  (see above)

1- Doll: Finn and Ivor
So many people have asked about these dolls! And for a limited time they are really inexpensive! My grandma even loves them. They are also running a giveaway! It ends Sunday! Make sure to enter!

2- Bonnet: Little Pine Outfitters (see above)

3- Dress: The Crafted Co
Her dresses and feed are filled with the most amazing spring tones. Perfect Easter dresses.
USE CODE: craftedspring15

4- Shoes: Piper Finn 
I loved that these shoes are good for any season, year long, boy or girl. I just wish they had some in adult sizes!
USE CODE: 25off 
expires friday march 18th

check out the other half of the Easter Series at Mandi Rae Photography
+ Find our Easter giveaway at Mandi Rae's Instagram