October 24, 2014

Five on Friday

Hey there, happy Friday!

1. Halloween Fun - In the last few weeks O has been seriously living it up in the Halloween / Pumpkin Patch / Fall department. He's been wearing his pirate costume like it's going out of style! He's actually going to be a dinosaur on Halloween, but his pirate costume is so much easier to wear while playing.

2. Kiwi Crate - A little while back I signed up for a Kiwi Crate subscription for O and we have bee loving it! If you don't know about Kiwi Crate, it's a monthly subscription box that encourages kid's creativity and curiosity through science, arts & crafts, imaginative play, etc. In our most recent box we had a project where we created a catapult and then a castle. As you can see O looooved the catapult!

We usually save the box for long afternoons between the end of nap time and when I need to cook dinner -- that way O has something to keep him busy while I cook!

If you'd like $10 off your first box, use this referral link (and we'll get $10 off our next box too)!

3. Spiders & Pumpkins - Our front door is ready for Halloween! We've got 7 pumpkins -- two of which are white because those are O's favorite -- and spider webs with jeweled spiders. This is about as spooky as I get, folks! Have you seen these creepy houses?
4. Apple Cider Sangria - I'm whipping up a batch of my Apple Cider Sangria this morning to bring to our friends house tonight! We're getting together to watch the Giants v. the Royals in game 3 of the World Series. #goGIANTS!!!

5. Family Photos - Our family photos are goin' down in a little over a week and I'm currently scrambling to figure out what we'll all be wearing. I'm trying to use what we have, but it's proving a little difficult to create a cohesive "look" while not making it too matchy-matchy either. Pinterest makes it all look so easy! My fave look is the one below.

Well, I think that's all for now, my friends! Have a lovely weekend!

And I'm linking up with a whole lot of people today! 
Oh Hey Friday with September Farm and The Farmer's Wife!
Friday Favorites with A Little Bit of EverythingMomfessionals, and Grace and Love.

October 23, 2014

One Year & Beyond: Keeping in Shape with a Toddler in Tow

Keeping in shape, as a mom, is a huge challenge. There never seems to be enough time in the day to get everything you need to do done, while carrying and nurturing your little ones at the same time. Even as a stay-at-home mom I have trouble making sure I put working out at the top of my to do list. While it's hard to stay consistent with getting to the gym / running / making it to a class, I make it a top priority because I feel so much better when I do. I have more energy, my jeans fit better, I sleep better, I'm an all around happier person, and better wife and mother, when I make time for working out. 

Below you'll find a few ways I make working out work for me:  

Have Stroller, Will Sweat. Up until about a year ago I was still able to strap O into our BOB Revolution SE stroller and head out for a jog. Sadly, those days are long gone, but I thought you might like to give my tried-and-true 30-Minute Stroller workout a try! It was always an easy way for me to get some exercise. If you do each of these sets for the time indicated, you'll have a kick-butt 30-minute workout under your belt when you're done, but it will probably take a bit longer than that when you factor in the inevitable snack, milk, toy requests!

In the Gym. These days I depend on the gym to get my workouts in. The childcare at our facility is top-notch, and lucky for me, O loves it there. I have it written in stone in my calendar that we will go every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning. We usually make it there all three days if I schedule it in advance and don't let anything else get in the way. Something is always bound to come up though, so I let Thursday (my day off from working in O's classroom) be my swing day in case I miss one of the other days. 

And the 1-1 1/2 hours of alone time, while O enjoys playing and snacking with his buddies in childcare, is a HUGE motivator for me to make it to the gym. I urge all of you to join a gym with childcare (some even provide it for free, like the YMCA) and take advatage of the time you can get for yourself and make it count by doing something that is good for you. 

I'm not gonna lie and pretend I don't enjoy some cute workout gear either. There are mirrors everywhere in our gym and I feel so much better when I feel at least kind of cute! I'll be including my current weigh lifting plan in my post tomorrow.

Working it From Home. I haven't worked out at home in a long time, but when I did I would always wait until O was asleep for his nap. Working out with a toddler around is almost impossible. I usually end up giving horsey rides instead of doing push-ups. My favorite ways to work out from home are following the workouts Tiffany of Bump 2 Buff shares on her IG page. She is a mom of two boys who has lost an incredible amount of weight and gained tons of muscle tone all from home -- no gym required! I've also used Jillian Michael's 30-Day Shred DVD before and it is a great workout!! 
How have you fit exercise into motherhood? Check out the other mama's blogs for their stories. And be sure to link up with us below if you also have a post on this topic.

The Not Quite Military Wife// Like a Morning Cup of Coffee// Meet the Sullivan's  
From Here to Eternity// Pig and Dac// Everyday Love
A Cowboy's Life// Life of Faith// Foxy's Domestic Side// My Delicious Adventure
Oct 2: Toddler Diaper Bag Essentials
Oct 9: Learning to love your post-pregnancy body
Oct 16: Busy Toddler Activities
Oct 23: Keeping in Shape While Caring for a Toddler

Oct 30: Sick Day Tips
Nov 6: How to Not Lose Your Patience with your Toddler
Nov 13: Favorite Toddler Outings
An InLinkz Link-up

October 21, 2014

Pumpkin Festival 2014

Long before we were even engaged Keith and I started our tradition of going to the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival together. We always start our mornings there with a breakfast of pumpkin pancakes, sausage and coffee at the Great Pancake Breakfast.

(Pumpkin Festivals of years past 2013, 2011, 2010)

This was the first year O has partook in the enjoyment of said pancakes and sausage. Last year he could careless and the year before he was still on a diet of purees. He really enjoyed them, which was totally cool because he doesn't usually go for pancakes or waffles. Note to self: make pancakes for toddler.

We also met up with our friends, the Smiths, who's son is the same age as O! His mom Jackie and I have been bestfriends since forever, so it's really fun to watch our boys play and laugh together. They had a ball goofing off and being silly together.

Every year Keith looks forward to having the Half Moon Bay Brewing Company's Pumpkin Harvest Ale, which was sold out last year. This year he was able to get some, but didn't really get to enjoy it with a cute little someone sitting on his shoulders and drumming on his head!

Mommy's mimosa!

It seemed like there were a lot more kid-friendly activities this year than the years before, or I just never noticed before. There was a whole pirate themed area with fun arts & crafts activities kids could do if their parents bought them a few "doubloons" aka pirate money. The boys (actually the moms) picked a cute little craft where they got to funnel colored sand into little bottles.

Such a fun and easy activity (perfect for someone throwing a pirate themed party -- just do it on the lawn, it's messy), that has a beautiful result. We're keeping O's on his shelf in his room!

Baby Zoey is Nico's little sister and she was so chill the whole time. We didn't hear a cry from that sweet little girl the whole time!

After the festival we headed over to our friend Scott's family farm, Pastorino Farms, to pick some pumpkins and play around. O went right for the jump house and went two rounds in there jumping with "the big boys" and then went straight for the big slide -- he's a thrill seeker, that boy!

There's Zoey, still happy as a little pumpkin!

There were horse rides (but not for us because there were no safety belts on the horses this year)...

There was a little train ride around the property...

A petting zoo.... where the O was so gentle and sweet to all the animals big and small.

Our little St. Francis Assisi, animal lover!

The best family photo we could get, but I'll take it!

What a fun day! O asked to go back the next day. He's been to three pumpkin farms / festivals in the last week, and I think he's starting to expect a visit to one each day!

October 20, 2014

Recipe: Silly Bug Pizza

Our son is a total bug lover -- aren't most young children? -- he loves to watch them crawl and climb, and while I'm not a fan of them in our house or climbing on us, I'm pretty interested in watching them too. I saw this idea for a cute bug pizza in on of the coupon ads in the Sunday paper last week and couldn't wait to recreate it for O.

There isn't really an ingredients list -- it's just standard pizza with some fun toppings arranged to look like a bug.

We used Naan bread as the base, topped it with my own pizza sauce (1/2 can of diced toms, 2 tbsps tomato paste, a little garlic, all blended in the Vitamix until smooth), shredded cheese, and then arranged the toppings:

1 slice of salami for the body
1 slice turkey pepperoni for the head
6 slices green bell pepper for arms
2 slices red bell pepper for the antennae
2 black olives for the eyes

Bake at 425 degrees on a pizza stone or pizza crisper for 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

O was so excited to sit down at the table for dinner when he heard he was having pizza with a bug on it! Upon seeing it he had a huge smile on his face and said "mommy that bug is so seeelly!", and Silly Bug Pizza was born. I hope your kiddos enjoy seeing this pizza on their plate as much as ours did!

Check out some other fun pizza tools and toys here:

October 17, 2014

Five on Friday

Hello, Friday! I almost can't even believe it's Friday again, because last Friday I was laying by the pool in Vegas with a pool drink in my hand...

and that seems like just yesterday!

1. First things first -- how about those Giants?!! I'm so excited they're going to the World Series for the 3rd time in 5 years! Go Giants!

2. Sleepy Music Suggestions? Our bedtime routine is going really well, but I'm still feeling majorly guilty when I lay O down in his crib for the night and he stands up and say, "Noooo, don't leave me all alone, mommy". He always has his blanket, lights are out, his Twilight Turtle is on, as is the white noise. I think we have a pretty good combo things going to help him drift off, but instead of the white noise I'm wondering if some nursery rhymes / bed time songs might help too. Any suggestions? 

3. We love Sugar Bit! Have you entered the Sugar Bit giveaway I'm hosting this week? If not, there's still time! We love how easy the Boys Fall Harvest Applique Shirt and Pant Set by Vive La Fete is to wear, wash and play in! I'll be putting O in it again today for a trip to a preschool Fall Festival.

4. DIY Homemade Crayons!! How cute is this idea for a sugar-free / candy-free Halloween goody bag? I'm not sure if his class will be exchanging treats together, but if we do I'm all over these!

5. Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival - We're SO excited for the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival this weekend! Each year O gets more and more into our traditions, and I think this year will be the most fun yet!

And a little housekeeping...

The winner of the Three Designing Women Holiday Gift Basket is Elizabeth B.! Congratulations, Liz!!!

And I'm linking up with a whole lot of people today! 

Oh Hey Friday with September Farm and The Farmer's Wife!
Friday Favorites with A Little Bit of EverythingMomfessionals, and Grace and Love.

I hope everyone has a great weekend! xoxox
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