Babies’ Baptism

I wished & hoped that Lucy & Zach could be baptized surrounded by family on a warm sunny day on the beach. I realized we were too dazed & sleep deprived for that to occur last summer. So I began planning for their baptism day back in the winter.

The minister that married Jason & I is from my beach grandparents’ church & he happens to preach weekly on the beach all summer beginning Memorial Day weekend Sunday. Luckily, he agreed with us how special it would be to perform this for us. John coordinated with our home church, his church session & us & we worked it out! To make it even more special, my Nana was able to be the elder who presenting & stood¬†up with us.

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The beach church service is a casual affair, but I still wanted the babies to wear special baptism outfits. After being unimpressed with what’s in stores with both the quality & price, Nana, Mom & I had an idea that ended up being out-of-this-world awesome. Nana took the remains of my mom’s wedding dress {we’d cut the bottom lace off to go around my wedding bouquet} & with the help of patterns, Nana made Lucy a beautiful dress & Zach a precious long all. Y’all, it made me tear up thinking of the historical & family significance of those outfits. They’re even more gorgeous in person than in my mind or the photos.

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Lucy went first. Then it was Zach’s turn.

DSC02613DSC02613 copyThey did great! No crying. Just looks of looking around & playing with their outfits. They even managed to sit in our laps for the remainer of the service.

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DSC02628We were also lucky to have a lot of family gather together for the event. My aunt rode down with us, my parents & brother from VA, my grandfather from Charlotte, &¬†Jason’s parents from GA.

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With my parents

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with Jason’s parents

DSC02644We took advantage of everyone being together for lots of photos.

Enjoying Car Trips with Two

Car trips. They used to be three hours of husband & wife chatting in the front seat. Catching up after busy weeks. Or time spent napping or reading or playing online.

Now I tend to sit in the way back of the minivan while Jason drives. There’s little chatting between us as it’s hard to hear in the back with the AC on.

If the stars align & both Lucy & Zach sleep, I’m sometimes able to pull out my book or catch up on blogging.

But for all those times at least one if not both are up, here’s the few tricks up my sleeve.

Keep favorite toys close at hand. Bright lights & colors & music might seem annoying to parents at first, but its way better than hours of crying.

Books, books & more books. I read in silly voices & alternate which baby gets to help me hold. We bring board books & soft crinkly ones.

Extra bottles. If I think we’ll need them, I premix & keep them in a Packit cooler. We didn’t need them Monday, thanks to timing nursing & naps. But Friday night, hungry babies meant a McDonald’s stop for hot water to warm the bottles.

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Snacks! We have a boon snack ball {which is cute but spills out easily} & the Munchkin snack catchers. Before we take a trip, I fill up the snack containers with a mix of their favorites: Cheerios, yogurt melts, puffs & chews. It cracks me up to watch Lucy dig through & skip over the Cheerios for the melts.

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Monday, I introduced Zach {once he woke from a beautiful nap} & Lucy {my hungry nap fighter} to Sprout’s new toddler snacks. They loved the yogurt bites. The chews were a new texture they quickly warmed up to. I tried them both & thought they were delicious! I felt good giving them snacks I knew were organic as well as mostly fruit/veggies versus being just basic grains.

If all else fails, whip out your smart phone or tablet & pull up baby Einstein &/or the Chica show on YouTube. We might’ve watched 45 mins of Baby Einstein lullaby Friday night!

What are your best car trip tricks & tips?!

I was sent sample sizes of the new Sprout snacks for purpose of this review. I wasn’t otherwise compensated. My thoughts & opinions are genuinely my own.

First Birthday Celebration

Happy 1st birthday to Zach & Lucy today! Due to a stomach bug that’s attacked Lucy, posts are delayed this week. I’m taking us back to Saturday when we had the pleasure that afternoon to gather with close friends at our house to celebrate Zach & Lucy.

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Due to {unrelated to us} sicknesses & life’s busyness, our small party was smaller than expected, but Lucy & Zach didn’t mind. They loved the cuddles, attention, decorations & friends.

I went with a monkey theme & kept things fairly simple. Invites, cupcake decorations & food tents were ordered off etsy & printed by Walmart & by my Dad. We found monkey boy & girl balloons at Party City & monkey paper goods at Walmart.

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For food, I had help last weekend with my parents & Friday night from my aunt & friend Kelly. Mom & I baked mini banana bread loaves for adult goodie bags {kids also received monkey stickers & bubbles}.

Kelly & I made ‘monkey tails’ aka pretzel rods dipped in milk chocolate & green sprinkles. Sue used my mom’s idea of ‘monkey caps’ – toothpick sized kabobs of tomato, basil & mozzarella which I drizzled with balsamic glaze minutes before guests arrived. Friday night, we also created a mix of kiddo puffs, melts & Cheerios for the littles.

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I made my favorite banana pudding in cups for easy serving & enjoying. I picked up a tropical trail mix at Walmart. I sat out ‘monkey crunches’ {chips, carrots & tomatoes with ranch dip} too. And we had my {& now Zach’s beloved} Gigi’s cupcakes for dessert. I ordered mini cupcakes for us & two regular ones for Lucy & Zach.

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So I expected Lucy to love her cupcake because she loves fruit & sweet pouches. I wasn’t sure about Zach. Y’all! They drove in before we even had time to sing or think of putting in the ‘1’ candle. Zach made a mess! It was awesome. Lucy took a little encouragement from me but she ended up liking it too.

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Zach birthday cake
After cleaning up Lucy & giving Zach a quick bath & outfit changes, it was time to bring out their gift from us {a coupe that their friend Reagan also enjoyed}.

Zach & Lucy birthday party giftsThen we opened gifts from our sweet friends. Lucy & Zach received wiggly giggly balls, birthday books & boon snack/bowls. The books are our current favorites on rotation!

Two babies means cause for two celebrations! Up this weekend is the family birthday/baptism beach weekend party!

Babies First Easter

Last Easter was my last time travelling while pregnant/without babies in hand. It seems like a lifetime & just weeks ago at the same time.

My parents, Lucy, Zach & I packed up & headed down to my grandparents’ on OIB Thursday night. Lucy & Zach slept & did great until about 15 minutes left & then I was finding Baby Eisten videos on youtube as quick as they would load!

Friday, we brought Lucy & Zach along for Mom, Nana & I to make Walmart & grocery store runs. They fell asleep in the van so we ended up shopping in shifts leaving one adult & both babies in the car at all stores. My Nana has agreed to make Lucy & Zach baptism outfits using the fabric from my mom’s wedding dress. We found patterns at Walmart & I’m so excited!

Friday night, my mom made this awesome shrimp & wild rice casserole. The recipe will soon be it’s own post & to be remade soon at my house.

Saturday morning, I took a mommy break with my Nana & went to Happy Nails for a pedicure & my first shallac manicure. So far, my nails are holding up to all that two babies can throw at them. I returned in time to feed both & for Lucy to take a nap while Zach accompanied Jason, Nana, my mom & me to the local neighborhood Easter egg hunt & raw egg toss. We just watched from the sidelines this year. But it’ll be so fun for Lucy & Zach to participate next year in something that’s been going on since before I was born!

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Saturday afternoon, Mom & I took the babies for a long stroll {yay for stroller naps!}. We took over the floor in my grandparents’ den with baby toys. Their dog Bocce was unsure what to think of mobile babies at first. He quickly learned to like them after we let him clean up the floor around their high chairs! And he learned quick to follow behind to pick up dropped Cherrios from the stuffed plastic eggs we gave them to play with.

We dyed Easter eggs that evening. The babies thought they were pretty cool.

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Sunday we started off at the beach church service. Both babies were interested at first then got warm & snuggly on us & took a nap. I found their super cute, casual & coordinating without being too matchy/matchy bunny onesies at The Children’s Place on clearance btw.

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We arrived home by late afternoon {the babies napped most of the car ride while I read a book in the back seat!}, enjoyed Easter lunch KFC leftovers for dinner & went to bed early. Happy {late} Easter all!

happy St Patrick’s day!

Lucy & Zach wore coordinating Mom’s lucky charm outfits to daycare Fri. Just had to share!

Happy first St Patty's day Lucy & Zach!

Happy first St Patty’s day Lucy & Zach!

We’ll all be wearing green today as we lounge around the house & run a few errands.

Hope the luck of the Irish was with you this weekend! (& since my wolfpack lost Sat, I’m all for my brother’s alum. Go VCU Rams!)