Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Time to Sip & See

Today on the blog I bring you some pictures from the Sip & See for Little P. A new twist on a baby shower where everyone comes after the baby arrives and has the opportunity to sip on a few drinks while seeing the new baby. I love this idea as a way to welcome the baby's arrival and for an opportunity to meet and hold the new baby.
 
 We had Little P's Sip & See when she was three weeks old. I felt comfortable with family and friends holding her, but I know some people may not. We also wanted to wait on the gender of baby #2 so a party afterwards worked perfectly! I was very blessed from everyone involved and who attended. My good friend and sorority sister Mrs. Organized co hosted with my MIL Loves-to-Cook and Grandma Owl graciously opened her home for the event place.
The color scheme was pink and orange such a fun girlie bright combo. I loved every detail! 




Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Arrivederci April

I just gave my March recap about two weeks ago and April comes with a swoop. Time really is flying by. 
In April...
The month started off with Hockey Husband taking a week off to help with the transition to two kids after Outdoorsy Sister/Auntie had to get back to her life!
We celebrated birthdays for Cousin Ballerina who turned five and from a distance said happy birthday to Rancher Dad!

Little C did lots of fun things with Daddy while mommy stayed home to relax with Little P. Disneyland, Marina, Picnic in the Park and so on! Little C hit 33 months meaning the big 3 is only three months away!
I had my amazing Sip &See- recap post coming!

Little P hit one month old! I didn't do a recap. Mom fail. We celebrated Grandpa Baseball and Grandpa Golf's baseball with some yummy bbq at Lucille's.









We said happy birthday from a distance to Brother Cyclist. 

Lot's of park days, fishing at the lake, Pretend City pretty much getting out of the house every morning! Lots of Little P looking cute and doing her tummy time while big brother works on his alphabet and numbers. 

I was off to a friend's baby shower for her baby boy number two! And, they just bought a house down the street... so I can't wait to spend more time with her adorable toddler and Little C's new best friend and her soon-to-be-squishy-adorable-newborn!





Monday, April 29, 2013

Picture Perfect

Five weeks ago we invited a stranger into our home who quickly became a friend. Suzi from Suzi Bowles Photography came to shoot our newborn photos in our home.
Right from the start I was impressed with Suzi's level of professionalism this continued on to the day of our shoot. She gave me tips to follow the day of the shoot- like setting our heater to 85* an hour before to make it nice and toasty for baby- and she arrived with props galore! 
This was such a different experience from Little C's newborn shoot. The photographer who will not be named arrived with nothing, just asked me if I had a white sheet. 
I didn't know about the heater trick either!
What a difference it was working with with someone who had a lens for every situation and all the gear to make amazing pictures. 
{Of course those photos were still amazing because Little C was in them.}

On to the photo shoot!
behind the scenes:
turned into this:

Wow, right?

However, the quality of Suzi's work cannot be denied. It was above and beyond. Not just that though her demeanor was very relaxing putting Hockey Husband and I in a calm mood on what could have been a stressful morning.
Suzi is the mom of toddler and it showed because she was amazing with Little C!! This was by far the best part. I had no idea the difference it could make working with a photographer who really knows how to interact with children.
Sometimes, they are the hardest part of taking pictures. You know cranky, uncooperative, totally just want to run all over the place toddlers?

All of those cute faces from Little C?
That was all Suzi's doing. 

Her tips, tricks, and gentle nature with newborns meant Little P slept through her whole photo shoot! We started the morning off with some family pictures while Little P had her morning snack and then she slept like a pro. This helped to get Little P in and out of cute little wraps and lots of positions. I asked Suzi if I could take some behind the scene pictures, I hope they really give you an idea of that wow factor that I got. 
 what my little iphone captured: 
Suzi working her magic:
We did this picture to match Little P's nursery! We are going with a bright pink and yellow theme. 

Sibling love 

There were so many more pictures!

If you are around the Orange County area I highly recommend working with Suzi for a professional experience and stunning photos. 

Blog

Disclaimer:  Please note that the above mentioned service was bought and purchased by me with my own money. NO monetary compensation was exchanged for this review. I loved my photography experience so I thought I would do a review. All opinions are strictly my own and may differ from yours. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. 

Friday, April 26, 2013

Oh So Sweet!

It's Friday!
It's also time for the Spring Sweets Swap Reveal!
Spring Sweets Swap
Today is the day to link up all those lovely sweets from your new bloggy friend
Remember to tweet your post today using hashtag #SSS13 Help get the word out there and interact with all the SSS members quickly!

I was paired with Amanda from Life According to Amanda
Life According To Amanda

Who doesn't love getting a package in the mail? It really makes for a "sweet" day!
I don't know about you, but my sweet tooth is always happy for new goodies. 
Thank you everyone for participating in the spring Sweets Swap 2013. Take the time to visit a few other blogs and compare goodies!

Go ahead, link up below!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

My Latest Obsession


Next month I'll be embarking on a short three day trip with two kids in tow. After my last flight around Christmas with Little C I was wishing that I brought a backpack versus the diaper bag that I have done in the past or carry-on I did for that trip. From there I started wishing and wanting for a 

JU JU BE

I had heard of it before and seen them without really knowing what it was, but when I really starting researching I fell in love. Oh, and the prints to die for. At first I was looking into a Dakine backpack because I love that brand, but I needed more. More pockets, more suited for kids, more!

I loved the Fuscia Blossoms print it was pink and orange another latest obsession of mine is that color combo. I was drawn to it before knowing I was having a girl- I wanted everything pink and orange! 


So up it went on my Wish List of my already full Pinterest board. 

I thought I would share this today since Ju Ju Be released their new Summer line today!
Go check it out here!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Thoughts on Bangs

Last December I decided to take a risk. A hair risk. I got bangs. Now this is huge because bangs are a commitment. We all know what that in between period is like when you no longer want bangs. The growing out phase of "too long to be bangs but too short to go with the rest of your hair totally awkward phase".

Why did I take this risk, well it all started one fun morning. Playing around with Colin in bed and tickling when he made the mistake of thinking scratching was tickling. He "tickled" my forehead and immediately I felt doom. The very next day I had a scratch that represented Harry Potter proportions.

After days of people asking me what happened and having my big scratch on display I decided i needed to cover it up! I also had the Ladies Tea coming up and didn't want that saved in pictures. The result was totally cute bangs I fell in love with! Plus I got a new look for all the pictures!
Me and Aunt Animal Prints
Eventually though, I grew tired of these bangs. They were getting way too long and one dreaded day I cut them myself. I think it was in a total moment of frustration. I know I didn't know what I was thinking because I cut them crooked and too short and I did it on Easter morning! Ah! I had trimmed them before but felt they were still a little too long so I went way short this time. The result: totally awkward pictures of my bangs.
Thankfully Little P made up for the cuteness in the picture. Just look at her pretty reddish hair! 

What's next? So far I am undecided. I really liked the bangs so do I keep them or just let them grow?
What about you? Have bangs or ever had them before? Thoughts?

Monday, April 22, 2013

Already April

Hello blogworld, family, and friends. I've titled this post "Already April" now I realize it's nearly the end of April, but I've yet to give my March recap. Been petty much living under a rock for the past five weeks over here.

I do however have lots to document in those past five weeks. Without delay...

March Madness
The ultimate big news that happened in March was having a baby! So, yeah there was that. Let's start at the beginning though. 

March started with Hockey Husband and I celebrating nine years together, four of which have been wedded bliss! 

Right after that Sister Glamorous and her husband, who I'll call Brother Cyclist, came for a visit! during their visit we went to the LA Zoo, participated in an early Easter egg hunt, visited the beach, went to the pool, got manicures while the guys went to hockey games and golfing.
days before Little P joined us!
Birthday Madness begun and I got to take the fabulous Nurse SC to lunch for some girl time. 
The next day Sister Outdoorsy, Scrabble Mama, and Rancher Dad flew in to visit. 
The guys smoked a pork shoulder for dinner while the girls headed to the nail salon for pedicures!
( I had to complement that manicure)

Then the very best thing this year happened. Little P was born!! 
You know just in case you've never read this blog before- we had a baby girl last month! 
The sex was a complete surprise even though Hockey Husband had a hunch it was girl all along. 

Some guest posters took over the blog for a week. And, apparently I should have booked a month's worth as I got swallowed into toddler, newborn, breastfeeding for the next few weeks. 

I came back to blogging to say Happy One Week to Little P!

Celebrated more birthdays with a dinner for Nurse SC, cousin Soccer, and another for Sister Nicknames. 
Outdoorsy Sister was visiting us during her birthday so we had a special dinner here and had her wake up to balloons! 

A huge thank you to Outdoorsy Sister for her extended stay to help with all the household stuff, playing with Little C, and keeping me fed while I tended to Little P!
March ended with Easter celebrations. 
We ventured to Grandpa Racecar's house for a visit, breakfast on the beach at the lovely beach home of Grandma loves-to-cook and Grandpa Baseball and finished the day off with an Easter dinner hosted by Grandma Owl. 






 Three generations
 Proud grandparents with their two grandchildren!



Sunday, March 24, 2013

Little P: Week One

I'm back from my blogger maternity leave.  A big thank you again to the wonderful four bloggers who shared stories with all of you. 

shared the big gender reveal after months of being Team Green. In case you haven't heard we had a beautiful little girl. Today I'll be sharing her one week update. 





Our new nickname for Baby E now that she is here is Little P! Her nickname will match her big brothers. 

Dear Little P,
It is hard to believe you have only been in our lives seven short days. You are absolutely incredible in every way. You hardly ever cry. You only cry during diaper changes and if someone else is holding you and you want your mama. I love the way you immediately stop crying when I hold you in my arms. I love the way you fit into a perfect nook on my chest.  You've been a great nurser these past seven days. Your big brother definitely laid down some ground work and made your mama a little smarter this go around. You have dark blue eyes and light brown hair with a hint of red in it. I look forward to learning more about you and seeing what kind of person you become. I look forward to seeing if your eyes turn brown like your big brothers adorable, big brown eyes and your daddy's. Or if your eyes will turn green like me, your mama. I wonder if your hair will keep it's red or if it will go away. So many amazing weeks to come. You are loved my so many. 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Guest Blogger: Amber from Momma in Bloom





I'm wrapping up my week of guest bloggers with Amber! She dishes on the changes of having two kids. Something I've been learning a lot about this week. 
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Hey, guys! I'm Amber, or the Momma In Bloom. I'm a former Registered Nurse, turned wife (of a slight workaholic) and SAHM of two. Most days you'll find me with a "venti" iced coffee in hand and two non-detachable toddlers, accompanied by many hormonal tears (on my part). I'm growing in my role as a momma, while trying to stay true to myself... and I share it all over on my blog. So, feel free to stop by sometime! :) I was thrilled when Shellsea invited me over into her space, while on temporary maternity leave from her blog. Today, I'll be sharing my
expertiseexperiences as a momma of two, since Shellsea is, or will very soon, be a newly minted momma of two herself. I've shared thoughts on my own blog before, regarding the perfect age-difference between siblings... which mostly equated to me contemplating whether such even really existed, before finally coming to the conclusion that just about the time you think it's PERFECT, they prove you wrong. ;) I think being a mother of more than one child is not only adjustment, but sometimes a difficult one at that. Other mommas (who have 3 or more kids) have told me that the transition from one child to two children, is the most difficult. I wouldn't personally know, as I only have two myself. Either way, I think the whole experience is what you make of it. Sure there is going to be double the joy, laughter, and smiles... BUT with it also comes feelings of guilt, worry, and being overwhelmed with juggling the needs of two little ones. I felt guilty when NK (my daughter) was first-born and required so much of my attention. I worried about her big brother, LW... will he feel left out? neglected? forgotten? Jealously existed. LW had just turned two shortly after his sister was born. He was at that stage where he had feelings, but wasn't quite sure what to make of them or how to express them to us (Mommy and Daddy). He'd do what most any toddler would do when he felt a lack of attention or jealous towards his little sister... throw a temper tantrum. It was a learning curve for all of us. Remembering to ask if he was hungry or thirsty BEFORE getting tied-up in a nursing session. Keeping books on hand that he could "read" to baby sister and I during nursing sessions, so he felt included. Letting some of the household chores go during the baby's naps and dedicating that time instead to one-on-one playtime with LW. One of the most recent things LW and I have started doing is Mommy-Son Dates. I find a babysitter for little sister, then him and I spend the morning or afternoon doing something fun... just the two of us. However, the most helpful advice I can offer to newly-minted mommas of two (or three, or four... or more) is to accept the help that others offer... whether it's a meal, help doing laundry one afternoon, or babysitting one of the kiddos... it helps give you the opportunity to spend quality-time with both children and negate those feelings of jealously or rivalry in the siblings (AND guilt and worry on your behalf), especially until you are past that brand-stinkin' newborn stage and can develop more of a routine! LW-and-NK((See, because moments like these make it totally worth it!)) What have YOUR experiences been in the adjustment from one to two or more children? Please feel free to share in a lovely comment below! Good Luck, Shellsea and family! Positive vibes for a happy, healthy momma & baby! Can't wait to hear of the big news! :)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Guest Blogger: Megan from And here's to you Mrs. Robinson








Thank you for following along this week! After two wonderful guest bloggers, I have another for you!
Read along as one of the best bloggers out there reassures you that you are a wonderful mother despite that "mom guilt"
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Hello Heartfelt Happenings readers! 
I am very honored to be here today while Shellsea is out on maternity leave. 
Her Little C is basically the cutest little boy so I know baby #2 is going to be absolutely adorable too. 

I guess I should give a quick introduction. 
My name is Megan Robinson and I blog over at "And here's to you, Mrs. Robinson.I am a wife, mother, Marriage & Family degree holder, wannabe crafter, Oreo connoisseur, and sucker for Rainbow Chip frosting. My blog follows my journey through marriagemotherhood, and all the ups and downs that come with life. I also like to pretend I know something about clothescooking, and occasionally crafts


Before I became a mother, I had a whole list of things I was going to do every day 
and things I refused to ever do. 

I thought I knew how it would go down.
I set high expectations for myself and my baby {who I had yet to meet}.
And because I had such high standards, if I didn't live up to them I thought I was a terrible mother. 

There were many times I would read books, articles, and yes, some other mommy blogs and think,
"I don't do that. My baby doesn't do that. What is wrong with us?" 
I would beat myself up so much about it that at times it was hard for me to enjoy what was really there.

Photobucket

And what was really there was a happy, loving, beautiful baby boy who loved me.
A healthy, chubby son with big brown eyes and a head full of baldness.
A crazy mover and shaker who refused to stay still and taught himself to roll, crawl, and walk very early on.
A new, eternal, incredible bond between my son and I that I would cherish forever.
And all of the other wonderful things that come with motherhood. 

It took me a while but I eventually learned my most important lesson of motherhood:
I AM THE MOTHER.
I am the mother. Me. Not my neighbor, not my friend, not other bloggers, not even my doctor.
Me.
And only I know my baby best.
I know how he likes to be held at night to go to sleep.
I know how he likes to cuddle, feeling safe and warm in my arms.
I know how he eats, sleeps, and likes to play.
I know how he learns and how he interacts.
I know.
I know. 

Yes, books and friends and blogs all have their place.
There were many times where I was at a complete loss and needed to turn to someone for help and they were there. But it was still very important that I used my own gut and intuition to know what was right for me and my son. 


My son and I are both very happy even though most of the things I said I would do {or never do} didn't actually happen.
He is happy because I learned to recognize his needs, his temperament, and let him be himself.
I am happy because I have lowered the expectations for myself greatly and have tried to take it day by day, enjoying all the sweet moments. 

Motherhood is not easy. Nor is it the same experience for everyone.
We are all different. Our children are different.
But we are all meant to be together with our children for a reason.  

I know my son was meant specifically for me.
I know he was meant to bring special blessings only meant for me.
He brings me such great happiness that I never thought was possible.
And when I remember to trust myself and my own abilities, the stresses of living up to an unknown standard melts away and I am able to be the best mother to my son that I can be.

Thank you so much, Shellsea for letting me share my mothering experiences with your readers!
I'm so excited for you and your family and can't wait to meet the new little Hunnel. :)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Guest Blogger: Shelley from Hand in Hand




Hello! Did you just love Casey's post yesterday!?
I'm busy snuggling my newborn making this a great guest post from Shelley.
I hope you all enjoy it as much as I have!
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Hey, everyone! My name's Shelley and I blog over at Hand In Hand. I was so flattered when Shellsea asked me to guest post for her for when she has her new baby! I remember that time well. Aside from all of the wonderful baby snuggles and Cloud 9 hormones that make the sleep deprivation worth it, the newborn stage was all about basic survival mode for me and I felt it would be fun to do a post about what kinds of things we used most often when Emily was a newborn- things that I loved and that made things even just a little bit easier!

Since nursing was a majority of what Emily and I did in the beginning, I separated these into two categories: Nursing Essentials and Non-nursing Baby Essentials.

Non-Nursing Baby Essentials:



We used this bathtub from her first bath at home all the way until she was able to stand up and climb out of it on her own! It's great!

Oh, boy did we use a ton of these! You can never have too many burp cloths!

For the longest time I thought Emily hated being swaddles because she would fight it whenever I tried. Eventually I got to my breaking point in our sleep deprived state and I started swaddling her in this. It held her in and she slept well in it!

4. Dreft
Okay, so it's probably not that "essential" but babies do need a more sensitive laundry detergent and this one  smells amazing!

We got a cheap front carrier for like $13.00 at Target and it was a life saver. She hated being put down so hubs and I would carry her in this to do things around the house or even to walk around in public places like the park or grocery store.

Nursing Essentials:



I wore a nursing cover almost every time I nursed if I wasn't in a private place. It kept me covered up and helped Emily focus on eating. Eventually she grew to hate it and would swat at it, exposing us in the process. But for months it worked well for us!

In the beginning stages of nursing, your boobies don't know what's going on. It takes some time for them to adjust to how much milk to supply so sometimes there may be some leakage. Breast pads are key!

I had a love/hate relationship with nursing bras. They weren't always flattering or fit right but once you find the right kind (I liked some from Motherhood Maternity), it's great!

This pillow did wonders for supporting Emily during nursing sessions. I could also use it to prop her up when we weren't nursing!

I used this cream so much in the first couple of months of nursing. It helped a lot! 


There you have it! My list of essentials for having a newborn baby! 

Thank you for having me! :)


Monday, March 18, 2013

Guest Blogger: GENDER REVEAL!

Hello, Casey from Stress Case here with a BIG announcement!

Yesterday, on St. Patrick's Day,

March 17, 2013 at 9:40am,

this little Lucky Penny joined Shellsea, Hockey Husband and Little C to turn their sweet family of three into a perfect family of four.


Little Penelope Grace (and I do mean little, weighing in at 7lb 10oz and 20" long - over two pounds lighter than her big brother Little C!) is the sweetest thing, and I am so over the moon happy for Shellsea, her HH and Big Bro C!

I was so honored when Shellsea asked me to stop by the blog and share this wonderful news with all you readers (though she will probably kill me for referring to her girl by a nickname - she has a thing about nicknames!)!  Please join me in congratulating Shellsea and family on their new bundle of joy.  This new addition is sure to bring some sleepless nights, but with it will come extra smiles, laughs and new memories as their little family grows again.
 
Left: My Handsome Husband and myself with Lil C in 2010, Right: Us with sweet little Penelope on Sunday.

Feel free to come by my little corner of the blogosphere if you'd like - you can read about how grateful I am for Shellsea's first wittle baby, Lil C, HERE.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

What's in a name?

Do you ever think about how you got your name?
If you ever chosen a name for a baby or pet...how did you do it.
Do you peruse tons and tons of baby books?
Do you just look at your new puppy or baby and know, just know what their name is?

Me? I love picking out names. I have first and middle name combination names for days.

And, today?
I'm going to reveal the names picked for our new baby.

Growing up with a name like Shellsea I came to love it.
It became my identity.
It was slightly different but not completely out there.
I was asked quite a few times if my parents were hippies. Was I a flower child? People would ask.

I was proud of my name growing up. People would try to call me Chelsea. I would correct them. Try to nickname me Shelly. I would correct them.
{Nicknames a whole different topic.}

I hope my children come to love their names. I hope they are proud of their names.
Hockey Husband and I chose our names for future children years ago.
At the time the names were not that popular but, not completely
 obscure either. Now? Those same names are pretty popular!
But, that is okay I am in love with them. 

Curious, yet?
Our names

Ethan Charles 

Penelope Grace

You might be wondering then why has the baby been called "Baby E"?
{no, I haven't been holding out on you}
here's the long story...
In the event that we have a girl, we chose a nickname for Penelope eons ago.
We both fell in love with the name.
I liked it long, Hockey Husband wanted a nickname claiming no child should have a four syllable name. Psshaw. 

With neither of us being in love with "Penny" as much as "Penelope" we started brainstorming alternatives. 
Lope, Nellie, Pen were all suggested by family. 

Then one day, we saw PenELope. And, we loved Little El. I like "ie" endings so Ellie was born.
But, I still love Penelope in full. 
If it's a boy,
Ethan... he'll be our little E boy! 
Ethan and Colin- I love those brother names! 
The excitement to put a name and identity with this little baby I have been dreaming of for months is beyond measure.

Come back Monday for the big name and gender reveal! 
Casey from Stress Case will be here guest posting on Monday. 
Don't miss it!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Emerald Dreams

By now you may have heard, the color of the year was announced as Emerald.
 Emerald Green. 

I absolutely love this.
Not only is {almost} every shade of green my favorite it all seems so perfect this year. 

This year we are TEAM GREEN for baby #2
&
our baby is expected to come on St. Patrick's Day!

What a perfect year for the color to be emerald. 

I was getting into the emerald kick last fall. 
I had a thing for one shoulder dresses as well. 

I wore two different emerald dresses one to my high school reunion and another to celebrate Grandma Owl's birthday last September! 
Hockey Husband and I 
{top}
HH and me with Teacher Kindness with her Husband, Conductor
{bottom}
The family ladies for Grandma Owl's birthday

Sharing my love of green dresses with Alison at Long Distance Loving!
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