Friday Favorites-4th of July Edition

Happy 4th of July!!!!

Do you have big Independence Day plans?? We plan to go to a local carnival for a bit and then tomorrow we actually will go have a BBQ. No fireworks or parade for us! Grayson naps right in the middle of the parade and is in bed WELL before the fireworks go off. I’m not a HUGE fan of of fireworks anyways but poor Curt is. Maybe he can walk to the end of the street and see them? 😉

Anyways, I thought this Friday Favorite’s Post would be centered all around 4th of July!! Enjoy!

1. This is what I’m making to take to the BBQ on Saturday. Looks good, easy and patriotic…win!

Fruit and Brownie Kebabs {4th of July Food}    These are the perfect little treat for the 4th is healthy with a little chocolate fix :)

2. This shirt is simple and cute for a busy toddler. Grayson will be sporting this Carter’s shirt today!

3. My good friend and co-worker, Julia, owns this dress. She looks ADORABLE in it, she wears it with a cute little belt. I think it would be perfect for a BBQ or watching fireworks. Pair it with some adorable red sandals like these or adorable wedges like these and you area set! PS. It’s her birthday today, so shout out to Julia, happy birthday my friend!! 🙂

4. If I was hosting a BBQ I think I would make these as they can be part of your table decor and they are edible! WIN!

M and M Sparklers

5. For an easy 4th of July craft  I think this would be fun and simple. At Grayson’s daycare they actually took his foot and dipped it into three colors and made his foot look like a firework on paper! Hat’s off to them for getting it JUST right. But I would have to go this route at home… 🙂

Easy 4th Of July Craft. would be cute to do on a t-shirt

6. Finally, for those of you that are 21 and older…a nice 4th of July drink might be just what you need. 🙂

Imagine Design » Red White and Blue Sangria Drink Recipe AND GUESS WHAT i can make it cause i will FINALLY Be 21!!! whoooo

That’s it! A quick round up of some of my favorite 4th of July items floating around the web. I hope you all enjoy your 4th and thank you to all the brave men and women who are currently serving and who have served. I am so THANKFUL for each and every one of you!!




Sunday Coffee

**Our son has turned us into lepers (that or we just have way to many preggo friends ;))….let me explain. A couple weeks ago we planned a BBQ with some friends, one of which is pregnant and the other with a 4 month old. Well, two days before we were to have everyone over chicken pox was in Grayson’s daycare…I didn’t think too much of it but I did call and ask his Pediatrician about it and to tell him about the pregnant friend coming over and the 4 month old. Apparently, being exposed to chicken pox while pregnant can cause MAJOR issues to the fetus. So to be safe we cancelled. Then this weekend we were supposed to go to another friends baby shower….well now Grayson has been exposed to hand, foot and mouth….again didn’t think much of it but apparently a no, no again to be around a pregnant lady and a bunch of other kids. SO we stayed home. I’m sorry friends!!! I hope to see you all say in about two years! 😉

**All jokes aside, I’m so glad I called my doc and had my friends call their OB. Luckily, Grayson never did get chicken pox and two weeks ago he got his vaccine for it…so hopefully we dodged that bullet. I’m still wondering about hand, foot and mouth. I know how contagious that can be and Grayson has been off this week….so let’s hope it’s just teething or a cold and he dodges that bullet too!

**Do your kids go to daycare? All I know is this kid better not miss ANY days of school! 😉

**I never thought I’d learn so much by having a boy…I mean aside from the new parent type stuff. I’m talking like educational…I can’t tell you how much I’ve learned about trucks, dinosaurs and reptiles lately. Grayson LOVES reading and he LOVES reading the same books over and over. So far we are stuck on one all about trucks…So I know all about giant excavators, different kinds of tractors and how to build a road. 🙂 I’m learning so much!

**As I mentioned earlier I know several people that are pregnant right now. I know 3 people that have the same due date!!! Needless, to say we will be busy the next couple months with showers galore. I’m so excited for them all! One friend is having a baby girl, another is having a boy and another doesn’t know!!! All this new baby talks make me a little baby feverish….. 😉

**Do you have big 4th of July plans? I have this Thursday and Friday off which I’m PUMPED about. We will go to a carnival for a bit and there is a free eye screening for little ones I want to try and hit up then a BBQ. Should be a nice time!

Well, I’m off to enjoy my Sunday. I hope you all have a wonderful week!!


15 months…and then some…

I thought it would be fun to do an update on Grayson. I used to do the monthly posts until he hit a year. Actually, I think the last one was 11 months…anyways  he has changed so much in just a few months I thought I’d share some of his updates.

Grayson is actually 15.5 months…he will be 16 months on July 4th. He started walking a few days shy of his first birthday but only a few steps here and there. Then about a week or two after he turned one he started really walking…now at 15 months he is FLYING. He is running everywhere!!! And boy does this kid have an attitude…he knows what he wants and usually wants it 5 seconds ago. 😉

First, some stats….

Weight: 26 lbs (91st percentile)

Length: 30 inches (10th percentile)

Clothing size: 18-24 months and I have some 2T. It’s all a little big on him but I feel like the 18 month is just getting too tight. This way he can grow into the 2T stuff for longer.

Shoe size: 5…I struggle a lot with shoes. I feel like the 6 is WAY to big but I feel like on a lot of brands the 5 is too small. It really depends on the shoe. And can someone please tell me why kids shoes have to be $20 or more? I mean, even at Target I’m finding the shoes to be around $22.

Teeth: Ugh..this poor kid seems to teeth FOREVER. I feel like I hear all the time from other mom’s “Oh my child was fussy for maybe a day or two is all then what do ya know over night one just popped out!” Not in our house! The kid drools, fusses, holds his cheek etc for what seems like WEEKS! I feel so bad for him! So he has 7 teeth I believe…I THINK/HOPE/PRAY he is working on his molars and they will come in any day.

Talking: Grayson can say mama, dada, nana (banana), doggie….he usually says them if we ask him to he “talks” a lot but it’s still just babble. He has started saying some animal sounds too. He can point to almost all his major body parts if asked…head, eyes, arms, hands etc.


LOVES being outside. We are outside A LOT so we apply lots and lots of sunscreen and wear a hat all the time. This is the sunscreen we use and love, it is a little rough to rub in well but it gets the job done.

Singing “I’m bringing home a bumblebee.” Please tell me you know this song? I feel kinda bad singing it but we sang it in Elementary and I’m not scarred! He is so stinking cute he does the actions with us. So doesn’t really sing but loves when we sing! 🙂

Speaking of singing…he loves dancing. I can sing anything..what I’m doing, a book, humming whatever and this kid will drop everything and dance! I think he has Curt’s musical side because it seems he can actually dance to my off beat tunes!

Looking at animals. He LOVES looking at animal books, seeing animals on TV, seeing animals outside…birds, squirrels, chipmunks you name it he will find it and point and grunt. 😉

Still loves being chased.

Still loves reading. I hope this never changes.

Loves going to the Public Library.


Hates being told no, or being re-directed to something else. He has learned to throw the best fit. We usually just keep re-directing him and ignore his tantrums and let him have them.

Hates getting clothes on/changing clothes etc. I’m literally sweating in my nice work clothes when I finally get him dressed. It’s like a freaking work out. Haha, he is just too busy to sit still for me!

Hates putting his shoes on. Now we have these tie shoes (WORST IDEA EVER). I need to get new ones but I have A LOT of trouble finding good shoes for this kid, so when I do I jump at it. These tie shoes are doing the job now but I’m not gonna lie, it’s a bitch to get them on him.

That’s about it for dislikes! 🙂 He is just a normal, active 1.5 year old…with mood swings every 2 seconds. Haha.

Grayson is right on track and it’s so fun to see him grow and experience new things…which to him is EVERYTHING. I feel like a broken record as I always say that but it’s so true. To have a small child to watch him explore something as simple as tupperware, or dirt, or trees, or socks is so exciting. One thing that Curt and I did when Grayson was born is created an email address for him. We write emails whenever we feel like it and when he is 18 we will give him the address and the password. I know it’s a tradition we will do with all our kids! It’s the perfect medium to share our thoughts/pictures/development etc. of what is going on right now. I really think/hope he will love reading through them all! So that’s his 15 month and then some update!!

And now a few pictures of the last month or so.

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday!!!

Do you have fun weekend plans? We are having a family reunion and I’m hoping to run to the downtown Farmer’s Market to get some GF Cinnamon Rolls. I would also like to try to take Grayson to the pool or a splash pad on Sunday! So we will stay pretty busy! Whatever you do, enjoy! And enjoy some of my Favorites from around the web!!

1. If I had a little girl she would wear these headbands

2. If you live in the DSM area and eat GF you need to check out Sweet Treat Without Wheat. They have fantastic donuts, cinnamon rolls, cookies, crepes, AND so much more!!! I usually get their cinnamon rolls and freeze them, they reheat great!

3. This necklace. I’m usually not a gold fan but I love this, and I love that I could add pieces with each child.

Little gold bars bear the initials that mean the most.

4. Gallery Walls….I’m thinking of putting one together in our dining/kitchen. I’m usually one to go with the same frames, same decor etc. But I’m loving the look of a variety of colors and textures…like this.

Love the combo of canvas/frames/phrases/fabric

5. I’m thinking the next Aucutt Reno project will be the Master Bath…right now there is carpet in there…CARPET!! EW! I do not understand carpet in a bathroom or kitchen. I’m sorry, I just don’t! Anyways….I love this idea for above the toilet. Looks like an easy DIY project!

DIY bathroom makeover with an over the toilet storage unit repurposed from an old picture frame.

6. Finally….as you know we just moved a couple months ago. We have super nice neighbors and most of our neighbors seem to be sticking around for a bit…BUT if we ever get new neighbors I think this will be the “Welcome to the neighborhood,” gift. Such a cute, cheap, simple and thoughtful gift!

Welcome to the neighborhood gift. Mason jar, dish soap, scrubber, dish towel, & sponges.

Enjoy your Friday friends!

Sunday Coffee

**Happy Father’s Day to all you dad’s out there! I am blessed with an amazing father, an amazing father-in-law and an amazing father to my child. I am one lucky lady to be surrounded by wonderful men!!! I hope you all enjoy your day!

**So because it’s Father’s Day, does that mean my 15 month old gets to get up at 5am while my hubby sleeps? 😉 Yes, my child has been getting up WAY to early!!! We have tried everything from pushing bedtime back to let him just hang out and cry. However, today I did let him cry for about 10 minutes and he FINALLY laid down, found a paci and went back to sleep!!! WOOHOO!! BUT, could I fall back asleep? Nope!!!

**We won a tri-family membership to three awesome places in the Des Moines area last Christmas. One of those is the zoo. We have been three times in the last three weeks or so! It’s great, we get in for free and Grayson LOVES it. It’s the perfect size for anyone under the age of 10. When our pass expires I think we will end up for sure getting at least a year membership to the zoo.

**Curt and I went out to a movie last night. it was the first time since seeing Catching Fire in December!! WHAT?! We went to see Neighbors. It wasn’t bad, I give it 3 out of 5 stars and Curt gave it 2.5. If you are new parents or parents to little ones I think you would find it relate-able and funny. Otherwise, I wouldn’t recommend it.

**We are almost done with our kitchen reno!! Curt just needs to put some minor touches together and I need to finish an item or too and I will share pictures. It turned out amazing and I can credit ALL of it to my awesome hubby!

**Grayson made the cutest gift for Curt for Father’s Day at daycare. It’s a cute picture frame with the CUTEST photo of him and a cute little card. Grayson was so proud to show it to his dad (see below). So glad my daycare is so awesome with stuff like that.


**I feel like I had some mom fails this week in regards to Father’s Day. I tried to make a garden stone for Curt with Grayson…that was a DISASTER. Between Grayson dumping 4 cups of water on our treadmill to him trying to grab the cement stuff before it was ready to dumping it in the yard. It didn’t pan out. Then I tried to make french toast this morning (usually Curt makes it) and one of Curt’s wasn’t fully cooked! AHHH!! Good thing I have a loving and understanding husband. 😉 I’ll stick to pancakes….and we will re-do the garden stone today as a family. That’s our plan!

Whatever you and do I hope you all have a wonderful day!!


TMNT, or otherwise Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles…. (and yes I did have to Google that to make sure it was right, I have a lot to learn!)

I better get it used to it right now…lots and lots of boy things. Not that TMNT or playing in the dirt are strictly boy things but it’s also not painting nails or putting on make-up. 😉 That’s ok. My little baby is turning into a little boy right before my very eyes. From playing in the sandbox, to eating the sand, to picking up sticks, to playing in dirt to riding his TMNT bike. Our little guy is on the move.  I miss the cuddly baby and the newborn smells but love seeing him explore this world of ours and try new things. He is on the go ALL.THE.TIME. The only moment of rest we get is during nap time and bed time, but even then we are doing things around the house. He is an energetic, active little boy and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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A working mom….

I was recently asked how I know was feeling with daycare and being a working mom now that it’s been EXACTLY a year (he started on May 28th 2013, a day before my 27th birthday) that Grayson has been in daycare. He didn’t start daycare until he was just shy of 3 months old, as I was very fortunate to enjoy 12 weeks of blissful maternity leave. It’s no secret (or maybe it is on here) that I had/have a hard time adjusting to the fact that he goes to daycare for about 9 hours a day. I work 7.5 hours but when you factor in drop off and pick up he is there from 7:15 to about 4:15 five days a week, that’s 45 hours a week that someone else is with my child. I’m not going into the reasons as to why he goes to daycare and I work, it’s just something that we need for our family right now. It is what it is, is my motto. So has it gotten easier? What do I think? How am I adjusting now? How is he? So many questions with not so easy answers. So before I answer the BIG questions on how I’m doing…a few comments/issues on what I have experienced in society the past year….the following are thing that I have encountered either through social media, in person etc. I don’t think people think about what they are saying or how it will affect me it’s their opinion but these are my opinions and thoughts. Please do not take offense.

  1. I absolutely hate it when people say things like it must have gotten easier, or don’t worry it will get easier. It never gets easier….it just IS. You deal with it. YOU learn to live it and adjust.
  2. Another comment that I have received from a variety of people is “I would hate to have someone else raise my children….or I don’t get how people would rather have other’s raise their own children.” I’ve gotten this even in a passing conversation where I don’t think the person meant it to infuriate me. Do I think the daycare workers are “raising” my child?? NO! Do I think they have a part in his life… YES! But in the end Curt and I are the ones that set the rules, we are the ones the get him up, put him to bed, play with him, feed him, clothe him, bathe him, set limits etc. We decide about vaccinations, we decide what he will eat, we decide! WE are RAISING HIM.
  3. Or some comments about working mom’s vs SAHM mom’s vs single moms etc. The big MOMMY WARS on what is better for your child. I do not want this to turn into an argument so all I will say on this matter is that I think every parent/caregiver out there is trying to do what’s best for your child and what works for your family.  It’s a hard, hard job but a very rewarding job. What you choose to do in the manner of raising your child is up to you as long as they are healthy, happy and safe I think you are doing a great job!  PEOPLE…. life is hard, parenting is hard, we judge ourselves so much already that we don’t need other’s judging us all the time too! Let’s respect each other and what we do (as long as it’s good things and not hurting your child or others).

So now that I’ve said that piece…to the matter at hand. How has it been going?? I would say to the innocent person that asks…fine. It’s going fine. This is our life and it’s working. The older Grayson gets the more and more I get to see just how daycare is affecting him. I think he LOVES it. I think he loves seeing all his little friends every day. I think he is so stimulated there. Much more stimulated then I am on the weekends ha! They are so structured at this daycare and I love it. When I drop him off he smiles and reaches for his friends. He hugs them and kisses them, he is learning to share and play and be patient. It’s fun to see him learn and grow and play in another environment then our own house. Now, he does have a little stranger danger/separation anxiety but not to the point and it has been hard to drop him off when he cries…but it doesn’t last long and he is soon running around playing with his friends. Seeing him grow and have fun makes me feel better. My work helps a lot, it’s a very flexible position and they really understand a good work/life balance and I SO appreciative of that as I know I’m very lucky. My husband has been so supportive and patient with me adjusting to this new way of life too. We make it work and our child is happy, healthy and growing. We have a house, two great jobs, we can provide healthy organic meals, we have health insurance…we are indeed lucky. So almost a year to the day since he has started daycare and I’m surviving. 🙂

And just because….here are some pictures of him at daycare a few weeks back.

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Coming soon: 5 things I love about Daycare and 5 things I hate about Daycare.