Dear N: 5 Months Old

Norah 5 Months Old

Wow. 5 whole months have gone by. As I write this I am watching you giggle in your grandma’s arms as Molly pretends to eat your feet. You have the biggest smile on your face as you grab for your sisters hair and pull in delight as she continues to pretend to bite you and give you raspberries. And as I’ve said before, your entrance into this world and into our family has been seamless.

The amount of personality you have already is amazing. Just like your siblings, you’re a pretty awesome baby. Grandma Ann says you’re such a good baby, better than your siblings. You are so interested in what’s going on and what people are doing around you. Even when we’re around the animals you love to watch what they do. So curious!

Norah 5 Months Sitting Up

We’ve known you’re a strong baby. And by 4.5 months you were sitting by yourself unassisted. No, you can’t get to a sitting position on your own but you have amazing core strength that keeps you balanced. And with this new skill you’re able to have control over your hands when you play which opens new doors at playtime.

With this ability to sit up, we’ve also started to let you sit in the cart at the grocery store after you mastered sitting in a high chair at restaurants at 4 months. And… with your interest in food, and the fact that you’ve swiped a few things from your siblings, we’ve started offering you food when we eat.

So far you’ve had strawberries, green beans, mangos, carrots, avocado, sweet potatoes, bananas, cucumbers, bread, and graham crackers. Since we’re doing BLW you get big pieces of food that you can hold onto and enjoy on your own. You’re a pro. And it seems like you don’t have a preference for any one thing. You’re totally taking after your siblings.

Norah 5 Months Eating Strawberries

Playtime is getting more and more fun as you continually become more interested in what’s around you. We’ve busted out a few toys for you, mainly some wooden blocks, a hape shape sorter, and some hand-me-down toys from your cousin and one of your brother’s friends. But sometimes you get frustrated because you can’t move yourself forward yet. You’re getting good at backwards though!

This month you’ve done a LOT! You’ve been to Sea World, Knott’s Berry Farm, and the San Diego County Fair. Lots of animals, rides, people, and fun to keep you curious and busy watching everything and taking it in. Your personality draws strangers to you and many kids and adults like to stop when they see you to say hi or talk to you. You’ve made many a friend.

Norah 5 Months Old playing with Ethan

With all that you’ve accomplished this month, I know that the next will be full of firsts as well and I’m so excited to see you grow and develop. You’re an amazing girl who I love with all of my heart. You’re a joy. Pure joy. I love you.

Unofficial 5 Month Stats: 

18lbs (with clothes/diaper on)

5 Month Comparison

5 Month Comparison

Girls Night In Appetizers: Cheese Platter On A Stick Ideas

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SummerToGo #CollectiveBias The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.

Girls Night In Appetizers Cheese Platter On A Stick

Friendships are very important to me. Making time for my girlfriends is something I need to do to keep my sanity and with three kids that can get difficult. Especially when one of them is 5 months old and isn’t too good at taking a bottle. So in order to get my girl time in I often have friends come over for girls night in instead of girls night out. Sure, girls night out is fun, but girls night in is just as fun and can save me a little money too.

I love being able to come up with creative ways to make girls night in interesting. From My Favorite Things parties, to pairing afternoon kid snacks with wine, to prepping some appetizers in advance and popping open a box of Black Box wine, there are tons of ideas on making girls night in enjoyable.

Girls Night In Appetizers Black Box Wines to pair with appetizersCheese Platter On A Stick Ideas paired with Black Box Wines

This time I paired my love of cheese platters with an on-the-go solution to enjoying them easily whether we’re at my house, or having a girls night in at one of the other ladies houses. All I have to do is pack them up and grab a box of wine and we have a portable girls night. Easy peasy.

I grabbed a few things we had in the fridge and pantry and paired them with some cheeses and meats I’d normally serve on a cheese platter. The classic combo of flavors found in a caprese salad, some melon and prosciutto with provalone, and my favorite pizza toppings. Each trio pairs perfectly with either a glass of cabernet sauvignon or chardonnay.

Girls Night In Appetizers Cheese Platter On A Stick with fruitCaprese Cheese Platter On A Stick

Cheese Platter on a Stick Ideas

Caprese Salad

  • basil
  • tomato
  • mozzarella
  • sopressata

Melon and Proscutto

  • mint (optional)
  • cantalope ball
  • prosciutto

Salame and Olive

  • mozzarella
  • salame
  • black olive

Girls Night In Appetizers Cheese Platter On A Stick with Balsamic Glaze

The pairing possiblities are endless. Brie, apples, and figs; arugala, gorgonzola, and pear; etc. And each is a great way to bring out the various flavors in the wines we love.

Visit the Simple Entertaining Social Hub for more great entertaining ideas! Black Box has won over 50 Gold Medals for its quality, it’s available for 40% less than comparable bottled wines, and it stays fresh for up to 6 weeks. And don’t forget to enter the sweepstakes to win a trip to the California wine region of your choice. Did you know San Diego has some amazing wineries within driving distance?

What’s your favorite on-the-go appetizers for girls night?

Disney Baby Shower Games

From ‘Name that Disney Baby’ to ‘Find the Hidden Mickeys,’ this post will share fun games you can play at your next Disney-themed baby shower! Plus, all the printables you need! 

Disney Baby Shower Games

This is a sponsored post.

Our family is all about Disney. Movies, theme parks, and, of course, baby showers! With the addition of our newest little one came a fun celebration with family and friends. My good friend Kari of Keep It Simple Mama hosted a fun Disney themed baby shower and included some amazing baby shower games for all of us to play.

None of this ‘guess what’s in the diaper’ or ‘who can keep their legs crossed’ games. Not that there’s anything wrong with those. She chose some fun, creative, and interactive games for our guests to enjoy while at the shower.

Disney Baby Shower Games - Welcome SignDisney Baby Shower Games - Name Signs

In addition to the fun baby games she also created some unique and simple decor. By cutting out Mickeys with her Silhouette machine and overlaying some text on top, she was able to create an adorable welcome sign for baby Norah. Strung together with some ribbon and it was ready to hang.

She also created a fun focal piece for the mantel by grabbing some different sized frames, layering scrap paper, and adding flags to the top of the frames (they’re hot glued paper straws!) for some Disney-inspired artwork. Those frames can be repurposed in baby’s room for fun wall art!

Disney Baby Shower Games - Disney welcome sign


Disney Baby Shower Games

And now for the fun part! The games. Here’s a list of the games we played at the party (and some printables for you to use at yours):

  • Name That Disney Baby – we had to name the Disney baby photos AND the movies the Disney babies were in. Not as easy as you’d think! You can find the answer sheet here.
  • Find The Hidden Mickeys – disbursed throughout the house were cute little Hidden Mickeys for all to find. Simply print out two sheets and cut one set out to hide around the house.
  • Guess What’s In The Bag – head on over to Walmart and pick up some Disney Baby gear and accessories for a fun guessing game to figure out what essentials for baby are hidden in the diaper bag
  • Memory Tray Game – who remembers the tray game where you have a bunch of baby items and only have 30 seconds to glance and remember what’s on the tray? Do the same thing with Disney Baby products found at Walmart for a fun spin on a classic!
  • What’s In A Name? – using the letters of baby’s name, think of Disney inspired words to fill in. For example, the N in Norah is for Neverland and the O is for Olaf.

Disney Baby Shower Games - Name That Disney BabyDisney Baby Shower Games - Name That Disney Baby sheet

Each of the games were different from one another and some got the guests up and talking to each other to create ice breakers. Since we were at an event that brought different sides of the family together (mom’s side and dad’s side) as well as my friends, it was great to see the interaction between my guests.

Plus a few of the games then turned into a gift for the baby (the Memory Tray game and the ‘What’s in the diaper bag’ game). Finding decorations and games that can double as gifts is always something I look for when planning a baby shower or any party for that matter!

Disney Baby Shower Games - memory game

Disney Baby Shower Games - Hidden Mickey Scavenger HuntDisney Baby Shower Games - hidden mickeys around the houseDisney Baby Shower Games - hidden mickeys close up

What’s your favorite baby shower game?

Love this post? Here are some more great ideas: 

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My Baby Prefers To Be In My Arms And That’s OK

My Baby Prefers To Be In My Arms And That's OK

As my little one approaches 4 months I’ve started to get the questions. When will she sleep in her co-sleeper? Why are you allowing her to nap in your arms instead of her own? Aren’t you spoiling her?


She’s not being spoiled. She’s being loved. And she’s happy.


She sleeps!


I sleep!

I am not sure why but I’ve always felt as if co-sleeping was the best for my family. From the first night I brought my oldest home from the hospital, my babies have slept in my arms or right next to me. And my third is no different.

Sure I had grand plans of the kids sleeping in a crib. We set up a hand-me-down crib from my brother-in-law in the baby’s nursery with my first and my second. But this time around? I completely forgoed the crib. I didn’t want to waste the money (or the space) for a prop.

I did buy a co-sleeper though. Even though it’s mainly used as assurance that the baby won’t fall off the bed. Side note: She’s never fallen into the co-sleeper nor have my other two ever fallen off the bed as infants at night when I wasn’t using a co-sleeper. The older two have, however, fallen off the bed during the day at one point or another.

Why co sleep? What started out purely as a selfish way for me to get more sleep at night while breastfeeding has turned into a way of life for our family. My youngest stays in bed with us all night while the 4 and 6 year old make their way into our bed by the time we wake up most nights. And really the main reason why is that it works for our family.

My kids are happy, everyone in our small immediate family is OK with our situation, and we all sleep.

I’m also starting to read more articles pointing to the evolutionary reason behind co-sleeping and the benefits. Reading articles like these from people who have actually researched the subject make me feel a lot better about our choice. Knowing that I’m not alone in my belief that co-sleeping is natural gives me power in my response to those who try to scare me with stories of co-sleeping gone wrong.

I think the majority of people who have an issue with co-sleeping don’t realize that there are ways to safely co-sleep. And things have changed a LOT since many of them have had infants in their home. I also believe in respecting other’s opinions however I won’t let it sway what I do with my children. I simply listen to them voice their concern, politely nod and smile, and if a response is needed, I’ll let them know that we’ve researched the subject and feel that this is the best for our family.

Now if there came a time where my husband said he didn’t want to co-sleep anymore then we’d have a serious discussion. At least about the older two kids. But for now, since they only come into our bed in the wee hours of the night, there have been no complaints.

Sometimes I think about what it’d be like if I didn’t have to cuddle with a baby all night. Or get pushed to a small 6 inch space of bed for my more-than-6-inch body. And sometimes I dream of the day that I get my bed back and don’t have to share it with 3 little people.

But then I realize how little time we really have with them at this age. They won’t be in our bed forever. And then I’m ok with it again.

Do you co-sleep?

food spoils babies don't


Dear N: 4 Months Old

Norah 4 Months Old

Another month behind us and my have you grown! And not just in size. I cannot believe how quickly you are picking up on things and trying them out on your own. From vocalizing just about everywhere (the folks at Costco loved hearing you chat today) to trying to master sitting, you are a woman on the go!

Curious about anything and everything, you want to be front and center when people are around. And you always love when your siblings come to play with you morning, noon, and night. While I think they’re a bit smothering, you don’t seem to mind one bit.

I’m still amazed at how easy going you are. Go with the flow, able to adapt, and all with a smile on your face. You truly are a blessing to our family.

N 4 Months

I’m not the only one to think you’re a blessing. I see the way others react when you start chatting with them. Or share your smile with them. You light up the room and everyone knows you’re there. And even though you’ve been under the weather with a cold for a majority of this month, it’s not slowing you down!

I’m constantly getting comments about how alert you are. But you’ve been alert since day one. And? I’m fairly certain you’ll be moving any day now. From the way you can spin around in a circle when you’re on your tummy, to how you try and lift up your butt already when on the ground. We’re going to be in trouble soon.

Trying to Sit at 4 Months

You’re still a chart topper and your doctor was very pleased with where you are developmentally. While he gave the green light for food because of your development (he mentioned starting around 5-6 months but saying that you were ready now), we’ll be waiting a bit to really start. However we have been giving you small tastes here and there.

We’re so blessed to have such a healthy and happy baby and are so looking forward to this next month! Keep doing what you’re doing baby girl. We love you.

4 Month Stats:

17lbs 4oz – 98th percentile

26 1/2 inches – 97th percentile

44cm – 97th percentile

4 Month Comparison

4 Month Comparison

Using Disposables At Night

This post featuring why our family chose to use disposables at night is sponsored by Huggies.

Using Disposables At Night - why we made the decision

 After having my third child I thought things would go just like the other two. We’d continue to do all of the things that we did with the other two this time around. But every child truly is different and we’ve had to tweek some things here and there to create a new normal for our family of 5.

One of those tweeks is that we’ve chosen to use disposable diapers at night. Little Miss was just too much of a heavy wetter and I hated waking up soaked every night. She’d start out dry in her co-sleeper and then would end up soaked on me in the morning. No bueno.

cloth during day disposables at night baby girl

My old night time diapering solution just wasn’t cuting it and I needed a change.

After using disposable diapers on our trip to Seattle for SoFabU On The Road, my mind was made up. I was going to use disposables at night. (Need tips on staying in a hotel with an infant? Check out this post here!)

Since I am not very familiar with disposable diapers it was a bit of a learning curve to figure out what would work best with our baby. And after a few trial and errors we’ve found the perfect solution.

Fun Fact: I totally tried to put the diaper on backwards the first few times I used a disposable during my trip to Seattle. Oy! And? I had no clue how to tell if she was wet. My mom had to show me.

Huggies® Snug & Dry Ultra diapers at Walmart

We picked up a box of new Huggies® Snug & Dry Ultra Diapers, available exclusively at Walmart, because we heard that they lock away wetness better than other brands and provide up to 12 hours of long-lasting leakage protection. 

Since this little one likes her beauty rest (and co-sleeping makes it possible to quickly nurse to appease her appetite) keeping baby dry all night long gives me the confidence that I’m making a smart choice for my family.

cloth during day disposables at night with Huggies

5 Things To Know When Making The Switch

  1. Put the tab side down first. Don’t try and diaper your baby backwards like I did (unless they’re older and try to remove their diaper at night). 
  2. When checking to see if the diaper is wet, feel the front with your thumb and pointer finger. If it’s squishy, it’s wet. 
  3. Don’t worry about sizing up in PJs. Slimmer bum = wearing their true size in sleepers. 
  4. Size up! Especially if your baby is on the cusp of going to the next size, always size up. 
  5. Don’t try to stock up. Since you’re only using them at night, you only need 1-2 diapers a day (depending on how heavy of a wetter you have).

These might sound like “duh” things to think about but from a mama who’s only cloth diapered, I was truly clueless when making the switch.

Cloth during day disposables at night - no leaks

Instead of adding layers upon layers into my fitted cloth diapers that I used with the other two, I now just grab for a Huggies® Snug & Dry Ultra diaper as we go through our night time routine and I know that I won’t be frustrated when I wake up. 

A happy mama equals a happy baby! 

cloth during day disposables at night - Huggies stay dry

Share a Huggies #UltraHug and Win A Grant For Your Community

Give your baby an Ultra hug every time you diaper them in Huggies® Snug & Dry Ultra Diapers, and make someone else’s day better by sharing an #UltraHug. 

Share a selfie of you and baby on Twitter or Instagram and nominate a community project in need such as a local park, playground, or rec-center. Tag the post with #UltraHug and you may receive a $2,000 grant from Huggies for your community’s project!

You can post between now and June 25 to enter. Beginning July 6, Huggies will feature 20 of the nominated projects HERE. The top 10 will receive community project grants.

Did you do the same thing with all of your kids or did you change things up?

Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

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Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

A few weeks ago I headed to Seattle with my 2 month old for a conference and a few weeks before that we stayed in a hotel in Palm Springs for spring break. During both of these trips we stayed at a hotel and I picked up some great tips on staying in a hotel with a baby.

You really don’t have to pack everything and the kitchen sink when traveling with baby however you do need some essentials to make life easier. Things like diapers, wipes, etc can be purchased at your destination but other things are easier to bring along.

Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

1. Portable Toys

When travelling you don’t need to bring the whole playroom but a few essential toys are a must. We like to stick with a soft ball – the o-ball rattle is our baby’s favorite, soft books or board books, and something that moves (like this caterpillar).

2. A Waterproof Pad

Since you won’t have a changing station at the hotel, a waterproof pad you can use as your changing station helps a lot with diaper changes. No need to worry about baby leaving a little mess on the hotel bed or chair. And you can clean up any mess on the mat with a baby wipe (those things clean up ANYTHING!). 

3. Bottle and Accessories

I’ve found that most times I travel, I am not travelling alone with baby. And that means that sometimes mama needs a night out. Travelling wiht a good bottle, like the Joovy Boob, and accessories like the new Nood nippes and a bottle brush with some dishwashing liquid is needed for bottle feeding. Since I am breastfeeding I also like to take along a manual pump instead of lugging around my electric pump. 

The best thing about the Nood is that it mimics the feel of the breast and helps achieve a perfect latch just like on the boob. That way the transition from boob to Nood is a smooth one. 

4. Medicine

One thing I almost forgot was our medicine cabinet. I kid, I didn’t bring the whole medicine cabinet. Just a few essentials including infant acetaminophen, saline spray (for runny noses), a nose bulb (you could also pack a Nose Frida), gripe water and some diaper rash cream. All of this fit into a sandwich size zip top bag easy for pulling out at the airport. 

5. Inflatable Tub

Now you may only be staying overnight at a hotel one night but if you’re staying any longer, sometimes an inflatable tub for baby makes bathtime a LOT easier! We have packed along our small inflatable tub before and the kids love it. We also pack along one of their own hooded towels for after bathtime. They’re a lot softer than the hotel’s towels and work as dual purpose for the pool and tub.

What are your hotel must-haves when traveling with baby?


Dear N: 3 Months Old

Norah 3 Months Old

Oh my little nugget! You make our lives brighter every single day. From your cooing to the unending smiles and expressions you share with us, I couldn’t imagine not having you in our lives.

You are so fun to be with and love watching your brother and sister play around you. You also love when they give you hugs, kisses, and lots and lots of love (including a bit of petting and smothering). And you take it all in stride even if they go a little overboard in their afffection.

You’ve come to love your hands and I find them in your mouth just about 24/7. You’re also starting to use your hands to bring other things to your mouth like Daddy’s fingers, your toys, and your blanket and clothes. Anything you can chomp on is as good as soaked.



We recently got you two new things to help keep you entertained: the exersaucer doorway jumper to put outside so you can watch as I garden and take care of the chickens or when your sister and brother play outside, and the jumperoo (below) so you can stay happy and play as I make dinner before Daddy gets home or when I try to get a little extra work done when you’re awake.


Being the size of a 6 month old at 3 months really helps with this! You are holding up your head like a champ (tummy time isn’t a problem) and love practicing to sit. We call you our little weeble wobble.

And when we put you down on the ground for some playtime you manage to move your body in big circles on the blanket. You’re definitely learning to move and explore and we can’t wait to see what you explore and learn next.

We love you baby girl!!

Unofficial 3 Month Stats:

16lbs 8oz (with clothes/diaper on)

3 Month Comparison

Why I Love Prefolds For Newborns

Why I Love Prefolds For Newborns

We are back in the land of cloth diapering with our third baby and I’ve come to realize how much I love cloth diapering a newborn with prefolds. Not only is it one of the quickest option for me (no stuffing a pocket diaper or worrying about velcro sticking to another diaper with AIOs, I also find that prefolds tend to be better at containing newborn poo. And my newborn knows how to poo!

With the added layer of a cover, newborn diapering is so awesome with prefolds! I find that I have the least chance of being leaked on if we’ve used a prefold. Now I know that the newborn stage doesn’t last long but while it’s here I’m sure I’ll keep grabbing for the prefolds first when I reach into the diaper stash.  [Read more…]

How to Sell Cloth Diapers

How to Sell Cloth Diapers

So you’ve finally decided that you are done with cloth diapering. Your kid(s) are potty trained, you just don’t love cloth diapers like you thought you would, or you have some extra diapers that just didn’t work for you, ore are too small,  and are looking to make room in your stash.

Now how do you sell the cloth diapers you have to make a little more money back?

Since I started cloth diapering 6 years ago, I knew that one of the awesome reasons I cloth diapered was that I’d recoup some of the money I put into the diapers I purchased. Because I could sell my cloth diapers after I used them.

And now the time has come to destash. So I’ve compiled a few great ways to sell cloth diapers. Here are some ways to approach selling your diapers!

How to Sell Cloth Diapers

1. Go local –

Have any friends looking to cloth diaper? Try here first. That way you know that the diapers will get great use and you might be able to help out a friend looking into cloth diapering. Plus you can show them how to use all of the diapers, etc.

And if you don’t have any friends who need cloth diapers, try Craigslist. Take a few photos, post them online and save a bit on the hassle of shipping out the diapers.

Local resale shops also purchase cloth diapers to resell. And while they aren’t the best way to make the most money for your diapers, they are probably the easiest way to sell your diapers quickly.

2. Sell Within Your Community Online –

There are quite a few eco-friendly facebook groups online that allow their community to purchase and sell cloth diapers amongst one another. You simply upload photos of the diapers you have for sale, list the price, and ship to the buyer.

The best way to accept funds is probably paypal since it’s quick, easy, and you can print out a shipping label right on their site!

3. Sell On An Online Forum –

There are a few websites dedicated to helping you sell your cloth diapers. You simply list what you have for sale and can set up everything through the site, including payment and shipping.

A few of my favorites are:

Whatever way you choose to sell your diapers just remember to take great photos, be honest about the condition, and do a little research on the value of the diapers you have for sale.

Have you sold diapers before? What worked for you

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