Happy 4th of July!

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Wishing you a wonderful holiday weekend.  We’re excited to have Jon all to ourselves for three whole days with nothing on the calendar (except maybe some painting and potty training).

And snuggling Brady extra close.

He is not a fan of this holiday.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

dress – brass razoo // sandals – salt water

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New Zealand: Lake Taupo

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From Wellington, we drove four hours north to Lake Taupo.  Adelaide and I spent our days by the lake while Jon, my mom and brother in law took a day to hike an active volcano.

Good for them.

The sand around the lake was full of pumice stones, so while they looked like massive rocks, Adelaide could easily pick them up and throw them.  The pumice floated, so she’d make me go out and retrieve each piece so she could throw it again.

the baloney bug

the baloney bugv

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug We may have accidentally gotten ourselves locked into the upstairs portion of the house, while the guys were out hiking.

Luckily we had all the kids with us.

And it was time for happy hour.

While we were stuck upstairs baby Savannah was so close to rolling over, so we were huddled around her with our cameras out, cheering her on.  We turn around for one second and she rolls onto her belly with no one watching.

Poor second child.

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New Zealand: Wellington

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We went to one of the Wellington beaches (there are too many to count) the day after Jon arrived.  Adelaide was so excited and wouldn’t let him out of her sight.  When we left the house, the weather was perfect, and by the time we got to the beach it had gotten quite chilly.  The kids still had fun digging in the sand and having a picnic on the beach.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

Adelaide plopped herself down on a towel with a piece of sausage in her hand, and was just chomping away at it.

That kid.

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New Zealand: Playgrounds

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We went to some seriously incredible playgrounds while we were in New Zealand.  Adelaide is adventurous (to say the least) and is not afraid to climb high and swing fast.  I’d never seen some of the pieces of equipment, and we often found ourselves having even more fun than the kids.

While we were there Adelaide also found her sense of fashion.

Um, the socks and the shoes were all her.

The rainbow sunglasses were on rain or shine.

She also magically learned her colors while we were in New Zealand.  One day she just knew them.  Every single one.  She started trying to say her name for the first time, and magically poop potty trained herself.  Every single poo was in the toilet.

Then we got home and she was like “Nah, I’m good, just change my diaper.”

I’m letting her take the reins with potty training and have been trying not to push it.  We just started a rewards system when she goes on the potty, but so far she’d rather forfeit the rewards and go in her diaper.

Le sigh.

She is very opinionated about what she wears.  I definitely thought I would have more time to pick out her clothes, but now when I shop for her I find myself thinking, “Is this her style?  Is this something she’ll like?”

Basically if it’s pink and has a heart on it, she’ll like it.

She’s incredibly opinionated about her shoes, often times shoving her foot in a shoe she’s long since outgrown.  Last week she found a pair of shoes that I bought on sale at the end of the season, still too big for her feet, but insisted on wearing them.  By the end of the hour she had red marks on her feet from where they were rubbing, but she still insisted on wearing them.  Luckily I had planned ahead and brought her comfy shoes to switch into, which she finally and reluctantly agreed to wear.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

I joke that our very opinionated child is the classic first born.

And classic only child.

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New Zealand: Wellington Botanic Garden

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In February Adelaide, my mom and I boarded a plane for New Zealand.  And then we boarded two more.  Twenty four hours, a trip across the International Dateline and into the Southern Hemisphere, and viola!  We were there.

The longest of our 3 flights (13 hours between LA and Auckland) was surprisingly easy.  It left about midnight our time, and by that time Adelaide was exhausted.  She fell asleep soon after we took off and woke up a good 9 hours later.

We were in NZ the entire month, strategically planning to spend the coldest month here during the warmest month there.

And hot damn, it worked.  Do you know how much snow the East Coast got??  I was not sad to miss that.

Jon was able to join us for the last two weeks of the trip, and we were just a tiny bit glad to see him.

My sister now has two daughters, Siena who (at the time) was 2.5 years and Savannah who was 4 months.  Adelaide was straight up smitten by her cousins.  She idolized Siena and adored Savannah.  Savannah was the first baby Adelaide’s ever really been around, and she couldn’t get enough.

She wanted to “hold” Savannah, give her kisses, hug her (um, crush her), touch her toes, help put on her shoes, give her toys.  She loved the baby.  She couldn’t say Savannah, so she would scream “BABY” in her face.

Over.

And over.

Even now, months later, when Adelaide is upset and nothing will calm her, I’ll ask her if she wants to see a video of Siena and Savannah, and instantly she’s agreeable.  I just love how she loves them.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

Is that a mom who has everything under control, or what?  I was so impressed with how Merridith seemed to seamlessly transition from one kid to two.  I know it didn’t happen quite like that, but she made it look easy.

She had a fun play date or story time or adventure planned for us every day.

And got us back in time for nap.

On the one day we were cutting it close and Adelaide was falling asleep in the car, Merridith managed to keep her awake until we got home.  Even I had given up on nap that day, so I was certainly thankful for my supermom sister saving the day.
the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug We certainly aren’t close geographically, but I’m so glad for technology keeping us close.  That Adelaide gets to see and talk to her cousins, share milestones and birthday celebrations.

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Disney

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I’ve obviously been a little bit MIA from the blog world for a while (um, months?) and honestly just keep it alive because it’s the easiest way for me to document our lives for myself and my family.  Jon edits all the photos that get posted here, and he’s been swamped.

We took this trip to Disney over Thanksgiving weekend.  It was literally 2 days after we signed the contract on our house, so in the midst of a trip to Disney we were getting approved for a mortgage, having the house property surveyed, etc etc.  A little bit stressful.

Then you know, we bought a house, moved into a house and spend every spare second tending to said house.  Oh and a toddler.  And dog.

Now that it’s summer, ohmygod, the gardens.  They’re gorgeous but I have no idea what the heck I’m doing.  I’m constantly googling and youtubing and texting my mom questions.

Jon’s also been traveling more than ever.  He’s been gone more weeks and weekends than he’s been home.  So now that we’re on a little vacation we can finally catch up on pictures… of other vacations.

While in Orlando, our friends Matt and Jessica hosted us.  They had recently moved from New York to Orlando and were amazing hosts.  Over our long weekend they took us to Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom.

We started letting Adelaide watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse a few weeks before our trip to get her excited.  Our main goal for the trip was to meet Minnie, which we accomplished on our last day there.  We met Donald first, and she was TERRIFIED of him.  Then we worked our way up to meeting Goofy and Daisy and finally Minnie.  She was tentative, but excited.
the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

She would have spent all day in the “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” playground if she could.  I remember playing in that same park as a kid.  Ah, memories.

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the baloney bug With Uncle Matt looking at the monkeys at Animal Kingdom.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

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the baloney bug

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the baloney bug

the baloney bug Um, can you tell from my hair that it was just a little bit humid?

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

hugs for Daisy

the baloney bug

Thanks so much to our friends for being such amazing hosts.  I’ll be back to the blog in hopefully less than six months with my next post.

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What I’ve Learned, So Far

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This whole parenting thing is an ever evolving, ever changing job.  I feel like I’ve got it down pretty well on Monday, and by Tuesday everything’s up in the air again.  I am constantly learning, constantly listening and asking for opinions.

I had decided that I wasn’t going to be that mom that gave into tantrums over the color of a sippy cup.  If she didn’t want the pink one, tough.

Then I read an article how toddlers have so little control over their lives, that sometimes the color of a sippy cup really is that important.

So I started giving Adelaide choices.  Did she want the pink sippy cup or the purple.  The striped diaper or the one with the cherries?  (She chooses the one with the cherries, every time.)

I started to pay attention to what was important to her.

It might seem silly or trivial to me, but it matters to her.

So it matters to me.

And all of the sudden, the tantrums lessened.  When she gets upset, I get down to her level, and I try to understand her.

She is after all, my best friend.

The funniest person I know.

Doesn’t she deserve my listening ear?

So that’s where we’re at.  You can find us debating sippy cup colors and shoes and toothbrushes.

It might not look exactly like I thought it would, and that’s okay.

I’m so thankful for my sweet girl always reminding me that I don’t have it all figured out.

And that’s okay.

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Happy 2nd Birthday, Adelaide!

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA I can’t believe a whole year has gone by since we celebrated your first birthday.

Two years since I sat in that hospital room, staring down in disbelief at the precious child in my arms.

That she was mine.

That you were mine.

You’ve changed so much in the last year.  Heck, in the last month.  All of the sudden you were speaking in sentences and knew all of your colors.  You started saying your name (although you put an L in front of it, so it sounds more like “Ladelaide”).

Your dad and I are amazed at how much of a girly girl you are.  You started requesting to wear hair bows, so I had to go out and buy you some.  You insist on wearing dresses and don’t even get me started on shoes.  You know which ones you want, and no others will do.  So help me if I try to convince you that mary janes are in fact, not practical, for the beach.

You quickly determined that purple is your favorite color, and if there is a purple option, that is what you must have.

You’ve been to seven countries (and both hemispheres) and you travel like a champ.

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

You are silly and smart and I am so lucky to be your mama.  Happy 2nd birthday, my love.

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Home Sweet Home

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I posted on Instagram last night that we bought a house, so here’s the story of how we went from not looking to buy to homeowners in 6 weeks:

Jon and I had always had moving to Long Island in our plans for the future.  After I left my job, we really didn’t have a reason to be living in the city (besides of course, loving the city).  Jon has worked in Long Island for almost 7 years, making the reverse commute out of the city every day.  We were also paying city taxes and of course living in a one bedroom apartment and dealing with street parking (our car has been hit while parked so many times that I’ve lost count) and walking the dog in sub-zero temperatures, many times with toddler in tow.  While we were planning to move, we weren’t looking to buy.

We were planning to rent.  Home prices out here are sky high and so we just never even thought about buying.  We would check Craig’s List pretty regularly looking for rentals.  We wanted to rent something that was dog friendly with a yard, 2 bedrooms and close to Jon’s office.  The pickings were slim.

Then one Sunday afternoon I was scrolling through Facebook and saw an ad that the Property Brothers were coming to the New York area and looking for applicants.  Without even telling Jon, I decided to apply.

(For anyone who isn’t obsessed with HGTV like myself, Property Brothers is a show where the brothers help find you a fixer upper and then renovate it into your dream home.  Spoiler alert: they didn’t call us back.)

So here I am, applying for the show and it asks if you’re interested in a particular home.  We of course weren’t, so I said no and tried to submit the application.  But the application couldn’t be submitted without the listing from a home of interest, so I literally did a super fast Google search for our budget and area and our house came up as one of the first homes.  I liked the street name, the house was in the perfect area, within our price range, in excellent condition but still needed some fixing up.  So I put it on the application and hit submit.

We went about the rest of our day, and then did Adelaide’s bedtime routine.  After she was down I looked at Jon and told him I couldn’t stop thinking about this house.  So he looked at it and agreed that he also loved it.

Then I called my mom and told her.  She always talks me down from my crazy plans, but she loved the idea as well.

Jon and I then decided we’d go see the house, and see if we liked it as much in person as we did online.  I emailed a realtor that a friend recommended and he got back to me that we could go see the house on Tuesday.

Tuesday we went to see the house without even being pre-approved by the bank (not recommended, ha).  We loved it.  Maybe even more in person than online.  It was built 60 years ago and the same owner has lived in it the entire time, taking excellent care of it.  You could really tell this home had been loved.

We got the bad news that someone else had just put in an offer, so there was competition.  Jon got the ball rolling on getting pre-approval with the bank and we submitted a full priced offer the next morning.  A painstaking 24 hours went by when we finally got the call that our offer had been accepted.

That weekend we did the home inspection, which came back much better than we had anticipated.  You never know with an older home, and we were pleasantly surprised that all of the issues that came up were really minor.

We were officially under contract the Monday after Thanksgiving and closed on the house on Tuesday, December 30th.

Six weeks exactly from the day we saw the house.

(Also my dad’s 60th birthday.  Happy Birthday, Dad!)

So we’ve spent the last 2 weeks packing and unpacking.  There’s not much to show at the moment because all the projects we’ve done haven’t necessarily been blog worthy.

I hope to share with you the transformation of the house as we go along.

That being said, what should our first big project be??

Thanks so much for all of the words of congratulations.  If you’re ever in the neighborhood, we’ve got room for visitors (and extra hammers).

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Merry Christmas

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the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

the baloney bug

Well, meeting Santa didn’t exactly go smoothly.  We’ve been talking about Santa for the last month, saying “ho ho ho” everytime we see his image and talking about how he brings us gifts.  We finally got out to Bloomingdales to see St. Nick over the weekend and Adelaide waited on line like a champ.  The second it was her turn she just lost it.  There was no way she was going to get close to that guy.

Not even a cookie would help.

We tried.  Better luck next year?

Let us always remember that He is the reason we gather to celebrate.  That the true gift does not come wrapped in a box or with a bow.  Wishing you all a lovely holiday surrounded by those that you love.

Merry Christmas.

(You can see last year’s Santa pictures here.)

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