first birthday prep (or how to plan a frat party with babies)

in less than two months, s will be celebrating her first (and most badass?!) birthday. it’s equal parts exciting and depressing for us to plan. exciting because our baby is almost almost almost officially a toddler and we get to celebrate the wonderful ways she’s changed our lives over the past year. depressing because, as cool as we make this party, she won’t remember it.

so there will be booze.

obviously. because otherwise it’s just a silly afternoon where a bunch of parents wish they’d smuggled in their flasks of whiskey while their respective babies crawl and scream and cry and poop all over each other. just like every other day, really. just kidding. mostly. in all seriousness, i really want this party to be laid back and fun for kids and adults alike. so there will be beer. and tequila. if you know me, you know that one of my mantras in life is this: EVERYTHING is better with tequila. so there will be beer with tequila (desperados, anyone?!), cupcakes with tequila (for the grownups only, no need to call the authorities!), and, since i’m a little old fashioned, tequila with tequila.

**note: i am not an alcoholic. in fact, after approximately two drinks these days i am done for the night. so obviously most of this is a joke and does not affect the parenting of our beautiful child, who i’m sure will enjoy tequila just as much as me when she’s all grown up. and not before then. i’m sure she’ll be as innocent as a flower until her 21st birthday (please just let me live with this delusion for awhile).

and there will be cake.

we’re still ironing out details for this aspect of the party, but i found a fantastic local bakery two little cats that’s happy to provide a smash cake for s’s photo shoot (surprise! oops) as well as cupcakes for the party. i thought two smash cakes might be a bit extravagant (read: paul thought) so we will have to settle for adorable photos of s smashing a cupcake into her face during the party. on the menu for the cupcakes: raspberry and lime flavored with lime green sugar sprinklings and fresh raspberries on top. yum. as for the smash cake, i’m hoping it’s going to look like this fabulous cake above!

there will be decorations.

Source: hapykoi.com via Kaitlin on Pinterest


Source: indulgy.com via Kaitlin on Pinterest



i toyed with the idea of having a very hungry caterpillar theme for this party, but decided instead to go with bright colors and more basic decorations. i especially love the ideas from 100 layer cake!

and there will be presents.

Source: amazon.co.uk via Kaitlin on Pinterest





Source: amazon.co.uk via Kaitlin on Pinterest

since march is fairly close to christmas, and since my house already seems to be a toy factory, we’re planning on keeping gifts pretty minimal this year. what i would love for her to get, however, is a few musical instruments. she shakes and bashes all of her toys already and really enjoys rhyme time and music of all kinds, so i think she will really appreciate a few things like these.

and there will be s.

Source: rstyle.me via Kaitlin on Pinterest

everyone who knows me knows that i love a little bit of baby style. in fact, i’m kind of obsessed with pinning gorgeous dresses/tops/jeans/shoes/anything to my baby d board on pinterest. and i have absolutely no restraint when it comes to baby clothes. we had BETTER have a girl the next time around, otherwise there are going to be many lonely, depressed articles of clothes that haven’t been worn in s’s nursery. so here is my inspiration for baby birthday style. (ok, so it’s more than inspiration. i bought it today but shhhhhh! don’t tell paul! ps. i want EVERYTHING from the beatrix potter range at baby gap right now. check it out here.)

i’ll keep you updated as the plans progress!

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mama needs a camera!

hello my lovelies! i’m sorry it’s been awhile…we’ve been away for the last few days visiting family and are planning one more small trip for the weekend. after we’re back and settled into real life, i’ll update you all on life, i promise! also look out for a 10 month post for s. seriously, my baby is going to be 10 months old in a few days. where has the time gone?

in the meantime, i thought i’d plead with you all to help a girl out. i entered a competition the other week at UK retailer john lewis to win a Canon digital SLR camera with 4GB memory card and case by posting our adorable picture of s kissing the old year goodbye on new year’s eve. i miraculously made it into the top 10 photos for the competition! now all i have to do to win the competition is garner the most likes and repins of john lewis’ pin on Pinterest. now, you all know how obsessed i am with that website, and you all know how much i love john lewis. so i HAVE TO WIN. there’s some woman who has 239852735 likes and repins so it’s kind of unlikely, but if any of you can use your internet charms and wiles to get some likes and repins, now is the time to show me your stuff! here’s the link to the JL pinterest page:

 

please please please help me out if you can! the competition only goes until 5pm (UK time) tomorrow, so get pinning! love you all lots and talk soon!

it’s the most wonderful time of the year…for coughs and colds. also, i want to become a crafty(ier) mom.

so apparently colds last FOREVER. at least it feels that way right now. s has been nursing a very light case of the sniffles for the last few weeks and hasn’t really been that bothered about it. until this week. this week the floodgates opened and s’s whole face has been a ball of snot. poor thing. she’s still lovely and happy (most of the time…apparently colds make babies more liable to scream bloody murder when put down for a nap) but sounds like a chainsaw when she sleeps and can’t quite work out how to cough up the rattles in her chest.

she still manages to squeeze in her studies with a cold.

all of this lovely mucus in my life = tired mommy. for all of you lovely mommies out there currently thinking to yourselves, i have this parenting thing licked, easy peasy…you’re WRONG. you’re so massively wrong. i’ve finally decided to listen to all the wizened old mamas in my life who have always told me that as soon as you utter those silly words, your baby will find something else to completely mess up your sleep. i’m resigned to the fact that i will never regularly sleep through the night until my children are teenagers (if i’m not up waiting for them to come home past curfew…there might have been one or two members of my family responsible for doing that to my own mom a few times!) and so four hours in a row should be more than sufficient.

in other news, i’ve decided i need to get a hobby. preferably one that could make me money. now i’m not aspiring to be the next martha stewart, but a few wifey trades would serve me well. so i want to start sewing and doing other crafty things. the good news here is that this trade requires more shopping!!! so i officially want this for christmas (p are you listening?!) so that i can make adorable clothes, accessories, and decorations for s and our home. how freaking adorable are the baby accessories in this article?!?!? (not my baby, obviously.)

but don’t worry, i will still frequent the likes of fantastic shops like iviebaby (beware: once you click that link, you will want to buy everything in the whole entire etsy shop. also: look before you have your baby; there are some awesome ideas for kitting out baby’s room!).

date nights! or, i’m blogging and playing on pinterest while my husband watches gory films.

lately our little nighttime devil has become kind of an angel when it comes to going down at night. p gives her a bottle of expressed milk around seven and i pump, and we’re both usually finished before eight. it’s ALMOST as if we have our lives back! so this week we decided to go a little crazy with films…we’re thinking about exploring the world of lovefilm, and had a blockbuster voucher so have had a different movie every night. let’s just say it’s nice to feel back in the loop again after having to wait six months to watch the hunger games because it conveniently came out just after s was born. did i mention that before? sorry, i was a little pissed.

anyway, movie nights have been a really great way for p and i to spend a bit more time together. as you can tell by my current blogging, right? it’s not my fault, really i promise. he’s watching immortals (you know, the greek mythology bloodfest made by the same guys that did 300? me neither. i watched some guy get castrated and turned on the computer instead. ok so i made him watch one day the other night. let’s call it even.) and i’m catching up on the grownup world of facebook, online shopping, and pinterest. it actually feels really nice.

since we have only just come out of the newborn baby fog, we’re still fairly out of touch with civilization, so any suggestions for films/tv series/documentaries/etc. would be welcome! go crazy; we like anything and everything! ok, don’t get dirty, p IS a priest after all. 😉

pin of the day: loaded mashed potato cakes…if MODG approves then they’ve got to be good!

 

adorable photo (montage) of the day: crazy baby enjoying lemon. what?!

mmmmm lemon!

ok, now for your suggestions…go!!!

the summer according to pinterest.

i’d been thinking about writing up a sort of summer to-do list, or a bucket list, but hadn’t got the motivation to do it until the fabulous e tells tales suggested a blog link up. now i’m not nearly creative (or energetic, these days) enough to come up with lots of ideas off the cuff, so for this bucket list i will defer to the other lover in my life. yes, i mean pinterest. my sweet evening affairs with this website leave me feeling encouraged, excited and jealous of other people’s lives. but i have actually DIYed my way through a few of the things on my pinboards over the last few months, including making an adorable hand and footprint salt dough keepsake for p for father’s day (like this one here).

now onto this summer:

1. get my hair did.

a few years ago i went crazy and had my hair highlighted completely. i think it was an accident. but i LOVE the full head of highlights look, and want my hair this short again. if i was a millionaire i’d get a brazilian blow dry so it would be kind of straight right after blow drying, but for now i will have to dream. plus, then i’d miss my curls. also, i will allow someone to babysit s so this can happen…i got my hair cut when she was three weeks old, but it consisted of literally handing off the baby to p after he returned from his own appointment, running to the hairdressers, and getting a few inches chopped off. i want an afternoon of styling. maybe with a mani/pedi.

2. organize my life.

this site has about 139847165 ideas for baby/home organization. none of which i accomplished before s was born. now our house isn’t exactly a hoarder’s home, but it could be cleaner. and more organized. so i will do at least one of these things on this list.

3. fly to the states!

Source: youtube.com via Kaitlin on Pinterest

the tips and tricks from mama natural‘s video blog are going to come in handy when p, s and i all hop on a plane in august to see my family. i’m only freaking out about the trip a little, and most moms who’ve traveled with babies and toddlers say that the earlier you fly (in terms of baby’s age), the easier the trip will be. i just know i’m going to have to kill some bitches with kindness, though, as they give me the black look of death for bringing an infant on board an airplane. it’s ok, i will leave nappy bags full of s’s stinkiest poop underneath their seats.

4. (re)learn to knit.

can you get any more adorable than this? i’m sure it’s super easy and would take about five seconds to do. plus, if you know me, you know that flip flops/sandals/any kind of shoe that doesn’t require socks is the best kind of footwear. s isn’t going to be small enough for this to be cute for that long! my grandmother, who’s in her mid 80s and only has partial vision, is the most amazing artist when it comes to knitting and crochet. she’s tried to teach me how to knit half a dozen times (bless her), so one day i’d like to make her proud by actually learning something.

5. get my craft on.

this super cute shag rug will be perfect for the kitchen. it will also solve my problem of having far too many items of clothes. every time we get a charity bag through the letterbox, i fill it up and return it with tons of my junk. it seems to regenerate almost immediately, and makes me a little sad. now is the time to simplify my life ever so slightly and focus on what’s really important rather than getting sucked into the material things of life. (if you’re super duper brave, you could be like my friend awayathomemom and live out of an RV with your family. so cool!) there are approximately a million more craft ideas i have yet to try out on my pinterest boards…check them out.

6. go swimming with s!

luckily this one involves shopping for bathing suits. also, i mostly want to do this because of the photography session. p gets in the bath with s at the moment (TMI? sorry) and keeps saying, can i dunk her? can i dunk her? and so far i’ve said no because i’m scared she’ll drown and we’ll be the idiots that tried to make their own baby swim. so i’m going to let the professionals help! s loves bath time now and i think she will enjoy the pool, too. plus, i need to get back in the water!

7. bake some sexy cakes.

those of you who have already perused my pinterest boards probably have gathered that my bff and i have half-joked about starting up a cupcake business. no, not like two broke girls, i hate that show. more like ace of cakes meets starbucks flavors meets english charm. it’s mostly a pipe dream, but if i ever win the lottery i will quit whatever semi-fulfilling job i have and open a cupcake shop. so to prepare myself i must get back in the kitchen and start baking. plus, p once told me that my gift for having our first child would be a kitchenaid mixer. i’m still waiting! (i’m sure it’s in the post. not.)

8. get picnicking.

after the disaster that was our last picnic-style outing (yes, i am a wussy mama) i am afraid i may instill the same neuroses in my daughter. so you heard it here first, everyone…i vow to spend more time outdoors with my family. i will lather up my baby with bug spray and sun screen (after six months, i think…before then i will keep her under a mosquito net and hide her from every ray of sun possible) and eat smores with my family. this i solemnly swear.

9. have a date night with p (and without s…sorry baby!)

my parents came to visit when s was five weeks old (they live across the ocean in the states) and tried to get us to go out to see the hunger games. i wasn’t ready to leave the baby and hadn’t tried pumping yet, and figured the logistics of organizing feeds around movie times would be too difficult…ok i was terrified of leaving s for more than five minutes. my mom told me that i’d be ready soon. a few weeks after she left, i sent her a text saying, you were right! i want a babysitter now! so p and i are already talking about date night ideas for our trip to the states. three weeks with my parents, grandparents, sisters, and aunt nearby = lots and lots and lots of babysitters! sorry, guys! s is lovely, i promise! and hopefully she’ll go the *&$@ to sleep for you.

10. lose the baby flab.

ok, so i know this photo doesn’t really coincide with the step. but having a positive body image and feeling good about myself includes losing my baby flab. i know that i’m beautiful, but i also want to feel healthy and sexy instead of lazy and glued to the sofa. even though i love me some big bang theory. so this summer i plan to find an evening zumba class, or vow to get up three times a week at six and walk/run (ok so i can’t run…yet. positive thinking!!!) to feel better about myself and to be a positive role model for s.

so that’s the list, for the most part! i’m sure our summer will consist of much more than this (and you’ll all hear about the lot, of course) but i’ll update you as these items get checked off! happy summer! ❤

becoming a stay at home mom

i’ve never been very good at being productive at home. at work, i was really productive all the time, and had no problem emptying bins, cleaning toilets, shutting down the bar, and generally tidying all day long. i was a damn hard worker, in fact. being at home was a different story. when i was pregnant, i had the perfect excuse for sitting on my bum all day long and not doing a damn thing. when s was born, i didn’t have much of a chance to do anything either…i was scared i’d break her if i stopped cuddling her, or that she would stop breathing when i put her down to do something else.

ok, so i still check that she’s breathing about every five minutes, but that’s miles better than every five seconds. i can even leave the bathroom to pee. sometimes. but the best development has been her increased independence. she loves to chill on the floor in her play gym, and can even amuse herself with her hands in the bouncer. so, no more slacker mommy. today i did three loads of laundry, washed and dried dishes, vacuumed and mopped the kitchen, gave s a bath after an explosive poo (yay, you know you wish you were me), and started to tidy up s’s room (which, instead of the gorgeous nursery we thought it would be when she was born has become a dumping ground for gifts, boxes, and general crap we don’t use anymore/yet). i even did this:

seriously, i need a hobby.

it’s all a lie

when i was pregnant, every mother in the world decided to impart their infinite baby wisdom to me. number one on the YOU MUST DO list was:

rest now! when baby comes, you will never ever ever sleep again!

i’m here to tell you they’re lying. that, or the after-effects of child rearing have made the details of early days seem fuzzy. because my days are full of a whole lot of nothing.

sure, i feed, change, play, cuddle and baby talk with s a million times a day, but in between there is tons of time for my brain to wither away with the help of television and the internet. so much so that i’ve started to think that the cast of teen mom are my bffs, the house i dream of on pinterest will someday be mine, and that the odds will ever be in my favor. (hunger games reference; if you haven’t read these books, you’re living under a rock. go now: )

i’m sure someday i will miss these nothing days, but for now this is all i can think about:

mmm, tequila.