35 More Days of Summer | #summerbucketlist

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There is officially a few more weeks before Summer turns into Fall. While we are in the midst of trying to get ready to move I can’t help but think about trying to fit in a few more fun things before the summer is officially over and the rainy season starts here in Oregon.

So I reviewed our bucket list and we have actually accomplished most of the items on it.

Visit a new park or playground. CHECK.

Visit a new park or playground. CHECK.

Go for a bike ride. CHECK.

Go for a bike ride. CHECK.

Enjoy a big bowl or cone of ice cream. CHECK.

Enjoy a big bowl or cone of ice cream. CHECK.

…but we still have a few things to cross off such as:

Attend an outdoor music event.

Attend an outdoor movie.

Make popsicles and enjoy them outside.

Have a lemonade stand.

Stay up late and lay under the stars. – 8/27 perfect day for this 

Go for a train ride.

Feed the ducks/geese at the pond.

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What is/was on your bucket list for the summer? How many have you accomplished? Any musts before the summer is over? I think that attending an outdoor music event and going for a train ride are highest on our list. 

 

Happy Father’s Day Neil!

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Nei’s first Father’s Day (2013)

It’s crazy to think that this is the third Father’s day we are celebrating and the start of our third summer in Portland. While we are out enjoying some camping and family time I’d thought I would share with you just a few of the many reasons Neil is an amazing father.

He has the magic night time touch to calm Alder. I know it’s a strange one to start with but it’s currently a big thing this week. We are pass the days where just the boob calms and frankly I’m exhausted from being up all night nursing this past month so in comes Neil and his magic abilities to calm. This isn’t a new ability he had it with Edith as well and that is truly a special and magical (to me anyways) thing. This not only makes him an amazing father but partner as well because even on work nights he gets up and spends time calming and bouncing so I can sleep.

The Pumpkin Patch - aldercorn

He can multi-task.  It’s taken some practice but by the time Alder arrived Neil is able to eat and soothe a baby to sleep at the same time.

He is a fun playmate. I love how easily Neil can release his inner child and just play. He will run around, be silly, makeup stories, sing (off key) and just have fun. He inspires me to be more playful everyday.

He takes most of the poopy diapers on the weekends. Maybe this doesn’t make him so much an amazing father but an amazing husband. Thank you Neil.

Bridge to Brews - neil swing

He makes time for the kids morning and night. As soon as Neil wakes up he is making coffee (amazing partner points), reading books to the kids and playing even though sometimes (most times) this means scrambling to get ready for work. At night it’s the same thing he walks in the door, we eat and he is immediately in dad mode. He plays, reads, takes the kids to the park, or whatever they want to do until bedtime.

He has an unlimited supply of hugs and kisses. I mean what’s better than that? Even if some of those kisses are directed to feet or legs or backs (Edith has some odd requests sometimes).

Portland Area Parks - Dawson Park - Dada & Kids

He shares his food. Even when he is super hungry or it’s a special treat that he would love to keep all for himself he shares it anyways.

He shares his interests and embraces theirs. Neil has a love for all things coffee and he loves to share this with Edith – she even has her own pour over coffee maker. Edith and Neil (and I hope Alder one day as well) both have a love of running and you can find them out running together on the path or running a race together. But that’s not all, he also takes an interest in whatever the kids are into as well and sometimes their favorites become his as well – example Red Yarn.

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While I could go on I’ll stop there because I think you get the point – Neil is simply an amazing guy.

We love you Dada/Neil! 

 

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Schools out, suns is shining and the days are longer it must be Summer! For me Summer has always been about trying to get in as many outdoor activities as possible before the snow or rain, since we live in the Pacific Northwest now, comes and we are stuck inside. My family and I are packing our weeks with fun activities and making the most of the beautiful weather.  We have already had fun doing a number of these activities from camping to swimming and of course making s’mores.

Below is a list of 25 ways to have fun this summer and some might even call it a summer bucket list.

Visit a new park or playground. Summers are about trying new things so explore your town/city or a neighboring one to find the best park/playground around.

Go Swimming! Whether it’s the ocean, a lake, a pond, or a pool go take a cooling dip!

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Go camping! This is the perfect way to relax, unplug and enjoy some quality family time while getting back to nature.

Attend an outdoor music event. Most cities/towns host various music events at parks throughout the summer; this is a perfect event for families with children of all ages.

Have a picnic. What’s more fun then taking a meal outdoors? You can venture to a new park, find a spot near a lake or venture as far as your front yard.

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Go Berry Picking. BERRIES! One of the best parts of summer is the fresh fruit.  Kids of all ages love to pick their own berries. The trick is to see how many berries actually end up in your bucket to take home.

Enjoy a big bowl or cone of ice cream. Summer is a time for sweet cold treats. Head to your favorite ice cream shop and get a nice big bowl (or if you prefer cone) of ice cream to share (or not).

Attend an outdoor movie. There aren’t many times during the year that you can sit outside and enjoy a movie.  Check out if your town/city hosts any movies in the park or maybe you still live in an area that has as drive-in.  If neither of those options work why not set up a little outdoor “movie theater” in your backyard complete with pillows, blankets and your favorite movie treats.

Make popsicles and enjoy them outside. Get the kids in the kitchen and whip up a batch of popsicles. Once they are frozen head outside to enjoy them in the warm sunshine.

Hula Hoop. Yes give it a try! 

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Visit a museum. Explore a new museum or one you don’t frequent often.

Have a lemonade stand. Some people, myself included, would say that this is an essential part of summer and childhood. Make up a pitcher or two of lemonade, set up a little table out front of your home and start selling! 

Head to the library and join a summer reading program. Summer reading programs are a great way to keep kids reading.  Most programs are for birth through teens so mamas and papas with little ones can still participate. We just completed our first month of summer reading with Edith (2 years) and after 30 days of reading to her for 20+ minutes per day she was able to pick out a new book.  We are now onto doing a second 30-days!

Go for a bike ride. Grab the kids and get out for a bike ride. If your kids aren’t biking solo yet you can always go with a bike trailer or other seat. If investing in a bike trailer isn’t in your budget find a spot that does rentals! 

Attend or host a BBQ. Get together with friends and enjoy one of the perks of summer a big ol’BBQ!

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Go down the biggest slide at the park. I’m talking to you too parents!

Blow bubbles. Make your own bubbles or pick up a bottle of your favorite brand and spend the afternoon blowing, chasing and popping bubbles; easily hours of fun.

Create side walk art with chalk. Decorate your driveway or sidewalk with sidewalk chalk art.  This is fun for kids little and big (and adults too).

Stay up late and lay under the stars. Toss out the bedtime (for one night), grab some pillows and blankets and set up camp outside the stars. Take a look at the stars and the moon and try and find the big dipper.

25 Ways To Have Fun This Summer | #summerbucketlist

Go hiking. Lace up your hiking boots and explore the great outdoors. Find a hike that fits your skill level or maybe a nature walk is more your speed. Either way grab the kids and get outside!

Go for a train ride. Find a nearby train and take a ride.

Visit a Farmers Market. Take your little (or big) ones to a local farmers market. Explore the various fruits, veggies and other local goods.  Take a new fruit or vegetable home to try!

Make s’mores. One of the best parts of summer! Make them over the campfire or the grill at home.

Feed the ducks/geese at the pond. One of our favorite summer activities! Grab a few slices of bread and head to the duck pond to feed the ducks.

Kick a soccer ball around. Or maybe head out to a ballgame!

How many can you already cross off already? Which ones are on your list to to do this Summer?

The Dreaded Sleep Post

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I really thought that I would be able to get through these early months with Alder without blogging about his sleep because frankly the first 4.5 months were pretty amazing. I don’t know why it is but I only want to blog about sleep when we are going through a tough time but here we are. I tell you I am actually really surprised because from the moment Alder joined us Earth side he was a great sleeper. I mean he was up a few times at night to nurse but I would nurse and he would go back in his co-sleeper and just sleep. When it came to nap time he would just fall asleep on the couch or in his bouncy chair without me having to nurse him. There were actually a few times where I got myself already to nurse him because I knew he was tired and I look over and he is fast asleep. These days that’s just not the case.

During the day I used to put him down for his first nap upstairs. I’d lay down and nurse him to sleep and then get up and leave him on the bed. During his second nap I would nurse him downstairs because as many of you know we all share a room so during his second nap it is Edith’s nap time so he sleeps downstairs. Anyways I would nurse him to sleep and then he would either sleep next to me on the couch, in the bassinet or in the bouncy chair. These days I go through the same routine for morning nap but he doesn’t want me to leave. He will either wake up right when I start to get off the bed or he will wake up within 15 minutes of me leaving- which means the morning nap just isn’t really happening. As for the second nap he won’t let me put him down. I end up spending Edith’s entire nap with him in my arms and don’t get me wrong I love the snuggles but I also use nap time to get work things done and things around the house which means neither are happening right now.

As for evenings Alder usually stays downstairs with us while Edith goes to bed and again the problem is he has to sleep on one of us. Neil and I have actually taken to alternating “hands free” nights so that we can each have a chance to get things done in the evening. We have tried putting him down and he wakes right up and I have tired going upstairs with him and nursing him to sleep in bed but just like at nap time he wakes when I try to leave or within 15 minutes of me being gone.

Last night was terrible. I only slept from 3:30-7 and even that was interrupted by a nursing session. I tell you I’m exhausted and we are all out of coffee. I feel like we were here once before with Edith and I remember feeling exhausted but back then things were different. We only had one child to think about. With two and our sleeping arrangement (which won’t change right now because despite my complaining we love it) it makes it challenging to figure out this whole sleeping thing.

Okay venting done. Now any words of wisdom?

Hello Friends! | Quick Update

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Hello Friends! I know it’s been a bit since my last post but life is just kind of happening over and here and I haven’t very many free moments to sit down and write. That being said part of this “life just happening” is Neil and I working on some fun new projects including some surprises for Naturally Family.  The other part is a baby boy going through a growth spurt and developmental leap and a little lady who seems to also be going through both as well – talk about the perfect storm! I think we are at the tail end of Alder’s growth spurt (not the developmental leap though so babywearing to the rescue!) and I think Edith is finally coming back into a better place now. As part of Edith’s “fun” spurt period we have been dealing with a bout of sleep regression which results in some challenging days for all of us but (knock on wood) I think the worst is over!

Anyways that is where we are at so this week is all about getting the house back in order and life back on it’s semi-normal track. I’ll be back later this week with a new post but until then you can follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more realtime updates and tidbits.

 

xo. Lindsay.

Date Night In | Baseball

Baseball Date Night

Now I like baseball just fine but Neil is the baseball fanatic at our house so this date night is for him. Taking interest in your partners passions is sexy.

What you’ll need:

One. A baseball movie. On our list right now is 42.

Two. A great session beer to enjoy while viewing your baseball movie.

Three. Your baseball cap.

Four. A cute baseball top.

Five. A big bag of Cracker Jacks or your favorite stadium food.

*Affiliate links.

Date Night In | Cribbage & Coffee

Cribbage Date Night
Neil and I used to love to get out for coffee shop dates but since having a baby those are few and far between so now we have coffee dates at home either in the evening or during nap time on the weekends.
What you’ll need:
One. A snack that goes well with coffee; I recommend Biscoff cookies*.
Two. A great decaf coffee (you want to be able to go to sleep, right?)
Three and Four. A comfortable outfit; I recommend a sweatshirt and leggings.
Five. Your favorite thing to listen to* together.
*Affiliate links.

Date Night In | Roman Holiday

Roman Holiday Date
Put something cute and comfortable on, open a bottle of wine and sit down and enjoy a big plate of pasta and a classic film with your loved one.
What you’ll need:
One. Some really great pasta*.
Two. A bottle of Italian wine.
Three, Four & Five. A cute, comfortable outfit. This one features this top, this skirt and this scarf.
Six. Roman Holiday on dvd or Amazon prime*.
*Affiliate link.

Date Night In | Mad Men

Mad Men Date Night

Who say’s a date night in means you can’t get dressed up? Get dressed up, make yourselves a cocktail and cuddle on the couch and have a Mad men Marathon.

What you’ll need:

One. A copy of Mad Men; whatever season tickles your fancy.

Two. A Mad Men inspired cocktail – you can get a complete list here.

Three. A Mad Men inspired appetizer or dessert – checkout this vegan tapioca pudding.

Four. A cute Mad Men inspired dress- check out your local vintage store or online at Mod Cloth.