Friday, July 3, 2015

Five on Friday

First off, I hope all my Canadian readers, friends, and family had a great Canada Day!  And for my American friends, are you ready for the holiday weekend?  I for one am very excited for a 3 day weekend!  We are hosting a super casual BBQ tomorrow with both my parents and in-laws.  Other than that, I just hope to spend some time at the pool!  Here's my Friday Five...

ONE

Good friends and a water table, what more can you ask for!  I'm so glad we kept the sand table as is and bought a small water table this summer.  Noah loves playing in the sand, but the water table is also well loved and comes in handy when we have "younger guests" come over to play.  I only wish it came with a cover so there wasn't as much clean up involved after a rain storm!

^^^ wearing red in honor of Canada Day!
water table

TWO

Chris rarely travels for work, but this week he went to Toronto.  I thought it was funny and weird that he was there for Canada Day!  They flew in on Tuesday for some meetings and then visited the stores on Wednesday (Canada Day).  I was shocked that the stores were open (growing up in Canada, stores weren't even open on Sundays!).  This was the FIRST time I've ever stayed alone in the house.  Last time Chris went away for work, my mom came and stayed with us.  I'm a big baby, so I'm glad Chris doesn't travel a lot for work!  Thankfully, we did great... but I was still relieved it was only one night. Not only did we FaceTime with Chris while he was gone, but we were sent numerous pictures and he brought a little souvenir home for Noah... a polar bear stuffed animal!


THREE

On Wednesday, I shared some patriotic crafts that I did with Noah.  My brother, so kindly reminded me that it was Canada Day and that we should be doing some Canada crafts too!  My mom came to the rescue, researched some ideas, picked up the supplies, and we got crafty after his nap.  It was a close one, but we made it just in time, and they came out super cute!



FOUR

I found some patriotic tattoos in Target about a month ago.  Noah has loved getting temporary tattoos at fairs, so I thought it would be fun to do some at home for the holiday.  They definitely weren't the highest quality.  His first two rubbed off way faster than I expected, and we had to put another two on just a few hours later.  But for the price and seasonality of it, I really don't care.  I think I might even put a few on tomorrow ;)


FIVE

And with that, we are off to enjoy our 4th of July weekend!  Hope you have a fun and safe weekend!

^^^ being all patriotic at music class :)

I'm linking up with The Farmer's Wife and September Farm for "Oh Hey Friday"!




I'm also linking up with April's blog for their Five on Friday!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Monthly Goals | July 2015

This year, instead of making resolutions for the year, I decided to make monthly goals instead.  I will be sharing five goals each month that I'd like to work on.   Each month I will also reflect on how I did with the previous month's goals.


July 2015 Goals

Keep one weekend free of plans
It's super easy to make tons of plans in the summer to the point that we never have a weekend to just relax.  While they are usually filled with fun activities, it's important to just do nothing every once in a while.  I want to be able to just go to the pool and hang out.  

Get an updated cousins photo
Noah's cousins will be visiting this month.  We have a ton of fun activities planned while they are here.  But I'd also like to wrangle them up and get a group shot of them.  It's so fun to watch them grow through the pictures.  

Go for family walks
Now that it's staying light longer, I'd love to make a family walk part of our nighttime routine.  Noah has been going to bed later, so I think it's totally doable after dinner.  

Lose a few pounds
Chris has lost quite a bit of weight and he's really inspired me to lose some weight as well.  My main problem in the summer months is all the ice cream!  I'd love to hear some of your go to healthy meals or snacks.  

Read at least 2 books
I ended up reading a lot of books last month and I really enjoyed it.  I want to keep up with this "new hobby".  Again, I'd love to hear some suggestions on what to read next :)



Go for walks in the morning before it gets too hot!
This month seemed to be either crazy hot or raining.  As a result, I did not do well at all with getting out for morning walks.  

Go on a date with just Chris
We had every intention of going to see Entourage this month.  And then Chris read that it didn't get great reviews, so we decided to hold off.  Instead, we are waiting until July to see the Amy Schumer movie, Trainwreck.  

Clean the garage and organize everything!  
Once again, we failed this month.  I feel like my "honey do" list is never ending and with our weekend plans, Chris barely has time to mow the lawn each week.  

Do a few Summer themed crafts with Noah
This is one of the few goals we actually completed this month.  We did the sun and the strawberry :)

Go through our holiday decor
While I did a lot of purging and organizing through the rest of the house, I did not get to the holiday decor.  Part of the reason is because the doors to the closet that the holiday decor is stored in are broken.  We hope to have our handyman come fix or replace them soon.  Maybe then I can get my act together.  

What are your goals this month?

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Patriotic Crafts | It's The Little Things

As you probably know, I love doing simple crafts with Noah.  This summer I've been trying to do one a week.  I find most of my ideas on Pinterest and then often make them even simpler.  With 4th of July this weekend, I made sure to do some patriotic crafts with Noah.  Bring on the red, white, and blue!

We love making "stained glass windows" using contact paper and tissue paper square.  I found a star template online and cut out a star from card stock.  I have so many different colors of tissue paper squares from past crafts, that I just had to pull out a handful of red, white, and blue.  The whole thing is so easy... I just lay the star onto the sticky contact paper and then let Noah stick the tissue paper all over it.  This time he was a little heavy handed and had multiple layers of tissue paper.  When he was all finished, I just put another piece of contact paper on top to seal it all together.  I then just taped it to our glass sliding door to enjoy :)








We also made a simple patriotic wreath using a paper plate and some sparkly star stickers I found at Michaels.  I was hoping to find more patriotic craft supplies and was disappointed with the lack of selection!  


^^^ I was surprised at how particular Noah was with his artistic vision.  Look at that face he gave Grandma when she suggested he put a few blue stars in between the red ones!  


And while it's not really a "craft", we did break out the red, white, and blue play-doh and used a star cookie cutter during our play-doh session :)  



Are you doing any patriotic crafts with your kids this year?  

As usual, I'm linking up with Jess for "It's the Little Things" link up!  

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Mama & Noah Currently

Instead of doing monthly updates with all of Noah's stats, I decided to share some things that we are into each month.  You can check out November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015, and May 2015.

This is what we've been up to in June 2015...


Wearing

sandals | water shoes

Watching


Pretty Little Liars | Paw Patrol

Reading


tons of books on my Kindle app | library books

Eating


greek yogurt | fruit snacks

Loving


trips for frozen yogurt | playing with his cars

What have you been up to this month???

Monday, June 29, 2015

Weekend Pictures

This weekend was interesting to say the least.  We ran errands, had a few visitors, and had some crazy  nighttime shenanigans.  I was bummed that our plans to go to Diggerland had to be postponed because of rain, but looking back it was for the best since Noah still had a runny nose and ended up having the weirdest Friday night!  

^^^ that's a yellow train painted on his face... in case you couldn't tell ;)

Friday night, Chris got home early and we headed to a kid event in town.  They had some music, face painting, and my friend/photographer was there documenting the whole thing.  Noah had fun until he found it too loud and got upset, so we left.  

Because of Noah's cold, he was taking super long (3.5 hours) naps Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday!  It got to the point that I had to wake him up when he was sleeping past 5 pm.  Knowing that Noah had a long and late nap, I didn't even try to get him to go to sleep until 9:30.  He watched his iPad like he normally does, but when I finally took it away, he was not happy and proceeded to cry (a lot more than he usually does).  He then wanted to go in my bed, then back to his bed, and then wanted to go down and play.  I refused and refused until I realized he was wide awake and not calming down at all.    Chris took him downstairs to play in the basement for a little while and he was so happy!  For all the times that Noah wakes up, he NEVER asks to play.  He just wants someone to be with him when he sleeps.  Needless to say, I did not expect Noah to be "partying" at midnight!


Despite his late night with daddy, Noah was up and ready to play before 8 am!  I spent the morning purging some of Noah's toys and books.  I'm happy to say that we donated 3 bags of toys and 3 bags of clothes to the Big Brothers and Big Sisters.  We then headed out to do a ton of errands... Target, Home Depot, Costco, and Michaels.  I was relieved to have Chris with me since we needed 2 carts in Target!  Noah did surprisingly well, so we made sure to stop for a Happy Meal and ice cream cone before heading home for nap.


Thankfully, Noah slept for 2 1/2 hours without me having to wake him.  Just long enough to be rested without messing up his bedtime (too much).  Since it was still raining, we spent the rest of the afternoon playing and watching Paw Patrol.   Noah did ask to go downstairs once again during bedtime, but this time I was able to talk him out of it. 

On Sunday, Chris' parents stopped by with Uncle Bobby, Aunt Judy, and cousin David, who were visiting for the weekend.  Even though we've been in the house for a year and we've seen them since we moved in, this was the first time they got to see the house.  After giving them the tour, Noah entertained everyone by showing them all his favorite toys :)



Sunday evening, a friend (and old coworker) and her family came over for dinner.  It was also their first time seeing the house, so we gave our second tour of the day ;)  Her kids are a few years older than Noah, but they still have a good time playing together.   I've learned Play-Doh really is fun for all ages!


Jill and Noah have been lunch buddies since way back in 2013 when Noah was only a few months old.  My how Noah has grown since then!

How was your weekend?

Friday, June 26, 2015

Five on Friday

There were a few days this week where Noah had no desire in going out and just wanted to "play at home".  It may have had something to do with the runny nose that he got mid week.  Thankfully we were still able to have some fun with friends and at the pool and just ended up taking super long naps yesterday and on Wednesday.  Hopefully he will feel better soon and we can enjoy our weekend.  Have a great weekend and enjoy my Friday Five...

ONE

Noah got this construction outfit and drill for his birthday last November.  He puts it on and "builds" things on a regular basis.  This week he was building "Elmo's house" and I just love how into it he was :)


TWO

I've always been a Poland Spring lover.  You can always find me carrying a bottle of water with me.  The tap water in NJ does not taste good... at all!  But after reading this article, it has me thinking about switching to a filtered water system.   We don't have a water dispenser in our fridge and we can't do a faucet mounted filter because of the spray nozzle, so it looks like our best option would be an under sink mounted filtration system.   I would love to hear suggestions on filters that you use and love before purchasing.  I would also love suggestions for a water bottle to use when I'm out running errands instead of the Poland Spring plastic bottles.  So far I'm looking into this one...

bottle


THREE

As you may have seen from my Instagram feed earlier this week, Noah loves to play grocery store and picnic with my mom.  They take all the food from the basket, ring it up using his cash register, and then put it in his shopping cart.  Then they take all the stuffed animals out, hand out all the bowls and plates we have, and decide what each friend should have to eat.  No matter how many times they do it, it never gets old.


FOUR

A few people have asked me what gel we use to spike Noah's hair.  We found this gel by asking a friend of ours who's son has AMAZING hair!  No joke, he was born with a full head of hair just waiting to be styled.  While Noah has no where near as much hair, we love that this gel is all natural and holds his little faux hawk in place for the whole day (even through nap).

gel

FIVE

We were planning to go to this relatively new park, Diggerland, this weekend!  As the name suggests, it's a construction theme park that just happens to be located in New Jersey.  Since Noah is really into diggers and is now tall enough to go on most rides, we thought it would be fun to take him.  Even before Noah's runny nose, we were worried we would have to postpone our trip because of the forecast for rain on Saturday.   Instead, we are now planning to go next weekend.  Let's hope the weather will be nicer!


I'm linking up with The Farmer's Wife and September Farm for "Oh Hey Friday"!




I'm also linking up with April's blog for their Five on Friday!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Guy Behind the Blog - June Edition

While I blog a lot Noah and what we do on a regular basis, I don't know how much you actually know about my husband, Chris.  So, when I saw Elizabeth at Chasin' Mason participate in the The Guys Behind the Blog link-up, I thought it looked like fun :)  So here I am, participating in the June edition.  Chris works long hours, so during the week our conversations revolve around what we each did that day and filling each other in on any pertinent information.  So instead of doing this in person, I emailed him the questions for him to work on during his commute home on the train.   Here's your chance to get to know Chris a little bit better with the prompts Betsy came up with.


1 // What’s the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

Best vacation is our Italy honeymoon.    I've always wanted to go to Italy and our honeymoon gave me the perfect opportunity.   Planning the trip to explore 4 different cities made it even more interesting.   Having always loved Italian food as well, that was something that I looked forward to.   Arriving in Venice, I was just amazed by the amount of water that surrounded the city and all of the boats and canals that were everywhere.   It was such a fun city to explore and enjoy.   Rome was one of the must see cities for anyone.   The historic places alone had my head spinning.   The Colesseum was probably my favorite place to see in Rome.   Florence was such a pretty city and we stayed at a great hotel that was in the center of everything.   Lastly, we stayed in Naples, and the highlight of that city was actually taking a chauffeured drive in a Mercedes into the Amalfi Coast.   Overall, there were so many fun and exciting things that we did and saw (and ate) that it was a trip of a lifetime.
2 // If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go?

I'd pick Australia if I could go anywhere.   Always wanted to go there since I was in elementary school.    It just seemed like such a fun place that had great beaches and unique animals like kangroos.   Unfortunately, a trip to Australia would require a big time commitment of probably 2 weeks, as well as a big monetary price.    I hope one day down to the road to be able to make the trip all the way there.   It seems like it would be such a fun and relaxing trip.   Ironically, we actually met a couple from Australia when we were in Italy on our honeymoon, so I'm sure they'd love to meet up.   They have a young daughter too so her and Noah could play together.

3 // Are there any summer traditions that you have or would like to start? (think things like big picnics, summer activities, bonfires, or day trips!)

I'd love to be able to take Noah down to the Jersey Shore for at least a day (maybe more) each summer.    Ever since I can remember, my parents would rent a house down the shore for either 1 or 2 weeks.   I remember packing the car to the gills and leaving first thing in the morning on a Saturday and then spending a week down the shore.   Some years we'd either rent bikes or trek our own bikes down there and bicycle to the end of the island.   We'd literally live at the amusement park, Fantasy Island, that was down there.   We'd try to play as much mini golf as we could.   We'd eat out at all the great restaurants down there, we'd grab ice cream at the Skipper Dipper ice cream shop right near our house, and do a bunch of other annual traditions.   A lot of those places are still around, so it will definitely be fun to bring Noah down to those places to allow him to enjoy the things that always brought a smile to my face in the summer.

4 // The 4th of July is coming up…what’s a must-have picnic or BBQ food for you?

Must have at a BBQ = corn and watermelon.     Once we moved into a new house in the mid 1980's, we had a deck with a grill.   We'd have a lot of BBQ's and we'd have a huge spread of food and desserts.   One big tradition was to always buy a ton of corn and to shuck it on the deck earlier in the day, then have it on the grill for the BBQ.   Another one of my favorite BBQ must haves is watermelon.   I've always loved watermelon and I think over the years, I've grown to love it even more, which almost seems hard to believe.    Noah definitely likes holding and eating corn, and he's also become a fan of watermelon, so two of my must have items have already passed down to the little guy.

5 // Think about your ideal vacation…are you in a cozy cabin, camping in a tent, or hanging in a hotel?

Ideal vacation is sight seeing and a beach/pool.    I've always felt that a vacation is a time to relax, and what better place to do that than on a beach and at a pool?    I've never really been a fan of cold weather vacations or skiing getaways ,so for me, the beach and pool is the place to be.   If you combine that with cool sight seeing and some great restaurants, then you've got me hooked.   It's fun to explore new and different scenes and attractions.    New restaurants these days are starting to pop up like crazy.    The internet is also a great research tool for searching for cool attractions and restaurants.   I thoroughly read reviews on a number of different sites like Yelp, Trip Advisor, etc and those usually lead me into the right direction.


 
Blogging tips