The Adventure Starts Here: February 2014

Friday, February 28, 2014

Five on Friday

Greetings from Miami Beach.  Here's my weekly five :)


Today is our last day in Miami Beach.   It's been nice to get away from the cold weather and just relax. While it's definitely different vacationing with a 1 year old, we've still found time to relax.  I was even able to do some reading on this trip… usually during Noah's naps or after he went to sleep at night.  Currently I'm reading Divergent for my book club.  This month, we plan to go see the movie as a group and then discuss the book compared to the movie afterwards.  I'm really looking forward to it!  I finished Divergent so fast cause it was so good.  So while on vacation I bought the next book in the series and I'm already over halfway through it!  I definitely recommend the series!


Last week, we made a little change to our entertainment unit.  This unit has gone through a few transformations since Noah was born.  Before, it was the typical TV stand.  We stored our components,  Wii, DVDs, and our photo albums in it.  Then Noah came around, and slowly all those things had to be relocated so he couldn't get his hands on them and destroy.  The unit instead became his toy chest.  The unit has open shelving in the middle and then two glass doors on each side.  Noah learned how to open the doors quickly, but now we've found that it's getting harder to close them and keep them closed.  I guess the magnetic clasp part got messed up… I wonder how that could have happened ;)  The other night, Chris had the brilliant idea to just take the drawers off.  We were worried as time went on, Noah could do more damage or even brake the glass one day.  Chris took the doors and all the hinges off using a screw driver.  We still need to buy a brown sharpie and fill in the parts of exposed wood (where the hinges were) so it's no longer an eyesore.


The day before we left for Miami, I went and got my nails done.  I went with a fun pink color for my toes, and a neutral gray for my fingers.  I made it a little exciting by adding a glitter top coat to my ring fingers.  I really like how they turned out :)


A friend of mine turned me onto a new snack, and it's quickly become a favorite of mine.  It's not too unhealthy if you eat a normal portion.  But as we've learned, that's almost impossible, so you are warned!  It's really simple, it's just Wheat Thins dipped in Philadelphia Garden Vegetable Cream Cheese.  It's amazing!  Some days when I'm in more of a grazing mood, I consider this my lunch!


I can't believe I will be turning 30 on Monday!  It really doesn't bother me though.  I feel like I'm doing the things I wanted to be doing when I turned 30… married and raising a little kid.  I consider myself super lucky and I'm excited to see what the next 10 years bring!  

Make sure to check out DarciAprilChristina and Natasha's blogs for their Five on Friday!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Love List - Birthday Edition

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

I will be turning 30 on Monday.  Under normal circumstances, I would love to get any of these items.  However, since we are currently in Miami Beach celebrating my birthday, I'm really not asking for any physical gifts this year.  But that doesn't stop me finding things that catch my eye.  Lately it seems like I'm attracted to dresses.  Too bad I don't go many places where dresses like these would be appropriate ;)   I've also fallen in love with this blush trend and would love a blush bag.  Other than clothes, the only thing that I would really love is Lightroom.  In my downtime I love to work on my photography and think this would definitely bring it to the next level.    

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Little Things

Since we are currently in Florida on vacation, I'm just stopping by with a quick post today.  There was a "heatwave" in New Jersey this past Sunday… hitting a whopping 50 degrees!  Noah has recently become very in love with the vacuum cleaner.  So much so that he has a major meltdown when we put it away.  So Chris suggested that I take Noah outside for a walk while he vacuumed.  It was a great idea!   It makes me long for the spring when we can start taking daily walks and go to the playground again!

^^^ I love how he holds my hand while we walk and how he had to chew his toothbrush the whole time (he is really teething!).  

Once again I'm linking up with Jess of Sadie Sky Boutique and Ashley of Words About Waverly.  

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Miami Beach Bound

We are currently on our way to spend 4 days in Miami Beach!  I am so ready to spend some time in the warm weather, sipping drinks at the pool, and playing in the sand with Noah.  I will be sure to recap our vacation when we get back :)

Monday, February 24, 2014

Olympic Highlights

I first started this blog when Chris and I got engaged.  Originally, we planned for Chris to do some guest posts.  Since then, I think Chris has maybe done 3 guest posts total.  We decided it was about time that he did one again!  We've been super into watching the Winter Olympics, so we thought it was fitting that he would do a recap on some of our favorite moments.  


The Winter Olympics kicked off in Sochi, Russia on Feb 7, 2014.   One of the more iconic images of the opening ceremonies was this one, which shows the 5th flower malfunctioning and not opening up into a ring.

The big news prior to the Olympics starting was that the hotel rooms were not up to par.   That sentiment could be summed up from this tweet from USA bobsled team member Johnny Quinn, who was trapped in his bathroom and had to break through the door in order to get out.

In "you can't make this stuff up" department, Johnny Quinn was then trapped in an elevator a few days later!

One of the cooler stories from Sochi was that of the Jamaican bobsled team.  They actually started a crowd funding campaign to help fund their trip to the Olympics.  They raised more than $25k through these efforts.   They did not medal, but they should be given honorable mention for their watermelon themed helmets!

One of the most interesting men in the Olympics had to be 55 year old (and Mexico's only Olympian) alpine skier Hubertus von Hohenlohe.     This was his 6th Olympics, no less.   His mariachi-themed race suit was a classic!   “If you cannot win, then at least be stylish,” he was telling a tv reporter.    Unfortunately, von Hohenlohe crashed and ended up with a DNF in the slalom results.

The USA women's figure skating team had a tough time competing with the world's best skaters.   One of the classic pics from Sochi was that of Ashley Wagner, who did her best McKayla Maroney face.

You have to love the enthusiasm by the gold medal winning athletes in these two pictures.....

One of the more interesting events in Sochi was the skeleton.   (think luge, but instead of laying on your back, you're on your stomach, face first).   Since your helmet is front and center, some of the athletes got very creative with the artwork on their helmets.   Here are a few of ones that stood out, which are actually all from the Canadian skeleton team:

Although they didn't medal, the men's curling team from Norway again looked like they were the best dressed team on the ice.

One of the more touching stories from Sochi was that of skiier Alex Bilodeau of Canada, who won a gold medal in moguls, and celebrated with his brother Frederic, who has cerebral palsy.   Very inspirational!

Oh Canada!   Major props should be given to Canada for winning the gold in men's ice hockey (beating Sweden 3-0) and also for women's ice hockey (for beating the USA 3-2).

The closing ceremonies were last night and Russia decided to poke fun at themselves over the 5th ring malfunction, so they had performers re-create that opening ceremony moment......

At the end of the day, this is probably my favorite Olympic moment from Sochi.   Watching hockey early in the morning on the weekend with my little guy.

We are already looking forward to watching the Summer Olympics in Rio (Summer 2016).  Be sure to come back for another blog post recap from Chris :)

Friday, February 21, 2014

Five on Friday

TGIF!!! Do people even say that anymore???  I miss the days when there was a full line up of family friendly TV shows on a Friday night.  Can we bring that back???  Anyway, another week has come and gone.  Here's my weekly five… enjoy!


This week my mom and I took Noah to get his picture taken.  We just went to Picture People at the mall.  We have a membership that is about to expire and I had a free trio frame to redeem!  I was holding off until Noah was better at standing and walking on his own.


Yesterday, I went and got my hair done.  Since we are leaving on Tuesday, I wanted it to be all nice for our trip.  I love getting away for a few hours and being pampered.


Recently, Noah and I have tried two new mommy & me type classes.  One was an art class and the other was an intro to preschool type class.  While both were fun, I've learned that I am the kind of mom that thinks that little babies like Noah (15 months) don't need a ton of structure.  I figure that they will have tons of time for a structured school setting, so I'd rather spend our time doing activity based classes.  In reality, I'd love to just arrange play dates with friends at the park, but until the weather improves, I want to have somewhere to go.  So I think we will continue with our music class, sign up for the art class, and look into finding a gymnastics type class.  


When not carrying a diaper bag, I am in love with using a small cross body purse that just carries my essentials.  Chris works in the handbag department of Tommy Hilfiger and it's definitely a perk.  I have this bag in a few colors and LOVE it!


Recently we've starting spiking Noah's hair into a faux hawk.  It started off with Chris just using water. We liked the look of it so much, we decided to get some gel.  We learned from a friend of ours (who's son was born with a full head of hair) that they make an olive oil based gel that's perfect for babies.  Chris made a special trip to the store and picked it up this past weekend.  We've had so many compliments on his hair so far :)  I think it makes him look so grown up now!

Make sure to check out DarciAprilChristina and Natasha's blogs for their Five on Friday!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

St. Patty's Day Fashion

Now that Valentine's Day is over, it's time to think about St. Patty's Day.  Noah and I will be going to a St. Patty's Day party with the MOMS Club as well as the town parade.  We of course will be dressed in all green for both!  I'm a fan of the color green and love any excuse to dress Noah up for holidays!  I don't find there's as many St Patty's Day specific clothes, but you can bet that I picked up a few things for Noah to wear.  

Lucky shirt | Kiss Me | Guinness | Sweater | Shell

And you can bet that we will be wearing these "FLINN" shirts again this year!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Weekend Recap - The Little Things

For this week's "The Little Things", I thought I'd share all the random little things we did this weekend.  I feel like life is made up of a bunch "little things", and they are often more fun than the "big things".  This past 3-day weekend was busy, productive, and fun.  We celebrated Valentine's Day in a laid back way.  We exchanged some small gifts and Chris picked up take out :)  On Saturday, my dad came over to help install a new car battery.  And on Sunday, my mom came over to babysit Noah while we were at our cooking class.

^^^ we gave Noah this tool kit and a few books

^^^ I gave Chris the man basket and he got me roses and tons of chocolate!

^^^ I love how Noah is ready to help the guys!  And Noah got to do some "cooking" too while watching my mom make him some scrambled eggs ;)

Chris had off work on Monday because of Presidents' Day.  We went to a make up music class (from when Noah was sick in December).  I love when Chris is able to come with us and gets to experience these things with Noah.  Now that Noah is walking in class, it's completely different from the last time Chris came with us on MLK Day!

After class, we went to my parents' house for lunch and to go sledding (we also needed to pick up our suitcases).  First we took Noah to the retention basin in their neighborhood since it's a medium sized hill.  Chris went down with Noah twice, but Noah didn't seem to like it.  So we went back to my parents' house and pulled Noah in his little sled down the driveway… he loved that!

^^^ waving to us all as he drove by :)  when did my baby become a little boy???

^^^ Real life captured by my dad.  I'm asking telling Chris (for the second or third time) not to throw Noah up in the air.  It scares me when he does it with Noah in his snow suit, since that material is slippery!   He still did it multiple times despite my (and my mom's) requests.

On a side note, my mom got Noah some new shoes on Friday.  We took him to Stride Rite to get measured.  We got him some shoes in the fall and he was a size 4.5.  Since then he's preferred wearing his moccasins all the time.  But now that he's really walking I wanted a hard sole shoe for when we are outside.  It turns out he is now a size 7!  He got a lot of practice wearing them this weekend… Chris has been taking him to go get the mail.  We live in the farthest apartment from the elevator, so it's a VERY LONG WALK!

^^^ embarrassing evidence that when I get home I change into sweatpants but keep my sweater on ;)

I love 3 day weekends!  The time we get to spend as a family is so precious to me.  I want to bottle it up!

Once again I'm linking up with Jess of Sadie Sky Boutique and Ashley of Words About Waverly.  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

February Date - Cooking Class

For Christmas, I gave Chris "A Year of Dates".  On Christmas, he opened a stack of envelopes, one for each month of 2014.  Inside the envelopes are pre-planned (and some pre-paid) dates for us to enjoy each month.  At the beginning of each month, we open the envelope and schedule a day to go on the date.   I will be recapping our dates each month.  

For February, our date was to go to a cooking class.  We went to a cooking school in a nearby town called Classic Thyme.   We participated in a class there back in 2011 and really enjoyed it.  I thought it would be fun to try it again and bring back memories from our life when we were newly married.  

The class I signed us up for was an Italian Bootcamp this past Sunday.   Just like the last time we took the class, the recipes are divvied up between the students.  You are then in charge of following the recipe and prepping the ingredients (measuring and cutting).  Then the instructor calls you up by recipe and you, with a lot of her help, demonstrate to the class how to cook it.

The first class we took had maybe 10 people in it and Chris was the only guy.  This class had 18 people in it and was maybe 40% guys :)  We were in charge of making the Penne with Kale Pesto with Walnuts and Parmigiano Reggiano.  We cut up some garlic, zested a lemon, roughly chopped some kale, and measured out the rest of the ingredients.  When she called us up, we cooked the kale and the pasta, and used the food processor to make the pesto.  It was a super easy dish and was really yummy.  The biggest thing would be cleaning the food processor afterwards, but in my opinion it's worth it :)

We also watched the other students make their dishes.  Other than our pasta, I really liked the stuffed chicken thighs, eggplant rollatini, and the apple cake.  I'm not a huge soup person, but this was really yummy.  They put bread at the bottom of the bowl and I've decided that's how I want to eat all of my future soups!


So far we are really enjoying our monthly dates.  This month and March are two of the more expensive dates planned for the year.  Later in the year we will also have some more simple (and cheaper) dates.  

Monday, February 17, 2014

Valentine's Day Man Basket

Happy Presidents' Day!  Chris has the day off from work, and I'm excited to get an extra day to spend as a family :)

For Valentine's Day this year, I gave Chris a "Man Basket".  I got the idea from Katie and knew I wanted to make one for Chris.

I got the basket from Michaels and then filled it with items I knew Chris would love.  I got him a personalized pint glass (which is wrapped) and some of his favorite snacks.

Noah also made him a craft :)

Chris loved his gifts and I consider it a success :)
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