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LATEST POSTS

I can't stand it!

I can't stand it!

This blog has become such a big part of my life that during times when I can't blog, I get this nagging sad feeling. Right now we are frantically working to finish the National Breastfeeding Month with a bang and planning the annual Vegas trip for the ABC Expo, so very little time is left to blog, which will change again shortly at the end of this month. In the meantime, this is what has been keeping us busy.... [...]

Something cool brewing

Something cool brewing

I know a ton of my readers still breastfeed. Or maybe at this point are expecting a new baby or just had one.   We are running a super cool initiative for World Breastfeeding Month at Daily Mom, where readers get to share their breastfeeding stories with everyone. At the end of the month we will be running a HUGE and I mean, HUGE breastfeeding giveaway and I just want to give you the heads up to watch for it. We are putting it together now and it is massive. It will include EVERYTHING one might want, if they are a new breastfeeding mom, a mom breastfeeding a toddler, an exclusively pumping mom. We will have 4 winners. So don't miss it. I think that's all. Thought it kind of went with the previous post. [...]

South Seas Getaway Day 3: A tour around the resort and Pool time

South Seas Getaway Day 3: A tour around the resort and Pool time

Day 3 of 3 Days at South Seas Resort. See gorgeous Day 1 here and exciting Day 2 here   #justescape was the hashtag of our South Seas, Captiva trip and I can certainly say that is what we did. We just escaped. Looking at the photos, it is almost as if I have temporary amnesia from our stay there. I don't even remember and can't imagine being in that beauty. I guess it's normal because I feel that way every time I step onto the beaches here in Florida. But one thing I do know is how much I wish I could be there again. Taking photos, enjoying the sunshine, the food, the view. Not a care in the world. The last day was spent almost entirely at the pool. Thanks for the pool cabana which has long become a MUST HAVE on all our beach vacations, we were able to relax and enjoy the[...]

Lexi Twins in Nununu Baby - Cuteness Overload

Lexi Twins in Nununu Baby - Cuteness Overload

So the plan was to have the girls wear these adorable and cool outfits to Disney and take lots of adorable and cool photos with them hugging and holding hands and looking adorable and cool with the Cinderella's castle in the background. Just like most everything in motherhood, then real life happened. Real life means two crabby 2 year olds who either wanted a balloon or nothing to do with each other (hold hands...ha!) or out of the heat or to go ride rides. Lesson learned, little ones, lesson learned. So we scrapped the idea and decided to try again later. Do a Lexitwin photoshoot somewhere else. Do it after Alexa had some time to warm up to being around Lexi (opposite personalities mean that shy and quiet (in public) Alexa is often freaked out by extra-energetic in-your-face L[...]

Our Favorite Active Outdoor Toys

Our Favorite Active Outdoor Toys

I've been mentally writing this post the whole summer. Every time I would go outside with Lexi, I would think about mentioning this and that in a post on the blog. So I'll keep it short but to the point. After getting glasses, we decided to start spending even more time outdoors because that was the only thing that seemed to have any kind of correlation to slowing down myopia in studies . So we figured why not focus on spending as much time as possible outdoors. That meant creating an environment that was stimulating and interesting enough, especially for Lexi since she has a pretty high threshold on stimulation, just like her mama. I had a few items we loved before that we moved outside and then slowly "collected" other toys that have together created her "outdoor space". [...]

Sun and Fun: Toys and Safety Accessories

Sun and Fun: Toys and Safety Accessories

The last post in the Sun and Fun series is about all the items that actually make it fun to be in the sun (as well as safe and comfortable). For the other posts, go here: Submarine Kids Petit Crabe Konfidence Number 1: SUNHAT! I have gone through..... one, two, three, four, maybe five sunhats for Lexi. I've tried different brands and the only one stand alone (not with a swimsuit) hat that sticks out at me is this Polarn O Pyret sun hat. It looks great with pretty much any outfit, unlike the swim hats I've bought before. White, UV protective, but most importantly flattering with its wide shape and rounded top. It has ties at the bottom for those lovelies who tend to tear hats off at first opportune moment.    It's just a hat that really works for us. BUY[...]

Cute Organic Toddler Underwear Round Up

Cute Organic Toddler Underwear Round Up

Lexi is 2.5 years old today, she has been potty trained since 22 months. She goes dry at night IF I make sure to put her on the potty before we go to bed and she doesn't breastfeed much at night. She has been solidly and reliably going on the potty on her own without a reminder since about 24 months. Like any toddler, she waits to pee till the last second because she doesn't want to stop playing, and then run run runs to the potty, but it's still amazing to me that she does it all on her own. I wrote about how she got to be potty trained. I can't say we trained her, because we only introduced her to the concept and kept communicating it to her and then she just went when she was ready. I never wrote about what happened next. She had a few accidents in the car while trying to figure out t[...]

Real Life in Cell Phone Photos

Real Life in Cell Phone Photos

Here are some of our more candid moments that would normally be posted on IG. I am thinking about coming back to IG soon, just posting during our travels and such. Probably in a few weeks or so. So these photos- just some of the moments of our every day life. 1. Lexi and me at the beach. She is so much fun at 2.5!   Top to Bottom, Left to Right 1. At the playground with her cartoon crush Prince Wednesday ( she is no longer crashing on him, btw. Moved onto Bill from Curious George books and Winnie the Pooh) 2. Just us hanging out in the backyard 3. Lexi walked up to Brian (Alexa's dad), sat in his lap and asked him to read a book. 4. Two redneck husbands. 5. The girls at a Disney train 6. Cinderella's Carousel with my new hair ( which is here to stay btw) 7[...]

Reader Question of the Month

Reader Question of the Month

Hi Elena! What are some things I could/should be teaching my 18 month old? She is so active that is hard to get her to sit and pay attention, LOL. Thank you! That's an interesting question. And the answer is simple NOTHING! (Lexi at about 20 months) You should not be "teaching" your 18 months old anything. You should be interacting and playing with her. At this age, everything should still go by her cues. What she is interested in and how she prefers doing things. She will get to learn alphabet when she is ready, or learn to count. Right now the biggest gift you could give her is your time. Talking to her and playing with her will teach her everything she needs, including language. Obviously, you could totally insert small lessons into every day life, like washing hands[...]

South Seas Getaway Day 2: Jet Skis, Beach and Fun

South Seas Getaway Day 2: Jet Skis, Beach and Fun

Day 2 of 3 Days at South Seas Resort. See gorgeous Day 1 here The next day after our arrival,packed with more experiences, was no less full and exciting. After a nice relaxed breakfast buffet at the marina with gorgeous views of gleaming white cottages and blooming bougainvillea, we set off for the beach. What gorgeous beaches Captiva has! Note Lexi's Peter Pan Dress  by Right Banks Babies.  Such perfect colors for a tropical paradise, those patterns are just amazing. It's technically supposed to be a dress, but given that Lexi is really tall, it worked as a top for us :) You would think that we would be used to teal waters and soft sand, but every time I get to spend a chance at the beach, I thank myself for making the move to Florida. There is nothing quite a[...]

BUSY MOMS: How to get more done in less time (GTD technique)

BUSY MOMS: How to get more done in less time (GTD technique)

This is a part of BUSY MOM series of posts. To see others, click here: BUSY MOM TIPS All my DM girls have been asking for this post and here it is. I know many of my readers, busy moms, might love this concept too. I have a post pending on 10 best tips for productivity and time management and a related post about my work out routine, but it all wouldn't be complete with an in-detail account of my main time management technique, POMODORO. { Glasses c/o David Kind } Up until recently I have been struggling with fitting everything into a 24 hour day. With all the hobbies and projects, obligations and websites, desires and an active and engaged toddler, it seemed like there was no way to find extra time to be more productive, or accomplish nearly everything on my constantly [...]

Super Lexi!

Super Lexi!

We have been so deep in pretend play and dress up that I thought it was fitting for a mother of a 2 year old to write at least one post about it. At first the two most played out dress up and pretend games were DOCTOR and SUPERHERO.  Just a week ago, I ordered a Princess Dress up outfit and the twirling and "Mama, I'm a princess!" have been incredibly cute to watch. I can't stop saying what a magical time it is right now. There isn't an hour that goes by that I don't hug Lexi tight and say "Oh My God, can you be any cuter?" To which she normally says "Mhm!" Unfortunately, someone here LOVES to play sans clothes, so I can never share any of the videos or photos of what goes on at home, but I love that I have it all to remember this darling age by. For her superhero play, she loves [...]

Perfect Exercise Routine for Busy Moms

Perfect Exercise Routine for Busy Moms

UGH! Can I start this post with UGH? I really didn't think I'd be here at this point, but whatever. Let me start from the beginning. Or actually let me start with this phrase: I was in better shape right after birth than I am now ( at the time of writing). Bam! That blows! It took 3 years (pregnancy and 2 toddler years) to UNDO all the work I had done prior to pregnancy. People often ask me how I stayed so fit and "skinny" after birth. Before, I could have told them something worthwhile. Now I just chuckle. I looked good after birth because I was REALLY fit going INTO pregnancy. What went wrong? Motherhood did me in :) Going into pregnancy I was in fabulous shape. Best of my life. I'd been skinnier before, but never was I that fit. I exercised during pregnancy, but it was more to[...]

A Visit to a Train Museum - Week 12 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

A Visit to a Train Museum - Week 12 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

If you haven't joined our 52 Weeks of Toddler/Preschooler Experiences and explored all the ways you can have fun together, check out this post and then this post. WEEK 12 - A Visit to a Train Museum To see all our experiences, click here For this week's activity I didn't take my big girl camera so all the photos are taken with a cell phone. I really cannot stand having my iphone camera as my only option, because Lexi moves so fast and so unexpectedly, it is difficult enough to take photos of her with a DSLR, let alone a slow bad quality iPhone camera. And all the point and shoots I have gotten no matter how good the reviews are, are just lacking. Maybe it's time to invest in a mirrorless camera. Anyways... I had been planning on taking Lexi to a train museum for weeks,[...]

Beach Photography

Beach Photography

I've shared some of the photos here and there, but never the whole beach trip. Nothing special, just some eye candy to look at. Swimsuit: Petit Crabe Pink Dress: Nununu  Baby          [...]

A Quick Disney Guide for Toddlers

A Quick Disney Guide for Toddlers

This post is catered towards walking 1,2 and 3 year olds and their parents who want a quick overview of things, and don't have time to go in-depth. The guide is obviously subjective, but having gone to Disney about 15-20 times with a baby and toddler, I have a pretty good handle on things. general tips and guide: what to wear For adults, it's a personal decision. While many choose to wear shorts and tennis shoes, there is a decent number of people who make Disney a special occasion and like to dress nicely. I belong to the latter camp. Because we go to Disney so often, I don't always put on nice clothes, but I do like to make it feel more special than just a family going to local Six Flags for the day. Disney isn't like going hiking, it has plenty of stops, shops, rest areas, so [...]

Creating a Green Playroom: Non-toxic Play Tents

Creating a Green Playroom: Non-toxic Play Tents

I have been slowly but surely designing and adding to Lexi's playroom over the past year making it into a comfortable space that is also non-toxic. As always, the last part has proven itself to be pretty difficult. I keep struggling deciding whether I want to go for what looks cute, is cheaper and easier to get OR making sure that it's as non-toxic as possible, even if that means sacrificing looks and price. Of course I want the first one. I want Lexi's playroom to look really cute, but in the end I always end up doing the right thing, even if that means getting natural wood bookshelves instead of gleaming white ones. At this point the playroom is virtually complete minus the art work and some lighting that is coming in soon, so I thought it was time to start highlighting the choices[...]

Beach Evenings with Friends

Beach Evenings with Friends

It's summer now, so it's almost too hot to go out, even in the evenings except on cooler days. It should  cool down in a month or so, but in the meantime I get to post photos from our evening beach trips a few weeks back. Jenn with her son Caden who is 4 months younger than Lexi  were with us that day and we had so much fun. I picked up sushi on the way, we swam, played with the sand, they ran around and we got a chance to chat while the kids played. I gotta say life in Florida is pretty perfect. I won't write any more, just some pictures from that day. Swimsuit: Submarine Kids Swim jacket: Konfidence Purple tee: RUUM White Flower Bubble Shorts: Right Bank Babies   [...]

Sun and Fun: Konfidence

Sun and Fun: Konfidence

Third post in the Sun and Fun series! For the other posts, go here: Submarine Kids Petit Crabe   KONFIDENCE I have mentioned Konfidence in passing, but I never really dedicated a whole post to them. And they definitely warrant a whole post. This is a company from UK that makes some amazing swim products designed to help children develop skills necessary to learn swimming. I met their reps at the ABC Expo last year and we have been using their products since. Swim skills with Konfidence float suits start early on with learning how to balance in the water, how to keep yourself upright. Then you transition into floating and moving in the water. Step by step, getting rid of the "help" and learning slowly how to stay afloat without any help at all. Konfidence swims[...]

Reader Question: Toddler Emotions and Tantrums

Reader Question: Toddler Emotions and Tantrums

I've been getting some questions over email and I normally don't have time to answer non-urgent emails, so I thought I could kill two birds with one stone if I answer some of these on the blog. So here we go.   Reader Question Toddler emotions / tantrums - I'm not sure if Lexi is in this stage yet, as she seems happy and engaged in almost all of your posts but my son moved into the high emotions / tantrum phase quickly after his second birthday. Hearing your thoughts on helping toddlers with big emotions and how to handle tantrums would be great. I've ordered some books on the topic but I would be really interested in hearing about a real mom's experience. From what I read on your blog it seems as though you are very respectful of Lexi's feelings - I wondered if you could give[...]

Scavenger Hunt in the Woods - Week 11 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

Scavenger Hunt in the Woods - Week 11 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

If you haven't joined our 52 Weeks of Toddler/Preschooler Experiences and explored all the ways you can have fun together, check out this post and then this post. WEEK 11 - Scavenger Hunt in the Woods To see all our experiences, click here I missed a few weeks because I didn't have enough photos and/or descriptions to write a whole post, so I will combine some of those later. Often we end up doing 2 entries in a week, but it's not always exciting and it doesn't have to be. Last week we had a semi-spontaneous outing that turned out to be so much fun. We went to a nearby preserve with the goal to do a scavenger hunt. I grabbed a flash light and a rope to mimick one of her favorite stories about the Berenstein Bears and the Spooky Old Tree. Boy, did she have a field day with[...]

Sun and Fun : Petit Crabe

Sun and Fun : Petit Crabe

Second post in the Sun and Fun series! For the other posts, go here: Submarine Kids Konfidence Petit Crabe is another one of those discoveries that I am super proud of :) haha I am not sure how I even found them but when I started looking through their swimwear, I was instantly IN LOVE. It is so simple and understated, yet packs a real punch with the colors and contrasting zippers and back graphic. I don't know what it was about it but it just sang to me. I wish I could show you all the colors they carry ( the yellow is YUM!), but I guess that is just the reason to visit their website. All swimwear has built in sun protection and most have a matching hat. The zip up rash guard (coral) has been one of our biggest life savers. We use it as a cover up for pretty much[...]

South Seas Resort Getaway: Day 1

South Seas Resort Getaway: Day 1

I want to tell you a story about an amazing time with my amazing family at an amazing resort in an amazing location. Last month we were invited to visit and stay at the South Seas Resort for a few days. I am pretty used to travelling and writing about resorts, experiencing amenities and the destination. But this was truly something special. Special enough that my husband couldn't stop talking about it and still often says to me " You know what I really miss? Being at that resort" (he can never remember names lol). And every time he says that I know exactly which resort he means. There was something so perfect about South Seas that could have never been depicted on their website, or through photos found online. It just took our breath away. I hope that the photos I took during our [...]

Sun and Fun: Submarine Kids

Sun and Fun: Submarine Kids

I am super excited about getting this series started. Aside from the fact that we live in Florida with eternal sunshine, UV rays, SPF, UPF and swimsuits, I am just really stoked about the swimsuit companies I have found and have been using that I want to share with you. Submarine Kids Swimwear This has to be my favorite children's swimsuit company. I have never seen such unique and colorful designs. I discovered them when Lexi was one, but I still missed out on their adorable infant bubble suits since Submarine Kids tends to run small and Lexi tends to run big The quality of the swimsuits as well as the patterns are much more impressive in real life than on their catalog photos, but I think I did a pretty good job capturing them through these photos. Submarine Kids are currentl[...]

Closing Comment Section For a Period of Time

Closing Comment Section For a Period of Time

Hey, guys! I wanted to give you a heads up that I will be closing comments on the blog for a little bit. It's not permanent, just during this time when I need to concentrate on things that are really important. Not that your comments aren't important- they always are- but THAT really is the biggest problem. I want to and try to respond to most comments that need (or even those that don't need) a response. That takes a very long time and right now time is a commodity. So I have to pick between posting regularly or responding to comments, since they take about the same amount of time as writing a post does. Not closing comments and just not responding to them doesn't work for my personality, I will always WANT to respond. I can't handle things left open and people thinking I am ignori[...]

2nd Birthday Party Outfits: Swan Lake

2nd Birthday Party Outfits: Swan Lake

So I have a lot of photos from Lexitwin birthday party. In order to share some of them, I decided to break the posts down into parts, just like before. You might want to read: Planning, Decor and Favor Bags With this part being all about our party outfits which was a big part of party planning. LEXITWINS' OUTFITS As I previously mentioned, these outfits were the inspiration for the party. Two little swans, Lexitwins, with the perfect pre-,during and pool outfits for the party. Since the outfits were pretty much decided before we even started the party planning, the only thing we had to do is find perfect hair accessories and shoes. That wasn't hard - Etsy had hundreds of matching bows to pick from and Livie and Luca had just come out with a cute bow sandal. W[...]

What is Gentle Parenting?

What is Gentle Parenting?

  There is a lot of misunderstanding surrounding what is called "gentle parenting" or "child-led parenting" so I thought I'd clear it up a bit. What it is: respectful patient understanding loving child led in the sense that they are not TOLD when to do basic natural things, but asked whether they are ready to. nurturing picking battles What it isn't: isn't permissive isn't easy isn't spoiling isn't about things but about feelings a child running your life (after the early years where attachment is first being developed)  What it results in: mutual trust and respect loving relationship emotionally well-adjusted child resiliency secure attachment Gentle parenting, or parenting in general, isn't a science. It's like a more defi[...]

Blueberry Picking - Week 10 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

Blueberry Picking - Week 10 of 52 Weeks of Experiences

  If you haven't joined our 52 Weeks of Toddler/Preschooler Experiences and explored all the ways you can have fun together, check out this post and then this post. WEEK 9 - Blueberry Picking To see all our experiences, click here     Last week I posted about Daily Mom recruiting new contributors. The response was so overwhelming that I almost forgot to blog about this with all the work I had to do. {Literally I have not done anything but respond, answer questions and set up all week and I usually get good 8 hours of work between Lexi's nap, what hubby gives me and how late I stay up at night. So to me it seems like it's been a month, not just a week.} Anyways, this  was one of the more fun and completely new and unexpected experiences for Lexi. For abou[...]

Painting and Kite Flying with Friends

Painting and Kite Flying with Friends

Last week I wrote about messy toddler painting on a big canvas. What followed that painting session was inviting some of our friends over to join us and a sprinkler run that ensued. Pay attention to their faces as they run through the water- priceless! Then we pulled out a kite and the kids were just amazed! They kept begging for a turn to fly the kite. We try to repeat these golf course gathering at least once a week when schedule allows and everyone is in town. Enjoy the pictures! [...]

Outdoor Painting

Outdoor Painting

About two months ago, I decided to explore the idea of painting on a bigger canvas than a notepad. I brought out a big roll of paper, Crayola washable tempera paints with brushes and let Lexi explore it. Painting on paper quickly got old and she proceeded to color all over her body. She was probably one of the most fun and creative activities that can be done with a toddler. Lexi is usually very active and prefers either doing something physical or reading. Drawing or painting wasn't something that kept her attention for TOO long. However taking it outside and making it messy opened a whole new world of possibilities for her. This is the activity we do virtually every day. Sometimes she gets VERY messy, other times she paints on paper, but she always gets some paint on her and aro[...]