• Childhood Unplugged

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LATEST POSTS

Panorama and Things You Did Not Know About Prenatal Testing

Panorama and Things You Did Not Know About Prenatal Testing

I would like to officially announce that I have been selected to be one of the Panorama Moms this year. What that means is that I will be learning and writing about prenatal, genetic carrier, preimplantation and other types of pregnancy related testing available by Natera. It's an interesting learning experience and I hope that it will also help some of my readers make testing decisions that are safer and more accurate than the traditional testing. When you are having a baby there is so much on your mind.  You are always thinking about the health and safety of your baby first in almost every daily task that you take on.  Then the doctors present prenatal testing to you as an option. Maybe you had higher than normal numbers, maybe your age is considered "advanced maternal age". Whatever [...]

Lexifriends series: Caden

Lexifriends series: Caden

This one doesn't really need a lot of words. The photos should speak for themselves. But I will tell you guys a bit more about Caden, another one of Lexifriends, actually the only boy in her group of friends. See previous here: Lexifriends Series Caden is about 4 months younger than Lexi and is a boy to the core. It's so interesting to see the differences in behavior between Lexi, who's a pretty girly girl and Caden who is into trucks and superheros. But they play so well together. He tries to be gentle around her and often gets shy (in that way that boys get around girls). Lexi actually really loves Caden and keep talking about him and his birthday party we just came from. These photos were from a beach trip months ago where they had an absolute blast swimming, digging and "boati[...]

Flying with a toddler

Flying with a toddler

It's funny because I remember preparing for our first flight last year. I was (almost) terrified. 5 hours in one seat! Lexi had NEVER been able to sit still. Long car trips could be a nightmare, but at least you can stop. I had no idea what to expect.  I was hoping she'd sleep, but that usually lasts an hour. We could read books for an hour. Then maybe iPad/iPhone for an hour. But then what on earth could you do in an airplane cabin for another 2 hours? In reality, it's really not that big of a deal. So anyone freaking out right now about their first flight with a child, stop! After that first trip thinking about making the same trip next year for the ABC expo, I was not in the least worried. Granted it partially had to do with how much she's grown, but also with things like t[...]

Lexifriends series: Mel

Lexifriends series: Mel

Second post in the Lexifriend Series is about Melissa, or as Lexi used to call her "Mewiffa". See previous here: Lexifriends Series These two met at a Children's Museum and became instant friends. The girls have such similar personalities. Both extroverts, both very hyper and excited, neither likes sleep and has trouble "turning off". Watching them be together is hilarious. They jump around from excitement, hug each other and just totally vibe off off each other's personalities. You  might have seen some of their pictures in this beach post. Love these pictures below of the girls having fun with E in the Dinoland pool in their adorable Submarine Swimwear and Babiator sunglasses. By the way Lexi is STILL absolutely obsessed with this pool play center. I definitely recommend it for [...]

LexiFriends series: Alexa (aka Lexitwin)

LexiFriends series: Alexa (aka Lexitwin)

I've always wanted to write about Lexi's friends. Or more like show her friendships in pictures. So since these are easy posts, I'll get a few out while working on more lengthy ones in the meantime. Alexa, aka Lexitwin, was always Lexi's best friend. They met when they were 6 months at a music class. And upon learning that they were born on the same day and had essentially the same name ( Lexi, both short for Alexa and Alexis), we instantly became friends as families and, of course, the girls were hanging out a lot from that point on. If you follow this blog or my IG, you know very well that #Lexitwins is a hashtag we use for them, because of how much they look alike (similar heights and hair) and same birthday/name. Unfortunately, Lexitwin family had to move back to New York, so whi[...]

Birthday Party Favors

Birthday Party Favors

Oh this is my favorite part of the birthday party. Favor bags. I know it's a little bit unconventional, but I get a kick out of gifting our guests some of our favorite products. If I were independently wealthy, I would probably be doing it  all the time. I am not, so I only get to do it during events, like birthday parties and only thanks to my amazing sponsors below. Usually, I have to get generic white gift bags since they are the only ones large enough to fit all the goodies and don't have characters on them. I stapled  Stuck On You cards as labels on them to know who's getting which bags, since girls and boys got somewhat different items and I tried to customize each guest's bag to what I know about their preferences. Here is all that the bags contained, min[...]

Some Days Call for a Beach Day

Some Days Call for a Beach Day

Sometimes I just want to share photos. That's all. I have let go the feeling of obligation of making every post count, every post informational or educational or based on experience. Sometimes I don't need words. Just imagery. It doesn't mean I won't write about our lives, but it means that I now put less pressure on myself to do what I think I should do and instead do what I feel like doing in the moment. I have too many "SHOULDS" right  now to turn this blog , something I write for pleasure, into another SHOULD. Also, some amazing things on the horizon that I am very excited about, that are keeping me even busier these days, but that's the only way I've ever been able to live. Busy, with too many things to juggle. That's the only way to be productive for me and driven and into what[...]

Lexi's 3rd Birthday Princess and Pirate Party Decor

Lexi's 3rd Birthday Princess and Pirate Party Decor

Wow, it felt so weird typing "3rd birthday party". It feels like we JUST had her 2nd birthday party, but I guess that is how it's going to be from now on, isn't it? Years flying by, until I look back and realize that it's been 18 years and I have a beautiful adult girl who is ready to embark on her own life journey. Crazy, scary and empowering, right? But I guess at this moment, I will just focus on my little adorable precious 3 year old who STILL to this day talks about her birthday party. Almost daily. When she wakes up, she starts babbling about how when she turns 4 (or sometimes it is seven), she will have a birthday party and it will have an amazing cake with pirates on the bottom and princesses on top, and how all her friends are going to come ( then she lists all her friends [...]

Burlington Haul Video

Burlington Haul Video

*This is a sponsored post. So about a week ago, I was contacted by Burlington to do a post about the brand. They sent me a $100 gift card and instructed to visit the store and then do a little haul video based on what I got there. This is my first haul type of video, however instead of sitting in front the computer and showing the pieces like that, I decided to actually model them really quickly instead. Burlington stores are similar to other discount type of stores where you can find clothing and home decor items at 65% off department store prices. When I was shopping there, I found a pair of  amazing jeans ( not allowed to mention the brand) that would normally be over $160. They weren't in my size, but I contemplated buying them just to gift to someone who is size 2, bec[...]

Our Beach Days in Florida

Our Beach Days in Florida

The other day we were supposed to put together a storybook of a day for our music class. So instead of printing photos and glueing them to paper ( who has time for that), I put together a quick (and very basic) slideshow of our beach trip with friends.   I picked out some of the better photos to post here and since I already had the slideshow ready, I am publishing it as well. The dresses the girls are wearing are by Lourdes Kids and Lexi is sporting her favorite Star Babiators. Swimsuit is by Submarine Kids and the swim jacket is by Konfidence.   [...]

Lexi's 3rd Birthday Party Sneak Peek

Lexi's 3rd Birthday Party Sneak Peek

Just a little tease of what's to come! Lexi's gorgeous golden dress is by Chasing Fireflies.[...]

Christmas at Gaylord Palm Hotel and ICE Exhibit

Christmas at Gaylord Palm Hotel and ICE Exhibit

The other part of our Christmas experience in Orlando was a stay at Gaylord Palms where we have stayed before numerous times and a visit to the ICE exhibit. For those who have never heard of the exhibit, it's a big deal in Central Florida. A huge center full of ice sculptures and 9F weather in the middle of a hotel. We went to one years back before Lexi and it was fun, so we figured Lexi would get a kick out of it as well. This time they had an amazing Alpine Village with snowtubing, hot cocoa, Santa visit and a lot of activities. Since this was Lexi's VERY first experience with cold (and 9F is no joke), we made sure to dress her in an adorable pink Appaman coat and their white knit hat. It was so funny seeing her in winter gear for the first time. Kids are so cute bundled[...]

Legoland Trip for Christmas

Legoland  Trip for Christmas

Before time gets away from me, I wanted to write a bit about how we spent Christmas last year. We had planned to get away somewhere cold and snowy for the first time, but after our West Coast Travels in October and the overwhelming amount of work for the holidays, we just couldn't fathom planning another trip. So staying close to home is what we decided to do. We visited ICE exhibit ( later on that) and went to Legoland Florida on Christmas Day. I couldn't believe how not busy it was, considering Disney is packed during those times, so it was a nice change for us. This was our first visit to Legoland  and I honestly didn't see how it would be good for a almost three year old who doesn't know what Lego is. To my surprise, it had more attractions for her age/height than the other parks we[...]

Catching up on Holidays

Catching up on Holidays

These have been sitting in my drafts for months now. I considered not publishing them at all, since it's been so long, but they are all ready so what the heck. Otherwise I am just going to resume blogging from this point on, not trying to catch up on things (with the exception of some travel posts). Starting with Lexi's Princess and Pirate birthday after these holiday posts. So photos from our Halloween adventures. Age reference: 2.5 years. 1st Trick Or Treating   Trick Or Treating at the Gardens    [...]

Today's Inspiration: Life Rules

Today's Inspiration: Life Rules

A while ago I found a list of life rules by a famous person. I loved some of them so much that I saved them as a blog post but never published. As I am working on some posts for the blog, I thought it would be nice to share some of my favorite rules that I try to live by, need a reminder of sometimes or agree with. Hope you enjoy them as much as I did. (Some numbers are missing because I kept only the rules I wanted a reminder or/agreed with.) 2. When in doubt, just take the next small step. 6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree. 9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck. 11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present. 16. Life is too short for long pity parties. Get busy living, or get busy dying. 17. You can get throug[...]

New Prenatal Screening by Natera

New Prenatal Screening by Natera

 This survey was sponsored by the new Panorama™ NIPT, created by Natera, that enables women in the first trimester of pregnancy to be screened for more than a dozen leading genetic diseases as early as 9 weeks gestation. Additionally, the test has an optional gender screening that is >99% accurate.  Because the test is performed with a routine blood draw, it does not come with a risk of miscarriage that more invasive tests (like amniocentesis) carry. Hey, guys, this is another sponsored post. Things have been insane with the holidays, so my regular programming is on hold :) So Natera sent me this infographic on women's attitudes towards the journey of pregnancy. It reminded me of my own journey through the pregnancy and everything that I shared on this blog and how excited and anxio[...]

Nursing Apparel For All Shapes

Nursing Apparel For All Shapes

A new nursing line of apparel, Kinwolfe, has teamed up with bloggers and website to help them spread the word out throughout the breastfeeding community. Kinwolfe is a brand that is taking a very different approach to nursing styles. All clothing is loose and flowy even in the smallest sizes. The items are made of silk which combined with the flowy properties of the clothing makes it the most comfortable nursing apparel ever. I just spent the whole day in m dress without taking it off. The styles are designed to flatter any new mom regardless of her size or shape. The flowy fabrics hide imperfections and postpartum bellies. These clothes are meant for real breastfeeding women, not just naturally thin bodies. As a new company they are launching the line via Kickstarter [...]

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

Want to see our Halloween Night Photoshoot? Click here! It was our first time at Mickey's Halloween Party with Lexi. The one and only time we had been to one was with our friends years before we had Lexi and it was an interesting expereince. This time we were excited to see how different it would be now that we are parents. It was certainly different. :) First of all, the 7 pm start time was suddenly a challenge, especially on those days without a nap. We did all we could to get Lexi to nap but she was just WAY to excited to be in Orlando to relax. So she stayed up full of energy until we were all dressed and got into the Disney bus. We made quite a spectacle while walking through the lobby to get to the Disney bus stop. People were stopping to look at us, children were running up. [...]

My Little Kitchen Helper

My Little Kitchen Helper

I know that I've slacked in the department of product reviews since getting busier, but I am hoping to fix that in the near future and trickle out reviews of some of my favorite things or at least compile them into the TRIED and TRUE posts. This is going to be more of a story of how our life evolved with the product than an actual review, but in so writing about it, you will get a good idea whether you might enjoy this product as much as we did or not. This particular item has sneakily made its way into our life in more ways than I anticipated. We had featured a Kitchen Helper on Daily Mom, right at the time when I was struggling to keep Lexi occupied while I cooked. I had also heard good things about it from MULTIPLE people. So I thought it was a worth product to try and see if it s[...]

Family Halloween: Frozen (Surprise! Surprise!)

Family Halloween: Frozen (Surprise! Surprise!)

So obviously, our Halloween costumes were Frozen themed. Obviously because what girl doesn't want to dress up like Elsa for Halloween? And what parent doesn't want to be their children's supporting cast in the fantasy of being their favorite character? After repeatedly asking Alexis what she wants to be for Halloween, we have surrendered to the standard and typical answer of many 2 year olds. ELSA! So 2 weeks before our Mickey's No-So-Scary Halloween party, we went in search of family Halloween costumes. Surprisingly, no one was offering Kristoff costumes aside from really expensive and not-so-good-looking etsy options. Eventually, we found all of our costumes on DHgate.com (directly from China, ya'll), which is where we will be ordering all our costumes from now on. Custom made to size[...]

Pumpkin Patch 2014

Pumpkin Patch 2014

Remember our first Pumpkin Patch trip? It was funny, and pretty cool, and not what I expected. We go plenty of fun pictures of Lexi but not the greatest family pictures. I meant to reshoot, but life intervenes. Fast foward to this year. Guess what? We got plenty of cute Lexi photos, but our family photos had a great church building in the background. Hahahaha! We just can't win! At least we all look cool in our sunglasses :) After this I said I would come back in the morning and re-shoot the other way so that the building wasn't ruining the shot ( because of the position of the sun we weren't able to turn out and get well exposed photos), but you know what? I am learning. Learning that my overachieving selectively perfectionist self doesn't usually get the time for a re-do[...]

Swan Birthday: The Pool Party

Swan Birthday: The Pool Party

After the cake was finished, half the guests had to go home and put their kids to sleep and the other half stayed for the pool part of the party. Which was almost my favorite, since things were  now relaxed. It felt like any normal day at the pool, except that the Lexis were dressed alike and there was a photographer taking pictures :) And yay, I didn't think I would actually finish blogging about the party, but I did :) It was sweet to go through the photos again. Enjoy the last post and the photos. 2nd Birthday Party: Planning, Party Favors, Decor 2nd Birthday Party: Party Outfits 2nd Birthday: The Morning Of First Birthday posts start here Photos are taken and edited by MM Works Photography   [...]

Swan Birthday: Birthday Cake

Swan Birthday: Birthday Cake

Part II is all about the cake. We used the same amazing European bakery for the cake as on her first birthday. The cakes they make taste so authentic, not overly sweet and with such a subtle soft cream. Since we were doing everything last minute, we opted for a simple cake that we [attempted to] attached a tutu to. It was so funny watching the girls blow out the candles. Alexa was too timid to go anywhere near the people at first and Lexi didn't know how to blow well yet so she was spitting all over the place (Cringe! Sorry, guys!). Finally the candle was blown out and then Lexi asked for it again and again ( we told her we would do it at home). Everyone clapped, she looked very proud. Alexa did get a chance to blow out a candle too later when there weren't so many people around. [...]

Bok Tower and Gardens Trip

Bok Tower and Gardens Trip

This is what I call a Photo Post. I put these together when inspiration strikes, when I feel like I need a little bit more beauty in the moment, when I want reminisce, when I am down, when I am lazy and don't want to write a long post, when it's late and that's all I have the energy for, when it's something I've been meaning to share for a while. There are many reasons for me to work on a post that lacks words and instead appeals to the visual person in me. This photo post is from the time when Lexi just turned 2. It was shortly after her birthday that we decided to take a trip to one of the most beautiful places I've been to, Bok Tower and Gardens in Central Florida. It's a truly unique place in Florida and I've always wanted to bring Lexi back here, the place where her dad and I to[...]

Swan Birthday Party, Part II

Swan Birthday Party, Part II

In the second part of the Birthday, the entertainer arrived and it was one of the best decisions I've ever made for a birthday party ( aside from having a photographer). Kids LOVED it. They got animal balloons, they played games, sang songs, and had a blast. Next year we will have princess visit the party. Enjoy the pictures. Photos are taken and edited by MM Works Photography}   2nd Birthday Party: Planning, Party Favors, Decor 2nd Birthday Party: Party Outfits 2nd Birthday: The Morning Of First Birthday posts start here         2nd Birthday Party: Planning, Party Favors, Decor 2nd Birthday Party: Party Outfits 2n[...]

Stuff Lexi Says: 30-33 Months Edition

Stuff Lexi Says: 30-33 Months Edition

Funny and cute sayings from 30-33 months ( 2.5 and up) Read previous editions of "Stuff Lexi Says": 24-27 Months 27-30 Months When reading about a heart and it pumping blood: Lexi: "Pump like the one daddy used to blow up dinosaur pool!" Waking up: "I want to dress up Minnie!" Me: You want to play dress up with the Minnie doll? Lexi: That's a great idea, Momma! Come on, follow me! While playing school: "Um, Mister Mama Teacher, can you read me a book and open a snack?" Lexi: "Boobie is all sandy because someone put sand in the boobie." Me: Who did that? Lexi: Grandma? Noooo!!!! Caden? (her friend) Daddy: "But first give me a kissy. Give me a kiss and I'll turn the light on in the bathroom" Lexi: "Daddy  you get a kiss on the foot[...]

Swan Birthday Party, Part I

Swan Birthday Party, Part I

I realize it has been over a year since her birthday. There has been so much travel and events since then that blogging about has been pushed back. But now as she is approaching her 3rd birthday and looking back at the party, it was FABULOUS. I loved it and she looks adorable in her Swan outfit with her matching best friend. I just have to finish blogging about it, timing be damned. I will keep it short and just leave the photos. The first part of the Birthday Party was guests pouring in and children playing with toys we brought out as well as snacking. The tea sandwiches we made were killed within 30 minutes (they were yummy sandwiches) and we had to resort to ordering pizza to keep the guests fed. :) Other than that, the first part was just a lot of talking and playing on the pa[...]

Stuff Lexi Says: 27-30 months Edition

Stuff Lexi Says: 27-30 months Edition

To me this was the cutest age for sayings, because of how funny the sentence structure sometimes was and the words she used. Then at exactly 2.5 years she suddenly started talking with normal adult sentences with proper endings but also using off the wall complicated words which made it funny too, but not as funny as butchered words and sentences of 27-30 months stage. Some of these might not be funny being read, as it was also about the stage of development as well as gesturing and voice that made it so cute and funny. So behold "The Stuff Lexi says: 27-30 months Edition" Note: She calls herself YAYA, a vestige from when she couldn't pronounce Lexi, but it stuck as her nickname. After falling down, while I was watering flowers, I was hoping she would just get up and conti[...]

The Importance of Knowing Your Child's Personality

The Importance of Knowing Your Child's Personality

A few months ago, while nursing Lexi to sleep, I was on a Facebook Gentle Parenting group reading someone's post about their daughter. I think she was refering to her daughter being an extrovert and her being an introvert and the difficulty surrounding her parenting due to that. After reading her post, something clicked in my mind. The way she was describing her daughter seemed very much like Lexi: high excitement, high energy, non-stop movement unless she is doing something that requires her attention, constantly needing attention, not playing on her own. I had always thought Alexis was high needs in the best possible way when she was little but some things just didn't jive. She wasn't sensitive in a way high needs children tend to be, she just needed a lot of attention and was very[...]

Self-Calming Technique for Toddlers

Self-Calming Technique for Toddlers

I don't know if this will work for everyone, but we have come up with a calming technique that really helps diffuse an upset that is about to turn into a tantrum. Around 18 months things started getting difficult with Lexi. We hadn't experienced any tantrums at that point, because we, for the most part, allow our daughter to make her own decisions, or give her options that are acceptable. However, that age (18-24 months) was the most difficult in terms of managing all the new desires and emotions. She was finally capable of many things with many wants, but at the same time she was still too small to do other things or understand many concepts like time. She was asserting her independence  and in many way that led to her getting upset. One day Andrew tried to show Lexi how to [...]