Hey There, Want to Win Some Freshly Picked Moccasins?

I’m glad to be back and thought what better way to kick off a welcome back than to give away a pair of moccasins (soft soled) to one of you guys that have stuck around with me this whole time!

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Just a sampling of our ever growing mocc stash!

Boy to girl I think Freshly Picked moccasins are perfect. Of course colors can sway the shoe to more ‘girlie’ or more ‘boyish’. I think they were one of the best investments I made in my daughter’s wardrobe, because they are a quality shoe and they can cross that girl/boy barrier. I was certain that I would have another girl, and I could pass her wardrobe to baby 2. WRONG! But the moccs are something that my boy can rock, that his big sister wore previously.

Little Miss had the tiniest feet, she wore size 1 moccs at 7 months! Meanwhile her brother is barely squeezing his tubby little toes into those size 1s at 3 months! The staggering of the shoes will eventually lead them to both be walkers in  the same size shoes, but I’m slowly building up his mocc stash so he can have some of his own things his big sister hasn’t worn.

The Pros

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The shoes fit fat baby feet. Or skinny baby feet. E had the skinnest little tiny girl feet, her brother is the exact opposite with his square chubby feet but the shoes still fit! I think it’s the shape and the elastic band that holds the shoes on that make them versatile for all baby feet sizes and shapes. That same elastic also keeps them on the toes!

They are super easy to pull on, and slightly difficult for kids to get off! E couldn’t remove them for the longest time, I knew when I put her in the backseat she’d have her shoes on when we arrived at our destination. And little babies cannot just kick them off by rubbing their feet together in that adorable little baby way.

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FP provides generous sizing. Most shoes give you maybe a quarter inch or less ‘wiggle room’ between sizes. Dependent upon the size you can get as much as ¾ of an inch! This handy little feature allows your kiddo to rock their mocc for longer. When you are paying the big bucks for a shoe this is an important feature!

I bought E a pair of hard soled sneakers around her second bday. She ran so funny in them. They didn’t bend quite right for her to run in, she didn’t seem to run as fast or be near as comfortable when playing as she did in FP moccs. I attribute that to the soft sole on the moccs. The soft sole makes it easier for a toddler to run and learn to walk. We wear them to the park/playground/travel/dressup you name it she’s worn them. Literally.

They are a versatile shoe. As I said before they can be worn for any occasion. E has worn them to the White House and the playground. With a fluffy fancy dress or a pair of denim shorts! They have that casual yet sophisticated look about them, and I love that about a toddler/baby shoe!

The Cons

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Price, of course everyone talks about the price. It’s a quality shoe y’all (see I’ve been back in Texas). They are made to last, E wore the h e double hockey sticks out of her gold size 5s. She has been wearing them for about 6 months and one day she wore a hole right through the shoe, but  gold was our go to color and I expect she would have grown out of most any other shoe in that time frame. But I am willing to contradict myself here, I have paid equal price for a toddler shoe that began cracking and the sole separated after 2 wears!

The colors are a positive and a negative imo. The fun vibrant colors have a tendency to stain little toes, however a quick scrub in the bath will take the stain away. The color do make it fun to match specific outfits or for fun occasions. Or you can grab a neutral for your little and they can rock it with anything and everything!

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Don’t get them wet, as with any leather you should steer clear of rain puddles and swimming pools. This makes them less than ideal in climates where snow is frequent BUT now we are back in Texas they will be perfect year round! We have tried them out in the snow and rain and washing the car or hopping in the pool (last 2 cough cough DAD) and they get a little well, crunchy. The leather also has a tendency to shrink a bit once it’s gotten wet.

Soooo here’s what y’all have all been waiting for: YOU (that’s right you) could win a pair of SOFT SOLED Freshly Picked moccasins, in your color choice! It’s an awesome chance to build up your #moccstash and get a pair of moccs under the tree in time for Christmas!

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I was given a pair of moccs for this review, and a pair can be yours too! Just enter in the widget below and stay tuned for the winner!

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I’m Baaaaaack.

todolistI’ve been taking a break. I seem to be doing that a lot lately, BUT in my defense I just had a baby.  3 months ago… transitioning from one kid to two was no joke. My delivery didn’t go exactly as planned and baby O arrived a few weeks before I anticipated which threw me for a huge loop! After an extended recovery period I’m feeling more like myself and getting a handle on this mom of 2 thing. I’ve even ventured out into public with the 2 kids SOLO not once, not twice, but 3 times! That my friends is an accomplishment.

Things that have been happening since we last spoke: I had a baby (duh) potty training is a thorn in my side. She was doing so good, and we sold our house and moved into a townhouse. After a couple months we welcomed her baby brother into the world and her whole life was turned upside down and we suffered another set back. She regressed and quit telling me she had to go and would just go. We moved AGAIN this time across the country to a new state and a new house and she just couldn’t cope. We have fully regressed back to a diaper and she has her moments, but mostly she isn’t interested anymore. I hope that we can get back on track but, we have a few really good days and then we have poop days. Literally take your diaper off and take a dump in the corner of your room days (this is an unfortunately true story). E learned to escape her room quite awhile ago now shortly after she began climbing the baby gate. She just army crawled across my room one night and climbed up the bench at the foot of my bed and I hear a sweet little ‘hi mom I climbed my room’ yup. So there’s that. All the while I was planning the most complicated move of my life. Sure movers came to pack out my house and ship my boxes across country, but I had to plan to not have all of our goods for  2 weeks. And to no sh*t be trapped in the car with a 2 year old, newborn, and an aging dog who needs to pee every 2 hours. It took us 5 days to make it from DC to Dallas!

Back to that baby thing: he is everything right now. He loves to be held ALL THE TIME, and really only by his mama! All the squish and the smell of a newborn, I swear I don’t even care that I haven’t really slept in months. I can’t remember so many things about E being a babe it was so long ago. There have been so many sleepless nights between here and there and I can barely remember what life was like before she started walking and talking! She’s an opinionated little butt and took forever to warm up to him. I don’t understand how all these people post sweet pics of their kids ‘loving’ each other from the start. My husband says it’s all the way people want life to be perceived, all they need is one sweet moment to plaster all over social media and make you think they are a big happy family. Regardless it broke my heart she wasn’t all about him as soon as we brought him home. I expected her to immediately love him and accept him into the pack. My dogs were more accepting when we brought O home than E. They sniffed him and kissed his head and were like come on in guy, you can’t be worse than the girl one. Home girl was like um no ma’am. I don’t know who this little crying baby is you’re carrying around but imma need my mom back. Seriously, it took her a month to even acknowledge him. She would hold him and investigate him, but she’s like whatever. That was super stressful for me, I had visions of love and hugs and kisses. And help bringing diapers or just general oogling him, she wanted NONE of it. I’m happy to say now she loves him and wants to hold him and kiss him and bring clean diapers and share snacks and toys! But it was a long road to get here.

Must Haves for Baby 2

As my due date fast approaches YIKES! I thought I’d put together a list of my fav must haves for baby boy!

Aden + Anais swaddle blankets: I love(d) these for E. They are huge in comparison to most blankets making it easy to swaddle a bigger baby or an older baby. You can use it for a nursing cover, a blanket in the car, a ground cover in a pinch, picnic blanket, something to change your baby on. E still uses hers at night and when it’s chilly out for rides in the car. A lot of people are wary of purchasing such an ‘expensive’ blanket when there are so many other options available. In my opinion these are one of the best investments I made! You can find them at many of your local retailers, but be aware they aren’t all the same quality which will reflect in their price. The more expensive ones will be softer and you’ll be able to tell the difference, while the ones from ‘box’ stores will be not quite the same caliber. Don’t get me wrong they’re still amazing blankets but it’s not quite the same!

4mom MamaRoo: I swear I didn’t see/hear about these with E. I went to the store bought a similarly priced swing and it worked wonders for her. BUT since she swung it to its death we were in need of a new swing for the little guy. So it only made sense to hop on the bandwagon and snag this one. While reviews vary I’m hoping he loves it.

Noodle and Boo (everything): Sooo I found this stuff several months ago, and I fell in love with the way it smells! And have implemented it into E’s bath routine ever since. They have cleansing cloths for the days when baby doesn’t need a bath or can’t have one yet due to the whole umbilical cord stump being attached. The lotion makes baby’s (or toddler’s) skin oh so soft and I can’t even describe the soft sweet smell that the whole line provides. It smells like I want a baby to smell!bringing home baby boy

Bringing Home Baby Outfit: There are a ton of options out there. Literally a million, I was having the hardest time deciding what to bring baby home in. I want it to be an heirloom quality piece, not too trendy, adorable, comfy and appropriate for his September birth. A lot of the things I loved, my hubby thought were too feminine and wouldn’t agree on.  And then I found these little numbers. They are 100% GOTS organic certified with coconut buttons and dyed with ingredients free of synthetic chemicals and toxic irritants! I mean who doesn’t want something soft, organic and natural to be the first thing to touch their little munchkin’s skin? The only problem I’ll have is what color to choose!

Carseat: Speaking of bringing baby home. A carseat is a MUST! How else are you gonna drive home your little bundle of joy? In your lap Britney a la 2006? Not on 495 people! I am currently torn between a convertible carseat or an infant. My choices are here and here. We have the Peg Perego for E and I love it, but she didn’t start using it til she was over a year old. I’m nervous about the whole 5-70 lb aspect of it, so I’m still on the fence. Some part of me can’t justify spending the money on an infant seat, since the life of them is so short!  Update: The hubs decided to have an opinion. So we bought an infant seat for now! He should be able to use it for (hopefully) about a year and then we can move him into a convertible seat. We went with the Graco Click Connect 30, for safety ratings, cost efficiency and because E had the same type and we can use her stroller and car seat base!

Diapers: uhhh duh like I should even have to say this. BUT my fav for newborns are the Pampers Swaddlers! I love that they have the wetness indicator and I pretty much used this brand and style until we moved on up to 2s. At the hospital we were given Huggies but for some reason I just didn’t loooove them on a tiny babe as much as the Swaddlers. And as E got older I became a loyal Huggies lady. And at Target if you purchase 2 boxes of select diapers this week get a $10 gift card for your next purchase!

Wipes: I used the Pampers Sensitive wipes for E. They are soft and seem to clean better to me than any other brand I tried. The Huggies brand just seemed so rough like it’d chap your butt, and if I don’t want a chapped butt why would my baby?

Butt Paste: Yes I call it butt paste judge. Desitin is by far my favorite, it was recommended by E’s doc when she had a gnarly rash on her rump several months back. We were told it’s even better than prescription strength stuff y’all! I have tried natural holistic organic blah blah and they just don’t work. When in doubt use what you know will get the job done. There is nothing like your babe suffering because you refuse to use anything ‘unnatural’.

Sleep: I’m going to be blatantly honest here. I’d prefer a crib for baby boy BUT we are moving approximately 2 months post birth, and the room in our rental is sizably smaller than the house we just sold. I fit E’s crib, a swing, changing table, glider/ottoman combo along with 2 dressers and king sized bed, a vanity etc in my house. The room in our townhouse there is still space for all our bedroom furniture, BUT some massive rearranging is going to have to be done in order to make a bassinet and glider fit in there. Not to mention the fact movers will come pack out my house a few days before we move and I will be DRIVING (ok riding) cross country with a newborn, toddler, and 2 dogs. So I’m still hunting for the perfect bassinet/co sleeper for this nugget. Update: After talking with my sis in law I was recommended the Chicco Lullago! I’ve placed my order and can’t wait to see how it works out! It is a ‘travel bassinet’ so it will make it easy to break down and take with us on the go!

White Noise: I need white noise in my life, I cannot sleep with the whir of a fan or the ac. And let’s face it if the baby is sleeping in my room he’s gonna need to block out some of my loud coughing or dogs barking, husband snoring or E yelling from down the hall. Enter the sleep sheep. I actually am considering the fox bc it’s just darn adorable and matches the foxy/tribal theme of his nursery BUT we need noise. Constant

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Baby Book: This go round I stalked out baby books from the beginning of my pregnancy. I knew for certain I would be going with the brand Lucy Darling for boy or girl! Well it turns out it’s a boy and I love the animal book. It could be considered gender neutral if you like it for a girl or to give it as a shower gift! I loved these books so much because of how cute the illustrations are and they go up to several years after birth. It’s just one page per year but still! How sweet to have all those memories in ONE book!! And it has a little section for ‘before we met you’. Which is fun to be able to snap a maternity pic and put it in there for the little one to see later in life. And it prompted me to HAVE to take a pic.

Baby Monitor: Currently E has this monitor in her  room, I loved everything about it for the past 2+ years. It comes with a under mattress sensor, that made me feel safer knowing she was still breathing while she was asleep and I didn’t have to be that awkward creepy mom and go over and touch her or put a mirror under her nose to ensure that she was in fact still alive. With baby 2 well on his way, I really want to use that for him! I want to have that same reassurance that he is still alive and kicking even though he isn’t moving around like a toddler! This lead me to an new issue. E won’t have a monitor. Now that she sleeps in her own ‘big kid bed’ I need to be able to see what she is up to in the middle of the night. On occasion she wakes in the night and I don’t want her wandering around her room unattended! Enter this little gem. I scoured the internet for the best dual video monitor and this is what I found to be the ‘best’. Until we are ready take away the under the bed sensor for little guy, I can use just one monitor, and once he moves out of my room and into his own he can have his very own monitor on the same system as his big sister!

When planning for your 2nd or 4th were there items that were on your must have list? Feel free to share in the comments and let me know if I’ve missed anything!

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Gender Reveal Baby 2.0

freshlypickedmoccasinGuys, if you don’t follow me on Instagram I shared a photo this morning of what my life has been like. I have been buried under boxes for 2 days, with no internet and a very angry 2 year old, all the while being 6.5 months pregnant. #nightmare Sooo long story short I haven’t revealed baby twos gender or chosen a winner for the Freshly Picked giveaway until now….

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ALEAH M you win a pair of FP moccs of your choosing!


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And I’m having a boy! Which I’m super stoked about because now I will have one of each, and since the plan is no more kids…it’s awesome. I literally thought my hubs was going to pee his pants in the ultrasound room! I’m looking forward to advice and info on raising a boy and dressing him cutely, and sharing my finds along the way! (Awesome garland from Studio Mucci)

Baby 2: Pink or Blue?

freshly picked moccasinsY’all may remember a few weeks ago when I shared the big news that we are expecting baby 2! We used Freshly Picked moccasins to announce that we are gonna be parents again, what better way to announce the gender than use our favorite baby shoes (and add to our collection :))?  I’m so happy to announce Freshly Picked has teamed up with me for a giveaway! That’s right ladies (and gentlemen) a pair of the one and only Freshly Picked moccasins can be yours!

Susan began her company out of necessity in 2009, she was frustrated that she couldn’t find decent, well made baby shoes. The problem with most baby shoes is they don’t stay on and they just aren’t cute. She spent the entire summer breaking glass from old windows to scrap the aluminium for money. At the end of summer she had $200 in her pocket and Freshly Picked Moccasins were born. With each passing year Susan has helped her business grow, by adding new products and expanding her customer base.

Pros

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Freshly Picked moccs are pretty much my favorite baby shoes, EVER. We have tried brands and styles and honestly the moccasins are where it’s at for tiny new walking babes. They are hard to remove, even on 40 minute long rides in the backseat, rear-facing so I cannot prevent what is happening back there. Pretty much any other shoe I’ve put on my now toddler, has come flying off in under 15 minutes. Another great thing about these shoes is that they are soft soled leather or suede. They bend so easily for your little people to learn to walk, and the leather seems to grip well on most all surfaces. There has been a lot of research saying ‘barefoot’ walking is best to help your babe learn how to walk properly and correctly. The next best thing to being barefoot is soft sole shoes! I love how easy they are to clean. Freshly Picked now sells wipes and a suede kit to care for your shoes, but I usually wipe them down with a baby wipe for the leathers and use a kit I currently have to clean the suede. They look pretty much brand new after a cleaning! The quality of these is top notch, the leather is thick and tough and has made it through one kid and I know confidently that no matter the gender I can pass them on to my new babe.  And every time E has them on out in public she gets compliments out the waa-zoo. She’s worn them for so many special occasions and also for the casual errands or to run in the yard. I love all the colors and prints that Freshly Picked offers. Gender neutral options are great for when you don’t know the gender. Or maybe you don’t want to know! FP also offers colors for boys and girls, but really almost every color can be worn by either sex if styled right! I also want to mention I love the way sizing is done. Since the shoes are leather they can stretch a little to accommodate your babe when they are on the brim of growing out of them, AND they are pretty hard to trip on unlike traditional hard bottomed shoes.

Cons

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My only real negative after 2 years of wear is that you don’t want to get them wet. Like pretty much ever. Avoid puddles like the plague. I mean it’s pretty obvious, if you have leather bags or shoes yourself, why you don’t want to get leather wet. It can get hard and rough, and it can cause shrinkage. This happened to a pair of moccs we have, and after a lot of bending and flexing and stretching they were fine, but don’t let your kid run through the sprinkler or jump in a puddle in them. Another thing is that some of the shoes may stain toes; we have had certain colors that make E’s toes turn a funny color when her feet sweat. Any color comes off when she takes a bath, so it isn’t a big deal to me.

So now for the real reason you just read through the post: the giveaway! Freshly Picked is sponsoring this giveaway the winner will receive ONE (1) pair of moccasins in their choice of size and color. The giveaway will run for 2 weeks, and I will announce the gender of the baby and the winner on Monday June 9!

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Some of the photos in this blog post were used courtesy of Freshly Picked. I received a pair of moccasins in exchange for a review. All thoughts and opinions are mine and were not swayed in any way by Freshly Picked.

Boden Fall Preview

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You guys, Boden is having their sneak peek pre-order sale right now! They basically choose some of the best customers and share a preview of the next season’s upcoming line. AND since we all know I LOVE me some Boden, I got the inside eye! I picked out some of my favorites for E, who is almost rolling into Boden’s  18-24 size. If you are going to order, IMO Boden runs a tad big. She can still wear the 12-18 dresses I got her last summer! Soooo since fall is right around the corner, I clearly mean 6 months from now, I thought I’d share what I am pre-ordering for E, just in case you care or want your little to be twinsies this year…

Pretty Collar Jersey Dress: I’ve ordered this dress for the past 3 years, each time a new print comes out I snag it for E. It is really soft and can transition well through most all seasons, and they usually offer prints that can transcend seasons as well. Currently they are offering a bunny in sage or a flower print in light gray. I might be ordering both…

Ribbed Tights: I love love love these tights. Boden makes such amazing colors that match their clothing as well as pretty much every other brand of clothing. Being a girl I love her wearing dresses, (while I can still dress her) and even in the cooler months she can wear them with these tights! They are thick and soft and as long as she can fit in them, they’ve held up well. I plan on snagging all 4 plain colorways as well as a fun patterned tight in bird and floral print!

Hat and Mitten Set: Last year I grabbed E one of these cute floppy bunny hats and mitten set. I’m not going to lie she has a rather large noggin (it runs on my husband’s side of the family people!) so I have to size the hat up in order to make sure it lasts the entire season. This causes the mittens to fall off her tiny delicate hands. HOWEVER the hat is to die adorable, and matches this year’s jacket!

Cosy Quilted Reversible Jacket: The first year E was alive I couldn’t force myself to buy her a coat. Luckily I had a friend who gave E a warm puffy coat so I got away without getting her one. I had been eyeballing the Boden cosy quilted jacket since I was pregnant with her! So last year I bit the bullet and snagged this little number! I ordered it a size up and rolled the sleeves back, it still fits, but I’m not sure she will make it through the winter. It is forgiving enough to layer under, and warm enough I don’t worry about her freezing when we meander about outdoors in February. This year they made it even better, it’s REVERSIBLE now! One side is a solid color and the other is a fun print! Needless to say I’m torn about which color to order the pink or blue…

Soft Muslin Blankets: If you follow along you’ll know I’m pregnant. I’m not telling the gender yet (I have a super fun way to do it, duuuh) but these swaddles are great for baby. I’m showing the girly print here because well I love it most! They do have 2 other prints one is boyish and the other could go either way. I love these so much because of the sheer size of them! They are bigger than the usual swaddle, making it easier to swaddle a bigger baby. We still use the ones E has for picnic blankets, nursing cover, or for car rides when it’s chilly out. They also make a great cape in a pinch!

Sock Box: I love everything British, and Boden basically encompasses that. Which is why I am ordering these socks…E  has a pack from last year and they still fit! They are pretty much your basic baby/toddler sock with the grippy bottoms so your little walker won’t slip.

Fisherman’s Cable Knit Sweater: I died when I saw this little number. Literally it’s gender neutral and so British. Again whether baby dos is boy or girl this will work for this little nugget’s first winter! AAANNND for the win E can get one too and MATCH. Yes don’t worry I’ve been planning on matching/coordinating outfits for my baes!

I want to point out a few things: Boden isn’t expecting the fall line to ship until July, but they will ship it as the merch arrives! I’m only sharing my picks for my girl, they obviously have sizing from newborn to grown woman/man. If you aren’t interested in children’s clothing Boden is positively British, and amazing. I own several pieces and they are worth every penny people. They are also going to put a ‘hold’ on your card for the amount of your impending purchase. They aren’t going to CHARGE you, just say those funds are unavailable, a lot of people are butt hurt about this, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable. If you order $500 worth of stuff and you don’t end up having the funds available when they are ready to ship it can cause problems for Boden. Do they go ahead and ship the merch or do they hold onto it and let you know that your card declined? Needless to say I don’t really think it’s too big of a deal. So here are the deats you’ve been waiting for. The site you need to visit in order to see the preview is:

http://www.bodenpreview.com/

and the coupon code you should put in at checkout to save a whopping 20% (this is one of Boden’s biggest discounts y’all) is: 7D4N. If you go to the checkout first and then add the code in, it’ll show you all the pricing at the discounted price. Another big thing is they are offering free shipping and returns! Typically Boden charges you $10 for shipping, so basically by ordering before May 24 you are winning.