10 Minute Meal Under $5: Creamy Corn, Roasted Pepper and Mixed Lentil Soup

Monday, April 14, 2014

We try our hardest to make fresh healthy meals daily in our household and even though I am home with Declan every day right now, it's a rare occasion that I have more than 10 minutes of free time to make dinner. Thank goodness my hubby loves to cook! We have found it helpful over these first couple of months with Declan to have a few quick and healthy meals always on hand. A few weeks ago my Aunt shared this super easy and delicious meal favorite with my mom. After my mom made it she immediately called my sister and I and said, "we had to make this soup." Believe it or not, all it calls for are these two products and it's done in under 10 minutes. First cook the melodions blend according to package and simply and the soup! I feel like I'm cheating it's so easy. Thank goodness for Trader Joe's!

Ladies Who Brunch!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Getting posts up with a newborn is near impossible and I see bloggers do it all of the time, so cheers to you ladies for getting the job done! I'm currently rocking my baby to sleep with my foot will he is in is cradle and I have the pandora baby station playing (a change from my usual motivational upbeat playlist) all while typing this post. So, I'm not going to lie, I feel like super mom at the moment.

Last weekend one of my favorite gals was in town from Chicago, so it gave my girlfriends and I a great excuse to all get together. It also gave everyone a chance to meet Declan if they hadn't already.  We met for brunch at the beautiful Viceroy Hotel in Santa Monica and then enjoyed cocktails under a cabana poolside. It was a beautiful and perfect day surrounded by some of my dearest girlfriends. I captured the day with my new Canon Rebel DSLR . I am so excited to take my own high quality pictures for the blog now!

Music Inspired Nursery

Monday, March 10, 2014

We had so much fun creating our nursery. It was a lot of work, but totally worth it. I started by making a nursery inspiration board on my pinterest page and then went from there. At first I had a hard time deciding if I wanted the room to have more of a vintage or modern feel to it. I loved both so much that I decided to mix them both into the room. One thing we knew for certain was we wanted a music inspired theme. Music plays an important part in both my husband and I's lives and we started exposing Declan to music when he was still in the womb. It was also important to me that the nursery was soft and serene and the crisp aqua walls with touches of white and grey helped create just that. Everything else just fell into place. I couldn't be happier with how it all turned out.

Jenny Lind Crib: Target
Dresser: Craigs List
Handle Hardware (on dresser): Anthropologie
Bedding: Serena and Lily
Storage Baskets: Land of Nod
Diaper Cart: Ikea
Sheepskin Rug: Ikea
Changing Pad Cover: Land of Nod
Record Player: Urban Outfitters
Glider: Target
Moroccan Poof: One Kings Lane
Rug: West Elm
The World is Your Oyster Print: Rifle Paper Co.
Love is The Music of The Soul Print: HomeGoods
Curtains: World Market
Vintage Sheet Music: My husbands from childhood
Frames: Michaels 
Monkey and Lamb Knit Dolls: Bla Bla Kids

Postpartum Survival For Baby and Mama

Friday, February 28, 2014

When I became pregnant I had several friends email me their very detailed registry lists of everything possible you would need the first year with baby. What everyone fails to tell you is what's needed to survive those first few weeks after the baby comes. After many endless nights researching everything from baby carriers to diaper pails, I am now using only a handful of such items routinely during these first few weeks. As a result, I thought it might be helpful to discuss what REALLY is helping me get through these first few weeks (although my husband is not listed, he has no doubt been the most helpful).

1. SwaddleMe: Declan manages to break out of almost all of our swaddles so these swaddleme wraps have been very useful especially in the middle of the night when you don't know up from down.
2. Honest Company Healing Balm: Newborns have all kinds of rashes and Declan keeps scratching his face no matter how many times I clip his nails. This balm heals everything! We love it.
3. 4 Moms RockaRoo: This is our # 1 survival item. Declan loves this new swing by 4 Moms. I love how little space it takes up and it is so quiet. Declan falls asleep in it too, which makes it even more awesome!
4. Avent Pacifier: I introduced the pacifier right away (I wasn't sure if I was screwing ourselves) and he took to it instantly.  It soothes him in almost every situation. That makes it a must have, especially when all you want is your baby to stop crying.
5. Uppa Baby Vista Stroller with Bassinet: We spent a lot of time researching strollers.  This resulted in several trips to the baby stores to try them out. I couldn't be happier with our choice. The bassinet attachment is great. We walk right out of the house and Declan will last several hours sleeping or just chilling.  
6. QT Intimates Nursing Bra: This bra is so comfortable and wears great under all of my clothes.  Not to mention it's only $18.
7. Earth Mama Angel Baby Natural Nipple Butter: I don't know what women did before nipple butter. This stuff is a life savor.
8. Lily Pads: These silicone pads are perfect for the nursing mom on the go.
9. Nike Free: Going for a walk every day is what keeps me sane through the afternoons. A little fresh air and gentle exercise is great for Mama and Baby.
10. Zico Coconut Water: Keeping hydrated is key to keeping milk supply up. I down coconut water every day, which has natural electrolytes.
11. Epsom Salt : My body felt like it was hit by a car after labor. Finding time to take a relaxing bath and soak in some Epsom salt can be extremely helpful.

That's Amore!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day from our little love bug to all of you. Thank you for all of your love and support as readers, friends and family. I will be adding more posts on motherhood now that our little peanut is here and can't wait to hear what all of you have to say. I hope your day is surrounded by all kinds of love and your hearts are full.


Declan Miles: New Born Photo Shoot

Thursday, February 13, 2014

We are happy to announce that on February 3rd we welcomed our son Declan Miles McGinnis into this world at 5 lbs., 13 oz., & 18 inches long. He surprised us arriving 3 weeks early and what a special surprise it was! Declan was ready to meet his Mommy and Daddy from his early arrival to his very quick delivery. We checked into the hospital at 2pm and he was born at 8:55pm. He is such a good and happy baby. It's unbelievable how much you can love such a little peanut. Our hearts are so full and I can't imagine my life without either of my boys in it.

Declan was very lucky to already meet both sets of Grandparents and my sister, his Auntie Amy. My sister is an amazing photographer and she captured some beautiful new born moments of Declan. If you ask me she should be doing this for a living. Thank you Auntie Amy for giving us such a priceless gift that we will cherish forever.

{Declan is smiling because his talented cousin Eliza made him this beautiful blanket and he loves it}

Style Staples for Accessorizing Throughout Pregnancy

Friday, January 31, 2014

One of the challenges of dressing throughout pregnancy is trying to keep some sense of style even though your body is going through a major physical, daily, transformation. I've found the easiest way to dress was to keep my style simple with basics like tanks, leggings and cotton dresses and then adding a little bit of style and flare with accessories. This keeps your look pulled together and you aren't wasting money on pieces you will outgrow or even need after pregnancy. It's also nice to treat yourself every now and then, throughout those nine months, to something feminine and fun that will make you feel good about yourself.

1. A trendy hat
2. A fun shade of nail polish
3. Statement cuff
4. Stylish necklace that wears well with anything
5. Cute casual tote for every day
6. Chambray shirt for layering 
7. Stylin Sunglasses
8. Comfy sneakers you can dress up or down
9. Bright lip color for when you need a pick me up
10. Cardigan to layer with everything (I live in this one)

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