Christmas Festivities

I can’t believe it… Christmas has come and gone! We spent so much time preparing and it was over in the blink of an eye. Between our families, we spent three days celebrating four Christmases. Talk about craziness. While I’m sad that it’s all over, I’m so happy to be able to get Blaire back into her regular routine. Traveling means either shorter naps at odd times, late bed times and less sleep for everyone. And no one likes less sleep!

We spend Christmas Eve celebrating with my family and my mom’s dad (at their house, an hour away) with a huge lunch! Blaire was sooo excited about the first gift she opened, a stuffed Elmo. I am SO excited about Jason & I’s gift… a new Canon T3i. I’m so excited to learn how to use it and start taking some amazing photos! Later that night, we changed gears to celebrate my birthday with my family and friends at my parent’s house with pizza and cake. We tried something new this year and rushed back to town so we could go to mass at 10PM. Blaire made it through until communion, and we had to leave right after to avoid a giant meltdown.

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Christmas morning, Blaire was SO excited about the stuffed pig Santa brought her. In her stocking was the “holiday version” of her beloved dolly. She actually screamed when Jason pulled it out of her stocking for her. I’m SO glad we got it on camera because it was so sweet. We spent the morning and early afternoon with Jason’s parents and brother, before heading an hour away to my grandparent’s house to celebrate with my dad’s side of the family. My cousin has a daughter, Elaine, who is almost two months old. She is so cute. We were able to get a photo of Elaine, Blaire and our Grandpa (their Great Grandpa) together on the couch and it’s so cute. We also got a group photo of the great grandkids. It was so fun to see them all together. We played lots of games, and stayed there pretty late. We got lucky and Blaire slept the whole way home!

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We had a Christmas party with some friends on Friday night. Their son is just two months older than Blaire (his name is James and he is Blaire’s boyfriend), so it makes it much easier for us to stay there past Blaire’s bedtime. It’s usually as easy and putting her in his swing, somewhere away from the crowd and she’ll sleep until we’re ready to go! ;)

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Saturday we drove a few hours to Jason’s Aunt & Uncle’s house to celebrate with his dad’s family. Blaire got to meet lots of cousins! She loved making the rounds with everyone and provided quite the entertainment all day! This is usually the only time of the year when all of the family is together with some of them in Florida and some 3-4 hours away from where we live in Iowa. It was nice to get a picture of Blaire with all of her second cousins. While we were out of town, we finished off our night with a trip to the mall and dinner. I was SO excited because we stopped to eat at the same place we ate two years ago when we were there for our marriage prep class! And it was just as good as it was then. ;) Blaire partied so hard that she slept the entire way home.

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Blaire is now a pro at opening gifts! got SO many toys, so now we’ll spend the new few days getting everything organized and put away. …Like I said, I’m sad it’s over, but I feel so much less stressed knowing that we made it through and that Blaire can get back to her regular routine. It’s rough when she only gets an hour nap at a random time. How were your holidays? Are they crazy and hectic, or easy and relaxing? xo

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Blaire: 10 Months

Our little girl turned 10 Months Old on Christmas! Only two more months and this little girl will be ONE YEAR OLD?! AHH! Blaire now has three teeth and is just a babbling machine. Her two favorite words are still dada and mama. We also swear she said Elmo when she opened up her Elmo on Christmas Eve. She is the sweetest little girl and smiling is her favorite! She loves to wrinkle up her nose all the time, and it might just be the cutest thing I’ve ever seen!

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Headband (C/O Aubrey Charlotte Co.) // Top (Carters) // Moccs (C/O Freshly Picked)

She loves to do “sooo big” and “patty cake” and she has finally started waving with just one hand (it was two-handed for awhile!) She also has started doing the cutest thing with her fingers. She likes to wiggle them all around at the same time and it looks like she’s trying to tickle you. Blaire slept through the night for the first time just a few weeks ago and is really only waking up once per night. It’s usually between 5AM-6AM and we just bring her into our bed and she falls right back asleep until about 8:30AM. She has been using those three teeth to try out lots of new foods! Cheesy hashbrowns were a huge hit at breakfast with Santa.

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It’s so hard to get this girl to sit still these days. She’s always trying to crawl away! Not a day goes by that Jason and I don’t wonder how we got so lucky, or what we’d be doing without this amazing little girl. We love you SO much Blaire Elizabeth.

It’s My Birthday Week!

I can’t believe it’s only 4 days until Christmas… you know what that means?! Maybe you don’t. In that case, I’ll just tell you… Only 3 days until my birthday! We have been so busy this past week. We finished all of our Christmas shopping and have all of the gifts wrapped and under the tree.

Wednesday night was a rough night! Poor Blaire still has her cold and was still waiting for those new teeth to pop through. She wouldn’t fall asleep, and when she finally did, she would only sleep on Jason. She was awake for several hours throughout the night and was miserable.

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Thursday she was at daycare, where she would only nap while being held. I’m not sure what it was, but Thursday night, Blaire slept through the night! She went to bed at 8:30, and woke for a minute at 9:30. I went in and laid her back down, and she slept until I woke her up the next morning at 7:30! We heard her moving around a little bit throughout the night, but each time she got herself comfortable and fell back asleep. We were SO excited, to say the least! It felt amazing to get so much sleep, especially after such a rough night.

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Friday, Blaire left daycare with three Christmas gifts and she had so much fun opening them all. It was perfect practice for the week ahead. On Saturday we went to breakfast with Santa. Blaire could see Santa from her highchair during breakfast, so she basically kept one eye on him the whole time. He came over at one point (walking very slowly) and she was actually okay with it. She also sat on his lap for about 10 seconds before she started crying. Third time seeing Santa was a charm, I guess! ;) Then we headed back to my hometown for my work Christmas Party. I wanted a quick trim before the party, but ended up chopping off a couple inches. I figured I might as well embrace the short hair while I have it. Today we did lots of cleaning and relaxing. And FINALLY… one of Blaire’s top teeth finally popped through. It’s her top left, and I hope that means our girl will be feeling like herself soon.

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Every year after my birthday I always think I won’t be as excited the next year as I’m getting older (ew). But once it creeps up on me I’m so excited because it’s my birthday AND Christmas! What could be better? How excited are you for the holidays? xo

Weekends Past

The last few weekends have been fun and crazy! Let’s backtrack…

A few Saturdays ago, we attended a Christmas cookie party. We made Cookie Dough Truffles and they were SO good! You can find the recipe here. It was the first time we’d left Blaire to go out together since our first date/engagement anniversary back on September 10. It was only for a few hours… and we definitely had fun!

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So, last Saturday we kicked off our weekend with some Christmas shopping and a trip to our Farmer’s Market. They had a huge Holiday Open House with more than 35 small, local businesses. We had fun looking through all of the unique items. I even scored an amazing deal on headbands for Blaire. They were just the actual headbands, without any bows attached, and they were only $1! I’ll be posting pictures soon. ;) You can purchase from her on Instagram @thegreenlilac. And you can find her on Facebook, too. I also dressed Blaire up in her Santa outfit to see how it looked and to take a few pictures. We installed Blaire’s new carseat, and as you can see from the photo below, she loves it!

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Photo Dec 13, 12 10 31 PM Outfit – Carter’s // Headband – Claire’s // Moccs – C/O Freshly Picked
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That’s how Blaire feels about grocery shopping during nap time.

My best friends came to town and dropped off my 5-year-old Goddaughter with us so they could do some Christmas shopping. Blaire absolutely LOVES her! Her name is Brylee and she is the sweetest little girl. She sang and made silly sounds in the car to entertain Blaire, and Blaire didn’t stop laughing during the entire drive home. They played together for awhile, and then we decided to bake some sugar cookies to decorate! We used this recipe and they are AMAZING! Brylee and I ran to the store to get the ingredients we needed and some fun stuff to decorate our cookies with. She did so good helping Jason measure out the ingredients. And she even rolled and cut out some all by herself!

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We’re clearly not yet pros when it comes to cookie decorating! ;) But it was so much fun!

On Sunday, we did more Christmas shopping and ran some errands. We ended the day with our neighborhood’s annual Christmas Luminary and Light Walk. We got to drink hot chocolate and walk through the neighborhood looking at all of the beautiful Christmas lights. It was in the 50s (which is rare here in Iowa mid-December), so it was the perfect night to be out walking around. We were sure to keep Blaire at a safe distance from Santa, but the minute he acknowledged her, she started crying. Poor girl!

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It was hard to take photos that did the lights justice, but I tried anyways. Well, that’s an update on our crazy/busy/fun weekends. How about you? What has been keeping you busy during the holidays? xo

Yay! for New Headbands.

From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I have spent hours stalking Etsy for the perfect baby headbands. And one of my favorite new shops, Aubrey Charlotte Co., has some of the cutest little headbands I’ve ever seen! As you can tell from the majority of my pictures, Blaire is usually always rocking some type of GIANT bow/headband. So this delicate glittery, gold bow is a nice change of pace. I think such a small, sparkly bow really brings out those beautiful blue eyes of hers!

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Gold Glitter Headband C/O Aubrey Charlotte Co.

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Mama & Me Gold Lace Headbands
C/O Aubrey Charlotte Co.

These are just a few of our Aubrey Charlotte Co. headbands! Be sure to follow her on Instagram and you’ll be the first to know about her new products. I hope you’re having a great week!

Brunch with Santa

Last Sunday we had brunch with Santa! It was my MIL’s birthday, so it was the perfect excuse to have both sets of our parents come along. Jason, Blaire and I decorated cookies and made Blaire a Christmas stocking. Blaire was okay with Santa when he was standing a few feet away while offering her a candy cane, which she did NOT want to give up. Santa had a gift for each child there and Blaire was excited to help rip off the wrapping paper and then play with her new Elmo bath toy.

BUT… when it came time to sit on Santa’s lap for a picture, Blaire was not a fan. However, it was past her nap time. She was grumpy and hungry, and just not having it. Poor girl! I thought she might calm down if I held her, and as you can see in the photo below, it didn’t help. We still plan to take Blaire to the mall to see Santa. I’m hoping if there are less people around and she’s not hangry, then it might go better. PLUS, she has the cutest outfit to wear to see him. If you follow me on Instagram, which you should DEFINITELY be doing, then you already have seen a sneak peek! ;)

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Chritmas Stocking

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I just had to wrap up with a family picture! Blaire is looking down at our dog Mocha, in case you’re wondering. HA! How was your little one’s visit to Santa? What traditions are your favorite for the holidays? I’d love to hear them! xo

Freshly Picked Moccasin Giveaway

Today is the day!! We kicked off our FP Mocc Giveaway on Instagram. I thought it was the perfect way to reward a hard-working mama. One lucky winner will win one pair of moccasins from Freshly Picked in his/her choice of color/size. You can find all of the details on my Instagram: @shopaholicandababy. GOOD LUCK!

If you have never owned a pair of these moccs before, then let me tell you that you’ll never want to put any other shoes on your little one! They are so easy to put on them (even toe-scrunchers like Blaire!) AND they actually stay on! PLUS they’re the cutest things EVER. We’ve already gotten so many compliments just in the few days Blaire has had hers. :)

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IMG_2994.JPGRose Gold Moccs C/O Freshly Picked

Now head over to Instagram and enter to win! :)

Drug Store Beauty Favorites

Like I’ve said before, I’m a hoarder of everything, especially when it comes to beauty and hair products! I love wandering through Ulta and there’s just something about being able to try those name-brand products before you actually buy them. I also had a Birchbox subscription for years and it was THE BEST way to try out amazing (and usually, expensive!) products without committing to a full-size version of it.

Anyways, I’m always down to try new makeup, especially when it’s under $5. What do I have to lose? Absolutely nothing! I thought I’d share some of my favorite drug store beauty products, because I know most ladies are always looking for something new. And BONUS – none of these are over $8!

Drug Store Beauty Product Favorites

Eyeshadow Quad // Highlighter // Lip Stain // Eye Pencil // Lip Balm // Eyebrow Powder // Primer

Two of the most surprising items on this list are the Jordana Twist & Shine Moisturizing Balm Stain and the Walgreens Lip Balm in Watermelon. I bought the lip stain as a way to try out a new color… but I didn’t expect it to be my new favorite lip stain. Not only is the color amazing, it lasts forever! And I bought the balm on Black Friday since everything was an extra 25% off. It did not disappoint! It is longer lasting than any other chapstick I’ve ever used and it smells SO good!

Okay, there you have it… my favorite drug store beauty buys. What are your favorite products? I am on the hunt for a good mascara and a BB cream, so I’d love to hear what you’ve tried. xo

My Birthday/Christmas Wish List

As promised… here’s my Birthday/Christmas Wish List! My birthday is December 24, so every December I just get to make one, big list for my friends and family. Here are my top picks for this year. :)

Mama's Christmas Wish List

Herringbone Vest  // Eye Shadow // TOMS // Flannel Sheets // Chevron Frame

UOI Herringbone Vest: This vest has been #1 on my must-have list for winter fashion. I love that it’s so versatile. You can throw it over any top and it will look cute.

Eye Shadow: I saw a Pinterest makeup tutorial using this palette, and I’m obsessed. I tried using random shadows I have and, sadly, it’s just not the same.

Snow Leopard TOMS: I pinned these TOMS a year ago, and I just realized they’re on sale for under $35 right now. If I don’t get these bad boys, then I just might have to use my Christmas money to buy them! ;)

Flannel Sheets: Every, single night I get in to my freezing, cold bed and I wonder why I don’t have flannel sheets. Therefore, these cute, plaid sheets are at the top of my list!

Threshold Chevron Frame: I FREAKING LOVE PICTURE FRAMES! I’m a girl, okay. I can’t help it!

I am in desperate need of a new perfume!But I just haven’t made it out to test out any.  Kate Spade Twirl was my go to for the last year and a half, and I just ran out. My best friend just got this one from American Eagle and it smells amazing! …but I figured I’d try to be my own person and venture out to find my own new scent instead of just stealing hers! You’re welcome, Jamie. ;) Any suggestions? WELL, I’m sure I’ve missing something that I’ve just been dying to buy, but have held off on. What’s on your holiday list? xo

Blaire: 9 Months

Well, I’m posting this a few weeks late… but our girl is 9 months old! I can’t believe it. 9 months feels like such a milestone. I spent 9 months growing this kid and now she’s spent 9 months on this Earth. Weird? Maybe. Crazy? Definitely!

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Blaire is still babbling all the time. She said “mom” for the first time a few weeks ago. Every time she says it, it melts my heart. She also says “mama” and I SWEAR she has said “dog” and “kitty”. Lol. She still says “dad” “dada” “daddy” “hi” “hey” and “yeah”. She still just has her bottom two teeth, but is working on some more. She has been teething like crazy this past week. She LOVES to eat. She’s started getting really angry when someone else is eating and she’s not. Especially if you’re eating something with a spoon. She just assumes food on a spoon is meant for her, I guess. So far, her favorites include pizza, mashed potatoes, cucumbers, egg (yolks), cottage cheese and most fruit. (Still not a banana lover, unless it’s mixed with something else.)

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She’s always on the go… Crawling and pulling herself up on to anything and everything. The poor animals are always having to watch their backs because she loves to pull their hair and try to cuddle with them.  I will also note that it’s now terribly hard to get a non-blurry photo of her. I wish I could say she was sleeping through the night. Between her cold, her teething and her growth spurt she’s still up at least twice per night. On nights when her congestion or teething are really bothering her she’ll be up for hours at a time. (Insert zombie emoji here.) It’s rough! But it really makes you wonder how you did it during those newborn months. In the past few weeks she’s been sleeping on her side and stomach a lot, which I know I’ve mentioned before. But it’s just so cute! It makes her seem so grown up.

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Blaire’s personality is even sweeter than I ever could have imagined. She lights up anytime she sees Jason or I and it just melts my heart every, single time. She has started giving slobbery kisses when you ask her for a kiss and it is obviously one of my favorite things. She brings me more joy than I ever thought possible. Every time I look at her little face and she smiles back at me I know that I was meant to be her mom.

Do you remember your little one at this age? Which age has been your favorite? I’d love to know! Have a great week! xo