Emma’s 2nd Year Birthday Questions

You can see her “answers” from last year here. I had to answer most of these questions again since I’m not exactly sure she knows what the word “favorite” means yet. ๐Ÿ˜›


1. What is your favorite color? yellow (this is only a recent thing….normally I would say pink although she ALWAYS wants to wear green pants hehe)
2. What is your favorite toy? Probably her rice box or her Thumper stuffed animal
3. What is your favorite fruit? strawberries
4. What is your favorite tv show? Caillou
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Pizza
6. What is your favorite outfit? This changes daily. Sometimes she will want to wear one thing and refuse to wear it the next day but there is one consistent thing she likes and that is her green pants!


7. What is your favorite game? Pretending to cook and feed people
8. What is your favorite snack? Baked sweet potatoes or chips
9. What is your favorite animal? I think she is scared of all animals right now
10. What is your favorite song? Brave by Sara Bareilles
11. What is your favorite book? Let’s Go To The Farm (Lift The Flap) Book
12. Who is your best friend? still Mommy I think
13. What is your favorite cereal? We haven’t been feeding her much cereal but she likes Rice Crispies
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? people watch, blow bubbles, and eat
15. What is your favorite drink? cow’s milk (oh how much this has changed from last year!)
16. What is your favorite holiday? I don’t think she has a favorite holiday yet but she really enjoyed Easter last month!


17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Mommy/Thumper
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Paleo pancakes or oatmeal
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Pizza
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? a chef!

A video of Emma saying cheers with her cousin Xander. It probably only cracks me up to watch this.

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Hidden Veggie Pizza/Pasta Sauce

It seems like EVERY kid loves pizza and/or pasta. I know my little Emma does! She always wants to eat pizza! So I was very intrigued when I found this recipe called Veggie Heavy Pizza Sauce by Weelicious. I made it one day and it was pretty tasty. Tasty enough that Emma ate it! I made a big batch and stored some of it in the freezer for some quick and healthy meals for those times when I don’t know what to make for Emma.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, diced
1 medium carrot
1 stalk celery
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 28-ounce cans diced tomatoes, drained

1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the bell peppers, carrots, celery, onions and garlic. Saute until veggies are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 more minute, stirring constantly.
2. Add the tomatoes, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Remove from heat, puree with an immersion hand blender (or in a regular blender) until almost smooth.
4. Return sauce to the heat and simmer until thick, 10-20 minutes. The longer you simmer this sauce the thicker and more flavorful it will become. You can simmer up to 2 hours.

Here’s a few ways we used it:

We made some english muffin pepperoni pizzas. Emma has really started to enjoy cooking with me and she LOVED making her own pizza. It’s a really easy thing for even toddlers to do and Emma could not wait for her pizza to finish cooking! She was so excited about eating this. Unfortunately, since I tried to be healthier and used whole wheat english muffins these weren’t as tasty as a normal pizza (with no fault to the sauce). I think next time I’ll try using pizza dough or pita bread.


We also made a simple pasta with just the sauce. I discovered awhile back they made pasta out of veggies so this is like a super dose of veggies!


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The 2nd Time Around

My due date is getting closer and closer! I’m excited and definitely scared of the changes too. This post about letting go of your first baby really hits home. I know it will be great for Emma to have a sibling but a part of me is sad for her in that she won’t get our full and undivided attention anymore. I’m not really sure how she will adjust, especially since she is such a mama’s girl and I will undoubtedly be very busy with her brother since I will be bfing again. I hope we are able to balance having 2 and giving both kids the love and attention they deserve. I know the first few weeks will definitely be a time of adjustment for all of us.

A few other things I’m not looking forward to:
– Random wakeups at night and just the whole newborn “schedule”. Even though I am not sleeping well right now because of the uncomfortableness of the 3rd trimester, it’s a totally different story when you are in a deep sleep and get woken up by a loud cry!

– BFing. I love and hate breastfeeding. Not looking forward to pumping again that’s for sure! And I’ve always had milk supply issues so it’s always a lot of work for me in the beginning to get it going and to have enough.

– Doing the whole bedtime routine with a newborn. We’ve really gotten into a groove with Emma and it’s been pretty fast and easy to put her down and we get the whole evening to ourselves! I remember in the beginning it would take an hour+ sometimes to get her down. I hope this baby is not as fussy as she was! Maybe this time we will sleep train? hehe

– Using the crib. Husband won’t let me switch the crib to a floor bed and since we still cosleep with Emma in our queen sized bed…that means the baby is stuck in the crib or cosleeper which means when baby cries I have to get up to get the baby and feed him. The reason Emma sleeps with us is because I was too lazy to do that the first time around! And if this baby is like Emma, he won’t sleep more than 15 mins at a time in a crib. I am thinking of getting a topponcino. Has anyone had experience with one?

– A crying baby that won’t be soothed. Sometimes a baby will just cry and none of the normal tricks will work. I dread those.

– Postpartum recovery. OMG. I am really dreading this. I thought this was the worst part and I kept wondering why nobody told me how bad this part was. Labor is a piece of cake compared to this! I just hope recovery is easier and faster the 2nd time around.

What I am looking forward to:
– BFing. Again, I have a love/hate relationship with breastfeeding but I have to admit that since it’s my 2nd time around it should be a LOT easier! I had a lot of problems the first time around and it probably took me WEEKS before I was able to comfortably do it. It was actually pretty stressful and I almost gave up! Now I know what to expect and the “right” way to do it.

– Not being so clueless about everything. Man, we used google like crazy that first time around. We did everything “by the book”. We woke up the baby every 4 hours to feed because that’s what the DR and books told us. Now I’m totally of the opinion of don’t wake a sleeping baby!! We also delayed giving Emma a bottle and listened to our DR to “bird feed” her with a syringe for like a week so that she wouldn’t have nipple confusion. OMG. after a week of that we gave up and used the bottle and it was like 100x easier. I am never doing the syringe feeding again! Same thing with the pacifier. They told us wait 6 weeks to give her a pacifier….by that time she refused to take it and ended up using me as a pacifier! There’s just so many things I know better about now…you don’t always have to listen to the DR or the books or google. Sometimes you just have to listen to your gut!

– Being able to enjoy the newborn phase. I think last time I was too worried about everything and just trying to adjust to being a mom. I didn’t go anywhere and barely left the house if I wasn’t with my husband. This time I feel like I can enjoy my maternity leave better and really bond because I’m not going to worry about the stupid stuff.

I am really nervous about what this 2nd baby is going to be like. It can really make/break how fun/easy the newborn stage is if you have a mild mannered baby or a colicky baby. PLEASEPLEASE DO NOT HAVE COLIC BABY#2!!!! I do notice this baby moves like crazy in my stomach…much more so than Emma did so I’m kind of nervous that he’s going to be a typical boy and be rambunctious and a handful. We’ll see I guess!

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Friday Links

Great tip:
62 tricks to get a sleeping baby – I’m going to have to start going through this list soon!! :o/

Great activity:
How to teach the alphabet with Lego Duplo Blocks

To make:
10 easy diy nursery wall art ideas – We made some wall art for Emma for her nursery…if I have time I should def do something for baby #2!

To buy:
http://buymodernbaby.com/blog/2013/04/05/pillows-from-poppy-red/ – Again, if I was decorating another nursery, it would definitely include one of these pillows!

To think about:
glass half empty, glass half full – how was your day today?

For a laugh:
New parenting study released

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Emma’s Faves (2 Years!)

Here’s what Emma was loving this past month:

The Bingo Song – Yes…the one about the Farmer and his dog named B-I-N-G-O! This song has replaced Emma’s favorite bedtime song of Happy Birthday. She loves to sing along with me.

Let’s Go To The Farm (Lift The Flap) book – Emma loves books with flaps and this one has tons of them! At first I wasn’t sure how much she liked the book but this past month it’s the book she has been requesting we read every night. The cool thing about this book is it teaches numbers, shapes, animal sounds, and animal names! Emma now recognizes triangles and circles and that baby dogs are named puppies! She loves to press on the doors and say “Ding Dong” and I say “Who’s there?” and she will answer with whatever is behind the door. So cute!

Sweet Potato “chips” – So happy that one of her favorite snacks is so easy to make and is actually healthy. I just slice them and toss them with olive oil and paprika and pop them in the oven at 400 for about 25 minutes. I’m trying to work on making them “crispier” but she doesn’t seem to mind that they aren’t. I may try swapping out the olive oil for coconut oil and upping the temperature.

Melissa and Doug Time To Eat Feeding Set – I got this set along with the matching doll and for awhile she loved feeding her “baby” but recently she has been using parts of this set to feed us and her stuffed animals. She is totally into pretend cooking right now and having picnics!

Endless Numbers – She was a fan of the Endless Alphabet iPhone/iPad app and we recently discovered Endless Numbers which I think she loves even more! The graphics are so cute too.

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Toddler Recipe Fails

Ok, so just because Emma didn’t like these recipes…doesn’t mean YOUR kid won’t! So I thought I would share them even though they were total fails for my kiddo. Every kid is seriously different!

Beet Carrot Apple Smoothie (from Hellobee)

1 c ice
1 medium beet, roasted, peeled, and roughly chopped
1 medium carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
1 apple, cored and roughly chopped
1/2 c plain yogurt

Add all ingredients to blender and blend on high until smooth. Serve cold.

Makes 1 large glass or two small glasses


I’ve tried some of the green smoothies and Emma has an aversion to green drinks usually so I thought I would try this beet smoothie. Unfortunately, I think the smell of the beet was just too great for her and she wouldn’t even try it! Boo. I thought it was pretty tasty.

Peanut Butter Cookies for baby (from Mommy Nearest)

Makes 2 dozen cookies

1 heaping cup mashed sweet potato (1 large sweet potato or 2 medium, baked in the oven or microwave)
3/4 cup natural peanut butter
1 cup rolled oats


Preheat oven to 350.

Mash the sweet potato and peanut butter with a fork or a silicone spatula until thoroughly combined. Fold the oats into the mixture.

Use a 1.5-tablespoon ice cream scoop to divide the dough into equal portions on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat. Gently flatten the dough balls with a fork (the dough is sticky, so it helps to very lightly grease the back of the fork).

Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until bottoms are set and the tops of the cookies are dry. Check after 10 minutes to rotate the pan if necessary. Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet before removing. If your baby is new to solid foods, break the cookies into smaller, more manageable pieces.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.



As you can see, my cookies were not as pretty as the ones in the original post. My excuse was I was running late for a DRs appt so I didn’t have time to form them correctly! But I’m not sure how I could have messed up the recipe considering how simple it is! Anyways…I didn’t really like these either and knew Emma wouldn’t after I tried them even though she LOVES cookies. I used one of those “natural” peanut butters from Trader Joe’s and it just tasted funny to me when it was in the form of this cookie for some reason.

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Friday Links

Great tip:
When a child’s fever becomes a serious problem (infographic) – Hopefully we won’t have to worry much about this now that winter is over!

Great activity:
75 tv free activities for toddlers – the other day I spent an hour having a picnic with Emma and her stuffed animals!

To make:
12 fun and healthy snacks for kids – I think Emma may actually eat some of these!

To think about:
Playing with puzzles is better for toddlers than learning to read and write‘: Psychologist says teaching young children the 3Rs could be damaging – Not sure if I agree with this or not

For a laugh:
“My Imaginary Well Dressed Toddler Daughter” Is The Definitive Best Pinterest Board


What itโ€™s like having a newborn, summed up perfectly – SO SO TRUE am I right parents?

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Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

Mother’s Day is coming up! Here are some gift ideas you can whip up or buy to show your appreciation for your mom since they do have the “toughest job in the world”! If you haven’t seen this video yet, it’s a must watch and perfect for Mother’s Day.

DIY Clay Jewelry Dish – Dads – you can even get the kids to help you with this one. So cute!!!

Make mom a cute new jewelry dish this year!

Mother’s Candy Bar Printable – super easy for a fast and easy gift. Include a homemade card and this beautiful bouquet and you’re done!


If your little one is too small to make a card, try this awesome photobooth printable card you can make out of your instagram photos!


Dual birthstone ring – This one is perfect for all of the moms with 2 kids. Get a ring with the birthstones of both kids.


Diptyque Candles – These seem to be all the rage right now. I have a hard time spending that much on a candle but if your mom loves candles this one has been getting rave reviews

A photo gift from Pinhole Press – I love giving photo gifts for Mother’s/Father’s Day. In fact, I’ll be sharing a Father’s Day gift I made recently through Pinhole Press soon. I especially love the quality of Pinhole Press compared to other photo gift websites and they also recently introduced some nifty Mother’s Day gift boxes that include a little something along with the photo gift!


Golden Tote (or other clothing subscription service) – Most moms I know rarely have the time to shop for themselves. It’s just hard to drag a baby or small kid into a dressing room!! There are other popular ones like Stitch Fix but I think this one has better reviews.


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The Toddler Rules

I didn’t know this was a term…”the toddler rules”…but it’s so true. Toddlers develop the funniest/cutest/annoying rules that we must follow lest we want a major tantrum to ensue. Currently these are Emma’s ridiculous toddler rules:

1. Mom must always be the one to hand Emma her bottle before she drinks it. Even when Dad prepares her bottle for her and gives it to her she automatically makes me hold it (for even just 1 sec) so that I may hand it to her.

2. Emma must approve whatever she is wearing that day. Nothing fashionable. Some days she only wants to wear GREEN. NO PINK. The more tacky/loud looking the better. She usually will not wear blue unless it has something UCLA on it.

For example, this is what Emma wears if I let her choose her own clothes. These are her favorite pants and her favorite shoes (they are hand me down Lightning McQueen crocs from her male cousin)

3. All baths must include a plastic egg for her to play with

4. Emma must climb into her car seat BY HERSELF!

5. The light in the car must be on while we are driving at night. Unless it is “out of batteries” (this is the excuse we tell her as to why it can’t be on while we are driving!)

6. Emma will only wear crocs. She has tons of cute shoes and refuses to wear any of them. This makes me SO SAD. (see above)

7. At bedtime, MOM (and only MOM) must sing Happy Birthday to her cousin Ollie until she falls asleep. Over and over and over again.

8. Only mom can brush her teeth. And even then it’s a struggle.

Ok, those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head but she invents new ones every day! What about your toddlers? Do they have any funny rules you must follow?

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Little Girls’ Hairstyles

One of my favorite parts of having a girl is getting to style her hair. Emma’s hair is still a little too thin and not long enough for me to do most of these but I am definitely saving them for the future!

The Top Knot

The Knot Pony

The Crown Braid

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