Gift Guide: For the Littles

When it comes to Christmas gifts for the little people, we try to keep it relatively simple, sticking to a few things they’ll wear, read, want, and need. Here are a few of the things that made the cut!

1 // Lovey by Iviebaby This shop has the most gorgeous fabrics for all the baby things! All loveys are 20% off through the end of today AND shipping is free! Izzy hasn’t settled on any one special animal or blanket yet, so I’m kiiiiiinda hoping this is it 🙂

2 // Nintendo Switch Bundle Landon has had a Switch on his Christmas list for two years running (and so has Mike) so we shopped around for Black Friday deals and grabbed this one online! It’s way more than we would spend on a single present (or kid in general), so it’s going to be a family present. This particular bundle is no longer available, BUT almost all of the major retailers are running some kind of deal this weekend.

3 // Minecraft and Captain America Water Bottles Love these! Landon likes taking a water bottle to school and rehearsal, and his current one is dying a slow death. Of course, whatever Landon has, Alex has to have, too, and he is alllllllll about the superheroes this year.

4 // Cat Pillow by Pillowfort These “pillows” are actually more like large handmade dolls in the style of Cuddle and Kind, but at an affordable price point. I bought the ballerina for Izzy last year, and grabbed this one and the mermaid when Target had them on sale a few weeks ago!

5 // Dog Man: Brawl of the Wild Landon and his friends are obsessed with this series, and I’m one hundred percent here for it because he is normally a bit of a reluctant reader. This is the sixth book in the series, and it comes out on Christmas Eve! If you pre-order it and choose two-day shipping, Amazon will deliver it juuuuuust in the knick of time to throw it under the Christmas tree.

6 // Magnatiles House Set We are in love with Magnatiles! We bought a set for Alex last Christmas, and the boys are always playing with them. They are definitely pricey- and there are tons of less expensive magnetic building toys- but the quality can’t be beat. I don’t mind investing in toys like these because I know they will be played with for a long time! We also ordered this expansion set, and I know it will be a big hit.

7 // Little Feminist Board Books These are the perfect size for little hands, and full of strong women! Never too early, right? After all, she is going to run the world someday 🙂

8 // LeapFrog LeapStart 3D Alex has been the hardest kiddo to buy for this year, especially when it comes to “something they’ll read” because we have so many books already. The LeapStart has a ton of great reviews, and it looks like something he can do on his own that will get him excited about reading. Fingers crossed!

Happy shopping!

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Life Lately

So… it’s been a minute. A lot of minutes actually. Between three little people, working full time, and trying to watch thirty minutes of TV with my husband without falling asleep, I’ve had exactly zero brain cells to devote to forming coherent sentences that live on the internet.

But here we are 🙂

I will one hundred percent be grumbling about this snow day when we are still in school long after the pool has opened, but today it is getting all of the thumbs up because it means a slow morning with pancakes and a baby that naps and binge-watching Fuller House with the boys. And attempting to form coherent sentences that live on the internet.

That baby I was trying to will out of my body in April? She’s six months old now (and had her own plans of being born three days past her due date in May). She is an absolute dream. The way she smiles lights up her whole face. She can get away with pretty much anything the way she looks at you with her big brown eyes, and she knows it!

She is the smallest little baby peanut of the bunch, but the most determined by far. She figured out how to scooch last week, and within a few days was wriggling across the room like it was nothing. Her big brothers are the most fascinating people in the world, as far as she’s concerned, and you can tell that she just can’t wait to keep up with them! She’s a feisty little thing for sure, and I just know she’s going to run the world someday.

Our resident threenager is suddenly so grown up. I kind of forgot how big of a transition year this is! He’s been trying on all kinds of new words and phrases, testing pretty much all of the things, and finding his place as the middle child. It’s been a big learning curve for us, too! In lots of ways, he wants to be a big kid. But he also wants to suck his thumb and wear diapers for the rest of his life. If we can potty train this kid without losing our minds, it will be a miracle.

He wasn’t sure about Izzy at first, but I think she’s grown on him 🙂 He loves to be a helper, always asking if he can feed Izzy or help me in the kitchen. He also loves terrorizing Landon and playing/watching/doing the same things obsessively for weeks at a time (currently, that means watching Season 3 Episode 1 of Fuller House and playing the Pete the Cat sight word game). His style can best be described as Goodwill chic, insisting on wearing Landon’s hand-me-downs and looking as much like a hobo as possible. He’s a little scrappy and mischievous and the quintessential little brother.

And then there’s Landon. I still can’t believe we have a school-aged kid. Like, wasn’t he just running around singing Bubble Guppies songs and asking me to read No David? Now he’s a few weeks away from performing in his very first musical, reading chapter books on his own, and living  to play on the Xbox. He could not be more of a firstborn if he tried, and let me tell you how weird that is, trying to parent a smaller version of myself. This stage of the game means helping him navigate big feelings, friendships, and new experiences, setting expectations for things like homework and screen time, and hoping we kind of sound like we know what we’re doing.  It’s also a sweet time of seeing a little bit of our hard work pay off in just how awesome he is with Alex and Izzy, and the way he sets a good example for them to follow.

He is a math brain for sure, remembers every little thing you tell him, constantly asks us to play songs from the musicals we were in, and has dreams of being an architect or maybe a firefighter. Whenever he talks about growing up and getting married, he says that he wants to have a pool in his backyard, “but only if it’s okay with my wife.” You’re welcome, future daughter-in-law.

We’re up to at least three inches of snow by now, and Izzy is in the middle of her second nap. Happy snow day to me! We went outside earlier for about half as long as it took to get dressed for the snow, and that was long enough for me. I’m just here for the hot chocolate.

This time with littles is so busy and will be over before we know it. Hoping that jotting it down here and there will be a sweet way to remember it all.

Stay warm out there!

Currently // 4.14.18

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Willing this baby to make her way out, sooner than later! At our appointment this week, the doctor thought she might be on the small side so he had me stay to get an ultrasound. It turns out she’s actually hulk-sized, measuring a week+ ahead and already weighing 6 1/2 pounds. Favorite quote? “Wow, look at that melon!”

Yeeeeeeah, not-so-little girlfriend, you’re going to have an April birthday for sure!

Loving this diaper bag! I ordered it from Kohl’s at 30% off (with free shipping ;)) and it’s all packed and ready to go! It’s roomy but not humungous, so I have plenty of room for all the things without feeling like I’m about the hike the Pacific Crest Trail. It might be tight if you’re trying to carry things for more than one little nugget, but Alex has his own little backpack so I don’t have to worry about that. Speaking of that little wild child…

Planning Alex’s third birthday party! I can hardly believe we’re about to have another #threenager around here. He’s suddenly grown up a ton over the last few months, picking up new phrases and expressions, and becoming more independent every day. And watching him play with Landon? My heart, you guys.

Eyeing shorts like these and tanks like these to add to my post-baby wardrobe! Easy and casual (and forgiving!) for keeping up with three little people, but they can be dressed up with strappy sandals and a cute necklace for when I need to look like I have my life together.

So grateful for springtime!

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This weekend gets all the heart eyes for perfect weather. The days are getting longer, I’m pretty sure we’re done with snow (though it’s hard to be sure around here), and I’m so happy to get back outside with the little guys for trips to the park, bike riding, and ice pops… and walking this baby out 🙂

 

Maternity + Family Pictures

You have been known and loved, prayed for and dreamed of, much longer than these nine months I’ve carried you, Izzy girl.

This isn’t our first time, but it’s just as sweet. Sweeter, even, because it’s the last time, saying hello and goodbye, all at once.

You’ve always been meant for our family, sweet girl. Savoring these last few weeks, and counting down the days until everyone’s here.


Photos by the amazing Lauren Young! Check out more of her work here and follow her at @laurenyoungphoto

The Littlest Kozlowski

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We’re less than six weeks away from meeting The Littlest and this is the first time I’m writing anything about it. Well, on the internet anyway. Chalk it up to the fact that this is the third baby and things are exponentially more busy than they were when I was pregnant with Landon (sleeping in until ten) or Alex (only responsible for keeping one small person alive).

The first trimester was a blur of “evening sickness,” falling asleep in Alex’s bed at 7:30PM, and waking up with intense cravings for late night fast food. The second and third trimesters have been about the same, minus the evening sickness (#blessed) and with the addition of a legitimate baby bump- much better than looking perpetually like I’d eaten an entire box of Oreos.

Which was sometimes true.

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Now here we are, closing in on the home stretch, and it’s bittersweet. I’m constantly dreaming of her, imagining what she’ll look like and who she’ll be; how the boys will react and how our family will change. It obviously makes me all the more impatient (and is one hundred percent responsible for the pregnant insomnia that keeps me up from roughly 2-5AM every night), but it’s also something I’m going to miss- the anticipation of meeting a whole new person. Getting that falling-in-love feeling the moment that little nugget is in your arms.

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So grateful that we get to do this a third time, and counting down the days (<41) until you’re here, Izzy girl. We can’t wait to meet you.

 

 

Baby Favorites

Baby FavoritesBeing a first time mom is a lot like preparing for the apocalypse. You aren’t sure exactly what you’re going to need, so you stockpile everything in sight and hope for the best. The third time around, I’m feeling like I could probably do this Hunger Games style with a single backpack of supplies and everyone would live to tell about it.

Contrary to what most pregnancy web sites and registry builders will tell you, babies don’t need a whole lot. What exactly do you need? Besides the obvious things you need to clothe, feed, clean, and diaper this new little human (read: Hunger Games backpack), there are plenty of products that make life a lot easier! AND they’re things you will actually use (read: not a wipes warmer- your baby is not Beyonce).

1 // In those first few months when all baby wants to do is eat and sleep around the clock, the Rock and Play Sleeper is a lifesaver. We kept it in our bedroom in lieu of a pack and play (and also in lieu of sleepwalking to the baby’s room every three hours) and it definitely made 4AM feedings more manageable. It’s also easy to close up and move to a different place in the house, so little one can snooze in the kitchen while you’re stealth-eating gummy snacks cooking dinner.

2 // I love swaddles like these because they can be so many things- blankies, nursing covers, carseat covers, a place for baby to lay while big brothers play in the yard. And they’re so cute!

3 // We keep an on-the-go changing station in both of our cars and they have saved us so many times! Grab a shoebox-sized storage container and toss in a diaper clutch like this one, a change of clothes or two, and maybe even a backup paci or bottle or whatever else you want to have around just in case. You will forget to restock your diaper bag (or forget your diaper bag altogether) and having extras on standby will keep you from driving home from grandma’s with a half-clothed baby- been there, done that.

4 // We’ve never bought an actual high chair because our dining room is pretty small, but boosters like this one have done the job just fine! I love that it functions like a high chair initially but transitions to help the littles eat at the table, and it’s easy to take with you when you travel.

5 // Landon wasn’t much for baby-wearing, but Alex was like sign me up from day one. Izzy has no choice but to love it because otherwise I will never get anything done. The Baby K’Tan is awesome because it’s already looped- less of a job wrapping baby up as opposed to the Moby Wrap- and it’s what I used with Alex. A blogger I follow is all about the Wildbird ring slings, so I ordered one to try with Izzy!

Heading into round three of life with a newborn, I’m looking forward to having all of these things around! What are your baby favorites?

Izzy’s Room

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Crib Sheet // Curtains // Heart Print // Swaddle Set // Ballerina Doll

This is our third (and last!) baby, and the first time we’ve had an actual nursery ready before our due date. Landon had a pack and play in a faux-nursery we set up in one half of the spare room in our first apartment, and Alex’s room was finished when he was about three months old. Here’s the thing about that- no one cares, especially not the baby. Do you have diapers? A place for it to sleep? Clothes to put on its body? You’re doing just fine 🙂

This time around, we are generally more adultier adults and have the resources and time that mean all of my blogger-inspired nursery dreams can come true. I fell in love with the nursery this blogger put together for her youngest, so that’s essentially how I designed Izzy’s, with some adjustments to fit a sliiiiiiightly lower budget (and minus her gorgeous hardwood floors).

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Bookshelves // Print // Basket // Heart Blanket

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Jar

I still haven’t decided what to put above her bed (if anything at all) or above her cube shelves. I’ve been tossing around the idea of ordering her name from this Etsy shop but I’m not sure how I’d stain it or which font to use. I’d like to incorporate something from the boys- maybe some artwork to hang- and possibly a space to display some of our maternity and newborn pictures- without making it too busy. Stay tuned!

To maximize space in both of the kids’ rooms, I strategically organized the closets in lieu of having dressers. Hanging organizers like these are great for clothes that need to be folded and semi-organized. Sterilite drawers can be stacked however you need them to be and are perfect for socks and diapers and all of those loose ends. Highly recommend!

This is easily my favorite space in the house. I love how the paint color catches the light in different ways. I love that it’s classic and feminine without being too over the top, that it’s a space that can grow with her from a nursery to a big girl room. But those days are a million years from now, right?

We’re ready for you, Izzy girl!  Only about ten more weeks to go.