Penn turned 2 & Ollie’s newborn shoot

Hi friends!!! Last weekend we had Penelope’s 2nd birthday party.  We originally planned on having it at the playground but the weather was unseasonably cold for May so we made the call to have it at our house.  I am glad we made that decision because several people were very glad to not have to spend the afternoon outside in the cold.  We actually had a wonderful turnout and I am so thankful that most people could come.  Here are some photos from the day…

My mom and her husband came to visit Chicago for the party and to meet Oliver for the first time!


Instead of a birthday cake, we did donuts (among other little treats) and it was a huge hit!  IMG_2171IMG_2173IMG_2176IMG_2178IMG_2184IMG_2192

Since there were only going to be a handful of kids at the party, I was able to splurge a little on the party favors…I did a little herb planting kit.IMG_0386

Penny and the other kids seemed to have a real good time so I think the day was a great success🙂

In other news, Oliver got newborn photos taken.  The photo shoot was a complete disaster; we wanted to get pictures with Penny in them but both kids were NOT having it.  The whole ordeal took 3 hours and we didn’t get a single one with Penny so that was very disappointing.  At least the ones with Oliver came out nice, here are a couple:


And here is a picture of the kids together:



And then there were two

Every morning, after Oliver has kept me up all night, I emerge from the bedroom to greet the day like this:


Facing another day by myself with a toddler and newborn is scary!  Especially after not sleeping!

Chase has wonderful benefits, including 16 weeks of maternity leave, which is wonderful but being at home with these kids alone all day is HARD!!!  It takes a lot for me to not reach for a glass (or FIVE!) of wine every night.  I applaud all you stay at homers out there, it is so much harder than going to an office every day.

Despite it all, I am really cherishing this time with my babies.


Anyway, it has been over a month since Oliver was born and in case anyone is interested, here are the details…I was scheduled for an induction for 1am on March 29th (at 39 weeks) because I was so uncomfortable and my body was already showing signs of labor so my doctor gave the green light.  When I got to the hospital I was already having regular contractions so the little mister would have come that day or the next, regardless of the induction.  Once I was started on pitocin, it would only take 5 hours for Oliver to arrive!  Here are a couple pictures from the day…


Here is the last picture of me pregnant:


Woof!  Before giving birth, the nurses asked me “how big does he feel to you?” I responded that I felt like he was slightly bigger than Penny (but I was far more uncomfortable this time around so I should have known better!).  Well, he was a whopping 8lb, 12 oz (Penny was born at 41 weeks and was 7lb, 1 oz)!

Going from 1 kid to 2 has been pretty crazy, hence the delay in writing this post.  I will be home with the kids until mid-July and the 3 hardest things are 1) figuring out what to feed Penny all day, everyday; 2) figure out how to get these kids out of the house; and 3) listening to one or both of them cry all day!!!!  AHHH!

There are a variety of activities we’ve been doing to keep momma’s sanity and, in addition to taking advantage of the free neighborhood events (Barnes & Noble story hour, Whole foods dance/music class) we’ve been doing the following:

Sensory bins


Park time, lots & lots of park time


Arts & craps




Story time


Long walks


And snuggling this guy


I am very grateful that this kid was not born in January!

Until next time🙂


35 weeks and throwing it back

35 weeks!!!! Everyone tells me “you are so close!!!” but I have to admit, 5 weeks feels so so so so far away.

35 weeks

This pregnancy has been giving me a run for my money.  I’ve felt crappy pretty much the entire time and my new thing is that I have frequent spells of lightheaded/dizziness and heart palpitations.  The worst is when I ride the train.  The train line that I take to and from work everyday is so crowded that I am lucky to even get on, let alone get a seat.  I told my doctor that I often feel like I’m going to faint on the train and she suggested that I work from home for the rest of my pregnancy.  Thank goodness my boss was cool with that!  Working from home is not the most ideal situation (I get lonely here all by myself all day!) but it beats fainting on a crowded and VERY dirty train!

Anyway, being so close to the end has me excited about having a new baby around which obviously led to me looking at pictures of Penny when she was super tiny and I thought I would share…


And look at her now!!!


Let’s just hope that she quickly adjusts to having a new baby around!

Happy almost weekend🙂


I am currently in Chicago sitting on my couch because it is far too cold/miserable/snowy to go out.  As you can infer from the title of this post, we took a trip to South Florida.  We spent a couple days on South Beach, just the three of us then spent the remainder of the trip in Fort Lauderdale visiting with family and friends.  To say that coming back to the cold and miserable weather was difficult would be a severe understatement.  It’s times like this that make me question my life choices.

At any rate, below are a few photos from the trip. [please forgive the low quality nature of these pictures; traveling with a toddler requires you to pack a ridiculous amount of shit* stuff so packing the big fancy camera was not going to happen and my phone sucks]

*I am really trying to work on my cursing…I have become one of those lame mothers that says “fiddlesticks” instead of the F-bomb.  Forgive me.

Let me start out by saying that spending time in South Beach was extremely different this time because I am pregnant with a toddler.  In past years (and growing up), a trip to South Beach always included an embarrassing amount of alcohol but this time, we actually got around to see what there was to offer, other than the bars.

We rented a little condo via AirBnB and Penny made herself right at home…


We  mostly walked along the beachfront, hit up the Lincoln Avenue Mall and spent time at the playgrounds they had.  I was pretty impressed!!!  We did spend a little time at the actual beach but not a ton since it was kinda chilly… [side note: we could spot the locals a mile away as they were the ones wearing puffy jackets in 65 degree weather, which I found to be humorous.  Was I like that too when I lived here?]


This is me taking a very important picture at the playground, can’t you tell how much fun Penny is having?:


If you look closely at the below picture, you can see a rash on the left side of Penny’s mouth.  We gave her some processed syrup on the first day (we usually give her organic agave or honey) and she had an allergic reaction to it!  She got a rash all over her butt, legs, hands, arms and face…that was fun.IMAG0617_1

Spotted: pregnant beached whale (I am about 33 weeks) on SoBeIMAG0620_1_1

And her pup.IMAG0631_1IMAG0641

I really slowed down with the picture taking as the trip wore on and these are the only 2 photos I took with the people that we went to visit.

Four generations:IMAG0637_1

My step-sister, Melissa.IMAG0644_1

And now, back to reality:


Sad Face.

Toddler in the tundra

Holy cow, it has been really cold this last week.  Last weekend, with the windchill factor, temps were gettin’ down to the negatives…NOT COOL.  I know, I know…nobody cares how cold the weather is!


BUT, when it is so cold, it is really hard to keep a toddler indoors and happy so, here is what we did to try and keep the babe entertained.

My good friend Devon has an indoor pool at her place so on Saturday morning, we took Penny and she HATED it!  The kid would not stop crying until we took her out!  Grrrr.


Epic. FAIL.

Being Chase employees affords us the privilege of visiting several local museums and other tourist hot spots for free so on Sunday we thought that maybe this child would enjoy the aquarium.  Thank goodness this was much more of a hit!  She loved walking around and pointing at various aquatic species and calling them all “fitch.”


Happy?  Maybe.IMAG0576_Fotor

This weekend the weather is supposed to be much more forgiving so I think we are going to get back to our regular routine of just walking around when she gets cabin fever.  It’s a lot less of a hassle!

Have a great weekend!

I’m working on it, okay?

Ever since I had Penny, I have really struggled to go to the gym regularly.  It’s damn near impossible for me to wake up early enough to workout, get her ready, get me ready, then drop her off at daycare before heading to work.  After work? FORGET IT!  So, I recently tried my hand at going during lunch and it has actually been going well!!!  Obviously, time is a factor so I try to keep the workouts at 30 minutes so I have enough time to get there, change and come back (round trip, it takes me about 1 hour and 20 minutes).  In order to make this work, I try to go at least 4 days and I do 2 days of just cardio and 2 days of a tough 30 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) set.  Here is what I’ve done the last several days:

Thursday/Friday of last week: 30 minute AMRAP of the below


Monday: Cardio only – 15 minutes on elliptical, 15 minutes on treadmill

Tuesday: I did this [HARD] leg & butt workout from Pumps and Iron (note: I could only do it once through so I added some abs at the end instead)

Wednesday: I failed my 1 hour glucose test so I had to do the 3 hour test this day…naturally, I skipped the gym since I felt completely dehydrated and awful ALL DAY.

Thursday (today): Pumps and Iron came through for me again with this arms/core workout

Friday: I plan on doing cardio, probably the elliptical and stair master

This pregnancy has allowed me to workout uninterrupted which is nice.  When I was pregnant with Penny, I had a low-lying placenta so I wasn’t able to workout for a large portion of my pregnancy.  This time around has been much more stress-free!  CHEERS TO THAT!  However, I will say that I think I am larger this time around…

This is me at 28 weeks when I was pregnant with Penny:

28 Weeks(1)

Me at 28 weeks right now:


On second thought, after looking at it on the same page, I guess I’m not really that much bigger lol.  Sorry about the black and white picture but I had to do that so I would look less haggard.

That’s all I’ve got for now but here are a couple Penny pics because she’s my favorite


Little Trip to the Capitol

Happy holidays, ya’ll!!!

This is the time of year where I overstuff myself and swear that my diet starts on Monday..Come to think of it, that is my life in general regardless of the holidays.



So, as many of you may know, my family lives in South Florida and my husband’s family lives in New York so every year we alternate destinations for the holidays.  This year it was time to visit New York.  Since none of us has ever been to DC and since we don’t travel much these days, we thought it would be nice to fly to DC before taking a train to NY.  Overall, the DC trip was wonderful but rather exhausting as I am 25 week pregnant and there was lots of uphill walking involved.

So here are some photos…


We decided to allow her to watch cartoons on the flight to DC and she was completely entranced!  She was drooling and everything.  Mental note to only allow this sometimes.


We took Penny to the zoo and that was a big hit…she did her lion roar when she saw the lions.IMAG0533_1

We saw the White House then walked over to the National Tree (which was pathetic) and the Washington Monument.  I tried to get my husband to reenact the scene where Forest Gump is speaking and Jenny runs through the water toward him but he wasn’t game. Boo.IMAG0536_1

Obligatory Washington Monument selfie.  I thought about doing something a little more vulgar but I am trying to curb that behavior now that my daughter mimics everything I do. No fun.

We then took an Amtrak to New York where we are currently relaxing.

Penny was not happy on the train ride to New York.  We finally got her to sleep for the last hour of the trip which was nice.


She looks so angelic, right? WRONG! It took a lot of tears to get her to that point.  The terrible twos is a farce…try terrible one.point.fives.

Peace and love on this holiday, enjoy it people!