Picked Up a Growing Little Gummy Bear. 


When you get married, people start asking when you’re going to “start a family.” After the first comes, people start asking when they’re going to get another sibling. For most, this usually comes and then you think the questions will stop since this generation we think two is plenty with how expensive housing, day to day expenses, and finally university is. 

Oh no, wrong! The questions don’t stop if you’re adding an addition to the family.  

After Addison, I toyed with the notion of having 3 kiddos but just didn’t think I would have the patience and energy since I’m literally drained everyday. I also wanted to go back to corporate work life when at one of girls went to public school. Guess life has a different calling for me for at least another couple years.  

The scoop. 

I’ve been using Bellabeat since I lived in London and loved how it tracked my sleeping, activity, body (period/pregnancy), and stress level so I realized I was a bit late from the tracker. So, I used 2 Clearblue plus/minus pregnancy indicators on different days and it came back negative. Breathe of relief, but still no period. So, on the anniversary of my dad’s passing (July 25), I took another Clearblue test with a digital indicator. 

Pregnant. 

Tried again later in the day and it still read the same. Pregnant. 

Awesome…well the reality didn’t sink in until I went to my family doctor, my new obgyn who is awesome and the wait time isn’t bad (whew!), and two ultrasounds later where the heartbeat is strong. Conclusion – yes there is a little gummy bear growing in me. #omg

My dad had always wanted a family of five so I’m glad to see he’s living vicariously through my growing family. Now all I can pray for is that I have his patience, strong and loving character to focus on the family first. 

P.S. I’m posting this close to 12 weeks pregnant and most go “social media” after first trimester. But, for those that know/hung out with me, if there isn’t a drink in hand something is wrong so I had to spill the beans pretty early on or I would be stuck at home driving the fam crazy. 😂 Below is me telling them yet again to snap a shot. 


📷: @freshlypicked are seriously the most comfy leather mocs. Abigail is wearing the @freshlypicked sandals which she says are soft and pretty. #toddlerapproved 

Cheers for now. Thanks for reading. xx

A Girl Can’t Have Enough…

Bags.

It’s a lot harder now with having 2 littles to carrying around a nice little purse, but now that we’re back in California with a car I decided it’s time to not just be a mom, but also feel nice with what we’re able to accessorize with and still be functional.

I wanted a diaper bag with a lot of compartments and leather to really feel like this is a nice bag. I also wanted one that could give you the option of being a backpack when necessary.

It took awhile, but I found my dream bag at a designer brand called Lily Jade.

Seriously, here’s why:

  • Leather is so soft!

💟  P.S. sneak peek of Addison’s room – we clearly love the color grey. The London storage bins are from KaiKai&Ash – city collection.

  • designs are clean/colors are lovely

  • just enough compartments inside and outside the bag

  • it gets better – 12 compartment tote inside the bag can be easily taken out to leave with the “grandparents” while you go out with your non-mom items!  Fear not, there are still compartments and zippers to store your goodies when the tote is removed.

💟  P.S. I have some of my favorite essentials from Bebe Au Lait (they have the cutest patterns!).  Pictured is the Muslin nightingale nursing scarf and hot air balloon wet/dry bag sitting on the Muslin moon crib sheet.

  • big enough to put your laptop in as well so you don’t have to use it just as a diaper bag (or maybe your little too)

  • did I mention there is a removable tote inside so if you’re the type that really wants to use your Longchamp’s bag with not enough compartments or need to make a quick bigger bag change, you are able to put a little “Lily Jade” in there for a quick transfer of your little’s necessities. How well thought out is that?
  • And of course, you can wear as a backpack to be hands free. Yay!


I’ve had my Lily Jade bag for a bit now and it’s been perfect for all types of weather and adventures. Oh yes, in California we can get to the snow driving in 1.5 hours.

Cheers for now and yes, this bag is everyday perfect. #lilyjade


#musthave #inlove

Time flies. 

Wow, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted and so much has happened. We’ve moved back to California (brought the London rain with us)!  

A few thoughts:

  • Insane beehive in our home. There was about 180 pounds of bees and honeycomb in our walls to get rid of! 

  • Addison is now 6 months old and is staying strong to not sleeping through the night. 😢

  • Abigail is in a Chinese school and could potentially read/write more than me. 

  • I’m now a soccer mom with my minivan. I must say I love all the space inside and the blind spot camera is awesome!! 
  • Getting new decor and furniture for our home is what I love to do especially from small shops (more to come on future posts).
  • We’re back in southern California and haven’t been to the beach, but have been to the snow (we’re less than 2 hours away from snow and 20 minutes from the beach)

  • Poke and seafood in general is so fresh and tasty here. You just can’t beat $1 oysters. 

  • I’ve cleared out a lot of my inventory of alphabet books (big thanks for those who’ve purchased my books on my website) and have been inspired to finish working on my “I is for Impala” book to send to print. Don’t forget to use CODE: Angsley to get $3 off your order when you purchase on my website: www.ajangsley.com 


Anyhow, I’ve definitely been going through London withdrawals and missing all the European travels we did. I still can’t believe Abigail visited 22 countries while we lived in London. 

One thing I clearly miss is walking more to get places and using that as my exercise for the day. Now, I have to set aside time to exercise which is incredibly hard as a sleep deprived mama of two. Any pointers? #please

Cheers for now and thanks for jumping back onto my blog. xx

OMG, 22. 

Abigail (3.5 years old) has now been to 22 European countries in the span of 2 years since moving to London. She’ll have some stories to tell but definitely iPhone pictures to share. Isn’t it crazy how tech savvy kids are?

This trip to Cyprus was a little painful since she was sick with a cough and probably a sore throat, but she toughed it out for the most part and only made it apparent she was just a toddler 30% of the day and wanted tons of cuddles from us.

We stayed at The Royal Apollonia for this holiday and we would definitely recommend it. It’s been renovated nicely and the hotel room floors are tile which makes it feel so much cleaner (plus, they provide hotel slippers!). We had a spectacular balcony view of the pool and Mediterranean Sea.

📷: Outside our balcony 💟 Already drooling at 13 weeks but this Frecklebaby bib makes my list as absorbent, soft, bamboo, and the cutest prints on both sides. But wait, imagine nothing dropping on the floor with the unique snap on leash for a teething toy or paci.

P.S. Use CODE: GIVE for $4 off any of my sets of books. Free shipping. Visit www.ajangsley.com 

 

Breakfast is included and there is a pretty yummy range of food to choose from so get there before 10:30am. Oh and parking is free!

📷: 💟 cutest organic panda bear outfits from Turtle Dove London. Super soft material, monochrome patterns, modern, and a new shop. Love!

📷: one down, one more to go.  

The pool. We went when the pools were not heated (indoor is) so it was pretty cold water. I think the ocean was warmer! They have their own beach which is great because there is also a jetty so the waves are not so big. Perfect for swimming in the sea.

📷: the kiddie pool (this is sectioned off and the adult pool with pool bar is next to it).

What was really sweet as I think we were also one of the few families with kids on the property was when the staff came at night for turn down service (they usually just give us chocolate) and gave us a jar of honey for Abigail’s cough. So thoughtful – thank you Royal Apollonia 

Visiting the capital, Narcosia, was pretty neat. We got to see more locals, have a typical Greek lunch, and do some shopping (no, we didn’t bring home a bird!).

 


📷: We had to get another Bebeaulait muslin infinity nursing scarf as she is constantly seeing Addison in it and wants to be just like mommy.

Travel tip: bring a scarf (muslin would be ideal since it folds up so compact in your bag) as it comes in handy in so many ways for you and your little.

📷: See you later Mediterranean Sea. 💟: Thrilled to wear my Bellaha flip flops to see the world. This shop gives back to support infant and maternal health around the world. Win, win ladies – pretty and comfy sandals that give back!

Cheers for now and thanks for reading. xx

Milkaholic. 

I think about you all day, everyday. How much will you make today?  When will you be replenished?  What should I wear for easy access?  Where will you be consumed? Anything I should eat or drink? Mamas – do you get me? Boys – see what we go through? 

Soo, here is what I discovered on what we can eat & drink to up our supply. Disclaimer: this is what worked for me, but we all know everybody is different. 

I have the 3 things I ate/drank that I believe did the trick. 

    Boobbix lactation cookies – I found a delicious company called Boobbix and they ship worldwide!  Katie started making these delicious cookies because she saw that USA made these but here in the U.K. It was harder to come by. So true since I didn’t discover I could eat cookies to produce more milk until my 5th week. 

    These cookies are tasty (4 flavors) and now I don’t feel bad with this dessert I have daily. Oatmeal chocolate is my personal favorite out of the 4. They’re so tasty my little wants a bite too. 

    Panda bear having some milk dreams while mum has a crazy sweet tooth. 

    Seaweed – this can be made as a soup (popular for Koreans) or salad. I prefer the Japanese style wakame salad. I made the sauce with the following ingredients: 

      Malt beer – of course the one I’m consuming is an U.K. Brand but any malt beer will do. These are non-alcoholic, caffeine free with a high content of Vitamin B. Tasty without the alcohol in it sadly. 

      And since seaweed salad and malt beer aren’t easy to pack for travels, these Boobbix cookies worked its magic on our recent holiday to Spain. I barely supplemented and nursed with my bebeaulait infinity muslin scarf. #thankyou for minimizing my cleaning of bottles!

      Cheers for now and thanks for reading about #momlife in this post. xx

      Dear Littles. 

      Isn’t it crazy to think as parents we will help in molding them to be grown ups? We will show them our habits (the crazy ones), skills (the daily ones), and our life experiences (the ones where they’re included). I’m astonished how intuitive Abigail is to our day to day and listening to me interact and portray myself. She is almost 3 year 5 months old and tells me things I would never expect to come out of her mouth.

      Top 3 in the past 24 hours:

      • I have nipples, mum and dad have nipples. Mum’s has milk to feed Addison but dad doesn’t. Why don’t I have any milk?
      • I want to be superman for Halloween. I am a girl. Can I still be superman?
      • I like you a lot mum. I like daddy and baby Addison too (me: who else?). No one else as much. Not even Grandma.

      These little things she says really makes me want to write/record to show her later but is there enough time in the day to do that?  I think I would opt to sleep since my #bellabeatleaf is telling me I need more sleep than the 3 hour average I’m getting which by the way is a gorgeous health tracker.

      Anyhow, I’m inspired by a mama I met on Instagram to write letters to my littles. She writes daily letters to baby M. They’re so sweet and I know her little is going to love reading them when she can.  So, I’m going to try real hard to include some of these notes in my blog posts.

      First one to my dear littles:

      Dear A squared,

      Abigail – I’m so sorry it has taken 3 years and 5 months to write you a note but better late than never right. You are my first and I love you so much. I may not show it as much with how sleep deprived I’ve been but you’re a shining star. You’re independent, strong willed, caring, and so loving to just name a few traits of you. I thought you would be jealous of the attention Addison is currently getting but you’ve been an amazing big sister and so helpful. I am so lucky to have a daughter like you. Just the other day you melted my heart when you said, “Mummy, I want to sit closer to you because I like you very much.” I pray you say this to me when you’re in high school or junior high. 

      Addison – oh my, you are currently 54 days old and I can honestly say it has not flown by. You are keeping us on our toes from being a light sleeper to cradle cap, but I’m forever in love with you when you smile at me with your happy eyes and mouth. It has been a crazy experience having you literally pop out and I am happy with the push present you got me as I really didn’t push much for you to come into this world. You also came early and didn’t want to share your birthday with me! 

      📷: Push present happy picture in the store.

      My littles – for now, I hope you two will share with each other and please don’t fight. Don’t ever go to sleep upset with each other. 

      Love, mama A  

      Product LOVE: Mochi KidsWest Coast Beads Shop

      Mama owner Amanda is too sweet just like her designs. Mochi Kids clothing is printed with 100% solvent free inks on American Apparel garments made in the USA. So, yes, they are super soft and toddler approved!

      Mama owner Laura from Canada is amazing! She specializes in functional and baby friendly teething necklaces. Yay! My toddler loves wearing them and I know they are safe on her with the safety clasp. I found her because I originally thought West Coast meant California not Canada.

      #shopsmall

      📷: clearly sisters. Do they look like me?

      📷: omg baby acne & cradle cap. 😢😓 Any remedy recommendations PLEASE?

      Cheers for now and thanks for reading. Maybe you will have some noodles now! xx

      Travel Bug is Back. 

      Baby Addison hit 6 weeks and we wanted a weekend getaway from London so we decided to go to Devon (about a 4 hour drive from central London – can be more with the painful traffic out of the city).

      As now a family of 4, I started thinking early on what to pack for a 2 night trip with a newborn and 3 year old (I can’t forget myself too, but I did forget hub’s toiletries – apparently as wife you’re suppose to remember to bring his shaver and hair gel).

      Newborn

      • nappies
      • wet wipes
      • 4 outfits
      • hat
      • face towel
      • nail clippers (oh so important at this stage!)
      • sleep accessories (e.g. sound maker, sleepyhead, blankets/swaddles)
      • Nuby bottles & pump

      3 year old

      • 3 outfits
      • 3 undies & socks
      • outerwear (something with a hood) and a scarf
      • 1 pair of shoes
      • pajamas & indoor slippers (once the weather is colder, they’re usually freshly picked moccasins to pack easily)
      • blankie (I always bring a muslin blankie as they’re compact and makes my little feel at home)
      • toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, face towel, lotion, shampoo, body wash, sunscreen)

      And can you believe all of the above fit into our BabyBeau diaper bag?  This diaper bag has it all and its so stylish in grey.  One of the most unique qualities it has is the extra layer (silky soft material) inside to take out and wash should something spill inside the bag. Good thinking!

      Furthermore, if you take out the extra layer to clean, there is still another zippered side pocket to put accessories in or if you just don’t want these compartments in the bag. I would probably put my ipad/laptop in this area with the extra layer if I didn’t use it as a weekend bag.

      Compartments – there are also just enough compartments to find things quickly in BabyBeau. The 4 side compartments are soft on the hands when you’re sifting through the bag and a nice addition that it can be taken out easily should you just want to pack something that doesn’t need to be separated.

      The diaper bag also came with a nice diaper changing pad (that didn’t actually fit in with BOTH my kiddos things) and insulated bottle holder – both lovely accessories to match the bag.  Inside the bag, there is also a detachable zippered pouch for small items (e.g. mommy items, snacks).

      I would have to say this bag is definitely well thought out and can transition with your family and doesn’t even have to be called a diaper bag, but a weekend bag due to its size (to note, I wouldn’t call the bag lightweight, but hey – it’s canvas with leather).

      BabyBeau Isabelle can be compacted to look smaller with the hooks on both sides of the bag. The bottom of the bag also has the 4 metal balls so the material isn’t touching sometimes dirty floors.

      We travel light and only bring necessities, but we’re also lucky in that we (and the kids) don’t have special products that we can’t live without besides now the MiaMily hipster carrier.– a practical carrier where you can run some errands in and not have to bring a diaper bag as well. YAY!

      We used ours for the first time this weekend and LOVE it. I didn’t have the original MiaMily carrier and used the Ergo with baby #1 so here are my thoughts.

      • Infant insert is so soft and perfect size for my 6 week old to keep her nice and secure in there.  There are 2 snaps to adjust as your infant grows
      • Carrier material is easy to clean and I was wearing a tank top so it didn’t hurt my shoulders or arms (no marks on me – it is also fall here in England so no feedback on hot weather, but for babe there is mesh lining inside which can be zippered down to be more breathable).
      • Shoulder and waist straps are easy to clip together and velcro can be adjusted easily.
      • Amazing feature is the zippered pouch below the seat of babe to put accessories in (e.g. bottle, diaper, phone, keys, snack) for some errands instead of bringing a bag. There is also a side mesh pouch to put a phone at – wow, MiaMily thought of everything!

      Any cons you might be thinking? I would have to say – hot, humid weather may be rough with the carrier and babe in it since the carrier isn’t a cotton material.  Another thing is that it doesn’t fold into a super compact size, but it does come with a travel bag that can also fit the infant insert in it.

      We chose to stay at an Airbnb for the weekend and found the cutest place – The Lakehouse. Our place overlooked our own little lake and it was so peaceful minus Addison crying a lot. The owner also had sheep, alpacas, pigs, and dogs which absolutely made Abigail’s weekend to play and see them. Beautiful countryside property and would highly recommend (one thing – bring your own toiletries, none provided).


      These alpacas were insanely cute and soft.

      Daddy and daughter selfie with the pigs (piglets in the back too).

      We were going to do a baby animal petting zoo for Abigail’s 4th birthday, but seeing her with the cockapoos, probably not.

      The property. – this building was a Roman bathhouse back in the day.

      We also checked out the town before we left back to London in our Joovy. Abigail LOVES to roll in this as she can also keep a close eye on her baby sister. This double stroller is definitely more suitable in a spacious setting like here. Big perks – super smooth wheels, can put a car seat on it, and kickboard for toddler to stand on built in.

      Loved our much needed weekend getaway and looking forward to our next adventure in October.

      Cheers for now and thanks for reading. xx

      It’s One Month. 

      Do you start your day with a list of things you’re going to do and wonder why at the end of the day you didn’t finish it? I’m currently on that boat with having a now one month old.

      Addison is a tough egg to crack. She’s a super light sleeper and it sure has been a struggle getting her to sleep and then keeping her asleep. Painful is what I would call it so here’s to hoping month two is better in our flat.

      BUT, at least she has some cute accessories from some amazing shops. 

      📷: Hello world! I’m all smiles for mummy. 

      Product LOVES (serious Liberty love!)

      Mille & Bee – this mama gives back a portion of her proceeds from Liberty hair bands to a UK miscarriage association. Amazing! 

      Made by Jay – baby and children’s clothing in Liberty print along with other cute accessories. She also knits shoes too! 

      📷: Millie & Bee even sent this lovely card as well. 

      📷: Product LOVE: Lorena Canals

      2 words for the extra clean mom – machine washable. This sold me quickly and I’m in love with this rug. My 3 year old also takes her daily naps after nursery on it and insists she sleep on London. So, yes it is soft and thick enough for a toddler to nap on! 

      On a happy note from one mama to another (sorry if you’re a male reading this!), 1 month post partum and everyone keeps telling me I’m looking great and what is the secret. Here goes (drum roll please):

      Product LOVE: Belly Bandit

      From maternity to post, Belly Bandit has me covered. I wore the upsie belly during pregnancy and it totally helped with back support and all the walking I was doing. It also had the hot/cold pack which was wonderful to use on the back as well.

      After giving birth, I started wearing the bamboo belly bandit with belly shield and have been for a month now. It has been helpful as you can hopefully see and has made me feel better – now if the stretch marks would just magically disappear!

      OK, now the true secret – ladies, I know you’re looking for the perfect black leggings – here they are – Mother Tucker leggings. I’m wearing them in a small.


      Heading to check out the gorgeous London Aquatics centre by the late Zaha Hadid. This is pretty neat to check out if you want to visit Queen Elizabeth Olympic park (also across from the mall). There is a fun playground with sand for kids, the world tallest tunnel slide, water fun, and a river!  Worth checking out if you’re visiting for a week with kids! 

      Quick note, the diaper backpack I’m wearing is from Jujube. They have a huge collection of styles and just launched a new selection. I must agree that their bag is light and a perfect fit for this mama of two so far. LOVE – the one I have is called the Black Widow from the Be Right Back collection. 

      📷: Now, please give mama some sleep too.

      Cheers for now and thanks for reading (would love if you subscribe – I promise I won’t “spam” you). xx

      Falling Apples Here.

      Oh so sad to feel fall is here. It is like it was never here with this crazy London weather. Last year was not like this as I clearly remember calling the landlord and asking how to turn on the air conditioning since it was so hot & humid.  He proceeded to tell me it’s not common for London flats to have a/c since it is only hot a handful of days and to just open the windows (oh so true!).  Another thing not common to have are screens on the windows – not a big bug/mosquito problem here! 👍🏻

      Anyhow, when I think of fall, I think of apples (although I haven’t gotten the chance to go apple picking).  Now, throw in a 3 year old toddler and I’m thinking crafts and food. I love looking at Pinterest for ideas, but I do try to restrict the time I spend on there as my hubs keeps relaying I should be sleeping when the newborn is.

      I found this amazing blogger named Kimberly and love her website with both crafts and recipes. She had exactly what I was looking for: apple crafts.  I can’t wait to try some with my little on some of the rainy weekends to come.

      OK, OK – it’s time to talk rain gear since we live in London.  I couldn’t be happier with what we have for our first little. We went with Hatley since it’s popular in London with its stylish prints and terry cloth lining inside and of course I found an apple print.  Did you know they’re based in Canada and ship worldwide?  Now, time to find something for mama! Any favorite brands you have?

      Showing some Hatley love with her raincoat and boots. This is from their new fall collection. #soinlove

      📷: Photobombed by my little. Baby wearing wrap from Beluga Baby. They use bamboo material and it’s amazing.  Super soft and stretchy just enough for babe to be comfy. Also, very breatheable and I’m not sweating in it!  Can this be my outfit everyday? #musthave

      📷: Sunday funday was checking out the #greatfire350 of London. They burned this 120 foot display later in the day to celebrate its 350th anniversary.

      📷: She’s ready for fall…

      I am for pumpkin spice!

      Don’t forget – love my watch? I partnered with JORD for a giveaway. Enter now

      Cheers for now and thanks for stopping by. xx

      The Rollercoaster Ride of Being a Mum.  

      Seriously, it’s been a roller coaster ride getting this breastfeeding down. The art of supply and demand with production of milk is definitely a work in progress and it has been rough with engorged and clogged milk ducts (thankfully, no mastitis).

      I didn’t give much of a try to nursing my first and opted to pump and supplement with formula as I didn’t have much milk after a month.  Now I understand why I didn’t have much – the contact with nursing seems to be play a huge factor to building your milk production.  The sounds (cries) my babe makes now even causes my boobs to tingle and milk come out! WHOA, our body is crazy on what it does. 😯

      This time around I decided my goal was to nurse and pump to maintain my sanity in saving time on cleaning/sterilizing the pump and bottles (Ok, I’m being lazy but that’s like 10 minutes of extra sleep in!).  My hubs is thinking the big savings on not spending money on formula. 💲💲

      Pumping 

      I decided to get a new pump because I wanted it to be smaller/travel friendly.  With all the research I did, I opted for the Nuby Natural Touch Digital Electric Breast Pump based on the size and how it looked.

      • 💟 After using it this past week – I’m in love for the following reasons: 
        • simple to use (on/off) with 5 settings for suction and speed.
        • stimulation and expression functions to get the let-down going and then express function starts automatically to get the milk in the bottle (you can continue watching that show with no interruptions)!
        • small and portable (I think you can get a battery pack for it as well)
        • EASY to clean/sterilize (so important)
        • suction for the boob is made of silicone so it’s comfortable! yay for our boobs!

      Did you know?

      Nûby is the UK’s No.1 teether and No.2 cup brand (source: IRI 52 w/e 16.06.15) and has won numerous prestigious awards including Mother&Baby, Practical Parenting, Prima Baby and Loved by Parents for Newborn Feeding, Drinking, Teething & Toys which are all independently tried and tested and voted for by parents themselves. Nûby provides high quality, innovative products that are inspired by nature and make the lives of babies and parents easier, simpler and more fun.

      OK, so one of the bigger questions I had was when can I introduce the pacifer to the babe since I was scared she would get confused on how to latch on?  Addison didn’t have to wait too long (approx. 2 weeks old) to get a pacifier, so of course, we got an adorable clip to go with her paci.

      Product LOVE: Blue Brontide

      • This amazing mama run shop of organic baby accessories has handmade products in her England studio along with eco friendly sourced products. Super cute and an one stop shop to sustainable accessories. 

      📷: Organic dummy/pacifier clip by Blue Brontide

      And when you get one present to a little, you have to give the first little something as well.  We decided to do breakfast in bed this past Sunday with her since she told me that Addison and I were always in bed drinking milk. 😜

      📷: Fruit in bed with 2 adorable products sold by Blue Brontide:


      📷: So in love with using wood products (as you can tell!). Don’t forget – I partnered with Jord Watches to run a GIVEAWAY where one winner will receive a $75 gift card and every ENTRANT will automatically receive a $20 gift card toward any watch. 


      Cheers for now and thanks for reading! xx