It’s a “grand” life for A. 

With my second little, it has been quite different in so many ways. My older little was in her own crib by 2.5 months, got pumped breastmilk along with formula, and slept through the night by 3 months. My second little, however, is still in our room, gets nursed along with formula, and still has yet to sleep through the night at 8 months! 

One thing that has made the world of a difference in helping her sleep longer as a newborn is the dockatot. While we were living in London, we got the European version (where dockatot originated from) called the sleepyhead. This was seriously a godsend with sleeping in our cozy London flat and all the travels we did. We didn’t need to buy her a crib or borrow from the hotel, because this was perfect as she didn’t roll over until about 7 months. 

We enjoyed it in all the countries we visited after she was born. 


📷 loc: Limassol, Cyprus 


📷 loc: our cozy London flat

📷 loc: Heathrow airport dockatot deluxe (fits easily on the stroller!)


📷 loc: Exeter, England

Anyhow, we decided to upgrade to the Dockatot grand since she felt so secure and cozy in the deluxe. With the grand, she loves to sprawl out in it, sit up, and rest her head on the border. Hopefully, with this transition she will learn to sleep with her head at the top of the bed unlike her sister who does flips throughout the night.  We are also hoping this will ease her into the transition to her own room by 9 months. #fingerscrossed

We also took the Dockatot Grand with us to Las Vegas since we drove and it was wonderful poolside. Many compliments on how portable and comfortable she looked in it. 


So, yes Addison has a grand life with this upgrade. Check out the difference in size below. (It’s true when they say the deluxe will last your little until 8 months). 

Cheers for now and yes dockatot has been a lifesaver. #baby #musthave

Cooking Must Have. 

I’m the type of person that follows the phrase – “sharing is caring.” So, when I finally got to try from a dear friend of mine in London this magic kitchen appliance I fell in love. I just knew I had to purchase one. 

Can you guess it? Nope, not the instant pot (which I LOVE as well). It’s an air fryer – not to be confused with a deep fryer. 

📷: chicken wings. Recipe – Use frozen wings and add a little bit of olive oil along with seasoning. My new favorite is with creole seasoning. 

This is amazing. I have set it out on my counter since I use it daily if not twice a day. Quick and easy to use/clean. 


📷: sweet potato wedges. Recipe – cut sweet potatoes into desired sizes. Add olive oil and seasoning into ziplock bag with the sweet potatoes. Mix and stick in freezer for more moist fries inside. No need if you like it more crispy. 

Seriously, you can cook anything with it. From raw meats (e.g. Wings, spare ribs) to cauliflower, this appliance is a must have. Or it can be just reheating foods! 

Tip – raw meats coming from the freezer taste even better since it retains the moisture. I haven’t tried with fish yet – soon enough! 


📷: corn tortilla chips almost cooked. Recipe – cut small corn tortillas into quarters. Spray some olive oil and lightly season. 


Anyhow, quick post – take a break and do a little online shopping. Cheers for now. 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

      OMG 60 Days. 

      Some mums say it’s flown by but I definitely don’t think it has. I think the first 3 months will be the hardest to get adjusted and try to figure out the new member of the family. Sleep deprivation is taking its toll and I’m averaging 5 hours total of sleep which is actually not too bad if it was an uninterrupted 5 hours total (I have #bellabeatleaf for helping me see that). Good thing now I can have as much caffeine as I want and its PSL season too.

      Comparing Addison with Abigail, Addison seems completely different. She is needier (wants to be held more so baby wearing has been so helpful!), smiles more at this age, observant and seems to listen to what I’m saying. Is that crazy?

      When I say listen to what I’m saying, I mean when I talk to Addison. I’ve never been big on “baby talk,” and will speak in a normal voice with sentences/phrases so when talking to her it really seems like she’s listening to me and responding. Granted it’s only 3 things that I have a question/action for her currently. Can you guess them?

      1. Are you hungry? Look at me if you want milk. 
      2. Do you want your diaper changed? Look at me if you want it changed. 
      3. Stretch your legs. Stretch. 

      And it is crazy because she actually does it!!

      My 4th which we’re still struggling with is “stop crying…please stop crying.” She’s a 50/50 on this and boy it’s been rough!

      😂

      Anyhow, a little note to you Addison.

      Dear A,

      When I pick you up from crying, and you give me a smile it melts my heart and at the same time I think, “darn, I fell for you again for wanting me to pick you up and just hold you for a looong time!” 

      At 2 months, you love to be swaddled (but still break free) and enjoy having your muslin blankets in your face. Good thing they’re so breathable I don’t get too worried anymore.

      You currently have cradle cap which is driving mama crazy so it’s a good thing you love taking baths since you’re getting a lot of coconut oil in your scalp which seems to be working. We’re also loving the MomME eco natural skincare line for you.  It certainly gets the coconut oil out of your hair so you don’t look like you have greasy hair all day and keeps your skin hydrated and smelling good.  Mum approved and the ingredients are lovely.

      I can say you’re averaging 5 hours of sleep from midnight to morning which is bliss if I didn’t have to pump during that time! This is amazing to not have to feed you at this time except you’re in our room and make a lot of noises (e.g. cries, screams, snoring). Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a bedroom for you? At least we have the Sleepyhead for you which has been a savior to getting you to sleep safely and bring in our travels.

      If we’re in a car, and you notice there is traffic you clearly voice your opinion to us.

      One thing is clear, you love to be out and about in the MiaMily carrier but I can’t trick you that long sitting down or standing still.  I know, I know you want me to burn more calories and show the Bellabeat leaf I’m well above an average person’s activity.



      Happy 2 months! Oh yea, you LOVE to look at yourself in mummy’s books. All my books have a mirror in the back. #lovebooksbyAJ

      Cheers for now and thanks for reading. xx

      Home Stretch. 

      OMG, 38 weeks pregnant and I should probably have my hospital bag packed and ready to go (along with bottles and baby products that go in the mouth sterilized and clothes/bibdanas/muslin blankies washed). Good thing my mum came in this past Saturday to help with my super chatty little bugaboo, Abigail. ♥️

      Back to the hospital bag, I was finally able to talk to a doctor and nurse about the whole labor/delivery/after process (quite the waiting game at the hospital is what it looks like) and now I’m all set on what I need to bring/provide for baby girl NHS style.

      • Nappies
      • Hat
      • Formula
      • Clothes

      Guess that’s everything (I won’t be needing a spare empty bag like the US). 😉

      To note: private rooms can run to £800/night but being in the hospital ward (4 to a room) is free. Earphones/plugs – hello, I will need you.

      No worries on bunking with other Brits as I’ll still make our stay comfy with some key items below.

      • Lalabu soothe shirt – I can’t wait to baby wear my newborn. Also, they’re an amazing shop, they give 2% of all sales back to moms in Africa, supporting mom entrepreneurs through micro-finance. I can’t wait to use my shirt with my little as the material is so soft. They also just came out with new colors. 😍
      • Belly bandit bamboo wrap – I recommend the bamboo material as its much softer and we’re so sensitive in that area with just giving birth. I also got the belly shield to apply oils and lotions since sadly I did not get the lucky genes of stretchy perfect skin to keep my wrap clean.
      • Small Stuff bibdana to keep baby clean and styling 
      • Thebobbinbelle Muslin swaddle and Muslin blankie – I can’t rave enough how this new small shop has the cutest designs.  This mama also does custom ones so definitely ask! The blankie is approximately 45″ x 45″ so something even my now 3 year old still uses.
      • Nuby breast pump – Oh so portable and looks easy to use. I know the hospital will provide a pump should I need it, but figured I will bring to get used to this new device.
        • Digital Breast Pump has won the 2016 Prima Baby Magazine SIlver Award for the best electric breast pump.

      • Anna Crochet Knit panda bear beanie – found this sweet mama on Instagram and she takes custom orders as I’ve been getting so many panda bear prints (monochrome love). If you’re interested, her email is anna.crochet.knit@gmail.com
      • TWELVE little changing pad – this one came with my diaper backpack and has 12 different animals on it to represent one year of the 12-year cycle based on the Chinese zodiac. The year the person is born determines their animal sign. Curious which animal you are? Check here.
      • Wubbanub hippo – Abigail loved hers so we figured we would get one for baby.  With the stuffed animal attached to the pacifier, it helps to not fall far away from baby
      • Motherlove nipple cream – I swear by this from Abigail. All organic ingredients. LOVE
      • Footed onsies – I even got zippered ones just to make my life a lot easier. 

      Of course, even with the new baby girl coming, we want to make sure Abigail isn’t forgotten and always my #1 bugaboo. We took her out and about with a new dress from Petit Peony and she was ecstatic (she insists on wearing a dress daily – rain or shine). I hope this dress-loving toddler lasts forever. 👗

      We are swooning over Petite Peony for a couple reasons that will get you to fall in love with this mama of three.

      • She donates to children from Room To Grow (I also donate 25% of my net proceeds from my F is For Fox book to this amazing non-profit! #lovebooksbyAJ)
      • Petit Peony‘s designs are a modern take on classic designs
      • This mama’s shop is in over 85 boutiques in US and was also just featured in British Vogue August issue. Awesome!
      • They only use 100% premium and organic cotton.

      📷: Background of the Shard – the tallest building in London.

      📷: I thought this would be my favorite #bfgdreamjars piece to bid on but looks a lot different live. More on the dream jar trail (see previous post).

      📷: Walking the line on Tower Bridge

      📷:: A little break at this cool and yummy establishment. 1st floor – tavern, 2nd floor – pizzeria, 3rd floor – grill.  We ate at the pizzeria and enjoyed a nice outdoor view with tasty food!

      📷: Seriously, moms helping moms on getting a reversible wrap dress – two dresses in one. Stains be gone in a flash.

      📷: Cheers for now and thanks for reading. xx

      G is for Great Greece. 

      Part 2: Delphi & Meteora

      Simply amazing. Pictures don’t do these two cities justice especially Meteora and the majestic monasteries sitting atop these cliffs dating back to the 1300s.

      Delphi

      📷: On the drive to Delphi

      📷: Cute little town of Delphi

      Travel Recommended Product:

      • Bobble is our go to bottle for Abigail as it has a filter and doesn’t leak. Although, after looking at it’s website, I don’t see the small bottle that Abigail uses listed anymore (18.5 oz is what they have which may be a little heavy for a 2 year old). #bobble help!

      📷: Our guide at the Delphi Ruins


      📷: Finally warmed up a bit to not wear a jacket (end of April).

        


      Product LOVE:

      • This girl has to take off the bracelets while eating. We love our pineapple bracelet from Zopihi.  They have the cutest children’s jewelry designed in Austin, inspired by Maui.  The best thing about their products are they are lead, cadium, and phthalates free. Mums – go check them out!


      Meteora


      📷: Crazy wind makes a crazy #mombun


        

      📷: The Meteora – one of the largest and most important complexes of Eastern Orthodox monasteries in Greece, second only to the Mount Athos. More info, check out wikipedia


      📷: Along the drive in the mountains there were these stands – I wonder exactly what the significance is. Anyone know?

      Travel recommended product:

      • We are in love with our passport holder from Up & Away. It’s easy to hold the passports together with up to a family of 5, putting your cards in one spot, and some cash as well. If you travel as much as us, you can also stick extra landing cards in there! And, I can’t forget that you can choose from a variety of colors and patterns for the interior and exterior – keeping the jet setting family in style!  LOVE – make these a perfect Mother’s Day present. *hint, hint.

      📷: The town of Meteora. We ate at the Gardenia (pictured left) which was just OK, but as always friendly service.

      Product LOVE:

      • My little loves her Mini Melissa shoes – she thinks she’s walking the catwalk!  Definitely be prepared for how quickly they will get scuffed up.  Cool thing – they have this baby powder smell. No stinky feet for her!

      📷: We stayed at the Grand Meteora Hotel which was nice that it is new with a gorgeous view of the rocks. However, if you’re looking for strong wi-fi or pool after your hike around Meteora, this definitely isn’t the place for you.

      • Tip: I always read and write reviews from trip advisor.  I’ve found them generally pretty accurate for the hotels. Food wise – it’s definitely a hit or miss. 



      📷: view from our balcony

      Cheers for now!