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

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36 Weeks Pregnant. 

My hubs always says it is only 9 months and I always have to correct him and say it’s actually 40 weeks which is 10 months of sacrifices. 🙄

Pregnancy the second time around has been a little bit more relaxing as I’m not stressing about everything and I feel I know what to expect when baby girl #2 comes. One thing I’ve been really focused on is making sure I’m showering lots of love and attention to my first – Abigail. 😘  We talk about baby sister a lot and what she will share and help me with to what she cannot eat or play with yet. It’s crazy at 3 years and 3 months what she remembers from these “deep” conversations we have. Love it.

We’ve been getting happy mail post for both her and baby so I always want her to feel extra special when mail is for her and she gets to wear it first.  She loves when I tell her baby sister gets it as a “hand me down.”

She loved happy mail post from Hatley since she adores wearing dresses and twirling like a ballerina or just busting a groove with finally good London weather (well one day at least). So, we have been going around town and just spending mummy and daughter time. ♥️

I fell in love with Hatley for the bright colors and adorable prints and even more in love when I read their about us page. They support an orphanage in India called Open Door Mercy Home Trust – home to 22 boy and girls. How amazing to know they are doing this as giving back to the community is high on my agenda with my children books as well.

📷: Oh, Hatley you can even make my little dance in a smock dress.

📷: How cute is this blouse? She loves the horses and silver stripes on it. #toddlerapproved #hatley

📷: Superstar status

📷: This dress was hands down her favorite as she loves strawberries and pink. We’re on the Millennium bridge heading back home from Tate Modern.



📷: Fall collection is coming soon so be sure to keep an eye out for Hatley that also gives back – my kind of shop. ♥️♥️

Mamas & Papas – what else do you do in preparation for the soon to be expired only child status? I would love to hear! xx

LOOKBOOK BELOW
I just couldn’t resist taking more pictures with these adorable prints from Hatley. They have women’s clothing as well and some are perfect for twinning with your little!  LOVE.


Cheers for now and don’t forget to stop and enjoy life’s little things (like lavender). 😎

Liberty London Love. 

I just can’t get over how these Liberty London flower prints got me and millions of other people swooning over them. They are too precious! Maybe I love it more since we live in London. 🇬🇧♥️ More on specifically Flowers of Liberty.  

Currently, there is a lot of Liberty prints at uniqlo – I wanted to add I love their line called airism. Amazing, especially the bra camisole. Perfect length and so comfy. I don’t know how I’m going to be able to go back to wearing a bra! Sorry, #tmi ☺️

Shop Small LOVE

One of the first small shops (and she just launched!) that I found on IG that made Liberty print dresses was Madebyjay. She was a pleasure to work with and omg her packaging and details are wonderful. The dress came at a perfect length and my little loves it. We actually have matching prints but mine is a tank top from Uniqlo that she said the flowers are much bigger on my growing belly 😂. You have to love that candid honesty in a kid. 

📷 : cute buttons at the top to take on and off easily. It would be pretty awesome if it was reversible as its thin and perfect for warm weather. 

📷 : if you’re really sweet, Madebyjay may even throw in a pair of bloomers. ♥️

📷 : Loves it with her cons of course. Ready to run amuck! 

Of course, if you give a girl a dress, you have to give her an accessory (just like giving a mouse a cookie 🍪). I’ll highlight just one bow shop that I love since she’s also an expat from the USA living in London like me! Her shop just opened as well and this mama couldn’t be more sweet. She also makes bow ties for your little dude too! 

Shop small LOVE: MaddieandMeLondon 

  • We got several items but my little got to them before I could snap some pictures. The last 2 before she insisted she open them. The headband will be adorable on baby girl – super soft. 

📷 : twinning in their bows at princess Diana’s memorial playground. 

Cheers for now and thanks for reading! xx

First Day of Summer. 

Well hello, first day of summer in London & worst morning ever.

I’m not going to make my blogs a rant or vent session, but this one takes the cake as capturing it all with a huge bit of “sweet” in it.

It’s June and yet another pouring rain morning. I had thought of uber – my favorite means of transportation, but thought “hey, it’s not too bad of a downpour and I save £5 which can be shopping money.”

So, we both trek off with our umbrellas and holding hands. I’m also holding her big art folder which serves as a great belly shield from the sideways rain. Good times. 😡

While crossing the street, Abigail trips and takes me down with her. Both of us are sprawled on the gravel! I immediately pull her up and ask if she’s ok. She’s fighting back tears and says she’s wet but ok. She asks me if I’m ok and then proceeds to ask if baby is ok. 😮♥️ Wow, did my 3 year old just ask about her future little sister? In the midst of the dreadful rain while she’s all wet with probably sore or bloodied knees, she thought of her little sister. I couldn’t have had a more proud mama moment and know she’s ready to be a big sister.

Ok, well back to being a 3 year old – she couldn’t hold her pee in for the rest of the walk (.6 mile walk to nursery) and had an accident. Nothing like rain water and peepee to change her out of before 9am.

I, on the other hand, have an swollen left ankle, cut up knees and 31 weeks pregnant. But, I think of the silver lining behind all this – this little bugaboo is ready to be a big sister. ♥️


📷: Current favorite reads & toy (included in GH special edition set – size to scale!). #lovebooksbyAJ side note – thank you for all the orders. Keep it coming to donate more to building a school for Bangladesh children. www.ajangsley.com #giveback 

She’s ready to give hugs. 📷: With her favorite big doggy, Buzz.

She’s ready to push her around. 📷: With her gal pal in NorCal.

She’s ready to play. 📷: With her nursery mate at the playground.

She’s ready to walk to nursery on her own. Kidding!

Product LOVE
📷: Serious love for this shop – peytons lane. This mama from Texas handmade this and it’s adorable. The details down to the stitching and patterns chose are perfect.  Check her out!

Cheers for now and hope your Monday is better than mine!

Love Freshly Picked. 

Who doesn’t need a pair (or several) pairs of moccasins? I’m a fan of the show Shark Tank – a show that can give you funding to dream big if you come up with that one idea/product that can make millions. This is also a franchise of the international format, Dragons’ Den from Japan.

How I wish my children’s alphabet books series could get on this show! 

This company called Freshly Picked caught my attention while on the show so I had to get a pair as Susan’s story is truly inspirational. Starting back in 2009 and growing so much since then with a following of 614k on Instagram and probably sales through the roof.  Wow!
I can easily say my 3 year old daughter loves her freshly picked. She currently has 2 pairs in London which she uses one pair for nursery (they switch shoes once inside) and the other is currently used in our flat.  I can’t wait to get the next step (hard soles) once her feet get bigger so she wear them outdoors all day long.

AND get this:

  • @10am MST May 25th
  • EVERYTHING in the shop will be 25% off
  • Lasts for 24-hours only

My thoughts of Freshly Picked. 



Love

  • She can put them on herself.
  • No left & right to have to worry about. Yay!
  • Incredibly soft from the beginning (no “breaking in” involved).
  • No stinky feet smell!
  • Toddler approved.
  • The sole gets her little feet imprints on there. Precious!

A little less love 

  • We have the “merci” mocs and the pattern is nice but not as soft as the brown mocs we also have. She definitely has a favorite pair.
  • Not exactly city appropriate with all the debris on the sidewalks and streets. Recommend for those living in the suburbs.
  • London rain and cold doesn’t go well with mocs unless you’re not OCD like me. 😬

  

📷: my little helper #lovebooksbyaj

Cheers for now and thank you for reading/supporting! Don’t forget about the sale on May 25th.

www.ajangsley.com