Nesting

Spring Porch Decor // March & April

The number one reason I fell in love with this house was because of the porch. I love the idea of sitting out on the porch on a warm summer morning or a cool fall evening to just relax, read, or chat with my husband. I would love to spend more time out there to meet my neighbors and just soak in some outdoors. Making a porch a place to actually spend time takes some time, but ours is starting to come along.

Last summer, I strung up some bright colored paper lantern lights that have just become a year-round staple and for Christmas, Jeremiah built me a porch swing. ๐Ÿ˜€ The swing still needs to be sanded, stained, and probably painted, but it’s out there and almost ready for use. Once it’s up, I’m pretty sure my time on the porch will quadruple!! Last year, I also found a used wooden console table with heart cutouts that I painted and stuck between our door and one of the windows. So slowly, but surely the porch is coming along!

When we first bought the house I was gung-ho on decorating every inch of the places for the changing seasons and holidays, but not going to lie, that has slowed down. With Hazel getting older and more mobile, I was just too exhausted to care. Now my thing is just decorating the front porch for seasons and holidays. It’s less stressful and a bit more fun! This will be my first year taking a stab at decorating for spring.

I’ve been loving keeping all my notes and ideas and lists in my Google Drive, so I started a folder for porch decor and got a document started to keep track of all my spring decor ideas and items I thought might look cute out there. For budget reasons, this will be a thing that gets more and better every year, so this year is pretty minimal, but I like it still!

The Stuff

Hobby Lobby

Etsy

Future Decor Ideas

I have so many ideas for how I can add to the porch for springtime. I love the idea of some kind of wreath – there are so many cute options out there from traditional wreaths to umbrella wreaths. I’d also like to include flowers – lots and lots of flowers – specifically tulips, roses, and baby’s breath. And then of course finding cute pillows for the swing for when it is up and ready!

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Bump Updates, Jameson, Pregnancy

Bump Update: 32 Weeks

I’m so close, yet it feels so far! At 32 weeks, I am in the third trimester and just beginning my eighth month of pregnancy. Only eight weeks to go and it can’t come fast enough.

Jameson is as big as a cantaloupe – a very long and heavy cantaloupe. ๐Ÿ˜€ He is measuring roughly 17 inches long and weighing 5 pounds. I swear he is huge! I feel him constantly – always poking his butt or feet against something.

The symptoms have been coming in hot the past few weeks. I am pretty much always uncomfortable. Hip and pelvic pain when I sit or lay down, so standing is the most pleasant, except for when my feet start to hurt. It makes sleeping extremely difficult. Still some heartburn and a little bit of swelling in the feet. Finally starting to want him out.

We had a wonderful shower and have basically everything we need for baby boy. His room is complete and I cannot wait to share it with y’all. I’ve gotten my TDAP shot and now it’s just a waiting game!

Faith, Family

But by the grace of God I am what I am // Easter 2021

Living, He loved me
Dying, He saved me
Buried, He carried my sins far away
Rising, He justified freely forever

Happy Easter Friends!

We had such a lovely day celebrating Jesus’ resurrection and I hope you all did too.

Our day started off bright and early with a 9am church service. It was a great service reminding us of what Easter is all about. We read from 1 Corinthians 15. I loved verse 10: “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect.”

After church, we headed to my parents’ house for lunch and some activities. We started with decorating cookies. We thought it would be fun to give Hazel some sprinkles and let her shake them over some sugar cookies. Our sweet little lady poured the entire container of sprinkles on one cookie. ๐Ÿ˜€ So we ended up just grabbing from the pile to get some on the other cookies. When asked if she could say sprinkles, she grabbed a handful and shoved them into her mouth. Priceless!

Once the cookies were in the oven, we moved on to dying eggs. I haven’t dyed eggs in years, but I really wanted to start the tradition again. I grabbed the egg dye kits and was just going to bring a carton of eggs. I had no clue you are supposed to hard boil your eggs and have vinegar, luckily my mom came through! We only did six eggs – one for each of us – but turned out Hazel wasn’t too into it. She dropped one egg into the dye before bursting into tears and refusing to do any more. I think when she heard eggs, she thought she was going to get to eat them.

Since it was a small bunch of us this year, we kept it simple. A cookout. Burgers, chips, and deviled eggs… what else do you need?

We didn’t have time to do her Easter basket before church (and I actually kind of liked that!), so we took it over to my parents and Hazel got to open it there. She wasn’t too interested in her stuffed narwhal or the book, but wanted me to open the chalk right away and we played with the ring toss game right off the bat. I’d call it a win! Also, I’m sure this goes without saying, but we don’t do the Easter Bunny. Our kids will know that their baskets are gifts from Jeremiah and I – they are gifts in representation of God giving us the greatest gift of His son.

Once her basket was emptied, she was ready for her first egg hunt! While she was napping, Jeremiah and I went out and hid all the eggs. We didn’t hide them too hard, but we did give her some freebies just laying in plain sight. She was so cute out there looking for the eggs. She wasn’t too interested in finding them all and then opening them, but instead wanted to open them as she found them. With coaxing, she would look for them – pointing and saying the color before grabbing it. Eventually, she got them all. She had a blast opening them up and getting all the goodies inside – no candy, just little toys like bouncy balls, bracelets, and stickers.

It was such a wonderful, relaxing day. Lots of family, lots of fun, and lots of laughter. Couldn’t have asked for a better holiday!

Family

Hazel’s First Easter Basket

Last year I totally dropped the ball on Easter. With the pandemic being on the rise and not being sure what our holiday plans would look like, Easter just snuck up on me. But this year, I was set on not missing anything and of course I lost track of time, but I did get the basket together.

I was excited to start doing Easter baskets this year, especially because Hazel is a little bit older and will actually be excited about some of the goodies. I figured I would do the baskets like we did in my family growing up, but as I started thinking about it, I could not remember any of my Easter baskets as a kid, so I set to Pinterest. That was a mistake as some people apparently spend hundreds of dollars on their kids’ Easter baskets. That just isn’t something I could do this year, so I just started with the few ideas I had and went from there. And I didn’t get everything I planned on, but she will enjoy it just the same.

Goodies in the Basket

  • Stuffed Narwhal
  • Sidewalk Chalk – Sticks
  • Sidewalk Chalk – Eggs
  • Ring Toss Game
  • Board Book

Not sure why I decided to get two things of sidewalk chalk, but it will be Hazel’s first experience with chalk, so I am really looking forward to a family day of decorating our path up to the front door and seeing if Hazel enjoys it or not. I also think the simple ring toss game will get a lot of use and be a fun way to develop motor skills and hand-eye coordination.

I had hoped to put some spring pajamas and bubbles in the basket as well, but ended up not wanting to wait till Easter to give Hazel some new pjs and couldn’t find any bubbles I liked.

How Much Did I Spend?

Because of how overwhelmed I was with the budgets on some of the Easter basket inspiration I found online, I wanted to be completely transparent with how much I spent on Hazel’s basket. I didn’t set a specific budget, but I wanted to keep it close to $30.

  • Stuffed Narwhal – $12 (on clearance at Target)
  • Sidewalk Chalk – Sticks – $1 (dollar section at Target)
  • Sidewalk Chalk – Eggs – $1 (dollar section at Target)
  • Ring Toss Game – $5 (dollar section at Target)
  • Board Book – $5 (Marshall’s)

I spent $24 on the goodies in the basket and $10 on the actual basket, so $34 in all.

All in all, I had a lot of fun putting together Hazel’s Easter basket and am happy with how it turned out. I am looking forward to watching her “unbox” it this weekend.

Pregnancy

My 4 Pregnancy Must-Haves

As a pretty easy-going pregnant woman, I wanted to share my four simple pregnancy must-haves with you. When you first find out you’re pregnant, you want to make sure you are prepared, so you end up on a Google or Pinterest rabbit hole of lists upon lists of stuff you just have to have to have a successful pregnancy. I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be super complicated… and this is coming from the girl who bought pickles in preparation for cravings that I just never had.

Now I just want to reiterate the easy-going part. Don’t hate me, but I have yet to get morning sickness, nausea, or cravings. So my list is simple, because my pregnancies have been simple. I won’t recommend any item that I haven’t actually used, tried, and found helpful. So with that being said, my list doesn’t have anything to help those awful pregnancy symptoms that I have not had to deal with. If you are dealing with those things, I think my list can be a great starting point for general pregnancy and I hope you find it something on here helpful!

Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter

This lotion/cream has been amazing through both of my pregnancies so far. With Hazel, I tried a few different stretch mark keep-away creams before finding the Burt’s Bees option and it is by far my favorite. It feels like lotion – not too thick, not too gooey, not too greasy – and absorbs really easily. Others I tried, I felt so gross afterward that I didn’t even want to put on a shirt, because it would stick to me as would everything else. This is NOT like that. I feel like it works best applying it right after a shower or bath. You can even use it on your breasts, butt, and thighs… really anywhere you could get a stretch mark. With my previous pregnancy, I used it through the second and third trimester and have no stretch marks. This pregnancy, I have used it since the first trimester, so fingers crossed I get the same results.

Multiple Pillows

I am not typically a lot of pillows person or a fluffy pillow person. PrePregnancy I sleep with one ridiculously flat pillow. When I got pregnant the first time everyone was telling me I needed to get a pregnancy pillow. I looked them up and contemplated for a long time and decided not to get one and to see how long I could sleep comfortably with what I had. I like sleeping near my husband too and many of those pregnancy pillows make it hard for two to sleep comfortably in bed together. So I start out with my usual sleeping arrangement and as my pregnancy progresses and belly gets larger, I just add a pillow. Around the second trimester when I can no longer sleep on my stomach, I add a pillow between my knees and one extra pillow under my head. Then as the heartburn worsens, I just add a pillow behind my head and adjust the angle at which I’m sleeping. Otherwise, I don’t need anything fancy.

Tums

Heartburn is one of my number one pregnancy symptoms. It hit me hard the first time and it is hitting me even harder this time. Tums has been my saving grace. Last time, I had to go into the office, so I kept some in my purse and by my bed. This time I’m working from home, so I just have a ginormous bottle next to my bed. So far during this pregnancy, I have only had heartburn at night, so I pop two Tums right before I lay down and then through the night depending on how uncomfortable I am. This stuff helps me so much that as soon as I run out, I am already planning my trip to the store to replenish my stash. I cannot recommend having some Tums on hand during your pregnancy.

Comfy Shoes

Finding a pair of shoes that don’t kill my feet or make them swell up like sausages has been a bit of a challenge. With my first pregnancy my feet grew a bit, so most of my shoes didn’t fit after the second trimester. I ended up wearing these knock-off Birkenstock sandals from Marshalls every single day all day to the point where the soles literally detached. This time my slip on Birks have not been doing me any favors and my Adidas tennis shoes have been my go-to. I cannot stress enough how much wearing comfortable shoes can change your whole demeanor during pregnancy especially at the end of a long day. I wear those tennis shoes a lot and often times look super dorky, but I just don’t care.

Okay, so that’s it. Just four things I use pretty much all through my pregnancies. Obviously there are days that I need a massage or a heating pad or some Tylenol, but these are my four tried and true must-haves that help my pregnancies from beginning to end. ๐Ÿ™‚