Bye-Bye Paci

Two week without paci complete. 

We have been reluctantly putting off taking away Grace's paci for months. I was really the reason why she still had her paci. We just had such a great system and routine. She never cried to fall asleep, she was a trooper when we traveled and I did not want to rock the boat. 

We waited until we knew we were not traveling for a while and a Friday night wide open. Michael and I put her down that first night, rented a movie and popped the popcorn and set in for a long night. To our surprise it was effortless. The next few nights were really easy minus the early mornings. Grace usually would find her paci in the early morning and sooth herself back to sleep. We have had some early mornings, (4am to be exact) but for the most part I am glad we finally pulled the plug. (yes pun intended!)

In the beginning Grace did not want to take the paci. We pretty much just held it in her mouth for a couple months to help her fall asleep. 

Then we found "the" paci that she liked. Then Grace not only took a paci, but LOVED her paci. She would have it in her mouth ALL the time if I would let her.

Then around 13 months we took the paci away and told her it had to stay in her crib until bedtime. This worked for a while and almost immediately after putting it in her mouth she would fall asleep. This worked beautifully for me! Until... she would sneak it out of her crib and hide it from me. Thats when I knew it had to go!

The Fence is Complete!

Our beautiful fence is finally complete! We (Michael) finished it Saturday night!

And this is how Grace feels about it... Just Kidding! 

We are overjoyed with how it turned out! I think it is very nice looking. Doesn't distract you or cut us off and matches well with the style we are going for. (rustic)

Addis has already spent a lot of hours in her new "room". 

We are so happy that today is the first day of spring and we are loving the weather that came along! 

(you can read more about our fence here and here)

It's The Little Things

For Valentines Day I bought Grace her very own chair.  Well when the chair came in the mail immediately the box the chair came in was the hit. This box is now a permanent fixture in my living room.

We have colored and decorated this box until it is really going to just collapse soon. 

As badly as I want this box to be in the trash (and I really do!) it has orchestrated hours and hours of family playtime with Grace. Which is something I would not trade for the world!

Dinner Menu

This week I tried to make this week's menu light and fairly easy. Also this means this hopefully the grocery list with be much lighter. This menu will allow you time to play dress up with your little one a lot longer. 

Crockpot General Tso's Chicken- This is a new recipe for us. I will let you know how it turns out.
Lettuce Wraps- This is also a new recipe. I usually just try to make one new recipe a week, but I have been wanting to try this recipe for a while.
Crockpot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili- This recipe is one of our favorites! We usually pair it with rice, wraps, chips, salsa, avocados and just make one big plate!

Let me know if you try any of these recipe! I love to hear from you!

Things I Still Buy/Use For Grace A Year and A Half Later...

If you are a new mom or soon to be, here is a list of items that I still use on my 18 month old. You will not go wrong putting these on your registry list and stocking up!

1. Pamper Swaddler Diapers- I love these diapers. They do not smell, like most other brands. We have veered off and tried other brands, but always come back to these.

2. Tripple Paste- I am convinced that this is the ONLY thing that will cure a bad diaper rash. I know when I was pregnant I thought my child would never have a diaper rash, but sometimes no matter what you do, it happens.

3. Baby Ganics Hand Soap- I originally started using this on my own hands (and of course everyone that came over). Now Grace is going through a stage where she loves washing her own hands, so we still use this soap!

4. Diaper Genie- I don't know what to say about this... diapers stink, and they only get WORSE!

5. Graco Pack n Play- I know this thing is heavy, but for the price this works awesome.

6. Fisher Price Monitor- You need a monitor and this one works great.

7. Arm and Hammer Diaper Sacks- When you visit friends and family you do not want to overload them with stink??? NO! This allows you to throw away the diaper in the trash and not burden everyone.

8. Soft Spoons- I used to feed Grace, but now she feeds herself and we still use the same spoons while she is learning.

9. Shopping Cart Cover- This is soooo worth it! Shopping carts are gross and this also works on highchairs. Germ Free.

10. Bob Jogging Stroller- LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, this stroller use it all the time! Helps you lose the baby weight with baby.

I hope this helps you out a little! What are you still using?

Welcome To Our Home (Part 1)

I thought I would let yall into our lives a little more, which means inviting you into our home. 

I know you have seen little bits and pieces from all of our home improvement, but now you can see the big picture. (you can read more about our home and improvements here and here)

First I should tell you I LOVE looking at houses! I could watch HGTV all day long. I am not much of a decorator, but I love seeing a house transform. I have had the most fun seeing our house come together and become a home. Even though we still have many more projects, this is what our home looks like today. ( ps Grace was napping while these pictures were being taken, so it doesn't always look like this)


This is your view as you walk in the front door, bedrooms to the right, living room to the left and dining room straight ahead.

This is where we live. We hangout in this room a lot of the time!  Eventually we would love to have built-in bookshelves on either side of the fireplace, but that is down the road. We also want hardwood floors, but honestly we have loved having carpet while Grace was learning to crawl and walk. So we are holding off on installing for a while.

This is Grace's little play corner. I routinely exchange out toys from her room to keep her occupied and not bored.

This is the other side of the living room looking back at the entrance.

This is where we eat all of our meals. Hopefully one day where the bay window is currently we want to install french doors to exit to the backyard. As of right now we do not have a back door leading to the yard, only to the garage. 

Here is where I do all the cooking. My kitchen. I love my kitchen. I actually like that you can not see it from the living room, because I can leave my dirty dishes in the sink and forget about them! 

Other side of the kitchen. 

The kitchen leads right into the mudroom/laundry room. We have not yet painted this room, but I am thinking of a light grey?

Opposite side of the room and my chalkboard wall, that I love. The door beside the chalkboard wall leads into my pantry.

Well thats it for now. Hope you enjoyed part 1 of the house tour!

Things I Use Everyday...

1. Neutrogena Moisturizer- I put this on my face no matter what I am doing.

2. Lysol Wipes- These are used on EVERYTHING. Tables, training potty, highchair, floors etc.

3. Brooks Running Shoes- Even if I am dressing up at some point in my day I put on my running shoes! I love my running shoes!

(I have to have running shoes to keep up with this sprinter!)

4. Baby Ganics Hand Soap- Instead of running to the bathroom after every diaper change, I just leave this on the changing table and have done so since Grace was born.

5. Fisher-Price Monitor- Really our house is small enough to not use a monitor, but it definitely gives me a peace of mind. We opted to go with a monitor without a video, just so we would not be obsessed. But I definitely can see how a video would be helpful! And we are currently borrowing these from Grace's cousin!

I love reading about people's routines, products they love, and use. So I thought I would write my own version of things I use everyday. What do you use everyday?

It's The Little Things

If you have spent anytime with Grace you would know that she LOVES being outside! I think she would seriously live outside. Her day is not complete without spending most of her time outside. It really does not even matter to her what she does outside, just as long as she is outside. But if I had say what her favorite thing to do, it would have to be SWINGING!

After hours of pushing her over and over again, I have to remind myself that she will only want me to push her so much longer... She is going to learn how to do it all by herself. 

Even though sometimes I make her daddy hide her swing, so I can have a break. (I seriously do this!)  I know I will miss these days!

Dinner Menu

I hope you are experiencing this beautiful weather! We played outside almost the entire day yesterday! (I think I even got a little sock tan line!) We swang on the swings, walked around the block in the wagon, rode bikes and watched Michael work on the fence a little bit more.

Well time has come around for another dinner menu. Please post in the comment section some of your favorite recipes! (maybe you will even see one of yours on the blog!) Also let me know if you try one of my recipes! I would love to know what you think!

Creamy Grilled Chicken Piccata- This is a new recipe for me, but I have made some other recipes from this blog and they all have turned out excellent!
Salmon- My entire family loves this recipe.
Carrots- recipe
BBQ- This is a longtime favorite recipe.
Coleslaw- recipe
Beef & Broccoli- recipe

Also since I will have leftover Sweetened Condensed Milk from the Salmon, I am going to make Blueberry Croissant Puffs for breakfast one day this week! Enjoy!

ps. Here are some previous menus if you need more ideas!

Our Weekend...

For months we have been talking about taking away Grace's paci. Well that is as far as it went... talking. We had already limited her to only having it in her crib and on long car rides. Well... honestly, I just loved our routine and did not want to throw a bump in the road. Grace is an EXCELLENT sleeper. She really tells us when she wants to go to bed and goes right to sleep. Takes great naps and never complains.

Friday we bit the bullet (after Michael and I renting a movie and making brownies- setting up for a LONG night) and made a big deal about throwing paci in the trashcan and waving goodbye. We read a little book about saying goodbye to paci. She understood and went right to bed without even a single cry. She woke up early, but for the most part we had a great night!

Saturday, we got up early with Grace and I headed out the door for an 8 mile run! I love this warm spring weather we have been having lately! The rest of the day was filled with more work on the fence and a Lowes run.

Well I know you have been anxiously awaiting to see what the fence looks like...

Well what do you think? We LOVE it! Michael was busy today building gates, while Grace and I played the day away.

There are a few more things to complete on the fence, but before too long we will have it completed. (by we you know I mean Michael)

I hope you had a wonderful weekend, even though we did lose an hour. 

Dinner Menu

I know it has been a long time since I have written and given you a weekly menu. I still have been writing a weekly menu for myself, just not sharing... Partly because I have been lazy, also because I did not know if anyone was benefitting? Please let me know if these are posts you want me to continue? Thank you.

Salmon- This is a new recipe and I am excited to see how it turns out!
Zucchini and onions- We have made this recipe before and absolute love it!
Pancakes- I usually use this recipe instead of buying a mix. It is really easy and tastes great!
Meatball Subs-We have made this recipe before and is excellent and SUPER easy!
Chicken Tetrazzini- This is a Pioneer Woman's recipe and you can never go wrong with her dishes!
Sausage Gravy- Recipe

Enjoy! I hope this will help you out and make your life a little easier and maybe help you get out of the recipe rut!

Currently Loving

Now I am going to warn you ahead of time that this is a very random list. These are all things that this week I am loving and wanting.

1. I found this recipe off of pinterest and LOVE it! Michael and I ate almost the entire pot full in one night. I made some rice and we used it was a dip and put it in a wrap with avocado and a little more cheese. Delicious!

2. Grace had grown out of all her tennis shoes and she was in desperate need of more! I headed to a few stores, but ended up getting these shoes from Khols. She loves her little running shoes. She feels like such a big girl.

3. We are borrowing this from some friends and Grace thinks it is a hit! It plays 6 different songs and has numerous things to turn, pull and push on this cube! Hours of laughter filled here!

4. This is not a new love, but maybe you could say a rekindled one. I use these wipes on everything! Especially since we have had some runny noses lately. I wipe just about everything down with them.

5. My new fence! I can't wait to share pictures with you!

Happy Tuesday! Hope you have a wonderful day!

Mommy and Grace Time

Grace and I got to spent a lot of time together this weekend! You see we had to stay out of daddy's way. He was busy working and building a fence for us! 

Saturday was filled with a Target run (and when I say "run" we really just wonder and I put things in the cart and then out and then lose and put them back in, because I always find too many things that we "need" at Target). We even grabbed lunch out to be away from the house until nap time. We came home to see our fence coming along and close to complete!

Sunday Grace and I had even more girl time (still leaving daddy at home) and celebrated a very happy 3 year old's birthday. The party was at a local gymnastic center. Grace did not want to leave the foam pit! She stayed in here what seemed like forever! (I need one in my living room- a huge play pen!) 

We left the party only to head to the park and play some more. Grace was in bed (after a long soapy bath) early! Actually so was her momma and dad-dad. 

I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

ps. What do you think of the new design!?!?

Time For A Makeover & Friends

What do you think? I am more than pleased! I LOVE my new blog design! It was in desperate need of a makeover and Carla over at Glam Blogs worked with me (which is not easy- I am pretty computer illiterate) and made it look EXACTLY how I wanted!

Thursday and Friday I was able to spend some time with one of my very good friends, Heidi and her two beautiful kids.  We celebrated a birthday, went on a walk, changed diapers, played outside, made play dough, changed diapers, broke up fights, talked, changed diapers (you get the point), went to bed at 8:30 and had a wonderful 2 days! 

Yes I know... this picture they are still, but I gave in and gave Grace her paci and we bribed them all with a movie so we could get lunch together.

We had a wonderful time and would not have changed it for anything and am looking forward to the next time together!

I hope you are a having a wonderful weekend so far. I can not wait to tell you what we have been working on this weekend!
Hi! I'm Katie. Wife to Michael. Mom to Grace, David Michael & Emma. Christ Follower. Runner. Stay at home mommy.
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