July 23rd has been set aside this year as a day to Clear the Shelters. In conjunction with NBC, animal shelters across the country will come together for a nationwide pet adoption initiative that aims to connect animals in need with loving new families. More than 19,000 pets were adopted from 400 shelters during last […]
It’s been a couple of months since our last post in the Moving Inspiration series. And while this may in part be due to the fact that, well, we’re sort of running out of rooms to feature, it’s also simply a result of my own personal frustration with the house hunting process. Our situation is unique because of Robbie’s and my jobs (he is gone half the year, and I work from home with two very young children). In other words, we don’t have the time to devote to a fixer upper, as amazing as that would be for my design-loving, DIY-brained self. But we also live in an area where newer homes that suit our needs in terms of size and space are out of our price range for the most part. While we could potentially move to an entirely different place, this is an area that we love, and after spending many many years living all over the country, it is a place I know I really want to stay to raise our children. Top that with the fact that we took several months off over the winter when I was having pregnancy related issues and then when we had a newborn, and it just feels like there’s been a lot of obstacles since we started this process almost a year ago. We’ve reached a point where we are still actively looking everyday, but have stopped stressing about finding something immediately. We do need to move sooner than later, especially as Emmett approaches an age where he’ll be walking (our current place just isn’t big enough for two little ones on the move). But we’ve had to sort of trust in the universe that something will eventually come along. Admittedly, this may not be the most realistic way to approach things, but it’s just where we are right now, and we’re trying to stay positive about it. (Because in the end, no matter what happens, there are way, way bigger things to worry about in the current state of the world than finding the right house to buy.)
All of this said, I feel like it’s important for me to stay inspired during this process, even if things aren’t going how we wish they were. So for today’s installment, rather than focusing on specific room designs I love as in the past (see here: dining rooms, kitchens, bathrooms, home offices/studios, bedrooms, living rooms, and kids’ rooms), I’m just sharing a good ol’ hodgepodge (pretty sure that is the first time I’ve ever used that word, but it fits) of spaces I’ve come across recently that I love and that keep me motivated to plan decorating our future home, when it finally transpires. I think you guys know my style pretty well by this point, so there’s no real need to break these spaces down. I love them all, for different reasons, but mainly because they just feel very “us.” I’m going to keep looking at them, and the other spaces featured in this series so far, and manifest the best house ever just magically appearing for us. Seems like a legit way to go about it, right?
I’ll keep you posted…
I have vague but endearing childhood memories of carrying my dolls and stuffed animals around in a backpack with their heads peeking out, in an effort to emulate my parents, who consistently wore my little sister in a 1980s version of a baby carrier. They wore me as a baby as well. We experienced daily life this way – we ran errands, took walks, went to the park, did chores, and visited with friends. When I got pregnant with Essley a few years ago, I couldn’t wait to wear her. And while some things worked and some didn’t with her, and more recently with Emmett as well, babywearing has ultimately been an incredible bonding experience. It has also been a pretty freaking fantastic way to actually be able to get things done, if we’re being real here. Today I’m teaming up once again with my friends at Ergobaby to share our personal experience with wearing our babes – from the types of things we do and places we go while babywearing to the benefits we’ve experienced to the details of our favorite carrier.
For me, wearing my babies felt like second nature mainly because I just didn’t want to put them down – but how I wore them didn’t go exactly as planned. I had stocked up on wraps, slings, and carriers galore, thanks to gracious friends who gifted us and/or handed them down. I envisioned wearing Essley in every way possible, parading her down the street all perfectly boho in babywearing devices that accessorized my outfits. In the end, it was, of course, ultimately up to her, not me – and girlfriend just wasn’t a fan of wraps or slings. She did, however, love the Ergobaby Original Baby Carrier we had, first with the Infant Insert, and then alone as she grew. (And even as a very independent two and a half year old who likes to walk on her own when we’re out and about, we still wear Essley on occasion.) When Emmett came along, I knew that he could potentially be just as picky as his sister, but he ended up liking both wraps and the Ergobaby Carrier. When he was a couple of months old and we got the Ergobaby ADAPT, he preferred that most of the time (and it didn’t need an infant insert; more on that later in the post). So while the babywearing experience I anticipated when pregnant for the first time has been different in reality, it’s still been wonderful, because both kids have loved it – and we have as well.
I mentioned above some of the places my parents wore my sister and me as babes and some of the things we did – and to be able to do so many of the same things with my own kids has been so, so great. Just as my family did when I was little, we take a lot of walks. And while the stroller is good for that as well, there is just something about being able to hold Emmett close while we’re outside exploring together that both Robbie and I love. The four of us spend a lot of time at the park too (another place that brings back memories of my own childhood). When Robbie has breaks from the band’s tour and I’m working full days, the park is their favorite hang. The three of them can spend hours there, with him wearing Emmett while Essley plays (or more accurately, releases some of her intensely wild toddler energy). I also have fond recollections of shopping with my own mama while she wore my baby sister, and this is something I love doing with my little ones as well – something I honestly didn’t think I’d ever be able to do anymore once I had two kids. It’s absolutely blissful to be able to experience so many of the same places and activities while babywearing that my parents did. I’m truly grateful for that. I’m also grateful (like, eternally grateful) that wearing my babes – especially now that I also have a toddler with whom to contend on the daily – allows me to get stuff done. I can clean. I can garden. I can run errands. I can even work. My arms are free to be productive, but I’m also holding my baby close. And that, as my mom has always said about being able to do the same with us as babies, is a gift.
In addition to the convenience factor (being able to easily go places and get things accomplished as a family when babywearing is pretty fantastic, after all), there are countless other benefits. Especially during the newborn months, keeping your baby close through practices like babywearing strengthens the bond between parents and babe. This can even continue into toddlerhood! Babywearing also allows for easy breastfeeding almost anywhere (I love, love, love nursing Emmett while he’s in his carrier), and can increase milk production. Infants who are carried tend to cry less because their innate needs are being met. Babywearing decreases the risk of both plagiocephaly (“flat head syndrome”) and SIDS. It also helps to establish balance, and aids in neural development and respiratory and gastrointestinal health. Pretty great right? And aside from all of the studies that show how beneficial babywearing is, it’s just a really enjoyable thing to experience – both for the baby and the parent. To me, that is the greatest benefit of all.
No matter what (or how many, if you’re anything like I was with Essley) babywearing accessories you try out for your individual little ones, you will likely end up with a favorite. I told you earlier about how when Emmett was just a couple of months old, we got an Ergobaby ADAPT. Within a matter of days, this became our go-to carrier. The ADAPT is Ergobaby’s first insert-less baby carrier to carry your baby in an ergonomic spread-squat, “M-shape” position – from birth all the way to toddler. And this thing is so, so easy to use you guys. Only a few small adjustments need to be made to adapt it to your growing little one, and it allows for three (yes, three!) positions – front inward, back, and hip carry. (We carry Emmett in the front inward position and Essley in the back positions – and now that Emmett is six months old we can’t wait to start carrying him in the hip carry position as well.) The Ergobaby ADAPT also has new comfort features for parents, including crossable shoulder straps and a lumbar support waistbelt. It is truly the gold standard for babywearing (and toddler wearing!) in my opinion. We use it every single day, and we don’t leave home without it. It’s also one of the top products I’ve been consistently recommending to all of my pregnant friends and friends with babies.
Thank you for letting me tell you guys all about our babywearing experience (and allowing me to go on and on about all of the details, from how/where we babywear to what’s worked and hasn’t to our personal favorite carrier!). Just like with the swaddling and breastfeeding journeys I’ve shared here over the past few months, the babywearing adventure is one of those things that I most cherish as parent, because it’s something I profoundly enjoy that won’t last forever.
I would absolutely love to hear about your babywearing experiences as well! What is your favorite place to wear your little one? What is your favorite babywearing product? Who else has an Ergobaby ADAPT?
This post is in partnership with Ergobaby. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.
Could your pet be our PawZaar Paw of the Day? We have been having so much fun seeing everyone’s photos and publishing one every weekday on PawZaar! For entries published June 15-July 14, our…
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Steller sea lions on a buoy just off from the Point Retreat Lighthouse. This body of water is called the “Lynn Canal,” which is actually fjord. It was named by George Vancouver, and it was supposed to be called “Lynn Channel,” but transcription error led to it being called a canal. But glaciers made it, not canal diggers.
I can totally see my dogs doing this. Happy weekend! Until next time, Good day, and good dog!
I’ve teamed up with Clorox to bring you some pet health and safety tips for the summer. Over this week and the next I’ll be sharing some info on Facebook and Instagram about household germs and infectious disease prevention. Bottom line for me is, keep it simple!
This post is sponsored by Clorox.
“Simplify the problem of life, distinguish the necessary and the real.” – Henry David Thoreau, 1848
We spend a lot of time in our lives looking for the next biggest thing that’s going to make our lives easier. What’s more efficient? Safer? Better? In doing so, we ironically end up making life ever more cluttered and complicated, piling up more things and creating increasingly complicated rituals that are anything but easy.
I work every day to help make animals healthier, but a big part of doing that means giving people recommendations they’ll actually follow through on because they are easy and effective.
I can give you a textbook on preventing the onset and spread of diseases, but do you really want that? You lead a busy life. It’s hard to follow a 15 page cleaning handbook when you have dogs, kids, and soccer practices to deal with. Let’s simplify things:
- Keep your pet safe through routine veterinary care and vaccination.
- Keep your environment safe with regular cleaning and disinfecting.
Dogs are messy. They get into messes and spread messes and sometimes that includes bacteria and viruses. Gross. The good news is, you don’t need a closet full of specialized Doggie Cleaning Solutions and Fido Wipes to keep the bugs at bay. All you need is ten minutes of your time and an item you probably already have in your house (just like the one in the photo, which was in my laundry room long before I started this campaign!)
There’s a reason animal shelters and humane societies across the country list bleach as one of their top wishlist items: It works, on everything from nasty bacteria like Salmonella and E.coli to the dreaded viral disease canine parvo. It’s inexpensive. It’s easy:
10 Minutes To a Safer Home
Did you know that a study by NSF International showed pet bowls and toys were in the top ten most germy items in the house– worse than toilet bowls and cutting boards? If you have pets, you can use Clorox® Regular-Bleach1 at home to sanitize their crates, pet bowls and toys.
- Disinfect hard non-porous surfaces and accessories with a solution of 1/2 cup product in 1 gallon of water. For pre-wash surfaces, soak or wipe with bleach solution. Allow solution to contact surface for at least 10 minutes. Rinse well and air dry.
- To sanitize pet food containers, wash bowls with detergent and rinse. Fill bowls with a solution of 2 tsp of Clorox®Regular Bleach1 per gallon of water. Let stand 2 minutes, drain and air dry.
For more pet tips, check out my 5 Steps to Keep Your Furry Family Safe From Germs.
 Clorox Master Label
If you live on a boat in the port of Menton, then that is where you get groomed …
A grayling. Near Denali National Park. At a place called Fishing creek, which was aptly named.
It wasn’t a monster by any stretch of the imagination, but I managed to catch five (all catch-and-release).
But I am much more confident with a fly rod than I was before.
I also got this photo of a northern rainbow.
So it was one of my better outings on this trip.