Thursday, July 25, 2013

MC's First Beach Trip - Summer Vacation 2013

We took MC to Hilton Head Island, SC for her first trip to the beach! BD and I went to HHI two years ago for vacation and had a great time, so we knew it would be a good place for MC to experience the beach.

She loved the beach! We went down to the beach in the early mornings and again in the late afternoon each day. She played in the sand with some beach toys and splashed in the ocean waves as they came on shore.In the afternoons we could usually find big holes dug in the sand where other kids had played, and she loved playing in the holes - crawling out and sliding back down to the bottom.


We did some sightseeing to other parts of the island we didn't see last time we visited - saw the famous lighthouse at the Harbour Town marina, ate at the Salty Dog Cafe in South Beach, and toured the Shelter Cove area.

The condo complex had a pool so we also spent some time relaxing at the pool.

And a couple of rainy afternoons we just played inside the condo.

Towards the end of the week we dressed up for dinner and took some family pictures. We actually ended up with take-out at the condo instead of going out for dinner (wait time at the restaurant way too long for MC), but we did get some good pictures!

We had a fantastic vacation, and MC was a great traveler, so we're already thinking ahead to next year's trip!

On the drive home we stopped and had a roadside picnic for early lunch so everyone (Kip included) could take a break and stretch their legs.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Thirteen Months Old!

A new format for the monthly posts for her second year!

(click on image for bigger version)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Our Favorite Baby Things: 10-12 Months

Check out our other lists for younger babies:
The two words that describe MC's habits during the last three months of her first year are food and toys.

I've been using this book to make yummy, healthy food for MC. She has loved everything I've made from this book. I've made apple/lentil/sweet potato salad, graham cracker cookies, sweet potato pancakes - lots of fun, different ideas. There is also a website associated with the book.

MC is not quite walking on her own yet, but that does not mean she doesn't want to be upright and on her feet all the time! This push toy gives her some independence to cruise around the house. She can push this on both the hard floors and the carpets with no problem.

MC got this swing for her first birthday. BD hung in it the back yard, and we use it almost every day! It is nice to have somewhere outside we can play instead of always having to play inside the house.

We use a pool floatie for MC when we take her to the pool. That is not our exact float, but ours is basically the same. I really like that it has a canopy to block the sun. It kind of depends on her mood as to how much she enjoys sitting in it - some days she is perfectly happy sitting in it and watching everyone, but some days all she wants to do is play in the shallow end. Luckily, our float folds down into a carry case, so it is super easy to bring with us to the pool and blow up quickly if she decides to sit in it.

Here are a few other seasonal items, not necessarily age related, that we're using lately:

MC is fair-skinned and doesn't have a lot of hair, so I always have this sun hat on her head if we are outside at all. I even use this just for trips across the parking lot from the car into a store. It fits easily into one of the pockets on the diaper bag, so I always have it handy. Hers is this (Carolina!) blue color, but of course you know I had a pink monogram put on it! :)

We've tried several different brands of sunscreen for MC this summer. We are using only non-nano mineral (non-chemical) sunscreens for MC. I'll let you do your own research about sunscreens (if you're interested, check out the EWG sunscreen guide or the Safe Mama guide), but we chose mineral sunscreens because they do not penetrate the skin and are stable in sunlight, among other reasons. There are several good brands and most of the "new" ones, don't turn your skin that weird white color. California Baby is one of the brands that we have used and liked. We also like Badger and The Honest Company sunscreens.

In keeping with the sun protection theme, all of MC's swimsuits are similar in style to this suit. We go to the pool several times a week, so we have several suits for her that are the bottom piece with a short-sleeved or 3/4-sleeved rash guard top. I was actually planning for her to wear a regular one-piece style suit for her until I spoke to my dermatologist about it. I was asking her opinion on sunscreens for MC, and she recommended the non-chemical sunscreens but also pointed out that for young children, being covered up with UPF clothing is just as important.

Monday, July 8, 2013


We gave MC a swing for her first birthday, and BD found the perfect shady spot to hang it in the back yard.

We've spent a lot of time out there over the last few weeks; she loves to swing!

She has been on the swings at the playground several times, but it is so convenient to have one in our yard.

Her favorite times to swing are right before afternoon nap and/or before bedtime - she gets nice and relaxed before it's time to sleep.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


Here are some recent pictures of our girl; most of these are from late May/early June.

Her first taste of sweet watermelon - a summer staple! She was a little unsure of the texture but loved sucking out the juice!

There is a reason why we call him "Jaws"...can't you just hear that music playing in the background?!

Playing peek-a-boo behind the curtains in her bedroom.

We ordered a little toddler table and chairs set for her playroom. She was helping BD put it together outside; they were clapping in celebration of a finished chair.

More watermelon, she got used to the texture after a few tries.

This is like a rite of passage from babyhood into toddlerhood...playing in the tupperware cabinet.

Entertaining herself while Mama vacuums (pulling all the doggie poop bags off the roll)...

We're serious about sun protection around here!

Another rite of passage (and check out that tongue sticking out!)...

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

MC's First Birthday Party

We had MC's first birthday party on the Saturday following her actual birthday. Months before the big day we reserved a picnic shelter at the municipal park near our house and crossed our fingers for good weather on the day of the party. We weren't disappointed - mid-80s, sunny, and low humidity...the weather was perfect!

I enjoy planning and hosting parties, so I really had fun putting this little party together for her. We kept it pretty low-key since I wanted BD and myself to be able to relax during the party and celebrate our first year of parenthood.

I found a pink and yellow bubble suit for her, which inspired the Lemonade theme. I knew I wanted to do a summery theme for the party since it was in mid-June, and drinking lemonade out of mason jars seems to be the ultimate Southern summer activity. Plus pink, yellow, and lime green are fun, summery, girly colors!

I worked with a designer on Etsy for the invitations, favor tags, and cupcake toppers.

party invitations

pink, yellow, and lime green jelly beans in 4oz mason jars for party favors

cupcake toppers

Big, bright polka dot balloons in mason jars continued our color scheme on the tables.

And of course there was lemonade and mason jars for drinking!

The party was right around lunch time, so we had some of our favorite Mexican food catered in for lunch.

BD and MC's grandparents got everything set up before the party. And then it was time to have some fun with our friends and family and celebrate MC being one year old!

Happy Birthday, MC! We weren't sure how she would do with everyone singing and staring at her, but she was not bothered - then she dug in to her cupcake!

We've had such a fun year with this little lady and her party was the perfect way to commemorate it! Now we can't wait to see what the upcoming year has in store for our little family!