Scottsdale Trip

Oh, what a week! So after all three of us getting sick the week of Thanksgiving, I decided to take Leo to the doctor on the Monday before we left for Scottsdale. 

My mom landed in LA, we picked her up and had a quick lunch before the three of us went off to the doctor just to make sure we were in the clear to travel - which we were. So that night, we ordered sushi, loaded up the car, and got ready for our road trip to Scottsdale. 

At 5am, on my mom's birthday no less, her, Leo, and I, took off! We only had to stop once (in Indio), and Leo did fantastically. A 6.5hr car ride for a toddler should not be fun - but it actually was! He's getting an extra Christmas present for being such a gem! 

We rented a house in Desert Mountain, north of Scottsdale, so when we got there on Tuesday, we spent most of the day "moving in". Traveling with a toddler changes the name of the game when it comes to "vacationing", but being in a house vs. a hotel is SO much better. 

We met friends for happy hour to celebrate my mom's birthday and then got back to the house, made a frozen pizza, and went to bed on the early side. 

When I woke up on Wednesday morning - I was still sick, and had been for two full weeks, so I decided to go to an urgent care to get an antibiotic. I knew I had a sinus infection and was going to need something, so that was how I spent most of my day! 


Wednesday night was the rehearsal dinner, and since I was under the weather, and Leo wouldn't have lasted long, him and I decided to sit it out. We did meet up with the groom's parents for happy hour after my dad's flight landed, and got to capture some beautiful pictures of the sunset. 

Thursday was great - Leo and I were both finally feeling better - so while my dad was golfing, my mom and I took Leo to the park, and then into Scottsdale for some shopping and lunch! 


When we got back up to Desert Mountain, we decided to just go for it and take Leo to a really nice dinner at a steak house in the gates. I was hesitant to take Leo - he likes to move - and isn't quiet, but he proved me wrong. He was an absolute delight and we had the best dinner ever. 

The martini's (and view) didn't hurt either! 


That night, my sister - Aunt Birdie - landed in Scottsdale. We hung out together and she couldn't wait to get her hands on Leo the next morning. 


Friday was wedding day and Joel was supposed to get in Friday early afternoon, but his flight was delayed almost four hours so it threw our day off a little bit. I ended up staying back and missing the wedding ceremony so that I could wait for the babysitter - but once she got there, I ubered to meet my family in time to greet the stunning bride and groom.

Joel met us at the ceremony, right before dinner was served and it was so good to see him. 

Of course, at this point, most of my pictures go majorly downhill. As the amount of champagne I drank increased, the picture quality decreased.....

And the sign of a good wedding means the next day hurts and HURT it did. We all bummed around all day, before we joined all of the wedding guests for a country farewell party that I didn't snap one picture of! 

Since we had a sitter for Leo that night, my parents, sister, Joel and I decided to take advantage and go get one more drink at the steak house that we went to on Thursday. I got to indulge in one final French martini and we capped off a really fantastic wedding weekend! 

Joel and I left the next morning at 4:30 am and were back in LA before lunch. Leo did fantastic on the ride home and we only had to stop once for 5 minutes to fill up our gas tank! 

It was a great trip and now it's time to recoup before the holiday crazy begins again! 


Leo - Month 14

Weight: 20+lbs?

Nicknames: Leeman, Lee-Lee, Forest Boy, Weeward, Wee-whoa
Clothes: Somehow you are fitting into 24mth pjs! Everything else is same from last month.
Sleep:  We have both gotten a lot more used to your one nap a day, and it actually isn't so bad. It took us both a while to not feel like something was way off, but we got to the other side and we are having a lot of fun with our long mornings. 

up at 6:30...with an 8oz bottle
8:00am breakfast
9-12am play - very necessary to get out of the house during this time
11:30am/12pmish- lunch
12:30/1:00 pm nap
3:30pm snack & playtime
6:00pm dinner
6:30 pm bath
7:00 pm 8oz bottle and bed

Health: We had your first brutal cold. In fact, you are still fighting it off a bit, but it has broken your momma's heart. Plus, me and dad have been sick with you too, so it's been a very long week. You threw up, had a fever for 3 days (over Thanksgiving!), goopy eyes, runny nose, and now you are coughing. We called your doctor (well, mom has called a few times.....) and she said to just keep doing what we are doing because apparently a nasty bug is making its rounds. Steam showers, a tilted crib, lots of pedialyte bottles, and as much snuggles as you'll take! Somehow, you've still been pretty happy and enjoyable!
Crying: Now that you are a walking/running pro, you seem overall happier....although, now, frustration is a real thing. If you are playing with a push car and it doesn't do what you want, you will cry out in frustration, for example. Whining if you don't get what you want is new to us too. You will cry briefly when you fall on your bottom, but recover quickly. Overall, you are a happy little guy. 
Feeding:  Pickier and smarter.....for a long time I could get any kind of veggie in you, but now....not so much. A lot of times, you will put the food in your mouth, and then if you don't like it, just spit it out. It's not mommy's favorite game. Another game mommy doesn't love? Throwing food off your high chair.

Likes:  You love a lot of things! You love people, new toys, new games, learning, exploring, FaceTime, and bathtime! 
Dislikes: When things don't go/do what you want them too, falling/tripping, getting frustrated, most vegetables.
Milestones:  Now that we have crossed the walking and running threshold, we are focusing a lot on your verbal and cognitive milestones. You are talking up a storm, and new words come out of your mouth daily. Today's new word: bubble (and, it was after observing mommy's large glass of champagne!). Recent new words include; wiggle, Peppa, banana, birdie,  "hot coffee", "wa-wa", and "ni-ni".

Some of your newest tricks include lots of animal sounds, your favorite being the horse and the fish, pointing at our body parts, and kinddddd of blowing kisses.

You love to give daddy his shoes to put on, put your mega blocks together, kick a soccer ball, and fetch a ball to Roscoe.
Places You’ve Gone: You got to go to Disneyland this month!  Not only that, you got to go with all of the Shields family! You love to watch Mickey Mouse Club House and you really seemed to love being at Disney. Mom loved that we got to go during the Christmas season because the music and decorations were her favorite part. We rode "Its a Small World" which you LOVED and played like a wildman in Toon Town and loved exploring Goofy's house with your dad who patiently played in there with you for an hour.

It was mom and dad's first time too! 

Visitors: Your Mimi and Grandpa and all of your Iowa cousins were in town for Thanksgiving! We had such a blast with them.

Roscoe: It's taking Roscoe a little bit of time to warm up to the fact that you are now a running and walking tiny human that charges him 40 times a day. He is doing really well with you, and we are trying to teach you how to be gentle and play with dogs nicely. You love to fetch with Roscoe and think he is hilarious when he runs circles in our living room.


Thanksgiving Recap

Wednesday morning we were up bright and early to head to San Diego to celebrate the holiday with Joel's entire family. His oldest brother and their three kids flew into town with my in-laws, so after a few days in Disney, the plan was to celebrate Thanksgiving together and hang out in SD.

Leo is actually a really good car rider - but my mom bought him this little tray for our road trip to Arizona this week - and it turned out to be really handy for him to have breakfast on. It's not a necessity, but it proved to be pretty fun for him to play with too. Our JJ.Cole ipad holder, is however, a necessity.

I also just bought this since we are clocking so many hours in the car recently - and I'll let you know what I think. I can't stand a messy car, so I'm hoping this helps.

Back Seat Organizer - With Tablet Holder - Premium Multipurpose Travel Accessory for Your Vehicle - Toy Organizer, Kick Mat and Entertainment Unit - By Mio Child

When we got to San Diego, we pretty much got right to work prepping for Turkey day!

It is so fun watching all of the cousins play together. Leo is (currently, and not for long) the youngest of the crew, and he just adores watching the big kids. 

I had been sick all week prior to Wednesday, and Leo had been punky, but by Wednesday night, a cold hit him full speed and at dinner that night. We put him in his pack and play before 6pm and crossed our fingers he would be ok for the next day. 

Since he was sick - and I was still down too - Leo and I stayed home from our annual Turkey Trot. It's the first time I've missed it in more than 10 years, but Joel dominated and took home the 12th place, so I was glad he still went out there and ran for the fam. 

Leo seemed good on Motrin, so we decided to stay and enjoy the day with the family. The boys took the kids to the park and us girls got busy on lots of appetizers and mimosas. 


Dinner pulled together despite the chaos all around us that day - and the Shields fam had a wonderful and delicious Thanksgiving.

I feel incredibly lucky to love my entire in-law family as much as I do. We all have so much fun together and actually enjoy spending as much time together as we can. It's pretty rare to get as lucky as we did - and I'm so thankful for them. 

Unfortunately, that night was not fun for us! Leo was up the entire night and we decided to drive back home super early Friday morning. It burned to cut our fun early, but we needed the weekend at home to recoup and get back to feeling good.

We're on the mend.....just in time for our next adventure to Scottsdale for a family friends wedding!


Thanksgiving Break

It's been crazy around here.

Stomach bugs (and like 90 loads of laundry), trips to Disney (in the pouring rain), a cone-wearing dog (that barks through the night), in laws in town (with lots of different schedules to manage), more balls in the air than I can even count (more to come on that later), and so......as I try to make it through this week thankful, present and happy, I thought I better take blogging off my list of to-do's.

Hope to see you back here in a week or two (because we leave for Arizona a week from today!), feeling rested (ha!), sober (ha! ha!), and not 5 pounds heavier (ha! ha! ha!)

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!



Five on Friday

::: 1 :::
Clearly the city of Beverly Hills agrees with me - because we are decking our halls this weekend too! We are out of town the next two weeks, and that means so much fewer days to enjoy the beauty that is a lit Christmas tree - so up early it goes!!!!

Christmas leggings and hot cocoa:
::: 2 ::: 

Image result for disneyland at christmas
Also, pretty special this weekend - we are taking Leo to Disneyland! All of his cousins are coming together for Thanksgiving (most of them are staying a few extra days in Disney), but we are joining them for one fun filled day on Sunday! 
Image result for disneyland at christmas
Joel and I are not really Disney people, and I'm nervous that its going to be absolute madness with the holiday - but to see it all dressed up for Christmas, and through all of my nieces and nephews (and son's) eyes, is going to be pretty special, so I'm willing to be converted!

::: 3 ::: 
I am SO off my running game but this week I tried to get a few runs in with Leo. I'm really hoping running with a stroller will make running without it feel like a breeze because I am struggggggling with it! 

::: 4 ::: 
hand-applied beveled mirrors in our Sophie collection make an entryway graceful & grand. Click to shop Sophie. Photo: @salesbarista:
Thank you for all of the love on our family photos. I'm SO overdue for framing all of my favorite photos. I have so many pictures and just no idea how to display all of them .... and then when and how often to switch them out. I try to get ambitious and stick them into shutterfly books when I get free time, but that hasn't happened since Leo was born, so the pictures are piling up. Plus, I don't want my entire house covered in family photos, so I've got to find the right balance.

::: 5 :::
And don't forget to enter to win $300 to Amazon by entering the Home of Malone's giveaway here!

Must be Friday.:


Family Photos

I was especially excited to take family pictures this year because we got to take them in the beautiful fall season while we were in Chicago. The photographer, Dory Touhey, that did our wedding was able to take these pictures for us and they turned out so beautiful. 

We saved one of my favorites for our Christmas card, and a few other favorites for Christmas gifts, but  take a peek at some of my other favorites - I'm just obsessed.