Leo - Month 20


Weight: 24lbs

Nicknames: Leeman, Lee-Lee, Wee-whoa
Clothes: 18 months clothes, and we have gotten away with a few 18-24 month shirts from Gap if I roll the sleeves once. Pants are now all 18-24, still a size 4 diaper although its probably our last box before we move to 5's. Still wearing size 5 shoes
Sleep:  You are a really great sleeper, pretty predictable in the fact that you take one 2/3hr nap and sleep from 7-7. I will say that it takes you almost an hour at night to fall asleep. You don't cry or whine, but we watch you stir and play before your eyes finally shut. You love your Hip Hip and can't sleep without him.

7:00am - Up and Bottle (we are slowly transitioning this away), you are getting about 5oz now and will continue to do so for a month (because Dad and I are total babies and don't want to give it up) and then we'll switch you to a sippy cup.
8:00am Breakfast- you looove waffles!
9-12am play
11:30am/12pmish- lunch
1:00 pm nap
3:15pm snack & playtime
6:00pm dinner with a cup of milk
6:30 pm bath
7:15 pm  bed

Health: You had a healthy month for the most part. A few days here and there of a runny nose but nothing that kept ya down!

Crying: You get frustrated and whine, but for the most part, you are pretty easy to soothe.

Feeding:  This month you loved cherries, you surprised me one dinner with eating a tonnn of chicken (which is the first time in months you've even tried it!), and I've resorted to smoothies to get extra fruit and veggies into you. You love pasta, avocados, yogurt, cherries, blueberries, peanut butter, egg-ys, crackers, cheese, and papa's pizzas (english muffin pizzas).

Likes:  You like to move. You like to be on the move, constantly. You love to "walk" and be "ousside", you love to point at everything we see and will repeat it until I acknowledge that I, too, say the "lawnmower, tree, dog, water, duck....etc, etc.. You love to be around people, you are not shy, you are a total lover, and you love to play and explore with new things. You've also really started to enjoy coloring and playing with stickers which has been fun.

Milestones: New words and this month you started to put a few sentences together. You'll say "Hi Roro", "Hi Coco", and a few days ago you said "Mama Shoes", when you found my shoes. You say "pwease", when prompted, which is darling, and even learned a few newer and more obscure body parts (eyebrows, shoulders, knees). You love to point out people's accessories too (earrings, watch, ring). You're observant and smart as a whip.

You love to sing the "Open Shut Them" song at dinner and sway your head and do all of the movements as we sing it to you.

Places You’ve Gone: We were home all month but we had quite a few out of town visitors! Big Tucker came to see our house and spend time with you from California, and we got to see the Pressentin family too who came in from LA as well for a sleep over!

Visitors: See above :)

Roscoe: Same as last month, but it's truly the sweetest thing ever....In the morning, after your bottle, Roscoe sits right above the chair that I feed you on in our living room. As soon as your down with the bottle, you start petting him sweetly, talking in this cute little voice saying "Roro", and you kiss him and cuddle him for like 5 or 10 minutes. It's one of my most favorite times of the day...it's absolutely precious. 
You two will also chase each other and you both go absolutley insane. You think Roscoe is just hysterical and when he barks you will tell him "no no".
 Where is the time going my sweet boy? It's truly freaking me out just how close we are to TWO. I cannot wrap my head around it! It is very true what they say about the day's being long but the year's being so, so, so short.


Popping In

I spent the whole (rainy and cold) weekend not feeling great. Thankfully my chest cold is starting to break, but as a result, I spent much of the weekend in bed laying low. 

The good news is that I was able to finish the Sophie Kinsella book and I was happy that after the first few chapters it turned into a really breezy, cute book. 

Image result

A perfect beach read if you're looking for one. 

Also, my best friend is begggging me to start watching Younger. I tried to watch a few episodes when it first came out a few years ago and couldn't get into it, but, possibly like the book, she swears it picks up. Have you watched? 

Related image

I feel like with summer TV being so lame, it might be a good time to get into it. 

Otherwise, things are pretty lame around here right now. I know this summer is going to shake things up and we're going to be begging for some of these quieter days, but I'm ready for all of the fun of summer (I think). Although, I truly cannot believe this weekend is Memorial Day! 

Time is a flyin.

Don't look back.:


Five on Friday

 Image result for smidge of this five on friday blog button

::: 1 :::

If you are in Chicago, or you come to visit, I would highly recommend you try and fit in a food tour. This past weekend, my two girlfriends and I went on one in Bucktown and it was honestly so much fun. We used the company Chicago Food Planet and had a great experience. Our tour was from 12-3pm, and during that time we stopped at 5 awesome restaurants in the area (Jay's Beef, Sultan Market, Stan's Donuts, Piece Pizza, and Hot Chocolate) and also walk through the neighborhoods and local parks to learn a little history about the houses and neighborhoods. It was a really fun way to spend the afternoon and we were damn near stuffed from it.  

::: 2  :::
 And while I'm at it....Another great night in chicago tip? Dinner at Adobo followed by a comedy show at Zanies.Couldn't have asked for a better night with two of my best friends. 

::: 3 ::: 

I mentioned yesterday that Leo got me an essential oil diffuser from Mother's Day. I have been wanting one for month's now, but I'm having a little issue with it. Our main living area is pretty big, and most of it is two stories. That's where I want the diffuser to hang out, but I feel like the room is too big, I can't even smell the oil unless I'm next to the little machine. Any tricks? I may just end up moving it to the kitchen but thought I'd check here first. 
::: 4 :::

We had our first beach day of the season this week and even though it was beautiful and fun....it for sure is not relaxing (or clean). Leo was not a fan of the sand or the water...so that was a curveball I wasn't expecting. He did like digging in the sand, if he was sitting on the blanket, but we're going to have to make a few more trips there so he can get used to it. I laughed at myself that I brought an US Weekly with. Rookie Mistake. 
::: 5 :::
No big plans this weekend and we are keeping it that way. It seems like we have had crazy weekend after crazy weekend so I'm hoping to spend a lot of time at home, some time planting (who am I??), and just spending time with Joel and Leo. 
Let It Be - Quote Print - Succulent Print - Succulent Wreath - Printable Quote - Botanical Print - Botanical Decor - DIGITAL FILE ★NO PHYSICAL ITEM WILL BE SENT. You will receive a high resolution 8x10 ready-to-print file. Print it using your home printer, or bring it to a local or online printing lab to do it for you. You will be referred to an instant download link shortly after your purchase. ★Do you want a PRINTED DESIGN that is SHIPPED to you? Visit this link: https://www.etsy.com/sho...:


Mother's Day Recap

I decided on my birthday last week to take Leo to Color Me Mine to do some Mother's Day crafts for Leo's Grandma's and Great Grandma.

What I learned about Color Me Mine with a one and a half year old, is that it's not something you want to do solo. Thankfully my cousin Gia came to help assist, and without her, we would have probably walked right out the door.

Thanks to Gia, I got to enjoy the entire process, and Leo had a lot of fun doing it. We lasted for about 40 minutes and he really liked playing with the paint and paint brushes, and didn't entirely hate getting his hands painted either.

We made coasters for my mom, a vase for Joel's mom, and a little trivet for my Grandma. They were all ready before Sunday and made for darling Mother's Day Gifts.

The Saturday before Mother's Day, I had spent the entire day (and night), downtown with two of my girlfriends. We've made it an annual tradition to try and get away around this time (last year was Mexico) and I always think a little time away makes you return so much more refreshed. 

We left the city really early Sunday morning, and when we got home, Joel had a bunch of gifts on the table along with a huge brunch ready to roll for me and my family.

For Mother's Day, Leo got me a helmet for our new bike and trailer and an oil diffuser and essential oils. 

Around 11:30 my family came over, we had mimosas and brunch (blueberry french toast overnight bake, an egg and sausage casserole, bagels and lox, fruit and donuts!), opened a few presents and just enjoyed each other's company.


I am so thankful to have my mom and my Kuka in my life, and even more thankful that Leo has them too. They've truly taught me how to be a mom and they're both role models to me every single day. 


I ended up sneaking away after brunch (which Joel not only cooked but cleaned every last thing....he's good.) to take a much needed nap right when Leo went down too. 

After nap we decided to break out the new bike trailer and hit the road for a little family bike ride.


It took Leo a little time to get used to the helmet, but once we started moving he was happy as clam. I have a feeling we will be riding all summer long.

Sunday night our friends from LA were in Chicago and were able to spend the night with us. I am so mad we didn't take one picture, but we had a blast having them, ordered pizza, let our kids play together, and after like one glass of wine, everyone went up to bed before 10pm. We're getting old.

It was a pretty packed day, but felt relaxing and indulgent all at the same time. Joel and Leo were good to me, and I am so, so, so thankful that I get to be a mom.


minor upgrade, major benefit

a few weeks ago...I showed you how our kitchen had progressed (here). We had the back splash installed, and just like with all house projects, it made the cabinet hardware just beg to get switched out.


A reader (thanks Rita!) actually suggested to check on Amazon for pulls, and wouldn't you know it, each pull was about 25% cheaper than almost the exact same one at Home Depot. 

I ordered these since they matched the screw length on our cabinets (3")

Franklin Brass P29521K-SI-B Soft Iron 3-Inch Lombard Kitchen or Furniture Cabinet Hardware Drawer Handle Pull, 10 pack

I was able to switch out all of the pulls in one afternoon, and while it doesn't seem like the biggest update in the world, it is SO much better than what we were working with. And for a $100 upgrade, it pulled our entire kitchen together. 


It also really made me consider the fact that all of our gold, "fancy" handles on our doors need to get switched up too. I think bronze, round knobs will really make a big difference, so that's a project I'd like to complete by the end of the year.

Image result for bronze door knobs

One thing at a time!


Five on Friday

 Image result for smidge of this five on friday blog button

::: 1 :::
I'm on a major book kick but wanted to share that the last one I read was a pretty big bust. I mentioned on snapchat (tshields622), but you can 100% skip this.

The Young Wives Club: A Novel
I've just started to read the below book, and I'm hoping it picks up. It's a little slow to start, but reads very similarly to a lot of Sophie Kinsella's other books so I'm going to try and get through it. 

Related image 

::: 2 :::

My sweet friend Ami had read that I totally butchered making my own wasabi soy dressing and was really missing my favorite type (that you can only get in California) and sent me a bottle as a surprise. Seriously the cutest little gesture, and of course I had to make a steak salad right away, and the dressing is even better than I remember! Thanks Ami for being such a sweet and thoughtful friend. 
::: 3 :::

Image result for short sleeved toddler puddle life jacket zipper
We are going to start swim lessons this summer, but Leo won't be anywhere close to a capable swimmer this summer, so I'm trying to figure out what the best options are for him. Do you have a favorite? My mom found me this one (but with short sleeves), and I like that it offers sun protection and seems pretty easy to put on, but wanted to see if I'm missing out on must-have's.

::: 4 ::: 
This was a dinner I "cooked" up last week, and it was so good and so easy, and I'm know this isn't novel, BUT.....I figured I'd share. Literally all you need are chicken drumsticks and this, from Trader Joes. 

Related image
I used about 3/4's of the bottle for two packages of drumsticks and cooked on low for about 6 hours. Served with an Asain salad mix and enjoy this 2 minute, delish dinner!

::: 5 :::
We have an insanely packed weekend. My best friend from LA, Shelby just got into town last weekend, we are celebrating my dad's 60th birthday tonight, heading downtown tomorrow for our annual girls "trip", and then on Sunday, hosting Mother's Day Brunch and our dear friends from LA are in town to spend the night with us on Sunday night. 

I know I will be paying for this weekend all of next week, so the chances that I have a recap up by Monday are very, very small, but I'm going to soak in all the fun and see you when I come up to breathe!  


Birthday Weekend Recap

Apparently I had such a good time celebrating my birthday, I really failed to take a lot of pictures.

On Saturday morning, Joel and I dropped Leo off at his grandparents and drove into the city to spend. We met up with my sister briefly when we parked near her apartment in Bucktown, dropped our bags off at the hotel we were staying at (The Robey), and then made our way straight to Anker for brunch.

Brunch was awesome. I had a few cups of coffee, Joel had a few beers, and we ordered the pimento cheese and pickles (my favorite), oatmeal pancakes, and french fries with a few awesome dipping sauces.

We took our time at brunch with felt like an indulgence on its own, and then took an uber into the loop so that I could do some shopping at Bloomingdales and Nordstrom (whom was serving Moscow Mules in the women's department!). 

I didn't have tons of luck shopping, but I'm kind of obsessed with what I did get.Image result for bloomingdales cotton nike leggings $45 $45 Image result for silver birkenstocks thong

I've already worn both all week, so it was absolutely money well spent.

When we got back to the Robey, we relaxed for a bit and then we met up with my sisters and cousins for a drink. The cool rooftop bar (the Up and Up) was closed for a birthday party, but Hannah surprised us with a table and bottle of champagne while the crew was setting up. We didn't mind and it was a really fun way to kick off the night.


After drinks, Joel and I had a fantastic dinner at Momotaro. 

Image result for momotaro in chicago

It's quite the spot, total scene, but the food was amazing. We did order a few too fancy of rolls, but overall, we thought it was awesome, fun, and a spot we really want to hit up again.

Sunday morning we slept in until 9:30 (!!!), thank you black out shades, and then decided to take a walk and get donuts and coffee at Stan's. 

We love Stan's...and we used to go to the original location in Westwood (back in LA) all the time, but this Stan's in Chicago is even better. They're coffee is amazing and they have way more crazy flavors to choose from. The buttermilk bar was our favorite - but I don't think you can go wrong with any.

Image result for stan's donuts in chicago

As we left to walk off the donuts, about 5 blocks into the walk Joel realized that I had been walking without my purse. I don't know what the heck I was thinking, but I had left it on one of the hooks under the community table. As I sprinted back to the shop, I called them and thankfully the guy had spotted it and had put it under the cash register. Total idiotic move that could've ruined the entire weekend, but thankful for a good ending! 

We met my family in Elmhurst for brunch with my cousins and then on Monday celebrated with pizza, good wine, and strawberry rhubarb pie at my parents house.

It was a perfect weekend....and I am so excited to test out my new birthday wheels with Leo!  


Must Have Toys for 18mth Toddlers

I had a friend text me the other day that her son, who is just a month younger than Leo, is happy as a clam outside, but gets bored when they are inside. 

Leo can totally relate, and honestly, if we could be outside 100% of the time, this sweet kid would be happy with a ball and space to roam 24/7.

But since that's not happening, I took stock in the toys that actually keep Leo's attention for more than a minute or two. The toys that I considered "Must Haves" are toys that Leo plays with day after day, toys that he can play with independently, learn from, and bonus points if they're not super ugly to look at. 

::: Fubbles Bubbles Machine, bought at Target for $10

We love this thing, only downside is that you need 3 batteries. Leo has learned how to turn it on and off himself, he can play with the bubbles for 20-30 minutes, and it's pretty spill proof. It does leak a little, but overall, I really enjoy not blowing the bubbles myself for 30 minutes. 
::: Little Tykes Water Table, Amazon $40
Our 2nd water table, I like this one better because the pieces stay where they are supposed to. Leo likes this table with water or without which is a nice plus! I've also found that Leo's favorite toys are one's that he can stand and play with, versus sitting on the ground. I have a feeling we will use this for years to come. 

 ::: Grocery Cart, TJ Maxx $10
 Leo loves his cart. He probably plays with this toy every single day and it's one of the toys that we keep in the living room. He loves pushing it around, placing toys inside and out, and racing it on the hardwood floors. 

::: Melissa and Doug Cleaning Set, amazon, gift
This is one of our newest toys and we both love it. It's so cute, it's the other toy that I keep in our living room. For the most part Leo sweeps the floors, but I've also been finding him dusting lately. My sister-in-law said that her 7 year old loves this toy too, so I think this is a nice toy that will grow with Leo.
::: Backpack, local toy store, gift
I had to include this backpack, because for whatever reason, Leo is obsessed. He will just run around the house with it on, but he must find it somewhat fun. I think this particular toy is probably a little child specific, but it makes for a great gift and it is possibly the cutest thing ever to see a toddler with a mini backpack on. Leo just started saying "backpack", and it pretty much melts me.
::: Shape Sorter, target 
In full disclosure, Leo isn't a master at playing with this toy by himself quite yet, but it's a great toy for learning, identifying shapes and developing fine motor skills. I also like that I can see him getting better at it each time we pull it out. This is a great gift for a one year old, and another gift that I can see him playing with for at least the next six months to a year.
::: Train Table, everywhere! 
The biggest investment, but by far our most used and loved "toy". Our table stands a little higher, which I like....my mom has one (I think hers is Kid Kraft) and it's a touch low (although it does have 2 drawers and ours doesn't)...but regardless...Leo loves his table. For now, he just has fun moving the trains around the table and up and down the simple track we have, but the older Leo gets, the more creative he can be. Plus, even if we're not playing with the table itself, we seem to have trains everywhere else. They make for the perfect small toy for dinners out and hes been playing with them independently in our living room a lot these last few weeks.

I'm always trying to stay on top of the next phase of toys to keep Leo entertained, so please pass any of your favorites/must have to us! I'm trying hard to have quality over quantity!


May Flowers

......we better get some after all these dang showers!!

With this being our first house, we're just cutting our teeth on how to take care of it. Thankfully my mom and Joel's dad are both really, really handy gardeners - so we're learning from the experts.

The first order of business was to chop down this eyesore of a bush.

Well, actually, the first, first order of business was to get the exterior door painted black. When we first moved in, and all through the winter (Since it was too cold to paint), I was working with a tough orangy-red cracked door.

Finally, April arrived and I was able to get the door painted. 

The tree was overgrown and dying, so Joel's dad finally chopped it down and it made such a difference.

My mom and I are going to add some smaller bushes and flowers in the coming week, but in the interim, my mom helped me get my planters filled.

And now that the tree is gone, you can actually see them! 

I've got a long way to go, but my mom assures me that I'll soon become addicted.


Now, here's hoping I can keep these plants alive!