Posts Tagged ‘things I love’

Oak Leaf Dairy Farm Visit – Baby Goat Cuddle Therapy Should Be A Thing

Saturday, March 28th, 2015

A few weeks ago a friend posted a photo on Facebook of her daughter surrounded by baby goats. I clicked the picture, which was geo-tagged, which led to a place name, which I then typed into Facebook and their page popped up. (Technology, man!) It turns out the place with the baby goats is called Oak Leaf Dairy and it’s only 20 minutes from my house. So after ballet class on Saturday I forced my family into their coats and put the directions into my phone and said “WE’RE GOING TO SEE GOATS EVERYONE IN THE CAR.”

I have about a 20% success rate with Family Fun Days. 80% of the time I am slightly-to-very disappointed because the Family Fun I had pictured never materialises. The kids are hungry, the weather is bad, my husband doesn’t think “wandering” or “browsing” count as fun activities at all. The more kids we add the more often I am stressed instead of relaxed and the picture perfect day trips I image for our family ends with everyone just needing a nap and a break from each other. It’s something I struggle with a lot – I WANT to be a family that loves to do lots of things together but most of the time we do better just watching a movie. That’s not much of a photo-worthy occasion.

BUT. Sometimes. Sometimes everyone remembers that they actually like each other and we have an awesome time.

The goats were an awesome time. Oak Leaf Dairy gets an A+ for Family Fun.

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Since it was snowing/raining we didn’t get to walk around the farm for the full tour, but we spent more than an hour in the baby goat shed just cuddling and petting baby goats. You can hold the goats. You HAVE to hold the goats, because they will literally leap into your lap. They also nibble your clothes and hair and phone and shoes but they have baby goat teeth and it doesn’t hurt. There were tiny babies literally born THAT morning in a separate quiet pen but the children could climb in and out of the other stalls (if they WANTED to be covered in goats) or hang out in the main room if they wanted a little more space. There were a few other people there and they were all as overwhelmed with the adorableness as we were – one of them FaceTimed her sister to show her how much fun the kids were having playing with the goats. Even my husband, who rolls his eyes at everything, loved the baby goats. BABY GOATS ARE THE BEST.

I would like to recommend baby goat therapy be added to Ways To Avoid Hating Everything.

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After we got in our baby goat time – even Lincoln liked petting the baby goats – we stopped at the cheese room to try out some samples: aged cheddar, cheddar curds, 4 kinds of chevre, feta, and caramel sauce. They also sell soap, but we couldn’t eat that so we didn’t buy any. We DID buy an obscene amount of everything else and then stopped for bread and ice cream on the way home so we would have cheese and caramel mouth-delivery devices.

It was an excellent Family Fun Day and we are going back as soon as possible.

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Super Food, Super Delicious!

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

My only food-related New Year’s resolution is “Eat less food from a drive-thru”. I’ve made drastic diet resolutions in the past and – not shocking – I’ve always failed. Always. If I’m not just throwing the whole thing out the window I’m busy trying to get around it somehow. (Well this ice cream is totally local and organic, which means it’s ok. It’s not like I’m eating horrible procesed candy from a bag…)

So “fewer drive-thrus” is a good goal. If I have to at least get out of the car and walk in to get my take-out at least it’s more likely to have a vegetable in it. I’m also menu planning again – maybe I’ll even get a What’s For Dinner post up! – and keeping the fruit bowl full. But when it’s lunch time and I’m standing in my kitchen and I realize I haven’t eaten anything that day and am suddenly STARVING, even a no-drive-thru rule doesn’t stop me from eating a pint of ice cream instead of real food. There has to be something easy and delicious right there.

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How Does Your AeroGarden Grow?

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Thank you to Scotts and AeroGarden for sponsoring this post and giveaway!!

I got an email from my friends at MiracleGro asking if I might be interested in an AeroGarden for review. I ignored it.

Want to know what happened to my last houseplants? Dead.

Wondering how long my cute indoor herb planter lasted? Not even long enough to sprout.

Ask me how many tomatoes I got from my garden this year. NONE. (And yes, I did plant tomatoes.)

But they followed up. And it looked so cute. And after I explained “NO REALLY, IT HAS TO BE FOOLPROOF” they assured me it is. So far, they’re right.

miraclegro aerogarden review

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Kiawah 2014

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

Oh, the beach house. Why can’t real life be like the beach house?

If you haven’t been reading for years, the beach house belongs to the uncle of one of my friends. He allows us to borrow it once a year for a long weekend. It has 6 bedrooms, each with their own private bath, a huge kitchen, 3 wine fridges, a fully stocked (with alcohol) butler’s pantry, every TV channel ever, a deck and private pool, and beach access to an always deserted private beach. Everything about the beach house is nicer than my own house, including the dishes and beds and beach toys. There is a planter full of herbs that grows on the deck, so if you need fresh basil for dinner it’s right there. The towels and sheets are color coded to the bedrooms, so the cleaning service can put them all back in the right place when we leave. I imagine the beach house is what life is like for celebrities every day.

This year we went from three kids at the beach house to SIX kids at the beach house, ranging in age from 2 months (Linc!) to five years (Evan!). The number of adults actually fell. The weather wasn’t very good and I only made it down to the actual beach once and I drove alone for two days each way to get there AND my car broke down 10 miles from Kiawah…but it was still an amazing vacation.

The beach house is lucky. It turned out my car just had a dead battery, the baby slept through the night, and my often-missing husband even made it to the house for a very brief visit. It was so great to see my friends and talk about life and jobs and changes and babies. We’re already planning for next year’s trip (and saving up for a nanny, since we’ll have 6 actual kids, rather than 3 and 3 babies). I can’t wait.

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Having kids at the same time as your friends works out well.

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The pool was pretty cold. They did not care.

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We try to buy a gift for the owners every year. This year we bought a huge crab pot, so next year I can fit all the lowcountry boil in it.

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So much foooood.

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There’s an old fashioned pharmacy/soda fountain in the shopping center on Kiawah

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The beach was a little bleak without the sun, but it wasn’t too cold for the kids.

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He really wants to learn how to surf

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He was really good at boogie boarding though!

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Linc likes the beach for about 5 minutes.

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The “O” has a sad face in it, because Princess Sadface had a meltdown about…something. We still aren’t sure what.


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Then she cheered up.

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Couch naps, not just for babies!

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Caramel apple pie. Recipe coming soon.

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Caroline LOVED that there were lots of people who let her help in the kitchen.

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Eating cake in her jammies. It was both early for cake and late for jammies. Vacation!!

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He’s not actually that grumpy, he just makes that face.

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Helping with important work. Or maybe playing games.

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Reading to Baby Jesus.

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The appropriate way to eat chocolate ice cream.

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Linc is almost exactly the same size as his 4 month and 6 month old baby friends. FAT BABY, OLD MAN FACE.

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Last morning at the pool

 

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Goodbye beach house! See you next year!

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All The Perfect Little Pieces {Win $100 from Mustela and BlogHer}

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014


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My baby is amazing.

It doesn’t matter that he’s my third baby, and I’ve already done this newborn thing twice before. It doesn’t matter if it’s 2am and I’m exhausted. It doesn’t matter if his tiny fingers are ripping all the hair out of the back of my neck. He’s an itty bitty miracle.

When I’m nursing him, the hairs right behind his ear gleam like they’re made of copper. It’s the only time I am really sure he’s going to be a ginger, since the fuzz that grows in a perfect imitation of his father’s hairline on top of his head is white-blond. When he’s sleeping he makes sniffling snorfling noises and says “mmmmm” and “oooooo” and “eh eh eh eh eh” when he’s having mysterious baby dreams. I can no longer sleep without those noises, or I wake up in a panic that he’s TOO quite or TOO sound asleep. I cover his chest with my palm and feel every rib at once as they move up and down with his breath.

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His ears are like tiny monkey ears on the outside, covered in a light layer of fur, and seashells on the inside, pearly pink and smooth. I can’t stop touching them while he’s sleeping in my lap, because I know in just a few weeks poking him is going to wake him up. When I’m feeling stressed, I smooth the tiny M that Linc gets between his eyes or the lines on his forehead or the little creases he gets by his eyes. His baby skin is so soft, but so incredibly sensitive.

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I first heard of Mustela a few months ago when I was photographing a newborn for a client, and I couldn’t stop smelling their baby. Then a friend suggested it when I mentioned Linc’s cradle cap was acting up. Now I’m the one recommending it to friends for all stages of motherhood. The 2-in-1 Hair & Body Wash is a tear-free, soap-free gel, specially formulated for the delicate skin of babies, but is great on the older kids too. It rinses very easily from Caroline’s hair and truly is tear-free, so there’s no more fighting when it’s time to wash it out.

But our real favorite is the Hydra Bébé Body Lotion. It’s so thick and smooth without being greasy, and absorbs very quickly even on just-washed baby skin. My hands are softer than they’ve been in years just from applying it to the kids. And I have been applying it to all the kids – on Caroline’s eczema-like rough patches, on the rash Evan gets from wiping is face on his sleeve, and on poor sensitive Linc, who gets a new case of baby acne or cradle cap or heat rash every day. They all love the lotion and you should see Linc smile when I’m rubbing it into his adorable chubby baby cheeks.

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Mustela has been trusted by parents for over 60 years and is developing new ways to protect skin both today and in the future. All their products are hypoallergenic and free from parabens, phenoxyethanol, phthalates, EDTA and chlorphenesin. I feel good using their products on every inch of my little miracle for years to come.

You can learn more about their in-depth research, testing methods and science by visiting their website.

Mustela and BlogHer are giving you a chance to win a $100 Visa Gift card. Just leave a comment answering the question, “What is your favorite newborn moment?”  

And don’t forget to check Mustela out on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

 

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You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

1.     Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

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The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 10/7/14 – 11/30/14.

Be sure to visit the Mustela Bébé brand page where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

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