Saturday, June 22, 2013

19 Months!

Leah is 19 months! This little human being has been playing, running, singing and talking non-stop. She's been resisting naps and bedtime recently, because she just wants to play and hang out with us. While it's cute that she loves us so much, it's been exhausting for this mama keeping up with her! Here are some updates:

  • While some new words she says we understand right away, there are others that take us a day or two to figure out. It's been fun deciphering them like "guck"=stuck and "yolio"=cherrios. Then out of the blue when I least expect it, she'll bust out "What is this?" or "I want more of this." 
  • Now that she runs everywhere, she has plenty of tumbles. She's become very aware of her boo boos and tries to milk sympathy. Already a little actress. 
  • She's become an expert iPad gamer! :) She knows exactly how to get to her apps, and it's amazing watching her complete games and levels. 

Leah: Just when I think I couldn't possibly love you more, I do. Sometimes I wish you would sit still for a couple minutes so we could just cuddle. These days, you are often wiggling out of my arms so you could run off and play; however, you still always need to make sure mommy is close by. My favorite times have been after dinner when we're all hanging out in the living room. You go back and forth between mommy and daddy tickling us, climbing into our laps, and playing games with us. You like to tease us by withholding kisses when we ask you for them, and you think that's hilarious. All these little moments warm my heart. Love you so much little one! Happy 19 months!

*photo by Bob Cho, moccasins by Freshly Picked and leggings by House of Mia

Friday, June 21, 2013

Some Favorite Things...

These are currently some of Leah's favorite toys or items I'm putting on Leah's wish list:

1. B. Zany Zoo Activity Cube: Leah has the bigger version of this from One Step Ahead, but that website is currently down. It's probably the most consistent toy she plays with. As she gets older, she's been discovering new features and interacting with it in new ways. Unfortunately, one of those new ways is climbing on top of it!

2. AquaDoodle Jumbo Deluxe Mat: Leah loves to draw. While she's normally good staying on the paper, I am still super paranoid about her marking on the walls. We don't have this yet, but it's on my wish list. She's played with the smaller version and sometimes gets frustrated when she goes off the mat and doesn't see her drawing. This jumbo one seems perfect!

3. Mommy & Me My First Doll Stroller: This is another daily activity in our house. The stroller is light, folds, and has a movable canopy. Leah's really into babies, and she loves to put her baby in the stroller and push it around. The other thing she loves - sitting in it and making mommy and daddy push her. Now if only she liked sitting in her real stroller...

4. Sophie & Lili Custom Dolls: Of course to go with your stroller, you need a doll. Leah has a doll she got from her grandparents, but I've been eyeing these custom dolls. How cute would it be to get one that looked like Leah!?!

5. Melissa & Doug Cooking Set: This is another toy I've been eyeing. Leah's had a few play dates now where her little friends had a kitchen or cooking set. She immediately started putting items in the pans and used the spoon to stir them. It's really cute to watch, and hopefully will foster her love for cooking!

6. Cuddle Plush Elephant Chair: I love this chair just as much as Leah does. It's so soft and comfortable. I kind of wish they came in adult sizes.  :)

What are some of your LO's favorite toys?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Growing Up

Crossing her legs like a big girl

Leah moved up to the next "level" at day care this week. They've been slowly transitioning her for the past month, and she took it like a champ. I was nervous about this, because she was really attached to the caretakers in the nursery. On the other hand, I was looking forward to it, because she was now the oldest in the nursery, and while she loves hugging babies, she couldn't really interact or play with them. On her first official day Monday, the kids all greeted her with a "Hi, Leah!!" It was seriously one of the cutest and sweetest things ever. Kids can just be so loving. She has now become attached to her new teacher, and when I spied on her at the playground this morning, she was hanging out, chit chatting with the ladies like a grown up. I'm hoping as she gets more comfortable with her new class, she will interact and bond with the kids more. 

Another major grown up step she took was weaning off her binky! We were fortunate that she weaned herself from using the binky for bedtime a couple months ago, but I was unsuccessful when I tried to not give it to her for naps. We also used it for the car or during fussy times. Last week, we got a little paranoid about it when a friend mentioned their pediatric dentist recommended they stop ASAP.  Also on Monday, when the teacher saw her binky in her cubby, she told me none of the other kids in the class use one {talk about guilt trip!}. So Tuesday before her nap, I cut the tip off, and told her it was broken. She agreed to throw it in the trash can, and after 5 minutes of crying, she was asleep. Wednesday, she was napping after 1 minute of whining! Although she asked for  it a couple times during car rides, once we got her distracted, she forgot all about it. Woohoo! I'm so proud of you, Leah!

It's been a slightly emotional week seeing our baby girl mature. Can't we keep them this age forever?

Monday, June 17, 2013

Over the Weekend (in iPhone Pics and a Couple Videos)

Joy threw Bob an amazing surprise birthday party!
Made Speculoos popsicles using my Zoku maker. So easy and delicious!

Heading to the Hollywood Farmers Market after church, and hanging out at her favorite spot.

After being out of town for the past 2 weekends, it was nice to be back home spending time with friends and family. We had a low-key Father's Day going to church, hanging out at the Hollywood Farmer's Market, and having a dance party at my brother's.

I'm cracking up at how similar Leah's dancing and golf swing look.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Daddy's Girl

Leah is becoming more and more of a daddy's girl as she gets older. She comes to me for cuddles and comfort, but she goes to "da-da" when she wants to play. A few times she has brought Matt his shoes and will point towards the door to go outside. Of course Matt eats up every second of it. :)

We're looking forward to celebrating another Father's Day over here, and Happy Father's Day to all the daddies out there! 

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Eyes are the Window of the Soul...

As a new mom, our looks are often the last thing on our mind. With the lack of sleep and frequent feedings, we're pretty much in survival mode.  In the mornings, I have very little time to shower and get ready, and I often made the choice to get a couple more minutes of sleep rather than put make up on. Even though I didn't wear a lot of make up before Leah, spending an entire day without make up made me feel unfinished. 

This photo is not me. Photo by Envy Lashes

I mentioned in this post that at the 5 month mark, I started to take time for myself, and one of the things I did was get eyelash extensions with Yen at Envy Lashes! I am now a firm believer that they are a mom necessity! I pretty much have the same morning routine I did before the extensions, but now I feel more put together and confident. They instantly make tired eyes look fresh and alive. My first appointment took about 2 hours for the signature full set application. I like how they look natural with a little more oomph. I get a touch up every 4 weeks which takes an hour. I like to take a nap during my sessions. :)

Before and After (Photos by Clicky Photography)

Yen told me in my last appointment she was moving to a new location in Sherman Oaks, and she generously offered to give my readers $50 off the initial full set for first time customers! It's a great deal, and I hope those an LA can take advantage of it!  

Now go pamper yourself! 

Envy Lashes in Sola Salons
15125 Ventura Blvd.
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

* This was not a paid post

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Avila Valley Barn

If you want a one-stop attraction to take your kids while visiting the Central Coast, Avila Valley Barn is the place to be! One of my favorite aspects about all these social media platforms is getting a chance to "meet" and connect with people from all over. Angel gave me the tip about the Barn, and after I looked it up, I knew we had to go. Thanks Angel!!

We went to the Barn first thing Saturday morning which was the perfect time since it was still pretty quiet. We purchased some goat feed for 50 cents, and fed the goats. Leah at first was terrified to get near them, but once she got the courage to do so, she kept saying "more! more!" It was the cutest thing watching her! After that we walked around to check out all the other animals. 

Afterwards, we hopped on a hayride and got taken down to the farm to pick some berries and peaches. We put Leah in a carrier while we were on the ride to prevent her from wiggling or trying to jump off, and I was able to have my hands free to keep steady. This was my first time picking fruit, and it was so much fun! For some reason there is a sense of satisfaction looking for the ripe fruit to pick and being able to eat it later. Leah enjoyed herself, and we caught her with juice on her face a couple times. Sneaky hands! Our little basket of berries and 6 peaches came out to less than $3!! They were delicious too!

By 11:30, Leah was getting super tired, so we decided to go back to the hotel. When she woke up we were starving, and ended up going back to the Barn for lunch! It was packed by then! We got a delicious tri-tip sandwich and finished lunch off with an oatmeal chocolate chip ice cream shake.  Yum! They offer a kids menu as well, which comes with fruit and a cookie! 

I still have fond thoughts of this place, and hope to go back again. I heard they have fabulous pies as well! 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Before the day is over, I wanted to give a big shout out to my mom. My mom thinks about her kids and family 24/7. We are her greatest joys and biggest worries, and I can now relate having my own little family. My mom is the ultimate mom. When she visits, she brings an ice chest full of food such as washed and trimmed vegetables, my favorite dumplings, cut fruit, milk tea, and special dishes I can't get nearby. Leah gets dishes brought for her as well. She helped clean my house and do my laundry during Leah's newborn days. She also still buys me clothes if she's shopping and sees an item I may like.  I really can go on and on about the things she still does for me and now also does for Matt and Leah. 

Mom - Thank you for continuing to set a great example of what it is to be a mom. You have set the bar high, and I hope to be the type of mom to Leah {and future kid} that you are to me. Happy Birthday!!

Avila Beach

After a fun little work opportunity I got to do Thursday, we spent the second half of the week in Avila Beach. Matt went to college at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, so he has fond memories of the Central Coast. This is now my second time to Avila, and I'm definitely growing fond of this little town as well. 

We stayed at Avila Lighthouse Suites, and it's the perfect little place for a family. When we checked in, we were greeted with homemade cookies. That was a nice treat for Leah to reward her for being so great on the 2.5 hour drive. Every room here is a suite, so we were able to put the crib in the living room area, and Matt and I didn't have to worry about tip toeing around after we put Leah to bed. The hotel provided a "pack and play" for a crib, but I will probably bring our own travel crib if we stay here again. We had an enclosed private patio which was great for Leah. She was able to safely walk in and out of the bedroom, and I could watch her from the room instead of hovering over her scared she'd fall through the railings or roam off. Breakfast was provided every morning, and it had a decent selection of food for the whole family (fruit, hard boiled eggs, yogurt, oatmeal, pastries, cereal, juices, coffee, and DIY waffles). Leah's always starving when she wakes up in the morning, so we were able to wake up and feed her rather than spending time figuring out where we were going to eat. The hotel is pretty much right on the beach, and it's across from the beach playground! It also has a little pool area. 

Sorry! We were too hungry to snap a pic of the BBQ!

On Friday, we walked to the farmers market and grabbed food and dessert. You can get amazing BBQ here! Leah has been a picky eater lately, and she ate everything we gave her! This made me love the farmers market even more! 

Saturday, we spent the first half of the day at Avila Valley Barn. This is a must see if you're in town. I will go into more details about it on tomorrow's post. After Leah's nap, we went to San Luis Obispo to meet up with a med school buddy of Matt's. We ate dinner at Novo Restaurant Lounge, which has a great outdoor seating area. We sat right next to the creek, and Leah was entertained by the ducks.

We had a great little trip here, and we especially loved having Matt with us for the past 2 weeks. We're definitely experiencing the Monday blues over here.

How was your weekend?

Friday, June 7, 2013

San Diego Zoo Safari Park


Waving at the animals

This was my first time at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. The Safari Park is unique because you get to see some of the animals in a more natural environment rather than in a cage. The park is enormous and it's pretty easy to get lost, but there are so many animals to see. I feel like I got a tiny glimpse of Africa, and I would love to one day go on a real African Safari. Leah enjoyed seeing the animals, especially now that she can recognize some of them and imitate the sounds they make. The best part was visiting the gorillas, and watching Leah mimic a gorilla by banging her fists into her chest. Love it! 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Rancho Bernardo Inn

We've been in San Diego since Sunday using our gift from the Ellen show!

Leah's first time using a golf club

The Rancho Bernardo Inn is a very peaceful resort and very kid friendly. In the summer, you can purchase a KidsRule! package that provides activities such as cookie decorating, dive-in movies, treasure hunts, "kids eat free," and much more. There is also a Kids Club room that provides coloring tools, toys, and video games. There is a separate pool for families where they show the movies that has a bunch of water toys provided.

Spa pool

With our package, we received a round of golf and a spa massage. Matt enjoyed his round of golf and said the course was beautiful, and I thoroughly enjoyed my massage. I received my treatment in one of their outdoor, temperature-controlled, casitas where I could hear the peaceful sounds of the water fall. Afterwards, I took a dip in the saline spa pool. The view was gorgeous. I was so relaxed afterwards that I had a hard time walking up the little hill back to the room!

Half a glass of wine and my face is a cherry tomato!

Leah had the most fun just exploring the facilities, swimming in the pool {sometimes twice a day!}, and getting her first experience with golf. After dinner each night, she happily ran around on the putting green for 15-20 minutes with other kids. She was a big hit with all the little boys too! At the pool, 2 boys kept running around finding toys for her to play with, picking them up for her when she threw them, and entertaining her with handstands and flips in the water. They even brought a baby life vest and tried to convince her to put it on for her safety. That same day after dinner, a 2 year old boy gave her a gigantic hug and kiss! So sweet - although, I'm not sure daddy would approve! ;)

We also checked out the San Diego Zoo Safari Park which I will go into more detail in the next post! Stay tuned!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

First Time Mommy Group Picnic

I've been part of this mommy Facebook group for over a year now, and it has grown into a group of over 1,800 women! We had one get together awhile back at the LA Zoo, and this time we had a picnic basically in our backyard at Griffith Park. There were over 100 mommies, daddies, and babies! It was wonderfully organized by Korinna Peterson with food catered from Zankou Chicken, a photographer, games for the whole family to participate in, toys and a baby play pen area, raffle prizes, gift bags, and more! 

Ready to make her move on Hudson
Getting fed puffs by Jace

Our whole family had tons of fun meeting new families, and also catching up with some old friends. It was a gorgeous day, and Leah was in her element getting to roam around and play with other kids/babies. This was the most babies she's ever seen at one time. Leah usually naps around noon, and she held up all the way until 1:30pm! She quickly passed out once we got home though!

Me & Leah, Crystal & Hudson, Masae & Reagan

Poor Leah is exhausted! Photo by SoCal Wedding Photography

I've really enjoyed being part of this group. It's been a great resource for me as a new mommy, the women are so supportive and hilarious, and I love seeing a constant flow of baby photos! Thank you Masae for starting this! 

By the way, they even started a blog right here!

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