If I have promised to share a recipe with you in the past 6 months, here it finally is! Now that I’m home with Leagan cooking in the evenings has been nice ‘actually complete a task time’ and gives Daddy some Leagan time though he normally has the evening fussies! This desire to cook might have some strategic value…

See ALL of my recipes in my CopyMeThat profile, after Ziplist died I moved to CopyMeThat and really like it,my FAVORITE feature is that I can switch my grocery list between by recipe or item category!

Anywho, here are some good but easy things I’ve been feeding us lately.

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PF Chang’s Lettuce Wraps via Damn Delicious

These are spot on and easy! If you like them at PF Chang’s it’s worth buying all the special stuff to make these since you’ll definitely be making them again.

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Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup in a Pressure Cooker via Pressure Cooking Today

Gotta love the pressure cooker especially since they are so popular now and more recipes are popping up. This one’s rich flavor is awesome and the pressure makes the celery’s texture seem like a potato!

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Sausage Breakfast Casserole via Two Peas and their Pod (My photo =)

Breastfeeding makes me HANGRY especially in the morning, so one Saturday I made this monster casserole and it was so nice to have for the next few days.

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Slow Cooker Salsa Verde Honey Lime Chicken Tacos via Carlsbad Cravings

Remember that salsa jar crockpot chicken recipe that EVERYONE was making like 6 years ago? This is the grown up actually flavorful version of this, soo sooo good! I totally burned Andrew out on the salsa chicken but he really liked this! Go ahead and buy the smoked paprika it really adds a lot, McCormick now has one so it isn’t one of those $7 spices you’ll never use again.

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Cinnamon Roll French Toast via Tasty

So bad, so easy, half it for 2.  Good holiday breakfast treat!

 

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One Pot Red Beans and Rice via Iowa Girl Eats

This recipe is new to us and already getting worn out! I love that it’s easy and stuff we generally have, I keep a Andouille in stock so I can pull this out when I want to cook but not.

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Simple Baked Chicken Breasts via All Recipes

I STINK at pan cooking chicken so this has become my foolproof method of adding chicken to whatever else I’m making, so good so easy. I generally cut each breast in half to get more flavor and will sometimes broil for a few seconds to get a bit more color.  Great method and easy to handle on top of your other cooking.

Those are our latest favorites, you have any new favorites in your house to share?

I made these matching contoured suck pads (corner drool pads) for my Sewtoot Little Pick Me Up Carrier I sewed in December.LPMU Suck Pads (1)

I used the fabulous free pattern and tutorial from Katie’s KPs, the Tula version and they fit well!

I used the same chambray I used for the hood for these pads, some low loft poly batting, and white flannel as the lining, but they are also reversible. (I got super lucky at my FAVORITE crafty store SMART Supplies and found a ton of this chambray, it’s been so handy!)

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A few tips… don’t be lazy while cutting, the shapes are awkward to sew and it’ll be easier to match them if you took the time to cut them well.

Before placing your snaps definitely test on your carrier to see how much overlap you need.

They fit really nicely on my baby sized panel but I think they will work well on a standard as well.

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Here’s a starter tour of Leagan’s Winnie the Pooh nursery with pictures from his ‘one month’ mommy photoshoot.

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View from the door. Chandelier was originally in our dining room when we bought the house. The crib was mine when I was little, it’s an 80s Ikea crib and it’s a European size so it fits through the door and my Dad put casters on it! I ordered a custom crib mattress for it from Ababy.com.

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A wire closet system is behind the curtain wall, crafted with Ikea curtains and hardware.

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A peek behind the center curtain and the tons of clothes!

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For his mobile I picked up a coordinating one cheap at a consignment sale and replaced the animals with Pooh characters, a tutorial is to follow.

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I made the roman shade when this was my dressing room luckily, I made it in white and just added some appliques to dress it up. The chair is from my parent’s house. I upholstered the foot stool.

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The shadow boxes I made here, and have stolen them back from my parents. Leagan’s Great Aunt made this great mixed media canvas for him. The stained glass has been my Dad’s for ages and is now Leagan’s.

IMG_1651 We turned a unfinished birdhouse into "Owl's House" and made it a night light, a tutorial is to come.

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The 100 Aker Wood map decal is Roomates, I cut it to fit the bifold doors. I used the “hinge method” of vinyl application and it worked well. The base color is the same as the door so it looks painted!

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The Classic Pooh sign is from a store display, an old coworker gave it to me 7 years ago… I knew it’d be a nursery piece someday!

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The Ikea Malm dresser we had in another room. I found branch shelf brackets on clearance at West Elm. We used a stair tread as the shelf. Nana found the Hunny pot lamp and shade.

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The “Little Black Rain Cloud” mobile was a true labor of love but turned out amazing! I’ll share my tips in a future post!

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From below.

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Over the door we added a “Mr. Sanders” sign since “Pooh lived under the name of Sanders”

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Here’s Leagan at 1 month. I made several sheets with matching changing pad covers.

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1.Placemat

A cute wipe-able placemat on your changing table gives you a perfect place to set the dirty diaper, wipe, and blow-out disaster onesies. Protects your dresser from that soggy diaper you never put in the pail. If you have a theme you might be able to even find a coordinating one.

We have an Ikea dresser so the constant cleaning would definitely ruin the delicate surface. We cloth diaper part time and this is also great to have a surface to squirt water onto the wipe.

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2. Flashlight

We don’t exactly design our changing stations with the task lighting we need, so I keep a little flashlight in the drawer so I can check and see if that is the beginning of rash so I can tackle it early on! Good for middle of the night poopy changes too where you’re trying to keep it as dim as possible.5-surprising-changing-table-essentials (16)

3. Bum Brush, not really unexpected but awesome

So I laughed at this but it really is helpful and pays for itself in saved cream since you’re not coating your fingers just to wash it off. It EVEN saves you TIME because getting cream off takes forever. PLUS with your placemat it’ll suction great! (Note: I’ve seen this in several stores locally lately even my Kroger so look there too)5-surprising-changing-table-essentials (11)

4. Stain Treater

I don’t have a favorite for battling stains yet, but I do like having a treatment right at the changing table, I treat while I have two hands and then drop it off at the kitchen sink to deal with later. Currently I use Grandma’s at the changing table since it’s a nice small bottle and then use some dish soap in the sink.5-surprising-changing-table-essentials (14)

5. Paper Towels

If I know a diaper is gonna be a big mess I add a paper towel on top of my Munchkin changing pad liner, especially good in the early days of messy meconium. I don’t keep a whole roll in there but I always have a few sheets folded in the drawer ready to grab.

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What are your changing table essentials? Do you even use yours? Since his nursery is right off our kitchen we use it pretty much always.

6 weeks into this Mommy thing, I’ve learned a few things that will make my Mommy friends laugh… I thought I stayed pretty ‘grounded’ with my preggo ideas thanks to my awesome Mom-tribe but somethings you just discover…
1. My super cute West Elm had to have shelf brackets…yeah they are really just glorified soggy clothing items now…
Granted this has worked out well for rotating between two different cloth diaper covers… I can always find it!New mommy reality, west elm brackets = blowout drying rack
2. My nails haven’t been this short since I played piano in the seventh grade… first time you scratch your babe you’ll be nail clipping!shortest finger nails since 7th grade piano
3. Even if your rings managed to stay fitting throughout your pregnancy (mine did) you probably won’t wear them for a while because you’re mostly home, it’s easy to scratch him with it, and the prongs snag muslin blankets really easily!
4. If you want a photo in xyz outfit take it right away… some days your laundry pile might look like this…
One days outfits
5. Sometimes none of your ‘tricks’ work and it’s hard, but you’ll get through it!
6. You might actually dig the granny panties you bought for post-partum at home…
7. You have never felt love this deep in all your life!
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After a scheduled c-section (breech), a canceled c-section 15 minute before the start (no longer breech), lots of waiting, and then a scheduled induction we finally welcomed Leagan Jameson 10 days late on September 6, 2016 at 6:55 AM!First photo with Mommy!

Leagan’s first name is  Andrew’s Maternal Great Grandmother’s maiden name, and Andrew’s Grandfather’s middle name. We are so happy to have come up with something unique, meaningful, and pronounceable!

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Here’s his announcement I made, Winnie the Pooh themed! Lots of nursery posts coming soon!

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 We have a corner lot so our driveway isn't actually on 'our street'  so even after 62 years this is the first path to the front door from the mailbox!!



This is one of the projects we totally thought was going to happen in the first six months at the house... now 3 years later we're done with it!

We debated what we wanted to do, our dream was brick pravers but that was going to be cost prohibitive, so then we considered pea gravel but that's too messy for mowing, then one day at Lowes we spotted aggregate 2' x 2' pavers that match our driveway.

We used 12 bigger pavers and 3 smaller pavers to go across our little 'bridge'

Using stakes and rope we laid out the pavers in a straight line. Then we spaced the pavers to match our walking strides, this turned out to be the trickiest part. In the end we had about a 6" gap between the pavers which is a little to much for my stride but any less grass than that didn't look that great.  Before we recessed the pavers we left them on top of the grass for a while to test out the stride and to kill the grass to make digging a little easier.

To recess the pavers Andrew dug out a few i inches added, tamped it down, added some base and some sand. Since we knew they would continue to settle we left them a little above ground level perfect for easy mowing.


Budget wise we spent about $200 on pavers plus a few bags of base and sand! What a huge difference in our curb appeal, guess I need to finally plant some flowers in those pots!
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Summer 2014’s (yeah I’m a little behind…) big expensive project was redoing all the beds around the house. We purchased the home from an estate, and the father had been ill for quite sometime, so the yard had been minimally maintained for several years.
There was virtually no mulch left anywhere and the timbers were pretty rotted, other than the big bushes we could never manage to pull out we were starting from scratch.
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It took us a weekend to just pull out all of the junk we hadn’t yet, then we did the timbers, landscape fabric and rock the following 3 day weekend.
Instead of landscape timbers we chose 4x4 ground pressure treated wood, which we stained with some reddish Thompsons Water Seal we already had. The stain helped reduce the icky pressure treated greeness. We’re hoping that by going pressure treated these will last a long time.

We went with the lava rock, based on cost and weight. Moving “light lava rock” was hard work, I can’t imagine us moving one of the heavier rocks. It’s also helps that it’s one of the cheapest since the front of our house is 70 feet long, we needed 1.5 tons of rock! It also goes well with the color of our brick.
We also decided to go with rock because we have very deep eves, so all along the house we just have dry dusty dirt.

Two years later our rock and timbers still look great, the weed block is doing a a pretty good job too considering we had a ton of annoying invasive vines.

I've been busy working on operation Making Room for Baby now that my first trimester fatique has worn off.

Since our master bedroom is off the kitchen the best nursery room is my dressing room so I've been working on reducing my clothes to fit into our current guest room. (Lots of designer goodies are now listed in my Tradesy closet)

After 2 weekends of sorting the odds weren't looking good... I started looking for ways to cheat...

A couple of Amazon searches later I found my answer! This beauty is a high rise bedframe with 16.5" of clearance underneath it! That's tall enough for your average big storage tote!

 So for $110 added 58 cubic feet of storage to my guest room and all I had to do was ditch the box spring that squeaked anyway! Even better our medium size suitcase fit under it on it's side!

Since it's a oversize 'Prime' product it took awhile to get here, so I continually planned ten tons of stuff I was hoping to fit under there to the point I joked that I it was going to turn into Narnia under the bed! So far most of it is fitting.


It's super strong and sturdy and was very easy to put together!

For the bedskirt I just took the velcro off the old boxspring (see my easy velcro bedskirt post) and stuck it to the metal frame. I'll need to add a border to the end of the bedskirt to make it a little longer. The velcro will be great to remove the bedskirt when doing big swap arounds of stuff.

If you're not willing to give up your boxspring they also make a slightly shorter one that still has more clearance than your average Hollywood style bedframe, but won't make your bed too high. 

This is not a sponsored post I'm just super excited about this easy storage solution.