Merry Christmas 2016 + a gift to you

Merry Christmas from my family to yours!


This is definitely our most special Christmas yet, as it is Taylor’s first. Christmas is already a important celebration to us, but there is something even more magical this year. Today we’re heading out to spend time with our best friends, and then to church this evening (wish us luck getting through an hour with a squirmy 8.5 month old!).Whatever you do to celebrate, I hope that you have a lovely next few days full of yummy food, laughter, friends and family time.

I’m so thankful that you read this blog, and wanted to give a little early Christmas gift as a token of that appreciation. Below is a gift card to Starbucks loaded with $50; you just need to ask your barista to scan the barcode. Please use the card for just one drink so that as many people as possible can grab a festive beverage today (skinny peppermint mocha anyone?!). Enjoy! And, please forgive the “Hi Merry” – apparently I don’t know how to fill in fields properly : )

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Let me know what you get down in the comments!

 

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Mommin’ Ain’t Easy – 12 Things I Never Understood About Moms, Until I Became One

Thank you to threadtank.com for sending me the graphic t-shirts featured in this post.

I became a mama at a ripe 32 years old, and I’m 33 now. I grew up thinking I’d be a young, stay at home mom, but this not-so-young, working mom wouldn’t change a thing about the timeline of my life. The moment Taylor was placed on my chest I felt a deep confirmation that God had been with me through everything I’ve experienced – the light and the dark – and worked all of that together for good. After all, he gave me the honor of raising the most beautiful being I’ve ever met. But, back to being 33…

As a not-so-young-mom, I’ve watched many people and almost all of my girl friends have babies before me. The latter has been a super great advantage because I have these amazing moms to emulate and field my gazillion new mama questions. I also now realize that there were so many things I didn’t quite understand about being a mom, especially a new mom, and how it impacts your decision making that make complete sense to me now that I am one myself.

I get this now.

Here are 12 things I never fully understood about mom life, that I SO get now:

1.Leaving your baby to stay overnight is either out of the question, or really, really {did I say really?} hard to do. I have yet to leave Taylor overnight and it would take a momentous occasion for me to even consider doing so. I’ve already had to say no to several super fun opportunities because I’m just not ready to leave T overnight. Plus, having to bringing and use pump every few hours on an overnight really takes away some of the “fun” element.

2. Going out to dinner with friends with a baby is sometimes more stress than it’s worth. It’s not that we don’t want to get together with friends all the time (like we used to), it’s just that we can’t even be present when we’re trying to manage/wrangle a squirmy baby with a 2 minute attention span and a 7:00 PM bedtime.

3. Being selfish with night and weekend time. As a working mom it’s really hard to give up any of the time you do get to spend with your babe to anything or anyone else, no matter how much you enjoy their company. I ADORE my friends, but I have this thing inside me that feels guilty for spending any more time away from Taylor than I already do during the week.

4. Next level tiredness. Before having a newborn and now an 8 month old going through teething/sleep regression, I thought I understood what being tired felt like too. Since having Taylor I’ve put the coffee creamer away in the dish cupboard, forgotten work deadlines and where I left my keys embarrassingly too often, almost hit a man on a bike coming out of the Whole Food parking lot, and lost my $h*# on my poor husband for the smallest things ever, all on account of being so Mombie-status tired. Sleep deprivation is no joke, and I didn’t understand how impactful it would be.

5. Leaving careers (and salaries!) that took a lot of time and education to achieve to stay home with your babies. I thought I would never consider the SAHM life, and be one of those rockstar professionals who was ready to get back to work following Maternity Leave, especially because I have a job and colleagues I truly enjoy… Well, I’ve pined to be home with my baby girl since my first day back.

Shoes: Steve Madden // Denim: Vici Dolls // Graphic Tee: Thread Tank

6. Canceling plans last minute or being perpetually late to them. With a baby/kids involved, there are just way too many variables in play (naps, tantrums, mom exhaustion, colds, blowouts, etc.). As much as I value being reliable and on time, my schedule is not only my own anymore and I’m thankful for my friends (moms and non-moms) who just get it.

7. Not answering texts or voicemails until days later, or at all.  Whereas I used to be a pretty insta-responder, I’m now totally guilty of this. I used to think there was no excuse for this, but you guys, “mom brain” is real.

8. Hiring a part time nanny as a stay at home mom. I don’t have any friends who have actually done this and I’m not planning to anytime soon,  but I definitely wouldn’t judge anyone who did. I actually find that it’s harder to get anything done or squeeze in a little “me time” on days I’m at home. On work days, at least I know I’ll have 20 minutes of solitude and podcast listening on my commute whereas stay at home mom rarely get any alone time to recharge (God bless you sweet SAHMs!). I now totally understand why, if you could afford to, a stay or work at home mom would hire a nanny and can see how that would allow for more balance/”me time”.

9. The desire to “Twin”. I seriously thought this was the most ridiculous concept ever. Then I had an adorable little mini-me (I also always hated that phrase, and kinda still do) and now I can’t stop looking for the perfect twinning get ups.

Mama Bear Baseball Tee: Thread Tank // Headband: KRZA // Re-growth: Me

Taylor’s Baseball Tee: American Apparel (sold out on their site, but I found it on Amazon)

10. Persevering with breastfeeding. I thought, ‘if it’s hard, why not just give up and switch to formula immediately?’ Well, now that I’m a mom and find myself still pumping/scheduling/sterilizing/worrying about supply/etc. after being back to work for 5+ months in order to continue breastfeeding my 8 month old, I so get it. It’s not easy,  but I’ve made the choice to do everything I can to make it work until it doesn’t anymore. That connection is something I’m not ready to let go of yet, and I hope I won’t have to anytime soon.

11. Pinterest. I was a casual Pinterester pre-Taylor, but literally the day after she was born I started curating all kinds of baby related boards with the best information and articles I could find. I spent hour upon hour reading from Pinterest during those round the clock newborn nursing sessions. Follow me at Taylormademama and save yourself a ton of time and research.

12. The crazy-making,heart-changing, life-altering love for a child. I didn’t understand how much my heart could expand to even try to contain the love I have for my daughter. I would give anything to and do anything for her, and I’m sure I’ll make some crazy mama bear moves with her at the front of my mind.

And, mama, give yourself huge kudos and extra grace because Mommin’ ain’t an easy gig, but it’s the best one around.

Can you relate to any of my “now I get its”? What is something you didn’t understand about mom life until you became one yourself? I’d love if you would leave me a comment and let me know!

This page contains some affiliate links for your convenience. If you purchase through a link, THANK YOU!

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Easy Monkey Bread Mini Recipe

This is a recipe my college roommates and I made entirely too often, back in the days when my metabolism was still moving at lightening speed (thank goodness). Flash forward way more than 10 years and I’m still enjoying this tried and true, easy-peasy recipe. I’ve made this Monkey Bread for my immediate family every year on Christmas morning as the recipe became and instant favorite and tradition When my husband came into the picture, he too fell in love with the tradition of Christmas Morning Monkey Bread; we even made it a couple years ago when we vacationed in Hawaii for Christmas – how’s that for a Mele Kalikimaka! In college, we would throw all the cinnamon-sugar coated dough into a bundt pan, bake and go at a massive pile of pull-apart yumminess with no regard for calories. However, in my post-college years – trying to limit my own intake jusssst a little, I started to make a mini version of this Monkey Bread using a muffin tin. Although my attempts to portion control almost always fail – it’s way too good to have just one -the presentation is super cute, the mini versions are perfect to serve to guests on individual plates.

AJ and I enjoyed the round of monkey bread yielded from the making of this post immensely, and even let Taylor have a little taste of cinnamon sugar. I can’t wait for her to be old enough to fully partake in this tradition with us! I hope you enjoy this quick, easy and delicious recipe for years to come as well.

 

Easy Monkey Bread Minis

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 cans refrigerated biscuit dough (I used Pillsbury Grands)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Melt butter and brown sugar in a medium sauce pan on low, stirring regularly.

  3. In a wide bowl, mix granulated sugar and cinnamon.

  4. Cut biscuits into 6 pieces each.

  5. Roll the biscuit pieces in the cinnamon sugar until thoroughly coated.

  6. Place 5-6 biscuit pieces into each muffin tray cup (if you’re smarter than me you’ll remember to put foil liners in first!)

  7. Spoon or pour 1 teaspoon butter/brown sugar mixture on top of each cup.

  8. Bake at 350 for 13-15 minutes, or until done.

  9. Let cool for several minutes, serve and enjoy!

What are your favorite, traditional family recipes and treats around the holidays?

Foil liners on sale:

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Baby Girl’s First Christmas Gift Guide

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. All the opinions are 100% mine. If you use a link to purchase an item you like too, thank you!

A baby’s first Christmas is such a special time and even though they won’t remember it, you will treasure the memories for the rest of your life. Picking out a few special gifts (and giving Grandparents the opportunity to spoil your babe with all the rest) is just one of the wonderful traditions of Christmas, like picking out the perfect 1st Christmas dress or starting an Advent calendar countdown as a family.  For Taylor’s first Christmas (she’ll be 8.5 months) I wanted to get her a few practical stocking stuffers, a couple toys she can enjoy right away, a few that she’ll grow into in the next several months and one special/sentimental gift she’ll appreciate at some point later. This gift guide includes gifts I have purchased for Taylor, gift suggestions I’ve given to her grandparents, and a few extra ideas I think would be extra special for your little darling’s first holiday. I’m hoping you find some last minute baby girl gift inspiration for your or a friend’s sweet baby girl.

P.S. If you still have some shopping to do for your hubs (or brother, BroFF, etc.), check out my Holiday Gift Guide For Him.

  1. Winter sweater
  2. Converse Allstars – I asked my hubby to get me an adult pair – twinning for the win!
  3. Musical instrument set 
  4. 14K Gold bangle – this is super special gift that can be passed down from generation to generation. There is a less expensive version here.
  5. Alphabet puzzle 
  6. Animal rocker 
  7. Activity cube
  8. Bonds Wondersuits – seriously, I cannot get enough of these for Taylor – she lives in them and has since she was born. Read more about my obsession in this post, and stock up for your babe because they’re 2 for $39 right now.
  9. Personalized arm chair – I love this one because we found a cover color that’s an exact match to our living room sofa.
  10. Wooden baby key set – perfect stocking stuffer!
  11. Bucket of blocks 
  12. Wooden Tooth teether – another aptly sized, and practical stocking stuffer
  13. Baby iPhone – I “accidentally” already gave this to Taylor, and she is LOVING it.
  14. Freshly Picked Moccasins – I bought the style, “Pin the Petal,” but they have a million other cute colors/patterns to choose from. I love that these will have her little footprints embedded in the leather forever!
  15. Christmas Pajamas – we actually have a whole family set of these which you can check out in this post. Right now you can get up to 40% off, while supplies last. Valid 11/7-12/25.
  16. Rainbow stacking tower – or the classic version here!
  17. The Wonderful Things You Will Be – this sweet book has the most beautiful illustrations.
  18. 1st Christmas ornament by Kate Spade

Happy shopping, mama!


Join The Party! Save 25% On Sleighloads of Sleepwear at Hanna Andersson. Valid 11/7-12/25. 300x350

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A Busy Mom’s Motivation To Work Out

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Hi Mamas!

I haven’t done a fitness post in a LONG time. That’s mostly because, as much as it used to be my “thing” (e.g. 14 half marathons, competing in CrossFit, wanna-be body building, etc.), since becoming a new mom I’ve been struggling to feel as passionate about working out as I have in the past.

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Pre-preggo/baby, when working out was a top priority and I had free time (what’s that?).

Maybe it’s the lack of sleep (thank you teething/growth spurt/sleep regression/whatever), the minimal time left after trying to be excellent at my job whilst trying to be an excellent new mom (I’m not accomplishing either of those to that standard, FYI), or the general discomfort I feel when I actually do work out, but I’ve been cutting myself a break in the workout department these last few months. Now, I haven’t completely fallen off the wagon, as I am still eating relatively healthily (90% of the battle) and making sure I am active in some form 3-4 days per week which usually consists of a gym workout once or twice, a few walks, and lots of planks and push-ups during crime show commercials after Taylor has gone to sleep…

All that to say that I worked out Sunday night after a really long week (I think I slept a cumulative 21 hours, and I say “think” because I barely can…) and during my warm up thought through the reasons why I continue to make fitness a part of my life even when I don’t feel like doing so. This thinking got me re-motivated and I wanted to share that with you in case you were feeling as lackluster about fitness as I was. It’s easy to want to put it on the back burner, or even give it up entirely, when we’re SO busy as moms trying to do “it all,” but there are many valuable reasons -both physical and mental – to persevere and find some time to move.

At this stage in my life as a new, working away from the home mom, these are the reasons that motivate me to work out, in no particular order:

  1. A clear mind – as moms we have SO many “to dos” running through our minds at all times. For me, working out is the space where I permit myself to turn all of that off and tune in only to what I’m doing physically. Even if it’s a few rounds of 1 minute plank holds (which, by the way, are infinitely harder after childbirth) giving my neurotic mind a mini-break is well worth the effort. If you need one reason to workout, let this be the one.
  2. Alone time – aside from driving in my car to and from work, one of the only times I am alone is when I go for a workout. We have a gym in our garage, but I find that I crave going to the actual brick and mortar gym – it’s so tempting to cut my workout short when I know my precious baby is just a few steps beyond my garage door whereas if I’ve driven to the gym I’ll usually put in at least 45 minutes. As much as I love being with my family, I also need to have time where I don’t have to interact with anyone in the world; As an introvert, this time is integral to my feeling balanced and refreshed. Any other introvert mamas out there who relate?
  3. A confidence boost – when I’m working out consistently I definitely keep my shoulders more square and hold my head a little higher. Working toward a goal – whether strength or aesthetic – makes me feel really good about myself. If you work out consistently, you know what I mean. If you haven’t given yourself this gift, you certainly deserve to.
  4. Endorphins – when we exercise, our bodies release these amazing, feel- good hormones that can be just as addicting as any other vice; I got hooked in high school and haven’t been able to quit them since! I find that, even on sleep deprived nights like last night, no matter how tired I am if I can just motivate myself to move – go for a jog, a short but intense workout, etc. – I get an instant mood and energy lift. Who couldn’t use a little more of that in their life?
  5. Getting my “body back” – as much as that phrase irritates me, and I think that all moms (and women) are beautiful no matter what their physical state, I honestly do want to get back into fighting shape eventually. For each mama getting your “body back” looks a little different, but I go by the mantra that the ideal weight/shape is whatever you reach when you are living the healthiest life you actually enjoy living; I’m sure this will look different for me at this stage in my life than it has in the past, and than it may look in the future. The most important motivator is that physical strength & ability translates into mental fortitude – which I for one can always use an extra dose of!

Why do you work out? What is motivating to you to keep moving and take care of yourself physically? If you don’t already, do any of these reasons make you consider incorporating workouts into your (busy) life? Leave a comment and let me know!

Here are a couple of the workouts I’ve done lately, at home and at the gym. If you’re looking for ideas, Pin these for when you find time in the coming weeks:

home-workout

gym-workout

xo, Ashley (1)


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The Perfect 1st Christmas Dress for Baby

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This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. All opinions are 100% mine.

I’m so excited to share Christmas with Taylor this year; there is something even more magical about entering the holiday season now that she is here with us. Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, firstly because of the meaning and secondly because of all the wonderful memories I have from this special season growing up. From decorating a gumdrop tree and frosting sugar cookies, to our family Advent calendar, my mom made Christmas truly meaningful and special every year.

Although Taylor won’t remember this year, I still want it to be rich with traditions for our little family. To start, my husband and I haven’t had a Christmas tree in years, but now we’re itching to decorate and enjoy one with Taylor. I know she’ll love looking at all the sparkling lights. I just snagged this Land of Nod Advent Calendar, and I’m hoping it arrives before December first. We’ll spend Christmas morning here at our house as a family of three opening presents, emptying stockings, eating Monkey Bread (can I purée that?) and listening to Christmas music via Spotify. Later in the afternoon, we’ll spend time with our immediate families/the grandparents.

On Christmas Eve we plan to attend church, which could get a little “interesting” on account of the service overlapping with T’s bedtime…. Earlier this month I set out to find the perfect first Christmas dress for Taylor to wear to church, and Janie and Jack came through. Honestly, I don’t buy from Janie and Jack too often because it’s a little pricey for me (although when they’re having a sale, you better believe I’m all over it!), but for a special occasion or staple pieces their style and quality is well worth it. Here are all the details for what is, in my opinion, a perfect 1st Christmas dress and accessories {links to each piece are linked in the titles}:

Dress & Headband:

Shoes & Tights:

The bracelet I wore as a baby.


What were the first Christmas/Holiday traditions you established with your baby? If you’re a new mom like me, what are you looking most forward to about your babe’s first holiday season?

xo, Ashley (1)

Shop Janie and Jack

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Holiday Gift Guide – For Him

Introducing the NEW Exfoliating Peel Spray

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This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. All recommendations are mine (w/ input from a few men in my life!)

I didn’t discover “gift guides” until recently via Pinterest, and sure could have used them in years past – especially when it came to shopping for my hubby/men in my life!  To create my holiday ‘Gift Guide For Him’, I polled my husband, and solicited suggestions from my friends’ husbands, all who have great taste; You’re sure to find a gift or two from this list that you’ll feel excited to give to the men in your life!

1. Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Speaker // 2. Anthony shave lotion // 3. Wooden phone case // 4. Fitbit (on sale now) // 5. Cocktail Shaker (on sale now) // 6. Billfold (less expensive version here) // 7. Beard oil // 8. Leather toiletry kit // 9. Daddy & Me Converse AllStars // 10. ILY Couture Watch // 11.Herringbone Cuff links // 12. Backpack (Daddy diaper bag) // 13.“Dad” Graphic t-shirt // 14. ILY Couture “Mr. Santa” Mug // 15. Timberland Boots (less expensive version here) 16. Metal collar stays // 17.Wireless in-ear sport headphones // 18. Travel mug (on sale, and 9 colors to choose from) // 19. Watch case (only $12.99) // 20. Beardsman’s Kit  

Have you found any gifts for the men in your family? I’d love to know – I have a few more to shop for this season. Hopefully you’ll snag a few items from this list to spoil your guy!

xo, Ashley (1)

P.S. Thanksgiving is next week! If you need some recipe/meal plan inspiration check out this post and download the free meal planner! Annnnnnd, if you don’t already have a super cheesy cute set of matching family pajamas, check out these from Hanna Andersson – I literally cannot wait to wear ours!

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Matching Christmas Pajamas For The Whole Family

I don’t know what’s gotten into me, but I’ve become into coordinating, matching, and twinning with my family. I swore I wouldn’t be that mom, but I’m totally owning it.

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Twinning Exhibit A

After getting my husband to agree, although I’m not completely sure he knows what he signed up for, I could not resist ordering Family Matching Pajamas from Hanna Andersson for Christmas morning this year. Stay tuned for epic Christmas morning pictures. I mean, how cute are these?

Is it Christmas morning yet?
Is it Christmas morning yet?

I am posting this today because, today only (11/13/16), you can save 30% off EVERYTHING at Hanna Andersson, including any of their adorable matching Holiday PJs. They were already out of stock on several sizes and patterns when I bought ours, so make sure to get over to Hanna Andersson asap if this is a tradition you have or want to start with your family too!

Here are some of the other Matching Family Pajama patterns I’m dying over:

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I might take advantage of the 30% off sale today and snag a size that will fit Taylor next year so that we don’t have to buy a completely different set for next year. Or maybe we will sport a new family ensemble each year! It’s so fun to start building family holiday traditions.

What are your favorite family holiday traditions? Would you wear matching pajamas like these?

xo, Ashley (1)

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A Mostly Gluten Free Thanksgiving Meal Planner


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Can you believe Thanksgiving is only a couple weeks away? I know every mom always says it repeatedly but, time sure does fly. This time last year I was nearly 5 months pregnant with sweet Taylor, and now she is almost 7 months old. What the what?! For T’s first Thanksgiving we will be hosting a meal for my hubby’s family at our house on the day before Thanksgiving, then going to my parents’ home for the day of. I’m especially looking forward to Thanksgiving this year because we will finally get to meet my sweet little niece, who lives out of state with my brother and sister-in-law. She was born only 3.5 months after Taylor, and I can’t wait to meet/snuggle her and see the cousins interact.

This time last year I was planning to host my first ever Thanksgiving Friendsgiving for my husband, four of our best friends, and their 3 babes. I like to cook but, admittedly, I had only ever really cooked for two up to that point. We also only have one oven in our house. Those two factors combined [oh, and being 5 months preggo and exhausted] made preparing a Thanksgiving meal pretty intimidating. How would I time soooooo many different dishes, oven temps, set ups, etc…?? As I’ve mentioned before, preparation helps me feel more in control when I actually have no clue what I’m doing, so I rounded up the most delicious sounding gluten free recipes I could find and planned out a detailed schedule for the day prior to and day of the meal/event. The food all turned out really well (yeay me for being able to follow someone else’s recipe!), but I definitely had to do some post-game tweaking to the timing piece of the plan. I didn’t give myself enough time and we ended up eating about 45 minutes after I planned to have dinner ready. My best friends each brought a side dish (yams and stuffing) so those items were not originally included on my meal planner – I hope the recipes I’ve selected are close to as delicious as theirs were. Now that my game plan has been refined and the extra side dishes selected, I’m totally hopefully ready for this year’s Thanksgiving meal!

Decor wise, I went a little less traditional last year (think brown + yellow + orange) and chose a burgundy/cream color palette, inspired by the dried purple corn and off-white pumpkins I saw/bought at the market. I am pretty sure that everything on the table, except for the food, is all from Crate & Barrel in case you’re wondering. I’m planning to use the same table set up this year because I loved the look so much. I wish I had taken more pictures last year, but here is one one I could find from my photo archives:

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The rest of the food was to the right, on our serving table.

I thought I would share the plan I used for my 2015 Friendsgiving meal, in case you need some Thanksgiving host-spiration for 2016, or just an extra side dish recipe!

The meal plan/schedule for the day includes:

  1. a grocery shopping list for the full meal (beverages, appetizers, main dishes and dessert)
  2. links to the most delicious gluten free recipes I could find (including a delish signature cocktail and an AH-mazing Martha Stewart salad that I could literally eat for every meal)
  3. prep and cook time for each recipe
  4. start times for each recipe according to oven temp and prep/cook time to ensure your food is hot and ready when you need it to be.

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If you would like a downloadable version of this plan, enter your name and email in the field below and I will send it straight to your email inbox:

Lastly, here is a super cute blog post from Land of Nod on Kid Friendly Thanksgiving Table decor, that includes several free printable activities for kids to do at the table! Taylor is too young this year, but if you have older kiddos perhaps you can use some of these printables to entertain them.

I’m thankful for so much in life, but most of all my sweet baby girl and our family. What are your Thanksgiving plans this year? What are you most thankful for?

xo, Ashley (1)

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What’s In My {un} Diaper Bag

 

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This page contains affiliate links for your convenience. All linked products are ones I actually use.

I don’t really know how many of you actually care what’s specifically in my diaper bag, but I do think you’ll be interested in an awesome insert created by Tote Savvy that can transform your favorite purse or tote into a {un} diaper bag. I purchased the mini version in soft grey, and am loving it; now when I’m out and about with Taylor I don’t have to bring both my diaper bag and a purse, or stuff all the contents I would have in my purse into and lug around a huge diaper bag. The larger size Tote Savvy insert allows you to fit literally everything you’d have in your larger diaper bag into your favorite tote. I would totally have opted for that had I found out about Tote Savvy before buying this diaper bag. Luckily, I have a really well-stocked baby car kit in my trunk that has spare clothes and other items I can’t quite fit into my purse, that I can always head back to the car for in case of emergency. However, I’m definitely able to pack all the essentials into my {un} diaper bag AND look like a stylin’ mama thanks to Tote Savvy!

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Tote Savvy – a must have for style conscious mamas.
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Organization meets style.
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Toting my {un} diaper bag at the park.

If you’re super uninterested in the contents of my diaper bag (understandable), make sure you scroll down to the bottom of this post for a sweet discount code to purchase a Tote Savvy insert and transform your own bag! Tote Savvy inserts are one of the items I think would make a GREAT gift for a new mom (see the others on my list in this post) so stock up for baby showers and/or Christmas gifts for any mamas-to-be or new moms in your life.

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Have you checked out the new Resource page yet? Click here!

Without further ado, here is everything I need to pack in my {un} diaper bag for a day out with my baby girl – it’s my hope that you’ll find something useful to help you feel even a little bit more prepared or organized:

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  1. Purse
  2. Wallet (thanks Hubby!)
  3. Pacifier – I like storing extra pacis in small tupperware containers like these or these. The only pacis Taylor will take are these.
  4. Teether – Sophie (I thought this was so overrated, but it turned out that Taylor LOVES it/her!)
  5. Snack – dried mango slabs which keep her happy & entertained for a good 20 {supervised} minutes. Make sure to buy unsweetened, organic, wide slabs so that your babe can’t fit the mango all the way into his/her mouth. We get ours at Whole Foods Market. Bonus – they can also double as {messy} teethers!
  6. Toy – these rings are easy to pack and by far Taylor’ favorite thing she owns!
  7. Bottle – Comotomo, the only bottle Taylor would take and one of the best for breastfed babes. There is an insulated pouch in the ToteSavvy insert for the bottle if you’re packin’ breast milk or pre-mixed formula.
  8. Book – miniature books like this classic are perfect for stashing in diaper bags AND for entertaining baby hands/minds.
  9. Disposable Bags – I have these Munchkin bags and dispensers in my diaper bag, daycare bag and car kit (click on the links to find out exactly what I pack in those bags!).
  10. 2-3 spare diapers
  11. Wipes – I buy this bulk box of travel packs (16 packs of 18 wipes each) that fit into the Tote Savvy as well as my diaper clutch.
  12. Solid Food – Kiinde squeeze pouch with the spoon attachment (I usually pack applesauce, but you can make tons of other homemade purees as I show in this post or buy your own to fill in the pouch when you’re on the go with your babe.)
  13. Burp cloth – I use these cloth diapers 
  14. Sunglasses – for Mom (similar, AND on sale!) and Baby (aren’t these hysterical!?)
  15. Miscellaneous stuff for mom –
    1. gum
    2. a pen
    3. hair tie/s – you don’t want to be caught unable to throw up a solid mom bun!
    4. hand lotion
    5. mini natural hand-sanitizer – I have theses stashed all over the place!
    6. chapstick
    7. lipgloss/lipstick – my favorite gloss ever is Laura Mercier, in Coral Reef or Nude Rose.
  16. Last but not least, the item that makes it all so stylishly possible…my ToteSavvy Mini which, by the way, also includes a changing pad which you can see rolled up on the right below:img_7346
  17. Not pictured – iPhone (because I was taking a picture with it, duh.)
  18. Also not pictured – a snack for mama (because I was out of my favorite protein bars which I’ve since remedied.)
  19. Pictured below – In December, 2016 Dr. Brown’s sent me these all natural pacifier and bottle wipes and nose and face wipes which I now carry in my diaper bag, which come in incredibly handy when we go out to eat and she inevitably has a messy face to clean up and/or drops pacis, toys, bottles, etc. on the ground:

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20. Pictured below – The Mommy Hook which is perfect for hanging a purse, diaper bag and shopping bags:

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog post.

Please enjoy using a 20% off Discount Code: FALLSTYLE to purchase your own insert from Tote Savvy at Lifeinplaycompany.com and turn your purse into an {un} Diaper Bag. Thank you, Tote Savvy!

xo, Ashley (1)

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