Baby gear for the second kid

Everyone knows that babies these days seem to require a lot of “stuff.” At least that’s what the baby retailers tell us. Wipe warmers, anyone? Sleep positioners? 35 different baby carriers? Designer duds for your newborn?

Right. Much of it is probably unnecessary, but after going through this mommyhood business once, I know there are some things we just can’t live without (…unless we never plan to leave the house).

I was lucky to be gifted a lot of our baby gear and necessities having had two wonderful baby showers when pregnant with Charlotte. And I took care to choose gender neutral everything so that I could use it all again when the time came. It has been really nice not feeling like I need much of anything in order to be ready to welcome Baby D2 this summer. (In other words, just get this baby out of my abdomen and into my arms already, k?) That said, though, it has been fun putting together my little second baby wish list. Picking out just a handful of items that we’ll need and/or want is a lot less overwhelming that that first baby registry I created four years ago (what? 4 years already? sob.).  This is one thing I’ve loved about being pregnant for the second time.

Here is our little list of items we will be purchasing for the new babe:

The Needs


1. Diono Radian RXT convertible car seat. This will go to Charlotte and her current Britax will be used for BD2. I like this not only for its top safety rating and steel frame, but also for its versatile positioning options and ability to fold up for travel. ( <– I suppose we’ll need to get around to flying somewhere first for that to really matter, though! :) )  [image via]

2. Philips Avent DECT Baby Monitor with Temperature Sensor. There’s nothing super fancy about this monitor except for the temperature sensor, but I choose it mainly because it had good reviews. Our last monitor conked out on us, so this time I want one that will last more than a year. Our next house could be more than a single story and have thicker walls, so we probably won’t be able to rely solely upon our good ol’ ears after we move. A lot of people choose the video cameras and motion sensored monitors, but I think both of those would probably make me crazy. Plus, when my kid is a asleep, I’d rather be watching some trashy TV show than a video of him or her sleeping for an hour. ha. [image via]

3. Bob Motion stroller in navy. Gosh, I covet this thing. Our last stroller (this one), has served us well as the only stroller we’ve owned since Charlotte’s birth, but it’s not going to last us through another child. The wheels are starting to bow inward and wear down, and there’s just not enough room underneath to carry enough gear for two kids. I’ve researched a lot of strollers, and I want this Bob mainly because of its large inflatable wheels. No more tipping forward over sidewalk bumps (yep, that’s happened.). No more worn down rubber. It’s expensive, yes, but I think it will be a lasting investment. [image via]


 4. Giggle Better Basics Fitted Striped Crib Sheet. Organic cotton, classic stripes, cute color options. I was hoping our fitted sheets for Charlotte would last through multiple children, but the elastic has worn out so they aren’t quite so “fitted” anymore. Oh well. Minor expense. And it is kind of fun to have a new look for the crib! [image via]

5. The Milk Saver by Milkies. I know, a little strange. But as a working mom who has to pump (ugh, what a chore), I’d like to try saving all the milk I can so hopefully I can do it less! Laziness for the win!  [image via]

6. Diaper Rite Bamboo Flat Sheets. We used cloth diapers for about nine months with Charlotte and plan to use them again for BD2. This time, however, since we have all the diapers already, we can start earlier and hopefully use them longer. I’d like to try some pre-folds while s/he is tiny, and these bamboo diapers can also be inserted into the pocket diapers we already own. 

The Wants (the fun stuff I don’t need but enjoy adding to my pinterest boards)


1. Olive and Vince Bandana Bibs. Okay, I will buy these. When Charlotte went through her drooly stage from age 2 to about 6 months, I remember feeling a little bummed that I had to cover up her cute outfits with stupid bibs every day. These bandanas backed with absorbent bamboo fleece are so freaking adorable I would wear them. (Well, you know.) I die over all the cute patterns. What did people do before Etsy, by the way? [image via]

2. Bird Egg Gathering watercolor print. This “want” is inspired by Charlotte and her nature/animal loving. It’s just cute and pretty, and I’d hang it on the wall. Again, with the above Etsy question. [image via]

3. Stokke Tripp Trapp chair. In other words, the coolest chair in the universe. I’ve wanted one of these for Charlotte for a long time, but they are way expensive. This chair will probably stay on my wish list forever (because we’ll never actually buy it). Who knows though; Santa Claus could pull through one year. [image via]

4. Blooming Baby Bath. Again, we probably won’t buy this, even though every time I see a picture of a chubby baby bathing in this adorable, soft flower my ovaries explode. Chris thinks it’s stupid and unnecessary. Whatever, Husband. It’s a soft bath shaped like a sunflower! [image via]

Well, that was fun. I’m growing more excited (and massive) by the minute! What extra/additional gear did you purchase for your second child? Any recommendations? 


I’ve blogged so little this year that I’ve put off sharing something huge….



Our family is growing! 


We are thrilled to be adding our second child to the family in….wait for it….JUNE! (Or July. You know how due dates are.) As of yesterday, I’m already into the third trimester! 

We decided to wait until the birth to find out the baby’s sex, unlike last time when pregnant with Charlotte. With her, there was no question that I would find out, but this time, I just didn’t feel that sense of urgency. This pregnancy is flying by, and I figured it would be fun to wait this time around. We don’t plan on this being our last baby, but you never know. If so, we’ll have experienced both ways of finding out. :)

This pregnancy hasn’t felt as easy-breezy as my first. Luckily, I never had the morning sickness with either pregnancy, but since you grow so much quicker the second time, I’ve felt the discomforts of pregnancy earlier. However, it’s just simple back and abdominal discomfort, so I know I can’t complain much! Mainly I’ve been bothered by my annoying skin since December, but I can’t blame the baby on that! 

Charlotte is also ecstatic about her new baby brother or sister. Before I got pregnant, she started getting curious about babies so we explained to her how she grew in my stomach and blah blah blah. She took to that information immediately and loved talking to me about it. Pretty much all September, she would hug me and exclaim, “I was a baby, I was in your tummy, I was born!” It was basically the most adorable thing ever. (Like I’ve never said that before.)

So when we shared the happy news with Charlotte, she knew what I was talking about and has loved discussing it with me, talking to the baby, and checking out how much I’ve grown. Right now she thinks she is getting a baby sister, but we’ll see! Here are some more pics from the 20 week ultrasound. I am going to a different hospital this time around, where they gave me tons of 3D images and a video to take home. Any guesses as to whether Baby D2 is a boy or girl??


Hi Baby Love! We can’t wait to meet you, and I feel so lucky to be your mama already! 

In fewer than three months, I’m going to have two children…Ahhhh! (That’s me feeling both totally excited and absolutely terrified.) 

Take our poll for fun!

The Duck Call

Charlotte fans should watch this video from early last week:

It’s pretty self-explanatory, but here are a few notes.

  • Chris may be guilty of occasionally bribing Charlotte with “surprises” for doing things she doesn’t want to do. Then he has to come up with said surprise on the fly. This is what he came up with last time. It was, surprisingly (hardy har), a hit.
  • Charlotte and I saw a male and female duck on our walk back from the park a few days earlier. We discussed where their nest could be, which is what she’s talking about here.
  • Can you even get enough of this cutie???


Charlotte’s Big Girl Room

For over three years, Charlotte’s room has been her “nursery,” looking like this (though usually not as tidy :) ).


Her room was a labor of love with many homemade and crafted pieces, like her curtains, pretty much everything on her floating shelves, the lamp shade, and her wallpapered bookshelf.  We painted the room this happy green when we moved in and decided it was perfect for either a baby boy or girl when that time came. I still love this color (though it looks a little neon under our florescent lights at night). You can read more about her nursery and watch a video tour here


Even at three years old, she had been happily sleeping in her crib every night, and we had been happily letting her. 

But every child needs to grow up, and I suppose that includes Charlotte, too. So a couple of weeks ago, into a big bed she went! For the sake of money and space, we moved our futon from the guest room into Charlotte’s room, spruced it up with some new sheets and blankets, and tossed in the cute kid. She approves.


Without her crib, changing station (which she hasn’t needed in practically a year already!), and rocking chair, this room is no longer a nursery at all (*sob*). Here is Charlotte’s big girl room! 

Teal and orange bedding is from good old Target. And her horse decals were a birthday gift when she turned two.

Teal and orange bedding is from good old Target.

Charlotte was so excited to see the horse decals on the walls. They were a birthday gift when she turned two, and I had them sitting in her closet since then so she had totally forgotten all about them. I put them up when she was out with Daddy and Nana for lunch, so it was a cute surprise.

My childhood nightstand and dresser.

My childhood night stand and dresser.

The rocking corner turned reading and coloring corner.

The rocking corner turned reading and coloring corner.

The transition from her crib to bed went about as well as I could hope. For the first five or so nights she wanted us to lay with her and ended up staying awake very late because of that. Since then, though, everything’s been peachy! We realized that she still loves to rock with us for a couple of minutes, so if we do that, she’ll go right to bed for us. I don’t mind rocking her one bit. Even if her legs are practically hanging to the floor. 

Though a twin bed is the ideal size for this room, it’s been really nice having the full-sized futon for all of us to climb into when it’s time to read stories at night. Charlotte loves inviting us into to bed with her to read and snuggle. It’s been a sweet transition for us all.

I can’t wait to show you what we’re working on in the former guest room! 

Three year-old Charlish

I’m dusting off the cobwebs and hoping to get back into posting more regularly around here. It’s been awhile…do I remember how to do this? We’ll see!

At three, Charlotte has been giving us some pretty memorable quotes lately. I’ve been trying to remember to write down the good ones, and so far I’ve done okay with that. Here are a few of my “recent” Charlish favorites. And since it’s been since December since I’ve shared here, I’ll start with a Christmas song.

“He’s a plumber, Mr Grinch.”  You know that one, right? :) 

Daddy, discussing her chocolate milkshake: “Don’t drink it too fast or it will make your head hurt.”                                                                                                                  Charlotte: “It won’t make my head hurt! My head feels really happy!”

“You close your eyes and I will try to scare you………RRROOOAAARRR!” 

“My tummy is humbly. I’m hungry!”   She uses humbly So cute. 

“Daddy, you have eyelashes. You a girl!”

While making mac and cheese with Mama for dinner:                                                Katy: “And then we’ll add the cheese and butter!”                                                  Charlotte: “Don’t put cheese on my butt!”

Referring to the walleye fillets cooking on the George Foreman grill, Charlotte whispers: “Shhhhh, they’re sleeping!” 

While listening to some classical music in her room:                                         Daddy:”Do you want to learn about Bach or Beethoven or Dvorak when you’re older?”                                                                                                                                       Charlotte: “I want to learn about bubbles! Pop! Pop! Pop!”

And finally, after tumbling class last weekend: “Can I get some water from the drinking mountain??” 

Gosh, I love this stage! 

Guys like Charlotte

Charlotte has been saying so many random and hilarious things lately, I can hardly keep up. Before we leave town for some Christmas festivities, I’ll share this gem from just minutes ago.

Me: Charlotte, do you want some more water?

Charlotte: I want beer.

Me: How about some milk?

Charlotte: Guys don’t drink milk; they drink beer. Like me!


….And on that note, Merry Christmas! 


First time at the movie theater (it was good!)

Today, Charlotte saw her first movie in the theater – Frozen. We met up with the Pudwill family this morning for the 10:15 showing; it was only $5 a ticket. Perfection!

The movie was really cute. Charlotte and Madeline loved it, of course, but so did I. Disney does a really good job making kids movies entertaining for “big kids,” which is good because it’s not fun to pay money to sit through something stupid!

Charlotte loved the giant screen and looked around in awe when new sound effects came out of different speakers around the room. She was bouncing in her booster seat with excitement for the first twenty minutes there.  And according to Charlotte tonight, her favorite part of the movie was “the horse.” An interesting answer considering the horse was in the movie for about a single minute. :) But she also really loved the reindeer/moose named Sven. See, Sven is really supposed to be reindeer, but no amount of explaining was convincing enough for Charlotte. She is certain Sven is actually a moose because of his big antlers. She’s a know-it-all.  (just like her parents)

After the movie we walked through the rest of the mall and met up with Santa! This little mall near our house has like four stores in it, so we could just stroll right up into Santa’s lap without even worrying about waiting in line. I honestly had no idea if Charlotte would like the idea of getting into his lap (or even talking to him)….



But she did! Santa reached out for her and she reached back. And then she told him she wanted a car for Christmas. (Huh? That’s the first we’ve heard of this. She must have been looking at the collection of robotic cars kids can sit in clustered just a few feet away from Santa’s station.) We got a few decent pictures, but the photographer working there got the best shots. I have the information to look at and order them online, and I am actually so tempted despite the ridiculous prices.

Afterward we had lunch at a sushi restaurant across the street where both little girls devoured their chicken teriyaki, miso soup, and california rolls. How lucky are we that we don’t have to always order chicken tenders every time we go out???

I ate my weight in sushi. It was fantastic.

Before we left we stopped into Petland next door, but it stunk so bad in there we only stayed for a few minutes. Good story, huh? I’ll tell it again later.

I felt really productive having had all that fun before 2:30 on Saturday afternoon. Charlotte napped, then I did, then Chris did. I finished a book, and now I’m about to start a new one. I’d call that a darn good day!

Birthday Party and 20 Questions

Here are a few pictures from Charlotte’s party yesterday at our house. It was a small, simple gathering with only about ten guests. There was nothing extravagant or special about this party except for the company, which was actually really nice. We bought the cake, we bought the food, and the only decorating I did was writing Happy Birthday on our kitchen chalkboard. 


The highlight of the afternoon for Charlotte was obviously opening the gifts (and then immediately playing with them).



We picked this up at HyVee that afternoon. It was originally decorated with pink high heels.

We picked this up at HyVee that afternoon. It was originally decorated with pink high heels.

Charlotte loves high heel cake.

Charlotte loves high heel cake.

The cake-devouring aftermath:

Cake in the hair, don't care.

Cake in the hair, don’t care.

This Breyer stable set from Mimi was the piece de resistance of the afternoon. Charlotte’s playing with it right now as I’m typing. Mimi, we missed having you here this year! :( 


Charlotte and Madeline had a great time playing. And they actually played together some, which is practically a first after all this time as friends. Madeline helped Charlotte open her presents, too!


Thanks to everyone who was able to make it to Charlotte’s party yesterday and being a part of these already-cherished memories! Charlotte is lucky to have family who will drive a few hours to spend her birthday with her! (And thanks to Amy for some of these pictures I stole!) 

This year I am starting a new birthday tradition that I hope to continue for many birthdays to come. I saw this idea about a year ago on Pinterest (from this blog), and just knew I’d want to try it with Charlotte. Each year I’ll ask her the same twenty questions, write down her answers, and compile them into some sort of book for her to look through when she’s older. It will be fun to see which responses change and which stay the same.

This year, she understood all of the questions, but some of her answers are a little strange and not true. For example, her favorite song is not “Lalaloopsie.”  That’s a show that she’s seen but once months ago. I asked her the question a few times though and this is the answer she kept giving me. Ha.  Ultimately, I think it’s most fun just to hear what she says, regardless of whether these are really all her true favorite things.

  • 1. What is your favorite color?   Orange
  • 2. What is your favorite toy?    Mama neigh-neigh
  • 3. What is your favorite fruit?    Grapes
  • 4. What is your favorite tv show?   Horseland  (She actually never watches this dumb show anymore! yay!) 
  • 5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch?   Cookies
  • 6. What is your favorite outfit?    Princess dress  (Ha, yeah right!)
  • 7. What is your favorite game?   Hide and seek  (TRUE x 100)
  • 8. What is your favorite snack?   Fruit 
  • 9. What is your favorite animal?   Horsie
  • 10. What is your favorite song?   Lalaloopsie
  • 11. What is your favorite book?   The dinosaur book  (Which one, Charlotte? You have about 50!) 
  • 12. Who is your best friend?    Madeline
  • 13. What is your favorite cereal?    Oats  (??)
  • 14. What is your favorite thing to do outside?   Play tractors  
  • 15. What is your favorite drink?   Milk
  • 16. What is your favorite holiday?    Christmas
  • 17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night?   Neigh-neighs, dinosaurs, pink blankie
  • 18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?    Spinach and eggs
  • 19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday?   Spaghetti 
  • 20. What do you want to be when you grow up?   A teacher  (Awww.)


A few other cute things about Charlotte as a just-turned-three-year-old: 

She loves dip. Guacamole, mustard, catsup, ranch dips, humus, you name it. We pretty much always have humus in our fridge, so Charlotte eats that a lot. She calls it Thomas. <3

If you’ve spent some time with Charlotte in the last three or four months, you’ve probably seen this face. We call it her one-sided pout. It’s her whine/pout face, and it always makes us laugh. 




“What that is?” A simple little mistake that I just love.


Okay, well it looks like I covered all my blogging for the month! hehe. Four times in a week – I haven’t blogged this much in ages it seems! I wouldn’t get used to it. :) 




Where’s Charlotte

I forgot to share these pictures from the end of October. They were taken when she was sick and snuggling on the couch while watching a movie on my laptop. 

We call this series “Where’s Charlotte?” 


Oh Charlotte, where aaaarrrre you???

Oh Charlotte, where aaaarrrre you???

She's got her eye on the movie.   Yes, only one of them.

She’s got her eye on the movie. Yes, only one of them.







3 years old


Another year has flown by and today Charlotte Mary turned 3 years old! THREE YEARS OLD?!?

Chris and I couldn’t be more proud of our darling girl. Each day she amazes us – her spunk, her curiosity, her imagination, her independence, her sweet little laugh. It’s hard to believe that three years ago we had no idea who or what she’d be like, and now we have the most perfect picture. 


Happiest birthday to the little girl who has has filled our home with love and laughter and promise. Happiest birthday to the little girl who made us a Family.

We love you, Charlotte!