my weekend in pictures.

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{Eloise went to daycare on Friday so I had the entire day to myself! I made the trek down to IKEA for a few things.}

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{On Saturday morning we hit up Greenlake since it was a scorcher – over 90 degrees! – & it was so hot! Can you tell by Eloise’s face?}

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{But we cooled off in the wading pool at Greenlake & then had a picnic lunch in the shade.}

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{These wooden stools from IKEA are so great. We keep them in the bathrooms for Eloise to wash her hands. I put one together during naptime with the drill – it went so quickly!}

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{After some work in the yard this morning, Eloise wanted to take her tricycle out for a quick ride before lunch. Every time she sees herself in her helmet she shouts “MOO! MOO!” It’s the best!}

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{I have been really good at getting to my Sunday afternoon Pure Barre class. A much-needed hour to myself to start the week off right.}

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{Aaron had Eloise dressed in her striped dress when I got home from Barre, so of course Eloise wanted us to match. I love this girl.}

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{David, Jodi, & their kids got back into town for the next few days & we finally got a picture of all the kids together! They are a fun bunch.}

We had a fun weekend & are gearing up for the last full week of August – what? How was your weekend?

M

my weekend in pictures.

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{Golden Gardens on Friday afternoon. It was super hot but so beautiful!}

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{I picked up a few pints of our favorite ice cream – Molly Moon’s – to celebrate David graduating with his MBA!}

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{We hit up Serious Biscuit this morning for brunch & it was amazing, as usual. We also got to see the women’s vault final which is honestly the first Olympic coverage I have seen. Go Simone!}

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{Ah, the Space Needle. We hung around Seattle Center after brunch, & David & crew went up to the observation deck while we headed home for naptime.}

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{Eloise loved this little rock area at the playground this morning. When you dropped rocks into the cages, they would hit these bell plates & make music.}

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{We wrapped up our dining adventures at Frelard Pizza Company for dinner. There was way too much pizza ordered, but it was really good & the play area for kids is fantastic!}

We had Aaron’s brother David & his family in town visiting this weekend & I did not take nearly enough pictures! Really, not one picture of all the kids. There were lots of city adventures to be had & lots of good times. It was so, so hot though… is it fall yet?

How was your weekend?

M

eloise’s second birthday party.

As I mentioned earlier in the week, Eloise’s second birthday party had a watermelon theme. It seemed like such a perfect (& easy) theme for an August birthday party, & Pinterest had many, many ideas. I limited myself to just a few & then let myself relax about the fact that any party theme or décor was entirely for me (& not for Eloise)!

I found these adorable watermelon cards on Paperless Post which were perfect & made me feel better about not designing one & mailing it out (although you know how much I LOVE snail mail!). Plus, Paperless Post is awesome because it tracks all the RSVPs for the event & you can send out reminders & message with guests – it’s awesome & a lot of the cards are free!

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This balloon garland was about the extent of the décor (minus one big helium watermelon balloon) which was based loosely on this picture from Pinterest. At the last minute I decided not to add the seeds on the pink balloons because I knew that the perfectionist in me would never be satisfied! But I really ended up liking the simple-ness of the garland in the end.

At sort of the last minute I decided to make Eloise a cake. I was originally going to just do a full watermelon & fruit cake with maybe a little yogurt frosting (like this) but it seemed a little too wedding for a toddler’s birthday party. So I made her a few sugar-free, butter-free, oil-free cupcakes using this recipe, but used frozen strawberries instead of blueberries for the frosting. And since I didn’t have any small cake pans, I just made one batch of 7 cupcakes & stacked two of them for E’s cake. Eloise seemed to enjoy her cake (which tasted like a muffin) & the frosting much more this year than last year.

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I made these impossibly cute watermelon rice krispy treats which were super easy & super yummy. I knew as soon as I made them that I should have made at least two more batches & I was right – everyone loved them!

And here are pictures of Eloise with her cake, blowing out the candles, & enjoying her birthday treat!

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Happy Second Birthday Eloise! And a HUGE thank you to Jess who grabbed the camera to take all of these pictures! M

eloise {month twenty-four // two years}

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{lion: jellycat via Nordstrom // dress:  Tucker and Tate via Nordstrom // hat: DIY from last year’s birthday // Grovia Magic Stick*}

*this is the only thing other than my phone that would make her sit still for the picture…

{month twenty-four} How has it been a year since this update?! Eloise turns TWO today & it’s blowing my mind. In some respects it feels like she has been two for the past few months since her growth & development has really taken off, but in others, it seems like she is just my tiny, little baby. This Babble article is a really good summary of what this second birthday is like (minus having the second child) which is so, so different than that first birthday! (I cried so much reading this, so be prepared!)

Eloise continues to talk up a storm these days & is really into the alphabet & counting (in all languages!). When she is playing or is in the car, you will hear her chatting with herself or her toys. It’s the cutest! And so much of what she hears from me (her memory is insane) I hear her talk about. Like when we are going up or down the stairs, I hear her frequently say “careful” which is exactly what I say to her! Now I am super conscious about what I tell her & the tone I use since it is obviously impactful! And just in the past few weeks, Eloise has really started using sentences which makes her seems SO old! I knew it was right around the corner, but I swear we just woke up one morning & she was saying three to five word sentences (that actually make sense!).

Eloise is very polite, saying “please” and “thank you” without prompting (most of the time), and she also says “bless you” if she hears someone sneeze. Seriously this kid. She has always been pretty empathetic towards others & is especially that way if me, or Aaron, or one of her friends is sad or hurt. She is the first one in line to give you a hug or kiss to brighten your day! She has the sweetest little soul.

Meal times are still going well as Eloise has maintained an appetite for such a broad range of foods (please don’t let this jinx that…) and we continue to introduce all different types & flavors of food. The exception is sugar. We really haven’t introduced any type of refined sugar because not only does Eloise LOVE fruit so she gets natural sugars, but there is absolutely no nutritional value in refined sugar! So, we’ve decided to hold off a bit longer on introducing any added sugars, desserts, or ice cream for at least another few months. We never want Eloise to feel like she can’t eat dessert or birthday cake with friends, but since she has no idea what it is yet, we are taking advantage!

As I mentioned above (sort of) Eloise loves to go up and down the stairs. And while she doesn’t go up and down them all day (I love that you can’t see them from our living room or kitchen!) she does appreciate a good stair climb. Over the past month or two, Eloise has opted to climb up and down facing forward, rather than crawling which is the way she learned. Much to my dismay, she loves to climb the stairs like a big kid. The handrailing is still a bit too high for her, but she is good about holding someone’s hand while she climbs up or down. It still makes my heart race to see her do it, but she is a pretty good little stair climber!

This past week I finally introduced TV to Eloise. She had a vague idea of it since we will turn the TV on during football season & she will see it while we are at a restaurant or occasionally while we are visiting someone else, but her TV screen time was basically nil. We were pretty firm about waiting until she was two to do any type of screen time & I think we were really successful in that & I am glad that we waited. Now Eloise gets one 20 minute episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood in the afternoon which is normally watched while I start dinner. The first two times we watched the show & I tried to turn it off, she completely lost it & had a meltdown. But before I started the show on the third day, I reminded her that we got to watch one show & then we would be all done, and after the end credits came on, we said “good-bye Daniel Tiger” & I turned off the TV & there were no tears! Now Eloise will tell me throughout the day that she gets one show.

Along with the TV thing, we have found that generally if we talk Eloise thru what her expectations should be for something, things go much more smoothly & we can prevent meltdowns. Like with bedtime, we have the same routine which is done in basically the same order every night. Once we finish one thing, we ask Eloise what comes next & she will answer & start to do it. This prevents frustration for her (& for us) & gives her some control of what’s going on; and at bedtime especially it prevents her from doing anything & everything to delay actually going to bed!

Eloise is such a joyful child & it has been such a privilege to watch her grow-up these past two years. And while we are beginning into the “terrible twos” (which is actually a phrase that I loathe & really try not to use!) I know that these coming months & years will be the best! I spend more time with Eloise than anyone else & she is the best companion.

{weight} 30-ish pounds.

{hair} dark (reddish) brown.

{teeth} 12 teeth plus four molars.

{eyes} dark brown.

{clothes}  18 to 24 months, 2T, and some 3T.

{diapers} full-time cloth {bum genius pocket, & elemental and grovia hybrid with organic soaker pads} & honest company size 5 diapers at night with a bum genius diaper cover. **for about the past two weeks, however, we have been doing all honest disposables since I am SO tired of cleaning poopy diapers. I absolutely love cloth & will do it with any future child(ren) but until we start potty training at the end of the month, we are in disposables!**

{feeding} during the day, three meals, morning snack, & afternoon snack. sippy cup of milk with every meal. eloise is really starting to master using a small cup for water too, so we try to offer one with at least dinner & sometimes snack time.

{likes} coloring, yelling, Duplos, digging in the dirt, splashing, counting, chewing on her toothbrush, the mailman, any person outside on the sidewalk, bubbles, sidewalk chalk, coloring, buckles, jumping, watching out the front window (dogs, kids, trucks), books, mama & papa’s cell phone, toys that squeak or rattle, singing & music, dancing, Sadie, standing, FaceTime, bathtime, shoes, mama’s (diaper) bag, clapping, putting things inside a bag or box, taking lids off of things, talking, helping with anything & everything, when Papa comes home from work.

{dislikes} not being included, having something taken away from her, diaper changes, not eating when someone else is, being hungry, getting into the carseat, getting out of the carseat, having a poop in her diaper (& sitting).

{nicknames} Bug{s}, Love Bug, Baby Bug, E, Wheezy, Kiddo, Love, Bugaboo, Ellie or Elle.

Happy Twenty-Four Months Eloise! These have been the very best two years ever!

M

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my weekend in pictures.

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{Eloise helped me clean the windows & then wanted to do it again on her own!}

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{We spent most of the week & Saturday morning prepping for E’s birthday. I made a special flag for her which will hopefully make an appearance every birthday!}

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{The party had a watermelon theme but I forced myself to keep things simple & just enjoy the day!}

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{Eloise eating her “cake” after everyone sang Happy Birthday! She enjoyed it even though it doesn’t look like it in this picture. I will share more birthday pictures later in the week.}

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{Eloise & her crew of PEPS friends. All of these littles turn two this month!}

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{Post-party & after the birthday girl went to bed, we played a round of Fibbage. And guess who won? Yours truly!}

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{Eloise being a goof with a hummus beard!}

We had a busy weekend with Eloise’s birthday party on Saturday & recovering on Sunday. It was great to see so many friends & catch up (at least a little bit) with those we haven’t seen lately. Eloise already seems so much older in the past few days & I can hardly believe she will be TWO in just two days!

Sorry I have been a bit MIA from blogging and social media – I have apparently been enjoying my “summer break” unplugged. It’s sort of been awesome though. I will be back at it soon!

How was your weekend?

M

my weekend in pictures.

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{Eloise tried her first artichoke & it was a success!}

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{Date night to a whisky bar to see an old friend!}

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{Eloise saw Grandpa stretching & wanted to join in on the fun!}

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{After a quick – & unsuccessful – stop at the Nordy’s Anni Sale, we stopped by the Lego store & Eloise got to play for a bit.}

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{Eloise joined Grammie in namaste at the end of a yoga session.}

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{Four adults in the house after bedtime always means Catan!}

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{Eloise, Aaron, Grammie, & Grandpa watching the boats at the Ballard Locks.}

Grammie & Grandpa were visiting from out of town, so it was such a fun treat to have them here. We did a few touristy things like Pike Place Market & the Ballard Locks, but lots of projects & things got done around the house too – thanks!

How was your weekend?

M

my weekend in pictures.

 

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{Eloise has been super into tea parties lately and it is the cutest thing ever!}

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{We spent some time enjoying the afternoon shade & some chalk while we waited for Papa to come home on Friday.}

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{After running a few errands on Saturday afternoon, we hit up Gas Works Park for a few minutes. Eloise had never seen the view of the skyline from the park, so that was a must! It was such a pretty day to watch the boats on the lake, the planes taking off & landing, & all of the people at the park.}

After the park we met Ben & Sarah for a drink at Miir in Fremont. And there was this insanely adorable puppy outside. These photos are amazing!

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{Seriously, puppies & toddlers!}

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{We tried a new food truck for dinner on Saturday since we were all starving and it was too late to cook. An interesting name, but we will be back for the potstickers & curry!}

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{Saturday ended up being really hot, so I ran out to Safeway on a popsicle run, Fudgsicles specifically. And then we watched a few episode of Bloodline. It’s a little slow but I know it’s going to get good!}

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{Eloise wanted to wear the Ergo this morning with her baby doll Stella and then pretty much wanted to wear it all day long, even though it is SO big on her! I know they make Ergos for little kids & I need to find one for her. She was so sweet with her baby, rocking & patting & shushing & making sure she had her paci. It is amazing what she has learned from watching Aaron & me!}

We had a pretty low-key weekend which explains why there aren’t too many pictures to share. Gearing up for an eventful end of July!

How was your weekend?

M