Monday, June 12, 2017

{in the kitchen} baby's first foods

hello there!

some exciting stuff around here... our little one is trying out some tasty {solid} morsels!

we've been on our breastfeeding journey and starting around 5 months our guy showed so much interest in what was going on at the dinner table... since then he has tried a few bites too {did i mention my baby is 8 months old?!}!

we chose to feed our little j soft real foods that are cut in ways to be easily held. or can be served up on a spoon for him to feed himself. at the beginning - when he was six months old - his daily meal(s) were more about being at the family table and touching real food and less about what nutrients made it into his body. we were still breastfeeding around the clock and family dinner was when we chose to have his meal type experience. my husband and i have always been excited about being at the table as a family, talking and sharing about what happened in our days. this is why we've decided to make it j's social solid foods eating time.

now that we are two months in our guy is a pro and LOVES to eat! sometimes we serve up purees while most of the time we are making sure our foods are provided to him in safe ways to eat {soft, sometimes mashed, often on a spoon} he chats with us and his crazy babbles {plus the few words he says basically daily - mama, dada, and "Ebba" for our dog Etta}




how we knew we were ready...

+we were given the okay by our doctor - due to his head control and subsiding "tongue thrust" our pediatrician shared that she was more than comfortable with him starting to experience some foods. in fact, she was ready before we were! it was so nice to have that go-ahead. and it got this mama dreaming about messy hands and gummy sweet potato smiles!

+he couldn't help himself when mom and pop were eating - grabbing at all the things, staring at whatever was going in our mouths, we knew his interest was there.

+we researched - after throughly reading about 'baby led weaning' we found that we liked the real food, just keep it safe, eat what the family is type approach.

+we took baby steps - once we knew he was interested we had a few weeks where during dinner time he would sit in his high chair (this kid's core strength is unreal) and would touch and play with a little bowl, spoon and cup while we ate dinner and all talked together. he LOVED it from the first meal so we thought he would attend to food once we felt more prepared to start our route to solid foods.


what is working well for us...

+cutting up foods so he can hold it

+foods he likes - he can go with bananas in all the foods! but we also eat avocado, peas, sweet potato, pumpkin, prunes, blueberries, papaya and more...

+doing the 4 day rule - only trying one new food every 4 days or so. this way if a food allergy is present it will hopefully surface prior to introducing the next new food and we will know that we need to be careful around whatever food he ate just before symptoms arrived.

+peanut butter - check with your pediatrician on this one, but ours suggested moving forward with the current thinking that younger babies should try peanut butter (watered down, so no choking hazard); we waited until he had tried many solids and had no allergic reactions to anything.

+having our pup, Etta, take care of the dirty work - our little babe and pup are just such good friends already. and now our girl loves this baby boy even more because of all the snacks she sneaks from the floor under his spot at the table.

any mamas have real food/baby led weaning tips to share? or are you interested and want to learn more? check out this Real Food Mamas Podcast - Episode #49: BLW in the Kitchen

have a good one!!

Monday, June 5, 2017

feels like summer

summer break has begun and i am popping in for a quick hello. 

so far i am enjoying lots of extra time with my guys- grilling, shade sitting and some special to do's here and there. 

thankfully it just got started. 

here's to a beautiful morning for all!

Monday, May 1, 2017

hello, may.

good morning friends!

just popping in to send a happy springy greeting! i've decided with all the excitement of our final month of the school year that i'll take a few weeks away from this space. you know, balance...



much love + see you in june! 

Monday, April 24, 2017

winter + trying out our freezer-saved chicken eggs


this past fall i mentioned that i was saving up some of our fresh eggs for the winter. our chicken flock lays all summer, spring and fall. every so often when we have a stretch of lovely (spring-ish) winter days they will lay a couple of surprise eggs for us. it keeps us on our toes!

i'm happy to say that thru this past winter we've only purchased 3 dozen eggs! and it wasn't because i didn't save enough... well, let me explain. 

in the summer i was doing a major food prep for our little one's arrival, preserving some produce and considering how to put up some eggs. {read more about that with Fresh Eggs Daily} i made lots of dishes to freeze that contained eggs, but i also decided to try out freezing actual eggs.

by using a silicone baking mold i would freeze the eggs {as per instructed by Fresh Eggs Daily!} pop them out and then save them in freezer bags... 

our most used eggs were the whisked eggs that could be thawed and put into recipes. we didn't seem to use the eggs that were prepared for frying - just not quite right for us. {hence why we splurged and purchased the 3 dozen eggs - all for various brunches at home!} i think this upcoming summer i will freeze whisked eggs, freeze fewer mini breakfast bakes and more baked goods in order to save up some of our eggs. that seems to be what works best for our taste buds and general kitchen routine. 

do you have any favorite high protein -as in several eggs- baked good recipes to share? tell me in the comments!




Monday, April 17, 2017

NOURISH::LOVE + SELF CARE

hey there loves!

i've been thinking a lot about nourish {my word for the year} and self care. i'm learning about what it looks like for me to give myself some permission to pause, to take what i need.

what fills me up? right now i crave time with my little family in a low scheduled sort of way. a haircut? yes, i'm in dire need but the morning my husband said "go. go to Target and then run to the salon, we will be here when you get back." i was exhausted and hadn't slept well for several nights- an extra 30 minutes of sleep and an uninterrupted breakfast was all i wanted. if i sat for a haircut i would surely nod off and walking the dollar spot was the last thing i thought would make me feel rested that particular morning.

however i've found a few things that seem to really be worth my efforts right now...

i'm investing an evening a week to starting a yoga practice at a studio. this has immensely helped my muscles open up and i'm gaining some flexibility in the poses i practice at home during the rest of the week. honestly, just what i needed.

and i'm trying to phrase the little bits of time when i'm working on our home in a way that fills me up. it is true, some nights when my husband asks how he can help - all i want is a clean floor and an empty sink. i was very inspired by this essay and i'm using a similar thought while tidying up our home.

and of course - podcasts! - i took some time away from listening to the talking because i needed the quiet, but now i'm up for a little chat here and there while doing dishes, laundry or cleaning the kitchen. my little j loves music but doesn't seem to mind hearing talking voices when he plays and i start to make dinner.

what do you do for self care? how do you nourish yourself to stay well for your families?

need some inspiration? try out...

these words from jennifer, katie, stephanie and aglaee.


happy new week!













Monday, April 10, 2017

mama is heading to work...

it's true. my maternity leave has flown by - a blink of an eye and our little guy is six months old and i'm off to the races. we're trying out the whole 'two working parents' idea to see if it works for our family. 




i have very much enjoyed having these important days with my first son. often just us two, discovering new things together. i'm so very lucky to have support from family as we attempt this transition. our little guy will stay home with Grammie or head to the home of our close friends so that i can teach for the last two months of school and j will be with loved ones that he knows well. 

so it is with a heavy, but excited heart {we can be both at once, yes?} i'm off to work and will give my little boy the opportunity to have some adventures without me. 


i'm going to miss him like crazy. good thing summer break is rapidly approaching. 



Monday, March 27, 2017

big picture dreamin'

hey there!

so around here we've been doing some big time dreaming... thinking about our future and what that looks like. doing all our dreaming and then committing to some good ol' fashion work has always been the way that my guy and i go about things. the dreaming stage is a current fave. it is easy to do when a fresh start to a new month is only days away {spring too!} and we have our little boy in the house that gives us so much material to dream about.




how do you go about moving your dreams to real life achievements? 

i'm thinking and planning out a general weekly rhythm to dedicate times for some of the current ambitions we have {i.e. my husband's consulting work, yoga classes i'd like to attend and family hikes are already on the calendar}... maybe things will fall into place if our routine supports our big dreams.


i'm also loving some elise joy podcasts - she always pumps me up to get a goal in motion and i found this read from code of living super inspiring.

here's to a happy + productive week!



Monday, March 20, 2017

around these parts {+ my unscheduled break}

hey friends!

i've been missing my time around here. but spending my time doing all good things. here's what i've been getting into...

+lots of family time - daily life with my little guy in tow has been so great lately. lots of extended family visits, working on some homestead projects while keeping the baby entertained and even going outside {because end of winter in Ohio}

+getting active in issues that matter - not planning to get too political on this blog, but a lot of my screen time has been dedicated to researching bigger issues and supporting those who have less of a voice than i do.

+discovering an interest in yoga - i've always wanted to start a practice of yoga, doing a few DVDs and such, but recently i've been attending classes to learn poses and even took little j out for a Momma + Baby series! so fun! it was a good excuse to get out of the house and meet a few other moms in my area.




i hope you all are doing great and thanks for checking on me! happy start to the week!


Monday, February 13, 2017

Homesteading Goals for 2017

good morning there!

i was a bit inspired by this post from Homestead Honey and it made me want to consider some solid, obtainable goals for this year on our homestead...

first off, in 2016 we put in the start of our raised bed garden, set up a safe composting system, took care of our chickens {their home + eggs}, grew seedlings, and jarred up some goodness to save! i would file it as a successful year - as i also spent all of 2016 growing our first child!

this year {2017!!} I would like to work on these few obtainable goals...
+ grow produce in 2 {if not 3!!} of our raised beds
+ work on our general menu plan for the family so that two dinners a week are local, seasonal meals {right now we have one night a week as our "in season" night}
+ work on our general menu plan for the family so that either our main breakfast for the week, or our main lunch for the week are local, seasonal meals.
+ research raising our own meat and ways to extend our growing season at our home
+ consider renewable energy resources that might work for our home

how exciting! these goals definitely feel inline with my word of the year - "nourish" too... i think i feel some momentum gathering!
happy monday, friends.



Monday, February 6, 2017

{mama hood mondays} post partum meal prep reflection

you may remember that before our little guy was born i did a mega food prep. it has been very helpful for us in our beginning months of parenthood to have many meals in the freezer to pull out for dinner. and oh my, do i eat snacks during the day! i thought a little reflection might shine light on a few more postpartum meal prep tips and help incase i ever take on such work again {see my list of tips from while i was in the thick of it:: click here}

A few observations...

+ we really do prefer freshly made eggs... as it was summer time and our ladies were laying it down i made loads of mini egg bakes to freeze. these were the last things we are still eating. i don't think it is a problem, but maybe i wouldn't make so many next time.

+ make fewer gluten filled snacks... pre-pregnancy i wrestled with a gluten intolerance. breads, cookies, cakes, pizza all mess with my head and digestion. i would be able to get away with eating a little gluten treat maybe like once a week with very little problem. during pregnancy i could eat all the gluten filled gloriousness that i wanted - and i did!! this led me to believe that i could probably get away with it during breast feeding. this was only true for a couple weeks. now i am finding no gluten to be my best plan even though breastfeeding is going on.

+ make more 'whole 30 compliant' meals for the freezer... the first few weeks after delivery we had such wonderful people bringing us dinners and treats and snacks! it was beyond helpful! {for a few days after i had the baby i was either breastfeeding, pumping, sleeping, eating or exhausted. all of this meant that the cooking, house cleaning and pet care all fell to my husband who was getting less sleep than i was.} once i was out of bed and loved ones stopped bringing {basically} daily meals my husband wanted very nutrient dense food. he was depleted and many of the meals i had made were a little more comfort based than he was craving.

+ fully cook a few more meals... many of my meal prep plans included thawing a ziploc bag of a dinner for the crockpot. this required us to remember the night before to pull out a dinner. sometimes we remembered - but often we did not. having a few more "just reheat" types meal preps would have served us well.

+ i really liked these blueberry oat crumble bars but they didn't thaw as well as i would have liked. i probably would make them again, but maybe once i was back on my feet and not for the freezer. it is a very simple recipe and would work well for a naptime baking if you had the energy {they weren't listed as a freezer ready bar, i just tried it}

+ our favorites {linked to original source}:

sweet potato chili
beef roast and carrots {i will add more carrots the next time i make it}
italian sausage soup
chicken fajitas
lunch lady bars


i like the idea of a big meal prep during a busy season. or i'm considering it as a way to save more of our homegrown produce this summer... already portioned and used for a meal!

have a lovely week!

Monday, January 16, 2017

mama hood monday {the end of the fourth trimester}

hello there!

just feeling a bit sentimental today... our little j turned 3 months old recently and as i start to feel more like myself and see him grow in so many ways i'm stowing away the memories of that little nugget of a newborn that he was.

we have a bit of a rhythm to the day now. he eats every two and a half hours {somewhere a bouts} and is interested in a suggested nap about two and a half hours since he last awoke. he is tired for a long sleep around 9 o'clock at night so to avoid the overtired baby -that he will push himself to be- we start a calming bedtime ritual around 8:30 PM each night. we have noticed a true benefit of having him home at a certain time to enjoy some quiet family time and our simple bed routine {nurse on one side, diaper/massage/pajamas, stories, nurse the other side and sleep}. this is working for us right now and will be altered as needed.

our little j loves to see what is going on. he loves to be held and cuddled and he giggles like a wild baby when his daddy makes silly noises and tickles him. he likes to sit up in my lap and read books too.



what a honest treasure it is to see a baby grow! happy monday, all!

Monday, January 9, 2017

nourish in my 2017

this year i have a focus of 'nourish' to help me pursue my goals + passions.

in 2017 i will NOURISH


.: family :.

.: garden :.

.: home :.

.: health :.

.: family rituals + routines for simple living :.

.: family seasonal traditions :.






how about you, sitting on some pretty lofty 2017 goals?




Monday, January 2, 2017

{nourish} :: my word for 2017

happy new year, dear ones!

i hope there was plenty of joy in your holiday season - enough to carry you into the new year!

2016 was a year where "cultivate" was my focus. it was personally an exciting year too - a year of growth and welcoming our little one into the world!

in 2017 i've decided to continue with a specific word to help me see through goals and passions each day + season. 


i wanted a word that would inspire efforts, work, and thinking centered around...

caring for my home, family and self
being mindful of balance + health as we find ways that our family thrives
prioritizing growing foods + planning a seasonal menu with local foods to feed this family


2017 is a year for NOURISH


enjoy some slow as we start off this beautiful year! 
thanks for spending some of your precious time with me.
happy 2017!