nothing beats mornings.
i've always always been a late night person, and really still am if i can keep my eyes open. the house is quiet + i'm alone to do whatever i please, like eat a double scoop cone or write or read or clean... it's nice me time. but mornings are where it's really at now. coffee + the fireplace going, reheating the same coffee a couple times, kids waking up at their leisure, isla, lucy, abel, and always in that order. slow mornings at home with my crew are truly the best there is. we stay in jammies too long (if the kids aren't already dressing up), we do puzzles, we make breakfast, we play games, watch movies... the demands are minimal. i know one day mornings will change. maybe be hurried + full, getting people out the door to where they need to be, probably running late... so, i am seriously soaking up these slow + simple mornings, stock piling them away to remember when our season looks different. thank you jesus.

NYC in two parts || P A R T T W O

Chelsea Market, Upper West Side + Central Park... can't beat it.
I have so many favorites in NYC, but these may be near the tippety of that list! I'm still craving those little donuts from the doughnuttery at Chelsea Market.
^^^orwashers bagels in the Upper West Side, YUUUUM. one of our favorite stops from our trip!
^^^minutes before we passed josh + samson (lovetaza.com) in the streets... i mean WHAT?! of alllll the people and all the streets and all the times to be walking those streets, we see 2 of the people i would have geeked out over most?! boom. next time, it'll be the whole fam, i juuust know it.
Walking Central Park with Chris is all time. Really doing anything with Chris is all time... look at that skyline. Thanks for the best time husband! I love you so much!

NYC in two parts || P A R T O N E

Chris and I recently went on a vacation just the two of us... that's right, me and him in my very favorite city. We did everything & nothing, explored and explored until our feet were ready to fall off, and seriously had the very best time together. 

We had tickets to Live! With Kelly, which was a dream come true for me and all I hoped it'd be. That dang kelly ripa, darling as pie I tell ya!! See love letter HERE. We walked around Columbus Circle & Central Park & wherever the next 13 miles took us. This is the part where I was insistent upon us having Cider Donuts (because all the bloggers do it) & when we saw a sign that read "Hot, Fresh Cider Donuts" grabbed some... biggest bust of our trip, super soggy, super not hot or fresh. We laughed & most definitely made up for it at the Doughnuttery which you'll see in tomorrow's post! 
^^^only had to pump 6,000 a day while away from isla!
Christmas time in New York is everything you'd imagine. Bigger + more beautiful than anywhere else. The window displays are seriously serious... so awesome! & the tree at Rockefeller is giant + needs some ornaments if you ask me, five miles of lights is all Rockefeller?! ;)
New York has my heart. Time with Chris was wonderful, and hands free time for me was so needed. We are so thankful for Chris's sister's, for loving our littles while we were gone. It put our minds at ease knowing they were being well cared for and having fun, while we took this time for ourselves! Thank you, thank you, thank you!! We came back cups full and ready to dive back into life and the holidays with our little family. 

A Holiday Gift Guide for Littles!

'Tis the season for gift giving! 
I love putting together these gift guides for our littles. Last year's Christmas was so sweet, and so simple, ages three + one desired nothing but a big snoopy + some books... pie. I've really been trying to push the question "What would you like to GIVE?" this year with our kids, their answers vary + typically circle back to what they want to GET (abel) haha! But it is worth the try for sure. It's important to me to practice the act of giving, and especially them giving at a young age + being thoughtful about others. An idea to practice this is heading to the dollar store, giving them money in hand + letting them pick a few things for each other vs me buying it all and labeling it for them.  I think it'll be sweet. As far as my own shopping goes, Abel has been very clear about what he'd like, Isla needs next to nothing, and I have struggled harrrd with what to get Lucy! Over all though, they are pretty easy to please, so I think they'll be happy. Here's where we landed, hope it inspires some ideas for you and your own!

Buying toys is hard for me, most of the toys at our house have been gifted to us, and we are thankful for them. However, toys have proven to bore them pretty quickly, and so I try to be suuuper choosy when it comes to purchasing. Abel's one request this year was that pirate ship... fair enough. He's been all pirates for a year and a half now, so he will be thrilled. I am separating the characters into both of the older kid's stockings, to hopefully encourage playing together... i mean, you need the whole crew right?? stay tuned on that. Otherwise, he mostly needed some new clothes, he's getting good at puzzles, and I picked a few things that I knew he'd enjoy but not think to request. 

Two is so sweet... she has no requests. So for her I went mostly with pretend play, which she loves. Every morning she wakes up and immediately asks for her tights, so she can go to her "class"... it's so funny, she's not in any type of dance class + hasn't seen one, she just knows that her cousin goes + shows up to family dinner in tights, so CLASS! + she must go too! it's so precious, so i got her some pretty tutu skirts (HERE) + tights, and i also got isla and myself some, so we can use them for tea parties. 

Merry Christmas Isla! I've swooned over that bunny for at least a year now... it's the softest thing you will ever feel in your life, you're welcome. Also, shoes, a few clothing pieces, and jammies from our favorites, L'ovedbaby.
Books are a forever staple around here. We read at least three books every night as part of our bedtime routine + i love that, and hope it's something our kids will always enjoy + remember.
We are probably MOST excited for bunk beds... the kids bedrooms are little + going up is a better option than going out. They have talked about bunk beds for about a year now + so we are going to rearrange + surprise them on Christmas morning. I'm certain they are going to be over the moon. When Abel sees that red ship wheel on the wall he is gonna flip. I can't wait!


isla jane is 5 whole months old. i won't broken record it by telling you that i can't believe we are here, and that time is a rude + sneaky little thief + all of that... okay i did. but aren't you as stunned as i am? you'd think third time around it would get less surprising but that's a giant NO. she's alert + smiley + giggles, has a tiny tooth poking through + is FIVE MONTHS OLD!! which is basically 6, and i should just go ahead and start planning her first birthday party. seriously though, i feel like it was yesterday that i had her + abel held her for hours on end + she slept all the time + was easy to nurse one handed... but here we are 5 months later. she is still the very easiest part of every day + is still lighting our world over here. i mean, her and lucy are so stinkin' cute together, i can't even. 
parenting young children is hard work. like, constant hard work... but today isla's little tooth popped through, and abel asked a million questions while we all watched the BFG tonight, + i watched lucy bounce around the kitchen being silly with chris + thought to myself what a cute little two year old she is. my night ended with isla asleep on my chest, abel at my side + lucy in and out of my lap, and i couldn't help but cry + think what a beautiful, fleeting life i have, boatloads of work and all.
i love you little baby. happy 5 months. you're the third child of my dreammmms.

A L'oved Baby Christmas!

Matching Christmas jammies seriously make me so happy, I look forward to a new pair for the kids each year! When these showed up from L'oved Baby I was allllll happy dance!! Their goods are some of the very best quality out there, and always unlike anything you can get at a bigger retail store. We've already loved them well & I'm so excited to see these cute tired faces wearing them, come Christmas morning! The best time of the year is here guys! 
Head over to lovedbaby.com and snag yourself a pair or three!