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What’s not to love about a Sandbox

by Juliemara
06.3.13

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I’ll tell you what’s not to love about sandboxes, sand in shoes, that ends up in cribs, yuck! But a sand box is a great way to entertain a toddler, they can pour and fill and shovel and dump for probably close to an hour, then it’s usually nap time. I am a pretty forgetful person, sometime just rushing and forget to take step to make life a little easier. Like removing shoes before placing a sleeping baby in there crib for nap. Or making sure they are wearing open toe shoes when we go to a sandbox. Removing shoes before playing in the sandbox is an option, but it’s not one I’m a big fan of, because they don’t tend to stay put for long and putting shoes on and off on and off is not my idea of a good afternoon at the park. And when it’s chilly out open toes shoes are not the best option any way. Yes trying to figure out the exact right outfit for baby is a challenge, you don’t want them to be too warm or too cool, some things are ok to get dirty, some are not. It is definitely a learning process, you are going to make mistakes, but don’t worry your sweet baby will survive all the wardrobe errors you make, just try to not worry about it too much, do your best and get on with playing.

As a general rule I like knees to be covered, as much as possible, so jeans, leggings, even cropped leggings are my first choice for bottoms. And I prefer shoulders to be covered if we are going to be outside for a while. I love how little tanks look on the girls but I prefer a short sleeve or a cap sleeve in the sun. I’m big on layering pieces, not only is it an easy way to adjust to the changing temperatures throughout the day but little cardigans layered on are so cute!

The pastel cardigans the girls are wearing here are courtesy of Baby Beau & Belle. The sweaters are part of an exquisite line of special occasion wear for babies and toddlers. All of their dresses are embellished with vintage inspired lace. They have comfy but beautiful rompers for baby with bibs to match that I might shed a tear to see get dirty. But that’s what babies do, get dirty. You really should check this stuff out.20130603-103115.jpg20130603-104322.jpg20130603-104222.jpg20130603-104253.jpg

They have great baby gifts too like blankets and stuffed animals. They even have a special section for Bris wear! And their baby shoes are to die fore. Even if you don’t have a special occasion, your little one wont be for very long, if you want her to wear lace and silk , there is not a reason in the world that she shouldn’t. You can keep up to date with baby Beau & Belle by liking their facebook page and see what they think is cool on their Pinterest page. I love their B is for Birthday board, we pinned a lot of the same pins!

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This is a sponsored post. All opinions and ideas are my own.

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What we’re buying

by Juliemara
05.31.13

carters_girls

1/White flowy white top $18
2/Navy Polka Dot Shorts $9
3/Cherries Sunglasses $6
4/Sparkly Sandals $16

Although I’m sure it seems like blogging and taking photos of my girls is my full time job, it’s not. I have a full time office job. Ok it’s not like “the Office” it’s for Carter’s, yup, the cute kids clothing company. I really love working for my company. I think it’s more fun than the average corporate office job, I get to deal with cute little kid clothes all day and I really can’t complain about the employee discount that comes in very handy. I work on all boys product and have for the past five years, but I LOVE our girls designers and all the goodies they dream up for my girls. Four out of five days they are wearing Carter’s. This weekend we are going shopping, here’s what I’m buying.

If you want to grab a few essentials yourself please use the coupon! link to print below.

carters_girls

Have a great weekend

 

15% Off 

20% Off

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Kooroo for you

by Juliemara
03.14.13

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And we got two!

I recently received a lovely surprise in the mail, they were actually for the girls but I got the pleasure of opening the delicately wrapped package.

Even before I cut into the box I loved the gifts already. The shipping package was brightly covered with cute graphics and inspiring quotes.

 

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“The sea, that creates the breeze that rolls on land that blows through trees pushes the pinwheel. The sound it makes is kooroo, kooroo. We are always continually spinning.”

Kooroo is a set of beliefs, it’s about living a whole balanced life while creating beauty from local resources.

At koorookooroo.comthe products sold are made with these ideas in mind. Lovely notebooks for keeping creative ideas organized or the sweet hand crochet toys Talia and Jordan received to inspire the imagination.

These thoughtful little items would make a great gift for a friend getting ready to travel or a baby’s first birthday. A little something someone probably wouldn’t buy for themselves but would definantly brighten anyone’s day.

Thank you koorookooroo.com we love our new little treasures.

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Favorite Find – DIY Clothes for Kids

by Juliemara
01.23.13

A quick background, I am a designer for Carters, the baby clothes company. Which means I draw tops and bottoms then I color them in. Specifically little boys swim trunks and matching rash guards, the coordinating hats, sunglasses and flip flops.

boys-swim

Then for the winter season I do the same with coats and cold weather accessories and shoes.
Yes, I have a really fun job. I color all day. Ok, it’s a little more complicated than that, but only a little. I’m sure you are imagining me like this…

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but no, I do all my drawing and coloring on the computer.

Part of my job is to research new ideas and inspirations, in magazines, in stores, but mostly on line. Sometime I stumble across things that I love not just for inspiration for work but for being a great idea! The designer in me is always looking for fun ways to get my girls to think creatively and to create on their own.

I love getting ideas from two of my favorite bloggers who I follow Ashley Ann, who has five kids and created a whole studio just for creating and crafting with her kids.

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source

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source

And Joel, who has two kids and creates fun craft projects for his kids from items found mostly around the home.

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Today I stumbled upon Gio Kit. It’s DIY clothes for kids. A garment with an outlined drawing and fabric markers. How fun!

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It will be a little while before my girls are old enough to tackle this art project, but in the mean time they can practice on plain white t-shirts.

I’m ordering these markers and shirts from amazon today and will share their masterpieces with you soon

Don’t forget there is always a carters coupon link on the right side bar for you to print and use. If it is ever not updated please send me a message and I will update it or send you a coupon asap.
here are two current ones
20% off $40 or more
15% off everything
Please vote today and once everyday on Top Baby Blogs. The more votes I get the higher my ranking stays, help us be #1!
Thank you

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As Cute As It Gets – Kids Fashion

by Juliemara
01.11.13

 

I’ve been a little obsessed with the color grey since before the girls were born. I had most of my house painted grey,

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bought a grey couch

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and painted grey stripes on the girls walls.

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While I am slowly moving towards white with pops of color for the home I am still loving greys for baby clothes.

Yesterday my favorite kids blog  out of south America posted this adorable outfit for little girls.

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I mean really, does it get any cuter than this. Then there was this cute little outfit that could be for a boy or a girl.

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I have no idea how much this ensemble costs, probably more than I am willing to spend, so it’s for the best that it’s not available for sale in the US. So cute though right.

 

You can pretty much recreate this look by steering clear of color when shopping for baby and sticking to the neutrals. Most stores have a good selection of greys and whites for baby, it’s just about striking the balance and not letting those pieces get over shadowed by the sea of pink and blue in the stores and online.

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1. handmade sweatshirt/2. stripe legging/3. handmade moccasins/4. striped knot hat/5. knit union suit/6. peasant top/7. jeans/8. sneaker

 

Happy Friday! Have a great weekend!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Teething Necklaces, some may say…

by Juliemara
12.24.12

Some may say that teething necklaces don’t work, that it is a myth, a placebo effect. Some may say that they are dangerous.

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I am not one of them. I was, but not anymore. After about six months of watching my sweet babies suffer from teething pain and after being kept up into the late hours of the night trying to comfort a baby who is suffering from pain she has never known before I broke down and ordered two. I did some research and spoke to some friends who had been using them about what type to get. I found mine on Etsy, a seller in Lithuania. The necklaces are made from amber, amber comes from the Baltic sea, near Lithuania, so this made sense. They took what felt like months to get to us.

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Teething pain comes and goes, bothering babies for a few days here and there, maybe lasting as long as a week, but for those few days life is hard for the little ones and for mom and dad.  As soon as I received the package I put the necklaces straight on the girls. Teething pain had started again a few days before. That night they slept, without interruption. Maybe it was coincidence, I don’t know and I don’t care. We haven’t seen either baby experiencing the level of discomfort they did prior to wearing the necklaces, so as far as I am concerned they work. I wish I had ordered them sooner. If I could do it over my girls would have been wearing them from when they were five months old.teething-necklaceteething-necklaceteething-necklaceteething-necklace

Amber has been used throughout the world to relive pain, it has succinic acid in the resin that when worn warms on the skin and releases some of this natural anti inflammatory into the skin and thus into the blood stream. The most pure Baltic amber will contain about 8% of the succinic acid.

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My girls wear the necklaces all the time. I only remove them for bath because warm water and soap can, over time, reduce the effectiveness of the amber. My girls sleep in their necklaces. They are made in such a way that they are as safe as possible. First, the necklace is knotted between each bead, so that in the event that the strand does break, only one bead will fall off. Second,  the necklaces are too short for the girls to pull them up into their mouths, so they can’t and are not meant to be chewed on. I tuck the necklaces into whatever shirt or pjs they are wearing and they girls hardly notice that they are even there.

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And as a bonus, they are supper cute and surfer baby looking.  One more thing I would have done differently was to order two slightly different necklaces so that our family and friends could use the necklaces as a way to tell them apart. I ordered this necklace in particular because I originally read conflicting beliefs as to weather the light or dark beads were more effective. Since ordering the necklaces I have read more times than not that the darker the bead the more succinic acid it contains.

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A new video

by Juliemara
11.29.12

A little video of the girls being their little punky selves
Copy and paste the link into the browser bar if the video does not automatically load.

I am in the process of improving the blog, the experience is never without some hiccups.

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Another year

by Juliemara
11.28.12

20121128-101215.jpgI’m not a big birthday person, I really never have been. I just don’t like that on your birthday everyone asks “how’s your birthday?” “Are you having a good birthday?” And you are expected to say yes. Well what if you are having a bad day?! Maybe you woke up with a headache, or the outfit you wanted to wear just didn’t fit right, or anything? What if it’s not a good day, then you have to tell everyone “no, I’m not having a good birthday” and they think you are just a grump.
None of those things happen to me. My birthday was yesterday and I am happy to report it was a pretty good day.
I wore my new shoes from Sole Society and I love them!

20121128-102419.jpgAnd I got some pretty nice gifts.
Like this little piggy from fruitflypie, from my sisters.

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The beautiful flowers above from my in-laws. And some yummy perfume and a chocolate cake from my husband.

20121128-102313.jpgWe also asked our nanny to stay extra late so we could enjoy dinner out with friends.

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We went to VG Bistro in Roswell. The food was excellent, but I would suggest passing on the desserts. .

20121128-102332.jpgInstead stop by the Krispy Kreme down the road. All in all it was a good birthday. There was no embarrassing awkward surprise party at work (I’ve been at my same company for five years) So I was quite relived by that. I got a grand total of 118 happy birthday posts on my Facebook time line, 1 Facebook message, 7 emails, 14 text messages, 2 ecards and 2 paper cards. I feel very loved. And my girls danced for me while Yael sang happy birthday in Hebrew. I think they we’re confused as to why there were no toys.

I never thought I’d be one of those women who lied about their age, but it turns out I am. From here on out I am 32. Until I’m 60, then I’ll turn 50.

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We Love our Giant Bear

by Juliemara
11.25.12

We love our giant bear. He’s not as big as the bears they have at Costco right now, but he’s big. 4′ 2″ and 5lbs at least. And he is the girls best friend, 20121124-220746.jpg20121124-220734.jpg20121124-220741.jpg

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although sometimes he probably thinks the girls are his worst nightmare the way they try to rip his head off,

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but it’s all out of love. Yes the girls love their bear.giant_teddy_bear

Mr. Bear or dooby dov (Hebrew for teddy bear) has an unlikely story, here’s how it goes…

While I was pregnant I was suppose to walk, helps with circulation. But walking was painful, I didn’t like to do it much. It was late summer as my pregnancy got really difficult and there were plenty of neighborhood festivals happening all over town, a favorite pastime of my husband and I was to wander around these festivals in the hot summer sun enjoying the fair food and music. We had just moved to our new house a few weeks prior. One Saturday morning we heard some noise coming from the direction of the big street outside our neighborhood. My husband went to check it out, it was a parade! That culminated at a small festival of local vendors, crafts and games for kids. He came back to the house to get me and we went to walk around the festival bit. I ate some ice cream, learned that in our town you have to have 2 acres of land to raise chickens, boo, we only have one acre. And entered a raffle for…what you ask? a giant teddy bear! The raffle was sponsored by a local magazine, the East Cobber. I knew that entering the raffle was probably going to get me some solicitation email and maybe a trial subscription of the magazine, but I figured that was about it. A few weeks later I got a phone call, it was a nice woman from the East Cobber, HA! I was their big winner, I had won the bear. Funny, I rarely win anything, I can’t say never because when I first moved to Atlanta I won having my credit card paid off by a Q100, a local radio station and a few years later I won $100 in gas from the same station.

They delivered the giant bear to my house and when I opened the garbage bag it was in I realized it was the actual bear from the festival, gross. Every person at that festival pat the bear as the passed by. That bear wasn’t going anywhere near my newborn babies. It got put in a back corner of an extra room with the plan of donating it one day.

Fast forward five months later. Yael, the girls nanny discovered the bear, and introduced it to the girls, they became good friends right away. The bear was part of the family. The girls loved the bear and I am over my germaphobia. I figured five months of solitary confinement was enough to give all the germs time to die. And it has been proven in mice that living in a sterile environment caused more allergies and asthma to develop, so some germs are a good thing.

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Games with the bear never get old. If we make the bear talk and play they talk and play right back,20121124-220712.jpg

they love to snuggle with the bear and drink their bottle laying in the bears lap, it’s super soft.

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I love seeing pictures of them with the bear then and now. 20121124-222246.jpg

It so easy to see how much they have grown. The bear has gotten pretty gross but loved. The girls are constantly drooling on him an spilling their milk on him. We wipe him down as best we can but Mr. Dooby Dov’s days are numbered.

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Dooby Dov may not always be center of attention but I’m pretty sure the girls take comfort in knowing he is close by, ready and willing to give endless hugs and snuggles.

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One day I’m sure the girls will forget about him and he will sit alone in a corner again before we decide its time for him to move out, but we will always have the photos to remember what a big part of our lives Mr. Dooby Dov was.

With the holiday season upon us I just want to remind all my readers that there are so many children who, for no other reason than luck of the draw, may be without a teddy to hug or a train to push this Christmas. If you would like to make a donation to help a few of these children have a happy holiday please donate toys or money to Amy’s Holiday Party. It is a holiday celebration for close to 1000 Atlanta area children. The party is in its 15th year and includes games, a dance party, pizza, a visit with Santa, new pajamas from Carter’s, and a few new toys for each child to take home. It is a cause I have been involved with since moving to Atlanta five years ago. Thank you for your support.

 

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Smiling Watermelon’s Amazon Store

by Juliemara
11.21.12

I’m sure all of you have seen that cute Sophie giraffe over there on the right side of this blog

and maybe some of you have clicked on it and were taken to this page

It is my Amazon store.

I choose products from Amazons selection and add them to my store. Many of the items that I used and liked are in there, like the twin nursing pillow I used.

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And then there are items that I wish we had bought instead of what we did, like the first years bottle drying rack

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rather than the Skip Hop one we did, because it looked cool,

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but it’s really not very functional. We’ve made due with it because we had it but if I had to do it over, I’d go with the First Years one.

Here’s the cool thing about an Amazon store if someone, anyone buys something from amazon weather it is in my Amazon store or not I get paid a referral fee from Amazon! It’s a tiny amount but if all of you who shop on Amazon clicked on little Sophie Giraffe

and then went to shopping it could add up. And that could mean free diapers! We use a lot of diapers, about 14 a day or 280 a month, and I get them all conveniently and automatically delivered to my house from Amazon on a monthly basis with my Amazon Mom and Subscribe and Save Subscription.

I actually buy a lot of things from Amazon, I’ll check the price of something at Target or Walmart, if it’s the same price I get it from Amazon, because it gets delivered, which saves me time and gas! And then there are those times when I know I won’t be getting to the store in the next two days so I’ll order whatever I just need soon from amazon and know that it will be here in two, three days at most. Amazon really is a Moms and maybe every busy bees best friend. The girls like Amazon too, they often have sales on great toys or baby items, but to be honest, the boxes are their favorite part.

And the best part about shopping through the Smiling Watermelon Favorite Baby Products Amazon store you still use your Amazon account, your own Prime membership, Your Amazon Mom Membership and your Subscribe and Save account. It won’t cost you anything extra it just give us a bonus!

So when you are stuffed to the gills this holiday weekend and you plop down on the couch to start your online shopping spree don’t forget the steps

www.smilingwatermelon.com

Favorite baby products

Powered by Amazon

 

it’s that easy! Happy Shopping! And thanks in Advance.

Oh and setting up your very own Amazon store is really easy to, all you need is an Amazon account and a social security number. If you have a blog or even just want to recommend your own set of products on Facebook or twitter you should.

Safe Travels This weekend!

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