February 26, 2013


If you haven't heard of EMERSON FRY yet, let me introduce it to you. 

Started from fabric flower brooches and table linens, then known as EmersonMade, Emerson Fry's designer  quickly stole many girls' hearts by producing some of the most flattering, chic and modern clothing. Since launching their first clothing line, it appears that E. F. cannot keep enough stock and for a good reason. Jeans that make your legs 1000 miles long and your behind look amazing? They've got it. Timeless pieces that will be a staple in your closet and make you feel a-mazing for years and years to come? Emerson Fry got that too. And now with the introduction of their shoe line - E.F. is a firm number one on my "love it" list. Many have a girl-crush on Emerson , the designer behind the brand, myself not being an exception to it - her personality, health choices, etc resonated well with mine, and I felt that instant "kindred spirit" ( you know what I mean). HERE is a great interview with Emerson, and another peak into her home HERE.

 I first fell in love with , then EmesonMade, skinnies that I received on recommendation of a friend right after having a baby. Let me put it simply - I looked in the mirror and my jaw dropped as my mood lifted by 100 points, and after scoring 10 whooping compliments in 2 hours that I was out, I firmly resolved to order a pair in each color ( there were two more available) and I lived in those jeans ever since. With a name change to Emerson Fry and the addition of the new styles, the fit has only improved and my closet has benefited from a few more key pieces, shoes included. When Emerson mentioned the comfort of her 4" ankle straps, I wondered (because when you are on your feet all day long, you KNOW what a comfortable shoe means) , but she was absolutely right - most comfortable pair of shoes I've ever owned, and incredibly stylish too.  E.F.  is my ultimate go-to for an instant mood booster, whenever in doubt or for anything, really. It's an investment that is definitely worth making.

My favorites from E.F. SPRING collection (  preview here ) are the railroad line, yellow v-heel, all skirts ( aren't those minis adorable?!) and definitely her new jean line. What are your thoughts?
{ sign up for a spring collection release HERE}

February 22, 2013

HAPPY WEEKEND! { plus wishes and reality }

...and that picture about sums up this week the best i could ever say. 
i laughed yesterday night as i compared my plans with actual happenings, but nonetheless it still was a pretty fun one. 

this week we :
*attended two beautiful exhibits ( one caught just in time before it closed, and the other one is closing this week, if you are in the area - we highly recommend it! i personally can't wait for this one to start)

* went to a ballet performance to see some friends ( closes this weekend too), so beautiful and inspirational. and i cried next day in class because i rubbed my feet raw and still did not achieve what i was trying for. this little growing belly of mine has tempered with my turns. temporary, i know - happens every time,  and only a dancer will probably understand the drama behind this all. but still - one truly appreciates the magnificence of a human body in "can't-do-this-right-now" situations. i talked myself into smiling again by switching gears into appreciating the magnificence of my body for growing a little human in it ( which is a big achievement of itself) and then still being able to do most of my 'usuals', pointe shoes and all.

*had another routine ultrasound, and were amazed  - yet again - at the growth and progress our little baby made in just a few short weeks. mind blowing. (we accidentally found out the sex last u/s - here is a little video us sharing , in case you missed it)

*had cheese fondue for dinner 3 times this week. somehow fondue associates with "happy" in my mind, and we were thrilled with the first half of this week's amazing weather ( it got to 50s! which is like sahara weather comparing to what we had last 2 months)

*and then it snowed yesterday. so we spend almost an entire half a day at the indoor playground with friends. and i discovered that i have a tiny vicious little runner that went wild when finally unleashed from the stroller. ( she usually sleeps older ones are playing and decided to make up for time lost. the photo stream is to follow because i really want to keep this in my memory), and i may or may not have had just as much fun playing along. 
i'm feeling like a baking/fun food making mood. who knows what it turns to, but if we come up with something interesting, i'll be sure to share!

{go do something arts-related! it's very relaxing and inspirational at the same time} 

February 20, 2013


baby bath time


what can there be more important then the baby bath time?!  
 just kidding - there is 1001 thing that can be more important, but do agree - bath time, especially for the first time is pretty ridiculously important, be it your first baby, fifth, a newborn, a toddler or a little child. 
here is a little list of some natural care products that i found and grew to love over time. and also - LOOK AT THAT FOLDABLE BABY BATH! city dweller's dream! i am so sincerely happy to learn about this new addition to Stokke's impressive list. 

on the other note - please, send some good wishes and say an extra prayer in my and baby's direction. we had another u/s yesterday, and while all looked great, there was an unclear point. the technician assured that there was nothing to worry about, and in 99% of the cases, even if there is an issue, it will resolve itself within the next few weeks, i cannot help myself, but worry. i've never dealt with this type of information ( although it is very possible that i simply was not made aware of such things in previous pregnancies, but sent to another u/s. different doctors say more/less then others )
please, send some good energy our way!

February 19, 2013


...and today we are sharing!
you can tell by this video how much of an "expert" i am at taking those ( on my phone , particularly), and i apologize in advance for a smaller-then-expected image. i realized the mistake too late, and re-doing a video would not be as fun and spontaneous as the original one. please, accept my apologies again, and if you wish, you can see a larger version here.

it appears that my eyes have been more trained to the ultrasound images then i myself have ever realized, because a few weeks ago we went into the room with our minds set on being surprised.

i was following along, absolutely loving how easy it was for me to finally distinguish the head, the arms and thinking back to our very first ultrasound when we couldn't see anything. then we moved to the legs and such, and before thinking twice  a " am i seeing right, is the baby a ...?!" sort of jumped off my lips by itself followed by a huge smile and an approving nod from the tech ( who is also a big friend of ours by now ) to confirm what i saw. 

we walked out a little dumbstruck at what had just happened but extremely happy.
 and i am so glad my eyes didn't let us wait - we are having some serious fun

music: 'lonely boy' by black keys

February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!


from us to you!
sending you lot's of love and warm wishes! xo

(find more free valentine printable coloring papers here)

February 13, 2013

Life according to INSTAGRAM

^^ 1. what's for dinner? because you have to have some at ikea. ^^
^^2. you also have to get a ride to check out. a must. ^^
^^3. hands on learning at barnes&noble. ^^
^^4. and what ikea trip is there without a play station stop? ^^
^^ 5. a little baby bump at happy 19 something weeks made beautiful by hatch clothing ^^
^^ 6. a very happy mail surprise from jcrew. (and just what i needed too!) ^^

^^ some kisses and a very important conversation about baby boy or baby girl in mommy's belly^^

and guess what. we may or may not have accidentally found out who we are having!
stay tuned! we'll share sometime this week! 

have a great wednesday!

February 12, 2013

Valentine gifts for Him

Valentine gifts for him

men are always a fun challenge to find gifts for, so here is a little gift guide for you.
 last couple of years i went for inexpensive and fun, and it's been a big time hit around here. that cell phone handset was a HUGE hit and so were the message pencils. i'd tell you what's on for this year, but he reads here sometimes, so i'll skip. 
wishing you a great tuesday! 

February 10, 2013


let's talk about double strollers for a second. 

if you have children that are close in age ( like i do ) , you may have run into the same problem as i did: with the multitude of the strollers on the market , there was NO good stroller for two little kids. 
it's no secret that we have gone through  - i-don't-even-know-how-many ( THAT many) strollers trying to find the one that would perform well. we've searched high and low, and if you can think of a brand/type of a stroller, we most likely have had it. 
some of the problems we encountered : maneuverability  ( the lack of one. mini baby buss anyone?) , poor positioning of the child/children, no variability in the seating positions ( most of the strollers face out. read here  and here why it is important for a child to face a parent, and here is a proof of the article in life), lack of durability, discomfort for a child, lack of shopping basket space, discomfort for a parent ( like bruised shins or aching back from constant bending forward ) and plain HEAVY among many others, smaller issues. 

we were absolutely delighted when Stokke announced their new connection system strollers.
we were very fortunate to experience Crusi first hand so soon. and just like with Xplory, Stokke's creations never disappoint. although may appear similar to some other models on the market, there are NO comparables to Crusi in US. 

Stokke Crusi Platinum Points: 

*convertibility and connection
this stroller is a dream for parents of close in age children. 
 Crusi is equipped with a state of the art bassinet. it is soft, comfortable, large and deep enough for the baby to sleep safely and securely AND it has carrying handles, so you can move the little sleeping one without disturbing. i love that. 
the xplory/crusi seat takes over when you don't want to use the bassinet ( although it can be used from birth). your shopping/storage space is ginormous in a single mode - i mean , largest i've ever seen without appearing to be such. Stokke strollers are very deceiving in a very good way. 
for two little ones, you have a sibling seat ( a seat that is used in Stokke Scoot), which can be easily put in and removed in seconds, allowing you to be the judge of what stroller mode you want to use. 
example - you drop off your older child at preschool, leave the seat there, and use the stroller in a single mode. then simply click the seat in when you pick up your little one for a comfortable ride.
it is designed to fit with both - bassinet and regular upper seat. 

this stroller moves at my will with a push of one finger, literally. with two children ( and basket) loaded. i can also easily go up/down a step/curb without having to put all my weight and more on while trying to lift the front wheels. this feature is made possible due to a very unique seat positioning which allows for a proper weight distribution. in other words, even with a 4 year old in the BOTTOM seat ( which should translate into very heavy), the stroller rides as if you simply have some things in your shopping basket - very easy. 

^^ look at that little grumpy face. this was the first day we were using our crusi complete with a sibling seat, and she was very disappointed that she was over the age of sitting in it. ( she'll be 7 in a month. though petite as she is, she'd easily fit there still ) ^^

*seat comfort 
Crusi seats are rather deep and very comfortably shaped, which not only ensures a comfortable ride, but allows a bigger child ( like a 4 year old ) to STILL benefit from the ability to rest when necessary with all the luxury bells and whistles. the comfort of the Stokke Xplory seat was something that originally was attractive to me, and all my babies proved that point best : they fall asleep within minutes of being strapped into the stroller. as a parent, it is so relieving to know that your baby is happy and comfortable when you are out and about, just as much as he or she would be in her own little bed. 

*small footprint and all terrain tires
ah... the every city dwelling parent headache: how to fit the stroller in those narrow isles and take up LESS space in your apartment. i LOVE Crusi for this. i never have to worry whether or not it will fit through a non-standard narrow doorway, or will be able to turn in a tight corner. that is a big one.
tires deserve their own paragraph. 
after having dealt with multiple AIR filled tires (the point of which i never understood in a double stroller particularly : 1/2 a lb of weight would not  make that much of a difference. but a flat tire 40 minutes away from home surely does) . i love that Crusi tires are solid, yet soft enough to allow for a smooth ride. which brings me to my next point:

i am very impressed with Crusi's performance on different surfaces. in the last week and a half, i took Crusi on every route i could possibly think and tested the "smoothness" of the ride. i was pleasantly surprised when it sailed effortlessly over some of the tighter spots that previously required some extra care on my part. we also tested different depth and types of the snow - like that slushy, hard wet one (thanks , mega winter) and off road terrain  - Crusi passed with flying colors. two of my sleeping babies did not budge for one second. based on my experience last week i think i can safely predict that it would ride wonderfully in the sand as well.

*shopping/storage basket
another big and important one. the pictures look deceiving, but in reality, Crusi allows for a very good storage space underneath the sibling seat. i fit all my daily needs easily ( and there are more then just a few) and i still have good space enough for some grocery ( or other ) shopping. the bottom of a sibling seat folds up and allows easier access to a larger space ( which i love) , and then, of course, do not forget the Stokke changing bag that can attach right to the stroller, which adds a lot more extra storage ( we didn't have the need to use it yet. that may change when we have a newborn. you know , all the 15 changes of clothes and 20 diapers you'll need for an hour of outing ) 

*comfort for BOTH children. 
i am very impressed as to how well thought out the design of this ( or any stokke product) stroller is. 
i mentioned the comfort of the seats, but there are a couple of more points that i want to touch on in regards to Stokke stroller designs. 
as i mentioned above, Stokke strollers are deceiving in a good way. since the announcement of the new designs, the opinions split with some people taking a rather negative approach to Crusi's double 
seat option. i am 100% convinced that those people have neither seen the stroller close in person, nor have tested it with children in it, and most likely are confusing this model with a twin stroller, which this model is not designed to be.
*size of the seat .
the top bottom seat - being a seat from a FULL size stroller - is very spacious and deep. one does not see much of it because of the position it takes while being covered by very large - yet not appearing so - storage basket. unlike other sibling seats, this is a FULL size seat designed to accommodate a typical ( and in my opinion, rather large - since mine is 4 and still has space to grow in the seat) size child. 
i have experienced several sibling seat option strollers, and i can tell with 200% assurance that Stokke's creation is revolutionary to that market. pictures do NOT show well, but i was pleasantly surprised to see how MUCH space between the seats there was comparing to any other double stroller. as a parent, minutes after putting the Crusi together, i stuck my own head in the place where my child would be and was again impressed with the wide range of visibility. one may assume from the pictures that the child is simply staring into the front seat, but believe me, it is FAR from the truth.
We have later found out that Stokke design team has addressed that concern in particular by designing not only the stroller base, but re-designing the seats to ensure bottom child's comfort from all angles. 
*another point i want to touch on is safety of the bottom seat child. 
first -  position. due to its design, Stokke strollers are HIGHER then any other stroller on the market, which, proportionally places the bottom seat higher then other similar models do. that takes care of the concern of the child being very close to the ground. in reality, the bottom seat's height position is not much different from the one of the typical umbrella stroller. don't trust the optical deception from just looking at a picture,  
"higher is better" Stokke's motto STILL applies

second - safety. while i had many safety concerns while using similar models ( a toddler sticking fingers into the wheel was one of them), Stokke has taken care of everything possible and impossible one can think about. there is not a single crook, hole or anything else where a curious finger can go. the higher position of the seat ( as mentioned above) ensures that the child cannot reach for immediate wheels, and just in case he/she decides to lean over, there are wheel guards that protect just those little fingers. all i can say is - well done, Stokke. but i am not surprised. 
*most important point
Stokke is the only company on the market that researches into baby and child spine development. how important it is, you can read here. but what i HAVE experienced first hand is the results that Stokke delivered. as a constant-on-the-go parent , my children spend a lot of the time in the stroller getting to and from destinations. in my "before stokke" times i was very concerned as to the position by little baby was in. in a typical stroller on the market the child would slouch or be in other less desirable position that, over time, has it's rather serious consequences, some of which we have experienced first hand.
Stokke strollers - as well as other products - are thought out to prevent any disturbance and ensure continuous proper development. after switching to Xplory, we noticed - although looking very similar to other strollers in design - how very differently it positioned our child. the proper support for the feet along with support for the spine and hips allowed the child to sit effortlessly and comfortably in a natural body position. i strongly believe that a long term comfort of the stroller defines a child like or dislike for one. my belief is based on my experience.

 * the ultimate connection system
last that i want to talk about  - but surely not least - is the fact that all 3 models are connected between each other. i did not realize until i looked at it in person, that  not only the upper seat is designed for Xplory AND Crusi use, but the bottom sibling seat is designed for Crusi AND Scoot use.
no matter the perfection of the stroller, one will need more then one stroller , be it ease of travel or simply desire to size up or down in a stroller as the family grows and/or child delevops. 
i love the fact and have great respect for Stokke designers for creating an interchangeable system. all my accessories from Xplory work beautifully with Crusi (or Scoot) and many have build-in places for them already, making the switch even easier. Ultimately, you can start with Xplory or Crusi, based on your personal preference, and Stokke takes care of ALL your growing family transportation needs from start to finish.

^^ stroller is c/o Stokke Crusi used with a sibling (Scoot) seat option, Xplory winter kit and footmuff, Stokke knitted blanket and a cup holder. coat is Hatch. ^^

 Stokke stroller family has created the ideal , in my opinion, situation, which allows you to transition from one stroller to another with minimal expense without sacrificing the most important - comfort and development of your child. 
I will repeat myself again, but well done, Stokke. and a big THANK YOU.


February 07, 2013

Valentine gifts for Her

Valentine gifts for her


valentine's day is just a week away. 
here is a little gift idea guide with everything under $100 to make her ( or yourself!) feel special.
(last minute gift ideas for him and littlest ones are upcoming next!)


February 05, 2013


yesterday i picked up the crew from school and we went down to the city center. it was one of those days when my pregnant self got rather worrisome after reading this post and thinking more about life (or maybe not thinking at all and having all those hormones rage out of control...) 
every baby has been a blessing beyond our imaginations. yet, with every pregnancy i had that same very worry joanna talks about , just as i did with the first, second, third , fourth and now fifth.
time flies, everyone knows that. it literally seems that yesterday i met my now husband. we ice-skated, went on surprise picnics, he brought me mega bouquets of my favorite flowers at the end of my performances. my heart was overflowing with love and happiness. 
 and then i held my first baby in my arms and realized that i had no idea that being a mom is such an amazingly wonderful thing. again, my heart was bursting with the immense amount of love that i had no clue was even possible to have. i remember thinking too that it would never be capable of expanding beyond that. until my daughter was born. the story repeated itself time and time over. 

and while i realize that this time is no different, and we already love this little baby so very much, and there will most definitely be another chamber in my heart bursting with overflowing love, i worry... 
i hope that just like with all the other four, this little new one will fit right in and complete the team. i know that my oldest two are SO very excited ( as a matter of fact for about a year now i heard
"can we have another baby soon?"), but this time is different from all the other ones before. there will be a big gap between the oldest and the youngest now, and they will remember and note the difference between "before and after" - which is something completely new to me.
day in and day out i think about it. how to transition? how to ensure that the oldest ones know that i love them just the same, if not more, even when i will be ( and i know that i will) taking 90% of my time to care for a newborn? what to say? and how to act? 

until i figure it out, i'm trying to make the most of each day. there was nothing spectacular about yesterday. we simply went downtown. chatted about school and projects on the way ( did i mention that he is a scientist and she is an artist?). it was freezing. we made our way into a covered area, got some animal cookies and tea and watched trains for a good hour or more, and then went home. 
and it was as if we did the best thing in the world ever. 
for those that asked, the stroller is newest stokke crusi, the top seat is with xplory winter kit.

did you ever have similar experiences? can you relate?
 what would you do?


February 04, 2013


this week instagrams are really some small bits.
the SUN is out and the temperatures were nice, so, naturally, we spent every second soaking it all in. 
you know, just in case utah changes its mind again. i will tell you though, it's magical what sun can do to one's mood. birds are singing and i was all but skip-hopping the streets, morning sickness and all ( even THAT i think is better ) 

we are not big on watching games here, so while many have been "gaming", we have been jumping, 
stealing towels , reading books and singing. our main man had a work week overload, 
sunday included, so we used the time to everything that normally wouldn't be done, 
which, in these kids minds , equals to immense amount of FUN. 
like bringing all the projects to the living room, reading Sherlock Holmes ( did i ever mention how
HAPPY i am they love it?!) and recording about a 1000 videos of the littlest ones 
because they are instant mood boosters for all of us here ( seriously. no matter the hard day, my 
smile stretches ear to ear when they do something innocently absolutely adorable. the older kids
are on "my side" of the camp now. they are in the "observation" over "doing it" stage now)
this 'say mama' made me laugh out loud , and the kisses with the apple and this singing melted my very buttery heart for 10000th time that day ( please, don't worry - the "ow!" was a response to tickling,
i didn't cut it well.  plus "owie" is that new word that's being used with EVERYTHING right now)
And speaking of those videos, i am loving ( and overloading) that new vine app. 
i also posted some of the videos on twitter if you don't have vine
I caved in and replied to 100th tag of "5 things about you" , and that's about all
we have as to this "insta-week in bits and pieces"

hope you had a great weekend and 
wishing you a fabulous monday! 

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