Wednesday, June 20, 2012

some dads deserve the brag

Father's Day goes way beyond that one time a year around this house.  Of course we celebrate on that day, but we keep celebrating for a long time after.  Some dads just deserve that! 

Sal has been my partner in crime for a long time, 12 years to be exact.  We did a lot of the things we wanted to do before we had children. We lived in Las Vegas, went to clubs, went to pool parties, went out for fancy dinners, traveled, etc. Friends told us to take advantage of doing all these things, because our lives would never be the same once we had children.  We knew there was some truth to that because the people saying it already had kids of their own, so we took advantage and did as much as we wanted to, for a long time.

Then we decided it was time to expand the family. We wanted children so bad and we finally got them.  This is our time to focus on our children and do the parenting thing. 

I have to say, Sal is the most amazing dad ever! I applaud him every day. He has a very, very busy job, but every free minute he has he devotes to our children. As soon as they hear the garage door open they fill with excitement, run to the window and start calling for their daddy. Just as fast, they run to the door and greet him with the biggest smiles ever!  It melts us both! I have to say thank you to him, once again, because in the 20 months we have been parents, very few times have I had to give Sebastian and Natalia a bath by myself, Sal is always there helping. When you have twins a helping daddy is always good! Sebastian and Natalia love him so much!

We haven't totally stopped doing the other things we love to do now that we have children. They certainly haven't slowed down our traveling!  We still go out to dinner, the only difference is that now we go to dinner a lot earlier just to accommodate their schedule.  Early dinners are not exactly a problem. Lets just hope they continue to be "good" babies while we are eating out or we will need to get a sitter and go out alone!

It's pretty amazing to see how fast kids grow and how they learn to develop relationships. I am amazed at the love they feel towards Sal and know it will only get bigger!

BIG thanks to my wonderful husband!!

Friday, June 15, 2012

night night blues

Before I was a mom, I kept my opinions to myself when it came to kids.  Mainly because I didn't have any kids and didn't want to give my opinion on something I didn't have a clue about.  I was good at keeping my mouth shut while my head filled with random "why" questions. 

Now I understand what it was all about.  Now I see how hard it is to be a parent.  Teaching your child the "right" way and have them follow without complaints is no easy task! I've learned a lot about raising children so far and I'm sure I still have tons more to learn.

Here's my most recent dilemma. Sebastian and Natalia are 19 months old and I couldn't stand to see them sucking on their pacifiers (or what they call their "night night") and was on a mission to take it away.  I tried everything from hiding it, to telling them I couldn't find it, to giving it to them until they fell asleep and then taking it away, but nothing seemed to work.  They still remembered they had a "night night" and gave me the saddest (and cutest) faces ever to get me to give it to back.  I fell for it every time, and so did Sal.

I was a little ahead of the game a few weeks ago when I only gave them their pacifiers at bedtime (7:00 p.m.) but then we went to Chicago and gave it to them whenever they asked for it, just to save us the embarrassment of a crying baby on a flight, in a restaurant or in a store.  We messed up.  When we came back they wanted it all day long!

A few days ago I tried a new trick. It was nap time, so I put them in their cribs.  I left the room, cut the binkies and gave it to them "broken."  I felt horrible. Confused, they analyzed them and quickly threw them as far as they could. I was so happy! No tears! But that only lasted until I walked out of the room.  Then the tears and whining began.  I went back in their room and reassured them they would be ok without their "night night" and walked out again.  Natalia fell asleep quickly.  Sebastian cried for about an hour! I couldn't help but go in there and try and calm him but he was only happy while in my arms.  I put him back in his crib and told him he would be ok and walked out.  About 30 minutes more of crying and two more visits from mommy, and then he finally fell asleep.  I think I cried about the same amount of time.

Yesterday was a big day, I asked them if they wanted to throw out there binkies and they both agreed and rushed to throw their binkies away in the garbage!

Three days have gone by and I think I may have successfully broken the binky habit! I'm so happy and proud of all of us!!  So, if you are trying to take your child's binky away, don't loose faith! I think I thought it was going to be a lot harder than it actually was.

Now, we are left with only the memories...

Saturday, June 9, 2012

DIY - baby arm candy

Ok, I can't help it... I love having a mini-me! Maybe I shouldn't be teaching her about fashion accessories yet, but I love seeing her reaction when I put something new on her.  She recently learned how to say "wow" and use it in the right situation, these kids never stop amazing me!

I love that she keeps her little bracelets on like a "big girl" so I decided to make her a few to add to her little collection.  They are really super easy to make, so if you have a little diva and want to make her some, here's how to do it:

Get some beads and elastic cord or string.  That's it! Put the beads in the string and tie a knot.  I like to hide the knot in a bead, so when your done just pull a little until the knot is hidden.Your little girl might say "wowwww!" when she sees them too! 

Be sure you watch over your little girl, in case she decides she wants to eat the beads.  I use very small beads, so if Natalia decides to eat one, it won't do much harm.

Feel free to make these in your size ;)

I have tons of beads, its an addiction! These are just a few.

sample cord and string

final outcome!

Still on!

I made these

Natalia's little collection

LOL - modeling

Thursday, June 7, 2012

chicago love

We recently traveled to another one of our favorite cites; Chicago.  Needless to say, this time we were very well prepared for the flight, both mentally and physically.  Not only did we have at least two extra outfits for the kids, my husband and I also had extra shirts for ourselves, just in case.  If you don't understand what I'm talking about, read the post called "traveling with kids" and you will surely understand. We were very lucky though, it was only a 2 hour flight and both kids behaved like angels when they were not sleeping. 

Oh Chicago, how we love you! Every time we visit I compare it to New York City, but a little more relaxed and intimate feeling.  We stayed at The James Hotel, one of our favorites there due to location and atmosphere.  It's smack in the middle of the Gold Coast and River North, which are filled with awesome boutiques and amazing restaurants, not to mention Michigan Avenue is just a few blocks away.

Shopping in Chicago is amazing, I always look forward to going to all the stores we don't have here in Charlotte (like H&M, Zara, Bloomingdale's, etc) I also can't help but get excited about Cusp, a hip branch of Neiman Marcus, which carries only the most ultra chic lines and has very few locations. Natalia was thrilled when I took her to the American Girl doll store, that place is so cute! 

Food was excellent everywhere we ate.  We took the babies everywhere from fine Italian restaurants to steakhouses to Starbucks (for organic chocolate milk, not coffee) to cupcake bakeries.  Speaking of which, we put Sprinkles and Crumbs cupcakes to the test and we were torn!  While Sprinkles has the best vanilla vanilla cupcake on earth, we couldn't complain about Crumbs creative selection and twice the size cupcakes.  Take us to either and we are happy as pigs in mud!

The main purpose of our trip was to visit my husband's brother Louie, who moved there a few years ago.  The babies were thrilled to spend time with him! It's amazing how they remember people they only see a few times a year.  At one point, Sebastian forgot who his parents were opting to cry for his uncle every time we parted ways. 

We had a wonderful time in Chi-town and can't wait to go back.  As promised here are some photos. Hope you enjoy them!

Friday, June 1, 2012

DIY - Personalize Your Wedding Dress

Since I love giving things my personal touch, I just had to personalize my wedding dress! For details on how I  did it, check out my guest blog post on

BridalShoeStyle offers a wide range of affordable wedding and evening shoes, handbags and jewelry to help complete your look on that special day. You are sure to find exactly what you are looking for and much more!  Sign up for their news letter and get 5 tips to help get your fiancee involved in your wedding planning, how cool is that?

Let me know what you think!