{Friday Finds} Organizational Items I Need

Okay, so it isn’t Friday. As a matter of fact… It is Sunday. 
And, in this past Friday’s post I wrote, 
“Come back later today for a new {Friday Finds}”
and then I didn’t write it. 
So, today’s {Friday Finds} is all about organization.
My Next Project: Free Printable
from Perideau Designs
Looking for a good way to organize each and everyone of the projects you have on your plate? 
Right now I have a rotating set of notebooks that I use and I could sure use something else to organize my projects more clearly. I love this free printable and plan to fill a binder with it very shortly!
Source: Perideau Designs
Blog Organization
I found two different and awesome ways to organize the blog. I’m currently trying to decide which will work best for me and my blog or if I need to design some of my own. Check these out:
Free Blog Organization Printables 
featured on My Girl Thursday
Source: My Girl Thursday
  Adorable…right? The designs were done for My Girl Thursday by draw!Pilgrim and I think they are just beautiful. I’d want to sit down and plan things out for the blog if it all was in a neat little package like this!
 Free Blog Editorial Calendar Printables
Screen Shot of Amy Bayliss Blog Editorial Calendar Printable
Okay, I’m all about lists and calendars so this simple, but cute, printable fits my organizational style perfectly. Amy Bayliss provides them for her readers for free! She also has a great Personal Assistant sheet that includes editable lists for weekly routines, daily routines and the weekly menu.
I hope to have a few of these in use by the end of the week! 
Other Organizational “Finds” You Might Like:
  • I don’t need this quite yet, but will totally make use of it fairly soon… A Baby Sit Kit Printable! These are not free, but they are inexpensive. And, the coolest part!?! Have a kid that is a babysitter or wants to begin babysitting? The kit comes with fabulous resources for a baby sitter to begin a really organized and reputable little business! Oh, and currently Infarrantly Creative is giving away 5 free printable copies. I’m not sure how long the giveaway lasts so enter now!
  • “Life…your way” has an AMAZING assortment of FREE organizational printables. And, I mean AMAZING. The site has FREE printables for everything including: Birthday Party Planner, Thanksgiving Planners, Christmas Planners, Home Maintenance, Weekly Chores, Track Your Spending Worksheet, Menu Planning… the list goes on and on. 

 

   I hope you found something fun in these {Friday Finds}!
Do you have any organizational tips or finds to share? 

Fill in the Blank Friday

I’m not sure if I’ve posted about this little site before… but, I’m sort of a blog stalker of 
Love it.
Well, every Friday, Lauren posts a list of blanks for people to fill in on their own blogs and link up to her site. I love it. I love clicking through to see what other people have answered as well. But, because I have always tried to have a {Friday Finds} post on Fridays I have never linked up my own Fill in the Blank Friday. But, this week I thought… why not do both? So, there you have it. Check back later today for the {Friday Finds} of this week and please enjoy my version of Fill in the Blank Friday… 
(Oh, and check out Lauren’s original as well!)
source
1.   My favorite color is purple. I would say grey because that is the majority of my closet and a color I always gravitate to…but, that is Lauren’s favorite and I didn’t want to copy on the very first question! I do however really love the color purple. You might have noticed in the blog’s design! ;-)

2.  My travel destination of choice is  anywhere I haven’t yet been. I love going to new places. I wish I could travel more… most of my travel consists of going back home to see family (which I of course love doing) but, sometimes I wish I could go see family in new and awesome destinations. Hey, family out there… what do you say?

3.  My favorite  food is bread. Any kind of bread really… I like them all. It is a dangerous love, my love of bread.

4.  My happy place is cuddled up against my husband’s chest. Sounds super sappy… but, for a non-hugger like me it is quite amazing that this is the one place I can always go to feel happy and calm. Although, my new nursery is also becoming quite the happy place… sometimes I just walk in and stand for a moment. 

5.  My favorite saying is… this one stumps me a bit. But, here are a couple of my favorites that I’ve been seeing on Pinterest and that I just had to “pin.” 
 — “Done is better than Perfect” — “You’re my Favorite Reason to Lose Sleep” —”My life has a superb cast but I can’t figure out the plot” — “I have so much to do that I am going to bed!”

6.  My dirty little secret is that while I am a BIG control freak and GREAT at organizing my room is a DISASTER area. We just shut the door… Oh, and while I am at it I’ll add on another “dirty” little secret: We often throw parties and invite people over just to motivate us to clean our house. I’m hoping that this is not a habit I bring into motherhood!

7.  Something friends might say about me is that I  am a planner (sometimes to a fault). I am also kind (sometimes to a fault). I’m also quite hard on myself. And, I have an annoying southern accent at times. Of course… my friends are kinder to me than I am to myself. ;-) 

{Recipe} Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes

During this pregnancy I really have craved one thing more than anything else:
Peanut Butter! 
Before getting pregnant I could have gone through one jar of peanut butter about every 3-4 months. Nowadays we buy a new jar weekly.
So, when making a batch of cupcakes I thought it would be fun to make a cupcake that reminded me of a really good PB&J sandwich. And, let me say… these were the best cupcakes I’ve ever made. 
Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes
Ingredients:
Basic White Cake Batter- your favorite recipe (or box mix*) will work great
Cream Cheese (2 boxes) Room Temp
Smooth Peanut Butter (4 Tablespoons) Room Temp
Butter (1 stick) Room Temp
Powdered Sugar (2 Cups-make sure it is fresh!)
A little bit of milk or cream
Jelly in your favorite flavor… I went with Strawberry
Strawberries for garnish
* If you use a basic cake mix try making it a little more special by adding in some extra vanilla extract
Tools:
Cupcake Tin 
Cupcake Liners
Piping Liners & Tips
Small Cylindrical Object or possibly a spoon I used a Piping Tip
Big Bowl & Hand Mixer 
(or… if you are lucky enough to have one a stand mixer works great)
Directions:
1. Bake Basic White Cupcakes according to your favorite recipe.
Let cool while you make your delicious peanut butter frosting!  
2. Make frosting by mixing together cream cheese, peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar. Add in milk or cream if needed to get desired consistency. This takes a LOT of mixing so be patient… it’ll be worth it. Then spoon into a piping bag fit with the tip of your choice. I used a larger star-shaped tip.
3. Take your cupcake and cylindrical object of choice and get ready to make some holes in your cupcakes. We are going to be filling these holes.
Cupcake and a piping tip that will be used to break into the cupcake
Use cylindrical object to put a hole in the cupcake’s center. And, by hole I don’t mean go out the other side… just need a big empty space in the middle of the cupcake.
Making the Hole
See how perfect it came out!
I was going to use the insides of the cupcakes to make cake balls… 
but, instead I ate them. They were very tasty.
4. Fill holes with the jelly you have chosen. 
The jelly can be added using a piping bag… but, I just used a spoon.
5. Pipe on peanut butter frosting and top with a strawberry for garnish!
(Or raspberry if you went with a raspberry jam…etc.)
YUM!

{Recipe} Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes

*This post was orginally posted on A Well Crafted Party*

During this pregnancy I really have craved one thing more than anything else:

Peanut Butter! 
Before getting pregnant I could have gone through one jar of peanut butter about every 3-4 months. Nowadays we buy a new jar weekly.
So, when making a batch of cupcakes I thought it would be fun to make a cupcake that reminded me of a really good PB&J sandwich. And, let me say… these were the best cupcakes I’ve ever made. 
Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes
Ingredients:
Basic White Cake Batter- your favorite recipe (or box mix*) will work great
Cream Cheese (2 boxes) Room Temp
Smooth Peanut Butter (4 Tablespoons) Room Temp
Butter (1 stick) Room Temp
Powdered Sugar (2 Cups-make sure it is fresh!)
A little bit of milk or cream
Jelly in your favorite flavor… I went with Strawberry
Strawberries for garnish
* If you use a basic cake mix try making it a little more special by adding in some extra vanilla extract
Tools:
Cupcake Tin 
Cupcake Liners
Piping Liners & Tips
Small Cylindrical Object or possibly a spoon I used a Piping Tip
Big Bowl & Hand Mixer 
(or… if you are lucky enough to have one a stand mixer works great)
Directions:
1. Bake Basic White Cupcakes according to your favorite recipe.
Let cool while you make your delicious peanut butter frosting!  
2. Make frosting by mixing together cream cheese, peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar. Add in milk or cream if needed to get desired consistency. This takes a LOT of mixing so be patient… it’ll be worth it. Then spoon into a piping bag fit with the tip of your choice. I used a larger star-shaped tip.
3. Take your cupcake and cylindrical object of choice and get ready to make some holes in your cupcakes. We are going to be filling these holes.
Cupcake and a piping tip that will be used to break into the cupcake
Use cylindrical object to put a hole in the cupcake’s center. And, by hole I don’t mean go out the other side… just need a big empty space in the middle of the cupcake.
Making the Hole
See how perfect it came out!
I was going to use the insides of the cupcakes to make cake balls… 
but, instead I ate them. They were very tasty.
4. Fill holes with the jelly you have chosen. 
The jelly can be added using a piping bag… but, I just used a spoon.
5. Pipe on peanut butter frosting and top with a strawberry for garnish!
(Or raspberry if you went with a raspberry jam…etc.)
YUM!

{Recipe} Mocha Cupcakes

*I’m a big fan of cupcakes.*
They are the perfect ratio of cake to frosting for me. I really love collecting cupcake liners and creating fun cupcake combinations… So, today I’m going to give you recipes to two cupcakes I made this year for my husband’s birthday.
First up: Mocha Cupcakes!
*This post is a little picture light as I forgot to take step by steps of this recipe. But, it is easy and I’ve got some great links for you!*
Whenever I make a basic chocolate cake I look to Martha for a good recipe.
I tend to tweak things a little as I go to my tastes… but, the base recipe for this cupcake is Martha Stewart’s Devil’s Food Cake batter. Got to give Martha her props!
The following includes the changes I made to give them more of a Mocha flavoring.
Cupcake Ingredients: 
 —1 cup Dutch Process Cocoa Powder
—1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons brewed coffee
—3 3/4 Cake Flour (Martha calls for sifting but I rarely sift)
—1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
—3/4 teaspoon coarse salt (I used ground sea salt)
—3 3/4 sticks butter (softened)*
—2 3/4 cup sugar (I use baker’s sugar because it is a little more fine)
—1 Tablespoon + 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract (only the real stuff people!)
— 5 Large Eggs (Room Temp)*
—1 1/4 Cup Whole Milk flavored with coffee beans**
* I don’t do microwaves and like most people (I assume) leave my eggs in the fridge… so, when I start getting out ingredients and getting ready to put all these things together I always set my butter and eggs out on the counter first. Hey, while you are at it go ahead and set more butter out because you’ll need it for the yummy frosting.
** This is the secret to making these puppies taste like a good cup of Mocha rather than just a delicious choco cupcake. I learned how from the Cupcake Project.
(yep, an entire blog devoted to cupcakes. swoon.)
Image Source
Cupcake Directions: 
 
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Put liners in cupcake tin.
1. Mix cocoa and hot brewed coffee in a bowl until smooth. Let cool.
2. Mix flour, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
3. In a large bowl beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping bowl as needed.
3. Pour coffee flavored milk into cocoa mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking until smooth.
4. With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture to butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with cocoa-milk mixture, starting and ending with flour mixture. Use immediately.
Pour into cupcake liners. I like to pour them in about 2/3 full to get a flat top to put yummy frosting on… but, I’m not great at this and sometimes I get a rounded top. Check out this awesome post by Kelly Neil regarding filling cupcake liners!
Bake approximately 22-25 minutes. This will depend on your oven and the weather most likely… I always check after about 20 minutes and see how they are doing. If in doubt at all stick a toothpick in them… if the toothpick comes out clean they are DONE!
Cream Cheese Vanilla Frosting:
I am LAZY with my frosting. I do make it from scratch…. but, I stay away from any frostings that call for cooking things or that deal with egg whites. Give me a good butter frosting. yum. This frosting is a basic butter frosting with the addition of cream cheese because I don’t like my frosting too sweet and it pairs really nicely with the mocha goodness of this cupcake. Well, and everything is better with cheese.
 Frosting Ingredients: 
—2 packages of cream cheese (8 oz each)
—1 stick of softened butter
—2 cups powdered sugar (the fresher the better)
—1 tsp vanilla extract*
—1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
*Another yummy way to do this is to substitute the vanilla extract for vanilla bean and 1 tsp. heavy cream. So tasty!
Frosting Directions:
  Mix all ingredients for what seems like forever, until it is a smooth, frosting-like consistency. 
Put in piping bag and pipe away! 
After putting on frosting I then shaved some milk chocolate onto the top for garnish. 
Another great garnish would be chocolate covered espresso beans.  
I’d love to know if you end up making these!! 

{Sneak Peek} Cupcakes!

I wanted to leave you with a quick sneak peek into tomorrow’s {Recipe} Post…
CUPCAKES! 
All who know me know that I {LOVE} Cupcakes. A lot.
I made these cupcakes a while back and will be sharing the recipes and tutorials with you tomorrow!
Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes
Mocha Cupcakes

{Mommy Monday} Barefoot, Pregnant and the Hospital

Yep, {Mommy Monday} on a Tuesday. I have an excuse… 
I’m Pregnant! 
(Soon I’ll need a new excuse for my sorry posting skills.)
But, I will try to have another, non-mommy related post up later today. 
This last week was a doozy. 
—I was tested for GBS and my test unfortunately came back positive.
—I ended up in Labor & Delivery with “Practice Labor,” 
most likely due to being on my feet too long and getting dehydrated.
— I learned a LOT about hospital procedure and along with my diagnosis of GBS was very disappointed at my options (more on this later).
—My feet have swollen so large that I can’t wear any of my shoes comfortably. 
I must be 37 weeks pregnant
.
~*~
Barefoot
This is what I’ve been doing a lot of lately. My feet are HUGE. My hands are HUGE. My face is HUGE. I’ve been retaining over 5 lbs of extra weight in water a day. 
(As in, I weigh myself at night at am 5 lbs heavier than in the morning when I am less swollen. Possibly not the most scientific way of coming to this conclusion.) My midwife says that all my vitals are fine so this is just natural pregnancy swelling that happens in some women. Lucky me. 
(Thankfully I live in Oregon where the weather has been under 80 degrees most days. 
For all the pregnant women dealing with the awful heat advisories… my thoughts are with you!)
I’ve gone from a shoe size of 9.5 to a flip flop size 11! I’m mainly walking around barefoot or in my new, ridiculously large, flip flops. 
Boy, does my husband tease me when I start doing something in the kitchen.
The plus side of these uncomfortable, huge feet? 
I feel a lot less guilty about treating myself to a pedicure!
Such pretty swollen peds!
The Hospital
*Wow… I keep writing and re-writing this post as it is very personal and very NOW for me. I think I will refrain from saying everything I want to say about the following topic of Natural Birth and Hospital Procedure… but, am more than willing to discuss them with anyone with any questions.* 
So, I’ve been very adamant that I want as a natural birth as I can possibly have. 
I was super happy when my very large HMO provided me with a Midwife that I really like and seemed to support my hopes for a natural delivery. We honestly can’t afford to do this without my HMO, so having these options available and ready to us seemed like a dream come true. 

(Please note: I have NOTHING against women taking medications to ease their pain during birth and feel that this is a very personal choice. My choice is to go without pain medication if at all possible but, I will listen to my body throughout this process and not rule anything out.) 
I really don’t want to be induced if at all possible….this is a natural thing, right?
It’ll happen (for most women) when the baby is ready, right? 
I don’t like the risks associated with narcotics or epidurals so I am choosing to do it without. But, if induced the pain is even worse…and, let me tell you that practice labor stuff was no joke.
I was in PAIN and it wasn’t even the real thing!
I recently found out a lot about hospital procedure and 
was very disappointed in the information that I received. 
I was going to go into a big rant about hospital procedure just now… 
but, I know why they have procedures in place. They have to protect themselves. 
I get it, although I may not agree with the procedures, they do keep some women safe. 
I am not a very high risk pregnancy (although the diagnosis of GBS does put me slightly higher risk than some). I think I am more aggravated by the lack of information about these options/procedures until this late in the game. Maybe it is because it is my first pregnancy and I didn’t know to ask…. but, wow I couldn’t imagine how scary all this might have been if I hadn’t done the research or gone to the birthing classes! 
So, we are perfecting our birth plan at the moment. I’ve been researching several sites with materials on birthing plans. I’ve been reading up on all the drug options and possible options for drug intervention. I’ve been researching my diagnosis and my options. I’m just researched out in all honesty. But, the knowledge is making me much more comfortable with the idea of giving birth. 
I know it may not go to plan. I know that things may happen and I may end up with an epidural and a C-section. I know that I may decide I can’t handle the pain and I ask for a drug. 
But, I feel that with the knowledge in hand and a well-thought-out birth plan I will be more in control of the experience of the birth of my child.
Both the hospital and my HMO provider have stated on their websites (and in person) that they highly support women who come in with birth plans that have been well thought-out. 
I’m hoping to find that it is the case in my upcoming birth!
A couple of sources on birth plans that I’ve found very useful: 
AmericanPregnancy.Org: Creating Your Birth Plan
www.birthplan.com

Also, both my hospital and insurance care provider have great guides for creating birth plans. I’d suggest checking your hospital or insurance provider’s sites and searching for birth plans.
Did you have a birth plan? What were you surprised about with hospital procedure? Did birth go according to your plan? 
I’d really love to hear about your birth experiences. I’m getting so close!

{Friday Finds} Random Fun

On occasion my {Friday Finds} post is hard to write mainly because a lot of the things I find and really enjoy throughout the week tend to not always fit into a neat little theme. 
So, today’s {Friday Finds} doesn’t really have a theme… but, rather it is a collection of really fun things I’ve discovered over this past week! I hope you enjoy!
(BTW… You can find a ton of inspiration from my finds throughout the week by following me on Pinterest! Need an invite? E-mail me and we’ll see about getting you one!)
Photo Booth Props: Free Printable from Oh Happy Day!
Image Credit: Oh Happy Day
Okay, we all know I love a good home photo booth. But, I’m always searching for inexpensive and fun props for my booths… low and behold Oh Happy Day has not one but TWO amazing free printables for your home photo booth. CHECK OUT MY FAVORITE SET BY CLICKING HERE!
The above illustrations were done by Lauren Stiebler. 
DIY Board Books from Utah County Mom
 
Yep, this is as cool as it sounds. I’ve been a little baby centered lately and have been looking for ways to introduce my (soon-to-be) little one to his far away relatives. I love the idea of this book and think it is such a neat way to familiarize a kid with the faces which he/she should be familiar!
Check out Utah County Mom for instructions and a link to a store that sells BLANK board books!
(This could also be a good idea for a baby shower gift or favor!)
Totally “Gross” Party: An awesome party for a little one tired of traditional themes and ribbons featured at Catch My Party
Image Credit: Stephanie M. on Catch My Party
This has got to be one of my FAVORITE parties I’ve seen in a long while. While there are a lot of beautiful event out there I am rarely shocked and awed at the creativity incorporated… this party has plenty of SHOCK and AWE… beware though, it is totally GROSS. Stephanie’s son wanted a different type of theme without ribbons and bows and he certainly got it! Loved the dessert table!
Nail Art: Words on Finger Nails from Passion Nail Art
Image Credit: Passion Nail Art
As I’m working on getting things ready for my Library Themed Party I fell in love with this tutorial! If I get time I’m totally going to have words on my nails for the party. The instructions to the tutorial are in French, but the photos are pretty self-explanatory and it all look really fun and easy.
A Well Crafted Week in Review: 
1. {Mommy Monday} Packing for the Hospital
Check out the items I’m taking to the hospital with me and check out the free printable I have for you!
Check out a simple little party in honor of the Harry Potter 7 pt. 2 release! 
A quick update on how my Library Themed Birthday Party is going with a look at the invites I created.
An easy and tasty recipe for a summer salad using fresh veggies and a grill!
5. {Friday Finds} Random Fun
Have a great weekend everyone! If you have any “FINDS” that I should see please leave a link in the comments!

{Recipe} Summer Salad

In most of the United States it is Summer… here in Portland it is well, not.
(Not that this 36+ week pregnant woman is complaining!)
But, we did have a few nice days a while back and I got to take advantage of two of my summer favorites: Farmer’s Market Veggies & My Grill.

{Working on it Wednesday} Library Themed Invites

I’m working hard this week on getting together the last little details of the Library Themed birthday party I discussed in a former {Working on it Wednesday} post.
I’m getting excited as I am seeing pieces of the party come together quite nicely! 
I’ve added more to the pinterest board in case you want to follow it: 
I posted my inspiration for the invites on my board as well:
Image Credit: Catch My Party and Elaine H
I really loved how it looked like a library plate for a book and wanted to emulate that while adding in some fun girly colors. Here is what I came up with:
We are going to do dessert and drinks at the party… along with a few surprises along the way. I’m picking up a few books that were going to be recycled tomorrow so that I can use their pages/covers for decoration in the party.
Do you have any library themed ideas that I could implement last minute? Also, what are you working on this Wednesday?

{Simple Soiree} Catching Up On Harry Potter

I’m just a little bit of a Harry Potter fan. 
As in HUGE Harry Potter fan.
So, with this movie coming out over the weekend:
See the HP Website Here
A few of us had to get together and re-watch the last couple of movies in preparation. 
So, in order to enjoy said movies we did a bit of English fare.
My friend Alicia made some delicious cherry scones. They were made with some amazing Farmer’s Market Cherries… yum!
We enjoyed the scones with some tasty English tea. Twinning tea is so tasty. 
We also ate cucumber sandwiches and cheddar biscuits with ham and mustard. So tasty and carbalicious! 
We enjoyed watching movies 6 and 7 pt. 1…
then on Sunday we finally got to see HP and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2!!!
I cried. 
I loved the movie.
I will be seeing it again, soon.
Did you see it? If so, what did you think? 

{Mommy Monday} Packing for the Hospital

Well, it is here… I’m 36 weeks. He can come any day now and my doc won’t stop him from coming. (Although, we all hope he makes it another couple of weeks to grow a bit stronger.)
But, since I am here at the possible last month of pregnancy it is now time to pack our hospital bags and get them in the car. I’ve read the checklists and tried to figure out what I would need for my first birth. I assembled my own sort of list (which I am sharing today)
but, would love your advice! 
We have 3 bags (my bag, my hubby’s bag and the baby’s bag) that are going to the hospital with us along with my Boppy, laptop and purse. I still have a few things to clean and pack away and then we’ll also have the last minute items of chargers and other such electronics. But, overall it is almost done!
*READ ON TO SEE WHAT I’VE PACKED AND TO SEE A NEW FREE PRINTABLE!*

 


 What I Packed: 
*For During Labor*
—Birthing Gown (Didn’t want to wear the hospital one)
— Robe
—Slippers
— Chapstick
—Hair Ties
—Ipod stocked with music
—Mints and Hard Candies
 *For After Birth*
—PJs
— Nursing Tops
—Nursing Bra
—Nursing Pads 
—Industrial Sized Pads
—Underwear
—Toiletries
—Makeup (I just bought a whole new basic set to keep in the bag)
—Contacts/Contact Solution (Will Grab Glasses Last Minute)
—Hair Dryer
—Going Home Outfit (that will fit my big bloated self)

Hubby’s Bag: 
—Snacks
—Comfortable Clothing for two nights/days
—Toiletries
—Laptop & Phone filled with games/entertainment/books
—Camera!
—Binder with Must Call list, birth plan (with extra copies), insurance information, directions to hospital from several different areas, list of area restaurants near hospital
—Gifts for Nurses (see below for more info)
—Banner from baby shower to put in room that says, “Welcome Small Human”


The Lil Guy’s Bag: 
 —One Swaddling Cloth
—1 Baby Blanket
—A couple pairs of socks (one for his little hands)
— Diapers (we are doing gDiapers so we wanted to have some with us)
— Small Stuffed Animal
— Button on shirts
—Going home outfit
—Also will have car seat in car—


In my last Mommy Monday post I wrote about how we are bringing Thank You gifts for our nurses and those people that help us during our labor and delivery. We packed 5 of them and made them look super cute with a printable. I thought I’d upload the printable for anyone who wanted to use them! They say, “Thank you for taking care of us on this special day!” 


*What did you find that you needed or 
didn’t need when you went to the hospital?*

Dear Readers: A Plea for Blogging Help!

—Dear Readers—

I’m about to have a baby. My first baby… a little guy that has already pulled me from the blog a bit. But, I’d really like to keep things rolling on here! So, I’m asking for your help. I’d love to run a month long string of posts from readers and other bloggers from the week my babe is due. I’d like to get things all set up before D-Day hits, because I’m pretty sure I’ll be thinking very little about the blog once I see my little man’s face for the very first time. :)

If you already have a blog/website then I’d love to feature some of your 
work in any of the following areas: 
Motherhood (ie Mommy Mondays)
Crafts
Parties/Events-Real, in the making, photo shoots
Recipes!
When running your blog’s work you will have a featured day that introduces you, your blog and your post. I will then run a button for your blog (if provided) along the sidebar of my blog for the week following your post! 
If you are a reader that wants to shareI’d love to feature your real party!!! Just send along your photos and any details you can about the party so that I can share your party fabulousness with everyone who reads my blog.  
-OR- 
Do you have any party questions you’d like answered? Please e-mail me (or leave the Qs in the comment section so that I can develop posts to help answer some of those Qs!
Thank You for your Help!
—Jenni
Leave your information in the comments section and I will e-mail you
-OR- feel free to e-mail me at:

Packing for the Hospital

*This post was originally published on A Well Crafted Party*

Well, it is here… I’m 36 weeks. He can come any day now and my doc won’t stop him from coming. (Although, we all hope he makes it another couple of weeks to grow a bit stronger.)

But, since I am here at the possible last month of pregnancy it is now time to pack our hospital bags and get them in the car. I’ve read the checklists and tried to figure out what I would need for my first birth. I assembled my own sort of list (which I am sharing today)
but, would love your advice! 
We have 3 bags (my bag, my hubby’s bag and the baby’s bag) that are going to the hospital with us along with my Boppy, laptop and purse. I still have a few things to clean and pack away and then we’ll also have the last minute items of chargers and other such electronics. But, overall it is almost done!
*READ ON TO SEE WHAT I’VE PACKED AND TO SEE A NEW FREE PRINTABLE!*


 What I Packed: 
*For During Labor*
—Birthing Gown (Didn’t want to wear the hospital one)
— Robe
—Slippers
— Chapstick
—Hair Ties
—Ipod stocked with music
—Mints and Hard Candies
 *For After Birth*
—PJs
— Nursing Tops
—Nursing Bra
—Nursing Pads 
—Industrial Sized Pads
—Underwear
—Toiletries
—Makeup (I just bought a whole new basic set to keep in the bag)
—Contacts/Contact Solution (Will Grab Glasses Last Minute)
—Hair Dryer
—Going Home Outfit (that will fit my big bloated self)

Hubby’s Bag: 
—Snacks
—Comfortable Clothing for two nights/days
—Toiletries
—Laptop & Phone filled with games/entertainment/books
—Camera!
—Binder with Must Call list, birth plan (with extra copies), insurance information, directions to hospital from several different areas, list of area restaurants near hospital
—Gifts for Nurses (see below for more info)
—Banner from baby shower to put in room that says, “Welcome Small Human”


The Lil Guy’s Bag: 
 —One Swaddling Cloth
—1 Baby Blanket
—A couple pairs of socks (one for his little hands)
— Diapers (we are doing gDiapers so we wanted to have some with us)
— Small Stuffed Animal
— Button on shirts
—Going home outfit
—Also will have car seat in car—


In my last Mommy Monday post I wrote about how we are bringing Thank You gifts for our nurses and those people that help us during our labor and delivery. We packed 5 of them and made them look super cute with a printable. I thought I’d upload the printable for anyone who wanted to use them! They say, “Thank you for taking care of us on this special day!” 


*What did you find that you needed or 
didn’t need when you went to the hospital?*
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