Daily Life

Friday Favorites: It’s February Edition

Hi friends! I am on a blogging roll this week (probably shouldn’t get used to it). Hope everyone is having a great week, it’s cool and rainy here in Brisbane the last two days and I secretly love it because it has been so hot lately.

I don’t always do a Friday Favorites post, but this week I have thought of a few things I wanted to share that I am loving, so I am  linking up with HeatherAndrea, Erika and Narci.

Extra Quiet Time

So last Thursday I decided to turn Leighton’s room into a cave. Not quite, but between the sun and the birds she was waking up every morning by 6am. This was fine when she was taking two naps a day, but knowing it was time to switch her to one I wanted her to get as much sleep as she could in the morning. So I used a combo of an extra loud, all night sound machine (aka an old iPhone with a white noise app), blackout curtains, and foil to make it extra dark and peaceful. Since we are renting we can’t hang anything so I turned to Pinterest and was able to hang the curtains using only command hooks.

Now she is sleeping at least an hour longer in the mornings and sometimes more. It’s my favorite because not only is she getting more rest, but I am getting an extra hour or two in the mornings to get things done (like blogging), read and enjoy a hot cup of coffee. So it’s a win for both of us! I just wish I would have done this earlier.

New Books

Right before we left the US I ordered a couple new books to read. I have been terrible at reading ever since Leighton was born (so the past year and a half), but I really wanted to get back into the habit. I also ordered a new devotional written for moms. I have been looking for a new one for a while and Hope Unfolding by Becky Thompson seemed to fit the bill. So far I am really enjoying it and look forward to my little quiet time in the morning and read and reflect.

I also ordered Emily Ley’s Grace, Not Perfection and am loving it so far. I heard her interviewed on Jen Hatmaker’s podcast and knew I wanted to read her book (both of them actually). It has great insight into her life as a successful entrepreneur and mother, plus tips to make your life easier. In the picture perfect instagram world we live in now, I think we could all use a bit more grace on ourselves.

Califa Farms Almond Milk

I feel like I have seen people post about this almond milk before, but only recently saw it in stores here (it’s from the US). I like to use almond milk in my coffee as a creamer, and usually stick to the same brand. When I saw the Califa brand was on sale, I decided to give it a shot and it did not disappoint. Both times I have gotten the unsweetened vanilla and it gives just the right amount of creaminess and sweetness.

Pool Time

It has been hot in Brisbane (I mean, it is summer) but coming from winter in the US less than two weeks ago, I can feel the heat even more. Luckily, our little townhouse neighborhood has a community swimming pool right by our house. We have spent most days since we have been back in our bathing suits. We also had a playdate at a local splash pad/swimming pool that was so fun too.

I have a feeling we will be getting lots of use out of the pool in the next month. Leighton is becoming a lot more confident in the water too and loves to jump off the side of the pool to us. We just switched her swimming lessons to the pool closer to us, and the first lesson was a bit touch and go. Hopefully she warms up to the new teacher and environment and loves it as much as her old class.

Casefile: Amy Lynn Bradley

So this wasn’t actually from this week, but I have a podcast recc for any fans of true crime (that’s everyone right?). It’s an older episode of Casefile called Case 59: Amy Lynn Bradley and it is about a girl that goes missing on a cruise ship. Not only do they talk about her case, but they go into a lot of details about cruises and sex trafficking. It is pretty crazy. I had no idea how many people go missing from cruise ships.

PS If anyone has any good true crime podcasts I need to listen to, please share!

Pregnancy Friendly Workout

This week I made my return to the gym after almost two months. Since I have pretty much done zero activity in the past couple months (besides chase a toddler) I wasn’t sure where to even begin. Luckily, I remembered that I had pinned a pregnancy workout from Heather at Life in Leggings last week. It was a great, challenging workout that left me feeling quite sore. I have been reading Heather’s blog for several years and followed her journey to becoming a mom. It makes it even more fun to follow along her pregnancy and hopefully she shares more great workouts soon.

Hope everyone has a great weekend! Happy Friday 🙂

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  • Hooray for Leighton getting more sleep in the mornings! The girls are still working through that, but I think that our white noise machine really helps out too! And way to go with working out while pregnant! I think that I pretty much stopped doing anything after the first trimester, and I know how hard it’ll be to start up again now!

    • I was bad getting back after Leighton was born, I didn’t join a gym until she was 7 months I think. Hope the girls are doing well in their daycare and you’re settling into work!

  • Danielle

    I’ll need to try that almond milk! I am doing a vegan challenge for the month and I need all the help I can get!

    • It’s so good! I usually don’t get flavored almond milk but it was so good I might get the chocolate next time. Good luck with your challenge!

  • Sara Fehrenbacher

    Ahh… that extra hour of sleep/mom time is amazing, isn’t it?! My 4 month old just started sleeping in 5-6 hour stretches, and it has been amazing!!
    http://www.saraleeblog.com

    • Sara Fehrenbacher

      sorry for the huge pic… I thought I was posting a profile pic. How embarassing!!

      • Haha I didn’t even see anything! I’m not ready for the newborn sleepless nights 😬. Leighton slept through the night really early, so I know there’s no way I will get that lucky again.

  • Our apartment has an unneccessary amount of really really large windows, and we aren’t allowed to drill into the walls either – command hooks for hanging curtains has been such a life saver! Also, loved Emily Ley’s book! If you like Jen Hatmaker’s podcast, you should try the Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey- she interviewed Emily as well a year or two ago, and I always get good mama blogs from her. Love your blog – so fun you guys live in Australia!

    http://www.everywherejoy.com

    • I don’t know why I hadn’t done it sooner, we have been renting the past three and a half years (since we moved here). I love Jamie Ivey’s podcast too!

  • I’ll have to try that almond milk. I’m allergic to dairy but I haven’t had much luck in finding a dairy-free milk that I like. Thanks for the tip!

    • I really like the almond coconut blends too, if you haven’t tried any of those. I’m not a big fan of coconut milk on it’s own but together they are yummy.

  • A community swimming pool would be pretty welcome I have to say, it looks like a decent one too? I love Casefile, and that episode about the cruise ship freaked me right out. How can someone just disappear like that and nobody can figure out where she went?! And that cruise ships have shaky if not no jurisdiction?? Terrifying.

    We have those horrible vertical blinds like you get in an office in our place and I hate them. I’m a bit scared of command hooks though (never used them before) because our landlord is overly strict about hanging things. But I really, really hate those blinds.

    • Yeah it’s really nice and the shallow end has a cover so it’s nice and shady too. Oh m gosh the cruise ship stories make me never want to take one! You’ve never used command hooks?! You shouldn’t be afraid they are like magic. We have hung heavy frames without leaving any marks. They just come right off when you are done with them.

  • i am soooo glad you take advantage of your community swimming pool. also – are you going to do another post now on how to survive international flights with a TODDLER (and by yourself, no less.) you are seriously my super hero. little leighton is growing so fast – where is the time going!?

    • I hadn’t thought about it, but I could! I am not sure I am any expert, but I could share what worked and what didn’t. Time is flying but it seriously seems like yearssss ago that we both had newborns and were exchanging snapchats during the nights of sleep deprivation.