Friday, November 30, 2012

Stockings or Garland?


As many of you know, TOMORROW is December 1st!  And the kickoff to our Christmas Cheer Linky Party is next week!  I'm really going for a rustic and natural theme this year.  I've eliminated most of the red from our living room, so I want to focus on browns, creams and metallics this Christmas.  

If you remember, I had a good amount of red last year on display...especially on my mantel.  This year, I want to display new stockings or perhaps garland on the mantel.  Here are my top choices:


I am loving the neutral color of these Pottery Barn stockings...I only wish they were a little more affordable!

I also have my eye on this furry option from Nordstrom...but again, a little pricey!


Surprisingly, these Restoration Hardare stockings are much more affordable...but which color to choose?


I've also thought of forgoing the stockings this year for some bunting.  I love the idea of streaming a fun garland across the fireplace instead...this Land of Nod one hits the mark!


Of course, Minted has an adorable new party line on their website...I'm digging this cute garland.

So which one is your favorite?  Do you think I can ship in time for our mantel linky party next Thursday?!

I'll be decorating all weekend long...hope you will be too!

xo natasha

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Happy 5 Months Ethan!



Dear Baby,

Seriously...where has the time gone?  How is it possible that 5 months have passed since you came into this world and into our lives?  Also...how is it possible that we are more in love with the little person you're blossoming into?  You are SO happy, chatty, expressive, and fun to be around.  Really, a joy!

While you gave us a scare this past month with regard to your weight gaining, you've really turned it around and I'm confident you're back on track now.  Your little legs rolls are definitely an indicator as well!  You eat about 7 ounces of breast milk from a bottle and I'm told you completely light up when you see the bottle come your way.  You still nurse like a champ though...and I adore the bonding time we get together.



I packed away the rest of your 0-3 month clothing.  You still swim in your 3-6 month onesies and pants, but definitely fill out your 3-6 month jammies.  And you still rock your 2 diapers.

You completely grab with purpose and just discovered your feet this past month.  I think diaper changes are a highlight of your day...you grab your feet like crazy.  AND you laugh like there is no tomorrow.  Seriously...I have NO idea what makes you crack up like you do, but you just laugh and laugh!  Dad thinks you may be getting ticklish too...when we tickle your sides, you light up!



On the same note of your hands, you've started to suck your left thumb.  Being a thumb sucker myself, I find this completely adorable.  You have also been known to stick your entire fist in your mouth!

This past week was Thanksgiving and we traveled down to my hometown of Newport Beach for your first time.  You got to meet lots of new family and friends, who totally fell in love with you.  I'm still in awe with how you handled new people and never really got tired or fussy.  You just rolled with the punches...such a blessing!  And everyone was beyond impresse with what a good baby you are.  My heart could just burst!  We also celebrated Christmas with my side of the family and you got completely spoiled.  You are one loved baby!

{You with Auntie Lauren}

You sleep pretty well...waking up usually once a night...around 4am.  You are sleeping back in your crib and we usually swaddle you in your sleep sack with one arm out.  Occasionally, you'll sleep unswaddled, or in bed with us {my favorite!}.  I think you prefer to be close by...and who can blame you!

Timmy the cat!

You also love the cat and dog...they've all of a sudden caught your interest and you love grabbing their fur and just starring at them.  Can't wait for you to get big enough that you can crawl after them and snuggle with Wilson!

Some firsts for you this past month are...your first cold, TWO first holidays: Halloween and Christmas, first trip to mom's hometown, and first time meeting family and friends like Auntie Rose, Reynolds, the Quinns, the McKibbins, and Courtney and some of Grant's friends.

{Thanksgiving Day 2012}

{You with Kellyn!}

My high school friends...aka surrogate Aunties!  ;)

{You with Courtney!}

I cannot believe that by your six month check in we'll have celebrated your first Christmas...which is my all-time favorite holiday!  Yay!


I say this every time, but it takes on new meaning each month: you are such a joy and light in our lives. Your smiles are contagious and your giggle is quite possibly the best sound in the world.  I love that you nuzzle in the small of my neck and hold my finger with your hand.  I love how you adore your baths and kick a million miles per hour.  And I can't lie, I love how you lock eyes with mine and go to grab for me when you need me {aka, you're hungry!}.  I even love your little cries and how you pucker your lip...melts my heart in one hot second.  And I especially love that you stare at me with your big brown eyes...I swear you are an old little soul.



Thanks for choosing me as your mommy...I love you!

Love, Mom

xo

OH and you must check out my {utterly honest} mommy confessions over at Running from the Law!

And CONGRATS to Morgan over at The Smore's. Party of Four for winning the bib giveaway!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Caramelized Onion & Prosciutto Pizza



Hi Readers!  Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!  I'll recap some of our trip on Ethan's 5 Month post tomorrow...but we had a great time visiting my family down in Orange County and celebrating baby's first Thanksgiving!  :)


I thought I would share a little recipe, though I know we're still recovering from our Thanksgiving comas.  If you're looking for something easy, yet still worthy of a meal for date night, check this one out.  It comes from The Pioneer Woman and I'm shocked that I actually enjoyed it since it involves red onion {which I am still not super keep on ever since the pregnancy}.  And while I'm also not a huge meat fan, I do love THINLY sliced prosciutto...the key being thin sliced.  It should be paper thin...and is best enjoyed fresh from the butcher.  

{Ingredients}


1 whole Pizza Crust
Olive Oil, For Drizzling
1 whole Large Red Onion, Halved And Thinly Sliced
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
Kosher Salt To Taste
Parmesan Cheese, Grated
10 ounces, weight Fresh Mozzarella Cheese, Thinly Sliced
8 slices Prosciutto (more To Taste)


{Method}

Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet. Add onions and brown sugar and toss/stir for several minutes, or until onions are brown and cooked. Set aside.

Roll out pizza dough to a rectangular shape. Drizzle on olive oil, sprinkle on a little salt, followed by a little Parmesan.

Lay slices of mozzarella evenly over the top of the crust. Arrange caramelized onions over the top of the mozzarella. Randomly lay slices of prosciutto over the onions.

Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the lower half of the oven, or until crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and cut into squares. Serve immediately.


If you've ever had prosciutto, then you know it's salty and delicious!  The caramelized onions actually add a bit of sweet to it, which makes it the perfect combination of salty sweet.

Hope you enjoy!

xo natasha

Monday, November 26, 2012

Lulu & Georgia Sale!


For those of you not familiar...you must check out the new online shop, Lulu & Georgia!


The shop carries tons of goodies, like rugs, pillows, furniture, and more!

Here are some of my favorite items:




I'm in love with the pretty textiles and bold pops of color!

And today only, Lulu & Georgia is offering 26% off everything in their store...pretty awesome, right?  I guess it's time to tackle that Christmas list!  ;)

Happy Shopping!!

xo natasha

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Baby Ethan: Week 21



Weight: Hoping for 13+ pounds by now!

Health: Healthy as a horse...his cold has vanished!

Sleep: It's a little better this week...normally only waking once at 4am.  Of course this is just in time for our holiday travels...which I'm sure will totally throw things off!


Social: Ethan got to meet a fraternity brother of Ryan's this past weekend and he's soaking up time with his Aunt Lauren before we leave to see my family down south for Thanksgiving.  He still hams it up big time around women...he was a hit at the restaurant we went to this past weekend!

Diet: Mama's Milk!

{Can you hardly stand this little turkey?!}

Clothes: 3-6 month


Baby Gear Love: This kid loves his rattles...or anything that makes noise!  He's becoming so much more engaged with colors and movement as well.  We also busted out the Nosefrida for the first time...it works REALLY well for stuffy noses!  Last, Ethan is getting close to sitting up on his own, so the bumbo and boppy have been super helpful!

Crying: Just at night when he's hungry or overly tired.


Likes: Anything he can get his hands on and put in his mouth!  ;)  And the pets of course!

Postpartum: I'm happy that I've recovered from my cold as well!  ;)

Milestones: Grabbing at his feet, grabbing with real purpose...to play with this toys and rattles, and grabbing at hair, skin, fur, etc.  Really his grabbing skills have totally developed!  


Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!  We're off to Orange Country for the holiday!

xo natasha

Oh and don't forget to enter the bib giveaway!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Roasted Poblano Enchiladas



I know we've all got turkey on the brain this week...but allow me to introduce a tasty distraction: roasted poblano enchiladas with portobello mushrooms and black beans!  My mouth is watering just thinking about these bad boys.  Best part is that you really don't miss the meat in these...the portobellos more than make up for it, which makes these husband approved too!  :)

Recipe via Perry's Plate

Ingredients

{Roasted Poblano Sauce}
1 poblano pepper
2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 large clove garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/8 tsp. ground chipotle pepper (optional)
2 cups crushed tomatoes
about 1/4 cup water (to thin out the sauce)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped + extra for garnish

{Filling}
2 roasted red peppers, diced (jarred or fresh)
12 oz. portobellos (about 4-5 large), stemmed, gills scraped out, and diced
1/2 red onion, diced
extra virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

{Other ingredients}
12 corn or whole wheat flour tortillas
4 oz. queso fresco
fresh tomatoes or pico de gallo, for serving

Method

Preheat oven to 425 F.

To prepare the sauce: Roast the poblano pepper (and red peppers if using fresh) directly over the flame of a gas burner, turning frequently with tongs, until evenly charred. (Alternatively, char under the broiler, turning once or twice, for 5 to 7 minutes total.) Transfer to a deep bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside to steam for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat 2 tsp. olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, salt, cumin, chili powder, paprika and ground chipotle (optional) and cook, stirring, until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Peel the pepper, discard the stem and seeds, and chop. Add to the saucepan along with the tomatoes, water, and chopped cilantro. Return to medium heat and cook, uncovered, at a steady simmer, until the liquid has reduced slightly, 10 to 15 minutes. Puree using an immersion or stick blender (or very carefully transfer to a blender or food processor) until smooth. TIP: Can be done a day or two in advance.

To prepare the filling: While the sauce simmers, place the mushrooms and red onion in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast, stirring halfway through, until the vegetables are tender and browned in spots, about 15 minutes total. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in beans and roasted red peppers (if you are using jarred peppers make sure to remove the excess moisture). TIP:Can be done a few hours in advance.

Reduce oven temperature to 375 F.

To prepare the enchiladas: Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Place a skillet over medium heat. Coat both sides of a tortilla with cooking spray. Heat in skillet for 5 to 10 seconds per side, adjusting the heat if the pan gets too hot. (Or you can warm the tortillas in the microwave.) Spread about 1/3 cup of the filling and 1 Tbsp. of the sauce down the middle of the tortilla and roll it up to enclose the filling. Place seam-side down in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining tortillas, filling and sauce. Spread the remaining sauce over the enchiladas. Top with crumbled queso fresco.

Bake in preheated oven, uncovered, until hot, about 15-20 minutes. Serve with fresh tomato or pico de gallo and garnish with cilantro.


These definitely had a kick to them so proceed with caution!  

Hope you enjoy!

xo natasha

And don't forget to enter the bib giveaway here!

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Cutest Bib on the Block...and a Giveaway!


I was recently contacted by the lovely Francis, blogger at It's a Pink Life, shop owner of FHJ Baby and most importantly, new mommy to sweet Mariam!  Francis makes the cutest baby bibs and was kind enough to send along one for Baby Ethan!  :)




Super cute right?!  It's the gray polka dot bib!  Here are some of my other favorite picks:




Aren't they darling?  

I'm super excited because Francis is also giving away a bib of your choice to one reader!  It's great for all you mamas out there...or as a gift!  

To enter, please be a follower of Schue Love and visit FHJ Baby to pick your favorite bib!

For additional entries:
{leave a separate comment for each}

Tweet about the Giveaway {include @schuelove}

The contest will end on Sunday, November 25th at midnight {pacific time}.

Thanks and good luck!!

xo natasha

Friday, November 16, 2012

Friday Fancies::Thanksgiving Ta Da!




Bag | Sweater | Pants | Earrings | Ring | Loafers

Can you believe Thanksgiving is NEXT WEEK?!  I'm still shocked that it snuck up on us so fast!  And we're back to traveling...this time down to my hometown to see my family for the holidays.

If I could wear anything I would opt for something like the above...opulent yet still casual enough.  How is that possible?  I say, rich patterns and textures with "comfy" basics...like a sweater and flats.  And I'm seriously drooling over this Chloe bag.

Of course, I can't forget my little turkey!



Checkered Bodysuit | Vest | Checkered Onesie | Sweater
Cords | Beanie | Socks | Uggs | Striped Onesie | Moccasins | Overalls

So many cute things to dress the little guy up in!  Just wait for the Christmas edition!!

xo natasha

Linked to Friday Fancies

And catch me over at The Daily Dish where I'm being featured on her Foodie Friday Series!!  :)

I'm ALSO sharing what I'm most thankful for this year over at In the Pink & the Green!

Happy Reading!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Breakfast Pizza



You guys...we made an amazing discovery over the weekend: breakfast pizza!  It sounds kind of strange, and I was worried that the egg would be overpowering, but it was pure perfection.  I'm guessing the pesto and goat cheese had a little something to do with it, but I could easily eat this again and again...for breakfast or any meal of the day!

The eggs is added after the pizza ingredients are set and it's kind of poached once it's all done.  Not runny at all!  I can see adding even more tasty ingredients next time...perhaps some fresh basil on top?  

{Ingredients}

Pizza Dough {homemade or pre-made...ours was pre-made and it turned out just fine!}
Pesto {same as above}
Mushrooms {any kind will do}
Cherry Tomatoes
Goat Cheese
4-5 Eggs


{Method}

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees {hotter is best!}
Spread the pesto over the dough to cover--about 2 tablespoons
Crack the eggs in separate ramekins.  Slice the tomatoes in half and chop the mushrooms.
Scatter the tomatoes and mushrooms on top and drizzle with olive oil.  Pop into the oven and bake until the tomatoes are soft and the crust starts to brown.
Remove from the oven and poor the eggs on top, one at a time...you can remove some of the white of the egg to keep the pizza from getting too runny.  Sprinkle goat cheese on top.  
Return the pizza to the oven and bake for 3-5 minutes, or until eggs set.


Definitely enjoy right away...with some orange juice!  :)

xo natasha

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Baby Ethan: Week 20




Weight: Yesterday, we took Ethan to the doctor for a weigh-in.  I wanted to make sure he was gaining weight and I couldn't stand the idea of waiting a whole month to find out.  Well it was good news!  I was SO happy to learn that Ethan has gained 8 ounces in two weeks...which is more than he gained in the previous month.  So he is officially 12lbs 10.5 ounces...and he grew a centimeter too!  So so relieved.  A special thanks to those of you who offered advice and support on his 18 week check-in.


Health: Ethan had his first cold this past week.  It was nothing too severe...just congestion and a little cough.  But of course it has really impacted his sleep...poor guy just can't sleep well on his back.  And now of course, I've caught his cold.  Fun times!  ;)

Sleep: See above!  Ethan gets up at 11pm, 3am, and 7am...so basically every 4 hours.  The hard part has been that he doesn't go back down like he normally does, and I would attribute this to his cold.



Social: We took our Christmas photos this past Sunday...can't wait to get the proofs and put our Christmas card together!  Ethan did really well, despite his cold.

Diet: Proudly serving mama's milk!

Clothes: 6 months...I finally packed away the rest of his 0-3 month things.  *Sniff sniff!*


{Couldn't you just kiss those lips!?}

Baby Gear Love: Anything he can grab and put in his mouth.  And blankets!

Crying: Mostly at night when he can't get back to sleep.



Likes: Ethan has taken a strong interest in our cat.  The cat likes to lay near him and Ethan just grabs at her...fur, skin and all.  She's pretty patient with him too!  He also would love to grab at Wilson...can't wait for him to get a little older so they can play!


And  I spoke too soon...Wilson couldn't help but get a little attention too!

Postpartum: Having a cold is sucky...especially because I can't be babied anymore!  Ha!  

Milestones: Does gaining 8 ounces in 2 weeks count?  I am seriously so proud of him!

And I want to wish my husband a happy 10 years since we've met!  We were just two college kids back then...but my have far we've come!  ;)



xo natasha

PS...thanks for all the sweet comments on Ethan's 3 months pictures.  If you missed them, you can check them out here!  ;)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bringing Christmas Cheer to the Blogosphere!


Hey Girlfriends!

I seriously cannot believe it's almost been a year, but guess what?  I'm teaming up with a great group of ladies again to bring you our Christmas Cheer in the Blogosphere Link Party...and you're all invited to join in on the fun!  


If you're not familiar with our linky party, you can check out all the fun from last year here.

Yes, this girl got her decorating on last year, and this is really the push I need this year with baby in tow!  So here's the plan and the fabulous ladies we'll be linking up with:

On December 4th, bust our your DIY skills and link up your Christmas Crafts with Cassie over at Hi Sugarplum!
Display your Merry Mantels with Michelle over at Ten June on December 6th!
December 11th we'll be trimming the Christmas Tree with Megan over at Honey We're Home!
Then, join me on December 13th for your sweet and savory holiday dishes!
Next up on December 18th will be a fun Christmas Vignette with Courtney over at A Thoughtful Place!
And last, on December 20th, is our fun and NEW link party...Holiday Apparel with Michaela over at Michaela Noelle Designs!  Think fashion boards for your holiday outfits or model your best dressed holiday look!  If you have a fun fashion DIY..this is the place.  Don't feel like dressing up?  That's ok...show us how you'll dress your baby or display your Christmas Card with the whole family.  Anything goes-- so don't be shy!  ;)

So what are you waiting for?  Get going and I'll see you back on December 4th!

Oh and feel free to grab a button to help spread the word!  



xo natasha

PS...a BIG thank you to the talented Jessica from Creative Design for hooking us up with our awesome graphics!  She rocks!
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