Nine and Ten Month Favorites

I'm a little behind on our favorites from the last couple of months but wanted to make sure I got this out to you, even if it is a little late.  The months all seem to blend together these days, but these are the stand out favorites from month nine and ten.

Happy Puffs
Now that Ethan has his little toofers, he loves eating more solid foods.  The puffs are great, especially the sweet potato flavor, and Ethan goes crazy over them.  It's great hand-mouth coordination practice, helps get his chewing skills in order {though they melt in your mouth in mere seconds} and are a great distraction.  Think dinners out at restaurants or picnics at the park.  We love these things!
Happy Munchies 
Another new favorite is the munchies.  These are even better for biting and chewing and are also a great distraction...see a pattern here?
Freshly Picked Moccassins
There are many imitators but nothing beats the original.  I really can't say enough great things about Freshly Picked moccs.  They stay on Ethan's feet and are SO cute.  And I have to send lots of props to Susan, the owner/creator.  She is beyond generous with her company...always hosting giveaways to her readers.  They're worth every dollar too.
Now that the weather is warming up, we're taking advantage of being outside as much as possible.  This swing is great and cheap too!  
Activity Table
A must have for the baby who pulls up and wants something to do while he's standing.  We started out using the table without the legs and Ethan loved it.  Now he pulls up on it all the time and will start bouncing {his version of dancing} to the music.  So cute.
Outdoor Blanket
This is such a genius idea...a waterproof blanket that folds up up to a little bag!  It's great for the beach and park and super easy to clean too.  We love it!
Sippy Cup
I'm not particularly sold on this version of the sippy cup...I can't tell if Ethan is able to actually sucking water up or just chewing on it.  But it's cute right?  I'm hoping to start weaning Ethan off the bottle around his one year any recommendations on sippy cups that work for your little one are welcome!

xo natasha

Easy Black Bean Tostadas with Cilantro Sauce

It's been a while since I've gotten to post any recipes, but I think you'll appreciate this one.  It's super simple but oh so good.  I posted this image on Instagram a couple weeks ago and people were going crazy!  I really think it's the cilantro sauce on top, it's tangy and can you go wrong with this one?

Recipe from Tasty Kitchen


2 cans (15 Oz. Size) Black Beans
1 teaspoon Chili Powder
1 teaspoon Cumin
¼ teaspoons Cayenne Pepper
¼ cups Water (optional)
½ cups Packed Cilantro Leaves
⅔ cups Plain Greek Yogurt
3 cloves Garlic
1 teaspoon Salt
4 whole Flour Tortillas
4 whole Tomatoes, Chopped
1 whole Avocado, Cubed
2 cups Shredded Lettuce


Preheat the broiler. Rinse and drain the beans. Puree the black beans, chili powder, cumin, and cayenne in a food processor, adding a tablespoon of water at a time to help the mixture move, if necessary.  We ended up adding water to make the consistency just right.

In a food processor or blender, puree the cilantro, yogurt, garlic, and salt, adjusting the seasoning with more cilantro/salt/yogurt to your taste.

Place tortillas in the oven directly on the rack, taking care that the edges are all supported by the rack (otherwise they will bend through the cracks and it will be bent in a funny shape). Let the tortillas bake for 3-5 minutes on both sides until they are browned and crispy.

Top the crispy tortillas with black beans (hold in your hand to avoid breakage), tomatoes, avocados, and lettuce. Drizzle with cilantro sauce...and enjoy!

These would make an easy meal for a dinner party or you could even do a smaller version on chips for an appetizer.  Oh yeah...I'm going to have to try that one!  ;)

xo natasha

Ryan's 30th Birthday Recap

Last Sunday was Ryan's 30th birthday and we decided to host a backyard barbecue at our house.  The yard has been a work in progress, so it was fun to showcase some of the updates we've recently made.  The weather wasn't the best {though it wasn't raining like it did on Monday!} so we moved some of the festivities indoors.  Overall, I thought it was a successful party...we had a blast...and I think everyone else did too!!  ;)

Our dining room turned playroom turned multipurpose room was a hit.  We served the food on our dining room table and the kids had a blast hanging out in the tent.

The buffet...I should have taken it with all the delicious food...there was homemade focaccia, pasta salad and tri tip...yum!

Of course, no party is complete without peonies and hydrangeas!  

I repurposed the bar cart for was a great hub throughout the night.  I especially loved the Prinstagram photos and star paper garland!

Me and the birthday boy!

Ryan and his sister...see the family resemblance?  ;)

All the Schue siblings and significant others.

Backyard debauchery!

Ryan just built these stairs...they were a the best addition to the party!

The Radio Flyer Wagon was a HUGE hit!  Seriously buy one this of all ages were all over it!


Our market lights in their full glory!

Overall, it was the perfect way to ring in Ryan's 30's...and host a fun Memorial BBQ as well!  ;)

One things for sure, I've got my work cut out for Ethan's birthday party.  There will be a very similar vibe since it will be 4th of July weekend...but I'm hoping to incorporate some fun kid activities as well!

xo natasha

Happy 11 Months Ethan!

Dear Buddy,

Yesterday you turned 11 months old...the same day that Dad turned 30!  30 is such a big milestone, but I'm more focused on the fact that you're turning ONE next month!  Seriously...where has the time gone?  And what happened to my little baby?  When I see you around infants, I'm shocked at how big you are and can't believe you used to be that size only a few short months ago.  It's so true what they say about the first'll never change as much in a year as you have this year.

While you're not walking yet, you're getting much more comfortable with walking with your walker and when you fall, you pick yourself up and move on.  It's rare you cry when you fall anymore...unless you really hit your head, like you did on the coffee table this past month.  That was your first big bump and I felt awful seeing you so upset!  

This is you at Dad's 30th birthday yesterday.  Grandma Kidman got you this adorable wagon for your birthday and you LOVE LOVE LOVE it!  I thought you might be scared being wheeled around in the wagon, but you couldn't get enough of it!  It was adorable.

You are also learning how to crawl up {but not down} stairs, pass a ball along, and clap and kick on demand.  The other day, you were sitting in the tub and I told you to kick and you did!  All on your own!  I was pretty impressed!

You love spending your time outside, listening to the birds and watching cars go by.  You also love going to the grocery store and waving and smiling at everyone.  You are SUCH a ham!

You are babbling more and more...I swear you almost said "da da" the other day...we both can't wait for you to say that.  You say mama all the time and sometimes say MMMMMMMoooooo like a cow.  Love it!

I am really trying to take in this last month before you turn 1...I simply can't believe we're already here and yet I am so excited for all that's ahead.  You've already got quite the little I can only imagine how you're be as you develop and grow more.

Love, Mom

Memorial Day {and 30th Birthday} Happenings!

Dress | Onesie | Jacket | Shorts | Hat | Wagon | Sunglasses | Swing

Hi Friends...and Happy Friday!

I am so happy it's a three-day weekend...I always feel like Memorial Day officially kicks off the summer...and we have a lot of fun planned for this weekend.  My sister-in-law's bridal shower is tomorrow and Ryan's 30th birthday is on Sunday!  We're having a big barbecue to celebrate...I'm thinking it will be a nice preview of Ethan's birthday...lots of red, white and blue!  And ideally we'll be spending a lot of time outdoors!

Not sure what to wear this weekend?  Check out this super cute striped tank or this great linen dress.

Hope you all have a happy {and safe!} Memorial Day Weekend!

xo natasha

PS...for those of you who saw my panic last night over my Instagram account, I'm happy to say it's back and all is well...whew!  It did make me realize that I should be backing up my photos regularly.  It also made me realize what an asshole I sound like, complaining about Instagram when there are waaaaaay more pressing things in life.  Lesson learned.  

DIY Fruit Popsicles

With Memorial Day right around the corner, I thought it would be fun to introduce you to a new friend, Sarah, and have her share a great recipe for this weekend!  Sarah is an adorable mama to two and has some awesome DIY this fruit popsicles!  Take it away Sarah!

diy-popsicles-schue Hi, I'm Sarah and I write a blog called A Girl In Transit. I've been a fan of Natasha's blog for a while now. My son, Sean, is only a day younger than Ethan so it's neat watching them reach the same milestones around the same time. Thank you so much Natasha for letting me come and share a little bit of what my family loves with your readers! 

With Summer approaching, creating fun ways to stay cool starts to flood pinterest. I stumbled across THIS pin on how to make these lovely DIY popsicles. I ordered THESE pop molds and picked a day to make ice pops with my toddler. My daughter, Samantha who is 2 years old, is in that "helping" stage so I knew she'd love helping me makes these pops... oh, and eating them...and making a crazy sticky mess too of course.  Sean is teething so these pops were perfect for those poor little gums to get some relief. This season I'm going through with my kids is a lot of work, but the joy that comes along with it overflows in me. Watching my daughter be so happy to do something as simple as cutting shapes out of watermelon, or that wild excited look in my son's eyes when he gets his first taste of the popsicle gives that heavy, loving joy and thankfulness in my heart. I don't want to let go of these sweet moments with my kids. I'm thankful I have my blog to always help me remember, because with how fast time is flying by it's really easy to forget these little moments in time. Below are some pictures on making your own easy DIY popsicles. Thanks again for letting me visit Natasha! 

popsicle-ingredients making-popsiclesmaking-popsiclesdiy-popsiclesthree-popsiclessamantha-popsiclesean-popsicle

Thanks to Sarah for being here today!

xo natasha

Baby Ethan: Week 47

Weight: Unknown...maybe around 19 pounds?

Health: A little bit of a runny nose, which could be from teething but is more likely a result of seasonal allergies.  

Sleep: Still hit or miss.  Some nights he sleeps great and other nights he's up 1-2 times.  Luckily, as always, once he gets a bottle, he goes right back down.

Social: Ethan had a SUPER social weekend this past weekend.  We went down to the bay area to celebrate Ryan's 30th birthday along with college friends.  Ethan got to meet two new baby friends and was held by almost everyone there.  He did great and was a big ham, as usual.  It's funny to see how our social outings have changed with baby!  :)

Diet: Starting to eat most anything!  He had his first bolognese pasta the other day and scarfed it down.  I'm pretty sure he'd be happy to skip the meat puree and go straight to the real deal.  Though he has taken to more of the pureed meat options.  He also loves raspberries!

Clothes: We're officially moving from 9 month jammies to 12-18 month jams!  I just can't believe how fast he's growing!

Baby Gear Love: Baby Man still loves his walkers and balls!  And he got to play with a water table for the first time a couple weeks ago and loved that too!  

Crying: Still has that dramatic flair going on!

Likes: I will say...he loves his mama, which of course, I love.  He also still loves the kitty and bath time.

Postpartum: You know I've had some recent success with finally losing those last pesty pounds.

Milestones: Baby boy had his first bump against the coffee table.  Total mother of the year moment, since it happened on my watch.  :(  Luckily, our little guy is pretty resilient   

xo natasha

Dr Oz's Three Day Cleanse: My Review

I want to preface this by saying, that I've never done a cleanse before.  I bought the Master Cleanse Book and was too scared to actually go through with it.  I'm not really about starving myself and want to lose weight in a healthy way.  So when I saw Alissa's review on Dr. Oz's 3 Day Cleanse, I was definitely intrigued.  First of all, Dr Oz seems like a pretty reputable source {I mean, hello Oprah!} and second of all, I trust Alissa, since I know she's a "real" person!  ;)  Third of all, this is a cleanse that has  substance to it.  You essentially drink 4 whole shakes which consist of vegetables, fruits, and other fats.  No starving involved. 

Aside from all of that, I've been really struggling to lose those last 10 pounds from my pregnancy.  Nothing seems to work.  Just when I think I make progress, I gain 2-3 pounds back.  It's been super frustrating.  So I figured, this would be a good way to rein in my out of control food proportions {breastfeeding was the culprit here}, curb my sweet tooth, and maybe even lose a couple pounds.  

Here's an overview of what's involved:

And here's my review:

Day 1

I started the day with the hot tea and lemon...I skipped the sweetener   The breakfast smoothie was yummy!  I loved the combo of raspberries, banana and almond butter.  Speaking of, how have I never had almond butter?!  It's so delicious!  I was off to a good start!

The lunch smoothie is one word: DISGUSTING!  It's not so much the ingredients...I like apples, cucumber and can tolerate's the texture.  It's really dense and thick and just gross.  It took me 3 hours to choke down the first day. 

I got pretty hungry between lunch and dinner, so I made myself half of a breakfast smoothie again.  And then had the dinner smoothie 2 hours later.  The dinner smoothie is not bad...just a little spicy because of the cayenne pepper.

That night I took the epsom salt bath, which was nice, but it's hard to find time to really enjoy it with a small baby around the corner.  I did get to bed by 9:30 which is unheard of!  I was super tired.

Day 2

Still love the tea and breakfast smoothie and actually look forward to it.  I'm not missing caffeine nearly as much as I thought I would.  

I reduced the celery to two stalks and used a food processor which helped immensely with the texture.  It's not AS bad, but still my least favorite.  

I'm still hungry after work, but decide to just eat the raspberries and banana with a little almond butter instead of making the entire shake.  I was literally licking the almond butter spoon.

Dinner is the same.  I actually had the hardest time with day two.  It was hard knowing what I was going into and knowing that today wasn't the last day.  I end the day with another bath.  

Day 3

SO happy it's the last day!  Happily drink my breakfast smoothie and choke down my lunch smoothie.  Had the same snack after work and then my dinner smoothie followed by the bath.  I notice that I'm not as hungry as the first day and even feel less bloated.


I can't say I felt immensely better...more energized and such.  But I did notice my skin seemed a bit clearer, and most importantly, I lost 7 WHOLE POUNDS!  Yes, I was shocked to read the scale on the 4th morning.  It's been two weeks since I did the cleanse and I've kept five pounds off...not bad for three days.  I can already tell that my cravings have been curbed and my proportions are much more in control.

If you're thinking of kick starting a healthy lifestyle, I would recommend this cleanse.  I really feel like you can do anything for 3 days...and it's probably best to start at the beginning of the week.  I even had a similar breakfast shake on the 4th morning, I was that hooked.  Update: I've been having a variety of the shake every morning along with the green tea and lemon.  I really do love it!

I hope this helps!  Let me know if you have any questions.

xo natasha

Ethan's 9 Month Photo Shoot

I'm kicking off my weekend by sharing Ethan's 9 month photos!  I'm so happy with how these turned out...Darcy of Artyard Photo captured the moment perfectly {as usual!}.  I wanted to get outdoors to showcase our spring and incorporate some fun and whimsical details, like the adorable tepee below.  We also took some shots in his nursery...totally obsessed with all of them!

 Doing high fives!

 We adore his Freshly Picked Moccs.  They're the best!

I LOVE our tepee!  It's by TwoFeetFirst and I highly recommend them!  The tepees are made in the states and come customized with the poles.  Megan was awesome to work with!

 Ethan's Shirt: Zara Pants: Gap  My shirt: Zara of my faves.

 Shirt: Zara Pants: Gap

 Crawling like crazy!

And we're done!  :)

Hope they made you smile today...Happy Friday!

xo natasha