Social icons

Monday, 13 November 2017

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller


Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller

Before little Alder came along, Emery and I would go for a walk almost every day. It's such a great way to get some exercise, enjoy some fresh air and hang out with my girl. I knew that when this next baby came along, going for walks with both of my kids was high on the priority list. So finding a double stroller was high on the to-do before baby came list.

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller

 Enter the Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller. This double stroller has been such a hit with our family. 

Emery and Alder can ride together, which they both love. Emery has the option to either sit, or stand on a platform. Alder loves watching his big sister, and Em loves to make him laugh. I love both options because Emery can sit facing me and have a snack, but then when she gets a little bored or Alder gets fussy she can stand up and entertain him.

For Alder, his Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat clicks right in with an audible click. It makes it so easy to transfer him from the car to the stroller if we are out running errands. When he gets bigger, he can sit in the front with a traditional padded stroller seat with a five-point harness, a large adjustable canopy and removable tray with two cup holders. 

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller

It's super easy to fold up, with a one-hand ultra-compact quick fold which makes it easy to put away. The front wheels swivel and have full suspension which makes for a smooth ride. There is also a one-touch brake to the keep the stroller in place when parked. 

One of my favourite parts is the parent tray which has two cup holders, perfect for my coffee! It also has a huge storage basket underneath which you can access from the front or back. When you are lugging around two babies you need a few things, haha, so the large storage space is awesome. 

Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Double Stroller


You can find more information about the Chicco BravoFor2 Standing/Sitting Stroller on the Chicco Canada's website, and more of their awesome products!


<3 Kastles








SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
Friday, 10 November 2017

Our Newborn Family Photoshoot


Edmonton newborn photographer

One thing I deeply regret is not getting family newborn photos taken when Emery was born. I took lots of photos of her, and did a little newborn shoot but didn't get any photos of us with Emery. I don't think we had a family photo till she was 4 months old. As soon as I got pregnant with our second, I knew we had to get photos taken of us as a family when the baby came.

Enter the amazing Karly Ford. Her work is ridiculously beautiful. Every time she posts a photo on Instagram, I literally swoon. Her style is so unique, gorgeous and you really feel the moment she captured in each shot.

Initially I was nervous having her come to our house because hey it's not perfect, we were running on no sleep and who knew how our spicy little toddler was going to act. It was so silly to worry about it. Shooting with Karly was a dream, it felt like we were hanging out with an old friend. I still can't believe the magic she captured in these photos. These are pictures we will treasure for our whole lives. Thank you Karly from the bottom of our hearts for these photos.

If your in the #yeg area, you need to book her for whatever photo op you have planned! You will not regret it!

Now enjoy this incredible spam of teensy tiny Alder, and a much chubbier Emery. I'm crying over here missing that little newborn. 

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot













newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot

newborn photoshoot



Thursday, 9 November 2017

Alder's Birth Story

I don't know why but I have been putting off writing this down for quite some time. Perhaps it's because things didn't go exactly how I would have wanted but that's ok. Warning, there might be a few things in here that might be a little TMI for some people, so you might want to stop reading now, haha!

For the last couple weeks of my pregnancy, I kept thinking every night when I went to bed that it would be the night this baby would come. I'm pretty sure I was driving my husband crazy! I did have some random contractions here and there near the end. 

 The night before I had our baby, I went to go get my hair cut because I was panicked that the baby would be here so soon & that it would be a long time before I got a hair cut again (for the record I was right, and haven't had a hair cut since!). After I got my hair done, I decided to go run a few errands and shop around a little bit. Once again, I had this funny feeling that the baby was going to come that night so I thought I better enjoy the tiny bit of somewhat freedom I had left, haha! I was also paranoid that I was leaking amniotic fluid. I decided if I didn't go into labor that night, I would go get it checked out in the morning. I went to Home Depot looking for a snake plant because like any sane pregnant lady, I was dead set on finding before this baby came. I just had to have this snake plant for this baby. Totally rational, right? 😉

I went into HomeSense to look around, and came across the most beautiful wood shelf in the shape of the letter "A". Funny enough the only name we had picked out was for a boy, and it was Alder. I took this as a sign from the big guy that we were going to have a little boy named Alder, and that this baby was coming tonight. When I got home, my husband had been in full nesting mode frantically cleaning all the dishes, and I was totally relaxed. Which was so opposite, haha! I went to bed pretty early, knowing I was probably going to get woken up rather unpleasantly.

I woke up around five and got up to use the bathroom, as one does quite frequently when pregnant. I woke up again 40 minutes later with contractions. They were about 7 minutes apart. We started gathering all our stuff, made a phone call to my best friend, and woke up Emery. We drove over and dropped off Em at my best friends house (thank you Ali and Vince, total life savers), and made our way to the hospital. At this point the contractions were about 3 minutes apart but still manageable. Funny fact, on the way to the hospital I did my make-up in between contractions. I mostly just did it to distract myself from the contractions. I also had a Safeway donut for breakfast, that I grabbed from our counter on the way out the door. Healthy, I know but obviously I had to milk my pregnancy for all it was worth till the very end, right?

We parked the car in the parking lot and waddled on in. When we got inside we had to register downstairs before going up to the L&D. The lady at the front wasn't super pleasant, and we had to wait for a Porter to come take us upstairs. This drives me crazy, haha! I remember with Em, the guy took foreeeever to take us upstairs. Once we got up there, I got checked out right away in a little triage room. They checked to see if I was leaking amniotic fluid but they weren't entirely sure. At this point it was 7:30 in the morning. She did a check to see how things were progressing, and I was 6 cm and thin (90% effaced).  We stayed in the triage room for a little bit and then worked our way down to the Labor room. It look us awhile to get there, as every time I had a contraction we stopped. At this point I was digging my nails into Aaron's hands every contraction. Thanks babe!

We finally got settled into our room. There was a speaker dock for an iPod in our room, and I made Aaron plug in mine and put Hanson on. That's right, I was in labour listening to Hanson (they are my all-time favourite band). Things were progressing pretty fast for me (Emery's labour was the same) so they said if I had wanted an epidural that I had to get one now. Around 9:20, I got my epidural. If you know me, I'm not very good with needles, hospitals or anything medical. When I got my epidural with Emery, it was no problem. This time for some reason, I had a hard time. First the nurse couldn't get my I.V in so they sent in another nurse to do it. It took a little while for the anesthesiologist to place the epidural because I had a hard time staying still. I felt quite nauseous and faint during the procedure. Afterwards, I felt much better. I am always so so impressed by the women who don't have an epidural, I don't think it's in me, haha! So we just chilled out for awhile, I sent Aaron to get some breakfast.

Around 11 a.m, I had a small leak of amniotic fluid. Ten minutes later my water broke. I actually felt it, it was kind of like a pop. Such a weird sensation. Last time with Emery I didn't notice that it had happened. When it burst they discovered meconium in the waters (meaning the baby had pooped in utero, this usually happens because the baby is in distress). When this happened, I was sort of freaking out but trying to remain calm. During the whole labour I kept repeating this bible verse in my head , "I sought the Lord, and he answered me. He delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to Him are radiant, their faces are never covered in shame." Psalm 34:4-6. Praying that verse over and over really helped me so much during this labour. So after they discovered the meconium, the baby's heart rate was normal so they were just going to keep an eye on it. My blood pressure started getting quite low so they gave me some medicine for that. The doctors came in around 11:45 to check how things were progressing. They discovered that the baby was sunny side up. They sent in a resident doctor who attempted to turn the baby but had no success. We hung out for awhile waiting to push. I found this so stressful, I was never quite sure if I felt ready to push or the pressure to. The nurse got me to start pushing around 12:20 p.m, we pushed for awhile. The doctor on call came in and tried to flip the baby again. Every time he would try and flip the baby, it would just flip back. The Baby's heart rate was dropping so the Dr decide we had to go in for an emergency c-section.

It was very scary, it all happened so fast. The doctor really rushed all the nurses, and everyone who was working. It felt like I was on an episode of Greys Anatomy as they were pushing me down to the O.R. I closed my eyes the whole time just praying that verse in my head over and over again. I got separated from Aaron till they prepped me and the room for surgery. While they were getting me ready, I asked a couple of nurses if I could hold my baby right after. I could tell the one nurse was going to say it was ok but the other nurse piped up and said no. Finally Aaron got to come in and it was pretty emotional finally getting to seem him again. We were both so scared. They started the procedure. I couldn't feel anything but just a tugging/pulling sensation. It was pretty uncomfortable and made me pretty nauseous. It happened really fast, and we heard the baby crying. I yelled out "What is it?", and the doctor replied "it's a boy!" I mean the hubby and I were already crying but I'm pretty sure we were both sobbing at this point. Also it turns out the cord had been wrapped around his neck three times which is why he kept flipping back every time they tried to turn him.

Birth Story

marble baby swaddle

Birth story

Birth story

The nurses took him over to the little bed to wipe him down, check him out, etc. It was really hard for me to him. Aaron went with them to meet him. He was born at 1:46 p.m, 7 pounds 14 ounces, and 20 inches long! Born exactly one week early, just like his big sister. Aaron then brought him over to me. He was beautiful with a head full of dark hair! At this point, Aaron got to hold him skin-to-skin. I am so grateful that Aaron was able to do this, but I also to this day still can't understand why I couldn't have held him. The very nice anesthesiologist took pictures with my phone which was so awesome. While Aaron was holding him they they discovered he was having trouble breathing. So they rushed him up to the NICU, Aaron went with him. The anesthesiologist thought that the phone he was using was Aaron's so he ran after him to give him my phone. I was to doped up and exhausted to say anything. It felt like it took a very long time for them to stitch me up. When they were finally done, the doctor told me that if I ever wanted to have more kids that I would have to have a c-section. He said they had discovered something or something along those lines that meant I would't be able to have a v-bac again. I was so drugged that I knew I wasn't going to remember exactly what he said. I finally got wheeled to my recovery room with the sweetest nurse. I was in there for a couple of hours and had no contact with Aaron & our baby since he had both of our phones. This was so incredibly hard being separated from them, and still not holding my baby. The nurse kept calling for me to check in on them. Finally Aaron & our baby made their way back to where we were. Turns out that he didn't need any intervention that skin-to-skin with Aaron was the right medicine. I'm so glad that Aaron was able to do that. Little man was so hungry, and thankfully latched right away. That was something I was so anxious about as Emery had lots of trouble. We finally got to head down to our room in the postpartum ward.

Birth story

Birth story

marble baby swaddle

baby going home outfit

With both of my babies, I never really had a birth plan. I just planned to go with the flow, and knew that anything could happen. In the back of my mind, I did not want a c-section. As I previously mentioned, I don't do well with anything medical so a c-section seemed like something I wouldn't be able to handle well. I'm still coming to terms with how things played out, and it was very hard the first couple of weeks. I kept replaying everything in my head and my heart just ached not being able to hold Alder right away. I'm just so grateful to God for protecting both of us, and getting that sweet boy out safely.

Alder Harland, you are our sweet little baby and we can't imagine our family without you. I could spend my whole life kissing those cheeks of yours. We love you so.








Monday, 6 November 2017

Packing Your Hospital Bag



There are so many things to do before you get ready for your new baby to come, and packing your Hospital Bag is one of them. It can be overwhelming. I'm sharing with you what I packed and worked for me. I'm breaking it down into what I packed for myself and what I packed for my baby.

What to pack in your Hospital Bag

Hospital Bag for Mama

Birkenstock Sandals: Last time I brought slippers which I threw out afterwards because of all the gross hospital germs. This time I brought these plastic Birkenstock Sandals. One because they are insanely comfy, and two because they are easy to wash. They ended up being one of my favourite things I packed because after having an emergency c-section my feet swelled up huge. These are adjustable so they could fit my sad feet.

Sephora Coconut Face Wipes: Chances are you are probably going to feel a little grimy after welcoming your babe into this world. Most likely you will be sore and not so mobile. Having these face wipes on hand were awesome. It felt so great to clean my face, and bonus they smell amazing! The mister even used them!

Pura Botanicals Overnight Watermelon Mask: I have pretty sensitive skin and find the hospital air super dry. After wiping my face clean with the face wipes, it felt amazing to slather my favourite cream on my parched skin. 

Bumble & Bumble Prêt-a-Powder Dry Shampoo: I don't about you but I sweat a lot during labor, so my hair gets greasy super fast. Last time I had a shower at the hospital, but this time I waited till I got home. I was glad this dry shampoo was in my bag. It was great being able to touch up my hair, and feel a little less gross.

Cake Nursing Bra: I usually spend lots of with my babies skin to skin at the hospital. When leaving the hospital, I like to make sure I'm wearing a comfortable nursing bra. This one from Cake Maternity is amazing, comfy and easy to use. 

Pink Blush Maternity Nursing Robe: Pink Blush is my favourite maternity line, hands down. This robe 

Pink Blush Maternity Nursing Pjs: I wish I had ordered these pjs earlier on in my pregnancy. They are crazy soft and so so comfortable for a big belly. It's nice to have something to wear in the hospital besides the gowns they give you, and I purposely picked a darker color (hello all that extra postpartum fun). 

What to pack in your Hospital Bag

What to pack in your Hospital Bag

Hospital Bag for Baby:

I packed up all the baby goodies in a separate bag, which also happened to be our diaper bag. I went with a backpack diaper bag from The Honest Company this time, and I couldn't be happier. It just makes so much more sense to have your hands free and not to have an annoying bag hitting your sides while you are trying to wrangle a toddler & look after a baby. It comes with a change mat, has five different interior pockets and comes with an insulated pocket for snacks & bottles. It's also made with 100% polyurethane vegan leather, which is awesome and is easy to wipe.

What I packed for Baby:

Wipes & Diapers: The Hospital usually has wipes and diapers for you to use, but you never really know if you will need some extra. Plus it's always better to be over prepared with babies then underprepared.

Honest Company Healing Balm: We used this with Emery, and it always worked amazing. You can use it as butt cream, hand cream, for little cuts, anything. It's amazing!

Outfits for Baby: I packed two different sleepers for our baby in sort of gender neutralish prints. I packed two different sizes. The Hedgehog sleeper was from Max & Maude, and was a newborn size. The Elephant sleeper was from Finn+Emma and was a size 0-3 month. You never really know if your baby is going to be a little on the chunkier size so it's good to have both options. I packed a little sweater as well in case it was cooler out since it was fall.

Bow Headband: I packed this cute little bow headband from North Kinder just in case we were having a girl, since it was going to be a surprise.

Marble Swaddle & Toque: This matching swaddle and newborn knot toque from Wylo & Co. was one of the first things I bought when I got pregnant. I just adore the print & both are so soft. I think I had a few extra burp clothes thrown in the bag as well.

What to pack in your Hospital Bag

I also packed:
-Snacks for hubby and me (Gatorade, Granola Bars, Protein Bars)
-Heat Bag
-Water Bottle
-Pillows (The Hospital Pillows suck)
-Cameras (DLSR & Instant Camera)
-Phone Chargers
-File Folder (For any documents & papers for the baby)


What did you pack in your Hospital Bag? What are your must-haves and your could do withouts? I love hearing what everyone brings!

<3 Kastles 
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
SaveSaveSaveSave
Friday, 3 November 2017

Emery's Beauty and the Beast Themed Birthday Party



Beauty and the Beast Toddler Birthday Party

If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you might know how obsessed my daughter is with Beauty & the Beast. We must have listened to that CD & read numerous versions of the book a million times by know. So it only made sense to throw her a Beauty and the Beast themed Birthday party. 

Hux Baby Chambray Dress

Emery was just so excited about her birthday party, it was so special to watch her take in the day. I was so happy to find this beautiful Belle inspired dress from Max & Maude. If you live in the Edmonton area, you need to go check out their boutique. It is my favourite baby/kids store, and I always go there to get Birthday presents. They carry so many of my favourite brands, including lots of awesome independent brands too!

DIY Donut Wall

I've been admiring doughnut walls for some time, so this was the best excuse to make one. Not to mention indulge in some delicious doughnuts. We just got a sheet of white pegboard from Home Depot and a couple of skinny wooden dowels. Make sure to check the dowels fit in the holes before hand. Our dowels were a little bit smaller than our holes. Aaron cut the pegboard in half, and cut the dowel into smaller pieces. We then hot glued the dowels into the holes on the pegboard. Make sure to plan out your spacing of the dowels beforehand. We just bought a couple of donuts to use as spacers for guessing. 

Beauty and the Beast Toddler Birthday Party

I used some of my vintage books for decoration since Belle loves to read. As well as vintage tea pot and tea cup to hold flowers. This was a nod to Mrs.Potts & Chip. We ordered our doughnuts ahead of time from Doughnut Party. Still dreaming about them, so tasty!

Doughnut Party Edmonton

When I saw these Beauty and the Beast inspired finger puppets on Etsy by Marys Daughter, I knew they would be the perfect touch for the party. They also doubled as a present for the Birthday Girl. They are beautifully made, and I love that they can be an Heirloom that can be passed down one day. She also has tons of other sets of finger puppets, including other Princesses, Ninja Turtles, and more! We stuck little wood dowels in them so they would stand up. The puppets & finger puppets would make the most amazing Christmas gifts. I already have a few in my cart.

Hux Baby Chambray Dress

Beauty and the Beast Cake

I am beyond blessed and have the most amazing best friend ever who made this beautiful cake. We kept it simple with a rose and glass dome, similar to the rose the Beast has in the movie. It was delicious and perfect.

Anthropologie Steffy Bell-Sleeve Blouse

This little guy was so good at his sisters party! 
He's wearing a Von Bon Apparel shirt I got from Little White Sneakers, and I am wearing the Steffy Bell-Sleeve blouse from Anthropologie. 

Mrs.Potts & Chip puppets

Beauty and the Beast Themed Toddler Birthday Party

The Rose Gold sign I made use a cute kit I got at HomeSense. It came with a ton of letters so you can make all sorts of words, and re-use them. I just picked a line from one of the songs in the movie.

Beauty and the Beast masks

These two just make my heart melt. 

Beauty and the Beast masks

Beauty and the Beast Toddler Birthday Party

Snacks for a toddler birthday party

I had to have a few healthy options to balance out the doughnuts right, haha?
A yogurt bar was easy & yummy. I just grabbed a couple tubs of yogurt, fruit, and granola from Costco. I also grabbed a pack of apple sauce squeeze packs which babies & toddlers always love.

Belle felt mask

The prettiest Princess I know.


For the party favours I found classic Disney books at the Dollar store and tied ribbon around them. Belle loves books & reading so I thought this was a fitting party favour.

Anthropologie Steffy Bell-Sleeve Blouse

It was such a blast to throw this party for Emery! She had the most amazing time, and we all felt so blessed by all the love for this girl. What kind of birthday parties have you thrown? Any princess parties?

<3 Kastles

Party Details:
Doughnuts from Doughnut Party
Rose Gold "Tale as Old as Time" sign from HomeSense
DIY Pegboard Donut Wall 
Classic Disney Books Party Favour from Dollarama
Yay Napkins by MeriMeri from HomeSense
Vintage Books 
Vintage Teapot and Teacup

SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave
Powered by Blogger.