earlier this fall we started a little day school. and by that, i mean a glorified playdate. but, regardless, we call it “school” so that we can start familiarizing her with the word and begin building a positive association with it. when looking for a little backpack for her, i wanted something classic and simple. but being that she is only 18 months, i wanted something small enough for her to carry, yet big enough to be functional. i wanted a place to pack a diaper or two, a sippy cup, a snack and a toy. after much searching, i finally found the best backpack for toddlers and we are in love with it!
with a new baby on the way and the introduction of school, i wanted my little one to have a little backpack of her own to put things in. and let’s be real, children love having their own personal place to store their toys and carry what they want to carry. and to be really real, they always want to bring along a variety of items when leaving the house. i love that we can use this backpack for school, as well as use it for a place where she can keep her little treasures. with a sibling on the way, it is really important to me that she has her space that is just hers. not to mention, it really frees up some space in our main diaper bag!
The Best Backpack for Toddlers
if you are looking for a classic and simple backpack for your toddler, you will definitely be happy with the mini pack by Swankaroo. i am always on the search for classic items for my children. items that aren’t obnoxious or splattered with characters. this sweet style created by Swankaroo is seriously a breath of fresh air and i think it’s simplicity is one of it’s most beautiful features.
to read more posts about how i style my children and the adventures we take, check out what’s trending below!
when it comes to visiting new mamas in the hospital, having a gift in your hand is one of the sweetest gestures. hospital gifts for newborn moms can be hard to think of, but bonus points if your gift spoils both the baby and the new mama. after i delivered my first baby, the things that meant the most to me where the items that not only spoiled my baby, but me as a new mama. even if that was just a hot meal or cuddling my baby so i can take a nap. because, let’s be honest…in just seconds, you become a new person when you have a baby. in just seconds, you learn to put someone before yourself and you are suddenly given a new day to day. it is during that time that sweet thoughts and kindness, and a little pampering, can mean the world to a new mama.
this post was written in collaboration with Haven + Pine, who sent me their Labor + Delivery Box 2 for free in exchange for a blog post introducing their brand new business. Haven + Pine can be found via their website, Instagram and Facebook page, so be sure to go check them out!
Haven + Pine is a beautiful company that puts together the ultimate hospital gift box for new mamas, filled with beautiful items that equally spoil both the new mama and new baby. even better, their wooden boxes are made by their husbands! not only is the box filled with some of the most thoughtful gifts, it is also a wonderful keepsake. i love using boxes like this to store baby momentos, such as cards, doctor checkups, first hospital hats, etc.
take a peek inside this beautiful box to see the stunning items that Haven + Pine puts together to create the sweetest hospital gift for newborn mamas. disclaimer: we still don’t know the gender of our baby and are waiting until birth. Haven + Pine graciously sent us two banners, for both a boy and girl and these banners can be personalized with the baby’s name, if preferred! (i used the baby boy sign within this post, only because it’s the banner that i opened first…so i am not announcing anything! but hey, maybe it is a sign!)
Hospital Gifts for Newborn Moms | Haven + Pine
the most thoughtful and memorable thing about this box is that the items within it are meant to make your hospital stay just a little more beautiful, special, and comfortable. if you have given birth before, you know that those moments with your little one in the hospital are moments you will never forget. Haven + Pine simply sprinkles more beauty and comfort into those moments.
Items Within The Labor + Delivery Haven Box (2)
a 6 layer muslin pom pom blanket | Paisley Prints Spokane
a wooden teether | Paisley Prints Spokane
a baby hat or bow | Paisley Prints Spokane
an organic hand lotion + chapstick | shop REJUV
a maternity robe | Shop Pink Blush
a strand of twinkling lights
an essential oils roller
a hand lettered baby name banner | all hand lettering by Annie Gleason
a cozy pair of socks for mama
if you are like me, you may be someone that is really hard to buy for. i am not one who likes “stuff.” it ultimately ends up being donated or clutters the house and, i think it is safe to say, we could all do with a little less stuff. gifts should be meaningful and authentic, but this can be really hard to think of, when it comes to ideas. my husband is always asking me for gift ideas, and i from him, because we are equally hard to buy for. this year, i was intentional about thinking of items that would really matter to me. and if you are scrambling for ideas, here is the best gift for mom that is bound to make her cry, happy tears.
this post was written as part of a collaboration with a family print shop and this locket was made for me at a discounted price. go check out their beautiful shop, it’s insanely beautiful.
i stumbled upon a family print shop over the summer this year and instantly told my husband about their silhouette lockets. being someone who is passionate about family and photos, this locket was the perfect idea for me. and it means more than any other necklace because it is contains something so special, my child. and soon, my second child will be on the other side.
the best thing about this locket, besides the stunning silhouette of my daughter, is that it can grow with our family. a family print shop can add children to the locket, as children are born, and that is so special to me. this locket will literally grow as our family grows, which means it will always be current and worn.
i love that this is something that will always be cherished and will be a keepsake. many gifts come and go, but this is something that truly means something and honestly is the best gift for mom. when the holidays came around growing up, my dad always reminded us, “don’t spend money just to spent money, think of what the person truly needs or would enjoy.” it’s been something that i always remember when gift giving, and sometimes that means simply asking the person what they truly need or would enjoy. for me, i enjoy nostalgia, making this silhouette locket simply the perfect gift idea.
The Best Gift For Mom – The Silhouette Locket
Letters To My Children | 18 Months + 26 Weeks (In My Belly)
friday, october 13, 2018
it seems like everything is changing so fast around our house, from mama’s growing belly to a toddler who is now walking! and while i wish time to slow down, i am also super excited that our family will grow by one more in just 14 weeks! it seems like time is going to speed up from here, as we enter the holiday season and prepare for a new year and another baby!
to my oldest:
today is your half birthday!! you are officially 18 months and it’s so hard to believe that you are already a year and a half. 8 days ago, you learned to walk all by yourself. we went to the library to get some halloween books to read at bedtime and all of a sudden you walked across the room! your daddy (who was sadly away on a business trip, but brought you home an awesome present!) was so excited when i told him and said, “no wonder her first steps were at the library, since she is in love with books like her mama is!” is all makes perfect sense! and once you started walking, you never looked back. the librarian gave you a special sticker for your baby book to mark the milestone!
after a week of walking, you look as though you have been walking forever. you are getting more and more confident each day and easily walk around the house being a little busy body. you love to climb up the stairs (with us close by you), and you love climbing up and down off of the couch. everything just got real busy in our house but we are so excited that you are walking and love the happy look on your face when you are zooming around the house.
at 18 months, your appetite has slowed way down and you only like to feed yourself. “no thanks, mama. i do it.” you are learning to feed yourself with a spoon and we are slowly making progress on drinking from a cup without a lid. although, one time you spilled water all over yourself and wanted nothing more to do with the cup. 🙂
you have become such a smartie pants and are doing things that are at a three year old level! you love to stack blocks, can easily do puzzles, match patterns, and put together your girly legos. you are also very helpful during diaper changes and hand us a new diaper, and have fits of giggles when mama tickles you. you still love reading books and bring us your favorite books from your shelf to read. i swear, we have read “big, little,” 1643820974 times but you love, love, love it. you know almost all of your body parts and love to dance! grandpa even taught you how to nod “yes!” and you do it with the funniest expression on your face!
while you are still so little, you prove to be so big. you like to lift mama’s shirt up to see my baby belly and, sometimes, poke at it. 🙂 the other day you were laying on my belly and felt the baby kick on your cheek. you looked at me with a quizzical look, wondering what could have done that! even though you are too little to really understand getting a new brother or sister, your caring, sweet and loving nature makes you more than ready to have a little sibling in the next few months.
to my littlest:
you are kicking up a storm, these days! especially first thing in the morning when mama is trying to get just one more hour of sleep or at the very end of the day when i lay down in bed. we are at the point where we can see you kicking through my belly and its always so fascinating to watch my belly bounce with your bumps.
we had a quick check up last week and you are still doing great! nothing new to report, you are growing just as you should despite mama’s tiny belly. waiting for january sometimes seems like it takes forever, but the weeks sure go by fast so we know that you will be here in no time at all! your little room is ready and waiting for you and our family is ready to spoil you to pieces! it’s so much fun to see so many people loving you so much already and we can’t wait to introduce you to our wonderful family!
mama is still feeling mostly great! i threw out my back twice in the past week, so i am under strict orders from the doctor to not lift a single thing and to rest, rest, rest. it’s been hard for me to put my feet up, because i feel that there is always so much to do but slowing down is also really nice sometimes too. your only job is to keep growing as best you can so we can meet you soon! you have a big sister waiting for you who loves giving kisses and saying “baby!”
when it comes to packing your hospital bag, everyone will tell you what must haves you will need to bring. at first, it seems a little overwhelming because you feel that you are going to wheel six suitcases into the hospital with you, but really it’s simple. for me, this is my second baby and i will be delivering at the same hospital only 20 months apart. i say this to say…i know my hospital and i feel really prepared this time. which means, this mama will not be overpacking. there are definitely some essentials that i will be taking with me for nostalgia and comfort, but for the most part i will also be realistic and know that the hospital pretty much has everything i will need. honestly, that’s their job.
when packing your hospital bag, think of items that will make you comfortable and will make things easier for you. diapers, wipes, mama pads, and bedding are all provided for you (or at least they should be), so try not to overthink and overpack. my hospital supplies all the diapers and post birth supplies for mama, so i am not going to run out and buy a bunch of that stuff to take with me. instead, i am focusing on what is going to help me and baby the most during our stay and during our travel home.
as i worked towards beginning to build my hospital bag, i collaborated with a lot of beautiful companies to bring this bag together and am grateful to the shops that sent items to be featured within this post. at the end of this post, you will find a list of all the shops that sent things for my hospital bag so definitely go check out their beautiful products!
this post contains some affiliate links, which means i get a commission for items purchased through the link. thank you in advance for supporting my blog.
Packing Your Hospital Bag : A List of Must Have Items
Hospital Bag Source List
some of these shops sent items for free to be featured within our hospital bag. a huge thank you to these shops!
mama bundle courtesy of Tubby Todd
lace nursing bra purchased from Motherhood Maternity
lactation bars courtesy of Oat Mama
multi-use cover courtesy of Copper Pearl
leather changing mat courtesy of Gathre
pacifier clip courtesy of Ryan and Rose
lace trimmed swaddle courtesy of Charley Charles
going home outfit purchased locally
Other Recommended Items To Pack
overnight items for parents
going home clothing for parents
spare clothes parents
slip on shoes (or walking slippers)
your own pillow
diaper bag prepped for ride home
don’t feel like you need to bring your entire home to the hospital. once your baby is born, you will be so focused on him or her that those one or two items that you forgot won’t be a big deal. and more than likely, the hospital has everything you need during your stay. focus on what unique items will make you to most comfortable, what items you want your baby to have during the first hours/days, and what items will get you comfortably home. and by golly, don’t forget the carseat. in fact, just put it in your car around 35 weeks pregnant…you will be happy that you did.