Thank you so much to everyone who responded to my Instagram story asking for travel tips! I received so many messages with great ideas (scroll down to see the list), and also so many people asking me to share these ideas, too... so here goes! I've tried to capture everything, but I'm sure I missed some and would love any additional ideas you guys may have in the comments. :) And sorry about the picture quality, these were all iPhone pics taken is such bad lighting!
We flew to Florida twice this winter with Parker and took two totally different approaches for each trip...
Parker was just a few weeks shy of 1 year, and we chose to fly at night (8-9pm flights).
In the airport
Parker was 15 months (not walking yet, but crawling everywhere), and we chose to fly during the day. Our first flight was super early in the morning and the return flight was mid-morning.
We are so lucky that we made it out of town for this trip. We flew out at 6:50 the morning that the biggest snowfall/blizzard of the season hit MN - and everything after us was cancelled. Thank heavens we made it out! The only bummer was that we had to get de-iced and that took 30-45 minutes and by the time we were done being de-iced, my "bag of tricks" (food, games, etc.) was almost completely out of things because he had already gone through them all.
In the Airport -
I took the same approach this time flying with Parker as I did above with a few differences.
On the Plane -
FIRST TRIP VS. SECOND TRIP
Overall, the flights went fine both times. I think I would attempt to travel either way next time, but maybe lean toward a night flight because a sleeping toddler is way easier than a busy one that gets bored very quickly. Once P is at the age where he can watch a show/movie on an iPad, flying during the day will probably be more the attractive option.
I know this was kind of a hodge podge of info, but hopefully it'll help someone out who plans to fly with a busy toddler sometime soon!
Other ideas that people sent me (THANK YOU!!):
We are so excited to share the big news that Parker is going to be a big brother this fall! All glory be to our Father for this wonderful blessing.
We had just finish making our plans for our frozen embryo transfer (FET), and put our down payment down and I was on cycle day 30 so I took a pregnancy test at the doctor's office to make sure we weren't pregnant. It came back negative, so now it was just time to wait for my cycle to start so we could get things rolling with my medication protocol.
About one week later my period still hadn't come so I took a home pregnancy test for fun and BAM two bold pink lines appeared right away. I was in shock! I yelled to Todd and he literally yelled back "are you pregnant?" - it's like he knew. What a miracle from God! I have never been pregnant without the assistance of fertility medications, so this was truly such a wonderful surprise.
I want to thank my BSF small group and my mom's morning small groups for praying for us to conceive and that our little one is healthy. They are my prayer warriors and I am so grateful for this answered prayer! It's going to be so fun to see Parker become a big brother this fall!
I was so honored to be part of Home Bunch's "Beautiful Homes of Instagram" blog series. I wanted to share the pictures from our (partial) home tour on my blog, too! There's a ton of content, so I've decided to break it up into two different posts - this one features our main level. Most of the photos below were shot by the amazing Nicole Autumn (a few are from my camera roll, too).
A HUGE thank you to Ampersand in the Galleria and Tonkadale for providing me with tons of merchandise to style my home with. I've tried to link everything in the photos, but if you have any questions, please let me know. For those of you asking about my front door color, I am still trying to figure it out. Sorry!
Entry Light | Personalized Doormat
Paint from Fine Paints of Europe
One of my favorite transformations in our home was our front entryway. We changed the exterior color of our home to white shake, and replaced our 7’ solid wood doors with 8’ french doors adorned with big windows that lets the morning light pour into our home. I didn’t want to paint the doors white because I felt like that was a little too matchy-matchy, so I opted for my favorite color, grey, and I love the way it turned out! It’s a great contrast against our all-white home.
Prior to our remodel our main level was divided by a three-quarter-length high wall, closing off the kitchen from the formal dining and living room. This new, open floor plan has really opened things up and makes our home feel much larger than before.
Drapery, and all furniture is from Restoration Hardware.
I've linked similar items here: Coffee Table, Chairs, Pink Throw Pillows
I made the moss bowl with materials from Tonkadale nursery.
Paint Color: Harbor Gray by Benjamin Moore
Table & Chairs - Restoration Hardware - Similar table Here, Dining Chairs here, and End chairs here | Lighting | Plates
Flowers from Ampersand and Tonkadale
Our dining room serves as both our casual and formal dining space, so I was very mindful of this when selecting the furniture and lighting so that I could make it function for both purposes.
I kind of cringe when I see how matchy matchy our dining room chairs and barstools are. I thought it would be a good idea to have them the same, but I'd really like to change out our barstools some day to create a nice, complementary contrast.
Chandeliers | Sink | Faucet and Side Spray
Hardware: Knobs & Pulls: Alno Inc Creations, Charlie’s 6” Brass Pulls (3” for smaller drawers), knobs are Charlie’s 1.25” knos and 1.25” backplates in antique English
Countertops & backsplash: Honed Carrara Marble (yes, I'd do it again, I love our counters!)
Cabinet paint color: Extra White by Benjamin Moore
Prior to our remodel, we had a white and grey kitchen, but it was really dated. I fell in love with blogger Rachel Parcell’s kitchen - the oversized range hood and open shelving with a marble backsplash that ran to the ceiling. I loved every detail so I worked with my builder to incorporate as many elements of that inspiration as possible into our space.
Hooks | Knobs | Pulls
I was still waiting from the other hardware to arrive (it didn't make it for the photo shoot so that's why the drawer is missing a pull in this picture).
A little bit more about me & what I shared on the home bunch blog:
I have loved houses ever since I was a little girl. I remember when I was growing up my mom and I would go on car rides to the fancy neighborhoods to look at pretty homes, and I always felt so inspired. Growing up I always thought I would do something dealing with homes, but when I went off to college I decided to go the business route, instead of channeling my love for homes and my creativity. Later on, when I met my husband and moved into his home, we started talking about doing some remodeling. We had plans drawn up, but it wasn’t until after we were married that we decided to pursue them. My husband had bought a great home in a wonderful neighborhood, very close to where we both grew up, but it was a dated ranch style home that definitely needed some TLC. He had demoed our whole lower level so it was down to the framing and cement floors, so a big chunk of our home wasn’t even functional. After weighing our options, we made the decision to turn his home into our home, a place where we’d raise our children, and that reflected our needs and personal style (instead of moving).
Designing our home was such an incredible experience for me. I spent hours searching through blogs and pinning spaces I loved on Pinterest, and enjoyed every second of it. Gathering all of this inspiration enabled me to create an overall vision for our home, and translate that into each and every room, and then watch it all come to life. I was truly in my element during the whole process. It has been about two and-a-half years since we remodeled our home, and we have since welcomed a baby boy to our family. I decided to leave corporate America when we had him and just recently decided to launch my own company as an independent decorator (@parkergreyinteriors) so I can help others create beautiful, functional spaces they love, too. The company is named after my son and my favorite color, grey. I’m so excited to see where this new opportunity takes me!
Our home underwent a big transformation from a dark and dated ranch style home, to a bright and airy, traditional home with hints of a modern farmhouse, too. I love clean, uncluttered spaces, and lots of neutrals with a hint of greenery and/or fresh flowers. Every single day (no joke!) I look at our home and wonder how I can make the space even more beautiful... with wall coverings, decor, furniture, etc. I spend a ton of time reorganizing the open shelves in the kitchen, and rearranging the built in shelves in our master. I just love making our space perfectly tailored to our style and am always striving to improve it.
We have two additional levels in our home that are not pictured, our lower level which is mostly filled with kids toys, and our basement level that is unfinished. Hopefully I can share those spaces in the future! Thanks so much for taking a look at our home and I'll post the second part with our upper level soon!
,Around about 1 year, Parker finally started to love food. And now he actually only wants to feed himself! He doesn't like it when I try to feed him, so I am sooo happy with all of the progress we've made. We were really close to having to go to occupational therapy, which would've been just fine, but I'm glad we were able to make progress on our own and avoided having to do that. To continue to expose him to different tastes, textures, etc I have tried a ton of different foods with him, cut up in different sizes and shapes.
So this Valentine's Day I thought it would be fun to do something a little festive (I love all the holidays) - and wanted to share our little activity for anyone else who may be interested. Warning - it does get messy, so the splat mat is a must! But he had a lot of fun.
What you need:
I made the Jell-O as directed on the package, chilled it for several hours and then cut out the Jell-O with the heart shaped cookie cutters. To removed it, I used a spatula and put it on his highchair and let him go to town! It didn't matter if he just played with it or ate it, and he had a ton of fun. We bathed him right after, because it gets super messy! (PS some of my hearts look a little more like blobs, but oh well.)
High Chair - IKEA (BEST $20 ever spent!) - and it's white and gray. My jam.
Splat Mat - Gathre x Studio McGee, Buffalo Check
Have you ever felt a strong nudge or "gut feel" to do something? When that happens, I believe it's the Holy Spirit working within us, and amazing things can happen when you listen, even if you're scared. God will be with you and bless you along the way. I had a really incredible experience of this recently that I wanted to share, hoping that it may inspire someone to make amends or to act on something the Spirit has been pushing you to do.
Back in December before the holidays, I had a very strong feeling that I should reach out to an old friend from college, whom I had had a falling out with. I think it had been 11 years since we had a fight that ended up spiraling into a full on falling out. I have felt so guilty about it ever since I graduated. This nudge to reach out to her has come and gone over the years, but for some reason it came on really strong in the fall and then when Christmastime came around, I finally had the courage to act. It's scary to admit your wrongdoings (even if only to yourself), put your tail between your legs and ask for forgiveness, especially when it's been so long. I honestly can't even remember why we had a falling out, but I know that I said and did hurtful things, and I'm not proud of them. I am truly remorseful and regret those things, and unfortunately, I cannot take them back. I wanted to sincerely apologize to her and hoped that she would forgive me for acting the way that I did. I sure wasn't my best self back in those days, and am very grateful that I've had the opportunity to make many positive changes in my life since then, and credit those to my faith & husband.
After lots of prayer, I finally mustered up the courage to write her an email. It was short and sweet and from the heart, and I meant every word I said. When I hit send, it was scary... what if she doesn't respond? What if she doesn't have the same desire to make amends? It was one of those moments where you just hope that you get a message back soon, and to my surprise, I did. I was nervous to read it, but to my delight it was a warm reply, and we exchanged a few notes back and forth, and we even set up a lunch for the next month.
When we met for lunch, it was honestly so wonderful to see her. We caught up over a long lunch and it was so nice to hear about everything she's been up to and where her life has taken her. In the midst of our lunch she shared some personal news with me, something I was able to relate to her on, on a deep and intimate level, and it truly felt like this is why God has brought us back together again. It was so wonderful to leave that lunch and see how God is constantly at work in our lives.
It was a powerful experience for me to go through - admitting how ugly some of the things I did were, to ask for forgiveness and then to make amends. It wasn't pleasant to admit these things or relive them, but it was a situation that was and has been heavy on my heart and I needed to go through this process to try and find resolution and healing. And He provided that in a powerful way, greater than I ever expected. I'm so grateful for the rekindling of this relationship and for this experience. Praise be to God!
I never intended to blog about this, but it was such a powerful experience for me, I felt compelled to share it.
What is the Holy Spirit pushing you to do? Are you listening? How will you respond? I'd encourage you to listen to the Spirit, even when it may seem tough or hard. He will be with you along the way.
Hi! I'm Lindsay, a new mama to our little boy, Parker. I started my blog as a way to channel my creativity and document our life happenings. From the pretty, styled shots to the real, raw experiences, too, like our journey to start our family. I love to share about my faith, my personal style for interior decorating, holidays and entertaining & for our little guy. too. Thanks so much for stopping by and for your support. XO