Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Review: Boon Flair High Chair

Rundown:
  • Retails for $279.99.
  • 50lbs weight limit.
  • Five-point harness.
  • Website: boon Flair
Pros:
  • No cracks. No crevices. You can really clean up after a meal. Nothing has to be thrown in the washing machine. You can wash up the two piece tray in the sink as well as the pad. Then take a damp wash cloth to the chair itself - don't forget the base because food is always dropping on it. I've even hosed the whole thing off after a particularly messy meal.
  • A smaller tray. So when Turtle is trying to grab a slippery piece of food she can reach the entire surface of the tray as well as use the lip to stop the food from sliding more. And, you can put the cover in the dishwasher - I don't, but you can. Plus, there are two tray covers. Who doesn't like options? The cover pops on top of the tray, and the hubs discovered a nifty trick of slipping a little bit of the bottom edge of Turtle's bib between the two so she can't yank it up every 5 seconds.
  • The continuous height positioning with pneumatic lift. You can raise and lower the seat so your child can sit level with any table. Ours was originally slightly higher than the table, but Turtle could push against it with her toes and was constantly 4 inches from the table. It was lowered, problem solved. This high chair is always the perfect height.
  • Five point harness and safety post. Turtle was still a little wobbly when she started sitting in the high chair around five months. But, she can sit up on her own easily now. The safety post is quite awesome. There is no sliding down and out the bottom of the high chair. And, when I take off the tray she can't immediately suicide herself onto the floor. I'm thinking this is pretty standard in high chairs now, but my grandmother thinks it is the cat's pajamas.
  • Glides smoothly in all directions. I wheel Turtle out to the garbage can and toss out all the food bits she's rejected or lost beside her. Then I wheel her to the sink to wash her and the high chair up before wheeling it back to its home in the corner.
  • The removable pad. It looks perfectly comfortable while still being a breeze to clean.
  • It has a small footprint. It takes up less space than other high chairs. When I was comparing high chairs months ago I found a photo comparing three high chairs flush against a wall, and the Boon Flair took up the least amount of space. Sadly I lost that link to the interwebs.
  • Very simple and easy to set up.
  • It looks pretty sweet. I have the white with a blue pad, which I find very aesthetically pleasing. It is a sleek and smooth design. It doesn't scream child - the living room screams that enough. People stop by and have no idea what it is at first and then think it looks so cool after we tell them it is a high chair.
Cons:
  • The break could work a lot better. Honestly, I can't tell when the break is on or off half the time. So, it is always off but it really doesn't matter. The rolling is smooth without being too smooth. For example, Turtle can wiggle and throw herself to look over the side and it will not move like say a desk chair would. It isn't a deal breaker because even if it did work I would rarely or never use it anyway, but for the price you pay it should work.

Bottom line:
I would absolutely recommend this high chair. Other than the minor flaw of a poorly designed break, I can't say enough good things about it.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sweet Sunday

July 21st - 27th

Turtle has discovered that she can hold on to the side of the crib and nom. She can't pull herself up at the moment, but crib lowering will have to happen soon.

She can't get enough of these placemats - waving em around like she just don't care.

I wanted to vacuum before she went down for a nap. She had other plans. I looked away long enough to vacuum the kitchen, and when I looked back she was out. So, like a good mom I snapped a few pictures then put her down in her crib.

 
 The Tennessee family came down for a couple week visit. It was my uncle's birthday too, so we feasted on fish, shrimp, chicken, alfredo, and crab dip. And, for dessert mini cheesecakes! Ignore my use of a white font on top of a white background, the background was grey when I edited it and I didn't remember it would be against white on the blog. Sometimes my brain doesn't work.

Quality family floor time.

 Turtle can't crawl yet, but she can wiggle herself backwards with the best of them.

I can't get over how cute these polka dot bloomers are that the Tennessee family brought down for Turtle. She has her serious face on, but check great grandma out in the background - big ol' smile.

We take our old bread to the duck pond to feed the Ibis (I think) or Ibises since there are many. The facial expressions in this picture crack me up - weary, very weary.

Turtle went for a visit to her Godmother's to check out the nursery, and we had to try out the mamaRoo. Coolest thing ever, definitely wish we had one for those newborn months. Clearly Turtle is a bit big for it. But, two thumbs up for a super cute nursery. Now we just need a Rory to put in it.

Isn't this the most darling picture? Love the glances.

 Turtle has been working ever so hard on crawling this week. I keep watching her try and just waiting for that one time where she actually gets her legs to cooperate and moves forward. She usually just belly flops and wiggles backwards.

The pups came into the nursery to say hi to Turtle when I let them out of their cages. I think they are fond of her now. I wonder if their opinion will change when she gets mobile.

Let me dump all these toy things out so I can play with the wipes container.

Reaching.

The fam gathered one more time before they head back to Tennessee. And, just when Turtle was starting to warm up to them...

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Monthly Things - July

It feels like summer is almost over, but at the same time I know there is no end in sight to the heat so summer is really never over in Florida. Thankfully it has been wicked rainy this month, keeps things all around more pleasant. 

[1] I'm not sure I have the balls to swim with whale sharks, but it sounds so awe inspiring. [2] I live right by turtle hatching grounds but I've never actually seen them make their trip to the ocean, um cutest things ever?
 image via Lost in Travels

[1] I've always loved these DIY framed maps of the world, and this one is lovely in a baby room. [2] This is a really cute DIY mirror with spoons. I think it would look particularly fun in a young girl's room with a painted stem below it.
image via Marshalls Abroad

I love these ideas - [1 / 2 / 3]. Ombre eye liner, so fun. And, these nail lemons look so fancy yet so simple to create. I love ohdeardrea's spontaneous pizza picnic idea so much too. I would have pounced on the idea already if it hasn't been so rainy lately. Soon.

[1] There is a lot of pressure to not judge parents. And, I agree it is solid advice to not judge a parent for their well thought out choices in raising their children, such as breastfeeding vs not or co-sleeping. But, you shouldn't be afraid to judge what a parent does that puts their child in danger or harms way. I liked what My Baby Bird's had to say on the subject: "If you post pictures of your toddler riding in the front seat of your car, or you pawn your children off on other people every weekend to go out and booze, or you're making babies without gainful employment,  or you let your child tell other adults to 'shut up',  or you keep unlocked loaded weapons in your bedside table with children in the house, I'm judging you." How many times do you have to hear 'oh I forgot my baby was in the back of the car when I went shopping' or 'I cracked the window and was only going in for a minute'? Are you kidding me? You just killed your child, you deserve to be harshly punished. Some things should not be judged, and particularly mothers should remember that motherhood is not a competition, but some things absolutely should be judged.

[1] Hahaha. I can so relate to this post on taking a self portrait. I go through a similarly agonizing process taking family portraits. It was a downright pain in the bum with the two dogs, but it was an even less fun experience the one time I tried it with the dogs and Turtle. Talk about fail. Obviously I could use a remote, but I'm pretty sure my point and shoot isn't fancy enough for such extras.

[1 / 2] Both of these treats look so good. Who doesn't need a just for fun layer cake? [1 / 2] I've yet to try quinoa, but these two recipes seem like good ones to start with. [1 / 2 / 3] Muffins, rolls up, and tamale pie..oh my.

[1] I love the idea of the Color Bar. You get to create your own jewelry, and it all looks so fun and colourful. [2] Also, on the same blog I am loving this maxi, which is being given away until the 28th if you care to pop over and try your luck. [3] This skirt is the prettiest. [4] And, this dress is lovely - it has pockets, and it is even cuter cinched at the bottom. All these pieces are so perfect for the summer!

Remember this post back in May? I finally got fed up enough with my falling apart comforter to get new bedding. We almost got #5 from that post, but I read the insides bunched and that turned me off. So, the hubs and I just went to Target and did the back and forth routine in the bedding aisles for what felt like hours. We ended up with three new pillows, this comforter, these sheets in blue, and a drained husband. So far it feels like sleeping in a fluffy cloud, and a vast improvement over a comforter with holes in it.

I may have been obsessed with the Royal Baby, okay still am. I woke up that morning thinking man it would be a good day for Kate to go into labor, and then I saw she had. And, then a little prince was born. So exciting.

I was on a chick lit kick this month. I read two by Sarah Strohmeyer, The Sleeping Beauty Proposal and Sweet Love. Sweet Love was meh, but The Sleeping Beauty Proposal was pretty good - funny with a happy ending, just like a chick lit should be. I also read my first Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Ain't She Sweet, which I thought was very good. Still funny with a happy ending, but it felt like more was going on with the characters. My favourite was The Lost Duke of Wyndham by Julia Quinn - she just knows how to write a sexy male character. Downright terrible cover though. I ended the month with an adventure by James Rollins, Sandstorm. I picked it up because I wanted to read something akin to Dan Brown's Robert Langdon series, and while it was quite enjoyable it doesn't immerse you in the hunt like Dan Brown's books do so well. Although I have James Rollins' second one, Map of Bones that I'd like to read next because I've heard it is better. We shall see...
image via Goodreads

I randomly had Britney Spears' Lucky stuck in my head one day and I've been on a Britney Spears kick since then.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Turkey Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Taste: These turned out better than my expectations. So moist, messy, and mm mm good. Turtle goes nuts for zucchini and I was getting tired of roast zucchini, so when I saw this recipe pop up on Annie's Eats I knew I wanted to try it. Unfortunately, I think Turtle likes the easier to eat roast zucchini, but I thought the boats were much tastier.
Amount: Serves 4.
Time: 1 1/2 hours.
Source: Annie's Eats.

Ingredients:
  • 2 zucchini, about 6 inches long
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine, or chicken broth
  • 2-3 tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cut each zucchini in half lengthwise. Scoop out the insides, leaving a 1/4-inch thick shell, and reserving half of the insides.

In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Saute the onion and garlic until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and reserved zucchini insides and saute another 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Crumble the ground turkey and cook until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in the cooked zucchini mixture. Add the wine or broth, tomatoes, basil, and rosemary to the pan. Cook for 1 minute. Drain any fat, remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Mix in the Parmesan, egg, salt and pepper to the cooled turkey mixture. Fill the zucchini shells with the turkey mixture. Fill a baking dish with 1/4-inch water. Place the filled zucchini boats in the water pan and bake for 40 minutes, until golden brown. Remove the zucchini from the pan and serve immediately.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Christmas in July

Well, happy Christmas in July first of all. It is my favourite time of the summer, although that isn't saying much because summer is my least favourite season. I caught a few minutes of QVC during their Christmas in July sale here and there. I must say the Firefly Light Projector is rather ugly, sorry real strands of light look so much better. But, it does make me feel all warm and fuzzy when they have all the Christmas decorations displayed. I've also enjoyed a few mugs of hot cocoa, underneath the fan on full blast, and listened to a carol or two. I even thought about having a full out Christmas style feast a few months ago, but it never made it past the thinking about it stage. Maybe next year...if I remember. Clearly, I go all out.

But, the best part about Christmas in July is that it means only 5 more months until Christmas! Best. time. of. the. year. I am in love with the months of October, November, and December.  They've got the best holidays, and the best seasons, and the best weather, and the best smells, and the best foods, and the best clothes. They aren't as amazing when it is still hot in Florida, but they are still my faves even when I am sweating. Although, I wouldn't say no to a move to oh I don't know...Utah, Washington, or Wyoming.

It has me thinking about all the fun traditions I want to continue or start with Turtle.

We always have our Canadian Thanksgiving feast, although last year it was just the two of us because I was too pregnant to have the gang over. Sorry, guys. Pregnancy is such an energy suck. It is on like donkey kong this year though, so October 14th save the date!

I cannot make up my mind what I want Turtle to be for Halloween. A pink dinosaur? She is really good at making raptor sounds. Or, a pirate? Complete with a curly black wig and feathered hat, I mean come on. Or, a fox? Because, I have the hound. Or, I don't even know what...the possibilities are endless. I can, however, make up my mind about my favourite Halloween candies - Hershey's cookies and cream bars and Baby Ruths. Oh yeah. You know what I hate, handing out Halloween candy. Somehow it is always my job and some people don't understand that lights out means I have no more candy so stop knocking on my damn door. Learn proper Halloween etiquette, dagnabbit.

Then we get our second Thanksgiving feast on good ol' American Thanksgiving. I love, love, love to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in bed. Two Thanksgivings ago I was sick as a dog, so sick I couldn't even have the TV on. So, I missed the Parade. I complained about it for the rest of the year. That's how much I look forward to watching the Parade on Thanksgiving morning. I probably won't get to lounge in bed and watch it this year, what with a crawling and soon to be/already walking almost one year old keeping me on my toes, but you bet it will be on. Hopefully one year Turtle will want to crawl into bed and watch it with me...in matching pajamas.

The day after Thanksgiving the magic starts. All those Christmas decorations get put up, the Christmas music can really start to be played (I mean it won't stop me from listening to it beforehand, but it will get amped up for certain after Thanksgiving), I get to wrap presents, my favourite Hershey's kisses bell commercials start, etc. I'm already wondering if Turtle is going to try and topple the Christmas tree, or unwrap all the presents the second my back is turned. This might be the year I actually wait to put presents under the tree until Christmas eve night. I have been looking forward to making Christmas magical for my child since I was practically a child. Turtle was 23 days old last Christmas, and slept the entire morning so it doesn't count. But, this year, watch out.

I want to actually remember to have an advent calendar, and I want to do the wrapped Christmas book a day too. I want to write a letter to Santa, and bake cookies, and watch every Christmas movie, and get new Christmas pajamas, and have the best Christmas morning breakfast ever. We prefer a full on Christmas dinner feast on Christmas Eve and then the biggest badass breakfast on Christmas day. More time for toy playing that way. I know she won't remember it, but I will...and there will be 4 billion pictures to document it.

But, the best part of the holiday season is that Turtle will be turning 1 on December 2nd. I mean, you know, the hubs has a birthday then too - the 7th, but been there done that. I don't think he minds being outshone by his favourite little girl though. I've already got most of it planned out it my head. But, I'm keeping it to myself for now though so it is a surprise. And, because I may change my mind in 2 months and if I type it out I will feel obligated to stick with it. I know, I'm weird, whatever.

I suppose New Year's Eve is in there too, but it has never been that important of a holiday for me. I use to play cards with my grandma all night while watching Dick Clark and sipping on a little glass of white wine. Turtle is a smidgen too young for any of that, but when she is older hopefully that will be our little tradition too.

What is your favourite holiday tradition?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Historical-ness: Lizzy

Last time I talked about Baxter, so I'll talk about Lizzy this time.

The hubs and I brought Baxter home over the summer of 2005 and half a year later, right at the beginning of the new year, we decided to get him a playmate. Actually it was more me bugging the hubs until he agreed. I'd been fiddling around on petfinder.com. I don't recommend it if you are like me because you will end up wanting 13 new loves. And, I saw what looked like a little lady hound. So, I talked the hubs into driving over to the shelter before work to take a look.
Turns out she was bigger than Baxter, but skin and bones poor thing. Pictures are deceiving. But, when we saw her in the little dirty cage laying on the floor looking extremely pitiful there was no resisting. Walking into places like that just breaks me heart though. If I could afford it and had a few dozen acres surrounded by a nice big fence, I would definitely take the whole lot.
We told the shelter people we were interested, and we played with her in the little fenced yard. I was already sold back at the pitiful face, but when we said we had another dog at home they wanted us to bring Baxter out to see if they got along. Back home we went, a thirty minute drive, grabbed Baxter and hit the road again. Baxter and Sassy, at the time, got along fabulously. The shelter people said that Sassy didn't normally care to play with any other dogs, but she was zooming around with Baxter like they were long lost friends. So, we hurried up and signed, read, and sold our souls to the paper work gods because the hubs had to scoot off to work.
On the drive home, while Sassy sat on my lap and I freaked out that I was holding her too tightly, we renamed her Lizzy. Lizzy because my favourite book is Pride and Prejudice. Then the hubs went off to work and I went out to Petsmart and proceeded to buy out the store.
I do not do well with change. So, I spent the rest of the evening staring at Baxter and Lizzy playing just waiting for one of them to realize they hated the other and eat a face off. Spoiler: it didn't happen. By the time the hubs got off work I was a nervous mess though. I was convinced we'd made a mistake, how could we have two dogs, ohmygosh this is too much work. The hubs was basically like calm your shit. Good thing one of us is reasonable.
After I calmed my shit, I proceeded to fatten miss skin and bones up (which took years) and spoil her rotten and have a hell of a time house breaking her. Lizzy was over a year old when we adopted her, and I guess her previous owners taught her nothing other than to be scared of everything. Thanks jackasses. She wasn't completely house broken until after we moved to Colorado, which we did the following summer. She even peed on the hubs side of the bed once when she was annoyed we were petting our neighbor's pup.
Even though she probably had an unpleasant first year of her life, she is the sweetest thing. She loves people. When we go to the dog park making her rounds to all the people is her first priority. Then she smells the place over and ignores the other dogs. She tries her hardest to sit on your lap and has a limitless need for butt scratches. But, she gets startled easily and is weary of most things - laundry baskets, or basically anything raised above shoulder height. Flight is strong with her.
She loves being outside. When we lived in Colorado we had a balcony and Lizzy would sit out there shivering in the cold until I made her come back inside. Now that we live in Florida she lays out on the back porch until she is too hot to stand it and then comes inside and plops on the cool tile until she is refreshed enough to go back outside. She does this all day long. I'm not sure which place she preferred. It was too cold to sit outside all the time, but we went on many more walks and outings in Colorado. I can't be persuaded to go outside 9 months of the year in Florida for walks, but she can lay outside all she wants. It's a toss up.
She will be 9 this fall, I can't believe how old my dogs are getting. Her favourite activities are being fed, eating grass, getting love from anybody she can talk into a butt scratch, and snoring. She and Baxter are inseparable, and can really pick em up and lay em down for a solid 4 minutes of play. Pretty much they are the best pups a girl could ask for. And, they are great with Turtle. Baxter has warmed up to her and will give her kisses, and Lizzy will sit next to anybody that might pet her. Just watch out because Lizzy can sneak in a kiss faster than you can realize she is coming in for the kill.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sweet Sunday - Typical Day Edition

Wake up between 7 and 8am. Get a fresh diaper and nurse.

Wrangle the dogs out of bed and outside. Make breakfast - lots of fruit.

Change out of pjs. Fold laundry and stuff cloth diapers.

Brush teeth with mom, which she rocks at.

Play on the floor. Get beagle kisses.

Move to the jumperoo after the floor gets boring. Don't let this face fool you, she loves it.

A little poetry reading before naptime.

First nap of the day from around 10:30 to noon. Mom sits on her butt.

Hello, Sunshine! Afternoon nursing and of course a fresh diaper.

Lunch. Usually tomatoes, cucumbers, and anything else I find.

More playtime.
On the nursery floor.

And, in the jumperoo.

And, with daddy.

Quick nurse around 3, followed by the second nap of the day until 5. Mom does more butt sitting.

Dinner at 5:30, if I have my act together...so usually 6.

Time for a bath at 6:45. Followed by nursing and a good night kiss.

Phew, made it to that magical time when I can crawl into bed!