Tuesday, September 2, 2014

some (non-baby) favs

Is this blog turning into a baby blog?

I promised myself I wouldn't become one of those mothers - you know, the type that is only capable of talking about her children and how wonderful they are, 
but alas, here I am with a month of nothing but baby posts.  

To get myself out of my baby blogging rut, I thought I'd share some non-baby things I am loving right now:

For eating:

These magical globes taste exactly like their namesake.
I finished my first bag on the way home from the grocery.
Go find yourselves these jewels ASAP.

For wearing:

J.Crew sleeveless drapey top
- unbelievably comfortable and extra forgiving

For drinking:

Basically a Pina Colada 
(with all sorts of good stuff).  

For reading:

If you haven't spoiled it by 
seeing the movie already, 
do yourself a favor and read this first.
So. good.

For watching:

I am totally fascinated.
Makes for excellent no-brain-required fare
when you need a little something to keep you awake at 3am.
(And to remind yourself that it could be a heck of a lot worse...)

I'll admit - that last one pushes the non-baby envelope a bit.  Apologies.

My mom and bro are here this week to hang out.  We've got big plans for some long walks in Golden Gate park, a trip down to Stanford, and a Packers season kick-off party on Thursday.  Stay tuned!


Thursday, August 28, 2014


Last week when Stefan headed back to work, my parents and sister Gretchen came to visit and hang out.

Samantha was SO excited to meet her aunt...

...who quickly earned the title of "Baby Whisperer" for her magical ability to calm Samantha with a simple tummy rub.

Since we're pretty particular about letting Samantha be around other people before she gets her vaccinations (more on that another time), we spent lots of time hanging out at home - 
taking care of wedding to-dos for Gretchen's exciting nuptials coming up in November, 
eating delicious home-cooked meals, and 
watching some good (and not-so-good) movies.

We also took loads of long walks and had lots of lunches sitting outside at La Boulange:

Their fluffy, warm eggs are perfection on a cold, San Francisco August day :)

It felt like the week was over before it started.  Luckily, my mom and brother (!) are visiting next week to keep the babe and me company.  Samantha is already counting down the days.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

1 month!

Little Samantha is one month old today!

This morning

We are totally smitten with this little munchkin and can't imagine life without her.
(Except maybe at 3am.  Then my memory kicks in pretty well.)

Some of Samantha's favorite things at 1 month include...

Looking around at all the action.

My mom with Samantha in her fav position: 
over the shoulder so she doesn't miss out on any excitement!

Bath time.

Our first bath with her she hollered the whole time.  
As first-time parents, we were terrified the lukewarm water would 
leave her with third degree burns (obviously) and therefore subjected 
to her to one thing she definitely does not like: being cold.  
The next time around we had learned our lesson and 
she had a blast splashing around in the perfectly warm water.

...in that magic moment where we take one diaper off and are JUST about to get a clean one on.  I keep telling myself this will make potty training easy?  
Thank goodness for an in-house washing machine.

No pic as any instance of this occurrence requires two hands :)

Hanging out with dad.

After getting a bit worked up at the pediatrician
(being measured and weighed is tough work!), 
all it took was some time with Dad to calm back down.


Especially to La Boulange for a coffee and pastry.  
Samantha really likes their almond croissants.

We are having such a blast getting to know this little gal and feel quite, quite lucky that she's a relatively easy baby.  (Knock on wood!)  She of course has her moments (I do too...) but assuming she's fed and has a clean diaper, she's one happy little camper.

Happy 1-month b-day little girl!


Thursday, August 21, 2014

the nursery

When thinking about decorating the nursery, we knew we wanted something simple, neutral, and not too baby-ish.  We decided on grey and white with some punches of different pinks for good measure, but going in, we didn't have any "theme" per se.  

That was until my mother stumbled across a beautiful pink elephant quilt and our true nursery theme (pink elephants!) was born.  The motif seemed to fit - I have an odd obsession with elephants, my family adores a restaurant named the Pink Elephant down on Gasparilla Island where we know we'll spend many-a-beach vacations with little Samantha, and elephants are insanely smart creatures (which Samantha will obviously be as well :).

With the help of my uber efficient mother, we found all sorts of elephant-themed items to decorate Samantha's space.

She loves it just as much as we do!


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

2 years of marriage

August 5th marked 2 years in for Stefan and me!

How the time has flown.
And how things have changed!

Since a one-and-a-half-week old doesn't allow for fancy, extravagant dinners out, we decided to do a fancy, extravagant dinner in.  

When we were still dating and Stefan was living in Geneva, we spent many-a-weekend in the Burgundy - tasting wine and enjoying delectable French cuisine.  One of our most favorite memories was a snowy November afternoon where we decided to do a 5-course tasting lunch at Aloxe-Corton.  We dined on fresh Pate, mixed winter greens with hazelnuts, melt-in-your-mouth Boeuf Bourguignon, creamy Potatoes Au Gratin with Gruyere, Apple Tart Tatin, and a to-die-for cheese course to top it all off.  The 10+ wine pairings were just as luscious as the cuisine and we went home with multiple bottles.

For our anniversary this year, I decided to recreate the meal.  
(Since if you didn't know already, August in San Francisco = November in France.)

While I skipped the Pate and opted just for some strawberries with fresh whipped cream for dessert, we did dine on Boeuf Bourguignon, Potatoes Au Gratin, and a yummy salad.  I must say it was top-notch.
(Although I do admit it's hard to go wrong with tender beef, lots of red wine, and - of course - copious amounts of butter and cheese.)

We also cracked open one of the bottles we purchased on that snowy Saturday, which was just as scrumptious as we remembered.

It felt even more lovely and special than dinner out.  
Especially with a little someone sleeping in her bassinet beside the table.


Monday, August 18, 2014

coming home

Sadly, Stefan had to head back to work today.  We've had such a blast these past three weeks being home together with little Samantha - getting to know her little habits and squeaks, having yummy dinners in, watching movies, and establishing a quazi-routine.

Luckily, however, my parents and sister are in town this week to visit and help out.  I could not be more excited!

We were also lucky enough to have my parents come visit right after Samantha was born.  They came out the day before we went home from the hospital and took care of us getting our house in order to bring baby home.  Since I had thought we had another 2 weeks, I hadn't washed any of our baby clothes, sheets, or blankets.  Thanks Mom! :)

Because I was feeling great and Samantha was doing excellently, we left the hospital one day early so we could also have an evening of celebration at home with my parents.

Before we left, we thanked all our favorite nurses with some decadent La Boulange pastries.

My parents were waiting at our house to welcome us:

They then spoiled us with a decadent home-cooked meal which we enjoyed with a bottle of Veuve!

seared ahi tuna steaks with mango salsa, 
roasted veggies, fruit salad, and amazing grilled bread

They even got us a scrumptious cheesecake (Stefan's favorite!) to celebrate the big day:

We were sad to see them go, but knew they'd be back soon.  Details on this visit to come!


Thursday, August 14, 2014

our hospital stay

After Samantha arrived, we had a few days in the hospital for me to recover and for us to get used to life with our new little lady.  Having both been working full-time right through the day I went into labor, we felt like we were on vacation!  We hung out with our new family addition, took naps, ate yummy meals, learned lots, and spent copious amounts of time just staring at Samantha.  Nine months feels impossibly long when you're pregnant (even when you're enjoying it as I very much did!), but once she was here, it felt like we were JUST finding out she was in there.

Since we hadn't planned on having a baby for another two weeks, we did not have our hospital bags packed.  When Stefan rushed to the hospital Friday evening, in my giddy, can't-wait-to-meet-our-baby state, I told him just to bring me a toothbrush, nothing else.  No hairbrush, contacts, or a change of clothes.  

Needless to say, I rocked some oh-so-glamorous attire throughout the duration of our stay:

But I didn't mind - it was comfy and practical.  

In addition to having a private room, we could order anything we wanted to eat on demand.  Perhaps I was just famished from not having eaten real food for a day and a half or maybe I just had extra low expectations, but I thought the food was top-notch.  Stefan also indulged my coffee addiction by doing multiple Starbucks runs to complement our meals.

Super dad Stefan did all the diaper-changing, rocking, and swaddling for the first two days while I was in recovery mode.  He wanted to keep it up, but I figured I'd better learn before we got home and I needed to change a diaper too.  He's still the quicker changer among us (and has an uncanny ability to keep Samantha calm throughout).

He also made it a habit to accompany Samantha to the nursery every night for her midnight weigh-in and check-up.  

He was always the only parent in the nursery and took the time to ask the nurses all sorts of questions on the best swaddling technique, how quickly Samantha would gain her lost weight back, and what color poop was ideal.  He'd come back with excellent conversation for our breakfast the next morning. :)

Our second to last day, my parents came to visit.  It was so exciting to share Samantha with them for the first time!

On our final night in the hospital, the dining staff served us a special, celebratory dinner in our room.  We had steaks and polenta and tiramisu as Samantha happily slept in her bassinet.

Those first few days with Samantha were so precious and delectable, but they seemed to just evaporate before we could even process the fact that our sweet little baby had arrived.  As we left, Stefan commented that he was already excited to do it all again for #2.