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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Introducing {Baby Joey}

Boy oh boy! First Blake, then Evan, and now Joey. Everyone is having baby boys! With a new family of 4, in one room for 3 hours, with a 2.5 year old and 2 week old, we made it out in peace! Meet Baby Joey...

As you can see from the smile on his face, being tightly swaddled is just about the most comfortable thing for a newborn baby...

But I don't think he was feelin' this adorable handmade knit hat...

After shooting their holiday card portraits a few months ago, Big Sister was excited to take pictures with me again! 

And she sure loves her Baby Joey.

Well hello there, handsome...

Beautiful new mama of two...

And proud papa with his baby boy...

In the last hour, Baby Joey was so tired and finally able to fall into a deep sleep. 

After he found a comfortable position, look at all the squishy rolls that appeared!

Sleep tight, Baby Joey. Before we know it, you'll be keeping up with your big sis! And no, big sis. We cannot put him back in mommy's belly!

To see more newborn, baby and family lifestyle portraits, click here.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Superhero Birthday Party & DIY Capes

Given that Elijah and Noah were superheros for Halloween, it's no surprise that a Batman/Superhero party was all one little boy wanted. Christine easily decorated her son's 4th birthday party for less than $20.

One tip I give when providing party plans is to shop your house. Christine perfectly used this tip where 90% of her decor consisted of the boys' superhero toys that are normally strewn about the house. When perfectly lined up and staggered with old fashioned paper bricks, they make quite an impact!

Christine used $1 reusable shopping bags to hide the bookshelves. Great, smart find! And functional after the party? Even better!

Christine put together super simple giveaways that pleased the 1-4 year olds (and parents because it wasn't useless crap) while doubling as decor.
For more details about Christine's superhero party decor and toddler party games/activities, check out her posts here and here.

When we received Christine's invitation, I told Mia I'd make her a cape to be a superhero. To which she replied, "No I dress like a princess." Despite topping off Belvedere and champagne bottle service for a 30th birthday the night before, this mama was determined to DIY three superhero princess capes the morning before the party.  

I barely made it, but I did it! Three no-sew DIY girly superhero capes. To make the purple ones, all I did was cut a rectangle from fabric with pinking shears (so it doesn't fray) and cut two slits in the corner where I could string ribbon in the front to tie the cape shut. To add some more bling to Mia's princess cape, she used a large hair clip through the slits as a closure instead of ribbon. The stars on the back are cut from felt and glued on. Easy. Peasy. FREE - my fave.

Another party planning tip I give moms is to think outside the box. For the pink cape....well that was crafted from an old tank top of mine...
I didn't do a thing to it! Didn't even cut it! Nada. Nothing. I just turned it inside out so the satin/shiny side was out and glued the star on. It's a good thing I don't throw anything away with hopes it can be used for some craft eventually!

Happy birthday Elijah, we had fun at our first dress up party! And we definitely enjoyed 3 slices of this cake the next day.

Have a great weekend! I'll be spending the morning with another newborn baby boy and the evening at our last holiday party. I'm bringing stuffed mushrooms and pizza puffs. What're you up to?? Bundle up because it's about to be 15 degrees in Chicago!!

linked up with Tatertots and Jello

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Introducing {Baby Evan}

Before the holidays, a friend contacted me about gifting a newborn family portrait session to her brother, sister-in-law and new nephew. Umm, yes please! I can't think of a better gift for a new family! Would you like to meet Baby Evan?
Family from Hawaii sent beautiful quilts so the newest addition could snuggle up with love from afar.

Being half Chinese, Evan was born in the year of the dragon. And has this little dragon from his uncle and necklace from his grandmother to show for it.

I'm not sure why, but Asian babies always have such soft spiky hair. Love it! And the hair color of half Asian babies is always a gorgeous shade of brown that is to die for! 

As with all newborn sessions, there's bound to be some crying. But that always makes for picture perfect hugs and kisses.

Even the dog, Bailey, wanted some love.

During the entire session, Evan peacefully drifted in and out of sleep and would be wide awake one minute...

...And fast asleep the next...
...With the exception of his wardrobe changes. This boy did not like being naked!

Evan calmed down in no time with the slow and steady sway of an irreplaceable heirloom - his dad's bassinet made by his great grandfather.

And incredibly soft baby toesies.

Congratulations you guys! Baby Evan was just the perfect package to arrive before the holidays.

I hope the hustle and bustle of the holidays wasn't too exhausting!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Good Night Chicago Book - Complete!

How was your weekend? Mia caught whatever's been going around and has a fever and runny nose. To rest up, today was full of cuddling and reading books, including this one...
Love this full bleed cover! What city's skyline beats Chicago's?! {photo taken from the Shedd Aquarium patio} 

I was soooo excited to give Mia {and Doug} this Christmas present!

After 2.5 years, our very own version of the Good Night Chicago children's book is complete! Since Mia was a baby and my sister in law gifted us the Good Night Chicago book, it was my goal to explore our city and take pictures of her at each landmark to recreate her board book. Surprisingly, we actually made it to all the spots mentioned in the book before Mia turned 3!

I made my wedding guest book with and used it again to customize this keepsake photo book for my daughter.

It melted my heart today when Mia told me she wanted to read it again because she loves it. I may only have her first year of photos in an album (2 years behind, eek!), but at least I can cross this project off my list! I hope she cherishes this book even when she's older.

Click here to catch up on all the pictures from our DIY book.