Baby Talk: Baby E at Seven Months Old

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

Our internet was down earlier without reason so I gladly stole some extra baby snuggles and spent some time thinking about this post. We’ll jump right into the cliches as I proclaim that I can’t believe that little Baby E is already seven months old. Really, how does it go so fast? Even when you know the time is going to fly, that each stage is fleeting, that every phase is finite, somehow, it still seems to pass in a blur. Sometimes it’s a blur of sleepless nights and spit up. Sometimes it’s a blur of giggles and hand clapping. Mostly we’re experiencing primarily the latter these days, although I still wear baby puke on my clothes far often than I should admit. And unless it’s a really bad one, I don’t even bother changing anymore. Keeping it really classy here today, friends. At any rate, it has been a couple of months so I wanted to take a minute and share a baby update with you! The last time around, E was five months old and I was struggling to find my groove. Now we’re seven months old and so so much has changed!

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

Because her birthday was so near to Thanksgiving, her one month checkup would have fallen right around Christmas and therefore got pushed into the new year so all of her appointments have happened behind schedule. All of that being a long winded way of saying that her six month appointment and shots aren’t until this Friday, which is actually ten days or so after she turned seven months old. All of that also being a long winded way of saying I don’t have her latest weight and length stats to share, but I can guarantee we’re still going to be at well over the 90th percentile for length. Our already long-limbed girl has been growing like a weed in recent weeks (although we still don’t have any teeth) and I swear it seems already like she’s transforming from baby to toddler in a way that makes me cry. Literally. Like three times a week. I’m officially that mom. She’s now rolling over easily, sitting up on her own, eating lots of homemade organic veggies and fruits 2 to 3 times a day, mimicking you if you clap to her, paying attention when you turn the pages during story time, sleeping on her belly at night and logging a lot of hours jumping in her bouncer. Every so often it even seems like she’s starting to hug you back when you squeeze her close and she seems to understand what kisses are, even if she’s not yet giving them back. Lately she’s been sleeping clear through the night from about 8 o’clock until 7 o’clock in the morning, always in her crib in her room all on her own like a big kid. Like I said. She’s basically barely even a baby anymore.

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

I’m sure all parents think so, but we’re pretty convinced that this tiny little girl is smart. Like, smart smart. She appears to really get things and understand them quickly. She is perpetually curious and is constantly observing what’s going on around her. If it’s watching her big siblings play or checking out the dog or people watching when we’re visiting friends, she is like a little sponge soaking it all up. She is also easily the happiest, friendliest baby I’ve ever seen, readily giving of her big, infectious slightly lopsided grin. Sometimes she just wants her mommy, as babies do, but for the most part she is seemingly content to be social and doesn’t much mind being passed around a room. When her big siblings get home or Daddy comes home after a long week of work (because he’s still gone Monday morning until Friday evening most weeks), she gets outright gleeful, clapping her hands and reaching for them eagerly. She babbles and sings and makes bird-like chirps and noises (mostly resembling those of a pigeon) for hours, a constant stream of da-da-da and ma-ma-ma and na-na-na happening around the clock. And, guys, that giggle. If you have a tiny baby who isn’t laughing yet, or you’re pregnant or you’re longing to be a mommy, I promise you that those baby giggles are everything. You can be wearing crusty puke speckled clothes with bags under your eyes for days, but that giggle will solve all of your woes.

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

This past weekend we took her on her first picnic and she also got to go to the beach for the first time and go swimming! I snapped all of these photos on my iPhone 6s and edited them on my favorite app (A Color Story) and they were too cute not to share. We’ll be taking more family portraits soon with Alice (we’re trying to do them every few months for the first couple of years of her life as she’s changing so quickly), but I also chase her around daily taking photos. She has been loving being outside so far this summer since things really warmed up and got sunny. Yesterday after her little dip in the water she was content to simply lay on her beach blanket and play with her hands and toys, and pull grass and toss it around. We’re looking forward to taking her camping and boating and kayaking all summer long! Honestly, we’re at a stage right now where it all feels a like too quick. A little too temporary. This age is so fun and so so rewarding (when some of the early months you’re just trying to survive) that I sincerely wish with all my heart that I could pause time for even just a little while. I’m not ready for her to crawl or walk or talk, because I want so badly to savor the sweetness that she radiates every day right now. I’m doing my best to hang on tight and enjoy the ride. Certainly she is my greatest adventure yet!

Baby Talk | Seven month old baby update from @cydconverse

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Baby’s Outfits –
Floral dress from Old Navy | Straw sun hat from Old Navy | Cherry bikini from Target | Picnic blanket DIY tutorial

[Photos by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion.]

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10 Cool Creatives to Follow on Snapchat

10 Cool Creatives to Follow on Snapchat | Click through or pin for later to get to Snapchat tips and recommendations for who to follow on Snapchat from @cydconverse

Over the last few months I’ve mentioned spending a lot more time on Snapchat, which has taken me by surprise! About a year ago I played around with it and I just didn’t get what the hype was all about. So I deleted the app off my phone and that was that…until it wasn’t. For whatever reason earlier this year I decided to give it another go and low and behold, I fell in love. It is very quickly becoming my favorite social media platform! That said, a common critique I hear from new users is that they don’t know who to follow on Snapchat or how to find people to follow. Admittedly because the app doesn’t have any kind of general or public feed, it can be a little tricky. Again, I think that’s actually part of the intentional design of the platform, forcing you to seek people out, so today I thought I’d share my short list of 10 cool creatives to follow on Snapchat. (Additionally, don’t forget you can use Snapchat to search your contacts in your phone if you want to connect with more people you know in real life, too! I always forget that. Oops!) Click through for some of my favorite Snapchatters and feel free to give me a follow, too! My username on the snaps is cydconverse and I’ve been updating more frequently, so if you’re curious about what’s happening in reno land or what I have brewing for posts behind the scenes, that is where you’ll find it!

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Classic Vodka Martini with a Twist

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

As a rule I like to keep a well stocked bar at our house at all times for a few different reasons. The primary of those reasons, far and away, is because I really love being able to mix a guest’s drink of choice on a whim. Generally speaking if you keep a good array of spirits and mixers around, you’ll be able to do that or at least come up with a close second. In addition to keeping the bar stocked, over the last couple of years I’ve taken to wanting to perfect my hand at some of the classic cocktail recipes that were probably a bit too sophisticated for my youth. Think martinis, Manhattns, Old Fashioneds, Negronis and the like. So today, I’m sharing my version of a pretty perfect vodka martini. I like mine shaken so it’s super cold with a twist. As it turns out, I also love a good gin martini, dirty with lots of olives. Total opposites. Both amazing in different ways. If you’re new to true martinis (as in, not the kind loaded with chocolate and syrups and sweet liqueurs) beware that they are surely meant for sipping lest you want to fall down after just one drink. Not a good look anyone, friends. Do with this information what you will, but herewith I present you with one very ladylike vodka martini with a twist. Cheers!

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

Classic Vodka Martini with a Twist

  • 4 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce dry vermouth
  • Lemon for garnish

Fill a cocktail shaker to the top with ice. Add vodka and vermouth, then shake until the shaker is super cold to the touch. Optionally, add a small squeeze of lemon to the shaker before shaking. Pour chilled vodka mixture into a martini glass and garnish with a lemon twist or slice. For a super chilly drink, you can opt to chill your martini glasses for 15 – 20 minutes prior to mixing your drink.

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

How to Make a Vodka Martini with a Twist | Cocktail recipes, entertaining ideas and party ideas from @cydconverse

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[Art direction + styling by Cyd Converse | Photos by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]

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12 Festive Red, White + Blue 4th of July Recipes

4th of July Cupcakes | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

Following that one particularly sparkly and festive holiday in December, the 4th of July is very easily my favorite holiday. I’m pretty sure it’s because I love summer, but I’m also pretty sure it’s because I am kind of a fireworks fanatic. Plus all that red, white and blue patriotic spirit gets me right in the feels, friends. Little kids with faces painted with sparkly red and blue stars? I am all about that life. I kind of wish I were one of those kids. (Is 33 too old for face paint?) So today, to kick off the run up to the 4th of July, we’re talking about 12 of the most patriotic 4th of July recipes going. I’ve got all of the red, white and blue foods rounded up right here. Pin ’em for later and enjoy!

1. Red, white and blue confetti cupcakes [above]

No-Bake Cheesecake with Berries | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

2. No-bake berry cheesecakes

Red Velvet Fruit Pizza | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

3. Red velvet fruit pizza

Snow Cone Cupcakes | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

4. Snow cone cupcakes

Fireworks Cookies | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

5. Fireworks cookies

Red, White and Blue Popsicles | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

6. Red, white and blue berry pops

Red, White + Blue Flag Brownies | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

7. Red, white and blue flag brownies

Patriotic Parfait in a Jar | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

8. Patriotic parfait in a jar

Italian Zabaglione Recipe | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

9. Italian zabaglione recipe

Patriotic Pancake Stacks | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

10. Patriotic pancake stacks

Watermelon Skewers | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

11. Watermelon skewers

Angel Food Cake with Coconut Whipped Cream and Berries | Patriotic 4th of July recipes from @cydconverse plus more 4th of July party ideas, entertaining ideas and more!

12. Angel food cake with berries and coconut cream

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Our Living Room Renovation (Before and After)

A Living Room Makeover from @cydconverse | Old house renovation, home improvement ideas, entertaining tips and more!

I am so excited today to share photos of our living room renovation with you! If you’ve been following along on Snapchat, you know we have countless hours into renovating this room. As a quick recap, when we began we thought there was just a single layer of wallpaper on the walls. As it turns out, there were three. Three very stubborn layers over plaster walls hiding some pretty big cracks. In total we spent the better part of three weeks in this room scraping wallpaper, having the walls repaired, priming and painting, painting, painting. Then I spent another few days on my hands and knees scrubbing and scraping grime off the hardwood floors that was leftover from the years of being covered in foul blue carpet. But today, finally, I have some real before and after photos to share with you! Click through for more plus details on paint colors, too.

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