the three of us

family photo on the beach in LBI

Ah, vacation, how wonderful and tiring you are. We kicked off a two-week family beach vacation with Chris’ side of the family in North Wildwood last week (with a brief visit with his extended family) followed by a week at my aunt’s house in Bradley Beach with my mom and two nephews, who are visiting from Michigan (and a brief visit with my extended family). It has been a whirlwind, that’s for sure, and Isla is loving every minute with all her cousins. She’s eating sand, screaming with excitement when we sit her bum in the ocean and crawling all over the place. It has been a bit tiring for the adults in the house, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. I’ll share some more photos from both legs of our trip when we get home. In the meantime, a nap. No wait, the beach!

(We took this photo during an evening visit to my home away from home, LBI. This is the first summer of my life that we don’t have a rental house there so while that makes me sad, I was thrilled to bring our sweet girl for a brief visit. She’s been there once before but only in my belly. I think it’s time to start saving for next summer!)

I hope you’re enjoying summer’s (near) end!

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i told you.

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

First of all, I am aware that I am blindingly pasty and time is running out, but is that an ever-so-slight farmer’s tan on my arms? Fantastic. So when I put on these shorts, which I’ve had for a few seasons now, I put on some wedges at first to see if I could still pull off the short shorts and heels. BAH! No. Those days have come and gone, my friends. So flats it is. For the rest of my life. With short shorts at least. Also, see, I told you I bought a lot of embroidered tops this summer. This one, from Spotted Moth (no longer available, sorry), is a little long in the arm holes, so rather than pretend I don’t know people can see my nude bra, I threw on a lacy black one and acted like it was on purpose. Classy, I know, but I loved it too much to send it back. Besides, everyone loves a little side boob, no? Sorry. I’ll stop talking.

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

Isla was laughing at me so being the really mature mom that I am I stuck my tongue out at her. In my defense, she laughed even more. That kid eggs me on. It’s all her fault.

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

Spotted Moth Embroidered Shirt; Anthropologie mustard pleated shorts; Warby Parky Blue Marblewood Sunglasses; Joie Nice Sandals in Platinum; Nixon Black and gold Leather watch; old belt; Coach New Willis Bag in English Saddle; Chanel lipstick in Paradis

{Spotted Moth top; Anthropologie shorts (not similar but I love these); old belt; Warby Parker sunglasses; Joie sandals; Nixon watch; Coach bag (similar); Chanel lipstick in “Paradis”; Estée Lauder “Hot Coral” nail polish}

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baby-led weaning | part four {seven months}

baby-led weaning strawberries

Today’s baby-led weaning post covers pasta (plain and later with an avocado sauce), cauliflower, strawberries, meatballs and yogurt. I’ll also share with you a little allergic reaction scare and explain why we’re waiting on certain foods as a result.

For those just tuning in, Isla is now seven months old and we’ve been at this since she was six months. Scroll all the way to the bottom of this post for links to parts one through three.

Baby led weaning cauliflower

Let’s start with cauliflower. There’s not much to say except what Isla would have said could she speak English: “You are no broccoli, sir, so stop trying and quit your day job.” She didn’t not like it, but she was rather unimpressed. I think it needed some hummus. I cooked this the same way I prepared her broccoli: chopped into individual trees then steamed for six to seven minutes until soft enough to pierce easily with a fork and cooled before serving.

Baby led weaning plain whole wheat organic rotini pasta

Pasta. Ah, pasta. I served her plain organic whole wheat rotini, cooked until it was really soft. Let me repeat. This was plain. No sauce. No butter. No cheese. Plain. We started out okay …

Baby led weaning plain whole wheat organic rotini pasta

… then she cried, but briefly regained her composure …

Baby led weaning plain pasta

… and then all hell broke loose. I quickly threw on an avocado. I always say, “when in doubt, grab an avocado.” Okay, I don’t say that, but I should because she loves them so I always keep one on hand in case a new food fails. And boy did we fail. Conniption is putting it mildly. Our first temper tantrum, perhaps? In her defense, who the hell eats plain organic whole wheat pasta without sauce? Isla: angry. Mom: -10 points. Pasta: unsalvageable. My bad kiddo.

baby-led weaning pasta with avocado sauce

I take that back. We salvaged it! A few days later I made an avocado sauce and she loved it. Sucked it right off the rotini (and then spit out most of the rotini). To prepare the sauce I cut this recipe in half, though it still made enough to serve the entire family so keep that in mind since you’re likely to use only a very little. Also, I nixed the salt (for obvious reasons) and cheese (but only because I forgot). She had already been exposed to all of those ingredients except the lemon and basil, which is why I chose it. Success. And it was really good. I’d eat it myself.

baby-led weaning pasta with avocado sauce

And then my sweet girl smiled again. Phew.

baby-led weaning strawberries

And now can we talk about strawberries? I could fill an entire post with photos and videos of this girl eating strawberries. It’s like she had a sugar rush with every single bite. She was losing her mind. Seriously. Laughing, licking her lips and sometimes even yelling very loudly at each piece. Obviously confessing her love to it. It was pretty adorable. She went through about five strawberries (served whole or cut in half depending on the size), sucking and squeezing the juice out and going crazy before tearing them apart with her gums.

baby-led weaning strawberries baby-led weaning strawberries

Okay Popeye. Calm down.

baby led weaning meatballs

And now to meatballs. Where do I begin? I was nervous about introducing meat to begin with. I decided to wait on sauce since the acidity in tomatoes comes with its own problems. Good thing, too, because Isla ended up with hives around her mouth and I can’t pinpoint the exact ingredient that caused them, though egg is the likely culprit.

So, back up. I combined lean sirloin from Whole Foods with 1 egg, a little organic baby oatmeal we had left over, very finely chopped onions, garlic powder and basil. Then I rolled them into small balls and baked them at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes (until they were undoubtedly cooked through). I served them to her whole and she actually really liked them. But the hives developed almost immediately, though I didn’t see them at first because she was covered in meat and chomping away with her head down. She didn’t have any other symptoms though, such as swelling of the tongue, respiratory issues, etc. and the hives started to improve, not get worse, after I cleaned her face. I spoke with our pediatrician, who cleared these foods ahead of time, and we determined no hospital visit was necessary. It remains to be seen what exactly caused the reaction. You can bet your ass though that we’ll be steering clear of eggs, red meat and onions for a little while (the three ingredients she had never been exposed to before). We hope to get some advice from an allergist, but better safe than sorry. For now we’re also going to hold off on tomato sauce, nuts and other high allergen foods, mostly because I’m nervous.

Now I’m on the hunt for vegan recipes so please share! Or at least those without egg and red meat.

baby-led weaning strawberries with yogurt

Now back to strawberries! With yogurt! Dairy is another one I was nervous about but so far so good. I dipped strawberries in organic whole milk plain yogurt (again from Whole Foods). On the first day I gave her a very small amount to make sure she didn’t have a tummy ache or skin reaction. I also cleaned her face pretty quickly afterward because this was the first new food after meatballs and I was nervous. On day two I gave her more and while I personally think plain whole yogurt is pretty sour, she loved it.

baby-led weaning strawberries with yogurt

So sour, but so good.

baby-led weaning strawberries with yogurt

More yelling and love confessing. And then she decided bibs are dead to her. Fantastic.

For more about our journey with BLW:
BLW week one | BLW part two | BLW part three
Instagram (hashtag #BLWwithIslaBee)

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