Natalie at 1 week old + her birth announcement

If we went back in time to 26 years ago you’d most definitely find me with my two favorite dolls tucked under each arm. I loved my dolls (loved them!) and wanted nothing more than to be a mommy when I was older. I was also really into painting rocks with my nail polish, collecting Lip Smacker’s, and riding around the neighborhood with a radio bungee-corded to my bicycle, but those are stories for another time ;) What’s important about these memories is the things I enjoyed as a child are still things I enjoy as an adult: spending time on creative projects and lovin’ on my babies. How awesome to be able to experience this.

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Since our little pumpkin, Natalie Rose, was born I’ve definitely got my arms busy with our two babies. Max was just 19 months old when she was born, and although he’s very smart (with a great personality) he’s definitely very young. Each day is a blessed day because I’m spending it with my little loves.

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One of my favorite ways to capture the joy my babies bring me is to keep a baby book for each child. When Natalie was just one week old we gathered all our soft blankets and a Moses basket and snapped some photos of our daughter. She was so fresh from my womb and her legs wanted nothing more than to stay curled up, all cozy and compact in the basket. I love that we captured that in these photos.

natalie rose maggie whitley

One of our longtime sponsors, Pear Tree Greetings, helped us create her birth announcements to share with our family and friends. I know the years when our children are young will go by fast (…let’s not talk about that) so I’m glad to be preserving these years with something tangible for their baby books.

pear tree greetings maggie whitley

pear tree greetings maggie whitley

And I need to totally brag about something: this time I ordered our address pre-printed on the back of the envelopes, along with a few extra envelopes for mistakes. Because new moms are often foggy. And sometimes their penmanship is funny looking. Speaking from experience, of course.

And just for fun, here’s Maxwell’s birth announcement from March 2013:

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Do you keep a baby book for your children? Project Life? How do you preserve the dozens of photos you take every day?

(Thanks to Pear Tree Greetings for sponsoring this post. All opinions and stories are uniquely mine.)

October baby bundle giveaways: $880+ in prizes

October is a very special month! Not only does it signify a change in seasons but the 29th is our estimated due date for Baby #2, and I’m already sooooooooooooo excited! This past weekend we finished up some big projects around our apartment that will help us ease into a family of four. It’s a wonderful feeling :)

We also have TWO baby themed giveaway bundles for our Maggie Whitley Designs community, starting today, totaling over $880 in prizes. Our 16 sponsors have donated some fantastic items, sure to spoil two of you! See below for the bundles & entry details.

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BABY BUNDLE #1: 1. Baby Carrier We from BabyBjörn, $139.95 value // 2. Bow Tie Onsie from Pea Pods Boutique, $15 value // 3. Welcome Baby Banner from Hawthorne Ave Arts & Vintage, $30 value // 4. Lovey, Bib and Burpcloth Set from Delva B. Tree, $30 value // 5. Fabric Keychain from Studio Risa, $25 value // 6. 75 Thank You Cards with Envelopes from Small Moments, $75 value // 7. $25 gift card to Little Sapling Toys, $25 value // 8. Sweet Dreams Pillow from Drawstring Studio, $22 value // 9. Siblings Shirt from E & LuLu, $26.95 value // 10. Dear Baby Journal from Paper + Spark, $32 value. TOTAL BUNDLE VALUE: $421

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BABY BUNDLE #2: 1. Hooded Baby Towel from Little Lily Bamboo, $38 value // 2. 10 Custom Bun in the Oven Announcements from Little Elephant Crafts, $70 value // 3. Bunny Blankie from Running Wild Designs, $26 value // 4. Baby Bib from Bella and Tate, $10 value // 5. Baltic Amber Teething Necklace from Spark of Amber, $21.99 value // 6. Purely Yours® Ultra Double Electric Breast Pump from Ameda, $299 value. TOTAL BUNDLE VALUE: $465

To enter the giveaway, please use the Rafflecopter entries below. None of the entry options are required so please keep an eye out for the entry options that don’t require social media, there are many :) One winner for each bundle will be selected at random and notified via email. Please note: both giveaways are open to US residents only. Good luck!

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Thank you for supporting the shops that help support me and my family.

What every pregnant woman wants to know…

popsicle maggie whitley

Whenever I’m pregnant I get a little nervous about having weird cravings. You know the ones: pickles and ice-cream, cookies and ketchup, french fries dipped in mayonnaise. I mean, for a large part of my day I’m thinking about what I’m going to eat next. (What?) During those first few weeks I really dread eating, but for the majority of my pregnancy I think about food and cravings and small meals and snacks in my purse.

And so I wonder if I’ll ever have a so-called weird craving. (So far: no.) And really, isn’t that what every pregnant woman secretly wants to know about the pregnant gal next door?

Have you had any strange pregnancy cravings? Normal cravings? Are any of you brave enough to admit what you’ve been eating? Even though I haven’t had any weird cravings, I’m only halfway through this pregnancy so there’s plenty of time for them to show up.

What I crave the most is a big bowl of cereal, juicy fruit, ice-cream, popsicles, cookies & milk, and any pairing that involves a combination of cheese/salt/crunch. And yes these are the same cravings I had with Maxwell. Makes me wonder if baby #2 is a little girl or a little boy.

So I’d love to know, what are your pregnancy cravings? (Don’t be shy, fill me in on what I’m missing — wink!)

How we created Maxwell’s nursery nook.

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Long before we moved to California (and by long I mean weeks, because really that’s how quickly we decided to move), I realized we weren’t going to have a traditional, separate nursery for our firstborn. The main reason is due to the change in our cost of living (umm, it skyrocketed). But that makes it sound so negative. Moving to Los Angeles presented us with a few limitations, but they’ve challenged us to be creative and revise our perspective — so that’s a big positive :) I think Zack and I are better people for moving; we’ve definitely learned so much.

Since I was pregnant when we moved here we were looking for an apartment with a large bedroom so it could double as the nursery. We knew looking for a 2 bedroom apartment just wasn’t feasible. (Folks, we’re not in the Midwest anymore.) So, we revised our perspective and greeted our new life in California with open hands. We found a cute little apartment to call home and promptly moved in.

Then in September 2013 we moved to a slightly larger apartment, and that’s where we currently are. You can see Maxwell’s first nursery nook here, and a few photos of our current apartment are found here). Thankfully our 2 Los Angeles apartments have always had great storage. Although… our new place is kind of a storage lover’s dream come true!

Anyhow. Having lived in a 1 bedroom apartment in Los Angeles with a baby for almost a year now, I wanted to share with you a few tips that helped us create a nursery nook for Maxwell.

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