Thursday, August 25, 2016

Tyler. (eight months)

  This boy is an absolute joy. For his first few months, he was too busy for his own good and we just had a hard time figuring out what worked best for him. But now, 8 months in, we've absolutely found our groove. Tyler is happy and sweet and truly fits perfectly into our little family! He has a few nicknames that I keep forgetting to document: Tyler tush, Tushy Ty (we evidently like to talk about butts), our forever baby (because it truly seems like he's frozen in time size-wise), and the most used one- peanut.

 Pictures can be pretty deceiving, but if you've met Tyler in real life or seen him next to another baby his age (or younger!), then you know that the nickname Peanut fits him perfectly. He is growing at his own rate (no worries from the Dr. anymore!), but guys, I don't think I can fully express how tiny he really is. He's still in between 3/6 month clothes (that's a 3 month onesie in these photos!) and wearing size 2 diapers, but most brands are big too baggy for this skinny guy. Strangers who meet him are always surprised to hear his age and just this week someone commented on my newborn! But its also extra adorable because this tiny little baby body holds a big personality- he smiles so big, jabbers away, and is determined to roll around this entire house.

   This (July) was a fun month for us- we went our on first vacation to the Jersey shore! Tyler loved the beach and was really great about ditching any semblance of a schedule for the week, but we were all ready to be back to our own rooms by the end of the week. We also finished the last of our packing and moved into our new home! Saying goodbye to Tyler's nursery was a bit emotional and had me thinking of all those sweet newborn days/nights spent in there and wondering just how it can be that we're so much closer to his first birthday than those days!

We've slowed down our nighttime feedings and usually let Tyler go 6ish hours between nursing. He still clusters in the morning, but is slowly putting himself on a new 4 hour schedule during the day. And! He decided he officially wants to eat and loves purees again. So he eats 2-3 times each day, and we're pumping as much yogurt/avocado/good fats as possible to help him beef up a bit!

 Tyler is still a rolling machine and has officially become a sturdy sitter this past month. No crawling yet- but I'm guessing the move and our traveling this past month set him back a bit since we didn't give him many chances to practice. He loves to sit and dig through his little basket of toys (just like his big brother!). We also pulled out his activity table and he's working on standing and holding on to it. He loves his big brother and watches whatever he's doing if he's nearby. He also has started loving to read books this month and will sit still for a few in a row before he gets too antsy!

  This kid. I don't think I knew what to expect when we found out we would have two sons. And I'm glad- because he has been the best surprise. He is so sweet and snuggly, but also busy and noisy and has the best giggles and smiles for anyone. He doesn't seem to know a stranger and the moment I begin to worry about his small size, he crosses another thing off the developmental checklist and reminds me that all babies grow up in their own time!

New this month// fully eating solids, visited the Jersey Shore, moved to Columbine Ln., back to sleeping through the night, wearing 3-6 month clothes and size 2 diapers, sleeps with BabyJack lovey, sitting up unassited, starting to stand while holding on, rolling all around

Monday, August 22, 2016


Monday! It's the first in a long while that I'm not feeling frazzled or tired from a busy weekend or traveling or moving or etc etc. It's been almost a month since we moved into our new house and I think we can almost say it feels like home. Most of the random maintenance things are taken care of by now, pretty much all of the boxes are unpacked (yay for finally organizing my own closet!), and this past weekend was our first since we moved in that we both weren't traveling too much or hosting or running around. So good!

  But anyways, this house. We love it. Like pinch ourselves every single day love it. Don't get me wrong, I didn't love spending a painful amount to fix the broken patio door or basically having the entire inside of the dryer replaced when it stopped working after 4 laundry cycles or chasing Murphy for an hour around the neighborhood when we/he discovered some awesome holes in our fence left by the previous owners. Overall though, this house is like it was built for us. More on that in another blog post, I'm sure!

I went to the Belong conference with some girlfriends this past weekend and it was good. Great to get away and have a break from my little guys and wonderful to have chats with friends I love and hear from wise women a few steps ahead of me in life.

  You guys, I just filled out a survey and had to fill in my age. I officially fall into the 30-39 age range, which feels just too old right now. I'm not mature enough to be lumped with nearly 40-year-olds!

  I'm 99% sure I've convinced Justin (and myself) to do Whole30 again this September and I'm excited. Remind me I said that in a few weeks when I'm cursing all veggies and begging for a piece of bread!

  Also, it turns out I'm a bit of a book hoarder. I found SO many of my favorite books when we moved and I need to get rid of them. I'm hosting a book swap/wine night in September and cannot wait to send them to good homes! Let me know if you're in the Indy area and I'll invite you- seriously, come snag a great book for free so I don't have to donate it to Goodwill!

  Last random thought today? I just signed up for a 5k! I'm oddly nervous about it (even though I used to run a ton) and am only typing this so maybe some (or lots?) of you will keep me accountable! It's in mid-October and supports a local free health clinic, which I love! So, ask me about running next time you see me in real life!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Evenflo Sibby Travel System. (review)

This post was sponsored by Evenflo as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I received the Evenflo Sibby Travel System to facilitate my review, but photos and opinions are all my own.

(perfect example of those times when Caleb prefers to do his own thing than ride along with use!)

  If you know me, you know I sort of like to keep the amount of baby things we have to a minimum. We never owned one of the infamous rock'n'plays, only lightly used our fancier baby swing, and all the toys we own were gifted or handed down to us from friends and family. So you know it's a big deal for me to admit that we have three strollers now! 

  When our first son was born, we were gifted an amazing travel system that we used the HECK out of. I can't even express how used and beat up and broken in that stroller and car seat are by this point! After we found out we we're expecting #2, we splurged on a sturdy double stroller since Caleb would only be 18 months old when he became a big brother. But lately, we've been finding ourselves somewhere in between those two- Caleb is too antsy and independent to sit in a stroller when we go on our daily walks, but he's not quite ready to be forced to walk the entire way (the 2 year old drama is real!). Add to that our growing frustration with our old, bulky carseat from our last travel system- and we knew we needed a solution!

With the opportunity to try out the new Evenflo Sibby Travel System, I was excited to see if this was the right fit for our family.  As it turns out, it's perfect for the parenting stage we're in right now. The Sibby is unique because fits a carseat for Tyler to ride easily AND has a Ride-Along Board for Caleb to hop on when he's done walking. It's like the Goldilocks of strollers! It's one of those baby items that is worth the price and we'll be holding onto for a long time. 

 First of all, let's chat about the LiteMax Infant Car Seat. YOU GUYS. It is so so so lightweight. I mean, obviously the name indicates that. But it really, truly is. Even Justin was impressed by how light it is and how much easier it is to carry than our older model. We absolutely love this carseat! Bonus? It clicks into the Sibby stroller crazy easily. We're used to having to clip on carseat adapters to all of our strollers and being able to skip that step is awesome- since Tyler is getting older and sturdier at sitting, we can easily chose between clicking his carseat on the stroller or simply sitting him in it. 

  And this stroller! We've never had a umbrella stroller, but I feel like the Sibby has all the benefits of both a lightweight umbrella stroller and a regular, more heavy duty one. It is light and easy to handle/breakdown, but also pretty sturdy and comfy. Tyler is super tiny (I've mentioned that a few times before, right? ;D), so a more cushy and comfy stroller is still a must for him. And this wins! The Ride-Along Board give Caleb a great option to hop on when he's inevitably sick of walking (or, more likely, I want to move a bit faster!). He actually loves it and thinks he's helping me push Tyler while he's riding (he's not, but you know, toddlers). 

  But full disclosure, our Sibby Travel System (available at Target) arrived smack dab in the middle of our move so it took me a week or so to unpack and try it out. We've been using it for rides around the neighborhood in the afternoon, but I've been waiting until a weekend when Justin could help me snap some photos. And then it stormed this entire past weekend! And during the one dry window, Caleb was being an absolute stinker and refused to show of how much he truly does love this ride along board! But trust me when I say he loves it. And I love that it easily clips up for when he doesn't want to hop on- then it's not in my way and the stroller can act as a single. 

  So, moral of the story. This Travel System is just right for the phase of two kids two and under. This car seat is amazing! Both boys can ride along in the stroller, but we're not stuck with a bulky double seat or ride-along board when Caleb wants to be independent- we can quickly clip up the Board and keep going!

  Do you have a favorite stroller or travel system? What baby items are on your must-have's list?


  And just like that, I'm not in my 20's anymore! I'm not sure what my 30's will look like, but I have a suspicion they'll be full of confidence in Jesus, really good friendships, sweet family memories, learning to say I'm sorry more often, intentionally loving others better, and giving more grace than ever before (to myself and others). When I turned 20, I could generally predict how the next decade would go- graduate college, maybe get married, start a career and consider grad school, buy a house, hopefully have babies. I feel less able (and less desire) to predict how this decade will actually look- I hope I'll transition back into social work once the boys are in school and we would love to stay in our new home for a really long time. But outside of those things- it's all a bit fuzzy in a good way. I couldn't predict what my life at 40 will look like if I tried. At 30, I'm realizing it's far less about what I accomplish and far more about what I let go of and trust God to do. 

  So, 30. Let's do this! How about an unofficial motto for this new decade? 

(And for fun, a little update at the 30 Before 30 bucket list I made last year...and a peek into how I'm already giving myself more grace for not being perfect and finishing it!)

[ 01 ] Finish reading through the Bible.
[ 02 ] Run a 10k.
[ 03 ] Have professional photos taken.[ 04 ] Finally make a wedding album.
[ 05 ] Take a family vacation.
[ 06 ] Read 12 books.
[ 07 ] Visit a new city.

[ 08 ] Host a dinner party. (I'm sure we did this in some form, but cooking club doesn't count!)
[ 09 ] Establish consistent date nights with Justin.
[ 10 ] Visit a winery.
[ 11 ] Take a fitness class.
[ 12 ] Buy one classic thing that is probably pricey, but will last me forever.
[ 13 ] Go tech-free for an entire week. 
[ 14 ] Do Whole30 again. (tried and quit in order to keep up my milk supply!)
[ 15 ] Try a new recipe every month.
[ 16 ] Volunteer. (So embarrassing! Definitely working on this this Fall)
[ 17 ] Make 2 more quilts. (1 down!)
[ 18 ] Have a picnic.
[ 19 ] Rewatch Anne of Green Gables.
[ 20 ] Memorize two verses of scripture each month. (I was reallllly good at this for half the year. #twokidsundertwo?
[ 21 ] Go to a concert.
[ 22 ] Be more involved in our church.
[ 23 ] Make a new family tradition.
[ 24 ] Build a capsule wardrobe. (No. Didn't happen. My wardrobe is SHOT after two pregnancy and two nursing babies. Help wanted.)
[ 25 ] Hold at least 24 Noonday Collection trunk shows. (So close! Hoping to cross this off in the next few months)
[ 26 ] Make our master bedroom something we're proud of {headboard, wall decor, anything!}
[ 27 ] Do one big-ish house project. (Putting our house on the market and moving counts to me!)
[ 29 ] Keep my closet clean for one month. (Yes!!!)
[ 30 ] I never added a 30th thing!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The best birthday gifts.

The world's best cooking club!
 (we gave Jay a free pass for missing the party so she could bring little McKayla into the world!)

  I showed up at monthly cooking club last night to a surprise birthday party- for me. I so love celebrating others and am truly working on accepting encouragement and being celebrated by others without feeling awkward or minimizing it. And you know? I feel so so loved last night. Five of my absolute favorite friends went out of their way to just love me well and they succeeded. So if this is what my 30's are going to look like, I love it already!

  My birthday isn't until next week and I know it's really just a day and nothing magical will happen when I wake up as a 30 year old on Monday morning. But at the same time, it is still a big deal. At 30, I've settled into myself and how God has created me. I am less concerned with being cool or popular or making every single person happy and more committed to simply loving God and others really well. I'm more aware of the passions God has put in my heart and more confident about boldly sharing those passions.

  So, for my 30th birthday, I'm continuing my 30 for 30: Gather, Grow & Give Back goal for myself. I'm inching along! (and if I make to to 30 combine Noonday Collection orders/trunks shows this fall- I'll likely be able to visit our artisans in Uganda or Haiti or Peru next summer! Talk about extra incentive!) But truly- its been so fun watching people get excited and be bold about doing something outside of themselves. Ethical fashion, supporting artisans around the world to help them earn a dignified living, raising money for a friend's adoption, and sharing about social justice with their friends.

  And what if we didn't stop there? The best birthday present I could think of is for others to do good. Obviously, supporting Noonday Collection and our artisans is a great place to start- but think of all the awesome other ways, too! Sending a care package to your local children's hospital. Dropping off diapers to the nearest women's shelter. Baking cookies for a neighbor. Paying for the person behind you in the Starbucks drive-thru. Calling a friend you haven't talked to in a while and asking them how they're doing. Guys. It's easy and often free and always feels so good to love others well! So if you think of wishing me a happy birthday in the next week, how about just doing something good for someone else? 

And if you need a place to start, I still need 24 brave souls to help me reach this huge goal by making a simple Noonday Collection order OR hosting a Trunk show between now and November!

And know that I'm talking to you- not the whole of everyone reading this blog post. But you specifically- the one thinking that hosting a Trunk Show is not your style or you have no one to invite or you don't want your friends to think you're being sales-y. You- who are thinking this is great for me or someone else but not yourself. Think of the impact even little ole you can have by sharing just the concept of using our purchases for good! Think of the awesome way you can support that high school friend you don't really keep up with by helping them raise money for their adoption (they don't have to come! We just need their agency name and we can donation from your Trunk Show!)

So, if you even have the smallest inkling that this is something you should step out of your comfort zone and do it- email me! (katie.n.rush @ gmail .com) It doesn't have to be fussy. We can just meet up at a local coffee shop with two of your favorite social justice loving friends or host a play date with your mom friends or do a ladies' night at your church. Big, small, easy, detailed- whatever works best for you. If you're up for the excitement of helping me celebrate my 30th birthday over the next few months- I would love it!

{We can find the perfect idea that fits your style, circle of friends and calendar best! Ps. Who doesn't love planning ahead? And don't worry if you don't live near me at all- we can work around that!} 

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Tyler's nursery.

  We're scheduled to move in two days and 95% of our house is packed up and ready. So you're probably assuming I took these photos weeks ago, right? You'd be wrong- I took them today. While we don't have any dishes to eat off of or more than three outfits for each of us to wear, Tyler's room is in perfect unpacked condition! Because I've been meaning to take photos of his first nurser before we pack it in boxes and set it up (probably identically?) in the new house, I keep procrastinating to pack his things. Justin thinks it's silly and overly sentimental. But you guys! My baby's nursery! Probably the last nursery we'll ever set up and even though his new room will look identical, this was where he slept his first night home from the hospital, where we've nursed through the night, where I folded onesies and prayed for him before he was born. I wanted to capture it!

  So anyways, I finally snapped some photos of his neutral nursery. Here was my inspiration for his room- I knew I wanted to keep it simple from the beginning. I started with my most favorite greige paint and layered grays on top with a few pops of blues, red, and yellows. We bought the same Ikea crib Caleb has, just in white (its crazy affordable!), painted a somewhat janky hand-me-down dresser, and moved the chair from Caleb's room. 

  I bought three big-ish things for the room that I love- this rug, this adorable wolf print, and this beautiful sign. Other than that, I pieced together inexpensive things or borrowed from Caleb's room. Those picture frames above his dresser? From Walmart! Super cheap and cute. Oh! And I found this really cute felt ball garland on Etsy for above his crib. I have plans (and all the materials) to make another pallet coat rack, but by the time I decided to start working on it we listed our house. So I'll make it (maybe?) once we settle in to the new house. 

  Anyways, there you have it. Tyler's nursery- simple and sweet. Less colorful and busy than Caleb's room. Which is ironic, because he is a much more colorful and busy baby than Caleb was!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Rushes Make a Move: inspiration.

(top: one, two, three middle: one, two, three bottom: one, two, three)

  Ok. So as much as I want to be a Debbie Downer, it really does look like we're actually going to move this week! I've said that three times over the last two months though, so we'll see. Either way, I'm getting excited! I woke up this morning and instantly thought of our new house, which led to me scrolling through photos we took when we had our inspection a few months ago, and that led me to scroll through all of the random screenshots I've taken of different house inspiration I've found over the last few months. Ah! I'm excited all over again.
  I decided to put all of the photos in one place so I could see them together and have a better picture of all my project ideas for the new house. I LOVE seeing them all together. We know this will be a really, really long term house for us- which means less pressure to make it perfect immediately and also more freedom to make it perfect for us since we know we'll be there for awhile (we have talked ourselves out of so many projects at our current house because we always knew it was temporary!). The current owners have added a few pretty details like wainscoting and great paint colors and painted light fixtures and fresh white cabinets. The original builder added even better details like all hardwoods, granite counters, lots of big windows, a big entryway, and a dreamy double staircase!
  So, maybe this will turn into a house/diy blog? Ha. Unlikely! But I do hope that I have more and more updates to share over the next few weeks and not just a growing Pinterest board. Here's to the Rushes Making a Move!