5f999ceca8b79e1616fac8d7eedc39c4 The Snyder Family: 2018

Nursery 101: Tips on How to Organize a Nursery

Monday, December 31, 2018

Welcome to Isla's nursery, it's one of my favorite rooms in the house! After finding out we were expecting our third daughter, I knew I wanted to keep her room simple and sweet. Her middle name is Rose, after my late Grandmother and I knew I wanted to incorporate little hints of roses throughout the nursery. Once I found her crib sheet, it gave me a direction of a color scheme and everything else fell into place from there. We used the same chair and crib in her big sister's nurseries, but had to buy a new dresser, we went with our FAVORITE line of dressers from IKEA and I'm so happy with it! The drawers are really deep and allow for great storage, we have three other dressers from this line in our house, they are the price performer!

Once I had the decor finished, it was time to get ALL of my storage bins out from when the older girls were babies. Organizing ALL the babies things can be a bit overwhelming, especially your first time around! Since Isla is our third little lady, I learned a thing or two from my older girl's nurseries and was able to really simplify this time around. Read on to get my tips on how to organize your nursery. 

 Crib (Amazon) / Crib Sheet (Little Unicorn: Target) / Name Sign (Etsy) / Rug (Target) / Doll Strooler (Amazon)
Dolls (Candy Kirby Designs) / Curtains (Target)

Chair (Homegoods: Similar) / Pillow (Homegoods: Similar) / Pouf Ottoman (Crate & Kids) / Doll (Crate & Kids)
Side Table (IKEA- we shortened the legs) / Lamp (IKEA) / Stop & Smell the Roses Print (Etsy) / Mirror (IKEA)

* Small Nursery Tip: We bought our chair when we lived in the city and Avery had a nursery even smaller then this one. A swivel chair is a great option if you don't have enough space for a glider/rocking chair, just make sure you get a comfy ottoman too! 

Pink Storage Cubes (Amazon) / Piggy Bank (Nordstrom) / Doll House (Amazon) / Fringe Basket (Target
Gold Arrow Basket (Homegoods: Similar) / Storage Bins (Target)

Let's start with the biggest "job" of the room, organizing the closet! I highly suggest grabbing some of these storage bins from Amazon, they come in a multi-pack, are inexpensive, sturdy and can hold a ton of stuff! I had planned on buying cute labels to hang off the handles too, but clearly didn't get around to it. The bins on the top shelf are things that I don't need access to on a daily basis. 

* Mom tip: I buy a small pack of the next size diapers to have on hand, that way when I think Isla is outgrowing her current size, I can try on the next without ordering a huge box! We love Pamper's swaddlers and have used their diapers and wipes for all three girls. I also have a bin of the next size onesies and footed pajamas, these are great to have on hand when I think Isla will be ready to move on to the next size as well. Finally, I have two empty bins for all the misc. "stuff" you will have, items like nursing covers, extra changing pad covers, extra crib sheets, etc. It's nice to have a few empty bins, trust me, they will eventually fill-up! 

When it comes to hanging clothes, I only hang up coats and dresses, I find it easier to have all other clothes folded and put away in the dresser. Blankets, shoes and extra hair bows are also kept in storage bins, ready to go when needed. * Mom tip, you DON'T need shoes for baby, seriously, my oldest daughter Avery had more shoes then I did when she was a baby and I think I put shoes on her once or twice!? Have one or two pairs of "soft" sole shoes, like a pair of moccasins or booties and that will be plenty! 

We always have a big box of wipes and her current size of diapers in the closet, we keep diapers in both the diaper cart in her room and in a basket downstairs. A cute basket filled-up with the softest stuffed animals ever sits on top of two storage bins. In the top bin I keep clothes that she has outgrown, once this bin gets full, I transfer all those clothes into a larger storage bin, label it with the size/season (ex: Size 6-12 Months Winter) and take it down to our crawl space. The second bin serves as a "Memory Box," I keep all the little memories we gather throughout the year in there, for example, cards from when she was born, hospital bracelet, her coming home outfit, monthly "stat" sheets from the doctor and anything else I want to save for her. 

* Girl Mom Tip: hang the diaper covers for each dress on the hanger with the dress! Over the years, I have tried storing those little diaper covers so many different ways and have found this to be by far the best way. 

* Storage tip: Roll-up your swaddle blankets! It's easier to find exactly what blanket you want and it takes up a lot less space then folding them and keeping them in a drawer!

Favorite Socks (Robeez / Hanna Andersson

* Girl Mom tip: I like to keep "off season" bows in a basket, seasonal colors, holiday bows, etc. that I don't need access to on a daily basis are kept in the closet. Socks are an item that I need quick access too, so I keep those in a basket on her diaper cart. 

Swan (Target) / Diaper Cart (Homegoods: Similar) / Rug (Target)

Burp Cloths & Bibs (Target / Copper Pearl / Aden & Anais / Little Unicorn)

Isla only has one smaller dresser in her room, so I decided to use a cute cart to store her diapers and a few other nursery essentials! On the top shelf we usually keep diapers, wipes and diaper cream. I love that this cart is on wheels because you can easily move it from room to room, or closer to the dresser where the changing pad used to be. The second shelf is the basket with socks, as well as my favorite burp cloths. Finally, the bottom shelf stores books and bandana bibs, perfect for when baby starts to cut teeth and has extra drool! 

Shelf (Crate & Kids) / Dresser (IKEA) / Diaper Pail (Ubbi

Letterboard (Amazon) / Rattle (Etsy) / Swan (Amazon) / Saint Doll (Shining Light Dolls) / Bow Hooks (Crate & Kids)

* Girl Mom Tip: I keep on season bow clips in the glass jar and hang my favorite headbands on the hooks. 

Looking inside her drawers, I keep bodysuits, onesies and pajamas in the top drawer. I prefer using the "tank" style onesies to layer under long sleeve tops and sweaters/sweatshirts in the winter. Zipper pajamas are also a favorite at our house, I love the solid color sleepers from Old Navy and Carter's has great budget friendly one piece pajamas too. 

In the next drawer, I fold her leggings and long sleeve shirts. I try my best to keep her leggings in groups according to color, but not going to lie, when laundry gets out of control, all the colors live together! 

The bottom drawer holds a lot of her seasonal clothes, right now in the winter months I store her sweaters and sweatshirts, in the summer months I keep one piece "bubble" outfits and swimsuits. 

*Storage Tip: Keep the items you use the most onesies, pajamas, burp cloths, socks and bows easy to reach! As a Mom, we are usually doing things one handed (baby on the other hip), so make life easy and really think about where you want to store your most used items! 

Phew, organizing your sweet little baby's room can feel overwhelming, but just remember LESS is MORE! You really don't need a ton of extra items, trust me, you will be doing a lot of laundry ;) Take your time and organize little by little, I use to love going in my girl's nurseries before they were born, just dreaming about the little baby that would be sleeping in there one day. Congratulations on your new arrival, I hope some of these tips will help you prepare for your greatest adventure yet!

Follow along with more of our daily adventures on Instagram: @snyderfamilyco

Christmas 2018

Saturday, December 29, 2018

And just like that, Christmas 2018 is over! We checked off every, single festive activity possible this month, from breakfast with Santa, to school parties, we kept the holiday spirit alive and well over here! With Avery's birthday being at the beginning of December, and Christmas following a few weeks later, we filled every weekend with something fun and festive. It was SO nice to slow down just a bit this week and focus on spending time as a family.

We started off our weekend with a favorite tradition, driving around our town looking at all the Christmas lights and decorations. We made the mistake of telling our little ladies that we would get ice cream after, which meant they saw a block of houses and kept asking, "Is this the way to Dairy Queen!?" Isla was so quiet and so intrigued by all the lights! It was so special to have her join us this year.

Next up, we celebrated Christmas Eve! This year, we followed Scott's tradition and let the girls open the presents from us and their "sister" gifts to each other. We were so happy with this decision, it broke up some of the gifting craziness and the girls enjoyed playing with some new toys throughout the day. We buy them each four gifts, following the something you "want, need, wear and read" method! We loved watching them exchange their sister gifts, Avery and Emmy would tell the other sister what they bought before the present was even opened, they were just too excited! I loved this tradition and we will definitely keep up with it next year too.

Want: Calico Critter Town House (sister gift) Panda Family and Furniture Sets 1, 2, 3 
Need: Hooded Bath Towels (Avery, Emmy, Isla) / Wear: Pajamas (Avery, Emmy, Isla) / Read: (Avery, Emmy, Isla)

Christmas Eve evening, we went to Mass and hosted our parents after. The girls were able to open gifts from their Mimi and Grampy, which meant more wrapping paper madness and lots of excitement. I truly think you could wrap up an empty box for Avery and she would scream like it was something she wanted more then anything else in the entire world! I l just love that girl, she makes everyone around her feel so appreciated and loved. We all enjoyed eating too many appetizers, followed by our Italian Stew and snacked on lots of sweets to end the night. Santa's elves were up late getting everything set up for the girls and everyone went to bed excited for the morning.

Dress (Old Navy) / Bow (One Stop Bow Shop)

Dress (Crew Cuts) / Bow (One Stop Bow Shop)

Isla Dress (Gap) / Headwrap (Gymboree
Can we also appreciate the shocked look our littlest girlfriend gives us every time we take her picture!

Finally, the main event, Christmas! We thought the girls would for sure wake up at 5:00 a.m. ready to open gifts, lucky for us, they waited until 6:00 a.m., ha! Emmy was up first, followed by Avery and little miss Isla decided to sleep in of course! The girls were SO sweet running down the stairs, literally screaming in anticipation, ready to see if Santa had come.

We loved watching them open each gift from Santa, luckily... they were all on the good list! This year Avery asked for a Big LOL Surprise and a desk for her room, Emmy asked for a Real as Can Be Baby Alive, a cat piano and a panda bear, and Isla just asked for some peace and quiet ;) By 7:00, Isla was awake and the big girls were finished opening their gifts. They were so sweet and excited to help Isla open her first Christmas gifts, her favorite gift seemed to be a new wood teether that was in her stocking, which made sense considering she cut four teeth over Christmas and the few days that followed!

At night, we headed to my parents, Avery and Emmy were SO excited to see their cousins! We always eat homemade pasta for Christmas dinner and it's a meal we all look forward to every year. This year we started a new tradition of an adult grab bag, which was hilarious, as well as adding in a few rounds of Left, Right, Center, as the family social chair, I think our activities went great ;) By the end of the night we were all exhausted, the kids went to bed somewhat early and I'm positive we all fell asleep the second our heads hit the pillow!

Left, Right Center (Amazon)

Girls' Christmas Dresses (Matilda Jane)

Plaid Top (Old Navy) / Black Jeans (Old Navy

It was such a magical holiday, every year gets better, seeing our girls and their excitement for the holiday is the BEST thing ever! Santa, we are already counting down the days until you come visit us again, I hope you all had a wonderful holiday with your family, Merry Christmas!

Follow along with more daily adventures at: @snyderfamilyco

What's Cooking: Italian Stew Recipe

Saturday, December 22, 2018

I am so excited to host Christmas Eve dinner at our house this year! Growing up, I always loved our Christmas Eve traditions. My family and I would go to mass and then head to my Aunt and Uncles house, we always had a ton of appetizers along with a yummy and hearty soup, topped off with Christmas cookies. We would stay really late and when we got home we would get to unwrap one present, which was always a new pair of pajamas to wear on Christmas morning. I follow the same tradition with my own girls now and it makes me so happy!

I decided to stick to our old tradition and am making one of my family's favorites stews, I wish it had a fancier name, but we just call it Italian Stew! I'll be serving it with a big salad and of course bread (#carbsforlife). I also pinned a few fun and festive appetizers that I plan on making to make sure everyone is nice and full.

I would love to hear about your holiday traditions and favorite recipes, I'll start off a little virtual recipe swap with the Italian Stew recipe, I hope you love it as much as we do, enjoy!

Wooden Spoon (Chrissy Teigen for Target) / Dutch Oven (Chrissy Teigen for Target
Pinch Bowl (Anthropologie) / Felt Mistletoe (West Elm)

Italian Stew

1 lb. Italian sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
3 cups beef broth
1 can (14 1/2 oz.) stewed tomatoes, cut up
1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 pkg. (9 oz.) refrigerate cheese tortellini
1 small zucchini, sliced
1/3 cup chopped green pepper
2 T minced fresh parsley
Grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, brown sausage and onion over medium heat. Drain. Add garlic; cook and stir for 2 minutes.

Stir in broth, tomatoes, tomato sauce, carrot, basil, and oregano. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered for 30 minutes.

Gently stir in tortellini, zucchini, green pepper, and parsley. Cover and simmer for 20- 25 minutes or until tortellini is tender. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

*Tip: Cook your tortellini separate and add it in the soup right before serving! This will make sure the tortellini doesn't soak up too much of the soup liquid. I also suggest storing any leftover in separate containers as well.

                       Follow along with more daily adventures at: @snyderfamilyco

Welcome to the popular Inspiration Monday Party! Come visit and be inspired with fabulous home decor, crafts, recipes and more!

Linking-Up With: Inspiration for Moms

This Is: Wednesday 2018

Thursday, December 20, 2018

I always love following along with some of my favorite Instagram accounts when they post "A Day in the Life." I think it's so fun to see how my days are alike/different from other Mom's, and ok, maybe I'm a bit nosy too. It also reminds me that we are all just doing the best we can in the hustle and bustle of Mom life!

Just this week, I set an hourly alarm and tried my best to document a typical Wednesday at our house, so follow along and take a peek at a Wednesday with the Snyder sisters.

5:51: Scott and I try (key word, try) to take turns waking up bright and early to head to the gym. Neither of us ever really want to get up, however, we do feel better when we get home. I like to use the Tone it Up app at the gym and squeeze in a few of their weight lifting routines, topped off with a little cardio.

Yeti Rambler (Amazon

7:17: Back home for a cup of coffee (or two), mixed in a little Egg Nog from Traders Joe and headed upstairs to get ready for the day. I typically follow a five minute make-up routine, because if I had any more time then that, I'd sleep five more minutes!

8:12: Today happened to be Emmy's last day of preschool before Winter Break, so we wrapped up her teachers gifts before going to school. This year I found the most perfect ornament (#snyderslovepizza) and finished it off with a gift card to Lou Malnati's. As a former teacher, I can assure you, all we want is a night off of cooking!


Purple Boots (Target) / Christmas Dress (Target)

8:41: Lately the only way I can get my girls to sit still for me to do their hair is by nicknaming the different hair styles I have to offer, which isn't very many. This morning, Avery opted for Panda ears and Emmy chose Kitty ears, whatever gets the job done and gets us out the door on time! Emmy is also in a phase where she prefers to wear a princess dress over her clothes, you do you girlfriend. 

10:03: Ahhh, one of my most cherished times of the week. I actually get about 40 minutes of uninterrupted ALONE time, insert all the praise hands! The girls are at two different buildings for preschool, so by the time I drop off both girls, Isla usually falls asleep the second we pull out of the parking lot. I really don't have enough time to go home and transfer her into her crib before we would have to leave to pick up Emmy, so she takes a little car nap. While she naps I typically read a book, scroll through Instagram, listen to a podcast, drink hot coffee and enjoy the quiet!

11:34: Isla woke up and we picked Emmy up from preschool before heading to Target, our second home. On this particular day we needed to grab some supplies for Avery's school holiday party and of course had to make a stop down the toy aisles.

12:44: As soon as we got home, it was time for some lunch before nap time, I should add-in that at this point I have gotten these girls in and out of the car what feels like one million times and I'm sure I've burned more calories then any morning trip to the gym! Emmy requested a little pizza from Trader Joe's paired with an apple and peanut butter, Miss Isla enjoyed some chicken and noodles with a side of pouch. I know, riveting information ;)

Halo SleepSack (Target)

1:35: Next up, nap time! I always put Emmy down first because girlfriend can't be trusted by herself if I were to put Isla down before her. Emmy's nap time routine is: read four letter books and one regular book, sing our little prayer song two times, sing twinkle-twinkle little star twice, arrange blankets, sip of water and a kiss on the head, yea it's extra, just like her! After Emmy is down, it's Isla's turn. She gets a bottle before this nap and usually falls asleep pretty quickly, on this day she needed a little more love, so I happily cuddled her a bit longer before she fell asleep.

2:26: Now comes the hardest decision of my day, while the girls are napping/having resting time do I sit down? Fold laundry? Clean a bathroom? Mop the floor? Do the dishes? Pick-up the family room? Eat lunch? Go to the bathroom alone? Make a few phone calls? Typically, if I didn't get a little down time in the morning I try to sit and relax while I make a quick lunch, without fail the second I sit down Isla, Emmy, or Avery need something and I'm up on my feet again. On this particular day, I was extremely productive because I knew I would be gone later in the day. I should also note that Avery has lunch bunch after school and get's home around 2:00, my Mom helped me out and picked her up, which is always SO helpful and appreciated!

Hair Bows (Amazon)

3:54: Recently, I have begun to structure Avery's rest time a little different, girlfriend was spending a little too much time on the iPad! So, now she has a bin full of "rest time" activities and has to pick and complete three before she gets iPad time. This is really the only time of day she gets time on the iPad, but I would still prefer she found something quiet to play instead. Baby steps, but by introducing her rest time bin, it has cut her iPad time in half!

Scarf (Target

5:17: Scott got home around 5:00 and off I went for a little self-care time! A quick eyebrow wax appointment, followed by some last minute holiday errands, equals pure bliss. I NEVER get this much down time or alone time, so I was extra thankful for some time away. I absolutely love staying home with my girls, but it is super challenging to find time for myself and lately, my tank has been running pretty low!

7:40: Keeping on trend with my self-care type of day, I grabbed some appetizers and a drink with a new set of girlfriends and was on my way home at 9:30, I sure know how to live it up! As mentioned in my story post, I'm typically half asleep on the couch watching an episode of Real Housewives by 8:30, so this was quite a night for me.

Yeti Rambler (Amazon

10:30: And finally, sweet, sweet, much needed sleep! My days with my girls goes by so very fast, I really wish I could have stuck around to document dinner/bedtime routine, because that's when the real fun happens ;) I'll save those little gems for another day, thanks for following along and if you stuck around this long, I owe you a glass of wine or a Starbucks!

Follow along with more daily adventures at: @snyderfamilyco

What's Cooking: Holiday Baking

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Each year the girls and I set aside a day near Christmas to bake cookies with Nana (my Mom). This week, we put on our Christmas pajamas, or our princess nightgown (ahem, Emmy) and made our three favorite cookies. Every year we make Kiss cookies, Peanut Butter cup cookies and Spritz cookies. 

A little Mom hack, while it would be all butterflies and rainbows if I had the actual time (and patience) to make each type completely by scratch, we "cheat" and use Nestle or Pillsbury pre-made cookie dough for our Kiss and Peanut Butter cup cookies. Honestly, it allows me to enjoy making cookies more with my little ladies, it makes it simple and not stressful! As a Mom, you have these visions of how certain moments are suppose to go... well what I have learned in the past five years, is that, that vision is probably not going to go exactly how I have it all thought out in my head. But, when I simplify things, it makes it easier to manage and I enjoy the moment so. much. more. Mom hacks were created for a reason, to make our lives easier, so don't be afraid to incorporate a Mom hack or two, even while baking with your squad. 

Wondering how the girls were able to help us? They were the candy un-wrappers and dough ball rollers, along with quality control, their favorite job! We had a wonderful day at Nana's house and the girls are so excited to share the cookies we made with our family on Christmas. 

Emmy's Nightgown (Amazon) / Polka Dot Thermal (Old Navy: Similar) / Bowl (Portmeirion)

Avery's PJ's (Matilda Jane) / Hair Bow (Amazon)

Follow along with more daily adventures at: @snyderfamilyco

What's Cooking: Isla Eats

Monday, December 17, 2018

Our sweet little Isla turned 10 months this month and girlfriend LOVES to eat! As you can see from the photos, she is o-v-e-r being spoon fed and prefers you just hand the pouch right to her. It's so funny, I really don't remember my big girls doing the pouch by themselves until they were much older! To be honest, she is kind of over purees in general, but it gives me good sense of peace that she's eating some fruit and veggies. What she is really loving lately is finger foods! Here is what she typically eats for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

Breakfast Ideas: Mini- pancake with strawberries, Better Oats oatmeal with fruit puree or a Trader Joe's cereal bars with banana.

Lunch/Dinner Ideas: Trader Joe's turkey meatballs w/marinara sauce and noodles, turkey lunch meat w/a pouch puree, Gerber Pick-ups are a new favorite and SO easy, she really likes the chicken with noodles and veggies. A girl after our own heart... her favorite meal is currently ground turkey taco meat w/avocado and shredded cheese, taco Tuesday forever!

It's so fun experimenting with new foods and seeing what she likes/dislikes, I should also mention that most importantly, she recently tried pizza, which she loved... she's officially a pizza loving Snyder!

Highchair (IKEA) / Pajamas (Carters) / Cup (Zoli) / Cute Baby (Scott/Brittany) 

Follow along with more daily adventures at: @snyderfamilyco