Jiyeon of The Allens Photography has done it again. On what would have been H's due date, Jiyeon shot the most intimate in-home session for us while H was 16 days old. As I share these today, he's already past 2 months and growing like a weed. It feels like a lifetime ago looking at how tiny he was in these photos. I am so grateful we have these photos to look back on and remember those fleeting moments and restless nights.
I consider myself incredibly lucky to know so many creative people, let alone ones I get to call friends. I first "met" Jiyeon (one half of the amazing photography duo The Allens Photography) off of Instagram from location tag at a local boba place. I'm not even kidding. We got to know each other and eventually met up with hubbies in tow for dinner and have been connecting ever since.
Fast forward to last April on Earth Day, when we meet up once more at Redwood Regional Park in Oakland for a maternity shoot. It was our first time at this park and we were absolutely floored by how incredible the trees were. Up in the hills of Oakland is this incredible place filled with redwoods that you can walk right up to and admire—literally just a few feet from the parking lot.
Jiyeon, you are incredible. Local Bay Area friends and friends everywhere (they love to travel), please hit up The Allens Photography to create some magic. You seriously will not be disappointed.
This post has been long overdue, but for good reason I promise! While I had the weeks leading up to my due date all "planned" out with lots of last minute prepping and blogging, baby J decided to make his own plans and arrive 2.5 weeks early. But here it is—the baby nursery! As finished as it could be, at 3 weeks postpartum. This California-inspired nursery has been a labor of love and I owe so much of the handiwork (and insane amount of trips to Ikea) to my patient husband.
The idea all started with the most amazing cacti wallpaper from Rocky Mountain Decals. After obsessing over the pattern on Pinterest for months, I knew I had to have it. Being renters, it was a no-brainer that a removable decal would be perfect for us. It was a bit of a learning curve to learn how to apply it, but after the first sheet, it was easy to get the hang of it. We had a few hiccups along the way, but luckily with a pattern like this, it's kind of hard to see the mistakes. ;) RMD has so many fun designs for the nursery/home and I can't recommend them enough.
With the wallpaper being such a big focal feature, I knew I wanted the rest of the furniture to be as neutral as possible. It was also very important to us to keep it to a few key pieces of furniture instead of cluttering up the nursery with too many things. For the crib, I knew immediately I wanted Babyletto's Hudson 3-in-1 Convertible Crib when I first saw it. It has the simple white crib design that I love, and the mid-century legs make it perfect. An added bonus is that it converts to be a toddler bed, so we'll be able to keep it for years to come.
The 4moms' mamaRoo came very highly recommended to us by friends and family, so we knew it would be the perfect addition to the nursery. It doesn't take up much room at all and has such a sleek, minimal design we both love. John's also a huge fan that he can control it on his phone and it can connect to any mp3 device. It's crazy how high tech baby products are these days.
The rest of the pieces include Baxton Studio's rocking chair from Amazon, Ikea's Tarva dresser that we painted ourselves and doubles as the changing area, leather pouf from Amazon, our record collection (with baby's own record player), and random Target pieces for all of the decor touches. We've still got a few fun elements to add to the walls, including the art gallery that will go above the dresser, so I will have to do an update to the reveal and share those at a later time. But first, time to feed the little one.
Without a doubt, we are the luckiest couple in the world with friends and family that care for us (and baby J) the way they do. A few months ago, my sister asked me what kind of a baby shower I wanted to have and I knew immediately that I wanted something coed, unique and much like our wedding, insanely fun.
We knew we wanted to have the party in LA/OC, but planning 350 miles proved to be a bit difficult. Luckily, Peerspace came in a pinch and helped us out with finding a venue J and I both loved. After a few emails a Peerspace rep, the one space that stuck out the most was Greenbar Distillery located in the downtown LA Arts District. It's the untraditional choice for a coed baby shower, which fit the unique and fun criteria for us, and that was what we loved most about it. Another item on our wishlist was to have a space for catering or a food truck, and our host Bennett at Greenbar was so accommodating to work with.
In a blink of an eye, we had a venue space and it quickly helped pave the way to plan the rest of the shower details. The next step was to figure out the invitation/paper details, which would help us figure out the general "theme" of the shower. Working at Minted, it was an easy process for me to find the design that we both loved and fit "us" perfectly. We decided on Marabou Design's "Agave Bebe" which was a great throwback to our Palm Springs wedding.
From there, my sister took over planning out every single detail of our beautiful baby shower and I could cry thinking about how perfect everything was. She got in touch with our friends who helped create the look and plan out the nitty gritty details. The cake, cupcakes and favors were all done by Tania, the mastermind behind Soap.ish and Cake4Six. This (super) woman has been a part of our lives for just about 7 years and has helped us plan my bridal shower, our wedding, and now our greatest adventure yet with baby J.
Without further ado, the photos from our beautiful Sunday shower, all shot by a talented photographer friend, Summer Shea Photography.
My 31st birthday came so quickly this year and with us in full-on baby mode, we just sort of neglected planning anything in advance. I was perfectly content with just laying low and grabbing a nice dinner somewhere over the weekend. Lucky for us, Airbnb launched something new called Airbnb Experiences and reached out to me a week prior about joining them on one of their experiences. I admittedly knew nothing about this launch, so I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of fun things there were to do in and around the city through Airbnb. The one that stuck out to me immediately was a full day spent learning about (and eating) pasta called "Perfect Pasta" with host Dario from Baia Pasta. Yes, please!
The day started off by meeting our intimate group of 8 by the info booth at the CUESA Ferry Building Farmers' Market. Our host Dario, the owner and mastermind behind Baia Pasta, is insanely passionate about what he does and it's inspiring to hear him talk about pasta. We all introduced ourselves and walked over to get coffee at Highwire Coffee while we watched the complimentary cooking demo. I must've walked by these demos a dozen times before, but it was great to sit down and enjoy it for the first time with an amazing cup of latte.
We spent the remainder of our time at the farmers' market picking out things to snack on before lunch and ingredients for our lunch that Dario was going to prepare for us. He showed us his favorite vendors who were also all friends of his from his time spent selling his pasta at the farmers' market. We got to snack on plenty of delicious things as well and I immediately regretted not bringing any cash along to pick up things for myself. Once we were done, we packed up everything and headed on the ferry to make our way over to Baia Pasta at Jack London Square in Oakland. It was a gorgeous and warm day for my first ferry trip ever across the Bay—seriously!
At Baia, we really got a in-depth crash course into pasta making and the history (and future) of Baia Pasta. Dario ended up cooking up a pasta dish with sausage and spring garlic purchased from the farmers' market. It was the simplest dish and insanely delicious. No joke, we made the dish TWICE this week already since meeting Dario. I think we've become pasta snobs and that's actually quite alright with me.