A July trip to Portland

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

In case you didn't know, my husband and I are both originally from Portland Oregon.
Although I don't claim Portland as my "hometown" anymore, I did live there for the first fifteen years of my life.

In July after we said goodbye to Italy we flew straight to Oregon to introduce our family and friends to little Jacob Douglas.

Jacob's baptism was the highlight of the trip, but we did get to play tourists for a few days and enjoy some of the fun stuff that Portland has to offer.

Oregon has quite a slew of vineyards and wineries (hello, we even got married on one back in 2010), and visiting a few is a great way to spend a sunny afternoon.

It's not the same as Italy, but the views are still spectacular and Oregon has a certain charm that's all its own.
Once you get past the sticker shock, that is. The prices of wine in the USA are not similar to what you would find at the Italian vineyards.
Not even close.

One of our first stops was the Lange Estate Winery.

We snapped some pictures, tasted some wine, and moved onto our next stop.

If you are only able to stop at one vineyard in Oregon, make it Domaine Serene. 
This place is gorgeous. 
Even though I forgot to snap some pictures of the actual vineyard. Whops.

We relaxed in the sun as we were poured various wines to try.

Another place you must make sure to stop at while in Portland is Voodoo doughnuts. 
With doughnuts named things like "Old Dirty Bastard" (my fav!) it's definitely a unique Portland staple. 

We spent an afternoon downtown and even made our way up to the Rose Gardens. 

Even though the main reason for our visits to Oregon is to see family, I still enjoy spending time exploring the city. 

Until next summer!

The great 6 month old sleep escapade

Monday, September 8, 2014

I know I've casually mentioned in my past two posts that Jacob has not been sleeping.
By not sleeping I mean 10 minute naps that take an hour to make happen, and only sleeping for spurts of 2-3 hours at night. 

My relationship with coffee hit an all time high.

This fiasco started when we arrived in Florida, which is right around the same time our little gremlin turned 6 months old.

I tried my hardest to pinpoint why my baby who once slept through the night like a little angel was now giving me a run for my money.

A lot of changes happened all around the same time. 
We had to stop swaddling Jacob because he was sitting up and rolling over, which he was not too happy about.
He was also adamant about learning how to crawl, and as soon as that was accomplished he started pulling himself up on all the furniture in the house. 
If that wasn't enough, we also started solid foods (which he did not catch onto as quickly as the crawling).

I have no idea if any of this contributed to his refusal to sleep, and I will probably never know.

All I know is that Jacob turned 7 months old on Sunday, and on Saturday night he slept from 9pm until 3am (when he woke up just to eat), went right back to sleep and didn't wake up again until 6:30am.

Then last night he slept the ENTIRE NIGHT.
He went down at 8pm and didn't wake up until 5am.
Some of you may be thinking, you're celebrating about 5am?
Well in our house it was quite an accomplishment, but it gets even better. 
After I fed him he fell right back asleep and stayed that way until 7:30! 7:30!!!!
I haven't gotten this much sleep in almost two months.

Jacob is even napping as I type this.

I don't want to jinx anything, but if this is any indication of whats to come I couldn't be happier.

I don't know if it's just a coincidence that everything changed on the exact day he turned 7 months old, but I'm ready to chalk his non-sleeping ways up to a nightmarish 6 month old phase. 

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this continues, and I'm daydreaming about all the wonderful things I can start doing now that I'm not walking around like a zombie.

Hello September {weekend recap}

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Do you ever feel like life is just kicking your ass?
That pretty much sums up how I felt for the entire month of August.
September has never looked so good.

I am determined to leave all the stress (and exhaustion) of last month behind, and try get back into the swing of things.

I thought that finally getting a new post up on this little blog would be a great way to kick things off.

Everyone seems to be getting into the fall spirit all over social media, but since we live in Florida now the cool weather ain't coming round' here anytime soon. 
With that being said, I did start to make small strides towards fall over the weekend.

This mama finally got herself a (much needed) pedicure.
Goodbye shades of summer pink, and hello (my favorite) dark brown.

I'm also currently obsessed with this fall's boyfriend jeans trend, and recently got my own pair that I've mixed into my usual shorts rotation. Jake isn't a fan but I'm in love. They are so comfortable and practical. I can roll around on the ground in them without a problem.

Thank you Jacob for the fantastic photo bomb.
"Why are you taking a picture of your jeans mom?"
I don't even know.

On Saturday we celebrated the kick off of college football season, which always makes things feel like fall.

This was Jacobs first gameday, and I'd say he loved it.

We have a little Nole in the making.

Now it's time for this post to end, because I am currently staring at this.

"Help me, I'm stuck!"

Moving Shenanigans

Friday, August 22, 2014

Since we've been married my husband and I have moved three times.
That doesn't sound like much but when you take into consideration that we have only been married for (almost) four years, that's probably more than the average Joe. 

I thought that moving was somewhat stressful before we had a baby, and for that I want to go back and tell past Nicole that she should have stopped complaining and making a mountain out of a mole hole (is it a mole hole or a mole hill? I'm not really sure).
Because honestly, moving really isn't that difficult when it is just you and your significant other.

Throw a baby into the mix, and it's a totally different story.

I'm sure that later on down the road if we have multiple children, I will be telling this current version of myself to shut it because I'm pretty sure that moving with multiple little ones would be even MORE difficult. 

But for now, this is my reality.

After being at my parents house for a little over two weeks our first round of stuff from Italia arrived on Monday.


Little man now has a crib! My husband and I have more than a weeks worth of clothes (we have been recycling the same 7-10 outfits for a month), various baby necessities (diaper genie and changing pad anyone?), and of course toys. 

All week long I've been trying to "move" us into my parents house.
Yes, it's Friday and I'm still not completely done (almost, I swear!).
Trying to accomplish a task here and there during nap times or when our little associate is busy at work in his "office" makes simple things like organizing and emptying boxes take way longer than it ever should. 

The "office"

Honestly, I could live in chaos way longer than is probably socially acceptable, but I feel bad leaving my parents home in total disarray for too long. 

In a month (or two) we will get to do this whole shebang all over again when we move out of Nana and Gpa's house and into our own place.

When you look at the big picture picture though, none of that really matters. As long as I get to see these two goofballs every single day I could live in a box. 

I know you are probably thinking, "Nicole, why don't you go finish unpacking instead of sitting on your computer typing up this post?"

You're completely right. My coffee is gone and my child is still asleep, so I will get back to moving us in and making us feel more at home.

Happy Friday y'all!

Getting real in Florida

Monday, August 18, 2014

Blogging is a funny thing.
People only see what you choose to show them, and sometimes that can give a skewed impression of what your life is really like.

I try to share whatever is happening in my life at a given time, but I've realized that when things aren't so peachy I just don't have the time (or energy) to blog.

It's not that I'm trying to hide anything, its just that sitting down to write a blog post is the last thing on my mind.

Nothing is going badly right now, it's just that things have been stressful.

After moving out of our home in Italy we lived in a hotel for a couple of days before heading to Portland Oregon. Jacob got the opportunity to meet lots of family and friends, but the nine hour time difference was rough on our little guy. He finally started to adjust after two weeks, and then we rocked his world again and headed home to Florida.

Since then Jacob has started solids, started crawling, and had more than one tooth poke through.
He hasn't slept through the night since we got to Florida, which he was doing without a problem back in Italy.

It's been a rough couple of weeks. 

Throw in car searching and house hunting, and this mama is getting close to losing her mind (although I think we have solved both of these problems!).

With that being said, I am so thankful to have my parents here. I love that Jacob gets to see them every day, and it's such a help having them around to watch the little guy when I need a break.
We are living with them until we find a home of our own, which takes some of the stress and pressure off of the whole ordeal. 

As things begin to settle down I hope to have more time to blog, because there are lots of things that I want to share. 
I really do miss this blog.

Thanks so much for continuing to read, and if you have any tips on how to get a six month old to sleep through the night please send them my way.

Mama really misses sleep.


5 Months

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dear Jacob,
You have been 5 months old for a week and a half now!
You are getting so big, your Dad and I can hardly believe it. 

You absolutely love to hang out on your tummy and are now scooting yourself around. You haven't learned to crawl yet, but you can sure get to where you want to go.

You continue to be a happy baby and full of smiles.
You love when your Daddy and I dance with you, and burst into laughter every time.

You are still putting everything in your mouth, but with more intensity than before. We think you may be getting teeth soon, but there isn't anything poking through yet! 

You are still sleeping through the night without a problem, but nap time can be difficult (depending on the day). The only place you will nap is in the little chair that came with your swing. We are having it sent to Grandma and Grandpa's house for you, so the movers took it away on Monday. Nap time has been a bit more difficult since then, but hopefully we will both adjust soon.
You just started wearing size 6-12 clothes, and are definitely looking long!
Your hair has started growing back, and looks to be a dirty blond/light brown color. Your eyes are still extremely blue, and we hope they continue to stay that way!

You are still exclusively breastfed, although we have started letting you taste some of our food. It is SO fun to watch you experience different flavors and tastes!

You have a ridiculous amount of energy, which I'm pretty sure you get from your Dad.
I'm not quite sure how you will do on our super long flight back to the States next week, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that all goes smoothly.

Jacob, you continue to keep us on our toes and bring smiles and laughter to our lives every day.

The San Daniele prosciutto festival

Monday, June 30, 2014

On Saturday we set off to enjoy our last festival here in Italy.
It also happens to be on of my favorite festivals. 

The San Daniele prosciutto festival that takes place every June in the mountains of northern Italy

This festival involves eating lots of food and drinking lots of beer and wine.
My kind of day.

We attended this same festival three years ago (holy cow!) when we first arrived in Italy, and you can read about it here.

The festival starts in the morning and continues on through the evening.
We arrived around lunch time and immediately snacked on some prosciutto and beer.

It was a warm day so we had to strip the little man of most his clothes, but he had a good time.

We made it home just before the rain started, so I'd say it was a pretty successful Saturday.

The festival happens every year, so if you find yourself in northern Italy towards the end of June definitely take the time to check it out!

It's weekends like this that make me sad to be leaving Italy, but I'm so happy we were able to enjoy this festival twice during our time here. 

Finding time for yourself {summer reads}

Friday, June 27, 2014

When you have a newborn, every second of every day revolves around them.
You are too exhausted to do anything else but care for your new baby.

As you slowly make it through the first month, then the second, and you begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel. 

You start being able to incorporate a little time for yourself into your days. 

Each month I feel like I am slowly starting to regain small bits of myself that have been lost due to both giving Jacob my all, and just being plain tired. 

Most recently I've started to read again. 
I've always enjoyed a good book, and I feel like in the summer I crave it even more. 
A couple of weeks ago I began keeping my Kindle nearby, and used the time while I was nursing Jacob to read. He usually dozes off on me once or twice a day during a feeding session, so I would enjoy my book while he endured a milk induced coma.

After I finished my first book (post baby) I realized that I actually can find time to read for enjoyment, even with a little one.

Since then I've come up with a list of books that I'm looking forward to reading this summer.

Right now The Fault in our Stars is only $5 on Kindle!

What's on your list of summer reads?

Mommy & Me

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

After putting together my husbands Father's Day gift a few weeks ago (it involved a collage of photos), I came to the realization that there are very few pictures of my son and I together. 

There are tons of Jacob with his Dad, but virtually none with his Mommy.
After dwelling on this for about a week, I decided to take action this past weekend.

My husband is great with a camera, but if a photo session becomes too much of an "ordeal" everything goes downhill fast. 

So, in order to avoid a disaster I simply got up Saturday morning and announced that we were going to head down the street for a cappuccino. I grabbed the camera and told my husband that I wanted to go on a walk afterwards and snap a few pictures with my little guy.

Well, that laid back approach worked because I got lots of photos that I absolute adore with my favorite mini man. 

On me: Dress Jcrew (mine is from a few years ago, but you can find a similar style here)//Necklace Piperlime (mine is currently sold out, but they have many similar styles here)
On Jacob: Polo Carters//Shorts Baby Gap

I hope my little man always loves me this much.

If you have a little one, do you find it hard to get pictures with them?
I'm always busy snapping adorable pictures of Jacob by himself (or with his Dad), but I also love to have photos of the two of us together! 

A family of sickos

Monday, June 23, 2014

Right now my whole family is a bit under the weather.
Everyone has a lovely "summer cold."
Is it just me or do those two things totally not go together? 

My little guy has been handling it pretty well, just some sneezes and coughs while he goes about his business. 
My husband is the real baby (and always is whenever he gets sick). 

Thankfully this Baby Einstein toy came in the mail, so Jacob has something new to keep himself occupied with for a bit while Mommy takes a second to rest.

The other day I was watching some terrible television (Kardashians, my guilty pleasure) and caught my little man watching along as well. 

Bad Mommy points for me.

If there was a thought bubble floating above his head, and I think it would read something like "what the hell?"

That's what life is looking like over in our neck of the woods right now.
Hopefully everyone is feeling better in the next few days, because we have lots of plans this weekend!

I'll leave you now with some adorableness.

One month left

We have precisely one month left in Italy.
It sometimes blows my mind when I think about how we've been living here for the past three years.

My husband and I arrived here in 2011 as newlyweds, ready to embark on a new adventure and see the world.

We are leaving as a family of three, with a tiny human that we created in tow.

I'm going to miss the cappuccinos, the wine, and the overall simplicity of life. 
 Things are calm and relaxing out here, and the view from our front door is spectacular. 

At the same time, I could not be more excited to begin the next chapter of our lives. 

This blog is a reflection of myself, so I felt like it was time for a little design change (as you may have noticed).
Recently, the content of Pearls & Prosecco has become less about gallivanting around Europe and more about being a Mom and caring for my family.
Don't get me wrong, I still love to travel and I'm already brainstorming trips for when we are back in the USA.
But my priorities have definitely changed, and my day to day life involves more Pampers and less Prosecco (although I am currently enjoying a nice glass of bubbly while I type this).

I hope that you continue to follow along as I say goodbye to Italy and begin a new journey Stateside in central Florida.

I really am a Florida girl at heart, so bring on the palm trees!

4 Months Old

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Dear Jacob,

You are now four months old and SO much fun!

Right after I wrote your three month letter you started to really grab things. You actually play with toys now, and we are always sure to bring something to keep your hands (and mouth) busy everywhere we go. You love to grab onto my jewelry, my face, and my clothes. Feeding you has become a war zone sometimes, because you no longer just lay on me and nurse. You love to grab my face, scratch me, and whack me while you eat. Apparently you don't understand the term "don't bite the hand that feeds you."

At your 4 month check up you weighed in at 15 pounds and are 25.5" long! You are a healthy boy, and are starting to outgrow all of your 3-6 month clothes. Your eyes are still blue, but we have no idea what color your hair will be. It is slowly starting to grow back and looks to be a very light brown.

One of your most exciting accomplishments this month was rolling over. Right after we returned from our first little family vacation (read about our trip to Croatia here), you rolled over from back to tummy. Now you do it all the time. You get stuck on your tummy because you haven't figure out how to roll onto your back yet, so I have to help you flip back over when you become too frustrated. It's a never-ending cycle.

Jacob Douglas you are loud! Sometimes I think you yell just because you like the sound of your own voice. Other times you carry on entire conversations to yourself. You love to chat with people when we are out and about, and they always peek into your stroller to see where all the big sounds are coming from and smile.
Your father and I think it's especially fun when you decide to squeal and yell at 4 in the morning.

You no longer just doze off on your own throughout the day, so we've started to incorporate more set "nap times." You usually take about a two hour nap in the morning, and another 1-2 hour nap in the late afternoon. Sometimes you also take a short snooze in the car or after a big meal. You go to bed around 8:30-9:00 and sleep until 5am, although you occasionally wake up around 4am ready to play.

You are such a happy baby and always have a smile on your face. You laugh all the time, and your Dad and I cannot look at you without smiling ourselves.

Jacob, we love you so much and are having such a blast watching you learn about the world around you! It's incredible watching you grow everyday, and we are so blessed to have you in our lives!