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Reading Routine with Baby Boy Bakery

This post was written by Jacqui Saldana, the wonderful woman and mom behind Baby Boy Bakery

Hanna Andersson - Baby Boy Bakery

I feel like when you embark on the motherhood journey one of the things most people tell you to do is "Read to them always!" Even while within the womb, even when they can't hold their own head up and keep their eyes open for more than 13 minutes ... read to your baby! Honestly, the second you become a mother the advice comes in bucket loads and most can be dismissed. A lot of it is subjective to those who have experienced certain things. Motherhood for me is taking one day at a time and cultivating my own way of doing things. A bunch of trail and error mixed with intuition and support from my own mother and husband. Though, the reading thing. I believe it to be a true necessity. 

I have made it a point to weave in reading and book play into our daily routine. Mila has gone from enjoying the colors, to laughing at my voices, showing interest in turning pages (also ripping pages) and now she mimics reading on her own when she comes across a book. Or even her dad's Men's Health magazine. Her bubbly babble while she mimics reading melts my whole heart! I've taken a bunch of video so I can look back at those sweet moments. I can't wait for the days where she runs up and asks for me to read her a specific book or when we cuddle before bed and read a book together. I remember so vividly Ryan and I squished into his toddler sized bed as we read 'Dragons Love Tacos'. It was the his favorite book at the moment and we have his copy that we read together displayed in our living room. We also have a new copy in Mila's library. It is a special book because it is the last book I ever read to him and well I just adore it. I can still hear Ryan's laugh sometimes when I read it now. 

Right now with Mila being the curious one year old that she is, it is unlikely to sit still for more than one story. We start out with a book while Mila sits in my lap, then she will eventually wiggle away. Which is totally fine. I keep reading and showing her the pages. She looks, touches the book, smiles at me, finds a stuffed animal to play with or a toy. She plays and then comes back to the book and so on. I think so long as I continue to read to her, her love of books will slowly grow. I do want to keep reading fun for her and when I read to her it seems to make her pretty happy. Sometimes while I read she will come and rest her head on my thigh for a moment. She will look up at me and the book and smile. Those tiny moments are everything. 

We read at least two books in the morning when Mila wakes up. I sit in her nursery and that is usually when she will sit the longest and listen to me read. Still laden with sleep she plays with her ear lobe and rests her head against my chest. Once she starts to try and turn pages I know she is starting to wake up fully and in no time she will start to wail for some breakfast. In the evening after Mila's bath Dan and I take turns reading. Sometimes we sit together and read as a family as Mila listens to us, plays a bit and starts to wind down. Or Dan will give her a bath and read so I can take a hot shower/have a moment to myself. We read in the morning and in the evening and it seems to sort of book end our day. No pun intended! Our reading routine somehow sets up for success for the day and also for a good night. Ryan sort of knew that after story time came bed time which resulted in a pretty seamless night time routine. I love reading to my little ones. In some ways I feel like reading bed time stories un-locks a 'mom level', you know it is just one of those sweet mama moments that only a mom or parent can really understand. It is pure joy and the fact that it is so good for your babe makes it all the more enjoyable. I am looking forward to learning what book becomes Mila's true favorite. 

Currently our go-to reads are below, you can click on the titles to learn more and add them to your library if you don't already have them. Each book is under $20 and a few are just $5! Leave your current favorite reads in the comment section too, I'm always looking for fun new books! 

The Hug Machine by Scott Campbell

Vegetables in Underwear by Jared Chapman

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

No Fits, Nilson! by Zachariah OHora

Giraffes Can't Dance by Giles Andreae & Guy Parker-Rees

The Pout-Pout Fish in the Big-Big Dark by Deborah Diesen

Reading with Baby Boy Bakery - Hanna Andersson
Hanna Andersson Reading with Baby Boy Bakery

Thanks for letting us share your story, Jacqui! 

15% of profits from our kids bold stripe organic cotton kids long johns are donated to Raising a Reader to aid in family literacy programs. Reading together as a family is important to us in so many ways, and reading together as a family in #hannajams is our favorite long standing tradition.

Decorating the Christmas Tree

With Love, Taza

hooray! It’s time for Christmas!!

This post is in collaboration with the beautiful Davis family behind the blog: Love, Taza

We started the holiday season off by keeping to our holiday family traditions! We decorated our Christmas tree the other week and made a little video out of it! 

We also continued with the tradition of pulling out our festive family Christmas jammies! My mom sent us matching pajamas from Hanna Andersson a few years ago (we did the matching thing in my home growing up!), and we haven’t been able to let them go just yet. We actually have continued to add to them each year since. haha! I have a feeling it’ll remain a staple in Davis family traditions around the holidays for many years to come! So we were really excited when Hanna Andersson asked to partner this year for the holiday, as we have loved and worn the brand for years! you can see them in our video here which we made with the help of our friend Jenner Brown.

Our christmas tree currently is only decorated from the top to half way down. Because, hi Conrad. lol. It’s a funny thing though how much it’s growing on me. I quite like it! I know I said this in my thanksgiving day post, but it’s a nice reminder every time I walk by about what a fun chapter of life this is, and also, how thankful I am to get to be a mom. It’s the best.

I also love our collection of mismatched ornaments! a lot of them are from when Josh and I were little (thanks moms!). Someone told me a few years ago that multi colored lights are actually really tacky and white lights are where it’s at. I was like, “huh?!” for some reason I think about that every time we string the lights. I don’t know who decided that, but I beg to differ. I love multi colored christmas lights! Let’s start this holiday off with some colorful lights, some shake shack hot cocoa every single chance we can get and also a ton of dance parties in our Christmas jammies, because we only live once, and also, CHRISTMAS!…

You can find our family pajamas (#hannajams!) that we’re wearing right here and the other family collections we’re wearing later on in the video here.

Thank you Naomi and family for sharing your experiences, memories and traditons with us. We are so thankful to have such a big family. Please, share your memories with us @happyhannas and join the party! 

 

SHOP matching jammies for the whole family, and the perfect wintertime family looks featured later in this video. 

Guest Pinner: Making It Lovely

There's no better way to get the best lifestyle tips and tricks than from the #ilovemyhannas family! That's why we asked our friend Nicole behind the blog Making it Lovely to share with us how to take amazing pics of kids. Just in time for holiday cards, we hope these tips will make taking photos with the whole family be a little less of a struggle fest, and lots more fun! 

Join us on Pinterest where we are sharing how to take the best holiday pics of the family! 

How To Take Pics of Kids

Find us: Pinterest.com/Hanna and find all our tips at: How To Take Great Pics of Kids

Guest Blogger - Design For Mankind

One of our favorite ladies, smart, an amazing mom and incredible writer, Erin Loechner of Design For Mankind wrote a piece on her blog about rocky yet beautiful transitions that happen in life when the seasons change. 

Nestled in the Midwest with her baby Bee and husband Ken, she writes from the heart which is why we are so excited to have her as a guest blogger here on the Hanna Blog! Read her full post on embracing transition here.  

Design For Mankind - The Hanna Blog

Well, we’re finding a rhythm, that’s all. Summer is melting away as we’re welcoming fall and this is the time of year I run around the house furiously sharpening pencils and cooking with cinnamon. I like summer, I like the heat, and yet, the moment I spot a yellowing leaf, any twitch left in my hand from an anxious season of wringing just kind of disappears.

While we were in Ecuador, the tomatoes died. We returned home after a red-eye flight to a container garden overflowing with crispy leaves and bruised fruit and a mother-in-law shaking her head. I just could not water them enough. It has been so dry.

Erin Loechner on Transitioning Times

This summer, for me, has been a little dry. I accepted a project that brings both great joy and great stress and I have allowed myself to believe that one is greater than the other. That joy must arrive apart from stress, and that surely the tension I feel means I have chosen the wrong thing? I shouldn’t have accepted this, right? It’s too big, too hard, too ill-timed?

I have spent days too tired to play, nights too tired to cook. I have spent early mornings up with the birds, before the sun, feeling a bit like a hunted down worm, chasing words before the birds could catch them and they’d fly far, far away.

But then, today, I saw the first yellow leaf. I am turning a corner on the project and the trees are turning a different hue, and the air has felt clean and light. Crisp, even.

Erin Loechner on The Hanna Blog

A few days ago, we spent the entire day at home. We hunkered down, we read books, we danced in the kitchen, we pickled a few remaining cucumbers and rock collected around the neighborhood. There was a chill in the air, enough to grab my wool hat, and I felt like if I could just grip the tiniest piece of that chill – if I could just find it and tug at it like the very beginning of the Saran wrap roll – then it might all unravel and we’d fall into the new season altogether unbruised, still in tact.

When we came home from our walk with Bee’s backpack full of stones, we checked on the tomatoes. They had all wilted, even after our feeble attempts to offer them water, sun, rest.

That’s OK, Bee had said. I’m into apples now.

Design For Mankind on The Hanna Blog

Transitions are hard for me. I want to force them, to speed them, to snap my fingers and be done with the whole process. Summer to fall, fall to winter, all in a matter of tidy moments.

But I’m into apples now, too. I’m into warm joggers and soft sweaters. I’m ready for tiny knits and hot tea and cozy pajamas, for longer mornings in bed, for shorter days in the sun.

But it’s not yet time. The sun is still high in the sky, the grass still green, the leaves still lush. The tomatoes have gone, but the strawberries, the cucumbers, the basil – they’re still here. They still need water.

This morning, I pulled on my favorite striped dress and switched out the sandals for my fall clogs. It was a small transition, a tiny observation that another season is closing and a new one will soon begin.

It felt a little like acceptance. It felt like an announcement of “and,” like a declaration that life can be both summer and fall, both dry and watered, both wilting and blooming and everything between.

It felt like both. The mourning of tomatoes, the celebration of apples. The hot, the cold, the wool, the stripes, the summer, the fall, the beginning of the end of the beginning.

Here’s to the season we’re in, and the one to come. Here’s to the middle, the “and,” the both.

Here’s to all of it.

- This post was written by Erin Loechner of Design For Mankind.